When the Federated Sentient Planets learned that Pern was still populated, over two thousand years after being told that the colonists had perished to the mychorriza spores, the now very different FSP had to know how they had survived all those years with limited technology. With the revelations about dragons and grubs, an expedition to Pern was irresistible. No one knew what to expect, as no colony had ever been isolated from FSP contact for so long.

It was decided that the expedition would treat the situation somewhat like a First Contact. No one knew if the Pernese survivors had retained the knowledge of their origins, though obviously they knew something, because they had used the engines of the old colony ships to change the orbit of the wandering planet to halt future incursions of the mychorriza on their planet.

A team was gathered of the finest specialists known, and they were sent to establish contact alphabasewith the colonists' descendants. Locating the only area suitable for shuttle landings and sufficiently far from any known colony settlement, they established a camp, officially known as Alpha Base. After the removal of the FSP from Pern the defectors that stayed behind were allowed to keep Alpha Base open with the new name of Alpha Hold.

Alpha Hold is located 50 kilometers from Dawnsisters Weyr, it resembles a small city more than a hold with sterile laboratories, meeting halls, a Dragon landing area, and fully contained living quarters, schools and play areas for the families of the remaining FSP defectors.

The Study Team leader, Cassaundra McCree, has been named Lady Warder until the such time as her son Kelaun is old enough and fully trained to take over the role of Holder. Nearly every member of the Military Team returned to the FSP, most of the defectors came from the Study and Tech Teams.

The hold played an important role in the recent disasters being the primary means of determining approximately when and where asteroids would hit. The hold escaped any major damage and helped with housing those left homeless or injured.

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