Written by human author Drew Karpyshyn, the popular military-historical novel Ascension focuses on several lives warped or destroyed by the human-survivalist cult Cerberus. Following the Citadel attack of 2182 [sic] and the accelerated rise of human influence in the galaxy, Cerberus instituted Ascension, a secret biotics program aimed at producing a super-human warrior. Biotics prodigy Gillian Grayson, a 12-year-old autistic girl, suffered for the sins of her father, a secret Cerberus operative and red sand addict. Paul Grayson was ensnared in a web of criminality involving a quarian traitor and extending to Saren Arterius, the geth, and a terminal threat to the quarian flotilla. Having fled to the Terminus Systems with his daughter after exposure of Cerberus's link to Ascension, Grayson was pursued by Gillian's teacher, scientist Kahlee Sanders, initiating a chain of tragedies that demonstrated Cerberus's nearly-unlimited power and boundless ambition.