I must confess: I never played the role of a slave and had no slaves. You will probably wonder why on Earth I get to write an article about this? Well, because there is a reason I never played the role and never cared to have a slave in my roleplay: I do not like the idea of it in SL, as far as I noticed. I got to interact with different ‘slaves’ while I played in an ancient sim, or visiting Gorean realms. But we are not a Gorean sim, so I will not talk about it. I would like to suggest few things about (and for) the slaves we have and we shall have in Auria, mostly because I do not ‘flirt’ with the idea of Gorean slavery.
I know, Auria is not ancient sim, but the idea of ancient (mostly Roman and Greek) slavery is more appealing to me, in a roleplay of course. Auria has (or we try to make it have) many Medieval specifics. Medieval slaves were mostly used for physical activities, and the most important were: working the field and serving the Nobles in their homes, meaning: cooking, cleaning, serving at the table, taking care of the animals.
I would suggest for Auria more than just that. Auria is Medieval, but not quite a typical Medieval: we do not have the Christianity. Auria is Pagan, whatever that means. Why? Because we have people of different believes and religions playing, so why would make anyone uncomfortable? I could even say Auria, unlike the real medieval Kingdoms, is more of a ‘no religion’ place. We are not Middle Ages, we try to create a Middle Ages atmosphere for the players. To go back to the original idea of the paragraph, I shall tell you few things about the Ancient (especially Roman) slavery, so you understand my intentions and ideas better.
I shall not speak about the Roman slaves used on fields or basic housework. There were different types of slaves and, among them, those highly valued in the Roman society: the educated slaves. An educated slave was, for example, a librarian, an accountant, a secretary, a doctor, a teacher. Of course, doesn’t mean all those categories were slaves. Antinous, the personal slave of the Roman Emperor Hadrian was an excellent sportsman and a highly intelligent person with a great education. Philosopher Epictetus (stoic) spent his youth as a slave in Rome to Nero`s secretary, Epaphroditos. Epictetus was also the teacher of Arrian, the author of one of the most famous ancient history work, ‘Anabasis of Alexander’. The list can go on, but I think Epictetus is the best example of a ‘high-class’ slave and also proves what I wrote above.
Not to know such details about History is not a crime. But playing a slave in an Ancient sim like you play it in a Gorean sim is wrong. And highly inaccurate. Gor is fiction, History is not.
I was talking about realistic roleplay in my previous article- just do this exercise. Imagine you, as a flesh and bones person, sitting on your knees not for a whole day, but for an hour. Now imagine sitting like that for a day. Now for a month. You don’t need a high amount of knowledge of Anatomy to guess what would happen to your knees. Or what the long-term consequences for you would be after few months. How would that affect your feet, your bones, your muscles, your spine. Your health. Human body is not build to support it`s own weight on the knees. A slave on their knees was and should be a punished slave; in any case, not a day to day behavior.
What would I ask from my slaves, if I had any (and I shall have)? Well, many things, I can be a very demanding person. Depends on the task they have: a slave taking care of my house here in SL should be polite, entertaining with my guests, have a decent look (meaning I don’t wanna see rags or silks, unless I especially demand it), generally interested about whats going on around her/him. To be able to take care of their basic needs and not ask my permission every time they need to drink a glass of water. I want them have own relations and friends and understand I am not their friend, but their owner (or master, or whatever) and I don’t have either the time nor the interest to keep them around me 24/7 and take them with me on my visits or walks around the Kingdom. I play the role of a Count, which means I have many things to take care of, way more important than entertaining a slave with my presence. Of course, I would not ignore them and they would not ignore my needs and calls, but that doesn’t mean we need to suffocate each other.
An educated slave, well, that is different: such slaves should be more ‘outgoing’ than the housework slaves. A slave used as a secretary should know how to relate very well with those around, write my letters, keep my papers in order, ease the communication between me and the people I need communicate with, and so on. A doctor slave should keep me and those in my family and my home, including the other slaves, in good health and keep close relations with other doctors in the Kingdom, to exchange ideas, solutions, potions etc. I wouldn’t stop my slaves have a relationship or a love affair as long as that will not affect their work. They would have their free time, away from their work, in which they are allowed to socialize, go out, have fun with friends. Slaves are, after all, same human as I am. You, as a slave, have a love affair with the servant girl of another Noble House? Fine, feel free to live your love story in your free time, why not? Wanna marry? Well, we shall talk about that and decide whats the best way, especially if the chosen one belongs to someone else.
I am not interested in sex slaves, so I shall not speak about it. If I want sex with one of my slaves, I simply do it. You don’t need flirt with me – if I want it, I shall let you know that.
Of course, I can not impose my ideas to the other players, but I would truly like to see the slaves of Auria treated better than some statues or decorations sitting around, in a corner, ignored for hours and not able to have own life and fun. I don’t think its realistic or respectful for the person behind the monitor playing that slave.
Best regards and have fun in your roleplay!