In the early years of the twenty-first century, Earth teetered on the brink of ecological destruction. Then the alien Hefn came, determined to save the dying Earth -- and to the Hefn, the ends always justified the means. Humans were given nine years to correct their mistakes -- alone, with no recourse to the Hefn's advanced technology. If by then the Earth's ecology had not stabilized, the Hefn would solve the problem for good . . . by eliminating humans entirely.|
But slowly, against their will, some of the Hefn became deeply involved with their human counterparts. And to the handful of people who came to know them, the Hefn made a great difference: as mentors, researchers, rulers . . . and saviors. But could those few friendships sway the Hefn to help save a despoiled planet -- and the human race?