Scrolling through my dash and Neal Caffery came up so my brain went well, guess you’re having White Collar AU thoughts now.
I’m imagining a world where Dirk Gently is a criminal informant for FBI Special Agent Farah, who successfully tested into the FBI on her first try and ended up as head of the Seattle White Collar Division at the ripe young age of thirty. She’s got a string of arrests under her belt and her team both respect and fear her with equal intensity, her superiors keep making vague noises about moving her up the chain of command but she’s very much okay staying where she is, thank you but no thank you, she’s here to make a difference and that’s what she intends to do. She wasn’t heavily involved in the case that put Dirk behind bars four years ago (it was mainly a CIA affair, he’d steadfastly maintained his innocence right through the trial and sentencing until the very last minute, she remembers his face when the judge pronounced him guilty and it still haunts her sometimes) but she’s familiar enough with the details that the authorities feel comfortable calling her when Dirk goes missing from his jail cell with only three months left to serve on his sentence.
She ends up finding him in the woods, fifty miles from the supermax prison where he was being held. He’s vaguely confused about why she’s there but he’s adamant that it was just a misunderstanding, he opened the wrong door and got lost in the woods, he ended up where he needed to be despite the fact that it really wasn’t where he intended to go.
“Dirk, it took you an entire day to walk here”.
“There’s a barricade along the road Farah, I honestly didn’t even notice that I’d left the prison”.
So she goes to take him back to his cell (she calls her boss on speakerphone to update him, Dirk uses it as an opportunity to ask weird and personal questions until Farah threatens to put him in the boot of the car) but then Dirk’s yelling that they need to pull over, they need to pull over right that very second. Farah does, and they end up stumbling over a box containing the very evidence that the FBI needed to close a particular case that has been stumping Farah for months.
Dirk mutters something about having a hunch, that’s all, and suddenly Farah is inspired. He doesn’t deserve another four years in a cold lonely cell, he’s a lot paler and thinner than last time she saw him, and he looks bloody awful in his orange jumpsuit (she can’t work out why no-one called the authorities about a dude in prison garb wandering down a major Washington State highway, she’d think that the universe wanted him to escape only that would be ridiculous).
He’s not a huge fan of the ankle monitor but he’ll take what he can get.
For the first couple of months their interactions are generally Farah asking “how could you possibly know this detail about this crime we’re
solving, why do you have connections to the city’s biggest crime
syndicate, why do you own all these missing goods?“
and Dirk avoiding all questions with “I have the right to remain silent”
(and occasionally “please can I go back to my cell now, there was less murder there”). The CIA keep trying to headhunt him and Farah joked about it once until she saw that he’d gone white as a sheet (she makes a note to look into it later, but they’re snowed under with cases and she never quite finds the time).
Farah’s team end up doing a bit of work with the local Missing Persons unit, she keeps trying to Estevez for the FBI but Estevez just wants to find missing people. It turns into a running joke every time they see each other. Farah surreptitiously pins FBI badges on Estevez’s jacket while he’s not wearing it. Estevez refusing to bring her coffee in the morning because the FBI has a budget double that of Missing Persons, she can buy her own damn coffee if she needs caffeine that much. Zimmerfield used to do The Eyebrows™ on rare occasions but it turns into a weekly occurence once they start working with Dirk on cases.
The Rowdy 3 are a vigilante gang that aren’t even under Farah’s jurisdiction (she does white collar cases, not these-dudes-trashed-a-laundromat-that-ended-up-being-a-front-for-literal-Nazis cases) but they somehow keep getting away, and even manage to acquire another member in the shape of a tiny brunette in a too-big leather jacket (Farah’s traitorous mind keeps going to call her adorable, she’s not adorable, Farah is a Special Agent and Special Agents do not use words like adorable to describe violent anarchist ex-drummer punks). But she does her research and then she realizes.
Amanda’s last name is Brotzman.
Farah’s heard the name before and it worries at her for ages until she works out where exactly she’d heard it. It was during Dirk’s trial four years ago, something about a guy that Dirk had been supposedly working with (Todd? Tim? Ted?) who they’d thought might have been involved in the case until Dirk turned around at the last minute and said that the whole thing was him, absolutely just him, no involvement from anyone else, how dare they even suggest it. Dirk’s complete about-face had seemed weird at the time but Farah hadn’t questioned it, it wouldn’t be the first time that a suspect cracked under the pressure of a high-intensity high-profile trial. Now she thinks that it might have been motivated by a desire to protect someone else (it would be a quintessentially Dirk thing to do and Farah’s heart aches for him).
Eventually she ends up discovering that Dirk was set up by the CIA. A special branch (she discovers it’s name, Blackwing, but not what it was set up to do) had requested (dictated commanded forced) Dirk’s involvement with some pretty shady activities and Dirk had complied, not realizing the extent of what he was being asked to do. When he eventually tried to escape, the CIA pinned the whole thing on him and left him to rot in a supermax prison cell until Dirk somehow had a hunch that they were going after Todd.
And Farah is pissed.