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In a diner in the middle of the desert, Elijah Snow sits drinking some of the worst coffee he's ever had only to be confronted by Jakita Wagner. She offers him a job at Planetary where he can disappear from the face of the world, despite having "haunted it" for the past hundred years in return for his special talents and experience. He agrees and the two are picked up by a helicopter.
At the New York office of Planetary, Elijah Snow has cleaned up considerably and Jakita fills him in on the details of why the organization exists. She introduces him to The Drummer, a man who talks to machines, and he explains their mission. They're to go to the Adirondacks and find a hologram entrance to some caves formerly occupied by a Dr. Axel Brass.
On the way to the caves, Jakita explains that Brass was an adventurer who retarded his aging and knows things that history has never recorded. Jakita and Elijah drop into the mountainside and discover Axel Brass, alive and almost well. He recounts a meeting with his colleages in which he showed them the snowflake multiverse, the shape of reality. Together, they attempted to stop the war from their armchairs but accidentally let loose some murderous superheroes that vaguely resemble the Justice League. They airlift him out after finally shutting off the computer that fueled the multiverse image.