Literature / Star Trek: Mere Anarchy
A series of six novellas and part of the Star Trek Novel Verse
. The series chronicles the aftermath of a disaster on the planet Mestiko, as it affects both the natives and the original Star Trek
crew under Kirk, over the entire course of the original series era.
This series contains examples of:
- After the End: With the exception of the first story, the series revolves around Mestiko's rebuilding following a planetary disaster (the first story, of course, is about the disaster).
- Apocalypse How: By means of a rogue pulsar passing through the star system, bombarding planet Mestiko with radiation.
- Apron Matron: Elee.
- Arc Welding: The series stretches across the entire original Star Trek era, filling in some of the gaps between films.
- Blind Seer: Apparently, the Payav also have a tradition of the Blind Seer in popular culture, as evidenced by Odra maVolan's deliberate attempt to evoke it. See: Sinister Minister, below.
- Deadpan Snarker: Nawaz Mazari, who offers several totally deadpan, sarcastic comments while hearing Kirk and McCoy's cover story. Told that the pair have just lost their jobs, Mazari comments "I may cry".
- Dumb Muscle: "Curly". Kirk notes while negotiating with the man that thinking is presumably not his strong point.
- Earn Your Happy Ending.
- Face–Heel Turn: Theena elMadej. Essentially the adoptive daughter of Reasonable Authority Figure Raya elMora, she allies with a terrorist faction in the fifth installment.
- Fantastic Slurs: A'Sloointa Dinpayav! (No-Necked Offworlder). Plus vikak.
- Fictional Political Party: The Payavist Inward Party, one of the most conservative political groups on post-Pulse Mestiko. It objects to alien presence, and seeks to put an end to Federation interference in the rebuilding. Eventually, its members launch a successful coup against the Zamestaad government.
- Fight Magnet: Kirk. As he asks McCoy, "what were the chances someone wasn't going to hit me at some point?"
- Going Native: Marat Lon. A human scientist, he remains on Mestiko when a reactionary coup forces the Federation and other aliens off the planet. He disguises himself as a native, but doesn't do a very good job of blending in. Fortunately, he is discovered by native factions sympathetic to his cause, who instruct him in how to pass as a Mestiko resident. He transforms over time from an arrogant, somewhat patronizing outsider to someone with a deep concern for the Mestiko peoples. He takes a native name and the woman who helped educate him in the local culture becomes his wife.
- Hero of Another Story: The fourth tale attempts to give the impression that Starfleet captains across the board have noteworthy adventures, avoiding the implications that Kirk is the guy to which everything interesting happens. When Kirk mentions he was present at a particular event, the captain he's talking too responds with a casual "oh yeah, that was you", and it's mentioned that this captain was off having his own adventure at the time.
- Heroic Sacrifice: A low-key variety, but still moving. Dr. Apohatsu and his team could easily call the Federation for personal evacuation during the struggle to save Mestiko from the Pulse. Instead, they promise to remain with the Mestiko natives as a show of solidarity and faith; and ultimately die.
"Is that true, my friend? Do you stand with us and await our fate?" Realizing what was being asked of him- and the inherent trust that hinged on his response- Nathan Apohatsu nodded. "We stand with you, First Consul, until the end."
- Heel–Face Turn: Traal. He was a traitor to the Mestiko government, but he soon turned against the Klingons when he realized they cared only for themselves, regardless of the harm they inflicted on the Mestiko people.
- Hilarious in Hindsight: One chapter opens with, ""Where's Sulu?", asked Kirk, rhetorically."
- Hope Springs Eternal: The (supposedly) last surviving noggik tree, which becomes a symbol of hope for Mestiko’s recovery. After it finally dies, a bank of seeds are discovered.
- In Harmony with Nature: The Kazarites, who use their skills to assist in restoring Mestiko's ecosystem. Kazarites were pre-established as being a race In Harmony with Nature, and thus were a natural choice to appear in this series.
- Interservice Rivalry: The Pesh-manut, Mestiko's new intelligence agency, is a conglomerate joining multiple older agencies in common cause. In practice, their various agendas are still evident and often clash.
- Left Hanging: Mestiko's final decision as to whether it joins the Federation, the Klingon Empire, or remains independent, is not actually revealed. More recent novels, such as ''Losing the Peace'' do hint that it joined the Federation, but this is far from certain. At the very least, the conclusion is Left Hanging for the purposes of this series.
- Literary Allusion Title: To Yeats' "The Second Coming". The title of the series qualifies, as does the title of each novel in the series.
- Patrick Stewart Speech: Terrell gives one as he's being held at gunpoint, telling a soldier who is Just Following Orders to stop and think about whether what he is doing is the right thing or not.
- Reasonable Authority Figure: Raya elMora.
- The Rival: Asal Janto to Raya elMora.
- Sarcastic Devotee: McCoy to Kirk, particularly in the third story. Sometimes Kirk returns the favour, such as when he tells McCoy to ready his phaser and "hope we get attacked by the broad side of a barn".
- Science Is Bad: The conservative religious factions are not pleased with the introduction of alien life-forms to revitalize the Mestiko ecosystem. They insist instead that the planet will heal itself over time by the grace of god. Indeed, they believe the scientific efforts are merely polluting the world further and delaying that rebirth.
- Sinister Minister: Odra maVolan. He’s also apparently the Blind Seer...until he hypocritically makes use of new technologies and medical treatments to restore his vision, while attempting to fool the public and keep his Blind Seer status.
- Space Cold War: Mestiko is trapped right in the middle of the cold war between the Federation and the Klingons.
- Survivor's Guilt: Elee has a little, having survived as an old woman while so many younger people died in the pulsar catastrophe. Sometimes it makes her a little quick to anger.
"I am an old woman who should have died long before the millions of Payav I've seen pass from our world, including my own children. I simply ask that you forgive a woman, who has seen too much death and despair, her occasional sharp tongue".
- Terraform: Attempts to reclaim the surface of Mestiko drive much of the story arc.
- Treachery Cover-Up: The city of vosTraal was named in honour of a native leader who, according to the history books, sacrificed himself to save the planet. What those books leave out is that this was in fact a Heel–Face Turn and he was originally a traitor.
- Verbal Tic: A variation. Not a specific word, but...Does Vykul Marto have normal speech patterns? I think not. Does he phrase his speech as questions a good deal? Yes. Can it get quite annoying after a while? I think so.
- Values Dissonance: A deliberately-evoked, in-universe example, with the opening quotes from book five:
He who lives by the sword dies by the sword. - Human proverb.
Live by the sword. Die by the sword. Capture eternal honor. - Klingon Laws of Honor from the Scrolls of Kahless.
Wield the sharpest blade with the greatest care. - Vulcan scripture.
- Weapon of Mass Destruction: The subspace disruption weapon created at the Discovery Centre on Mestiko's moon Varnex. This wasn't what most people on Mestiko had in mind when the Discovery Centre was brought online as a research facility.
- Wham Line: In the final story, the various factions are bickering and feeling that Captain Kirk's absence is a deliberate insult by the Federation. When elMora shouts "Captain Kirk is dead!", it stuns the assembled factions into silence.
- You Can't Go Home Again: The inhabitants of Mestiko...even though they never leave:
"This is not, nor will it ever be, the Mestiko that we who grew to adulthood before the Pulse remember. We can rebuild the cities levelled in the disaster. We can dredge our waterways and restore our shorelines and reforest and plant crops on purified soil, and we have done so. We can find new and creative ways to utilize the vast regions of topography altered in the original disaster, and we have done so. Ours is now a flourishing world. But while the flora and fauna have been almost completely repopulated, they are...different".