quarrels with honey

Hannictober 01: Pumpkin Spice

A little bit late but! I really wanted to get in on this and do at least one prompted fic. Post-finale, Will decides to surprise Hannibal two years after the fall with a date. I present to you: A Trace of Honey!

“You continue to defy my expectations, Joshua. I hadn’t thought you meant this.”

       Hannibal emphasizes the use of Will’s alias with eye contact, eyes unreadable. Not for lack of emotion, but the sheer overwhelming amount. Will doesn’t care to dig deep into his empathy to figure out Hannibal’s inner workings. The inevitability of Hannibal’s opinion, good or bad, would be smothering if Will didn’t secretly enjoy listening to Hannibal’s petty gripes or, even more so, his praise.

       He quirks his eyebrow at Hannibal as they wait at the bar, fingers ghosting along the glass of the display case. He pays hardly any mind to the various delicacies and baked goods contained within. “I thought you knew I meant a coffee date, Lucian.”

       Finding a cafe that fitted Will’s desires had been a grueling journey, one that required months of scoping out both literal locations and reviews, but Ichor is worth it. Despite the pretentious title, though even that had been a plus when he considered how Hannibal might appreciate it, it is not so high-brow as to warrant any suspicion—after all, Will Graham is not Bedelia du Maurier, and he’ll be damned if two years of successfully being on the run is thwarted by Hannibal’s overwhelming need for the unnecessarily luxurious—but nothing like Starbucks or its kin. Not only does he have a personal distaste for such an overwhelming popularity and all the flocks it brings, but it poses a true genuine risk: though the large amount of cafe-goers may prove to be adequate cover for them, the idea that someone may accidentally include them in the backgrounds of selfies and threaten their location’s safety is one that fills him with nausea. What a horrifying concept: legendary ‘Murder Husbands’ Hannibal Lecter and Will Graham, brought down by an Instagram post. He’d rather Freddie turn up on his door with a camera and shout CHEESE!

       “Forgive me for having other expectations when you mentioned the word date.”

       Will snorts. No doubt Hannibal had envisioned chandelier-lit dinners in some five-star restauraunt, drinking wine and dining on the highest quality of food, backed by an ethereal soundtrack of piano music, the angelic hymns of some operatic singer. The idea is not repellent, but he would never turn down the chance to take the infamous Hannibal Lecter by surprise. It thrills him to know that even after two years of continuous co-existence, he is still able to.

       “Lovers’ quarrel?” suggests the barista, a honey-eyed woman whose badge reads Cynthia. Though the two of them had gone bloodless since their fall – it’s the biggest contributor to their continued peace – Will has learned to absorb every piece of information about the strangers he encounters that his empathy doesn’t provide. A tic adopted after Hannibal confessed to doing such a thing. He eyes the woman under the guise of friendliness, but nothing about her screams, or even whispers, suspicious. Either about her own nature or her perception of them. Rather, she is entirely open, enthralled by the two of them and their display of domestic banter. He envisions that she is a rather love-starved woman, over-attaching herself to each and every relationship she witnesses. It wouldn’t be fair of him to begrudge her that idealism, or that obsession, and so he doesn’t.

       “Of a sort,” Will responds with a small smile. He doesn’t look her in the eyes, but at the bridge of her nose. “It’s our anniversary.” He drops the word casually, but it’s anything but. Hannibal stiffens, undetectable by anybody but him. It’s the first time he’s dropped the a word, and he’s well aware of the implications of it.

Read the whole thing on ao3!

(since it’s too damn long)