2019-10-30 - Spider-Hunt 2C: UNDERSTAND YOUR PREY.


The Sole Survivor is debriefed.

Log Info:

Storyteller: None
Date: Wed Oct 30 00:00:00 2019
Location: One Police Plaza, NYC

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Captain George Stacy noticed it as soon as he arrived at One Police Plaza. The way everyone looked at him.

Stacy, the Sole Survivor. The only living policeman left after a superhuman madman had massacred the entire precinct. Forty-seven on-duty officers in the building. There had been other officers in the field, but they had been instructed to avoid the precinct, placed on involuntary paid time off, and were home with their families.

But Stacy had been in the building, had faced the man who had single-handedly murdered his friends, his colleagues. The surveillance footage revealed it all in stomach-churning detail, but there had been one thing it did not catch.

The single sentence the one calling himself Morlun had hissed to Stacy.


He did not react to the mob of reporters who had tried to get pictures and reactions out of him with stupid questions. (He felt the one who asked, “How did you feel when you saw the corpses of your friends?” should get blackballed by the NYPD for that question alone.) He did not react to the whispers and stares of people as he walked towards the elevators, flanked by four SWAT officers in full riot gear. And he did not engage in small talk as he rode up in the elevator to the top floor.

Which was fitting, since he was about to have an audience with the Commish himself. At 4 AM in the morning, no less.

The aide opened the door, and Stacy was surprised to see the Mayor there as well as NYPD Police Commissioner Jason Thorn. Thorn was a big man, black-haired with white at the temples, piercing blue eyes and a slightly uncultured look about him. But he had gotten where he was with the respect of his peers, and an uncompromising unwillingness to play politics. When bad cops went to bed at night and glimpsed the boogeyman, it looked like Thorn.

He waited until the aide closed the door, then said politely, “George.”

Stacy finally spoke. “Hello, Commissioner.”

“I think, in this context, I would not mind if you used my first name.” Thorn looked at him with sympathy. He had only been the commissioner for one year during 12/12, and he had weathered the storms that followed. He understood what it was like to lose good cops under your watch.

“I would prefer to keep it official, sir.”

Despite himself, Thorn smiled slightly. Stacy was one of the best cops in the NYPD. He had been brutally uncompromising when he drummed out seven officers during the OsCorp Bounty Scandal. For that, and many other command decisions he’d made, earned him the respect of those who served under him.
That killed the smile. That list had been reduced to ten men and women who had been out on patrol and late for the shift change.

“I would like to open by saying that I want to convey my deepest sympathy for you, Captain Stacy.”
The Mayor said immediately, “As does the city of New York. We haven’t seen anything like this since 12/12. One officer in the IT department posted the video clip of you facing down the one calling himself…” He looked at his tablet. “…MORLUN. It has since gone viral, although publicly we shall have to reprimand the officer for releasing it.”

“I will not reprimand any officer for revealing PROFOUND bravery in a police officer in the line of duty, Mr. Mayor. He gets a slap on the wrist. My final word on it.” He looked to Stacy. “Have a seat, Captain. Single-malt scotch whisky?”

Stacy did sit, but said, “I’m on duty, sir.”

“No…you are not.” Thorn walked over to a cabinet and unlocked it, taking out a bottle of Highland Park Valkyrie. “You are on medical leave as of right now, with full pay and benefits. And I prescribe a drink for medicinal purposes.”

Stacy stiffened, then relaxed. “I…thank you, sir.”

Only now, as Thorn pours his drink, does Stacy react to the deaths of his men and women. He does not break down crying, but his face crumples and he hides his face in his hands. The Mayor, showing admirable restraint, says nothing, making Thorn glad he voted for the guy.

When Stacy looked up again, he sees Thorn holding the drink out to him. He had to have waited at least five minutes there, but he had. Stacy took the drink. “Thank you, sir.” He took a strong gulp and winced.

“As you were, Stacy.” Thorn walked back behind the desk. “Now…” he said as he sat down, placing his own glass on the desk. “…what did Morlun say to you?”

Stacy coughed, then looked at Thorn. “He said, ‘I want Spider-Man.’ That’s all, sir. Then he just…left.”

The Mayor groaned. “SPIDER-MAN. Just…great.” He looked to Thorn. “Even if we could find this guy, do you think this will stop if we hand him over?”

Thorn was no longer glad he voted for the guy.

Stacy spoke up, “You can’t be SERIOUS!” He looked to Thorn. “SIR…do you have any idea…”

“Yes, Captain…I do.” He opened his desk drawer and took out a police file. It was thick with papers and the name along the folder’s edge said simply SPIDER-MAN. He opened the file. “I have had numerous reports from various officers. This file is only the highlights…we have an entire box devoted to the guy, it seems.” He begins turning papers. “First sighting when he captured Carradine, the thief-turned-murderer. Two years ago. Since then, he has been seen all over the city. Age unknown, but we’re thinking college-age when he started. His activities have grown increasingly sophisticated as time goes on, so we’re thinking he has a network of support. His personality is…” He paused. “…surprising. He has been referred to as having a ‘Circle-K’ mouth, because it never closes. Talks constantly. Outgoing personality.”

He continues turning pages. “Despite having a…carefree attitude, all reports suggest a highly-principled nature. He has never put civilians or officers in danger, even to the point of protecting officers who sought to detain him. He has had someone perfect non-lethal methods for him, that’s for sure. Apart from the occasional serious beating…and almost all of those instances had required excessive force, please note…he has never killed anyone. Even various criminal factions around the city seem to take a liberal stance when it comes to him. I have one report here about the 54th Street Stompers finding him after he got on the wrong end of the one calling himself the Rhino and their leader, Santos, ordering them not to lay a hand on him. Apparently, Spider-Man rescued his girlfriend from the Wing Kong triad two months previous.” Thorn sighed. “If I knew who this guy was, I’d tell him to become a cop.”

“And I’d want him in my precinct,” Stacy said immediately. He seemed bolstered by the words. “We hate cleaning up those annoying webs, but he seems to understand forensics. Most of the ones he catches leaves enough evidence to indict and convict.” He looks to the Mayor. “You talk about giving him up to this nut, I think you’d have incidents of ‘Blue Flu’ in all five boroughs.”

“So…” Thorn interjects, “…there will be no talk about giving up Spider-Man to this…Morlun. Stacy, you are not to tell a soul about what he said. Not to your friends, or your colleagues, or even your DAUGHTER.” He closed the file. “We do not accede to the desires of terrorists, even superhuman ones. I have contacted SHIELD to see what help they can provide. Stacy, have you classified Morlun as a six-oh-six?”

Stacy nodded. “606” was the police radio-code designation for a superhuman. “Yes. And we have a BOLO out on the Hummer-3. Thank God that vehicle can be seen a mile away. The instructions are to report on his location, to evac anyone around him. Wanted and EXTREMELY Dangerous. Do Not Approach. We’ve found that he seems to have an agenda for these deaths. Other than that, stay out of his way and you won’t get killed.” He paused. “Although I’ll be damned if I know why he picked my precinct. Or why he spared me.” He looked to Thorn. “He looked at me like I was nothing to him, not even an annoyance.”

Thorn looked troubled. “And the other one, the driver. Dexter Thompson.”

Stacy sighed. “Small-time thug, two-time loser. The gofer for the Wiley Gang Morlun slaughtered at the start of all this. Morlun’s keeping him alive for SOME reason. Maybe because Dexter’s a low-level fixer. Knows stuff, a little about everything. A fair amount of animal cunning.”

“Morlun seems to be an out-of-towner. A monster like this, he would have showed up before. Maybe he’s new in town, needs a local guide.” Thorn looked thoughtful. “This single-mindedness…this focus on Spider-Man. The use of local talent. Stacy, do you have any thoughts?”

Stacy thought hard. “Two concepts. One, he’s some kind of hitman. Spider-Man might have made someone mad enough to put out a hit on him. It certainly makes sense.”

Thorn nodded. “I’ll call Interpol, see if they have anything on this Morlun.” He paused, looked to Stacy, who sat uncomfortably in the overstuffed chair. “You said you had two concepts.”

“Yeah…but the second one is more of a feeling. A sense of the man, up close. It’s only a theory.”

Thorn waited patiently.

Stacy took a deep breath. “Sir…concept two is that he’s on safari.”

The Mayor looked incredulously at Captain Stacy. “You’re saying that this is a goddamn HUNT? That’s as crazy as a soup sandwich! Do you think…”

“BILL.” It was the first time Thorn had called the Mayor by his first name. The Mayor quieted quickly. Thorn looked at Stacy. “I want to hear your thoughts.”

“The carnage at the docks. That was done when Spider-Man was known to be in the area. I get the feeling he was trying to flush his prey out into the open. And sure enough, he showed up. The use of Dex. Hiring a local guide is textbook safari hunting. Even the attack at the precinct. He may know Spider-Man respects the NYPD. So that’s what he attacked, to knock Spider-Man off-balance. But I think…what clinched it was when he was in my office. He showed no reaction to killing my people. They were in the way, they were a means to an end. But when he said the name ‘Spider-Man’…” He gave a little uncharacteristic shiver. “It was like he came alive for the first time. He looked EXCITED. Hell, he looked HUNGRY. It was the first emotion I’d seen in the guy. I went hunting elk in Canada with a family friend three years ago. We’d gotten a license for bear as well, just in case. When Larry talked about bagging a bear…he had that exact same look.”

Thorn frowned. “Safari.” He looked at the two men. “Don’t talk to anyone about your thoughts, Captain. You too, Bill. The last thing we want to do is reveal to the city that this Morlun is after just him. Hitman or hunter, it would polarize the city. We’d be back to the OsCorp Bounty days, and I’m sure both of you remember how THAT turned out. All we can do is keep people out of his way until someone, Spider-Man, Avengers, SHIELD, ANYONE figures out how to stop this guy. He seems impossible to kill.”

“Give me a room alone with the guy and a jackhammer and I’d LOVE to test that,” Stacy said, then drained his glass. “I should head home, anyway. I need to see if Gwen is home. She’s seen the news by now and she’ll be worried sick. I don’t know why she hasn’t called already.”

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