By Hoshissis

Rating: PG

Genres: humour missing scene

Keywords: Archer

This story has been read by 2374 people.
This story has been read 6896 times.

Chapter 1

Disclaimer: Property of Paramount.

Authors Note: Its set just after the cogenitors death.  This chapter is generally Trip's thoughts on why he did what he did.  It's basically a background chapter with behind the scenes on what could have happened to make Archer so mad at the end, with some fill in the blanks on how it all got out of hand.  Later chapters are going to build up to Starfleet having a court marshall trial on Trip's behavior.

A Huge thank you to my Beta Dinah for all her hard work, encouragement and advise.

"Humans can't refrain from drawing conclusions.

You should learn to objectify other cultures, so you know when to interfere and when not to."

Never had truer words been spoken, thought Trip, as he stood staring out of his quarter's window watching the stars fly quickly by. Why oh why hadn't he taken T'Pol's and Phlox's advice and left well enough alone.  Instead he had gotten more deeply involved in trying to improve aspects of Charles's life and then before he knew it, events had just spiraled out of control to disastrous conclusions.  

It was the humane thing to do he had thought.  She/he was a sentient being and deserved to be treated as such.  If she had to stay inside her quarters, why couldn't she be entertained, reading books, listening to music etc?  Geez, even Porthos had his chew toys. What was there for Charles?  Nothing.  She was just left to sit like an unused piece of furniture, waiting to be pulled out when needed.  

He had wanted to teach her to read, a small thing that she could build upon as she sat alone in her quarters.  What he hadn't anticipated was her species ability to learn so fast.  In a space of a few short hours she had gone from reading a few words, to reading whole texts.  That should have been a sign for him to back off then, but seeing the sheer wonder in her eyes as she read each new book and watching her imagine it all in her mind made him want to carry on and show her that there was more she could do in her life than just sit and stare at four small walls.

After that, event's had just spiraled out of control.  He had been banned from entering the Vissians's ship after they had tried and failed to find him the day before, while he was teaching Charles to read. They had been furious when they had found out where he was and didn't want to know or even understand his reasoning why.  It had annoyed him when T'Pol had also displayed the same attitude, not wanting to know, understand or even care as to why he had been there and what he had hoped to achieve.

 Since he hadn't come to the Cogenitor, she came to see him the next day, craving to spend more time in his company.  He knew he might get into trouble, but seeing the hope in her eyes had torn right into his heart.  It had taken a lot of courage for her to sneak over here and reach out to him, and he was damned sure he wasn't going to throw that away and send her running back to those four lonely, empty walls.  

He gave her a tour of Enterprise and was amazed at how alive she'd become on seeing all the new technology, firing questions at him from all angles and wanting to know how everything worked.   After, they had gone back to his quarters to watch one of his all time favorite science fiction movies and play a game of "go".  While they were discussing the finer points of the movie, her species fast ability to learn had surprised him yet again when she beat him at "go" - the first time he'd lost in over four years.

On her return to the Vissian ship, events started to spiral out of control.  The Vissian chief engineer, who Charles was placed with, was furious that she'd sneaked away.  He had threatened to physically reprimand her and lock her in their quarters, while he accused Commander Tucker of trying to destabilize their society.  As T'Pol tried to calm down the tension, Charles broke away again and gained access to Enterprise, where she went to Engineering and asked Commander Tucker for asylum.  In her opinion, life was unlivable onboard the Vissian ship, as her rights as an individual were being ignored.  Trip had told her that she was just as clever as them and had the same rights, so she was entitled to be treated like the other Vissians.

 Both captains came back from their science trip to a stalemate: the Vissian's chief engineer was threatening hostilities if their property, the Cogenitor, wasn't returned to them immediately and the MACO's and security personnel had been placed on a ship wide alert to defend against any conflict that might take place.   Captain Archer was livid that Trip had turned a successful peaceful first contact into a near open warzone.  How could an officer of his rank act so inappropriately and then think that Archer would approve and agree with what Trip had done?

A meeting was called between the parties involved: the Vissian Engineer, his wife and their Captain, and Enterprise's Captain Archer in the hope that some sort of middle ground could be found.  Captain Archer had taken back at first at how little they all regarded the rights that Charles had and what they viewed as her limited status onboard their ship, but he had to take this into context of how their society might be damaged if he agreed to Charles's asylum and also what action might result against them.  

In the end Captain Archer had taken advice from T'Pol, whose people had vast diplomatic and negotiating experience, and wrestling over the problem throughout the night, he'd approached Trip's quarters the following morning where Charles was staying, to inform her of his decision.  It wasn't easy informing both her and Trip that he had denied her request, but he saw no other way.  He'd had to consider the disastrous consequences that could have happened to the Vissian society back onboard their ship and their home planet, and any resulting retaliation on Enterprise and Earth.

The mood had been somber and quiet when he and T'Pol walked Charles back through the ship to be handed over to Captain of the Vissian ship, their chief engineer and his wife.   She had bid a quiet farewell to Trip, thanking him for his help which allowed her, just for a short time, to finally experience life.  Wiping a tear from his eye, Trip watched in silence as she turned away with an air of dignity and followed the Captain, back to the solitude of those four lonely, empty walls.  

A few hours later, Captain Archer had called for him to come to his ready room to inform him that the cogenitor had taken her own life.  The realization of what he'd done had hit him hard, as he turned and slowly walked back to his quarters.  He'd allowed her to experience a glimpse of a life she'd never even asked for, a life she could only have dreamed of, and certainly a life her culture would never, ever have allowed her to have.




I scanned through the other comments here, a very interesting conversation, but I have not been following teh Cogenitor thread mentioned here.  What struck me about your story, Hoshissis, is that you picked up nicely on how fast Charlie could learn to read.  Yes this ability must have startled Trip and he correctly saw the injustice of Charlie's situation within his culture.  This is one of Trip's strong points - he cares about people.  But this quick learner ability seems to me to be a dramatic device to finish the story in one episode.  Actually, I think they should have done something to show that weeks or months could have passed in the process of learning to read.  I say this because it seems unlikely to me that people who are so intelligent and learn so fast could be so repressive to one part of their population, holding them in what seems to be complete slavery.   Still, the episode set up an interesting problem in culture clash.  I had been hoping for a sequel episode, but it never came.   It will be interesting to see where you take your story.  


In North Star ARcher saw an injustice being done so he intervened. T"pol riased no ojections and went along with it. This is no different from what Trip did


I can't say that I am not in agreement with Thot, but, on the other hand, I can perfectly understand Hoshissis. A writer feels INEVITABLY the desire, I would dare to say the need, to shoot the reader, to stun him(which is not a bad thing).
Problem is that it isn't always easy to find the right dividing line between the necessity to write something capable of striking and the plausibility.
I am the first, who falls in this trap.
But the beginning of this story is intriguing. Only, if I may, I would like that you don't describe Trip as the usual self-accusing man. I think he deserves a bit of justice.
But, hey, this is your story, and you look very respectful of our personages.:D:p


"Your right A non interference policy isn't enforced and Archer has messed up enough himself before, but no one has died before due to direct interference like the Cogenitor."

Well, I have to counter two things to this: ;)

1) How many Tandaran guards got killed during the attack of the detention camp in 'Detained'? To believe that that with all these firefights not a single person was killed, seams quite ridiculous to me...

2) Archer attacked, I repeat ATTACKED the detention camp of the Tandarans! If this isn't an act of war, what else is it? But there are NO consequences for Archer, but Trip gets dressed down for spending time with the Cogenitor, showing her a movie, playing a round of Go, giving her a tour of the ship and teaching her how to read!?

I can fathom some possible alternatives:

- Head Quarters is mad about losing the opportunity with the Vissians and need Trip as punshing bag.

- HQ questions Trip's suitablity to join the mission

- Somebody in HQ wants to shaft Trip/Archer/Enterprise in a whole

- HQ decides to hold all of Enterprise accountable for their actions

But I simply can't see a reasonable cause why Trip should be court marshalled, because there is no rule he broke.

So if you start an court marshall with Trip concerning the incident then they have to acknowledge that these alligations are easily vaporized into thin air - as long as they don't start to apply double standards.

Well, I don't want to rule out, that Hoshissis could find a twist or add another fact of her own into the situation, which would really warrant a court marshall, but considering the facts known: There's no way, unless Starfleet comes up with double standards.

I would still enjoy your writing, but this potential 'plot hole' would still bother me.

Thot *still hopping that Hoshissis holds Archer accountable for the poor example he gave with his actions and therefore inspired Trip's actions*


Thanks for your comments Thot

" You gonna have to make up some reasons why Trip should be court marshalled, because a non interference policy isn't enforced by Starfleet until that point and to simply court marshall him based on the results of messing up the relationship with the Vissians is quite ridiculous considering the state of some relationships Archer has messed up himself: the Tandarans, the Klingons, the Eska."

Your right A non interference policy isn't enforced and Archer has messed up enough himself before, but no one has died before due to direct interference like the Cogenitor.  That I think is enough for "gross misconduct", which I think is a court marshall offense that Starfleet enforce.  After all, they did recall Enterprise after the Paragaan disaster in Shockwave, so I think if the offense if big enough, they will go over the Captain of the ships authority. 


Hey, guys and specially Hoshissis.

Well, I have to say: I appreciate, what kind of story you are trying to tell and I like your way of writing so far.

And here comes the Buts ;)

1) You simply can't court marshall Trip, because he didn't broke a single rule! The Prime Directive doesn't exist at the time of Enterprise. In addition he didn't disobeyed any orders given to him, since T'Pol only adivsed him to refrain from intervering, but there was no order.

The best thing you can find that T'Pol said to Trip in this episode is: "Captain Archer hopes to develop a productive relationship with this species. It might be best if you kept your opinions to yourself."
That's it! An advise, perhaps something she expects from him, but not an order, let alone a direct one!
And considering the fact, that Archer has never ever listen to T'Pol's advises to refrain from interfering into other cultures, why should Trip act differently?

2) I simply can't understand Archer's attitude to judge Trip in any way in this episode. Well I can fathom about his fury, because of the missed friendship with the Vissian captain, but Archer hits on him, as if he could judge him from any higher moral ground: people who live in glass houses shouldn't throw stones.

If you take the episode isolated for itself, then it's okay so far. But if you count in a few other stories before 'Cogenitor', you can't come around the conclusion, that Archer is acting like a hypocrite (I like Capt. Archer - that's why this episode makes me so furious)

You can pick quite some episodes, where Archer deliberately interferes in other cultures/affairs ('Fight or Flight', 'Marauders', 'Judgment') and put the lifes of his crew in jeopardy with his course of actions or provoked interstellar conflicts. But if you simply start to compare Trip's behavior in 'Cogenitor' with Archer's in 'Detained', you have to see the similarities:

Archer's case:

Did the Suliban asked for his help? No, not until he convinced them otherwise.

Did he acted openly towards the Tandarans or diplomaticly? Well, you could point out, that after being taken captive Archer and Travis weren't very amused, but after receiving the news, that they were picked up in a military zone, as a species unknown to the Tandarans, during a war against an enemy, who can disguise himself very good, they should have been a little bit more open to Colonel Grant considering the circumstances. But NO: Archer evades Grant's question about meeting the Cabal at first and later keeps silent for no reason, although he could simply give them the information.

Did others had to suffer negative effects because of Archer's act of interfering? Oh, yes: Look how Zobral in 'Desert Crossing' lured Archer and Trip down to the desert planet, because the 'famous ship Enterprise' is known for interfering in other cultures' business for a good cause and Trip gets nearly killed in the process.

Concerning Archer's accusation of Trip having 'Charles' blood at his hands: How many Tandaran guards got killed during the attack of the detention camp in 'Detained'? Did the Klingons in 'Marauder' simply stay away or isn't it far more likely, that they returned out of revenge and killed at least some of the workers, since the following time the workers don't have the back-up of Enterprise? Did Archer ever apologize for creating the scenario in 'Desert Crossing', which nearly killed Trip, in the first place?

And isn't Archer's refusal of asylum just as much cause of the cogenitor's death as Trip's part?

There is a very good phrase in 'Cogenitor', where Trip says to Archer: "I did exactly what you'd do. It's not like I had much choice." but Archer answers simply in disbelieve: "You did exactly what I'd do? If that's true, then I've done a pretty lousy job setting an example around here."

And that's the point where a good story concerning this episode should concentrate around: Archer's course of action inspired Trip's way. But the writers of the story simply turned it into a 'Trip hasn't listen clearly enough to Archer, because Archer has so much more thought about it and these cases are totally different ones, because the Vissian are nice people' thing ... I hope you can hear the sarcasm out of my words. :/

Any doubt about Archer is only adressed in a simple sentence and shrugged of as a disbelieved notion. In addition Archer accusation towards Trip like "We're out here to meet new species not tell them what to do" or towards the cogenitor like "It's not our place to tell you what rights you have." or Archer statement to Trip: "It's time you learn to weigh the possible repercussion of your actions." appear plainly ridiculous considering Archer course of actions in similar cases.

Once again: I like Archer and I don't like people who bash on Archer, but I simply can't blame them, if they "dislike" him (to use an understatement!).

Personally, I could live very good with this Archer in the season one and two, if the writers would simply acknowledge the ambivalence of Archer! But no, it doesn't happen: Are there any moments of reflection about negative consequences of his actions? Does he ever show regret for the negative effects of his actions like prompting Zobal indirectly to lure him down to the desert planet and get himself and Trip nearly killed, or like in the later episode 'Rajiin', where his interfering in a culture by 'stealing' a slave provided the Reptilians with all the necessary data to create a bio-weapon? Is there ever a scene, where Archer states something like 'I see how this has caused problems and in the next situation I will be more careful'?

The answer is always NO!

I mean: Archer attacked, I repeat ATTACKED, the Tandaran detention camp! This could be easily seen as an act of war! Or the fact that Archer has a bounty on his head from the Klingon Empire and at the same time still commands the flagship of Earth! If this isn't a constant provocation towards the Klingons and in addition a security risk, I don't know what else could be regarded as this (the episode 'Bounty')

To make myself clear: Some interferences by Archer were right from my point of view, but he simply can't start to judge other people, who take him as an example, and act as if his course of action would be different.

So my tips of improvement:

1) You gonna have to make up some reasons why Trip should be court marshalled, because a non interference policy isn't enforced by Starfleet until that point and to simply court marshall him based on the results of messing up the relationship with the Vissians is quite ridiculous considering the state of some relationships Archer has messed up himself: the Tandarans, the Klingons, the Eska.

Well, you could expand it to court marshall Archer as well, since he interfered quite enough by himself.

On the hand you could give it the twist, that Head Quarters believe that Trip is unsuitable for the position and want to reassign him. But do they have any facts to proceed with a court marshall? Definitly NO.

2) Please, please, please: Address Archer's bias accordingly and don't let it stand the way the writers left it like 'Trip is simply stupid and Archer knows best'. Please, don't turn it into a 'Trip has self-doubt and Archer/T'Pol has to save his sorry ass out of the mess he only brought himself into'-story.

Last but not least: I really like your way of writing and I hope that you will incorporate an attempt to solve this inbalance of the 'cogenitor' incident into your plot, because there are so many aspects you could adress in this whole area: How not giving a clear policy of non-interference prompts incidences like this; How Archer's example can rubb off on others; How T'Pol could finally prune Archer's attitude to dare to give himself the right to interfere in other cultures; How the reputation of Enterprise because of their interfering policy can have negative effects ('Desert Crossing' points at it, but doesn't really adress any consequences!)

With the best wishes,



Thanks Honeybee.

Silverbullet, yes I've read your take on Cogenitor and I really enjoyed it.  I've also glanced at the thoughtful insights into the Cogenitor thread and will be offering some of my thoughts soon.

Thanks everyone, I'm glad you enjoyed it.  There is a lot more to come.


Very interesting look at Trip's thought process. It's a tough episode, and I like how sympathetic you make him here.


I hope yo u read my take on Cogenitor and my  Post in the Cogenitor thread. There is a lot more to this episode.

Think the writers mishandled the thing badly.



You need to be logged in to the forum to leave a review!