The year is 507 UA, and mankind has taken to the stars. Vast, glistening spaceships slide overhead day and night, their chrome hulls reflecting back bustling cities of glass and exosteel. They carry shipments of alien spices, diocrystals, carnivorous plants -- any of a thousand bizarre luxuries, colors and scents otherworldly, packed into vacuum-sealed casks and stowed beneath the feet of passengers who hail from ten thousand different planets. New Tokyo is a city of cultural exchange, where at any moment, at any corner, there is something happening, something to see.
Procyon VII, on the other hand, is a backwater settlement in the middle of nowhere on the homogeneous icy wastes of Gamma Omicron Pi, which is itself a planet spinning through the vast emptiness of space some significant distance from anything interesting, dull enough that even the miners who set up their shantytown there never bothered to give it a name besides its galactic designation. The main (only) street boasts a shabby hotel, a shabbier spaceport, the deep shaft down to the dilithium mine, and an immense hangar where spaceships can be repaired and replenished.
There is also, of course, a bar. This is where Jean is lounging, in studied disarray. He is not drunk -- not yet -- but he is not on his first drink of the night, either.