Disclaimer: Hallmarks Merlin does not belong to me, and neither do the characters. A violation of copy rights is not intended.
A/N: This is to be considered post-Merlin, and deals with the consequences of the end of the Old Ways. The story goes in accordance with the movie, the only alternation is that Vortigern wasnt killed in battle, but sent into exile to the Faroe Islands. *cough* Further, I have no idea who became king after Arthur, so I simply decided it was Gawain. *shrugs*
I am probably messing with quite a chunk of British (and in later chapters with Nordic) history here, but hey, this is just a fanfic. Enjoy and have fun! But if anyone asksthe Faroese Islands were colonized in the 8th century. If I am not entirely mistaken, the Arthur-saga takes place in the 5th or 6th century. Lets just ignore these 300 years, shall we?
English is not my first language, so please have mercy, I am trying my best.
Black lilies swirling
Swirling black lilies totally ripe
A secret code carved
Swirling black lilies totally ripe
A secret code carved
On the surface simplicity
But the darkest pit in me
It's pagan poetry
Bjrk Pagan Poetry
Idath, the Lord of Winter, brushed a strand of red hair from his face and squinted as he stared at the grey skies. There were no clouds to be seen, no stars, no moon, no sun. Justgrey.
Why just why wasnt anything happening?
The Old Ways had found their end months ago, Merlin had defeated Queen Mab, and Christianity had finally found its way into the hearts of people. Only a few followers of the old faith still lived far up north. Galahad had returned with the Holy Grail, and finally, for the first time in centuries, there was peace on the island.
Gawain, who was now King of Brittan, had accepted the new religion as his own, and slowly, people started to rebuild their lives. They could watch the mortals from here. But that was about all they got to do.
It felt like the whole world had moved on, while they were still here, frozen in time.
Mabs last spells already started to crumble; the last bits of magic fell apart or drew back into far away corners of human memory. It was only a matter of time until Merlin and Nimue would find each other again. Idath wished the best for both of them, and hoped it wouldnt take them too long to get back together.
The Lord of Winter signed, concentrating his thoughts on their own situation again. No one had expected it to be like this. Well, no one had been expectinganything. They hadnt thought about their own death. Dying is a pretty absurd concept to immortal beings. Most of them had expected to disappear, or to become part of the Wild Hunt, and exist at the edges of dreams.
But now the few of them had ended uphere. Wherever here was.
The air seemed stale, and the sky was like a lid that kept them from escaping. The grass was brown, had never been green, and not a single animal was in sight. Nothing seemed to truly live here. They had tried to investigate their new surroundings, but the paths lead nowhere and the fields and forests ended in nothing.
At first, they had come to him for answers, had asked why they were here, but Idath hadnt been able to provide them answers. He was considered the Lord of Death, but this wasnt his realm. And he had no idea why they had been banned to this place.
Idath walked back to the group, his eyes focused on the rocky ground. He was just as helpless as them.
Loke looked up as he heard the Lord of Death returning. His red hair fell in messy waves over his shoulders.
Anything? the elemental king asked, but the spark of hope and enthusiasm that had forever been in his eyes was gone.
Idath only shrugged and sat down on a rock next to the Lord of Fire.
All of them were here, Loke, the Lady of the Lake, the Mountain king. A few fairies, gnomes and a dragon. Every single magical being that hadnt been killed during the war was here. Mind you, not many had been left.
Idath bit the inside of his lip. Yes, all of them were here. Except for one. And that particular being had been the key to their existence.
Niniane pulled her cloak tighter around her shoulders, trying to keep the cold from settling in her bones. She knew she wouldnt succeed. Only few of them had survived the winter, and spring arrived late up here. Somewhere in a corner a sick child started to cry, but it soon subsided into a quiet whimper.
Those who hadnt been killed by the Christians had been driven away from their homes; their villages had been burned to the ground, along with the crops and the live stock in the stables.
Another fifty people from Ninianes village alone had died of starvation.
Only a month ago, they had arrived here, in the north of the island. Their journey had been long and painful; they had even crossed the old borders the Romans had left behind.
Finally, here, they had found other followers of the old beliefs, who had given them food and shelter. Still, the few who had survived werent able to start anew. At least not yet.
Niniane the sick childs mother almost whispered her name, but that was all she needed. Once, not too long ago, she had been a priestess of the Old Ways, back when life had still been in order.
She kneeled down next to the little boys bed, placing the back of her hand on his forehead and then on his cheeks. He was burning up with fever. Niniane sighed almost inaudibly. She didnt want the mother to feel her resignation. The boy probably wouldnt survive the night. The priestess closed her eyes for a moment. How could all this have happened? How could their gods simplyleave them behind like that? What had they done? They had always been loyal! How could they let their followers die like this?
But noNiniane had quarrelled with the Old Ways and their disappearance long enough; it was time to take action again.
I think I know how to help your son. For the first time in ages, somebody smiled at Niniane.
The water around her was black. It didnt even feel like water at all, it was just a dark substance that surrounded her. And she wasasleep. Yes, she had to be asleep, because she dreamed.
She, who was the Queen of the Old Ways, of Air and Darkness, the Mistress of Magic, was also the Mistress of Dreams. Dreams had always been with her, had brought her both happiness and fear, had shown her the past and the future, and had guided her way in darkness.
She knew that she hadbeen forgotten. She was dead to the world.
At least her dreams hadnt left her, for they were a part of what she was. They came to her through the endless night she was in, and unrolled her whole life in front of her.
They helped her remember everyone she had ever loved, every child she had given birth to, every friend, and every lover. She remembered the pain their deaths had caused her, how it had cut into her soul.
She remembered the arrival of the Romans on the islands, remembered all the fights, the battles, the fear and the bloodshed.
All the political intrigues and manoeuvres. Pacts, brotherhoods and betrayal.
She remembered the magic in her veins, the power she had had.
She still felt the responsibilities she had to carry, although she had never understood and never questioned why SHE had been the chosen one.
She remembered how difficult it all had been because she had been so alone. She was so lonelyand why did her heart hurt like this?
As the water slowly started drawing back, her raven curls floated on its surface like water snakes, framing her face perfectly. Had anyone been able to lay eyes on her in this very moment, he would have understood why people used to say that Queen Mab was made of darkness.
The sound of her own heartbeat almost caused her eardrums to burst, with a start she jolted up, causing the water around her to splash. She gasped, taking in the cool nights air.
Nothing had ever felt this good.
Her heavy eyelashes lowered onto her cheekbones, and two large drops of blood slowly ran down her cheeks.
She was alive. She was back.
Mab looked down at her reflection on the water, watching a pale witch with black hair and blood traces on her face staring back at her.
She had remembered herself.
Kay, guys, please tell me what you thought of it so far! A second chapter is already in the making! But for that, I NEED reviews, ok?