Frank Mackenzie didn't foresee meeting his young prodigy of a professor during a police raid on a seedy bar. Doctor Col Courtland didn't expect his brightest new graduate student to be a blue-collar widower scarred by the Battle of the Bulge. Neither of them anticipated the complications of academic careers conducted beneath the unsympathetic gaze of the F.B.I. Life in experimental physics may have grown much more exciting for everyone at Clarence Tenn Polytechnic since the Manhattan Project, but Frank and Courtland share illegal desires that make exciting lives dangerous. As the race for the H-Bomb begins and the Red Scare looms, the pair's intellectual triumphs and strengthening friendship are both threatened by the attraction growing between them. They will need to be brilliant in new ways if they expect to overcome the one threat that moves faster than the speed of light.