A convert to Islam sends the U.S. government a tape showing him in three nondescript storage rooms, each of which may contain a nuclear bomb set to detonate in less than a week. Helen Brody, an FBI agent in L.A., is tasked with finding the bombs while a CIA "consultant," known as H, interrogates the suspect who has allowed himself to be caught. The suspect, whose wife and children have left him and disappeared, seems to know exactly what the interrogation will entail. Even as H ratchets up the pressure, using torture over Brody's objection, the suspect doesn't crack. Should H do the unthinkable, and will Brody acquiesce? Is any Constitutional principle worth possible loss of life?