Eighteen years after the students were released from Idlewild Academy, the six survivors have become adults and put down roots in the depopulated world. Three settlements separated by philosophies cooperate to survive the elements and raise the next generation, with Black Ep's resurgence always a possibility. In Europe, Vashti and Champagne raise metahuman children to fight the plague and rekindle Renaissance civilization. In Africa, Isaac focuses on preserving the spirit of humanity and the ancient world. Halloween keeps his own company in North America.
Nick Sagan's Edenborn
is the 2004 sequel to Idlewild
. It was followed by Everfree
. As with the first volume in the series, spoilers abound below.
This work provides examples of:
- Abduction Is Love: Deuce to Penny. Lucky for him, she's absolutely into it.
- The Amazon: Site of the field trip.
- Artificial Intelligence: Malachi.
- Bittersweet Ending: Halloween ends his hermitage and there is hope for a cure for Black Ep, which would mean the return of civilization. On the other hand, Pandora is crippled, five of the next generation are dead, and two more are on ice.
- Body Surf: Dr. Hyoguchi's proposal, though he wasn't the only one.
- Clones Are People Too: Deuce. To the original's surprise but eventual acceptance.
- Cloning Blues: Haji. His father fully intended to use him and his siblings as vessels, but only Haji carries the burden of knowledge.
- Comically Missing the Point: Deuce and fire safety.
- Crapsack World: After Black Ep and twenty years of neglect, the world ain't pretty. Apes as a family have been wiped out and nature is reclaiming civilization.
- Cyberspace: Immersive Virtual Reality is still up and running, albeit only in Germany and with a heavy hand from Vashti
- Deadly Prank: Hessa's death, as it turns out.
- Designer Babies: The Waterbabies.
- False Soulmate: Deuce's eventual realization.
- First Love: Deuce and Penny.
- Grand Romantic Gesture: Abused to hell and back by Deuce, who is lonely and desperate to form a romantic connection.
- The Hermit: Halloween.
- Hidden Eyes: Deuce, during his brief confinement at Vashti's.
- Hiding Behind Religion: Isaac, practitioner of the Path of Inspiration below.
- Last Request: Penny to Deuce, but the worst possible one.
- Logical Weakness: The Ten seem to have overcome their allergies from the first book, but the women have determined that pregnancy is impossible due to their antiviral defenses.
- Mondegreen: In-universe, Penny claims her name was from a Lung Butter lyric "play Penelope", actually "play the melody." It's unclear whether she reached this on her own or if Champagne misinformed her.
- Parents as People: Most of the parents are too distracted with their own issues to be the caregivers the children probably need.
- Vashti and Champagne see maintaining humanity as their highest goal. Thus they raise many children but don't spend too much energy on any one of them, which leads to tensions between Penny and her siblings. Vashti spends most of her time researching; Champagne spends hers on studying and composing artwork.
- Isaac sees the spirituality of humanity as a key component of its revival and does not accept rebellion against his fundamentalist principles. This drives a wedge between him and his teenage son, as well as between his fundamentalist oldest child and the younger siblings.
- Halloween teaches his son all the skills that Halloween needed to survive. He does not adapt to the circumstances around them, nor does he train Deuce to address novel situations.
- Path of Inspiration: Isaac is raising his children as religious fundamentalists not because he thinks it's best, but because religious belief is helpful in overwriting their minds with the brain scans of dead people.
- Pride: Penny's defining trait.
- Pyro Maniac: Deuce, but not a malicious one.
- Rule of Romantic
- Deuce wooing Penny long-distance.
- Later, Penny manipulating Deuce.
- Self-Induced Allergic Reaction: Penny playing for drama.
- Sliding Scale of Parent-Shaming in Fiction:
- Type II: Halloween. He gave Deuce too much freedom and not enough judgment or socialization, resulting in two deaths and almost a third.
- Type III: Champagne and Vashti. Champagne withdraws from childrearing whenever it becomes difficult, and Vashti is amoral and manipulative to further her goals.
- Spy Satellites: Pandora and Malachi against Halloween.
- Sterility Plague: The antiviral defenses that preserve the women against Black Ep also prevent them from conceiving.
- Switching P.O.V.: Characters get signature styles in their back-and-forth chapters.
- Penny's chapters appear as titled journal entries.
- Haji's chapters are introspective and contain no quotations, instead documenting his reception of dialogue.
- Deuce's chapters are scattered and frenetic.
- Token Religious Teammate: Isaac, to the Ten.
- Unreliable Narrator: chapter-specific due to Switching P.O.V..
- Penny's take on the world is quite slanted toward her own ego.
- Even Deuce isn't capable of tracking and understanding his own actions.
- Uterine Replicator: The only effective method of reproduction.
- Youth Is Wasted on the Dumb: Deuce and Penny again.