(I posted this originally with the true names of individuals for the frightening reality of emotional intensity. But I feel that now that the initial shock is over ... I'm reposting to this board with those names changed to respect the privacy of family. Thank you for reading and understanding.)
Author: Crimson Coin CrimsonCoinyahoo.com
Summery: A tragedy brings a steamy secret affair into light. Is it love, lust ... or something more?
Rating: PG 13
Disclaimer: This story is entirely fictional. Entirely. It does not reflect the lives of those mentioned and is completely untrue. I do not own the WWE are the characters. Nothing is mine. This is fictional for the love of God.
Archiving: Just ask me first.
Timeline: Early November 2003
Chris Irvine watched the television in his locker room. He was already done for the night, but hadn't bothered changing yet. Still in his tights, shirtless, his arms crossed, he watched her match. Watched as she was double teamed, beaten then slapped around some more.
He'd be lying if he said he wasn't attracted to her. Trish Stratus was a beautiful, sexy, goddess of a woman. He'd be lying if he said he didn't love the angle they were currently involved in. He'd be lying if he said he didn't look forward to kissing her on national television in a few weeks.
Chris sighed. He wasn't ashamed of that either. And that upset him. He was a married man, with a son. Yet here he lusted for another woman. And he didn't feel bad. That tormented him.
He felt excitement, watching her gracefully move about the ring. The smooth curves, elegant motions. He didn't know when ... well, more how it happened. It had been some time since he and Trish succumbed to temptation. He couldn't fight, couldn't wait. It was the most intense sex he'd ever had in his life. Just their carnal fierce joining on the hood of his car that one fateful night.
Once they'd given in, they couldn't stop. He need her, Trish ... she just satisfied things that no woman ever had before. Even his wife. God, he hated to think like that, but it was true.
He could feel his need growing. The need that only Trish could satisfy, the thirsting passion she so perfectly quenched. He was disgusted with himself. Disgusted that he could feel this way when a wife and child sat at home. But ... his wife had changed.
She'd become bitter. Especially since the baby was born. She went on a long crying jag months ago about how he's never there and always on the road and she's doing everything alone.
He'd responded by saying the wrestling was his life, his world. The company was pleased with him. They were giving him a big push and an angle with Trish and that everything was amazing. She only went on another tangent after that about hating his career. How she wanted him to quit and 'get a real job' so they could be a real family.
He didn't want that. It would make him miserable, not to be able to wrestle, to do what he'd been dreaming of since childhood. She wanted him to quit his life long dream? How could she actually ask that of someone she supposedly loved?
Chris shook his head in frustration, watching the screen again. His wife had gone on another rant about his angle with Trish, bashing the little diva, calling her names. He hated that. Despite how horrible their recent liaisons had been, Trish really was a great person.
He sighed, ducking his head, his shoulders sagging. God damn it, he didn't know what was what anymore. Right, wrong, or even what he should do. His attention was drawn back to the monitor, Trish's music blaring loud as she taunted from the top of the ramp.
He waited patiently, unable to keep the frown off his face and he walked over to the couch, slumping down into the cushions. His door opened and Trish walked inside.
She took in the sight of him, concern immediately taking precedence. She locked the door, quickly approaching him and crawling into his lap, her legs to either side of him as she wrapped her arms around his neck. "Come here." She cooed, pulling his head to her shoulder, hugging him ... holding him.
Chris wrapped his arms around her tiny body, holding her as tightly as he could and burying his head in her neck. He inhaled ... she always smelt delicious. Even slightly glistening from her match, her skin a little clammy, she felt wondrous.
Trish combed delicate fingers through his hair. She didn't speak, simply held him.
He hugged her close. He knew now. Knew why he'd finally caved to Trish. Because it was after his wife's long tangent. He'd gone to Trish for solace and comfort. And Trish gave him that and a thousand times more.
Trish pushed him back a little so she could look in his eyes. "What's with the sad eyes?"
Chris gripped her waist, rubbing her sides. "I ... I've made a huge mistake."
Trish sighed, bowing her head. "I knew this day would come and ..."
He hooked a finger under her chin, tilting her head up. "I don't mean about us."
She furrowed her brow. "I don't follow you."
Chris leaned back. "I mean with my life. The last four years." He pressed a hand into his eyes. "I've screwed everything up. You know, I thought I did everything well ... and I didn't."
"What are you talking about?"
That hand fell limply to his side. "I think I married my rebound."
Her eyes widened. "What?"
"I'm so fucking stupid." He reprimanded. "The woman I was with before my wife ... Candy. Her and I were real heavy and serious and then ... well, it ended and I was heartbroken. Then I met Kate like a month later and she made me feel better. Thought I fell in love with her and everything. But lately...I'm not so sure."
"I don't understand."
He cupped her cheek, his eyes locking on hers. "It's because of you, Trish."
Wide-eyed, she shook her head, pushing out of his lap. "No. No, nothing me. You are married and have a son and love your wife and your boy and I shouldn't be in the picture and ..."
"You're wrong." He said fiercely, standing and squaring off to her. "The way I feel with Kate is nothing like what it felt with Candy. And the way I felt with Candy pales to what I feel when I'm with you."
Trish shook her head. "I'm not hearing this. I am not hearing this."
"Well, I'm saying it." Chris insisted. "This whole situation is so fucked but ... Kate ... God, I've been miserable since she got pregnant and she's gotten worse. Trish, we've been doing this for months, and I'm head over heels for you."
"No. No, no, no, no, no ..."
"Yes." He sighed, closing his eyes. "God yes, I love you. I have never felt this way and I ... I'm so stuck." He turned his back. "I want to divorce her but ... my boy."
"No." Trish gripped his arm, spinning him viciously. "No, you're delusional, Christopher. You don't want a divorce, you love your wife and your son and ..."
He reached up, cupping her face preciously in his hands. "I love you."
She shoved him back by the chest. "No, you don't." She stepped back. "You don't, you don't."
Trish sighed, ducking her head. "I don't like this." She wiped her eyes then looked up at him. "I will not be responsible for you leaving your family. You have a family, Chris, a home. You'll regret leaving that for this little fling with me."
He stepped closer. "Is that all this is to you? Is that all I am to you? A fling?"
She opened her mouth to speak. Despite how much she fell in love with this man, she would not be a home wrecker. She would lie, lie and say, 'Yes, this was a fling.' She looked in his eyes. "No." Her answer shocked her. That's not what she meant to say. She waved a hand at him. "It doesn't matter. It doesn't matter."
"I will regret losing my chance with you."
A tear slipped down her cheek. "Think of your son."
"No, you're not."
Chris nodded. "Yeah, I am. I'd rather him grow up in a broken home then in an environment where all his parents do is fight. That's all Kate and I do now a days. We're both miserable. I don't want my son growing up with that."
"Chris, think of what everyone will say."
"I don't care about ..."
"Well, you should." She spat, roughly raking the hair from her eyes. "You should care about your reputation and mine. Do you know the label I will get if you do this? It's bad enough most people think I'm a whore. I don't need them armed with something like this."
There was a silence a good few moments and he looked up at her. "If I wasn't married..."
"This whole thing would be different." Trish finished for him. Chris approached her then, looking for an embrace; she shook her head and stepped away. "I will not take you away."
"Too late." He said, deeply, intensely. "You already have my heart. You've had it for a while." His cell phone rang; he didn't move.
"Are you gonna answer that?"
Trish rolled her eyes. "Answer the fucking phone."
He did. "Hello ... speaking ..."
She watched him. He said nothing more, just listening. His expression remained cold. Cold except for his eyes. His eyes glassed over. Yet again, her concern for him taking over, she stepped right up to his side, one arm wrapping around his torso, the other hand on the center of his chest. He looked to her then, his eyes locked on hers. And he looked about to break down into tears.
Chris swallowed hard. "Yeah ... yeah I'm still here."
Trish reached up, wiping the tears from his eyes. God, she'd never seen him cry before. It destroyed her.
He licked his lips. "Yeah, I'll ... I'll take the first flight out. B .. bye." He clicked his phone shut.
"Honey?" Trish cooed, her voice soft and their previous argument flew from her mind. "Honey, what's wrong?"
Chris blinked a few times. "I ... I have to go." He walked to his bag, tossing everything into it.
"Chris?" she watched as he took off his tights and jock then pulled on his street clothes, as if she wasn't even in the room. She swore she could hear him crying. "Chris, sweetie?"
Chris shouldered his bag, then turned to her, tears streaming down his cheeks.
Trish ran to him, her hands reaching for his face as she wiped away the tears, caressing him in the most affectionate way. "Oh God, Christopher. What is it?"
He swallowed hard, shaking his head. "I ... I can't te ... I ..."
"It's ok," she hushed, placing her fingers over his lips, petting his lips then back to his hair, tucking the fibers behind his ear. "You don't have to tell me."
Chris cupped her face, kissing her with such passion and desperation, his tongue so definite in his need for this kiss. Trish kissed him back with a fierce hunger, returning his embrace with the passion and love he so obviously needed to feel.
He kissed her like this for a long few moments, then eventually pulled away to look in her eyes. "Chris?" she cracked out.
Tears continued to prick from his eyes, his hands on her face as he forced the eye contact. "Promise me you won't leave me." A kiss. "My love." Another kiss. "My darling." Another kiss then another and another as the tears continued to pour down his face. "God, I can't lose you, woman. Please." A kiss. "Please don't leave me."
Trish, in turn, cupped his face, looking right through him, her fingers stroking his cheeks and ears. "I won't leave you, Chris. Forget what I said earlier. I love you and I'm not going anywhere."
"I'm with you. I'm not leaving. I swear to you, Love. I'm not leaving you. I refuse to let you go."
"Ever?" his voice cracked, his eyes wide with worry.
"Ever," she breathed.
He kissed her hard, forceful, yet again ... desperate. She responded the same. He pulled away and licked his kiss-reddened lips. "I love you. I love you so much." A hard kiss. "Please, never doubt that." A fiercer kiss and she caved against him. He pulled away then, his eyes closed as he ran out the door.
Trish couldn't help but be worried. The last time she saw or even heard from Chris was Monday and it was already Friday. She couldn't help it. She had to know. She knocked on the door where she stood. Jay Reso opened it.
The blonde man stood there, wide-eyed. "Trish? What are you ..."
"Where is he? God damn it, Jay. He usually comes by once during the week and he didn't even call."
Jay grabbed her arm quickly, and pulled her into the room, closing the door. "Trish ..."
"No. I don't care." She insisted. "I know Chris told you about us and I don't care. I love him, Jay, what the hell is going on?"
"Shhh..." he hushed. "Look, Chris didn't want me to tell you."
"Why?" Trish cried, the tears springing from her eyes. She was near hysterics. "Why? Why?"
"Stop it." He harshly whispered. "Chris isn't here tonight." He sighed, the broken hearted look of this woman simply destroying him. "Last Monday night, Chris got a phone call. His wife ..." Christian pressed a hand into his eyes. "Apparently his wife just snapped. She ... she left a suicide note."
Trish brought a hand to her mouth. "Oh God."
"She didn't only take her life." Jay continued. "She ... she drown their child first. She wanted to hurt him, give him the loss she felt. He ... Chris had to go ID the bodies. " He shook his head. "I haven't talked to him in a couple days. The funeral is tomorrow at eleven. I'm going."
"So am I."
Jay didn't even bother arguing.
Trish stepped out of the car, straightening her long black skirt and blouse as Jay came up beside her. "Come on," he said gently, taking her arm.
She nodded, walking with him towards the large gathering of people. She was nervous. After all, she was the other woman at her lover's wife's funeral. It made no difference. She had to be there ... for him.
She licked her lips, searching the crowd. Spotting him, standing a ways away from everyone else, his head bowed, his long hair tied into a tight ponytail at the back of his head. The minister had finished already and all simply stood in silence, waiting for Chris to drop his rose on the casket. An older couple approached Chris, talking to him, though Chris seemed trance-like, except for the tight shaking grip he held on the rose.
Trish walked up to him from behind, placing a small hand on his shoulder. "Christopher," she breathed.
Chris dropped the rose, turning immediately and locking eyes with her.
She reached up a shaky hand, cupping his cheek as her thumb brushed away his tears.
He gathered her into his arms, holding her tightly, ignoring everyone else trying to talk to him. His relatives, Kate's relatives, everyone. Chris only focused on holding the woman in his arms. As more people tried to talk to him, he buried his head further into her neck. "Hold me, Trish," he whispered into her ear.
"Shh," she hushed, squeezing him tighter, his shoulders shaking, breathing ragged. He was crying. "It's ok, Baby." She breathed so only he could hear. "That's right, Love. It's ok. Let it all out."
And he did. Cried his eyes out in the arms of this woman. His tears couldn't stop, the feel of her only making his cries harder. Her hands rubbing his back and shoulders before one gently rested on the back of his head. And she held him. Held him in the most comforting beautiful way.
"Shh, it's all right, Christopher."
Chris shuddered as her lips brushed against his ear in a soft kiss and he tightened his arms. Voices carried to his ear from behind. "Look at how destroyed he is. Poor, Chris. Losing his wife. Kate was so good. She was so good to him, putting up with him on the road all the time and ..."
Angered, Chris pushed away, turning furious eyes on the man who spoke. "You Jackass. You know something? I'm not crying over your bitch sister. I was gonna divorce her anyway, the miserable selfish whore. I'm crying because she killed my son. She took my boy from me. My baby boy. She ... she took him." The tears fell, his knees giving way. "My boy."
Trish wrapped her arms around him, supporting him to the ground. He was so heavy though, so very heavy and her efforts did little to slow his collapse. "Chris," she said to him. "Chris, hey ... hey, look at me, sweetie." She cupped his face.
He turned that teary gaze onto her. "She took my boy because he had my eyes. My baby had my eyes. She took my Joey from me because my son looked like me. And now they buried my boy, my baby son with ... with her."
Chris shook his head. "I don't have anything left. I ... I have nothing." He cried.
"That's not true, Chris." Jason said softly, stepping beside him and placing a gentle hand on his friend's shoulder. "You have me and Trish."
Trish nodded, brushing her fingers over his brow. "And you still have your family. Your mother and your father. And all these people here care about you."
Jay nodded. "That's right, Chris."
But Chris viciously shook his head. "None of these people know me. They ... they don't know. They don't ... Trish I ..."
"Shhh," Trish cooed. "It's ok, Sweetie."
But Chris coughed, choking on his tears. "No ... no, it's not. Joey ... my baby boy was the most important thing to me in the world and she ... she took him from me. She took my baby boy. And now ... now I don't have him. I ... I can't watch him grow up and ... and send him to school and hug him when I get home and ... and ... all I have is you, Trish. You ... you're the only person who understands. Oh God, don't leave me." He gathered her in his arms again, hugging her and completely unaware of the new glances directed at him.
"Chris," she sighed, easing him back and cupping his face, forcing his ice blue eyes to meet hers. "I told you before and I tell you now. I'm not going anywhere Ok? And neither is Jay. We're both here for you, forever. Now for some reason, God felt the need to take your son from you. And I don't know why ..." she wiped the new tears from his eyes and cheeks. "And it seems cruel, but there was a reason. Baby, you have to trust that." She gently shook his head with that emphasis. "Trust that somehow this is all right. And your little boy will always be with you. Because he was a part of you." She smiled, brushing a thumb over his cheek then his lips. "And a piece of him will always be with you. Kate could never take that away from you. Ever."
Chris didn't respond, simply stared at her. At those eyes, so pronounced and wise and beautiful. He obeyed as she helped him to stand, yet still couldn't speak.
Trish adjusted her clothes then his, straightening his suit jacket. "Now all these people are here. Here for Kate and for your little boy, and for you." As a tear slipped from his eye, she reached up to wipe it away. "This is your time to mourn. Don't be angry."
"I refuse to mourn that woman." He said, fiercely with a sudden surge of anger. "I don't care what you all think." Chris announced. "She made my life miserable. And even with her dead, she managed to continue that. I will not mourn the death of that bitch."
"Christopher." Trish reprimanded. "Censor your thoughts for God's sake. She wasn't only your wife. She was a daughter, a sister, cousin, friend. Let these people mourn in peace without this assault."
Frustrated, angry, upset, Chris closed his eyes, tilting his head back as he exhaled a long breath. He turned his attention back to the casket, his eyes watering and glassed as he picked up the rose, holding it. Licking his lips, he reached behind him, desperately grabbing for Trish's hand.
Trish let him, taking his hand and standing at his side, her hand squeezing his, the other hand stroking his hair then down his arm in comfort.
Chris shuddered, his breathing shaky as he swallowed hard, fisting the rose so tight, the thorns dug into his skin.
"Sweetie," Trish cooed, placing her hand on his forearm. "Come on, put the rose on the coffin. Put it down."
He viciously shook his head, little trickles of blood oozing from his fisted hand.
"Chris," she softly, pleaded. "Stop."
His arm shaking, his lips curled, his eyes narrowing and he threw the rose to the ground, slamming an angered foot onto the bud.
Chris turned his gaze on the woman who spoke. His mother. But he only shook his head again, clutching at Trish's hand. "No, Mom. Don't you reprimand me. You don't understand. You never could."
"Chris," Trish's soft voice whispered. "Sweetie, don't. Just don't."
"I never told her how much I hated her." He snarled under his breath, ignoring the gasps and tisks that the others gathered emanated.
"This is your fault."
Chris and Trish both turned towards the voice, an angered scowling woman in her thirties glared at Trish.
"It's your fault." The woman growled. "Kate told me about you, Trish Stratus. About what you've been doing for the last few months with Chris."
Trish's eyes widened at the unexpected accusation. Though truth, she didn't expect it.
The woman glared. "Oh, I know all about you. How you seduced Chris away. Stole him from his family, and his little boy."
Trish shook her head, trembling as she stepped away from Chris. "No. No, it wasn't like that."
"Kate told me everything." The woman snarled. "How Chris had been different lately, and more agitated and arguable. And that sometimes he'd storm out ... or when he'd come back and smell of perfume. She knew about you, you cheap whore. And it's your fault she killed herself. It's your fault my baby sister snapped and ... and ..."
"No!" Trish quickly said. "No, no no no."
"It's your fault, you filthy bitch. If you couldn't keep your legs closed ... did it have to be Chris? A married man for heaven's sake, don't you have any morals? Don't..."
"Stop it!" Chris shouted at the sight of Trish's tears and he reached for her. Trish viciously shook her head, stepping away from him but Chris only swore, grabbing her roughly and pulling her against him, wrapping his arms securely around her.
Trish struggled at first, but soon gave in, clutching at him as the tears fell and she ducked her head into his chest, hiding the best she could. His arms, his body engulfed her, protecting her and blocking out the angry stares and glares.
Chris shook his head, rocking Trish in his arms as his angered stare met that of the others present. "Your sister drove me to her arms." He spat venomously. "Trish gave me hope and love and a reason to live. She gave me everything that Kate never could."
"Chris, please." His mother intervened.
"No, Mother." He insisted. "I will not have anyone judging me or her. None of you know. None of you know what I went through. How all Kate did was criticize me and try to force me to do things I didn't want to do. You know what? She kicked me to the couch eight months ago. Eight months. I would come home and every time she would yell and hiss and I'd sleep on the couch. I would find my son crying for me and every time she'd try to take him away, rip him from my arms. He would cry and she would yell and he wouldn't stop. Then she'd leave the room and I'd pick him up ... and he stopped while I held him."
He hugged Trish closer, running his hands over her back in the most affectionate way. "I got lonely." He breathed, tears pricking at his eyes as he stared down the surprised and shocked crowd. "And Trish made me feel wanted and desirable. She wanted me at her side at night, she let me hold her when we slept, she let me take care of her when she was hurt. God damn it, she just let me touch her. And I fell in love with her."
When Trish cuddled further into him, he hushed her a moment, caressing her hair before he glared at the others again. "You can't blame me. It wasn't my fault and it wasn't hers either. We ... we were both looking for the same thing. We ... we both ... we needed to feel that. To feel love. And I love her. Just like she loves me. Kate never loved me. She loved my money, the lifestyle. Trish doesn't need the money. She loves me ... just me."
He couldn't hold back a tear or two, oh hell, a dozen. "I love her, Mom. I would dread the days I had to leave her, the only reason I would was for Joey. And then I would go back to her, back where I was wanted and needed and loved." He looked down at the little blonde as she cuddled further into him, as if she wished to disappear. "Back to Trish."
"Christopher," his mother breathed, stepping up to her son and reaching up with a shaky hand, brushing her fingers over his hair and tucking some stray strands behind his ears. "Christopher, even if you didn't love Kate and didn't want to be with her, what you did was wrong."
Chris swallowed hard, his eyes glassed and reddened from tears; sad, drawn, his body shaking slightly as he held his lover. "It didn't feel wrong, Mom." He responded, softly. "Nothing felt wrong with Trish. It felt wrong with Kate." He hugged Trish tighter for a moment. "She's all I have left now. She ... she's the only person who really knows me and loves me. Joey was the most important thing in my life. And now he's gone. He's dead. My boy is dead ..." he sniffled. "Because ... because of her." He shook his head. "I can't feel sad for her because she stole my son from me. She killed him, Mom. She killed him."
"Chris," his mother cooed.
"I don't care, Mom." Chris answered in a choked voice. "I don't care what any of you say or think. You have no right to judge me." He felt Trish shuddering in his arms and he eased her back, cupping her face as he ducked down to look in her eyes.
Her lower lips trembled, her eyes puffy and red and she sniffed, wiping her nose with the back of her hand. She ducked her head then, her hair falling to the sides and blocking her face from view.
Chris brushed his thumbs over her cheeks, wiping away the tears. "Shh," He hushed, softly at her. "Why don't you go with Jay. Go back to the hotel."
Trish gave a shaky nod, keeping her head down as she stepped away from him. Wrapping an arm around her stomach, she brushed through the crowd towards the car.
Chris quietly eased open the door to Trish's hotel room. Jay had given him the key, though Chris had to fight for the other man to give it up. He cocked his head, eyeing her worriedly as she lay on her side on the bed, her back to him.
He sighed, walking slowly around the bed, tilting his head as he looked at her. "Sweetie?"
Trish didn't respond. Her head pillowed on her arm, her eyes bloodshot and glassed. She licked her lips.
"Baby?" Chris breathed, kneeling in front of her. His eyes took in her form, curled into herself, her knees brought up to her chest. Her arm rested on her side, her hand caressing her abdomen. He reached out, brushing his hand over her cheek. "Baby, I'm so sorry."
She gave a slow shake of the head. "No ... no, I ..." she sniffled. "There's something I ... I need to tell you." She slowly rubbed her hand on her lower abs, circular as if easing her discomfort.
"What is it, Sweetheart?" he cooed.
Trish closed her eyes. "I'm sorry, Chris."
"For what?" he asked, placing a large warm hand on her cheek, brushing his thumb along the underside of her eye, catching the tears.
"On Monday, that ... that was to be my last match with the WWE for a long time."
Chris cocked his head, confused. "You ... you were going to leave?"
"I had to." She breathed, opening her eyes to look at him a moment. Then she ducked her head, looking at her stomach and her hand still caressing. "But ... but I don't have to ..." Her face scrunched up, contorted with her new tears as her shoulders shuddered. "anymore."
He didn't respond.
Sniffling, Trish forced her eyes opening, composing herself best she could. "I ... I was going to tell you ... on ... on Monday but ... but I ... I didn't. God, I'm so sorry"
"Didn't what?" Chris asked, caressing a gentle hand down her arm to her fingers, entwining them and in turn, rubbing her stomach.
"That ..." she swallowed hard. "That I didn't tell you the moment I found out."
"Found out wha ..." Chris trailed off, a distant knowing settling in and he looked to their entwined fingers on her stomach. The way she caressed, the way she trembled, how careful she'd been, how in the mornings she'd ... He tilted his head to the side, his eyes never leaving her stomach. "How long?"
Trish closed her eyes, rubbing her hand over her stomach as tears pricked in her eyes. "Seven weeks. Oh God, I'm so sorry." She forced her eyes open, looking in his, the tears streaming down her eyes as her voice chocked on her tears. "Oh Chris, I'm so sorry. I ... I ... I don't know what happened. I ... I just ... I ..."
Chris watched her stumble off into sobs and he bowed his head.
She eased away from him, sitting up on the bed. "I'm so sorry, Chris. I ... I wanted to keep the baby. I ... I really did. I had full plans to. I ... I could never abort and the thought never crossed my mind and I ... I just don't know what happened and ... and all of a sudden ... when ... when I got back ... to ... to the hotel I ... I started menstruating and ..." She buried her face in her hands, her whole body shaking with her cries. "I'm so sorry. I ... I'm so sorry."
Chris sighed, tears coming to his own eyes as he quickly gathered her into his arms, pulling her in his lap as he hugged her tightly against his chest, burying his face in her hair. "Oh Sweetie. Shh, shh, please. Please, don't cry. It ... it kills me to see you cry."
"I ... I ... I can't help it, Chris. I ... I can't. I ... I killed ..."
But he viciously shook his head, squeezing her tighter as the tears continued to threaten his eyes. "No, you didn't. You didn't do anything. This is all my fault. I should've told you on Monday what happened and ... and I never should have exposed you to what happened at the funeral. God, I lost control and I ... I did this." He cried, pressing his wet eyes into her neck.
Trish roughly tangled her fingers in his hair, clutching him to her shaking body. His arms and body so warm against hers, so comforting. Yet his touch brought nothing but pain. Pain of the child, his child that she lost. Her body had rejected the child fathered by the man she loved. "My body killed your child. I ... I killed your child."
"Stop that." He demanded, holding her tighter. "Stop it, just ... just stop it."
She shook her head, easing him back to look sadly in his eyes. "I can't do this, Chris." She said, brokenly. "I ... I can't. So ... so much has happened and I can't do this anymore."
"Don't say that, Baby." He said. "Don't say that. It was my fault. The first trimester is always so delicate and all this shit ... I ... I brought it all on us and ..."
"No, Chris." She interrupted. "It's not you. It's ... it's me. I ..." she licked her lips. "I love you. I love you, Chris. So much. But we need to stop."
Chris's world shattered.
Trish licked her lips, cupping his face to force his teary eyes to stay on hers. "We ... we need a break. We ... we need time. You need time. You need time to ..."
"I don't want time," he said quickly. "I don't want anything. God, don't leave me. I ... I need you, Trish. Please."
But she only shook her head. "No. You need time to mourn your son. I need time ... time to mourn mine."
He swallowed hard, leaning forward and pressing his forehead to hers. "I need you, woman. Don't you leave me. Please God, don't leave me."
"I have to," she breathed, closing her eyes against the tears, nuzzling him with greatest affection. "I have to. For ... for me. Chris, I know how horrible everything has been and how our worlds are just collapsing in on themselves." She cupped his face, easing him back from her. "But ... I love you and ... and you love me. And ... and I can't have you love me because you need me and I'm all there is. I ... I don't want you clinging to me as a last hope. I ..." she sighed.
"Trish, please." He begged, and he felt cold when she stood, stepping back from him. "Please, don't."
"I'm sorry, Chris." She whispered, leaning down and cupping his cheek, her own eyes filling with tears at the sorrow in him. "You're the love of my life." She sniffled, brushing her thumb over his lips. "But I ... I just have to get away. I have to heal."
Chris swallowed hard as she leaned down, softly and sweetly pressing her lips to his, kissing him so lovingly he had to close his eyes to keep from crying. As she pulled back, he leaned towards her, desperate for her not to leave yet. And Trish wrapped her lips around his one last time, reinforcing the tender kiss before pulling completely away.
Chris slowly shook his head, his eyes tearing as she turned her back, walking away. "No," he whimpered. "No, Baby."
But she didn't hear him. The door closed behind her.
It had been six months since he set foot in an arena. Chris sighed, absorbing the atmosphere, the sensations of finally being home.
The day after Trish left, Chris had a match. A match that he was entirely too distracted for and because of that, he was injured. He tore his left tricep.
It was probably the most painful injury of his career; he never knew pain like that existed. A single slip up was all it took and in an instant, he'd suffered such a serious injury. His thoughts were consumed with Trish, overwhelming in their intensity and because he lost control, he injured himself.
Six months of recovery and still, he wasn't back to normal. His arm was still somewhat weak, though he'd been given clearance to return to work. Glancing at his arm, he readjusted the cloth bandaged that wrapped around his upper arm, tightening it then tucking the corner.
Wincing, he rolled his shoulder then rubbed his sore arm, walking down the musky corridor of the arena. He knew where he was going, even if he didn't want to admit it.
Licking his lips, he stared at the heavy door to the women's locker room. Knock ... don't knock ... barge in ... turn tail and run. That last option felt mighty sweet at that moment and Chris only ducked his head with a sigh.
He had to see her. He just had to. There was no other reason. He'd spent six months recouping from an injured body, an injured mind, heart and soul. Though he felt healed, in reality he knew that healthy was no where in sight. He was far from recovered. His body was getting there, slowly, but still progressing. His mind and soul had found peace, his heart no longer shattered. And yet something was wrong.
No one knew he was at the arena. He avoided everyone, ducking around corners and staying in darker areas of the arena. He wasn't supposed to be back for another two weeks. But he couldn't resist.
Chris reached up with a tentative hand, placing his open palm on the door. He could feel her. He could feel her inside, her life essence vibrating through the door and filling him through his hand. Her warmth, her most comforting warmth.
Slowly, quietly, he pushed the door open. She stood across the room, her back to him as she situated her belongings in the locker. Clothes, makeup, shampoo and body sprays. Her hair had grown out a bit and it must be newly dyed. Bright blonde and long, it hung softly down just below her shoulder blades. But other than that, she looked the same. Her figure, her body, the same.
She paused her actions, as if sensing a change in the atmosphere; Chris felt it too. She glanced over her shoulder, spotting him. Her eyes wide, her brow confused, she turned, her eyes locking on his.
In that moment, Chris held no more doubts. He was truly found, he was whole, healed in the most perfect way, in the way that his being yearned to be healed. His stomach clenched and twitched, his heart racing as his breaths caught high in his throat. He swallowed hard as she took a few steps, closing the distance between them.
His iced eyes watched her intently as she scanned his body as if rememorizing his form. Her trembling hand slowly reached out, the fingertips delicately brushing over his injured arm then across the expanse of his chest; her touch served to reinforce those memories.
His knees weakened at that slight touch, his body quivering and he sucked his lower lip into his mouth. Her eyes scanned his chest, abs, legs, arms, every inch of his body before finally raising. Those tear-filled brown eyes glistened as she searched his eyes.
He sighed, his own eyes moistening and she reached up, running her fingers over his cheek. His lips parted and he closed his eyes when she placed her fingers over his lips and he shuddered at the touch.
Her fingers tickled down his chin, the tips scraping along his scruff covered jaw as she traced back to his ear, tucking the stray straggly strands of blonde hair behind the shell. He forced his eyes open. "Tri..."
"Shhh," she hushed, silencing him by pressing her fingers back over his lips. Those fingers trailed back again so she could cup his cheek, her thumb brushing his lips as she stared, her eyes locked on those moist pink lips. "Don't ... don't speak."
Her thumb constantly brushing his lips, she reached up with her other hand, splaying the palm on his chest before resting it over his racing heart, letting his life rhythm infuse her core, letting her heart beat match his.
Her touch, simply touch was enough to break his heart. Her touch so beautiful it brought him pain. His tears flowed freely.
"Shhh," she hushed again, reaching up to wipe away his tears as she look at him with concerned eyes. "Shh, don't cry."
He sniffled. "God, Trish." He sighed. "I've been so lost." He closed his eyes. "I ... I went to Joey's grave last week and ... and ..."
Chris shook his head, reaching up quickly and grabbing one of her hands with both of his. "No, you don't understand. I ... I felt nothing." He licked his lips. "I ... I felt nothing because he wasn't there. There was nothing there ... just ... just the remnants and empty shells of my child and my wife. There ... They weren't there. It ... being there brought me no comfort. But there was also no pain."
Trish cocked her head, fisting his hands in hers as well as caressing his tear stained cheeks.
He blinked a few times, clearing his eyes. "And then, I finally managed to pack up Joey's things, and put them in the attack. I ... I have them boxed. I can't live there anymore. I ... I don't know where I'm going to go but I can't stay there. I'm selling all the furniture, everything that's there. I ... I'm only taking my clothes. I ... I have to start all over again."
He swallowed the twitching nerves in his throat then reached up with a shaky hand, gently touching her cheek. "Ev ... every day since my injury, since you left me ... I ... I've been thinking. Cuz ... well, there's not much else to do. God, it feels so wrong ... but it feels so right."
"What does?" she cooed, stroking his brow.
Chris looked to the ground, his eyes downcast as his hands pressed delicately onto her stomach. "I'm sorry. I'm sorry that I killed our child."
"Let me say this." He choked out. "I worried you and I put you in a position that you never should have been in, much less if you were carrying our child. And I should have been responsible and adult and just told you everything and called you so that you didn't worry and ..." he sighed. "For putting you through that, I'm sorry."
It was his turn to place his fingers over her lips, silencing her. Their eyes locked, their faces only inches apart, as the tears dropped simultaneously down both their cheeks. "It's true." He breathed with a shaky voice. "It's true and I can only plead for your forgiveness. Nod, if you forgive me."
Trish didn't hesitate, their eyes locked as she gave a slow nod.
He closed his eyes a moment, composing himself before forcing those icy eyes open. "I'm forever sorry and there's nothing I can do to make up that loss to you. I ... I can't even imagine and ... I ..."
"Chris, wait." She interrupted. "Please, let me say something." When he didn't respond, she continued. "I never blamed you."
"Doesn't matter." He said. "I blame myself. I blame myself for the loss of both my children."
"Chris, stop it." She forced out through the tears. "None of this is your fault. Is ... is that what you spent these last months thinking about? Just blaming yourself?"
He inched closer to her, his eyes narrowing. "Look into my eyes. What do you see?"
Trish shook her head, anger and frustration flashing in her eyes. "I see the shell of the man I used to love."
Taken by surprise, Chris stepped back from her, his mouth slightly agape.
She only waved a hand in the air, dismissing him. "You're not the Chris Irvine that I love. What happened to him? Where did he go?"
He forced a sadistic smile. "Where did he go?" He laughed. "He died the day you walked out of his life. That's where Chris Irvine went." He shook his head. "How could you do that to me? How could you leave me?"
"You!" She growled at him, her eyes darkening with rage.
"Yes, you." He snarled. "How could you be so selfish?"
"Me!" She screamed. "You're calling me selfish. How dare you. How ... how dare you!"
Chris raked a rough hand through his hair, pushing the obnoxious fibers out of his eyes. "I lost everything." He said, deep and intense in his tone. "Everything. I lost my wife and two children. And then ... the woman I love told me that 'she can't do this'. And then she just walks out of my life when I needed her most. When I needed to hold her and have her hold me and just tell me that everything will be ok. That was what I needed, what I wanted."
Fresh tears prickled at Trish's eyes but she furiously wiped them away. "You self righteous bastard. You act like this is all my fault and you're clean. I lost a child too, Chris. I lost a child." She sniffed. "And you know something I realized while you were gone? I ... I didn't know how much you meant to me and then ... Bam ... out of no where, I'm pregnant. And just as quickly as I knew, I lost that child. That child was ripped from me. I was carrying the child of the man that I love ... and I lost that child!"
Trish forced the tears back, her eyes glaring. "I didn't realize how much I loved you until I lost that child. I ... I ..." she ducked her head, pacing one way then the next as she wiped the tears from the corners of her eyes. "I loved you so much that when I lost that child, I was destroyed. It was that moment that I realized how much you meant to me. That I wanted to have your children and I ... I wanted to be the one you call 'wife' and the one that you hold every night and make love to me and not have to hide that anymore. And then we'd even grow old and senile together. Everything. All of that. I realized all of that the moment I lost that child."
She shook her head at him. "And you ... you fucking selfish bastard. You act like I don't feel anything." She poked a tiny finger at his chest, her eyes and tone accusing. "You ... you act like you're the only victim here. There are five victims here, Chris. Five. Not just you."
Chris sighed, taking a step closer as his eyes fogged with sorrow. "Why did you leave me?"
Trish closed her eyes a moment. "And still you only think of yourself."
But Chris shook his head, stepping flush against her and cupping her face in his hands, forcing the eye contact. "I'm thinking of you." He gruffed. "Why did you leave? If you felt that way the moment you miscarried, why would you leave me? Why wouldn't you let me heal you just like you could heal me?"
"I couldn't." she whimpered, unable to tear her teary eyes from his. "It ... it was too late after I left. Plus I ... I needed to try and heal ... on my own." She swallowed hard, licking her lips as her throat twitched with her cries. "I didn't want to be dependent. I ... I had to make sure I could still be ok on my own. But ... but ... that doesn't mean I didn't need you or want you and was just too proud to ... to call you." Her breath quivering, she forced her words. "I wanted you more. I ... I knew I needed you and ... and I knew you weren't there and it forced me to be strong."
"I'm not that strong, Trish." He whispered then pressed his forehead to hers, closing his eyes as his nose affectionately nuzzled hers, his soul needing that contact. "I'm not that strong. I ... I couldn't go from having everything to nothing in a matter of hours."
"It was days, Chris. Days."
"No," he breathed. "I lost my son. But I still had you. I had something, everything in you. And then I lost you and our child. Our child that was conceived in love ... true love. Not like the love that Kate and I shared. I did love Kate but ... but Joey wasn't conceived in the right kind of love. I think that is why he was taken from me. I ... I'm being punished for taking Kate away from a man who would have loved her ... all because I just needed someone. I didn't deserve Joey ... not yet. The child I deserve is the child I have with the woman I truly love."
Trish closed her eyes at those final words, willing the tears to cease slipping from the corners as her arm slid around her abdomen, cradling her womb.
"I'm sorry, Trish." He apologized, softly. "I'm sorry for not being a man, for being so irresponsible and bringing such pain to you." His eyes closed, he dropped to his knees at her feet, his arms wrapping around her waist as he pressed his cheek to her stomach and bowing his head, his eyes hiding in the crook of his arm. "I'm so sorry." He mumbled.
She bent over slightly, wrapping her arms around his head, petting his hair and simply holding him to her. Her tears still leaking, one then a second dripped from her eyes and onto his blonde mane. Sniffling, she cupped his face, tilting his eyes upward as she opened her eyes, looking onto his. Equally teary, equally sorrowed, she brushed her thumbs over his cheeks. "We have to make this all right." She said in a choked voice.
"I know," he answered. "But I ... I ... I don't know how."
Trish knelt as well, her hands never abandoning his face. "Do you still love me even after six months?"
"It's been hell without you." He said, brokenly. "I ... I don't want to do this without you anymore."
Trish inched closer to him, her eyes intense on his. "Then where is the Chris Irvine I fell in love with?"
Chris bowed his head, his lower lip quivering with his unshed tears. "I don't know." Audibly swallowing the lump in his throat, he shook his head, his eyes meeting hers and he reached out with a trembling hand, brushing his fingers over her cheeks. "Help me find him. I ... I'm so lost. Help me, Trish. I haven't been right. Please ... help me."
She nodded, stroking his brow, cheeks, jaw then back through his hair. "We can't worry about anyone else. We can't worry about our reputations. They're already ruined so it doesn't matter. And I don't care anymore. I don't care what people say or think about me. I don't need anyone's approval and neither do you. Now, it's your turn. Look ... look in my eyes."
Chris obeyed, falling silent as his eyes focused on hers. Searching desperately, he didn't look away. Her light brown eyes, those beautiful eyes expressed so many emotions on every occasion. Those eyes that would show love then passion then sympathy then joy and sorrow, every emotion easily read. "I am the same man." He said in a husky voice, his eyes never leaving hers, searching one then the other in his attempt to see her soul.
Trish shook her head, keeping their eyes locked. "No. You're the broken remnants of that man."
"No, I'm not." He answered, intensely. "I know what I need." He didn't give her a chance to respond.
Trish gasped as his lips found hers and he pulled her close, curling her into his body, his head hooked as he pressed tightly against her. She shuddered, an incredible charge flowing from him to her, a charge she'd never felt before despite his many kisses. This kiss was different. It wasn't deep or passionate or even creative. It was raw. It was needy and pure.
Her hands instinctively splayed across his cheeks, holding him in place so he would never pull away. Her chest pressed to his, she crawled into his lap, her knees to either side of him as she tried to bury into his body. The charge quaking her body, she trembled under his kiss and his arms wrapped even tighter around her torso, his wondrous palms open and pressing into her back.
She couldn't breathe, couldn't think, couldn't move. She didn't want to move or think. His kiss ... it had been so long since she'd felt his kiss. And yet, this kiss was not like any other. The longer his lips held hers, the more intense the connection. She could feel every essence leaking from her into him and in turn receiving everything from him and he was filling her.
Trish quivered as his lips abandoned hers and he kissed down her jaw to her throat. A sigh slipped from her lips as her head tilted back, giving him easy access and his lips attached to the spot he knew so well. Her arms clutching him, she arched into him, her body surging with the newest sensations and her mind couldn't categorize what she felt.
He bent her over slightly, kissing along her collar bone then down the exposed skin of her chest, pressing his lips just to the top swell before pulling her back to him, his lips crushing to hers again.
Her heart stopping, she quaked in his arms, her body shaking with the intensity as she collapsed, falling limp against him. Chris chose that moment, sliding his slick tongue into her mouth and it was his turn to shudder at her moan, the vibration of that sound against their tongues causing him to rumble a growl.
Her hands raked through his hair, one fisting at the back as the other clutched at his shoulders, wordlessly submitting to him. She could feel the change in his kiss. The longer he kissed her, the more he changed. His kiss remained electric though she could feel her lover emerge. She could feel the man she loved in this kiss where before she could not. She could feel Chris Irvine in this kiss.
Cupping his face, she eased him back and he reluctantly obeyed, though not without pressing his lips to hers one last time. Panting, he pressed his forehead to hers, licking his lips and in turn, hers. Their lips soaked and swollen from such kisses, their breaths short and their bodies shaking, they clung helplessly to each other.
Trish swallowed hard, gathering the composure to speak first. "Chris ... why ... so different."
He sighed. "Because now I'm kissing you the way you deserve to be kissed. I was stupid to do things the way I did and I don't intend to make any more mistakes in my life." He licked his lips again, prepping them for the privilege to touch them to hers again. "I intend to live every moment as if it were my last, to spend every breath in making sure you know how much I love you." He ran his hands down her sides, squeezing her waist before tickling his fingers up the back of her shirt, letting her feel his touch on her skin. "I'm going to spend every moment I can worshiping and adoring this body. I want you to feel bliss every second you're with me. And I want to have a family and I want you be the mother of my children and I'm not going to mess anything up this time."
Trish choked on her cries, his words overwhelming her.
"And you'll do the same for me." He said, lowly, his lips brushing hers as he spoke. "You're going to worship my body as I do yours. And you're going to have my heart as I have yours. And we'll have each other, completely and totally. No more doubts, no more loss, no more pain. Fuck everyone else. We don't need them or their judging. Our closest friends won't judge and that's what matters. We're going to do this right, Trish."
Trish smiled brightly, wrapping her arms around his neck as she hugged him, her cheek pressed to his as she giggled her excitement. "We started wrong, Chris, but we'll make it right. We'll make it right and neither of us will be lost again. Oh God, Chris I ..." She sniffled swallowing her joyous tears. His scent, his touch, his voice ... she was home in his arms. "I love you so much, Chris. I wish ... I wish I never left. God I was so stupid and ..."
"Shhh," he hushed, rocking her slightly. "We needed it. The ... the time apart helped us learn and know ..." His voice deepened, lowered with his intensity. "God, Woman, I love you."
"Will it all be ok?"
Chris nodded, his eyes closing. "Yes, Baby. It will all be ok. Good Lord, you're finally in my arms again. It'll all be ok and we're gonna make it right. Darlin, let's leave. Let me take you back to my suite and I'll make sweet passionate love to you."
Trish shook her head, pushing back from him and when she looked in his eyes she saw worry and rejection. But she smiled beautifully, cupping his face in her hands. "No, no, sweetie. I just ... I don't want to go anywhere." She answered, her eyes darkening seductively and she licked her lips. "I saw you lock the door and I don't want to wait to have you." She tickled her fingers down his chest then back up to splay casually across his cheeks. "I don't want to feel lost anymore. I want you to make me whole ... by becoming one with me right here ... right now."
He smiled, sexily, running his hands over her back. "That sounds like a line from a cheesy romance novel."
"But isn't it a beautiful thought?"
"That it is." He answered with a slow nod. "But we're going to do this right, Baby. And we're gonna walk outta this arena hand in hand and I'm going to carry your bag – on my good shoulder of course – and we're gonna pick up a bottle of champagne and some sort of sexy dessert and when we get back ... oh just you wait."
"What?" she asked, excited as he helped her stand. "Tell me."
He flashed that patented sexy quirky smirk. "Well, Missy, you have your match first and we'll leave it as a surprise."
"Tell me." She asked again, tugging on his arm.
"Ok," he cooed, pacifying her. "Well first ... we'll have a little dessert, which I plan on eating off every inch of your body. And then ... well, we should clean up in the hot tub in the bathroom. And then ... there's a perfectly good bed that hasn't been christened yet."
Trish smiled, reaching up to touch his cheek. "And no more pain ... right?"
"No more pain, Sweetie." He repeated softly. "No more pain. Fuck the world, Baby. We're going to be happy."
"We can love each other now, right?"
Chris nodded, cupping her cheek and pulling her closer. "I ain't planning on stopping anytime soon." He kissed the tears from her cheeks, her eyes, then finally sealing their lips with heart wrenching love. And he didn't stop anytime soon.
Little strange, huh? Read, review, let me know what you think.