After ten months without a break, Sub-Commander T'Pol notes efficiency on board Enterprise is down, and suggests shore leave on Risa. Captain Archer agrees. En route, however, Archer receives a transmission from Admiral Forrest, informing him of a Vulcan Ambassador in need of extradition. With the closest Vulcan starship over a week away Enterprise is ordered to retrieve and deliver her to the Vulcan cruiser Sh'Raan.
Arriving at Mazar, Archer and T'Pol are surprised to hear the Ambassador has been expelled for abuse of her position. Archer is called to the bridge and speaks to a Mazarite captain who requests that V'Lar be returned for further questioning. He stalls for time to contact Starfleet, but the Mazarite ship opens fire. During the battle, the aft phase cannons disable the enemy ship's engines, allowing Enterprise to escape. Confronting V'Lar, Archer finds her unwilling to reveal more, stating that it is a matter for Vulcan High Command only. Archer then orders Ensign Mayweather to set a course to return to Mazar.
Later, after speaking with V'Lar in private, T'Pol persuades Archer to continue the rendezvous with the Sh'Raan, but Enterprise immediately comes under attack from three Mazarite ships. Archer opts for flight but even at Warp 4.9, the Mazarite ships still gain steadily. V'Lar suddenly confesses that her reputation was intentionally sullied to make the Mazarites believe she would no longer be a credible witness against corrupt officials. V'Lar offers to surrender herself for the safety of the crew, but Archer refuses. Stalling for time, Archer informs the Mazarites that V'Lar suffered injuries and is in critical condition, allowing them to board Enterprise. The Sh'Raan arrives and threatens to destroy the Mazarite ships unless they surrender immediately. At this point, Archer's ruse is revealed, and V'Lar appears unharmed. A grateful V'Lar tells them that their bond of trust and friendship bodes well for future human-Vulcan relations.