37 INT. HOLOSUITE
Thirishar ch’Thane, aka SHAR, stands on the bare grid of one of Quark’s new holosuites (as briefly seen in 14x16). Surrounding him are reams and reams of technical data, DNA scans, genetic information, hanging projected in mid-air.
He wears rough civilian clothes, scuffed and dishevelled as if he has been on the run. He is tense and wary, antennae stiff, as if expecting to have to run again at any moment.
Over the last year and a half, the
Tholian Assembly has shared a lot
of its own intelligence about the
Shedai meta-genome. Yet somehow,
that data has never included the
sequences we need to fix the flaws
in our gene therapy programme.
As Shar talks, the data scans enlarge in turn, then recede. Stepping up close to inspect them... is BASHIR. He stands in uniform, a full Commander, absorbing this complex data as quickly and thoroughly as he can. Shar continues...
Of course, it might be the Treishya
deliberately trying to slow down
our research until they can figure
out how to take credit for it and
solidify their own hold on power.
Bashir looks behind himself, appalled at this notion, and sees SARINA looking back at him equally disturbed.
Either way, the programme I run
with Professor Marthrossi zh’Thiin
isn’t getting the information we
need. And that’s why we need your
help, Julian. Because the Andorian
people are running out of time.
A list of file names appears in mid-air...
I’ve included all our research,
but I can already tell you it’s not
enough. To finish what we started,
you will need to access Starfleet’s
secure medical archives and get
access to the information we can’t,
figure out how to put it to use,
and then get the cure back to us.
The hologram of Shar JERKS, as if he hears them coming for him. Time to tie this up.
I know I’m asking a lot, Julian.
But I don’t know who else I can
trust. So... that’s my plea, in
a nutshell. Save us. Please.
The hologram and the data files dissipate into nothingness. Bashir and Sarina stand there absorbing the task ahead.
How long have they got?
From a quick glance, if they don’t
instigate a successful programme
within the next twelve months, the
Andorian species will be extinct
by the end of the next century.
So we need the Shedai data. Now.
Starfleet Medical will never let
me see it. It’s under the highest
level of classification there is.
Bashir turns to his girlfriend, and says out loud what they both knew from the moment the question was raised.
But you know who could probably
get a hold of it for us.
They’ll want something in return.
Something of equal value.
Bashir nods, coming to terms with it. No other choice.
I know. Get in touch with L’Haan.
Tell her... you’ve figured out how
to get me to sign up with you. If
I want access to the Shedai meta-
genome to save the Andorians...
I’ll have to join Section 31.
They gaze at each other, daunted - this is it.
38 INT. HOTEL CORRIDOR
A seedy mid-20th century hotel, the kind of place one does not stay in if one has the money to be anywhere else. Damp, deserted, poorly lit, wallpaper peeling. Lt Cmdrs NOG and CANDLEWOOD step into this, looking around in confusion.
Alright, I know I didn’t spend as
much time in Las Vegas as you...
but this is not how I remember it.
Blessed Exchequer... what happened
They both creep forward a few more steps... reach a hotel door, number 22 - except one of the 2s is hanging loose. Nog looks to Candlewood - is this the place? Candlewood shrugs - no idea. So Nog reaches out, KNOCKS on the door.
A sharp YELP and a THUD from the other side of the door - someone dropped something in surprise. A SHUFFLE as the person moves to the door, nervous breaths and thumping heart that Nog can hear even through the door.
Vic? Is that you?
An eye peers through the peephole under the door number...
Who is it? Show me your face!
Unfortunately Nog is too short to see through the peephole. Candlewood stands behind his friend, grabs him by the waist and HEFTS him up higher to be visible through the hole... a GASP from the other side... Candlewood puts Nog down again.
Thank God Hetik has been forcing
me to work out more lately.
The door creeps open only an inch and a face appears - VIC.
Nog! Kid! What are you doing here?
The door swings open a bit more, and at last they can see Vic properly. He looks dreadful - haggard and terrified.
Me? What are you doing here? This
is a long way from the Dunes, Vic.
Look, I can’t talk right now, kid.
It’s great to see you but you
gotta get outta here.
Mister Fontaine, I don’t know if you
remember me. I’m the computer
specialist. Maybe if you explain
what’s happened to your pro-
gramme, I can help to fix it -
No! Don’t get involved, okay? The
fat lady’s about to sing.
FOOTSTEPS and VOICES from further down the corridor - Vic gasps and SLAMS the door shut, leaving Nog and Candlewood in the hotel corridor. Then around the corner appear...
...SQUARE JAW and his two heavies. The three thugs stop in surprise at the Starfleet officers’ unexpected presence, the metallic glint of guns twitching in their hands.
Who the hell are you?
Good. Then stay out of the way.
Square Jaw points his GUN, holding them off... while his two heavies KICK the hotel door down and barrel inside.
Nog and Candlewood stand there scared as the sounds of a scuffle filter out from the hotel room - SHOUTS and THUMPS and OOFS. Nog tenses to run to his friend’s defence, but Square Jaw re-emphasises the weapon in his hand...
...then the thugs reappear, dragging a bruised and bloodied Vic between them. The singer is moaning, semi-conscious.
My friends and me are gonna go
now. Don’t follow us, or we’ll kill him.
Square Jaw keeps his gun on them as the trio drag Vic back down the corridor... at the corner he pauses, considers...
Ya know what, on second thought...
we don’t need no witnesses.
BLAM BLAM BLAM. The bullets hit Nog and Candlewood...
...a WHOOSH of photons...
39 INT. HOLOSUITE (INTERCUT)
...and Nog and Candlewood stand on the bare holosuite grid, holding their chests, feeling where they were just “shot”.
Okay, excuse my language but what
the frinx just happened?
We were killed. Once you’re killed
in the programme... you can’t
ever go back into it again.
So that’s the end of Vic Fontaine?
No. I will not let it be the end. I
fought to get the Vic programme
working again for nearly a year,
and I’m not leaving it like this.
You and me, John - we’re going
to figure out how to get back to
Las Vegas despite being dead -
and we’re going to save Vic’s life.
Off Nog’s resolve to help his friend...
40 INT. QUARK’S NEW BAR
QUARK leans on his bar, dejected. The place is empty.
I just don’t know what to do.
Maybe I should demand a refund.
You know the first Rule, Quark.
“Once you have their money,
you never give it back.”
They should change it. “Once you
have any money, you should
never give it to anyone.”
So Viray came up with nothing?
Nothing. Six months of searching,
and the best private investigator
money can buy can’t find any sign
of Morn anywhere. Utterly useless.
Does he owe you money or something?
That’s the worst part. He actually
paid off his tab before he left.
Like he knew he wouldn’t be back.
Then maybe you should let him go.
He’s in trouble, Rwogo. I can feel
it in my lobes. I want Morn safe
and sound. I want my friend back.
Rwogo stands back from the other side of the bar, pondering the situation. Then reaches across and takes Quark’s hands.
Then let’s stop throwing good
money after bad. If you want
to find your friend... let’s you
and me go find him. Together.
Quark is touched by Rwogo’s support. Then the WHOOSH of holosuite doors opening upstairs... they both look up...
41 INT. QUARK’S NEW BAR - UPPER LEVEL (CONTINUOUS)
BASHIR and SARINA walk out of the first holosuite...
I’m just concerned... what if they
figure out why we’re really there?
Well, we’ll have to be smarter than
all of them put together, won’t we?
NOG and CANDLEWOOD walk out of the second holosuite...
We could always reset the code to
the factory standards. That would
at least let us back in.
And erase Vic’s memories with it.
He wouldn’t be the Vic we know.
Alright, well... lots of holosuite
programmes have a secret back
door to let the programmer them-
selves in. If we can find that...
A third holosuite door opens... TENMEI walks out of it at top speed. She wears a LEOTARD, all flushed and sweaty...
No no no no no no no no...
SLAINE walks out behind her, also in a leotard but looking much more comfortable than Tenmei, hair tied up, smiling...
Aww, is it too hot for you, Prynn?
Too hot for me? That place is too
hot for life. It’s unnatural.
Not for Cardassians.
Is there a problem, ladies?
You shut your face.
Nog, Candlewood and Slaine all chuckle at Tenmei’s expense, and the four younger officers head down the stairs. Sarina and Bashir follow at a distance, muttering sotto...
You know... Tenmei would be a
good person to have on our side.
Maybe... if we let her know that
the request came from Shar...
By now Tenmei has reached the ground floor, walks straight behind the bar to Quark’s bemusement... and tips a whole GLASS OF WATER over her own head. Then a COMM...
Cenn to all senior staff.
Go ahead, Colonel. We’re all here.
The captain wants to leave in
an hour. I suggest you all get
back to your quarters and get
dressed on the double.
They all look between themselves. They’re excited for this.
We’re on our way, Colonel.
Bashir taps the comm closed, and all eight draw themselves up and head for the door. Big day.
END OF ACT FOUR