"How could you have done that?" Merlin voice was high with sorrow and anger as he spoke.

He was on the other side of Arthur's bedchambers in front of the flaming hearth. With each penetrating word the flames bounced high very nearly torching the sheepskin that was pin to the wall above it, as if Merlin's anger was connected to the inferno some how.

His words were thrown to Arthur Pendragon on the other side of the room who was standing by the window with his back hunched. The lighting from the newly pressed storm outlined him in a halo like glow, though to Merlin he was far from angelic at this moment.

Arthur looked down below to the rain soaked courtyard and watched with a sight that wasn't all there as guards cleaned up the scorched black stake. He followed a scant of ashes that were stirred up by the wind.

"I didn't have a choice, Merlin!" he finally found his voice and spoke to the other.

Merlin scrunched up his face and said in a deadly whisper," you always have a choice!'

Arthur in desperation looked to the ceiling as if he could reach salvation beyond the plank boards, but all was silent. "What do you want me to say?"

"How about sorry? You just killed my mother, Arthur! My mother who you knew as well as any didn't work the craft of magic. Why didn't you stop your father from killing her? Those books where on herb lore and those concoctions where just like the ones Gauis has in his stores! Why did it have to be you that raised the hand to give the signal and you didn't at least try to stop!" Merlin cried out at him and he honorably let tears flow free from his eyes.

"I- I can't say sorry," he muttered as he felt his skin prick with something other than coldness.

Merlin clenched his teeth and snarled at the prince as he slammed the door upon leaving. Arthur listend as the footsteps died away into the quite padding of rain and his own sniffling was left. He walked over to the two door framed door and slumped down and drew up his knees.

He always felt the most calmness in his room. In here behind closed doors, he could be whoever he wanted to be: a prince, a lover to Gwen, a friend, a brother, his own person. Though right know the room felt too small as if it where a quarantined room for the sick and ill willed. He took a deep breath, how do you apologize for killing a loved one?, he thought.

You don't, his mind whispered, not in words.

He closed his eyes and could see Hurnith as her pale flesh melted off her face and Arthur watched as Merlin sunk to his knees wailing. Merlin….he was lucky Arthur managed to make his father spare him, as it usually went if one in the family was in the craft all where doomed.

He licked his lips and hoped Merlin understood why he could not apologize to him. In the end Arthur realized as he laid his head against the door and shook….in the end…"I can't past any of this…my father's acts….his ruling…the deaths…with out you."