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Title: Into the Void
By: angstytimelord
Pairing: Hannibal Lecter/Will Graham
Fandom: Hannibal
Rating: PG-13
Author's Note: Sequel to "Blank Slate."
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, can you hypnotize me?"

Will hadn't expected to ask that question, but it had popped out almost of its own volition. It was something he'd been thinking about for the last couple of days; he didn't know if Hannibal was capable of doing so, but if he was, it was worth a try.

He had to know what had happened to him, why his body was so bruised and battered. And if Hannibal could guide him into some place that was buried in his memory, a place where those memories would open up and reveal their secrets to him, he needed to do so.

He needed to go into the void of his mind, even though it was a frightening, dark place that he would rather avoid. He had to know what had happened to him.

If he didn't find out, he was going to go insane. He couldn't stand wondering about what had happened, and letting his mind make all kinds of wild conjectures. He had to know for certain what had taken place and deal with it, so he could move on.

Will knew that he had to put this incident behind him, but without full closure, he doubted that he would be able to do that. And if he couldn't, then it would probably eat away at him, make him become more and more paranoid, and his sanity would slowly crumble.

Of course, most people would probably say that had already happened.

His mouth quirked into a wry smile at the thought. So many people already thought he was crazy -- or that he was nothing more than Jack Crawford's pet freak.

He hated that. He hated being thought of as some kind of nutjob, someone who was only brought out when Jack needed help with a particularly bad case. He was the eccentric professor, the person who had some kind of weird gift that set him apart from everyone else.

No, not a gift, at least not in his eyes. More of a curse. One that he felt he could never escape from. It would make him for the rest of his life.

He hated what he was. Sometimes he even hated who he was. But fortunately, Hannibal had been helping him to overcome that.

Still, it wasn't easy to deal with what could be called a curse and a gift equally -- and the fact that he also had to deal with issues like his sleepwalking didn't help, either. There were times when he wondered if he would crack under all the pressure.

So far, he'd managed not to. But it was getting worse, and he could feel himself coming apart at the seams. He was sure that Hannibal could sense it, too.

Hell, everyone around him probably realized that he was starting to fall apart.

This new pressure with the sleepwalking was only making things worse. Will could literally feel himself, his psyche, starting to unravel, and it was frightening. If Hannibal could hypnotize him, bring his memories to the surface, maybe that would help.

And maybe it wouldn't, he thought with a sigh. But going into the void, trying to dredge something up from that darkness, might at least give him some answers.

"I have never hypnotized anyone, Will." Hannibal's tone rang with regret; Will could tell that he didn't like having to admit to such a thing. "I'm sorry."

"It's out of your spectrum, I guess." Will didn't know why he felt so inexplicably beaten; he had really hoped that Hannibal would be able to do this. But his boyfriend was probably one of those psychiatrists who felt that hypnotism was a silly parlor trick.

"I could take you to someone who could help you with this."

Those next words made Will's heart rate quicken, his breath come faster. So, Hannibal actually believed that hypnotism might do him some good, help with his problem.

"I believe that if you were hypnotized, the reasons for your sleepwalking could possibly come to light -- and it might stop the occurrences from happening altogether." Hannibal leaned across the slight space that separated the chairs they were seated in, his gaze intense.

"It's worth a try," Will offered, feeling a little uncomfortable by the expression on Hannibal's face. It was the look o a man who was studying a .... lab specimen.

He didn't like to have his boyfriend, his lover, looking at him like that. It diminished what he was to Hannibal, made him feel like nothing more than an .... experiment.

No, he shouldn't feel that way, Will told himself firmly. He was far more than that to Hannibal, and he knew it. They had a relationship; they weren't merely a doctor and his patient. He could trust Hannibal; there was no reason for him not to.

Being hypnotized was a frightening thought. He would be going into the void of his mind when he was sleepwalking, and he wasn't entirely sure that he wanted to see what was there.

But it wasn't as though he had much of a choice, at this point.

Will took a deep breath, nodding and looking directly at Hannibal. "Then do it. I want to know what happens when my body is in control and my mind is asleep. I want to know where I go, what I do. And I want to try to keep it from happening again."

Hannibal shook his head, looking worried. "Will, I don't think that simply being hypnotized and finding out what happens when you are sleepwalking will make it stop. That is a void that your body steps into, and I do not think you can easily push it away."

"Mayne not," Will told him, taking a deep breath. "But I need to try to find out more about what happens. If I don't, then it's going to drive me over the brink."

Though he still looked troubled, Hannibal nodded slowly. "And there will be someone there who can bring you out of the hypnotic trance, so you will be safe. Perhaps you can find answers as to just what happened to you the last time you were sleepwalking."

"That's what I'm hoping," Will answered, realizing that his tone was much more grim than he intended for it to be. He tried to lighten his voice when he spoke again. "I need to know, Hannibal. And if this is a way to find out, then it's at least a start."

He would have to plunge into the void. But he could do it.

If it brought him some closure, then he could close his eyes and dive in, no matter how frightening it might feel at first. Hopefully, it would only be this once, and then eh would have the closure he needed. If not that, then he might at least have a place to start looking for answers.

Will leaned back in his chair, letting out a breath that he hadn't realized he had been holding. This was only the first step, but it was one he had to take. And no matter how scary it was, he knew that he would have Hannibal to hold his hand and be beside him every step of the way.