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The Hour of Battle
written by "Krenkel, Roy G., 1918-1983"
... These bastards are power-crazy. Seems they've hit all the systems around here, looking for someone to—" "Yeh?" "I've got that a bit wrong," Everset said pleasantly. "They are not so bad." Jones had a quick mind, a suspicious nature and good reflexes. He set the accelerator for all the G's he could take, lay down on the floor and said, "Tell me more." "Come on down," Everset said, in violation of every law of spaceflight. "These guys are all right. As a matter of fact, they're the most marvelous—" That was where the recording ended, because Jones was pinned to the floor by twenty G's acceleration as he boosted the ship to the level needed for the C-jump. He broke three ribs getting home, but he got there. A telepathic species was on the march. What was Earth going to do about it? A lot of speculation necessarily clothed the bare bones of Jones' information. Evidently the species could take over a mind with ease. With Everset, it seemed that they had insinuated their thoughts into his, delicately altering his previous convictions. They had possessed him with remarkable ease. How about Jones? Why hadn't they taken him? Was distance a factor? Or hadn't they been prepared for the suddenness of his departure? One thing was certain. Everything Everset knew, the enemy knew. That meant they knew where Earth was, and how defenseless the planet was to their form of attack. It could be expected that they were on their way. Something was needed to nullify their tremendous advantage. But what sort of something? What armor is there against thought? How do you dodge a wavelength? Pouch-eyed scientists gravely consulted their periodic tables. And how do you know when a man has been possessed? Although the enemy was clumsy with Everset, would they continue to be clumsy? Wouldn't they learn? Psychologists tore their hair and bewailed the absence of an absolute scale for human...

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