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(written from a Production point of view)
The first of three novels focusing on six civilizations, Book One focuses on the Cardassians and the Andorians.
- From the back cover
- Within every federation and every empire, behind every hero and every villain, there are the worlds that define them. In the aftermath of Unity and in the daring tradition of Spock's World, The Final Reflection, and A Stitch in Time, the civilizations most closely tied to Star Trek: Deep Space Nine can now be experienced as never before... in tales both sweeping and intimate, reflective and prophetic, eerily familiar and utterly alien.
- CARDASSIA: The last world ravaged by the Dominion War is also the last on which Miles O'Brien ever imagined building a life. As he joins in the reconstruction of Cardassia's infrastructure, his wife Keiko spearheads the planet's difficult agricultural renewal. But Cardassia's struggle to remake itself – from the fledgling democracy backed by Elim Garak to the people's rediscovery of their own spiritual past – is not without opposition, as the outside efforts to help rebuild its civilization come under attack by those who reject any alien influence.
- ANDOR: On the eve of a great celebration of their ancient past, the unusual and mysterious Andorians, a species with four sexes, must decide just how much they are willing to sacrifice in order to ensure their survival. Biological necessity clashes with personal ethics; cultural obligation vies with love – and Ensign Thirishar ch'Thane returns home to the planet he forswore, to face not only the consequences of his choices, but a clandestine plan to alter the very nature of his kind.
The Lotus Flower (Cardassia) Edit
Keiko O'Brien has been appointed as the new director of the Andak project, a project to make Cardassia more fertile. While she is awaiting vedek Yevir, Miles O'Brien meets with Elim Garak in the capital city to speak in front of the directorate: there is a decision to be made about which project to support - the Andak or the... Miles is an expert supposed to speak for the Andak project.
However, during the discussion in the directorate, even before Miles gets to his speech, disturbance is caused by the accusations of one former gul named Merak Entor, who is actively working against the Andak project. Alon Ghemor adjourns the meeting for the afternoon.
Meanwhile, Yevir has arrived at the Andak project's site; while giving a speech, the Cardassian teenager Nyra turns up with a bomb attached to her. She claims that she will light it, and that she wants all aliens to go away from Cardassia, and also that the Oralian way shall be forbidden. The situation comes to a dead end when she keeps declaring her demands over and over again.
In the capital, Ghemor, O'Brien, and Garak follow the events, first on screen, later by the reports of security; Ghemor decides to send Macet and O'Brien to the site, and also has security troops stand by.
At Andak, Macet starts to talk to Nyra, but gets stuck ultimately. Vedek Yevir then approaches the young girl and manages to turn her down - by words. She is arrested, but continues to speak with Yevir who has still some hope for her.
Garak meanwhile visits an old "friend" - a man he questioned a few years back, a follower of the True Way. He finds out that the True Way not only made Nyra threaten the Andak project, but they are also responsible for Entor's objection in the directorate. After the visit, Entor withdraws his objections to the project and it becomes the one that is officially supported by the Cardassian government.
While the followers of the Oralian way continue to show themselves openly at Andak, Tela, who has a more conservative view on Cardassian traditions (a view she believes has encouraged her daughter to follow the True Way) together with some others sharing similar thoughts, leaves the site. Keiko is sad about this, but ultimately understands and is pleased to continue with her work.
Paradigm (Andor) Edit
Shar, Prynn Tenmei, and Phillipa Matthias, DS9's counselor, are called to Andor - for Thriss' funeral. While Shar is not invited directly, Phillipa is, and Prynn decides to accompany Shar - as their relationship has deepened and at least Prynn is almost certain in love with Shar. As they arrive on Andor, they become aware of the political unstable situation - the conservative Visionist party is claiming that some secret experiments are ongoing with the Yrynthy eggs (see novel This Gray Spirit) - experiments that would alter the Andorian species to become one with only two sexes.
After a storm, they all have to go to Thriss' family; Shar is not particularly welcome, but still Andorian hospitality traditions make sure he can stay. While everyone prepares for the mourning ceremony, Shar meets his other bondmates - Anichent and Dhizei. Left in an emotionally disturbed state, Shar finally escapes the unbearable situation - and Prynn, out of love, accompanies him again. They end up in a party where an Andor drug, saf, is given to both of them - and only because Anichent secretly followed them are they rescued.
When he awakens, Shar is shattered to hear that his zhavey has been abducted - and that the responsible persons are the bondmates of Thia, an acquaintance of Phillipa, Prynn and Shar (they met her during the travel across Andor). Thia agrees to help track down her bondmates; in a dangerous expedition, Prynn, Thia, Shar and Phillipa manage to not only find the place the kidnappers are hiding at, but also evidence that the four gender species indeed has evolved on Andor, a fact that was doubted sometimes.
Vretha and Shar, after the safe return of the former, learn that the accusations regarding the alteration experiments regarding the Andorian sexes are indeed true - Vretha publicly announces this and steps down as Federation representative. But some other research on the Yrynthy eggs also helps in expanding the time window in which Andorians are fertile - thus establishing hope for the future.
Because of the heroic rescue, Shar is allowed to attend Thriss' funeral, and he finally finds peace with himself. He, at last, is ready to perform the mating ceremony with his bondmates, which now includes the formerly-bonded Thia. He tells Prynn that he loves her too, but that their relationship has to wait until... someday.
- Alon Ghemor, nephew of Tekeny Ghemor, is now the leader of the (democratic) Cardassian Union.
- Garak still has many informants and people that owe him favors from his earlier life.
- The Oralian Way, a spiritual movement on Cardassia, is feared by many Cardassians to disturb the shattered world further.
- Charivretha zh'Thane is no longer Andorian representative to the Federation.
- The Yrynthy eggs have finally been of use - the Andorian species will be able to reproduce itself more quickly because of the genetic discoveries on these eggs.
- Shar is on official leave from DS9 for an unknown period of time.
- Andor went through some critical times with demonstrations and protests – these events were followed on in Star Trek: Typhon Pact.
- Cover art was done by Geoff Mandel with design by John Vairo, Jr..
- Canon characters listed below are linked to the main article about them. Non-canon characters are not linked, but those that recurred, appearing or being mentioned in more than one story, are defined further in Pocket DS9 characters.
The Lotus Flower Edit
- Miles O'Brien
- Starfleet officer, former Chief of Operations on DS9
- Keiko O'Brien
- biologist, director of the Andak project
- Molly O'Brien
- daughter of the O'Briens
- Kirayoshi O'Brien
- son of the O'Briens
- Elim Garak
- former member of the Obsidian Order, now adviser to the Cardassian Government
- Former Cardassian Gul
- Feric Lakhat
- Cardassian geologist, member of Keiko's team
- Tela Maleren
- Caradassian scientist; mother of Nyra
- Yevir Linjarin
- Bajoran vedek
- Alon Ghemor
- Castellan (democratic leader of the Cardassian Union)
- daughter of Tela Maleren, follower of the True Way
- Thirishar ch'Thane
- ensign aboard DS9 and the Defiant
- Prynn Tenmei
- ensign on DS9, daughter of Elias Vaugn
- Commander Phillipa Matthias, DS9's counselor
- Charivretha zh'Thane
- Andorian member of the Federation council, zhavey (mother) of Thirishar
- Sessethantis zh'Cheen
- Zhavey of the late Shathirissa
- Arenthialeh zh'Vazdi (Thia)
- Worlds of Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, Volume 1 at Memory Beta, the wiki for licensed Star Trek works
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