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STO Chronology: 2256

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May

  • Stardate 1207.3 / May 11: Investigating a damaged satellite near a binary star system on the edge of Federation space, the crew members of the U.S.S. Shenzhou discover an object obscured from their sensors. After First Officer Michael Burnham volunteers to investigate the object, she finds an ancient, carved vessel. She is attacked by a Klingon, and when trying to escape, she accidentally kills him. A group of Klingons mourn the death of their Torchbearer, before the outcast Voq volunteers to take his place. The Klingons, led by T'Kuvma, reveal themselves in a cloakable ship. T'Kuvma preaches to his followers of the Federation's attempts to usurp the individuality of the Klingons and their culture, and plans to fulfill an ancient prophecy by uniting the 24 great Klingon houses as was once done by Kahless. Voq activates a beacon that summons the Klingon leaders. Burnham, desperate to prevent a war, attempts to fire on the Klingons first, against the wishes of Captain Philippa Georgiou. Burnham is arrested for mutiny. (DSC 01: "The Vulcan Hello") T'Kuvma convinces the majority of the Klingon leaders that he can lead them to victory over the Federation, as reinforcements for the Shenzhou arrive. Georgiou offers to resolve the situation peacefully, but the Klingons immediately open fire. Starfleet Admiral Anderson arrives and again offers peace to the Klingons, but his ship, the Europa, is rammed by another cloaked Klingon vessel. Anderson has his ship self-destruct, destroying the Klingon ship as well. Starfleet retreats, leaving the Klingons to collect their dead. In the remains of the Shenzhou, Burnham escapes her cell after encouragement from her guardian Sarek via a telepathic connection. She convinces Georgiou to try to take T'Kuvma prisoner, and they create a distraction by sending an explosive into his ship with a Klingon corpse. Boarding the vessel, Burnham overpowers Voq. Georgiou attempts to capture T'Kuvma, but is killed. T'Kuvma is fatally shot by Burnham, who is transported to safety. Voq promises that T'Kuvma's legacy will live on. Burnham is later sentenced to life in prison for her mutiny. (DSC 02: "Battle at the Binary Stars")

November

  • Burnham is on an unexpected prison transfer when an emergency occurs, and her shuttle is rescued by the U.S.S. Discovery. Spending several days on the ship, Burnham is ordered by its captain, Gabriel Lorca, to assist with a scientific assignment. Burnham overhears Lieutenant Paul Stamets, an astromycologist who is leading the assignment, discuss an upcoming experiment with a colleague serving on another starship; Lorca is soon informed of an incident on the Discovery's sister ship, the U.S.S. Glenn, that has killed the entire crew. Stamets leads a boarding party to investigate and finds the dead crew hideously twisted and malformed, as well as a group of Klingons killed by an unknown creature. Lorca later asks Burnham to work for him, despite her sentence, explaining that he organized the circumstances that led her to him so she could help develop a new spore-based propulsion system that could win the war she started by killing T'Kuvma. He also secretly has the creature transported aboard the Discovery. (DSC 03: "Context is for Kings")
  • Lorca assigns Burnham to study the creature from the Glenn, dubbed a Tardigrade, to find a way to use its biology as a weapon. Starfleet orders Discovery to the dilithium mining colony Corvan II, which is under Klingon attack. Stamets is reluctant to make such a long jump using the spores, and when the drive is activated the ship nearly collides with a star. Lorca sends Commander Landry to keep Burnham's research on track, and she attempts to sedate the Tardigrade (that she names Ripper) to cut off its claw; it kills her. Burnham believes that Ripper was acting in self-defense, and is drawn to the spores. Stamets and Burnham transport it to Engineering, where it connects to the spore drive and interfaces with the navigation system. The ship successfully makes the jump to Corvan II and saves the colony. On T'Kuvma's stranded ship, Klingon leader Kol earns the loyalty of T'Kuvma's desperate followers, and leaves Voq to die in the wreckage of the Shenzhou. L'Rell, secretly loyal to Voq, promises a way for them to win the war for the house of T'Kuvma. (DSC 04: "The Butcher's Knife Cares Not for the Lamb's Cry")

December

  • After a month of successful operations, Lorca is ordered to protect the spore drive until it can be replicated for other Starfleet ships. As he returns to the Discovery, Lorca is taken captive by the Klingons. Burnham has grown concerned with the toll that the drive has taken on Ripper. Along with Stamets' partner, medical officer Hugh Culber, Burnham convinces Stamets to find an alternative to run the drive. Lorca is imprisoned with captured Starfleet officer Ash Tyler and human criminal Harry Mudd, and in discussions Lorca reveals that he killed his entire crew during an earlier battle to spare them from the Klingons' torture, but escaped himself. Lorca is tortured by L'Rell, who wants the secret behind Discovery's new form of travel, but Lorca and Tyler escape before the Klingons learn anything. For the final jump needed to escape the Klingons, with Lorca and Tyler on-board, Stamets connects to the spore drive himself using Ripper's DNA. Later, Burnham frees Ripper. (DSC 05: "Choose Your Pain")
  • On his way to broker a peace deal with renegade Klingon houses, Sarek is injured when a "logic extremist" attempts to assassinate him. Burnham senses this, and Lorca agrees to rescue Sarek. Admiral Katrina Cornwell questions this decision and others that Lorca has been making. Burnham searches for Sarek in a shuttle with her roommate, Cadet Sylvia Tilly, and Tyler. Burnham attempts to connect with Sarek's mind, and finds him remembering the time that her application for the Vulcan Expeditionary Group was rejected. She learns that the VEG would only admit one of Sarek's children, and he chose Spock, his half-human son. Spock ultimately chose to join Starfleet, rendering Sarek's decision futile. Burnham helps him regain consciousness and activate a locator beacon. Lorca and Cornwell sleep together, but she is concerned by his paranoid behavior and plans to remove him from command of Discovery. With Sarek unable to meet the Klingons, Cornwell takes his place; however, the peace talks are actually a trap, and she is taken captive.(DSC 06: "Lethe")
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