Arthur doesn't kiss him because he's attracted to him, it would be stupid to think so and Merlin doesn't consider himself stupid. Of course Merlin isn't quite sure why Arthur kisses him, but Arthur is strange and Merlin never really knows why he does anything he does.
Arthur pulls him onto his lap as he finishes lunch, a stew Merlin has fetched for him, and kisses him hard, his strong hands covering Merlin's smaller ones, he tastes of beef and thyme. Merlin always kisses back because he thinks it's polite and he does enjoy it, Arthur's kisses are rather brilliant and Arthur seems to like it when Merlin kisses him back. He lets himself be lifted onto the table and lets Arthur part his legs so he can slide forward between them, Merlin rests his hands against Arthur's hard chest. He likes the heat of him and the steady insistence of his heartbeat. He likes knowing that he is alive and safe.
Arthur pushes him against a wall and kisses him in one of the beautifully furnished south corridors. Merlin's surprised because there is a handmaiden walking past and Arthur has never kissed him in front of someone else before. But he concludes that no one would take the word of a handmaiden over that of the crown prince of Camelot anyway. Arthur buries one of his big hands in Merlin's dark hair; Merlin decides he quite likes this, he wonders if he will ever have a lover who does this to him, he hopes he will. They would have to have big, strong hands though or it wouldn't work properly. Merlin doesn't really notice the handmaiden standing shocked across the hallway, eventually she stumbles away but Arthur and Merlin don't separate until much later.
Arthur has been gone for nearly a month on a mission for the king. Merlin certainly hasn't been spending the whole time worrying about Arthur, well maybe he has worried quite a bit, but the man is his destiny after all so he would be a fool not to be a little concerned and he certainly hasn't been standing in his room for more then three hours waiting for the prince to return. It can't have been more then two hours and fifty eight minutes. He hears the prince's familiar, fatigued drawl, he's talking to one of his men, one of Arthurs favourites, he praises the man more often then not and Arthur doesn't often praise anyone at all so that is saying something. Arthur bursts through the doors, he's clothing is dusty and sweaty from the long ride home, his hair is ruffled and ruff stubble adorns his usually well-maintained jaw. His eyes rest on Merlin for a split second and then he has him in his arms pulled tight against his chest, his lips devouring Merlin's with a kind of ferocity he has never directed at Merlin before. For a minute Merlin almost believes that Arthur is kissing him because it's him, but he dashes the thought from his mind. A prince doesn't love his manservant; there are some things that just never happen. Arthur pushes him onto the bed and Merlin vaguely registers the fact that they are now alone. He doesn't know when the knight left and he doesn't care. Arthur's weight pushes Merlin into the bed, he feels a little breathless trapped between the bed and Arthur's firm body but it isn't too much. Arthur is supporting some of his weight on his strong arms. He feels something press against his thigh and he's surprised to realise that it is Arthur's arousal. It doesn't make him uncomfortable, he wants to smile, he likes that Arthur enjoys his kisses too. A slight shift in Arthur's position against his body brings Merlin to the startling realization that he is equally aroused. Arthur pulls away suddenly and strides to the bathroom without a backward glance to Merlin. He closes the door meaning he wants to be alone. Merlin leaves in a daze not really noticing the stares he receives on his way back to his room. Not noticing his swollen lips and ruffled clothing and hair.
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