"Strike" is the first episode of Season One of Zero Hour and the first episode overall. It was released for online viewing on the ABC series webpage on February 1, 2013 and was broadcast February 14th, 2013 on ABC.
In 1938 in Germany, the Rosicrucians prepare to hide a secret from the Nazis. Involved is the manufacture of twelve clocks. A priest and another man go to hospital operated by the Nazis. They find a newborn infant with nearly colorless irises. The two men are discovered and flee, but one drops his Rosicrucian cross. As the Nazis prepare to raid the church used by the Rosicrucians, an SS officer carrying a Rosicrucian cross arrives at the church and warns his brothers. The Rosicrucians remove a large object with a cross on top from the church and load it onto a truck, which is driven away.
Hank and Laila Galliston are wandering through a flea market in New York City. They separate; Laila purchases an antique clock and Hank returns to the offices of his magazine, Modern Skeptic. While Hank is working on the next issue, Laila calls to say that someone has broken into the shop. Hank learns that Laila has been abducted.
After Hank returns home and is discussing the abduction with two of his employees, Arron Martin and Rachel Lewis, Rebecca Riley of the Federal Bureau of Investigation arrives. Rebecca shows the others footage of Laila being abducted by a known terrorist identified as White Vincent. When Rebecca seems more interested in Laila than in Vincent, Hank tells her to leave. She gives her business card to Hank.
Hank sees the clock that Laila bought. He opens it and finds a diamond. When light is shone on the diamond a map is projected on the wall. None of the three can read the language in the map and Hank takes images to Father Mickle, a local priest and boyhood friend. Mickle tells Hank that the language is an ancient one last known to have been used in the second century. Rachel points out that the map is of the western hemisphere. Mickle translates the writing as "New Bartholomew." Hank receives a cell phone call from Vincent, who says he will exchange Laila for the clock. Vincent also tells Hank that he is not "Henry David Galliston" and refers to Hank as "my brother."
Mickle convinces Hank to trade the clock for Laila but to keep the diamond. Hank agrees and gives the diamond to Mickle for safekeeping. Hank meets with Rebecca Riley and other FBI agents. He tells Rebecca that Vincent wants money. She does not believe him. Hank goes through the motions of meeting with Vincent, who is revealed to have set up a false meeting to distract the FBI while he follows and assaults Mickle, stealing the diamond.
Hank, Arron and Rachel return to the magazine office where Rachel convinces Hank to follow the lead to the "New Bartholomew" in the Canadian tundra. Hank orders the two to remain in New York and research other options. When he arrives at the airport, Rebecca Riley is waiting for him. She tells him that Vincent is responsible for her husband's death and convinces him to let her accompany him. Back at the office, Arron identifies the maker of the clock as Norbert Peter Steinke and finds that he lives in Bavaria, Germany.
Vincent is in an unidentified hotel room where he has unaccountably destroyed a modern clock. Standing in front of the bathroom mirror, he scratches a "0" into the glass then removes a contact lens, revealing that he has at least one nearly colorless iris.
Hank and Rebecca hire an aircraft to take them to the spot on the map marked "New Batholomew." It turns out to be a German submarine frozen in the ice just offshore. Aboard the submarine, they discover several dead men, one of whom appears to be a carbon copy of Hank.
Against Hank's orders, Arron and Rachel fly to Bavaria and meet with the elderly Norbert Peter Steinke. After learning that blood has been spilled, Steinke reveals that the Nazis had discovered the secret of eternal life, thus making God irrelevant. In response, the Church appointed twelve New Apostles and gave them a secret of which not even the Pope was aware. One of them, designated as New Bartholomew, was the SS officer who warned the Rosicrucians about the impending raid. The twelve scattered to keep the secret from the Nazis.
Back at the submarine, White Vincent approaches across the tundra in an all-terrain vehicle. Laila's whereabouts are not clear.