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Perfect Little Lioness

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You haven't seen him since your dad's funeral. They buried him at dawn, on a Wednesday – Will wanted to make it as much of a pain in the ass as possible for people to come, so that they wouldn't feel guilty for refusing. Your father was a good man, but not a particularly sociable one. Will knew this, better than you did at the time. Now that you're older, you can understand.

Will's grown up to be more like dad. He's reclusive and lives in the middle of a field with a bunch of dogs. They bark and rush up to you as you park your car behind his and get out, feet crunching into the snow. He's standing on the porch, whiskey in hand. He's barefoot, so he doesn't come forward to greet you, but his smile is warm and familiar, affectionate as always as he slings an arm around your shoulders and presses a kiss to your hair.

"Good drive?" he asks. He smells like dad did – whiskey and smoke even though neither of them smoke; engine oil and dogs. The red-blooded American male right out of a poster from the gold rush. You hug him back tightly and nod against his shoulder, for a minute simply taking stock of how different it feels to hug him as an adult.

It's been almost three years, which isn't a long time for some. You went out West, he went East. No hard feelings. But he used to be the only thing that would check under the bed for monsters and the person who paid the bills and got the groceries, who warned you against watching scary movies when you were eleven but decided you might as well when you were fifteen. The world wasn't going to be any worse than that.

"That all you have?" he asks, arching a brow just like dad did, when you'd try and convince him that you should have dessert before dinner. You can understand why – all you have is your car, what fits in it, and the shirt on your back. Will inherited dad's settler side. You got the nomad.

"I can get everything later," you say, shoving the strap of your duffle higher on your shoulder. Will's dogs are snuffling at your car and your shoes.

He presses his lips together, but doesn't argue. You both go inside. There's a mattress by the door that you assume is for you, and a couch, and the rest of the house stretches on like a maze you're not allowed to enter yet. There is a huge pile of dog beds by the fireplace, two of which are occupied – one by a little terrier, brown and white, the other an older and bored-looking mastiff mix.

Before you can drop your bag on the bed, Will gestures to the stairs. "I made a room up for you," he says. You tilt your head, confused.

"This isn't for me?" you ask, gesturing to the mattress.

Will's brow creases, like the mere suggestion isn't something he would have thought a normal person would make. "No," he finally says. "I made up the master. You'll have your own bathroom and everything." He tilts his head. "I sleep down here normally. This is my bed."

You'd almost forgotten how weird your big brother is. But it's kind of nice, thinking about him guarding the door. "Alright, thanks," you say, stepping past him.

"Second door on the left," he calls behind you. "Spare blankets and shit in the closet. You hungry?"

"I could eat."

"I'll make something." And that's that – he walks away and disappears out of sight, and you ascend the stairs. Never a man of many words, your brother, and that clearly hasn't gotten any better living on his own with only dogs for company.

On the second floor, there is a short hallway with four doors in total. One leads to a bathroom, a second to a room Will clearly uses to store all his stuff, even though he doesn't sleep here. There are dressers and Ikea bookshelves. You can see things that clearly came from dad's house, still in boxes, enough dust on them to suggest they haven't been touched since he brought them up here.

The third door is just a closet, and the fourth is the master bedroom. You go inside, smiling at the militant showroom look of the room. It's bare of decoration, with a wooden floor and white walls, as though it hasn't been touched since it was photographed for sale. There's a bathroom attached with a big tub and showerhead attached on a hose to the wall, nothing in the cabinets or drawers.

You throw your bag on the perfectly made bed, laughing at the precision cut of the duvet tuck. Will isn't a cop anymore, and your father retired from the military soon after you were born, but old habits die hard.

The drive was long, but you're wired on caffeine and there's still sunlight outside, so you resist the urge to sleep. Besides, Will implied food, and that's definitely something you could use after gas station protein packs and bags on bags of junk food.

You go to the bathroom and wash your face and hands, redo your hair so it's out of your face, and take off your shoes, tucking them beneath the bed. Heading downstairs, you pause once you're on the bottom step, hearing another car approaching.

Will is in the kitchen; he likely didn't hear it. Frowning, you go to the front window, and see a very nice, expensive car pulling up beside yours. The engine dies, and from the car emerges a tall man, finely dressed and wrapped in a long, thick winter coat. His hair is slicked back on his head in a perfect coif, his skin darker than yours and Will's, hinting at time in the sun.

He turns and approaches the house, and you open the door without thinking.

He looks up, and you can feel your eyes widening, a little trill of something warm in the back of your skull – like anxiety, or excitement. The feeling of turning a corner and seeing a flash of deer eyes in your headlights, praying they don't run into the road. This man, whoever he is, moves with a measured gait, his sharp features and dark eyes making you think of hunting cats and too-quiet swamps.

He walks up the steps, as though he expected you to be there. There's no surprise or any hint on his face that this is out of the ordinary. Maybe Will isn't as isolated as you thought. "Hello," he greets, his accent thick and foreign, his voice low. Another little shiver settles at the base of your spine.

"Evening," you reply.

"Forgive me," the man says. "I didn't realize Will had guests."

"Oh, um -." You clear your throat, and offer your hand, pleased when it doesn't shake. His hand is cool to the touch, soft, fingers slightly callused. Not like Will's, or dad's were. You give him your name, and add; "Will's my brother. I'm staying with him for a while."

You can hear Will behind you, and step to one side. His eyes meet the stranger's, and you're glad to see that he's not defensive. He's comfortable in the presence of this man, which is good, because he makes you feel like something caught in a trap, a helpless mouse trembling while the fox circles it, deciding whether to bite.

"Hello, Doctor Lecter."

A doctor. That would explain the state of his hands.

"Good evening Will," Doctor Lecter replies with an easy smile. It shows the edge of sharp, uneven teeth. Fangs. Makes his eyes crinkle at the corners. "You missed your appointment and didn't answer your phone."

You're surprised to see Will's cheeks color guiltily.

"Though now, I can see why," Lecter adds, his eyes sliding to you with another courteous nod.

"Right." You've never seen Will acting like this, flustered and guilty. It occurs to you that this man is someone Will likes, that he admires enough to feel bad about inconveniencing.

"Appointment?" you echo.

Will's eyes dart to yours, and he smiles, lopsided, more like a grimace. "Hannibal is my -." He stops.

"Friend," Doctor Lecter – Hannibal – says with another smile. "One that perhaps holds an overabundance of concern for your brother." His smile turns, for a moment, slightly sheepish, and it's endearing to see.

"We were just going to have dinner," Will offers. "You can stay if you'd like."

Hannibal shakes his head. "No, Will, that's quite alright. I'll leave you and your sister to get settled in and reacquainted. Perhaps, you'd be willing to accept a dinner invitation tomorrow, so that we can all get to know each other better."

Will smiles, looking relieved. "That sounds good." He looks to you. "If you're up for it."

"Sure," you say, rasping the words.

"It was a pleasure to meet you," Hannibal murmurs. The way he purrs your name makes your fingers curl. "I'll see you both tomorrow at seven." And with that, he turns and leaves. You can't help how you watch him move, the broad spread of his shoulders beneath his coat, his even and measured footsteps as he navigates the uneven ground and the curious nosing of your brother's dogs. He slides into his car, turns it, and drives away.

You swallow, and close the door.

"Sorry about that," Will says when you turn to look at him. "Hannibal's…the kind of guy who drives an hour and a half in the snow to check on his friends."

"He's your therapist?" you ask, following Will into the kitchen as the oven beeps.

"Unofficially," Will replies, with an edge that warns you from prying further. "Had some…stuff happen at work. Mandated therapy appointments before I could go back out into the field." He opens the oven and slides on a heat protector, pulling out leftover shepherd's pie and setting it on top of the stove. "Then we kind of just…kept meeting."

"He seems nice," you say, for lack of anything else.

Will nods, pressing his lips together. "He is nice," he says. "He…gets me. I guess that's his job." He laughs, to himself, and rolls his eyes. "But anyway, he's also a fantastic cook. You're in for a treat tomorrow."

He says that like he's been invited to dinner often. You've always trusted your brother's instincts and assessments of people – if Will likes Hannibal enough to eat his food and be his friend, he's probably a decent enough person.

And, well, there's something to be said for the view.

You feel heat on your face and hope Will doesn't notice. If he does, he doesn't comment on it. You both eat at the little table by the front window until, finally, the long trip catches up with you. Stifling a yawn to the back of your hand, you bid him a good night, and go upstairs.

The water pressure is fantastic and the water comes out scalding hot in the shower. It's wonderful to wash the stickiness of the open road off your skin, combing your fingers through your hair and face tilted up under the spray.

The bed calls to you like a siren and you flop into it after pulling on a too-big t-shirt – Will's, a long time ago – and underwear. The mattress is a little on the firm side and the pillows are thin, but stacking three of them up properly does the trick. You listen to the fan continue whirring from the bathroom door. The curtains are pulled closed, so you can only see the faint outline of the moon, and the glow of it from behind the fabric.

You sigh, considering the dinner invitation. Coming to stay with Will is one of those things you both promise would happen more often, but the stars rarely align. You haven't seen him in three years, but you've come to stay for the night before while he's been at work, missing each other just barely. Will's hours and unpredictable and your sleep schedule even more so. Sometimes you just show up, sometimes you're only in town for a night and stay in a hotel because Will is off somewhere sniffing out murderers. He has an eye for that sort of thing.

You're good at reading people, too – whichever parent you both got that from, you both did. It's good to have when gas stations and truck stops are usually where you sleep and you need to know if a mobile home plot owner is going to give you grief for parking your car there, or if your landlord is a piece of shit and it's worth signing a six-month lease or month to month, or if someone's going to get handsy in a way that will earn them broken fingers.

Doctor Lecter is…intriguing. He doesn't seem like the kind of person Will would be friends with unless forced to, which makes sense, you admit, considering how they met. But Will doesn't just let people show up at his house, and the familiar way Hannibal had parked and trotted up the drive like this is something he just does, suggests he's done it before. That he's comfortable around your brother, and Will is comfortable around him.

The way he'd moved, too. That's something you keep coming back to. He prowls. You've seen that kind of thing often but never in the shape of a man who moves so well inside his own skin. Under that coat, the suit just visible beneath, the slick hair and cordial smile, he's got the strength and grace of one of the real big cats.

You press your lips and thighs together, toes of one foot curling behind your calf muscle, fingers digging beneath the pillows as you shift your weight. How might he move, you wonder, in his own home? His own territory, making food good enough even Will sings its praises? He seems like a wine-drinker – bartending pays the bills in the cities you stay in for longer than a month, and it's good to read what people's poison of choice is. He seems like the kind of person who'll have an interesting home.

These thoughts lull you to sleep, combined with a solid low-grade thrum of heat in your stomach that you try to pretend is simply satisfaction at the big homecooked meal.



Morning dawns with the sound of barking dogs and the scent of coffee. You rise, groaning as the stiffness of driving for upwards of eleven hours makes itself known. You pull your arm across your chest until your shoulder pops, and sigh in relief, sliding out of bed to use the bathroom and get ready for the day.

Once you're dressed, you find Will is already shrugging on his coat. He fixes you with an apologetic smile. "Work," he offers, though you didn't ask. You tilt your head and wonder if therapy has made him more inclined to share pieces of his thoughts. He pulls his coat on and tugs the sleeves down, before running a hand over the back of his neck. "There's coffee and food in the fridge. The dogs will whine if they need to go out and they'll come back if you call for them."

You nod. "Are you coming back before we head out to dinner?"

He winces. "I probably won't be able to make it here," he replies. "I'm headed up to Maryland. But I can text you Hannibal's address. There's plenty of parking by his place."

"Alright." You hesitate, then say; "What should I wear?"

He looks at you, as though this was a question he had never personally considered, and then down at himself. If he's coming from work, he'll probably just wear that there. He shrugs. "Something nice?" he half-asks.

You roll your eyes. "Sure."

"I'll be back soon as I can, and if not, I'll see you at dinner." You nod, and smile as he sweeps you into another one-armed hug, before heading out. The coffee is calling your name and you go to the kitchen, pouring yourself a cup and rooting around for milk and sugar. It tastes a little stale and more bitter than you normally like, but it's caffeine and if there's one thing a nomad knows, it's how precious stimulants are.

Your phone chimes upstairs, and you go to see he's given you Hannibal's address. A quick maps search tells you it'll be an hour at least, and your eyes widen. Doctor Lecter must be a fantastically good cook to warrant that drive just for dinner.

The thought brings another nervous flutter to your belly, fingers curling around your warm mug as you settle back down at the table, looking out to the field around Will's house.

Another phone chime draws your attention. It's a second text from Will, with a phone number; "Hannibal's number. If you need directions or something."

You press your lips together, considering. Will isn't going to be particularly helpful in regards to what to wear or if you should bring anything. You should bring something, it's only polite. It's mid-morning now; Doctor Lecter is probably awake.

You pull up the number and call.

"Good morning, this is Doctor Lecter."

His low, accented voice makes that flutter get slightly worse, for a moment. It's somehow so much more powerful, rumbling into your ear. Your thighs tighten again and you set your coffee mug down. "Good morning," you reply, introducing yourself with your name. "Will's sister. We met yesterday."

"Yes." His voice, if possible, seems to get lower. Purring. Probably just your imagination. "A pleasure to speak to you again. How may I help you?"

"I just -. Was wondering if I should bring anything," you murmur. "And if there's a -. Dress code."

He pauses, and the silence is like waiting for a cat to lunge. It spears you in place, glues you to the chair, your toes curling and bare heels sliding against the legs of it. "I like my guests to be comfortable," he finally replies. "You needn't feel like you need to dress up for me."

And yet, as soon as he says it, that's exactly what you want to do.

"Regarding bringing something, I assure you, everything can be taken care of on my end." He pauses again, and you can hear him smiling; "Merely bring your company, and an empty stomach."

You can't help laughing, and it's somewhat breathy. "I can do that."

"Excellent." He purrs that word, and it sends a shock right down your spine. "I'm very much looking forward to it. Have a pleasant rest of your day."

"You too," you say, and hang up, setting your phone down. Your cheeks are warm and your fingers are a little shaky.

You rise, checking that the dogs are fed and watered, and return the coffee mug to the sink. You need to go shopping.



It's ten minutes to seven when you pull down Doctor Lecter's street. The houses are a row of large, pristinely kept brownstones, all within their little haven of perfectly manicured lawns and butterfly bushes. Hannibal's own home glows with a welcoming light as you park and get out of the car.

Your hands flatten down the line of your dress, checking for creases. You're used to dressing up for bar nights, because cleavage gets good tips. The night is cold and the chill air runs over your bare legs and your neck, where your coat doesn't cover.

You shiver, sliding your hands into the pockets of your thin coat, looking around. Will's car isn't here yet, and you find yourself frowning. Hopefully he doesn't make a habit of being late.

As if your thoughts summoned him, your phone rings. It's Will. "Hey," you greet. "I'm at Hannibal's house already. Are you nearby?"

Will makes a gruff, annoyed noise. "I'm not going to make it," he says. "I've already called Hannibal to tell him. Jack's got me staying late." He pauses, and adds; "There were a lot of bodies."

"That…sucks," you say weakly, even as your eyes lift to the dark door and the warmly lit windows. The idea of being alone with Doctor Lecter makes it a lot easier to ignore the chill in the air.

"Yeah, I'm sorry. Have a good night anyway," Will says. "Call me when you're on your way home."


He hangs up, leaving you alone with the promise of what lies beyond that door. You pocket your phone and walk up the steps, a little unsteady in your heels. It's been a while since you wore them, but Hannibal is tall, and it's been a long time since you've been around anyone that warrants wearing them. You knock on the door and shiver in the cold, and then again when you hear measured footsteps approaching.

The door swings open, revealing Doctor Lecter. He's dressed in a suit, a silver color, with a grey waistcoat and tie, a swirl of pattern in a paisley pocket square. He greets you with a smile. "Right on time. Please, come in."

You step in, and he takes your coat for you, large hands spreading out on your shoulders as you slide the garment off and he hangs it. Whatever he's cooking smells delicious, making your mouth water. "I'm given to understand it'll just be the two of us, tonight," he says, and you're sure it's not meant to be as flirtatious as it sounds.

Still, your cheeks heat. "Sounds like," you reply.

"A pity; I do enjoy Will's company. But I'm sure we can find a way to entertain ourselves without him." He smiles, and leads the way into the house, down the short hallway that's all dark wooden floors and rich green paint, into the dining room. It's set out plainly – likely, you think, because Will is a simple man who doesn't appreciate flare. The giant table is solid, dark wood, the placemats a dark red like old blood, framed with shining silverware and wine and water glasses.

"Please, have a seat," Hannibal says, gesturing to the spot on the right of the head of the table. You go, and he pulls the chair out for you, tucking it neatly beneath you as you sit. "Do you have a wine preference?"

"Not really," you reply. "I'm not enough of a wine person to have a preference."

He considers that, and then nods with a smile. "Something subtle, then," he murmurs, and moves away to a small table behind the head seat. It gives you the chance to admire him more openly, without the thick coat in the way. He's broad-shouldered, thick in the torso, his clothes clinging to him like hands. Probably tailored and perfectly cut to his shape.

He expertly unties and uncorks a bottle of wine, and turns. You snap your gaze away immediately, flushing when you feel his eyes on you. He approaches, and leans down to take your wine glass, tucking the rim to the lip of the bottle and pouring it over half full.

You can't help but smile. "You're confident I'll like it," you say, as he sets the glass down.

He answers your smile with one of his own, lips pulling to show the edge of his teeth, eyes crinkling at the corners. His hair isn't as slicked back as it was yesterday, and a few strands dare to fall in front of his eyes. "If you don't," he promises, "I have other options."

The oven timer dings in another room, and he straightens, wrapping the wine in a white cloth and setting it in a bucket of ice in the center of the table. "One moment," he says, with a bow of his head, and leaves the room.

You reach out to take the wine, bringing it to your lips for a test. It's crisp and sweet, sharp on the aftertaste, a pale golden color. It's quite good, really, and the idea of him knowing what will suit your tastes so well makes that nervous flutter start in your stomach again.

Your eyes trail around the room, taking in the horde of antlers on the mantlepiece, framing the portrait hanging over the fireplace. You blink in surprise, and stifle a laugh at what it is – how graphic, Doctor Lecter. What an icebreaker.

He returns with two plates, and sets them down in your spots. Dinner is an offering of thick slices of meat – pork, you guess, from the smell – with a brilliant red sauce, and puffy, steaming potatoes dripping with butter and sprinkled with red flakes and black pepper. Framing those is a ring of roasted vegetables, with another drip of red sauce. It smells just as good as it looks.

Hannibal watches you as you take your first bite. The meat is juicy and melts on your tongue, combined with the gentle heat of the potatoes, and the tart sauce, it's an explosion of flavor that you find yourself savoring before you swallow.

"Will wasn't lying," you say, chasing it with more of the sweet wine. Hannibal smiles, preening. "You're an incredible cook. Did you study somewhere?"

"A combination of teachers and my own indulgences," Hannibal replies. "I cook most of my meals myself."

"I can see why," you reply with a smile. "Best thing I've tasted in years."

He hums, still smiling, eating as you do. After a while, he breaks the silence again; "You'll have to forgive me. I didn't even know Will had a sister."

You smile. "He didn't tell me he had a psychiatrist, so I guess that makes us even."

He laughs at that, a low, throaty thing that makes your fingers curl around your fork and knife. "I suppose," he concedes with another warm smile. "But I also learned that your father died quite young. Did Will raise you?"

"Are you asking me because Will didn't tell you?" you reply, challenging. You like the thought of challenging him, of seeing if you can make him laugh more. He doesn't seem like the kind of person who openly laughs very much. Too put together to let such an emotion overwhelm him.

His dark eyes gleam with something close to pride. "And if I am?"

"It's my history too. I don't mind sharing it," you say, around another bite of food. "It's true. Mom ran off after I was born, dad died when I was a teenager. Will took over, until I was old enough to figure things out on my own."

Hannibal hums. "Will has often displayed paternal instincts. Until now, it was a mystery as to where they came from."

"He took care of me," you say. Then, "He did his best."

You couldn't explain the shift in Hannibal, when you say that, but it's there. A very subtle tilt of his head, a spark in his eyes, something curious just behind them. But he's staring at you openly like some intriguing new species of animal, and it's hard to control your blush when you understand that he won't blink first.

You look away, and swallow another mouthful of wine. "What about you?" you ask.

"I became self-sufficient far too young," Hannibal replies mildly, sipping at his own glass. "I daresay we have that in common." There's nothing to say to that, so you nod. The warm food and good wine is relaxing, and you tuck a strand of hair behind your ear. "Do you live in the area?"

"No. Just visiting," you reply.

Hannibal hums. "Pity."

You swallow at that.

"But I'm in no hurry to leave."

He smiles, as though you just told him a joke. "I'm glad to hear it," he replies. Adds, carefully; "Will could use some consistent company, I think. And he loves you dearly."

Your brows rise.

"I may have only just met you, my dear, but I've known Will for a while. Noticing changes in behavior is a necessary part of my relationship with him."

"Noticing changes in behavior is part of your job," you correct, ignoring the way your entire body shivers at the words 'My dear'. He blinks, slowly, like a sunning cat, and nods. He smiles, sometimes, in a way that is more a shine in his eyes than a curl of his mouth.

"Yes," he says. "It is."

Again, that speared feeling grips you, makes it suddenly feel like the room is far too warm and the air too difficult to breathe. You clear your throat, pushing your hair back from your neck, one leg folding over the other in an attempt to calm yourself.

Hannibal's head tilts. Again, that subtle change. He breathes in like he's savoring you instead of the smell of the food. Like they're one and the same. The heat on your face and the tension in your stomach is getting too powerful to ignore, and you shift your weight, and take another sip of wine.

The silence stretching between you is companionable, but charged. It feels like Hannibal is waiting for you to say something, but any attempt at conversation dies on your tongue. So you continue to eat, and he eats with you, until the plates are empty. "That was delicious," you say again, wishing you could come up with something more original for a compliment.

He smiles, taking your plate. "I hope you saved room for dessert," he replies, and disappears out of the room. You drum your nails against the stem of the wine glass and cross your legs the other way, breathing in deep to try and calm yourself down. This is Will's friend, his therapist, and while he might be the singularly most attractive man you've ever seen, you need to behave and not make a fool of yourself.

Hannibal returns with two smaller plates, setting them down. It's a small chocolate torte, ringed with dusts of powdered sugar and has the scent of mint wafting up from the warm mound. When you take a bite, liquid chocolate fills your mouth, spilling from the inside.

You sigh quietly. "Again, delicious," you say, earning another warm smile from him.

"I'm pleased you like it," he replies. The wine complements the dessert nicely, the subtle tartness making the chocolate all the more sweeter. When it's finished, your stomach is pleasantly full and there's a nice buzz starting in the back of your throat, warming your chest. You'll be okay to drive – Grahams have a nice cruise control settling with a buzz that makes them operate even better after a couple of drinks.

When that is finished, the absence of something to do with your hands makes you nervously curl them in your lap. "Would you like a nightcap?" Hannibal offers. "I have some port I've been meaning to open, but it's a social drink, so I've been saving it."

"I think I should decline," you reply, wondering if he might push the subject. Men, especially older men, have a habit of playfully coaxing young women like you to drink more. "I still need to drive home, after all."

"Of course," Hannibal says, inclining his head. "Perhaps another time."

You nod, and rise when he pulls back your chair and follows you to the door. He takes your coat and holds it out for you, letting you slide your arms into the sleeves. His hands flatten on your shoulders, warm and wide, a touch so gentle it's almost like being held by smoke. You shiver, getting the scent of him; the smell of the dinner he offered, the sweet chocolate and wine clinging to his lips, his cologne that is far more expensive than the likes you're used to, and the subtle aftertaste of ink and paper and warm, welcoming studies where men of high esteem sit.

You turn, and meet his eyes. This close, the red hues of them are more pronounced, like old blood mixed into damp earth. "Thank you for dinner, Doctor Lecter," you say, breathlessly.

He smiles. "Thank you for providing such engaging company," he replies. He doesn't move away, and you don't want him to. The door is behind you, you merely need reach back and open it, but you don't. Even in your heels, you have to tilt your head up to look at him, and he's so large and absolute, comfortable in his own home.

You clear your throat, and put a hand on his arm, which is strong, muscled. He's big enough to pick you up with ease, to pin you down. You lean up and in to kiss his cheek and he turns his head, capturing your mouth instead.

A noise escapes you, breathy and quiet, and then a louder moan when he gently takes you by the back of your neck and presses you against the door. You gasp, hand tightening on his arm, clutching at his waist as he steps forward and pins you to the door. His lips are soft, just an edge of teeth teasing your lower lip before he tightens his hand in your hair and deepens the kiss, sharing the taste of chocolate and meat.

A moan sticks in the base of your throat, your heart fluttering as his other hand flattens on your hip, thumb dragging along the seam of your dress, fingers spread wide and curling, so it rises up your thigh. You tremble, all the way down your spine, and pull him closer helplessly, gasping when he breaks the kiss and rests your foreheads together.

No one has kissed you like that in your life. You make a weak, desperate noise, head tilted up to seek another. He smiles, and obeys the silent plea, his fingers gentle on the nape of your neck, knotted in your hair, his other hand subtly guiding your hips against him, parted and warm, your dress wrinkling beneath his grip and between your legs.

You gasp when you feel the evidence that he, too, is affected, a thick line of pressure between your legs that makes you want to rut and grab harder. So you do – Doctor Lecter doesn't seem like the kind of person to deny someone what they want.

He breaks the second kiss again with a low, throaty rumble, and kisses below your ear, down your flushed neck as you cling to his shoulder and close your eyes, panting against the collar of his shirt as he slowly worms his fingers under the hem of your dress, hiking it up to the crease of your thigh. His fingers skate like nails, inward, assured but slow, giving you a chance to push him away.

You don't, of course. Why would you want to?

"Oh, God," you whisper, clenching your eyes tightly shut as he rubs two fingers over where you've started to soak through your underwear, and it sounds so loud, the friction sending little sparks of sensation up your spine. You gasp as he pushes the fabric to one side, giving him open access to where you're slick and sensitive.

He makes another low sound, like a predator that's set his sights on his next meal. He breathes in, and fuck, he was scenting you before. He sounds like he's going to eat you alive.

He lifts his head and kisses you, swallowing the low moan you make as he rubs his fingers between slick flesh, finds the swollen and eager nub of your clit and twists his hand, thumb brushing lightly over it. Testing your sensitivity, your reactions. You suck in a breath and spread your legs wider, nails digging into his shoulders.

He smiles against your mouth, his lashes low and his eyes so dark they're black. "Good girl," he purrs, and you gasp, eyes wide. His smile is sharp, knowing, and he steps up close to make you tilt your head up, foreheads touching, as he keeps rubbing slow, teasing circles around your clit, his fingers petting over your entrance. As if he needs any help; you're so wet you feel like it's dripping down your thighs. "Spread your feet a little wider for me, darling."

You obey, moaning weakly when he smiles at you, approving and fond. He kisses you and it feels like a reward, and even better when, so slowly it's like the first light of dawn, he pushes a finger inside you, curling it as his thumb rubs over your clit. The shiver that runs down your spine is so strong you sag against him, using him to remain upright.

"Fuck," you whisper, breathing hard as he kisses you with teeth, his tongue curling like his finger does. The thought of his lips on you, how he might fall to his knees and eat you out just like this, makes your muscles clench around his finger, hips rutting shamelessly against his hand.

He shushes you, another low rumble in his throat as he breathes you in, eyes black and lips red and slick from your mouth. He curls his finger and rubs at a sensitive place that makes you feel full and empty all at once, desperate for more. The saddle of his thumb and flat of his palm pushes your flesh apart so he can press deeper, thumb moving faster as you stare at him. You're trapped, pinned, and would rather be nowhere else.

You can't look away. His eyes are on your face, cataloging every reaction, every flutter of lashes and the way your breath hitches when he rubs tight circles over the very tip of your clit, the pressure so light and teasing, making you ache. You moan, tipping your head back when he so gently works a second finger in, sliding deeper, more pressure on your insides where you feel so swollen and sensitive.

"Look at me," he whispers, his other hand in your hair, tugging gently. You do, now so unsteady he essentially holding you up with his fingers inside you, your knees refusing to lock, ankles weak, thighs shaking.

He smiles. "Good girl," he purrs, and kisses you deeply, hand moving from your nape to the side of your neck, thumb under your jaw like he's measuring your pulse, then down to tease the curve of your neck, pushing the collar of your coat down to give him room to kiss and nip the flushed, sensitive skin. He's so close, it feels like every inch of your bodies is touching, his cock hard and seeking subtle friction against your thigh. "You're beautiful like this. You deserve to be worshipped, every moment of the day."

You bite your lower lip, face pressed on his shoulder, stomach tensing. When he adds pressure with his thumb, you sag against him, clutching desperately at his shoulders as he works you closer and closer to orgasm. It seems he's done with teasing, as the pressure doesn't relent, neither does the rhythm of his fingers. You can hear how wet you are, feel his knuckles grow slick between your thighs.

"Please," you gasp, fingers curling in the back of his suit jacket. "Please, Doctor Lecter -."

He laughs, right into your ear, and nips just beneath. "I think we're on more intimate terms than that, princess."

Oh, God.

"That's it." His voice is lower, like a predator's growl, making every inch of you tremble. You're so close, you know you're not going to be able to hold back. He straightens his fingers inside you and starts to move them, mimicking slow, powerful thrusts, and you think about what it would feel to have his cock inside you, or his tongue on you, or his teeth. He breathes in raggedly and lets out a sound like a starving animal. "I have you, darling. You're doing so well."

You bite his shoulder and whimper as you start to bear down, shuddering and gasping, your orgasm hitting you so hard it brings tears to your eyes. His fingers keep moving, carefully and perfectly pulling every clench and wave as you come, hips rocking helplessly down against his hand.

He moans as well, his nails catching just for a moment on your neck before he kisses your pulse. "Beautiful," he whispers, his fingers going still, thumb having mercy on your sensitive clit, merely resting now, letting you rut as you please. It takes a while before you can figure out how to make your knees lock.

He pulls his fingers out a moment later as though reluctant to remove them, and the sheer amount of slick on them makes you blush deeply. He pulls your underwear back into place and kisses you again, and gives you a small, satisfied smile, his eyes still black, still ravenous.

Your gaze drops to his unsatisfied arousal, and you bite your lower lip again, reaching out to flatten a hand on it. "I can -."

"No, darling," he purrs, and gently takes your hand, lifting it to his mouth to kiss your knuckles. "That was a wonderful gift for me. There's no need to do more."

You frown. "But I want to," you say.

"The hour is late," he reminds you with another smile. "But perhaps you'd be willing to have lunch with me tomorrow. We will have more time, then."

A shiver runs through you, powerful as an aftershock, and you nod. "You have my number," you say, and he bows his head and kisses your hand again, and then your mouth, one more promising thing you know you're going to think about later tonight.

He walks you to your car and you can still see your mess on his hand. He even opens the door for you like a proper gentlemen, and doesn't close the door to his home until you turn the corner and are out of sight.



Will is home when you get there, and he takes one look at you from his place on the porch, and snorts into his tumbler of whiskey. "Had a good night?" he asks.

You blush, not quite guilty per se, but your sex life – or lack thereof – is not something you readily share with your older brother. "I did, as a matter of fact," you reply. You move past him, and hesitate at the door. "Is that alright?"

Will looks at you, brow creased like he didn't expect the question. Finally, he smiles, and looks away again. "He's a good guy," he says. "You could do worse. I know he's not going to…." He trails off, and clears his throat. "He'll treat you right. Just promise me you'll be careful and don't get knocked up or something."

You huff, rolling your eyes. "Duly noted. Goodnight."

"Night," he replies, his eyes still on the dark shape of your car parked behind his. You go upstairs to your room and, because it seems like the right thing to do, take out your phone and text Hannibal that you've made it home safely.

"Thank you for letting me know," his text reads. "Have a wonderful night, princess. I'll see you tomorrow." A following text has a time and address, and you smile to yourself, another giddy flush of pleasure at the pet name flooding your belly with warmth. You can't remember the last time you looked forward to something this much.



Hannibal's office is just as intimidating as his house, though you regard it with a surge of anticipation, knowing that inside it, he's waiting for you. Your mind – an overactive imagination that both you and Will inherited from one of your parents – raced the night before with possibilities. Thoughts of him pinning you to the door again and touching you until you couldn't stand, or pulling you into his lap and riding him until he spilled inside you.

You have no idea what the inside of the office looks like, but therapists have couches, right? There are a lot of things people can do on couches.

You walk up to the patient entrance and step inside, regarding the warm-colored and small waiting area. You knock on the second door and wait, nervous and excited as you hear his footsteps approach from the other side. The door opens, revealing Hannibal, just as finely dressed as he was the night before. He smiles at you in greeting, and offers his hand, kissing your knuckles when you place your hand in his.

"Good afternoon, darling," he purrs, and pulls you inside. The office itself is larger than you expected it to be, with a cool color scheme, and two large dark chairs, a lounge seat, and a second balcony floor framed with shelves packed to bursting.

You get almost ten seconds to take in all of that before he's kissing you, and then your mind is filled with static, and the scent of him, and the heat in his hands as he flattens them on your waist and pulls you close.

Then, up, big hands wrapping under your thighs and lifting you into his arms. It startles a laugh out of you as you cling to him, wrapping your arms and legs around him as he carries you over to one of the big chairs, turns, and settles down on it, giving you time to adjust and sit comfortably in his lap.

"Hi," you say, laughing when he smiles up at you and pulls you down for another kiss. "Are we having lunch, or was that a clever ruse, Doctor?"

His smile is wide, crinkling his eyes at the corners, and you can't help but kiss them, even as his hands flatten on your thighs and push your dress up, bunching around your hips. "I thought I would indulge in dessert first," he purrs, and you shiver, biting your lower lip as you feel how hard he already is. You slide your hands to the back of the chair and spread your knees as wide as you can, pressing down. It feels like only minutes ago he had his fingers inside you, you're already so warm and sensitive.

His hands map the curves of your body, sliding up to your shoulders and back down, shamelessly. Like you're one of his most treasured possessions. The heat in his eyes makes your stomach warm and your thighs tense around him, and you shiver, looking down as he finds the zipper at the back of your dress and slowly starts to pull it down.

"I trust you have no reservations?" he purrs, kissing your neck.

"None," you reply, softly.

"Good," he says, smiling, and peels the sleeves of your dress down, tugging them over your hands. "Look at me." You obey, caught in his ravenous stare. He wraps a hand in your hair and pulls you into a kiss, pushing the dress down so it pools around your waist. Your underwear isn't particularly fancy, though you went with something lacey today, anticipating that he'd see it. He unhooks your bra and tugs it down over your arms, and you shiver in the cool air of the office, and again when one of his warm hands cups your breast, thumb dragging tenderly over your nipple and making it peak.

A restless, needy sound escapes you, and it's immensely gratifying to feel how he twitches, his cock making an obvious line in his expensive suit pants. He wraps his arms around you, encouraging you to grind down against him, every inch of bared skin touching his soft, fine clothes. Your toes curl in your heels and you kick them off, laughing at the over-loud sound they make as they thud to the floor.

His upper lip twitches in a snarl, and he rises suddenly, turning and pushing you down onto the chair. His hands push at the inside of your thighs before you can close them, guiding you to hook your legs wide on the arms of the chair, exposing yourself. You blush, shy, but the way he looks at you is like the best meal he'll ever get, and he sinks to his knees with an eager growl, cups your ass and flattens his tongue on the outside of your underwear, hot and soaking through the thin fabric immediately.

You whimper, sliding your hands into his hair, and fight the urge to close your eyes.

He smiles at you, Cheshire Cat-wide. "Good girl," he purrs, and wraps his fingers in your clothes, pulling them all off at once and draping them over the other chair. The dynamic of being completely naked while he's still clothed is even more foreign than the situation itself, and makes you squirm restlessly on the chair.

He leans in, big hands around your thighs, and nips lightly at the crease. "Be still, princess," he commands, the pet name shocking you into stillness again. Christ, you love it when he calls you that. "I'll take care of you. Be good."

You shiver, and bite your lower lip, fingers lacing in his hair. It's so soft, deceptively soft considering how much product he must use to slick it back like that. He tilts his head into your touch like a needy cat, and then lowers his head, and licks flat and wide between your legs. Instantly, heat, and the promise of how good it felt last time he touched you here, makes your thighs tremble and spread out again. You moan, panting already, chest blushing pink.

He snarls, hands tightening on your hips, and does it again. His tongue curls and drags so slowly until he finds your clit, and he licks over it, giving it no more than a passing moment of attention. He sucks the sensitive skin around your entrance into his mouth, giving you the lightest graze of his teeth. You can't help how your legs bend, feet braced over his back.

He moans against you, tongue curling until he finds your clit and sucks it into his mouth. The pressure is fantastic and the way his teeth graze the bottom of it, tongue flicking lightly over you, makes you tilt your head back, moaning to the ceiling. Your hands tighten in his hair and your legs tighten around his head, urging him deeper. You need him deeper, inside you again like last night, it had felt so good when -.

Fingers of one hand rub teasingly over your entrance, the other returning to your nipples, lightly circling them until they're sensitive, pinching. He licks his fingers and puts them back on you, three points of sensation lit up and shooting pleasure between them like a live wire. You know you're babbling, can't keep your damn mouth shut.

"Fuck, that's so good. Please, more – please, fuck. Daddy, fuck me."

He goes still, and you realize what you let slip a split second later. Embarrassment blazes crimson on your face, an excuse stuttering on the tip of your tongue. But he meets your eyes, his own black as they were the night before, and lunges up for a kiss that steals your breath away.

"You beautiful, precious thing," he growls. You can hear him pulling at his own clothes, unbuttoning and unzipping his suit pants, pushing them down. There's a rustle of fabric and he cups your skull, fingers wrapped tight in your hair as he kisses your forehead.

You look down, finally getting to see his flushed, hard cock. He's thick and long, leaking at the tip, a hand around himself to give him some relief. You swallow, knowing nothing but the truth that you want it inside you, now.

You look back up. He's panting, his eyes half-closed, staring at you. Biting your lower lip, you tilt your head up and graze your lips across his jaw. "Please, Daddy," you whisper again, since he seemed to like it so much. A shiver runs down him, his free hand flexing on your hip, another thin bead of precum brimming in the slit of his cock. "Please, fuck me."

He smiles, and kisses you deeply. The head of his cock teases your slick entrance, he rubs it over your swollen, sensitive clit, back down, getting himself wet.

"Please," you whisper again, sliding your hands down his shoulders, gripping his sides as tight as you can. He leans down and nuzzles you, another rumble of anticipation in his throat you can't help but kiss, mouthing at his jaw.

"Slowly, darling," he says, promises. You nod, shivering and closing your eyes as you feel him start to push inside you. He growls against your hair, wrapping a hand around the back of your neck and holding you close to him as he forces his cock into you. He feels huge, and he's so hard, and the way your body parts around him feels so good. Like you were made for this, made to be pinned under him and held by him and taken, used for his pleasure.

"Oh." His exhale is rough, voice so low. "You feel wonderful, darling." You smile, laughing shakily, your hands moving to his back and gripping tightly. "My perfect, precious girl. Does it feel good?"

"Yes," you gasp.


"Yes, Daddy," you say, moaning when he shivers again. His hips connect, pushing at the backs of your thighs, encouraging you to spread out more and let him in deeper. He growls into your ear and pets down to your knees, pushing them a little up, so it feels like you're getting folded in half. "Oh, God…."

He makes a low sound, and kisses you, for a moment settled and merely enjoying how warm and wet you are. Then, he rocks back, a slow roll of his hips before he pushes in again, and every inch of you trembles with desire.

"Daddy," you whine, "I want -."

"I know, darling," he purrs. "Just let me enjoy you for a moment."

You nod, sighing when you taste yourself on his tongue, and relax into his warm hands, petting up your thighs, around your hips, up to your breasts and then behind your shoulders so he can cover every inch of you. He's so warm and heavy, his scent everywhere, the sound of his rough breathing ringing in your ears.

Then, he starts to move. His rhythm is deep and slow, thrusts ricocheting all the way up to your throat. You whimper, clinging to him with everything you have, internal muscles clenching helplessly around his thick cock as he fucks you. He's brushing that spot his fingers found last night and it feels so good, and his clothed stomach rubs against your clit whenever he pushes all the way inside you.

"Daddy," you whisper, panting. "Please. Please make me come. I wanna come for you."

He shudders, growling low, and kisses your racing pulse. His hands take your wrists and pin them above your head, linked into the fingers of one hand as his other one sinks between your stomachs and he rubs, slowly, over your clit, in the same rhythm of his hips. The touch is so light and teasing but it's so fucking good.

He kisses you, and rests your foreheads together, his rhythm picking up. "You can come when I get to 'One'," he says. You blink up at him, eyes wide, and moan when he gives you a wicked smile, and kisses you again.


Oh, fuck.

His fingers rub a little harder, back and forth. There's sweat on his brow, clothes clinging to him as his body heats up.


You whimper, biting your lower lip hard. Your toes curl and you hold your breath, trying to hold on. The anticipation is building and you feel it like an earthquake under your feet.


"Daddy, please."

"Hold on, princess," he says. He sounds breathless too. "Hold on for me. You're doing so well. Seven."

You clench your eyes tightly shut, because if you keep looking at him it's going to be over before he says so. He huffs, amused and fond, and bites gently at your lower lip. "Look at me, little one."

You do. He looks like he'll eat you alive.

"Six," he breathes, and you can see his jaw tightening with restraint as well. His fingers tighten around your wrists with bruising strength. "Five."

He pauses, and you moan, arching up, trying to get him deeper inside you. His fingers tremble on your clit, and slide down, parting around where his cock is buried, getting himself slick. You know you've leaked onto the chair. He'll smell it for the rest of the day.

"Four," he snarls, and spreads his knees out wider, and then the angle is right on the sensitive place inside you, it feels like he's touching your clit inside and out. You wrap your legs tight around him and bite hard on his lower lip as he fucks you. "Three. Almost there, darling."

"Please, Daddy," you cry, eyes burning with the effort to hold back. Your insides are clenching in pre-spasm, his thumb going half speed so he doesn't push you over. He doesn't want you to fail. You don't want to disappoint him. "Please, please, I'll be good, I'll be good, please."

"Two," he breathes, and his thumb stills completely, just his cock moving and you're so close, fuck, you're so close. Tremors run up and down every inch of your spine, your legs, toes curled so tight they feel like they're cramping. You can't catch your breath and it feels like you're going to pass out, your heart is racing so fast.

He kisses you, feather-light. "Ask me again, princess. One more time."

"Please, Daddy," you whisper. "Please let me come. Please come in me."

He snarls, upper lip curling back, and fucks you so hard the chair creaks along the floor, his fingers rubbing your clit fast and rough. "One."

It's like a rubber band snapping. You bury your wrecked scream against his chest as you come on his cock, so tight you think it's incredible that he can still move inside you. He lets out a rough, low sound, letting go of your wrists and wrapping both arms around you, tugging you down the chair and holding you tight to his body. His hips buck, off-rhythm, and he plants a warm, open-mouthed kiss to your neck as he comes. You feel it, warm and heavy inside you, leaking around his cock and dripping down as he keeps fucking you through your orgasms, the aftershocks lingering and echoing until, by the time he goes still, you're boneless in his arms.

He kisses your neck again, breathing hard, and carefully places you back on the chair, pulling out a moment later with a tender kiss to your forehead. His clothes are a mess from your slick, stained all the way down his thighs and across his stomach, his cock coated with both of you. You watch as he takes the pocket square from his jacket and wipes his brow, and then gently cleans you up, mindful of how sore and sensitive you still are.

Then, he wipes his cock clean, and tucks himself back in. Not that it's not insanely obvious what you've done, given the mess you left behind.

You blush, too fucked-out and satisfied to really be embarrassed. He certainly isn't.

He peppers kisses down your cheek and jaw, brushing your sweaty strands of hair from your face. "Perfect," he murmurs, in a voice so soft and fond it warms you down to your bones. He cups your face and kisses you deeply, nuzzling again, and then moves back so he can help you back into your clothes.

"Now," he says, helping you to your feet. "Lunch?"

You laugh, arching a brow and gesturing to the obscene state of his clothing, and your own wrinkled dress, mussed hair, and implicitly at the thick trails of come you can feel leaking out of you and pooling in your underwear. "We're not exactly fit for polite company," you say.

"I assumed we would dine at my home again," Hannibal replies with a smile. "If you're amenable."

…Oh. That makes sense. You smile, and nod, blushing when he takes your hand and kisses your knuckles. "Sounds great," you murmur.

"Excellent. Give me just a moment and we can leave," he says. You watch him go to his desk and pack up what you assume are patient notes, and turn off the desk lamp, for all the world looking like he hasn't just fucked all higher thinking sense right out of you.

But there's the stain on his clothes, and his hair messed up by your hand, and the pink stain on his cheeks, his swollen mouth, his dark eyes. He looks good like that, you decide, and then, a moment later, than he should look like that all the time.

He offers his hand, and you take it, when he's ready. "You're going to spoil me," you warn, and don't miss how his eyes light up with almost giddy anticipation at the idea.

"Perish the thought," he purrs, and you laugh, as he leads the way out of his office, and towards his car.