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Eilidh detected the greasy scent of evil moments before she heard the scream below. She perched in St. Paul’s steeple, watching Perth’s late night pub-crawlers through rotting slats. The scurrying footfalls of humans did not hold her interest, nor did the seeping ruby blood that spread quickly over the flat, grey paving stones. Instead, her eyes turned north along Methven Street, seeking the source of that familiar smell.
Evil smelled like nothing else, worse than a rotting corpse, worse than sewage and disease, more vile than the fumes that billowed from modern machinery, more cloying than the shame of drunken whores. This particular evil was fresh, but not quite pure. It mixed with rage but was contained, refined, as though gestated in the belly of ancient hatred. This evil held promise, and for the first time in decades, Eilidh hesitated, slightly afraid.