Here's a scene that shows us that its not just gentiles embroiled in political intrigue. Inside a Jewish temple somewhere, a rabbi is running a fractious meeting that seems to be about financing a bribe to the eventual rulers of Rome on behalf of some dude who wants to be king of Judea, name of Herod. Good luck to him. As the men in the temple argue, a man's shrill voice suddenly cuts through the din, demanding, "How has it come to this?" The man is of course Timon's brother Levi, who steps from his spot near the door into the middle of the room, angrily bitching about what's going on there. "Who do you think you are?" demands one old man. Timon gets in the man's face, telling him, "Sit down, Moses." Levi denounces Herod as an idolator. The rabbi says that, of all their choices, at least Herod is someone they can work with. "Why let any of them rule?" Timon asks. "This is our land." Levi is even more blunt: "You are traitors to your own kind! May Hashem have mercy on all of you." Which of course is something people only say when they want [insert deity name here] to stomp your ass flat, and everyone knows it. The rabbi steps down and gets in Levi's face, telling him, "Name yourselves." Levi responds with some names I don't know, but I understand when he says, "We are the wrath of Israel." ["Ah, not the People's Front of Judea? Splitters!" -- Wing Chun] And when he spits in the rabbi's face, well, you don't even have to know English to follow that. Then the punching starts. Timon lets out a whistle, and a bunch of their guys run in to join the melee and give cover to Timon and Levi's escape.
The brothers run out into the street, arms around each other, as Levi joyously kisses his brother on both cheeks, like they just scored some huge triumph. The other guys catch up, wondering what the point of all this is. Flush with the zeal of a recent convert, Timon says that they're "redeeming the kingdom of Zion." He and Levi go on about being the "chosen people," and then scamper off, leaving their sidemen unconvinced and not a little irritated. Especially because the scampering was triggered by a line of soldiers running through the street in full armor. Way to strike a blow there, boys, against other Jews. I also can't wait until the inevitable moment of disenchantment when Timon discovers that his brother is as corrupt as Timon ever was. (I'm not spoiled, I'm just guessing.)
We follow the running Roman soldiers all the way to the plaza in front of the Aventine Collegium, where plebs are gratefully lined up to collect the bread and fish Vorenus is giving away. He joins Pullo at an outdoor table, but his friend isn't sharing his expansive mood; his mind is on Octavian and his scheduled departure from Rome today. They both figure that this one will be winner take all. "Shame not to be there," Pullo says with feeling. Vorenus tells him to cheer up. They're done with all that, and there'll be peace soon anyway. That's so not what Pullo wants to hear. "You know how it goes with me in peacetime," he says. Good point there. He figures he'll be out of a job before long. Vorenus says that they can do big things together, but Pullo says that it'll be Vorenus doing them. "It's good to see you so happy and full of purpose again," says Pullo, jinxing Vorenus but good. "You're second man in the Aventine," Vorenus reminds him. Pullo sarcastically envisions his tombstone: "'Second man on the Aventine. He handed out many fish.'" And also killed Cicero. How soon he forgets. Still, Pullo remains bitter that he doesn't get to be a soldier anymore.