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Fade to Black and White

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Eddie was changing out of his wrestling attire in the locker room, hoping to Dios that his clothes matched. Seeing things only in black and white was problematic when one was trying to dress appropriately. Normally he had Jericho to help him since his friend had a so-called soulmate. The term made him roll his eyes in exasperation. He honestly didn’t understand the whole nonsense that meeting the right person will make you see the “rainbow” or whatever bullshit his fellow wrestler had said. In any case, Jericho was back in the states since Eddie was in Japan. He enjoyed being here, the food and beer were good, but he had to admit that he was lonely and missed hanging out with his former co-workers. His heart panged painfully in his chest when he remembered Art Barr. There was a time that he thought Barr was his soulmate, but he still hadn’t seen a change in his sight after working with the bigger man for a number of years. He shook his head, pushing his grief aside and zipping up his jeans. Art was dead and there was nothing he can do to change that fact, focusing on it will only make him more miserable. He picked up his bag and turned around, intent on leaving the room to go back to his hotel. He bumped into someone and muttered an apology in Spanish, frowning when the man didn’t move out of the way. He looked up to see curious eyes gazing down at him and he recognized the Canadian as one of the wrestlers he’d fought earlier tonight. “Hola, you’re….Chris, right?” he murmured, not sure if he remembered the name correctly. He offered his hand out and a warm smile graced across his lips. “Name’s Eddie.”



Chris quirked an eyebrow up at the messy long hair and the friendly demeanor. It was rare to find another foreigner here in the company since the majority of the wrestlers were Japanese or at least of Asian descent. “Yep, Chris Benoit. Pleasure to make your acquaintance, Ed,” he replied with a toothily grin, accepting the hand and giving it a firm shake. Then he rocked back with a muted gasp when he realized that he was slowly seeing something that he never thought he would be able to. Black and white were replaced with blue, green, orange, and a myriad of other colors in the locker room. He gazed around awestruck and looked back at the smaller man and nearly laughed when Eddie had the same dumbfounded look on the face.



For the first time in his life, Eddie was speechless. His sadness about Art was forgotten as he looked up at the Canadian, noticing how blue the eyes were. “Wait, you’re my soulmate, ese?” he whispered breathlessly, his head spinning. He didn’t think something like this would happen here out of all places. He couldn’t help but chuckle and run a hand through his mullet. “I guess you really did wrestle your way to my heart, vato,” he teased, the corners of his eyes crinkling as he began laughing until his sides ached. It wasn’t that he didn’t think Chris was attractive, but nothing about the other wrestler caught his attention so he wasn’t even expecting this.



Chris just shook his head, smiling at the latino and appreciating the easygoing attitude. He knew he wasn’t exactly a model figure, but he’d got himself stuck into believing that he wouldn’t find anyone. He turned to wrestling as a way of distracting himself and fell in love with the sport. He’d convinced himself that he would be happy doing what he love even if he never found his soulmate. “Now I know what my grandmother was talking about,” he murmured absently, looking down at their hands that were still joined and he squeezed gently. “She used to say that I’ll come across a jokester in my life and he’ll lighten me up, but I always thought that was just her way of telling me to stop taking everything so seriously.”



Eddie laughed heartily at that, clapping Benoit’s shoulder with his other hand. “Now that I agree with. You barely even cracked a smile in our match,” he jabbed playfully. He tugged the Canadian out of the locker room, leading his new friend out to his car. “Speaking of which, I need your help with something. You’re a better wrestler than me and I’ve been having trouble with this one particular move. I got tapes from my old matches,” he rambled, wanting to fill the silence.



Chris snorted and rolled his eyes, not letting go of the chicano and he had to stifle another smile when he saw the state of the sedan. He knew Guerrero wasn’t exactly rich but seeing the man drive an old car was kinda cute. “Alright, I’ll try to help, but you seem to have the attention span of a hummingbird,” he teased, snickering at the taken back look on Eddie’s face.



“You should leave the jokes to me, hombre,” Eddie complained good-naturedly, shoving the bigger wrestler in the passenger seat. He got in the driver’s side and smiled broadly at Benoit. They’d talked a bit in the past, so he was looking forward to getting to know Chris a little more. “By the way, I almost forgot. Isn’t there something that we soulmates are supposed to do….” he trailed off, suppressing a gleeful noise when the Canadian looked at him in confusion.



“I don’t know. Wha---?” Chris cut off when soft lips pressed against his own. He stilled, shocked before he gently pressed back in the warm mouth. His hand curved around the latino’s neck and he hummed when Eddie pulled away. He lost himself in the memorizing brown eyes and he wished the moment hadn’t ended when it did. “That was nice,” he murmured.



Eddie flashed Chris a cocky smirk before he turned his attention back to the dashboard and put his keys in the ignition. “There’s more where that came from, holmes,” he purred sultrily, backing out of his parking spot and leaving the garage. He was grateful that the hotel he was staying at was no more than a ten minute drive away. “But you gotta persuade me to show you a good time, I ain’t some puta,” he joked, winking at Benoit who blushed and he laughed again.



Chris hated how easily flustered he was and he grumbled under his breath, staring out of the window. He sucked in a breath when he noticed how magnificent the moon looked in the sky and the stars glittered brightly. He let out a peaceful sigh, planting his arm on the door and propping his chin in his hand, smiling softly. After 27 years of gray tones, he was never going to take this for granted. His gaze slid back to the chicano, observing his friend fondly and reached out to rest his hand on a jean-clad thigh. He softened as Eddie’s fingers entangled with his after a moment and he really wished he could stay like this forever.



After all these years, he finally found his soulmate.






Snowfall dappled the ground and painted the grass white, but Chris didn’t notice as he raced across the icy sidewalk. It was New Year’s Day, but his lover was nowhere to be seen. Eddie was supposed to be here two hours ago to watch the ball drop with him. He’d called the cell at least a dozen times and they all went straight to voicemail. He hissed through his clenched teeth as he furiously rattled his pocket for his keys to get in his truck. He didn’t even know where the chicano could possibly be, but he couldn’t just sit around and wait. His heart froze in his chest when he noticed how pale the red chevrolet was and he forced the lump in his throat down. He was probably imagining it. After all, it was midnight and everything was going to look a little faded, it was perfectly normal. He drove around the town dazedly, at loss for what he should do. His panic attack was growing worse with each passing heartbeat at how dull everything looked and he swore he could see grayness creeping in. He shut his eyes and shook his head, tears burning. ‘No, no.’ It wasn’t possible. Eddie was fine and probably passed out somewhere. The man wasn’t dead, he couldn’t be dead.



Chris nearly jumped out of his seat when his phone started ringing. He fumbled for the damned thing before he finally answered the call. “Eddie?!” he gasped, hoping to hear his friend’s voice, but then his stomach coiled tightly when an unfamiliar male voice spoke on the other end. He pulled over to the curb off the road and sat back, staring out in disbelief as the man who was a police officer explained about the car crash and how Eddie was taken to a nearby hospital. His throat tightened when the officer said that Guerrero probably wouldn’t make it through the night. He hung up and floored the car to the hospital that was a hour’s drive away. He didn’t give a shit about traffic laws, he had to make it. Streetlamps flew in and out of his sight in a blur as he weaved between cars and careen into the clinic’s parking lot. He ran into the emergency room and hastily brushed past both patients and nurses to get to the front desk. “I’m here to see Eddie Guerrero, he was just taken in. Where is he?” he demanded, ripping the phone out of the secretary’s hand.



After more yelling and arguments, Chris was eventually escorted to a room down the end of the hall away from the crying families and the diseased. He almost fell to his knees at the haggard state of the latino. “Eddie….” he breathed, his words getting strangled. He stumbled towards his lover and cupped the grey face. “Look at me, please,” he whispered, needing to see those brown eyes because the way everything was fading was terrifying him. He sobbed when Eddie winced and blinked at him, taking in the anguished brown eyes. “What happened, cheri?”



Eddie moaned painfully, pushing the hands off his face. He didn’t want to be touched right now. “I was driving and I guess I was drinking too,” he grumbled, rubbing his bruised cheeks. His left arm was broken and his hip was twisted out of its socket. He wasn’t sure how he was even alive right now, but he could barely focused on the distraught man in front of him.



Chris exhaled softly and tried his best not to yell at the younger man. “What did I tell you about drinking and driving?” he growled, pulling a chair up to sit by Eddie. Even though he was angry at how careless his friend was about his own life, Chris couldn’t stay mad. He was just relieved that the chicano wasn’t dead.



“Yes, madre,” Eddie groaned, rolling his eyes and wincing when that hurt his head. He grasped Chris’ hands and squeezed lightly. “I’m fine, papi. I’ll be good as new in a few days,” he reassured the Canadian with a wan smile. He wished the bigger wrestler wasn’t such a worrywart. He’d had worse injuries than this and he knew he would be fully healed in a month or two.



“You clearly need a mom after this,” Chris snapped lightly, shaking his head and caressing Eddie’s cheek. “I could have lost you, Ed,” he murmured in a tight voice, remembering his panic and even now the colors were still faded so he knew Guerrero wasn’t completely out of the woods yet. “When you’re fully recovered, you’re going to rehab,” he ordered.



“Que? C’mon, ese. I’m fine. I like to drink, but that doesn’t mean I have a problem,” Eddie protested loudly, trying to sit up to glare at Chris, but he had to stay still when the pain coursed through him again. He didn’t see the issue. Yeah, sometimes he partied a little too hard, but didn’t everyone else? It was normal and he didn’t even drink and drive all the time.



“Eddie, please. For me? What if I wake up one day and I get a call saying that you’re dead in a hotel room?” Chris pleaded softly, wishing the latino could see his concern. The drinking was borderline unhealthy and he had a suspicion that Eddie was popping pills too, although he didn’t comment on it. That was another battle for another time. He implored his lover with soft blue eyes, knowing Eddie couldn’t resist them.



Eddie sighed when the Canadian turned the puppy eyes on him, hating that Chris knew that was his biggest weakness. “Okay, okay, fine. I’ll go get ‘fixed,’ pendejo. Feliz ahora?” he griped, crossing his good arm across his chest and looking away with a huff. He’ll go to a rehab center just to entertain Benoit, but he doubted it was as serious as his lover was painting it to be. A hand gently grabbed his chin and turned his face back so he was facing Chris again and his irritation died down when he was kissed.



Chris drew away, smiling genially. “Thank you, cheri,” he purred and playfully bumped his nose against Eddie’s, wanting to wash his friend’s grumpiness away. He didn’t know if he was imagining it, but he swore the colors returned to their full vibrant intensity again even if only for a brief second and that was how he knew everything would be okay.







Eddie was dredging behind Chris as they left the building where SmackDown was being held out. The Canadian was carrying his duffle bag because he was too tired from his match. Eddie rubbed his face tiredly and yawned, his hand going down to absently scratch his chest. He had been having trouble breathing properly in his matches, but he didn’t put much thought to it. He probably was overworking himself again. He wondered if he should talk to Vince and ask for a vacation; the thought made him smile and he would love having work off to spend the time with Chris. He blinked when the other man paused and turned to look at him, cocking his head curiously at the concerned blue gaze. “What is it, papi?” he asked bemusedly, wondering what it was that caught Benoit’s attention.



Chris’ eyes were drawn to Eddie’s hand rubbing the chest, his brows furrowing. “You feeling okay? You look tired,” he asked softly, a knot of unease tightening in his gut. Guerrero had been acting weird the past two weeks, constantly sleeping and acting a little slow at work. He wondered if the man had caught something that was going around in the locker room.



Eddie shrugged carelessly. “Si, and I look tired because I am tired, vato loco,” he snarked, throwing Chris a smirk to show that he was just joking around. “The storyline with Dave is just wearing me out, that’s all. I’ll be fine after this weekend,” he soothed the worried Canadian, going up to peck Benoit lightly on the lips. “Nothing like a couple days of rest to leave me refreshed,” he murmured, taking his bag off the Canadian’s shoulder and throwing it in his car. Chavito had asked him if he could stay the night since it’d been a while that they just hung out. “I’ll call you when I get to Chavo’s hotel,” he quipped, nuzzling against his lover’s chest.



“You better,” Chris muttered, burying a kiss in the disheveled hair. He hugged the latino tightly and watched Eddie get in the car, the lowrider driving out of the garage. He shook his concern aside, not wanting to dwell on the feeling of dread. He was most likely just paranoid and besides, he could see everything in their usual glow. That alone made him relax a bit and he got in his truck to return to his hotel. Eddie did seem to be working hard, the smaller man must be exhausted. He smiled when he remembered that Thanksgiving was in a couple weeks. Those few days off would definitely let them both chill out and he was looking forward to spending the holiday with his best friend.



Chris woke up in the middle of the night, having to piss. He threw the blankets off of him, grumbling quietly as he stumbled to the bathroom. He kept his eyes shut as he turned the light on, blindly feeling for the toilet before he flipped the seat up and pushed his sweatpants down. He cracked his eyes open to make sure he wasn’t accidentally hitting the floor or the counter, and he frowned at the shower curtain. He swore it was dark blue when he first arrived in his hotel room, but now it was a faded light hue. He blinked and dismissed the thought, yawning as he tucked himself back in once he was finished. He was tired and it was late, his memory was playing tricks on him.



The following morning, he was making coffee and the colors were still swirling around blinking in and out of focus. “The fuck?” he muttered, rubbing his eyes and wondering if it was the lack of sleep wreaking havoc on his vision. He’d tossed and turned all night for no reason. He brought the coffee mug up to his lips, looking around the room and his gaze coming to a rest on his phone. Maybe he could call Eddie to see if they all want to go out for breakfast.


The next moment his cup dropped out of his hand and shattered on the ground when the grayness permanently took over and he could no longer see the velvet red colors of the sheets on his bed.