PAX Team members consisting of Captain Anthony Vico, Dr. William Scott, and Dr. Allison Crowley are conducting experiments in suspended animation aboard the PAX space station orbiting the earth. PAX discovers that Earth is about to be struck by a large swarm of meteors. In an effort to survive, the PAX space station is placed into an elliptical orbit around the sun which will return the station to an earth orbit in 180 years. Meanwhile, several hundred PAX members on Earth take refuge in underground suspended animation chambers located in the southwest United States. Planet Earth is devastated by the meteor storm, and is forever changed. Once back in Earth orbit, Capt. Vico and crew return to Earth via a shuttle in the hopes of locating and rescuing the remaining members of PAX.
During their expedition, the PAX Team discovers a society that has attempted to achieve immortality by producing clones for use as spare body parts. However, the "originals" are growing weaker, and becoming less able to fight off disease with each succeeding generation of clones. The PAX Team is taken captive for the purpose of using their blood to revitalize the originals. The cloning equipment is destroyed during the escape of the PAX Team, and the population of Eterna dies.
After ten months of travel, and not finding any signs of PAX, the trio discovers an old game preserve that is governed by the descendant of a park ranger, who rules according the "Code of the United States Fish and Wildlife Service." The forest, as well as the game preserve society is threatened by poachers, who hunt in the area. The PAX Team helps the two groups to understand that they need to coexist in order to survive. The trio continues the journey across this strange new world in their search for PAX.
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