That angle came from an anomaly in the story- I had some trouble figuring out why a Reman Starfleet officer would wear the traditional garb of his people (everyone else on the bridge these days is wearing the WoK uniform, which is as close as we can get to the Lost Era uniform), till I hit on the "rediscovering his 'ethnic' pride" angle of his backstory.
The discovery that Obisek was _not_ some mad terrorist, that there _was_ a future for Remans that didn't involve being slaves, was something of a revelation for Dr. Karatek. For a (very rough) comparison, imagine something like a Worf who won at the end of Sins of the Father = "Hey, my people's culture is actually pretty great after all!" Added to that the idea that it's a culture under threat, well, wearing his people's garb proudly is the least he could do!
And yeah, his losses were less personal than those of his crewmates, and thus easier to deal with.
As for what he's like personally, well, personal pride isn't something that comes easily to him - he's a bit self-effacing for a Trek doctor. Comes from growing up Reman on Earth.
(I did like the idea of having Remans settle among cold volcanoes in Iceland...)
Last edited by cosmonaut12345; 04-22-2013 at 09:23 PM.
Iceland is actually quite beautiful, in a stark way. Personally I would consider Karatek to be privileged, to have grown up there. So does he speak with an Icelandic accent? I gather that he must also be very conversant in Earth culture as well as Reman. Is he a bit more accepting of both cultures than Worf?
I hope that he wasn't treated badly. Your story implies that humans were at least more tolerant than Romulans.
Some degree of humility isn't bad. It's just that, as odd as this sounds, I got the impression he didn't realize how good his bedside manner really is. And I imagine, given that humans do probably still have some remaining prejudices, there must also be something about the way he carries himself that puts people at ease.
I also wonder, based on what I saw Viceroy Vkruk do in Nemesis, does he also have any innate calming and healing abilities that he uses in his practice to help his patients?
Dr. Karatek (no relation to the commander of the Hobus system, though he strongly suspects the man was named after him) feels some guilt for not being there for Remus, yeah. He had the easy life, the safe childhood in the Federation, where his face was a novelty rather than a mark of shame. (Most of the time, anyway)
He _could_ have been a Worf, a champion of his people with strong connections to the Federation, someone who could have gotten the Federation to care about the plight of Remans earlier in their history.
(Like I said, if you look at how things appeared in universe, Remans just sort of appeared in 2379...)
But instead he was in the middle of a space-time anomaly, and was able to do nothing for his people. Healer guilt!
re: his bedside manner. I figure he's a a kind, reassuring figure as a potential reaction against his appearance. A doctor who is heavy on the compassion and empathy with his psychic abilities as a supplement to that...
I've never read those books - as someone whose first Trek novel was the Pandora Principle, I find the idea of a wedding between Spock and Saavik to be really gross. He is her teacher and her father figure, he should not be a romantic partner even in the Vulcan sense. I've always been troubled at how her sexuality has been used in the extended universe, too - first she sleeps with David! Then she helps Spock through pon farr! Then she has his baby! (if you look at the original script for STIV, yeah, they were Going There). This young woman should be given something to do in the story other than be paired off with dudes.
But that's for another thread - watch this one for Stranded in Space/Diplomatic Orders, where the Robert April's return home after their interrupted refit at the Vega Colony continues to run into obstacles...
The presence of Orion raiders in the Vulcan Sector induced an emotional reaction in me which I am still investigating through meditation. I do not have an emotional reaction to Orions themselves - while I find their culture of exploitation and enslavement of other sentient beings ethically unsound, other cultures in the Alpha and Beta Quadrant are also organized along lines contrary to a logical respect for individual liberty and community harmony. Furthermore, I do not have an biological reaction to Orion females such as Commander Jinnifreuz. Like most spacefaring Vulcans active since the early 23rd century, I am inoculated against the histamine incompatibility between Vulcan and Orion tissues. Even if I were not so inoculated, my personal preference for intimate partners is sufficiently incompatible with Orion females that I would experience no physical unease around them.
It was logical for my mate to seek another spouse after the disappearance of the April. Our children were young enough to benefit from the effects of a stable family group, and Tovol?s career in the Diplomatic Corps rendered it impossible for him to provide parenting as a solo agent. Additionally, Tovol experienced eight pon farrs between the disappearance of the April and our reappearance in the Tau Dewa sector. It would not be logical for me to expect my mate to endure eight Times of Mating with only the company of cthia for his passions. It would be destructively emotional to regret Tovol?s course of action. Neither of our psi-indexes are particularly high. It would have been effectively impossible for him to be aware of my survival.
What I find unacceptably distressing about Orions in the Vulcan Sector is not what they are, but where they are. The history of The War between the unified Vulcan clans and the Orion Interstellar Guild of two thousand years ago remains an important narrative among my people. This has at times had negative outcomes, as when the invoked 'memory' of the war prompted the Vulcan High Council to delay aiding the Romulan government during the Hobus Crisis. However, the received katric records of the conflict have more commonly benefited Vulcan integration into galactic society, as when Vulcan joined the nascent United Federation of Planets in the 22nd century rather than face a renewed period of interstellar conflict alone.
But Vulcan has, as far as I can see, largely forgotten that conflict. I have contacted several scholars at the Science Academy in Shi'kar in this matter but they do not share my conclusions. Their consensus is that the presence of Orion raiders near Vulcan is simply an 'unfortunate happenstance of contemporary Alpha Quadrant politics'. One scholar even suggested that my 'feelings' are a product of 'emotional dislocation' brought on by my transition through the anomaly along with the crew of the April and with the subsequent discrediting of my previous scientific endeavors.
I was one of the primary scholars of transwarp science in the mid-24th century. I am the author of the Kaav Theorem of Stardate 33371 which demonstrated that transwarp drive was not possible given the collapsed wave function of the transwarp tachyon in the Cochrane frame of reference. The Kaav Theorem was disproved by the discovery of the La Forge Effect on Stardate 46982.1 which demonstrated that a Galaxy-class warp core was capable of generating sufficient tri-tachyon energy to access a transwarp effect. The construction of the Federation transwarp network in recent decades was the final demonstration that the Kaav Theorem relied on a flawed understanding of transwarp physics produced by the limited technology of the mid-24th century.
However, though our technology was limited compared to that of the early 25th century, the political power of the Federation was far less in abeyance. The idea of Orion raiders in Federation space would have been absurd in 2349 - at the time Orion vessels would have been easily detected by border patrols and forcibly escorted back to one of the Orion core worlds. It is unlikely that the Federation and Orion vessels would even have exchanged weapons fire, given the extreme military superiority enjoyed by the Federation of the period. Given its lack of centralized authority and predatory economic base, traditional Orion society is only a threat to surrounding states during periods of political weakness, as in the era before Vulcan gained space travel, as in the period before the formation of the Federation, and the like.
Thus, the encounter with Orion pirates in which the April rescued the SS Azura and recruited Commander Jinnifreuz aboard our vessel suggests the crisis with Federation central authority runs deeper than the current military conflicts with the Borg, Klingons, Tholians, and others. That the Orion ships did not flee, but instead opened fire on a Federation starship, is equally of grave concern. They fought a Starfleet vessel in the heart of the Federation, as if fully expecting a victory - as if they had done so before, and been victorious. If Federation authority has been so weakened, the fundamental crisis of the early 25th century is a very grave one indeed.
Nonetheless, the depth of my emotional reaction to these events remains troubling. This may be a result of my mind-meld with Commander Sharon during the incident at the Vega colony, in which our so-called 'retrofit' was interrupted by the Borg attack. The wrath she felt at the return of the Collective was profound. Perhaps I should speak to Dr. Karatek about arranging a healing meld with him.
This was supposed to be a 'milk run', you know? Somebody's brilliant idea - send an Ambassador-class ship to ferry an ambassador from Vulcan to P'Jem. Give the famous Robert April something nice to do that didn't put us in danger. So instead we find out that not only can Klingons show up and raid right in the heart of our civilization, but the Undine can just park one of their killer battleships in orbit of one of the freaking core worlds of the Federation and we have no way of knowing about it till they decide to show their ugly faces! Is there any place in this freaking era that isn't totally overrun by war, and monsters, and death? Mamma mia!
Sorry, Doc. You can take the girl out of Iotia, but you can't take Iotia outta the girl, I guess. Anyway, I took command when the Admiral went down with the ambassador and the landing party. Good thing, too, because he kept things going down there and helped save all those monks from rampaging Klingons (again, Klingons rampaging on P'Jem like it's nothin'!) and the Undine when they showed their faces. I'm more of a space girl myself, I don't think I could have done much down there.
I had never seen one of those ships in my life except in the review tapes we got when we were debriefing at the Vega Colony, but our new guys, the add-on bridge crew from the 25th century, they knew what were fighting. Should have heard them gasp. Jini actually fought the Undine back in the day when her old ship scrapped with one of those Nicor jobs, so she looks up at me and says "Commander, we need to get out of here, _now_!" And I look at her like she's nuts and I say "Starfleet doesn't run!"
And then I sit down in the command chair and I look at the readouts and see what kind of powerplant they've got on that thing, and I say some bad words I maybe shouldn't put on a recorder, Doc. That thing can tear us apart like we're an unmanned target hulk, but we can't run either because then it can set all of freaking P'Jem on fire! So I yell "Evasive! All power to the engines!" while Jini gets on the horn with the Kirk and sends out a distress call, and all the time those damn yellow plasma torps are coming at us. BOOM - rear shields drop to 50% in one hit, and with the next one you can hear duranium burning, and the kid in tactical is trying to hit them but there are just too many, and then, and then -
I hear it. Yeah, okay, I hear it. They tell me it's not that uncommon, really. It's not that strange. There's still so much of them in my brain, just physically wrapped in there, and the docs couldn't get it out. So it's not crazy that I would hear them, right? It...okay, here's what they said.
Five of Seven. Initial Adjunct to Temporal Vessel 6544. The projectile weapons of Species 8472 are vulnerable to Frequency... And I hear it in my head, reading off how to kill this bastard - this VOICE of the Collective, with so much power, so much knowledge, so much...control, and I want to stand there and cry because it's the voice of _Death_ in my mind. The voice of death for my mind.
But you know what I do? I tell the kid at tactical to retune the phasers and cram right up there next to it like it's all normal. You know why? Because I'm a freaking Starfleet officer! And when the Kirk gets there we're blowing up those torpedoes before they even get out of their tubes. Hell, we actually managed to damage the thing! And then we join in the big fight, and I tell you, it's beautiful watching that thing fly off when we've beaten the bloody bastard.
The minute the Admiral gets back on board, he puts me in for the freaking Pike of all things. "Commander Rose Sharon led an Ambassador-class vessel in a running fight with a Tethys-class Undine ship, leading the vessel away from P'Jem and protecting its inhabitants from attack by this powerful enemy vessel..." Anyway, they said I saved five, six thousand lives, and everyone on the April. So they gave me a medal. The Pike medal for saving the April with the help of the Kirk. Funny how that works. Everyone's really happy for me. The admiral, he told me he hopes I'm turning things around.
There's just one thing, though, one little thing. I look at that medal and I know I didn't win it.