Those who know me quickly discover that I have a passion for tabletop role playing games. I run three different, interconnected games at our shop that all take place in the same fictional universe. The idea for this began in September 2015 when Collin put the idea in my head of running a game at the shop. I decided to make my theme for that game a Rudyard Kipling/J.R.R. Tolkein mashup.
Set in a fictional version of 1872 India, complete with elves, orcs, halflings, and dwarves, this first game was a huge success. There was one thing though, I made the world far more progressive than in our own timeline. There were all sorts of queer relationships developing in the story and I started to wonder how such a world came into being.
In the spring of 2016, I got burned out and had to take a break from role playing games. When I decided recently to dust off the British Empire I’d created, I decided to do a more thorough job of explaining where all the little differences from our timeline came from. I decided that Elizabeth I and James I would be the turning points in the timeline. In this fictional universe, Elizabeth was a pioneering feminist who promoted women within her court to high levels of authority based on their merit. After her long reign came to an end, James continued this policy to help him find support among his new English subjects.
In our timeline, James I is alleged to have had homosexual affairs, but was an ardent and outspoken homophobe. In this timeline, however, he urged tolerance of homosexuals and used his position as head of the Church of England to promote that point of view, even going as far as to interfere in the translation of the King James Version of the Bible to promote acceptance, regardless of sexual orientation.
As a result of these changes, the English speaking world, including the United States, is far more liberal and progressive in this timeline than in our own. The rest of the world, however, is much the same.
I plan to begin posting fiction set in this universe. In broad strokes, I’ve made a timeline covering 1500 years and I look forward to sharing vignettes from this other universe with you all.