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Literature / Face the Storm

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Face the Storm: QAnon and the Presidential Election of 2024 is an Alternate timeline written by Ulysses Orbis. Members of the site can read it here. It is also available on Fiction Press here.

The timeline begins Twenty Minutes In The Future with the election of 2020, where Democrat Bernie Sanders ends up beating Trump by a rather big margin. Trump proves to be no Graceful Loser and accuses Sanders of winning through fraud. Despite this, Sanders manages to take the presidency with even the Republican establishment accepting the outcome.


Unfortunately, this event leads many Republicans voters to feel betrayed. With Trump disgraced, former supporters engage in various acts of domestic terrorism and ultimately find a new figurehead in the form of Q (no, not that one though he does make an appearance in one installment); not that one either). Q uses his increasing popularity to mount a bid for the presidency in 2024...and things only get worse from there.

The timeline originally began as a trilogy in a thread of mock wikiboxes, with an added epilogue covering the aftermath of the final installment. An update titled 'Soon Says a Whisper, Arise, Arise' was added in September 2019 featuring an 1820's version of Q known as Quintilianus gaining traction.


Face the Storm contains the following tropes:

  • The Anti-Christ: Implied to be Q's true identity. He has his followers get a tattoo clearly intended to be the Mark of the Beast, brings about an apocalyptic scenario and rules over the ashes. It's also implied that he has some connection to Michael Langdon, with one person in-universe even claiming Langdon to be Q himself, though Word of God says he's just connected.
  • Apocalypse Cult: The global community sees Q and his regime as a death cult by 2040. Inspired by him, Qheads launch terror attacks worldwide, most notably bombing the Vatican when the Pope condemned Q's actions. In response to this, draconian censorship policies are imposed to stop the rise of a Q-like demagogue.
  • Apocalypse How: Q inflicts a Class 0 by the end by nuking Chicago, Washington DC, Boston and all of California to quell rebellion against his rule. Escalates to a Class 1 by the end, as Q continues to inspire global terrorism worldwide, the economy is in shambles and Q uses more nukes on both US cities and on the neighboring nations of Canada and Mexico.
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  • Black-and-Grey Morality: While Q has established a totalitarian regime over America by 2040, the rest of the world isn't that different. They impose stricter measures to ensure a Q-like figure does not rise to power in another country.
  • Blatant Lies: Q relies on these pretty heavily, but special mention must go to Alex Jones' interview with Russia Today that serves as an epilogue to the timeline. Jones claims the nuclear weapons were used by the Deep State in a desperate attempt to hold power and that they were launched by Sanders, who he also claims is still alive. In addition to all of this being false, it is a clear case of fabrication by Jones rather than belief in the wrong thing as he was actually in the room when Q ordered the nuclear strikes on California, Chicago and Washington DC. This bit was explicitly inspired by the Syrian government's denials of chemical weapons usage in their civil war.
    • Mitch McConnell outright blames the massacre of Democrats in Congress on radical Islam, even claiming that people heard the attackers shout 'Allahu Akbar!' It is pretty clear this is just an attempt to push back on claims of the Republicans enabling domestic terrorism.
  • Co-Dragons: Q's chief enforcers are Alex Jones, the notorious conspiracy theorist and far-right radio host who becomes the Secretary of State and congressman Matt Gaetz (R-FL), who becomes the Vice President. By 2030, Q purged his entire cabinet so they won't become potential threats.
  • The Consigliere: Disgraced general Michael Flynn, who becomes Q's most rabid supporter and Evil Genius.
  • Composite Character: One of the Q's in "The Morning Will Come When The World Is Mine" is apparently a part of the Q Continuum and counts both the canon Q and the Borg as his servants.
  • Child Eater: A key belief of Q and his followers is that the Democrats are devil-worshipping "pedovores."
  • Church Militant: Q's supporters are often very fundamentalist. 'My Friend the Witch Doctor' depicts the Q regime blaming a pandemic on witches who are sentenced to summary execution on the basis of consorting with demons.
  • Conspiracy Theorist: Q and his supporters think a secret cabal of child-eating Satanists control the world and undermined Trump while he was president.
  • Crapsack World: By 2040, America becomes a fascist Wretched Hive under Q, whose identity remains unknown. It has become a pariah in the international community, and Q's actions forced governments to crack down on fake news and extremism even more.
  • Dark Messiah: Q literally serves as one in one portion of 'The Morning Will Come When the World is Mine', where he takes the place of Jesus. The implications of that setting are troubling to say the least. By 2040, the QAnon conspiracy has expanded worldwide, forcing governments to impose Chinese-style censorship to crack down on extremist content.
  • Days of Future Past: 'My Friend the Witch Doctor' shows Q's America has brought back literal witch hunts.
  • Emergency Authority: Q establishes a dictatorship after nuking out the cities and states who opposed his regime in 2025. By 2040, the Constitution was suspended so Q can run unopposed in every election.
  • Evil States of America: As time progresses, America becomes a dictatorial regime under Q, who remains The Faceless thanks to cutting off trade with the outside world. Q's actions make Nazi Germany, North Korea, or Soviet Russia look tame. The government controls everything, while citizens are now given numbers and are forcibly implanted with a microchip that brainwashes them to hear only Q's propaganda. Individuals who don't are killed by the regime.
  • Face–Heel Turn: For a given value of 'Face,' but Tom Cotton is the main opponent of Q in the primaries and picks up support from most Republicans opposed to the lunacy of his candidacy. However, when Q gains enough delegates to become the presumptive nominee, Cotton concedes defeat and declares he will do all he can to make Sanders a one-term president, endorsing Q by implication. Additionally, even before that, he began accusing Sanders of treason in an attempt to win support over Q from primary voters.
  • The Faceless: We never learn Q's true identity. His appearances at debates and rallies is done via laptop and voice modulator. His RNC speech adds a hologram in the shape of Q to this. Even after taking over the US and ruling with an iron fist for over a decade, nobody knows who Q really is.
  • Fallen States of America: A news article posted by The Guardian states how America went from being the world's superpower to a rogue state in a short time. The use of authoritarian measures to control the populace are documented by defectors. The sole POC between the US and the rest of the world is a lone man in the Geneva embassy as of 2040.
  • Greater-Scope Villain: Russia is implied to be this, as they support Twitter bots backing Q and help fabricate evidence against Sanders. However, it is never outright confirmed and Q ultimately is demonstrated to be Eviler Than Thou if that was the case.
  • Heel Realization: Outgoing President Kevin McCarthy realizes just before his execution just how badly he screwed up by allowing Q's coup to go ahead and install him as president (as Q has just declared he will be nuking all of California, including McCarthy's hometown of Bakersfield). His last words are begging God for forgiveness.
  • Historical Domain Character: The update titled 'Soon Says a Whisper, Arise, Arise' features a lot of these due to being centered on an 1820's version of Q. Andrew Jackson, John C. Calhoun, Samuel Morse, Aaron Burr and John Quincy Adams are all relevant figures.
  • Historical Villain Upgrade:
    • Many Republican politicians who thus far have never so much as acknowledged Q become fervent backers of his during the 2024 election. Admittedly a mild example.
    • Averted with George W. Bush, as he is the only ex-president that is a member of the GOP to openly denounce Q.
    • Slightly worse example with PewDiePie, who is mentioned in passing as having endorsed Q despite being largely apolitical and having sought to move away from edgier content since 2016.
  • History Marches On: The timeline was made in 2019, before the conclusion of the 2020 Democratic primary and depicts Bernie Sanders holding the White House after the 2020 election as well as widespread violence between the election and Inauguration Day. In real life, the presidency instead went to Joe Biden and while the transfer of power was not wholly peaceful (the US Capitol insurrection of January 6 stands out as evidence of the contrary for instance), it was not as deadly as the version depicted in Face the Storm.
    • While Trump purges several of his Cabinet officials when they discussed invoking the 25th Amendment to remove him from power in this timeline, several actually resigned en masse after the Capitol riots in shame.
    • Trump also keeps his Twitter account in Face the Storm, but in real life, he's been permabanned by all social media companies following the Capitol riots. He also does self-pardon before he's forcibly removed from power, but doesn't do so in IRL despite pondering on the ideanote .
    • The timeline was also made before the release of the HBO documentary Q: Into the Storm, which seems to have revealed the identity of Q. Needless to say, Face the Storm's Q is most likely not Ron Watkins.
    • The prominences of Liz Cheney and Matt Gaetz in 2024 in Face the Storm is something that can be contrasted with actual 2021 events in their careers-the former basically lost all political standing after voting to impeach Trump and the latter seems likely to be facing possible criminal charges for statutory rape and having sex with a minor.
    • Andrew Cuomo is still the governor of New York in 2024, but IRL resigned in 2021 due to being accused of groping women while in office.
    • Rush Limbaugh is alive in Face the Storm, but IRL he died of lung cancer in 2021.
    • The Oathkeepers become one of the key far-right gangs who support Q and its leader Stewart Rhodes heads up the Department of Homeland Security. IRL, the Oathkeepers (along with other far-right extremist groups like the Proud Boys) are facing internal turmoil and dissension among the rank-and-file since the Capitol riots, as many have been arrested (and some have pulled a Joe Valachi).
    • In Face the Storm, Trump is forcibly removed from the White House on his last day in office. IRL, he was a no-show at his successor's inauguration as he left for Florida earlier that day due to his lingering bitterness on losing the 2020 election.
  • Hope Spot: Sanders manages to defeat Q in the presidential race and by a rather hefty margin in both the popular vote and electoral college. Unfortunately, Q not only fails to concede but encourages his supporters to engage in acts of violence and domestic terrorism to force the electoral college to make him president. Multiple Republican governors in states Sanders won attempt to declare Q the victor and accuse him of voter fraud (bolstered by a deepfake of Sanders admitting to rigging the election). Q's efforts do ultimately fail and Sanders is certified as the winner. And then members of the Secret Service assassinate both Sanders and Baldwin, making Republican Speaker of the House Kevin McCarthy president. Once they massacre Democrats in Congress, Q ends up elected Speaker of the House by the remaining Republicans and thus he is on track for the presidency. Q then goes on to purge anyone he deemed disloyal, including McCarthy, who tacitly approved Q's putsch.
  • Ignored Expert:
    • On the Electoral College certification in 2024, Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez urged Speaker Hakeem Jefferies to beef up security outside the Capitol to prevent pro-Q thugs from interrupting the proceedings, but Jefferies dismissed her claims. Q's supporters, alongside a rogue unit of Marines, do end up massacring all Democrats in Congress on January 3 in order to as part of the plan to make Q president.
    • Downplayed with several Fox News employees, who feel that a Q presidency would be disastrous for everyone and tacitly root for Sanders. On the flip side, they also fear a drop in TV ratings and possible death threats if they oppose Q. Sure enough, Q does takes over via outright violence in 2025.
  • Intercontinuity Crossover: Michael Langdon is apparently a real person in this timeline and is accused of being Q by one CNN guest. He isn't per Word of God, but a quote from him in the timeline implies he knows what Q is going to do.
    • John Titor is also a real person in this universe.
    • "The Morning Will Come When the World Is Mine" takes this to its peak, as versions of Q overtake Middle Earth, the Enterprise and allow Jadis to destroy Charn. The last part features Rick Sanchez destroy a world overtaken by Q and explain that Q appears and overtakes many universes, as well as the Citadel of Ricks' (losing) war with Q.
    • The Dixie Games post merges a southern victory world, The Hunger Games and Face the Storm.
  • Invincible Villain: Q seemingly cannot be defeated. There is no world established where Q appears that doesn't at least take power over a major part of the world and it often seems that Q is on the cusp of total victory.
  • I Reject Your Reality: On a society-wide scale. QAnon attracts a large chunk of the populace, believing that the world is controlled by Satan-worshipping "pedovores" who undermined Trump and worked to swing the 2020 election in favor of Sanders.
  • Kangaroo Court: Under Q, the courts are overseen by police commissioners who are free to railroad defendants on a whim. Criminal charges also now include things like consorting with demons thanks to Surgeon General/Witchfinder General Stella Immanuel.
  • Kill 'Em All: Q advocates for this towards the Democratic Party on the basis of false claims of pedophilia. His supporters end up inflicting this on almost all Democrats in Congress on January 3 in order to secure Republican control in both chambers and make Q president. Q then goes on to wipe out cities and purge anyone he deemed disloyal with an iron fist.
  • Loophole Abuse: The Republicans in Congress, after the Democrats are massacred, actually certify Sanders and Baldwin as the legitimate victors of the 2024 presidential election despite claiming up until now that they won only via fraud, citing 'the spirit of bipartisanship.' However, the fact that they are both dead means the Speaker of the House will become president and since the Speaker doesn't have to be a member of Congress, the House Republicans are able to make Q speaker, securing the same outcome as if they had just declared him president.
  • Maybe Magic, Maybe Mundane: While it's easy to read Q as being The Anti-Christ, nothing outright supernatural occurs in the story or precludes Q from merely being a very, very batshit insane Dark Messiah.
    • "The Morning Will Come When the World Is Mine" seemingly confirms Q as a supernatural being as he claims numerous other worlds in a myriad of eras and is explicitly identified as inevitable.
  • Meaningful Name: Figures named John often seem to be opponents of Q. First there's John Titor in the main timeline, than the abolitionist John Brown in the 1820's and finally John the Apostle in the world where Q forms the basis for Christianity instead of Jesus.
  • No Celebrities Were Harmed: In the 'Dixie Games' post (set in world mashing up The Hunger Games, a southern victory in the Civil War and Face the Storm, several characters thinly-veiled counterparts to real-world individuals whose identities were changed.
    • Katniss Lawrence is meant to be an alternate version of Jennifer Lawrence with some of Katniss' background, but by position and reputation is akin to Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (albeit targeted by more vicious attacks).
    • Romulus Crenshaw is a clear stand-in for Dan Crenshaw.
    • Meghan Domenech is meant to be Meghan McCain.
  • Nuke 'em: Q nukes out several large US cities and all of California to violently suppress any opposition to his rule. He even nukes out Canada and Mexico to prevent governments-in-exile from forming.
  • Our Presidents Are Different: Several cases. Trump is largely a President Lunatic, claiming with no evidence Sanders only won because of voter fraud. Additionally, he is the only former president to support Q in 2024. Sanders is a President Iron as he continues to steadfastly support his progressive policy agenda and firmly oppose the radical fascist ideology embraced by Q. Kevin McCarthy has shades of being a President Evil given his complicity in Q's coup, but overall is more of a President Focus Group and President Puppet who goes along with what his party wants (though the outcome is the same). Q meanwhile is a mix of Evil and Lunatic, remorselessly nuking major American cities (in one case just because it's a liberal city) and appointing the likes of Alex Jones to his cabinet.
  • The Pardon: After he loses the 2020 election, Trump pardons himself and his cronies before he's removed from the White House. IRL, Trump doesn't pardon himself despite pondering on the idea, probably because of the legalese being murky and the self-dealing controversy that would come with it.
  • President for Life: Q declares himself as one by 2040.
  • Pædo Hunt: How Q uses this to orchestrate his rise to power, claiming that a elite, "deep state" cabal of pedophilic Satanists control everything.
  • Politically Incorrect Villain:
    • While not openly anti-Semitic, Q uses the alt-right triple-parenthesis used to denote Jews when discussing the pedophile conspiracy he claims is ruining the country and Sanders calls out anti-Semitic tropes as being rampant in Q's claims about Satanic pedophile rituals. Even though Sanders and Hungarian billionaire George Soros are dead by 2040, they are still seen as the bogeymen by Q, eerily reminiscent of Nazi use of anti-Semitic tropes to keep Hitler in power.
    • Pro-Q thugs and cops attack polling sites to effectively disenfranchise minority voters, knowing they'll go Democrat.
    • This is even more prevalent with Quintilianus, Q's 1820's counterpart who is more blatantly anti-Semitic, anti-Catholic and racist. He claims the conspiracy running the country is run by Pharisee bankers and accuses John C. Calhoun (an infamous proponent of slavery) of enabling slave revolts that will upend the social order by rejecting his claims.
  • Propaganda Machine: Q's chief enablers use Goebbels-esque propaganda to claim their enemies are devil-worshipping, child-eating elites.
  • The Purge:
    • Once Q is inaugurated in 2025, he violently purges any potential threat to his regime. Outgoing President McCarthy and the Joint Chiefs of Staff are executed to prevent a counter-coup, while several cities and even Canada and Mexico are nuked to stop governments-in-exile from being set up. As the years passed, many of Q's original backers such as Matt Gaetz and Alex Jones stopped making appearances and their profiles removed from the White House webpage, implying that they too were killed by Q.
    • Trump purges several of his Cabinet officials when they discussed invoking the 25th Amendment to declare him incompetent for the job.
  • Richard Nixon, the Used Car Salesman: A future edition, but still present.
    • Bernie Sanders is president with Tammy Baldwin as vice president.
    • Q's main rivals for the Republican nomination are Tom Cotton, Liz Cheney and Nikki Haley.
    • Q's campaign team is managed by conspiracy theorist Lionel Lebron, who also volunteers to be a ballot placeholder. Joy Villa (a singer best known for wearing a Make America Great Again dress to the Emmys) is Q's press secretary and Congressman Matt Gaetz is his running mate. After he wins, he appoints Alex Jones as Secretary of State with Kaitlin Bennett (the Kent State open carry advocate) as his deputy, Michael Flynn as the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, and Stewart Rhodes becomes Secretary of Homeland Security.
    • Michael Flynn shows up as an ardent supporter of Q who takes the leading role in Q's coup effort by recruiting pro-Q members of the US military and Secret Service to participate.
    • Celebrities such as James Woods, Roseanne Barr, Notch and Curt Schilling, and YouTube personalities PewDiePie and Logan Paul openly endorse Q.
    • David Miscavige is alluded to in passing- Joy Villa (a Scientologist both in real life and the timeline) tells him (and presumably the rest of the Church higher-ups) to evacuate before Q nukes California.
    • The man behind the dril Twitter account of all people also is relevant to the timeline, as he ends up being Q's opponent in the 2028 presidential election. He loses and it's pretty much said that Q had no legal opposition in every election afterwards.
    • This is even more omnipresent in 'Soon Says a Whisper, Arise, Arise' due to being set in the 1820's.
      • Andrew Jackson dies of pneumonia shortly after losing in 1824 to John Quincy Adams. His death and claims Adams had him murdered is key to Quintilianus (the 1820's Q) gaining popularity.
      • Aaron Burr and Samuel Morse both become key promoters of Quintilianus' writings and claims.
      • John C. Calhoun attempts to challenge John Quincy Adams without embracing 1820's!Q, denouncing him as a dangerous demagogue who will discredit opposition to Adams.
      • The death of William Morgan which helped launch the real-life Anti-Masonic Party is here used to boost Quintilianus, to the dismay of historical Anti-Mason Thurlow Weed.
      • James Wilkinson, a general later discovered to have been a Spanish spy in real life, embraces Quintilianus and becomes his running mate in 1828.
  • The Remnant: After McCarthy becomes president and fires Sanders' cabinet, members of that cabinet declare Secretary of State Jake Sullivan to be the acting president on the basis that McCarthy's decision to fire them was unconstitutional because McCarthy's complicity in the attack on Congress made him unfit to be president. His claim is backed by the states of California and New York at minimum. When Sullivan is assassinated, the role of acting president passes on to Attorney General Larry Krasner, who flees to California. He retains these states' support and also is supported by every former US president still alive except for Trump. When California is wiped off the map, Veterans' Affairs Secretary Jason Kander sets up shop in Canada, which is wiped out when Q nukes that country. Chicago had been nuked by Q to prevent Barack Obama from doing the same. Q then kills off outgoing president McCarthy and the Joint Chiefs of Staff from doing the same as well.
    • The last point of contact between the US under Q and the rest of the world is a single man in a Geneva embassy as of 2040.
  • Right-Wing Militia Fanatic: These grow in number and damage after Trump loses in 2020 and become a huge problem in 2024, with Q being their Dark Messiah. After Q is defeated, they launch a full-scale insurrection, with the Oathkeepers and rogue elements in the armed forces outright overthrowing various state governments and massacring numerous Democratic members of Congress. They even go so far to kill potential enemies of the Q regime. The Oath Keeper leader Stewart Rhodes becomes Secretary of Homeland Security in Q's cabinet. By 2040, Qheads launch terrorist attacks worldwide, forcing the global community to adopt draconian measures so a Q-like Dark Messiah doesn't pop up elsewhere.
  • Shout-Out: Quite a few.
  • Skewed Priorities: Maryland Governor Larry Hogan identifies the biggest concern affecting the country in 2024 as...the federal budget deficit in a cycle where increasing numbers of Republicans are embracing far-right conspiracy theories.
  • Stable Time Loop: Word of God is that John Titor is in something similar to one, as his efforts to prevent Q from coming to power are doomed to failure, but he can alter exactly when it happens.
  • Sore Loser: Trump is much worse than IRL, as not only does he accuse Sanders of gaming the 2020 election, he also self-pardons himself (something he pondered upon in real life but never did so), purges his entire Cabinet when they discussed invoking the 25th Amendment, and holes himself up in the White House on his last day in office (though he's forcibly escorted out).
  • Token Good Teammate:
    • The only named Republican who explicitly denounces Q as his coup unfolds is former President George W. Bush. It's implied there are other Republicans who called out Q, but most have embraced QAnon and/or are too afraid to stand up to Q.
      • It becomes a general theme within the GOP, as those who dare challenge Q or call him out quickly get shelved (forced into early retirement). The GOP tried blocking his candidacy for 2024 but gave up when threatened by pro-Q thugs.
    • Implied with Chief Justice John Roberts, who was a no-show at Q's inauguration by calling in sick due to his lingering doubts on Q's legitimacy.
    • Downplayed with Fox News employees. While they hate their network's increasingly pro-Q content and don't agree with Sanders' socialist policies, they secretly root for Sanders as they feel that a Q presidency would be disastrous.
    • 'The Morning Will Come When the World is Mine' features a Q (known as Koppa) who replaces Jesus in the New Testament. The apostle who betrays him is not Judas, but instead John, who ends up becoming the Wandering Jew and seeks to aid China in holding back the followers of Koppa.
  • The Unreveal:
    • Even Q's most rabid supporters are in the dark on who he really is. They think it's a rotating identity passed around squabbling bureaucrats. Others think he's a paid hack for the Democrats or a psyop set up by the KGB. The confusion on Q's true identity has caused real people to be doxxed by trolls and Internet sleuths, while also raising eyebrows on whether he is legitimately qualified to become the Republican nominee for 2024. Q refuses to reveal who he is, claiming that the "deep state" will kill him if he came out in the open. Even when he adopts different names in different timelines, Q masks his true identity.
    • As with Q, John Titor is actually the pseudonym of a man who tries to stonewall Q's efforts to come into power to no avail, but can alter exactly when it happens.
  • You Are Number 6: As described by refugees, those living in the United States receive only numbers and must be tattooed with the Triple Q on their forehead.

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