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This was a story I read a long time ago, I believe from Asimov's magazine in the early 1980s (1982?), about a pilot or soldier in an alternate World War I that lasted much longer than it did in our world (at least 20 years).

The main character finds a way to possibly end the war by sending himself to an alternate reality. He does this by sending up a flare that would signal the end of the latest battle, and ends up in a world where World War II lasted longer, into the late 1940s.

There, he has an encounter with a black American pilot flying a WW2 era aircraft which the protagonist notes is more advanced than those he is familiar with.

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  • Any other details that you can offer for this? Even small ones can make a difference in identifying a story. Some suggestions for things you might add: How did one travel to an alternate reality? Were there any memorable details of battles, locations, people, inventions, etc.? How long had WWI lasted? How long had the other world's WWII lasted? In what ways did these histories differ from our own?
    – Otis
    Aug 25, 2017 at 22:02
  • I remember it being about a pilot or soldier living on the front lines, who finds a way to escape his reality where World War One has lasted at least twenty years by sending up a flare that would signal the end of the latest battle. He finds himself in another reality where World War Two has lasted longer, into the late 1940s, and has an encounter with a black American pilot flying a WW2 era aircraft which the protagonist notes is more advanced than those he is familiar with. This story appeared in Asimov's in the early 1980s (1982?) Oct 15, 2017 at 23:11
  • I've edited the new details into your question. Please feel free to add anything else that occurs to you directly to the question -- it will get more visibility than additional information in comments.
    – Otis
    Oct 22, 2017 at 4:34

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There is an alternate history World War I short story called "Over There", by Mike Resnick, which was published in Asimov's in 1991. But that's where the similarities end. It's about Theodore Roosevelt getting involved in World War I. So I mostly mention it to discourage anyone else from suggesting it.

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  • I remember it-Roosevelt persuades President Wilson to allow him and some of his former Rough Riders to serve in World War One but find themselves unprepared for German machine guns. They die heroic or pointless deaths depending on your POV. Oct 15, 2017 at 23:14
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    Found it! "Beneath The Shadow of her Smile," Alexander Jablokov, Asimov's, April 1985. Feb 8, 2018 at 7:53
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    @WVRSpenceWestVirginiaRebel You can answer your own question, and accept the answer, and you should do so.
    – Mike Scott
    Feb 8, 2018 at 9:53

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