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Title: Road To Nowhere
Pairing: Hannibal Lecter/Will Graham
Prompt: The road to nowhere
Author's Note: Sequel to "Coping Mechanisms."
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.
***Maybe Hannibal was right. Maybe he did need some time off.
Will sighed, leaning back in his desk chair. His last class had been over half an hour ago; he could pick up the essays he'd have to read and grade over the weekend, and go home.
But he didn't want to leave the safety of his classroom, for some reason. He didn't know why, but this was starting to feel like the only place where he was comfortable.
Even being in his own home made him nervous and jumpy these days. He always expected to have more visions of himself lying dead and cold under a bloodstained sheet when he was at home; he didn't want to drift off to sleep, or even let himself daydream, because of that.
It was probably a ridiculous fear; after all, the visions had only seemed to assail him thus far when he was at a crime scene, working actively on a case. But he couldn't be too careful.
He didn't want to keep having those visions. He wanted them to disappear for good, to suddenly go away and leave him in peace. But that wasn't likely to happen.
He had those visions for a reason. And they still seemed like premonitions to him.
They weren't going to simply disappear. They would keep happening until he knew what the reason for them was, he was sure of it. They wouldn't leave him alone.
What if he never found out why he had them? The thought of having those visions for the rest of his life made a cold chill run down Will's spine; the last thing he wanted was to see himself as a corpse every time he was at a crime scene doing his job. That would be unbearable.
And it would also make it impossible to keep doing his job. Eventually, he wouldn't be able to face those visions any longer. They would break him.
He'd be useless at his job, unable to keep making a difference.
Panic rose in him at the thought. The last thing he wanted was to feel that he could no longer do what he was meant to, that he could no longer use his ability to help people.
Maybe it didn't really help, Will thought bitterly. After all, the people he dealt with were already dead when they first came to his attention. Maybe he was simply striding on a treadmill, on an endless road to nowhere that never really helped anyone. Maybe he was just wasting his time.
No, that wasn't true, he told himself firmly. He did help people. He helped the families of those victims get the closure they needed. He did some good in the world.
He wanted to keep doing that good. He wanted to keep helping people as much as he could. That was why he'd become a cop, and then joined the FBI.
He'd always wanted to make a difference, to bring some good into the world. What better way to do that then by going after criminals, catching them and bringing them to justice? And with his singular ability, he was better equipped to do that than most people ever could be.
It didn't matter that a lot of people thought of him as being some kind of freak. He'd long ago learned to brush off those kinds of attitudes. Those people didn't know him. They didn't matter.
But it did hurt when people who knew him saw him in that light.
He should expect that, though, Will thought with another soft sigh. The people who knew him were all too aware of his foibles and failings. They saw him for who he was.
Did everyone who knew him think that he was traveling on a road to nowhere, that if his ability deserted him he would be good for nothing? Of course not, Will admonished himself. Everyone who worked with him knew that he was a good teacher. He wouldn't be completely useless without his empathy.
Still, it was disconcerting to think of what his life might be like without it. And it was a part of him that he'd grown used to, even as he decried it in some ways.
Though if it was his empathy that was causing him to have these terrifying visions ....
No, it couldn't be that, Will told himself. If those frightening visions of his own death were caused by his empathy, they would have started happening a long time ago.
Wouldn't they? Or had they simply been building up in his mind, waiting to jump out at him and attack him when he was feeling doubtful about his ability?
He wanted to know why those visions had suddenly begun, why they refused to stop, and why they bothered him so much. For some odd reason, he couldn't simply write them off as being by-products of the job that he did; they felt as if they were premonitions, a kind of warning.
Will wouldn't be surprised if someone wanted him dead. He'd put a lot of criminals behind bars; he didn't doubt that if they got out, they'd be gunning for him.
But this seemed to go far beyond that. This was a warning that seemed to become more dire each time it happened, as if there were walls closing in on him, as if he didn't have much time left.
He shuddered again, suddenly feeling cold and very much alone.
One thing was for sure, he told himself firmly. He had to get to the bottom of this, find out just why these visions had suddenly begun to plague him.
He had to stop spinning his wheels on the road to nowhere. He had to stand up to these visions he was having, find out just why they were coming to him, and then manage to banish them forever. He could never get out from under their thumb if he kept being terrorized by them. That had to stop.
Taking a deep breath, Will pushed back his chair and got to his feet, gathering the essays together and putting them into his messenger bag to take home with him. He'd grade them tonight.
Maybe they would help him forget about his disturbing visions, at least for a little while.
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