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Happy Landings, name given by Sally Linsay, is a township located more than a million and a half steps West of Datum Earth, on a stepwise equivalent of Washington State where humans live in harmony with trolls.[1]

GraysHarbourCounty

Location of Grays Harbour County (in red).

On the Datum, its location correspond to a township called Humptulips in Grays Harbour County.[1]

Description

The township is sprawling along the bank of a river with a clutter of buildings, tracks threading through a thick, damp forest. No fields and farms or any sign of agriculture.[1]

A broad dirt square is the heart of the township. The buildings around it are old and eroded. The square is dominated by a stout communal building known as 'City Hall'.[2]

The Long Earth

Lobsang and Joshua were brought to this place by Sally in order for them to understand more of the Long Earth by understanding this place.[1]

There, they were welcomed by the mayor (see Spencer)who explained to them that people had arrived here over thousand of years (long before Step Day). It seems like Happy Landings act like a "people magnet" with natural steppers.

Most of the town's population, including the mayor, was born there. They do have newcomers from time to time and most arrive without knowing how they got there. It appears that most of the newcomers accidentally stepped from the Datum to there.

Because of a great influx of newcomers in the last decades, the community had had to expand, new settlemends seeding across the countryside. This fast expansion was possible thanks to the trolls who seem to enjoy carrying heavy loads.

But the main reason behind the creation of new settlements is because trolls get nervous around large communities of humans. It had been discovered that when there were more than one thousand, eight hundred and ninety humans, the trolls would go away and not return before the number of humans had dropped.

To Joshua, this welcoming and happy community had something off. He noticed that a few wanted to leave the place and there were no crimes, no police or anything of the sort there. He started to suspect that the presence of trolls has something to do with it.

The Long Mars

In the years following Step Day, before the Yellowstone eruption, more and more people started to show up in Happy Landings. This afflux of strangers was more than the community could absorb and started to upset the locals since they didn't fit in with the local ways and didn't want to. Some of them even started to draw unwanted attention to the community by feeding back informations to the Datum authorities. As a result, some families decided to leave, like Tom Wagoner's family.[3][4]

The mayor and the other leaders being unsure of how to deal with the massive arrival of new people, a group of twenty years old Happy Landers offered their leadership to deal with the situation. This group, led by David, Anne Spencer, Michael Spencer, Rachel Spencer and Rosalind Spencer, got their offer refused and mounted a coup d'état with the help of supporters from several nearby townships. They suceeded in taking control of the town but fighting ensued. At the end, the elders prevailed but many supporters, from both sides, died. Not believers in capital punishement, the elders didn't know what to do with this group of young Happy Landers until the day the USS Neil A. Armstrong I showed up. The elders welcomed the crew and asked Captain Stringer to take the prisoners onboard and abandon them in a remote Earth from where they wouldn't be able to come back from.[4]

Years later, in May 2045, the USS Neil A. Armstrong II and the USS Eugene A. Cernan found the wreck of the Armstrong I on Earth West 182,674,101 and the five Happy Landers who were taken into custody.[5] They soon discovered Captain Sam Allen, with the help of Snowy, who was their prisoner and quickly figured out what happened thanks to Sam's testimony. The Happy Landers turned out to be Next, and the US Navy took them into custody and resumed their journey towards Earth West 250,000,000.[4]

Around the same time, many Next descendants of Happy Landings families like Paul Spencer Wagoner and his sister Judy, were rounded up all around the US Aegis and kept at the USLONGCOM Pearl Harbor facility.[6][7]

At the end of August 2045, the Armstrong II and the Cernan came back to the Datum from their jaunt to the far reach of the Long Earth and informed the government about what happened to the Armstrong I. Seeing what the Napoleons were capable of decided the government to put together a 'Special Contingency Task Group' to discuss the potentiel threat posed by the Next. They ultimately authorized the use of a weapon of mass destruction and sent the Armstrong II and the Cernan to Happy Landings, one the incubators for Next.

This decided Roberta Golding, originally from Happy Landings and one of the Next working for the Cowley administration, to ask for the help of Nelson Azikiwe.[8] Nelson contacted Joshua Valienté, who in turn contacted Sally Linsay, back from her jaunt to Gap Mars. Together, they helped the Next inmates of the Pearl Harbor facility to escape to Happy Landings through the soft places.[9]

When the Armstrong II and the Cernan reached Happy Landings just after the escapees, the Next quickly ran away. Maggie Kauffman, captain of the Armstrong II, the only one with the authority to decide if the a nuclear weapon would be used, held a debate between Joe Mackenzie and Joshua Valienté, the first one arguing for the use of the weapon (against his own opinion) and the later arguing against it. In the end, Joshua prevailed and the Navy twains left Happy Landings alone.[10][11]

Around a month after the return of the Armstrong II and the Cernan, Lobsang and Agnes visited Happy Landings to find out it was deserted by the Next and their families. There, they ran into Rich and George, two natural steppers who ended up in Happy Landings by accident. Lobsang also detected a message, transmitted on radio frequencies, left by the Next before they departure, stating that they claimed a stretch of the Long Earth, named the Grange that was uninhabited and now serves as a kind of reservation where they can be between themselves and left in peace. In order to make sure no clues of the Next's location where to be found, Lobsang destroyed Happy Landings by dropping a small asteroid on top of City Hall.[12]

References

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 The Long Earth - Chapter 37
  2. The Long Mars - Chapter 12
  3. The Long Mars - Chapter 18
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 The Long Mars - Chapter 32
  5. The Long Mars - Chapter 31
  6. The Long Mars - Chapter 28
  7. The Long Mars - Chapter 33
  8. The Long Mars - Chapter 41
  9. The Long Mars - Chapter 42
  10. The Long Mars - Chapter 43
  11. The Long Mars - Chapter 44
  12. The Long Mars - Chapter 45

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