"A red horse went out and to him who sat on it, it was granted to take peace from the earth"
The Age of Heroes is gone, snuffed out before most people even knew it had come. It ended in the fire and fury of a global war - The Gene War - and the great purge that followed. It took earth's mightiest champions and in some ways the earth's hope. The worst, however, was yet to come.
"And behold, a black horse and he who sat upon it held a pair of scales in his hands."
Humanity’s judgement has come. It did not come with the end of the heroes. It did not announce itself with the thunder of war, nor the lightning flash of atomic fire as many thought it might. It crept in slowly and quietly, slipping through cities full of people too caught up in their own worlds to notice the silences and voids amid the bustle and din of life.
"And behold, an ashen horse and he who sat on it had the name Death; and Hell followed him."
The genophage got into everything: air, water, soil. It spread to every corner of the globe. There was no cure. The result was not a tide of mass death but rather the absence of life. Birth rates plummeted. Schools shut, and the echo of children's laughter disappeared.
It has been twenty years since the last known live birth of a genetically human child. The only new people are mutants whose genetic X-factor seems to make them immune to the Phage. Most of those are clones or hybrids created from genetic material found in strange ‘arks’ hidden around the world. As the mutants rise again, so too do heroes wielding powers beyond the ken of mortal men.
Are these champions the guardians of a new era for Earth, or the harbingers of the final darkness?
"And behold, a white horse... and a crown was given to him, and he went forth as a conqueror."
The Age of Heroes may yet come again, if the world does not destroy itself first. Whichever happens, though, this much seems true:
These are the last days of humankind.
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