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Title: Taking A Break
By: angstytimelord
Pairing: Hannibal Lecter/Will Graham
Fandom: Hannibal
Rating: PG-13
Author's Note: Sequel to "Burnout."
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.


By the time he arrived in Baltimore, he was angry.

Will had felt that anger simmer within him on the drive from Quantico, and now it was at the boiling point. He knew that he was going to confront Hannibal.

How could the man who claimed to love him have gone behind his back to stop him from working? Didn't he know that inactivity would drive Will insane?

Maybe Hannibal thought that he was pushing himself too hard. That was always a possibility. But on the other hand .... Will gripped the steering wheel as he stopped for a red light, his eyes widening at the thought that had just coalesced into his mind.

Hannibal might have some insight as to why these premonitions of his own death were coming to him -- and he might think that Will taking some time off would make them stop.

But he shook his head as though to clear the thought away, refusing to believe it. If Hannibal had any insight into his problem, he would have said so.

No, there had to be something else going on.

It was almost as though Hannibal wanted to make him pace, climb the walls, keep all of his energy bottled up inside until he exploded.

Will sighed, pressing the gas pedal again when the light turned green. Of course Hannibal didn't want that. But he had to know that work kept him balanced.

Or did it? he asked himself. He was starting to dread going to crime scenes and utilizing his empathic ability; he didn't know when and where he would have one of those terrifying visions again. Sometimes it happened, and then there were times when it didn't.

He was constantly on pins and needles waiting for it to happen again -- and whenever it did, he would feel as though he was fading, or falling apart.

If things kept on like this, he would be in a padded cell wearing a straightjacket before too much longer. And that was one place he definitely did not want to end up.

He turned onto the street the led to Hannibal's home, sighing.

His anger had somehow started to melt away. He couldn't keep it burning for long; whatever Hannibal had told Jack, he was sure that the other man had his best interests at heart. He couldn't believe that Hannibal would do anything that might harm him.

Hannibal simply didn't understand how much his work meant to him, how grounded it kept him. Will would have to explain that to him, in no uncertain terms.

Hannibal would understand. He had to. Will would convince him to go to Jack and say that he'd been wrong, that Will needed to work so he could stay sane.

Or maybe, a small voice piped up in the back of Will's mind, a break was just what he needed. Maybe he needed to distance himself from his work a bit, take some time to relax and push all of the crime scenes, the dead bodies, the criminals and the murders away from him.

He had been focusing on that almost exclusively lately.

But what else did he have to focus on? His work went a long way to defining who he was; it gave him some much-needed stability. Without it, he didn't have much.

Anger rose in him again at the thought of Jack and Hannibal trying to take away that lifeline, to leave him in the dark, uncertain and floundering.

It didn't matter that doing his job brought those premonitions of his death closer to him. It didn't matter that every time he immersed himself in a killer's mind at a crime scene, there was chance that one of those visions would come to him, in crystal-clear, frightening clarity.

What mattered was that he was being pushed in a direction that he didn't want to go, a direction that he was sure wasn't going to be good for him in the long run.

What would be good for him was to keep on doing his job, to keep having those visions, as terrifying as they were, until he had some sort of a breakthrough.

Of course, that breakthrough might never happen.

If he was honest with himself, he had to admit that. He had to acknowledge the fact that those visions might never stop, and that he might never know why they were torturing him.

Could he live with that? Will thought with a sigh. He didn't think so. He had to find out why they were attacking him, and if he was actually seeing his own future.

Or the lack of one, he thought, a wry smile twisting his lips. If those visions were to be believed, then he didn't have much of a future to look forward to. Only a death that would obviously be bloody, and more than likely a painful one that he hadn't seen coming.

Only he did see it coming, didn't he? So he should be able to take steps to avoid it. Maybe getting him away from his work was Hannibal's way of making him do just that.

It was possible that Hannibal thought his death could come about from his work, and the other man was trying t o save him, to make sure that he'd be all right.

Will shrugged at the idea. He supposed that anything was possible.

He wouldn't know Hannibal's motivations, and whether they were something that he would agree with, until the two of them talked all of this over.

Will just hoped that he could manage to keep his temper during that talk. He had never seen Hannibal's bad side, but he was sure that the other man had one; he was positive than when and if Hannibal lost his temper and let himself go, it would be a frightening spectacle.

He didn't want to be on the receiving end of that, he thought with a sigh. Which was why he had to keep his own temper in check, or he very well might be.

He slowed the car as he approached Hannibal's house, taking a deep breath.

This was it, then. He would confront Hannibal with how he felt, and hope that this wouldn't turn into a fight and make the two of them adversaries.

That was one battle that he probably wouldn't be able to win, Will told himself as he got out of the car. He didn't want to discover what that outcome might be.

With slow, measured steps, he approached the house, going up the front steps.

Taking a deep breath, he rang the doorbell, knowing that Hannibal would come to the door sooner or later. Good manners wouldn't let him leave someone just standing here.

Will drew in his breath and closed his eyes for just a moment when he heard footsteps approaching from inside the house. In just a few seconds, Hannibal would open the door.

He hoped that this went well. If it didn't, there would be hell to pay.