SULU: Approaching planet Omega Four, sir. Object
ahead. Another vessel in planet orbit, Captain.
KIRK: Lieutenant, sound alert.
UHURA: Aye, sir. All decks report ready, sir.
KIRK: Long range sensor scan, Mister Sulu.
SULU: It's the USS Exeter, sir.
KIRK: Try to contact her, Lieutenant.
UHURA: Aye, sir.
KIRK: The Exeter. she was patrolling in this area six months ago. I
hadn't heard of any trouble.
UHURA: Receiving no response to our signal, sir.
SULU: The sensors indicate no damage to the vessel, Captain.
KIRK: I see. Magnification factor three, Mister Sulu.
(The viewscreen shows a sister ship to the Enterprise orbiting the
KIRK: Hold our position out here, Mister Sulu. Lieutenant, have Mister
Spock, Doctor McCoy, and Lieutenant Galloway report to the transporter
room. We'll board and investigate.
SPOCK: We're locked onto the Exeter's engineering
KIRK: Phasers on heavy stun. Energise.
(It's dark and quiet.)
(There's a red jacket draped across a console, with white crystals
scattered in and around it.)
KIRK: Just their uniforms left.
SPOCK: As if they were in them when
KIRK: Exactly. When what?
(McCoy scans the white crystals.)
KIRK: This is Captain Kirk of the USS Enterprise. Is anyone on board?
If there is, and you can hear me, please respond by intercom to the
engineering section. Is there anyone on board?
SPOCK [OC]: Spock here, Captain.
SPOCK: Lieutenant Galloway and I are checking out
the lower levels. There seems to be no one aboard. Only uniforms.
KIRK: What about the shuttlecraft?
GALLOWAY [OC]: Galloway on the hangar deck, sir. All four of the craft
are still here. If they left, they didn't leave that way.
KIRK: Doctor McCoy and I are going to the Bridge. Meet us there.
Captain's log. Aboard the USS Exeter commanded by
Ron Tracey, one of the most experienced captains in the Starfleet. What
could have happened to him and the over four hundred men and women who
were on this ship?
GALLOWAY: The helm was left on automatic, sir.
KIRK: Spock, play the last log tape. Maybe they had time to record what
happened to them.
SPOCK: Aye, sir.
MCCOY: Jim, the analysis of this so far is potassium thirty five
percent, carbon eighteen percent, phosphorous one point zero, calcium
one point five. Jim, the crew didn't leave. They're still here.
KIRK: What do you mean?
MCCOY: These white crystals. That's what's left of the human body when
you take the water away, which makes up ninety six percent of our
bodies. Without water, we're all just three or four pounds of
chemicals. Something crystallised them down to this.
SPOCK: I have their surgeon's log, Captain. Their last log entry,
Captain, on screen.
(A man in a blue shirt is struggling to try and sit up in the Captains
chair and dictate the log.)
DOCTOR [on viewscreen]: If you've come aboard this ship, you're dead
men. Don't go back to your own ship. You have one chance. Get down
there. Get down there fast. Captain Tracey is (screams and falls out of
KIRK: Prepare to beam down to the planet surface fast.
(He turns and looks down at the blue uniform lying on the floor where
they saw the doctor fall.)
(The four beam into a place with wooden
construction, fabric hangings on walls, and a beheading about to take
place in the main square. It takes three villagers to try and restrain
the big man they want to kill, and two to hold the woman who will
follow him. Then someone sees the new arrivals.)
VOICE: Oi! O1!
TRACEY: Put the axe away, Liyang.
KIRK: That's Ron Tracey. Ron.
TRACEY: I knew someone would come looking for us. I'm just sorry it had
to be you, Jim. I'm glad your arrival stopped this. No more of this,
Wu. Lock up the savages.
WU: They carry fire boxes.
TRACEY: I said lock up the savages. The prisoners are called Yangs.
Impossible even to communicate with. Hordes of them out there. They'll
attack anything that moves.
SPOCK: Interesting that the villagers know about phasers.
KIRK: You were left alone down here, Ron. What happened?
TRACEY: Our medi-scanners revealed this planet as perfectly harmless.
The villagers, the Kohms here, were friendly enough once they got over
the shock of my white skin. As you've seen, we resemble the Yangs, the
savages. My landing party transported back to the ship. I stayed down
here to arrange for the planet survey with the village elders. The next
thing I knew, the ship was calling me. The landing party had taken an
unknown disease back. My crew, Jim. My entire crew. Gone.
KIRK: Yes, I know. We saw it.
TRACEY: And I'm just as infected as they were. As you are. But I stayed
alive because I stayed down here. There's some natural immunisation
that protects everyone on the planet surface. I don't know what it is.
MCCOY:: Lucky we found that log. If we'd gone back to the Enterprise.
TRACEY: You'd be dying by now, along with the rest of the Enterprise
crew. You'll stay alive only as long as you stay here. None of us will
ever leave this planet.
Captain's log, supplemental. The Enterprise has
left the Exeter and moved into close planet orbit. Although it appears
the infection may strand us here the rest of our lives, I face an even
more difficult problem. A growing belief that Captain Tracey has been
interfering with the evolution of life on this planet. It seems
impossible. A star captain's most solemn oath is that he will give his
life, even his entire crew, rather than violate the Prime Directive.
(Some equipment has been beamed down to the surface
for medical tests.)
MCCOY: Tell the lab the final reading on our tissue is Y three X point
zero zero four. And I could use a second blood analyser unit.
UHURA: We'll beam it down shortly, Doctor.
UHURA [OC]: Enterprise out.
MCCOY: Our tissues definitely show a massive infection, Jim, but
something is immunising us down here, thank heavens, or we'd have been
dead hours ago.
KIRK: I don't think we're going to have time to isolate it, Bones.
MCCOY: The problem is, it could be anything Some spores or pollen in
the air, some chemical. Just finding it could take months, maybe even
years. And I've only got one lead. The infection resembles one
developed by Earth during their bacteriological warfare experiments in
the 1990s. Hard to believe we were once foolish enough to play around
(Spock bursts in, helping an injured Galloway who is clutching his
SPOCK: A Yang lance, Doctor.
KIRK: Are you all right?
SPOCK: Bruised only. We were approximately one hundred metres from the
village when five of the savages ambushed us. We managed to escape
KIRK: Spock, do you see any hope that these Yangs can be reasoned with?
A truce, a parley, a
GALLOWAY: No, Captain. They're too wild. They act almost insane.
SPOCK: Captain Tracey is being quite factual in several statements.
One, the Yangs are totally contemptuous of death. They seem incredibly
vicious. Two, he is also being factual in that the Yangs are massing
for an attack. There are signs of thousands of them in the foothills
beyond. However, he was less than truthful in one very important
KIRK: Phaser power packs.
SPOCK: Captain Tracey's reserve belt packs. Empty. Found among the
remains of several hundred Yang bodies.
KIRK: The fool.
SPOCK: A smaller attack on this village a week ago, driven off by
Captain Tracey with his phaser. I have found villagers who will
MCCOY: Now wait a minute. He lost his ship and his crew, and he found
himself the only thing standing between an entire village of peaceful
SPOCK: Regulations are quite harsh, but they're also quite clear,
Captain. If you do not act, you will be considered equally guilty.
MCCOY: Without a serum, we're trapped here with the villagers. Now why
destroy what's left of the man by arresting him?
SPOCK: I agree that formal charges have little meaning now. However,
you must at least confiscate his phaser.
KIRK: The fool. Starfleet should be made aware.
(Kirk gets out his communicator, and Tracey enters, phaser ready, and
backed up by villagers.)
TRACEY: I'll be sending the next message, Jim.
(The injured Galloway tries to reach for his own phaser, and Tracey
vapourises him. Then the villagers take everyones equipment.)
TRACEY: Enterprise, come in.
UHURA [OC]: Enterprise bridge. Lieutenant Uhura.
TRACEY: Captain Tracey of the Exeter.
UHURA: Yes, sir. Captain Kirk informed us earlier you had survived.
TRACEY: I'm afraid I have some bad news. Your captain and landing party
must have beamed down too late for full immunisation.
TRACEY [OC]: They've been found unconscious, but
I'm doing everything I can for them now.
SULU: Sir, this is Lieutenant Sulu in temporary command of the
SULU [OC]: Our whole medical staff will volunteer
to beam down
TRACEY: There's no point in risking more lives, Lieutenant. Since I've
acquired some immunity perhaps the others
(Wu hits him, hard.)
TRACEY: At their next word, kill him.
SULU [OC]: Repeat your message. Come in, landing party. Repeat your
TRACEY: I'm sorry, Lieutenant. Your captain's feverish, quite
SULU [OC]: I understand, sir. When he regains consciousness, assure him
that we have no problems here.
TRACEY: I'll contact you later, let you know of any future needs.
Landing party out.
(Later, Kirk is still lying on the floor, with his hands tied behind
him. He still manages to trip up the pacing guard, but then Tracey
TRACEY: That's enough of that, Captain. Leave us.
(The guard leaves.)
KIRK: Captain Ronald Tracey, as per Starfleet Command, regulation
seven, paragraph four
TRACEY: I must now consider myself under arrest, unless in the presence
of the most senior fellow officers presently available, I give
satisfactory answer to those charges which you now bring. Et cetera, et
cetera. Those were the first words duty required you to say to me, and
you said them. You're covered. Now, suppose we go on to the next
KIRK: Which is, why?
(Meanwhile he is quietly loosening the leather thongs around his
TRACEY: Good. Direct, succinct. Answer. No native to this planet has
ever had any trace of any kind of disease. How long would a man live if
all disease were erased, Jim? Wu. (Wu enters) Tell Captain Kirk your
WU: Age? I have seen forty two years of the red bird. My eldest brother
TRACEY: Their year of the red bird comes once every eleven years, which
he's seen forty two times. Multiply it. Wu is four hundred and sixty
two years old. His father is well over a thousand. Interested, Jim?
KIRK: McCoy could verify all that.
TRACEY: He will if you order it. We must have a doctor researching
this. Are you grasping all it means? This immunising agent here, once
we've found it, is a fountain of youth. Virtual immortality, or as much
as any man will ever want.
KIRK: For sale by
TRACEY: (to Wu) Out. (Wu leaves) By those who own the serum. McCoy will
eventually isolate it. Meanwhile, you inform your ship your situation's
impossible. Order them away. When we're ready, we'll bargain for a
whole fleet of ships to pick us up. And they'll do it.
KIRK: Yes, I suppose they would.
TRACEY: We've got to stay alive. Let the Yangs kill us and destroy what
we have to offer and we'll have committed a crime against all humanity.
I'd say that's slightly more important than the Prime Directive,
wouldn't you, Jim?
KIRK: It's a very interesting proposition. Let me think it over.
(He's got his hands free, so now the two Captains get to fight. Tracey
(The Yang man and woman are in one cell, Spock and
McCoy in another, when Tracey brings in Kirk at gunpoint.)
TRACEY: Take the doctor back to his workplace. The pointed-eared one
stays. And Wu, tell your men we'll be leaving soon. We'll be in ambush
for the Yangs. With many fire boxes this time. What do you think of
(Kirk moves towards the Yangs, but the male tries to attack him through
TRACEY: Animals who happen to look like us. You still think the Prime
Directive's for this planet?
KIRK: I don't think we have the right or the wisdom to interfere,
however a planet is evolving.
TRACEY: Well, if logic won't work, perhaps this will. Put him in there.
(The guards use spears to keep the Yangs from the door while they push
Kirk inside. Of course, there is a fight.)
(In the storeroom, McCoy notices that his guard has fallen asleep - the
snoring is a clue - and tries to reach for a possible weapon. But the
guard wakes up and stops him.)
(In the jail cell, the two Yangs are taking it in turns to keep Kirk
KIRK: Don't they ever rest?
SPOCK: Not that I have observed, Captain. Of course, should they wish
to do so, one could always rest while the other keeps you occupied.
KIRK: Thank you, Spock. (grabs the woman to use her as a shield, but
she bites his hand.) At least tell me why you want to kill me.
SPOCK: Good, Captain. Try to reason with them. Keep trying, Captain.
Their behaviour is highly illogical.
KIRK: No point in repeating that it's illogical, Spock. I'm quite aware
(The woman is finally within reach of Spock's neck pinch, and down she
goes. The male is astonished, and goes to protect her rather than keep
KIRK: Pity you can't teach me that.
SPOCK: I have tried, Captain.
(A young Kohm woman brings McCoy a plate of food.)
MCCOY: Oh, thank you. Thank you very much.
SPOCK: Captain, I have managed to loosen this grill
somewhat. If the mortar on yours is as old.
KIRK: I can't even get at it. He'd be on me in a moment. (the woman is
awake again) Keep talking, Spock. Don't let me doze off.
SPOCK: Captain Tracey mentioned there was once a considerable
civilisation here. The only reasonable explanation would be a war.
Nuclear devastation or a bacteriological holocaust.
KIRK: That's a very interesting theory. The yellow civilisation is
almost destroyed, the white civilisation is destroyed. Keep working on
the window if we're ever going to regain our freedom.
CLOUD: (The male Yang, with a very deep voice.) Freedom? Freedom?
SPOCK: Yes, I heard, Captain.
CLOUD: That is a worship word. Yang worship. You will not speak it.
KIRK: Well, well, well. It is our worship word, too.
CLOUD: You live with the Kohms.
KIRK: Am I not now a prisoner of the Kohms as you are?
(Kirk gets to the barred window and starts working on it. Cloud William
KIRK: Why did you not speak until now?
CLOUD: You spoke to Kohms. They are only for killing.
(They get a bar free, Kirk turns around.)
KIRK: Spock, we'll have you out in a minute.
(Cloud William knocks Kirk out with the iron bar, them rips the others
out of the window to make his escape.)
SPOCK: Captain? Captain? Captain, are you able to respond?
(Later, when Kirk has regained consciousness.)
KIRK: Spock. How long?
SPOCK: Seven hours and eight minutes, Captain.
KIRK: Seven hours and eight. Spock. Keys. (on a table) I'll have you
out in a minute.
(There is a scraping noise outside. When the guard
investigates, he is overpowered by Kirk and Spock.)
MCCOY: Good morning, Jim.
KIRK: Good morning.
SPOCK: We can contact the ship in a few moments, Captain, if I can
cross-circuit this unit.
KIRK: Good. Did you find out anything?
MCCOY: Yes. I'm convinced that once there was a frightening biological
war that existed here. The virus still exists. Then over the years,
nature built up these natural immunising agents in the food, the water,
and the soil.
SPOCK: War created an imbalance and nature counterbalanced it.
KIRK: There is a disease here, something that affected the Exeter
landing party and us.
MCCOY: That's right. These immunising agents take time, and that's the
real tragedy. Had the Exeter landing party stayed here just a few hours
longer, they never would have died.
KIRK: Then we can leave any time we want to. Tracey is of the opinion
these immunising agents can become a fountain of youth.
There are people here over a thousand years old, Bones.
MCCOY: Survival of the fittest, because their ancestors who survived
had to have a superior resistance. Then they built up these powerful
protective antibodies in the blood during the wars. Now, if you want to
destroy a civilisation or a whole world, your descendants might develop
a longer life, but I hardly think it's worth it.
KIRK: Then anything you develop here as a result of all this is
MCCOY: Who knows? It might eventually cure the common cold, but
lengthen lives? Poppycock. I can do more for you if you just eat right
and exercise regularly.
SPOCK: Ready, Captain. Quite crude. Voice communication will not be
possible, but we can signal the ship.
KIRK: All that bloodshed for nothing. That'll be sufficient, Mister
(Tracey appears at the door with his phaser, and shoots Spock.)
TRACEY: No messages. Kirk, the savage in the cell with you. Did you set
him free? You sent him, Kirk. You sent him to warn the tribes! The
Yangs must've been warned. They sacrificed hundreds just to draw us out
in the open. And then they came, and they came. We drained four of our
phasers, and they still came. We killed thousands and they still came.
MCCOY: He'll live, but I'll have to get him to better facilities than
TRACEY: Impossible! You can't carry the disease up to the ship with
MCCOY: He's fully immunised now. We all are.
KIRK: We can beam up at any time. Any of us.
TRACEY: You've isolated the serum?
KIRK: There's no serum! There are no miracles! There's no immortality
here! All this is for nothing!
TRACEY: Explain it to him, Doctor.
MCCOY: Leave medicine to medical men, Captain. You found no fountain of
youth here. People live longer here now because it's natural for them
TRACEY: Outside. Or I'll burn down both your friends now.
KIRK: Do what you can for him, Doctor.
KIRK: Where is everybody?
TRACEY: Dead or in hiding. Now let's see how eager you are to die. Call
your ship. I need your help, Kirk. They're going to attack the village.
My phaser's almost drained. We need new, fresh ones. You're not just
going to stand there and let them kill you, are you? If I put a weapon
in your hand you'll fight, won't you?
KIRK: We can beam up, Tracey. All of us.
TRACEY: I want five phasers. No, ten. With three extra power packs
KIRK: All right. (takes the communicator) Kirk to Enterprise.
UHURA: Captain, are you all right now?
KIRK: Yes, quite all right. I'd like ten phasers
beamed down with three extra power packs, please. Have you got that?
TRACEY: Say again.
KIRK: Enterprise, do you read me?
SULU: Captain, this is Sulu. We read you, but
surely you know that can't be done
SULU [OC]: Without verification.
KIRK: Not even if we're in danger, Mister Sulu?
SULU: Captain, we have volunteers standing by to
beam down. What is your situation?
(With Tracey's phaser almost up his nose.)
KIRK: The situation is not immediately dangerous. Have the volunteers
stand by. Kirk out.
TRACEY: You have a well-trained bridge crew, Captain. My compliments.
(Kirk disarms Tracey and they have another fight. Kirk runs through the
village. Tracey regains his phaser and uses up its power disintegrating
a large pot before he corners Kirk. Their final fight is stopped by
(Cloud William sits on a chair in the place of
honour. There are Romanesque statues of women around the walls, and
papers scattered on a table in front of him. The prisoners have their
hands tied behind them and are seated along a wall with plenty of
SPOCK: I'm weak, Captain, but not in difficulty.
MCCOY: He must have attention soon.
SPOCK: My need for attention is vital, Doctor, but our need for
departure is even more immediate.
KIRK: If my ancestors were forced out of the cities into the deserts,
SPOCK: Yes. I see, Captain. They would've learned to wear skins,
adopted stoic mannerisms, learned the bow and the lance.
KIRK: Living like the Indians, and finally even looking like the
American Indian. American. Yangs? Yanks? Spock, Yankees!
SPOCK: Kohms? Communists? The parallel is almost too close, Captain. It
would mean they fought the war your Earth avoided, and in this case,
the Asiatics won and took over this planet.
KIRK: But if it were true, all these generations of Yanks fighting to
regain their land.
MCCOY: You're a romantic, Jim.
(A drummer enters. Cloud William stands.)
CLOUD: That which is ours is ours again. It will never be taken from us
(A a tattered flag is brought in with great ceremony. Red and white
horizontal stripes, with a corner of white stars on blue background.
Kirk and the others stand.)
TRACEY: They can be handled, Jim. Together it'll be easy. I caution
you, gentlemen, don't fight me here. I'll win. Or at worst, I'll drag
you down with me.
CLOUD: I am Cloud William, chief. Also son of chief. Guardian of the
holies, speaker of the holy words, leader of warriors.
Many have died, but this is the last of the Kohm places. What is ours
is ours again.
(He goes over to the flag and puts his left hand over his heart.)
CLOUD: Aypledgli ianectu flaggen tupep kile for stahn
KIRK: And to the republic for which it stands, one nation under God,
indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.
ELDER: He spoke the holy word.
(Kirk is brought forward to the table.)
CLOUD: You know many of our high-worship words. How?
KIRK: In my land we have a tribe like you.
CLOUD: Where is your tribe?
KIRK: Up there. One of those points of light that you see at night.
ELDER: Why are you here? Were you cast out?
KIRK: You're confusing the stars with heaven.
TRACEY: He was cast out! Don't you recognise the Evil One? Who else
would trick you with your own sacred words? Let your God strike me dead
if I lie. But he won't, because I speak for him.
CLOUD: Yet you killed many Yangs.
TRACEY: You tried to kill me.
KIRK: We're not gods! We're not evil ones. We're men, like yourselves.
TRACEY: Would a man know your holy words? Would a man use them to trick
you? See his servant? His face, his eyes, his ears? Do the Yang legends
describe this servant of the evil one?
(Cloud William kisses a large Holy Bible then opens it at Haggai - with
a picture of a devil who looks very like Spock.)
KIRK: Are your faces alike? Can you tell from them which of you is good
and which of you is evil?
TRACEY: You command him. Everyone's seen that. You want more proof? He
has no heart.
MCCOY: His heart is different! The internal organs of a Vulcan are
CLOUD: Bring him.
(He puts his ear to where a human heart would be, but a Vulcan heart is
CLOUD: He has no heart.
ELDER: One of them lies.
CLOUD: But which? If we should kill the good, evil would be among us.
ELDER: (reaching for a document) There is a way.
CLOUD: Greatest of holies. Chiefs and sons of chiefs may speak the
words, but the Evil One's tongue would surely turn to fire. I will
begin. You shall finish. Ee'dplebnista norkohn forkohn perfectunun.
KIRK: Those words are familiar. Wait a moment.
TRACEY: He fears to speak them, for indeed his tongue would burn with
fire. Force him! Kill his servant unless he speaks, so you may see if
the words burn him.
(A knife is put to Spock's throat.)
KIRK: No, wait! There's a better way. Does not your sacred book promise
that good is stronger than evil?
SIRAH: (the woman who had been captured with Cloud William) Yes, it is
written. Good shall always destroy evil.
ELDER: It is written.
(The room is cleared. Tracey and Kirk have their left hands tied
together. Cloud William stabs a knife into the carpet at the other end
of the room.)
CLOUD: The fight is done when one is dead.
MCCOY: Spock, I've found that evil usually triumphs unless good is
very, very careful.
(The fight begins with an exchange of punches, then Tracey tries to
drag Kirk towards the knife.)
MCCOY: Spock, we've got to do something!
SPOCK: I am open to suggestions, Doctor.
(Kirk hooks his feet around a table leg to stop Tracey reaching the
knife. Spock directs his attention towards the woman.)
MCCOY: What are you doing?
SPOCK: I'm making a suggestion.
(The two protagonists have nearly reached the weapon. After a struggle,
Tracey gets it. The woman picks up a communicator, walks over to Spock,
then opens it. Kirk gets Tracey to drop the knife, and brings it down
across his throat.)
CLOUD: Kill him. It is written. Good must destroy evil.
(Instead, Kirk cuts their bonds just as Sulu and two security guards
SULU: Sir, we picked up communicator signals, but
KIRK: We'll discuss that later, Lieutenant. Leslie, free Doctor McCoy
and Mister Spock. Put Captain Tracey under arrest.
SULU: Aye, sir.
(Cloud William sinks to his knees.)
KIRK: Now, Cloud William.
CLOUD: You are a great God servant. We are your slaves.
KIRK; Get up. Face me.
CLOUD: When you would not say the holy words, of the Ee'd Plebnista, I
KIRK: I did not recognise those words, you said them so badly, Without
ELDER: No! No! Only the eyes of a chief may see the Ee'd Plebnista.
KIRK: This was not written for chiefs. (general consternation) Hear me!
Hear this! Among my people, we carry many such words as this from many
lands, many worlds. Many are equally good and are as well respected,
but wherever we have gone, no words have said this thing of importance
in quite this way. Look at these three words written larger than the
rest, with a special pride never written before or since. Tall words
proudly saying We the People. That which you call Ee'd Plebnista was
not written for the chiefs or the kings or the warriors or the rich and
powerful, but for all the people! Down the centuries, you have slurred
the meaning of the words, 'We, the people of the United States, in
order to form a more perfect union, establish justice, ensure domestic
tranquillity, provide for the common defence, promote the general
welfare, and secure the blessings of liberty to ourselves and our
posterity, do ordain and establish this constitution.' These words and
the words that follow were not written only for the Yangs, but for the
Kohms as well!
CLOUD: The Kohms?
KIRK: They must apply to everyone or they mean nothing! Do you
CLOUD: I do not fully understand, one named Kirk. But the holy words
will be obeyed. I swear it.
(Kirk leaves the Yangs to gaze at the old papers with new eyes.)
SPOCK: There's no question about his guilt, Captain, but does our
involvement here also constitute a violation of the Prime Directive?
KIRK: We merely showed them the meaning of what they were fighting for.
Liberty and freedom have to be more than just words.
Gentlemen, the fighting is over here. I suggest we leave them to
discover their history and their liberty.
(Kirk takes one last look at the flag before leaving.)