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The Weight of Worlds

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Publisher's descriptionEdit

An original novel set in the universe of Star Trek: The Original Series!
The Ephrata Institute is an intellectual think tank at the outer fringes of the final frontier. Dedicated to the arts and sciences, the Institute seems an unlikely target for an invasion, but it proves easy pickings when the Crusade comes from beyond, determined to impose its harsh, unbending Truth on all the worlds of the Federation. Armed with weaponized gravity, the alien Crusaders will stop at nothing to rescue the universe from its myriad beliefs . . . even if it means warping the mind and soul of every sentient being they encounter.
Responding to an urgent distress signal, Captain James T. Kirk and the crew of the U.S.S. Enterprise soon find themselves in conflict with the Crusade, and facing individual challenges. When Kirk and Spock are transported to the Crusade’s distant homeland to confront the source of the invasion, Sulu finds himself trapped behind enemy lines, while Lieutenant Uhura is faced with possibly the most difficult decisions of her career.
As the Crusade sets its sights beyond Ephrata IV, it is up to the Enterprise and its besieged crew to keep freedom of thought from being crushed beneath the weight of worlds!


The Enterprise is sent to answer a distress call from Ephrata IV, one of the Federation's most important research posts. Arriving and receiving no response to hails, Kirk, Spock, Sulu and security officer Ensign Fawzia Yaseen beam down only to find the post staff have been brainwashed into serving a fanatical religion, the Truth. The outpost has been taken over by the Crusaders, the militant religious order of the Ialalts who have come from another dimension.

The landing party are quickly captured but one of the Crusaders, Maxah, is a member of a resistance group. He palms Kirk and Spock a phaser before they are transported through a dimensional portal to Ialat and saves Sulu and Yaseen from undergoing the same brainwashing procedure as the researchers. He then tricks the Enterprise into beaming him aboard but is unable to convince them to leave orbit, resulting in them being captured by a gravity cannon that holds them in place. Scotty is injured during an attempt to break free, leaving Uhura in command.

Kirk and Spock are met by Vlisora, the consort of the world's God-King Jaenab. However, she turns out to be a member of the resistance. She explains that until recently the Truth was a peaceful religion with most administration left in the hand of secular authorities. However, the opening of the portal to other universes shocked them with the discovery of life unaware of the Truth. Alone in their universe and with no cultural diversity, the Ialats saw this as a sign of a coming apocalypse, turning away from any part of their culture that contradicted the Truth and seeing it as their duty to forcibly convert the new universe.

Sulu and Yaseen attempt acts of sabotage but are captured. Yaseen is brainwashed and the local Crusader leader, Sokis, threatens Sulu with death unless Uhura hands the Enterprise over. Maxah helps Uhura jam the control signal, freeing those who have been brainwashed. Weaponless and outnumbered, the Crusaders are easily overpowered and the gravity cannon destroyed.

Kirk and Spock try to destroy the portal but, wanting a confrontation with her husband, Vlisora allows Kirk to be captured. Kirk challenges Jaenab to a trial by ordeal, consisting of a zero-gravity ball game. Kirk bends the rules as far as he can, causing Jaenab to be injured by a contracting hoop, but Jaenab still refuses to submit. However, Spock and Vlisora manage to retrieve the helmet Jaenab uses to give his people telepathic instructions. Spock uses it to mind meld with Jaenab, presenting him with evidence that different cultures can co-exist. His belief shaken, Jaenab calls off the Crusade, entering into seclusion and leaving Vlisora to rule in his stead. Once everyone is returned to their own dimension, the portals are dismantled until the Ialalts are ready to accept other races' existence.



Elena CollinsHevlasJames T. KirkMavDagmar PolaskySpockHikaru SuluNyota UhuraFawzia YaseenYvete
Referenced only 
Zefram CochraneRichard DaystromKabrolPhineas Tarbolde

Starships and vehiclesEdit

USS EnterpriseUSS Sally RideYakima


Ephrata IVPearl SquarePhlox LibraryTrang Hall
Referenced only 
EarthJanus IVKentuckyStarbase 13Tiburon

Races and culturesEdit

Referenced only 

States and organizationsEdit

Ephrata InstituteUnited Federation of PlanetsCrusade

Science and technologyEdit

data slatequantum singularitysubspace telescopetype-1 phaser

Ranks and titlesEdit


Other referencesEdit

bagpipiesbone fluteduraniumglassheliumHodgkin's LawKlingon operamarbleNightingale WomanoxygensiliconsteelVulcan lyre




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