En route to Ferenginar, Jake and Nog are attacked by a Jem'Hadar vessel. They are saved by the U.S.S. Valiant, crewed by Red squad - an elite corps of Starfleet cadets. The 22-year-old captain, Tim Watters, explains that his crew, originally on a training mission, became trapped in Dominion space when the war broke out. With the regular officers dead, the captain's last orders were for Watters to assume command. With Starfleet unaware of the situation, Watters is trying to compete the Valiant's mission to gather data on a new Dominion battleship. Caught up in Watter's fervor, Nog agrees to join the crew as Chief Engineer.