Come Dine With Me

Love Letter from Lecter

I stared into the flames as I absently caressed the paper etched with Hannibal’s words.

Dear Will, we have all found a new life, but our old lives hover in the shadows. Soon enough I fear Jack Crawford will come knocking. I would encourage you, as a friend, not to step back through the door he holds open. It's dark on the other side, and madness is waiting.

- Hannibal

I closed my eyes and welcomed the veil. It had been some time since I had invited its lure. With each passing day, waking up next to Molly, I found it more and more difficult to visit our mind palace, the wrench I felt as I pulled myself back from his presence, tearing another piece of my heart and mind to be left for him to feast upon. I wasn’t sure how much more of myself was left to give. But each piece left with him, had been replaced by the presence of Molly. She had become to me, as Florence was to Hannibal. She made me human.

But now, reading Hannibal’s words, I heard his soft timbre invade and vibrate within me again, whispering sweet everythings of what we had, what we were. I wondered now, at this newly-born monster manifesting between us, pulling us both inexorably back into each other’s gravities. It was only a matter of time before our paths would converge once more, to wreck havoc upon the world.

I opened my eyes to watch as he expertly carved a slice of meat from the leg of lamb between us. His dining room had never changed.

“You want me to come, but cannot bring yourself to write the words…," I said.

He spoke as he continued to carve. “I do not wish you to come. Though Jack Crawford may believe you can save lives, I am and shall always be more concerned with yours.”

He sat before lifting his wine glass and raising it towards me with a smile. “I fear were I to see you in the flesh again, I might become powerless in the face of the desires you evoke within me.” He sipped and placed the glass down again. “And I have become so very adept at managing my needs. It would be shame to spoil my achievements for the sake of a few families.”

“And if I need to see you?”

Hannibal swallowed his forkful of lamb before replying. “Then I am powerless to stop you. But you cannot say I did not warn you and try to protect us from each other.”

He continued, his gaze one of admiration and want. Though that was more likely my own reflection in his eyes. “Jack Crawford will conduct, I will play and you, dear Will, will be the instrument to sing our deadly composition. Are you ready for that?”

I pulled back to myself and the flames before me. I looked again at the page. Held it close to my face. The scent, unmistakably him, intoxicating and flooding my mind with our former liaisons, fresh and keen as the day he had devoured me whole. I threw it on the fire and leaned back.

The words screamed softly. Not with warning to stay away.

It was an invitation. One which Hannibal understood completely I would be unable to resist.

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