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haunted (by the ghost of you)

Chapter Text

There was a shift in the air, a shift that Eddie couldn’t seem to place as he wandered around his house for the millionth time. One thousand, seven hundred and forty one days had been the exact same, the routine never changing. Now, though, now something was different and it was all coming from the big white moving van that had pulled up outside his house.

Never in the (almost) five years that Eddie had been no longer living, had anyone ever moved into 27 Elm Street, Derry. Which could only mean one thing, that finally his mother had gone and sold the house. The thought made a sick feeling pool in Eddie’s stomach, a feeling he was all too aware off. One would think that now he was no longer breathing, he wouldn’t be plagued with those kinds of feelings.

No such luck.

Yes, yes, yes. I arrived safe and I’ve got everything I need. The house is perfect. It’s in more of a secluded area so I guess if anything weird happens no-one here will really notice?”

The new voice filtered in through the hall and up the stairs, making Eddie flinch and merge into the wall. Immediately, he felt extremely stupid, it wasn’t like this new man could see him. No-one could see him, not in life or in death. He was just invisible.

At that moment, something moved around his feet and Eddie shot his head down to find the source. He let out a noise and backed up as the black cat crouched into a pounce, hissing at him. Did the cat know he was here? Perhaps it did, considering that animals were most inclined to see things that humans could not.

“Hades!” The new voice called from down the stairs and the cat backed up, eyes never leaving Eddie’s form until it reached the stop of the stairs and disappeared. As the cat did so, Eddie let out a breath he didn’t need to hold and merged through the wall and into his room.

Suddenly all the weird visits to his house made sense. The blonde haired lady who brought men in to assess the house, the paperwork she had filled out in the kitchen. She was setting it up to sell the house, and she had apparently succeeded as this stranger was unpacking boxes in what used to be his living room.

Still, Eddie felt a strange connection to the stranger and the urge to get just a little bit closer over weighed his fear of the fact that he was no longer alone in his solitude. He floated into the air just a little and merged through the door, taking his sweet time moving down the stairs. He took a peek into the living room where the man was hunched over a pile of boxes, surrounded by large, creepy looking books.

Maybe it was the fact that Eddie had little to no life when he was living. Maybe it was the fact that all he had ever known was his mother, and the two brothers that would deliver the paper to his house until they were too old for that. Maybe it was neither of those things, but Eddie’s curiosity was high and he wanted to find out about this man, his cat and his books.

From the corner of the room, in the dark, Eddie watched with curious eyes. He watched as the man talked to the cat, Hades, and unpacked more of the large dusty books. He watched as he picked up his phone and ordered in a pizza, and he watched as he pulled out his credit card, name clearly written on the top. Richie Tozier.

It was later on that night that Eddie stepped out from his space. Richie had passed out on the couch, the pizza box left open on the coffee table, crusts abandoned for the cat to feast on. He edged a little closer, moving around the table to get a closer look at the book. The cat, luckily, was too busy eating to notice he had gotten closer and Eddie looked down at the markings, closing his eyes and trying to open the book using his mind.

Except it didn’t work. Confusion spread over Eddie’s face and he tried again, his time a little harder but received the same results. With a low growl, he tried once more, but instead of opening the book he knocked the pizza box off the table instead, the cat letting out a loud meow.

“Shit!” Richie jumped up, being awoken from his sleep and Eddie jumped all the way back into the darkness. “Hades, what have I told you about eating my leftovers?”

The cat, Hades, ignored Richie’s orders and continued to star at the shadows in which Eddie was hiding. Unable to help himself, Eddie started talking to the cat, hoping that by some miracle, it could hear him. “I’m not dangerous. I swear-”

Eddie had barely gotten a few words out before a loud crash broke him off and he looked up, his eyes locking onto Richie’s, who was staring with wide eyes in his direction. “Who’s there?”

It was clear that RIchie could hear him, but there was still the question of whether or not he could see him. No-one had been able to see Eddie before, or hear him for that matter, but this man seemed to hold that ability. Was he a psychic? What he some sort of clairvoyant? He backed himself further up into the corner of the room, but Richie seemed to follow him.

“I can see you, you know?” Richie questioned and Eddie felt himself freeze up in shock and fear. “Who are you and what are you doing in my house?”

Eddie wasn’t sure what possessed him to respond to Richie, but he did, his voice coming out in a quiet whisper, “Technically, this is my house. I was here first.”

He expected Richie to jump in shock, or run away in fear of a stranger being in his home, never mind a ghost. What he didn’t expect was for him to cross his arms over his chest and let out a chuckle. “Looks like the landlord did us dirty then, considering I’m paying rent here too.” He met Eddie’s eyes from across the room and he had to stop himself from shrinking back into the wall. “Who are you?”

Instead of answering Richie’s question, Eddie bantered back with him, the interaction foreign but a little fun all the while, “I don’t pay rent.”

Richie stepped a little closer to Eddie and he did back up this time so he was completely pressed against the wall behind him, without falling through it. “Who are you?” He asked again, but his voice wasn’t angry or agitated, it was soft and warm...almost inviting.

After a moment, Eddie moved off the wall, carefully taking a step closer to Richie, “My name is Eddie...and as I said I live here. I’ve lived here my whole life.”

“Eddie,” Richie repeated, smiling that same warm smile at him. “My name is Richie Tozier, and well, I live here too. Are you going to explain this to me or am I meant to be scared you’ll murder me in my sleep?”

“I’m not going to murder you,” Eddie assured him, quickly and without missing a beat. Even hearing the word caused a violent shiver to course through his body, memories flashing back in his mind that were still all to fresh. “But I can’t leave...I’m sorry.”

Richie paused at his words, as though he was thinking something over and eventually he nodded his head. “Alright Eddie, so you can’t leave. That’s okay.” Eddie frowned at why Richie was so calm about this whole situation. Did he know that Eddie was dead or was he just that nice? His questions were answered however, by Richie speaking up once more. “Did you die here, Eddie? Are you a ghost?”

Ah. So Richie wasn’t just nice. He knew exactly why Eddie was in this house when he wasn’t meant to be. Still one question remained, how did Richie figure it out so quickly? “I don’t...how did you know that?”

“It’s not that hard to figure out. You say you live here, but can’t leave. No-one actually knows your here, and you have no shadow.” Richie listed off and Eddie looked down at his feet, where a part of him was standing in the moonlight and true to Richie’s word, there was no shadow. “Oh, and I’m a warlock.”

That caught Eddie off guard and he shot his head back up, moving out from the corner even more. He had heard about people with magic before, but he was always convinced that it wasn’t real. Apparently, he was wrong about that. “You have magic? Like in Harry Potter?”

Another chuckle passed Richie’s lips and he rubbed a hand over the back of his neck. “Kind of, we don’t have wands or anything like that. Spells mainly come from books.” At those words, Eddie finally had an answer for what the mysterious book was that had been on the table in the living room. “I’m not exactly the best at it either, that’s why I’m here, so I can get better.” He stepped even closer, so they were only arms length away from one another. “It’s nice to meet you Eddie.”

“It’s nice to meet you too,” Eddie answered after a while, a very faint smile appearing on his lips. “I guess you can stay, as long as you don’t make too much noise. It would be nice to have some company around here.”

Richie laughed and nodded his head, “Well, that does seem fair. Don’t you worry Eds, I promise to be the best housemate ever!”

“Eds?” Eddie questioned quietly at the name that had slipped from Richie’s lips.

“A nickname for Eddie!” Richie explained. “You don’t mind do you?”

Even though Eddie was already a nickname for his full name, Edward, Eddie didn’t have it in him to tell Richie no. In fact, the thought of having a nickname made up by someone made Eddie’s small smile grow just that little bit more. “No, I guess I don’t mind all that much. Don’t make a habit of it though.”

Richie grinned, “I would never Eds. Don’t wanna upset my housemate on the first day now do I?” He reached forward to put a hand on Eddie’s shoulder, only for it to fall right through and land right by his side. “Oh shit, I’m sorry.”

It was a weird feeling, to have someone’s solid alive arm fall through his very dead, body. He looked up at Richie with a sad look on his face, all signs of a smile gone as he was brought back to the realisation of exactly how different he and Richie were. “It’s okay...I should have saw it coming.”

“No, no I’m sorry, honestly,” Richie assured Eddie, smiling down at him in the hopes of earning another smile. It worked, simply because Eddie realised Richie’s smile was infectious and there was no way he could notsmile around him. “Do you have a room?”

Eddie looked up properly at that and he nodded his head, “I do, it’s the first on the right.” They made their way to the stairs and when they reached the top, Eddie stopped outside of the door. “Here.”

“This is the door that wouldn’t open when I came to visit,” Richie pondered and Eddie nodded his head.

“I locked it, no-one can get in unless I let them. Everything is still the same as it was when I...was alive,” Eddie explained and opened the door so Richie could enter. “You can come in if you want.”

The place was dusty, extremely so since Eddie couldn’t actually clean it up but he didn’t want anyone finding this place, which was why he kept it hidden. It was the last place that he had to tether him to his life. He watched as Richie looked around, scanning over his books that he had read countless times when he was laying in the bed, unable to do anything else.

“This is your actual room,” Richie whispered, taking a seat on the bed. “I appreciate you sharing this with me, Eds. I can’t imagine how difficult this must be for you.”

It was extremely difficult, but for some reason, Richie’s presence killed some of the hurt that he was feeling. Maybe it was the fact that he was human, or that he had magic, but even thought Eddie wasn’t physically alive, he felt as though he was mentally alive.

“Its late,” Eddie eventually said after a while. “You should go to sleep. I’ll still be here in the morning. I don’t...disappear.”

Richie only paused for a moment before he nodded and stepped out of the room to head down the hall to the room that was, luckily, the spare and not his mothers. “Goodnight Eds.”

“Goodnight, Richie.”

Chapter Text

As the weeks passed, Richie and Eddie fell into a comfortable routine with one another. Eddie knew when Richie needed to be left alone, and Richie knew when Eddie was having his emotional moments. It was strange, two people who were so completely different had come together and so easily fallen into step with one another.

Even Eddie couldn’t ignore the way Richie brightened up even his gloomiest of days.

However, not even Richie could take Eddie’s mind off of the fact that he was dead and Richie was alive. A fact that put a pretty big wedge between them.

Richie said it didn’t bother him, that it was fun having a ghost for a roommate. Yet, Eddie could see the conflict in his eyes when Richie would reach over to touch him, only to remember he couldn’t, or the look of horror when he accidently throws something and it flies straight through Eddie.

They hadn’t had the talk yet. The talk being about how Eddie came to be dead in the first place. Sometimes, Eddie would think that Richie was going to ask, but then he could make a face and change the subject. He wasn’t even sure if he wanted to tell Richie the gruesome story of how he ended up where he was. It wasn’t something that Eddie felt anyone would want to here.

Yet, Eddie was aching to share it with someone, anyone who would listen as the recalled the years of torment that finally lead to his demise. His story wasn’t publicised, no-one even knew he existed really, and those who did assumed he had died in his youth. There were only two people who knew about Eddie’s death. Eddie himself and Eddie’s murderer.

Yes, that’s right. Murderer.

Suddenly, a loud bang echoed upstairs from below Eddie and he was startled out of his thoughts. Instead of using the stairs, he just let his body glide through the floor of his bedroom until he came out the other end, on the ceiling of the living room.

The sight that he was met with was not what Eddie had expected to find. Richie was on the floor, his whole face covered in black soot and his hair spiked up as though he had been electrocuted. He blinked a few times and then opened his mouth to ask if Richie was okay, but what came out instead was a giggle.

Richie’s head popped up at the sound and he reached his hand to wipe most of the soot from his face, “Are you laughing at me, Eds? After all we’ve been through, you’re laughing at me.”

“No-” Eddie giggled, another bout of giggles taking over as he finally settled on the living room floor. “What happened?”

With a chuckle, Richie sat up completely, leaning against the sofa and pointed to the book that was left discarded at his feet. “I told you Eds, I came out here to practice being a better warlock. So far, it’s not going so well.”

Eddie hovered over the book, staring at it with intent. He wasn’t able to physically touch objects, but with practice he found he could make them move using his mind. “What spell were you trying to use?”

“A cleaning spell,” Richie mumbled and Eddie hand to stop himself from laughing at the irony. Richie had been trying to do a cleaning spell, and had only ended up with more cleaning.

“Karma’s a bitch eh?” Eddie grinned, leaving the book be and hovering over to the couch. “I’m sure you’ll get it right with practice.”

Richie chuckled and ran his fingers through his messed up hair, “I hope you’re right Eds. I don’t know where I’m going wrong. All the other warlocks my age can do far more complicated spells than a cleaning spell!”

Eddie frowned and leaned just a little bit closer, “But why do you want to be like all the other warlocks? Then you would be all the same. Boring. You want to be different, Richie. Make your own mark.”

“Damn, the living is really missing out on some fantastic Eddie advice. You could be an advice columnist you know?” Richie made a move as to nudge Eddie’s side, but stopped himself just in time, his face twisting into the guilty look Eddie was all too familiar with.

That simple sentence and movement changed the whole mood of the room. What was a fun, lighthearted tone had now turned sad and morbid, but it had also brought Eddie’s thoughts back to where they were prior to Richie’s mishap. He looked down at his feet for a moment before looking back up at Richie, “Richie...I I want to tell you.”

Richie frowned, shifting slightly on the couch, “Tell me what Eds?”

Another pause, followed by a breath he didn’t need to take. “I want to tell you how I died.”

Eddie watched as Richie’s expression morphed from one of confusion to one of realisation. “Eds...are you sure?” He eventually whispered, but Eddie knew that he was listening. “You know that no matter what, it won’t change the way I look at you. You’re amazing, no matter what.”

If Eddie was able to, he would have cried, but he couldn’t so he simply nodded his head. “I want to tell you, but...it’s not a nice story.”

“Eddie...you’re dead. How could this ever have been a nice story?”

A strained laugh broke free from Eddie’s throat and he shrugged in agreement. “I guess you’re right. You uh, might wanna get comfortable.”

It took a while, Richie rushing off to partake in human needs before he returned, water in hand and some tissues in the other. Eddie gave him a look and he raised his hands up in defense, “I’m an emotional guy.” Richie was clearly trying to lighten the mood, but he must have caught on to Eddie’s stiff posture and he settled down. “I listening.”

“When I was little,” Eddie started, not looking at Richie. He wasn’t sure if he would be able to look at him for the majority of the tale. “When I was little my dad passed away. A car accident I think and it...it sent my mother insane, well, a little more insane than he was before. I was around the age of four, I think, and after the funeral I started getting sick, like...really sick. We moved away from the old town we lived in, to here in Derry but I was always sick so I never left the house. No-one really knew about me, and those who did I guess assumed I had died a long time ago as my mother never spoke about me, and I was never allowed outside even when I was feeling better than normal.”

Eddie stopped to take a breather, knowing it was getting to the rough part of the story now. As though sensing his hesitation, Richie cleared his throat, “Hey, it’s alright. Take your time, I’m not going anywhere.” He paused. “If you don’t mind me asking though, if you were sick why didn’t your mother call a doctor?”

With a very faint smile, Eddie looked up at Richie. “I appreciate that, but if I don’t keep going then I’ll never finish.” He stood up then, walking over to the window that overlooked the backyard. “About the doctor...I never found out until it was too late but, my mother was the one keeping me sick. She was putting poison into my food, rat poison, only enough to keep me ill but never enough to kill me. Then, one day she must have used too much. I was being sick, as usual, but then there was blood in my vomit. I panicked because there had never been blood before and I was feeling so faint. The last thing I remember about being alive was my nose starting to bleed and my mother’s figure in the doorway.” Edd stopped talking, the hard part over and he watched as his body trembled.

“She...what the fuck?” Richie breathed. “Why would she...why would she do that to you?”

“When I woke up, I was still in my room, where I had died but I wasn’t...me. Obviously. I could hear my mother’s voice from down stairs and I followed it. She had bagged up my body into a bin liner, or two and was scrubbing at her hands. That’s when I found out why. She was muttering about how she wanted to punish me for reminding her of my dad, because I looked so much like him. She said she never meant to kill me, but she had gotten reckless.” Eddie explained. “She had dug a hole in the backyard, and she dragged my body out there at 3am and buried it.”

Richie could only stare, his eyes rimmed with tears that he had shed and he wiped them away with a tissue. “You...didn’t deserve that, Eddie. Hell no-one did but especially not you. You were just a child and you endured...so much.”

Eddie nodded his head, looking down, “I was alive, but I never got to live. I didn’t even have many things to entertain me. My mother would give me some of her old magazines and I would watch whatever was on TV, but she wouldn’t buy me books or movies or anything. The only reason I know about Harry Potter was because the movie was on the tv one day.”

“So, no Disney? Or Fairy Tales?” Richie asked, his voice still laced with the horror of learning just how messed up Eddie’s life had been.

With a shake of his head, Eddie moved away from the window and back over to Richie. “No, nothing like that, though I do remember my dad reading me fairytales when I was little, but the book he had was sold along with all his other belongings.”

Richie’s arms twitched, as though he wanted to reach out and take Eddie into his arms, to hold him close and tell him everything was going to be okay. For the first time since they had started living together, Eddie found that he actually wished Richie could.

The feeling left Eddie feeling rather bitter, and when Richie cleaned up the living room and got back to focusing on his magic, he removed himself back to his bedroom. At some point, the front door opened and closed and with quick glance from the window, Eddie could see Richie walking down the street,

He hated it when Richie left, even though he knew it was impossible to ask him not to. He had to go to the store, or to see his friends. Just because Eddie couldn’t leave, didn’t mean he had to force Richie to stay. He must have lost himself in thought, as it Richie’s voice calling his name that brought him back to attention.

“Eds? Come down here, I’ve got a surprise for you!”

Unable to help himself, Eddie slipped down through the floor to the ceiling, appearing behind Richie. “You called?”

“Shit!” Richie jumped and span around, holding a hand over his heard as he breathed heavily. “Jeez Eds…”

With the somber mood gone, Eddie let out a laugh, “Sorry, couldn’t help myself. You said you had something for me?”

Richie’s eyes twinkled and he nodded, gesturing for Eddie to take a seat on the couch. “I’d been thinking, about how you’ve never read a fairytale, or seen a Disney movie before.” He started and brought out a bag. “So I went to the door and bought all the classics, that you can watch when I’m not here to entertain you!”

“Bold of you to assume you entertain me,” Eddie muttered and his eyes widened, “Shit, Richie…”

“Eds gets off a good one,” Richie grinned, clapping his hands.

Eddie looked down at all the movies in the bag. Snow White, Cinderella, The Little Mermaid, The Lion King. All of the movies that he had heard about but never actually seen. “Richie this...this is amazing.”

Richie grinned wide and reached into another bag, “Now this I made myself, using magic. And before you say anything, yes it all worked the way I wanted it to. I guess I just really wanted it to work.” With that, he pulled out a large book, similar to the one with the spells in it.

“What is it?” Eddie asked, staring at it with wide, curious eyes.

“This, Eds,” Richie started, placing the book on the floor. “Is a book of stories.” With a wave of his hand, Richie opened the book to a blank page. “Now, don’t be worried as this book is blank until you tell it exactly what you want to read. Want to read Harry Potter? The book will allow you to. It also turns the pages all on its own.”

Eddie scrambled onto his knees and he stared at the book with pure joy, “Richie...this is the best thing anyone could have ever done for me. Thank you so much.”

Richie rubbed the back of his neck with his hand and he smiled warmly at him, “I wanted you to have something nice, you deserve it Eds.”

At Richie’s words, something warm fluttered deep within Eddie, strong and bright. It made him feel nothing but happiness, but Eddie knew that that could only mean one thing. Danger.

Chapter Text

“Whatcha reading?”

Eddie looked up from where his head had been buried in the book Richie had given him. Over the days following Eddie had immersed himself in as many stories that he could and now, he was finally getting the chance to read the Harry Potter novels.

“Harry Potter, obviously,” Eddie smiled but paused when he took in Richie’s current appearance. “Are you going somewhere?”

Richie rubbed the back of his neck, taking a seat on the floor, careful enough so he didn’t occidentally touch Eddie. “I’m meeting up with an old friend. We grew up together in the city but he moved out here to be with his boyfriend, who is now his husband, Mike.”

Eddie frowned as he got the feeling Richie wasn’t telling him the whole story, “You’re dressed a little fancy for a catch up with friends though?” Then again, Eddie wasn’t sure what people wore when they went out to dinner, considering he never had the chance to experience it himself.

“Well uh, I’m kind of going-” Richie was cut off by the doorbell and he sighed, running his fingers through his curl. Just watching the action made Eddie wish he could just reach out and run his own fingers through it. He wanted to know how they felt, if they were tough or soft or even in between. “That’ll be Stan.”

As Richie stood up and made his way down the stairs to answer the door, Eddie thought about whether he should follow. Would Stan be able to see him just like Richie could? Unable to diminish his curiosity, Eddie moved from the floor and floated towards the top of the stairs.

“Stan the man as I live and breathe!” Richie grinned, pulling the new man into a hug that left a bitter taste in Eddie’s mouth. As they pulled back, Richie stepped to the side, allowing Stan to properly come into the house and look around. “It’s good to see you, it’s been a while.”

“Too long, Tozier. I told you before that you needed to come here and visit. What took you so long to listen to me?” Stan asked, crossing his arms and raising his eyebrow. Eddie moved down the stairs a little more, peering through the gap in the bannister.

Richie just laughed and shook his head, “You know me Stan, I gotta do things in my own time.” He exhaled and leaned against the wall. “I do get it though, it’s much more relaxed up here than in the city. I can actually focus.”

Stan hummed, taking another look around. As his eyes flitted over to where Eddie was sitting, he tensed just a little but Stan moved on, not having seen him. “Was this the only place on the market?” He asked.

“At the time, yeah. There was another place but they said it wouldn’t have been ready for another few weeks and I needed to move straight away,” Richie explained. “Why?”

With a shake of his head, Stan let out a breath, “No reason, it’s just...Mike said this house is probably the creepiest place you could have picked...after the house on Neibolt Street of course.”

Eddie edged himself a little closer at that, and he spotted Richie side glancing at him, but only for a second. “What do you mean?”

“Mike’s lived here his whole life, and he said that this woman used to live here and she had a kid, but the kid died and she never left the house until one day, she packed up and moved,” Stan explained and Eddie swallowed. So the people of Derry did think he was already dead. “This house has been on the market for five years, but no-one wanted to buy it because they said it had a weird aura. Not that I believe in that stuff but, it does feel a little...off.”

Richie blinked before he let out a chuckle, “Stan, you do know that I’m a warlock right? If there was anything off about this place I’d know about it.” Eddie watched as Stan seemed to relax at Richie’s reassuring words and he felt himself relax along with him. “Anyway, shouldn’t we get going?”

“Right, Mike’s at the restaurant with Joseph, your date for this evening,” Stan grinned and Eddie’s eyes widened as everything fell into place. Of course Richie was dressed up fancy because he was not only meeting up with a friend, but he was also going on a date.

A weird feeling filled up in his stomach, one that no matter how hard he tried, Eddie couldn’t push away or ignore. Before he could help himself, he scoffed and muttered out, “Joseph? What kind of a name is that?”

Then, as though he had forgotten Stan was in the room, Richie muttered back, “A normal one that’s what.” Eddie’s head snapped around as Stan blinked in surprise. It took Richie only a few seconds to realise his mistake before he cleared his throat, “I mean, yes sure let’s go. I’ll meet you out at the car, I just need to grab something.”

Stan nodded and with one last look towards the stairs that Eddie was occupying, he left the house and headed back to the car. Richie didn’t move from where he was standing, and he didn’t speak up until the rumbling of the car engine was heard outside.

When he looked up, Richie was glaring and Eddie felt a completely new feeling settle in his stomach. Guilt. “You made me look like a total idiot there, you know that right?”

Eddie blinked a few times before he shook his head, “I- I’m sorry! I’m not used to people being able to hear me when I talk.”

Just like that, the glare was gone from Richie’s face and his expression softened. “You’re right, shit. I’m sorry. I didn’t mean to be so harsh.” He took a step forward, his eyes apologetic but Eddie moved back. “Eds, hey I’m sorry.”

“It’s fine, Richie,” Eddie whispered. “You should go, Stan’s waiting. Don’t worry about me, I’ll stay out of your way.” Without waiting for Richie to say anything more, he floated back up the stairs and into his room, making sure to lock the door so he was alone.

He had no idea what to do with the countless emotions that were swirling around inside him. If he were alive, he would definitely be crying, but since ghosts couldn’t shed any tears he was just stuck, unable to do anything about it or make it any easier. He listened as Richie left the house and got into Stan’s car and he listened as it drove away.

After a while, Eddie tried to pull himself together and he moved back to the book that had been abandoned on the floor. He wasn’t in the mood to read more of the Harry Potter book, he chose something a little more...fitting for what he was feeling. Anna Karenia. If he couldn’t deal with his emotions physically, then at least he could project them into what he was reading. Nothing better than to read about others going through the same thing he is.

It the time that Richie was gone, Eddie had read the whole book from start to finish and somehow, he still didn’t feel any better. He still felt awful and he wanted nothing more than for Richie to come back so they could solve the problem that Eddie himself, had created. No matter how hard he tried to deny it, Richie was the sole source of Eddie’s happiness.

Whenever Richie was around, Eddie would smile and whenever he was gone Eddie would be sad. It was a repeat pattern and Eddie knew it was only going to end up hurting more in the long run, but he couldn’t help himself.

“Eds?” Eddie jumped as Richie’s voice filtered through the locked door and his head whipped to the clock. It was just passed midnight and he had been so lost in thought he hadn’t heard Richie come back. “Eddie please open the door.”

Eddie knew that Richie could very easily open the door with his magic, but he also knew that he wouldn’t. He allowed the book to close over, not wanting Richie to see what novel he had been reading and he opened the door, letting him in. “Hi.”

Richie stepped into the room and sat down on the floor next to Eddie, “Eddie…”

“I’m sorry about earlier,” Eddie cut him off, looking down. “I really didn’t mean to embarrass you, or make you out to be stupid or anything like that.”

Richie shook his head, “You have nothing to be sorry for, Eds. You didn’t do anything wrong.” He edged just a little bit closer. “This is your home too, you can do whatever you want, say whatever you want here.”

Eddie let out a laugh that sounded a little bitter, “Richie this...this isn’t my home. I’m dead. I am just an unexpected addition. I promise I won’t do anything like that again.”

“Eds, listen to me,” Richie spoke up after a small pause. “And believe me when I say I would be very very bored if you weren’t here.”

“Really?” Eddie asked, his voice still quiet. Then, as though on cue, the smile that always appeared whenever Richie was around him made its way onto his lips. “I believe you.”

Richie grinned, “Good, I’m glad we’re on the same page!” He stood up. “I have to study, a warlocks work is never done. Gotta get better and all that, you know.”

“Can I watch?” Eddie asked, his eyes hopeful and Richie nodded his head as he headed to the door. They headed down the stairs to the living room and Eddie took a seat on the floor as Richie got to work. It was amazing, watching the differences between a spell going right and a spell going wrong.

At some point during the study session, Richie had ended up turning Hades from a black cat into a green cat. “Oh shit,” Richie muttered as Eddie held back his giggle. “That...that was not meant to happen.” He took a few steps towards the cat, only for him to be hissed at. “Okay okay, I’ll turn you back!”

It took a few tries, but eventually Richie managed to turn him back to his regular black colour. “What were you trying to do?” Eddie asked.

“I was trying to turn the carpet a different colour...not the cat,” Richie groaned, closing the book. “My grandmother was right, I really am not cut out for this. I’m such an idiot!”

Eddie frowned and floated over to him, “You’re not an idiot. How are you meant to learn if you don’t make mistakes?”

Richie let out another groan, “That’s just it Eds, I shouldn’t be making mistakes. At my age, I should be in complete control of my powers.”

At Richie’s words, Eddie realised that he didn’t actually know how old Richie was. “How old are you? If you don’t mind me asking?

“Not at all!” Richie shook his head. “I’m twenty seven, what about you? How old were you when you died?”

Eddie swallowed as he let that information rest in his mind. Richie was currently twenty seven, which meant they were the same age, born in the same year. Except Eddie wasn’t ageing anymore. “I was twenty two.”

Richie seemed to connect the dots also and he blinked at Eddie, “We were the same age.”

“Yeah. We were the same age."

The mood seemed to shift at that, from happy to sad in less than a minute. That was when Richie clapped his hands, startling not only Eddie, but Hades who had fallen asleep in the corner. “Let’s watch a movie!”

The suggestion brightened Eddie up and he nodded, looking towards the television, “What movie?”

“Mhm,” Richie pondered, rubbing his thumb and forefinger along his chin before a grin appeared on his lips, “What about...Ghost?”

“Ha ha, very funny,” Eddie rolled his eyes. “Is that an actual movie?”

Richie laughed and pulled it out of his collection, “Why of course it is.” He slipped it into the dvd player and sat back on the couch, patting the seat next to him. “C’mere.”

Slowly, Eddie made his way over to the couch, sitting next to Richie closely, but not so close that they would accidentally touch. The movie was funnier that Eddie thought it would be and mid way through he turned to Richie, who was engrossed by the movie. “Richie?”

“Hm?” Richie asked, turning his head so their eyes could meet. The action caused another weird feeling to erupt in Eddie’s stomach, but he managed to push it away in favour of saying what he really wanted to say.

“Thanks."

Chapter Text

“So is Joseph your boyfriend now?” Eddie asked a few nights after Richie’s double date. The question had been playing on his mind since that night, but due to the tensions that had arisen in the house, Eddie had held his tongue. However, he was unable to hold his curiosity at bay any longer.

Richie looked up from the book he was studying and stared at Eddie has though he had grown another head, “What? No!” He shook his head vigorously. “No, it was just...a one time thing.”

They were in Richie’s room, sitting far enough apart from each other, but still relatively close. Richie was sprawled out on his stomach, and Eddie was sitting by the headboard. “Oh,” Eddie nodded, understanding exactly where Richie was coming from now that he had elaborated. The question that followed though, was not one he expected to leave his lips, “Was he good?”

“You mean in bed?” Richie asked, his eyebrows raised slightly as he watched Eddie carefully.

If Eddie could blush, he was sure his cheeks would be bright red at that point. Under Richie’s intense stare, he wished that he could take back the question that had been burning against his lips, but he couldn’t. It was out in the open now and Eddie had to deal with those consequences. “Yeah, I mean in bed.”

Richie blinked a few times and sat up, crossing his legs in front of Eddie, “Well, he was okay I suppose. I’ve had better, but I have also had worse. Why do you ask?”

It was thatquestion that Eddie had been dreading, after all the question was rather inappropriate. It mainly stemmed from his curiosity, wondering what it was like to be with another person, to completely give yourself over, as it was something he never had the opportunity to experience for himself.

He gave a light shrug in response and looked down at his hands, “I guess...I’m just curious.”

Realisation settled on Richie’s face and Eddie could see the lump form in his throat as he swallowed. There was silence that stretched out between them until Richie finally spoke up, “I can tell you, if you want me to.”

“Tell me?” Eddie whispered softly and if he had a heart, he was sure it would be beating out of his chest at a rapid rate.

Richie nodded his head, “You might no longer be living, but you clearly can still feelthings. People do say that talking is one of my high points, so let me talk. Let me describe to you what is it like to be with another person.”

Eddie paused, staring at Richie as though he had grown a second head, but the look of seriousness on his face was clear to him that this was no joke. Richie was honestly offering to tell Eddie what it was like to have sex with someone. He knew he should decline and leave the room, never to speak of it again, but...he wanted to know. He nodded his head.

With a grin, Richie shifted on the bed so he was sitting up, “Alright, lay back on the bed for me and close your eyes. Listen to my voice and my voice alone, okay?”

Doing as Richie asked, Eddie lay down on the bed, closing his eyes as he faced the ceiling. He knew if he was alive, his whole body would have been trembling, his heart beating hard against his ribcage. He could almost feel it, remembering what it felt like to have blood flowing through his veins, to have a beating heart.

Richie shifted on the bed once more, until he was laying down next to him, his head right by Eddie’s ear. “When I’m with someone, normally I start with my hands...just caressing their skin. Their thighs, their stomach, fingers grazing over the sensitive spot of their neck.” He breathed into Eddie’s ear and he inhaled sharply, even though he had no need to. “I kiss all over their body, making my way up until I finally reach their lips, and by the time I do, I can feel their hips moving under my hands as I caress up their sides.”

As Richie spoke, his words soft in Eddie’s ear, he could almost feel it. The caressing touches, the feeling of Richie’s lips pressed against his stomach, making their way up his chest to his neck and then finally, his lips. God, how he wanted to be able to feel all of it, to drown himself in everything that was Richie Tozier.

“Then, depending on the mood,” Richie continued, his voice still husky and right in Eddie’s ear. It was intoxicating, and he never wanted him to stop. “I’ll either turn them over, so they are laying on their stomach and my lips will move down the expanse of their back, until I’m between their legs. I’m often told my tongue is magical when used in the right way.”

It didn’t take a genius to know what Richie was talking about, and Eddie had to force himself to hold back the whimper that was aching to escape. The thought of Richie kneeling between his thighs, spreading him open and using his tongue to make him fall apart was almost too much to handle.

“After I’ve made them fall apart, if they are aching for more, I’ll turn them back around,” Richie was closer to his ear now, almost as close as he could get and Eddie could sense his hands moving over his form, just close enough to touch. “I’ll grab the lube from the bed and uncap it, using it to open them up even more than I did with my tongue. My long fingers crook up, caressing over that spot inside that delivers undeniable pleasure, and I’ll bring them right to the edge.”

Eddie shivered, unable to help himself as he gasped out, “Then what?”

He heard Richie chuckle from beside him, “Then, then I fuck them. However they want it. Nice and slow, or hard and fast. I fuck them until they’re screaming, and coming all over the bed.”

“Holy shit,” Eddie hissed, squeezing his eyes shut. After a few moments, he felt the bed shift and Richie moved away. He took that as a sign to open his eyes and when he did, Richie was staring at him.

“Was that what you wanted?” Richie asked, his eyes soft, a smile on his lips.

All Eddie could do was nod his head, once and twice before he excused himself, disappearing through the floorboards in a flash, leaving Richie alone.

* * * * *

There were two days out of the year that Eddie Kaspbrak hated more than anything in the world. The first was the day he died, the day his mother finally fed him too much poison and he was left to die on his bedroom floor. The second was his birthday, the day he was born, the day he was meant to get one year older each time it came around. Now, all it served as was a reminder that he was forever stuck.

Today was his birthday. He would have been twenty-seven years old.

It was early, close to five in the morning and Richie was still fast asleep. Slowly, he made his way to the back door and out into the garden. Even from his spot on the porch he could see it, the patch of dark green grass right at the back of the garden where his decaying body lay, where his mother had dumped him once she’d realised just how far she’d gone.

He made his way over, each step harder than the last. The first year he had come out here no problem, the next year it was a little harder. Now, five years later Eddie hated the thought of standing over his grave, but it was a tradition, and he wanted to keep it.

It had started to rain, little droplets at first, but soon it developed into a full blown rain storm. It battered off of the patio and the path that lead round to the front of the house. Eddie let out a bitter laugh. It had been glorious sunshine for weeks, no rain in sight, but it decided to pour it down on his birthday. How kind of it.

“What are you doing out here?” A voice spoke from beside him and Eddie gasped out loud, not having heard Richie approach him when he was in mid thought. “Shit, sorry. I didn’t mean to scare you.”

Eddie shook his head, turning to face Richie who was standing next to him in his pyjamas, shoes and holding an umbrella, “What are youdoing out here?” He asked. “It’s raining.”

“No shit,” Richie laughed, frowning. “Is everything alright? You...don’t seem like yourself.”

With a pause, Eddie turned to look back down at the grass, his shoulder slumped in defeat. “It’s my birthday today, or at least, it would have been if I were still alive.” He shrugged. “I guess, I come out here and just...I don’t know, stare?”

A look passed over Richie’s face and he looked from Eddie, down to the patch of grass and then back up. Recognition was now clear on his features and it was confirmed by his next words, “Is this...is this where?”

“Where my mother dumped me?” Eddie finished for Richie, nodding his head. “Yeah, this is my final resting place. Look at it, I don’t even have a headstone.”

Suddenly, Richie turned around and started to head back towards the house. Eddie frowned in confusion for a few moments, staring at the door that had been left open. After a couple of minutes, Richie emerged once more, this time, holding a small bunch of flowers in his hand that he had clearly conjured.

All Eddie could do was watch as Richie approached the patch of grass and knelt down, his umbrella now discarded to the side, his hair and pyjamas already soaked through. He placed the flowers on top of the grass, kissing his fingertips and then touching the petals. “Happy Birthday, Eds.”

“Thank you,” Eddie croaked out when Richie stood back up. “Thank you, Richie.”

A silence fell between them, before Richie’s face lit up, as though a light bulb went off in his head. “You know, there are less depressing ways to spend your birthday. Come on.” With that he started heading back towards the house, Eddie having no choice but to follow him.

When they reached the kitchen, Richie flicked on some music on the stereo and lit some candles around the place. When the realisation of what was happening set in, Eddie felt himself begin to smile. “Are you throwing me a birthday party?”

Richie’s hand reached to the back of his neck, rubbing it nervously. “That’s exactly what I’m doing. I’d bake you a cake but...that’d be pointless.” His words trailed off and he looked down at the floor for a moment. “But I thought maybe we could dance?”

Eddie was about to say yes, when he remembered something, “I thought you had a date this afternoon? Don’t you need to get ready for it?”

With a glance to the clock, Richie shrugged a little, “I have plenty of time, Eds. Don’t worry.” He held out his hand towards Eddie, “We can’t touch but...we can pretend.”

Nodding, Eddie took a step closer to Richie, pretending to take his hand in his as they moved into a dance, swaying to the beat of the music coming through the speakers. “I wish we could touch,” he whispered.

“I wish I could have met you before you died,” Richie whispered back, his voice full of...something that Eddie could’t place. “I’d have taken you out on a date. A proper one. Swept you right off your feet.”

That statement took Eddie by surprise and he shot his head up, eyes widening, “You would have?” The words also left a bitter taste in his mouth, knowing that if he were breathing, he would have a chance with Richie.

"Absolutely. You're... You're amazing, Eddie." He said, smiling softly and chewing on his lower lip. "I wish I could have held you. Even just once... Or smelled your skin or the scent of your shampoo. Felt the weight of your head on my shoulder."

They were still moving, Richie’s words weighing heavily on his mind, “I think you’d have changed my life,” Eddie whispered. “If I’d met you, you’d have gotten me out...I’m sure of it.”

Richie’s eyes were soft now, almost sad. “I wish I hadn’t been so late, Eds.”

“Hey no, no don’t blame yourself for this. None of this is your fault,” Eddie said seriously. “It’s not.” There was no way he was going to allow Richie to blame himself for something that he had nothing to do with. This was his mother’s fault. No-one else..

"I know, but..." Richie sighed, then shook his head. "I'm just so sorry that this happened to you. You never deserved any of this Eddie. You’re so special, and you deserved to have a life. More than anything.”

Eddie shook his head, eyes cast downwards, “I’m sorry too, and...I wish it hadn’t happened, but it did. It did happen and there is nothing you, nor I, can do to change it.”

Richie nodded, his eyes meeting Eddie’s as they looked back up. He opened his mouth, as though he were about to say something when he glanced at the clock. “Shit! I need to get ready!” Then, just like that, Richie was off up the steps, leaving Eddie alone in the kitchen with his thoughts.

Well, only one thought really.

He was falling in love with Richie Tozier.

Chapter Text

After the realisation that Eddie was very clearly falling for Richie, he began ghosting him. Yes, that was a pun thank you very much, and yes it was intended. Whenever Richie entered a room, Eddie disappeared. He ignored him when he was called and he made a point of not using the magic book that Richie had made for him. Yes, Eddie knew deep down that he was being ridiculous, that Richie was at no fault here, but he was hurting and this was the only way he could think of that...helped.

The ghosting lasted a total of two weeks. Two weeks of Eddie not speaking to Richie, which was killing him deep down as he seriously missed the company. After being alone in the house for five years, actually having someone to talk to was amazing, and now that he didn’t have that it was like a hole was cut out in his chest and he felt empty.

It all came to a head the day Richie went on a date with a snotty nosed girl from two towns over. Eddie had overheard Richie chatting with Stan on the phone about how he had met her at the store, and that she was coming over so they could watch a movie together and...get freaky. The way Richie had spoken to Stan, with somewhat of a tense tone, made Eddie think that he really wasn’t up for the date, but since he had nothing else to do he didn’t see the harm.

The thought that Richie was only going on a date with someone because Eddie wasn’t talking to him made him feel a little sick in his stomach, a feeling he absolutely despised.

Friday night rolled around, and the night of Richie’s date. Eddie had thought that maybe Richie would have cooked some food for the girl, but instead at around 7pm, the doorbell rang and pizza was delivered. He sat down on the top stair, watching as Richie set-up the living room for the movie, which was some horror movie. At exactly 7:15, the doorbell rang and Eddie watched nervously as Richie opened the door and a blonde bimbo stepped in, planting a kiss on Richie’s cheek.

Eddie gagged at the sight.

She was on the shorter side, long blonde hair that reached her shoulders and was clearly bleached, long ass fake nails and her face full of makeup. In Eddie’s honest opinion, he thought she looked like an Oompa Loompa from Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory, a movie that Richie had introduced him to a few weeks prior. All in all, this girl was a disaster from the word go.

“Lucy, come on in!” Richie greeted, his hand moving to her lower back as she stepped into the house, and he closed the door behind her. He helped her with her jacket, hanging it up on the hooks by the door before leading her into the living room where he had organised everything. Against his better judgement, Eddie followed, but made sure to stay out of Richie’s line of sight.

Lucy giggled a fake, high pitched laugh, covering her mouth as she took a seat, “Aw, you really didn’t have to go through all this trouble for little old me…” Her voice was sickly sweet and Eddie rolled his eyes, sinking into the darkness in the corner.

Richie shook his head, popping open the still hot pizza boxes and gesturing for her to dig in, “I hope pizza is alright, and I’ve set up a movie for us to watch. Hope you don’t mind horror?”

“Perfect, I’ll just snuggle up with you. You’ll keep me safe.” Lucy smiled, showing all of her pearly white teeth and she shimmied back on the couch, pressing up to Richie as close as she possibly could.

They ate their pizza in silence, the movie starting to play in the background and when they were finished, Richie shut off the lights. As they cuddled up together on the sofa, Eddie watched them, his chest tightening at the sight. He couldn’t help but imagine himself in the place of the girl, his head resting on Richie’s shoulder, legs hooked over his own as they whispered soft words to each other in affection.

As soon as the thought entered Eddie’s mind, it began to wander to other things. How it would feel if he were alive and could actually have a chance with Richie. How it would feel to hold his hand and walk down the street together, laughing as they went to meet up with Richie’s friends. How they would have a date night every Thursday night since he knew from Richie’s conversations that the Italian place was half price on a Thursday night. He imagined them laying on Richie’s bed, snuggling up together as they read one of the books that Richie recommended and cooking dinner together in the kitchen.

He was so head over heels in love with Richie, that there was no going back. He was stuck, forever doomed to have feelings for someone that he could well...never have. It was absolute torture.

Eddie moved a little closer, glaring as he saw Lucy place her hand on Richie’s thigh, moving it an inch closer to his groin every few moments. Richie’s body language was tense, and that was when Eddie formed his plan to get this girl the hell out of his house.

It started with little things, like moving the door just a little so it creaked. He smirked as he saw Lucy turn around, as though trying to locate the sound, but Richie assured her that it was just a draft that flowed through the house as it was quite an old structure. She seemed to buy it, as she turned back to the movie. That was when Eddie upped his game, using his mind to open the window, causing a gust of wind to knock over an item that was on the window ledge.

At that, Lucy let out a scream, almost jumping from her seat as Richie rushed over to the window and pulled it shut. He glanced around the room and Eddie knew he was looking for him, but because of how dark it was, and Eddie’s current position, he couldn’t see him. Good.

“Sorry, I must have forgot to close the window,” Richie apologised, giving the room one last scan before he returned to his seat. Lucy took that chance to actually sit in Richie’s lap, her head in the crook of his shoulder. Eddie held back a growl, knowing that if he made any noise, Richie would find him and the fun would be over.

Not wanting the game to be over too soon, Eddie waited a while, the movie continuing into the middle part and getting somewhat scary. That was when he made his next move. He focused his gaze on the fireplace which was located just to the left of where Richie and Lucy were sitting. On top were various ornaments and pictures alike and with one single look, they all tumbled from their position and onto the floor.

Lucy let out a blood curdling scream, shifting so fast her hand whacked right against Richie’s groin, causing him to let out a grunt of pain. “Shit!” Richie swore, his eyes scrunched shut as he brought his hand down between his legs. “What the fuck.”

“I’m sorry Richie, I can’t stay here. This house is haunted!” Lucy wailed, rushing towards the exit. Deciding to play one final trick on the girl, Eddie made the living room door slam shut in her face, grinning as he watched her forcefully pull the handle in an attempt to get out, before he let it go. He snorted as it flew open in her face, smacking her nose before she gathered her things and vanished out the door and into her car.

Happy with how the night planned out, Eddie disappeared back up the stairs into his room, letting out a giggle to himself at the terrified look on Lucy’s face as she rushed from the house.

No less than a minute later, Richie’s voice bellowed up the stairs, calling Eddie’s name. He was pissed, Eddie could tell from his tone of voice, but he couldn’t quite find it in him to care. As far as he was concerned, Eddie had just saved Richie from a horrible evening with an equally horrible person.

“Yes?” Eddie appeared behind Richie, making him jump and spin around, his eyes narrowing at the sight of him. “Is everything okay?”

“Don’t play dumb,” Richie hissed, crossing his arms. He was very clearly agitated and Eddie started to feel a little guilty for what he had done. “You avoid me for two weeks and then when I get a girl over for a movie you....what the fuck was that anyway?”

Eddie just blinked at him, thinking about continuing to play dumb, but eventually deciding against it. “She wasn’t right for you. I was just saving you from having a horrible night.”

Richie’s eyes just narrowed even further and Eddie felt his confidence weaken. Richie was really angry with him. “That wasn’t your decision to make. I don’t know what’s been going on with you lately, but you don’t get to just...ignore me and then decide who I get to spend my time with. It doesn’t work both ways!”

“That’s not...I didn’t mean it like that…” Eddie tried to explain but he was just digging himself into an even deeper hole. One that Richie clearly had no interest in helping him out of.

“Then how exactly did you mean it, Eddie? I am all ears.” Richie crossed his arms, staring at him as he waited for an answer, an answer that Eddie couldn’t give him as he didn’t have one. He knew that if he needed to breathe, he would be in the midst of a panic attack right now. What had started off as a harmless prank had completely blew up in his face.

Taking his silence as what it was, not having an explanation, Richie headed into his room, grabbing a bag and stuffing some things into it with haste. “I can’t believe this. I can’t believe you.”

“Richie...Richie I’m sorry. Please just...don’t be angry with me. I’m sorry.” Eddie begged, wanting nothing more than to reach out, take Richie by the arm and force him to just stop and listen to him.

“Angry with you?” Richie snapped, whipping his head back around, “I’m not angry with you, I’m furious. You had no...no right to do that Eddie no matter what she was like. It was a really nasty and just...overall asshole thing to do.” He stormed to the bathroom and grabbed a toothbrush, shoving it into his bag.

At the commotion, Hades had appeared from his hibernation, jumping onto the bed and stretching. He made a look towards where Eddie was before he padded over to Richie, curling around his legs in confusion. He could clearly sense the anger not only in Richie’s tone, but also in his body language.

“Just...please wait,” Eddie begged but Instead of replying, Richie just turned around and headed down the stairs, pulling his jacket on as well as his shoes. Panic surfaced and Eddie followed him, voice softer now. “Wait, where are you going?”

Richie spun around, grabbing his keys from the table. “I’m going to Stan’s. I don’t think I can stand being in the same house as you right now.”

Eddie followed him to the porch, which was as far as he was able to go before he was pulled back by an unseen force. Trying one final time to get Richie to stay, he called out, “Are you coming back?”

Stopping before he reached the car, Richie turned around, his eyes still heated and he sent Eddie a light shrug. “I don’t know.”

Then, without another word, Richie got into his car and drove out the drive, disappearing down the street and into the night.

Chapter Text

The house was silent without Richie making some sort of noise. Whether he was singing in the shower, or swearing when he got a spell wrong, there was always something that made Eddie feel warm inside knowing that Richie was home. Right now though, the house was eerie, the only sounds to be heard were the dripping of the leaky bathroom tap and the odd meow from Hades.

Richie had been gone for a few days, and Eddie wasn’t sure if he would ever come back. Even though all of his things were still in the house, all of his books and well, Hades was still here. He had to come back for his cat, right? What worried Eddie the most, was that if Richie did come back, he wouldn’t engage with him.

Eddie’s apology was already planned out, had been since the moment Richie vanished down the street and into the night. The reality of what had happened crashed over him in a wave and Eddie was immediately overcome with immense guilt. Richie was right, Eddie had no place deciding who Richie spent his time with and he had no right to scare her off like that no matter what he thought of her.

Eddie was dead for fuck’s sake. There was never going to bea him and Richie no matter what he wanted, because he was dead.

The sound of a car pulling into the drive broke Eddie out of his thoughts and he rushed to the window, looking down in relief as he watched Richie walk up to the porch and open the front door. He wanted more than anything to go down and greet him, but he held himself back. If Richie wanted to talk to him, he would seek him out and until then, Eddie would give him his privacy.

He listened as Richie greeted Hades, pouring some biscuits into his bowl and sitting out some fresh water for him. After that everything went silent, so silent that if Eddie hadn’t seen Richie walk in to the house he’d have been convinced he’d imagined the sounds.

“Eds? I know your here, come down so we can talk?” The sound of Richie’s voice calling up the stairs was like music to his ears and Eddie slowly apparated down the stairs, appearing behind Richie. Before he could say something, Richie turned around and Eddie got a good look at the state of him. He looked exhausted, eyes dark and baggy and skin pale. “Hey.”

“Hi…” Eddie whispered. “Listen I’m so-”

“I’m sor…” Richie cut off with a nervous laugh, reaching up to run his hands through his hair. “You go first, please.”

Eddie looked down and then back up at Richie, his pre-prepared apology on the tip of his tongue, “I’m sorry,” he breathed. “You were right, I was completely out of line and I shouldn’t have done what I did. It was extremely childish of me and I have no right to decide who you spend your time with.”

Richie shook his head, stopping him in his tracks, “I overreacted, I completely overreacted. I shouldn’t have stormed off and left you here in a place you can never escape. I calmed down within a few hours but I didn’t think I could face you, I was so embarrassed with myself. When I was at Stan’s I realised just how much I...how much I love spending time with you, and not having you around...it felt like there was a piece of me missing.”

If Eddie could cry, he would have been outright sobbing. Richie’s words settled in his brain and he wanted to lurch forward and cling to Richie and never let go. Instead, he took a small step forward, “I won’t turn down spending time with you. Ever. All you have to do is say the word.”

“Do you want to watch a movie?” Richie asked and Eddie nodded his head, so quick that some of his hair fell loose into his face.

“I’d love to.”

They set up the living room and Richie popped a movie into the DVD player. They both settled on the couch, close together but far enough apart not to touch each other. After about thirty minutes into the movie, Richie was fast asleep, his head resting on the pillow at the edge of the sofa, his body covered by the blanket. He looked so peaceful and it made Eddie’s stomach twist. The TV eventually went into standby, leaving the room in darkness, only illuminated by the light from the streetlight outside. Carefully, Eddie moved a little closer to Richie, smiling as he watched Richie sleep peacefully, undisturbed. It only made him fall in love more.

“I love you,” Eddie breathed, closing his eyes tight as the words left his lips. “I’m telling you now, when you’re asleep because...because it’s not fair to you. It’s not fair for you to be burdened with the feelings of a dead person. That’s why I scared that girl away, because I was jealous and that’s also why I was avoiding you. I...I didn’t know what to do, all I knew...all I knowis that I love you and...and I don’t know what I’d do without you.”

Eddie trailed off and silence filled the room, only broken by Richie’s breathing. He was just about to move back, to let Richie sleep in peace, when he shifted in his sleep, a breath leaving his lips. “Eds…” For a moment, Eddie thought that Richie had woken up, had heard his confession, but it was soon clear that he was dreaming...and his name was muttered in his sleep.

Instead of leaving, Eddie spent the rest of the night watching Richie as he slept, making sure that nothing would disturb him from his slumber. He clearly needed to catch up on his sleep. He remained by his side until the sun rose in the sky, and Richie stirred, his eyes fluttering open and landing on Eddie’s form. Eddie backed up a little, surprised that he had been caught. “Were you watching me sleep?”

“I- uh...I didn’t want to leave.” Eddie admitted, looking at the ground. “I’m sorry if it was creepy.”

Richie just grinned and shook his head, sitting up and rubbing his eyes, “Hey, stop worrying. It’s okay. I was just teasing you.” He stood up and stretched, his shirt riding up and revealing some of his stomach. “You must have been bored though, watching me sleep.”

“Bored?” Eddie shook his head. “I’m never bored when I’m with you. Even if you are fast asleep.” The words that he had uttered the night before were still on the tip of his tongue, desperate to come out to a conscious Richie. He pushed the urge down though, as he meant what he said, he didn’t want to burden him.

With a grin, Richie stepped back and grabbed a towel from the cupboard, making his way to the stairs, “I’m just going for a shower, I won’t be long and we can watch another movie yeah?” Eddie simply smiled and nodded at him, watching as he disappeared up the stairs and into the bathroom.

Once the shower was running, Eddie exhaled and sat down on the floor, burying his head in his hands. His pity party was interrupted by Hades, meowing and moving around his legs, his tail apparating through him. The cat looked up at Eddie, giving him a pointed look, as though he could read his thoughts. “Leave me alone,” he muttered and Hades simply meowed back, his stare almost intensifying before he jumped up onto the counter and out the window.

Eddie heard the shower turn off and Richie stumble out, thumps coming from above him. He frowned and looked up, wondering what Richie was doing, but he didn’t have to wonder for long as Richie stumbled down the stairs, hair soaking wet and in nothing but a towel. His brain short circuited as he came to a stop in front of him. “I want to do something to help you.”

With a frown, Eddie tilted his head to the side, trying not to make it too obvious that he was staring at Richie’s still wet body. “What- Richie what are you talking about?”

“I want to help you,” Richie repeated. “I want to help you out of...of this.This situation that you’re in right now.” His eyes were wide, his breathing heavy and he was deadly serious.

Eddie shook his head, “Richie...there is nothing-”

“There must be something I can do to help you!” Richie stressed and walked to the bookshelf, picking up a large thick book from the highest shelf and started flipping through the pages frantically. “I could...there’s got to be something in here. This book is meant to have all the answers!”

Eddie’s frown deepened and he approached Richie slowly, watching him carefully, “Richie...stop. There is nothing you can do. I told you. My body isn’t in a real grave, that’s why I didn’t get to move on. That’s why I’m stuck here in this house. It’s why I can’t leave....” Eddie trailed off and turned away. “You’d be wasting your time.”

As the words left Eddie’s lips, Richie looked up, his eyes even wider, as though a lightbulb had gone off in his head. “What...what if I dug you up?” He suggested and Eddie felt a surge of panic fill him from his head to his toes. “I could...give you a real funeral.”

“No!” Eddie spluttered out, shaking his head, walking around the table so he was facing Richie between the large book. “No, please...please don’t do that. Please.”

Richie frowned, shaking his head, “Why not?” He asked softly, his hand reaching out, mere inches from Eddie’s. “I could set you free. You wouldn’t be stuck here...you’d be able to move on.”

Unable to think of a suitable lie about why he would choose to be trapped in the house he was murdered in, Eddie had no other choice but to tell Richie the truth, “Because I don’t want to leave,” he whispered. “Please...don’t make me leave.”

"But- you're stuck here, Eds. Forever. And I could set you free, I could let you rest in peace." Richie said, standing up and moving around the table, closer to Eddie.

“Richie...I don’t want to leave,” Eddie whispered again. “I...I don’t want to leave you.”

There was a silence and Eddie thought about apparating right there, disappearing into his room and calming down. He didn’t though, he was tired of running away, so instead he just stared at Richie as he waited for him to respond. It took a few moments, but when Richie did speak up, it was with the last thing Eddie expected him to say. “If you don’t want to leave...then I’ll find a way to bring you back.”

Eddie let out a choked gasp of shock, staring at Richie with wide, unbelieving eyes. He shook his head, trying to bring his thoughts around to what Richie had just said. “W-What? Can you even…can you even do that?” He asked, shaking slightly.

“I shouldn’t even be thinking about this.” Richie muttered, pacing back and forth in the kitchen and running his fingers through his hair once more. “Messing with death...it’s a dangerous thing. Its ugly and it can cause so many unwanted problems but…” he looked up at Eddie with nothing but determination in his eyes. “But I don’t care. I’m going to bring you back Eds, you...you deserve to live.”

Swallowing, Eddie took a few steps towards Richie, “Richie...I don’t want you doing anything dangerous for me.” They were standing just a few feet away from each other now, the only real barrier being Eddie himself keeping them from touching each other.

“I have to,” Richie whispered, his hand moving up in a motion to cup Eddie’s cheek. “I have to try and bring you back, Eds. Whatever it takes.”

Eddie felt his lower lip tremble, “Richie...Richie I have to tell you something. I- I told you last night but you were asleep...” He couldn’t hold himself back, not anymore, not when Richie was literally putting everything on the line for him. He deserved to know the truth.

Richie moved closer, leaning his head down so that their lips were as close as possible. "I heard you." He whispered, so quiet that Eddie almost never caught it. But he did and his eyes snapped open.

“You- you did?” Eddie asked, his eyes wide. “You never said anything?” At this, Eddie slowly made a move to step back. If Richie had heard him, and never said anything...then maybe there really was nothing between them and he was being a complete and utter fool.

Before Eddie could let his thoughts wander away from him, Richie locked their eyes together, his gaze soft and....loving? “I love you too, Eds. I think I have been for a while now I was just...well an idiot.” He let out a soft breath of a chuckle. “You’re the only person I want to spend time with and I miss you when we’re apart.”

“I love you,” Eddie whispered, a smile lighting up his whole face. “But...please, be careful.”

Richie nodded his head. “I love you Eds, and I’m going to bring you back. I promise.”

Chapter Text

The house shook as an explosion came from the basement and Eddie would have jumped out of his skin if he had any. A sigh left his lips and he slowly made his way down to the basement, spotting Richie with his head buried in the spell book, flipping through the pages frantically. 

“Richie?” Eddie questioned and RIchie shot his head up, his appearance taking Eddie by surprise. He had bloodshot eyes, pale cheeks and his hair was sticking up everywhere. “Richie...you need to rest, please. Come up stairs and sleep, the book will be there tomorrow.”

Richie shook his head, going back to flipping through the pages, “Just- just one more second, I’m almost there.” He mumbled, running a hand through his already messed up curls.

Frowning, Eddie moved a little closer to Richie, wincing at the state of the place. It was a complete disaster. ‘Richie, it’s four am, you’ve been at this for days. Please, go to sleep. For me?”

“I’m fine, Eddie, I promise,” Richie mumbled, reaching a hand up to rub at his tired eyes. “I just...I need to find the right spell.”

“And you will!” Eddie exclaimed, worry for Richie clear in his voice. “But right now you need to sleep before you blow the whole house up.”

Finally, Richie sighed and nodded, stepping away from the book and letting out a loud yawn, “You’re right,” he whispered, sagging his shoulders. “You’re always right, and that’s why I love you.”

“I love you too,” Eddie whispered. Even though they had been saying it for days now, it still made Eddie smile when those words left Richie’s mouth. It made things all too real, even if he was uncertain that Richie would be able to carry out his spell successfully. 

Once Eddie made sure Richie was fast asleep in his bed, he lay down next to him, over the top of the sheets and watched how peaceful he looked. It might have come across as a little creepy, but Eddie simply couldn’t help himself, he loved watching Richie sleep. He smiled a little as Hades jumped up onto the bed and curled into a ball at Richie’s feet. Oh how he wanted to be able to curl up in Richie’s arms with him, to be held by him.

It took another three weeks of stress and wrong spells before Eddie heard a scream of delight coming from the basement. He headed down there quickly, only to see Richie grinning, holding up a page with a spell written on it. “I think I’ve got it Eds. The spell...I think I’ve got it.”

Eddie froze, his eyes wide in hope and a little bit of fear. “Are...are you sure?” he asked, moving closer to read the paper that was written in a language he didn’t understand. 

Richie nodded his head, letting out a long breath, “Yeah- Yeah I think so,” he whispered. “It’s worth a try right?”

With a nod of his head, Eddie agreed with Richie. “Yeah...yeah it’s worth a try.”

For the rest of the day, Richie set up the basement for the spell, lighting candles in certain places and making a circle on the wooden floor of flowers from their garden. It was just after 5am when he was finished and he looked up at Eddie with a wide and hopeful smile on his face. “If you may...step into the circle for me?”

Slowly, Eddie moved so he was inside the circle of flowers and candles, Richie standing just outside of it with the page in his hand. Eddie watched as Richie took a deep breath and started muttering the words written on the page, over and over. The candles started to flicker and Eddie felt a strange sensation in his gut, which he wasn’t sure was a good sign or a bad sign.

The more Richie chanted, the more pale his face became, and Eddie could see a small trickle of blood appear from his nose. If he didn’t know that interrupting a spell could prove dangerous, Eddie would have begged Richie to stop, as he seemed to be having a lot of difficulty.

Just at that moment, the lights in the room began to flicker and all the candles in the room blew out, causing Richie to collapse to the ground in a heap. Panicked, and not caring if the spell had worked or not, Eddie left the circle and rushed over to him. “Richie!” When there was no response, Eddie tried again. “Richie?! Wake up!”

A groan left Richie’s lips as he opened his eyes, wiping the blood from his nose. He sat up and looked at Eddie, his eyes widening as a smile appeared on his face. “You- you’re cheeks…they’re red.” He moved onto his knees and Eddie froze in shock as Richie reached a hand up, cupping his cheek, initiating skin on skin contact for the first time. 

“Oh my god,” Eddie breathed, his eyes filling with tears as his heart thumped in his chest. His heart . “I’m...I’m crying, I’m breathing. Oh my god.”

Richie was crying too, tears of joy spilling down over his cheeks, “You’re here...you’re alive. Fuck baby…” He moved his hand down to lace their fingers together and Eddie almost burst into tears right then and there. Finally...after so long of wanting to touch Richie, he finally could. 

With a grin, Richie moved his other hand up to cup the back of Eddie’s neck, pulling him down into a long awaited first kiss, keeping it short and sweet. Their lips only just grazed each other, both too scared to let go and just feel. As they pulled away, Eddie let out a breath, wiping his eyes, “Oh my god...I love you.”

“I love you too, baby,” Richie breathed back, pressing their foreheads together. “I love you too.”

The happiness in the household however didn’t last, as the clock from the upstairs hallway chimed to say it was six in the morning, and, on the sixth chime, Eddie’s human skin faded and he was right back to being a ghost. “W-What?”

Richie panicked, his eyes frantically running over Eddie as he tried to figure out what happened. “No, no what the fuck, this wasn’t supposed to happen. You were supposed to stay human! Not just be human for an hour!” Richie started flipping through the pages of the spellbook. 

“Richie,” Eddie whispered, trying not to let his hurt and disappointment show. “Richie stop, it’s okay. We had our moment and I am never ever going to forget it,” he smiled, but inside he was hurting like hell.

"No, it's not okay! I want you back!  I need you back!" Richie said, slamming a hand down on the book.

All Eddie could do was watch as Richie flipped through the pages of the book, searching for an answer that he would probably never find. This went on for hours, and Eddie was trying to think of something that would make Richie stop, when the door knocked and the sound of Richie’s friend Stan echoed down to the basement. 

“Richie, it’s Stan! Get your ass out here, we’re going to see a movie!” He called through the letterbox. “And I’m not taking no for an answer.”

“I can’t!” Richie called back, anger in his voice at being interrupted. “I’m busy. Another night.”

“What did I just say? I’m not taking no for an answer, you’ve been locked in your house for days,” Stan hissed and walked in, heading down to the basement.  “God this place is a mess. Get dressed. Now.”

Richie looked up at Eddie, who gave him a silent nod of approval and then at Stan. He sighed and stood up. "Fine, okay. Let's go out."

As soon as Richie was out of the house, Eddie curled up on the sofa and sighed. It felt so good to be able to be human again, he just wished that it lasted longer. He wanted to be able to cuddle with Richie, to cook and hold hands and leave the god damn house. As the day wore on and turned into night, the clock chimed, letting Eddie know it was 10pm. Then, just like he had done earlier that morning, he was alive again, filled with human emotion and a beating heart.  “What the fuck?” 

Confusion flooded him and he looked around the house frantically. Richie was gone, and he had no idea when he was going to be back, and he was standing in their living room, human. Where the fuck was Richie when he needed him? 

Just as he thought that, the front door opened and Richie walked in, carrying a box of chinese takeout. He looked up and the second his eyes landed on Eddie, the food was dropped to the floor, his mouth parted in shock. “Eds?”

“I have no idea what’s happening right now but I’m not complaining,” Eddie burst out and lunged  himself forward into Richie’s arms, wrapping his legs around his waist, leaning down to bring their lips together in a much more heated kiss than the one they had shared in the basement earlier that day.

Not wasting any of the short time they had, Richie spun them around, his hands settling on Eddie’s ass as he pushed him against the wall, kissing him deeply, licking into his mouth. Eddie let it happen, wanting to taste, to feel all of Richie while he could. He moved his hands into Richie’s hair and tugged on the curls, something he had been desperate to do since the moment they met. 

“Richie,” Eddie panted as the kiss broke, Richie’s lips moving down over his jaw and to his neck, sucking gently. “I-I think the spell worked...just, not permanently…” 

Richie pulled away and looked up at him. "I'll find a way to make it work, I promise." He brushed his thumb over Eddie’s cheekbones, smiling wide, “God, you’re so beautiful…”

Eddie flushed at the compliment, ducking his head a little before looking back up. “I can live with this,” he whispered. “I can live with being able to have you for...just a little while.”

"No, that's not fair, I can't- I can't let you go through this every day." Richie shook his head. "I'll fix it."

Eddie tugged Richie back onto another kiss, that is until the smell of the Chinese food hit his nose. “I hate to be a downer but...I’m dying to taste that Chinese food.”

Richie barked out a laugh and let Eddie drop to his feet, picking up the box and taking Eddie’s hand, leading him into the kitchen, sitting the food on the table. “Of course, anything for you.”

As soon as the tub opened, Eddie didn’t hesitate to simply grab a fork and dig in, not waiting until the food was issued onto the plates. He let out a groan at the flavour exploded in his mouth and he swallowed, taking another mouthful, “This is amazing!”

“Right? Best thing ever,” Richie grinned, not hungry himself anymore, so he settled for just watching Eddie with soft eyes. 

Once he was finished, Eddie pushed the tray away and climbed into Richie’s lap, “I don’t want to waste any more time,” he whispered. 

Richie put his hands on Eddie's hips, rubbing at the skin over his shirt, and looked up at him, licking his lips. "What do you want to do?"

Eddie leaned in to whisper in Richie’s ear, trying to be as seductive as possible, but probably failing miserably, “I want you to show me how good it feels to be with someone,” he breathed. “You’ve told me, now show me.”

In one movement, Richie wrapped his arms around Eddie and stood up, carrying him in his arms up the stairs to their bedroom. He kissed Eddie once, then twice before setting him down on the bed and slowly helping him out of his clothes. Once Eddie was naked, Richie quickly pulled his own clothes off and climbed onto the bed, kneeling between Eddie’s legs. 

“Are you sure, love?” Richie asked, his hand caressing the skin of Eddie’s knee. Eddie nodded and Richie leaned down, giving him another deep kiss. “I’m going to make you feel so good baby.”

Eddie settled back on the bed, letting out small puffs of breath as Richie grabbed the lube, squeezing it onto his fingers and bringing them down between his legs. He took his time, stretching him open, making sure that it was the single most pleasurable experience that Eddie had ever felt, and by god was it. The feeling of Richie stretching him open, his fingers sliding in and out and brushing against his prostate made Eddie moan, his body arching up in pleasure as his fingers gripped the bed sheets.

“I’m ready Rich…” Eddie breathed, cheeks flushed and eyelids almost completely shut in bliss. Richie took note, pulling his fingers out and reaching for a condom, but Eddie stopped him, shaking his head. “I want to feel you. Please?”

Richie nodded his head, pressing their foreheads together as he lined up, slowly pushing inside Eddie, inch by inch until he was fully bottomed out. He stopped, allowing Eddie the time to adjust before he slowly started thrusting. Richie kept his pace slow at first, not wanting to hurt Eddie but going to fast, but soon the blonde was squirming, his hips rolling. Faster. 

Eddie remembered his mother telling him how sex was awful and dirty, but right then, with Richie thrusting into him and bringing him closer and closer to the point of ecstasy, he had no idea why she would think this was wrong. “I’m- I’m so close Richie…” he panted out, bringing Richie down for another kiss.

“Come for me darling,” Richie breathed against his lips, his thrusts becoming erratic as he edged closer to his own release. Eddie gasped at the words and a few thrusts later he was arching off of the bed, his body going taught as a bow string as he came all over their stomachs. 

“Oh- Oh fuck Richie,” Eddie gasped and Richie leaned down to suck a mark onto Eddie’s neck as he reached his own climax, spilling himself into Eddie as his body went stiff. As the orgasm faded, Richie collapsed forward, barely holding himself up so he didn’t crush Eddie beneath him.

“Baby...are you okay?” He asked, leaning down to brush some of Eddie’s blonde curls out of his face. Eddie looked up, a fucked out expression on his face. He was more than okay. 

“Okay? I’m on cloud nine, Richie…” Eddie mumbled. “I love you.” Richie hummed, pulling out and immediately grabbing some wet wipes to clean up their mess. Once they were tidy and back in some clothes, he pulled Eddie between his arms and he sighed back against Richie’s chest. “Been wanting this for so long,” he breathed. 

Richie pressed a kiss to Eddie’s hair, the need to sleep overtaking him, “Love you too, baby. I’m gonna fix it, I’ll make it permanent.”

As Richie fell asleep, Eddie did too. He only woke up when the clock chimed six, and he was back to being a ghost. He sighed and slipped out of the bed, taking a seat on a chair next to the bed where Richie was still fast asleep.

It was a few hours later when Richie woke up, and Eddie watched him patting the bed next to him as he opened his eyes, “Eds?”

“I’m right here, Richie,” Eddie whispered, letting Richie know that he hadn’t left the room. He wanted to cry at the sad look on Richie’s face, the disappointment clear. 

Richie reached forward, trying to touch Eddie, but to no avail, “I have to figure this out. I have to.”

“How?” Eddie asked, tilting his head to the side.

“I’ll ask for help,” Richie breathed. “There's a witch. No one knows where she lives, but sometimes she answers calls. I could try and summon her." Richie said, looking up at him. "It is said that she's the most powerful witch of our time."

Eddie frowned, but remained a little hopeful, “Do you think she’ll help us?” He asked.

“I don’t know, but it certainly won’t hurt to try,” Richie climbed out of bed and lit a few candles in the room. “Just...stay quiet okay?” Eddie nodded and Richie started to chant something in what Eddie could only assume was Latin. The candles flickered a little as RIchie spoke, and when he stopped everything went still.

Silence.

“I guess it didn’t work?” Eddie whispered. “What else-”

He was cut off by a new voice. “Well it has been a long time since someone tried to summon me that way.” Eddie and Richie spun around to face a woman, with short red hair, wearing all black and a smile on her lips. “Beverly Marsh, at your service. Now, what can I do for you Richie Tozier and Eddie Kaspbrak?

Chapter Text

Eddie had heard of witches before, but he had always imagined that they would look...not like Beverly Marsh did. She was tall with short red hair that reached just under her ears. The black dress she was wearing sat neatly at her knees and her lips were painted an almost blood red. She was beautiful, Eddie couldn’t deny that. 

“Well? Are you boys just going to stand there and stare at me or are you going to tell me what it is you need?” Beverly asked and Eddie turned to Richie with an almost panicked look on his face. This was real, this was happening. “As I said, it’s been a long time since someone summoned me this way, most of the time they just call me.” As Beverly spoke, her heels clicked on their wooden floor. 

Richie chose that moment to finally speak up, taking a step closer to Beverly, “I wasn’t sure you’d answer me if I called. This way, you don’t have a choice.” He swallowed. “I know you already know my name, but I’m Richie.”

Beverly pursed her lips, looking him up and down, “Yes, I know who you are. You’re the warlock from New York who moved to Derry to get some peace to practice your skills.” She turned to Eddie. “You ended up with a ghost for a roommate, how sweet.”

“I want to bring him back,” Richie explained, finally revealing the reason for bringing Beverly to their home. “Please, I tried but...but it didn’t work, at least not permanently. Please Beverly I need your help.”

At those words, Beverly took a step back, shaking her head and letting out a disbelieving laugh, “You want to bring him back from the dead? Are you mad?” She asked. “I’m sorry but I don’t do that.” She turned to leave but Richie lurched forward and wrapped a hand around her wrist. 

“Beverly, please...I’m desperate,” Richie begged, his eyes filling with tears. “I love him, please. Maybe- maybe if we put our forces together then...then we can make it work. Please?”

Beverly paused, looking back and forth between Richie and then over to Eddie. It was as though she was staring right into his soul and Eddie couldn’t help but back away a little. “You don’t understand, Richie,” she started, pinching her nose with her perfectly manicured nails. “Bringing someone back from the dead is dangerous. If I do this, someone from the living has to die in order to keep the balance between life and death.”

At this, Richie nodded his head, suddenly understanding why his spell didn’t work completely. “A soul for a soul,” he breathed. “I love him, Beverly.”

“Richie I-” Eddie piped up and crossed over to where the two magical beings were standing. “I can’t let anyone die for me. I can’t. That’s not fair and you know it.”

Richie turned to Eddie, his expression deadly serious, “I’d die for you,” he breathed and he turned to Beverly. “I’ll do it. I’ll give my soul in exchange for his. He- he deserves to live.”

“Absolutely not! What’s the point in that?!” Eddie snapped. “Not a chance. I’m putting my foot down, Richie. No.” He couldn’t believe what he was hearing, what Richie was even suggesting! “No!”

"Well someone has to go!" Richie argued back,  throwing his arms into the air. "I promised you I was going to bring you back and I will!" 

Beverly slammed her heel down on the floor, stopping their arguing, “That’s enough!” She snapped. “Richie, you won’t be exchanging your soul for Eddie’s, that is final.” She turned to Eddie. “There is another option.”

At Beverly’s expression, Eddie felt a strange feeling in his gut and he moved a little closer to the witch, “What- what is it?”

“Eddie was murdered, by his mother’s hand,” Beverly explained calmly. “I will agree to perform the spell, if the soul that is in exchange for Eddie’s is his mother’s.” She looked at both of the boys, “I can give you both some time to think it over.”

Take his mother’s life in exchange for his? Eddie sat down in the corner of the room, his mind running over all the things she did to him, all the times she put poison in his food to make him sicker and sicker. The way she would hit him if he spoke out of line, or even refuse to feed him if he was being particularly difficult. She was a terrible person, and an even terrible mother. There was no reason that she should deserve to live and Eddie to continue to rot in the grave in the back garden. He looked up to see Richie staring at him, kneeling in front of him with a concerned expression. 

“Eds?” Richie breathed, wanting to hold his hand but knowing that he couldn’t. Not yet at least. “Talk to me.”

Eddie swallowed, “Won’t me killing her make me just as bad?” He asked quietly. “Won’t that just level out my right to live?”

Beverly chose that moment to step forward, “If you are unsure that you are worthy...I can use my powers to decide for myself?” She asked. “You just...have to let me see into your past, if that is okay with you?”

That took Eddie by surprise, but slowly, he nodded his head. If someone could see into his past, actually see for themselves what happened to him, then maybe he could be convinced that his mother’s life in exchange for his would be the right thing to do. Maybe it would help calm his conscience down a bit. “Can Richie see too? I want him to see too.”

With a nod, Beverly offered her hand to Richie, who took it without a blink of hesitation. “Close your eyes,” she instructed Eddie and he did, closing his eyelids and swallowing. A shock ran through his body as he felt Beverly’s hand on his forehead and then...then he was falling....

* * * * *

“Eddie-bear, dinner is ready!” The voice of his mother made Eddie snap his eyes open. Dred filled his body as he realised he was back in his room, still fully decorated with all his belongings and right there, looking like death itself, was Eddie himself. In the corner to his right, Beverly and Richie stood, Richie’s eyes wide as he realised what he was about to witness. 

The bedroom door swung open and his mother walked in, all three hundred and fifty pounds of her. Eddie wanted to vomit as all the memories came flooding back as though they never left. He knew what was in that soup in her hand, and he only wished he could scream out to his past self, to tell him to stop eating it. This wasn’t the past though, all this was was a memory. 

“Mommy I’m not really hungry,” Eddie spoke quietly from the bed, his voice weak and tired. “I really just want to sleep mommy. Please?”

His mother scoffed and sat the tray of soup on the chest of drawers before stalking over to him, getting all up in his personal space. Eddie could still smell the cigarette smoke and sweat from her as though it had just happened. “Eddie bear why do you hurt mommy like this, hm?” She asked, combing her dirty fingers through his damp curls. “I slave away all afternoon, making you this soup and you tell me you’re not hungry? I didn’t raise you to be disrespectful Eddie.” She snapped, her voice becoming harsh. 

“N-No mommy I- I didn’t mean-” Eddie tried to explain but his mother cut him off by sitting the tray on his lap. She grabbed the spoon from the bowl and brought it to Eddie’s lips, pinching his nose so he would open his mouth. Eddie turned his head and Richie’s eyes widened in horror at the scene. Past Eddie opened his mouth to breath and his mother shoved the spoon in, forcing him to swallow. 

The whole act continued until there was no soup left and his mother finally let him go. Eddie watched his younger self sob hysterically, his face already turning grey as the poisoned soup entered his digestive system. He took that moment to look at the date and his heart sank. This was the day. In less than ten minutes, Eddie would be on the floor, stone cold dead. 

It seemed that Beverly and Richie also knew what was about to take place, as Eddie could see tears stream down Richie’s face and a stray tear escape Beverly’s eye, only for her to wipe it away fast. Eddie on the bed immediately started to gag, his eyes bloodshot red as a trickle of blood fell from his nose. 

“Mommy- I don’t feel so good,” he whimpered, reaching out with his small hands to grab his mother’s shirt. Instead of pulling her son close, she pushed him away, standing up onto her feet, tray in hand. 

“Don’t be ridiculous, Eddie. You’re a terrible actor,” She spat and moved to the door. Eddie, in an attempt to get help, lurched forward and stumbled out of the bed. The action caused all the bile that had been settling in his stomach to rise to the surface, and he vomited all over the floor. “Eddie!”

He couldn’t stop vomiting and the more sickness he brought up, the more blood became mixed with it. His eyes were red now and the blood from his nose was streaming down in thick waves. “M-Mommy-” He croaked out, in one last ditch attempt for her to save him.

Instead, she just closed the door, leaving her son to die. 

Eddie had to turn his head away as he heard himself take one final breath and then...nothing. Silence filled the room apart from Richie’s sobs. “What the fuck!” Richie cried out, looking at Beverly and then at Eddie. “What the fuck!”

Beverly swallowed, her eyes looking as though she were about to say something, but she remained silent. They all did. It was a long time before Eddie’s mother returned to the room to find her son dead on the floor. She paused, looking at the mess before she grunted and left the room once more, returning with a black bag and a mop. 

“Bev-” Richie spoke up. “Please no- I can’t.”

“We have to,” Bev whispered. “We have to see it all.” She breathed and just like that, they were no longer in Eddie’s bedroom, but out in the garden. 

Eddie’s mother was digging the hole at the back of the garden, grunting as she did so. The grave was so shallow, that Eddie had to wonder why no-one realised that there was a body there. Maybe everyone in Derry really were just...idiots. 

Once she had finished digging, his mother disappeared back into the house, and Eddie watched Richie tense up as she returned with the black bag that so very clearly contained Eddie’s dead body. She dumped it into the pit and filled it up before returning to the house. Eddie remembered watching all this as a ghost, watching as his mother dumped his dead body into the ground as if he were nothing. 

Beverly was right, seeing the whole thing back did make him feel a whole lot better about what he was about to do. 

Eddie closed his eyes and just like that, he was back in the house, in the present day. He opened his eyes as the sound of retching reached his ears and he whimpered as Richie threw up into a nearby plant pot. “What the fuck- okay I’m sorry it’s one thing to hear about how the love of your life died but to actually see it? Jesus fucking christ.” 

Beverly kneeled down in front of Eddie, a sad expression on her face. “Are you alright?” She asked and slowly, Eddie nodded his head.

“What do we do?”

* * * * *

It took some time for Richie to calm down enough so they could go over the ins and outs of the spell. Once he was feeling a little better, Beverly explained that all she needed to perform the spell was Eddie’s body from the grave and a drop of his mother’s blood. 

“How are we meant to get that?” Eddie asked. “She lives in Bangor with her sister now...at least that’s where she went when she left here. I don’t know if they still live there or not.”

Beverly closed her eyes for a brief moment before she opened them, “She does,” she nodded her head. “I’m not sure how you go about getting the blood, but all I need is a drop. A single drop.”

“I’ll go,” Richie spoke up. “I’ll go find her and...prick her finger or some shit, when she’s sleeping. She won’t even know I’m there.”

Eddie was hesitant, but he trusted Richie with his life. He knew, deep down, that Richie wouldn’t do anything stupid to risk fucking this up. It was their only chance. He gave Richie the address and stared into his eyes. “Be careful, please?”

“I promise,” Richie swore. “When I get back, we’ll be one more step to our happily ever after.” He breathed. “When all this is done, I’m getting you the fuck out of here. We’re going to see the world.”

With one final look, Richie nodded to the two of them and he was gone. Eddie let out a shaky breath and turned to Bev, “Does that mean you have the pleasure of digging up my body?”

Beverly cackled at that and nodded her head, waving her wrist to produce a pair of gloves. “Looks like it.” They made their way out into the garden, and Beverly got down onto her knees with Eddie at her side. “You two are crazy, you know that right?”

“I love him,” Eddie whispered. “I never got the chance to live when I was alive and when Richie moved in he just...he’s everything to me and I just want to have a life with him.”

"Which is understandable, but Richie should know better. He's a warlock, he knows how dangerous it is to mess with the dead." Bev said, then sighed. "I guess he must love you dearly."

She started digging, Eddie biting his lip as he watched, continuing their conversation as a distraction. “I don’t want to say that he does, because I don’t know, but I hope he does.” Eddie said quietly. “Will this work?”

Bev looked up as the shovel she had in her hand collided with a black plastic bag. She swallowed. “If Richie brings back the blood, it will. If not, then it won’t.” She sat the shovel to the side and carefully leaned down to pick the back up out of the grave, her eyes filling with tears. They carried it into the house and sat it down in the middle of the floor as Bev set up the circle for the spell. 

The wait for Richie to return was agonising. Eddie kept imagining the worst and every noise outside had him looking to see if it was Richie. Finally though, the front door opened and Richie stepped in, his arm bandaged up and traces of blood evident. 

“Richie!” Eddie cried, rushing over but stopping a few feet away. He was still in ghost form, so they couldn't touch. “What- What happened?”

Richie frowned and then looked at his arm, “Oh this? I cut myself on a shard of glass and had to make a trip to the hospital first,” he chuckled nervously. “Silly me.”

“Did you get it?” Bev asked. 

Richie smiled wide, pulling out the small vial with some blood in it. “The bitch didn’t even know I was there.” 

Bev nodded, “Alright, then this should be easy.” She took the vial from Richie’s hand and opened it up, pouring blood into a cup that she held in her two hands. She closed her eyes and started whispered a chant under her breath. The same words over and over again but Eddie couldn’t quite make out what they were. Unlike before, the house wasn’t shaking, in fact, it remained perfectly still. The only thing that moved was the cup in Bev’s hand as it began to bubble. 

Just as fast as Bev had started, she stopped and opened her eyes, looking directly at Eddie. Slowly, she tilted the cup, allowing some of its contents to pour over Eddie’s remains and then passed the cup to Eddie. He frowned, taking it in his hands. “What- what do I do?”

Bev just smiled, “Drink.” Without a moment’s hesitation, Eddie swallowed the contents of the cup, gagging at the taste. He remained as still as still could be as Beverly poured some rock salt into her hand and stepped towards him. “Close your eyes.” 

Eddie did, he let his eyes drift closed as Beverly blew the rock salt in his direction. He felt the pressure of some of the fragments hitting his face and then...darkness.

* * * * * 

Eddie! 

Eddie!

“Eddie!” Eddie opened his eyes, wide and panicked, only to meet the worried ones of Richie, who was staring at him with tears in his eyes. “Oh thank fuck,” he breathed. “You scared me!”

Eddie frowned, his head spinning as he slowly came to his senses. He felt different, way different and it took him longer than he was proud of to realise that Richie had a hand on his shoulder. “Rich? You- you’re touching me.”

Richie nodded his head, more tears in his eyes, “It worked baby,” he breathed. “You- you’re alive. For real this time.”

“I- I am?” Eddie asked, tears filling in his own eyes as he patted down his body. He felt alive. His skin was warm, his heart beating in his chest. “I’m alive, oh- oh my god.” He launched himself at Richie, knocking the warlock onto his back and, without looking to see if Beverly was still there, he pulled him into a kiss. 

“Woah baby,” Richie breathed against his lips, but kissed him back anyway, a laugh bubbling up in his chest. “Easy, you’re going to be weak for a while until you get adjusted.”

At Richie’s words, Eddie became aware of his bones and his muscles...or more importantly how much they ached . “Oh- it’s been so long since I’ve felt pain. Is it weird that I’ve missed it?” He asked and Richie shook his head, brushing his hair away from his face. “Is Bev?”

“I’m right here,” Beverly spoke up, walking over to where they were sitting. “How are you feeling?” She asked. 

Eddie closed his eyes before opening them again, “I feel alive and...and really tired and...and hungry. I’m hungry.”

Bev laughed, ruffling his hair, “I’m sure Richie here will be able to sort you out. I’ll keep in touch but right now I really need to be on my way.” She kissed his cheek. “Take care of yourself now, yeah? You’ve got that second chance.”

With that said, Bev simply vanished and Eddie leaned forward to cling onto Richie. He felt them move and laughed as Richie picked him up into his arms, bridal style. “I love you so much, Eddie Kaspbrak,” he breathed. “And I can’t wait to spend the rest of my life with you.”

Life. Eddie now had a life. A life with endless possibilities. A future. With Richie. He leaned in and kissed Richie once more, firmly on the lips. 

“I can’t fucking wait.”

Chapter Text

“Eduardo! Andale! Let’s go!” 

Eddie hastily zipped up the last bag that had to go in the trunk of the car and called back down the stairs to his impatient boyfriend, “I’m just coming!” He quickly hooked the bag over his shoulder and gave the room one last look before he headed to the stairs. “I was just making sure we had everything. Also...will Hades be alright without us?”

Richie stood by the door, tapping his foot and he reached for the bag the moment Eddie made it to the bottom step. He leaned in for a quick kiss, “He’s with Bev remember? He’ll be just fine. You know, we’ve been packing for weeks, love. If there is anything we’ve missed, then it clearly isn’t all that important and can be replaced.”

He knew his boyfriend was right, but Eddie was always a worrier, he didn’t want to leave behind anything important. “I know, I know,” he breathed, wrapping his arms around Richie’s neck, pushing up on his tiptoes. “Can you believe we’re really doing this?”

“Believe what? That we’re leaving this hell house and going to explore the world?” Richie asked, nudging their noses together. It had become somewhat of a habit between them, ever since Eddie was officially brought back to life two months ago. The need to touch each other, the need to be reminded that they could was still fresh in their minds. 

Eddie hummed, nodding his head, “I mean, this is a huge step. I know I’ve been out and about over the past two months but this is...this is leaving Derry. I’ve never been outside of Derry before.” He looked at the car, packed and ready to go. “I’m nervous.”

Hands cupped his cheeks, turning Eddie’s face back so his eyes could lock with Richies, “There is nothing to be nervous about. You are finally going to see the world that you’ve only heard about. I’m going to take you to London, Paris, Venice, Beijing, Sydney! Anywhere you want to go, I’ll take you there.”

“I love you,” Eddie whispered, pressing his lips to Richie’s in a soft kiss. “So much.”

“I love you too, sweetheart,” Richie hummed. “And as much as I would love to keep doing this, sadly we need to hop it or we’ll miss our flights.”

Eddie giggled and let Richie step away first, carrying the bag to the car and closing the trunk. He stepped out onto the porch and looked up at his home...his prison. He was ready to say goodbye to it and never look back. He turned away and looked back down at Richie, who was waiting for him by the car. Slowly, he closed the door and locked it, pocketing the keys as he ran down the porch to start his new life with Richie by his side. 

* * * * *

Eddie thought that the scariest thing to ever happen to him was being poisoned by his mother and buried in his back garden. That is, until he stepped foot on an airplane. He had no idea why it was deemed safe to pack hundreds of people into a tin can and fly them 34,000 feet in the air. It just didn’t seem right!

His whole body was shaking before he even stepped a foot into the cabin, his palms sweaty as he clung to Richie for dear life. Richie, the asshole that he was, found it all incredibly amusing but didn’t complain about being able to hold his boyfriend close and comfort him. 

“Are- are you sure there isn’t another way we can travel?” Eddie asked for the millionth time as they stood in line to board the plane. He was holding Richie’s hand in one, and his passport that Richie had acquired for him in the other. He didn’t ask questions about that. 

Richie just laughed and pulled him to his side, wrapping an arm tight around Eddie’s waist. “I told you, the only other way to get to Europe is by boat, and you almost threw up when I told you we’d be on a large ship on the atlantic ocean for at least a week!”

At the mention of the boat, Eddie felt himself turning green and he shook his head. “A tin can 34,000 feet in the air it is then.” They were called forward just then and the stewardess looked at their boarding passes and passports before allowing them to board. 

Since it was Eddie’s first time on a plane, Richie had bought them first class tickets. He thought it would save both Eddie, and the other passengers, the hassle of dealing with any more stress than necessary. Anyway, it was a long haul flight, and Eddie wanted to be as comfortable as he could be. 

The stewardess on the plane smiled as she glanced at their tickets and lead them to their seats, showing them how to move the chairs and even bring down the bed if they chose to lay down. Eddie stared at it in shock, waiting until she was gone before he whispered, “It’s like a hotel...but in the sky!”

“It certainly is baby,” Richie grinned as he sat down in the comfortable seat, tugging Eddie into his lap. “You know, there are ways that I can distract you from the thought of being so high in the sky,” he breathed, nibbling on Eddie’s earlobe, making him squeak. 

“Richie!” Eddie gasped, his cheeks turning a light shade of red, “We’re on a plane! There- there are people around!”

Richie pouted and crossed his arms, “Hmf, so much for crossing the Mile High Club off my bucket list.”

Eddie didn’t even bother asking about what Richie meant by that, as he knew it couldn’t be anything decent for a public plane. 

* * * * *

London was...busy. 

From the moment they stepped off the plane in London Heathrow, it was go go go. They were on a bus, then a train and then another bus to take them to the hotel. Everything was big and fast and Eddie could barely keep up. That didn’t mean that Eddie didn’t love the place, in fact, he really loved it. 

He loved the fact that he could walk down the street and people wouldn’t stare at him because they had no business too. He loved that he could hold hands with Richie and kiss him whenever he wanted and no-one batted an eyelid. It was like a whole new world. 

The first thing they did when they arrived in the city...was fuck. Richie had been really horny and Eddie well...Eddie was a little desperate himself thanks to all Richie’s touching and teasing throughout the flight. By the time they were both thoroughly sated, it was well after midnight, GMT, and Eddie passed out from exhaustion. 

The days that followed consisted of trips to all the tourist attractions. The London Eye, Big Ben, Westminster, Tower of London, Trafalgar Square...everything that was worth seeing, Eddie and Richie were there seeing it. They even managed to get tickets to see the Lion King on the West End. 

It was late on their way back to the hotel, Eddie resting his head on Richie’s shoulder as they walked across the bridge towards the tube stations that would take them back to the hotel. They were heading to Paris the following afternoon, and they had to be up early to head to the airport. 

“Are you enjoying yourself?” Richie asked, pressing a kiss to Eddie’s hair. He looked up, meeting Richie’s eyes. “I mean, are you glad we did this?”

Eddie tilted his head to the side, “You mean, am I glad we left Derry and came to Europe?” He asked and Richie nodded. “Of course I am, god Richie...I never thought I’d ever get to leave that house again but you...you made that happen and I am so so happy. I am enjoying myself very much and I can’t wait to see the rest of the world with you by my side.”

Richie pulled them to a stop and wrapped his arms around Eddie’s waist, lifting him off the ground a little as he brought their lips together in a deep kiss. Eddie wrapped his own arms around Richie’s neck, tugging on his hair and pulling him closer. They kissed and kissed until their lips were swollen, but that only made them kiss some more.

They were broken apart by Richie’s phone pinging with an incoming message. He frowned and pulled it out, keeping Eddie close and he barked out a laugh, turning his phone so Eddie could see it. 

You guys are gross. Get a room, I can smell your love from here. - Bev

“Bev says hi?” Eddie giggled and they continued their way back to the hotel.

* * * * *

Contrary to popular belief, Paris is actually nicknamed the city of lights, not the city of love. As Eddie looked out over the city from the top viewing platform of the Eiffel Tower, he could see why. The view was, in no other words, breathtaking. 

It was nighttime in Paris and Richie had held off taking Eddie up the Eiffel Tower until this specific moment on their last night in the city. Eddie had no idea why, but he was so very glad that Richie convinced him to save the best attraction until last. He could see all the lights for miles, lighting up the sky perfectly and he leaned on the barrier, exhaling happily. 

“What do you think?” Richie asked after a moment, moving to stand next to Eddie. “Amazing, isn’t it?”

Eddie nodded his head, closing his eyes before he turned to face Richie. “It really is,” he whispered. “I wish I could stay right here in this moment, forever. Up here, with this view, with you.”

“You’re so cheesy, Kaspbrak,” Richie grinned and kissed his nose, turning to look back out at the view. “We can stay up here as long as you want, we have no other plans tonight.”

They fell into a comfortable silence, just...enjoying the moment and the view as much as they could. Eddie pulled out the camera that Richie had bought him, snapping a few pictures of the city lights, wanting to keep them captured forever as he wasn’t sure when he’d be back there. It was after a while that Eddie realised Richie was still silent beside him and he turned around, his eyes widening. 

Richie was staring at him and pinched between his thumb and forefinger, was a ring. 

Time seemed to slow down to a halt as Richie met his eyes, smiling softly. He stepped back and moved down onto one knee, holding the ring up for Eddie to see. The action had caught the attention of the other people on the platform, and they were all staring, waiting for something to happen.

“Eds,” Richie breathed. “I love you. I’ve been in love with you since the moment I met you, and I know that seems insane but it’s true. We’ve...we’ve been through a lot in our relationship but now, now everything is finally looking up and I don’t want to waste any more time not...not being with you in every way possible.” He paused, taking a breath. “I love you, so, Eddie Kaspbrak…will you marry me?”

Tears had formed in Eddie’s eyes as Richie spoke and he slowly nodded his head, his words caught in his throat. It wasn’t until Richie had slipped the ring onto his finger and pulled him into a bone crushing hug that he found his voice. “Yes! Yes, yes yes, of course I’ll marry you.”

Richie pulled back, cupping Eddie’s cheeks in his large hands, “I’m going to take care of you, Eds. I love you so much and we’re going to be so fucking happy together.” He didn’t wait for Eddie to reply, he just pulled them in for a kiss as the onlookers clapped in celebration of their engagement. 

Engagement. Eddie was engaged. 

“I love you,” Eddie croaked as he pulled away from the kiss. “I fucking love you.”

Just like Richie said, they were going to be so fucking happy. Together. For the rest of their lives.