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Stardate: not given
Edited Length: 45:00
U.S. Airdate: February 13, 1994
Nielsen Rating/Rank: [11.5/4]
Michael Keenan: [Maturin]
Shay Duffin: [Ned Quint]
Duncan Regehr: "Ronin"
Consulting Producer: Peter Lauritson
Co-Producer: Wendy Neuss
Co-Producer: Brannon Braga
Producer: Ronald D. Moore
Line Producer: Merri D. Howard
Supervising Producer: David Livingston
Executive Producer: Jeri Taylor
Executive Producer: Michael Piller
Teleplay By: Brannon Braga
Television Story By: Jeri Taylor
Directed By: Jonathan Frakes
Executive Producer: Rick Berman
Executive Story Editor: René Echevarria
Story Editor: Naren Shankar
Ellen Albertini Dow: Felisa
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The Enterprise is at a colony on Caldos Four, for the funeral of Beverly Crusher's grandmother, Felisa Howard. At the funeral, Bev is surprised to see a youngish-looking man place a flower on her grave. She discusses the personal nature of the gesture with Deanna, and then adjourns back to her grandmother's home. Meanwhile, Picard agrees to Governor Maturin's request to stick around and help with the weather control units, in exchange for a tour of the colony, which has managed to recreate the feel of Scotland very successfully.
At the house, Beverly goes through "Nana's" possessions, quickly finding a lit candle meant to symbolize "the enduring Howard spirit". Deanna leaves after offering some condolences, and Bev broods, eventually finding some journals of her grandmother's and taking them upstairs to read. This is interrupted, however, when Ned Quint, a friend of Felisa's, comes in the house and blows out the candle - and ordering Bev in no uncertain terms never to light it again. She throws him out, and he disclaims all responsibility for whatever future she brings on herself.
That evening, after Beverly has read her grandmother's repeated reference to her lover "Ronin", a man in his mid-thirties that Bev knew nothing about, the candle (now in her quarters) sputters briefly, and the sheets around Beverly begin to move. She responds as if being caresses, then hears a voice calling her name. She wakes, shocked. She talks to Deanna about the incident (or rather, "the dream", as that is what she believes it to be), and wonders if the dreams will continue.
At the cemetery later, Bev finds Quint and apologizes to him for her behavior the previous day. He accepts the apology, but says he'll never again enter the Howard home, and that she shouldn't either - the house, he says, is haunted by a ghost who lives in the candle, and his inability to enter it right now is making him cause the storms now forming over the colony. Beverly is skeptical - after all, the malfunctioning weather grid is causing the storms - but he is adamant that the spirit is responsible. As the storm begins to pour down, Beverly returns to the house - but when she enters, she finds flowers strewn everywhere...
The door closes behind her, and Beverly wanders the house, seeming very unnerved. Eventually, Ronin speaks to her invisibly, even taking control of her body. He tells her that he's a spirit, born in 17th-century Scotland, and that he has been with Howard women for centuries. Bev doesn't understand, but Ronin proves irresistible. Later, Deanna drops by Bev's quarters on the Enterprise and talks to her about her new-found "friend", urging her not to mistake shared grief for love, but Bev assures her that at the moment, it's not love - "I'm just intrigued."
The situation gets stranger, both on the Enterprise and on the planet. Data and Geordi go down to the planet to find a way to stop the power transfer they had earlier started to stabilize the weather system, but instead find Quint trying desperately to disconnect primary power to the system. He tells them to keep back, saying that a mysterious "he" is trying to kill them all - but suddenly, sparks fly from the console he is near, and Quint falls to the ground, dead.
Data and Geordi assume a plasma discharge killed him, but Bev disagrees, saying that she's found traces of anaphasic energy in his body. She sends the body to the Enterprise for testing, and returns to the house to confront Ronin. Ronin admits causing Quint's death, but says there are more important things to talk about. He materializes, physically, and tells her that he needs her help: he needs her to light the candle, which he requires to stay strong. He will travel up the power beam from the Enterprise and join her on the ship. Bev quickly returns to the ship and lights the candle, and in short order Ronin is there, promising her that they'll be together always, "and you will feel love as you never felt it before." He turns himself to mist and envelops her, and she responds with abandon.
Shortly thereafter, Picard rushes into the transporter room to find Beverly, having resigned her commission, ready to beam down to the planet for good! He tries to talk her out of it, but she is adamant, and leaves. After he talks to Deanna about Ronin's possible influence, he decides to go down and meet Ronin for himself, as Geordi and Data go down to the planet to search for another anaphasic signature, which is quickly shown to be in the cemetery, very near Felisa Howard's grave.
Picard comes to the Howard home, and after knocking without an answer, enters to find Beverly in the throes of passion, having just merged with Ronin. She collects herself and tries to get Picard to leave, telling him "jealousy doesn't suit you, Jean-Luc." Picard, however, is adamant, telling her that this situation is simply not the Beverly he knows, and asking why she seems to be the only one who has ever seen Ronin? Ronin then appears, walking down the stairs, and tells Picard to leave. He, however, will not, instead asking hard questions about Ronin's origins and challenging his claim to be a colonist.
After Picard gives Geordi and Data permission to exhume Felisa's body, Ronin disappears in anger. Picard tries to get Beverly to come with him, but is shocked by anaphasic energy and falls to the ground in pain. Beverly, forced to choose, stays with Picard to help him as Ronin leaves to stop Data and Geordi. She stabilizes Picard's condition, then goes to the cemetery to stop Ronin. She arrives in time to see him take over Felisa's body and shock both Geordi and Data into unconsciousness, and screams at him to stop what he is doing. She accuses him of being an "anaphasic lifeform", using her body and those of Howard women through the centuries to maintain his stability. He grants that, but insists that he loved them all. He tells her to lay down the candle, which she does - but she then phasers it, leaving Ronin nowhere to go. With the only option being to hide in Beverly herself, Ronin leaps for her, but Bev phasers him as well, dispersing his energy forever. Everyone recovers, but Beverly tells Deanna later that she feels some sense of disappointment. Having read her grandmother's journals, she now knows that "whatever else he may have done ... he made her very happy."
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