September 1990

Times were changing. As they always do. Merlin had seen many great changes in his time spent on this earth. So many that he paid little attention these days. He was an old man, set in his ways. When he passed the Lake of Avalon, no longer known by that name, he briefly reflected on a time that was lost long ago. Lost in myth and legend along with his dearest friend Arthur, the once and future king of Albion.

Those words no longer held any meaning despite his longing.

Too many centuries had passed.

Merlin stopped in his tracks, not that he glanced back but still the memories were there; they always were.

Arthur, he inwardly sighed. Then giving a resigned shake of his head, he willed his feet to move.

So many years and far too many tears had passed. He'd long ago given up in his belief in Albion. With everything he'd seen, brutal wars, the loss of so many lives, and if there was a time when he believed Albion would or should return was during World War II. That was the time when the future of England seemed at its gravest. But it hadn't happened. And nothing since then led Merlin to believe it ever would.

Magic was lost to the world, only making its return in fictional narratives. Film captured an essence of what once had been. People watched it as a form of escapism. Merlin watched, often marvelling at the slowly changing values towards magic. He'd seen the days when witches were burnt at the stake, not even possessing any magic. Of those that did, they faded into the mists of the night. The world was an emptier place as a result. Still people were searching, longing and hoping, even if they really didn't know what it was they searched for; what it was that had been lost.

Only Merlin knew. He'd buried the great dragon and stood alongside Guinevere as she returned magic to Camelot, basked in the last golden age of old religion meeting the new.

He'd out lived and buried all who was dear and precious to him. He'd aged himself alongside Gwen. It seemed to comfort her. He stayed with her son, Arthur's son, the son he never lived to see. Arthur's son who died so heroically in battle as his father had once done. Once Arthur's son died, the old world seemed to die with it, fear and doubt crept back. Dictatorship ruled, Kingdom's fell but still life went on. And Merlin remained the old eccentric man. When Arthur's son died the grief was too much, his burden too heavy to bear. Maybe it was in defiance that he chose to remain an old man. Whatever it was Merlin knew deep in his heart that the young eager faced Merlin he'd once been no longer had a place in this world, and that meant remaining old, fading into the shadows, becoming invisible.

The world has become so large Arthur, not even you would recognise it now. The knights of the round table a distant memory, along with nobility and great kings. Battles were not fought with swords, but weapons of mass destruction. Kings were merely puppets to the ruling government. Merlin couldn't imagine Arthur ever fitting in with this new world anymore than he did.

Sighing, Merlin tugged his jacket tightly around himself. Another truck flew past, hitting a puddle and splashing cold dirty water all over him. He muttered to himself and glanced up at the offending truck. What he saw in big golden letters made him stiffen - Pendragon Industries.

Merlin blinked. What? He stared in disbelief as the truck receded in to the distance. There was no mistaking the golden dragon logo.

A/N: I have this story roughly planned out in my mind and I'm already working on Chapter one. If you would like me to continue with it please leave a review in the way of inspiration.

I know stories about reincarnation have been done a LOT but this story is a little bit different and favourite characters do return in surprising ways. It's not my intention to rain on anyone's parade but I have read some really good reincarnation fanfics lately which have inspired me with this story.

Thanks for reading.