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Episode Recap: A Royal Ass-Kicking
Former queen Elida is cornered by her nemesis, so an old friend comes to her aid, bringing big news.
We meet Elida, the eponymous vagrant queen, on the planet Gallianox. She's scavenging for some green, iridescent substance known as Siberian Salvage when she's dropped in on by two butt-headed alien brigands. They try to deprive her of her loot, but she dispatches them (their limbs, and their brains) most handily, and takes her prize.
Only, when she tries to cash in on her stash at a bar in Xija Station, her hookup shortchanges her. But Elida is desperate for the money and takes the deal. Before she can blow Xija, Elida needs some assistance with her vehicle, and her bartender friend Chaz sends her to his mechanic sister Amae at her shop. After a quick once-over of Elida's ship, "Peggy", Amae recommends a new power regulator — at a discount, if Elida buys Amae a beer. It's a deal.
Meanwhile, some top-level Republic officials led by the particularly odious Admiralty Commander Lazaro are dropping in on Xija Station with some important business to attend to. They put a moratorium on all traffic in or out of Xija while they comb the station for a fugitive — aka Elida. The Republic is willing to suspend their neutrality agreement with Xija in order to catch her, so it's a big deal. But why? The answer lies eight years in the past: that's when Elida's family's ship was hijacked by Republican officials, her mother killed, and she was sent off in an emergency capsule alone to fend for herself.
Back on Xija, and in the present, Elida gets cornered by a Republican guard, and is nearly ejected into outer space when a frenemy from her past, Isaac, blasts her menace away and saves her. Chaz hides these two in a backroom in the bar, giving them a moment to breathe… and rehash their convoluted past. Elida ran away from Isaac, he shot her, she took his ship, which is really her ship, he sold some junk info to the Republicans, they tracked him down, now they're after her… it's a whole thing. Isaac wants her help to get off the station, but she won't give it, and instead gut punches him and takes off.
It's a dicey time to be walking around. While waiting in line for the transport dock, Elida is intercepted by a mysterious geezer who claims loyalty to the crown (meaning her). She goes with him to a basement room where other monarchists have gathered to welcome her and inform her that Lazaro and the Republicans are looking to kill her, so she doesn't claim heirdom. With that news, she's – reluctantly – ready to accept these strangers' help.
Down in the garage, Republican guards threaten to take Amae in for questioning when Isaac drops in. Together the two take out the baddies, but their celebration is cut short when Amae sees over the CCTV Lazaro showing off her much-beaten brother, Chaz. Elida sees the stream too, and she doubles back to save him. Only, before she can get away, she's knocked out by a fanatic loyalist.
Using quick-thinking and some hidden instruments, Elida evades her "loyal" helpers with the assistance of humanoid-animal hybrid Nim (cute little devil). Meanwhile, Isaac and Amae wind through the bowels of Xija incognito in admiralty guard uniforms, and "transfer" the prisoner Chaz from his holding. Funny, Elida had the same idea, and together the teams meet in the hallway impersonating someone or something else. It's a total farce!
That is until real Admiralty guards come blasting through the hallway, setting them on the run again. They congregate close to the transport bay, preparing a grand exit. Chaz takes the high ground to provide cover. Before they attempt to board Peggy, Isaac drops some heavy knowledge: Elida's mother is still alive. In exchange for more info, Isaac wants his ship back. It's a deal.
After raining a fusillade of fire on Admiralty guards, the quartet are feet away from boarding Peggy when Lazaro gets Nim with a blast. So that Elida may proceed with her journey, Nim sacrifices himself with a grenade. The now-trio takes off in Peggy, while a still-twitching Nim is left in the care of the Admiralty. But Peggy starts to go haywire, and the three need to make an emergency landing STAT.