In the country house sits a Roman man named Gaius Cornelius, who is the father of Marcus and Cornelia. Cornelius is a Roman senator. He sits alone because he wants to write many letters. While their father is busy, Marcus and Sextus and Cornelia wander in the nearby fields. There they watch many working slaves.
Suddenly they catch sight of a messenger coming towards them. The messenger, when he arrives, greets the children.
“Hello!” responds Marcus. “Whom do you seek?”
The messenger says, “I’m looking for Gaius Cornelius.”
“Gaius Cornelius is my father,” Marcus says. “He is in the country house.” He leads the messenger into the country house and looks for his father.
“Father,” says Marcus. “There is a messenger in the house.”
Cornelius comes immediately and greets the messenger. The messenger hands over a letter. Cornelius says “Alas!” when he reads the letter. “The emperor is calling all Roman senators back to the city. He wants to consult them. It is necessary to return to the city.”
“Yay!” shouts Sextus, who wants to go to Rome. Cornelia groans because Flavia cannot come to the city.