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Basia "Baz" Merton is a welder who lived on Ganymede with his wife Lucia and their three children, Felcia, Jacek, and Katoa. His son Katoa suffered from a rare genetic disorder that was of particular interest to Ganymede pediatrician Dr. Lawrence Strickland due to his work involving the protomolecule.
Basia is a thick-necked man who always smells of peppermint.
While Basia is a traditionally feminine Polish name, Merton was named after his grandmother.
Basia was good friends with Praxidike Meng, a botanist who lived and worked on Ganymede with his daughter Mei. Mei and Basia's son Katoa shared the same immunodeficiency disorder, attended the same school, and were under the care of Dr. Strickland.
Ganymede Incident EditDuring the Ganymede incident, Basia's third child Katoa, who suffered from Myers-Skelton Premature Immunosenescence, was kidnapped to take part in human-protomolecule hybrid experiments. As the conditions on Ganymede deteriorated, Basia resigned to cease the search for his son and decided to escape with his remaining family on the stolen Mao-Kwikowski Mercantile ship Barbapiccola. When he shares his decision with Prax, the upset father of Mei assaults Basia before young Felcia Merton gets between them.
James Holden and Prax later found Katoa's body in a covert lab on Ganymede.
After Basia and his family had lived on the Barbapiccola together with other Ganymede refugees for over a year, probe results started coming back from the first exploration of extra-solar planets on the other side of the newly reactivated ring system in the slow zone. The refugee ship travelled through the ring network and settled on the planet they called "Ilus" before anyone else could claim it.
Basia and his family then became citizens of First Landing on Ilus, working in the planet's lithium mines. Basia never stopped blaming himself for leaving his son behind to die.
When Royal Charter Energy received the charter for mining lithium on Ilus from the United Nations (who called the planet "New Terra"), Basia became part of a resistance and fought to keep the settlers' independence. He was one of the main perpetrators in the destruction of the landing pad that caused the RCE ship Edward Israel's shuttle to crash land, and also took part in the ambush attack that claimed the lives of five RCE security personnel.
After RCE security chief Adolphus Murtry discovered he was involved in the resistance, he arrested him and placed him in UN mediator James Holden's custody. Since Basia had attempted to warn Holden of a resistance plot to assassinate him along with the RCE security, Holden instructed Naomi Nagata and Alex Kamal to treat Basia as a non-hostile in protective custody as they remain in orbit over the planet on the Rocinante.
When Naomi is captured while sabotaging a weaponized Edward Israel shuttle, Basia attempts a rescue.
After the Barapiccola's orbit degrades severely with his daughter Felcia on board, Basia constructs a tether to pull the ship back.
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