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Title: Advance Warning
Pairing: Hannibal Lecter/Will Graham
Author's Note: Sequel to "No Answers."
Disclaimer: This is entirely a product of my own imagination, and I make no profit from it. I do not own the lovely Hannibal Lecter or Will Graham, unfortunately, just borrowing them for a while. Please do not sue.
***"He broke into my house, Jack. Into my home."
Will sighed heavily, resting his head in one hand. He felt like a wrung-out washrag; it felt as though his bones were caving in. It was almost too hard to raise his head to look at Jack.
"You didn't have any kind of advance warning that he might try something like this? He didn't give you any sort of clue at all?" Jack leaned forward, his gaze concentrated on Will.
Will shook his head, sighing again. "None, Jack. You know how he is. He's sneaky and underhanded. I don't have any idea where he is, or what he's doing, or even why he's decided to torment me. I'd have thought that he'd taken his pound of flesh, and that he'd be satisfied with that."
"He took considerably more than a pound," Jack murmured under his breath. Will wondered if he was meant to hear those words, but he didn't comment on them.
"If I'd known that he intended to break into my house, then I'd have gone out of my way to be there -- and be ready for him," Will said, his voice rising. "Don't you think I'd be smart enough to do that?"
Jack nodded, holding up a hand to halt any further words.
"Of course I do, Will," he answered, his voice soft. "And I don't know why he's targeting you, either. Other than the fact that he's got some kind of weird obsession with you."
Will wondered if that obsession had been there all along, and he'd just been too blind to see it. Had Hannibal developed this fixation over time, or had it started when they had first met?
He could remember every moment of that first meeting, etched on his brain with crystal clarity. As much as he thought about it, he couldn't pick out any one thing that he had said or done that might have given Hannibal this mad obsession. But then, there was no way to tell.
Hannibal's mind didn't work like anyone else's. It was a twisted labyrinth of passages that WIll knew he could never hope to navigate, and he didn't even want to attempt it.
Whatever had made Hannibal develop such an obsession with him, it was far too late to repair the damage done. He couldn't turn back the clock and undo that fixation.
There had been no advance warning that Hannibal might fixate on him. He would never have thought that he would become such an object of obsession for a man like Hannibal. He'd have expected Hannibal to overlook him, to think that he was nothing, a nobody.
But somehow, that hadn't happened, and Hannibal had gone in the other direction instead. Will wished with all his heart that it hadn't happened, that he had managed to stay unobtrusively in the background.
It was too late to wish that now. Too many things had happened, and he was solidly in Hannibal's sights now. He had been ever since that fateful first meeting.
What was it about him that intrigued the other man so much?
He didn't think it was just his empathy, though that was a big part of it, he was sure. Since Hannibal couldn't feel that kind of empathy himself, he was fascinated by Will's ability.
Will shook his head, closing his eyes. He didn't want to muse on what Hannibal's reasons were for his obsession. It was bad enough that it existed -- and that he was its focus.
If he'd had some kind of advance warning that Hannibal was going to obsess over him, would he have backed away? Would he have found some way to tell Jack that Hannibal gave him the creeps, that he had a strange feeling about him, and tried to make Jack understand that he felt Hannibal was dangerous?
He honestly didn't think that he would have. He'd have been just as intrigued by Hannibal as the other man was by him -- and their dance around insanity would have begun.
It had been inevitable that the two of them meet, and that they end up on opposite sides of the fence. It was their destiny; he couldn't doubt that. Not after the way it had all played out.
This was how their lives had been meant to entwine.
He had always been intended to be Hannibal's bane. Somehow, he would stop his nemesis, no matter what he might have to do, what sacrifices he might have to make.
Just as he'd had no advance warning that Hannibal would develop an obsession about him, he wouldn't give his nemesis any warning when he backed him into a corner, either.
He would make sure that Hannibal had nowhere to turn, nowhere to run. He would hunt hs enemy to ground like a hound after a fox; he wouldn't give up until he had achieved his objective. He might have to make sacrifices, but they would be worth it to see Hannibal behind bars permanently.
"I didn't have any advance warning, and neither will he when we come for him," he told Jack, his voice barely above a whisper. "He won't know what's hit him."
Jack nodded, studying Will closely. "Look out, Will. This could become as much an obsession for you as you've become for Hannibal. That could be very dangerous."
Will wanted to shake his head, but he knew that it was true.
But there was one thing that Jack hadn't thought of. He could also be very dangerous for Hannibal. The next time they met, he wouldn't be unprepared for the confrontation.
He would be Hannibal's bane, Will told himself firmly. The next time they met face to face, things would be different. It would be their last showdown -- and it was one that he fully intended to win.
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