The Crime of the Century
Summary: The biggest white collar crime is about to go down in New York City. There's just one small thing that stands in the way…..
Disclaimer: I do not own White Collar.
Warning: Spoilers for Book of Hours
Chapter 1: Ouch! That Had to Hurt…..
He was standing over the pier looking down at the Hudson River. He turned to his associate, Lucas. "Is everything ready?" he asked, his voice gruff.
Lucas nodded. "It is. There is just one small problem that could possibly be a big problem."
"And what is that?" he asked.
"The FBI," said Lucas. He pulled out a folder and opened. A black and white photograph was sitting on top. "FBI Agent Peter Burke has stepped up his game. His closing rate has shot back up to a hundred percent in the past three months."
"Interesting," he said. "It looks like Agent Burke has a secret weapon."
"He does," said Lucas. He grabbed the next photograph, showing Agent Burke standing next to another man, wearing a certain hat.
"Neal Caffrey out and is working for the FBI," said Lucas grimly.
"I should have guessed," he said. "Caffrey's good. He's the only one who pulled one over me. " He paused. "And lived to tell the tale. You are right, Lucas; Caffrey is a big problem."
"What should we do?" asked Lucas, timidly.
"What else?" he asked. "Eliminate Neal Caffrey."
"Hey Peter," said Neal causally as he strolled into Peter's office. Peter didn't even look up from his computer screen. Neal sat down in the chair, propped his feet up on his desk and took off his hat.
Peter groaned. "Do you always have to wear that stupid hat?"
"It's not stupid," said Neal. "And yes, I do." He placed it back on his head. "So, what do we have on the calendar for today?"
Peter pointed a large stack of manila folders sitting on his desk. "Cold cases."
Neal smiled and picked up the first folder. "Hey Peter."
"Five bucks says I solve one of the cold cases before lunch," said Neal, grinning.
Peter looked up at him. Then he smiled. "You're on!"
For the next two hours, Neal sat quietly in Peter's office reading through cold cases. Neal sat down one of the folders and looked at the clock. Ten o' clock. Perfect time for a coffee break.
Neal stood up. "I'm going grab a cup of coffee. You want anything?"
"Where you going?" asked Peter, not even bothering to look up.
"To the coffee shop across the street," said Neal. He groaned when he saw Peter raised his eyebrow. "Oh c'mon Peter! When are you going to learn to trust me? "
"Based on what? " asked Peter.
"Hey! I thought after the whole thing with the bible, you'd learn to trust me," said Neal. "I mean I didn't take the bible OR the money."
"I know," said Peter. "Barelli keeps complaining about the bullet hole in his bible."
Neal threw his hands up in the air. "What was I suppose to do?! Let her shot me?"
"Of course not," said Peter quickly. He sighed. "Fine. But if you're not back in ten minutes-"
"You'll throw me back in the slammer, I know," said Neal. He turned and walked out the door.
"Bring me back a decaf!" shouted Peter as Neal walked away. "And no sugar in it this time!"
"Here you go," said the barista, handing Neal two coffee cups. "One cup of black coffee and one cup of decaf with extra sugar."
Neal smiled like the Chester cat. "Thank you so much." He grabbed both coffee cups and walked out the door. He was about to walk out the door when someone bumped into him, almost causing him to drop both cups.
"Whoops!" said the man. Neal looked at him. He had blonde hair and hazel eyes "I am so sorry about that! Are you okay, man?"
"Yeah," said Neal, slowly. "I'm fine. Just be careful next time, man."
"Yeah of course," he said. "Have a good day!"
"Yeah, you too," said Neal, slowly. Something didn't seem right. Neal shrugged his shoulders brushing it off as some clumsy idiot and walked out the door.
Neal walked back always towards the crosswalk. He waited at the corner until the light changed. When the walk sign light up, Neal stepped out into the street.
He was about halfway across the street when a black car came out of nowhere. Before Neal could get out of the way, the car slammed into him, head on.
Neal was suddenly thrown into the air. Then as suddenly as he was airborne, he was landing hard on the pavement. His right arm crumpled underneath him and Neal was sure he heard bones snap. His rib cage also took the brunt of the fall. He gasped in pain as he felt all the air being sucked out his lungs with a hot, blinding white pain. He tried to keep his head from slamming into the pavement, but it was no use.
His last conscious thought was that Peter was going to kill him for dropping the coffee.
Peter was sitting in his office, waiting for Neal to come back with the cup of coffee. He glanced down at his watch. Neal had been gone eleven minutes.
Probably putting extra sugar in my coffee….
Jones appeared at his door, looked rushed. "Agent Burke, the director needs you downstairs ASAP."
Peter nodded. He grabbed his gun and headed towards the door. "Neal should be back on his way with coffee. Have him stay here until I get back," Peter ordered as he ran to the elevator. He pushed the button and the doors opened. Peter stepped in. The doors were about to close when Jones slipped into the elevator.
Peter glared at him. "What are you going, Jones? I told you wait at my office for Neal!"
"Sir, you left before I could tell you," said Jones. "Caffrey is the reason the chief wants to see you downstairs."
Peter punched the wall. "Damn it! He ran, didn't he?"
The elevator door opened and Peter ran out. Jones followed behind him. "Wait! You don't understand! Caffrey didn't---"
Jones never got a chance to finish as Peter ran out through the door. Outside it was a mad house. The street outside was packed with emergency vehicles, all their lights flashing. They all seemed to be gathered around a central figure, but Peter was too far away to see.
"What happened here?" Peter asked one of the NYPD officers.
"Hit and run," said the officer.
Peter nodded and looked around for the director. As he was looking around for the director, his eyes landed on a small item lying on the ground. His eyes widened in horror. He'd recognize that hat anywhere.
Peter snapped out of his shocked state and pushed his way through the crowd. He saw Neal lying on the gurney. His head was wrapped in a white bandage. His right shoulder looked strongly dislocated and bent. He was unconsciousness.
"What happened?" asked Peter. "Is he going to be okay?"
The female paramedic looked up-she had just finished putting an IV in Neal's arm. "He has a concussion and his arm is dislocated and the wrist is broken. Looks like he broke a couple of ribs too. We're taking him to the hospital to make sure there's no internal bleeding."
Peter nodded. "I'm riding with him."
"Sir," she started but Peter stopped her off.
"Listen, this guy is a FBI consultant," said Peter sharply. "And he's a felon. Didn't you see that ankle bracelet on his ankle? It's not for decoration! He is my responsibility. So I'm riding with him. Got that?!"
The female paramedic nodded. "Hop in."
Peter jumped in the back and turned to Jones. "Jones, I want you to find the SOB who did this and have him in custody by the time I get back, got it?"
Jones nodded. "Yes sir."
The paramedic hopped in and the ambulance took off to the nearest hospital.
Peter looked down at Neal's still form. He sighed. "How is that you always seems to get into trouble?"
It was two hours later. Peter was sitting in a hospital waiting room, drinking a very bad cup of coffee. Neal had a broken wrist, a dislocated shoulder, and two broken ribs doctor wanted to run a CT scan, just to make sure that there was no inter-cranium bleeding.
"Agent Burke?" Peter looked up and saw Jones standing in the doorway.
"How is he?" Jones asked.
"Broken wrist, dislocated shoulder, and two broken ribs," said Peter. "Right now they are running a CT scan." Jones nodded.
"What did you find?" asked Peter.
"We pulled the security tape," said Jones. He handed a file of pictures to Peter. Peter opened it and looked through the pictures.
"Did you get a license plate number off the car?" asked Peter.
Jones shook his head. "No. The plate's covered, making it unreadable." He paused. "There's something else, Peter."
Peter looked up from the pictures. "What is it?"
"The car didn't pull out into the intersection until Caffrey was already in the intersection," said Jones. He paused. "Someone deliberately tried to kill Neal Caffrey."
A/N: Dun, dun, dun!
This story came to me as I was studying tonight. Let me know what you think! Please R&R!