Title: Careless Whispers
Author: Emono
Rating: FRM
Fandom: Wrestling
Pairings: Ted DiBiase/Cody Rhodes (Codiasi), Ted/Kristen
Summary: Cody's tired of being the other woman, and he forces Ted to make a choice on his. Either leave his wife or don't come back. For Ted's 27th birthday.
Disclaimer: The WWE is not mine nor are any of it's child branches, it is the 96% property of the McMahon's and God bless the bastards that work for them. I respect the sexual preferences and identities of all the wrestlers on WWE roster, and who they share a bed with is really none of my business.
Warnings: Angst, choice, some love, slash, Kristen-bashing, song-fic

Ok, I know that this song doesn't quite fit, but it helped inspire this fic (along with Ted's birthday.) I used the 3oh!3 version of this song, and if you hung around on 4shared, you can find it too.

And the first scene of this kind of sucks because I was cramping really bad at school while I was writing it. Erm, so it's not my best work.


I feel so unsure,
As I take your hand, and lead you to the dance floor
As the music dies (as the music dies),
There's something in your eyes;
Calls to mind a silver screen, and all its sad good-byes.

Ted was woken up by something warm and soft on his neck, a gentle pleasure that made his toes curl and sighs escape his lips. His eyelashes fluttered against his cheek briefly, right before his sleepy azure orbs were revealed.

Cody eased off his lover's neck, propping himself up on his arms, "Morning."

"And a good morning it is" Ted drawled, wrapping his arm around the younger man's lithe waist and pulling him flush. He captured those pouty lips for his own, kissing him for all he was worth.

The fresh morning light slipped through the hotel curtains, streaking across the floor and over the naked lovers. They kissed and moved against each other languidly, drinking up the lazy morning. So rare did they have a day off on the road, they wanted to take in every moment of it for themselves. Crimson splashed across the tan expanse of Cody's back, golden light bathing hay colored hair. It created quite the picture, a snapshot of serene. This would be the last time in a week either would feel so content, so happy. The sad part was…neither knew it yet.

But the time was fast approaching.

"Happy birthday, Teddy" Cody murmured.

Ted groaned, giving the younger man's hip a playful smack, "Shut up."

"Come on, man, you've hit the 2-7" Cody sat up, smiling brightly to expose his pearly whites and his cute little gap "You and Randy are getting close to thirty. You're mature, aged. Like wine."

"Like milk" Ted grumbled, shoving the brunette off him and rolling onto his side. Cody laughed at his friend, spooning up behind him and nuzzling the sensitive spot between those tan shoulder blades. He got a squirm, but not a protest against it. He nipped at the same spot, goosebumps cropping up in the wake of his hot breath.

"Today's going to be awesome" Cody sat up a bit, kissing the blonde's smooth shoulder affectionately.

Ted's brow creased, but he didn't speak up.

"I got us a reserve at this bar in town" Cody continued, clearly pleased with himself "Cena, Randy, JoMo, and Jake are coming. We're going to get good and plastered. And when Cena passes out, 'cause you know he'll be the first, we'll draw giant penis on his forehead. We'll take a few pictures and call it a night."

Ted mentally swooned at the thought. Hanging out with the guys all night, chewing the fat, bringing up embarrassing times, getting smashed. A cool beer in his hand and his boy tucked into his hip, Cena cheering them on to make out (as he always did once he got a certain amount of drunk) before Randy would just grab him and kiss him to make him shut up.

It sounded perfect.

"You know, Baby-boy, that sounds amazing" Ted turned over on his back, teeth raking over his lower lip "But, uh…I can't."

"What?" Cody wasn't expecting this, he sat up a bit and peered down at the man "Don't you feel good?"

"I, uh, feel fine."

"We don't have to do anything" the younger man tried not to pout, he thought he had done so well "Whatever you wanna do, man."

"I promised Kristen I'd spend the day with her" Ted admitted, guilt laced in his voice "I can't be back until late tonight."

Cody took a moment to process this information. His face hardened, his lips pressing into a thin white line. Rage boiled in his belly, his cheeks flushing at the attempt not to scream in frustration. Fuckin' Kristen, Ted's wife. God, he hated that fact, and that damn woman! He hated that Ted was so afraid of coming out, of accepting their love. Even though they'd been lovers for years, before Kirsten and every other fleeting girlfriend that happened between their spats, Ted had been severely pressured by his father to get married. Ted was a daddy's boy at heart, and had given in for his father's approval. Thus, Kristen entered their lives.

For two horrible weeks, they were torn from each other. They hadn't quite ended it, but many tears were shed and several sleepless nights were had. Eventually, they both broke under the second wave of pressure and turned their pure love into a behind-locked-doors affair. It burned and tore at Cody, but he found it to just deny that Ted was even married to the snotty woman.

Every night he lied to himself, but no one could deny what went on in the ring. There it was all laid out, the chemistry between them clear. As soon as they were backstage, they could never stop from jumping into each other's arms and making out against the closest wall.

And when Kristen came into the picture, she immediately ruined everything. They couldn't spend every holiday together. Every time they got a vacation at the same time, the 'bitch' would demand Ted come home and do something frivolous with her. She took so much of their time away, and every time Ted was forced to go, Cody couldn't stop himself from throwing a bit of a fit.

But Ted had broke already and he was trapped in a marriage, he had obligations.

Now Kristen was getting in the way again.

"Baby?" Ted inquired softly, scared of the sudden silence.

"You're…going to spend the whole day…with her?" Cody stated evenly.

God, he hated it when Cody's voice got all icy like that. He hated admitting that he had to do things with Kirsten, especially when his bratty little wife had made it quite clear Cody was not invited.

"And my family" Ted admitted, hoping the bed would open up and swallow him "She's throwing this big party-"

"It's your birthday, you do what you want" Cody cut him off, not wanting to hear it.

The blonde winced, "It's not like I want to go, Codes-"

"Whatever" Cody snapped. He forced his tone to a low pitch, forced his features to soften as he laid down along Ted's side again. If Ted was going to leave, he was sure as hell going to leave with the Rhodes approval all over his body. He splayed his hand along Ted's firm pec, smirking when it flexed under his touch.

"When do you have to go, Teddy-bear?" Cody murmured, leaning down to nip at his friend's strong jaw.

Ted glanced at the clock, "In about an hour."

Cody growled in frustration, rolling out of bed and throwing his hands up in the air, "Fine. Just fine, Ted. Go! Be with your wife. If you feel like having some real fun when you get back, I'll be here. Cause you know that bitch doesn't want me anywhere near you! You just love giving her what she wants!"

Cody stormed into the bathroom during his little tirade, making sure to slam the door as hard as he possibly could. He put his back against it, sighing heavily and letting his head fall back. He concentrated on his breathing, on the cool painted wood against his bare skin. He snatched a pair of Ted's boxers off the floor, slipping them up his legs to cover himself properly. He listened to Ted shuffling around the room, getting dressed and packing a bag. It was almost painful, but he knew it had to be done. Ted had an obligation to that bitch he married, and nothing could change that.

Cody slid to the floor, sniffling pathetically and putting his chin on his knees. He kept his arms curled tight around his chest, drawing his long body up into a ball. He listened as Ted approached the door, felt the vibrations against his skin as the blonde lightly knocked on the door.

"Baby, I gotta go" Ted's voice was apologetic, Cody could almost see the remorse on his face "Aren't you gonna come out here and give me a hug and kiss goodbye?"

I'm never gunna dance again,
Guilty feet have got no rhythm. (Ahaha!)
Though it's easy to pretend,
I know your not a fool. (You know I ain't a fool, girl!)
I shoulda known better than to cheat a friend,
And waste the chance that I'd been given. (Ahaha!)
So I'm never gunna dance again, (yep)
The way I danced with you.

Cody shook his head, refusing to speak in his own little protest. He felt Ted's hand rest against the door, fingernails barely scratching the surface. A soft thud felt like Ted had rested his forehead against the surface. The pathetic mental picture of that tugged at his heart, but this was how he objected to these kinds of things. Silence. Childish silence.

"I love you, Cody" Ted stated sincerely, softly.

Cody kept his top teeth clamped down over his lip.

Ted sighed loudly, and the brunette pouted as he listened to Ted walk away. The door opened and closed, signaling that Cody was now alone in the hotel room.

"I love you too, Ted" Cody whispered to himself, burying his face in his knees.

And today had started off so perfect, too.

*~P~R~I~C~E~L~E~S~S~*

John, Randy, Morrison, and Jake sat at the lunch table together. Everyone had been working out hardcore all morning, and Cody had asked if they could all lunch together. They took a table at the far corner of the hotel cafeteria, all of them devouring their plates.

"So…where's Ted?" Randy asked, raising a brow at his boy.

Cody picked at his chicken, spearing a large piece and shoving it into his mouth.

John made a face over the rim of his Gatorade, "I know that look."

Hager did a double-take, "Yeah, where'th Ted at?"

"Ted's a little busy today" Cody replied tightly, pushing another bite around his plate "He was summoned by his little woman."

Randy groaned, nearly dropping his fork, "I hate that bitch."

"Yeah? Well, join the club" Cody grumbled, scooping up a bite of mashed potatoes but putting his fork back down before it got halfway to his mouth.

Morrison nudged him gently, "I hope you're not too torn up, Codes."

Cody smiled at the genuine concern, "I'm fine, JoMo. It'll just be like it always is. He'll come back, grovel a bit, and then give me a new comic. It's kinda cute, and I love it when he pouts. Serves him right."

Cody started eating again, comforted by the thought of having Ted on his knees at the end of the night and all his again. But he didn't see Jake raise his head from his sub, chewing thoughtfully and swallowing his mighty bite. His brow was drawn in confusion for a second, but his lips formed an 'o' when he realized just what was going on.

"Right" Jake spoke up "I forgot! You're the other woman."

Cody scoffed, ready to make a sarcastic comment when it all crashed down on him. He choked, his fork dropping loudly to his plate. He froze all over, an icy shiver going up his spine. He stared wide-eyed at nothing in particular, lips parted in a gape.

He was the other woman.

Time can never mend (oooh),
Careless whispers of a good friend
To the heart and mind (to the heart and mind)
,Ignorance is kind (kind).
There's no comfort in the truth
Pain is all you'll find.

Cody had always thought of Kristen as the other woman, the one getting in the way of his and Ted's love. She was the one that was wrong with this equation, the one cutting slices of their 'together' time. He was always going back to her to keep her quiet, keep her satisfied enough not to make a big scene. But…but they were the ones gone all the time. Ted was on the road…with him. Ted and Kristen were married, legally together with documents and everything. She was the one with DiBiase tagged at the end of her name, the one who went to the DiBiase house and held Ted's hand. She was the one in the wedding picture, the one who wore the matching ring Ted only forced himself to wear when he left.

Ted kept coming back to him, offering candy or comic books or video games so he wouldn't get upset and make a scene. He was the one Ted fucked on the road, the one warming his bed every single night. The one who was only around with Kristen wouldn't or couldn't come, the one seen as just an extra special friend.

Ted took off his wedding ring for him, Cody Rhodes.

The other woman.

Cody stood up so forcefully he knocked his chair over, refusing to utter a word before he stormed off. At first he walked rather calmly, then his step quickened, and he broke out into a full run when Randy called after him. Blinded by his sudden tears, Cody pushed into the men's bathroom and stumbled right into the wall. He pressed himself against the bleached white tile, his cheeks and palms soaking up the chill as his blood rushed hot.

His legs gave out beneath him, his face burying itself in his arms before he started sobbing.

"Cody!" Randy burst into the bathroom, his boyfriend close behind him. He stopped just inside, taking in the scene his boy made. He turned, giving John a look. Cena nodded, shutting the bathroom door firmly between him and the two Legacy members.

"Cody?" Randy walked over, kneeling down beside him. Cody was crying full on now, young body shuddering violently with each heart-wrenching sound. Orton pulled his boy into his arms, grunting when those strong arms wrapped around his waist and squeezed.

Cody buried his face deep in the older man's shirt, glad to have the powerfully built form cradling him so easily as he broke down. He tried to choke out an explanation, but his chest was constricted by his sorrow and it was difficult to breath past his wailing.

"Cody, man. Cody!" Randy had no idea what had set the young man off, but he held him close just the same "Come on, man, what's wrong? What happened?"

"I-I-I…" Cody swallowed thickly, eyes clenched shut and expression hidden in the dark Affliction shirt "I'm the other woman."

Randy's brow creased, "Codes…"

"I-I'm the other woman!" Cody screamed, a soul-searing woe in his tone "Look what's he's made me! He loved me first…he l-loved me first, and she ruined everything!"

Randy held his boy close, almost rocking him, as Cody's hoarse voice dropped to a hushed whisper.

"…it wasn't supposed to be this way…I'm the one he loved…oh God, I'm the other woman…"

*~P~R~I~C~E~L~E~S~S~*

I'm never gunna dance again,
Guilty feet have got no rhythm. (Ahaha!)
Though it's easy to pretend,
I know your not a fool. (You know I ain't a fool, girl!)
I shoulda known better than to cheat a friend,
And waste the chance that I'd been given. (Ahaha!)
So I'm never gunna dance again, (yep)
The way I danced with you.

Ted knocked on his lover's door at almost midnight, a little nervous but mostly hopeful. He had the duffle bag at his feet and Left For Dead was clutched in his hand. His heart skipped as he listened to the sleepy shuffle and the grumblings behind the door. He was never this excited to see Kristen, not even close. He knew the reason for that, he knew that Cody was the one for him. Kristen was just a hurdle, one that his boy was willing to ignore for the sake of their love.

For a small price, of course.

The door opened, revealing Cody looking at his most delectable. Sleep rumpled, dark lashes at half mast, his boxers riding low on his tempting hips. Ted wet his lips hungrily, eyes raking over his boy's form.

Cody perked up, "Teddy!"

Ted smiled at him, holding up the game, "Sorry about tonight but I brought you Left For Dead. Whatta ya say we power it up and-"

Ted found himself with his arms full of warm, sighing Cody. The hug was tight, desperate even. The blonde chuckled breathlessly and hugged back, pleased by this reaction. Cody was holding onto him like this was the last time they'd ever hug, memorizing every sensation.

"I missed you too, baby" Ted kissed the younger man's cheek, slowly pulling away.

Ted groaned, a fist burying itself in his gut. He doubled over, stumbling back a few feet and clutching at his belly. Once he caught his breath, he managed to lift his head and reveal his confused expression.

"What…the hell?"

Cody's features had hardened, he had been memorizing every moment of that loving hug.

Maybe it would get him through this.

"Did you have fun with your wife?' Cody hissed.

"Aw, baby, don't be like that" Ted begged breathlessly, getting his hand smacked away when he reached out for the other.

"I'm sick and tired of you crawling back to me smelling like cheap perfume and her kiss goodbye still on your mouth!" Cody barked, not caring about how bitchy he sounded "I'm through with this, Ted. It has to end."

Ted's heart clenched painfully, he had hoped it would never come down to this, "Cody, please don't do this. Ya know I love ya the most, that it'll always be you above all else with me."

Cody steeled himself against the heartache, "If you loved me, you wouldn't have turned me into your whore."

Ted shook his head frantically, trying to deny it all, "Yer not my-"

"Yes I am!" Cody all but screamed, exploding "You come back to me in the middle of the night after spending all day with her. You're married to her, Ted, not me! I was ok with this when I thought she meant nothing to you, but now…now I'm not so sure."

"Codes, listen" Ted laid his hands tenderly over the young man's biceps "She's just a friend, at best. She's there to keep the media away and my dad off my back, ya know that. It's you I love, baby."

"Talking isn't going to fix this. No more gifts or money or any of that petty shit" Cody threw the blonde's hands away, sad determination on his face "I'm not going to be your dirty little secret anymore."

"No, please-"

"Yes" Cody drew himself to his full height, gathering every scrap of his dignity he had "We've been together since I was sixteen, man, and I love you. Seriously, more than anything, and you know I'd do anything for you. But I can't do this anymore. It's too much, it hurts too much. I was here first, and I'm not going to share you. I shouldn't have to."

Cody sighed at Ted's kicked-puppy look, he turned his cheek on him, "It's time you chose, Ted. It's her…or me. That's it. You can't have us both."

Ted gaped at him, unsure what to say.

"Don't come back until you've made a decision."

Cody slammed the door shut between them, refusing to make a sound until he was sure Ted walked off. He all but collapsed to the floor, sobbing. A little voice in his head reminded him that you always set loose the things you loved the most, and if you were meant to have them, then it'd come back.

Ted would be back, he had to.

*~P~R~I~C~E~L~E~S~S~*

Slow down,
You know you're moving too fast
You know that I don't dance, but you insist to take my hands;
And to the beat, that move our feet, and everyone is watching me,
And I don't dance no more.

The first week, Cody was calm and collected. He went along with his head held high, nose in the air, proving that he was above that of secret affairs. He was a little embarrassed at first, because he realized very quickly the entire roster knew what a whore he was for Ted. All this time he thought they were this big idol couple, and now he knew all those smiles were only there to hide the mocking laughter.

So for that first week, Cody didn't let anything bother him.

Randy stood in front of his protégée, the younger man lifting the heavy barbell up and down rhythmically to the set of almost 150 (much too heavy for someone his size.)

"Cody…"

"Yes, Randy?" Cody grunted.

"Where's Ted?"

Cody didn't even pause, but his lips did thin to a solid white slash across his face, "I don't know what you mean, man."

"Ted's been gone for almost a week now" Randy stated conversationally, though he was trying desperately to rein in his anger "I was hoping, as his boyfriend, you would know just where the fuck he is."

Cody scoffed bitterly, keeping his eyes on the mirror and lifting way above his head, "I'm not his fucking boyfriend."

Randy's poison blue eyes widened fractionally, "Since when?"

"Since yesterday."

"Since his birthday?"

"He spent the whole day with Kristen and didn't give a damn about me" Cody bitched, face twisted in his bitterness "I know what he likes, I know that he hates parties and family get-togethers. I know he wanted to spend the night with me and you guys, he just wanted to get drunk and forget he's another year older. That's how he is. But instead, he gave into that bitch and went out all day with her."

Randy sighed heavily, "If you know he wanted to stay with us, then why are you so mad?"

"Because he didn't stay anyways" Cody hissed "He went with her."

Randy almost snapped, "Isn't it enough that-!"

"Hey boys" John walked over, panting softly with a towel around his neck "What's going on here?"

"Cody apparently broke up with Ted on his birthday" Randy growled, eyes still locked on the younger man.

"Really now?" John raised his eyebrows, shocked.

"I gave him an ultimatum" Cody brought down the weight, chest straining beneath his sweat soaked muscle shirt "It's either her…or me. He has a decision to make, and I told him to get lost until he made it."

"You're a cold bitch."

Cody nearly dropped the weight onto the holder, whipping around and glaring at his big brother figure, "Excuse me?"

"You heard me" Randy narrowed his eyes "You know how much Ted loves you, how much he worships you. But no, you had to fucking push it. God, Cody…you just don't know when you fucking have it made, do you?"

"I had it made?" Cody scrunched up his nose "How do you figure that?"

"Ted loved you more than his wife" Randy pointed out, almost exasperated now with the younger man "You got him all you wanted, he gave you anything you asked for, and it kept the media off your back. His wife was the perfect cover, and now…"

Randy ran a hand over his face, grumbling.

"Go cool off, baby" John whispered, The Viper nodded and went to start his leg reps. Cena turned back to Cody, who was still glaring and pouting.

"I'm right, aren't I?"

"I dunno, kid" John patted Cody on the shoulder, sympathetic "But I hope this is what you wanted. I hope you've done what you truly wanted. And I hope…I hope he comes back to you."

Cody watched John walk away with a gaping mouth.

*~P~R~I~C~E~L~E~S~S~*

And I ain't leaving my apartment 'til it's after evening,
Bars are closing down, and every model in the pool hall's drinking.
I turn the juke box on,
To play my favorite song,
Where we sing along;
I don't dance no more.

Ted sat alone at the bar, downing beer-after-shot. He couldn't exactly what town he was in, but he knew he was in his home state. He gazed blankly at the rows of alcohol in the back of he bar, not really seeing anything. The bartender looked worriedly at him, but kept serving him whatever he asked for.

Ted wasn't sure how long he had been drunk now. He was a man without a horse, so to speak. His one real love in life had spurned him, sent him off alone to make the hardest decision of his life. He could've been fired for all he knew. Maybe Vince had got tired of his ass and just booted him, and when he finally decided to go back…it would just been too late.

Ted gazed down at his beer, swilling the dregs around.

How had his life come to this?

Oh, right, because he tried to fuck over his best friend.

Cody was a smart guy, no matter how he acted. Eventually Ted knew Cody would realize their situation, he would realize that he was the other woman in their relationship and that would be it. But…is it so wrong that Ted wanted his lover to remain oblivious forever? It wasn't out of some deep-seated love for Kristen, it was just because she kept everyone away that wanted to hurt him. His father was very conservative and loved the idea of a blonde-haired-blue-eyed wife and 2.5 kids. Though DiBiase Sr. had never really done it that way, he wanted and expected the best out of his kids.

While Brett was as gay as a three dollar bill, Mike lived up to his father's expectations.

So, by rights, Ted had to live up to them too.

But Cody was everything he wanted or needed from life! He didn't need kids! Well, maybe adoption or surrogate mother down the line, but way down the line when their careers were almost over and they had money to coast on. And there's another thing, Cody never gave a shit about his money. Kristen did, that was for fucking sure. She always wanted something, some brand new and shiny something that took a chunk out of his paycheck. He liked getting Cody gifts, small things that made his boy smile and his eyes dance.

Candy, video games, things that could be shared between them.

Kristen wanted cruises and cars.

But while Cody was his life, breath, heart, soul and everything in between…Kristen was his safety harness. No one ever questioned how much time he spent with Cody while he was married to Kristen. No one followed them, no one accused them of being gay, and no one tried to blackmail him (which actually happened to Shawn and Hunter once, but that guy disappeared really fast.)

While Randy and John had the disguise of being rivals, Cody and Ted had no such luxury. They were always in the ring together, defending each other, had each other's backs. They were always fucking touching and neither could help themselves.

But his beloved wouldn't touch him until he chose, and he was getting damn lonely.

Down the bar, a man in dark jeans and raven-pitch hair was trying to pick up this small blonde in a tight blue dress, but she wasn't having it. She walked right away from him, leaving him rather lonely as well. Ted felt himself sympathizes with the sighing man, poor dude.

An even cuter blonde man walked up to him, tapped him on the shoulder, and asked him if he could buy him a drink.

The ravenette accepted, and they made their way to the back of the bar together.

Ted's hearted ached in jealousy, and he knew he had made a decision.

Tonight the music seems so loud. (Yo, lets get outa here.)
I wish that we could lose this crowd. (C'mon!)
Baby, it's better this way; (Just you and me...)
We hurt each other with the things we wanna say.

Ted got up off the stool easily enough, throwing down a large bill before strolling out of the beer. On the way out, he passed a few couples. He pulled out his keys and his cellphone, unlocking his car and slipping into the driver's side. He sighed heavily and leant back into the leather, letting his neck rest against the smooth surface. His eyes flittered up to the mirror, finding his reflection staring back at him.

Ted bit the side of his lip, reaching up and adjusting it so he could see his entire face, "Hey man, we screwed things up. We…we gotta fix this, ok? It's gonna hurt, and it's gonna be hard. Do you think we can do it?"

He nodded, and his reflection nodded back.

Ted dropped back into the seat, flipping open his cell and dialing a way too familiar number.

One thought went through his head as he listened to line ring, //I wish it didn't have to happen like this, Cody. I hope it doesn't hurt you too much.//

Someone picked up, and a cheery hello was poured into his ear.

"Hey Kris" a slight smile came to the blonde's face "Yeah, I know, a phone call and a visit in one day. I'm on the ball, huh?"

She made a joke that really wasn't that funny, but he gave a little laugh anyways.

"Krissy, listen, I'm a few miles from home…" Ted trailed off "Yeah, I'm serious. I'm gonna come home for a week."

He wet his lips, watching the shadow pay inside his car from the semi-busy traffic that was going on in the street. This was hard, his heart was nearly choking it from how far up in his throat it was lodged.

"Because, Kris, we need 'ta talk" Ted admitted "There's somethin' I need to tell ya. It's about Cody, and yer not going to like it."

Ted's heart broke at her words, "I know. I think it's about time too."

We could have been so good together; (Woo!)We could have lived this dance forever. (Yeah, sing it, boy.)But now who's gunna dance with me?Please stay!

*~P~R~I~C~E~L~E~S~S~*

I'm never gunna dance again,
Guilty feet have got no rhythm. (Ahaha!)
Though it's easy to pretend,
I know your not a fool. (You know I ain't a fool, girl!)

The second week, Cody was a complete and utter mess. He was running around like a chicken with his head cut off, trying to find out if anyone had seen or heard from Ted. He called Ted Sr. and Brett, but nothing from either. Ted had just dropped off the face of the earth, and it was scaring him.

Cody left a breathless message into his lover's answering machine after running up a flight of stairs, You fucking bastard! I h-hope your happy, I'm a mess without you. Where the fuck are you!?

But Cody only ever got the answering machine when he called. He would've felt absolutely horrible about this, but he soon learned that everyone was getting the cold shoulder. Randy was especially bitter about this, for he had called in an attempt to bring him back and ignore the hissy fit Cody had thrown.

John had to be the one to say it, since no one else would.

"Has anyone called Kristen and asked her where he is?"

He got rather nasty looks from both Cody and Randy at this.

Shane approached Cody after the second missed RAW, very unhappy and very agitated, "So, where is he?"Cody played dumb, "Where's who?"

Shane's jaw ticked, "Where's DiBiase?"

"Oh, him" Cody played with the hem of his trunks, wondering where the fuck Randy was. The first time he needed the hovering bastard and he wasn't around. They both know how much he hated dealing with the McMahon's, they scared the hell out of him.

"Ted's…sick."

"He's sick?" Shane raised a brow.

"Yeah, man, sick" Cody waved his hand through the air "You know how the flu goes around this time of year. He's just feeling a little down; sore muscles, nausea, coughing, the whole nine-yards. He'll bounce back soon enough."

"Really?" Shane was unconvinced "Because I heard no one's seen him in two weeks."

"That's just not true."

"Yes it is."

"…ok, and if it is?"

"You tell DiBiase that if he isn't in the live event on Thursday, I'm going to personally shove my foot so far up his ass-!" Shane began angrily, but quickly composed himself and put on a smile "Get him back, ok?"

"Uh, yes sir."

Cody officially broke Tuesday night when Ted ignored three of his calls in a row. He threw his cellphone across John and Randy's hotel room, curling himself up into a ball on their spare bed. He tried not to cry, but it was hard. Everything ached, and he felt like he was going to get ill at any moment. All the guilty and regret had built up.

Randy came over, sitting down behind the younger man and sitting him up, "Cody, if you don't calm down, you're going to make yourself sick."

"I-I don't care" Cody choked, letting himself be sat up and cradled into the older man's body "I miss my Teddy, Randy, I miss him so much!"

Randy wanted to snap at him that it was his own fault, but he held his boy close as he cried into his chest. How could you hate something so innocent? All Cody had wanted was to be Ted's single love, and no one could really blame him for that.

"It's ok, baby, let it out" Randy whispered softly, letting the brunette bury his face into his neck and sob his little heart out. He kept him wrapped up in his embrace the entire time, his cheek resting in dark hair. The poor thing, he was seriously losing it.

"I thought h-he'd pick me" Cody's lisp was more pronounced now, his tears making it harder for him to control his inflection "I thought he loved me more. I-I was wrong, he went to her again! I know it!"

That could very well be true, but Randy didn't want to make it worse.

After a few more minutes, Cody started to calm down. He kept himself curled into his 'big brother', tear tracks down his young face as he looked at nothing in particular on the wall.

"I know what would make you feel better" Randy offered "We should go out tonight, you and our little group of friends. We'll get good and smashed and just let loose, ok?"

"I don't want to" Cody muttered.

John came over, sitting on the bed and gazing at the younger man, "Come on, man. You deserve this, dontcha think? A nice night out. We won't think about anything bad for a few hours, and tomorrow we'll deal with everything else."

Cody chewed his lower lip, and soon nodded in agreement.

"Ok" John patted the boy's leg, getting a small smile "Now go wash your face and put on something nice. I know this place near here who doesn't give a fuck who you fuck as long as you don't do it on the floor. I wanna see just how much I can make Randy blush."

"John!" Randy protested, obviously not liking this idea.

But Cody was laughing again, and that's what mattered.

I shoulda known better than to cheat a friend,
And waste the chance that I'd been given. (Ahaha!)
So I'm never gunna dance again, (yep)
The way I danced with you.

*~P~R~I~C~E~L~E~S~S~*

Randy invited Morrison out with them as well, who brought along his boyfriend. The Miz was kind of tired, but he was glad to be along. And he was some comic relief for the evening, anyways. They took a booth in the back of this club, the drinks flowing freely thanks to Cena's credit card. They were trying to take his mind off everything, but he was a determinedly sulky thing.

Cody ran his fingers around the rim of his last shot, the slick edge easy beneath his fingertip. He cradled his chin in his other hand, gazing down into the amber liquid with glazed cerulean eyes. Everything was just so wrong with this. He should have Ted with him. He didn't feel like a fifth wheel, but having drinks with his friends wasn't the same without having Ted's strong arm around his waist and his sweet drawl in his ear reminding him not to drink too much unless he wanted to embarrass himself.

And now that (dance again) you're gone... (Ahaha!)
(To pretend.)
(You know I ain't a fool, girl!)
And now that (cheat a friend) your gone...
(You can't cheat me.) (Ahaha!)(Yep.)

But it was a teasing reminder, for on several occasions he had ended up shirtless and dancing with one too many drinks in his tummy.

Honestly? He was considering going home right now, curl up and die right in his own bed. But the thought of his own bed without Ted warming it physically hurt. He loved it when Ted would come with him on trips home, to have his presence in the house made it what it was. Cody was afraid that if he went back without Ted, the air would be too stale and the rooms too hollow to bare on his own.

John saw it coming first, and he elbowed Randy lightly, "Dude, look."

Randy looked up, eyes narrowing at the man weaving himself through the crowd, "Huh."

John glanced between the approaching man and Cody, "What should we do?"

Randy did what he could, he took another shot to calm himself, "They're big boys, John."

The man stopped in front of the table, dark shades hiding his eyes and a flattering crimson button-down accentuating his muscles and exposing the tan flesh of his neck. He reached out, touching Cody's shoulder gently. Cody raised his head but didn't look at him, ready to shoot him down.

"How 'bout a dance?"

"Fuck off, man, I am sooo not in the mood for-" Cody looked up, words cut off and eyes widening when he saw who it was "Teddy?"

Ted nodded, "Come on."

Cody's nose scrunched up as he tried to figure out if he was more relieved or pissed, "Why the hell should I?"

"Because" Ted replied simply.

You can't really fight that kind of logic.

And now that (dance again) your gone... (Ahaha!)
(To pretend.)(You know I ain't a fool, girl!)

Cody stood, taking his lover's warm hand and let himself be led out onto the dance floor. It was just crowded enough to give them some privacy, and the song changed to something a little slower once they were finally lost in the sea of bodies. Couples around them slow-grinded into each other, or their limbs were so closely wrapped that one couldn't tell where the other began.

Cody found his hips taken in those strong hands, pulled forward until they were pressed flush together. He wrapped his arms around the older man's neck on instinct, though a part of him hated that he was so well-trained. He would always melt into Ted's embrace, he would always respond when that body he loved so much moved against his own, and he would always cling to him when he was afraid that everything was going to fall apart.

"I went and saw Kristen" Ted spoke into his ear, his drawl cutting through the music playing through the speakers and pulsing through the floor.

Cody sneered, "Oh really?"

"I talked with her…about everything" Ted replied "I told her about us, and just how long I'd been cheating on her. I made my choice."

Cody's heart hurt when Ted admitted it, he had been cheating with him.

"I bet you did" Cody choked down on his tears, refusing to loose it here of all places "And I bet your little wifey just threw her arms around you and forgave you, huh?"

"Not when I told her I wanted a divorce" Ted knocked the sunglasses off his face, letting them fall away and smack against the floor. Cody pulled away a bit and gaped at his lover's beautiful face, now marred by a painful black eye and a small golden bruise on his jaw.

"Oh God, Teddy" slipped past his lips on a breathless whimper.

"She was pissed as hell" Ted explained, a small smile quirking up his lips "That little thing is a firecracker, ya know? But she agreed to a quick divorce when I gave her what she wanted."

Cody chewed the side of his lip, guilt shading his voice when he had to ask, "What…did she want?"

"Half my stuff."

Cody's tears came back for a whole other reason, "Shit, Ted! You didn't have to do that…not for me. I didn't want you hurt, or for that bitch to take your money just to keep quiet!"

"Shh, Baby-boy" Ted leaned in, brushing a delicate kiss over the younger man's cheek "It's ok. It's what I wanted, what I shoulda done a long time ago. You told me to make a decision and I did, because I love ya more than anything else. It's you I'm worried about."

"Me?" Cody whispered, drawn in again and pressed close to the blonde. He rested his cheek on Ted's broad shoulder, soft lips brushing his ear.

"If I had this façade, it kept you from getting hurt" Ted murmured "You're just so young…and you've got all this potential. Being gay in this career? You've gotta be so careful, and if I had a wife…it kept all of those people who'd want to hurt you off your back."

Cody's heart broke at the tenderness, //I don't deserve this.//

"If you still want to keep it a secret, it's ok" Ted told him "But if you think you can handle it-"

"I can handle it" Cody pulled back, cupping is lover's face and examining his bruises "Does it hurt?"

Ted smiled, "No."

"Good" Cody stole a kiss right there in a crowd of people, tasting his lover for the first time in two weeks. It was like breathing again, and he'd been living under water all this time. It was rather chaste, but their tongues moved smoothly and their lips sealed in a promise.

"I love you" Cody whispered into the blonde's mouth.

"Love you too, Baby-boy" Ted pulled away just enough to give him a soft peck "Just. You."

They kissed again, wrapping themselves tight around each other.

Randy, John, and Morrison watched this little scene.

"It's about damn time" JoMo stated, raising his glass "To love."

"Hells yeah" Randy agreed, toasting with him on it "To finally getting everything right after fucking it all up."

"That bitch was cheating them of this" John threw his head at the boys "They coulda had this all along."

"But their stronger now, and the next hurdle won't seem so big" Randy stated, poking his boyfriend in the shoulder "Remember when we started? We were both married."

John conceded, taking up his glass and toasting with them again, "To careless whispers."

And now that (cheat a friend) your gone... (You can't cheat me.) (Ahaha!)


Er, ok, that song didn't line up as much as I thought it would. Whatever, I hate Kristen, screw her and the horse she rode in on. Anyway, sorry if some of the song-injects aren't in the right place, this is a very long story and that was a very long song. I recommend it. And as someone who prefers dance songs, that's actually saying something.

Love it? Leave it?

Happy birthday Teddy!!! (like he's reading this or something) And, God, wouldn't that be awkward? Oh well, happy birthday to all the muse!Ted's out there!