Category Archives: In Between Days series

Review – Third Worth More Than First

Review – Third Worth More Than First

Third Worth More Than First? Maybe so.
Third Worth More Than First

Background

Third Worth More Than First was a Daranaean story written by FalseBill when I ‘accidentally on purpose’ allowed others to play in my universes.

Plot

FalseBill went with the idea of a second, failed contact between humans and Daranaeans, and he decided it would end in a tragedy. In February of 2160, the Columbia makes second contact with the Daranaeans. And as a result, the hierarchy of Daranaean wives ends up costing that species a ship and everyone on board it. Because the third caste female has no say in what is going on, her wise counsel ends up being ignored. Much like slaves and other submissives, no one gives a damn about anything she has to say. And as a result, the Daranaeans all lose their lives.

Story Postings

Rating

The story is Rated K.

Upshot

Because the Daranaeans really have to be written in a particular fashion, I do not get too excited when anyone gets them ‘wrong’. After all, the hierarchy and the complexity of their relationships can prove daunting to even me. And I’m the one who created that species in the first place. Furthermore, the concept is sound, that a third caste female would be ignored and that could have tragic consequences. My main quibble is that it breaks my own fan fiction ‘canon’, seeing as the second contact technically comes from Take Back the Night.

However, if I see the story as taking place after Take Back the Night, then the timeline works out.  Again, the Daranaeans are really a particular species to write, and I am pleased that FalseBill took the chance and tried to write them.

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Portrait of a Character – Kathalia

Portrait of a Character – Kathalia

Kathalia came about as a counter to Thessa. Not all Daranaean Prime Wives would live as passive-aggressive villainesses.

Kathalia
Image of Italian greyhound dog as Kathalia (image is provided for educational purposes only).

Origins

Because wealthy Daranaean men marry three women, the Emergence stories need a ton of female characters. Furthermore, I loved the euphony of this name, a kind of mix of Katherine or Kathleen and Thalia.

Portrayal

Like the vast majority of Daranaean characters, Kathalia isn’t really ‘played’ by anybody.

Personality

Bubbly, beautiful, and maybe a little overly privileged, Kathalia might have it too easy. Yet that constitutes precisely the idea, that Prime Wives get all of the perks. However, she also has a kind heart, and includes her half-sister, the secondary, Morza, when visiting Cria and in all of her other activities.

Relationships

Trinning

Trinning loves all three of his wives equally, and it shows. While Jamae loved him first, he gives Kathalia and even his third case wife her due. A model of how a loving Daranaean home really should be, Trinning gives this lovely character a truly wonderful life.

Mirror Universe

There exist no impediments to Kathalia existing in the Mirror. Daranaeans don’t have the Y Chromosome Skew, but she probably would not receive different treatment at all. A Prime Wife would do well on either side of the pond.

Quote

“Humans? How interesting. My father says they fought together with us when he battled the Klingons. I am sure they helped him. I should thank them for keeping Father safe.”

Upshot

Delicate Daranaean beauties who can cook will always have advantages. And if they’re also Prime Wives, then the deck is stacked rather heavily in their favor.

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Review – The Golden Lady and the Knave

Review – The Golden Lady and the Knave

The Golden Lady and the Knave came about as a result of a poetry challenge on Wattpad.
The Golden Lady and the Knave

Background

First of all, the Golden Lady and the Knave was the poetry from Intolerance, stripped bare. I wanted to introduce people on Wattpad to the In Between Days series and a little poetry contest provided the incentive.

Plot

While the plot does not exist, the poetry adds some color and substance. However, without the background of who the participants are (Malcolm Reed and Dr. Pamela Hudson), the poetry, while lovely, falls kind of flat in places. Since the characters were not introduced, a curious reader cannot learn how dysfunctional their relationship ends up being, or why he writes what he does. And the reader cannot know how the damages Pamela suffers from, or why she closes herself off so very completely.

Story Postings

Rating

The story is Rated K.

Upshot

Because I do so love the poetry, the story does get something of a pass. After all, it was never truly meant to be a story without the additional trappings of the Intolerance novel. Furthermore, it does introduce readers to my poetry. However, Wattpad is a hard place to break into when it comes to fan fiction writing. The issue is the overabundance of non-Star Trek fan fiction on that site. Those other stories drown out pretty much anything Star Trek unless the reader makes it abundantly clear they are writing within the Kelvin timeline and, quite frankly, it’s really only Kirk slash which goes over (semi-)big. Kirk’s partner, inevitably, ends up as either Spock or McCoy.

And since I am not writing any of that, subtle poetry really gets lost.

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Review – Soldiers’ Marriage Project

Review – Soldiers’ Marriage Project

Soldiers' Marriage Project
Soldiers’ Marriage Project, an early effort, showed me how well I can change the tone of a narrative.

Background

First of all, Soldiers’ Marriage Project came about so as to add a bit of romance to the Romulan war. The idea borrowed a lot from the standard ‘soldier going off to war’ narrative. As a result, a slight World War II vibe attaches to the piece.

Plot

Hence in Soldiers’ Marriage Project, a group of soldiers get married, all at the same time. My inspiration came from the old Unification Church mass weddings. As a result, this story marked the first appearance of Rona Moran, who plays a prominent role in Flight of the Bluebird. Because she helps to finance (and raise even more money for) this massive effort.

As for the soldiers mentioned by her in her report, neither of them make it to anywhere else in my fan fiction. I just wanted them to be archetypes, somewhat similar to how Rona herself treated the story line. Hence the couple don’t really have faces or descriptions (the above image mainly serves as a placeholder for this blog post).

Music

The music is Ain’t No Mountain High Enough by Marvin Gaye and Tammi Terrell.

Story Postings

Rating

The story is Rated K.

Upshot

While I like this story, I had virtually no control over the final product and the direction of the overall anthology. Hence, there could have been more done with it. Alas, such was not to be! However, that might not be so bad, as the couple remain a mystery and Rona comes across as her usual wacky yet ultimately extremely well meaning self. And that foreshadows later stories nicely.

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Portrait of a Character – Q

Portrait of a Character – Q

Q, a canon character, works well for all sorts of deus ex machina.

Q
John de Lancie as Q (gif is provided for educational purposes only)

Origins

First of all, this canon character ended up helping showcase, in Fortune, some very important information. Because he gets to show just what happens to the Digiorno-Madden-Beckett-O’Day-Reed clan in the near and deep future. In addition, the vehicle ended up being the canon episode, The Q and the Grey, which I expanded significantly.

Portrayal

As in canon, Q is portrayed by actor John De Lancie.

Personality

More or less omnipotent and omniscient, Q easily becomes bored by the likes of you or me (or my characters). However, even he has limitations. As a result of needing a good plot device and a means of making him at least a little bit relatable, I made it so he won’t get into the heads of people. And in particular, that meant it took a lot of doing before Lili could convince him to allow her into Kevin Madden-Beckett’s head at the moment of that infant’s untimely death. Because the contact gets cut off, the question of whether there is life after death is not answered in Fortune, and I waited until Equinox, The Three of Us and Everybody Knows This is Nowhere to make the final determination that, yes, there is life after death.

Relationships

Q’s only known relationship is with the female Q, who I have called Joy in my fan fiction. Because Q has issues and wastes time pursuing Kathryn Janeway, I had Lili give him some help in terms of connecting with Joy.

Theme Music

While Q doesn’t really have theme music, per se, he does try to persuade Lili to show him the ways of human sex and sexuality by playing Marvin Gaye’s Let’s Get it On, a song he describes as ‘foolproof’.

Mirror Universe

Because Q does not seem to be 100% from our universe, I suspect he flits between the two all the time. And he may go to other universes, such as the 49 centimeter radiation band.

Quote

“Oh, that’s right. You don’t know about Kevin.”

Upshot

Because this character has so many gifts, he can be hard to relate to. In addition, even in canon, I feel the writers sometimes didn’t know how to handle him. They made him obnoxious and overly obsessed with humans. Instead, I decided to give him doubts and hesitations.

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Review – Razor

Review – Razor

Razor
Razor, a tiny drabble, does not really need much of a review.

Background

First of all, Razor was written in response to a drabble prompt of the same name.

Plot

In addition, like the vast, vast majority of drabbles, Razor simply does not have much of a plot. Instead, it offers up a view of Tripp Tucker’s life and date with someone – probably a human, and certainly not T’Pol or even an alien guest – and a time at the movies. Hence this quick drabble shows a possible date between Tripp and a human woman, and it’s possibly Amanda Cole if they had gone further than one kiss. It was prompted on The Delphic Expanse;  the prompt word was the same as the title.

Real original, right?

However, it’s possible the prompt writer did not consider horror films when creating the prompt. So there’s that. Small comfort.

Yes, it’s possible to not enjoy your own work. I see no reason to expand on this one at all.

Story Postings

Rating

The story is Rated K.

Upshot

In addition, most drabbles suffer from length and depth issues, and this one provides no exception. Furthermore, the story breaks canon and does not even dovetail well with my own fan fiction timeline. So while it does fit into the In Between Days timeline, that is just barely the case. Hence I do not pretend to be much of a fan of it and I have only posted it one place for good reason.

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Review – Prison Break

Review – Prison Break

Prison Break
Prison Break exists in the Dispatches from the Romulan War universe. Hence it dovetails well with In Between Days.

Background

First of all, I wrote Prison Break as a kind of homage to World War II prison break films such as The Great Escape. However, the Romulan War served as the backdrop.

Plot

Hence the concept behind Prison Break consisted of showcasing, from a journalist’s perspective, how some captured humans had gotten out of a Romulan prison. Therefore, this marked the first time I wrote about Berren Five, a location I have used in the HG Wells stories.

In addition, the original plan meant no one had survived an original attack. However, I convinced the series runner to allow for this kind of a different story. Therefore, the former prisoners detail everything from using ration packets to shore up tunnels to how they got rid of the dirt (a nod to The Great Escape, one of my favorite films, ever).

Story Postings

Rating

The story is Rated K.

Upshot

Because a prison escape story can feel rather uplifting, the intent also involved giving hope to the families and turn the series around a bit, as it had stagnated and had gotten rather negative. While that may be expected with war stories, it just seemed a tad too much, and nonstop. Hence the escape story and the reunions of the former POWs with their pleasantly surprised families had a purpose. It evoked the same sort of hope and positivity that can happen in the midst of any war.

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Portrait of a Character – Tracey Carter

Portrait of a Character – Tracey Carter

Origins

Tracey Carter was originally created out of some petulance on my part. Because I was posting on a site requiring beta reading before posting, I got tired of that. I didn’t want to do that as it was fan fiction. Furthermore, I was seeing suggestions of changing some of the fundamentals of Reversal. With so much dependent upon that story, imperfect as it is, I wasn’t interested in subsequent ‘fixes’ which I felt would gut the plot. However, I was curious about the beta reading process and reeled of Smells with two brand-new characters in order to see what it was all about. Hence my reasoning was to offer up two characters I didn’t really care about in the hopes that I wouldn’t be offended by any suggestions and would potentially learn something.

And then I mostly forgot about that story, but revisited it when I began writing the E2 stories as I needed names and I needed relationships. Tracey and Osh fit the bill rather nicely.

Portrayal

Tracey Carter
Rachel McAdams as Tracey Carter (image is provided for educational purposes only)

Tracey Carter is played by actress Rachel McAdams.

I am particularly thrilled that she plays a linchpin character in The Time Traveler’s Wife, a story which relates her to the Wells series.

Personality

A bit silly and kind of boy-crazy, Tracey quite literally embraces the generational nature of the NX-01. Even though Maryam scolds her and reminds her that she (Tracey) is no longer a teenager, Tracey acts that way anyway. She sets her sights on Oscar and they hook up, which eventually turns into more. During the first kick back in time, she gives birth to the first child on board, Amanda, who she and Osh call Almendra.

Relationships

Tracey’s only known relationship is with Oscar Tiburón. Even after the third version of the Enterprise makes it through, Trace and Osh still get together. Much like Meredith and Rex, Susie and Mario, and Lili and Malcolm (although not Lili and Jay or Lili and José), their relationship carries through to the prime timeline.

Mirror Universe

Mirror Tracey Carter
Mirror Tracey Carter

There are no impediments to Tracey existing in the Mirror Universe.  And as an engineer, she would potentially have more opportunities than many other women. Would she still end up with Oscar? It’s hard to say. A decent-looking and somewhat intelligent MACO would be able to support a wife and family, but at the same time he could potentially be of interest to Empress Hoshi. And Hoshi’s jealousy could cost Tracey her job or even her life.

Quote

“His uni patch says O. Tiburón. Oliver? Otto? Orson? Omar?”

Upshot

While the creation of this character was imperfectly executed, her subsequent reuse and redemption made her more valuable. Even though this character isn’t exactly a star, she’s a useful part of the ensemble.

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Review – Infinite Diversity

Review – Infinite Diversity

Infinite Diversity

Background

Infinite diversity in infinite combinations! First of all, Infinite Diversity was created as a means of showcasing LGBTQ stories within the context of Star Trek fan fiction. And while it says some good things, it does not really fit in with canon, personal or otherwise.

Plot

Because Infinite Diversity exists as a more or less anthology, it does not, truly, have any sort of a plot to speak of. Hence the main themes include the colors of the rainbow and any prompts. Most of the stories take place in the Interphases E2 timeline.

Therefore, the prompts and the colors devolve as follows:

  1. Wisdom (Red) – Dave and Frank dye their cabin in rainbow colors as they dye tee shirts for Pride Week. And the last dye job makes them look like serial killers (prime timeline).
  2. Fairness (Orange) – Diana and Preece Ti discuss why choosing each other isn’t unfair at all, even though there are no other choices (E2 timeline, first kick back in time).
  3. Grace (Yellow) – Diana’s funeral, where Jonathan gives the eulogy to cover Diana’s widow, Leah (prime timeline, refers to the Bread story).
  4. Melancholy (Green) – Kelsey cross dresses in private (E2 timeline, first kick back in time but also refers to the prime timeline story, In Memory of Kelsey Haber).
  5. Distance (Blue) – Luke and Preston fight  (E2 timeline, first kick back in time).
  6. Generosity (Indigo) – asexual pilot Christian Harris volunteers for a dangerous mission so others don’t have to (E2 timeline, either kick back in time).
  7. and Perseverance (Violet) – Melissa and Norri try to feed infant Tommy (prime timeline, references Temper).

Music

While the only song is this one, it’s a good one, particularly considering that character Kelsey Haber, in the prime timeline commits suicide. Hence he may very well have been more melancholy than he lets on here.

Story Postings

Infinite Diversity on Ad Astra.

Rating

The story is Rated K.

Upshot

While I feel my heart was in the right place when I wrote Infinite Diversity, it could have used more of a plot.

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Portrait of a Character – Jacob Hayes

Portrait of a Character – Jacob Hayes

Origins

Jacob Hayes, first of all, is an absolutely necessary character in Concord and even in the overall IBD/HGW timeline. However, Jacob is never ‘seen on camera’ in the story, although his voice comes through in a letter. Furthermore, his wife, Charlotte, talks about him all the time.

Portrayal

Jacob Hayes
Steven Culp as Jacob Hayes (image is presented for educational purposes only)

Jacob Hayes is played by actor Steven Culp and is yet another link to that character. I wanted this actor in order to demonstrate the connection, through time, of Lili and Jay, and Lili and Doug, but also, in general, of the people who would eventually populate the NX-01.

Personality

Most noteworthy, Jacob is one of the few characters I have ever written whose personality is generally unknown. While Charlotte is ever faithful and certainly loves him, she also confides to Malcolm that he (Jacob) does not always help with the dishes. He is one of the first people in Concord to volunteer and join the militia,. His patriotism is never in question. And he is utterly committed to, if necessary, dying for American independence. Fortunately, he doesn’t have to, although he is wounded in action.

And then after the war, when Charlotte finally conceives and their son, Patrick Laurent is born, I see him as a devoted father. However, given the average life expectancy of that era, an older father would not be expected to live to see his only child marry.

Relationships

Jacob’s only known relationship is with his wife, Charlotte. He clearly loves her a great deal and wants very much to return to her as quickly as possible. While he volunteers for the sake of patriotism, he makes it clear that he misses her. Furthermore, he trusts her with Malcolm, even though he does not know Malcolm at all (and Malcolm is ostensibly the enemy, a somewhat neat prefiguring of Harbinger).

Mirror Universe

There are no impediments to Jacob existing in the Mirror. And in fact, he is a necessary part of both the Mirror and Prime Universe timelines, as he is a direct ancestor of Jay in our universe. And his counterpart is Doug’s direct ancestor.

Because I write so many MU soldiers, Jacob most likely would be one on a regular basis, just as Jeremiah (Doug’s father) is. That is, beyond being a volunteer in the militia, an MU Jacob would most likely take up arms as his formal profession.

Quote

“War is brutal, and I am glad to be done with it. Our cause is just, but too many youth have perished already. I cannot wait to return to your faithful arms, and pray you will be the Sarah to my Abraham.

I remain, as ever,

Your Jacob”

Upshot

While I would love to write a sequel to Concord, I am not so sure there would be too much interest in it. This is because the anchor character (Malcolm Reed) cannot be there. Furthermore, it would not have much of a science fiction bent at all, as the time travel element would already be wrapped up. And that’s a pity, as I love the story and I enjoyed writing that time period.

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