Computer, turn on the lights.
Space, the final frontier.
These are the voyages of the Starship Enterprise.
Its continuing mission, to explore strange new worlds,...
..to seek out new life and new civilizations,...
..to boldly go where no one has gone before.
Good, you're awake.
- Who are you?. - Please, Counsellor.
There is little time. The Commander will be calling for you.
Where am I?
Aboard the Romulan War bird Khazara. I am Subcommander N'Vek.
I was at the... neuropsychology seminar at Bokara VI.
The last thing I remember was returning to my quarters.
I was attacked. I felt a hypospray.
It was necessary. I could not be certain you would come voluntarily.
Oh, God. My head's still spinning.
The drugs have nearly dissipated.
The disorientation will pass.
- Why have you brought me here? - Listen to me.
You are no longer Deanna Troi.
You are Major Rakal of the Tal Shiar, Imperial Intelligence. Cmdr Toreth...
- Am I a prisoner? - There is no time to explain it all.
Cmdr Toreth will want to know your mission. Tell her nothing.
Simply instruct her to proceed to the Kaleb Sector. Heading 102 mark four.
- The Kaleb Sector?. - Repeat it. Heading 102 mark four.
Heading 102 mark four.
- And she'll take orders from me? - You are a Tal Shiar officer.
She will obey you, but do not push her too far.
We are approaching the loading point. Bring our guest to the bridge.
Yes, Commander. Immediately.
I'm not going anywhere until you tell me what's going on.
You are a Starfleet officer disguised as a Romulan.
Unless you trust me and do exactly as I have said,
Toreth will discover you and you will be killed.
How do I know I won't be killed anyway?
Your only chance to get off this ship alive is to do as I say.
You are an empath. You would know if I am lying. Am I?
Then let us go see the Commander.
- Orbit established, Commander. - Commence loading of cargo.
- Notify me when it is complete. - Yes, sir.
Commander, may I present Major Rakal of the Tal Shiar?
This is Cmdr Toreth.
Attend to your station.
Why are you here without your guards?
The mission is one of utmost secrecy. I could not risk bringing guards.
And what exactly is the nature of this clandestine assignment?
- I cannot reveal that. - Why not?
I am under orders.
You don't act like a member of the Tal Shiar.
- How long have you been with them? - Several months.
Commander, cargo is on board and secure.
Tell me, why should a commander be kept ignorant of her ship's cargo?
I don't know what you mean.
I have orders to take on cargo, but its contents are unknown to me.
Does that seem wise?
I am responsible for the safety of this ship and its crew.
How do I know this cargo is safe to transport?
I'm sure it is safe or it would not have been loaded.
The Tal Shiar is deeply concerned
for the safety and well-being of the military.
I'm sure that every person on the bridge could offer testimony
about personal experiences with the Tal Shiar,
but I doubt many could recall those encounters as tender and caring.
So forgive me if I hesitate to accept your assurances
that that cargo presents no danger to my crew.
I intend to open those containers.
That cargo is the property of the Tal Shiar. You will not touch it.
- On whose authority? - Mine.
If you do not wish to undergo another "experience" with the Tal Shiar,
I suggest you not question me again.
Now... proceed on course, bearing 102 mark four, to the Kaleb Sector.
- Why there? It's virtually deserted. - Because those are your orders.
Pilot, set course.
102 mark 4.
- Warp six. - Yes, Commander.
Captain's log, stardate 465 19. 1.
We are at Research Station 75 to take on a rather unique passenger,
one whose homecoming will undoubtedly be difficult.
The man is a dishonourable traitor.
He risked his life to get here on a scout ship.
That does not excuse his actions.
Maybe he finally realized he made a mistake.
It's 20 years too late. Energize.
Ensign DeSeve, by order of Starfleet Command I arrest you for treason.
After you are declared fit,
you will be confined to quarters until a court martial is convened.
Find civilian clothes instead of that uniform.
Yes, sir. Commander,
- I must speak with Capt Picard. - He's a busy man.
Please. It's important. Urgent.
I'll tell him.
At ease. It's "Captain", actually.
Of course. Sorry, sir.
- You said it was important. - Yes, Captain.
I have a message from Ambassador Spock.
He said it involves further... "cowboy diplomacy",
that you would understand.
A Corvallen freighter is arriving in the Kaleb Sector in 12 hours.
Spock wants you to... rendezvous... with that ship,
bring its cargo back to Federation space.
- What kind of cargo? - He said it was...
..important. To the future of the Romulans and the Federation.
You have returned in order to give me this message?
To know whether Ambassador Spock's message is being delivered accurately
I need to understand something about the messenger.
I was... ready to come back.
Romulus had lost its appeal.
At one time you found it very appealing.
The Romulans are very moral, Captain.
They have an absolute certainty about right and wrong,
who is a friend and who is an enemy,
a strict moral compass which provides them with a clarity of purpose.
At one time I found their sense of purpose,
their passion and commitment, to be very compelling.
But not any more?
As I've grown older, I realize that clarity of purpose is a more...
..ambiguous matter than I had thought in my youth.
Cmdr Riker, set a course for the Kaleb Sector, warp factor eight.
You may wait outside. Make certain we're not disturbed.
They're terrified of me.
The purpose of the Tal Shiar is to ensure loyalty.
To defy them is to invite imprisonment. Or death.
It's time you told me what this is all about.
That is why I called you here.
These are the cargo containers.
What's in it?
He's alive. In stasis. Who is it?
Vice Proconsul M'ret of the Imperial Senate and his two top aides.
He's one of the highest-ranking members of the Romulan government.
His defection will be a great blow to Romulus.
Why is he doing this?
He questioned government repression and was in danger of imprisonment.
He will take this risk in order to protest Romulan policy
and support the dissident movement.
You're part of Spock's underground movement.
Yes. If we are able to deliver M'ret safely,
we hope to create an escape route for dissidents who fear for their lives.
Now you realize why we are willing to go to such lengths,
even kidnapping you, to make sure we succeed.
You've given me the identity of a Tal Shiar officer.
Is there a real Major Rakal?
There was. She was killed for you to take her place.
Only a member of the Tal Shiar would be able to alter a ship's mission.
Why me? A Romulan could have played this role.
Yes. For the first part of the plan.
But if anything goes wrong, we will need a Starfleet officer.
There's no need to go into that unless it becomes necessary.
For your own sake, the less you know about this plan, the better.
What is your plan?
At the Kaleb Sector we'll rendezvous with a Corvallen freighter.
You will take these containers into their ship and return to Starfleet.
The Corvallens are mercenaries. Do they know what's in these?
No. They will simply take you to Federation space.
We are due in the wardroom shortly. Senior officers always dine together.
I'll go to my quarters. I'd prefer to stay out of the Commander's way.
No. You will be expected to attend.
Follow me after a few moments.
Cmdr Toreth must not feel that anything is unusual.
We'd been told that the Klingon outpost was undefended,
so when the warships decloaked... they took us completely by surprise.
They destroyed half my squadron before we even opened fire.
But when we did... They were no match for us.
I destroyed their flagship myself.
I received the Sotaric citation for my actions that day.
The intelligence officer in charge of that mission was executed.
Major. Welcome to our table.
I suggest you try the viinerine. It's quite good.
I realize it's nothing compared to what you're used to on Romulus,
but you could at least try it.
I've smelled better viinerine on prison ships.
Tell me, Major, where did you train?
The Intelligence Academy or the Imperial War College?
- So you must know Cmdr Konsab. - I know of him.
I assume you studied history with him.
Tell me, Major, what do you think about his theories
on the differences between the military and the Tal Shiar?
Come now, Major.
Surely you attended his classes regularly. It was his main theme.
Do you have a point to make, Commander? If so, it has escaped me.
Cmdr Konsab believes that in order to function,
military officers have to trust each other.
The Tal Shiar, on the other hand, trust no one.
They expect deception, so they always find it.
Your opinion of the Tal Shiar is quite clear, Commander.
I hope so.
We ensure the loyalty of the people.
Do you believe the Empire would be better off without our protection?
How was the Empire threatened by the words of an old man,
a devoted citizen who merely tried to speak his mind?
How did the Tal Shiar protect the Empire by dragging him, my father,
out of his home in the middle of the night?
- Clearly, your father was a traitor. - No.
He was just an idealistic old man. I never saw him again.
I don't need your devotion, Commander.
- Just your obedience. - And that's all you have.
Commander, sensors are picking up an unknown ship on an intercept course.
- What is the configuration? - A freighter.
Commander, we are glad to see you.
We are prepared to transfer your cargo as agreed.
With whom do you have this agreement?
Our arrangements were made with Major Rakal.
Rest assured your cargo will be taken safely to its destination.
We will transmit coordinates for you to beam it aboard.
He's lying. They don't intend to keep their word.
- Are you certain? - Yes.
Why did you destroy that vessel?
I beg forgiveness, Commander,
but Major Rakal ordered me to fire.
The freighter is destroyed. There are no survivors.
- I demand an explanation. - How many people were on that ship?
Approximately 18 people, sir.
I don't care if there were 18 or 800.
On this ship, I give the command to fire, Major.
- You have no right... - This gives me the right.
Even you, eventually, will have to answer to someone.
You will be held accountable.
I have been given broad discretionary powers.
Subcommander N'Vek acted under my authority, that of the Tal Shiar.
I assure you, this action will not be questioned.
But I will enter in my log that I am not responsible for those 18 lives
and that I deplore their loss.
Do whatever you feel is necessary.
In the meantime, we must protect ourselves.
Engage the cloaking device.
And what are my orders now, Major?
Hold position and wait.
There is no sign of the freighter. We are the only ship in the area.
Ensign, verify our position.
Holding at the coordinates specified by Ensign DeSeve.
No other ships within three light years.
- Could this have been a hoax? - It's one possibility.
Mr. Worf, bring Ensign DeSeve to my ready room.
Ensign, you promised me a freighter with an important cargo.
All that is here is empty space. Do you have an explanation?
- I don't understand. - Captain, he has deceived us.
No. I was told the ship would be at these coordinates.
You said that the message came directly from Ambassador Spock.
- Well... not exactly. - And what does that mean?
Someone else gave the message to me, but he said Spock spoke to him.
I trust the man who spoke to me. He would not have lied.
- Was he a Romulan? - Yes.
He's part of the underground, a dissident.
He risks his life to work with those who want a different future.
- He could be leading us into a trap. - No, that is not so.
It would be risky to set a trap here, so close to Federation space.
But the fact remains, here we are, there is no freighter.
What else did your contact tell you?
The freighter is an old Antares-class vessel with limited speed and range.
It couldn't have taken on its cargo more than a day ago,
so it must be within... 15 light years of here.
Why didn't you mention this earlier?
It didn't seem necessary.
On Romulus, you learn not to volunteer information.
It's a hard habit to break.
Maybe now would be a good time to start.
Follow me, gentlemen.
- Our plan has collapsed. - Our plan?
What about the people on that freighter? Why did you fire?
There was no alternative. You said they couldn't be trusted.
The mission would have been in jeopardy.
- 18 people lost their lives. - Don't lecture me.
A number of people have died to carry out this mission.
Believe me, those 18 won't be the last.
I'm sorry, but I can't dismiss those lives so easily.
Fine. Agonize all you want. But don't let it sabotage our plan.
You don't have a plan any more.
I told you if anything went wrong, we would need a Starfleet officer.
There is a Starfleet base on Draken IV, two days away at maximum warp.
- That's where we're going. - In a Romulan ship?
Yes. It's your job to order Toreth to proceed into Federation territory.
We'll never get through the gravidic-sensor nets.
We will... if you provide the correct access codes.
Do you really think this has a chance of succeeding?
If you have another idea, I'll be happy to consider it.
You will plot a course for the Draken System.
You can't be serious.
Draken IV was the freighter's destination.
I ordered it destroyed because I recognized the captain, a known spy.
Now we must deliver the cargo ourselves.
- We must...? - I will not explain myself to you.
- You will set a course. - In order to reach Draken
we will have to travel through Federation space for nearly 20 hours.
That is not a problem.
Contrary to the propaganda you would have us believe
Starfleet is neither weak nor foolish.
The chances of us reaching Draken undetected are not good.
We will be cloaked.
Cloaking does not always make us invulnerable.
You would know that if you had spent time in the field.
The Federation's borders are full of listening posts, gravidic sensors.
They may even have a tachyon grid, in which case they'll know we're there.
If we are discovered in Federation territory,
it will be interpreted as an act of war.
The Tal Shiar has obtained access codes to the sensor nets.
I will provide them if necessary.
That will be no guarantee that we will escape undetected.
Your cowardice does not befit a Romulan soldier.
People blame the military for the wars that we are asked to fight, ...
..but I think it is your kind, Major, that will be the death of us all.
Plot a course for the Draken System.
- Course plotted, sir. - Prepare for warp.
Sensors are picking up a vessel.
Cloaking is still engaged. They have not detected us.
Activate view screen.
- It is the Enterprise, Commander. - Well, Major,
it appears your suspicions about the freighter were correct after all.
The Federation has come in search of its spies. Status?
They are scanning the debris of the freighter.
Shield levels normal. Weapons systems not active.
They are not prepared for battle.
They weren't expecting to find us. And I shan't alter that perception.
The radiation from the debris field could make our cloak detectable.
- Proceed at manoeuvring speed. - One moment, Commander.
We should hold our position until the ship leaves the area.
We cannot risk detection.
Even if we are detected, they cannot track us in warp.
We have not established their intentions.
Their intentions are obvious and are of no concern to us.
Proceed on course. Manoeuvring engines only.
Go to warp when we are clear of the debris field.
We should clear the field in 27 minutes.
You will keep me informed of our progress.
It is not wise to challenge the Tal Shiar, Commander.
I will not let her tell me how to run my ship.
It seems to be the remains of a ship, an Antares-class freighter.
That's the ship we were meant to meet.
Could there have been a malfunction? A reactor-core breach?
I do not believe so. It would not be consistent with the debris pattern.
However, sensors indicate extremely high levels of residual antiprotons.
- Romulan disruptor fire. - Correct.
The decay rate suggests the incident occurred within the last 4.3 hours.
Then Romulans could still be in the area.
Red alert. Shields at maximum.
Whatever that freighter was carrying, they didn't want it to reach us.
- Sure you don't know what it was? - No, sir, I swear it.
All we have here are questions. Mr. Data, continue with your scan.
We have to get a message to the Enterprise.
- That's impossible. - It's the perfect opportunity.
They are nearby. If we communicate with them, maybe they can help us.
Counsellor, this ship is travelling under cloak.
All electromagnetic emissions are being monitored.
Any attempt at all at communication and we would be discovered instantly.
It could not succeed. Continuing to Draken IV is the safest course.
Is there anything you can do to the ship or the cloaking device
that would let the Enterprise track us?
Track us? No.
We want to get into Federation territory undetected.
What we want is to get the dissidents to safety.
Now answer the question. Is there a way?
If there were, I wouldn't do it.
Yes, you will.
- Counsellor... - We're playing it my way now.
I've been kidnapped, surgically altered, put in danger...
I've gone along with all your plans. Now you are going to listen to me.
You find a way to let the Enterprise track us
or I will go to Toreth and tell her I've discovered you're a traitor.
I'll have you ejected into space. Is that clear, Subcommander?
There is one possibility.
In order for a ship to remain undetectable while cloaked,
the radiative emissions from the warp engines must be precisely balanced.
The ship's engineer is a sympathiser.
He may be able to slightly misalign one of the n'livia cores,
It would create a magnetic disruption in space whenever we were in motion.
Good. Do it.
The effect would be intermittent. They might not even detect it.
If it's the best we can do, we have to try it.
Anything more would be registered on the bridge.
Even this slight misalignment may be detected.
It's a risk we have to take.
You're the one that outlined the stakes to me, N'Vek.
Are you getting squeamish just when it's getting a little more dangerous?
Sensors are picking up a magnetic distortion to our port side.
The distortion is extremely weak. It appears to be moving slowly. It...
- It is gone, sir. - Gone?
The distortion no longer registers on our instruments.
Could this distortion be caused by a cloaked ship?
Unknown, sir. Our understanding of Romulan technology is still limited.
Captain, Romulan ships use a quantum singularity as a power source.
If it is not functioning perfectly or is damaged even slightly,
it might show through the cloak as a magnetic disturbance.
The distortion has reappeared, sir, bearing 337 mark 10.
It... It has disappeared again, sir.
Mr. DeSeve, in your opinion, could we be picking up a cloaked Romulan ship?
It's a strong possibility.
Mr. Data, continue scanning. Ensign, link navigation to Mr. Data's console.
And... plot a course for that distortion.
The Enterprise is underway.
Good. What is their course?
- They're heading for us, sir. - What?
They appear to be on an intercept course.
What is the status of our cloaking device? Is there some malfunction?
Device functioning correctly. All emissions within proper range.
- Maintain full sensor scans. - Commander.
The Enterprise may simply be searching.
- Where is it now, Mr. Data? - It has disappeared once again, sir.
- It may have been coming to a halt. - Stop engines.
If this is a Romulan ship, will it wait until we leave?
I don't think so. A Romulan commander's instinct is to attack.
Engage manoeuvring engines, forward 0.1 .
- Take us directly under their hull. - Yes, Commander.
What are you doing?
It seems that the Enterprise can track us even though we are cloaked.
I intend to find out if they can or they cannot.
N'Vek, ready attack procedure.
Sir, disruptors are standing by, ready to disengage cloak.
We cannot risk an engagement here.
Considering our mission, I would have preferred to avoid it as well.
- But I see no other alternative. - What do you intend to do?
We will pass as close as we possibly can.
If they have the ability to track us, they will move to avoid a collision.
If they do, I will destroy them.
Sir, the magnetic distortion has reappeared.
Bearing and speed?
It appears to be moving toward us, closing slowly.
Its bearing indicates a collision course.
Time to impact?
I cannot get a precise measurement, but I estimate impact in 90 seconds.
It doesn't make sense. Why would they run into us?
- And why do it at full speed? - I don't know, sir.
The Romulans only make suicide attacks as a last resort.
There's no reason for it here.
Time to impact, 60 seconds.
We don't have the luxury to speculate. Back us away, Ensign,
- One-half impulse. - Aye, sir.
- They are moving away. - Prepare attack sequence.
- Ready for battle, Commander. - Disruptors charged.
Disengage cloak on my command. Prepare to fire.
Disregard that order.
- What? - I do not authorize this attack.
Cease battle operations immediately.
I do not need your authorization to attack, Major. This is my ship.
How typical of the military to resort to brute force
when discretion is required.
The Enterprise can clearly track us. They must be destroyed.
Yes, they can track us.
So if we attack them, they will return fire.
And since we have no shields when we're cloaked,
they will destroy us.
Are you questioning my ability to command?
You are not fit to command.
Step down or I will have you removed.
Do you think anyone here will listen to you?
If any of you defies the Tal Shiar,
you will not bear the punishment alone.
Your families, all of them, will be there beside you.
I am now commander of this ship. Take orders from me and no one else.
Remove Cmdr Toreth from her station.
If she resists... shoot her.
Commander, please. Step down.
Remove her weapon.
watch and learn.
In order to defeat your enemy, you must first understand them.
The Federation wishes to avoid war at all costs,
so I will offer them a diplomatic solution,
get them to lower their shields,
- Captain, we are being hailed. - On screen.
I am Major Rakal of the "Tal Shiar".
I'm Jean-Luc Picard of the Enterprise.
How can we be of help?
A Corvallen freighter has been destroyed not far from here.
We have detected the residual effects of disruptor fire.
- Can you shed any light on this? - A regrettable incident, Captain.
The freighter was fired upon by the former commander of this vessel.
I have now taken control and I assure you there will be no more attacks.
Still, there was considerable loss of life.
Captain, we do not want to ex aggerate this incident.
You and I can discuss it calmly.
We can... defuse it before it becomes inflated.
- I agree. - I will come onto your ship.
Please lower your shields and prepare to beam me aboard.
Very well. Mr. Worf, lock on to Major Rakal, transport on my command.
- Aye, sir. - Thank you.
- What's she doing on that ship? - I don't know, Number One.
But she needs our help to get back.
Mr. Worf, keep that lock on her, no matter what.
- Their shields are dropping. - Activate forward-disruptor array.
- Fire when ready. - Yes, Major. Firing.
They have fired on us.
Shields up. Stand by phasers. Damage report.
Direct hit, but negligible damage. The disruptor had almost no power.
It's Proconsul M'ret and his aides. From the underground movement.
They're in stasis. Medical team, to the bridge.
The Enterprise was not damaged. They have re-established shields.
Malfunction in the disruptor array. The power system has destabilized.
The disruptor beam has been sabotaged to conceal a transporter beam within.
Quickly, Pilot, locate transport coordinates.
What have you done?
The transporter beam originated in our cargo bay.
Something was beamed to the Enterprise.
the mysterious cargo,
brought on board by Major Rakal of the Tal Shiar,
has been transported to the Starfleet vessel.
I see two traitors in our midst.
Now you can no longer take refuge behind the shield of the Tal Shiar,
it's time to answer a few questions. What was in those cargo containers?
Well, no matter.
We will soon know all that we need to know,
then we will execute you.
Pilot, drop shields and cloak the ship.
- Prepare to go to warp. - Aye, sir.
Mr. Worf, now.
- Counsellor... Are you alright? - Yes.
Let's get you to sickbay.
- Get us out of here. Warp nine. - Aye, sir.
That about does it. How does it feel to have your own face back?
Just right. Thank you.
The men you rescued are all safe. Proconsul M'ret is deeply grateful.
The thanks should go to N'Vek. He sacrificed himself to save them.
- And me. - Thanks to the two of you,
the way has been paved for further rescue operations.
N'Vek's efforts, and his sacrifice, were not in vain.