In 2148 while working as a Commercial telepath for Interplanetary Expeditions in San Diego, Mr. Raskov comes into contact with some alien artefacts that IPX had discovered scattered across Syria Planum on Mars. Raskov quickly becomes obsessed with the objects, making numerous sketches of various insects. Raskov asks Dr. Phillip Stoddard to let him touch the artifacts again, but Stoddard refuses. After lifting the access codes for the vault from Stoddard's mind, Raskov later attempts to break in but trips a security alarm. Fearing for the profits involved, Raskov is murdered and his death made to look like stroke.