Day 11 – Friday

The Queen, the PM, and the Martian

11-Jun 00:01 – Friday

The Queen arrives at Balmoral, much to the distress of the British Government who had arranged for her to travel to Paris, and the first description of the Martians is obtained when a recovered Martian corpse is rushed to the #RotchWoodEstate in Scotland for autopsy.

 

In London, the scarcity of entries in Toni’s diary today shows how the group has been almost overwhelmed with the situation. However, they continue to organize and today ‘elect’ Elizabeth Cadbury as their commander-in-chief.

 

Morant’s escape route now permits refugees to get as far as Finchley Road Station using the underground. From there a network of safe houses has been set up to take refugees to a staging point 30 miles northeast of London.

11-Jun 04:30 @LtJRDullanty #PersonalDiary

The body of the Martian turned out to be dead but we successfully recovered it and I sent the Sergeant with two men to protect the body to the nearest Great Eastern Railways’ station at Southminster with orders he was to telegraph my father who would arrange its transfer. Meanwhile we spent 15 minutes trying to recover what else we could from the remains of the Martians before a heliograph message forwarded from the town warned us of further tripods approaching. Ceasing our recovery efforts we pulled back to the shelter of the town.

 

We pulled out after dark and caught up with the Sergeant and the two privates at Southminster. They’d been told to await a special that was to convey the body north. Leaving him with 1st platoon I headed back to Tilbury.

11-Jun 05:00 @3rdMarquessOfSalisbury

Later, described by Sir Winston Churchill as surely one of the greatest understatements received by a Prime Minister, the following telegram was received by the 3rd Marquess of Salisbury at a time when he had assumed the Queen was safely on the continent.

 

From: Sir Edmund Monson, 1st Baronet, Ambassador to France.
To: The 3rd Marquess of Salisbury KG GCVO PC FRS DL. Prime Minister

 

SIR JUST BEEN INFORMED BY THE FRENCH GOVERNMENT THAT THE QUEEN HAS REACHED BALMORAL STOP THOUGHT YOU MIGHT NEED TO KNOW ENDS

 

 

11-Jun 05:15 @VictoriaRegina

From: Baron Muir Mackenzie, Balmoral

 

To: Lieutenant Colonel John Hague, Equerry, Prince of Wales, BIRMINGHAM

 

I HAVE BEEN ASKED TO CONVEY THE QUEEN’S BEST WISHES AND TRUST IN HER MOST LOYAL SON ALBERT EDWARD PRINCE OF WALES IN THIS TIME OF EXTREME DANGER TO THE CROWN AND TO THE QUEEN’S SUBJECTS STOP THE QUEEN HAS MADE IT CLEAR THAT SHE WILL NOT DESERT HER PEOPLE IN THIS TIME OF NEED.

11-Jun 05:20 @3rdMarquessOfSalisbury

11-Jun 05:20 @3rdMarquessOfSalisbury

Robert Arthur Talbot Gascoyne-Cecil, 3rd Marquess of Salisbury KG GCVO PC FRS DL (1830 – 1903) was a British statesman and Conservative politician who served as Prime Minister of the United Kingdom 3 times for a total of over 13 years, including during the Martian invasion.

 

Lord Robert Cecil, also known as Lord Salisbury, was first elected to the House of Commons in 1854. Following the death of his father in 1868 he became the 3rd Marquess of Salisbury, moving to the House of Lords. He was the last PM to serve from the House of Lords.

 

After Disraeli’s death in 1881, Salisbury emerged as Conservative leader in the Lords. He was prime minister three times (1885–86, 1886–92, 1895–1900), the most significant period being the last when he faced the Martian invasion.

 

Despite beating the Martians, the 1900 election resulted in Salisbury’s coalition of Unionists and Conservatives being reduced to a mere rump with the Liberals gaining 54% of the vote, and the Labour Representation Committee, later to become the Labour Party. winning 25%.

 

Historians generally agree that Salisbury’s loss was due to the anger those south of the Gascoyne-Cecil Line felt against the government who’d ‘left them behind’ to fend for themselves.

 

The organisation and grass roots support by groups, such as the NUWSS whose organisational ability had been built, and refined during the war, also proved vital to the size of the swing. Their reward, of course was the introduction of ‘The Universal Suffrage Act’ of 1902.

 

The historian, Paul Smith characterises Salisbury’s personality as “deeply neurotic, depressive, agitated, introverted, fearful of change and loss of control, and self-effacing but capable of extraordinary competitiveness.”

 

A representative of the landed aristocracy, Salisbury held the reactionary credo, “Whatever happens will be for the worse, and therefore it is in our interest that as little should happen as possible”

 

Dame Antoinette Louise Clark, GCVO (aka @toniwantsthevote), and Britain’s first female health minister was once heard to remark of Salisbury: ‘Only a neurotic control freak would think that drawing a line on a map would stop a Martian in a tripod. Fortunately, our earthly bacteria have more fortitude than that man. And so did the voting public.’

11-Jun 06:00 @BreakerMorant #TheUnderOverGroundSecretRailway

Brown sent us a pigeon from Chesham. He has set up a network of safe houses for refugees to a staging point 30 miles northeast of London.

11-Jun 09:00 @BreakerMorant #AnotherBreakfastHandover

At breakfast handover, we announce that refugees can get as far as Finchley Road Station using the underground. Using the semaphore flag “R” marking the escape route Brown has made. The way is marked to at least Chesham.

 

Setting up safehouses where refugees can rest and be fed before their group takes its turn in the tunnels is working well. Guides report that it has helped that the refugees now know people in the group they are in.

 

Most Martian activity seems to be focused on Didcot and further west. Our own food supplies are getting low, and refugees are still streaming in.

11-Jun 10:00 @BreakerMorant #DoMartiansOnlyEatHumans

Without my permission, the Curries obtained a horse from the stables and left it tied up on Tower Bridge. The Martians ignored it, and the Curies are now convinced that they only want humans for food.

I explained to both Currie’s that the horse was our food and not for pointless experiments on the Martians. I tell them they need to work out how to make a heat ray weapon. Marie suddenly seemed to forgot how to speak English.

11-Jun 10:34 @LtCarver

From the personal log of Lt Roger Carver, Royal Marines, HMS Thunder Child, 11 June 1897, 10:34 GMT:

We spent the better part of yesterday and today on the shore waiting. To our dismay, the battleships of the Channel Squadron remained on the horizon, their distant shimmering forms in my binoculars. They sent us no relief, despite our repeated signals.

 

“Commander,” asked Sergeant Howard, not unkindly. “Orders? Poor old Thunder Child’s gone; there’s no help coming from those blighters.” He nodded out to sea.

 

I nodded. I had hoped to find survivors from Thunder Child, but it was evident that she was lost with all hands.

 

Meanwhile my little group of Marines and Horse Guards had grown, picking up stragglers from other regiments. The story these new arrivals told was the same: the wholesale slaughter of humanity.  Between myself, Howard, and Lieutenant Mann, we struggled with discipline, but then – “Woking, Sergeant,” I heard myself say.

 

“Beg pardon, sir?”

 

“Woking.” The Admiralty had a theory that the enemy has established a wireless beacon there. I intend for us to destroy it.”

 

Howard raised an eyebrow but nodded. Any order would help. “Right you are, sir.”

11-Jun 10:40 @AdmiralKerr

From the personal log of Admiral Sir Walter Kerr, C in C, Channel Squadron, aboard HMS Majestic, 11 June 1897, 10:40 GMT:

Lookout reports partial heliograph message obscured by heavy fog received from shore. Message reads: …INTEND TO ATTACK MARTIANS AT WOKING. (signed) CARVER, THUNDER CHILD.

 

11-Jun 10:54 @ToniWantsToVote

Held formal planning meeting this morning. We are all #afraid. BUT we need to #help somehow. Elected @lizcadbury as commander in chief. We will go apartment to apartment today to see who is in the building and go on from there. #whydidwenotdothisbefore

11-Jun 11:03 @ToniWantsToVote

#whereisouractualgovernment?

#howdoweorganisecommunications?

#toomanythoughts

11-Jun 12:47 @ToniWantsToVote

Went out with @graceharwoodstewart and @lizcadbury to scout area. #Martians on the horizon #aloo #calling

11-Jun 15:14 @ToniWantsToVote

Have been through #QueenAnnesMansions looking for #survivors. Most have fled. Found #bodies in two lower floor flats. Building is mostly empty. Nearly all remaining residents are #toooldtoflee #leftbehind #chosetostay #sadness

11-Jun 17:09 @ToniWantsToVote

Returned from second scout trip. Found collection of black dust in dried puddle. Could it be #blacksmoke residue? #Pocket supplies contained sample jars, so I carefully #fear scraped residue up and sealed it in a jar.

11-Jun 17:12 @ToniWantsToVote

@sirjohntheengineer has some supplies, that combined with ours, might help to the #analyse #blackdustresidue #fear #apprehension

11-Jun 18:00 #MartianAutopsy

11-Jun 18:00 #MartianAutopsy

To: Sec of State for War, Henry Petty-Fitzmaurice, 5th Marquess Lansdowne, cc Colonel Coldstream Guards, Gen Sir Stephenson. Sirs, I have the honour to present the results of the autopsy on the Martian captured by No 4 Company Coldstream Guards.

Respectfully Dr John H Watson.

 

“The Martian has a huge round body—or, rather, a head—about 4 feet in diameter. In the front of this body, or head, is a face. This face has no nostrils but rather a pair of very large, dark-colored eyes, with just beneath the eyes a kind of fleshy beak…

 

“At the back of this head/body—I scarcely know how to speak of it—is a single tight tympanic surface, an ear, though it must be almost useless in our denser air. Grouped round the mouth were sixteen slender, almost whip-like tentacles, arranged in two bunches of eight each…

 

“These bunches have were named, by the distinguished anatomist, Professor Howes, who assisted me – the hands. Those brave men of the Cold Stream Guards,or recovered the body, have told me that they saw the Martians endeavoring to raise themselves on these hands…

 

“Of course, Earth’s increased gravity made it impossible for the Martians to raise themselves in this fashion. But there is reason to suppose that on Mars they may have progressed upon these “hands” with some facility…

 

“Internally, dissection revealed that the greater part of the structure was the brain, linked to the eyes, ear, and tactile tentacles by enormous nerves. Besides this were the complex lungs, into which the mouth opened, and the heart and its vessels…

 

“Strange as it may seem, the Martian fail to possess any apparatus of digestion. They were heads—merely heads, without entrails. They did not eat, much less digest. Instead, it appears they take the fresh, living blood of other creatures, and inject it into their own veins…

 

“The physiological advantages of the practice of injection are undeniable, if one thinks of the tremendous waste of time and energy occasioned by eating and the digestive process…

 

“Their undeniable preference for men as their source of nourishment is partly explained by the nature of the remains of the victims they had brought with them as provisions from Mars. And which had been recovered from Woking on a previous occassion…

 

“These ‘supplies” or creatures, to judge from the shrivelled remains, were bipeds, with flimsy, silicious skeletons (almost like those of the silicious sponges) and feeble musculature…

 

“They stood about six feet high, with round, erect heads, and large eyes in flinty sockets. Two or three of these seem to have been brought in each cylinder, and all were killed and drained before Earth was reached…

 

“In 3 other points their physiology differs strangely from ours. They did not sleep, any more than the heart of man sleeps. Secondly Martians were absolutely without sex, and therefore without any of the tumultuous emotions that arise from that difference among men…

 

“Despite the lack of sex, they do reproduce-in a manner similar to how young lily-bulbs bud off, or the young of fresh-water polyps. The recovered body included the bud of a young Martian, probably born upon earth during the war, still attached to its parent…

 

“The last salient point was the appearance of gangrene on the creature’s skin, and internal organs. From the pattern of the gangrene’s spread it appears that a minor cut may have become infected, with the infection then spreading throughout the body…

 

“However, no sign of the original entry point could be found, and the young “bud” was also severely compromised. It has been suggested that the systems of these creatures differ significantly from ours by the apparent ease and speed with which it had succumbed to the bacteria…

 

“Professor Howes has posseted that this may be because Micro-organisms, which cause so much disease and pain on earth, have either never appeared upon Mars, or Martian sanitary science eliminated them ages ago…

 

“How significant this difference is remains to be determined, however, there was clear signs of putrification in several of its “hands” which had thereby been rendered useless.

I remain your faithful Servant, John H. Watson M.D.

11-Jun 21:47 @ToniWantsToVote

All residents now relocated to upper floors of #QueenAnnesMansions Nine of them, three of us, and @sirjohntheengineer

11-Jun 21:59 @ToniWantsToVote

#exhausted #achinglegs #toomanystairs

11-Jun 22:09 @ToniWantsToVote

Executive committee determined not to move #bodies outside #QueenAnnesMansions. Retired Major (@servedinAfricawhat) said will tell #Martians we are here. #stink #justaswellIamnotsqueamish