Alternate History


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The third trumpet sounded, and a great star fell from heaven, burning like a torch, and it fell on a third of the rivers and on the springs of waters.

The name of the star is called Wormwood; and a third of the waters became wormwood, and many men died from the waters, because they were made bitter.

The fourth angel sounded his trumpet, and a third of the sun was struck, a third of the moon, and a third of the stars, so that a third of them turned dark. A third of the day was without light, and also a third of the night.


Welcome to Wormwood, an open community timeline that explores our world in the aftermath of a colossal asteroid impact.

With the world looking towards the stars in the summer of 1969 for the landing of the first men on the moon, more startling news rocked astronomers as they discovered a five km asteroid falling towards Earth. With its speed and sudden appearance giving mankind no time to react, the impact sent the world cascading into a spiral of death, violence, hunger and struggle as civilization collapsed in the wake of meeting this heavenly body.

Now, over forty years later as civilization scrambles to rebuild itself, new powers and new trials are beginning to reveal themselves in the wake of this planet's first collapse, the survivors of the impact and their descendants walking out into a new world.

As this is a collaborative timeline composed of any users willing to support it, please fell free to help us expand and grow this world with respect to the Editorial Guidelines.


The date was 20 July 1969; the first time man had stepped upon the surface of the moon. For the past decade both the United States and the USSR had been fighting amongst each other for the technological capability to become the first nation to place their flag on Earth's only satellite, this 'space race' being projected on the backdrop of a greater Cold War which focused most peoples attentions towards foreign events. For the few who had looked up to the stars every night however, something greater would soon present itself that would destroy not only their perception of the world, but also the world itself.

It was believed to be around five km (3.1 miles) in diameter, and although the astronomers and scientists who observed it did not know its precise measurements they were more and conscience that its growing magnitude indicated that it was moving closer and closer to Earth at a rapid speed. Having been discovered only minutes after the touchdown of the Apollo 11 lander, it soon refocused most observers attentions away from the historical events occurring on the moon towards what was suppose to be an insignificant rock in space, more and more eyes turning to it as it became brighter in the night and daytime skies.

It would be only fifteen hours that would pass until the heavenly body was in full view of even those who lived underneath the bright sun, the luminescent asteroid shining in the sky like a second star as the astronomers who so cautiously counted down the minutes began to panic at the sight of this behemoth in the heavens. Measurements of the asteroid across the world continued to be taken as government leaders were advised on the celestial body, the astronomers who devoted their lives to looking towards the stars claiming that no matter where this 'wandering star' landed on Earth, it would have adverse affects across the entire planet, and although there were some detractors during this moments of growing panic who didn't fear the space rock, the majority of experts had feared it as dangerous and deadly. They would soon be proven correct.

At UTC 15:32:51 on 21 July 1969, only 18 hours after its discovery, the asteroid designated 1969 OM22 collided with the planet Earth over the Amazon Basin in Brazil, releasing the energy equivalent of 45 teratons of TNT as it rocked the world with the largest explosion seen in 35 million years. With millions of tons of debris and dust rocketed into the atmosphere, men and women around the world (and even those brave men who stood upon the moon) witnessed as their world was plunged into darkness after only a short explosion lit up the world brighter than a thousand suns, the sound wave that emanated from the place of impact being heard around the world. After several hours of immediate horror, the world plunged into a silence never before witnessed, nor experienced.

Over the following few months and years, the world began to grow cold, the land not affected by the immediate floods, fire-storms, or fallout from the impact becoming more stone-like to the touch. The world was becoming barren, the fields that once supported thousands were only supplying enough food to give life to a dozen, and as the snow descended on land where it had not fell in hundreds of years, the survivors of this catastrophe would soon have to come to grips with the fact that their world was giving up on them. Dust filled the skies, day in, day out, and even though they remained bright the aerosols that now peppered the heavens darkened the world significantly enough to see plants die in their millions, the animals that ate those plants dying off with the same ferocity, and those creatures that consumed those herbivorous animals were soon to fall into famine as well; creatures like man.

Through the following few decades, horror swept the world as even the first-world lands untouched by the immediate impact deteriorated into violence, hunger and death, most of the governments that survived the initial destruction falling during the darkest days after the event; civilization falling to its knees. Years continued to pass by in this manner, but slowly the an image of a world once passed began to crawl out of the dirt, the 500 million survivors and their descendants beginning to band together in a manner similar to the governments of old. Together, they began to build a new Earth out of the ashes and dust of a world still crippled by one day in 1969.

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Large Wormwood Blank Map


As Wormwood is an open timeline, it relies on regular contributions by users willing to help maintain quality articles that make up this universe. When users get to a certain level of frequent edits, additions and general contributions to the timeline they may apply to become a moderator; and whilst their powers may vary, all mods will have the powers to review proposals and select those worthy of graduation to the canon.


Chief ModeratorRichMill (Talk)

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