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December 2

Hilary Clinton

In 2007, on this day the Rochester, New Hampshire office of Reuters reported ~ A woman carrying fake explosives seized several hostages at Democratic presidential front-runner Hillary Clinton's New Hampshire campaign office on Friday before surrendering peacefully to end a tense standoff.

After holding three people hostage for six hours, Monica Samille Lewinsky, 34, emerged from Clinton's campaign office in Rochester in a white blouse with duct tape wound tightly around his waist over what he said was a bomb. 'It was for me and my campaign an especially tense and difficult day,' the New York senator and former first lady told reporters in New Hampshire. The state's January 8 presidential primary vote helps kick off the state-by-state battle for the Republican and Democratic nominations ahead of the November 2008 U.S. presidential election.

Hilary Clinton - US President
US President

New Hampshire State Police Col. Frederick Booth said Lewinsky had strapped highway flares to his body, held a detonator that gave the appearance she was holding an improvised explosive device and demanded to speak with Clinton. Clinton had offered to cooperate, Booth said, but police negotiators did not want her to talk with Lewinsky.

Police said there was no bomb. 'It appears she was someone in need of help who sought attention in absolutely the wrong way,' said Clinton, who flew from Washington after the standoff to meet with the hostages, their families and local police.

Clinton, who cancelled a speaking date in Virginia immediately after news of the incident broke, said she would stick with earlier plans to campaign on Saturday in Iowa. 'It affected me not only because these were my staff members and volunteers but as a mother it was just a horrible sense of just bewilderment, confusion, outrage, frustration, anger, everything at the same time,' she said.

Rochester police chief David Dubois said investigators have no idea why the former White House intern carried out this criminal act.

October 30
In 4646, Star Sailor Yang LiWei was born on the moon colony, the first child born there since it was repopulated after contact with the Chdo. Yang was the first human being to see the galactic core, traveling there in the experimental Chdo-Human hybrid vessel, the Black Swan.

October 30
In 1915, H.G. Wells opens his second Little Warriors role-playing convention, with a special scenario to be run by himself on Halloween night. Over 15,000 attendees flood the hall in London where the convention is being held, and even members of high society can't resist joining in. At this convention, the American company called Parker Brothers announces that they will be producing a role-playing game of their own based on the legends of King Arthur, called Knights & Castles. It sells like hotcakes at the convention.

October 30
In 1953, President Eisenhower approves National Security Council Action 162/4, which formally grants the power to [CENSORED][CENSORED][CENSORED], thus ending American democracy.

October 30
In 1975, King Juan Carlos begins his formal reign as ruler of Spain. True to his word to former dictator Francisco Franco, he maintains the fascist government, ignoring the entreaties of other governments and exiled Spaniards to transition Spain to a more democratic society.

October 30
In 2002, safely back in their stolen vessels, Dr. Courtney, Professor Thomas and their Air Force escort find themselves being approached by dozens of ships. They take off in a hurry, and advise the pilots in the other craft to stop for nothing. "We have to get back to earth with this," Dr. Courtney says of the globe they have stolen. The desperate humans begin a prolonged chase through the Pleiades to escape from the aliens.

October 30
In 1938, radio personality Orson Welles produces a radio show to provide cover for the arrival of his unearthly masters. Although millions of Americans see and struggle with the aliens that night, in the light of the morning, it is all proclaimed a simple hoax, with the simple-minded falling under the spell of Welles' dramatic talents. The aliens make contact with their other ally on the planet, a German by the name of Adolf Hitler, and supply him with power until the rebels among their own people find a way to bring him and his alien forces down.

October 30
In 1972, as night falls, the bear cultists come for the police officers and the academics trapped in the Montignac police station's jail. Sondra Laval leads them to the cell, chanting softly in the Sanskrit-derived language that is keeping the people of Montignac under the cult's spell. When the cell door is opened and the cultists seize the four outsiders, Professor Karl Ainsworth begins a counter-chant of his own, which is picked up by the other three. Mademoiselle Laval is confused, and halts her own chanting to listen to Ainsworth; the cultists take up the chant from Ainsworth and crew, and soon, the priest's niece is also chanting with them. After several minutes of this, Ainsworth halts the chant and Laval and the other cultists seem to come out of the trance they've been in. "Now, Mademoiselle," Professor Ainsworth says, "we have a special job for you".

October 31
In 1972, Sondra Laval, niece of the mad priest Father Vincent Laval, leads the Montignac villagers and Professor Karl Ainsworth, Dr. Yvette Montclair, and Officers Gerard Hortefeux and Patrice Orleans to the Lascaux cave, where Father Laval is waiting for them. "Now, my children, the Great Bear shall fill His belly and go back to the sleep of ages," he says to them, "while His children grow strong and we tend them for another generation, until one rises to take His place. Our sacrifices are nearly done; just these few more," he says, waving at the outsiders, "and myself". He begins chanting in the Sanskrit-derived language that has placed the citizens of Montignac under his spell, but Sondra Laval and Professor Ainsworth chant something else to the villagers, keeping Father Laval's control at bay. They follow the priest into the cave and to the forbidden passageway, where the huge, ancient bear waits. Father Laval goes back to the bear and strokes its great muzzle tenderly. "Soon, my Master, I shall be one with You". He turns to the villagers and points at Dr. Montclair. "Bring the woman first". Montclair raises a tranquilizer rifle and fires into the bear, saying, "I don't think so". Professor Ainsworth and the two policeman also fire tranquilizer darts into the bear, which roars and charges. Ainsworth and Sondra Laval shout at it in the ancient tongue, and it pauses, confused. "No, my Master," Father Laval screams at it, just as Officer Hortefeux shoots him with a dart. The others pepper the bear with more darts until it falls. Then, they turn their attention to the mad priest, who has crawled to the side of the bear and is trying to chant through the haze of the drug. "My Master shall destroy you all," the priest slurs out, "you shall taste their souls, Master. You shall..". The drug finally takes him, and he falls. Professor Ainsworth says to the villagers, "Let's get him out of here, then I say we seal this place up". He looks Dr. Montclair in the eyes and adds, "And the bear with it". She is conflicted about that for a moment, then nods. Concrete, rock, cement, anything that can fill a hole is brought from Montignac and the forbidden passageway, as well as the tunnel leading off to the bear's nest, are sealed so tightly that they might as well have never been open. As the dawn breaks over the French countryside, the people of Montignac and their guests step into the sunlight, smiling for the first time in weeks. Professor Ainsworth puts his arm around Dr. Montclair and says, "Happy Halloween".

October 31
In 605, in accordance to Pope Gregory the First's edict to his missionaries to Christianize pagan rituals, Brother Seanedd spoke to the pagans in Eire, stating Samhain was a ritual that worshiped the Christian God. The druids counciled, nodded wisely, and invited Brother Seanedd to be a part of that years celebration. That marked the first year a Christian was immolated in the Samhain Eve bone fires.

October 31
In 1517, Martin Luther, followed by acolytes, tries to impose his 95 theses in Wittenberg, Germany. Moments after he nails these theses at a church gate, he's struck by lighting in front of the whole town. Pope Leo X called this tragedy an act of punishment from God. "May the Lord forgive his heretical soul and may he finally realize that there?s only one truth", he said publicly.

October 31
In 1892, The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes was published. Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, a lifelong believer in the supernatural, created the character of Holmes as a vehicle for his occult beliefs. A detective who solved crimes via such methods as scrying, seances, and faerie assistance, Holmes and his trusted Boswell, mentalist John H. Watson, have become enduring characters that fascinate readers even today.

October 31
In 1926, Harry Houdini, hospitalized at Detroit's Grace Hospital for peritonitis following an injury received days earlier at Garrick Theater, receives a visit from a mysterious doctor who spends several hours alone with the injured escapist. When nurses and family check in on the injured performer later, they find him fully recovered with no sign of the mysterious doctor. Houdini is unable to recall the man's name or anything about the strange visit. After this time, the famous performer and debunker begins to inexplicably travel through the ancient towns of haunted Massachusetts; focusing special attention on the storied town of Arkham.

October 31
In 1926, Harry Houdini is released from the hospital. Houdini was hospitalized after being punched at a school twelve days before and having his appendix burst. This brush with mortality gave Houdini his biggest thrill to date and convinced Harry to push the limits more than ever before. In subsequent shows he had audience members shoot, stab, and poison him to show he could escape even from death.

October 31
In 1926, famed magician and escape artist Erich Weiss "died" of peritonitis from a ruptured appendix received two weeks earlier, when an overenthusiastic fan sought to test his ability to withstand blows by unexpectedly punching him in the abdomen. Weiss was interred in the Machpelah Cemetery, Queens, New York, but his grave was found torn open and empty the morning following his burial. In decades to follow, Weiss was spotted in formerly-empty prison cells at maximum-security penitentiaries, wrapped in anchor chains at major shipyards, and half-buried in concrete at construction sites. However, he has never been found and held successfully.

October 31
In 1929, St. Louis city officials announced that they wanted to establish something called trick-or-treat, where children would go door to door dressed in costumes begging for candy as an alternative to the traditional, (and increasingly destructive), pranks that were pulled every prior October 31st. This was the first year that children dressed in costumes assisted in the burning down of City Hall. The St. Louis City Hall was burned down 3 more times in the next 10 years.

October 31
In 1936, Bess Houdini is found dead on the roof of the Knickerbocker Hotel. One of a series of seances conducted on the anniversary of her husband's death, the event is shrouded in mystery. The only access to the roof was locked, and no buildings nearby could have permitted access. No official cause of death is ever released. One eerie piece of the puzzle that quickly spread through the grapevine: the seance table was shattered, the pieces and objects used scattered about the roof as if by some terrific force.

October 31
In 1987, Joseph Campbell, explorer of ancient myths, dies and is buried in Honolulu, Hawaii. That night, he appears in a dream to George Lucas, who conceives a new trilogy for his Star Wars saga based on the tales that Campbell brings to him from the other side; but, he has to tone down the Gungan that Campbell speaks of, because its horror is too much for an audience to take.

October 31
In 1887, inventor Karl Leiber originated the concept of Candy Corn, a small candy laboriously made of sugar, water, corn syrup, fondant, and marshmallow in three colored layers. The candy was intended to be a Halloween special, bringing to mind the changing colors of the fall and the old staple winter foods of the colonists. When he presented his ideas to the Wunderle Candy Company however, he was laughed out of the business.

November 1
In 1955, Pascal-Edison releases the Family Portrait operating system for home users of their difference engines. The scaled-down O.S. has less capabilities than the business version, and a much cheaper price tag. Pascal-Edison sells completely out of its initial stock and continues selling the product well through the end of the decade.

November 1
In 1924, in one of the most senseless murders of the Prohibition period, Comrade William Tilghman is murdered in Cromwell, Oklahoma, where he served as a local sheriff. Comrade Tilghman was in the vanguard of bringing socialism to the Wild West, and had a reputation as an honest and incorruptible lawman. He was brought down by his own sense of integrity when he refused to allow rumrunners free passage through Cromwell in exchange for a hefty payoff, and they shot him.

November 1
In 1604 & 1611, two of Francis Bacon's great plays make their premieres. Othello, the controversial story of a black man married to a white woman, nearly destroys Bacon's playwriting career; when The Tempest premieres in 1611, it just revives the old rumors of Bacon's flirtation with witchcraft, but he escapes prosecution this time.

November 1
In 2265 AUC, the crowning achievement of Roman artist Michelangelus Gaius Buonarus, the Temple of Jupiter, is opened to the public in Rome. The masterpiece of the artwork inside is the story of the creation of the Roman Pantheon of Gods, told in 9 panels of exquisite detail. It draws visitors from across the Roman Republic every year.

November 1
In 1765, in the face of harsh opposition to the Stamp Acts, the British Parliament backs down and repeals the effort to make the American colonies pay for the recent wars in North America without consultation from the colonies themselves. Parliament takes the unusual step of giving seats in the House of Commons to colonials, so that they can have representation for their taxation.

November 1
In 1890, more reinforcements arrive to bolster Colonel Beauregard T. Jackson's troops in Salt Lake City. Colonel Jackson takes these men into the wilderness surrounding the city on a search for escaped rebel leader Charles Brigman; he is determined that Brigman will pay the price for his crimes.

November 1
In 1952, the explosion of a hydrogen bomb on the tiny Eniwetok atoll in the Pacific Ocean causes the mutation of several creatures there, who soon grow to enormous size and attack the western coast of the United States. Only the grit of local military commanders and the plucky resolve of a 10-year old boy keep Los Angeles from being devoured by the monstrous beast they call Sharkon.

November 1
In 2002, in an asteroid field in a system they are completely lost in, Air Force pilots Jim Zeminksi and Al Corwin are taken by the Pleiadean force that has been chasing them since Dr. Courtney and Professor Thomas stole a globe from their planet. Since the pilots had become separated from the scientists and other pilots, they are unable to resist the aliens, and are taken back to the alien world and interrogated.

November 2
In 1800, two days before the general election, Aaron Burr challenges fellow Democrat-Republican Thomas Jefferson to a duel. Jefferson agrees to meet him on the field of honor and is mortally wounded by Burr, whom he misses with his shot. The turmoil among the Democrat-Republicans throws the election to the Federalists, giving John Adams a second term.

November 2
In 1824, Andrew Jackson wins the popular vote for the presidency, but after a series of disputed votes, the House of Representatives votes to elect John Quincy Adams, instead. Outraged, Jackson leads an army of volunteers on Congress and forces them at gunpoint to reverse their decision and name him to the presidency. Once in office, Jackson spearheads a movement to eliminate the Electoral College and allow the people to elect the president directly.

November 2
In 1880, one of the most narrow victories in American electoral history was won by Democratic candidate General Winfield Hancock against Republican John Sherman. From the beginning, Hancock was a polarizing force, reversing many of the hard-fought freedoms won by blacks during the Civil War. In Hancock's 4th month in office, an embittered soldier from Ohio shot him to death in Washington, D.C.

November 2
In 1920, Warren G. Harding, a 1st-term Republican Senator from Ohio, is roundly defeated by Democratic Governor James Cox, also of Ohio. Cox, however, doesn't live very long in office, and in 1922, his Vice-President, Franklin Roosevelt of New York, is sworn in to replace him. The young Roosevelt proves singularly ineffective at the office of the President, and doesn't even run for his own party's nomination in the 1924 election.

November 2
In 1890, scouts working for Colonel Beauregard T. Jackson find rebel Mormon Charles Brigman's camp and direct federal troops to it. In the hard fought Battle of Mercy Gully, 14 federal soldiers and 32 Mormon rebels are killed, with twice that number wounded on each side. Brigman's knee is shattered by a lucky shot from a soldier as the Latter-Day Saint flees the battle. In spite of the wound, the rebel's luck holds, and he escapes with a handful of his followers.

November 2
In 1948, Republican Thomas Dewey is defeated by incumbent President John Nance Garner. The vote was so close that many papers had printed a headline, Dewey Defeats Garner before all the votes were tallied. President Garner enjoyed showing off these papers in rallies he held later on.

November 2
In 1950, biologist W. Duncan Taylor III is born in Centerville, Texas. One of the pioneers of nanobiology, Taylor is credited with the creation of the molecular insulin pump for diabetics. He became interested in such a device after coming down with adult onset diabetes himself.

November 2
In 2000, Governor George W. Bush of Texas, Republican candidate for president, after evidence comes forward or more than one conviction for drunkenness in his past, tearfully pulls out of the race, leaving his running mate, Richard Cheney of Wyoming, as the party's candidate. Cheney is no match for Democrat Al Gore, who wins the election in a rout; Cheney only takes Wyoming, and Gore becomes the first president elected with 60 million votes.

November 2
In 2002, Air Force Captains Jim Zeminksi and Al Corwin are broken by alien interrogation in the Pleiades, and tell everything that they know. Fortunately, they can only describe most of what Professor Thomas and Dr. Courtney have stolen, because they have no idea what the devices do. Back with the rest of their stolen vessels, Professor Thomas and Dr. Courtney are very concerned; they know that no human can withstand Pleiadean questioning. They decide that the two pilots have to be rescued.

November 3
When the hour she had been promised was up, Janice pulled her cell phone out and called up the auto service again. She was a little steamed, and let the poor customer service rep have it. "In my business, when I promise a customer something within the hour, I mean the hour we were currently talking in," she spit at the young woman on the other end of the line.
"I do apologize, ma'am. It's been a busy morning for our - "
"I don't care about your problems. I care about mine. If I don't have some service this hour, I'm going to be taking my business elsewhere".
"I'll do what I can, ma'am".
Janice hung up and threw the cell back into her purse. A very small part of her felt bad about yelling at someone who was essentially powerless to do anything about her situation, but most of her felt better after venting the anger and frustration. The cat was back, purring and approaching her legs, and she dodged it before it could make her sneeze again. "Ha!" She taunted it with a leg, then withdrew the leg before it could reach her. It whipped its little white tail and crouched down to spring on her.
After a few minutes of cat and mouse, it gave up and moved down the street to find other prey. Janice went back to sitting on the curb and looking down the street expectantly. At least the morning was warming up - she didn't really need her sweater anymore. She took it off and wrapped it around her waist, then sat back down to wait.
A few more minutes later, she got back up and went inside her house. She opened the garage door so that the mechanic could get at her car, then grabbed her phone book and looked for mechanics-on-wheels. There were several, and she didn't know if she wanted to trust any of them. She flopped herself down on her couch and turned on the TV. Hopefully, the guy would honk when he got there.
The network channels were off the air, and after flipping for a second, she wondered if her cable was down, but then she got the SciFi channel. It was a Twilight Zone she had seen before - of course, she had seen them all before - but it was something to occupy her mind. She sat there and let Rod work his magic over her.
"I said, get up!" Steph popped a waffle into the toaster and pushed the lever down. She set the plate with the waffles already done on the kitchen table and grabbed the syrup from the fridge. Her youngest, George, shuffled to the table and piled a couple of waffles onto his plate, then drowned them in syrup. "Hey, hey, Georgie, easy on the sugar, babe".
Her daughter bounced in, saying, "Just some juice, please, mom".
Steph sighed. "Joanie, I just made all these waffles".
"You can eat 'em. You don't need to watch your weight anymore". After a withering glare from her mother, Joan added, "Sorry".
Steph picked up one of the spare waffles and munched at it. "Hurry up, OK? We gotta leave before the traffic to town gets too bad".
The kids grunted affirmatively. George went back to his soggy waffles and Joan pulled a juice carton out of the refrigerator and poured herself a tall glass. Steph saw her casting hungry glances at George's waffles, and slid a plate over to her.
"Less calories if you don't put syrup on 'em".
Joan picked up one of the unadorned waffles and gobbled it down. At least it's something on her stomach, Steph thought. After a few relatively silent moments of gulping down breakfast, Steph looked at the kitchen clock and started. "Hey, we gotta go". They flurried about the small house, grabbing bags and books and rushing out to the beat-up old car outside. The kids fought over the front seat before Joan won and George resigned himself to the back. Steph locked up the house and climbed into the driver's seat and buckled in. "Buckle it, Joanie," she said to her daughter, who always forgot to fasten her seat belt. The girl snapped her belt, then went back to the magazine she was reading.
Steph drove the car down the long driveway to the road and headed off to the highway into Austin.

November 5
In 2637, AUC, the first representatives from Vinland took their seats in the Senate in Rome. Vinland had been considered a barbaric province for so long that when the Vinlandians appeared in the latest Roman finery, several observers reported being shocked that they hadn't come in loincloths and tattoos. The sophistication that the first Vinlandians presented to the Senate helped them bring their province up to full equality in the Republic by the end of the decade.

November 4
In 1922, Howard Carter discovers the tomb of Tutankhamen in Egypt. When Carter brings King "Tut's" mummy out, he brings to life an ancient curse along with it. Within a year, every member of Carter's expedition is dead, and the mummy of Tutankhamen has vanished. Bedouins in the desert often tell tales of seeing the ancient Pharoah returning to his dusty grave.

November 4
In 1924, Thomas Edison, who had run against his better judgement, is defeated in the presidential race by Progressive candidate Robert M. LaFollette of Wisconsin. Edison, who had run as a Democrat, was relieved to have lost, and in his memoirs even claimed to have deliberately sabotaged his campaign. He became a good friend of President LaFollette's even backing him in his 1928 race for reelection.

November 4
In 1952, in an astonishingly tough campaign, Governor Adlai Stevenson of New York defeats General Dwight Eisenhower for the presidency. Governor Stevenson's slogan, "Let's talk sense to the American people" outshone the unimaginative "I like Ike" of the opposition, and his articulate vision for the future gave people far more confidence in his ability to lead the nation.

November 4
In 1980, after defeating incumbent President Ronald Reagan for the Republican presidential nomination, Representative John Anderson of Illinois takes on Senator Edward Kennedy of Massachusetts in the general election and emerges triumphant. Anderson's liberal Republicanism is almost a 180 degree turn from Reagan's conservative activism, and it inspires many young people who had been turned off by the old-line conservatives to take a new look at the Republican Party. Anderson easily won reelection in 1984, and his ideals continued to shape the party for decades after.

November 5
In 1828, President Andrew Jackson wins reelection after the abolition of the Electoral College allows him to be popularly elected. The people support Jackson fanatically; so much so that, when he dissolves the Congress dominated by his opponents, they muster in the streets of Washington to keep the National Republicans from organizing support against him. When Jackson outlaws the opposition party, though, he goes too far, and it ignites a civil war between the rival political factions.

November 5
In 1924, Thomas Edison, who had run against his better judgement, is defeated in the presidential race by Progressive candidate Robert M. LaFollette of Wisconsin. Edison, who had run as a Democrat, was relieved to have lost, and in his memoirs even claimed to have deliberately sabotaged his campaign. He became a good friend of President LaFollette's even backing him in his 1928 race for reelection.

November 5
In 1940, Progressive Henry Wallace pulls off the upset of the century by defeating incumbent Alfred Landon for the presidency. With war looming in Europe, the country was unsure with an isolationist like Landon in the Oval Office, and turned to the optimistic vision of Wallace, who led the nation through the conflict and beyond.

November 5
In 1943, Pulitzer Prize winning journalist Sam Rogers is born in Fort Sheridan, Illinois. His award-winning documentary on incest, Fool For Love, shattered all of America's preconceptions about the problem, and focused a spotlight on it in the 80?s.

November 5
In 4699, Emperor Xiao Yang dies in office. With no clear laws guiding them in such an occurrence, the Imperial Council votes to allow its speaker, Zhang Chunqiao, to serve out the remainder of Xiao's term, and then to hold elections as scheduled. The arrangement works well, and the Council writes it into Imperial law.

November 5
In 1605, English Catholics blow up Parliament and kill King James I. The chief conspirator in the plot, Robert Catesby, kept the plan between himself and fellow conspirator Guy Fawkes, and their plan created havoc in England. There was an immediate struggle for the crown between several of James' cousins, and after King Robert ascended the throne in 1606, Catholicism became legal again.

November 5
In 1890, Colonel Beauregard T. Jackson shoots Ezekial Morrison in the head, but one of the children inside the farmhouse trips the explosives; the farmhouse explodes, killing all but 3 of the hostages inside, as well as killing 14 soldiers and wounding Colonel Jackson. When he returns to Salt Lake City, Colonel Jackson doubles the bounty on rebel Mormon Charles Brigman.

November 5
In 1940, America demonstrates its impatience with Franklin Roosevelt's New Deal by denying him the unprecedented 3rd presidential term he was running for. Republican Alf Landon took over the reigns of America just in time to be plunged into World War II. The isolationist Landon was unable to handle the job of guiding America through such a great crisis, and was voted out after 1 term.

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© Today in Alternate History, 2013-. All characters appearing in this work are fictitious. Any resemblance to real persons, living or dead, is purely coincidental.