It was a one in a million chance that everything worked out in the end.
Once Dodgy had settled down, he needed light. And what did he use for light? Candles. I would almost definitely not have been able to find him otherwise; I'm not a hacker like some of the Boss's other guys, though I can do okay in a pinch. But as soon as he - she - whatever. Soon as he looked into that flame I knew where he was, so I gave Kobold instructions on when to feed the kid, and when to slap him, and left. I can't really describe how the travel was - I don't use fancy methods like the Path or supersonic jets or whatever. I have my own way of getting around.
Of course the candle's light went out when I got in the room - that's how I move from place to place, after all. Dodgy was sitting at his computer, typing furiously, and pausing now and again to look around; when the candle went out, he finished up his post and turned to stare almost directly at my place in the shadows. I could have gotten him before he clicked 'Publish', but there was no reason to, really. A cat likes to play with its food before it eats it.
A cat can also see in the dark. My night-vision hasn't improved over the years, but I'm still comfortable in near-total darkness. I wobbled over behind Dodgy and got a good look at his new body before I tied it up.
She was really thin, which probably came from her imprisonment. In the faint light from the computer screen her eyes looked a sort of pale blue, and her shoulder-length hair was strawberry blond, which looked lovely in the half-light when I grabbed it and pulled backwards, hard.
Dodgy started to fight back, his psycho instinct kicking in, and the first thing he did was flail. The girl's body wasn't exactly in the best shape for a fight against a ready, willing, and able captor - you know, me - but Dodgy's mind was, and as soon as he was upright he jabbed me in the stomach with his elbow and stumbled towards the other side of the small room, stepping on my foot in the process. When I had gotten my breath back I lifted the rope and walked towards him, but he slapped me across the jaw and punched me straight in the nose. I think he might have broken it, and I feel absolutely no remorse for what happened next.
I whacked him around the side of his head, just below the temple, and clapped his ears. While he was shaking his head, I threw the rope around his arms and torso and pulled it tight, tying it up with a Devil's Tongue, one of my favorite knots. When all that was finished I lifted the very bottom of my hood and blew on the candle's still-hot wick, relighting it. Using that energy I, grabbing Dodgy's shoulder, took us both out of the room - good timing, because I think there were shouts coming from upstairs.
The next part of the story happened fairly quickly. Tigercub and Mercury had lit some candles a little beforehand, so I showed up, dropped off Dodgy, exchanged some pleasantries, and left again - they brought out a few matches, as the wicks had cooled down too much for me to relight them myself. Some big guy came out from the back of the storage cellar where we had met and picked up the still-struggling girl, but I was away before I could do anything about it.
And I arrived on a battlefield. Outside was more shouting and several gunshots, and maybe crying, too. Little girl crying, not Kobold crying, although Kobold was bellowing in that way of his. I picked up the boy, who was still laying around downstairs, gagged and glaring at me angrily, and shuffled up the ladder. "Mmffmff!" Timmy shouted. Probably the girl's name. I wasn't really paying attention. Kobold was crashing into trees and things and the little girl was standing just outside, holding a gun in her hands and waving it around, crying, like she knew she didn't know how to deal with this situation. I set the boy down and waited until she was way too upset to pay attention to me, and pulled out my lighter and a candle. The lighter was apparently out of fluid, though, so I had to drop it and search my jumpsuit's patchwork pockets for a box of matches. It was tough going, but really it only lasted a few seconds. I waited until Kobold ran by, still screaming, grabbed his arm, picked up the boy, and -
we were gone. New safehouse, new directions, new calm state of mind. Kobold got hit in the arm, but we had the bullet out and the wound patched up fairly quickly, and I fed the kid a sleeping pill for good measure.
Woohoo! What an exhilarating day. Can we do it again sometime?