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Title: All the Right Reasons
Pairing: Will Graham/Everett Hobbs (Original Character)
Author's Note: Everett's face is Benedict Cumberbatch.
Disclaimer: This is entirely a product of my own imagination, and I make no profit from it. I do not own the lovely Will Graham or Lee Fallon, unfortunately, just borrowing them for a while. Please do not sue.
***"I ...." Everett took a deep breath, facing Will and taking his hands as they sat on the couch, wondering what he should say, how to begin this explanation.
"Everett, whatever you need to say, just say it," Will said, his voice very soft and soothing. "I'm not going to leave. I just need to know your reasons for being here."
Everett nodded, letting out his breath in a whoosh.
He hadn't anticipated this, hadn't thought that Will would want to know about his past and his personal vendetta against Hannibal so soon. But it was time to tell.
And he was ready to talk about it. He needed to. He had kept all of it inside for far too long, and maybe it had started to eat away at him around the edge. He needed to let someone know, and who better than the man he wanted to spend his life with?
"I .... have somewhat of a past with Hannibal that goes beyond Garret and Abigail," he began, shaking his head. "It has nothing to do with them, actually."
"I figured that," Will said softly, his intense blue gaze never leaving Everett's face. "I could see how much you hated Hannibal every time you'd say his name. I don't think anybody else could tell, but for me, it was in your eyes. It showed, and it made me wonder."
"He took someone from me who I loved deeply," Everett whispered, his hands tightening on Will's. "He murdered my fiancÚ. The man I was living with."
Will nodded, his gaze full of sympathy. "Go on."
For several long moments, it was hard for Everett to speak. He kept viewing the past, seeing it in his mind's eyes, seeing that terrible night replayed in living color.
"He .... I don't know if he chose us for a reason, because he already knew Garret or not," Everett murmured. "I've always wondered about that, but I'll probably never know. I don't think so. I think him finding them after he moved to the States was just coincidence."
"I don't believe in coincidences, especially not with him," Will said softly. "I think everything he does is part of a plan. I think he targeted the two of you for a reason."
Everett considered for a moment, the nodded. Yes, he could believe that.
"Whatever the reason, he .... attacked us at home one night," he whispered, swallowing hard. "He must have managed to open a window. He was waiting for us."
Everett continued, unable to stop himself as the words poured out. "He was in the living room when we went in and turned the lights on. I was first, and he .... hit me in the head. I don't know what with. I don't know how long I was unconscious."
He closed his eyes, not wanting to go on. His throat was closing, the horror that he'd felt when he'd come to and seen what was happening enfolding him again.
"I woke up .... I was too disoriented and weak to get to my feet, and I wasn't sure if I was dreaming or not," he managed to choke out. "He was bent over Luke -- my fiancÚ -- and he was .... he was ...." Everett swallowed, closing his eyes.
Will's hands tightened on his, squeezing gently, obviously trying to impart the strength to go on with his tale. Taking a deep breath, Everett spoke again, the words shaky.
"He was .... cutting off Luke's leg. To take it with him."
Bile rose in his throat at the memory; for just a moment, he was sure that he would throw up, but he fought back the sensation and kept going.
"He'd already gut off Luke's arm, I could see that .... and all I could think was that I would be next." He stopped again, a shudder going through him.
"Then I passed out, and when I woke up again, he was gone. Luke's body was lying there, minus an arm and a leg, and I knew he was dead. He was .... there was so much blood," Everett whispered, the horror fresh in his mind again. "So much red."
Will squeezed his hand gently again, trying to communicate strength and understanding. Everett found himself clinging to that hand as though to a lifeline.
"Did you know what he intended to do with the body parts?" Will asked, his voice very low. "No, that's a stupid question. You couldn't have known then."
Everett shook his head, answering Will in the affirmative. "I had no idea, but I think something told me that they weren't simply trophies of his kill. I might not have known definitively, but something about his eyes .... in the back of my mind, I think I knew what he was."
"You didn't see his face clearly, did you?" Will whispered, a look of horror dawning on his face. Everett knew just what he was thinking, and shook his head quickly.
"He doesn't know that I did," he said, taking another deep breath to steady himself. "At first, when I saw what he was doing to Luke, I didn't. But later ...."
His voice trailed off again, then gathered strength as the memory solidified.
"When he was leaving, I did. When he was walking out of the door, he turned and surveyed Luke's body -- and he smiled. This horrid smile of .... of satisfaction."
Now the words poured out; Everett couldn't seem to stem the tide of them. "It was a smile that spoke of a reward for a job well done. And when he looked at Luke's severed arm and leg in the plastic bags he was carrying, I knew what he was. How could I not?"
The shudder went through him again as he remembered the hungry, greedy expression on Hannibal's face. "He couldn't see me. I was behind the coffee table. But I saw him."
He didn't take his eyes from Will's face as he continued. "I saw him clearly, Will. I knew exactly who he was. Well, I didn't know his name at the time, but I could identify him. And once I did find out his name, I made it my life's mission to catch him."
"Why didn't the authorities do anything when you went to them about Luke's death?" Will asked, unable to believe that such a horrible crime hadn't been investigated.
"They didn't believe me," Everett whispered. "They didn't think I'd seen him."
"What?" Will could hardly believe his ears. "They didn't believe that you'd seen the killer, even when you could give them a detailed description of how he looked?"
Everett nodded miserably, closing his eyes again. "They made up every excuse that they could not to follow through. Telling me that I couldn't possibly have seen him as clearly as I thought I had, that there was no way he would have let me live if I had been a witness."
"That's true enough," Will said, his voice grim. "He normally wouldn't. But he didn't know that you'd seen his face. And it sounds like a cover-up to me."
Everett nodded in agreement, anger written in his expression.
"They didn't give a damn about catching the person who did it," he almost snarled. "It was as thought they knew who it was, and were protecting him."
The feeling of helplessness swept over him again, that feeling of being caught in a web, struggling to get free and knowing that he couldn't. The feeling that the deck was stacked against him, and that he was never going to find justice for himself and Luke.
"That was why it was so important to me to prove you innocent," he said softly, finally looking into Will's blue eyes again. "As much for myself as for you."
Will nodded, a small smile curving his lips. "I understand," he whispered, squeezing Everett's hands gently again. "I do. I'd feel the same way. And we're going to get justice, Everett. For both you and Luke. And for me, too. We're going to put Hannibal behind bars."
"I'm just glad that you're not behind those bars any longer," Everett said with a sigh. "Even though I do believe that it was him who got you out."
Will nodded, his brow creasing in thought.
"I don't know his reasons behind doing that, but they're not the right ones," he said with a sigh. "But your reasons for being here, and for helping me, are."
Everett nodded, relieved that Will understood him and agreed with his reasons for being here. Yes, they were the right reasons, at least for people who believed in justice, as the two of them did. His reasons were ones that any decent person would understand.
He was here for the right reasons, and he would stay here until he and Will -- hopefully, with the FBI's help -- had put Hannibal in prison for the rest of his life, where he belonged.
It wouldn't be easy, but somehow, it would be done.
Together, he and Will would prove Hannibal's guilt, and they would find justice -- not only for Will and Luke, but for everyone that Hannibal had ever victimized.
They would bring justice for all of the right reasons.
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