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Title: Prelude
By: angstytimelord
Pairing: Hannibal Lecter/Will Graham
Fandom: Hannibal
Rating: PG-13
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.


The prelude to their story had been so good.

Will sighed as he thought back on the time he and Hannibal had spent getting to know each other, how he had reached out to the other man.

He had bloomed during that time, like a flower that had turned towards the sun. In that time, he'd still seen Hannibal as being the sun, rather than the darkness he actually was.

The prelude to their relationship had been one of the best times of his life. He hadn't realized at first that he was falling in love; he'd only thought that he had made a friend, that after all the long years of feeling alone and isolated, he had finally found someone who understood him.

It had been a time of self-discovery, of opening himself up to emotions that he hadn't realized could exist. It had been a time of wonder, of amazement.

Will hadn't wanted it to end. He had wanted to believe that he and Hannibal could have a future together, that their lives could connect and intertwine.

Yes, the prelude had been wonderful.

That had been such a time of happiness for him, once he'd realized that he was indeed falling in love, and had let it happen naturally.

He hadn't known that he was falling in love with a killer, the murderer that he was spending most of his time searching for. He hadn't known what Hannibal was then; if he had, then he would never have let his emotions get the better of him. He would have recoiled from what he was doing.

But he hadn't known. He had lived in a fool's paradise, thinking that he'd finally found what he wanted in life, believing that he finally had it all.

It had seemed as though he'd finally found everything he wanted, hadn't it? Will's lips twisted in a parody of a smile as he let his thoughts drift back over the past.

He'd been so happy with Hannibal then. The first time they'd made love had been a revelation for him; he had never felt anything like the physical sensations Hannibal aroused in him, and coupled with the emotional connection he had to his lover, their lovemaking had been powerful.

For the first time in his life, he had finally felt that he was no longer on the outside looking in. He'd believed that he had finally found everything he needed in life.

How could he have known that their prelude would lead to ultimate disaster?

Would it have been better if he'd never found out what Hannibal was? No, he couldn't let himself think like that. If he hadn't eventually discovered the truth, he would be dead.

If his lover had to make the choice between losing Will and keeping his crimes hidden, Will didn't doubt that Hannibal would have dispensed of him without a second thought.

Will fully believed that Hannibal would have killed him if he hadn't managed to keep his discovery of the truth a secret. Hannibal wouldn't let emotional involvement get in the way of saving his own skin. When it came down to brass tacks, Will had never really meant much to him.

He'd managed to get through the rest of that afternoon, even though he had wanted to cringe away from Hannibal rather than be close to him.

When he'd gone to Jack with what he had found, he'd sat there in the office as his boss had left, staring at the walls without seeing anything.

He had known that his life was crumbling around him.

He hadn't gone to Hannibal's house again until after his lover was safely behind bars. He hadn't gone back to that room in the basement where he'd first discovered those horrors.

All he'd done was walk slowly upstairs to the bedroom they had shared and taken the few clothes he kept there, then to the bathroom to retrieve his toothbrush.

After that, he hadn't been able to bring himself to go back to that house. He never would. He'd left behind a part of who he was there, a part of himself that he could never get back. The last vestige of his innocence had disappeared in that house, when he'd discovered what Hannibal really was.

Their wonderful prelude had turned into a relationship that he wanted to treasure forever, but would now be tainted forever by that hideous discovery.

Will blinked rapidly, refusing to let his emotions take him over. He'd done the right thing. He had done the only thing he could possibly have done under the circumstances.

He couldn't let Hannibal go free. Not after what he'd found.

But a part of him would always regret turning his lover in. A part of him would forever mourn what they had shared, as well as cursing himself for falling in love with a killer.

A part of him would always want to go back to their prelude, when everything had been good, he hadn't known what he was getting himself into, and he was in love. Those golden, glowing days of happiness that would never return, those days when he had thought he was on top of the world.

It was far too easy to go from being on top to hitting rock bottom, Will told himself with a sigh. And he knew that far better than most people ever could.

At least now, the only way to go was up.