I don't own Merlin sadly.

Just a one shot I thought of and had to write it.

Thank you to Cathcer1984 for her beta work you are amazing. xx

Summary: It all started when a small boy at the age of four who was playing on the beach trying to build a sandcastle got more than just knowing how to build one when a blond boy his age came up and introduced himself. AU

Only light malexmale

A four year old boy with jet black hair and large ears, bright blue eyes was sat on his knees, his tongue out trying to concentrate as he quickly turned over his bucket full of sand and patted the bottom twice before lifting it up, the big smile disappearing when what meant to be a sandcastle collapsed.

"Wet it."

The dark haired boy turned to see a boy his age with blond hair standing there looking at his would be sandcastle. "What?"

"Sand needs to be wet."

When the brunet didn't move the small blond boy walked to the sea with his bucket and came back and emptied the bucket of water onto the sand in front of him. "Try now."

The brunet tried again and laughed when his sandcastle stayed up, from the side of him the small boy picked up a little flag and stuck it in the top. "Thank you."

"Welcome. My name is Arthur."

"Merlin." The brunet answered, smiling at the blond boy who smiled back.

Arthur sat on his knees beside Merlin and together both boys started to play and try and make bigger sandcastles until Merlin's mum called them over and let Arthur have food with them. "Where are your parents sweetheart?" Hunith asked.

"Mummy back home, daddy at work. Nanny looks after me but she likes to sleep a lot." Arthur said as pointed to a woman who was asleep in a beach chair, Arthur giggled. "She does that a lot."

Hunith smiled. "Well we will make sure she is awake when we go and in the meantime I can watch you as you both play."

Merlin was seven years old and had headphones on as he held out in front of him a metal detector, he was slowly swinging it back and forth and stopped with a big grin on his face and started to dig when the detector beeped, when he found yet another bottle cap Merlin carried on.

Arthur walked onto the beach with the woman who looked after him when he came to stay with his father. As soon as she sat on the beach chair and got comfortable Arthur ran, he got so far onto the beach and stopped when he saw Hunith. He smiled, that meant Merlin was here somewhere. He had to find him he hadn't seen him since last summer.

He got so far down and saw Merlin not looking where he was going as he was watching where his stick was moving, stopping every now and then to dig only to sigh and drop what he found before carrying on. Arthur took some money out of his pocket and buried it so far and waited as Merlin got closer and closer.

Merlin stopped when his detector beeped and started to dig and cried out when he found money. He stood up and turned towards his mum to shout to her and gasped when he saw his friend. "Arthur!" He cried, hugging his friend who hugged him back.

"I haven't seen you in ages I missed you." Merlin said when he pulled back.

"Me too. I am with father for three weeks and asked him if I could come to beach every day after dinner and he said unless its raining then I can."

"Yay! I will go and ask mum. Come on." Merlin said as his fingers wrapped around Arthur's wrist and pulled him towards his mum.

When Arthur was ten years old he ran onto the beach and stopped when he saw Hunith standing there. "Hello Mrs Emrys. Where is Merlin?"

"Merlin is at home sweetheart, he is poorly."

Arthur's face fell. "Can I see him please?"

"Have you ever had chicken pox?"


Hunith smiled. "Then you are welcome to come. Where is your nanny so we can tell her."

"I don't have her now, father says if it is just beach I play on I am fine, nanny stays at home."

Hunith didn't look best pleased but smiled at Arthur, "come on then love."

"But dad it itches!" Were the first words Arthur heard when he followed Hunith into the house. Arthur couldn't help but look around, this house was a lot smaller than his fathers and he lived alone apart from when nanny stayed over when he was there.

"I'm sorry son but this is for your own good. You promised your mother and me that you wouldn't scratch and what do you do as soon as you are alone?" Arthur heard a mans voice.

Arthur followed Hunith into the kitchen and saw a man crouched down and just managed to see Merlin squirming in the chair in front of him. "Merlin?"

Merlin gasped and looked over his dad's shoulder. "Arthur!" Merlin jumped off the chair that tumbled backwards and ran to Arthur and hugged him tightly before pulling away and turning his back on him. "Scratch my back please. Dad has taped my gloves on so I can't scratch."

"Merlin no. You can't scratch and if I find Arthur helping you he won't come again. I meant it Merlin." Hunith said. Both Merlin and Arthur folded their arms, not looking happy. Of course that soon went when Hunith gave them both a plate of cookies and some drinks where they then spent all afternoon playing Merlin's video games.

The three weeks Arthur had spent at his father's Arthur could count how many times he saw his father on one hand as he spent all the time he could with Merlin. Before Arthur had left he asked if Hunith could write the address down so he could talk to Merlin via letters.

Hunith had smiled and did one even better, not only did she give Arthur their address she wrote down their house number so Arthur could ring and speak to Merlin at anytime. For the first time since meeting Merlin Arthur left for home with a big smile on his face.

When Arthur was fourteen and he arrived at his fathers house and rushed up to the room he stayed in whilst there he quickly unpacked his stuff and changed into his swim wear grabbed a towel and went running downstairs.

"Just a minute."

Arthur stopped at the door and turned to see his father stood there. "Father?"

"Every time you come here you spend more time at the beach than in the house."

"No more than you spending more time at work father." A look from Uther had Arthur drop his head. "Sorry father."

"No no, you are right son. I have taken three weeks off work so I am here to spend time with you son. Anything you want to do. You go to the beach every time you are here, everyday as well, can I come and see what the fuss is about?"

"I told you father I go there and hang out with Merlin."

"That's another thing, you have done nothing but talk about him when you are here. I want to see this Merlin for myself."

"Okay father but let me tell you now. Their house is smaller than your games room."

"They are poor?"

"That doesn't matter to me father, Merlin knows I have money and he doesn't look at me different, he treats me as me. I don't want to lose my best friend if you go how you do."

"I won't son." Uther looked down at himself. "Let me just go and change into something more suitable for the beach and we will go."

When they got to the beach Uther looked around. "Did you say Merlin is normally here by the time you get here?"

"Yeah, he always is I don't unders - oh my god. Dad someone is drowning get help!" Arthur said as he ran to the sea.

"Arthur no! Arthur!" Uther said as he ran after his son who took his top off and ran so far into the sea before diving and swimming to where the person was struggling to keep above the surface, the person had gone under by the time Arthur got there where he then took a deep breath and dived.

Uther went so far into the sea and saw his sons head pop back up. "Son!"

"One more." Arthur called and took a deep breath before diving again.

Uther walked further in until the water was mid thigh and sighed with relief when Arthur came back up holding on to someone as he started to swim back. He walked further in and when he met his son Uther took the other boy in his arms where he then carried him back to the surface.

When they were so far on the beach Uther placed the boy down and watched as his son rushed to his side and started to pound on his chest with both hands how he was taught to back in school, he moved closer and gave him mouth to mouth. "Come on breathe, please!"

All of a sudden the boy on the floor choked and spat out a lot of water and rolled onto his side and started choking. "Oh thank god." Arthur rubbed and patted his back and smiled when the boy looked over his shoulder and smiled at him.

Arthur looked up. "Father, meet Merlin."

"Mr Pendragon." Merlin said, nodding his head.

When Merlin sat up showing he was fine, shaken but fine Arthur hit him on the arm. "Don't you ever do that to me again."

"Do that to you? What about me. I nearly died!"

"I know and would have done as well, Merlin you said on the phone you couldn't swim so why go into the sea?"

"I wanted to learn?"

"Merlin you can't lie to me, you know full well I was going to help you when I came."

"Fine I got chucked in."

"You got what?" Uther asked.

"Bullies on holiday thought it would make their last day all the better if they chucked the boy who couldn't swim into the sea." Merlin looked pleadingly at Arthur. "Please Arthur, don't tell my parents, they won't let me come on here again without one of them with me."


"Arthur please?"

Arthur made the mistake by looking into his best friends eyes. "Okay Merlin."

"Arthur son."

"No father. I am not telling his parents, I can't, Merlin is right if they know they won't let him come here alone again."

"I don't know..."

"I will put in a good word for you with mum when I go back home."


Arthur lowered his voice so only Merlin could hear. "Father misses mother, wants her back but she is a very stubborn woman." He said, making Merlin smile.

At the age of sixteen Arthur walked into his fathers home and came face to face with him. "How is your mother? Did she say anything?"

Arthur sighed. It had been two years and his father still hadn't given up. "She is talking about moving houses father."

"Closer to here?"

"I don't know she didn't say and that is all I know. I am going to get changed and nip round to Merlin's."

"No need he is already here."

Arthur stopped halfway up the stairs. "He is?"

"Yes. He is sixteen now, left school eight weeks ago and I gave him a job."

Arthur frowned at his father. "Doing what?"

"Take a look for yourself. He is in the game room."

Arthur rushed upstairs and burst into the game room and saw Merlin sat on the floor, laptop in front of him, wired up to the telly.


Merlin turned and jumped up and hurried over to Arthur and hugged him.

"Merlin what are you doing here?"

"Your father has a few friends coming around at the weekend to show off all his games and he said if I do this for him he will pay my college funds! Isn't that amazing?"

"What exactly are you doing for him?"

"Playing the games, writing down how they can be won and..."


"Hacking into them to get all the cheats so your dad can win at the weekend."

Arthur opened and closed his mouth several times before looking over his shoulder. "Father!"

"Arthur honestly its fine. I love it. I get to play all these new games and figure out all the cheat codes and in return your father gets what he wants and I get to go to college and study what I want to and not have my parents worry about the costs or me worry about it. All I have to do is do what I am doing now when your father gets a new game."

"So its a win win?"


"Are you nearly done here?"

"Nearly, this is the last one."

Arthur nodded and started to play one of the games Merlin had already done.

Thirty minutes later Merlin had just finished writing down the last bit when Arthur let out a yell making him jump. "Top score." The blond said. "Lets see dad beat that."

Merlin laughed. "You are as bad as each other sometimes."

Arthur frowned. "What are you going to tell your parents about how your college funds are paid for?"

"That's the only thing I don't like."

"What? Telling them?"

"No they already know that Uther is paying for my college funds its what we had to tell them for them to accept it."

"What did you tell them?"

"The incident what happened when I was fourteen."

"Did you tell them you nearly drowned then?"

"No we didn't."

Arthur turned and saw his father stood in the doorway. "I went to Merlin's house for the first time last week. I saw him on the beach last month and offered him this job and wanting to go to college he accepted straight away, he was just worried on how to tell his parents so I told him to leave that to me."

"What did you do."

"I went to his house last week and told his parents that I received a phone call from you telling me on what happened when you were both fourteen, only I switched it, told them that it was you drowning and Merlin saved you and as thanks to 'saving' my son I want to pay for his college funds as I wouldn't have a son today if it wasn't for him."

Arthur frowned and looked at Merlin. "But you can't lie to save your own life."

"I know."

"That's why I said it all and Merlin nodded in the right places."

Arthur smiled. "Thank you father. I will let mother know how helpful you are being." He said, making Merlin laugh.

At the age of eighteen Arthur didn't go to the beach alone. He had brought his girlfriend with him. It seemed weird not seeing Merlin on his first day there but Merlin away at college Arthur still came in the hopes of seeing him.

"You are right Arthur it is a lovely view, just look at that sunset."

Arthur smiled and put his arm around his girlfriend. "It is a gorgeous view Danielle."

Danielle, long dark hair down her back smiled and snuggled up closely to Arthur. "Um Arthur?"


"I am ready to take our relationship to the next level. If you are that is."

"You know I am Danielle as long as you are sure as..." Arthur stopped when someone ran past them, apologising as they did. They ran past quickly but Arthur spotted the tears running down their face and if he didn't see that their voice gave them away when they apologised.

"Merlin?" When he didn't get an answer he pulled away from Danielle.

"Arthur where are you going? Leave him he probably wants to be alone."

"I am not leaving him alone Danielle."

"But Arthur didn't you hear what I said? I said I am ready to have sex with you and you dismiss it?"

"Yes. Sorry Danielle but I need to follow him. Merlin has been my friend all my life. I have know him for fourteen years, I have known you for fourteen weeks."

"Arthur is this how it is going to be? You are all me until you friend Merlin comes? Because if it is then I am going home and you can forget about calling me when you get back."

Arthur sighed. "If I knew this was the real you I wouldn't have asked you out in the first place. Have a safe trip home Danielle." He said and hurried off after Merlin without a backwards glance.

Arthur ran so far down the beach and stopped when he was only a few feet away from Merlin who he heard was sniffing. "Merlin?"

Merlin gasped and quickly wiped his eyes and took a deep breath. "Arthur how are you?"

"Better than you by the looks of it. Merlin what's wrong?"


"What have I always told you about lying?"

"Arthur I came here to watch the sunset as I sometimes do that's all. I have been here a while."

"Merlin it was me you ran past and apologised to."

"It was?"

"Yes. I was with... well it doesn't matter."

"No it does. Who were you with?"

"Girlfriend. We have been dating for a few months, tonight she told me she was ready and that was when you ran past. I saw it was you and had to come after you."

"No Arthur go back to her I am fine."

"I will not. I told her I was coming after you and she said if I did I could forget going back to her, if I knew she was like that I wouldn't have gone with her in the first place. Now enough stalling. Why are you crying?"

"I have had my eye on someone at college for a few weeks now I couldn't believe it when they said yes when I asked them out, we have gone on a few dates and I..."


"He said he could easily fall for me and I told him I could for him only..."

"Yes?" Arthur questioned further.

"I have just seen him kissing someone else." Merlin hastily wiped his eyes. "I am just being stupid really."

"Oh Merlin you are not." Arthur said as he moved forwards and hugged his best friend, as Merlin put his arms around his waist he held Merlin tightly, not aware of kissing the side of his head. "Shh."

Merlin however was aware of what Arthur just did and pulled back and looked at his best friend who frowned. "What?"

"You just kissed me."

"I did?"

"Yes. On my head." When all Arthur did was stare Merlin moved forwards and placed his lips on Arthur's who froze for a few seconds and started to kiss back when Merlin pulled away and stared at him wide eyed. "I'm sorry." He said before running away from Arthur for the second time that night.

The following year Arthur had come to visit Merlin only this time he came with a different female, his mother, his parents had been talking and Uther had been over the moon when Ygraine admitted that she never stopped loving him and decided to move back, Arthur had booked them the first train available and helped his mum pack.

Merlin had watched from his bedroom window and saw Arthur on the beach where they would always meet up but Merlin couldn't find it in himself to do it, he was still mortified by what he did to Arthur the year before, he knew for a while he was gay and found not long after there was only one for him; Arthur.

Knowing Arthur wouldn't see him like that Merlin had looked elsewhere, he couldn't believe he had ruined fourteen years of friendship over a kiss, he still talked to Arthur over the phone and via video but every time Arthur had started to mention that night Merlin had changed the subject for fear Arthur would end their friendship.

When Merlin saw Arthur heading towards the house he opened his bedroom door. "Dad?"

"Yes son?" Came the reply.

"Arthur s coming to the door. I am not in."

"But you are."

"Please dad. I am not here."

A couple of minutes later a knock sounded at the door and Merlin sat on the top stair and listened as his dad greeted Arthur and Arthur telling him how he was now moving in with his father along with his mother and wanted to tell Merlin the good news. He heard his dad tell Arthur he wasn't in and seconds later the door closed and Merlin hurried to the window in his room to see Arthur turn back and look at the house before walking away.

What Merlin didn't see was Arthur see him through the window before he headed back towards the beach, a long thick stick on his hand he had picked out of a nearby garden.

Merlin watched as Arthur went to the beach and started moving about with the stick, going around in circles Merlin stood and watched him until he left the beach, when he did Merlin put his trainers on called out to his dad that he was going out and didn't wait for an answer.

Merlin ran down to the beach and stopped when he reached the spot where they had met for the first time all those years ago, standing back Merlin read what Arthur wrote in the sand. Arthur had wrote his name drawn a love heart underneath it and under the heart had wrote Merlin's name followed by the words 'Forever and for always.'

Merlin turned and bolted to Arthur's house now knowing what Arthur had been trying to tell him all year, what he had stopped him from saying, he convinced himself that he imagined Arthur starting to kiss back that night. How could he have been so stupid! Why couldn't he have just heard Arthur out.

Merlin banged on the door and came face to face with a very happy Uther. "Where is he?" Merlin panted.

"In his room."

Uther hadn't finished the sentence before Merlin ran into the house and past who he guessed was Arthur's mother. "Nice to meet you at last Mrs Pendragon." he said and hurried to Arthur's room.

Arthur was stood looking out of his window as the sun started to set when his door banging open made him jump and turn, a look of surprise on his face when he saw Merlin stood there. "Merlin?"

Merlin hurried forwards. "I love you too." he breathed out before throwing himself on Arthur who caught him and crashed their lips together, smiling when he heard Arthur moan and felt the blond hold him tighter.

"You do?" Arthur asked when they both pulled back for very much needed air.

Merlin smiled. "Forever and for always." he answered.

Arthur laughed and kissed Merlin, using his hands to unbutton his shirt before undoing his own, losing patience he ripped Merlin's shirt open, getting his ripped open by the brunet.

Stepping back Arthur removed the rest of his ruined shirt, watching Merlin do the same before picking his lover up, making his legs go around his waist.

"Is that what you were trying to say to me all year?" Merlin asked between kisses.

"That I love you? What did you think I was trying to say?"

"That you wanted to end our friendship."


"Well I kissed you whilst you were on a night out with your girlfriend. Girlfriend Arthur."

"Merlin I told you then she was no longer my girlfriend after what she said."

"But you were straight Arthur and I kissed you."

"And I started to kiss you back before you pulled away and ran."

"If you was okay with it why didn't you follow me?"

"Because I am stupid, I should have Merlin I know that now but a man just kissed me I had to think, think about what I wanted as I knew I wanted to kiss you back, how I started to feel towards you then I have never felt for a man before and haven't since."

"And you then realised you love me and have been trying to tell me since then?"

"Yes. Can we talk less now?"

Merlin laughed. "Yes." he said joining lips with the blond, moaning when he felt Arthur's tongue thrust into his mouth, and felt himself moving backwards as Arthur was no doubt leading them to the bed.

Merlin held on tight when he felt himself falling back and looked up when he felt Arthur's weight on him.

"Can we Merlin?"

"Can we what?" Merlin whispered back.

"Make love?"

Merlin smiled. "Yes Arthur."

"Well before you do. Ygraine dear under our son on the bed only half naked, the top half thankfully, is Merlin, the friend our son has had since he was four, they kissed last year and from the looks of it have talked and worked it out. Merlin this is Arthur's mother Ygraine."

Merlin blushed. "Nice to meet you Mrs Pendragon, again."

"Nice to meet you Merlin dear. Come on Uther, lets leave them to it."

"You are gorgeous when you blush." Arthur said when the door closed leaving them alone.



"Shut up and kiss me."

When Merlin and Arthur were twenty six they were on the beach, Merlin sat in between his husbands legs his back against the blond's chest, both of them watching their four year old daughter Sally playing so far in front of them, trying to build a sandcastle, they watched as she pulled the bucket away and started to fill the bucket with sand once more to try again.

"She reminds me of her daddy." Arthur whispered into his husband's ear.

Merlin laughed. "She will get th-" Merlin stopped when he saw a boy their daughters age walk up to their daughter.

"Wet the sand." they heard him say.

Arthur and Merlin sat and watched as their daughter wet the sand before trying again, squealing and clapping her hands when it worked. "Thank you." Sally said.

"My name is Tom."

Sally stood up and shook his hand. "Sally." She said before turning to her parents. "Daddy, father I have a new friend!"

The end

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