Warnings: Mild Dubcon, Explicit
Author's Notes: This was written for Camelot Drabble's Holiday Gift Exchange for my dear friend RocknVaughn. She asked for magical dubcon and this was the result!
A HUGE thank you to Millionstar for the on-the-spot beta. I can't tell you how grateful I am!
Disclaimer:Merlin is owned by the BBC and Shine. No copyright infringement is intended and no profit is being made. Don't send us to the dungeons!
Hot, so damn hot, he was burning. Merlin writhed on the bed, fire coursing through his body as foreign magic ignited the blood in his veins. His own magic fought the invading force but even his power couldn't defeat the concentrated will of sevenmighty sorcerers.
They meant for the fire to consume his king but Merlin would not allow that. They would not have him. If those devilswere going to claim a victim, it wouldn't be Arthur, it would be Merlin. He might not be able to defeat the spell consuming him but he could resist it…and resist he would.
"Before the day is done, Emrys, your king will be undone. Either you will take him from this world or we will take him after you are gone. Without you to protect him, Arthur Pendragon cannot survive. You know it's true, and soon so shall he."
"Why are you doing this?" Merlin glared at the men surrounding him.
"Emrys, you aren't a fool, no matter what your king believes. "
"We've been watching you both for such a long, long time."
"You have both had countless chances to turn away from the path laid down by Uther Pendragon but you have failed to do so. You may be the single greatest sorcerer the world has ever known, Emrys. But your power counts for nothing if you choose not to use it for the greater good."
"I've only ever used my power for good!" He was outraged. How dare they accuse him of misusing his magic?!
"For the good of Arthur Pendragon, never for anyone else! Never for your kin, for your kind! You have watched us suffer, stood by as we were executed by not just one king but two!"
"You chose your side, Emrys and it is not ours."
The seven men surrounding him began to chant in unison, their eyes glowing and unholy red. Ugly orange flames crackled in the palms of their outstretched hands. As one, they flicked their fingers releasing the fire in Merlin's direction. He howled in agony as it burned through his skin and sank into his bones. Collapsing on the ground, he convulsed as the fire consumed him. His magic fought the spell as it had fought the sorcerers-in vain. The spell swept through him and bonded to his very essence. His power was overwhelmed and made a slave to the will imposed on it by the powerful mages.
Then, as suddenly as it had seized him, the magic released him. He lay still on the ground, breathless and sweating. He hadn't the energy to rise again when they moved closer, tightening the circle around him.
"You will humble Arthur Pendragon or you will die."
"Either you force him to submit to your body and release the magic of the spell through him or it will consume and kill you."
"What will happen to Arthur if I do release the magic through him?" The words stung a throat scraped raw by screaming.
"He will die, as he should have long ago."
"If you do not, the magic will kill you and then we will kill him. This is your only chance, Emrys. Join us or be destroyed with your king."
Merlin could hear voices outside his room. Gaius' familiar drawl reeled around the sharp edges of Arthur's clipped tones. Merlin couldn't make out what they were saying but just the sound of Arthur's voice sent his temperature up another notch. Merlin was so hot he wouldn't have been surprised if his skin had started smoking. It was a dry, tight heat. He did not sweat; instead he itched.
The desire to join them was powerful. However, Merlin continued to resist the urge to go to Arthur. The desire to slam him up against the nearest vertical surface and ravage his mouth for hours was damn near irresistible.
Not that the impulse itself was a new one. Merlin had been fantasizing about ravaging Arthur's mouth (and certain other parts of his anatomy) with a depressing regularity practically since his arrival in Camelot nearly five years ago. It was the intensity of his desire that was alarming. It went far beyond an impulse; it had become an outrightcompulsion.
He turned onto his belly and clung to the bed, burying his head under his pillow in a vain attempt to block out the sound of Arthur's voice. His time was running short. He knew it was unlikely that Gaius would find a way to reverse the curse before it killed him but there was no way he would hurt Arthur to save himself.
It wasn't just loyalty to his king or dedication to his destiny that fueled his refusal to give in to the curse, it was the overwhelming love he had for Arthur. He'd long since come to terms with his hopelessly unrequited love for the man who lived behind the mask of royalty. That affection guided almost every decision he made from the mundane to the profound and everything in between because for Merlin, Arthur waseverything.
This wasn't the first time he'd been prepared to die for the infuriating prat, but it might very well prove to be the last. He waited patiently until the voices faded and he was left alone once more to burn in solitude.
He'd be all right as long as Arthur didn't touch him. He could just about control the compulsion to throw Arthur down on the nearest surface and take him. As long as Arthur didn't touchhim.
When he failed to heed an earlier summons, he'd been snatched up by the guard and escorted to the King's chambers where he stood just inside the door. He was ready to bolt should Arthur come any closer than half a room away. However, Arthur stayed where he was, back against one of the arches that separated the outer and inner chambers.
Merlin listened in growing horror as the King revealed to him what Gaius had told him while Merlin was "sleeping."
"He said if I give myself to you willingly, then the curse will rebound on the casters and both you and I will be spared."
Merlin felt his jaw drop and his eyes bug.
"Arthur, what are you saying?" His voice was no louder than a whisper.
"Merlin, if ever there was a man in Albion who could humble me without need of magic, it's you."
The words hit Merlin like a punch to the gut.
"No! Please…I don't…I don't want that." He never had. No matter how much of a prat Arthur could be, Merlin never wanted to see him subjugated.
"Shhh…it's all right."
Merlin shook his head. It was everything but all right.
"Merlin, I won't lose you like this. I won't!"
Merlin opened his mouth to retort that neither would he lose Arthur this way when the stubborn prat reached out and took Merlin by the hand. As soon as their skin touched, the magic raging through Merlin flared up and consumed him completely. He felt his control snap; white hot energy blazed every nerve in his body before it burst from him to envelop the King in a shimmering red haze. Arthur's entire body arched backward, drawn taut as a bow. He crashed to his knees at Merlin's feet, head thrown back a moan falling from his slack lips as shudders wracked his body.
In an instant Merlin became the aggressor, crowding Arthur with long legs and hands to his shoulders. The King scrambled on his knees, shuffling back toward the bed as Merlin shoved him.
Conflicting emotions mercilessly buffeted Merlin's heart and mind. Part of him screamed for this to stop. This was all wrong. Arthur should kneel for no man, especially not Merlin. Another part of him was undeniably turned on by Arthur's easy submission to his desires.
With his back against the footboard, Arthur scrabbled desperately at the front of Merlin's trousers. He was mouthing at the cloth, panting soft pleas against Merlin's rising flesh. His fingers were clumsy on the laces, frantic and needy.
"Please…please, Merlin. Let me, please let me."
Merlin's heart broke hearing those words fall from Arthur's lips. How many times had he dreamed of such a moment? How often had he fantasized that Arthur could want him with a desperation that matched his own? But Arthur never had, and really, he never would. This was the spell talking through him. There was nothing of Arthur in it. How could there be with such dark magic controlling him? It was forcing Arthur to behave this way, to wantMerlin. It wasn't real and it never could be.
He gave himself to this willingly…
The poisonous little voice whispering in his mind was filled with selfish desire. Arthur had offered himself as a sacrifice to save a friend, nothing more. He didn't desireMerlin. After this, he had to wonder if Arthur would even want to be his friend let alone anything more.
Arthur had Merlin's trousers open now and the warlock couldn't help gasping as Arthur's wet tongue touched his flesh for the first time. Arthur groaned and wrapped a callused hand around Merlin's most sensitive flesh as he slid the tip of Merlin's cock across his soft, pillowy mouth. When he moaned again and engulfed the whole head with wet lips, Merlin cried out in shocked pleasure. Burying his long fingers in Arthur's hair he couldn't help the small jerk of his hips that pushed more of his length into the welcoming heat of Arthur's mouth.
Biting his lips, Merlin fought for control. Arthur was moaning continuously around Merlin's cock and swirling his tongue up and down its length as if it was the most wonderful thing he'd ever had in his mouth. The urge to let Arthur keep going was almost overwhelming but it was too good. If he allowed Arthur to continue, he wouldn't last much longer. As tempting as that was (and gods was it tempting!) it could prove deadly as both the sorcerers and Gaius had been clear on just howhe must "humble" the King.
The heat was rising in his blood again, no longer satisfied with this lesser show of submission. Time was running short and if he wasn't inside Arthur soon, he'd be immolated by the magic beginning to sear his bones. He wrenched Arthur's head away and stumbled back a few paces. Arthur quested after him for a moment, his eyes opening slowly, his chest heaving with short, panting pulls. Merlin's air was even less certain, his breathing erratic as the magic grew more insistent, pain beginning to spark along every nerve ending.
"Arthur…"his voice was hoarse, desperate, scraping harshly over his own eardrums. "Please…I'm so sorry…I need…you…I…"
He couldn't finish but he didn't need to. Suddenly Arthur was there, wrapping himself around Merlin, hands running up and down his back, soothing his shattered nerves, calming his labored breathing. He walked backward, leading Merlin to the bed.
Something about the care Arthur was taking with him struck him as wrong. Shouldn't he be the one to soothe Arthur? He was the one forcing himself on his friend, shouldn't Arthur be the one trembling and gasping for breath? There, there it was, the first shudder across Arthur's skin as Merlin ran gentle fingers over his bare chest. Wait. When had Arthur lost his tunic?
Merlin's senses were slurring, he could see Arthur with his hands and smell him on his tongue. The sound of their ragged breathing rippled across his eyes while the feel of Arthur's soft skin echoed in his ears. The magic was pulling him apart, his awareness shredding and flying out in every direction save the one he most needed.
But Arthur was there, guiding him. He followed where his King led. There was a slick slide somewhere low. A slow stroke and a coiling warmth…and how could anything feel warm when he was already so hot? Then something reallyhotmoistly nudged against the place where Merlin ached and he pushed forward, instinctively searching for the haven he knew was there. There was a moment of tension, of resistance and then nothing but the almost unbearable relief of sliding into Arthur's flesh.
As soon as he completed that first stroke, his senses snapped back to their proper places, and Merlin had to pause for a second to adjust. Arthur lay beneath him, spread out on the bed, legs hooked around Merlin's waist. Sweat beaded on the King's flushed skin and his broad chest rose and fell with effort. His lips were bright red and slick with moisture. Merlin wanted nothing more than to lean forward to claim that mouth but the moment he stilled, Arthur began to keen and writhe and beg him for more. He reached for Merlin's shoulders and tugged at him with increasing impatience.
"Merlin! Merlin, please! Need it, need you!"
Now it was Merlin's turn to soothe Arthur. He ran a possessive hand gently down Arthur's chest as he slowly drew his hips back.
"Shh, shh. It's all right, Arthur. I'm here; I'm here…gonna give you what you need. It's all for you, all for you."
Snapping forward, he drove deeper into Arthur's sweetly yielding flesh. Another slow withdrawal followed, then a sharp, swift thrust. Arthur tried to force a quicker pace but Merlin was finally in control and for the first time since this all began, he was in no hurry. The fire of the curse continued to lick at his flesh but it had lost some of its intensity. Arthur was beneath him now, arse squeezing exquisitely around his weeping prick. As long as Merlin reached his completion the curse would be satisfied. He could take his time. When would he ever get this opportunity again?
Arthur continued to beg and Merlin continued to murmur reassurance. Canting his hips slightly, he changed the angle of this thrust with every forward motion until he found the one that made his king arch off the bed with a strangled shout. A smug smile spreading across his face, Merlin held steady and finally began to speed his stroke.
Sweat poured off him as the magical fever began to break. The compulsion began to ease away, but Merlin's pleasure only increased as full command of his senses returned to him. The reality of Arthur was even better than the most intense fantasy he'd ever had. Nothing in his life had everfelt like this. Merlin wanted it to last forever, but the strain was just too great. The curse had left him extra sensitive and Arthur's spell-fueled excitement was just too much to take. Sooner than he wanted, he felt the familiar tightening in his balls that warned him his release was almost upon him.
A whispered word slicked his hand and he wrapped it around Arthur's straining length. Arthur gurgled incoherently and thrashed beneath him as he stripped his king's rock-hard cock in time with his own stroking rhythm. By the time Arthur tightened around him and began to spurt his release Merlin was desperate to cum. He let go with a deep groan of satisfaction and felt the last of the curse loose its hold on him as he pulsed deep within Arthur's body.
Merlin slumped forward to lay in a sprawl half on and half off Arthur's broad chest. He curled into the sweaty heat of Arthur's side and felt the depressing crush of reality descend on him in a sickening rush.
"I'm sorry. Oh, gods, Arthur I am so, so sorry! I never…you should never have had to…and…I…I never wanted you to…I'm sorry!"
Arthur wrapped an arm around Merlin, holding the trembling warlock close to his chest.
"Shut up, Merlin. None of this was your fault."
"I should have…I…"
Merlin couldn't articulate whyhe felt so guilty. He knew it had less to do with the curse and more to do with his unrequited feelings for his friend. No, he wasn't really responsible for the actions of the sorcerers who had forced them together. However, he couldn't deny that those fleeting moments with Arthur were the sweetest of his life. He could never tell Arthur that, not after he'd sacrificed himself for Merlin so selflessly. Tears of guilt and gratitude forced their way past his tightly closed eyelids. He couldn't seem to stop shaking.
Arthur shifted to look down at him then swept a gentle thumb over the arch of one wet cheekbone.
"Merlin, please don't. Don't cry. I'm sorry. There wasn't anything else I could do! I couldn't let you die. I couldn't lose you."
He paused and brought his forehead down to touch Merlin's. Arthur's voice roughened as he continued to speak. All his brash confidence seemed to flee in the face of Merlin's tears.
"I know. I know you wouldn't ever…wouldn't want me like that but…what else could I do? Please don't cry. I know…I know I must…disgust you after…I know you had to, that you'd never want to but…I'm sorry! I couldn't help myself! But I won't ever expect you to do it again. No matter how good it was for me, I knowyou were only doing it because of the curse. I won't expect anything from you ever again, I swear!"
Merlin froze as he listened to Arthur's halting speech. He held his breath for several long, distorted heartbeats, willing himself not to hope but he was unable to stop the wild longing surging through his chest.
"Arthur? Are you…are you saying you wantedme? I mean, really wanted me? You didn't…it wasn't just the curse?"
"Are you serious? Merlin, how could you notknow that? Everyone in Camelot knows that!"
"Well how the hell could you think I only wanted you because of the stupid curse?! Anyone with eyes can see I've been in love with you for years!"
Merlin clapped a hand over his big mouth and stared at Arthur, stiff with horror at his own admission. That was a step too far. It was one thing for Arthur to admit he felt some attraction toward Merlin, but it was a far cry from declaring his undying love! However, far from drawing away in disgust, a smug little smile began to curve Arthur's mouth upward.
"Well, of course you have! After all, how could you resist?"
Merlin cuffed his king round the head before burying his face against Arthur's chest.
"You utter prat! It's a wonder I could see past your giant cabbage head long enough to find something worth admiring about you!"
Arthur's arms came around Merlin and hoisted him higher up on his chest. He nuzzled into Merlin's neck for a moment before sinking sharp teeth into the base of it. Merlin squealed and squirmed helplessly in his grip.
"Shut up, you idiot. I love you too…though I swear I don't know why."
"Yes, really, Merlin. Obviously I must have lost my mind somewhere along the way if you are the best I can do."
"Come here, you. Shut up and kiss me."
But Merlin went, sinking blissfully into the kiss for several long, satisfying minutes. When he drew back he met Arthur's eyes and saw the love and trust shining there. Merlin knew he'd never find a better moment than this one to share all his secrets with Arthur. The curse would have rebounded on the seven sorcerers by now but he had no doubt they wouldn't be the last to try to come at Arthur through Merlin. Arthur needed to know the truth about him. More than that though, Arthur deservedthe truth after all this time, and Merlin deserved the freedom that would come with his king's knowledge.
He stroked gentle fingers over Arthur's forehead and down over the curve of one high cheekbone. He took a deep breath and spoke.
"Arthur? There's something I need to tell you."