Real World article
(written from a Production point of view)

The Federation faces extinction from an awesome new weapon.


From the book jacket
A Romulan Bird-of-Prey mysteriously drifts over the Neutral Zone and into Federation territory. Admiral Kirk and the crew of the Enterprise investigate, only to find the ship dead in space. When Starfleet orders the derelict ship brought to Earth for investigation, the Enterprise returns home with perhaps her greatest prize.
But the Bird-of-Prey carries a dangerous cargo, a deadly force that is soon unleashed in the heart of the Federation. Suddenly, the only hope for the Federation's survival lies buried in the tortured memory of Commander Spock's protégé, a cadet named Saavik. Together, Spock and Saavik must return to the nightmare world of Saavik's birth, a planet called Hellguard, to discover the secret behind the Romulans' most deadly threat of all.

Excerpts of copyrighted sources are included for review purposes only, without any intention of infringement.

Memorable quotesEdit

"Mr. Spock, I would like to ask a question..."

- Cadet Saavik (repeated passim)

"So you are not afraid. Then come with me and you shall have your stars."

- Spock, to the young Saavik

"To you humans will seem irrational, frivolous, full of contradictions and continually exasperating--all of which is true. They are also inventive, capable of greatness, and worthy of study."

- Spock, welcoming Saavik to Starfleet Academy

"...and I would appreciate further discussion of the word 'fun,' which seems to be the underlying basis of Human behavior. On that subject, I have a number of questions..."

- Saavik, in her return message to Mr. Spock

"Look, Spock! Rabbits!"
"Yes. Introduced for the predators after the drought. Terran, Oryctolagus cuniculus; family Leporidae, order Lagomorpha, class Mammalia, subphylum-"
"What are they doing?"
"...mating, Saavik. Subphylum Vertebrata, phylum-"
"To make more rabbits? But they have too many already!"

- Saavik and Spock

"Why are there too many rabbits, but not too many Vulcans?"
"Rabbits mate as often as every six weeks, whereas Vulcans must mate only once every seven years."

- Saavik and Spock

"I am glad you did not die, Spock. You or your captain."
"I too, Saavikam."
"She was a bitch!"
"That is, among other things, inaccurate. The term refers-"
"Oh, I know what it refers – and that's what she was!"

- Saavik and Spock, on T'Pring

"I wouldn't have missed this for anything. That kid's not giving Spock a minute's peace – and he's as happy as a clam."

- Uhura, to herself, watching Saavik and Spock on the Enterprise bridge

"Computer, stick that back up the Admiral's... database."

- James T. Kirk, discovering Admiral Nogura's order to assign him to Starfleet Headquarters

"I also suggested that he contact T'Pau on Vulcan, but for some reason he seemed disinclined to do that."
"No doubt."

- Saavik and Spock, on Admiral Nogura

"That is the subject of our discussion, except for the question of my exact age. Since I... am not certain, he asked who spoke for me in matters of consent. Why?"
"A Human technicality. It is of no consequence, except to them. What did you answer?"
"That I speak for myself! And if that was insufficient, you would speak for me.

- Saavik and Spock

"How in the hell does he do that, change expressions without moving a muscle in his face?"

- Leonard McCoy, to himself, watching Spock's reaction to his catalogue of Saavik's childhood injuries.

"Wait a minute, Spoock! Her blood scan shows that she's half-Romulan. Does she know that? And does it have something to do with how she got these injuries?"
"Of course she knows, Doctor. And it has everything to do with it."
"That son of a... now he tells me!"

- Leonard McCoy and Spock

"It's just all this waiting! But that's what they say, isn't it, sir--that the waiting's always the worst.'"
"Then they're wrong, Michaels. The waiting is not the worst."

- Adjutant Michaels and Admiral Nogura, the latter recalling his ancestor's death at Hiroshima during World War 2

"Do you find this interesting?"

- Spock and Saavik

Background informationEdit


Canon charactersEdit

James T. Kirk
Leonard McCoy
Montgomery Scott
Hikaru Sulu
Pavel Chekov
George Stocker

Original charactersEdit

Robert Harper


officially designated 872 Trianguli V, this planet's name in the Romulan language, Thieurrull, translates as "Hellguard". Located in the Romulan Neutral Zone, the Romulans attempted to colonize the planet, but later abandoned it. It became the testing grounds for "The Ten"'s experimental bio-weapon. The planet was referenced in the earlier novel The Romulan Way by Diane Duane, as the site of the "Thieurrull Atrocity," and later in Margaret Wander Bonanno's novel Unspoken Truth.
Pandora's Box
USS Constitution
Gamma Eridani
"Amok Time": Spock relates to Saavik the story of his failed koon-ut-kal-if-fee on Vulcan, and his broken betrothal with T'Pring;
"The Corbomite Maneuver": Saavik re-lives the Enterprise countdown to self-destruction when she steps onto the bridge;
"The Tholian Web": Saavik re-lives the Enterprise capture by the Tholians when she steps onto the bridge;
"Space Seed": Saavik re-lives Khan Noonien Singh's hijacking of the Enterprise when when she steps onto the bridge;
"The City on the Edge of Forever": Saavik re-lives Leonard McCoy's near-disastrous self-medication when she steps onto the bridge;
Star Trek: The Motion Picture: Spock confesses to Saavik his failure to become an initiate in Kohlinar, shortly before his return to the Enterprise crew;
"The Menagerie, Part I": Spock admits to his own hijacking of the Enterprise, to make his point to Saavik that orders may sometimes be disobeyed for the greater good, but that does not excuse a lack of proper planning.
a venerated brand of Scotch on Earth; Achernar has several ancient bottles in his ship's cargo, and gifts them to Montgomery Scott.
Treasure Island
A young ensign in The Vault shows Admiral Kirk an antique copy of Robert Louis Stevenson's classic novel, which Kirk fondly remembers from his own childhood.
World War 2
Admiral Nogura's most prized possession is an ancient Bonsai tree that belonged to an ancestor who died during the Atom bomb explosion at Hiroshima during World War II; the tree miraculously survived the explosion, possibly shielded by his ancestor's falling body.


Four Vulcan ships are captured, their crews are used by the Romulans as test subjects for the Hellguard weapons. Some of the Vulcans are raped, their children are left behind when the Romulans abandon the planet.
The Enterprise intercepts a craft originating in the Neutral Zone, with a Vulcan woman on board. Spock mind-melds with her as she dies, learning of the horror of Hellguard.
Shortly thereafter, a team of Vulcan scientists follow Spock to Hellguard and find many Vulcan children abandoned there, their ages ranging from 5 to 14 years.
Spock takes a year's leave to educate Saavik so she may return to Vulcan.
Early 2280s
Saavik becomes a freshman cadet at Starfleet Academy.
The Enterprise discovers the Bird-of-Prey, Nogura orders Admiral Kirk to return to Earth.

External linksEdit

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#48: Rules of Engagement Pocket TOS
Numbered novels
#50: Doctor's Orders
The Klingon Gambit (#33) Titan Books release order  The Prometheus Design (#35)

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