Written for a kink-meme I promised I would start uploading in June. JUNE. I'm a terrible person.
Will doesn't know what to expect for his first day at the prison. He was told by his superiors that it should be easy. All he had to do was patrol a specific section of the prison and make sure the inmates didn't cause trouble for both the guards or themselves. Truth be told Will didn't even want to be doing this. Up until recently he was just an ordinary police officer in Baltimore, but an arrest gone wrong left him with a knife wound in his shoulder. He wanted out of law enforcement, but his superiors wouldn't let him go, even after all he'd been through. This was their way of letting Will "relax", keep his mind sharp, and get over the shock of the attack before he made any hasty decisions.
Slipping out of the main hall, Will follows an older guard whose name tag reads "Jack" as he shows him where he's to be stationed. Jack is nice enough, but Will can tell he would rather be somewhere else. He informs Will because of his injury he is to be placed in the low risk – inmates who are either to be released soon or they are "well behaved" and deemed not a threat.
"Now," Jack starts. "If there's a problem you just hit the red button at the end of the hall." He gives Will a once over before shrugging. "Or take care of them yourself. Even with your shoulder you have more experience out in the field than most of the guards here." This makes Will pause.
"What do you mean? I thought there were qualifications to be a prison guard."
The older guard nods. "There are, but the Warden just hires any he thinks are either strong or can handle a gun. There are men who, like you and me, know what their doing, but they're becoming fewer and fewer by the years. Soon this place will be run by thick brained muscle men who are too trigger happy. I hope I'm gone by the time that happens." Jack turns to continue walking and Will obediently follows.
"But how can the Warden get away with that?" Will asks. "Hasn't someone said anything?"
"Even if they did," Jack grumbles, "Nobody would listen. The Warden's got people." The walk is quiet as Will is lead through his section and other low risk zones, looking at the inmates and getting a feel for what he is up against. Soon they are walking through the zones and to the locker rooms, the cafeteria, and finally back to the main hall. Jack looks at his watch and seems to mull over something. Will stands quietly as the guard comes to a conclusion and jerks his head to the left.
"Come on. I'll show you where the other sections are. Just in case you need to go there. It's unlikely, but just so you know."
As they climb to the different levels of the prison, Jack rattles off names of the different inmates along with their level of risk.
"The only one you should keep your eye on in your section is Franklyn Froidevaux. He's been here for two years as an accomplice to Tobias Budge's murder. The guy ratted out Budge and got a lighter sentence. He won't cause you any troubles, but don't get too close to him. The inmates are all allowed access to the yard outside and that's where Froidevaux has been known to grab onto other inmates and guards. He doesn't mean trouble, but he gets too attached. Found himself in solitary a few times already,"
"What of his partner?" Will asks. "Tobias?"
"Budge is usually in the medium level section, but currently he's been sent to solitary for escaping his cell and attacking Froidevaux when he was out in the yard. He's one to look out for as well." Will nods in understanding and the guard continues to name off the important inmates, giving the reason why they were at the prison as well as horror stories of what they've done while at their stay. They soon walk pass a door that is adorned with locks and heavily guarded.
"This," Jack points to the door. "This is where we keep the inmates who have been deemed as unstable or extremely dangerous. This is level higher than the high risk, the red zone. If any of the inmates escape from this section all Hell would break loose." He chuckles. "Granted, sometimes they are allowed out in a special spot in the yard by themselves, but only if they behave."
"Who's in there?" Will asks, but Jack shakes his head.
"You don't want to know. However," Jack sighs, suddenly looking much older. "You probably will hear stories about them. Do you know anything about Dr. Hannibal Lecter?"
"Dr. Hannibal Lecter?" Will echoes. "The name sounds vaguely familiar."
"As it should. His face was everywhere twelve years back. How old are you, Graham?"
"I'm twenty-seven, sir," Will answers, "I was maybe fourteen at the time of Lecter's capture. I didn't have much means of public media, and when I did it was local news only." Now that Will thinks about it, he did remember learning about Dr. Lecter while he was in college and training to be a cop. He had heard the stories and knows very well what the good doctor did for his free time. However, he can not for the life of him remember what he looks like.
Jack just nods his head at Will's explanation before continuing their journey back to the main lobby. "Trust me when I say this: the less you know about Dr. Lecter, the better. Understand?"
Will just simply nods.
The rest of the days at the prison go smoothly. Will goes on his rounds in low risk, checking on the inmates and making sure they're behaving. By the end of the first week some of the inmates call him by name, usually just saying "hi". Will wishes he got along as well with his fellow guards. Most of them ignore Will, marking him as an outcast. Will is use to this sort of treatment from his childhood, so it doesn't bother him too much. He does wonder though if their distaste of him stems from the fact the Warden didn't hand pick him as he did with the others. Perhaps it is because of his experience on the filed, or maybe because by the second and third weeks he had gained the affection of almost every inmate in his section. They all call him "Pup", which at first Will thought was their way of making fun of him. However, Franklyn told him differently.
"It's because you look so lost half the time. Makes some of the fellas want to reach out and pat you on the head," Will isn't sure if this explanation makes the nickname any better or worse. Unfortunately, when Will has to patrol a different section – also a low risk zone – they all recognize him as "The Pup". Because trying to get them to stop would be near impossible, Will ignores the nickname as best as he can.
It's even harder to ignore when the guards are aware of it as well. However, unlike the inmates, when they use the name it is scornful and mocking. Will often times hears them calling him "bitch", but they are wise enough not to say it in his face.
Not all is bad with his fellow guards. Jack sometimes sits and talks with him on occasion at lunch, or he patrols with him. Another guard, Barney, is fast on making it to Will's small friend list. The guard had been working at the prison about as long as Jack, but he mostly stays in the high risk and red zone. Barney tells Will stories about his family or about what had happened in the prison. He usually works behind the lock adorned door where Dr. Hannibal Lecter was kept. However, he was reluctant to tell any stories about him.
"Lecter isn't too much of a bad guy. You don't disrespect him, he won't disrespect you." He says one day in the lunch room, biting into a ham sandwich. "He doesn't tolerate rudeness. That was his M.O before he was caught. He only took those who were rude."
"Sounds charming," Will mutters, picking at his own food. His pain medications are making him lose his appetite, granted the cafeteria food isn't all appealing. "Remind me why you like him?"
Barney chuckles before ruffling Will's hair. "That snarky attitude of yours is going to get you into trouble," he teases. "When you've been around as long as I have you form a friendship of sorts with the inmates. The ones that behave anyway. I've been here long before Dr. Lecter arrived and through all the years of his incarceration we've gotten on the right foot. However," Barney pauses and gives Will a stern look. "Don't think for a second I've looked over the reason why he's here. Just because we get along and I enjoy his company does not mean I trust him. You remember that. Don't become too attached to any of the inmates."
"Note taken," Will replies, growing uncomfortable at Barney's stare. He looks down at the food in front of him. "Besides, I'm only here for six months. The likelihood of me getting stationed at Dr. Lecter's zone is unlikely."
Over the next two months Will listens to the stories the guards tell one another, most of them about Dr. Lecter. Will catches glimpses of the conversations as he patrols or sits in the cafeteria. Currently, he's standing in the locker room, slipping his jacket off as a group of guards who seem to be a bit young enter the room, talking quietly amongst themselves.
"I heard he ripped some woman's face off with his bare hands," one guard exclaims.
"Bull-shit," argues another. "there's no way he could have done that!"
"But it's true! It was in the papers."
"I heard he chopped up a Federal Agent who was too close to catching him,"
"Didn't he make someone eat their own arm before killing them?"
"How about the time he bit the nurse's face. The hag was ugly before, but I bet she has to pay someone to fuck her now."
The comment earns a laugh from the entire group and Will has to make himself unclench his fists from his jacket. This sort of behavior wouldn't have been allowed back where Will was from. The chief would have bitten anybody's head off if he heard them bad mouthing any woman, no matter what she had done or looked like. These boys didn't have any respect for women, hell they didn't have respect for anyone. They had gotten over quietly making fun of Will behind his back to now opening calling him names in his face. If Will wasn't injured he would have immediately punched the first one to call him "bitch" in the mouth. These guards were reckless, they weren't suited to be prison guards; to be in charge of keeping dangerous men in their cells.
"Hey, I didn't know they allowed dogs in the prison now. Better make sure he doesn't piss everywhere," One guard, Freddy Lounds, says loudly, bringing all the attention towards Will. His friends laugh and make comments while Will grits his teeth and silently seethes.
These boys are rude.
Will is called into the Warden's office at the end of the third month. He met him once on his first day, and at the time he didn't quite know what to make of the man except for the feeling that something was off in the man. After hearing how he picks the guards, his opinion of the Warden slips down further. The Warden, Dr. Chilton, stands when Will enters his office, a smile on his face. Will weakly smiles back.
"Hello, Mr. Graham. I bet you're wondering why I called you in today." Will gives a slight inclination of his head before Chilton continues. "You see, Barney Matthews is going to be out of commission for a couple of weeks and we need someone to pick up his shift," Dr Chilton explains, his hands moving with each word. "Since there are plenty of guards in your section, I've decided to move you to Barney's station. Just until he's better." Will stares at Chilton for a moment, letting the information sink in. Realization soon takes over.
"But Barney's section is in the red zone. I was told I wouldn't have to go there because of my injury."
"Yes, initially," Chilton begins slowly, a smile still on his face. "But since you seem to be getting better I've decided to move you. And before you say anything," Chilton adds, watching as Will's mouth opens to object. "I've already asked your superiors and they agreed. Look," He pulls out a folder and the file with his boss's signature. "They have already agreed with me."
Will snatches the paper from Chilton's hands, and with every word he reads dread begins to overcome him. The Warden still has a smile on his face as Will lowers the paper.
"Good to see you understand. You start tomorrow."
Will takes a few tentative steps into the corridor, listening as the door swings shut behind him and relocks. The red zone wasn't any different than the low risk with the exception of the cells being further apart from each other, and thick glass keeping the inmates inside. Will stands still a few moments, trying to get the courage to walk down the corridor. It's silly, Will thinks, to be frightened in a section filled with crazy people safely put away behind locked doors. He's dealt with the insane before, but he always had his partner beside him or his fellow officers. Now, he was alone. There was only one guard allowed in the red zone, which seemed strange to Will. He remembers Barney mentioning this a few days before he went on sick leave.
"It's so if one of the inmates breaks out there are less casualties. Better one to be dead than two. At least that's what the Warden says." Will could tell at the time Barney didn't agree with Chilton's mindset, and he couldn't blame him.
So Will stands alone, silently looking down the corridor. In the back of Will's mind he knew there was nothing to be frightened of, but the knowledge of Dr. Lecter being in one of the cells truly terrifies him. He failed to ask Chilton which cell was his, but it was too late now. Taking a deep breath, Will began to walk, his steps echoing loudly in the silent corridor.
The first few inmates are sleeping, and the next completely ignores him. Some turn to look as he walks, but lose interest and return to staring at the walls or, if they were lucky, reading a book. This keeps going until Will begins to walk closer to the end of the hall. As he peers into one of the cells, he finds the inmate is already staring in his direction with such an intensity it makes Will jump a little. The man's face is completely blank, eyes following him as he passes the cell. Unlike the other inmates, this one continues to watch until Will is out of sight. Unnerved by this, Will is reluctant to turn around and head back to the door. He waits a few moments, pretending to double check the empty cell at the very end before walking again.
The man is still watching, his eyes now curious as Will passes by. Feeling the need to do something, anything, Will nods in greeting before ducking his head down and continuing on his way.
"So," a calm voice calls to him. "You must be Officer Graham."
Will freezes in place, the inmate of the cell he's standing in front of looks at him curiously before ignoring him. Will takes a moment to breathe before stepping forward again.
"You know, it's rude to ignore someone when they are talking to you." the man speaks again, and Will can hear the underlying danger if he continues to ignore him.
No, Will knew who this was.
Taking another breath Will returns to stand in front of the inmate's cell. The inmate is standing now, close to the front corner of the cell as if trying to get closer to Will. Once Will's in sight again the man stands in the center of the cell, eyes taking in the image of Will. In return, Will shifts uncomfortably before getting a grip on himself.
"Dr. Hannibal Lecter, I presume." Will says, hoping it didn't sound as pathetic as he thought it did. The man smiles and inclines his head.
"It's so good to know people still remember me even after I've been away for so long." Will decides against telling the man he only recently remembered that he even existed. The other might find it rude. Instead, Will shrugs his good shoulder.
"You're all the guards talk about," He explains. "Kinda hard to not hear about you." This earns him a chuckle, Hannibal's strange eyes continuing to bore into him. Will decides that looking at the man's chest was less unnerving. "However, that doesn't explain how you know my name."
A secretive smile crosses Hannibal's features. "Even though I'm in this lovely establishment," Hannibal says as he gestures around his cell. "I am still allowed out side once in awhile."
"For good behavior," Will supplies. "Barney wouldn't have given out my name, which means you overheard another inmate or guard talking about me."
"Very good." Will could see Hannibal's expression had shifted from secretive to amused. "Why won't you look me in the eyes, Officer Graham?" Will flinched but tried to pull it off as a shrug. He could tell Hannibal wasn't buying it.
"I don't have to tell you."
"You don't, do you?"
The two stand in silence; Hannibal staring at Will's face while Will continues to look at Hannibal's blue prison garb. Compared to the other inmates in the prison, Hannibal's outfit looked well taken care of. There were no stains or dirt to be seen. Will guessed he was a clean freak. Everything must be in place; everything must be spotless.
"Where is Barney, if I may ask?" Hannibal draws Will's attention back to the present conversation. He blinks and looks down the hall where he's supposed to stand during his time in the section.
"He is gone for a couple days," Will says. "I'm taking his place until he returns."
"I see," Lecter replies. Something in his tone makes Will look at him and he notices the small smile. "So we have plenty of time to get acquainted then."
Will makes the mistake of looking up into his eyes, the dark orbs calculating and curious. Will cannot hold back a shiver before he narrows his eyes.
"Good day, Dr. Lecter." And he starts to leave for his post. Hannibal says nothing, but Will can tell the man is amused. After all, Will was stuck in the section for the next two hours. In fifteen minutes he would have to check on the inmates again, and, once again, have to pass by Hannibal.
He was not going to enjoy this.
He can tell, however, that Hannibal was enjoying this. A lot.
Each time Will walks past the man's cell, Hannibal tries to strike a conversation with him.
What's your name?
Why won't you tell me your name?
Why are you working here, Officer Graham?
This isn't a permanent job, is it, Officer Graham?
You're being rude. Why won't you talk to me?
You know what happens to rude people, don't you, Officer Graham?
Will remained silent each time, but his posture was stiff. Even when he's standing near the doors he can hear Hannibal trying to get him to come back. He's passed by his door six times: thrice down the hall and thrice back to the doors. He didn't want to go down again, didn't want to have Dr. Lecter try and coax him into a conversation. He had heard the stories.
Sighing, he begins to walk down the hall for a seventh time, rubbing at his shoulder. The pain medication had worn off in the previous hour, and it was starting to become unbearable. While it had been three months since the attack the wound was not healing properly. In his sleep he would scratch and rub at it, irritating the skin to the point of drawing blood. He had to go in and get it restitched because of his unconscious behavior.
Rotating the shoulder, Will didn't notice he had passed Hannibal's cell until the man spoke.
"What's wrong with your shoulder?"
Will quickly removes his hand from the wounded limb and guiltily ducks his head.
"Nothing's wrong with it." Hannibal gently "tsked" before motioning Will closer to the glass.
"Let me take a look." Will gave the man a horrified look and Hannibal laughed. "I was once a surgeon, Officer Graham. I think I can help you with your problem."
Will continues to stare at Hannibal before giving a humorless laugh. "No. No, thank-you, Dr. Lecter." Will says, beginning to walk away. "I know what's wrong with it."
"Is it the reason you're here, Officer Graham?"
Will contemplates ignoring him, but eventually he sighs and turns to face him. "Yes, it is."
"...I was attacked on the job. Instead of giving me time off, my superiors sent me here. Didn't want my mind to languish away." Will snorts, scratching his face. His stubble is getting longer, he notes.
"How did it happen, the attack?" Hannibal asks, head tilted slightly to the side. Will dares to look at his face and finds the man is looking curiously at his shoulder, as if he can try and see the damage done underneath the clothing.
"My partner and I got separated, and before I knew it the man jumped me from behind and stabbed me in the shoulder." The shoulder in question begins to throb in pain once more, and Will starts to rub it.
Will immediately drops his hand before he can register what's happened. He glares at Dr. Lecter, but Hannibal smiles, pleased with Will's actions. In retaliation, Will walks away, ignoring Hannibal's attempts to call him back. He doesn't keep at it, falling silent when he realizes Will is not going to return. He doesn't need to worry though. He'll be back in next fifteen minutes.
It's a half our before Will's shift is over when the doors swing open. Will jumps, turning to watch as two guards walk in, laughing at some earlier made comment. When they spot Will, they fall silent.
"Hey, this isn't your section, bitch. Why are you here?"
Will grits his teeth and forces the urge to punch Freddy in the face. He can't afford to get into a fight. While he could easily overtake a man such as Freddy, with the other guard present and his shoulder acting up he knew the odds were against him. For now.
"Chilton sent me here just until Mr. Matthews returns from sick leave," Will says, folding his arms over his chest. "My shift isn't over, and I was told only one guard is allowed in the red zone." The other guard looks away guiltily, but Freddy just scoffs.
"As of right now it is, and you don't get to tell us what to do, bitch. Just because you're a high and mighty police officer doesn't mean shit here. Now, run off back to the safety of the baby section." Laughing again, Freddy walks off, dismissing Will completely. The other guard looks at Will for a moment before following after Freddy. Will watches as they pass the cells, taking note that they don't even look in them to check on the inmates. Shaking in anger, Will turns to leave.
"That was rude," He hears faintly and he freezes.
Turning back around, Will sees Freddy and the other guard have paused and are standing in front of Lecter's cell. Even from where Will is standing, both men look terrified. Will cannot hear the rest of the conversation, but soon Freddy is returning to his side, face red with either anger or embarrassment.
"I'm... Sorry, Officer Graham. It... It won't happen again."
Will blinked, glancing at the other guard who stayed at Dr. Lecter's cell before looking back at Freddy.
"...I accept your apology." Will says, and Freddy's face turns redder. Will stays rooted in place, confused at the whole ordeal. When he turns to leave again, Lecter's voice calls out to him.
"Have a good day, Officer Graham. I look forward to seeing you tomorrow."
Flinching, Will all but runs out of the section. He doesn't calm down until the security doors shut and lock behind him.