Matthew Kameron (Loki), Martin Konner, and Mark Kimmer O'Hara are three brothers whose lives have been full of adventure and danger since birth. Having been born on a bush planet, they are not considered citizens and therefore are not allowed to follow their dreams. Under their mother's direction, they become top-notch pirates, stealing in order to purchase their citizenship papers. With one mission left before they can meet this goal, a problem occurs. The IMPs, a militaristic police agency, are hot on their trail, and the only way they can elude them is to jump to an uncharted area of space.
Thus the true story begins in Irene Radford's The Hidden Dragon. On a planet that they believed was uninhabited, the brothers find living beings. Some are human, descendants of colonists that must have come to the planet hundreds of years before. As such stories go, the initial meeting between the brothers and the planet's inhabitants doesn't go well. However, they save a young woman and then find something has landed on their scout ship that cannot possibly exist: a dragon. (L.H.)