An aelipto is a specialized caregiver, trained in the art and science of massage and osteoorthy. This worker may be male or female, and either may treat either gender with cultural equanimity. Aeliptos originated in The Wakari Coast and were quickly adopted across the continent. They are now found in upper class homes and bathhouses in every city. While freeman aelipto can be found, most often these are slaves selected and specially trained for this role.
Aeliptos are formally trained in an apprentice system or in small groups. Training typically lasts two to four years.
Payment & Reimbursement
While aeliptos are often enslaved workers, earning profit for their owners, they are highly skilled and often develop a rapport with their regular clients. It is common practice among the upper classes to tip a hired aelipto (meaning, not one owned by their own household) and the general expectation is that while the hire goes to the master, the slave may keep this money for their own. These gratuities can be generous, especially at a luxurious destination such as the Kalen Baths or where groups of recreating gentlefolk must display their wealth by their largesse.
Training to become an aelipto is expensive and its benefits great. A slave with such training will not be sold for lesser manual labor or greatly mistreated, for he or she is now a valuable investment. These slaves enjoy a higher status among the enslaved and are often given money or small gifts by their clients, if they serve at a bathhouse or similar establishment rather than in a single household.
Because this is often a service provided by slave labor, it has lost stature in freeman eyes; fewer seek to enter a profession associated with servitude. However, skilled healers are still respected. Especially among the enslaved, aelipto training is highly sought. Such training raises the value of a slave while ensuring an escape from hard and dangerous manual labor and reducing the risk of harsh treatment. In addition, an aelipto serving the nobility in a luxury destination may collect and save gratuities toward purchasing his or her freedom in The Wakari Coast or other nation which permits this.
Typically the aelipto will use a healthful and perhaps mildly fragrant oil to lubricate the skin for massage, often almond oil or something similar. They prefer a narrow, specially-designed bench to give their patients or clients support while allowing full access to various body parts at the best angles for applying pressure or torsion. In some cases, an aelipto may use additional tools, such as rounded sticks for highly-specific pressure or to roll out a resisting muscle.
Dangers & Hazards
As most aelipto are enslaved, they face the inherent discomfort and risks of those who are not their own. Their value discourages more extreme physical abuse which might weaken their utility, but they are still subject to verbal abuse and less severe physical abuse. Sexual assault is also a possibility, rare in most good bathhouses or clinics but possible in private homes.
Aeliptos provide a luxury service to those who can afford more than the most essential physical care.
Images by Anna Mikkelgaard from Pixabay, and Hippopx. Used under CC license.