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Babel One (episode)

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Gral archer
Series: ENT
Season: 4
Original Airdate: 2005-01-28
Production Number: 088
Year: 2154
Date: November 12
Written by: Michael Sussman & Andre Bormanis
Directed by: David Straiton

Enterprise journeys to Babel with a Tellarite ambassador on board for peace talks with the Andorians, when a distress call from Shran is received.
Part 1 of 3


On the bridge of the Andorian warship Kumari, Commander Shran crawls out from under the damaged wreckage of his destroyed ship. He hails engineering, but no-one answers - Shran is one of the few survivors on board. Running over to the communications station, he sends a message to Andorian Imperial Command, informing them that the Kumari has been attacked by a Tellarite vessel. The computer announces a warp containment breach in two minutes - the ship is about to explode. Shran goes to another station and orders the crew to abandon the ship in escape pods.

In Captain Archer's quarters aboard the starship Enterprise, Archer and Hoshi Sato roleplay that Sato is a Tellarite ambassador, in preparation for the real ambassador's arrival. They discuss the Tellarites' frequent arguing, and Sato tells the captain to keep Porthos out of site during their stay - they consider canine a delicacy.

"Captain's starlog, November 12, 2154. We've arrived in orbit of Tellar Prime. Starfleet's ordered us to transport their ambassador to a neutral planet, designated as Babel, where Earth's mediators will try to settle a long standing trade dispute between the Tellarites and the Andorians."

While Archer and Trip walk through a corridor, Trip tells the captain that the engineering staff are busy trying to finish a mud bath which the Tellarites requested. He also asks why the Enterprise is transporting the Tellarites to Babel, since they have warp capability. Archer responds by explaining that Babel is on the far side of Andorian space, and that the Andorians won't allow Tellarite ships to pass through their territory. Archer reminds Trip that the conference is urgent - if it fails, it may mean war between Andor and Tellar. They enter a turbolift on their way to the launch bay.

Meanwhile, a shuttlepod docks with Enterprise, carrying the Tellarite delegation. Archer, T'Pol, Trip, Hoshi Sato and a group of MACOs arrive. Archer introduces himself, as does the representative of the Tellarite group, Ambassador Gral. Gral complains about the size and temperature of the ship, which Archer argues with, as Hoshi instructed him to do. The group exit the launch bay.

In Enterprise's mess hall, Trip some of the Tellarites tells a joke which they fail to understand. When Archer enters, T'Pol tells him that Gral requested another increase in the temperature. Trip is pleased by the honest nature of the Tellarites and comments that he finds it refreshing. Archer asks why Trip doesn't feel free to speak his mind with the crew of Enterprise and makes a comment about Trip's excessive smell. After Trip leaves, T'Pol tells the captain that the Tellarite ambassador has asked to speak with him. At the viewport, Archer tells Gral that the starship has just entered Andorian space. Gral recalls the last time he was in their territory, on the command deck of a Tellarite cruiser. He asks why his race should trust Starfleet to settle the dispute between the Andorians and Tellarites, when the Andorians helped save Earth from the Xindi. Archer reassures Gral that Starfleet's intention is to establish peaceful relations between the two races, which won't happen if they choose sides. When Gral argues that humans have no experience in interstellar affairs, Archer reminds Gral that the Tellarites' options are limited. Archer is called to the bridge.

There, Hoshi reports that Enterprise has recieved an Andorian distress call, which she repeats for Archer to hear. At the helm, Travis Mayweather notifies Archer that there are no other Andorian ships within range of the vessel that sent the distress call. After he tells the captain that Enterprise would take two hours at maximum warp to intercept the Andorian ship, Archer orders Mayweather to change course and asks Hoshi to notify Babel that Enterprise will be later than expected.

Enterprise arrives at the source of the distress call. Judging by the debris pattern left by the Andorian vessel, Malcolm Reed determines that the vessel's reactor breached. T'Pol detects large amounts of duranium alloy and concludes that the ship was probably an Andorian combat vessel. When Reed reports that he's found multiple bio-signs aboard escape pods launched from the ship, Archer orders that they are brought into Enterprise's launch bay. In order to prepare for casualties, he requests that Doctor Phlox is notified of their arrival.

In sickbay, Phlox is attending to Lieutenant Talas' injuries when Archer and T'Pol enter. When Archer tells Shran that nineteen of his crew were brought aboard, the Andorian commander informs Archer that the complement of the Kumari was eighty-six. Shran also Archer that he believes they were attacked by Tellarites. The Kumari was escorting the Andorian ambassador's ship to Babel when they were both attacked. The ambassador's vessel was instantly destroyed and the Kumari shortly after that. Shran is surprised at the attacking vessel's maneuverability. He suspects that the Tellarites have been improving their warships. T'Pol comments that Shran's theory is illogical. She wonders why the Tellarites would agree for Earth to mediate their dispute with the Andorians, if they had been planning the attack on the Andorian vessels. Shran tells T'Pol to ask the Tellarites the same question. He suggests that Enterprise scan for the Kumari's data recorder, a device which contains the sensor logs of the attack. Archer signals for T'Pol to continue with Shran's suggestion. When he tells Shran that a Tellarite delegation is aboard Enterprise, the Andorian becomes agitated. Archer reminds Shran that he's on board Archer's ship. The Andorian commander warns that if the two groups' proximities are significantly reduced, it will result in bloodshed.

In engineering, Malcolm Reed reports that he's analysed hull fragments which were brought aboard Enterprise and that the damage seems to have been caused by Tellarite particle canons. T'Pol tells Archer that the memory core of Andorian data recorder was damaged, but that she was able to reconstruct the last few seconds of sensory data that it recorded. She plays back a visual record of a Tellarite vessel firing. Archer orders Enterprise to Andoria at maximum warp speed.

In Gral's quarters, the ambassador denies that the Tellarites attacked the Andorian vessels. Archer offers the Kumari's sensor logs as proof, but Gral replies that they could have been fabricated. He tells Archer that he's not happy with so many Andorians on board and demands that the captain talk to his superiors at Starfleet so that they can dispatch another vessel to ferry the Andorian delegation to Babel. Archer reminds Gral that he's in command of the ship and that he doesn't take orders from the Tellarite ambassador. When Archer tells Gral that his intention is to transport the Andorians back to their homeworld, the Tellarite responds that his delegation will be arrested by the Andorians and held responsible for the incident. Archer replies that if the Tellarites are innocent, they should not be worried. As Gral growls after him, he exits the Tellarite's quarters.

In his quarters, Shran makes a toast to his ship. He tells Archer that he was the Kumari's commanding officer for twelve years. He regrets the deaths of his crew, which were extremely personal to him, and his relieved that Lieutenant Talas survived. He can't imagine the loss he would feel if she died. Archer is surprised to learn that Shran and Talas have developed intimate relations. Shran says that, in the past, he never would have considered a relationship with a member of his crew, but Talas made an overture. As a result, he could have either ordered her arrest, or mated with her. He chose the latter. Archer and Shran took about the Tellarites. Shran is convinced that they attacked the Kumari and the Andorian ambassador's vessel. T'Pol hails Archer and informs him that Enterprise has detected an Andorian ship on an intercept course.

On the bridge, Hoshi fails to contact the Andorian vessel, which soon attacks Enterprise. Travis reports that they have lost warp velocity and are now travelling at impulse speed. Shran attempts to tell the attacking vessel to cease hostilities, but with no success. Eventually, Archer orders Malcolm to open fire on the attacking ship. With a fluctuating power grid, the vessel retreats, but Malcolm is confused. He claims he didn't target their power grid, and can find no explanation for the damage the power grid apparently took.

In the briefing room, Archer asks Shran why the Andorians are attacking Enterprise when their government requested Starfleet's assistance. Ambassador Gral is convinced that the Kumari sent out a distress call to lure Enterprise into a trap, but Shran assures Archer that the Andorians do not wish to begin hostilities with Starfleet. Gral suspects that the Andorian Imperial Guard may have taken action without consulting their government first. Shran theorises that the vessel which attacked Enterprise may not have been Andorian in design. He noticed that its shield matrix had a completely different configuration to any of the other ships in their fleet. He argues that there have been several reports of Andorian ships going missing, and that the Tellarites could have commandeered such a vessel, enhancing its systems. Gral claims that Shran is suffering from paranoia. Eventually, their verbal arguing becomes physical and Archer and two MACOs have to hold them back from each other. The captain threatens that if they continue to fight, he'll have arrested them and held in the brig.

In the Tellarites' quarters, Gral tells the other members of his delegation that Archer claims to be impartial, but Gral believes the captain is more inclined to trust the Andorians. One of the other Tellarites comments that a MACO has been posted outside their quarters and that it's evidence to believe that they are being held prisoner. He offers the possibility that Archer is conspiring with the Andorians.

When Shran arrives on the bridge, Archer and T'Pol show him that the energy signatures of the vessel which destroyed the Kumari and the ship which attacked Enterprise are identical. Shran finds it hard to believe and still thinks that the Tellarites are behind the attacks. Trip contacts the bridge from engineering with the news that warp power is almost ready to go back online and that hull plating will be ready to use within an hour. Archer tells Shran that Enterprise has detected the attacking vessel's warp trail and his intention is to follow it. Shran argues that some of his crew require urgent medical attention from Andorian physicians, but Archer replies that if they continue to Andoria, the vessel will have disappeared again.

In the captain's mess, Archer and T'Pol eat alone. Archer thinks it may have been a mistake for Starfleet to involve itself in the continual feuding between Andoria and Tellar, a dispute which has lasted for more than a century. Perhaps Starfleet should have allowed the Vulcans to mediate the conference. T'Pol informs him that the Andorians still do not trust the Vulcans, even though relations have improved between them. Archer struggles to find much that the Andorians and Tellarites have in common, but T'Pol answers that similar statements have been made concerning humans and Vulcans. She tells Archer that she recieved a personal message from Koss on Vulcan. Their marriage has been officially dissolved. Archer says that he's sorry to hear that, but T'Pol replies that his apology is unneccessary. Malcolm Reed contacts Archer and tells the captain that the Andorian ship has been detected.

In space, a gigantic, black, alien vessel, which the Romulans call the Raptor, continues on its course through Andorian space.

In a large, darkened room, two Romulan officers detect a vessel approaching. One, Valdore, orders the other, Nijil, to display the approaching ship on a viewscreen. It's Enterprise, on an intercept course.

On the bridge of the Starfleet vessel, Archer and Malcolm Reed are puzzled. Enterprise has followed the warp trail to its present location. There is a ship on the main viewscreen, but it looks nothing like the Andorian ship that attacked earlier. Hoshi hails the vessel, but there is no response. When Archer asks what the spikes on the vessel are, T'Pol replies that they appear to be [[subspace transcievers. She determines that its hull is also lined with multispectral emitters, but she doesn't wish to guess their function. Archer orders Malcolm Reed to take a couple of MACOs aboard the alien ship. The security officer reports that life support is off-line, on board the vessel, so Archer orders him to take Trip too. Perhaps the engineer will be able to fix it.

The away team beam on board the alien ship and begin their work.

In the darkened room, Nijil reports that the propulsion matrix is still not operating. Valdore seems impatient when he asks how much longer it will take to be fixed, but all Nijil says is that it's being repaired. Valdore orders Nijil to prepare a core overload, he won't Starfleet to gain possession of the ship.

Tucker contacts Enterprise from the alien vessel. He reports that the away team hasn't met with any resistance, yet, and that he's found a computer interface. The only problem is that there's no power on the ship, the away team requires T'Pol's assistance to bring it on-line. She tells Trip to uplink his scanner.

Suddenly, the away team are thrown to the deck as the alien ship lunges forward and fires on Enterprise.

Archer calls for evasive maneuvers on the bridge of his ship as his crew attempt to retrieve the away team. T'Pol reports that the away team has reinforced the hull plating of the alien ship and that Enterprise is only able to transport one member of the away team at a time. Both of the MACOs are beamed off the ship before the primary phase coil is fused and the transporter goes off-line. The transporter will take several hours to repair and Enterprise is beginning to suffer heavy damage. Archer contacts the away team and explains the situation to Trip before Enterprise withdraws from the engagement at maximum warp.

The alien ship pursues Enterprise, as Malcolm Reed begins to run out of oxygen. Trip shares his supply of air with Reed, but Malcolm comments that Trip's supply won't last forever. The engineer tries to get life support on-line.

On the bridge of Enterprise, Travis struggles to outrun the alien vessel, but with the help of new injectors, he eventually manages it.

In the Andorian's quarters, Shran is still slightly suspicious of Gral. He wonders how Archer could be fooled by the Tellarite's deception. He tells Talas that he won't entrust the security of Andoria to the humans, even though Talas believes Shran has little choice but to allow Archer to deal with the situation. Shran promises never to trust the Tellarites again. He wants Talas to bypass the security protocols so that he can interrogate Gral.

On the alien vessel, Trip is struggling with the environment controls when Malcolm asks if life support is operational yet. Trip wonders if the ship has life support at all but Reed is sure that the bridge must have an environment, so both officers head to the bridge.

Nijil reports that Enterprise has moved out of sensor range of the Romulan ship. Valdore thinks that the humans must not be allowed to escape as too much has been revealed to them. Nijil argues that the Raptor is only a prototype which wasn't ready for combat. Valdore orders that the Romulans search for the humans.

"Captain's starlog, supplemental. Our battle damage has been repaired and we've resumed our search for the alien vessel. "

In Archer's quarters, T'Pol has determined that the alien vessel is neither Andorian or Tellarite in origin, but there's an extreme possibility that it's Romulan in design. When Archer asks why the Romulans would be in this area of space, T'Pol replies that they have been known to act against species which they view as a threat but the captain answers that he doesn't know anything about Starfleet, the Andorians or Tellarites having threatened the Romulans. He thinks it's possible that the Romulans feared an alliance between all three species, which is why they interfered. He tells her that the conference on Babel has been postponed for the foreseeable future. T'Pol reports that Enterprise is too far away from the alien ship to contact Trip.

On the Romulan vessel, Trip and Reed are having difficulty locating the bridge. Trip suggests following data conduits that run throughout the ship, he tells Malcolm that they probably lead to the bridge. They find a chemically-fuled maneuvering thruster, powered by liquid hydrogen and oxygen. Reed suggests that they refill their air tanks.

Outside the Andorian's quarters, Talas tries to seduce the MACO on duty there. When the officer tells to return to her quarters, Talas and the MACO fight. Talas eventually wins, knocking the MACO to the ground. She and Shran escape from their quarters.

Nijil detects a problem with one of the fuel tanks on board the Romulan ship. He's certain that it's not the result of another malfunction, but that the starboard transfer valve has manually been opened. Valdore orders Nijil to activate the Raptor's internal sensors. While Trip and Malcolm work on restoring their air supplies, they are detected by the ship's internal sensors. Valdore asks if the inertial stabilizers are off-line, to which Nijil replies affirmatively. Valdore orders the Pilot to begin evasive maneuvers, knocking Trip and Malcolm to the deck of the Romulan ship.

Talas and Shran make their way through Enterprise's corridors. After firing at a pair of MACOs, they enter the Tellarites' quarters. Talas assaults Gral's aide, Naarg, while Shran points a phaser rifle at the Tellarite ambassador.

On Enterprise's bridge, T'Pol and Hoshi have determined that the function of the emitters on the Romulan vessel's hull is to act as holographic projectors. The vessel is designed to use the emitters to mimic a wide variety of different ships. The vessel's disrupter uses triphasic emitters which can simulate the effects of different kinds of weapons. The ship is unable to mask its power signature, however. An officer hails the bridge, reporting weapons fire outside the Tellarites' quarters on G deck. Archer rushes off the bridge, calling for a team of MACOs to go to the Tellarites' quarters and for that deck to be sealed off.

In Gral's quarters, Shran insists that the Tellarites were the reason for the disappearance of several Andorian ships, but Gral argues otherwise.

Fighting Andorians on the way, Archer and several armed MACOs run towards the Tellarites' quarters. The captain enters and convinces Shran to give his weapon to Archer. Just as Shran does, though, Gral's aide fires at Talas. Archer returns fire at the Tellarite, who he kills. The captain sends for Doctor Phlox, but Talas' injuries are only superficial.

On the Romulan ship, Malcolm and Trip arrive at the bridge, only to find it deserted.

Nijil reports that the away team have entered the bridge of the Raptor, as Valdore gazes out a window on Romulus.


Background Information

Babel One refers to the first Babel Conference, held in 2154. There was at least one other conference held on the planet Babel, as it is featured in TOS: Journey to Babel.

Memorable Quotes

"I was told this ship was the pride of Starfleet. I find it is small, and unimpressive."
"Funny, I was about to say the same thing about you."
- Gral, Archer

Links and References

Guest Stars


Andorians; Babel; data recorder; Andorian Imperial Guard; inertial dampeners; Kumari class; Tellarites; primary phase coil; Romulans;

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