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Star Trek is a shared universe, and was one long before Marvel made the term popular.
It’s a shared universe though, in more than the obvious way.
Not only have Trek shows done the occasional amazing crossover, the universe itself has long been shared by both the creatives who have brought us the various series and movies, and us, the fans.
That shared sense of ownership, for better or worse, and that beautiful sense of belonging that has been created and sustained for more than five-decades, is the reason Star Trek exists today.
Gene Roddenberry, the Great Bird of the Galaxy, realised that early on – way before any television executive or sociologist.
After the cancellation of the first Star Trek series in 1969, fans refused to let this vision of the future that they loved, disappear. Star Trek meant too much, to too many.
The psychological need to ‘belong’ is a powerful drive in human beings, and Star Trek often attracted those who felt ‘othered’ by their communities. Viewers who felt isolated or out of step with their time suddenly realised, no matter where they lived, that someone out there thought in a similar way to them, and held similar aspirations – or at least, a similar ‘misfit’ sensibility. When the first Trek convention popped up in 1972 and the media reported on it, that only confirmed this new concept of belonging, which over the years has grown, and grown, and grown some more.
For an hour a week, across twenty-something weeks a year, for three years, a lot of disenfranchised individuals who wanted to see a better future for humanity, found in Star Trek and the crew of the Enterprise, a sense of connection and belonging that transcended their usual daily interactions.
It really is something very special.
Gene recognised that, and identified with it. He had, himself, at times felt ‘othered.’ He, I think, was probably just as excited to find us as we were to find him and his show.
Gene attended the conventions and encouraged the fans to keep dreaming, and he celebrated their creativity and love for his show.
Works of fan fiction have, through the decades, kept Star Trek alive, and have created a global community where people share their love for Trek in various ways.
It is that spirit that brought this Star Trek story into existence.
In 2014, when the idea for this series fell out of my head, I stuck it on a website to share it with fellow fans, because at that time all we had were the J.J. Abrams movies – and while they were good, they were set in a different reality, and had made some unfortunate creative choices that bewildered and frustrated many.
Though we are experiencing a wonderful resurgence of Trek now, I’ve left these pages on the site because it was fun developing the story, and thinking about a show that would focus on a couple of characters from the prime timeline that I felt deserved more love than they ended up receiving.
Plus, there always has been, and hopefully always will be, a place for fan fiction.
Read on, and hopefully, enjoy!
Star Trek: Sentinel Bible
A ‘show Bible’ is a detailed outline of an idea. It’s a work of world-building, where the creator of a show fleshes out their ideas in the hopes of showing potential investors what they’re on about, and then, with the intention of guiding other creatives who will come join them in their sandbox.
Thankfully, a lot of the world-building work has already been done, and many of the settings that the characters will exist in, are well established.
One that is not, is the titular ship, so let’s start there.
Gene Roddenberry always described the USS Enterprise as a ‘character’ in Star Trek. The ship was, in his mind, as important to the story as Kirk or Picard.
Viewers also felt that way, and that was best demonstrated by audience reactions to the destruction of the USS Enterprise in Star Trek III: The Search for Spock.
I was only a child when I saw the third Trek film, and had only recently fallen in love with all things Star Trek, but that scene hit me like a punch in the gut when I watched it for the first time on the big screen.
Though I had only journeyed with that ship through a handful or original episodes I’d caught on reruns in Australia, and three motion pictures (at the time), I – like many others – loved that ship.
The USS Sentinel is the primary location for the series, and is a “new ship in an old skin.”
Her exterior is a veteran of multiple exploration missions, defensive actions against hostile threats, and various other missions – but her interior is brand new and bursting with up-to-date technology.
Please note that many of the details for the Sentinel will differ from those of the original Ambassador Class starship, because in this story, the venerable but sturdy remaining Ambassador Classes (and Excelsior Classes) have undergone major internal refits as part of a new Federation Border Defence Program, called ‘Project Sentinel’.
THE SETTING: USS SENTINEL
USS SENTINEL NCC-71118
REFIT STATUS: SECOND REFIT SINCE THE CLASS WAS LAUNCHED
VESSEL TYPE: HEAVY CRUISER
CURRENT MISSION PROFILE: BORDER DEFENCE/SEARCH AND RESCUE/REFUGEE SETTLEMENT
CREW COMPLIMENT: 609
PASSENGER CAPACITY: 301
LENGTH: 524.256 METERS
WIDTH: 283.006 METERS
HEIGHT: 101.955 METERS
MASS: 3,710,000 METRIC TONNES
NUMBER OF DECKS: 33
SPEED: WARP 9.90
ARMAMENT: FORWARD, AFT, STARBOARD, PORT, VENTRAL AND DORSAL MARK XII PHASER CANNONS, FORWARD AND AFT QUANTUM TORPEDOES
DEFENSIVE SYSTEMS: DEFLECTOR SHIELDING
AUXILIARY CRAFT: FEDERATION SHUTTLE CRAFT, RUNABOUTS
As mentioned above, there have been a number of changes made to the vessel after its most recent refit, with one of the most obvious being the design of the bridge.
The most recent refit has applied a modified version of the Sovereign Class bridge design, as seen (with various alterations between films) in Star Trek: First Contact, Star Trek: Insurrection, and Star Trek: Nemesis.
The design has been streamlined to reduce the number of crew required during a standard or emergency bridge shift. In the original Sovereign design, a standard bridge compliment could include as many as 15 officers and support staff. The streamlined design built specifically for the Ambassador and Excelsior refits, has room for a maximum of 12 crew, but the side bridge stations running along the port and starboard walls can be unmanned during standard ship operations, reducing the standard bridge complement to eight. During battle, or any other emergency situation, those stations come online, taking over some aspects of the main bridge stations to enable the command crew to focus on the issue at hand.
The decision to abolish manned stations lining the port and starboard sides of the bridge, made by Starfleet’s Corps of Engineers in 2385, was to enable all officers and support staff crewing the bridge to have complete access to the main viewscreen, and better access to each other in an emergency – with only the Helm Officer being required to turn around.
Additionally, ship status displays were removed from behind the Captain’s char to enhance security as that area of the bridge could often be seen in ship-to-ship communications. Instead, now, the emblem of the United Federation of Planets is displayed.
Also in the new design, a port side airlock giving external access to the bridge from a docked vessel has been replaced by a crew lounge and rest area specifically for officers and support staff on shift.
Marital Status: Widowed
Children: 1, Male
Affiliation: The United Federation of Planets, Starfleet
Commenced Active Duty: March 2285
Specialisation Streams: Navigation/Sciences/Operations/Command
Current Command: USS Sentinel, Ambassador Class
Previous Command: USS Alliance, Excelsior Class
Saavik first appeared in Star Trek in the sequel to The Motion Picture, Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan. She quickly became a fan favourite.
The first actor to portray the role was Kirstie Alley. In Star Trek III: The Search for Spock and Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home, Saavik was portrayed by Robin Curtis.
Both actors brought something different to the role, portraying her in a way that ensured she would receive an enduring place in Star Trek history.
Other than Saavik’s appearances in Star Trek canon, she has featured in a number of novels and other media, and details of her activities after Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home can be found here and here.
I’ve attempted to keep what made sense, and to stick with the origins of the character.
By that, I mean that in the original first drafts of the script for The Wrath of Khan, Saavik was referred to as being a Vulcan/Romulan hybrid. That isn’t always referenced in some non-canon works. Additionally, in one of the original drafts of The Voyage Home, there was a scene written where Saavik disclosed to Admiral Kirk that she was pregnant with Spock’s baby. That was the reason she stayed behind on Vulcan with Amanda. That scene was cut by Leonard Nimoy. Even though he had originally liked the idea, when it came time to film the scene, he was reticent to do so.
While some non-canon books have taken that thread and run with it, some haven’t. Many that did had Saavik bonded to Spock – and of interest, Rachel Garrett and Jean Luc Picard were in attendance at the ceremony!
The book in question is Vulcan’s Heart by Josepha Sherman and Susan Shwartz.
I liked the idea of Spock having a son, and I liked the idea of he and Saavik marrying, so that has been kept for piece of fan fiction.
A brief timeline of Saavik’s career shows that she has been active in many of the major events that have shaped the Alpha Quadrant.
2264 – Born, Hellguard.
2274 – Rescued from Hellguard by the Vulcan vessel Symmetry, by Spock.
Unknown – Bonded to Xon of Vulcan.
2281 – Enrolled in Starfleet Academy.
2285 – Granted her commission and assigned to the USS Enterprise as a Lieutenant Junior Grade.
2285 – Transferred to the USS Grissom after the Genesis Incident.
2285 – Remained on Vulcan under the care of Sarek and Amanda when the crew of the former starship Enterprise returned to Earth to address a number of charges against them.
2286 – Gave birth to Sarekah.
2287 – Took a leave of absence from Starfleet to care for her son.
2288 – Accepted a teaching role at the Vulcan Institute for the Transmission of Vulcan Culture.
2289 – Leaving Sarekah in the care of Amanda and Sarek, she accepted temporary reinstatement in Starfleet to undertake a secret mission aboard the USS Enterprise to end the threat of an extragalactic life-form that was responsible for the destruction of the USS Farragut some thirty-two year earlier.
2290 – Returned to Starfleet and served as Helmsman.
2293 – Attended the memorial for Captain James T. Kirk.
2311 – Was present during the Tomed Incident.
2329 – Became the First Officer of the USS Armstrong.
2329 – Became betrothed to Spock.
2344 – Unofficially sent into Romulan space to retrieve Spock.
2368 – Achieves the rank of Captain and is assigned to the USS T’Pau.
2373 – Requests command of a combat worthy vessel to participate in the Dominion War. She is given the USS Alliance, an Excelsior Class starship.
2374 – Saavik is wounded and sent home to Vulcan to heal. While there, she accepted command of the planet’s defenses.
2377 – Led a convoy of vessels to confront the Watraii, with the temporary rank of Commodore. She was still Captain of the USS Alliance.
2388 – Returns the Alliance to Earth so the vessel can undergo a six to twelve month refit to make it ready to join those vessels already refit and assigned to the Federation Defense Project, Sentinel. Promoted to Commodore and assigned as Commanding Officer of the USS Sentinel.
Rank: Major (Starfleet Search & Rescue Division, equivalent rank is Lieutenant Commander)
Position: First Officer, Chief of Security and Tactical
Homeworld: Delta IV
Species: Deltan/Human Hybrid
Age: 64 (apparent age is 50)
Marital Status: Single
Affiliation: The United Federation of Planets, Starfleet
Commenced Active Duty: March 2349
Specialisation Streams: Security and Tactical/Search & Rescue/Command
Current Assignment: USS Sentinel, Ambassador Class
Previous Assignment: USS Sydney-C, Excelsior Class
Jace is not your typical Deltan, and that’s not just because he is half-human. While in possession of the natural calm and even temperament of a Deltan, and most of their psionic abilities, Jace also has unusual aggressive tendencies when pressed or when those he cares for are at risk of harm.
This behaviour trait is not an abnormality for Deltans.
Jace’s mix of what appears to be a preternatural calm in stressful and/or life threatening situations, mixed with his natural empathy for others and his ability to deal with violent situations effectively, made him perfect for Security and Tactical, and eventually Starfleet’s Search & Rescue Division.
In general, Jace is a softly spoken, quiet and reclusive individual.
Standing at 6’1″ with a fair complexion, he is powerfully built and somewhat intimidating, but has gentle eyes that belie the fact he is capable of great violence.
Like most Deltans, Jace is bald, but he does have a full beard courtesy of his Human father. Jace’s father is a leading Federation scientist who fell in love with a Deltan Starfleet officer.
Raised on Delta IV by his father so that Jace could train in Deltan mental disciplines, and so that he could learn to subdue the infamous Deltan pheremones that he most definitely inherited from his mother, he often feels more Deltan than human. Despite his human sensibilities, he is frequently confused by his father’s species.
Having embraced his Deltan half at a young age, Jace sought to find ways to reconcile his aggressive tendencies and link it to some sort of purpose. In trying to help him, his father introduced Jace to the history of the Deltan people, and in particular the Delkhar (Del-car) Guardians, an ancient faction of the Deltan people who, over the ages, eventually became the protectors of the Delta IV. Embracing those legends, Jace went so far as to follow one of their older traditions, and heavily tattooed his body to symbolise his affinity with that group. As a result, Jace’s arms and chest are covered in a series of black, blue and red images and symbols.
Jace has the full empathic abilities of a Deltan, as well as their natural navigation, astrogation and advanced mathematical abilities.
Jace’s best friend is Hasani Uhura, a young Ensign who befriended the stoic Deltan despite Jace’s best efforts to avoid forming any bonds with his colleagues.
Jace has a history with Saavik, having run search and rescue missions for Starfleet while she was in command of the USS Alliance.
Jace is bisexual, and his Oath of Celibacy is on record with Starfleet.
Rank: Lieutenant Commander
Position: Chief of Operations, Second Officer
Homeworld: Ekaris III
Marital Status: Married
Affiliation: The United Federation of Planets, Starfleet
Commenced Active Duty: March 2371
Specialisation Streams: Xenobiology/Sciences/Operations/Command
Current Assignment: USS Challenger, Ambassador Class
Previous Assignment: Starfleet Academy, San Francisco
Samantha Wildman first appeared in Star Trek as a Xenobiologist and Ensign in Star Trek: Voyager.
She featured intermittently throughout the series, with her daughter, Naomi, being more a focus by the writers.
An excellent character, Samantha did attract the attention of authors and game designers alike, and appears in a number of Star Trek projects.
Gentle, compassionate, thoughtful and considerate, Samantha is a nurturer and careful individual with outstanding organisation and strategic skills.
A timeline of some of the important events in Samantha’s life has been assembled from a mix of sources including Memory Alpha and Memory Beta.
2347 – Born on Ekaris III to Linette and James Wildman.
2365 – Entered Starfleet Academy where she studied Xenobiology.
2268 – Was assigned as a student instructor at the Academy.
2368 – Spent her time as a Midshipman on Ktaria VII studying that world’s jungle ecosystem.
2369 – Married Greskrendtregk, a Ktarian.
2370 – Visited DS9 to seek help from Doctor Julian Bashir in getting pregnant.
2371 – Earned her Doctorate in Xenobiology and graduated from Starfleet Academy.
2371 – Assigned to the USS Voyager, and lost with that crew in the Delta Quadrant.
2372 – Gave birth to Naomi Wildman.
2372 – Naomi died due to complications and was replaced by a duplicate thanks to a subspace accident.
2378 – Samantha and Naomi were reunited with Greskrendtregk when Voyager returned to the Alpha quadrant.
2379 – Promoted to Lieutenant.
2380 – Samantha undertook advanced intensive training in Communications, Operations and Command over a period of two years.
2382 – Samantha played a major role in revealing the conspiracy behind the catomic health crisis. She was promoted to Lieutenant Commander and given her choice of assignments. She chose to be posted to Ktaria.
2388 – Assigned as Chief of Operations to the USS Challenger.