When The Impact occurred, there was no warning. Several city blocks in the city of Hangfei were completely destroyed, and a quarter million people lost their lives in less than a minute as a mysterious structure rose up from out of the ashes to loom over the tallest skyscrapers man had ever created.
Fifty years later the occupants of the structure, a race known as the Haan, have emerged and are attempting to coexist in the strange new world they find themselves stranded in. Bargaining with their technology, they have obtained additional settlements inside Hangfei and in turn allowed their host country to enjoy a relatively high quality of life in a world where most are collapsing under the strains of overpopulation, starvation, and disease.
Sam Shao, a twenty year old citizen of Hangfei, was born into a world where the haan are a part of life and the Impact is something read about in textbooks. All she wants is to get by along with her legal guardian Dragan Shao by juggling menial labor jobs and caring for haan infants on the side. The night her life changed, her biggest concern is waiting for Dragan to return from border patrol so they can attend the annual Fangwenzhe street festival together.
When Dragan does return, however, he is on the run from something that happened at the heavily guarded border. He has been pursued through Hangfei by soldiers who were once his comrades, and they have tracked him down claiming he has smuggled a foreign WMD into the city. In the resulting struggle Sam is nearly killed, Dragan is taken from her, and through the genetic receiver implanted in the head of every haan surrogate, she learns something that no one else has noticed. One of the soldiers is a haan masquerading as human.
With little information to go on and the only father she knows lost, Sam is forced to try and track him down while also attempting to locate the missing WMD before it is triggered. She enlists the help of her best friend Vamp and finds a second unlikely ally in the form of Nix, a haan envoy who has been sent to investigate her after the attack. The three follow a thin trail of clues left behind by Dragan after his return, keeping one step ahead of the haan soldier who is determined to not let anyone else learn whatever it was that Dragan discovered - something human and haan alike are willing to kill for.