"I am Alpha and Omega, the Beginning and the End, the First and the Last.
-- Revelations 22:13
(The Major Signs of the End of the World, According to the Hadith)
The false messiah—Masih ad-Dajjal—shall appear with great powers as a one-eyed man with his right eye blind and deformed like a grape. Although believers will not be deceived, he will claim to be God, to hold the keys to heaven and hell, and will lead many astray. In reality, his heaven is hell, and his hell is heaven. The Dajjal will be followed by seventy thousand Jews of Isfahan wearing Persian shawls.
The return of Isa (Jesus), from the fourth sky, to kill Dajjal.
Ya'jooj and Ma'jooj, a Japhetic tribe of vicious beings who had been imprisoned by Dhul-Qarnayn, will break out. They will ravage the earth, drink all the water of Lake Tiberias, and kill all believers in their way. Isa, Imam Al-Mahdi, and the believers with them will go to the top of a mountain and pray for the destruction of Gog and Magog. God eventually will send disease and worms to wipe them out.
A huge black cloud of smoke will cover the earth.
The Dabbat al-ard, or Beast of the Earth, will come out of the ground to talk to people.
The sun will rise from the west.
Three sinkings of the earth, one in the east, one in the west, and one in Arabia.
The second blow of the trumpet will be sounded, the dead will return to life, and a fire will come out of Yemen that shall gather all to Mahshar Al Qiy'amah.
"Now I am become Death, the Destroyer of Worlds."
-- Bhagavad Gita
~The Beginning of the End~
On June 16, 1876, the Old World came to an end, and the New World began. On that day, "the Fall", as it later became known, a meteor shower impacted Earth's Northern Hemisphere with catastrophic force. A massive dust cloud blotted out the sun for decades, plunging the world into an endless winter, while a tsunami of Biblical proportions enveloped parts of the world, including--most devastatingly--the eastern seaboard of North America, as far in as the Appalachians. It is currently 2032, over a hundred-and-fifty years after the Fall, and the world has changed a lot… and, usually, not in a good way.
United Kingdom of Great Britain and the Netherlands:
Before the Fall, the United Kingdom was the most powerful nation on Earth. From the global center of London, she ruled the waves with the might of the Royal Navy, and her empire touched every corner of every continent. The Nineteenth Century was shaping up to truly be the Victorian Era. Then came the meteors, and the British Isles were plunged into darkness and a neverending winter. They needed to be evacuated as soon as possible. Luckily, with the largest, most powerful navy on the planet at its disposal and colonies ripe for settlement, the evacuation was pulled off at a scale dwarfing any other nation's attempt at fleeing the cold. Millions of Britons made it out alive and intact, shipping off for Australia, the Cape, and the Raj. Unfortunately, this meant the native peoples of Africa, India, and Australasia would be forced to give up their lands to white colonizers. The Boer states and much of Hindu India revolted in protest, and while the former was utterly crushed and genocide was committed all across South Africa, the Indians--far too populous and powerful for the scrambling Grest Britain to deal with effectively--made it out alive by the skin of their teeth. In 1936, following the ascension of King Edward VIII to the throne of the House of Windsor, Britain and the Netherlands fused to become the United Kingdom of Great Britain and the Netherlands, with Edward VIII marrying Queen Wilhelmina of the House of Orange-Nassau.
Currently, Britain has retained its status as the most powerful nation on Earth in 2032; however, France and the UAR are hot on its tail, fueling something of a rivalry between the three powers, especially as the climate has sorted itself out and Europe, Siberia, and upper North America open themselves up to resettlement once again. The empire is divided up into four viceroyalties: the Cape, the Raj, the East Indies, and Australia. Of the quartet, Australia is the most important and has had the most profound impact on the United Kingdom as a whole, with the native Aboriginal religion, Dreamtime, having surpassed even Christianity in popularity. Due to tensions rising between Sydney and Melbourne, the capital has been split, with Empress Victoria III residing in the former, and the Imperial Parliament in the latter. Speaking of which, every part of the empire technically has voting rights, even India, though the white elites have kept blacks and Hindi disenfranchised (Muslims, on the other hand, are free to vote).
Kingdom of France d'Outre-mer:
France is the world's second-rate power. With the second-largest navy and a short distance to travel, they managed to move four-fifths of their thirty-six million people across the Mediterranean and into North Africa. Algeria had been under their belt for decades, but that tiny bit of land was nowhere near enough to sustain all those people, so France began conquering everything in sight, swallowing up Tunisia and Morocco. Spain, already troubled and undergoing a civil war and financial crisis when the Fall occurred, largely collapsed, and fused with France. While they would have liked to continue spreading east to Aegyptia, the Italians had already taken control in Libya, so the French decided to continue west down the Atlantic Coast of Africa. Whereas Britain used genocide as a last resort, France was a bit more trigger-happy than that. Hundreds of thousands--perhaps even millions--of native Africans were murdered or forced off prime lands and into the Sahara Desert, all for the good of the Frenchmen. In 1887, the monarchy was restored once more, when the House of Orléans took charge and installed King Philip VIII on the throne. Seeking allies and with the racism of the Victorian Age fading, in the 1940s France began to marry into the royal houses of Africa, including Senegal, Aegyptia, and Ethiopia.
By 2032, France d'Outre-mer hasn't changed too much. Though there hasn't been a genocide against the natives in almost a hundred years, and in fact blacks are welcomed into the country, French culture, language, and religion is forced upon everyone who enters it. Catholocism is still powerful here, and alongside Italy and Portugal is among one of the only places a form of unadulterated Christianity is still practiced. France is at the forefront of the recolonization of Europe, and has sent many expeditions as far north as Paris and Frankfurt, though settlers are still hesitant to move north of the Mediterranean coast.
United American Realms:
Coming in third place on the global power scale, the United American Realms (UAR) is the successor state to the old republic, the United States of America. When the Fall happened, North America didn't just face eternal winter; a massive tsunami, the product of some of the larger meteorites crashing into the Atlantic Ocean, was the most immediate threat to survival. The tidal wave flooded the East Coast of North America, going as far as the Appalachians, where new lakes were formed by the seawater. Some of North America's most populous and important cities, like New York, Boston, Philadelphia, Montréal, Toronto, Baltimore, and Washington, were wiped off the face of the Earth. Luckily for the United States, President Ulysses S. Grant was visiting Ohio on June 16, 1876, leaving the legendary Civil War general to take charge. The entire might of the Union Army was summoned, as the US invaded and annexed everything from Sonora to Panama and Baja California to Cuba. Millions of Americans fled south, though a few factions stayed behind to prop up their own nations, including the Second Republic of Texas, the Republic of Sequoyah, the Mormon-led Theodemocratic State of Deseret, the Kingdom of Louisiana, the military junta-ruled American Union, a new Confederacy, and New Afrika, founded by a gaggle of black South Carolinian state leaders. But Grant and the US had bigger fish to fry than separatists, and continued their charge south, eventually conquering the entire Caribbean world by 1890.
Unlike the empires of Europe, who committed genocide against the people whose lands they took to escape the cold, the new USA, in control of land from California to Guiana, treated its new citizens rather humanely. Well, about as humanely as a Nineteenth Century white power can treat its non-white subjects. All men could vote, regardless of skin color, though in many places this law was ignored and whites refused to let Hispanics exercise their Constitutional rights. Luckily, segregation ended with the Fall in the United States. The US also faced a huge influx of immigrants from the Great White North, as Canadians fled south from the coming blizzards, and took in many Europeans who decided halfway through their trip from the continent to Africa or India to just go to America instead. Though Grant fully intended to re-establish the Electoral College and the system of electing a president that had been tried and true since 1789, when he died unexpectedly in 1899, that dream died with him. A democracy was deemed too unstable in times of chaos like those after the Fall, and a new Constitutional Convention was called in Santa Fe. There, the American experiment was ended forever, and the United American Realms was formed. The UAR selected Charles I of the House of Habsburg as their king, and he married Mary, Princess Royal and Countess of Harewood in 1919. A new national capital was selected as well, what with D.C. being underwater: San Diego, District of Aztlán.
The UAR of 2032 is a unique place on the world stage, largely as a result of two things: its culture, and its religion. Ethnically, linguistically, and culturally, the UAR is a melting pot of the old US and of Latin America. English and Spanish are spoken equally, and many Hispanic and American traditions coexist (most prominently the Day of the Dead and Thanksgiving), while the cuisine is a fusion of American, Canadian, Mexican, and Chinese foods. What really sets the UAR apart from the rest of the world is its total rejection of Christianity. Following the Fall, Protestantism around the world saw a massive decline in supporters, as former followers turned to either the well-established Catholic Church (which later fused with the Italian government to form a theocracy) or to find their own answers. Nowhere was this more prevalent than in the Western Hemisphere. A new religion, dubbed Columbianism, found its start in 1889, the centennial year of George Washington's election to the presidency. With the Centennial celebrations in 1876 being spoiled by the apocalyptic hellstorm from the skies, America decided to instead celebrate that year. What spawned from those celebrations was a new religion, one which saw great American men like Washington, Jefferson, and Lincoln as prophets, speaking not the word of the Abrahamic deity "Yahweh," but of the true Goddess, Lady Columbia. Columbianism soon dominated the UAR, and now spreads across the entire Americas, from New York to the Cone.
While Christianity faced a massive loss in followers after the Fall, Islam was given just the opposite. Millions of new believers in the works of Muhammad entered into the fold, fleeing the collapsing nations of Europe and into the awaiting arms of the Ottoman Empire. But while the Sultan welcomed the new immigrants through the Straits of Constantinople, this resulted in a severe strain on the already weak internal workings of the Sick Man of Europe. In 1883, violence broke out all across the Ottoman Empire as people demanded food and housing, things in short supply since the Fall. While the Ottomans were doing everything they could, they simply didn't have enough resources. In response, a revolution occurred, and the Ottoman Caliphate was abolished. In its place rose the Sharifian Caliphate, ruled directly by the Sharif of Mecca from the Holy City. The Caliphate began a series of sweeping reforms, and mobilized for war against Rus'ia, Aegyptia, and Persia, all of whom weren't in shape to do much of anything to fight back. Trade deals benefitting only Mecca were established in the aftermath, as the Sharifians expanded into Arabia.
In the modern day, the Sharifian Caliphate is a quintessential part of trans-Afro-Eurasian trade. Persia is little more than a vassal of the empire, and Mecca looks to annex it fully in the near future, as a part of its mission to fully unite the Islamic world once more. The Khanate of Rus'ia, in the meantime, is slowly but surely converting to Islam as the Caliphate exerts more and more influence over it. The Sharif's main rival is, of course, Britain, who rules over a massive amount of Muslims and provides an alternative trade route from France to Nihon. Only time will tell who will win this cold war.
Empire of Nihon:
Before the Fall, Japan was little more than an isolated East Asian empire on the receiving end of bullying by the West. But in this brave new world, Nihon is a rising star, one that Britain, France, and America should be worried about. Immediately after the apocalypse came and went, every country on planet Earth decided to run south at any means necessary. But Nihon--the crazy, insane little Nihon--didn't. Instead, Nihon went to war. They swiftly invaded Korea and northern China, annexing huge swathes of land upon which to farm and attain resources. With the Qing heading south to Indochina, they accomplished this with little to no effort at all. When the cold came, Nihon learned to adapt and survive from native Siberians, who taught Edo their ways. From there, the tiny island nation became one of the most powerful countries around. By 2032, it had established an indomitable alliance with the UAR, the result of generations of intermarrying the House of Meiji with the House of Columbia-Habsburg. And as the world gets warmer, those territories in Manchuria and Korea grow more and more valuable by the day. In Nihon's crosshairs for future expansion is, of course, more of China. But they are also looking to stomp the life out of the Kingdom of España (clinging on in the Philippines and Taipei), to pick a fight with France d'Outre-mer and Siam over Indochina, and to maybe, just maybe, one day take over Great Britain.
Império Ultramarino Português
Kingdom of España
Khanate of Rus'ia
Kingdom of Italy
Pharaohonic Kingdom of Aegyptia
Empire of Brasília
United Empire of Austro-Germania
Second Republic of Texas
Kingdom of Louisiana
Theodemocratic State of Deseret
Republic of Sequoyah
Confederate States of America
Republican Empire of Patagonia
Republic of India
Republic of Bolivia
Kingdom of Peru
Kingdom of Persia
Kingdom of the Afghans
Democratic Kingdom of Olympia
Empire of Siam