Category Archives: Interphases series

Review – Smells

Review – Smells

Smells
Smells lingered over this little story, just like they do in real life.

Background

First of all, Smells was written because 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 off 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 the 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.

Plot

Because Smells was not intended to have a plot, the story progresses linearly although it barely goes anywhere. Essentially, Trace and Osh discover they are going to become parents. Furthermore, Phlox once again proves he has the lousiest bedside manner of any Starfleet doctor, ever, in the history of all Starfleet doctors.

Story Postings

Rating

The story is Rated K+.

Upshot

Most drabbles suffer from length and depth issues, and this one is no exception. However, the story is decent even if a little oddly executed. Certainly, within the E2 time frame in particular, this sort of thing could happen.

In addition, do you like this page? Tweet it!


Finally, you can find me on .

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.

So do you like this page? Tweet it!


And you can find me on .

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.

So do you like this page? Tweet it!


And you can find me on .

Portrait of a Character – Makan Sinthasomphone

Portrait of a Character – Makan Sinthasomphone

Makan Sinthasomphone is necessary for Concord to work.

Origins

Makan Sinthasomphone was a means to an end. This character was brought to the fore in order to be able to fix and engineer Robert Lennox’s return in Concord (and, at the same time, return Malcolm Reed to the correct place and time period). Furthermore, I needed to give Monisha Padir someone to talk to. She would have to bounce her ideas off someone or other. After all, she’s not an engineer; she’s a historian.

Portrayal

Makan Sinthasomphone
Ananda Everingham as Makan Sinthasomphone (image is provided for educational purposes only)

Makan Sinthasomphone is played by actor Ananda Everingham.

As is the case with the rest of my Star Trek fan fiction, I like to try to match the actor’s ethnic origins to the character’s. In this instance, it’s close but I could not get it quite right. Makan is Lao and Ananda is Thai.

Furthermore, I wanted someone who at least superficially resembled Konerak Sinthasomphone. While the origin of Makan’s surname is utterly morbid, the intention was just to have a Lao surname. Since Concord is a rather black and white (by race) story, I wanted the future time travel team to mostly be Asian. I intend no disrespect to the Sinthasomphone family. Please do not infer any.

Personality

Smart, albeit a little impatient, Makan can’t quite figure out what went wrong with moving Robert Lennox in time.

Relationships

Makan has no known relationships, and I do not ‘ship him with Monisha Padir.

Mirror Universe

Barking up the Muse Tree | jespah | Janet Gershen-Siegel | Mirror Makan
Mirror Makan

There are no impediments to Makan existing in the Mirror Universe.  However, the later you get in the timeline, the longer the odds are. Because engineers are necessary in any universe, he could be wealthy or even an object of a lot of women’s desires.

Quote

“And we don’t have any evidence that he’s still alive, either. He’s like Schrödinger’s Cat.”

Upshot

While he’s a minor character at best, Makan serves his purpose well.

So do you like this page? Tweet it!


And you can find me on .

Review – If I Could Do it All Over Again

Review – If I Could Do it All Over Again

Review – If I Could Do it All Over Again

Background

If I Could Do it All Over Again was written in response to a prompt of the same name. And of course the concept was, if you could have an instant replay, would you take it? Furthermore, how would it work?

Barking up the Muse Tree | jespah | Janet Gershen-Siegel | Everybody Knows This Is Nowhere
Everybody Knows This Is Nowhere | If I Could Do it All Over Again

However, I eventually realized that the story did fit in with my own personal canon, but I could alter it. How could I make it fit?

Plot

Captain Jonathan Archer mourns his Ikaaran bride from the first E2 kick back in time – Ebrona – before he meets Esilia. Because the relationship between Lili and José was already established in Together, I had to follow that. However, I wanted to use the E2 time frame as a vehicle for exploring a possible relationship between Lili and Jay. Furthermore, I wanted Malcolm to have someone, because I had always hated how that went down in canon.

Since I wanted these other relationships to work out, I had to do something different. Hence I created two kicks back in time. Most noteworthy, because the short story established an early death for the Ikaaran species, I had to determine a manner in which to get that convincingly onto the page.

So some of my inspiration came from the old TOS episode, The Mark of Gideon. In that story, an overpopulated world use’s Captain Kirk’s recovery from Vegan choriomeningitis as a means of obtaining germs to deliberately sicken and kill off a part of their population. It’s implied that they don’t believe in birth control. Hence, I gave a similar purpose to the Ikaarans, except they would send their youth out for farming stints in order to obtain more food and then return to marry. However, their bodies would have almost an effective kill switch, and they would die young because of genetic manipulation.

As a result, Ebrona (and eventually Esilia) dies young. And this story, which is about that event, is instead read by Archer during the second kick back in time, as he goes over old logs.

Story Postings

Rating

The story is Rated K.

Upshot

I loved being able to use this story in a rather unexpected and different fashion but still get what I needed out of it.

So do you like this page? Tweet it!


You can find me on .

Portrait of a Character – Robert Lennox

Portrait of a Character – Robert Lennox

Origins

Robert Lennox had somewhat mixed and strange origins. Because I needed a means of getting Malcolm Reed home during the events of Concord, it took me a while to figure out just how that could possibly be accomplished.  Since I had a Colonial story but very little else, I had to figure out a way to make it all work within Star Trek. As a result, I needed a means of traveling through time.

Hence Lennox is a time traveler, and he is a professional one, much like Richard Daniels. And so he works with Monisha Padir and Makan Sinthasomphone.

Portrayal

Robert Lennox
Ioan Gruffudd as Robert Lennox

Robert Lennox is played by actor Ioan Gruffudd.

I find this Welsh actor not only to be rather handsome, but also striking in period costume. Furthermore, he would have the correct accent for Charlotte, Jim, and Benjamin to believe he (Robert) was a redcoat.

However, the truth is quite different, as Robert’s mission was to observe the NX-01 at the commencement of the Xindi war. Instead, though, he and Malcolm both end up in Concord, Massachusetts in 1775.

Personality

Professional and intelligent, Robert’s mission is solely to observe. However, he probably would have inadvertently changed history anyway, as he tells Malcolm to duck when they face the enemy. Since there is incoming cannon fire, the warning is a wise one. And neither Lennox nor Malcolm are supposed to be there, but Lennox does not know that yet. Furthermore, when Malcolm first arrives, Lennox comments on the smoke and noise.

However, there is no way he could have known that, unless he had been dumped there earlier. Or maybe it wasn’t Robert’s first time in Concord. That presents an intriguing idea; I might write it some day.

Relationships

Robert has no known relationships.

Mirror Universe

There are no impediments to Robert existing in the Mirror Universe, although the later you get in the timeline, the moreMirror Robert Lennox difficult the odds become.

Good-looking and intelligent people tend to rise to the top of our universe, and the Mirror rewards similar characteristics, albeit mixed with a healthy dollop of violence, sex, and cruelty.

And a smart professional time traveler could have a lot of advantages.

Quote

“I can’t say much. But there was an experiment in time travel. I was to travel in a pod and observe you.”

Upshot

While Robert is unconscious for a lot of Concord, he’s awake long enough for Charlotte and Malcolm to get a decent impression of him. And that might be enough.

So do you like this page? Tweet it!


And you can find me on .

Portrait of a Character – Jim Warren

Portrait of a Character – Jim Warren

Origins

Jim Warren founds a dynasty. As a part of the Concord book, it made sense to add a character who would be able to do a lot of the heavy lifting at the Hayes farm while Jacob was off to war. Benjamin was really too old, so I came up with Jim. Jim is named for the Huckleberry Finn escaped slave character, although he and his family are not slaves (however, it’s possible their ancestors were brought to the Americas as slaves originally).

Portrayal

Jim Warren
Chiwetel Ejoifor as Jim Warren (image is provided for educational purposes only)

Jim Warren is played by actor Chiwetel Ejoifor. Because I used this actor to portray Anthony Parker, that signals the sharp-eyed reader that Jim is Anthony’s ancestor.

Personality

Friendly, upbeat, and with a bit of a wicked sense of humor (see the quote; he’s teaching Malcolm how to milk a cow), Malcolm relies on Jim almost as much as Charlotte does. Malcolm refers to Jim as the farming expert when they work together. And this is absolutely not what would usually happen in an interaction between two men of different races during that time period. Malcolm, of course, is a man of the future, but Jim is certainly not. So does this conversation change Jim and even give him confidence? Maybe it does; that’s an interesting idea and I may write something about that some day.

Relationships

Jim has no known relationships. However, he clearly marries and fathers at least one child, as he is part of the foundational stock for the Warren and Parker families. So he is an ancestor to both Rosemary Parker and Lakeisha Warren, and a more distant ancestor of Anthony Parker. Jim is a key character in the timeline.

Mirror Universe

Mirror Jim Warren
Mirror Jim Warren

Jim must exist in the Mirror Universe because Anthony Parker is from there. The Mirror is a rough place, and agriculture is not favored. Hence it is entirely possible he would live in grinding poverty unless he took up arms. And this would not necessarily be a race-related issue; I feel it would relate more to class.

Quote

“You gotta do more’n that, sir. You ever had a woman who had a lot up here? And she, uh, maybe didn’t mind if you were a little, um, rough? Do it that way.”

Upshot

As I’ve noted in most of the other biographies from this book, I would love to write a sequel to Concord, but there just doesn’t seem to be a good place to put it.

So do you like this page? Tweet it!


And you can find me on .

Portrait of a Character – Charlotte Hayes

Portrait of a Character – Charlotte Hayes

Origins

Charlotte Hayes – necessary character, and the driver of the Malcolm Reed-centric story, Concord. Malcolm needed a place to sleep and a hostess. Enter Charlotte Lilienne O’Day Hayes. Furthermore, this story responds directly to the canon letters Malcolm writes during the Shuttlepod One episode. I had always felt those letters signified a person who had trouble letting himself go with anyone. Furthermore, Malcolm, I felt (and still feel) begins his dating life attracted to either inappropriate women (such as Ruby Brannagh, and that is a canon relationship) or are unattainable (Talas, and that is a canon flirtation).

As a result, Charlotte is certainly unattainable, but Malcolm’s experiences in Concord change him, even though technically the whole trip is supposed to have been reset.

Portrayal

Charlotte Lilienne O'Day Hayes, Charlotte Hayes
Naomi Watts as Charlotte Lilienne O’Day Hayes (image is presented for educational purposes only)

Charlotte is played by actress Naomi Watts, as yet another connection to Reversal.

In addition, I wanted Charlotte to connect directly to Lili, not only in temperament, but also in looks.

Personality

Dutiful, compassionate, and somewhat intelligent, Charlotte keeps home and hearth while her husband, Jacob, goes off to war. She relies rather heavily on Benjamin, Jim, and Dorcas Warren. However, Charlotte is still very much her own person. Furthermore, while she and Malcolm ponder existence, she holds her own in the conversation.

Relationships

Charlotte’s only known relationship is with her husband, Jacob, although she flirts a bit with Malcolm.

Mirror Universe

Charlotte Hayes
Mirror Charlotte Hayes

Much like Jacob is a necessary component of the Mirror Universe, so is Charlotte, as she is also a direct ancestor of Doug. Furthermore, she is a consanguineous relative of Lili.

In the Mirror, a woman such as Charlotte would be beholden to a man. Due to the existence of their counterpart descendants, Jacob Hayes must be that man. And he could potentially offer her a decent life. Because agriculture is not favored on the other side of the pond, though, they could potentially be somewhat impoverished.  So they would depend on any salary he would get as a soldier.

Quote

“The following summer, I was fifteen and we spent the summer together here, but mainly apart as he realized he needed to begin to understand how the farm truly worked, and how to manage it. That was always the plan, for it to be his, and he attended college in order to be better with finances and the like. But he had little practical experience with actually running the place. His vacation was not much of a vacation. And on his last day at home before he returned for his final year of school, we talked together and we agreed that he would graduate and return in the spring and he would bring a ring then, for me.”

Upshot

I really loved Charlotte’s fiestiness. She is, in a way, a colonial version of Lili. However, I have no idea how these characters could ever possibly return for a sequel.

So do you like this page? Tweet it!


And you can find me on .

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.

So do you like this page? Tweet it!


And you can find me on .

Review – Free

Review – Free

Free is yet another drabble.

Barking up the Muse Tree | jespah | Janet Gershen-Siegel | Interphases | Free
Interphases

Background

For a story where the title is the inspiring word, I decided to go with a rather serendipitous find. I have always loved the meaning of names. And I admit I have used names’ meanings in order to further my own writing agendas. The story is started and a name is chosen, and then I look at the meaning. Hence if the meaning helps me out, I will follow it. But if it does not, I am all right with that.

Plot

The human name Charles means ‘free man’ (in fact, when Lili and Doug marry in A Kind of Blue, and she has to reveal the meaning of her name, she says ‘free woman’, as her true first name is Charlotte).  Because the idea proved irresistible, I decided to go with T’Pol and Tripp talking about how to name their as-yet unborn child.

As I wrote this drabble, I was already working on Everybody Knows This is Nowhere. Hence this very short story was folded into that much larger one.

For sharp-eyed readers, the three-book E2 series, Reflections Down a Corridor, Entanglements, and The Three of Us allows for one set of circumstances to unfold. In Everybody, another set of circumstances arises. While some situations work out as almost an instant replay, others differ.

Hence for this particular scene, the storyline allows for a scene missing from the original trilogy. In the original trilogy, there is no naming scene. But I wanted there to be a reason why they chose the name Lorian.

Story Postings

Rating

The story is Rated K.

Upshot

Like a lot of drabbles, this one suffers from being too short. However, I was able to convert it rather neatly into a scene in Everybody Knows this is Nowhere.

Like this page? Tweet it!


You can find me on .