Aboard the Valley Forge on a long trip to their next campaign, the Roughnecks have drawn watch as most of the ship's crew rests in suspended animation. While doing a routine check on the stasis tubes, Doc is attacked by Zander who bursts out of his stasis tube, having evolved into a hideous half-bug, half-human creature. The Zander Bug eventually takes over the ship, and to keep the Roughnecks busy, shuts down the power to the crew's stasis tubes. If the power is not restored quickly, the entire crew in suspended animation will perish. Eventually the Roughnecks are able to thwart Zander's plans to crash the Valley Forge on to a mysterious planet but Brutto is severely injured and will be sent to Earth to recoup. Unfortunately, Zander Bug escapes to the planet surface below, which turns out to be the Bug home world of Klendathu.