News reaches Voyager through the up-and-running Pathfinder project that the Doctor's creator, Lewis Zimmerman, is critically ill. In an attempt to save his life, the Doctor's program is transmitted to the Alpha Quadrant, but once there, he finds Zimmerman does not want to be examined by an "obsolete" EMH program.
A mysterious alien with a knack for languages is able to repair a damaged message from Starfleet. The crew is elated when the message reveals that a new ship is waiting for them, that has the ability to bring them home in three months. However, Janeway suspects that this turn of luck is too good to be true.
Harry Kim arises one morning to find he is back in San Francisco on Earth with his girlfriend Libby. He learns that in this reality, he never served aboard Voyager, but instead works in Starship Design at Starfleet Headquarters. Desperate to set things straight, the only person who can help him is lowlife Tom Paris, who has no idea who Harry is.