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PREFACE The Title story of this volume was written about eighteen months before the outbreak of the war, and was intended to direct public attention to the great danger which threatened this country.  It is a matter of history how fully this warning has been justified and how, even down to the smallest details, the prediction has been fulfilled.  The writer must, however, most thankfully admit that what he did not foresee was the... more...

"You are General James Rothwell?" Rothwell sighed. "Yes, Commander Aku. We have met several times." "Ah, yes. I recognize your insignia. Humans are so alike." The alien strode importantly across the office, the resilient pads of his broad feet making little plopping sounds on the rug, and seated himself abruptly in the visitor's chair beside Rothwell's desk. He gave a sharp cry, and another alien, shorter, but sporting similar, golden fur,... more...

CHAPTER 1 Any man who saw you, or even heard your footsteps must be ambushed, stalked and killed, whether needed for food or not. Otherwise, so long as his strength held out, he would be on your trail. —The Twenty-Fifth Hour,by Herbert Best I was one hundred miles from Nowhere—and I mean that literally—when I spotted this girl out of the corner of my eye. I'd been keeping an extra lookout because I still expected the other... more...

n the dark, our glider chutes zeroed neatly on target—only Art Benjamin missed the edge of the gorge. When we were sure Invader hadn't heard the crashing of bushes, I climbed down after him. The climb, and what I found, left me shaken. A Special Corps squad leader is not expendable—by order. Clyde Esterbrook, my second and ICEG mate, would have to mine the viaduct while my nerve and glycogen stabilized. We timed the patrols. Clyde... more...

HE two rooms were not luxurious, but MacMaine hadn't expected that they would be. The walls were a flat metallic gray, unadorned and windowless. The ceilings and floors were simply continuations of the walls, except for the glow-plates overhead. One room held a small cabinet for his personal possessions, a wide, reasonably soft bed, a small but adequate desk, and, in one corner, a cubicle that contained the necessary sanitary plumbing facilities.... more...


CHAPTER 1 On the morning the radar reported something odd out in space, Lockley awoke at about twenty minutes to eight. That was usual. He'd slept in a sleeping bag on a mountain-flank with other mountains all around. That was not unprecedented. He was there to make a base line measurement for a detailed map of the Boulder Lake National Park, whose facilities were now being built. Measuring a base line, even with the newest of electronic... more...

Chapter 1 I am by birth a Genevese, and my family is one of the most distinguished of that republic. My ancestors had been for many years counsellors and syndics, and my father had filled several public situations with honour and reputation. He was respected by all who knew him for his integrity and indefatigable attention to public business. He passed his younger days perpetually occupied by the affairs of his country; a variety of... more...

In submitting Captain Carter's strange manuscript to you in book form, I believe that a few words relative to this remarkable personality will be of interest. My first recollection of Captain Carter is of the few months he spent at my father's home in Virginia, just prior to the opening of the civil war. I was then a child of but five years, yet I well remember the tall, dark, smooth-faced, athletic man whom I called Uncle Jack. He seemed... more...

ON THE RIVER ISS In the shadows of the forest that flanks the crimson plain by the side of the Lost Sea of Korus in the Valley Dor, beneath the hurtling moons of Mars, speeding their meteoric way close above the bosom of the dying planet, I crept stealthily along the trail of a shadowy form that hugged the darker places with a persistency that proclaimed the sinister nature of its errand. For six long Martian months I had haunted the vicinity... more...

The sight of an Earthman on Vega III, where it was impossible for an outlander to be, brought angry crowds to surround John Crownwall as he strode toward the palace of Viceroy Tronn Ffallk, ruler of Sector XII of the Universal Holy Empire of Sunda. He ignored the snarling, the spitting, the waving of boneless prehensile fingers, as he ignored the heavy gravity and heavier air of the unfamiliar planet. John Crownwall, florid, red-headed and... more...