In a technologically advanced galaxy torn apart by war and strife, powerful beings known as Adults command enormous respect. On his world, Ikara is the ‘First’, the title given to the most powerful Adult on a planet. His mission is to track down and train gifted beings from other worlds in an ambitious attempt to civilise the Galaxy. After many disenchanted journeys to war-torn planet Earth to identify a suitable candidate, Ikara finally discovers enormous potential in Samuel, a small-town lawyer. He transports Samuel to the spaceship at his disposal for this mission and begins Samuel’s training to become an Adult. The training is simple. Ikara will just give Samuel a story, and in the giving, all will be revealed. But this is no simple tale told from one being to another. This story will be mind transferred, a process with all the punch of reality, and Samuel will have to live through the story as though he was in it. The story is of Doneel, the founder of the Adult movement, who lived on a world that had been torn apart by a war lasting a thousand years. His is a time of extreme violence, where death is in every corner. If Samuel can survive the story, he will become the most powerful human in history. If he does not, he will be dead.