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Title: The Consequences of Sleepwalking
Pairing: Hannibal Lecter/Will Graham
Prompt: Story 03
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! Will, wake up."
Will heard Hannibal's voice calling him from what seemed like a great distance; he had no idea where he was, or why the other man was here with him. The last thing he remembered was tossing and turning in bed, wishing that he could fall asleep.
Yet somehow, he must have slept, and now Hannibal was trying to wake him. "All right, all right, I'm getting up," he grumbled, moving to throw the covers back.
But there were no covers. If there were, he couldn't reach them.
Will's eyes flew open; he blinked in the bright sunlight, raising a hand to shield his eyes. He had no idea how he had gotten here, but for some reason, he was lying on the ground near his house, with Hannibal leaning over him, looking concerned.
"Wh-where am I?" The question seemed idiotic, redundant; he could see his house not far away, so he was obviously at home. In a way.
"You're outside your house, Will." Hannibal's brow creased in a frown. "I found you here. I decided to visit this morning, as I knew you weren't working, and you were lying on the ground not far from the house when I arrived. I nearly ran over you."
"Oh." It was all he could say; he had no memory of how he'd gotten here. He must have been sleepwalking; that was the only explanation for him being outside.
"Do you remember anything?" Hannibal asked, helping Will sit up with one arm placed behind his back. "We need to get you back inside," he added, his voice soft and soothing. "You've been injured, and I need to find out just how badly."
"Injured?" Now that he thought about it, his ankle hurt.
Hannibal nodded, frowning again. "Yes. I believe you may have broken your ankle. There is definitely a bad sprain, but it may be worse than I think. I need to examine you to make sure, and then we need to get you to a hospital." He shook his head. "Such are the consequences of sleepwalking."
"I don't want to go to a hospital." Will shook his head, aware that he sounded like a petulant child. "It's just a sprain. I'm sure I didn't break it."
He'd always hated hospitals, ever since he was a child. They reminded him of pain and fear, and that was one thing he didn't want to deal with at the moment. Not after his frightening, confusing dreams of last night, with the stag chasing him through the woods.
Will looked down at his ankle; it was puffy and swollen, and did indeed look broken. If Hannibal said it was, then it probably was. He knew what he was talking about.
He'd been sleepwalking. He must have been.
No, he had been running. He distinctly remembered being chased through the woods near the house; he had been sleepwalking, but he'd woken up and realized where he was. When he'd begun to walk back to the house, something had chased him.
It was the stag. It couldn't have been anything else. It wasn't just a figment of his imagination; it didn't just exist inside his dreams. It was real.
But he couldn't tell Hannibal about it. If he did, the other man would think he was well and truly insane. It sounded crazy, even to his own ears. A stag that chased him through the woods, trying to impale him with its antlers? Ridiculous.
He had to have dreamed it. It couldn't possibly be real.
But yet, he was more sure of the stag's reality than he'd been of anything in a long time. It was more real than the killers he tried to catch, more real than the cases he worked on.
The stag had chased him. There was no other reason for why he would have been running through the woods, fallen awkwardly, and possibly broken his ankle. He wouldn't have been running from anything other than that. At least, he didn't think so.
Maybe it had been a rabid dog. Maybe it had been some other kind of beast that was chasing him. How the hell did he know? He'd apparently been asleep.
Or had he been? Maybe he had been awake, or in some fugue state between sleeping and waking, when he had been chased. Maybe that was why he had been running. Maybe he wasn't being chased at all, but it had simply been one of the dogs wanting to play.
He would probably never know. And he wasn't sure that he wanted to know.
He didn't want to tell Hannibal that he thought he'd been chased by a stag. That would only make the other man look askance at him and ask if he needed to see a doctor of a different kind, one who would examine his mind instead of his ankle.
Of course, Hannibal could do that himself, and probably would. At some point, Will would have to talk about last night, delve back into his subconscious.
He didn't want that. He wanted to forget about last night. If it was just a dream, then it was better forgotten -- and if he was right, and the stag wasn't just a part of his dreams, but was very real and very dangerous, then he didn't want to deal with it at the moment.
Will winced as Hannibal helped him to his feet; he leaned on the other man as he limped the short distance to the front steps, wondering how he'd get up them and into the house. But Hannibal solved that problem by hoisting Will into his arms and carrying him.
The younger man yelped in surprise; he hadn't expected that. His arms locked around Hannibal's neck, holding on to him for dear life.
"I'm not going to drop you, Will." Hannibal sounded amused, more than he should be.
"I didn't think you would," Will murmured in answer, though he wondered how true those words were. Hadn't Hannibal already done that, in a way, by not seeing how Will felt about him? He'd held out his heart in one trembling hand, only to have it rejected.
Well, not really. Hannibal hadn't turned him down -- he simply hadn't given any indication that he knew of Will's feelings, or that he returned them. That wasn't really rejection.
Maybe this would be a chance for them to bond. Will's spirits rose at the thought; and then another thought struck him. Hannibal hadn't come here today just to visit. They hadn't seen each other for a few days; he had probably been worried.
That made his spirits rise even more. Hannibal had been worried about him. Hannibal had wanted to see him. What other reason could there be for him to drive an hour out to Wolf Trap from Baltimore? He had wanted to be here, for them to be together.
Maybe his relationship with Hannibal wasn't as one-sided as he'd previously thought.
Just the fact that Hannibal was here with him spoke volumes. He wouldn't be here if he didn't care. And it was a good thing he'd shown up when he had.
Hannibal gently lowered Will to his feet, letting the younger man lean against him as he pushed the door open. Will limped inside, holding back the hiss of pain that he wanted to let out through his teeth. He didn't want to admit that every step hurt.
When he was seated on the couch, Hannibal knelt in front of him, examining his ankle closely. "Will, this is most definitely broken. We'll have to get you to a hospital. I'll bind it, but I can't set it properly here. We'll get you to the nearest emergency room in Wolf Trap."
Will nodded, not daring to argue. He didn't think Hannibal would listen to anything he would say, and he did know that his ankle needed to be treated.
He sighed softly, wishing that he could talk to Hannibal about what had happened.
But that was impossible, when he wasn't sure himself of just what had taken place. Had he been chased through the woods? Or was that just part of his dream? He had no idea of what was real and what might have been part of that dream state.
He wasn't going to talk about it. Not with Hannibal, not with anyone. Not until he'd had a chance to do a bit of exploring around the woods -- probably at night -- and see if he could come up with some rational kind of explanation as to what might have happened.
Something told him that he wouldn't be able to do that. What he'd thought might have happened defied rationality. He even thought he sounded crazy.
What would Hannibal think? Will stole a glance down at the other man.
Hannibal seemed comfortable with him, right at home in his house. It obviously didn't bother him to be here; and he had come here without being asked. He cared enough to be here, to take care of Will, even though he probably had better things to do.
He was here, and right now, nothing else mattered.
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