The crew is having a party in the messhall to celebrate the anniversary of Vulcans saying “Hi there” to the people of the Earth. But before you can say “Please Neelix don’t dance” he does. Fortunately Chakotay stops him with the news they’ve located Talaxians ahead (his people, not Chakotay’s, Neelix’s). Paris, Tuvok and Neelix go in the Flyer to see them a they’re in an asteroid field. The ship gets damaged in a mining explosion and Neelix wakes inside on of the asteroids with a Talaxian woman, Dexa, tending to him. She tells him they avoid contact with outsiders, that went well then. She also says she shouldn’t be speaking to him, that’s gone equally as well. They used abandoned technology in the asteroids to make a home for themselves. Wouldn’t it be easier to live on, I dunno, a planet?! According to Star Trek you can’t move for uninhabited M class planets Dexa has a young son and is a widow, so obviously Neelix falls in love with her. Another race then turns up who look like Pinhead without the pins (Head, I guess?) stating they own the asteroids. Neelix tries to negotiate with them but being nasty alien types they don’t care. The Talaxians have to move to a nearby planet (See!) but still aren’t happy. Neelix has a talk with Tuvok involves hypotheticals and decides to help the Talaxians to defend their home in the rocks. Janeway in turn isn’t happy now but lets him go. They succeed in their defence with Voyager’s help and Neelix returns to Voyager. Naomi Wildman (last appearance!) is too busy to play games with him since she has Chakotay’s Palaeontology class in the morning. Boy, I bet that’s an interesting lesson. Eventually he decides what we’ve all known since the start and he leaves to become the Federation ambassador to the Delta Quadrant.
Aside from the first scene I actually didn’t find Neelix all that annoying in this episode. True he’s nearly always irritating but his leaving scenes felt right for the character who’s been with the show since the start. Indeed the Neelix/Tuvok dynamic was handled the best it’s ever been in this one. Pity the actual story was the usual bland mix of cliched plots.