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Title: Distracted
By: angstytimelord
Pairing: Hannibal Lecter/Will Graham
Fandom: Hannibal
Rating: PG-13
Table: Who Said What Now, tv_universe
Prompt: "Work, brain, work!" -- Xander Harris, Buffy the Vampire Slayer
Author's Note: One-shot.
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.


Will looked down at the body in front of him, feeling frustration sweep over him. This hadn't been done by the Chesapeake Ripper. He was sure of it; No, this was another killer, who was much more brutal and much less refined than the Ripper.

He hated to call a murderer refined, but that was what this killer was. He was careful, meticulous, and almost artistic in his murders.

He was certainly imaginative, as well.

Will winced at that thought; it almost seemed as if he was giving the killer a reluctant kind of admiration to admit those things, even to himself. He didn't want to think that this man was anything but what he was -- a cold-blooded murderer who had to be stopped.

More and more often lately, he was doubting his own ability to do that, or even to aid in stopping the Ripper. It had become harder and harder to use his empathic gifts; it was as though he was always distracted, other thoughts in his mind when it should be clear.

He didn't know where those thoughts were coming from, and why they should enter his mind when he was working. But he knew who they came from.

He had never had trouble concentrating on the cases before he'd met Hannibal.

Hannibal filled his life, his thoughts, his every waking moment. The man was even stealing into his dreams; he had awakened more than once in the last couple of weeks in a cold sweat, surprised to find himself alone -- and fully clothed -- in his own bed.

He'd felt disappointed beyond measure to realize that he was alone, that the erotic dream he'd been having about Hannibal had been nothing more than a dream, a wisp of ephemera that dissipated when he awoke. He wanted more than anything for those dreams to come true.

Now he was even carrying those dreams into his working hours. Hannibal was always there in the back of his mind, like a specter he couldn't shake off.

This definitely wasn't good. He needed to concentrate on his work, not on the man who filled his mind during both his waking and sleeping hours. The problem was that he didn't know how to tear his thought away from Hannibal. He simply couldn't turn his mind off.

Will took a deep breath, closing his eyes and trying to relax.

He immediately regretted the deep breath; for just a moment, he'd forgotten that he was in a room with a dead body. The coppery smell of blood permeated the air; Will had to swallow hard and back away from the corpse before he could look at it again.

"Work, brain, work," he whispered, wishing that he didn't feel so fuzzy and disoriented all of a sudden. Why was he feeling this way? He'd seen much worse during his work with the FBI; this corpse was nothing new to him.

When he looked back down at the body, his eyes widened, and he had to stifle a gasp. Will looked away quickly, blinking, pressing a hand against his chest.

For a moment, just one split second in time, he had seen that corpse wearing his face.

Will took another deep breath, trying not to pay attention to the choking scent of blood in the air. He looked at the corpse again, forcing himself to focus on the face. This time, it wasn't his face he was looking at -- but for that moment in time, it had been.

What was wrong with him? Why was he having such frightening visions? Was it because he couldn't get Hannibal out of his mind? Was he starting to slip, starting to prove the naysayers who claimed that he wasn't cut out for this work to be right?

He couldn't let himself do that. He was capable of helping a lot of people by what he did; he couldn't let that go. He couldn't let himself fall victim to delusions.

He hadn't gotten much sleep last night; maybe that was the problem. Maybe he just needed to take better care of himself, and get more rest. If he did that, then he'd probably be a lot healthier and feel a lot better -- as well as being able to do his job more efficiently.

Maybe all he needed was to finally be in Hannibal's bed.

If they slept together, then he could get those crazy dreams out of his head; he would know what it was like to be with another man -- namely Hannibal -- and the idea of it actually happening would cease to exert such fascination over him.

He had to get that yearning for Hannibal out of his system once and for all. It was too distracting; if this kept on, then he wouldn't be able to do his job properly, and he wouldn't be much good to anybody. If this kept on, he probably wouldn't even have a job.

Well, he could still teach. But after what he was doing now, that would seem like cold comfort. It would be an empty existence where he didn't feel that he was accomplishing much of anything.

If he kept being this distracted, then Jack would kick him off the team. In some ways, that might be a relief; he wouldn't have to deal with the stress of getting inside killers' minds any longer. But he knew that if he left this job, something vital would be missing from his life.

He couldn't let his personal life get in the way of his professional one.

Closing his eyes, he tried to center himself, to let his empathic abilities take over. He had to push thoughts of Hannibal out of his mind; this wasn't the time for them, and they wouldn't do him any good here.

Images were starting to run through his mind, like a flickering film that only he was watching. His brain was finally working in the way it was supposed to; now all he had to do was keep hismelf focused on his work. That shouldn't be too hard to do.

That image of himself as the victim was something he would have to discuss with Hannibal later; he couldn't talk about it with Jack, or anyone else he worked with. They would think that his ability had finally pushed him over the edge, and they might possibly be right.

But he wasn't going to tell them that.

He would keep that bit of information to himself, and discuss it with his psychiatrist when he showed up at Hannibal's home for their session tonight. He needed to talk about that disturbing vision, and Hannibal was the only person he could really talk to.

For the moment, at least he didn't feel so distracted any more, and he would be able to get down to work. He only hoped that it wouldn't turn out to be too little, too late.