The Wolf Inside
Stardate: Unknown
Original Airdate: 14 Jan 2018

[Corridor]

(Darkness apart from showers of sparks falling onto the decking.)
HARRINGTON: Harrington to Engineering, I'm still working on that electrical malfunction on deck 12.
CREWMAN [OC]: Acknowledged. Deck 11, section 6 is reporting the same problem.
HARRINGTON: Think I've got that bulkhead operational.
CREWMAN [OC]: Understood. Make sure manual controls are routed to the emergency operational systems.
STAMETS [OC]: The forest.
HARRINGTON: Hold on a minute.
STAMETS [OC]: The forest. The forest. The forest.

[Brig]

(Stamets is cradling the body of Culber.)
STAMETS: The forest is dark, but I can see him through the trees. The trees. The trees. The trees.

[ISS Shenzhou Captain's quarters]

BURNHAM [OC]: I can't rest here. Not really. My eyes open and it's like waking from the worst nightmare I could imagine. Even the light is different. The cosmos has lost its brilliance. And everywhere I turn there's fear.
(Door opens. The mirror Saru enters.)
SARU: Captain. I have come to perform your daily ablutions.
BURNHAM: What is your name?
SARU: A... A slave has no name.
BURNHAM [OC]: It's been two days. But they're already inside my head. Every moment is a test. Can you bury your heart? Can you hide your decency? Can you continue to pretend to be one of them, even as, little by little, it kills the person you really are?

[ISS Shenzhou transporter room]

DETMER: You are all guilty of malicious thoughts against your Emperor. By order of the sovereign Terran Empire, I hereby sentence you to death.
TRANSPORTER CHIEF: Energising.
(The condemned are beamed into space.)
BURNHAM [OC] I've continued to study their ways, read all that I can. It's getting easier to pass.

[Captain's quarters]

(Tyler is to Burnham as Moreau was/will be to Kirk.)
BURNHAM: Which is exactly what I feared the most.
TYLER: You can never be one of them.
BURNHAM: We're all human here. We all start out with the same drives, the same needs. Maybe none of us, no matter what world we're from, really know what darkness is waiting inside. Thank you for this. You remind me of everything good. Of what I want my world to look like.
TYLER: My first year at the academy, I was terrified of open space. I could fly anything, no sweat, but I dreaded putting on that suit. Until I remembered the tether. They're mandatory the first few times a Cadet goes out in an EV and they link you back to what you know, what you love, help you stay strong, even as you head out into that terrifying abyss. And that's you. You're my tether. You bring me back. You did it before we were stranded in this place, and you're still doing it now.
(Door opens, Saru brings a tray.)
BURNHAM: We're done here. Go check on my prisoner.
(Tyler leaves.)
BURNHAM: This looks good, Saru. I'm gonna call you Saru, in honour of a respected friend.
SARU: Yes, Captain. (leaves)
COMPUTER Incoming transmission from the ISS Discovery. Captain Tilly, Sylvia.
(Burnham dresses and takes something from under her mattress.)
BURNHAM: Computer, accept transmission.
TILLY [hologram]: Is this a secure channel?
BURNHAM: Low band, zero traffic. I'm alone, Tilly.
TILLY [hologram]: I have Mister Saru. Hang in there, friend.
SARU [hologram]: Is your status unchanged?
BURNHAM: Yes, sir. I've accessed the classified files, but the data's too massive to decipher from here. The Terran firewall is impenetrable. I'm unable to transmit intel off-ship without being detected.
SARU [hologram]: An oppressive regime is, by nature, a fearful regime, but I'm afraid you must devise a workaround. The data concerning the USS Defiant's entry into this realm is our last best hope at forming our own plan of escape.
BURNHAM: So I take it Lieutenant Stamets' condition hasn't improved?
SARU [hologram]: I'm afraid not.
BURNHAM: I will find a way.
SARU [hologram]: Oh, er, one last question, immaterial to the mission. My kind are few in our universe. I had hoped... Have you encountered any Kelpiens onboard?
BURNHAM: No, I haven't, Saru. I'm sorry.
SARU [hologram]: Oh, not at all. It was merely a personal curiosity. Stay safe, Michael, and be wary.

[Discovery sick bay]

TILLY: Culber was her friend and colleague. She deserves to know the truth.
SARU: The news that we are dealing with an intra-vessel homicide would distract Burnham from her vital mission. The circumstances surrounding Doctor Culber's death are difficult to process, even for me.
TILLY: I hate seeing him like this.
(Stamets is in restraints on a biobed.)
SARU: If Lieutenant Stamets killed Culber, he may be a danger to all of us.
TILLY: He only escaped because the containment field was disabled. Culber probably lowered it. Who could stand to see the person they love in a cage?
SARU: Perhaps that was his fatal error.
TILLY: Stamets didn't kill anyone.
SARU: Are you suggesting there's a murderer running free on our ship?
TILLY: No, I'm saying that this... this is not Paul Stamets. I've analysed the scans of his neurological function. The hyperactivity of the white matter in his brain has increased at an alarming rate. It's redirected blood flow almost exclusively to the frontopolar cortex.
SARU: Rendering all other segments of the brain essentially nonfunctional.
TILLY: This wasn't a murder. This was an unfortunate consequence of an addled mind trying to reach beyond a cloud of confusion. We are losing him, Commander, and fast.
SARU: The Lieutenant's health is in the hands of our medical officers.
TILLY: Medicine isn't working. This is a spore issue, which means no one is more qualified to treat him than I am. Please? Let me bring him back.

[ISS Shenzhou bridge]

JANUZZI: Incoming hail. Captain Maddox of the Imperial Flagship seeks an audience.
BURNHAM: Acknowledge.
MADDOX [hologram]: Michael Burnham in the flesh. Then it's true. The Emperor will be pleased.
BURNHAM: Not as pleased as I am to have reclaimed what's mine.
MADDOX [hologram]: I'm sure. The Emperor has a mission. Your first dip back into the fray.
BURNHAM: I'm more than up for the challenge.
MADDOX [hologram]: Imperial intelligence has uncovered the location of the Fire Wolf.
BURNHAM: The Klingon leader of the resistance.
MADDOX [hologram]: The one who's been marching his witless alien insurgents to their inevitable deaths. His base is located on Harlak. I'm sending you the coordinates now. Your mission is simple.
BURNHAM: Terran General Order Four. Any exotic species deemed a threat to the Imperial Supremacy will be extinguished without prejudice.
MADDOX [hologram]: Kill them all. The Emperor commands it.
(Communication ends.)
DETMER: Tactical, prep photon torpedoes for launch.
BURNHAM: Do not anticipate me, Number One.
DETMER: Captain, we have our orders.
BURNHAM: No. I have my orders. You've all grown soft in my absence. You think it was easy tracking Lorca, bringing him back here alive? We could kill the Fire Wolf and his followers, and lay waste to their operation from above. Or we could get our hands dirty. Prep a landing party. I'll infiltrate the rebel base myself. And return with the intel we need to bury the resistance once and for all.

[Brig]

(Out of his agoniser booth.)
LORCA: You have to do it. Give the order. You have to wipe them out.
BURNHAM: But I can't send hundreds of rebels to their death to save myself.
LORCA: What about your crew, the Federation, our universe, being massacred by Klingons. Sometimes the end justifies terrible means.
BURNHAM: Permission to speak freely, sir? I fear that your suffering has influenced your judgment. I will find a way to get what we need to Discovery, but in the meantime, lives are hanging on my command here and at home. And this rebellion against the Terrans? It's an unshakeable union of species. Klingons, Vulcans, Andorians, Tellarites. It's the closest to a Federation this universe may ever see.
LORCA: And your point?
BURNHAM: My point is that a Klingon leads the alliance. A Klingon. They rally behind him. If we can walk away from this with the means to successfully negotiate with the Klingon race, that's real hope for finding peace at home. Please, sir. I no longer have my pips, but I'm still Starfleet. Don't force me to slaughter this coalition of hope.
LORCA: Maybe you're right. Maybe I'm not seeing things clearly. All right, no landing party. You insist that you and Tyler beam down alone. I can't risk your true agenda being exposed. Hurry back, please.

[Engineering]

(Stamets is in the spore chamber, hooked up to the computer.)
TILLY: He called me Captain. I didn't think much of it at first, save that it had a pretty sweet ring to it. Then we came here, into this universe, where I am Captain.
SARU: You hypothesised that Mister Stamets began receiving glimpses of this alternate plane that preceded our physical arrival.
TILLY: Yes. This scan represents the tardigrade's neural activity when he first came to us. Do you see this?
SARU: Micro patterns in the frontopolar cortex. Some sort of undetermined and seemingly ancillary activity.
TILLY: Neurons firing nowhere, or so we thought at the time. This is Stamets today. The micro patterns are a symptom of mycelial travel, but what we hadn't considered then was that they could also be a neuronal link. A kind of internal transdimensional portal to this universe. Or, theoretically, any dimension accessible via the network.
SARU: And now that segment of the brain is consuming all of the organ's resources to keep the portal open.
TILLY: We need to restore function to the entire brain, like this. And what organism can symbiotically contribute to the health of its host? Spores. Stamets is inside the network. In order to reclaim his lost neural function, we need to put the network inside him.
SARU: Then proceed, cadet.

[ISS Shenzhou corridor]

TYLER: Think about this. You're gonna get yourself killed.
BURNHAM: Better dead than one of them.
(Tyler's hand is trembling. She squeezes it briefly.)
BURNHAM: Just follow my lead.

[Transporter room]

BURNHAM: Energise.

[Planet surface]

BURNHAM: The rebel encampment is 500 metres from this point.
TYLER: Why can't we see anything?
BURNHAM: Because they don't want you to.
(An explosion behind them. And another, and another. They're surrounded. Tyler raises his phaser.)
BURNHAM: No, no, no. To them, we're the enemy. If we fire back, it confirms that.
TYLER: They have us pinned down.
BURNHAM: I have a plan, Tyler. Hand me your phaser.
(She walks forward, puts both weapons on the ground.)
BURNHAM: I seek an audience with the one you call the Fire Wolf. We come in peace, against the orders of our Emperor. We come to deliver a message. A warning.
SHUKAR: (Andorian) With me.
(They are marched on, then the base is revealed.)
BURNHAM: Active camouflage. This is how the Fire Wolf kept the base secret for nearly two years.

[Tent]

BURNHAM: You're the Fire Wolf.
VOQ: We finally meet. I am Voq, son of none. My spies have told me you were dead. I must admit, we rejoiced at this news.
(Tyler is backing away.)
BURNHAM: The old Michael Burnham is dead. I'm the new Michael Burnham, the one who's betraying her kind, risking her life to save you.
VOQ: The new Michael Burnham. Are you not the Butcher of the Binary Stars?
BURNHAM: There are two sides to every battle.
VOQ: With a single savage order you executed thousands of my kind, establishing yourself as the figurehead of Terran cruelty. Do you deny those actions?
BURNHAM: I cannot. But it is not who I want to be. Not anymore.
VOQ: Then I am happy to relieve you of your
BURNHAM: I understand your urge to fight. The only way that you can see me, determine my true intentions. But I do swear to you, every moment that we square off wastes precious time. The Emperor has discovered your location. I had orders to enter Harlak's orbit and destroy your base.
VOQ: Try it. The resistance will fight to the death.
BURNHAM: I think we can help each other. I want something from you, and in return I will save your followers and ensure the longevity of your resistance.
VOQ: Your Emperor would never sanction such an act of mercy.
BURNHAM: No. But my Emperor will be satisfied when I strafe Harlak with photon torpedoes following the safe evacuation of your people.
VOQ: I cannot place their lives in human hands. Not without absolute certainty. Bring out the Prophet.
(Vulcan with a goatee beard.)
VOQ: Master Sarek sees all. His wisdom pierces minds. If you truly come in peace, he will find it in your heart.
SAREK: My mind to your mind. My thoughts to your thoughts.
SAREK [memory]: My mind to your mind. My thoughts to your thoughts.
AMANDA [memory]: You've proven that you're as accomplished as any Vulcan, which is gonna serve you well. As long as you never forget that you're human, too. JUDGE [memory] To the charge of mutiny, how do you plead?
BURNHAM [memory]: Guilty.
(The mind meld ends.) SAREK How can it be?
VOQ: Sarek, what do you see?
SAREK: I see a world bursting with potential, a child molded by wisdom, and a seemingly impossible depth of human compassion. She means us no harm.
VOQ: If the Prophet deems your motives to be pure, then even I am not headstrong enough to argue. Prepare to evacuate. Leave no trace for prying Terran eyes.
BURNHAM: Wait. I told you I wanted something in return.
VOQ: And you have earned that right.
BURNHAM: You lead this group of vastly different species. A Klingon, whose pride of honour is eternally fused with his identity as a warrior, stands side by side with a Vulcan, who cannot possibly comprehend his need for aggressive emotional expression. And a willful Andorian looks to you not with hostility, but with allegiance. I need to know how. How have you come to compromise and embrace each other?
VOQ: The light of Kahless guides me in all things.
(Tyler has flashbacks.)
T'KUVMA [memory]: Kahless. Together under one creed.
BURNHAM: But the light of Kahless demands that you honour the ways of your race, yet here you are speaking in a foreign language, placing your faith in the cultural customs of others.
VOQ: I am here. I have survived only on the shoulders of my comrades.
T'KUVMA [memory]: Our purity is a threat to them. They wish to drag us into the muck where humans, Vulcans, Tellarites and filthy Andorians mix.
VOQ: The humans seek Klingon extinction. They have denied us our rituals, our language. That is why I fight.
BURNHAM: The Terrans will not stop until all of their enemies are destroyed.
VOQ: And a Terran enemy is a Klingon friend.
BURNHAM: So you are united by the common adversary, but does that union not contradict your drive to defend the Klingon honour at all costs?
VOQ: Klingons stand together, and strong. It is only with our own Houses in order that we can begin to invite others in.
T'KUVMA [memory]: My House is bonded by a single doctrine. Remain Klingon.
TYLER: (in Klingonaase) Remain Klingon or die!
(Tyler grabs a bat'leth, Voq a dagger, and they fight.)
BURNHAM: Tyler, no! Tyler, stop!
VOQ: Who are you? How do you speak our forgotten tongue?
(Tyler starts punching Voq in the face.)
BURNHAM: No. No.
(Now the headbutts. Voq gets the upper hand, and a blade to Tyler's throat, but he does not kill him.)
VOQ: So the darkness of a Terran soul can now suppress a Vulcan mind-meld?
BURNHAM: No. My guard has attacked you against my orders.
VOQ: You dishonour yourselves, even in death.
BURNHAM: No!
SAREK: Wait. I told you Captain Burnham meant us no harm. I stand by that assessment.
SHUKAR: Impossible. Her man tried to assassinate the Fire Wolf.
SAREK: I do not claim to understand the logic behind his motives, but hers are pure. She is an outsider. Like us, she seeks escape from this world, to reclaim hope, equality, peace. It is only in sparing her life that we, too, will see the fight of another day.
VOQ: Tell me what needs to be done, then be gone.
BURNHAM: You have one hour to flee with your lives. My ship waits in Harlak's orbit. But I do need to prove that my mission here was successful.
VOQ: Shukar.
(The Andorian hands over a data crystal.)
SHUKAR: The location of each of the rebel listening stations within this quadrant. By the time your crew have deciphered our code, we will have rendered the intel inactionable.
(Voq helps Tyler to his feet. Their phasers are returned.)
BURNHAM: Thank you for your wisdom.
VOQ: I will thank you only after we reach safety.

[Outside the tent]

BURNHAM: Burnham to Shenzhou. Two to transport.

[Transporter room]

BURNHAM: Have it analysed immediately. It contains the data we need to bring the rebellion to its knees. Tell Tactical now is the time to prep those torpedoes, but I'll give the order to fire weapons at my discretion.
DETMER: My apologies, Captain.
BURNHAM: I'll be in quarters. Tyler, you're with me.

[Discovery Engineering]

TILLY: The laser photon emissions are comprised entirely of exotic matter found in the mycelial plane. And when that matter integrates with Stamets' own neural materials, it should restore his cognitive function.
SARU: A scientist saved by his own specimens.
TILLY: The veins and muscles of the universe. Fungi are the only organism with the biological aptitude to link death with life.
SARU: His heart rate is accelerating.
TILLY: That is, er, an expected side effect. That big brain of his is doing some heavy lifting. Okay, there. The neural patterns in the temporal lobe are returning to baseline. It's... it's working.
SARU: Remarkable. Your comprehension of the astromycology behind Mister Stamets' findings is... Well, I'm impressed.
TILLY: Enough that you'll recommend me for the Command training programme?
SARU: Enough that if we ever find our way back to a universe that has a Command training programme, I will consider it. (alarm beeps) Heart rate is dropping again. He can't sustain this level of exertion.
TILLY: We're nearly there. Come on, Stamets. Come on, come on, come on. Redirecting the brain's resources has affected the autonomic nervous system functions.
SARU: This is your Captain. We need emergency medical assistance in Engineering.
TILLY: No, no, no. I'm administering something to restart his heart. If we disengage him from the network now, we will lose him altogether.
(Patient 312132 is flatlining.)
SARU: We already have.
MEDIC: Please stand back.
TILLY: Please, Saru. Order them to stand down.
SARU: Computer, request emergency reaction cube access.
COMPUTER: Access granted.
MEDIC 2: Clear. Again. And again.
(No heartbeat. Tilly cries.)

[ISS Shenzhou Captain's quarters]

BURNHAM: Tell me the truth, right now. What is happening to you?
TYLER: Michael, please.
BURNHAM: I have had your back. I've saved your life. I've loved you. You didn't just jeopardise me, you jeopardised our mission. Our entire crew back on Discovery.
TYLER: The captain warned us that we'd do things out of our nature to survive.
BURNHAM: No! We were surviving. It was under control. And this erratic behaviour, it's not because of this new universe. I saw it onboard the Klingon flagship.
TYLER: Stop. Please, please stop.
BURNHAM: In the worker bee, when you could barely complete a simple mission, you said I was your tether. Ash, I need one, too. What are you hiding from me?
(Memory of being with L'Rell.)
TYLER: I feel something for her. L'Rell. A reverence, an allegiance, maybe an affection. And when she speaks, I'm forced to listen. And her words, they tell me who I am.
L'RELL [memory]: Whom do we seek?
TYLER [memory]: Kahless.
BURNHAM: She brainwashed you. She wanted a spy aboard Discovery.
TYLER: More than that. More than just mind games. More than torture!
CULBER [memory]: There are masses of scar tissue surrounding all of your organs. They opened up your limbs. As far as I'm concerned, you're not you.
(Tyler remembers killing Culber.)
TYLER: They reduced a Klingon body to human. I don't... I don't think I'm Ash Tyler, Starfleet Lieutenant. Not really. Not anymore.
BURNHAM: You're not making sense.
TYLER: I feel him inside me. His thoughts, his pain, his rage.
BURNHAM: Who? Who? Who?
TYLER: I tried to shut her out when L'Rell spoke the call. I resisted by thinking of you, the one I want to be human for. The one I love. I tried, Michael. [GASPING] But then I saw him, face to face, down on that planet, and I couldn't fight it anymore. I remember now. I remember it all. We needed to infiltrate your ship, learn your secrets. You were willing to betray your Captain to protect your people. I sacrificed my body and mind to protect mine. I have the human's face, but inside I remain Klingon.
BURNHAM: Klingon?
TYLER: I remain Voq, Son of none. The torchbearer.
BURNHAM: No. You're Ash Tyler. We're gonna get back to Discovery and sit with Doctor Culber, and he's gonna...
TYLER: Doctor Culber saw past this feeble body into the heart and mind of a warrior, which is why I killed him.
BURNHAM: What?
TYLER: A necessary casualty.
BURNHAM: I need to contact Saru. (grabs phaser) I don't want to use this. I will.
TYLER: You. You killed my lord.
BURNHAM: Your lord?
TYLE: T'Kuvma was a beacon, a messiah to unite us, deliver our race to dominance over a submissive galaxy. I bet the humans hail your bravery. Did they praise you after you martyred his name?
BURNHAM: You've lost your mind.
TYLER: And you fought like a coward. Scratched at my eyes. But you could not blind me to the truth.
BURNHAM: I didn't testify to that. It's you. You were there on that bridge. I remember.
TYLER: I failed T'Kuvma that day.
(He disarms her and grabs her by the throat.)
TYLER: I won't fail him again.
(She reaches for a neck pinch but he grabs her hand.)
TYLER: (in Klingonaase) I end you in T'Kuvma's name.
(Then mirror Saru grabs Tyler and throws him across the room.)
SARU: He made an attempt on the Captain's life.
(A security guard tasers Tyler and he is dragged away.)

[Outside Captain's quarters]

DETMER: Captain.
BURNHAM: I'm fine.
DETMER: Understood. I'll alert the transporter room. Officer Tyler's swift execution will send a valuable message to the crew. I know that you valued his service, but Terran Law is binding.
BURNHAM: Of course. So ordered, Number One.

[Discovery Engineering]

TILLY: I'm so sorry. I hope wherever you are he's with you.
(The corpse twitches, and a computer beeps. Tilly checks the brain scan.

[Spore forest]

M-STAMETS: Hello, Paul. Ready to get to work? I so hoped you would find your way.
(Stamets smiles at the image of his mirror universe equivalent.)

[ISS Shenzhou Transporter room]

DETMER: Officer Ash Tyler, you are guilty of the attempted murder of an Imperial Captain. By order of the sovereign Terran Empire, I hereby sentence you to death. Your prisoner, Captain.
BURNHAM: Do you have anything to say for yourself?
TYLER: (in Klingonaase) Kahless, give me light to see forever.
(Burnham punches him in the stomach. Detmer nods to the Transporter Chief.)
BURNHAM: Wait. This one dies by my own hand.
(She beams Tyler away.)
BURNHAM: Have Lorca delivered to my Ready room. I'd like to soothe the blow of Mister Tyler's betrayal with a private interrogation.

[Discovery transporter room]

(Tyler is beamed aboard just before his thirty seconds to survive in space are up.)
TYLER: She should have let me die with honour.
SARU: No. We are stranded in a cruel, anarchic world, but we are still Starfleet, and we still live and die by Federation law, no matter how heinous your crimes. And if she had, Burnham's mission aboard the Shenzhou would remain incomplete.
(Saru takes a 3 1/2 inch floppy disc from Tyler's uniform.)
SARU: The Terran Empire's classified data on the USS Defiant. Our key to finding a way home. Lieutenant Ash Tyler, as acting captain of the USS Discovery, I hereby remand you to the brig to await a tribunal.

[ISS Shenzhou Ready room]

BURNHAM: We need to leave this place.
LORCA: Not yet. In time.
BURNHAM: But my mission was successful.
LORCA: And what if Commander Saru can't isolate the data? What if the route the Defiant took is not available to us? Where would we run to if we were exposed before the entire Terran fleet? Look, I know this is hard for you. I know you'd come to care for Tyler.
BURNHAM: I don't think I can survive this place alone.
LORCA: You're not alone, Michael. We will survive this place together.
DETMER [OC]: Captain, we're detecting a massive power signature within orbit. It seems another vessel is targeting Harlak.
BURNHAM: The rebels haven't completed their evacuation.

[Bridge]

BURNHAM: Grab Lorca.
CREWMAN: Aye, Captain.
BURNHAM: Who is it? Why can't we see them? Hail the commanding officer. Tell them to retreat. Now!
(A barrage of photon torpedoes heads to the planet.)
JANUZZI: Incoming transmission. It's the Emperor.
GEORGIOU [hologram]: Captain Michael Burnham. You've been away too long, though I can't say the same for your prisoner. I do not appreciate having to warp my way across the quadrant to clean up your untended mess. When I give an order, I do not expect to be ignored. Don't you bow before your Emperor?
(Burnham salutes and bows deep. Lorca gives a wry little smile.)

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