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Mariner, Boimler, Tendi, and Rutherford are caught off guard when certain aliens force them to testify about a series of apparently unrelated events.



On K'Tuevon Prime, Ensigns Beckett Mariner, Brad Boimler, D'Vana Tendi, and Sam Rutherford are all thrown into what looks like a prison cell, though none of them have any clue why they are there. Boimler panics that he will miss his pottery class. As Boimler calls out for someone to give them more information about what's going on, Tendi wonders if her replication of ice maybe got them in trouble. Boimler tells them that he saw the senior staff get taken into another room, and Mariner tries to assure them that their current cell is much better than what a Klingon prison cell is like, and that whatever is going on is likely no big deal. As she says this, however, they begin to lift into another room.

Act One[]

They are all brought into a dark room, which is full of Primes who are chanting and playing drums as they're brought in. Rutherford spots the senior staff suspended in a beam of light, and Mariner suspects them of being put on trial. As they speak, Clar, one of the Primes, bangs a gavel and announces to the room that Mariner, Boimler, Tendi, and Rutherford have been brought in to offer testimonials about the senior staff of the USS Cerritos. The ensigns all question just what it is they're testifying about, but Clar tells them that they are only allowed into speak into the Horn of Candor, and that one can only speak the truth into the horn. Clar calls Mariner to testify, and he states that the Cerritos logs indicate that she was on the bridge when the Cerritos was in contact with the Clicket ship Tweerk on stardate 57818.4, and demands her to tell the room of the events of that day. Mariner comes forward and starts her testimony.

In the repair bay of the Cerritos, Mariner, Boimler, Tendi, and Rutherford are working on their personal shuttlecraft project. While they work, Mariner and Boimler are having a debate about who is a bigger badass between Roga Danar and Khan Noonien Singh, and Tendi briefly excuses herself to use the restroom, but comes back to tell them that the ship is actually on red alert. They wonder why they haven't heard an alarm, and Rutherford says that he messed with the red alert speakers so that it would be louder in the repair bay. Realizing he did something wrong, the ensigns all run to the door to see that the ship is indeed at red alert, and Boimler worries they will get in trouble. As they split up to head for their stations, Mariner and Boimler rush to the turbolift to report to their duty stations for that day on the bridge. Boimler is still worried, and assures himself that if they just tell Captain Carol Freeman the truth about why they're late, she'd understand, but Mariner is unwilling to run the risk of getting Rutherford fired, and tells him just fake it and follow her lead. Boimler is unsure they can fake it on the bridge, but Mariner says that if they don't, they'll all end up getting kicked off the ship and transferred to Earth.

USS Cerritos and an alien vessel

The Cerritos facing off a Clicket vessel

Freeman is beamed onto the bridge, holding a map of the Romulan Neutral Zone, and flustered that the Clickets simply attacked her for thanking them. The Clickets angrily hail the Cerritos, accusing them of betraying them after they gave them the map. Freeman tries to assure the Clicket captain that this is all just a misunderstanding, as Mariner and Boimler sneak onto the bridge to their positions. Boimler wonders who the Clicket is as he and Freeman continue to argue, but Mariner simply tells him to roll with it. Freeman tries to assure no offense was meant, but the Clicket demands the map back, before cutting the transmission. Freeman asks Mariner what she thinks, and Mariner simply replies that she believes Freeman knows exactly how to handle the situation. Freeman agrees and asks Boimler for options. Boimler is nervous as he tries to act like he knows what's going on, and he says that he has faith in what Freeman wants to do. Freeman isn't looking for flattery and encourages him to give a solution, to which he nervously suggests evasive maneuvers, much to the surprise of the bridge crew. Boimler tries to play it off like he was kidding and suggests using the impulse drive to Crazy Ivan, but Commander Jack Ransom simply tells him that he's embarrassing himself. Freeman then tells Mariner to send the Clickets a message, which she interprets as firing a warning shot with the phasers, much to the shock of the bridge crew. Freeman angrily says she meant to invite them to dinner, and the Clickets angrily fire back on the Cerritos.

Clar asks what Mariner is talking about as she testifies, doubting that Mariner wouldn't know what is happening on her own ship at all times. Mariner isn't proud of this, but admits that she isn't always aware of what's going on. Clar demands her to tell them about the map, apparently being the most important detail, but she doesn't recall that there was a map at all, pointing out that starships don't use maps when they have stellar cartography. Clar holds her in contempt and has the beam hold her over a tank of eels, but before she can be dropped in, Boimler confirms Mariner's story. Boimler quietly wonders why Clar cares so much about the map, to which Tendi nervously denies having any idea about. Convinced that Mariner was confused by what was going on, Clar calls Rutherford to the stand. Rutherford is confident, as his cybernetic implant gives him a perfect memory, and Clar demands him to tell of events that happened on stardate 57791.1. Rutherford seems unsure about this, but Clar is insistent on this date.

Romulan Bird-of-Prey, 2380

23rd century Romulan Bird-of-Prey

Rutherford is rotating the EPS capacitors so they don't overheat, when he is approached by Lieutenant Shaxs and Lieutenant Commander Andy Billups. Shaxs asks if his implant has Romulan flight manuals and repair information, and Rutherford says that it would after an update. Billups orders him to update the implant, despite Rutherford's protest, preferring to update it when he sleeps. They once more demand him to do it immediately, and he initiates the update. They begin to brief him on a plan, before he blacks out, not hearing their plan. When he wakes up again, he's in front of two unconscious and nearly naked Vulcans. Shaxs commends him for knocking them out with the Vulcan neck pinch, making Rutherford realize his implant took over his motor functions as he does not know how to do that. Billups flies them over a museum, and they're all about to initiate a HALO jump as Rutherford tries to understand what's going on, but Shaxs tells him that he will once they're in the museum, who then grabs and pushes him out of the ship and he blacks out once again in midair. He wakes up in the museum, underneath a Romulan Bird-of-Prey on display, and Shaxs is making an attempt to reach a panel on the underside to get it working, telling Rutherford not to draw any attention to them. As he says this, a Vulcan Starfleet guard sees Rutherford, and Shaxs tells Rutherford to distract the guard with a fan dance. Rutherford tries to do the dance, but seemingly does the incorrect dance before blacking out again as the guard suspiciously aims his weapon. He wakes up in space, standing on the cloaked Bird-of-Prey, and sees Billups suffering nitrogen intoxication, as his environmental suit is critically low on oxygen. Shaxs urges them to get on the nearby shuttle. Rutherford grabs Billups and struggles to get them to the ship, having trouble navigating around the cloaked protrusions of the ship's hull. After he gets them on board, he blacks out for an update on Klingon fonts and collapses onto the ship's controls, sending the ship to warp. He wakes up on a desert planet that the shuttle has crashed on, in the middle of a Gorn wedding ceremony, and immediately blacks out as the Gorn attack him. He is pleased with this as he assumes the implant will get him out of the situation by the time he regains consciousness, but when he wakes up, he's still being attacked at the wedding.

Rutherford being attacked by Gorn

Rutherford being attacked by Gorn

Clar interrupts, asking why Rutherford is talking about a Gorn wedding, and Rutherford tells him that is all he remembers from that stardate. Clar asks about details surrounding the Bird-of-Prey, but Rutherford can't remember. Boimler wonders why they were stealing a Bird-of-Prey in the first place, at which Tendi once again nervously states that she wouldn't know anything about such things. Clar has Rutherford held over the Tank of Contempt, but Tendi defends Rutherford, and Clar suspects Tendi can tell them more than the others are telling him, much to her nervousness.

Act Two[]

Tendi gets excited about offering her testimonial, and Clar asks if she and Ransom have ever been in the Neutral Zone. Tendi says she can't tell him that, much to the annoyance of Clar, and he's about to put her in the Tank of Contempt, when Boimler tells Tendi just to tell Clar what he wants. Tendi reluctantly agrees, but says that it was a classified mission, and will have to redact some details.

Tendi approaches Mariner in the lower decks crew quarters, happy that she was assigned to clean up the conference rooms. Mariner doesn't get her excitement, but Tendi just ignores her thoughts on the matter, and leaves with an anti-grav sled she's loaded with cleaning supplies. Once out of earshot, Mariner groans about how she never gets to clean the conference room.

Tendi is working on conference room chairs, cleaning T'Ana's fur off the backs, when Ransom enters with three other officers, dressed in tactical stealth uniforms. (Clar interrupts Tendi's testimonial, angry that she is redacting too many details, but allows her to continue.) Ransom sees Tendi and mistakes her for "The Cleaner" in his upcoming mission. Tendi doesn't realize he's referring her to an entirely different cleaner, as opposed to her simply cleaning the conference room, and she joins them for their mission brief. As Ransom begins the brief, Tendi can't help but feel excited that she's being recognized for her work, before realizing that in her excitement, she's missed his entire brief. Ransom pulls out the map of the Romulan Neutral Zone to Tendi's dismayed surprise, notes the location of a package they need to retrieve, and that if they have trouble, Tendi will extract them. Ransom and the others start cheering and psyching themselves up, and Tendi realizes she's in over her head as they throw her a phaser rifle.

Romulan Bird-of-Prey bridge, special ops

Tendi aboard the Romulan Bird-of-Prey with Ransom

On the cloaked Bird-of-Prey, Tendi is visibly nervous about her predicament, and is about to tell them about the misunderstanding, when the Andorian lieutenant tells everyone to be quiet, as a Romulan D'deridex-class warbird looms overhead, scanning the area. They lower their guard as the warbird passes by, but before Tendi can explain herself, the Andorian warns them that the warbird is scanning again. A moment passes as they lower their guard, but once more, before Tendi can explain, the Andorian warns them that they're being scanned yet again. Tendi tries again, but the Andorian warns them that they're being scanned again, this time, by two D'deridex warbirds. The Andorian says they've stopped, before immediately screaming that they're being scanned again by three D'deridex warbirds. At first he thinks he was wrong however, but realizes he wasn't wrong and are being scanned yet again by four D'deridex warbirds. By this time, the annoyed Tendi has stopped trying to even start speaking up.

Tendi fighting Romulans

Tendi fighting the Romulans

Reaching Romulus, the Bird-of-Prey decloaks, and with Ransom and Tendi changed into tactical stealth uniforms, they all get on the transporter. Tendi tries once again to explain that she shouldn't actually be with the team, but is brushed aside by Ransom, thinking that she wants to boast about how impressive it is for her to be assigned to the mission despite her young age. They beam down to the surface on the night side, and Ransom orders comm-silence. They begin their infiltration of a Romulan facility, and Tendi grabs and knocks out two guards while apologizing to them, impressing the team. Ransom orders Tendi to guard an entrance ("Stay here. Cover our six.") as he and the others enter a room to retrieve the package. A moment later, the team runs out of the room with the package, and Ransom tells Tendi to do "her thing". Unsure what "her thing" is, Tendi faces a group of charging armed Romulans and knocks them all out with martial arts, dumbfounding the team, who were only expecting her to beam them out.

Successful in retrieving the package, Ransom commends the away team back in the Cerritos' conference room, saying there was no indication that the Romulan High Council detected their presence. When the others leave, Ransom commends Tendi, saying that while they'll have to deny their mission to Romulus ever happened, Tendi was incredible at what she did. Tendi is happy to be recognized for her contribution, and after Ransom leaves, resumes her cleanup of the conference room. The package is left in the room, leaning against the wall.

Clar finds her account of details unbelievable, and is unwilling to believe that Tendi single-handedly took out multiple armed Romulan guards. Tendi just agrees with a wink in plausible deniability. Annoyed, Clar grabs Tendi by the beam, and drops her, Mariner, and Rutherford into the Tank of Contempt, and igniting some burners beneath the tank. Distressed, Mariner can't help wondering why there are both burners and eels used at the same time to execute people, as having one method makes the other redundant.

Act Three[]

As the ensigns tread the Tank of Contempt with the eels, Clar demands they tell him about the contents of the package they retrieved. Tendi says she doesn't know, and worries that Clar is hurting the eels. Clar approaches Boimler, and says that everything could be over if they just tell him what the bridge crew did. Boimler says that they can't tell him because they don't know what they did. Clar has Mariner, Tendi, and Rutherford raised from the tank, and Boimler explains that since they work in the lower decks, they very rarely ever know what is going on with the bridge crew. Clar doesn't believe him, saying that since they're all in Starfleet, everyone on the ship must be briefed of their missions. Boimler says that the senior staff don't always have time to brief everyone, and notes that even they don't always know what's going on in their own ship. Clar accuses him of lying, but Boimler just assures him that they mess up all the time: he knows this because he keeps up-to-date with all of their log reports.

Q aboard the Cerritos

Q aboard the Cerritos

USS Alhambra bridge

Dr. T'Ana among strangers

He notes that whenever Q shows up on the Cerritos, the bridge crew never knows exactly what his bizarre test for them is, or how to go about participating in it. He also notes that Ransom often participates in dates with aliens that he doesn't do any research about, which can put his life in jeopardy from time to time. Boimler also references a moment in which Dr. T'Ana accidentally boarded the USS Alhambra while at spacedock, and mistook the entire ship for a crew that operates the Cerritos in a parallel universe.

Clar seems distressed by this testimonial, and says that he needs Boimler to tell him that his bridge crew are infallible heroes. Boimler says that they aren't, and that's okay, and that as explorers, not everyone will know about everything on the ship. He notes that Picard didn't know about the Borg when he first encountered them, or that Kirk didn't know about a giant Spock on Phylos, or that Dr. Crusher didn't know about the entity that was in her grandmother's lamp that she had intimate relations with. He thinks Clar is simply trying to get them to say something to incriminate their bridge crew, despite having no evidence that they committed a crime, and accuses Clar of holding a drumhead trial.

Clar is confused when he finally realizes that the ensigns all think that the whole proceeding they're participating in is a trial. Clar has the lights turned on, and they see that they are not in a courtroom as they suspected, but are instead in a highly decorated party room. Clar is saying that they aren't holding the bridge crew on trial, they are actually celebrating their rescue of Clar himself, who was kidnapped a year ago by the Romulans, and was, himself, the contents of the package that was retrieved by the Cerritos. The party was to celebrate his successful rescue, and to etch their success onto their history stone. Mariner doubts everything and says that his overuse of court terms and the fact that he suspended the bridge crew in a beam of light made it very much seem like it was a trial. Clar says that the beam is the Beam of Celebration. Rutherford backs Mariner up, saying that the chanting and the gavel, and that they were lifted into what seemed like a creepy courtroom, made it seem more like a trial than a party. Clar tells them that the room is one of the nicest event silos on the planet, and that it was even host to his wedding. Mariner asks who the judge is, that has said nothing, and has been eyeing the entire proceeding, but the person in question simply says that he doesn't know who any of them are, and that he was only present because he is going to be hosting his daughter's 100th birthday in the room soon. At this moment, an employee enters the room and informs Clar that his time in the room is over. Clar protests that they weren't able to do any of the etching into the history stone as he'd hoped, but the employee says that he only paid for 22 minutes, and that other people are waiting to use the room. Freeman and the bridge crew are lowered as Mariner and Clar continue to argue. Freeman leads Mariner away while she continues asking why there were so many bizarre events in this party, all while Clar complains that she ruined his party.

On the Cerritos, Freeman confronts the ensigns, saying that their testimonies almost got themselves killed, but admires that they stood up for the ideals of Starfleet, despite believing they were in life-threatening jeopardy. She notes that being worth some commendation, and promises that in the future, they will do what they can to keep the bridge crew more informed about what's happening on the ship. The four ensigns immediately begin asking questions about everything that just happened, overwhelming the senior staff, and Freeman dismisses them, saying that the details are classified.

As they leave, Mariner simply says how she's fine being left in the dark, since knowing more things means more work. Boimler tries to play it off like he always knew it was a party, and Mariner teases him, asking why he started crying. As they talk, Q appears in front of them and challenges them to a duel, but the ensigns are not in the mood for any of his antics, and Mariner tells him to go bother Picard. Q just follows them, saying Picard is no fun with his constant quoting of William Shakespeare, and wine-making.

Memorable quotes[]

"You will speak only into the Horn of Candor! With this horn, one of our most sacred horns, you must only speak the truth!"
"Happy to be here."

- Clar and Sam Rutherford

"Roga Danar? Are you nuts? I said 'Who's the all time biggest badass?' Not 'Who's a dude nobody's heard about?'"
"Everyone knows Roga Danar."
"No, they don't."
"He totally outsmarted Picard, and he has amazing hair."
"What about Khan, right? Khan was a genetically-engineered super villain! Dude was a space seed!"

- Beckett Mariner and Bradward Boimler, arguing over who is the ultimate bad guy

"Come on. No wrong answers."
"Well, okay. We could do uh evasive maneuver eighty... eight?"
"Is he *bleep* serious?"

- Carol Freeman, Boimler, and T'Ana, over what course of action to take

"What the hell are you doing?!"
"You said 'Send them a message.' That means phasers!"
"It means to send them a message to invite them to dinner!"
"No it doesn't!"

- Freeman and Mariner

"Great work nerve-pinching those Vulcans, Baby Bear. Who knew you'd be better at it than they are?"
"I did? But I don't know how to nerve-pinch."
"Ha! Tell that to Spock and Spock."

- Shaxs and Rutherford

"Hey! What are you two doing back here? You've drawn my attention."

- Vulcan Starfleet Guard

"I never get to clean the conference room."

- Mariner

"Let's *bleep*this *buzz*up!"

- Jack Ransom

"Today didn't have to end in eels!"

- Clar

"Captain! Captain, Someone is replacing everyone on the ship with imposters who claim not to know me! We might be in a parallel dimension!"
"And you are?"
"Uh, wait, is this... is this not the Cerritos?"
"This is the Alhambra. Did you get on the wrong ship?"
"... *bleep*! They all look the same!"

- T'Ana and the Alhambra captain

"You clearly want us to say that the captain and her crew messed up, but we simply don't have the full story, and that's the truth! Whatever they did, I guarantee you it was all for good. You have shown no evidence that they're guilty of a crime, in fact, I find you guilty of trying to take them down with this sham of a trial! DRUMHEAD!"

- Boimler

"I challenge you all to a duel! Pick your weapons. I pick the mind."
"Get out of here, Q! No! We are done with random stuff today. We're not dealing with any of your Q bull*bleep*."
"Oh s'il vous plaît, Mariner. I want to put Humanity to the ultimate test."
"Okay, I'm not French. No. Go find Picard."
"Oh, Picard. He's no fun, he's always quoting Shakespeare, he's always making wine..."

- Q and Mariner

Background information[]

Production history[]


  • This is one of seventeen Star Trek episodes with titles derived from Latin.
  • Clar's renting out the room for 22 minutes is a reference to how the runtime of a 30 minute television show, minus commercials, is 22 minutes long.



Links and references[]


Special guest star[]

Guest cast[]

Characters with unidentified voices

Background characters[]

USS Alhambra
USS Cerritos
Gorn wedding planet
K'Tuevon Prime


10-4; 23rd century; 24-hour clock; alien; Andorian; Antaran; anti-grav sled; atmosphere; "Baby Bear"; backpack; Bajoran; balloon; beam; Beam of Celebration; beaming; birthday (birthday party); birthday cake; Borg; bosses; bridge; bridge crew; bridge duty; "bug alien"; *bleep*; burial; burner; Caitian; camera; capital world; captain (aka "cap'n"); "Captain Clarity"; "Casa de Ransom"; cat; century; chair; chess; chess piece; chest; clarity; classified; Cleaner, The; cleaning; Clicket; comm silence; commander (rank); commanders (title); commendation; conference; conference room; corneas; Crazy Ivan; Crusher, Beverly; crying; customs; cyborg; cyborg implant; Danar, Roga; death; definition; Dinobulan flesh-eating bacteria; dismissed; disruptor rifle; doctor; download; dumbass; dungeon; Earth; ensign; environmental suit; EPS capacitor; etchers; etching; evasive maneuvers (evasive maneuver 84; evasive maneuver 88); event silo; extinction; faking; fan dance; Federation; flight manuals; French; French language; *bleep* up; *bleep* ing; fur; FYI; garbage bag; gavel; genetic engineering; ghost (Ronin); "giant Spock"; girl; goal post; Gorn; Gorn wedding planet; governments; gratitude; great history stone; guard; gun; hair (fur); hell; hockey stick; holographic imager; honor; Horn of Candor; Human (aka Humanity); ice; ideas; Imperium Magistrate; impulse drive; injustice; judge; judge's bench; Kaelon; K'Tuevon event space renter's daughter; K'Tuevon Prime; K'Tuevon Prime eel; K'Tuevon Prime's moon; K'Tuevon Prime's sun; Kirk, James T.; Klingon fonts; Klingons; lamp (Howard family candle); lies; lieutenant; lieutenant commander; lint roller; "lower decks"; lying; map; marriage; martial arts; metal; mind games; minutes; month; needles; neutral zone; nitrogen intoxication; "okey-dokey"; orbital skydiving; Orion; oxygen; Package, The; PADD; parallel dimension; party; pawn; pee; penis; people; phaser (phaser bank; phaser rifle); Phylos; Picard, Jean-Luc; playing card; pottery class; Prime; Prime language; prison; *bleep*; puzzle; Q; Q's planetoid; Q's staff; quarters; queen; reboot; red alert; Remans; Remus; repair bay; replication; rescue; resort; restart; restaurants; Romulan; Romulan High Council; Romulan Neutral Zone; Romulan Star Empire; Romulus; rook; salt vampire; scanning; "Scottish planet"; seconds; senior officers; Shakespeare, William; sham; ship; ship logs; shot; shuttlecraft dolly; shuttlecraft repair tools; Singh, Khan Noonien; singing; sir; situation; soccer; soccer ball; song; soul food; Spanish language; speakers; Spock; stardate; Starfleet; Starfleet insignia; Starfleet uniform; starship repair tool; stasis chamber; stellar cartography; stylus; supervillain; sword; Tank of Contempt; tattoo; testimony; thank-you dinner; thing; time; tour; trial; truth; Twain, Mark; underpants; unmarked grave; victory; vineyards; Vulcan (planet); Vulcan (species); Vulcan language; Vulcan museum; Vulcan nerve pinch; Vulcan phaser; walls; wedding; weekends; wine; witness; Yar, Tasha; year

Starship references[]

Alhambra, USS; Cerritos, USS; California-class; cargo management unit (unnamed); Class F shuttlecraft (unnamed); Clicket ship; D7 class (unnamed); D'deridex-class (unnamed); Enterprise-E, USS; Ferengi shuttle (unnamed); Jem'Hadar fighter (unnamed); long range shuttle (unnamed); NCC-77567; NCC-77567 shuttlecraft; Romulan Bird-of-Prey (unnamed); Sequoia; Spacedock-type (unnamed); spaceship; T'Plana-Hath-type (unnamed); Tholian ship (unnamed); Tweerk; Type 6 shuttlecraft (unnamed); Type 6A shuttlecraft

Meta references[]

bleep; censor bar; flashback; intertitle

External links[]

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