We actually wrote most of this at the beginning of the summer.'Tis true. Don't ask. Unless you want to know more than you ever wanted to know about our lives. Let's just say it's been a traumatizing summer.
Anyways, the style of this story might be experimental. Tell us what you think of it :)
Just in case you get to the end and wonder why this is T: There's only a super minor suggestive statement and references to drunkenness. We're just trying to stay on the safe side.
Disclaimer: Me... No own Merlin. Zab... No own Merlin either.
Sir Boris walked proudly through the dungeons. He was still basking in the honor he was bestowed. He had been knighted only last night.
He didn't remember much of the party after the knighting. He had been drunk. Judging by the rumors he had heard earlier today, something had gone terribly awry. Somebody had done something to the palace walls. The most common rumor claimed it had something to do with ropes. But there were so many theories that one couldn't help but be hopelessly confused. Sir Boris was certain of only two things: the story about crowns dangling outside the palace walls couldn't be true, and Prince Arthur certainly wouldn't have been involved in whatever havoc had occurred. He wasn't involved, even if he was in the dungeons today. And last night.
Sir Boris was about to turn a corner. Just then someone spoke. Sir Boris stopped.
"You're going to the stocks tomorrow," a voice taunted. It seemed familiar.
"So?" Sir Boris recognized this voice as Prince Arthur. "You're going to the stocks too."
"I'm not the pampered Crown Prince of Camelot," the first voice replied. "It's a regular occurrence for me."
Sir Boris was taken aback. Whoever that was, how did he dare speak to the prince that way?
"I've been in the stocks many times," the prince admitted flatly.
"When did this miracle happen? I've known you for four years, and I've never seen you in the stocks."
"I stopped giving my father reasons to put me in the stocks."
There was a brief moment of silence.
"Shut up, Merlin. I'm not telling you."
"I didn't say anything."
Sir Boris's jaw dropped. Such disrespect. He had never before heard anyone step quite this far out of line. He kept thinking the boy will amend his words, use the proper tone with his lord. Instead, the rudeness seemed to worsen with each sentence. Perhaps this lowly servant thought he could get away with his behavior because his better was rotting in the same cell with him.
"Besides," Merlin continued, "this is your fault."
"It is not," the prince corrected, "It's your fault."
The servant made a straggled sound of indignation. "My fault? I'm just an innocent victim of your planning."
"There is nothing wrong with my plans," Arthur said calmly. "Your inability to follow them is what got us into this mess."
"I wasn't the one who got caught in the act."
"How do you explain this then?"
"They knew you had an accomplice. And I'm the only one stupid enough to follow one of your plans."
"Finally!" Prince Arthur exclaimed.
"You admitted that you're an idiot," Arthur said with immense satisfaction.
"You did that first. Back in the throne room. You were practically gloating."
"The game was up when you started singing about it."
"You started it. You were louder too. Giggling—"
"I didn't giggle," Arthur interrupted.
Merlin ignored him, "About how you tied them up. So that you could redecorate the castle!"
Arthur huffed. "At least I wasn't hugging everyone."
"I didn't hug that many people," Merlin defended.
"Not for lack of trying. At first, no one thought too much about it. That is, until you hugged my father."
Boris heard the servant make the noise that he wanted to make. A gagging noise.
"That—No... I'd be dead if that happened."
Why isn't he dead?
"You're lucky to be alive," Prince Arthur said. "You even tried to hug the knights that were dragging you out of the throne room."
"No," Merlin moaned, "that's not true. You're making this up to make yourself feel better."
After a moment Arthur spoke, "Are you doubting my word?"
"No," the stupid servant said hastily, "I'm doubting your memory." Sir Boris inaudibly gasped.
Master and servant were silent for a moment. Sir Boris suddenly realized that he hadn't moved since he started eavesdropping. He almost took a step. Then he heard the idiot speak again.
"You did play with Gwen's dress a lot. Some people thought it was disgraceful."
The effect was immediate. The crown prince babbled, "I need to see her."
"Arthur," Merlin attempted to cut in.
"I need to get out and apologize to her."
"Arthur, calm down."
"She deserves an apology," Arthur continued. "And anything else she wants. She already de—"
"Arthur!" The manservant laughed, "It wasn't that bad. All you did was swish her dress a bit. And pluck at her sleeve."
"Then again, she wouldn't kiss you last night," Merlin teased.
"Why?" The prince sounded a little miffed.
"She laughed something about waiting until you were sober."
"Ah. Well, I would have already gotten that kiss if you hadn't gotten us caught."
Sir Boris thought he heard an indignant grunt.
"Me get us caught? This coming from the man who was giggling on the way back from stealing his father's clothes."
"I don't giggle. And you were doing your fair share of 'giggling,' Merlin."
"Why I did that is beyond me."
"It wasn't even funny. Whose bright idea—"
"Yours," Merlin stated flatly. Part of Sir Boris wasn't even surprised anymore at the servant's insolence.
"I don't think so. It's too idiotic to be anything but your idea."
"It was your idea," Merlin insisted. His voice dropped slightly, "And I want to know how you dragged me into this mess."
"I told you the idea," Arthur answered. "Then you could barely contain your excitement."
Sir Boris's eyebrows furrowed. That didn't make sense. Hadn't the prince just said—
"Argh!" Merlin's voice broke through Boris's thoughts. "I can't believe I thought that was funny-What?— You said you didn't know who came up with the brilliant idea of let's-tie-up-the-king's-clothes-and-make-a-line-with-them."
"Merlin, how often do you lie to me?"
"Never, sire." Sir Boris was stunned that the little twerp had somehow managed to become respectful.
"Ouch!" Merlin's voice rang out. "What was that for?"
"Because you are a complete idiot!" the prince snapped flippantly.
"Because I listen to you," the servant's impertinence spiked through once more. "Did you know that every time I've been in the stocks it has been a direct result of listening to you?"
"No, it isn't."
"Really?" Boris noticed that Merlin didn't sound repentant. Instead, he sounded as though he was going to further justify his behavior. "Remember when you wanted to spend time with Sophia?"
"Mention that again and you won't live to see the stocks," Arthur threatened.
"The first time we met—"
"As I recall, you tried to hit me. Not my fault."
"You goaded me. You practically ordered me to." Boris heard a sigh. "And now we have this mess."
"'This mess,'" Arthur snarled, "is your fault."
"Who insisted that we have a drinking game with Gwaine because he was bored?"
"It's not like I had to drag you," Arthur retorted.
There was a heavy pause before Prince Arthur spoke again, "Where is Gwaine anyway?"
"I don't think he got caught," Merlin answered, sounding ever so slightly unsure.
"Of course not. He must've passed out."
Another small silence.
Arthur exclaimed, "It's Gwaine's fault we got caught!" Sir Boris took a step back in surprise as the prince's voice got higher, "He couldn't keep his lips off the bottle long enough to give a decent distraction!"
"Well, he did pass out," Merlin's voice become conspiratorial.
"This is Gwaine's fault," Arthur reiterated.
"Yeah," Merlin agreed.
Suddenly, the prince burst into laughter, "I'm surprised my father isn't looking for some made up sorcerer."
"Why would he want to do that?" Merlin squeaked.
"Don't be such a girl. There aren't any sorcerers roving about Camelot. A stark raving sorcerer wouldn't waste his time knocking things off the castle wall," Arthur sounded as though, whatever his conclusion was, it was obvious. "You're not going to get murdered in your bed."
Just then Sir Boris realized that he had been eavesdropping for a considerable amount of time when he should have been patrolling the dungeons. He shook himself. He stalked forward, pretending as though he hadn't taken a single pause in his duty. Prince Arthur and his manservant came into view. The two were sitting with their backs against the cell wall. Arthur was in the corner and Merlin sat closer to the middle of the back wall.
"Ah," Arthur said pleasantly. "I was beginning to worry that all the knights had abandoned their posts. Is Camelot under attack?"
"No, sire," Sir Boris replied respectfully, sounding calmer than he felt. "The warning bell would have—"
"The warning bell can be silenced," Arthur interrupted dismissively. He returned to his original question, "Then you are sure that Camelot isn't under attack?"
"Yes, sire," Boris said, his face white.
"Excellent!" Arthur chirped excitedly, which frightened Boris. "In that case, I want you to bring Sir Gwaine down here."
"Sire," Sir Boris answered carefully, "the king has ordered that your orders be ignored."
Arthur smiled dangerously. "No matter." He shot a meaningful look at his servant. "Merlin."
"What? No!" Merlin panicked as though he knew where this was going. Boris wished he had that luxury. He stared as Arthur and Merlin argued using nothing but sour facial expressions.
"Fine!" Merlin snapped. "Sir..." He trailed off.
"Boris," Arthur supplied.
"Boris," Merlin repeated. "You are to arrest Sir Gwaine for—" (Arthur gave a warning look.) "For the same reason we're here."
"I must continue my patrol," Sir Boris declined in an affronted tone. He was not going to take orders from a servant.
That night at the Rising Sun Tavern Sir Boris sat drinking with a small group of knights.
"You'll never believe what Prince Arthur's servant did!" Boris announced.
The other knights leaned in, all nearly holding their breaths in anticipation.
"That boy dared to talk back to his master," Sir Boris declared vehemently. There was sense of satisfaction in telling on the rat's behavior.
However, instantly, there was a collective groan of "is that it?"
Sir Boris's satisfaction sank. He was confused. This couldn't be normal.
"I forgot," Sir Leon chuckled, "you're new."
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BTW, we do think that Arthur is familiar with the stocks. It's because of Arthur's attitude in "The Poison Chalice" episode. He sounded as though going to the stocks was a viable punishment to be used on him. That is all.
Oh, for those of you who read "Crossover Blues": That is not quite the same Boris. We happily change Sir Boris's age, time of becoming a knight, etc. to fit a story's need for a stupid knight. Don't worry, we stay consistent inside each fic. Sir Boris isn't going to spontaneously grow younger in "Crossover Blues." Or older for that matter. We're crazy. But not that crazy.