Hannibal had left to go and take Abigail to her college interviews, leaving Will to brood in his office at the station about his encounter with his father.
Memories of the bitter cold of winter chilled his bones and he shivered as the image of him crouched over a dead deer flashed in front of him, his mouth tasted of copper as he felt furious hands drag him back, yelling in his ears.
“What the fuck did you do!? Will! Will!”
Will was startled awake by Beverly poking his head with her pen, “Will, wake up sleeping beauty,” she teased, “I’m tired too, but the sooner we can pull this off the sooner we can go home.”
“Don’t worry about it, Jack’s got us all working overtime on the ripper, want a coffee?”
“Caffeine makes me more tired.”
“What time is it?”
Beverly checked her watch, “3am, so it’s not technically day drinking just yet.”
“Alright... just this once though, I don’t need Hannibal bursting a blood vessel if he hears I’ve been drinking this early.”
“You got it.”
Beverly put her files in front of Will before sauntering off to get a drink. He picked up the papers and shuffled through them, trying to figure out what the ripper was trying to tell them. A pendulum swung behind his eyes as he was back at the murder scene.
Beverly put the glass of whiskey down in front of Will, snapping him back to reality.
“So, rippers message... any ideas?”
Will rubbed his eyes and nodded, taking a sip of the whiskey, “he’s taunting Jack, dangling information in front of him.”
“Nothing, wanna head into town with me and a few others?”
“Depends on who the others are.”
“You, me, Abigail, and a friend I made at pottery class. It’ll be a girls night!” Beverly physically recoiled and looked at Will, growing pale at what she said, “I mean, I’m not-”
Will giggled and shook his head, “I like it being called girls night, don’t worry.” He paused slightly before admitting, “I just say I’m a guy cause people understand it more than my actual...”
“Yeah, like I’m not a man or a woman... I guess.”
“So, not a guy, not a girl... non binary then?”
“It’s like... when you’re not either, or you can be both, I know a person at my pottery class that’s bigender, and she uses he and she pronouns. You might be under that?”
“That makes sense... yeah, I’m... not?”
“Non binary,” Beverly corrected.
“Yeah, non binary.”
“Nice, so what sorta stuff do you like being called?”
“Uh... just a mix of the two I guess?”
Beverly grinned and nodded excitedly, “You got it girlfriend! Go get dressed up, I’ll call Margot and come pick you and Abigail up!”
Will flushed pink and nodded, picking up his leather satchel and tossing it over his shoulders as they both headed out.
Hannibal nodded proudly at Abigails painting and put his hand on her shoulder approvingly, “This is an excellent painting, you’ve improved drastically these few months.”
“Thank you dad, it’s really fun.”
“Of course,” Hannibal glanced up as Will trudged into the room, “Welcome back dear.”
“Won’t be back for long, Beverly invited Abigail and I out, she thinks I’m stressed out.”
“Ah, that sounds like it will be eventful, I’ll prepare you both something to eat upon your return, but I’m afraid that I have some patients I must attend to so it might be later than normal.”
“I’ll make sure to bring you something back.”
Hannibal smiled softly as he watched Will and Abigail hurry upstairs to get ready, carefully removing the painting from the easel, Hannibal found an intricate bronze frame to place it in.
The frame had a carving of a wolf chasing a deer all across, joining with the head of a hare in the centre.
Taking his paintbrush, he carefully applied sealant over Abigails art, making sure it will remain preserved.
Hannibal felt a twinge of happiness at the prospect of being in a committed relationship with Will, of course, there was going to be their issues, mainly with his protectiveness over Will.
He had wanted to eliminate everyone that had ever touched him when they first met, to take him under his wing and shape him into a weapon, one that would perfectly compliment him.
But after Will took Abigail in, the joys of domestic living encompassed everything he did, and there was nothing he wanted to do more was to teach Abigail everything he knew, and being called father made his chest swell with pride.
Will tousled his hair and looked at the outfit he had picked out in Hannibal’s full length mirror, he was wearing a loose fitting silk shirt that he left mostly unbuttoned at the top, with a baby blue blazer and matching bootcut trousers, he decided on wearing black heeled boots and haphazardly put on a small amount of eyeliner and lipgloss.
And then he remembered that Abigail was coming along with him, and she didn’t know about his sudden revelation in gender identity and expression.
Neither did Hannibal, his brain less than helpfully chimed in to remind him.
Will contemplated grabbing the nearest outfit he would wear to work, and then he contemplated just calling off the whole thing and letting Abigail have fun, but the door was opening, and he could see Abigail walking into the room.
“Dad, have you seen my?-” Abigail cut herself off when she looked at Wills outfit, his face going red with embarrassment as she stared, “I didn’t know you wore heels,” Abigail admitted.
“I was just... I...” Will stammered, Abigail cut him off.
“I think you look good, the eyeliner suits you.”
“Do not tell Hannibal about this.”
“Why? Is it cause it’s called girls night? I can ask Bev-”
“It’s not that, I like it being girls night. I’ve just never worn something like this before.”
“You think he might like it and want you to wear it more often but it’s super out of your comfort zone, especially around him cause you two are dating?”
“I’ll cause a distraction and you can slip out!” Abigail grinned, hurrying downstairs to talk to Hannibal, “Dad! Can you make sure this jacket fits ok?”
Will took a shaky breath before carefully making his way downstairs, making sure to step on the balls of his feet so his heels didn’t click off the ground, alerting Hannibal.
Abigail was still chatting away until he opened the door, making Hannibal perk up.
“I hope that’s not you trying to sneak off without giving a kiss goodbye Will.”
Hannibal headed over towards Will as he freaked out internally and tried to find a way to hide, he ended up deciding on screwing his eyes shut and refusing to look at Hannibal while his brain rattled off one word as if it were the only one he knew.
He suddenly felt hands at his waist, gently rubbing circles in his hips as Hannibal pulled him in closer.
The hairs on the back of Wills neck stood up as he felt hot breath near his ear and Hannibal whispered.
“Enjoy your night out dear.”