In an act of unfathomable evil, a terrorist cell ignites an aerosol dispersion of spinal meningitis in America. The disease quickly spreads from a small town in Montana to nearly thirty states, eventually affecting more than three million people. It is an epidemic of nation-threatening proportions, but even after patients heal from the initial three-week illness, the nightmare isn’t over.
Instead of death, deafness is the most common effect of spinal meningitis. All those initially stricken heal from most symptoms only to recover unable to hear. The United States is turned inside out, as “victims” scramble to make sense of their lives without the ability to communicate. The terrorists believe they have done the utmost damage—but have they?
Those in power are wracked with worry as to what will become of the United States. An underground government is formed deep beneath the NORAD facilities in Colorado in response to the catastrophic disease. Yet, instead of widespread panic, the deafness epidemic has strange consequences. Is it possible citizens have learned to listen with their hearts instead of their ears?