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Title: Unstable
By: angstytimelord
Pairing: Hannibal Lecter/Will Graham
Fandom: Hannibal
Rating: PG-13
Table: Alphabet Challenge, tv_universe
Prompt: S - Stability
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.


"Do you think you're unstable, Will?"

"What do you think?" Will got up from the chair he'd been sitting in, pacing back and forth across the short span of carpet between that chair and Hannibal's, shoving his hands into the pockets of his jeans. "Do I seem stable to you?"

He had to keep his hands in his pockets so Hannibal wouldn't see that they were clenched into fists. He didn't want to seem as if he was violent.

No, he wasn't a violent person. He wouldn't cause anyone any harm -- not even himself. But at the moment, he was angry. He didn't want to feel as though he was losing control, but there were times when it felt as if there was a .... a fire in his brain.

He hated feeling like this. But he couldn't make it stop.

He felt helpless, trapped, betrayed by his own body. He didn't know what was wrong with him -- only that whatever it was, it seemed to be getting worse. He was having more nightmares -- and that was when he managed to actually get some sleep.

More often than not, a nightmare would awaken him within an hour or so after he'd managed to drift off to sleep -- after tossing and turning for literally hours.It was beyond frustrating.

But there was nothing he could do about it, Will thought with a sigh. He'd tried taking sleeping pills, but they had only made him feel dizzy and disoriented when he'd awoken from a nightmare -- well, more dizzy and disoriented than usual, at any rate.

He was cracking up. He could feel himself unraveling.

And there wasn't a damn thing he could do to stop it from happening. He could feel himself careening down a train track, heading for a sheer drop off a steep cliff -- and he couldn't stop the forward momentum. He was propelled onwards, no matter how he tried to slow down.

He felt helpless, out of control. That only added to the mental instability that he could feel wrapping around him like a cloak, trapping him within its stifling folds.

He couldn't explain that to Hannibal. The other man would never understand; Will doubted that he ever felt helpless and trapped. Nothing ever seemed to faze Hannibal; he would never give in to feelings or panic or fear. He would always stay calm and collected.

How different he was from Will. How completely opposite.

Will sighed softly, wishing that he could put what he felt into words, but it was impossible. There was no way that he could accurately describe his roiling emotions.

But yes, he did feel unstable. He could answer that question with the simple word yes. It was easy for anyone to see that he didn't feel stable; just the fact that he was pacing around the room should tell Hannibal that. He never paced.

But he was doing it now, and he couldn't seem to stop himself. It was as though the fire in his brain was shooting off sparks, firing up his synapses, making him walk around to burn off the excess energy that fire was causing to build up within him.

He sighed softly as he paced; he shouldn't have snapped at Hannibal. The man was only trying to help him, and he was acting like a jackass.

Turning, he faced Hannibal, hands still shoved into his pockets.

"I'm sorry," he said, his voice very soft. "I don't mean to act like a jerk. You know that. I just .... it's kind of a rhetorical question, isn't it? Yes, I do feel unstable. Not just right now. But all the time. it's like there's a fire in my brain that I can't put out."

Hannibal nodded somberly, his dark eyes regarding Will, that gaze moving up and down his body before finally coming to rest on his face.

"I think you're only as unstable as you let yourself be." Hannibal's words were softly spoken, but they had the ring of truth behind them. Will was sure that the other man meant what he said; he wasn't merely saying those words to make him feel better.

In a way, they did ease his mind somewhat.

At least Hannibal believed in him, in his stability. Hannibal didn't think he was going to go hurtling over the edge; he wouldn't have said those words if he did, would he? Will didn't think those words had been spoken merely to calm him down.

No, Hannibal meant them. Hannibal believed in him, and therefore, he had to try to believe in himself. He couldn't keep careening down the path he was on.

Taking a deep breath, he forced himself to go back to his chair and sit down, leaning back and meeting Hannibal's gaze. Pacing around wasn't going to do him any good; he was only further agitating himself. He had to stay calm, to push the panicky feeling away.

He couldn't be stable if he wasn't going to act stable.

"Now then." Hannibal's gaze met his again, those dark eyes seeming to see right through him, into his very soul. "Let's talk about the question of stability a bit more, Will. You need to understand just why you feel so unstable if you want to conquer that feeling."

Will nodded slowly, knowing that Hannibal was right. He had to reach for stability, embrace it, and know exactly why he often felt that he couldn't achieve it.

That might not be easy to do, but fortunately, he had Hannibal to help him. This man was on his side; he knew that. Together, he and Hannibal would would tighten his grasp on stability. And he would keep holding on to it, no matter how hard that might prove to be.

He was as ready for that battle as he could be, Will told himself. Bring it on.