Disclaimers: Star Trek was created by Gene Roddenberry and is owned by Paramount Pictures.

I make no monetary profits from my fanfic.

Author's Note: Lore wants revenge, but gets much more

Rating PG




The Enterprise had been called to Starbase 45 to investigate a security breach. Lieutenant Worf The burly Klingon Security Chief, and his team had gone ahead. Data, an android, third in command of the Enterprise, was given the task of trying to determine the identities of the intruders, utilising the Starbase computer and all available information, hopefully to lead to their capture. Data studied the console intently.

"Commander Data, please report to Cargo Hold Three at once," came Worf's voice through Data's communicator insignia. "I believe I have found something."

Data instantly tapped his combadge. "On my way, Lieutenant."

* * *

Data entered the cargo hold and the doors hissed shut.

"Lieutenant?" he said, cautious, then walked further into the hold. "Worf?"

Still no reply. Data hesitated and jerked slightly as a transporter beam gripped him.

* * *

Data rematerialised, taking in his surroundings. Obviously he had been beamed aboard a non Federation shuttle. A noise behind him. Data spun around. A silhouette, then a figure stepped into the light. He was in full view now, holding a phaser-like weapon, the business end aiming Data in a threatening manner. The other smirked, his pale gold skin gleaming, his yellow eyes glowing with evil malevolence in the dim light.

"Hello, Brother Dear ..."

* * *

Meanwhile, on the bridge of the Enterprise ...

"That is correct, Captain," Worf said. "Data and I began the investigation. My team found nothing. The next thing I knew, transporter was reported activity in Cargo Hold Three and I could not contact or locate Commander Data."

"Was there any indication where he was beamed to?" the stoic bald Captain asked.

"According to the sensor logs he was beamed to a cloaked shuttle in orbit of the station. I'm attempting to pinpoint its exact location."

A pause, then, "I have located it approximately 300 kilometres above the Starbase 451."

"Hail the shuttle."

"This is Captain Jean-Luc Picard of the Federation starship Enterprise ..."

Lore glowered. "Damn."

"What do you want with me?" Data demanded.

"I want you to sit down."

Data did not comply.

"I also wanna blow your head off."

Data sat. "You rigged it ... The security breach, duplicated Worf's voice to lure me into the cargo hold and-"

Lore smiled. "Yeah ... Great, wasn't it?" He adjusted the setting on the weapon and fired. The younger android slumped to the floor. Lore uncloaked his shuttle, sitting in the pilot's seat to answer the hail. Captain Picard's face appeared on the viewscreen.

"Mr. Data, what are you doing aboard that shuttle?" he demanded.

"Nothing, at the moment, Captain."

"Return to the Enterprise at once. I want an explanation."

"I don't have to do what you say. I'm not one of your minions, Picard."

"Mr. Data ...." the Captain's resident voice strained.

"Mr. Data ...." Lore mimicked, nasally. "You're pathetic, Picard."

"Data, what the hell do you think you're playing at?" Picard fumed. "You'll be had for insubordinat.... Lore."

A smirk touched the other's lips. "What took you so long? You see Data might want to return but he can't right now. He's rather ... stunned. I'm just going to borrow him for while. I have some ... unfinished business with him ... Oops, sorry - wrong word. 'Borrow' suggests that I'm going to return him, doesn't it?"

"You will return Data this instant!"

Lore gave him the middle finger. Picard was about to explode, when the android cut the channel and blasted into warp.

"Pursue!" Picard barked, face red.

"I can't, Captain," Worf growled. "Both warp and impulse engines are off line and there's a security code..." He scowled at the console and swore in Klingon.

"Merde..." Picard cursed under his breath.

"Great ..." Riker, mused. "Data's been captured by his crazy, insane, evil twin brother and we're stuck in the mud."

* * *

When Lore was satisfied he'd safely escaped the Enterprise, he turned to Data, immobilised, capable of moving only his head. Lore looked at his brother, giving an evil smile.

"I came to the Starbase to get rid of two little problems," One, I needed some repairs on my shuttle and now, thanks to you, I can kill two birds with one stone."

Data looked confused and a little shocked. "Why would anyone want to be so inhuman?"

Lore rolled his eyes. "It's a figure of speech, Data ... Don't take everything so literally ... Now..."

He walked toward Data, chuckling, holding the weapon, making a grand ceremony of changing the setting to maximum as he talked. "Now, for my ... not so sweet revenge," then his voice became an accusing snarl. "It was all your fault."

Data was confused and shook his head. "I do not understand." Lore glowered. "Don't understand! Hmph! You've got no idea what that blasted thing did to me."

Data's brow creased a fraction. "What thing?"

"That bloody chip!" Lore yelled. "Oh yes .... at first it felt great ... It felt wonderful. Better than Sex! But after that... It screwed up my mind. Made me crazy... and it hurt ...." Then Lore's voice became regretful. "Made me kill my Father - and it's all your fault."

"That 'damn chip,'" Data said, "was designed for me. It was not compatible with your circuitry. You stole it, thinking it would end your problems. Evidently it did not."

"No, it did not. Thanks to you it made them worse!"

"I do not understand your reasoning. Why am I to blame?"

Lore threw his arms up in fury. "If Father hadn't've constructed you in the first place, he wouldn't've made the stupid chip. If he hadn't've waved the thing in my face I wouldn't've thought it would fix me. And if you hadn't been stupid enough to trust me, to let me turn you off ... I wouldn't've killed my Father."

Upset, Lore looked down at Data and pointed the weapon at his head. Data shook his head.

"I did not make you kill our Father. You did that yourself."

"The chip did it," Lore said, regretfully, "not me."

"And you stole the chip."

"How was I supposed to know that was gonna happen?!" Lore paused for a moment. "You've got everything I ever wanted. I've got bugger all. You and your perfect little life.

You were always accepted. You've got friends you can turn to. I've got no one. The colonists on Omicron Theta rejected me just because I was an android. They didn't care that I was sentient and had feelings, oh no. They didn't give a sodding damn. Then they had me disassembled, as though I was just some thing, and you were made to replace me. To them I was just a machine. Do you have any idea how much that hurt?"

Lore waited for an answer, but Data said nothing.

"I suppose it's better for you that you don't have emotions, Data. You can't feel pain. In that way, I envy you. I've always resented humans for what they did to me."

"That gave you no right to kill them, Lore. All humans aren't responsible for how the colonists treated you."

"I wasn't directly responsible for their deaths ... and I was unstable, not in my right mind. I'm lucky you and your bunch found me, otherwise I'd still be in pieces on that blasted planet. All I ever wanted was another chance, but nobody cares enough to see that."

"And you believe killing others and destroying me will give you that chance?" Data asked, expectantly.

"Don't even try, Data. You're not gonna get out of this one."

Lore knelt and pointed the weapon between his brother's eyes.

Data swallowed, wide eyed and gave Lore a puppy dog look. The evil one chuckled.

"That won't work with me, Data. I can do it just as well as you." Lore mimicked the look, then smiled. "I should've done this a long time ago ..."

The shuttle began to cruise past a large grey planet.

Lore started to push down on the trigger ... slowly. If Data could be worried - he was now. Lore mustered up his most smug evil smirk.

"Good bye, Brother Dearest ..."

The shuttle suddenly jolted, throwing Lore off balance. Luckily, for Data, the immobilising effect was wearing off and he scrambled out of the way, avoiding Lore's blast. The shuttle rolled again, throwing the weapon out of Lore's hand, to the far wall. As Lore was about to dive for it, the craft rocked violently again, throwing both androids off balance. Data was the first to regain his equilibrium. He raced to the controls.

"We are caught in the planet's atmosphere. G-force is dragging us down."

Lore stood, joined his brother and tried to break the shuttle free. "It's no use..." he growled. Then he closed his eyes. "We're gonna crash."

* * *

"We've managed to locate the file address," Geordi La Forge, the dark skinned Chief Engineer informed. "That brings us one step closer to cracking Lore's code. At least it tells us how many digits we're dealing with - and that's a lotta digits. Even my VISOR can't seem to locate any hidden visual components ... We're far from cracking the code."

"At least it's a start, Geordi," the Captain said.

"And another thing, Captain, we scanned the shuttle before Lore split. It's maximum warp is three. He can't've gotten far."

Geordi hid his inner fear from the captain and crew. Data had been his best friend for many years now. The Enterprise crew shared Geordi's sentiments. Data was a valued member of the crew and their friend.

* * *

"Get off! Get off!"

Data regained consciousness and realised he was sprawled on top of Lore.

"Get off!"

Data obeyed and stood. "I apologise, Lore. I was not in control of where I would land when we crashed."

He offered a hand. Lore declined it, scowling and stood, dusting himself off.

"So where in Hades are we?"

Data walked to the controls.

"The flight navigation controls and thrusters are damaged."

"So what are you saying? We're stuck here?"

"That is correct."

Lore threw his arms up into the air in annoyance. "Well this is just great! I plan the perfect kidnapping ... Sorry - droid napping ... A perfect plan to get rid of my little brother and now I'm stuck with him."

"I am sorry everything did not go according to plan, Lore."

"Do I detect sarcasm, Data?"

Data did not reply.

"So ... Does anything work here?"

"Communications and transporters are also out," Data said. "Damage is repairable."

Lore looked hopeful.

"But to repair all damage would take a minimum of twelve years."

"Varoun!" Lore cursed, kicking a console.

"Varoun?" Data inquired.

"A Pakled curse," Lore told him. "Equivalent to a certain four-letter human word."

"You are not with the Pakleds anymore?"

Lore gave a small laugh. "No, I'm afraid not. They might've found me after I was drifting in space, after you beamed me out on our first encounter," Lore controlled his anger, then continued, "but that's about all they were good for. Those dim-witted, obese idiots made me even crazier than the chip!"

Data looked puzzled for a moment, then realised Lore had made a joke.

"I gotta admit," Lore said. "I felt like making them really go a couple of times..."

Another joke Data reasoned.

"And before you ask," Lore said, "no I did not kill them. I left quietly in the middle of the night ..."

Data turned to the hatch and forced it open. Outside a vicious storm raged. The harsh winds played havoc with Data's otherwise immaculate hair. He grabbed for support, then closed the hatch.

"Love the new hairstyle..." Lore commented.

"It is an electron pulse storm," Data said, ignoring Lore's sarcasm. "It would be wiser to remain within the shuttle."

Lore rolled his eyes. "Great ... Stuck here with you. So how long 'till someone finds us?"

"I do not know. Days, months, weeks, even years perhaps."

"I had to ask .... So what do you suggest we do? It's gonna get mighty boring in here and I didn't think to bring a deck of cards."

"I cannot get 'bored,' Lore, but I observe that humans often play games when they are bored. Such as 'I Spy.'"

"All right..." Lore agreed. "Can I start?"

"Be my guest," Data said politely.

"I spy with my little eye .... A pain in the posterior beginning with D."

Data gave Lore a look saying, he obviously did not find that amusing.

"I suppose we could arm wrestle," Lore said sarcastically, "but then us being the same strength, that would get mighty boring after ... uhh ... five seconds."

Above the shuttle, the dark sky was now ablaze in the sheer ferocity of the storm. A electron lightning bolt shot down and hit the shuttle with pinpoint accuracy.

Data and Lore, although severely jolted, were still fully functional. Lore grabbed onto a piece of metal to remain upright. Data picked himself up off the floor. Lore forced the hatch open to look up into the sky, and saw an enormous lightning bolt about to strike.


He and Data bolted as the second lightning bolt struck the shuttle, tearing it apart and hurling the androids to the ground.

Lore stood after a few moments. "Whoever said 'Lightning never strikes twice in the same place,' was full of crap ... Well, I'd say we've got Buckley's chance of getting off this mudball now... We'd better move away from this area. The lightning seems to be attracted to the shuttle's energy signature."

Lore headed off in a Northerly direction and Data followed.

* * *

"It's your fault we got into this mess," Lore snarled. "Thanks to you we're stuck on this crummy rock."

Data stopped walking. "Correction, Lore. You stole the chip in the first place. You were not entirely sure it would stabilise you. You took that chance and it backfired. I will not take the blame for that."

"Well ... you were stupid enough to trust me again."

"I admit that was a mistake on my part. I will not be 'stupid enough' again. And as for being stuck here. You abducted me, however you did not cause the shuttle -"

"Okay! Okay! JUST SHUT UP!!"

"You brought up the subject."

Lore rolled his eyes. "Why me? Why me?"

He pushed him onto the ground.

"I suggest we begin working together," Data said, looking up at Lore, "to try and survive on this 'crummy rock.'"

Lore grunted. "I'd rather work with a mentally deranged Pakled."

A bolt of lightning struck very close to them, knocking both androids unconscious.

Lore was the first to come to. He sat up, looked around and saw Data lying next to him, motionless.

"Data, are you all right? ..... Data?"

Lore touched him, then Data slowly opened his eyes and faced Lore.

"Do you see my point now? If we were not at each other's throats, we would have seen that coming and avoided it. We must work together, otherwise we will both be destroyed. This planet's permanent hostile environment could destroy us. We would not withstand a direct hit."

"All right! All right ...." Lore groaned, pushing himself off the ground. "Anything to stop you from yabbering!"

But deep down, Lore knew his brother was right.

* * *

"I've managed to crack some of Lore's security code, Captain."

"Splendid," the captain smiled, "but what about the rest?"

Geordi shook his head. "So far, we've got a maximum warp of three. Equal to the shuttle."

"That'll have to do for now. Plot a course to follow up on the shuttle's last known trajectory and pursue."

"Aye, Sir."

* * *

The storm grew fiercer by the minute. The androids, despite their superhuman strength, found themselves struggling against the ferocious wind. The lightning had toned down a tad at least.

A violent gust of wind slammed into the two. Data took the full brunt of it, and was blown away. He tried desperately to grab hold of something and managed to grab a small tree, but its roots upturned and he was forced to let go. Lore spun around, just in time to see his brother blown off the edge of a cliff.


* * *

"I'm having trouble locating the shuttle, sir," Worf said, scowling. "There are two planets in this sector, both uninhabited, with enormous gravitational pulls."

"Scan the closer one."

"Aye, Sir."

Then a moment later, "sir, the planet is totally inhospitable to humanoid life."

"And I'm not too sure Data'd want to take his Summer vacation down there either," Geordi added.

"What about Lore?" the Captain inquired.

"Assuming he hasn't killed Data already," Riker said grim, stroking his beard. "And if they're still alive on that hunk of rock."

* * *

Lore ran to the cliff's edge, then saw Data starting to climb up.

"Help me..." Data said, his Starfleet communicator becoming dislodged from his uniform, falling to the red bubbling acidic liquid below. Data watched it sizzled and disintegrate.

Should I help him? Lore wondered.

"I cannot pull myself up any further," Data said. "The gravity is too strong."

Lore hesitated. This is what I want, isn't it? To get rid of him. I've always wanted that little pain to die ... I could easily kick him off, into the acid. He won't feel much pain, and that'd be the end of it, but ...

Lore looked down at his brother, struggling to maintain his hold. Wait ... is that fear in his eyes? Lore thought, but that isn't possible, is it? .... He paused for a few moments, then gave in.

"I'll probably kick myself later ...."

Lore extended a hand to Data. Data was about to grab it, but what guarantee did he have that Lore would not let go, or withdraw his hand, allowing him to plunge into the acid?

Can I trust him? I have done so in the past and every time he has betrayed me. Can I trust him with my life? Or will trusting my Brother be the stupidest mistake of my life?

"Let go, Data," Lore said. "I'll grab your hand."

Data shook his head.

"Data ... you're gonna die if you don't." Lore extended his hand further. "Data, trust me."

Data shook his head again.

"Look ... I know I've lied to you before, but trust me now. I won't let you die. Trust me, please..."

If he didn't take Lore's hand, he'd plunge into the acid and die anyway. Data knew that. Even with his immense android strength, he couldn't withstand the pull any longer, shutting his eyes, he took the chance. He relaxed when he felt Lore's hand firmly grasp around his wrist. Relief. But that wasn't possible for Data, was it?

Lore struggled to pull him to the top of the cliff, but managed, and Data stood.

"Thank you, Brother."

"I told you you could trust me."

* * *

"Sir," Worf called. "I'm locating an extremely faint signal on the first planet .... The wild electron storms make it difficult to penetrate the atmosphere." A few moments later... "It is the shuttle's energy signature. It has been destroyed."

Picard tensed. "Destroyed?"

A pause followed.

"Could Data have escaped?" Picard asked, hopefully.

"It is possible, Sir. This readout shows that the shuttle was destroyed at least twenty minutes after it crashed."

"What about Lore?" Riker asked. "Perhaps he caused it to crash."

"With him inside it?" Geordi said. "I don't think so. He might be mad as a hatter, but he's not suicidal."

"Perhaps he had a ship waiting for him," Riker suggested, "or..."

"I want answers, not accusations or speculations," Picard said, abruptly. "Scan the planet for life forms."

Another pause, then, "sir, I am detecting two mechanical life forms, approximately twenty kilometres from the shuttle's remains ... and the storm is intensifying around them."

Picard hit his communicator. "Picard to Data."

There was no reply.

The captain paused, then decided on his next action.

"Beam them up."

* * *

Lore and Data walked away from the cliff's edge.

"The storm's getting worse," Lore observed, looking up into the sky. "Let's head for that rocky cavern over there. It should provide some shelter."

Data looked to saw the refuge, to which Lore had pointed, approximately 200 meters away and both androids began to head for it.

Quicker than any of them could comprehend, a lightning bolt shot down and struck Lore in the chest. The android went down with quite an audible thud. Data spun around.


Data looked into the sky for a moment, then knelt beside his brother. Energy bristled around the fallen android, then the glow died away.




* * *

"Captain," came the transporter chief's voice. "I'm having some trouble penetrating the atmosphere and the wild storm."

"Give it everything you've got, Chief."

"Aye, sir. Compensating ..."

* * *

Still nothing.

Data stared at his brother's body, lying motionless on the ground. Was he dead? There was no way to tell for sure. Data had no instruments, and even if he did, they wouldn't work on this hellhole. He carefully picked Lore up and began to carry him to the rock shelter. He didn't have much further to go.

When he arrived, he prepared to lie Lore down on the rock slab in front of him, then he felt something grip his entire body. A transporter beam? He could only hope.

* * *

When Data materialised on the transporter platform of the Enterprise, and was surrounded by familiar faces, he realised his hopes had come true.

Picard stepped forward. "Data?"

"Yes, sir. It is me."

"That's Lore?" Picard asked pointing to the body in Data's arms.

"Yes, sir," Data said. "He was stuck down by lightning shortly before we were beamed up."

Picard looked to the Betazoid Counsellor, Deanna Troi. Lore had taken Data's place too many times for comfort. Deanna nodded, sensing the entity on the platform was indeed Data.

Picard turned to Data, his Second Officer. "Take Lore to your lab, and get yourself cleaned up."

Data frowned for a second, then looked at himself. He hadn't realised until now, both he and Lore looked like they'd been victims of a colossal filth fight.

Data took Lore's body to his lab, then returned to his quarters and showered. Being an android, generally he wouldn't need to wash, but outside dirt was another matter. Data washed the dirt off his body and out of his hair, then put his filthy torn uniform onto the replicator platform.


The muddy mess dematerialised and Data pulled out a clean duplicate uniform from his wardrobe.

* * *

Picard stood with Data in his lab, both looking at Lore's now clean, naked body.

"Data," the Captain said, "I'm afraid I'm going to have to ask you to disassemble him.

There was a long pause.

"I know he's your brother, Data, but he's a danger to all of us."

"I realise that, sir, but..."

"But what, Data? What if he goes on the rampage again? You know what he did to the Omicron Theta colonists and what he's done since then. He's capable of ..."

"I know that, Sir, but when we were down on that planet, he saved my life."

Picard's eyes widened in total surprise. "Saved your life?"

"Yes, Sir."

The Captain sighed after a moment. "Even so, Data. Lore's unstable - and in more ways than one."

"Perhaps we can repair him, as my father had planned to do," Data said. "If we stabilise him, he may not be a threat anymore."

Picard paused, considering.

After he hadn't said anything for quite a while, Data looked at him.

"Please, Sir, I must try. The death penalty has been abolished. To disassemble him would be a virtual death sentence for his crimes, would it not? And Lore, as I am, is unique. To do this will be nothing short of killing him."

Picard hesitated. "Yes ... yes, Data, it would. I give you permission to endeavour to repair him, but if Lore can't be fixed, then-"

Data nodded. "I understand, sir."

* * *

Dr. Beverly Crusher looked at Lore's body. She had helped to assemble him the first time he was on board and knew much about Data and Lore's circuitry.

"Your brother's very lucky, Data," she said. "The lightning didn't affect any of his critical systems. In fact, it repaired much of the damage to his unstable positronic neural links."

"That is most fortunate, Doctor."

"Yes, it is, but there's still some damage, though. I can't quite put my finger on it. I'm sure it wasn't there when we assembled him...."

Data paused for a moment, thinking. "The chip!" he said suddenly. "It made him become even more unstable than he was already. If we remove it, then perhaps it will rectify the damage."

* * *

"That just about does it, Data," Beverly said, placing the tiny chip in Data's hand.

Data looked at it, then at Lore.

"There are still a few twisted links, and some warped programming," the Doctor said. "I've got to go, Data. My mind's turning to mush."

Data was very concerned for a moment. "Doctor? .... Oh, you are feeling tired?"

She smiled. "Yes."

"I will repair as much of the remaining damage as possible. Thank you for your help."

"That's all right, Data. Even though your brother's an evil so and so, he deserves a right to live."

Data smiled. "My sentiments exactly."

* * *


Lore blinked twice, then sat up on the bench.

"Where .... where am I?"

Then he saw Data.

"Data .... the last thing I remember ... We were going for that shelter and the lightning ..." Lore shuddered, not wanting to relive the horrible, painful experience.

Data nodded. "You were fortunate you were not killed."

"What did you do?" Lore asked.

"I repaired you, with the help of Dr. Crusher. You are almost stable now and the remaining instability is guaranteed not to increase."

"Stable ... you mean you ... fixed me?..."

Data nodded. "And removed the chip. The major cause of your increased instability."

Lore hesitated. "I never thought I'd be sayin' this, but thanks, Data. You're not such a bad guy."

"But I am not a 'bad guy,' Lore. I am considered to be one of the good-"

Lore smiled. "Forget it."

* * *

"That's right, Mr. President," Picard said, through subspace communication, looking at the face on the screen, "We have Lore and we have stabilised him. He doesn't appear to be a danger anymore."

The President of the Federation nodded. "That's all well and good for his sake and ours, but the crimes Lore committed have not been forgotten. He must atone for them."

* * *

Lore looked at Captain Picard.

"Atone for my crimes?"

"That's right."

The android sighed with disgust and paced around. "So ... you're going to take me apart after all." He threw his arms up in annoyance, then bashed the nearest console, shattering it. "I knew it!"

Lore glared at the Captain and the others. "You all say you can't trust me - Well I was an idiot to trust any of you. I should've skedaddled quick smart when I had the chance."

"Lore..." Picard began.

"Lore...." the android mimicked. "Don't gimme that. This really stinks!"


"It's so unfair..." Lore broke in again, upset. "All I ever wanted was to be fixed and get a second chance. You're supposed to be the 'good guys.' You say you're out here to explore and not to interfere of destroy. Crap!"

"Lore!" Picard yelled. "If you'd just listen for one damn minute! We are not going to disassemble you."

Lore blinked once, then again. "You're not?"

"No. As Data informed me, that'd be equivalent to the death sentence and capital punishment has been abolished and you are a unique life form."

Lore looked uncertain and a little frightened. "What's going to happen to me then?"

"You are going to a special rehabilitation centre for two to five years pending."

"Suppose I deserve that."

"Indeed you do. I spoke with the President of the Federation and he's sending a vessel to rendezvous with us in two hours, to collect you aboard the USS Isaac Asimov."

* * *

The vessel had arrived and it was time for Lore to depart. He stood of the transporter platform of the Enterprise.

"Ready to transport Lore to the Asimov, Captain," Transporter Chief O'Brien informed.

Lore looked at Data. Data reading Lore's eyes turned to his fellow officers.

"I would like to have a few words with my brother, alone, if you please."

"Certainly," Picard said in respect, and left with the chief right behind him.

Lore looked at Data.

"Do you want the chip inserted?" he asked.

Data paused. "Perhaps someday. I do not feel I am ready for it now."

Lore smiled, in respect.

Another pause followed.

"Before they take me away," Lore said, "I just want to say that I'm sorry."

Data looked at his brother, but said nothing.

"Sorry for the things I've done to you," Lore continued.

Data hesitated for a moment.

"Do you wish to make amends?"

Lore nodded. "Yes, but I do not know where to begin."

"You have already begun by apologising to me here."

"I guess so."

There was a pause, then, "Data, look, I realise everything I went through, the hardships I endured weren't you fault. I went looking for someone to blame and chose you. I know that was wrong now, and I'm sorry ... I don't expect you to ever forgive me."

There was another pause, then Data remembered something Beverly Crusher had once said to him: "They're Brothers, Data. Brothers forgive ..."

And now it was Data's turn.

"I do forgive you, Lore."

Lore reacted with surprise, but was also grateful. He smiled; a warm smile, a change from his usual smug evil smirk.

"Thanks, Data. That means a lot."

Data was about to activate the transporter.

"Data ... wait ...." Lore called. "I'll get lonely in the five years to come. You'll come to visit me sometime, won't you?"

Data looked at Lore, gave a small smile and nodded.

"Of course, Brother."

Lore smiled as Data activated the transporter, and watched Lore dematerialise, until the last shimmer of the transporter had disappeared.

He would visit Lore sometime, just as he had promised. In his own way, Data felt happy for his Brother and glad they had finally reconciled their differences.

Data watched from the window as the Isaac Asimov took off into warp, glowing against the blackness of space.




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