Follow TV Tropes

Following

Fanfic / The Bedside Ghost

Go To

https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/bedside_ghost_by_ximsol.png
Artwork created by tumblr user ximsol182

Mexico City, 1942. The bell falls but, instead of waking up in the Land of the Dead, Ernesto de la Cruz finds himself with a broken spine - and an unwanted guest at his bedside who claims he can let him have the sweet release of death, if he gives back what he took from him. And, in 1947, Coco receives a letter...
Advertisement:

The Bedside Ghost by Pengychan is a fanfic based on Pixar's Coco. The story is an alternate universe where Ernesto de la Cruz is crippled instead of dying when the bell falls on him in 1942. Plagued with visions of a ghostly Héctor, Ernesto decides write a letter to Imelda, hoping to give her some closure so the ghost would leave him alone. Instead, he comes to face with an adult Coco Rivera searching for answers about her lost father...

Has a prequel story, named The Heaven And Earth Series and an alternate story based on the canon continuity named Down To Dust.

Advertisement:

Tropes in The Bedside Ghost include:

  • Alternate Universe: Ernesto was crippled instead of being killed by the bell, like in canon. And since Ernesto reveals the truth about Héctor's death much sooner, the music ban is lifted around the time Elena is born and Héctor isn't being forgotten.
  • The Atoner: Ernesto wants to give closure to Imelda and Coco about Héctor's death. However, his reasons are selfish, as he wants the "ghost of Héctor" to stop pestering him. Coco finds out in Chapter 9 and rightfully calls him out about it.
  • Bi the Way: Ernesto at one point casually admits to having had sexual encounters with men as well as women. Griselda is not happy to learn this, though she's much more upset about the whole murderer thing.
  • Bittersweet Ending: The Rivera family know the truth about Héctor's dissappearance and they get closure by finding his corpse and retrieving his songbook and guitar. Héctor is not being forgotten anymore and can now visit his family every Dia de Muertos, but he's devastated after finding out his best friend murdered him. And Ernesto is now alone and under a fake identity, but he is at least no longer paralyzed or plagued by his guilt-fueled delusions.
  • Continuity Nod: To the author's prequel fic, "The Heaven And Earth Series" and the alternate continuity Down To Dust.
      Advertisement:
    • Coco called Ernesto "Tío Neto" when she was young. Similarly, Héctor used to call him "Neto" when he was a toddler and couldn't pronounce Ernesto's name correctly.
    • Ernesto briefly mentions how when Héctor was alive, he and Imelda tricked Ernesto into babysitting Coco and he sang very inappropriate songs to her out of spite. Which is a Noodle Incident in Down to Dust.
    • Anita, the matriarch of the underground alebrije fighting ring from Down to Dust is mentioned by Héctor in the land of the dead.
    • When Ernesto arrives at the land of the dead, he uses the fake name "Esteban García", which is his father's name and mother's surname.
  • Deathbed Confession: Once she learns of Ernesto's crime, Griselda, a devout Catholic, urges Ernesto to do this with a priest before it is too late. While he does speak to the priest Griselda calls to give him last rites, she (and the reader) is not privy to their talk, and Word of God confirmed that he did not confess to Héctor's murder.
  • Death Seeker: Ernesto wants to die, having been crippled by the bell and unable to play music, but believes the "ghost of Héctor" won't let him die. So he decides to give closure to the Rivera family about Héctor's death so he'll be allowed to die in peace.
  • Et Tu, Brute?: When Ernesto tells the real Héctor that he poisoned him. Poor Héctor goes from laughing it off in disbelief to denial to breaking down in anger and grief before screaming at Ernesto that he never wants to see him again.
  • Entitled to Have You / Disproportionate Retribution: The reason why Ernesto murdered Héctor: Because Héctor decided to stand up to Ernesto and put his own wishes (to return with Imelda and Coco) instead of what Ernesto wanted for him (to continuing being a musical duo). Ernesto considered this a horribly cruel act of betrayal that Héctor had to be killed for. And he insists it was Héctor's fault for leaving him.
  • Fate Worse than Death: For Ernesto, being bedridden and unable to play music. Even Imelda acknowledges it.
  • Honorary Uncle: Despite his protests about the position, Ernesto was this for Coco when she was a little girl.
  • Maybe Magic, Maybe Mundane: Averted. It's established since the first chapter that the "ghost of Héctor" is not real and is just a product of Ernesto's guilt and delusions.
    • Played slightly more straight regarding Ernesto needing Coco's blessing in order to pass on. He probably would have still died around when he did with or without it, but his belief that he needed it was so strong that it seemed to keep him clinging to life even while clearly on his deathbed, and it's only after Coco does end up giving him her blessing that he finally passes.
  • Mood-Swinger: Ghost!Héctor frequently switches moods between his childhood's friendly, meek and playful persona, and then hysterically, resentful and angry when in his adult form.
  • My Master, Right or Wrong: Griselda the nurse. She finds out early in the story that Ernesto murdered Héctor in the past, but chooses to continue to care for him, as he genuinely wants to atone for his actions.
  • No-Holds-Barred Beatdown: When Imelda finds out about Héctor's murder at Ernesto's hands, she snaps and beats the crap out of him, not caring that he's weakened and in the verge of death. She would have killed him if Griselda hadn't stopped her.
  • Oblivious Guilt Slinging: When Ernesto reunites with Héctor at the land of the dead, Héctor does this by talking about how much he missed Ernesto and how a good friend he is, while Ernesto is uncomfortable by it, after how much he was berated and insulted by the "ghost".
  • Vengeful Ghost: Ernesto keeps seeing Héctor in various levels, and he doesn't exactly look happy to be there, frequently switching moods between nice, mean or vengeful. Of course, the Ghost!Héctor seen throughout the story is a delusion. The real Héctor is actually nicer and blissfully oblivious about his best friend’s betrayal.
  • Was It Really Worth It?: Since Ernesto was crippled and can't play music anymore, he has realized that murdering Héctor and stealing his songs wasn't really worth it, as he has lost his fame and his friend.
  • What the Hell, Hero?: When Coco finds out that Ernesto wanted to give the Riveras closure about Héctor's death so that "his ghost would stop pestering him", moments after finding out he murdered him, she calls him out on his selfish reasons.
    "After you said he’d died in 1921 and you never told us, I thought...I thought you had written because you wanted to set things right before you died [...] But that wasn’t it, was it? It wasn’t because you regretted what you had done. It was just what your delusions told you you had to do. It was never to help me have closure, it was all about getting your own. You murdered my papá, took his songs - our song - and let us believe he’d abandoned us. And now....And now you expect me to give you my blessing, of all things?"
Top

Example of:

/
/

Feedback