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Word crawl/Hannibal Crawl

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This word crawl is based very closely on season 1 of NBC's Hannibal (so, spoiler warning if you haven't seen it). This is a pretty long crawl that would be good to spread out over a couple/few days (or do it all in one if you're feeling ambitious!).

Some tasks will only be required for one of the characters. There will be a note for these special sections next to the section heading. If there's no note, both characters will do tasks in the section.

(Notes: 1) The quotes included throughout are taken directly from the show, so they are their property, not mine. But the rest of the text is mine. XD, 2) The 1st song is from the pilot episode, 3) The other 2 songs I have included were inspired by the show & written by fans.)

On to the crawl!

CHOOSE YOUR CHARACTER via a 2-sided die roll [1] (keep this link handy for future rolls).

Rolled a 1?: You are Dr. Hannibal Lecter

Rolled a 2?: You are Will Graham

Sprint to the song[2] as you ready yourself for the events to come.


Will Graham: You are approached by Jack Crawford in your classroom, and the FBI agent is desperate to borrow your imagination in order to help solve a particular set of murders that have taken place in Minnesota. Write 300 words while you wrap your head around the fact that you will have to, unfortunately, be sociable in order to be of any use to the FBI.

Dr. Hannibal Lecter: You are approached by Jack Crawford as you usher a particularly weepy patient out of your office. You are slightly put off by the FBI agent’s boldness but are also intrigued by his offer to work on a psychological profile. Write 300 words as you consider his request.


Jack has brought both Will and Hannibal into his office where they meet for the very first time. As Hannibal homes in on Will’s aversion to eye contact, Will explains that eyes are distracting, revealing way too much or too little. Sprint for 5 minutes without looking at the screen.

Will: You are annoyed by Dr. Lecter’s unapologetic analysis of you. Irritated at this man you have just met and angry at Jack for letting it happen, you cut the meeting short, telling them not to psychoanalyze you.

Hannibal: You are intrigued by the true empath in front of you, more amused than offended by his rudeness and sardonic comments.

Write 150 words as you think about the interesting or irritating man you have just met.


While both men are working on the case, Hannibal swings by Will’s motel room early in the morning. Will is annoyed, as usual, but Hannibal comes bearing a hearty breakfast he has, of course, prepared himself. Will tells Hannibal to keep their relationship strictly professional.

Hannibal counters with, “Or we can socialize like adults. God forbid we become friendly.”

Will: “I don’t find you that interesting.”

Hannibal: “You will.”

Hannibal proceeds to tell Will that Jack envisions him as a fragile teacup he is afraid to shatter.

Will: “How do you see me?”

Hannibal: “The mongoose I want under the house as the snakes slither by.”

Will: You are uncertain about the doctor’s meaning, but at least he doesn’t view you as a delicate piece of fine China. As you embrace your ferocious inner mongoose, Roll a 6-sided die & multiply by 100 – write that many words.

Hannibal: What an amazing chef you are. And how considerate of you to hand-deliver breakfast to a man who has clearly not taken a liking to you. Do a Three Digits Challenge while you lay the groundwork for your inevitable friendship.


The two of you investigate various construction sites in the area until you stumble upon one that seems promising as a lead.

Hannibal: You make a clandestine call to the suspect to warn him that the police know about him. You are simply curious to see what will happen. Sprint to the nearest thousand as you wait to find out.

Will: You and Hannibal take a trip to the suspect’s house. As you arrive, the man emerges from his house with his wife. He slits her throat with a knife and throws her to the ground before disappearing inside. You cannot save her so you go after the man. You find him in the kitchen, holding the knife to his daughter’s throat. He slits her throat as well and you unload your weapon on him. The man falls to the floor and you rush to the daughter’s side to try to save her life. Take the last 3 digits of your home address & write that amount as you attempt to stem the flow of blood spurting from the girl’s neck (if your house number is less than 3 digits, tack 0s on the end until you get 3 digits).

Hannibal takes over tending to the bleeding girl, and Will is relieved. The dying man riddled with bullet holes manages an ominous grin as he whispers, “See? See?” to an already overwhelmed Will.


After the shooting of Garrett Jacob Hobbs, Jack wants Will to receive a psych eval. from Dr. Lecter. A very reluctant Will complies, going to Hannibal’s office for his first unofficial therapy session.

Will: You are more uncomfortable than normal as you skulk around the balcony of Hannibal’s office library. Take on the Fifty-Headed Hydra as you try to put as much distance as possible between yourself and the doctor attempting to get inside your head.

If you succeed, skip a future task of your choosing.

If you fail, write another 400 words.

Hannibal: You have already signed off on Will’s evaluation, allowing the two of you to talk freely, unobstructed by paperwork. War for 10 minutes while you patiently chip away at the wall your new unofficial patient has expertly built around him.

If you win, skip a future task of your choosing.

If you lose, write another 250 words.

HOMECOMING (Will may skip this task)

Will and Hannibal visit Abigail Hobbs at the hospital. Abigail asks Will if killing somebody really feels that bad, even when you have to do it. Will tells her it is the ugliest thing in the world. Hannibal is privately intrigued by Will’s view of killing, more determined than ever to change his mind.

Hannibal: You, Will and Alana take Abigail back to her home in Minnesota in an attempt to help her heal. Nicholas Boyle – the brother of one of Garrett Jacob Hobbs’ victims – shows up, blaming Abigail for his sister’s death. He enters her house later that night and, afraid he is going to attack her, Abigail defends herself with her knife, plunging it deep into Nicholas Boyle’s abdomen. You discover what has happened and offer to help Abigail cover up the incident in order to protect her from police and public scrutiny. Later, back in Baltimore, Abigail sneaks out of the hospital to visit you in your office. She realizes that you were the one who called her father that fateful day. You claim it was an innocent call that could easily be misconstrued – just like her killing Nicholas Boyle – so you decided to keep it hidden to protect yourself. Face the Fifty-Headed Hydra while you debate whether or not she can be trusted.

If you succeed, she agrees to keep your secret.

If you don’t, write another 250 words while you give her a glimpse of your more predatory side to intimidate her into complying.

LOST TIME (Hannibal may skip this task)

Will: The stag has entered your subconscious, guiding you along the circuitous and fantastical path of your disoriented mind. You realize your first instance of lost time as you walk barefoot along the desolate streets late one night. Confused and freezing, the police offer to drive you home. You become aware of your next incident when you “awaken” on the roof of your own house, your dogs barking at you from the second story window. Even they are beginning to think you’ve gone mad. While you war with your own mind, war for 15 minutes with someone else while you climb back inside.

If you win, go on about your day.

If you lose, you are frightened about what is happening to you; write another 300 words as you force yourself to calm down.


Will goes to Hannibal’s office to discuss his recent blackouts. He muses about zipping himself into a sleeping bag before going to sleep but claims it sounds too much like a "poor man’s straightjacket." Will’s back is turned to Hannibal who stealthily sidles up behind him and leans in to get a good whiff.

Will: “Did you just smell me?”

Hannibal: “Difficult to avoid. I really must introduce you to a finer aftershave. That smells like something with a ship on the bottle.”

Will: “Well, I keep getting it for Christmas.”

Will: You are concerned about your own mental health and weirded out by your unofficial-therapist-slash-kind-of-friend. Sprint to 250 words while you refrain from saying something too sarcastic or rude.

Hannibal: You have noticed Will’s scent and, despite having been caught, you are confident in your assessment of his health. Sprint for 5 minutes as the fragrance of fevered sweetness fills the room.


Will: There have been a handful of murders at the Baltimore State Hospital for the Criminally Insane. The killings were committed by a patient, Abel Gideon, who claims that he is the Chesapeake Ripper. Do a Three Digits Challenge as you interview this man. You don’t believe for a moment that he is the Ripper; you think that someone else is trying to convince Gideon that he is the infamous killer.

Hannibal: You host a dinner for Drs. Alana Bloom and Frederick Chilton at your home. The three of you discuss the possibility of psychic driving and that Chilton may have inadvertently placed the idea into Abel Gideon’s head that he is the Chesapeake Ripper. Do a Three Digits Challenge as you pull Chilton aside in the kitchen and assure him that you are much more forgiving of the unorthodox than is Dr. Bloom.

You both know Gideon is not the Ripper. Write for 10 minutes at a leisurely pace because you really are so much more intelligent than everybody else.

A DULL ACHE (Will may skip this task)

Hannibal: You attend the opera, an event of musical frisson that manages to move you to tears. Melodic perfection is so rare these days. At the conclusion of the performance, you are approached by one of your patients, Franklin, and his friend, Tobias. In your next therapy session with the former, he expresses his desire to be your friend, saying, “It makes me sad that I have to pay to see you.” You resist the urge to roll your eyes as you deny him his desire. In a later session, his major phobia is pinpointed: his fear of being alone.

Franklin: “Being alone comes with a dull ache, doesn’t it?”

Hannibal: “It can.”

Post-session, you wait for your appointment with Will. He does not show up and you are left to consider your own state of loneliness. Sprint to the song[3] while you attempt to contain the aforementioned dull ache festering inside of you.

If you wrote 150 or more words, you ignore the feeling and leave to find Will.

If you wrote less than 150 words, write another 200 as you struggle to snuff out your own feelings. These emotions are meant for other people, not you.

PHANTOM ANIMAL (Hannibal may skip this task)

Will: You hear strange clawing and hissing noises in your chimney. Sure there is an animal trapped inside, you bust through the wall to find nothing. A short time later, Alana Bloom shows up to check on you, clearly concerned by your destruction of your own home. Swarmed with emotions, you do the thing you’ve wanted to do since you met her: you kiss Alana! She kisses you back, but then quickly analyzes the situation, making it clear that she thinks it is a bad idea to get involved romantically with you. You feel helpless to convince her otherwise. Sprint to the song[4] as she walks out the door, leaving you to your overwhelming thoughts.

If you wrote 150 or more words, you shake off the setback; you have more important things to worry than unrequited love.

If you wrote less than 150 words, write another 200 words while you lie down with your dogs in an attempt to lessen the heartbreak.


Hannibal: You have discovered that your patient’s friend, Tobias, is the killer the police have been looking for. While you appreciate the work he has done – carving open a man’s throat to “play it like a violin” – you have come to realize that this killer knows about your homicidal deeds as well. You invite him to dinner and when he confesses to wanting to be your friend, you admit to having invited him over so that you could kill him. Unfortunately, you are interrupted when the doorbell sounds. Do a Three Digits Challenge as you leave the killer in your dining room to go answer the door. An agitated Will is already in your foyer when you arrive. As the two of you make your way back through the house, you discover that Tobias has fled. You prepare dessert for Will and yourself as he tells you about his kiss with Alana Bloom and the phantom animal in his chimney. Concerned for his well-being, you toss him a lead in the case, claiming that it borders on infringing doctor-patient confidentiality. Mostly, you are just curious to see what will happen. Write 500 words in 10 minutes as you hide your true motives.

If you succeed, feel free to skip one future task of your choosing.

Will: Hannibal has given you a lead in the latest murder. You take a couple of police officers with you as you go to interview the owner of a music shop. In the middle of your discussion, you hear the frightened whimper of an injured animal. Sprint to the nearest thousand as you hurry outside to find it. There is no animal in sight so you wander back into the shop. You find the officers dead and draw your weapon. In the basement, you are attacked by the culprit, but you get a shot off before he can kill you. War for 10 minutes as the gunshot rings in your ears, momentarily deafening you. He escapes, but at least you aren’t dead.

If you win, feel free to skip one future task of your choosing.

EPIC BATTLE (Will may skip this task)

Hannibal: You are in session with Franklin when Tobias comes in. You were unsuccessful in your attempt to persuade Tobias not to kill his friend. Now, you show Franklin mercy by snapping his neck quickly, saving him a long and painful death at Tobias’ hands. Tobias is angry with you for usurping what he has claimed as his territory, and he attacks. The two of you tussle, every object in your office suddenly becoming a weapon. Write 1k in 30 minutes as you engage in an epic battle. Tobias stabs you in the leg with a letter opener and tries to bash the glass end table over your head. You catch his arm in the ladder and snap it backwards. Then, you punch him in the throat. He falls to his knees and you finish him off with the elk statue, rendering a fatal blow to the head.

If you make the goal, skip a future task because you’re such a badass.

The police and Will show up a short time later. You are surprised – and relieved – to see him alive. He commiserates about dragging you into his world but you assure him you arrived there all on your own.


Will: You are in the middle of pendulum-ing and “This is my design”-ing the totem pole crime scene when you lose time and “wake up” in Hannibal’s waiting room. You are agitated and concerned, your mind and mouth going a mile a minute as you circle Hannibal’s office, trying to figure out what is going on in your head. You are convinced it’s the result of something physiological and you tell Hannibal as much.

Hannibal: You tell Will to stop looking in the wrong corner for an answer. You insist that his mind is dissociating because of the repeated abuse it receives from enduring too much stimuli each time he takes in a new crime scene. You voice your concerns about the possibility of Will losing time and hurting himself or someone else.

As the two of you converse, roll a 6-sided die, multiply by 100 & write that many words.

REJECTION (Hannibal may skip this task)

Will: Alana approaches you in your classroom. The two of you discuss your recent kiss, but she says that she has decided she cannot be with you. She thinks you are too unstable and then asks if you feel unstable. All you can do is nod. Do *two* 15-minute wars while you attempt to mask your wounded pride.

If you win *both* wars, skip one future task. You are so resilient.


You have been working so hard. Take a break to do what you love.

Will: You enjoy an afternoon fishing and then avoiding people while you spend time with the ones who really matter to you – your dogs.

Hannibal: You flip to a business card on your rolodex, then open up your recipe box. You find your target and dispose of the rude waste of flesh and bone. You will put that meat to better use. Lose yourself in a classical aria as you glide around your kitchen, treating yourself to a beautifully prepared and perfectly cooked meal for one.

Write for a leisurely 5 minutes as your relaxing day comes to an end.


Will: You have come to a realization. Abigail Hobbs killed Nicholas Boyle. You seek out Hannibal to talk about it, yet you find out that he already knows because he helped her dispose of the body. He asks if you told Jack and you tell him, “No…because I was hoping it wasn’t true.” Write 400 words in 10 minutes as you wrap your head around the fact that two of the people closest to you have been hiding a massive and dark secret.

If you succeed, the two of you come to an understanding.

If you fail, war for 15 minutes while you consider your options.

Hannibal: When Will reveals his new-found knowledge to you, you debate your options, gingerly adjusting the scalpel on your desk. Deciding against murder for the time being, you insist that you and Will must keep this secret for Abigail. If anyone finds out, her future will be destroyed. When Will is unresponsive, you somberly ask if you need to call your lawyer. War for 10 minutes while you wait for his reply.

If you win, he says no and agrees to keep the secret.

If you fail, write 500 words while you convince Will not to reveal this information.


Will: You have been having more incidents and you tell Hannibal that you feel as though you are fading. He has you draw a clock – what the hell kind of therapy is this? – which is an easy task and the drawing looks completely normal to you. What time is it right now? Write that number of words.

If you write 600 or more words, skip a future task of your choosing.

Hannibal: Will tells you that he came to after a blackout, knelt over a dead body. He thought he had killed the girl before realizing he was analyzing a crime scene. He insists on getting a brain scan and you offer to recommend a neurologist. However, you tell him, “if it isn’t physiological then you have to accept what you’re struggling with…is mental illness.” You can see the worry in his eyes. Sprint to the nearest thousand as you try not to give away your ulterior motives.

If that total is less than 300, write another 200 words.


Will and Hannibal consult with the latter’s recommended neurologist, Dr. Sutcliffe.

Hannibal: While Will is having the scan, you inform the doctor – before the results have come in – that Will has encephalitis. You suggest that Dr. Sutcliffe view this as a rare opportunity for research. You invite the man to dinner to discuss it further. He asks if things get out of hand for Will, do they let him burn or put out the fire. Hannibal says that, of course, they will put out the fire. War for 10 minutes.

Will: After the initial scan reveals nothing physiologically wrong in your brain, you return for more tests. Afterwards, you find the room empty and get dressed. You go to Dr. Sutcliffe’s office and find him dead in his chair, his body mutilated in a similar fashion as a recent murder victim whose case you have been working on. Write 400 words.


In Hannibal’s office, Will tells him he doesn’t know how to gauge who he is anymore.

Will: “I don’t feel like myself. I feel like I have been gradually becoming different for a while. I just feel like somebody else.”

Hannibal: “What do you feel like?”

Will: “I feel crazy.”

Hannibal: “That is what you fear most.”

Will: “I fear not knowing who I am.”

Hannibal says that he is Will’s gauge to help him figure out who he is and who he isn’t. Both of you war for 5 minutes.

If you win, move on.

If you lose, war for 10 minutes.

If you win this time, move on.

If you lose, write 500 words.


Will: You and the FBI follow a clue left by the Chesapeake Ripper. You end up at the observatory. The police go inside while you notice the stag disappearing into the woods. You follow him and wind up in the back of Abel Gideon’s car. When he slides behind the wheel to make his getaway, you draw your gun and force him to drive to Hannibal’s place. You are having trouble discerning what is true and you ask Hannibal if the man you brought with you is real. He asks who you see and you tell him Garrett Jacob Hobbs – can’t he see him too? – but Hannibal tells you that there’s no one there. “Please, don’t lie to me!” you say, the words coming out desperate and nearly hysterical. But Hannibal insists you came here alone. “What’s happening to me?” you ask as you feel your senses begin to fade. Sprint to the nearest thousand as you succumb to a seizure.

If you write less than 300 words, write another 200.

Hannibal: Will’s body trembles before you and you examine him quickly, determining he has had a mild seizure. With Will’s mind elsewhere, you take the opportunity to talk to Abel Gideon who sits across the table from you. You hint at Alana Bloom’s location, knowing Gideon will want to kill her. He leaves to seek out his new target and Will comes to. You tell him you are worried about Alana and plan to check on her. He wants to come too, but you tell him you will call Jack to take him to the hospital. You exit the room, conveniently leaving your keys and his gun on the table near him. You wait until you hear the door close and then return to find him – and the keys and gun – missing. While you bask in your success, check the time and write for that many words.

If you write more than 500 words, skip a future task.

Will finds Gideon outside of Alana’s home. He ends up shooting the man and then collapsing into the snow bank.

REDIRECTING SUSPICION (Will may skip this task)

Hannibal: Jack approaches you, certain that you are covering for Will who, Jack believes, is covering for Abigail. Feeling more closed in than you have in a long time, you decide to take any possible doubts or suspicion off yourself. You play a recording for Jack where Will admits to feeling guilty about Marissa Schurr because he felt like he had killed her because he sometimes feels like Garrett Jacob Hobbs.

Jack: “And now he has his daughter.”

Hannibal: “Who Hobbs intended to kill.”

Sprint or war for 10 minutes.

SOMETHING WRONG (Hannibal may skip this task)

Will: You sneak Abigail out of the hospital and take her back to Minnesota. While examining her father’s cabin, you hallucinate killing her. Terrified, she insists there is something wrong with you and hurries out of the cabin, leaving you there alone. Sprint or war for 10 minutes as you blink and “wake up” on a plane back home, sans Abigail.

COULDN’T PROTECT YOU (Will may skip this task)

Hannibal: You return to Abigail’s home in Minnesota and she shows up. She asks why you really called her father that day and you say you wanted to warn him that Will was coming. “I was curious what would happen.” You admit to killing Marissa because you wanted Abigail to kill Nicholas Boyle. She asks how many people you have killed and you say, “Many more than your father.”

Abigail: “Are you going to kill me?”

Hannibal: “I’m so sorry, Abigail. I’m sorry I couldn’t protect you in this life.”

Roll a 6-sided die as you commiserate that fact.

Rolled a 1-2: Write 300 words.

Rolled a 3-4: Sprint for 10 minutes.

Rolled a 5-6: Do both of the above tasks (write 300 words, then sprint for 10 minutes).


Will: After a particularly vivid nightmare, you awaken to find your feet covered in mud. You get up to take some aspirin and end up getting sick in the sink. But when you throw up, what you see is not what you expected – a severed human ear! You call Hannibal to come over and shiver on the front porch, waiting for him to arrive.

Hannibal: After the call from Will, you show up at his place. He tells you what happened – that he hallucinated killing Abigail and returned home alone. You see the ear in the sink and don your most convincing expression of shock and horror before telling him, “Will, we have to call Jack. You can’t run from this. It’ll only be worse.” Will reluctantly nods his agreement.

If you haven’t used any skips so far, write 100 words.

If you have used 1 skip, write 200 words.

If you have used 2 skips, write 300 words.

If you have used 3 skips, write 400 words.

If you have used 4 skips, write 500 words.

(“X may skip this task” notes are free skips & do not count in this total.)

DODGED A BULLET (Hannibal may skip this task)

Will: You have been arrested and processed. Now you sit in an interrogation room across from the last person you want to see you this way. You tell Alana that she dodged a bullet, but she says, “I don’t feel like I dodged a bullet. I feel wounded.” Your next visitor is Jack Crawford who informs you that they found bits of your supposed victims in your fishing lures. You assure Jack that you didn’t kill those people because you weren’t sick when they died. He tells you not to make that argument to him.

Will: “Because then I’d be a psychopath.”

Jack: “My biggest fear is that we’ll learn that you knew what you were doing the whole time.”

Will: “You don’t have to be afraid of that, Jack.”

You now know that you are being set up, but Jack doesn’t believe that. Roll a 6-sided die as you concoct a plan to take matters into your own hands.

Rolled a 1-2: Sprint for 10 minutes.

Rolled a 3-4: Write 300 words.

Rolled a 5-6: Do both of the above tasks (sprint for 10 minutes, then write 300 words).


Will: You escape the prison transport and go to Hannibal’s office to hide out. You are now certain you did not kill anyone, but he is not convinced. You talk him into taking you back to Abigail’s house in Minnesota where you see the blood stains from where the police think you killed her. Hannibal begins to speak, but something is different about him now. Write 2% of your Nano count (up to 1500 words) as you suddenly see him for who he truly is.

Will: “I know who I am. I’m not so sure I know who you are anymore. But I am certain one of us killed Abigail.”

Hannibal: “Whoever that was killed the others.”

Will lifts his gun and points it at Hannibal.

Hannibal: “Are you a killer, Will?”

Will: “I am who I have always been. The scales have just fallen from my eyes. I can see you now.”

Hannibal: As delusional as you want Will to feel, you know he can now see the truth. He can see you. As he points the gun at you, you ask if he will feel good killing you like he did with Garrett Jacob Hobbs. Will says Hobbs was a killer and asks if you are too.

Hannibal: “What reason would I have?”

Will: “You have no discernible motive. That’s why you were so hard to see.”

Will has figured out that you called Hobbs that day because you were curious what would happen.

Will: “You were curious what I would do. Wind him up and watch him go. Well, apparently, Dr. Lecter, this is how I go.”

You flinch away from the gun as Jack Crawford enters the room. He tries to talk Will down to no avail. Will is about to shoot you when Jack beats him to the punch, unloading one round into Will’s shoulder. Will collapses to the floor, looking up at you as he whispers, “See?” Write 2% of your Nano count (up to 1500 words) as you stare down at the injured man who can finally see who you really are.


After his release from the hospital, Will was taken to prison where he awaits trial for Hannibal’s crimes. Hannibal visits him, grinning smugly from the free side of the cell bars. “Hello, Will,” he says. Will rises from the bed and stands across from Hannibal, his knowing eyes filled with hatred and determination. “Hello, Doctor Lecter.”

Sprint to this song[5] as you both contemplate the future of your relationship.