In a thrilling masterwork that will make you rethink your perceptions of life and death, New York Times bestselling author James Rollins takes you to the edge of medicine, genetics, and technology, revealing the next evolutionary leap forward: immortality. Galilee, 1025. Infiltrating an ancient citadel, a Templar knight uncovers a holy treasure long hidden within the fortress's labyrinth: the Bachal Isu - the staff of Jesus Christ - a priceless icon that holds a mysterious and terrifying power that promises to change humankind for ever. A millennium later, Somali pirates hijack a yacht off the coast of the Horn of Africa, kidnapping a young pregnant American woman. Commander Gray Pierce is enlisted for a covert rescue mission into the African jungle. The woman is no rich tourist: she's Amanda Gant-Bennett, daughter of the U.S. president. Suspicious that the kidnapping masks a far more nefarious plot, Gray must confront a shadowy cabal which has been manipulating events throughout history...and now challenges the current presidency. Halfway around the world, a firebombing at a fertility clinic in South Carolina exposes a conspiracy that goes back centuries...a scheme that lies within our genetic code. With time against them, SIGMA must race to save an innocent unborn baby whose very existence raises questions about the nature of humanity, asking: Could you live forever? Would you live forever?