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White Collar Fic: Pearly Gates

Title:  Pearly Gates
Author:  dennih23
Rating:  G
Characters: Peter, Neal and ensemble
Word Count:  3197
Summary:  Neal is a fallen angel, Peter his guardian
Disclaimer:  Not mine, all characters belong to USA and Jeff Eastin

Beta: Thank you sholio for the beta and leading me in the right direction. As always all mistakes belong to me.

A/N: Inspired by the lovely artwork by kanarek13 that can be found here. She also made the spectacular cover art.

Also for the AU: Supernatural Square on my Trope Bingo Card


Peter stood, hands on hips, in front of the latest group of recruits. He was currently lecturing about the responsibilities of being a guardian angel. The group was listening intently to what he was telling them. After many years of helping the living it was now his job to select and train new angels. He loved being able to guide these divine entities and assist them when necessary.

Without warning Peter cringed and shook himself. The hairs on the back of his neck stood. Something was terribly wrong. The door to the classroom opened and Bancroft, the head of all the guardian angels, walked in. He gave Peter the dreaded two finger point. Peter excused himself and followed him out into the hallway.

Bancroft frowned, shaking his head. "Peter, we have a problem."

"It's Caffrey, isn't it."

Bancroft exhaled deeply and ran his hands down his face. "He revealed himself as an angel."

"Sir, I'm .."

Bancroft held up his hand and cut him off. "No Peter, you can't protect him this time. I know you took a liking to him, but he's been trouble since the day you choose him as a guardian angel. This time he went too far, he will not be able to return to us."

Peter could only nod, dumbfounded by what Neal had done. He went back to his teachings but couldn’t concentrate. All he could think about was Neal. Finally he gave up and dismissed his students.

Pinching the bridge of his nose, he began pacing back and forth. This didn’t make any sense, Neal would never just show himself as an angel. It was reckless and dangerous. Something else had to have happened. Stopping mid step, he made his decision; he was heading to earth to find Neal and bring him back no matter what. He knew the odds, this would probably backfire and neither of them would be allowed back through the Pearly Gates.

He went to find El, his best friend and wife when he had been earth bound, and tell her what he was planning to do. He found her talking to two of his assistants, Diana and Jones. El took his hand. "You're going to go after him." It wasn’t a question.

"Bad news seems to travel fast. I have to, this is all my fault. It hasn't been easy for him and I was afraid that he would take this case personally. This child reminded him too much of himself. I blame myself for handing over this assignment to him. I have to try and get him back." He dropped his head he couldn’t look her in the eyes.

El tenderly cupped his face. "You go bring him back and we'll take care of things here." Diana and Jones both nodded in agreement.

"Thank you, all of you."

Diana spoke, "How are you going to find him? He could be anywhere."

"I know exactly where he is, I can feel him." Peter centered himself and focused on only Neal, only to hear Neal screaming. In his mind he called out to Neal, "Where are you?" and disappeared.


Peter was surprised to find himself in the desert. Between the hot air and dust blowing everywhere it was impossible to see more than a few yards ahead. He was in human form now and needed to keep his wings hidden, furled against his body. He would need all his strength to get them both back. He knew the dangers of taking this appearance. He was now vulnerable to all its frailties. The longer he stayed this way the more difficult it would be to change back.

He turned east and started walking. He pulled his shirt up, covering his face to protect him from the harsh elements. With each step he took guilt ate away at him. Peter knew he was emotionally attached to Neal. He couldn’t explain it, maybe Caffrey had charmed him. Peter knew down deep that Neal tried to do what was best, but sometimes his old con man ways took over. Neal was constantly stretching the boundaries of his angelic duties to protect his charges.

He wished he hadn’t given this assignment to Neal. It was too close to Neal’s own background, but that’s exactly why he gave the task to Neal. He thought Neal would best understand the situation. Neal grew up thinking his father was a hero only to find out that the man was corrupt. When Neal found out the truth he was devastated and turned to a life of crime.

Peter continued hiking, the dust clinging to him. His shirt stuck to him and beads of sweat ran down his face. He was drained when he noticed the billowing smoke off in the distance. Metal glinted in the sun and he sprinted in that direction. He stopped short upon reaching the overturned sedan which was teetering on its roof. Cautiously he approached the car scanning for it any signs of life.

Neal’s lifeless body lay next to the twisted steel. Peter raced over to Neal and dropped to his knees. There was a large gash across Neal’s forehead and blood was clotted along the hairline. His shirt was torn open and a large bruise was visible along his left side. Peter gingerly ran his hands down Neal’s body searching for other injuries. He was pretty sure there were broken ribs and internal bleeding.

Neal moaned and shifted, Peter catching a glimpse of Neal’s once glimmering wings. He shook his head, he was too late. Neal’s wings were coal black – he was almost human again.  Peter choked back a sigh. When an angel fell from grace his wings would turn black, then fall out, leaving them mortal. There was little hope of getting Neal back. Neal would be lost forever. Neal would be destined to live out his life on earth and upon death this time there would be no heaven, only the void.

A small voice startled him, “Leave him alone Mister.”

Peter jerked his head up to see a little girl with big blue eyes staring back at him.  The child was standing a few feet away but looked skittish, ready to bolt if he moved quickly. He put up his hands showing her there was nothing to be afraid of. He smiled, “It’s okay Danni, I’m Neal’s friend. I’m here to help.”

She gave him the stink-eye. She was obviously trying to figure out if he could be trusted. Finally she took a couple of steps forward. “Are you an angel too?”

He didn’t answer, but instead asked, “Are you okay?” She appeared to be dirty but in good condition. “What happened Danni, where’s your dad?”

She started to tremble and blurted out, “I don’t know where my dad is. A woman took me. She said she was my mom. I didn’t like her.” Now tears were running down her face. “Neal found me and was trying to get me home when another car ran into us. I snuck out and hid.” She moved forward a little, “Is he going to be okay?”

Neal stirred next to him. “Peter?”

“I’m here Neal.” He wrapped Neal's hand in his own.

Neal pulled away from Peter. “You can’t be, no, you need to leave now.” Neal struggled to sit up and coughed. Blood dripped down his chin and Peter reached out cleaning it away.

“Don’t move, you’re injured.”

“Peter, you need to go before” Neal left the sentence hanging open. “I’m sorry Peter, I couldn’t let Rachel take Danni.”

Peter knew Danni’s story. Her mother disappeared five years ago. Her mother Rachel was a rogue MI5 agent, an assassin for hire. The woman came back and must have kidnapped her own daughter. Now he understood what Neal had done.

Neal looked at Peter with unshed tears in his eyes. He pleaded, “Please Peter, keep Danni safe. I failed. You need to protect her.”

“Of course, I’ll take care of her.” Peter laid his hand on Neal’s chest holding him down. “Now you need to stop moving.” Neal settled down and closed his eyes.

Peter had no idea what he was going to do. He sat there mindlessly drawing circles in the dirt. If he transported himself and Danni back to her father he might not be able to get back to Neal. The task would leave him weak and if he did make it back in time he probably wouldn’t be able to get them back to heaven. If he followed Neal’s wishes it would mean sacrificing Neal. He hung his head in deep thought.

“Peter,” Neal’s voice was barely a whisper, “I know what you’re thinking. You can’t save both of us. You need to get Danni to safety. Don’t let my mistake affect her.” Neal grunted, his hand clenching his side. With pain filled eyes he stared at Peter. “Peter, I’d only leave again if you took me back to heaven. I can’t let Danni be disappointed by her mother’s actions. I know what that feels like.”

Peter bowed, “If you agree to rest I’ll take her home.”

Neal folded into himself and closed his eyes. Peter took that as a yes.

He called the little girl over, “Hey Danni, it’s time to take you home. Close your eyes and think really hard about your dad.” 

Danni closed her eyes, and Peter transported them back to New York. He made sure they arrived one block away from her home. He couldn’t take any chances that someone would see them pop up out of thin air.

Danni's small fingers wrapped around his as they walked towards her home. When she saw her dad she broke away from Peter and ran to her father. Police and FBI agents alike approached him and Peter could see the questioning looks.

A female agent charged over and introduced herself, “Sir, I’m Agent Rice. I want to thank you for bringing Danni home. Now I just have a few questions and you can be on your way. If you’ll just come down to FBI headquarters it shouldn’t take too long.” Peter hesitated, he needed to get back to Neal.

"Please sir, this will only take a little while."

"I really need to get back to my friend, he was injured.

"Sir, we really need you to answer our questions and then you can get back to your friend."

This was a waste of time. He needed to get to Neal now. He sighed, "Couldn't we just do this here?"

"Okay, let's have a seat in my car, we can talk there." She attempted to lead Peter over to her black SUV but he pulled back.

"No, we can do this right here."

She looked surprised at his reluctance. "Sir, is there a problem?"

"No problem and please call me Peter. Like I said my friend was hurt and I'm very concerned about him."

"Okay, let's see if we can get this done quickly."

Peter nodded, all the while tapping his foot against the ground.

"Your name sir."

"Peter Burke."

"Your address please."

Peter paused, "Um, let's just say I move around a lot."

Agent Rice gave him a sideways look, "You don't have a home address?"

"I like to keep traveling."

She took a step toward him, moving into his personal space. "Alright, you have no permanent residence. How about a phone number where I can reach you?"

Peter's head dropped, this was not going well. "No, I have do not have a cell phone."

“Look Mr. Burke, I need you to cooperate with me.”

Peter ran his hand down his face. “Agent Rice, I know you’re only trying to do your job so I’ll tell you whatever I can.”

She let out a deep breathe. “Alright Peter, how did you happen to find Danni?”

“My friend, Neal, is the one who rescued her. I’m not sure where or how. He was injured and asked me to get her home.”

“Does your friend have an address or phone number?”

Peter shook his head, “Sorry.”

Agent Rice was visibly frustrated. “Did you see who took Danni?”

“I didn’t, but Danni told me a woman claiming to be her mother took her. She also told me Neal rescued her.”

“If you knew she was kidnapped why didn’t you call the FBI when you rescued her?

Peter shrugged, he had no answer for her.

With that Agent Rice started over, asking him the same questions. He gave her the same answers, over and over again.

Peter finally had enough and glared at the FBI agent in front of him. “Look we’ve gone over this. Nothing has changed. Now I really need to leave. I need to check on my friend.”

He could tell she was about to argue with him when Danni came running over to them. She was dragging her father with her. “Daddy come meet Peter, he’s an angel, just like Neal.”

Her father extended his hand. “So you’re one of the men who rescued my little girl. I want to thank you for everything.”

“Not a problem sir, you have a wonderful daughter.”

Agent Rice looked down at the little girl. “Danni, why do you think their angels?”

“They are angels. Neal had big black wings. He found me. Then he took me away from the bad men and woman.  We flew out the window and then he put me in the car. He was bringing me home when another car ran into us.”

Peter seized the opportunity. All the adults we looking at Danni. Peter smiled, gave a little wave to Danni, and disappeared.


It was dusk when he arrived back in the desert. His transference back left him weak and he proceeded to fall flat on the ground. He looked up to see an old rusted out pickup next to Neal. A woman was standing over Neal, her foot planted on his throat. He could see Neal struggling. Rachel had found him.

Slowly he crawled towards them. Rachel hadn’t noticed him and he moved with care trying to creep towards the truck, staying out of her line of vision.

Rachel was shouting at Neal, anger filling her voice. “Where is my daughter?” She removed her foot from his throat and kicked him in the ribs.

Neal curled up in a fetal position and cried out, “I don’t know where she is. Even if I did I’d never tell you.”

Rachel continued to kick Neal. Her voice venomous, “We’ll see about that.”

Peter’s anger rose. He found a rock laying on the ground and crept up on her. He gathered all his strength, raised the stone and brought it down on her skull. She immediately dropped to the ground. He found some rope inside the truck and quickly tied her up so she wouldn’t get away. He would finish dealing with her later. Now he needed to take care of Neal.

He rushed to his friend's side. Neal was having difficulty breathing and his feathers lay scattered in the desert sand. Peter knelt down and touched Neal’s forehead. Heat radiated off Neal and his teeth were chattering in the cool evening air.

Peter didn’t have the strength left to get both of them back to heaven, but he couldn’t, no wouldn’t, leave Neal alone. All he could do now was make Neal as comfortable as possible.

He laid down next to Neal, pulling him close. He spread his wings and covered Neal to help keep him warm. He was not surprised to see his own wings were beginning to turn grey. Neal stirred and opened his eyes. “Is Danni okay?”

“She’s fine, now sleep.”

“Thank you Peter, for everything. You always had faith in me, even when I was bending the rules.”

Peter pulled Neal even closer. There were no words left to say. He just held his friend. He had failed, he was going to lose Neal. As exhaustion overwhelmed him he looked skyward and murmured, “Please”, before passing out.

He woke to someone tenderly shaking his shoulder. He opened his eyes, blinking at the sight before him. “El?”

“We came to help.” She stepped back revealing Diana, Jones, his mentor Hughes, and Neal’s weird little friend Mozzie circling them. El looked past him to Neal, “How is he?”

Peter pulled back his wings. There was a collective gasp as they saw the black feathers peppering the ground around them. Neal’s feathers were mostly gone now.

Hughes took charge. “We need to get back now if there is any chance to save him. Peter, can you fly?”

“If someone can help me I think so.” He stole a glance in the direction of Rachel. “What do we do about her?”

Mozzie grinned. “Don’t worry, I’ll make sure she’s taken care of. She won't be bothering Danni anymore.”

Peter moaned, “Do I want to know what you’re planning on doing?”

Mozzie tilted his head, “If you must know, I’m going to make sure the FBI find her.” Than barely audible he added, “And I will make sure she has no memory of her daughter.”

Peter shuddered. “Let’s get out of here.” He was not going to ask how Mozzie planned on erasing Rachel's memory.

Diana and El helped Peter to his feet while Jones and Hughes picked up Neal.

Peter hobbled over to them, he was still weak, but he needed to do this. “Please, let me take him.”

A few more black feathers floated to the ground as they lifted Neal into Peter’s outstretched arms. Tears ran downs his cheeks as he cradled Neal against his body. Neal’s eyes fluttered but didn’t open. Peter softly spoke, “It’s okay Neal, I’ve got you.” Then with the help of his friends they ascended back to heaven.

Bancroft was waiting at the Pearly Gates for them. He had a stern look on his face and his hands planted on his hips. “I should really punish all of you.” Then his face softened, “But it looks like we have an angel to save.”

Over the next few days Peter kept a silent vigil over Neal. He watched as the dark wings regained their splendor, slowing becoming white again. He held Neal’s hand as Neal dealt with the pain as new appendages began to appear. With each passing day Neal was getting stronger.

Neal gradually regained consciousness and became aware of his surroundings.

Neal spotted Peter sitting next to him. “I don’t understand, are we back in heaven?”

Peter smiled.

“But how? Wait, what about Danni?” Neal started to sit up.

Peter gently pressed Neal back down. “You need to rest. Danni is fine, she’s with her dad.”

“But what about Rachel?”

Peter tilted his head and shrugged, “Let’s just say Rachel is no longer an issue.”

Neal beamed, “What did you do?”

Peter patted Neal’s shoulder. “I’ll tell you later, but you need to rest. Danni’s going to be needing a strong guardian angel as she grows up.” Peter winked, “She takes up extreme sports. I should be going now but I’ll be back later.”

Neal grabbed Peter’s arm, “Thank you for finding me.”

Peter squeezed Neal’s shoulder, “I’ll always find you."

Crossposted at: http://archiveofourown.org/works/1643591


( 10 comments — Leave a comment )
May. 16th, 2014 10:34 pm (UTC)
Such a lovely fic!!
May. 17th, 2014 10:28 am (UTC)
Thank you.
May. 17th, 2014 01:05 pm (UTC)
this was sweet. it had such a great ending. thank you.
and kanarek13 created a beautiful work.

Edited at 2014-05-17 01:07 pm (UTC)
May. 17th, 2014 02:19 pm (UTC)
Thank you - I'm glad you enjoyed the story. kanarek13 always has such wonderful artwork!
May. 17th, 2014 01:52 pm (UTC)
I've already shared my squee with you in emails but there's never too much squee :D

Thanks again for writing this and indulging my small obsession with winged boys :D :D It is such a lovely story, with perfect ending and a glorious amount of Neal!whump along the way :D That's THE perfect mixture in my book, heee :D

Thanks again :D
May. 17th, 2014 02:33 pm (UTC)
Thank you for the wonderful artwork that inspired the idea. I feel especially lucky to have the cover art you made!

So glad you enjoyed this :D
May. 17th, 2014 02:19 pm (UTC)
Lovely story. Angel Peter to the rescue, hurt Neal. Loved and intrigued by angel mozzie in yur story
May. 17th, 2014 02:47 pm (UTC)
Thank you – I think Angel Peter will always be watching out for Angel Neal. And I’m pretty sure Mozzie will always have a little bit of a sneaky side to him – and I’m sure Peter doesn’t want to know what Mozzie is up to :D
May. 20th, 2014 01:53 am (UTC)
I adored this story! Our boys united together against a common enemy. Protective Peter and sacrificial Neal... It hit all the buttons. Thanks!!!
May. 20th, 2014 10:55 am (UTC)
Thanks for reading and commenting! I love how protective Peter always is when it comes to his family and friends.
( 10 comments — Leave a comment )