HAPPY NEW YEAR! GUNG HEY FAT CHOY!

Okay. I updated. Told ya I would :P OH! B-4 I forget…I have a poll up on my profile regarding FITN (Fighting in the Nightmare) pairings. Please vote. :D

Enjoy

-Breyerfan123

-MMMM-

As soon as the door shut, Merlin practically ran to the armory. He grabbed all of the hunting equipment and jogged to the stables. As soon as the stables were in sight, he slowed down to a walk.

What was with Arthur today? Merlin wondered. Merlin had seen Arthur in some pretty foul moods before, but it was never this bad. He quickly made a list of everything that could make Arthur act this way. 1. I screwed up…bad. Merlin shook his head. He hadn't messed up. He was 99.9% sure -no, scratch that- 100% sure Arthur had never said anything about a hunting trip. 2. He upset because Gwen and Elyan are gone for Midwinter's to visit an aunt. 3. Arthur liked being a prat. It hit him with a bang. That's it!

When some passing servants gave Merlin a strange look, he realized he had said that last part aloud. Merlin ducked his head in embarrassment and hurried the rest of the way to the stables.

It was because of Gwen that Arthur was acting like a prick. She would be gone all day and possibly tomorrow, and Arthur was missing her. Merlin smiled to himself as he led Arthur's horse out of its stall. Now that he had found the reason why Arthur was acting like a prat, it wasn't so bad. Merlin knew better than to provoke Arthur when Arthur was upset about Gwen.

He whistled to himself as he tacked up Arthur's horse, and tacked up a horse for himself too. As soon as he had finished, he saw Arthur striding over to him. He gathered up Arthur's horse's reins, ready to hand them to Arthur.

Arthur scowled at Merlin and yanked the reins out of his grasp. "Give me that." He growled. Arthur then mounted his horse and took off. Arthur raced all the way to the gates before turning back to look at his servant. Merlin was struggling to get onto his horse, and fell spectacularly into the mud. He grumbled before mounting his own horse and grabbing the hunting gear. "Oh, come on Merlin. Hurry up. Don't be such a girl." Arthur called with a slight sneer.

-MMMM-

"Prat." Merlin said after he had caught up with the prince. They were now in the forest, and said prince was currently scouting for signs of animals. Arthur turned to look at him.

"What did you call me?" Arthur asked in a dangerous voice. The sound of it gave Merlin goosebumps.

"Ummm, nothing sire. It must be the wind." Merlin replied hastily.

Arthur rolled his eyes. He didn't bother pointing out that there was no wind at all. It had been calm ever since they left Camelot. His manservant could be such an idiot at times. "Fine then, but please shut up!" Snapped Arthur crossly.

"Alright, alright. I can tell when I'm not wanted."

"Can you?"

Merlin grumbled…again. "You wouldn't be acting this way if Gwen were here."

"I heard that. And lucky for you Gwen isn't here."

"No, lucky for you that Gwen isn't here. She would be very cross with your behavior. Wouldn't she?" Merlin smiled to himself. He had got Arthur now. "Well, wouldn't she?"

Arthur just sighed. It really was no use arguing with Merlin. Besides, he thought, all of this racket would have scared off all the potential prey for miles. So Arthur said nothing, and just picked up the speed and brought his horse to a canter. Merlin, who was very smug now, was a tad bit surprised when Arthur started cantering, but he assumed that he had won that fight and Arthur was just being a sore loser. He once more brought his horse up next to Arthur's as Arthur slowed to a trot. Merlin gave Arthur a considering look before saying, "Alright, what's wrong? You've been acting more prattish than usual. You can tell me you know. Is it Gwen? 'Cause if it is, then-" Arthur held up a hand for him to stop talking. He turned to look at the servant.

"Merlin. Just because I don't have time to argue with servants doesn't mean that something is wrong." Arthur stated firmly. This would have persuaded anyone but Merlin to drop the conversation.

"But this isn't an argument." Merlin stated firmly.

"Yes it is."

"No, it isn't."

"Yes it is."

"No, it isn't."

"Yes it is."

"No, it isn't. This is just contradiction." Merlin cried out in frustration.

"It is not!" Arthur claimed indignantly.

"It is! You're just contradicting me!"

"No, no, no, no, no, no. Nonsense." The prince denied hurriedly.

"All of this is futile." Declared Merlin, throwing his hands up in exasperation. There was just no getting it through the prince's big head.

"No it isn't"

"Contradiction isn't the same as having an argument!"

"It can be."

"No! It can't! An argument is a collective series of statements to establish a definite proposition."

"No it isn't." Arthur was grasping at straws now.

"Yes it is! It isn't just contradiction."

"Look, if I argue with you, I must take up a contrary position." Arthur reasoned with Merlin.

"But it isn't just saying: No it isn't."

"Yes it is."

"No it isn't!" There was a pause as both boys sat confused. Then Merlin spoke up, "An argument is an intellectual process. Contradiction is just the automatic gang saying of anything the other person says!"

"No it isn't."

"Yes it is!"

"Not necessarily." This went on for a while before both men were quite out of breath. They sat on their horses in silence for a moment. Merlin opened his mouth to say something, when Arthur suddenly raised his hand for silence. Merlin closed his mouth and shot Arthur a confused look. Arthur either didn't notice or didn't care. Arthur slowly moved his hand towards his scabbard. Slowly, he withdrew his sword; Merlin copied his action. Their swords made a 'Shhhhing' sound as they came out.

Arthur looked around stealthily. His eyes scanned the trees for any sign of movement. He dismounted, and from the sounds behind him, and the low oath, he assumed Merlin had too.

Merlin turned to look at Arthur. When he saw Arthur dismount, he did too, but got his foot caught in the stirrup and crashed to the ground. He swore when he hit the ground. That was going to bruise. Merlin shot Arthur another puzzled look, but Arthur had his back turned to Merlin, and was staring out into the forest. Merlin couldn't stand it any longer.

"What's going on? What are you looking at?" As soon as the words left his mouth, Arthur spun around to face the warlock, with a thunderous look on his face. If Merlin didn't know any better, he would have thought Arthur was PMSing. On second thought, maybe…Merlin shook his head to clear his thoughts.

That was when the bandits jumped out from their hiding spots.

-MMMM-

Hahahaha! A cliffie! I'm so evil ;D A virtual cookie to whoever can guess where that quote was from!

I forgot last chapter soooooooo… Disclaimer: I don't own Merlin, BBC does, obviously. Say it with me- fan…fiction. I'm the fan, so this must be the…? Figure it out. It's not that hard.

K, that was my disclaimer for the rest of the story.

-Breyerfan123