All Good Things
Stardate: 47988
Original Airdate: 23 May, 1994

[Corridor]

TROI: That was an incredible programme.
WORF: I am glad you approve. I have always found the Black Sea at night to be a most stimulating experience.
TROI: Worf, we were walking barefoot on the beach with balalaika music in the air, ocean breeze washing over us, stars in the sky, a full moon rising, and the most you can say is stimulating?
WORF: It was very stimulating.
(the turbolift arrives as Troi rolls her eyes)
WORF: What?
(exiting the turbolift into another corridor)
TROI: You know, I don't spend nearly enough time on the holodeck. I should take my own advice and go there to relax. Next time I'll choose the programme. If you like the Black Sea, you're going to love Lake Cataria on Betazed.
WORF: Deanna, perhaps before there is a next time, we should discuss Commander Riker.
TROI: Why, is he coming along?
WORF: No, but I do not wish. I mean, it would be unfortunate if he. If you and I are going to continue, I do not wish to hurt his feelings.
TROI: Worf, I think it's all right to concentrate on our feelings, yours and mine.
(they're about to kiss when)
PICARD: (in dressing gown) Counsellor! What's today's date? The date!
WORF: Stardate 47988.
PICARD: 47988.
TROI: Captain, what's wrong?
PICARD: 47988. I'm not sure. I don't know how or why, but I'm moving back and forth through time.

[Troi's quarters]

PICARD: I had this feeling I had physically left the Enterprise. I was in another time, another place. I was somewhere in the past.
TROI: Can you describe where you were, what it looked like?
PICARD: You see, it's all slipping away so fast. It's like waking up from a nightmare. It was years ago. It was before I took command of the Enterprise. I was talking to someone, I can't remember who. And then it all changed. I was no longer in the past. I was now an old man in the future, and I was outside and I was doing something. I can't remember what it was. I'm sorry, it's all gone. I just can't remember.
TROI: It's all right. Have you considered the possibility that this was just a dream?
PICARD: No, no, it was much more than a dream. The smells, the sounds, the very touch of things, much more real than a dream.
TROI: How long did you spend in each time period? Did it seem like minutes, hours?
PICARD: You see, I can't say. At first I had a sense of confusion, disorientation. I wasn't sure where I was. And then all that passed and it all seemed perfectly natural, as though I belonged in that time. But I can't

[Future Vineyard]

(Picard is bearded and working outside on a grape vine. He looks around for a moment then carries on tying them onto their supports.)
LAFORGE: Captain Picard to the Bridge! Captain, we've got a problem with the warp core, or the phase inducers, or some other damn thing.
PICARD: Geordi.
(They embrace. Geordi has blue eyes and grey in his hair)
LAFORGE: Hello, Captain or should I call you Ambassador?
PICARD: Oh, I haven't been called that for some time either.
LAFORGE: How about Mister Picard?
PICARD: How about Jean-Luc?
LAFORGE: I don't think I could get used to that.
PICARD: Good Lord, Geordi. Well, how long has it been?
LAFORGE: Nine years.
PICARD: No, no, no. Since you last called me Captain, since we were all together on the Enterprise?
LAFORGE: Close to twenty five years.
PICARD: Twenty five years. Well, time has been good to you.
LAFORGE: IA little too good to me in some places. Can I give you a hand here?
PICARD: Oh, well, I'm just tying up some vines.
LAFORGE: You've got leaf miners. You might want to use a bacillus spray. My wife is quite a gardener. I've picked up a little bit of it.
PICARD: How is Leah?
LAFORGE: Just wonderful. Busy as ever. She's just been made director of the Daystrom Institute.
PICARD: What about the little ones, Brett, Alandra and er?
LAFORGE: Sidney.
PICARD: Sidney.
LAFORGE: Well, they're not so little any more. Brett is applying to Starfleet Academy next year.
PICARD: So what brings you here?
LAFORGE: Oh I just thought I'd stop by. Been thinking about the old days on the Enterprise. I was in the neighbourhood.
PICARD: Geordi, you don't make the trip from Rigel Three to Earth just to drop by.
LAFORGE: No.
PICARD: So, you've heard?
LAFORGE: Leah's got a few friends at Starfleet Medical. Word gets around.
PICARD: I'm not an invalid. Irumodic Syndrome can take years to run its course.
LAFORGE: I know. Once I heard, well, I just wanted to stop by just the same.
PICARD: Well now that you're here, you can help me carry those tools. Well, my cooking may not be up to Leah's standards, but I can still make a decent cup of tea. Oh, I read your last novel. I thought that the protagonist a little too flamboyant, but for the rest I
(he sees three tatty people jeering at him)
LAFORGE: Captain, are you all right? Captain!
TASHA [OC]: Captain?

[Past - Shuttlecraft]

(We're back to season one now)
TASHA: Will this be your first time on a Galaxy class starship? Are you all right, sir? Sir?
PICARD: I'm sorry, Lieutenant. My mind must have wandered. What were you saying?
TASHA: I was asking if you'd ever been aboard a Galaxy class starship before.
PICARD: No. Of course, I'm familiar with the blueprints and specifications, but this will be my first time aboard.
TASHA: Well then, if I may be so bold, sir, you're in for a treat. The Enterprise is quite a ship.
PICARD: I'm sure she is.
TASHA: Have I done something wrong, sir?
PICARD: No. It's just that you look very familiar.
CREWMAN [OC]: Enterprise to shuttlecraft Galileo. You are cleared for arrival in shuttlebay two.
TASHA: Acknowledged, Enterprise. And there she is.
(and we get a nice look at Enterprise in her spacedock)

[Troi's quarters]

TROI: Captain? Captain?
PICARD: Tasha. I was just with Tasha in the shuttle.

[Sickbay]

CRUSHER: I've finished the neurographic scan. I don't see anything that might cause hallucinations or a psychogenic reaction.
TROI: Is there any indication of temporal displacement?
CRUSHER: No. Usually a temporal shift would leave some kind of triptamine residue in the cerebral cortex, but the scan didn't show any. Personally, I think you just enjoy waking everybody up in the middle of the night.
PICARD: Actually, I really like running around the ship in my bare feet.
OGAWA: (visibly pregnant) The biospectral test results, Doctor.
CRUSHER: Your blood gas analysis is consistent with someone who's been breathing the ship's air for weeks. If you'd been somewhere else, there would be an indication of change in the oxygen isotope ratios. Thanks. Deanna, would you excuse us please?
TROI: Of course.
(Troi leaves)
CRUSHER: Jean-Luc, I scanned for evidence of Irumodic Syndrome, as you suggested. There wasn't any. But I did find a small structural defect in the parietal lobe.
PICARD: A defect that you hadn't noticed before?
CRUSHER: It's the kind of defect that would only show up on a level four neurographic scan. It could cause you to be susceptible to several kinds of neurological disorders including Irumodic Syndrome. Now, it's possible for you to live with this defect for the rest of your life without developing a problem. Or even if you do, many people continue to live normal lives for a long time after the onset of Irumodic Syndrome.
PICARD: If that's so, why do you look like you've just signed my death sentence?
CRUSHER: I'm sorry. I guess it caught me off guard.
PICARD: I wouldn't worry about it. Something tells me that you're going to have to put up with me for a long time to come.
CRUSHER: Well, it won't be easy, but I'll manage.
(Riker enters)
RIKER: Captain.
PICARD: Has Worf found anything?
RIKER: No, sir. His security scans came up negative. They're still checking the sensor logs but there is no indication that you ever left the ship.
PICARD: I wasn't dreaming. Something happened.
WORF [OC]: Worf to Captain.
PICARD: Go ahead, Mister Worf.
WORF: Sir, there is an incoming transmission from Admiral Nakamura. It is a priority one message.
PICARD: Beverly? Mister Worf, will you route the call through to Doctor Crusher's office.
WORF: Aye, sir.

[Crusher's office]

NAKAMURA [on monitor]: Captain.
PICARD: Admiral.
NAKAMURA [on monitor]: I am initiating a fleet-wide Yellow Alert. Starfleet intelligence has picked up some alarming reports from the Romulan Empire. It appears that at least thirty Warbirds have been pulled from other assignments and are headed for the Neutral Zone.
PICARD: Is there any explanation why they would make such a blatantly aggressive move?
NAKAMURA [on monitor]: Our operatives on Romulus have indicated that there appears to be something happening in the Neutral Zone, specifically in the Devron System. Our own long range scans have picked up some kind of spatial anomaly in the area. We can't tell what it is.
PICARD: What are our orders?
NAKAMURA [on monitor]: This is a very delicate situation. I am deploying fifteen starships along our side of the Neutral Zone. I want you to go there as well. See if you can find out what is going on in the Devron System.
PICARD: Am I authorised to enter the Neutral Zone?
NAKAMURA [on monitor]: Not yet. Wait and see what the Romulans do. You can conduct long range scans, send probes if necessary, but do not cross the border unless they do.
PICARD: Understood.
NAKAMURA [on monitor]: Starfleet out.

[Future Vineyard]

LAFORGE: Captain. What's wrong?
PICARD: This is not my time. I don't belong here.
LAFORGE: What?
PICARD: I was somewhere else a few moments ago.
LAFORGE: What do you mean? You've been right here with me.
PICARD: No, no, no! I was somewhere else. I was, it was a long time ago. There was someone talking. I was talking to someone. Beverly. I was talking to Beverly.
LAFORGE: It's okay, Captain. Everything's going to be all right.
PICARD: I'm not senile, you know. This did happen. I was here, I was talking to you, and then I was somewhere else. I was on the Enterprise. I was back on the Enterprise. At least, I think that's where it was. I was in Sickbay. Well, it might have been a hospital.
LAFORGE: Captain, I think we should go back to the house and call your doctor
PICARD: Yes, yes, I know what you're thinking. It's the Irumodic Syndrome. He's beginning to lose his mind, the old man. Well, it's not that. And I'm not daydreaming either.
LAFORGE: Well, all right. All right. So, what do you want do about it?
PICARD: Data. I want to see Data.
LAFORGE: Data? Why?
PICARD: Because I think he can help.
LAFORGE: Help how?
PICARD: I don't know! I don't know! I want to see Data!
LAFORGE: Okay, then, all right, let's go see Data. He's still at Cambridge, isn't he?
PICARD: Yes, I think he is.
(six tatty humans jeering)
PICARD: You see them, don't you?
LAFORGE: See who?
PICARD: They're everywhere. They're laughing at me. Why are they laughing?
LAFORGE: Come on, Captain. Let's go see Data.
PICARD: Yes, Data. We'll go see Data.

[Future Cambridge University - Data's library]

(a roaring fire, plenty of cats and an obviously fake streak of white in his hair)
PICARD: I know how it sounds but it happened. It was real. I was there, back on board the Enterprise.
JESSEL: (cod English housekeeper) How do you like your tea?
PICARD: Tea? Earl Grey. Hot.
JESSEL: Course it's hot. What do you want in it?
PICARD: Nothing. Well, Data, I must say, this is a fine place you have here. They certainly treat professors pretty well at Cambridge
DATA: Holding the Lucasian Chair does have its perquisites. This house originally belonged to Sir Isaac Newton when he held the position. It's become the traditional residence.
JESSEL: Here you go.
LAFORGE: Thank you.
JESSEL: If you're really his friend, you'll get him to take that grey out of his hair. Looks like a bloody skunk.
DATA: Jessel. She can be frightfully trying at times, but she does make me laugh.
LAFORGE: Data, what is it with the hair anyway?
DATA: I found that a touch of grey adds an air of distinction.
PICARD: You say this is Earl Grey? I'd swear that it was Darjeeling.
(Jessel leaves)
DATA: Captain, how long has it been since you've seen a physician about your Irumodic Syndrome?
PICARD: A week. They've prescribed peridaxon.
DATA: But sir, peridaxon
PICARD: Yes, I know, it's not a cure, There's nothing that can prevent the deterioration of the synaptic pathways. You think that I'm senile, that all this is just a delusion.
LAFORGE: Now come on, Captain, no one said anything of the kind.
DATA: In all honesty, Captain, the thought has occurred to me. However, there's nothing to disprove what you're saying. So it's possible something is happening to you. The first thing we should do is run a complete series of neurographic scans. We can use the equipment at the biometrics lab here on the campus. Jessel, ask Professor Ripper to take over my lecture for tomorrow. Possibly for the rest of the week. Captain, we'll get to the bottom of this.
PICARD: That's the Data that I remember. I knew I could count on you.

[Past Shuttlebay]

TASHA: Commanding officer Enterprise arriving.
(Picard is piped aboard. Troi is back in her mini-uniform but not the bun.)
PICARD: To Captain Jean-Luc Picard, stardate 41148
(three people jeering from the upper level)
PICARD: You are hereby requested and required to take command
(four of them behind him)
PICARD: to take command of the USS Enterprise as of this date. Signed Rear Admiral Norah Satie, Starfleet Command.
(just as he goes to shake Troi's hand, he sees more)
PICARD: Red Alert! All crew to battle stations.
(Guy Vardeman, Colm Meaney and the others hesitate)
TASHA: You heard him. Move!

Personal log, stardate 41153.7. Recorded under security lockout Omega three two seven. I have decided not to inform this crew of my experiences. If it's true that I've travelled to the past, I cannot risk giving them foreknowledge of what's to come.

[Past - Observation lounge]

PICARD: Report.
TASHA: We've completed a full subspace scan of the ship and surrounding space. We've detected no unusual readings or anomalies.
WORF: With all due respect, sir, it would be helpful if we knew exactly what we were looking for.
PICARD: Noted. Counsellor, do you sense anything unusual on board the Enterprise? Perhaps an alien presence that doesn't belong here, maybe one operating on a level of intelligence far superior to our own?
TROI: No, sir. I'm only aware of the crew and the families on board the ship.
PICARD: Mister Worf, initiate a level two security alert on all decks until further notice.
TASHA: With all due respect, sir, I'm the Security Chief on this ship. Unless you're planning to make a change.
PICARD: No, of course not. Lieutenant, security alert two.
TASHA: Aye, sir.
O'BRIEN [OC]: Captain Picard to the Bridge, please.
PICARD: We're on our way, Chief.

[Past - Bridge]

O'BRIEN: Sir, Starfleet has just issued an alert. It appears a number of vessels are moving toward the Neutral Zone between Romulan and Federation space.
TASHA: What kind of vessels?
O'BRIEN: Freighters, transports, all civilians. None of them Starfleet ships.
PICARD: This tells me that a large spatial anomaly has appeared in the Neutral Zone, in the Devron System.
WORF: Captain, it could be a Romulan trick to lure our ships into the Neutral Zone as an excuse for a military strike.
O'BRIEN: Starfleet's cancelling our mission to Farpoint Station and ordering us to the Neutral Zone as soon as we leave the Spacedock.
PICARD: No, we'll proceed to Farpoint.
TASHA: Sir?
PICARD: You heard me.
WORF: Captain, the security of the Federation could be at stake.
PICARD: Mister Worf, will you man your station.
WORF: Aye, sir.
TROI: Captain, perhaps if we understood your thinking, if you could explain
PICARD: I've no intention of explaining to anyone. We will proceed with our mission to Farpoint as planned. Chief O'Brien, am I right in thinking that you're having a problem with the warp plasma inducers.
O'BRIEN: That's right, sir.
PICARD: Well I know how to get them back online. You're with me. We'll be in main Engineering.

[Past - Engineering]

PICARD: Mister O'Brien, will you use these specifications to bypass the secondary plasma inducer.
O'BRIEN: You have to realise sir, this isn't exactly my area of expertise. The Chief Engineer should be making these modifications.
PICARD: But the Chief Engineer isn't on board. Mister O'Brien, trust me. I know you can do it. All those years you spent as a child building those model starship engines. They were well worth it.
O'BRIEN: How did you know that, sir?
PICARD: From your Starfleet records.
O'BRIEN: Yes, sir. I'll get right to these modifications. Fletcher, tell Munoz and Lee to get up here right away.
FLETCHER: Aye, sir.
(Picard goes to a wall console and Data enters)
O'BRIEN: We have to realign the entire power grid. We'll all be burning the midnight oil on this one.
DATA: That would be inadvisable.
O'BRIEN: Excuse me?
DATA: If you attempt to ignite a petroleum product on this ship at zero hundred hours, it will activate the fire suppression system, which would seal off this entire compartment.
O'BRIEN: That was just an expression.
DATA: Expression of what?
O'BRIEN: A figure of speech. I was trying to tell him that we'd be working late.
DATA: Ah. Then to burn the midnight oil implies late work?
O'BRIEN: That's right.
DATA: I am curious. What is the etymology of that idiom? How did it come to be used in contemporary language?
O'BRIEN: I don't know, sir.
PICARD: Commander Data, welcome on board. It's so very good to see you.
DATA: It is good to see you, too, sir.
PICARD: I could use your help with the infuser array.
DATA: Certainly.
PICARD: As you can see, we're having difficulty with the plasma conduits.
DATA: This will need a completely new field induction subprocessor. It appears that we will be required to ignite the midnight petroleum, sir.
CRUSHER [OC]: Jean-Luc, what's going on?

[Doctor's office]

PICARD: It happened again.
CRUSHER: A time shift?
PICARD: Yes.
RIKER: What happened?
PICARD: It's still a little vague, but I can remember more this time. It seems that every time I shift periods, I can retain more memory. At first, it appeared that I was in the future, years from now, and then I was in the past just before our first mission.
RIKER: What is it?
CRUSHER: I just scanned his temporal lobe and compared it to the scan I performed just a few minutes before. There's a thirteen percent increase in the acetylcholine of the hippocampus. Within a matter of minutes, you have accumulated over two days worth of memories.

[Observation lounge]

PICARD: Counsellor, do you remember when I first came on board the Enterprise?
TROI: Yes.
PICARD: What happened after the welcoming ceremony?
TROI: There was a reception in Ten Forward. I introduced you to Worf and the other senior officers.
PICARD: Do you have any memory of my calling Red Alert in Spacedock? Do you remember Starfleet diverting us from Farpoint to the Neutral Zone to investigate a spatial anomaly?
TROI: No.
DATA: It would appear there is a discontinuity between the time periods you described. Events in one time period would seem to have no effect on the other two.
RIKER: And yet in both the past and the present there's a report of the same anomaly in the Devron System. I find it hard to believe that that's a coincidence.
PICARD: For all I know, I may find the same thing in the future.
LAFORGE: Perhaps the anomaly is a temporal disturbance of some kind.
CRUSHER: How is all this related to your time shifting?
PICARD: These are all very important questions, and perhaps I will find answers to them in the past, but now we have a potentially dangerous threat from the Romulans. I want all departments to present a battle readiness report to me at oh eight hundred hours tomorrow morning. Dismissed.
RIKER: Deanna, it's going to be a late night. Would you like to have some dinner first?
TROI: Actually I, we have plans.
RIKER: Oh. I see. I'm sorry. I'll see you in the morning.
WORF: Goodnight, sir.
RIKER: Worf.

[Bridge]

PICARD: I want continuous subspace sweeps. We may be able to detect a temporal disturbance.
DATA: Aye, sir.
PICARD: Will, this time shifting. When it happens I experience a momentary disorientation. If that should happen during a crisis, I want you to take command immediately. Number One?
RIKER: I'm sorry. Be prepared to take command. Aye, sir.
PICARD: Speaking of disorientation, are you all right?
RIKER: I'm just a little distracted. I'm fine.
PICARD: You have the Bridge, Number One. I'll be in my Ready room.

[Ready room]

PICARD: Come.
CRUSHER: Milk, warm, a dash of nutmeg.
PICARD: What's this?
CRUSHER: A prescription. A glass of warm milk and eight hours uninterrupted sleep.
PICARD: Beverly.
CRUSHER: Doctor's orders. You're exhausted. Look, I don't know whether you've slept in the past or in the future, but I'm sure you haven't slept in the present. Now get some rest, or I'll have you relieved and sedated.
PICARD: Yes, sir. What? Hey, Beverly?
CRUSHER: As a physician, it's often my job to give people unpleasant news. To tell them that they need surgery or that they can't have children or that they might be facing a difficult illness.
PICARD: But you said yourself that this is only a possibility.
CRUSHER: But you've been to the future. You know it's going to happen.
PICARD: I prefer to look on the future as something which is not written in stone. A lot of things can happen in twenty five years.
(they kiss)
CRUSHER: A lot of things can happen.
LAFORGE [OC]: Captain?

[Future - Data's library]

LAFORGE: Captain, wake up.
PICARD: Yes. What is it? Have we reached the Neutral Zone?
LAFORGE: The Neutral Zone?
PICARD: Sorry. I was in the past again. What's going on?
LAFORGE: Data's arranged for us to run those tests on you in the biometrics lab. We're ready to go if you are.
PICARD: No, no, no. No, we have to get to the Neutral Zone.
LAFORGE: The Neutral Zone? Why?
PICARD: In the other two time periods, Starfleet reported a sort of a spatial anomaly in, in, in the Devron system. In Devron system in the Neutral Zone.
LAFORGE: Captain.
PICARD: If the anomaly appeared there in the past, then it might be here too and we have to find out.
LAFORGE: Just because you've seen it in two other time frames, doesn't mean that it's going to be here.
PICARD: But if it is here, then it means something. Damn it, Geordi, I know what we have to do!
LAFORGE: All right. Okay. But first, there is no Neutral Zone, remember?
PICARD: Right. Right. Klingons. In this time period, the Klingons have taken over the Romulan Empire.
LAFORGE: Right now relations between us and the Klingons aren't too cosy.
PICARD: I know that. I haven't completely lost my mind, you know.
LAFORGE: Well, if we're going to the Devron system, we're going to need a ship.
PICARD: Right. Now, I think it's time to call in some old favours. Contact Admiral Riker, Starbase two four seven.
(later)
RIKER [on viewscreen]: Jean-Luc, you know I'd like to help, but frankly, what you're asking for is impossible. The Klingons have closed their borders to all Federation starships.
PICARD: Will, if this spatial anomaly really is in the Devron System.
RIKER [on viewscreen]: I saw a report from Starfleet Intelligence this morning on that sector. There is no activity. There is nothing unusual going on in the Devron system.
PICARD: Well I don't believe it! What if their long range scanners are faulty? We have to go there and see for ourselves.
RIKER [on viewscreen]: Look, I've got the Yorktown out near the border. I'll have her run some long range scans in the Devron System. If she finds out anything, I'll let you know.
PICARD: Will, that is just not good enough.
RIKER [on viewscreen]: It's going to have to be. I'm sorry. It's all I can do. Riker out.
DATA: Computer, restore holographic image.
(back comes the fireplace)
PICARD: Damn him, anyway. After all we've been through together. He's been sitting behind that desk too long.
LAFORGE: Captain, I'm sorry. I guess all we can do now is wait and see if the Yorktown finds anything.
DATA: There is another option. We could arrange passage aboard a medical ship.
PICARD: Medical ship?
DATA: Yes, sir. There was an outbreak of Terrellian plague on Romulus. The Klingons have been allowing Federation medical ships to cross the border.
PICARD: Yes. Yes!
LAFORGE: So, What we need is a medical ship.
PICARD: I think I can arrange that. Data, find the USS Pasteur. I have some pull with the Captain. At least, I used to have.

[Future - USS Pasteur Bridge]

(Captained by Beverly Picard)
CRUSHER: (to Data and Geordi) Well, this is a page from the past. I never thought I'd see either of you on a starship again.
LAFORGE: Hello, Doctor.
CRUSHER: Geordi.
DATA: Doctor.
CRUSHER: Data.
(then she goes to Picard and they can't decide whether to shake or hug)
PICARD: Let's just choose one.
CRUSHER: All right.
(they hug)
PICARD: So, did you get my message?
CRUSHER: Yes. Jean-Luc, crossing into Klingon territory. It's absurd. But then I never could say no to you.
PICARD: Oh. So that's why you married me.
CRUSHER: Well now, the first order of business is to get clearance to cross the Klingon border.
LAFORGE: Agreed. What about Worf?
PICARD: Yes, that's it. Worf. Yes, that's the answer. Worf will help us.
LAFORGE: Data, isn't Worf still a member of the Klingon High Council?
DATA: I'm not sure. Information on the Klingon political structure is hard to come by these days. However, at last report Worf was governor of H'atoria, a small Klingon colony near the border. 
CHILTON: Captain Picard?
PICARD + CRUSHER: Yes?
CHILTON: Captain, McKinley Station is signalling. They want to know when we'll be docking.
CRUSHER: Tell McKinley we've been called away on a priority mission.
CHILTON: Aye, sir.
PICARD: So, you kept the name.
CRUSHER: I've prepared quarters for you on deck five. You might want to get some rest.
PICARD: No, I'm fine. I don't need rest.
CRUSHER: Nell, please escort the Ambassador to his quarters.
PICARD: Look, you are treating me as if I am an invalid. I do have a few years left in me yet. I do not want to be led around, and I do not want to be patronised.
CRUSHER: You're right. I'm sorry.
PICARD: Now, I'll go and get some rest.
(Picard leaves)
CRUSHER: How long since his last neurological scan?
LAFORGE: I'm not sure, but I wouldn't try suggesting it. He says he's not taking any more damn tests.
CRUSHER: Do you really think he's moving through time? (silence) I'm not sure I do either. But he's Jean-Luc Picard and if he wants to go on one more mission, that's what we're going to do.

[Future - Pasteur turbolift]

PICARD: We'll find the anomaly. I know we will.
(and steps out into)

[Past - Bridge]

PICARD: Report.
O'BRIEN: We're nearing the coordinates you gave me, sir.
PICARD: Is there anything unusual in the vicinity, Mister Data?
DATA: How would you define unusual, sir? Every region of space has its own unique properties that cannot be found anywhere else.
PICARD: There should be a barrier of some sort nearby. A large plasma field, highly disruptive.
DATA: Nothing, sir.
PICARD: This is the right time, the right place. He should be here now.
O'BRIEN: Who, sir?
PICARD: Q! We're here! This has gone on long enough! Counsellor, do you sense an alien presence?
TROI: No, sir.
WORF: What is a Q?
TASHA: It's a letter of the alphabet, as far as I know.
PICARD: I don't understand. This is not the way it's supposed to happen. Maintain this position. I'll be in my Ready room.

[Courtroom]

(but instead of the Ready room he walks into the courtroom from Encounter at Farpoint wearing his season 7 uniform)
Q: Mon capitane. I thought you'd never get here.
PICARD: Q. I knew it. What's going on?
Q: It's Judge Q to you. And isn't it obvious what's going on?
PICARD: The last time that I stood here was seven years ago.
Q: Seven years ago. How little do you mortals understand time. Must you be so linear, Jean-Luc?
PICARD: You accused me of being the representative of a barbarous species.
Q: I believe my exact words were a dangerous, savage, child race.
PICARD: We demonstrated to you that mankind had become peaceful and benevolent. You agreed and you let us go on our way. Now why am I standing here again?
Q: Oh, you'd like me to connect the dots for you, lead you from A to B to C so your puny mind can comprehend. How boring. They'd be so much more entertained if you tried to figure it out. I'll answer any ten questions that call for a yes or a no. Well?
PICARD: Are you putting mankind on trial again?
Q: No.
PICARD: Is there any connection between the trial seven years ago and whatever's going on now?
Q: I'd have to say yes.
PICARD: The spatial anomaly in the Neutral Zone, is it related to what's happening?
Q: Most definitely yes.
PICARD: Is it part of a Romulan plot, a ploy to start a war?
Q: No and no. Five down.
PICARD: That's only four.
Q: Is it a Romulan plot? Is it a ploy to start a war? Those are separate questions.
PICARD: Did you create the anomaly?
Q: No, no, no. You're going to be so surprised when you realise where it came from, if you ever figure it out.
PICARD: Are you responsible for my shifting through time?
Q: I'll answer that question if you promise you won't tell anyone. (in Picard's ear) Yes.
PICARD: Why?
Q: Sorry. That's not a yes or no question. You forfeit the rest of your questions. I expected as much. You're such a limited creature. A perfect example of why we made our decision. The trial never ended, Captain. We never reached a verdict. But now we have. You're guilty.
PICARD: Guilty of what?
Q: Of being inferior. Seven years ago I said we'd be watching you, and we have been, hoping that your ape-like race would demonstrate some growth, give some indication that your minds have room for expansion. But what have we seen instead? You worrying about Commander Riker's career, listening to Counsellor Troi's pedantic psychobabble, indulging Data in his witless exploration of humanity.
PICARD: We've journeyed to countless new worlds, we've contacted new species, we have expanded our understanding of the universe.
Q: In your own paltry, limited way. You have no idea how far you still have to go. But instead of using the last seven years to change and to grow, you have squandered them.
PICARD: We are what we are, and we're doing the best we can. It is not for you to set the standards by which we should be judged.
Q: Oh, but it is, and we have. Time may be eternal, Captain, but our patience is not. It's time to put an end to your trek through the stars, make room for other more worthy species.
PICARD: You're going to deny us travel through space?
Q: You obtuse piece of flotsam. You are to be denied existence. Humanity's fate has been sealed. You will be destroyed.
PICARD: Q, I do not believe that even you are capable of such an act.
Q: I? There you go again, always blaming me for everything. Well this time I'm not your enemy. I'm not the one that causes the annihilation of mankind. You are.
PICARD: Me?
Q: That's right. You're doing it right now. You did it before and you'll do it again.
PICARD: What sort of meaningless doubletalk is this?
Q: He doesn't understand. I have only myself to blame, I suppose. I believed in you. I thought you had potential. But apparently I was wrong. May whatever god you believe in have mercy on your soul. This court stands adjourned.

[Bridge]

PICARD: Commander, assemble the senior staff and go to Red alert. We have a bigger problem than I thought.
RIKER: Red alert!

[Observation lounge]

LAFORGE: I don't believe him. This has to be another one of Q's games. He's probably listening to us right now, getting a big laugh out of watching us jump through his hoops.
PICARD: Normally I would agree with you, but this time I feel that somehow it is different. There was a deadly earnestness about him. I think he's serious. Which means that in some fashion, I am going to be the cause of the destruction of humanity.
CRUSHER: But didn't Q say you already had caused it?
TROI: And that you were causing it now?
DATA: Given the fact that there is an apparent discontinuity between the three time periods the Captain has visited, Q's statement may be accurate, if confusing.
PICARD: So what am I going to do? Lock myself in a room in all three different time periods?
RIKER: Captain, maybe not acting is what causes the destruction of mankind. What if you were needed on the Bridge at a key moment, and you weren't there?
TROI: I don't think we can start second guessing ourselves. I think we have to proceed normally and deal with each situation as it occurs.
PICARD: Agreed. I've been thinking about my conversation with Q. He admitted that he was responsible for my shifting through time. Now it occurred to me that he might be giving me a chance somehow to save humanity.
RIKER: What makes you say that?
PICARD: Well, he's always had a certain fascination with humanity, with myself in particular. I think he has more than a passing interest in what happens to me.
DATA: That is true. Q's interest in you has always been very similar to that of a master and his beloved pet. That was only an analogy, Captain.
PICARD: If I weren't travelling through time I would never have realized that the anomaly in the Neutral Zone appeared there in the past as well. Assuming that's an important piece of a larger puzzle, my ability to shift through time may be the key to understanding what's going on.
CREWMAN [OC]: Captain Picard.
PICARD: Go ahead.
CREWMAN [OC]: We're approaching the Neutral Zone, Captain.
PICARD: We're on our way.

[Bridge]

PICARD: All stop. Initiate long range scans.
DATA: Captain, there are four warbirds holding position on the Romulan side of the Neutral Zone.
WORF: The Federation Starships Concord and Bozeman are holding position on our side.
RIKER: A face off. The question is, who's going to move first?
PICARD: We are. Mister Worf, hail the Romulan flagship.
WORF: The warbird Terix is responding.
PICARD: On screen.
WORF [on viewscreen]: Captain Picard.

[Future - USS Pasteur Bridge]

CRUSHER: Hello, Worf. It's been a long time.
WORF [on viewscreen]: It is good to see you again.
CRUSHER: Have you had a chance to read our request?
WORF [on viewscreen]: Yes. But you must realise I am no longer a member of the High Council.
PICARD: But surely, Worf, you must still have some influence. We have to get into the Neutral Zone. Can't you just get us permission to cross the border?
WORF [on viewscreen]: I must refuse. It is for your own safety. The Neutral Zone is extremely volatile. If Admiral Riker had given you a starship with a cloak, you would have been safe. It is hard to believe that even he would refuse to help you.
PICARD: I don't care what kind of ship we go in. We have to get to the Devron System.
WORF [on viewscreen]: I am sorry. My first duty is to the Empire. I must adhere to regulations.
PICARD: I know that I'm an old man and I'm out of touch, but the Worf that I remember was more concerned with things like honour and loyalty than rules and regulations. But that was a long time ago. Maybe you're not the Worf once I knew.
WORF [on viewscreen]: Dor sHo GHA! You have always used your knowledge of Klingon honour and tradition to get what you want from me.
PICARD: Because it always works, Worf. Your problem is that you really do have a sense of honour and you really do care about trust and loyalty. Don't blame me for knowing you so well.
WORF [on viewscreen]: Very well. You may cross the border. But only if I come with you. I am familiar with the Neutral Zone.
PICARD: Terms accepted.
(transmission ends)
CRUSHER: Inform transporter room two to beam the Governor aboard. I must make one thing very clear, Jean-Luc. If we run into any serious opposition, I'm taking us back into Federation territory. We aren't well armed and wouldn't last long in a fight.
CHILTON: Governor Worf is aboard, Captain.
CRUSHER: All right. Set course for the Devron system, warp thirteen. (pause) Once more, for old time's sake?
(Picard sits in the Captain's chair and raises his hand)
PICARD: Engage.

[Past - Bridge]

O'BRIEN: Engage to where, sir?
PICARD: Set a course for the Devron system, and engage at warp nine.
TASHA: The Devron System is inside the Neutral Zone, sir.
PICARD: I'm aware of that, Lieutenant. Carry out my orders, Chief.
O'BRIEN: Aye, sir.
TROI: Captain, may I have a word with you in private?
PICARD: Yes of course, Counsellor. Contact Farpoint Station. I wish to speak with Commander Riker.
TASHA: Aye, sir.

[Past - Ready room]

TROI: Captain, I just wanted to voice my concerns about the way the crew is responding to your unexpected orders.
PICARD: They don't trust me. They think that I'm behaving erratically.
TROI: Some do. Others are confused. It takes some time for a new crew to get to know their Captain, and for him to know them.
PICARD: I understand, but I also know what this crew is capable of, even if they don't.
TROI: It would also help if they knew what was going on.
PICARD: I know it's difficult operating in the dark, but right now I don't think I have any other choice.
TASHA [OC]: Yar to Captain Picard. I have Commander Riker for you, sir.
PICARD: Excuse me. Put him through here. Commander Riker. I wanted to inform you that we'll be delayed in picking you up at Farpoint Station.
(we see Farpoint Riker on the monitor, but cut away when he's supposed to be speaking)
RIKER [OC]: I see. May I ask how long?
PICARD: I can't say. I'll keep you updated. Will you inform Doctor Crusher and Lieutenant La Forge of our delay?
RIKER [on monitor]: Understood.
RIKER [OC]: Riker out.
PICARD: Is there anything else, Counsellor?
TROI: Actually, sir, there is. I was debating whether to mention it, and perhaps. It's about Commander Riker.
PICARD: What about him?
TROI: I think you should know he and I have had a prior relationship.
PICARD: I see. Do you think this will interfere with your duties?
TROI: Not at all. It happened several years ago and it's well behind both of us now. I just thought you should know.
PICARD: I appreciate your telling me, but I'm quite sure that the two of you will find some way to deal with the situation.
TROI: Thank you, sir.
(Troi leaves)
PICARD: Tea, Earl Grey, hot.
COMPUTER: That beverage has not been programmed into the replication system.

[Bridge]

TOMOLAK [on viewscreen]: So, Captain how long shall we stare at each other across the Neutral Zone?
PICARD: There is an alternative, Tomolak. We each know why we're here. We could each send one ship into the Neutral Zone to investigate the anomaly in the Devron System.
TOMOLAK [on viewscreen]: Has Starfleet Command approved this arrangement?
PICARD: No.
TOMOLAK [on viewscreen]: I like it already. Agreed. One ship from each side. But I warn you, if another Federation starship tries to enter the Zone.
PICARD: There is no need to make threats. We each know the consequences.
TOMOLAK [on viewscreen]: Very well. I'll see you in the Devron system.
(transmission ends)
PICARD: Helm, set course for the Devron system, warp five.
GATES: Aye, sir.
PICARD: Engage.
(whoosh, and later)
DATA: Sensors are picking up a large subspace anomaly directly ahead.
PICARD: All stop. On screen. Full scan, Mister Data.
DATA: Aye, sir.
PICARD: We have to get as much information as possible about that anomaly.

[Past - Bridge]

DATA: We are approaching the Devron system, Captain. Sensors are picking up a large subspace anomaly directly ahead.
PICARD: All stop. On screen. Then it is larger in the past.
TROI: Sir?
PICARD: Nothing. Full scan, Mister Data.
DATA: Aye, sir.

[Future - USS Pasteur Bridge]

PICARD: On screen! On screen! Let's see it!
(just a starfield)
DATA: As you can see, sir, there's nothing there.
(a little later)
DATA: Still nothing, Captain. I've conducted a full sensor sweep out to one light year from the Pasteur. No temporal anomalies, no particle fluctuations, nothing.
PICARD: I don't understand. It was here in the other two time periods. Why isn't it here now?
WORF: Captain. I have been monitoring Klingon communication channels. Several warships have been dispatched to this sector to search for a renegade Federation vessel.
PICARD: You're not thinking about leaving?
CRUSHER: There's nothing here, Jean-Luc.
PICARD: There should be! There has to be! Data, is there some other way to scan for a temporal disturbance? Something that isn't covered in a normal sensor sweep.
DATA: There are several methods of detecting temporal disturbances, but we're limited by the equipment on the Pasteur.
CRUSHER: We should head back to Federation territory.
DATA: However, it may be possible to modify the main deflector to emit an inverse tachyon pulse, which could scan beyond the subspace barrier.
PICARD: That's it. Make it so.
CRUSHER: Wait a minute. Data, how long would this take?
DATA: To make the modifications and search the entire Devron system will take approximately fourteen hours.
CRUSHER: All right. Data, begin to modify the tachyon pulse. Ensign Chilton, lay in a course back to the Federation. We'll stay here for six more hours, and if we haven't found anything we're heading back, maximum warp.
CHILTON: Aye, sir.
PICARD: But six more hours may not be enough. We have to stay here until we find it, no matter how long it takes.
CRUSHER: Carry out my orders. May I see you a moment?

[Future - USS Pasteur Ready room]

PICARD: Beverly, I cannot believe that you are not willing to stay here until we
CRUSHER: Don't you ever question my orders on the Bridge of my ship again!
PICARD: Damn it, I was just trying to. Look, there are larger concerns here. What you don't understand is that
CRUSHER: I understand that you would never have tolerated that kind of behaviour back on the Enterprise and I won't here. I don't care if you're my ex-Captain or my ex-husband.
PICARD: You're right. I was out of line. It won't happen again. But what you have to understand is what is at stake here. Q has said that all of humanity will be destroyed.
CRUSHER: I know. That's why I've allowed us to stay here longer and keep looking. But I also want you to allow for the possibility that none of what you're saying is real.
PICARD: What?
CRUSHER: Jean-Luc, I care for you too much not to tell you the truth. You have advanced Irumodic Syndrome. It's possible that all of this is in your mind. I'll stay here six hours longer and then we're heading home. I want you to remember, if it were anyone but you, we wouldn't even be here.
(Crusher leaves, Q appears as a ancient man with an ear trumpet)
Q: Eh? What was that she said, sonny? I couldn't quite hear her.
PICARD: Q? What is going on here? Where is the anomaly?
Q: Where's your mommy? Well, I don't know.
PICARD: Answer me.
Q: There is an answer, Jean-Luc, but I can't hand it to you. Although you do have help.
PICARD: What help?
Q: You're not alone, you know. What you were and what you are to become will always with you.
PICARD: My time shifting. The answer does lie there, doesn't it. Now, tell me one thing. This anomaly we're looking for, will that destroy humanity?
Q: You're forgetting, Jean-Luc. You destroy humanity.
PICARD: By doing what? When? How can

[Bridge]

PICARD: Report, Mister Data.
DATA: The anomaly is two hundred million kilometres in diameter. It is a highly focused temporal energy source which is emitting approximately the same energy output as ten G type stars.
PICARD: What is the source of this energy?
DATA: I am uncertain, sir. Sensors are unable to penetrate the anomaly.
PICARD: What if we modified the main deflector to emit an inverse tachyon pulse. That might be able to scan beyond the subspace barrier. That might give us some idea of what the interior of this thing looks like.
DATA: That is a most intriguing idea, sir. I do not believe a tachyon beam was ever used in such a way. I had no idea you were so versed in the intricacies of temporal theory, sir.
PICARD: I have some friends who are quite well versed in it. Make it so.
DATA: I believe we can make the necessary modifications in main Engineering, sir.

[Engineering]

LAFORGE: We can get more power if we reroute the primary EPS taps to the deflector array.
DATA: Agreed. Initiating tachyon pulse.
LAFORGE: Okay. the pulse is holding steady. We're starting to receive data from the scan.
DATA: It will take the computer some time to give us a complete picture of the anomaly's interior. I suggest we
(La Forge holds his head in pain)
DATA: Geordi? What is wrong?
LAFORGE: I don't know. It's like somebody's sticking an ice pick in my temples. My visor's picking up all kinds of electromagnetic fluctuations.
DATA: Data to Sickbay. Medical emergency in main Engineering.

[Sickbay]

CRUSHER: This is amazing. The DNA in his optic nerves is regenerating. Geordi, it's as if you're growing new eyes.
PICARD: How is this possible?
CRUSHER: It shouldn't be possible at all. There's no medical explanation for spontaneous regeneration of an organ.
OGAWA: Doctor we've just gotten reports from two crewmembers who say they have old scars which are healing themselves.
DATA: Captain, I believe I have a partial explanation. I have completed my analysis of the anomaly. It appears to be a multi-phasic temporal convergence in the space-time continuum.
CRUSHER: In English, Data.
DATA: It is, in essence, an eruption of anti-time.
PICARD: Anti-time?
DATA: A relatively new concept in temporal mechanics. The relationship between anti-time and normal time is analogous to the relationship between antimatter and normal matter.
PICARD: So if time and anti-time were to collide
DATA: They would annihilate one other, causing a rupture in space. I believe this is what happened in the Devron system. The rupture may be sending out waves of temporal energy which are disrupting the normal flow of time.
PICARD: Data, what could have caused this collision of time and anti-time?

[Past - Bridge]

DATA: Anti-time, sir? 
PICARD: I believe that if you modify the deflectors to send out an inverse tachyon pulse, then you'll find that the anomaly is a rupture between time and anti-time.
DATA: That is a fascinating hypothesis. How did you formulate
PICARD: I don't have time to discuss it now, Mister Data. Do the modifications and send out the pulse. Then try working on a theory as to what caused this rupture. Mister O'Brien, how large is this anomaly?
O'BRIEN: Approximately four hundred million kilometres in diameter, sir.
PICARD: I don't understand why it's bigger in the past.
PICARD: Lieutenant, you have the Bridge. I'll be in my Ready room.
TASHA: Aye, sir.

[Future - USS Pasteur Bridge]

PICARD: What's going on?
CRUSHER: We're under attack.
CHILTON: Shield strength down to fifty two percent. Minor damage to the port nacelle.
WORF: Two Klingon attack cruisers decloaking to port and starboard.
CRUSHER: Warp speed. Get us out of here.
CHILTON: Warp power's offline, sir.
CRUSHER: Heading one four eight, mark two one five. Full impulse.
CHILTON: Impulse power's fluctuating. Shields down to thirty percent.
PICARD: Weapons status?
WORF: These weapons are no match for their shields.
CRUSHER: Geordi, we need more warp power, now.
LAFORGE: I'm trying, Captain. They're too much for us. I can't keep the phase inducers online.
CHILTON: Shields down to nine percent. One more hit and they'll collapse.
CRUSHER: Open a channel.
CHILTON: Open.
CRUSHER: This is Captain Beverly Picard. We are a medical ship on a mission of mercy. Please break off all (Bang) Worf, signal our surrender.
WORF: Tos Vah'cha Worf, do'lo jegh!
(but they fire again, and Chilton is killed)
WORF: Our shields have collapsed. We are defenceless.
DATA: Captain, another ship decloaking bearing two one five mark three one oh. It's the Enterprise.
(a three-nacelled Enterprise)
DATA: They're hailing us.
CRUSHER: On screen.
RIKER: I had a feeling you weren't going to listen to me. Stand by. I'll see if I can get the Klingons' attention.
(Enterprise phasers slice through the Klingon shields and ships. KaBOOM!)
WORF: The Enterprise is drawing their fire.
CRUSHER: Damage report.
LAFORGE: The warp core has been badly damaged. There's a breach in progress.
PICARD: We have to stop it!
DATA: The Klingon ship is disengaging. Admiral Riker is hailing us.
RIKER: Our sensors indicate your ship has a warp core breach in progress. Prepare for emergency beam out.

[Future Bridge]

(everyone is beamed onto the bridge) 
GAINES: All the Pasteur's crew are safely on board, Admiral.
RIKER: Raise the shields. Where are the Klingons?
GAINES: They're still moving off, sir. Half a light year away.
RIKER: They'll be back. As I said, I figured you wouldn't take no for answer. (to Worf) But I thought you had more sense than to send a defenceless ship across the border into hostile territory with no escort.
WORF: If you had not turned down the Captain when he came to you for help, none of this would have happened. Unlike you, I still have a sense of honour and loyalty.
PICARD: We don't have time for this. The Pasteur's core is going to breach.
RIKER: Take us out of here. Full impulse.
(KaBOOM)
RIKER: All right, let's get out of here.
PICARD: No, Will, we can't! We have to save humanity.
RIKER: Engage cloak.
GAINES: Admiral, we took a direct hit to the starboard plasma coil. Our cloak isn't functioning. Engineering reports it'll be seven hours before we can cloak again.
RIKER: All right, we'll do it the old-fashioned way. Set a course for the Federation, warp thirteen.
PICARD: Will, don't leave! We have to stay here and find what is causing the temporal anomaly.
RIKER: We can't stay, Captain.
PICARD: We have to! Everything depends on it! We can't leave now! Please, listen to me!
(Beverly knocks him out with a hypo)

[Corridor]

(as Picard passes out in the future, he bumps into a crewman in the present)

[Sickbay]

CRUSHER: Your visual acuity's improving by the hour, Geordi.
(she goes over to another bed)
CRUSHER: I'm sorry, Alyssa. May I take another look? You'll have a little tenderness for a few days. That's to be expected.
(Picard enters)
CRUSHER: Jean-Luc. I'll be right back, Alyssa.
(she moves away from Alyssa and her husband)
CRUSHER: Alyssa lost the baby. I think it's the same phenomenon that affected Geordi. Somehow, the temporal energy from the anomaly caused the foetal tissue to revert to an earlier stage of development. It's as if the unborn child began to grow younger, until finally the DNA itself began to break down.
PICARD: How is she?
CRUSHER: Physically, she's fine for now. But if this temporal reversion continues, I don't think any of us are going to be fine for much longer.
PICARD: So this is affecting the entire crew.
CRUSHER: Our cellular structures appear to be coalescing, reverting to earlier forms. In some cases, this has caused old injuries to be healed, but the effect is only temporary. Eventually, may kill all of us.

[Observation lounge]

PICARD: We have to find out how widespread this effect is. Contact Starbase Twenty three, that's the nearest outpost. Have them check their personnel to see if there are any signs of temporal reversion.
TROI: Aye, sir.
PICARD: Mister Data, how close are you to completing the tachyon scan?
DATA: Approximately one hour forty five minutes, sir.
PICARD: Good. When it's done I want you to find some way of collapsing this anomaly without making things worse. Give me a risk analysis of whatever solution you come up with.
DATA: Aye, sir.
PICARD: Dismissed.
(Data, Troi and Riker leave)
Q: It's a pretty big decision, Jean-Luc. Tinkering with an anomaly you know nothing about, trying to collapse it. Isn't that risky?
PICARD: Why? Will that cause the destruction of mankind?
Q: Maybe. On the other hand, maybe leaving it alone would be the wrong thing to do. It's a pretty big decision, all right. Would it help to have a different perspective?

[Primordial Earth]

Q: Welcome home.
PICARD: Home?
Q: Don't you recognise your old stomping grounds? This is Earth, France, about, oh, three and a half billion years ago, give or take an eon or two. Smells awful, doesn't it? All that sulphur and volcanic ash. I really must speak to the maid.
PICARD: Q, is there any point to all this?
Q: Look.
(a purple sky is dominated by a swirling white)
PICARD: So the anomaly is here too, at Earth.
Q: At this point in history the anomaly fills your entire quadrant of the galaxy.
PICARD: The further back in time, the larger the anomaly.
Q: Come here. There's something I want to show you. You see this?
(a sludge filled pond)
Q: This is you. I'm serious. Right here, life is about to form on this planet for the very first time. A group of amino acids are about to combine and form the first protein, the building blocks of what you call life. Strange, isn't it? Everything you know, your entire civilisation, it all begins right here in this little pond of goo. Appropriate, somehow, isn't it? Too bad you didn't bring your microscope. It's really quite fascinating. Oh, look, there they go. The amino acids are moving closer and closer, and closer. Oh! Nothing happened. See what you've done?
PICARD: Are you saying that I caused the anomaly, and that the anomaly somehow disrupted the beginnings of life on Earth?
Q: Congratulations.

[Past - Engineering]

PICARD: Let's concentrate on how this anomaly was initially formed. Speculation?
DATA: Our tachyon pulse has been unable to completely penetrate the anomaly. If we had information on the centre of the phenomenon, we might have a basis for speculation.
PICARD: Is there any way that we can scan the interior?
O'BRIEN: I've tried everything I know. There's just too much interference. There's nothing on board that'll do the job.
PICARD: Do you know what could?
DATA: In theory, a tomographic imaging scanner capable of multiphasic resolution would be able to penetrate this much interference. The Daystrom Institute has been working on such a device, but it is still only theoretical.

[Bridge]

(at the science station)
PICARD: Data do we have a tomographic imaging scanner on board?
DATA: Yes, sir.
PICARD: Can you use it to scan the interior of the anomaly?
DATA: Possibly. (taps the console) There is a great deal of interference, but I am getting some readings. This is very unusual.
PICARD: What is it?
DATA: It appears that our tachyon pulse is converging with two other tachyon pulses at the centre of the anomaly. The other two pulses have the exact same amplitude modulation as our own pulse. It is as if all three originated from the Enterprise.
PICARD: Three pulses, from three time periods, converging at one point in space.
DATA: Captain, what are you suggesting?

[Future - Enterprise guest quarters]

(Picard wakes up)
PICARD: Computer, where is Admiral Riker?
COMPUTER: Admiral Riker is in Ten Forward.

[Future - Ten Forward]

LAFORGE: The ship has held up pretty well over the years.
RIKER: They tried to decommission her about five years ago. One of the advantages of being an Admiral is you get to choose your own ship.
CRUSHER: Will, how long is this thing between you and Worf going to go on?
RIKER: It's been going on for over twenty years. Doesn't look like it's going to end any time soon.
DATA: I suspect the last thing Counsellor Troi would have wanted is for the two of you to be alienated.
CRUSHER: I agree. I think it's time to put it behind you.
RIKER: I tried at Deanna's funeral. He wouldn't even talk to me.
LAFORGE: Might have been tough for him then. He took her death pretty hard.
RIKER: Oh, yeah? Well he wasn't the only one.
CRUSHER: I know, but I think in his mind you were the reason that he and Deanna never got together.
RIKER: I never did anything to stand in his way.
CRUSHER: Didn't you, Will?
RIKER: Did I? I didn't want to admit that it was over. I always thought that we'd get together again. And then she was gone. You think you have all the time in the world, until. Yeah.

[Future - Corridor]

PICARD: Ensign. How do I get to Ten Forward?
ENSIGN: It's four decks down, sir. Section zero zero five.
PICARD: Thank you.

[Future - Ten Forward]

CRUSHER: Oh, my god.
PICARD: Will! Will, I know why it's happening. I know what's causing the anomaly. We have to go back.
RIKER: The only place we're going back to, sir, is bed.
PICARD: Damn it Will, I know why it's happening. We caused the anomaly with the tachyon pulse. It happened three times, Will. We did it in three different time periods!
CRUSHER: I think you'd better come with me.
PICARD: Will you leave me alone? Damn it, I'm not stupid. Will, the tachyon pulses, they were used in the same spot in three different time periods. Don't you see? When the tachyon pulse used. I mean, I mean when the Pasteur used the tachyon pulse, then, then, we I mean everything started, Will. We set everything in motion. It's like the chicken and the egg, Will, the chicken and the egg! We think it started in the past but it didn't. It started right here, in the future. That's why it's getting larger in the past.
DATA: I think I know what the Captain's talking about. If I'm not mistaken, he's describing a paradox.
PICARD: Yes! Right. That's it.
DATA: Intriguing. It is possible we could've caused the very anomaly we've been looking for. Let us assume for a moment that the Captain has been travelling through time. Let us also assume he has initiated an tachyon pulse at the same coordinates in space in all three time periods. In that case, it is possible that the convergence of three tachyon pulses could've ruptured the subspace barrier and created an anti-time reaction.
LAFORGE: I see where you're going, Data. And because anti-time operates opposite the way normal time does, the effects would travel backwards through the space-time continuum.
PICARD: Yes. That's why it gets larger in the past. It grows as it travels backwards in time.
RIKER: All right. Just for the moment lets say that you're right. What do we do?
PICARD: Go back, Will. We go back to the Devron System.
CRUSHER: He may be right.
DATA: If we go back to the Devron system now, we might be able to see the initial formation of the anomaly.
RIKER: Riker to Bridge. Set course for the Devron system, maximum warp.
GAINES [OC]: Aye, sir.
RIKER: Worf, we could use a hand.

[Future - Bridge]

GAINES: Entering the Devron system, sir.
RIKER: Full stop.
DATA: Sensors are picking up a small temporal anomaly off the port bow.
RIKER: On screen.
PICARD: I was right.
LAFORGE: It's an anti-time eruption. It seems to have been formed within the last six hours.
PICARD: We must stop it here so it can't travel back through time.
RIKER: Mister Data, we need a solution and we need it now.
DATA: The anomaly is being sustained by the continuing tachyon pulses in the other two time periods. I suggest shutting them down.
PICARD: The next time I'm there, it's the first thing I'll do.
RIKER: Isn't there something more we can do here to seal the rupture somehow?
DATA: I will investigate the options.

[Bridge]

PICARD: Data, disengage the tachyon pulse.
DATA: Sir?
PICARD: Do it. The convergence of the tachyon pulses from the three time periods is what is causing the anomaly.
DATA: Aye, sir.
PICARD: Is there any change in the anomaly?

[Past - Bridge]

DATA: No, sir.
PICARD: Disengage the tachyon pulse.
O'BRIEN: but e haven't finished the scan, sir.
PICARD: I know that. But it is imperative that you disengage the tachyon pulse immediately.
DATA: Aye, sir. Disengaging.
PICARD: Why isn't the anomaly being affected?
O'BRIEN: Why would it be, sir?

[Future - Bridge]

PICARD: I've shut off the tachyon pulses in the other time periods but it hasn't changed the anomaly.
DATA: It remains unaffected here as well, sir.
CRUSHER: What do we do?
LAFORGE: The only way to stop this thing's to repair the rupture at the focal point where time and anti-time are converging.
RIKER: How do we do that?
DATA: It would require taking the ship into the anomaly itself. Once inside, we may be able to use the engines to create a static warp shell.
LAFORGE: Yeah, Data, that's right. And the shell would act as an artificial subspace barrier separating time and anti-time.
DATA: Collapsing the anomaly and restoring the normal flow of time. But this would have to be done in the other two time periods as well.
PICARD: That could be a problem. The anomaly's so much larger in the other two time periods

[Past - Bridge]

PICARD: It may be dangerous to take the ship in.
O'BRIEN: Take the ship in where, sir?
PICARD: Into the anomaly, Chief. Lay in a course for the exact centre and transfer all available power to the shields.
TASHA: Sir? Can you give us some explanation?
PICARD: No, Lieutenant, I cannot.
TASHA: Captain, so far we've obeyed every order, no matter how far fetched it might have seemed. But if we're to risk the safety of the ship and crew I think we have to ask you for an explanation.
PICARD: I understand your concerns, Lieutenant, and I know if I were in your position I would be doing the same thing. Looking for answers. But you're not going to find any because I don't have any to give you. I know it is difficult for you to understand, but we have to take the ship into the very centre of the phenomenon and create a static warp shell. Now, this will put the ship at risk. Quite frankly, we may not survive. But I want you to believe that I am doing this for a greater purpose, and that what is at stake here is more than any of you can possibly imagine. I know you have your doubts about me, about each other, about the ship. All I can say is that although we have only been together for a short time, I know that you are the finest crew in the fleet and I would trust each of you with my life. So, I am asking you for a leap of faith, and to trust me.
TASHA: Shields up, maximum strength.
WORF: Boosting field integrity to the warp nacelles. We may encounter shearing forces once we enter the anomaly.
DATA: I am preparing to initiate a static warp shell.
O'BRIEN: Course laid in, sir.
TROI: All decks report ready, sir.
PICARD: Take us in, Chief.

[Bridge]

DATA: Captain, I have an idea. If we take the ship to the centre of the anomaly and create a static warp shell
PICARD: A static warp shell. It could repair the barrier and collapse the anomaly.
DATA: Yes, sir.
PICARD: Mister Data, you're a clever man in any time period. Helm, lay in a course for the centre of the anomaly and prepare to initiate a static warp shell.
HELM: Aye, sir.

[Future - Bridge]

PICARD: The other two Enterprises, they're on their way.
RIKER: Very well. Ensign, take us in.

[Past - Bridge]

O'BRIEN: We're entering the anomaly, sir.
PICARD: All hands, brace for impact!
TASHA: The temporal energy's interfering with main power. Switching to

[Bridge]

LAFORGE: Auxiliary power. I'm having trouble keeping the impulse engines online. I've got power fluctuations all across the board.
PICARD: Maintain course and speed. Mister Data, how long until we reach the centre?
DATA: At least thirty seconds, sir.

[Future - Bridge]

GAINES: We've entered the anomaly.

[Past - Bridge]

DATA: We have reached the centre, sir.
PICARD: Initiate warp shell!

[Bridge]

DATA: Initiating static warp shell now.

[Future - Bridge]

RIKER: Is it having any effect?

[Past - Bridge]

DATA: Something is happening. A new subspace barrier appears to be forming,
TASHA: Captain, the sensors are picking up two other ships.
(and we see the other Enterprises on the three viewscreens)

[Past - Bridge]

DATA: Captain, it appears to be working. The anomaly is beginning to collapse. I think that
TASHA: Temporal energy is rupturing our warp containment system!
WORF: We must eject the core!
PICARD: No, we have to maintain the static warp shell as long as possible!
TASHA: We're losing containment, Captain! I can't stop it, it's going to
(KaBOOM!)

[Bridge]

PICARD: Transfer emergency power to the antimatter containment system!
LAFORGE: I'm trying, but there's a lot of interference.
DATA: The warp shell is definitely having an effect, sir. The anomaly is collapsing.
LAFORGE: I can't hold it. The containment system is going.
PICARD: Maintain position! Mister La
(KaBOOM!)

[Future - Bridge]

DATA: Both of the other ships have been destroyed.
Q: Two down, one to go.
PICARD: Data, report!
DATA: The anomaly is nearly collapsed.
LAFORGE: We're losing containment.
Q: Goodbye, Jean-Luc. I'm going to miss you. You had such potential. But then again, all good things must come to an end.
LAFORGE: Containment field is at critical. I'm losing it!
(the anomaly sucks into the Enterprise and KaBOOM!)

[Courtroom]

(Picard is sitting with his head in his hands)
Q: The Continuum didn't think you had it in you, Jean-Luc, but I knew you did.
PICARD: Are you saying that it worked? We collapsed the anomaly?
Q: Is that all this meant to you? Just another spatial anomaly? Just another day at the office?
PICARD: Did it work?
Q: Well, you're here, aren't you? You're talking to me, aren't you?
PICARD: What about my crew?
Q: The anomaly. My crew. My ship. I suppose you're worried about your fish, too. Well, if it puts your mind at ease, you've saved humanity once again.
PICARD: Thank you.
Q: For what?
PICARD: You had a hand in helping me get out of this.
Q: I was the one that got you into it. A directive from the Continuum. The part about the helping hand, thought, was my idea.
PICARD: I sincerely hope that this is the last time that I find myself here.
Q: You just don't get it, do you, Jean-Luc? The trial never ends. We wanted to see if you had the ability to expand your mind and your horizons. And for one brief moment, you did.
PICARD: When I realised the paradox.
Q: Exactly. For that one fraction of a second, you were open to options you had never considered. That is the exploration that awaits you. Not mapping stars and studying nebulae, but charting the unknowable possibilities of existence.
PICARD: Q, what is it that you're trying to tell me?
(Q nearly whispers in Picard's ear)
Q: You'll find out. In any case, I'll be watching. And if you're very lucky, I'll drop by to say hello from time to time. See you out there.

[Corridor]

(Troi and Worf are about to kiss when Picard comes out of the turbolift in his dressing gown)
TROI: Captain, are you all right?
PICARD: Mister Worf, what's the date?
WORF: Stardate 47988.
TROI: Is something wrong, sir?
PICARD: No. No. No. I think I'll get back to bed. I could use some sleep.

Captain's log, supplemental. Starfleet Command reports no unusual activity along the Neutral Zone, and there is no sign of a temporal anomaly. It would appear that I am the only member of the crew to retain any knowledge of the events I experienced.

[Riker's quarters]

(the senior staff poker game has been going for a while)
CRUSHER: Take it.
RIKER: Any time, Doctor.
LAFORGE: Four hands in a row. How does he do it?
RIKER: I cheat. I'm kidding.
CRUSHER: You know, I was thinking about what the Captain told us about the future. About how we all changed and drifted apart. Why would he want to tell us what's to come?
LAFORGE: Sure goes against everything we've heard about not polluting the time line, doesn't it.
DATA: I believe, however, this situation is unique. Since the anomaly did not occur, there have already been changes in the way this time line is unfolding. The future we experience will undoubtedly be different from the one the Captain encountered.
RIKER: Maybe that's why he told us. Knowing what happens in that future allows us to change things now, so that some things never happen.
(Worf and Riker look at each other)
WORF: Agreed.
(doorbell)
RIKER: Come in.
TROI: Am I too late?
RIKER: Of course not. Pull up a chair.
TROI: What's the game?
DATA: Five card draw, deuces wild.
(doorbell)
RIKER: Come.
(Picard enters, and everyone stares)
RIKER: Is there a problem, sir?
PICARD: No. I, er, I just thought that I might, erm, I might join you this evening. If there's room.
RIKER: Of course. Have a seat.
DATA: Would you care to deal, sir?
PICARD: Oh, er, thank you, Mister Data. Actually, I used to be quite a card player in my youth, you know. I should have done this a long time ago.
TROI: You were always welcome.
PICARD: So. Five card stud, nothing wild, and the sky's the limit.

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