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Title: Vengeful Shadow
By: angstytimelord
Pairing: Will Graham/Everett Hobbs (Original Character)
Fandom: Hannibal
Rating: PG-13
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.

***


Well, now Will knew the truth about why he had come to the States and offered to take his case pro bono. There were no more secrets between them.

Everett sighed softly, feeling relief wash through him.

He had wanted to tell Will the truth from the beginning, but hadn't felt that he could. After all, there were too many ways for Chilton to hear what they were saying.

He didn't doubt that some of the guards in that horrible place reported directly to Chilton, so anything that they could have whispered out of range of the microphones, any looks that they'd exchanged that weren't caught by the cameras, would have been seen and noted.

But now that Will was a free man, there were no more barriers separating them. No sour-faced man keeping watch over them like the proverbial hawk.

They could express their feelings for each other freely. No one could stop them. It was a relief to know that Will felt the same as he did, that he wanted to start a relationship. That fact made his heart sing and his soul soar. He'd never felt so happy in his life.

But there was a shadow that hung over their happiness, a shadow that would always be there until they could find a way to vanquish it for good.

A vengeful shadow whose name was Hannibal Lecter.

That shadow was always going to hang over their lives, darkening their days, until they could put it where it belonged -- behind bars for good. He didn't know how they were going to manage that, but somehow, they would. He was determined to achieve that goal.

He wanted to see Hannibal pay for his crimes. He wanted justice for not only his late fiancÚ, but for everyone who Hannibal had ever harmed.

That didn't just mean the people that he'd killed, the innocent lives he had taken. He wanted justice and closure for all the families who had been left bereft because of Hannibal's evil, for all the people who had lost loved ones and had felt the same pain that he himself did.

Then, and only then, would he feel that his job was done.

He wanted justice for Will, too, Everett told himself, a frown furrowing his brow. He wanted Will to be able to close the book on the last chapter of his life.

Until Will could do that, until he could find the closure that he needed, the two of them would never be able to have a happy, normal life together. Yes, they could be together, but that shadow would always hang over them, and Will would always look over his shoulder.

In truth, so would he. He didn't doubt that Hannibal would come after the two of them - with the objective of getting him out of the way.

He wasn't blind. He had seen the anger, the possessiveness, the jealousy in Hannibal's eyes in the one encounter they'd had with each other.

His own anger matched Hannibal's; he didn't doubt that. But unlike the other man, he wasn't willing to kill, or do anything else that it might take, to have Will in his life. He wasn't a criminal; he wasn't a murderer. As much as he loved Will, he drew the line at that.

Hannibal would draw no lines, accept no boundaries. He would do anything he could to have Will back in his control, to keep the young man under his thumb.

Everett didn't doubt that for a moment. Hannibal was a ruthless man.

He would do all in his power to stop that from happening. He had no intention of relinquishing the man he loved to Hannibal Lecter; he knew that it could be all too easy for Will to fall under his spell, to be coerced into becoming something he would normally recoil from.

Or would it be that easy? Everett wondered. There was a core of strength in Will, a steely willpower that he wouldn't have thought the young man possessed.

Will Graham was no wilting flower; he wasn't the kind of person who was going to simply give in without a fight, especially not if the argument was over something he believed in. He wouldn't let Hannibal turn him into something that he didn't want to become.

Will had an inner core of strength, and incredible presence of mind.

Everett had no doubt that Will could stand his own ground against Hannibal, but still, he was glad that he was here to help the young man take a stand.

What he really wanted was to get Will out of here, to take him to London, and for the two of them to settle down there. Somehow, he felt that it would be safer for both of them, that they would be out of Hannibal's immediate line of fire.

But would they really? he asked himself. Hannibal could easily fabricate a reason to get on a plane and fly to London, to menace them there.

No, they weren't safe from Hannibal, no matter where they went. The only way that they'd be safe from his machinations was when he was behind bars for good, all of his evil exposed for the world to see. They would never be free of his shadow until that happened.

He didn't want that vengeful shadow to keep hanging over their lives. He wanted for them to be able to live and love freely, without having to look over their shoulders.

Was that ever going to happen? Everett thought with a sigh.

He could only hope that it would, and that the inevitable confrontation with Hannibal would be one where he and Will would come out on the winning side.

***