California is divided between two independent nations, the Republic in the north and the Free Zone in the south.
The big brother of the two is clearly the Republic, with a population three times that of the Free Zone. Run from the magnificent imperial capital of Sacremento, it spans the entire central valley and controls the coast north from Santa Barbara. It has only two points of contact with the outside world. Ships from all over the Pacific Basin put into the port of San Francisco, but the Republic's principle trading partners are the merchants of the American Northwest. In fact, every now and then, the Northwesterners get bitten by ambition and they'll sieze the city, put a garrison in the fortress at Alcatraz Island and control all trade with California.
At the other side of the state, overland convoys use Donner Pass on their way across the desert to the Mormon lands beyond.
The Southern California Free Zone is a theocracy run by the President of the Scientologist Church, who also has spiritual authority over the Republic. The Free Zone comprises little more than the Los Angeles Basin and its associated neighbors, which gives the president enough land to support himself in style, but not enough to challenge the hegemony of the Republic. The Free Zone is so completely isolated from the outside world by deserts, oceans and mountains that it has never had to defend itself from anyone other than its northern neighbor.
Last Updated January 2003
Copyright © 1999-2003 Matthew White