Designed by Eugene Lefaucheux, manufactured for the American Civil War, later converted to centerfire. 11mm Perrin, single action, side loading gate, lanyard ring. I don’t know what advantage this gave its owner, considering 12mm pinfire cartridges were much more abundant. At least that’s how it was in the old world.
Sarek and Amanda are the bees’ knees. I’ll confess – they
might be my favorite pairing ever. Part of what I find so appealing about them
is how different they are and how difficult their marriage must have been, but
they managed to find a way to love each other and endure. The other part of
what’s so great is that there’s so little in canon, and it gives way to a lot
of imagination. They’ve been central to a number of novels and fan fictions
over the years, but almost everything we do know about their relationship comes from the TOS episode “Journey to Babel” and the
films Star Trek III: The Search for Spock
and Star Trek V: The Final Frontier.
People dispute the canonicity of the animated series, but there were snippets
of their lives revealed in the episode “Yesteryear,” and we were given glimpses
in the 2009 rebooted Star Trek. But
They really are cute, aren’t they?
We know a lot more about Sarek than we do about Amanda, and
there are a couple of things in canon that many fans of this pairing really
seem to despise. First, Sarek obviously had a female companion before he met
Amanda because Spock wasn’t his first son: Sybok was. Secondly, after Amanda’s
death, he eventually remarried a human woman named Perrin, whose most egregious
crime was that she married our beloved Vulcan widower.
Why are people so married to the idea that Sarek and Amanda
are soul mates like ole’ Dan and Ann from Where
the Red Fern Grows? Or hopelessly devoted to each other like Romeo and
Juliet, such that Sarek should want to kill himself following Amanda’s death? Most
people who have experienced a romantic relationship have done so
with more than one person, so why do we hold Sarek to this impossible standard?
I’ll start with Sybok’s mother. She’s never formally named
in canon; she’s only identified as a Vulcan princess who died. The end. There’s
no explanation of whether or not she was actually married to Sarek, how old she
and Sarek were when they hatched Sybok, how old Sybok was when she died, or
virtually anything. There’s a lot of
weird fanon speculation about her, and almost all of it vilifies her in some
way, because you know, she dared to have a relationship with Sarek well before
he even met Amanda (and possibly before Amanda was ever even born).
Artist’s rendering of Sybok’s mom.
The TOS novel Sarek identifies her as T’Rea, a woman
who married Sarek, had sex with him exactly
one time, gave birth to Sybok, kept him hidden from Sarek, had their marriage
annulled, and went on to teach Sybok that emotions were actually good things. Other
variations on this theme include 1.) she left Sarek for another man, 2.) Sybok isn’t
actually his biological son, 3.) they were never really married, or 4.) pretty much anything you can contrive that
would put romantic distance between them. If there’s a theory that includes Sybok’s conception via turkey baster, I wouldn’t be shocked.
There really is the possibility they were never married. In
the TNG episode “Sarek,” Sarek
strongly implies Amanda was his first wife, and if that really is the case,
then perhaps he never was married to Sybok’s mother. I’m not sure if some people
are aware, but it is possible to swap gametes outside of marriage. Or
perhaps other fanon theories hold true and their marriage was annulled or Sybok
is actually Sarek’s adopted son, reminiscent of Julius Caesar and Augustus
But whatever the case, Sybok’s existence strongly points to the fact
that Sarek probably spent some time between the sheets with a woman other than
Amanda, and given what we know about Vulcans, why is this thought so
repugnant? The TOS episode “Amok Time” establishes that many Vulcan children
are bonded at age seven, so it’s very likely Sarek was also. Furthermore,
according to canon, Sarek was in his 60s when he met Amanda, so unless he
didn’t experience his first pon farr until middle adulthood – which I imagine
would be roughly analogous to getting one’s first period at age 32 – he
probably had to find some way to cope with this drawback of Vulcan biology.
Now, barring any kind of Big
Love scenario, Sarek was once again a bachelor by the time he met Amanda. I
could write about this pairing for days, but because their relationship has
been so heavily analyzed, I’ll keep it short.
Sarek clearly cared for Amanda and Amanda definitely loved
him back, but I imagine they had more than a few bumps throughout their
marriage. I should probably save my feelings about the bizarre way Sarek is
romanticized for another post, so I’ll just point out something about their
relationship that I feel is painfully obvious – Vulcans live much longer than
humans, so Sarek, being the logical dude he is, must have understood Amanda was
going to kick the bucket long before he did. Yet he married her anyway. And
then she died. It sucks, but hey, biology can be cruel.
And then Perrin comes into play. We first meet Perrin in the
TNG episode “Sarek” and she reappears
in the TNG episodes “Unification
I/II.” The amount of hate she gets among Sarek/Amanda shippers is truly epic.
One would think she seduced Sarek in the grand style of a succubus, had Amanda
murdered, and then forced Sarek to dance on her grave.
So she’s probably not guilty of home wrecking, but she’s definitely guilty of having a questionable choice in headbands.
And that is so
weird. I don’t know why Sarek took another human wife, but he did. My instincts tell me she
probably reminded him of Amanda in some way, and I’m sure after an appropriate
period of mourning, he decided to get on with his life. Some people move on
after the death of a spouse, some people don’t. We’re allowed to handle loss in
any way we find appropriate, but remember, Sarek had pon farr to deal with.
Perhaps his reason for taking another wife had a basis in practicality too.
The hate for Perrin is even more bizarre when one realizes
that – again, excepting some kind of witchcraft seduction – Sarek agreed to marry her. To hate Perrin for
marrying Sarek, one must also hate Sarek for marrying Perrin. I don’t think
finding love after Amanda’s death meant he loved Amanda any less, but that he
had room in his heart to love even more, and given the nature of the Vulcan
heart, I think that’s really intriguing.
And here’s the kicker: Perrin clearly loved Sarek. He died
in the TNG episode “Unification I,” and Perrin was with him until the bitter
end. At that point, he was suffering from Bendii Syndrome and hadn’t managed to
reconcile with his son prior to his death. It’s really very sad, but it would
have been sadder still for him to have died alone.
Love can be sad and painful. How does that amulet not cause back problems?
Maybe Sarek wasn’t looking to replace Amanda as the one
true love of his life; maybe he was looking for a companion. Whatever Perrin
was to him, she was there for him through the Bendii Syndrome, so there’s that.
Bottom line is, we love in all different kinds of ways. Love
can last as long as lust and fade into nothing or it can metamorphose into
passion or companionship. Lovers can become friends and friends can become
lovers – there is no universal or right way to love.
Maybe I say this because I don’t subscribe to the concept of
soul mates. The idea of soul mates implies that we’re static beings, who exist
largely to make up one half of a greater whole. But people change – at 31, I
love much differently than I loved at 14 – and our purpose extends far beyond the people we love
romantically. To suggest otherwise implies that a person who dies before
experiencing romantic love never realized their full potential and completely
cheated someone else out of the chance at true, unadulterated bliss.
No. I don’t think so. The human heart has the capacity to be
a hell of a lot more resilient than that, so why shouldn’t the same be true of
the Vulcan heart?
Manufactured by Louis Perrin c.1873~80′s in paris, France - based on his Mle1865 revolver design - serial number 413. 11mm73 six-round cylinder, double action, side-loading gate with manual ejector rod, leaf sight, military foregrip and buckles. Originally presented in its prototype stage along with its handgun counterpart to the French army as concurrents to the Chassepot rifle and Lefaucheux revolver, the Perrin Mle1865 was rejected on both occasion. It was however a very popular private purchase for French officers, especially in the Army where the service pistols were still percussion designs. I doubt that the prototype carbine presented by Perrin was in a serious military rifle caliber, which might have been why it lost to the Chassepot despite arguably using superior technology. This particular example was manufactured well after that however, since it is chambered for the same round used in the MAS Mle1873 revolver.
Here’s the thing about this love story that’s so amazing. Despite all its twists and turns, it has endured for almost twenty years. You guys have been best friends your whole lives. You fell in love with her when you were in kindergarten and have never stopped loving her. Not even for a day. You told me you always knew that someday you’d be together. I think that someday is now. The only question is: what the hell are you waiting for?