There were no objects distant and unrecognizable on the horizon, no people who spoke, in voices tinged with madness, of having been kidnapped by unseen creatures, no armada of stars filling the night skies above. One day they were not there and the next they were, with no sign of how they had done so. There was no panic, no riots in the streets, or calls to arms, for it was obvious to all there would be no point to it. They were among them, walking the streets and going about their business as if they had always been there.
No one even thought it particularly strange, though on some distant level, deep within their consciousness, they knew it was. They were aliens and they had seized the planet without so much as a word of defiance. How had it happened? Something must have occurred. Something terrible and awful, to make them surrender so completely. But no one seemed to know. This was the way it had always been, they said, even as they knew it was not so.
It was difficult to describe the invaders. They were not human and they were…something. Words failed them, as did their memories. The shape and substance of the aliens seemed to dissipate as soon as their minds tried to focus on them. It was as though they were figments of dreams, and yet there could be no doubt they were there. Their presence was palpable everywhere one went. It left them with nothing to fight, nothing to even focus their anxiety on.
Strangest of all was how little things changed. The invaders were among them, shadowing their thoughts, filling their every step with doubt, and yet they did little concrete. Businesses still opened and closed, people went to work and ran their errands, and returned home to their families. But all the while the aliens were there, not observing, not disrupting, simply there, as if they had always been and always would be.
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