Hello! The story you are about to read will be my first uploaded fan fiction on this cite. I have to give alot of the credit to user: SpanaHana and her story "Never Lose Hope." I read this story and loved the idea behind it, but the grammar was off, the writing swapped tenses, and the run-on sentences were infinite... now don't get mad Spana! I was originally going to edit your story and send it to you, but I figured some people may enjoy my version better, who knows! I seriously loved yours but it wasn't my style of writing, and I was having difficulties with it.

To other readers of this... Enjoy!

Chapter 1

Merlin hung there, waiting for someone, anyone to turn up and save him. He was inches away from giving up all hope.

"Ready to tell me who Emrys is yet?" a door unlocked as he heard Morgana snarl at him from across the room. He squeezed his eyes shut as he heard her footsteps approaching him.

The sound of a knife being unsheathed made his eyelids flutter open again. Morgana stood in front of him, her face set in a wicked smile as she caressed her favorite knife.

Arthur, please, Merlin shouted internally Help me.

- 3 days earlier –

"Hurry up Merlin!" called Arthur, "Are you trying to make us late?"

"Well maybe if you weren't such a prat you would learn to do some work instead of only giving out orders." Merlin mumbled as he packed up the last bit of their camp supplies. "Then we would already be on our way."

Arthur rolled his eyes. "I heard that. You're my servant and I'm the king, so it's your job to serve me."

"I thought it was your job to help look after the citizens and seeing as I'm a citizen of Camelot, you should help me tidy your things, sire."

"Just finish up and stop complaining like a girl!" Arthur retorted, resigned to Merlin's censure.

Gwaine, Percival, Elyan, and Leon exchanged humored glances, sniggering at the orthodox banter between their king and Merlin. It was a regular occurrence that they had all accustomed themselves to, especially when on patrols or hunting trips.

Just then Merlin tied the last of their things onto his saddle and mounted. The rest of the party, already mounted, began riding away. Merlin took his place beside Arthur in the front and they trotted off.

It was merely ten minutes into their ride when Merlin felt a change in the air. His skin tingled, and he had a sensation in his gut that he knew only he would get. He slowed his horse to a halt.

Arthur noticed he had stopped and sighed, turning towards him. "Come on Merlin! We are trying to return to Camelot before sunset!" He kicked his horse forward.

Merlin glanced around, worried. "Wait! Arthur, something's wrong…"

"Oh is it one of your funny feelings?" Arthur joked, but his face shifted. A hint of anxiety flashed through his blue eyes. In truth, he was worried. As much as he hated to admit, Merlin tended to be right about his funny feelings.

"He might be right Arthur." Gwaine said, who always heeded the words of his trustworthy friend.

Arthur tried to regain composure, squinting his eyes in false disbelief. "Oh not you as well Gwaine! I think you have been spending too much time around Merlin.

"Arthur, can you hear anything?" Gwaine asked, staring into the trees. Arthur listened, following his knight's gaze and then sweeping the forest floor. There was nothing but silence.

"No I can't so can we keep mov…" Arthur's thoughts caught up to him as he realized what he was saying. It was quiet, way too quiet for a forest normally alive with bird song and a strong wind rustling the leaves. However at that time there was nothing but the steady breathing of the men around him.

"Let's move, quickly." Arthur said. Alert and weary, he spurred his horse into a canter. The rest of the group followed closely behind.

Suddenly the 'woosh' of an arrow was heard, and it soared by, planting itself in a tree where Arthur's head had been only seconds before. A battle cry erupted from the trees and shrubbery, followed by a group of mercenaries who charged out, surrounding the knights of Camelot. The red caped men dismounted from their horses and unsheathed their swords, surveying the large group of raggedy men. The fight would be unfair, leaving around five mercenaries for each of the knights. Nevertheless the men charged the renegades, hoping they could defend themselves.

Merlin was fighting one of the mercenaries with the sword Arthur had given him for patrols, due to their constant bad luck, when he saw that he was being backed into a tree. He glanced around before chanting "Ahatian!" The mercenary let out a yelp as he dropped his now boiling hot sword. It gave Merlin a chance to land a blow to his side. The mercenary dropped onto the ground, and Merlin ran back into the fray.

He re-examined the small battlefield, and was pleased to see all of his friends still fighting. The poor skill of the mercenaries couldn't match the skill of the knights of Camelot, and the mercenaries were dropping quickly.

He shot a glance in Arthur's direction, and though his back was turned to him he could see him defeating man after man. Merlin's mouth twitched upwards, but abruptly saw two giant men creeping up behind Arthur. He shouted Arthur's name, but knew he had to do something. As Arthur cut down his current opponent, he began turning to face his friend at the exact moment Merlin hissed an enchantment that sent one of the mercenaries soaring backwards into a tree.

Arthur's eyes connected with his loyal and trusted servant seconds before an unnatural glowing gold color slipped from his eyes and they returned to their usual clear blue. It distracted him long enough that he didn't notice the other man headed for him. Did his eyes just catch the sun oddly? Arthur thought in a split second, pondering what he had just seen.

Merlin's eyes widened, and suddenly the man was upon Arthur. Arthur was totally unprepared, still frozen to the ground and looking at his servant. Merlin had no choice, he sent the other man flying away from the king, knocking himself out on a rock ledged in the ground.

Merlin forced himself to look back up at Arthur, and he noticed Arthur's expression change as he realized where the treasonous words had been uttered from. He realized that magic had just sent those two men flying. Arthur started walking towards Merlin, his face suddenly stoic. Merlin was suddenly scared as to what was going to happen, but just then Arthur's face broke into a concerned expression.

As the knights gathered around Arthur he stared behind Merlin, his face changing yet again to anger and what seemed to be a hint of sadness.

"Hello brother." Morgana said, and casually strolled towards the group, her hair done up wildly and an evil smirk dancing along her face. "Miss me?"

Merlin slowly turned, and came face to face with the person he despised the most. He started backing up to Arthur and the knights.

"Folgie min bebeod." Morgana incanted, and then Merlin was frozen to the spot. He could not move, no matter how much he wanted to be beside Arthur. Gwaine looked from Merlin to Morgana, anger tracing through every crevice on his face. He held his sword up, ready to attack.

Arthur held Gwaine back. "What do you want Morgana, haven't you done enough already?" Surprisingly his voice was calm, unlike the men around him.

"Just thought I'd drop by and collect something to help me with my troubles." She said slyly.

"What does this have to do with my manservant?" Arthur gestured towards a helpless Merlin.

"Servant!" Morgana cackled, amused. "I think we both know Merlin is more than your servant." She glanced down at Merlin, who scowled at her. "I think "friend" would be a more appropriate term."

"But…" Arthur started. Morgana interrupted.

"Stop being so daft, Arthur. You'd think you would've stopped denying it by now, but no matter. I'm not here to talk about your feelings." Morgana said. "I'll just take what I came for and be on my way."

"We won't let you escape that easily, you witch!" Gwaine growled.

"Oh, and how are you going to stop me?" Morgana chuckled.

Gwaine moved forward once again, but Arthur would not yield to him. Gwaine glared at his king but Arthur ignored him.

Morgana laughed. "That's what I thought. You may say you are the best knights in the realm but truly you are just weak."

Arthur was exasperated. "Just leave Morgana; you have no business being in Camelot. Go now and no harm will come to you."

"Yes, I'll go," Morgana replied, the devil dancing in her dark eyes. "But if you don't mind Merlin will be coming with me."

Before Arthur or the knights could react, Morgana gestured to Merlin and chanted. "Bedyrne us! Astyre us panonweard!" In that second both vanished.

Gwaine rushed forward, shouting curses at the empty space where Morgana was moments before. Percival and Elyan tried to calm him down, but both still had worry in their eyes as they processed what they had just witnessed. Leon stood next to Arthur, waiting for an order from his king. Unfortunately Arthur stood shell-shocked as his brain desperately tried to sort out his thoughts. There was the matter of what had just happened and how to proceed, but his brain was swirling around only one thought, a thought that made him sick to his stomach.

Merlin had magic.

Gwaine had stopped his ranting and turned to look at Arthur, whose face was pale and donned a blank expression. Anger seeped back into Gwaine's brow and he stormed back to Arthur. "Why are you still standing here, Arthur? We have to help Merlin; we need to go after him!" Gwaine exclaimed. He didn't wait for a reply, but instead started preparing to mount his black horse.

"No." Arthur snapped out of his trance, looking at Gwaine.

"Sire?" Gwaine half snarled, but his face twisted into an odd half smile, as if he couldn't believe what he had just heard.

"I said no, we are not going after Merlin."

All traces of humor left Gwaine's face. "Please tell me you're joking? Or are you a total idiot?"

"Gwaine! Calm down, you are talking to your king." Leon stated, still by Arthur's side but suddenly a tad weary at the king's statement.

"How can you be calm? Did you hear what he said? He said that he isn't going to look for Merlin, his most loyal and trusted friend!" he spat the last words at Arthur.

Arthur locked eyes with Gwaine. " Merlin is not my friend."

"Do you hear what you're saying? You aren't making no sense!"

Percival stepped forward. "Gwaine, calm down. I think we need to bring this matter home with us, it wouldn't be fit to ride off now with no leads as to where Morgana has gone."

"He's right. We are expected back in Camelot tonight. It would be unwise to stay in the forest any longer, sire. We would worry your people." Leon reasoned.

Gwaine still held his ground. "Who knows how long Merlin has, or what Morgana will do to him! We need to fetch him from her now!"

"No, Leon is right." Elyan inserted. "We know Morgana is involved and we need all the help we can get."

Gwaine let out a short sigh, about to disagree again but he was interrupted.

"For once, just shut up and listen to orders." Arthur proposed. "We will ride back to Camelot." He strode toward his horse, glancing at Merlin's dark brown stallion. He shook his head and mounted, immediately trotting towards his home. The rest of them mounted while Gwaine tied Merlin's horse to his.

"Don't worry, Merlin. I will find you even if Arthur won't." breathed Gwaine as he mounted and galloped down the path the others had gone. Meanwhile, in the opposite direction, Morgana was launching her plan to get Merlin to give her some specific information. She would use any method she needed to get her information, no matter how painful.