Lily ran, her feet pattering down the stairs as she left the attic, glad that the corridor below had no windows. Down the next set of stairs she went, the banister vibrating, the entire house trembling from the vibrations of the engine, the pictures of probably dead people no longer swinging in their frames but shaking, rattling, shuddering, the chugging gush of engines growing louder as the girl descended into the house. Eventually she reached the hallway, the grandfather clock as still as ever, the front door left swinging open, the cobbled yard where she'd been playing now lying lurid before London, London now so close that it filled the entire sky, and no longer resembled a sphere but an impossibly vast wall made of rooftops and spires pointed straight towards the orphanage, giving Lily the illusion that she was looking down at the city.
She fought back the nausea, and the sensation that at any moment she was likely to go flying from the hallway and plummet towards those streets suspended before her, and slammed the door closed.
"Not that it'll help,"she thought, as the pulled the bolt across. She had little doubt a GoreMan could break through that door, could claw its way through the wood and glass as easily as it could through flesh and bone. She thought of her gun, thought of the things she'd seen guns do in London, the power those things wielded, but it didn't make her feel any better; Lily had never seen one used on a GoreMan, and she was sure the outcome couldn't be good.
She stood there with her back to the door, listening and feeling the engine chugging beneath her feet, but before she could move Zipper came from the drawing room, and stopped when he saw her.
"Glibskin pinched me saucepan!" he said, speaking not only over the noise of the engine but also over the cackling laughter and rowdy voices that were coming from the kitchen.
"Wear bloomers then." said Lily instantly, not knowing where the words came from. She was starting to feel lightheaded.
"Why do you speak funny?"
"Zipper," she said. "Zipper listen. Listen we have to get out of here."
"Wot you about?"
"Listen, there's a GoreMan outside, and I think it's looking for me, and I can't go back, Zipper, I can't…"
"Are you pulling my tit?" he asked, going to open the door.
"No!" she said, grabbing his hand. "No, it's out there, Lady told me to tell you to make a blazing vampire, and to tell the others…"
"What's all this pullava?" said someone else, and Glibskin came out of the kitchen,
cigarette smouldering in his fingers, disgust covering his face when he saw Lily.
"Lily says there's a GoreMan outside." said Zipper, wrenching his hand out of hers, but not quickly enough to escape Glibskin's keen eye.