Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Interphase, Part Two

Star Trek: S.C.E. #5
Interphase, Part Two of Two by Dayton Ward & Kevin Dilmore
Published March 2001
Re-released in print form as part of the S.C.E. compilation Miracle Workers in February 2002.
Read February 3rd 2013


Previous ebook (S.C.E.): #4: Interphase, Part One of Two
Next ebook (S.C.E.): #6: Cold Fusion


Original e-book cover


Compilation of S.C.E. #5 - 8: Amazon.com | Amazon.ca | Amazon.co.uk

Spoilers ahead for Interphase, Part Two and the rest of the Corps of Engineers series!

From the back cover:
With Captain David Gold and an away team trapped on the other side of an interdimensional rift, Lieutenant Commander Kieran Duffy finds himself in command of the U.S.S. da Vinci just as the ship comes under attack by the Tholians. The enemy is armed with a new and improved version of their infamous energy web and the da Vinci is badly outnumbered, but fleeing the battle means abandoning the captain and others to an unknown fate outside this universe. There, marooned aboard a derelict vessel, Gold and his S.C.E. team struggle to keep the madness-inducing effects of the rift from driving them to suicide and murder before they can find a way to escape the realm of Interphase.
My thoughts:

The mission to recover the U.S.S. Defiant, lost for a century in spatial interphase, takes a dark turn when the daVinci is attacked by the Tholians. Responding the the discovery of a Tholian device aboard the Defiant, the Tholians' attack is designed to prevent a terrible secret from getting out. The Defiant is pulled back into the interphasic rift, and the boarding party is cut off from the rest of the crew aboard the daVinci.

Part two continues the fast-paced action and suspense of part one quite well. In this story, the crew lives up to their name as the away team must think their way out of their predicament in a manner that only engineers truly can.

The Tholians remain one of my favorite "antagonistic" races in Star Trek, and any opportunity to explore this mysterious species is welcome. They are used to good effect in Interphase, and their actions are "other-worldly" enough that they don't simply come across as another race of "bad guys." Their motivations and behavior are truly "alien," and difficult to comprehend.

Tholians: wholly alien
One thing that surprised me reading this story was the tie-in to the Vanguard series of novels. Of course, this story was written years before Vanguard came about, so the genius really is in that later series, but that is not the order in which I read them. The mysterious Tholian device being carried by the Defiant? We learn its true purpose in the course of the Vanguard novel series, and let me tell you, its purpose is pretty far from benign. The Tholians were right in their desire to not allow it to be discovered.

Hey, cool. This is my 100th Review!

Final thoughts:

As I mentioned in my review of part one, the events of this story are superseded by the "canon" version of the Defiant's ultimate fate, as seen in the Enterprise two-parter "In a Mirror, Darkly." This fact does not take away from this story whatsoever. Interphase is a fun and compelling "version" of the Defiant's story, and the unexpected tie-in to the Vanguard series was a fun thing to discover. This two-parter showcases what the Corps of Engineers series can truly be: exciting, imaginative, and a welcome addition to the world of Trek!

There is room in Star Trek for more than one ultimate fate of the Defiant!

Also by Dayton Ward and Kevin Dilmore:


My next read:

Next up is S.C.E. #6: Cold Fusion by Keith R.A. DeCandido.