How does the crowd at the Common react to the heat ray in The War of the Worlds?
After the first Martian exits its cylinder, the crowd pulls back to the hedges and watches from a distance. People who were very curious are now scared, but the Royal Astronomer, Stent, puts together a Deputation of people to try and make contact. They approach the cylinder with a white flag, trying to show their intentions as peaceful:
Forthwith flashes of actual flame, a bright glare...
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