The Bright Future

"The future - the one we were in, anyway? On the surface it was beautiful. Incredible, everything we ever dreamed of. But there were cracks under the surface like you wouldn't believe"
Helena Dean — Tall Orders and Impossible Things

The Road to Redemption

The Bright Future is a realization of the term, "the end justifies the means." While this is a future where the Evolved and Non-Evolved coexist peacefully, where New York has been restored from the brink of chaos, it is a bright future built on the broken backs of those who came before.

In this future, a Global 500 company known as the Pineheartst Company controls much of the world's growing biological engineering developments, and made in large part the restoration of New York City possible with sizable donations of technology and funding.

Pinehearst is headed by philanthropist billionaire Arthur Petrelli and his son Peter Petrelli. The corporation, among its many research responsibilities, also acts as an organization designed to understand and aid the Evolved along their shaky first steps to cohabitation with the rest of the world, and to an extent this is exactly what they do.

However, Pinehearst has a more morally ambiguous underbelly that does not reflect well upon its prestigious facade. In the past, the corporation experimented on involuntary test subjects to forward its genetic research into the Evolved. And in perfecting their formula, has licensed use of it to United States Government agencies such as FRONTLINE.

The world at large is unaware of the formula's existence, or that Pinehearst effectively bought its political clout with this research. Despite their amoral means to achieve their goals, however, Pinehearst has assisted two presidential offices with the overseeing of Evolved relations.

No one single source of information sums up this future better than the unprinted documentation of an Associated Press author who had his work silenced. Compiled from assorted news media, it was meant as an introspective look back at the last ten years. However, the author found himself in legal hot waters when he attempted to use the fluff-piece to expose government secrets to the general public. This blog post was active for less than 24 hours before it was taken down by the federal government, and evidence of it silenced in the national media under necessity of state secrets.

The author was not imprisoned for his writings; however no information pertaining to what was found in this document ever resurfaced again.

Document 678110-AC3 — Sealed as National Security Risk. May 9th, 2019

And So It Came To Pass…

Slouching Towards the Apocalypse

In late 2008, the world as we knew it was in a pretty bad shape. Pro-Evolved and Anti-Evolved sentiments were burning a hole into our collective heads on every single evening news broadcast, we heard terms like terrorist and extremist thrown out like they were going out of style.

The beginning of the end really started when the government took down PARIAH in a blaze of glory and fireworks that had a body count to make most Hollywood blockbusters hang their head in shame. Everyone might have been able to keep their cool, we had a Pro-Evolved president who seemed like a pretty progressive guy, maybe everything wasn’t so bad after all.

Then the scandal came out where Allen Rickham just… stepped down. He walked away from the most important seat of power right when it was in his grasp, and it left the world shaking their heads. So while 2008 crumbled away into 2009, we were all left wondering -– when will the next shoe drop?

Boy did that shoe drop.

It was only January when everything really and truly went to hell in a handbasket. An Anti-Evolved paramilitary organization based out of Europe ended up making a series of terrorist attacks on New York as a part of a plan to release a viral weapon into the atmosphere that –- we found out nearly five years later -– would have wiped out over ninety percent of the world’s population in ten short years.

But it wasn’t the US government that stopped everything from going tits-up, it was a group of unregistered evolved freedom-fighters called Phoenix. These people were rewarded for their efforts by being dragged by the hair into the custody of the Department of Homeland Security’s darkest secret, the Moab Federal Penitentiary -– imagine a Guantanamo Bay with claws and fangs and the clap and you kind of have the right idea.

The public at large gets fed this story that Evolved terrorists were responsible, and New York gets locked down under martial law for two months. The National Guard gets called in, and we have soldiers in the streets, food riots, rolling blackouts, arson, mass suicides of people who are Evolved and terrified of what kind of monster they might be.

During this chaos, Nathan Petrelli sneaks in as President of the United States, and appoints a military-brat bigot Andrew Mitchell as his veep. The world just shrugs it off as a turn for the better, and we’re all about to get the biggest five-finger slap across the face ever.

By the end of March, the situation in New York is so bad that the entire state is considered a disaster area, and the Army is called in to restore order. The suicide rates keep going up as people are too afraid to Register because people in the registry are finding themselves murdered -– be it by spooky serial killers like the Reaper (who was never caught) or wackjob anti-evolved groups like Humanis First! Fine bunch of people they are.

Come the beginning of April, the global economy has nearly crashed from the resulting chaos spreading out from America’s worsening financial and social situation. April 16th marked the beginning of the worst of the violence in the United States, when Humanis First! Began a campaign of suicide bombing in hospitals and shelters that welcomed the Evolved.

President Petrelli calls for unity among the citizens of America, and the rest of the world watches on as America burns. But like they say, it always gets worse before it gets better.

Who Needs A Grassy Knoll?

Sometime around July of 2009, an anonymous informant leaks information to the national news media about an organization operating within the United States government called “The Company,” a couple of fringe news outlets report about this clandestine organization, but the major media outlets refuse to cover the story.

People just didn’t believe it, not until the shaky alliances for the United States government with the Company are stained to the breaking point. Most un-enlightened people aren’t even aware of this still, but word gets around that a member of the Company absconds with the lion’s share of their private research and crippling information, about how they happened to develop that super-virus that nearly killed all of us when they forgot to lock their little treasure chest.

This all culminates in a government disassociation with the Company in the August of 2009 after it is discovered that agents of Homeland Security were secretly plants by the Company seeking to subvert government control.

A former Company agent named Roger Goodman gets interviewed on national television by CNBC anchor Nancy Redfield, and Goodman reveals Jonathan's existence anonymously to the federal government, along with the name of nearly 100 other Company employees secretly working in branches of the US Government.

This is the first step towards the collapse of the Company, and Roger absconds with decades of research from the Company while the government turns on its former allies. This firestorm is followed up by a declaration that the Company is an illegally operating organization by the US Government and demands that they shut down their offices.

This all hits the media in a fiery shit-storm that actually makes everyone stop killing each other for just a minute to see what Big Brother is doing behind their backs. With the revelation hitting all of the major media outlets that the Company has been bagging, tagging and cataloging the Evolved for over twenty years, people are notably a bit freaked out.

Where the first riots happened is hotly debated, even all these years after the fact. But it’s believed that Seattle Washington’s Space Needle explosion was where it all really began. Anti-Government sentiment actually united the people together long enough to start smashing in heads that weren’t their own, but it started to tear the country apart at the seams.

All across the United States, outrage at the revelation that the Company was working with the US government was threatening to start up what could have been the next American Civil War, but then the biggest bomb since Midtown got dropped -– and nobody even had to die this time.

Digging Out of the Hole

With the United States Government has turned on the Company, a man who faked his own death –- Arthur Petrelli — steps out of hiding and proposes a meeting with the media to discuss the Company and Pinehearst, outing Nathan as a figurehead manipulated by the Company's founders.

In September of 2009 In a closed-doors meeting with members of Congress and the Supreme Court, Arthur secretly reveals the presence of a formula designed by his company Pinehearst that can make any Tom, Dick or Harry have super powers, and offers it to the US government, along with all of the private and clandestine information of the Company. No one on the street finds out what goes on in this meeting, but the ripples from it turn into tidal waves that crash down on every city around the world.

Just when the media war-drums were pounding their loudest, the public gets the biggest shock of all –- Nathan Petrelli and Daniel Linderman, along with Nathan’s harpy of a mother Angela Petrelli, orchestrated the entire destruction of Midtown as some sick plan to reveal the existence of the Evolved to the world and set the country on some grand conspiracy of a direction, and that they had utilized a technopath to rig Nathan’s landslide Senate election in 2006.

Arthur Petrelli reveals himself to be a compassionate and unwilling participant in all of this, who had to fake his own death for fear of being silenced for what he knew. Nathan, Angela and Daniel are given the quickest trials known to man, and Daniel Linderman along with Angela Petrelli are sentenced to death for treason, while Nathan Petrelli ends up getting sixteen consecutive life-sentences in the Moab Federal Penitentiary.

It’s a biting moment of irony where the man who had the prison built gets to sleep in its walls. I hope he likes the amenities.

The US Government enters into a reluctant coalition with Pinehearst redrafts the FRONTLINE proposal originally put forth to Congress by Senator Andrew Mitchell, which quickly passes through the current administration. Members of Frontline are pulled from Evolved members of the military, law enforcement and Special Forces, along with synthetically-enhanced non-evolved who are awakened to their power, out of the public eye, by Pinehearst.

From The Ashes

By January of 2011, the US Federal Government moves in against the Company, making countless arrests across the United States, with further extraditions made through the UK and France.

During this time, President Andrew Mitchell –- who somehow managed to jump through enough fiery hoops to ascend to the Presidency from his veep status attempts to save face in the light of all of this turmoil by giving Presidential Pardons to the members of the freedom-fighting organization, Phoenix, who were unlawfully imprisoned in the Moab Federal Penitentiary, and begins an investigation into the other imprisoned Evolved.

The News media latches on to Helena Dean, Phoenix’s leader, and she’s made out to be the Joan of Arc of the new millennium. She and the members of Phoenix are globally recognized for their involvement in the defeat of the anti-evolved paramilitary nutjobs on October 15th, 2010 and we the fine people of the world finally find out we were all nearly killed in a viral holocaust. For their efforts, the members of Phoenix are awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom for their service to their Country the Monday following Thanksgiving.

Lionized in the media, Helena Dean and the members of Phoenix become instant celebrities and national heroes overnight, and suddenly everyone starts looking at the Evolved differently. They’re seeing these kids, the ones they used to call terrorists, in a whole new light.

The really violent, racist bastards like Humanis First! Keep shaking their fist in the air, but they lose a lot of steam and momentum once the Phoenix kids start making the rounds on the news. You know what they say though, they you can’t keep a good skinhead down.

On May 18th, 2011, Helena Dean is killed in a suicide bombing by members of Humanis First! along with thirteen others during a speech she was giving at Columbia University in New York. Immediately following this, the United States Government begins rounding up members of Humanis First! and throwing them in prisons until the situation calms down.

How’s it feel?

Our Future’s So Bright We Gotta’ Wear Shades

By June of 2011, Primatech –- the Company -– has been decimated, and the United Nations begins moving on the surviving members and facilities around the world, backed by United States FRONTLINE agents.

Having freed his son Peter Petrelli and having both imprisoned Angela and Nathan for their involvement in the Kibry Plaza incident, Arthur spends the next several years working with his son to better the standing of the Evolved in the public eye.

In August of 2011 both he and Peter actively take part in a re-drafted version of what was once known as the Linderman Act, retitled as the Unity Act.

While the going is tough, society is slowly acclimated towards the understanding and education of the Evolved in daily life, and on September 17th, 2011 Arthur Petrelli displays a miraculous gift to the world, by turning the irradiated ruins of Manhattan with the help of his son, into a lush and verdant forest by means of one of his myriad powers.

While the scars of New York are healed, behind the scenes, Arthur and Peter continue to offer up the Formula to the US Government to keep its cache of Evolved Soldiers at an acceptable level, and somehow in all of this an equilibrium is maintained, and the world finally settles in to a peaceful state.

On November 6th, 2011 the new forest growing at the heart of Midtown is named the Unity National Park, and a memorial garden for the fallen lost in the destruction of Midtown is erected.

Shortly thereafter, the United States government reveal to the public that Gabriel Gray — AKA Sylar — was framed for the destruction of Midtown Manhattan and the string of serial killings across the United States, and a story is concocted where the Company used and manipulated Theodore Sprague into destroying Midtown while using this conspiracy as a foothold to attempt to wrest control of the United States over from the people.

Those of us who know the real truth don’t speak up, we let Peter keep his peace of mind, and we let the old wounds heal.

Making Darwin Proud

December 2011 marks the opening of the first Evo-Co (Slang for Evolved College) in the United States at the Columbia University in New York City, just nine weeks following the opening of the first Evolved College in the world in Kyoto Japan. While Evolved Colleges aren't separate institutions for learning, but rather Colleges and Universities that offer Evolved-Education in addition to their current curriculum.

The United States Government institutes the Chesterfield Scholarship, giving financial aid to all willing Evolved who register under the unity act to attend these special schools. Incentives for registered evolved to enter the United States armed forces and other government branches is just a precursor to what would come next.

One of Us, One of Them

The next few years show a marked decline in Evolved/Non-Evolved violence, and the world really starts to shape up. By the beginning of 2012 the global economy has finally shaped back up, and with the Evolved no longer having to hide what they are, some truly miraculous things begin to become reality.

In February of 2012 the Unity Act is amended. Originally, it kept all information on Evolved strictly private, accessible only under certain precisely-defined circumstances; the amendment gave provision first for Evolved to choose to make personal and contact information public, and in so doing to take advantage of the second section of the amendment: making money by way of their abilities. A notable example of this act's effect can be seen in how hospitals around the country clamor for Evolved with abilities that even remotely relate to healing, paying seven figure salaries to these miracle-healers as part of a government-backed financing for the betterment of the world.

On June 20th of 2012, The Zarek Group (formerly the Linderman Group, following a hostile takeover by one of its principal members) purchases Staten Island from the United States Government, beginning a plan to clean up the island.

By December 2012, the Zarek Group has officially allowed the FRONTLINE organization to move their headquarters from Fort Lee New Jersey to Staten Island New York, effectively dropping the world’s most elite Evolved fighting force into a hive of scum and villainy.

Needless to say, the crooks scatter like cockroaches to a flicked on bathroom light.

When 2013 finally rolls around, the Evolved have integrated themselves into nearly 100% of the United States workforce, military and government agencies. The United States becomes the poster-child for Evolved/Non-Evolved relationships as the rest of the world moves to follow suit.

Onwards and Upwards

By 2019, the world has begun to accept the changes presented to them during the turbulent end of 2006. With registration under the Unity Act voluntary, much of the social disorder of the past ten years is a thing of the past.

The world finally sees us for what we are — people with a unique gift to share with the world.

West Rosen, Associated Press
May 8th, 2019

Additional Information

For even more information on the Bright Future, you can check out the A Sound of Thunder Index Page which includes a cast of characters who appeared in the year 2019.

Logs from the Bright Future

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