Getting back to the never-produced The ATLANTIS INVADERS, the third-planned episode for the STARSHIP EXETER series...
A short synopsis for the released 3rd Draft is as follows: On the aquatic planet Atlantis VI, some frightened offshore workers meet at night but are brutalized and kidnapped by stronger native beings. One of the workers is spared, subsequently organizing many others to force the unwilling administrators to plead Starfleet for help. The nearest available starship, the Exeter, is dispatched to help.
Shortly, Captain Garrovick and a landing party materialize on Atlantis VI and are brought to meet its administrators, including Brian Callahan, a former acquaintance of Garrovick’s. Callahan and the nameless director admit to being coerced into calling Starfleet for help, but recant as best they can. Unconvinced, Garrovick and crew question the lone survivor of the latest attack but find out very little.
Perturbed by the Starfleet officers’ continued presence on the mining installation, Deputy Callahan bribes the workers into silence, while the Director and his aides are confronted by their silent partner, an Orion pirate.
Later that night, Commander Cutty and his 2 security officers stumble upon 3 of the Atlantean natives as they tried to infiltrate the installation. After a short struggle, the leader is stunned unconscious while the other 2 escape with one of the security men as a captive.
Back at a storage facility, Garrovick attempts to communicate with the amphibian by using a universal translator. They are interrupted when three more burst in with energy whips and dispatch all the Starfleet officers save Garrovick. Yet another amphibian, the female Tri’tillya uses another weapon to subdue the Captain into unconsciousness.
Garrovick awakens a prisoner, alongside his missing security officer and all the other miners. Garrovick overcomes his amphibian guards then frees his fellow officer. They decide to seek help and must dive into a pool of water to escape imprisonment. They emerge into another area and are again confronted by a squad of amphibians, who eventually overwhelm them. Tragically, the security officer sacrifices his life in grand Redshirt fashion to protect his commander.
Back on the surface, Commander Harris attempts to convince the Director to cooperate in locating her Captain but he refuses, even hinders all her efforts.
A prisoner again, Garrovick faces the leader of the amphibian race, Argolas. Each accuses the other of unprovoked aggression against their kind. Argolas then accuses the miners and their technology of soiling the water that is their home and source of life. Faced with this allegation, Garrovick pledges to broker a peaceful resolution. Unwilling to believe the otherworlder, Argolas’ military leader, Drident, quashes Garrovick’s plan and he is again returned to prison.
Above the suface inside a shuttlecraft, Cutty discovers the location of the underwater city. Inside the Exeter, Harris is forbidden to interfere by Commodore Jennings back at Starfleet headquarters and to pull out of orbit.
In the amphibian city, Garrovick is again shackled, but is soon covertly released by Tri’tillya. They move about a deserted city to reach the throne room, witnessing all amphibian warriors speeding to the surface. With the help of an underwater beast, Garrovick and Tri’tillya also return to the surface.
On Exeter, after discovering evidence of the colony administrator’s dubious activities that directly contravene Starfleet regulations, Harris orders a strike team to beam back on Atlantis VI and rescue the Captain.
At the installation, chaos is everywhere as amphibians and miners clash violently. The Exeter strike team appear just in time to witness a large cargo ship blasting off into the sky. Garrovick attempts to placate the two clashing sides, but is spurned by Drident who fights him hand-to-hand. Soon defeated and disgraced, an enraged Drident stabs his king out of humiliation.
Garrovick quickly returns aboard Exeter and it launches after the already escaping first ship. Quickly dispatching 2 Orion pirate ship reinforcements, the Exeter pursues the Woden class ship into an asteroid field where it accidently destroys itself.
With the conflict over, Garrovick bids farewell to the Tri’tillya, who must now lead her people as her father did.