After Tribute and The Island, my third book wasn’t going to be dub-con or non-con. I can write happy kissy glittery love, I promise I can! I just…um…I just haven’t yet. And given that my third book turned out to be set in Ancient Rome, well hell, there was just no chance, was there?
Because there is one rule in Ancient Rome: might is right.
Life in antiquity was hard. Hell, life is still hard in a lot of places. You don’t have to look too far back (or too far away) to see that.
Slavery is a fact of life in the ancient world. Fortuna is a bitch, right? And a slave is a tool, or a possession. A truly valuable slave, one who can read and write or calculate, might be treated with dignity and respect, but for the most part a slave's fortunes depended on the temperament of his master.
In He is Worthy, Aenor's master is a man called Tigellinus. Tigellinus is from history. He was an important man in his day, but very little is known about him today. One thing that has survived is his reputation for cruelty and depravity. And given his competition in those stakes -- the emperor Nero -- that's saying something.
And hell, once you put Nero in the mix, consent flies right out the window. So there was no escaping the non-con in He Is Worthy. But, I swear, I have a reserve of happy kissy glittery love inside me, and one day I'll let out!
Just not this time. Um. Or the next time. But after that (*hastily rearranging projects in my head*)...er... maybe there will be some light at the end of the angst-tunnel after that.