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Practice English Speaking&Listening with: Concerning Flight

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( crowd yelling )


Bruti animali!


MAN: No, Leonardo, you are the animal!

MAN 2: A bird who cannot fly!

Better than a man who cannot think!

WOMAN: The pigeon speaks!

( people cooing like pigeons)

( growling )



Foolish Florentines!

A bird is a mechanical instrument

that works according to mathematical laws.

An instrument that surely I can recreate.

How did it fail?

Maybe you underestimated the wingspan.

Had not the River Arno taken us to its arms,

we would both have died.

Jumping off the bridge was a wise precaution.

Against death, yes.

Against humiliation... no.

"The great bird will take flight

and bring glory to its nest"--

so I have bragged for months.

Instead, we almost drown with half of Florence watching.

( grunts )


No more.


have you been to France?

Not recently.

Ah. The king of France is a great admirer of mine.

"The divine Leonardo" is all I hear

when I walk through his streets.

And what music do I find in the streets of Florence, eh?

The cooing of pigeons and the babbling of fools.

Catarina, we are leaving.

You're giving up.



Your beautiful painting of the Adoration...

the great

bronze horse in Milan...

the Battle of Anghiari...

unfinished, all of them.

You were going to publish your notebooks.

You never did.

You have given up--

abandoned your most important works.


There is a...

a tavern just outside Paris,


a charming bistro where the wine is...


Janeway to the Bridge.

CHAKOTAY: We're under attack, Captain.

I'm on my way.

( horses whinny, people scream)

Earthquakes... and idiots.

Florence be damned.

Who are they and why are they shooting at us?

Unknown, Captain.

They're not responding to hails.


TUVOK: None.

KIM: I'm reading a slight destabilization

along the shield perimeter.

Attempting to compensate.

Uh, Torres to the Bridge.

JANEWAY: Go ahead.

We just lost the warp diagnostic assembly.

What do you mean "lost"?

It disappeared.

I'm picking up dematerializations on Decks 4

through 12.

Evasive maneuvers.

They're matching our course changes.

It's definitely some kind of transporter beam.

Fire at will.

I have the will,

but not the means, Captain.

Targeting control is down.


KIM: Captain, the main

computer processor is gone.

We've lost weapons, navigation

and propulsion.

Backup systems are coming on line.

Full phasers, manual targeting,

keep firing until you hit something.

The other ships are retreating.

Chakotay to all decks.

Full damage reports.

I feel like we've just been mugged.

They were employing a high-energy transporter beam

designed to locate objects of technological value

and remove them.

They removed a lot.

Five tricorders, three phaser rifles,

a couple of photon torpedo casings,

two antimatter injectors,

a month's supply of emergency rations.

No great loss there.

DOCTOR: Excuse me.

You're forgetting the most important thing

of all-- my mobile emitter.

Without it, I'm stuck in Sick Bay.

I can't go anywhere.

We'll do the best we can, Doctor,

but our top priority is the main

computer processor.

B'Elanna, I want a defense against another

transporter attack.

Harry, do everything you can to track

those ships.

Yes, ma'am.


( console beeping )

( door opens )

Seven... hey...

If you're here to fraternize,

I do not have the time.

Actually, the Captain wanted me to locate

the ships that attacked us.

I've pushed the long-range sensors

about as far as they'll go...

And now you believe the sensors can be extended

by using the deep space imaging system.

Well, yes.

I've been working on that exact procedure

for the past two hours.

Really? Let's have a look.

Do you doubt my ability to finish the task?



I came here to work.

Um... I realized you'd already started the job...

so I offered to help.

That's all.

I offered to help.

An algorithmic feedback

is interfering with the resolution.

Decompile data banks 59 through 17

and attempt to isolate it.


or you should leave.


I'm a pretty easygoing person.

I mean, it takes a lot to...

ruffle my... feathers.

( clears throat )

But that's not true of everybody.

You've got to learn how to phrase things

a little more... diplomatically.

Or not.

Captain's Log, Stardate 51386.4.

With ship's systems at nearly half capacity,

it's taken us ten days to track our stolen technology.

I'm picking up Starfleet signatures

from two of the continents.

Can you find the main computer processor?

It's on the northern continent

in what looks like a city...

but there's a lot of signal interference.

I'll never be able to localize it from here.

TUVOK: Captain, I've identified

nearly 27 kinds of alien ships in orbit of this planet.

It appears to be an active center of commerce.

We should be able to place an undercover away team

on either continent without attracting attention.

That's good enough for now.

Tuvok, you and I are going after the processor.

Tom, Neelix, I want you

on the other continent, find out what you can.

At the very least, try to get our emergency rations back.

Chakotay, you have the Bridge.

( conversing in alien language)

It never fails to impress me.

No matter how vast the differences

may be between cultures, people always have something

that somebody else wants and trade is born.

Or more to the point, theft.

What have you got?

The materials in the construction of this city,

and the technology in use

appear to have originated from numerous sources.

No doubt stolen.

The myriad signatures have resulted

in high interference levels.

I am unable to... A moment.

I am picking up a Starfleet signature.

The computer processor?

I don't believe so.

The signal magnitude is too low.

The signature is...


DA VINCI: Catarina!

Che maraviglia!

Out of my way!

Out of my way! Scusa.




Welcome to America!

Tell me, Catarina,

what do you think of the New World?

How did you get here?

A question I have asked myself many times.

One moment, I was packing for my journey to France,

the next, I was in this land of marvels.

Possibly, upon leaving my workshop,

I was accosted by Spanish sailors...

rendered unconscious, delivered to a galleon

in the port of Genoa and carried

like a sack of grain across the vast Atlantic.

Curious ears.

My traveling companion, Tuvok.

Oh, what the old philosophers say is true--

"monstrous and wonderful are the peoples

of undiscovered lands."

But tell me, Catarina...

how did you come to the Americas?

Oh, it's a long story.

A Portuguese ship, some Turkish pirates...

a couple of hurricanes...

I'll tell you all about it some other time.

Excuse me.

There is the man that I have been looking for.

He has an apparatus that I need

for my next invention.

My patron is a demanding taskmaster.

Your patron?

The prince of this city.

Buon giorno, signori.

The da Vinci character is interpreting this world

through the limited capacity of his holodeck program.

He sees everything in 16th century terms.

But what is he doing here?

I was running the da Vinci simulation

when we were attacked.

His program must have been active in the computer's memory

when the processor was beamed off the ship.

And then downloaded

into the Doctor's mobile emitter.

But by whom?

His patron?

The prince?

Marvelous, no?

A plasma injector conduit.

Starfleet issue.

Call it what you will.

With this machine, I can make

mercury flow in three directions at once.

You must see my new workshop.

The prince has been very supportive.


Let's go.

So, Catarina...

what do you think of this place?

My workshop in Florence

was but a cave of ignorance in comparison.

Your new patron gave you all this?

He is the perfect prince.

Intelligent-- but not overly so.

In awe of my talent, but not threatened by it.

And above all, and most importantly,

his purse is inexhaustible.

And in return for all this support?

I give him my ideas.

I have even resurrected my great bird,

like the phoenix of legend.

They have materials here, Catarina,

that are so strong and so light

that surely my prototype will ascend to the heavens.

Be careful!

They have found a way

to harness the energy of a thunderstorm

and to expel it with great force.

A pistole

that shoots not a lead ball

but a bolt of lightning.

Well, I'd like to meet this patron of yours.

And so you shall this very evening.

But I caution you...

he is as ruthless as a Borgia.

First Officer's Log, Stardate 51392.7.

Though we've yet to hear from the Captain and Tuvok,

Paris and Neelix have returned from their mission

to the southern continent with some disturbing evidence.

Who sold you these things?

I didn't come here to be interrogated.

You told me you had a warp coil to trade.

I said you could

talk with Commander Chakotay.

I didn't say he'd necessarily do business with you.

Well, this is a waste of my time.

I agree.

There's the door.


Good-bye. Make sure he doesn't

get lost on the way out.

No, wait, wait.

His name is Tau.

He controls the Seventh Province in the North.

He sells weapons and technology.


Which he confiscates from passing ships.

Yes, using his translocator device.

Which he also stole.

It's made him a rich man.

There are a few items I'd like to get back.

Where can I find him?

I deal with a go-between.

I've answered enough

of your questions.

Let's talk about that warp coil.

I'm looking for something...

You can keep what you've got.

We'll call it even.

This was a waste of my time.

Not really.

These colors look good on you.

Torpedoes, plasma grenades...

particle beam rifles...

I can even get a ceremonial spear

if you're interested.

I am not interested.

My point is, no matter what the weaponry,

if you desire it,

chances are I have it.

Or I can get it.

Your prices are said to be unreasonable.

"Unreasonable" is such a strong term.

But if I can't sell to you,

I'll sell to one of the other colonies

in your system.

A violent sort,

your neighbors, aren't they?

I'd hate to make your life difficult

by offering my weapons to them.

But if you don't give me a choice...

There can be no doubt

our computer processor is not in the city.

Well, that certainly makes things

a little more difficult.

Leonardo's new patron.

He's quite the businessman.

We may have no choice but to do business with him.


Here are some friends I want you to meet.

Try to keep our hologram occupied.

But, Captain...

Well, make small talk.

Vulcans do not make small talk.


Thank you.

That is very considerate.

Catarina, wait a minute!

Mr. Da Vinci, how have you been?

Benissimo. Now if you will pardon me.

I wish to speak with you.

What about?

About you.

You are most intriguing.

Ah, grazie.

And you, Signore Tuvok,

are equally provocative.

Where, exactly, are you from?


So... what do the Scandinavians think

of this New World?

It is... fascinating.

And you are obviously enjoying it.

Beyond words.


Italy is already a fading memory.

This city is full of mechanical marvels,

the countryside alive with creatures

strange and wonderful.

I'm curious.

How have you spent your time here?

I work... on my inventions and my art,

and I accompany the prince

when he goes to visit his great fortresses.

Well, this fascinating conversation...

has left me as dry as Vulcan.


An island off Sicily. Have you been there?



We'll talk later.

Good evening.

And to you.

Enjoying yourself?

Not yet.


How can I change that?

By having exactly what I want

and selling it to me at a low price.

The former's quite likely, but as for the latter,

I don't sell inexpensive merchandise.

I have a client who runs a colony

about 20 parsecs from here.

His computer is outmoded,

so I'm... looking for a replacement.

A computer that could coordinate the systems of an entire colony.

That's no small order.

But I think I might have something

that will interest you.

Hello, Computer, and how are you today?

All systems are functioning within normal parameters.

Verbal interface. Impressive.

Computer, tell us your technical specifications.

Simultaneous access to 47 million data channels,

transluminal processing

at 575 trillion calculations per nanosecond.


Operational temperature margins from ten degrees kelvin

to 1,790 degrees kelvin.

I could sell it to you,

but I could hardly let it go for anything less than...

a warship.

Or we could find something else in your price range.

We should be looking for a stronghold

or storage facility--

anyplace Tau might keep the stolen technology.

There are several possibilities,

all within a ten-kilometer radius of the city.

I must admit, your Mr. Da Vinci is an astute observer of nature.

These maps couldn't be improved upon

by Voyager's topographical computer.

He was a Renaissance man, Tuvok.

Interpreted, reinterpreted, deconstructed, fantasized about

all through history.

Vasari thought he was an angel.

Freud thought he had

a problem with his mother.

James T. Kirk claimed he met him,

although the evidence is less than conclusive.

Buon giorno, amici.

Good morning, Maestro.

Did you sleep well?

Too well, I'm afraid.

My apologies, Catarina.

The morning is half gone.

Nevertheless, the images

that come before the eyes upon awakening

can be inspiring.

( chuckling )


Catarina, where did I leave my silver-tip pen?

I could swear it was here on...

Captain, we should return to Voyager.

With my tricorder readings and Leonardo's maps,

we can use the ship's sensors to triangulate

the exact location of our processor.

We'll work on two fronts.

You go back to the ship.

I'll stay on the surface and keep working with Leonardo.

He has access to Tau

and he knows the territory.


Charming as your childhood hero may be,

the program was not designed for use outside the holodeck.

This is Leonardo da Vinci we're talking about.

Simulation or not, he's one of the greatest

creative minds in Earth's history.

The program reproduces the entire range

of da Vinci's behavior-- his genius

and his notorious unreliability.

We have an opportunity here...

and I want to take advantage of it.

Tuvok to Voyager.

One to beam up.


Where did he go?

Back to the ship.

The ship?!

You mean, the Portuguese are still in the harbor?

Well... not exactly... but they're nearby.


Mad sea dogs, the Portuguese.

So, what's new?


What's been happening on the ship?

Nothing of consequence.

The Captain and Tuvok

are still searching for the processor.

What's the mood?

If you're referring to the crew morale,

they seem focused on their mission.

Hmm. I heard there was something of a fuss

in the Mess Hall last night.

A trivial misunderstanding.


Well, you seem in excellent health.

Most of your implants are stable,

but your optical interface is misaligned again.

I told you to come in for maintenance once a week.

So... what happened in the Mess Hall?

Lieutenant Torres and I were working

on some astrometric data.

There was a disagreement.

I understand things got a little... heated.

Lieutenant Torres became emotional.

She chose to display hostility

rather than to counter my argument.

What did she say exactly?

It is irrelevant.

Suffice it to say, I was correct.

She was not.

Details, Seven, I want specifics.

I see no reason to discuss

these trivialities.

Without my mobile emitter, I am a prisoner in here.

I need to know what is going on

beyond these walls, trivial or not.

( sighing )

Torres referred to me as an automaton.

She also employed

a series of profane Klingon insults.

Shall I translate them for you?

By all means. I very much...

Tuvok to Seven of Nine.

Report to the Astrometrics Lab.

You may go.

I'll be right there, Commander.

Come back whenever you feel like talking.

I'll be right here... all by myself.

I'm entering Leonardo's maps

and my tricorder data into the imaging system.

I will create a search pattern

for our missing processor.

Da Vinci has accurately rendered

the topographical detail.

However, his coordinate axes are pre-Cartesian.

You will have to convert them.


It is puzzling that even

a Vulcan would refer to a holographic character

by name, as if it were alive.

It seems somehow... illogical.

Localizing grid.

Altitude: 20 kilometers.

One of these storage facilities

undoubtedly contains the processor.

Increase sensor resolution to maximum and scan the area.


Our computer processor

is inside this structure.

Unfortunately, the building

is surrounded by a dispersion field.

Transport will be impossible.

If the Captain can get inside the facility

and reach the processor itself, she may be able to assist us.

If she were to initiate a power surge in the processor,

it might produce a signal strong enough for us to lock onto.

That is what I was referring to.

I will inform the Captain.

It's not too far, across open country.

Leonardo says he's been there, and he can help me get inside.

TUVOK: Understood.

Stand by for my signal.

If I can find the processor,

be prepared to beam it back to Voyager.

Aye, Captain.

Tuvok out.

So it's Captain?

I see you and my hologram are old friends.

My engineers have developed a defense

against your transporter,

so I suggest you return what you took from us

and let me go.

Or what?

You're in no position to bargain.

The only ones who will bargain will be your crew

and it'll cost them

a great deal to get their Captain back.

I wonder what you're worth to them...

( groans )

He'll be fine.

Let's move.

I'm not going.

You said you'd help me.

I have already gone too far.

He was threatening you, I had no alternative.

But I must be here when he recovers his senses.

I will try to explain.

Maybe, if I am lucky, he will not have me executed.

We are leaving.

Your time here is over.

I will not leave this New World!

Your New World is a prison.

You are under his control.

When are we not in prison?


When are our lives free from the influence

of those who have more power than us?

If this New World is a cage, than it is a cage of gold,

of marvels--

of opportunities.

If this prince is violent, violence can be tempered.

But you can't stay here forever, Leonardo.

Europe is your home.

Europe is despicable.

Here I am free to do what I wish,

free from judgment, free to fail--

without a sense of shame, without...

without the taunts of the ignorant.

Leonardo, whether you want to admit it or not,

they do need you back home.

In Florence, Milan, Avignon--

they need your genius, they need your heart

and right now, I need you, too.

So come on.

I will not go...

for Florence or Milan or Avignon...

but for you, Catarina...

for you, I will go.

I've lost the Captain's combadge signature.

Scan for the holo-emitter.

It's 4.7 kilometers outside the city.

So Leonardo's on the move.

Is the Captain with him?

Her combadge may have malfunctioned.

Or she might have been discovered.

Should I beam da Vinci back to the ship?

If the Captain is with him

and attempting to recover the processor,

she may need his assistance.

Keep a lock on the mobile emitter

and stand by.

KIM: Aye, sir.

JANEWAY: Where's the entrance?

DA VINCI: I can't recall.

Why not?

These fortresses--

I've been to half a dozen of them.

All are similar, but each is different.


observe the construction--

like the veins and arteries of a great animal.

Now, this is the way to build--

using nature as your guide.

No more lessons.

I need to get into

this building and I need to get into it now.

That is not the way

an apprentice should address her master.

Maestro, your prince is going to come after us.

The only escape is inside.


We will be trapped inside.

No. There is a wondrous invention inside this building.

It's called a computer processor.

We can use to send a beacon to...

to the Portuguese ship.

And they'll come and rescue us.


This invention, how does it work?

Well, it's complicated...

but trust me when I say

it can send messages over great distances.

All we have to do is find it and we will be rescued.

But the question is: How do we get inside?

Shadow and sunlight.

Shadow and sunlight.

The prince, like any other thief,

will fear theft above all else.

So this stronghold will have but one entryway--

on the side facing away from the sun.

So the bright light

would be in the eyes of anyone who might attack.



I'm no longer reading the mobile emitter.

They've gone inside the structure.

KIM: Commander,

they are being pursued.

Over 30 armed guards

are converging on the storage facility.

All available power to the transporters.

Let's try to get them out of there.

DA VINCI: Even Theseus could not negotiate this labyrinth.

Not without a compass.

( tricorder beeping )

Your compass is speaking to you.

This way.

( distant clanking )

A trove of invention.

The prince has done well for himself.


warp plasma injectors...

a site-to-site transporter.

Your computer?


Computer, do you recognize my voice?


Well, that's a start.

Che bella!

There's a mechanical woman inside.

In a way, yes.

Initiate a level-4 induction relay overload.

That procedure is not recommended.

Command override: Janeway-pi-one-one-zero.

Authorization confirmed.

Initiating overload.

That's it.

And now?

We wait for the Portuguese.

Commander, I'm detecting a power surge

in the subspace frequency range.

It could be the processor.

Lock on.

Increase power to the confinement beam.

With any luck,

we might be able to pull the Captain

out of there along with it.

( power surging )

Step close, Leonardo.

We're going for a ride.

I don't understand.

Trust me.

The building is probably surrounded by now.

There's only one way out.

Maestro, come here.

Catarina, what just happened to me?

I was shot... yet I live.

Such things are not possible.

This is an invention from another land.

It's called a site-to-site transporter.

In the blink of an eye,

it can move us out of this building

and a few kilometers away from here.


Come on.

I must have an explanation.

Leonardo, you've always said

that it's a poor apprentice

who can't surpass her master.

There are things in this world

that I understand, and you don't.

( rapid beeping )

Madonna mia.

The processor is on board.

The Captain?

Still on the planet.

KIM: Commander.

13 vessels are approaching Voyager

from the surface.

Tom, take us into a higher orbit.

Bridge to Torres.

I want that processor

back on line.

We've still got a Captain done there.


DA VINCI: I cannot believe it.

I will not believe it.

My mind cannot accept the evidence of my eyes.

Is this sorcery? Are we in purgatory?

JANEWAY: Neither. You said yourself

this place was full of marvels.

Marvels, yes, but this is magic--

enchantment, not science.

And I refuse to believe in enchantment.

I'll explain later. We've got to keep moving.


I must understand.


to see objects disappear into thin air...

to see lightning pass through my body...

Are we spirits?

Catarina... am I dead?

Let me ask you something.

If you were something other than a human being...

if you were a different kind of animal...

( bird singing )

if you were a small bird, a sparrow...

what would your world be like?

I should make my home in a tree

in the branch of an elm.

I should hunt insects for food,

straw for my nest

and in the springtime, I should sing for a companion.

Then you would know nothing of the politics of Florence?

The cutting of marble,

or mathematics?

Of course not.

But why not?

My mind would be too small.

As a sparrow, your mind would be too small

even with the best of teachers?

If Aristotle himself were to perch on my branch

and lecture till he fell off from exhaustion...

still the limits of my mind

would prevent me from understanding.

And as a man, can you accept

that there may be certain realities

beyond the limits of your comprehension?

If I could not accept that...

then I would be a fool.

MALE: Spread out! You...

Come on.

Catarina, this way, up the hill.

I know just the escape.

Torres to Bridge. We're in business.

We've got full navigation... full propulsion

and full transporters.

Good work B'Elanna.

Sensors show the Captain and da Vinci

have left the structure.

If we could dip into a lower orbit,

I should be able to lock on to the mobile emitter.

Set the confinement beam wide

and prepare to transport both of them back to the ship.

How close do we have to be?

At least 500 kilometers from the surface.

Those ships will try to block our descent.

Ready for some fancy flying?

You bet.

( Da Vinci panting heavily )

Momento, Catarina.

( sighs )

Escape, signorina, is very near.

I'm starting to wonder.

( whispers ): Where are you, Chakotay?

Help me to the summit.

We're at 1,000 kilometers.



TUVOK: The ships are powering weapons.

Go to Red Alert.

Shields are holding.

850 kilometers.

Evasive maneuvers.

When Petrarch climbed Mount Verdoun

and saw all Europe below him,

he knew he was witnessing the birth of a new age.

He was witnessing the Renaissance--

the rebirth of our world.

So, Catarina, at this summit here,

you and I will be reborn.

Reborn... with wings.

This could be a problem.

Hurry, there's not much time.

Sir, they seem to be on the edge of precipice,

but we're still too high for transport.

You've made some improvements.

I took your advice after the last attempt

and increased the reach of the wings.

And the angle of attack?

Yes, yes, that, too.

Unfortunately, the River Arno is quite absent.

This time, if we fail,

only the stones will break our fall.

The wing is stationary, that's good.

This looks like duranium alloy.

It should be light enough.


this time it will work.

( phaser shot )

Let's find out.

I'm reading weapons fire on the surface

near the Captain's position.

We're running out of time, sir.

700 kilometers.

Hold on, Kathryn, just a few more seconds.

Together... up.


( grunts )

Catarina, we're flying!

Like the birds!

Like the birds!

( sighs )

I have a fix on the Captain.

They are... in mid-air

on what appears to be a crude gliding apparatus.

500 kilometers!

KIM: I'm locking on.

Broad confinement beam.


Got them!

I beamed the whole contraption into

Cargo Bay 1.

Get us out of here, Mr. Paris.

Captain's Log, Stardate 51408.3.

We're back on course to the Alpha Quadrant.

With the ship's computer and the Doctor's emitter

returned to proper places,

I've set aside some time to check on the Maestro.

( door closes )

Leonardo, where are you going?


These Florentines do not deserve my genius.

I have written to the king of France,

telling him of my adventures in the New World

and invited him to soar with me off the towers of his castle.

Are you sure that's a good idea?

Why not?

We ourselves have tested the design.

But the materials...

you'll never find those metals in France.

No? Then others will suffice.

Machines that fly through the air!

Lightning flung from one's hands!

Mechanical women

who live in boxes!

These things I have seen!

And these things I must recreate.

And who knows?

Possibly improve upon.

Leonardo, I think that little flight of ours

went to your head.

And my heart.

My oldest memory, Catarina,

is of a great bird perched on my bed,

its feathers open towards me as if summoning me.

Now, you yourself have accused me of giving up,

of, uh, failing to complete my project.

I was trying to encourage...

No, no.

You were right.

All my life I have wanted to fly.

Perhaps my failure to do so

has caused my heart to remain in flight.

Leaping from one thing to another.

Never satisfied.

Never complete.

And now that you've actually flown?

Now, who knows what I cannot accomplish.

I'd like to find out.

Give my regards to the king of France.


will you walk with me to my carriage?

It would be my pleasure.

The Description of Concerning Flight