Yesterday it was revealed that Gary Barlow had gone behind boss Simon Cowell's back and secretly enlisted the help of former X Factor Judge Cheryl Cole for the judge's houses stage of the competition.
And now the first pictures of Cheryl's shock return to the show have been unveiled.
Looking sophisticated and demure in a black and white fitted dress, Cheryl seemed excited about returning to the show, which she left two years ago.
The contestants who were in Gary's category- rumoured to be the Over 28's- were left in the dark about the identity of his aide, even putting a table cloth over Cheryl's head so that they wouldn't recognise her.
They may have missed out on a trip abroad but we're sure that Cheryl's surprise return more than made up for the contestant's loss of air miles.
Talking to the contestants, Cheryl said: "I've been in both positions- I've been here and I've been on your side so I know how you are feeling."
"I'm just so excited to be here."
[Related Story: Cheryl Cole is returning to the X Factor]
[Related article: Cheryl Cole admits she doesn't watch The X Factor]
Gary backed Cheryl's appointment, telling the contestants: "It's safe to say that this person knows a thing or two about the competition."
Yesterday, Gary tweeted Cheryl in a bid to make sure the two didn't turn up wearing matching outfits.
He tweeted the singer: "@CherylCole just so we don't clash, I'm wearing the pink suit with the red shoes ;)"
Cheryl was quick to reply to the Take That singer saying: "@Gbarlowofficial Got you !! ;) see you soon !!!"
Simon Cowell, who had no idea about Cheryl's return, also took to Twitter with a seal his approval posting: "Welcome back Cheryl. X"