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When we last left our heroes (or anti-heroes, it's too soon to tell), they had absconded from Xija Station in Peggy, and have landed on Planet Griebo — but the ship does not come away from the journey unscathed. Peggy needs some gas in the tank bad, and Amae has identified some oil tankers abandoned somewhere in the jungles-turned-garbage-dump. She sends Isaac and Elida out there to siphon off some fuel, equipping them with some spiffed-up comms.
Isaac and Elida find the tankers, and quickly get to work. But they're ambushed by a battalion of humanoid chimpanzees. Isaac is abducted and Elida's comm bracelet goes on the fritz. Perfect time for a flashback. Two years ago, on yet another planet, Oro, Elida had to save Isaac's behind after some unscrupulous buyers were going to kill him after a deal went downhill. So, they have some history. Back in the present, Elida is mowing down the monkeys when her gun fails; she's nearly a split banana when a stranger comes to her aid and blasts away the assailant.
And as far as Admiralty business is concerned, Lazaro is still on the hunt for Elida and her two accomplices. After a quick vid chat with his parents, who demand he return to Areopa, Lazaro is even more motivated to prove himself before his condescending superior admiral officers — and defies their orders in favor of torturing Nim in exchange for loyalty. Speaking of vid chats, while Amae is facetiming with Chaz, one of the rogue monkeys comes onboard Peggy and starts yanking out breaker cables like they were swinging vines. After blasting away the intruder, Amae discovers Elida's comms are down, and Isaac left his on the ship. Buzz kill.
Out in the wild, that Good Samaritan that saved Elida? Her name is Gladys. And she's not so good. In fact, she led Elida right into a trap set by some professional fighting talent scouts. Perfect time for a flashback. Back on Oro, Isaac suggests he and Elida team up given their complementary personality styles (i.e. silly cop / badass cop) in exchange for half ownership in Peggy. So that's how they linked up…
Back on Griebo, Elida and Isaac end up in the same electrified cell, where they are to wait before being thrown into the ring to fight. It's a perfect time for them to rehash their past, particularly that thorny episode on Varook, three months ago. When Isaac finds out that Elida is actually heiress to the throne, he kind of gets pissed that they've been busting their bums scavenging when she could, he thinks, just make it rain on command. That drives a wedge in their friendship, Elida incapacitates Isaac, and he shoots her as she prepares to fly off with Peggy. Their therapy sesh is happily cut short when Amae sneaks in to free them from captivity, and also show off some wicked fighting skills.
The three manage to make it out of their cell and out into the open, but Isaac and Elida's bickering only lands them once again under the net. Time for another flashback! Back on Varook, Isaac is approached by the monarchists looking for information on Elida. He gives them some B.S., but they in turn give him Elida's mother's brooch and tell him: she's still alive. Broochless, but alive. Back in the present, while the three are tied up and need some cheering, Isaac tells Elida that her mum is on Planet Wix. That'll keep their spirits up as they're thrown into the ring to fight to the death with a humanoid bunny.
Except it's not fighting to the death. It's karaoke to the death. And they have to sing or swim… in molten fire. After belting a few bars, Elida dropkicks the bottom of their cage, swings out on a rope, and starts cleaning up. Before they take off for Peggy, Elida makes a pit stop to pick up a gizmo that Amae wanted. Maybe it's the gift, or maybe it's the adventure, but either way, Amae wants to join the team on the hunt for Elida's mom. The triumvirate is forged!
But it's not all chummy news. Back on the Admiralty flagship, Nim gets hold of Lazaro's torture device, and sticks itself in the neck with the blade. Good guy down. And that brooch supposedly belonging to Elida's mom? It's a tracking device used by the monarchists to follow Elida's movements.