The Enterprise is en route to Starbase 416 for medical treatment for a nine-year-old, who is critically ill after a prank by his older brother went too far. But Data suddenly begins to act strangely. He drives the crew from the bridge by shutting off life support, then changes course and establishes force fields to evade security so that he can beam himself down to an unknown planet. Once he arrives, he is examined by his creator, Dr. Noonien Soong, who explains that he summoned Data using a homing device. While Data explains that he has no memory of reaching the planet, Lore arrives, having been drawn to the planet as well by the homing signal. Data explains to Soong that Lore is dangerous, but Soong insists that Lore merely requires fine-tuning; he did not realize that the earlier prototype was still functioning, so he never tried to correct Lore's emotional programming. The dying Soong has a gift for Data, however, an emotion chip free of the instabilities that plague Lore. When Soong goes to rest, Lore deactivates Data and steals his clothes, then fools Soong long enough for the scientist to insert the chip into Lore rather than Data. Soong is distressed, explaining that the chip was designed for Data and won't help Lore, but Lore believes Soong owes him and attacks the old man. When an Enterprise landing party finally succeeds in breaking through Data's security, they learn that Lore has fled and Soong refuses to accompany Data back to the ship. With no time to spare, Riker insists that Data leave at once so that they can get the dying boy to the starbase in time. The boy is saved and finally forgives his brother, which Beverly tells Data is what brothers always do.
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