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The Inner Fright

Quantum's Ready Room. T'Pol hands over an e-pad of the Hippie Vulcans' (tm byobkenobi) needs, which include a passel of plasma coolant and medical supplies. "Tavin has also requested the recipe for Chicken Marsala," T'Pol finishes. Quantum leers that Chef's recipes are only available to those with NSA clearance, but they might be able to make an exception in this case. As T'Pol makes to leave, Quantum stops her, saying, "I thought you'd be spending a little more time getting to know our guests." T'Pol tells her captain that she's very busy with her duty roster. Quantum corrects her, saying what she's busy doing is avoiding the Hippie Vulcans, and then gets on his absurdly ill-informed moral high horse and tells her that, while she may not approve of what the Hippie Vulcans are doing, "for all [T'Pol and Quantum] know, they're onto something." T'Pol's not convinced. "Just because they smile and eat chicken doesn't mean they've learned to master their emotions," she comments. Reminds me of the Friends tirade where Joey eats chicken and looks through his secret peephole. Quantum comments, "Maybe I'm just relieved to finally meet some Vulcans who aren't giving me a hard time." Because it's all about you, Quantum, isn't it? ISN'T IT? T'Pol tells Quantum that the Hippie Vulcans aren't the first to attempt this Emotional Embrace. "Others have tried to reintegrate their emotions; they all failed," T'Pol elaborates. "It's very dangerous." Quantum says, "Unless my instincts are way off [and they have been in sixteen other episodes, but who's counting?], they don't seem very dangerous to me. But I could be wrong." Way to construct a very large loophole for yourself, Cpt. Dork. Quantum encourages T'Pol to "keep an open mind." T'Pol leaves.

Mess Hall. T'Pol gets a cup of tea. B'Stiller enters and comments, "So this is the mess hall. The crew must not have much of an appetite." T'Pol explains that it's late and most of them are sleeping. B'Stiller examines the replicator and asks if she can help him operate it. He professes to want what she's drinking, which is mint tea. T'Pol obliges, and B'Stiller stands too close for comfort, while examining T'Pol's profile. He sips the tea and reacts. "It has a lot of flavor," he says. T'Pol tells him he can try something else, but B'Stiller says, "No, it's fine. I'm just surprised. Do you like it?" Instead of answering, T'Pol tells him that the replicator is limited in its Vulcan selections. "But it can make Vulcan tea?" B'Stiller asks. T'Pol tells him it can. "Interesting," B'Stiller says, getting in her personal space again. T'Pol tries to leave, but B'Stiller stops her, asking how long she's lived with the humans. T'Pol tells him that she spent two years on Earth and seven months on Enterprise. B'Stiller says, "That's a long way away from home. Living here has obviously affected you in ways in you don't realize." T'Pol catches on to what he's getting at and says, "You may be right; on occasion, I also drink chamomile tea." Heh. B'Stiller ruins it by saying that she has a sense of humor, "a concept that most Vulcans can't seem to grasp." T'Pol comments that he's easily amused. "There's that humor again," B'Stiller says, and asks why she stays on the human ship. T'Pol tells him she's needed as Enterprise's science officer. B'Stiller asks if that's her only reason, and implies that she's more attached to humans than she's willing to acknowledge. T'Pol professes not to know what he's talking about, so B'Stiller implies that her emotions are "closer to the surface than other Vulcans," and therefore easier to discern. T'Pol tells him it's because she hasn't done her meditations yet, or put on her protective Vulcan cream, SPF 800. They argue whether it's dangerous for Vulcans to embrace their emotions, and B'Stiller tells her it's all hooey to think it's anything but safe as houses. "Commander Tucker suggested that I try something called 'pizza.' [Not catfish?] Would you care to join me?" T'Pol rebuffs him, telling him she's already eaten, and starts to leave, but she pauses and turns back to B'Stiller to say, "Another time, perhaps." B'Stiller raises his mug of tea to her.

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