It wasn't so much the coming-toward-me-with-a-carving-knife I was worried about. I am a demon, after all, and there's little a mortal (or undead killer crazed zombie) can do that would actually affect me, exorcisms and banishment rites notwithstanding. My problem was that Old Man Farrier was, like Sam and Dilbo, still self-aware. I'm not allowed to terminate the existence of the self-aware, even if they are soul-less. Self-aware means you can beg for redemption, you see.
I scrambled backwards, keeping the table between us. It was like a scene from a farce, the two of us going round and round the kitchen table. All it needed to be complete was a slippery floor and both of us in woolly socks.
The back door crashing open distracted us. I had my back to it and only heard the "Mr. Gas man? Duck!" before the noise of a shotgun blast shattered my eardrums (or would have, if I'd been mortal). Thomas Farrier's head exploded but he kept coming, the knife arm going up and down like a cartoon. The shotgun fired again, severing the spinal cord and Farrier dropped to the floor and lay still, the ashes from the shell wadding drifting and settling all over the room.
I turned to thank my saviour, masking my surprise when it turned out to be Mrs. Benton from the bingo club. She was well into her sixties and weighed not much more than the shotgun she was stuffing new shells into.
"Oh," she said, peering over her reading glasses. "It's you. I thought it was someone worth saving."