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Kirk and McCoy accompany Spock to the Vulcan Academy Hospital, seeking experimental treatment for a badly wounded Enterprise crew member.
Spock's mother is also a patient in the hospital, and Kirk soon becomes involved in the complex drama of Spock's family...
Suddenly, patients are dying, and Kirk suspects the unthinkable—murder on Vulcan! But can he convince the Vulcans that something as illogical as murder is possible? Until the killer is caught, everyone is in danger!


The Enterprise is involved in a skirmish with the Klingons in disputed space, which leaves a crewmember, Remington, paralyzed. Spock reveals an experimental treatment that could save him, nerve regeneration, has recently been developed by Vulcan scientist Sorel and human doctor Daniel Corrigan. The treatment involves placing the patient in stasis and allowing the body to regenerate itself. Spock's mother Amanda is currently undergoing the procedure, which is how Spock is familiar with it.

Kirk, Spock and McCoy take Remington to Vulcan to undergo nerve regeneration treatment. Shortly after arriving on Vulcan, power failures deactivate the chambers containing Remington and Sorel's wife, T'Zan, killing them. Sorel nearly dies from the severing of the bond with his wife, but is saved by a healing mind meld performed by Corrigan and Sorel's children. Kirk realises the power failures were the result of deliberate sabotage and must be murder.

An attempt to track which computer was used to sabotage the stasis chambers is foiled when the memory banks overload, starting a fire. Spock, Kirk, and Sarek fight the flames that threaten Amanda's stasis chamber, receiving moderate burns in the process. The fire is eventually brought under control and Amanda's stasis remains intact.

Sorel's daughter, T'Mir, and Corrigan perform the Bonding ritual in a private moment only the two of them share. The next day, T'Mir's suitor, Sendet, goes mad with jealousy and attacks Corrigan, trying to sever the telepathic bond between the couple. His alibi for the murders is revealed to be false, and the Vulcan Healers force him to undergo a Verification ceremony. During the Verfication's group mind meld, it is discovered that Sendet is a member of a the Followers of T'Vet, a minority Vulcan group hoping to return Vulcan to its warlike past. The Healers in the meld discover he is not the murderer, however. Sendet and his associates are allowed to leave Vulcan for another planet.

The real murderer is Eleyna Miller, Sarek's assistant who has become obsessed with him and is trying to kill Amanda. She takes Kirk into the desert, supposedly for a romantic assignation, then pushes him from a low ledge and leaves him for dead. Kirk fights off a Le-matya with an injured leg, but survives until McCoy finds him. Eleyna then tries to kill Amanda by programming the stasis chamber to revive her too early. Amanda is saved by Spock and Sarek, who join her in a family mind meld to bring her body to full consciousness. Eleyna is taken into custody to undergo psychiatric treatment.



Pavel ChekovDaniel CorriganAmanda GraysonGroganJakorskiJames T. KirkLivingerJabilo M'BengaLeonard McCoyM'GuraEleyna MillerCarl RemingtonRosenSarekMontgomery ScottSendetSorelSotonSpockStevensStornHikaru SuluSurakT'MirT'ParT'PauT'SiaT'VetT'ZanWatsonZarn
Referenced only
William Shakespeare

Starships and vehicles[]

USS Enterprise (Constitution-class) • unnamed Klingon warship


the galaxy's Alpha or Beta Quadrants
Klingon warship battle site
Vulcan (Vulcan system, Vulcan sector, Beta Quadrant)
Llangon MountainsShiKahrShrine of T'VetT'KuhtVulcan Science Academy Hospital
Referenced only
BabelVerinius IV

Races and cultures[]




States and organizations[]

Followers of T'VetStarfleetUnited Federation of PlanetsVulcan Science AcademyVulcan Space Central
Referenced only
Masters of GolStarfleet Academy

Technology and weapons[]

photon torpedostarship

Materials and substances[]


Food and beverages[]

Andorian pizzabrandykasa juicekreylaRigellian wineTellarite linguini

Ranks and titles[]

captainchief engineerchief medical officercommandercommanding officerdoctorengineerFederation Starfleet ranksFederation Starfleet ranks (2260s)first officerhealerlieutenantlieutenant commanderhelmsmanmedical practitionernavigatorofficerscientistscience officersecond officerweapons officertactical officer

Other references[]

anatomyarmauditoriumauxiliary controlbeamingBonesbootbruisecapital citycityclothingcommand chairdegenerative xenosisdiseaseFederation membersfingerfive-year missiongermgovernmentHamlethearthomeworldhourion stormjumpsuitkahs-wanKolinahrkoon-ut-kal-if-feelanguagelife spanlifeformlogiclytherettemattermemorymind meldnation-stateorbitpantsplanetpopulationquadrantraces and culturesrankspacestarstar systemStarfleet uniformStarfleet uniform (2260s)technologytitletunicuniformuniversevirusweaponsickbaysonic showerstasisturboliftverificationviewscreen


stardate 3372.7, 2267 (nearly two years earlier)
Spock's last visit to Vulcan.
Enterprise engages the Klingon warship and proceeds to Vulcan.



  • "James T. Kirk could no longer count the number of planets he had visited in his lifetime of careening about the galaxy, but he knew of very few of any size of human population that did not have an Italian restaurant."
  • I know [Surak] is a personal hero to my friend Spock, the way Abraham Lincoln, from human history, is to me. –James T. Kirk
  • Your mother strongly opposed your being bonded in childhood. She was proved right. The old ways are not always the best ways, Spock, although they should not be rejected simply because they are old. When you are a father, you will understand how difficult it is to decide what is right for your children. You will make mistakes. Perhaps then you will be able to forgive mine. –Sarek to Spock

Related stories[]

  • The novel states that it was nearly two years since Spock had last visited Vulcan, as seen in TOS episode: "Amok Time". This episode is referenced several times throughout the book.


  • The IDIC Epidemic is a sequel to this novel.
  • Nyota Uhura does not appear in this novel.
  • On the novel's front cover, Spock is facing down a le'matya in the Vulcan desert. This scene does not appear in the novel.



published order
Previous novel:
The Tears of the Singers
TOS numbered novels Next novel:
Uhura's Song
chronological order
Previous Adventure:
To Reign in Hell: The Exile of Khan Noonien Singh
Chapters 12-13
Pocket Next Adventure:
The IDIC Epidemic
Previous Adventure:
Voyages of the
USS Enterprise (NCC-1701)
(2264 to 2270)
Next Adventure:
The IDIC Epidemic

German : Mord an der Vulkan-Akademie, translated by Andreas Brandhorst. (Heyne)
Portuguese : Crime em Vulcano, translated by Cláudia Freitas. (Editora Aleph)
French : Meurtres sur Vulcain, translated by Bruno Billion. (Fleuve Noir)

External link[]