Judge Dredd - Bad Moon Rising

Little Red Riding Hoodlum

A wolf has come to town

SPOILER
from ‘Bad moon Rising’ pg. 92
The walls of Mega-City One have many small gaps, caused by any of the catastrophes that have befallen the city, and have never been filled-in. Some of these holes are unknown to the Judges but are very much known to the wily mutants who live outside the city and who are desperate to get in. One such mutant is Jack Kessler; a mutant who appears perfectly normal on the outside and so can pass as a normal human with no effort required. His mutation, however, becomes apparent when certain hormones in his body drop below a required level. When this happens, Kessler’s mutated DNA reconfigures and the poor creature transmutes into a wolf-like beast.

The trigger for the fluctuations in Kessler’s internal chemistry is the phase of the moon. When the moon is closest to the Earth, the hormone production is raised and Kessler is fine; so, during full moon periods, the werewolf remains dormant. When the moon sinks from view, the werewolf is unleashed – and, in the classic werewolf style, it needs to hunt. Kessler has found his way into the city through one of the holes in the wall and has somehow made his way into Sector 13. As the moon’s phases change, Kessler undergoes his transformation.

Sector 13 becomes a werewolf’s playground.
SPOILER END

Judge’s Thane and Striker began their day normally with a 6:00am briefing. Watch Commander Grice gave out the day’s assignments as usual, assigning Thane and Striker to check out a corpse found in an alleyway off of the corner of Abott and Costello. They drove out there and found the entrance to the alleyway had already been sealed off by the Tek squad, who had already began sweeping the crime scene for evidence. They made their way past the security droids guarding the entrance and immediately saw the corpse of a young man, laid out on the ground in a pool of blood, his chest torn open and his innards missing.

They approached the Tek Judge in charge and got the report. A young man, killed late last night, possibly between 2:00am and 2:30am. The victim was found by the morning shift. The only evidence they were able to ascertain so far from the scene is the following:

• Massive paw-like prints left in the blood-spill from the victim.
• Some shreds of fur, possibly pulled out of the creature’s hide by the victim during the struggle.
• Some clothing fibres which, when analysed, prove to be of a type of coarse cotton usually found in the Cursed Earth.
• A strand of scarlet silk – high quality fabric – that does not belong to the deceased.

Body found Striker examined the crime scene, confirming all the evidence while Thane did a sweep of the rest of the alleyway, no evidence of forced entry and no escape route could be readily found. On a hunch Striker flipped his helmet over to infra-red and checked the blood, too cold to give off a heat signature but it still showed up black against the blue background of the alleyways. Following it, he could see drops, almost invisible, going up along the cargo crates and then up the the side of the wall, disappearing a hundred feet up. Turning to Thane he told him to switch over and take a look.

On a hunch Thane asked Control to check on any incidents involving werewolves and werewolf attacks. Control came back with only one major incident, back in 2099 where the legendary lawman Judge Dredd himself fought and defeated a werewolf pack that was infecting other citizens (including Dredd himself! see progs 322-328)Following this hunch Thane decided to check on the moon phase of the previous night, discovering it had only been a quarter moon he dismissed it.

Striker ordered a sweep of the surrounding PSU cameras but the Tek Judges informed him that this is a privately owned depot and that cameras don’t track in here. Sighing and mumbling about the need to pass a resolution to increase PSU coverage he tells them to check any coverage of the street and to also pull any drone coverage from around the time of the murder.

Thane checked in with MAC to see if there are any other murders matching this MO and surprisingly six more turn up, originating a few weeks back in sector 166, along the outer wall. Confused, but deciding that it all bared further investigating they head back to the sector house to do a little research.

Upon arrival they check in with control on the tap they left on Benetti but nothing has happened since yesterday. They proceeded to their desks and began pulling research on their findings.

They discovered that all the murders that fell under this MO started taking place in sector 166, adjacent to the outer wall, this made sense considering the Cursed Earth fibres they found. All similar killings were in sectors that, when joined, formed a line to sector 13, as if whatever it was had been making it’s way made its way through each sector. Each victim was a low level citizen, no one of repute or importance. Each victim was found in dark, isolated places, alleyways, warehouses, and depots. The last four murders though all possessed one odd variation, the victims had been reported missing for a day before they had been found.

Thane and Striker decided that they should divide their efforts, Striker concentrated on the video surveillance while Thane checked on the piece of fabric which had been identified (by the Tek squad) as a silken fabric sold only by Varsecci, a designer known high end silk apparel.

Drone The footage was inconclusive, no weird creature had been sighted by the drones or on street level. Thane had better luck though, searching through the designers records using the murder’s time frame as a reference point. During that time he found that a petite cloak had been sold to Max Contralto, a cloak matching the colour of the fibre found exactly. This bit of luck struck something in Striker and he reviewed the footage again and found a small, hooded girl of approximately 14 across the street just before the time of the murder. Facial recognition scans came up with nothing.

They began checking on the Contralto connection, three of Max Contralto’s men had been murdered the day before and now a murder that contained evidence that linked Max Contralto to it. They ran a check on his family, discovering that he had two boys, big ones, and his wife, although small was still too large to wear the purchased cloak. The only connection they could come up with was a name, Morrigan Malone, a rumoured hitman for the Contralto’s. No picture or ID could be found though.

Coming up against a wall after hours or research, they decided to call it an evening, they instructed the computer to alert them if anything came in matching the current MO and decided to reconvene at the the Watering Hole, a local bar that specialized in synth ale. They went over theories and evidence until late, eventually growing weary and deciding to get some rest.

Thane retired to his quarters, going over his equipment and cleaning his gun before laying down to sleep. Striker picked up a girl and brought her back to his place, kicking her out a few hours later.

A few hours later a call came into both of them, alerting them that a missing person call had been reported. Normally this wouldn’t raise alarms, as there are hundreds of missing persons each day but these were the grandsons of Grandma Parker, a known enemy and pain in the butt to Max Contralto. Thane told control to log it and keep them up to date if anything changed.

When the morning came they received an update in the morning briefing, the two men had been found just under an hour ago in the garbage recycling system, torn apart and folded in half. This was a clear message and Thane and Striker decided it would be best to pay Grandma Parker a visit.

Driving up to Griffin Dunne, they bipassed the standard security and headed up to the top level of the ConApt, Grandma Parker occupied the top level. Thane knocked on the door but there was no answer. They knocked again, identifying themselves as Judges but still no answer. They drew their lawgivers and entered the premises, using their override cards to gain entry.

Immediately they saw why no one had answered, in the apartment they saw a large, hulking bestial form stooped over they very dead looking form of an older women. In a rocking chair behind it was a girl, wearing a red cloak who was sobbing uncontrollably, a closed wicker basket next to her.

WerewolfThe beast looked over at them and snarled, it’s fangs dripping with blood. Thane ordered it to surrender but it began to charge. Thane ordered his lawgiver to change to rapid fire and then pumped 4 rounds into it’s chest, this slowed the beast noticeably, as it’s fur began exploding with blood, but it did not stop. Striker took careful aim and just as the beast reached Thane he shot, the bullet hitting the beast square in the temple, knocking it sideways over a counter.

The two advanced into the room, Striker covering the wolf man, who appeared to be dead, a low hiss escaping it’s lungs as it twitched once more before finally going still. Thane advanced up towards the girl, asking her what had happened all the while keeping his gun trained on her. The girl continued sobbing, rolled up into a ball saying that it had just burst in and attacked her grandmother but Thane recognized her and her red cloak. Eyeing the basket he moved up to it and took hold of it, as he did though she ceased her bawling and pulled a hand cannon on him, firing at his head. The shot went wide, throwing the chair backwards as it did and Thane (preparred for her to do something) dodged out of the way.

Morrigan rolled the chair backwards and then crawled behind the couch nearby for cover. Thane ordered his lawgiver over to Stumm gas and fired a shot behind her, quickly filling the space with the incapacitating gas. Morrigan began to cough but would not go down, Thane and Striker lowered their respirators and Thane, authoritatively, commanded her to give herself up, as Striker moved into a flanking position to cover her. Morrigan, coughing and realizing she had no where to go dropped her weapon and surrendered. Striker cuffed her and they called in for a meat wagon. They took away the body of the werewolf for study.

Once back at the sector house they interrogated Morrigan but came up empty…until they brought in a Psi-Judge. The Psi-Judge delved deeply into her mind, pulling out secrets and information.
Judge andersonAccording to the Psi-Judges report Morrigan was responsible for over 28 murders in sector 13 alone, her red cloak had been a gift from Max Contralto because he had considered her as good as a daughter. While on her way to her next job she had encountered a wolf that turned into a man, who said his name was Kessler. Knowing the potential of this she befriended and seduced him, making him fall in love with her. Oddly enough Kessler never attacked her in wolf form and even obeyed her, so she used it to accomplish her tasks while she watched with glee. She had dressed Kessler up in a baggy dress and bonnet (to hide his muzzel) and made their way into the ConApt posing as a a member of the OAC’s, offering to do any odd jobs that Grandma Parker might need, her aunt had even come along to help out. Once the door was open Kessler had attacked her and began devouring her while Morrigan had watched. The Judges arrived at just the wrong time and ruined her fun.

Despite looking only 14 they confirmed that she was closer to 30 and they sentenced her to life in the Isocubes. Unfortunately, the information they received against Max Contralto was mostly circumspect and they couldn’t move in on him without more solid proof of misdoings. At this point though a call came in from control, informing them that the tap they had placed on Bennetti had encountered a problem, Bennetti was dead.

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