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Hunting Shadows


The clocks in the skies of New Babbage approached three, but no one could see them in the choked night sky of New Babbage.  No moonlight could penetrate the dark clouds of smog, nor could the streetlamps provide sufficient illumination as shadows flickered along the Babbage cobbles.  These shadows had grown fewer as the cutpurses favored prey, the drunks stumbling home, had already arrived to their final destination one way or another.

 In the alleys across from the municipal hall, behind the forbidding museums and factories, only one lonely mounted lamp provided relief from the darkness. It was located near the center of the alley, near a tunnel which lead to an enclosed area known as the Clockwork Close.  The Brass Monkey pub provided the only lamp within this borough.

The only two casting shadows in the lamplight were two figures wearing hooded cloaks plotting to one another quietly.  The small one, a red fox moreau, relayed the message excitedly and with an air of victory.  They were ready to retrieve their brother and sister.  She finished relaying the plans and then looked around carefully and darted towards the tunnel leading to Palisades.  The other one, a thin simple looking lad, made his way south and into the dark tunnel exit there.

He was about to make his way inside when he thought he could see someone in the tunnel waiting for him.  The cloaked figure reached for his belt with his hands, one to grab his pistol and the other to get a syringe, but a monstrous claw reached out and pulled him inside.   For a moment there were the brief sounds of a struggle, metal hitting the ground, and then nothing.

The fox had heard the noise and had made her way back carefully.  Few would have been able to see the small traces of blood and the other clues in the dark tunnel, but the red fox was one of them.  It let out a foxes howl of mourning, a sound that reverberated all the way to the monster’s ears as he carried his prize away.

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