we played on horses made of sticks;
Merlin/Arthur; U-Rated; 394words; Coda 1.10;
an interpretation for how next week's episode,
"The Moment of Truth" may go.
He raises his hand, his eyes burning with a golden light and Arthur stops dead at the sight of it. He shouldn't be able to hear the words that spill forth from Merlin's lips but he does and the sibilant hissing is enough to freeze his blood.
Merlin stops speaking a moment later; there are no flashes of light or whooshing sounds as the magic speeds from his extended hand, but there are the screams of the enemy as they fall suddenly, writhing in agony upon the ground. Merlin looks to the man beside him and an order is shouted to bind the enemy post haste.
Merlin turns then and starts to walk away, stopping only when he sights Arthur, his body jerking to a halt. He knows he’s been caught. They stand in stillness, watching one another in silence. Merlin's shoulders slump, defeated, his mouth is dry and his palms are wet with nervous sweat.
Arthur straightens; his gaze worryingly unreadable as he starts walking towards him only to stop but paces away.
“I think it would be best if you remained here,” Arthur speaks and Merlin frowns.
“Sire?” And it’s the first time he’s said the title with the honour it deserves. Arthur cannot bring himself to smile at that, knowing what it’s taken to finally get Merlin to say it like that.
“I will leave you here, Merlin,” Arthur says, “you cannot return to Camelot.”
“No. There is no debate. If you return you will be executed. I cannot change the law.”
“Then why are you letting me live?” He asks, his eyes wide and pleading.
There is real pain upon Arthur’s face as he reaches out and lays his hand upon Merlin’s shoulder. “I am not my father,” he says softly, “but until I am king I must obey his laws.”
“Arthur…” he pleads.
“Don’t, Merlin.” Arthur stops him, “If… if you’re still here when I am crowned King, I will come for you, Merlin. But I will not see you before then, do you understand me?”
Merlin is silent for a long moment, a million and one words sticking in his throat but only one he allows himself to speak, “Yes,” he says, his voice barely above a whisper. Arthur’s hand squeezes at his shoulder and then he turns and walks away. He doesn’t once look back.
[ end. ]
[ written as part of Caspe-Wri-Mo ]