A/N: OK...so the story behind this one went something like this:

Me with my laptop: Give me a word.

My sister: (thinks for a minute) Piddly.

Me: Piddly.

Sister: (nods)

Me: Give me a good word.

Sister: Hey, you wouldn't want me to make it too easy. I thought that was the point.

Me: ...fine. Fandom?

Sister: Something that has dragons it it...(considers)...Merlin.

Me: Merlin and 'Piddly', Hoo Boy.

Hence, this drabble was born.


Disclaimer: Merlin belongs to BBC. If I owned it, there would be more magic fights.


Arthur Pendragon, King of Camelot and all Albion, wielder of the enchanted blade Excaliber, gave a contented sigh as he strode down the corridor from his council chambers.

The realm was peaceful, the people thrived, and there hadn't been a single explosion from Merlin's tower all morning. Life was good.

It had been almost twenty years now since he had ascended the throne...years filled with adventure and triumph and sorrow. Arthur had been knocked down and betrayed only to rise up, find love, and be stronger for the experience. Now Guinevere was his queen, her beauty and grace never failing to steal his breath even after long marriage. He had his loyal knights...and he had his best friend who he both loved and wanted to strangle on a daily basis. Arthur's eyes crinkled as he stopped to gaze out at Merlin's tower, silhouetted against the morning sun.

Twenty long years.

Twenty good years.

The King was jostled out of his reflective thoughts when he caught movement down in the courtyard. Peering closer, Arthur saw what looked like a boy running towards the citadel. Normal in and of itself...but normal messenger boys did not have expressions of pure terror, nor did they wear nothing but a pair of grown man's trousers. The boy shuffled awkwardly towards the entrance, his scrawny arms holding the trousers almost up to his chin in order to keep them from dragging on the ground.

Focused on the unusual sight, The King caught more movement out the corner of his eye and turned to look.

Somehow, Arthur was not surprised to find his Court Magician chasing the boy, his face a mix of chagrined guilt.

"Percival." Merlin called.

The boy ran faster.

"I'm sorry Percival." Merlin pleaded. "Please come back. I'll fix it. I promise. I just added a little too much burdock root...and pronounced one of the syllables wrong, but I know how to undo it! Please...if you'd just give me a moment..."

The voice trailed off as the two entered the citadel.

Arthur stared at the door for a full minute before turning around and determinedly heading for his apartments. Gwen had planned a pleasant brunch for the two of them and he'd be damned if he'd let a bumbling warlock's experiment gone wrong ruin his good mood.

If Merlin hadn't managed to sort Percival out by supper he'd start to worry.


A/N: I know, it's short. It was actually written, edited and posted all within 3/4 of an hour. Still, let me know what you think.