Angus Thermopyle was an ore pirate and a murderer; even the most disreputable asteroid pilots of Delta Sector stayed out of his way. Those who didn’t ended up in the lockup – or dead. But when Thermopyle arrived at Mallory’s Bar & Sleep with a gorgeous woman by his side the regulars had to take notice. Her name was Morn Hyland, and she had been a police officer – until she met up with Thermopyle. But one person in Mallory’s Bar wasn’t intimidated. Nick Succorso had his own reputation as a bold pirate and he had a sleek frigate fitted for deep space. Everyone knew that Thermopyle and Succorso were on a collision course. What nobody expected was how quickly it would be over – or how devastating victory would be. It was a common enough example of rivalry and revenge – or so everyone thought. The real story was something entirely different.