Will let out a heavy and shaking breath as he was lead back down the halls of the Baltimore State Hospital for the Criminally Insane. It had been a long time since he'd been here. Not since his encounter with the Tooth Fairy. He'd never had any intention of coming back, had never even entertained the thought. He had simply wished to return to his normal life with Will and Molly once the whole ordeal had been settled. But Will Graham began to realize that in his life, no ordeal was ever settled.
That was why when he had received a letter from the FBI that had been forwarded from Dr. Hannibal Lecter, he had flown out to Baltimore on the Red Eye. He knew that Lecter was none of his concern now, that he should have long since buried the hatchet, but once more, this ordeal was not settled, nor did Will ever think it would be. A part of him wished that he had ignored the letter, like he did all the Christmas cards Hannibal sent him every year, but this time, he couldn't.
The letter had been brief, simply instructing him to come to the hospital and not to worry, he had already informed Dr. Chilton that he would be arriving. Upon the thought of that man, Will couldn't help but to grimace and even now as he was walking into the man's office, it didn't fall from his face.
Upon seeing him, Chilton's eyes seemed to come to life, and a fake smile slid across his face. "Mr. Graham! So good to see you again!"
Will smiled tightly, but did not politely offer his hand. He felt if he touched the man, he would simply slide right off of him. This man was but a shell of a psychiatrist, collecting the criminally insane like trophies that he could spit on and shine up for those who wished to view them. Will would know. He was once one of them.
"Likewise, Dr. Chilton." Will responded.
"I must admit, Mr. Graham, had Hannibal not informed me that you would be arriving, I would have hardly recognized you."
Will remained tight lipped at that comment. It was extremely rare that anyone would mention his facial scarring, simply out of the fact that they wished to be polite by ignoring, but apparently, not Chilton. Will straightened his tie, turning to face the door.
"If you wouldn't mind, Doctor, I would really rather we get this over with."
"Of course! Of course!" Chilton said, scurrying past him and moving to walk him down those familiar steps.
With each movement, shadows of the past would fill Will's subconscious, moving him through his visits with Lecter from the Tooth Fairy case to his own stay here, when he had been framed for Hannibal's murders.
"I would let you go down yourself, since you know the way," Chilton laughed, "But alas, protocols."
"I understand." Will said blandly.
"Interestingly enough, your not the only FBI agent who has been visiting Lecter lately.:
"Ex FBI agent." Will corrected.
Chilton ignored him and continued, "A young Ms. Clarice Starling. Though I must admit, she's too pretty to be an agent. Here to consult with Hannibal about the Buffalo Bill case."
Chilton continued talking, not seeming to notice nor care that Will wasn't listening. By the time they had reached the bottom step, Will had already moved past Chilton and the orderly, Barney, was opening up the gate for him. He was about to speak, but Will simply turned to look at him and said,
"I know the protocol."
With that, he stepped through, walking down the middle of the hallway. The place was filthy, obviously not well kept, though that wasn't surprising when he thought about the fact that Chilton ran this place. It reeked of urine and Will was forcing himself to hold his breath and only breathe when entirely necessary. He walked slowly, ignoring the comments made from the other inmates in the hall. He remembered them all, especially the extremely crude Miggs. As he approached the last cell on the left, his speed fell and he walked slower, wanting to drag out the moment before he arrived, but it was only two more steps away. When he peered into the cell, Hannibal was lying on his cot, staring up at the ceiling.
"Hello, Will. I trust Dr. Chilton was polite when you came in," were the first words Hannibal spoke to him.
"As polite as Dr. Chilton can be," he responded.
He chuckled, "He does have that way about him, doesn't he, Will?"
Will simply nodded and grabbed the chair that was leaning against the wall, positioning it so that he was facing Hannibal's cell. He didn't say anything as he watched Hannibal rise up from the cot, stretching his body. For a man who had not been in the outside world for so long, it was odd to see him so fit and still looking like he did in the days when he was Will's psychiatrist. Hannibal turned to face Will, and he smiled softly.
"I was hoping you wouldn't be too ugly."
Will scoffed slightly. "It was no thanks to you."
"I did not dictate Dolarhyde's actions."
"No, you simply coerced them."
"Let us not speak of the past, dear Will. Let's focus now on the present."
"And what is it exactly that you wish for us to focus on, Dr. Lecter? Please enlighten me," he said, his agitation leaking through.
"Don't be rude, Will," Hannibal warned, "You are aware of how much I dislike that."
Will let out a heavy sigh and he ran a hand over his face. He felt his hand begin to shake. He ignored it, closing his eyes as he tried to focus again. His breathing became heavier. He was losing himself. This hadn't happened to him since before he had been incarcerated.
"It's 7:19 PM," Hannibal started, using the old technique to ground him. "You are in Baltimore State Hospital for the Criminally Insane and your name is Will Graham."
"I know who I am!" Will shouted suddenly, standing up. "I've known who I am all along. It was you who made me believe that I was something I wasn't. You who made me believe that I killed all those people...That I was capable of killing them, of killing Abigail..."
"Ah, yes, Abigail," Hannibal said, ignoring most of Will's rant. "I've sent her letters, but she never responds to them. How is she, Will?"
"Tell me why I'm here, Dr. Lecter." Will spoke, "Or I will turn around and leave here and you will never see me here again."
"You may leave here if you please, William. However, it would be wise of you to never be the fool. I will see you again."
Will stood tall, straightening out his suit as he locked eyes with Hannibal. He had been one of the only people he had ever been able to look straight in the eye. Even with Molly and Will it had been difficult. He had never been able to do it with Jack and only rarely with Alana.
"Goodbye, Dr. Lecter. I trust that we will not meet again."
Will turned to walk away and as he did, Hannibal spoke up, "Oh Will, I would like you to do a favour for me."
He paused momentarily, before turning back to face him, "And what would that be, Dr. Lecter?"
Hannibal smiled and Will could see all of his small white teeth and his maroon eyes flashed dangerously, "Do put some flowers on Freddie Lounds' grave for me? I truly was such an avid fan of her work."
With those final words, Will Graham stormed out of the Baltimore State Hospital for the Criminally Insane.