Will stumbles upon them quite by accident, hidden in a hollowed-out book on the top-most shelf of the small library in their new house in Kamakura. He is drawn to the volume by its beautiful leather spine, and the fact that it’s three times the size a volume of The Picture of Dorian Gray ought to be. When he plucks it from the shelf and opens it up, the scent of graphite wafts up to meet him.
His own face stares back in an expression impish and seductive and uncomfortably familiar, and—
“Will,” Hannibal’s careful voice sounds behind him. Will spins around to see him by the door, and clutches the book in his hand tighter, half-afraid Hannibal might take it away.
“What is this?” he asks in a voice that shakes. He plucks the sheaf of papers out of the book and sets the empty husk of it aside. He thumbs through each page. They are all of him, all in various positions, body exposed and rapturous with arousal. His eyes trace the outline of his erection as it practically defies gravity, Will’s back arched and his face shuttered in what looks like orgasm.
Hannibal takes quiet, measured steps into the room until he’s standing beside Will. He looks down at the drawings in Will’s hands. Will can’t read his face, can’t figure out how he’s reacting to it at all. It strikes him as totally unfair, considering how transparent Will’s own reactions must be. “I apologize if this has startled you. Those were not meant for your eyes, Will.”
Will makes an incredulous sound in his throat. “I kind of figured,” he manages to say. “What were you—How did you even—” His cheeks are burning when he looks down at the drawing again, at the clear precision of the likeness.
“It wasn’t difficult to extrapolate. I’ve seen you unclothed before, as you may remember.”
Will nods. Memories of Hannibal stripping off bloody clothes, Hannibal’s hands smoothing down Will’s wet back, Hannibal scrubbing a line down his torso with a wet sponge. “Yeah. I remember.”
Hannibal smiles, then, as if this pleases him. He holds out his hand for the drawings, and Will reflexively hands them over. They go back into the book, which Hannibal shuts and places back on the shelf. Out of sight, out of mind.
“Wait,” Will says, because Hannibal has turned around and is about to walk away. He licks his lips; he wants to ask but doesn’t know if he wants to hear the answer. Would it really matter, if Hannibal has taken even more advantage of him than he’d previously thought? “Have you…seen me like that?” Without my consent? He doesn’t say the last part out loud.
Hannibal draws close again. He lifts a hand and touches fingers to Will’s cheek, stroking softly. It’s a familiar gesture, one that Will tries hard not to crave.
“No, Will,” he says softly, and the relief is heavy and prickling at the back of Will’s throat. Then Hannibal smiles and leans in, his eyes taking on a wicked light. Will feels the warmth of Hannibal’s breath on his neck, his ear. “But I’ve wanted to. I’ve imagined you in such tableaus, in dreams both asleep and waking.”
Will is incapable of speech as the realization of Hannibal’s desires stabs through him. He leans into the warmth of Hannibal’s lips, instead, until they touch, Hannibal’s mouth against his neck. It feels a little bit like he’s a dog exposing his belly to a dominant creature, and he shudders as Hannibal kisses him, hot and open-mouthed.
“Will you allow me to test the veracity of my imaginings, Will?” Hannibal asks, voice soft and suggestive and—this is what makes Will come undone—pleading.
Will turns his head so that their faces are parallel and he can meet the need in Hannibal’s eyes with his own clawing desire.
“What are you waiting for?”