What is this?: Before diving into reading this, there are some things you need to know. I wrote this awhile ago. The concept is straightforward - What if 2000 AD allowed me a chance to write for them. What would I write. This is that story. Complete and done. It is set in the Dreddverse but you can read it without any prior knowledge of the story. If you do know the Dreddverse then you’ll notice somethings more so than others. Though Judge Dredd is in it, he isn’t the focus of this story. I do work on what I call practice concepts while working on outlines for the stories I plan to write and this happens to be one of the practice concepts.
I’ve cleaned the story up a bit, since I last shared it. You’re welcome to offer critic on what is written here and I’ll use the critic to help me become a better writer.
PROG 1 - Lost in the Black Museum
Judge Yates had guarded the Black Museum for eight weeks. She been a Street Judge for Thirty years but was part of rotation to serve in the Black Museum. While it was a reminder of the horrors Mega City One had faced, it was also a reminder of the heroes. She and another Judge was assigned to guard the body of Judge Fargo.
A small girl holding a pamphlet came into Judge Yates section. The girl looked at least three years old. Where were her parents? The girl had dark black her, grey eyes, and the clothes she wore were a patchwork of different fabrics. She approached Judge Yates her hands shaking.
“Excuse me Judge Yates.” The girl spoke.
Yates looked down. “Yes.”
“I’m Amber Night. My parents brought me. Went to bathroom. No idea where they are.”
Yates frown and kneeled down. “Amber, let’s see if we can find them.” She turned to Judge Rand. “I’ll be back.” Rand nodded.
Yates started walking with Amber. She noticed the pamphlet had parts circled on it. “Highlighted what you wanted to see?”
“No maim. Daddy had it. I wanted to look at it but he wouldn’t let me. I took it from his bag when he wasn’t looking.”
“Oh?” Yate said curious. “May I see it?”
Amber gave Yates the pamphlet. Yates frowned. The parts circled where different exhibits and what they would sell on the black market. She called command “Command. I need Judges at the black museum. Possibly robber in progress.”
“Roger. Yates. Judge’s in route five minutes. Can you intervene?”
“Negative I’m escorting a lost child at the moment. Also check the relative records for Amber Night. Let me contact Judge Rand.” She changed her comm to radio Judge Rand.
“Rand. This is Yates. Possible preps on premise. I’ve come across their plans and they are heading to your area.”
“Let me know when you have the preps. I have a few extra charges to give to them.”
She change her radio back to command. “Command. Rand is on it. Yates out.”
“Am I in trouble?”
“No.” Yates considered how she could keep Amber safe. She couldn’t take them to her parents nor where they could be. “Tell me Amber, did your Parents go with through the history of Law section?”
“Let’s start there.”
The reached that section. Yates knew that Amber parents weren’t likely to come there. “Do you know the history of the Judges?”
“What do you know about the Judges?”
“They are the Law.”
Yates nodded. “Never forget that. How about we wait here for your parents? While we wait I can give you a lesson of the history of the Judges?”
Amber nodded. Yates guided her over to a bench and sat down.
Yates helmet comms went off. “Yates. This is Command.”
“Amber Knight only relatives are her parents.”
“Understood. Let me know when Judge Rand has caught the preps. I’ll get back to you.”
Yates looked down at Amber. She told Amber the history of how the Judges came about. She noticed Amber had paid attention to every word.
“Yates.” Rand radioed to her.
“The preps put up a fight. Their dead.”
“Thanks Rand. I’m going to handle something sensitive. I’m heading out.”
“Understood. I’ll cover till you get back.”
She squatted in front of Amber. “Amber. The pamphlet you showed me. Your parents planned to rob this place. They brought you here and abandoned you. They tried to fight a judge. They died. Do you understand?”
Amber nodded. “They broke the law. The law answered.”
Strange answer but maybe… “Tell me Amber. Do you like Judges?”
“And the law?”
“Ever consider being a Judge?”
“I’m not sure.”
“I have two places to take you Amber. The orphanage or Judge School. There is no guarantee you’d make it at Judge School. How about you choose?”
Amber put her finger on her lip and thought for a moment. “I chose the Law.”
Yates nodded and left with Amber to Judge School.
PROG 2 - A Non-PSI PSI Cadet?
Judge Yates didn’t know what Judge Ramst, the head of the PSI section of the Judge School, with her. She had come from patrol and was sitting in his office waiting for him to come into the room. PSIs were strange to her but she saw value in what they did even if she didn’t understand it.
Judge Ramst walked in and sat across from her. “Thank for coming Judge Yates. I’m wanted to speak with you about one of our cadets. Cadet Night I want you to assess her.”
“Is that normal PSI Division?”
“Yes. However her abilities are dormant. We’ve kept her in the program. She passed her hot dog run. All that is left is for a Judge assessment of her. It makes sense for a Street Judge to do it. The Chief Judge recommend you.”
“Will she still be apart of the PSI if I pass her?”
“Yes. There is a minor manifestation.”
“She has a k-9. The dog is psychically link to her.”
“That can happen with training.”
“True. Thing is. She pointed at her dog as puppy and it instantly obeyed. No training from us.”
“Doesn’t that mean she isn’t dormant? Her ability is to command animals.”
“No. We tested her commanding more and different animals. It didn’t work. We think this is just stage 1 and not her final psi ability.”
“Is this really fair to her? I brought her into the program.”
“True but you haven’t stayed in contact. Just treat her like any other cadet.”
“For the record I don’t like this but I’ll do the assessment.”
“Noted. You’ll find her in the cadet quarters.”
Yates left and headed for the quarters. The PSI Cadet quarters were separate from the normal cadets. She found Cadet Night at a desk reading A Handbook on Law by Judge Dredd. Night looked nothing like a PSI. Her hair was a dark red buzz. She wore no lipstick. Next to sitting at attention was a German Shepard with a harness with Justice Dept on the sides. Yates recalled Nights hair being black.
Yates walked over and saw several passages highlighted. “Cadet Night.”
Night stood up attention. “Maim.”
“I’m your accessing Judge. You’ll have the run of the show. I’ll be keeping note of everything you do. You pass or fail on my word alone.”
“Understood.” Night put on her white helmet. Her dog came and stood next to her as she place her hand on the harness. “Could we patrol this sector?”
“Sure. Have a place in mind?”
“The Watson Block.”
Yates motioned for her to lead on. The Watson Block was a short walking away from the Judge School. It looked like it didn’t belong in Mega City One with no graffiti, steel, and glass. It didn’t seem a place for lawbreakers. On the first floor night went up to the manager’s office door and knocked.
The door opened robot answered “Ah Judges what can I do for you?”
“”We’re here to inspect the office.” The cadet stepped into the office move the robot aside.
“I assure you everything is in order.”
Yates took note of Night looking over every corner of the office. Her dog pulled her over to a vent. She pulled off the vent and found another ledger. She went over to the robot. “Falsifying records and lying to two judges. 60 years in the cube.” She cuffed him.
“The maximum sentence?” Yates said.
“The law is the law. If it were just me it would have been 40.”
“Harsh but respectable.” Yates radioed to central. “Central send a wagon to Watson Block have a robot for pick up.”
“You go stand outside and wait for the patrol to pick you up.” Yates said.
The robot went outside.
“How’d you know?”
“I didn’t but how often do Judges inspect the manager’s office of a block?”
“Yet we just did. It irritates me to think of past things being missed.”
“Is there another reason we’re here?”
“Yes. Sugar. Few months ago I caught Cadets with Sugar. They’re expelled. I realized the place had to be nearby and likely here. I reported my suspicions but no one ever checked it out.”
Yates frowned. Whoever ignored that report was a fool in her mind. Sugar was a dangerous addictive drug. “Where should we start?”
“Robert can help with that. He can smell sugar.”
Yates nodded. Night and Robert started walking. Robert would pause to sniff. They took the elevator and Robert pushed the number 25 with his nose.
“How does he know?” Yates asked.
“I think he could be a psi himself.” Night smirked.
They stopped in front of a door. Yates used the Justice department unlocker to force the door open. The sweet smell of sugar came into the hallway. Two perps fired at them. Robert went into the apartment and bite the throat out of one of the perps. Yates killed the other perp with her Lawgiver Mark II. They went into the apartment. It had twelve open barrels full of sugar.
“Excellent work Cadet. How would you have ruled if we caught them?”
“230 years in the cube.”
Yates felt pity for any perp caught by Night as a Judge.
“Central this is Yates. We need a team to dispose of sugar at Watson block.”
“Understood. ETA 10 minutes.”
Night and Yates left the apartment and closed it back up. They stood outside of it with Robert guarding the door.
Yates submitted her report through her wrist computer Night had passed.
The sound of the side stairwell door opening came from around the corner. A man came around the corner. Upon seeing the judges he fired at them. Robert jumped in front of the shot that would have hit Night and collapsed to the ground dead. A round shot straight through Yates’s stomach. She got a shot hitting the perp in the head.
Night came over to Yates and treated her wound. Yates was sitting on the ground leaning against the wall. Night showed no emotion even though she had lost her dog. Yates saw a Judge and not just a cadet. . In a short moment, a couple of Judges came over and into the apartment. One of them stopped to say, “Do you require aid?”
“No.” Yates said standing up. The judge moved on. “Night how about we go back to your quarters?”
They left and arrived back at Nights quarters. Night took off her helmet and sat back at the table. Yates notices eyes where no longer blue. There were orange flames swirling where color was.
PROG 3 - A Lone Fire in Sector 93 Part I
Shortly after her fire power manifested, Night was issued a fireproof uniform. Her weapons were made to withstand the heat of her own fire.
Judge Night rode her lawmaster to Sector 93 House. The sector house had the words Justice is Dead spray painted on the door. She went inside. There was trash and discarded paper. Whoever was in charge was breaking several Justice Hall codes. She wrote down every violation into her wrist computer as she headed to the Chief Sector’s office.
Sitting behind the desk covered out of uniform was a round man. He looked at her with a raised eyebrow, “Who are you?”
Knight had started recording and broadcasting to command when she entered the office. “Sir, I’m Judge Night reporting for duty.”
The man laughed. “What? This is a joke.”
“No joke sir. Just check your computer.”
He turned on the computer at his desk. “You asked for this and a PSI? Alright. You’re our sixth Judge. Nothing pressing at the moment. Just go on patrol.” He waved her off.
“Sir. Are you and those under you aware of the codes this sector house is breaking?”
“Oh the mess. Yeah that’s a top priority to fix. We’ll get to it eventually.”
“Command to Judge Night,” a female judge said on her comms. She put it on open to come out the speak on the wrist command.
“Go ahead command. You’re on speak so the sector chief can hear you.” She said.
The man looked at her puzzled.
“We’ve received your report. SJS meant to head to that sector for months to take care of the five Judges. The Chief Sector Judge is wanted for bribery, the others are wanted for various crimes. You’re authorized to arrest them or if they resist, kill. You’ll be the acting Chief Sector Judge till we assign someone to come there.”
“Understood.” She he turned off her comms. She held out her right hand with the palm open. “It’s Titian for you scum.”
He reached under his desk. Before he got a chance to fire, blue fire shot out from her right hand. He screamed as he burnt alive. His skeleton turned to ash. She closed her hand and went behind his desk. She type a command to return the four other Judges to the sector house and see the Chief Sector Judge in the office. She went over to the door of the of the office and set up a Stomm Gas trap. She went behind the desk and readied her Lawgiver Mark IIHR. “Stun.” She said. Her Lawgiver switched to stun mode. Several moments later the door open trigger the trap.
She put on respirator. The other judges were doing the same. She fired at the four figures in the smoke. They fell. The gas cleared. She went over and cuffed all four of the judges. It took her time to drag each one of them into a cell. When she finished she called command.
“Command this is Night. Four of the judges were captured. One of them executed. No meat wagon needed.”
“Understood. SJS will retrieve the Judges when they’re able to. They’ll call you to arrange a time for pickup.”
“Night out.” She received her lawmaster and parked it inside the sector house garage. She went to work get the inside of the sector house up to code. Once she finished, she went into the chief sector’s office. She set up the camera on the desk computer.
“Command. This is Night. Requesting permission to broadcast on all channels for Sector 93.”
She turned on the camera and started broadcasting. All tvs, radios, and speakers in Sector 93 were broadcasting her. Some crowds gathered around the set, others booed, perps quivered, and gang leaders frowned.
“Sector 93. I’m Judge Night. For decades your sector has been left to rot. Crime has festered, Judges abandoned and what you were left with is a joke. No more. Those judges are gone. I’m here.” She paused and took off her helmet so they could see her eyes. She glared. “Make no mistake I’m here to purge crime from this sector. To the scum I give you a chance to turn yourself in now. Judgement has come Sector 93 and I’ll find you.”
PROG 4 - A Lone Fire in Sector 93 Part II
Judge Night was studying a map of Sector 93. 5 million lived in the sector and there was only one judge. She had arranged for neighboring sectors to house the perps she would catch till they were transferred to cubes. After her broadcast, not a single person turned themselves in. It never was easy in Mega City One.
The monitor on the computer flashed and a male SJS Judge appeared on screen. “Judge Night?”
“Yes. How can I help?”
“Arranging a time to pick up the Judges you caught. We’ll be your area tomorrow. Would the morning work?”
“That’s fine. I’ll see you then.” She went to press off but then the SJS interrupted.
“We’d also like to meet with you for a moment before the transfer.”
“Its a conversation best had in person.” The imaged faded away.
She frowned. The SJS wanted to meet with her. She didn’t like that. She returned her focus back to the map. The sector needed a demonstration that she was not to be mocked. If there was a block war in her sector, that would be one way of doing it.
“Central this is Night.”
“Yes Judge Night.”
“Is there a block war anywhere in Sector 93?”
“Yes. The Abby Block is fighting the Gib Block. It started two days ago. Would you like the other sectors to help?”
“No. I’ll handle this. Also broadcast me during my time in that area for Sector 93 to all see.”
“Will do. Good luck.”
She left for the Abby and Gib Block. The people in the mega blocks were shooting at each other. “Bike tap into the comms for the Abby and Gib block.” The screen on the bike gave the messaged she now had access to comms.
“Citizens of Abby and Gib block. Cease your fighting. Turn ourselves in.”
The residents of both blocks started to fire at her. A fire wall appeared and blocked the shoots. She sighed and got off the lawmaster.
Each of the blocks had stumm installed in case of block wars. All a judge just had to get to the front of the building. Night wasn’t going to do this. She went out to the center between the two buildings. They were still fire and the wall of fire kept blocking her. It was almost a sphere.
She stood for an hour and then they
Ran out of bullets. The residents didn’t thank she could get to them. She was still connected to their block comms. “Citizens of Abby and Gibs Block. You failed to cease-fire. You disobeyed an order from a judge. You attempted to assassinate a judge. Literred. And likely some of you don’t have a weapons permit. Most of these charges come with cube time. All except one.”
She held out one hand palm out to the Abby Block and her other hand palm out to the Gibs block.
“The sentence for attempt on a judge life is death.”
A wall of fire erupted on both of the blocks. Thousands screamed as the burned. When the scream stopped, She closed her hand and the walls of fire vanished leaving behind scorch marks on the blocks.
“Those of you left. Surrender now or I will finish both blocks.”
Thousand came out with their hands up and their weapons down at her feet.
She turned off her connection to the block comms and called Central. “Central. Night here. I need pick up at Abby and Gibs. Send wagons.”
“Understood. They will be there in ten. Do you want us to keep broadcasting?”
“Yes. Till they leave on the wagons.”
She turned to face her prisoners.
“For participating in a block war. All of you get 30 years in the cube. Consider this a mercy sentence.”
She had just declared war on crime in a very loud and violent way. Some would surrender. Others would fight. The Law would answer and Judgement would be rendered.
PROG 5 - A Lone Fire in Sector 93 Part III
The SJS had arrived at 4:00 AM. Night had just step out of the sleep machine when they arrived. She was sitting in her office with a female SJS Judge Rook.
“The SJS oncept of time hasn’t changed, I see.”
“It keeps Judges on their toes. Never know when you’re up for integration.”
“Is that what this is? Normally five other SJS Judges are required.”
“No. I’m here to offer you a position with us.”
Night wanted to frown but she folded her hands. She wanted no part of being apart of the SJS. She wanted to fight crime and help the city. SJS always worried her. Their mindset was to find a Judges guilty and she didn’t believe in that type of law.
“I’m a PSI Judge. What interest does the SJS have in me?”
“How many fellow cadets did you turn in tips for?”
“I don’t remember.”
“Twenty four. Now we hear you caught five corrupt judges. You’re practically already SJS. So what do you say? Join us and we can get you out of here. Finding the corrupt Judges.”
“With respect no. You’ve seen my file I believe, so you know I chose this. I think I can do good here.”
“I see. Good day Judge Night. I hope you succeed.” Rook stood up and left.
Night returned to studying here sector map. She expected retaliation for what she was doing but she was planning a preemptive strike. Crime would try to go after her. They knew she had fire powers. She typed out a command to isolate who owned facilities for keeping things cold. The name Urcia Gorbev came up. He had a long wrap sheet of suspicions but no one had done a proper investigation. If she captured him, she’d be able to make him give up info on his partners. She smiled as she started digging into the history of the buildings Urcia owned. He forgot to renew his license for operating them. Which meant she could cut off the power to them.
“Central. This is Night. Urcia Gorbev has forgotten to renew the license for operating his ice facilities. Shut off power. And send him a notice.”
“Power has been shut off.”
Meanwhile at Wesker’s Bar, the elite crime bosses of Sector 93 had called an emergency meeting. Taylor of the Rectangled, Don Bobby of the Richard Mafia, Sally leader of the Yells, and Urcia Gorbev leader of the Angry Slavs.
“Thank you all for coming.” Don Bobby spoke. He was a suave elder gentleman with a long white bread. “We all know why I called this meeting. This new Judge is a problem.”
“She’s a fire PSI, how do we take care of that?” Taylor said. He was a young man wearing a shirt with a rectangle on it.
“Can we buy her?” Sally said. She was a young woman wearing a shirt with exclamation marks on it.
“No. She seems obsessed with the law. We saw what she did. Like a machine.” Urcia said. He was man dressed in heavy fur wearing a viking hat.
“We set a trap for her. Make it look like we’re trading arms or some such at Urcia’s Freezing Center. Once she goes in, freeze her.” Don Bobby said.
The others nodded in agreement.
“Good. Make it tonight. Judge Night will go out cold.”
A man came into the room and whispered to Urcia. He frowned and waved the man away. “Don Bobby, I apologize. My man has just informed my power was cut off by the Justice Department for all of my buildings that can freeze.”
The others in the room looked at Don Bobby.
“Not only is she ruthless but she’s a genius too. Just our look. Okay. If a trap won’t work, we’ll need to beat her with a PSI assassin. It won’t be cheap either. We’ll all have to chip in for this. Otherwise we’ll be in trouble.”
They nodded in agreement.
“I’ll make the call. Urcia go into hiding. Everyone else do nothing to draw attention to yourself. I have no idea how long it’ll take for the assassin to come here. I assure you all Judge Night will die. Her fire will go out in a puff of smoke.”
PROG 6 - A Lone Fire in Sector 93 Part IV
Night was checking over her lawmaster when her comms went off.
“Central to Night.”
“Go ahead central.”
“We intercepted comms of a psi assassin being hired to take you out. Chief Justice has authorized you to release your restraints if you feel the need to. She trust your judgement.”
“Understood Central. Any info on Urcia’s location?”
“Our cams show him at Qin’s Pub.”
She got on her lawmaster and headed for Qin’s Pub. The pub was near the Winchester block, which was the most crime ridden part of Sector 93. She parked out front. The entrance had four men guarding it on the sides. She heading up stairs and into the pub. There was Urcia eating a sandwich.
“Judge. What can I do for you?”
“Urcia for failure to renew your building operating license, causing mass unemployment, I sentence you to Ten years in the cubes.” She cuffed him as he looked at her stunned. She started to drag him outside.
“Central. Need a pickup to bring to Sector 93 House.”
“Closest Unit will be there in 10 minutes.”
Night attached Urcia to a nearby light pole. She took off her gloves and helmet. This was too easy and she knew this was a trap for her. On her right wrist she had the restraint bracelet. It kept her powers from being full strength. She could burn Sector 93 if she wasn’t careful. She just had to push a button to go all out.
She felt a PSI wave hit her in the back but she withstood it. She turned and faced a man wearing a clown mask laughing.
“Attempted murder of Judge. Judgement. Death.” She held up her hand and sent fire at him. He projected a shield that withstood the attack.
“Aww did you expect it to be easy.” He mocked.
“Nothing stands in the way of judgement punk.” She press the button on her bracket.
Her whole body became a living flame brighter than the sun. The assassin shielded his eyes. Night grabbed him by the neck and turned him into ash. She pushed the button on her bracket again and returned to normal.
“I can’t see.” Urcia said.
Night put her helmet and gloves back on. She walked over to him. “You saw what I can do. If you ever want to see again. Tell me about your friends.”
“You’re a monster.”
“No I’m the law.”
“Alright. I’ll give you what you want.”
“Do I get time off for helping you?”
“No. You get your sight back.”
A wagon arrived and took Urcia away. She looked at her restraint bracelet. There were cracks but it would hold. She headed for her sector house. Judgement was in Sector 93 and crime was about to face her swift force.
PROG 7 - A Lone Fire in Sector 93 Part V
Night had finished sending in her report on the intel Urcia had given her. She had the locations of all the major operations. If she had eighty other Judges, she could conduct a raid and hit them all at once.
“Night to Central.” She said.
“Go Ahead Night.”
“Request for any backup. Got hot info I need to act on immediately. I need enough for a raid.”
“Sorry to report most sectors are dealing with other problems. We’ll put the word out and if any are available we’ll call you back.”
Night sat down at her desk and looked over the map of her sector with a frown. She’d likely only be able to hit one area. If she could get them all in one place, it would solve her number issue. She had gotten intel they had all been at one place but after she captured Urcia she expecedt most of them would run by now. There had been no sign of any of the leaders moving but she knew they could have ways of evading the surveillance.
“Central to Night.”
“Judge Dredd is on his way to you. He’ll be with you shortly.”
Judge Dredd. She could hardly believe it but she wasn’t surprised. Dredd was an icon, myth, hero, and legend among the Judges. He was law incarnate. She respected his dedication and had studied his case files while at school. She did wonder why he was coming to help her sector.
A grim faced Judge walked into her office. There stood Judge Dredd even at his age, he wasl the law. He came over to the table. “Judge Night. I’m here to help. Where do you need me?” he said.
“Thank you for coming. I wish we could take all the targets but there are only two of us. We’ll only be able to get two of the main targets but that will help this sector immensely. I have intel the Walter Block is Don Bobby’s headquarters. He is on the top floor. I want you to handle that. I’ll be at the Astrid Block going after Taylor Nix.”
Dredd looked over the map. “Understood.” He walked out.
She went out to her bike and road to Astrid Block. Crime in Sector 93 was about to hit hard and fast by judgement. Judge Night was ready to render it.
PROG 8 - A Lone Fire in Sector 93 Part VI - The last PROG
The Astrid Block erupted into gunfire. Night’s fire kept the shots from connecting.
“Night.” Dredd said on her comms.
“Dredd. I’m under heavy fire. You okay?”
“Yes. Problem is no one is here. I found a message. They are all converging on you. I’m on my way.”
“No it’s too risky. The city still needs you. I’ll handle this. Don’t worry.”
Night moved slowly forward. It was hard to maintain her fire shield. She saw other cars pull up and start firing. It was all out war on all sides.
“Night to central.”
“Go ahead Night.”
“Initiate Lock down for the Astrid Block sector.”
“You’ll be cut off though.”
“Do it. Then release it in five minutes.”
The Astrid Bock started to shake as the walls raised and sealed the block in on solid slab of granite. Night moved to the center. The gunfire still raged against her. She pressed the button her watch. The fire erupted and consumed everything inside the Astrid Block. The screams echoed and then silence.
Dredd arrived outside the Astrid Block. The walls came down. There was ash everywhere. In the center he found Night collapsed. He checked her plus. It was faint.
“Night to central send a medic for a Judge.”
“One on the way.”
He stayed by Night. The medic arrived. “What happened to her?”
the medic asked.
“She brought Judgement to Sector 93. Treat her well. I’ll handle the sector till she recovers.” Dredd left.
Sector 93 became one of the lowest crime rates part of Mega City One. Night was finally assigned eighty Judges to take care of her sector. There is a rumor among the Judges that Night had been added to the clone program but no one knows for sure. If you find yourself in Sector 93 remember Judgement reigns there.