Harlequin's Slash Fic

Season 5: 06 Man to Man

Title: Season 5: 06 Man to Man
Author: Harlequin
Universe: Merlin
Characters featured: Merlin/Arthur
Category, Word count: PWP; 333 words
Rating: PG13
Summary: Merlin and Arthur wait through the long night before they can ride to rescue Guinevere.
Notes: Part of a series of episode codas that I hope will continue through the fifth season.
Apologies for taking so long to write this one, and for it being so short. This week really got away from me.
Warnings: Spoilers for episode 506! Infidelity! A lamentable lack of sex!

 

 

Man to Man

‘I lost Guinevere once before,’ Arthur said, his face pale and drawn with anticipated grief.

‘You’re not going to lose her,’ Merlin assured him, striding over there. ‘You’re not. We’ll find her, I swear.’ And he offered his right hand as pledge. Arthur took him seriously enough to clasp his forearm in acceptance of the pledge, as if Merlin were a fellow warrior. ‘We’ll bring her home,’ Merlin promised with a small confident smile.

In response there was the faintest pressure from Arthur, the barest pull, but Merlin went with it. He stepped forward, and their arms went round each other, holding on strong around wide shoulders, their chests pressed together, their heads tucked in each against the other’s. And they held on there as if each in need of a moment in which there could be no doubt, no loss, no fear.

‘I appreciate your loyalty,’ Arthur said when they finally parted. His head was still low, but he didn’t seem quite so adrift now. ‘I appreciate your loyalty to the queen.’ A glance acknowledged Merlin and all that was between them. ‘Under the circumstances.’

‘Nonsense,’ Merlin briskly replied. ‘Gwen was my friend a long time before you ever were.’

That earned him about half of a quirked smile and a huff of breath. ‘Nevertheless… I do appreciate it.’

‘Thank you, sire.’

A silent stillness stretched, utterly comfortable. However, eventually Arthur said, ‘I think I’d rather be alone, Merlin, for what’s left of the night.’

‘Of course.’

‘Gaius could probably use your help with Leon and Percival.’

‘Of course,’ Merlin softly repeated. He had no expectations. He stepped in close again, to press a quiet kiss to Arthur’s temple. ‘Try to get some sleep, Arthur. I’ll be back before dawn to help you get ready.’

‘Thank you, Merlin.’ And at the last moment, just as Merlin slipped out the door, the king wished him in a murmur, ‘Goodnight.’

Merlin carried the warmth of that in his heart for a long time after.

Posted in: Merlin, Slash fic

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