However, a civil organization that especially manages the public wagons in the Theonia Union, the Wagon Guild, was established. Thus these wagons can not be driven and carry people at will, and only those who have their driving skills and wagons passed the assessment can be qualified to operate. Otherwise, once they found a private wagon, the patrol will come knocking on their door.
Moreover, Theonia also issued a special law on driving a vehicle. It was said to have come from the proposal of Davos, ‘Any vehicle must keep to the right on the main road.’ In this way, the passing vehicles would not hinder each other. Therefore, it will reduce the probability of accidents and also improve the speed of the wagon.
Of course, Nicostratos and the others will not bother looking into these details and just enjoy the convenience of the wagon.
After an hour, the wagon entered the marshy area of the Crucoli River, which is now named Crucoli River Plain. After more than two years of hard work, the Theonians have successfully transformed this area by building dams on the Crucoli River, digging drainage and filling and drying the marshy area…the marsh, which used to be fishy, filthy and infested with snakes and insects, have been developed into fertile farmland with high yield that even the statesmen of the Senate became greedy.
However, Davos kept his promise, giving part of the land to the freemen who had participated in this long project. And they were almost successful in becoming citizens of Theonia just by virtue of this feat.
Some in the Senate even proposed to build a small town on this land.
However, the then praetor of Krimisa, Scambras, vehemently opposed this proposal. Reasoning that Krimisa had spent manpower and resources to support the transformation of this marsh, and with the construction of the Krimisa-Roscianum road, it has given Krimisa the ability to manage this small emerging plain…
Under his insistence, the Crucoli Plain came under the jurisdiction of Krimisa, turning Krimisa, which was originally a small city, leapt to the forefront of the city-states of Theonia Union. This has also caused some natives Krimisians, who have their status rise, to also want to get a share of the land of the Crucoli Plain. Naturally, the Senate will not allow them to mess around, which also became one of the reasons for the Krimisians to cause a commotion.
Although it is also farmland, it is different from the Plain of Crotone. As a newly developed land, it is still overgrown with weeds, and under the blessing of Persephone, the goddess of spring, the land is filled with colourful wildflowers, making the land more colourful. In the foggy distance, there is a village where you can faintly see some smoke rising. And from time to time, you could hear the sound of children’s playing, parents’ scolding and the noises of chickens and dogs, a scene filled with vitality.
Lycasis, who had been watching the outside through the wagon’s window, suddenly focused his gaze on several shepherds who were leading a large group of livestock to drink by the river. Their dress was different from those of the Greeks, but Lycasis felt that it is familiar.
“They are Bruttians!” With the stinging pain deep in his memory, Lycasis exclaimed. As a child, he had witnessed the Bruttians’ burning, killing and plundering on the Plains of Crotone, which was still fresh in his memory.
Nicostratos, who was also surprised, leaned to the window and watch.
“There is no need to be surprised. The Bruttians nowadays do not only live in the mountains in the west but also other parts of the Theonia Union. Even in Aprustum, some Bruttians would even come down from the upper reaches of the Neto River. Apart from the Bruttii mountains, here in Plains of Crucoli have the most number of Bruttians. I also heard that several tribes are living here.” Appian complacently said.
Lycasis stared at the Bruttian shepherds who were talking freely by the river in dazed, as he couldn’t tell how he felt. For the young men of Crotone, the Bruttians were the “nightmare” that their parents used to scare them in order to make them obedient when they were young. However, now, they are citizens conquered by Theonia.
“I heard that there are battles occurring in the Bruttii area in recent years.” Nicostratos said thoughtlessly.
“There are no battles as it is just some small conflicts between Bruttian tribes due to land. And the praetor of Consentia resolves them easily.” Explained Appian.
Nicostratos sneered, and the silence returned in the wagon.
In this narrow space, the Crotonians and Theonians seem to have a difficult time getting along.
Before noon, the wagon arrived in the city of Roscianum. The coachman needed to give the exhausted horses some rest to recover their strength, and while he gives the horses grass to eat and water to drink, the passengers have an hour’s rest.
Nicostratos, on the other hand, negotiated with Strasippus to hire another wagon to send them to Thurii because he could not endure the prideful Theonian citizen, Appian.
Cariades could only shake his head helplessly as he watched the three Crotonians rushing into the wagon. Then he turned around and went into Cheiristoya’s Restaurant not far away.
Fortunately, there were still vacant seats available. And as soon as Cariades sat down, he saw Appian, who was in the same wagon as him, and his fiancee also entering the restaurant. So, after giving his greetings, he began to order.
Two years ago, Thurii’s blacksmiths invented the pan (with the hint of Davos and after countless experiments). And soon after, Cheiristoya’s Restaurant soon launched a series of fried foods made from olive oil, which quickly swept the Theonia Union.
Cariades ordered a fried cod and two honey bread. Soon after, the waiter served the golden cod meat and fragrant bread on his table, and the hungry man could no longer wait to grab the hot bread and take a huge bite.
He then quickly picked up a knife, cut a piece of the fish, pick it up with the fork and put it in his mouth…
After quickly finishing his launch, Cariades stroked his bulging stomach with satisfaction. Afterwards, he cleaned and arranged the tableware, then gave his solemn thanks. There was a rumour that this set of utensils was invented by the archon of Theonia, Davos, after getting inspiration from Hades. Cariades became convinced of this because an iron fork with only two tines was Hades’ bident! (T/N: Glad that he did not invent chopsticks like most Chinese/Korean/Japanese do when reincarnating/transmigrating.)
As the waiter removed the plate, Cariades ordered a cup of wine, and as he enjoys sipping his wine, he listens to the chatting of the other diners. Cariades, who often visited Theonia Union, could recognize that most of the diners in this restaurant are locals of Roscianum. Although the Greek pronunciation of various Greek city-states is more or less different, the accent of the Theonians is undoubtedly unique, since they included the Lucanians, Bruttians, Thracians, etc., without discrimination…after they joined the union and became Theonian citizens, their respective cultures merged that even their accent has changed a lot. However, from time to time, a few strange Lucanian or Bruttian words would mix in, which was the basis for the noble Crotonians and Tarantines to regard them as “Barbarian” Theonians.
However, Cariades does not discriminate like that.
What these people of Roscianum were talking about was not about the city they are living in, but about their neighbour, Thurii. About how lively the upcoming marriage celebration will be…how beautiful Agnes, the second wife of Theonia’s archon – Davos, is…about how Davos could meet the needs of his two beautiful wives?!…about Theonia’s Medical Forum that will be held in Thurii soon and how many physicians of Roscianum that will attend…and so on.
Some also spoke about rumours that Theonia is about to start building the first bridge made of stone…
Some excitedly mention that the third arena that was newly built in Thurii would be used especially for football matches…
Some boast that when they went to Plateau of Consentia last autumn, they saw how spectacular the horse racing celebration was…
Some retorted that Lucania’s ram fighting is more exciting…
But most will say in agreement that the best and more exciting is undoubtedly the South-Italia Rugby competition and Theonia Football match…
When the diners began talking about their city-state, they began to complain more. Some even claimed that it would have been better for Roscianum to be a part of Theonia Union than to be an independent city-state of Theonia Alliance. Although they have more freedom, they couldn’t get more benefits from Theonia Union, and the citizens of Roscianum also want to own more land…
His words went too far, but none of the diners denounced it. Instead, they even approved it.
‘Theonia’s influence in Magna Graecia is growing!’ Cariades thought with a sigh. After estimating the time, he left the restaurant and went to the wagon. Then he saw three crestfallen Crotonian next to the wagon.
It turned out that all the wagons were hired by the Roscianum’s unmarried couple and the people that wanted to go to Thurii to attend the Marriage’s Day of the Temple of Hera.
Thus the six people still travelled together, not uttering a word throughout the way.
After three hours of jolting, the wagon finally stopped.
“We have arrived.” The coachman shouted.
Lycasis looked out and saw a sea of people, a towering sentry tower and a long wooden bridge.
“Uhm…I don’t think we have yet reached Thurii?” Lycasis said with doubt.
“We are just outside the southern part of Thurii. Horse-drawn vehicles are not allowed to cross the bridge as it would cause congestion. The medical school you are going to is in the Akademia of Theonia, which is not far from the bridge…” Appian felt awkward getting along with these Crotonians, but as a citizen of Theonia, he still has the consciousness of being the host. After saying these words, he took his fiancee’s hand, got off the wagon, and followed the flow of people towards a checkpoint.