Clear Blue Eyes
Disclaimer: I don't own anything. If I did, Hannibal and Will would have ended up together. Yes, I love that ship however this is a gen fic. No pedophilia here.
Prompt:Hannibal comes across a single father yelling at his child (will) in a parking lot, and then witnesses the man slapping him. He follows the two and realizes they are homeless and living in their car. Hannibal makes a choice to kill the father but has not decided what to do with the kid yet. He considers killing him in a humane way to spare him further suffering because he can see the kid had a rough life. Something about will however reminds him of his sister and he decided to keep him...
AN 1: changed the location from parking lot to park by accident I read it wrong the first time but was reluctant to change it after I stared writing… Blame it on my dyslexia.
AN 2: About the timeline. This story takes place when Hannibal was still the Chesapeake Ripper basically before the Ripper's hiatus. Everyone else is the age they would have been during that time period except for Will who is seven.
Hannibal had just finished dealing with a particularly weepy patient and was relieved to see the slob go. Taking disposable gloves out of his desk drawer and some cleaning products, he made sure that the side table was thoroughly cleaned of the snot covered tissues that the patient had left there. He also would need to have that chair cleaned on the weekend since the swine had been touching it with his filthy hands all throughout the session. As he cleaned, the desire to kill the stupid man was growing quite intense. However no matter how disgusting that particular patient was, he was still one of the most polite people he had ever had the misfortune of coming across. Once he was done, he disposed of the gloves and looked at the time. A small smile made its way to his face as he confirmed that it was finally lunch time.
After a week of nonstop rain, the weather had finally cleared and he could eat his lunch outside as he usually did. He locked his office and made his way to the park. It was not too far from his place of work and was also almost always deserted. It was a perfect place to eat in peace and quiet all the while being surrounded by nature. He sat on his usual bench and breathed in the scent of the plants and trees. He could also smell some of the squirrels that were in the tree above him. He took out his containers from the bag when his keen senses detected the presence of intruders. They were not too far away from what he could tell and were unfortunately heading his way. He let out a long suffered sigh. Nothing was going his way today. First he gets stuck in traffic on his way to his office due to a road blockage then that pig had to have a sobbing fit in his office and now this.
As they drew nearer, he picked up their scent and reeled back in disgust. Whoever they were, they were in an obvious need of a very thorough scrubbing. There was also a lingering scent of alcohol in the mix. He was in no mood of dealing with a drunk. In that instant, a man appeared from the bushes. He was unshaven, his wild hair giving him a crazed look. He was wearing a stained jacket and jeans that were torn at the knees. They looked like they were barely hanging together. What caught Hannibal's interest was the little boy the man was dragging by the cuff of his neck. Hannibal frowned in displeasure when the father threw the child to the ground who yelped at the rough treatment.
"Sorry, Pa. I'll do better I promise." The boy pleaded tearfully to his father in distinctive southern accent. From his size, the doctor would have guessed that child was no older than five however he could see signs of malnourishment that the oversized clothing could not hide. He was most likely older than he looked. His hair was same shade as his father's and just as wild. It was almost as though someone had taken shears to them. The fringe covered his eyes quite well but Hannibal's keen eyes caught a glint of blue.
"Ya little bastard, how many times do I have to tell you!?" he yelled grabbing the boy's ratty shirt. Hannibal watched in distaste as the man proceeded to shaking the child violently while screaming profanities. He wondered what the boy could have done to incur his drunken father's wrath. For all he knew, the boy could have been acting like a brat.
"Didn't I say not to come back if you did not gather more than 50 bucks? What am I supposed to do with 30, Will? Look at me when I talk to you!"
"I did my best, honest! But a big man found out and ran after me." Will replied all the while reluctantly looking his father in the eyes.
Hannibal frowned as he realized exactly why the man was angered. That officially ruled out the possibility of the boy having misbehaved. The dark haired man was obviously making his son pick pockets. Given the fact that the father was obviously an alcoholic, every cent that the child stole would go to satisfying his addiction. It was no wonder the boy was so thin. Sighing in annoyance, Hannibal packed his containers in the bag and decided to go elsewhere. He was obviously not going to get any quiet here. He was about leave when he heard a resounding slap. He swirled around to find Will on the ground sobbing with his father standing over him.
"Don't make excuses, ya god damned brat!" He yelled as he advanced on the boy. "What have I told you about crying, huh? ANSWER ME!"
"Boys don't cry." Little Will mumbled as wiped his tears quickly and whimpered as he tried hard to keep from crying.
"Remember it well. Now get UP!" The man roared as he pulled the child violently to his feet. He pushed the boy roughly forward as they walked out of view.
Anger boiled through Hannibal as he followed them discreetly. It was rare for Hannibal to feel anything greater than mild anger but this man had made the mistake of inflaming his wrath. As he trailed them he contemplated the thousands of ways he could prolong his death. He would make this man squeal like the pig he was. That was a promise. On the other hand, the boy would be swiftly put out of his misery. It was the least he could do for him. It was statistically unlikely that any prospective parents would adopt him given the damage his father's abuse had inflicted on him not to mention the fact that the child stole. Hannibal was quite certain that the little boy would be bounced from one foster home to the next. If they had any other relatives who could take him in, they would have had to do it long before now. He would not condemn him to the system if he could help it.
He observed them carefully. It was no wonder no alarms had been raised about the father's treatment of the boy. The man was very careful to be gentler with his son in public. The bruise that had likely formed from the slap was perfectly hidden away from view by dark hair. Any other bruise was probably hidden underneath the layers of clothing he wore. It did not really matter though, the youth will be dead soon enough. He shadowed them into an almost deserted parking lot as they made their way to a beat-up truck. Hannibal saw that there were old bags in the back and quickly drew the conclusion that they were living out of their truck. It explained their smell and their appearance.
Making sure to keep his distance, he listened to the father gruffly tell his son to stay in the car. Hannibal saw the boy's face clearly for the first time as a gust of blew his hair from his face. He froze in shock at the sight. Will was staring after his father from the open window in a deep seeded sadness that was quite familiar. The doctor had no idea what it was about the boy that made him feel a rare sense of nostalgia. He contemplated over the contour of the thin pale face and distinctive features, and stopped short at the clear blue eyes. To his surprise, the image of the boy was suddenly replaced with that of a little girl he would never forget.
"Mischa…" Hannibal murmured as his eyes glazed over in pain. The illusion was quickly dissolved as he reminded himself that she was long dead and was once again staring at the boy. Despite the fact this boy was not his sister, there was no doubt in his mind that now killing him would be impossible. It would feel as though Mischa was dying again and that was unacceptable.
It put him in a dilemma and his anger towards the father actually increased tenfold. His options were quite limited but the only acceptable path would be to simply kill the father and take the boy. A plan began to form in his mind and a smirk made its way on his face as he went after the brute glancing back one final time at his Will. He would regret dearly every single thing he ever did to the boy he would make sure of that.
Will curled up in the truck as tears tracked down his face. His stomach growled and tightened painfully. He was so hungry. His pa had given him a few crackers that morning but it had not been nearly enough to fill his stomach. His cheek still hurt from where his father had hit him. He wiped his eyes vigorously.
"Boys don't cry." He whispered to himself.
He did not understand why they could not go home but he knew better than to ask. Not long after his ma died, he stopped going to work in the morning and would sit in the living room all day. By the time he came home, he always found his father in the same position in front of the TV. There would be cans all over the once spotless living room and every day his pa would yell at him to pick them up. The home cooked meals were replaced with takeout. There had been the casseroles their neighbours would bring but as time passed they lessened until Will was fairly certain that they had forgotten about his mother's death.
His loving family home had quickly turned into a hell that he only escaped when he went to school. Things worsened when his pa started to leave home coming back angry and drunk. He would hit him for being a bad boy and blame him for losing at cards. Will had learned to hide when that happened since he always ended up passing out on the couch after a bit of hollering. He never understood what he did wrong and tried so hard to make his pa happy again but nothing he did made his pa smile anymore. Will even made a card for his pa's birthday. When his ma had been there, they would hang it on the fridge and his pa would pick him up. He had always felt so safe when he would hold him close. That night however he had cried himself to sleep clutching the pieces that his pa had thrown in his face. What hurt the most had been the fact that his Pa hadn't even tried to read it. He knew his pa still loved him though because the next morning he hugged Will and told him he was sorry.
It wasn't until the man had come to their home that things got really bad. Will came home from school to find a stranger sitting in the kitchen with his pa. They had stopped talking as soon as he arrived but he knew that it could not be good. He had read the words "Property Seizure" before pa had taken it out of view. That night he was given a backpack and told to pack his stuff. They had been sleeping in the car ever since. He no longer went to school and he missed it. Even though he had no friends, it was better than this. At least he had never gone hungry or woken up in pain from the bruises and sores. Will rested his head back against the seat and fell into a restless sleep.
Will woke with a start. His heart was pounding in his chest as he trashed around in fear. He looked frantically around before he realized that he was safe in the truck. The sky was dark and the parking lot was completely deserted. His father was not back yet and the poorly lit area looked even scarier than before. He closed the window quickly and made sure that all the doors were locked before he settled back in his seat. He looked around as he waited patiently. Swivelling his head every few minutes half expecting his pa to be there heading his way. However, hours passed and still there was no sign of him.
Fear went through him as doubt filled him. Did his pa abandon him? He shook the thought away.
No, Pa said he would be back.He reassured himself.
Will knew without a doubt that pa was not lying. He always knew when someone was being dishonest just like he knew which person to target to get as much money as possible for his pa when he did his rounds. He knew which people would most likely notice if he tried anything. Maybe pa was still angry because he had failed getting enough. He had made the mistake of not looking into the other people around his target. A big scary man started yelling as soon as he reached into the old lady's purse. The rest was a blur as he ran as fast as he could with footsteps pounding after him. He ran all the way to the place where his pa was waiting for him. There was no doubt that he would show up.
He reached in the back for his stuffed dog Winston and held him close. It had a white and gold fur. He clearly remembered his ma giving it to him for his birthday. The fur used to be so clean and soft but it was grubby now. Despite how dirty it had become, it was still his favourite toy since Winston never failed to make him feel better. He stroked the fur absentmindedly as he continued to wait. Eventually he could see the sky become lighter and there was still no sign of his pa.
He was dozing off when the sound of the car unlocking startled him awake. His face lit up as he realized that his pa must be back but reeled back in shock when he saw a stranger. The man had dark skin and he wore a nice suit. An agent or a detective of some sort. He clutched Winston tighter as he looked at the officer and his entourage. There were a lot more cars in the parking lot than there were not there last night. The people were standing around yellow tape that he knew were there to keep people away from a crime scene. Someone had died. He glanced between the black man holding his pa's keys and the yellow tape with dread. Will opened the car door and ran passed the officer barely escaping his clutches.
"Wait! Hey, kid!" He heard the man yell as he squeezed through the throng of people. The sight that greeted him when succeeded was the most horrific thing he had ever seen.
"Pa!" Will yelled as hands wrapped around his waist lifting him before he could move closer. He screamed and struggled. Scratched and bit anything he could reach but whoever was holding him would not relent. "Let go! Let me go! That's my pa!"
Blood rushed to Will's head as his breathing quickened. Dead. Pa was dead. He had nobody and he knew that no one would want him. His vision quickly blackened as each breath became a trial.
Jack Crawford stared at the kid he was holding in surprise. With the way he had been struggling, none of the paramedics had been able to get close enough to sedate him. He had not expected the little boy to suddenly faint. He quickly handed him over to the nearest ambulance attendant.
"What's wrong with him?" He asked as he watched the sandy haired man check the child over.
"He had a severe panic attack. From what I can tell, he's malnourished as well which explains his sudden loss of consciousness."
"When do you think he will wake up again? He may be a witness." There had never been someone so close to the crime scene of the Chesapeake Ripper. If the kid saw anything, they could finally get an edge over the sick bastard. He could tell that the boy had been in that truck for a while so he must have at least heard or seen something.
"The poor kid just lost his father. I doubt the doctors at the hospital will allow anyone to question him for a while. They'll probably bring in a child psychiatrist from the looks of it too." One of the paramedics replied with a glare as they quickly packed the kid into the ambulance.
"Hey, Jack!" He heard Beverly call as he watched the emergency vehicle drive away. The throng of reporters parted as he made his way through.
"Got anything, Katz."
"Afraid not, boss. As clean as a whistle."
"Do we have an ID?" He asked the rest of his team.
"One Thomas Graham from Louisiana. The ripper did a number on this one." Said one of the agents while handing him the victim's driver's license that had been found in the truck.
Jack watched as the carcass was fitted into a black body bag. He wished they could have done that before the kid had had the misfortune of seeing his own father's dead body. Especially in the state that the Chesapeake Ripper had left it. Without a doubt, this was the most gruesome body yet and he was even more determined to catch the son of a bitch but first he needed to call Alana Bloom. If she was the psychiatrist for the kid, he would get the information he needed much faster. Even though she was quite young, he was sure that Alana would do a great job. He looked down at the driver's license and wondered what was it about this guy that had made the Ripper sloppy enough to leave an actual witness. There had to be something there and he would make sure to find out what it was.
Thank you for reading :)
I hope to get many reviews. Please be gentle as this is my first Hannibal fic.
By the way, this is also cross posted on ao3 under gaara_winds