Merylin stood in the corridor as the warning bells rang through the castle. She looked out the window to see the guards filling the court yard.
"Help me! Please." She heard as a sharp pain ran through her head. "Hurry, I'm in the courtyard." Taking off down the hall, she ran down to the courtyard pausing when the voice spoke. "Please. Help me."
The guards had already searched half the yard by the time she saw a young boy huddled by a cart. He was hunched in on himself, hood pulled over his head, and tinge of blood on his hand. The head guard pointed to a location just opposite the boy.
"Why are they after you?" She thought to him.
"They're going to kill me."
Running to the side door closest to the boy, Merylin gestured for him to run to her. The guards spotted him as he ran with her up the stairs. They barely made it to the top before the mob started up behind them.
"Sorry Morgana," Merylin said, barging into the room, "but can we hide here? Please. The guards are looking for him. I-I didn't know what to do." She stuttered as a knocked sounded behind her.
"In there." Morgana said, pointing to her dressing screen before opening the door. "Yes, can I help you?"
"I'm sorry to disturb you, my Lady." The guard said as the boy collapsed in Merylin's arms. "We're searching for a young druid boy. We believe he came this way."
"I haven't seen anyone. Just me and my maid."
"Best keep the door closed and locked until we find him."
"Of course, thank you." Morgana shut the door and walked to the screen. She finds Merylin devoid of her tunic, just wearing her undershirt. The girl was using it to put pressure on the boys wound. "What do we do?" Morgana asked.
"Do you have any towels? I need to make a better compress for the blood." Gwen handed her the towels. She pulled off her belt and the boys tunic revealing a large cut on his side. "He's going to need stitches. Gwen, take my place. I have to get the materials from Gaius."
"You can't go out there looking like that. Take one of my tunics." Morgana said, handing Merylin one of hers. "Keep it."
Merylin returned half an hour later with the materials in hand and some water. Gwen moved so Merylin could tend to the boy, but stayed to hold his hand. Morgana stood at the open window as the boy's wound was tended to.
"What's your name?" Merylin asked to keep his mind off the needle, but he said nothing. "Come on, a lovely boy like you should have a name."
"Mordred." He whispered. "My name is Mordred."
"Nice to meet you, Mordred." The sound of execution drums caught her attention as she closed him up. "What now? Morgana?"
Outside, walking to the chopping block, was the man seen earlier with Mordred. Merylin recalled her first day in Camelot, it had gone nearly the same. A young child in an unknown place and a possibly innocent man put on trial. No matter how much she wanted to see the scene, Merylin stayed with the boy. He sat on her lap and leaned into her chest, listening to her heartbeat. She met Gwen's eyes as she went to lean on Merylin's left shoulder.
"People of Camelot," Uther projected, "the man before you is guilty of using enchantments and magic. Under our law, the sentence for this crime is death. We are still searching for his accomplice. Anyone found harboring the boy is guilty of conspiracy, and will be executed as a traitor. Let this serve as a warning to your people."
"You have let your fear of magic turn to hate." The man called to the king.
"I can't watch this." Morgana said, shutting her window and walking over to the small group. She huddled in on Merylin's right, mirroring Gwen's position. Each girl had their arms wrapped around the boy as the drums started to come to a halt. Their grip tightened.
The boy had tears streaming down his face as Merylin heard him yell in her mind. A shatter rang through the room. Morgana's main vanity was cracked from top to bottom.
Mordred buried himself further into Merylin's chest, much like a child would seek their mother for comfort.
"He's all I had." Mordred whispered, barely loud enough for the girl's to hear. "Our group is small. He raised me as his own." Morgana and Morgana looked at each other. They had their fair share of being fatherless. "Does the hurting ever stop?"
"Eventually." The girls whispered.
As Merylin ate dinner with Gaius, she asked about the Druids.
"Very little. They're very secretive people, especially now that they are being hunted by Uther." He paused in his eating. "Please tell me you haven't gotten yourself messed up in this." Merylin looked down at her plate. "Tell me."
"I couldn't help it!" She groaned. "I heard him calling out. He was no where to be seen, but I could hear him, like he was in my mind."
"Yes, I've heard of this ability. The Druid look for children with such gifts to serve as apprentices. While searching for this boy, you must be especially careful otherwise, it'll be your head on the chopping block."
"I'm always careful. You know me." She smiled.
"Merylin, unfortunately, I do."
Merylin spent the night in Morgana's chambers to care for the boy.
"Has he said anything at all since I left?" Merylin asked, setting up a cot. Morgana shook her head. "You know, er, for a moment there, I-I thought you were going to hand us over."
"I'm glad you have so much faith in me, Merylin." Morgana chuckled.
"No, no, sorry." She stuttered. "What I meant was that you're the king's ward. You're taking a huge risk helping the boy."
"I wouldn't see such an innocent child executed." Morgana handed her some blankets. "What harm has he ever done to anyone? So, he may have magic. Does that really make him guilty? No," she snapped her pillow on the bed, "he's wrong!"
"Do you really believe that?" Merylin asked, carefull picking up the boy and placing him on the cot.
"What if magic isn't something you choose? What if it chooses you?" Merylin smiled at her. "Why are you looking at me like that?"
"Why are you helping him?"
"Spur of the moment decision." Merylin sighed. "What do you think we should do with him? He can't stay here. He'll be in danger."
"We'll get him back to his people." Morgana decided. "We have to find a way."
"We'll work on that in the morning." Merylin laid down next to the boy. "Good night, Morgana."
"Good night, Merylin."
The following morning, Merylin felt like she was on fire. Mordred was sweating and panting next to her.
"Morgana!" She threw her pillow at the other girl, waking her up.
"What?" She shot up, gasping the question. Morgana saw Mordred's state. "Is he alright?"
"He's burning up. I fear his wound may be infected."
"We need to get Gaius before it gets worse."
"Gaius will have my head if we get him involved. I'll treat him."
"Do you know how?"
"No, but I'm a fast learner."
Footsteps echoed the halls before stopping in front of the door. A knock resounded through the room. Repeating yesterday's actions, Merylin took Mordred behind the dressing screen. Morgana followed, but saw Mordred's shoes and threw them at Merylin as she closed the curtain before answering the door.
"Arthur!" She exclaimed, faking surprise. "To what do I owe the pleasure?"
"Don't get excited. It's not a social call." He stated. "Father has me looking for the Druid boy. I'm afraid I'm going to have to search your chambers."
"You're not searching my chambers." She objected. "I'm not having you mess up my things."
"Don't take it personally. I have to search the entire castle. Only a few minutes." Mordred let out a small groan of pain. "What was that?"
Merylin imitated the groan and stuck her hand out of the curtain.
"Morgana, please hand me the bucket." She said with a fake tone of sickness.
"Merylin?" Arthur asked. "What are you doing here?"
"Don't!" Morgana said as he approached the curtain. "She's been feeling ill for the past couple of days." She picked up the bucket and put it in Merylin's hand. Merylin faked puking into the bucket. "She's been having some lady problems. She'll be fine."
Arthur nodded his head and left the room. Merylin opened the curtain and gave Morgana a strange look.
"Lady problems?" She asked.
After a fake check-up from Gaius, Merylin returned to Morgana's chambers.
"What took you so long?" Morgana demanded.
"You try telling Gaius to shut up." She responded, dropping down next to Mordred.
"Are you sure you know what you're doing?" Merylin shrugged. "Great."
"I'm doing my best."
"Thank you, Emrys." Mordred spoke into her mind as Morgana left her to get water.
"Emrys? Why do you call me that?" She thought back.
"Among my people, that is your name."
"You know who I am?" She asked in shock, but he didn't answer.
Later that night, Merylin headed down to see the Dragon.
"Hello?" She called. The Dragon turned the corner, appearing suddenly in front of Merylin and scaring her. "Don't do that! You scared the life out of me."
"The young witch has come to visit me." The Dragon said thoughtfully. "You have not been here in a while. I trust that you have handled the past year well?"
"As well as I could." She mumbled. "I need your help."
"About the Druid boy, no doubt."
"How did you know?"
"Like you, I hear him speak."
"Why does he call me Emrys?" She asked. "He says that it is my name. As far as I know, my name is Merylin. Always has been and always will be." Merylin defended. "Plus, how does he know me? I don't recall meeting any Druids."
"There is much written about you that you have yet to read. But know this," he informed, "you should not protect the boy."
"Why? He has magic. He's just like me."
"You and the boy are as different as day and night. Head my words, Merylin."
"Why should I not protect him?" The Dragon flew off, leaving her more confused than ever. "For one day, just one day, a simple answer would be nice."
Merlin returns to Morgana's room. The King's Ward was standing over the boy, a worried look on her face.
"Are you okay?" She asked.
"He said my name, but he didn't open his mouth." Morgana looked more worried than usual. She sighed and ran her hand through the boy's hair. "He's getting weaker. Whatever you did yesterday, it isn't working. We have to ask Gaius for help." She turned to Merlin, taking her hand. "After all you've done, you can't give up now! Please! He'll die if he doesn't receive the treatment."
Merlin sighed and rubbed her hand.
"Ok. I'll see what I can do."
Merlin spent that night listening to Gaius complain about the search for the Druid boy. The searches are double the distribution route causing an ache in the old man's bones.
"Morgana's hiding the Druid boy in her chambers." Merylin said, fed up with the secrecy.
"When you say 'Morgana,' I assume you are helping her?" Gaius said, a sigh in his voice. Merylin shurgged. "Merylin, you promised me that you wouldn't get involved."
"I know, I'm sorry." The young girl hung her head and picked at her fingers. "I had no choice."
"Every guard in Camelot is searching for this boy, and your harbouring him under their very noses." He threw a scroll at her, half in anger and half in joking.
"Was I just supposed to hand him over to the guards to be executed?" Merylin said, slightly raising her voice. "Gaius, I felt a connection to this boy. Through him, I see the me who arrived a year ago. The me who was alone and scared in a place that could kill me."
"You think you can save this boy?" Gaius faced her, worry and fear on his face. "What happens if you get caught? Who's going to save you?" Merylin looked down at the floor as Gaius walked over to her. "The difference is, Merylin, that your magic is still secret. Though, it is a surprise, considering how careless you are." He pulled her into a hug. "You wouldn't tell me about the boy unless something is wrong. What is it?"
"The boy's hurt." She said in a small voice. "He's really sick. I've tried to treat him, but we need your help."
"Now you want me to risk my neck too?" He sighed. "I wished the boy no harm, but it's too dangerous."
"Then, we'll hand him over to the guards. He'll die untreated anyway." She huffed and started walking into her room. "Think of it this way, what if he was me? Would you leave me to die?"
After Gaius had treated the boy, the girls found themselves in the market as the boy slept. The guards were stopping everyone that walked through the gates with a cart. Merylin cringed as a pitchfork was stabbed into another's hay cart.
"How are we going to get the boy out this way?" Gwen lamented, examining some spools of fabric. "Their checking every stone for him."
"There is another way out of the castle," Merylin started, "through the armory." She smiled, finding the same fabric that made the dress Morgana bought her, before continuing. "It leads to the lower town. I can take the boy out that way."
"It's too dangerous. I'll do it." Morgana stated. Merylin and Gwen look to her as if she was mad. "If you are caught, Uther will execute you on the spot. The boy's my responsibility, so I will smuggle him out of the castle."
"Well, you'll need a key for the door."
"Who has it?"
Merylin tidied Arthur's room as he ate his dinner. She she stopped at his wardrobe, directly behind where the prince was sitting. Using a spell, she levated the keys off of Arthur's belt.
"Is there bread?" He asked. Merylin paniced and had the keys float behind his head every time he turned. "What was that?" He asked, looking at her. She shrugged and gave him a questioning look. "There was a sound."
"I didn't hear anything." She said, hiding a smile as the keys kept floating out of his sight.
"What is that? Can you hear it?" She shook her head. "Are you deaf? It's like a...jangling sound?" Arthur leaves his seat to walk around the room, allowing her to drop the keys into his dinner. "There! There...There was a jangling and a splash."
"Have you been working too hard?"
Merylin arrived at Morgana's as the young ward finished getting dressed in Gwen's clothes. Even though she was not the one bringing the boy, Merylin was nervous. She smiled at Morgana as she passed to get the boy.
"We're getting you out of Camelot." Morgana smiled, taking his hand. "I won't let anything bad happen to you. I promise."
"You ready?" Merylin asked. He nodded. "Okay, here's the keys. The door is behind the middle shield at the far end of the armoury."
"Thank you, both of you." Morgana said, hugging them both.
"I'll pack you some food and water for the journey." Gwen said. "Be careful."
The two girls left her chambers and went to Gwen's house to prepare anything the duo needs for the journey. It was only a little while later that Gwen and Merylin heard the warning bell.
"They're coming." Merylin said, letting them in. Morgana and Mordred ducked into the dark house, but someone had followed them. "Quick, take off your cloaks. Gwen, Plan A." The duo threw their cloaks into Gwen's closet as Merylin gestured for Mordred to sit in her lap as Morgana sat next to her, reading a book. "Play along."
"Can I help you?" Gwen asked as we opened the door.
"I saw someone enter your house with a young boy. I need to check if it is the Druid boy or not." The guard said.
"No, it's just my friend and her brother. They were just coming over for dinner. Right, Merylin?"
Merylin looked up from the book Morgana was holding, and went to put Mordred on the bed.
"Just a moment Cedric." Merylin whispered to the boy before walking to the door. "Can I help you?"
"You are Prince Arthur's chambermaid, correct?" Merylin nodded. "I do not recall you having a brother."
"He's waiting a week for my older brother to pass through town and pick him up. He was dropped off two days ago."
"Apologies then. Carry on."
The guard left them and carried on with his business, leaving them with a breath of fresh air.
"Now, that it's cleared...Let's get you two out of here." Merylin said.
Waving them off, Gwen asked her a question.
"So, you weren't lying about an older brother?"
Morgana was caught by Arthur, who threw the boy in the dungeon as she was confined to her room. Merylin visited her while delivering her dinner and found her staring out the window.
"Are you okay?" Merylin asked.
"I promised that I wouldn't let anything bad happen." Morgana replied.
"You can't blame yourself. You tried your best."
"It's not enough." She turned to Merylin. "I will not let him die. Can I count on your help?" Merylin nodded, though hesitant. "Thank you."
Later that night, Merylin entered Arthur's chambers to find the royalty having a conversation.
"Sorry, was I interrupting something?" She asked.
"Nothing you need to concern yourself with." Arthur snapped. "Go make yourself useful, and run the laundry."
"I trust her. More than I do anyone else at the moment." Morgana vouched.
"We're going to break the Druid boy out of the dungeons." Arthur said after she re-entered.
"You can't do that." They looked at her. "I mean...it's too dangerous. You've already been caught once, and if the King catches you a second time, he'll never forgive you."
"I'm not worried about myself." Morgana stated.
"Merylin's right [I'm sorry, what?]. When my father finds out the boy's escaped he will suspect you being involved."
"It's suicide." Merylin tried to reason.
"You must go to my father and apologise. Dine with him, he cannot hold you responsible if you're with him when the boy escapes." Arthur plans out, not noticing Merylin's face of 'are-you-kidding?'
"You need me if the plan's to work." Morgana retaliated. "You can't do this on your own."
"Merylin will take your place."
"Merylin will do what now?" The young witch asked.
"I'm going to take the boy out through the burial vaults. There's a tunnel that leads beyond the city walls. Get a horse from the stables and meet me there. There's a grate that covers the entrance to the tunnel. Bring a rope and a grappling hook to pull it off." Merylin started stuttering. "Merylin. Do you understand? If you're not there to meet us, we'll surely be caught." Feeling cornered, she nodded. "Thank you."
For her sanity, she visited the dragon once more, just before she was supposed to leave to meet the others.
"I need to know why you told me not to save the boy." She demanded.
"You seek my counsel and yet you choose to ignore it." The Dragon observed.
"Alright...If the boy lives, you cannont fufill your destiny."
"What does Mordred have to do with my destiny. It's not as if he's going to kill Arthur." The Dragon remained quiet. "He's supposed to kill Arthur?" She shook her head in denial. "No, you can't know that for sure."
"You have it in your power to prevent a great evil."
"There mus be another way! The future isn't set in stone!"
"You must let the boy die, or let Arthur die instead."
The Dragon flew off, leaving her more confused. Like that was any different.
Merylin stood at the window as Gaius flitted about the cabinets. The Dragons words still ringing in her head.
"I assume it's the plight of the Druid boy that's causing your forehead to wrinkle like a lizard's elbow." Gaius said, breaking her out of the thoughts.
"Would you let something terrible happen if it meant you'd stop something worse from happening in the future?" She asked, turning away.
"I suppose it depends on what the circumstances were."
"Hypothetically...One of them's bad, like really bad. And the other, it's...I don't want to think about it."
"It sounds as if you've already made your decision. You can only do what you believe to be right, Merlin. I just hope it doesn't involve you putting yourself in terrible danger."
"For once," Merylin sighed and turned back to him, "you don't have to worry. I'm going to do nothing." The young witch took her leave from the room.
Merlin had been roaming the halls for hours when the warning bell rang out. She was so conflicted on what to do. The Dragon of destiny said to not save the boy, but her heart said to. Which was she to follow?
"I'm scared, Emrys." The boy said in her mind, sounding slightly panickd. "They will kill me. Don't do this! Don't ignore me! I know you can hear me." Her heart tugged at his words causing her to lean against the wall. "I thought you were my friend. We're the same." His last sentence came as a whisper. "I don't want to die."
Her mind was persuaded, and down the hall she went. Running and running until she found herself stopped by the guards. When asked why, she said she saw the Druid boy use magic against some guards on the other side of the castle, that she was scared she was next. The guards took off running, leaving her a clear path.
"Where the hell have you been?" Arthur hissed when she approached.
"Sorry," she rushed, "guards were stopping me at every turn." Mordred narrowed his eyes. "I'm truly sorry, I wish I was here sooner." His eyes softened.
"You can have your pity fest later." Arthur hissed. "Hurry and get the grate off, they're coming!"
Merylin attached the hook and pulled at the grate. It took her effort plus Arthur's force to unhinged the block. The three ran out into the forest where Merylin had a horse waiting. Arthur jumped on as Merylin lifted the boy on to the horse, but not before kissing his head.
"Good luck." She smiled as Arthur started to trot away.
"Goodbye, Emrys." He smiled back, meeting her eyes. "I know that someday we will meet again."
Merylin watched as the two faded into the forest before running to the village. She went to Gwen's house, where she had been pacing the floor. The two girls met with worry-filled eyes before Merylin smiled, signaling a success.
However, as Gwen embraced her, Merylin couldn't help but wonder how a boy who seemed to be a danger to her destiny felt as if he was an aid?
Hey guys! I'm sorry that it's been so long since an update, but with 2017 being the year I graduate high school, I may have more time during the summer. Again, I am so sorry.
Though I do have to thank everyone who has favorited, followed, and left a review on this story. See you whenever! Also, Happy New Year!
Also, I have a tumblr and twitter. Someone PMed me for it cause they made something...Anyway, it's mommikasa on tumblr and LilMissMasque on twitter. If you guys did make something, so not hesitate to message me or tag me. I would LOVE to see it!