Harlequin's Slash Fic

Season 2: 12 The Next Life

Title: Season 2: 12 The Next Life
Author: Harlequin
Universe: Merlin
Characters featured: Merlin/Arthur
Category, Word count: Ongoing story; this part 923 words
Rating: NC17
Summary: Merlin weeps, and Arthur comforts him.
Notes: Some readers may be glad to know there’s no angst in this one, or at least not between the two young men. Um, and I’m not quite sure how soon the next episode will follow on from this one, so I left the ending a tad ambiguous. The timeframe may need to be adjusted later for a better fit!
Warnings: Season two spoilers.

The Next Life

After he’d freed the Great Dragon, Merlin slowly wound his way up from the caves through the dungeons and the castle’s staircases until he finally reached Arthur’s rooms. The prince was sitting slumped in his chair, waiting for him. Despite his exhaustion and grief, Arthur lifted his head and summoned a small smile. Merlin did not deserve it. He trudged over there as if he had no will of his own any more, and he knelt at Arthur’s feet, lay his head in his master’s lap, and he wept, thinking of Morgana and of Camelot.

Arthur didn’t move, but stroked Merlin’s hair for a while. Eventually he remarked, ‘It’s been a long and rather trying day.’

‘Yes,’ Merlin agreed thickly.

‘You’ve been – Merlin, you’ve been brave and resourceful and – and reliable today.’

‘Thank you, sire,’ he said, feeling the irony once again. Arthur showing rare gratitude, when Merlin not half an hour before had set in motion events that might destroy the kingdom.

‘You don’t know what it means to me, to know I have someone I can rely upon.’

Merlin took a breath. ‘I should think you can rely on almost everyone in Camelot, sire. Any man, woman or child would follow you anywhere. You’re their prince, and they love you.’

Arthur scoffed a little. ‘If only that were true.’ But when Merlin started to argue, Arthur hushed him with a lift of his hand. Then Arthur reached for a linen napkin from amidst the untouched dinner which was spread across the table, and offered it to him. ‘Here. Clean yourself up.’ When Merlin didn’t take it immediately, Arthur dipped it in the jug of water, wrung it out, and wiped Merlin’s face himself with rough care. Then he offered it to Merlin again. ‘I’m not blowing your nose for you.’

‘No, sire,’ he agreed with a huff that was almost a laugh.

Arthur put on a disdainful expression when Merlin was done with that task, and indicated with a gesture that Merlin should just discard the napkin on the stone floor now.

Merlin sat back on his heels, and looked up at his master. ‘Arthur?’

‘Yes?’

‘Are you all right?’

Arthur found that small smile again, and looked at him with a strange hint of fondness. ‘Yes, of course. It’s late now. But tomorrow we must start thinking about how to find Morgause. We can begin with her castle – if it was even hers in the first place – though I suspect the way will be blocked now.’

Merlin sighed, and looked away. ‘I don’t know how much time we’ll have.’ He suspected there would be other things to worry about soon enough, so he began, ‘Before it’s too late, Arthur –’

Even as Arthur was saying, ‘On further reflection, Merlin –’

They both paused, and then Merlin lowered his head a fraction, and prompted, ‘Sire?’

‘Merlin… if, after all, in the next life…’

‘If you need a servant?’ Merlin supplied with a grin – a grin he wouldn’t have thought he’d have in him any more. ‘Maybe it will be a better life than this. Maybe there won’t be any servants.’

Arthur considered him. ‘If I need – a friend, then.’

Merlin stared. It wasn’t a word that the prince used very often at all – about anyone. ‘Yes, Arthur,’ he softly replied. ‘If you need a friend.’

Arthur leaned forward in the chair, and ran his hand over Merlin’s hair again. Shaped his palm to Merlin’s nape. And he murmured, ‘Come to bed.’

For once they undressed each other, making their way slowly over to the bed, pausing as fingers tangled in fastenings, mouths meshed together, feet almost tripped in fallen britches, and hands slid searching within garments, getting ahead of them. Merlin was distracted by removing the last of his own clothes as they finally reached the bed, while Arthur himself turned down the covers. Then the prince was lying back on the cool smooth sheets, and welcoming Merlin into his arms. Merlin lay over him, almost undone by the simple human comfort of skin against skin. ‘Arthur…’ he murmured into their kiss.

‘Merlin…’ And Arthur curled up beneath him, with his knees bent either side of Merlin’s waist, and his ankles hooked together in the small of Merlin’s back. ‘Please.’

‘Oh god… Are you sure?’

Arthur grimaced in frustration. ‘Of course I’m sure, you idiot.’

Merlin almost grinned at the familiar tone of annoyance. But he said, ‘I don’t want to cause you any more pain. Not today.’

‘D’you think I care about a bit of pain? Get on with it, will you?’

‘Yes, sire.’

Merlin took it slow and gentle despite Arthur’s clipped orders which soon became fervent demands before descending into groaning pleas. He stayed close enough over the body below him to kiss Arthur’s mouth, to nuzzle at Arthur’s throat – and when the end finally welled out from deep inside and Merlin instinctively shifted up a little, Arthur followed after him, mouth needy. Merlin slid a hand down in between them, and simply pressed Arthur’s cock hard against Merlin’s own belly, rubbed the ridges of his fingers once up and down the shaft – and Arthur was coming with a cry that Merlin echoed a moment later. And then they held each other there in the warmth.

In Merlin’s dreams that night, the prince murmured, ‘If I need a lover, Merlin…’

And he vowed, ‘I’ll be there, Arthur.’

And all was well between them.

Except that the dream turned to dark nightmare with the clanging of the warning bell.

Posted in: Merlin, Slash fic

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8 responses to “Season 2: 12 The Next Life”

  1. avatar BecsX says:

    Yay! This was fast! YAY! I love this one! I was actually wondering what you would do for this one after the episode.. I couldn’t really think of much so I’m very impressed you managed to write this so amazingly so quickly! :D

    See you next week… for the finale! (*sob*) It’s not looking very good for a happy ending… Is it bad that I’m looking forward to that 14th episode you mentioned last time? *giggles*

    • avatar Harlequin says:

      BecsX – Hurrah! I’m glad you liked this one. :-) Yeah, there didn’t seem to be many options for this ep, and even so I’m hoping the Dragon leaves them be for a night.

      Alas for the end of the season! Yeah, I’m not sure quite what to expect for how the show will leave things. But as long as the boys are together, I’ll be happy – and if the show doesn’t give that to us for some reason, then I will write and write and write until it’s all fixed. My middle name is Destiny, you know! ;-)

  2. avatar Dany says:

    First things first – I almost jumped off from my chair seeing that you’ve updated so soon! I’M SO EXCITED! And I love the summary. Comfort fics/chapters are made of win! *goes to read*

    “If I need – a friend, then.”
    *melts* ♥ Oh, Arthur. Oh.

    That was lovely. You are like Arthur to my Merlin. :D I mean, after todays episode I needed some comforting too and your fic mended my heart. :) All the sweetness and love and caring… I’m close to tears now. Oh, boys, please don’t ever change. *is happy and dreamy and ignores last sentence*

    Thank you so much! *hugs*

    • avatar Harlequin says:

      Dany – Hello there! Thank you for being so happy to see my little fic pop up! :-D You delight me. Aw, I’ll be the Arthur to your Merlin any day. That sounds rather nice, actually! Thank you so much for your comment. It’s lovely to know I helped make you a bit happier… ♥

  3. avatar wesleyoso says:

    that was really great!!
    I was looking for something like this after yesterday’s episode!! Thank you very much for writing!!

  4. These are so intense. I’m not sure what I’m going to do after next week.

    • avatar Harlequin says:

      Notragicmercury – Yeah, the show’s really building to an incredible climax, isn’t it? And then… we have nine months to wait for more. I don’t know… Hopefully we’ll all get busy writing fic! ♥

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