Ferdinand and Isabella really didn't expect him to return anyway. Christopher Columbus's first voyage to the the West Indies happens as IOTL. The Santa Maria runs aground on the northern coast of Hispaniola and later Columbus decides to leave 39 men there to found the first Spanish colony La Navidad. On the return journey of the Pinta and Nina the ships are lost in a mid-Atlantic hurricane about February 14, 1493. There are no survivors. As for the Spaniards left at La Navidad, they treat the native Taino pretty badly and this results in the complete destruction of their small colony. I don't think that the Spanish would finance a follow-up expedition. It was difficult enough for Columbus to find support for the 1492 voyage... the complete failure for the ships to return means that the Spanish will assume it is impossible to make it to the Indies by sailing the Atlantic. Now, let's say that butterflies are kept at a minimum until Pedro Alvares Cabral by chance sights the coastline of OTL Brazil. I'm guessing his interactions with the natives there all follow OTL... they find Porto Seguro, a natural harbor, and anchor there. They stock up on water and food, do a little trading with the natives, hold Catholic mass, build a giant wooden cross and christen the land "Ilha de Vera Cruz" or the Island of the Holy Cross. In OTL Cabral thought that he had stumbled upon an island or archipelago which would prove strategic in the connection of trade between Portugal and the East Indies. I don't think that would change here either... there would be no reason to think they'd stumbled upon China or even a new continent at that point. Is there any reason to butterfly away the other Portuguese expeditions to Brazil from 1501-1503? For those of you unfamiliar with this part of history, Goncalo Coelho and Gaspar de Lemos sailed for Brazil in May 1501 in order to explore the landmass Cabral had stumbled upon. This expedition in OTL included Amerigo Vespucci, but ITTL I don't think he'd be an observer, as IOTL he was invited to join the expedition because of his earlier experience in exploring the northern shoulder of Brazil under the Spanish. In November 1501 Coelho and de Lemos discovers the Baia de Todos os Santos in OTL Bahia, by January 1502 they discover Ria de Janeiro or OTL Guanabara Bay, and in February 1502 they explore the coast of OTL Sao Paulo before returning to Portugal. It would be evident by September 1502, when these explorers return to Lisbon, that the Portuguese have stumbled upon an entire continent rather than a couple of islands. The landmass is appropriately named the Terra de Vera Cruz or "Land of the True Cross".I'm not sure if "Veracruz" becomes the new name of the Americas ITTL, but it's very possible. Interestingly enough, because of the Papal Bull Aeterni regis which grants all territory south of the Canary Islands under Christian rule to Portugal, the Portuguese have a legal precedent to claim this entire continent for themselves. Still, I wonder what other European explorers would be inspired to make voyages of their own to the West... In any case, Goncalo Coelho probably returns to Brazil in November 1503 and builds a fort at Porto Seguro where he leaves 24 men, the first official settlement of the Americas. I'd also like to include the 1504 French discovery of Santa Catarina island by Binot Paulmier, which he said was actually Terra Australis. That might lead to the name "Australia" being used for the Americas instead! But, his ship reached South America because of a storm, and it's so long after the POD that not butterflying such things becomes implausible. We've done this scenario before guys, but would anyone like to get a little more creative with it? What would the Italian Wars be like with no syphilis and OTL conquistadors fighting for the Spanish? Where might Cortez and Pizarro find themselves? Balboa? Magellan?