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Literature / A Light In The Darkness

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A Light In The Darkness by vongreif, the author of Theocracy Empires Of Abominaton and co-written by Ephraim Ben Raphael, the author of The Falcon Cannot Hear is an ongoing Alternate History series in the Alien Space Bats sub-forum of AlternateHistory.com, started in spring 2015.

It can be read here and a chapter guide can be found here.

Not to be confused with A Light In The Dark.


Provides examples of:

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  • After the End: Most of the world is covered in ice and snow, and the sun has not risen in centuries outside of the Last Sea and the surrounding territory.
  • The Alliance:
    • Of the Utopian States, the American Oligarchy, the Brotherhood of Men and the Dictatorship of the Air against the Slavic Empire and the Amazon Collective. Unlike most alliances, it is worse than The Empire they oppose.
    • The Green Sultanates form one against the Cannibal Empire of Tzeng.
  • Amazon Brigade: The Battalions of Death of the Slavic Empire, a semi-monastic order of female soldiers whose officers all double as nuns.
  • Amoral Afrikaner: The Volksrjik is run by them.
  • A Nazi by Any Other Name: All werewolf clans to some degree, but especially the werewolves of the von der Gardekorps clan who are obsessed with racial purity.
  • Arcology: Each Redoubt.
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  • Artificial Human: The Decants.
  • Balance of Power: The Republic of Antarctica maintain one between the Cannibal Empire of Tzeng and its neighbours.
  • Big Creepy-Crawlies: The Coming Race are giant centipedes.
  • Black and Gray Morality: The Slavic Empire are far from being outright good guys, but they're definitely better than the Utopian States and their allies.
  • Black and White Morality: The world view of the Glorious Empire is based on this kind of morality.
  • But What About the Astronauts??: All major powers had moon bases. The inhabitants either destroyed each other in the war or starved to death within a decade after the fall of the night.
  • Clone Army: The combat decants of the Utopian States.
  • The Conspiracy: The Syndicate, the true ruler of the Utopian States.
  • Darkest Africa: Under-Africa, a continent-sized complex of subterranean abysses. After the fall of the night, much of the remaining African population escaped there.
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  • Dark Is Evil
  • Decadent Court: The Kotoran clan of the Dark Empire of the Iron Forest is known for holding elaborate balls.
  • Dirty Communists: The Brotherhood of Man are "populists", TTL's twist on communism that was inspired more by Jeffersonian democracy than Karl Marx. One major difference is that populism, unlike Marxism, is not internationalist, instead believing in racial segregation and anti-Semitism (scapegoating the Jews as the owners of the banks).
  • Elites Are More Glamorous: The Utopian States Rocketman Corps, the elite of the US forces is very prominence in Utopian propaganda. Other soldiers in the Utopian States military tend to resent them for their egotistical attitude.
  • The Empire: The Slavic Empire is a benign example.
  • Everyone Has Standards: The Cannibal Empire of Tzeng is despised by almost everyone.
  • Evil Versus Oblivion: Why Tsalmaayeth is opposed by the other Dark Gods.
  • Expendable Clone: How the Utopian States treats the decants. The Slavic Empire strongly disagrees.
  • Fantasy World Map: The world in 2628.
  • For Science!: The Utopian States are firm believers in it, but the Union of Darwinist States and the Republic of Antarctica have them beat in that regard.
  • Genocide Backfire: During the fall of the night, Chinese were locked out of the Chinese redoubts by Europeans and Japanese who left them to die. The Chinese survivors formed the Skylords of Han who still raid them in revenge for that.
  • Golden Age: The Halcyon Age of Progress, at least for the European and North American nations.
  • Good Republic, Evil Empire: Inverted. The "good guys" in the Slavic Empire are an absolute monarchy under the Tsar (albeit run by the military and intelligence services in practice given that the heir to the throne is missing), opposing republics who often enough represent the worst of mankind.
  • Hidden Elf Village: The British live in them.
  • Holy City: Jerusalem and Rome in the Slavic Empire. The latter's holy status saved it from destruction during the Great European War because the devoutly Catholic Danubian Empire did not want to destroy their holy city.
  • Humans Are White: Justified. Only the European and North American nations could afford building redoubts, and thanks to living without a sun, the people in the redoubts have become literally white.
  • Human Subspecies: Abhumans.
  • I Have Many Names: The Slavic Empire is also called Dominium Mundi, the Universal Monarchy, the Glorious Empire, the Empire of East and West Reunited, the Empire of the three Romes, the Last Empire, the Holy Roman Empire, the Second Kingdom, the Eurasian Empire, the Romanov Autocracy, United Christendom, the Slavic Imperium, the Empire of the white Czar, the Dominion of the little father, the Empire of all the Russias etc.
  • I'm a Humanitarian: Cannibalism is systematically practiced in the Cannibal Empire of Tzeng.
  • Last of His Kind: Emperor Rudolf II of Danubia and German Emperor Friedrich Wilhelm were the last Habsburg and Hohenzollern, respectively.
  • Lost in Transmission: The "Last voice in/from Germany" which is the last transmission from the German high command is full of static.
  • Mad Scientist:
    • Viktor Maximilian Theodore von Brennenburg aka the Mad Baron is the most infamous case and responsible for the fall of the night and the creation of the werewolves.
    • The Republic of Antarctica is ruled by them.
  • Made of Iron: The Stalins, almost literally. They have a ferrous skin which helps them to resist the ever-present radiation and they cannot be poisoned nor do they fall sick.
  • Mechanical Horse: The loshads of the Slavic Empire.
  • Mother Russia Makes You Strong: The Cossacks exemplify this. While they initially resented being kicked out of the Slavic Empire's redoubts for rebellion, they've come to embrace life on the outside, seeing the people living in the redoubts as having grown soft.
  • Not So Different: The Brotherhood of Man and the American Oligarchy. The former is a populist state, the latter a corporate oligarchy, yet both are vassals of the Utopian States, and use different ideological justifications for virtually identical caste systems. Their leaders recognize this fact, and thus maintain an informal friendship to try and check the Utopian States' power.
    "The modern [Brotherhood of Man/American Oligarchy] is a caste-based state, with the [American descended populists/Oligarchy and the mercenaries] ruling over a population [of Canadians/descended from the American labouring classes]. This is justified by the ['inherently reactionary'/'barbaric'] tendencies of the [Canadians/'lower orders'], whose tendencies to [monarchism, nationalism and other such things/populism, rebellion and other such things] mean that they are manifestly unfit for government and can safely be ignored. Of course, since [the Brotherhood has the best interests of progressive mankind at heart/the Oligarchy opposes wasting valuable economic assets], they cannot simply be exterminated. They are fit for manual labour, and are kept in a drugged stupor when not required."
  • Nouveau Riche: The von der Shrekenwald werewolf clan is rich thanks to being the main slavers of the Dark Forest, but are looked down upon by the other clans for their lack of history.
  • One Nation Under Copyright: The USA was dominated for much of its history by several massive trusts known as the Oligarchy. After the Syndicate took over, they continued to survive as The Remnant in the redoubts of New York, Arkham, and Richmond.
  • One World Order: The Slavic Empire wants to be one.
  • Our Demons Are Different: The nighthounds.
  • Our Vampires Are Different: They resempble the vampires in The Strain.
  • Our Werewolves Are Different: Human/nighthound hybrids who do not really resemble normal wolves, but Sammael from Hellboy (2004).
  • Our Zombies Are Different: The victims of the Black Ice are essentially ice zombies.
  • People's Republic of Tyranny: The Utopian States are downright dystopic.
  • The Political Officer: The Social Harmony officers of the Utopian States.
  • Racial Remnant:
    • Most Stalins are descendants of altered Germans who managed to reach the redoubts of the Russian Empire. They speak different German/Russian creole and are known for unpleasant, but very cheap foodstuff.
    • Bifrost employees are descendants of refugees from the Nordic countries.
  • Religion of Evil
    • The Cult of the Eternal Night in the Dark Empire of the Iron Forest.
    • The worship of the Dark Gods.
  • The Remnant:
    • The American Oligarchy is what remained of the old USA.
    • The Sultanate of Adiputera was reduced to this after losing the titular capital and most of the territory in the last war against the Tzeng.
  • Skeletons in the Coat Closet: The patriarch werewolves of the von der Fürst zu Schwarzenberg love to clothe themselves in bones.
  • Slave Mooks:
    • The combat decants of the US.
    • The slave-soldiers of the Tzeng.
  • Star Scraper: The towers of the redoubt cities. Even the lesser ones of Holy Mother Moscow, the capital of the Slavic Empire, are still several miles high.
  • State Sec: The Okhrana in the Slavic Empire.
  • The Theocracy:
    • The Mahdiyya, the largest green sultanate, is a post-apocalyptic version of the Islamic State founded by Islamic Malay.
    • The Slavic Empire is similar to the Eastern Roman Empire.
  • Tortured Monster: The werevolves of the Kluže clan are driven mad by the endless noise of the eternal engine in their castle.
  • Watching Troy Burn: The destruction of St. Petersburg for Russian Emperor Nicholas as shown in 'Fall of Eagles'.
  • Vestigial Empire: The British Empire. All that is left is the British Monarchy and the successors of Oxford and Cambridge, the Books and the Lions, who absorbed any other British remains.
  • Überwald: The Dark Empire of the Iron Forest is what remained of Danubia, the Austria-Hungrian empire.
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