Monday, November 14, 2005

Melville's Moby Dick; Violence In Puerto Rico

November 14th, 2005

in 4004 BCE, the Presence isolated a small group of people in the middle east and began indoctrinating them with the values of the main galactic civilization. The people, known as Hebrews, were converted from a polytheistic religion to a monotheistic one, and many confusing dietary and cultural restrictions were placed on them.

in 1851, Herman Melville, a citizen of the North American Confederation, publishes what becomes a literary masterpiece, Moby Dick, a fantastical tale of his adventures in the N.A.C. merchant space navy. In particular, it tells of the hunting of a genetically modified whale on the seas of Mars' north pole, and the obsession of his captain in capturing it. It has remained a gripping read throughout the years.

in 1890, as the sun rises on the stark Utah wilderness, Colonel Beauregard T. Jackson resigns himself to his death, and determines to face it as a gentleman and a soldier. Walking straight and proud, he is brought to a pit and pushed inside. Rebel Mormon Charles Brigman and 5 of his band ring the pit, guns pointed at Jackson. Just before Brigman gives the order to fire, a troop of federal soldiers led by Corporal Jeremiah Massey falls upon the Mormons and captures them. Colonel Jackson looks up from the pit into Corporal Massey's smiling face and says, “Nicely timed, sir.”

in 1919, Hollywood bombshell Constance Keane was born in Brooklyn, New York. Although her beauty captivated audiences in the 30’s and 40’s, the dearth of her film roles at the end of the 1940’s proved that Hollywood’s love for blondes was fickle at best. Her career was essentially over after 1951, and she died in 1973 of hepatitis.

in 1951, in an effort to destabilize Soviet American control of the hemisphere, Russia begins giving economic and military aid to the communist nation of Nicaragua. Nicaraguan leaders had expressed a desire to become independent of Soviet support, and many in the capitalist world were all too happy to attempt to wean them from the Americans.

in 1964, G. Edward Wier, the Texas Impresario, is born in Madisonville, Texas. Wier had been struggling with a writing career in his twenties when he turned to the other side of business in 1993. His work as an agent helped launch the careers of such notable literary luminaries as Charles Pitman, Oscar Rodriquez and Martha Boll, establishing central Texas as a literary Mecca.

in 1979, President Jimmy Carter of the U.S. froze all Iranian assets in America and American-controlled banks. This bargaining chip was what allowed him to negotiate the release of the 63 American hostages that Iranian students had taken at the U.S. Embassy in Tehran. The release of these hostages in mid-1980 guaranteed Carter’s reelection.

in 1993, the U.S. commonwealth of Puerto Rico, long a hotbed of sedition, erupts in violent confrontations with American troops there to keep the peace. The citizens of the island had held a referendum approving independence, but the U.S. didn't recognize the results. This battle between the small island nation and the superpower was the final chapter in Puerto Rico's long road to freedom.

in 2002, Professor Thomas and Air Force Captain Trent Laughlin find another inhabitant of the robot ship they are hurtling towards the center of the galaxy inside. This small creature seems to like Captain Laughlin, and spends much of its time rubbing against the Captain's leg. Laughlin finds it oddly soothing.

in 2004, Chelsea Perkins has her first meeting with the danger facing her; at the Great Tree, she enters into a trance as part of a lesson, and Elsbeth Danwich contacts her mentally. Danwich offers young Miss Perkins a chance to forgo the hard work of learning the ancient crafts, and simply join up. Miss Perkins, though highly tempted, refuses, and pops out of the trance to find her father trying to revive her from a deep coma.

Christmas Day Contest! Following up on our Halloween contest, you can enter our next contest, which will be alternate histories for Christmas Day, December 25th, 2005. The same rules will apply, the top ten entries will be posted on that day, and by entering, you grant TIAH the right to electronically print your writing on October 31st, 2005, maintain your writing in our archives, and reprint your entry should we decide to reuse it in the future. TIAH only maintains full copyright over material it has originated that has been used by contestants in writing their own entries. Enter early and often - entries must be received by December 20th, 2005! Email us up to 3 entries of your best alternate Christmas Days!

We still have our standard offer - everybody who donates $10 or more through our Paypal link will become alternate history entries on the site. When you donate, I will email you asking your preference for a day & timeline; if you don't reply to me, I'll place you in a day that seems to fit your name :) Thanks for your continued support!


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3 comments:

Writer said...

I remember the Presence from last year. Why didn't you go on it?

Robbie Taylor said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Robbie Taylor said...

I may do some more - depends on how much of my notes on it I can fit into this format.

TIAH Editor says we'd like to move you off the blog, if you're browsing the archives - and most people are - more than half of them are already on the new site. We need to be sure the new web site accomodates your archive browsing needs because we don't want to lose any readers. Please supply any feedback or comments by email to the Editor and please note the blogger site is shutting on December 1st.