Roman Times – Judea
The homeless outcast known as Cursed ANNA has spent her days avoiding the reproachful glances of her fellow Jerusalemites and her nights defending against the bitter cold and her growing hunger and fear. Her deepest desire is to find acceptance among her people. For that to happen she must live one more day, and one more day after that. Desperation drives her to turn to the only means of survival for women without friends or family—harlotry. At Jerusalem’s Dung Gate in the dead of night, a scarlet-caped Roman soldier nears, and Anna quakes at having to approach the imposing, broad-shouldered man. Confronted by the foreigner, who identifies himself as the fortress commander, Anna fears she has made a terrible mistake.
JULIAN OF ALEXANDRIA is counting the days until he could escape this cursed assignment. He suspects his mother, his Jewish mother, is to blame for the bad luck of being stationed in Judea. Raised thoroughly Roman, Julian wants nothing to do with the Jews. Until Anna. Anna, the spirited Jewess who means to be a harlot. Except this frightened half-dead beauty seems an unlikely seductress. Though he should flee this attraction and fulfill his promise to his father to find a Roman wife, Julian makes himself Anna’s protector.
Impossible choices face this desperate Jewess and her hardened Roman commander. Will their rigid beliefs and traditions separate them, or will they follow their hearts?