Joe Ledger was the only candidate who was focused and single minded enough to be able to control the mysterious crystal found in Hyperion's space ship. Shortly after he began testing it, it was absorbed into his skin and he lapsed into a coma. In a dream-state, Joe Ledger meets someone who first looks like an old girlfriend, and starts reliving parts of his life.
A doctor named Doctor Norton starts looking for a way to save his life, but General Casey tells him "That crystal will always be our first priority". While Ledger is being moved by ambulance, one of the medical technicians touches the crystal (despite being ordered not to), and turns into a statue of crumbling ash. Later, when the crystal is brought within close proximity to the remains of Hyperion's spacecraft, it releases a blast of energy, blowing a hole in the ground and sending Ledger-- still unconscious-- on an out-of-control flight. In Joe's mind the crystal starts talking to him; the Prism says that it is Power, and Joe likes power. Joe asks the power prism what its mission is: to help Hyperion take over the Earth.