Christian IV, King of Denmark, Sir Thomas Roe, the English Ambassador to Christian's court, and various elements of the extended Abrabanel family have arranged an unusually well-funded and well led expedition to North America. The purpose of this mission? To establish a powerful Danish presence in Newfoundland, from which the Danes will extend their influence and commercial presence across North America, in the regions above the French possessions in the New World.
The Danish scheme is one of King Christian’s responses to his forced incorporation into the new Union of Kalmar, following Denmark’s defeat in the Baltic War of 1634. In some ways, it is aimed as much against Gustavus Adolphus of Sweden as it is against Richelieu’s France. It is an attempt to restore Denmark’s power without coming into direct conflict with the Swedish king and his American allies.
But neither Gustav Adolf nor Mike Stearns are fooled by Christian’s machinations. Their response is depicted in Eric Flint’s short story “Brave New World,” also part of this volume, and it is not one that the Danish king had foreseen. The world of the 1630s, already thrown into tumult by the Ring of Fire and the arrival of the town of Grantville from across time and space, just got more complicated—and more exciting.