(Will is setting places at a table and whisking an
egg in a bowl when the doorbell chimes)
RIKER: Come on in.
(Data and Geordi arrive with a portable stove, and Pulaski follows with
a flask. Finally, Worf)
RIKER: Excellent. Exactly what I need. Ah, Mister Worf. And the good
Doctor, bearing gifts.
PULASKI: Ale from Ennan Six. Your omelettes deserve no less.
DATA: This is not an efficient method for the preparation of
RIKER: No, you're right, Data. The ship's computer would be more
efficient, but it wouldn't allow for the subtlety needed for great
cooking. It would give you all of the ingredients in pre-determined
measurements, but wouldn't allow for flair or individuality. And Data,
as we both know, flair is what marks the difference between artistry
and mere competence.
PULASKI: For much of the history of mankind, the breaking of bread was
a symbol of friendship and community. Something we have gotten away
from in the twenty-fourth century.
(The beaten egg is poured onto the hot plate)
PULASKI: Ah, you have a practiced hand, Commander.
RIKER: Yes, I have my father to thank.
PULASKI: Your father liked to cook?
RIKER: No, he hated it. That's why he left the chore to me.
WORF: It is my understanding that in most human families, the woman
shares in the cooking.
RIKER: There were only the two of us. I never knew my mother. She died
when I was very young.
LAFORGE: Where did you get these eggs?
RIKER: On our last stop.
LAFORGE: At Starbase Seventy Three?
LAFORGE: What kind of eggs did you say these were?
RIKER: Owon. For you, Data, something special. Don't be afraid. They
won't bite you. And for you, Mister Worf.
(Geordi takes the first mouthful, and starts coughing.
RIKER: A cook's only as good as his ingredients.
(Kate pulls a disgusted face. Worf clears his plate)
PICARD [OC]: Number One.
RIKER: Go ahead.
PICARD [OC]: I would appreciate you joining me on the Bridge.
RIKER: Right away, sir.
PICARD: Number One, we've picked up an automated
signal from a Federation shuttlecraft.
RIKER: A shuttlecraft? How's that possible? I thought we were the only
manned Federation vessel out here.
PICARD: Apparently not.
RIKER: What's a shuttlecraft doing out this far? Where's its mother
WORF: Sensors indicate there is at least one life form on board the
shuttle, sir. Humanoid.
PICARD: Perhaps someone to answer your questions, Number One. Open
WORF: Communication is not possible, sir. The shuttle is without power.
RIKER: Set course to intercept.
DATA: Estimate intercept in three minutes.
Captain's log, stardate 42679.2. While en route to
the Endicor system, we have encountered a Federation shuttlecraft,
which seems to have appeared out of nowhere. There are no indications
of where it came from or how it got out here.
WORF: We are closing on shuttlecraft, sir.
PICARD: Thank you, Lieutenant. On screen.
(Definitely a tiny Federation shuttlecraft, tumbling gently in space)
RIKER: Prepare to lock on tractor beam.
DATA: Target vehicle. We will be within tractor beam range in two
RIKER: Set automatic locking device. Alert Shuttlebay two.
DATA [OC]: Shuttlebay two, prepare for retrieval
DATA: Locking tractor beam.
(The beam stops the shuttle from tumbling and moves it towards the open
PICARD: Number One.
RIKER: You're with me, Mister Worf.
PICARD: Doctor Pulaski, you are needed in Shuttlebay two.
PULASKI [OC]: I've been monitoring. I'm on my way.
(Guy Vardeman is on duty here)
DATA [OC]: Engage secondary tractor beam.
(The external beam is swapped for an internal one to bring the shuttle
in to land. The markings say NCC-1701-D 05 El Baz. Riker and Worf
RIKER: It's a Federation shuttlecraft, all right.
WORF: Yet there are no Federation bases or vessels in this area.
RIKER: NCC one seven zero one D USS Enterprise, shuttlecraft five.
(They look over to a shuttlecraft already parked in the bay. Pulaski
and a medic enter)
RIKER: NCC one seven zero one D USS Enterprise shuttlecraft five.
WORF: How is this possible?
PULASKI: Commander, come here!
(They gaze at the unconscious pilot of the new shuttlecraft - Jean-Luc
PICARD [OC]: Yes, Number One.
RIKER: Are you on the Bridge?
PICARD [OC]: Where else would I be?
RIKER: Well. right now I think you should be in Shuttlebay two.
PICARD: Why? What is it?
RIKER: This I think you should see for yourself. Bring Commander Data.
(Picard, Data and Troi enter)
PULASKI: The life signs are very confusing. His heartbeat is strong,
but the pulse is off.
PICARD: Is he injured?
PULASKI: There's no signs of trauma.
PICARD: Why is he unconscious? What happened to him?
PULASKI: I can't say. The readings of his brain waves are very strange.
PICARD: Strange? In what way? Non-human? Artificial?
PULASKI: No, neither. They're just out of phase.
PICARD: Can you revive him?
PULASKI: I wouldn't even attempt it till we get him into Sickbay. Come
on, let's get him back.
(The second Picard is wheeled away)
TROI: I have never felt anything quite like this before, so it's
difficult to put into words. That person is you.
TROI: He is as much Jean-Luc Picard as the person I am standing next
to. Beyond that, there is very little I can be sure of. I will have to
wait until he regains consciousness before knowing more.
PICARD: Data, I need to know what's on the shuttle's logs.
DATA: Yes, sir.
(Data gets into the shuttlecraft)
DATA: Captain, both primary and reserve power has been drained from the
shuttle. I am going to have to connect to the Enterprise in order to
activate the shuttle's systems.
RIKER [OC]: Report to Shuttlebay two immediately.
LAFORGE: I'm on my way.
PICARD: I'll be in Sickbay. Keep me informed.
RIKER: Captain, seen this?
PICARD: Looks like the damage caused by an antimatter explosion.
RIKER: It must have been just out of range of the shuttlecraft.
PICARD: Data, I need those logs. Counsellor.
RIKER: We'll be on the Bridge. Lieutenant.
(Geordi enters as Riker and Worf leave)
RIKER: Resume course and speed. Scanners at maximum
WORF: Maximum range.
LAFORGE: There you go. You should have power now.
(Data touches a panel, and sparks fly)
LAFORGE: What happened?
DATA: The polarity is not compatible.
LAFORGE: That's not possible. The connection's idiot proof.
DATA: The power requirements of the shuttle do not match those of the
Enterprise. We will need a variable phase inverter, to align the power
from the Enterprise to the circuits of the shuttle.
LAFORGE: Data, what do you think is going on here? I don't mean just
with the shuttle, I mean everything.
DATA: I do not have enough information.
(The second Picard is on a bed. Kate is walking
around with a medical tricorder when Picard and Troi enter)
PULASKI: I'm just starting a complete medical work-up. His vital signs
are distorted. Some of the indicators are totally depressed, others are
fluctuating wildly. I can't explain any of it. But he is alive. The
restraints are for his own protection.
PICARD: Have you been able to determine why he's still unconscious?
PULASKI: No. but I have been able to rule out any head injury.
PICARD: Wake him.
(Pulaski gives him a hypo, and the readings on the wall plummet into
the red. She rushes for another hypo, and the signs recover)
PICARD: What happened?
PULASKI: Apparently, the normal stimulant had the opposite effect. I'll
have to try something else.
LAFORGE: All right, Data. I think I've got it now.
That ought to give you something. Making this power adjustment is very
tricky. By all rights, this connection should blow all the shuttle's
DATA: Perhaps you had better step out of the way.
LAFORGE: All right, but remember, you're not indestructible yourself,
DATA: Increase the power.
LAFORGE: Powering up.
DATA: Adjust the invert two percent positive.
LAFORGE: Two percent positive. It's the right decision, but it's having
the opposite effect.
LAFORGE: I don't understand. I can't think of anything that would cause
the circuit to change so radically.
DATA: Adjust the invert two percent negative.
LAFORGE: Okay. Two percent negative. That's it. It shouldn't work, but
it does. Hey, Data. Take a look at the stardate. 42679.5. Captain.
PICARD [OC]: Go ahead.
LAFORGE: Captain, we've been able to reactivate the shuttle, and the
on-board clock indicates that the shuttle is
LAFORGE [OC]: Six hours in front of us. Captain, do
you read me? If the shuttle's from six hours into the future, then so
is the other Captain Picard.
Captain's log, supplemental. Part of the mystery
has been solved. The reason there are two number five shuttlecrafts is
because one of them is from the future. Six hours, to be exact. And so,
presumably, is the facsimile of me.
PICARD: Try to wake him, again.
(Pulaski gives the injection, and the second Picard opens his eyes. He
seems in pain)
PULASKI: It's a only a sedative.
PICARD: I know what it is. Don't sedate him. Let him be. Please. Let
him to remain conscious.
PULASKI: I have never seen anything like this. Are you all right?
PICARD: I'm fine, Doctor. Save your ministrations for your patient. I
want a staff meeting in five minutes. Doctor, I assume you will want to
PULASKI: Yes, I will monitor the conference from here.
PICARD: Keep me informed of any changes, no matter how small.
Captain's log, supplemental. I've been informed
that Mister Data has recovered the logs from the duplicate
shuttlecraft. I am more than apprehensive to play back a log which will
not be recorded for several hours.
LAFORGE: Captain, we've retrieved all we are going
to get from the shuttle logs, including the last visual records.
Everything before that is just a jumble.
PICARD: Show me.
LAFORGE: The distortion is because we had to use a phase inverter to
retrieve the logs. The quality will improve slightly.
(We see Riker standing in the shuttlebay as the craft takes off. There
is a wormhole effect, and a bolt of energy hits Enterprise, knocking
her against the tunnel side, and she blows up)
DATA: According to the shuttle log, the Enterprise was destroyed three
hours nineteen minutes from now.
LAFORGE: Captain, we have a portion of the last log entry. It's audio
PICARD [OC]: Captain's personal log, supplemental. I have just
witnessed the total destruction of the USS Enterprise with a loss of
all hands, save one. Me.
LAFORGE: All attempts to obtain further information from the shuttle
RIKER: Well, at least now we have something to go on.
LAFORGE: I just don't understand how you could have ended up in a
shuttlecraft while the Enterprise was being destroyed.
WORF: Nor I. The last thing you would do is leave the Bridge of the
Enterprise during an emergency.
PICARD: Yes. All right, let's proceed on the premise that what we have
just seen happened, and that in less than four hours from now, the
Enterprise will be destroyed, and somehow, although this is
unfathomable, I and I alone escape. Discussion.
RIKER: Our destination is the Endicor system. We're due to arrive in
three days. The charts show nothing of consequence, certainly nothing
to threaten the Enterprise, between here and there.
WORF: Sensors indicated no other vessels, Federation or otherwise, in
DATA: I have nothing to offer. There is not enough information upon
which to base a hypothesis.
LAFORGE: Well, the shuttle apparently came from somewhere up ahead, so
Rather than continuing on this course, maybe we should stop here and
let whatever is out there come to us.
RIKER: We may already be too late.
LAFORGE: What are you saying? That stopping, turning right or left, or
even reversing our course, would be pointless?
RIKER: When we brought the shuttle and the other Picard on board, we
committed to a sequence of events which may be unalterable.
PICARD: Yes, this is not a rock on the trail which once seen can easily
be avoided. This is much more complex.
WORF: There is the theory of the moebius. A twist in the fabric of
space where time becomes a loop from which there is no escape.
LAFORGE: So, when we reach that point, whatever happened will happen
again. The Enterprise will be destroyed, the other Picard will be sent
back to meet with us and we do it all over again. Sounds like someone's
idea of hell to me.
RIKER: Well, I know this much. We can't avoid the future.
PICARD: Agreed. So let's continue on course. Somewhere out there
something will happen. A decision will be made during the course of
which, I will be separated from the Enterprise. At the time, the
decision will seem to be correct, but it won't be. We have to
anticipate and not make, not make the same mistake once. Something is
waiting for us out there. Let's try and determine what it is, as
quickly as possible.
PULASKI: I'm just beginning to realise just how much of the body is
held together by its own internal clock. He was thrown out of time,
which caused his body systems to change their rhythm. Now, slowly, as
we get closer to the
time he left, his internal body clock is realigning.
PICARD: You're saying that when our time intersects with the time he
left, in that instant he will function normally and, and there will be
two of us.
PULASKI: Right now, that is my guess.
PICARD: Doctor, I don't think that's possible.
TROI: I'm able to feel much more from him now, Captain. His emotions
are still a jumble, but
TROI: He desperately wants to leave this ship.
Captain's log, supplemental. We continue on course
to Endicor. We are now less than two hours away from our rendezvous
WORF: Maximum scan. Nothing unusual to report.
RIKER: If this timetable is correct, we could get an indication of
something very soon.
PULASKI [OC]: Bridge, this is Sickbay.
PICARD: Yes, Doctor.
PULASKI: Captain, my patient is more coherent.
PICARD: I'm on my way. You have the Bridge, Number
(Picard leaves. After a fraught moment, Troi leaves too)
PICARD: How is he?
PULASKI: His vital signs are more normal. Which is to say, more like
ours. He is calmer.
PICARD: He's aware of me.
PULASKI: Perhaps, in some fashion.
PICARD: But he knows where he is, who's here with him.
PULASKI: I doubt it.
PICARD: What went wrong? You know, don't you? What did you do? What
happened? Why did you leave the ship? Don't turn away. Look at me.
Picard! Look at me!
TROI: Captain, he doesn't understand you.
PICARD: He knows I'm here.
TROI: Yes, but in a nightmare of disjointed images and half-heard
voices. He's in another dimension, looking at us across a great chasm.
And he's feeling remorse at what he has witnessed. He's afraid.
PICARD: What is he afraid of? Damn you. Help me! Why did you leave the
TROI: It's no use, Captain. He can't answer you.
PULASKI: When we get closer to his time, he may be able to.
PICARD: Are you still convinced he's me?
TROI: Yes, but you're not convinced.
PICARD: Not in the slightest. Except for his features, there is nothing
about him that I find familiar. Counsellor, I want you to stay with
him. He will be able to communicate with you before any on else.
PULASKI: I don't know how long anyone could take this kind of anxiety
state. There has to be a breaking point.
TROI: I think he's handling it very well.
PULASKI: He has a lot of anger.
TROI: Yes, because of what he represents.
PULASKI: And what is that?
TROI: Doubt. He's afraid that seeing him here and knowing what happened
to the Enterprise will make him timid, or worse, make him to hesitate.
PULASKI: Part of my job is to anticipate problems. My duty is to the
Captain, but first to the ship and its crew.
TROI: Doctor, the Captain is quite capable of command decisions.
PULASKI: Yes, for now. But this situation has put him under extreme
pressure of a unique and very personal kind. We both know that pressure
will only increase. You said yourself that he already has doubt.
TROI: Which is understandable, and healthy.
PULASKI: And could be potentially paralysing. If we begin to see signs
that he's acting in an irrational manner, I have the authority and the
duty to relieve him.
TROI: I don't think that will be necessary.
PULASKI: I hope you're right.
(Picard has been to stare at the shuttlecraft on
PICARD: What force or phenomenon could cause the shuttle to be thrown
back in time?
RIKER: None that we've encountered. In theory, accelerating beyond warp
PICARD: Using the gravitational pull of a star to slingshot back in
time. Is that what happened here?
RIKER: The shuttle doesn't have warp capability.
PICARD: No. So some external force was needed.
RIKER: We've never encountered a natural force that powerful. Why only
six hours? Why not a day? Or a year?
PICARD: Are you saying there was some conscious mind at work here?
RIKER: There's no evidence either way.
PICARD: The Traveller moved through time using the power of his mind.
RIKER: I don't think that's the case here.
PICARD: No. And Manheim's experiments with gravity and time were
rudimentary, and uncontrollable.
RIKER: Captain, I think this is one instance where you should suppress
your natural tendencies.
PICARD: Oh, really?
RIKER: One of your strengths is your ability to evaluate the dynamics
of a situation, and then take a definitive pre-emptive step, take
charge. Now, you're frustrated because you not only can't see the
solution, you can't even define the problem.
PICARD: Go on.
RIKER: What we're facing is neither a person nor a place. At least not
yet. It's time.
PICARD: You're saying I should just sit down, shut up and wait.
RIKER: I wouldn't have put it exactly like that.
PICARD: Not something I do easily.
RIKER: Your Persian flaw.
PICARD: Yes, perhaps it is.
(There's a nasty noise)
WORF [OC]: Captain to the Bridge.
WORF: This energy vortex has just appeared beneath us. There was no
(Pretty blue swirly thing on the viewscreen. The Enterprise is sitting
at the top of a space tornado)
RIKER: Well, at least the waiting's over.
Captain's log, supplemental. We have apparently
intersected with something.
DATA: It is similar to our tractor beam, sir, only
much more powerful.
LAFORGE [OC]: Bridge, this is Lieutenant La Forge.
LAFORGE: The pull on the Enterprise is steady. I'm
having to hold the warp engines at thirty percent in order to maintain
our present position.
PICARD: Transfer Engine control to the Bridge.
LAFORGE [OC]: On my way, Captain.
TROI: Captain, there is a consciousness here. Not thought, more like
PICARD: What do you think, Number One?
RIKER: I think we're being probed.
DATA: The beam is coming from the centre of the vortex. Sensors show it
to be only a mass of energy.
PICARD: What is it trying to learn?
TROI: I think it's trying to determine if we are a life force.
PICARD: We'll stay and investigate.
PICARD: Unless that was the mistake. Staying too long.
PICARD: We should go now.
PICARD: That would be the prudent move. I never thought I'd hear myself
saying something like that.
RIKER: Under the circumstances, sir, I think you're right.
PICARD: But you would rather stay and find out what it is? What is its
LAFORGE: Engineering, transfer to Bridge.
PICARD: Mister La Forge.
PICARD: Try and take us out of here. Maximum warp.
LAFORGE: Aye, sir. I've set the velocity at warp nine.
LAFORGE: Warp engines are at ninety one percent.
PICARD: Put it to the wall, Mister La Forge.
LAFORGE: Aye, sir.
(The ship shakes, but they're not actually going anywhere)
LAFORGE: I can't hold it.
RIKER: Captain, the engines can't handle the strain.
PICARD: All stop.
(The Enterprise slides gently backwards into the top of the funnel)
PICARD: Mister La Forge.
LAFORGE: I'm re-engaging warp engines, Captain.
WORF: All decks have reported. No damage. No injuries.
LAFORGE: Captain, the hold on the Enterprise is still very strong. I'm
having to hold at warp seven just to maintain our position.
PICARD: Everything we do tightens its grip. Let's see what we can
learn. Launch a Class one probe.
WORF: Aye, sir.
(The probe is intercepted by an energy bolt and destroyed)
PICARD: Mister Worf
(Picard gets zapped by an energy bolt, and so does his counterpart in
PICARD: That was personal.
LAFORGE: Captain, the power drain needed to hold this position is
PICARD: How long can you maintain it?
LAFORGE: Just a few minutes and then we're going to have to shut down
PULASKI [OC]: Captain some kind of energy
PULASKI: Just surrounded my patient.
PICARD [OC]: Is he still alive?
RIKER: Arm the photons, Mister Worf. Lock on the
centre of the vortex.
WORF: Photon torpedoes locked on target.
PICARD: Hold for my order.
(Picard gets zapped again and thrown against a bulkhead)
RIKER: Like a rag in a dog's mouth.
LAFORGE: I am now at maximum warp.
TROI: It's you, Captain. It was the entire ship, but now it has focused
its attention entirely on you.
LAFORGE: Captain, I can't hold it any longer. If we don't shut down
right now, we are going
PICARD: Hold this position. Counsellor, if I were to leave the
Enterprise, would its attention still be focused on me?
TROI: Yes. I think it would.
RIKER: You'd never survive.
PICARD: But in those few seconds, the Enterprise might break free.
That's what he, that's what the other Picard must have thought.
RIKER: Captain, where are you going?
PICARD: You have the Bridge, Number One.
RIKER: You're leaving the ship?
PICARD: We may be on a road that has no turns.
(Troi has got to Sickbay before Picard)
PULASKI: He's very agitated.
P2: I must get to the shuttle.
PICARD: I know. Do you know where you are?
P2: The Enterprise.
PICARD: Yes, but you're only vaguely aware of it. And me? Do you know
who I am? No, you don't, do you.
P2: I must go.
PICARD: Release him.
PULASKI: Do you know what you are doing?
PICARD: No. Release him.
PULASKI: Security to Sickbay.
PICARD: No. Security, disregard that order, and clear all personnel,
repeat, all personnel, from Shuttlebay two.
(Picard 2 gets up)
PICARD: I don't want any distractions. You, stay here.
PICARD: You made a decision to leave the ship?
P2: I must.
P2: The energy in the vortex wants me.
PICARD: You're certain.
P2: Yes. It's an entity, a life form, which recognises the Enterprise
as an entity with me as its brain. And it wants me.
P2: Shuttlebay two.
PICARD: What's your other option?
P2: This is our only chance. If I leave, it may be distracted long
enough for the Enterprise to escape.
PICARD: You're wrong. If you leave, the Enterprise will be destroyed.
Don't you remember? You saw it happen.
P2: If I don't leave the ship, then the Enterprise will be destroyed.
PICARD: If that's true, then help me. We want the
same thing. We both want the Enterprise to be safe. But there is a
piece of information I don't have. What is it?
P2: It's me.
RIKER [OC]: Captain.
RIKER [OC]: We are about to lose warp drive.
PICARD: When you say it wants you, do you mean it's
still you, only you, and not me.
P2: You're confusing me. We're almost out of time. I must get to the
PICARD Wait. You can. I'll let you. But first, tell me. What is, what
was your other choice?
P2: Stand aside.
PICARD: You must tell me. What was it? You don't know what I'm talking
about. You're locked into a single intent unable to change. Unable to
alter any part of your previous actions.
P2: I have to leave. There's no other way.
PICARD: There must be.
P2: One. But it would never work.
PICARD: What is it? What would never work?
P2: I have to leave.
PICARD: What was the other choice? We can't fight, we can't escape, we
can't go forward.
P2: No. No, we can't go forward. That would destroy the Enterprise.
PICARD: Was that it? Is that the other choice?
P2: I must leave.
PICARD: No. (grabs a phaser) Captain Picard. I can not allow you to
leave. Before we can go forward, the cycle must end.
(So he shoots his other self)
PICARD: Doctor Pulaski, report to Shuttlebay two.
(Pulaski and O'Brien dash into the shuttlebay. She scans the other
Picard, then leaves. No dialogue required)
PICARD: Number One, we're wasting our energy trying
to escape. It only weakens us. Helm, set a course for the center of the
vortex. Mister La Forge, on my command, I want all the power you can
LAFORGE: Yes, sir.
RIKER: We're going in?
DATA: Course set, sir.
PICARD: Now everyone hold their position. No matter what. Engage.
(The Enterprise turns and heads down the tunnel towards the light.
There's some shaking. In the Shuttlebay, the other Picard and his
shuttle disappear before O'Brien's eyes. Then they are in clear space
O'BRIEN [OC]: Captain Picard.
O'BRIEN: This is Shuttlebay two. The other Picard
and the shuttle are gone.
PICARD [OC]: Explain.
O'BRIEN: They just vanished.
PICARD: What's our position?
DATA: We are back on course to Endicor.
RIKER: Stand down from Red Alert.
WORF: All decks have reported in. No damage, no casualties.
PICARD: You have the Bridge, Number One.
PICARD: A lot of questions, Number One. Damn few
RIKER: Maybe none of it was real. Perhaps we were all part of a shared
PICARD: Or maybe he was thrown back in time, so that we would be able
to take another road. Make a different choice. Well, they say if you
travel far enough you will eventually meet yourself. Having experienced
that, Number One, it's not something I would care to repeat.
RIKER: I'll be on the Bridge, sir.