When the time came to leave Earth, only three ships were completed in time. What was left of humanity's leadership decided their best chances for the continuation of the species would be to split up. Fortunately, a research outpost had already been established on Mars. Comprised of humankind's best and brightest minds, they were the founders of the Mars Colony. The outpost had already begun terraforming small portions of the planet by developing methods to harvest Mars' subterranean water, and learning to grow crops. Thus, it only seemed logical that Mars would be a destination for one of the three Exodus ships.
When the Soleil Rouge arrived on the red planet, the Mars Colony was not able to accommodate the sheer mass of numbers that arrived with it. At first, their lives continued on the Soleil Rouge while the people quickly worked to expand the colony as per the original colonists' instructions. Eventually, the people aboard the Soleil Rouge began migrating out of the ship and onto the red planet. A way of life began to take shape.
Unfortunately however, not all of the minds that arrived on Mars were enlightened, and some of humanity's old ideologies traveled with them from Earth. The politicians and wealthy people of Earth had also joined the escape. It was not long before they felt their lives in the new colony should be similar to the lofty and luxurious ones they led on Earth. This was not well received by the more practical minded scientists maintaining the colony. Disagreements became quarrels and soon violence followed. The Elites, as the wealthy politicians called themselves, rallied weak minded and foolish followers to their false promises and used them to stir violence and unrest until their demands were met. The conflict lasted for years, and was not without casualty. The scientists were exhausted from fighting the Elite's selfish agendas diplomatically, and so decided to use their knowledge of the colony's infrastructure against them. They limited their supplies of food, water and energy, and used proven psychological methods to diminish their resolve. Eventually, those that followed the Elites turned on their would be usurpers. The Elites were defeated, and their followers admitted to their errant behaviour. They were welcomed back into the community and learned to never again bite the hand that feeds them.
Finally free from the religion and politics of old Earth, they embraced science and reason. The leaders of the colony were chosen based on merit and the accomplishments they had achieved in their respective fields. Using the influx of resources and material the Soleil Rouge provided, the progress in terraforming Mars catapulted forward. Using the enormous ship itself as a central structural element, large domes were erected wherein the atmosphere could be controlled, and human life could not just survive, but thrive. Their cultural focus on education and innovation drove them to countless breakthroughs in technology. They perfected solar energy, and were even able to weaponize it to terraform the planet and protect their biodomes from space debris. Before long, the innovations were no longer just for survival, but to advance their civilization beyond anything that had been accomplished on Earth. As time passed, a sprawling utopian metropolis of tall gleaming towers grew at the site of what was once a simple research outpost.
Much like their city, the people of Mars grew and changed as well. Due to the relatively low gravity of Mars, as compared to Earth, the humans on Mars grew taller. Moreover, they embraced advancements in robotic automation and AI. They employed drones to carry out their tasks, and soon manual labour of any kind became a thing of the past. As a result, they became slender and leanly muscled. The extra time that their drones afforded them was spent towards more research and innovation, and interestingly, cultural pursuits. Music, fashion, art of all forms burst to life as they entered a cultural renaissance. The very city itself evolved as they now had the luxury of time and resources to augment function with exquisite form.
Soon their memories of Earth changed and distorted as well. The people of the utopia created on Mars could not believe their ancestors were the primitive Earthlings documented in their history books. Mars was their home now, and their ideals and egos grew as tall as their towers. What was once a safe refuge and a means for survival, became in their minds the cradle of human civilization anew. As such, their home was known as Rubra Mesopotamia. Affectionately, Red Meso, for short. While they did begin to leave Earth behind in their memories, a small group of researchers never forgot their ancestral home. For the purpose of science, they maintained a close eye on the radiation levels emanating from the planet. Over the millennia they observed a slow and expected rise in levels. However, when the Priming completed, every piece of equipment and surveillance on Mars fired to life. It was clear that a massive transformation had occurred, and nothing they had previously seen in their monitoring or their own hypothetical projections could explain it. This new development had to be studied, and who better to study it than the most erudite and capable of humanity. Suddenly, their collective opinion was that Earth was their birthright; and that confidence quickly became arrogance. They boarded their ships and descended to Earth. They are the Marcolian.