Remember that song We Didn’t Start the Fire by Billy Joel? The whole song is him going through a huge list of people and events that shaped American culture over the last decades. I was thinking about that song and decided to challenge myself. I will be going through the entire song and creating some manner of reference in my world (Fletnern) for each of the references in the song.
For example: Marilyn Monroe - Actress, tragic, affair with president - in our world. In Fletnern: Ammora Villishephska was a famous opera singer in Parnania. She was young, beautiful, and gifted with one of the most powerful soprano voices ever heard. Not surprisingly, she caught the attention of the Prince Governor and they began an affair. When Garnock’s army showed up at the gates of Parnania, The Governor even had her brought into the palace for protection.
During the actual battle, the Governor’s wife became very disturbed that her rival was amongst those being protected. The Governor was not willing to throw her out in the streets, but he couldn’t take Ammora with him when they decided to flee, so this beautiful opera singer, star of the entire city was left in the palace, virtually unguarded when the enemy came storming through the gates.
Now the rumor is that the Governor took her with him or somehow had her safely evacuated from the city. But she disappeared after the attack. The Governor was set up elsewhere, but Ammora was never seen again. No one in the royal family ever spoke of her, and it was known to be a taboo subject, so the mystery remains - What ever happened to the famous opera star?
As Ammora hid in the palace, she was discovered by a troop of soldiers. Assuming she was a noblewoman, they brought her to their commanders without allowing any harm to come to her. One of the commanders recognized her for who she was and immediately had a detachment escort her back to his villa in Garnock. There she still lives today. She’s much fatter and older, but she can still belt out a song like nobody’s business. She has been maintained as a concubine - a “slave wife”, but her life has not been that horrible, and at this point she has developed a rather severe case of agoraphobia. She does not want to be returned. She wants to live out her life as the pet and sometimes lover of a rich Lat general.
OK - for all you gold farmers out there who couldn’t care less about history or interesting mysteries in the social culture, Ammora still makes a fantastic adventure spark. What if someone (magically or naturally) gets a hint that she is alive? You can’t send an army to get her back; that would attract too much attention. They’ll need adventurers to “liberate” her. But once they get to her, she will not want to be taken from the villa. Oh, and don’t forget this guy is a general. So he may be past his prime and an easy battle. Anyone taking her will find his entire regiment hunting them down.
OK - one down, a LOT more to go.
and when that’s over, I might give Tim McGraw’s Southern Voice a try.