Friday, 30 April 2010

An Alternative History of Finland: Act Two

Duke Erik, the lovelorn King of Sweden and subject of the First Act of my Alternative History, whose advances were scorned by Queen Elizabeth of England, was eventually toppled from the throne and replaced by his brother John. Like Eric, John had been Duke of Finland before becoming King of Sweden. Unlike Eric John had had a Finnish mistress. It was the story of a love affair between another monarch’s son and a young Finnish woman that inspired the second act of my Alternative Finnish History. Sadly this tragedy is all based on fact with little elaboration by me.  

Set in  Naples n 1717, Alexei, the exiled son of Tsar Peter the Great of Russia receives a letter from his father imploring him to return home. Peter has ruthlessly imposed massive reforms in Russia in an effort to bring it in line with continental Europe.  He will brook no opposition to his reforms, even from his closest family. Seen as the natural leader of the Opposition and in fear of his life, Alexei has fled Russia and will not be readily cajoled back. His father tries to persuade him that he sincerely wants reconciliation and will do anything to achieve that goal, even agreeing to his son marrying his Finnish mistress, Afrosinia. In my playlet, Afrosinia is astonished at the news and finds it scarcely credible that the Tsar would agree to such a match with a girl from peasant stock. But Alexei assures her that his father will honour his word and that they should pack immediately as they are returning to Moscow.

Far from keeping his word, Peter had his son arrested and imprisoned when he reached Russian soil. He was later tortured to death as a traitor. In my alternative universe, Peter honoured the solemn pledges he had given and allowed Alexei to marry his Finnish peasant bride. In turn their children inherited the Romanov throne, resulting in the Tsarist line intermingling Russian and Finnish blood. Again I have included my playlet below.

Napolissa vuonna 1717

Tsaari Pietari Suuri ajoi pois oman poikansa Aleksein.  Aleksei ja hänen suomalainen rakastaja Afrosinia asuvat Italiassa

Aleksei: Afrosinia? Afrosinia! Missä sinä olit?
Afrosinia: Minä olin ulkona kävelemässä. Syysaurinko paistoi kirkkaasti. Miksi?
Aleksei: Pääsen kotiin! Tulen Venäjälle!
Afrosinia: Mitä tämä tarkoittaa?
Aleksei: Tsaari kirjoitaa: Suodaan anteeksi täydellisesti. Sinä olet minun oma poikani ja kruununperiiani. Mene naimisiin Afrosinian kanssa!
Afrosinia: Mutta, minä olen vain suomalainen maalainen.
Aleksie: Kun Tsaari Pietari kuolee, sinä olet suomalainen tsaarittareni.
Aleksei: Tahdotko tulla kanssani?
Afrosinia: Totta kai. Minä olen raskaana.
Aleksei: Älä hermoile. Mennään Venäjälle! Mitä pikemmin, sen parempi.


Vuonna 1718

Pietari muutti kruununperimystä surmatessaan oman poikansa Aleksein, joka vastusti isänsä uudistuksia.

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