Section: 0.01 Pilot (part 1) Up Section: 0.01 Pilot (part 1) Subsection: Friday 6 September 2019 

Thursday 5 September 2019

Juan has heard rumours of a Florida panther on the loose. They hardly ever range this far north, though there is a rescue and rehabilitation operation nearby at White Oak. He has a look around the area where the sightings have been reported, in the industrial estates north of Blount Island, but doesn’t immediately find anything. He rests up until sunset, with a plan.
Ruth is escorting a client through the international airport when she spots a couple of large clawed-foot marks, and one slash on the side of a metal building some eight feet above ground level. When she comes back later, she takes photos and measurements. The other tracks seem too close together to be consistent with an eight-foot reach. She goes looking for plausible sightings, and looks around Victoria Lakes (near the airport, fairly upmarket), where there’s some vegetation damage.
Jesus is invited by some community leaders in the New Town and LaVilla areas (historically, and still somewhat, African-American) to help look into their big cat problem. He sets up cameras and talks to witnesses; there’s definitely something attacking people, though it’s going for sleeping victims and while it’s caused injuries it hasn’t killed anyone yet.
Natasha hears that kids across the city are scared of the “ghost panther” – but particularly in two areas, New Town and Victoria Lakes. She goes to New Town – and runs into Jesus, then settles down to some spellcasting to try to locate a big cat. Nothing within ten miles… She goes to Victoria Lakes, and this time does get a hit, to the east in the Timucuan Preserve, an area of coastal wetlands with some preserved historically significant buildings.
Juan finds some plausible big cat tracks, and after dark cuts himself to leave a blood trail. Soon enough something is stalking him, and while he’s significantly mauled he shoots the creature dead, then cuts its throat to be sure. It does appear to be an albino panther.
Natasha was nearby, and follows the gunshots. She can’t detect any magic on the body. The pair load up the corpse into Juan’s borrowed car, then go downtown to meet Jesus. On the way they reckon someone’s following their cars; they pull to the side of the road to see what’ll happen, and an old pickup truck with camper shell goes past, two people in the cab. They get the (Florida) licence plate.
Meanwhile, Ruth has been looking at the New Town scenes, showing up on Jesus’ cameras as she does so. She confirms more clawed tracks, but is also confident that on at least one occasion the cat was released from a vehicle, crossed a park to attack someone, and returned to that vehicle (and she’s got a tyre track to try to match).
 Section: 0.01 Pilot (part 1) Up Section: 0.01 Pilot (part 1) Subsection: Friday 6 September 2019