|Shran and Gral call a truce|
|Written by:||Manny Coto and Judith & Garfield Reeves-Stevens|
|Directed by:||David Livingston|
Archer tries to unify the Andorians, Tellarites and Vulcans in a plan to capture a marauder ship threatening to destabilize the region. (Part 2 of 3)
On Romulus, the drone-ship's pilot works on erratically maneuvering the vessel. When Nijil announces that Reed and Trip won't last long, Admiral Valdore informs him that the drone-ship is approaching its next target - Nijil's attempts to eliminate Trip and Reed will have to wait. Ordering the pilot to stabilize the ship, in preparation for its imminent attack, Nijil reports that he is activating the vessel's multispectral emitters - its holographic "skin". Valdore orders him to use a particular holographic design to annihilate its target.
On board the drone-ship, Trip asks Reed if he has recovered from the effects of the vessel's instability but the lieutenant answers that he is still dizzy. Trip comments that he can feel the ship's warp drive being deactivated.
Meanwhile, Nijil tells Valdore that the drone-ship is aiming at its next target, a Rigelian vessel. When he announces that the Rigelian crew are hailing the drone-ship, Valdore orders Nijil to respond.
On the bridge of the Romulan ship, Trip hears the vessel fire at an unknown adversary. Reed advises him to prepare for the target to defend itself, moments before the drone-ship comes under heavy fire.
Nijil notifies Valdore that the Rigelian ship is causing damage to the drone-ship, although Valdore instructs Nijil to allow the Rigelians sufficient time to transmit a distress call. Once Valdore realises the distress call has been sent, he directs Nijil to destroy the Rigelian vessel.
In the dark vacuum of space, the drone-ship swoops down on its prey, disguised as Enterprise.
- "Captain's starlog, supplemental. For now, the truce between the Andorians and Tellarites on Enterprise is holding. But Starfleet has informed me of a new diplomatic crisis."
Gathered around the situation table on the bridge of Enterprise, Captain Archer tells Ensign Travis Mayweather and Commander T'Pol that the Rigelian vessel was a heavily-armed scoutship with a crew of seventeen, none of whom survived. Archer shows his officers a visual record which was sent by the Rigelian ship - it shows Enterprise, firing at the vessel. The Rigelian Trade Commission is demanding compensation from Starfleet and Archer's arrest. The captain encourages Travis and T'Pol to search for the Romulan drone-ship. T'Pol tells him that she has discovered a method to detect the stealth vessel's warp signature, while Travis has designed a sensor grid which will extend Enterprise's range. Although the grid will require 128 vessels, it should prove to be an effective way to find the drone-ship.
In sickbay, Shran jokes that Phlox must be in love with Talas, as the doctor is treating her for more than a superficial wound, which he claimed was all she suffered. Although Talas was only grazed, the phase pistol that Naarg shot her with was set to kill. Talas is outraged at the Tellarite, and is worried about the severity of her wound. Shran tries to reassure her that she will be well again and that they will soon be back on their homeworld, Andoria. When Talas asks, Shran promises not to let her die unavenged. Phlox enters and apologetically asks Shran to leave. Before he does so, however, Archer enters and offers him a proposal. Shran doesn't listen to the captain's suggestion but answers that he will take part if the plan includes killing Tellarites. As he leaves, Archer realizes that uniting the Andorians, Tellarites, Vulcans and humans to provide the ships needed for the sensor grid will prove harder than he thought.
On Romulus, Senator Vrax complains to Valdore that the drone-ship is damaged, defenseless and adrift in enemy space, following its battle with the Rigelian scoutship. Valdore reminds him that the Romulan vessel has automated repair systems, but Vrax fears the consequences of the vessel's potential discovery. Valdore replies that because the drone-ships have no crew, the Romulans will never be blamed for their actions. Vrax's reply is that the prototype drone-ship, is simply a modified Romulan warbird, a fact that the Vulcans would discover if they scanned the ship's propulsion matrix. He orders Valdore to have the drone-ship return to Romulus, where he plans to tell the Romulan Senate that Valdore's test was a success. If the commander doesn't carry out Vrax's orders, Valdore will be held responsible for the loss of the prototype drone-ship. Uttering a Romulan farewell, Senator Vrax strides out of the command center with his Reman Commandos.
Aboard Enterprise, T'Pol enters Captain Archer's ready room. Archer tells her that he was just contacted by Admiral Gardner, who told him that Starfleet is sending every available starship to Enterprise's location. Even at their maximum velocity, most of the ships will arrive in three weeks. When T'Pol asks about Columbia, Archer tells her that the vessel is undergoing repairs at Earth's orbital drydock facility. T'Pol reports that Minister T'Pau only dispatched 23 vessels, as the Vulcan High Command has recently experienced a period of political upheaval and many Vulcan ships are currently not fully manned. T'Pol seems surprised when she notices Andorian and Tellarite fleet deployments on a monitor on the captain's desk but Archer explains that more ships will be necessary if the sensor grid is to be successful. T'Pol suggests that a command heirarchy be organised, due to the difficult relations between most of the members of the alliance. Archer comments that humans are the only species that are allies of the Andorians and Tellarites and that Enterprise could relay all orders to the armada of vessels. T'Pol isn't convinced, however, due to the fact that Humans, Andorians, Vulcans and Tellarites have never cooperated on a mutual endeavor before. Archer believes that if action against the Romulans isn't taken now, they may later return in greater force.
Aboard the drone-ship, Lieutenant Reed and Commander Tucker are inspecting the systems on the bridge. Trip tells Reed that he thinks he's found an environmental system, which he operates. Trip hears a rush of air as oxygen is released into the room. Malcolm wonders if the ship could be deserted - perhaps it's a prototype, which would explain the design of its bridge. The vessel may have been an existing ship, modified with the latest technological advancements available to its designers. If Reed is correct, and the ship is run by computers, all that he and Trip will have to do is to find a control which will deactivate the vessel's propulsion system. They set to work, searching for such a control.
On Enterprise, Shran and Ambassador Gral argue. When it seems as though their quarreling is about to erupt into physical violence, Archer refuses to intervene. He asks them to put aside their differences and try to cooperate. To do otherwise would be to allow the Romulans what they want to achieve - the destabilizing of relations between political powers in the Alpha and Beta Quadrants.
Aboard the drone-ship, Reed senses that the vessel has resumed warp speed, a perception that is substantiated when Trip remarks that he detected a power spike from one of the conduits on the bridge. When Reed asks if the engineer believes warp is controlled from there, Tucker answers that all of the ship's controls should connect to the bridge, if it was originally built for a crew. Trip asks Reed to observe the bridge consoles, which the armoury officer does. In cooperation, Reed and Tucker find the propulsion controls.
On Romulus, Nijil tells Valdore that he isn't certain what Reed and Trip are doing aboard the drone-ship, as the vessel's visual surveillance system is off-line. He exclaims that the drone-ship is no longer travelling at warp speed.
Meanwhile, Reed hears the Romulan vessel drop out of warp as he stands on the deck of the bridge. Modestly, Trip tells the lieutenant that he simply interrupted the power to the warp controls. He expects a backup system will come on-line soon. Reed draws his attention to a computer monitor which displays a map of their location. Together, they find their bearings. Reed believes that an area of the map could represent the power coupling for the entire warp control system but the area is separated from the bridge. Touching the section of the map that corresponds to the dividing wall, a door opens, leading to the area that Reed and Trip want to reach.
On Romulus, Nijil reports that one of the intruders have left the bridge of the drone-ship and is in the service junction, having located the main coupling for the warp matrix. The Romulan scientist tells Valdore that they have what they need to kill him in the service junction.
On board the drone-ship, Trip tells Reed to monitor a diagram as the engineer flips through some alien equipment as if they were circuit breakers. After Trip calls that he's cut the first one, Reed comments that a section of the map dimmed.
Meanwhile, Nijil reports to Valdore that the intruder they are monitoring is disabling the warp system and that the ship's automated self-repair systems will take more than a day to restore its warp capability, more time than Nijil and Valdore have. When the Romulan scientist announces that the vandalizing intruder is still in the service junction, Valdore orders Nijil to seal him in there.
Trip is about to look for a communications circuit when the door to the service junction closes. He contacts Malcolm using his communicator and asks if Reed touched anything that might explain why Trip is locked on the other side of the door. Reed tells Tucker that he didn't and that the hatch controls on his side aren't responding. On both sides of the door, the officers try to force the hatch open but stop when they hear the transmitted voice of Admiral Valdore. The Romulan reveals that he is in command of the vessel. When reactor coolant begins to fill the service junction, Trip lets Reed know, mentioning that the radiation level is at 100 roentgens and increasing. Valdore warns Tucker that if he doesn't reestablish the drone-ship's warp matrix, he will die within seven minutes.
On Enterprise, Shran hands Captain Archer an Andorian PADD. It displays the communication codes that the Andorian fleet will use in the sensor grid. Archer informs him that the Tellarites have also agreed to participate and that they, too, will require the communication codes. Distracted by the pictures of craft named Enterprise on Archer's ready room wall, Shran asks the captain if he has served on all those ships. Archer explains that although he wasn't even born when some of them were on active duty, every craft on the wall was called Enterprise. He tells Shran that one of the vessels sailed Earth's oceans almost four hundred years ago. Shran reveals that the ship he recently captained, the Kumari, was named after the first ice-cutter to circle Andoria. He speculates that perhaps future ships will be named after his and Archer's ships, if they achieve something historic together. Seeing no reason why Andorians and Humans can't become allies, he shakes Archer's hand.
On the drone-ship, Trip plans to deactivate the reactor which will stop the release of reactor coolant but Malcolm tells Tucker that he has thought of a better plan. The lieutenant tells Trip to stand back from the door. Valdore tries to convince them that their attempts to save Commander Tucker are futile - he'll be dead in three minutes. Reed shoots the door but the phase pistol has no effect. Trip deactivates the reactor but the backup sequencer comes on-line. While reactor coolant continues to flow into the service junction, Valdore attempts to persuade Reed and Trip to follow his instructions.
On the bridge of Enterprise, T'Pol reports that all 128 ships that are needed for the sensor grid have moved into position. Phlox contacts Archer and urgently asks him to come to sickbay.
Later, Shran storms into sickbay, where he finds Archer and Phlox. The doctor apologises to Shran and says he did everything that he could have. The Andorian is furious - his beloved, Talas, is dead. Archer convinces Shran that this is the wrong time for anger and, over her dead body, Shran mourns Talas.
Aboard the drone-ship, Trip notifies Reed that the radiation level is at 180 roentgens and continuing to increase and that his attempts to shut down the backup reactor sequencer have been unsuccessful. Reed tells Valdore that he will reestablish the warp matrix to save Commander Tucker but Trip orders him not to, before passing out. Reed sets to work to try and save Trip's life.
On Enterprise, Ambassador Gral indicates that all the Tellarite ships have joined the sensor grid. All that will be required now is patience, which Archer and Naarg agree will be hard for the Tellarites. Shran interrupts proceedings outside the conference room when two MACOs stop him from entering. Archer orders them to let him in, once Shran convinces the captain and the MACOs that his intentions are peaceful. Inside, he talks about Talas and shows Naarg a leather pouch full of her blood. He explains that when a guardsman dies far from Andoria, his, or her, companions carry a part of him, or her, back to the ice of their homeworld. In a furious rage, he empties Talas' blue blood onto Naarg. Archer hauls him off the Tellarite, where Shran warns that if Naarg doesn't face him in combat, the Andorian Imperial Guard will withdraw its ships from the sensor grid.
Trip is still unconscious aboard the drone-ship. Reed demands that Valdore stops the release of reactor coolant now that the lieutenant has reconnected the warp matrix. The Romulan opens the hatch to the service junction and Reed enters the area, as the hatch closes behind him. He reveals that he and Trip are in a better location than on the bridge, where he has set a phase pistol to overload.
Meanwhile, Valdore instructs Nijil to take the drone-ship to Romulus at warp speed.
Aboard the ship, Trip senses that the vessel has resumed warp propulsion and reminds Reed that he disobeyed a direct order. Reed sarcastically retorts that he's sorry for saving Trip's life and promises that he won't do it again. Grateful to still be alive, the engineer apologizes. Reed works on opening an access panel which leads away from the bridge and, aware that the Romulans may be monitoring his and Trip's conversation, indicates his plan to Trip. He and the engineer have only a minute before the phase pistol explodes, so they work togeher to escape the service junction.
When questioned about the access panel, Nijil responds that it opens onto a "superstructure" and leads away from any critical equipment. Valdore intends to deal with the humans when the drone-ship returns to Romulan space.
On board the vessel, Reed and Trip climb through the access panel. Trip believes they are a safe distance away from the overloading phase pistol, but Reed replies that he wired the weapon directly into the power conduit on the bridge. Valdore hears this and discovers Reed's plan, seconds before the phase pistol explodes, disrupting the Romulans' control of the drone-ship.
On board Enterprise, Hoshi and T'Pol tell Captain Archer about the Ushaan - a fight to the death using a weapon called a Ushaan-Tor, an ice-miners tool. Citing the fact that Andorians play with the Ushaan-Tor as children, Hoshi is certain that Naarg wouldn't stand a chance using one against Shran. Archer tells Hoshi and T'Pol that Ambassador Gral is refusing to let Naarg fight, although T'Pol remarks that the Andorians will consider that a further insult.
In his quarters, Shran sharpens the blade of his Ushaan-Tor. Archer enters and recalls that he and the Andorian spoke about an alliance between their species two hours ago. He finds it hard to believe that Shran would risk severing that alliance for personal vengeance. Shran explains that he has lost more than Talas - his ship and most of his crew. Now, he fears that he would lose his crew's loyalty and the respect of the Imperial Guard if he doesn't confront the Tellarite delegation. In Shran's opinion, Archer should be supporting him - the Andorian commander represents the humans at the Imperial Guard. Archer notifies him that, in accordance with the rules of the Ushaan, the captain will act as substitute for Naarg. Shran doesn't want to fight his friend but, after a long pause, he refuses to call off the match.
Aboard the drone-ship, Trip is surprised at the extent of the damage which Reed caused with only one phase pistol. They decide to head for the vessel's outer hull, where Commander Tucker may be able to link their communicators to the subspace transceivers on the hull, in order to contact Enterprise.
In the Romulan Command Center, Nijil reports that they have restored contact with the drone-ship and that the vessel's repair systems are starting to function again. Valdore asks to be notified when the ship has reestablished its self-destruct capability.
Aboard Enterprise, T'Pol enters Archer's quarters with the belief that the captain will lose the fight against Shran. She states that the Andorian has much more combat experience and won't yield to the captain. Archer is the only one who can be killed in the fight, since Starfleet insists on locating and destroying the Romulan drone-ship, which won't happen if an Andorian or a Tellarite is killed in the Ushaan. T'Pol reveals that she is worried about what might happen to Archer in the fight.
On the bridge, Hoshi tells Travis that she is studying the Code of the Ushaan. T'Pol hopes that Hoshi will be able to uncover a loophole in the code - some way to forfeit the match without insulting the Andorians. Travis offers to help her with the research.
In the briefing room, Hoshi and Travis discuss several possible loopholes, without success. Eventually, Travis suggests that perhaps they should be looking for a way for the captain to win, not a way out of the fight. Hoshi reminds him that the Andorians will withdraw their vessels if Shran dies. When Travis tells her that his father was challenged to a duel on Nobelia Prime for looking at the native tribal elders in the wrong way, Hoshi asks Mayweather how his father withdrew from the fight. Ignoring Hoshi's question, he searches for the combat rules.
Later, Hoshi, Gral and Phlox advise Archer on how to fight Shran. T'Pol calls the two combatants to take their positions where they briefly talk, each one certain that the other will lose. Soon, they begin their duel and, midway through the fight, Archer claims that he is trying to help Shran impress the Andorian soldiers. Eventually, the captain grips around Shran's neck and asks him to yield. The Andorian refuses to give up, so Archer swings the blade of his Ushaan-Tor towards Shran.
Later, Shran lies in sickbay with a lacerated antenna. He tells Archer that he deserved to be decapitated by the captain, and, walking to a monitor, reacts to the severity of his injury. He states that Andorian antennae can take up to nine months to regrow untreated, although Phlox answers that with electrical stimulation and cranial massage therapy, Shran's antenna will be fully regenerated in around half that time. When Archer recalls being told that Andorian antennae aren't vital, Shran retorts that his loss was a humiliating experience. But, as the captain honored Andorian custom and complied with the Code of the Ushaan, the Andorians will continue to assist with the sensor grid.
On the bridge, T'Pol reports that the drone-ship's power signature has been detected by four of the allied vessels. Enterprise is too far from the suspected ship to scan for bio-signs, so Archer orders an intercept course. Although even at maximum warp, the starship will still take 47 minutes to intercept the craft. Archer orders Hoshi to inform the allied fleet of Enterprise's situation and anxiously settles into his chair.
Meanwhile, the Romulans realize that Enterprise is closing on the drone-ship. Valdore commands Nijil to activate the vessel's holographic skin.
In space, the Romulan ship seems to be changing form, an illusion created by its multispectral emitters. On board, several lights fail, shortly before Trip explains that all the ship's systems that were damaged in the explosion are restoring power, draining the vessel's other systems. Power hasn't been restored yet to the drone-ship's warp matrix, although Trip suggests that they hurry if they wish to contact their starship.
As Enterprise nears its target, T'Pol announces that the starship is approaching visual range of the supposed drone-ship. When Archer directs T'Pol to display the vessel on the main viewscreen, it appears that the craft is a Vulcan starship. Checking the vessel's power signature, T'Pol clarifies that the ship is not of Vulcan design. Archer gives the order to raise tactical alert, charge weapons and prepare to engage the enemy.
In the Romulan Command Center, Nijil is annoyed that Enterprise will intercept the drone-ship before the vessel restores its warp matrix. Senator Vrax enters with his Reman bodyguards, startling Valdore. When Vrax disapproves of the commander's inability to stop intruders aboard the drone-ship from boarding and disabling the vessel, Valdore realizes that the senator must have a spy in the command center. Vrax reveals that he has come to witness Enterprise's destruction.
On the bridge of Enterprise, T'Pol identifies two human bio-signs on board the Romulan vessel. However, the Starfleet ship will still need to narrow its proximity to the drone-ship to engage a transporter lock on Tucker and Reed. Archer attempts to hail his officers and is relieved when they eventually answer.
Soon, Enterprise and the drone-ship engage in combat. The Romulan craft is causing severe damage to the Starfleet vessel when Enterprise finally manages to eliminate the drone-ship's disguise.
Aboard the Romulan craft, Reed wonders why the crew of Enterprise are firing at the drone-ship when they know that he and Trip are aboard, although Tucker assumes that they are only aiming at the drone-ship's weapon systems. Contacting Enterprise, the engineer asks Archer if the starship is able to establish a transporter lock on his and Malcolm's positions. The captain replies negatively and instructs them to move closer to the drone-ship's hull.
Meanwhile, Nijil reports that the Romulan ship has lost its holographic ability and will reestablish its warp capacity in two minutes. He calls that more enemy vessels are nearing the drone-ship and worries that the ship will lose its self-repair systems again. Vrax is certain, however, that the ship will escape the allied fleet.
As Enterprise continues to fight the enemy vessel, Trip shouts that he and Reed have reached the vessel's hull.
T'Pol still fails to get a transporter lock on Trip and Reed, as the Romulan ship's maneuvers are too erratic. The drone-ship targets Enterprise's warp core so Archer orders T'Pol to take the weapons off-line and boost power to the hull plating. Telling Travis to turn the ship around, he contacts Trip and Reed and demands that they leave the drone-ship.
Meanwhile, Vrax sees that the Starfleet vessel doesn't have weapons - a vulnerability which the Romulans can take advantage of.
Trip and Reed jump out of the drone-ship and hurtle through space at an incredible rate of acceleration.
Just when T'Pol is about to engage a transporter lock on them, Enterprise is hit again, this time taking damage to its sensor assembly - she still can't get a lock.
The Romulans discover six more enemy vessels heading toward the drone-ship, which will be able to engage warp in twenty seconds.
When Hoshi reports their arrival, Archer tells her to ask the allied vessels to hold their fire - he doesn't want his officers to be injuried.
Meanwhile, Trip and Reed swim through space, watching as the allied ships approach and the drone-ship, which has regained its warp capacity, darts past them.
On Romulus, Vrax orders the Pilot, wearing the synaptic interface helmet which covers most of his features, to withdraw the drone-ship from the battle.
In the vacuum of space, the six allied ships race after the Romulan craft. Alone, Reed pessimistically believes that he and Tucker are doomed to spend the rest of eternity spinning endlessly through space when, above their heads, Enterprise appears and beams them aboard.
Later, Trip and Reed remove their environmental suits, which they have been wearing for three days. Trip thanks Reed for saving his life aboard the drone-ship but says that he is putting the lieutenant on report. Eventually though, Reed determines that Trip is only joking.
In the briefing room, Archer notifies T'Pol, Shran and Gral that the drone-ship escaped. He also tells them that the crew of a destroyed Tellarite vessel was rescued by an Andorian warship. Shran and Gral agree that the drone-ship is a menace to both their species and sit down to discuss a potential alliance between Andoria and Tellar.
Meanwhile, Nijil states that the drone-ship has returned to Romulan space. Valdore orders the Pilot to be disconnected from the equipment that surrounds him. As Romulan officers remove the helmet from his head, they reveal that the Pilot is an albino Andorian with white skin and red eyes.
TO BE CONTINUED...
In the original script, Senator Vrax's spy in the Romulan Command Center was Nijil and the episode ended with Vrax and Valdore plotting against Captain Archer. When Valdore made a reference to the Romulan drone-ship, he called it the Raptor, although this name is not in any of the filmed episodes in which the ship appears.
This episode was the third to be written by Judith & Garfield Reeves-Stevens, having previously written "The Forge" and "Observer Effect", although this time, they share their writers credit with Manny Coto.
Following their appearance in "Star Trek: Nemesis", United featured the second appearance of the Remans in Star Trek.
This episode was the first to air following the announcement by UPN that Star Trek: Enterprise was due to be cancelled after its fourth season.
United was the first episode to feature a Rigelian vessel and the first to feature the appearances of the founding members of the Federation - humans, Vulcans, Andorians and Tellarites - together since the original series episodes "Journey to Babel" and "Whom Gods Destroy".
"The Vulcans have a saying; 'One man can summon the future.'
What happens if that man throws away his life, before his time?"
"Why wait until Babel?" - Archer
Links and References
- Jeffrey Combs as Shran
- Lee Arenberg as Gral
- Brian Thompson as Valdore
- J. Michael Flynn as Nijil
- Molly Brink as Talas
- Kevin Brief as Naarg
- Geno Silva as Senator Vrax
- Scott Rinker as Gareb
Alliance (2154); Andoria; Andorians; Andorian Imperial Guard; Andorian Right of Substitution; Babel; Babel Conference; Columbia; distress call; Gardner, Admrial; Kumari (warship); Kumari (ice cutter); Nobelia Prime; phase pistol; radiation; Remans; Rigelians; Rigelian scoutship; Rigelian Trade Commission; Romulans; Romulan drone-ship; Romulan Senate; roentgen; targ; Tellarites; T'Pau; ushaan; ushaan-tor; Vulcan High Command; Wall of Heroes; warp matrix.
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