By David Niall Wilson
While the sensors of the U.S.S. Voyager notice ample plants on an unexplored planet, Captain Janeway leads an Away staff looking for clean meals offers. They locate lavish gardens inhabited via an enigmatic alien race that holds the gardens sacred. The fragrent blossoms are attractive, attractive -- and much extra risky than they seem. one after the other, the Away crew starts to fall into deep comas from which they can not be revived. Unwilling to unfold the sickness to Voyager, the Away staff is trapped on this planet until eventually a therapy are available, yet their research is perceived as desecration through the religious worshippers of the gardens. Pursued via a fanactical mob, slowly succumbing to the insidious impact of the blossoms, Janeway faces both a violent loss of life -- or an unending sleep.
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No way of knowing if they might bite, sting, or worse, and alien toxins could prove extremely dangerous, particularly when the only medical officer available was a hologram and confined to the ship. Just one more handicap the universe had dealt her when she was pulled from her own quadrant-another bit of responsibility to rest on her shoulders. The insects went their way, and she hers, and if it hadn't been for the sudden cries of dismay from up ahead of her, she could have walked among them, watching them work, for hours.
As they moved in deeper, Janeway lost herself in the beauty of the place. Neelix was busying the others with the gathering of the supplies he needed, and Tuvok, in his usual fashion, was scanning anything and everything in search of hidden dangers or clues to those who inhabited the place. He took his position as security officer seriously, and he was very good at it. His vigilance gave Janeway an opportunity to savor the abundant life that surrounded them, to take in the fresh air and the moist scents of plant life and rich earth.
There was a moment's silence, then Neelix's cheerful voice floated out from the computer's speakers. "But Captain, I have this wonderful N'llanthyan stew on the stove! The leaves are of a delicate nature; they must be stirred at precise intervals to insure there is no loss of flavor. " Janeway stormed off the bridge and into the lift, her face a mask of stoic perseverance. Neelix was an invaluable asset to her crew under their present circumstances, but at times it was difficult to remind herself of this.