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Title: Black Sky
Pairing: Hannibal Lecter/Will Graham
Author's Note: Sequel to "Miasma."
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.
***The sky was black today. It suited his mood.
He should feel glad, Will told himself as he slowly sat down on his living room couch. It had been a good day. Hannibal's final sentence had been pronounced. It was over.
The man he'd come to see as nothing but a monster would spend the rest of his life behind bars, without any possibility of seeing the outside world again. He would never have his freedom, and that, for Hannibal, would be a fate worse than death.
But somehow, even though he had won in the end, it felt like a hollow victory. There was really no justice for all those whose lives Hannibal had taken.
They would never have the satisfaction of knowing that their killer was behind bars. They were beyond that now, unknowing as to what had happened after they were dispatched from this realm. Will wished that they had some way of knowing that they'd been avenged.
Or had they? he asked himself. Hannibal still lived and breathed, while they didn't. They would never have the chance to live their lives because of him.
that didn't seem like justice at all. Not in his eyes.
Abigail should have been able to live her life, he thought, tears coming to his eyes. She'd been a teenager, with that life stretching ahead of her. She should have been able to grow up, fall in love, get married, have a family. She should have had a normal life.
Would that ever have happened? he thought bleakly. Or had Garrett Jacob Hobbs destroyed any chance of that long before he'd met Abigail?
He doubted that she would ever have been what the world would call a "normal" girl, but he'd liked for her to have had the chance to try. He'd liked to have seen her grow up into a young woman, to become someone he could have had a lifelong friendship with.
Hannibal had taken that chance away from them both.
And Beverly. There were still times when he wanted to sob at the loss of his friend, the one person who had believed in him when no one else had.
That belief had cost Beverly her life. She had gone to Hannibal's house on that fateful day, looking for proof that Will was innocent. She'd found that proof, and Hannibal had gone to great lengths to make sure that she didn't show it to anyone else.
Hannibal had, as usual, protected himself. That his actions had been one cause of Will getting out of jail, proving that he wasn't the Chesapeake Ripper, had only been a side effect.
Hannibal hadn't given a damn if he was freed or not.
He had only wanted to protect himself, to throw people off his trail, as he'd done so often in the past. That was why Will had been in jail in the first place.
The day that he'd found out about Beverly's death had been a black, rainy day, as well, Will remembered. It had been a day when everything had seemed to close in around him, when he'd felt such a horrible sense of hopelessness that he'd wondered if living was even worth it.
He'd felt so cold on that day. He'd huddled in his jail cell, curled up in a corner of the small bed, wondering if he would ever be able to feel warmth again.
There were still times when he awakened at night with Beverly's face in his mind, feeling guilty that he had been the one to send her to her death.
But he had told her not to go to Hannibal's house alone, and she'd done it anyway. He'd told her to be careful, to watch out for Hannibal, to be cautious. She had thrown caution to the winds, and she had paid for that lack of caution with her life.
If only she had listened to him, been more cautious, then she might well be here now, rather than ending up as a statistic, one of Hannibal's many victims.
But at least her killer was now behind bars, where he belonged.
Hannibal wouldn't hurt anyone again. He had no power now; it had all been taken away from him. He was nothing more than a rat in a cage.
That rat would never find freedom again. He would never know what it was like to walk in the light, without walls and chains and guards around him. He would never take another life, never victimize another person. This time, the good guys had won.
Will took a deep breath, sinking back into the couch cushions and trying to relax. It had been a long day, a day that had been fraught with tension.
In the end, he at least had something of a sense of satisfaction.
At least he knew that he'd been able to stop Hannibal from hurting any other people, that he'd been one of the people who was instrumental in being sure that monster was kept behind bars for the rest of his life. That was something, at least.
But he wanted more. He wanted Hannibal to know the dread, the horror and fear, that his victims must have felt when he was dispatching their lives.
He wanted Hannibal to suffer, as Beverly and Abigail must have suffered. He wanted that hideous, horrible, worthless monster to know just what it was to feel pain, to feel horror, to feel the hopelessness of knowing that his life was virtually over.
He wanted Hannibal's life to be over.
Putting him in jail didn't seem like nearly enough of a payback, not after all the lives he had taken, after all the misery he had caused so many people.
There were so many families who had lost loved ones due to Hannibal's atrocities, so many people whose lives had been shattered. They could never get back those who they had loved; they could never feel that justice had truly been served as long as Hannibal lived.
That bastard was still breathing, when so many who hadn't deserved to die were dead by his hand. That didn't seem like justice to Will at all.
The sky had been bleak and cloudy when he'd come out of the courthouse, intermittently spitting rain down on the pavement. He'd walked to his car in a daze, driven home with images from the trial still spinning in his head, and his thoughts a jumbled tangle.
He still wasn't sure just how he felt. Yes, there had been some semblance of justice done today. At least now Hannibal was behind bars for good.
That had to count for something, even if it didn't feel like much of an ending.
Will let his breath out slowly, trying to feel as though a victory had been scored today. In a way, it was a victory. But in his heart, it wasn't enough.
It had to be enough, at least for now. He had the satisfaction of knowing that Hannibal Lecter would grow old behind bars. But the people whose lives he'd so callously and brutally ended would never grow old. They would never be able to live their lives through.
That was a tragedy, in every way. So the black sky that hovered over them today suited his mood, as well as feeling like a fitting backdrop to all that had happened.
Will wondered if the sky would ever look blue and cloudless again.
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