Commander Charles Tucker III, known by his crew and friends as "Trip”, served as chief engineer and then the Second officer of Earth's first warp 5-capable starship, the Enterprise NX-01, under the command of Captain Jonathan Archer.
As a child, he read many books with his mother including "The War of the Worlds". Early on his ambition was to be a starship captain. His parents had other hopes for him as his father thought he should be an engineer, while his mother thought he should be an architect.
When he was seven, Tucker's mother bought him a copy of Emory Erickson's "The Father of the Transporter". He had her read it to him every night for a month. His childhood admiration for Emory Erickson is what caused him to drop his ambition to be a Captain and instead want to become an engineer. He was apt at the deconstruction of things, but not so good at putting it all back together again. Tucker enjoyed tormenting his younger sister, Elizabeth. He once put a garden snake in her dollhouse. When he would go to the movies, she would "scream like a banshee" if he didn't take her.
Tucker often went on camping trips with his friends. They would spend most of the night looking up at the stars, imagining what Earth's sun would look like from a distant planet.
Tucker attended Bayshore Elementary. He made a regrettable mistake regarding the first dance he ever attended. Melissa Lyles, a girl whom he had a crush on, would be there. Tucker spent weeks practicing dance steps with his brother in preparation for the event. On the night of the dance, she wore a red dress, and in his opinion, she was the prettiest girl there. He wanted badly to dance with her but could not bring up the courage to do so. Tucker caught the girl looking at him a few times, but still did nothing, and ended up standing in a corner with his friends. Twenty years later, he still regretted not asking Melissa to dance.
In tenth grade, Tucker received instruction by a Vulcan teacher who was a scientist sent to teach Earth children about life on other planets. Mr. Velik intimidated Tucker as the first Vulcan or non-human he had ever met. Velik often reminded his students, "Challenge your preconceptions or they'll challenge you."
Tucker was a natural engineer, working on boat engines, teaching himself the trade.
Tucker joined Starfleet in 2139, living in Sausalito, a few blocks from the Vulcan Compound. He reminisced later in life that he "got into a lot of trouble" at Starfleet Training Command during his time there.
In the 2140s he had joined Captain Jefferies' engineering team, achieving the rank of lieutenant. After the failure and destruction of the warp-2 prototype vessel NX-Alpha in 2143, Tucker met Commander Jonathan Archer. He later helped Archer and A.G. Robinson in burgling a backup warp-2 prototype vessel, the NX-Beta, to help prove to Starfleet Command that the engine design was now sound. Tucker bonded a stronger friendship with Archer by teaching him how to scuba dive off the coast of Florida.
They continued training and missions together. Their survival training in Australia stretched over two weeks together. In 2147 they were on Titan as part of the Omega training mission. A malfunction with Tucker's environmental suit occurred and during his panic and confusion, Tucker attempted to remove his helmet. Archer saved his life by preventing him from doing so.
By 2151, Tucker was well known for his gifts in orbital engineering and as the chief engineer for the Enterprise NX-01. Life aboard such a new and experimental ship was filled with firsts. In a ship with artificial gravity, Tucker was shown a zero-g spot by Ensign Mayweather. His part in morale for the crew was a regular movie night.
Tucker helped return the Klingon Klaang to his homeworld and helped retrieve information that prevented a civil war.
On a deserted planet, he was infected with pollen that caused paranoia and it left him delusionally thinking the crew was attempting to kill him.
The Enterprise made first contact with a species known as the Xyrillians. Tucker boarded their ship to assist them with their engines and had extreme difficulties adapting to their physical environment aboard. During his work, he formed a relationship with Ah’len, their engineer. After he left, Tucker found he was pregnant, or rather a host, for the Xyrillians. He became the first Human male to become pregnant, as well as the first known Human to participate, albeit unknowingly, with interspecies reproduction. The ship was tracked down and the Xyrillians transferred the embryo to another host.
When the Enterprise visited the Vulcan monastery at P’Jem, Tucker, Archer, and the Vulcan officer T’Pol became entangled in a dispute between the Vulcans and Andorians. They were held hostage during the dispute until they were rescued by Lieutenant Malcolm Reed and the Enterprise.
An Andorian named Shran, freed Tucker and Reed after they were taken attempting a rescue of Archer and T’Pol from rebel forces on Coridan.
Tucker and Reed became stranded in a shuttlepod after they found debris at their rendezvous coordinates and believed the Enterprise had been destroyed. The Enterprise had instead rescued a damaged ship and taken it back to its planet. With their air supply running out, Tucker devised a plan to use the impulse engines as a “flare” to signal a ship. The Enterprise detected it and arrived, saving them.
A symbiotic creature that had stowed away on the Enterprise managed to capture Tucker and attach to his nervous system. It infected others too. After its peaceful intent to return home and reunite with its host was discovered, the creature released the crew, including Tucker, and the Enterprise returned it to it's host
During the many encounters with the Suliban and the Cabal, the Enterprise became entangled in the Temporal War. Archer was taken into the future by Temporal Agent Daniels and Tucker was the one to pull Archer back restoring the timeline. Daniels also forced Tucker to expand past his current understanding to learn quantum engineering and build quantum beacons.
He used Suliban technology to rescue Archer and Reed from a death sentence. He used a cloaking device which resulted in him accidentally cloaking his right arm.
The Xindi were six sentient species who evolved on the same planet in the Delphic Expanse. In 2153, the Xindi Council launched an attack on Earth that killed 7 million people in Florida, one being Tucker’s sister, Elizabeth. Tucker was never the same after this event, growing bitter with fits of rage and sleepless nights. T’Pol helped alleviate the sleep issues with Vulcan neuro pressure. This closeness helped deepen the bond between them eventually leading to a romantic relationship.
Tucker finally came face to face with a Xindi at a mining camp. An away team attempted to rescue the Xindi Kessick. He was killed in the attempt but gave the coordinates of the Xindi homeworld in the "Expanse" before he passed.
The Delphic Expanse was a region of space approximately fifty light-years away from Earth. It was composed of a type of thermobaric gas clouds which were highly hazardous to starships and their navigation.
According to the Triannons, a native species that regarded the Expanse as the "Chosen Realm," was an area that had been created by beings they referred to as "the Makers," in preparation for their eventual return. With the destruction of the Sphere network, the clouds dissipated in 2154, leaving navigation to be freely undertaken in this sector.
Tucker and T'Pol attempted to replicate trellium-D, a substance that would protect the Enterprise from the deadly anomalies in the Expanse. Their experiment ended in failure when it exploded.
Tucker then shifted to “rewriting the book on warp theory” as he realized the Cochrane equation wasn't constant in the Expanse, with spatial gradients destabilizing the warp field. Finally, he did succeed though, with some rerouting of system taps and compressing the antimatter stream before it entered the injectors, he was able to stabilize the warp field.
Tucker was nearly killed by a primary injector flare when he encountered a polaric field. Dr. Phlox grew a clone to harvest brain tissue from. The clone, Sim, attempted to escape the Enterprise to save his life as the transplant would kill him. Sim heroically changed his mind though and allowed Dr. Phlox to go ahead with the procedure even knowing he would not survive it.
The Enterprise recovered a small craft in the Expanse with an unknown type of alien inside. Tucker, examining the craft, determined it was a test subject with atmospheric testing to see the effects of exposure to space. It was the first indication of an outside alien force behind the Xindi.
After the battle of Azati Prime and the losses incurred, Tucker was given the task of communicating with the families of the deceased. Doing so helped Tucker process his own loss, reconcile what had happened, and work through it. Complicating this healing process was the presence of Degra, one of the council members of the Xindi, and the one that designed the weapon that had killed his sister. Trip had several tense encounters with Degra, as Archer worked to gain his trust, but consoling the families is what finally brought Tucker closure.
The Enterprise's warp coil had been damaged during a Battle with the Xindi and had to be replaced. Tucker was part of the effort to steal a new one from an Illyrian ship.
In the final battle with the Xindi, Tucker played a key role by destroying one of the spheres, disrupting its energy field,which allowed Archer and his team to board the Xindi weapon and destroy it.
Time Travel, Loss, and the Federation
On Earth, the Enterprise and her crew found themselves in 1944, again dealing with the Temporal War. Making matters worse, the Suliban Silik secretly boarded the Enterprise while Archer was in the hands of the Nazi Germans on Earth. The crew found it was Daniels who transported them to this altered past with Temporal War factions managing to destroy the time conduit moments before the Leader named Vosk could enter. This had the effect of eliminating the timeline changes he had made, unraveling the alternate timeline, and bringing the Temporal Cold War to an end.
With the Enterprise returned to its correct time, Tucker was shocked and upset that T’Pol ended their relationship and married the Vulcan who had been betrothed to her as a child. It left Trip feeling despondent and heartbroken.
Eventually, unable to put his feelings behind him, he transferred to the Columbia NX-02 but returned during the Augment crisis with the Klingons. He transferred permanently back to the Enterprise shortly after he found his psychic bond with T’Pol made him immune to the Orion women who used their pheromone effect on human males to take over the Enterprise.
In the early days of the Conference that would lead to the Federation, a xenophobic terrorist group called Terra Prime, lead by a man called Paxton, used a clone of a combination of stolen DNA from T’Pol and Tucker to disrupt the conference. T’Pol named her Elizabeth, after Tucker’s deceased sister. After infiltrating, being captured, and then disabling a weapon that the group was threatening to use unless all aliens left Sol sector, the couple faced heartbreak as Elizabeth, suffering from defects in her cloning, died.
Later Career and Death
In 2161, the Federation charter was about to be signed. Tucker remained on board the Enterprise as its chief engineer. En route to Earth to attend the ceremony and alliance that would begin the United Federation of Planets, the Enterprise made a detour to Rigel X to rescue Shran's daughter. They were successful, almost losing Archer during the away mission, but her abductors managed to sneak aboard the Enterprise.
The alien trespassers threatened Archer and Tucker, Tucker quickly created a plan to lure the aliens away from Archer, despite orders from Archer to remain quiet an cooperate. Tucker continued and persuaded one of the aliens to render Archer unconscious. With his captain safe and no longer in the way, Tucker lured the aliens to a nearby plasma junction, which he claimed was a communications system to contact Shran. Knowing they believed him, Tucker rigged the junction to explode, killing the alien trespassers. It also critically injured Trip, and he died for his Captain. Tucker's death however, assured the founding of the future Federation, as Archer was instrumental in its founding.
The End or was it?
Rumors that Tucker’s death was faked by a mysterious organization called Section 31 surfaced 250 years after Tucker's death. It was rumored Tucker was sent on a mission to Romulus after he underwent surgery, to make him look like a Romulan, in order to infiltrate the Romulan government and its military to help Earth in the inevitable war between the two species. Tucker later carried out more missions for 31 before learning that Section 31 had engineered the destruction of the Partnership of Civilizations by providing the Klingons with the Ware shutdown code that Starfleet had developed. He concluded that he could no longer be part of Section 31 and retired to Vulcan after changing his appearance and name again to be with T’Pol where he became a father of two.