Boqin explains to Thorus and Ramsey that the last time he saw them was months ago, that in fact he met them upon their hiring and was kidnapped shortly after by a shapeshifter and an individual he describes that they recognize must be a Vorta. They tell him about the arrest warrant out for Ivers – knowing now that it was issued by the imposter-Boqin. Boqin tells them that he was able to glean only a little information during his captivity but that he got the sense that the changeling was engaged more in information gathering than carrying out a specific mission. He did his best to feed them misinformation and they surmise this is what led to the building suspicion Ivers had for his superior.
They contact Ivers and share intel on the matter. Together, Ivers and Boqin conclude that the security conference at Regulus IV would offer the shape shifters a prime opportunity to impersonate any number of security officials. Chief among their worries is the safety of Admiral Toddman, a Flag Officer assigned to Starfleet Security. They also discuss the deaths of the Romulans aboard the Armstrong at the hands of the Jem’Hadar who was inexplicably on board.
They head for Regulus to monitor the situation. The conference includes not only Starfleet security specialists but also journalists, scholars, and individuals who have been to the Gamma quadrant who can share their insights. Ramsey and Thorus propose to attend as archaeologists. Upon arriving they set Les to the task of finding some way to test A’Tora that will reveal his true nature, as a tricorder scan shows him to be human.
They arrive in time for the pre-conference breakout sessions, where various discussions are taking place to dispense what little knowledge is available on the Dominion and its potential threat. Notably, the most informed presenters seem to be Ferengi traders who have engaged in commercial exchanges with Gamma quadrant people – though their only information specific to the Dominion is that they seem less interested in commerce than anyone else they’ve ever heard of.
There is ample bitterness on the part of the few Bajoran attendees over the destruction of New Bajor, and the key speaker for preemptive military tactics supports collapsing the wormhole as the only sure method to protect the Alpha quadrant.
Meanwhile on the ship, Les has found that a changeling-specific test might be possible but not with limited lab equipment he has. When Thorus and Ramsey return to the ship, Ramsey works on a portable force field that he can take to the conference the following day. Thorus researches the crew of the Armstrong and discovers that the senior officers had all been temporarily reassigned while Ivers and Corrik were escorting their doomed Romulan dignitaries. Corrik did some research into the matter as well and found that the Armstrong was recently given a new young captain and the Armstrong is slated to bring a security official, Carston Vara, to the conference.