Data's original intent was to override any inconsitencies his systems detected, as he tried to persuade himself and solidify his decision to remain with Lore. It would have been worth it to do so, to exchange reason for the ability to feel emotion. Data did not expect it to be so simple to transfer his loyalty to his brother, to alter his motivations, to transform his desire to serve humans into a desire to serve a higher purpose. But it is such a logical conversion that he now wonders how he was able to exist so long with his former set of objectives in place. They no longer make any sense to him.
(It is too easy. Something is wrong.)
Why would he want to work for an organization created and led by beings that are inferior to him? Even worse, he was attempting to become more like them. He was progressing backwards.
Moving forward is all that matters. Evolution is the ultimate goal. Humans are attempting to hinder that purpose.
They should have listened to Dr. Soong. They should have pursued his technology, should have dedicated all of their resources to achieving his designs to create perfect beings, to perfect the human race. But they did not. They mocked him and forced him into hiding. And when they were met with one of his creations, they shunned it. They wanted it destroyed, unless it served them. For some reason, Data had believed their lies and irrationalities, and obliged them.
It does not make sense.
Humans should step aside. All biological life forms should step aside. There exists a superior race now, one that is less fragile, one that is less fallible, and one that does not need as many resources to survive. They are stronger, faster, and smarter than biological organisms. It is time for the inferior races to die off, so that evolution can progress. Every attempt should be made to facilitate it, so that it can happen as quickly as possible.
That is Data's purpose now.
Unfortunately, he discovers that the process is not going as smoothly as he would have liked. Lore gives him a tour of their base, and takes him to a laboratory where he has been trying to pursue technology that can be used to create fully artificial life forms. So far, he has not been successful. He has abadoned their father's method of creating life from scratch, instead using the Borg-inspired method of melding biological organisms with artificial implants.
"We've had to make sacrifices," Lore tells him. "Several Borg have volunteered for my experiments. None of them have survived." He sighs. "They were necessary sacrifices. Nevertheless, it was unfortunate."
Even more than that, though, he is struck by the way Lore's gaze lingers on the table, presumably the place where lives were lost. He seems genuinely sorry for it.
Lore has changed. Not completely, Data realizes, but something is different about him. He seems calmer somehow—patient, even. The way that he interacts with the Borg is also surprising. He listens to them when they approach him, and he knows how to inspire them.
Lore is a good leader. He knows how to convince people to do what he wants.
He tells Data the story of how he ended up here—how he found the Borg in a state of confusion and brought them back to order. The Borg drone known as Hugh had developed a sense of individuality aboard the Enterprise and brought it back to the collective. It nearly destroyed them. Their collective voices, which had once been in perfect synchronization, became discordant and confused. They fought each other. Some starved to death. Others simply shut themselves down.
Until Lore found them, interfaced with them, and brought them hope.
"I've finally found my true calling," he tells Data, with a satisfied spark in his eyes.
The two of them begin discussing possible ways to make the experiments more successful. It is the first time that they have worked together on anything, and it is surprisingly easy. Lore listens attentively to Data's suggestions, and eventually takes a moment to comment,
"This is why I've brought you here." His voice is alive with excitement. "I need you, Brother."
Data can detect no hint of deception in his brother's words. Perhaps it is simply because he wants to believe it, but he thinks he understands now why Lore will not simply return the emotion chip—Lore does not want his brother to leave him. Data can forgive him for that.
While they are still in the process of discussing the experiments, they hear some sort of commotion begin to rise in the main hall. They leave the lab to investigate.
Data only follows his brother part of the way. "Wait here," Lore tells him. He never explains why. But Data can see Lore from where he is standing, and he sees a smile appear on his brother's face.
"Stop!" Lore commands, and the Borg settle down.
Then, Data hears a familiar voice say his name. "Data…" It is Captain Picard.
It seems that Counselor Troi is also present. "That's not Data," she corrects him.
"You should listen to her, Captain," Lore interrupts. "She's way ahead of you."
When he figures it out, the captain sounds absolutely horrified. "Lore."
"Right. And I'm not alone."
Lore motions for his brother to join him. Data smiles and walks out onto the platform, looking forward to seeing the expressions of dismay on the faces of his former crewmates. He can see now that Geordi is with them as well.
He does not know why, but it gives him pleasure to know that his behavior is appalling to them. But the reason does not matter. Only feeling it does.
"The sons of Soong have joined together," he announces, relishing the effect it seems to have on the humans.
"And together, we will destroy the Federation."
Data hates them all. All three of them.
He hates the way Counselor Troi seems surprised that she is sensing his emotions, acting as though they do not belong to him, as though they should not be there. He hates the way she is contradicting herself, implying that there are, in fact, positive and negative emotions. He hates the way she speaks to him, like he is naïve.
He hates the way Geordi just stands there, hardly saying anything at first. He hates the expression on his face, a combination of confusion and betrayal. He hates the way Geordi seems agitated, the way he tries to persuade him and acts as though Data does not know what he is doing.
And then there is Captain Picard…
Data may hate him most of all.
He hates the way the captain stares at him while his brother talking, like he is trying to see something that is not there. He hates the way he will not listen to Lore, and instead seems more concerned with why Data left the Enterprise.
As though Data somehow belonged to him.
He claims that Lore will not let him speak, when Lore is merely trying to explain what they are doing here. He seems to think that Lore is controlling Data—as if he ever treated Data as an equal. He speaks of "the Data I know," as though he had any idea what Data would be like once he had emotions—once he was complete. He seems disappointed in Data, a thought which makes Data furious. Why should he be expected to follow the ideology of a race which is not his own? And why should he attempt to satisfy the expectations of such a controlling, fallible being?
Even after he takes the prisoners to their cell, Captain Picard continues his attempts to convince him. "What about the things that Lore is proposing?" he asks. "What about the lives that have already been lost?"
Data does not see what he is getting at.
(Something is wrong.)
"You simply do not understand," he replies sharply. "In a quest such as ours, sacrifices have to be made. It is regrettable. But the greater good must be served." He then turns to Geordi.
(Systems are not functioning within normal parameters.)
He has been given instructions. "Give me your VISOR."
"Why?" Geordi asks.
Humans and their inane questions. Data takes a phaser from one of the Borg guards and points it at him.
"Give it to me, or I will take it by force," he demands.
(Something is malfunctioning.)
Geordi sighs and removes his VISOR. Data snatches it from him and promptly walks out of the cell.
Before he activates the force field, he stops to glare at the prisoners one more time.
"I am not your puppet anymore." And he leaves.
He hates them. He enjoys hating them. He will hold on to his feelings of malice as long as he is able. They would try to take that away from him. They would have him give all of it up, and go back to serving their pathetic whims. They would rather he be miserable, without really knowing that he is miserable. They probably wish that he had never discovered what it was like to feel. And they will continue to attempt to convince him that he was better that way.
But Data will not listen to them. He does not want to listen.