Reviews for Shades of Destiny
Gavin lunard chapter 30 . 7/20
This story is the best I wish this was the Merlin movie
SerendipitousPixel chapter 30 . 5/23
I just had a very enjoyable evening following the exploits of Mergana & co. - thank you!
SpangleyPony chapter 30 . 5/16
So I found your sequel. Once again after it was completed so feel spoilt. Sorry I haven’t reviewed every chapter but I transfer stories to my kindle as I find that easier than reading here but I just wanted you to know that I’ve really enjoyed this series. Thank you for sharing
Fangirl17 chapter 30 . 5/15
I’ve finally finished. Well done! I hope you’re very proud of all of your work. You’re a fantastic writee and I’ve thoroughly enjoyed this journey. Thanks for writing!

Fangirl17
deactv chapter 30 . 5/12
Congratulations on finishing an epic story! I admire your dedication and perseverance greatly.
PhantomKnight88 chapter 30 . 4/17
...It’s over... it’s really over... I can’t believe it’s really over.

Four years I’ve been following this story, and I forget how long I was following The Sorcerer’s Bride. I think I started reading right around the time Morgana was poisoned by blood magic. And I was so captivated I had read up to that point in at most a day or so. In all my years I don’t think I’ve ever followed particular stories for this long, even if I did loose track of them for periods of time, or had an author actually stick with it and finish.

At least I’ve marked them on my favorites page so I can easily find them for re-reads. Awesome job. I can without hesitation say that your two stories in this world are in my top five list of favorite fan fic’s, and top three of Merlin fics. Can’t say where exactly, since I haven’t actually numbered them, nor do I care to, since I don’t have absolute favorites.

It’s sad to say goodbye to this particular story, but thank you for the amazing ride. You portrayed a better story, with better characters than the tv show ever did. And did it while being a better writer with better grammar than 90-95% of fan-fiction writers.

It will be sad not having new chapter’s to look forward to every month, but like 8 said there’s always rereads.

Again, awesome job. And thank you for this damaging adventure. The ending was perfect. And really much more satisfying than the lame ending on the show.
Eidolon02 chapter 30 . 4/15
Now THIS is how the show should have ended... or at least started the fifth season with. From the very first episode, establishing the Golden Age of Albion was the entire point of the show, with freeing magic being an integral part of that goal. Making Arthur the Once and Future King he should have been was explicitly laid out as Merlin's destiny, and we were eager to see him do it, and to see how shy maid Gwen would become the legendary queen Guinevere. While nobody wanted to see Morgana's dark destiny fulfilled, I think we all were looking forward to the other three's very much. It was laid out plain as day for us to be expecting, and that made the total failure of it to appear so much harder.

But this... this is exactly what Kilgarrah promised Merlin he would help build in that first episode. A truly just world, for rich and poor, sorcerer and muggle, that would last for generations. You've managed to pick up the ball that the show dropped so hard years ago, dusted it off, put some polish on, and carried it to the finish line. THIS IS CANON, as far as I'm concerned. This is what we were promised, and never got, until one of us had to go out there and write it themselves. And I love it. As you said in your final AN, Shades became much more than a Mergana fic as it evolved. It built upon the fix-it-fic qualities of The Sorcerer's Bride, which had already course corrected both Merlin and Morgana into the truest versions of those characters. You endeavored to do the same for not only Arthur and Gwen, but the entire premise and end goal of the story itself; THE GOLDEN AGE.

And you succeeded! It may have taken years of work, but what you've done here is systematically rebuild "Merlin" as a story in a way that is truer to itself than the actual show. Characters develop, actions and beliefs make sense, and no one is shafted by editorial fiat. If TSB was about averting Morgana's unwelcome destiny, Shades is about birthing Merlin, Arthur, and Gwen's very welcome one. Whereas we all felt like the show ended with King Arthur's reign being, well, "blah", here we see the foursome ruling together to make it everything we ever hoped for. And it didn't come out of nowhere, either! Over the course of this story, you've carefully been building it up, brick by brick, showing the gang actually uniting Albion through not merely force, but through diplomacy and justice. By the time it came time to fight off the Saxon invasion, it wasn't just poor old Camelot fighting all alone until Merlin bails them out, like the show... every kingdom, big and small, rallied under their banner for the good of all.

This is the happy ending we were promised, and the one we deserved. Everything about this was perfect; the description of the crowns, the four thrones of equal height, the plan to finally liberate magic without allowing for evil sorcerers to abuse helpless muggles... it fits together wonderfully. The establishment of a group of knights to administer justice for both sides was a great idea, and again, shows WHY these four are the ones to create the Golden Age; we're not just told it, we SEE it. And most of all, it's a happy ending for the characters, who we've loved so much for over ten years now, who never, ever got from the show what they deserved. Merlin and Morgana, happy and in love, safely guiding a united and just Albion through the generations, alongside Arwen's descendants, with the promise of seeing their best friends again one day... It's beautiful.

All of this is basically my usual, rambling self trying to say... Thank you. I've loved reading this story, and its predecessor over the years, and reliving this version of the Arthurian myths, in the form it should have taken. Thank you, for all the late nights, the lost and reworked drafts, the struggle to find the right words, all of it. Thank you for putting more love, thought, passion, and effort into this story than the people paid to actually do it. And thank you for never giving up on it, no matter what else life threw at you over the years.

It's been a wild ride, and I loved every second of it! So, for the last time... fantastic work, and I can't wait to see what else you write with your other stories!

Til then,
Eidolon
Phoebe594 chapter 30 . 4/14
Absolutely amazing story, what a beautiful end! I have thoroughly enjoyed ever minute of this story and it's predecessor. Can't wait to see what you do next!
Straight Gate chapter 30 . 4/13
Love the wedding , Morgana's magic for Gwen's hair, Merlin's jacket. The crowning of the queens. the king consorts, the return of magic. This story could still go on. I wonder if you could make peace as exciting as you have made the conflict. I wonder if anyone could. This is definitely one of my favorite stories. Mordred not be rehabbed and Morgana not being able to have children would be my only complaint. The Sarrum Agravaine, etc, got what they deserved. Bravo!
NCVII chapter 30 . 4/12
I'm too drunk to write a coherent review to this.. But I loved this and I've loved reading it all it was amazing

Many of the love to you for making this story and hope you write more!
Merille Marc chapter 30 . 4/12
My kudos to you RLD Flame-point Calli-co. Though updates took long I have always waited for them. And so rewarded with fine episode of my favorite ship. I admit I'll sorely miss your stories RLD coz I think this will be your last Mergana fanfic yet for me all the time it's been a wonderful 'journey" for me reading your Merganas. Thank you so much.
Guest chapter 30 . 4/12
Happy Easter!
This story and its predecessor are the best Merlin AU fanfiction I have read on this site.
For a minute I was scared that with all the events that happened in this book, you would gloss over the legalization of magic in Albion - but I glad that my fears were unnecessary.

All your characters' motivations made sense, I even found myself sympathising with Mordred (the antagonist) & Sefa as they truly believed that they were doing the right things and were not one-dimensional villains. In one chapter you managed to dispel the nature of fate/destiny that the show was so fond of forcing down our throats. In the series, Merlin was an inactive hero and his single-minded obsession with destiny turned two individuals (Morgana & Mordred) against Arthur & Camelot. I'm glad that this version of Merlin didn’t read too much into prophecy (unlike the show), even in the first book he refused to act against Morgana after being told of her (supposed) destiny.

Why couldn't we have had someone like you write the whole series?

You gave some much needed character development to the four leaders of Albion that the writers prevented them from getting in the show, and that it truly is a Golden Age with these people at the helm.
I love all these couples: Sefa/Will, Freya/Gwaine, Leon/Mithian, Lancelot/Elena, Arthur/Gwen and finally Merlin/Morgana. I love how the main couple are equal in every way & that they can enjoy immortality together while waiting for the reincarnation of their friends.

Thank you for writing these stories & I hope you write more AU Merlin (especially Mergana) in the future.
NCVII chapter 29 . 3/30
This was good, sweet and fulfilling. I'm excited to see the conclusion to your story almost 10 years later. Damnnn well I will leave the sop for your final chapter in this amazing story and wish you all the best! :D
Eidolon02 chapter 29 . 3/27
I wasn't expecting a funeral for Mordred as well as Nimueh this chapter, and I'm pleasantly surprised! I think it was a good insight to give Morgana an opportunity to gain some closure, and some perspective on Mordred, now that it's all over. Reminding us of that moment before her magic was stripped, when she actually felt sorry for him, was a great touch. Proud of her for being able to let go like that, and see her tormentor for what he was in the end. Mordred put Morgana through hell, not to mention everybody else, but ultimately that's because of the life that had warped him since birth. At the same time, it's hard to completely excuse him, when he's so warped that if you stripped all that away, he'd practically be a brand new person. It wasn't his fault he was the way he was, but he still was that. I think Merlin and Morgana found a nice middle ground for mourning the person he could have been, and honoring the last-second goodness he sparked.

Backing up a bit, Nimueh's funeral was very nice, too. I like the references to other characters connected to the Old Religion like Alator, Aglain, and Cerdan. Love that Kilgs came to her send-off, btw; very fitting of their strange friendship. I also think it was a great choice to have the High Priestess's somber garb be very basic and unadorned, which matches the character of the office and the situation well. Morgana basically having to become a monk for 3 days to take on the spiritual mantle of High Priestess was also very fitting... unlike the show, you present it as much more than just an empty, pithy title for a villainess to gloat about. I'm glad you kept the funeral practice of sending them off by boat into the lake, rather than burial, it added the perfect Celtic, Arthurian touch. And the glimpse of Nimueh stepping into the afterlife with Hunith and Balinor was beautiful.

It was another great insight to relate that brief vision of Heaven to Mergana realizing, now, the full weight of what being immortal means. I think this is the first time, really, they fully understand it more than intellectually. They both cared about Nimueh a lot, as a mentor and a friend, but it wasn't comparable to their bond to Arthur and Gwen. Now, they're thinking about how hard it's going to be when they go, and knowing it's inevitable. All their power, and they can't hold onto their loved ones. I love how Kilgs actually gave proper words of comfort this time before flying away, compared to that scene in the last episode; cementing this depiction of him as by far the best version. I adore the image of Mergana ruling alongside Arwen's kids and grandkids throughout the ages, two eternal pillars in the extended family. What Kilgs said in the end, though, about Arthur returning one day with Gwen by his side, got me hyped most of all.

All in all, I really loved this chapter. Shorter and slower than the last few, but that's natural after the story's climax. I liked how the somber, calm, almost "rainy day" feel of the chapter plays off the theme of putting the dead- and the past- to rest. My favorite line is definitely the very last one, with Mergana finally ready to head into the future together. I'm very excited to read the final chapter, especially knowing it's going to be more upbeat, but I was very satisfied with this. Great job!
Harryfan011 chapter 29 . 3/24
Thank you for this wonderful update... I have been following this series since its very beginning and so naturally, I am excited about conclusion of the story. And, I can't wait for the final chapter of this brilliant saga...

But, coming back to this chapter, I loved it... It was slow but the nice kind of slow... While it's length was pretty short, I loved the tender moments between Morgana & Merlin... I have never read a better interpretation of their relationship, even though, this is set in an Alternate Universe...

I hope that you are staying safe in this topsy-turvy world... And, I hope to see you soon after the final chapter...

Till next time,
Harryfan011.
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