|Series:||The Original Series & The Next Generation|
|Author(s):||Judith and Garfield Reeves-Stevens|
|Published:||Hardcover - November 1994|
|Reprint(s):|| Paperback - October 1995|
Paperback - September 2006
|ISBN:|| Hardcover: ISBN 0671894226|
Paperback: ISBN 0671894234
|Date:||2061, 2078, 2117, 2267 & 2366|
|Stardate:||3849.8 & 43920.6|
Original 1994 cover
At last, the long awaited novel featuring both famous crews of the starships Enterprise in an epic adventure that spans time and space. Captain Kirk and the crew of the USS Enterprise (NCC-1701) are faced with their most challenging mission yet - rescuing renowned scientist Zefram Cochrane from captors who want to use his skills to conquer the galaxy.
As the two crews struggle to fulfill their missions, destiny draws them closer together until past and future merge - and the fate of each of the two legendary starships rest in the hands of the other vessel...
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From Memory Alpha:
The book begins with an aged James Kirk, ready to retire from Starfleet, visiting the Guardian of Forever one last time. The Guardian has been inactive since a few years after he discovered it, (TOS episode: "The City on the Edge of Forever") and a researcher there requests that he ask it a question. He does, and it doesn't respond. But when the researcher walks away, leaving Kirk alone with his regrets, he whispers the word "Why?", and the Guardian answers...
Zefram Cochrane has just returned from his historic first warp flight – to Alpha Centauri and back in just eight months. His friend and patron Micah Brack warns him that the Optimum – a militaristic political movement bent on the eradication of any person deemed genetically and/or ideologically "inferior" – has taken an interest in his work, and that a high-level officer, Colonel Adrik Thorsen, will arrive in a few hours. Brack explains that he's about to release the warp research he funded, royalty-free, because he believes the Optimum's rise will result in a bloody, planet-leveling war, and he wants extrasolar colonies established well before then. He arranges for Cochrane to be taken to a secret lab where he can continue his research outside the Optimum's grasp.
Nearly twenty years later, Cochrane returns to Earth. The Optimum has taken power across most of the civilized world, suspending the Constitution in the United States, imprisoning the British royalty, and everywhere making sure to "contain" nonoptimals. Thorsen captures Cochrane and demands that he explain how to build a "warp bomb." During early research on the warp drive, an accident caused an antimatter explosion. Everything within eighteen meters of the equipment disappeared without even a trace of radiation. The diameter was determined by the laws of physics and couldn't be changed – but Thorsen refuses to believe that. Cochrane eventually escapes, nearly killing Thorsen in the process – making him suboptimal. With prosthetic enhancements, Thorsen survives World War III and comes after Cochrane in his old age, killing the scientist's wife. Cochrane flees his home in the Alpha Centauri system and disappears.
Eventually Cochrane winds up on the planetoid Gamma Canaris, having been rescued by the Companion.
Years later, the Enterprise under command of Captain Kirk is called to answer for a mysterious transmission from a person who appears to be Nancy Hedford, who was thought to be dead. The Enterprise discovers that Cochrane has been kidnapped by the Optimum. They rescue Cochrane, and eventually begin to head toward a black hole to escape the Optimum.
Eighty years in the future, Picard's crew has been dispatched to retrieve a "special science package" from the same black hole. In a strange twist of black hole physics, both Enterprise's end up trapped inside the same black hole, time having been compressed. The two ships cannot communicate with each other in order to preserve the timelines. Eventually, the Enterprise-D is able to rescue Cochrane, and both ships escape the Optimum. Thorsen's consciousness is destroyed when Picard destroys an ancient artifact containing all that is left of him.
The story fast forwards to just after the Enterprise-D is lost on Veridian. Picard and Riker are on Titan, when Picard receives a letter that had been written to him before his birth. He discovers it is from Kirk, who is finally telling him the entire story.
The final scene is back at the Guardian, where we discover that the entire story was a revelation to Kirk, an answer to his question, "Why?"
- John Burke • Monica Burke-Cochrane • Zefram Cochrane • Flint (Micah Brack) • Richard Galen • Mary • Okuda • Sarek • Sternbach • Adrik Thorsen
- Referenced only
- Neil Armstrong • Buck Bokai • Gautama Buddha • Oliver Cromwell • Cross • Daar • Delgado • Phillip Green • Stephen Hawking • Jein • Newson • Khan Noonien Singh • Yoshikawa
Starships and vehiclesEdit
- armored troop carrier • Betsy • limousine • lunar transport disk • Nautilus-class • Orbital Fighter Escort • orbital transfer unit
- Referenced only
- Bonaventure • Great Western • City Of Utopia Planitia • John Cabal • maglev train • sailing clipper • steamship • yacht
- Earth (Battersea Stadium • Buckingham Palace • Heathrow Airport • Highgate Prison • London • Victoria Station/Thorsen Central Hub • WED Research Platform) • Titan (Christopher's Landing) • Gateway (Ellison Research Station)
- Referenced only
- Altair IV • Bradbury's Landing • Earth (Afghanistan • Atlantic Ocean • Bristol • Hawaii • India • Los Angeles • Natal • New York City • San Francisco • Sandringham House • Seoul • Stockholm • Syria) • Luna (Copernicus City • Kashishowa Station) • Mars • Neptune • RG-1522 • Sol • Wolf 359 (Stapledon Center)
Races and culturesEdit
States and organizationsEdit
- Brack Interplanetary • Cochrane Foundation for the Study of Multiphysics • Ferengi Alliance • Her Majesty's Royal Resistance Force • New United Nations • Optimal Republic of Great Britain • Optimum Movement • Piaget SA • Rolls-Royce • Romulan Star Empire • United Federation of Planets
- Referenced only
- Analytical Committee • Austrian Empire • British Empire • Chinese Empire • London Kings • Manchester Druids • Massachusetts Institute of Technology • Martian Colonies • Ottoman Empire • Prussian Empire • Royal Astronomical Society • The Times • United Nations Intelligence • United States of America
- astronomer • baseball bat • baseball glove • colonel • corporal • EM shield • fistgun • Guardian of Forever • identification card • impulse engine • industrialist • inertial dampener • nanotechnology • norsehlat • neural inhibitor • optics • Ozymandias • particle cannon • photograph • Post-Atomic Horror • Preserver obelisk • spray hypo • string quartet • The Walrus and the Carpenter • warp drive • World Series • World War III • zombie (mercenary) • Anglo-Zulu War • antimatter • armored infantry • artificial intelligence surrogate • asteroid interceptor • baseball • battlefield pulse emitter • botanical engineer • Clark corollary • Cambridge Riots • Casino Royale • Emergency Measures Act of 2076 • Eugenics Wars • Eurodollar • fanjet • fig tree • Fourth World • Fundamental Declarations of the Martian Colonies • glass • home plate • James Bond • Josephson probe • lacrosse • Law of Parallel Planet Development • liquid vacuum telescope • lithium converter • matter • Opium War • paratrooper • radiation armor • rationing • shredderbomb • synapse • Theory of Special Relativity • Treaty of London • World War II
- This novel is a sequel of sorts to the TOS episode: "Metamorphosis".
- Though the events of this novel were largely contradicted by Star Trek: First Contact, it remains a fan favorite
- Federation was reissued in 2006 as part of the Star Trek 40th Anniversary Celebration along with The Entropy Effect, Vulcan's Glory, and Strangers from the Sky
- In this novel, which pre-dates the movie Star Trek: First Contact, Cochrane's ship is the Bonaventure, rather than the Phoenix. The Bonaventure was the ship identified as the first to have warp drive in the Star Trek: The Animated Series episode "The Time Trap".
Shadows on the Sun
|TOS Stories||Next novel:|
|TNG Stories||Next novel:|
Balance of Power
|TOS unnumbered novels||Next novel:|
The Ashes of Eden
Ménage à Troi
Journey to Babel
|Voyages of the |
USS Enterprise (NCC-1701)
(2264 to 2270)
The Vulcan Academy Murders
|The above chronology placements are based on the primary placement in 2366.|
The Pocket Books Timeline places events from this story in seven other timeframes:
The Lives of Dax
Encounter at Farpoint
Chapter 2, Section 5
A Girl for Every Star
Journey to Babel
To Reign in Hell: The Exile of Khan Noonien Singh
Shadows of the Indignant
A Flag Full of Stars
The Last Roundup
Past Tense, Part II
The Ashes of Eden