"La Différence"  
Did You Say Chicks.jpg
Author Harry Turtledove
First Appearance Did You Say Chicks?
Publisher Baen
Reprinted Chicks Ahoy, 2010
Collected No
Genre(s) Science Fiction
Publication date 1998

"La Différence" is a science fiction short story by Harry Turtledove written specifically for the short story collection Did You Say Chicks?, edited by Esther Friesner and published by Baen in 1998. It was reprinted in the omnibus Chicks Ahoy! in 2010.

It takes place on Io, a moon of Jupiter, in the late 21st Century.[1] War has just broken out between a re-militarized Japan and United Europe with the Japanese launching a surprise attack on Sengen Base. Renée Messier and Alec Hall survive and the story consists of their attempt to flee to Loki Station in a crawler.

This story may be set in the same continuity as "Les Mortes d'Arthur," which also features an entity called United Europe, but Turtledove has never confirmed this. Oddly enough, both stories include secondary French characters with the surname Guizot. There are also some clues that "Mortes" takes place in the same continuity as "Next Year in Jerusalem," however there are enough differences between the geopolitical and spacefaring scenarios between the three stories to disprove the "shared universe" theory. It is more likely that Turtledove was simply self-borrowing and recycling ideas.

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  1. Did You Say Chicks?, p. 270. "The design went back over a hundred years to the first lunar rover, maybe the high point of the ill-fated American space program." This suggests that the story takes place a relatively short time after 2069.