The reader first meets Rapp while he is doing a covert operation in Iran and he discovers a possible terrorist attack planned for the nation's capital to happen in the near future. Meanwhile, in Washington, D.C., Anna Rielly is starting her first day as a White House correspondent for NBC. It also so happens to be the day where the terrorist, using a secret entrance, takes over the White House and holds it hostage.
The president, who barely escaped the hostage situation remains trapped in the unfinished bomb shelter. With the vice president using this opportunity as commander in chief to glorify his political career being lenient towards the terrorist demands, Rapp must find a way to fight the terrorists from the inside of the White House. It is here where he saves Anna Rielly from being raped by one of the terrorists and their relationship, which will be seen throughout the later books, begins.
Several Navy SEALs sneak into the White House, eliminate the terrorists, and save the hostages and the president. The leader of the terrorist group manages to escape the White House while detonating his strategically placed explosives. He is later found in South America only to be killed by Rapp.