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For the mirror universe counterpart, see Taran'atar (mirror).

Taran'atar was a Jem'Hadar who lived in the latter half of the 24th century. By the 2370s, he had a long and distinguished service record and was considered an Honored Elder. In 2376, Taran'atar was chosen by Odo, thanks to his lack of dependency on ketracel-white, to be sent to the Alpha Quadrant as an observer aboard Deep Space 9, to learn more about the cultures on the other side of the Bajoran wormhole.


Early life

Taran'atar was grown in a Jem'Hadar hatchery in the Gamma Quadrant in the year 2354. He was given his name by Mokata'klan, the Jem'Hadar First who led the unit in Taran'atar's first battle. The Vorta who commanded this unit was Eris. (DS9 novel: Warpath)

Like all Jem'Hadar, Taran'atar was genetically "programmed" to worship the shape-shifting Founders as gods. Unlike most other Jem'Hadar, Taran'atar never had the physiological dependency on the drug ketracel white that the Founders program into their soldiers.

Taran'atar faithfully served his Founders and their Dominion for 22 years, earning the status of Honored Elder. During this time, he participated in battles with the V'Xaji and the Trelians. (DS9 novels: Abyss, Unity)

During the Dominion's war with the powers of the Alpha Quadrant, Taran'atar's duties kept him within the Gamma Quadrant borders of the Dominion, and he never saw action against Federation or allied troops. (DS9 novel: Avatar, Book Two)

Deep Space 9


Taran'atar in 2376

In early 2376, Taran'atar came to the attention of the Founder named Odo when Odo was seeking out Jem'Hadar who were not addicted to the White for an assignment as an observer of Alpha Quadrant species and behavior on starbase Deep Space 9.

In April of 2376, Odo recorded a message for Colonel Kira Nerys confirming Taran'atar's assignment, and sent him on his way.

Word of Taran'atar's assignment came to a renegade Jem'Hadar warrior named Kitana'klan, who hoped to start a new war with the Alpha Quadrant. Kitana'klan's vessel arrived at DS9 before Taran'atar's, and he ordered his vessel to attack the station and the USS Aldebaran.

Taran'atar's vessel arrived during the battle, and turned the tide. Although his own vessel was destroyed, Taran'atar managed to beam to the station where he tracked down and eliminated Kitana'klan and several members of his crew that had beamed to the station in hope of destroying it from within.

After helping save the station and hearing the message from Odo, Colonel Kira allowed Taran'atar to stay and complete his assignment from Odo. (DS9 novels: Avatar, Book One, Avatar, Book Two)

Soon after, Taran'atar traveled to the world of Sindorin with Dr. Julian Bashir, and Lieutenants Ezri Dax and Ro Laren to stop the plans of Dr. Ethan Locken, who was utilizing an abandoned Jem'Hadar hatchery to design his own breed of Jem'Hadar soldiers that would be loyal only to him. The experience was a something of a spiritual awakening for him; the Jem'Hadar loyal to Locken knew nothing of the Founders, believing the Doctor to be their creator. When questioned if the Founders are immortal, he responds no, and the First insists that the Founders are not as godlike as Taran'atar makes it sound. After returning to Deep Space 9, Taran'atar asked Kira how she keeps her faith so strong, and does not doubt, and finds spirituality to be paradoxical. (DS9 novel: Abyss)

In May, during the Gateways Crisis, Taran'atar traveled through an Iconian Gateway with Colonel Kira to the Delta Quadrant, where he battled a Hirogen Alpha onboard a Malon freighter. (DS9 - Gateways novel: Demons of Air and Darkness)

In June, Taran'atar earned the nickname Alligator from a human boy when the Jem'Hadar accidentally unshrouded while observing in a classroom. (DS9 - Mission Gamma novel: Twilight)

In August, after the assassination of Bajoran First Minister Shakaar Edon on the station's promenade, Taran'atar assisted Lieutenant Ro in tracking down the assassin. (DS9 novel: Lesser Evil)

In December, Taran'atar visited the Female Changeling during her confinement at the Ananke Alpha prison. Soon afterwards, seemingly overwhelmed by the conflicts brought on by his assignment from Odo, Taran'atar brutally attacked Captain Kira and Lieutenant Ro before fleeing the station. (DS9 novel: The Dominion: Olympus Descending)



Fleeing the station, Taran'atar hi-jacked the runabout USS Euphrates and kidnapped Ensign Prynn Tenmei. Upon discovering this, Commander Elias Vaughn pursued the ship in the USS Defiant.

Back on the station, Lieutenant Nog and Major Cenn Desca discovered evidence that implicated Intendant Kira Nerys of the mirror universe in "brainwashing" Taran'atar to do her bidding.

Taran'atar traveled to the world of Harkoum, where he was confronted by Vaughn before being beamed to the mirror universe by Intendant Kira.

Shortly after arriving on the Intendant's ship, another "Kira" arrived on the scene, which the Intendant mistook to be the Kira Nerys of the regular universe. The Intendant never realized her mistake as the new-comer savagely slit her throat.

The new-comer was actually the Cardassian woman named Iliana Ghemor, who had been surgically altered years previously to look like Kira, and had recently been able to manipulate Taran'atar as well. Ghemor then began impersonating the Intendant in the mirror universe with Taran'atar acting as her unwilling slave. (DS9 novel: Warpath)

Taran'atar was later rescued from Ghemor and returned to the primary universe. Deeply troubled by his actions, he left a note for Ro Laren apologizing for attacking her before leaving the station in an old Bajoran ship. Passing through the wormhole, he set a course for the Dominion fully expecting to be executed upon his return. Encountering a distress call from the Even Odds, he changed course to investigate. (DS9 novel: The Soul Key)

Taran'atar soon discovered that the Even Odds had been attacked by an Ascendant. (DS9 novel: Sacraments of Fire)

Later life

Taran'atar had not returned to Deep Space 9 as of 2382 and had become an outcast from Jem'Hadar society. Starfleet Command had designated Taran'atar a persona non grata in the Federation. (ST - Typhon Pact novel: Zero Sum Game)

As of 2385, Ro Laren and many other members of Deep Space 9's staff considered him dead. However, in fact it appears that the aged Jem'Hadar is still alive - as Kira Nerys, newly emergent from the wormhole in August that year, encountered him on the Even Odds. (ST - The Fall novel: Revelation and Dust)

Later, Taran’atar personally revealed himself to Ro Laren, and explained that he and many of the Ascendants had been transformed into noncorporeal entities by the explosion of Iliana Ghemor's metaweapon, though Iliana herself had not survived. He further explained that he and the Ascendants were bound together in a Link that would serve the will of the Prophets. Their link became the "planet" within the wormhole that Ben Sisko landed on when he first entered it. Taran'atar said they had always been as they are and always will be. Even though they just entered the wormhole by normal time standards, the Prophets are nonlinear, and now, so is this new Link planet. Ro wished him well, and before she departed the wormhole, he told Ro that he was fulfilled, having found a new purpose in life. (DS9 novel: Ascendance)

Alternate versions

In an alternate timeline, Taran'atar was one of the senior Jem'Hadar soldiers in an invasion of the Alpha Quadrant. Taran'atar was killed when his ship rammed into Starbase 375. (ST - Echoes and Refractions novel: A Gutted World)

When Elias Vaughn was having his second orb experience he became Eli Underwood, a patient at the same insane asylum as Benny Russell. While there he interacted with a young man named Terrence, the representation of Taran'atar in that reality. (DS9 novel: Unity)


Background information

  • Jeffrey Lang commented on Taran'atar's inclusion in Abyss: "My contributions to the story were plot details and the character bits. In particular, I'm pleased with the characterization of Taran'atar. He was pretty much a tabula rasa when I got him and it was fun to try to figure out what made him tick". (Voyages of Imagination)
  • David Mack commented on Taran'atar's arc leading into and in Warpath: "When Marco and I first discussed what had driven Taran'atar to his violent rampage at the end of Olympus Descending, Marco had already planted the seeds for the mind-control storyline. 'Think of the Manchurian Candidate,' he'd told me when I first started planning the story. At first, I was worried that depriving Taran'atar of free will might undermine his character, but then Marco pointed out that, supposedly, the Jem'Hadar don't have the luxury of free will to begin with. They're slaves of the Founders, bound to their will, genetically designed to accept the Founders' absolute divine authority. It would actually have been a betrayal of character to let him simply defy their will because of stress; instead, by placing him in thrall to a new 'god', he gets a new perspective on the life he has lived; he is forced to see that being enslaved by the new god is not all that different from being controlled by the Founders. His breakthrough moment in Warpath isn't about him breaking free of the will of others, but rather just being able to admit that he is a slave. That bit of self-knowledge is just the first step on his road to personal growth, though where that road might lead at this point is extremely uncertain". (Voyages of Imagination)

A promotional image of Taran'atar.





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