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In the year 2002, the economy has taken a sharp downturn, there's a new report of a sniper attack downtown nearly every day, and Dick Cheney's first term in office has quickly turned the US into a totalitarian state. Despite all of that, Nina feels blessed to escape poverty after graduating college and getting a high-salary job, along with moving into a cozy DC apartment with her attractive, driven boyfriend. But when Konrad becomes violent and delusional, he drugs Nina with x-2317—a compound that changes both their lives. Overnight, they gain superhuman strength and intelligence—and become pawns in a multidimensional game where their every move is manipulated by two opposing forces.

Meanwhile, Blake Rice, an ex-SEAL, and his protégé are on a cross-state killing spree, and no one knows why. They've made no demands, and their targets seem random. No one knows who they are or why they've suddenly become so violent. No one, that is, but the creators of x-2317.

When the paths of these four pawns cross, it's up to Nina to end the game before the other players distribute a derivative of x-2317 worldwide. The more she fights to get out, the more she learns just how far-reaching the influence of the omnipresent game masters is. Faster, stronger, and smarter than ever before, can Nina find a way to end this game and keep her family safe before Konrad, or whoever is manipulating him, uses synthetic heroin to destroy the entire country?

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