The Eternal City
The scene described on the way to Mediolanum depicted the mass crucifixion of Christians. This was the first mention in the campaign of Christianity. The view of this religion was one of atheists and trouble makers. By not participating in sacrifices to the Empire and Emperor they often were executed in various fashions. It should be noted Jews has permission not to participate in such activities but once Christianity split from Judaism into it’s own religion it no longer had this protection.
The coterie understandably ignored the plight of what form their point of view was the act of criminals against the Empire. This was before the Lancea Sanctum existed, and merely was one of many instances yet to come to demonstrate the violent reaction that the new sect would bring to the Necropolis.