b'62LISA E. BETZI am sorry I missed the funeral, but I was out of town. I came as soon as I heard the news. He turned to Livia. How are you, my dear niece? Fine, thank you. He gave her a long appraising look before his dark gaze re-turned to Curio. I would like a word with you. In private.Very well. Curio led his uncle to a small room off the atrium where they could talk in private. What can I do for you?I assume Livia has come under your guardianship as new head of the family?Yes. How much does she inherit?I dont know.You havent opened the will yet?Fishing for details, was he? Unfortunately, Curio could see no way to keep the truth from him. ThereisapossibilityFathersdeathwasnotanaccident. Until we know more, the will remains sealed.Roman law forbade opening the will until a suspicious death had been cleared up.Are you suggesting there will be a murder charge? Gemellus eyes lit up. No doubt delighted to learn his bossy older brother had been killed with intentional malice.Were not yet sure.Does your mother know about this?Not yet. I didnt want to upset her.How thoughtful of you. Already you show better sense than your father, so perhaps you will listen to reason.When had Gemellus ever spoken reason? But Curio controlled his growing temper. What do you want?Livia is a respectable girl with an even more respectable dow-ry. Why waste her charms on a small fish like Avitus when she could do so much better?'