While the U.S.S. Enterprise heads for Bilana III to participate in the testing of a new propulsion method called the Soliton Wave, Worf receives an unexpected visit from his mother Helena and his son Alexander.
The Klingon's surprise turns to shock, however, when Alexander informs Worf that he plans to live on the ship with his father.
That night, Worf discusses the situation with Helena. She reveals that Alexander has been misbehaving and is in desperate need of his father's guidance. Reluctantly, Worf agrees to take custody of the child. But when he discovers that the boy is lying and acting up in school, Worf threatens to send his son to a rigorous Klingon school.
Sensing that there's more to Alexander's behavior than meets the eye, Troi helps Worf realize that the boy's actions may be the result of feeling abandoned by his late mother and his father, who left the child to be raised by his grandparents on Earth. Worf begins to have second thoughts about sending Alexander to the Klingon school.
Meanwhile, feeling unloved by his father, Alexander seeks solace in the Biolab, home to his favorite animals. Just then, the crew discovers that the Soliton Wave test has gone dangerously awry. The wave's power level has increased so drastically that It could destroy a nearby colony. As the crew works frantically to create a backfire effect that could dissipate the wave and save the planet, they learn that Alexander is trapped in the biolab, where a fire has begun.
With seconds to spare, Worf and Riker rescue Alexander from the Biolab, while the crew successfully destroys the Soliton Wave. Realizing the loss he would feel if Alexander left the Enterprise, Worf asks his son to remain on the ship permanently.