Random little idea that popped into my head. Only rated T cuz of some not so nice names at the beginning. Can be just friendship or pre-slash, depending on what you like.

Hope you like it. :)

"God, what a loser."

"He's always alone."

"How did he get in this school? I wouldn't let my dog lay on fabric that ratty, and he wears it for clothes."

Arthur chuckled at that one. "Maybe he murdered a student and took their place."

"And what is with that scarf?" asked Valiant. "He might as well tattoo 'fag' across his forehead."

The jocks at the table burst out laughing, drawing the attention of the surrounding students in the campus café, including that of the raven haired boy sitting alone at a corner table. He glanced up at the table with the star football players, eyes wary as he found them all staring at him. He blushed as Cenred waved at him, quickly packing his bag as the team roared with laughter again.

As he stood and rushed from the café, Tristan called after him. "Freak!"

As the others laughed and high-fived each other, Arthur stared after the fleeing boy, not missing his flinch at the shouted insult.


Arthur walked lazily across the grounds, enjoying the beautiful weather of late afternoon. He smiled at and chatted with fellow students. He strolled across the large stretch of grass, pausing as he noticed a figure sitting against a tree.

He slowly approached the dark haired boy, taking in his dirty jeans and threadbare blue t-shirt. The ever-present red scarf wrapped perfectly around his neck was the only thing not tattered and torn.

The boy glanced up as Arthur drew nearer, staring at Arthur curiously.

Arthur swallowed, suddenly wondering what he was doing. "Hey," he said as he stopped beside him.

The boy smiled at him, giving a slight wave.

"What are you doing?" asked Arthur, internally groaning at how lame he sounded.

Picking the sketchbook up off his lap, the boy turned it to Arthur, showing a beautiful drawing of the surrounding scenery.

"Wow," said Arthur, kneeling to get a closer look. "That's amazing."

The boy blushed lightly, bowing his head slightly.

Arthur eyed him. "You're awfully quiet. Really shy?"

He shook his head as he picked up a small notebook next to him, scribbling a quick word and holding it up.


Arthur blinked in surprise. "Oh. Sorry."

The boy smiled again, writing. No problem.

"I'm Arthur," he said, holding out his hand.

The boy wrote, holding it up as he shook Arthur's hand. Merlin.

"Nice to meet you, Merlin."

Merlin nodded, pointing at Arthur.

The blond leaned back against the tree, stretching his legs out in front of him. "If you don't mind me asking, were you born mute or did something happen."

Merlin perched the notebook on his knee, writing quickly. Car accident. When I was little. Broke my leg in three places, broke my hip, punctured a lung, and my vocal chords were damaged. He pulled the scarf away from his neck, old, deep scars marring the ivory flesh.

Arthur stared at him, eyes wide. "I'm sorry. Was anyone else injured?"

Merlin's eyes went sad. My dad died.

"Oh, I…" Arthur tailed off, unsure what to say.

They sat in silence for a while, Merlin returning to his drawing. Arthur watched him sketch a group of students lounging on the lawn, nervously knotting his fingers.

"My, uh," Arthur cleared his throat. Merlin glanced up at him. "My mom… was in a car accident. When she was pregnant with me. They… they had to do an emergency C-section, even though I was four weeks early. But, they… couldn't save her." He stared down at his hands, fingers turning red from the pressure of twisting together.

He looked up when he felt a soft hand on his arm.

'Sorry,' mouthed Merlin. He gave Arthur's arm a slight squeeze.

Arthur gave a small smile. Merlin didn't remove his hand and Arthur was surprised he didn't mind. He like how soft and cool it felt on his warm skin. Arthur stared up at him, startled when he realized how brightly blue Merlin's eyes were. "Look… About the other day, at the café… I'm sorry for…" He trailed off as, without taking his other hand off Arthur's arm, Merlin wrote.

For saying I should just tattoo 'fag' across my forehead?

Arthur winced. "Oh, you heard that…Well, I… Technically, I didn't say that but…"

I know. It's okay. It hurt, but, truth always hurts, doesn't it?

"I don't think it always shou- Wait, truth?"

Merlin smiled. Please, you couldn't tell I was gay?

Arthur sputtered. "Yes. I mean, no! Well, uh…"

Merlin's shoulders shook with a silent laugh. Don't worry about it. He patted Arthur's arm.

Arthur stared around, frantically searching for a subject change. And trying to stop his suddenly rushing heart. "So… do you always write to talk?"

He shook his head. No. But I figured you don't Sign.

Arthur gave a sheepish laugh. "No, I guess I don't."

Merlin smiled at him.

Arthur smiled back. "Maybe you could teach me?"

Merlin's brow furrowed as if he was thinking hard. I don't know, it's pretty difficult to learn. You have to be real smart.

Arthur gasped, face mock-hurt. "Are you implying I'm an idiot?"

Merlin's grin was infectious. Guess we'll find out.

"You hungry?" asked Arthur suddenly.

Tilting his head, Merlin eyed him curiously before nodding.

"You like Chinese?"

Who doesn't?

Arthur smiled. "How do you sign 'would you like to go to dinner'?" He chuckled as Merlin's pale hand moved through the air. "Ah… I think I'll stick with this for now. Would you like to go to dinner?"

Merlin silent laughed again, signing as he mouthed, 'Yes.'

I had so much fun with mute!Merlin in How to Save a Live, that I just couldn't resist.

P.S. To anyone reading How to Save a Life, I promise I have NOT abandoned it. I have just lost inspiration. I am working on it, it is just taking a lot longer to figure out what to write. I'm sorry for the wait, and I hope I can get it posted soon, if anyone still wants to read it. :/