2105, September: Intelligence Analyst Caine Riordan uncovers a conspiracy on Earth's Moon - a history-changing clandestine project - and ends up involuntarily cryocelled for his troubles. Twelve years later, Riordan awakens to a changed world. Humanity has achieved faster-than-light travel and is pioneering nearby star systems. And now, Riordan is compelled to become an inadvertent agent of conspiracy himself. Riordan's mission: travel to a newly settled world and investigate whether a primitive local species was once sentient - enough so to have built a lost civilization. However, arriving on site in the Delta Pavonis system, Caine discovers that the job he's been given is anything but secret - or safe. Discovering new dangers at every turn, Riordan must now convince the powers-that-be that the only way for humanity to survive as a free species is to face the perils directly - and to fight fire with fire.