Steve Oxford and Patricia Morgan were living together, but their friends assumed that convenience rather than passion lay behind it, given their history of mutual indifference. In one respect, the conclusion was true. Steve and Pat were free to lead separate lives, and that freedom included Steve's search for a wonder-drug.
The secret of IF had died with its discoverer but Steve was sure that he could rediscover it as an intellectual puzzle. He was able to narrow down the field to 5 bottles of white powder after some research. The first was useful but not what he wanted. The second had no effect. The third speeded up his thought processes by twenty to thirty times.
Steve was beginning to wonder if one of the remaining members of a highly active class of drug might leave him permanently deranged when Pat's sister, Maggie, came to stay. Their brother Jason arrived too to add to Steve's troubles, which were complicated by lingering after-effects from the third drug. The life of a human guinea pig was not running smoothly.