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White Collar & due South, Mozzie gen, 1540 words, G-rated. Many many thanks to Sage for beta reading, and mergatrude for her sparkly pink crayon (and to both of them for hosting this party!).

Mozzie turned slowly. A bright red uniform with riding boots and a wide-brimmed hat sat down beside him, and the gray-haired guy inside it looked at him with interest.


Don't Kill the Messenger (he's already dead)



It was two-thirty on a cold gray Chicago afternoon, and Mozzie was trying to blend in with the denizens of a seedy, overheated Southside bar. They all seemed to have an excessive number of tattoos and, as far as Mozzie could tell, no regard for personal hygiene or safety.

Mozzie knew he'd been hanging out with Neal and Kate too much when he felt uncomfortable in places like this. Neal had a way of making his criminal exploits feel like nothing more than enterprising business ventures, and when you hung out with the relatively harmless art-thief-and-pickpocket crowd, the rougher side of the tracks seemed even more dangerous by comparison.

And now that so much business was handled online, the call for this sort of liaison was limited. But today Mozzie was meeting an old guy who didn't even have email, let alone any kind of encryption, and who'd refused pointblank to entrust the goods—certain black-market ink compounds—to the US Postal Service or even a courier.

So Mozzie sat at the bar, hunched over a pint of watery tap beer, and hoped that no one would notice him except his contact. A hope that was swiftly extinguished.

"No point waiting, son," said a gruff voice from behind him. "The jig is up."

Mozzie turned slowly. A bright red uniform with riding boots and a wide-brimmed hat sat down beside him, and the gray-haired guy inside it looked at him with interest.

No way was this his contact. His contact was known as Shadow Man. This guy looked like a neon sign for a costume hire business. "The jig is up," repeated Mozzie. "Is that some kind of a code? Because, you know, that generally only works if both parties know there's a code." He ate a pretzel. "I'm just saying, if you're expecting some kind of cryptic response, you're going to be disappointed."

"Oh, I'm never disappointed," said the man. "The trick is to keep your tea in your boots. That way it stays nice and dry."

Definitely not his contact. Also, totally incoherent. Why did these kinds of mentally disturbed people always gravitate to him? Neal never had this problem. "I am trying," said Mozzie, "to retain some degree of subtlety here. Inconspicuousness, if you will. For reasons of personal safety."

The man beamed at him. There was something strange about him—beside the gibberish and the uniform—but Mozzie was too irritated to pin it down.

"You're not helping," he added, since his hint clearly hadn't been hinty enough.

"So, you're Tiberius's boy," said the man. He put his hat on the bar and stole a handful of pretzels from the bowl Mozzie had staked out for himself. "Frankly, we never thought he had it in him."

"Who?"

The man was unhinged. Mozzie was going to have to persuade him to find someone else to ramble incoherently at, and to do that, he was going to have to talk to him.

"Your father," said the man, casually, apparently unaware of the effect that those words would have.

Mozzie jumped—a regrettable habit he'd never been able to shake, when the subject of his parentage came up. He knocked over his glass and sent beer pooling across the scarred old bar top and into the old guy's lap.

The old guy barely reacted to the sudden malty deluge. "Well, that was unexpected," he said. "Obviously."

Mozzie grabbed a couple of beer mats and used them to stem the tide that was flowing in his direction. Then he pulled himself up to his full height. "My origins are shrouded in mystery," he said with dignity and only the slightest quaver. "And what's with the outfit, anyway? Did you escape from the Ringling Brothers?"

"Royal Canadian Mounted Police," said the old guy. "Sergeant Robert Fraser, but you can call me Uncle Bob."

A Mountie. Oh hell. If this guy really was a cop—even a foreign one—that was a total disaster. Mozzie rubbed his face and set about extricating himself from this mess. "I don't have an Uncle Bob. Or a father." He signaled for a replacement beer, avoiding the dirty glare of the barman who was cleaning up the spillage. "And if I did," Mozzie added belatedly, "he definitely wouldn't be Canadian."

"It's not the father who's a shock," said the Mountie, shaking his head. "It's a wonder you aren't one of those brassica babies, the way old Tiberius carried on."

Mozzie frowned. "Cabbage-patch kids," he translated absent-mindedly. "What are you talking about?" Then he caught himself. "No, forget I asked. Forget I said a word. I'm meeting a man who's very—shy. He won't talk to me if he finds me cozying up to a post-diet Santa Claus." Especially if that Santa was dressed like a cop.

Bob just smiled. "No point now. I told you—the jig is up."

"To which particular dance are you referring?" asked Mozzie, exasperated.

"Your friend—the unfeasibly good-looking one." Bob stared into the middle distance, head tilted, then nodded. "Yes. He's just been caught by the FBI. Not bad police work, overall," he added with grudging respect, "though in my day we didn't rely quite so heavily on all those electronic gizmos. No, give me a sharpened stick and a paper bag—"

Mozzie shook his head clear and closed his mouth, which was hanging open. Neal—but— "I don't believe it. He has eyes on them. He'd have seen them coming."

"Burke may be a Yank, but he's a solid detective," said Bob. "It has to be in the blood, detective work like that. You can't teach it, you know."

Mozzie shivered. Burke was the agent who'd been after Neal for years now. He'd tracked them from San Diego to Dallas, and then to New York. But he couldn't possibly have—

Unless—

Oh fuck.

"I expect you have a phonecall to make," said Bob, patting Mozzie's arm. "Don't mind me."

Mozzie barely felt the pat, too distracted with— Wait. He didn't feel it at all. "How do you know about my associates? This is a set-up, isn't it? There's no ink."

Shadow Man had to be in on it. Mozzie should have known never to trust anyone who claimed not to use email. He sprang to his feet, grabbed his coat and pointed at Bob. "I was never here. You never met me."

Bob stood up, too. "Don't be silly, son. I'm dead, not senile. I know what I know, and what I can tell you is you are definitely Tiberius's boy. Rude, paranoid, strange. No, there's no question." He scooped his hat off the bar.

"You're dead," repeated Mozzie flatly. This wasn't a sting; it was a practical joke. He hated practical jokes.

"Nearly twelve years," said Bob cheerfully. "My, how time flits past. You know, if you ever find yourself in Canada, you should look up your cousins."

"Cousins?" Mozzie was distracted by the soul-chilling fact that the Mountie, who should have been soaked with beer from the waist down, was in fact not. "I have cousins? Are they dead too?"

"Benton and Margaret? Not at all. They do take after me in other respects, though." He puffed out his chest.

"I'm losing my mind." Mozzie looked at the barman. "What's in that beer? Is there lactose in that beer?"

"It's beer," growled the barman, in such a way that Mozzie had no desire to delve further.

"Noted. Thank you." He gathered his coat and hurried for the door.

"Come for Thanksgiving," Bob called after him. "Caroline wants to meet you. She always was unreasonably fond of Tiberius. And you won't have much else to do, with your friend in jail."

Mozzie paused with his hand on the heavy swing door. "Excuse me, did you just suggest that I should kill myself for Thanksgiving?"

Bob looked shocked. "There's no call for that kind of talk. Good Lord, even Tiberius would never—"

"Then how exactly do you suggest I join you and your other-worldly friends? Just pop down to Hades for a quick bite of pumpkin pie, I suppose?" Mozzie honestly couldn't believe he was having this conversation. He was just glad no one else in the bar was paying them any attention.

Bob settled his hat firmly on his head. "Don't be foolish. There's no such place. No, all you have to do is look in your closet."

"My closet." And that was it. Mozzie had hit a wall, overcome with incredulity fatigue. He got that with Neal sometimes, too—that perilous state after too many outrageous suggestions where he stopped questioning anything. It usually led to dangerous criminal feats and serious injury. In this case, it would only lead to opening his closet door. He was fairly sure he could handle that. "My closet," he said again, humoring the old guy who, after all, was either a ghost or impeccably scotchgarded. "Okay. Well. I guess I'll see you in November, Uncle Bob."

"October," said Bob."You'll find us. It's in the blood."

Mozzie shook his head, and pushed out into the cold to call the ink guy and see where the hell he'd got to. And maybe to check up on Neal, too. Just in case the crazy old allegedly dead Mountie guy was right.


END




For isiscolo
Prompt: "Well, that was unexpected."

Comments

( 47 comments — Leave a comment )
rosiespark
Apr. 9th, 2010 09:55 pm (UTC)
Bravo! That was both unexpected and fantastic! \o/

Oh, and Neal being described as "unfeasibly good-looking" cracked me up. Because he IS. LOL.
china_shop
Apr. 9th, 2010 10:41 pm (UTC)
Yay, thank you! :-D
sophia_sol
Apr. 9th, 2010 11:35 pm (UTC)
Oh my goodness that is not in the least what I would have expected from a Due South/White Collar crossover, but it was SO PERFECT. I giggled my way through the entire thing. Mozzie as the son of Tiberius! Rude, paranoid, strange. No, there's no question. Ahahahaha.
china_shop
Apr. 10th, 2010 05:42 am (UTC)
Yay, thank you! \o/ (Now I want to know what you would've expected. *g*)
sophia_sol
Apr. 10th, 2010 05:53 am (UTC)
Hmm, I think what I would have expected would be wacky casefic involving the favourite slash pairings of the two fandoms. That or something involving Neal and Fraser interacting, with their good looks and the way everyone seems to love them, and their very different moralities. But I CANNOT ARGUE with a fic with dead!Bob and Mozzie!
china_shop
Apr. 10th, 2010 06:23 am (UTC)
That or something involving Neal and Fraser interacting, with their good looks and the way everyone seems to love them, and their very different moralities.

Hee! I was wondering about that too, but found that I was actually more interested in finding out what Fraser and Peter thought of each other. :-) So many possibilities!
sophia_sol
Apr. 10th, 2010 06:41 am (UTC)
Oh yeah, I've totally been thinking about Peter and Fraser interacting as well, and how AWESOME it would be -- it just wasn't what my immediate expectation would have been. But basically I want a millionty bajillion crossover fics between these two fandoms, now that you've opened my mind to the idea of it!
china_shop
Apr. 10th, 2010 08:40 pm (UTC)
But basically I want a millionty bajillion crossover fics between these two fandoms

Yes! I really like how DS brings the wacky. *g*
sophia_sol
Apr. 11th, 2010 10:32 pm (UTC)
The wacky is one of my very favourite things about DS. (er, one of MANY. :D)
(Deleted comment)
sophia_sol
Apr. 11th, 2010 10:31 pm (UTC)
Re: Due South/White collar Peter and Fraser
Yeah, exactly! It SO needs to happen! I am, alas, NOT the one to write it though -- me and plot are at best passing acquaintances in my fic....
hpstrangelove
Apr. 10th, 2010 12:13 am (UTC)
This was great! I could 'hear' both of them so perfectly in my head, it was as if I was watching an episode on TV. You nailed their personalities wonderfully too.
china_shop
Apr. 10th, 2010 05:42 am (UTC)
*beams* That's lovely to hear -- thanks!
deepbluemermaid
Apr. 10th, 2010 08:12 am (UTC)
All I know about Due South is that it's about a Mountie with a wolf-like dog who's working in Chicago and has a succession of partners called Ray with whom he is very slashy. (It's amazing what you can pick up by fandom osmosis...)

Having said that, this crossover worked for me as a DS-impaired White Collar fan. Poor paranoid, confused Moz, meeting a Mountie ghost in a Chicago dive bar! I love that the description "unfeasibly good-looking" is enough to define Neal, because it's so true (see icon).
china_shop
Apr. 10th, 2010 10:09 am (UTC)
this crossover worked for me as a DS-impaired White Collar fan.

That's excellent to hear. Thanks! (And yes, perfect icon! :-)

(Btw, we've now watched 4 episodes of Leverage, and I'm enjoying it. It's very A Team-y. So thanks again for that, too. *g*)
asimaiyat
Apr. 11th, 2010 02:11 am (UTC)
we've now watched 4 episodes of Leverage, and I'm enjoying it.

jooiiiiin uuuussssss.
china_shop
Apr. 11th, 2010 03:31 am (UTC)
Hee! I'm not feeling at all fannish about it (yet?), but I am enjoying the show so far. :-)
theonlytwin
Apr. 10th, 2010 08:28 am (UTC)
everything about this is absolute win.
china_shop
Apr. 10th, 2010 10:10 am (UTC)
*beams* Thanks!
misura
Apr. 10th, 2010 10:13 am (UTC)
Thank you kindly for making my weekend and breaking my brain due to overexposure to awesomeness, because this was just hee! and then I went ooh! and there also was some aah! and eeh! mixed in with overlapping moments of feeling bubbly cheerful and giggly, and Mozzie! Meeting Fraser Senior! Who is actually his uncle! <3<3<3

Loved where you set this timewise and locationwise, too - just pre-series for WC and ... post-series for dS?
china_shop
Apr. 10th, 2010 08:41 pm (UTC)
\o/ \o/ So glad it worked for you. And yes to the timing (which, oh, means I got the number of years Bob's been dead wrong, DOH! *hurries to fix*). Thanks!! :-)
gritkitty
Apr. 10th, 2010 12:02 pm (UTC)
That was fun!
china_shop
Apr. 10th, 2010 08:42 pm (UTC)
Thanks! :-)
asimaiyat
Apr. 11th, 2010 02:09 am (UTC)
EEEEEEE. This is a delight. I saw your username and "Mozzie gen" and I grinned, and the grin just got bigger and bigger.
china_shop
Apr. 11th, 2010 03:32 am (UTC)
\o/!! Thanks! :-)
sparrowsverse
Apr. 11th, 2010 03:50 am (UTC)
LOVE! There's gonna be more, right? :D

Little bit, just for you. :D

"You've seen him too?" Benton asked Mozzie. "Yes, your father is a real piece of work I might add," Mozzie muttered. "Oh good, I thought for some reason I might have been going really crazy for a bit there," Benton said.
china_shop
Apr. 11th, 2010 09:24 am (UTC)
Hee! Perhaps you should take it from here. *g*

Thanks! :-D
davincis_girl
Apr. 11th, 2010 03:56 am (UTC)
What a surprise. Thank you for this. It made me smile.
china_shop
Apr. 11th, 2010 09:24 am (UTC)
I'm glad. Thanks! :-)
sirwynai
Apr. 11th, 2010 05:44 am (UTC)
Oh so very interesting, I love the voices in this story. :D And how Mozzie learns that Neal was caught by a ghost. So much <3
china_shop
Apr. 11th, 2010 09:25 am (UTC)
Yay, thank you! :-)
byrons_brain
Apr. 11th, 2010 07:58 pm (UTC)
Awww adorable!
china_shop
Apr. 12th, 2010 08:13 am (UTC)
Thanks! :-)
(Deleted comment)
china_shop
Apr. 12th, 2010 08:12 am (UTC)
Re: Hilarious!
Yay! So glad you enjoyed it -- thanks! :-D
cyberducks
Apr. 13th, 2010 05:10 am (UTC)
Dead!Bob and Mozzie - I love it!

Uncle Tiberius he of the cabbage leaves reproduced...wow.

I want to be a little mouse in the corner of Mozzie's closet now.

I wonder what Benton and Peter would make of each other?
china_shop
Apr. 13th, 2010 08:19 pm (UTC)
I've been wondering that too. Heh.

Glad you liked this -- thanks! :-D
burntcopper
Apr. 13th, 2010 11:11 pm (UTC)
Ahahahahahaha.

Oh lord. Now I really, really want to see RayK and Mozzie face off in the battle of the unable to sit still and talk fast while Peter, Benton and Neal sit there looking fascinated. (Peter and Neal are of course taking bets on *something*.)
china_shop
Apr. 14th, 2010 09:26 am (UTC)
Heeeee! Party time! El would be vastly amused, too. *g*

Thanks!
snoopypez
Apr. 16th, 2010 06:02 am (UTC)
HEEEE. oh, Bob. it was all great, but this was my favourite-- "Excuse me, did you just suggest that I should kill myself for Thanksgiving?"

SNORT.
china_shop
Apr. 16th, 2010 07:40 am (UTC)
\o/ Thanks, you!
risetsu_hime
May. 10th, 2010 07:17 pm (UTC)
Hey I really like this fic both Moz and Fraser Sr. was spot on.And that line about Peter makes me wonder

"It has to be in the blood, detective work like that. You can't teach it, you know."

I hope we could see their past in future episodes :)

By the way I would love to see Neal with mountie uniform in red sarge and all
he could borrow er steal something from Canadian consulate maybe ? Just an idea :P






china_shop
May. 11th, 2010 09:16 pm (UTC)
Glad you liked it yay! Thanks! (And oh yes, someone should totally write Neal dressed up as a Mountie. Hee!)
tringasolitaria
May. 14th, 2010 11:42 pm (UTC)
That was very good! :) Thanks.
china_shop
May. 15th, 2010 08:09 pm (UTC)
Glad you liked it. Thank you! :-)
cantarina1
Mar. 24th, 2011 04:50 pm (UTC)
I loved this! I expected the Mountie to Benton, but when he opened his mouth he sounded so confusingly like Bob that I had to laugh when I realised that was who you'd bee writing all along. Both characters feel spot on, despite the odd odd crossover you've plunked them into! (I can't even imagine Mozzie in the same room as his cousins, especially Benton. What would they even have to say to each other?)
china_shop
Mar. 28th, 2011 11:58 pm (UTC)
What would they even have to say to each other?

Hee! I think Mozzie would be very careful not to say anything of substance at all! *g*

Thanks so much! I'm glad it worked for you. :-D
( 47 comments — Leave a comment )