Disclaimer: I'm not USA, Bellesario or CBS, so I don't claim to own them.
Fandoms: NCIS; White Collar
Word Count: 500
Written For: donutsweeper's January 2013 Prompt
Summary: Tony has chance meetings with Neal five times over the years.
Tony sighed as he saw the same kid he'd seen three days in row hustling people for their money with his card tricks. The kid couldn't be much younger than he was, maybe just barely legal. He looked like he hadn't eaten anything for days.
It was times like this that Tony wished there was more he could do with his job. Instead, he was just a lowly beat cop with barely enough cash to get by on his own.
Walking over to the kid, he pulled out the fifty he kept for emergencies.
"Find something better, kid," he said.
"Hypothetically, what would be the response time be if someone tried to steal a painting?"
"You planning something?" Tony asked his new drinking buddy.
Neal just snorted. "Nah, my girlfriend has a thing for the Raphael that's on display. Figured I'd tell her that I had it on good authority it was impossible to take."
"You'd be right. That show is big news. From what I've heard around the precinct, there's even an FBI agent in town because of it."
"Yeah, an Agent Burke or something like that. Heard he's kind of a jerk."
"FBI can be like that."
Tony had never worked with a fed before, but he was beginning to see why the other detectives had pawned the guy off on him. Peter Burke had a one-track mind and it ran around Neal Caffrey.
"Look, Agent Burke," Tony said hint of frustration, "If Caffrey was here, we would have caught him. I was at that bank five minutes after it was reported."
"Who gave you that sucker you're twirling in your hand?"
Tony looked down at it. "Some guy walking up to the bank. Said he was-"
"Glad you were there to protect things," Burke finished.
Something was off about the Navy officer that Tony was questioning. Apparently, he had been one of several who had had access to an Admiral's house over the past month. The same house from which a painting had been stolen, a forgery left in its place.
"So you've only served as a courier twice for the Admiral?"
"Yeah. Got in late from leave and this was my punishment. But it was worth it," the man added with a wink.
It was only later when the ID turned out to be fake that Tony realized the hair was way too long.
"Have we met before?" Neal asked with twinkling blue eyes.
"A few times," Tony admitted grudgingly. "Let's not rehash it. The FBI says you're the best when it comes to these cases and we need the best."
"Hey Peter, does my contract say I have to play with military guys?"
"Your contract says you do whatever I tell you to do. I figured you gave him a sucker that one time, so you owe him like you owed me."
"I need to learn not to give candy to federal agents," Neal stage whispered to Tony. "So what does NCIS need?"