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“I told you from the moment I met you there is more to you, Erik. There is good in you, too.”
— Charles

Cherik is the slash ship between Charles Xavier and Erik Lehnsherr from the Marvel fandom.

Canon

Films

X-MEN

While listening to Senator Kelley speak, Charles notices Erik in the crowd. He follows him out and asks what he's doing there. Erik asks why he asks when he already know the answer, and Charles asks him not to give up on humans just yet. Erik has already heard the arguments, but Charles thinks mankind has evolved since then. Erik says that they've evolved into them, and after a pause asks if Erik is still sneaking a look in his mind. He asks what he's looking for and turns to face him. Charles says that he's looking for hope, and Erik says that he will bring him that. But only if he doesn't get in his way. He walks away and says that they are the future, not the humans.

As Erik is about to fire the guns on the police, Sabretooth suddenly grabs him and tells him to stop. Erik realizes what's going on and tells Charles to come out where he can see him. Charles asks what he wants Rogue for, and Erik taunts him for not being able to read his mind. He says that Charles will have to kill him before he can save the girl, and that if the mutant registration act is passed they'll lock him up. Charles says it won't be that way, but Erik tells him to kill him and find out. Charles doesn't and Erik fires on the officers, but stops the bullet before it kills them. Erik asks if Charles is going to press his luck and Charles lets Erik go. Erik says that Charles unwillingness to make sacrafices makes him weak and tells him goodbye as he leaves with the rest of the brotherhood.

Erik and Charles are playing chess in Erik's cell, when Erik asks how Charles feels about the possibility of the mutant registration law being passed. Them coming for the children. Charles admit that it does scare him, and Erik asks what he'll do then. Charles will feel pity for whoever comes looking for trouble. Erik asks why Charles comes to visit him, and Charles asks why he asks questions he already knows the answers to. Erik voices out loud Charles continuing search for hope, and says that prison won't hold him forever. The war is coming, and he will fight it by any means necessary. Charles says that he will always be there, and is wheeled out by the guard.

X-Men: First Class

Charles accompanied Moira MacTaggert and a US Coast Guard assault team to arrest Sebastian Shaw on his yacht. While the arrest was unsuccessful, Charles met Erik, who was trying to kill Shaw on his own. Charles prevented him from doing so and brought him the CIA's Division X facility.

Charles and Erik grew close as they began to recruit mutants to defeat Shaw. After their facility at the CIA was attacked, they relocated the team to train at Charles' mansion. There, Charles used his telepathy to help Erik unlock his potential for his powers, assuring Erik that there was good inside him. The two often played chess together as they debated how best to deal with Shaw; Charles wanted a peaceful resolution, while Erik wanted to kill him in revenge for the suffering he'd inflicted upon Erik while experimenting on him as a child.

The team was eventually deployed to help stop the Cuban Missile Crisis, which had been engineered by Shaw. After killing Shaw and donning his telepathy-blocking helmet, Erik tried to convince the others to see his side. As he spoke, Americans and Soviets ships fired on the beach they were standing on. Erik stopped the missiles in midair and turned them back on the ships. Charles tried to talk him down, but Erik was unrelenting. Unable to use his telepathy on him, Charles resorted to physically attacking Erik. The attack briefly broke Erik's concentration, but he was quickly able to regain control of the missiles. Out of options, Moira fired her gun at him to try to stop him. Erik easily deflected the bullets, but accidentally sent one flying into Charles' spine, paralyzing him from the waist down.

Charles fell to the ground in agony. Erik, completely forgetting about the missiles, let them fall safely into the water and rushed to Charles to cradle him. In a rage, he used his powers to choke Moira with her own dog tags. Charles managed to dissuade him from killing her. They parted ways, their friendship irrevocably damaged.

X-Men: Days of Future Past

Charles, who had become jaded and bitter from the loss of many of his students during the Vietnam War, turned to a serum that allowed him the use of his legs, but prevented him from using his telepathy. When Logan Howlett traveled back to the 1970s to prevent a dystopian future in which mutants were being exterminated by robots called Sentinels, Charles was reluctant to help him, but eventually relented. With the help of Peter Maximoff, they broke Erik out of his prison beneath the Pentagon, where he'd been imprisoned for his involvement in the assassination of John F. Kennedy. Upon seeing him the first time in years, Charles punched Erik in the jaw.

On their flight to Paris, they talked with each other, first arguing and then eventually playing chess as a form of truce. Though they succeeded in preventing Raven Darkhölme from killing Bolivar Trask, which had been the event that sparked the dystopian future, they were unable to capture her. She escaped, but not before Erik shot her in the leg. Erik left by himself to kill Raven, as he was under the belief that killing her was the only way to stop the future genocide.

At the unveiling of the first Sentinels, Raven tried once again to kill Trask, though Charles was able to mentally stop her. Erik then intervened, using his powers to take control of the Sentinels and drop a stadium around them so there would be no outside interference. Charles managed to convince Raven not to kill Trask. After she left, Charles took control of Erik's mind to remove the debris that he had been pinned under. After a brief conversation, the two parted ways once again.

X-Men: Apocalypse

Charles, using Cerebro to try to locate Erik, discovered that he had been recruited by Apocalypse to be one of his four horsemen. Apocalypse noticed their telepathic conversation, and took used his powers to take control of soldiers via Charles' telepathy and force them to launch their nuclear missiles into orbit. He later teleported to the X-Mansion and captured Charles, with the intent of transferring his consciousness into Charles and using him as his next body.

During the ensuing battle with the X-Men, a conversation with Peter Maximoff and Raven convinced Erik to leave Apocalypse's side and help defeat him. After the battle, back at the X-Mansion, Charles tried to convince Erik to stay. Though he was unsuccessful, they parted on amicable terms.

Animation

X-Men: The Animated Series (1992)

In Season 1 Episode 3, "Enter Magneto", Magneto resurfaced after years in hiding and attempted to break Beast out of jail. Watching the security tape of the incident, Charles Xavier told Jubilee about his past with Magnus. Later, Magneto attacked a military plant, disappointed that Charles did not come with the X-Men.

“He was once a friend. We met after a war. I worked in a hospital, secretly using my mental powers to heal the survivors. A dedicated young aide named Magnus assisted me. Together, we helped patients rediscover the joy of life. We became friends. But for some, a war is never over.”
— Charles Xavier describing his first meeting with Magnus

In Season 1 Episode 4, "Deadly Reunions", Magneto attacked a chemical plant to attract the attention of Charles Xavier. The two former friends reunited for the first time after they parted ways years ago.

“The years have been kind to you, Charles.”
— Magneto greeting Professor X at the chemical plant

In Season 1 Episode 13, "The Final Decision", Magneto joined the X-Men's fight against Mother Mold and saved Charles Xavier's life.

“Did you think I would let you die alone, Xavier?”
— Magneto saving Charles from a deadly plane crash

In season two, Xavier and Magneto were both lured to Antarctica by Mister Sinister and banded together to survive in Savage Land. They saved each other's life multiple times during their adventure.

Magneto“It was good to fight alongside you again, Charles.”
Xavier“Then join me in my work.”
Magneto“That can never be. We each have our own destiny. Only the future will prove which one of us is right.”
Xavier“Goodbye, my friend.”
— Magneto and Xavier before they parted ways at the end of the season

In the season five finale, "Graduation Day", Magneto admitted that he loves Charles Xavier and abandoned his mutant revolution to save his old friend's life.

Jean Grey“How much do you love Charles Xavier?”
Magneto“How dare you ask me such a question? He was my only equal. I owe him my life! My greatest enemy, and perhaps my only friend.”
— Magneto confronted by the X-Men in Genosha about his relationship with Charles Xavier

X-Men: Evolution (2000)

In Season 1 Episode 12 & 13, "The Cauldron", Magneto took control of Professor X's fighter jet and abducted him to Asteroid M. Professor X called Magneto "Magnus" in this episode, a name that only Charles calls him by in this series.

Professor X“Don't do this, Magnus. We can introduce ourselves to mankind as friends, not enemies.”
Magneto“You are an idealist, Charles. I am a realist. It's a dark future that rushes towards us, and we must face it prepared.”
— Magneto and Professor X meeting on Asteroid M
“Side with me, not against me.”
— Magneto to Charles, pleading him to join the mutant cause

In Season 3 Episode 9, "Under Lock and Key", Magneto was tricked to release the guardian of Apocalypse, and Professor X led the X-Men to stop him.

In Season 3 Episode 12 & 13 "Dark Horizon", X-Men, led by Professor X, and Brotherhood and Acolytes, led by Magneto, worked together to track Apocalypse to the desert of Egypt. In the field, Magneto sometimes used his magnetic power to help move Professor X's wheelchair around.

In the series finale, Season 4 Episode 9 "Ascension Part II" during his brief contact with Apocalypse, Charles Xavier saw in his vision that a redeemed Magneto joined the Xavier Institute as a teacher in the future.

Wolverine and the X-Men (2009)

In Season 1 Episode 3 "Hindsight (Part 3)", Magneto saved a comatose Charles Xavier from the shoreline of Genosha.

“Charles is a dear friend. All I've been doing is caring for him.”
— Magneto to the X-Men

In Season 1 Episode 20 "Breakdown", as seen in Scott Summers' flashback, Magneto shared a brief, teasing conversation with Charles Xavier after a brutal battle with the X-Men.

Magneto“With a mutant like her [referring to Jean Grey], we can change the world.”
Xavier“Which is why I will never let you take her.”
Magneto“Oh dear friend, never say never.”
— Magneto and Xavier's conversation from Cyclops' memory

In Season 1 Episode 22 "Aces and Eights", Charles Xavier travelled back in time from a dystopian future to warn Magneto of the disastrous outcomes of his war with humans.

“Erik, it's good to see you, old friend.”
— Charles Xavier greeting Magneto

Marvel Disk Wars: The Avengers (2014)

In Season 1 Episode 21, "X-Men! To Loki's Castle", Charles Xavier asked Magneto to help aid the X-Men.

“Professor X really set me up here.”
— Magneto while fighting two sentinels.

Comics

Earth-616 (Prime Earth)

Earth-616 is the main continuity of Marvel comics that is still on-going.

Professor X and Magneto are characters created by writer Stan Lee and artist Jack Kirby. The two opposing mutant leaders first appeared in Uncanny X-Men Vol 1 #1, published in September, 1963, and had their first on-panel interaction in Uncanny X-Men Vol 1 #4.

Earth-1610 (Ultimate Universe)

Charles Xavier was killed by Erik Lehnsherr in this alternate reality. The ultimate universe storyline ended in 2015 at the end of the "Secret Wars" event.

Earth-295 (Age of Apocalypse)

Charles Xavier sacrificed himself to save Erik Lehnsherr in this alternate reality. To honor his dead friend's legacy, Magneto became the leader of the X-Men and dedicated his life to complete Charles' dream.

Novels

X-Men: Mutant Empire (1996)

Mutant Empire is a trilogy of novels, including Book 1: Siege, Book 2: Sanctuary, and Book 3: Salvation.

Magneto, leading the Acolytes, took control of a fleet of Sentinels and claimed New York City as ground for establishing his new mutant empire. The X-Men, under the guidance of Professor X, tried to stop Magneto's tyrannical plan. In Book 3, Charles had a telepathic conversation with Magneto, pleading him to lay off his forces before triggering a full-on war with humans. Magneto refused. In the final showdown, Charles took control of Magneto's mind and Magneto fought the illusions of X-Men before losing. This is a rare instance where Professor X actively participated in a fight with Magneto, and used mental powers on his old enemy and friend.

“...[A]s their minds touched, Magneto felt his old friend's essence, familiar and yet hostile.”
— Charles and Eric having a telepathic conversation

The backstory of the pair in this novel series is faithful to comic canon, often referencing their first meeting in Israel.

“The last time they had parted as friends, at peace with each other, the argument had reached new heights. In the heat of the Israeli summer, desert sand flying in the sweltering wind, bodies baking in uncomfortable clothing as their Jeep bounced on rutted unpaved roads, their tattered friendship was torn asunder.”
— Charles Xavier recalling his past with Eric Magnus Lehnsherr

X-Men Movie Novelizations

This series of X-Men prose novels are official adaptations of the X-Men trilogy movies, including X-Men: A Novelization (2000), X-Men 2 (2003), and X-Men: The Last Stand (2006). The novels mostly follow the plot of the movies, with some minor changes. The second and the third book are written by X-Men comic writer Chris Claremont.

“It was like watching a pair of warrior princes take the field...”
— Charles and Erik described by Jean Grey as the duo approach her house
“...his friend - whom for so long, in so many ways, he'd considered his other half...”
— Charles Xavier thinking about Erik

X-Men: Chaos Engine (2004)

X-Men: Chaos Engine is a trilogy of prose novels.

In Book 2: Magneto, Magneto took control of the reality-altering modified cosmic cube, and made Earth into a utopia for all mutants. However, using the modified cosmic cube comes with a great price - it drains the user's energy until their death. Not only that, the world-changing power of the cube also would cause parallel universes to collapse into each other, eventually tearing reality apart and destroying all existence. Charles Xavier tried to persuade Erik to give up the Cube, but Erik did not want to give up the perfect world that he has built for mutants. To convince Charles that his actions are for the greater good, the mutant overlord took his old friend on a tour across the planet. Erik showed Charles how content all the world's residents are, including the X-Men, whose memories of their previous lives have been wiped by the Cube.

“This is the Earth as we always dreamed it should be.”
— Magneto showing Charles the world

The two settled in Erik's apartment in Paris, overlooking the left bank of Seine. Erik made Charles' favorite tea, Earl Grey. Now a dying man after losing too much life force to the Cube, Erik pleaded Charles to take over the powerful artifact, so that their dream for mutantkind could continue. But Charles apologized and refused, stating the world and reality itself is at stake. Suddenly, Red Skull, trying to take the Cube for his own, broke into the apartment and killed Magneto and the Professor.

“Why, then, can't you find it in your heart to do this one thing for me? For us?”
— Erik pleading Charles Xavier to take over the modified cosmic cube
“The Dream will not die, Erik, simply because the Cube is deactivated and the world returns to normal - it will continue to live on, in our hearts and minds... we will have to work twice as hard - together - to make it a reality once more.”
— Charles Xavier to Erik Lehnsherr

In Book 3: Red Skull, reality was once again re-written. The "resurrected" Charles, Erik and the rest of the X-Men worked together to save their world and eventually restored balance to the universe.

Games

X-Men Legends II: Rise of Apocalypse (2004)

Magneto, leading the Brotherhood of Mutants, joined the X-Men to save an imprisoned Charles Xavier and battled the evil Apocalypse.

Magneto“Ever the optimist, eh, Charles?”
Xavier“And why not? Look what we accomplished together. Imagine the good we could continue to achieve.”
— Magneto and Xavier exchanged final words before parting their ways.

Marvel: Ultimate Alliance (2006)

Professor X and Magneto have an Easter egg conversation upon arriving in Mephisto's realm.

“Don't worry, Xavier. I shall return with your precious student.”
— Magneto to Professor X, promising to rescue Nightcrawler

Marvel: Contest of Champions (2014)

Magneto and Professor X shared conversations during the November 2020 story event "The Immortal Hulk".

Professor X“Eric!”
Magneto“Your astral form, Charles? It's looking rather toned -- have you been doing more crossword puzzles?”
— Magneto flattering Charles Xavier after losing a battle to the Avengers

Marvel: Future Fight (2015)

Both Magneto and Professor X are tier-1 playable characters in Marvel: Future Fight, and can form a special team bonus called "Rivals and Brothers", increasing critical damage by 5.1% and attack speed by 4.8%.

Moments

Films

X-Men

  • Erik realizes that Charles was searching through his mind for information.
  • Charles tells Logan about Erik, and his cause.
  • Charles tells Logan that Erik could find a way to not be detected by Cerebro, because he helped him build it.
  • Charles describes what the machine did to Erik.

Quotes

Main article: Cherik/Quotes

Fanon

Shipping between the two was rare in the comics and during the animated series. There was more shipping during the first three films, but didn't become more common until after First Class, and became even more so after Days of Future Past.

Canon based fics will often have the two get together during various points in the films. After First Class many wrote that point being on their, mutant recruitment mission, or when they return to Charles' childhood home to train said mutants. Days of Future Past made that point be during the plane ride to London.

Comic fan fictions often focus on several key time periods of Charles and Erik's lives in the 616 continuity: their first meeting in Haifa (in reference to Uncanny X-Men Vol 1 #161 and Legion Quest), their shared time living together in the ruins of Genosha (Excalibur Vol 3), and particularly, them running the mutant nation of Krakoa together (House of X/Powers of X and later). Hickman's most recent run of X-Men, started with House of X/Powers of X, inspired a surge of comic-based Cherik fics on AO3, taking up approximately one-third of all comicverse Cherik fics on the site.

On AO3 it is the most written ship for both characters. It is the most written ship in the X-Men - all media types tag, X-Men (Movieverse) tag, X-Men (Alternate Timeline) tag, and the X-Men: The Animated Series tag.

Fandom

FAN FICTION

Charles/Erik tag on AO3
Charles/Erik on FanFiction.Net
Erik/Charles on FanFiction.Net
Magneto/Professor X on FanFiction.Net
Charles/Magneto on FanFiction.Net

TUMBLR

tumblr@cherikficreclists
Cherik tag on Tumblr
Cherik posts on Tumblr

WIKIS

Charles/Erik on Fanlore

Trivia

  • Charles is portrayed by Patrick Stewart and James McAvoy, while Erik is portrayed by Ian McKellen and Micheal Fassbender.
    • Both pairs of actors are best friends in real life.
  • According to Fandometrics, Cherik was the twentieth most reblogged ship the week ending June 10th 2019[1] and seventeenth most reblogged the week ending June 17th 2019[2].
  • Contrary to popular beliefs, Stan Lee, the co-creator of Professor X and Magneto, never stated that this pair of fictional rivals were based on Martin Luther King Jr. and Malcolm X. What can be inferred, however, is that the creation of the X-Men in early 60s was influenced by the socio-political context of the civil rights era.

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