Ashe first appeared to the party as the rogue resistance member named "Amalia". Disguised as a revolutionary civilian, Ashe was once the princess of Dalmasca. Having lost her kingdom to Vayne and the Archadian forces, she temporarily teamed up with Vaan and company under a common enemy. When the rest of the party gets caught up in her fight, she realizes that she both of their true intentions were far more similar than she had thought.
When Ashe escapes from Bhujerba in order to pursue the Dawn shard at the Dynast-King's tomb, she attempts to take the Strahl. Caught red-handed by both Balthier and Vaan, she makes an unlikely deal with the sky pirate: if he accompanies her to the tomb, she would offer him the treasure of the Dynast-King. Not being satisfied enough, Balthier asks for her wedding ring in order to ensure his payment. With this, she makes a sort of binding contract with the party, but becomes companions with each one of them during their journey.
Ashe and Balthier, on the other hand, have far more in common than one would expect. In the sides notes of Final Fantasy XII: Ultimania Omega the developers noted that one of the key scenes in the game is the conversation between Ashe and Balthier on the Phon Coast; the comparison of their stories is meant to emphasize their common personal themes. For a breif moment, Balthier shares his past with Ashe, and reassure her of position. Balthier had been running away from his father and is unable to face the problems he left behind; Ashe was still pained by the death of her husband and could not escape her desire for revenge. Although the two have very different situations, they share a common ground in that they have trouble letting go of their past, and that they had to confront them, not escape from them.
Balthier: "The choice is yours to make. But don't give your heart to a stone. You're too strong for that, Princess."
Balthier first meets Vaan in an entirely accidental manner: they had both infiltrated the palace at Rabanatre in order to obtain the Dusk Shard, located in the treasury. By an odd chain of events, Balthier decides to recruit Vaan as an aid, but proves to be a more useful comrade throughout the journey and sees his genuine intentions to become a sky pirate. In the end, Balthier makes an unlikely decision by temporarily handing over the Strahl in the care of Vaan.
Vaan had the desire to become a sky pirate just like Balthier did, and Vaan's hold a special admiration towards him. But unlike him, Balthier's choice of occupation were made for somewhat different reasons. Both had wanted to escape a life they owned and did not want; however, where Balthier had everything, Vaan had nothing. Balthier's abandonment meant leaving a life where it would have been dicated by people who have set his destiny in front of him, and, essentially, he would lead a life imprisoned. As an orphan, Vaan's position in a far lower class left him with very little; he had lost everything and would leave nothing behind. Vaan's vision of becoming a sky pirate isn't merely an escape; he had nowhere to go, except up.