Historical setting: 562 C.E. Gaul
As when I arrived here, I’m granted audience with the bishop. He greets George with a familial hug and to me, he nods politely. This time the abundance of robes filling the throne seems buoyed by our presence. And I see it is because of George.
“So my dear cousin George, have you made proud the scholars of Latin with your fine use of words?”
“I hope I have, Your Excellency. But also, I would like to gain your respect not only as a writer and a scholar but as a candidate for ordination as a priest. I think you will find I have been able to completely cleanse Lazarus here of heresy. Would that not qualify me?”
I feel I must answer for myself as I will surely fail any heresy test. “Your Excellency the technique young George used for my instruction was devised to set my prayers toward a saint with the use of a relic.”
The bishop seems impressed and does not quiz me further on my thoughts of a three-headed god. He doesn’t even ask that my relic produce a miracle so Georgius Florentius Gregorius will indeed be assigned to the seminary to be educated as a priest. A messenger is sent on a fast horse to George’s family requesting they dispatch four horsemen to accompany him on this journey to assure his safety.
The bishop now turns to me to explain that the departing Roman army has left the wealthy aristocracy vulnerable to attacks by highwaymen so horsemen and weapons are needed for those certain few. Had I a longer tunic or a golden chain for my relic surely I would already know well of this terrible fate of privilage.
He now addresses my request and assures me I have a place at a scribes bench with the inks going forward.
“That is a kind and generous offer Your Excellency, and I do wish to make good use of the scriptorium in the summer season. But now it is time for plowing and planting and I have to go to help my family at the farm and vineyard.”
“That seems a menial pastime when your abilities are with the inks.”
“It is my humble choice, Your Excellency.”
So George and I have both succeeded yet neither seems to have changed the other and the ancient church is still in ashes.
(Continued Tuesday, March 31, 2020)