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Web Original / A Golden Island To The West

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“‘California is – and must always be – a refuge of justice and opportunity for people of all walks, talks, ages and aspirations – regardless of how you look, where you live, what language you speak, or who you love.’ While the country around us has changed drastically overnight, our values as Californians have not changed, and we will defend those values.”
Jerry Brown

A Golden Island to the West is a timeline and novel posted on AlternateHistory.com and written by Crunch Buttsteak. The premise of the story is about Alien Space Bats sending a California that’s 20 Minutes into the Future back in time to 1850, the day that California originally joined the Union, right after the Fugitive Slave Act was passed and when the chain of events leading to the Civil War started.

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The story can be found on AlternateHistory.com right here or here if you don’t have an AH.com account.

The story has a character sheet, and it could use a hefty dose of Wiki Magic

This story provides examples of:

  • 20 Minutes into the Future: The story starts out on Election Night 2018 before the Mass Teleportation event occurs.
  • Alien Space Bats: the entire premise of the story was that the titular ASB’s whisked California away from 2018 to 1850 at the start of the story.
  • Crapsack World: The United States that California left behind us heavily implied to be this, with the Trump Administration’s first year being worse than our future.
  • Curb-Stomp Battle: The Imperial County Sheriff’s Department vs the remnants of JC Morehead’s Gila River expedition.
  • Deliberate Values Dissonance: Slavery. Modern Day California has a big problem with Slavery, to the point where they would rather vote for secession twice than be in a country that allows slavery.
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  • Divided States of America: At the start of the story, California voted to secede from the union. Later chapters hint that California will become an independent country.
  • Epic Fail: The sad case of Trump City, the response of a few diehard right-wing fanatics living in California. Basically, they tried to move and settle in Oregon, but a string of idiotic choices and lack of foresight and planning led to the whole thing collapsing.
  • Fee Fi Faux Pas: Averted by California Airlines by deciding to paint their planes sky blue rather than gold as not to offend China's Emperor when they start air service to China.
  • Fish out of Temporal Water: Several people from the 1850’s who come to modern day California, most notably John C. Frémont and Jessie Benton Frémont.
  • Gambit Pileup: The story is setting itself up to be one of these.
  • Gold Fever: To the people coming in to California in 1850, the one thing on their mind is gold.
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    • Also, when Chevron starts buying up land in Pennsylvania, people rush to claim land, believing that there is a treasure there.
  • Historical Domain Character: Par for the course for an alternate history story
  • Loads and Loads of Characters: A good chunk of the story is told through events involving POV characters, of which there are many.
  • Mass Teleportation: How 2018 California ended up in 1850.
  • No Endor Holocaust: Several scheduled airline flights left California shortly after the event unaware of what had happened. Fortunately, all of them turned around after failing to get a hold of air traffic control before they no longer had enough fuel to make it back to an airport in California.
  • Noodle Incident: The phantom hangover John C Fremont recounts
  • Reality Ensues: While California was in survival mode after the ISOT, ensuring what was left of the NTSB had proper equipment to do air crash investigations was not high a priority. It becomes a minor issue after the Maryland State Militia shoot down a civilian airliner.
  • Self-Insert: Some characters are this, especially if they have appeared on its Discord RP channel at some point.
  • Set Right What Once Went Wrong: Several people and groups are trying to fix what they perceive as mistakes made in history, some of these goals are outright contradictory.
  • Sliding Scale of Alternate History Plausibility: Type X at the start due to the time shift, Type I after that.
  • Underground Railroad: The trope namer appears in the snippet of the same name, and has expanded to smuggling escaped slaves onto airplanes bound for California.
  • Wiki Walk: Happens to both Henry Clay and Daniel Webster in The Devil’s Bargain.
  • Wham Episode: While relations between California and the United States have been going downhill throughout the story, Chapter 41 dramatically raises the stakes by having the Maryland State Militia manage to shoot down a civilian airliner.
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