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17 August 2010 @ 11:58 pm
White Collar Fic: Skill Development and the Burgeoning Con Artist  
Written for whitecollar100 Challenge #007 – Background


Title: Skill Development and the Burgeoning Con Artist
Pairing/Characters: Neal
Rating: PG13
Word Count: 200
Spoilers: Pilot
Summary: Neal's been developing skills all his life - some more useful than others
Notes/Warnings: Read the disclaimer on my LJ


When he was four years old, Neal learned how to become the center of attention.

Whether at the park or the shopping mall he lifted his voice, threw out his arms and playacted his way into the hearts of every passerby, earning candy, small change and even an offer to audition for commercials. At first just being hammy worked, but then he discovered that making people laugh and feel good made for the best rewards. Some of his best cons wound up people he left behind a bit poorer in the asset department, but far lighter in spirit.

When he was eight years old, Neal learned how to become invisible.

Fading into the background was a survival skill and he learned it well. Not getting noticed meant not getting hit. Only that skill turned out useful later when witnesses could only recall 'a white man with brown hair, average height, average build' and nothing more. Even better, an expert pickpocket was neither seen nor felt. He'd come and go, unnoticed, as if he'd evaporated into thin air.

When he went to prison Neal learned there's no such thing as invisible in jail.

Thankfully he'd already learned how to be tough.

o--c
 
 
 
Emma DeMarais: BlueEyeemmademarais on August 18th, 2010 08:50 am (UTC)
Confession
I confess I was too tired to come up with a better title or do any major rewrites on this fic.

Mea culpa.

Thanks,

Emma DeMarais
Ayesha: City Under Skybrowngirl on August 18th, 2010 11:22 am (UTC)
Oh Neal! It's all cheeky and fun and then that depressing but inevitable end! I'm so glad he was tough enough to be resilient.
Emma DeMaraisemmademarais on August 18th, 2010 06:39 pm (UTC)
/hugs you/

Sadly, crime doesn't pay so Neal gets more than his share of education from the school of hard knocks. /sigh/
(Deleted comment)
Emma DeMaraisemmademarais on August 18th, 2010 06:40 pm (UTC)
Thank you. I couldn't just leave it as a frothly forgettable piece - that angst just has to slip its way in...
(Deleted comment)
Emma DeMaraisemmademarais on August 19th, 2010 07:18 am (UTC)
I'm an angst fan, but yeah, sometimes I need a dose of ficcy humor to combat RL angst. ;-)
ladygray99ladygray99 on August 18th, 2010 02:57 pm (UTC)
Poor little Neal having to develop those skills. And that last line was a bit of a gut shot. Still a good look at Neal's life.
Emma DeMaraisemmademarais on August 18th, 2010 06:41 pm (UTC)
Thanks. It was a lot to try to squeeze in (thus my failure to make it in 100 words and going for 200) but that's what your prompt gave me.
elrhiarhodan: WC 100 - Sampleelrhiarhodan on August 18th, 2010 04:09 pm (UTC)
All I want to do is go awwwwwwwwwwwwwww and give wee!Neal a hug, and maybe a nice bedroom with toys and a dog and regular meals so he didn't have to learn how to become invisible.

As always, I am in awe of your talent. Thank you!
Emma DeMaraisemmademarais on August 18th, 2010 06:43 pm (UTC)
/blushes/ Thank you so much!

I wish Neal had that kind of backstory, but you know if he was from a loving supportive middle class home he'd at least be a lawyer or politician by now and not a career criminal. (At least in a loving supportive poor home he could have become an artist!)
elrhiarhodanelrhiarhodan on August 18th, 2010 06:45 pm (UTC)
I just read a JE tweet that said that we'll be getting some of Neal's backstory in S2.2.

I don't know whether to flail or cry.
Emma DeMaraisemmademarais on August 18th, 2010 06:56 pm (UTC)
Wait... S2.2? Doesn't that refer to Need to Know which aired weeks ago? /is confuzled/

Knowing WC it will just be a tidbit. They won't give away the farm in one episode even if it falls during sweeps.
elrhiarhodanelrhiarhodan on August 18th, 2010 06:57 pm (UTC)
S2.2 means the second half of the second season.

S2.02 means "Need to Know"

Sorry for the confuzulation.
Emma DeMaraisemmademarais on August 18th, 2010 07:16 pm (UTC)
Ahh! I've never heard people divide up their seasons like that. Sounds very cable. ;-)

Thanks for clarifying.
elrhiarhodanelrhiarhodan on August 18th, 2010 07:21 pm (UTC)
Yeah - it's really very "USA Network" too.
Emma DeMaraisemmademarais on August 18th, 2010 08:12 pm (UTC)
Well, USA's been putting out really great shows for years now so they must be doing something right! I'm amused at how much I've watched USA and how much I *haven't* watched NBC in the last five years or so.
elrhiarhodanelrhiarhodan on August 18th, 2010 08:14 pm (UTC)
I haven't watched network tv in years. I think the last thing I watched was Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip, and that's been off the air for 4+ years?
Emma DeMaraisemmademarais on August 18th, 2010 08:29 pm (UTC)
I watch a fair amount if you include the netlets (Fox and CW): Criminal Minds, Castle, Bones, Supernatural, The Mentalist and Lie to Me. Plus I watched Numb3rs on CBS for its entire 6 season run. In fact, I kind of marveled not long ago just how good some network TV has gotten. I had all but given up network TV for cable and then they put on House and Medium and Numb3rs and I had to rethink the land of sitcoms starring fat supposedly funny men married to hot women they'd never land IRL.
julietmjulietm on August 19th, 2010 05:52 pm (UTC)
I ♥ Neal

He's just so beautiful and amazing. *le sigh

Edited at 2010-08-19 05:52 pm (UTC)
Emma DeMaraisemmademarais on August 19th, 2010 06:10 pm (UTC)
Yay for you and Candi watching White Collar with us!

(It's good to have a pretty new show to distract us from N3 being over. /sniff/)
julietm: Hot FBIjulietm on August 20th, 2010 08:18 pm (UTC)
Yes, it is good to have something else...especially with shiny men who wear sexy hats and walk around shirtless. *takes a moment*

We are actually all caught up!! : )