(written from a Production point of view)
Two of the most powerful forces in the galaxy are about to collide.
- From the book jacket
- When two powerful rival families of the spacefaring merchant race called the Tizarin are to be joined through marriage, the USS Enterprise-D is chosen as the site for the wedding. Though Captain Picard is pleased by the happy duty, his pleasure is cut short by the arrival of the Federation delegate from Betazed: Lwaxana Troi – the mother of ship's counselor, Deanna Troi.
- Despite Lwaxana Troi's romantic overtures toward the captain, the celebration seems to go smoothly until the situation is further complicated by the arrival of the notorious and all powerful being called Q – who has come to examine and challenge the human concept of love. Suddenly, the festivities are in turmoil, the powerful Tizarin families are on the verge of war, and Lwaxana Troi is determined to teach Q a lesson in love that he will never forget...
"Why are you saddling yourself with this artificial bereavement? It's a pointless tradition."
"My dear, anyone can uphold traditions that have meaning. Upholding the pointless traditions - that, Deanna, takes style."
- - Deanna Troi and Lwaxana Troi
"Oh, don't call me "ma'am." "Ma'am" makes me feel old. Do you think I'm old?"
"Yes. In comparison with the average Betazoid lifespan, you are-"
- - Lwaxana Troi, Data and Picard (cutting in)
"You are a Tzarin, of the House of Shinbun?"
"I am Data. Of the Enterprise."
- - Data, mistaken for a Tzarin
"Permission to bounce uninvited guest, Captain."
"You'll have to forgive Worf. He's just discovered opposable thumbs and he's feeling overconfident."
- - Worf and Q
"Into the jaws of death rode the three hundred..."
- - Picard, before entering Lwaxana's guest quarters for a formal dinner
"You don't understand-"
"Wrong, Graziunas. I do understand. I just do not care. Not about your rivalries. Not about your blood feuds. Not about your houses. A plague on both your houses! All I care about is that we started out with a young couple who wanted to celebrate a joyous union. And instead what we have is anger, jealousy, vituperation, accusations, hatred, and poor spirits. Now, what do you call that sorry state of affairs, eh?"
"Why, Jean-Luc! It's what you humans call "love."
- - Graziunas, Picard, and Q
"She's really beating the stuffing out of him. What do you think we should do?"
- - Riker and Worf, talking about Lwaxana's retaliation against Q
"Picard, get some hair. Your brain has caught cold."
- - Q
"She was magnificent, wasn't she?"
- - Q and Q Too, on Lwaxana
- Q and Lwaxana Troi appear in the same story.
- An audio adaptation is available on compact disc or cassette, read by John de Lancie and Majel Barrett Roddenberry. Each actor takes turns as narrator, voices his or her own character, and divides the remaining characters up by sex. Also available as a download from the iTunes Store.
- In another example of Shakespeare and Star Trek, two feuding houses are joined when offspring from each family fall in love. Romeo and Juliet is brought up for comparison, with Picard discussing the differences between the two stories.
- Jean-Luc Picard
- Lwaxana Troi
- Wesley Crusher
- Deanna Troi
- Miles O'Brien
Dr Beverly Crusher
- Ambassador shuttle
- Long-range passenger spacecraft of Lwaxana Troi, which ferried her from Betazed.
- Wesley very nearly consummates ownership of a blue-skinned alien girl given him as a gift. He asks for Troi's advice.
- Humanoid space-based species. Their society is divided into Houses, distinguished by the skin and hair colors unique to each family line.
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