Disclaimer: "Merlin" is a series based on the varying legends of King Arthur, and is an original series belonging to BBC and all characters contained herein are under copyright to the previously named. They are used here at the author's interpretation and for entertainment purposes only.
Greetings From the Author: This is an eerie little story, that came to me as I was pulling an all nighter. Out of all the times we've seen Morgaine or Morgause (depending on your source material, which we all know can differ greatly) with Mordred where she is actually his mother, it is Morgana on 'Merlin' that isn't his birth mother that comes across as the most loving. I completely believe that when Mordred makes another visit, that mother/son vibe will continue, and that on this show while Mordred isn't her birth son he could likely become the son she adopts in her heart.
I anticipate that greatly, it is both touching and distressing at the same time. Since I've got a pretty good feeling of the dark places both mother and son will be headed. So was this little ficlet born. It is also the first time I've experimented with first person perspective, so let me know how that is working.
Enjoy, and remember . . . Keep the magic secret or the Great Dragon will eat you.
Sweet Child of Mine
Eyes of the bluest skies, as if they thought of rain.
I hate to look into those eyes, and see an ounce of pain.
Where do we go, where do we go now?
Sweet child of mine. Sweet love of mine.
Another nightmare, another bad dream. That is what they always tell me, even dearest Gwen. Staring at me with wide eyes of concern, eager to embrace me and whisper in my ear. Gaius, with his aged face, gaze full of a knowledge I can only guess at. He too will say they are just dreams, but there is wariness upon his façade. I have seen that same look on the face of his ward, Merlin, servant to my-almost-brother, Arthur.
I grabbed him in the hallway once, mind in a fever after a dreadful waking, and I was conscious enough to realize it was fear reflected back at me. Were my words so strange? Is it so unbelievable that someone could glimpse the future? There are times I look into Merlin's dark blue depths and see something that feels akin to myself, but then he will turn away and it is gone.
Is there no one that can understand? Is there no one that can see the entirety? Can I blame them really? When I wear a mask just as they all do. Pale, beautiful, strong-willed, Lady Morgana, ward to the king. That is my mask but it has begun to crack. Just beyond where I can reach, I feel destiny pulling at my insides, consuming and painful, with promises of terrible power. When I sleep I see the destiny of others as well. It would be a great surprise to many to know that there really aren't any truly happy endings. I tell myself that it is alright, as long as I can find happiness in the here and now.
Except it is getting too difficult. Gwen is like sunshine in the darkness, but even she seems to be fading from me as I collapse into my visions and the twisted assurances they offer. Sitting in the confines of my room, staring at the black haired, green eyed woman in the mirror, I think back on the one person that could really see me. If Gwen was the sun, he was the moon. Not fighting the darkness, but becoming a part of it that could still light the way.
For just a boy, he had eyes that had stared into my soul. The connection between us was almost instantaneous and stronger than anything I have ever felt. Those beautiful, blue, soulful eyes would look up at me from the boy's sweet face, framed by hair the same shade as my own and skin just as pale. In my mind I heard his voice, speaking my name as if in prayer.
I wondered at my feelings, what they were and where they had come from. He was just a child, a druid at that, and I hardly knew him at all, but in the course of a day his existence to me had become more important than my own. Every fiber of my being called out in protection for him, and when he faced execution, I felt a part of me curling up in utter anguish. I would not let him die, I could not. He was safe in the end, blessedly. Merlin and Arthur conspired to get him out of Camelot and back to the Druids with whom he belonged.
After he left, and my mind and heart still thought of him, I still did not know where so powerful a feeling had come from, or really, even what it was. Until one day I went down to the kitchens, anxious for some fresh bread and not in the mood to bother Gwen with the task.
One of the serving women was sitting at the table, a small boy in front of her. From her way with him, I knew the little boy to be her son. He'd gotten a cut on the forehead and was fussing over it. The serving woman patted at her son's skin delicately, eyes full of love and voice gentle and cooing. I was struck by the memory of my own hand and kerchief patting at the druid boy's feverish forehead, kneeling beside him with worry sketched clearly on my face.
Then I knew, as suddenly as lightning striking a tree, what I had been feeling. It would seem impossible, I had never had any children, a woman would remember something like that, and I certainly was not old enough bear one of his age. However, as I watched the woman with her little boy, the truth of it was undeniable. My profound care for the young druid was a mother's love for her son. A love so powerful and everlasting, that you would give anything, your life included, to see your child safe.
He had changed me, the son of my soul, and since then I felt his presence and his absence like the pulsing in my veins. In my visions his name had filtered through the haze, and I whispered it then, a loving smile curled upon my lips. "Mordred."
After that day of revelation, I have thought of him often. When I'm sad or ready for sleep. Sometimes thoughts of the son of my soul would stave off my visions and I would find peace. Perhaps my dreams of him are visions just as all the others. They both frighten me and fill me with elation.
I always see myself and the scene from far off, like I am watching my own body from the clouds and yet I am aware of my thoughts there on the ground.
There is a small group of men, snarling at the druid boy and brandishing weapons at him. One of the men shoves Mordred to the ground. The boy is afraid but angry. His anger is nothing compared to my own. I see these men at a distance, but soon I am running towards them, waspish words ready on my tongue. That they would dare to harm a little boy, my little boy! Instead of words I recognize, a tongue that I don't know spills forth and I realize it must be spell work. Hot green fire courses down my arms and into my hands as I light the horrid men aflame. Their shrieking finally dies just as they do, and I'm frightened of the smile of victory on my face. It looks almost cruel, but then they surely deserved some punishment for threatening a child. Only evil men would do such a thing. What of Uther then? I thought him evil once, maybe I was right.
But that all disperses into nothing at the sight of my son. Mordred would turn to see me in the glade, there are bruises on his skin. My heart lurches to see him hurt. A smile tugs his small mouth and he throws his arms about my neck. I hug him back fiercely and check him over for injuries. The boy enjoys that, he enjoys being cared for, I can tell. We both ignore the dead men, they don't matter much anymore. As we look at one another, I hear him deep in my mind, his lips unmoving just as they were the first time I met him. "I have missed you, Mother."
I wake up smiling, a nice change from bolting upright in bed and screaming. My hand presses against my chest where my hearts beats like pleasant drums. "And I you, sweet child." I say into the darkness, and for just a moment I feel like I have found where I belong and I can ignore the tinge of dread that is lying just at the periphery.