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Pairing: Hannibal Lecter/Will Graham
Prompt: You can't fix me
Author's Note: Sequel to "No Longer A Game."
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.
***How long would he have to wait before Hannibal contacted him again?
Will shuddered at the thought of seeing his nemesis face to face again. It was the last thing he wanted; he wished that he never had to deal with Hannibal for the rest of his life.
Yet a part of him wanted another confrontation between them, a chance to prove that he could take Hannibal on and come out on top.
But could he? He had to ask himself that question; past experience had proven that Hannibal was crafty, wily, and that he wasn't above using underhanded methods to get what he wanted. He wouldn't play fair, and he certainly wouldn't abide by any rules that Will knew of.
No, Hannibal was capable of anything. Will already knew that; he had been a firsthand recipient of that knowledge. Hannibal wasn't to be trusted, not for any reason.
If they did have a final confrontation, there was no way of telling which one of them would walk out of it alive. WIll just didn't want to be the one who lost that final game.
He knew very well that he was fighting for his life.
Hannibal wouldn't let him have that life, not if he could possibly take it. And Hannibal was toying with him, enjoying the chase, the cat-and-mouse game he was playing.
That monster thought that he could take Will's life with one swipe of a paw, but he had another think coming if he really thought that his intended victim would go down without a fight.
Will clenched his fists and gritted his teeth, summoning up all the courage he could muster. Hannibal wasn't going to win this fight easily, he vowed to himself. He wasn't going to simply lay down and die; he was going to fight, and he was going to best that beast and send it to hell, if he could.
He'd had enough of Hannibal influencing his life, muddling his senses and trying to dictate right and wrong to him. He knew the difference between right and wrong.
He had allowed a false friendship to cloud his judgment, but the scales had been ripped away from his eyes long since. He was no longer blinded by Hannibal's persuasiveness.
How had he let himself be fooled by Hannibal's protestations of friendship? He had wanted a friend, needed someone who he felt understood him. But Hannibal had never truly understood who he was, or even tried to. He had only tried to remake Will in his own image.
Hannibal thought that he was some kind of god, Will told himself. But he was only a man, with all the fallibilities of a man -- albeit a wily and cunning one.
This time, he wasn't going to let Hannibal win. He might not come out on top in their final confrontation, but he would put up one hell of a fight.
And he was determined not to lose.
He'd let Hannibal dominated him for far too long. He had fallen under a kind of spell, but he was no longer under any kind of delusion that Hannibal was his friend.
That illusion had been torn to shreds long ago, during the time that he'd spent in prison. He'd come to know the truth, and he had sworn that he would have his revenge.
And he would, he told himself, clenching his fists and feeling his nails dig into his palms. Maybe not revenge, but at least he would get some closure. He would put Hannibal Lecter behind bars, no matter what it took. And he would take satisfaction in knowing that he had done so.
That would be what would destroy Hannibal, more so than anything else. The loss of his freedom. The loss of all that he held dear -- not just his freedom, but his reputation in the world.
Appearances mattered to Hannibal. It would kill him to know that he had become nothing more than a scandalous headline, something for people to whisper behind their hands about.
He would hate that. And Will would know that he had orchestrated it.
Hannibal had thought that he could somehow "fix" him, that he would easily become what Hannibal envisioned for him. But he'd proven the other man wrong.
He had shown Hannibal that he was stronger than he appeared, and he would do it again. Hannibal might have won the last round, but he wouldn't win another one.
"You can't fix me," Will said aloud. "Because there's nothing to be fixed. I'm fine just the way I am. I don't need to be changed into anything, especially into something like you." He shuddered at the thought of becoming like Hannibal; he would rather die than take up the mantle of that monster.
He wasn't a killer. Yes, he had killed -- but he had a conscience. He had killed to protect himself, and in turn, to protect others. He had never killed just for the sake of killing.
His attempt to convince Hannibal that he could be a killer had worked for a while, but he should have known that he wasn't a good enough actor for it to stay convincing.
Yet he still had his life. He'd made it through that harrowing time. That was something.
He didn't need to be fixed -- not in the way that Hannibal thought that he could "fix" him. He was his own person, and he would show that bastard that he couldn't be easily manipulated.
Maybe Hannibal had been able to do that before, but those days were over. Will no longer had the wool pulled over his eyes. He was seeing clearly now.
He wasn't the credulous person that he'd been before he had met Hannibal. He'd thought that he was so cynical, so closed off from the world, but he had needed a friend, someone who he felt that he could trust. And he had picked the wrong person to give his trust to.
But now, he knew better. He knew who and what he was dealing with -- and he knew that he could defeat the evil that was Hannibal, if he worked hard enough at it.
He had spent too much time being Hannibal's victim. Well, he would be a victim no more. He was going to stand up to that bastard, and he was going to send him to jail.
Or straight to hell. Whichever one of those he could manage.
Personally, he'd rather send Hannibal to hell than to jail. Then at least he would know that the bastard couldn't harm anyone else, even from behind bars.
Will took a deep breath, straightening his shoulders. Whatever happened, he would be prepared for it. The next time he and Hannibal met, the playing field would be even.
He expected their next meeting to go very differently from the last.
If it didn't, then he probably wouldn't emerge from that meeting alive.
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