"When I had regained my former size, which needed two successive doses of the drug, I found myself surrounded by a crowd of the Oroids, pushing and shoving each other in an effort to get closer to me. The news of my success over their enemy have been divined by them, evidently.
"I cannot account for the first cause of this trouble. Perhaps the Malite war, with its disillusionment to our people I do not know. Faith in human kindness was broken: the Oroids could no longer trust implicitly in each other. A gradual distrust arose a growing unrest a dissatisfaction, which made no demands at first, nor seemed indeed to have any definite grievances of any sort.
"Of course," the Big Business Man interjected under his breath. "If the drugs should ever get out of our possession down here, immeasurable harm would result to this world, as well as causing our own deaths. If we leave now, we save ourselves; although we leave the Oroids ruled by Targo. But without the power of the drugs, he can do only temporary harm. Eventually he will be overthrown.
Orlog withdrew from the Oroid government and is now handling its affairs as a separate nation." "I wonder " began the Big Business Man thoughtfully. "Well, why not let them run it that way, if they want to?" "No reason, if they were sincere. But they are not sincere nor honest fundamentally. Their leaders are for the most part Malites, or Oroids with Malite blood. And they are fooling the people.
A crowd of Oroids watched them leave, and many others were to be seen ahead; but these scattered as the giants approached. Occasionally a few stood their ground, and these the Big Business Man mercilessly trampled under foot. "It's the only way; I'm sorry," he said, half apologetically. "We cannot take any chances now; we must get out."
You must understand, though, that these other worlds are infinitely tiny compared to the Oroids, and, if inhabited, support beings nearly as much smaller than the Oroids, as they are smaller than you." "Great Caesar!" ejaculated the Banker. "Don't let's go into that any deeper!" "Tell us more about Lylda," prompted the Very Young Man. "You are insatiable on that point," laughed the Chemist.
"You said you had calculated the best way," suggested the Doctor to the Chemist. "First of all," interrupted the Big Business Man. "Are we sure none of these Oroids is going to follow us? For Heaven's sake let's have done with these terrible struggles." The Very Young Man remembered. "He stole one of the vials," he said, pointing to Targo's body. "He was probably alone," the Chemist reasoned.
Then I ran two or three miles directly toward the country of the Malites, and returning I stamped along the course of the river for a mile or so in both directions. Then I walked back to Arite, again picking my way carefully among crowds of Oroids, who now feared me so little that I had difficulty in moving without stepping upon them.
The Chemist's voice floated in through the doorway. "To the Oroids happiness to them." Then for an instant there was silence as they drank the toast. Aura met the Very Young Man's eyes and smiled a little wanly. "Happiness to them! I wonder. We who are so happy to-night I wonder, are they?" The Very Young Man leaned towards her. "You are happy, Aura?"
They stood around the house, while the Very Young Man, in the garden, took the drug and dwindled in stature to Oroid size. There were none of the Oroids in sight, except some on the beach and others up the street silently watching. As he grew smaller the Very Young Man sat down wearily in the wreck of what once had been Lylda's beautiful garden.