Title: Big News
Characters: Dee, Ryo, Chief Smith, Carol, Bikky, OCs.
Setting: Vol. 6, Act 17.
Summary: With a murderer targeting teenage girls, the press are out in force.
Word Count: 826
Written For: james’s prompt ‘any, any, "This is going to make the news",’ at fic_promptly.
Disclaimer: I don’t own FAKE, or the characters. They belong to the wonderful Sanami Matoh.
“Alright, listen up, you losers!” Chief Smith snapped at the assembled detectives of the 27th Precinct’s Serious Crimes Squad. “This one is going to make the news, we’ll have the press dogging our every move, and the last thing we need is anything getting out that might tip off the killer. There will be regular press briefings where we’ll give out what information the public needs in order to protect themselves. Other than that, you keep your mouths shut. No answering questions, no off-the-record comments, no private interviews. Understood?”
“Yes, Sir.” The response came from every man there. They might complain about the Chief to each other around the water cooler, but when a case like this came along, they pulled together. No one liked to think of a serial killer on their turf, least of all one that targeted young girls and cut off their right hands, presumably as some kind of sick trophy. This bastard needed to be caught, preferably before he claimed another victim.
The Old Badger was right though, there was a veritable swarm of reporters cluttering up the precinct’s foyer as the detectives headed out to resume their investigation of the grisly case. Pushing their way past microphones and cameras with a curt and uncompromising ‘No comment’ to every question being asked, Dee led the way through the crowds, only to be met with more reporters outside. It was a relief to finally make it to their car, although Dee was sorely tempted to run over a few of the more persistent journalists on the way out of the parking lot.
“They’re just trying to do their jobs, Dee,” Ryo tried to placate his partner.
“I know, but right now all they’re doing is making it that much harder for us to do ours.”
Ryo sighed and turned away to look out the side window. The hell of it was, Dee was right. When reporters started crawling all over crime scenes and following the police around, crucial evidence could get contaminated or destroyed, sometimes leading to those responsible for the crimes getting away. Well, whatever it took, that wasn’t going to happen this time. There had already been at least three victims that they knew of and it was entirely possible there were other bodies that just hadn’t been found yet. All of the NYPD’s resources right now were geared towards catching the killer before he had a chance to strike again.
For Dee and Ryo, the case took a turn for the personal when Carol disappeared, and their already strained patience with the press became nonexistent. Ryo was pretty sure they were gaining a reputation for being rude as they shoved their way through the ranks without so much as an ‘Excuse me,’ but for once he didn’t care. Carol was Bikky’s friend, and had become like a daughter to him since he’d taken the boy in. They had to find her before it was too late.
With that kind of incentive and no way of knowing how much time they had, there was no stopping them. Not a stone was left unturned or a lead left unfollowed as they worked without rest.
And it paid off; they saved Carol and got the bastard responsible for the deaths of no fewer than six girls.
If the press had been out in force while the killer was on the loose, when he was brought in, beaten to a pulp, it looked as if every reporter in the city was camped out in front of the 27th precinct, wanting a few words from the arresting officers, the heroes who had saved a young girl’s life. They didn’t get much.
“He resisted arrest,” Dee said, hard-eyed. “Not that it did him any good. We’ve got enough evidence to put him away for several lifetimes,” and he stalked past them into the building, Ryo on his heels
“Detective Maclean, you were the one who saved the girl, is that correct?” Another reporter shoved a microphone in Ryo’s face as he tried to reach the door.
“Not really, she saved herself. She was incredibly brave, got away from the killer and jumped out a third floor window. All I did was catch her.” He slipped through the door Dee was holding open, and uniformed officers prevented the press from following.
Despite their words, the papers and news programs made Detectives Laytner and Maclean out to be the heroes of the hour. The Chief had been right on the money; the case had been picked up by the national news, with every paper and TV station in the country running the story, and while in some ways it was good for the public to see that the police had done their job, successfully apprehending a monster who preyed on young teens, it was worrying too.
When such hideous crimes are the subject of widespread publicity, how many psychopaths might be reading the stories and getting ideas?