Season two ended with a bang, but season three starts with a fast burn as we find Neal and Mozzie furiously loading crates into a small plane, a wail of sirens growing louder as Peter and the collective might of the bureau bears down on them, hell-bent on making sure they don't take off...
But back up four days. Peter is unhappily subjecting Neal to hours of interrogation, looking for any piece of information that will link him to the warehouse explosion in the season 2 finale. What both Peter and Neal don't know is that it was Mozzie who created the explosion and stole the artwork, and who is now planning for he and Neal's ultimate getaway. And while the idea of a final score is just too appealing to turn down, Neal's inner conflict is evident.
But even with Neal and Peter's partnership fraying under the weight of mistrust, business must continue as usual. Their latest case involves David Lawrence, a man who is suspected of stealing 60 million dollars from the Federal Reserve. As it turns out, Lawrence is trying to contact Neal. Well, an alias of Neal's who was known for his smuggling expertise. See, Lawrence was never able to get the money out of the country, and he wants Neal's help to complete his big score. Neal meets with Lawrence and agrees to help him set up the perfect getaway.
Meanwhile, Mozzie and Neal begin to plan their own perfect getaway, but Neal starts to worry that Peter has something up his sleeve. And he does: a swatch of canvas from Neal's painting of the Chrysler Building that Peter found in the warehouse explosion. Peter's not ready to get the FBI involved, not yet, but his suspicions are strong. And when Mozzie learns that Elizabeth is going to get the swatch tested through her old art world contacts, he and Neal realize that the time for their escape may be at hand.