Sunday, March 29, 2015

Berowne's 263

(Also for Three Word Wednesday and ABC Wednesday: "L" is for "Larceny")
Next Sunday is Easter.  Berowne, in a desperate effort to be topical and up to date, has dredged up the following:

Victor: I’ve told you before, I don’t like doing this.

Mike: I know, but this is something special.  I really need your help.  An expert like you can tell me if this thing is worth real money.  If so, well, there’s a big chunk of dough in it for you.

Victor: All right, let me have a look at it.

Mike:  There.  It's a special Easter egg.  What do you think?  Go ahead, take your time, no hurry.  Have a good, deep look at it.

Victor: I don’t need to look it over at all.  I know what it is.

Mike:  You do?  You mean it’s famous?

Victor: You could say that.  How did you get this?

Mike: There are two young men who sort of work for me.  They – er – acquired it.

Victor: Pure larceny, right?  And the two young men are punks who steal stuff for you, right?

Mike: Now, wait a minute.  How they got it or how it got here isn’t the question.  All I want to know from you is, what’s it worth?

Victor: What did you pay for it?

Mike: Well, I figured I could always sell it for fifty dollars – a hundred if I’m lucky.  So I gave them thirty-five bucks for it.

Victor: Thirty-five bucks.  Unbelievable…

Mike: It’s worth more?  A lot more?

Victor: To you it’s worth nothing.  You wasted your thirty-five bucks. 

Mike: What are you trying to pull?  It’s gotta be worth something.

Victor: Let me give you a bit of history.  Way back in the year 1918, the entire royal family of imperial Russia, the Romanoffs, were assassinated by the rabid Bolshevik secret police.  You’ve heard about this?

Mike: Sort of.

Victor: Then maybe you also heard that one of the daughters, Anastasia, managed to live through the assassination attempt and escaped.

She later lived in Europe for years under the name of Anna Anderson.  The word got around in recent years that she had moved to the States and spent the rest of her life here.  Nobody could verify this; she wanted to avoid all publicity.

Mike: And this thing belonged to her?

Victor: You guessed it.  She had this Easter egg with her at all times, the only thing she had been able to save.

Mike: And you’re trying to tell me it isn’t worth anything?

Victor: It isn’t worth anything to you.  That girl, just a teenager at the time of the assassination attempt, was a royal princess: the Grand Duchess Anastasia.  If you could put this up for auction you'd set the place ablaze; I imagine the bidding would begin at around twenty million.

Mike: Holy smoke!

Victor: But if you tried to sell it you’d have cops and FBI and Interpol and God knows who else after you.  And they’d dig deep into your operation and learn a lot you’d just as soon they didn’t know. 

Mike: You wouldn’t consider buying it, would you?

Victor: I would not.  There’s never going to be anything but headaches with this.  Way I see it, the person who owns it – or owned it before it was stolen from him – was keeping it very quiet, and probably for good reason.

Mike: So what am I supposed to do? 

Victor: I’ll tell you what you should do.  Pay the two hoodlums who stole this to carefully take it back to the home they stole it from.  Leave it on the doorstep with a note saying “Easter egg.  Happy Easter!”  Then press the doorbell and run like hell.



Roger Owen Green said...

Berowne, you're such a good egg!

MeenalSonal said...

Few things close to heart to be given back to the person who owns it...Lovely.

Altonian said...

Ah yes! Anastasia, aka Anna Anderson, aka Ingrid Bergman. A story nearly as fantastic as one of Faberge's eggs.

Kathe W. said...

Hah! Very appropriate gem of a story!

Unknown said...

Happy Easter

Mary said...

Great story - Happy Easter when it comes!

Silent Otto said...

Good One Berowne , a Kryptonite egg !

21 Wits said...

How eggstra fun this was! A most Happy of Easter celebrations for you early, in case you don't post next Sunday!

naturgesetz said...

Great story, even if Anastasia didn't survive the Bolshevik murders of the Imperial Family.

Rosey Pinkerton said...

Think positive - there may just be a chocolate egg inside!

keiths ramblings said...

So much art disappears never to be seen again for exactly the reasons you've set out here. Things of beauty are to be enjoyed for what they are, not what they are worth. Wow listen to me!!!

Berowne said...

Worth listening to.

ellen b said...

My parents escaped Russia with no keepsakes to speak of but I can imagine how a small piece of your history could bring a little comfort or identity. I enjoyed reading your story...

Reader Wil said...

The tradition of giving Fabergé's eggs started in the 19th century when the Czar of Russia gave his wife such a beautiful piece of jewelry. This went on until 1917 I guess, with a break of some years in the beginning of the 20th century. Interesting piece of history! Thank you !
Thank you for visiting too.

Trubes said...

most interesting story, but did Anastasia survive and if she did why wasn't she given protection from one of the European royal households...It is difficult to know what to believe about her,
Good story!
Happy Easter,
Best wishes,
ABCW team.

Berowne said...

The thing to know about Anastasia is that what I wrote in my post was pure fiction.

Jae Rose said...

I wasn't sure if this was fact or fiction - of course it's a story only Berowne could tell! personally we prefer chocolate eggs...far less complicated!

Sheilagh Lee said...

very engaging tale of the Faberge egg and Anna Anderson

Berowne said...

To Jae Rose: Chocolate eggs are nice, but priceless Faberge eggs have a certain appeal, too.

Tess Kincaid said...

Happy Easter, Mr. B...

Berowne said...

And a very - very! - happy
Easter right back at ya, Tess.

Sharp Little Pencil said...

Roger said it first, good egg! I love the movie with Bergman and Brynner. Hope you have a peaceful Easter, Berowne.

I used to live in Manhattan and, back in the day, the Forbes building kept Malcolm Forbes' collection of Faberge eggs on display... in little windows, behind bulletproof glass! It was a treat to walk by and be that close to history, but I often wondered whether the eggs should be back in Russia in a museum. Peace, Amy

Liz Rice-Sosne said...

This was a pleasure! Thank you.

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