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19 December 2010 @ 08:34 pm
White Collar/Burn Notice Xover Fiction: "Summoning The Christmas Spirit" (PG)  
Title: Summoning The Christmas Spirit
Fandom: White Collar/Burn Notice (Crossover)
Author: HalfshellVenus
Characters: Mozzie, Neal, Sam, Michael, Madeline, Fiona, Elizabeth (Gen)
Rating: PG
Summary: The night was long, but far from silent.
Author's Notes: Written for usanetwork_las, for the "Christmas Carol" challenge (some canon events have overridden parts of this since then, but the spirit is still the same).
Also for writers_choice, this is "Make a Change."

~*~*~*~

"You're going where?"

Mozzie had heard Neal the first time, but he'd hoped Neal was joking. Mozzie always spent Christmas with Neal. Even when Neal was in prison, Mozzie had gone there with Kate and a bagful of presents. So Neal couldn't possibly be saying—

"Peter and Elizabeth invited us to spend Christmas with them."

It was thoughtful (and Mozzie was certain Mrs. Suit was behind it). But Mozzie never felt very sociable at Christmas, not like other people did. With Neal, he could always be himself. With anyone else, he had to put on a show, and Mozzie wasn't a very Christmassy person to begin with.

In all honesty (not that he liked this about himself), Mozzie was actually kind of a curmudgeon.

"I can't," he said, "not even for Mrs. Suit. You know how I feel about Christmas—the commerciality, the forced festivity."

"Which was why I was hoping you'd join us," Neal said drily. "Do the un-Mozzie thing and give Christmas a chance."

"Nothing doing. But you go. Give the Suits my regrets. Tell them I'm visiting my mother at the nursing home."

"You don't have a mother," Neal said softly.

"But I could. So they don't have to take it personally."

"All right." Neal sounded doubtful. "But if you change your mind, you know where we'll be. Merry Christmas, Mozzie."

"You too."

Mozzie went out into the snowy evening to begin the long trip home.

When he got to his storage locker, someone was waiting outside.

"Sam! I haven't seen you since the Chicago job. What're you doing in New York?"

"Just passing through. A storage unit, Moz? Really?"

"As if you've ever valued a permanent address!"

"Yeah, but it's like you've put your whole life on hold, not just your furniture."

Mozzie opened the door. "Are you here for a lecture? Or something else?"

"Just delivering a note from the Cosmos: log onto your life, Mozzie. Live it. Capisce?"

"Is this about tomorrow?" Mozzie asked.

"Maybe. Nobody tells me anything."

"You're not asking me to hack into something?"

"Nah, I've got people for that. So, you know… get on with it. Okay?"

"If you say so." Mozzie put down his satchel, but when he turned around Sam was gone.

Random. Mozzie plugged in the electric blanket for the futon and brushed his teeth for bed.

He'd just drifted off when he woke to find a man in a white linen suit sitting in his prized Shaker chair.

"How'd you get in?" Mozzie asked, suddenly wishing he kept a gun.

"I am the Ghost of Christmas Past."

"You look pretty solid to me."

"It's more of an abstraction," the man admitted.

"Have we met?"

"No."

"You're that friend of Sam's, aren't you?"

"No. You're really trying my patience." The man drew his hand across the air: "Behold."

"Behold?"

"This is your past…"

"I know," Mozzie said. "I was there."

"Your mother died, your father drank. You hid in the library to avoid going home."

"What's your point?"

"You gave up on people."

"I have friends!"

"A few. Be generous with your time. Your trust. Make the world happier."

Yeah, right. "Are you about—"

The room was empty.

"—done?" Mozzie trailed off.

He sighed, snapping the lamp off and going back to sleep. An hour later, he woke up again.

Something was wrong.

An older woman wearing a yellow shirt and matching earrings stood over him. Mozzie smelled cigarettes.

"I am the Ghost of yada-yada-yada," the woman said. "Get with the Christmas spirit."

Mozzie blinked.

"I brought cookies. You want 'em?" The woman thrust out a plate.

Mozzie sampled a cookie, nearly breaking a tooth. "Melifouth," he mumbled.

"You're welcome," the woman snapped. "You know, most people aren't lying around expecting Christmas to happen on its own. Some of them do the actual work."

Mozzie suddenly glimpsed Mr. and Mrs. Suit in their living room, finishing the Christmas tree. "They still think you're coming," the woman said.

"They'd be decorating anyway," Mozzie protested.

"That's the laziest excuse I've ever heard. Whatever. I've got a roast in the oven."

The woman and the cookies vanished. The cigarette smell remained.

Mozzie tried to stay awake after that, but failed. When a pretty woman in a sundress woke him up, he was hardly surprised.

"Now what?"

"Other people have problems too," the woman said accusingly.

"I never said they didn't!"

"You think you're the only one with Christmas issues?" She waved her arm, and a tableau of anxious children appeared, their eyes all watching the same door.

"That's the 87th Street orphanage!"

"Where you used to volunteer."

A little boy in the back of the room turned away tearfully.

Mozzie's heart clenched. "I don't even know that kid..."

"That's not the point. Sometimes people lose hope."

"I can't be responsible for other people's hope!"

"But you are," the woman whispered. "Even if you don't know it."

"You've kept me awake all night and shamed me with orphans. What do you people want from me?"

"Were you even listening?" The woman punched his arm.

"Ow! Yes! I meant, why now?"

The woman snorted. "You certainly weren't doing it on your own."

Her words lingered long after she'd left.

The next morning, Mozzie took an early train to Target. He bought several toys, and headed to the orphanage.

"We've missed your visits," Mrs. Ross gushed.

"Me too. And I brought my toolkit, for assembling presents."

Mozzie spent the morning drinking hot chocolate and playing firetrucks with the kids, wondering why he'd stayed away so long. At noon, he went over to the Suits'.

"Mozzie! I'm so glad you could make it," Mrs. Suit said warmly.

Neal cornered him by the eggnog. "'What made you change your mind?"

"I had an epiphany."

"Like what?"

"Like one of those life-changing moments that comes up and slugs you in the arm."

"Huh," Neal blinked. "Well. So, how's your Christmas been?"

Mozzie beamed in spite of himself.

"So far, it's absolutely perfect."


-------- fin --------

 
 
 
oh these heroes come and go;: [white collar] pinky & the brain;;micheleeeex on December 20th, 2010 07:03 pm (UTC)
omg, i love this.
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphors: White Collar- Neal & Peterhalfshellvenus on December 20th, 2010 07:26 pm (UTC)
Thank you!

The prompt absolutely terrified me, but as soon as I thought of having the Burn Notice characters arrive as the ghosts, it all clicked. Mozzie was such an obvious Scrooge choice, though more for the comedy than for any true hardness of heart. He's a softy underneath that cynical exterior. :)
kriadydragon: Cheshire catkriadydragon on December 20th, 2010 10:32 pm (UTC)
That was great :D The Burn Notice gang make the greatest Christmas ghosts. They should terrorize... er... I mean help people like that more often ;)
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphors: White Collar- Neal & Peterhalfshellvenus on December 20th, 2010 10:51 pm (UTC)
The Burn Notice gang make the greatest Christmas ghosts.
They really do, don't they? I couldn't really see the White Collar cast being good ghosts, but the BN people were perfect. That scene between Madeline and Mozzie was what kicked this whole story off, and Sam & Mozzie was the second part. Because darned if they weren't fun to work with. And does Fi ever come through at the end!

What a team they make-- and Madeline pulls her weight and then some when you really need her. \o/
Jonathan Andrew Sheen: White Collarleviathan0999 on December 21st, 2010 12:05 am (UTC)
I have a White Collar icon...
Jonathan Andrew Sheen: Burn Noticeleviathan0999 on December 21st, 2010 12:05 am (UTC)
...and I have a Burn Notice icon...
Jonathan Andrew Sheen: Leviathan meets the Incredible Hulkleviathan0999 on December 21st, 2010 12:06 am (UTC)
But in the face of this magnificence, I am helpless! Great job!
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphors: White Collar- Neal & Peterhalfshellvenus on December 21st, 2010 01:12 am (UTC)
Hahahahaha! I don't have one that adequately covers the combination of the two either. And they worked surprisingly well together for this story-- I don't know how I would have managed it without the crossover.

So glad you enjoyed it. Thank you!
Ursula4xursula4x on December 21st, 2010 04:46 am (UTC)
The best one was Madeline! She always gets the best lines!
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphors: White Collar- Neal & Peterhalfshellvenus on December 21st, 2010 05:08 am (UTC)
She does! And she's who started this whole fic. As soon as I envisioned her as a crossover ghost coming to pester Mozzie (and wrote their scene), the whole thing fell into place.

And god, but her cookies must be deadly, both texturally and otherwise. :D
misura: Burn Notice - three gunsmisura on December 21st, 2010 07:23 am (UTC)
*cackle* Poor Mozzie. Even if, really, people are only trying to help - and I'm sure he won't completely hate spending Christmas with Neal at the Burke household.
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphors: White Collar- Neal & Peterhalfshellvenus on December 22nd, 2010 07:39 am (UTC)
I think he'll wind up having a great time at the Burke's, even if he leaves there still thinking of them as The Suits.

The Suits who serve great food and know how to laugh, and seem to like him even if he wonders why and what they're up to. ;)
oxoniensis: fandom: wc don't feed him after midnightoxoniensis on December 21st, 2010 11:57 pm (UTC)
Hee, I love it! Especially Madeleine - who can stand up against her!
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphors: White Collar- Neal & Peterhalfshellvenus on December 22nd, 2010 07:54 am (UTC)
Thank you!

Madeline is surprisingly fierce. Even Michael is intimidated by her, though who can blame him? :0
Cyanne: White Collar OT3silver_cyanne on December 24th, 2010 02:26 am (UTC)
I have the same problem as leviathan0999 . And I also really love this fic.
Cyanne: Burn Notice Castsilver_cyanne on December 24th, 2010 02:29 am (UTC)
I love how you wrote all the characters, which is a major feat in a crossover like this with so many people, but they were all wonderful.
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphors: White Collar- Neal & Peterhalfshellvenus on February 22nd, 2011 08:26 pm (UTC)
Thank you so much! The hardest part was getting all of this down to the 1000-word limit. The number of characters required for the plot alone pushed this out to about 1250 words on the first draft, and keeping the characterizations obvious to people who know them with so few words is tough. Hence, more dialogue!

Michael is the hardest of the Burn Notice characters for me (and took up the most words), but I think even he came off as himself. Incredibly patient, no matter what, but not forever-- and he'll let you know it.

Thanks so much for reading and commenting! I didn't mean to leave this unnoticed. :0
aliterarymindaliterarymind on February 21st, 2011 06:37 am (UTC)
A Christmas treat in February
So I've been taking the opportunity to catch up on my Burn Notice fic and just ran across this story, which I love. Especially this line:

"You've kept me awake all night and shamed me with orphans. What do you people want from me?"

Yes, Mozzie, you are being shamed with orphans. Shamed, shamed, shamed. No one can withstand the orphans.

Such a cute story.
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphors: Burn Notice Sam&Michaelhalfshellvenus on February 22nd, 2011 08:22 pm (UTC)
Re: A Christmas treat in February
I'm so glad you enjoyed this, and that it's still fun long after Christmas. :D

You're the only one who mentioned that line, but I used it because it seemed so Mozzie. He states it so baldly that his phrasing just sounds wrong and insensitive, and yet that's exactly what he'd do. Which makes it evil-funny.

The Burn Notice characters made such wonderful ghosts for this story. Mozzie made the perfect scrooge (and nobody from Burn Notice was well-suited for that), but the other White Collar characters wouldn't have been terribly good as ghosts (someone wrote the White Collar-only version of this, and someone else the Burn Notice-only version). The combination of the two fandoms for this was pure win, I thought. Especially Sam as the "old colleague" and Madeline as the middle ghost. Her interaction with Mozzie kicked this whole idea off!

Thanks so much for reading and commenting. :)
pipiljpipilj on December 24th, 2013 11:08 am (UTC)
This was lovely
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphors: White Collar- Neal & Peterhalfshellvenus on December 24th, 2013 06:31 pm (UTC)
Thank you!

I wrote it years ago for a challenge, and while Mozzie is perfectly suited to being a Scrooge, the way the Burn Notice characters fit as the ghosts was the biggest surprise. I don't think either show would have worked as well just by itself, and I even avoid crossovers like the plague.

Thanks for reading, and Merry Christmas!