ROTF: Patterns of Interference Annotations

This document explains the continuity references, allusions, in-jokes, and scientific concepts contained in Star Trek: Enterprise — Rise of the Federation: Patterns of Interference (ROTF:POI).   I assume that the reader is familiar with the basic characters and background of the Trek universe.  Readers seeking further information on references to past Trek episodes or movies are advised to consult the Memory Alpha Star Trek wiki.  Information about Star Trek novels can be found at the Memory Beta wiki.

ROTF advances the post-series Enterprise continuity whose previous installments include the novels The Good That Men Do and Kobayashi Maru by Andy Mangels & Michael A. Martin and The Romulan War: Beneath the Raptor’s Wing and The Romulan War: To Brave the Storm by Martin. However, it begins a new storyline and stands largely on its own. POI continues the arcs begun in ROTF Book 1, A Choice of Futures (ACOF), Book 2, Tower of Babel (ToB), Book 3, Uncertain Logic (UL), and Book 4, Live by the Code (LBTC).

Be aware that this document contains spoilers for the whole of POI and for numerous episodes, films, and novels from all Trek series, particularly Enterprise, as well as limited spoilers for the novel Section 31: Control by David Mack.  I would strongly recommend not reading it until one has completed the novel, since many of the notes contain spoilers for things not revealed until later scenes or chapters.

Episode and book titles are ENT unless otherwise indicated.  Episode and short-story titles are in quotes, while film and book titles are italicized.


ENT — Enterprise TOS — The Original Series TAS — The Animated Series
TNG — Next Generation DS9 — Deep Space Nine VGR – Voyager
TGTMD – The Good That Men Do KM – Kobayashi Maru TTN — Titan
TRW – The Romulan War (duology) BTRW – Beneath the Raptor’s Wing (TRW Bk. 1) TBTS – To Brave the Storm (TRW Bk. 2)
STSC – Star Trek Star Charts WTC – Watching the Clock  

Chapter Annotations

Title The title is somewhat inspired by TOS: “Patterns of Force,” which I intended just to evoke the sound, though I suppose there’s a similarity in the theme of resistance against a fascist state. It’s also a physics pun on interference patterns in waves, the way two interacting sets of waves will amplify or cancel each other at different points—which I suppose could be considered symbolic of the way different characters’ plans and goals work to enhance or impede each other over the course of the book. Hey, the title’s more meaningful than I thought!
Cover Doug Drexler and I went through kind of a back-and-forth on this one. On reading the outline, he was struck by the possibilities of a “James Bond” scene of Trip Tucker infiltrating the spaceship factory. His initial draft featured Tucker and the spaceplane-style ship, but with a different background. The depiction of the spaceplane in the cover draft influenced how I described the vessels in the manuscript. I offered some notes on how the draft cover might be slightly tweaked to be a bit more book-accurate, and instead, Doug went and did a completely new background that’s apparently based on my description of the factory in the text. The image wrapping around the spine and back cover of the book is a portion of the original draft cover, so it didn’t go to waste.
3 Note that the prologue begins 20 days before the epilogue of the previous book. Once I decided to begin this book with the Pioneer crew down for debriefing and refits, it pretty much required starting earlier than I’d thought I would. Fortunately I was able to work around the established timeline and keep things consistent.
  We saw the Enterprise crew’s return from the Xindi mission (after a time-travel detour) in “Home.” To Brave the Storm showed the Battle of Cheron but not the homecoming afterward.
5 Essex’s first visit to Sauria was seen in A Choice of Futures.
7 S’harien was established in Diane Duane’s My Enemy, My Ally as a great pre-Reformation Vulcan swordsmith who was converted to peace by Surak and destroyed almost all his swords, with Surak imploring him to preserve the last few as works of art. Duane’s works are from an earlier era of Trek novel continuity, but elements of her version of Vulcan history have been referenced in the current novel continuity on occasion.
14 Both the White Illumination festival and the Christmas Market are real Sapporo customs that I learned about while researching the city, dating from 1981 and 2002 respectively. This site has a few photos, though I can no longer find the specific sites I used for reference at the time.
  The date I used for the scene is the same day I wrote it, December 18, and the description of the weather was based on the weather outside my apartment at that very moment. I could get away with this because Cincinnati and Sapporo are in pretty much the same kind of climate region (humid continental, Dfa in the Köppen climate classification scheme). Of course, this presumes that global warming doesn’t change Earth’s climate over the next couple of centuries, but Trek has long established that the future Earth’s climate is the same as the current one’s. See A Choice of Futures notes, p. 89.
17 An onsen is a traditional Japanese hotspring bath; many Japanese hotels have artificial versions, including several in the immediate vicinity of Odori Park, according to online booking sites. A konyoku bath is open to both sexes, unlike the usual gender-segregated kind. A furo is the more generic name for a Japanese bath. In these baths, one washes oneself elsewhere before getting into the communal bath, for reasons of hygiene.
18 Hoshi’s biography screen in “In a Mirror, Darkly Part 2” says that she “was the second child in a family of three.” I decided to call her younger sister Mitsuki because it can mean “full moon” or “moonlight,” pairing well with Hoshi, meaning “star.”
Chapter 1
21 The Intrepid in ENT was a CGI model basically kitbashed from pieces of the NX-class model, and was not needed to be seen clearly or in detail, so it has a lot of odd design features, like the nacelles resting directly atop the saucer and, yes, portholes placed right under the nacelle caps. (It also doesn’t seem to have any shuttlebays, but I gloss over that in the books.)
23 It may be a little contrived for Tom Paris’s ancestor to love the same Captain Proton serials he did, but I guess such things can be passed down within families. The interest in antiques is shared too, but Tom preferred antique cars; I made it toys and games for Caroline so it wouldn’t be too similar.
  Argonne, James, and Caroline were all among the Starfleet-serving Paris ancestors mentioned by Jeri Taylor in VGR: Mosaic, along with Bailey and Mackenzie. The specifics of their careers are my own invention.
24 As always, I’m indebted for engineering details to The Enterprise Project at
25 The one-piece gray uniforms referenced here are meant to be the 2160s Starfleet uniforms introduced in Star Trek Beyond. I’m attempting to reconcile the Federation Starfleet uniforms I designed for ROTF, which foreshadowed elements of 23rd-century uniforms and were in use by late 2162, with Beyond’s U.S.S. Franklin uniforms, which are more of a variation on the Earth Starfleet jumpsuits from ENT and were in use as of 2164 (sometime during ROTF: Tower of Babel). This requires them both to be in use at the same time, not unlike the TNG-style 2-piece and DS9-style jumpsuit. I presume now that my original uniform design is only approximate and that some of its features would actually align more closely with the details of the Franklin uniforms.
31ff The chess game in this scene (and some of the dialogue about it) is based on the one discussed on my blog on September 16, 2012. I tried to be vague about the exact moves, partly because the real game was based largely on luck rather than skill, and partly because I could swear I’ve based a chess scene on that specific game once before, though I can’t for the life of me remember where.
35ff I previously alluded to the XCV-330 Enterprise prototype in DTI: Watching the Clock. I figured this scene was an opportunity to finally show it “onscreen,” and also continue my desperate efforts to find some way to include ships named Enterprise in these novels so as to justify the banner title.
36 “Coleopteric” is the adjective used in Michael Okuda’s text description of the ringship in the centerfold of the Ships of the Line 2011 calendar which debuted Mark Rademaker’s digital recreation of the vessel. Literally meaning “sheath-winged” (and also used as the taxonomic name for the order of beetles, Coleoptera), it originally referred to a theoretical aircraft design with an annular (cylindrical) wing structure, usually around a ducted fan for propulsion.
  The term “enviropod” for the forward section of the ringship comes from the original Matt Jefferies concept art.
41 Trip is righter than he knows about the safety of using the ringship’s computers. My timeline from WTC puts the ship’s last flight in 2129, and David Mack’s Section 31: Control establishes that the artificial intelligence ultimately behind Section 31 didn’t go online until 2141.
43 Admiral Parvati Rao is a character from Control. Dave left her fate unresolved in that novel, so I took the opportunity to tie off that loose end.
44 Tinh Hoc Phuong was Trip’s first handler in The Good That Men Do, set in early 2155. He did indeed say he’d been recruited three years earlier, so the details fit rather well with Control.
  Of course, a lot of the conclusions that Reed, Tucker, and T’Pol draw about S31’s origins are incorrect. According to Control, the actual genesis of Section 31 occurred in October 2150, not long before the launch of Enterprise. Reed’s work for Harris was years before then, which seems to create a continuity error. But it works if Reed and other observers mistakenly believe that S31 is a direct continuation of Harris’s earlier conspiracy. The truth is probably somewhere in the middle—the real mastermind behind S31 recognized that Harris’s prior work was along the same lines, so recruiting him and his cronies to resume that work would save time in getting S31 up and running.
45 T’Pol’s discussion of conspiracy math may seem a bit esoteric, but it was important to me to include it. I’m not fond of stories about vast, overarching conspiracies that have gone undiscovered for generations, because it’s so silly—the larger a conspiracy, the more inevitable its exposure. This has always annoyed me about the idea of Section 31, this enduring conspiracy that’s somehow gone undiscovered for more than two centuries. (See p. 339 note below.)
47-8 Section 31’s uncanny abilities with digital information are explained in Control.
48 Gannet Brooks was introduced in “Terra Prime” and “Demons,” but her hawkish political views were established in Beneath the Raptor’s Wing.
Chapter 2
55 The Xyrillians joining with the Vissians’ technology embargo to the Federation (which was established in TRW) helps explain why the UFP didn’t acquire their holographic technology as seen in “Unexpected,” although I already established something along those lines back in ACOF. The Lorillians (first seen in “Broken Bow”) seemed like they should’ve been a good candidate for membership, given their ties to the Vulcans and Rigelians as established in previous books, but The Lost Era: Serpents Among the Ruins by David R. George III contains a mention of an early 24th-century Klingon ambassador having negotiated with the Lorillians at some point in his career, implying that they remained separate from the Federation. The Ithenites, on the other hand, are meant to be the diminutive bronze-skinned species seen as ambassadors in TOS: “Journey to Babel,” so they were bound to become UFP members at some point.
  As of this point, the first ten Federation members in order of joining are:

  • United Earth: 2161
  • Confederacy of Vulcan: 2161
  • Andorian Empire: 2161
  • United Planets of Tellar: 2161
  • Alpha Centauri Concordium of Planets: 2161
  • Confederated Martian Colonies: 2162
  • United Rigel Worlds and Colonies: 2164
  • Vega IX: 2164
  • Arken II: 2165
  • Ithen: 2165
58ff This book was written in the winter of 2016-17. The United States presidential campaign the previous year gave me ample opportunity to observe the psychology of a narcissistic, authoritarian politician with fascist leanings, and it informed my writing of Maltuvis herein.
66 Blue-skinned Orion males were seen in TAS: “The Pirates of Orion.” Perhaps the makers of that episode were thinking of Thelev from TOS: “Journey to Babel,” an Orion disguised as an Andorian, and concluded that Orion males were blue (although we did see a green Orion female in TAS: “Time Trap,” namely Devna). In any case, if both types exist, it makes sense that the blue race would be used to impersonate Andorians.
Chapter 3
74 Ultritium was frequently referenced on TNG and DS9 as a high-powered chemical explosive, although the name suggests it was meant to invoke tritium, an isotope of hydrogen that can be used in nuclear weapons. It seemed a good candidate for a type of bomb that would be devastating but not quite on the level of a nuke.
75-6 Articles of the Federation by Keith R.A. DeCandido established that the Palais de la Concorde, the residence of the Federation President and site of the Federation Council, was built during the administration of Haroun al-Rashid, who was elected in Tower of Babel.
81 The promotion ritual depicted here is a hybrid of promotions we’ve seen onscreen (Sisko in DS9: “The Adversary” and Tuvok in VGR: “Revulsion”) and the language used in US military promotions (since Starfleet is generally portrayed as following US military precedent). The Starfleet oath uttered by Paris is a hybrid of two oaths that I found online at fan sites, one of which is simply the US oath with a few words changed. The other is of unknown origin, but to me it seems more appropriate for Starfleet (and less derivative). So I chose to go with a hybrid of the two.
83 As mentioned in the acknowledgments of LBTC, the Ceres class was designed by Alan Baker for the Advanced Starship Design Bureau’s Journal of Applied Treknology at The version herein probably has warp nacelles more consistent with those seen in ENT, as well as a different design and construction history and different vessel names.
Chapter 4
  No notes.
Chapter 5
111 GJ 1045 is a real star, a main-sequence M4 red dwarf located about 68.8 light years from Earth.
112ff The question of whether M-dwarf planets would be habitable is a burning issue for exoplanetary studies, because M dwarfs vastly outnumber all other types of star. If they can support life, then most life in the galaxy would be on such planets. But there are a lot of factors arguing against their habitability. I’ve favored a more conservative take on their habitability herein because Star Trek generally presumes that habitable worlds are around Sunlike stars (as it dates from an era when the scientific consensus was that red dwarfs would be unlikely to support habitable planets). It also helps make the discovery of Birnam (as the planet will be named later) more of a big deal for the characters here—and perhaps explains why the Trek universe doesn’t have more mobile plant creatures.
  While we’re on the subject: I was initially concerned that introducing ambulatory plants in the 22nd century would conflict with the discovery of the Phylosians in TAS: “The Infinite Vulcan” more than a century later. In reviewing that episode, though, I determined that the ambulatory plants of Phylos were never said to be an unprecedented discovery; if anything, the landing party seemed rather blasé about it, as though they’d met or heard of such life forms before. Come to think of it, Sulu’s pet plant Gertrude (aka Beauregard) in TOS: “The Man Trap” was quite mobile and animal-like. Perhaps it even came from Birnam?
117 Alec is referring to a famous prophecy from Act IV-V of Macbeth, that Macbeth would not be vanquished until Birnam Wood came to Dunsinane, a Scottish hill some 14 miles away, believed to be the site of a historical battle between Macbeth and Malcolm Canmore. The prophecy came true in the play when Malcolm’s forces camouflaged themselves with vegetation from Birnam Wood to cloak their approach to the hill.
Chapter 6
127 An antimatter-spiked microfusion drive would use small antimatter annihilations to create enough heat and pressure to induce a fusion reaction, a bit like spark plugs igniting gasoline vapor in a car engine. The principle can be read about at
131-2 I initially decided to make Morgan Kelly transsexual simply because I couldn’t make up my mind whether I wanted the character (who was named but not depicted in TNG: “Power Play”) to be male or female, and thus decided to split the difference. But when it came to writing this book and featuring the Essex crew more heavily, I realized I couldn’t just leave it as a throwaway reference. I tried to make her description of her transition authentic based on what I’ve read and heard about trans people’s experiences over the years, and I can only hope I did it justice. At the time I wrote it, I didn’t realize that a portrayal of a trans person in the military would become rather more topical by the time the book came out.
  Morgan’s big sister Janelle is supposed to be the Crewman J. Kelly who appeared as part of Enterprise’s crew in “Vox Sola.” My decision to make the two Kellys siblings was the reason for my choice of Morgan’s ethnicity, although this is my first opportunity to bring it up.
133 The most famous bolide explosion in recent memory was the Chelyabinsk meteor of 2013, which was one of the largest such events ever recorded. Yet smaller bolide explosions do happen pretty much daily, and most go unobserved, because something like 99% of the surface of the Earth (including the water) is not permanently inhabited. We occupy a much smaller portion of the planet than we tend to assume.
134-5 The description of the Vasakleyro canyon’s “toothed” walls is based on a real place that I saw on a documentary some 20 or so years ago and found utterly striking. At the time, I used it as the basis for an alien landscape in a story I never sold. When I decided to reuse it here, I couldn’t remember where I’d seen it originally and thus had to base my descriptions solely on that earlier story. Since then, I’ve deduced that my inspiration was probably the Pongo de Mainique in Peru, as featured in episode 8 of the BBC’s Full Circle with Michael Palin, as seen from roughly 4:00 to 5:10 in this clip. That episode would’ve aired in the US less than a month before I began to write the story in question. As you can see in the video, the cliffs aren’t quite as I described them in the book, notably in that they have no shoreline between the cliff face and the river.
142 The Stameris slave market was mentioned in “Acquisition,” and the unnamed pirates that Tucker recalls are the race we will later know as the Ferengi. Star Trek Star Charts chose to identify Stameris with Lambda Serpentis, which just happens to be 10 light years from Psi Serpentis, the system STSC identifies with Sauria. This happenstance served my purposes quite well.
143 The Eska and their unethical hunting practices were seen in “Rogue Planet.”
145 Since Devna spent TAS: “The Time Trap” wearing a skimpy bikini, despite having lived free from enslavement for over a century, it stands to reason that she prefers wearing very little, given the choice.
Chapter 7
150 The opening exchange in this chapter is my self-indulgent response to an old commercial that always annoyed the hell out of me. I think it was for Nestle’s Quik or something, and it involved cartoon children who were visiting some alien planet and admiring the local giant sunflowers, which turned into anthropomorphic flower monsters and attacked, prompting the kids to yell “The flowers are alive!” Every time I saw that commercial, I wanted to yell, “Of course the flowers are alive, you idiots!”
  Both dryads and kodama are spirits that inhabit trees, rather than being actual mobile trees.
151 I resisted the most obvious pun answer to “How would trees talk?”: They bark. That one seemed a bit too juvenile.
156 Shran is, unfortunately, absolutely correct; the rigid, extremist view of the Prime Directive he describes is exactly the one depicted in TNG episodes like “Pen Pals” and the execrable “Homeward.” The model Archer’s arguing for is more like the one in place in TOS, when it was understood that it was about respecting other cultures’ self-determination rather than condescending to their supposed inability to handle advanced knowledge, which is what it had degenerated into by the 24th century. This scene is a microcosm of my thinking on the Prime Directive and the debates I’ve been having about it online for many years.
160 According to Memory Alpha, Elevia was Devna’s name in the first draft script of “The Time Trap.”
163 As confirmed later in the book, “Victor Lund” is a Casablanca nod, on Tucker’s part as well as my own. In the film, Victor Laszlo (Paul Henried) and Ilsa Lund (Ingrid Bergman) were freedom fighters against the Nazis.
Chapter 8
180 Taylor Paris is, of course, named after Jeri Taylor, author of VGR: Mosaic and thus the creator of Caroline Paris.
  Caroline’s prediction about more traditional gender values resurging in future generations is meant as a possible rationalization for the sexism seen in TOS. Although I expect Star Trek: Discovery to portray a version of the TOS era without 1960s sexism, so it follows that such attitudes might only recur in certain segments of the population and not others.
181 Meanwhile, Caroline’s point about the risk of a seemingly enlightened society backsliding into old prejudices is relevant to the here and now.
184 Here’s a crude illustration of a dryad, modified from the one I did quite a few years ago based on my original version of the story:

185 Farid is paraphrasing the refrain of the 1966 Nancy Sinatra song “These Boots Are Made for Walkin’,” written by Lee Hazlewood.
196ff It was important to me that the dialogue about the techniques of fighting oppression came from Kelly, a trans woman of color, as well as other people of color like Mullen and Ruiz, rather than having it come from a white, hetero/cis character like Trip. Of course, humans in the 22nd century see each other as equal and united, but as Trip points out, the era of discrimination and division was not that far in their past—something that has sadly become even more overt in the months since I wrote this book. They all understand that the credit for the equality they take for granted comes from the courage and sacrifice of the oppressed who fought to win it, not the indulgence of those who were born with privilege.
Chapter 9
202ff The restaurant scene was the last one I wrote, after the first draft came out a little short. I’d only managed to give Kivei Tizahr one scene in that draft, and I felt she needed more fleshing out. It also helped me add a couple of new angles to the non-interference debate.
213 Maya’s reference to Starfleet’s “cushy government paychecks” is not anachronistic. TOS did establish on a few occasions that Starfleet officers were paid. Kirk told Chekov in “Who Mourns for Adonais” and Scotty in “The Doomsday Machine” that “you’ve earned your pay for the week,” and in “The Apple” he asked Spock how much money Starfleet had invested in him, which Spock was naturally able to recite precisely (122,200-some units, probably the credits established as currency in “Catspaw,” “Mirror, Mirror,” “The Trouble With Tribbles,” and TAS: “Mudd’s Passion”). The moneyless Federation economy wasn’t established until the 24th-century shows. Kirk did say in The Voyage Home that they didn’t use money in his era, but he was probably referring to physical currency as opposed to an electronic credit system.
  Hoshi is referencing an explanation for the ease of cross-humanoid translation that I first established way back in SCE: Aftermath, my debut work of Trek fiction. Most of the rest of the debate over dryad sentience is from the original unsold short story.
225-6 I wish I’d been able to do more with the idea of Tanag impersonating Tucker with the resistance. As it is, it feels like a bit of a loose end. Still, I suppose I needed it to justify them keeping Trip alive at all.
Chapter 10
232-3 Hoshi Sato’s Kyoto birthplace was established on her biography screen in “In a Mirror, Darkly, Part 2.” Her encounter with anacondas was referenced in “Fight or Flight.”
234 Hoshi’s musing about cartoon sprites from the spirit realm is a nod to the films of Hayao Miyazaki such as My Neighbor Totoro and Spirited Away. It stands to reason that those would be part of her cultural heritage as much as Casablanca is part of Tucker’s.
Chapter 11
248-9 I feel it’s a bit of a copout that I only summarized Sam and Val’s eloquent speeches about the Partnership. I didn’t really trust myself to do them justice, given the tight deadline I was working under. But maybe it’s better to focus on the emotions rather than the words.
256 Maltuvis’s philosophy of compelling obedience to obvious lies owes something to Petruchio’s efforts from Shakespeare’s The Taming of the Shrew to gain dominance over Kate by making her agree that the Sun was actually the Moon. This is now recognized as a tactic of abuse, basically the practice known as gaslighting (undermining an abuse victim’s sense of reality and sanity by convincing them to submit to a false reality). It’s also a popular tactic of political propaganda in authoritarian regimes, codified in Adolf Hitler’s doctrine of the “Big Lie,” and is disturbingly popular in right-wing political discourse in the present-day United States.
Chapter 12
258-9 My main sources on the methods used for creating carbon composites were and
262 The “cylindrical assembly chambers for warp nacelles” were inspired by Doug Drexler’s draft cover art, as seen on the spine and back cover of the novel.
263 I would guess that the casing of a photon(ic) torpedo would need to be designed to encase the magnetic bottle containing the antimatter and to be robust enough to avoid rupture and keep the magnetic field active at all costs. So I figure that would give them a different shape and a smoother, more one-piece construction than other types of torpedo, as seen in the classic Trek torpedo design introduced in The Wrath of Khan and used for photonic torpedoes in ENT.
  The quantum charge reversal system was introduced on pp. 71-2 of the Star Trek: The Next Generation Technical Manual, although there it was called a “device” (QCRD) instead. I probably went with “system” here because what’s depicted is a larger, cruder, less integrated mechanism. Or maybe I just made a mistake.
Chapter 13
283 Since Marcus Williams was recruited as a Section 31 asset during the Earth-Romulan War, that means he wasn’t yet compromised at the time of his onscreen appearances as Admiral Forrest’s aide in ENT. I established in ACOF that Williams had worked for Admiral Gardner as well.
284 Archer’s skepticism of Williams’s acting ability is not intended as a reflection on his portrayer, Jim Fitzpatrick.
286 When Ruiz mentions Q, he is of course referring to the gadget man from the James Bond franchise, not the nigh-omnipotent superbeing from the Trek franchise. (Which is why Trip was about to say “I’m my own Q” before he was interrupted.) The Federation will not learn of the existence of those Q for another 198 years.
289 Nuclear fusion is extremely hard to trigger, which is why we still don’t have practical fusion power after more than 60 years of trying. Hydrogen fusion bombs are, in fact, triggered by smaller fission bombs, the only way to compress and heat the reactants enough to make them fuse (as with the antimatter-spiked fusion process described in the p. 127 note above). So any work of fiction you’ve ever seen depicting a nuclear reactor blowing up or being turned into a bomb (e.g. The Dark Knight Rises) is bogus. A fission reactor would at worst melt down or have a steam explosion releasing radioactive material into the environment. A fusion reactor that malfunctioned would probably just stop working, since fusion is so damn hard to achieve.
Chapter 14
300 The idea of collecting antimatter from planetary radiation belts was proposed by James Bickford of the Draper Laboratory in Cambridge, MA. It’s been discussed numerous times on the Centauri Dreams blog, including the post “Antimatter Source Near the Earth“ from August 10, 2011 (including links to posts exploring the topic in more depth).
Chapter 15
308 Farid is paraphrasing the opening and closing lines of the song “I Talk to the Trees” from the 1951 Broadway musical Paint Your Wagon, music by Frederick Loewe and lyrics by Alan J. Lerner.
310 For my own private amusement, Farid’s last two paragraphs in the scene incorporate the titles of both my earlier versions of the dryad story, “Trees Are People Too” (for the original) and The Sun Never Sets (for the abortive Corps of Engineers proposal).
311ff Readers of Section 31: Control will recognize that Admiral Rao’s death was probably not self-inflicted, and will also understand how it’s connected to the basis for her “uncannily accurate insight.” Ditto for the selectivity of the missing data mentioned on p. 313.
312 Keeping the name “Section 31” out of the press was obviously necessary to explain how the organization of that name is still a secret in the 23rd and 24th centuries despite the exposure of its first incarnation in the 22nd.
315ff Though I always intended to give Caroline Paris her own command (since Mullen needed to be first officer by 2167 as established in TNG: “Power Play”), I didn’t intend it to be Pioneer. But when outlining this novel, I realized that making Marcus Williams a Section 31 asset would finally give me something interesting to do with his character, at the cost of removing him from the board. And the reason I’d struggled to include Williams, I realized, is that I simply had too many characters in too many places. Moving Reed to Archer’s side and giving Pioneer to Paris lets me consolidate the cast a little and hopefully streamline the storytelling.
318-9 The Starfleet transfer of command ceremony has been seen in TNG: “Chain of Command” and DS9: “The Dogs of War.” The ceremony here is basically the same, except it involves a physical handover of command codes instead of a verbal instruction to the computer, which struck me as anachronistic for the 22nd century. I also drew a bit on the U.S. Navy’s change of command ceremony as described at
Chapter 16
332 Trip’s discussion of masters’ conditional “affection” for their slaves is influenced by the remake of the Roots miniseries that aired on The History Channel in 2016. Though the original Alex Haley novel is now understood to be heavily fictionalized, the 2016 remake was rooted (so to speak) in decades of research and improved understanding of the subject matter.
336 Once more, Section 31: Control reveals the true nature of the “higher echelon.”
339 My initial intention even before I spoke to Dave Mack about Control was that the people behind the 22nd-century incarnation of Section 31 would insert code into Starfleet computers that would remain dormant until triggered by the right keywords, as Harris describes here. I always felt the only way to justify S31’s longevity and enduring secrecy was if it were only occasionally active in times of great crisis and otherwise laid dormant, or if it were several separate conspiracies just using the same name, none of them very large or more active than absolutely necessary. The keyword idea allowed it to be both—several independently arising conspiracies that all descended from a common origin.


What Dave came up with in Control was rather more involved than what I had in mind, but it actually meshed well with my plans. He’d independently decided that S31 would need to go dormant periodically.

340 Flint the immortal was shown in TOS: “Requiem for Methuselah” to have various advanced technologies, including sophisticated robotics and, implausibly, the means to shrink the Enterprise to tabletop size and place its crew in stasis. It stood to reason he would have other unusual technologies at his disposal, though he no longer has the long-range transporter after its burnout here.


As for the possibility of long-range transporters in general, we’ve seen numerous examples of interstellar transporters in Trek history. In TOS, the Metrons in “Arena,” the Providers in “The Gamesters of Triskelion,” the Aegis in “Assignment: Earth,” and the Kalandans in “That Which Survives” all had them; DaiMon Bok had a long-range subspace transporter in TNG: “Bloodlines”; the Dominion used interstellar transporters in DS9: “The Jem’Hadar”; the Nyrians in VGR: “Displaced” had a “translocator” with a range of over 10 light years; and there’s transwarp beaming in the Kelvin movies, which was introduced by the Spock of 2387 and thus could be identical to or derived from any of the others. There’s also the Sikarian spatial trajector from VGR: “Prime Factors,” though that was based on spatial folding rather than the usual transporter principle. Even Emory Erickson in ENT: “Daedalus” was working on an interstellar transporter as early as 2154, though his theory turned out to be a dead end.

  The idea that some of Flint/Akharin’s claims to be famous historical figures might be exaggerated comes from “The Immortality Blues” by Marc Carlson in Star Trek: Strange New Worlds 09. Akharin is unlikely to have been Merlin, for Merlin is unlikely to have existed. One theory I’ve read (in the 1999 book King Arthur: The Truth Behind the Legend by Rodney Castleden) is that the name of a fortress associated with the historical Arthur (Myrddin, meaning “sea fort”) was confused with the similarly named advisor of a different British chieftain, resulting in the belief that Arthur had an advisor named Myrddin (which sounds scatological in French, so the French changed it to Merlin).
342 Sometime not long ago—I can’t remember when or where—I was asked about the inconsistency of Devna being nostalgic for Orion in “The Time Trap” when she was so badly treated there as a slave in my books. I’ve tried to reconcile that here, drawing on what details about Orion’s environment I could find on Memory Beta.
347-8 My initial impulse was to make the Shocking Reveal of V’Las the final scene of the book, but I felt that would be a bit too much like the cliffhanger endings of a couple of the previous books—plus it felt more important to end on the emotional moment in the closing Archer-Shran scene.
  I imagine a lot of readers are surprised that a book called Patterns of Interference and revolving around the attempt to create a non-interference policy did not end with the creation of the Prime Directive. The reason for that is that 2166 seems too early. The general consensus seems to be that the Prime Directive did not come until later in the 22nd century. My own Aftermath indicates as much, referring to the Nachri intervention of the late 22nd century predating the Directive. Peter David’s Double Helix: Double or Nothing asserts that the Resolution of Non-Interference, passed no earlier than 2175 (nearly 200 years before the novel), was a key step toward the establishment of the Prime Directive.

Besides, it makes sense to depict such a major change in policy taking years to become accepted. This is often the case in real life. It would’ve been unrealistic to show Archer succeeding in a matter of months. Besides, it felt more important, from a dramatic standpoint, to make the story about Archer and Shran’s friendship. I’m happy with how the story ends.


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