Diplomat Lauren Knight arrives at Slayton Station for a temporary assignment, only to find the embassy in chaos. Meanwhile, the local Troika is having political problems of their own as they prepare for a major job.
The Pacifica hurtled through space towards Slayton. Stars drifted lazily across the display, and Lauren checked the time. They were only three hours out from docking, and she still hadn’t received any kind of turnover from the previous Diplomat.
Sergei woke to the smell of smoke. It took him a second to regain his bearings. The rattling he’d grown used to during the shuttle ride from Terra was conspicuously missing, and the air smelled like machine oil instead of ozone.