Written by Michael Medlock and Rene Echevarria
Directed by LeVar Burton
Season 6, Episode 24
Production episode 40276-250
Original air date: May 24, 1993
Captain’s Log: The Enterprise is in orbit of Nervala IV, which is surrounded by a distortion field that inhibits transport, communications, sensors, and just about everything else. Every eight years, three transport windows open up. Some data was left behind eight years ago, and the Enterprise is going to retrieve it. One of the people on the last mission to Nervala was Lieutenant William Riker of the U.S.S. Potemkin.
Commander Riker is leading a jazz quartet for a concert in Ten-Forward. When he asks for requests, Troi asks for “Nightbird,” a song Riker has been trying to master the solo of for ten years. Reluctantly, Riker goes ahead and starts the song, but he is interrupted by Data—the window has opened up sooner than expected. Riker beams down along with Data, Worf, and an engineer. To Riker’s surprise, the place looks different, even though nobody could have been here. Worf theorizes that a ship may have gotten caught in the distortion field and crashed.