Borg Evelter, planetary weapons officer, marched into the Generatrix’s cafeteria, where Commander Grayson had summoned him. There, waiting near the end of the large room where the doors led deeper into the defense complex, he met the Voyager’s EMH, under guard of an unfamiliar-looking Borg drone.
Curious, Evelter announced, "I don’t recognize this sentry."
"My assignment is the Grand Hall," Tom offered, hoping desperately that his ruse would work. It had delivered them thus far, and failure – as Captain Janeway had lain out – was not an option. "I serve as guard to the chambers for the ambassador of the Voyager-Lemm."
His eyepiece twirling, Evelter gave no indication of disbelief or acceptance.
"Ambassador Janeway explained to His Highness that this Voyager-Lemm possesses extensive knowledge on the mechanics of Twelfth Power Energy conversion," Paris explained.
"Curious," Grayson said. "We are not aware that the Federation, in its present incarnation, has mastered the application of Twelfth Power Energy."
"Apparently, the Federation has encountered the energy source before."
Still, the planetary weapons officer maintained his stoic appearance.
"The One requires that this Voyager-Lemm be assigned to the Pulse Cannon Targeting Systems," Tom concluded, nodding sideways at the Doctor.
"Explain," Evelter stated, finally breaking his silence.
He swallowed hard. "His Highness has discovered that this Voyager-Lemm has a vast repository of knowledge with weapon system technologies," the disguised Voyager crewmember concocted on the spot, hoping such an explanation would achieve the goal he sought – granting them access to the Pulse Cannon Command Center. "Specifically," he continued, "this Voyager-Lemm has demonstrated an advanced understanding of sensor-indicative targeting systems. As the One is currently engaging a fleet of Borg Cubes, he found it relevant for this Lemm – one uniquely aware of Voyager’s defensive capabilities – to be assigned to the Pulse Cannon immediately."
Slowly, the weapons officer studied Tom and the doctor.
Ever the gambler, Lieutenant Paris went for broke. "You will comply, or you will suffer extermination."
After several protracted seconds, Evelter finally conceded.
Struggling to contain any open display of emotion, Tom stepped aggressively toward Evelter. He realized that his explanation might’ve been insufficient, and a corrective action was required. "Your delay in processing His Highness’s request expeditiously will be noted upon my return to the Grand Hall."
Suddenly, Evelter’s single human eye twitched.
Momentarily, he glanced at the floor, seemingly embarrassed.
"That will not be necessary," he finally stated, reaching out and taking the Doctor by the arm.
"As assigned to the Quorum, I determine what is relevant," Tom insisted, now interested in seeing how far he could push his luck with these drones.
"Understood," Grayson announced firmly, "and agreed."
Pointing to the Doctor – whose expression only indicated that, somewhere, sometime, there was a nasty hypospray waiting for the lieutenant when he least expected it – Tom quickly added, "I have been ordered by His Highness to accompany this Lemm to ensure that he reaches the Command Center."
"On what grounds?" Evelter asked.
"He is industrious," the Voyager helmsman explained. "He has attempted escape on multiple occasions. In these attempts, he has successfully disabled several of our drones. He is considered highly dangerous."
Together, Evelter and Grayson glared at the Doctor.
Showing his defiance, the Doctor … gritted his teeth.
"His Highness is graciously providing this Lemm with one final chance to serve the Foundation," Tom concluded. "Should he fail to perform adequately on this assignment, I have been instructed to terminate his lifesigns immediately."
With a single, curt nod, Evelter replied, "Understood. I shall provide escort to the Pulse Cannon, as an additional precautionary measure."
"Agreed," Tom droned.
As they started down the hallway that would lead to their final destination, the Doctor leaned into his shipmate, whispering, "You know, I might not have a name, but referring to me as the Doctor instead of as a Lemm would suffice!"