When an abandoned space habitat is found within a distant asteroid belt, the Starship Enterprise is sent to investigate. Captain Kirk and his crew discover an artificial world full of technological marvels -- and unexpected dangers. But wonder and curiosity give way to fear when the habitat's shifting orbit sends it on a collision course with an inhabited planet within the same solar system. Now Kirk and Spock must find a way to save the planet without destroying a treasure trove of alien science, and time is running out...
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Pocket Books/Star Trek
October 31, 1997
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Excerpt from Heart Of The Sun Star Trek 83 by Pamela Sargent
Text Excerpt 1
They shut down their operations, left the data I retrieval area, and entered the outside gallery.Scotty came toward them down the long, wide corridor, with Wellesley Warren at his side. McCoy could hear the young Tyrtaean's laughter even at this distance. The man had to be something of an eccentric and misfit by this world's standards; Wellesley Warren laughed easily, smiled more often, and didn't shy away from shaking hands or uttering a friendly greeting, as most Tyrtaeans did. But he was much more restrained when other Tyrtaeans came near, as if he could show his warmer nature only to the crew of the Enterprise.Life here couldn't be easy for him, McCoy thought. Yet Wellesley Warren was also one of Myra Coles's trusted aides. If he had been able to win her respect, then obviously he had been successful at concealing qualities his people would see as weaknesses. It was puzzling, but maybe there were other relationships here that escaped the usual, and more than one Wellesley Warren."Where are we headed?" Christine Chapel asked as Scotty approached."Wellesley here advised us to try Redann's Tavern," Scotty replied. "It's just across the square." "You could go to Doretta's Cafeteria if Redann's is crowded," Wellesley Warren said, "but it's three streets down, and, frankly, the food at Redann's is better. You'll be served er, welcome there."McCoy reminded himself that there were places I that would probably not welcome them. "Ask for the special it's always the best thing on the menu." "Coming with us?" McCoy asked. "I have to meet with Myra and a team of historians." Warren was one of the people working on restoring lost cultural data. "Enjoy your lunch." The Tyrtaean hurried toward a staircase on their right."When's the rest of your team beaming back here?" McCoy asked Scotty."Most of them will be back this afternoon," the engineer said, "but Mister Spock needs a couple of engineers to work with him aboard the ship. He requested the two who are best at sensor system analysis and repair." "He's already got Ali Massoud," McCoy said.Lieutenant Commander Massoud, a methodical young science officer who had won several commendations and also Spock's respect, was on duty with the Vulcan. "You'd think that would be enough help."It had surprised McCoy that Kirk had sent Spock back to the Enterprise two days ago; the Vulcan and the Tyrtaeans seemed made for one another. But maybe the captain preferred to have his second in command aboard his ship, and Spock seemed anxious if a Vulcan could feel anxious to continue his observations of the unknown object, which was unexpectedly persisting in its sunward course."He's very curious about that thing," Nurse Chapel said."He sounded unusually interested when he I spoke to me," Scotty said, "and if I didn't know better, I'd say he was even a wee bit worried about it."Redann's Tavern, housed in a stone structure near the Callinus Administrative Center, turned out to be a large room filled with plain wooden tables and long benches."This is a tavern?" Scotty whispered as they sat down at a table near the back of the room. "Seems I more like a study hall.""Or a prison mess hall," Christine Chapel murmured."Maybe the food and drink will be worth it," McCoy said.The waiter who took their order was a grimfaced man in a black tunic and trousers. He brought them three plates of meat and dark bread and three mugs of an amber-colored beverage, along with three knives.McCoy made a sandwich of his meat and bread, I cut it in half with his knife, and took a bite. The meat was well-cooked, probably boiled, without gravy or seasonings. "This is the special?" he said, keeping his voice low. "If this is the best dish on the menu, I'd hate to see the worst."Christine Chapel took a bite of her bread, then grimaced. "I had a childhood friend whose mother always used to complain that the foods that were best for you always seemed to taste the worst. She would have considered this bread very healthful."Scottysipped from his mug. "Tastes like watery tea. You'd think an establishment that calls itself a tavern would have something stronger to offer." He sighed. "These people make even Vulcans seem jolly."McCoy chuckled, earning himself several blank I stares from four men at a nearby table. "I don't think anyone here knows what a joke is," he said, then took another bite of his sandwich. "Well, here's one joke this meat!""I don't know which is funnier," Scotty said with a straight face, "the food or the drink."But the food satisfied McCoy's hunger, and the tealike beverage warmed his stomach and lifted his spirits a little, and he tried to think in a more fairminded way. Maybe the Tyrtaeans weren't quite as dour as they seemed; maybe you had to get to know them before they loosened up. The physicians had certainly seemed more congenial while they were sharing their medical lore. Wellesley Warren was a friendly enough fellow, and there might be others like him. Myra Coles obviously respected her young aide; McCoy, during one meeting with them both, had seen how attentive she was to Warren's ideas about recovering lost historical data. Maybe she wasn't as cold and humorless as she appeared.