In "Countdown," a brilliant but disgruntled civil servant seeks revenge against the organization and individual he feels relegated him to a low-level laboratory job. He uses his expertise to create a unique biotoxin and then employs mercenaries to hold the water supply of Seattle hostage.
This fast-paced account relates a time-critical strategy conceived by personnel, including the president, to avoid an epic environmental catastrophe and to hold those responsible accountable.
Navy medical researchers are urgently working on the development of an antitoxin while others attempt to prevent the incident from occurring. All of this must be done while avoiding public awareness of the crisis.
As these strategy components proceed concurrently and frantically with roadblocks and complications along the way, an unscrupulous reporter who threatens public release of his sketchy knowledge and a resentful mole within the White House inner circle muddy the situation.