Grant Walker, a good cop who knows a bit about New Jerusalem’s occult underground, tells Gwen and Arthur that he’s been looking into the same missing child cases that Gwen’s been investigating.
Since Gwen rescued the Hampton children a month ago, five more children have gone missing – all from poor families in the city’s slums, with Major Crimes writing them off as unconnected custody/runaway cases. Over the weekend, videos have been uploaded to YouTube and social media sites, to-camera rants from a man dressed in robes, talking about the power of Satan and his plans to take what he desires. The last one, uploaded this morning, showed a glimpse of what looked like children in cages – and the ranting Satanist proclaiming that he’ll make a grand sacrifice to the Devil at midnight, claiming supernatural power and proving that goodness and morality are meaningless.
Walker is convinced that these are the missing children, but the police aren’t taking the videos seriously; desperate for help and backup (because the Satanists in the videos look like they may have guns), he’s come to Gwen as the only person who might know more about this case. Gwen does know more, more than Walker expected; when he shows her the videos, she realises that they were shot in the abandoned New Jerusalem Children’s Hospital – abandoned because she set fire to it 15+ years ago in an attempt to stop a monster, an attempt that left children dead and her life in tatters. She confers with Arthur, and though Charlotte is in trouble, they agree that they have to prioritise helping Walker rescue the children and stop the Satanists. As night falls, they head out to the abandoned hospital, on the very edge of the city’s slum district, and Arthur learns more about Walker – a cop and self-taught ‘gutter mage’ using the tools of supernatural evil to fight supernatural evil.
The hospital is an old brick building, burned-out and ruined, but they see lights shining within and cars parked nearby. Sneaking in through the sewers, they discover a booby trap monitored by a digital video camera – the same kind stolen by ram-raiders from a local camera shop just days ago. Passing the trap, they make their way into the burned-out basement of the hospital, where Gwen encountered something horrific years ago – and where they now encounter a couple of armed guards. In a frenzied rush, Gwen, Arthur and Walker rush the cultists, grab weapons and fight their way up and through the abandoned hospital, kicking the butts of all their opponents, narrowly avoiding serious injury and finding more DV cameras and Go-Pros recording events.
At the top of the building, they discover the children locked in cages, and the cult leader – armed with an assault rifle – guarding them. Arthur and Walker distract him as Gwen gets into position, and she takes him down (lethally) before he can hurt any of his captives – but not before he calls forth his trump card, a vicious hound-demon called Erubaz that Walker has encountered before. As Arthur tries to free the children, Gwen fights the demon hand-to-hand (her second demon fight just this week), and Walker calls on his gutter magic tricks to bind the creature and send it back to hell. With the police approaching, the children are freed, and Walker realises that the binding circle used to contain Erubaz shouldn’t have actually worked – and that the cameras in the hospital have been broadcasting live to the internet throughout this terrifying raid.
And in the black iron cathedral of the Church Infernal, in the depths of Hell, the Butcher Bishop learns that Walker and the Shadows have foiled the Satanic cult – and he laughs, and laughs, and laughs…