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post Feb 6 2011, 04:08 PM
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star trek: the motion picture

an ever expanding infinity of light and color
travels through deep space, moving directly for one
pinpoint of light: a star growing rapidly as we sweep
toward it, a normal white star suddenly changing,
brightening, flaring unbelievable intensity: supernova.
holds just a moment, then moves on, search-
ing through space, the jeweled beauty of other star
systems, sparkling nebulae, swirling hydrogen clouds.
still moving,
in the far distance, slowly growing in size as
approaches: it resembles, vaguely at this distance, an
aurora borealis: flaring colors from the fringes,
beautiful yet ominous. it is so large, this cloud, it
can envelope an entire solar system. continues
approaching the cloud, and then suddenly, crossing
in a graceful, turning arc toward the mysterious
luminescence. follows this klingon, then finds
a second klingon cruiser, also turning toward the cloud,
which continues to grow in size as the klingons
approach at warp speed, closing on the lead
ship, until the vessel's detail can be clearly made
out: lights, weaponry, power systems, identification
emblazoned on the nacelles and saucer in klingon
language (and symbols).
clearly alien, an odd-sounding klaxon signaling
"battle stations." orders issued in klingon language,
the klingon captain and exec peering at an unusual
bridge viewer at the huge area of luminescent haze
directly ahead. in klingon dialogue:

klingon captain
(give me tactical.)

goes suddenly to a tactical grid system, showing the
luminescent haze to be an enormous blip of light on
the screen, with two tiny pinpricks of light complete-
ing their turn on a direct course toward it.
the patrol is clearly seen now on the right of the
bottom of the frame... three tiny ships closing on the

steadily growing luminescent haze.
all eyes on the viewer that shows the ships sweeping
on the mysterious cloud.

klingon captain

the technician makes the switch.
growing ever larger, its flaring colors menacing,
mysterious, strangely beckoning.
the crew stands by for battle.

klingon captain
tactical again. stand by on

sliding open, the glowing "hell fire" of the photon
launch tubes, slowly revealed.
they are tiny, insect-like shapes moving still closer
to the luminescent cloud, so large now that it begins
to dominate all space behind.
the growing nearness and enormous size of the cloud
also reflected on the tactical grid, somehow more
awesome by this schematic view. the captain gestures
the order to "fire."
the brilliant photon blobs of the torpedoes spurt from
the tubes.
a deadly photon torpedo pattern racing away from the
klingon and toward the luminescent glow in the distance.
three torpedoes are heading directly toward the cloud.
suddenly they glow briefly and disappear long before
they reach their intended target.
incredulous that their torpedoes have disappeared
without a trace.
as the second and third ships launch torpedoes toward
the color-flaring surface of the cloud. this time we
have an outside, real view of the torpedoes glowing
brightly and then disappearing with no effect.
the klingon crew grim, desperate, watching a bright
staccato blip of power from within the luminescence.

klingon captain
full force fields; evasive

out of the luminescence hurtles a frightening whiplash
of energy. it bears down on the klingon patrol, now
in an evasive maneuver. then the whiplash bolt hits
the third cruiser in a writhing flare of energy which
totally engulfs the vessel.
the other two ships veer off, warping around again into
attack position. the third ship has begun to implode
in on itself, the matter-energy of its existence
drained by the whiplash bolt that holds it.
desperately defending themselves, force fields full up,
rapidly firing photon torpedoes. but now a second
whiplash energy bolt has emerged from the cloud and
hits the second vessel, destroying it.
the third whiplash bolt glances off the surviving
cruiser as the ship retreats in a wide, evasive turn,
firing from stern tubes.
the bridge shattered; klingon bodies. the mortally-
wounded captain is transmitting urgently:

klingon captain
... severely damaged. returning

serenity here. a barren, rocky small plantoid softly
lit by the myriad stars. this is a small starfleet
outpost, antennae sprouting everywhere. tiny figures
(workers) servicing one antenna illustrate the size
of the installation.
showing the battle scene, and the voice of the klingon
captain in his last stand against the object; his voice
is weary, almost mechanical. on the adjacent viewer,
an english printout of the klingon's words chatters
along the bottom of the picture:

klingon captain
imperial klingon cruiser amar...
severely damaged by unfamiliar
weaponry... intruder unidentified..

at the viewers are a female lieutenant and four tech-
nicians. commander branch, a young, alert, enters hur-
riedly, scans he console.

our sensor drone is intercepting
this on quad l-14.

klingon captain
... believe luminescent cloud
to be enormous power field
surrounding alien vessel...
size and description unknown..
our sensor scans unable to
penetrate. imperial klingon
cruiser amar... continuing
to attack.

that's within klingon boundaries.
who are they fighting?

unknown, sir.

a violent explosion inside the klingon bridge -- klingon
captain's body is thrown violently against the bulkhead.

i have an exterior visual!

showing exterior of the klingon vessel: a final,
frightening whiplash energy bolt strikes it -- then
the same awesome implosion into fireball.
the starfleet station onlookers react to the utter
annihilation of the huge cruiser. and now, past where
the cruiser just disappeared -- the mysterious lumines-
cence approaching in distance. technician hits a
switch, magnifying the strange cloud.

we've plotted a course on that
cloud, commander: it will pass
into federation space fairly
close to us.


as its focal point shifts to the huge elliptically-
shaped luminescence racing across the sky. music
commences in a low, unresolved chord
that remains in the background through the remainder
of this scene, and the beginning of the next one.

lieutenant's voice
sir, it's on a precise heading
for earth.

ominously now the luminescence increases in size, and
begins to fill the viewer. hold a moment, and then:
with the moving through masses of thick, steamy
vaporous clouds, swirling about, rising boilingly up
from some unseen, underground source. the
continues moving through clouds.
and then... the vulcan landscape. harsh, strange
angular peaks and rock formations -- the barren, legend-
ary mountain home of vulcan masters.
spock's lean features instantly recognizable despite
unkempt, longer hair and the fatigue born of a long,
harsh discipline he has undergone. his robes, tattered
and dust covered, are that of a vulcan aspirant in
study with the masters. under the v'ger theme music
we hear a voice in ritual tones:

female master's voice
spock, son of sarek of vulcan...
and of amanda of earth...
diligently you have labored for
purification of mind...

gigantic ancient vulcan statues and ruins. in f.g.,
the stone platform on which spock stands facing a semi-circle
of three similar platforms. on them in regal robes are three
vulcan masters. the master in the center is a female, the
other two masters are male. the elderly female is holding a
cord and ancient pendant as if ready to place it around
spock's neck at an appropriate moment.

male master
spock . . . !

spock turns, giving a small contrite nod -- the ritual

female master
here are these sands, our fore-
bearers cast out their animal
passions. here our race was
saved by the first attainment of

male master
kolinahr: the final shedding of
all emotion.

female master
you have labored long, spock.
now receive from us this symbol
of total logic.

spock starts to kneel... the female master moves in,
intending to put the ancient pendant around his neck.
but spock now hesitates -- he's troubled as though
uncertain he deserves this symbol and waves the
pendant away. then, a faint reprise of the v'ger theme
music now causes the female master to look skyward.
she turns from this back to spock as she exchanges a
look with the male masters.

female master
come, give me your thoughts.

she kneels with spock -- lays her hands on his temples
in vulcan mind-meld position.

female master
our minds, spock... one and

their eyes close -- their minds meld -- then her head
jerks slightly, her features change as her mind feels
spock's reactions to the v'ger consciousness. a long
moment, then she opens her eyes, gets to her feet and
looks down on the still kneeling spock. then, she
casts aside the pendant she carries -- it falls into
the dust.

female master
this consciousness which calls --
it stirs your human half, spock?
you have not achieved kolinahr --
your human emotions are not fully
he will not achieve his goal with
us. his answer lies elsewhere.

the three masters leave -- spock watches them go, his
disappointment evident even in his stoic features.

closes in on his face as we again hear a frag-
ment of v'ger theme music -- spock again raises his
head and peers up into the heavens. hold on his face
a moment, then...
gleaming silver in the sun as it streaks toward the
position and hurtles past.
from this vantage, we can see all of twenty-third
century san francisco stretched out before us. in
the b.g., the familiar forms of the carefully preserved
golden gate bridge and transamerica pyramid building
serve as our only reminders that this is, indeed, san
the air tram (an anti-gravitational train flying
several feet above the ground) decelerates sharply,
settles to the ground with a whisper.
the doors opening, and various travelers (civilians
and starfleet personnel) leaving the tram, striding
onto the platform, continuing on their respective
ways. among the departing throng:
in admiral's uniform, grim, determined, moving through
the throng. now and then starfleet officers nod re-
spectfully; kirk responds with detached formality; his
mind is clearly set on something he is resolved to ac-
complish here in headquarters -- whatever the cost.
with him, to:
as kirk strides into the graceful starfleet hq building.
many people are about, civilians and uniformed person-
nel; most of them with some air of urgency. (note:
aliens interspersed among them, vulcans, blue-skinned
andorians, high-domed vegans, ect.) kirk continues on
when suddenly he reacts, annoyed as he sees:
a vulcan, lt commander; short, white-haired, grizzled,
hurrying along. kirk calls to him:

commander sonak... !

sonak turns with vulcan imperturbability to face kirk
who steps toward him

you've received your appointment
as enterprise science officer?

based, i am told, on your
recommendation, admiral. thank

why aren't you on board?

captain decker requested i complete
final science briefing here before...

here at starfleet...? the
enterprise is in final preparation
to leave dock...

which will require twenty more
hours at minimum, admiral...

twelve! i'm on my way to a meeting
with admiral nogura which will not
last more than three minutes.
report to me on the enterprise in
one hour.

to you, sir?

i intend to be there following
that meeting. report to me. one

and kirk turns, strides purposefully away. sonak gazes
after him, one eyebrow raised quizzically.
orbital drydock offices, rotating slowly but
perceptibly against blue-black of space. small figures
in spacesuits working on construction, with work belts.
beyond and below... earth. in the far distance we can
barely make out an orbital drydock.
the cluster is a fully-equipped dockyard engineering
center and computer drafting office.
an installation which also includes a double position
transporter, in which we see the transporter effect
begin. with the transporter crew is scott. he's with
a technician, busy with a piece of complex circuitry.
then he turns, sees that it is kirk beaming in here.
as kirk materializes, steps off the transporter plat-
form, scott moves quickly to him.
the starship engineering officer clearly surprised to
see kirk here. kirk has the same look of grim de-
termination we just saw in the headquarters building.

admiral, i've been hoping to see
you. maybe you can get through
to those thick heads in starfleet

why aren't the enterprise
transporters in operation, mister

we're hoping it's only a temporary
problem, admiral...

see that it is.
take me over, please.

scott is now eying kirk just a little warily as he fol-
lows him into the pod. kirk's determined expression
suggests that some chips are going to fly and scott
does not want to become one of them.

admiral, the enterprise has just
finished eighteen months redesign-
ing and refitting. she needs
testing, a shakedown...

mr. scott, there's an alien object
with unbelievable destructive
power less than three days away
from this planet...

kirk hits a button on the travel pod panel -- the air-
lock doors slam closed behind them. then, stepping im-
mediately to the front observation window:

... the only starship in
interception range is the
enterprise! ready, or not, she
launches in twelve hours!

scott throws kirk an appalled look but is now occupied
in sealing the outer pod door and manipulating drive
controls. continues to pull back to reveal front of the
pod and arms of the office complex as pod disconnects
and starts to move.
continues to pull back to reveal front of the
pod and arms of the office complex as pod disconnects
and starts moving.
as it moves way from the office complex. we can
see the jet flames of its tiny thrusters as it cir-
cles around, heads off (toward the distant orbital
dry dock). scott nervously eying kirk, and finally deciding to
make one more effort:

the crew hasn't had near enough
transition time with all the new
equipment. and the engines,
admiral: they've yet to be even
tested at warp power. add to
that, an untried captain...

two and a half years as chief of
starfleet operations may have
made me a little stale, mr. scott
-- but i wouldn't exactly consider
myself 'untried.'

it takes scott a moment to comprehend, and kirk smiles
now, nods:

they gave her back to me, scotty.

scott peers at him, genuinely surprised -- and pleased.

"gave' her back, sir...? i doubt
it was that easy...
but any man who could manage such
a feat, i wouldna dare disappoint.
she'll launch on time, sir...
and she'll be ready.

and he clasps kirk's elbow affectionately, then gestures
kirk to look out the pod window.
as he looks out: the blue-black of orbital space.
scott is well aware of what the enterprise means to
kirk. as scott maneuvers the pod to provide the best
perspective, kirk peers through the observation window,
craning his head, hungry for his first glimpse of the
starship. scott is watching him, immensely pleased.

as we see the drydock and more of its detail, and a
hint of what is inside.
past kirk and scott the corner of the drydock becomes
larger -- we begin seeing more of it. and then the
merest glimpse of what is inside the drydock: the
enterprise slips into view.
as he watches, his face reflecting all of it: the awe,
the wonder, the romance, the obsession. the one comp-
lete love of his life. and with that love regained,
he is becoming more fully alive again.
kirk looks at scott; for a moment both hold each other's
eye. scott knows precisely how kirk feels. both turn
to the window again.
now dominating the screen -- the awesome, symmetrical
bulk of the starship comes fully into view. and it
dominates kirk's -- and our emotions.
the great ship dwarfs everything. the drydock becomes
a fragile filigree framing the ship's great curved
bulk. the tiny pod continues to move along it.
small automated welding devices move along the gird-
ers, working with brief, bright orange-white flares.
in other areas of metal lace structure, supplies and
equipment are being loaded onto the ship. the pod
continues moving (scott is giving kirk time to see all),
watched carefully by the tiny figures of supervising
technicians on the drydock. now the pod moves toward
mating position. it closes in, secures itself to the
outer airlock.
scott completing the mating procedure, kirk turning
from the observation window. outside, the metallic..
click of the pod locking onto the airlock. now the
"whoosh" of the latch doors securing, the clang of
security bolts. it's all been a rare and delicious
moment for kirk, and his face shows it.
over the pod intercom we hear, "pod secured. pressure
equalized." scott moves the control to open the hatch.
a confusion of organized work and voices. the cargo
deck bustles with activity; supplies and equipment
being stored and installed.
kirk and scott are met by a nervous, perspiring

kirk and scott
permission to come aboard, sir...?

granted, sir. welcome aboard,
admiral... commander scott,
you're needed in engineering

sir, you'll excuse me...?

kirk gestures him to leave, and scott hurries away.
kirk stands a moment, gazing down at the cargo deck.
the crew maneuvering antigravity devices which move
heavy containers -- scrambles of activity at storage
holds and maintenance lockers.
kirk is drinking it all in. he's home.

sir, if you'll follow me, i'll...

i think i can find my way,

and kirk moves off, leaving the ensign gazing at him,
kirk enters angle and the doors snap open.
as kirk enters. the doors close. kirk waits a beat,
savoring this moment too. then, firmly to the control


the turbo-elevator hums with power as it begins hur-
tling up. on the wall back of kirk we see an electronic
diagram of the enterprise tracking the elevator's
speedy trip to the bridge.
a confusion of activity and voices. pieces o equip-
ment in a state of disarray: consoles open, fiber
optic tubes unconnected, viewing screens dismantled.
it's a frantic, desperate scene -- a ship and crew to-
tally unprepared. in the midst of this: alien
ensign is assisting uhura (lt. comdr. stripes)deftly
working her communications station, ad libbing
"... hailing frequency four, check. hailing frequency
five, will someone please check me?" at the helm,
sweat-soaked sulu (lt. comdr stripes) has a service
plate open, is peering inside to make delicate adjust-
ments, ad libbing "... helm, now give me a reading on
four point zero zero six of full." and at the weapons
control, chekov (full lt.)argues with technicians who
insist photon torpedoes read "ready" while chekov
argues the computer is not relaying that information.
snapping open -- and there is kirk. for the moment no
one notices him, and he stands watching, remembering.
and then he moves forward toward the command center.
as she is the first to see him. she reacts,pleased.

captain... starfleet just
signaled your transfer-of-
command orders!

as everyone else is suddenly aware of kirk.
all work stops, with various ad libbed greetings from
the old crew: "admiral kirk..." "it's the captain...!"
etc., etc. but most sit or stand, simple gaping at
kirk, all quite awed. the old hands, uhura, sulu, and
chekov start converging on kirk. but he gestures them
back, speaking crisply.

i appreciate the welcome; i wish
the circumstances were less
epsilon nine is monitoring the
intruder; keep a channel open to
where is captain decker?

he's in engineering, sir...
he doesn't know.

kirk reacts with some exasperation, starts away,
addresses chekov:

mr chekov, assemble the crew on
the rec deck at 0400 hours. i
want to show them what we're

and kirk moves to the elevator, enters, is gone. the
moment the elevator doors snap closed:

i wouldn't have wanted to have
been standing in his way. he
wanted her back; he got her!

alien ensign
and captain decker? he's been
with the ship every minute of
her refitting...

ensign -- our chances of coming
back from this mission in one
piece may have just doubled...!

the entire complex a beehive of pre-departure activity.
engineering personnel (at least a third of them female)
coming and going, the platform-elevators (small, one-
man lifts to various levels) busy. a gentle but con-
stant hum and whirr flows from the engine core, to indi-
cate a pre-idling mode. there will be continual ad
libbed conversation among the technicians.
now the engine room door opens and kirk steps into the
area. he stands a moment observing the activity. a
grizzled engineering chief pushes a huge condenser on
an anti-grav device past irk with a respectful "watch
it, sir" admonishment. kirk moves on to:
at the middle of the power shaft. very noisy here,
and a continual cacophony of computerized and human
voices calling off equipment checks. and grouped
around a section of burnt-out circuitry are willard
decker, captain's stripes, handsome, in his early
30's; scott, and two technicians. decker and scott
are working feverishly uncoupling the device,
probing its innards. decker has discovered the problem,
removed several transistor-type parts, taps them
with a pencil-sized sonic analyzer.

i thought so! see... the trans-
porter sensor was not activated...

aye, you were dead right about
clearly, put a back-up sensor into
the unit.

as the technician prepares to install the device,
scott glances up to see kirk.
he looks from decker to kirk in acute embarrassment
(so that we should realize scott hasn't mentioned
kirk's taking over to decker). decker now notices
kirk, reacts pleased.

admiral kirk...
we're getting a top brass send
she'll launch on schedule if we
have to tow her out with our bare
hands. right, scotty?

aye, sir, that we will...

will, let's go over here and

he indicates corner. decker glances bemusedly at
kirk, then turns to scott:

let me now when the back-up is
in place.

as scott ad libs a glum "aye, sir," and watches them
walk across the chamber.

just a little quieter here, with kirk and decker arriv-
ing, and decker saying blithely:

all due respect, sir, i hope
this isn't a starfleet pep talk;
i'm just too busy.

kirk eyes decker -- then decides the best way to say
it is plainly, directly.

i'm taking over the center seat.
i'm sorry, will.

you are what...?

i'm replacing you as captain of
the enterprise.

decker seems shocked into silence; he can only peer
at kirk who reaches tentatively as though to clasp a
paternal hand on decker's shoulder, then withdraws it
and continues quickly.

you'll stay aboard as executive
officer... a temporary grade
reduction to commander.

-- you, personally, are assuming


may i ask why?

my experience -- five years out
there dealing with unknowns like
this -- my familiarity with the
enterprise, this crew...

admiral, this is an almost totally
new enterprise. you don't know
her a tenth as well as i do.

scott, working on the relay, but continually glancing
at kirk and decker with worried concern, as kirk

that's why you're staying aboard.
i'm sorry, will.

no, admiral. i don't think you are;
not one damned bit. i remember
when you recommended me for this
command. you told me how envious
you were, and if only you could
find a way to get a starship
command again. well, sir, it looks
like you found a way.

kirk is silent a moment, peering levelly at decker,
who returns the gaze with equal intensity. then:

report to the bridge, commander.

decker exits. kirk waits, collecting his composure
as he watches him go. then kirk turns to glare at
scott. interrupted by a flare as something shorts
out at the mechanism where scott and decker had been
working. technician (clearly) reacts, hits an inter-
com button fast:

transporter room, come in!
redline on the transporters,
mister scott!

scott whirls to a console fast, speaks urgently!

transporter room, do not engage!
do not....

too late; they're beaming now!

kirk is exiting on a run, followed by scott.

an unusually defective looking transporter effect in
progress, alternately flashing and glowing -- even the
transporter sound seems wrong, as if struggling to
overcome some problem. at the console, chief rand and
assistant are reacting in surprised, near-horror as
they attempt vainly to save the situation.

starfleet, override us!
override...! yank them back!

suddenly, from rand's console,a violent glare -- a
protesting sound from the circuitry. and on the con-
sole a red-warning light now begins flashing.

starfleet voice
unable to retrieve their pattern,

rand reacts in real horror now as human forms begin to
faintly materialize, then fade away, then reappear in
faintly misshapen form as she frantically works con-
trols. kirk enters fast, steps to the console to
assist rand; scott has also come in and moves to the
console, brushes aside the asst. chief, and begins
manipulating the additional controls himself.

we're losing the pattern...!

starfleet, boost your matter gain;
we need more signal!

oh, no! they're forming!

with the human forms fluttering into fuller and fuller
materialization, frighteningly, horribly misshapen. we
recognize one form as the vulcan, sonak -- the other a
human woman. they materialize; we hear a moan form
from the vulcan -- the woman's scream of pain. then,
all at once, the half-materialized bodies are gone;
the transporter chamber is empty.

oh, my god...!

gazing, horrified, at the empty chamber.

starfleet, do you have them?

a mutter of utter, vacant silence -- and kirk and
scott look at each other again, their pained faces
presaging the answer they already know:

starfleet voice
enterprise... what we got back
didn't live long. fortunately.

another moment of stunned silence, and then kirk hits
the transmission button -- fighting to control his
voice as:

starfleet... kirk. please...
express my condolences to their
families. commander sonak's
can be reached through the vulcan
there was nothing you could have
done, rand. it wasn't your fault.

and before rand can answer, kirk leaves the room.
as kirk steps out, and the doors snap closed behind
him. in the corridor the furor of the hurried depar-
ture is, as everywhere, quite evident: crew members
move back and forth. but kirk does not see them; his
mind is tormented by the transporter accident -- was
there something he should have done, could have done,
to prevent it? should he launch on schedule with the
starship this unready? has he done right in yielding
to this terrible needs for starship command again,
forcing starfleet to give her to him? would decker's
knowledge of the new design have prevented the acci-
kirk reaches a corridor intersection, looks around,
realizes he's lost track of where he is. a passing
yeoman stops in response to his puzzled expression.

turboshaft eight...?

back that way, sir.

she's indicating back the direction from which kirk
came. he nods his thanks, turns and moves back down
the corridor.
hurrying down the corridor. the two face each other
a silent moment, decker studying kirk curiously.

we'll have to replace commander
sonak. i'd still like a vulcan
there, if possible...

none available, captain. there's
no one in fact, who's fully rated
on this design.

you are, mister decker. i'm
afraid you'll have to double as
science officer.

and kirk moves on, decker stands gazing reflectively
after him.
but this time, we hear gasps of incredulity from
many throats (an audience), and various ad libbed com-
ments: "my god...!" "i don't believe it...!" "what
could it be...?" etc., etc.
and then, immediately following this, on the viewer:
we see that all this was being viewed by the crew
members (aliens included) assembled on the rec deck.
the recreation deck is one of the largest areas on
the ship, several deck levels high, a part of one
wall consisting of picture windows, through which can
be seen sections of the drydock structure outside.
on another wall is a large viewer, on which was just
shown the klingon transmission. leading off and away
from this deck area are what are obviously other
specific recreation areas -- gymnasiums, food centers,
game rooms, lounges, etc.
as the crew members chat in low, grim tones -- kirk
(now with captain's stripes) appears. as he comes
into view, the two hundred or so crew below go silent.
kirk grimly indicates the now blank viewer:

that's all we know about it;
except that it's now 2.2 days
from earth. enterprise is the
only federation starship that
stands in its way.

as the finds various faces: human, alien; most
young, all intelligent, forthright -- anxious. kirk
has paused a moment, now continues.

we assume there is a vessel of
some type at the heart of the
cloud. our orders are to intercept,
investigate; and take whatever action
is necessary... and possible.
...we can only hope that the
life form aboard that vessel
reasons as we do.

standing near an intercom, which just then has emitted
a bosun's whistle intercom signal.

bridge voice
bridge to captain. priority
signal from epsilon nine --

kirk leans over to the intercom, speaks into it:

put it on the viewer here...!

as all eyes turn to the viewer which fades into a view
of commander branch, in the epsilon 9 monitor room.
branch is tense, reflecting extreme urgency. near
branch, working intently at the console are the female
lieutenant and a technician.

enterprise... the cloud is
definitely a powerfield of some
kind... measures... my god!
over 82 a.u.'s in diameter...
must be something incredible
inside there generating it.
we're transmitting linguacode
friendship messages on all
frequencies. no response.

i have a null reading at the
center of the 'cloud,' sir.

definitely something inside..
there but all scans are being
reflected back.
receiving an odd pattern now..
they seem to be reacting to
our scans, sir.

some kind of energy surge...
enterprise... they could be
mistaking our scans as a
hostile act...
deflectors, emergency full!

branch hits an alarm button; we hear alarm klaxon
sounding. the viewer image distorts, clears again
while branch -- facing his viewer, continues urgently:

we are under attack...!

external view...!

as the image of branch is immediately replaced by an
external view of the plantoid, and the luminescent
cloud (at about the same distance from which the
klingon cruisers were attacked).
then it strikes the plantoid with full, cataclysmic
force. the viewer image breaks up -- and immediately
the entire starfleet base becomes a maelstrom of flar-
ing energy, shattered structure, flying debris. and
then, all at once, there is nothing -- empty space,
epsilon 9 is gone. we see only the stars; and the
mysterious luminescent cloud moving across the distant

viewer off.

as the viewer goes blank, all still facing the screen.
then kirk turns to the room as if to comment. then he
stops -- nothing he can say will add at all to what
they've just seen. instead:

pre-launch countdown will
commence in forty minutes.

the scene they have just witnessed still vivid in their
minds as they gaze somberly up toward kirk who is exit-
ing. the bridge crew follows him out. not a word is
said as the remainder of the crew waits another moment,
then begins to disperse toward their duty stations too.
spectacular orbit view of the giant starship in the
process of release. beyond us, in half light, earth
looms huge. the dock welders are gone; the supply pods
float away from the ship. little tongues of blue flame
spurt from the ship's maneuvering jets.
as the large dock umbilical is released, floats free of
its starship attachment. dock departure is imminent.
kirk in the center seat, intently studying the naviga-
tion console in front of him (at the navigator's
station, which is unoccupied.) other bridge personnel
are busy with their pre-launch duties.

transporters room and chief
engineer scott report trans-
porter system fully repaired
and now functioning normally,

dock signals clear, captain.

rely we are holding position
awaiting final crew replacements.

captain, transporter personnel
reports the navigator...
... lieutenant junior grade ilia
is already aboard,
and en route to the bridge.

as decker (now wearing commander stripes) reacts,
almost startled, and uhura continues:

she's a deltan.

uhura's tone and expression convey "deltan" in a
certain, special manner.

and there are no finer navigators
in starfleet, commander.

the last is interrupted by:
as they snap open, and there emerges a breathtakingly
beautiful young woman (uniformed as a navigator lieu-
tenant) who strides purposefully onto the bridge. a
stunning figure, but hairless, entirely bald but or
delicate eyebrows and eyelashes. her bald head is not
at all unattractive, in fact exudes an aura of sensual
nudity. indeed, her whole being exudes sensuality.
(this is a racial characteristic, not a deliberate
presence.) she approaches kirk

lieutenant ilia reporting for
duty, sir.

welcome aboard, lieutenant.

as ilia starts to speak, suddenly stops: she has just
then noticed decker, who has stepped from his station
to face her. for an electronic moment their eyes meet,
hold in unquestioned recognition.

hello, ilia.


kirk has observed this with surprise and some concern
(it presages possible complications). decker turns to
kirk, slightly uncomfortable at this.

i was stationed on the lieutenant's
home planet some years ago...

ilia looks from kirk back to decker, puzzled at his
sleeve stripes.

'commander' decker?

our exec and science officer...

captain kirk has the utmost
confidence in me.

kirk flashes a hard glance at decker, then toward
ilia too.

and in you, too, lieutenant.

my oath of celibacy is on record
captain. may i assume my duties?

while respectful, her tone of voice has been just as
firm as kirk's.

by all means.

receiving a message, now relaying it.

captain, starfleet reports our
last six crew members ready to
beam up...
... but one of them is refusing
to step into the transporter.

just as kirk a moment before was tense, now suddenly
he's relaxed again; he rises.

oh? i'll see that he beams up...!

and he hurries from the bridge, onto the elevator, is
gone. a moment of puzzled silence, then:

mr. sulu, take lieutenant ilia
in hand.

yes, of course...
your pre-programming is already
set in, lieutenant.

sulu has almost tripped getting out of his chair. he
starts offering ilia his hand, then thinks better of
it, withdraws it abruptly, immediately busies himself
punching out equations on her console... ad libs,
"it's all on the computer. you'll have no problem..."
sulu is nervous, fluttery around this lovely creature --
now hits a wrong switch. produces a beeping sound which
he fumbles to shut off. she smiles; speaks quietly,

i'm sworn to celibacy, mister
sulu. that makes me as safe
as any human female.

sulu catches her eye but before he can reply, decker has
moved in beside ilia.

i now the captain meant no person-
al insult.

i would never take advantage of
a sexually immature species.
you can assure him that's true,
can't you?

clearly, the remark carries special, personal

kirk entering as rand and her assistant electronically
list the last of the five arrivals who are leaving the
transporter chamber. kirk calls through intercom to
the last arrival, a young female yeoman.

yeoman, what was the problem
down there?

he insisted we go first, sir.
said something about first seeing
how it scrambled our molecules.

thank you, yeoman
starfleet , this is captain kirk.
the officer is to be beamed up

a moment, then again the generating humming, and then
the familiar beaming effect. and then you see mccoy!
he fully materializes. he looks himself over as if in
pleased surprise he is still in one piece. pans
mccoy from the transporter chamber to kirk who is hav-
ing a hard time containing his amusement and delight.

well, for a man who swore he'd
never return to starfleet...

what happened, captain, sir, was
that your revered admiral nogura
invoked a little known -- and
seldom used -- reserve activation
... in simpler language, captain,
sir, they drafted me!

they didn't...!

kirk has offered his hand, but mccoy is already flaring:

this was your idea! it was
your idea, wasn't it!

bones, there's a 'thing' out
there --

-- why is any object we don't
understand called a 'thing'?

-- headed this way. i need you...

were you behind this?

bones, i need you badly.

kirk extends his hand again; mccoy delays some moments
-- then finally responds. and once done, it is the long
hand clasp of two old friends reunited despite their
differences. now mccoy turns to rand.

permission to come aboard, sir?

permission granted, sir!

and mccoy moves toward the door, grumbling:

i hear chapel's an md now; i
need a top nurse, not a doctor
who'll argue every diagnosis...
and --

even when he's in the corridor his grumbling trails
after him.

... they've probably redesigned
sickbay, too. engineers love to
change things.

as he gazes fondly after the grumbling mccoy, and now
turns to the intercom, flips it on:

all decks, this is the captain.
prepare or immediate departure.

bulkheads closing, feed lines disengaging, main
engines hum into life, crew personnel hurrying to
launch stations. shots of cargo deck, down to
engineering section slamming shut. drydock area
clearing, work lights go out, warning lights go on.
all flight positions manned, ready.

dock control reports ready, sir.

helm ready, sir.

orbital departure on plot, sir.

yard command signaling clear,

maneuvering thrusters, mister

maneuvering thrusters, sir.

hold station.

thrusters at station-keeping, sir.

the starship within the drydock, but now the maneuver-
ing -- thrusters spurt pinpoints of blue-lame. the
drydock is ready for the starship's departure -- not
a single pod or shuttlecraft in sight. the starship
looms majestically within the lacework girders.
as kirk hesitates just an instant, seems to hold his
breath. then:

thrusters ahead, mister sulu.
take us out.

the maneuvering -- thrusters spurt more blue flame.
the enterprise begins moving, dominating screen as
it moves majestically from the drydock.
emphasizing fine detail reality of both drydock and
starship as saucer section emerges. tiny space-
suited human figures watch the departing ship.
holds on starship until completely clear
of the orbital dock.
here in engineering section, the engine throbbing
slowly builds to a thundering sound. a glow from
the central unit indicates anti-matter intermix
underway. the engineering section shudders as the
great engines draw more and more power.

intermix set, bridge, impulse
power at your discretion.

as he hesitates just an instant. this is the moment
he's awaited, and to him it is equally as sensuous
and gratifying as making love -- which, perhaps, he
is -- to his mistress: the enterprise.

impulse power, mr sulu.
ahead warp point-five.

the maneuvering jets turn off, the impulse drive glows.
the enterprise begins moving perceptibly faster --
behind her, the drydock diminishing rapidly in size.

departure angle on viewer.

departure angle.

we see viewer image switch to a departing view of
lovely bluish, cloud-laced image of earth as it grows
smaller, smaller, dwindling quickly as the starship
gathers speed.

viewer ahead.

and viewer image switched to show the star patterned
space ahead.
with its colorful rings and multiple moons filling a
major portion of the frame.

captain's log, stardate 7412.6.
2.7 hours from launch...

all hands tense with the excitement of the journey,
on the viewer saturn -- and its rings -- are falling
away (behind us). over this:

... in order to intercept the
intruder at the earliest possible
time, we must now risk engaging
warp drive while still within the
solar system...

end of log.
punching in equations on his console, reaching a

captain, assuming we have full
warp capability, accelerating to
warp seven on leaving solar system
will bring us to ip with the
intruder in twenty point one hours.

checking her console.

science officer's computations
confirmed, sir.

and decker and ilia glance at each other -- and again,
you know there is something more than casual in this.
as they open, and mccoy appears, walks over to kirk
who swings his chair around to face him. mccoy is
his usual dour self.

well, bones, do the new medical
facilities meet with your

they do not. it's like working
in a damned computer center.

programming ready?

program set for standard warp
entry, captain...

kirk starts to swing his chair to normal position --
decker calls:

... but i still recommend
further simulation study.

mister decker; every minute
brings that object nearer earth!
engineering! stand by for
warp drive.

mccoy is watching kirk, a bit surprised at his abrupt-
ness to decker.

scott's intercom voice
captain, we need further warp
simulation on the flow sensors...

engineer, we need warp speed now!

you're pushing jim. your people
know their jobs.

kirk flashes mccoy a glance of annoyance -- then back
to using intercom:
the main intermix chambers glowing with power; the low
rumble of the main engines coming to life.
the finds scott in the chamber:

hold one minute, please, captain --

he steps to his console where an asst. engineer is
working a computer, studying the readouts, punching
buttons, etc. scott stands over him, grimly observ-
ing. finally, the asst. simply shrugs with frustration.

that's it, sir; i can't do any

aye, lad...
it's borderline on the simulator,
captain: i canna guarantee that

as kirk, annoyed, interrupts scott on the intercom.

warp drive, mr scott.

mccoy still watches curiously as kirk turns to the

ahead warp one, mr sulu.

accelerating to warp one, sir.

sulu moves his controls forward -- everyone waits
tensely -- and then we hear the increasing throb of
the accelerating engines.

warp point seven... point eight
... nine...

we see the warp power effect build up between the en-
gine "nacelles" -- then the starship makes the quantum
leap into warp drive. the stars ahead shift, streak,
colors pulsating and changing as the shift exceeds the
wave lengths of the light spectrum -- and the stars
congeal into a mass ahead.
as the viewer shows the same warp drive effect. or
another moment all remain tense, and then all at once
relax, release their breaths. smiles.

warp one, sir.

kirk smiles, pleased, starts swinging his chair around,
at the same time calling:

mr. decker --

kirk never finishes the word. at that instant, on the
viewer, a wormhole distortion: a sudden spiraling of
stars and fluid light narrowing into a vortex into
which the enterprise hurtles. a space trap, a deadly
pandemonium of alarm klaxons, bells, voices:

wormhole!... get us back on
impulse power! full reverse!

enterprise has been caught in a matter-time distortion,
sucked into a cylindrical "hole in space" (the worm-
hole distortion), stars and planets become strange,
elongated shapes, with the enterprise drawn deeper
and deeper into the vortex.
the klaxons and bells continue, and the crew responding:

negative helm control, captain!
going reverse on impulse power...!

subspace frequencies are jammed
by wormhole effect!

computer voice
collision alert...!
collision alert...!

negative control from inertial
lag will continue 22 point five
seconds before forward velocity
slows to sub-light speed.

unidentified small object has
been pulled into the wormhole
with us, captain! directly

forcefields up full! put object
on viewer...!

showing (a magnification view) of a tiny point of light
directly ahead. meanwhile, kirk shouts an ad libbed
order to sulu: "go to manual override!" sulu ad libs,
"no manual response...!" (through all this, mccoy
stands frozen, waiting -- and expecting -- the worse.)
meanwhile, ilia has reached over to sulu's console,
hits a button, ad libbing, "navigational deflectors
coming up...!" and then with alarmed dismay:

navigational deflectors
directional control also
inoperative, captain...!

wormhole distortion has over-
loaded main power systems...!

the picture is switched through two further levels of
magnification, enlarging the object: an elongated,
distorted, pitted asteroid, tumbling toward the enter-
prise on a collision course.

time to impact...?

twelve seconds...!

mr. chekov, stand by on the

delay that phaser order! arm
photon torpedoes...!

who has just glanced, surprised at decker (for counter-
manding the phaser order) -- and for a split instant,
kirk seems confused. mccoy reacts with enlightenment
as, meanwhile:
the object even larger.

photon torpedoes armed...!

object is an asteroid, reading
mass point seven...
impact in eight seconds...
seven... six... five...

fire torpedoes...!

torpedoes away...!

as the starship's photon torpedo tubes eject glowing
balls of light energy, which seems to float toward the
oncoming asteroid, almost too slowly. and in these
brief seconds, the asteroid hurtles at the enterprise,
the huge pitted rock growing even larger than the ship
itself. it fills the screen, as the photon torpedoes
hit, disintegrating the asteroid into thousands of
fragments. instantly, these fragments pulverize them-
selves on the ship's forward forcefield and deflector
screens. the smaller pieces burn up on impact, clearly
outlining the ship's forcefield barriers.
the asteroid fragments still smashing into the force
field screen; the smaller bits like sparklers as im-
pact heat consumes them. the larger sections bouncing
away, the bridge quivering as they hit.
then one final gigantic fragment strikes, the bridge
shudders. and then the viewer shows only the normal
sub-warp effect: the stars ahead, relatively station-
ary; a feeling of motion, but smooth, visually normal.

we're out of it...!

we are at warp point eight.
position report, navigator..?

helm control restored, sir.

computing new interception

communications are normal,

negative damage report, sir.
no casualties reported, sir.

wrong, mr. chekov, there are
casualties. my wits!
as in 'frightened-out-of'...!

engineer... report status there.

with scott and his crew pouring over the instruments --
all seem very grim. scott, quite preoccupied, now
speaks into the intercom.

in just a second, exec; we're
picking up the pieces down here.

kirk seeming to collect his thoughts now -- he gives
decker a look, uses the intercom himself:

warp drive as soon as possible,
mr. scott.

scott's intercom voice
captain, it was our anti-matter
imbalance that created the
wormhole in the first place. it
will happen again if we don't
correct it.

that object out there is less
than two days from earth, mister
scott. we've got to intercept
while it still is out there!

scott's intercom voice
aye, we understand that sir!
we're doing our best.

as kirk flips off the intercom, rises determinedly,
faces decker:

mr. decker, i'd like to see you
in my quarters.
you have the conn, mr. sulu.

mind if i tag along?

kirk gives mccoy an annoyed look, then strides to the
elevator. decker, grim, follows -- mccoy brings up
the rear as they exit.
gazing worriedly at the just-closed elevator doors,
as sulu is punching figures into his console.

maintaining warp point
eight; i show our new heading
as 287 point three mark 105.

ilia's attention is directed toward decker.

lieutenant ilia...?

confirmed, mr. sulu. confirmed.

and she punches in some equations, then again peers
up at the doors where she last saw decker. she is
very concerned.
the doors opening, kirk entering, mccoy moves to b.g.
while decker stands attentively, waiting as kirk
turns to him.

explanation, mr. decker: why was
my phaser order countermanded?

sir, the enterprise redesign
increases phaser power by
channeling it through the main
engines. when they went into
anti-matter imbalance, the
phasers were automatically cut

kirk is surprised by this information, perhaps slight-
ly chagrined. after a beat:

then you acted properly, of course.

thank you, sir. i'm sorry i embar-
rassed you.

you saved the ship.

i'm aware of that, sir.

stop competing with me, decker!

permission to speak freely, sir?


sir, you haven't logged a single
star hour in two and a half years.
that, plus your unfamiliarity
with the ship's design -- in my
opinion, sir, seriously jeopardizes
our mission.

kirk reacts with anger. struggles for and regains

i trust you will... nursemaid me
through these difficulties, mister?

yes, sir, i'll do that.

kirk peers at decker, who stands facing him

then i won't keep you from your
duties any longer, commander.
yes, doctor?

kirk's last line has drowned out decker's "aye, sir."
mccoy says nothing, waits until decker is gone and the
door closes behind him. then:

he may not be wrong, jim.

decker moving toward an elevator -- the elevator doors
open, and there is ilia. she steps out, faces him.

was he difficult?

no more than i expected
not as difficult as this. i'm

that you left? or that you didn't
say 'goodbye'?

if i'd seen you again, would you
have been able to say it?


ilia whirls, moves toward her stateroom door, which
snaps open, then closes behind her. decker stands
gazing at the door, remembering, regretful.

get out of here, bones.

as ship's doctor, i am now
discussing the subject of
command fitness.

kirk's expression hardens.

make your point, doctor.

the point, captain, is that it's
you who's competing...
you pulled every string in the
book short of blackmail to get
the enterprise -- maybe even
that. and when this mission is
over, you have no intention of
giving her back.

i intend to keep her, is that
what you're saying, doctor?

it's an obsession -- that can
blind you so far more immediate
-- and critical responsibilities.
your reaction to decker is an

kirk studies him a beat; has mccoy touched a nerve?
something kirk himself might have been unaware of?
kirk starts speaking, but is interrupted by:

uhura's intercom voice
bridge to captain.

as kirk turns to it.

viewer on.

at his voice command, the viewer comes on with an image
of uhura at her console.

uhura from viewer
signal from a federation-registered
long-range shuttle, sir. she
wishes to come alongside, and
lock on.

for what purpose?

on the viewer, chekov's image replaces uhura.

it is a courier, captain. grade
one priority. non-belligerency

very well, mr. chekov, see to it.
viewer off.

viewer image fades. kirk turns back to mccoy whose
question of kirk's fitness still hangs there between
them. eye to eye - then, finally:

your... opinion has been noted,
is there anything further?

i hope not.

kirk nods, exits. mccoy watches him go, hoping his
point has gotten through.
traveling at a rapid speed; it carries warp-capacity
nacelles which dwarf the smaller to 10 position
shuttle fuselage. the hold on the shuttle
as it overtakes the enterprise, the enterprise com-
ing into view, and the shuttle slowing and beginning
to move between the starship's giant nacelles.

about the size of a fighter airplane floating in over
the vastness of an aircraft carrier. the shuttle
slows further, hovering now. then its fuselage pod
detaches from the warp drive nacelles -- the pod
moving slowly but precisely toward the starship's
command airlock.
as we hear the clank and whoosh of the airlock mechan-
ism. chekov is standing by with a security man.
a moment later the hatch slips open - to reveal
spock. a proud spock, impassively vulcan, almost
contemptuously aloof. his hair is now trimmed in
neat vulcan style; he wears vulcan attire simple,
civilian, utilitarian.)

permission to come aboard, sir?

granted, sir! granted!

spock is already moving out of the pod entry area, im-
passive, no greeting on his lips; no friendship in his

pulling away from enterprise.
the elevator doors open, and there is spock. it takes
everyone a moment to believe their eyes. then, the
bridge crew ad lib their surprise and pleasure.

spock...! spock, where...how...?

kirk, smiling, is moving toward spock with hand out-
stretched. but spock has already turned and moved
toward the science console where decker sits.

commander, if i may...?

it takes decker a moment to realize that spock wants
to take over the console. he begins getting to his
feet, throwing kirk a look. but kirk's attention is
totally on spock. and spock is already intent on com-
putations he is beginning to punch into the science
console computer.

i have been monitoring your
starfleet transmissions, captain,
your engine design difficulties.

spock continues to punch information into the science
computer -- a monitor screen image begins to show com-
plex equations which spock inspects -- he makes a
further computer punch out and inspects a second monitor
image of other equations. only then does spock seem to
become aware of kirk and decker standing there with
questioning expressions.

i offer my services as science

kirk starts to grin -- then remembers to wipe it off
his face as he turns to decker.

if our executive officer has no

of course not. i'm aware of
mister spock's qualifications.

mister chekov, log mister spock's
starfleet commission reactivated;
list him as science officer; both
effective immediately.

as they snap open -- mccoy and chapel appear. chapel
sees spock at the science console -- she moves in
quickly, overjoyed. even mccoy seems pleased.

mr. spock...!!!

so help me, i'm actually
pleased to see you.

but as chapel crosses to spock, her pleased smile
brightening her whole face, spock turns, dismisses her
presence with a cold disinterested glance -- chapel
stops, stands dumbfounded. spock gives mccoy a similar
glance - turns back to his console readings as:

that's how we all feel, mister...

the same cold glance causes uhura to stop in mid-
sentence. several grins directed toward spock are now
fading from bridge crew faces. spock has turned back
again for a last quick reading at the console and now
stands -- totally ignoring everyone else as he speaks
coolly, unemotionally to kirk:

with your permission, i will now
discuss these fuel equations with
the engineer.

kirk manages a nod, a bit dumbfounded himself at spock's
strange manner. spock heads for the elevator -- puz-
zled expressions from the entire bridge crew. then
kirk calls after him, very sincerely:

mister spock, welcome aboard!

spock continues onto the elevator without any acknow-
ledgment, leaves. kirk glances, perplexed, at mccoy.
mccoy, equally perplexed, shrugs.

never look a gift vulcan in the
ears, jim.

traveling past the stars, sub-warp. over this:

captain's log. stardate 7413.4.
thanks to mr. spock's timely
arrival - and assistance...

scott making an intermix chamber reading with a hand-
held timer-temperature device which emits signals while
spock now in regulation uniform and hair trim, makes
adjustments in the circuitry of a panel complex. dur-
ing the following, they will react as if they've solved
the engine problem.

... we have the engines rebalanced
into full warp capacity. repair
time less than three hours...

sulu at the helm, accelerating; just a touch of tense-
ness in crew as they move toward the speed which
earlier threw them into the "wormhole" effect.

... which means we will now be
able to intercept intruder while
still more than a day from earth.

stars accelerating as sulu calls off:

warp point eight... point nine...

the viewer shows the quantum leap into warp drive. the
stars ahead shift, streak and congeal into warp effect

warp one, sir.

the others wait, then show relief as:

warp two, sir... warp three...

he continues to seven.

scott's intercom voice
engineering to bridge... new
intermix balance holding steady.
she's not even straining!

where, first, shoots through the window, the
myriad of stars, space, the whole magnificent vista.
in the lounge, empty but for them, are kirk and mccoy
-- obviously awaiting spock, who enters and presents
himself cold and aloof as before:

reporting as ordered, captain.

sit down, please.

spock remains standing, addresses kirk:

sir, i would appreciate dr. mccoy
absenting himself from this

i want him here.
sit down!

for an instant, it looks like spock will refuse. then,
he complies but sits formally, rigidly. he ignores
mccoy totally.

you've reported that you felt
strong thought emotions. a
group of minds from a space
vessel? could you make out any
plan, anything to do with

negative, captain. i could sense
only what seemed an almost
omniscient pattern of perfect
logic. i can explain nothing
more; i understand nothing more.

kirk is clearly disappointed -- and a bit uncomfortable
about what he must ask next. he exchanges a glance
with mccoy, then:

also -- there was nothing in your
report about why you're here.

that inquiry invades my personal
life, captain.

spock, we've already guessed why
you're here...

i inquired about you -- learned
you were studying with the

although spock has been almost infuriatingly emotionless,
his expression shifts slightly. mccoy indicates this:

that flicker of emotion confirms
our guess. you failed.

your deductions do you credit,
doctor... if your puerile
curiosity does not.

and now, anger, spock?

spock looks straight ahead -- his face instantly com-
posed to almost total blankness.

i still contain fragments of my
human half.

and whatever you sensed out here....

... is my only hope of accomplishing
what the masters could not.

if you achieve perfect logic, spock,
you'll pay a price. it's given
your planet ten thousand years of
peace, but no poetry's been written
since then, no music.

spock has come to his feet fast - but kirk is on his
feet too, confronting him. during which:

let it drop, bones.
you are my science officer -- i'll
expect an immediate report on
anything further you learn or sense
from here on.

i have accepted service here as
a starfleet officer... sir.

i know this has been painful, spock.
for me too. thank you.

spock exits. kirk and mccoy exchange a troubled look,
then exit too as centers again on observation
window, the view of space there.
pushing red alert. the alert sounds; the red lights
begin flashing.

chekov's voice
red alert! red alert!

all regulars in position (different uniforms), extra
crew hurrying in from elevators to man the remainder
of the console positions. decker is making a bridge

full mag on viewer!

sulu hits a control -- viewer seems to zoom ahead and
in the distance we see a point of light which grows
into the luminescent cloud. the same as seen by the
klingons and starfleet's epsilon nine station. myster-
ious, beautiful, and menacing.


continuing friendship messages on
all frequencies, sir.

all decks and divisions confirm
status red.

we are being scanned, captain.

as kirk whirls toward spock's station, calls out:

do not return scan, mr. spock!
it may be misinterpreted as

intruder scans emanate from
the exact cloud center.
energy of a type entirely un-
known to me.

no response to friendship
messages, captain.

should i go to battle stations,

negative, we'll take no prov-
ocative action.

decker has reacted sharply, disapprovingly, to this:

recommend defensive posture,
captain: screens and shields.

... that could also be misinter-
preted as hostile, mr. decker.
cloud composition, mr. spock?

twelve power energy field --

-- twelve power?!

captain, we've seen what their
weapons can do. shouldn't we
take every possible precaution -- ?

mr decker....

captain, i suspect there's an
object at the heart of that cloud.

mr. decker, i will not provoke
an attack, if that order isn't
clear to you...

captain, as your exec, it's my
duty to point out alternatives.

a moment of thought from kirk.

five minutes to cloud boundary!

i stand corrected mr. decker.
navigator, lay in a conic section
flight path into the cloud center;
bring us parallel to whatever
we find in there...

the cloud has now grown so large it dominates the
entire viewer. sulu hits a button, reducing magnif-
cation. immediately, the cloud diminishes in size --
but almost instantly begins growing again. decker's
annoyance (with kirk) suddenly seems to dissipate as
his total attention is diverted to the cloud.
decker turning to spock

that measures twelve power?
ten thousands of starships couldn't
generate that much...

decker trails his words, realizing that spock isn't
hearing a word. spock's attention is on the o.s. main
viewer, totally absorbed by something he's feeling.
he is slowly rising from his seat, stepping forward --
kirk becomes conscious of this, turns and sees spock's
strange expression. before he can speak:

they have... they have been
communicating with us. i sense
... puzzlement. why have we
not replied?

communicated with us how?

spock shakes his head... then reacts as if sensing or
theorizing something further. he turns, moves quickly
to his console, begins there as if searching for something.
interrupted by another alarm klaxon.

signal medical alert, mister

computer voice
incoming fire. ahead. zero,
... mark, zero.
incoming fire. ahead. zero,
mark, zero.

showing a whiplash energy bolt streaking from the

forcefields now...! deflectors
up full!

commencing evasive
maneuvers... !

bridge begins to tilt.

forcefields and deflectors up
full, captain.

the whiplash energy bolt speeds toward the enterprise,
which veers sharply away now -- but whiplash follows.
with the whiplash energy bolt on the main viewer,
closer and closer -- heading straight-on for the star-
ship. from the bridge a cacophony of voices and
sounds, but all organized and disciplined with the
bridge lighting dimming and then as though traveling
the last short distance (actually several million
miles) in the wink of an eye -- the whiplash of energy
strikes. the bridge lights go out.
in the sudden darkness, the main viewer is all at once
a frantic, furious, pattern of green-white flaring energy,
accompanied by an explosive shrilling sound. it seems to
cling to the forcefields, the incredible energy of the
forcefield barriers.
as a sheet of green whiplash energy bursts from
chekov's console -- a lash of flame engulfs chekov's
arm. automatic fire control nozzles spurt foam over
him as he falls twisting and groaning in pain. ilia
reacts first, crossing quickly to assist chekov --
decker joins her, taking over chekov's console.
the sheet of writhing-green energy enveloping the
entire vessel, outlining it starkly. (and outlining,
too, the forcefield screens and deflectors -- batter-
ing at them, seeking some gap through which to
the bridge still darkened, and on the viewer the whip-
lash energy splattering the entire viewing screen with
green energy brilliance, forcing all to shield their
eyes against the impossible glare.
a smoking panel bursts into a shower of sparks and
flame, spewing over and past scott and his crew.

bypass...! alternate

as, first on the viewer, the whiplash energy bolt
effect clings another moment then begins fading. and
then it is gone. the bridge lights go on again.
elevator doors open. doctor chapel and medical corps-
men arrive and cross immediately to where ilia tends
to the injured chekov.

the new screens held...!

scott's intercom voice
engineering to bridge; we cannot
hold full power on forcefields;
deflector power is down seventy

over the following, we will hear captain kirk ad lib
order; "divert auxiliary systems power to deflectors!"
and scott intercom voice answer: "all auxiliary power
to deflectors, sir." meanwhile, chapel and corpsmen
giving medical treatment to chekov who is in agony.
chapel is about to give an injection.

no, i can stop his pain.

the deltan woman takes chekov's upper arm in both her
hands, kneading her fingers deep into nerve centers --
chekov's pain begins to quickly recede and he is almost
startled by the sudden relief. doctor chapel, now
spraying plasti-skin on the burned hand and wrist,
gives ilia a surprised, approving look and a flicker
of female friendship passes between the deltan and
earth woman. (setting up a later story point)
the energy brilliance gone now, we can see the cloud
is very close -- the closest we have seen it yet, and
the aurora effect is spectacular; a vast, dense blan-
ket of sparkling, flaring color.
whirling abruptly in his chair, addressing kirk:

captain, the intruder has been
attempting to communicate! now
placing their transmission on
the speaker...

immediately, from the speaker we hear a shrill, in-
credibly fast beep.

... frequency more than one
million megahertz at such high
speed their entire message lasts
only a millisecond.

chapel and corpsman are assisting chekov from the
bridge (we'll have seen that the remarkable plasti-
skin sprayed on his hand has completley covered the
ugly burn marks - he is even able to move his fingers
a bit). ilia returns to her station -- a relief crew
woman takes over from decker at chekov's console.
so we can see in more detail spock's monitor -- various
oscillating waves, and hear more of the shrill beeps as
spock manipulates his equipment, and continues:

i suspect our messages were too
slow for them to be noticed.
programming computer to send
linguacode at their rate.

decker has hurried in to assist the science console.
spock indicates a console area -- decker works there --
spock works another section of console buttons.
the cloud ever closer to the ship now, which is a mere
dot in space compared to the immensity of the energy-
seething, continuous color-exploding cloud. and then,
suddenly, from the cloud -- another whiplash energy
bolt. bearing down upon the enterprise.
where the oncoming whiplash bolt is seen emerging from
the cloud. in the b.g., alarm klaxons are sounding,
alert lights flashing, etc

here it comes...!

computer voice
incoming fire. ahead, zero, mark,
zero, point two. incoming fire.
ahead, zero, zero, mark, zero...

engineering... what's happening
to our forcefields?!

much frenetic activity here, previous damage being
repaired, the main shaft glowing blue-white, engines
throbbing at full power, and a harassed scott at the

systems are overloading, captain!
our shields cannot handle another

the whiplash bolt streaking toward the ship.

mr. spock?

impact in fifteen seconds...

spock -- decker assisting -- works frantically. spock
is clearly dissatisfied, shakes his head tightly.

transmit, mr. spock! now!

ten seconds....

as spock hits the "transmit" button, and we hear the
shrill beep sound (lasting but a fraction of a second),
and decker calls to kirk:


ilia's voice
... five seconds.

where the whiplash bolt is now brilliant, almost upon
us! then the whiplash energy bolt abruptly vanishes.
in the blink of an eye, the entire effect is gone.
relief, incredulity.

it appears that our message has
been understood, captain.

any reply from them?

negative, no reply, sir.

spock, have you sensed anything

spock turns, gives the o.s. viewer a glance. then he
shakes head.

the 'puzzlement' i sensed was
fleeting... minor...
... as if carrying a sense of
our insignificance, captain.

our... 'insignificance'?

all have reacted to this; kirk exchanges a look with
spock who nods firmly. then kirk sees that both decker
and sulu are throwing him a questioning look. in b.g.
mccoy and chapel have exited bridge with chekov.

we are obviously confronted by
a highly advanced mentality...
yet they cannot understand who
we are, or what we want.

but they understood our messages;
they broke off the attack.

they may have attacked only as
a warning to us, captain. to
keep away.

that would presuppose a feeling,
commander... compassion. i sensed
no emotion, only...
... pure logic.

kirk peers at spock hoping for some assistance on
the decision; but spock merely peers back at him ex-
pressionlessly: the decision is kirk's. kirk faces
spock one last beat, then turns and starts back to-
ward his chair, calling to ilia.

tactical plot on viewer.

where the image of the "powerfield cloud: changes to a
tactical plot of enterprise's conic flight path ap-
proach. it shows a large schematic of the cloud itself
as well as a series of faintly blinking schematics of
various recent positions and directional attitudes of
the enterprise during its approach. these blinking
enterprise schematics show that the starship has gone
from a head-on approach to the cloud into a (tech.
advice) skidding movement around the cloud (the star-
ship always heading directly toward cloud center),
with the last enterprise positions now showing it ap-
roaching the cloud from a quartering rear approach.

thirty seconds to cloud

opinion, mister. spock?

recommend we proceede, captain.

mr. decker... ?

i advise caution, captain; we
can't withstand another attack.

that thing is twenty hours from
earth. we know nothing about it yet.

decker glances around, moves close to kirk so only
spock is able to overhear:

that's precisely the point,
captain. we don't know
it will do. moving into the
cloud -- at this time, is
an unwarranted gamble.

how do you define unwarranted,

you asked my opinion, sir.

kirk looks at him, then at spock, who once more is
peering in momentary concentration at the viewer,
feels kirk's gaze -- and turns to him, again expres-
sionlessly; it's up to kirk.

fifteen seconds to cloud boundary.

viewer, standard ahead.

main viewer image reverts to the "powerful cloud."
all peer in grim fascination at the cloud another
moment. then:

kirk sits contemplating his next move. once again, the
decision is his. he looks to the viewer a moment, then:

mr. sulu, steady as she goes.

aye, sir.

as the enterprise slowly enters deeper toward the chamber
ahead. we see the sheer size of the cloud as opposed to
that of the small ship now entering unknown territory.
as the enterprise enters the cloud:
on viwscreen we see a vast array of images, spiralling
images, changing in size, shape, colour. its walls
spinning and turning, looping and twisting, as the
enterprise proceeds further into the cloud.
amazed bridge crew members can do nothing but awe at
the sight before thier eye's. even spock has turned to
view the sight now illuminating the view screen. kirk
sits pondering, amazed, thinking "what comes next?"
moving slowly through the maze of visual's seen from
the main viewer.
as the cloud obscures all now. everyone gazes at the
viewer, almost mesmerized by the shifting violet power-
field displays.

no vessel could generate a
powerfield of this magnitude...

instruments fluctuating, captain.
patterns unrecognizable.

sulu's voice

sulu peering toward o.s. main viewer, his eyes wide
with incredulity.
crew peering at o.s. main viewer with expressions of
near disbelief. similar reactions as kirk and decker
turn too, reacting to:
the cloud "aurora" effect
rapidly thinning -- in the "eye of the hurricane"
center of the cloud is the object which has stunned
the entire bridge crew.
rapidly growing in size -- already frighteningly huge.
totally alien in look. its enormous bulk is irrides-
cent, faintly glowing, suggesting that it is made up
of exotic combinations of matter, and energy far beyond
the scientific knowledge or ability of earth's 23rd
century technology. menacing and yet strangely
beautiful, both at the same time.
the object continues to grow rapidly in size as the
enterprise continues moving toward it. everyone is
awed; even spock, from whom we discern an involuntary,
impressed reaction. decker is with spock at the
science console.

incredible dimensions, sir!
... i make it as seventy-eight
kilometers in length...

all digest the dimensions, as:
opening to admit mccoy and chekov, whose face and hands
are taut with plastiskin applications. seeing the
object on the viewer (o.s. at this angle), chekov's
eyes open with wide astonishment. he crosses quickly
to his weapons--defense station, his eyes on the
viewer. mccoy, eyes also fixed on the sight, moves
to kirk's side.

it could hold a crew of tens
of thousands...!

or just one thousand, ten
miles tall.

evaluation, mister spock?

engrossed is spock in the main viewer image that he
appears not to have heard kirk, whose ad libs a sharp
"mr. spock...!" spock looks absently at kirk an
instant, then:

that vessel is generating a
forcefield measurably greater
than the radiation of the earth's

transmit image of the alien to
starfleet; advise we are attempting
further communication.

unable to make contact with
starfleet. our transmissions
out of the cloud are being
reflected back.

distance to object now seventy-
thousand kilometers...

we're closing in on it rapidly,
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post Feb 6 2011, 04:09 PM
Post #2

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concern reflected on the faces of others too. kirk
considers his next move.
traveling with enterprise as it moves on a
parallel--closing course -- alien continues to grow
in size. although it already seems an impossibly
large vessel compared to the enterprise, in reality
they are still tens of thousands of kilometers apart;
the incredible size of the alien is nowhere near being
realized yet.
tension high as -- the alien now appears so close that
its image more than fills viewer. considerable
tension of bridge -- crew members, throwing nervous
looks from viewer to kirk. how much closer?!

reduce magnification. factor
4, mr. sulu.

we're already two settings
below that, sir.

adjust parallel course, navigator.
bring us in to one hundred
kilometers distance.

very nervous looks now directed toward kirk. even
spock gives him a glance, a raised eyebrow.
the alien object appears a dozen times larger than
enterrise and still growing in size.

we begin to see alien exterior detailing which had
not even been suspected at a longer distance.
the enterprise is now quartering in toward the
intruder, coming closer and closer. the alien
vessel is still growing in size -- more and more,
its exterior appears to be made of substances never
before seen by a human eye -- substances considered
possible only in the wildest flights of scientific
theory -- plasma-matter, energy fields diamond--hard
in their power, solid sheets of subatomic particles,
crystalline-lace patterns which seem capable of
shifting their nature and rearranging themselves.
this time, the enterprise travels on away from us, as
its course takes it angling nearer and nearer the
gigantic alien intruder -- the starship dwindling in
size, growing smaller, smaller, smaller... until it
is a tiny dot compared to the enormity of the alien
we are coming alongside the mid-section of the alien
vessel, now so huge that only a small section of it
now completely fills main viewer frame.

one hundred kilometers...

hold relative position here...

kirk's voice is blotted out by a deafening, shrill-
ing sound, accompanied by a multi-hued point of light
which explodes into blinding intensity, obscuring
everything for an instant. overlapping this action,
we hear:

computer's voice
intruder alert...! intruder

the blinding light fades and in its lace we see a
strange "entity" shocking us with its frightening
appearance and its ugly-sounding throbbing hum of
power. it is about seven feet tall and resembles a
"blob" of raw energy in shifting patterns and colors
of deep, ugly hues of upper spectrum violet. yet,
it looks strangely alive. at the end of the "tendril"
(of light) is an "eye" (a small multi-colored device)
the bridge crew reacting hard, shocked and shaken --
the throbbing sound of the alien thing intensifies
as it begins to move across the bridge. suddenly, in
b.g., an elevator door snaps oen and two security
men burst onto the bridge, phasers drawn. chekov
shouts warningly at the men:

no weapons...!

but chekov is too late: first security man fires --
the blast harmlessly absorbed by the probe which emits
a screeching nerve-grating sound --- sends out a small
whiplash energy bolt which instantly envelopes first
security man in a purple glow (of implosion). second
security man has almost lifted his phaser -- but now
carefully, slowly is moving his hand away from his
purple glow fades, the first security man has simply
chekov, like the others, horrified, flips a switch
and the computer-voice ("intruder alert") goes off.
at the same time chekov speaks into his intercom:

security... do not send further

the probe is sending out snake-like tendrils to the
various consoles on the bridge.
these tendrils lash out in a cobra-strike movement,
the tendril-head seeming to enter into the console
affected -- at which time all monitors and instrument
lights there come on as if the probe is "reading"
each console function. the crew carefully stays clear
of the tendrils.
spock has risen, moving to kirk's side as he slowly
brings his tricorder up, very carefully extracting
its tiny sensor and aiming it at the probe.

no intruder readings on other
decks, captain...
can that be one of their crew?

a probe from their vessel...
a plasma-energy combination...

meanwhile, the probe is now hovering near chekov who
sits frozen, fists clenched, jaw tight.

don't interfere with it...!

absolutely, i will not interfere!

as the "probe" withdraws an energy-tendril from one
bridge station and "inserts" it into another console.

no one interfere...! it doesn't
seem interested in us -- only
the ship...!

kirk's words are never completed as suddenly all the
energy tendrils withdraw from all consoles and a
larger, more powerful-looking tendril lashes out,
snaking into the science console complex.

where, also immediately, all the console and computer
lights are suddenly flashing wildly, rapidly --
-- there is an incredibly fast exchange of high-pitched
bees -- the computer obviously in unauthorized commu-
nication with the probe!

computer off!

it's taken control of the

it's running our records!
starfleet strength, earth

as decker moves to the main power control, spock now
steps in, his vulcan strength easily brushing kirk and
decker aside. spock clasps his fists above his head,
brings it down in a shattering blow on the console. it
splits open! as the bridge lights dim even more, and
as the science console shorts itself out -- and off,
decker confronts spock:

we could have cut it off at the
main computer...

this served the purpose.

kirk has been giving spock a puzzled look -- spock now
turns abruptly, and:

as spock, in stepping back, accidentally brushes the
probe's energy tendril -- a flash of light at the
contact point sends spock sinning under the rail and
to the floor near ilia. the probe's energy-tendril
has withdrawn from the darkened science console, hov-
ers high over the dazed spock as if angrily seeking
the reason for the break in its computer contact.
spock starts to rise.

mr. spock, don't move...!

decker steps toward her, ad libbing a grim "ilia...!"
but he has no chance as:
the probe hovers over her, its whole mass seemingly
about to envelope her with a single tendril extended
toward her, somehow freezing her into immobility -
and then the entire probe dissolves in a blinding
flash of white, obscuring ilia. almost instantly
the white flash fades -- but ilia has vanished -- her
tricorder clattering to the deck.

helpless, shocked, gazing at the place ilia was --
but which is now empty.

this is how i define unwarranted!

and almost at the same moment a new bridge alarm
the alarm still sounding as from the giant alien ves
sel, we see strange, opaque energy patterns streaking
toward us. kirk vaults to the command chair, lunges
for controls, as decker races to the weapons-defense

the ship is under attack...!
man all defensive stations...!

forcefields, full remaining
strength...! total reserve!

appropriate alarm klaxons, and computer voices begin
sounding, and all this is lost in a sudden shrilling
sound (a constant, high-pitched tone). for a moment
the energy patterns are prominent on the viewer --
and then the patterns vanished and the shrill sound
fades -- and:
showing v'ger growing rapidly in size. the enterprise
is being pulled along the length of the big ship,
toward its "prow."

captain, we have been seized
by a tractor beam...!

get someone up here to take
the navigator's station...!
engineering... full emergency

chief difalco to the bridge;
on the double!

in a state of controlled chaos, all personnel at their
stations, the engine core glowing. scott is working
his controls, speaking into the intercom:

going to full emergency...
but captain, if we don't break
free in fifteen seconds, she'll
burn up...

as spock studies his readings, and:

we cannot break free, captain.
we do not have a fraction of
the power necessary.

delay that order, scotty...!
disengage all main drive systems!

spock peers in deep concentration at the main viewer,
trying to sense some clue. kirk glances at him another
moment, then turns to the main viewer himself, watches
in frustrated helplessness.
the starship being pulled toward the giant as though
on a taut cable. as we move closer, we see still more
intricate details of the incredible alien design.
as difalco arrives on the run, and decker ad libs to
her, "assume navigator's station, chief...!" difalco,
bewildered, wants to ask what happened, but no time,
and she quickly sits at the post, begins orienting
herself. meanwhile, decker has begun an executive
officer's bridge circuit, assisting with various con-
soles. kirk is glancing toward spock who continues
concentrating on the viewer, striving to comprehend
the myriad of thoughts he is sensing from he aliens.
mccoy also arrives on the bridge, takes in the chaotic
scene, watches the viewer grimly.

at the forward end of the giant, an odd-shapped "iris"
begins opening menacingly. and it is frighteningly
obvious that the tractor beam is pulling the enterprise
to the opening.
showing the unusual "iris" now almost fully open as
enterprise is drawn closer, closer -- through the
"iris" we now see (some of) v'ger's interior: a dark
void relieved only by strange flickering glows of dis-
tant energy field patterns.
the crew reacts with understandable awe, apprehension,
curiosity, as:

captain, suggest a maximum phaser
strike directly at the beam might
weaken it just enough for us to
break free --

spock replies for kirk: quickly, as though to make his
point convincingly:

break free to where, commander...?
any show of resistance would not
only be futile, catain...

as kirk reacts somewhat curiously to spock's remark,
but it is decker who articulates it:

we don't know that, mr. spock.
why are you opposed to trying?

before spock can reply:

they're pulling us inside...!

all face the viewer again, react, with mccoy who has
been observing all these reactions now galvanized
into action:

medical observers to all decks!

and he hurries toward the elevators, with him
a moment, then swinging back to:

kirk staring at the viewer -- the "iris" now fully open
so that the exterior of v'ger is no longer visible --
and all we can see is the monstrous void dead ahead,
which is looming faster and larger before our eyes.
and now we are inside.
enterprise now being pulled past the opening -- into
the ship proper. now we can see that the dark void
is actually a vast chamber, dimly and intermittently
lit by powerfields appearing and vanishing along the
vessel's inner walls, which are miles away in the
distance. and here and there in the chamber gigantic
energy displays erupt briefly with a certain symmetry
that suggests they must be part of v'ger's ower or
control systems.
kirk peering awed at the viewer, the incredible sight
of the chamber -- suddenly glances up to see that
spock is standing beside him -- decker nearby, turns
to spock:

why bring us inside? not to
destroy us; they could have
done that outside.

they could have many ways of
destroying things, mr. decker.

something about us puzzles them...
perhaps even concerns them.

reacting to a console reading:

captain, photic-sonar readings
indicate the aperture is closing;
we're trapped, sir...!

the starship is pulled inside, the "iris" is closing
behind it.

the viewer image changing from the huge dark chamber,
rear angle shot, showing the "iris" closing.

reverse angle on the viewer,

on the viewer the final glimmer from exterior space
as the "iris" closes completely.
all eyes on the viewer, finding one face after
another, the reality of the situation etched into
each face. then:
as spock turns from a reading:

the tractor beam has released
us, captain.

confirmed: vessel is floating
free. no forward momentum.

viewer ahead.

viewer ahead, sir.

ahead, the cavernous interior of v'ger.
kirk eying the main viewer -- decker watching kirk.

maneuvering thrusters, mr.
sulu; ahead one third.
full sensor scan, mr. spock;
they can't expect us not
to look them over now!

thrusters ahead, one third.

commencing sensor scans.

kirk rises, goes to spock's station.

the enterprise moving slowly forward in this vastness,
its running lights merely specks of light, candles in
the darkness. in the distance those occasional erupt-
ing power displays in distant locations, sizes, shapes
and patterns.
showing another persective of the above, and further
away glowing energy fields dimly illuminating the alien
ship's walls -- miles away. strange semi--solid light
shapes (some are "sensor-bee" swarms) traverse the dark-
ness in random directions. but in the distance ahead,
there seems to be an opening to another chamber.

something ahead, sir; looks
like another area...
it's closing up...!

sulu is indicating what appears to be a lace-bulwark of
powerfield patterns closing off the "chamber" in the
distance ahead. kirk, from the science station calls

hold station...!

thrusters at station keeping...

at his science consoles, working rapidly, shifting from
one set of controls to another. now he hits a master
control -- his console monitors flash, then go dark.


spock brings a monitor image on again, indicates a
(povill) pattern showing a line hitting something,
then reversing direction.

all scans are being reflected
back, captain. our sensors are

kirk reacts with disappointment, indicates the main

have you been able to analyze
any of this...?

i believe the light flares to be
energy fields -- undoubtedly part
of the vessel's inner mechanism.
a technology so incredibly
sophisticated that i cannot --

computer voice
intruder alert! intruder

reacting to a console reading:

deck four, captain; officers'

have a security team meet me at
deck four main elevator!

a moment's reaction from all at this, kirk hurrying
toward elevator, calling:

take the conn, mr. decker:
hold present position...

and spock rises, joins kirk and they hurriedly exit,
the swinging back to decker, his perplexed con-
cern (because of ilia).

where we see, behind the translucent stall door, what
is unmistakably the form of the nude female.
entering, spock slightly behind him - and one security
guard. kirk glances around the room, now glances at
the shower area and reacts as he sees the naked form.
the others react similarly, even spock cannot help re-
pressing an expression of surprise. a moment's uncer-
tainty as kirk peers at them, then he steps to the
stall door, hesitates another instant -- then slides
the door open.
kirk's eyes cannot believe what he is seeing:
standing in the sonic mist, naked but for a small
multi-colored button embedded in her throat. as she
looks at kirk -- and the others -- the men peer back
at her, speechless.

i have been programmed by v'ger
to observe and record normal
functioning of the carbon-based
units infesting uss enterprise.

kirk peers at her another nonplussed moment, then leans
into the shower to touch a control, his eyes fixed on
the lovely body behind the mist. he punches in a three
digit code. immediately a humming sound emanates from
the shower stall, kirk closing the door, but 'ilia"
remaining inside.
the humming sound just now reaching a gentle crescendo
-- through the translucent door you can see colors
enveloping "ilia's" form. and now the sound stops.
"ilia", attired in a leisure robe, steps from the stall,
into the room. she stands facing kirk, her face impas-
sive, eyes unblinking. he looks her back a moment,
then glances at spock, who is gazing at "ilia" in abso-
lute fascination. kirk addresses her:

who is...'v'ger'...?

v'ger is that which programmed me.

is v'ger the captain of the alien

rushing in, concerned:

jim, what's --

at the sight of 'ilia", mccoy's words die in his throat
-- and his trained eyes have instantly told him some-
thing is awry. he unslings his tricorder, aims the
sensor unit at "ilia". as he reads his instruments, his
face reveals the results (incredulity, fascination).
meanwhile, from the start:

v'ger is that which seeks the
jim, this is a mechanism...!

kirk stares at mccoy, then at "ilia" and realizes that
"ilia" is indeed non-human. and quickly:

where is lt. ilia?

that unit no longer functions.
i have been given its form to
more readily communicate with
the carbon-based units infesting

security guard
"carbon-based units"...?

humans, ensign lang: us.

why does v'ger travel to
the third planet of the
solar system directly

v'ger travels to the third
planet to find the creator.

stunned, disbelieving reactions as all four attempt to
digest this -- spock gazing at "ilia" with even more
rapt fascination. kirk, bewildered, addresses the

find the creator? what creator?
what does v'ger want of the
'creator'... ?

to join with him.

suddenly alert, addressing "ilia":

join with the creator... ? how?

v'ger and the creator will become

who is the creator?

mr. spock, be careful.

the creator is that which created

who is v'ger?

v'ger is that which seeks the

another moment of total exasperation, frustration, during
which "ilia" seems to be waiting politely, patiently for
any further questions. when none are forthcoming:

i am ready to commence my

doctor, a thorough examination
of this probe might provide some
insight into those who manufactured
it, and how to deal with them.

let's get her to sickbay.

and he grasps "ilia's" arm to escort her. but is as
though he has seized cast iron: immovable. mccoy is
thrown off balance merely by 'ilia's" remaining sta-
tionary. she ignores mccoy, addresses kirk:

i am programmed to observe and
record normal functioning
procedures of the carbon-based

kirk glances at mccoy, who is totally bemused, but then 256b
kirk quickly responds to "ilia":

the examination is a normal

you may proceede.

thank you.

scanning a "body". pull back to show mccoy, chapel,
kirk, spock and chekov -- standing over "ilia" who lies
prone on the table, the physicians moving the scanner
over her.

... micro-miniature hydraulics,
sensors, molecule-sized multi-
processor chips... and look at

in the b.g., decker enters, grimly observes the proceed-

an osmotic micro-pump... here
and here. even the smallest
body functions are exactly
and every exocrine system is
here, too --

chapel breaks off abruptly, noticing "ilia" is peering
intently -- almost with a glimmer of recognition -- at
decker. slightly disconcerted, chapel continues:

-- even eye moisture.

deck -- er.

as everyone reacts to "ilia's" utterance of decker's
name. it seems to make the deepest impression on
spock, confirming something he has suspected.

interesting. not 'decker-unit'?

"ilia" continues peering at decker with just a hint
of a puzzled frown, a glimmer of distant recognition.
it's the first time we've seen her expression look
anything but cool and bland. this results in the
quizzical rising of one of spock's eyebrows.
mccoy's examination now turns "ilia" away from the
others. spock quickly catches kirk's and decker's
attention, indicates an adjoining door -- they fol-
low him out of the room.
as kirk, spock and decker enter, the door snapping
shut -- and spock touching the electronic lock to
secure them. he faces the others:

captain... this probe may be a key
a key to the aliens.

it's a programmed mechanism,
mr. spock...

we have just seen that its body
duplicates our navigator in
precise detail. suppose that
beneath its programming, the
real ilia's memory patterns are
duplicated with equal precision.

they had a pattern to follow...

... they may have followed it
too precisely.

ilia's memory, her feelings of
loyalty, friendship, obedience...
might all be there.

also comprehending, and not liking it one bit as spock
and kirk are both turning their attention to him.

and you did have a 'relationship'
with lieutenant ilia, commander.

that probe in there -- in a
different form now -- is the
same thing that killed ilia!

commander, we're locked in an
alien vessel, six hours from
earth orbit, our only contact
with our captors is the probe.
if we can control it, persuade
it, use it in some way...

interrupted by the sound of someone trying to open the
locked door behind them. then a metal ripping sound
as they whirl to see:
with the metal buckling, tearing -- and a single
hand slicing the steel door like paper. it is the
"ilia" probe, her face absolutely impassive, her
whole manner incongruously benign. (behind her, a
startled mccoy, chapel and chekov.) "ilia" speaks
flatly, blandly.

i have recorded enough here.
you will now assist me further.

kirk exchanges a quick glance with spock. then:

the decker-unit can assist you
with much greater efficiency...

"ilia" has seemed about to object -- but now her eyes
hold on decker. then she nods.

carry on with your assignment,
mr. decker.

as decker looks at "ilia" who stands at the torn door.
you can read decker's mind: i'm supposed to persuade
that?! he turns back, finds kirk's eyes on him.
decker nods.

aye, sir.

"ilia" and a reluctant decker exit.

looking very troubled as they watch decker and "ilia"
leave. kirk notices.

spock? concerned about his

i am uneasy with that being
our only hope of more information.

spock exits.
floating in the vast, eerie, alien chamber -- sporadic
flashes of energy, erupting now and then. various
other effects. over this, kirk's voice:

captain's log. stardate 7414.1.
our best estimates place us some
four hours from earth. no
significant ilia memory patterns
within the alien probe. this
remains our only means of contact
with our captor.

the area dimly lit -- unoccupied but for a lone airlock
technician checking and adjusting instruments. the
moves past him to find:
his face fixed with grim determination, walking quietly
with obvious intent not to attract the tech's attention.
now he steals up behind the tech -- and in an instant
has applied a vulcan nerve pinch. the tech slumps over
his console.
showing a close shot of enterprise pictures, then pull
back slightly for an image of decker and "ilia" walk-
ing through the rec deck. pull back further to show
kirk watching this -- and with him is mccoy. they
continue watching a troubled beat, as:

all these vessels were called

"ilia" is giving the pictures a very interested look
as we hear in kirk's cabin:

uhura's intercom voice
bridge to captain...

uhura at her console, struggling to hear the signal.

kirk's intercom voice
kirk here.

in the b.g., spock's station a maintenance team
is replacing the broken science station computer.

a faint signal from starfleet,
sir. they have the intruder on
their monitors...
they show us... three hours...
twenty-four minutes from earth!

kirk's voice
thank you.

decker and "ilia", the rec deck unoccupied but for a
pair of wary security guards at a very discreet dis-
tance. they are near the pictures of the five enter-
prises, which should be featured in this shot, as
decker waves his hand about the huge room.

the carbon units use this area
for recreation...
what type of recreation does the
crew aboard your vessel enjoy...?

as "ilia" moves on into the room, decker follows:

the words 'recreation' and 'enjoy'
have no meaning to my programming.

decker peers at the lovely android with frustration --
and no little pain, for she is after all the exact
replica of ilia. she pays not the slightest attention
to decker's reaction, and begins walking about the rec
deck taking in (and, clearly, transmitting all images
to v'ger) the sights. they are near a game area (elec-
tronic games), and now decker points to one game,
switches it on -- presses button to activate its
lights and sounds. "ilia" watches interestedly as
decker operates the game.

ilia 'enjoyed' this game... she
nearly always won --

and he demonstrates again, as "ilia" steps to the
device, deftly hits some buttons -- and for just an
instant she turns to decker with a momentary glimmer
of recognition.
mccoy watching with special interest:

good! he's using audial-visual

but the words are not out of mccoy's mouth when "ilia"

this device serves no purpose.

she steps away from the game; decker's disappointment
is evident. so is everyone elses.


she needs something else:
something much more personal to
stimulate memory patterns. something
with a more emotional tie.

kirk reacts to this, reflective.
decker waving back toward the general area of the
enterprise pictures.

the crews of the previous
enterprises were also carbon units.
in what way is the life form in
your vessel different?

carbon units are not true life
forms... do those images repre-
sent how enterprise has evolved
into its present form?


carbon units have clearly retarded
enterprise's proper evolvement.

what is enterprise's proper

enterprise should not require
the presence of carbon units.

and with this she moves off, observing other rec deck
objects. decker moves with her; then:

enterprise would be unable to
function without carbon units.

more data concerning this functioning
is necessary before carbon units can
be patterned for data storage.

as he reacts to this ominous note; he stops abruptly.

what does that mean?

when my examination is complete,
the carbon units will be reduced
to data patterns.

this has been delivered with chilling blandness, and
she stands facing decker, almost as though waiting for
him to thank her. he thinks fast now.

within you are memory patterns of
a carbon unit. if i can help you
revive these patterns; you could
understand our functions better.

that is logical. you may procede.

realizing the difficult task ahead; the pain he will
the ship stationary in the chamber as now we see an
exterior hatch sliding fully open. up through the
hatch a circular airlock door opens -- and a tiny
figure in a thruster spacesuit emerges, steps into
space, slowly floats down through the hatch and under
the enterprise saucer section. in this and subsequent
views we will see that on the rear pack of his thruster
spacesuit is a flashing strobe light which regularly
emits the identifying signal of this particular suit.
(by which kirk will be able to see spock's position
even from several miles away.)
moving toward the until the features behind
the face mask are clearly identifiable: spock, his
face set in the same grim, determined expression, as
he touches his spacesuit transmitter control.

computer, commence recording.
captain kirk -- this message
will detail my attempt to
contact the aliens...

kirk entering, crossing uhura as she calls:

starfleet signals, sir, growing
in strength...
they -- have intruder on their
monitors -- it's decelerating --
powerfield cloud beginning to

confirm, captain. lunar beacons
indicate intruder on a course
into earth orbit...

sir! airlock four has been opened;
a thruster suit is reported missing!

get a fix on his position!

his features now set into an almost trance-like expres-
sion as he concentrates on the thought emanations.
then we see his head turn, he peers off -- then he
moves his thruster controls. we see the small blue
jets of his thrusters -- his spacesuit figure begins
to move off in the direction he was concentrating
his thrusters moving him across v'ger's vast chamber
then dropping down into a deep "trough"-like area
which stretches into the distance ahead of him. a
cloud of crystal forms (kirk's entrapment) become
visible to one side but spock passes them at some dis-
tance and does not attract them.

we can see more clearly now the point on the inner wall
of the trough toward which spock is heading. it is an
unusual combination of glowing forcefields which seem
to mark this point of the vessel as of some importance.
(here, also, we will become aware of "sensor-bee"
swarms, intermittently darting toward this same wall
from all points of the chamber.)
showing kirk in a thruster spacesuit, helmet being
readied by airlock technicians. mccoy is also here,
arguing with kirk:

... i don't want him stopped, bones;
i want him to lead me to whatever's
out there...!

and if that 'whatever' has taken
over his mind....?

then he'll have still led me to
it, won't he?

and kirk steps into the airlock door, hits a control --
it begins sliding closed behind him.
up through the circular airlock door as it slides open
-- and kirk's tiny spacesuited figure floats down
clear of the saucer.
seeing his face through the spacesuit faceplate as he
scans the darkness.

sulu's voice
bridge, captain. we make spock
as 26 mark 345 degrees off ship's

during which, kirk spots something.
spock's strobe blinker at a mile or so distance,
nearing v'ger's inner walls.

i have him in sight.

during which, kirk touches his thruster controls and
blue thruster jet propels him off in the direction
indicated. his thrusters come on for a longer period
of time as he accelerates to the higher speed necessary
to overtake spock...
the door snapping open, and "ilia", mccoy and decker
entering. then reveals chapel already inside,
looking through some female adornments she's found

i remember lt. ilia once mentioning
that she wore this...

... when we met.

clearly this is very painful to decker. meanwhile,
chapel hands the deltan headband to "ilia".

put it on.

"ilia" hasn't the slightest idea what to do with the
headband, holds it, runs her fingers over the jewels
and feathers embedded into it. chapel takes it from
her, places it on 'ilia's" head, now switches on the
light illuminating the dressing table mirror -- stands
behind her with decker, both watching apprehensively.
studying her image in the mirror, her face totally
blank a moment, but then breaking into a bemused
frown -- as though trying to remember. and:


on delta... remember...?

and it seems that "ilia" does remember. she peers at
her image, then sets the headband into its exact
proper position. then she turns and looks at them
with recognition.

dr. chapel...

as chapel smiles, pleased, and looks at decker who
stares at "ilia" nonplussed. this is ilia coming


and she touches his hand, runs her own hand over it,
and smiles.
decker is completely overwhelmed, struggles for words
and looks to mccoy for some kind of help. mccoy
realizes decker is losing himself in fantasy.

commander... this is a mechanism...

decker is startled, and for another slit-second he's
lost -- but then he realizes the reality, and what he
should do:
ilia, help us make direct contact
with v'ger...

i... cannot.

decker looks at "ilia's" hand still resting on his.

then tell us who v'ger is; where
he's from... w need your help.

for another moment "ilia" continues smiling at decker,
holding his hand. then, abruptly, the smile vanishes
-- the hand is released. clearly, she's again the
probe, as:

why have two carbon units entered

decker glances at mccoy, who shakes his head almost
imperceptibly: he doesn't know. but decker has an
obvious reply:

they want to make contact with

"ilia" peers at him blankly, allows him to continue
touching her hand, but obviously it means nothing to

does v'ger object to the presence
of the two carbon units?

the carbon units are of no
consequence; v'ger will determine
their purpose.

their purpose is to survive.

that is also v'ger's purpose.

decker's face reflects his bemusement:

you said v'ger's purpose was to
find and join with the creator.

that is how v'ger will survive.

as now, the bemusement changes to just the slightest

i wish to continue my observations.

kirk but a small object, thruster jets occasionally
spurting as he guides himself deeper into the trench
as he continues forward progress in the direction he
saw spock taking.
so we can see his face (through the plate), as he looks
ahead into the distance toward spock.
spock's strobe signal closer and spock's tiny space-
suited figure now becoming dimly visible as he moves
steadily toward the glowing forcefields of the inner
his attention fixed on spock, he never notices until
an instant too late an o.s. object; quickly he hits a
thruster control, and we see the maneuvering jet turn
him to the side as:
a swarm of strange-looking translucent crystal-like
forms on a collision course with kirk. (note: they
were traveling randomly, and are not deliberate ob-
structions. however, kirk's nearness now has attracted
them and the swarm of them heads in his direction.
kirk tries to avoid them; he hits a second maneuvering
jet -- but he overcompensates, and spins straight into
the intercepting swarm of them.
as the nearest crystal forms whip into shot, adhering
to kirk's spacesuit. he hits full maneuvering jets
now, seems to make some escape, but still more forms
whip in, adhere.


all eyes anxiously on the o.s. main viewer.

kirk's voice
... stand by, i may be in trouble...

sulu hits the viewer magnification control.
as the distant strobe flashes of kirk's spacesuit are
magnified closer, pulling kirk into medium long shot.
we can see the details of the swarm of forms adhering.
but we can see that kirk's spacesuit is now about half
covered with them!
expressions of bridge crew to reflect the horror of
what they're seeing as:

your phaser, captain...!
use your phaser...!

kirk's voice
can't... reach... phas --

airlocks two and four --
prepare to launch rescue
chief lang! get them out
there! fast!

mr. spock, the captain is in
trouble, directly behind you --
three hundred meters!
mr. spock!

looks of distress are exchanged.
spock's spacesuited figure moving toward the ,
as we hear:

kirk's voice
... spock...! ... need help...!
... trapped...!

no indication at first that spock has heard; his face
set with determination, his eyes fixed on his destin-
ation: the inner wall.

kirk's voice
... pressure on me...! ... can't
move...! spock...!

as kirk's voice stops -- and all that is heard now
is the heavy static crackling ominously. spock's
expression flickers, then he hits reverse thruster
jets, stops -- he turns to glance at the inner wall,
then his thrusters turn him so he can look back the
way he came from. but he cannot resist kirk's call;
he suddenly hits his thruster controls, then jets
flare, and:
as thruster jets accelerate him back toward kirk.
showing kirk's spacesuit completely covered, encased
in the blob. kirk is no longer moving. but in the
distance, facing toward him is spock!
with spock in the near distance, heading toward the
. as he approaches kirk, spock brings out his
phaser. now he hits the controls for the reverse jets --
he slows rapidly as he approaches kirk's now complete-
ly encased spacesuit. spock makes a quick phaser
spock levels the phaser carefully. fires. the phaser
beam strikes the blob form -- it shatters, the pieces
facing each other while hovering in space.

bridge, cancel rescue teams.
spock, what in the hell are you
doing out here!

i am seeking answers, captain.

answers to what, spock? our
dilemma -- or your personal one?

spock does not immediately reply, peers at kirk through
the faceplate a long beat, then abruptly looks away,
points off into the distance:
we can see what appear to be sparkling globules of
light darting toward the inner wall in the distance,
then disappearing there. (we'll see other swarms
occasionally too, coming from different directions --
they will later be identified as "sensor swarms" on
closer examination.)

captain, i believe there we will
find an indication of whoever --
or whatever -- is aboard this

kirk weighs alternatives, then pushes his thruster
controls and begins moving in the direction spock
their thruster jets flash, propel them toward the
point on the inner wall.
the most prominent area of the vast inner wall -- the
patterns on the wall here seem to glow with life.
the spacesuited figures of kirk and spock enter scene,
gliding slowly toward what seems to be the central
part of theses patterns.
as they approach and then we see the brief reverse
thrusters and then forward momentum stops; motionless.
then spock sees something, indicates.
now, we see that they are tiny, multi-colored points
of flashing light -- almost like swarms of bees.
they approach the inner wall at this central point
and seem to "disappear" through the orifice.
this "sensor swarm" has been coming from a direction
that will take them close past kirk and spock. then,
as it passes, spock reaches out quickly, grabs.
he turns to kirk, his hand closed on something.
spock opens his hand, retaining a hold on something
with his fingers. he brings it up to kirk's face mask
-- it's a tiny sensor, its multi-colors flashing as it
tries to escape from spock's fingers. and in this close
view, we see that this is a sensor very much like the
one we've seen earlier embedded in the ilia-probe's
throat hollow. then spock releases it and it darts
to join the sensor swarm near the opening of the inner
from this closer distance, we see that an opening ap-
pears in the wall, admits the sensor swarm, then closes
kirk and spock exchange a look. their thruster jets
ignite briefly, moving them in that direction.
closely approaching the inner wall now, timing their
movements to coincide with the arrival of another
"swarm" -- the wall begins opening. the "swarm"
through, the wall begins closing -- but spock and
kirk slip in before it closes.

the wall closing behind them, they are safely inside.
but as they stop their forward momentum, their eyes
widen with awe and surprise at what they are seeing:
the long "cave" chamber with its row of huge mediator
balls extending into the distance. to one side, the
gleaming crystal memory wall.
as spock makes a quick analysis and estimate of what
they are seeing. then, he takes out his tricorder
again, propels himself toward the memory crystals.
kirk follows.
as spock adjusts his tricorder through several readings.

it would appear that the atomic
arrays of these crystals store
information. a remarkably
efficient system.

and these 'sensor-swarms' collect
that data, carry it here.

new crystals: they must contain
the most recent data obtained --

and spock touches one of these new crystals (it will be
shinier, more pulsating than the others): another

profusion of faint images, but this time including a
pattern-like image of klingons, klingon vessels (the
ones destroyed by the cloud), and obvious starfleet
personnel -- and the epsilon 9 station. also, a

of the security guard killed by the probe. and ilia.

klingons... our epsilon 9 station
... and ilia!! they seem to be
more than just images...

exact patterns. the energy bolt
that hit them wasn't simply a
weapon -- it dematerialized them,
stored them. but why?

and he turns and begins moving on, studying the wall,
consulting his tricorder.
spock inspecting this area at which the "newer" crystals
are pulsating and glowing, and which appears to be a
termination of the crystal area, continuing on and dis-
appearing through the wall.

if this is their ship's data
banks, where is the crew? or
is their entire ship automated?

captain, i do not believe there
is a crew -- or that this is a
vessel as such.

a beat, as kirk reacts incredulously.

i am almost certain now that all
of this is v'ger -- i believe
that we are inside a life form,
a living machine.

spock turns his spacesuit, turns his tricorder out to-
ward the mediator balls, takes a reading in that di-
rection. then a glance to kirk.

i must attempt mindmeld with it,

spock touches his spacesuit controls; the thruster
jets move him out toward the mediator balls.


spock reaching the ball, halts his momentum and removes
one gauntlet, baring his hand. stretching the bare
hand toward a part of it which looks strangely "alive."
the very power generated from this area is clearly
affecting spock's hand. meanwhile, kirk has used his
thrusters to join him.

spock, if you're right, its mind
may be enormous...

but spock pays him no attention, his entire being now
focused on the pulsating glow of the "alive" area --
the moving in closer to spock, as he forces his
hand toward that surface, closer, closer.
watching, almost mesmerized. torn between wanting to
pull spock away from the wall -- and knowing that
spock must go through with it. for everyone's sake.
preparing for the ordeal, moving his hand to the "liv-
ing area," the invisible force even stronger -- but
spock's strength unwavering, and now he touches the
surface -- and it flares with strange energy at the
touch. and at the same moment spock' body convulses
as if tens of thousands of volts of electricity are
charging through him.
as he begins to shudder with the shock, the
continues into extreme close-up as we see spock's mouth
open -- he screams. into extreme close shot of
spock's eyes.
music in and up as we travel through abstract images
(per con pederson discussion). symbolizing v'ger's
incredible and complex store of mechanistic knowledge,
these images suggest patterns of atoms, molecules,
galaxies, dimensions of the universe beyond human
knowledge or comprehension. it takes only fifteen or
twenty seconds, but seems to span aeons, taking us
through micro-infinity and macro-infinity.
bridging back out through spock's eyes and into
angle on spock's face as he lies in a sickbay bed. his
eyes are open; he is staring straight ahead as if in a
catatonic state, completly unaware of his surroundings.
then doctor chapel leans into scene, moving a medical
scanner over the brain area.

now scanning pons area at spinal
nerve fiber connection...

mccoy at a console, watching readings he is getting
from chapel's scanner. kirk watches mccoy anxiously.

indications of some neurological
trauma--the power pouring through
that mind-meld must have been

before kirk can reply, they hear a laugh! an abrupt,
harsh, bitter laugh.
as all whirl to the patient area where it is obviouslyspock who has just laughed -- but there is no indication
of laughter from him now. a startled chapel has stepped
back away from the bed. spock seems to be attempting
to focus, orient himself as kirk and mccoy hurry to the


and spock reaches out a hand weakly., takes a surprised
kirk's hand in his. mccoy exchanges a surprised glance
with kirk, as spock -- clutching kirk's hand in friend-
ship and need -- struggles to summon strength to speak.

... is so far beyond v'ger's

with kirk and mccoy exchanging another surprised
glance (at spock's emotion), with mccoy gesturing kirk
not to question it.

were you right? spock? v'ger
is a living machine...?

a life form of its own; a
conscious, living entity.

a living machine...?!

we're living machines, too: protein

kirk nods at mccoy.

and it considers the enterprise a
living machine: that's why the
probe refers to our ship as an

if it thinks our ship is alive
what does it think we are?

an 'infestation' -- bacteria...

as spock turns to kirk.

i saw v'ger's planet: a planet
populated by living machines.
unbelievable technology.
v'ger has knowledge that spans this
and... in all this order... all
this magnificence, v'ger feels
no awe...no delight... no beauty...
i should have known...

kirk waits for spock to continue, but spock seems too

know what, spock? what?

but spock falls back, exhausted -- and mccoy gently
tugs at kirk, ad-libbing, "let him rest, jim..."
kirk shrugs mccoy away, addresses spock:

what should you have known?

no meaning... no hope...
and, jim, no answers...!
jim, it's looking for answers

what answers?

'is this all i am? is there not

just then an intercom signal:

uhura's voice
a faint signal from starfleet,
sir! intruder cloud has been
located on their outer monitors
for past twenty-seven minutes...
dissipating rapidly as it approaches.

immediately, sulu's voice:

sulu's voice
starfleet reports forward velocity
has slowed to sub-warp speed! we
are three minutes from earth's

i'll be right there...
i need spock on the bridge.

as chapel urns to a med tech, ad libs an order,
"dalaphaline, twenty cc's..." as the tech quickly sets
the hypo-injector, and hands it to chapel - and she
injects spock, the hypo emitting a fast, quiet hiss --
kirk gazes at spock just an instant as spock breathes
deeply, the drug clearly strengthening him. chapel
and the tech help spock from the bed, as kirk addresses

a machine planet...? sending a
machine to earth looking for its


kirk looks at him, then at spock -- on his feet now --
then at mccoy again:

'to find the creator,' the probe
said. find god...?

isn't that what we're all trying
to do...?
all us machines...?

kirk stands facing him another moment, then whirls
and steps to the monitor, flips some buttons, and
peaks into his communicator.

mr. chekov, commander decker's
present location?

chekov's voice
he... they... are in engineering,

i want to make a ship's announcement.
but it's to be heard only in

uhura's voice
ready, captain.

this is the captain speaking. it
appears that the alien ship...
v'ger... is not a manned vessel...

showing scott (at his console) listening to kirk's
words -- and facing decker and "ilia" who are just
about to leave engineering. (in b.g. the engine core
glows the appropriate color, and there is a soft
hum of idle power.) kirk's voice continues:

kirk's voice
it is a living entity...! a machine
life form. we are attempting to
ascertain its intentions. all
personnel will maintain yellow alert

the probe bland as usual, but kirk's words seem to
have strangely elated decker; he says to her:

a machine...! then it had to be
programmed. by whom...?

by the creator.

to join, and become one with the

to learn all that is learnable;
to deliver all collected data to
the creator on the third planet.
that is the programming.

just now confronting them, regarding "ilia" with open

well, sir, now what about all that?
a living entity, the captain says...
entity... a living thing...!

decker really hasn't heard scott; he's gazing at "ilia,"
attempting to digest what she's just said. but quickly:

thank you, scotty...

he moves to leave.

your welcome, sir.

now decker and "ilia" move toward the exit, scott gaz-
ing after them glaringly, watching "ilia's" every
move. suddenly, almost into the corridor, "ilia" turns
and looks back at the engine room. she addresses
decker, but load enough for scott to overhear:

there is no logical reason for
carbon units to control enterprise's
power systems.

lassie, if i were functioning
'logically,' right now i'd be
showing you the inside of our
scrap metal compactor!

kirk with mccoy and spock, who although somewhat shaky,
is clearly more alert. they are just assuming their

we're now locked into starfleet's
transceivers; admiral nogura has
received your reports, sir.

kirk pausing halfway to his chair to study the viewer
on which is appearing an image of v'ger looming omi-
nously in orbit over earth.

the visual is a lunar monitor
relay, sir.

as they begin to study it, the image suddenly distorts and
is replaced by signal interference -- signal static lines
running across the viewer screen.

heavy interference, sir -- it's
coming from here, inside the
intruder itself...

uhura hits buttons and immediately from the speakers we
hear a series of carrier wave beeps. spock looks up from
his console, listens to it.

puzzling! the interference
appears to be a rather simple
carrier wave code signal...

on an old style radio frequency,

as the doors snap open and decker and "ilia" appear.
all eyes go to them as:

as i stated, v'ger calls to the

v'ger is announcing that it has
arrived, sir -- that it's ready
to deliver the information it
was programmed to collect...

'to learn all that is learnable.'

it expects a return signal now,
ordering it to transmit that
information to the creator.

sir! v'ger's signals have

decker... the creator has not

kirk hears this, turning inquiringly toward her, but
uhura interrupts:

picking up starfleet again; a
lunar monitor relay...

as, indeed, the interference is fading and a new main
viewer image is appearing -- it shows v'ger in earth
orbit with a strange looking object moving away from
v'ger. it is an ominous looking, huge swirling green
mass -- it resembles the same green plasma-energy bolts
that destroyed the klingons and epsilon 9 -- and very
nearly the enterprise. it is not a bolt now -- the mass
is much larger and appears much more deadly. a second
object has now formed and moves off, a third one begins
to appear. (meanwhile, the first and second plasma-
energy objects are moving off into the distance in
different direction.)

my god! they're the same kind
of things that destroyed the
klingons, epsilon nine...

these read as identical composition...
... however, captain, they measure
several hundred times more

high mag, mr. sulu!

sulu adjusts the viewer through several image magni-
fications until we see the huge ominous green devices
more clearly.

the third one is moving off too --
a fourth one is forming...

urgent signal from starfleet,
all earth defense systems have
gone dead.

kirk reacts hard at this. uhura gets another message.

sir, starfleet computes their
trajectories as moving toward
equidistant positions over earth.

exchanging significant glances.

from four equidistant positions,
captain, a detonation would blanket
the entire surface of the planet.

i plot them as reaching equidistant
positions in... twenty-nine
minutes, sir... mark!

as kirk vaults from his chair, strides to a handrail to
confront the "ilia"-probe.


the carbon-units infection will
now be removed from the creator's


the creator has not answered.

the carbon-units are not
responsible for that.

you infest and control enterprise.
v'ger believes carbon-units interfere
with the creator in the same manner.

then v'ger believes the creator to
be a machine too.

it seems we all imagine god in our
own image.

three of the four ominous swirling green objects have
all moved away from v'ger now, in different directions,
growing smaller in the distance. the fourth object is
holding position nearby, seeming to grow in size and
as he throws a look toward spock who is now in deep
meditation. kirk turns and takes "ilia's" shoulders
and carefully turns her to face him.

'... similar life forms...?'
jim, v'ger's saying the creator
is a machine...!

of course: we all create god
in our own image.

kirk peers at decker a moment, ingesting this thought.
then he addresses "ilia" again, this time with emotion:
after all, he is pleading for the survival of the
entire planet:

v'ger! if we are lesser beings,
we are still, like you, living.
and because we are alive, we --
like you -- wish to survive.
you must not destroy --

kirk pauses abruptly: "ilia" is regarding him blandly,
stonily -- not the slightest reaction or response;
clearly kirk's plea is being ignored.
kirk draws in his breath to continue, realizes the
futility, turns helplessly to spock.
who has been listening intently, with near fascination
-- an idea forming in his mind. quickly, he steps
down to kirk:

treat v'ger as you would... a

startled at this, not sure he's heard correctly.


yes, captain, a child: evolving
into adulthood -- learning, searching
-- instinctively needing.

needing what...?

spock, this 'child' is about
to eliminate all life on earth;
how do we teach it that that's
'wrong'? with a spanking...!?

spock peers at mccoy almost sadly, then replies to

it doesn't know what it needs,
comm ander...
it does not know.

kirk says nothing, looks at spock who is awaiting a
reaction; then kirk glances at "ilia" -- his brain
is racing, struggling to reach a decision. and then:

the carbon--units-know-why-the


ilia... we can help v'ger
find what it needs --

"ilia" studies decker just a bland beat, then turns
to kirk:

disclose the information.

not until v'ger withdraws the
devices orbiting the third planet.

kirk unit! disclose the

kirk studies her a moment, then decides to press his

secure all stations. clear
the bridge.

a moment where all are startled at this order -- but
no time for questions as just then the ship is rocked
by a furious powerful eruption nearby within v'ger.

bridge to all decks,secure
your stations.

your child is having a
tantrum, spock.

clear the bridge, captain...?

that was the order, mr. sulu:
clear the bridge.

just then another eruption -- the ship is rocked again.
rocked about by the furious powerfields -- with
frightening displays of ray energy.
as all react to the powerful blasts, holding on to
railings, etc, at the same time attempting to secure
their stations for the evacuation. the damage repair
technician leaves his station, crossing to exit.

damage tech.
severe stress on engine pylons,

v'ger requires the information.

kirk merely looks at her, then to the evacuating crew:

bridge secure all stations!
move out!

jim, what the hell kind of
strategy is this...?

meanwhile, decker has crossed to chekov's now abandoned
console, checks it.

all ship's functions going to
automatic, captain.

turning to confront "ilia":

if v'ger destroys the enterprise,
the information v'ger requires
will also be destroyed.

as light show outside perceptically recedes, and simul-
taneously the rocking ceases. at the same time, "ilia"
is saying:

it is illogical to withhold
required information.

kirk does not reply to this, turns away to observe
the withdrawing crew. most are out; only spock,
decker and mccoy remain behind -- with mccoy on his
way. the bridge lighting dims, and now kirk looks at
spock, who nods approvingly; clearly spock is the only
person who seems to comprehend what kirk is doing, and
why. as kirk now moves toward the exit, and the lights
are dimmed even further:

kirk-unit, why do you not
disclose information?

because v'ger is going to
destroy all the carbon units
on the third planet.

they have repressed the creator.

the information will not be

and, gesturing the others ahead of him, kirk starts
toward the bridge elevator. "ilia" calls after him:

v'ger needs the information.

decker and mccoy about to enter, spock and kirk just
behind -- all stopping abruptly now at "ilia's" state-
ment. the very tone of her voice is enough for them
to realize they have made a very telling point. kirk
follows fast:

then v'ger must withdraw its
orbiting devices.

v'ger will comply if the carbon
units disclose the information.

wryly reacting to this:

it learns fast, doesn't it...?

as kirk looks at spock, kirk's whole expression convey-
ing the obvious question: "what the hell do we do now?"
but spock is ready with an answer:

captain, the vessel -- v'ger --
obviously operates from a
central brain complex...

spock allows the sentence to hang, as he and kirk
eye each other significantly, the swinging
over to kirk so we can perceive that to kirk this
idea has an even greater significance.

the orbiting devices would be
controlled from the point,


kirk nods grimly, faces "ilia" again; this time
he's playing for all the stakes.

the carbon units' information
cannot be disclosed to v'ger's
probe... only to v'ger directly.

all wait with hushed expectancy, all eyes on "ilia"
who seems momentarily in some internal communication.
she turns away from kirk and steps forward looking at
the main viewer.


the image of the chamber in which the enterprise is
imprisoned. but now, toward the chamber-end, where
further passage had previously been barred by the lace-
work energy barriers -- an opening appears. and at
the same time there is a gentle lurching effect, and:

forward motion, captain...!

a tractor beam...

"ilia" steps down from the platform and into the well
where she is closer to the viewer.

captain, what's the next move?

the question is, mr. decker, is
there a next move...

moving through the chamber, pulled by the invisible
tractor beam, toward the opening -- toward the next
chamber which, from this pov seems even larger,
more forbidding.
as the four officers step down onto the bridge, spock
hurrying to his science station, kirk to the center

resume duty stations, mr. decker.

as kirk attends to his console, deck is at an

all personnel resume stations...!

at the same time the lights are brightening -- and
members of the bridge crew begin returning. all this
time there is an ever increasing sense of movement.
kirk glances at decker:

well, mr. decker, it seems my
bluff is being called.

i'm afraid our hand is pretty
weak, captain.
but it's the only game in town.

kirk reacts, pleased, a split beat at decker's "our"
hand, and goes on:
kirk throws him a look of appreciation, then, abruptly
his manner changes as he addresses chekov:

mr. chekov, when do those devices

they reach final position in...
twenty-seven minutes -- mark.


at his console, a female engineering technician (chief
ross) nearby, the usual engine room ambience in the

scott, here, sir.

as kirk hesitates, glances around at the crew -- now
all having resumed their stations -- and then grimly
looks at "ilia" who still remains at the rail.

mr. scott, be prepared to execute
starfleet order two zero zero

hearing this, spock whirls around -- peers incredulously
at kirk. he appears for a moment to be incensed at
kirk's words. then he realizes and understands kirk's
position and turns, sadly resigned, back to his work.
as scott, too, hears this, but his reaction is of grim
acceptance. not so chief ross; she is horrified.

when, captain?

kirk's intercom voice
on my command.

aye, sir.

and scott hits buttons on his console, now moves to
step from his station, nearly collides with ross, who
clearly is bravely struggling to maintain her poise
and dignity:

why has the captain ordered self-
destruct, sir?

i would say, lass, because he
thinks -- he hopes -- that when
we go up... we'll take v'ger
with us.

will we?

when that much matter and anti-
matter are brought together?
oh, yes; we will, indeed.

the ship passing now through a chamber that is vastly
more active than anything we have previously seen.
directly ahead appears to be an area that dispatches
powerfields; a tremendous volume of them seem to ema-
nate and converge there. the medium from which the
ship moves appears almost solid, to the point where it
seems incredible that the ship can be pulled through
it at all. the entire chamber pulses with machine-
like, alien life. this should even be evidenced in the
booming powerfield lightening bolts as they course in
ever more frighteningly close proximity to the ship as:
the crew all watching the awesome spectacle of v'ger's
interior (on the viewer) as the enterprise is being
pulled toward the brain complex. all are somewhat sub-
dued, for all realize how their journey will end -- but
at the same time they also realize there is no other
way. the pans, catching facial reactions -- as,
in the b.g., we hear a constant flow of ad-libbed crew

twenty-five minutes to device
activation, sir.

starfleet has been apprised of
our situation, captain.

tractor beam remains constant...

we are seventeen kilometers inside
the vessel...

his back to the viewer, the angle does not reveal his
facial features, but we can discern him struggling to
contain his feelings.
kirk's back to spock as he watches the viewer, kirk
now turning toward spock.

spock... spock...

spock does not respond, then kirk reacts with momentary
annoyance, then realizes spock is totally distracted.
kirk peers at him a moment, then suddenly rises and
steps up to:
as kirk arrives, with spock still facing away from
him, clearly distracted.

mr. spock -- i think...

spock moves to face him, turning fully into the
so we can see now, just under spock's eye:
a tear! welling fom the eye, rolling down his cheek.
kirk is speechless a moment, glances at mccoy who has
also witnessed this phenomenon, and started toward
spock; but kirk gestures mccoy to stay back, as he
addresses spock:

not for us?

no, captain, not for us... for v'ger.

spock pauses as kirk peers incredulously at him, then

i weep for v'ger, as i would for
a brother -- far more knowledgeable
than i -- and yet one step behind.

listening, mccoy's face reflecting concern; decker's
face compassion and understanding, with decker step-
ping closer to spock, as spock continues:

as i was -- when i came aboard...
so is v'ger now: empty, incomplete.
searching. logic and knowledge are
not enough.

spock, are you saying that you
found, what you needed -- but v'ger

has not, doctor -- and now, because
of what we are planning... will not...

there is no alternative.

mr. spock, what would v'ger need
to fulfill itself?

v'ger has begun to understand the
true limits of our universe,
thereby realizing the existence
of other dimensions. to fulfill
itself it must evolve to a
higher dimension; v'ger believes
this can be achieved only by
joining with the creator.

each of us, at some time in our
life, turns to someone, a father,
a brother, a god and asks 'why
am i here?' 'what was i meant
to be?' v'ger hopes to touch its
creator to find its answers.

as decker reacts with sudden, almost evangelical en-
lightenment, as kirk says:

'is this all that i am? is there
nothing more?

on difalco
reacting to the viewer, ad-libbing a terse:


where another opening is suddenly visible -- another
chamber. but the violent and color energy effects of
the previous chambers are no longer evident. instead,
the entire chamber appears beautifully symmetrical,
with a strange, subdued glow, which increases as we
move closer.

captain, i believe that is our

this enormous chamber resembles a hemisphere, laced
throughout with dazzling energy patterns, not at all
ominous, but quite lovely in effect. as the enterprise
continues forward motion, now ahead you will to see a
small "island." floating in the exact center of the
hemisphere, the "island" seems alive with pulsing light,
with more of the lovely and delicate energy forms and
colors. on the "island," vague at this distance, ap
pears to be a "solid" matter form.

the "island" looming larger in the distance. and the
enterprise (as evidenced from the viewer) perceptibly
slowing. kirk just resuming his command chair, as:

forward motion slowing, captain...!

kirk says nothing a moment, studies the viewer -- and

engineering... status, mr. scott?

scott's intercom voice
we're ready, sir.

thank you, scotty. stand by.

as kirk turns from the intercom and glances at mccoy.
between them a total look of understanding.
the enterprise approaching the edge of the "island" --
slowing, but still quite clearly being pulled by the
tractor beam. the "solid matter" in the "island" cen-
ter still obscured by the strange light glow emanating
from that area. the enterprise is now nearly at the
"island" edge.
as all watching "island" loom closer and closer.

tractor beam strength lessening,

mr. scott... on my next signal.

captain, the orbital device will
not be triggered for twenty-two

the point...

the point is, captain, twenty-two

minutes. we could have that much
more time...

kirk glances at the viewer, the oncoming "island," then
at spock:

if we do not provide
v'ger with certain information, we
won't have twenty-two seconds; the
plan must be implemented upon arrival.

captain, we can't be sure that our...
move... will actually save earth.


decker's last word is interrupted by an almost gentle
bump -- and on the viewer all perceptible motion has
stopped. at the same time:

forward motion stopped, captain.

tractor beam is released.

the ship's sauce leading edge holding position at
the "island" edge as though docked.
watching the viewer.


all very silent a moment, gazing at the sight. now
kirk glances at the people around him: on his command
their lives are about to end. nothing is said; no
time for it, no inclination to articulate the obvious.
no need to.

mr. scott...

reacting to a console reading with surprise.

captain... i read an oxygen and
gravity envelope forming outside
the enterprise...!

sir, i have located the source
of v'ger's radio signal: (it's)
directly ahead.

that transmitter is a vital link
between v'ger and the creator.

we have twenty-one minutes. captain,
we can still save v'ger... and ourselves.

all this has caused kirk to vacillate, but he still
believes his course of action is the proper one, as:-

the carbon units will now provide
v'ger the required information.

"ilia" is moving toward the elevator, turning to face
the others as she says this. kirk remains frozen, his
hand on the intercom button. he glances at mccoy, as
though seeking advice. mccoy peers at him blandly,
levelly; kirk must follow his own instinct.
gazing at "ilia," then at spock, his brain racing, con-
sidering all the possibilities, options. he glances
at the anxious faces awaiting his decision: a possible
twenty-two more minutes of life -- or instant death.
another beat as he decides. then:

mr. scott... we're holding off;
there may be a chance...
spock, bones...

he starts for elevator.
as kirk strides toward the elevator, joining mccoy and

mr. decker... i will contact you
every five minutes. otherwise...
inform mr. scott immediately.

captain... i'd like to go along...

kirk studies decker a beat -- there is something com-
pelling about decker's manner -- a certain sense of
absolute necessity. kirk seems about to deny the re-
quest, then turns to sulu:

mr. sulu, you have the conn...

and kirk leaves; decker, his face reflecting a strange,
almost eager gratification, hurries after him.

v'ger plans to literally meld
to reduce both itself and the
creator to patterns...

... and then to reassemble itself
combined with the creator. the
most certain way of obtaining
all the creator's answers.

a sudden storm of light and strange sound. in the
midst of it, kirk finds a shaft of light very much
centering on him. he sees "ilia" watching him with
none of their "former navigator" in her expression
now. kirk hesitates, gathering his thoughts:

our data is being prepared.


we will answer and present proof
of our answer when it is ready!

kirk's words lead to a suggestion of frustration in the
storm of light and sound around them.

v'ger, we will bring the creator
to you! here!

as he moves to her:

we need only a few more minutes.
believe me...

decker has reached out to touch her -- the probe spins
at his touch -- the move knocks decker from his feet,
tumbling, a hard fall. then the robe looks at him
lying there -- just the slightest softening of her
features now.
slowly turning to face the probe again.

ilia, believe me... the creator
will appear!

as she meets decker's look, her expression softening
still more. the storm of light and sound begins to
subside a bit. she moves to him and he gets to his feet.

uhura's intercom voice
enterprise to captain...

uhura with sulu and chekov there.

problem, captain: the response
signal is not in our records.
voyager six was sent out by earth's
"united states subdivision.' the
code was probably...

as uhura continues:

uhura's intercom voice
... kept secret to keep voyager's
data from rival subdivisions.

that's preposterous! they
wouldn't have kept scientific
data from one another.

chekov's intercom voice
we are now checking with starfleet
archives, captain. stand by.

kirk, spock and mccoy are standing some distance from
them (out of hearing). the probe is clearly moving
into still closer touch with lt. ilia's memory patterns
as decker takes her hand.

and when v'ger melds? what will
happen to you?

it will... take me from you...

mccoy is looking at kirk with an incredulous expression
on his face.

and when it realizes what the
creator is...?

there's no way to know. v'ger
expected it to be a machine --
some single entity.
all of us here may be reduced
into patterns...

that seems to be what it has
planned -- to have the creator
physically present here.

the god it captures is going to
be a hell of a disappointment.

at the side of voyager six, decker in the midst of
twisting a wing-nut which releases a hatch which swings
open. decker peers inside while "ilia" waits.
decker and "ilia" at the old capsule in b.g. as kirk
looks that way.


we see decker look up at kirk's call, then ignore him
and go back to inspecting inside the access hatch. at
this moment, from kirk's communicator, a signal.

kirk here.

uhura's intercom voice
we now have the response code,

stand by. transmit it on my

the three of them exchange looks -- kirk, spock and
mccoy exchanging a silent moment of friendship and
resignation. then kirk lifts his communicator again:

enterprise... transmit.

catching decker in the midst of pressing a control on
his tricorder. both he and "ilia" are watching kirk
and the others closely. now decker looks down at the
tricorder's face. he nods:


still waiting. they continue to wait. mccoy shifts
uncomfortably, throws kirk a puzzled glance. kirk
finally lifts his communicator.

enterprise, are you transmitting?

uhura's intercom voice
affirmative, captain. for some
time now.

confirm code and transmitting

chekov's intercom voice
both signal and frequency
confirmed, sir.

captain kirk!

as the others turn to decker and "ilia."

the fault is here, sir, not in
the transmission.
the antenna leads have been
disconnected. v'ger never
intended to accept a transmitted

capture god! in order to
retrieve v'ger's data, the
creator has to physically come

and plug the signal directly into
the circuitry at this...
... point here, captain. it
should pick up even a tricorder

enterprise, i want that signal
again. transmit!

then kirk touches a control on his tricorder exactly
as decker did earlier. then he looks up, reacts as
he sees decker holding his own tricorder up -- and a
smile playing on decker's face.
as kirk suddenly pivots, races toward decker -- but he
passes too close to the "ilia"-probe. it sends him
spinning back, tumbling to his knees.
as kirk starts up to scramble to his feet but spock has
stepped in, putting a hand on kirk's shoulder and re
straining him.

jim... he wants it.

you got the enterprise, it's
what you wanted. this is what
i want.
but, jim...
... i'm the right choice for this

and then decker shoves the tricorder into the access
for just an instant nothing happens -- and then a
blinding shaft of light strikes decker. the color
becomes brighter and brighter, begins spiraling through
the room. "ilia" stes toward decker, is caught in the
light, and instantly vanishes in a brilliant white glow.

we see decker seeming to grow larger -- as if his
molecular pattern is expanding. a spectacular series
of visuals., the spiraling light enveloping the entire
all this emanating from decker's body, becoming larger
-- also brighter and brighter until now it is almost
transparent. and the spiraling now expanding in all
directions, and the room itself starting to dissolve,
vanishing into nothingness -- and all commencing to
slip into the new dimension.
kirk, spock and mccoy stand transfixed another instant.
around them, v'ger seems to be transforming into bril-
liant, lovely patterns. they all turn and race into
the complex in the direction of their vessel.
it too seems to be flowering into loveliness, brilliant,
graceful patterns as they seem to slip through to another
dimension, vanishing.
the "flowering" effect now spreading outward, v'ger's
massive shape becoming a spiraling pattern of twisting,
graceful shapes and brilliant colors -- a transcendence
into another dimension.
and then all of that is left is a shimmering, jewel-like
point of light -- and then it too fades -- and reveals
there in the blue-black of space, the u.s.s. enterprise.
which shows now only space and its familiar star
patterns. all gaze at the viewer, awed at what they've
seen and undergone. they exchange looks silently, no
one wanting to be the first to try to comment on some-
thing which is beyond mere words. we hear an elevator
door, scott and chapel enter the bridge and stand
silently watching.

well, it certainly has been...

spock, we were its answer!

yes, captain. it needed our
mortality, the fear of it, our
struggle against it, our fears,
our dreams...

... and the 'foolish' emotions
which drive us?

i prefer your poet dante's phrase
-- 'the divine restlessness of
the human spirit.'

spock... you're quoting poetry?

spock's cold look at mccoy is interrupted by:

starfleet signal, captain!
return to orbital dockyard for

ignore that signal.
shall we give the enterprise a
proper shakedown, mr. scott?

i'd say it's time for that, i
would, sir.
we can have you back on vulcan
in four days, mr. spock.

i have no business on vulcan,

kirk and spock exchange a look -- then kirk turns to
the helm.

ahead warp one, mr. sulu.

heading, sir?

out there. thataway.

a most logical choice, captain.

then the trace of a smile comes over spock's face.
planet earth in the distance, and receding in size as
the starship heads out the other direction.

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