At first, Daniela Morales thought the spaceship attacking New York City on the television was just part of some science fiction movie. Then the horrible truth became clear: it was happening in real life. Aliens do exist, and they were invading the planet.
Unable to reach her mother, Daniela makes it her mission to get to her mom's job downtown to find her. But with the city under fire, trying to make it from her apartment in Harlem to the Financial District proves nearly impossible—until Daniela makes an incredible discovery. When a squad of Mogs get the jump on her, she is somehow able to throw them across the street, using telekinesis. Daniela doesn't know where this power came from or why she suddenly has it, but she is sure as hell going to use it. Aliens are tearing up her city and she'll destroy every last one of them that gets in her way. But when she comes face-to-face with the Garde, will she be a friend or a foe?
Dani lives in NYC with her mom and stepdad and is almost sixteen. Her mom has a job as a waitress and her stepdad is on paid disability leave for an unknown reason. Daniela doesn't get along with Benny and they frequently fight over money. Benny moved in with them about three years ago. From Daniela's perspective, he is useless and just watches TV and drinks beer. Daniela wants him to leave and would get a job to support herself and her mom. They live in a somewhat unpleasant and cheap apartment in Harlem. Dani had been getting better grades in school than she had been prior to the attack and was thinking about going to a university.
Daniela's noise-canceling headphones are broken. She asks for new ones and Benny argues with her before storming off. Daniela mentions to her mom that they'd be better off without him before her mom leaves for work. Daniela wanders around for a while before her mom calls her, almost screaming, and tells her to go home. Dani returns to her apartment and finds her stepdad watching the TV and realizing that what she mistook for a sci-fi movie was real news.
They watch the spaceship on TV and see a video of John Smith. Benny holds a baseball bat. A reporter mentions that the Mogadorians are taking prisoners and killing a few. A neighbor yells about the aliens being on their block. Benny ignores it, saying that aliens don't care about Harlem. But they hear crashes and screaming. Benny kills one Mog with his baseball bat so Dani can escape but is shot by a laser gun. Daniela escapes through the fire escape and jumps into a dumpster. She wants to find her mom. A Mog tells her to surrender or die. She throws up her ahnds on reflex and somehow flings their guns away from them. One lunges at her and she throws him away. The other Mogs step away from her, calling her a “Garde”. She kills them. She has no idea what is happening, but she just wants to be safe. She sees other humans fighting with whatever weapons they have. She tries to move away to find her mom and meets a small group of people, but a spaceship arrives. They run, and Daniela destroys the Mogs. A boy compares her powers to those of John Smith. Daniela doesn't know what to do, and she just wants to find her mom. She realizes that she won't be able to do so with a group of people following her. She leads them to a cathedral. A few of them still want to follow her, but she demonstrates her telekinetic power and they back off.
She gets to the train station, but the trains aren't running. She flees the subway when Mogs arrive and gets on a bus. The others on the bus are trying to start it without the keys. They get the engine started as a Mog shows up. Daniela kills him. While they drive, Daniela checks her phone for messages and is disappointed. She is also getting a headache. She eventually has to jump off the bus.
She hides in a bank and witnesses a group of men taking money. She tries to tell them that they're idiots, but they try to escape with money. A spaceship shows up and the robbers shoot at it. They are killed by some sort of missile that gives out light. Daniela hides, but is seen. She lifts them to shield herself from the gunfire.
She witnesses an explosion and sees a dude hanging on a spaceship and burning it. She picks up the bag of money, because she might need it and was lucky. She ducks behind a couch and two boys come in. Daniela observes that one of them has lights coming from his palms and asks for Nine and Five. Dani identifies him as John Smith. She sees another teenager and describes him as “a scrawny, indie-band-looking sort of dude”. They ask her about other people and she demonstrates her telekinesis. She asks why they picked her, out of everyone, to have powers. They don't have answers.
They try to get her to follow them, but she says that she just wants to survive and find her mom. Explosions occur outside and she runs from the ship. John and Sam follow her to a subway that's being shaken by explosions. There are rats and a liquid everywhere. She almost gets crushed, but John holds up part of the subway with difficulty. Dani wants to run, but knows that her mom might be dead, so she helps hold the tunnel up along with Sam. They leave the area and are safe, and Dani and Sam carry John. He passes out and Dani thinks he's dead. They drag him for a while, and Dani is somewhat lost. They rest.
Dani questions Sam about how John is a good alien and she and Sam scavenge forgotten items from a train. Dani mentions her mother and asks about Setrakus Ra, whom she calls “Citrus Ramen.” Sam talks about his father had disappeared too. They also discuss how and why they were the humans to get Legacies. Daniela asks if Sam and John are “a thing,” and Sam awkwardly talks about how they both have “girls”.
She finds a child's backpack and decides to look for her mom where residents have evacuated to. John, Sam, and Dani are found by human soldiers with guns who want to take them to Agent Walker. Dani leaves the bag with money and thinks that she'll return to it with her mom.
Dani is amused by how much respect the soldiers show John and how untouched the Brooklyn area is. She waits in the check-in line for missing people and asks the woman to search for “Roxanne Morales”, but the search yields no results. When Dani mentions that her mom works in the Financial District, the woman tells her that the area had been hit hard in the attack, with few survivors. Daniela runs while she's speaking and thinks about how her mom is probably dead. And knows that her mom would want her to fight.