The Sword in the Stone Part Two
In a land of Myth and a time of magic,
The destiny of a great kingdom rests on the shoulders of two young people,
Merlin and Mira-Liana
Quick as they could, Merlin and Mira-Liana fled into the woods in the direction of the tunnels, trying to evade the remaining men from Helios's forces who were being led by Gaheris. They eventually came upon the tunnel entrance, at which point Merlin and Mira-Liana decided to do one last trick, something their enemies would never dream of expecting.
"Get into the tunnels and wait for us there, we'll take things from here," said Merlin.
"And just what is it you intend to do?" asked Tristan.
The twins smirked.
"Summon three old friends," said Mira-Liana. "Now go, quickly! We'll be right behind you."
They fled and then Merlin and Mira-Liana joined hands and turned to the skies once more. They spoke in the Old Tongue and called upon their friends.
Just as they joined their friends and family in the tunnels, the dragons, Kilgarrah, accompanied by Aithusa and Saefir—both of whom had grown considerably over the past few months—let out enormous roars and appeared within seconds of being summoned.
"TAKE COVER!" cried Agravain, as all three dragons attacked them all with fire.
Merlin and Mira-Liana did not stay to watch as they rejoined their comrades in the tunnel.
"What on earth was all that noise? What did you do?" asked Tristan.
"What none of them were expecting—my sister and I summoned the last three dragons," said Merlin.
"Incredible. You're a Dragonlord and Dragonlady?" breathed Isolde. "Will wonders never cease?"
"Are you sure we're not going to be followed?" asked Arthur.
"If Kilgarrah, Aithusa and Saefir have their say, we certainly won't," said Mira-Liana. "Come on, we need to keep moving. This way."
With a few torches to light their way, they journeyed deep into the tunnels. They were getting close to the end of their journey when a noise startled them.
"I thought you said that the dragons dealt with them!" hissed Tristan.
"Some of them must've escaped," whispered Gwen. "What do we do?"
"We'll deal with it," said Merlin, as he and his sister started to walk away. "Mir and I know these tunnels. Gaheris and his men don't. That's an advantage."
Arthur grabbed Mira-Liana's arm as she started to walk away. "We'll keep going, but if you're not back with us, in five minutes, I'm coming after you both and if you both die, I'll kill you," he whispered.
Mira-Liana nodded and then she and Merlin went off.
Merlin and Mira-Liana snuck through the tunnels as stealthy as they could. Soon, they came to a stop for a moment, keeping their backs to one of the cave walls and knowing their enemies were just around the corner.
Are you ready, Mir?
You know I am, Merlin.
On the count of three. One…two…three!
They leapt out of their hiding place and faced Gaheris and the half a dozen remaining men.
"Oh, hello, boys!" said Mira-Liana.
"GET THEM!" yelled Gaheris.
"If you want us, you have to catch us first!" said Merlin.
He and his sister burst into a run, leading their pursuers into a trap. They quickly came to a dead end just as their pursuers caught up with them.
"Merlin! Mira-Liana!" barked Gaheris. "You two!"
Silently, the twins turned around and faced their enemies, keeping their hands intertwined so they could use their combined powers.
"Where's Arthur?" demanded Gaheris. "Tell me and I might spare you."
"Unlike like you, Gaheris, we don't sell out family," said Merlin.
"Don't toy with me! No doubt you were the ones behind the storm attack in Elador. You're too weak to use your powers after that," said Gaheris, scoffing. He hadn't even shackled them yet, which was a foolish thing to do.
"I'd be careful if I were you, Gaheris," warned Mira-Liana.
Gaheris frowned. "What're you talking about?"
They both sighed.
"You know, you brought this on yourself, Gaheris," said Merlin. "Arthur cared about you. You meant a great deal to him once. You could've been part of our family if you hadn't been so quick to side with Agravain."
"As if one of the people responsible for my sister's death would mean anything to me!" he hissed. "Now, enough of this! Where's Arthur? Tell me now! Or I'll have to kill you both where you stand."
The twins shared a glance and then shook their heads at Gaheris.
"We don't think so," said Mira-Liana.
They were tired from their earlier spell work, yes, but they had just enough strength for another small spell or two.
Without even speaking, their eyes flashed gold and suddenly, Gaheris and his men all flew into the rocks. Gaheris was the only one to survive the attack and he shakily rose up after a moment.
"You two can still use your magic! But how?" he demanded. "And why do you hold each other's hands while using y your spells?"
"We were born with magic and unlike other practitioners, we're magically linked in many ways and our powers are strongest when we're combined," said Merlin, cooly.
"Of course," gasped Gaheris. "I should've seen it before. Two old practitioners tried to save Uther while you two just happened to be gone and Arthur trusted them completely, you act just like Agravain said they did, they knew everything about Agravain and even managed to haunt his dreams. You two are Emrys and Emrysa, aren't you!"
Their faces were unreadable.
"Those are our names among the Druids, yes," said Mira-Liana.
"Arthur's known about your true identities this entire time, hasn't he?" said Gaheris. It wasn't a question. "No wonder you were always at his side."
"We've been at his side this whole time because he's our King and he's family," said Merlin, coldly. "Something you could never understand."
Gaheris chuckled. "Well, I must admit, I am impressed, you two. You've revealed much and yet concealed from others the same amount. Perhaps we're more alike than you think."
This earned him a very harsh glare from them both.
Gaheris held out his hand to them. "We can work together and you'll gain more from me and Agravain than you could ever dream of from Arthur."
Merlin and Mira-Liana's glare intensified.
"We are nothing like you," growled Mira-Liana.
"And we would die before joining you and Agravain," said Merlin.
They raised their hands once more and then magically flung Gaheris away just as he tried to swing his sword at them once more. He was a threat to them no more.
They then left the dead end and were getting close to catching up with the others when they were met by Arthur, who looked frantic.
"Are you both all right?" he asked.
"We're fine. Why? Were you worried?" teased Merlin.
"Of course I was worried. I'm not about to lose my wife and best friend," said Arthur, rolling his eyes. "What happened back there?"
"Let's just say that Gaheris will threaten us no more," said Mira-Liana, softly.
"As am I, but he chose his fate when he betrayed us," said Arthur, softly. "Come on, we need to keep moving."
They nodded and continued their journey onward. Though Mira-Liana kept Arthur's free hand in hers to reassure him that she was all right.
They eventually made it out of the tunnels and decided to head to the Forest of Escetir where they would most likely be safe and perhaps even find their friends.
Several hours later, they made camp.
Merlin and Mira-Liana were given time to get some sleep after the long night they'd had and all the energy-draining spells they'd used in the last twelve hours while the others set to work on getting a fire going. Gwen and Isolde made a fire pit and enjoyed a pleasant conversation while Arthur and Tristan gathered wood.
"You know, I was wrong about you," said Tristan.
"What?" asked Arthur, as he picked up another stick.
"You're not like the nobility I've met and you're not what I thought you were," said Tristan. "
"What's made you change your tune?" asked Arthur, taken aback by Tristan's change of attitude.
"Seeing what you've done and hearing what your sister-in-law has to say about you, that's what," said Tristan. "I have never heard of a man who's done what you have for your family and kingdom. You're a King, but you're a semi-decent one and that's a rare thing these days."
Arthur smiled a little. "Thank you, but honestly, Tristan, there are times when I have trouble believing I'm fit to be King. Whatever the destinies say, deep down, I'm just like everyone else. I'm not all that special."
Though Arthur believed in his destiny that he'd so often been told of, truth of the matter was that sometimes Arthur doubted himself severely and the events of late had not helped matters much.
"I think your wife and brother-in-law would disagree with you on that," said Tristan.
Arthur didn't reply as they continued working.
Later that same night, Merlin and Mira-Liana felt much more rested and they snuck out of camp. They'd overheard Arthur's conversation with Tristan and decided to seek the help of their wise old friend.
Within moments, Kilgarrha, Saefir, and Aithusa flew into the clearing and landed beside them. Saefir and Aithusa made little dragon noises as they immediately scurried over to Merlin and Mira-Liana and then nuzzled them with great affection.
"It's good to see you all," said Mira-Liana, smiling. She was amazed at how much the two hatchlings grown over the past few months. "We can't thank you enough for helping us as you did. You saved our lives."
"It was the least we could do, young Dragonlady. We are friends and kin, after all," said Kilgarrah. He was practically smiling. "But we have more pressing matters to attend to. The land of Albion and the future we have all fought for is in peril."
"We know," said Merlin, sighing. "We overheard Arthur talking to Tristan, one of the smugglers we're traveling with, and we found out that Arthur doubts himself—both in his skills and his right to be King. Gaheris's betrayal hit him kind of hard."
"That is not good. If Arthur doubts himself, then the battle for Albion will be lost before it is even fought," said Kilgarrah, gravely. "The two of you alone can restore the King's faith in himself."
"But that's just it," said Mira-Liana, a little frustrated. "We don't know how to. Arthur's as stubborn as we are and it takes a great deal to convince him of things on matters like this."
"The answer is not so difficult as you may think," said Kilgarrah, gently. "You must make him believe that he can be King in a way that not even he can question. And I believe that the answer lies within a certain item my father forged long ago."
This gave the twins an ingenious idea. They now had the perfect plan to rid Arthur of any doubts in himself that he had forever.
"Kilgarrah, you're as clever as your father was," said Merlin, smiling. "You just reminded us about something we forgot. Thanks. We know what to do now. But we need you to do us a favor."
"Name it," said Kilgarrah.
"The people of Camelot, the ones who escaped during Agravain's siege, do you know of where they're hiding?" asked Mira-Liana.
"We are dragons. We can cover many leagues in the blink of an eye," said Kilgarrah, as Aithusa and Saefir nodded. "They shouldn't be too hard to find."
The twins grinned.
"Then we've no time to lose," said Merlin.
The following morning, with their plans set into motion, Merlin and Mira-Liana set about in waking Arthur from his slumber. Mira-Liana shook his shoulder.
"Arthur, wake up," she said.
Arthur yawned as he slowly sat up. "What's going on?"
"Come with us. There's something we need to show you," said Merlin.
With a sigh, Arthur got up and followed his wife and brother-in-law, far away from the camp.
"What's all this about?" he asked.
"Well, we were thinking last night after hearing what you said to Tristan, and then we remembered something that Gaius told us after we hid Excalibur after we stopped Agravain last year," said Mira-Liana.
Arthur frowned in confusion. "How can that be? I thought you just said that Excalibur was the blacksmith's finest work and it was forged in dragon's breath and that was meant for me alone to wield."
"We did, but there was more to it than we first thought," said Merlin, smiling. "Just hear us out, all right? Many years ago, before the time of the Five Kingdoms, this land was an endless cycle of war and bloodshed. But one man was determined to end all that. He gathered together the elders of each tribe and made plans for the lands to be divided. Each one would respect the other's boundaries and rule over the land as they saw fit. That man was Camelot's first King, and ancestor to all that followed, including you."
Arthur sighed again. "Not that I don't enjoy hearing this, but seriously, you two, everyone in Camelot knows the story of King Bruta." It was a very well-known story back home.
"But not everyone knows what those of magic have never forgotten about the story," said Mira-Liana. "When Bruta was on his deathbed, he made a prophecy. He foretold the time when there would be a powerful sword forged in dragon's breath, hidden by a powerful witch and warlock so that it wouldn't fall into the wrong hands. It was to be a test in case his lineage was ever questioned. The sword would rest inside a great stone and only the true King of Camelot would be able to pull the sword free."
They all stopped in their tracks as Arthur stared at them.
"Please tell me you're not making this up just to make me feel better," said Arthur.
They shook their heads. They were telling the honest to heaven truth. Gaius had found out and told them about the legend not long after they'd hidden the magical blade. They had not revealed this information to anyone before as it hadn't been time for Excalibur to be removed from its hiding place and it had drifted to the back of their minds over time.
"Look over there, Arthur," said Merlin, pointing to an area in the forest.
Arthur looked and his eyes widened upon seeing Excalibur for the first time in so long. It looked just as brilliant as it had the day he'd first seen it. It rested in the stone, waiting for its true owner.
Just then, all of Camelot's citizens who had escaped Agravain's attack, along with several of Camelot's Knights (including Lancelot, Leon and Percival, who'd been helping the refugees) and even many Druids appeared out of nowhere and gathered to watch this historical event.
"Why're all these people here?" whispered Arthur.
"The same reason Merlin and I are and have always been here," said Mira-Liana, as she squeezed his shoulder. "We're here for you. You are destined to be Camelot's greatest ruler. You are the Once and Future King. Everyone here has faith in you, my love. You need only to have faith in yourself."
"These people know the legend of Excalibur. By removing the blade from its prison, you can prove that you're meant to be their leader and Albion's greatest King," said Merlin. "You are more special than you realize, Arthur. You need to see that for yourself. Only the Once and Future King can draw the blade from the stone when Camelot needs it most and he will be the one to unite the land of Albion and be the greatest King this world has ever known. That time is now and that person is you."
Tears came to Arthur's eyes. "Thank you," he murmured. "Thank you both so much. This all means a great deal to me. More than you know."
They smiled at him.
"Go. Do what you must," said Mira-Liana. "But remember, you must have faith in yourself, my love."
Arthur nodded and then approached Excalibur after plunging his spare sword into the ground beside him. He decided then and there that if all these people could have so much faith in him as much as he had faith in his loved ones and people, then perhaps he could have such faith in himself at last.
He took a deep breath and then grabbed Excalibur's black and gold hilt. After the briefest of moments, the blade moved swiftly as easily from the stone as though by magic.
It was then that Arthur felt an enormous surge of power emitting from the blade. It fit his hands perfectly and moved easily. There was nothing he could not do with it and it felt so right to have it. It was, without a doubt, the most magnificent blade he'd ever wielded in his life. There were no words to describe how he felt at that moment as he proved his right to rule to his people and to himself as he held Excalibur in his hands.
"LONG LIVE THE KING!" cried Leon. "LONG LIVE THE QUEEN!"
"Long live the King! Long live the Queen! Long live the King! Long live the Queen!" chanted the crowd, as enormous smiles crossed their faces.
Meanwhile, Agravain was on the verge of having a panic attack when Helios reported to him of what had happened in their failed attempt to destroy Arthur and the twins in Elador.
He was walking down one of the many palace halls with Helios in a fit of panic, mentally berating himself for worrying far too little and underestimating his enemies yet again.
"Our attack failed and failed miserably, I regret to say. The men were caught off-guard," said Helios. "The only survivor reported an extremely dangerous storm that came out of nowhere in Elador. It concentrated only on our group. Neither the villagers nor the village itself were hurt. He couldn't see who was performing the magic as it was far too dark to see that clearly."
"Then it was caused by magic. Merlin and Mira-Liana must've done it, but their magic is weak. There is no possible way they could've performed such magic alone. They must've had help," said Agravain. "What about the tunnels? What happened there?"
"It was the work of dragons," said Helios. "That same survivor reported seeing not one, but three dragons. They were young ones, but powerful nevertheless. They attacked only our men. Our men had all been slaughtered, everyone except for that one scout and when he was recovered, the ground was still on fire."
"Dragons?" said Agravain, both shocked and horrified. "Three of them? You're certain?"
"My scout never lies, my lord," said Helios, seriously.
Agravain paled. "And what of Gaheris?" he asked. "What's befallen him?"
"We scoured the tunnels for hours eventually found him and six others all dead," said Helios, gravely.
Agravain looked both frightened and confused.
"How can this possibly be? The only ones capable of commanding dragons are Dragonlords and Dragonladies. Balinor was the last of his kind and he died a long time ago!" said Agravain. "And how is that these dragons are alive when it was reported that Arthur slew the last one years ago?"
"Most likely these dragons were in hiding and at this point, I have no doubt whatsoever, that Balinor was not the last of his kind as everyone believed," said Helios.
Agravain stopped in his tracks. "What do you mean?"
"You've been warning me about those two practitioners who're meant to be your doom. What if Emrys and Emrysa are Balinor's kin as well as a sorcerer and sorceress? What if they were the ones who helped conjure that storm? What if they were there at the tunnels and summoned the dragons?" asked Helios.
Agravain paled even more. "If that's so, then they are more dangerous than I thought. Double our guard, be prepared for an attack both by magic and by warriors," he said. "If Emrys and Emrysa are still helping Arthur and if they are truly kin to Balinor, then heaven help us all if they catch us unaware or set the dragons upon us."
Helios bowed. "Yes, my lord."
Agravain then stood alone by the one of the windows.
I will not fail you, Mother, he swore. I will not let your death to rid the world of those three be in vain. Whatever power they have, whatever forces they may have acquired, I will crush them all, I promise you.
One way or another, there was going to be a battle that would decide the fate of them all.
With their new forces and everyone's faith and hope much restored, they began making their plans to reclaim Camelot from Agravain. One way or another, they were going to stop him and Helios and take back what was rightfully theirs.
Arthur walked with his Knights alongside Merlin and Mira-Liana in their camp, which was busy with preparation for the coming attack, as they spoke of their battle tactics, trying to decide what exactly to do when they got to Camelot.
"What about the drawbridge?" asked Arthur.
"Well-manned, as are the Northern gates," said Leon.
"And the battlements on the south side?" asked Arthur.
"Arthur, even with the magical aid we have and if we do actually get inside, Agravain and Helios still have their army," said Percival.
"How many do we have?" asked Arthur.
"Including the Druids, a few hundred," said Lancelot. "Our enemies still outnumber us three to one, but we've gotten by on less, if you recall."
"I do, indeed," said Arthur. He faced Leon and Percival, who looked concerned. "Look, I know the odds aren't exactly in our favor, but we do have an advantage. Agravain and Helios don't know of the forces we have, nor do they know that we possess a sword that can slay anything or that Balinor's son and daughter among us."
This made them all smile.
"And do you think they'll fight?" asked Isolde, appearing from behind them.
"Everyone here will fight for Arthur and Mira-Liana," said Leon. "They're our King and Queen and it is to them that we pledge our absolute loyalty to."
"And to Merlin," added Percival, as he patted him on the shoulder. "Camelot wouldn't be quite what it is without everyone's favorite warlock and advisor."
"It's not us they have to fight for," said Mira-Liana, gently as she blushed ever so slightly. "It's for Camelot."
The Knights shook their heads.
"No, old friends, it is you that the people love," said Lancelot. "And it is you that they will lay down their lives for. We would all ride into the mouth of perdition for you."
Arthur, Merlin and Mira-Liana smiled as the rest of the Knights nodded in agreement.
"Then into the mouth of perdition we shall ride," said Arthur.
That night, Merlin and Mira-Liana snuck away from camp yet again after enchanting Arthur to sleep soundly and not wake up, lest he'd notice they were missing and do something drastic. Though they knew they had many plans set for the attack come the morning, they also knew that they had to stop Agravain's magic as he was no novice when it came to magic. And they knew just how to do it.
Together they snuck back to Camelot and after using the ageing spell again, making themselves eighty years old once more, they snuck into the castle via one of the underground tunnel entrances.
They walked along one of the halls just as Agravain's voice wafted to them.
"…emissaries to any of the lands that those three could've reached by now. I want a price on their heads so large that every bounty hunter within a thousand leagues will go after them," he said, to one of his guards.
Smirking, Merlin and Mira-Liana let out a cackle as they swept past, allowing Agravain to see them and catch him off guard.
"Oh, good heavens, it's them! It's Emrys and Emrysa, they're here!" he cried, looking terrified.
"Guards, with me!" barked Helios, as he and his men took off.
The warning bell went off and there was a large search for Merlin and Mira-Liana, but the twins could be tricky at times and they were able to evade their pursuers. Aside from knocking out one guard when their backs were turned, they managed to get to Agravain's chambers with hardly any trouble whatsoever.
Once inside, they quickly made up a little doll made of straw and in their joined hands, set it afire before concealing it under Agravain's bed. The enchanted doll would bind Agravain's powers, which gave their side an advantage.
As soon as that task was completed, they concealed themselves under the disguise of the palace guards and placed special items on the cell doors that would cause them to break open when the attack occurred the next day.
Quite satisfied with their work, Merlin and Mira-Liana then left the castle and went back to the camp.
They left Agravain in a state of panic, as he was unaware of their motives for coming to the castle, where they were or what on earth they had just done. Helios could not calm him down, despite his best efforts to do so.
"We've searched everywhere, Agravain," he said as the two of them talked in Agravain's chambers. "Those two have fled and there's no sign that they've done anything whatsoever, other than enter the castle. They cowered and trembled at the sight of you!"
"Are you really such a fool? They cackled at me, Helios!" growled Agravain. "They're anything but afraid of me! They're planning something, I just know it! There's too many questions that have gone unanswered here! Why were they here? How did they get past our defenses? Why are they taunting me like this!"
Helios tried again to sooth him. "Calm yourself, my lord. We must hold our nerve. If we panic like this, then we will lose the battle before it starts. You should get some sleep. I have this wonderful herbal tea from my homeland that'll relax your nerves. I can have it made and sent up to your chambers for you if you'd like."
Agravain took a deep, shuddering breath as he tried to calm down, knowing that Helios was completely right. He needed to stay calm and focused so that he could think with a clear head and smite his enemies.
"You're right, of course," he said, as he breathed deeply several times over to calm himself down. "The tea would be most appreciated, thank you. Have it made and sent to me immediately, please. And make sure there are guards on the door."
"As you wish, my lord," said Helios, as he left the room.
Before long the tea arrived and it did exactly as Helios had promised. Feeling much more calm and relaxed, Agravain climbed into his bed and soon fell asleep, unaware of the enchanted, slightly burnt, doll that lay tied under his bed and was slowly binding his powers.
At first light, the next morning, Merlin and Mira-Liana were aroused from their brief slumber by Arthur, who looked both concerned and a little irritated.
"Do I even want to know why it looks as if neither of you has barely slept at all during the night?" asked Arthur. "I know you took watch, but for heaven's sake, this is a bit much. Do I want to know what happened?"
"Probably not," said Merlin.
Arthur sighed in exasperation. "Just tell me anyway. What did you two get up to, this time?"
"Only what we had to," said Mira-Liana, as she and Merlin stood up. "We snuck back to the castle as our old selves, scared Agravain half to death, enchanted and hid a doll that'll bind his powers for the time being, and prepared a special little something in the cells for the attack."
Knowing he might not take too kindly to finding out he was enchanted during the night, they left that part out. He didn't need to know.
Arthur's eyes widened as he sighed in exasperation yet again. "I don't know if I should be impressed with your both or scold you good for doing what you did. That was brilliant and helpful, but incredibly reckless and risky. Next time, tell me when you go off like that. With the way you make me worry about you, I think I'm going to have a heart attack and die before I'm thirty."
This made Merlin and Mira-Liana laugh.
"Don't worry, we won't go off without you knowing again. We promise," said Merlin.
"Now you just gave me reason to worry," said Arthur, throwing up his hands in mock-anger. "You just told me not. Now something's going to happen."
Mira-Liana laughed again as she kissed his cheek. "Relax. Everything's going to be all right."
He smiled and then kissed her soundly. "Whatever happens, know that I love you, Ana."
"I love you too," she said.
"And Merlin," said Arthur, looking up at his brother-in-law and best friend. "You're the best friend and brother I could ask for."
Merlin smiled. "Same to you, Arthur."
There was the sound of someone clearing their throat. They turned to see Tristan standing before them with his beloved Isolde. He looked nervous, something they found somewhat surprising, given what they knew of him.
"I apologize if we're interrupting, but can we talk for a moment?" he asked.
"Certainly," said Arthur. "What is it you want to talk about?"
To be quite honest, they had all half-expected the smugglers to be on the way by now, even knowing of Arthur's promise to them to restore their lost cargo. To find them still lingering among them in their camp was quite intriguing for them all.
Tristan sighed. "Arthur, all my life, I've shied away from other people's wars and despise the wealth and power that nobility buys with the lives of men. You and your family have shown yourselves to be different. You're not a semi-decent King. You're the finest I've ever seen and darned lucky to have such a wise and devoted family beside you."
"You've shown us that there is nothing more important than loyalty, love, friendship and family, and that you fight for what is right and fair," said Isolde. She shared a smile with her lover before facing them again. "For those reasons, we would like to fight at your sides."
The three of them smiled.
"Thank you," said Arthur, smiling. "We would be honored to have you at our sides. We stand together as equals."
Tristan and Isolde smiled.
Half an hour later, everyone was armed and prepared for what lay ahead of them. Arthur led the way as he wielded the mighty Excalibur. They split up in order to cover more territory.
Leon and a group of fellow Knights and some Druids snuck alongside one of the walls, and quickly fired crossbow bolts at the guards on the castle wall, keeping them from being spotted. Once the path was clear, they made their way onwards.
Percival was sent off with Tristan and Isolde and they dealt with the guards in their path quicker than you could snap your fingers with their skills and Percival's giant strength.
Arthur, Mira-Liana, Merlin and Gwen were in another group and they quickly slew their enemies before continuing onwards into the castle.
Each of the groups snuck into the castle, using whatever way they possibly could. Before long, the warning bell went off, but that didn't deter their efforts. There was many a great battle cry from the fighters as they fought in the ensuring battle.
Helios immediately went to alert Agravain, who'd just woken up from his sleep after having yet another nightmare. The nightmare had given him quite the scare and the warning bell wasn't helping matters as it possibly meant his fears were coming to pass at last.
"It seems we have company," said Helios.
"Emrys and Emrysa?" he asked, looking panicked.
Helios shook his head. "No. Arthur and those twins."
Agravain relaxed a little. "Then we must welcome my uncle and his family, shouldn't we? It would be terribly rude not to give our guests a proper welcome home, would it not?"
Helios nodded and then beckoned to the door. "Shall we?""
Agravain nodded as he and Helios left his chambers, still unaware of the magical booby-traps that were in place.
"Tell me of all that is happening, Helios," said Agravain.
"It is as we expected, my lord," said Helios, as they took their places in the throne room. "They are making their way here. They should be with us soon."
Agravain felt very smug as he smirked. "Then we'll be waiting."
He had a great deal planned for his enemies' fates.
"I think I'm going to enjoy this," he said, to himself.
Meanwhile, Camelot's forces were fighting as though they were invincible and they were defeating Helios's forces in many, many ways.
Tristan and Isolde performed amazing tag-team moves, swiftly and skillfully defeating any foe that came their way. Leon, Lancelot and their group fought off the other men outside and they did so with great skill and power.
Percival, several of the Knights and Druids led an breakout in the dungeons. They destroyed the guards and eventually came upon the cells.
"It is good to see you," said Gwaine, grinning.
"I knew you'd come, I knew it!" said Mordred, smiling.
"Do you have the keys to free us?" asked Alator.
"No, we have something better," said Percival. "Merlin and Mira-Liana prepared something for the escape. You'd best stand back."
Jenrad, the Druid leader, had been informed of what the twins had done. He said, "Alohomora," and snapped his fingers, as per Merlin and Mira-Liana's instructions, and then suddenly, a series of miniature explosions went off on every cell door and then the prisoners were freed as the doors either were reduced to cinders or fell to the floor, stunning them all.
Percival and the Knights of the Round Table quickly got over their astonishment at seeing such magic, and then they all shared a relieved embrace. All of the prisoners were okay, even Gaius was, and they were more than ready to fight.
"Is there no limit as to what those two can do with their magic?" asked Elyan, as they were given weapons of their own for the battle.
"There is very little, to be quite honest, Sir Elyan. Though, I fear that I must admit, their spells were tad dramatic, but it was impressive magic nonetheless," said Frik, smiling as they were unshackled and free to use their powers once more.
"We fight for Camelot!" cried Morgana, plunging her hand into the air.
"FOR CAMELOT!" yelled the prisoners.
And with that, all the Knights of Camelot and the entire Council of Magic joined in the fight, which grew more into their favor with the newly added forces of magic and warriors.
Meanwhile, Arthur, Merlin, Gwen, and Mira-Liana caught up with Tristan and Isolde and they had made their way through the castle. They were now at the entrance of the throne room where they faced six guards.
"Six, one for each of us," said Arthur. "Take your pick. ON ME!"
And with that, they fought yet again.
Arthur slew the first man with Excalibur instantly. Gwen destroyed the second one with her blade. Tristan and Isolde dealt with the third and fourth. And then Merlin and Mira-Liana magically blasted the fifth and sixth guard with relative ease.
Once the guard were dealt with, Arthur nodded at them. "Ready?"
"As always," said Mira-Liana.
"Now!" said Arthur.
They broke down the door, using both human force and magic and burst into the throne room as they cried, "For the love of Camelot!" Agravain and Helios were waiting inside, looking very calm and confident and not the least bit concerned at all.
"Welcome, dear Uncle Arthur, and of course Merlin and Mira-Liana," said Agravain, smiling evilly. "It's been far too long." He rose up from the throne in which he sat on and walked towards the little group. "I apologize if you had a difficult reception, but it's hard to know who to trust these days."
Arthur approached him after sheathing Excalibur. "You've lost. As we speak, your prisoners have been freed and they're fighting with everything they have. Your armies are been vanquished."
Agravain paled a little, but said nothing.
"I'm sorry. Things didn't have to be this way, Agravain. If you hadn't been so quick to let your bitterness and anger towards my father consume you, you could've been our friend and ally. You could've been part of something greater than yourself. You could've been part of a family!" said Arthur.
Perhaps if things had been different, Agravain could've been one of them, but he had chosen to walk down a path none of them would follow.
"Perhaps, but we think we both know that's a lie, Uncle," said Agravain. "We chose our paths. I followed my mother, and you followed your father."
"I have not done what he did to those with magic and you cannot blame me for his sins," said Arthur.
"It's too late for that," said Agravain, angrily. "A son always follows in his father's footsteps. Sooner or later, you would've betrayed me and my kind, just like your wretched father did!"
Arthur sighed and shook his head. "I would never do that. And do you want to know something about Uther? When he was your prisoner, he had a vision. He saw everything that Merlin and Mira-Liana have done for this kingdom with their powers. He saw everything and even though he knew the truth, he protected my family. And when he was dying, he apologized and asked for forgiveness for what he'd done."
Agravain's face was expressionless. "That doesn't excuse the things he did to me and my kind, and nor do I believe you'll be anything but like him. You have more in common with Uther than you realize."
"As do you," snapped Arthur.
Agravain looked furious. "I'm going to enjoy killing you, Arthur Pendragon. Not even Emrys, Emrysa or your pesky wife and brother-in-law can save you now."
Everyone drew their weapons and went into a fighting stance as Agravain stepped back and then recited a spell. But nothing happened. Agravain tried again, only to obtain the same results.
"Not so powerful now, are you now, Agravain?" said Mira-Liana.
Agravain glared at them. "What have you done?" he screeched at them. "What did you two and Emrys and Emrysa do to me?"
"Not even you are immune to the effects of a magic-binding spell," said Merlin, smugly. "You're powerless."
Agravain looked horrified as he fled from the room.
"After him!" yelled Arthur.
Merlin, Gwen and Mira-Liana chased after Agravain while Arthur, Tristan and Isolde fought Helios and his remaining men in the room.
Gwen was the one who caught up with Agravain first as she briefly separated from the twins. She found him, wielding a small sword and clutching at wound at his side.
Agravain looked smug yet again. "Ah, the famous Guinevere. Alone without any sort of magical protection. You'll be easy prey for me."
"I don't need magic to be able to fight a gutless coward like yourself, Agravain," said Gwen, as she began fighting him. "This is for my family!"
They fought hard until Agravain managed to disarm her and was about to end it when suddenly…
"GET AWAY FROM MY WIFE!"
Agravain was suddenly blasted away by a very angry Merlin and Mira-Liana, who caused part of the ceiling to collapse onto him as he was rendered unconscious.
Merlin wrapped his arms around Gwen as Mira-Liana inspected the rubble.
"Are you all right?" he asked.
Gwen nodded. "I'm fine."
"Agravain's gone," announced Mira-Liana, as she rose up. There was no sign of him whatsoever in the rubble. He had slipped away from them yet again.
"We'll deal with him later," said Merlin, firmly.
He was right. Agravain could wait until he was found again. Right now, they had other matters to attend to. The battle was won and Camelot was theirs once again.
In the weeks that followed their reclaim of Camelot, things fell into place.
With the help of the Council of Magic, the damage Agravain had done to the kingdom was undone, Agravain's prisoners all made a full recovery from their time spent in the dungeons, Hunith returned to Camelot with the children, much to the relief and joy of their parents, Arthur was enjoying have Excalibur at his side and vowed to only use its power for the good of the kingdom, and the people of Camelot were extremely happy to have their true King and Queen returned to them.
Things were peaceful and joyful in the kingdom once again.
Late one afternoon as the sun was setting, Mira-Liana stood on the balcony of the castle, gazing upon her kingdom. She took a deep breath and exhaled slowly, just enjoying the moment.
Suddenly, she felt certain arms being wrapped around her. She smiled when she saw Arthur and then they shared a kiss.
"I was wondering where you'd gone off to," said Arthur, smiling. "What're you doing?"
"Just watching the sunset and enjoying the peace for a moment," said Mira-Liana. "It's so beautiful, don't you think?"
"Yes, you are," said Arthur, making her giggle. "But yes, you're right. It's wonderful right now. Agravain's gone for now, our family's safe and all's well for now."
"As well it should be," said Merlin, coming up from behind them. "Hi. I thought you'd like to know that Tristan and Isolde have decided to retire from the smuggling business. They're going to settle down here in Camelot. And I've given them jobs that I think they'll find quite satisfactory."
"Excellent," said Mira-Liana, happy for her friends. She smiled. "You know, Igraine was right. The future will be when it's meant to and whatever happens, we'll stand together, united as one."
"Always and forever," said Arthur, in agreement.
"Until the end of time," said Merlin, grinning.
It didn't matter what came their way or what forces they fought in the future. One way or another, things would work out the way there were meant and Camelot would become the greatest kingdom on earth with its favorite trio to lead it. They would stand together as a family forever.