Captain's Log, Stardate 2947.3. We have been through a severe ion
storm. One crewman is dead. Ship's damage is considerable. I have
ordered a non-scheduled layover on Starbase Eleven for repairs. A full
report of damages was made to the commanding officer of Starbase
Eleven, Commodore Stone.
(Kirk is not in his usual gold shirt, but a green
one with gold braiding.)
STONE: Maintenance Section Eighteen. The section is working on the
Intrepid. Reschedule. The Enterprise is on priority one. That makes
three times you've read it, Jim. Is there an error?
KIRK: No. But the death of the crewman.
STONE: Regulations, Captain. And the extract from your ship's computer
log confirming this sworn deposition?
KIRK: Kirk to Enterprise.
UHURA [OC]: Bridge here. Go ahead, Captain.
KIRK: Where's Mister Spock with that computer log extract?
UHURA: He should have been there ten minutes ago,
KIRK: Kirk out.
STONE: It's a great pity. The service can't afford to lose men like
Lieutenant Commander Finney.
KIRK: I agree. I waited until the last possible moment. We were on Red
Alert. The storm got worse. I had to jettison the pod.
(The two man transporter alcove in the corner activates.)
KIRK: What took you so long, Mister Spock?
SPOCK: Captain, I believe I
STONE: I'll take that.
(As he puts the data card into his computer, the door opens and a
teenage girl dressed in blue enters.)
JAMIE: There you are. I just wanted one more look at you. The man who
killed my father.
KIRK: That's not so. He was my friend.
JAMIE: Your friend? You hated him all your life! That's why you killed
him, you murderer! You murderer! You murderer!
(She dissolves into tears.)
STONE: Mister Spock, would you please?
SPOCK: Miss Finney, come with me, please.
STONE: Captain Kirk, you say you jettisoned the pod after the Red
KIRK: You have my sworn deposition.
STONE: Then, Captain, I must presume you've committed willful perjury.
This extract from your computer log says you jettisoned the pod before
going to Red Alert. Consider yourself confined to the base. Official
inquiry will determine whether a general court martial is in order.
Captain's Log, Stardate 2948.5. Starship Enterprise
remains in orbit around Starbase Eleven. Full repairs in progress. I've
been ordered to stand by on Starbase Eleven until the inquiry into the
death of Lieutenant Commander Finney can be conducted. I'm confident of
(Kirk and McCoy enter, and go to the bar.)
KIRK: Timothy, I haven't seen you since the Vulcanian expedition. (no
reply) Well, I see our graduating class from the Academy is well
represented. Corrigan. Teller. How you doing, Mike?
MIKE: (An older man in a gold shirt) I'll get by, Jim.
TIMOTHY: (Dark hair, red shirt) I understand you're laying over for
repairs. Big job?
KIRK: Couple of days.
TIMOTHY: You moving out then?
KIRK: In a hurry to see me go?
TIMOTHY: Oh, I just wondered how long it'd take to get a new records
KIRK: You can talk plainer than that.
TIMOTHY: I can, but I think the point's been made. Ben was a friend of
MCCOY: Come on, Jim. Let's go.
KIRK: Go on. Finish. Ben was a friend of yours, and
KIRK: Go on. I'm waiting to hear the rest.
MIKE: Why don't you tell us?
KIRK: What would be the point? You've already made up your minds.
Excuse me, Bones.
(Leaves, just as a lady in a floaty green dress enters.)
MCCOY: If you have any doubt, that was indeed Captain James Kirk of the
SHAW: Yes, I know. Are you a friend of his?
MCCOY: In these trying times, one of the few. Doctor Leonard McCoy. And
SHAW: Areel Shaw. And I'm a friend, too. An old one.
MCCOY: All of my old friends look like doctors. All of his look like
you. Well, you might as well join me for a drink. With this inquiry
coming up, he's going to need all the friends he can get.
COMPUTER: Recording inquiry. Matter. Captain Kirk,
James T. Subject. Circumstances of death, Lieutenant Commander Finney,
STONE: This inquiry, to determine whether a general court-martial
should be convened against Captain Kirk on charges of perjury and
STONE: Let us begin with your relationship with Commander Finney. You
knew him for a long time, didn't you?
KIRK: Yes. He was an instructor at the Academy when I was a midshipman,
but that didn't stand in the way of our beginning a close friendship.
His daughter Jamie, who was here last night, was named after me.
STONE: It's common knowledge that something happened to your
KIRK: It's no secret. We were assigned to the same ship some years
later. I relieved him on watch once and found a circuit open to the
atomic matter piles that should've been closed. Another five minutes,
it could have blown up the ship.
COMPUTER: Ship nomenclature. Specify.
KIRK: United Starship Republic, number 1371.
KIRK: I closed the switch and logged the incident. He drew a reprimand
and was sent to the bottom of the promotion list.
STONE: And he blamed you for that?
KIRK: Yes. He had been at the Academy for an unusually long time as an
instructor. As a result, he was late
in being assigned to a starship. The delay, he felt, looked bad on his
record. My action, he believed, made things worse.
STONE: Comment. Service record of Lieutenant Commander Finney to be
appended this inquiry.
STONE: Now let's get into the specifics of the storm, Captain.
KIRK: Weather scan indicated an ion storm dead ahead. I sent Finney
into the pod.
STONE: Why Finney?
KIRK: His name was at the top of the duty roster.
STONE: If he blamed you
KIRK: He may have blamed me that he never rose to command a ship, but I
don't assign jobs on the basis of who blames me. It was Finney's turn,
and I assigned him. He had just checked in with me from the pod when we
hit the leading edge of the storm. Not too bad at first. I signalled a
Yellow Alert. Then we began encountering pressure, variant stress,
force seven, the works. I finally signaled a Red Alert. Finney knew he
had a matter of seconds. I gave him those seconds and more. But
apparently it wasn't enough.
STONE: Then why, Captain, does the computer log from your ship, made
automatically at the time, indicate that you were still on Yellow Alert
when you jettisoned and not on Red?
KIRK: I don't know. There's been a mistake.
STONE: It would seem so. Could the computer be wrong?
KIRK: Mister Spock is running a survey right now, but the odds are next
STONE: Stop recording. Now, look, Jim. Not one man in a million could
do what you and I have done. Command a starship.
A hundred decisions a day, hundreds of lives staked on you making every
one of them right. You're played out, Jim. Exhausted.
KIRK: Is that the way you see it?
STONE: That's the way my report'll read if you co-operate.
KIRK: A physical breakdown. Possibly even mental collapse.
KIRK: I'd be admitting a man died because
STONE: Admit nothing. Say nothing. Let me bury the matter here and now.
No starship captain has ever stood trial before, and I don't want you
to be the first.
KIRK: But if what you suspect is true, then I'm guilty. I should be
STONE: I'm thinking of the service. I won't have it smeared.
KIRK: By what, Commodore Stone?
STONE: All right. By an evident perjurer who's either covering his bad
judgment, his cowardice, or
KIRK: That's as far as you go, sir. I'm telling you I was there on the
Bridge. I know what happened. I know what I did.
STONE: It's in the transcript, and computer transcripts don't lie. I'm
telling you, Captain, either you accept a permanent ground assignment,
or the whole disciplinary weight of Starfleet command is going to light
right on your neck.
KIRK: So that's the way we do it now? Sweep it under the rug, and me
along with it? Not on your life. I intend to fight.
STONE: Then you draw a general court.
KIRK: Draw it? I demand it. And right now, Commodore Stone. Right now.
Captain's Log, Stardate 2948.9. The officers who
will comprise my court-martial board are proceeding to Starbase Eleven.
Meanwhile, repairs on the Enterprise are almost complete.
(Kirk goes to the table of the lady in green, and
kisses her hands.)
KIRK: Areel. Doctor McCoy said you were here. I should have felt it in
the air, like static electricity.
SHAW: Flattery will get you everywhere.
KIRK; It's been, how long has it been?
SHAW: Four years, seven months, and an odd number of days. Not that I'm
KIRK: You look marvellous. You haven't changed a bit.
SHAW: But things have changed for you, haven't they?
KIRK: Oh, you've heard about that, have you?
SHAW: I'm a lawyer in the Judge Advocate's office, remember?
KIRK: I remember. Let's forget it. We have a lot of lost time to make
SHAW: You're taking it very lightly.
KIRK: The confidence of an innocent man.
SHAW: Are you? That's not what the rumours indicate.
KIRK: Look, Let's not talk shop.
SHAW: Jim, this could ruin you. Will you take some advice?
KIRK: I never could talk you into anything. All right. Fire away.
SHAW: The prosecution will build its case on the basis of Kirk versus
the computer. Now if your attorney tries to defend on that basis, you
won't have a chance.
KIRK: What other choice is there?
SHAW: That's up to your attorney, and that's why he's got to be a good
KIRK: You, perhaps?
SHAW: No, I'm busy.
KIRK: Well, a girl with your ability should be able to handle two cases
SHAW: Jim, be serious. You're not an ordinary human. You're a Starship
Captain, and you've stepped into scandal. If there's any way they can
do it, they'll slap you down hard and permanently for the good of the
KIRK: You still haven't made any recommendation.
SHAW: Samuel T. Cogley, attorney at law. If anyone can save you, he
can. He'll be paying you a visit. Jim, I've got to go.
KIRK: Areel, you still haven't told me how you know so much about what
the prosecution's going to do.
SHAW: Because, Jim Kirk, my dear old love, I am the prosecution, and I
have to do my very best to have you slapped down hard. Broken out of
the service, in disgrace.
(Kirk is about to pour himself a drink.)
COGLEY: You Kirk?
KIRK: Yes. (Notices the piles of books everywhere) What is all this?
COGLEY: I figure we'll be spending some time together, so I moved in.
KIRK: I hope I'm not crowding you.
COGLEY: What's the matter? Don't you like books?
KIRK: Oh, I like them fine, but a computer takes less space.
COGLEY: A computer, huh? I got one of these in my office. Contains all
the precedents. The synthesis of all the great legal decisions written
throughout time. I never use it.
KIRK: Why not?
COGLEY: I've got my own system. Books, young man, books. Thousands of
them. If time wasn't so important, I'd show you something. My library.
Thousands of books.
KIRK: And what would be the point?
COGLEY: This is where the law is. Not in that homogenised, pasteurised,
synthesiser. Do you want to know the law, the ancient concepts in their
own language, Learn the intent of the men who wrote them, from Moses to
the tribunal of Alpha 3? Books.
KIRK: You have to be either an obsessive crackpot who's escaped from
his keeper or Samuel T. Cogley, attorney at law.
COGLEY: Right on both counts. Need a lawyer?
KIRK: I'm afraid so.
(There are four officers in dress uniform on the
bench, including Stone.)
STONE: This court is now in session. I have appointed as members of
this court Space Command Representative Lindstrom,
Starship Captains Krasnovsky and Chandra. Captain Kirk, I direct your
attention to the fact that you have a right to ask for substitute
officers if you feel that any of these named harbour any prejudiced
attitudes to your case.
KIRK: I have no objections, sir.
STONE: Do you consent to the service Lieutenant Shaw as prosecuting
officer and to myself as president of the court?
KIRK: I do, sir.
STONE: All right, clerk.
COMPUTER: Charge, culpable negligence. Specification in that on
Stardate 2945.7, by such negligence, Captain Kirk, James T., did cause
loss of life, to wit, the life of Records Officer Lieutenant Commander
Finney, Benjamin. To all recorded charges and specifications, what is
KIRK: Not guilty.
STONE: Proceed, Lieutenant.
SHAW: I call Mister Spock.
(Spock hands over his data chip, sits down and puts his hand on the lie
COMPUTER: Spock, serial number S179-276SP. Service rank, Lieutenant
Commander. Position, First officer, science officer. Current
assignment, USS Enterprise. Commendations, Vulcanian Scientific Legion
Awards of valour. Twice decorated by Starfleet command.
SHAW: Mister Spock, as a First officer, you know a great deal about
computers, don't you?
SPOCK: I know all about them.
SHAW: It is possible for a computer to malfunction, is it not?
SHAW: Do you know of any malfunction which has caused an inaccuracy in
the Enterprise computer?
SHAW: That answer is based on your mechanical survey of the Enterprise
computer ordered by the defendant prior to this trial, is it not?
SHAW: Now the stardate
SPOCK: But the computer is inaccurate, never the less.
SHAW: Why do you say that?
SPOCK: It reports that the jettison button was pressed before the Red
SHAW: In other words, it reports that Captain Kirk was reacting to an
extreme emergency that did not then exist.
SPOCK: And that is impossible.
SHAW: Is it? Were you watching him the exact moment he pressed the
SPOCK: No, I was occupied. The ship was already on Yellow Alert.
SHAW: Then how can you dispute the finding of the log?
SPOCK: I do not dispute it. I merely state that it is wrong.
SHAW: Oh? On what do you base that statement?
SPOCK: I know the Captain. He is in
SHAW: Please instruct the witness not to speculate.
SPOCK: Lieutenant, I am half Vulcanian. Vulcanians do not speculate. I
speak from pure logic. If I let go of a hammer on a planet that has a
positive gravity, I need not see it fall to know that it has in fact
SHAW: I do not see what that has to
SPOCK: Gentlemen, human beings have characteristics just as inanimate
objects do. It is impossible for Captain Kirk to act out of panic or
malice. It is not his nature.
SHAW: In your opinion.
SPOCK: Yes. In my opinion.
SHAW: Thank you. Your witness, Mister Cogley.
COGLEY: No questions.
STONE: You may step down.
SHAW: I now call the personnel officer for the Enterprise.
COMPUTER: Service rank, Ensign. Position, personnel officer. Current
assignment, USS Enterprise.
SHAW: In the course of your duties as personnel officer of the
Enterprise, you would be familiar with the service records of all
ENSIGN: (A young Asian woman) Yes, ma'am.
SHAW: With reference to Records Officer Finney, was there in his
service record a reported disciplinary action for failure to close a
ENSIGN: Yes, ma'am.
SHAW: Was the charge in that instance based upon a log entry by the
officer who relieved him?
ENSIGN: Yes, ma'am.
SHAW: And who was that officer?
ENSIGN: Ensign James T. Kirk.
SHAW: Louder, please, for the court.
ENSIGN: Ensign James T. Kirk.
SHAW: Now the Captain Kirk who sits in this courtroom?
ENSIGN: Yes, ma'am.
SHAW: Thank you. Do you wish to cross-examine, Mister Cogley?
COGLEY: No questions.
STONE: You may step down.
SHAW: I now call Doctor McCoy to the stand.
COMPUTER: Service rank, Lieutenant Commander. Position, Ship's Surgeon.
Current assignment, USS Enterprise. Commendations, Legion of Honour.
Awards of valour. Decorated by Starfleet surgeons.
SHAW: Doctor, you are, on the record, an expert in psychology,
especially space psychology. Patterns which develop in the close
quarters of a ship during long voyages in deep space.
MCCOY: I know something about it.
SHAW: You have just heard the testimony of your own personnel officer,
that it was an action of the then Ensign Kirk, which placed an
unerasable blot on the record of the then Lieutenant Finney.
Psychologically, Doctor, is it possible that Lieutenant Finney blamed
Kirk for the incident?
MCCOY: It's possible.
SHAW: He could have hated Kirk down through the years, blamed him for
being passed over for promotion, blamed him for never being given a
command of his own, correct?
MCCOY: He could have.
SHAW: Now, let us hypothesise, Doctor. Is it normal for a person to
return affection for hatred?
SHAW: Do we not tend to at first resent and then actively dislike the
person who hates us?
MCCOY: Wait a minute. I don't quite follow you.
SHAW: Hypothetically. Would not Captain Smith begin to hate Lieutenant
Commander Jones once he learned that Lieutenant Commander Jones hated
and detested him?
MCCOY: Well, yes, I suppose it could happen.
SHAW: Then I ask you, is it not possible that Captain Kirk became aware
of Lieutenant Commander Finney's hatred toward him
and perhaps, even involuntarily, began to reciprocate?
MCCOY: Not Captain Kirk.
SHAW: Any normal human, Doctor. Is it possible?
MCCOY: But he's not that kind of a man.
SHAW: Is it theoretically possible, Doctor?
MCCOY: Yes. It's possible.
SHAW: Thank you. Your witness, Mister Cogley.
COGLEY: No questions.
STONE: You may step down. Mister Cogley. You've listened to testimony
from three witnesses, and in neither instance have you availed yourself
of your right to cross-examine. Have you abrogated that right?
COGLEY: Well, sir, the truth is, I've been holding back till we get
this preliminary business out of the way. I'd like to call Captain Kirk
to the stand.
COMPUTER: James T. Kirk, serial number SC937-0176CEC. Service rank,
Captain. Position, Starship command. Current assignment, USS
Enterprise. Commendations, Palm Leaf Of Axanar Peace Mission, Grankite
Order of Tactics, Class of Excellence, Prantares Ribbon of
Commendation, Classes first and second
SHAW: May it please the court.
STONE: Court recognises counsel for the prosecution.
SHAW: The prosecution concedes the inestimable record of Captain Kirk.
STONE: Mister Cogley?
COGLEY: I wouldn't want to slow the wheels of progress. But then on the
other hand, I wouldn't want those wheels to run over my client in their
COMPUTER: Awards of valour, Medal of Honour, Silver Palm with Cluster,
Starfleet citation for Conspicuous Gallantry, Karagite Order of Heroism
COGLEY: Stop. I think that's enough. I wouldn't want to slow things up
SHAW: Thank you.
COGLEY: Now, Captain, despite what these machines indicate, was there
indeed a Red Alert before you jettisoned the pod?
KIRK: Yes, sir, there was.
COGLEY: Please tell us about it.
KIRK: Firstly, I am at a loss to explain the errors in the extract from
the computer log. We were in an ion storm. Everyone here in this court
knows the dangers involved. I was in command. The decisions were mine,
no one else's. Charges of malice have been raised. There was no malice.
Lieutenant Commander Finney was a member of my crew, and that's exactly
the way he was treated. It has been suggested that I panicked on the
bridge and jettisoned the ion pod prematurely. That is not so. You've
heard some of the details of my record. This was not my first crisis.
It was one of many. During it, I did what my experience and training
required me to do. I took the proper steps in the proper order. I did
exactly what had to be done, exactly when it should have been done.
COGLEY: You did the right thing, but would you do it again?
KIRK: Given the same circumstances I would do the same thing without
hesitation, because the steps I took in the order I took them were
absolutely necessary if I were to save my ship. And nothing is more
important than my ship.
COGLEY: Your witness, Miss Shaw.
SHAW: The prosecution does not wish to dishonour this man, but facts
are facts. I must invite the attention of the court and Captain Kirk to
this visual extract from the Enterprise computer log. Play back. What
you are about to see is precisely what took place on the Enterprise
bridge during the ion storm.
(On the courtroom viewscreen)
UHURA: Meteorology reports ion storm upcoming, Captain.
KIRK: We'll need somebody in the pod for readings.
SPOCK: Mister Finney is top of duty roster, Captain.
KIRK: Post him.
SPOCK: Attention, Commander Finney, report to pod for reading on ion
FINNEY [OC]: Message Received.
SPOCK: Officer posted, Captain.
(The ship suddenly judders)
KIRK: Stand by on alert status, Mister Spock.
HANSON: Approaching ion storm, sir.
KIRK: Warp factor one, Mister Hanson.
HANSON: Warp one, sir.
(There's another sharp jerk, and Kirk presses a button on his chair
SHAW: Reverse. Stop. Go forward with magnification
on the panel. Freeze that. Captain Kirk is now signalling a Yellow
Alert. Go forward, normal view.
(On courtroom viewscreen.)
UHURA: Call from the pod, sir.
KIRK: Tie in.
FINNEY [OC]: Finney here, Captain. Ion readings in progress.
KIRK: Make it fast, Ben. I may have to go to Red Alert.
FINNEY [OC]: Affirmative.
KIRK: Hold our course, Mister Hanson.
HANSON: Aye, aye, sir. Natural vibrations, force two, Captain. Force
KIRK: Engineering, then ion pod.
UHURA: Aye, aye, sir.
CREWMAN [OC]: Engineering.
KIRK: One third more thrust.
CREWMAN [OC]: Working.
FINNEY [OC]: Ion pod.
KIRK: Stand by to get out of there, Ben.
FINNEY [OC]: Aye, aye, sir.
HANSON: Force five, sir.
KIRK: Steady as she goes, Mister Hanson.
(And the close up on the Captain's panel shows...)
SHAW: Freeze that! If the court will notice, the
log plainly shows the defendant's finger pressing the jettison button.
The condition signal reads Yellow Alert. Not red alert, but simply
Yellow Alert. When the pod containing Lieutenant Commander Finney was
jettisoned, the emergency did not as yet exist.
KIRK: But that's not the way it happened.
Captain's Log, Stardate 2949.9. The evidence
presented by the visual playback to my general court-martial was
damning. I suspect even my attorney has begun to doubt me.
COGLEY: Computers don't lie.
KIRK: Are you suggesting that I did?
COGLEY: I'm suggesting that maybe you did have a lapse. It was
possible, you know, with the strain you were under. There's still time
to change our plea. I could get you off.
KIRK: Two days ago, I would've staked anything on my judgment.
COGLEY: You did. Your professional career.
KIRK: I spent my whole life training for decisions just like that one.
My whole life. Is it possible that when the moment came? No. I know
what I did. You can pull out if you want to.
COGLEY: There's no place to go, except back to court and hear the
KIRK: Kirk here.
SPOCK: I've run a complete megalyte survey on the
KIRK: I'll tell you what you found. Nothing, right?
SPOCK: You sound bitter, Captain.
KIRK: Not bitter enough to forget to thank you for
SPOCK: Further instructions?
KIRK: No. It's not all bad, Mister Spock. Who
knows. You may be able to beat your next captain at chess. Kirk out.
(The door opens)
KIRK: Jamie. This is Lieutenant Commander Finney's daughter.
JAMIE: Mister Cogley, we've got to stop this. Make him take a ground
assignment. I realise it wasn't his fault. I won't make any trouble.
Make him change his plea.
KIRK: It's too late for that, Jamie, but I'm glad you don't blame me
anymore for what happened.
JAMIE: I was just so upset that night. I'm sorry.
KIRK: Don't say any more.
JAMIE: But I have to. I never realised how close you and Dad had been
until I read through some papers he wrote, letters to Mother and me. I
don't know how I ever could've thought that you. Mister Cogley, ruining
Jim won't change what's happened.
COGLEY: That's very commendable, Miss Finney, but most unusual. After
all, Captain Kirk is accused of causing your father's death, and the
evidence would indicate his guilt.
JAMIE: I was just thinking of Jim.
KIRK: I know, and I thank you. I have to go and change. You ready?
COGLEY: No, but I may be getting ready.
COMPUTER: Bishop, half level right.
MCCOY: Well, I had to see it to believe it.
MCCOY: They're about to lop off the captain's professional head, and
you're sitting here playing chess with the computer.
SPOCK: That is true.
MCCOY: Mister Spock, you're the most cold-blooded man I've ever known.
SPOCK: Why, thank you, Doctor. I've just won my fourth game.
MCCOY: That's impossible.
SPOCK: Observe for yourself. Rook to king's pawn four.
COMPUTER: Bishop, half level right.
SPOCK: Now, this is the computer's move. And now mine. (takes the
bishop) Checkmate. Mechanically, the computer's flawless. Therefore,
logically, its report of the captain's guilt is infallible. I could not
accept that, however.
MCCOY: So you tested the programme bank.
SPOCK: Exactly. I programmed it myself for chess some months ago. The
best I should have been able to attain was a draw.
MCCOY: Well, why are you just sitting there?
SPOCK: Transporter room, stand by. We're beaming down.
STONE: Court is now in session. The board will
entertain motions before delivering its verdict. Counsel for the
SHAW: Sir, the prosecution rests.
STONE: Counsel for the defence?
COGLEY: Sir, the defence rests.
(McCoy and Spock run in and whisper to Kirk and Cogley)
STONE: Mister Cogley. Mister Cogley!
COGLEY: Sir, some new evidence has just been brought to my attention.
I'd like to ask the court to
SHAW: Objection! Counsel for the defence has rested his case.
STONE: Of what nature is this evidence?
COGLEY: I can't tell you, I'll have to show you.
SHAW: Mister Cogley is well-known for his theatrics.
COGLEY: Is saving an innocent man's career a theatric? i
STONE: Counsels will kindly direct their remarks to the bench.
COGLEY: I'd be delighted to, sir, now that I've got something human to
talk about. Rights, sir, human rights. The Bible, the Code of Hammurabi
and of Justinian, Magna Carta, the Constitution of the United States,
Fundamental Declarations of the Martian colonies, the Statutes of Alpha
Three. Gentlemen, these documents all speak of rights. Rights of the
accused to a trial by his peers, to be represented by counsel, the
rights of cross-examination, but most importantly, the right to be
confronted by the witnesses against him, a right to which my client has
SHAW: Your Honour, that is ridiculous. We produced the witnesses in
court. My learned opponent had the opportunity to see them,
COGLEY: All but one. The most devastating witness against my client is
not a human being. It's a machine, an information system. The computer
log of the Enterprise. Can ask this court adjourn and reconvene aboard
SHAW: I protest, Your Honour.
COGLEY: And I repeat, I speak of rights. A machine has none. A man
must. My client has the right to face his accuser, and if you do not
grant him that right, you have brought us down to the level of the
machine. Indeed, you have elevated that machine above us. I ask that my
motion be granted, and more than that, gentlemen. In the name of
humanity, fading in the shadow of the machine, I demand it. I demand
Captain's Log, Stardate 2950.1. After due
consideration, the general court-martial has reconvened on board the
COGLEY: How many games of chess did you win from
the computer, Mister Spock?
SPOCK: Five in all.
COGLEY: May that be considered unusual?
SPOCK: I personally programmed the computer for chess months ago. I
gave the machine an understanding of the game equal to my own. The
computer cannot make an error and assuming that I do not either, the
best that could normally be hoped for would be stalemate after
stalemate, and yet I beat the machine five times. Someone, either
accidentally or deliberately, adjusted the programming and therefore
the memory banks of that computer.
COGLEY: Could that have had an effect on the visual playback we saw?
SHAW: Object! The witness would be making a conclusion.
COGLEY: Hypothetically, Mister Spock. Hypothetically, Miss Shaw. If
what you suggest had been done, it would be beyond the capabilities of
most men. Is that true?
COGLEY: What man aboard ship would it not be beyond?
SPOCK: The Captain, myself, and the records officer.
COGLEY: And at the moment, you have no records officer.
SPOCK: Affirmative. Until he was lost, our records officer was
Lieutenant Commander Finney.
COGLEY: Captain Kirk, will you tell the steps you took to find Mister
Finney after the storm?
KIRK: I instituted a phase one search.
COGLEY: Describe a phase one search.
KIRK: It's a painstaking, thorough attempt in and around the ship to
find a man who's presumably injured and unable to respond.
COGLEY: It presupposes, does it not, that a man wishes to be found?
KIRK: I beg your pardon?
COGLEY: If you start a search for a man, you assume, don't you, that he
wants to be found? He's not hiding?
COGLEY: On a ship of this size, could a man evade such a search?
COGLEY: Gentlemen, I submit to you that Lieutenant Commander Ben Finney
is not dead.
STONE: Mister Cogley, we are waiting for proof of
the extraordinary statement you made in the briefing room.
COGLEY: You shall have it, but first I need the co-operation of this
court in conducting an experiment. Captain Kirk.
KIRK: Gentlemen, for the purposes of this experiment, it'll be
necessary for all personnel, except for members of the court and the
command crew, to leave the ship. I am ordering all others to report to
the transporter room.
COGLEY: Including myself, sir.
STONE: This court is by no means adjourned, Mister Cogley.
COGLEY: I have an errand ashore of vital importance to the purpose of
this court, and I will return.
STONE: Very well.
COGLEY: Thank you, sir.
(Leaves with the spare crew members.)
STONE: Captain, are you maintaining an engine crew aboard?
KIRK: Our impulse engines have been shut down. We'll maintain orbit by
KRASNOVSKY: And when the orbit decays?
KIRK: We hope to be finished long before that.
(A little later)
KIRK: Ready, Mister Spock?
SPOCK: Affirmative, Captain.
KIRK: Gentlemen, this computer has an auditory sensor. It can, in
effect, hear sounds. By installing a booster, we can increase that
capability on the order of one to the fourth power. The computer should
bring us every sound occurring on the ship.
CREWMAN [OC]: All personnel have left the ship as ordered, sir.
KIRK: Doctor McCoy? All right, Mister Spock.
(A cacophony of heartbeats comes over the bridge speakers.)
KIRK: Turn it down a little. Gentlemen, that sound is caused by the
heartbeats of all the people on board the ship. Doctor McCoy will use
this white sound device to mask out each person's heartbeat so that it
will be eliminated from the sounds we are hearing.
MCCOY: First, the Captain. Mister Spock.
(He goes around the assembled group one at a time)
MCCOY: And lastly, myself.
KIRK: That's all of us, except for crewman in the transporter room.
Mister Spock, eliminate his heartbeat. That accounts for everyone.
(But still one heart beats over the speakers.)
KIRK; Localise that.
SPOCK: B deck, in or near Engineering.
KIRK: Seal off B deck, sections 18Y through 23D.
STONE: So Finney is alive.
KIRK: It would seem so. Commodore, this is my problem. I'd appreciate
it if no one left the bridge.
(Armed with a phaser, Kirk makes his way alone.)
KIRK [OC]: Sam Cogley had gone a shore to bring Jamie Finney on board.
We felt Jamie's
presence would make Finney easier to handle in the event Finney really
KIRK [OC]: Ben Finney.
HANSON: Mister Spock, encountering variants.
SHAW: What does that mean?
STONE: The orbit is beginning to decay.
KIRK: Ben, where are you?
FINNEY [OC]: Hello, Captain!
FINNEY [OC]: Nothing to say
FINNEY [OC]: Captain?
KIRK: I'm glad you're alive.
FINNEY [OC]: You mean you're relieved because you think your career is
Well, you're wrong.
KIRK: Ben! Ben, it's not too late. We can help you.
FINNEY [OC]: Like you helped me all along? Kept me down
FINNEY [OC]: Robbed me of my own command?
FINNEY [OC]: I'm a good officer, as good as you.
I've watched you for years. The great Captain Kirk.
(We finally see the man, as he jabs a phaser into Kirk's back)
FINNEY: They told you to do it to me. You all conspired against me. You
ruined me, but you won't do it anymore.
(He disarms Kirk and throws the weapon away. Kirk turns to face him.)
KIRK: Put the phaser down, Ben.
FINNEY: Oh, I wouldn't kill you, Captain. Your own death would mean too
little to you, But your ship
KIRK: What about my ship?
FINNEY: It's dead. I've killed it. I tapped out your primary energy
KIRK: Mister Spock, what's our orbit status?
SPOCK: Decaying, Captain.
HANSON: Variants at second level
HANSON [OC]: Depreciating unusually fast.
FINNEY: You're out of power. I know the ship, too. The Enterprise
should've been mine. You kept me from it.
KIRK: Ben. Why kill innocent people?
FINNEY: Innocent? Officers and gentlemen, Captains all. Except for
Finney and his one mistake. A long time ago, but they don't forget.
KIRK: I logged the mistake, Ben. Blame me, not them.
FINNEY [OC]: But they are to blame. All of them.
FINNEY: I was a good officer. I really was. I loved
the service more than any man ever dared.
HANSON: Mister Spock, we're running out of time.
SPOCK: Gentlemen, if you'll please hurry to the transporter room
STONE: Mister Spock, the court has not yet reached a verdict. We will
hear this witness out.
SPOCK: Very well, sir.
KIRK: It's not too late. You can be helped. But if
you kill those people
FINNEY: Why shouldn't I? They killed me, didn't they? It's a fair
KIRK: Is Jamie included in that deal?
FINNEY: What do you mean?
KIRK: She's on board by now. Yes. She's on board.
FINNEY: What? Why did you do that? Why did you bring her here? I'll
(Kirk takes his opportunity to grapple with the bigger man. There's a
fight in which Kirk's shirt gets torn. Finney swings at Kirk with a
wrench, but finally has his lights punched out.)
KIRK [OC]: Beaten and sobbing, Finney told me where he had sabotaged
the prime energy circuits.
KIRK [OC]: The damage he'd caused was considerable,
but not irreparable. With luck, I would be able to effect repairs
before our orbit decayed completely.
(For repairs, read pulling cables out of junction boxes.)
HANSON: Power returning, Mister Spock. Up fourteen
points and rising.
SPOCK: Activate port impulse engines. One third power.
(Uhura takes navigation)
HANSON: One third power.
UHURA: Variants fading.
HANSON: Orbit stabilising.
UHURA: All secure, sir.
STONE: Unless the prosecution has an objection, I rule this court to be
SHAW: Absolutely no objection, sir.
(Later, Kirk is in a fresh new shirt, and talking quietly to Areel in
front of the turbolift doors. Around them it is business as usual.)
SHAW: How long will it be this time before I see you again?
KIRK: At the risk of sounding like a mystic, that depends on the stars.
SHAW: Sam Cogley asked me to give you something special. It's not a
first edition, just a book. Sam says that makes it special.
KIRK: I didn't have much of a chance to thank him.
SHAW: He's busy on a case. He's defending Ben Finney. He says he'll
KIRK: I wouldn't be a bit surprised.
SHAW: Do you think it would cause a complete breakdown of discipline if
a lowly lieutenant kissed a Starship Captain
on the bridge of his ship?
KIRK: Let's try. (a gentle but lingering kiss) See? No change.
Discipline goes on.
SHAW: And so must the Enterprise. Goodbye, Jim.
KIRK: Goodbye, Areel. Better luck next time.
SHAW: I had pretty good luck this time. I lost, didn't l?
(She leaves, blowing him a final kiss. He pulls himself together, goes
to his chair and sits between two stony-faced officers.)
KIRK: She's a very good lawyer.
MCCOY: Indeed she is.