Chapter 5 Summary

After fifty years, the day has finally arrived when mankind will see what the Overlords look like. Radio stations spread the word that this is the day. There is only a single ship now, over New York City. Though the supply ships had been real enough, the ships hovering over Earth’s major cities had been illusions. They had simply dissolved the day before. The only real ship had been Karellen’s. No one knows how the illusion was carried out, since radar had detected the ships, but the need for this psychological weapon and the display of force has passed.

As the people watch and wait, they see the ship begin moving westward toward the plains past New York City, moving downward at over a thousand kilometers an hour. All over the world, people watch their television sets, eager to see the aliens after two generations of anticipation. The ship lands, and amazingly the ground does not crack or tremble under its massive weight. Whatever force drove it across outer space is keeping it from resting too heavily on Earth. A curving wall twenty meters above the ground shimmers, revealing a large opening. Nothing is visible inside. A wide, glittering gangway descends. It has no steps but is as smooth as a playground slide. The world waits to see what descends.

Karellen’s voice is heard. He says that there are some children by the foot of the gangway. He would like two of them, a boy and a girl, to come up and meet him. Two children eagerly approach the gangway. Others try to follow, but Karellen chuckles and tells them that he will only need two. A miracle seems to happen as the children are lifted up the slope, their legs motionless and their bodies at right angles to the gangplank. They wave to their parents below, who belatedly think of the Pied Piper. The children disappear into the ship.

The crowd waits silently until Karellen appears at the opening, carrying a child in each arm. A few people faint as they finally see the Overlord. He has black, ebony skin, with leathery wings, small horns, and a barbed tail. He is the very picture of Satan that generations of human beings have visualized as the embodiment of evil. He is tall, and the sunlight gleams on his massive body. The children rest trustingly in his arms, playing with his wings.