|“||Sanctum was colonized by a team from Earth made up of 4 families...||”|
|— Delilah Workman [src]|
Mission Team Alpha was a team from Earth made up of 13 settlers sent by the Eligius Corporation to study the moon, Alpha. They were brought to the site on Eligius III and were led by Russell Lightbourne.
Phase One of the mission was to test whether a settlement could successfully survive on the world. This also included studying the lifeforms on the new world. The second phase was to populate, i.e. to build a sanctuary for the human race. For this reason, the team consisted of the families and embryos were sent to further increase the population. They also used Becca's cybernetic implant technology known as the Memory Drives in order to keep log of their findings.
Mission Team Alpha was the team sent to site Alpha, a moon in a binary star system. Due to the radiation caused by the two suns, members of the team were given Nightblood. This wasn't needed though, as Emori stated that radiation levels were good.
On day 21, Josephine Lightbourne suggests the name "Sanctum" for the moon and her dad agrees. Later, Josephine is hanging out with Gabriel Santiago when they notice the bugs going quiet. The suns are eclipsing and the pair head back to camp. There, Russell Lightbourne is on a murderous rampage, due to the eclipse-induced psychosis. He kills his wife and daughter, and most of the other members.
25 years later, Russell and Gabriel used the Mind Drive technology to resurrect those who were killed, during the first Red Sun eclipse. After Josephine Lightbourne was successfully resurrected, the other members of the team were also resurrected in the new bodies. The Four families, who later become known as the Primes, establish the settlement Sanctum. They built a radiation shield to keep threats out. Their settlement includes many farm fields around a city area with a palace at the center. Gabriel Santiago went a separate way, founding the Children of Gabriel.
After the arrival of Eligius IV, the existence of the Primes becomes known to the people from Earth who discover most of the Primes alive in their current hosts. As conflict erupts, many of the team's hosts are killed with the manipulations of Josephine Lightbourne leading to the complete erasure of Kaylee Lee's family. However, Josephine's struggle with her new host Clarke Griffin leads to the destruction of her consciousness by Clarke.
After Clarke floats most of the Primes, the only survivors of the team are Russell and Gabriel while Priya and Ryker remain dormant. A depressed and suicidal Russell later destroys Priya's Mind Drive before he himself is killed by Sheidheda who had downloaded himself into Russell's Mind Drive, allowing Sheidheda to resurrect himself. With the permanent deaths of Russell and Priya, only Gabriel and Ryker were left still alive or dormant. Gabriel was subsequently killed by Sheidheda, leaving all of the team members dead or dormant. According to Josephine, if the Primes stayed dormant longer, they'll die forever.
Since the mission took place over two hundred years ago, all members of the original mission were presumed deceased until their practice of bodyjacking was discovered.
Notes and Trivia
- Mission Team Alpha brought a thousand embryos that are presumably the ancestors to the Sanctumites living on the moon in 2281.
- The blueprints in Russell Lightbourne's tent are used to create the settlement first seen in "Sanctum".
- According to Josephine Lightbourne in "Nevermind," the last Primes who "went on ice" died forever, implying that there were other Mission Team Alpha members aside from the 13 other members who became the Primes.