Timescape
Stardate: 46944.2
Original Airdate: 14 Jun, 1993

[Sickbay]

(Riker has a pair of nasty gouges over his right eye)
CRUSHER: Oh, you really did it this time, Will. This is not just a scrape, this is a very deep cut. Well, I can heal it, of course, but you've got to stop playing Parrises Squares as if you're twenty one years old. One of these days you're going to fall and break your neck, and I'm not going to be able to heal that as easily.
RIKER: I wasn't playing Parrises Squares.
CRUSHER: Worf's callisthenic programme?
RIKER: No.
CRUSHER: I give up. What was it?
RIKER: I was trying to feed Spot.
CRUSHER: Data's cat?
RIKER: I told him I'd feed him while he was gone. I was just putting down the bowl of food. The next thing I know there's a hissing ball of fur coming at my face. I hate cats.
CRUSHER: I love cats. You know, you've just got to know how to handle them.
RIKER: Maybe you'd like to do it.
CRUSHER: I would be honoured, if I could
WORF [OC]: Commander Riker to the Bridge.
RIKER: On my way. Oh, by the way, you'll need this.
(he throws her a phaser)

[Bridge]

RIKER: Report.
WORF: We are picking up a distress call on long range sensors. It is Romulan, sir.
RIKER: Romulan?
WORF: They claim they have suffered a complete engine failure. Power levels are dropping. Life support is failing. It could be a trick.
RIKER: How long before we rendezvous with Captain Picard?
WORF: Approximately thirteen hours.
RIKER: Lay in a course for the Romulan ship. Let's put up shields and go to Red Alert. I want to be ready for anything.
WORF: Aye, sir.

Captain's log, stardate 46944.2. Commander Data, Mister La Forge, Counsellor Troi and I are en route to the Enterprise, after attending a three day conference on the psychological effects of long-term deep-space assignments.

[Runabout cockpit]

DATA: Computer activate automatic helm control.
COMPUTER: Helm control activated.

[Runabout living section]

(Data joins the others for a meal. The runabout is huge, there is even a corridor between the cockpit and this area)
TROI: I was just leaving the reception when this Ktarian walks up to me and says, (slightly Irish) hello, Diane. I understand you're an empath. I'm a very sensitive man myself. I'm doing a thesis on interspecies mating rituals. Would you care to join me in some empirical research?
LAFORGE: That's a very good impression of Doctor Mizan.
TROI: How did you know?
LAFORGE: He's notorious, but he really is an expert on interspecies mating practices.
DATA: Did you help him with his research, Counsellor?
TROI: Absolutely not.
DATA: I thought it was a topic you were interested in.
LAFORGE: How did you enjoy the rest of the conference, Counsellor?
TROI: To be honest, I was bored. I spent most of my time at Professor Wagner's phylobiology seminar. I thought the idea of the seminar was that we would all participate, bring different points of views to the discussion. He gathered two hundred scientists from all over the Federation, and all he did was put us to sleep.
DATA: I have a memory record of the entire lecture, Counsellor. I can repeat the portions you missed, if you
TROI: No, thank you, Data.
PICARD: Well, it was little better at the physiognomy workshop. Doctor Vassbinder gave an hour long dissertation on the ionisation effect of warp nacelles before he realised that the topic was supposed to be psychology.
LAFORGE: Why didn't anybody tell him?
PICARD: There was no opportunity. There was no pause. (mock Teutonic) He just kept talking in one long, incredibly unbroken sentence, moving from topic to topic so that no one had a chance to interrupt. It was really quite hypnotic.
LAFORGE: Well, I had a great time. The warp-energy symposium was fascinating. I actually had an opportunity to touch a plasma field.
TROI: Really? What was it like?
LAFORGE: It was incredible. I could feel the plasma moving up my arm. It was warm and, oh, there was this amazing tingling sensation that
(Troi sees that everyone else has stopped in mid-whatever)
TROI: Captain? Data?
LAFORGE: Moved through my chest. It was incredible. It was like taking a bath in pure energy.
DATA: It was not painful?
LAFORGE: Oh, no. Counsellor? Is there something wrong?
TROI: I'm not sure.
(after the opening titles)
LAFORGE: Well, our bioscans check out. There are no physiological anomalies. If something did happen, it didn't leave any biological traces.
PICARD: How long did it appear to you that we were frozen?
TROI: I don't know. Four, maybe five seconds. You just stopped and then started again. I can't explain it.
DATA: My memory record does not indicate a pause or disruption during that time period. My internal chronometer and the ship's computer are both perfectly synchronised. There does not appear to be a temporal discrepancy.
LAFORGE: Data, let's run a ship-wide diagnostic. Maybe we missed something.
(Data and La Forge leave)
PICARD: Let's go through all this again. You were sitting there. The rest of us were here. Describe the exact moment when we appeared to freeze.
TROI: Well, Geordi was talking about what it felt like to touch the plasma field and you were taking a sip of tea.
PICARD: Did you sense something from any of us at that time? Any unusual emotion?
TROI: Not a thing. I was empathically aware of you right up to the moment you froze, and then it all stopped. (plexes) The past few days have been exhausting. Maybe it was my imagination. There were moments in that lecture hall when I thought time was standing still there, too.
PICARD: Or there is another possibility, Counsellor. This could be nothing more than simple
(Troi has a start. Picard is now next to her waving a hand in front of her face)
PICARD: Are you all right, Counsellor?
TROI: What happened?
DATA: You were motionless for three minutes eleven seconds.
PICARD: It appears to be the same effect that you described in us. Do you remember anything?
TROI: No. One second I was talking to you, and the next you were all standing around me.
LAFORGE: Wait a second. This is weird.
TROI: What is it?
LAFORGE: I had the tricorder run a comparison between the bioscan I took of you earlier and the one I took just now. In the time between the two scans, you should have aged twenty three minutes, but according to your cellular decay levels you've only aged twenty minutes.
PICARD: How do you account for this discrepancy?
LAFORGE: I don't know, sir. It's as if for Counsellor Troi, for three minutes time just stopped.
PICARD: Mister Data, contact the Enterprise. Tell Commander Riker to meet us at the rendezvous point as soon as possible. Have him scan the region for temporal anomalies.
DATA: Aye, sir.
LAFORGE: I'll check the sensor logs, see if I can find anything.
DATA [OC]: Captain, may I see you?

[Runabout cockpit]

DATA: The Enterprise is not responding to our hails.
PICARD: Are we within sensor range?
DATA: No, sir.
PICARD: Increase speed to the rendezvous coordinates.
DATA: Aye, sir.
(later, Geordi and Data are at the controls when there's a noise, alarms and the vessel tilts)
DATA: We have an engine failure warning in the
PICARD: Report!
LAFORGE: The starboard nacelle just cut out.
DATA: Attitude control has been restored.
PICARD: Full stop. What happened?
LAFORGE: The starboard antimatter pod is completely drained. The fuel reserves are empty.
PICARD: Is there a fuel containment leak?
LAFORGE: No, sir. The containment field is intact. all engine systems are operational. The fuel is just gone.
DATA: Geordi, I believe I have an explanation. According to the plasma conversion sensor, the starboard engine has been in continuous operation for forty seven days.
LAFORGE: Forty seven days? Nah. Let's check that sensor. It must be malfunctioning.
PICARD: I'll check the fuel consumption logs.

[Runabout living section]

(Picard goes to the console, then smells something. The fruit in the bowl has become moldy. He reaches towards it and shouts in pain. His fingernails have grown a good half inch. The others rush in.)
TROI: What happened?
(Troi uses a medical tricorder)
PICARD: My hand.
TROI: The cells are metabolising at an incredible speed. Almost fifty times normal.
PICARD: The pain is going away.
TROI: Your metabolism's stabilising.
PICARD: It happened when I reached for the bowl of fruit.
(the fruit is now totally decayed. Data uses his tricorder)
DATA: Captain, I am detecting a temporal disturbance intersecting the table. It appears that within the disturbance, time is moving at an accelerated rate, approximately fifty times faster than normal. The disturbance is spherical in shape. It is extending outward from the hull approximately seventeen metres from the ship.
LAFORGE: That would cover the starboard nacelle. No wonder it used up all its fuel.
PICARD: Check the hull integrity.
DATA: It does not appear to be affected.
PICARD: Mister La Forge, see if you can move us away from the disturbance.
LAFORGE: Aye, sir.

[Runabout cockpit]

LAFORGE: Lateral thrusters online. Data, plot a course away from the disturbance.

[Runabout living section]

LAFORGE [OC]: Make sure it doesn't come in contact with our other engine.
DATA: Course plotted. Adjust pitch to twenty seven point three degrees. Set heading one eight zero

[Runabout cockpit]

DATA [OC]: Mark zero.
LAFORGE: Got it. Reversing at fifteen metres per second.
DATA [OC]: We are clearing the phenomenon.

[Runabout living section]

(the vessel shakes)
DATA: All stop.

[Runabout cockpit]

LAFORGE: What was that?

[Runabout living section]

DATA: There is another temporal disturbance directly behind us.

[Runabout cockpit]

LAFORGE: Captain?

[Runabout living section]

LAFORGE [OC]: I think you'd better come take a look at this.

[Runabout cockpit]

(everyone is now in the cockpit)
PICARD: Yes, Mister La Forge?
LAFORGE: The sensors are picking up temporal disturbances throughout the region. Different configurations, different sizes. They're everywhere.
DATA: Within each disturbance it appears that time is moving at a different rate.
LAFORGE: It's almost as if something has shattered the space-time continuum.
DATA: The fragmentation effect continues along a heading of two seven zero mark one five.
LAFORGE: That's the direction of the Enterprise.
PICARD: Can we navigate around these fragments?
LAFORGE: We'll have to limit our manoeuvring speed to one half impulse, but I think we can do it.
PICARD: Get us to the Enterprise.
(later)
LAFORGE: These are the coordinates.
PICARD: Perhaps the Enterprise has been delayed.
LAFORGE: I've got the long range sensors on maximum, sir. There's no sign of the Enterprise. But I am picking up a faint reading. Possibly metallic. It's difficult to tell. The energy levels are practically non-existent.
PICARD: Take us to it.
LAFORGE: Aye, sir.
DATA: The fragmentation effect is increasing.
LAFORGE: Slowing to one eighth impulse.
PICARD: There she is.
TROI: My God.
(Enterprise is hanging nose to nose with a Romulan warbird. An orange line and a green dotted line link the two ships.)
PICARD: Mister Data?
DATA: The Enterprise and the warbird both appear to be trapped within one of the temporal fragments.
LAFORGE: The fragments seem to be converging at about this point. I'd say we're looking at the centre of the temporal disturbances.
PICARD: Scan for life signs.
DATA: Sensors cannot penetrate the subspace field. I am unable to scan within the vessels.
TROI: It looks like the Enterprise has been damaged. There, on the port nacelle.
LAFORGE: The warbird doesn't look to have sustained any damage at all. I wonder if the Enterprise even had time to get off a shot.
TROI: The Romulans could've decloaked before the Enterprise had a chance to respond.
PICARD: There's a second energy beam. It's coming from the Enterprise deflector array. Do you have any idea what that could be?
DATA: It is impossible to tell from a visual inspection. However, it appears to be focused on the warbird's Engineering section.
PICARD: We're not going to be able to determine anything from here. We need to get on board the Enterprise.
DATA: That would be inadvisable, sir. In each of the three instances we came into contact with one of the temporal fragments, we were integrated into its time frame.
LAFORGE: If we beamed aboard the Enterprise, we'd be frozen in time just like they are.
PICARD: Well, we have to find some way of staying unfrozen. Mister La Forge, what about a subspace forcefield like the one we used on Devidia Two? Could something like that protect us from the effects of the temporal fragment?
LAFORGE: Possibly. We'd need an awfully sensitive phase discriminator in order to moderate that kind of field.
DATA: The emergency transporter armbands contain a type seven phase discriminator. It should be possible to reconfigure their subspace emitters.
LAFORGE: Yeah. Yeah, that would certainly isolate us from the effects of the other time frame. But if we wanted to interact with that environment, we'd have to restrict the field. It would have to be practically skintight.
PICARD: Mister Data?
DATA: I will attempt to narrow the field, sir.
LAFORGE: Captain, I think this is going to work, but it's going to take some time.
PICARD: Well, Mister La Forge, it would seem that time is something we have plenty of.
(later)
LAFORGE: We've channelled all communications through the subspace relays in the armbands. That way we'll be able to be in continual communication.
TROI: How long will the fields last?
LAFORGE: About an hour, maybe less. Don't worry. I'll monitor you very carefully.
(Geordi switches on the armbands and Troi falls into Data's arms)
DATA: Counsellor?
TROI: I got a little dizzy for a second.
LAFORGE: We've created an artificial pocket of time around you, so it's probably playing tricks with your equilibrium. It might take a little while to get used to it. Let me know if it gets any worse.
PICARD: Beam us directly to the Enterprise Bridge.
LAFORGE: Aye, sir. Energising.

[Bridge]

(a Romulan is leaning over a fallen Riker)
PICARD: There are three Romulans, all of them with disruptors. One at conn. There are none of our security officers on the Bridge. They must have taken us by surprise. It appears that we can move objects in this time frame.
TROI: Maybe we could do something to help Will.
PICARD: I'm wary about making changes in this time continuum until we understand more about what's going on.
DATA: Captain, the equipment is no longer functioning. However, the information currently displayed indicates that there was a massive power surge in Engineering.
(Picard checks the tactical station. Worf is not on duty)
PICARD: Security teams had just been sent to transporter room three. And to Sickbay. Counsellor, will you go to Sickbay and investigate? Mister Data, go to main Engineering. See if you can determine the cause of that power surge. I'll be in transporter room three. Mister La Forge?
LAFORGE [OC]: La Forge here, sir.
PICARD: Will you lock onto our signals. I want you to beam Counsellor Troi to
LAFORGE [OC]: I'd rather not, Captain. We've got limited power and your isolation fields consume a lot of energy.
PICARD: Understood. We'll use the Jefferies tube. Let's go.

[Jefferies tube]

(they climb down to an intersection and open the bulkhead to carry on down, but there are three crewmembers there, blocking their way)
TROI: Maybe we can go around them.
PICARD: No, we'll find an alternative route. Let's go back up.

[Corridor]

(walking along, Troi nearly bumps into a woman. Outside Sickbay there are armed security about to enter)

[Sickbay]

(inside, Troi sees Beverly being shot by a Romulan. Troi runs out and a Romulan woman moves)

[Transporter room]

(Worf is at the controls as injured Romulans are stepping off the pads)
PICARD: Excuse me, Mister Worf.
(Picard moves Worf's hand)
TROI: Captain.
PICARD: Counsellor, take a look at this. It appears that Mister Worf had just beamed these three on board, and according to this, three other Romulans had been beamed directly to Sickbay just seconds earlier.
TROI: I know. I just saw them.
PICARD: What are we doing transporting Romulans on board the ship in the middle of a battle? They don't have any weapons and that one looks injured. If they were part of an invasion, then why are they unarmed? It doesn't make any sense.
TROI: Captain, there's something I have to tell you. Doctor Crusher has been hit by a disruptor blast at point blank range. If time returns to normal I don't see how she can survive.
DATA [OC]: Data to Captain Picard.
PICARD: Go ahead, Mister Data.
DATA [OC]: Please come to Engineering immediately. It is urgent.

[Engineering]

PICARD: What's the problem, Mister Data?
DATA: Captain, I believe I have found the cause of the power surge. There is a warp core breach in progress.
(there's a puff of smoke/steam coming out of the warp core)
DATA: It is the flashpoint of a warp core explosion. And it is expanding.
PICARD: Expanding? I thought that time was suspended on this ship.
DATA: We were incorrect, sir. I have determined that time is moving forward at an infinitesimal rate.
TROI: Why didn't we notice it before?
DATA: Our initial conclusion was based on our observations of the crew. A warp core breach moves at a much faster rate. The motion of the cloud is within my visual detection threshold. At its current expansion rate, it will consume the Enterprise in approximately nine hours, seventeen minutes.
PICARD: Is there anything we can do to stop it?
DATA: It is no longer a question of stopping it, sir. The explosion has already occurred. The fact that it is moving slowly changes nothing.
PICARD: Astonishing to see it frozen like this.
TROI: Do we know what caused the breach?
DATA: No. However, the console displays indicate a power transfer in progress between the Enterprise and the Romulan ship at the moment time decelerated. That is why there is a second beam between the two ships.
TROI: Why would we be sending them power?
DATA: Perhaps we should go aboard the Romulan ship. The answer to that question may
(Picard is laughing)
DATA: Captain?
(Picard has drawn a smiley face in the cloud. He laughs and points, then staggers)
TROI: Captain, are you all right?
PICARD: My head. Oh. Dizzy. I can't. (laughs then panics) No! No!
TROI: Troi to La Forge. Get us out of here now!

[Runabout living section]

LAFORGE: It looks like you weren't completely protected from the effects of the other time continuum. The neurophysical stress must've been overwhelming.
DATA: In much the same way deep sea divers experience nitrogen narcosis, you experienced a form of temporal narcosis.
PICARD: Can we modify the subspace isolators to give us better protection?
LAFORGE: I don't think so. I'd say the best thing we can do right now is to be careful, limit our exposure to their time frame. I'd say no longer than ten minutes per trip. And we should stick probably stick together while we're there, just in case.
PICARD: Very well. Well, the first step is to find out why the Enterprise was transferring power to the Romulan ship. I think we should begin our search in the Romulan engine room. Counsellor, you spent several days on a Romulan vessel. You probably know more about the layouts than anyone here. Perhaps
TROI: Captain, it might be better if you stayed here this time and gave yourself a chance to recover.
PICARD: Yes, very well. I will monitor your progress from here. But just remember, ten minutes, no more.
TROI: Yes, Captain.

[Warbird Engineering]

TROI: Geordi, there should be a power utilisation monitor over there. Data.
DATA: This is highly unusual. The crew is not at battle stations. The ship is on evacuation alert.
TROI: Is that why Romulans were being transported to the Enterprise?
LAFORGE: Take a look at this. There's an energy feedback returning through the transfer beam. It's probably what overloaded the Enterprise's engines and caused the core breach.
DATA: Perhaps the warbird was trying to destroy the Enterprise.
LAFORGE: I don't think so. According to this, the Romulans were actually trying to shut down the power transfer.
TROI: Whatever happened, this is beginning to look less and less like a Romulan attack.
LAFORGE: Data, why don't we take a look at their engine readouts?
DATA: Geordi, the engine core is completely inactive.
TROI: That's impossible. The Romulans use an artificial quantum singularity as their power source. Once it's activated, it can't be shut down.
LAFORGE: Let's take a closer look.
(he opens the equivalent of the dilithium chamber)
LAFORGE: I think we've found the problem.
DATA: It appears to be a highly focused aperture in the space-time continuum. Its energy signature matches that of the temporal fragments we observed earlier. However, it is approximately one point two million times as intense. I believe this may be the origin of the temporal fragmentation.
TROI: What are these dark spots?
DATA: I am not certain. They exhibit a complex bioelectric patterns. Very possibly organic.
LAFORGE: Organic?
DATA: From the molecular configuration, it appears (tricorder beeps) The aperture is beginning to fluctuate. I believe
(there's a bright light and the Romulans start moving. One behaves very strangely indeed)
ROMULAN: There's an energy build-up in the phase compensation unit.
ROMULAN 2: Check the main distribution matrix.
ROMULAN: That's not it. The matrix is clear. It's the power transfer from the Enterprise. I'm reading a massive feed-back.
ROMULAN 2: Systems are beginning to overload.
ROMULAN: Notify the Enterprise to shut down the power transfer immediately.
ROMULAN 2: Unable to comply. Their power interlocks won't disengage. We'll have to disconnect it ourselves.
ROMULAN: Disconnect the transfer beam.
ROMULAN 3: There is no pressure.
ROMULAN: Impending warp core breach. Shut down all systems.
(Picard watches as the Enterprise explodes, then reforms as time runs backwards again)
(the dialogue goes backwards until time stops where it was previously)
DATA: I believe my tricorder emissions caused the temporal aperture to activate. I suggest we avoid exposing it to any

[Runabout cockpit]

DATA [OC]: Further energy emissions.
PICARD: When time resumed, did you observe any activity in the engine room that might

[Romulan Engineering]

PICARD [OC]: Suggest what the Romulans were doing?
DATA: They may have been attempting to eject their engine core.
TROI: I thought I heard one of the Engineers say something about a power transfer. Something about an energy feedback.
LAFORGE: Yes, Captain. It looks to me like they were trying to stop whatever was happening here.
PICARD [OC]: Mister La Forge

[Runabout living section]

PICARD: From where you are, can you determine what's happening on the Romulan Bridge?

[Romulan Engineering]

LAFORGE: I think so, Captain. Wait. Something's not right here. Data, was this man always standing right here.
(the Romulan grabs Geordi, there's an energy flash and they both fall. Geordi is convulsing)
TROI: He's in neural shock,
DATA: We must get him to the runabout.
TROI: There isn't time. He's dying.
(she takes Geordi's armband off)
TROI: At least this way, he'll be alive in the other time frame. We might have a chance to save him later. Is the Romulan still alive?
DATA: Yes, but I am getting unusual readings from his bioscan. I am not sure he is a Romulan.

[Runabout living section]

DATA: His cellular structure does not conform to any known species. His bioelectric patterns are in a state of temporal flux. I do not believe that this being is native to our time continuum.
PICARD: Mister Data, you said that you found organic matter in the temporal aperture.
DATA: Correct, sir.
PICARD: I'd like to take a closer look at those readings.
(Data calls them up on the wall monitor)
DATA: This is a biospectral analysis of the temporal aperture. The organic readings originated from these dark spots.
PICARD: They appear to contain some sort of energy patterns. Can you isolate one of them and magnify?
(Data does so)
PICARD: They look like cellular clusters.
DATA: Its bioelectric patterns are similar to those of the alien's. However, they are significantly less complex. Its cellular structure appears to be in a state of mitosis.
PICARD: Data, this could be some sort of embryo.
DATA: It is possible. If I could further scan the aperture, it might be possible to
TROI: Captain?
(the alien is awake)
ALIEN: Must save. No.
PICARD: Who are you?
ALIEN: This body is not mine. It was necessary to assume it to exist in your time.
TROI: Why are you here?
ALIEN: We had to come to save them. They were in danger.
PICARD: Who were in danger?
ALIEN: Our young. They will die in the gravity well. It is artificial.
TROI: Artificial gravity well? Do you mean the Romulan engine core?
ALIEN: Yes. Our young are trapped. We must get them out, return them to our time.
DATA: His molecular structure is destabilising.
PICARD: How were your young trapped in the core?
ALIEN: We must use a natural gravity well to incubate our young. We thought the Romulan core would suffice. It did not.
DATA: Captain, I believe the aliens mistook the artificial singularity, which the Romulans use in their engine, for a natural one. A black hole. They tried to use it as a nest.
TROI: That's what deactivated the Warbird's engine core. So the Romulans sent out a distress call.
PICARD: The Enterprise responded, and found the warbird suffering from an apparent engine failure, and they attempted a power transfer.
ALIEN: Power transfer. Must stop the power transfer. Ruptured time, destroy our young
DATA: When the power transfer came into contact with the alien nest, I believe it disrupted the space-time continuum.
PICARD: Did you who attacked the Enterprise?
ALIEN: Yes. Had to stop power transfer.
PICARD: Are there any others like you here?
ALIEN: One other.
PICARD: Do you know where he is? Could he help us restore normal time?
(but the alien vanishes)
(later)
DATA: I estimate the core breach will consume the Enterprise in approximately seven hours, two minutes.
PICARD: Is it possible to lock onto the core itself, beam it into space?
DATA: No, sir. We would have to surround the core with a subspace isolation field. It is not possible to generate a field of that magnitude from the runabout.
PICARD: Mister Data, when you scanned the temporal aperture with your tricorder, it caused time to move forwards and then back again.
DATA: Correct, sir.
PICARD: What if we could reverse that process? Cause time move backwards and then forwards.
TROI: We might be able to run time back to a point before the warp core breach occurred and then find a way to prevent the power transfer. And then when time goes forward
PICARD: The breach never happens.
DATA: I could attempt to remodulate the tricorder's delta-band emissions. It should be possible to better control the temporal aperture.
PICARD: Make it so. If this works, we may not have much time to prevent the power transfer. We'll have to decide precisely where to be and what to do the very instant that time begins to move backwards.

Captain's log, supplemental. After placing the modified tricorder on the Romulan ship, we have returned to the Enterprise.

[Bridge]

DATA [OC]: I have reached Engineering, Captain. Standing by.
PICARD: Acknowledged. Counsellor, are you in position?

[Sickbay]

TROI: Ready, Captain.

[Bridge]

PICARD: All right, Mister Data.

[Engineering]

DATA: Initiating tricorder emissions.
(he taps commands into his current tricorder and)

[Warbird Engineering]

(there's a bright flash)

[Sickbay]

(the disrupter beam shrinks back into the weapon, and Troi breathes a sigh of relief)

[Engineering]

DATA: Captain.
PICARD [OC]: Go ahead, Mister Data.
DATA: The warp core breach has been reversed, sir.

[Bridge]

PICARD: Be ready to stop the power transfer, Mister Data.
DATA [OC]: Aye, sir.

[Engineering]

ALIEN 2: You must stop!
(she touches him and they fall to the floor. time moves forward and Data recovers)
COMPUTER: Specified energy systems have been initialised. The power transfer can now be engaged.
DATA: Do not initiate that power transfer.
ENSIGN: I'm sorry, sir. I already have.
DATA: We must shut it down.
ENSIGN: The transfer beam is at saturation, sir. It can't be disengaged.
DATA: Computer, place a level three containment field around the warp core.
COMPUTER: Containment field activated.

[Bridge]

(the Romulan ship fires at Enterprise. Conn explodes and a Romulan takes the injured crewman's place)
RIKER: Damage report.
CREWMAN: Shields down to twenty seven percent.
(Riker is knocked down by more hits to the ship, and a Romulan helps him back up)
RIKER: Captain?
PICARD: No time to explain, Number One. Continue the evacuation of the Romulan ship. You'll find LaForge in the Romulan engine room. Beam him directly to Sickbay.

[Sickbay]

(Deanna knocks Beverly out of the line of the disrupter, and aims her own weapon)
TROI: Step back, now.
CRUSHER: It's all right, Deanna. He wasn't firing at me.
ROMULAN: There was an alien here who'd taken Romulan form. I was firing at her. The Doctor got in the way.
CRUSHER: Where did she go?

[Engineering]

PICARD [OC]: Status, Mister Data?
DATA: I was attacked by another alien, sir. I was unable to prevent the power transfer. It cannot be disengaged, sir. A core breach is again imminent.

[Bridge]

PICARD: Can we move the ship?
RIKER: The feedback from the transfer beam would tear us apart.
PICARD: Patch me into the navigational control of the runabout.
RIKER: Got it.
PICARD: I'm bringing the runabout in.
(he flies the runabout into the power transfer beam. KaBOOM. The warbird vanishes)

[Engineering]

(the alien woman vanishes)
PICARD [OC]: Mister Data?
DATA: The core breach has been prevented, sir.

[Bridge]

PICARD: Data, it appears that severing the power transfer has not only prevented the core breach, but has also restored

[Engineering]

PICARD [OC]: Space-time to normal.
DATA: The alien who attacked me has vanished, sir.
PICARD [OC]: The warbird has vanished as well.
DATA: Judging from the residual temporal fluctuations, I believe they have returned to their own time continuum.

[Bridge]

RIKER: Captain?
PICARD: It's going to take a little time to explain, Number One.

Captain's log, stardate 46945.3. We successfully evacuated the crew of the Romulan ship, and we're on course to the Neutral Zone to bring them home.

[Data's quarters]

(Data takes a kettle off a stove)
DATA: Come in.
(Riker peers around, carefully)
RIKER: Where's that cat of yours?
DATA: Spot is sleeping, sir. Why do you ask?
RIKER: No reason. I've worked out the new rotation schedules. I'd like you to cross-check the personnel assignments. Notify the department heads. Your Bridge shift begins at twenty three hundred hours.
DATA: Understood, sir.
(Data puts water into the kettle)
RIKER: Data, what are you doing?
DATA: Recent events have compelled me to study how humans perceive the passage of time. For example, I have often heard people comment that time seems to pass more slowly in one instance, or more quickly in another. In reality, the actual passage of time remains fixed.
RIKER: I suppose it depends on how people perceive time. Every situation is different. It depends on how you feel.
DATA: I have been testing the aphorism, 'a watched pot never boils'. I have boiled the same amount of water in this kettle sixty two times. In some cases, I have ignored the kettle. In others, I have watched it intently. In every instance, the water reaches its boiling point in precisely fifty one point seven seconds. It would appear that I am not capable of perceiving time any differently than my internal chronometer.
RIKER: Well why don't you turn it off?
DATA: Sir?
RIKER: Data, people do not have internal chronometers. Why don't you see what happens if you turn yours off.
DATA: Thank you, sir. I will try that.
RIKER: Just don't be late for your shift.
(the kettle whistles, and Data gives it a Look)

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