A/N: This rose from a role play someone else started where the USA of 1983 is sent back to 1783 on alternatehistory dot com. We posted as if we lived through it from then till the present. He covered lots of historical stuff (including what happened to Poland), and we both covered a fair amount of pop culture. I did a few posts of comments on how it impacted "Peanuts." The originator had Beethoven "selling out," as Schroeder would call it, so that adds to the start and end of this fic (along with the "Weird Al" Yankovic song I invented a few lines for). If you really want to see it, it's in the Alien Space Bats section which you have to be a member of the site to be able to read. Then just search for a thread with 1983 or 1783 in it.
Schroeder's memories - the main plot of this fic – are from a Peanuts special I envisioned based on comic strips done the first couple years or so after the Event, as it became known in the role play. One note about that is that this timeline develops a "happy ending" that, like Heather as the name of the little red-haired girl, is merely fanon from the specials and not technically "Peanuts" canon since it's not in the strips. It's a nod to how Schulz explores the fact Marcie's dad canonically never had much time for her before the Event and makes it so he was one of those left behind when the 1983 USA was copied and pasted into 1783, something used by numerous writers, the originator imagined, to show how some deal with such losses due to family travelling on business, etc.. And, since Peppermint Patty already didn't have a mom, I figured that fans would keep writing in suggesting they be paired, and that Schultz would acknowledge that possibility, just like he finally gives Heather a name, by at least hinting at it in a special.
The main plot of the special, of course, is the desire to find Beethoven, Lucy's interest in helping Schroeder, and Sally's funny attempts to be another Samantha Smith (a girl famous as a peacemaker who survives in this timeline.) It would air in 1985 or so, which puts the opening and end which bookend the main story in the early '90s, when Beethoven would be 19-22 and the Peanuts gang in high school/middle school.
Always Beethoven to Me
The teen smiled sadly as the melodic yet comedic voice of "Weird Al" Yankovic crooned out of the tape player portion of his boon box.
"He can go straight from Peanuts to rolling in dough," Yankovic began singing. "He can make fans named Schroeder cry 'Say it ain't so!' He appears in the ads and late night on TV. He goes by Ludwig but he's always Beethoven to me."
Schroeder smirked. The "say it ain't so" line had been reportedly said by a young boy to "Shoeless Joe" Jackson after Jackson was banned for gambling against his team in the 1919 World Series. His good friend and baseball teammate, Charlie Brown, loved that line when he first heard it on the radio, weeks before Schroeder got the tape.
"Oh, he's learned about stardom. All the fame that he wants. Since we came back in time. Oh, the thrill never wears out. Even tabloids can't make him go out of his mind," Yankovic sang in a later part of the song. "He can ride his back forty somewhere in Montana. He'll get a beach front condo, rest in a cabana. And he'll dream up a song riding on a Jet Ski. Though he's got Modern wealth he's always Beethoven to me…."
It was a parody based on Billy Joel's "Always A Woman to Me," and many said it was one of Yankovic's best, as it discussed how Beethoven had been won over to creating modern rock music and stardom since the Event, experimenting with so many new instruments, such as synthesizers, in addition to what he was familiar with.
To Schroeder, though, it was sadly bittersweet. Indeed, parody seemed somehow fitting. How could his hero have done this? Sure, Beethoven had been only twelve, almost thirteen, and easily swayed when the Event took place, but still, he was supposed to be a classical musician, not a rock artist experimenting with all manner of fancy synthesizers, new beats, and so on.
"Hey," Lucy Van Pelt said with a warm smile as she leaned against his piano.
Schroeder sighed. Lucy drove him crazy, but he was starting to see her heart was in the right place. As teens do, he was starting to see there was something very nice about her, too, as she was mellowing herself.
"Funny song, huh?" Lucy asked as she turned off the boon box and looked at him. The day of the Event still stuck in their minds. "It's weird how things worked out."
"The Event was unprecedented. And, I appreciate your concern," Schroeder admitted. "It's just not the same with him as Ludwig."
"Hey, I had dreams, too, when that thing happened and our country went back in time 200 years. Remember?" Lucy asked as she stood up and leaned over toward him.
He couldn't help but chuckle. "How could I forget?" he asked, glad to have that to take his mind off of Lucy's pushiness and Beethoven's selling out.
Indeed, when they first went back, it was all like a dream come true to him.
"Well, Sir, there's one good thing about this," Marcie said. The nine-year-old schoolgirl was speaking to her best friend Peppermint Patty, who always got very poor grades. "Now there's 200 years of history you don't have to learn."
"It's still a shame about your dad, though," Patty returned with a frown.
"He travelled a lot on business. He never had much time for me," Marcie said as she and Peppermint Patty walked toward a friend's house. "I suppose things won't be quite the same. But, I feel bad now that I wished I had your dad sometimes."
"Yeah, but I don't have a mom. And, now there goes my dad's promise to take me to Paris," Peppermint Patty lamented.
They got to Franklin's house. The young boy greeted them and stepped outside, as did Charlie Brown, one of a number of friends on the other side of their small town. "Hi," Franklin said excitedly. "One of my uncles and one of Charlie Brown's are both volunteering for the navy. They say they're going to wipe out slavery and need all the help they can get."
"I hear lots of Americans of both races are joining the effort," Marcie said as they began walking.
"I wonder what it would look like for boats from the 1780s to face a modern warship," Peppermint Patty said.
Charlie Brown frowned. "Probably like when I throw a pitch and the ball comes back at me."
"Charlie Brown and I were also discussing what some relatives might do to help rebuild the territory we're trying to buy from Spain," Franklin said.
"It's going to seem strange to have a frontier again," Marcie said. "But, we can right a lot of wrongs if we do things right," Marcie said. "That's why history is important, Sir, so we can know what happened and then stop it," she said.
Peppermint Patty, as usual, was annoyed by Marcie calling her that. "Stop calling me Sir."
"Marcie has a point about history," Charlie Brown said. "Right now, Schroeder is beside himself he's so excited. He knew Beethoven was born in 1770 and where, so he wants to contact him."
"You sound uncertain, Chuck. What's wrong? Don't you have faith in your friends?" Peppermint Patty asked, partly anxious that it might mean he didn't have confidence in her, which would hurt since she liked him.
"I have plenty of faith in Schroeder. It's who's helping him I'm concerned about."
Lucy leaned on Schroeder's piano as he practiced in his home. "Just think. I can get you Beethoven's address."
"I can do that myself. I plan to write the West German ambassador – the Modern one has made contact with the Retro Elector of Cologne."
"Well, I can get you an autographed photo." She turned toward him. "Nobody has an autographed photo; he died before cameras were invented."
Schroeder remained calm. "His first public performance was in 1778 and his first published work in March of 1783. So, the media found him quickly after the Event."
Lucy got right into his face. "Well, I'll have you know Van Pelt is a very aristocratic name! Posing as a wealthy Austrian duchess I can arrange a private audience. Never underestimate the power of aristocracy!"
At this point, Schroeder pulled his piano out from under her, leaving her on the ground.
"I never knew Schroeder was so anti-aristocrat."
Lucy walked toward Charlie Brown's house shortly thereafter. Sally Brown, a couple years younger, saw her and asked, "What's wrong?"
"Oh, that Schroeder," Lucy fussed. "I can't get him to notice me even when I tell him our name is aristocratic."
"That might have meant something back in the 1980s," Sally said, "but now that's nothing. There's kings and queens all over Europe again!" she exclaimed.
Lucy rubbed her chin. "Hmmm, you have a point, Sally. With all those kings and queens, the minor nobility don't get noticed." She snapped her fingers. "Wait a minute, that's it! If Van Pelt is an aristocratic name, if anyplace needs a king or queen, why not pick me?"
"Why not, Lucy, go for it!"
Lucy walked into her house and announced to her younger brothers Linus and Rerun, "From now on, I will be Queen Lucille. I just have to find the right country."
"What do you suppose that's about?" Rerun asked.
"I'm not sure. All I know is, she bosses us around plenty as it is," Linus said.
"Maybe if she had a country to boss around she'd leave us alone," Rerun suggested.
Later that day, Linus saw Charlie Brown and Sally in their yard. The three leaned against the brick wall they always liked to lean against and spoke.
"I've decided what I'm going to be," Sally announced.
"What's that, Sally?" Charlie Brown asked nicely.
"I'm going to be Samantha Smith. Well, actually, she's already Samantha Smith, but it wouldn't hurt to have another one," Sally remarked.
"That's a good goal. She became famous after writing to the Soviet leader back before the Event," Linus said. "I'm sure someday you could be a fine peacemaker."
"Someday? I'm already starting. I'm going to help Schroeder find Beethoven," Sally announced.
"So, you know where he is?" Linus asked.
Sally was sure of it. "Of course. He's somewhere in Germany, right?"
"Well, yes and no," Charlie Brown explained.
"Yes and no? How can it be yes and no? Is his house on the border between two countries or something?" Sally wondered incredulously.
"See," Linus began, "the German people would probably see Austria as the most powerful German nation, since 'Germany' is a large group of countries. And, a lot of them merged after the Thirty Years' War; before there were a few hundred small ones in the Holy Roman Empire."
"We're talking about Germany, not Italy," Sally retorted.
"The Holy Roman Emperor is also considered King of Germany because Charlemagne held the throne of France, Italy, and Germany," Linus went on.
"Then why don't they call it the German Empire? Did he live in Rome?" Sally asked.
"No, Paris," Charlie Brown said.
"Paris?" Sally asked, shocked. "So, he was a French guy who became King of Germany and went around calling himself a Roman? Boy, was he mixed up!" She left in a huff.
"Somehow, I don't have the heart to tell her about the famous saying about that empire," Charlie Brown said.
He soon found out that he'd better. He saw Sally had gotten a letter in the mail. "Who is it from?"
"It's from the Austrian Embassy," she said as she opened it. "Dear Miss Brown," she read. "Wow that makes me feel grown up."
"Diplomatic courtesy is always nice," her brother said.
Sally continued. "Thank you for your interest in our country. We have had many schoolchildren write since the Event took us back in time. We have had contact with the Austrian court." She looked at Charlie Brown. "So, a judge rules Austria, like in the Bible?"
"Where do I begin?" Charlie Brown muttered.
"However," Sally read on, "while it is true that the Holy Roman Emperor is considered ruler of Germany, the nature of the empire is such that it is best to address the West German ambassador. He will have contact with the city of Cologne in regards to your friend's interest in Beethoven." She flapped her hands at her side. "So, they're giving me the diplomatic runaround," she said with a hint of agitation.
"Actually, the empire really is very loosely knit. There's a saying that the Holy Roman Empire was neither holy, nor Roman, nor an empire."
"So, that's what Charlemagne was up to," Sally ranted as she pranced around the room. "I should have known some French guy going around calling himself a Roman while he was king of Germany would be up to no good. He didn't even live in Germany!" She turned back to her brother and declared, "They're not a real country. They're running some phony empire!"
Linus walked in while Sally was in mid-rant. "What's going on, Charlie Brown?"
"Sally's upset that Charlemagne wasn't really Roman, and she's accusing them of having a fake empire," Charlie Brown said.
"It sounds like what Lucy's got going at our house." Linus started pacing now. "Queen Lucille acts like she's real royalty. She's giving orders and bossing us like crazy. All because now that there's a lot of royalty over in Europe with real power, she thinks if she tries hard enough, she'll become one and it'll impress Schroeder."
"What was that, Sweet Babboo?" Sally asked, suddenly calmed down as she thought about him.
"I'm not your 'sweet Babboo.' But, Lucy thinks if someone makes her queen, Schroeder will go crazy for her."
Sally was anxious for a chance to please Linus. "Well, give me some time. I'll write to all those countries over in Europe and see if they need a king or queen. Then, Lucy can go over there and she'll be out of your hair."
"Well, uh…" Linus didn't think that would work, and he knew why Sally was doing it, but he didn't know where to start.
"Leave it to me, Linus. Anything Samantha Smith can do, I can do better," Sally declared.
Days later, Sally was sitting at the kitchen table. "Big Brother, listen to this,"' she said as Charlie Brown happened to be walking by.
"Now what?" he asked.
"'Dear Sirs, I understand that your country now has a monarch since our country came back in time.'" She looked at him. "I need to write some directly because the embassies don't exist. Like Italy – I have to write places like Milan, Tuscany, and the Two Sissies."
"Whatever. Anyway, I go on. 'I know of a wonderful young lady who would be just right for the job of Queen. She is smart, brave, and very good at leadership. I also believe that, while young, she will be very good at helping others."
"Do you think that last part is really honest?" Charlie Brown asked.
"It doesn't matter; you should. She just walked in behind you."
Charlie Brown turned to see Lucy. "Hey, Lucy. Sally's getting your letters of recommendation ready."
"So I heard." Lucy grumbled a little. "Go ahead and say I'd be good at helping others, Sally. I don't mind sacrificing a little for any future subjects. As long as Schroeder can be my king. Then, we can hire Beethoven to play for us."
Sally beamed. "Of course. Soon, he'll be eating out of the putty in your hands."
Lucy looked confused. She walked away finally, saying, "At least she said the metaphors right, even if she mixed them."
"Hey, Chuck?" Peppermint Patty asked Charlie Brown the next day as she and Marcie saw him. "Wanna hear the news?"
"Since Marcie's got some French in her family history, my dad'd taking her mom and her to Washington to visit the new French Ambassador."
Charlie Brown was impressed. "I'm glad your parents are getting together."
"Isn't it great, Chuck? Who knows, maybe one day we'll be sisters."
"What would I call you then, Sir?" Marcie asked.
Peppermint Patty rolled her eyes. "Anything but 'Sir.'"
"You could always call her Big Sis,'" Charlie Brown recommended. "Sally started calling me 'Big Brother' because Mom and Dad would say things like, "Mommy got your dinner ready,' "Daddy's going to work now.' Or, 'Big Brother can read to you while Mommy's busy.'" Charlie Brown concluded by saying, "She figured that was my title so she uses my title like she does with them."
"There, see? At least Sally's heard her parents call him that. Who did you ever hear calling me 'Sir'?" Peppermint Patty asked in an agitated voice with her hands out.
"I don't know, Sir, but I figured that would make me unique." Peppermint Patty rolled her eyes.
A few days later, Lucy stomped into the Van Pelt home and slammed the door. "All right," she stormed, "who's the wise guy that decided monarchies should be hereditary?"
"Oh, brother," Linus said as he looked up from a board game he was playing with Rerun.
"Sally must have written more than a dozen places," Lucy groused. "All said the same thing; for me to be queen I'd have to inherit the title or marry a Retro!"
"I hate to say it, Lucy, but, that's probably not a good idea," Linus advised.
"Of course it isn't; then I couldn't have Schroeder!"
"I was thinking of how Retros treat women sometimes and how a lot of royalty has mistresses," Linus said, "but I can see your point, too."
Lucy was glad Linus was thinking of protecting her like that, though she didn't like to admit it. Instead, she grumbled. "I could have been the compromise candidate and ended the War of Bavarian Succession if we'd come back a few years earlier."
"I believe that would have been impossible because of Salic Law," Linus explained.
Lucy glared. "Well, I would have abolished it."
Linus didn't know what to say to that, considering that was a tradition of males inheriting which had gone back centuries; sometimes through females in semi-Salic law, but always with a male ruling. Then again, there had been a Pragmatic Sanction to let a woman rule in Austria. Although, trying to think of how monarchs were chosen reminded him of something.
"How's Sally taking it?" Rerun asked.
Lucy said she was frustrated, but "That's beside the point. How will I ever get Schroeder to notice me if I continue to be just 'very minor nobility' to him? I can't afford to pay Beethoven to come here; Mom and Dad say my allowance is as high as it's going to get." She eyed Linus as he'd gone over to the bookcase to look in an almanac. "What are you doing?"
"Looking something up." He really wanted to get Lucy off this bossiness kick, and the best way seemed to be to find out if something he'd heard was true.
"If you help Sally with this," Rerun asked, "won't she go crazier over you?"
Linus acknowledged that was true. "It's better than having Lucy boss over us, though."
He took the World Almanac of 1984/1784 over to Sally and Charlie Brown's house with his finger holding it open to a page. He heard Sally lamenting the same thing as he entered.
"It's no wonder we declared independence," Sally mourned. "It's no fair that you have to be a member of only one royal family to become queen over there!"
"Well, I've got something that might brighten your day," Linus told her. He opened the book.
"What's this?" Sally wanted to know.
Linus explained to Charlie Brown as Sally read. "There is an elective monarchy in Europe right now – the Kingdom of Poland. Actually, it's the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth, but either way, the Sejm, their ruling body, elects the king."
"Of course! I forgot all about Poland. It was Communist before the Event," Sally said.
"I wonder how the Polish Ambassador took all of this," Charlie Brown said.
Sally replied. "Apparently he tried to talk to them and really confused them, so he gave up. I'll did write to them and said the old guy was under the influence of Groucho Marx."
"Karl. Although Groucho Marx founding a political philosophy would make a very strange world," Charlie Brown explained.
"And maybe easier for people to understand back in this time," Linus said as they walked outside. "After all, most of the world is pre-industrial. We're the most liberal nation on Earth." They leaned against the wall and Linus added, "Wait, did she say she explained?"
"She must have written someone about that. I hate to ponder the results," Charlie Brown said.
Days later, Sally was reading her mail. "This is from the new ambassador Poland sent to the United States. 'Dear Miss Brown'," she said, "'in an effort to understand your unusual land I watched some Groucho Marx movies. Unless you meant Karl, Modern Poland must have had a very unusual system. Based on Groucho's thoughts, I imagine it was very isolationist – he refused to join any club that would have him as a member. They must also have been wishy-washy, since he said, 'Those are my principles, and if you don't like those, I have others.'"
"That's an interesting combination," Charlie Brown said.
"He goes on. 'Our political philosophers are trying to figure out what to make of his quote, 'Outside of a dog, a book is man's best friend; inside of a dog it's too dark to read.' What should I tell them it means for politics, Big Brother?" Sally inquired.
"Apparently, 200 years of comedy awaits them." He decided he'd spare Sally the embarrassment if she wanted to keep thinking it was Groucho.
Sally walked over to the table, and sat in front of a pencil and paper. "I'm writing the Sejm directly now, since they know my name."
"They know you're the one who told them about Groucho Marx?"
"Yes. They're hoping to bring in a court jester sometime. But, I'm going to tell them I'll do them one better."
"Linus told me Poland got split three ways in the 1790s. I'll tell them Lucy will stop that," Sally said. "She'll be the best queen Poland ever had." She held the pencil to her lips. "Of course, they only had one other one, but now Lucy won't feel too much pressure."
"Somehow, that made sense, but I don't know why,' Charlie Brown said as he walked away.
Snoopy attempted to write on his doghouse, but the words wouldn't come. He wrote a few intros to books, and then wrote a note to the King of Poland. "To His Majesty the King of Poland," he typed. "Your country is surrounded by enemies. Prussia, Russia, and Austria all seek to dismember you. But, I promise that – while back in time – we will use our mighty forces to protect you. Soon, you be able to defeat these foes and Polish them off once and for all."
Snoopy laughed at his pun, then looked at it again. He wadded it up and threw it behind him like the others, thinking to himself, "Somehow, I don't think kings like puns."
Soon, he heard a bugle sound. He went into his doghouse and put on his flight gear, coming out and flying his Sopwith Camel. "Here's the great flying ace back in time to a world where nobody else has aircraft but the United States. Now, he aloen rules the skies."
Abruptly, Woodstock rose in a balloon to meet him.
"Oops, I forgot balloons were invented in 1783," Snoopy thought to himself.
Suddenly, Woodstock began pelting Snoopy with wadded up paper – all the paper Snoopy had been flinging onto the ground.
Lucy leaned against Schroeder's piano as he played and Snoopy danced. "It's all set."
"Now what?" Schroeder wondered aloud.
"Sally wrote to the Sejm. She told them about the wars and how I can stop them." She smiled broadly. "Soon, I'll be Queen of Poland, and you can be my King. We'll have Beethoven perform for us in the royal palace, and write famous love songs."
"Love songs?" Schroeder asked, stunned.
"Of course. If we're going to be Queen and King of Poland, we need some love songs." She started dancing as she spoke. "It'll be just you and I."
Suddenly, Snoopy took her hand. Lucy enjoyed dancing for a moment with him, but Snoopy quickly turned it into a much livelier dance. A huge question mark seemed to rise above her head as they twirled around. When the dance finished with Snoopy kissing her on the nose, she ran off "Yuch, I've been kissed by a dog!" Schroeder and Snoopy high fived each other.
"Big Brother, the mail came," Sally declared as she walked outside to see him loosening his arm for a game.
"Was there any for me?" he wanted to know.
"No, but Lucy was anxious to read the reply, so I gave her the letter I got from the Sejm."
Just then, they heard an "AAUGH!" coming from next door. They ran to see what was the matter and why Lucy seemed so furious. They saw Linus holding the letter and beginning to read with Lucy stomping around furiously.
"What's wrong?" Charlie Brown wanted to know.
"Don't tell me the Sejm preferred Harpo Marx," Sally explained. "All he ever did was honk his horn."
"I… don't think you have to worry about that," Charlie Brown said delicately.
"I can't believe it! It's not fair!" Lucy screamed. "They picked kings from other countries! I should be able to be elected Queen!"
"What's not fair? Linus said Poland had a queen once," Sally told Charlie Brown.
Linus held up a finger as he continued to study the paper. "Here's the problem. When Jadwiga was the only heir to the throne, back before it was elective, the nobles didn't want a queen, even though she insisted and there were no other candidates. Then, someone realized that there was no rule that said the King of Poland had to be a man. So, due to a historical anomaly, Jadwiga, a woman, was named King of Poland." He turned to Lucy. "So, if they elected you, you'd have to be King Lucy the First."
"Who cares if I could be king – I'm a girl, if I can't be Queen I don't want the title! Schroeder would never agree to it, and I'd want to be King all by myself!" Lucy stormed. "Why did we have to come back in time anyway? I hope they get overthrown and have a Republic! This is an outrage," she exclaimed as she stomped off.
"So, I guess we can't get Lucy to help them," Sally said, dejected. "And, now my Sweet Babboo can't be impressed with me."
"I'm not your Sweet Babboo, but I am impressed," Linus pledged.
Charlie Brown explained. "You helped them stop a war from dividing their country before it ever happened," he emphasized. "That's the important part."
Other world leaders have told them that, too, he wanted to encourage her helpfulness and thinking of others. Helping her, even if not always appreciated, was one thing he knew he was good at. He wasn't as close to the Lord as Linus seemed to be at times with all his Bible verses, but he knew Jesus Christ as his SAviour, and wanted to sahrethat love with her. The time jump had been very odd, but he knew they were back in time for a reason and was glad to see Sally wanting to help like this – even if initially it had been just to impress Linus.
"Wow; I did, didn't I? Maybe I could be Samantha Smith someday, after all!"
"Even if you're not, you'll always be special to me," Charlie Brown said.
"Thanks, Big Brother," Sally responded as they hugged.
The Peanuts gang had gathered at the ball field to talk. The teens were discussing the events just after the Event and since. "It is a shame we couldn't get Beethoven to stick to classical music," Peppermint Patty said.
"It's more than a shame; it's a travesty," Schroeder declared. "It's worse than Lucy not getting to be Queen of Poland."
"It would have become a Republic soon anyway," Marcie noted. "Just like it did here once people saw how the king bungled things."
"Maybe so, but still, I can't believe he's gotten so rich and popular that he won't stick with his first love. He sold out! I told you it'd never happen, Lucy, but you were right," Schroeder finished sadly.
"You may not get to see the real Beethoven," Lucy said, flashing him a big grin, "but you always have me."
Schroeder rolled his eyes. "Oh, brother." He held up his arms and said, "Can't you at least be satisfied that I said you were right? Or that I really wish you could have been Queen of Poland?"
Lucy relented. "I guess that is a good step. Just like I think that 'Weird Al' song is funny, but I also feel bad you can't see him as the great master of our history," Lucy admitted showing him a much more caring look this time.
Schroeder copied. "Thanks, Lucy," he spoke appreciatively. He really was starting to like her as long as she didn't act so pushy.
"Sure; he'll always be alive as the great composer of 200 years ago," Charlie Brown said.
"Right; just like in our history before we came back in time," Linus echoed.
"Sure," Sally said. "And, if he's always alive like that, maybe the real Beethoven's like some people say Elvis is."
"That would be an interesting hypothesis," Franklin said.
"Well, why not?" Sally wanted to know. "Maybe the real Beethoven sees how crazy our media is and he doesn't want all that fame. Maybe he's in hiding as a pharmacist in St. Paul, or a gas station attendant in Vermont."
"Thanks, Sally; you're right. Maybe there is hope," Schroeder said, suddenly very delighted.
Charlie Brown chuckled and used his baseball knowledge to try to comfort Schroeder. "I'm sure the pop star Ludwig really is Beethoven, but look at Ludwig like the Los Angeles Dodgers. To some people, the real Dodgers were the Brooklyn Dodgers, and always will be. They turn the Brooklyn Dodgers into this almost mythical team in a mythical Ebbets Field where the sun always shines and the games are always fun, and even if they lost the fans loved them. Even though they were booed mercilessly sometimes. Roy Campanella got treated so bad once when the rumored move was just to New Jersey in '56, he actually said he hoped they did move to New Jersey. And he was the quiet, soft-spoken one."
"So, Beethoven is like the Brooklyn Dodgers?" Schroeder asked.
"That makes sense," Linus agreed. "Especially since Lucy can be like that lady with the really loud voice who always rang her cowbell at Ebbets Field." Lucy gave him a dirty look.
"Hilda Chester," Charlie Brown informed him. "That's one thing you can be glad Lucy doesn't do; ring a cowbell while you play."
Schroeder hummed, then after a moment started to grin. "You know, that's not a bad thing. At least she was always a fan, win or lose, right, Charlie Brown?" Charlie Brown nodded.
"Sure. Plus, I remembered Beethoven's birthday, too," Lucy reminded him.
"You're right." Schroeder smiled sweetly at her. "I guess we can be fans together, huh?"
"Are you going to be Brooklyn dodger fans, too?" Sally wanted to know.
Lucy glared. "I'm not ringing a cowbell."
"You wouldn't have to, Lucy," Linus promised her. "I'm sure Schroeder would be more than happy to just have you enjoying stuff together with him and growing to enjoy each other that way. Even without her being an aristocrat. After all, we're all equal before the cross." In a way, he'd been just as excited that it should seem so much easier to reach a billion people than 5 billion with the good news that all they had to do to have eternal life was to admit they were sinners, believe Jesus Christ, God in flesh, had died for their sins and risen from the dead,a nd choose to repent and call on Him to forgive and save them from their sins and make them new inside. But, it was still so much harder than he'd hoped it would be when they frist went back to 1783.
Schroeder agreed as he looked at Lucy. "This strange time jump didn't lead to things going perfectly like we thought it would," he told her. "But, I'm glad to have friends like you at times like this."
"Me, too," Lucy said.
A/N: I hope you enjoyed that little alternate universe. One last note – that thing with Jadwiga of Poland actually happened in real life in the 1300s. And, it seemed like the perfect punch line for a comic strip sequence in this world. Truth is sometimes stranger than fiction.