In the following two weeks, Hannibal’s house stopped breaking, but clearly, something was wrong with the doctor’s phone. Will got used to being sent to voicemail.
“Hello, you’ve reached Dr. Hannibal Lecter. If this is about an appointment, please call my office. If you require anything else, please leave a brief message and your number. Have a good day.”
Will sighed. It was probably the tenth sigh clogging up Hannibal’s voicemail. Hanging up, he started pacing around his living room. He’d gotten a voicemail of his own today, left while Will was lecturing, from a pinch-voiced woman who told him Hannibal would have to cancel his appointment again. He called back in an unsociable mood. When pressed about why his psychiatrist was canceling two appointments in a row, the woman had said simply he’d get a referral in the mail.
Will had taken a hard look at himself, lied to his coworkers and friend, plotted a murder to protect this fucking asshole — and he was getting a referral.
He stopped mid-step. The dogs stopped with him. Winston panted at his side, Buster was poised for action by his still aloft foot, Harley…Harley was eating a sock, goddamn it.
Will wrestled a wet Hanes tube sock out of his shepherd mix’s throat, grumbling the whole time. “I was ready. I was ready and willing and what the fuck do I get for all this?”
Harley hacked up the sock with a wet gurgle. Buster tried to grab the soggy end and play tug. Winston looked at Will with the same long-suffering stare he imagined was on his own face. “What the fuck was I supposed to do? Kill Alana the minute she walked into the house?”
Winston laid down, his head on Will’s knee. He sighed, tossing the soiled sock onto his bed and petting behind Winston’s ears.
“Maybe he hung up before the kiss? Maybe he just…heard Alana and I talking about…” Will winced. “About how I’m seducing him for the FBI.”
Buster walked onto Will’s lap, demanding affection. Will used his free hand to offer belly rubs. “He hasn’t killed a single person…I think I really hurt him.”
Will had expected to die, at least for Alana to die. The fact that he was still breathing and he received a rather embarrassed text from Alana last week talking about maintaining their friendship left Will at a bit of a loss. Did Hannibal not really want him?
He’d spent more of his free time than he’d like to admit obsessing over that very question. Will would lecture, ignore his students, snap at Jack or whoever was stupid enough to wander into his office, and go home to his dogs. At night, he’d dial Hannibal’s number, be sent to voicemail, and spend the rest of the evening making omelets and moping around with the dogs. On the upside, he could now roll a perfect French omelet with fresh chives in his sleep. He’d started feeding the damn things to the dogs. Winston preferred chervil on his omelets, which he thought Hannibal would appreciate, if they ever spoke again.
“I wish he’d just drop a body,” Will muttered to Buster. “Then, I’d at least know what he was feeling.”
Buster yawned in his master’s lap, totally unconcerned about the tatters of Will’s love life. Will sighed and got up, it was time for him to start making omelets.
His phone pinged as he sat out the eggs. A Google Alert about Hannibal Lecter. Will paused, it wasn’t from TattleCrime, so at least he hadn’t been caught. He clicked the alert and found an article about a benefit for Blue Herons. There was a write up about the wonderful people attending and a picture of Hannibal with his arm around the waist of a lovely woman who was evidently the head of the Heron charity.
Will blinked at the photo a few times. He allowed the feelings of jealousy and rage wash over him for a moment. But there was something wrong in the photo…
Enlarging it, Will studied Hannibal closely. The subtle smile was the same as Will remembered, and the graceful posture still cut a beautiful line, but Hannibal looked…human. His bow tie was crooked, the angle just off enough that Will itched to right it. There were five wrinkles on his tuxedo shirt, and one of the sleeves was hanging further out of the jacket than the other. The doctor’s hair was quaffed back in his signature gelled look, but a few pieces had fallen into his eyes. He looked like every other elegant affluent man in the photo.
“Oh my god, he’s a mess.” Will grinned at the photo, saving it to his phone. He’d been waiting for concrete proof that Hannibal had missed him desperately, and the doctor had delivered. A wrinkled shirt and a crooked bow tie were a cry for help if ever Will saw one, and he was more than willing to answer it. He looked over his shoulder at Winston. “Think you can hold down the fort?”
Winston cocked his head as Will called his neighbor — he’d need someone to look in on the dogs in the morning.
The lights of the Bentley were bright as Hannibal pulled in the driveway. Will squinted but remained resolute as he leaned against the portico.
Hannibal did his best to ignore the obvious presence of a person on his doorstep — getting out of the car, brushing a hand down his suit, retrieving his briefcase. Will stepped off the porch to directly block the doctor’s path to his home.
“I believe my new secretary called you to inform you our appointment was canceled.”
Will hummed, smiling when Hannibal approached. “She did. Offered me a referral and everything.”
“Then why are you here?”
“Your window’s broken, I wanted to make sure it was fixed.”
Will waved a crowbar in front of Hannibal’s eyes before chucking it as hard as he could through the large study window, smiling as it shattered. “That one.”
Hannibal’s lip curled just a bit, but he smoothed the expression and attempted to sidestep Will. “I’ll call a repairman.”
Will moved back into Hannibal’s path. “You have one.”
“I’m sure Alana Bloom needs some-”
“You were the one wasting time with Alana, not me.” Will tilted his head.
“It seems I’ve been wasting a great deal of time, lately.”
“You’re smarter than this, Hannibal.” Will reached up, allowing himself to grip the doctor’s sleeve and dig his fingers into the fine fabric. “Who did I call every time I pretended to ruin a dish? Alana Bloom? Do you think I come running whenever someone else has trouble opening a window?”
“The FBI paid you quite handsomely for your time, I’m sure.” Hannibal stilled under Will’s hand. It was a move designed to look like submission, but Will knew a predator ready to strike when he saw one.
Will pursed his lips, trying to parse out what words would get him in the house without blood loss. “They did, but you knew that the moment I showed up to resume my therapy, didn’t you?”
“I don’t think you particularly care if Jack knows I unclog your pipes.” Will leaned in. “I’ll keep the fact that you’re single hung to myself.”
“I don’t want someone who believes me to be a killer in my home-”
“Never stopped you before.” Will let the fingers clasped to Hannibal’s arm loosen. Hannibal made no move to get away. “In fact, I think you rather liked playing this game, seeing if you could elude the FBI while flirting with their lead bloodhound.”
“It should be quite clear to you that I’ve ended whatever game you think we were playing.”
“Yeah, but you didn’t end the game because of my job, Hannibal. You ended it because of Alana.” Will let his smile grow teeth. “So whatever type of monster you are, it’s safe to assume you have green eyes.”
“I believe you described Alana as kissable, once,” Hannibal sniffed. “Are you telling me you no longer find her so?”
Will shook his head. “Oh no, she’s still very kissable, I’m pretty sure you know that. But that’s not the question that needs answering, Hannibal.”
“And what question do you need answered?” Hannibal leaned in; Will could practically see the hook in his mouth.
Tilting his head, Will lofted an eyebrow as he studied the man before him. “Are you kissable, Dr. Lecter?”
Hannibal moved between heartbeats, breaking Will’s hold on his arm and snatching a handful of Will’s cotton Henley. The doctor hauled Will close, black-eyed and snarling. Will was dizzy with want of this incredible monster.
“Well,” Will’s voice had gone rough. “are you?”
“Extremely,” growled Hannibal, reeling Will into a connection that was half bite, half kiss.
Will bit back, groaning as he grabbed handfuls of Hannibal’s hair and held his monster close. Snagging Hannibal’s lower lip in his teeth, Will tugged at the vulnerable flesh until he felt himself being lifted.
He wrapped his legs around Hannibal’s waist, grinning as he was carried to the front door. Hannibal pressed him against the door, fumbling with keys and grinding against Will at an angle so perfect Will was afraid he’d come in his pants before they found a solid surface.
“If you don’t open that door now, I’m giving your neighbors one hell of a show,” Will hissed, rolling his hips as Hannibal sucked along his jugular.
The door swung open. Vaguely, Will noted that they were in the foyer. Hannibal’s mouth was back on his jaw, teeth nipping neatly along Will’s chin until the empath dipped down to meet his lips. The next set of kisses were softer, lips tugging softly as Will delighted in the small noises rumbling in Hannibal’s chest.
The doctor’s hands had found their way to Will’s ass, helping Will grind against him as he stumbled them toward the stairs.
A crunching noise finally broke through Will’s kiss drunk haze. He pulled back, glancing down to see that a few shards of glass had scattered into the foyer. “Shit, Hannibal…Hannibal, stop.”
Will nearly landed on his ass he was released so quickly. He staggered against the study doorway before righting himself.
“Will, I-” Will pushed his fingers to Hannibal’s lips, stroking his thumb along the doctor’s strong jaw. He glanced into the study and grimaced.
Three panels of glass had shattered when Will chucked the crowbar into the huge glass window, with at least five more cracked and threatening to fall. The glass had sprayed out, coating the harpsichord and floor leading to the foyer. The crowbar laid beside a green chair, part of a shattered ram skull cradling it.
“Shit.” Will panted, trying not to think about the man currently nuzzling into the palm of his hand. “We need to tarp up the window at least.”
“It could rain…it’ll only take a few minutes.” He squinted at the floor. “Vacuum up the glass while I-”
“Will-” Hannibal’s fingers wrapped softly around Will’s wrist, pulling him away from the destruction.
“I wasn’t thinking. I should have thrown it through the foyer door, there are fewer breakables. I think your harpsichord is OK, if there are scratches I can-”
Will was yanked backward, landing on Hannibal’s chest. “Later.”
“We need to seal the window, and the glass-”
“Forget the fucking glass.”
Will froze, eyes wide. “I didn’t know you knew words like that.”
“I know words like that in seven languages.” Hannibal paused. “Are you genuinely concerned about the state of my study, or are you looking for an excuse to stop this?”
Will wound his arms around Hannibal’s neck, drawing the man into a soft, seeking kiss. “If it rains your floor will be ruined.”
Hannibal’s arms crept around Will’s waist, drawing him in. “I know an excellent handyman.”
Will angled his head, teasing the tip of his tongue along Hannibal’s cupid’s bow. “Then I guess you should call him after you take me upstairs.”
Hannibal hummed into a few short, chaste kisses. “I’m sure he’ll be here first thing in the morning.”
“Not first thing,” Will said, grinning. “He’s planning on sleeping in a bit.”
“After 10, then, if he’s able to walk.” Hannibal’s eyes danced. He dipped low and threw Will over his shoulder. Will let out a surprised yelp before laughing as Hannibal crunched through a few more pieces of glass and headed for the stairs.
Hannibal released Will a few steps from the bed, stepping back and assessing Will has he loosened his tie.
“Why Dr. Lecter, did something else break in your bedroom?” Will grinned yanking the Henley over his head and tossing it to the side.
“Not yet, but I rather fear for the bedframe.” Hannibal pulled his tie free, tossing it to the side. Will stepped into his space, fingers eagerly working on the doctor’s waistcoat buttons.
“Don’t worry, I’ll build you a better-” Will frowned, fingers stumbling over the buttons. “Fuck, how long does it take you to undress every night?”
“There’s a trick to it.” Hannibal took Will’s hands in his, kissing the fingers softly before letting them drop. With the barest hint of a smile, he sank his fingers between the folds of his waistcoat and yanked.
The sound of fabric ripping filled the air. Will was thankful one of the flying buttons didn’t land in his open mouth. Hannibal had torn both his waistcoat and shirt open, revealing a heaving powerful chest and a thatch of greying hair covering it.
Will blinked, licking his lips. “Naked. Now.”
Hannibal’s smile grew wider as he rolled his shoulders out of the torn clothing and let the fabric fall at his feet. “What a wonderful idea.”
Will’s hands fell to his pants, fumbling to undo the button and kick out of his shoes at the same time. He managed to free himself without falling over, but it was a near thing. When he righted himself and scrambled onto the bed, he found Hannibal, barefoot but still annoyingly in his trousers, watching him with a large smile.
“Look how eager you are, handsome boy.” Will’s stomach contracted around the praise, his ears ringing at the pleasure it evoked. “Tell me, Will, when you fixed my window…what would you have done if had I grabbed you and dragged you back to this very bed?”
“I would have begged,” Will rasped. He watched as Hannibal carefully undid his belt, running the supple leather through his hands before letting it fall to the floor. He undid his trousers, observing Will as he pushed them off his hips and let them pool at his feet. He stepped out of the fabric and walked to the foot of the bed. Will was mesmerized by the small scrap of silken fabric wrapped around Hannibal’s hips, obscenely tented and stretched taut.
“And what would you have begged for?” Hannibal toyed with the band on his underwear. “To be released? For me to stop?”
Will squirmed trying to hook an ankle around Hannibal’s hip. The doctor caught his foot, carefully thumbing along the Achilles tendon. Hannibal’s desire started poking into his mind. He could see teeth sunk into his flesh, fingernails clawing down his back. His mind swam as his desires began to swirl with the doctor’s own. “Will? What would you have begged for?”
“I do, which is why I want you to say it.”
“Anything you’ll give me,” Will hissed, raising his chin in challenge, even as he felt his cheeks flame.
Hannibal hummed as if seriously considering Will’s request, then bent to slip long legs out of his underwear. When he stood, Will felt himself shiver as his body ran hot and cold. The reality of Hannibal was so much better than the image Will’s mind had supplied him. The powerful chest and densely muscled arms were the same, but there was a beautiful softness to Hannibal’s body as well. A bramble of greying chest hair covered Hannibal’s pecks, trailing lazily down a slightly soft stomach. Will’s fingers flexed in the sheets, eager to sink his hands into that hair, sink his teeth into the vulnerable flesh just below it. The doctor’s cock lay thick and ruddy against his thigh, filling steadily as the man observed Will. Hannibal tilted his head. “And what will you give me in return?”
Will’s mouth fell open, but his breath caught on the words. His hands clawed into Hannibal’s linens again, body trying to right itself, to regulate. He could feel his own desire coursing through him, but the tide of Hannibal’s flowed through him too. It was too much, and he could feel himself slipping below the surface, losing himself to it.
Hannibal crawled onto the bed, body all rippling sinew and muscle in the low light of the bedroom. Will felt pinned, still gasping as a predator loomed large over him. He could feel his need and Hannibal’s, but he couldn’t seem to find air.
A large hand cupped Will’s jaw. “Will? I need you to focus-”
“I…there’s so much…”
“It’s just like cooking together, darling boy.” Soft lips kissed along his jaw, teeth finding and tugging an earlobe.
“Will…will you…” Will knew he was red with embarrassment, he clung to Hannibal’s shoulders, burying his face in the doctor’s strong embrace.
“Do you want to work from my recipe this time, Will?” The empath nodded. If he was going to let himself drown, it would be with this man. He’d take them both over the edge. Hannibal shifted, his bulk pressing Will into the bed. “Close your eyes.”
In the dark, the tide receded just a little. He could feel his own mind again, the waves of Hannibal’s need ebbing just a bit. “Take three deep breaths, then we shall begin.”
Will inhaled the scent of earthy aftershave and sweat, his mouth watering as he let the Hannibal-spiced air into him. After three breaths, he opened his eyes to find Hannibal watching him. He looked so human with bangs falling over his eyes, lips parted and kiss swollen. Will managed a smile. “OK, what are we making?”
Hannibal kissed him, slow and filthy, the doctor’s tongue stroking along Will’s teeth as he rolled their bodies together. Will made a soft noise, digging his fingers into Hannibal’s hips to increase the friction. Hannibal smiled when they pulled apart. “First, I think we should familiarize ourselves with our work areas.”
Will smiled, feeling some of the tension leak from his system as Hannibal peppered kisses down his neck. The doctor trailed his lips over Will’s collarbone, teeth catching as he kissed along the bone. Will shivered, arching as Hannibal fitted his hands around Will’s hips and dragged his lips over a stiff nipple. Will whined, fingers clawing up Hannibal’s shoulders and sinking into his hair, holding the doctor’s mouth against him. Sharp pain made Will flex his hips as Hannibal closed his teeth around the sensitive peak before soothing it with a few wet sucks.
He looked up at Will, hair a mess and spit-slick lips smiling. “It’s always preferable to know exactly what you’re working with.”
Hannibal dragged his mouth across Will’s chest to bring teeth and tongue to Will’s other nipple. Distantly, Will knew he was making ungodly pleading noises, but his whole world seemed to center on Hannibal’s mouth and the sharp pleasure it offered.
Will groaned when Hannibal’s fingers tightened on his hips, mouth sliding wet and hot over Will’s stomach as it kissed its way south. “Fuck, fuck, Hannibal, pl-”
“Beside you, darling,” Hannibal raised up, chin centimeters from Will’s weeping cock. “The top drawer of the nightstand, I believe you’ll find an ingredient.”
Will nodded, he felt like he was floating. His hands felt heavy as he grabbed at the drawer, retrieving the lube with thick fingers. He sat the black container by his hip, staring with foggy vision at the man smiling up at him. Hannibal’s chin dipped, rubbing slightly against Will’s aching cock. A day’s worth of stubble caught the delicate skin as the doctor dragged his face against it.
Will howled. His whole body sparked with pain and pleasure. When firm hands forced his hips back to the bed, Will looked down, amazed he hadn’t come. Hannibal grinned at him, toothy and feral as he nuzzled against Will’s cock again.
Will nodded. His body was taut as he watched Hannibal rub against his groin like a contented cat, stubble rubbing Will raw, razing the skin from his bones. It felt…transformative, as though Hannibal was reshaping him even now, forming him into something stronger and more natural.
Hannibal’s mouth fitted to the base of Will’s cock, pressing sloppy kisses on heated flesh. He traced a vein with his tongue, offering Will a smug little twist of his lips before sinking his mouth around the empath’s cock. Will writhed. His hands found Hannibal’s hair and shoulders, fingernails digging into tender flesh. Each time he scratched along Hannibal’s skin, the doctor scraped his teeth on Will’s cock. It didn’t feel like a warning, it felt like a conjoining. Their desires blended again in Will’s mind, waves of pain and pleasure. He didn’t drown this time, he let Hannibal’s body buoy him, letting him float with the sensations that whited out every other thought in his mind.
When Will started rolling his hips into Hannibal’s mouth, the doctor stopped, gazing at Will with black eyes. Will moaned when Hannibal sat up, the empath’s body felt cold without the solid form blanketing his legs. He watched as Hannibal opened the lube, slicking two fingers.
Something cracked in Will’s chest and a laugh burst forth. When he saw Hannibal pull back, with a positively goofy expression of confusion, the laughter grew. Will grabbed Hannibal’s wrist, bringing it to his chest as he laughed. After a few moments, he found his breath, bringing Hannibal’s hand up and kissing the back of it fondly.
“I’m sorry, I-” Will huffed again, then shook his head. “All this longing and flirting and then you ask me that, like…”
Like I wasn’t yours from the very first.
Will faltered, offering Hannibal a helpless shrug. The doctor smiled back at Will, his eyes crinkling with affection. “I’m just happy to see you smile, Will.”
They kissed, slower this time and full of promise. Will pressed himself into Hannibal’s body, letting his own warm at the touch.
Hannibal pulled back, expression serious but eyes dancing. “You never did answer me.”
Will spread his legs, looping one slender limb over Hannibal’s knees. “You may.”
He couldn’t stop the snort, then the giggles. But he paused when he heard a high-pitched laugh from the man next to him. Hannibal leaned forward, still chuckling softly as he slotted himself between Will’s legs. The laughter died between them, but not the smiles. Hannibal kissed him once, drawing back just to make Will chase his lips for another kiss.
“Incorrigible,” Hannibal purred. Will felt something burst forth bright and warm in his chest. He looped his arms around Hannibal’s neck, demanding inelegant, grinning kisses as the man over him began stroking soft fingers over his hole.
“O-oh,” Will trembled when the first finger breached him, tensing immediately.
“Have you done this before, darling boy?”
Will hissed, trying to force his body to relax. He craned up, seeking Hannibal’s mouth. The doctor kept it just out of reach, watching Will intently. “Y-yeah, couple times by myself.”
Hannibal hummed, slowing the movement of his hand as he dipped to kiss Will’s neck. “A few sticky fumblings in your own bed?”
Will groaned as Hannibal stroked along his prostate; just the tease of sensation. Hannibal’s teeth caught on the knob of Will’s jaw; the doctor’s lips drawing back to whisper softly in his ear. “And who did you think of as you fucked yourself with your own fingers, I wonder?”
A broken sound cracked from Will’s throat. Hannibal sank his teeth into the vibrations.
“You enjoy that don’t you, darling? You like pushing me to base words.” Hannibal lapped at the mark he left on Will’s neck. He added another finger and Will’s hand scrabbled to find purchase, anything to keep him from soaring off the bed. “Would you like some more, pretty thing? Something crude to focus on while you adjust?”
Will mashed their mouths together, sucking on Hannibal’s tongue as he fucked himself on the doctor’s fingers. They broke apart on a moan, Will raking his fingers down Hannibal’s chest, pulling on the hair. “Please.”
Hannibal’s eyes glinted. “I’m going to stretch you with two fingers, Will. Just enough to keep you from tearing before I take you. I want you to feel my cock, darling. I want you to watch those beautiful eyes roll back in your head as you burn between agony and rapture. It’ll hurt, my love, but we both know you want that, don’t we? You want my teeth in your neck and my cock in your ass, don’t you?”
“O-oh god, please, now. F-fuck me now.” Will yanked on Hannibal’s chest hair, savoring the hiss it drew.
“Not yet, wild thing,” Hannibal crooked his fingers, rubbing insistently on Will’s prostate. “Once you’re writhing on my hand like the wanton little creature I know you to be, I’m going to pull out and trace over that fluttering hole. You’ll feel the absence, feel like I gutted you and hollowed you out. And only then, only when you beg for me to fill you back up will I take you.”
Will’s whole body was shaking, he still felt the stretch every time Hannibal moved his fingers, but it wasn’t enough. Nothing ever seemed to be enough with Hannibal. Groaning in frustration, Will began to move in earnest, fucking himself on Hannibal’s hands while trying to pull the man in question on top of him. Hannibal resisted, only allowing short kisses as he pressed his fingers relentlessly into Will. The empath bared his teeth. “Now. You’ll f-fuck me now or I’ll tear you to fucking pieces.”
Hannibal grinned, eyes glittering as he leaned over Will. “You terrifying thing, I think you would.”
Will lunged forward, biting hard at Hannibal’s shoulder as he grabbed Hannibal’s wrist and tore it from his body. He did feel gutted, as if Hannibal had pulled everything that wasn’t him from Will’s body, leaving him hollow and wanting.
“My wonderful Will,” Hannibal rasped, reaching with shaking fingers for the lube to slick his cock. He moved slightly, not pulling away from Will’s teeth, but pressing into them as he hitched Will’s thighs over his hips. “I think I’ll keep you.”
Will clenched his jaw, unwilling to let his prize go. Hannibal shifted and Will felt the blunt press of the doctor’s cock against him. He bit down as Hannibal thrust forward, the burn of penetration zipping up his spine as coppery blood filled his mouth. Will wanted to chew, consume — take Hannibal as he was being taken.
Hannibal pulled out, thrusting shallowly into Will — tickling, aching movements that fell just short of where Will needed him to be. With a pained groan, Will released Hannibal’s shoulder, bloody mouth snarling at the man above him. “Hannibal-”
The doctor paused; his expression frozen as his eyes swept over Will’s face. Tears formed as he brought a hand to Will’s chin, trailing through some of his own blood before holding it to Will’s mouth for the empath to bite and suck.
“Exquisite,” he whispered. Will could feel the blood from Hannibal’s shoulder dripping onto his chest. He looked into Hannibal’s face, utterly lost to such awe. He wanted to tell Hannibal he felt the same. To admit he saw the beauty in his tableaus, to beg to learn at his hand how to elevate man into art. He wanted to confess his love and seal them together forever in the same breath.
Instead, he lapped at Hannibal’s weeping wound before offering the cannibal his own blood on Will’s tongue. Hannibal keened as he took Will’s mouth, slamming home and fucking Will deep. The next minutes were all teeth and nails — Hannibal thrusting into Will’s prostate and Will clawing intricate slices along Hannibal’s back in patterns Matthew Brown would have never thought to make. It was brutal, it was animalistic —
It was beautiful.
Will wondered if he’d ever truly loved the man, or if this monster, who was all power but careful, blunted teeth with Will in his arms, was always what drew him to Hannibal.
“Fuck, fuck, H-Hannibal, mark me,” Will felt so close. His body undulated on waves of pleasure, he needed something sharp to keep him from slipping under again.
Hannibal stilled for a moment, Will realized distantly the doctor had tears in his eyes. Strong arms banded beneath Will’s back and lifted. He was drawn up to Hannibal’s chest, crying out at the change in angle as he settled onto Hannibal’s lap. When Hannibal began thrusting again, the new angle went deep, stroking along Will’s prostate with every thrust.
Will clung to Hannibal, moaning as the doctor’s stomach provided dizzying friction for his weeping cock. Hannibal tightened his hold around Will’s chest, it felt as though he was sinking into the man beneath him, becoming one…and maybe that’s what was happening.
Dipping his face to nuzzle against the open bite mark on Hannibal’s shoulder, Will teased his teeth along the torn flesh, encouraging blood to bead up from the wound. It was what he needed, Hannibal’s sweat and blood in his teeth, the sound of the man he loved groaning softly in his ear. Will bit down again and came, his untouched cock spasming between them.
He let himself fall back, Hannibal’s arms supporting him even as the doctor’s thrusts grew erratic. After a few moments, Will’s brain blinked back to life and he was overwhelmed with the need to see Hannibal lost to him. With a shaking hand, Will gathered a bit of his release, holding it to Hannibal’s lips. Hannibal bit at Will’s fingers, feasting like a snapping beast at the offering. He came with a roar, Will’s fingers still snagged between his teeth.
They slumped together — panting, sticky, and serenely happy.
I love you.
Will wasn’t sure if he said it, or if he merely willed the thought into being as he let his head drop to Hannibal’s bloodied shoulder. The doctor must have understood, he murmured back in a language Will didn’t know, but Will could feel it in the tremors of the arms still banded around him, and in the soft licks along his bitten fingers.
“Never move again? I think that’s a great idea.”
Hannibal huffed, this time the nips to his fingers were playful. “You won’t think that when our sweat cools and our release turns tacky.”
“Just…wait.” Will looked up, eyes half-lidded and muscles heavy. “I just want this for a few more minutes.”
“I would happily give you an eternity.”
Will smiled, letting his mind slip beneath the waves. He didn’t have to worry as long as Hannibal held him up.
Will found he liked cooking at 3 am. Hannibal’s kitchen echoed the crisp clang of the whisk as he beat the eggs. There was something elicit about wandering through Hannibal’s domain, using pans and ingredients without permission, wrapping Hannibal’s apron around his boxer-clad frame.
Although, he supposed he did have tacit permission from Hannibal, who had been watching him for at least five minutes. Will hadn’t turned to acknowledge him, but the kitchen was getting cold and Will decided he would rather feel the heat of a body than the weight of a stare.
“It’s nice to use a whisk that isn’t covered in dog hair.” He didn’t turn, but the air in the room shifted as Hannibal approached. Will poured the eggs into the pan, agitating them slightly.
“Let’s try to keep it that way, shall we?” Lips pressed hot and wet to the back of Will’s neck. Will shivered, focusing on the eggs. He’d done this 100 times now; it would be a shame to burn the first meal he’d ever made Hannibal. “Were you still hungry, Will?”
“We did skip dinner.” Will dropped his shoulder to level a small glare at the grinning man behind him. “I’m frankly surprised the great Hannibal Lecter would miss an opportunity to feed anyone.”
“Forgive me,” Hannibal let his chin drop to Will’s shoulder, his body fitted to the younger man’s back. Large hands fitted along Will’s hips, toying with the apron. Will nearly agitated the eggs out of the pan. “I was focused on sating another hunger.”
Will snorted, moving the eggs off the burner to set. “Grab a plate for me and go cut some fresh chives. This will be ready in a few minutes.”
“Yes sir, Chef Graham.” Hannibal’s hands slipped from Will’s waist and the cold crept back up Will’s spine.
Adding another pat of butter, Will began to roll the omelet, carefully nudging the custardy eggs with a spatula. Hannibal returned, quietly sitting a plate by Will’s side. He rolled the eggs onto the plate, expelling a relieved breath when they held their shape. He cut a fresh pat of butter to gloss over the top, then looked to Hannibal, who obediently sprinkled chives over the dish.
“I’m starting to suspect you’re a better cook than you’ve led me to believe.” They settled in the chair in the far corner of the room, Will sprawled across Hannibal’s lap, holding the plate aloft. Hannibal’s thumb absently caressed Will’s knee as the empath sliced a fork through the omelet, offering the bite to Hannibal. “I thought you were hungry?”
“I am, but I’ve got to keep your strength up too.”
Hannibal smiled, sharp teething sinking into offered food and pulling it from the fork. Will watched as the doctor’s eyes fluttered closed. Will loved watching Hannibal taste things, his whole body seemed to come alive as he carefully considered the bite. When he swallowed, Hannibal opened his eyes, a lopsided toothy smile on his face. “Absolutely delicious.”
Will’s whole body suffused with warmth, a pleased shiver in the base of his spine. He grinned through a forkful of buttery eggs. Hannibal smiled when Will held out another bite.
“You enjoy providing for me, don’t you?” His eyes glittered as he took the offered food.
“I like knowing you come to me first.”
Another bite. Another Smile.
Hannibal cocked his head. “Careful, Will, you’re creating expectation.”
“You created the expectation; I’m just helping it flourish.” They ate the last bites in silence, the click of the fork against plate sounding between them.
Hannibal licked the fork clean with a flourish, making Will grin. “Am I to expect you to take over cooking duties? I confess I’m not sure I’m prepared to rewire a broken lamp.”
Will shook his head. “I would never take away your art, Hannibal.”
The doctor stilled; his eyes suddenly sharp. “Wouldn’t you?”
“Never.” Will got up, offering his free hand to Hannibal. “I just thought I’d be in charge of after sex snacks.”
Hannibal grabbed Will’s hand, smile glinting brightly in the kitchen lights. “I fear that means you’ll be cooking more than I.”
Will dropped the plate carelessly on the counter. “I can live with that.”
He took off up the stairs, Hannibal following so close behind he didn’t notice the lock to the pantry had been tampered with.
Sunlight squeezing past a small gap in his curtains finally woke Hannibal up. Usually he was up before the sun, but Will had kept him up until five, so he supposed they both deserved a bit of a lie-in.
“Good mor-” Will’s side of the bed was cold and Hannibal paused. Surely Will wasn’t making another omelet. He listened but couldn’t hear any movement in his home. He considered calling out, but decided against it.
There was likely an explanation. Perhaps he had to tend to the dogs. Hannibal would go downstairs and find a note. Anything else after their night together would be…unforgivably rude.
Dressing quickly in a red sweater and a pair of linen sleep pants, just in case he was able to find Will and lure him back to bed, Hannibal descended the stairs, searching for any sign of life. He smiled when he glanced in the study. The large picture window was tarped, the glass swept up and his knocked over skulls righted on the side table. He was just about to inspect his harpsichord for scratches when he heard a muffled noise and cursing.
Turning to the kitchen, Hannibal paused in the doorway. Six folders sat open on the kitchen island, his kills looking back at him in glossy photos. He ran his fingers along the man in prayer, mind racing as to when Will had retrieved the folders.
Another bang had Hannibal pivoting towards the pantry. He was sure he had locked it — had it been open last night?
When Hannibal saw the trap door open, he took a moment to breathe. He’d prepared for this contingency. He knew there was always a chance he might have to kill Will, just as he had Agent Katz. He’d allow himself to cry while he ate Will’s heart raw, he could afford himself that much release before he’d have to wrap up contingencies at his other home and flee…
Grabbing his scalpel from where it was secured under his sink, Hannibal slipped down the basement stairs on silent bare feet. It was odd to dread a hunt. He comforted himself with the notion that Will would die a worthy death and likely give him a beautiful scar to remember him by.
At the base of the stairs, Hannibal pressed against the far wall, moving through shadows as he watched Will’s blurred form through the plastic curtains. He was so lovely, even obscured by industrial plastic sheeting.
Quietly, Hannibal slipped past the curtains and found…chaos.
Will stood shirtless and panting amidst a swirl of drywall and machinery. He’d pulled Hannibal’s band saw from where it was anchored on the wall and ripped out all the Tuscan tile Hannibal had chosen for the backsplash of his kill room. Currently, the empath was using his crowbar to pull at the sink, ruining the gilded fixtures as he pried it from the wall.
“Couldn’t have just been one fucking room, could it?” Will puffed as the sink finally came free and fell with a clunk to the floor. He turned to Hannibal. “Of course you’d need a whole kill basement. Kill rooms are for peasants.”
Hannibal stilled, his grip faltering on the scalpel. “Will-”
“Oh, are you kidding me?” Will stomped toward Hannibal, shoving the doctor hard. Hannibal let himself be pressed into the wall, staring at Will’s frowning face. “Don’t you dare go all still on me like you’re picking out a recipe. DO YOU KNOW HOW LONG THIS IS GOING TO TAKE ME?”
Hannibal blinked. Will turned, gesturing toward the mess. Hannibal should strike now, should end this.
“It’s gonna take me every fucking bit of three months to get this place looking normal.” Will turned to him, making an annoyed face and batting the scalpel out of Hannibal’s hand. “I was thinking something simple, like a kitchen storage room? Maybe a clubbed basement with an extra wine cellar?”
Will gestured to the refrigerator where a joint of Abel Gideon was curing. “That’s going to have to go, but we can put another fridge in here if you like, make it like a real chef’s pantry?”
Will waved a dismissive hand.
“We can figure that out once I scour the place for blood evidence.” With a sigh, Will tapped his boot on the drain in the floor. “Christ, that’s gonna be fun to tear out.”
Hannibal felt utterly lost. This must be how Frederick Chilton spent the majority of his days. No wonder the man was so unpleasant. “Will, what are you pro-”
“You can’t be the Ripper anymore, Hannibal.”
Hannibal raised his chin. “I’m not-”
Will was in Hannibal’s face in a flash, snarling as he held up the crowbar. “If you finish that sentence you better kill me, because I swear to God I’ll knock the teeth out of your head if you lie to me while I’m doing this.”
“And what, precisely, are you doing, Will?”
“Just because I told Jack in my expert opinion you aren’t the Ripper, doesn’t mean that he won’t get a bug up his ass and get a warrant one day.” Will shrugged. “He was pretty pissed I wasted so much government money only to exonerate-”
“You exonerated me?” Hannibal shifted his weight trying to rebalance. This wasn’t their game. This wasn’t the game he thought he was playing at all.
Will smiled. “Unless you want to correct me and make a formal confession, I filed an official report yesterday recanting my suspicions. The timelines for the kills are impossible considering the schedules we know you keep. You’d need some type of murder basement filled with butchering tools and blood drains for that to be possible.”
Will looked around the room. Hannibal focused on deep, even breaths.
“Plus I’ve been in several rooms of your house and found nothing odd, certainly no scalpels taped under tables and sinks.” Will shrugged. “I explained it to Alana when she came over the other night.”
Hannibal’s lip curled. Will raised an eyebrow. “Guess you hung up before that part?”
“Here’s the thing.” Will leaned next to Hannibal, staring at the ruins of the kill room. “If I start fucking you, Jack or Alana will start wondering. I know they’re trusting, but they’re not fools.”
“That is a thing, indeed.”
“So, I need you to go upstairs and look at your profile. Consider the crime scenes and the resources needed. Then, you’re going to pick a new Ripper.” Will turned, thumping Hannibal in the chest with the crowbar. “A real one this time, not fucking Chilton.”
Hannibal huffed. “That was perfectly-”
“It was petty.” Will rolled his eyes. “Worse, it was lazy. No one competent would ever believe Frederick Chilton was the Chesapeake Ripper, the man threw a public tantrum when he wasn’t invited to your dinner party.”
Hannibal smiled. “That’s why I withheld the invitation.”
Will snapped in Hannibal’s face. “I need you to focus on something that isn’t how clever you are — just this once, I promise.”
Hannibal glared, but remained silent. Will nodded to himself.
“Go upstairs, write me a decent profile of someone who could believably be the Ripper. When you’re done, I’ll join you and we can figure out how I can come to that conclusion and present it to Jack.”
“And then, I’ll start investigating this suspect. I’ll provoke them a bit, tell Jack I feel threatened…” Will waved the crowbar in front of himself as if conducting his fantasy sequence. “And then I disappear.”
“Oh my, how horrible.”
Will hummed. “Heartbreaking. Jack will get a warrant, Jimmy and Z will find evidence in the new suspect’s house, and my last earthly act as Will Graham will be to catch the Ripper.”
Both men stared silently for a moment before Hannibal snarled at a sharp jab to his ribs.
“DO NOT fuck Alana at my funeral.”
“I’m fucking serious. I will turn you into the Chesapeake Limper if you fucking touch her again.”
Hannibal straightened himself. “And what shall I be doing after your funeral?”
Will cocked his head. “Tragic really, this whole episode will be too much for you. You’ll need a fresh start. Somewhere warm and with a beach. You’ll adopt all my dogs and move-”
“All of them?”
“All of them, Hannibal.”
“What if I found excellent homes for-”
The crowbar was back, tapping along Hannibal’s bitten shoulder. “EVERY. SINGLE. DOG.”
“Winston doesn’t care for me.”
“You’ll both live.” Will lowered the crowbar. “You sell this house and you get us a small, unassuming little one-bedroom th-”
Will scoffed. “Hannibal, after this is done, I’m not going to be apart from you.”
“I know.” Hannibal pressed his lips together. “We’ll need a second bedroom.”
He studied Will for a moment before taking his last leap. “It seems I may be able to help you convincingly fake a death.”
Will squinted, then his face went slack. The crowbar clattered to the ground. “You- she…but I threw up her…I-”
“One can live without an ear, Will,” Hannibal said gently.
Will froze in place, eyes unseeing, breath caught in his throat. After a few beats he lunged, shoving Hannibal hard into the concrete wall.
“I’m-” Will kissed Hannibal hard, more of a headbutt than an affectionate gesture.
“Fucking-” Another kiss, this one with a bite. Hannibal felt his knees turning weak.
“Furious about this.” The final kiss was longer, with less teeth. Hannibal pressed into it, making a small noise when Will licked into his mouth. When they pulled apart, Will’s brow was still furrowed. “We’re going to have a talk about open communication when this is finished.”
Hannibal’s eyes narrowed. “I will not withhold children if you won’t withhold your involvement in police investigations against me.”
Will sighed. “I think we need to base this relationship on sex for a little bit, ‘til we figure the rest out.”
“Can I see her soon?”
“That may be too dangerous, but I’m sure she’d love it if you joined me when I called her this afternoon.”
Will nodded. “We have a lot to talk about.”
“We do.” Hannibal stole another kiss, smiling softly when Will leaned into it. “I’ll go prepare some food and see if I can find you a Ripper to catch.”
“Thanks darlin’, I’ll be down here if you need me.”
Hannibal grinned when Will swatted him on the ass as he turned to leave.
Hannibal lured Will upstairs three hours later with a Croque Madame and the promise of a shoulder rub. The empath emerged from Hannibal’s pantry lair caked in grime with a dusting of drywall in his curls. Hannibal had never seen anything more beautiful.
He pressed Will against the wine rack, grinding lightly against the smaller man as he licked the salt from his skin. Will laughed, pushing at Hannibal’s chest.
“After I’ve eaten!” Hannibal relented, his drive to feed Will was nearly as powerful as his drive to fuck him.
Will moaned lightly as he bit into the sandwich. “Fuck, you’re fantastic, you know that?
Hannibal preened under Will’s smile.
“So,” Will asked as he chewed another mouthful. “Found any good candidates?”
“One.” Hannibal smiled. “Have you ever heard of the Vergers?”