In 2369, Hon-Tihl was the sole survivor of the Toh'Kaht's bio-survey to the Gamma Quadrant. He oversaw the retrieval of strange energy spheres from a race called the Saltah'na which appeared to be a sort of telepathic archive. Affected by them, he became involved in a power struggle on the ship when the captain became insane and executed two crew members under suspicion of mutiny. The chief medical officer, Kee-Bhor, expressed his concerns about the influence of the spheres on the crew, but Hon-Tihl slit his throat, believing he was a spy for the captain. Later, there was a battle for control over the ship with the conflict spreading to several decks. Hon-Tihl belonged to the faction which opposed the captain. Even though the ship's armory was captured by Tel-Peh, the first officer was confident he could gain control of the ship. By this point, Hon-Tihl was experiencing weakness from his wounds.
A little later, believing he would rather not become a prisoner to the captain, he planned the destruction of the ship, which would kill the captain, by planting a thalmerite device on a beam near the reactor core. He began to suspect that the medical officer was right in that the crew was being influenced by the spheres. As the ship exited the Bajoran wormhole and approached Deep Space 9, he beamed himself aboard, with the energy spheres, the station just before his device exploded, resulting in the destruction of the Toh'Kaht. He, however, died on the transporter pad.
The crew of Deep Space 9 investigated Hon-Tihl's mission logs in order to determine the fate of the Toh'Kaht as they themselves were affected by the spheres. An autopsy of Hon-Tihl by Julian Bashir revealed that the membrane permeability of the columnar cells in his brain stem was off. Though there could be numerous explanations for this, the most likely explanation was that it had something to do with telepathy. The results of the autopsy and Hon-Tihl's mission journal eventually led to an explanation of what happened on the Toh'Kaht and gave Odo the information he needed for saving the affected officers. (DS9: "Dramatis Personae")