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(written from a Production point of view)
The battle on Rigel VII!
Captain Christopher Pike, Yeoman Dermot Cusack, and Chief Medical Officer Phillip Boyce stand on a balcony observing the Rigellian Festival of Light commenting on its immense scale and realizing the fact that they are the first off-worlders in a thousand years to witness it and live to tell. The citizens of Rigel IV have instituted reforms moving them away from isolationism.
Pike asks Cusack if all is prepared for a ceremony finalizing the entry of Rigel IV to the Federation, to which Cusask answers in the affirmative. Rigellian Minister Etashnan appears and Pike introduces him to Dr. Boyce. The Minister explains that the Festival is merely for show and that since their contact with the Federation they have sought to purge their societal barbaric traits Talza, the minister's aide, interrupts explaining the role of the Kaylar in the martial society of Rigel IV. Pike comments on the reality of their weapons, however Talza explains that this is the last festival in which the specially bred Kaylar warriors will participate.
Talza offers to give Pike a tour of the fortress where the ceremony is to take place, an action which Dr. Boyce and Cusack agree will benefit Pike. Pike agrees and Cusack goes about seeing to shore leave for the crew.
On the Enterprise, Number One and Spock begin beaming down the crew for shore leave – Mohindas and Nano are among the selected, Tyler is not. Spock wishes to remain aboard, but Number One suggests the ship can function without him. Spock puzzles at the comment, to which Nano and Mohindas attempt to explain that Number One was merely "teasing" him.
Meanwhile, Talza and Pike discuss the enormity of the situation, Tazla making some comments about the cultural importance the Kaylar and how far the society had come. Pike compares the situation to Human history which he describes as having to put aside "warlike" habits. They then arrive at the Zemtar fortress.
Talza explains that the fortress was the traditional barracks of the Kaylar and that the ceremony held there would be symbolic in showing the rejection of barbarism. As they discuss this, a shadowy figures makes its way behind them in the darkness.
In another part of the settlement, Yeoman Cusack mixes a drink he calls the "Kaylar Kalamity." Spock misinterprets one of Cusack's vernacular expressions, to which Cusack responds with only an encouragement for Spock to join in the merrymaking. Carlotti notices that Dr. Boyce is not engaged in party and seeks him out. She finds him alone on the balcony seemingly resisting internal voices. Boyce tells her that he is just "getting fresh air" and plays it off commenting they join the festivities before Cusack consumes all the spirits.
At the fortress, Pike gets impatient that the tour is taking longer than he anticipated and attempts to contact Cusack, only to discover that his communicator is not working. A Kaylar warrior then appears in an attack stance.
Number One and Engineer Grace stand in Observation Lounge discussing the emptiness of the ship. Grace finds the silence "uneasy." Tyler then reports that all communications seems to be jammed and that even transporter beams cannot get through. Number One heads to the bridge to check on the situation.
Back on Rigel IV the party continues as Cusack notices that his communicator is not functioning. The Kaylar warriors in the bar suddenly place their drinks down on the bar as Mohindas notices that her communicator too is dead. Unnoticed by the Enterprise crew, the Kaylar warriors reach for their weapons. When a crewman amicably asks one of the warriors as to the communicator's lack of function he is slashed by a bladed weapon. To the horror of all, the tavern erupts into a fighting free for all with the Kaylars viciously attacking Enterprise crewmen.
Nano manages to hold off a few with his pyrotechnics and Spock uses his superior strength to do the same, but the group is overwhelmed and Cusack orders a withdrawal.
Pike, still at the fortress, has troubles of his own fighting off the Kaylar. He orders Talza to run away, she does so a little too obligingly.
The now injured crewmen on the surface take refuge in a cellar while the Kaylar search the streets for them. Two of them had been killed in the attack and were left in the tavern, Cusack speculates that it is the Rigellians that are blocking the frequencies. Nano reports that he has recalibrated his communicator to home in on the source of the disruption, but that its range is severely limited. Cusack elects to leave Dr. Boyce in charge and attempt to deal with the jamming.
Nano's communicator leads Cusack to the Rigellian parliament building where he locates the device and disables it just as Pike, in the Zemtar fortress, defeats the Kaylar. Just as Cusack contacts the Enterprise, he is stabbed in the back by Talza. Pike, pinned by the corpse of the Kaylar he has impaled on a lance, notices a group of Kaylar entering the fortress. The warriors are felled by energy beams in a timely fashion by Tyler and a security team from Enterprise.
The entire attack had been a "set up" by Rigellian extremist traditionalists in league with the Kaylar. The result was two dead and seven wounded. Rigel's petition to the Federation will be denied.
As a wounded Pike enters the parliamentary chambers he is warned off by Number One, but is too late. Dr. Boyce indicates that there was nothing more he could do. Cusack was dead. Talza spouts off a rant, to which Pike orders her removed. Pike falls to his knees and holds his head, distraught over Cusack's death.
- The landing on the planet is mentioned in TOS: "The Cage".
- The casualties taken in this issue, 3 dead and 7 wounded, were mentioned in a discussion between Dr. Boyce and Pike in TOS: "The Cage". Additionally, the scene of Talza and Pike was originally seen as a Talosian illusion in that episode with Vina in the roll of Talza's character.
- Based on Star Trek created by Gene Roddenberry
- Canon characters listed below are linked to the main article about them. Non-canon characters are not linked, but those that recurred, appearing or being mentioned in more than one story, are defined further in Early Voyages characters.
- Christopher Pike
- Enterprise captain.
- Number One
- Enterprise exec.
- Enterprise science officer.
- Philip Boyce
- Enterprise CMO.
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