The Last Page
Mirada's funeral was held today. The sun hid behind the clouds, and every black suited person here sniffled. Gwaine had brought the whole police force with him. During the speeches, he cried non-stop that he stole the clouds' tears away. We tried to comfort him, but Arthur shook his head at me.
"Let him be," he whispered soothingly.
A part of me didn't want to listen, but my mind agreed with Arthur. The cemetery was dead silent, only the whistle of the wind breathed past. In the distance behind a grave stone, I swore I saw a small stocky figure of a troll peer at me. But once I blinked, he was gone. A part of me wanted the magical being to stay, but things like magic wasn't attainable forever.
Arthur had sunglasses on to cover his glassy eyes. Although he had never met Miranda, he came on Gwaine's behalf. He was the only one there who was not sobbing.
When Miranda's funeral ended, we accompanied Gwaine to wherever he wished to go. Arthur occasionally stumbling across a rock he did not feel with his stick made Gwaine chuckle a little. I could feel the seething glare behind the sunglasses.
It took a while for Gwaine to adjust to his own smile, but Arthur sensed his tension and cracked a witty joke I didn't hear which sent Gwaine to tears of laughter.
I thanked the lord that Arthur had an unnerving sense of humour
Ma and I moved out of the Pendragon residence a couple of months ago. She had already moved her furniture into the apartment and was waiting for me do the same. The furniture was a pain to carry mind you; it was bloody heavy that even Arthur cursed under his breath whilst lending a hand in carry it. Uther merely rolled his eyes at us. As if he could carry this a hundred tonne couch!
Morgana began visiting me every day and offered me singing lessons – with her as the teacher of course. It sort of went like this:
"Merlin, we should be a duet!"
I stared her unblinking, "I can't sing Morgana."
She rolled her eyes, "Of course you can! I'll teach you!"
"No buts Merlin, we're gonna be a duet!"
Now if I had said no, she'd death glare me until my brain had a hole through it. I'd like to keep my brain thanks.
The first day Arthur visited me at my house, we acted like we met all over again – this time however, it's him staying over at mine's. He was extremely arrogant and smug as he marched in like he owned the place. But since I've been with him for so many months, I knew that this was one of his ways of hiding his nervousness.
"Hi, I'm Merlin," I smiled randomly, shaking Arthur's hand randomly, "Welcome to my dungeon."
Arthur raised his eyebrow, but smirked and played along, "Arthur. Does this dungeon by any chance serve roast chicken? I can smell something burning."
I heard Arthur boisterous laughter ringing in my ears as I tackled the oven and forced it open.
Thank god it's just over heated…
Six Years Later:
I stared at the diary entries I had written six years ago. It was a nostalgic feeling rereading the emotional pages of my younger self. Most of the time, I would roll my eyes at my own stupidity. Other times – as embarrassing as it was, I sobbed to them as well. Arthur, who was still beside me, chose to become a preschool teacher. I told him no because he's terrible with children, honestly, his patience lacks.
The last page was empty and at age twenty-two I was contemplating on whether I should finish that one last page. I hadn't written anything down for a long, long time. And speaking of writing, I had finished that novel, but I was too nervous to tell Arthur that I used his first draft that I found in the gym room years ago – according to my diary March 9th. It was funny because the six paged draft Arthur wrote was about a meeting between two people and how they were forced to live together.
And I chose to finish it.
I mailed it to Morgana yesterday, and I received an email this morning that said:
You flaming idiot Merlin :), this was due six years ago! What am I supposed to do with it now? Unless… You want me to send it to a publisher… I don't think they'll take this…
No, I really didn't want her to send it to a publisher, but I wanted her to read through it. Inside it contained Arthur's unspoken words of apology to Morgana's parent's death. And also Sir Bailey had contributed and wrote the last chapter, with an addition of a proposal. He had been trying to track her down for the past few years.
It wasn't hard considering that Morgana succeeded in becoming a singer and her face was all over TV. It was more of the fact of contacting her without her hanging up. Hence, Sir Bailey begged me to allow him to write the last chapter.
If she sent that novella to the publishers they'd think we'd gone nuts.
My phone buzzed on the table:
Oh my god, oh my god… Merlin, where's Sir Bailey? – Morgana
I could hear her squealing on the other side. Just as I was about to text back, Arthur strolled in his boxers and really bad bed hair. We had started to live together in an average sized apartment near the castle. Why near the castle? Don't know, we were just strangely attached to it I guess.
"Why are you so happy?" Arthur queried in curiosity.
"I can never understand how you can tell what I'm feeling without actually seeing my facial expression," my eyes wide in disbelief.
"You become really fidgety and loud when you're happy – I could hear you cackle to yourself like a maniac from our bedroom."
"Hey! It wasn't that loud, you're hearing is way too good!"
Arthur rolled his eyes, "You want to go eat out later?"
I thought for a second, "Just the two of us?"
He smiled slyly, "It's a surprise."
I blinked in confusion. Surprise? I didn't really like surprises; they always had a knack of turning out for the worst. But I just nodded and accepted the wide, glowing grin of Arthur as he casually left the room.
I glanced at the text from Morgana and texted back.
The phone buzzed before I cold reply back.
Don't worry – Arthur has just invited me somewhere – Morgana
So Morgana was coming. I hid the disappointment, because honestly, I was sort of expecting something kinda romantic, but then again, it was Arthur we were talking about. I giggled at the image of Arthur with a rose in his mouth like a cheesy tango dancer and his eyes glinting like a lecher. In my head, Arthur could dance. In reality, Arthur was like a bouncy ball bumping into every living and inanimate thing possible around him.
I still teased him about that actually.
With Arthur outside perfecting whatever surprise he had cooking up for me; the apartment was peaceful and calm. It reminded me a lot of Ma's apartment – small, simple and homely. Arthur had wanted to buy me a mansion, but I kicked him and told him how on earth we would pay off the mortgage. We didn't even need the space.
During the talk of houses, it led to children. Did we want one? I didn't mind, but Arthur was a little hesitant since he worked with 'a hoard of miniature versions of evil' everyday. His first day there was terrible. He came home with tears (manly tears).
"What's wrong?" concern clouded over me.
"Me being blind… Am I useless?"
"No. Who told you that?"
"One of the kids," Arthur's voice was a mere whisper.
"You're not useless. You're one of the most bravest, cleverest and of course, prattiest man ever alive."
He raised his eyebrow, a smile tinted on his lips, "Is prattiest even a word?"
I blinked, a blush raised from my neck, "S-Shut up."
It got better later though. The kid (Mordrid) apologised to Arthur and eventually began to cling onto him like a baby koala. Apparently (according to Arthur), Mordrid was a loner child and preferred the company of Arthur than his peers. Things got troublesome when I met the boy personally though. He glared right through my head.
Arthur and I never spoke of that day ever again.
I pulled apart the curtains and revealed the starry night sky; the crescent moon glowed like a light bulb in a dark room. My phone started ringing.
"Arthur, what's wrong?"
There was muffled laughter in the background and Arthur's voice sighed back, "Get dressed."
"What?" I blinked.
"Get dressed, write this down."
I hastily retrieved a pen and some paper, "Yeah?"
"Come to Café Pala Al Frances in Mercia, wear clothes that are not depressing, also Merlin."
"Hurry up," Arthur's tone teased.
"Ok, ok," I rolled my eyes, "I could've gone with you earlier jeez."
"That would defy the plan."
"Plan, what plan – "
I was interrupted with the phone's loud beeping. Arthur was secretive these days as well – not in the bad way, I meant he always had a surprise lurking in the corners of the apartment, or a sudden quirky message left on my phone. And of course, I was expected to oblige.
The wardrobe was a hell hole ready to explode. There was a nice, freshly ironed suit shoved in the corner with my rainbow vests and depressing T-shirts. Taking it out, I read the tag hooked over the tie.
"Wear this. Oh, and also, clean your god damn wardrobe Merlin."
Arthur… You smartarse twat. The clock ticked and demanded me to hurry up. The suit fitted nicely around me and was soft to the touch. I noted to compliment Arthur on his taste. And his handwriting, he had gotten a lot better writing without seeing – though I had no idea how he did it.
I took my wallet and headed to the bus stop.
The bus to Mercia was crowded. I could literally smell the musky scent of tired, overworked people and the scent of over dosed strawberry deodorant from the woman five people away from me. A small hand tugged at the hem of my suit.
I blinked, "Ah! I remember you!"
It was the little girl from my last trip to Mercia. Marie. She was smiling broadly at me. Amongst the people she was like a little beacon of light emitting an aura of sunflowers. I spied Helen her mother sitting at ease as she smiled at me. I waved and turned back to the hyper Spanish girl.
"What's wrong?" I queried.
She puffed her chest and blew up her cheeks, "Are you going to the café?"
I noted how her English had gotten more fluent, "Yes, are you going too?"
Her smile was fading and desperately tried to cheer her up, "Would you like a cupcake? I can buy one for you at the café."
"Do you like chocolate?"
"Yes I do very much, do you?"
She beamed her sunflower smile, "Me encanta chocolate!"
I assumed it meant 'I love chocolate'; "Would your mother like one too?"
Marie shook her head, "She is on diet."
Just as I was about to reply to her, Marie interrupted me hastily, "There was this golden man in preschool; he said to give this to you if I see you on bus."
She handed me a small folded note. I took it and she vanished from my sight. Unfolding it, there was a scramble of childlike handwriting and I couldn't contain my smile. Arthur was improving, but obviously not there yet. I spied for Marie, but she had already hopped off the bus with her mother. Helen grins and her eyes cheered me one.
The only problem was: what was she cheering me on for?
The stop to Mercia tings and I get off along with a couple of people. The atmosphere here was still humid and hot. It was like summer everyday here. The crowd of people hustled along the pathways and some on the roaring roads while I peered over their heads for the café sign and the romantic violin playing.
The quiet voice lured me to the side of the street. It was Sophia. Her eyes bright with mischief that I had to back away to make sure she wasn't going to whip out a knife or something.
"Arthur is waiting…" she winked before strutting off and vanished with the crowd.
I turned and right there in front of me was the café just down a new lane. I jogged my way up to it; the wind enjoyed messing up my hair and suit. I only stopped when I noticed a posh, shiny white limo with a pink ribbon tied on the hood. I was a little tired that I barely picked up the melodious sound of a piano singing inside the café.
Feeling hot and stuffy in the suit, I straightened myself up and quietly clicked open the door. The aroma of cakes and warm scented candles hugged my senses. I shut the door behind me and came face to face with an empty room filled with white and pink streamers, and a poster that conveyed boldly –
I jolted from shock.
It was Morgana who attacked me from behind with a tight bear hug. I let out a choked laugh. She let me go and I for the second time nearly had a heart attack. She was in a long white dress made for a queen. It flowed down to her feet and resembled a traditional Chinese dress. There were patterned of small cherry blossoms scattered loosely on the dress.
"Wait… What's going on?"
Morgana giggled, "I'm getting married!"
I blinked, "Now?"
She nodded eagerly, and that was when I felt someone tap me on the shoulder. Sir Bailey greeted me with a bright smile and I stared at them in query. Didn't Morgana just get the story today?
"I proposed to Morgana last year, but kept it a secret," Sir Bailey's smile never fades, "If you read through the last chapter, you would have realised that I had written in tiny letters 'meet me at the café in Mercia' not a proposal itself."
So, I should've read through the book properly.
Gwen let out a loud sigh, "You should have. Then you would've gotten married sooner!"
"Focus on marrying Lance!" Morgana and Sir Bailey shot back.
The whole room burst out laughing. Leaving Lance to sooth a fuming Gwen. My eyes couldn't help but flicker around the room for a golden haired man. But he was not there amongst the guests. There was a pinch of disappointment, but I kicked it away and focused on the 'going to get married' couple.
"Oh, Merlie…" are you serious, Morgana too? "Arthur's here, don't you worry."
This statement was accompanied by a wink. There was something about women winking at me today… Ladies, I'm a man who likes men… and rainbows. Just to make that clear.
Upon that reassurance by Morgana, I couldn't help by scuffle around, peeking through every nook and cranny for Arthur. In which he wasn't occupied in any.
Where was he?
I had to cease my activities as the priest – good old Anthony (our previous drama teacher) – entered the room in the most traditional get-up. He chants everything and the couple said their vows smoothly (thank god). We the audience, sat by the café tables cheering and clapping as Morgana pretty much ate Sir Bailey's face. I laughed at that.
The violin started singing again and Arthur was still not present. Gwen and Lance were huddled together and I felt rude to interfere with the couple. Uther was flirting with a woman I didn't recognise. She had brunette hair and square framed glasses. She reminded me of a small oak tree. Later I found out she was Freya's mother; a designer from Spain.
"Well!" we all stared up as Morgana climbed up the table despite her dress, "It's time to cut the cake!"
It was around then when everyone started singing 'Happy Birthday to you' and I flushed in embarrassment. I had forgotten about my birthday… Where was Arthur?
I picked up the knife and carefully sliced through the cake (which was the size of half of me). Why did they buy such a massive cake? I was in the midst of my trance, until the cake started growing fingers. I almost screamed as it exploded.
Everyone screamed – some squealed.
My eyes were closed, the knife clanged to the ground as someone embraced me at the front. I slowly opened my eyes. The smell of cake and the texture of cream smudged on my cheek. There was a lingering scent of lemons.
There was a chuckle in response, "Hey Merlin, happy birthday."
I almost cried. I hated surprises, but my heart was so light and was beating so fast from joy that I cried on Arthur's shoulder. He knew I was happy and held onto me.
"You… Almost gave me a heart attack."
"What, you didn't like it? Too troublesome?" Arthur whispered.
I laughed, "Only you can lead me on an errand like that."
"I know, that's why I did it," he joked as he let me go.
A cough interrupted our romantic moment.
"Well, since you've ruined the cake Arthur… Who wants to eat croissants and jam?!" Morgana cheers randomly.
Everyone rushed after her to the café kitchen where the owner was hiding. Arthur took my hand and pecked me on the cheek. I think back to the last blank page in the diary at home and how I was going to end it, with a cliché happy ending.
OH MY GOD! I finished it! :D Thank you everyone for reviewing and reading this (I give virtual hugs for all of you!). I am like dancing in my head from joy :P. Once again, thank you for reading Meeting You and Loving You :).