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Going Native by Rap541 (PG)

Title: Going Native
Fandom: Battlestar Galactica (2004), Star Trek: The Next Generation (with references to Star Trek: The Original Series)
Pairing: gen, with Felix Gaeta/Anastasia "Dee" Dualla (and background/slight Lee Adama/OFC, Reginald Barclay/Racetrack, Saul Tigh/Lwaxana Troi)
Categories: AU, Crossover, Drama
Length: Super Epic (156,591 words)
Warnings: n/a

Author on LJ: rap541
Author Website: Rap541 (on FF.net)

Summary:
What do you do when you're a lost Starfleet officer in the Beta Quadrant? You blend in and hope for the best.

Review:
It's been ages since I visited either the The Next Generation or Battlestar Galactica fandoms, and the fic totally hits my id for both fandoms and for crossovers. The author fuses the two canons together cleverly, and includes elements of the Star Trek: Original Series episode "Who Mourns for Adonais?" to help reconcile the otherwise conflicting canons and their mythologies. I must admit to spotty familiarity with later seasons of BSG, but it seems to be a post-Season 3 AU.

Felix Gaeta, a member of Star Fleet, was transported via a freak wormhole (a la Farscape's John Crichton) to the Twelve Colonies a decade ago, and blended in to the society there for survival and to avoid breaking the Prime Directive. Deeply undercover, he'd given up on returning home when the events of the early seasons of Battlestar Galactica occur. Eventually, the fleet make it to Federation space, and Gaeta's varied loyalties and history are revealed.

What ensues is a long, engrossing tale focused primarily on Gaeta, but that also deals with the complexities of the Twelve Colonies survivors first contact with the Federation (through it's flagship, the Enterprise and her personnel), the culture clashes between them, and the stress and PTSD of the refugees, and bonus Romulans! Gaeta, in particular, is put through the wringer; the stress and guilt from canon events combined with his conflicting loyalties and years of living in fear of discovery all taking a toll, and the first contact situation requiring his continued input despite the need for a break. He also gets to see his (original character) family members for the first time in a decade, which is both joyful and stressful. Gaeta may be over-woobiefied and perhaps overpowered, but it worked for me within the parameters of the fic's fusion of canons and within the context of the plot.

Most everyone gets great character moments, with sections that show both crews perspectives of each other; I particularly liked Picard and Bill Adama's POV sections, which really gave great perspectives of the clash of cultures and on the other characters around them. My favorite character interactions of all may have been between Bill Adama and Worf, and Barclay and Kara Thrace. Many character are given a chance to shine, including Barclay and Lwaxana Troi, Dee, Lee, Bill Adama and President Laura Roslin, and Gaius Baltar. Complex interpersonal issues with the BSG characters are resolved, and the author took me from a place of complete frustration with Kara Thrace to really enjoying her character again. The Cylons, too, appear later in the fic, and some aspects of their culture and existence are resolved in a way that totally works for me (more so than in canon).

The various romances, though not central to the plot, were fun and sweet, especially between Gaeta and Dee and I got a real kick out of Ambassador Lwaxana Troi and Tigh as well.

I did have a hard time getting into the story in the first chapter or two since it starts in medias res; the author did add the earlier scenes of the initial meeting of the crews as a sort of epilogue, so if you prefer to start at the chronological beginning you can skip to Chapter 65 and read through to Chapter 67, and then go back the Chapter 1.

"They have our tactical officer." [Bill Adama] said it easily but sharply, sharply enough that [Laura Roslin] understood that he wasn't happy with her. She had expected that. It was unspoken that she didn't interfere with military matters, and she had. And in retrospect…

No, she told herself, it was the right thing to do. She could have insisted. The Starfleet captain, one Jean-Luc Picard, had looked conciliatory on the point but she had overridden Bill. Because she suspected that the Starfleet ship could outgun them easily. Because the Galactica was dead in the water until the FTL drive was back up. Because the people were sick and hungry and the Starfleet captain had offered food and medical supplies immediately and hadn't used possession of Felix Gaeta as a bargaining chip.

There were other reasons.

"I don't think we need to worry about Lt. Gaeta's loyalty," she said finally.

Adama looked at her intently. "Are you serious?" He stood up, and began to pace around his small quarters. " He never so much as blinked when we discussed Earth. He's known the whole time. You don't want to know how difficult it was for me to not beat him down when he said he was a Starfleet officer."


Going Native

[Note: there's also a pretty awesome sequel Going Forward that is sadly a WIP, last updated November 2011. Check it out if you like the Going Native'verse and don't mind reading unfinished fic, but the first story can stand on it's own. The fic is strongly rooted in Trek'verse events--the Dominion War--shown in Star Trek: Deep Space Nine.]

[ETA: to fix ~many~ spelling errors and add in a few forgotten details, such as a mention of the Cylons]

Comments

( 6 comments — Leave a comment )
acadine11
Apr. 11th, 2013 07:30 am (UTC)
This sounds really interesting! I'm curious, though: how accessible is it to readers who aren't familiar with ST:TNG? I'm familiar with the general Star Trek universe (seen the movies and selected episodes from the original series, and read fic for the reboot series); would that be sufficient to get by?
jenna_marianne
Apr. 11th, 2013 02:18 pm (UTC)
Hmm, it's hard for me to tell, since I know TNG backwards and forwards and it's BSG I'm less familiar with. Since characters from both canons have sections giving outsider POV-style reflections on the other canon's characters, it might be more accessible than another crossover would be, and many of the TNG characters are introduced to the BSG characters as they enter the story.

You could probably look at a general wiki page to get an overview & pics of the TNG command crew and be safe, but here's a quickie overview of the characters involved in the story:
Command Crew in no particular order
*Jean-Luc Picard - Captain, played by Patrick Stewart
*Will Riker - Second in Command, tall beardy guy
*Deanna Troi - Cousellor, half-Betazoid empath, has a lot of scenes with Gaeta in the early parts of the story
*Beverley Crusher - the Doctor, I love her, she doesn't get too much play in the story
*Geordi LaForge - the Chief engineer, blind and has a metal visor that helps him see, played by LeVar Burton <3
-Lt. Worf - Chief tactical officer/security guy, Klingon
-Data - third in command, android (sort of white/yellow skin), he totally freaks the Colonials out with his roboty-ness though it's not a huge plot point
with additional appearances by
*Troi's mom, Lwaxana - a Betazoid [telepath] ambassador played by Majel Barret, who was Nurse Chapel in TOS. She had about 1 episode a season on TNG. She has a big, over-the-top personality that didn't always mesh well with the rest of the characters, flirting with Picard, etc
*Reginald Barclay - nerdy and socially awkward engineering-type character that appeared in ~5 episodes played by the guy who was the helicopter pilot in TV A-Team
*Guinan - wise alien bartender played by Whoopi Goldberg, was a re-occuring character in the series. Found of extremely large hats.

I think you'd be safe from there, other than knowing that the tech is a bit different/"advanced" from TOS; this is mostly in the form of "replicators" that are installed in quarters that you can order food/drink from and "industrial replicators" that can create larger items like clothes, emergency supplies, etc.

For some pictures of the cast, there's a couple here:
http://en.memory-alpha.org/wiki/Star_Trek:_The_Next_Generation
I'd focus on the last, season 5 pic since the fic seems to be set in the later seasons. The goofy looking kid in the first two pictures (Wesley Crusher, Dr. Crusher's son) doesn't appear in "Going Native" unless my memory is blanking, the woman with the blond hair in yellow (Tasha Yar) was written off the show before the events in the fic, and the older lady in blue (Katherine Pulaski) in the second pic was a temporary replacement doctor and also doesn't appear in the fic.

[ETA to fix some typos and add links to Trek wiki pages, so you can see pics & write-ups of the characters]

Edited at 2013-04-11 02:35 pm (UTC)
acadine11
Apr. 11th, 2013 04:41 pm (UTC)
Oh wow, thank you! That's amazing and very helpful :) :)
jenna_marianne
Apr. 11th, 2013 05:54 pm (UTC)
Welcome! (can you tell I'm a giant Trekkie?)

Oh, I forgot to mention the holodeck. That's probably the only other advanced Trek tech that appears in this fic and not in TOS. It's basically a room (black with an orange grid until activated) that can project life-like hologram environments that characters can interact with (see, touch, travel through). It was used occasionally in TNG to allow characters to have adventures without actually leaving the ship, in "holonovels" or recreational activities like skiing or going to the beach.

Otherwise, the tech is the familiar transporters, shuttles/runabouts (larger more posh shuttles), phasers + photon torpedoes, shields, etc you'd also see in TOS.
captainlaura
Apr. 11th, 2013 03:40 pm (UTC)
Dude, this was amazing. I literally stayed up all night to finish it, so thanks/curses for that.
jenna_marianne
Apr. 11th, 2013 05:43 pm (UTC)
Welcome/condolences! I've been there, love a good fic that just sucks you in, and this one did that for me, too.
( 6 comments — Leave a comment )

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