The events of this story started in 2210, 50 years after a devastating climate war. For decades, battles raged to gain control over the supply of water. A devastated earth and billions of dead were left behind. Humanity had brought itself to the brink of total collapse.
The threat of extinction created the first truly global society, led by the United Nations. But despite desperate efforts, humanity's survival on the devastated earth was no longer guaranteed.
In this phase an unknown signal reached the earth. The source of the signal was traced to a probe on the outer edge of the solar system. It became immediately clear that the signal was of extraterrestrial origin. Finally, a linguist was able to decipher the extraordinary radio signal.
The music-based message from the so-called "strangers" provided the coordinates of a solar system in a branch of the Perseus arm of the Milky Way: Seven planets orbit a dwarf star, the fourth of these planets is an Earth-like planet - called "Hope".
The message from the strangers also contained plans for a new spaceship propulsion system that would allow a ship to reach extremely high speeds, thus making it possible to travel to the second Earth. Thirdly, it contained plans for a neuromuscular implant, simply called "the device". The device enables humans to withstand the enormous G-forces generated by the new propulsion system over a long period of time.
In a global effort, a spaceship - the Laniakea (Boundless Sky) - was built and around 1000 people from every corner of the earth were sent on the journey to the new earth. It was a journey of no return, as the flight to the second Earth took several decades, even with the new propulsion of the strangers. After their arrival in the new solar system and waking up from cryosleep, most of the crew settled on Hope.
A higher-ranking UN panel on Earth planned the contact with the aliens. To finally meet the rescuers was not the only motivation of the committee members. They also hoped to gain access to the aliens' advanced technology. Excellent field scientists and engineers were selected for this challenging mission. First contact with the aliens was to be made on Mirnah. Mirnah, a moon which has the size of Mars, orbits a gas giant in the new solar system. Mirnah is almost completely covered by water except for a few volcanic islands.
A first team travelled to Mirnah in a smaller space shuttle to find the mysterious gates of Mirnah, which the strangers spoke of in their message. Unfortunately, communication with this team was lost several hours after their arrival. Contrary to all expectations, the strangers made no contact with the humans.
Therefore one of the backup teams was sent to Mirnah to complete the mission and rescue the lost team. One of them is Mason, who travels down to the mysterious strangers' facility. Lucy will remain in orbit around Mirnah to overwatch the entire operation.