Main Hannibal Fan Fiction page | new stories page | Will/Hannibal slash page | other pairings page | gen stories page

Title: Burn & Shiver
By: angstytimelord
Pairing: Hannibal Lecter/Will Graham
Fandom: Hannibal
Rating: PG-13
Table: narrative_x_10
Prompt: Story 08
Author's Note: One-shot.
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.


Will glanced across the space that separated his chair from Hannibal's, wondering if the other man had any inkling of how he was feeling at the moment. He didn't think so; Hannibal looked completely calm and collected, as though he hadn't a care in the world.

There were times when Will longed to break through that impassive mask that Hannibal always wore, to see the other man lose control. Would that be frightening, or would it make him want Hannibal even more? He was quite sure it would be the latter.

Or maybe both of them, really. Seeing Hannibal lose control would be a scary thing, simply because it was so hard to imagine that happening.

He admired that control. He wished that he possessed some measure of it himself, but when it came to Hannibal, control was one thing that flew right out of the window. It was almost impossible for him to stay seated here, not to reach out to the man sitting across from him.

He was keeping himself under control, but just barely.

Will looked down at his hands, clenched in his lap; the knuckles were white, and they were shaking just a tiny bit. He knew that shaking would become more pronounced as the night went on, as Hannibal spoke to him in that low, soothing voice.

That voice made his body burn, as much as it made him shiver. There was something about Hannibal's voice that was both alluring and a little frightening -- that voice sounded as though it could go from warm compassion to cold anger in the space of a second.

He'd heard both of those emotions in Hannibal's voice, though fortunately, neither had been aimed at him. Will dreaded that day that they would be.

He didn't doubt that at some point, Hannibal would be angry with him. He was too astute not to know that there had already been times during their sessions when Hannibal had been annoyed by something he'd said, but had held that anger back and deferred to him.

If Hannibal's anger came out into the open, it would be terrifying.

But at the same time, he didn't want to hear that compassion directed at him, either. At least, not in a way that translated into pity. There was nothing wrong with him, he told himself fiercely. There was no reason for anyone to pity him. He wasn't a charity case.

Just because he chose to live alone, to be alone, not to be involved with anyone, didn't make him a pathetic figure who needed anyone's pity. It was his choice. He didn't see anyone romantically because he didn't have time for that. It wasn't a priority.

Even as he held on to that thought, he knew it was a lie. He wasn't involved with anyone because his desires led him towards a man who he was sure he couldn't have.

Hannibal could have anyone; he wouldn't want a badly-dressed, virginal, completely inexperienced man who wasn't entirely sure if his own desires were what was best for him. Hannibal didn't need to deal with his problems more than as a doctor to a patient.

It didn't help that he dreamed about Hannibal every night now; dreamed of the other man touching him, kissing him, undressing him, fucking him. Dreamed of Hannibal's hands and lips on his body, of Hannibal doing unspeakable things to him.

And of himself loving everything that Hannibal did.

He didn't want to think about that. He didn't want to remember how those hands had felt in his dreams; that would only make him stare at Hannibal's hands now, and fantasize about them touching him, which would make Hannibal ask what he was doing.

How would he explain that? "Oh, I just dreamed about your hand desecrating my body last night, and I was wondering how that would feel." Oh yeah, that would definitely earn him points with Hannibal -- bad ones. It would probably make him run screaming in the other direction.

Will didn't think he could cope with Hannibal backing away from him. Even if they were never going to be anything more than friends, he needed Hannibal's presence in his life. He needed to know that the other man was there, that he could depend on him.

There was no one else in his life who he felt that he could count on, not even Jack. There was no one but Hannibal. He didn't want to lose that stability.

Just sitting here across from Hannibal, waiting for the other man to speak, was sending a shiver down his spine. He knew that when that mellifluous voice washed over him, that shiver would turn into a heat that spread rapidly over his entire body.

Only Hannibal could affect him like that.

No one else could make him burn and shiver at the same time; no one else could make him want them even while he had the feeling that he needed to back away for his own safety. No one else had ever been so dangerous to his self-control.

It was maddening, this feeling of needing to hold himself back, of not being able to say how he felt. But that was the last thing he should do; he was sure that revealing his feelings would only make Hannibal back away. The other man couldn't possibly feel the same.

Why should he? Will couldn't see anything particularly special about himself, while everything about the man seated across from him was orchestrated to catch the eye and hold it. Will felt that he himself faded into the woodwork; Hannibal stood out in every possible way.

He could probably stand out if he wanted to, a little voice in the back of his mind piped up. He went out of his way to make himself look nondescript; he had for a long time.

If he didn't look desirable, then no one would want him. If he could hide his looks behind thick-lensed glasses that he didn't really need, a scruffy beard, and ill-fitting clothes, then no one wold reach out to him, and he wouldn't feel obligated to make contact.

He wanted to keep those walls up, to stay safe behind them.

But Hannibal had drawn him out from behind those walls, step by step. Hannibal affected him in a way that no one else could, a way that scared him even as it enticed him. Hannibal made him feel things that he didn't understand, things that he was afraid to feel.

Hannibal made his body burn and shiver all at once, made him want to reach for a forbidden fruit that hung to tantalizingly close, yet was still so far away from his grasp.

How long was he going to keep his feelings hidden? How long was he going to pretend that there was nothing between them but friendship, that he didn't care about Hannibal as anything more than someone he knew casually?

If he tried to keep up that pretense, he would eventually fall apart. He wouldn't be able to keep that mask on; sooner or later, it would slip, and Hannibal would know how he felt. He didn't want that to happen; he wanted to express those feelings in his own way, when he was ready.

The problem was, he didn't know if he would ever be ready. He didn't know how to tell Hannibal about those feelings; they had been kept so tightly bottled up for so long that he wasn't quite sure how to set them free, or even to talk about them.

He couldn't talk about them. If he did, then they would all come flooding out, and that would probably startle Hannibal into stepping back.

Then he would be right back where he had started.

Will's hands tightened on the arms of the chair; he could feel his nails catching the threads of the no doubt expensive fabric. If he had been one of his dogs, he would have uttered a sharp remonstrance; he almost expected Hannibal to do that.

Only he wasn't one of the dogs, and Hannibal wasn't one to tell any of his patients not to do somerhing -- at least not in so many words. That pointed stare was enough to keep most people from doing anything offensive, keep them on the straight and narrow.

Will took a deep breath, leaning forward. He had so many things that he wanted to say; he had to take his courage in hand and finally say the words, to get his feelings out in the open, to ease the burning and shivering that permeated not only his body, but his soul.

But he couldn't do it. All he could do was sit there and look at Hannibal, so poised and elegant, sitting across from him with an expectant look on his face.

Will sank back into the chair, closing his eyes. Once again, he had missed the opportunity for everything he wanted to say. He didn't know when it would come again, if ever. And already the shiver down his spine was becoming a slow burn, radiating from the inside out.