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Two books in the so-called Star Trek Novel Verse. A collection of five inter-related stories that feature team-ups between each of the series' regular characters and a guest crew from the continuity. The name is taken from the DC comics series of the same name (which would also give its name to Batman the Brave And The Bold). The stories are linked through the device of Sealed Evil in a Can Malkus the Mighty, and the deadly artifacts created for him.
These books contain examples of:
- And I Must Scream: Malkus’ eventual fate is to be sealed inside his box as a disembodied mind, totally cut off from external stimuli while remaining conscious.
- Artifact of Doom: The four Malkus devices. One can be used to unleash a deadly disease, one is a Mind Control Device, the third is a giant Death Ray and the last controls the weather.
- Brainwashed and Crazy: The mind-controlled Klingons on Narendra III.
- Charm Person: Aidulac, and the females of the Peladons (a race into which this immortal character spread her genes), can influence most males into doing their bidding. Originally, anyone and everyone was affected, but over time the ability atrophied to affect only males.
- Continuity Nod: Many. As an example, when preparing to leave for a conference on Khitomer, Ambassador Worf is looking over the latest reports from around the Klingon Empire. Among the items awaiting his oversight is a progress report from Emperor Vall on taD, a Continuity Nod to the earlier novel Diplomatic Implausibility. Also, Word of God has stated that Commander Joseph Shabalala is the father of Anthony Shabalala, from the Starfleet Corps of Engineers series.
- Evil Overlord: Malkus, or at least he was 90,000 years ago, when he ruled the Zalkat Union for a millennium. He’d like to be the overlord again.
- Fantastic Fruits and Vegetables: Mmmm, clamdas.
- Imported Alien Phlebotinum: The Klingon mind-sifter (which always seemed more advanced than their usual quasi-medical technology) is believed to have been derived from Zalkatian artifacts left behind on worlds later colonized by Klingons.
- Incurable Cough of Death: Averted with the artifact that causes disease, as the disease pumps adrenaline into the infected's system until their heart fails from overwork.
- Heroic Sacrifice: Tereth; Commander Voyskunsky (off-screen).
- Legacy Vessel: Sun.
- Mind Control Device: One of the four artifacts.
- The Mole: Tuvok among the Maquis, in the Third Artifact story (which takes place just prior to the pilot of Star Trek Voyager). Elios Phifer is another example.
- Precursors: The Zalkat Union, which 90,000 years ago controlled a number of worlds in what are now the United Federation of Planets, Klingon Empire and Cardassian Union.
- Roaring Rampage of Revenge: Tharia ch’Ren ends up trying one of these, using one of the Malkus artifacts. He uses its weather control capabilities to wreck Cardassian and Federation colonies, first to avenge the deaths of his bondmates and then to get revenge on an informant who betrayed the Maquis.
- Sealed Evil in a Can: Malkus the Mighty, whose consciousness is contained within a box.
- Smart People Play Go: Robert DeSoto is presented as a champion-level player. He teaches his first officer to play...and regrets it, as she goes from a handicap to whooping his tail inside of a month.
- Weapon of Mass Destruction: Malkus liked these.
- When the Planets Align: One of the stories involves a Bajoran prophecy suggesting Bajor will be at peace when all the planet’s moons fully align. The bitter old terrorist Orta seeks to use the Malkus artifact he’s unearthed to artificially move a moon and fulfil the prophecy early. Of course, he doesn’t actually want peace - he’s just using the prophecy as a ploy to start a conflict with the Federation.
- You Have Outlived Your Usefulness: Malkus was fond of this, too, though it’s also a practical paranoia; why let those who had intimate knowledge of his capabilities (and helped design his superweapons) live?