Next month the Barony of Axemoor will again celebrate the feast of their patron, Saint Bogdacious. It will also be the occasion of the investiture of Sir Merwydd of Effington and Lady Eleri of Caerleon as the fifth Baron and Baroness of Axemoor. It seems then that this would be a appropriate time to tell some tales from the first couple of Feasts of Saint Bogdacious.
Since Saint Bogdacious was a Byzantine Saint, the good folk of Axemoor thought it appropriate to honor him with a Byzantine style event. The Byzantines were a very mercantile people, and in that spirit each person registering for the event was given a purse containing a small amount of coins called bezants.
The bezants, actually plastic poker chips, were to be used that evening at an auction of donated goods. During the day the populace as encouraged to try to increase the number of bezants they had to bid with by wagering on contests and engaging in tests of skill.
Now, I am not very good at things mercantile, and when it comes to wagering, I am fond of saying that I have, "The luck o' the Germans." (When was the last time we won a war?)
Anyway, that morning I was trying to think of a way to increase my small stake when fortune provide one. I spied, lying in the road, one of the pouches that were being given out at troll. As I approached, Lady Lilith of Starfire also saw the pouch and, since she was closer to it than I was, she picked it up before I could.
We examined the contents to the pouch and discovered, in addition to a full supply of bezants, a wallet and a set of car keys. Lady Lilith and I agreed that the wallet and car keys should be returned to the troll, for surely the owner would miss them, however, he should be taught a lesson about being so careless about his bezants. To this end, we split the bezants between us before we turned the pouch in.
I made several conservative bets that day but when the auction came around I found that most items were going for quite a bit more that I have available to me. Sadly I did not bid on any items and took my bezants back to Seleone with me.
The next year I returned to the Feast of Saint Bogdacious with the bezants I had earned the previous year, and the hope of doing better at this years event. I learned, however, that last years bezants were not legal tender, there was a new issue of bezants stamped with an arrow on them.
This didn't deter me, indeed I came up with a cunning plan. The bezants were identical except for the stamp, and I knew that most people would not look closely at the bezants exchanged. I therefore paid off my losses with the worthless bezants while keeping my winnings in the new bezants. In this way I accrued almost 200 bezants of legal tender.
At the auction that evening, I had picked out a nice dancing scarf for Isolde and waited for the bidding to begin. The auctioneers started with items near the scarf but, just as I was sure that it would be the next item they picked, they chose something else! As the bidding wore on, the auctioneers seemed to pick up any item except the one I was interested in.
Meanwhile the prices went through the roof. As the bidding got more ridiculous, friends dropped out, but gave me their bezants knowing that there was something I wanted to bid on. By the time the scarf I wanted came up for bid I, had a little over 1000 bezants.
The bidding started at 2000.
Like I say, the luck o' the Germans.