Welcome back to another installment of Tuesdays at Quark’s! We continue our exploration of the Beta Quadrant this week with a character from Xindi, a major plot point and enemy in Star Trek: Enterprise. This character, though, is written for the Next Generation era and explores what’s become of the Xindi.
The Beta Quadrant Sourcebook introduces the four surviving Xindi species (poor Avians) but only discusses the species’ fate since Star Trek: Enterprise obliquely. There is no discussion of the Xindi in the chapters on the Federation, but the species write-ups say that they joined the Federation in 2311 (a date they got from the reference book Star Trek: Federation – The First 150 Years). Why so late though? That’s nearly 200 years since they made contact with the Federation. Sure, there would probably be some lasting hostility but after a century surely all of those actually involved in the war would be dead.
My interpretation is that the Xindi were divided and couldn’t make up their minds. A large faction argued for protectionism and isolationism and so the Xindi colonies remained allies of the Federation for centuries but preferred not to have visitors. Eventually the expansionists won out, though, and they joined in full and have rapidly increased their standard of living as a result.
This puts them in a unique position, have one of the longest associations with Starfleet but one of the shortest participations, and Captain Heyta plays that up. She is a bold and (at times) reckless captain like Lakin Viromm but she also has a personal legacy at Starfleet that protects her from serious fall out. She has many histories of lessons on her side and she sees some things about the growing hostilities with the Dominion very clearly. At the same time she’s clouded by her personal baggage and will surely butt heads with those pursuing a more peaceful course like Admiral Nechayev.
There are lots of plot hooks mentioned in her background, but here are a few to get you started.
- The characters’ ship is assigned to a joint mission with the U.S.S. Archer along the Cardassian border. While investigating a rogue system, they find a colony of Xindi-Reptilians within the borders of the Demilitarized Zone. When the colonists refuse to leave, Heyta starts sending down armed away teams to forcibly remove them. She contends that the Reptilians will only respond to firm measures, but the move is escalating the situation quickly.
- When a Dominion envoy visits Starbase 211 near Betazed, both the characters’ ship and the U.S.S. Archer are at the base for routine repairs. They find themselves pressed into service as investigators when a runabout mysteriously disappears en route to the starbase. Captain Heyta shares her personal store of intelligence on the Dominion to help find out what happened.
- Long range sensors pick up a distress signal from the U.S.S. Archer, running on emergency power in a system near Cardassian space. When the characters’ ship arrives they find that Captain Heyta has worked out a solution with her crew to relay blown systems through the ship’s deflector array. The only problem is that this has created a feedback loop that is drawing a Crystalline Entity to the area where it will likely begin feeding on nearby colonies.