2/9.

 

That evening, Dredd didn’t have much of an appetite at chow time and couldn’t sleep at all during the night and he decided to go for a walk in the night to try and clear his head and work out what to do. At one point he found himself near to the Synthi-Food plant and some shuffling noises seemed to be coming from round the back of the building, so he thought he  had better investigate. What he saw saw when he peered around the corner made his jaw drop and he said, “HOLY DROKK!!” to himself!

There were parked a fleet of black trucks and judges dressed in black with black helmets on were unloading body bags out of the trucks and carrying them into the back of the plant!!

“So THIS is the fuel that Grimm was on about!” Dredd thought,

“They”re actually killing the citizens to make food to feed back to the citizens again!”

Dredd had now had enough. He had sworn to uphold the law, but not THAT law. That law is wrong and it was up to him and his law to try and do something about it.

“It’s a about time I gave these creeps a little taste of MY law, before I leave this Hell-hole”, he thought, and started to formulate some sort of plan……

“First thing is I need to know the layout of the Grand Halls of Justice. Gonna have to create some BIG distractions!” So he made his way back towards the Grand Halls and, once there, made his way down the exterior of the right-hand side. He went past the windows of the grand dining hall, past some frosted windows of what would have been the kitchens and when he came to a huge plain wall, made a mental note that this is where the huge larders would be. He then made his way towards the back of the building, which would be the morgue, as this was where the black trucks were coming from. Again, he could hear some movements coming from behind there as well. Thinking it  would be the black trucks or their occupants, he cautiously peered around the corner. But what he saw was nothing at all to do with the Justice Dept. There were a quartet of characters, dressed in dark clothes, their faces blacked up, whispering amongst themselves and surreptitiously filming the black trucks parked there on a hand-held device.

“What are you punks doing out after curfew?”, Dredd asked, ” You got a death wish, or something?”

“A J-J-Judge!”, a tall, lanky, moustachioed one gasped, “We’ve had it!”

“Relax”,  said Dredd, “I ain’t from around these parts! I got no affinity with them sick creeps in there”, he continued, thumbing towards the Grand Halls, “and I certainly ain’t got no intentions of enforcing their sick laws, either! You punks can go where the heck you like, as far as I’m concerned!

Who the blazes are you, anyways?”

“Don’t tell him, Smithy!”, said the lanky one to the apparent ring-leader, who was sporting a black beret.

Smithy turned around and gave him a dirty look and said, “You idiot, Tex!”

“If you’re not a Judge, why are you dressed like some kind of Judge?”, asked Smithy.

“Because I am a Judge! – From another place!”, answered Dredd, “and I just want to get back to where I once belonged, without those sickos following me”, he continued, ” ‘cept those creeps have got what I need, back at Sector House 39!”

“Well, we’re the P.P.F.!”, boasted Smithy.

“That supposed to mean something?”, asked Dredd.

“The P.P.F.!”, repeated Smithy, “- the People’s Popular Front! We’re freedom fighters, – the resistance, and we know what the Judges are up to! We’ve got it all captured here on film”, he continued, pointing to his camera, “and once the people see what they’re doing there’s going to be a revolution here in Metro City!”

“You say you want a revolution”, said Dredd, “well, you know, we all want to change the world!”

“Come the glorious day, all the murdering Judges are going to be first against the wall!”, promised Smithy. “Well, don’t expect me to weep none for any of ’em!”, retorted Dredd.

“You could join us!”, blurted Smithy, “You could help us bring about change! I’m Smudger Smith, that’s Tex”, he said,

2/8.

Once the truck was loaded up, they all set off for the spot where Dredd had materialised, Gold and Mills in the truck, following Dobie, Boyle and Dredd on their bikes. When they found the place, Gold looked on, still sat in the truck, as the other four positioned the equipment into place and then Dobie and Boyle rode down about 100 yards either side of the arch to hold up any traffic in both directions. Then Dredd slowly rode his bike in between the two electromagnets and underneath the arch, switched off, dismounted and waited. Finally, Mills signalled to Gold and he got out, walked over to one of the electromagnets and he and Mills hit the big red buttons in unison. What followed was a very loud humming, intense vibrations shaking through Dredd’s body, the arch was glowing with what looked like Northern Lights and visibility of everything inside the arch became difficult and too blurry for those outside to focus on. Dredd felt exactly the same as he did before and again passed out.

But no blue/white flash.

When it became evident to Mills that he had been in there too long and that no portal was going to open and Dredd

wasn’t   going to dematerialise, he yelled over to Gold, “Hit the black button!”, and he did likewise.

It had failed.

Dredd was not happy when he came round, but he was far too groggy for anyone to notice.

“Why didn’t it work?”, he asked Mills.

“I’m not sure”, he replied, “I suspect that there is something missing from the equation. Some vital ingredient that would act as a conduit. We need to figure it out. Try and remember everything you can about the time you came through. If we work out what we need, we can try again tomorrow. Your body wouldn’t be able to stand up to another attempt, until you are rested. We will return to Sector House 39 now. Get some rest when we get there!”

So the equipment was loaded back into the truck again and they made their way back again.

“Just leave it here on the cargo bay”, Gold ordered when they got back, “ready for easy loading next time it is needed!”

For the remainder of the afternoon, Dredd was going through it all in his head in the sector house rest room. “One thing I just don”t get”, he thought, “is why didn’t Robot Archie come through with me, when my Lawmaster and Lawgiver did? ….Perhaps it was something it was made of, but it’s just the usual metals, titanium, steel, cobalt. The only unusual metal is the zontonium nuts and bolts….”

“Wait a minute!”, he suddenly stopped and concentrated. “I bet THAT’S it! I was going to dismantle Rusty with a zontonium wrench, but THAT didn’t come through either! – Put some zontonium into the electromagnetic field and it opens a rift and pushes everything else through!”

“I’ve gotta tell Mills”, he said out loud and rushed out of the rest room. As he was nearing Mills’ laboratory, the door was slightly ajar and he overheard Mills and Gold talking together.

“Have you figured out what that missing catalyst is yet?”, Gold asked of Mills.

“It’s not that easy, it could be almost anything!”, replied Mills, “If Dredd can”t remember himself, have Henderson poke around in his brain to see exactly what happened that day”, suggested Mills.

“Do you realise that once we give Beanie Dredd’s city on a plate, it’ll mean BIG promotions for us two?”, Gold said, “….I’m talking about dining at Bean’s table!”

Dredd stopped dead.

“So that’s what they’re up to! I knew they were up to something!”, he thought to himself. “Can’t let them know about the zontonium now, no matter what, we can’t have them sick creeps crawling over Mega City One! I’ve got to try and figure out some way of getting back by myself now!”

He turned around and headed for the doors. “Gotta take a walk to think what to do!”, he thought, “….And must steer clear of Morticea!”

2/7.

The next morning, all the judges made their ways to their various sector houses. Dredd thought, “I’ll just tag along and follow Laurel & Hardy in”, but he didn’t have much to say.

Back at their sector house, Gold called him in. “Good news, Dredd! – We’ll be ready to  conduct the experiment first thing this afternoon! Let’ s hope we can successfully send you on your way, eh?”

Dredd noticed another judge in the room, with his back towards them, silently staring out of the window. “But first, we have a farewell treat in store for you! News of our guest from a parallel universe has spread like wildfire through the Grand Halls and a very important man indeed wants to meet you! This is Metro City’s finest judge, Jim Grimm!”, he continued, gesturing towards the still stationary judge. “Grimm is a true legend in Metro City! Nobody has caught as many crims as him! And he wishes to show you how he does it, this morning. You should be very proud, for it is an absolute honour to ride with him!

Grimm slowly turned around and stood before him, it was like looking at a mirror reflection of himself, only very unshaven, which made him look even meaner!

The two men grunted at each other, as they left the room together.

“Come on, Dredd”, Grimm gruffly said, “and I’ll show you how REAL crime-fighting is done!”

What followed, though, was an absolute travesty of justice. Grimm went on a mad spree, arresting anyone and everyone for anything and everything! Amongst the arrested were a vicar, a little old lady, a nun and even a little girl, holding a teddy bear!

Dredd felt sickened inside, as he silently witnessed it all, quietly biding his time, waiting for the afternoon.

But, when the time was getting near to 11 a.m., Grimm said, “Come on, Dredd, I want to see all those crims I got yesterday get justice!”

And they headed back towards the Grand Halls of Justice. The building itself was built like a huge square, with a giant courtyard on the inside of the four walls and, as they made their way into a room with a balcony overlooking the courtyard, Dredd could not believe his eyes at what he saw in the yard. It was FULL of rows and rows of gallows, hundreds of them! And each one of them had a noose hanging from it around someone’s neck, waiting to be hanged!

A bell chimed 11 and Chief Judge Bean appeared on the back grand balcony, clutching his book of the law.

“THESE CRIMS HAVE BLUNTED THEIR TEETH,” he announced, “AND MUST PAY THE PRICE.

LET JUSTICE BE DONE.

AMEN.”

And judges everywhere echoed “AMEN”, as Bean pulled a large lever towards him on his  balcony and all the prisoners were left dangling simultaneously. Then Bean silently turned around and went back inside.

“Bit harsh, isn’t it?” commented Dredd.

“But necessary,” responded Grimm, ” new citizens are being born every second in Metro City. We have to execute the crims to make room for the new arrivals!”

“What happens to all the stiffs?”, asked Dredd.

“They get sent to ReSyk!”, answered Grimm.

“And then what?”, asked Dredd.

“Get broken down into key elements, – carbon mainly, for fuel. We can’t afford to waste valuable commodities here in Metro City!”, he replied.

“Well, it’s been an experience!”, said Dredd, “but I gotta get ready for a trip!”

And he left, heading for the sector house, absolutely dumbfounded!

“Bonkers!”, he thought, “They’re all absolutely raving, Drokkin’ bonkers! Gotta get me outta this Hell-Hole!”

That afternoon,  back at the sector house, the creepy Gold took Dredd to the back of the building, where there was a cargo bay, which already had two large electromagnets and a metallic arch, about the size of football goalposts waiting to be loaded on to a truck. Mills was there, along with Dobie and Boyle and they went through the forthcoming procedure,  before loading them into the back of the truck.

“It’s surprisingly light!”, Dredd said of the arch.

“That’s because it had to be made out of aluminium, so as not to be affected by the electromagnetic field”, explained Mills.

 

2/6.

They said that crime was rife, except for between the hours of midnight and 6 a.m., when it was curfew and only judges were allowed outdoors.

“Right, let’s go catch us some crims, shall we?”, said Boyle and during the course of the afternoon, not only did they catch robbers and muggers and pick-pockets, etc., but also a lot of cits were arrested for being in possession of contraband – flour!

“A lot of crims, if they get their hands on illegal flour can start illegal bakeries in their kitchens,” Boyle said, “and they can earn a fortune selling bread on the streets”.

“But, don’t you worry,” said Boyle, “We’ll flush them all out!”

“It’s even worse than that”, said Dobie, “some crims set up illicit distilleries and any liquid they can get their hands on, they distill the water out of it and sell it in their seedy dives!”

“Yeah, there’s a real big problem with bootleg liquid in this city,” agreed Boyle.

BUT, cits were also being arrested for the most trivial of crimes, one heavily-pregnant woman had a piece of litter accidentally drift out of her bag, another was arrested for stubbing his toe and cussing, another, when asked where he was going by Dobie, told a lie, as registered on their lie detectors.

All these were arrested on the spot, rounded up, whilst the judges sent for their own sector meat wagons to take them all in.

“What about judgement?” asked Dredd.

“They are all guilty as charged of breaking the law, we have judged them so,” said Dobie.

“Well, what about justice then” asked Dredd.

“Ah, the chief judge himself likes to dispense justice himself personally every morning at 11a.m.”,  said Boyle,

“Anyway, that was a good days work, time to head for the Grand Halls of Justice. It’s nearly chow time!”

They marched through the halls in the building and through some double-doors,  into the judges’ giant dining hall and Dredd couldn’t believe his eyes when he saw what was lined up on the tables! All the tables were piled high with veritable banquets of medieval proportions of delicious foods!

They made their way to a table stood around it and Dobie said,

“We have to wait for the Chief Judge”.

They didn’t have to wait long and all were silent as he strode down the centre of the hall, bearded, wearing a black top hat, with a black cape flowing, carrying a book of the law in one hand and flanked by his aides on either side.

[ based on Paul Newman’s Judge Roy Bean!]

“Sit, my judges,” Chief Judge Bean said, “and eat to give you the strength to fight another day’s crime and make this glorious city of ours a safe place to live in.

Let Justice Be Done!

Amen.”

And everyone replied,

“Amen”.

Then a couple of judges wearing chefs’ hats carried a huge silver platter up to the Chiefs table at the top of the room, with a dead swan on it!!

The judges ate heartily, but Dredd only ate an adequate ammount.

“I can’t stand gluttony”, he thought to himself, “-all these greedy judges ramming it into their fat mouths, – they’re all gonna end up like Two-Ton Tony Tubbs!”

None of the day’s events sat right in Dredd’s head. “No wonder they need so much sleep with all that in their bellies!”, he thought to himself in his quarters.

“It ain’t what I call a fair system when the judges get to eat like kings, whilst everyone else has to eat crud.

I’m just gonna bide my time and hopefully I’ll be out of here tomorrow!”

 

2/5.

The following morning, Dobie came in to collect Dredd and tossed him a cereal bar, “Here Dredd, chomp on this, we’ll get a hot drink back at the Sector House.”

“Hope it ain’t ‘Umpty Candy’!”, remarked Dredd.

[N.B. Dobie looked at Dredd with a ? over his head at this remark!]

Back at the Sector House, Gold said, “Ah, Dredd, Mills has got a team of top technicians working on that arch. All being well, we should be ready for a trial run tomorrow.”

“Sure do appreciate you guys going to all this trouble on my account”, said Dredd, “Been going out of my head, here!”

“You’re a Judge”, retorted Gold, “it would be a crime not to help a fellow Judge! – And we can”t have crime in Metro City!”, he joked.

“Hmmm”, thought Dredd suspiciously, “that sounds just a little bit TOO helpful! Something don’t smell right, here!”

Gold said, “For now, Dobie and Boyle here will give you the grand tour of our proud city, show you the sights, let you see crime-fighting in action. There’s plenty to see to alleviate the wait.”

So what followed was the grand tour of Metro City, starting off with a nursery, where toddlers and tots were taught to recite lines such as ” I must not tell lies;

I must not spit;

I must not break the law; etc., etc.” over and over again.

“It’s never too early to start learning the law!”, said Boyle.

They then moved on to an infants’ school where impeccably – behaved infants were paying attention as complicated laws were being chalked on the blackboard.

“We try and teach every child to be a law-abiding cit from the very start!”, said Dobie, but still some of them turn “crim”!”

“What are the main crimes you have to deal with?”, asked Dredd, ” Murder? Theft?”

” There IS only one crime!”, Dobie said,” and that’s ‘ to break the law’! It’s illegal!”

“And that’s what separates the law-abidin’ cits from the crims!”, said Boyle.

They move on to the Academy Of Law. “Many strive to make the Law their career”, said Dobie, “but only the best of best ever make it to become Judges.”

“Same in Mega City One”, said Dredd.

Next came the synthi-food plant, where Dredd was told that because of the huge population in Metro City that there simply wasn’t enough natural food to feed the cits, so to avoid anyone going hungry, four square meals a day were manufactured here and distributed to everyone.

Dredd noticed that a huge metal door separated most of the plant from public view, with ‘AUTHORISED ADMITTANCE ONLY BEYOND THIS POINT’. “That where they actually manufacture it?”, asked Dredd.

” Yep, but we can’t go back there for hygiene reasons!”, said Boyle.

“Don’t worry, we’ve always got a Judge back there, though, to oversee and make sure that no crime goes on!”, said Dobie.

He showed Dredd,  by going over to the door, where there was a red button with ‘JUDGES ONLY’ written on the button’s gold surround. He pressed the buzzer and a hatch slid open on the door, to reveal a judge wearing a white helmet and with a hygiene face mask on, the other side of the door.

“Everything all right back there, Wagner?”, asked Dobie.

“Sure thing, Dobie”, replied Wagner and slid the hatch shut again.

On the conveyor belts, at the end of the production lines, Dredd saw a  never-ending stream of dark green cubes  [approx 3cm cubed]

rolling along and being packed into boxes, ready for distribution.

“Tastes like crud, but contains all the necessary nutrients needed for a healthy, balanced diet”, adds Boyle. Dredd picks one up and is about to take a bite, when Dobie halts him and says,”We get to eat later, in the Grand Halls of Justice.”

During the course of the day, whilst they were showing Dredd the ropes, they explained to Dredd that they had targets to meet to rid the streets of as many crims as possible to make Metro City as safe a place as possible for the law-abiding cits to live in.

2/4.

On reaching the Grand Halls, Dobie told Dredd that they would have a peaceful night, because Metro City had an enforced curfew. Nobody was allowed outdoors  between the hours of midnight and 6 a.m., except Judges. There was a skeleton crew of Judges on duty outside, during the night shift.

That night was a long one for Dredd. Unlike the Judges of Mega City One, who only need one hour’s condensed sleep per 24, the Metro City Judges seemed to need a full night’s sleep. The Grand Halls was a huge square building, made up of four separate halls, surrounding a huge courtyard, which Dredd had not yet seen. He had hastily been allocated a room in the sleeping quarters, which were at the front of the building, a modest room with a window at the front, overlooking the street below. After his usual hour, he was wide awake again and sitting on his cot, with nothing to do, but think! – Think about getting out of there and back to Mega City One! “Drokk it, I need to be doing something about it! – Something! – ANYTHING!”, he thought.

He walked over to the window, opened it and put his head outside, trying to think what to do.

To his left, he noticed a fleet of black trucks, silently departing from the back or side of the building, heading off into the night towards who knows where?……..

2/3.

So the other Judge radioed in to his Sector Chief, “Chief, we’ve got a wierd case here, it’s a tricky one and we’re not sure how to sort it out! He ain’t breakin’ any law, but he ain’t one of our citizens, so we’re bringing him in with us to see how we can sort the mess out! And, get this, he’s a JUDGE!”

So Dredd follows them in right into the heart of the teeming metropolis and into their Sector House, where the other Judge went in to see his Chief to explain the strange events and a meeting was hastily set up. Present inside the room, besides Dredd and the two judges who found him, were Sector House Chief Gold, a scientist judge, Mills, dressed in a white uniform and a Psi-Judge, – a stunning brunette beauty, called Henderson. She remained silent throughout the whole interview, as she was secretly scanning Dredd’s mind and reading all his life’s memories.

After a white, Mills explained that, “a powerful enough electro-magnetic field can actually create a tear in the very fabric of the space/time continueum, which must be what has happened, causing you to pop through from your dimension into the next one. And there are an infinite number of these

alternative versions of reality.”

“Can it be reversed?”, asked Dredd.

“In theory, I suppose”, said Mills,”if we were to set up the electro-magnetic field in the same spot where you materialised and I were to reverse the polarity, we should be able to push you back again?….”

“I’ve GOT to try!”, said Dredd.

“It’s just I’m not too happy with tearing the fabric again. It’s MUCH too dangerous!”, said Mills, “it would be far safer if I were to construct a gateway arch and create a temporary rift. That way is a much safer option all round!”

“Whatever it takes!”, said Dredd.

“Leave it with us, Dredd”, said Gold, “For now, you must stay as a guest with the Judges. You’ve already met a couple of our finest. Go with them to the halls of residence in our Grand Halls of Justice. They will sort you out with guest quarters. It’s late. They will look after you.”

“Good men, are they?”, asked Dredd.

“Dobie and Boyle?”, replied Gold, ” – they’re professionals!”

As Dredd left for the Grand Halls, following the other two, Gold said to Henderson, “Well, what did you see?”

“You wouldn’t believe it”, she replied, “their justice system is SO slack, – the whole city is absolutely TEEMING with crims! If we could follow him over there, they would be just ours for the taking! We could clean up their filthy city and start building upwards over there! We could take care of two problems in one fell swoop!”

“This gateway arch of yours, Mills, would we be able to use it more than once?”, asked Gold.

“If I just lock in the co-ordinates once he’s successfully passed through, we could pass in and out of it ourselves any times we wanted!”, answered Mills.

“How soon can you get this ready”, asked Gold.

“I’m on it!”, said Mills.

2/2.

He didn’t know how long he was out for, but when he came to he sat up, feeling groggy and rubbed his eyes, but when he could focus, he couldn’t see the weld- bot, but he couldn’t see Gil Favor and Harry Callahan tower blocks either! He didn’t recognise these blocks. He looked up and said, “Drokk!”

This was not any part of Mega City One that he had ever seen before and the tower blocks stretched up as far as the eye could see. In fact they were so high that he couldn’t see the tops of them!

[ N.B. I visualise this with Dredd saying, “Drokk!” on the last panel of a right-hand page and you turn over and see a full-page picture of Dredd staring up at the huge tower blocks. ]

He was dumfounded and tried to radio in, but got nothing.

Then he heard a sound he recognised, that of lawmasters and a couple of judges were coming towards him, BUT the blues and the reds of their uniforms were reversed! They slowed down and stopped and one of them said to him, “What have we got here, cit? Impersonating a judge, you know that’s a crime!” And Dredd said, “I ain’t impersonatin’ anyone! I AM a judge and who the heck are you guys and where is this place?”

One of them said, “Psi-detectors check out, Dobie. He ain’t lyin’!”, whilst he looked at the back of his wrist.

( These Judges came equipped with psychic lie-detectors, as standard! )

So Dredd told the two Judges what had happened, (constantly being lie-detected as he did ) and Dobie said,” Well you ain’t in no Mega City One now! You’re in Metro City and there’s no crime allowed here!”

Dredd remarked about the tower blocks and the fact that you couldn’t see the sky and they explained that over-population had meant that they had to keep building up and up, they couldn’t build out, because of the radiation from the great war. “We’ve had to build up to the  very edge of the Earth’s atmosphere”, they told Dredd, “…. Can’t build up any higher!” Artificial sunlight was provided in Metro  City by LED panels every few storeys, they explained to him. “Metro  City is the only city on this continent”, they continued, “all around us, we’re surrounded by the hostile ‘Rad-Lands’ !”

“I’ve got to get back to Mega City One!”, said Dredd, “I got urgent business there to take care of!”

“But there ain’t no such place on Earth!”, Dobie said, “….Never has been!

Listen, Judge, I ain’t got a clue what in tarnation is going on here, so better follow us in! We’ve got big brains back there who might be able to figure it out!”

 

2/1.

“A TALE OF TWO CITIES!”

 

“GET THOSE ELECTRO-MAGNETS SET UP BETWEEN GIL FAVOR AND HARRY CALLAHAN BLOCKS! I’M LURING HIM IN!”, yelled Dredd into his radio, whilst tearing down the highways of Mega City One on his Lawmaster at breakneck speed, dragging behind him a huge metal ball on a chain, sparks flying everywhere!

But Dredd wasn’t in pursuit of anyone, he was actually being pursued! What had happened earlier that day was that a huge mobile weld-bot working on one of the construction sites had started to malfunction and ended up going haywire, melting everything metal in its path with two bright blue bolts from his eyes, usually used for welding. They had tried to take it down with fire power, but these ‘bots are tough, designed to work in the harshest of conditions. And being programmed to weld, this malfunctioning piece of machinery could do some serious damage! It seemed attracted to anything metal, the bigger and heavier – the stronger the attraction to it and the stronger the urge to weld, weld, weld, resulting in one vehicle after another being either melted or blown up.

“The crazy ‘bot must have some kind of an inbuilt electromagnet”, said Dredd, when the Judges were called in, “Get me the largest wrecking ball you can find, I’m going to stop that crazy lump of tin and take it apart myself, nut by nut!”

So he radioed in to have two giant electromagnets set up, either side of the road and he was going to lure it in between them, trapping the ‘bot in a powerful electromagnetic field, immobilising it and he was going to destroy it once and for all! That was the plan and when Dredd rode in the berserk machine’s path, dragging a wrecking ball, the magnetic pull towards this heavy ball of metal immediately attracted the weld-bot’s eye-beams. The trouble was, these robots were wheeled mobiles, designed for travelling all over the Mega City from one site to another and could move pretty fast and Dredd was dragging a wrecking ball, so he really had to go some!

“They’re both set up now, Dredd!”, Control radioed to Dredd.

“About time!”, yelled Dredd, “I’ll be passing through them in about five minutes, await my command and then hit those buttons, both electromagnets full power! Don’t screw up!”

“Roger that!”, came the reply.

By the time Dredd came to the trap, “berserker-bot” was hot on his tail, firing blue beams at the wrecking ball, molten globs of metal flying everywhere,

“HIT THOSE BUTTONS!”, yelled Dredd and a loud humming sound emmitted from the electromagnets and the mighty robot went silent and halted immediately trapped inside the powerful electromagnetic field! Dredd looked back over his shoulder and when he saw his plan had worked, came to a halt, unhooked the chain with what was left of the wrecking ball, then got back on his bike and slowly rode back to the robot, radioing in to Control, that he was “Going to take that heap of scrap to bits”, as he got closer. Inside the electromagnetic field, Dredd found it very difficult to move, as he dismounted his bike and went towards the machine, carrying his Lawgiver and a zontonium wrench, the only alloy strong enough to dismantle this ‘bot! It was like trying to walk through invisible water, but as he struggled  closer, the robot started to fizzle out, sparks flying everywhere, crackles of electricity, then the lights of its eyes went dimmer, then out and the machine died. But Dredd wasn’t going to take any chances, he was still going to dismantle it, piece by piece.

Except the robot itself now seemed to be getting dimmer and dimmer, like it was fading away from sight, becoming invisible and it was getting harder and harder to walk and that humming, he could feel it vibrating through every cell in his body.

Then, there was a blinding blue/white flash. Then complete silence, as Dredd passed out….

1/7.

 

Dredd was up well before 6 a.m. and had managed to sneak into the larders and steal some sacks of food and as the cits started appearing on the streets after the curfew, he emptied them out of the window of his room on to the streets below. Needless to say, this resulted in an absolute riot with the cits below.

Alarm bells went off in the halls as judges tried to quell the riots.

Grimm burst in to dredd’s room, shouting,

“COME ON DREDD, WE’RE NEEDED!”

But Dredd wasn’t in there.

But then Grimm spotted a chicken leg on the floor and realised what had happened!

“So, Dredd’s turned crim, has he? I’ll track him down and  bring him in myself!”, he said to himself!

Meanwhile, Dredd had made his way back to the courtyard. He still had two high-incendiary charges left in his lawgiver and he had a use for both of them. Aiming carefully, he  let one fly right into the heart of the wooden gallows and it wasn’t long before they were all ablaze.

He then made his way to where he had concealed his lawmaster and headed off towards the ReSyk/food plant, where he dispatched the other high-incendiary into the belly of the plant which resulted in a huge explosion.

“Now that’s thrown a spanner into the works for the sickos! I guess it’s the Rad Lands for me, now!”

And he is about to jump on his bike, when from out of the shadows jumped Grimm who had second-guessed him. Dredd went for his gun but Grimm knocked it out of his hands. Grimm went for his, but Dredd kicked it out of his. There then ensued a truly vicious fist fight, both men literally fighting for the lives, neither was going to give in, coughing and wheezing as the foul smoke from the burning plant got thicker and thicker, burning their lungs. It got so thick that the two of them couldn’t even see each other as they slugged it out in the blackness. Then a gentle breeze started to clear the air a bit and when they could see again, they were both on the floor rolling around, but on hearing a couple of clicks, looked up to see two lawgivers pointed down at them and when a voice said,

“Right, you two, break the party up!”

Dredd recognised it instantly as Hershey, there with her rookie, Danno.

“Dredd”, she said, when she saw him,

“WHERE have you been?”

“To Hell and back”  he replied,

“Who’s your friend?”, she asked.

“Sick creep ain’t no friend of mine!” he said,

“Book him, Danno! – Life on Titan!”

“You can’t do this to me”, protested Grimm,

“I'”m a judge. I have never broken any law!”

“IIIIIIII am the Law here!” Dredd said ,

“And I say you’ve  broken it!

Let Justice be served!

Amen!”