Tarsus IV

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Tarsus IV is a planet mentioned in the Star Trek: The Original Series episode "The Conscience of the King".

"In 2246, Kirk was living on the planet Tarsus IV during a food crisis that was starving the colony of eight thousand people. Governor Kodos, sympathetic to old eugenics philosophies, tried to save a portion of his colony by killing the four thousand colonists he deemed least desirable or able to survive. Kodos was unaware of the imminent arrival of relief ships. The thirteen-year-old Jim Kirk was one of only nine eyewitnesses to the massacre." [1]

Canonical and Semi Canonical Events Related to Tarsus

  • According to the Star Trek Into Darkness App, John Harrison is one of nine survivors from a 2246 attack on Tarsus IV.[2] According to the movie, however, John Harrison is only an identity fabricated by Khan.
  • In the Star Trek: Enterprise episode "In a Mirror, Darkly, Part II", a computer readout mentions that Hoshi Sato was killed on Tarsus IV. [3]


There are numerous different fanon theories and tropes surrounding the events of Tarsus IV. Common examples seen in fanworks include:

  • Kirk as a leader of survivors on Tarsus. It should be noted in this case Kirk is commonly depicted as taking care of various children, and the remaining survivors, when they are rescued, become the Tarsus Nine.
  • In some instances the canonical timeline for the Tarsus IV incident is lengthened, so that the massacre may take place over a series of days or even months.
  • Various plot points are used by authors of reboot stories to get Kirk on Tarsus IV during the massacre. They may closely follow The Original Series canon, or use other issues such as a chaotic home life or punishment to achieve their goal.
  • Kodos' view of Kirk also varies from fic to fic. In some fics, Kodos is depicted as almost loving towards Kirk in a kind of sick parody of a father-son relationship; other fics have Kodos treating Kirk harshly in an effort to break him.
  • Torture, Rape, Non-Con, Starvation, Mass-Murder, etc, are all common themes seen in Tarsus IV fics.
  • Tarsus IV is commonly used as the hurt element in hurt/comfort fic by both AOS and TOS authors. Exploration of the physical and psychological effects of Tarsus IV both during and after the incident are explored.

Characters Related to Tarsus IV

  • Anton Karidian
  • Hoshi Sato
  • James T. Kirk
  • "John Harrison"
  • Kevin Riley
  • Lenore Karidian
  • Thomas Leighton

Tarsus IV Zine Fiction

In The K/S Press #15: a fan compiled a list of known fan fiction in zines that dealt with Tarsus IV:

  • As I Do Thee #21, "Interlude" by Ida Vega (Lt. Kirk meets a Vulcan Musician on Tarsus IV and again seven years later.)
  • Before the Glory, "Joyboy" by Syn Ferguson (Spock meets Kirk shortly after his rescue from Tarsus IV.)
  • By His Side, "Decision" by Karen Rhodes (Jim and Tom Leighton survive the famine on Tarsus IV.)
  • Companion #1, "Without Ceremony" by Christy Mathews (On a lawless planet, Kirk hunts for two of Kodo's lieutenants.)
  • Contact #4, "Only Other Thing" by Ginna LaCroix (Kirk must kill an old friend from Tarsus IV who has become a rebel.)
  • Duet #11 "Stock in Trade" by Tere Ann Roderick (A Vulcan ship trades provisions for slaves with Kodos.)
  • Kirk, "Family Secrets" by Mary Louise Dodge (Kirk visits his aunt on Tarsus IV and finds his cousin is a follower of Kodos.)
  • Log Entries #17 "Treffpunkt" by Sandy Sapatka (Kirk, on his way to Tarsus IV, meets a Vulcan boy on a space station.)
  • More Missions, More Myths #1, "Another King's Conscience" by Natasha Solten (Kirk visits Lenore Karidian after her father's death.)
  • Naked Times #11 "Small Voice" by Robin Hood (Kirk is obsessed by Lenore Karidian after her father's death, remembering Kodos.)
  • Out of Bounds Overflow, " Joseph's Brother, pt.1" by Pamela Rose (Desperate to leave Earth, Sam Kirk sells Jim to Kodos.)
  • Rigel #3, "Flight" by Jane Aumerle (Karidian's wife dies in childbirth and he and the child take refuge in a colony.)
  • Rising Star, "Night Creatures" by Mandi Schultz (Kodos spares Jim and Sam Kirk's life in return for sex.)
  • Sahndara #1 "Death Drops the Final Curtain" by P. Charlene Deaton (Kirk is found with his wrists cut and Lenore Karidian is in the area.)
  • Vault of Tomorrow #5, "Call It a Feeling" by Laura Zipkin (On Altair IV, Lenore Karidian tries to kill Kirk.)
  • The Voice #5, "To Be a Help Meet for Him" by Frances Rowes (After the Galileo loss, Kirk and Spock have to stop a plague on New Paris.)



  1. Memory Alpha, accessed 3.22.2011
  2. [1]. accessed 6.9.2015
  3. [2]. accessed 6.9.2015
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