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Master And Knight 3/3 
21st-Jul-2013 05:11 pm
merlin/arthur---gaze and heart
Master And Knight w Simon morgana with hand

Title: Master And Knight
Universe: Master And Series
Fandom: Merlin
Pairing: Merlin/Arthur
Rating: M
Disclaimer: Don't own
Summary: King Simon's (and through him Northumbria's) alliance with Mercia might add numbers that they desperately need, but his past with Merlin and his conditions for the alliance could prove problems for Merlin's and Arthur's future. There's also the issue of a traitor to address. And what is it that Merlin has been trying to find for Bayard all this time?



Emrys…

Merlin turned in bed, groaning, as images disturbed his rest.

Emrys help…

Mordred was chained, magical symbols on the steel keeping him bound, being dragged behind a horse. Men in Camelot red were escorting him.

Emrys, I need you…

Merlin sent more magic towards the young druid through their bond, watching as the shackles around Mordred's wrists glowed gold before exploding.

Immediately Mordred flung his hands out, using the added power Merlin was giving him to snap every single of the mens necks with a twist of his wrist. The druid collapsed to his knees on the ground, obviously spent from having channeled Merlin's magic, and from the draining qualities the shackles had had.

In his bed, Merlin groaned, kicking at the blankets in his unease.

Arthur awoke, frowning at the sleeping wizard. "Merlin?"

Mordred slowly got to his feet before smiling. Thank you, Emrys.

Be careful Mordred… I worry about you and so does the Queen…

He took in a deep breath. I miss you, Emrys…

And with that he raced into the woods.

Merlin shot up in the bed, gasping. "Mordred!"

Arthur sat up, frowning. "You were dreaming of my brother."

"Not a dream." Disoriented, Merlin covered his face with his hands, the images still fresh in his mind. "The magic I've placed inside of him connects us whenever he's in danger."

Arthur was silent for a moment, licking his lips. "I see."

"He'd been captured so he reached out to me." Merlin turned so that his feet were swung off the bed and on the cold ground, the wizard hunched over as he breathed in. "I sent him enough of a jolt of my magic to free himself. He's fine now." He ran a hand over his face. "He needs to take better care of himself."

"You two-you are close."

Merlin raised an eyebrow at that, turning his head to look at Arthur. "I know that this isn't what you want to hear, but I was not sleeping with him merely to annoy you, Arthur. I care deeply for him. He has a good heart." He reached out and cupped Arthur's cheek with his hand, sighing when he saw surprising insecurity pass Arthur's face, remembering all too late what Simon had said to Arthur concerning Mordred. "The fact that I care for Mordred does not mean that it is even close to what I feel for you, Arthur. You should know that by now. I cannot quit you, even if it would be the best for both of us." He gave a self-depreciating laugh. "You are my one obsession."

Arthur leaned into Merlin's touch, his blue eyes searching Merlin's features before his lips pulled in a smirk. "Of course I am."

Merlin chuckled, shaking his head at how easily Arthur bounced back. "We need to rest, tomorrow will be a busy day."

Arthur nodded, lowering himself once more. "This time, dream of me."

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"The stupid bitch does not seem to understand the fact that I have more right to that throne than she does." Sir Valiant snarled, speaking amongst him comrades in the tavern. "She might have opened her legs for our late king, but I carry his blood through my veins!"

Normally, should he overhear these sorts of conversations, Merlin would step in and diffuse the situation and the egos, and yet he remained in the shadows listening to the extent of Sir Valiant's rant.

"And who does she have acting as the head Knight of this kingdom? Does she have a Mercian? No." He slammed down his tankard of ale. "She has that pretty boy half brother of hers!"

"Lancelot is the head Knight," one of the knights declared. "Prince Arthur is more of her knight than the kingdom's. It is different."

"I should be the head Knight. Me." Sir Valiant snarled. "And I am growing tired of waiting for our so-called Queen to wise up to this fact."

Pensive, Merlin slipped away into the shadows.

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Morgana's eyes were wide, her skin pale as her lips parted in shock. She read the passage in the tome he'd shown her and then to his notes, going over them over and over again in shock before finally her blue orbs raised to his face. Her lips parted and closed continuously as she tried to find the right words, the Queen bringing her hand to her stomach as her wide eyes stared at Merlin. "Is this-is this real Merlin?"

The sorcerer nodded, still somewhat shocked himself. "It was a secret assignment that King Bayard had entrusted to me in the strictest of confidence before his death."

"Why didn't you tell me?" She whispered, still trying to digest everything.

"I was not sure I would be able to decipher the encryptions," he admitted. "Or find the location. It has been hidden for centuries, and for good reason. It is tremendouslypowerful." He placed his hand on the Queen's shoulder. "This could assure us the victory in the war."

Morgana stared up at him, eyes shinning with tears that would remain unshed as she cleared her throat and blinked them away. "The allied forces march against us as we speak, time is of the essence." She placed her hand on the one he rested on her shoulder. "You must take our best knights and go wherever this is hidden and retrieve it."

"I will not leave this castle while the traitor is still at large." Merlin shook his head. "I must first catch the rat."

"How?" Morgana asked softly.

He gave her a small, reassuring smile. "Just leave that to me."

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To catch a rat one had to lay a trap and entice their prey with cheese or whatever tempted it. Were Merlin sure of whom the traitor was he'd have found it easy to bait the trap, and yet he couldn't discard anyone, not even Arthur. He didn't believe that the boy prince was the traitor, not in the least bit, but to do a thorough job he had to act on his own and trust no one. Time was ticking away, the sorcerer losing precious time to this mission, to catch the vermin infesting their walls. If he wished to journey to find that which he had sought for so long, retrieve it (which wouldn't be an easy feat) and be back before the first swords clashed in war, he would have to discover the traitor very soon and do away with him or her.

"What I am about to say cannot leave this room." Merlin stared at the most respected and important knights of the kingdom congregated in the room, the Queen sitting on the throne, only the most trusted servants in attendance. Simon nor his men were here as there was no way that they could be the traitor considering everything had happened before their arrival. "But tonight the security of the castle must be doubled."

Sir Percival frowned as he leaned forwards. "Why is this?"

Queen Morgana, the only one who knew of the plan, played her part. "We will not go into specifics, Sir Percival, but all we shall say is that tonight Merlin's magic is vulnerable."

Merlin could feel everyone's eyes on him and he refused to meet any of them, even Arthur's knowing how his reactions would be read. "Tonight is a night that I must spend in complete solitude, and due to-." He cleared his throat, letting them all come up with whatever scenario they might to finish that sentence. "The magic in my anchors, in my protections, will be weakened drastically." His expression was grave. "There is no reason to believe that Aurelius Ambrosius or his sorcerer would attack tonight of all nights, I have always managed to keep this night and its effects on me concealed, but should luck not be on our side I want the guards to be doubled." He clenched his hands tightly into fists at his side. "I will not have the Queen fall, as did our King, due to my own inability to protect as I should."

"I knew there were nights in which you isolated yourself in your tower, but I never realized that it was due to some affliction." Lancelot, of course, appeared to be concerned over Merlin's health. "Are you ill?"

Merlin felt a little guilt for not telling Lancelot, but he and the Queen had agreed that only the two of them would know of the plan as it was being implemented. The less amount of people who knew, the less chance that the plan would be discovered by the traitor.

Arthur frowned, silent, blue gaze on Merlin questioningly.

"What is important is the fact that tonight the castle will be vulnerable to an attack." The Queen brought the attention back to the matter at hand. "As he has during these nights, Merlin will be pass the night hours in the tower until the light of dawn."

Sir Valiant stood. "I can no longer merely sit silently. Not when my kingdom is in such peril." He fixed the Queen with a glare. "I am assuming military control and leadership of this kingdom."

Morgana merely eyed him in silence before her lips tilted. "Are you now?"

Her response obviously infuriated him, Sir Valiant's face turning red. "I have a blood right to this throne! I am kin to the late king!"

"My child is the only heir to Bayard's throne, Valiant." Morgana declared without any anger or worry, her gaze on him. "But should you wish to contest my Queenship, should you wish to start a revolt against me in my darkest hour, when my Court Sorcerer is as powerless as a mere mortal to stop you then fine." She stood from her throne, tall and proud, far more regal than Valiant could ever hope to be. "Knights of Mercia, Escetia and those who fled Camelot and sought refuge within these walls, you have heard the challenge issued against me by Sir Valiant. Stand tall, stand proud, and stand next to the monarch you acknowledge."

The command echoed through the room loudly.

For a split second there was no movement whatsoever, and then almost as one Lancelot, Arthur and Percival stood and made their way towards Queen Morgana. Their movement spurred the other Knights into action, and while two of Sir Valiant's closest confidants joined him at his side the rest of the knights joined Queen Morgana at hers, swearing their allegiance to her.

Sir Valiant's face was red with his fury.

"Sir Lancelot," Queen Morgana smirked. "Have Sir Valiant, Sir Hannibal and Sir Mammoth escorted to the dungeons below."

"You wouldn't dare!" Sir Valiant snarled, unsheathing his sword.

Lancelot and the loyal knights unsheathed their swords as well, overwhelmingly outnumbering the three rebels.

"You will regret this." Sir Valiant spewed as he slowly sheathed his sword once again, knowing this wasn't the time.

"No, Sir Valiant," Lancelot sighed as he, Sir Leon and the others took the men's swords from them. "I am afraid that you shall regret it."

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In the dark of the night, amidst the chaos as news spread of Sir Valiant and his accomplices being thrown into the dungeons for trying to usurp the throne, a figure made its way towards the owl tower. The castle was in an uproar, stations left, leaving it easy for one lone person to slip through and make it towards the owls, a tied parchment in hand. The fastest owl was selected, the person shrouded in darkness, pausing when the sound of conversing guards passed outside the door. Once the guards passed the traitor's actions were resumed, tying the parchment to the owl's leg and taking the creature to the window, setting it free after whispering a magical word in its ear. The traitor wasn't magic, Camelot's sorcerer had obviously already spelled this specific owl for this purpose, for communication, and with this one word could it be achieved.

The creature took to the sky to deliver its message, when suddenly a larger, swifter, far more cunning creature swooped down on it, tackling the owl to the ground and ripping the parchment away before taking to the skies and returning to the owlery and perched on the large open window frame.

"Good job, Archimedes." Merlin announced, emerging from the shadows, running his hand over his helper's features.

"Merlin!" The traitor's eyes widened, taking a step back, the door slamming shut behind him as from the shadows Queen Morgana, Sir Percival and Sir Lancelot emerged.

Archimedes ruffled his feathers in obvious pride before reaching out his leg to Merlin, the rolled up parchment between his talons.

The other owl, dazed and confused from the attack and yet unharmed, returned to the owlery, hooting.

Merlin raised his hand towards the creature, removing the spell on it and healing any injury it might have sustained, before turning his gaze to the traitor as the Queen joined Merlin's side. "Tell me, what were you doing here, sending out an owl at this time of night?"

"I-I-." And yet he couldn't find anything he could say that would make what Merlin would find in the parchment less damning.

Merlin read the words aloud for all present. "Mercia is vulnerable. The Grand Court Sorcerer is powerless. The castle is in an uproar due to Sir Valiant's ill attempt at uprising, as was expected. It is ripe for the picking. Send your sorcerer and your assassins now and remember my price."

The Queen's gaze was cold. "What was your price for the life of my unborn child and so many others, Joffrey?"

Joffrey merely sneered at her.

"Do as you wish, in truth I do not care and it is of no importance either way." Morgana turned to Lancelot. "Have Joffrey taken to the dungeons below awaiting execution." Her hardened gaze returned to the young traitor. "We will ride into battle with your head on our spear and show Aurelius Ambrosius and all his men the true price of assuming that Mercia or its allied forces are weak and ready for the picking."

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A part of Arthur was hurt that he hadn't been included in the deception, and yet he could understand why he hadn't been. In fact, Merlin was protecting him by not doing so, because by not including Arthur at all he'd proven the blonde's loyalty to any that might have doubted and suspected him the traitor. Arthur still found it hard to believe thatJoffrey was the traitor though. The boy was around his age and was more spoilt than truly evil, and yet the facts spoke for themselves. He was also not denying anything. In fact, ever since he'd been thrown into the dungeons Joffrey hadn't said a word, merely sneering at everyone.

It would have made more sense though had Sir Valiant been the traitor! But at least he was in the dungeons as well, and that gave Arthur a little dark thrill, thinking about how their circumstances had completely changed from the first time he'd met the brutish knight.

The smile slipped from Arthur's lips though as his gaze rested on Merlin, who was talking to King Simon. Unlike Arthur, who had only managed to reach Merlin's height, King Simon was actually an inch taller, although he was leaner than Arthur, far less muscular, definitely not a warrior-as was Merlin's usual "type". And yet there was a comfortableness between the two of them that unnerved and made unease run through Arthur's veins, especially considering that they had been lovers once upon a time ago.

Merlin patted King Simon's shoulder with a nod before moving away, gaze falling on Arthur and lips pulling in an instinctive smile.

Arthur couldn't help but return it as Merlin arrived at his side.

"Arthur, Merlin," Lancelot motioned for them. "The Queen wishes to speak with you in her chambers."

Arthur sent Merlin a look, the sorcerer not appearing surprised or curious, giving the impression that he'd been expecting this and knew what this was about. The exiled prince didn't question though, merely followed after Lancelot into the Queen's chambers, where he found Sir Leon, Sir Percival and Sir Elyan already there with the Queen. He sent a little look in Merlin's direction as the doors closed behind them, and yet Merlin merely strode towards the Queen, both sets of blue orbs meeting as they nodded to each other.

Merlin took his place next to the Queen, turning to look at the warriors. "What is to be discussed here is not to leave this room." His gaze took in the silent nods before he continued. "Before his death, King Bayard had me researching a way to win the war with Camelot. There was a weapon wrapped in lore and shrouded in myth to the extent that it wasn't known if it truly existed, but I have determined that it is real and have also discovered its location."

"This is why you've been slaving over those books in your tower." Arthur whispered, everything finally making sense.

Merlin nodded. "It is a weapon that could turn the tide in this war."

"Merlin will lead a small group to find, recover, and retrieve the weapon." The Queen eyed them seriously. "He has handpicked you four for the mission." Her gaze went to Lancelot. "Sir Lancelot, you will be remaining in Mercia as you are my right hand and I need you in this time of peril more than ever."

"Of course, my Queen." Sir Lancelot nodded.

"What is this weapon?" Sir Percival asked, frowning.

Morgana turned to Merlin and nodded.

Merlin sighed, stepping forwards. "I speak of the Dragonsword."

Arthur's eyes widened as hushed silence fell over the room of knights at the realization that hit them hard.

Merlin had managed to find the legendary Excalibur.

Comments 
25th-Jul-2013 12:34 pm (UTC)
This was wonderful and I love this series and I am glad you updated
17th-Aug-2013 09:18 am (UTC)
So happy you updated! Hope to read more of this series soon! This is utterly brilliant - I can't wait to see how everything would be resolved. I absolutely love this verse you created.
17th-Aug-2013 10:40 pm (UTC)
I've spent the past two days catching up on this series and am really caught up in how you've been fleshing out the world and building so many elements into it with both growing and conflicting loyalties, palace intrigue, and now a joint quest.

I also really like the way that the Merlin/Arthur relationship has been flipped and yet is still entirely recognizable. I'm really looking forward to seeing where things go from here!
(Deleted comment)
20th-Nov-2013 04:45 am (UTC)
OMG I just found this and I finished everything in the Master and ... Series you have available within three days. This is amazing and I really enjoy reading it. Please please please come back with the next installment because holly shit you can't be so cruel to leave me hanging with nothing to grasps onto but pieces rubble you left behind. That's just not right and it's "immoral" (according the Arthur not me...) I cannot control this word vomit due to the overwhelming load of perfection in this glorious monster you've written.

So yeah... I can't wait for your update and I am so freaking curious about Excalibur and how it's gonna play a role in the war. And words cannot describe how frustrated I am with King Simon.
23rd-Dec-2013 05:45 am (UTC)
I love this epic! I've been reading it non-stop for two days, it's really fantastic. Merlin especially is fascinating to me. I really hope you complete it!
14th-Jan-2014 03:34 pm (UTC)
I love this series and am so glad I decided to re-read it, because I saw the update! :)) It remains fantastic as ever. Thank you.
31st-Aug-2014 04:35 pm (UTC)
This series is amazing! I love it! I couldn't even pause to comment on each part, I read it straight through! I do hope you update soon.
11th-Oct-2014 01:25 am (UTC)
I came back to read this all over again. I'm guessing that it's been abandoned, but I would love to read more if you ever come back to it!
11th-Oct-2014 02:34 am (UTC)
Oh I just read on the other fic that you'll be coming back to this! Huzzah!
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