A temporal fix, and Dana 'Mack' MacKenzie and her barnstorming sports team were restored to the original timeline by the employees of the Temporal Integrity Commission, in the 32nd century.
But there was a Temporal Cold War raging, and the faction responsible could just as easily do it again. Agent Rick Daniels had to return to fix that. He also had to keep an imperfectly designed and poorly understood piece of technology – the source of the original temporal disruption – from being fired again, by a rogue Section 31 operative.
In the meantime, Mack and her team would go to Daranaea, where games would be played, and their Communications Officer was set to be wed. Mack and her second cousin, Martin Madden of the USS Enterprise-E, would attend together. They were kept apart by an unjust and poorly drafted incest law. Would they deny their feelings? Or would they fight the law?
Star Trek the Next Generation
A Star Trek Fan Fiction By
J. R. Gershen-Siegel
This is a fan written work
The copyrights & trademarks of Star Trek are owned by
Paramount Pictures, CBS Corporation and their licensee, Pocket Books. Any attempt to sell or rent this book should be reported to the copyright owners for their action
Chapter 1 – Essentials
When sports teams are tied, at the end of regulation play, many sports allow for at least one overtime period. The participants get a chance to break the tie and have one team or the other establish its superiority. This is the essence of overtime.
But the other meaning is about working past one's allotted hours. Often, pay is increased, although the United Federation of Planets didn't officially have money on September 23rd of 2379. Still, some small pockets of space and some systems did. But that is immaterial – back to the teams.
It was more than two teams – factions, really – that were vying for supremacy. But their battle wasn't over points or yards or goals. Instead, their focus was on time.
A Temporal Cold War was raging, and the battlefield was time itself, all the way from their present time, in the 31st century, to 2379 and even earlier, and everything in between. Technology did have its limitations, but the factions pushed the temporal envelope anyway.
Or they would have their attention diverted by something of interest in time, or they would seek an advantage by assuring that someone or other who stood in their way could never be born.
Fortunately for the Temporal Integrity Commission – the agency tasked with mopping up the many temporal spills and side effects of the conflict – their operatives were protected by a temporal field. Their ancestors back to the proverbial Adam and Eve could be wiped from existence, but the agents themselves would remain intact, and able to pitch in and restore their own ancestries.
Richard Daniels, an agent of the Temporal Integrity Commission, had originally been sent to 2380 to prevent and divert a temporal shockwave that had made the prime, correct timeline jump its tracks. His boss, Admiral Carmen Calavicci, had come along to help, as there were issues in the Mirror Universe. She and Rick agreed that 2380 had been caused by a rather specific issue in 2379.
It was, in part, just an accident. A certain piece of equipment, unknown and unfinished, and improperly calibrated, had been engaged. It was a modified pulse cannon, a kind of combination dark matter collector and drive, and a pulse shot generator. Combined, these elements could allow anyone to travel in time, or even a ship to do so. But the article wasn't properly calibrated and so instead it had wrought some temporal havoc.
A Temporal Cold War faction run by a man known only as 'Future Guy' had sat up and taken notice at this firing of a pulse shot, so many years before the technology was truly perfected. And that was when the fun had really started.
But back to 2379. A woman named Misty Dana MacKenzie – 'Mack' to most – owned an odd Gorn ship and used it to ferry around her barnstorming sports team, The Black Sheep. The Sheep were a ragtag group, fitting in perfectly with the ship, which was cylindrical, and resembled a sandwich cookie. Mack herself had dubbed it the Cookie, and it and her team fit in with her – she had been a baseball player, and was also an ex-convict, only recently exonerated. Formality was not in her nature, and any semblance of protocols had been left behind long ago, in Canamar Prison.
Her team included members of several species, including a graceful Calafan woman named Yi'imspi. Yi'imspi – who superficially looked human, except for her silver extremities and very, very short hair – was lovely enough to have done modeling on Tellar. But she was also canny enough to have studied several languages. In the age of universal translators, there were only two reasons why anyone would bother to study a foreign tongue. One was if you were going into Communications. After all, technology could still fail at times. The other reason was espionage. Yi'imspi wasn't in Communications.
Mack didn't know this when she had hired Yi'imspi. It was only in an alternate timeline that anyone had learned this. Rick, protected by the temporal field, was able to both remember events and consult records from alternate lines. But Mack and the others could not.
All Mack knew was that her ship had any number of strange and wonderful – and often unfinished – inventions. She didn't know about pulse shots, but she did know about an ionization diffuser, which was a kind of proto-cloaking device. Barely legal in Federation space, the ionization diffuser was meant to be a secret. Yet someone had recently tampered with it. That part was unsettling enough.
Mack also knew that she was truly, madly, deeply in love with her second cousin. He – Martin Douglas Madden – was the First Officer on the Enterprise-E. He felt the same way about her. But there was a very real and very unfair incest law standing in their way, which forbade second and first cousin marriages. Ruining her reputation wasn't much of an issue for Mack, being an ex-con. Even proven innocent, her reputation still wasn't the best. An accusation of incest would be annoying, and would possibly eat into her profits, but it would, overall, probably not harm her any worse than she was already harmed by life and her own circumstances. Not so for Marty.
Marty had – with Mack unavailable to him, and in prison, to boot – thrown himself into two pursuits over the years. These were trying to free her and getting ahead. It took nineteen years for her appeals to finally bear fruit. In the meantime, he had become perhaps the tenth or so most powerful regular spacefarer in the Federation, behind his superior officer, Captain Jean-Luc Picard and some, but not all, of the other captains in the fleet. Unable to have Mack – only he called her Mystic – the possibility of making captain before he turned sixty was an attractive one.
Mack and Marty's lives had been upended even before the unexpected temporal shenanigans. The ionization diffuser had, every time it had been run, attracted other attentions. The Mirror Universe and Section 31 were both fascinated, and they had both sent Yi'imspi to investigate. Neither of these two groups knew that the operative was being shared. Other interested parties were Temporal Cold War factions and a small remaining pocket of Augments, who made their home in a tiny corner of the old Delphic Expanse.
Regular bursts of radiation cycled through various locations where temporal activity had occurred. These energy fluctuations cycled through a variety of radiation bands. The radiation band, or hydrogen line, was a perfectly reliable means of determining which universe someone or something belonged to. Ours is 21 centimeters; the Mirror is 20. Other universes differ accordingly and not necessarily by whole centimeter units. The differences might even relate to temporal differences.
Marty and Mack's lives were thrust into the spotlight when they were tested, and found to be sporting radiation bands of less than 21 centimeters. A total of thirteen such persons were found, and they could all trace their lineage back to one Douglas Jay Hayes Beckett, a man from the Mirror Universe who had been brought over in 2157 by the Calafans, Yi'imspi's own species.
Their relatives included shipmates Geordi LaForge and Michael Daniels. Another relation was the recent transfer from the USS Talos – Marty's old ship – Tamsin Jennifer Porter. She'd had her eye on Marty, and at times would threaten him with exposure for his near-incestuous ways. She was that jealous of Mack.
But Mack was on the Cookie, and it was two days before the pulse shot was to be fired, although she didn't know that. All she knew was that she didn't want her things tampered with, and so she was having her Chief Engineer, Wesley Crusher, and her Communications Officer, a fluffy white Daranaean named Crita, install hidden surveillance cameras. Mack was bound and determined to catch anyone tampering with the more secret and exotic technology on the Cookie.
The ship was tricked out for a sports team. Her fifty athletes had recently come off an upset victory on Tellar, where they had beaten the Tellar planetary team at a traditional sport called Kreesta. Kreesta was a kind of cross between table tennis and competitive eating, and was about as messy as anything could get.
Mack had come out of the experience with a newfound determination to keep the Cookie's more interesting technology secure, as there was irrefutable proof of tampering with the ionization diffuser.
She suspected – rightfully, so it turned out – that her inner circle remained trustworthy. They may have had their own issues, both small and large, but they weren't out to get her.
Her inner circle – other than Marty, who was her business partner and co-owner of the team – consisted of Chief Engineer Wesley Crusher, the son of the Enterprise-E's ship's doctor. Wes was eager and smart and in love with a member of the Starfleet Academy band, French horn player Lakeisha Warren. Mack called him the Boy Wonder.
Her pilot was an Orion-Betazoid hybrid named Daniya. The green-skinned, dark-eyed woman could both sense emotions and manipulate them at will. This had been rather useful when Mack was purchasing the Cookie. Along with Wes, Daniya also served as the First Officer.
The ship's physician was an Ikaaran named Majira. Like all of her people, Majira was an empathic healer for injuries, diseases, and syndromes that could be mimicked in her own body. For anything where she couldn't perform the mimicry trick, such as when a Jem'Hadar team member had been injured, Majira performed surgery or prescribed medications, much like any other doctor.
Rounding out the senior staff was the Daranaean Communications Officer, an artist named Crita. Like all third caste Daranaean women, Crita was somewhat meek and mild. The fact that she had been single for so long – rather scandalously after her eighteenth birthday – and that she was working for a living, made her fairly unique. She was about ready to marry, and would be the third wife of a soldier named Senjarus. But first the fluffy sentient marsupial canid wanted to finish a painted mural of the Grand Canyon.
Into this scene of perhaps too much trust and not enough discipline, Yi'imspi had managed to fairly readily infiltrate. She knew that Mack wanted to trust her. Mack wanted to trust everyone.
But Yi'imspi was untrustworthy.