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Every step of the way

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Hannibal's voice sounded  more nervous.

- "Will !! Please get out of there. You will burn !!! The steam is going to kill you !! Get out !!! Get out now !!"

The young man was crying. He couldn't save her.He took her hand while the lady cried and screamed for he to help her. 

-"I am sorry ..I am so sorry!.."

He got up just secinse before a column of steam burned the poor woman to a crisp. Desperate, heartbreaking screams filled the space. Will ran to the exit. Steam poured out of the gap, engulfing Will just as he crossed it. All officers recoiled from the intense heat.

The screaming stopped and seconds later the steam stopped coming out  . The clouds were fading and the temperature was dropping. Will was devastated. He was crying  helplessly. Jack lowered his head and rubbed the arch of his nose with his fingers.

Will began to remove his suit after handing the bag of evidence to a coroner. He threw the suit on the ground. The doctor's soft, worried voice was the last thing he heard before he threw the goggles to the floor.

- "Will .. you did everything you could .."

Jack approached Will to try to calm him down, but Beverly stopped him  with a hand on his forearm and a negative shake of her head. Will walked as fast as he could from the scene. 

Hannibal closed the laptop on his lap. He looked at the ceiling and sighed. An incoming call to his cell phone pulled him from his thoughts.

-"Jack." 
- " Did you see everything? .."

 - "Yes .. You can come, but I ask you to let Will rest for a few hours. This experience was very hard on his psyche. When he is better he will look for you." 
- "Frankly, I hope he looks for you .. If he looks for me it will be to quit the case .." 
- "What Will has, Jack. It is a gift. The gift of empathy. Amplified by mirror neurons in his brain. Which makes what he experiences in the dark space he enters to shake his perception. Feeling what the killer and victim feel can be very disturbing. Be patient with him, Jack. " 
- "Patience? Have patience? I have been patient since he graduated from the academy..and now he  almost break at a crime scene ..!
- "If you press him, you will lose him, Jack. Let me help good Will. I think I can help him see the face of this murderer, without having him see the abyss by himself ..."


Hours later, when Jack had spent half an hour in Hannibal's apartment analyzing the evidence and DNA results of the victims, Will entered visibly exhausted and greeted them still visibly upset.

- "Will .."

Hannibal said compelling in one word compassion and concern. Will smiled sadly. Jack interrupted their quiet  conversation.

- "Are you okay? .. Tell me you can kept working .."

Hannibal closed his eyes at the agent's lack of tact and looked closely at Will, who answered lamely . As if he wanted to convince himself.

- "I'm fine .. I can .."

He sat down in the chair next to the bed. They reviewed the evidence.

There was another piece of paper with the mark of the red dragon. A handful of soil that was being analyzed by forensics, but  according to preliminary results had high concentrations of limestone and was native to an area on the outskirts of the city. Drops of blood on the generic paper on which it had been spilled the soil which belonged a pig's blood. And one nail that was next to the rest, and still had blood on one edge, belonged to a child's index finger. It had been plucked and also three rat hairs in the middle of the soil.

Will got up and went to the floor to ceiling window. He looked at the city lights. New York looked beautiful at night, but dangers lurked in the shadows. Dark corners where monsters crawled waiting to attack the next victim. Will closed his eyes and the pendulum began to move.

A child hung from his arms by chains. Drops of blood fell to the dirty floor. Hooks hung from the ceiling. The stench of old blood permeated the air.Some rats were beginning to come out of the shadows at the smell of blood. After a few minutes a crowd of rodents began to surround the little one in the darkness of the place. The boy freaked out and raised his feet as high as he could off the ground and screamed.

Will opened his eyes and gasped softly.

- "Ah! .."

He turned around and looked at Jack with fear in his eyes.

- "He is in a place where they used to butchered pigs! .. The place is in disuse. Kid is bleeding .. there are rats."

Jack pulled out his cell phone and started walking to the door without saying goodbye, shouting orders to Beverly about abandoned slaughterhouses on the outskirts of the city.