Burton Dasset is, in many ways, a suitable Treasurer. Diligent, hard-working, and above all gullible. Otherwise he would not have noticed that I've not paid him since 2009. But while working out the annual reports, he discovered what he has described as "irregularities" in Charlii's and Young Keith's expenses.
The young couple have, it seems, used Beaker funds to pay the mortgage on their "second home". Why, Burton asked, do they need a second home when Young Keith was born in Bedford, and has lived in Husborne Crawley his whole life - and shares the Trainee Archdruidical Suite - with six double bedrooms and a billiard room - rent free?
Well, as Young Keith pointed out - the Suite is not his. It goes with the job. The fact that, as my only child, he will inherit the Moot House when they finally drag my carcass out of this stately pile is irrelevant. Young Keith and Charlii are ensuring that they have somewhere to live when they retire. And so they borrowed money at a reasonable going rate from the Beaker Trust Fund (Caiman Islands), in a totally transparent transaction, and bought a house in the Cotswolds, paying the interest via legitimate Beaker expenses.
Yes, they have made a mint out of renting the cottage out to Tory grandees who want to get close to David Cameron at weekends. But I don't see why anyone should object to this. It is, after all, their house.
I do need to clarify some of the wilder claims that have been scattered abroad in the scurrilous independent website "Moot House Underground". In particular:
- When Charlii said to Burton "Don't you know who I am?" she was following correct Druidical protocol. It is a Beaker tradition, going back 6,000 years, that a accusers have to identify correctly the people they are unjustly insinuating wrong-doing about.
- Yes, Charlii and Young Keith have sold the house off at a massive profit. But when Madonna decides she needs a new house, to fit in all her adopted children, you don't stand in the way of such a selfless humanitarian act. Madonna's children have to live somewhere. The 200K profit was just a bonus.
- Yes, I did say "If you're whistle-blowing, Burton, I'll put that whistle where the sun don't shine." I was concerned that Burton's whistle, being made of cheap plastic, might chemically degrade on exposure to ultraviolet light - and would be better-off safely stored in the Beaker safe.
However, having calculated the expenses they've claimed over the last couple of years, Keith and Charlii have discovered that, due to a rounding error familiar to people who've watched Superman III, they have in fact over-claimed their expenses. And they are glad to correct this, to the tune of £18.49. They have therefore paid this back into the Beaker Folk account. And, indeed, I just bought a bottle of rather nice wine with it, which Young Keith and I are planning to drink just as soon as the curry arrives. It's a legitimate expense, when the Beaker Inner Council meet.
I hope this puts the matter to rest. Let's move on.