JOURNALIST: There were a dozen dead bodies in the Euston Road,
their outlines softened by the black dust.
All was still, houses locked and empty,
shops closed - but looters had helped themselves to wine
and food, and outside a jewellers some gold chains
and a watch were scattered on the pavement.
JOURNALIST: I stopped, staring towards the sound. It seemed as
if that mighty desert of houses had found a voice for its fear and solitude.
JOURNALIST: The desolating cry worked upon my mind.
The wailing took possession of me. I was intensely weary,
footsore, hungry and thirsty. Why was I wandering alone in
this city of the dead? Why was I alive, when London was lying
in state in its black shroud? I felt intolerably lonely,
drifting from street to empty street, drawn inexorably towards that cry.
JOURNALIST: I saw, over the trees on Primrose Hill,
the Fighting Machine from which the howling came.
I crossed Regents Canal. There stood a second machine,
upright, but as still as the first.
JOURNALIST: Abruptly, the sound ceased. Suddenly, the desolation,
the solitude, became unendurable.
While that voice sounded, London had still seemed alive.
Now suddenly, there was a change, the passing of something
- and all that remained was this gaunt quiet.
I looked up and saw a third machine. It was erect and motionless,
like the others. An insane resolve possessed me.
I would give my life to the Martians, here and now!
I marched recklessly towards the titan and saw that
a multitude of black birds was circling and clustering about the hood.
I began running along the road. I felt no fear,
only a wild, trembling exultation, as I ran up
the hill towards the motionless monster.
Out of the hood hung red shreds,
at which the hungry birds now pecked and tore.
I scrambled up to the crest of Primrose Hill,
and the Martian's camp was below me.
A mighty space it was, and scattered about it,
in their overturned machines, were the Martians - dead.
Slain, after all man's devices had failed,
by the humblest things upon the Earth.
Bacteria. Minute, invisible, bacteria!
Directly the invaders arrived and drank and fed,
our microscopic allies attacked them.
From that moment - they were doomed!