Uther: Merlin, you have been accused of using sorcery
Uther: you know what this means
Merlin: but my name is Marvin
Uther: not it's not
Merlin: I'm pretty sure I know my own name, your majesty
Uther: I have it on good knowledge that-
Merlin: what's your source, Sire?
Uther: *sighs* Gaius, would you please help me out here?
Gaius: I have studied birds all my life, Sire. Marvin has helped me out finding new informations on Merlin's too, If that helps
Uther: what the - LEON!
Leon: Sire, Marvin here may be a bit incompetent, but now you're beeing unfair. He DOES know his own name.
Uther: okay, ARTHUR!
Arthur: *out of earshot* YES, FATHER?
Uther: GET IN HERE RIGHT NOW!!!
Arthur: *walks in*
Merlin *whispers to Leon*: shit, have you told Arthur?
Leon: *pale* no, you?
Merlin: *shakes head very slowly*
Arthur: father, i was training the knights, what do you - oh hey Marvin
Uther: you can't be serious
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arthur’s feeling loose-limbed and warm on the way back from the tavern. the sound of (his) coins jangling in merlin’s pockets delights him. the way merlin’s no-longer-so-bony shoulder occasionally knocks into him delights him. the moon overhead, the fresh night air on his face, it all delights him. “i’m happy,” he says. “thank you.”
merlin turns to face him clumsily, grinning wide and easy, more easily than he has in…weeks. months. “i’m glad.”
“well i’m happy you’re glad.”
“and i’m glad you’re happy i’m glad.”
“and i’m glad, happy, wait.”
merlin laughs, a bright sound, loud in the still night, and nearly falls over. he grabs for arthur’s arm to keep himself upright, but overbalances and they stumble sideways out of the street and into an alley.
in merlin’s efforts to right them, he manages to pin arthur against the wall with surprisingly strong hands. then it just seems right to wrestle him back. and so it goes until arthur gets merlin in a headlock and merlin’s neckerchief comes loose and arthur’s mouth is at his ear, then his neck, then merlin deftly wriggles out of his grip and arthur is backed up to the wall. again.
“i’ve missed you,” arthur says, which doesn’t make much sense because merlin is always by his side.
but merlin says, “i’ll protect you,” which is even stranger, and tips his forehead against arthur’s. he pulls away after a moment, but moves a hand to brush the hair from arthur’s brow. he strokes down his cheek, his neck, to press an open palm to arthur’s chest right over his heart. “i’ll protect you.”
arthur covers merlin’s hand with his own. he knows when not to tease merlin, not when he gets quiet and serious, not when he’s like this. “we’ll protect each other,” arthur says.
merlin looks (down, ever so slightly down, not that arthur would ever admit merlin was actually taller than him) at him with unshed tears in his eyes, or are those stars? and leans in, in, in to press a kiss to arthur’s forehead. “we’ll protect each other.”
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