[ <-- | CREDITS | PROMO | PRESS | QUOTES | REVIEWS | SNAFUS | --> ]
Edited Length: 45:29
U.S. Airdate: October 18, 1992
Nielsen Rating/Rank: [13.2/1]
Chip Lucia: [Ambassador Ramid Ves Alkar]
Patti Yasutake: [Nurse Ogawa]
George D. Wallace: [Admiral]
Lucy Boryer: [Ensign Janeway]
Susan French: [Ramid Sev Maylor]
Rick Scarry: [Jarth]
Stephanie Erb: [Liva]
Co-Producer: Ronald D. Moore
Line Producer: Merri D. Howard
Producer: Peter Lauritson
Supervising Producer: David Livingston
Supervising Producer: Frank Abatemarco
Co-Executive Producer: Jeri Taylor
Executive Producer: Michael Piller
Written By: Frank Abatemarco
Directed By: Winrich Kolbe
Executive Producer: Rick Berman
Co-Producer: Wendy Neuss
Story Editor: Brannon Braga
Story Editor: René Echevarria
J.P. Hubbell: Ensign
Majel Barrett: Computer Voice
Currently, this feature is disabled... Sorry.
After the ship he originally traveled on is damaged in an attack, the respected Lumerian ambassador Ramid Ves Alkar comes on board to journey to a dispute in the Rekag-Cironi system. Also with him is a very aged woman, Sev Maylor, whom Alkar refers to as his mother, and who is by all appearances a mean- spirited, nasty-tempered woman.
As the Enterprise journeys to Cironia, Troi and Alkar hit it off rather nicely. Their friendship is hindered, however, by Maylor, who persistently keeps after Troi, threatening that she will always regret any attachment she forms with Alkar. Troi, disturbed, is distracted when Riker comes to work on the crew evaluations, but cheers up with his reassurance and begins to work. However, just then, Maylor dies-and strangely enough, Alkar seems almost completely undisturbed. He asks Troi, as a fellow empath, to assist him in the funeral ritual, a request she happily grants. However, at the end of the ritual, Alkar touches his (now glowing) funeral stone to Troi's dormant one, and Troi reacts with something akin to shock.
Some time later, Troi seems very edgy and concerned with her appearance. Beverly's examination of Maylor, meanwhile, turns up high levels of neurotransmitter residue and no trace of any disease. She asks Picard for permission to conduct an autopsy, but since there's no obvious threat to the ship and Alkar says it's against Lumerian custom, Picard refuses. Not long after that, a very distracted Troi goes to see Alkar and attempts to seduce him. When Alkar turns her down, saying that their relationship "just can't be that way," she angrily leaves and instead makes a pass at a random ensign in the turbolift with her. When Riker arrives not long after this to work again on the crew evaluations, the ensign hurriedly leaves and Troi badgers and snaps at Riker about perceived jealousy. Riker, realizing Troi is in no condition to work, attempts to make a graceful exit.
Later, with the Enterprise having arrived at Cironia, Picard and Alkar work with two other members of Alkar's delegation (Liva and Jarth). With tentative arrangements made to bring both sides to the negotiations, all seems well. However, Troi shows further signs of strain when she upbraids one of her patients for "whining" and "complaining" all the time, and Geordi and Beverly find evidence of dramatic deterioration in Maylor's condition in the three days she was on board. That evening, as Alkar relaxes in Ten-Forward, Troi (who now looks two decades older and is dressed as slinkily as possible) marches in and accuses Alkar of flirting with Liva. She insults everyone she can until marched out by Riker-and then, once Riker has brought her back to her quarters, she attempts to seduce him, then deeply scratches his face with her nails. Riker, decidedly uncomfortable, hastily leaves, as Troi, all but hysterically, begs him not to.
That hysteria becomes even more evident the next morning, when Alkar informs her he's going down to the surface. She reacts with jealous rage, accusing him of going to Liva and then attacking him in the transporter room with a knife when he attempts to beam down. The assault is unsuccessful, although Picard is grazed, and Alkar beams down as Troi and Picard are taken to sickbay. An analysis shows that Troi (now looking as aged as Maylor did) also has extraordinarily high levels of neurotransmitter activity. Now an autopsy is justified, it seems; and as Alkar is incommunicado in negotiations planetside, Picard approves it.
The autopsy shows two mysterious things: first, that Maylor was in many respects a scant thirty years old physically; and second, that her DNA shows she was most definitely not Alkar's mother. With Troi's condition deteriorating rapidly, Picard and Worf beam down to confront Alkar. He informs them that he has the ability to channel his unpleasant, distracting emotions into others, thus freeing himself to be the perfect diplomat. Unfortunately, the results are the rapid aging and death of his "receptacles." Although Alkar sees nothing wrong with this, Picard is completely appalled, and threatens to take Alkar back immediately. However, Alkar refuses, and Picard and Worf come under threat. They leave empty-handed, but immediately work to plan a way to bring him back.
In the end, Beverly temporarily "kills" Troi to get Alkar to break his link with her. Alkar, sensing that death, returns to the Enterprise to conduct a new "funeral ritual" with Liva. With time running out, Beverly revives Troi just as the ritual is concluding, and as she begins the neurotransmitter decontamination, Alkar suddenly collapses, then attacks Liva. Liva is beamed to safety, and Alkar, unable to cope with the dramatic overload of emotional feedback, ages rapidly and dies in mere moments. Troi, returned to normal in both appearance and attitude, returns to her duties aboard the Enterprise.
Technical design, graphic design, interactive features, HTML & CGI programming by Andrew Tong. || All materials Copyright © 1987-1995 by their respective authors. || Document created: January 28, 1995 || Last Modified: July 12, 1999