In several of my previous tales I have referred to Sir Esteban Tomas de Santini known as Santos. He was one of the people Isolde and I met at our first Meridies event, and he has been a good friend. However, as you may have noticed, friendship will not keep me from telling tales.
Santos is a former Air Force medic and has incorporated this into his persona. According to the story, he was born in Spain and once saved the life of a mercenary soldier by applying healing arts he had learned from the Moors. In gratitude the mercenary band adopted him, taught him fighting skills and gave him the name Santos which is Spanish for saint.
If you did not know this story you might wonder how he ever could have gotten such an epithet. He is a good looking gentleman, but in a vaguely sinister way. He also has a very charming of manner and combined with his appearance you tend to be reminded of the Beelzebub trying to seduce someone out of their soul. For some reason all this tends to attract the ladies and Santos used it to his full advantage. I use the past tense here because these days he is quite happily married.
Santos and Baron Beorn are good friends of Volsungen and Esmerallda of Kimaden, who founded the Shire of Arenal. One of the events they attended regularly was the Sandpit Tourney which was held on the beach in Arenal. The first time I went a viking, Beorn and Santos invited Isolde to come along with them to the tourney. Isolde tells me that they traveled to Arenal via U.S. 90 so the two gentlemen could check out the female scenery on the beach along the way. As Baron Beorn put it, "I can see pine trees anytime."
Isolde reported that the event was very nice until late afternoon when a thunder shower all but washed away their campsite. As a result of the downpour, Esmeralda invited Beorn, Santos and Isolde to stay at their place. With both their clothes and sleeping gear sodden and sand caked, the offer of hot food and dry cloths was one that the travelers could not refuse.
The only minor problem with this offer was that Volsung and Esmeralda had only the one bedroom, so the guests would have to sleep on the floor. When it came time to bed down Esmeralda brought out two sleeping pads. Beorn, who was evidently tired and not thinking of possible ramifications, took the only single sleeping pad and promptly went to sleep. This, of course, left Isolde and Santos with the remaining double sleeping pad.
Santos offered to place his steel sword between them, but Isolde said, "Are you kidding? I don't want to accidentally slice off anything in my sleep! Just stay on your side of the pad and we'll have no trouble, Jack."
It is here that I must introduce the third member of Volsung and Esmeraldas' household: Kima. Kima was Vulsungs' dog. He was ¼ husky, ¼ wolf and ½ collie. Kima was large, fluffy, friendly and one of the few members of the tribe of canines that I can say I have truly liked.
The next morning Esmeralda came downstairs and started to prepare breakfast. Isolde was awakened by the sounds coming from the kitchen and got up to help. The ladies could see over the counter into the dinning room where the two men were sleeping and were watching as Kima entered the room.
Kima first went over to where Beorn lay in repose and started snuffling in his ear. Beorn merely pushed Kima away, turned over and went back to sleep. Kima then padded over to where Santos lay sleeping. He snuffled Santos' face for a second or two then proceeded to lick Santos' cheek.
As the ladies watched Santos broke into one of the most beatific smiles they had ever seen. Perhaps he thought that Isolde had fallen to his charms, or perhaps he had been dreaming of some other lady. Whatever the reason, eyes closed he reached up to embrace his lover and awoke with a start when he encountered fur!
The ladies at this point were fairly incapacitated with laughter. When Vulsung heard the story, he accused Santos of trifling with Kimas' affections and wanted to know if Sir Beorn was going to have his squire do the honorable thing.
It is because of stories like these that Santos got quite a reputation around the environs of Seleone. When he moved to Ardanroe, we did not see him often and I'm sure that there must have been a few of Seleone's gentles who found the tales about Santos hard to believe. This is probably why, when one of our newbie’s finally met Sir Esteban at an Axemoor event, she exclaimed, "So you're the mythical Santos!"
He's hardly mythical, but beyond a doubt legendary.