Face of the Enemy
Stardate: 46519.1
Original Airdate: 8 Feb, 1993

[Warbird - crew quarters]

(in the dark, a fully clothed figure wakes on the bed with a groan)
TROI: Computer, lights. Computer, turn on the lights.
(nothing happens. Troi gets up, finds a wash bowl and mirror. It's lights come on and she gasps - she is Romulan! A man enters after the opening titles.)
N'VEK: Good, you're awake.
TROI: Who are you?
N'VEK: Please, Counsellor, there is little time. The Commander will be calling for you at any moment.
TROI: Where am I?
N'VEK: You are aboard the Imperial Romulan Warbird Khazara. I am Subcommander N'Vek.
TROI: Warbird? I was at the neuropsychology seminar at Bokara Six. The last thing I remember was returning to my quarters. I was attacked. I felt a hypospray.
N'VEK: It was necessary. I could not be certain you would come voluntarily.
TROI: Oh, God. My head's still spinning.
N'VEK: There are drugs in your system, but they've nearly dissipated. The disorientation will soon pass.
TROI: Why have you brought me here?
N'VEK: Listen to me carefully. You are no longer Deanna Troi. You are Major Rakal of the Tal Shiar, the Imperial Intelligence. Commander Toreth
TROI: Am I a prisoner?
N'VEK: There is no time to explain everything. You must listen. Commander Toreth will want to know your mission. Tell her nothing. Simply instruct her to proceed to the Kaleb sector, heading one oh two mark four.
TROI: The Kaleb sector?
N'VEK: Repeat it. Heading one oh two mark four.
TROI: Heading one oh two mark four. And she'll take orders from me?
N'VEK: You are an officer of the Tal Shiar. She will obey you. But do not push her too far.
TORETH [OC]: Sub Commander N'Vek. We are approaching the loading point. Bring our guest to the Bridge.
N'VEK: Yes, Commander. Immediately. Please, we must hurry.
TROI: I'm not going anywhere until you tell me what's going on.
N'VEK: You are a Starfleet officer disguised as a Romulan. Unless you trust me and do exactly as I have said, Toreth will discover you and you will be killed.
TROI: How do I know I won't be killed anyway?
N'VEK: Your only chance to get off this ship alive is to do as I say. You are an empath. You would know if I am lying. Am I?
TROI: No.
N'VEK: Then let us go see the Commander.

[Warbird bridge]

PILOT: Orbit established, Commander.
TORETH: Commence loading the cargo. Notify me when the transfer is complete.
(everyone say hi! to Carolyn Seymour)
PILOT: Yes, sir.
(N'Vek and Troi enter)
N'VEK: Commander, may I present Major Rakal of the Tal Shiar? This is Commander Toreth.
TORETH: Attend to your station. Why are you here without your guards? Well?
TROI: The mission is one of utmost secrecy. I could not risk bringing guards.
TORETH: And exactly what is the nature of this clandestine assignment?
TROI: I cannot reveal that.
TORETH: Oh? Why not?
TROI: I am under orders.
TORETH: You don't act like a member of the Tal Shiar. How long have you been with Intelligence?
TROI: Several months.
TORETH: Ah.
PILOT: Commander, cargo is on board and secure.
TORETH: Tell me, is there a reason why the Commander of a ship is being kept ignorant of its cargo?
TROI: I don't know what you mean.
TORETH: I have been ordered to take on cargo but its contents are unknown to me. Does that seem wise? I am responsible for the safety of this ship and its crew. How do I know this cargo is safe to transport?
TROI: I'm sure it is safe, otherwise it would not have been loaded.
TORETH: Ah. The Tal Shiar is deeply concerned for the safety and well-being of the military. I'm sure that every person on the Bridge of this ship could offer testimony about personal experiences with the Tal Shiar, but I doubt that many could recall those encounters as tender and caring. So I must ask you to forgive me, Major, if I hesitate to accept your assurances that that cargo presents no danger to my crew. I intend to open those containers.
TROI: That cargo is the property of the Tal Shiar. You will not touch it.
TORETH: On whose authority?
TROI: Mine. And if you do not wish to undergo another personal experience with the Tal Shiar, I suggest you not question me again. Now, proceed on course bearing one oh two mark four to the Kaleb sector.
TORETH: Why should we go to the Kaleb sector? It's virtually deserted.
TROI: Because those are your orders.
TORETH: Pilot, set course. Bearing one oh two mark four. Warp six.
PILOT: Yes, Commander.

Captain's log, stardate 46519.1. We have arrived at Research Station seventy five to take on a rather unique passenger, one whose homecoming will undoubtedly be difficult.

[Corridor]

WORF: The man acted dishonourably. He is a traitor.
CRUSHER: He risked his life to get here. He spent two weeks alone in a scout ship.
WORF: That does not excuse his original actions.

[Transporter room]

CRUSHER: Well, maybe he finally realised he made a mistake.
RIKER: It's twenty years too late. Energise.
(a man in a Romulan uniform is beamed in)
RIKER: Ensign DeSeve, by order of Starfleet Command I am placing you under arrest for treason.
DESEVE: I understand.
RIKER: After Doctor Crusher declares you medically fit, you will be confined to your quarters until a court martial can be convened. Find some civilian clothes. I don't want to see you in that uniform.
DESEVE: Yes, sir. Commander, I must speak with Captain Picard.
RIKER: He's a busy man.
DESEVE: Please, it's important. Urgent.
RIKER: I'll tell him.

[DeSeve's quarters]

DESEVE: Commander.
PICARD: At ease. It's Captain, actually.
DESEVE: Of course. I'm sorry, sir.
PICARD: You said it was important that I see you.
DESEVE: Yes, Captain. I have a message from Ambassador Spock. He said it involves further cowboy diplomacy. He said you would understand. There's a Corvallen freighter arriving in the Kaleb sector in the next twelve hours. Spock wants you to rendezvous with that ship, bring its cargo back to Federation space.
PICARD: What kind of cargo?
DESEVE: He said it was important to the future of the Romulans and the Federation.
PICARD: You have returned in order to give me this message?
DESEVE: Partly.
PICARD: In order to know whether Ambassador Spock's message is being delivered accurately, I need to understand something about the messenger.
DESEVE: I was ready to come back. Romulus had lost its appeal.
PICARD: Yet at one time you found something very appealing about it.
DESEVE: The Romulans are very moral, Captain. They have an absolute certainty about what is right and what is wrong, who is a friend and who is an enemy, a strict moral compass which provides them with a clarity of purpose. At one time I found their sense of purpose, their passion and commitment, to be very compelling.
PICARD: But not any more?
DESEVE: As I've grown older, I realise that clarity of purpose is a more ambiguous matter than I had thought in my youth.
PICARD: Commander Riker, set course for the Kaleb sector, warp factor eight.
RIKER [OC]: Aye-aye, sir.

[Warbird cargo bay]

(N'Vek is checking the cargo when Troi enters. There is a guard present)
TROI: You may wait outside. Make certain we're not disturbed.
(the guard leaves)
TROI: They're terrified of me.
N'VEK: The purpose of the Tal Shiar is to ensure loyalty. To defy them is to invite imprisonment or death.
TROI: I think it's time you told me what this is all about.
N'VEK: That is why I called you here. These are the cargo containers we brought on board earlier.
TROI: What's in it?
(N'Vek opens it to reveal a Romulan man)
TROI: He's alive. In stasis. Who is it?
N'VEK: Vice Proconsul M'ret of the Imperial Senate and his two top aides.
TROI: M'ret? He's one of the highest ranking members of the Romulan government.
N'VEK: His defection will be a profound blow to Romulus.
TROI: Why is he doing this?
N'VEK: M'ret had questioned the repressive activities of the government and was in danger of being imprisoned. He is willing to take this risk in order to protest Romulan policy and support the dissident movement.
TROI: You're part of Ambassador Spock's underground movement.
N'VEK: Yes. If we are able to deliver M'ret safely, Spock is hopeful that we can establish an escape route for the thousands of dissidents who live in fear of their lives. Now you realise why we are willing to go to such extraordinary lengths, even kidnapping you, to make sure we succeed.
TROI: You've given me the identity of a Tal Shiar officer. Is there a real Major Rakal?
N'VEK: There was. She was killed so that you could take her place. Only a member of the Tal Shiar would have the authority to alter a ship's mission.
TROI: Why me? You could have found a Romulan to play this role.
N'VEK: Yes, for the first part of the plan. But if anything goes wrong we will need a Starfleet officer.
TROI: Why?
N'VEK: There's no need to go into that unless it becomes necessary. For your own sake, Counsellor, the less you know about the specifics of this plan, the better.
TROI: What is your plan?
N'VEK: When we reach the Kaleb sector, we will rendezvous with a Corvallen freighter. You will take these containers into their ship and accompany them back to Starfleet Headquarters.
TROI: The Corvallens are mercenaries. Do they know what's in these containers?
N'VEK: No. They were hired simply to take you to Federation space.
TROI: Very well.
N'VEK: We are due in the ward room shortly. The senior officers always dine together.
TROI: I'll go to my quarters. I think it would be best if I stayed out of the way of the Commander.
N'VEK: No, you will be expected to attend. I'll go ahead. Follow me after a few moments. Commander Toreth must not feel that anything is unusual.

[Warbird ward room]

TORETH: We'd been told that the Klingon outpost was undefended. So when their warships decloaked, they took us completely by surprise.
(Troi enters)
TORETH: The Klingons managed to destroyed half my squadron before we even opened fire. But when we did, ha! they were no match for us. I destroyed their flagship myself. I received the Sotaric Citation for my actions that day. The Intelligence Officer in charge of that mission was executed. Major. Welcome to our table.
TROI: Commander.
TORETH: I suggest you try the viinerine. It's quite good.
(Troi takes a bowl and spoons some stuff out onto her plate)
TORETH: I realise that it's nothing compared to what you're accustomed to on Romulus, but you could at least try the viinerine.
TROI: I've smelled better viinerine on prison ships.
TORETH: No doubt. Tell me, Major, where did you train? The Intelligence Academy or the Imperial War College?
TROI: The Academy.
TORETH: Oh? So you must know Commander Konsab.
TROI: I know of him.
TORETH: I assume you studied Military History with him?
TROI: Yes.
TORETH: Tell me, Major, what do you think about his theories on the differences between the military and the Tal Shiar?
TROI: Which aspects are you referring to?
TORETH: Come now, Major. Surely you attended his classes regularly? It was Konsab's main theme.
TROI: Do you have a point to make, Commander? If so, it has escaped me.
TORETH: Commander Konsab believes that in order to function, military officers have to trust each other. The Tal Shiar, on the other hand, trust no one. They expect deception, so they always find it.
TROI: Your opinion of the Tal Shiar quite clear, Commander.
TORETH: I hope so.
TROI: We ensure the loyalty of the people. Do you believe the Empire would be better off without our protection?
TORETH: Protection? From what? How was the Empire threatened by the words of an old man, a devoted citizen who merely tried to speak his mind? How did the Tal Shiar protect the Empire by dragging him, my father, out of his home in the middle of the night?
TROI: Clearly, your father was a traitor.
TORETH: No. He was just an idealistic old man. I never saw him again.
TROI: I don't need your devotion, Commander. Just your obedience.
TORETH: And that's all you have.
PILOT [OC]: Commander, sensors are picking up an unidentified ship on an intercept course.

[Warbird bridge]

TORETH: What is the configuration?
PILOT: It appears to be a freighter, Commander.
TROI: Hail them.
TORETH: Visual.
ALIEN [on viewscreen]: Commander. We are glad to see you. We are prepared to transfer your cargo as agreed.
TORETH: With whom do you have this agreement?
ALIEN [on viewscreen]: Our arrangements were made with Major Rakal. You may rest assured your cargo will be taken safely to its destination. We will transmit coordinates for you to beam it aboard.
TROI: (softly) He's lying. They have no intention of keeping their word.
N'VEK: Are you certain?
TROI: Yes.
(N'Vek fires at the freighter - KaBOOM)
TORETH: Why did you destroy that vessel?
N'VEK: I beg forgiveness, Commander, but Major Rakal ordered me to fire.
PILOT: The Corvallen freighter has been completely destroyed, Commander. There are no survivors.
TORETH: I demand an explanation.
TROI: How many people were on that ship?
PILOT: Approximately eighteen people, sir.
TORETH: I don't care if there were eighteen or eight hundred. On this ship, I give the command to fire, Major. You have no right.
TROI: (pointing to her insignia) This gives me the right.
TORETH: Even you, eventually, will have to answer to someone. You will be held accountable.
TROI: I have been given broad discretionary powers. Subcommander N'Vek acted under my authority, the authority of the Tal Shiar. I assure you this action will not be questioned.
TORETH: I will nonetheless make an entry in my log that I am not responsible for those eighteen lives and that I deplore their loss.
TROI: Do what you feel is necessary. In the meantime, we must protect ourselves. Engage the cloaking device.
(the ship cloaks)
TORETH: And what are my orders now, Major?
TROI: Hold position and wait.

[Bridge]

DATA: There is no sign of the freighter, sir. We are the only ship in the area.
PICARD: Ensign, verify our position.
MCKNIGHT: We're holding at the coordinates specified by Ensign DeSeve, sir.
RIKER: Anything on long range sensors?
DATA: Sensors indicate no other ships within three light years.
RIKER: Could this have been a hoax?
PICARD: It's one possibility. Mister Worf, bring Ensign DeSeve to my Ready room.
WORF: Aye, sir.

[Ready room]

PICARD: Ensign DeSeve, you promised me a freighter with an important cargo. The only thing here is empty space. Do you have an explanation?
DESEVE: I don't understand.
WORF: Captain, he has deceived us.
DESEVE: No. I was told the ship would be at these coordinates.
PICARD: You said that the message came directly from Ambassador Spock.
DESEVE: Yes. Well, not exactly.
PICARD: What does that mean?
DESEVE: Someone else relayed the message to me, but he said Spock spoke directly to him. I trust the man who spoke to me. He would not have lied.
WORF: Was he a Romulan?
DESEVE: Yes. He's a member of the underground a dissident. He risks his life to work with those who want a different future for Romulus.
WORF: Captain, he could be leading us into a trap.
DESEVE: No, that is not so.
PICARD: It would be risky to set a trap here, so close to Federation space. But the fact remains, here we are, there is no freighter. Did your contact tell you anything else that might be helpful?
DESEVE: The freighter is an old Antares class vessel with limited speed and range. It couldn't have taken on its cargo more than a day ago which means it must be within fifteen light years of here.
PICARD: Why didn't you mention this earlier?
DESEVE: It didn't seem necessary. And on Romulus you learn not to volunteer information. It's a hard habit to break.
PICARD: Well, maybe now would be a good time to start. Follow me, gentlemen.

[Warbird cargo bay]

(Troi is pacing when N'Vek enters)
N'VEK: Our plan has collapsed.
TROI: Our plan? What about the people on that freighter? Why did you fire?
N'VEK: There was no alternative. You told me they couldn't be trusted. If I let them live the whole mission would be in jeopardy.
TROI: Eighteen people lost their lives.
N'VEK: Don't lecture me, Counsellor. A number of people have died in order to carry out this mission. Believe me, those eighteen won't be the last.
TROI: I'm sorry but I can't dismiss those lives so easily.
N'VEK: Fine. Agonise all you want, but don't let it get in the way of our plan.
TROI: You don't have a plan anymore.
N'VEK: You remember I told you if anything went wrong, we would need a Starfleet officer. There is a Starfleet base on Draken Four. It is two days away at maximum warp. That's where we're going.
TROI: In a Romulan ship?
N'VEK: Yes. It's your job to order Toreth to proceed into Federation territory.
TROI: We'll never get through the gravitic sensor nets.
N'VEK: We will, if you provide the correct access codes.
TROI: Do you really think this has a chance of succeeding?
N'VEK: If you have another idea, I'll be happy to consider it.

[Warbird ward room]

TROI: You will plot a course for the Draken System.
TORETH: You can't be serious.
TROI: Draken Four was the freighter's destination. I ordered the freighter destroyed because I recognised the Captain, a known Federation spy. Now we must deliver the cargo ourselves.
TORETH: We must?
TROI: I do not intend to explain myself to you. You will set a course.
TORETH: In order to reach Draken, we will have to travel through Federation space for nearly twenty hours.
TROI: That is not a problem.
TORETH: Contrary to the propaganda that your superiors would have us believe, Starfleet is neither weak nor foolish. The chances of us reaching Draken undetected are not good.
TROI: We will be cloaked.
TORETH: The cloaking device does not always make us invulnerable, and you would know that if you had spent any time at all in the field. The Federation has littered it's borders with subspace listening posts, with gravitic sensors. They may even have a tachyon detection grid in operation, in which case they will know that we're there. If we are discovered in Federation territory, it will be interpreted as an act of war.
TROI: The Tal Shiar has obtained access codes for the sensor nets. I will provide them if necessary.
TORETH: That will be no guarantee that we will escape undetected.
TROI: Your cowardice does not befit a Romulan soldier.
TORETH: People blame the military for the wars that we are asked to fight, but I think it is your kind, Major, that will be the death of us all.

[Warbird bridge]

TORETH: Plot a course for the Draken System.
PILOT: Course plotted, sir.
TORETH: Prepare for warp.
PILOT: Commander, sensors are picking up a vessel. Our cloaking device is still engaged. They have not detected us.
TORETH: Activate viewscreen. Enlarge.
PILOT: It is the Enterprise, Commander.
TORETH: Well, Major, it appears your suspicions about that freighter were correct after all. The Federation has come in search of its spies. Status.
PILOT: They are scanning the debris of the freighter. Shield levels are normal. Weapon systems are not active. They are not prepared for battle, sir.
TORETH: They weren't expecting to find us here, and I see no reason to alter that perception. The radiation from the debris field could make our cloak detectable if we engage warp engines. Proceed at manoeuvring speed.
TROI: One moment, Commander. We should hold our position until the Enterprise has left the area. We cannot risk detection.
TORETH: Even if we are detected, they cannot track us once we go to warp.
TROI: We have not established their intentions.
TORETH: Their intentions are obvious, Major, and are of no concern to us. Proceed on course, manoeuvring engines only. Go to warp when we're clear of the debris field.
PILOT: Yes, Commander. We should clear the field in twenty seven minutes.
TROI: You will keep me informed of our progress.
(Troi leaves)
N'VEK: It is not wise to challenge the Tal Shiar, Commander.
TORETH: I will not let her tell me how to run my ship.

[Bridge]

DATA: It appears to be the remains of a ship. My analysis indicates that it was an Antares class freighter.
DESEVE: That's the ship we were supposed to meet.
PICARD: Could there have had some sort of malfunction? A reactor core breach?
DATA: I do not believe so, sir. That would not be consistent with the debris pattern. However, sensors indicate extremely high levels of residual antiprotons.
RIKER: Romulan disruptor fire.
DATA: Correct. Based on the antiproton decay, I would estimate the incident occurred within the last four point three hours.
PICARD: Then the Romulans could still be in the vicinity.
RIKER: Red alert. Shields at maximum.
PICARD: Whatever that freighter was carrying, they certainly didn't want it to reach us. Are you sure you don't know what it was?
DESEVE: No, sir. I swear it.
PICARD: All we have here are questions. Mister Data, continue with your scan.

[Warbird - Troi's quarters]

TROI: We have to get a message to the Enterprise.
N'VEK: That's impossible.
TROI: It's the perfect opportunity. The Enterprise is nearby. If we can communicate with them, they might be able to help us.
N'VEK: Counsellor, this ship is travelling under cloak. All of our electromagnetic emissions are being monitored. Any attempt at communication whatsoever and we would be discovered instantly. It could not succeed. We must continue to Draken Four. That is the safest course.
TROI: Is there anything you can do to the ship or to the cloaking device that would let the Enterprise track us?
N'VEK: Track us? No. We want to get into Federation territory undetected.
TROI: What we want is to get the dissidents to safety. Now answer the question. Is there a way?
N'VEK: If there were, I wouldn't do it.
TROI: Yes, you will.
N'VEK: Counsellor.
TROI: We're not playing it your way any more, N'Vek. I've been kidnapped, surgically altered, put in danger I've gone along with all your plans. Now you are going to listen to me. You find a way to let the Enterprise track us, or I will go to Toreth and tell her I've discovered you're a traitor. I'll order you ejected into space. Is that clear, Subcommander?
N'VEK: There is one possibility. In order for a ship to remain undetectable while cloaked, the radiative emissions from the warp engines must be precisely balanced. The ship's Engineer is a sympathiser. He may be able to slightly misalign one of the nullifier cores. It would create a small magnetic disturbance in space whenever we were in motion.
TROI: Good. Do it.
N'VEK: The effect would only be intermittently. They might not even detect it.
TROI: If it's the best we can do, we have to try it.
N'VEK: Anything more would be immediately registered on the Bridge. Even this slight misalignment may be detected.
TROI: It's a risk we have to take. You're the one who outlined the stakes to me, N'Vek. Are you getting squeamish now, just because things are getting a little more dangerous?

[Bridge]

DATA: Sensors are picking up a polarised magnetic distortion to our port side.
PICARD: Analysis.
DATA: The distortion is extremely weak, sir. It appears to be moving slowly. It is gone, sir.
RIKER: Gone?
DATA: The distortion no longer registers on our instruments.
PICARD: Could this distortion be caused by a cloaked ship?
DATA: Unknown, sir. Our understanding of Romulan technology is still limited.
DESEVE: Captain, Romulan ships use a forced quantum singularity as a power source. If that system is not functioning perfectly or is damaged even slightly, it might show through the cloak as a magnetic disturbance of some kind.
DATA: The distortion has reappeared, sir, bearing three three seven mark ten. It has disappeared again, sir.
PICARD: Mister DeSeve, in your opinion is it possible that we're picking up a cloaked Romulan ship?
DESEVE: It's a strong possibility, sir.
PICARD: Mister Data, continue your scan. Ensign, link navigational control to Mister Data's console and plot a course for that distortion.

[Warbird bridge]

PILOT: Commander, the Enterprise is underway.
TORETH: Good. What is their course?
PILOT: They're heading for us, sir.
TORETH: What?
PILOT: They appear to be on an intercept course.
TORETH: What is the status of our cloaking device? Is there a malfunction of any kind?
PILOT: Cloaking device functioning correctly, sir. All shipboard emissions within normal range.
TORETH: Maintain full sensor scans.
N'VEK: Commander. The Enterprise may simply be engaged in search operations.
TORETH: Perhaps.

[Bridge]

PICARD: Where is it now, Mister Data?
DATA: It has disappeared once again, sir. I believe it may have been coming to a halt.
PICARD: Stop engines.
MCKNIGHT: Aye, sir.
RIKER: If this is a Romulan ship, will it stay in position until we leave?
DESEVE: I don't think so, sir. A Romulan Commander's instinct would be to attack.

[Warbird bridge]

TORETH: Engage manoeuvring engines, forward zero point one. Take us directly under their hull.
PILOT: Yes, Commander.
TROI: What are you doing?
TORETH: It seems that the Enterprise can track us even though we are cloaked. I intend to find out whether they can or cannot. N'Vek, ready attack procedure.
N'VEK: Sir, disruptors are standing by. Ready to disengage cloak.
TROI: We cannot risk an engagement here.
TORETH: Considering the nature of our mission, I would have preferred to have avoided it as well. But I see no other alternative.
TROI: What do you intend to do?
TORETH: We will pass as close as we possibly can. If they do have the ability to track us, they will move to avoid a collision. If they do, I will destroy them.

[Bridge]

DATA: Sir, the magnetic distortion has reappeared.
PICARD: Bearing and speed?
DATA: It appears to be moving toward us, closing slowly. Its bearing indicates a possible collision course.
RIKER: Time to impact?
DATA: I am unable to make a precise measurement. However I would estimate impact within ninety seconds.
RIKER: It doesn't make any sense. Why would they run into us? And if they were, why wouldn't they do it at full speed?
DESEVE: I don't know, sir. The Romulans will sometimes make suicide attacks, but only as a last resort. There's no reason for it here.
DATA: Time to impact approximately sixty seconds.
PICARD: We don't have the luxury to speculate. Back us away from the distortion, Ensign. One half impulse.
MCKNIGHT: Aye, sir.

[Warbird bridge]

PILOT: They are moving away, Commander.
TORETH: Prepare attack sequence.
N'VEK: All sections report ready for battle, Commander.
PILOT: Disruptors fully charged.
TORETH: Disengage cloak on my command. Prepare to fire.
TROI: Disregard that order.
TORETH: What?
TROI: I do not authorise this attack. You will cease battle operations immediately.
TORETH: I do not need your authorisation to attack, Major. This is my ship.
TROI: How typical of the military to resort to brute force when discretion is required.
TORETH: The Enterprise has demonstrated that they can track us. They must be destroyed.
TROI: Yes, they can track us. So if we attack them, they will return fire. And since we have no shields when we're cloaked, they will destroy us.
TORETH: Are you questioning my ability to command?
TROI: You are not fit to command. Step down. Step down or I will have you removed.
TORETH: Do you think anyone here will listen to you?
TROI: If any one of you defies the Tal Shiar, you will not bear the punishment alone. Your families, all of them, will be there beside you. I am now Commander of this ship. You will take orders from me and no one else. Remove Commander Toreth from her station. If she resists, shoot her.
N'VEK: Commander, please, step down.
TROI: Remove her weapon.
(N'Vek does so)
TROI: Now, Commander. Watch and learn. In order to defeat your enemy, you must first understand them. The Federation wishes to avoid war at all cost. So I shall offer them a diplomatic solution, get them to lower their shields and then destroy them.

[Bridge]

(the warbird decloaks)
WORF: Captain, we are being hailed.
PICARD: On screen.
TROI [on viewscreen]: I am Major Rakal of the Tal Shiar.
PICARD: I am Jean-Luc Picard of the Enterprise.
TROI [on viewscreen]: How can we be of help?
PICARD: A Corvallen freighter has been destroyed not far from here. We have detected the residual effects of disruptor fire. Can you shed any light on this?
TROI [on viewscreen]: A regrettable incident, Captain. The freighter was fired upon by the former Commander of this vessel. I have now taken control, and I assure you there will be no more attacks.
PICARD: Still, there was a considerable loss of life.
TROI [on viewscreen]: Captain, we do not want to exaggerate this incident. You and I can discuss it calmly. We can diffuse it before it becomes inflated.
PICARD: I agree.
TROI [on viewscreen]: I will come onto your ship. Please, lower your shields and prepare to beam me aboard.
PICARD: Very well. Mister Worf, lock onto Major Rakal. Transport on my command.
WORF: Aye, sir.
TROI [on viewscreen]: Thank you.
(transmission ends)
RIKER: What's she doing on that ship?
PICARD: I don't know, Number One, but she needs our help to get back. Mister Worf, keep your lock on her no matter what happens.
WORF: Yes, sir.
PICARD: Lower shields.

[Warbird bridge]

N'VEK: Their shields are dropping.
TROI: Activate forward disruptor array. Fire when ready.
N'VEK: Yes, Major. Firing.

[Bridge]

WORF: Captain, they have fired on us.
(three figures are beamed onto the bridge)
PICARD: Shields up. Stand by phasers. Damage report.
WORF: We sustained a direct hit, but the damage was negligible. The disruptor had almost no power.
DESEVE: This is Proconsul M'ret and his aides. They're part of the underground movement.
RIKER: They're in stasis. Medical team to the Bridge.
MEDIC [OC]: Aye, sir.
RIKER: Where's Deanna?

[Warbird bridge]

PILOT: Disruptors were ineffective. The Enterprise was not damaged. They have re-established full shields.
N'VEK: I am reading a malfunction in our forward disruptor array. The power system has destabilised.
TORETH: You're lying. The disruptor beam has been purposely sabotaged to conceal a transporter beam within. Quickly, Pilot, locate transport coordinates. What have you done?
PILOT: The transporter beam originated in our cargo bay. Something was transported from there to the Enterprise.
TORETH: So, Major, the mysterious cargo, brought on board by Major Rakal of the Tal Shiar, has been transported to the Starfleet vessel. I see two traitors in our midst.
(Toreth goes for her weapon but hasn't got one. N'Vek draws his and is destroyed by the Pilot.)
TORETH: So, Major, now that you can no longer take refuge behind the shield of the Tal Shiar, it's time to answer a few questions. What was in those cargo containers? Well, no matter. We will soon know all we need to know, and then we will execute you. Pilot, drop shields and cloak the ship. Prepare to go to warp.
PILOT: Aye, sir.

[Bridge]

PICARD: Mister Worf, now.

[Transporter room]

LAFORGE: Counsellor are you all right?
TROI: Yes.
LAFORGE: Let's get you to Sickbay.

[Bridge]

PICARD: Ensign, get us out of here. Warp nine.
MCKNIGHT: Aye, sir.

[Sickbay]

CRUSHER: That about does it. How does it feel to have your own face back?
TROI: Just right. Thank you.
PICARD: The men you helped rescue are safe. Proconsul M'ret is deeply grateful for your help.
TROI: The thanks should go to N'Vek. He sacrificed himself to save them, and me.
PICARD: Thanks to the two of you, the way has been paved for further rescue operations. N'Vek's efforts, and his sacrifice, were not in vain.

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