Khlyen is carrying the injured Dutch through a forest in the Green Space. Khlyen tells her a story which he says can save her life if she listens to every word. His story is about a warrior and a thief and centers around the beginning of Dutch and John's partnership seven years earlier at Laryon Docking Station. They're broke, but Dutch has lined up a hauling contract to The Quad. Upon arriving in Westerly, they are met by Hills Oonan who seizes their cargo as smuggled goods. The dejected pair goes to the Royale and meets Pree. John tries to raise money by picking pockets, but he and Dutch are soon in a brawl, which is stopped by RAC Agent Joseph Siano. Dutch shoots him in the leg. Then Siano stuns both of them. Hills wants to interrogate them. Dutch and John were dupes for someone wanting to steal poison from Company storage. Dutch points out to Siano that there is an elite assassin on Westerly looking for a high-value target. Dutch makes a deal that John and Lucy can go free after she finds the assassin. The target is at a ten-year retreat on Qresh. Dutch has Lucy lock John in to keep him safe. John talks Lucy into releasing him. Together they seek the assassin and the target. The assassin is targeting John, for blocking her kill. Dutch arrives and takes her down. John has been infected with the poison. Seeing how Dutch cares for John, the assassin gives up the antidote. Joe recruits Dutch for the Killjoys. They both decide to join up. That's also when John gives her the nickname Dutch, short for Dutchess. Khlyen tells Dutch she must find John to help her fight The Lady.