Cut to the Cutting

The acolytes have suspicions about the Alms House in connection with the disappearance of citizens, and mutilation of one in particular. A stake-out sees a roaming gang leave the House and a plan is concocted to intercept their return.

As with most plans having an improvised portion, the situation goes awry when Elza tries to distract the gang. She ends up caught and bound, although not before raising enough commotion to draw the rest of the acolytes to her position. The gang is not about to be negotiated with and a fight breaks out, shots ringing in both directions as each side tries to wound or otherwise immobilise the other.

Some good shooting knocks down a couple of the gang members, who the acolytes find to be biologically mutated themselves, which opens up an opportunity to assist Elza. Left gagged and tied up on the ground as the bodysnatchers engage the other acolytes, she has been trying with no success to escape her bonds.

Lionus is first to reach Elza and removes the gag as he starts to untie her. The knots are pretty secure, though, and he's struggling. 'Lionus', Elza says, 'you know those five knives you've been flashing around since we got here, the ones you're aching to use in a fight?'

'Yep', he replies, 'and I'm still hoping to get a chance now, but your safety is more of a priority.'

'Actually, I was thinking you could use one of them to cut the rope.'

'Oh, right.' The bonds are easily sliced, freeing Elza and letting Lionus finally make use of his knives.

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