Arthur banged on Gaius's door, gritting his teeth in frustration when no one answered. He resisted the urge to kick the door down as he roared Gaius's name.
"GAIUS? Open this door at once!"
He felt a sting of guilt as he remembered that Gaius would most likely be with Merlin, probably giving him medicine to help him fight off his illness. It was that realisation which stopped him yelling for Gaius again, and he stood quietly until the door was eventually opened.
"Gaius!" Arthur exclaimed, rushing into the room. "How is he?"
"Not very well, I'm afraid, sire," Gaius replied, his face expressing surprise as he watched Arthur scan the room impatiently. "He'll be alright, of course, but it will take a few weeks before he is well enough to return to work."
Arthur nodded. "Where is he?"
Gaius pointed at a door in the corner of the room. "Through there."
Arthur hurried across the room and pushed open the door. He was met with the sight of Merlin lying in bed, apparently fast asleep.
"Merlin!" Arthur hissed, but his friend didn't move. Arthur grabbed the nearest chair and placed it next to Merlin's bed, unsure why he wanted to stay when Merlin was clearly sleeping. However, he hated the thought of simply leaving to continue his day when his best friend was ill. He sat down and stared at the top of Merlin's head, barely visible underneath the blankets.
Merlin's hair looked damp with sweat and his forehead was pale. The rest of him was hidden under the copious amounts of covers. Arthur felt a sense of helplessness as Merlin rolled over in his sleep, mumbling something, his face screwed up in pain.
"Is everything alright, sire?" Arthur heard Gaius ask from behind him. He glanced round to where Gaius was closing the door, a bottle of medicine in his hand.
"He was sleeping up until now, but he's just began to stir," said Arthur, gesturing to where Merlin was now tossing and turning.
Gaius nodded, stepping forward. "I'll give him some of this."
"Is there anything I can do?" said Arthur, feeling a sense of shame that he was being so obvious about his concern for the servant. He could only hope Gaius wouldn't tell Merlin about it when he was feeling better.
"Nothing, I'm afraid," said Gaius, smiling at him with a hint of sympathy in his eyes.
"Well, is there anything he'd like?" said Arthur, trying not to convey the desperation he felt at these words. He couldn't help feeling useless as he watched Gaius unscrewing the top of the bottle. "Any food or anything?"
Gaius shook his head. "He can't eat anything now, not when he's like this. It's a very kind offer though, thank you sire."
"I could bring something here for him to eat when he gets better!" said Arthur hopefully.
"You could," Gaius began, "but don't feel you have to-"
Arthur ran out of the room, not bothering to listen to what Gaius had to say. He knew that Merlin's favourite food was honey cakes, although he had told Arthur the other week that he hardly ever ate them. Arthur could understand why, as they were the kind of food only nobles ate, like Arthur himself.
Arthur found a nearby servant and ordered a couple of large honey cakes to be brought to Gaius. As the servant scurried off, he heard a cough from behind him.
Arthur swung round and found himself face to face with Gwaine. "What?"
Gwaine grinned. "You forgot about the meeting. It started a couple of minutes ago."
Arthur groaned. "Brilliant."
"I can tell them you're busy-" began Gwaine hopefully, but Arthur shook his head at once.
"No, I'm coming."
Gwaine looked disappointed. "If you have to."
The meeting took a couple of hours, and Arthur felt increasingly impatient with every second that passed. As soon as it was finished, he rushed in the direction of Gaius's chambers, banging on the door.
Gaius opened the door almost at once. "It's nice to see you again, sire."
"Did you get the honey cakes?" said Arthur anxiously.
Gaius nodded. "Thank you for sending them to Merlin, sire."
"Has he been able to eat them yet?"
Gaius smiled. "He's managed to take a couple of bites from one of them."
"Can I see him?" said Arthur, coming further into the room.
"Of course, sire," Gaius replied.
Arthur pushed open the door and couldn't hold back the smile as he saw Merlin lying in bed with a faint smile on his face which widened as he caught sight of Arthur.
"Arthur, thank you for the-" he began to croak.
"Think nothing of it," said Arthur quickly. "It was Gaius who suggested it."
Merlin looked as though he had the urge to laugh. "Well, thank you anyway."
"No problem," Arthur replied, shrugging offhandedly. "So, are you feeling better now?"
"A bit," said Merlin hoarsely. "I'll be back to work in a few weeks, not that you'd be pleased to hear that."
Arthur laughed. "I'll live."
Merlin reached a hand out to the plate of honey cakes next to him. "These are really nice!"
Arthur watched Merlin take a small bite from one of the cakes, and decided that being kind to other people wasn't so hard after all.
A/N: So that's the end of this fic – thank you to everyone who has reviewed! Although this fic is finished, I'm probably going to write more Merlin/Arthur bromance fics sometime in the future, so you can read them if you wanted this fic to continue! :)