Lwaxana Troi returns to the station seeking Odo's protection. She is pregnant with a son and on the run from her Tavnian husband, Jeyal. He wants to take the baby, upon birth, away from Lwaxana to be raised in an all-male environment. Lwaxana does not want to be separated from her child.
Meanwhile, Jake Sisko spots an alluring woman arriving on the station. She finds him and invites him to her quarters. Jake backs out of a 3-day trip with his father and Kasidy in order to stay on the station and meet with the woman, Onaya. That evening, Jake meets with her and she helps him write by stimulating certain areas of his brain. However, it appears she is also taking something away from Jake, though the plot does not reveal what is taken.
Jake meets with her several times working on an ambitious novel. Captain Sisko returns to the station and eventually finds Jake with Onaya and prevents her from killing his son. The muse, an alien version of a Leanan Sidhe, justifies her actions by saying that she allows artists to "live forever" through their brilliant work which she helped produce, while she is nourished by the artists' brain energy.
Odo discovers that according to Tavnian law the son belongs to the mother's husband, not the actual father. He proposes that Lwaxana divorce Jayal and marry him (Odo). That way Jayal cannot claim Lwaxana's child. The plan works, Odo and Lwaxana are married and Jayal leaves the station.
In the final scene, we see Jake recovering. Captain Sisko has read the pages that Jake had written and tells him that he thinks Jake has the beginnings of a good novel. Jake tells his father that he does not feel that the words were his own. Benjamin assures him that Onaya had only helped him draw out what was already there. In the final shot, we see the novel's title: "Anslem." This was the title of Jake's novel in the alternate history episode "The Visitor."