Forget, wedding, Amy


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The Time Meddler (4/?)
Forget, wedding, Amy
Title: The Time Meddler
Spoilers: Up to "The Sword in the Stone", eventually, beginning with "The Nightmare Begins".
Warnings: Character death, violence, possibly incest?
Pairings: Arthur/Merlin; Arthur/Gwen; Arthur/Morgana; Merlin/Morgana; Merlin/Gwen; Morgana/Gwen; Gwen/Lancelot; Morgana/Gwaine - although it's not focused in the romance at all, they all might be mentioned, so you are warned.
Rating: R
Chapter Word Count: 2,270
Summary: They said no man can change his history, but Merlin doesn't believe it. Time is his to bend and his destiny is his to shape. Again.

Chapter 4

Arthur started raising his knights and squires right away. They knew little of how many fighting man Hengist kept, but they knew where he was hidden, and it was a wonderful fortress. They devised some tactics as well, for he should expect them with gold and few battle men, and deliver Morgana immediately. It was just afterwards that they would strike, the biggest part of the army coming around to punish Hengist for his behavior towards Uther, with the sword and the shield – and a siege, if it was needed.

They’d starve them if they didn’t leave to fight, but Uther would spare nothing if it meant ensuring their safety, for it was clear that Hengist must be made an example for everyone that ever thought about kidnapping Camelot’s wards.

While he did his duty, in his heart, he hoped that Hengist wouldn’t have thought that he could spare Gwen and killed her. He had to trust Morgana’s ability to maintain her servant girl against all odds. And that – the thought with a wry smile – was something that he indeed wouldn’t doubt, for she would have killed Uther bare handed before allowing something to happen to Gwen, as she had proved many times before.

Still, whenever he thought of Gwen in Hengist’s castle, his heart grew cold as if something terrible would happen there, if he didn’t arrive soon enough to avoid it.

Little did he know it was already too late.

As they walked into the camp, many faces turned to them, but none seemed too surprised by the newcomers. Anyone could point out that Morgana was a court lady, from her clothes to her steps, and even if Merlin’s clumsiness wasn’t too impressive, they all seemed to be too happy to see him.

“It seems you’re more popular here than in Camelot” she said, her voice low and amused.

“Not an easy feat” he answered, and there was laughter in his tone.

“What do we do now?” she asked, looking around. “Who should we talk to?”

Merlin was about to say that he really didn’t know, as a voice reached their heads.

“You came!”

It was an unmistakable voice, and Morgana turned around, her eyes hungry with a desire that was not at all sexual, towards the boy.

“Mordred!” it was a cry of desperation and love, which was the first thing to make Merlin suspicious since he had came back. Still, a bound as close as theirs had been couldn’t be shattered by merely turning back time. Maybe he could still save the boy as well.

The druid child smiled at them, and returned Morgana’s fast embrace. For the first time since they had met, he truly looked like he was: a kid. An orphaned, terribly powerful kid, wise beyond his years from the pain and the difficulties, but a kid nonetheless.

“It took so long, we thought you wouldn’t come” he said, his voice smaller when coming through his mouth than it was in their head. “We thought Emrys would keep you away”.

Morgana was clearly confused, but Merlin felt both the chance and the danger in such idea, and readily replied:

“It was better to wait, or it would have brought the doom upon you all.” He had to use all that was left of his old commanding tone, strong and certain, and although it was already slipping away as everything else was, it seemed to be enough.

“Uther would have sent his army to fetch her” agreed a man behind them, and they turned to face a tall, dark and handsome man, with a single braid falling through his otherwise naked head. “You must forgive us, Mordred still has to learn how to restrain himself.”

“He’s just a kid” said Merlin, feeling much better around the older druid than around the child. “It is to be expected.”

“You talk as if you were expecting us!” said Morgana, looking surprised. “How can that be?”

“You already know the answer to that, Morgana” said the man, but his smile was kind. “Now, come. You must bath and eat. There will be plenty of time to talk.”

Merlin couldn’t complain about either suggestion, so he gladly walked away. Although he really wanted to help Morgana, he wasn’t looking forward to that conversation.

Gwen was alone in her cell when a sudden sound called her attention. She turned to see Lancelot’s face framed in the tiny window that adorned the room.


She climbed in the stone bed to be closed to him, intertwining her fingers in the metal frame. He did the same, touching her hand lightly.

“How did you end up here, Guinevere? I thought you safe in Camelot! And why do they think you’re the Lady Morgana?”

The servant girl gave a little shrug before answering.

“I have no idea. They trapped us and murdered the guards. I thought they had caught Morgana too, for we were looking for her when that happened, but it seems that it wasn’t the case. Now she’s missing and Uther will think she’s here and won’t look for her.”

“Don’t distress yourself” said the man, gently. “I would bet that Morgana can look after herself and might even arrive home before the ransom note.”

“What are you doing here, Lancelot? I thought you’d be trying to become a knight somewhere!”

“It seems that, although Uther was wrong about many things, he was right about this. I’m a nobody. My luck is that there are always man like Hengist, that are too happy to pay for the kind of entertainment I can give. So, here I am, living a life through my sword. I was a fool to believe I could be something more – I’m nothing.”

“Oh, Lancelot” she said, and her voice was soft and caring. “You’re everything that is right in this world! You should let… You shouldn’t give up. Promise me you won’t give up. That you’ll go out there and fight for what it’s right again because… That’s who you are, Lance. Do not lose faith, for there will be none left for the rest of us if you fail!”

He looked at her, touched beyond words, and kissed her finger lightly.

“I have thought about you every day, Guinevere” he whispered.

“You have never been away from my thoughts!” she agreed. “And I still believe in you.”

“I’ll try and be worthy of that trust” said the knight, gravely. “And I’ll get you out. Be ready.”

He raised himself and walked away, but in Gwen’s heart, she knew she wasn’t alone anymore.

It was some time later that the druid came back to them, an easy smile on his dark face.

“I’m sorry, I don’t think I introduced myself before – I’m Aglain, one of the elders of this druid camp.”

“You don’t seem very old to me” said Morgana, smiling. “And, it is a pleasure.”

“Not many of us survived the fires of Uther’s reign.” He said, but his tone was mild. “And even less of our elders, but we’re still enough to ensure that people get the help they need. Which leads us to your arrival.”

“How did you know I’d come?”

“You mother was one of your people. It was to be expected you’d inherit Vivienne’s power.”

“My mother? A druid?” Morgana’s voice was full of confusion, but Aglain just smiled again.

“You know very little about us, druids. We weren’t always a small cluster of people living in camps. Most of our kind has always lived in the forests or sacred places, but some of them went to marry into the big noble houses, either for love or for politics. There are many people with druids’ connections among the noblemen. Your mother was such a woman, for your grandmother was a druid girl who fell in love with your grandfather – and he fell in love with her as well. Luckly, the King back then was more understanding than Uther and gladly consented to the marriage.”

“So my mother… She also had magic? And Uther knew about it?”

“He couldn’t have missed it even if he wanted to. He kept you wishfully thinking that you’d be like your father, who was no magic in his veins.”

There was something in the sentence that struck a chord within Merlin, but he couldn’t say exactly why. Some things just faded too fast.

“So… The fire in our house… It wasn’t an accident? Was it Uther?” She seemed eager to know, and that made Merlin feel uneasy. They should not walk on this path again.

The man shook his head, denying.

“Although Uther grew to hate magic and can only see its dark side, he’d never strike against your mother. He loved her well, as he loves you, and wouldn’t have hurt her for anything. Whether it was an accident or not, I can not say, but Uther wasn’t behind it.”
“How can you be so sure?”

“I, too, have been among the court when I was young, Morgana, and your mother was the first lady in Uther’s court before he was married and also after Ygraine died. Vivianne was precious for him.”

“Before he was married? But, how…?” The druid interrupted her, always keeping his voice low and kind.

“Your mother was married to Gorlois much before Uther and Ygraine met. Uther was not yet king when they got married, and Gorlois was his most trusted advisorin his struggle to regain his kingdom. Ygraine was still just a girl, threading along her sister’s gowns when Uther first took notice of the golden beauty that was Vivianne’s younger half-sister.”

“Ok, now I’m the one who’s getting confused. Morgana’s mother was Arthur’s mother sister?” Asked Merlin, looking from the lady to the druid.

The man shrugged.

“Although Clendori married her husband for love, she was not strong enough to survive the birth of her second child. It was a great house, and there was a great need for heirs, and he married again, to a Lady of the King’s choosing. Lady Mirella bore him four children, one of them was Ygraine.”

“So Arthur was uncles and aunts?” interrupted the servant, again, and Morgana looked at him with annoyance clearly spreading through her face.

“As you know, Tristan was killed while battling against his King, a traitor, trying to avenge his sister’s death although it was childbirth that killed her. Vivianne died, and their older sister is long gone from his land. I know nothing about their two younger brothers, but they were just children when Ygraine died – and so was I. Yet, somehow, I don’t think you came all this way to talk about things you could learn by going to the castle’s library.”

“No, we didn’t” said Morgana, trying to control her anxiety. “I came for help. Merlin tells me you help people that have powers and don’t know what to do with them.”

The man smiled, easily.

“Why, but you already found yourself the greatest instructor you could have! You’ll learn more about your magic as the time goes on, but there’s hardly something we could do for you that Merlin can’t.”

The boy blushed but Morgana didn’t take any notice, and didn’t hesitate in explaining what had leaded them there.

“But he said there’s something he can’t help me with. My dreams – I dream true, sometimes. Other times, I have the most terrible nightmares.”

The man nodded, slowly, understanding.

“A seer” he said, lightly. “I see. I’ll look for the council of other more gifted in this art than I before saying anything that might not be true. But you’ll find peace here, even from your dreams. Sleep, Morgana, and we’ll talk more tomorrow.”

It was clear that she wanted to protest, but he rose in a fluid movement, and left the two alone in the tent. Morgana was frustrated, but Merlin was warm and comforted, so he found no fault in the man’s words.

“There’s no use in trying to rush him” he said, tugging her sleeve. “Let’s just rest, Morgana. It was a long day.”
She looked at the warlock, suddenly lost and very young.

“Can they really help me or did we came here for nothing?”

“They’ll help you” he said, softly. “They helped Mordred, after all.”

She nodded and comforted by his words, started to get herself ready to sleep.

Author’s Note: I’m so sorry that it took me so long to post. It’s funny, because the chapter has been written for months now, and it was sitting in my computer and I just forgot all about it in the rush some changes around here. I hope it’s enjoyable, and I know it is slow paced, but I like to take my time with the story. Hopefully, it won’t bore you to death – I know there’s a lot of explaining, but I wanted to build a view Merlin’s world as much in accordance to the legend as I could while still being faithful to the show’s changes. I feel there are a lot of things that are just throw away during the episodes that can be used to build powerful drama. And, about Vivianne being Ygrane’s sister, I’ll just assume that it did came from my MZB influences and such. Which, also, explains Vivianne’s mother name. Also, I’m sad that Aglain died so soon, for I loved his character (so different from Alvarr!), so I’m building him up a bit and trying to keep him alive. Hopefully, I’ll manage to post the next chapter before you all just give up on the fic again.


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