Vanishing Point

Episode Report Card
Keckler: F | Grade It Now!
The Inner Light's Pox-Ridden Bastard Cousin

Sick Bay. Quantum and T'Pol cross-examine Phlox and find out that Hoshi made several visits to him, complaining of feeling left-out and ignored. Phlox shows them the scans he took of Hoshi, which seemed "perfectly normal at the time," but now show that all her molecules are doing a disappearing act. Phlox only took a closer look at them when he heard that Hoshi was AWOL. In the background, we can see Hoshi sitting on a counter, looking by turns sulky and scared.

Transporter Room. Trip discovers that the phase coils aren't aligning. They aren't synchronized, either. This is not a good thing, and it's the reason Hoshi's molecules are doing a fade to black. It all happened after Trip transported, so Trip agonizes over how he should have made her go first. Or maybe they should have checked the phase coil alignment and synchronization before the beamed a second person up? "I tole her I wouldn't leave her alone with that storm comin', but she insisted on goin' second," Trip laments. "She wanted to be sure it wuz workin', that it wuz safe. I'm the wun that shuld be missin'. I tole her to go first. She should'uv listened to me." Sitting in the corridor, Hoshi comments, "It wasn't your fault." Quantum angrily orders that the transporter be taken offline until it is fixed: "Starfleet promised me this sort of thing wouldn't happen." What? Like scores of people are suddenly going to line up to transport off the ship? Phlox brings up the bad news that if Hoshi's molecules are decomposing, maybe they shouldn't be looking for Hoshi as much as they should be looking for her sub-cellular remains. "You're wrong, Doctor, I'm still in one piece -- you just can't see me," Hoshi tells them. Quantum strickenly tells T'Pol to get Phlox's help in recalibrating the sensors, and start scanning for her remains. Trip looks very pensive as Quantum comms May-I'm-Acting-Far-Too-Cheerful-For-This-Scene-Of-Mourning and tells him to break orbit and resume their previous course. So, do you see why that is Significant? Because, earlier, he wouldn't allow them to break orbit until they found Ensign Invisible. Quantum tells everyone that he'll be in his Ready Room, and walks right through Hoshi on his way out. Because they had to have at least one of those body-through-body scenes. What I'm wondering is how exactly does Hoshi know she's not dead and doomed to haunt Enterprise for all eternity? Why am I even asking? It's all a friggin' perchance-to-dream sequence!

Creeping through corridors, Phlox and Trip scan for Hoshi's lovely bones while Hoshi follows them, babbling that they're barking up the wrong tree. They stop and scan a bit more. "If you spent a little more time trying to figure out what happened to me --" Hoshi starts to accuse, but stops because she hears voices again. This time, they're alien. Hoshi goes down another shaft, looking for the voices, and hears Trip and Reed talking indistinctly, saying, "What's the problem?" "The stream's too unstable," and "It's as easy as one, two --" Hoshi is distracted by Trip telling Phlox he found something, and goes back to their corridor. They scan, and seem to determine that a smear of green ooze is actually Hoshi. "Why would she have come down here?" Trip wonders. Phlox doubts they'll ever know, and pulls out a little envelope and what looks like a pH testing strip, saying, "Captain Archer will want Hoshi's parents to have this." He will? Phlox scrapes up a portion of the green ooze with the pH test strip and puts it in the envelope: "They're both alive, aren't they?" First of all, what the hell in our bodies would leave behind an ooze of that color? And secondly, what parents in their right mind would want a boogery pap smear to remember their dead child by? That's just fifty-two different kinds of ick. Trip affirms that Hoshi's parents are indeed alive, then tells Phlox to go on ahead, as he needs a moment alone. Apparently, Hoshi thinks very highly of what Trip feels for her, as she dream-ons that Trip bewails and bemoans her "passing." He says pretty much exactly what he said in the transporter room, except that he ends with, "And now look what you've done." Trip leaves. Hoshi starts to hear the alienish again, and investigates. This time she spies some blue aliens fiddling with the ship's insides. It doesn't look to be on the up-and-up, but I'm surprisingly unconcerned. I think it must be because NONE OF THIS IS REAL!

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