When giving a bribe, is it ok to do something like, "I'll give you 5 coins, and a crossbow", and put the crossbow on top of the bag? Or does it have to still be in your hand/stall?
If using regular goods in this way, they're visible when in your stall, so I'd imagine you could throw it in from your hand as well. But making your contraband public knowledge feels like it's breaking the model of the game.
Like the guy above this said, you can't promise cards in your hand, only from the bag, or from your market stand. And, it's totally fine to promise a crossbow when you don't have any. But you might have to show your contraband to the current sheriff to prove you don't, that's on your gaming group to decide.