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The main story is narrated by Q, the character that John de Lancie played in various Star Trek episodes. Q's story begins with him and his family enjoying some deep sea fishing at the bottom of a mighty ocean. (The Q family is omnipotent, the crushing depths of a mere ocean is nothing to them.) Suddenly a giant fissure opens up on the ocean floor, and a massive whirlpool above it begins to pull everything in the ocean down into the newly formed canyon, including Q's wife and son. Strangely enough, the whirlpool disaster wasn't exclusive to just the one ocean. Every body of water in the galaxy was completely drained into the single canyon, even virtual bodies of water like the holodeck environment Picard and Data were fishing in. Fortunately, Q was able to save himself, Picard, and Data; unfortunately, Q was unable to save his family, and is now mad as a hornet about their disappearance.
Q, Picard, and Data grudgingly decide to team up to find out what caused the metaphysical whirlpool, albeit for different reasons. Picard and Data fear the possibility that the universe is ending, Q only cares about finding his wife and son. Either way, the three have to work together to figure out what kind of force is behind it all.
The novel contains examples of:
- Bold Inflation: Data vs. M: Not just Bold inflation, but Font inflation as well; to illustrate the rage in each participant's voice, several pages are written in fonts at least five times bigger than normal.
- Brought Down to Normal: What the crevasse does to Q's powers. The longer you stay in one place, the more powerful you become...but Q isn't staying in one place for very long due to his wanting to find his wife and son.
- Five Stages of Grief: It turns out the entire universe is going through this, as a ploy by the Continuum to make Q accept the end of the universe. It doesn't work.
- A Form You Are Comfortable With: As always with the Q Continuum...but it goes even further, as Picard's own mind adjusts the Continuum into a Dixon Hill novel...while Data's lack of ability to filter the Continuum makes him overload from the sensory perception and shut down.
- Literal Genie: How Q tricks the Nagus into losing the wager.
- Nothing Left to Do But Die: God. And she wants to take the rest of creation with her.
- Papa Wolf: Q's family is in trouble. Fuck the end of the Universe.
- Rage Against the Heavens: Q gets an awesome rant at the climax. It's so epic that God herself is impressed enough to forestall the end of everything and hit the Reset Button.
- Shout-Out: They take advantage of the fact that Wallace Shawn played Grand Nagus Zek to deliver a nice one to The Princess Bride.
- Talking Is a Free Action: Picard tries to talk AU!Locutus to death...on top of a train that's going to be incinerated while everyone aboard is in denial about it. It fails.
- Your Mother: How the war between the Q and the M got started. More hilarious: none of the Q actually had a mother to insult.