A/N: Hello everyone! This story is kind of tied to my Doctor Who and Buffy crossover called Hellmouth or Time Rift. The Doctor makes a casual mention of meeting Merlin in that story. I decided to actually write the encounter that the Doctor was talking about, but I decided to do it as a one shot Doctor Who and Merlin crossover. So this is how I think it would go if the Doctor met Merlin and Arthur.
Rose Tyler stepped out of the TARDIS and looked around at the forest in front of her. There wasn't too much to look at. This seemed just like any other forest. For all she knew they could be on Earth or a planet on the other side of the galaxy. This is why she loved traveling with the Doctor. Everyday turned out to be a surprise and even the most unassuming place could hold adventure and danger.
Rose turned around when she heard the Doctor step out of the TARDIS behind her. She gave him a small smile before turning back to observe the forest in front of them. "So where are we?"
"Well," began the Doctor as he observed their surroundings. "We are definitely on Earth and long before you were ever born. Maybe you should go back in the TARDIS and change into some Renaissance clothing. We don't want a repeat of what happened with Queen Victoria."
"I suppose you're right," said Rose before turning back and stepping into the TARDIS to begin the search for the ever moving wardrobe. She definitely didn't want a repeat of what happened with Queen Victoria. She had been dressed pretty modestly, but everyone still acted as if she was running around Scotland completely naked. She didn't mind dressing up for their adventures, but she just wanted to get going and find out when and where they had ended up. Rose ended up choosing a fancy purple dress made of crushed velvet with long bell sleeves. She decided on some sensible and comfortable boots that were thankfully covered by the dress. Rose finally added some kind of hair net with pearls on it and threw up her hair. Before exiting the wardrobe, Rose grabbed some more clothing and shoved it into a bag in case they ended up staying for longer than a day. It wasn't often that she got to dress up this fancy.
"You look lovely," said the Doctor when Rose stepped back out of the TARDIS.
"Thanks," said Rose. "Aren't you going to change?"
"Nope," said the Doctor. "I'll be fine in what I am wearing. No one will even give me a second glance after seeing you." The Doctor was in one of his two typical suits. He was currently wearing the blue pinstriped suit, red converse, and his beloved long brown coat.
Rose gave a sigh before she decided to give up on getting the Doctor to change out of his geek chic. Rose began to walk ahead of the Doctor after she picked a random direction.
"That's the spirit, Rose Tyler,' said the Doctor with a manic grin. "Allons-y!"
"I swear you are half asleep today, Merlin," said an exasperated Arthur as he chucked a pillow at Merlin's head. His manservant seemed to be even more useless than usual. Merlin wasn't talking back or trying to annoy Arthur which was having the effect of annoying Arthur. "What is with you today?"
"I'm not sure," said Merlin after a few moments. "I just feel a little odd today." Truthfully Merlin was feeling odd on this particular day. He had slept just fine and had even managed to not be too late with waking up his royal pratness and getting him his breakfast. Ever since the morning Merlin had the feeling that something was coming, but he couldn't say what. There was something calling to him in the back of his mind that was distracting him from everything else. Merlin being a warlock meant that he was more sensitive to psychic forces. He had a feeling that someone or something with extraordinary psychic powers was on its way to Camelot at this very moment. This all started when he heard a strange noise in the back of his head. This was a noise that he could not describe. It sounded like something groaning and grinding, but not quite. "Would it be alright it I was excused, Sire?"
"Whatever for?" Arthur asked getting more annoyed by the second.
"Gaius is running low on herbs and asked me to gather some for him as soon as possible," Merlin lied easily. "I was hoping I could get that done before it got too late.
"Very well," Arthur sighed. "You aren't much use to me today considering how distracted you seem. If I so much as see you go near the tavern than you will be spending the next week in the stocks. I expect you to be back here to bring me my supper at the usual time. You are dismissed."
"Thank you, Sire," said Merlin before exiting the prince's chambers. He was planning on following the direction the psychic presence was coming from. He would also gather some of the usual herbs that Gaius usually needed so that even if he didn't find anything the day wouldn't be a complete loss.
Merlin ran back to the chambers he shared with Gaius to let him know where he was going and what he was doing. Merlin grabbed some supplies and a bag for gathering herbs. It took him less than five minutes to get prepared before leaving. Once out of the castle the young warlock began sprinting through the town. In hardly anytime at all Merlin found himself outside of the city. Typically Merlin enjoyed getting out of the heart of Camelot. He didn't have to be as cautious about his magic and felt a sense of freedom he never felt inside the castle walls.
Now that Merlin was away from the busy city he could sense the psychic presence more clearly than he had before and started following the direction it was leading him. For all he knew this could be a trap and someone was trying to lure him to his death, but if there was a problem, than it would be better to take care of whatever this was before it could enter Camelot.
After ten minutes Merlin came across two people wandering through the forest. The woman seemed to be perfectly normal. She was dressed in the latest fashions and was actually wearing something he could have seen Morgana wearing. The man on the other hand was slightly frightening. He wore clothing that Merlin had never seen before and had a powerful presence. Merlin instantly knew this man was an extension of the psychic being he felt in his head earlier. When Merlin looked into this man's eyes he saw age and wisdom. Here was someone who seemed to be older than he appeared. The girl seemed perfectly fine being so close to this man. Maybe she didn't know that he was not human. Merlin was sure that such a man could not be completely human with eyes like that.
"Hello," said Merlin tentatively.
"Oh, hello," said the Doctor with a cheery wave and a smile. "I'm the Doctor and this is Rose Tyler. We didn't expect to come across anyone until we reached a city. Can you tell us who you are and where we are?"
Merlin wasn't sure whether to answer or not. If these people didn't know where they were, than Merlin wasn't sure if he wanted to tell this man with the strange eye that he was just outside of Camelot. His reaction could always let Merlin know what his purpose was. "My name is Merlin and you are just outside the heart of Camelot."
"You are kidding me," said the Doctor enthusiastically. "I was never sure if Camelot was just a legend or actually real. I always meant to go and check it out for myself, but time just seemed to get away from me. Funny how time can get away from you when you are a Time Lord. Are you really Merlin? That would be brilliant if you were the Merlin. Maybe Merlin is not such an uncommon name in this time. Is there a bloke called Arthur who rules this place?
"Arthur is the prince since his father Uther is still alive," replied Merlin.
"That is a bit different from the legends then," said the Doctor. "No matter since this is still amazing. It is an honor to meet you and I mean that from the bottom of my hearts." The Doctor pulled out his sonic screwdriver and made a move towards Merlin to scan him to see for himself if some of the legends about Merlin being magical were true.
"Wace ierlic," said Merlin as his eyes flashed gold. The Doctor went flying back and had just managed to miss hitting a tree. He instead landed roughly on the forest floor.
"What was that for?" The Doctor called out to Merlin as he stood up and brushed his coat off.
"Don't try anything else or I will be forced to hurt you," said Merlin.
"Being thrown across a forest definitely hurt," whined the Doctor.
"What are you?" Merlin asked, but continued one before waiting for an answer. "You said you were a Time Lord, whatever that is, and it sounded like you said you had more than one heart, and then you pulled out that funny object and pointed it at me."
"Sorry," began the Doctor. "Sometimes my mouth runs ahead of me. I can explain everything. I am what is called a Time Lord. I travel through space and time and Rose here is a human from your far future that is travelling with me. I saved her from some aliens and invited her to join me on my travels. You probably don't know what an alien is, do you?" After the Doctor saw Merlin shake his head the Doctor continued on. "I am also an alien. I was not born on this planet. When it is dark out you can see stars and planets in the sky. I come from out there. I am not even from this same galaxy. Humans look similar to Time Lords, but we have been around much longer, but I am the only one left now of my species. I am over nine hundred years old and probably quite a bit older than that. It is hard to keep track of your age when you get to be as old as I am. I have two hearts which is the main physiological difference between our species."
"Alright," said Merlin who even though he considered himself intelligent was still having trouble grasping the concept of just what this man was and where he came from. He would have to talk to Gaius later. "So do you control time? What does a Time Lord do?"
"Well, when Time Lords were still around they had a no interference policy unless it was completely necessary. Time Lords had the power to travel to any point in time. We watched over the Universe, but there was a war and all the Time Lords died except for me. I travel through time and space having adventures and helping where I can. Sometimes I can't do anything to help because some events must always happen, but other points are in flux and I am able to do something. That is who I am."
"I can understand how you feel," began Merlin. "That must be a very lonely existence. Hardly anyone here knows what I am. I have never come across another warlock. I was born with my magic. Most sorcerers I have come across have been out to destroy Camelot. My best friend doesn't even know what I am and I don't know if I can ever tell him."
"A time will come when Arthur knows everything about you if the legends are to be believed. Do you also go by the name Emrys and have you heard Arthur be referred to as the once and future king? The Doctor asked of the young man before them.
"I never really stop hearing that," said Merlin. "How could you know?"
"Trust me that everything will work out fine," said the Doctor. "I would like to meet this prince of yours."
"Alright, but you need to promise me you won't tell him about me," pleaded Merlin.
"I won't do anything that is not meant to happen," responded the Doctor.
"Okay and he can't know about you," said Merlin. "You are not human and Uther would have you executed immediately."
"He could try," said the Doctor. "It is not easy to kill a Time Lord. Anyways, can I see some magic before we head back?" The Doctor asked with his voice filled with excitement. "Now I am not sure if what you all are doing is actually magic. I guess there could be something in this Universe that I have missed, but there are more likely causes for magic. Words have power and can be considered another type of science. There is what appears to be magic found throughout the Universe, but never have I come across any real magic. You used words to make me go flying back and if you were tapped into a psychic network that depended on words to make things happen, than that would explain why it would appear to be 'magic'.
"I haven't always used words to make things happen," said Merlin. "I could use magic before I could walk or talk. I didn't start learning spells until I came to Camelot. Before I came here I could slow down time and move objects just on instinct."
"Do others need to use words all the time to make something happen?" The Doctor asked with apparent curiosity in his voice. He hoped he would be proven wrong. It would be fantastic if something as impossible and illogical as magic actually existed.
"Sorcerers need to use spells and have to learn magic whereas a warlock is born with magic and doesn't need to use spells for minor things. I guess you could consider me to be a creature of magic and a sorcerer to be a human who uses magic."
"Fascinating!" The Doctor exclaimed with real enthusiasm much to the relief of Merlin. Merlin was always worried how someone would react when they found out he was magical. It shouldn't have come as a surprise to Merlin that the Doctor was so accepting since he himself was not human and didn't have the same prejudices as those who were born and raised in Camelot. "So can I see a trick?" The Doctor asked once more.
"I suppose," said Merlin as he thought of a spell to use. "Forbearnan," said Merlin and after his eyes flashed gold a small fire was present in his hand which he showed to the Doctor who seemed deeply impressed if his facial expression was anything to go by.
Rose had been silent during most of this exchange, but had been impressed by the magical display. As a child of London she had grown up with stories of Merlin, King Arthur, Knights of the round table, and various other stories from Arthurian legend. She had of course enjoyed the animated movie the sword in the stone when she was a child. It was surprising to see Merlin as a young man who was actually rather handsome instead of an old man, but she supposed that everyone had to be young at some point. This was turning out to be a wonderful trip so far. She just hoped that nothing would happen to spoil her good time, but she knew that being with the Doctor meant having to deal with monsters as well. So she was prepared for anything to happen. "Can we head back to Camelot now?" Rose asked both the Doctor and Merlin. "I want to meet the different people from the legends if they are actually here and see the castle."
"Sure," said Merlin. "I don't know if I should take you to see the king or just bring you to my chambers where I live with Gaius, the court physician."
"I want to meet the King," said Rose. "The Doctor can use his psychic paper to give us a back story or any credentials we need."
"I would be careful," said Merlin. "Forging papers usually doesn't end up too well as I can tell you from experience."
"Nothing to worry about," said the Doctor. "I've had plenty of experience with this sort of thing. Off to see Camelot."
"Come on then," said Merlin. "It shouldn't take us too long to get back to the citadel.
Upon arriving at the Citadel, Merlin ran into Arthur and asked to get an audience with his father. Arthur looked skeptically at the two newcomers before going to inform their father that they had guests. A mere fifteen minutes later the Doctor and Rose had an audience with Uther.
"Who are the two of you and what brings you to Camelot?" Uther asked the two strangers in front of him. The woman was nothing out of the ordinary, but the man was wearing the most peculiar clothing.
"I am Sir Doctor of TARDIS and this is Dame Rose of the Powell Estate," said the Doctor flashing Uther his psychic paper. "We have been traveling for quite awhile and honestly did not know where we were until we arrived here in Camelot and ran into Prince Arthur's servant."
"I am not aware of the land that you are from and Doctor is a most unusual name," said Uther skeptically as he analyzed their credentials.
"We are a long way from home," said the Doctor. "I must admit that I chose the name Doctor for myself."
"I will have your papers looked at to ensure they are authentic, but in the mean time the two of you are welcome to make yourselves comfortable," said Uther as he passed the wallet over to Geoffrey to inspect.
"My manservant is at your complete disposal," said Arthur.
Rose was impressed by the room they were staying in. The room itself wasn't necessarily that spacious and it lacked the amenities she was used to, but it was a beautiful room. She felt like royalty staying in this room in a castle and wearing such fancy clothes.
Once the Doctor and Rose were settled in their room, the Doctor brought up the subject of getting Merlin to tell Arthur his secret. "I think it is time for Arthur to know and I don't know if Merlin will ever get up the courage to tell him," began the Doctor. "Innocent people die all the time here because they use magic. Plus some parts of the legends have to be true and Arthur will be accepting of Merlin. If everything doesn't work out, than I suppose I could remove the knowledge from Arthur's mind."
"Didn't you promise Merlin that we wouldn't tell Arthur?" Rose asked already worried about the man they had just met.
"I promised I wouldn't do anything that is not meant to happen, and I think this is a time where we should meddle," said the Doctor. "Not every adventure we go on has to involve aliens, although it is likely that Merlin and these other creature of magic are not originally from Earth and those using magic are tapping into a power that is not from this planet either. So in a way you could say we are dealing with an alien problem. The TARDIS takes us places for a reason and I think that reason is dealing with the problem of lack of acceptance for those who are not quite human."
"Just don't get Merlin executed," pleaded Rose.
"He is meant to do great things in his life so I don't think we need to worry about getting him executed," said the Doctor trying to reassure Rose. "It would probably be best to not let Uther know."
Merlin came by a half hour later to check on the Doctor and Rose and let them know that they were to join Uther, Morgana, and Arthur for dinner. The Doctor brought up his plan to Merlin who was not too enthusiastic.
"Here me out," said the Doctor. "Tell Arthur your secret. In the legends he knows all about you and everything works out fine. Tell him while we are here and no harm will come to you. If you can't make Arthur see reason at this point in time, than I can take the knowledge from him and you can try again another time."
"You can take memories away from people?" Merlin asked the Doctor.
"I can take or give information. I can read people's minds, remove memories, and give my own memories to people," said the Doctor. "I could even give Arthur some of my memories of how the two of you are remembered in years to come without giving away any spoilers."
"Can you read my mind at this moment?" Merlin asked not sure if he really wanted to know or not.
"I need physical contact and I need to concentrate," said the Doctor hoping he put Merlin's fears to rest that he knew everything the young man was thinking.
"Alright," said Merlin with a nod of his head. "Let's try talking to Arthur later on tonight."
"You don't have to do this if you don't want to," said Rose placing a hand on Merlin's shoulders trying to comfort him.
Supper was a relatively silent affair for most people at the table. Rose was not quite sure what she could say since she didn't know much about this time period and didn't want to make any mistakes and end up burned at the stake. Uther had invited the two strangers to be polite and wanted others to know of his great hospitality, but he didn't know what to say to these strange people. Morgana was thinking about her latest scheme to bring down Uther and Arthur and claim the throne for herself. Arthur just didn't have much to say and couldn't have gotten a word in even if he wanted to. The Doctor was doing enough talking to make up for everyone else's silence at the table. He barely stopped talking long enough to eat the meal that had been placed in front on him. All of his rambling had Uther believing that the man was slightly mad.
While the royals were eating with their guests, Merlin was eating a modest supper with Gaius. This was the first time he had today to properly talk to his mentor. He wasn't sure how to bring up what he knew about the two strangers and what the plan was for later on in the evening. It was Gaius who brought the subject up first much to the relief of the young warlock.
"What do you think of Uther's guests?" Gaius asked Merlin who seemed to be contemplating his meal. "It was you who brought them to the castle, right?"
"What?" Merlin asked not quite hearing the whole question at first. "I found them in the woods and brought them here."
"Who are they?" Gaius asked mainly because something seemed off about the man from the little he saw of the two visitors.
"Well the Doctor is apparently an alien," said Merlin trying to remember the conversation from before. "He said that he isn't from this planet and he can travel through space and time. Rose is human and from the future. She travels with the Doctor."
Gaius' eyebrow was raised so high that it almost disappeared. He had never heard such a ridiculous story in all his life. "That can't be possible," said a highly skeptical Gaius.
"That is what he told me and I believed him," said Merlin. "He had no reason to lie to me and he knew things. He knew all about me and about Arthur and he knew about my magic."
"That is very dangerous," said Gaius. "These two know your secret and now they are in the same room as Uther and Arthur. What if they tell your secret? How could you lead them here?"
"The Doctor wants to help me," demanded Merlin who was slightly upset that Gaius would question his judgment. "We plan on telling Arthur my secret tonight."
"Are you a complete idiot?" Gaius angrily asked the boy he thought of as a son.
"The Doctor said that he can pass his own memories onto Arthur to help him see what our future together holds. The Doctor also said that if Arthur cannot come to terms with me having magic, than he can remove the knowledge from Arthur," said Merlin.
"This is very risky," cautioned Gaius.
"I have to at least try," said Merlin. "This might be my only chance to tell what Arthur's reaction will be and if he accepts me right away than I never have to worry again."
"Be careful," said Gaius. "I wouldn't want to see anything happen to you or your destiny just because someone not even of this world has convinced you to tell the son of the magic hating king that you are a warlock."
"Everything will work out fine," Merlin said trying to reassure his mentor. "Either Arthur will accept me for who I am or I go back to hiding my secret and nothing will have changed. I should probably head out now. This is one thing I don't want to be late for."
"Good luck," Gaius called as Merlin started heading to the door and received a smile and wave before heading out.
Merlin luckily ran into the Doctor, Rose, and Arthur who were heading back to their respective chambers. This would save him time trying to round everyone up. He was nervous about revealing his secret to Arthur. He had never been more nervous in his life, but he trusted that the Doctor would make sure everything turned out alright.
"Can the four of us talk?" Merlin asked the group. The Doctor and Rose already knew what was coming, but Arthur had no idea why Merlin wanted the four of them to have a chat. Arthur had just left having supper with these two and couldn't see what they possibly had to talk about now.
"What is it, Merlin?" Arthur asked his manservant. Arthur just wanted to head back to his own chambers and get away from someone who he suspected to be mad.
"I just have something I need to tell you Arthur and would like the Doctor and Rose to be there as well," said Merlin who now wasn't sure if he could convince Arthur to even talk about anything in the presence of strangers.
"This better be important," said Arthur as he began leading the way back to his own chambers.
"Thank you, Sire," said Merlin.
"Just don't waste my time on something trivial," said Arthur as they reached his chamber door.
Once inside Arthur sat down at the table in the center of the room and invited everyone else to join him around the table. The Doctor and Rose immediately sat down, but it took Merlin a few moments and a couple deep breaths before he sat down as well. There was no going back now that he had everyone gathered together.
"Arthur, I have been keeping something secret from you since the moment we met," Merlin began. "I have wanted to tell you for such a long time, but I have always been too scared of your reaction to bring this up before now."
"Do the Doctor and Rose already know what you are about to tell me?" Arthur asked with a hint of indignation in his voice that two strangers knew something about his manservant that he was just now going to learn after knowing Merlin for years.
"Somehow the Doctor and Rose already knew," said Merlin.
"Maybe I should explain how we knew," said the Doctor. "Now don't be alarmed, but Rose and I are time travelers. We already knew all about Merlin and yourself because you are both well known in the future."
"What sorcery allows you to travel through time?' Arthur demanded before turning to his manservant. "How could you allow these sorcerers into the castle and then bring them into my chambers?"
"Neither Rose nor I know anything about sorcery," said the Doctor who could already see this was going to be more difficult that he originally thought. "I am a scientist and the science I use is more advanced than you could ever comprehend. I came across Rose in the future and invited her to travel with me."
"I don't believe a word that you are saying, and I am even more convinced now that you are simply mad," said an outraged Arthur.
"Arthur, please just hear them out before I tell you what I need to tell you," Merlin pleaded. "Believe that I would never put you in any danger."
Arthur did know how loyal his manservant was and this calmed him slightly. He gestured for the Doctor to continue. He would at least hear them out before calling for the guards. Arthur gestured to the Doctor that he should continue.
"Out in the forest is where my time machine is that can also travel through space," explained the Doctor. "Now don't automatically assume that this is sorcery. This is just the type of science that was developed on the planet that come from. I am what is called a Time Lord. My people when they still existed watched over all of time and the Universe. We had a policy to never interfere, but I never was one to be content with letting bad things happen. I have always been one to interfere when a problem came up that could be changed. The TARDIS, which is my ship and the name stands for Time And Relative Dimension In Space, has the habit of taking me where I am needed. For some reason I was drawn to Camelot and I now suspect that is because Rose and I were needed to help to help you realize your destiny and what you will do for this land."
"That is utter nonsense," said a slightly fearful Arthur. It was easier to believe that the man was lying instead of the alternative which meant that this man was in fact not human and not even from this planet. "What does this even have to do with Merlin?"
"Your destinies are entwined," explained the Doctor. "It will take the both of you working together to unite all of Albion and bring peace to the land."
"How could a servant help the future king unite all the kingdoms and bring peace?" Arthur asked who was now sure this was all a ridiculous lie. Merlin was the most useless and lazy servant he had ever had. He could occasionally spout something that was wise and he was always there for Arthur no matter what the circumstances, but the thought that their destinies were linked still seems impossible.
"Merlin has a secret he has been keeping from you that will explain how he can help you," said the Doctor. "I think I have said more than enough now. It is up to Merlin to tell you his secret."
"Go ahead, Merlin," commanded Arthur. "What is this big secret you have been keeping from me?"
"Arthur, please don't be mad at me for what I am about to say," began Merlin. "Just know that I have always been loyal to you and nothing could make me ever waver in my loyalty. Know that I would never hurt you and would never do anything but help you."
Arthur was now feeling worried at what his manservant was about to reveal to him. If this was anyone else, than he would automatically assume that the person was a sorcerer. No one would be stupid enough to sit the prince of Camelot down and reveal that they were a sorcerer. Arthur could think of one person stupid enough and that person was currently sitting across the table from him.
Merlin could almost see Arthur working out his secret in his head. He continued on before Arthur could fully come to any conclusions. "I have only kept this a secret from you because I was afraid. I don't want you to feel that I have been purposefully betraying you all of these years. Not a day has gone by where I haven't thought about telling you."
"Just spit out what you want to tell me," said Arthur. "I can already guess what you are going to tell me, but I would rather hear it from you than have to tell you what I am thinking."
"I am a warlock," said Merlin who was slightly relieved to have finally said what he wanted to say for so long.
Honestly that is not what Arthur had been expecting. He didn't even know what a warlock was. The confusion was evident on his face to all who were present. "What the hell is a warlock?"
Arthur just wasn't going to make this easy on Merlin. Merlin had hoped Arthur would already know, but he should have assumed that the prince would not know anything beyond sorcerer. Merlin hadn't even known he was a warlock until he had been told by a dragon when he first arrived in Camelot.
"A warlock is someone who is basically a creature of magic," said Merlin. "A warlock is born with magic. I have been able to use magic before I could walk or talk. I could slow time down and move objects around the room for as long as I can remember. I was never taught magic and it mostly just came out instinctively. Warlocks are different from sorcerers since sorcerers have to learn how to use magic and warlocks are born with magic. I never knew what I was before I came to Camelot. I used to always think I was a monster since I didn't understand what I was. I have learned a lot since I have come to Camelot and have only ever used my magic to help you and help Camelot. I might have also used magic to get done some of my chores."
Arthur was honestly speechless. He knew he should be calling for the guards, but part of him couldn't even believe what his friend was telling him. Arthur knew that all magic was evil and that all sorcerers made a conscious decision to practice the evil that was magic. If Merlin was born with magic and had never had a choice in the matter, then maybe that made him different from others who practiced magic. Arthur noticed every eye in the room looking at him, but he couldn't bring himself to say anything just yet. He needed more time to run through this reveal in his head. He could not afford to act rashly in this situation. There had been so many attacks on Camelot over the years, and Merlin was always there, but the two of them always made it out alive. What could Merlin have gained from others failing and Arthur surviving?
"What?" This was all Arthur could manage to get out. He could not think of a single intelligent question to ask at the moment.
Merlin rolled his eyes before explaining a bit further. "Apparently I am supposed to be the most powerful warlock to ever live. The druids have a special name for me and prophesies about the two of us. They refer to me as Emrys and to you as the once and future king. We are two sides of the same coin and it will take both of us to unite Albion."
"Why would a warlock want to help Uther's son?" Arthur asked having finally found his voice. "What have you even done?"
"I was only made your manservant because I saved your life," said an exasperated Merlin. His royal pratness really had no idea how many times he had saved his life. "I saved your life using magic that time and many times after that."
"There are legends about the two of us in the future?" Arthur asked, directing his question at the Doctor and Rose.
"I grew up on stories of King Arthur and Merlin," said Rose. "There were so many books with the legend varying slightly in different versions. You two are probably the most famous historical figures. Well now I know that it was all historical, but no one has ever really been sure whether the two of you existed or not. I was born in London and the Doctor picked me up in the year 2005. If it weren't for the two of you than who knows what my future would be like."
"So why are the two of you really here?" Arthur asked still skeptical by their motives for accompanying Merlin.
"I had a feeling that Merlin would never get the courage to tell you his secret without us here," said the Doctor. "We both know what happens with the two of you, but Merlin would have no way of knowing if he had to keep his nature a secret for the rest of his life or face execution. I made Merlin a promise that I would help him."
"What exactly did you promise him?" Arthur asked with a slight hint of fear in his voice. He had a feeling that the Doctor was someone he didn't want as an enemy.
It was Merlin who answered this question since it would probably sound worse coming from the Doctor. "The Doctor promised me that if you did not take the news well, than he would erase this encounter from your memory. It would be like I had never told you my secret. I would go back into hiding until a time when I thought you could handle the truth."
"You would let this creature mess with my memories?" Arthur was outraged at the mere suggestion of such a thing. He could have almost believed Merlin wanted to help him since he had proved his loyalty. Arthur thought he could have overlooked the magic since Merlin was born with that ability. Now Arthur knew that Merlin could not be trusted.
"Can't you understand how scared I am?" Merlin asked with panic in his voice. "I have to live every day of my life in fear. I don't know why, but I trust the Doctor. He made the offer to get me to open up to you. I think the only case where I would have asked him to go through with it was if you were planning on having me executed. I can't really help you and fulfill our destiny if I am dead."
Arthur took a deep sigh and shook his head. He really had no idea what to do. He still had his father's words running though his head about the evilness of magic and those who used magic. He was still having trouble seeing how magic could ever be used for anything good.
"Show me some good magic," commanded Arthur and taking Merlin completely by surprise. "I want to trust you Merlin and I know why you didn't feel like you could tell me, but you shouldn't have had to resort to help from an unearthly creature such as the Doctor. By the way Doctor, we will be discussing you next."
"I don't know what to show you," said Merlin. "Mainly the magic I use is used to save your life. If I show you any kind of trick, than you will just find a way that it can be used for evil."
"Just show me something," Arthur commanded once more.
Merlin looked around the room for something he could use to show a bit of playful magic. He saw some smoke coming from the candles around the room and decided to use the spell he had used which had gotten the witchfinder called in before. "Hors, beride þá heofonum." A figure of a horse rose up from the smoke and Merlin made it gallop around Arthur's chambers. Of course Merlin's eyes had flashed gold and this gave Arthur complete proof of what Merlin had been telling him. Merlin was hurt when he saw Arthur recoil after the display of magic. Arthur was now not even meeting Merlin's eyes.
Arthur couldn't help his reaction to the display of magic. His first instinct was to recoil from any use of magic. He could not even bring himself to look into Merlin's eyes now for fear that he would see them turn that inhuman gold again. "Thank you, Merlin," said Arthur after a moment since he needed to say something. "I want to trust you, I really do, but I don't know how after everything I have been taught all my life."
"I think I can help there," said the Doctor cutting in. "I can share my memories with you of what I know of Arthurian legend and also throw in my basic history so that we can skip that conversation. This time is about the two of you."
"Alright," said Arthur putting on a brave face. "Now the information you will be receiving will show other faces that are not your own. Think of performances you have seen where people are playing various characters. These are people who are pretending to be you and Merlin. The information I will be throwing in about me will confuse you. My people have a way to cheat death called regeneration. I have had nine other bodies besides the one I currently have. When a Time Lord dies they can literally turn into a new person. I gain new likes and dislikes, but I remain the same person. Most of my life has been spent fighting alien threats and saving various worlds. I don't like weapons and I use my intellect to defeat my enemies. I am just preparing you so you know what to expect."
"Just do it," said Arthur.
The Doctor stood up and went over to Arthur and looked into his eyes for a moment before head butting the prince. This was the quickest way he knew to transfer memories to another person, but he hated doing it. He hope he would never be required to do something like this again.
Arthur was shocked at first to be head butted, but then his mind was flooded with so much knowledge he thought his head was going to explode. He saw people he assumed were supposed to be himself and Merlin doing wonderful things together. He saw what looked like art work come to life also depicting their lives. Next he saw the Doctor but he was an old man followed by various other men. Some of them were young looking and some of them were old. He saw what he could only assume were monsters being defeated time and time again by the Doctor who always seemed to never be alone. Arthur saw some of what the future held, but he didn't understand most of what he saw. People were dressed strangely and there were strange devices everywhere. "Next time warn me before you head butt me, Doctor," said a slightly irritated Arthur.
"Trust me when I say I hope to never have to do that again," said the Doctor rubbing his forehead. "It was worth it if it answered your questions."
"I have one question," said Arthur. "I saw strange beings in your memories. Were these creatures from other worlds such as you? Are you wearing some sort of disguise to make you look human?"
"I have seen many aliens in my time," said the Doctor. "There are so many different forms in this Universe. I am not wearing any kind of disguise. How you see me is how I actually look. Time Lords and humans look very similar with the main difference being that I have two hearts. I mainly meant if you had any questions about yourself or Merlin."
"Oh," said Arthur. "I don't think I do. After seeing how we are depicted in the future and hearing from you, Rose, and Merlin has answered my questions. I don't know if I can ever trust sorcerers or magic, but I know that I trust Merlin and owe him my life. He can help me see magic in a different light. I can't make any changes while I am still prince, but as soon as I am King I will give everyone a fair trial. No one will be punished for simply performing magic. Anyone who uses magic to harm another will be tried the same way as a criminal who has committed a crime without the use of magic."
Merlin ran around the table and hugged Arthur. Arthur was slightly frightened when Merlin raced towards him, but chuckled when he was pulled into a hug. It took Arthur a moment to comprehend the situation before he returned the hug. This was the first time the two of them had actually embraced and it felt fitting that it was right after the air was cleared of all secrets.
"Anything else I need to know or is that everything?" Arthur asked hoping that there weren't any other secrets.
"Well there is one more thing," said Merlin. "I am a Dragonlord. My father was Balinor and when he died I inherited his powers. I commanded the great dragon to leave and never attack Camelot again. You never actually slayed the dragon."
"Ah," said Arthur. He really couldn't even feign shock after everything else he had heard. Of course his manservant would be the most powerful magic user ever and also a Dragonlord. Arthur wondered how he ever got Merlin to do anything if he was this powerful. Arthur laughed at the thought of someone so powerful mucking out the stables.
Merlin gave a hesitant chuckle when he heard Arthur laughing. "What is so funny?"
"I have the most powerful warlock who is also the last Dragonlord mucking out the stables," said Arthur as he was gasping for air after trying to control his laughter. "You can't tell me that is not funny."
Merlin, the Doctor, and Rose all began laughing along with Arthur at his reaction to one last reveal. The air was cleared of secrets and Arthur had turned out to be even more accepting than Merlin could have ever hoped.
"I still have more thinking to do," said Arthur. "I don't know what to do now that my world has been turned upside down. I know I can never convince my father to believe differently than he does. He would probably think I was enchanted if I even tried, but I need to think about what I can do while I am still just the crowned prince. I will bid you all goodnight."
"We won't be here when you wake up," said the Doctor. "It has been an honor meeting you both, but we have done what we needed to do here. It is time we moved on."
"Can't we at least spend the night?" Rose asked the Doctor with a hopeful look in her eyes. She wanted to spend the night in a castle.
"Fine, but we are leaving first thing in the morning," said the Doctor, not able to deny Rose this request.
"You two are going to be brilliant," said the Doctor with a grin. "Maybe we will come back and see how the two of you are in a few years." The Doctor and Rose both shook hands with Merlin and Arthur before retiring to their own room.
Merlin was about to follow them out the door when he was stopped by Arthur. Arthur was holding out his armor and laundry to Merlin. Arthur received a blank look from his manservant so he dropped everything into Merlin's arms.
"Just because you and I have some big destiny together doesn't mean you don't still have chores to do," said a smiling Arthur. "I will need my armor polished, my sword sharpened, my clothes washed, and tomorrow I will need my chambers cleaned and the stables mucked out. Now that I know you can use magic, I expect chores will be done more quickly now and that will leave you and I more time to discuss our plans for the future."
"Yes, Sire," said Merlin with a mock bow and ended up dropped most of what he was holding.
"You really are useless," said Arthur.
"Thank you," said Merlin who was grinning with happiness. Even Arthur's insults couldn't touch him since he know knew everything was going to work out just fine.
"Goodnight, Merlin," said Arthur.
"Goodnight, Arthur," said Merlin after he picked up the clothing and armor he had dropped and exited Arthur's chambers.
A/N: Hope you all enjoyed this one shot. I know there wasn't really any action, but for a one shot I didn't want to get into there being a villain like in my other stories since I wanted to focus on the characters and their interactions with each other. I will be continuing my other stories soon. I hope to have the next chapter of Hellmouth or Time Rift up soon.