Fright and shame struggled inside Giles. Why did he fear Underby so much? Why did he love Phaedra so dearly? What should a man do in this situation?
He sat in his smoking lounge, toying with his custom revolver, unloading and reloading each chamber. Each click brought him closer to the unavoidable truth – it didn’t matter why he loved Phaedra, only that he did. It didn’t matter that he was afraid of Underby – he would honor his offer if the ghoul accepted it.
Flicking the chamber closed, Berithos extinguished his cigar and sat up in the armchair. Yes, he would die if need be, but he wanted to take Underby with him… or at least hurt him. He thought of the Clockwinder’s warning against open murder. Hmm… did Babbage even have capital punishment? If so, Giles would bet that it wouldn’t be a simple hanging. These mad engineers would probably stretch the condemned to death between two steam engines, or maybe even break him on a giant cog.
Dismissing such thoughts, Giles stood and felt resoluteness pour into him. Time to strike a decisive blow. Fear be damned.
He holstered his revolver and walked straight over to the Bucket. No one appeared to be there, but he knew that Maggie may very well be skulking in the back. Silently, he crept to the bar. He found what he was looking for. He gently picked up the skull, turned it upside down, unbuttoned his trousers and relieved himself straight into the foramen magnum.
Setting the skull back on the bar, Giles quickly left. He nearly skipped back to his surgery, murmuring the lyrics to a little song of his own devising, “La – la – la… I can say no more than this. Underby’s mother is full of piss.”