"That's the question, Kate. We don't know the answer, but we have some clues. As you've seen, we know that the Atlantis Plague operates primarily on brain wiring. For a small group of survivors, it seems to strengthen brain wiring. For the remaining survivors, it scrambles it. It kills the rest-apparently those it has no use for. The plague is changing humanity at the genetic level-effectively bioforming us into some desired outcome."
"No but we're close. Our working theory is that the Atlantis Plague is simply a genetic update that attempts to manipulate the Atlantis Gene. It's trying to complete the change in brain wiring that started seventy thousand years ago with the introduction of the Atlantis Gene-the first Great Leap Forward. But we don't know what the endgame is. Is it a second Great Leap Forward-forcing us to advance-or is it a great step backward-a large-scale reversal in human evolution?"
"You don't understand. When the Atlantis Plague hit, over a billion people were infected within twenty-four hours. The governments that didn't topple overnight declared martial law. Then the Immari started mopping up the world. They offered a novel solution: a society of survivors-but only the rapidly evolving ones, what they call 'the chosen.' They started with the southern hemisphere, with high-population nations near Antarctica. They control Argentina, Chile, South Africa, and a dozen others."