Tag Archives: HG Wells

Portrait of a Character – Steven Reed

Portrait of a Character – Steven Reed

Origins

Considering the spelling of his name, Steven Reed is yet another shout out to actor Steven Culp. Because of the dreamy aspect of the Recruitment, the shout out to Culp dovetails a bit with Reversal, which is the book that is all about dreams.

Portrayal

Steven Reed
Paul Bettany as Steven Reed (image is for educational purposes only)

Steven Reed is played by actor Paul Bettany. I wanted this actor as I also have him playing Declan Reed. Hence, Steven Reed has connections to both Malcolm and Doug (just like Richard does).

Personality

When Section 31 recruits Telatharia, Steven is there in order to try to throw her and her fellow candidates off the scent. However, he also helps her out just a tiny bit, and his mere presence seems to tell her she’s on the right track. It’s unknown whether he helps anyone else out, consciously or not. And in fact, it’s entirely possible Telatharia was the sole job candidate, anyway.

Relationships

Steven has no known relationships.

Mirror Universe

Mirror Steven Reed
Mirror Steven Reed

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

However, a spy could find work in either universe. Hence, if he exists, Steven would be sitting pretty, and would potentially have his pick of females, so long as he could trust any of them.

But he probably can’t.

Quote

“No one is trustworthy.”

Upshot

While I am uncertain about where to put this character and what to do with him (or whether he should get an encore), I like the idea of him. In particular, his existence means the Reed-HayesO’Day-Beckett-MaddenDigiorno family lasts into the deep future in more than one place. It’s not just Richard and Eleanor, and that makes me happy.

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Portrait of a Character – Tina April

Portrait of a Character – Tina April

Origins

To play up just how much of a rat Rick Daniels is at the beginning of the Times of the HG Wells series, he had to have a girlfriend, who he would be cheating on. Enter Tina, who is named for the girlfriend in Quantum Leap and for canon starship captain Robert April (in fact, her father is named Bob).

Portrayal

Portrait of a Character – Tina April
Amy Smart as Tina April (image is provided for educational purposes only)

Tina is played by actress Amy Smart.

I wanted a lovely, younger actress who would be a bit out of Rick’s league.

Personality

This intelligent and sophisticated schoolteacher is not above using tears to try to get her way (she doesn’t succeed).

Relationships

Rick Daniels

Tina and Rick meet when Eleanor introduces her friend to her brother. It’s one of the initial drivers of Temper and is part of how the deep future part of that storyline gets kicked off. The relationship is mainly sexual; Rick breaks them up when she starts to insist on knowing where he is going and that she wants him to meet her father.

Troy Scott

During Spring Thaw, they start dating.  Tina pushes for things to become serious a lot more quickly than Troy does.

Mirror Universe

There is no reason why Tina can’t be in the Mirror Universe.

Portrait of a Character – Tina April
Amy Smart as the Mirror Universe Tina (image is presented for educational purposes only)

She would have to be sexier and tougher. Since I have already established the role of ship’s teacher, Tina could be a much later version of Susan Cheshire, but without the alcoholism.

Quote

“You’ve got an implanted communicator. You’re quiet about what you do – and don’t think I haven’t noticed when you’ve oh so artfully changed the subject whenever I’ve asked you anything. I know more about what you think of Plato’s Republic than I do about what you’ll do or where you’ll go when you leave this apartment.”

Upshot

This initially throwaway character provides some grounding to Rick, at least in the beginning, and a person for Eleanor to confide in. But I don’t know if she’ll be back.

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Portrait of a Character – Milton Walker

Portrait of a Character – Milton Walker

Origins

Portrait of a Character – Milton Walker
Jeremy Irons as Milton Walker

I needed a ringleader for the Perfectionists, someone who would have murky motives for mucking about in time. He would also be an Eligian Order monk, allegedly devoted to St. Eligius. Enter Milton.

Portrayal

Milton is played by veteran actor Jeremy Irons. He’s smart and can play mysterious and creepy rather well.

Personality

Highly intelligent and initially motivated by somewhat pure motives, it all goes south rather quickly for Milton and his immoral, bratty daughter, Dr. Helen Walker. By the time he’s ordered the killing of agent Anthony Parker, Milton’s soul is lost.

Relationships

Enid Walker

Next to nothing is known about Helen’s mother. They are divorced when the series begins.

Empress Hoshi Sato

In order to escape the Temporal Integrity Commission, Milton hides out in the past, and in the Mirror, and begins an affair with the Empress. Much like with her other conquests, she doesn’t care about him one bit.

Mirror Universe

I haven’t written a Mirror Universe version of Milton yet.

Portrait of a Character – Milton Walker
Mirror Milton

There are a lot fewer Mirror counterparts in the deep future as the odds stack higher and higher against them. But if there was to be a Mirror Milton, I think he would be just as furtive, but his motives would be a lot worse.

I think he would have a lot fewer qualms about using his position to order the death of someone like Parker.

Quote

“You were a philanthropist, you donated all sorts of services and goods to the research into curing dreaded maladies like Piaris Syndrome and Irumodic Syndrome. People thought you were kind and great, a Santa Claus for hospitals! And then you got the idea that improving and perfecting time would lead to earlier medical breakthroughs. You idiot.”

Upshot

Milton doesn’t have a lot to recommend him. He’s ruthless, he’s careless, and he’s not above killing an incalcitrant agent or telling his own daughter to try to ensnare Richard Daniels.

I like him as a character, but definitely not as a person.

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Review – Dishing it Out

Review – Dishing it Out

Dishing it out is a crossover.

Background

Barking Up The Muse Tree | jespah | Janet Gershen-Siegel | Lili| Naomi Watts | pregnant | Dishing it Out
Lili (image of a pregnant Naomi Watts is for educational purposes only)

False Bill and I wanted to put together a funny crossover story where both of our universes could collide.

Complicating matters was the fact that his chef character, the Caitian Naurr, disappears during the Romulan War in his fan fiction.

Therefore, there were some temporal limitations. This required that Lili be pregnant with Joss, but it also gave us an idea about temporal shenanigans.

Plot

Three storylines occur at what, to the reader, is the same time and place. But the reality is that they cover three separate years and two universes.  In one storyline, the Mirror Universe version of Erika Hernandez works as a chef for the Empress Hoshi Sato. Hoshi is mulling over her next conquests and angry about the food on the ISS Defiant. In 2158, a very pregnant Lili, along with Naurr, is cooking at Reversal. Doug tells her to take it easy, and some of the interplay between them foreshadows later issues in Together and Fortune.  The third storyline is in the deeper future, in the HG Wells timeline, as Rick Daniels, Carmen Calavicci, Otra D’Angelo, HD Avery, Levi Cavendish, and Kevin O’Connor all celebrate at a year-end banquet with some of their mirror counterparts, which are characters created by False Bill.

A dispute and a small prank pushes one of False Bill’s characters to send unauthorized cookbooks to Empress Hoshi’s time period. But the temporal transporters are only working to send people forward in time but not back! What to do?

Send in the chefs!

Story Postings

Rating

The story is Rated K.

Upshot

I like how the threads came together. We also had a  lot of comedic fun with the story, adding an invading mouse army and a bit of slapstick humor. Others agreed, and it won the crossover challenge during the 2014 Twelve Trials of Triskelion on Ad Astra.

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Portrait of a Character – Annette (Windy) (Pollan) Bradley

Portrait of a Character – Annette (Windy) (Pollan) Bradley

Origins

I wanted a hippie chick for Richard Daniels to hook up with in 1970 Kent State, and for him to meet at a protest. Enter Windy.

Portrayal

Windy is portrayed by Melanie Mayron.

Portrait of a Character – Annette (Windy) (Pollan) Bradley
Annette “Windy” Bradley in 1970

I love how authentic she looks, particularly in the image I have selected, which is from a film called Girlfriends.

She is not meant to be knock out beautiful.

Personality

Portrait of a Character – Annette (Windy) (Pollan) Bradley
Annette Bradley Pollan, an older image that Rick sees in an alternate history

Casual and a bit cynical, Windy is the kind of woman who Rick often ends up with. She is free with her sexuality but also friendly and sympathetic. In 1970, just before the shootings at Kent State University, they talk about the possibility of him being sent to Viet Nam to fight in the war. They go to bed together having known each other for only a few hours. He leaves in the morning when the shooting starts, but their parting is at least somewhat cordial.

When he and Sheilagh Bernstein return in order to repair the issues with the timeline that they themselves have created, he has to leave a lot more abruptly, and ducks out before she wakes up. Angry at him, and at herself for being so free with her body, Windy at least pays lip service to the idea of maybe not having sex quite so quickly, and choosing her partners a bit more carefully.

She never learns that he is a time traveler.

Relationships

Windy’s hookup with Rick can hardly be called a relationship. In the alternate timeline, her married name is Pollan (named for Back to the Future‘s Michael J. Fox‘s real-life wife, Tracy Pollan), but there is nothing about her husband or whether they remain wed for life.

Theme Music

Of course Windy’s music is the Association’s Windy. The song was popular three years before 1970 and it is the kind of bouncy, optimistic song that a girl of maybe 16 – 18 years of age would like and want to use as her nickname.

Mirror Universe

There is no reason why Annette can’t exist in the Mirror Universe. But I don’t think she’d call herself Windy.

Portrait of a Character – Annette (Windy) (Pollan) Bradley
Annette in the Mirror Universe

I feel she would be like a lot of the Mirror Universe women I write – overly dependent on men for their happiness, safety, and well-being.

Quote

“Right. It all seems so sterile. If we could really see the times, you know, somehow insert ourselves into history and really be there, man, that would surely be amazing.”

Upshot

For a woman who Rick never sees again, he does remember her, and even keeps a souvenir – a pair of quarters she had saved up for her laundry.


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Spotlight on Ring Phasers

Spotlight on Ring Phasers

Ring phasers were a quick idea to solve a problem I did not expect.

Background

Spotlight on Ring Phasers
Ring Phaser (actually a Za’Tarc ring from the Stargate universe)

When I originally wrote the Times of the HG Wells series, I had an idea that there would be small phasers. However, I did not really fully develop the concept. Because, in canon, phasers have fairly steadily gotten smaller in size. Therefore, it made some sense  to have them, in the very deep future, be rather small pieces of equipment. This also worked as a cover, for Rick Daniels and other time travelers would need to carry a weapon to a lot of time periods where carrying such a weapon would be problematic.

Appearance

It was not until Multiverse II and Another Piece of the Action that I realized that this would be rather useful.

Spotlight on Ring Phasers
English: Ring made of tungsten (tungstencarbide?) Deutsch: Ring aus Wolframcarbid (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

For characters needing to hide a phaser (and maybe even make it look like something else), the idea of a ring configuration works.

And for female time travelers in particular in history, they could even place the ring phaser onto their left ring finger and claim that it was a wedding ring.

The idea is that the ring phaser is about as plain and nondescript as the idea to the right. Furthermore, time travelers would often have to worry about theft and beatings. Therefore, the article could not intentionally appear ostentatious or particularly expensive.

Upshot

For a small afterthought type of original technology, I think it turned out pretty well. It would not shock me if a deep future storyline, either in the books or some hypothetical to-be-aired series or film, featured something like them.

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Portrait of a Character – Von

Portrait of a Character – Von

Origins

Portrait of a Character – Von
Von Hayes

I needed a bad guy character for the Times of the HG Wells series who would not be found out immediately. Enter Von, who is named for retired Phillies outfielder Von Hayes (yet another backhanded reference to Jay Hayes).

Von was meant to be someone who Carmen and Kevin in particular would rely on, mistakenly, for far too long as temporal damage continued to happen.

Portrayal

I see Peter Dinklage in this role.

Portrait of a Character – Von
Peter Dinklage as Von

The actor is brilliant and interesting; I feel he can play pretty much any role thrown at him.

Frankly, I am a bit surprised that I have not yet seen a photomanipulation of him in a Star Trek uniform or as a Ferengi or any other species (including human).

Personality

A bit secretive and paranoid, Von has plenty of reason to be so – he is working in cahoots with the Perfectionists, the enemy faction. But he also has a softer side. There is a garden in the center of the Temporal Integrity Commission. Even though he is not required to do so, he is the one who prunes the roses and tends to the day lilies and lilacs and whatnot. He uses an old-fashioned pair of shears that figure somewhat prominently in Spring Thaw.

Relationships

Von has no known relationships at this time.

Mirror Universe

Portrait of a Character – Von
Mirror Von

There aren’t necessarily any impediments to Von existing in the Mirror Universe. Perhaps he’d be honorable, but I really would prefer him as being tightly wound.

Quote

“Anyone can use those shears. I know she did.”

Upshot

I like this character but he was sorely underutilized. I’m not sure if or when or how I could possibly revisit him, but he was a character with potential who should have had more depth to him.

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Review – Shake Your Body

Review – Shake Your Body

Shake what?

Background

Before 9/11, for a lot of people, their “where were you when you heard?” moment occurred when the Challenger space shuttle exploded.

Barking Up the Must Tree | jespah | Janet Gershen-Siegel | Shake Your Body
Shake Your Body

So at the time, I was teaching as a part of getting credit toward my Juris Doctorate. So the incident was rattling not only because of the deaths, but also because of Christa McAuliffe‘s connections to New England and teaching. In addition, she and I were even born on the same day (albeit 14 years apart).

Plot

Review – Shake Your Body
As the Perfectionists, enemies of the Temporal Integrity Commission, work to assure that the Challenger does not explode, the Varg-i-yeh are coming to attack. Hence Helen Walker and her father escape to the Mirror Universe, where Richard Daniels is not allowed to pursue them. Also, on Lafa II, Malcolm Reed and his wife, Lili O’Day Beckett Reed, see a mysterious light in the sky, which turns out to be the Walkers, in a stolen time ship, opening up a passageway to the Mirror Universe.

By the time the book is finished, three members of the Temporal Integrity Commission are dead, and the alien enemy is practically on their doorstep.

Music

Story Postings

Rating

The story is Rated T.

Upshot

The story works pretty well although I will be the first to admit I was getting tired of writing this series.

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Portrait of a Character – Helen Walker

Portrait of a Character – Helen Walker

Helen Walker comes from an older storyline.

Origins

For the HG Wells stories, there had to be a few central villains. And so Helen and Milton Walker were born. He’s her father.

In the older time travel series that I had created, Helen was actually Tom Grant‘s ex, and she was mighty bossy and ruthless there, eventually joining their enemies. Hence Helen remained an enemy but some of the details were changed.

Portrayal

Helen is portrayed by actress Katie Holmes.

Portrait of a Character – Helen Walker

I wanted someone who would be pretty but could, behind a lovely smile and a sweet visage, be ruthless.

Personality

Spoiled and amoral, Helen is the face that launched a thousand time ships. But she hardly deserves the attention or the accolades. Instead, she’s tasked with “putting right what once went wrong” in history, as a nod to the television series, Quantum Leap. But Helen doesn’t do it out of altruism or a desire to get home or anything of the sort. Instead, she’s a (fairly) obedient soldier of her father’s. His dream is to save people and to be the one who prevents wars and the like. But he can’t get anything done without destroying other details of history, much like a bull in a china shop. He’s often cleaning up after Helen’s messes, too.

But at least she’s not their assassin. That dubious honor goes to double agent Marisol Castillo.

Mirror Universe

Portrait of a Character – Helen Walker

There are no real impediments to Helen existing in the Mirror Universe, but deeper future characters have several more chances to not have a perfect duplicate on the other side of the proverbial pond.

I think she’d be more careful and sensitive. I write MU women as often being beholden to, and subservient to, men. In earlier times, that would make a Mirror Universe woman slavelike. But Helen belongs to a time period where it might snag her a better husband instead. She could potentially have a better future than a lot of other MU women.

Quote

“If they like time travel so much, I bet we could work a bit together. They do their conquering – whatever they like, actually. All we need to do is keep a step ahead, and go back, either to make changes for our own purposes or, if necessary, to undo whatever they may damage. And not only will the Temporal Integrity Commission have their hands full, but so will Section 31, and the Federation, and anyone else who might have any issues with all that we are attempting to accomplish.”

Upshot

Portrait of a Character – Helen Walker

When I created the character, I had no idea that there really had been a Helen Walker who was an actress.

At the end of the series, Helen is carted off to jail. I’m not sure how to bring her back, except in prequels or flashbacks.

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Review – Where the Wind Comes Sweepin’ Down the Plain

Where the Wind Comes Sweepin’ Down the Plain

Where is it that the wind comes sweepin’ down the plain? Why, it’s Oklahoma, of course. Yet if stories about terrorism trigger you, you might want to back out now.

Background

To continue Richard Daniels and the Temporal Integrity Commission’s investigations in time, I decided the Perfections would prevent a truly horrific act, and then the commission would have to, sadly, put it back.

Barking Up the Muse Tree | jespah | Janet Gershen-Siegel | Where the Wind Comes Sweepin' Down the Plain
Where the Wind Comes Sweepin’ Down the Plain

9/11 was (and still is) too close in time, and felt wrong. But this event isn’t too much better, and I can understand if a reader finds it a distasteful topic for Star Trek fanfiction, still.

For anyone who does not know the musical, the title of the piece refers to Oklahoma! And so the story line can only be about one thing.

A lot of writers, when tackling a subject like this, focus on the Kennedy assassination. But I wanted something more contemporary. And this particular terrorist act is even worse, given the high number of lost innocents.

This is the last of the stories in the Complications subsection of the HG Wells timeline (the first part is Repairs; the last part is Unravelings).

Plot

Review – Where the Wind Comes Sweepin’ Down the Plain

As Rick recovers from meeting Milena (and falling for her), the Perfectionists, an opposing faction, pull off their most audacious act so far. But preventing the Oklahoma City bombing means that a number of people will live who aren’t supposed to. And this includes several preschoolers. Hence the timeline becomes horribly damaged.

At the same time, in an effort to distract musician time traveler HD Avery, the  Perfectionists avert a 1977 plane crash that killed half of the rock group Lynyrd Skynyrd.

And as a third piece of the temporal shenanigans puzzle, the  Perfections prevent the 1983 assassination of Benigno Aquino.

Temporal Issues

So as a result of these changes, the NX-01‘s pilot is not Travis Mayweather; it’s Shelby Pike. She works as the ship’s Botanist in the Prime Timeline. In this alternate, she and Tripp Tucker have a relationship, and Otra D’Angelo sees Pike pregnant with Tucker’s child.

Review – Where the Wind Comes Sweepin’ Down the Plain

Yet another temporal alteration concerns Wesley Crusher‘s death from a plague. So this causes the destruction of the Enterprise-D by a Borg cube because Jean-Luc Picard cannot stop playing a game and Robin Lefler cannot save the crew by herself.

Hence due to the ever-present Borg threat, the Federation obtains rather expensive help from Dawitan, Otra’s home world. The Federation pays tribute every year. However, the masses are kept appeased with generous daily rations of fortified wine.

Review – Where the Wind Comes Sweepin’ Down the Plain

But protesters, including Anthony Parker, break into the USS Saint Eligius in order to destroy the wine casks (they’re behaving a lot like real-life temperance advocate Carrie Nation).

However, in the largest of the crates they smash open, they find an emaciated Otra. She has been kept imprisoned by the Perfectionists. Upon the eventual restoration of the timeline, Otra ends up back prison but retains a phaser that Anthony has given her.

The end of the story also prods  a horribly distraught Tom Grant to confess his love to Eleanor Daniels.

Music

Story Postings

Rating

The story is Rated T.

Upshot

I liked putting this one together, as it ended up quite a puzzle. Daniel Beauchaine‘s actions have to be accounted for. In addition, I had to research and write dialogue for Timothy McVeigh and Terry Nichols. As a piece of the Complications subsection of these stories, the book lives up to the idea of being complicated all right. But it sometimes seems overly so.

Hence numerous strands, from the three temporal alterations, to all of the consequences, need correction. But it ends up a lot for a reader to follow, and I admit I probably rushed through this one too much.


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