Look to the West (Thande's first proper timeline, and it's about time!)

Discussion in 'Alternate History Discussion: Before 1900' started by Thande, Jan 19, 2007.

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  1. Thande What do you mean 'there's no last page'? Donor

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    ...I've only been here for 2 years!!

    Anyway, boring legal bit first:

    Couple more notes - this will not be written in an "1824: Discovery of Penicillin" format, mainly because I think it's too dry and it's also too much to keep track of. If anything I was inspired by the style of Decades of Darkness. It may seem more like a story than a TL at times, or a series of short connected vignettes.

    Comments are welcome, and I will accept fair criticism, but bear in mind this is the first time I've tried a project like this.

    Also, I take the view that the story is the most important thing for an ATL, just as it is in OTL. I won't ignore the butterflies but I won't let them rule the world, either.

    Now that that's over with...we begin:
     
  2. Thande What do you mean 'there's no last page'? Donor

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    Prologue: Across the Multiverse

    18/04/2019. Temporary headquarters of TimeLine L Preliminary Exploration Team, location classified. Cpt. Christopher G. Nuttall, seconded from British SAS, commanding officer.

    Addressed to Director Stephen Rogers of the Thande Institute, Cambridge, United Kingdom.


    The team has completed the preliminary one-month survey of the world that the Institute has designated 'TimeLine L'. We are, of course, aware that this report will be the primary basis for the International Oversight Committee's decision on whether TimeLine L is worth further exploration. As of now, sir, I must confess that my own opinions are still divided on this issue.

    Perhaps, as I and my team set down what we have learned, we will make our own decisions, just as you will. The information we have obtained from TimeLine L is primarily in the form of local history books, and we have tried to gain these from several different sources to avoid making mistakes based on national bias. We have also used those basic information gathering techniques from the contemporary populace as recommended by the Institute, without provoking undue suspicion.

    As you will know, sir, identifying the point at which another history diverged from our own - the so-called Point of Divergence - is often not so easy as the films would have us believe. Even chaos theory cannot be relied upon: individuals may be born after the PoD with different genes due to effects of random chance, but their names, temperaments and even destinies may still be identical to that of our history.

    A note on terminology. Our own world's history, also sometimes called "TimeLine A", shall in this report be contracted to 'Our TimeLine' or OTL for short, as is the Institute policy. Comparisons to OTL are inevitable as we study TimeLine L (henceforth abbreviated to TLL) but it is my opinion that they should not be taken too far.

    Let me use an example from the history of my own country. A Scot from a timeline where Scotland remained independent might well look upon the United Kingdom of OTL as being an English Empire in Scotland. But an Englishman from that history might be similarly appalled at the UK, because change always goes both ways. This is a paradigm which is all over TLL, as you will soon see.

    Enough beating about the bush. The jury is still out on the PoD, but Dr Lombardi has the strongest theory so far.

    It all begins in the year 1727, at an event that Dr Pylos insists on referring to as the Coronation of the Hun, when the axis of history began to spin the world towards a different fate altogether...
     
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  3. Agentdark All glory to the Black Pharaoh

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    Oh very good, I am glad to be seeing this....:)
     
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  4. Max Sinister Retired Myriad Club Member Gone Fishin'

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    Coronation of the Hun, in 1727? It obviously can't be Attila himself, so I guess it's more of an epithet.
     
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  5. GTD Aquitaine Hunter of Quasars

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    After seeing oblique references to this TL time and again during my cruising of the old map thread, I can say nothing but huzzah! And it's about time. :D
     
  6. Zarth Well-Known Member

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    agreed blahbity blah
     
  7. Thande What do you mean 'there's no last page'? Donor

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    Part #1: The Coronation of the Hun

    From "Nasty, Brutish, and Short - the Reign of King George II of the Kingdom of Great Britain". (1985, Northfire Press, Durham).


    On the eleventh of June, 1727, a man of sixty-seven years suffered a stroke and died. And, ninety-nine times out of a hundred, the world would not have marked such an event. But when the man was the King of Great Britain, the King of Ireland and the Elector of Hanover (though he himself had claimed its unrecognised Kingship), things were different indeed.

    Three days after the death of King George I, the Privy Council convened to proclaim George's only son, also named George, as King George II. Many had looked forward to this event with some degree of dread. As it would later become well known among the English, the Hanoverians had a tradition of violent disagreements between father and son. While he had been Prince of Wales, George had done everything he could to undermine the rule and policies of his father. It was no secret that he wished to replace the popular and skilful Robert Walpole, first among the King's Ministers, with Sir Spencer Compton, a nonentity. This would be George's revenge for Walpole, a former supporter of his as Prince of Wales, having eventually joined one of his father's governments.

    In the event, and probably better for the sake of England, George was persuaded by his wife, Queen Caroline, that Walpole must stay. This guaranteed the rise of the Whig Party, to the extent that they would dominate Parliament for the forseeable future. It was no secret that George disliked England, with its meddling politicans interfering with the divine right of Kings, and always considered himself a Hanoverian and a European first. This was an advantage in some ways for Walpole, as it let him draw more of the King's powers to himself and Parliament - thus becoming the first true Prime Minister - but also alarmed him, for Walpole intended to keep the Kingdom out of damaging European wars, and George felt quite the opposite.

    All of these issues would eventually return throughout George's short reign, but none of them would ever eclipse that which plagued him all his life, for his best efforts. The curse of the Hanoverians reared its head once more: just as George had detested his father, so his son, Prince Frederick, detested him.

    For all the accusations that have been levelled at him in latter ages, and as he has been darkened by the shadows of his more illustrious descendants, George II was not stupid. Reckless, yes, and careless of privilege. But not stupid. He did not want to repeat the mistakes of history. He would not let his son gather support against him as he had to his father. And George II had an idea. Prince Frederick would go, not back to Hanover (which in George's mind, if not Frederick's, would be a blessing) but to the godforsaken ends of the Earth.

    To England's Colonies...

    His wife, Queen Caroline, dissuaded him of this reckless course also[1], and in the end George went to be coronated in Westminster Abbey, on October 4th 1727, with his son Frederick by his side.

    The coronation would, perhaps, have been remembered in any case, for the noted Hanoverian composer Handel had been brought in to write numerous new pieces of music. Perhaps the best known is 'Zadok the Priest', which remains performed at every British coronation in any Kingdom of the Union. But the music of Handel, and indeed all else, would be overshadowed by the events that meant this date would live in infamy.

    A confusion over arrangements meant that Handel's superb pieces were nonetheless played in the wrong order, which led to considerable flusterment on the part of many churchmen. It was, in fact, a particularly loud and unexpected note in Handel's "Grand Instrumental Procession", coupled with perhaps a rumple in the blue carpet, which led to the King, on the way to his throne beside the Queen, to stumble and fall before the great dignitaries there to pay homage to him.

    A deathly silence descended, and indeed it might have ended there, for the assembled Lords Spiritual and Temporal knew better than to incur any royal wrath at this injuncture. The incident, they thought, as the king picked himself up with as much dignity as possible, would never be mentioned again.

    The young Prince Frederick, twenty years old and retaining much of his teenage precociousness to go with the Hanoverian hatred, did not so such restraint. He let out a single 'Ha!' of delighted laughter, and with it, changed the world forever.

    George was furious. Immediately after the coronation was complete, he told the Queen that he had elected to return to his original plan. Caroline agreed, almost equally upset at the Prince's behaviour.

    The paperwork caused by the incident was, as is recorded in Robert Walpole's memoirs, immense. Nonetheless: Prince Frederick was, as the eldest son of the King of England, rightfully the Duke of Cornwall, a title that could not be Attainted. George did everything else he could, though. Frederick was banished to the American Colonies, to Virginia, indeed to the new town that had been named for him: Fredericksburg. A title was invented for him as a sinecure, that of Lord Deputy of the Colonies. What was at the time the work of a few strokes of a clerk's pen, would eventually become very important indeed...

    George, meanwhile, calmly foisted the title of Prince of Wales on his younger son William Augustus, already the Duke of Cumberland at the age of six. No secret was made of the fact that William was now George's heir, and upon George's death would be coronated William IV.

    And Frederick looked to the west, and to the future.

    [1] In OTL, it ended there - CGN.
     
  8. Thermopylae : VIDEO

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    Dr. Pylos? Nice. Coronation of the Hun? Very nice. British royalty in Frederickburg? Awesome!

    I love where you're going with this TL. A bit different from my style, never really had the patience for this sort of prose type stuff. But nonetheless, quite, QUITE good.

    I want to know what happens to Prince Frederick! Surely he won't take the revocation of his birth right lying down!

    What sort of military career is the Prince going to go in to? (I presume it's a military career). If he goes into a naval career, you could make oh so many references to the Norfolk area. (And dammit Norfolk only gets mentioned in Civil War TLs! :mad: ;))

    I sense an interesting NA situation in the future. And perhaps even a British royalty shakeup! :eek:

    Do go on!
     
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  9. Thande What do you mean 'there's no last page'? Donor

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    Thanks, Thermo. I wasn't including your TLs of course when I said I didn't like the 1842: Water Powered Spinning Cotton Gin Invented style, of course. With yours, it's invented in Polish Armenia. ;)

    I'm currently weighing my options for where to go next. The crucial thing is that there won't be many obvious effects of this POD for a while, except in British politics. The next major change is almost another POD from OTL, because events leading up to it are virtually the same.

    A hint: notice the title of the reference book quoted in Chapter 1...
     
  10. Thermopylae : VIDEO

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    Then where does that leave "These Hills"? :( ;)

    Nasty, Short, Brutish. Some sort of war? Or more subtle... Assasination?
     
  11. Thande What do you mean 'there's no last page'? Donor

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    Here's a hint. What is George II best known for in OTL?
     
  12. Doctor What Charismatic Cult Leader

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    Didn't he lay the groundwork for the Industrial Revolution?
     
  13. Thande What do you mean 'there's no last page'? Donor

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    I mean a specific event.

    (The advantage of TL writing, of course, is that all these comments don't clutter things because it can always go in TLs and Scenarios later, so I don't mind comments).
     
  14. Cockroach Eddy Tracks Donor

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    Last british Monarch to lead his army in battle? Or was the George III?
    Being another mad Hanoverian?
     
  15. Thande What do you mean 'there's no last page'? Donor

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    Bingo.

    And, technically, first, because it wasn't Britain before 1707.
     
  16. Thermopylae : VIDEO

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    Wow. So George II dies in battle! :eek: But William IV is already gonna be king. Unless Fred doesn't remain content at the end of the earth...

    You're asking this to an American. Only English monarchs we're taught in school are William the Conqueror, Henry VIII, and George III (OMG T4X35 R T3H SUxx0rz!!!1!1) ;)
     
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  17. G.Bone lurks

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    A promising start to a new TL!

    Is the Fredricksburg ITTL the same as OTL's Fredricksburg?
     
  18. Smaug Devil's Advocate

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    What sort of military career ?

    Hate to say it, but it he did well against the Native Americans, he might get some political clout.

    I really like the premise, and look forward to more:)
     
  19. Timmy811 Member

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    Ah, so George the Deuce gets whacked in battle and Britain falls to the vile French, leaving it for Fredrick or his descendants to someday liberate fair Albion from their pernicious grip.
     
  20. Agentdark All glory to the Black Pharaoh

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    This is interesting so far...
     
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