Based off a prompt I saw awhile back (I was going to copy the prompt summary but I completely blanked). The anon wanted a story about Will being in an abusive relationship and then meets Hannibal. This story is not exactly what anon wanted, but I got pretty close.
Also, I'm realizing that FF.N's formatting is messing with my story layouts. I apologize if there has been confusion or clutter in any of my works. I will be going back through them and editing them over Christmas break.
Will pulled at his sleeves as he prepared supper, anxiously looking at the clock every few minutes. His mate would be home soon, and if he didn't like it when his food was late. Will made sure everything was in order before rushing to the entry door. His mate also didn't like it when the omega wasn't there to greet him. Will stood near the door, ears trained to catch the sound of a car or footsteps. He was doing better, his mate had told him, and all Will wanted to do was please his mate. He wanted everything to be perfect.
He was smoothing down his apron when he heard a car pull into the drive way, the snow crushing underneath the tires. He flinched as he heard the door slam shut and his mate's heavy footsteps pounded toward the house. Putting on a smile, Will waited patiently for his mate, fingers worrying the cuff of his sleeves. When the front door opened, he held his arms out to take the alpha's jacket with a "welcome home". His mate gave him his jacket, but ignored everything else about him. He walked past Will, not bothering to take his shoes off. Will flinched as he saw the dirt and mud being tracked through the house, but did not say anything. He would clean it up after his mate took a shower.
Hanging up the jacket, Will followed the trail to the living room to where his mate had plopped down on the sofa and turned on the tv. Will wrinkled his nose in distaste as the alpha put his feet on the coffee table, but remained silent. His mate was in a bad mood; something at work must have gone wrong. Will brushed his hands down his apron and played with his sleeves again. It would be unwise to try and speak when his mate was in this state, but the food was done and he knew his alpha didn't like cold supper.
He edged closer to the sofa and gently cleared his throat. "Supper is ready, dear."
The alpha made no move, and Will became nervous.
"I bought some steak today when I was out doing errands," Will continued, clasping his hands tightly together. He remembered his mate had made a passive aggressive comment on how Will never cooked anything with beef, and he made sure to add it to his grocery list.
But his mate didn't move. He continued to surf through the channels, not once pausing to see what was on. Will tried one more time.
"Would you like me to bring the food out here? It would be more comfortable here than the dinning room."
His mate stopped flipping through channels. He continue to gaze at the television screen before turning his gaze to Will. The omega flinched and looked down, hands now playing with this sleeves again.
"William," Will flinched again at the sound of the alpha's voice. It was too calm. "We can't eat in the living room, you know that. What if you dropped food on the floor, hm? It would make a mess and stain the carpet. Now," His mate stood up, and Will couldn't help but step back. "if you dropped food in the dinning room it wouldn't matter for the floor is hardwood. Easy to clean."
The alpha stepped closer, and Will forced himself not to step back again. His mate raised a hand and stroked Will's face, forcing him to make eye contact. They stared at one another before his mate smiled. "Did you say you made steak?"
Will nodded, and he tried to smile. His mate continued to smile, giving Will's face one last time before brushing his hair away from his face. He then grasped the springy curls and pulled hard. Will yelped and grabbed hold of the alpha's wrist, but this caused his mate to pull harder.
"You stupid thing. If I recall from this morning, I asked you to make lamb stew." He pulled again, dragging the omega closer. Will whimpered, protests bubbling up his throat that his mate had not mentioned anything this morning.
Perhaps he did and you just forgot. A dark voice whispered in the back of his mind. It was pushed aside as Will was forced to his hands and knees. His alpha kept a firm grip on his hair, making him bow at an angle. "Who is your alpha?"
"You are, sir." Will whimpered.
"And who are you?"
"Your omega, sir."
"That's right, and you have to do anything and everything I say. Isn't that right, bitch." his mate growled, yanking hard on the black curls. Will almost let out a sob before he managed to get a hold of himself.
"Now what do you say?"
Will was silent for a moment, but not long enough for his mate to become angry. "I'm sorry, sir. It won't happen again. I'm yours to command."
His mate chuckled and loosened his hold on his hair. Shocked, Will dared to raise his head, just a little. He was rewarded with a slap across the face.
"You really are a stupid omega." his mate growled, rolling the sleeves of his work shirt up. Will kept his head down, his body starting to shake.
There was going to be more stains in the carpet to clean up.
Will was on his hands and knees again, this time with a bucket of soapy water. His mate became bored with him after a few blows and he left him lying in the living room. He ate his supper, but threw Will's portions away.
"If you're hungry then dig it out of the trash." He had said before climbing up the steps to take a shower. That was okay, Will wasn't feeling particularity hungry anymore.
He scrubbed at the dirt the alpha had tracked earlier, knowing if he didn't get the stains out then he would be beaten again. He didn't a repeat performance, but he usually got them whether he liked it or not. Will bit back the tears as he scrubbed harder, his fingers raw as they continually rubbed against the rough fabric of the rag and carpet. He was doing better, his mate had said. He was improving, getting to know what he should and shouldn't do. What was he doing wrong? Why wasn't he making his alpha happy?
The shower turned off, and Will couldn't hold back the sob as he scrubbed faster.
He said he was getting better.
Will walked through the produce foods section in the supermarket in a daze, his arms throbbing as he picked up items needed for supper and put them in a basket. His mate had specifically told him he wanted lasagna tonight, and Will didn't want to let the alpha down. He yawned, momentarily closing his eyes. It was so hot in the supermarket, even for being in the produce section, but he didn't dare take his jacket or gloves off. Someone might see the bruises.
His eyes were still shut as he rounded the corner, and he didn't see the other shopper until it was too late to stop. Upon collision, Will lost his grasp on his groceries, spilling them on the floor.
"Oh! I'm so sorry, sir. Are you all right?" He asked, unconcerned for the fallen ingredients. The man he bumped into looked momentarily surprised, but quickly regained his composure.
"I'm quite all right," the stranger said softly, his voice strange. "No harm done."
But the man's scent flowed over Will's nose, marking him as an alpha.
"I'm terribly sorry," Will continued on, expecting the man to strike him. However, the man simply waved him off.
"It is no problem at all," the stranger said softly, a smile on his face. "But I made you drop your basket. Here, let me help." Will was left speechless as the alpha knelt in expensive looking clothes and picked up a few of the items. Will joined too after he regained his senses. Together they were able to seek out all of the scattered items and put them back into the basket. Will thanked and apologized again, and the stranger continued to smile. Will found he liked his smile, it was oddly soothing. And his scent wasn't too overpowering, just enough to mark his status as an alpha. He was also very prim and well groomed, and Will wanted nothing more than to come closer to him.
Will shook his head to rid of his last thought. He was a mated omega. He was off limits. Will turned to leave, but the alpha stopped him.
"Are you making lasagna?" he asked.
"Um, yes I am." Will answered, drawing the basket closer to him. The other man had taken on a nonthreatening stance, but it still put Will on guard. The alpha continued to smile.
"If I may make a suggestion." He reached into Will's basket and picked up a can of tomatoes. "If you use real tomatoes instead of the canned the dish will taste much better. I find you won't regret it."
Will blinked before smiling. "Oh! I never thought of that. Thank-you." Will sought out where the tomatoes were located, knowing they couldn't be far from where they were standing.
"Are you cold?" The stranger asked.
"Hmm?" Will turned his attention back to the alpha and saw him gesture to his gloved hands.
"You're still wearing your gloves," he clarified. "And your jacket is still zipped. The temperature is decent in here, I think. Do you have poor blood circulation?"
Will wished he could hide his hands in his pockets or behind his back, but to do so would mean to move the basket as well. Instead he tightened his hands around the handles and tried to draw attention away from them.
"I'm pretty sensitive to the cold, even for being an omega," he lied. "I'm not going to be here for long, so I thought I would just leave my jacket on. As for the gloves, I just leave them on even when I'm inside. It keeps the germs away." he chuckled. The alpha smiled, but his gaze hardened. He couldn't have known Will was lying. Could he? Will was starting to become aware of the sweat on the back of his neck and how flush his face must look. The stranger's nose flared.
"Well, thanks again for the tip, sir. I should get going. My mate gets off work in a few hours and I need to start-"
"Y-yes." Will answered, thrown by the question. The alpha didn't respond. He watched Will curiously, and Will could see his nose flare slightly again. It made Will uncomfortable. He wasn't trying to cover his mate's scent, so he couldn't figure out why he didn't smell like him. Also, he didn't want to send a wrong message to an alpha. If his mate caught wind...
Will brought his sleeve up to his nose and sniffed. "Don't I smell like him?"
"You do," the stranger reassured. "But it took me awhile to capture the scent, for it is very faint." The alpha paused and glanced around the market. It was surprisingly quiet for a Monday afternoon, only a handful of shoppers here and there. Most of them were out of hearing distance.
"It's not my place to ask," the stranger began, and Will was immediately on guard. "But-"
"I really must go, sir," Will interrupted, backing away from the alpha. He didn't want to be questioned. He just wanted to be a good omega for his mate. No matter how much he beat him, no matter how much he couldn't tolerate the man, he was still his mate. "Thank-you for the advice. Good day, sir."
Will turned and ran from the section, trying to put distance between him and the strange alpha. In his hurry, he forgot to grab a tomato and it was only when he was in his car on his way home did he realize the stranger still had his can of tomatoes in his hand.
Will fixed his sleeves as he sat at his desk in his office, looking over his student's papers. It was mid-term season and both students and teachers were stressed from the work load. Will didn't mind having to grade papers. It took his mind off what he needed to do at home and his problems with his mate. The alpha was being all, for lack of a better term, "lovey", and it made Will nervous. The man expressed how he wanted to go on a trip, and since Spring Break was coming up soon both he and Will would have the week off. Will wasn't sure how he felt about going on a vacation, but there would be no other options. His mate was still in a tiff because Will kept his job as a teacher, but they both knew an extra income would do them good. Especially if they were going to try and have kids.
A knock at the door drew Will's attention away from his papers, and he saw Alana waiting patiently to be admitted. Dr. Alana Bloom was a beta Psychology teacher who's office was a little ways away from Will's, who was a Criminology teacher. Will smiled and waved her in.
"You're always so busy," she joked, giving him a gentle nudge. Will clamped his mouth shut as she put pressure on a particularly dark bruise, and gave her a forced smile.
"The harder I work, the faster I can be done with grading." he reasoned.
"True," replied Alana as took a sip from her coffee mug. "Are you almost done?"
"Almost, just need to finish up with a couple papers. Have you finished?"
"Nearly, but I should be done by tomorrow," she smiled. "What are you doing tonight?"
Will paused and glanced at the ceiling, pretending to ponder on the question. He knew what he would be doing tonight. It was the same thing he had been doing for the past year and a half. He would go home, start making supper, clean, maybe sneak in reading a book, wait for his mate to arrive, and then tiptoe around him until he went to bed. Usually they went to bed at different times, his mate nodding off before him, allowing him some free time to read, clean, or make himself presentable for the next day. It never changed.
"I don't know," Will finally answered. "Why? What are you doing?"
"Bev and some of the other staff and I were thinking of heading down to the bar for some drinks. You know, a sort of "thank God mid-terms are over" thing. It will be real fun." She winked, and Will laughed.
"I would love to, but I don't think I'll be able to make it."
"Will..." Alana gave him a look, and Will know he was in for another "talk". "You never go out anymore. Well, you never really used to go out, but now you never go out. Also, you never used to like long sleeves." Will pulled at his jacket, hiding his hands under his desk. Alana sighed. "Will-"
"I'm taking care of it." Will responded.
"Will I'm a psychologist-"
"Who is not going psychoanalyze me in my own office."
"And I know there's a problem-"
"He can't help himself."
"That's what they all say."
Will dared to look up and saw the disapproving look on the beta's face. There was silence before Will sighed. "What time are you guys going?"
Alana smiled. "We're going down to the Moor Pub around 8 and probably staying until close."
When Will still didn't look convinced Alana coaxed, "Come on, Will. It's Friday. You deserve to go out and have some fun."
Will sighed and shook his head. "I don't know. How about I text you when I finally decide."
Alana beamed and gave Will a quick hug. "I'll hold you to it."
Will smiled as well, but when Alana left he gently rubbed at his shoulders, his thoughts miles away.
Will cleared the table as his mate got ready for bed. His cellphone was silent, but he knew Alana was still waiting for a response. He glanced at the clock, seeing that it was 8:45pm. She said they would stay until close, but he didn't really know who all was going. He knew Alana and Beverly would be there, but who else? He knew there were some teachers who didn't like him, and he didn't want to be any trouble. But it had been a long time since he had gone out. He hadn't done anything fun since he became mated.
Will stopped cleaning and stood at the sink. His mate would soon be asleep, too deep in slumber to really notice if he was gone. Plus, the Pub was a short walk from his house, so he didn't have to risk waking his mate when he started the car.
Drying his hands, Will quietly padded over to his jacket and pulled out his cellphone.
I'll be down at 10.
Will was nervous the first half hour of being at the Pub, looking over his shoulder and glancing at his cellphone every five minutes to see if his mate had found out he was missing. After awhile, and a drink later, he relaxed and began to enjoy his time. He talked mostly with Beverly and Alana, finding the two betas were much easier to talk to than the others. It was strange to see his co-workers in a casual environment, holding beers and gossiping about students. It was so normal, and Will forgot how nice it felt to be at ease.
By eleven Will stopped looking at his phone, having an easy conversation with another omega. They talked about their students, and how the semester was going so far, and other such topics which soon transformed into current events and the current buzzing topic on the news.
"Did you hear the Chesapeake Ripper stuck again?" the omega asked, looking around him as if the Ripper might pop out at nab him. "Heard the corpse was barely recognizable when the cops found him."
"But that's not the Ripper's style," Will argued, switching over to lecture mode. "He usually takes something from the body and leaves the victim's face alone. It's as if he wants people to see and know the victim. This body, on the other hand had nothing missing and the face completely desecrated."
"So you think this is a completely different murderer?"
"I think it's more likely, but I could be wrong."
Will was about to take a sip from his drink when someone bumped into him. Will looked up, ready to apologize even though he didn't do anything wrong, and froze.
"Oh, hello again," the alpha with the strange accent greeted, a smile on his face. Will simply stared, frozen in his spot. "It appears it is my turn to apologize to you for bumping into you. Hope I didn't make you spill your drink."
"Um, no, no everything is fine." Will managed to reply. The two men continued to look at each other until Alana walked up to them.
"Hannibal, I'm glad you could make it." She greeted, giving the alpha a quick hug.
"Sorry I'm late. I had some business to attend to before the weekend." The alpha, Hannibal, said.
Alana nodded before realizing Will was standing right there. "Oh! Will, you never told me you knew Hannibal."
"Actually, this is the second time we've run into each other," Hannibal smiled at his own joke before holding a hand out for Will to take. "Dr. Hannibal Lecter. It is a pleasure to see you again."
Will gave an uneasy smile and took the hand. "Will Graham, and likewise."
Hannibal's grip was surprisingly gentle as he gave a light squeeze to the hand.
"You're not wearing gloves tonight." Hannibal murmured, his eyes flashing mischievously. Will snatched his hand back and shoved it into his pocket.
"Did I miss something?" Alana asked, looking between the two men, but Hannibal shook his head.
"Nothing at all, Dr. Bloom. How about I buy the next round."
Will watched as Hannibal and Alana neared the bar, unsure what to do. Hannibal glanced back and held out a hand.
"Are you coming, Will?"
At that moment, Will caught Hannibal's scent. It was fascinating, and so... calming. Alphas shouldn't be calming. They should be aggressive, powerful, and domineering. This one was gentle, almost like a beta, but there was no questioning his status. Just like before, Will felt the need to draw closer and be surrounded by the alpha. He knew he shouldn't, but with the few drinks he's had, and a sudden longing to close to someone, Will took his hands out of his pocket and took Hannibal's.
As one o' clock rolled around, Will found himself practically attached to Hannibal's hip. He never strayed too far from the alpha, and when he wasn't talking to him the man had thrown an arm around his shoulders in a lax manner. It was soothing, comforting. If his co-workers thought it was strange that a mated omega was being too chummy with an unmated alpha, they didn't mention it. Alana seemed to encourage it, making excuses to bring them together or make them talk to one another.
Will learned Hannibal was a visiting surgeon, staying in Baltimore for a couple of months to help train the new doctors. Will also learned Hannibal practiced psychiatry on the side, and was thinking of leaving the hospital and becoming a full time therapist.
"While I'm good at both, I can work at any hour that's suitable to me, and I can make my own hours." he explained, taking a sip from his glass. He made a slight face, but it was so subtle no one would have noticed. Except for Will.
"That's the third time you've done that." Will blurted, instantly biting his lip when he realized how rude the statement sounded. Hannibal just looked at him in puzzlement. "You don't seem to enjoy what you're drinking." Will explained. "Why don't you order something else?"
Hannibal smiled and brought Will closer. "I admit I'm not a fan of these sorts of establishments. I only came down because Alana asked me to. She said there was someone I should meet."
There was a pause before Will understood that someone was meant to be him.
"I'm mated," Will said, drawing away from Hannibal's arms. The alpha let him step back, putting his hands in his lap.
"Yes, I remember." he replied, his eyes trailing along Will's arms. "And where is your mate, hm? He should be out here keeping an eye on his omega. You barely smell like him, Will, it's as if he doesn't care if another alpha tries to take you away."
"That is none of your concern." Will snipped, drawing himself in, grasping tightly at his arms. Hannibal noticed the tension and turned away so he was half facing the bar and half facing Will. Will knew this was to help calm him by taking the attention off him, but he still growled in irritation. He stood from the bar stool and muttered, "I'm going to find Alana."
Will paused and turned back to Hannibal, and Hannibal once more held a hand out to Will.
"I apologize. I didn't mean to make you uncomfortable."
Will remained guarded, his arms folded over his chest.
"I cannot help but worry for you, William. I find myself drawn to you the more I'm around you. I felt when we first met, and I'm sure you felt something too."
Will did feel something when he was around Hannibal. He felt safe. He had never felt as safe as when he was around the other man. But he had just met Hannibal, who was still a strange alpha in terms to omegas. He was also an unmated alpha talking to a mated omega. This, whatever it was, was not going to work or last.
Hannibal continued to hold his hand out, his face unreadable. Will sighed.
"No, Hannibal. Don't-"
Will's cellphone began to vibrate. He froze, feeling the vibrations rumble in his pocket. No one would text him at this hour, and those who would even think to text him were all at the bar. Except...
Will dug his phone out, the screen lit up with "1 text message" covering the screen. Will opened the message, his palms already beginning to sweat.
Where are you
There was no question mark. No punctuation. Just three words, and Will could feel the anger rolling through it.
Will flinched when Hannibal said his name, and stepped back when he tried to put his hand on his shoulder.
"I have to go."
But Will had bolted from the bar, out of the Moor Pub, and was running down the street. He had to get home.
Will clenched his hand on his knee, trying to ignore the pain in his arm as he tensed his muscles.
"Try not to move, Mr. Graham," a young nurse gently chided as she wrapped his left arm.
"Sorry," Will muttered, but he continued to look down at the floor listlessly, both eyes blackened and swollen. His whole body hurt, his arms and torso covered in bruises, but it was his left arm that hurt the most. It wasn't broken, thank God, but his wrist was sprained and his shoulder had been dislocated before he came to the hospital.
This wasn't the first time he had come to the hospital, and he was starting to recognize names and faces of all the staff members. First it was because he "tripped" and sprained his ankle on the ice. Then it was because he cut himself while "cooking". Another time it was because he was cleaning and the bookshelf fell on top of him. The latter was actually true, but his mate had a hand in helping push him in the right direction. At this point he doubted anyone believed his stories anymore.
His mate was currently in the waiting room, handling medical papers and giving a story to the doctors and nurses.
He was attacked when he was leaving the bar.
No, I wasn't with him, but he was with some co-workers.
No, he didn't say if he got a clear look at the attackers.
Why wasn't I with him? I was at home waiting for him. He said he was coming home before midnight, but never showed up. When I didn't get any response I went looking for him.
Yes, I'll keep a better eye on him. I'll make sure he doesn't get into any more trouble.
Will winced as the nurse put the finishing touches on his arm before putting it in a sling.
"You should be right as rain in a few weeks, Mr Graham," she said, a smile on her face. "Just make sure you take it easy."
Will nodded before sliding off the chair, his whole body protesting. He limped his way to the waiting room, the nurse lingering in case he needed any help. As Will drew closer, he could hear his mate's voice, and he wanted to cry. He didn't want to go home with him. He didn't want to be left alone with him. He knew if he just told someone they would help him get away, set him up in a nice home with a restraining order. But he knew those didn't work, especially in mated pairs.
Many of the police officers were from an older time where omega's were to listen to their alpha and have no opinion of their own. None of them cared if an omega was being beaten by his mate. He was just an omega. His mate was in the right for making sure his omega knew where he belonged.
Will leaned against the wall, pretending he needed to rest while he regained his senses. However, he heard footsteps hurrying in his direction. Will clenched his eyes shut, not wanting to see his mate so soon.
However, the nurse beside him stiffened. "Dr. Lecter! What are you doing here?"
Will's eyes shot open and he looked up just as Hannibal reached them, his face unreadable.
"I had forgotten something in my office." He said, but his eyes were trained on Will. Will wasn't even going to question how Hannibal knew he was at the hospital, but he was relieved. He took a deep breath, taking in the alpha's scent, and he became calm. And sleepy, so, so sleepy.
"William," Hannibal drew closer to the injured omega, his eyes taking in everything. While his face remained impassive, Will could see the fury boiling in his maroon eyes.
"I-I was attacked on my way home," he stuttered, knowing full well Hannibal wouldn't believe a word he said. "I should have asked for a ride, but the Pub is a short distance from my house I didn't think..."
Hannibal's face hardened, but when he reached out and helped Will lean against him he was gentle. Will allowed himself to be handled and lead down the hall, away from the waiting room.
"Doctor?" the nurse asked, looking back and forth between Will and Hannibal.
"It's fine, Nurse Millar. I am detaining his omega until I see he is fit to leave." Will opened his mouth to protest, but Hannibal interjected. "I will pay for your medical bill, William, but you are going to stay here."
Will wanted to argue, wanted to leave the hospital, but he was so tired, and Hannibal smelled so nice. He allowed himself to be pulled into an empty room and put into bed. Hannibal left the room, leaving the nurse with instructions before leaving to the waiting room.
The nurse asked Will a question, but he couldn't hear it. He soon fell asleep with the scent of Hannibal filling his mind.
"How are you feeling, Will?" Hannibal asked as he sat next to the omega. Will was looking much better these days. The swelling on his face had gone down, but the bruising around his eyes remained. His body protested less and less as he slept and was fed painkillers. He hadn't felt this relaxed in a long time. He didn't even mind the pain in his arm as much as he might have if he had gone straight home.
"I'm feeling better, Dr. Lecter."
"William," Hannibal chided. "You don't have to call me Dr. Lecter. I'm not working today." He joked, but Will could see the hurt expression at Will's refusal to call him by his first name.
"But you're my doctor now, aren't you?" But Hannibal shook his head and diverted the conversation.
"Has Alana come to visit?"
"Yes," Will said. "She says the substitute is doing a good job, and I might have to work hard to gain my student's affection back." He laughed, but he grew somber as his ribs protested. "When can I go home?"
"We've discussed this, Will. You're not going until I think you are fit to leave."
"And when is that?"
"Not for a long while, I'm afraid."
Will bristled and a growl left his lips before he could catch it. Hannibal looked stunned, but he suddenly smiled.
"It's good to see you still have some spirit in you, Will, and that your mate hasn't destroyed it."
"You can't keep me here forever, Hannibal!" Hannibal smiled at the use of his first name. "You are not my mate. Only he-"
"And he's doing a marvelous job of keeping you." Hannibal interrupted, his voice icy. "He doesn't take care of you, he beats you, and you don't even smell like him. A good alpha keeps his omega happy, taken care of, and always makes sure others know who he belongs to."
Will scoffs, putting his head in his hand. Hannibal is silent as Will begins to laugh, the younger man beginning to pull at his hair.
"You sound as if you would lock me away and never let me go."
"If it kept you safe, I would." Hannibal replied gravely. Will stopped laughing and looked up.
"But that wouldn't make me happy, Hannibal. I need to be out. You saw how happy I was when I was at the Pub."
Hannibal was silent, his face stoney before he sighed.
"You were happy because you weren't in an oppressed environment. If you could be in a home where you didn't fear for your life, then you would be less likely to leave. You would want to stay and continue to feel safe. Don't you want that?"
Will slumped down in the bed and stared up at the ceiling. Of course he wanted that. He wanted to be somewhere he could call home without fearing for his life. Somewhere he could walk freely without the fear of being beaten. It would feel lovely, to be safe and sound.
"I'm handling it." Will said softly.
"William, tell me, how many times has he come to visit you since you've been here?"
Silence lapsed in the room, Will refusing to look anywhere but the ceiling.
"Think about it." Will felt something slide under his hand, and he lowered his head to see a business card with Hannibal's name in gold lettering. It included an address and phone number.
"If you ever need help, just give me a call. It doesn't matter the time or the day, I'll always be there if you need me."
Hannibal left after that, his hand trailing off Will's hand as he stood. Alone in his room, Will brought the small card up to his face. It smelled just like Hannibal.
He was allowed to leave the hospital after a week. He was discouraged from going back to work, but he couldn't stand the idea of staying home all day. His mate didn't make a fuss, even encouraging him to return to work, which made Will nervous. He didn't dwell on it for too long, diving himself back into his teaching and grading. It was difficult with his arm still in a sling, but luckily he didn't have to do much considering Spring Break was coming up.
He was packing up for the end of the day when there was a knock at his door. Thinking it was Alana or Beverly, he told them to come in, continuing to pack up.
"You have a nice office, Will."
Will jumped at the sound of Hannibal's voice, whirling around to face him. The alpha's scent filled the small office, overpowering his own and quickly gentled and calmed him.
"You've got to stop doing that," Will said.
"That, with your pheromones. I'm not sure what you're doing, but it makes me so sleepy."
"I'm glad you're comfortable around me," Hannibal smiled, and William blinked.
Hannibal nodded. "Don't you know? Normally, omegas are nervous around alphas, but if it is the right alpha, then the omega will be calmed and placid. Usually this means the two are the most compatible and fit to be mates." Hannibal paused, cocking his head at Will. "Did no one tell you this?"
"I grew up in a small town in the south. The education system was not... the best." He reasoned, scratching at the back of his neck. He suddenly scowled and pointed an accusing finger at Hannibal. "You're distracting me."
"Yes. You're distracting me from asking you, 'why are you in my office?'" Will scolded, but there was no fire behind his words. Hannibal laughed and held his hands up in defense.
"I just dropped by to see if you wanted to have a late lunch with me, and before you say no," Hannibal reached into what looked like a fancy cooler and pulled out a Tupperware filled with fancy looking foods. "I thought we might have it out in the court yard. The weather is decent considering there is still snow on the ground."
Will couldn't help but laugh as he hoisted his bag over his shoulder.
"That sounds wonderful."
Over the next few days Hannibal would arrive at Will's work, and they would have lunch together either outside or inside of his office. They talked with ease, jumping from topic to topic. They never talked about Will's home life, but the conversation was hanging in the outskirts. Always present, but never brought up. Will's bruises lifted, becoming lighter and practically nonexistent. His arm was still useless, but with Hannibal's guidance Will tested the abused limb, finding it was healing well. Hannibal joked Will would be able to enter arm wrestling contests by next week, and Will couldn't find a witty retort fast enough due to his laughing.
Will found himself looking forward to Hannibal's visits, looking impatiently at the clock in the classroom or in his office until the alpha arrived. When he finally arrived, Will's mood lightened and he couldn't help but be in a good mood.
"Have you ever thought of having children?" Will asked as he ate Hannibal's newest concoction in his office. It looked like meatloaf, but it tasted divine. He couldn't put his finger on what kind of meat it was exactly, but he didn't ponder on it for long.
Hannibal considered Will's question before nodding. "I've thought of having children, but I've never had time, nor have I found anyone I would want children with."
Will missed the look Hannibal gave him as he said the last part, and when he did look up Hannibal was looking off at a painting of a sailboat. Will smiled and continued to eat.
"What about you?" Hannibal asked. "Do you want children?"
"I have the need, but as you said, not the time," Will sighed as he poked at his food. "We are not financially stable right now, so adding an additional mouth would take its toll on us."
Hannibal stiffened slightly, but didn't say anything. Will decided to change the topic. "Have you ever gone sailing?"
"Once or twice, but I must admit I prefer to stay on solid ground." Hannibal shook his head, looking over at the painting once more before slyly adding, "Of course I'm not opposed to it if you want to go out."
"But it's spring." Will uttered, confused. "And by the time the weather is nice enough you'll be going back to-"
"I was thinking more down south," Hannibal interrupted. "Maybe down in Florida. I've heard the weather is remarkable." Will sat up straighter in his chair.
"You've never been to Florida?"
"It was never on my list of places to go." Hannibal chuckled.
"Then we should go!" Will smiled, suddenly full of energy. They could rent a boat for the day and just relax out on the water. Maybe they could do some fishing, or maybe just curl up next to one another in the shade of the sail. Or maybe-
But none of this would happen. Hannibal was not his mate, and Will was forgetting his place.
"That sounds like a great idea." Will snapped back to attention as Hannibal stood from his chair, collecting the tupperware and putting them back into his cooler. Will tried to force himself to retract his statement, but the image of him and Hannibal content on the boat stuck deeply in his mind. He watched frozen as Hannibal finished packing and retrieved his coat.
"I hope to see you on Monday, Will. The weekend will feel too long."
Will couldn't help but smile. He stood up and followed Hannibal to his office door, taking in his smell one last time.
"Yes, I'll see you on Monday- oh wait no I won't. This weekend is the beginning of Spring Break."
"Well, then maybe you can send me a text, and we can arrange a meeting."
Will knew that wouldn't happen, but he smiled anyway at the thought.
"Maybe. Please have a safe drive, Hannibal."
It wasn't until Hannibal was gone when Will noticed the alpha's scarf resting on the guest chair. Hannibal must have been leaning against it, for when Will brought it against his nose it was still warm. Without thinking, Will loosely wrapped the black scarf around his neck, purring as he soaked in the heat left behind.
Will was finishing the final touches of the meal when his mate walked through the door.
"You're early." Will said, and soon found himself in the arms of his alpha.
"William! I have great news." The other exclaimed, picking Will up and twirling him around. Will gritted his teeth in pain as his left arm was crushed between them. When he was finally set back down, his mate thrust some keys in Will's face, causing him to flinch.
"What, what is that?" Will asked.
"Keys to the cabin I rented out in Wolf Trap," His alpha explained, grinning ear to ear. "We'll be going there for the whole Spring Break."
Will smiled along with his mate, telling him what a brilliant idea it was, but inside he was screaming. A week. A full week stuck in a cabin far from civilization with his mate. If it were anyone else, Will would have been thrilled. He loved the outdoors, loved fishing, loved hiking, loved it all, but to spend it with his mate...
"When do we go?" He asked, hoping he had some time before he was thrust into the situation.
"Tomorrow morning! Pack your bags and bring only what is necessary."
Which means no books. Will thought bitterly as he watched his mate bound up the stairs to start packing. Will plopped down in a chair, running a hand over his face. He picked his phone up, going through his contacts until he reached "HL". He had never called Hannibal, not once since he was given his number. He knew the alpha had his number, but seemed to want Will to bridge the gap when he was ready. Will was temped to call, to text, to do anything since he'd grown closer to him, but each time he exited his contacts and thrust the phone back into his pocket.
Now, now he wanted nothing more than to let the older man know what was going on. Give him a heads up perhaps. Maybe "if I don't contact you by Monday call the cops" sort of thing. Will hovered over the "txt" option, staring intently at the screen before sighing in frustration and putting the phone back in his pocket.
The cabin was beautiful. The siding was a perfect shade of brown with no signs of the paint chipping or curling. The yard was clear of snow, but the outskirts where the trees line started held lumps of snow, the right kind if he wanted to make a snow man or make a snowball.
But he wouldn't dare do that, wouldn't dare throw a snowball at his mate.
Maybe at Hannibal. Will reasoned. Hannibal might get offended, but he would get get revenge in some creative way. Perhaps he would grab him and tickle him? Or maybe he would throw a snowball back? No, that was too childish. But maybe he would, if he loved him?
Will was brought out of his musing when he heard his mate walk up behind him.
"Isn't this wonderful?" he asked, slipping an arm around Will's waist. "Big cabin, surrounded by trees, and far from civilization. Could you ask for a better place to be?"
"It's wonderful," Will agreed, forcing himself to snuggle closer to his mate. "I bet the stars are beautiful out here."
"Hm." His mate agreed, resting against Will, who had to force himself not to shake. He was released after a while, his mate smiling. "Come on, lets unpack."
The first few days went without hitch. His mate would help Will make breakfast in the morning, and they would slip into a routine they held on weekends. They would sit next to each other on the couch and watch the news, with Will massaging his mate's shoulders, or arms, or feet. Will didn't mind, but it was difficult with only one hand available. His mate didn't complain, so Will continued.
However, Will caught his mind wandering as he massaged his mate's hands, imagining Hannibal's strong manicured hands instead of his mate's rough, thuggish ones.
Will tried to banish the thought, knowing it would get him into trouble if his mate caught him thinking about another alpha, but the thoughts stayed throughout the day. It became worse at night when his mate curled around him, gripping him tightly in his sleep. In Will's dreams, it was Hannibal's arms holding him, keeping him warm and safe from the outside world, filling his mind with his scent. His hopes of waking next to Hannibal became diminished each time he woke to find his mate next to him. He hoped that he kept this secret hidden down far enough not to rouse suspicion, to bring forth his mate's ire.
It was Tuesday, four days since they had been at the cabin when the routine chaged. His mate was not there when he woke, which was strange. He never got up before Will, choosing to sleep in until he was unable to. Stepping from the bed, Will walked out of the room and down to the kitchen.
The kitchen was empty too, but the coffee machine was still on and there were dirty dishes in the sink. Will turned the coffee machine off and started washing dishes, wondering where his mate could have gone. While the cabin was big, he wouldn't think of any other room he could be in. Will peeked outside, watching as the sun glinted off the snow packs when he saw the car was missing.
Must have gone into town, Will thought, but an uneasy thought began to form. They didn't need anything from town. They had everything they could need here for weeks. Maybe he was feeling too cooped up? Maybe he just needed a change. But Will still felt uneasy, and he left the kitchen for shelter of the living room.
There, sitting innocently in the middle of the couch, was Hannibal's scarf.
Will gave a start, staring at the neatly folded cloth, wondering why it was there. He didn't bring it home, he was certain of that. He had left it at his office for Hannibal to pick up the next time he came back.
No, no he did put it on, didn't he? Put it around his neck just to feel close to Hannibal, but he took it off, he was sure he did.
But that didn't help him now, did it? The scarf was evidence that Will must have brought it home with him, and accidentally packed it with his other things. It would explain why he couldn't get Hannibal out of his head and smelling him everywhere. However, if the scarf was here, then his mate must know of it.
The blood drained from Will's face, his mind finally catching up with the meaning of the scarf being out of his bag. His alpha had found the scarf, probably sniffed it out, and was furious that Will had something that belonged to a strange alpha.
Will sat down on the couch, dread sneaking upon him. He was trapped in a cabin far from civilization with a furious alpha mate with the only form of transportation with no idea when he was coming back.
Will clutched at the scarf, trying to soak in the remains of Hannibal's scent, but it didn't calm him like it used to for mixed in with Hannibal's scent was the toxic smell of his mate.
His mate didn't return for lunch. Will reheated yesterday's dinner and picked at it, but his stomach was too upset. His mind was in a whirlwind over where his alpha could be.
Will thought about leaving, thought about running off into the forest and hiding before his mate returned. He knew how to survive the wilderness, knew how to fend for himself, despite what others might think. He entertained the idea, but he knew he wouldn't do it. His arm was still useless, and besides, he could never really escape. His mate would sniff him out, send missing person posters around the state. He would find Will, and Will wouldn't like what happened after they were alone together.
As he sat in the living room he picked up his phone, checking to see if his mate called or texted him, but there were no missed messages. He tapped his fingers over the screen before opening the contacts. He didn't have his mate on speed dial or memorized like a good omega should. He was about to call his mate when he caught sight of the name just below his mate's name.
Will bet Hannibal would know what to do. He would tell him to run away, or tell him where the cabin was located so he could come and pick him up. Hannibal would keep him safe; he would never hurt him. Will was sure of it. They were compatible. Hannibal was constantly telling him they were meant to be together, whether he said it out right or not. Will had barely known the alpha for three weeks and he felt safer and content around him than his own mate. It spoke volumes, and Will wished he had known about compatibility before he fell into what was called his life. Perhaps if he had waited, if his parents hadn't pushed him, he could have met Hannibal under different circumstances. He would be unmated and their bond would be perfect. Now if Will wanted to be with Hannibal it wouldn't be as strong. He was a used omega, completely useless to any other alpha.
But, Hannibal didn't think any less of him. He sought him out, not the other way around. Perhaps... perhaps Will had a chance. There were methods to leaving one's mate, but usually it was the alpha who did the leaving. It was easier for them to leave a pact than for an omega, having more rights. It could be done, but it was a longer process which more often than not ended up failing. Usually only death could successfully unbind an omega from their alpha.
Will shook his head at the idea. His alpha? Dying? Of the two it was Will the more probable to be killed at the hands of his mate.
Will needed to banish these thoughts. They would do him no good, for he had other things to worry about, like how his mate still had not returned.
It was dark outside when Will saw the flash of headlights dash across the kitchen wall. He stayed in his spot at the table, clutching at Hannibal's scarf as the engine stopped and the car door opened and closed. Will remained still as the house door swung open, refusing the urge to get up and meet his mate at the door. Footsteps grew closer and closer, his mate finding him immediately. He stood at the opposite side of the table, his hands in his pockets. Will continued to look down at his lap, the scarf twined around his hand.
"I was going to let it go, William," his mate began, his body language casual and relaxed. Will wasn't buying it. "We both know you're mine, so I didn't do anything when you started to reek like that doctor. But I guess this is what happens when I don't put you in your place."
Will knew better, but he still said, "We're just friends."
His mate walked around the table and stood behind Will. He placed his hands on his shoulders, and Will flinched. "I know you wouldn't disobey me, little omega. I have you trained, but this is as far as it goes. You will stop seeing the doctor. I don't care if you have to lie, but it will stop."
Will flinched as his mate's hand came up and caressed his head, fingers sliding through his curls. Still, he spoke.
"Why now?" He asked, his voice small. "Why now have a problem with this?"
His mate was silent before he reached down and pulled at the scarf in his hands "Because you brought his filth into my house willingly."
Will clenched his hand, refusing to release Hannibal's scarf, and he knew he had done the wrong thing. His mate's hand clenched in his hair and yanked him out of his chair, throwing him to the ground. Will gasped as he made contact, his left arm screaming in protest as it was jerked around in its sling. A swift kick met his hip, and he cried out.
"I will not have another alpha's stench in my house." his mate growled, kicking again. Will whimpered, but something began to possess him. Just as his mate was about to make another assault, Will grabbed onto his leg, making the alpha lose his balance. They were too close to the table, and the sickening sound of his mate's head hitting the table made Will immediately let go.
The omega scrambled to his feet and put distance between them, staring down in horror at his mate, the man yelling in pain. What was he going to do? This was the first time Will ever tried to fight back, and now as he looked down at the writhing form he felt... powerful.
His mate recovered quickly, staggering to his feet with his hand against his face, blood pouring out of his nose. When his eyes met Will's they were murderous. Will gasped and backed up against the kitchen counter, but it was no use. His mate was soon upon him, his hands wrapping around Will's throat.
"You little bitch! After everything I've done for you, you go and pull this shit." The hands tightened, and Will couldn't cry out. "When I'm done with you that doctor won't ever want to be near you again."
Will tried to gasp, tried to pry the hands off his throat. When it proved to be useless, he reached out blindly behind him, trying to find a weapon. His vision began to darken and he could feel the tears streaming down his face.
There was something small and cold on the counter, and Will didn't waste any time and thrust the object at his mate.
Will felt his alpha stiffen. He made a strange, croaking noise before his hands left Will's throat and he was suddenly gone. Will keeled over and coughed, gripping the counter so he wouldn't fall to the ground. He blinked his eyes uselessly, trying to regain his sight, but there was little he could do except wait.
With the blood rushing through his ears, Will almost didn't hear his mate's gasping or the sudden thud. He blinked in the direction of the noise, and he could barely make out his mate's body on the floor. He froze.
There was so much blood. It pooled around the kitchen floor surrounding his mate's prone body. Will remained where he was, gripping the counter until he realized his hand was wet. Looking down, he saw there was blood splattered along his right arm. Gasping, Will looked back at his mate, and he saw the source of the blood was coming from his neck. Looking down his body, Will was able to locate the knife in his mate's hands. He must have pulled it out, but Will knew he would have had a higher chance of surviving if he had kept the blade in the wound.
Realization hit him at full force, making him understand the trouble he was in. He just killed his mate. He knew the law better than most, and knew he could plead self defense, but he doubted he would get away with anything. It was a crime for an omega to kill his alpha, even if it was in self defense. No matter what Will did knew he would be put away.
He crumbled to the floor, blood soaking into his jeans. He didn't want to go to jail. He was finally free. He just wanted to be free. Hysteria began to bubble up inside him and he started to sob. He just wanted to be free and safe. He wanted a mate to love him, cherish him, and protect him. Was that too much to ask?
Will stopped crying. He looked around the floor before spotting the scarf. Hannibal's scarf.
Hannibal would be good to him. He would protect and love him. He would never beat him or ridicule him. Hannibal was perfect.
Will stood on shaky legs and picked up the scarf, cradling it to his chest. Then he reached for his phone which had been sitting on the table. Before he could really think about what he was doing, Will clicked on "HL" and hit send. It only took two rings before Hannibal answered.
"Hello?" At the sound of the alpha's voice, Will felt at ease. His body, however, refused to stop shivering.
"Hey," Will managed to greet. "It's me."
"Will? Will what's wrong?"
Will bit his lip before he fell to tears once more, blabbering about what happened.
"And... And... He's dead. Hannibal I-I don't know what-" He cut himself off, his chest hurting. Hannibal hushed him, soothing him and speaking gently. When Will was able to gain some control over his breathing, Hannibal asked, "Where are you?"
Will gave him the address and had to bite his lip so he would start crying again.
"I don't know what to do."
"Shh, it's alright, William. Everything will be fine," Hannibal assured. "Just leave it to me. Have you informed the police?"
"No," Will whimpered.
"It would be wise not to call them. Remain where you are, Will, I'll be right there." The line went dead, and Will had no chose other than to sit in the kitchen and wait.
The first thing Hannibal did when he arrived was pull Will into an embrace. Will tried to protest, not wanting blood to get over his clothes, but Hannibal was persistent. With Hannibal's scent consuming his senses, Will relaxed completely in the alpha's arms and allowed himself to be guided out of the house and into the car.
"Stay in the car, Will. I'll take care of everything."
Will didn't respond; his throat hurt too much. Hannibal trailed a hand along his neck, his eyes hardening at the bruising on the tender flesh. He leaned in and nuzzled Will's neck, making the omega jump at the unexpected touch. Will soon relaxed when realized what the alpha was doing.
"I'm yours now, aren't I?" He whispered, eyes fluttering shut. Hannibal didn't answer, but the lips at the hallow of his throat was enough. Will let out a shakey breath, a small purr catching in his chest. Will felt Hannibal smile and he kissed his neck again before leaning back.
"I'll be right back. Stay in the car."
After adjusting the seat Hannibal left Will to sit in the warm vehicle. There was soft classical music playing through the speakers, and Will found himself nodding off.
He watched as Hannibal went in and out of the house, bringing in a bag from the trunk on the second round. Each time the alpha went to the car he would check on Will, peering in the window to see how he was faring. Will tried to give a small smile each time, but he ended up just sleepily blinking up at him. In any case, Hannibal didn't look too concerned as he went back inside the house. It was on his final round Will noticed something off about the other man. He wasn't wearing his usual attire, which admittedly would be silly to wear this late at night. Hannibal wore an entirely black outfit which was then covered in a plastic hazard suit. It was as if Hannibal had done this before...
That would be silly. Why would Hannibal, of all people, have done this before? He didn't have enemies; no one would dare go against the powerful alpha. He was perfect in all shape and form.
But if he had done this before, then why? It appeared Hannibal was an expert at handling this kind of situation, and the more Will thought about it he found himself not caring. His mind revolved around Hannibal, constantly whispering "he cares about you, he would never hurt you. Even if he's a killer, he'll always protect you". Will wasn't sure if he should trust the little voice, but as he watched Hannibal leave the house with a large black bag over his shoulder, Will found himself falling deeper in love with the alpha.
Will listened to Hannibal as he closed the trunk with his old mate inside, and he could not help but smile. Finally, he thought, I'm safe.
Will closed his eyes, comforted by the smell of Hannibal and allowed himself to be lulled to sleep.