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Title: Hollow Victory
By: angstytimelord
Pairing: Hannibal Lecter/Will Graham
Fandom: Hannibal
Rating: PG-13
Table: 1drabble
Prompt: 8, Victory
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. soar


He had won a victory. Hadn't he?

Will pondered that thought as he stood in the shower the next morning, letting the hot water pounding down on him wash away the aches and pains from the night before. He was bruised black and blue, but the bruises signified that victory.

Hannibal wasn't leaving. His lover was staying here with him, in Baltimore. Hannibal needed him; he didn't want to leave.

They were happy together. Weren't they? Will bit his lip as he considered the possibility that Hannibal might only be staying because he felt some kind of responsibility to Will as his submissive, not because he really wanted to be here.

That thought had bothered him ever since last night.

That thought was definitely enough to take the edge off his happiness, to make him feel that he shouldn't expect Hannibal to stay here. It was exhilarating to think that Hannibal needed him and didn't want to leave him -- but was it the absolute truth?

He wanted to tell himself that Hannibal wouldn't lie to him, but he knew that wasn't necessarily true. His lover was the kind of man who didn't always see things in black and white; if he felt that he had to tell an untruth to placate someone, then he would do it.

But would Hannibal lie to him? They had shared so much; Will had given his body and soul to this man. He trusted Hannibal with his life, even though there were times when he felt uneasy with that decision and wondered if he'd done the right thing.

Should he trust Hannibal? Had he really won a victory? Or was Hannibal staying against his better judgement? He didn't want to feel like he wast just one more obligation for Hannibal, something that his lover would come to resent.

He didn't want to be one of Hannibal's regrets.

But how did he ask Hannibal how he really felt? If he did that and asked directly, then Hannibal might think that Will didn't believe what he had been told. He didn't want the man he loved to believe that Will thought he was lying.

So he should just keep his mouth shut, he told himself as he turned off the water and stepped out of the shower. It should be enough that Hannibal was staying.

Yet somehow, it wasn't. Yes, it was a victory of a sort, but it felt hollow. He couldn't help feeling that there was some other secret behind Hannibal wanting to stay here, one that had nothing to do with him. One that was too dangerous for him to know about.

Whatever that secret was, Will didn't think he wanted to know.