Canis was a very small but feisty child when he came under the control of Slave Master Porter. Being too young to sell, Porter planned to keep him for several years; he would be quite a collector’s item when he was grown up. He had the most amazing blue eyes Porter had ever seen.
Captivity didn’t wear so well with young Canis. He couldn’t talk, and a slave needed to be prompt with ‘yes master’ and ‘no master’ and with bowing. In Canis’s case, saying his name was a struggle and bowing was impossible - it deprived him of the full view of a potential attacker.
When Canis attacked a guard in an effort to protect another slave from what he saw as an unjustified beating, he found himself in for his own beating. Then in an effort to teach Canis to bow to free men, he was to get three stripes with a slave whip for every transgression. Canis stoically took his punishment, making no effort to cooperate. It rapidly got to the point where no one would speak to him at all; there is only so much punishment one could deal out to one small child without feeling like a sadist.
He finally relented to Mia, an old slave who had out lived any sale value though she was still useful to Porter. She was the camp cook and occasionally the camp healer and it wasn’t uncommon for Porter to take her advice about the slaves when she offered it. It was she who advised Porter to release the boy from his slave future.
A year and a half later, he prowled through camp with an unnatural grace - a grace that would see him champion of the arena at a very young age. That, coupled with those remarkable eyes, would, in time, make him the most valuable slave on the market.
With that in mind, Porter took Canis to the Chicago School of the Sword. Canis found that he liked these new lessons. His fellow students didn’t know what to think of him. He was, by far, the youngest student in the class, but it didn’t take them long to discover that Canis was very capable of taking care of himself, and being the youngest was only numbers.