(AN: Forgot the Disclaimer for my last Camelot story so I hope this serves as both. I don't own anything to do with Camelot. I am intending to continue this one, though I am not sure whether to leave Morgan's Guilt the way it is or not.)
"I took pity on you…" Igraine gasped out to Morgan's horror.
"You're lying." She accused, feeling ice run through her veins as the woman gasped because of pain she had caused. Even as she accused the woman of lying to her Morgan had a sick feeling sink to the bottom of her stomach, knowing it was true. The woman had no reason to lie to her. Realizing she just killed the very woman that saved her life was a sobering fact. Her life had been full of misery, but at least she had lived. Looking down on Igraine as she cried in pain, Morgan realized she must have been lied to. She knew the nuns had never been completely honest with her, one reason she had left them in the middle of the night to begin with, but she had never expected this. Sybil had always told her it was Uther that sent her away, but if Igraine was telling the truth then she was the one who had lied. If Sybil had been the one lying to her, then Morgan had played into the woman's hands once again. Sybil had always been adamant about Morgan bringing the coven over once she was queen, but slowly Morgan began to realize just how far back that plan went. Sensing her mistake, Morgan took a ragged breath, causing Igraine to look up at her. Morgan caught her gaze, knowing she didn't know how to reverse what she had just done. Igraine was going to bleed to death and she didn't know how to stop it. Morgan did not care for the woman, but she had saved her life. Morgan had never considered this woman as more than Uthar's whore; even now it was hard to think of her in positive terms. But then her day, that one day, she had taken as Igraine flashed before her eyes quickly. The woman was kind to everyone else, maybe she should have thought this out more if only for that reason. She had gotten to know the people recently, her death wouldn't go over well even if a prisoner. Now it seemed all but too late as Igraine clung to the side of her bed, fixing Morgan with such a sad gaze that she decided to save the woman. But Sybil had always been the one to help her with all things magic. She had never been able to do anything Sybil didn't teach her, and she had never taught her white magic, only dark. The nunnery hadn't been a place for hopeful magic and the nuns had seen no use for spells you could not use against another person. Dropping the blade still in her grasp quickly, hearing it clatter to the floor beside the door, Morgan slid across the ground to the former queen.
"Oh my god, Igraine what have I done? Why didn't you tell me you stupid woman!" Morgan half way yelled, not going to let the tears fall as she pressed her hands over Igraine's. Igraine's blood slipped through her fingers as if she had tried to grab water and it fell onto the knees of her gown unnoticed. With Morgan's sudden pressure on her wound, Igraine let out a cry of agony as she fell to her back on the floor. Taking a shaky breath, Igraine's eyes followed Morgan's every movement with slow understanding as the young woman tried to pack her wound with the nearby blanket, smearing blood on both the object and her bodice.
"You wouldn't have listened." Igraine cried, in pain like she had not felt since child birth. Morgan looked up at her eyes again before she took a deep shaky breath.
"I cannot…I do not know how to fix this." Morgan admitted after seeing the faint glimmer of hope in the dying woman's eyes.
"Think a moment Morgan." Igraine pleaded, not knowing if she could be saved, not liking having to plead with Morgan but doing it anyway. Arthur's cold form crossed her vision, causing Igraine's resolve to life fade considerably. But then Merlin's disapproving glare replaced her dead son. There were others that relied on her, and she
couldn't give up no matter how she wished to join Arthur. Morgan had worn her face; maybe she knew more than she thought Igraine hoped.
Morgan took a few deep breaths, trying desperately to rack her brain for any magic that would save the queens life. She knew none she realized with a frustrated cry. Sybil was the one to come up with magic in her life. Thinking of Sybil let Morgan's mind wander through several things she did not wish to think about at that moment before she realized what she needed to do; though she was still hesitant to do it.
She had three options at that moment and Morgan didn't like any of them. Pushing harder on Igraine's stomach Morgan winced slightly from her thoughts though Igraine thought it was the gore. The easiest option was to allow Igraine to die as she had originally planned, but if she died Morgan knew she would regret it after finding out this kind of truth. Igraine could tell her things about Uther, things Morgan had always wanted to know, but had cast the childhood curiosity from her. Igraine was Arthur's mother, and she had no doubt that she would be punished by him when he learned of what she had done to the woman whether she lived or died. She was not naive enough to believe him as dead as reports claimed. She had just hoped to be crowned before he returned, possibly horribly disfigured at the very least. If Igraine died she would be one less person in her way, but Morgan wondered if she had every really been in her way since the woman did not have a close relationship with her son.
The second option was to seek Sybil's help, but Morgan doubted the woman would assist her. It was not in Sybil's nature to be overly cruel, but Morgan knew first hand she would not do anything that would jeopardize her future plans. Morgan truly believed that Sybil cared for her, she just didn't know how much. Sybil had wanted to kill Igraine when Morgan had assumed her life, but wisdom had kept her alive. Morgan could not ask Sybil for help without seriously considering what would happen after, and she honestly did not, for once, know what would happen when she didn't let the woman die even though she had tried removing her.
The third, and possibly the less desirable option was to seek out the help of the only other person she had met that knew magic; Merlin. Morgan didn't doubt Merlin would be able to save the former queen. He had saved Uther when she was a child, and he would have more invested this time. Though she thought if she ran for Merlin she would have to publicly release him since she knew where he would be. Most of her plan had involved Merlin and Igraine being out of the way, she doubted she could continue with the rest of her plan for the crown to be on her head in a few hours. She was so close, she could just let Igraine die and it would all be hers. Arthur was gone, for now or forever she didn't know, she was the rightful heir, but Merlin would see to it she never sat on her throne if she released him now.
"Do not move." Morgan commanded Igraine, who let out a sigh of pain when Morgan shifted her away.
"Where are you going?" Igraine questioned frantically, not trusting Morgan at all for good reason.
"I don't know how to fix this, but Merlin will." Morgan conceded, a tear falling from her eye for her weakness, as she all put flew out the door, her gown spattered in the former queen's blood. Morgan did not stop to console the worried cries of those she passed, but rather ignored them. Though it was harder than it seemed since everyone wanted to stop her and ask if she was alright. Some even called down the hall as she ran, she must have looked worse than she thought.
"MOVE!" Morgan commanded when she found her way into the hall blocked by those that had come to watch her coronation, something she did not want to think about just then. Whipping her head around, thankful that Sybil was on the other side of the castle, she couldn't find Merlin for the crowd. She had ordered him chained in the room, so he was suppose to be here! Sending a silent prayer to whomever would listen, Morgan moved closer to the throne, a step higher than everyone else. It was then that she saw him, chained to a pillar to her left. He looked dejected, sad even, and a little thrill made its way down Morgan's spine vindictively for having gotten to him. Shaking it off Morgan took a shaky breath and stepped forward. Even as one of her guards attempted to catch her forearm, Morgan rushed over to Merlin without thinking about it anymore. Merlin's eyes widened at her approach, seeming to think something sinister from the change of expression on his face and Morgan nearly bowed her head in shame for having felt elated at his misery. But it would not do for the people to see her weakened with regret.
"Release him." Morgan commanded, everyone freezing to look at her as if she had grown a second head.
"I said release him!" She yelled, malicious intent clear in her tone. A scrawny looking man, who wore mismatched armor, naming him a Camelot guard, moved forward and unlocked Merlin's hands. The irons echoed against the stone as the hall watched the interaction in stunned silence. Merlin jerked the leather gag from his mouth and turned toward Morgan in the same breath. Morgan's guards moved to step in front of her, but Morgan knew she was on a time sensitive mission. She had stabbed Igraine so that she would die slowly, but at a certain point she doubted there would be anything they could do, after all Morgan had been told Uther had still died with Merlin by his side.
"Come with me now." Morgan commanded Merlin in a hushed whisper, resisting the urge to roll her eyes when he did not move but glared at her.
"Come with me now criminal!" She said, louder to catch the attention of the gathered crowd, trying to give him a meaningful glance though she worried it was little more than a glare of frustration. He was the one enamored with public opinion and she would use that to her advantage.
"Where is Igraine?" He asked, still not moving. It seemed he would not be moved until he knew either, causing Morgan's breath to hitch only a moment before she grabbed his arm. Several of the guards around them unsheathed their swords as confusion clouded their expressions. Merlin moved to defend himself as Morgan moved, but stopped when she merely tightened her fingers around his sleeved elbow. Looking deep into Merlin's eyes, Morgan almost wished she could just tell him silently with her gaze.
"Now." She said, yanking him forward as one of her guards prodded him from behind with a short sword. Though he had no choice but to comply Morgan felt a shiver go down her spine at his compliance. Not wasting any time however, Morgan all but dragged him across the great hall to the staircase. It seemed he decided to cooperate once his feet hit the last stair since her guards were calling for her desperately behind them. Morgan ignored them, dismissing them with a wave of her hand. Merlin's eyes widened, clearly unsettled by Morgan at that moment, but she continued to drag him behind her as she broke into a run. Skidding to a halt outside Igraine's doorway, the clattering of armored guards sounding behind them Morgan withdrew her hand from Merlin's sleeved elbow as if burnt. Throwing the door open without a word Morgan held it open for Merlin. From her vantage point Morgan made out Igraine, still gasping on her side where she had left her, but Merlin could not to her frustration.
"What are you up to Morgan?" He growled, staring at her when he should have been moving further into the room where he would discover Igraine. Morgan matched his glare with her own, choosing the direct approach instead of words. Grabbing his elbow once again Morgan tugged for all she was worth, slipping from the door as he almost refused to move. The heavy wooden door hit Morgan from behind as Merlin finally took in Igraine, lying in a pool of her own blood. Shoving the door backward with a kick Morgan moved to intercept the unit of guards that had ignored her command. Merlin forgot all about her as he broke out of her grasp and slide to Igraine's side as she had done earlier.
"Igraine?" He whispered desperately as he collected the woman into his arms gently. Morgan turned from the scene to glare at the Camelot guard she found before her. Moving forward so that the door slammed shut just behind her she let her desperation phase into anger as they questioned her.
"My Lady Morgan, is everything alright?" The man, the same who had released Merlin, asked her and Morgan resisted the urge to light him on fire.
"Leave. Everything is alright. I required Merlin's assistance. Nothing else would have seen me release the criminal. I assure you he is of no danger here, though if I need you I will call. Please stay here until then." Morgan gushed, trying desperately to play the concerned monarch even as the men gave her questioning looks. She was not Arthur, she did not possess the level of patience anyone had ever wanted her to.
"But My Lady Morgan, Merlin is dangerous." One of her guards spoke up and she snapped her glare on him. One of her guards should know better she thought quickly.
"I am capable of handling myself gentlemen, I will call should I require your assistance. I'm afraid that Lady Igraine is ill. Now excuse me." She ground out through clenched teeth. She cut off the Camelot guard's questions by making her way into Igraine's room in one swift movement, letting the door fall heavily to announce the end of the conversation and her entrance at the same time. Bringing her eyes to the scene in front of her Morgan almost wished she had stayed in the hallway as something in her cried in pain. She did not know what exactly hurt, but she just knew something did seeing them. Igraine lay in Merlin's arms, her fingers tracing the man's bloodied tears with a smile. Morgan did not know what the woman would be smiling at, but she stared at her a moment. Morgan looked away for a moment afterward, taking in the ivy covered window panes before she looked back at the pair, steeling her resolve. Merlin was shaking, and Morgan realized she knew that kind of shaking. It took four steps to join the pair and Morgan felt every move as if she was gliding across broken glass. Kneeling behind Igraine, the woman finally realized they were not alone when Merlin's eyes turned to her even as his mouth continued in a whispered chant. Igraine turned her eyes to Morgan heavily, her hand not moving from Merlin's cheek. Morgan met her questioning gaze, but she did not expect what came out of Igraine's mouth.
"Stop him…he will kill himself…not for me…"the dying woman pleaded with Morgan, knocking the breath out of her. She saw the desperation in the woman's eyes, nothing else would have her beg from her murderer Morgan realized, but she was hesitant to stop Merlin. She didn't want Igraine to die either, but the woman's devotion to Merlin was heart breaking. The woman lay dying and she thought of only Merlin? She was not the same woman that stood by as Uther knocked her around it appeared. Tearing her eyes from Igraine's, blinking the tears back rapidly, she turned her gaze back to Merlin's. Blood leaked from his eyes, something Morgan was more familiar with than Igraine. Merlin was only halfway to death she realized, but Igraine would not know that. The overwhelming sense of weakness and pain that came after the blood tears was what Morgan had never wished to feel again, and she realized she had stared at Merlin for too long after a moment. Picking up her lifeless hands Morgan put them over Merlin's, causing his eyes to snap to her face even as hers traveled to his lips. Morgan tried to make out what he was saying, though it was hard as he chanted so fast and so low that she was reduced to reading his lips.