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Captain’s Log. Stardate 2015.06.09. The Enterprise has received a distress signal from planet Marus 4, a little-known class M planet on the outskirts of Federation territory. The subspace message we received spoke of an immediate, unknown threat to life on Marus 4. I have instructed Mr. Sulu to warp us into orbit around the planet, but have asked Ensign Chekhov to activate our cloaking mechanisms at the earliest possible moment as we near Marus 4, so that Mr. Spock and Dr. McCoy can examine sensor data about the nature of life there before we make our presence known. No Federation vessel has ever visited this planet.
Uhura: Captain Kirk, it’s Chief Engineer Scott. He’s requested that you join him immediately in crew living quarters on deck 9. A security team will meet you there.
Kirk: Mr. Sulu, you have the helm. Mr. Spock, with me, on the double.
(scene on Deck 9)
Scott: Aye, Captain. It’s engineer Ensign Cowan, one of my best men. He didn’t report for duty. When I used the ship’s intercom to hail into his room, he didn’t sound like himself. I came for a look….thought maybe he’d had too much Romulan ale. But I’ve never seen anything like it.
Kirk: Call Dr. McCoy in sick bay. Have him come here at once. (Kirk lightly slaps Cowan’s face). Ensign Cowan, can you address me?
(Cowan is sweaty, gray, gazing into middle distance with a thousand-yard stare).
Scott: Are ye all right, Cowan?
Kirk: Ensign, are you in pain?
(Cowan’s cabin door swooshes open).
McCoy: What the devil is going on here? Jim, I’ve got a sick bay full of junior officers sickened by eating spoiled Plomeek broth the Enterprise picked up during our shore leave on Vulcan.
Say, he looks bad….what happened?
Kirk: It’s Ensign Cowan. Mr. Scott found him this way when he didn’t report to his station in engineering.
(McCoy takes out tricorder, scans Cowan for several seconds.)
McCoy: Beats all I’ve ever seen Jim. Cowan’s cognitive function is down to a third of normal. He hasn’t had a stroke, but doesn’t even know his own name. His ...
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