Twenty-three days after the strain as first unleashed, New York City is a war zone. On Mott Street in Chinatown, Navy SEALs burst into a building and find strigoi feeding on a woman. They gun the creatures down and then kill the woman before she can turn. Once they're done, they report that the first floor is clear. More soldiers move through the basement, taking out strigoi, and find a tunnel leading into the sewers. They call in Vasiliy, who is waiting outside, and is checking the tunnels throughout Chinatown. Several people ask Vasiliy if they're taking the fight to the strigoi, and shut "New York Strong!"
The soldiers enter the tunnels and see the strigoi ahead. When the creatures charge, the soldiers open fire and take them down and then advance, making sure their protective suits are sealed. They continue the search for Bolivar but find nothing.
On Kelton Street, Eph sits in the darkness and hears dogs barking outside. He picks up his gun and goes to investigate, and turns to see Zack standing in the shadows. His son--now a strigoi--steps forward and Eph says that he's sorry and shoots. The gun is empty, and Zack comes in and advances on his father. He extends his stinger and Eph fires, blowing off Zack's head…
And Eph wakes up from his nightmare when someone bangs on the door. Several locals charge in, guns drawn, and confirm that he's human. They say that there's been a mandatory evacuation and demand to see his ID, and Eph shows it to them. They wonder why he's there when his CDC badge could get him hotel privileges, and Eph says that he's waiting for his son.
Once the men leave, Eph waits in the darkness and drinks. He finally gets up and goes out to where his stolen taxi is parked. As Eph gets in, he sees a dog down the street rummaging through garbage, ignores it, and drives off. Eph drives through the mostly abandoned streets to Red Hook and goes into Abraham's building. As he makes the bioweapon, Justine arrives with men carrying more material for the bioweapon. She knows that Eph was in Woodside and asks what is going on, and Eph says that he's keeping an eye on his property. The councilwoman points out that Eph is still a fugitive if she didn't have him under her protection, and says that she needs him on her staff trying to figure things out. Eph isn't interested, and Justine says that they're pushing the strigoi out, but they don't have the manpower. They can't push any further, and Justine warns that the bioweapon isn't as fatal as it was a week ago. She says that they need a plan, tells Eph to take a shower, and leaves.
Later, Eph drives to a CDC lab in Queens and breaks in through the roof. He goes to the lab and wonders if the strigoi are adapting to the bioweapon.
On West 5th, people are distributing food and medicine. Eph arrives and tells one of the people Raul, that he found asthma medicine and trades it for food, alcohol, and a taser.
At Quinlan's apartment, Bradley and Quinlan go over the Luman and try to work out what it says about the strigoi. Quinlan warns that the answer isn't there, and insists that they have to take action. Abraham refuses to take action until they possess all of the knowledge in the text.
Vasiliy goes to the NYC command center where Justine is on the phone to the government. He listens as she insists that they're not giving up the territory that they've taken from the strigoi. Justine then meets with Vasiliy and gets his report on the SEALs. He warns that the strigoi are getting faster, and Justine asks if there is any way to convince the SEALs to help her secure Manhattan and call in reinforcements. Vasiliy warns that they do their own thing, and Justine tells him to help them however he can.
Eph drives through a blockade on Bleeker Street and notices that he's low on gas. He pulls into a parking garage and finds an abandoned car, and starts siphoning gas from it. A strigoi charges him from the shadows and Eph wounds it, and it retreats back. Eph goes after it and it charges forward. After he shoots it dead, Eph goes back to his car and reloads just in time to shoot one more strigoi. Another one charges and Eph realizes that his gun is empty. He pins his attacker down and stabs it in the stinger with a silver knife when it tries to bite him. Once it's down, Eph tosses the worm-covered knife in the back and tries to start the taxi. Another strigoi tries to get in but Eph drives off, running over another strigoi. He drives out into the sunlight and the strigoi bursts into flame, falling off the hood.
In his apartment in Harlem, Gus extracts some blood from himself and drains it into a bowl. He then feeds it to his strigoi mother, Guadalupe, She tries to sting him despite her restraints, and then dips her stinger into the blood and drinks it. Gus says that it's all that he's got, and tells her that he'll get them back for what they did to them.
Quinlan meets with the three Ancients and their sunhunter speaker, Lar, greets him. They are surprised to see him after he's allied with the humans, and Quinlan says that he has no allegiances: only the enemy. He's taking action against the Master, who has broken their truce. Quinlan figures that the Master destroyed the other three Ancients and has come to the New World to finish the job. Lar demands to know what Quinlan has learned from the Luman, and Quinlan says that the book is not ye deciphered. When the sunhunter speaks for the Ancients and demands what Quinlan has found, Quinlan warns them not to threaten him and says that they have a mutual enemy.
Vasiliy walks down the street and tries to help a woman with her luggage. She draws a gun on him and a bemused Vasiliy backs off. He then goes up to Quinlan's apartment and asks how his research is going. Abraham warns that even though he's had the book for a week, it's not enough time. Vasiliy explains how he's working with the SEALs, and realizes that Quinlan has arrived. Quinlan says that he can finish Bolivar and the SEALs can't, and that technology offers no advantage against the Master. Vasiliy isn't impressed and says that he doesn't like Quinlan because he's a half-strigoi.
Abraham tells Vasiliy that's enough, and Vasiliy asks for a moment alone. Once Quinlan leaves, Abraham says that Quinlan has been instrumental in translating the Luman. Vasiliy warns that Quinlan may turn against him, but Abraham is unimpressed. The exterminator says that he's going to hunt for the Master while Abraham does his thing. As Vasiliy goes, Abraham wishes him good luck.
That night on Murray Street, Vasiliy provides information on the subway system to the Navy SEALs. He wonders if they can get more troops, and the head SEAL Kroft warns that if they don't find the head strigoi in two days, they've gone. As far as the government is concerned, NYC has been written off. They spot the strigoi on IR, all heading underground before sunrise. Vasiliy suggests that he go down with them since he's been down there, but Kroft says that there's no civilian ridealongs allowed
The SEALs head down and find a group of watchers. The SEALs get as close as they can and then take them out, and see a man in a suit. Strigoi realizes that it's Eichhorst and tells Kroft not to lose him. Eichhorst crawls up a ladder and Vasiliy warns them that Eichhorst is faster.
Eichhorst walks down Mott Street and the SEALs pursue him. He heads for a church and Vasiliy drives there. He tells the SEALs to wait for him, but they follow Eichhorst into the church sand search the place. Vasiliy pulls up out front and tries to reach the SEALs, but they're not responding.
The SEALs spot something moving in the shadows and one squad led by Ford tries to contact Kroft, but discover that he's out of contact. Their equipment gives out and they prepare to retreat, but a high-pitched ringing sound echoes out and they collapse. Vasily, monitoring the feed, sees it cut out and reaches Kroft. He warns that Eichhorst is hunting them now, grabs a rifle, and runs inside.
Kroft and his men see something moving in the shadow sand fire, but hit nothing. More SEALs go down and their screams echo over the radio.
Inside the church, Vasiliy fires a flare and yells at Kroft not to shoot. A strigoi emerges and Vasiliy guns it down, and hears screaming up ahead.
Kroft and his two remaining soldiers move on, and the Master takes one of them out. They hear Vasiliy and Kroft yells at him to get out. The ringing noise rings out again, but only Kroft's man Coley can hear it. Kroft moves on and when he turns back, Coley is dead, ripped in half. The leader's light goes out and the ringing noise rips through his head. Kroft yells a warning to Vasiliy and tells him to find his other team and get them out.
Vasiliy finds Ford's squad, dead. Strigoi move forward and Vasiliy guns them down, and then grabs two surviving soldiers and helps them out.
Kroft moves forward but the Master grabs him and stings him. Meanwhile, Vasiliy gets the two soldiers out and looks around. Eichhorst is waiting and bids him a good evening. He easily dodges Vasiliy's gunfire and runs off.
Zach is in his apartment reading when Kelly comes in. She starts to remove her human disguise and asks Zach to help her. He takes her hand and steadies it, and he combs her wig. Kelly says that the Master is going to let them be together because she is going to do something for him.
Eph returns to his house and discovers that the power is out. He pours himself a drink and makes some soup, and eats in the darkness. Eph then takes out a silver sword and waits. Someone opens the front door, and Eph goes to investigate. Three of Kelly's strigoi "eyes" move in on him. Kelly comes in, still wearing her human disguise, and says that Zach is alive and Eph can get him back. Eph demands to know where his son is, and wonders how much of Kelly is still alive. Kelly says that she still feels sadness like a void, but then the thirst drives those emotions away. She walks forward and says that they want the Luman, and Eph has a choice to make: the book or Zach.
Written by Gadfly on Aug 29, 2016