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A Ressikan flute belonging to a man named Kamin was included aboard a probe encountered by the USS Enterprise-D in 2368, along with Kamin's life memories. Through the probe, Captain Jean-Luc Picard experienced the life of Kamin and of his endangered world, and during this experience, taught himself to play the flute. He retained this talent even after the probe ended its transfer. (TNG episode: "The Inner Light")
Picard thereafter considered the flute one of his most prized possessions, and continued to play it regularly. (TNG episodes: "Lessons", "A Fistful of Datas") (TNG novel: A Time to Heal) His playing was a key element of the bond between himself and Lieutenant Commander Nella Daren. (TNG episode: "Lessons")
As of 2379, the flute was kept on Picard's ready room desk. (TNG movie: Star Trek Nemesis) It was there when the Enterprise was attacked by Hirogen during their investigation of the subspace tunnels emanating from the Azure Nebula, and relay overloads caught the ready room and its contents on fire. Though it was largely preserved by its case, the fire had made it unplayable. However, at Beverly Crusher's request, Lieutenant T'Ryssa Chen was able to repair it to its previous state. (ST - Destiny novels: Mere Mortals, Lost Souls; TNG novel: Losing the Peace; TNG - Typhon Pact novel: Paths of Disharmony)
- In Losing the Peace, is was stated that the flute had been "lost" in the fire seen in Mere Mortals, even though Picard was seen holding it in Lost Souls. Paths of Disharmony resolves this continuity error by establishing the flute itself survived the fire, but in damaged condition.