But Bryennius, in fear of his life resembled a maniac, and was by no means in need of rest, for how should a man be who has lost all hope of life? And yet he immediately complied with the General’s wish, for a slave readily submits to every command, more especially if he is a prisoner of war. When the two leaders had dismounted, Alexius at once lay down on some green grass, as if on a couch, while Bryennius sat further off, and rested his head on the roots of a tall oak. My father slept, but “gentle sleep,” as it is called in sweet poetry, did not visit the other.
But lying there he raised his eyes and saw the sword hanging from the branches, and as he did not see anybody about just then, he shook off his despondency, conceived a daring plan and plotted to kill my father. And the thought would quickly have been translated into action, had not some divine power from oh high prevented him, which appeased the fierce emotions of his mind, and forced him to look kindly at the General.
Fortune of the Romans
I have often heard the latter tell this tale. Whoever likes may learn from this how God was guarding the Comnenus like a precious object, for a greater dignity, intending by means of him to restore the fortune of the Romans. If later on undesirable things happened to Bryennius, the blame must be laid on certain of the Emperor’s courtiers; my father was blameless. Such then was the end of Bryennius’ rebellion.
VII But Alexius, the Great Domestic, who was also my father, was not destined to rest in quiet, but to proceed from one struggle to another. On his return, Borilus, a barbarian, and confidant of Botaniates, went out from the city to meet my father, the Great Domestic, and taking over Bryennius from him he did to him that which he did.
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