Publisher's descriptionEdit

The fearsome progeny of forbidden technology, the Genesis Wave swept across the Alpha Quadrant, creating new life at the expense of everything that lay in its path. Only through the valiant efforts of Captain Picard and his crew was the Wave halted, and the cataclysmic threat to the Federation averted. Or so it seemed.

In the harrowing aftermath of the crisis, the Genesis Device falls into the hands of a dangerous religious zealot. But that disaster may pale beside an even more dire emergency, as Data develops a disturbing theory regarding the full cosmic consequences of the Genesis Effect: Can life truly be created from nothing, or must the entire galaxy pay a terrible price for what Genesis has wrought?


On Torga IV, a moss creature who has infiltrated humanoid society flees Romulan forces with her portable Genesis device. She assumes the form of Kai Opaka and entrusts the device (contained within a sealed box) to Ranjen Yorka, then dies. Yorka believes the box to contain a great gift from Opaka’s spirit, and he replicates a duplicate, but he senses danger and does not open the box until he reaches the privacy of Meldrar I. With several acolytes, shuttle pilot Cassie Jackson, and Ferengi trader Chellac, he examines and activates the device. It genesizes the immediate area and Yorka mistakes it for the Orb of Life. He and Chellac invite select representatives of Bajoran society—including Vedek Zane, General Mira, Minister Gatrick, and a Vulcan proxy of Maquis leader Bakkus—to bid on the device. The Vulcan offers latinum, and the new allies plan a raid on the Romulans to gather more intelligence on the device and its abilities. In truth, the Vulcan is a Romulan inventor and dissident named Regimol who is now an operative for Admiral Nechayev. Yorka and Cassie panic and flee, agreeing to split any profits equally, while Regimol and Chellac steal a runabout and capture two Romulan officers before making their own escape.

The Enterprise is engaged in the search and rescue of starships that had been disabled by the Genesis Wave. On the adrift U.S.S. Barcelona, they find several weak life-signs, though most of those are hostile Genesis creatures. Only one survivor is rescued: a comatose Antosian named Raynr Sleven. He later recovers through a treatment of cellular metamorphosis that also imbues him with shape-shifting abilities. Alyssa Ogawa and her daughter, Suzi, fear for their husband/father, who is missing after the Genesis Wave incident. The Enterprise is intercepted by a Romulan fleet led by Commander Kaleena of the I.R.W. Javlek, who demands that Starfleet turn over all of their Brahms interphase suits (which illegally use Romulan technology). The Romulans also board the Barcelona, but Picard rescues the soldiers before they can be killed by the monsters there. Soon after, the Barcelona and a Romulan troop ship are destroyed by a strange rift that appears out of nowhere. Similar rifts appear throughout known space, and massive tentacled beings emerge and attack anything nearby. Working closely with Kaleena (actually an Elasian agent working for the Romulans), Picard falls under the spell of her tears.

Feeling remorse over her mishandling of the Genesis Wave affair, Admiral Nechayev resigns from the admiralty and takes command of the U.S.S. Sequoia. Her mission is to liberate and question the humanoids held in stasis by the moss creatures on Lomar. They meet with little success (as the hosts are entirely dependent on the moss) until mind-meld expert Teska is able to communicate with one captive, discovering that the victims lived in a dream reality in which they unknowingly developed elements of the Genesis technology. Teska also learns of (Yorka’s) Genesis device on Torna IV. Regimol delivers his captives to Nechayev, who tricks the men into sharing their intelligence: four warbirds, including the Javlek, each took a portable Genesis device from Lomar. She also feeds misinformation to the Romulan Command that Starfleet is in possession of the fifth device. Teska melds with one of the captives, Jaret, hoping to learn the fate of her husband, Hasmek, a Romulan dissident. She learns that he was executed for his dissent by Jaret himself, though she later forgives him, and Jaret settles on a Federation colony.

Regimol learns that Yorka has replicated more copies of the “Orb of Life” and that he plans to activate them in “the graveyard of our allies”—discovered to be Solossos III. Upon hearing (Nechayev’s rumor) that Starfleet has the fifth device, Kaleena expels Picard from her bedchamber with orders that he retrieve and deliver it to her. He sets off alone in his yacht. Nechayev rendezvouses with the Enterprise and realizes that Kaleena is an impostor, having dealt with the real Kaleena personally. She also deduces that Picard is under the Elasian’s influence and sets up a plot to infiltrate the Javlek. Sleven (posing as Picard), Regimol, and Teska (posing as Regimol’s captive Romulan officers) transport to the warbird and steal their Genesis device, only narrowly escaping. When the Javlek fires on the starships, they are forced to destroy it, killing both the real and impostor Kaleenas and everyone else aboard. Though light-years away, Picard feels “Kaleena’s” death and is freed from her influence.

Troi explores the rift, realizing that Genesis is destroying the other realm, but that the native life-forms cannot survive in our reality either. La Forge and Data formulate a method of disarming the captured Genesis device. On Solossos III, Picard infiltrates Yorka’s group, though he is discovered and a firefight erupts, damaging their habitat and exposing everyone inside (who is not wearing a containment suit) to the planet’s toxic atmosphere. Yorka, Cassie, and many of their cohorts die. With Chellac’s help, Picard destroys the network of Genesis devices, and a wave of tranquility washes across all of known space, temporarily ending all fighting everywhere.  



ChellacBeverly CrusherDataGatrykGeordi La ForgeMiraAlynna NechayevOcman DanrivAlyssa OgawaOpakaJean-Luc PicardSuzi PowellWilliam RikerRaynr SlevenDeanna TroiYorkaZain
Referenced only 
Garth of IzarWinn Adami


Meldrar ITorga IVValley of EverlastingVulcan
Referenced only 
Cave of WindsDeep Space 9RomulusVorta Vor

Starships and vehiclesEdit

BaltrunUSS Barcelona (Steamrunner-class) • BateretDanube-class runaboutUSS Enterprise-E (Sovereign-class) • HarveyIRW Javlek (D'deridex-class) • Petrask (D'deridex-class) • USS Sequoia (Galaxy-class)
Referenced only 
USS Tempest

Races and culturesEdit

Referenced only 

States and organizationsEdit

Legion of AssassinsStarfleetUnited Federation of PlanetsVedek Assembly

Science and technologyEdit

cellular metamorphosisGenesis WaveOrb of Lifestarship

Ranks and titlesEdit


Other referencesEdit

cormalineDescent of the PahwraithsDominion WarOde to the ProphetsplanetRoll of HonorShabren's Fifth ProphecyThe Soul of Gratitudetechnology


Alynna Nechayev is born.


Related storiesEdit


Published Order
Previous novel:
The Genesis Wave, Book 2
TNG novels
The Genesis Wave
Next novel:
Genesis Force
Previous novel:
The Genesis Wave, Book 2
TNG hardcover novels Next novel:
Genesis Force
Previous story:
The Genesis Wave, Book 2
Stories by:
John Vornholt
Next story:
Star Trek Nemesis
Young adult novelization
Chronological Order
Previous adventure:
Unimatrix Zero
Pocket Books Timeline Next adventure:
Exercises in Futility
Previous adventure:
Unimatrix Zero
Memory Beta Chronology Next adventure:
Exercises in Futility

External linksEdit

Community content is available under CC-BY-SA unless otherwise noted.