Oh… Beyond particularly liked that end bit. The step forward, the unwavering eye contact, and that rather direct threat (compared to his others, at least), would have been met with at least anxiety from the person he was directing it to. Normally, people would have took that as a clear sign that they were in danger. They would have attempted to back off, or come up with some witty remark within the panic of their minds to try to save themselves.
But Beyond had known from the beginning who this person was. Or at least, what he was capable of. He took those actions - those words… he assumed them to be what he would generally call a test. Because; there was only two reasons why a murderer would talk to his victims. Only two reasons why a cannibal would play with their food. Reactions. And fun. Sometimes, there was no other way but to kill through taunting, through physiological means. To place the victim off-guard to make it easier to do whatever the objective was. Somehow, he doubted Lecter was trying that. The second reason seemed more likely in his mind, even though he didn’t want to make assumptions as to what the cannibal’s intentions were. The second reason——….. because the murderer was intrigued. Because they had an interest other than killing you and eating you. Fun. Or perhaps something else.
Whichever the reason, Beyond knew he was walking a fine line between them.
A normal person would be anxious. Beyond’s reactions were quite the opposite. He stayed where he was, expression the same, eyes not moving away from the cannibal - as he simply frowned. Almost in thought.
❝It’s a shame you’ll never know.❞ B paused, then smiled just a little in return. ❝And I suppose I’ll find out if I made the correct choice by… introducing myself to you, later. For now..❞ He frowned, and stepped forward only a little, eyes wavering a little but now locking back on his; ❝What exactly are you trying to accomplish by attempting to intimidate me, doctor? Actions speak louder than words.. but I already know what you’re capable of. I think I’ve made it obvious that I don’t fear you, but you’re still trying..❞
It probably wasn’t the wisest action - to get closer than he already was, to the cannibal. But it was something Beyond couldn’t have helped. He had momentarily forgotten about L, now focusing on Lecter.
He was intrigued, too.
He had read the case files.. but… he wanted to know more. How Hannibal’s mind worked. And that interest… Well. Beyond knew he had to take risks to find out. The risk of his name, the risk of not being about to achieve his goal, the risk of d y i n g. Though.. B was well acquainted with death on an observation level. It was one thing he was not afraid of. Although he would be disappointed. As for the possibility of becoming dinner… he approved of that much more than being buried. Because - well - he had issues with dirt.
❝Oh…❞ Pause. ❝As a reminder; it may be late, but there is still around a thirty five percent probability that someone will come across us, and the unconscious man with an interesting name. So please. Either kill me now… or invite me to dinner.❞
"You seem so certain of that - "
Lecter watched Beyond’s reactions, his eyes glazed, amusing himself with how engaging they truly were. The moment he believed he had analysed every aspect of Beyond’s personality, the corners and recesses of his mind, Beyond proved his assumptions to be false. And Lecter was absolutely adoring the opposition; had not had such a contradictory human being - cooked or raw, living or deceased - in quite a long while.
Although…the arrogance hidden behind Beyond’s skin was quite an annoyance. It hindered his growth. Isolated him from his ambitions - and didn’t the man appear to hold such grand ambitions? After all, if he did not, Beyond would never have approached Lecter to begin with; the risks would have been too great.
Hmmm. Perhaps, Lecter should aid this fledgling and slice the condescending edges out of his glistening blood. Wouldn’t that be fun?
"Oh no no," he said, teeth shinning, blades of sharpened canines presenting their glorious malevolence. "Intimidation has never really been an interest of mine. Think of my previous actions as…experiments, every dedicated psychologist requires an intriguing test subject, don’t you think?"
And Lecter hummed.
"Though, I’m afraid to inform you that my diagnosis is quite serious; anti-social personality disorder with hints of psychosis. If left untreated it could lead you to commit serious acts of violence…do tell me Beyond, how often do you visualise such acts? Torturing people, killing them?…
…I’m all ears.”
Only the truly insane would outwardly refuse to fear insanity itself. And Lecter wanted to rip him apart in the most gratifying of ways, listen to his answers and individually asses their inner meaning, for knowing an individual, thoroughly - completely - was to posses power over their psyche.
Power in its most intrinsic shape.
Smile dropping, Lecter’s eye lids followed, drooping in such a way that made his face appear darker, more dangerous than he previously had. “Invite you to dinner hm? Well, I suppose I could…after all, there is more than enough cuisine for two and it would be such an inconvenience to get caught after waiting so long…”
Lecter glanced back at the pig awaiting slaughter and smiled pleasantly once again. “I must admit, I haven’t had good company in years.” The sound at the end of his sentence slithered through his teeth like water rushing, crashing, breaking.
Beyond w a s learning from the man. Or at least, of the man. He had been right in his previous thought; that Lecter found him intriguing. If he hadn’t, he would have been dead by now. And the correction: think of them as experiments. Every psychologist needs an intriguing test subject.
…B didn’t like the thought of being a test subject for an infamous cannibal. Although he didn’t hate it. Rather, disliked it. But dislike wasn’t enough of a reason to back off in his eyes. Even the next statement; his diagnosis, wasn’t. It did make him feel a t i n y bit uncomfortable, but other than that, the jam-lover was simply drawn to Hannibal’s state of mind further.
He wasn’t sure if he liked the fact that the man was so adapt to studying others. Drawing conclusions from them. He was smart. Clever. That method of analysing… It vaguely reminded him of L. And also A, remarkably. And what he said…
‘Do tell me Beyond, how often do you visualise such acts? Torturing people, killing them?’
He couldn’t help the smile that appeared on his lips. Though, it was a different smile to last time. More honest. It was also different in what someone would first logically see it as a reaction to the words; in the sense that he was imagining exactly that. But no. The smile was a reaction to Hannibal. Not only because he was (moderately) right, but also because of the sheer analytical perspective.
Beyond admired intelligence.
❝Killing rates fairly low in my mind, doctor. So does torturing. If you wish to know what I visualise on a day-to-day bases, you may want to take a different approach…❞
Yes. Beyond visualized murder. But what mattered was the intent. He didn’t j u s t visualise the murder itself. Or the events leading up to it. He visualized the entirety of it. There was a reason he did his experiments. He was learning from them. In preparation for the plan. …What he visualized on a day to day bases didn’t occur with the simplicity of a murder. Or torturing, as Hannibal had said. It was his ambition. What he visualized was the act of achieving his goal; his life-long dream…
But for Hannibal to know exactly what that consisted of, he would have to pick at his past. His ambitions. His childhood and the events at Wammys. His mentor. And… Why exactly would Beyond give that information out?
His attention back on him, he couldn’t help but tilt his head a little. He liked studying the man. His actions. Almost as much as he had done L.
His eyes briefly flickered up to the death date.
❝I’m curious. What do you visualise, doctor?❞
Pause. His eyes dropped back to him.
❝And why exactly do you class my company as good company?❞