A damaged Cardassian ship limps its way to Deep Space 9. On board are three occupants. Natima Lang and her students, Rekelen and Hogue. Claiming it was damaged in an unexpected meteor storm, the threesome request repairs.
On the promenade, Odo is engaged in his favorite hobby: Grilling Quark on whatever illegal nonsense he's involved in. This time he's investigating rumors that Quark is in possession of an illegal cloaking device. As the three Cardassians wander the promenade, Quark catches sight of Natima. And quickly rushed out of the bar to greet her.
He gets a slap to the chops. But he doesn't care. As he says...
Quark: This is the happiest day of my life.
Natima and the crooked Ferengi have quite a history together. While Quark tries to reignite their past relationship, Bashir and Garak have another round of "Are you a spy or not?" On the way out, Garak pauses when he spots Natima and her students. They panic, not realizing there was another Cardassian on the station.
Their worry is soon explained. Their ship wasn't damaged by any meteor storm. It was attacked. By another Cardassian ship.
Turns out the three Cardassians are fugitives. Sought by the government for trying to incite change among Cardassia.
Things get worse when a Cardassian warship shows up at the station, weapons charged. Garak strolls into ops, informing them he contacted Cardassia Central Command. And they want Natima. Sisko warns him that any show of force against the station will be returned in kind.
Quark, still trying to smooze Natima, offers Rekelen and Hogue his ill-gotten cloaking device as a means to escape the Cardassian warship. But he'll only give it to them if Natima agrees to stay with him.
In his quarters, Natima begs for him to give them the device. When he refuses to do so if she doesn't stay, she produces a phaser. Quark is confident she won't shoot him...until she mistakenly stuns him with the thing. The two share a good laugh at the incident, until Odo enters and arrests Natima.
The provisional government on Bajor has agreed to hand the three over to Cardassia in exchange for Bajoran captives. But other plans are in motion.
In his shop, Garak is visited by a Gul named Toran. The Cardassian government wants Natima and her students dead. And they want Garak to do the deed. If he does so, his exile from Cardassia will be lifted and he can go home.
After convincing Odo to assist them in escaping, Quark and the three Cardassians head for their ship...where Garak is waiting with a disruptor. While they try to convince Garak to not kill them, Toran emerges. He was just using Garak to lead them into a trap. Taking Garaks gun, he informs them he's going to kill all
of them...until Garak whips out a backup weapon and vaporizes him.
Though he tries convincing her to stay, Natima and her students leave the station.