is exploring Pyrus 7 and Scotty, Sulu, and Jackson have beamed down but lost contact. Finally Jackson calls up to the ship and requests beam up, but is otherwise non-responsive. When they beam him up he collapses, dead. A man’s voice emanates from his mouth, telling them that there is curse on the ship and they are all doomed.
McCoy determines that Jackson apparently froze to death, and they can find no signs of Scotty or Sulu on the scanners. Kirk, Spock, and McCoy beam down and find themselves in a thick fog, although Spock says the weather conditions indicate clear weather. He picks up life forms on his tricorder and they follow the signs through the fog where three witches confront them. The witches warn them off before disappearing, but Spock confirms they are projections without substance. They lose contact with the ship and proceed to an enormous castle. Entering through the door, they find a black cat seemingly waiting for them. They follow it down the hallway only to fall through a trap door and get knocked unconscious.
The landing party wakes up chained up in a medieval dungeon, and Spock speculates that someone is trying to scare them drawing on human ancestral memories. He, of course, has no such ancestry. Sulu and Scotty arrive with phasers and escort them out, seemingly reduced to mindless zombies. The landing party makes a break for it... and there’s a flash of light and they find themselves in the castle’s dining hall. A bald wizard with a wand introduces himself as Korob, but appears somewhat insecure and nervous. The black cat is there and Korob treats it as an equal.
Korob tries to bribe them with food and then rare gems, using his “magical” abilities, but Kirk is unimpressed. The cat transforms into the beautiful Sylvia, who demonstrates her abilities by mesmerizing McCoy. Kirk disarms Scotty and demands answers at gunpoint, but Sylvia is unimpressed. She brings out a model of the Enterprise
and explains that she can use sympathetic magic. She froze a model of Jackson, killing him. Now she holds the model ship over a flame. Aboard the Enterprise
, the temperature goes up sharply. Kirk, getting word of this, surrenders his phaser.
Kirk is interested in their “magic” but Korob is more interested in the Federation’s science. He then seals the model in a glass cube, trapping the ship in a force field. Korob sends Kirk and Spock back to the dungeon while Sylvia keeps McCoy to continue mesmerizing him and probe his mind.
While the Enterprise
works to break the force field, Spock wonders at the two magicians’ limitations and ignorance of human nature. Kirk concludes they are the spearhead of an alien invasion and plan to use the knowledge in their minds to expedite their plans. A zombie McCoy returns along with Scotty and Sulu and take Kirk to Sylvia. Korob is unhappy with Sylvia’s sadistic treatment but she intimidates him into following her lead.
Sylvia tries to seduce Kirk, intrigued by the sensations found in the human body she has taken on. She offers the captain power and rulership at her side, much to Korob’s disgust. After he leaves, Kirk seduces her right back while trying to find out about their power and Sylvia talks about the “transmuter.” Figuring out he’s toying with her, she sends him back to the dungeon.
Later, Korob frees Kirk and Spock, noting that the Enterprise
crew has already penetrated the force field. He tries to get them out, warning that the others are lost and Sylvia has gone insane from taking on human form. Sylvia, now transformed into a giant black cat, blocks their way and their phasers are useless. They go back to the dungeon and Korob tries to stall her while Kirk and Spock escape through the trapdoor they dropped down earlier. Korob is crushed but gives Kirk his wand, the “transmuter.” Upstairs, they fight it out with the McCoy, Scotty, and Sulu, easily defeating them. Sylvia arrives and reverts to human form, demanding the transmuter. When he isn’t convinced, she draws a phaser and threatens him with it. He starts to give it over... then smashes it.
There’s a flare of light and the landing party finds itself standing on the barren landscape. The castle is gone, and the only things left are two 6” tall aliens: Sylvia and Korob in their natural alien forms. Without the transmuter, they quickly die and the landing party beams up. Share this article with your friends