Last Chapter *sobs*

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Disclaimer: I don't own Merlin

Merlin nervously drummed his fingers on the prince's table. After a day in the dungeons Arthur was to be released soon and Merlin was terrified.

After waking up, Merlin barely had time to get his bearings before Ayra pounced on him, her frantic lips attacking his, her tears of joy leaving a salty taste in his mouth.

After Ayra calmed down she gave Merlin space to sit up in his cot (although she refused to let go of his hand). Merlin finally had a chance to look around him.

"What am I doing in base?" he asked "What happened to the battle? Is Arthur alright? Did we win?"

Ayra smiled "Yes we won, Morgouse and Morgana's army has retreated out of the city. Arthur though is currently sitting in the dungeons, most likely brooding over the fact that you have magic."

Merlin gaped like a fish as he tried to form words, but his voice seemed to have left him.

"A-A-A-Arth-th-th-er kno-kn-knows?" he managed to stutter "H-H-o-ow?"

Ayra took pity on him and told him everything. How Morgana had poisoned him and she had used her mother's curse.

"I suppose it finally was good for something." Ayra had joked

Then she told him how Arthur went to get the cup of life to save him and how he had ran into his father who had demanded he go to the dungeons.

"Luckily Uther ordered Gawaine and Lancelot to take him, so once they heard you were in trouble they helped Arthur retrieve the cup. But that's why Arthur's in the dungeons now because we want the king to think your dead."

Ayra finally told him how she, Leyerdon and Galahad had lent Julie energy so that she could keep him alive until Arthur returned with the cup and saved his life.

"So now were here. Zoe and I were waiting for you to wake up, but she went to the library for a moment, and I'm hiding from Uther because he wants to behead me."

"Who died?" Merlin whispered

"What?"

"Who died to save my life?"

Ayra didn't meet his eyes. She knew that Merlin would be angry that they had taken another life to save his, especially since there was a possibility that it could have been someone he cares about.

"Were not sure…." She felt Merlin stiffen and loosen his hold on her hand "But we think that it was someone in the infirmary who had been close to death already. Lancelot talked to Gwen and she said a man with a stab wound to the stomach had died around the same time you were saved." She finished quickly

Merlin sighed "But how did you know that one of you wouldn't have died? None of you has the power to mirror life and death!"

"It was a chance we were all willing to take Merlin"

"Ayra I could never have forgiven myself if something happened to any of you."

Ayra lightly kissed his fingers "Merlin, stop thinking of what could have happened and think about what is happening. We're all alive, Camelot is safe, and you are surrounded by people who care about you enough to lay down their lives for you. Including a certain prince who knew about your magic and took the risk anyway."

Merlin's head, which had been looking at the sheets, shot up to look at her.

"Do you think that Arthur doesn't mind my magic?"

Ayra shrugged "I don't know. But I know that no matter what his initial reaction is, he is a good enough friend to forgive you and accept you for who you are."

Merlin smiled and leaned in to lightly kiss Ayra.

Just as he pulled back Zoe entered the room.

"Oh good you're awake," she said putting her hands on her hips "I have a bone to pick with you! Did I not tell you to not fight in that battle? Did I not tell you that something would happen? You could have avoided a lot of worrying if you had just listened to me. You should have seen Ayra, I've never seen her so upset!"

"If I hadn't fought Camelot would have fallen. And everything worked out."

Zoe huffed "Camelot would have been just fine whether you got attacked by a magical poison or not"

Merlin shook his head and returned his attention to Ayra, there was no arguing with a determined Zoe. "So what is this I hear about you being a wreck while I was sick?"

Ayra blushed "I was worried that my best spell caster would be out of commission"

"Oh really?"

"Yes"

"Is that all?"

"Well, maybe…"

"Yes?"

"Maybe I was a little worried about your welfare"

"Only a little?"

"Well, maybe more than a little"

Merlin smiled and leaned in for another kiss, this one deeper and more passionate.

::::

Merlin focused on reality once more as the door to Arthur's chambers opened. Merlin jumped out of his seat as Arthur entered.

"Arthur…" he began but was cut off by the disheveled prince

"Merlin prepare a bath. Those dungeons are disgusting, there not fit for a pig let alone a human being. I feel like one of my horses."

Merlin couldn't help but take the bait "what is that supposed to imply?"

"That you do a terrible job of mucking out my stables."

"I do a great job of mucking out your stables"

"Merlin you barely get half the filth out of there, which is why I have to have you muck them out so often"

"Well I'd like to see how well you can shovel out horse poop"

"Merlin I'm a prince, princes don't muck out stables, we have servants do it for us."

"No, you don't muck out stables because you're a prat"

"Merlin you idiot you really can't talk to me like that"

"I'm sorry, is clotpole a better description?"
"Merlin!"

"Yes?" Merlin asked innocently

Arthur sighed "Never mind just finish getting the bath together."

"Yes sire!"

Merlin finished preparing Arthur's bath in silence. They're banter earlier had calmed his nerves for a little, but before long his old fears were resurfacing.

What would Arthur do? Would he hand Merlin into his father or would he continue this silly charade that nothing had happened? How could he just stand there like he didn't know? Didn't he have some kind of reaction? Even an angry one would be better than none.

Merlin finished drawing the bath and the prince sighed as he soaked in the warm water. Merlin left the prince's chambers to get Arthur's lunch.

All the way to the kitchens and back the warlock brooded over his future.

::::

When Merlin returned Arthur was out of the bath and dressed. Merlin placed the food on the table and emptied the bath into a drain outside the prince's chambers.

When he returned Arthur had finished eating and was sitting at the head of the table drumming his fingers, almost exactly as Merlin had been only an hour before.

"Do you need anything else sire?" Merlin asked nervously

Arthur sighed "Yes, sit down Merlin we need to talk."

Merlin anxiously sat next to the prince.

"Merlin, or Emrys, or whatever your real name is…" the prince began

"Merlin," the warlock interrupted "My real name is Merlin, only the druids call me Emrys."

"Ok then Merlin, I know you're a sorcerer…"

"Warlock" Merlin interrupted again "I'm a warlock, not a sorcerer."

"Ok Warlock then and I just wanted to tell you, in light of your services to Camelot, I won't turn you into my father."

Merlin smiled, he was safe! He never actually thought Arthur would turn him over to the king but it still felt good to hear him say it.

"But I'm not ready to fully come to terms with this yet," Arthur said as Merlin's smile faded

"What?"

"Look, I've been thinking about it. I understand why you didn't tell me and why you practice magic but my father is still King and as crowned prince I must remain loyal to him and his laws," Arthur said "I'm willing to overlook the fact that you are a warlock now, but I don't want anything to do with your magic.

"I just cannot choose between you and my father, so I figure this is a good compromise. You will not do any magic in front of me, and I will tell no one about your magic. If there is some kind of emergency that you and the Amddiffyn need to deal with we can have a code or something so that you can just go.

"I know that I should be doing more, like taking an active part in the Amddiffyn, but I can't. I cannot betray my father's trust. It would not only hurt my relationship with him, but also Camelot as a whole. But I also do not want to betray you Merlin because you are, well, the first real friend that I've had.

"I'm not saying I do not accept you Merlin. I understand you have magic and I guess that is part of who you are and I have accepted that. But I just do not want any part of it just yet."

Merlin smiled. Arthur accepted him, magic or no magic. Arthur's decision was more than he could ever hope for. Not only would having Arthur around while he did magic be weird, Merlin wasn't sure if he himself was ready for Arthur to help him with things concerning magic.

Everything would return to how it should be.

::::

Merlin bounded up the stairs three at a time. Ayra and the others need his help because Morgouse and Morgana were up to no good again. But before he could help them there was something Merlin had to do.

It was three weeks after the great battle, as it came to be known, and everything had returned to normal. The towns people returned to their regular routines, Gaius had Merlin picking herbs for him at the most inconvenient times and Arthur still wanted his horses mucked out on a regular basis.

And of course, the Amddiffyn kept fighting for Camelot in secret.

After the battle Uther had sent out a half hearted search for the members of the Amddiffyn. The king knew that the only person he could actually arrest as a member of the Amddiffyn was Ayra and she stayed in base at all times unless she was fighting with the rest of the Amddiffyn. And there was a silent agreement among the guards to leave figures in the dark green cloaks with unusually deep voices alone to conduct their business. One time a guard had even seen Galahad doing magic and had continued on his way.

Merlin burst into the prince's chambers panting heavily. The prince looked up from his reports and was about to say something but Merlin started tugging on his ears before Arthur could speak.

Arthur nodded solemnly and returned to his reports. Merlin sprinted back out of the room, on his way to help the others. Arthur was aware that Merlin would be busy tonight battling magical creatures in the forest and he would need another servant to take his place.

One day Arthur would do more than just give his servant time off to protect Camelot. One day the Once and Future King would join Emrys. Maybe that day would come before Uther's reign ended, but both young men knew that was most likely not going to happen. Arthur was already planning of repealing some of Uther's laws against magic, and he already had a certain warlock in mind to be his advisor on all things magic. He was even considering making a new position in the council: Court Magician for this certain warlock.

But until then Emrys and the Amddiffyn saved Camelot from behind the scenes while the Once and Future King pretended not to notice. But one day things would be different. One day things would change.

Well that's it. It's all over *continues sobbing*

Please leave me a review of the whole story, or just on this chapter however you want to do it.

I can't believe it's over! Pushing the completed button was one of the hardest things i've ever done.

I'm going to start another story soon which will most likely be called "No Escaping Destiny". It will be a short fic, like 3 or 4 chapters but check it out once its up!

Once again a huge thank you to all my amazing readers!