A book in the Star Trek Novel Verse, by David Mack. It continues the story arcs of Julian Bashir's involvement in Section 31 (and following on from his leaving Starfleet in Star Trek: The Fall), the Galactic Commonwealth of the mirror universe (Star Trek: Mirror Universe), and the efforts of the Breen to acquire mirror universe technology (Star Trek: Cold Equations). In 2017, it was followed by Section 31: Control.
This book contains examples of:
- Arc Welding: The novel picks up formally unrelated plot threads from Rise Like Lions, Silent Weapons, A Ceremony of Losses and others.
- Bad "Bad Acting": When Sarina "reveals" her affiliation with Section 31 to Bashir, they think their acting job is working. We cut to a Section 31 redoubt, where one of the agents says Sarina's "too wooden" and Bashir's "overselling it."
- Blue and Orange Morality: Even facing the possibility of the deaths of trillions and the end of the entire Dominion, the mirror female Changeling is dead set on bringing Bashir to trial... so determined, in fact, that everyone, including Bashir, was convinced that they intended to execute Bashir regardless of his defense. As it turns out, she considered self-defense an entirely valid reason for Bashir to have killed Odo, and his name is cleared in about five minutes.
- Die Laughing / Laughing Mad: Thot Trom. His superiors' attempted recovery of a crashed Alternate Universe starship from Tirana III in Star Trek: Cold Equations was a failure, costing the Breen vast amounts of money and resources, as well as embarrassing them politically. This failure leads to Trom's penetration of the alternate universe in this novel - where he ends up hijacking a starship and being sent several years into the past, crashing the ship on Tirana III. Realizing in his last moments that he is responsible for the entire wasteful affair in every way, he spends those moments laughing crazily.
- Fate Worse than Death: Cole and the other Section 31 operatives are exiled to an alternate universe that has no sapient life.
- Feed the Mole: Section 31 is well aware that Bashir wants to bring them down from the inside, so they allow him to think he's infiltrated so they can use him for their purposes.
- Gunboat Diplomacy: Both the Galactic Commonwealth (or at least their patrons, Memory Omega) and the Mirror Dominion, both of which stand by their principles at any cost and use threat of force as a diplomatic tool even while preferring peaceful negotiation. The Commonwealth's principles are new and fragile, so it feels it must defend them at any cost - the Dominion's are old and entrenched, and it feels the same.
- Kangaroo Court: Bashir is convinced that if the mirror universe's Dominion extradite him for killing mirror!Odo, it will be for a show trial before they execute him. It isn't.
- Killed Off for Real: A variant of this trope. In an alternate universe, The Enterprise's Chief of Security is Deanna Troi. In reality, both Denise Crosby and Marina Sirtis auditioned for this role, but Crosby won out, hence Sirtis became the ship's Counselor. Tasha Yar isn't even mentioned in the novel.
- Reasonable Authority Figure: The mirror!Female Changeling to Bashir's surprise. Once she's presented with evidence that he killed mirror!Odo in self-defense, she acquits him.
- Sinister Silhouettes: "Control". Also an evident Sequel Hook.
- Stable Time Loop: Thot Tran's attempted recovery of an Alternate Universe ship from Tirana III in Cold Equations and Thot Trom's later penetration of that universe in this novel, which sees him hijacking a ship and then falling back to Tirana III...