Ben Cane has outlived the world, and so he waits for his ailing grandchild to deliver his execution in the center of that room surrounded by glass walls. Every bone in his body throbs with arthritis. His guts burn after so many rounds of chemotherapy and radiation. And mercy is the last thing Ben desires at the end of the world.

Mallory Cane resists the urge to cry as the projectors knit glory all around her. She knows that all of the worlds the vision chamber shows her have long gone extinct. None of the laughing hyenas remain. No more elephants shrill. The eagles no longer soar. Not a single domesticated dog or cat remains to nuzzle with Mallory when her illness brings suffering. She understands that the vision chamber offers only illusion and heartbreak, and yet her father forces her to look upon the color that glowed before the world was wasted. He tells Mallory that she must be made strong, and that she must remember all that has been lost. He tells Mallory that she must prepare herself to punish that generation that did nothing as the world faded to gray.


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