Outer space. The Feather Boa Of A Natural Phenomenon That Can Travel Faster Than Light is snapping at the ship's heels as it runs across the ice floes to escape Simon Legree's whip. Quantum and T'Pol join Trip and May-Backwash on the Desert Storm Bridge, and Quantum asks about a headcount. Trip says everyone's accounted for, "including one quadruped." Shot of Porthos. Awwww! "Wuldja like to try out the Cap'n's chair?" Trip asks, gesturing at a canister and some oddly fisherman-like netting. Where's the cup holder? Quantum tousles Porthos's ears before nervously asking where the comm is. Nice one -- good to see he seems to have his priorities in order for this episode. And now comes the pep talk. There's a notable absence of gazelle references -- which, of course, means absolutely nothing to me -- as he promises the whole qrew that they're going to make it after all. Are captains allowed to lie outright like that? Quantum paces as much as he can in the cramped Desert Storm Bridge -- just sit down already, you're taking up everyone else's oxygen! -- and asks how much time before Feather Boa Harry hits. "One minute, five seconds," T'Pol reports. To be insanely precise. Quantum gives hull polarizing orders -- shouldn't that have been done already?
Outer space shot. It looks as though Enterprise makes a right turn directly into Feather Boa Harry. Strange. I thought the storm was coming from behind them in the last CGI shot. I guess they figure that heading straight into the storm will actually minimize the time they have to spend in it. Dialogue to that effect would have been appreciated -- not all of us have geek husbands explaining the finer points of stuff like that.
T'Pol continues the countdown, and the ship starts to shake, rattle, but not yet roll. More of T'Pol's counting. Porthos looks nervous. At ten seconds, Quantum comms, "All hands, brace for impact." Of course, all I can think of is Airplane!, when the passengers are told to get into "crash positions" and they fling themselves about the cabin with one of the Hare Krishnas draped over a seat making choking noises. Porthos retreats somewhere. Okay, that did piss me off. As much as I hate putting my cats in carriers, Porthos should be in a padded carrier that is strapped in somewhere to prevent his little body from being thrown around the ship! It's like when people allow their cats to walk freely around their cars. If they got into an accident, those animals wouldn't fly through the windshield because their bodies are too light. Instead, they would smash against it at a velocity of at least thirty-five miles per hour, because there is absolutely nothing they can do to brace themselves! I hate stupid people who endanger their pets with their stupidity. Feather Boa Of A Natural Phenomenon That Can Travel Faster Than Light, a.k.a. Feather Boa Harry, hits the ship. Some dumb qrewmember, who didn't listen to his captain telling him to brace for impact, stumbles down the catwalk. May-Backbend technobabbles a problem, and Trip tells him to try, try again. More tossing and turning. Finally, the ship seems to have climbed above the turbulence, and the seatbelt sign is turned off for the moment. An unhurt Porthos sticks his head out. I want that dog, now!
Sashaying down the catwalk, Quantum shows off the newest winter wear from Calvin Klingon and investigates the ranks. More turbulence. It's like riding the Turn-Me-Green Line to the MFA! He leans down to pick up an e-pad. "Yours?" he gestures at some random qrew-chick, who nods. Quantum looks down at the pad. Rude! What if it was her diary? "Looks like you're almost finished," Quantum comments, and hands the e-pad back. The qrew-chick steps forward to take it and asks tremulously, "You wouldn't know who was the first Vulcan ambassador to Earth? Six letters, ends with an 'R'?" Dude, she sounds like she's twelve. "Solkar, I think," Quantum tells her kindly. You'd think someone serving on the first warp five starship, who went through Starfleet training, would know that little factoid. "Thank you, Captain," Ensign Pre-Pubescent trembles in the presence of his greatness. "Don't mention it," Quantum assures her with gentle sternness. Having fulfilled his duty of speaking to one unknown qrewmember a day, Quantum checks on Hoshi, who is studiously brushing her teeth with a blue light. Question: Why are all the lights on this ship blue? Blue lights in the Decon chamber, blue emergency lights, and now blue-lit Aquafresh. Which, factually speaking, really should be a twist of green, white, and red. And now that you mention it, my mom's got a whole drawerful of spare Christmas bulbs if they need them. Hoshi sighs and pays some lip service to her purported claustrophobia just so that Continuity can wet his pants. "Your quarters will probably feel like a ballroom after this," Quantum yuks, apparently making a shout-out to the fact that Linda Park is a sometime ballroom dancer. The ship shakes again. "You're the Captain, can't you just order the storm to calm down a little?" Hoshi asks. Hoshi, he's the captain, he's not God -- because really, what would God need with a starship? Seriously, though, Linda Park must've choked on bile when she uttered that Worst. Line. Ever. Quantum says he'll see what he can do and moves along down the catwalk. He pauses briefly at an area hung with blankets, but doesn't bother to knock to inquire if they've accepted Jesus Christ as their Savior. Since Trip is playing cards with some random qrew, Quantum decides to stop there for a good little gossip instead. He nods to the blankets and asks how Trip is faring with their guests. All Trip knows is that one of them came out and asked them to stop making so much noise. "Now, I've bin reel friendly -- even asked them to join the game. Duzzint seem lak they wunna hev ennythang to do with us," Trip finishes. Yeees, I think I understood all that. Quantum requests that Trip give them time to adjust. Trip agrees and laments the loss of the camping trip on the planet with way too much daylight.
Storm Sickbay. Reed wanders by, looking a little green around the edges. Phlox asks what's troubling him. Reed ducks under the handrails into the "examination room" and fusters about doctor-patient confidentiality. Phlox asks him if he's having gastrointestinal "distress." "Is it that obvious?" Reed asks. Phlox alludes to a note in Reed's medical file about "an unfortunate incident during zero-g training." Reed makes a long-past-its-freshness-date crack about "the Vomitorium," and Phlox gives him a Dramamine hypospray, assuring him it will last for twelve hours. Reed seems to feel the effects immediately, and thanks him. "Feeling all right, Malcolm?" Quantum asks, creepily appearing as if from nowhere. Reed jumps back on the catwalk and assures him, "Never better!" He minces off, but when the ship shakes, he makes a nauseous face. I hope lis lays in a good supply of airsickness bags. And rubber sheets. Quantum turns an inquiring face to Phlox, who tells him that the qrew are just reporting some bumps and bruises from the turbulence. Nothing more. Quantum checks to make sure Phlox has enough room, and says he could see about moving some stuff to the aft section. "Nonsense!" Phlox protests. "I have plenty of room. I find the close quarters rather comforting -- it reminds me of home." "I didn't realize space was at a premium on Denobula," Quantum comments. "Twelve billion people sharing a continent," Phlox shrugs. Quantum tells Phlox to let him know if he has a change of heart.