Lieutenant Commander Tom Brooks, Ph.D.

Lieutenant Commander Tom Brooks, Ph.D., currently serves as the Team Lead of the Intelligence Support Activity’s Temporal & Exotic Sciences Team. A scientist with a deep appreciation for the weird and wacky, Brooks is an unconventional pick for an intelligence operation. He was selected based not on his field aptitude but rather his unique background in theoretical physics, including academic appointments at the Daystrom Institute, the Vulcan Science Academy and the Manheim Research Facility.

History

Thomas Duncan Brooks was born July 14, 2346, to Dr. Duncan Brooks, Ph.D., a interstellar relations advisor to the Federation Council, and the Honorable Genevieve Brooks, a magistrate for Federation Judicial Affairs. The youngest of three siblings, and the only boy among them, he lived a privileged but relatively sheltered early life on the family estate in Edinburgh.

When not attending private school or equestrian lessons, young Tom found himself alone more often than not, his parents consumed with work and his sisters off doing their own things. To entertain himself, he tinkered and read. At first, Tom built strange contraptions and read about the mysteries of the Universe. His parents, a political scientist and a judge by training, supported his interest, although they understood little about quantum peturbations and retrocausality, while his older sisters found their baby brother quirky and amusing. By prep school, his petty attempts to entertain himself had blossomed into a deep interest in exotic physics and the unknown hidden amongst the stars. He had dreams of making grandiose discoveries out in the great beyond, and he had the drive and intellect to make it happen – starting, of course, with top marks in school and an acceptance to Starfleet Academy.

In 2364, Tom was accepted into Starfleet Academy, where he flung himself headlong into the sciences. Finally, he figured, he had the keys to unlock the mysteries of the Universe – or so he thought until they put a backpack on his back and made him run laps. With each foot fall on the track, he was crunching numbers and calculating tensors. His science instructors found him exceptionally bright, deeply passionate, and a real treat, but other subject area instructors had a different impression, viewing Tom as distracted and absent-minded. The social aspect of the Academy didn’t sit well with Tom either. Having spent most of his time at the estate alone with his books and inventions, he found the dynamics of friendship building and dating far stranger than making sense of temporal mechanics. Indeed, when he graduated the Academy, he had already developed a new class of transformation matrices for the temporal waveform equation at the center of quantum chronodynamics, but he’d made only a handful of friends in the science lab and hadn’t had a single girlfriend that lasted more than a week.

Considered by his instructors as a weak candidate for starship operations, but one of the most capable scientific minds they’d seen in recent years, while his peers set off for commissions on Starfleet vessels, Ensign Brooks was instead offered a fellowship at the Daystrom Institute of Technology on Mars. There, he found himself among people he could truly connect with. He dove into the strange and obscure, working as a graduate researcher on topics such as transwarp field theory, temporal phase discriminators and ekpyrotic universe cosmology. As he travelled to conferences and presented papers, Tom began emerging from his shell. Urged on by research successes, even heralded as the “Breakout Scientist of the Year” by one pop-sci journal and “Hot Eligible Science Bachelor” by another, his demeanor transformed from quiet introvert into sociable whiz kid.

His successes at Daystrom did more than just make him a young science celebrity. They also attracted the attention of the Vulcan Science Academy, which, in 2374, offered him a grant for doctoral research in their seminal lab on quantum chronodynamics. Where Daystrom was his emergent experience, dabbling in many areas of exotic science and letting him break out of his shell, the Vulcan Science Academy was a sharpening stone that honed him into an interstellar-class researcher. Working with the leading researchers on time travel, he studied not just the physics of time travel but also the philosophy of it. He learned about the temporal cold war, worked on devices specially designed to detect temporal incursions, and even visited the Guardian of Forever with the rare permission of the mysterious Department of Temporal Investigations. A far cry from what now seemed like such mundane transformation matrices of the temporal waveform equation he’d developed at Starfleet Academy, and drawing upon a now-decade of study in exotic physics, he culminated his doctoral work with a dissertation on probabilistically compacting the non-closed subspace resulting from the inequivalent topologies of the infinite-dimensional vector space generated by the temporal waveform.

Tom’s public defense had few attendees, mostly just people his committee and some folks from his lab. However, one mysterious guy showed up, sat in the back of the room, and said nothing the entire time. But he came to the reception afterwards, chatted with a couple of the older Vulcan professors he seemed to know personally and then, as things wound down, he approached Tom with a job offer: build a chronometric processor capable of doing the probabilistic compaction he’d just successfully defended. Where? The Manheim Temporal Research Facility. The now-Dr. Brooks accepted on the spot, excited at the prospect of not just describing time but actually playing with it – or so he thought. At first, he dove into Manheim headlong, emboldened by a near-infinite budget and a staff at his beck and call. In two years, he succeeded building the machine he’d hypothesized. It was a powerful weapon in the arsenal of the folks who fought on the front lines against temporal incursions. Again and again, they used it to detect variances of what should have been spacetime invariants and react accordingly. But the key there was “react”. Brooks hypothesized that he could go further, and, as is the downfall of many inquisitive inventors, he started trying to use it to detect alterations in the time stream before they occurred. And that’s when the problems began. Several personnel in strange uniforms showed up on the station. No records existed on them in Starfleet databases, and yet everyone in the command staff seemed to defer to them. They question him and then they left. A day later, Brooks was given his marching orders: he was being reassigned immediately for violations of the Temporal Prime Directive that had not yet occurred.

Brooks was furious. His machines were taken, he was sworn to secrecy, and then he was transferred as Assistant Chief Science Officer on the USS Discovery, a vessel researching the gravitational anomalies of Sector 04-70, commonly known as the Badlands. He found the work nothing more than child’s play, and the officers as little more than pop-sci wannabes. It didn’t stop the crew from admiring him as some sort of science celebrity, and their overbearing friendliness and effusive inquisitiveness eventually wore on him. He actually had some fun on the vessel, although far more preaching wacky scientific theory in the mess hall than actually doing the real research in the lab. The latter never really offered him much satisfaction. He had successes but none of them seemed remarkable to him, and thus, after three years on the Discovery, he eventually submitted for a transfer.

In seeking out a new position, Brooks hoped for something time-related, but he got no bites. It was as though he’d been blacklisted from the entire discipline. But he did get numerous other offers, and finally settled on one with Starfleet R&D as a transwarp field theorist. An avid fan of Leah Brahms’ work on higher order warp field theory, he worked on several attempts to build transwarp gateways. All failed miserably. Many of his peers attributed this to limits in Alcubierre metric, but Brooks refused to believe the Lorentzian manifold simply broke down arbitrarily. He instead pinned the failings on his peers, who were hardly more capable than the crew of the Discovery, and the funding, which was pennies in comparison to what he’d had on Manheim.

During a moment of frustration, fresh off a new failing of a transwarp attempt that led to the loss of the lives of four Starfleet test pilots, Lieutenant Brooks finally caught a break when a communication arrived from a mysterious office called the “Fleet Specialized Support Activities” that invited him to join a new activity they were organizing, the Intelligence Support Activity, where he’d lead a Temporal & Exotic Sciences Team. When he inquired further, reading the dossier of his prospective team and hearing from its Commanding Officer just how much free reign they’d have, he accepted in a heartbeat.

Service Record

Start End Rank Role Assignment
2388
Lieutenant Commander
SCITECH EXOSCI Team Lead
Warp and Propulsion Specialist
USS Bellona
23842388
Lieutenant
Transwarp Field TheoristStarfleet R&D
23832384
Lieutenant
Assistant Chief Science OfficerUSS Discovery
23812383
Lieutenant Junior Grade
Assistant Chief Science OfficerUSS Discovery
23782381
Lieutenant Junior Grade
Post-Doctoral FellowManheim Temporal Research Facility
23742378
Doctoral CandidateVulcan Science Academy
23682374
Ensign
Research FellowDaystrom Institute
23672368
Cadet Senior Grade
Cadet - Year 4Starfleet Academy
23662367
Cadet Junior Grade
Cadet - Year 3Starfleet Academy
23652366
Cadet Sophomore Grade
Cadet - Year 2Starfleet Academy
23642365
Cadet Freshman Grade
Cadet - Year 1Starfleet Academy