There weren't many holding cells at ZPD Headquarters, but one basement corridor had a short stretch. They were small and utilitarian, containing little more than a bed. Scar's was still messy. Peridot had carefully made hers without being told.
She was pacing a nervous circle around her cell, muttering to herself. Across the hallway, Scar sat calmly on his bed, eyes closed, poised.
Peridot glanced up. When she saw Scar's posture, she almost tripped. "What?! Why are you so calm?! You should be panicking! Why aren't you panicking?!"
Scar simply smiled.
"Do you know something I don't? Maybe I was wrong to doubt you..." Peridot paused, thinking. "What could you possibly be keeping as your secret trump card? Hmm... Oh! Maybe Tai Lung will break in and rescue us." She frowned. "Wait, no. He must know we're the ones who poisoned him." She bristled, clapping her paws to her face. "Maybe Tai Lung will break in and kill us!"
Scar chuckled. "No, no. Nothing of the sort." He grimaced uncertainly. "I hope."
"Oh... Then what is it?"
"Let me tell you a little secret, Dorothy," said Scar, opening his eyes. "The world is full of strife and difference. Conflicts. Prey versus predator, order versus chaos, 'good versus evil'. None of it really matters in the end. There is but one thing in this world that has true value."
"Um," said Peridot, "friendship?"
"Good lord, no," said Scar. "Money. Money for bail. Money for a strong legal team. Money to throw at whatever slap on the wrist I'm sentenced to." His smile didn't waver, but he clenched a fist. "Money to go into a nice little fund for making the lives of Wilde, Hopps and Cooper an absolute living hell. Point being: as long as you have money... life goes on."
At the end of the corridor, the door swung open. Bogo strode through, carrying a clipboard. "Good morning, you two. Hope you had a restful night."
Scar stood, his smirk melting into a sour frown. "I knew you'd make an appearance to gloat. Hear me, Bogo – if you or one of your cronies so much as lays a finger on me, I swear I'll–!"
"Settle down," said Bogo calmly. "You'll be treated with the utmost care and respect, I assure you. I'm just here to give you some news."
"Oh goodie." Scar folded his arms. "And what would that be?"
Bogo stood in front of Scar's cell – behind him, Peridot pressed her face against the bars, curious. Bogo glanced at his clipboard before looking Scar in the eye. "Last night, someone broke into your house."
"What?!" Scar's surprise only lasted a moment before giving way to fury. "I – Cooper! It was Cooper, wasn't it?! What did he take?!"
"A substantial amount of your possessions, as far as we can tell," said Bogo. "And yes, it was Cooper. We found one of his little cards on the scene. Several, actually." He took out his reading glasses. "That said..."
"Not all of your property was stolen..."
"Man, these pictures are ugly," said Murray, frowning uncertainly at a portrait he had unhooked from the wall. "Do we have to take them?"
"Well, no," said Sly, walking down the corridor with two bags of loot over his shoulders. "The important thing is just that Scar doesn't have them."
"Huh," said Murray. "I think I get what you're saying."
Then he punched through the portrait, tossed it aside, and moved on to the next one.
"Those filthy degenerates!" snapped Scar. "How dare they desecrate my home! I'll see justice is done – they'll hang for this!" He turned to Bogo. "What's the status of my bail? I need to get out of here immediately."
"Well, that's a shame," said Bogo, putting on his glasses. "Unless someone you know is feeling very charitable, you're not going anywhere for the foreseeable future."
"What?! But my electronic funds–"
"Were also hit."
Bentley generally made a rule against cracking into bank systems to steal money. It just wasn't as satisfying as a physical heist. Something about it was unsportsmanlike; it was too easy, too blunt. But Scar would be given no chance to recover.
Besides, rules were meant to be broken.
He smiled at his laptop's screen as all the numbers ticked down to zero. "That's the last of Scar's assets," he said smugly. "Now there's only the question of where to put it all. I'm open to suggestions."
Sly threw his bags of loot into the back of the van. "Anywhere?"
"Anywhere. I can set up programs to donate small amounts over time, so we can give it to anyone we'd like. No suspicion."
Sly shifted his weight. "How's the museum doing?"
"Between some hefty insurance payments, and squeezing money out of what's left of O'Donnell's security firm, they'll be just fine."
"Give them some anyway. We broke a lot of stuff. And, hey, put some in Toriel's campaign funds."
"Excellent idea. She won't forget how you saved her son – and I think it could be very useful for the mayor of Zootopia to owe us a favour."
"Well, there's that. But have you heard her reform policies for the orphanage system? Good stuff."
"Agreed. Anything else?"
Sly smirked. "Yeah. Give the rest to the ZPD."
Bentley raised an eyebrow. "Seriously? You do realize that could make things much harder if we end up pulling another job here, right?"
"Oh, I'm counting on it."
Scar stared. "It... it can't all be gone."
Bogo consulted his clipboard. "Looks like it is, I'm afraid."
Scar gripped the cell bars very tightly and took a deep breath. "Real estate," he said finally. "The house is worth a substantial sum. As much as it pains me to part with it, I could... Oh, what now?!" Scar glared at Bogo, who was clearly waiting to speak. "Don't stand there and act you aren't aren't enjoying every second of this!"
"I don't know where you're getting that impression," said Bogo very evenly.
Bogo was, indeed, enjoying every second of this. But he was a professional, and had been for decades. He knew how to keep a straight face.
"I can tell you've got some ridiculous tragedy to spring on me!" snapped Scar. "So what is it? Did they burn down my home? Vandalise it? Open it to the homeless?!"
"No," said Bogo. "They fired a subway train at it."
The train sped along the elevated tracks at dangerous speeds, helped by the fact it was completely empty. A small metallic device was wired into the controls, remotely steering it.
It barrelled toward a corner and didn't slow and with a terrible snapping noise it burst through the rails. It soared from the tracks, immediately losing altitude, but its trajectory had been precisely calculated and it hit its mark.
The train smashed through one side of Scar's house and kept going until it hit the opposite wall. Windows exploded, ceilings collapsed. In a matter of seconds, the stately manor became a pile of broken masonry and gently settling dust.
The Cooper Gang watched with satisfaction from a nearby rooftop.
"Alright!" shouted Murray. "That was a totally awesome act of architectural abuse!"
"Absolutely," said Sly. "Just like the Contessa jailbreak. You're still great at firing trains at buildings, Bentley."
"It's not exactly a skill you forget. Told you we'd find a use for it."
"I was wrong to ever doubt you."
There was silence for a moment. Peridot peered through the bars, blinking.
"...It's insured." Scar's voice was almost inaudible. "It's all insured. Everything."
Bogo tapped the clipboard. "...Ah. About that. You haven't had a chance to check your e-mail."
Scar didn't want to know.
He really didn't.
But he had to ask.
Bogo produced a printout. "This came from your insurance company. Seems they noticed a problem with your account early this morning. Something about your first name being incorrect...?"
Scar's eye twitched.
"Anyway," said Bogo, "your coverage was suspended approximately twenty-seven minutes before the break-in."
Scar's other eye starting twitching too.
He sat on the bed and stared at the wall.
"Are you alright, Mr Kifalme?" said Bogo.
"Mnah," said Scar.
"Don't worry, Scar!" called Peridot. "Tai Lung might still break in and kill you!"
"That's not too likely," said Bogo. "He woke up a few hours ago. He's been surprisingly cooperative – he's looking forward to having this matter fully resolved in court." Bogo removed his glasses and slipped them into his shirt pocket. "Of course, if he did pose a danger to you, you would have the full protection of the ZPD. Your safety is a priority. After all, we're looking forward to the court hearing as well."
Scar said nothing. He simply sat and stared.
Bogo cleared his throat. "...Alright, then. We'll give you some time, but someone will be along to question you in shortly. That goes for you as well, Miss Perrault."
"Yes, sir! Understood, sir!" chirped Peridot.
"Good." Bogo went to leave, but stopped. He turned back to Scar. "Oh, and, Mr Kifalme?"
Scar's eyes moved up, but he didn't seem to really be looking at him. "Mrrh?"
"Don't worry about the break-in." Bogo gave him a slight smile. "We have our finest officers on the case."
Sly took one last look through the auto-shop before closing the front door. It had served them well – it was a good hideout.
But this city was so huge, and so beautiful. They'd stay somewhere else next time.
The van was in the driveway, ready for their departure. Murray was hefting Bentley, wheelchair and all, into the back. It was no effort, especially considering he had been doing it for years.
Bentley noticed Sly. "Well? All set?"
"I think so, yeah."
Murray set down Bentley, then headed for the driver's seat. "You remember to leave the extra cash?" he asked.
Sly smirked. "Oh yeah. The owner will have no problem buying a new kitchen table. He can buy himself a kitchen-table factory if he wants."
"Great," said Bentley flatly. "Then let's hurry up and leave, shall we? I'd like to get clear before –"
"Stop right there, Cooper!"
"I don't know why I bother," sighed Bentley to himself.
Sly whirled around. He was beaming before he even saw her.
Standing on the auto-shop's roof, shock pistol in hand, was Carmelita. She glared down at him. "So this is where you've been hiding. Shame I didn't find it sooner."
"Agreed," smirked Sly. He was back on familiar ground. "You know you're always welcome to swing by for a chat, maybe a cup of coffee. But I'm afraid we were just leaving."
"Oh no you aren't!" She readied her pistol. "I'm not letting you slip away – not without a fight!"
Sly's smirk faded, becoming a more genuine smile. "I expect nothing less."
"Well then. You better get moving... Ringtail."
She returned his smile, and gave him the barest hint of a wink.
Then she opened fire.
Sly dodged a shot by leaping for the van. In one smooth motion he slid through the window and into the seat next to Murray. "Punch it!"
Murray slammed the accelerator and the van shot out of the driveway, tires crunching in the snow. But they didn't get far. He hit the brakes to avoid crashing into a police cruiser which pulled suddenly into their path.
Sly's eyes widened – and he grinned. He gave Judy a friendly salute through the windscreen. She kept a tight grip on the steering wheel, but flashed him a smile. Next to her, in the passenger seat, Nick adjusted his sunglasses. He lounged comfortably, lazily rotating the popsicle in his mouth.
His carefully maintained boredom was disrupted by a loud bang from their car's roof. With an impressive flip, Carmelita had leapt onto the cruiser. She crouched low, pistol ready, her eyes alive with fire.
Judy and Nick both looked up. "Well, that's not within ZPD regulations..." murmured Nick.
"Well, it is for Interpol!" said Carmelita with a vicious grin. "So hit it!"
"Yes, ma'am!" said Judy enthusiastically.
Murray was prepared. He put the van into reverse and pulled into a sweeping turn, using the ice on the roads to his advantage, sliding backwards into the driveway and then exploding forward to turn from the cruiser and speed away in the other direction. The cruiser was hot on their tail. Carmelita kept one hand on the roof to steady herself against the high wind and twisting path of the car. With the other, she raised her pistol and opened fire.
The van juddered as a blast impacted against the black doors. "Slyyyyy," called Bentley, his voice wobbling from motion and stress, "get on the roof and try to draw her fire!"
"You got it!" Sly reached through the window and pulled himself up, flipping over to land feet-first. He sauntered across the roof, completely at ease. "Could you take it down a notch?" he called to Carmelita. "Bolts of electricity can really mess up the paint job!"
Carmelita growled – then her eyes widened. "Down!"
Without turning, Sly ducked low to the roof. The van sped under a set of hanging traffic lights. The thick metal pole passed over Sly's head, just brushing the tips of his ears.
"Sorry sorry sorry sorry!" called Murray. "I'll warn you before the next one!"
"No worries, pal." Sly waved to Carmelita. "Uh, thanks!"
She smirked. "Oh, please, Ringtail. When I get my hands on you – and I will – I want you in one piece!"
He sighed, laying a hand on his heart. "You always did know just what to say..."
In the cruiser, Nick rolled his eyes. "These two..." He glanced around, checking the road signs. "Hey, try to push them south," he said to Judy. "The roads by Bering Plaza are an absolute nightmare. It's a maze down there."
"Copy that!" She twisted into a sharp turn. "Think we can corner them?"
"Eh. Probably not." He paused to lick the popsicle. "It'd be fun to watch them get lost, though."
"Heh! Yeah." She stole a glance at him. "Hey... let me know if I'm going too fast, okay?"
Nick scoffed gently. "Don't worry about me, Carrots. I'm having a great time."
"Me too, partner." Judy sighed contently as the cruiser lurched over a speed bump. "Me too..."
The chase continued. Sly dodged blasts and felt the cold wind whipping around him; Carmelita kept firing, never letting him out of her sight. Murray sped and swerved and weaved, making sure the van stayed ahead; Judy matched him at every turn, never giving up. Bentley consulted his maps and adapted their route on the fly; Nick sat comfortably and ate his popsicle and told Judy exactly where to go.
All in all, it was a fun afternoon.
For a city like Zootopia, even master thieves came and went. In the weeks after the diamond heist, life continued.
The mayoral election wore on, although there was a steady decrease in the number of candidates, for a multitude of reasons; old age, political fatigue, and – in more than one case, actually – criminal arrest. After a long and winding campaign, the election was won in a landslide. The papers all ran the same photograph of Toriel posing happily with her family. She pledged to implement her reforms as quickly as possible. Much to her own embarrassment, Gazelle still ended up in fourth place overall.
The court cases of Scar's gang proceeded reasonably well, despite becoming something of a media circus. Scar represented himself, fighting the charges tooth and claw, but it did him no good. Peridot's extensive records were all the evidence the jury needed. Despite having relatively little to add, Tai Lung also insisted on testifying against Scar, spitefully determined to make him suffer as he himself had. Mufasa took time out from work to attend as much of Scar's trial as possible. He sat in the front row of the public gallery, watching his brother with tired eyes.
Ultimately, all members of what the tabloids referred to as the 'Scar Six' were given jail sentences. However, they all found different things waiting for them behind bars.
Tai Lung returned to prison apathetically – there was no real difference in his eyes between a physical jail and the more abstract prisons of the outside world. He soon found a new way to amuse himself, however – gleefully ruining other prisoners' escape attempts. He also took up pottery.
Peridot's plea bargain substantially reduced her sentence, but she was far too complicit to walk away free. She was put into a cell with another lynx – a young vandal calling herself 'Amethyst'. Despite their differences, they soon warmed up to each other. Peridot taught Amethyst how to live efficiently and effectively in a prison environment. Amethyst taught Peridot, in turn, how to be less of a clod.
Scar tried to remain optimistic about prison life, and that optimism was apparently rewarded when the first people he met in the yard were Shenzi, Banzai and Ed. He had greeted them warmly as friends, but Shenzi said friends didn't poison each other, and asked what Banzai thought, and Banzai said he certainly didn't consider Scar a 'friend' any more, and asked what Ed thought, and Ed laughed. And laughed. And laughed.
The guards broke up the ensuing brawl. Eventually.
Wolf O'Donnell disappeared into the night, leaving Okonkwo with a considerable security shortage. His call for new guards was met with many applications, and one in particular caught his eye. The applicant's criminal record, he felt, was more than made up for by the letters of recommendation from two esteemed officers of the ZPD.
Finnick took well to his new job as security guard. What he lacked in size he more than made up for in presence. During Finnick's shifts, visitors knew better than to touch the exhibits.
The new security was proven mercifully unnecessary. Word spread quickly throughout the criminal underworld, and while details varied, the general story was the same; the Cooper Gang had tried to steal the diamond, and even they had failed.
The gang made no attempt to alter that story. It was perhaps the best protection the Nope Diamond could ever be given. Their silence following the heist added to it, making it seem as though the failure had been so terrible it had crushed their spirit. The truth was different.
They retired to one of their oldest hideouts – somewhere that truly felt like home. They joked about how, since travelling the globe was their daily grind, going home was their equivalent of a vacation. But it wasn't all video games and pizza. They talked at length about what exactly they should do next. Bentley, of course, had plenty of ideas. Murray contributed frequently, and with his signature aplomb. Sly mostly listened.
At night Sly would head up to the roof. He had set up a hammock there, and for hours at a time he would lie under the stars. Sometimes he read and reread the newspaper clipping of his father's heist. Sometimes he looked at the photograph of himself and Carmelita. Mostly he watched the night sky and thought.
He'd figure it out. He always did.
And as soon as he did, Carmelita was only a call away.
She waited to hear from him, quietly hopeful. But until he got in touch, she did what she always did; she threw herself at her work. As soon as she returned from Zootopia, Carmelita was back to kicking down doors and tackling perps with her typical fiery efficiency. Although she considered it business as usual, her co-workers noticed something of a change in her. She was less terse in the office, more prone to casual conversation. They figured the trip had gone well for her, but it was more because of her newfound correspondence.
Every week – at minimum, usually more often – she'd exchange a long email with her two new penpals. They frequently discussed work, swapping war stories and office gossip in equal measure. But they knew they could trust her with more personal news as well.
Nick and Judy talked. Not much more than they already did – because that was almost impossible – but in greater depth. Judy admitted to her recklessness, as well as her concerns about her social life. Nick voiced his anxieties; about his future as a police officer, about Judy, about anything and everything and nothing. Vitally, they listened to each other.
Life continued. There were leads to follow and witnesses to question and huge stacks of paperwork to gnaw through. But although they were dedicated to their jobs – even earning the occasional brisk compliment from Bogo – they found time to relax. Nick enjoyed the evenings they spent laughing in Ruby's bar; Judy loved the late-night talks they'd share after a long day of work. They both liked to visit Okonkwo's museum every so often. They'd sit in front of the Nope Diamond and spend a while quietly admiring it.
It was comforting to see something exactly where it was meant to be.
"Of Heists and Hustles"
Kevin Miller as Sly Cooper
Ginnifer Goodwin as Judy Hopps
Jason Bateman as Nick Wilde
Grey Griffin as Carmelita Fox
Idris Elba as Chief Bogo
Chris Murphy as Murray
Matt Olsen as Bentley
Ian McShane as Tai Lung
Shelby Rabara as Peridot
Jeremy Irons as Scar
Also Featuring the Voices of
Chadwick Boseman as T'Challa Okonkwo
Nate Torrence as Benjamin Clawhauser
Whoopi Goldberg as Shenzi Veldetta
Cheech Marin as Banzai
Jim Cummings as Ed
Tommy "Tiny" Lister as Finnick
Matthew Gafford as W. O'Donnell
Lindsay Bolin as Toriel Dreemurr
Daniella Van Dreel as Asriel Dreemurr
Lindsay Jones as Ruby Rose
Arryn Zech as Blake Belladonna
Mark "Rhino" Smith as Officer McHorn
Fabienne Rawley as Fabienne Growley (heh)
Peter Mansbridge as Peter Moosebridge
A Bunch of Actors Not on IMDB as Everybody Else
Hey there! Thanks for sticking with this long and ridiculous story. It was an absolute pleasure to write, although I guess that's not much a surprise. Turns out gluing my favourite movie to my favourite game series was a lot of fun! Who would've guessed?
I'd like to extend my sincerest gratitude to everybody who read and Kudos'd this story, with especially huge thanks to everyone who left a Comment. Seriously, you're all lovely. Getting such nice feedback on this story has been a real bright spot these past few months. Specific thanks must also go to my wonderful writing buddy (and also sister!) SparkleFists. She proofread every chapter of this story before they went live and listened patiently to my constant ramblings about talking animals – which, in fairness, she's had to endure for years now. Thank youuuuuuuuu~!
Well, you just read a novel's worth of me writing, so I won't keep you any longer. I'm gonna go catch up on college work and try really hard to not write any more novel-length crossover fanfictions. For a while, at least. See you after Zootopia 2! Or Sly 5, maybe.
(Look, a man can dream, okay?!)