Okay, this is the last chapter of this unplanned sequel.
I actually enjoyed planning and writing this story in a few days and I hope that it is up to my usually standard.
Thank you for all the reviews and your support.
My next Merlin story will be up on 12th July
Take Me Home
Gave me more than a hand to hold
Caught before I hit the ground
Tell me I'm safe, you've got me now
Take Me Home By Jess Glynne
It had taken Merlin a few hours to calm down and get changed before he made his way down to the courtyard. He didn't care any more. He would show Camelot the strength that he had. He would show Camelot what he could have done if he had been bitter when he left that well.
He closed his eyes and tried to push back the memories. He had done so well and now he felt like he was back to the beginning again. Whether he would recover from this, only time would tell but he knew that Camelot would be the last place that they were going to visit again.
He jogged down the familiar stairs and waited at the bottom.
There was a few things that he had found out while being in Ireadal. The most impressive one was that there were more dragons outside of the five kingdoms that no one seemed to know about. All those that had managed to survive the worst of the purge had settled there. It was a good thing because it meant that there were others to teach Aithusa. It meant that Merlin hadn't seen Kilgharrah since before he was taken by the Sarrum, which actually suited him fine. He probably would have just told him that his place was still with Arthur.
Merlin really hoped that Morgana wouldn't be long. After what happened, he felt a little exposed being on his own. Anyone could come up to him and just set him off again. The whole castle knew him as Merlin. It was only a matter of time before someone else called him it
He watched as Arthur started to walk his way. He looked up the stairs and along the corridor for any sign of Morgana. He wanted her to turn up so that Arthur didn't try to speak to him.
"Merlin, can we talk?"
"It's Emrys, not Merlin."
"Why?" Arthur asked.
Merlin remained quiet.
"Just answer me."
"Now you want me to talk. I mean the last time I was in the same room as you, the last time we spoke, you didn't want me to. You didn't want to hear my 'lies'. But okay I will talk. Emrys. I am Emrys. I have always been Emrys. You just haven't known about it. Our destiny was to reunite Albion and bring magic back to the land. I spent four years making sure that you and Uther stayed alive long enough to make sure that dream became a reality. There were times where I could have easily given up but I didn't because I believed in you Arthur.
But now how the tables have turned. I should have never believed it in the first place. You think you have some so far but you are still that arrogant prat that I met on my first day in Camelot. I had hoped to return when I managed to get away from the Sarrum and regain your trust. I still dreamt the dream. I am now glad that I did stop."
Arthur took a little step backwards.
"I have found somewhere that is that dream and I haven't had to lose any friends along the way." Merlin finished.
The other man just nodded and for the first time ever, Merlin was sure that he saw shame on his face. He could have smiled at it if he was angry but petrified at the same time. He was glad when Morgana joined them and grabbed his arm.
Somehow, her touch always seemed to ground him. She was the only thing keeping him sane. Gwaine was good fun and there were certain things that he could talk with him about rather than her. But she was his anchor.
"Have you called her yet?"
"I was waiting for you. I know how much you love hearing me call her."
Morgana squealed. "I know that you say that it is an experience for yourself but … I think it is more magical seeing it."
"Wait, who are you calling? How are you going to call her?" Arthur asked.
"Shall we get on with it?" Merlin asked, ignoring Arthur.
Merlin smiled at her before he lifted his head up to the sky and saying the words that would grab her attention. Morgana laughed when he had finished.
"It will never get old. How long will she be?"
"What on gods earth have you just done?" Arthur asked, trying to enter the conversation.
"This is Aithusa. She won't be long. I may have added that you were here, so she definitely won't be long."
"Good. The sooner we get out of here, the better really."
The whole courtyard was thrown into a panic as the white dragon arrived and settled down in front of her master. She wasn't fully grown just yet but her snout was almost the same size as Merlin as she leant forward.
"Thank you Aithusa." Merlin said as he stroked her.
The guards had got together and quickly surrounded her. Merlin took a few possessive steps froward.
"You will not harm her."
Aithusa noted her master's tone and bent down so that they could mount her. Morgana placed a gentle hand on his arm.
"Come on, time to go." She whispered to him.
Merlin looked at Arthur's flabbergasted face before looking up at the castle on last time. He gave her the command and they started to make their way back home.
He realised why Acelin did do what he did. Even though Merlin had calmed down, there was no way that he would be ready to talk to him properly until he had some time back. Ismena had been surprised by their return and Morgana passed on the message that they were returning home while Merlin made his excuses.
Morgana had found him later and they didn't leave his chambers for two days. The servants came in and brought food and drink but not much of it was eaten or drunk. It was easier for Morgana to promise that they would never go back this time around.
By the time Acelin, Tobias and the rest of the group got back, Merlin was back on the right path. The hardest part was that he was going to have to explain it all.
Acelin took the chair next to Merlin in his chambers.
"I suppose you want an explanation." Merlin said bluntly.
"Only if you want to give one."
"As you know now, magic was illegal in Camelot. My mother had sent me there to try and help me to control my magic. Gaius had used a bit of magic during his time and was going to help me. In the few days after my arrival, I learnt of my destiny and how it tied in with Arthur's. I followed that dream for four years until … everything went wrong."
"You don't have to say."
"I've kept it a secret for long enough." Merlin paused for a moment to get himself together. "The Sarrum came to visit. Arthur … He was stressed and he took that stress out on me. I was making my way across the castle and I ran into someone and it stained his shirt. It was just a simple spell. I thought that there was no one about. One of the Sarrum's men saw me and they marched me to Arthur. The Sarrum had this stone that reacted with magic. I had no where to hide. The Sarrum offered to take me away and Arthur agreed. We spoke but he never allowed me to explain. I did so much for him. I lost so much for him."
"I'm sorry I made you come."
"We never told you, so you went meant to know."
Acelin smiled at him after a while. "I have been meaning to ask you something for a while."
"What is Morgana to you? Just I have had a few members of the council approach me to ask whether they could court her. I just wanted to ask you before hand."
Merlin laughed. "I don't even think I even know."
Acelin patted his shoulder. "Sort it out because I don't think they would wait around forever."
"What are we?" Merlin asked as Morgana sat down in the chair.
"What are we what?"
"I explained everything to Acelin earlier and after he asked what you are to me because he has had a few people enquire about courting you."
"What do you want us to be?"
He was taken aback by the question.
"Have you never thought about it? Us being together?" She asked.
"Many times but I stopped."
"Because Arthur said that you shouldn't be my friend."
"We would have been great."
"Merlin, we agreed long ago. The past is in the past, we cannot do anything to change it. There are many things that I would like to change but I can't. We just have to accept it and move on."
"Couldn't you imagine us though? Standing behind Arthur, him thinking that he is so high and mighty and invincible, but we are the ones to make army run away in fear."
"We could still do that. We have a new king to follow."
"So, wait, have we just agreed to start courting?"
Morgana laughed. "I think we have. It isn't too much further than what we have been doing."
Merlin reached out and grabbed her hand. "I suppose not."
He could put Camelot and his life there behind him now. He was never going to return. Ireadal is the place where he needed to be and it was the place that he was going to stay until his dying day. He knew that he could do it with Morgana by his side.
Nothing was going to stop them now.