As a fleet of Tholian vessels closes in, Kirk and the rest of the crew struggle to free the Enterprise from the Tholian Web before it's too late. And with the destruction of the ship hanging in the balance, Bright Eyes will have to make a choice between their human friends or going home. The final voyages of the original mission continue here!
As Tholians close in on the ship, Spock calls for red alert. Down in sickbay, Bright Eyes cries about the advance of the Tholian warriors, with McCoy calling Spock about it, as well as insisting that the Vulcan return to sickbay so he can be properly analyzed. However, Spock refuses to leave his post, even if, for once, he doesn't know what to do.
On the hull of Ayal's ship, Kirk orders Sulu and Ayal to jump. The helmsman sets his phaser to overload and hurls it as the crystalline aliens, breaking their line long enough for him and Ayal to jump, followed by Kirk bursting out of the airlock. The respite is brief as the Tholians begin firing energy bolts towards the three, with Kirk contacting Spock about his plan to break free from the net. As he explains however, an energy bolt strikes his suit and it begins leaking oxygen. As he begins to asphyxiate, Kirk orders Sulu to continue to the USS Enterprise and for Spock to take the ship to safety the instant he triggers the explosion. Sparing one last look at his ship, Kirk readies his hand.
Spock calls engineering to inform them of the need for warp only for Scotty to overrule it on the grounds of the cold engines needing thirty minutes. Bereft of any other options, Spock orders Scott to recreate the events at Psi 2000 and initiate a cold jump. Having heard everything, Christine Chapel feels Spock is acting decidedly emotionally. Watching Bright Eyes attack the wall of their room, McCoy agrees, confirming that Spock's body temperature is two degrees above normal, a lingering side effect of initiating a mind meld with an alien whose psychology is so markedly different from their own. Without giving himself time to purge the alien thought processes, Spock is reacting to the situation as Bright Eyes would. Down below, McCoy and Chapel physically close the doors to the Tholian's quarters just as they punch through the hull and ride the pressure release into space.
As Sulu and Ayal enter the bridge, Spock recomposes himself and is content to watch Bright Eyes rescue Kirk. Dodging the fire of the elites, Bright Eyes grabs the barely alive Kirk and carries him back to the Enterprise, their transit being accelerated by Ayal's exploding ship, the ice shattering the web.
Sometime later, as the partially frozen Enterprise warps back home, Spock, still in command, records a log condemning himself for his recent failures, though praising Sulu's heroism. He also notes that Kirk has suffered extreme radiation burns and if not for the transporter quickly coming back online when the web was destroyed, he would be dead, something that Spock fears he already is given McCoy's lack of word on Kirk's condition. But more than that, in a manner unbecoming of any Vulcan or Captain, Spock is afraid.
Retiring to his quarters, Sulu indulges his botany habit before Ayal enters. After confirming to the helmsman that she can survive without her space suit for periods of time, Ayal asks what "man" means. Sulu is confused, as Ayal knew what "her" meant, but answers that man denotes his gender identification. Curious, Ayal asks if humans ever change gender or why humans cling to an outdated method of expression. After all, she is just Ayal. Isn't that enough? Especially when it comes to expressing attraction.
On Lloyd Zeta-9, Trespasser scuttles across the ruined surface to meet with a colleague in a transport capsule. Upon arrival, the Black Tholian gripes about how much help they offered the Tholians only for the crystalline aliens to muck it all up, dismaying at the two being "the only adults in the room." While their colleague is unconcerned, Trespasser returns to her preferred form, a black housecat, in a huff, wishing that it could be just the two of them. With a laugh, Isis is picked up by Gary Seven who reminds that this will be their last mission. All they have to do is save the universe.
- Ayal • Beauregard • Bright Eyes • Christine Chapel • Pavel Chekov • Isis • James T. Kirk • Leonard McCoy • Montgomery Scott • Gary Seven • Spock • Hikaru Sulu • Nyota Uhura
Starships and vehiclesEdit
- Referenced only
- Psi 2000
Races and culturesEdit
States and organizationEdit
- TOS episode: "The Devil in the Dark": Mind melding with a crystalline lifeform leaves Spock with some of the lifeform's resonant emotions.
- TOS episode: "The Naked Time": Spock instructs Scott to restart the engines in the same manner as on Psi 2000. Scott warns that such a method shot the crew back in time.
- TOS episode: "The Man Trap": Sulu's garden makes a return. His purple quarters from the episode are likewise recreated.
- TOS episode: "Assignment: Earth (episode)": Trespasser is revealed to be a Tholian guise taken on by Isis. Along with Gary Seven, she is acting as a benefactor to the Tholians.
Year Five, Issue 7
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Year Five, Issue 9