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Two letters on the same day from Octavian! His present view is that I should come to Rome at once: and that he wishes to act through the senate. I told him that a meeting of the senate was impossible before the 1st of January: 1 and I believe it is really so. But he adds also: "And by your advice." In short, he insists: while I "suspend judgment." I don't trust his youth. I am in the dark as to his disposition. I am not willing to do anything without your friend Pansa. I am afraid of Antony succeeding, and I don't like going far from the sea: and at the same time I fear some great coup without my being there. Varro, for his part, doesn't like the youth's plan. I don't agree with him. He has forces on which he can depend. He can count on Decimus Brutus, 2 and is making no secret of his intentions. He is organizing his men in companies at Capua; he is paying them their bounty-money. War seems to be ever coming nearer and nearer. Do answer this letter. I am surprised that my letter-carrier left Rome on the 1st without anything from you.

1 Impossible, that is, with safety to the opponents of Antony, the boni. For Antony as consul would preside, and it would be surrounded by his guards. Several meetings of the senate were, as a matter of fact, held before Antony's term of office was over. On the 1st of January the new consuls, Pansa and Hirtius, would preside.

2 Now governor of Gallia Cisalpina, who would be sure to take Octavian's side, because Antony claimed to have been nominated to his province.

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