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"Jack Crawford came to see me today," Will announces without looking up from his dinner. 

Hannibal pauses. "Tell me," he says, "that he was just seeing how you're adapting to academic life."

Will twitches an almost-smile. "I should be so lucky. He's got a case."

Hannibal resumes eating. "He's always got a case. He's the Head Auror. It's nothing to do with you anymore."

"It's the Chesapeake Ripper."

Hannibal supresses a smile. Oh, dear Will. "The Chesapeake Ripper hasn't been active in three years. Or if he has, it hasn't been in the papers."

"Jack says it's him. I'd have to see the bodies to be sure."

Hannibal sets down his fork. "Will, that was an extremely high profile case. Are you really prepared for the additional stress?"

"No," Will says candidly.

"Well then. It seems you have made your decision. I'm sure Jack will be disappointed."

"They'd have to split up my classes," Will muses. "Mandaria can't cover them all. Maybe you could take one..."



"Let's change the subject. Will you be attending my dinner party next Saturday?"

Will sighs. "I don't know if my conversation is up to your society friends' standards."

"Alana Bloom will be there. I will seat you next to her her."

Will glances up at Hannibal and finally smiles. "All right. And I'll try to keep the Ripper out of the conversation."

Hannibal nearly laughs out loud at that. "That's all I ask."