A/N-Hello everybody! Sorry I have been gone for a while but I have had a lot to do and it was my birthday quite recently so I have been out and about spending the money I got, so I will be writing again soon as I have lots of free time.
This chapter is an odd one and if it seems very distorted or confusing I have wrote another note at the end that you can quickly read and if it still isn't cleared up you can always message me on my tumblr (imaginationlessme) or on here, I will answer soon as possible!
(Also very big congrats to me for getting my first bad comment! Woo! But seriously if you don't like the story, don't read simple as. To review the 2nd chapter means you read both so why waste your time if you don't enjoy.)
Anyway, rant over. I hope you enjoy!
"No!" Gwaine ran and pushed Merlin down before the pain hit and a warm feeling fell down Gwaine's chest.
"No! Gwaine!" Merlin shot up from the floor to see his best friend falling down the floor with an arrow in his chest.
"You bastards! We were leaving! You were going to live in peace!"
Then Merlin screamed and all hell broke loose.
Merlin began hyperventilating over Gwaine's still form, whispering spells with his hands on the bloody wound. Gaius had always said, if a patient were to die, that they were now at peace and they would hardly feel a thing. Merlin could now see straight through his lies. Gwaine did not look 'at peace', his eyes were open and agony flooded from them showing that the man had died in such a way that was undeserving for him.
"He'll be okay, he'll be okay, he'll be okay," The mantra that Merlin had taken on was constantly looping in his head but his panic and guilt would alter it.
he's dead, it's your fault, he is dead because of your stupidity, of course you could not live peacefully. Anywhere you go, you bring death and ruin. Now you have brought it upon your best friend.
Merlin fell back onto his bottom from his crouched position and stared down at his bloody palms. Gwaine's blood stained his hands and Merlin knew that even when it was washed away, the guilt of his friend dying would never fade. The young warlock dragged the back of his hand over his mouth and began to dry heave and sob, mumbling quietly to himself.
"I've killed him. This is all my fault. I am sorry, my friend but I cannot let this monster who I once called a brother go unpunished. I will avenge you. I will never stop fighting for revenge until the day I die or he dies."
Merlin stood up and looked around the clearing, he looked at the mess he had created, the mess of mangled bodies, he looked in shock at both his own creation and the words that came out of his mouth. "I did this...but I am good." Merlin threw his hands to his head, forgetting about the blood that was drying upon them. "I'm good... I'm not like Morgana."
You are just like her, a traitor, a killer
"I am not a killer."
A killer, a murderer. Slayer of the innocence. These men had families and lives, you have ended them yourself...
"I am not a killer. I didn't mean it. I was just so angry! They killed Gwaine!"
You still did it. You slaughtered them in cold blood.
The warlock felt tears running down his face, he was a murderer, "I'm a monster. I am no better than Pendragon."
Stop crying, I am trying to help you become better. Stronger. You can let go of all this guilt and let me take over, I'll give you the revenge you desire. Give me control.
Merlin didn't want this guilt anymore, he didn't want to feel anything. He didn't want to feel the guilt for Gwaine's death, he had forced him into this life (even if it was only for 4 hours but it was long enough to get him killed) and it was his fault he was dead. He didn't want to see him die every time he closed his eyes. So he did all he could, he let go.
The guilt flooded out of his body and all the remorse for his crimes, that still lay deep in his heart, disappeared.
He felt power surging into him. The darkness taking over his body as it was pulled forwards to control the body and as Merlin was pushed back. He was finally at peace but he was no longer himself. Merlin was no more. Long live the darkness.
A noise made him turn to see the King stood in the clearing, petrified at the sight before him. Anger rose inside him and he began to vibrate with rage and the strength of the magic that surged around the small man's body. The darkness spoke for him and could, with a single word symbolise all the rage that he held in his body, "You..." and his hand flung out and shot him backwards into a tree.
Arthur ran, as fast as he could, along the border of Mercia hoping desperately by chance he would hear something that could lead him in the correct way, towards his destiny. The sign he was looking for presented itself to the king but not in the way he would like it too.
A black ring of magic fired itself outward and knocked the young man backwards into a tree, as he slowly gathered his senses he saw that the black smoke has fallen to the floor and was being pulled back to, what Arthur deduced to be, the source and his manservant. Merlin had once told him that Magic when fired outwards need to return to the source and some ways it is more subtle than others but when the spell has finished, all magic has to return to the source. And the power of the spell affected the subtlety of how the magic returns. The only man Arthur could think that would be powerful enough to cast such a spell was the very man he was looking for. So he followed the trail to a clearing...
Arthur had to choke back a gasp at the sight around him.
The bodies of his knights lay mangled around, littering the beautiful clearing. Their heads lay on the luscious grace and their blood began staining the flowers underneath. It was the sight that was haunt his dreams and nightmares for years after. Their bodies were completely destroyed, their guts lay around. Some looked as though they had not suffered long, however some like Sir Francis, were mutilated, he was still choking in pain before catching his King's eye and letting out a final breath. The most disturbing sight was the body of Gwaine, his clothes saturated with his own blood and his eyes open staring at the sky, unseeing, he let out a small gasp causing Merlin to whirl around revealing his completely black eyes, no longer blessed by the glorious gold of magic. The man before him spat out only one word, "You!" He was practically vibrating with rage and his upper lip twitched in anger. Black magic fired at him like a cannon ball and threw him into a tree pinning him there. The warlock began to walk towards him, "You offer yourself like payment for your crimes." Merlin said placing a hand to his chest in fake shock before bowing until his head almost touched his knees, he cocked his head upwards so he could see the King and smirked, "Well, I gratefully accept." He walked away until he was a safe distance, as he lifted his arm to prepare the king's executing spell, Arthur began to speak,
"Merlin, this isn't you. Don't become the monster that I thought magic was. Prove me wrong, please. I need you. I did not send these men, they did this of their own accord."
Merlin's eyes flashed from the complete coverage of black so his iris was visible, the magnificent golden colour and his arm began to falter, Arthur found the spell weakening and he could move forward from the tree. Arthur felt his lips tug upwards at the sight of his old friend returning and he took a step towards his ex-manservant but the golden eyes flashed down to the limp body of Gwaine on the floor and his whole demeanour shattered and he reverted back to his darkness. "No, you did this to Gwaine. You sent your men and you killed him. He was an innocent. You are just like your father and I will make you pay for the thousands of lives that the Pendragon line has taken." Merlin raised his arm and splayed his palms. From the position of Merlin's arm, Arthur could see the blood that coated the man's hand, Gwaine's blood. The death of one of his closest friends had mostly likely broken the man beyond repair. Arthur dropped his head down in defeat. He may not have been held back by magic anymore but Arthur just didn't seem to want to move, he deserved this. He had caused this manservant so much pain in such little time. Merlin smiled maliciously and began to incant the spell. But he stopped. Merlin began to speak again, but it was not aimed at Arthur.
"No! You gave me control. I am the one in charge and I will kill him where he stands!"
Arthur became certain that it was the end and he closed his eyes acceptingly. But when he was left standing, he opened his eyes again to see that Merlin again was fighting with mid-air, "He hasn't changed, he is bluffing...Fine..." He dropped his hands and took a deep breath, "Today is your lucky day, Pendragon. I'm not going to kill you here." His gaze dropped again to the corpse in the centre of the clearing. "You need to take Gwaine home and bury him. Bury him like the loyal knight he was. It's the least you can do after being the reason he died." He began to walk towards the young king, "But know this, when you sent these men to kill us, you started a fight and a war that I will finish and fight in until my last breath." Merlin pulled off his neckerchief and threw it to the ground. "The Merlin you knew is gone, you killed him when you drew your sword back in Camelot."
The warlock stood nose to nose with Arthur. Being this close to him Arthur could hear the growling under his breath and his harsh breathing, he was truly furious, Merlin flicked a hand and black smoke began to move upwards from his feet, slowly creating coverage over the young man but before it enveloped him, he said three words that would haunt Arthur for years to come.
"Long Live Emrys..."
And the Warlock was gone.
When the smoke had finally dissipated, Arthur ran to Gwaine's side and placed two fingers on his neck, nothing. No beat. Arthur placed the back of his hand to his mouth and moved backwards.
"I am so sorry, my friend. I will never stop fighting for you. I will bring Merlin home. I promise."
Arthur began to prepare to move away from the clearing when the familiar sound of wings echoed above him and Kilgharrah landed behind him. He looked around the clearing and his face dropped and he spoke gravely, "What has happened here?"
Arthur began to explain, his discovery of the clearing, the conservation he had with his manservant and finally his disappearance.
"There was a black smoke, it was rising from the floor into his hands and it's what he used to teleport away. It was like he was absorbing the power and his eyes were completely back. It was like he was possessed or something, we have to help him." Arthur pleaded with the magical creature before him. "He is going to hurt others and maybe even himself."
The dragon spoke softly, well as softly as a dragon could, "I fear, there is nothing we can do. Merlin has accepted and embraced his darker half. You are no long two sides of the same coin but two people who have broken away from their bonds of destiny and opened more problems to this world than when Pandora's box was opened. Now that you have broken away you have become two halves. Those who support the usage of magic in our world today, and those who wish to abolish it from the world, which side do you think Merlin has pinned you on, especially with the most recent attack from your men?"
Arthur stood defensively from his crouched position beside Gwaine, "Merlin may have generalised me on that side but I did not send these men. This," He gestured to one of his most loyal knight who now lay stone cold at his feet, "This is the work of rogue knights. People who I have no control over, hence the word rogue."
The dragon sighed, "Merlin does not know this and thanks to his newly embraced darkness, I doubt he will ever listen to you again. But maybe he will listen to another..." The dragon's gaze turned down to the limp and lifeless corpse of Sir Gwaine. Arthur turned to see the body again, it was painful to look at, to think, that in his dying moments, Gwaine had considered Arthur the enemy and that he was out for blood of the two.
"Sir Gwaine is dead, there is no changing that."
"Sir Gwaine can be brought back but magic always has a price, the true question is are you, King Arthur, prepared to pay it for destiny?"
Arthur contemplated the decision, he could choose it but he would not steal an innocent life. It was wrong and Arthur knew it, no matter how important Gwaine was to this dragon's plan.
"I will not take the lives of the innocent, be them sorcerer, warlock, witch or non-magic. If they are pure of heart then I will never take their life."
The dragon smiled, he could see a clear distinction between Uther and Arthur, though if Uther were in the place of Arthur, Merlin would have been dead on the pyre before Gwaine could have even intervened in the first place and the conversation, happening right now, would be fictional and part of the dragon's imagination. "Well, young king, what if I told you of a man who made camp not far from here, he is the slaughter of many children in nearby villages but the word never reached Camelot as he swore to return for the remaining children if word was sent to you and the knights? He is not pure of heart, maybe one of the blackest that could be found around, to slay the innocent creates monsters in men, my proposition is that we use his life instead of an innocent one. Do you accept the terms, the life of this man for what could be the reparation of destiny and the resurrection of Sir Gwaine?"
Arthur took a deep breath, "I, King Arthur of Camelot, accept these terms in order to bring back Sir Gwaine of Camelot."
The dragon knelt down so his snout was level with King Arthur's head, bent his snout towards Gwaine's feet and gently blew some warm air over the body.
Arthur watched in awe as the colour changed from a sallow yellow to a normal healthy glow with a slight redness in his cheeks. Gasping breaths began to heave from his chest and Gwaine threw himself upwards feeling his chest for a wound but found none there. Confused, Gwaine looked around and caught eyes with the dragon and smiled. "It's been a while, my friend. Did Merlin send you to heal me?" He stood carefully, holding his arms out in disgust at the bloodied clothes that hung from his frame.
The dragon shook its head gently and straightened to his full height, "It was not the young warlock but instead the young king." He gestured to behind Gwaine where Arthur stood, uneasily, shifting from one foot to the other.
Gwaine scowled, "You brought me back for execution then, sire?"
Arthur looked downwards, "I did not send these men for you, Gwaine. I was with Gaius and then with the dragon learning the truth of Merlin and his magic when Leon informed me of the patrol that had left. I raced to get here. But I was too late. Merlin has gone and accepted his darkness. That was why I brought you back, I need you to help me bring him back."
Gwaine looked the King up and down. He raised an eyebrow at him before saying, "I have three conditions. When we find Merlin I speak to him and I am the one to approach him."
Arthur nodded, "Of course, my friend. And your other requests?"
Gwaine smiled, "A new shirt and some ale."
Emrys sat in a Druid Camp that he had found after leaving the clearing. He was turning a slice of bread in his hands, staring down, deep in thought and no-one dared disturb the thought. It was clear that Emrys was no longer the same. The fire flicked close in front of his face, but he didn't feel the heat. He could only feel the strong need for revenge.
For not killing him there, he had killed Gwaine but he needed to be bury and at home. We can take him to war and kill him there. It won't be cowardice to do it when he can't fight back
"We will take Camelot as our own and rule a fair and just land. We will do what he couldn't when we get our revenge."
Thank you Emrys.
"No, thank you. Without you I wouldn't have been able to act or control. You did this, Merlin and together we shall rule."
Emrys crushed the roll in his hand and threw it into the fire.
A voice interrupted his conversation.
"So you plan to kill the king?"
Emrys looked up to see a familiar face before him, "Yes, I plan to rise an army and storm the castle."
"Mind if I lead alongside you, I have an itch that I have been trying to scratch but a pesky warlock would stop my plans. But now it seems he is on the right side. Welcome."
Emrys stood and gripped the man's forearm.
"Well, thank you and welcome to my army, Mordred."
A/N- If you can't tell, I have tried to create two personalities inside of Merlin. The darkness that is referenced throughout is Emrys who Merlin has never really let fully take over his body but when he has control he has omnipotent power but it comes from darkness. Merlin has been broken beyond repair from the death of Gwaine and the guilt from it so now resides inside of his own body with a thirst for revenge and can only communicate with Emrys inside of his head. I think I may have Merlin begin to go slowly insane as right now he plays the part of a conscience more than the goodness in Emrys' head so I may have that slowly break away and Emrys can then gain more power. I don't know, if you have any ideas leave them in the reviews if you would like. Also, Emrys speaks aloud to him which is why he was having conversations with himself in front of Arthur.
I have begun to make up my own lore for magic, for example that magic needs a way to return to the body. It seems silly but I thought it was good. The rallying of the armies on both sides is still to come and Arthur, Emrys and Gwaine will meet again soon.
Thank you for reading! Favourite, Follow and Review and I will post again soon! (I have a lot more free time now and I now where I want to take this story.