Two Bald Guys are Temporarily Imprisoned
for cell's taxfic challenge (this year's secret tax word was "evasion") and also some other people's "So, what are you in for?" challenge (cereta, tzikeh, et al)
crossover of "White Collar" with my "Date" universe, which is itself a crossover of "Smallville" with "Buffy: the Vampire Slayer"
"So. What are you in for?" Mozzie finally asked. Six hours of cautious silence was about his limit when locked in a small cell with one other guy - it was a flaw.
"Tax evasion," the man spat. He looked disgusted.
"Allegedly," Mozzie added automatically. "Me, too. Alexander Summers," he introduced himself with his current nom de guerre, using the false cheerfulness he'd decided on for this alternate persona's personality, even though it was apparently blown beyond all possible repair.
"Alexander Summers? Let me guess - pulled in by confused-looking guys, with a warrant they didn't seem to have ever seen before, and the charges are completely bogus. And yet, your lawyers can't find crack one to work them open with." The guy shook his head and looked worried. "I should've known it was a Buffy thing," he muttered.
Mozzie smiled tightly at him. "And you are?" he prompted.
Okay, then. Rich, very very rich. Also allegedly a possible psychopath.
The silence in the cell resumed, and continued for approximately three hours. It was late, or maybe early was a better term - past midnight. Lex kept looking at the place where his watch obviously should have been, and each time his face contorted briefly with a dangerous-looking expression of vengefulness and rage. Mozzie pretended not to notice.
Nine hours in - Mozzie was practically starting to twitch. Luthor wasn't a snitch or a plant; he was a rich man, and a reasonable thing to do would have been to start laying groundwork for a con. But Luthor didn't look-and-feel like a good target; he felt like a crazy guy on the edge of being really dangerous, and that always made Moz want to just keep his head down. The cowardice-thing had worked out pretty well for him, actually. But it had been a long time in, and it didn't make sense, and even in front of Luthor he had to start trying to assess the physical cell. If it had been this long, then reasonable prudent ways out were getting unlikely, and even though a jailbreak was also very unlikely to work with no outside help and no actual plan, it had been nine hours. Mozzie got up and started examining the locks, hinges, and ventilation.
Two silent hours later, he sat back down. The cell was disturbingly modern and well put together.
"Nothing?" Luthor asked.
"Nada," Mozzie confirmed dejectedly. "Zip. Bupkus."
Neither Luthor nor Mozzie was going to sleep. They hadn't been brought any dinner, either. Or lunch, and they hadn't been escorted out to a dining hall. They hadn't seen or heard any guards since they'd been brought in and left. This was non-standard. Non-standard was not good.
Finally there was a sound from outside the cell. "Lex!" someone yelled. "Dammit, where is he?"
Luthor sprang up and started pounding on the wire-reinforced window. "Xander! I'm in here!"
A pirate suddenly appeared in their window - well, a scruffy-looking dark-haired guy with an eye-patch. "Oh, thank God," he said. He beckoned wildly at someone down the corridor.
Neal. Suddenly there was Neal. Mozzie felt weak with relief, and he was glad he was still sitting down. He hadn't let himself feel the full weight of just how wrong and dangerous and wrong the situation was until just now, when it looked like there was a real way out of it.
Neal winked at him as he worked the lock. "Hey, Moz. We're here to rescue you."
Luthor and Xander both said, "Aren't you a little short for a storm trooper?" - Xander loud and jokingly, Luthor under his breath. They smiled at each other. "Where's Buffy?" Luthor asked the pirate.
"She and Will and Dawnie are the Big Gun on this one," the pirate explained nonsensically as they all left the cell. "Demon in the compu system of the City and County of New York. We've got a FBI fraud squad for Bait, and me and Neal here are Back-Up, or well maybe Plan B - no *legal* way to get you out until the girls purge, purify, and puree the bad guy."
They moved quickly out of the jail, Neal neatly re-locking everything behind them as they went.
Every cop, guard, and clerk they passed was fast asleep.
"How did you guys manage that?" Moz whispered to Neal.
Neal's face was full of suppressed glee. "Magic!" he answered.