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White Collar Fic: To Fly Again

Title:  To Fly Again
Author: dennih23
Rating: G
Characters: June Ellington, Neal Caffrey
Word Count: 1405
Warning:  AU – Wingfic
Summary:  June meets Neal for the first time
Beta: Thank you sherylyn, all mistakes are mine

A/N: Fills the First Transformation square on my H/C Bingo Card

June pushed the door to the small thrift shop open. Draped over her arm was a garment bag filled with some old suits that had belonged to her late husband, Byron. Immediately, she felt his presence. She scanned the store and easily spotted him. He was young — good-looking with wavy dark hair and bright blue eyes — but at the same time, she could feel his unrest.

She would need to come up with a plan quickly if she wanted to help him. It didn’t take long before she had a possible idea. Looking at him, June realized the young man appeared to be approximately the same build as Byron had been; the suits should fit him perfectly.

As he got closer to the front desk of the store, June made her move. She approached the clerk to donate the clothing. She didn’t want to appear too obvious, afraid that he might leave. She laid the garment bag on the counter and pulled out a Devore suit jacket.

A pleasant smile crossed her face when he showed interest in the vintage attire. June had him try it on; it was a perfect fit. She introduced herself and told him that she had others back at her home. He smiled and flipped one of the hats onto his head, making her laugh.

It didn’t take much to convince Neal to come to her house. Once they were arrived at Riverside Drive, Neal showed her the anklet and told her he was working as a CI for the FBI. She wasn’t too concerned about him being a conman; hell, she’d run enough cons in her lifetime, but all that was behind her now. She was more concerned about his well-being. She offered him a room in her home in exchange for doing odd jobs for her.

He quickly agreed, telling her about the motel room he was assigned to. June showed him the fourth-floor apartment. She asked if he wanted to go get the rest of his belongs, but he shrugged, telling her he didn’t have anything. She showed him the closet filled with Byron’s old clothes and told him to help himself. She left him alone, giving him some space to get acquainted with his new surroundings. She invited him to come down for dinner at seven, pleased when he said yes.

At seven o’clock sharp, he made his way to the dining room where she was waiting for him. The old suits seemed to be made for him; they would only need a few alterations. They ate dinner and talked about some of the ‘alleged cons’ they knew about. Dinner was pleasant and June was happy to have Neal in her home.

After dinner, Neal excused himself and headed back to his room. June settled into the deep burgundy recliner in the study, thinking about her next move. She was concerned about Neal; there was so much stress radiating off him.

June wondered how long she should wait before she approached him about his secret – one she knew he had. After a couple of hours she heard small groans coming from his room and decided now was the best time.

She grabbed a container that she filled with supplies – a nice bottle of red wine, numbing ointment, scissors, and some feather cleaner. June couldn’t fathom how long it must have been since Neal had last spread his wings.

There was no answer when she knocked on the door. She turned the knob and it was unlocked.

“Neal, dear,” she called out, “are you okay?”

A sound came from the balcony and she saw Neal just standing there, head down. She walked over and set the container of items on the table. She wrapped her arms arounds him, giving him a small hug. “Everything will be all right,” she crooned.

“Sorry, June, I’m not very good company tonight.” He gave her a conman smile she saw right through.

She sighed. “Neal, how long has it been since you’ve spread your wings?”

He stared at her, confused. “I don’t understand what you mean.”

“I mean, dear, exactly what I said.” With that, she allowed her own golden wings to unfurl. They glimmered in the moonlight.

Wide-eyed, Neal continued to watch her.

“Neal, it’s okay, I know you have wings.”

He slumped into a chaise recliner. “Had wings.”

She tilted her head in concern. “What do you mean, did someone do something to you?”

“No, it’s just I haven’t been able to use them the last four years because of being in prison. I tried to unfurl them tonight, but it hurt so badly that I couldn’t.”

June leaned down and embraced him. “Let’s see what’s going on. Stand up and take off your shirt.”

She gasped when she saw the red blood that was dripping down his back. She went over to the basket of items she had set on the table.

Digging through the supplies, she pulled out a tube of ointment. “This should help with some of the pain, and then you can try again. I think your muscles are strained due to lack of use it may take a little time, but you’ll be able to fly again soon.”

“Do you think so?” Neal asked, his eyes full of hope. Then he added, “How did you know I had wings?”

“Oh, Neal, a lot of winged-folk can spot another of our kind. It’s kind of a sixth sense we have.”

Neal tilted his head. “But I didn’t know about you?”

“Did you grow up around any other people with wings?”

Neal shook his head no.

“That may be part of the problem. Usually, growing up with others like us, it’s easier to tell another person with wings. You’ll probably learn in time.”

As they were talking, June rubbed some of the salve on Neal’s shoulder’s and upper back. “Now, while that has a chance to work, let’s sit and have a glass of wine and get to know each other.”

Neal beamed as he got up and found some goblets and the opened the bottle of Merlot. He poured them each some of the deep red liquid. They were enjoying the rich flavor and slowly Neal began to talk about his past.

It was close to midnight when she suggested that Neal try and see if he could unfold his wings. This time, with Neal relaxed, and the liniment doing its job, it wasn’t long before gray feathers appeared behind him.

June smiled as Neal realized he still had his plumage. However, he was crestfallen when he saw the condition of the feathers. They drooped and were dull after years of being hidden.

“Oh Neal, don’t be sad. The wings will heal in time. In a couple of weeks, you’ll be soaring. They just need a little TLC. If you let me, I’ll help you get them in shape.”

Neal’s grin almost blinded her.

“I’ll take that as a yes.”

She took the scissors and removed the dead and damaged feathers. Then she took out the cleaner and sprayed the quills. She could see Neal’s attitude changing as the wings started to take shape. It made her grin, thinking back to her own son and daughter when they needed her assistance.

They continued to talk and soon finished off the bottle of wine. It was nearly four AM. They stood overlooking the New York skyline, and Neal tried to flutter his feathers. June could see the surprise on his face as the appendages slowly moved up and down; she knew it wouldn’t be long before he was airborne.

Neal came over and gave her a hug. “Thank you,” he whispered.

She gave him a peck on the cheek. “Now, I think we both better get some rest. Try and get some sleep. I’m sure your FBI handler will be here early.”

June made her way towards the door, looking back before leaving. Neal had managed to get a couple of inches off the ground. She smiled; somehow she knew the young man wouldn’t be getting any sleep.

A few hours later she greeted Special Agent Peter Burke at the door. She smiled; he was definitely surprised at Neal’s new residence. She gave him the once over before allowing him access to Neal’s apartment. June watched as the man disappeared up the stairway. She wondered how long before Neal found out his handler also had wings.

Cross Posted at AO3



( 3 comments — Leave a comment )
Sep. 5th, 2016 03:47 pm (UTC)
Of course this needs a follow-up with Peter. Enjoyed!
Sep. 5th, 2016 07:32 pm (UTC)
Yay!! I love this so much!!
Sep. 11th, 2016 12:50 pm (UTC)
Awww, so sorry for the very late comment. I read this as soon as it was posted but evil work distracted me before I could squee right away, sigh :P

But yay, winged!Neal ♥ I have so much love for anything involving wings and this is such a perfect beautiful fill for the square ♥ I love it how June took care of Neal, made him feel safe and at home ♥

And the fact that Peter has wings too is the most awesome cherry on top, heeeee :D

Yes, I vote sequel as well :D \o/
( 3 comments — Leave a comment )