Characters: Ryo, Dee, OCs.
Setting: After the manga.
Summary: Ryo waits to fulfil his role in a hostage situation.
Word Count: 584
Written For: My own prompt FAKE, Dee/Ryo, Target,’ at fic_promptly.
Disclaimer: I don’t own FAKE, or the characters. They belong to the wonderful Sanami Matoh.
Ryo has his eye to his rifle’s scope, drawing a bead on his target. “I have a clear shot,” he says quietly, knowing Dee will hear him through his mike.
Down at street level, Dee replies, his voice quiet but tense in Ryo’s ear. “Hold off until I give you the go.”
A lot of being a police sniper is playing a waiting game. In hostage situations like this one, it’s generally best if the criminals can be talked into giving themselves up without having to resort to potentially lethal force, because of the risk to bystanders. But if that doesn’t work, then it’s the sniper’s job to end the standoff, by wounding if possible. No one, not even an experienced sniper such as Ryo, likes having to take the kill shot; that’s usually kept as a last resort.
In the bank, the lone would-be bank robber has his gun to the head of the bank’s lone customer, a terrified middle-aged man who had the bad luck to walk in off the street during the attempted robbery. Shooting to wound won’t be possible this time, because the hostage is being used as a human shield. If Ryo has to fire, it’ll be a headshot, and that’s not something anyone’s likely to survive, not when the weapon being used to make the shot is a high-powered rifle. It’s far from being an ideal situation, but the armed man is desperate, making demands that he must know will never be agreed to.
Ryo can hear the voice of the police negotiator, faint with distance despite his bullhorn, drifting up from the street, telling the gunman to let his hostage go and give himself up. Ryo can already tell that’s not going to happen, but he can’t make a move until he’s told to; it’s not his call to make, not this time. Even as that thought crosses his mind, Dee’s voice is there in his ear.
“You have a go.”
There’s no hesitation, it’s like a switch being thrown, flipping him from semi-passive observer to active participant. The only part of Ryo that moves is the tip of his right index finger, gently squeezing the trigger. There’s a sharp crack as the bullet is fired, splintering the bank’s window before blowing a hole in the perp’s head. Ryo’s shoulder absorbs the rifle’s recoil; he’s prepared for it, but it’s still quite a jolt. Through his scope, he can see the blood-spattered hostage standing there screaming. He’s fine, unharmed; the blood isn’t his, but he’ll probably need to be treated for shock. Who wouldn’t be in shock after that? Lowering his rifle, Ryo draws a deep, slow breath. He’s just taken a life to save one; it’s something he’ll have to live with, just like each time before, but it was a good shooting.
“You okay, bud?” Dee’s voice asks quietly in his ear.
“Yeah, I’m fine. Be down in a minute, just got to pack up my rifle.”
“You did what you had to.”
“I know. Just wish things had gone the other way.”
“He was never gonna give up; he already killed the bank guard, probably figured he had nothing left to lose.”
It’s small consolation, but Ryo won’t dwell on that. He had a job to do and he carried it out to the best of his ability. Time to put it behind him and move on. Picking up his rifle case, he makes his way down the stairs to join his partner.