- On the heels of the blockbuster Through the Mirror miniseries comes a brand-new Next Generation series, featuring untold tales of Captain Jean-Luc Picard and the crew of the USS Enterprise-D! Interstellar odd couple Worf and Beverly Crusher undertake a difficult mission, but can they overcome their differences to work together? Takes place during Star Trek: The Next Generation's critically acclaimed fourth season! Featuring covers by Mirror Broken co-creator and designer J.K. Woodward! The unexpected twist ending of Through the Mirror continues!
Worf and Barclay trek through waterlogged tunnels before they come across their targets, infected Lolligans. The feral creatures attack, their primal strength proving too much for the two and forcing them to use their phasers. Once the infected are stunned, Crusher and Data run in and make plans to take the infected to the main triage centre. Though no cure for this viral infection has yet been found, it is fortunately limited to the Lolligan race.
And it is for this reason that the USS Enterprise-D has been dispatched to the Lolligan homeworld. Unfortunately, the aliens' limited contact with the Federation means the medical teams have significant research to do on their biology before a cure can be developed. The only other recourse would be to evacuate the planet and place the entire Lolligan race in cryo-stasis on starbases. A plan Picard is forced to prepare for given that time is against them.
At the main building, the away team meets with the ruling triumvirate, Tonlos, Yeeglot and Roolan. The conversation that follows however is a not a pleasant one, there is very little that Federation science can do for the Lolligans given the time constraints and no one wants to see an entire species stuffed into storage. Tonlos offers any resources and aid Crusher's team might require but Worf is forced to advise them to at least prepare for an evacuation. Before leaving, Crusher asks why the buildings are all so humid. The simple reason is that the Lolligans prefer such an atmosphere.
Back in the science centre, Crusher and Data examine the contradictory data. Not only is there no record of such a virulent plague occurring in all of Lolligan history, there is also no sign of external infection or contamination nor is the disease contagious. That's why Barclay thinks the "plague" is a botched attempt at genetic engineering. With that theory in mind, Crusher calls Roolan who explains that the Lolligans started out as sea-dwellers only for evolution to put them on the land. Feeling nostalgic, the Lolligans implemented mass genetic manipulation to make them capable of surviving in aquatic environments. And only now has the peace and serenity of that decision been shattered.
Once the call ends, the three are convinced that the eugenics are the cause of the plague. Rather than just manipulate their genome, the Lolligans seemed to have somehow reversed their evolution. But as Barclay theorizes, if the Lolligans' love of water is causing this plague, can't they just dehydrate them?
Elsewhere, Worf has begun testing the evacuation transporters only for the three volunteers to succumb to the plague. Watching from the lab, Data and Barclay quickly finish their "dehydration grenade" and run to the rescue, the silicia oxiform detonation reverting the three Lolligans to normal.
With the immediate crisis passed, the away team meets with the triumvirate again with Crusher stating that the genetic manipulation will need to be completely reversed if they want to keep the virus at bay. Though such an undertaking will be a massive cultural shock, Picard readily offers the Federation's aid.
That evening, Barclay takes a stroll through the halls, complimenting the passing Data on his throwing arm. At that, Data pins Barclay to the wall. With rising panic, Barclay realizes that he faces the Data from his universe, who has come to bring him home.
- Worf • Beverly Crusher • Jean-Luc Picard • Wesley Crusher • Reginald Barclay (mirror) • Data • Data (mirror) • Roolan • Tonlos • Yeeglot
Starships and vehicles
Races and cultures
- TNG episode: "Unnatural Selection": Genetic engineering causes a viral plague to spread to those in proximity of the engineered subjects.
- TNG episode: "Genesis": Natural evolution is reversed.
- DS9 episode: "Doctor Bashir, I Presume": The Lolligans did not initially mention the genetic engineering due to knowing the Federation's stance on the subject.
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