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Title: Missing Pieces
By: angstytimelord
Pairing: Hannibal Lecter/Will Graham
Fandom: Hannibal
Rating: PG-13
Table: writers_choice
Prompt: #164, Images on a roll of film
Author's Note: Sequel to "Imperfect Memory."
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.


These gaps in his memory were so irritating, Will thought with a frown as he lay in bed, staring up at the ceiling and sighing softly with frustration.

No, they weren't just irritating, they were downright maddening. He would feel that he had a memory just at his fingertips, he would strain to bring it into focus, and then it would slip away, just when he had been on the very verge of grasping it and bringing it out into the light.

It was like seeing images on film, clicking past before his eyes, vague and blurry images that he couldn't quite bring into focus in the brief glimpse he had of them.

Had anything ever been so annoying? Will didn't think so. It was driving him crazy, trying to bring all of those images into focus and put them into some kind of coherent order. His mind was scrambling this way and that, unsure of which direction to take.

He needed to bring those vague images into focus, to place them in his memory, to have them go sharp and clear so he could view them properly.

And he was afraid that would never happen.

He needed for those images to fall into place; if they didn't, then he was afraid that he would never feel like an entire person again. He would still be here, still going through the motions of life, but he would be less than a man, a cardboard cut-out of himself.

Will didn't want to feel that way. It was already starting, and the more he kept trying to push that sensation away, the more it persisted in trying to wrap around him.

He hated feeling that he was missing pieces of himself. He hated knowing that there were incidents that he couldn't remember, things that Hannibal knew that he was still in the dark about. He hated stumbling around in that darkness, feeling that he would never see light again.

Hannibal was the only one who could bring light into that darkness.

But Will didn't want to see him again. He didn't want to face that hideous reptile, to let Hannibal know that he needed so badly to get back those missing pieces of himself.

Of course, Hannibal already knew that; he was simply waiting for Will to come to him. He wanted Will to say that he had won; he wanted to hear the words. He wanted Will to acknowledge that he needed help, and that he couldn't find those missing pieces on his own.

Just another one of Hannibal's manipulations, more of the mind games that Will so hated to play. Well, this time, he wasn't going to be a participant.

He didn't want to give Hannibal the satisfaction.

Will's lips thinned into a firm line. This time, the game would be played his way.

He'd let Hannibal manipulate him far too much in the past; that wasn't going to happen again. This time, that bastard would find out that the tables had turned.

No way was he going to let Hannibal win. He was done with being used, being manipulated. For once, he was going to be the one who held all the cards. Will wasn't entirely sure how he would manage that, but somehow, he'd do it.

For now, he had to concentrate on getting those images in his mind to coalesce, to form more of a cohesive whole, instead of just fleeting pictures.

Not even entire pictures, at the moment. Only bits of them.

It was like seeing images on a roll of film flash by, images that he couldn't quite see but that he knew were there. Images that flashed past him in a heartbeat, in a second. He had to make them slow down, had to view them clearly.

That was going to be almost impossible, unless the images would stop clicking by so fast. They had to be slowed down, had to be studied and contemplated.

Those pieces had to be put back together, carefully, painstakingly, until he had a complete picture in his mind. Hannibal could supply a lot of those missing pieces, but Will knew that his nemesis wouldn't do that. Hannibal wouldn't make this easy for him.

That thought almost made him snort aloud.

Of course Hannibal wouldn't make anything easy for him. Hannibal would dangle those memories just out of reach, simply to watch Will grab for them -- and miss.

He didn't know exactly how he would get Hannibal to admit what he'd done, how he had manipulated Will and managed to screw up his life -- but he would do it. He would get an admission out of Hannibal, one way or another -- or what amounted to an admission.

Hannibal was the one responsible for the murders he had tried to frame Will for. He was the Chesapeake Ripper. Will knew it. And he would prove it.

He would make sure that Hannibal Lecter was put away for good, that he spent the rest of his life behind bars. He didn't know how he would manage that, but somehow, he would. it was now his mission in life, the one thing he was determined to get done.

He wasn't going to let Hannibal ruin anyone else's life, or try to fuck with his again. He would make sure that the bastard paid for all of his crimes.

And he would get those scattered pieces of his memory back.

That was really what mattered the most to him at this point. He needed for those pieces to fall back into place. If they didn't, then he would never be a complete person again; he would always be reaching for something that he couldn't hold, couldn't grasp.

Reaching for something that was no longer there.

The thought made Will shudder. He didn't want to think of himself as some kind of half-finished person, only existing in the darkened shadows of his memory.

'Oh, he would <>look</i> as though he was existing in the real world, but he wouldn't be. It was a terrifying thought, to know that having those memories kept from him, deliberately held out of his reach, could have such an effect on the rest of his life.

Only he wouldn't let them, he told himself firmly. He wasn't going to let Lecter win. Not this time. This time, he was going to be the one to play the mind games.

He would get that admission out of Hannibal, no matter what he had to do. It wouldn't be easy, but he'd manage it somehow. He'd trick Hannibal into it, play the same kind of crafty mind games that Hannibal had managed to ensnare him with.

Again, it wouldn't be easy. He would be playing against a master. Hannibal was more experienced at mind games than he was. He'd been playing them a lot longer.

But Will had learned some things that he intended to put to good use.