AN: So I've been trying to post this chapter for a few days but hasn't been letting me. Sorry it's so late but hope you enjoy it anyway :)
It was another two days before Lenaya could stand and walk around, and even then she felt very weak. She walked in circles around the room as she tried to build her strength. Merlin brought her food, mostly a lumpy looking stew that did not taste very good, and the rest of the time he was hardly there. Bored and having nothing else to do, Lenaya set about tidying up the messy room and opening the window to help get the disgusting smell out.
Merlin came in, a plate of meat and bread in his hand and stopped, one hand on the handle and the other barely holding onto the plate as he glanced around the room.
"What did you do?" he asked looking at the stacked books and papers and the organized tables. It was the first thing he had said to her all day.
"I tidied up a bit," Lenaya stated, her hand rested on the window sill where she stood, letting the fresh air come in and chase some of the stink out.
Merlin handed her the plate and she bit into the bread hungrily. He walked over to the wardrobe and pulled it open, a pile of clothes tumbled out. He turned and gave her an incredulous look.
She rolled her eyes. "What did you expect?" she asked. "That I would fold all your dirty laundry? I'm not your mother." He sent her an annoyed glare.
Lenaya collapsed wearily onto the bed as Merlin gathered up the clothes again and shoved them back into the wardrobe, barely squeezing the door shut behind them.
"I guess it's a good thing you're up and about," he murmured. "You can leave tomorrow."
"About that…" Lenaya hesitated looking at Merlin nervously.
"What?" he asked dangerously.
She shifted in her seat. "My horse ran off when the… serkets attacked."
Merlin rolled his eyes, "You can get a new horse when you get to wherever you came from."
Lenaya glared at him, "This horse is special, and I am not leaving without him."
"Well you're not staying either!" Merlin stated loudly. "How far do you expect my hospitality to go?"
"Then I'll find him on my own!" Lenaya barked back. "I didn't ask for your help."
Merlin stalked towards her. "This is my land."
She narrowed her eyes at him disbelievingly. "This is the Lake of Avalon, no man owns it," she glanced around the room and scoffed. "You couldn't even begin to afford it."
"I may not have paid for it in money, but I bloody deserve it after all I have given for it," Merlin growled back.
Lenaya stared at him, her eyes still squinting suspiciously, "What does that mean?" she asked.
Merlin stared back and then turned away. "Nothing," he murmured. "It's none of your business."
Lenaya dropped her gaze to her hands glaring at them, trying to repress the tears seeping to her eyes. If Merlin wanted her to leave there really was nothing she could do about it, but she did not want to leave without Destin.
She heard a frustrated sigh before Merlin spoke. "Look…" he began, "There is a pasture a few hours walk from here. Many of the wild horses go there to graze. Perhaps your horse is there too," Merlin offered quietly.
"I don't think I have the strength to walk that far yet," she admitted quiet[y.
"Then I'll go and find him myself," Merlin offered, turning to leave.
"He's very particular!" Lenaya protested. "No one has ever been able to do anything with him except me." She dropped her gaze to her folded hands again. "He was my father's horse, but I inherited him after…" her voice trailed off, why was she saying this? Why was she telling this to a complete stranger?
"I'm good with horses," Merlin stated, but then hesitated. "But I'll wait another day and take you tomorrow," he offered. "The last thing I need is for that horse to get spooked and hide somewhere you'll never find him."
She smiled slightly. "Thank you, Merlin."
He merely grunted in response, turning quickly to leave the room.
Once he was gone Lenaya's shoulders sagged. She was much more tired than she was letting on. Honestly, she was not even sure if she would be up for the walk tomorrow, but she did not want to push her luck, and she truly was afraid of Destin running away from this man and disappearing. At the very least she could try. It was either that or walk back to Camelot on foot, having lost one of the closest friends she had ever had.
AN: Aw maybe there is a little bit of Merlin left inside. I guess we'll have to wait and figure out if the rest can be coaxed out as well. Leave a review!