At the crew's insistence, Picard reluctantly agrees to take a week-long vacation to Risa, a tropical resort. However, following his arrival, the captain's peace is disturbed by Sovak, a Ferengi who accuses Picard of conspiring with Vash, a woman in possession of a mysterious optical disc.

Although Picard knows nothing about the disc, Vash implicates him by slipping it into his pocket without the captain's knowledge. Returning to his room, Picard is also confronted by two Vorgons, Boratus and Ajur, who have been shadowing him.

The duo reveals that they're a security team from the 27th century in search of the Tox Uthat, a powerful secret weapon. According to their history books, the scientist who invented the Uthat traveled back in time to hide the device from criminals who tried to steal It. What's more, Vorgon records indicate that it's Picard's destiny to find the missing object on Risa.

Although skeptical of the Vorgons' story, Picard discovers he has Vash's disc and confronts her. She claims the disc was given to her for safekeeping by the archeologist who discovered the location of the Uthat, just prior to his death. She hid the disc in Picard's pocket to prevent it from failing into Sovak's hands, since he plans to find the Uthat and sell it to the highest bidder.

With Sovak hot on their trail, Picard and Vash use the information on the disc to locate the Uthat's reputed hiding place, where they begin digging for the weapon. When It doesn't turn up, the trio surmises that the archeologist's findings must have been flawed. But when Picard later catches Vash sneaking out of town, he realizes that she already has the weapon, having found it long before she led Picard and Sovak on a wild goose chase to the hiding place in order to throw the Ferengi off track.

When Vash shows the Uthat to Picard, the Vorgons appear, demanding the weapon. But having learned from Vash that it was the Vorgons whom the inventor had originally hidden the Uthat from, Picard grabs the device and then signals to Riker, who, based on prior orders, beams the device away and blows it up. The disappointed Vorgons reveal that Picard did fulfill his destiny by destroying the Uthat and they concede defeat ... this time.