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Title: Two Points For Honesty
Pairing: Hannibal Lecter/Will Graham
Prompt: #48, Two points for honesty
Disclaimer: This is entirely a product of my own imagination, and I make no profit from it. I do not own the lovely Hannibal Lecter or Will Graham, unfortunately, just borrowing them for a while. Please do not sue.
***Hannibal regarded Will with a smile, one that Will wanted to wipe from his face. The smugness of such an expression made him want to scream.
But of course, Hannibal was under the impression that he still wielded some power over him, Will thought with an inward smile of his own. He couldn't know the depths to which Will despised him; he thought that his dubious charm could make anyone accept him.
Not this time. And in Will's case, never again.
He knew what it was like to have the full force of that charm turned on him. And for a while, he'd even thought that it was sincere.
He knew better now. He knew just what kind of a soulless, depraved monster Hannibal really was, and he was never going to forget it. He was never going to let himself forget that Hannibal had used him, and that this man had wanted him dead.
Hannibal had induced his seizures, which could have killed him. This monster hadn't told him about his encephalitis, which could have been fatal.
And he knew about all of the murders that Hannibal had committed, as did everyone. People knew what a perverted monster was hidden under that suave charm, that mask of seeming civility. This wasn't a man. It was an abomination.
Hannibal would never be honest about what he was. Will knew that. He might admit to the murders, but he would never admit that what he'd done was monstrous.
Still, Will wanted and needed some answers.
He had to know just what Hannibal had done to him, had to fill in those gaps in his memories. If he didn't, then those gaps would only feel as though they were growing larger -- until he fell screaming into one of them and couldn't pull himself out again.
He'd have to ask those questions in a roundabout way; he was sure that if he posed them outright to this man, they wouldn't be answered.
Of would they? Hannibal seemed to be proud of what he'd done, as though turning Will's life upside down had been some sort of experiment he'd conducted. He wasn't at all ashamed of how he had nearly brought Will's life to an ignominious end.
Will didn't believe that Hannibal wouldn't have let him die.
if it had benefited Hannibal for him to lose his life, then he would have. He had no doubt that he would have been sacrificed with very little regret.
This monster smiling at him from the other side of the cage wasn't human, he reminded himself. It was a hideous, loathsome thing that only wore a mask of humanity. That mask had been pulled aside, and he would never believe in it again.
But he had to make himself approach Hannibal as though there was still some rapport between them, even though it didn't exist any more, and never would again.
"What is it that you want to know, Will?" Hannibal's voice was very quiet, the words almost a purr. "I might just decide to tell you, without any subterfuge."
Will tilted his head to the side, regarding Hannibal quizzically. What did this monster have to gain by telling him the truth? Absolutely nothing, which was why he didn't trust the words that had just been uttered. But maybe, just maybe, they were the truth.
Maybe Hannibal was giving him one small chance to find out at least part of what he wanted to know, giving him a taste of it before he began to play his mind games.
If that was so, then Will would take what he could get.
"Wjy did you feel that you had to frame me, Hannibal?" he asked, keeping his voice quiet and steady. "You've always claimed to be my friend, and to care about me. Doing something like that proves that all your claims of friendship were lies."
"I did it to make you stronger, Will," Hannibal said, his voice equally as steady. "You needed to go through the flames of hell to be remade."
"Well, I'll give you two points for honesty," Will conceded. "But I was fine the way I was. I was developing a lot of strength from working in the field. I didn't need to have my head metaphorically forced underwater. That didn't make me stronger."
"Ah, I beg to differ." The bastard was actually smiling.
Will's hands clenched into fists as he looked into that smiling face. He had never wanted to hit anyone so much in his life, but he would refrain from violence.
After all, he didn't have much of a choice. And besides, why resort to that? Hannibal was where he rightfully belonged; he was behind bars now, and he wasn't getting out. Will had won. He had proven his innocence, and Hannibal's guilt. It should all be water under the bridge.
Only it wasn't. He still needed those answers. He needed to know what had been done to him -- all of it. He needed to fill in those gaps, put those pieces back together.
Until he could do that, he would never be a whole person again -- and Hannibal knew it. Maybe he had always known that it would come to this, and that was why he'd done all that he had. To make sure that Will would never feel complete again.
If that had been his true reason for everything he'd put Will through, then he would never be honest about that. Will was sure that his adversary would lie until the bitter end.
Lies were all he expected at this point.
"Why would you want to remake me?" he asked, wondering what kind of an answer he would get to that question. He thought he already knew the answer: Hannibal had wanted to draw out the darkness that Will knew hovered within him, to make Will into his own image.
But he wouldn't know the truth of that until Hannibal told him. And as he watched that smiling face, he had to wonder if the answer would be what he expected to hear.
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