Title: The Beautiful Ones (1/?)

Author:  Maven Cree

Rating:  R (as a precaution)

Summary:  There's a new killer in the 'Haven.  Officer Grayson's going undercover.

Author's Note: Okay.  This was started a while ago and posted on my now defunct site, but my friends and I rented The Full Monty Friday night so I decided to come back to it.  This story takes place before Amy found out who Nightwing was, and therefore before he was fired and he was never shot on duty.  Amy is the Captain, however and Nightwing did save her family.   Tarantula… well, since she won't be making an appearance here, lets all pretend that she fell into a nice vat of hot boiling lava, shall we?  If you did happen to read this on my site, it has changed slightly.  Enjoy!

Disclaimer:  Any characters previously mentioned in a DC comic, I do not own.  DC does.  I'm not making money off of this. 

Warnings:  Language and implied violence in this chapter.  Heavier stuff to follow.

©April 2001/2004

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THE BEAUTIFUL ONES

by Maven Cree

Chapter One

He struggled, the binding ropes cutting into his already raw flesh.

She looked up at him for a moment and smiled, before turning her attention back to her tray.  She drew her slender hand across her assortment of toys and shook her head.

"Tsk… Which to choose?  Which to choose?" She mussed.  "Ah!  You'll do quite nicely…"

She picked the 'toy' up and lovingly ran her finger across the serrated edge drawing a small amount of blood.  She turned to face him, while seductively sucking on her wounded digit.

"Play time," she whispered and slithered her way over to the bed.

The man's eyes grew large at the sight of the blade in her hand.  His struggles with the ropes became frantic.

"Please…!" He yelped in a horse voice.

She straddled his chest and leaned forward, placing the wounded finger across his trembling lips.

"Uh-uh-uh… You didn't say 'Pretty'."

His screams could be heard three blocks away.

But this was Bludhaven…

VVVVVVVVVV 

"Roxie's victim list has just gone up to five," Captain Amy Rohrbach said writing the new name on the board. 

"Sam 'the Ram' Doyle was found just inside the gates of Timbermill Park.  We're still waiting for the M.E.'s report, but on the surface, this reeks of the Roxie Horror killer.  Five victims.  Five different clubs," she paused, looking around at the small number of officers gathered before her.

"We're taking a lot of heat for this.  If the killer sticks to his or her pattern, another stripper will go missing five days from now and we'll have a sixth body to deal with.  That CANNOT happen."

The victim, a male exotic dancer was found nude and mutilated in a public place, just like the others.  No identifying evidence of the killer or killers either on or around the body.

The Captain picked up the folders off of his desk and distributed them to those gathered.

"There are only two other clubs in town that feature male dancers, so unless our perp decides to double back or move on, it's gotta be one of them.  That being said, I'm sending in two teams.  We're going undercover."

"Uh, excuse me, Captain," Sgt. Tom Gavin asked, waving his pen in the air.  "Did I here you right?  We're going undercover in a strip club?  A male strip club?"

"No.  In two male strip clubs.  Try and keep up Gavin."

"As what, ma'am?"

"Two teams of four.  Two female officers in the audience.  One bouncer… and, as our killer is after the performers…"

"Waitaminute, Captain!  You can't mean…"

"Don't worry about it Taylor.  With a mug like yours, no one would buy you as a stripper anyhow."

Sgt. Taylor ruefully crossed his arms as the other officers present began laughing.  All except one.  Officer Richard Grayson covered his face with his hand and shook his head.  While he did find the Captain's comment funny, he didn't like where he thought this conversation was heading.

"Okay, people.  Adler, Smith, Taylor and Darcy, you're team one and you'll be at… ahem… "Kinks" down on Mallory Street.  Adler and Smith of will be in the audience, of course."

"And I've got the door."  Taylor added.

"Right."

"Wait!  Wait!  Don't I get a say in this?!" Darcy piped up.

"No."  Amy replied.

"Gavin, Miller, and Grayson and myself, we'll be at "The Vat" on Kelly Street.  We're short on female officers who are available at the moment, so I'm filling in.  Gavin's got the door."

"Oh, god…" Dick grimly muttered.

"Grayson, think you're up to this?"

"How come he gets a choice?!"

"It's his first undercover assignment.  You've been here six years Darcy."

Dick looked out from between his fingers.  Amy was watching him expectantly.

"Well…?"

VVVVVVVVVV

"Why did I say yes?  Why?  Why?  Why?"  Dick was banging his head on his former partner's desk.  He had remained in his seat after the other officers had left.  The Captain sat down across from him, an amused grin on her face.

"Come on Rookie… it won't be that bad."

"Why'd you have to choose me, anyway?" he whined, sounding a little too much like a petulant five year old.

"Well, I've been especially impressed with your performance lately," she replied. "I'll admit you've surpassed my expectations…"

"And this is my reward?" he croaked, incredulously.

Amy continued, as though she hadn't heard him.  "Then there's the matter of… well, let's face it Grayson.  You've had female officers… and Det. Higgins… walking into desks and garbage cans since you first set foot through that door.  When you walk by there's more rubber necking going on than a fifteen car pile-up at rush-hour!"

Dick opened his mouth to say something but only managed to produce a fierce blush.  He turned his head away.  Amy laughed and he dropped his head onto the desk again.

"It won't be that bad."

"What's Jim gonna say about all of this?" he asked, hopefully finding a new angle.

"My husband fully understands that in our line of work, sometimes we gotta get down and dirty.  If that means I have to watch a bunch of hot oily men... and you... dance around on a stage wearing nothing but your pride, then thems the breaks.  It's a dirty job, but—"

"If you have any shred of sympathy for my situation, you won't finish that sentence, Amy."

The Captain snorted in lieu of a laugh.  "Come on Grayson. We've gotta go meet your new boss."

"Is it too late to get out of this?" He asked, standing up.

"Yup!"

VVVVVVVVVV

"I just want to have it on record that I'm against this.  The Vat has a reputation for excellence.  We have only the best."

"Jacob, these officers are here to protect our performers.  We should be grateful," Marie said.

"Right.  Protect.  Have you even heard of the Bludhaven PD?"

"Mr. Manicky, I assure you, we have no intention to be be-smudging the name of your club.  We are taking these murders very seriously," Lieutenant Miller assured one of The Vat's owners.

"Well, I still have final say over the officer they want us to use.  If he's not good enough, he's out."

"Jacob!"

"Marie, we agreed."

Marie rolled her eyes at her cousin's stubbornness.  True, their club did attract a higher-class crowd than many of the others in the city, but the way Jacob rambled on, you'd think they were working in Vegas.

"Officers, do you have someone in mind already?"

Amy nodded.  She thumbed over her shoulder.  "Officer Richard Grayson.  He—Grayson?"  The three officers present turned around looking for their missing comrade.

"Here." They heard a weary voice sigh from just outside the doorway.  A moment later he emerged and both Jacob and Marie raised their eyebrows.

Jacob looked from Rohrbach to Grayson then back to Rohrbach.  "He's a cop?" He said as though Dick weren't even there.

Dick rolled his eyes and produced a badge from the back pocket of his jeans.  The officers had changed into civilian clothes before going to the club.  Although it was the middle of the day, the Roxie Killer may very well stake out the clubs days in advance of striking.

"Well… um… Officer Grayson.  Let's see your stuff," Marie said.  In her business she was privy to some of the best looking men in the city.  But few even came close to this man's level.

"What?!"

"Just your shirt.  Take it off."

Dick sighed and ignored Gavin's poor attempt to suppress his laughter.  He removed his t-shirt and held his arms out.

"Happy?" he asked.

Very, Marie thought.  She nodded and got off of her stool.  She walked up to Dick and walked around him, drinking up every inch of his tightly muscled chest, arms and back. My, my, my, my… she thought.  Oh my…?!  "What's that?" she asked pointing to a small scar on his right shoulder.

"A bullet hole," he said dryly.  His fellow officers looked at him with wide-eyed surprise.  Damn. He shrugged at them sheepishly.  "I was a kid.  Long story."  He knew he'd have to think of one now.  He couldn't very well tell them that he had fighting the Joker along side Batman when he'd gotten that wound.

His attention went back to Marie, who was still doing the wolf circling the meat thing.  He didn't like being looked at like that.  But he was a cop.  This was his assignment.  And he was one hell of an actor.  Hell, he was born into performing!  Time to turn it around Grayson.  Get into character, he thought.

"You have quite a few little scars all over?" Marie continued, coming around to face him again.

Dick took a step forward closing off almost all the space between them.

"I like to play rough," he said lowering his voice and giving her a more sultry version of what Barbara had termed his 'lady-killer' smile.

Marie's bright blush painted her neck, face and travelled the length of her arms.  She took a clumsy step back.

"Y-Yes—W-Well, I—We have some concealer that should work on those—that—those.  Um, Jacob?  Acceptable?"

"Oh, most certainly, yes," he replied.  Most acceptable, he thought.

Dick nodded and replaced his shirt.

"Be here tomorrow at 11am.  We can't very well send you out on stage by yourself, so you'll be part of a group routine," Marie said, finally able to compose herself.  "They'll be starting a new one in two days.  Think you can keep up?"

"I'm a quick study."

"I'll bet," she said and then blushed again.  God, did I say that out loud?  "Um, Officer Griffin…"

"Gavin."

"Whatever… You'll need to talk to Henry.  He should be in the bar right now.  Big guy.  Bald.  Can't miss him."

Gavin gave a mock two-fingered salute and left the room.

"Ladies, I guess we'll see you at show time.  And you…" she said poking Dick in the chest.  "We shall see tomorrow."

"With bells on," he said smiling, but he was screaming.  What the hell had he gotten himself into?

"Speaking of Uniform…" Jacob chimed in and Dick hoped to god that he was joking.

He walked over to a wide filing cabinet and pulled out a red 8x10 envelope.  "This will be you're… final uniform.  You might want to get use to the feel… that is, if you aren't already," he said, handing it to the young man.

"My final…?"

"We have to leave something to the imagination."

"But not much!" Dick exclaimed looking wide-eyed into the package.  He snapped it shut as out of the corner of his eye, he saw Amy moving in for a peek.

"I think you're enjoying this assignment a little too much, Cap," Dick said.

His Captain gave him a snort and a wicked grin.

VVVVVVVVVV

TBC.