Title: Master And Crusader
Sequel to: Master and Knight
Universe: Master And... Series
Disclaimer: Don't own
Summary: Merlin, Arthur, Sir Percival, Sir Elyan and Sir Leon set off on a secret mission to find and claim Excalibur for Mercia and the war. They knew they would come up against powerful magic, but they never suspected the tests would so horribly overwhelm and weaken Merlin. Something else no one saw coming? The move of a desperate mother.
It was imperative that their mission be kept a secret. Just because Joffrey had been discovered as the traitor didn't mean that there weren't other eyes and ears working for their enemy in the castle, and that was why everyone had been told untruths about where the knights and warlock were while they were out on their crusade. Sir Percival and Sir Elyan were supposedly returning to Cenred's kingdom to handle an issue that had cropped up there. Arthur and Sir Leon were supposedly journeying to Caerleon to speak with Gwaine's father. Merlin, according to the rumor, was isolating himself in one of the small villages surrounding the Mercian castle in an effort to strengthen himself by indulging on the pleasures the village could afford him.
All in all, it was a believable plot in the warlock's mind, and he left everything in Lancelot's hands. He worried about the Queen, about her physical weakness with the pregnancy, but Bayard had married her for a reason, and he knew that Queen Morgana would step up when her kingdom needed it the most. Plus, his magic within her would help him know if she was in trouble and thus he'd be able to help her somewhat, even if not in person, much like how he helped Mordred.
Sitting astride his horse, Merlin and the four knights were all dressed in normal attire, trying to blend in and not bring any attention to themselves. They rode through the woods, heading towards the first marker stone on the map Merlin had enchanted. If they were to find Excalibur and claim it for theirs, they would have to go through certain tests, and it was why he'd brought the knights along. Not only would magic be tested, but physical strengths as well, and he knew that while he could hold his own in physical combat, these other knights were versed it in.
"I hope my sister is safe at the castle." Sir Elyan, Guinevere's brother, sighed. "With her position of trust with the Queen I worry she will be targeted."
"Your sister might be timid in speech, but I have seen her hold her own with a sword." Sir Leon spoke. "She will be fine."
Sir Elyan nodded slowly.
Sir Percival cleared his throat. "Is she spoken for? Your sister?"
Arthur sent Merlin a highly amused look, apparently not at all surprised at this question.
Sir Elyan frowned at his companion. "None have ever been brave enough to come to me to request the right to be my sister's suitor."
Sir Percival nodded as he thought that over. "Should we survive this, I shall come to you with my request."
Sir Elyan's lips parted, apparently quite shocked that Sir Percival hadn't heard the warning in his voice. "I do not think that-."
"Come now, Elyan," Percival interrupted with a grin. "I am fond of your sister. She is a rare flower in bloom that many do not appreciate because she is overshadowed by the Queen. But she is ever so lovely and has so kind a heart."
Sir Elyan closed his mouth and eyed Sir Percival. "I will not let some knight trifle with my sister's heart."
Sir Percival appeared insulted. "I would treasure her heart."
Sir Leon sighed. "Really now, Elyan, leave him be. Have you not learnt your lesson? The last time you tried to scare someone away from Guinevere she punched you."
Sir Elyan flinched and brought his hand to his chin before he slanted his eyes back in Percival's direction. "If we survive, we will talk this over."
Sir Percival's grin was large. "I agree to your terms."
Arthur smirked as he urged his horse closer to Merlin's. "Ten gold pieces say that he ends up marrying her. He's truly besotted."
Merlin looked behind them at the glowing Sir Percival, and chuckled before he returned his gaze to the map in his hands. "I am not a betting man." He frowned when the first marker stone indicated on the map began to glow red, unlike the others, which glowed gold. "We will soon be upon the first marker stone. Perhaps by tomorrow morning."
Arthur leaned over enough to eye the map, before he took in a deep breath. "Any idea as to what we are to expect once we get there?"
"The riddles and clues left by those who hid the Dragon Blade are in forms of rhymes and never clear." Merlin frowned with a shake of his head. "But I do know that magic will be important in each test. Just not the central puzzle for them all."
Arthur licked his lips. "I suppose it is good that we will have to camp before we reach the first marker stone." His gaze flittered to Merlin before it went to stare ahead of him. "That way you will have time to... recharge."
Merlin smirked at that and nodded. "I suppose you are correct."
The rest of the trip, until they made camp, was done so in silence.
"Merlin..." Arthur groaned, pressed face-first into a tree some distance from the camp.
The warlock pressed hungry kisses up the prince's shoulders as his arms encircled the boy and stroked his hard, weeping cock. "Yes, Little Prince?" His magic lavished that body with warm, golden attention, leaving no part of Arthur without caress. Even the magic deep inside of him was working, vibrating, twisting deep within to reach places not even Merlin's cock would be able to.
Sweat dripped down the side of Arthur's face as his lips parted in a cry when Merlin's hand twisted in that way he knew drove the boy insane. "What... are you... waiting... for?"
Merlin's magic pierced deep inside.
Arthur let out a strangled sound as his grip on the tree tightened. "M-Merlin!"
"Good things comes to those who wait," Merlin teased as he sucked on the skin of Arthur's neck, sure to leave a mark and relishing in the annoyance he knew the prince would display when he figured out later what had been done. "Be patient." His hand released its grip on Arthur's cock but his magic encircled it visibly like a golden, moving glove, which had Arthur letting out a half-choked whimper.
"D-do not-I am going to-!" Arthur was unable to complete his sentences, his voice strained and his eyes wide and wild as he craned his neck as far as he could to look back at Merlin. "I-I want-."
"What do you want?" Merlin pressed himself against the boy he'd grabbed by the hips, his long cock steel as it pressed against the small of the prince's back.
"Oh gods..." Arthur groaned, his voice thick and low as he rubbed his ass against the warlock. "Give me your cock, Merlin. I want-I won't cum-I want you inside of me!"
His words went straight Merlin's cock, and the warlock groaned as his body reacted. His manhood twitched painfully and precum gathered at the tip. His hips gave an instinctive thrust against Arthur's back, and both of them groaned at the feeling of their skin sliding against each other.
Gathering himself in his hand, Merlin aimed his cock against the willing, twitching hole, and yet instead of pushing in he trailed his head teasingly around the rim.
"You good for nothing-!" Arthur's voice hitched when the head slipped in only to slip out once more. "I am going to kill you!"
"You want my cock so badly it makes me burn," Merlin whispered heatedly into the prince's ear as he lined himself up against that hole again. "You make me want to never stop fucking you. To live deep inside of you, to spend the rest of my days hilt deep and thrusting."
"Merlin." That voice was agonized.
"You would like that." Merlin's lips and tongue teased his ear. "You are imagining it right now. Imagining all the places, the situations, and you are dripping at the idea." His laugh was low and pleased as his teeth gained purchase on the outer shell of Arthur's ear and he pressed the head of his cock teasingly against the puckered hole hard enough to make Arthur cry out and yet not enough to actually slip deep inside like they both wanted him to. "I love this contrast in you. One part of you is a noble prince, every bit worthy to be king of Camelot... And yet another part of you wants nothing more than to be on your knees, with my cock in your mouth."
"Someone... is full of himself today." And yet when Arthur cried out as Merlin twisted one of his nipples the sound was sharp and begging.
Merlin whispered words as his eyes flashed gold and then he was deep inside of Arthur, who nearly screamed at the sudden invasion. And yet Merlin didn't move once within, he closed his eyes and the vision appeared of Arthur on a throne, with Merlin seated beneath him and fucking him as the court drew on. In the vision no one even seemed to notice or care that the king was being pierced over and over by the warlock's cock or that he cried for more and more as he was thrusted into.
Arthur cried out and his ass tightened around Merlin's cock.
The vision changed to Arthur bent over a stone round table, war plans all around him, his crown eschew on his head as his fingers dug deep into the table's stone. Behind him Merlin pounded into him with a fierceness that wasn't human. It drove him harder and harder against the table, and yet the expression on Arthur's face was pure ecstasy as he begged for more, for Merlin to fuck him harder, for Merlin to fill him with his cum.
Arthur began to move, almost desperately, as he fucked himself on Merlin's cock, the visions visibly driving him wild.
The vision changed once more to a tent in the middle of the night, the preparations for war visibly heard on the other side of the tent. The lights were low, dimmed candlelight, and there were few commodities. The only things inside that tent were a table upon which war plans were piled, and a bed of furs, upon which Merlin lay. Arthur had him straddled and he moved hurriedly, rapidly, sweat dripping down his flushed face as Merlin took his own throbbing cock in hand and began to torture him in time to the thrusts deep inside. Arthur's voice rose, loudly, as he threw his head back. Surely his voice could be heard to all those outside but he didn't care, screaming for Merlin to fuck him harder.
That was nearly undid Merlin, and he growled as he began to suck Arthur's neck once more, leaving all sorts of bruises on that skin. His cock was inflamed by Arthur's imaginings, his demon side desperate to win the war just so he could do exactly what it was that Arthur had envisioned. What was it about Arthur that was so perfect? So amazing? So... So... There was no word to describe Arthur.
"You make me insane," Merlin snarled as he reached around to trails his nails down Arthur's abs.
The prince's ass twitched and closed around him almost painfully as he arched at the pain.
"You make me want to forget about the war, forget about my obligations." It pissed him off sometimes, a lot of the time actually, but Merlin couldn't stop himself, was helpless to restrain his desires around Arthur, and it was only getting worse. "I want to take you away and find a cave, and never leave your body ever again. I want to fuck you on the ground, against the wall, I want you to ride me and watch your cock shake while you do."
Arthur tried to say something but all that came out was a choked whimper.
Finally Merlin began to move as well, to meet Arthur's thrusts with those of his own, and they both groaned at the sensation.
"Yessss...!" Arthur finally managed a word as his grip on the tree tightened to the degree that his knuckles went white.
"This ass in mine." Merlin fucked into Arthur harder and harder with a vengeance as he sucked more and more bruises onto that golden skin. "This neck is mine." He ignored Arthur's garbled attempt at speech that only came out as a wordless cry. "This cock is definitely mine." His hands encircled Arthur's manhood, taking over from the magic, and at the first touch Arthur arched and let out an impassioned cry as he immediately began to cum.
"Merlin!" Arthur fucked himself harder and harder against Merlin as his cock erupted in violent spasms.
"By the gods." Merlin pressed his forehead hard into the shorter boy's shoulder as the feeling of Arthur's cock spasming around him forced his own orgasm from him violently and unexpectedly. He managed maybe two more thrusts before he was buried deep inside of the blonde and filled him with his cum.
Arthur panted, clearly out of breath, before he lowered his hand to the one Merlin had on his cock, which was still semi-hard. "I want-."
Merlin smiled into the boy's back as Arthur's hand covered his and began to manipulate him into moving over his cock once more, bringing it to full-mast in enviable time. "You are such a naughty boy, my Little Prince." He pressed a kiss to Arthur's shoulder as his own cock grew within the younger boy. "So wanton." He kissed his way up that abused neck. "My eager little slut."
Arthur's cock twitched in his hand and the boy let out a whimper.
"I love how much you love my cock," Merlin whispered heatedly in the boy's ear. "I love those looks you give me when you think no one's looking. Those looks that tell me how much you want me back inside of you and you are frustrated that others are around." His chuckle was dark and sinister. "And how jealous you get. It intoxicates me."
"You... You really are full of yourself today." And yet Arthur's voice was tinged with amusement and tenderness as he leaned back against Merlin. "I think... I think the real slut here is you. I am not the one who... slept with half of Albion."
Merlin grinned. "True."
Some of Arthur's amusement disappeared.
"But when I am with you I see no other."
Arthur's eyes closed and his lips parted in a whimper as his cock throbbed harder and harder. "Yes... Well... You are mine."
Merlin's grin turned into a smirk as he shifted his hips and hit Arthur deep inside in that place that...
"Merlin!" Arthur was cumming again, and this time Merlin could control himself, could fuck the blonde through the orgasm and torture him further, causing the blonde to shiver and twitch and be so utterly fuckable Merlin was truly worried he'd kill the boy by never ever pulling out ever again.
Suddenly his magic picked up something, and Merlin frowned as he pulled out of Arthur and looked around.
The blonde leaned hard against the tree and shivered from aftershocks, and didn't seem to notice Merlin at all.
The warlock looked around him, alert and wary yet not sure what he'd sensed or if it truly had been a threat. But whatever it was, it'd triggered an awareness from his magic and with that he was able to calm himself despite the fact that he had yet to satiate himself completely with Arthur. "We should go back to camp."
"What, have I tired you out, old man?"
Merlin's lips curled in a smirk as he turned to Arthur. "Who are you calling old man?"
"You," the cheeky brat smirked as he turned to face Merlin and leaned back against the tree, his abs scratched from Merlin's previous ministrations.
The warlock moved on instinct and ran his hand over the deep scratches, healing them immediately.
At the mere touch Arthur visibly began to harden again.
Merlin watched in fascination before he cleared his throat and looked away as he reached for his trousers.
"Wait..." Arthur's face shifted oddly. "You were not actually serious when you meant we should return, were you?"
"I was very serious." Merlin kept his magic alert and yet still couldn't sense anything around them. "The others will be wondering where we are."
"The others know where we are and what we're doing." Arthur's face hardened. "You are never satiated this quickly." His expression darkened. "You did not even find completion that last time, only I did!"
"I have spoiled you too much," Merlin teased. "You are too used to being played with nonstop until morning." He picked up Arthur's clothes and threw them to him. "You need your rest for tomorrow, Little Prince, and so do I."
Arthur clutched as his clothes, eyes narrowed. "You also need to recharge."
"I am charged enough."
"That could not have been enough." Arthur's eyes were narrowed.
There was that awareness again, and it was gone just as quickly as it'd appeared.
Merlin narrowed his eyes on the scenery. "Put your clothes on, Arthur." It could be nothing, but he didn't want to be caught unawares. Plus, it was safer at camp, and if there was something out there, it was merely content with watching, at least for now.
Because he was so intent on the surroundings, he failed to see Arthur's dark look as he yanked on his clothes.
Arthur was acting oddly.
Merlin wasn't exactly sure what was off about Arthur, but since they'd returned to the camp that night the blonde had been… off.
But right now wasn't time to think about Arthur and his moods, they were on a crusade and had just arrived at the first marker stone. They stood around the tree, which truly looked like an ordinary tree to the human eye, and yet Merlin could see what the others couldn't. He could see the crystals emerging from the bark, could feel the power that radiated around this tree. He took in a deep breath and turned to the others. "This is it."
Sir Elyan unsheathed his sword. "We are ready."
Merlin's gaze went to Arthur before he turned and faced the tree, palm raised towards it as he began to chant the spell for the first marker stone. His eyes flashed gold and he could feel the power meet his own before a gasp escaped the men behind him and he had a feeling they could see the tree as it really was now. But he didn't allow that to distract him as he felt the shift and suddenly a door appeared in the bark of the large tree. He let a sigh escape as he lowered his hands. "This is it. The first test."
Sir Percival nodded. "Lead on, Grand Court Sorcerer."
Amused by Percival for some reason, Merlin shook his head and opened the door before he stepped inside the darkness. He could feel the others enter behind him, and then the door shut on them, bathing them in unseeing black.
"Is that supposed to happen?" That was from Sir Leon.
Eyes flashing gold, Merlin sent up witchlights around them, lighting the room to show that they were actually within a medium-sized wooden room. Right ahead of them was a wooden pedestal with a large wooden carving of a book on it.
Merlin's eyes narrowed as he moved to the book and noticed the hand prints carved into each page of the book. "These are two right hands. Means two different people." He placed his hand down on one.
Arthur put his hand down on the other.
The prince cleared his throat and pulled away.
Sir Elyan sheathed his sword and came towards them. "Let me try." Just like with Arthur, nothing happened.
Sir Leon came forwards and pulled off his glove, staring down at the carved handprint before placing his on it….
…and suddenly they were not in the wooden room anymore.
Merlin and Leon stared around to find themselves in a vast forest.
Sir Leon quickly put back on his glove and raised his sword high. "Where are the others?"
"They were left behind." Merlin turned to Leon. "This test has chosen you."
Sir Leon nodded. "I see. So… what is this test?"
"There are words here." Merlin moved towards a tree with carvings in it. "Behold you come with no invite, and trespass in this place, ahead of you awaits a fight, which will decide your fate."
"And here I was worried it would be ominous."
Merlin sent Sir Leon a little smirk before he ran his fingers over the words and gazed down at a path by his feet. "We need to follow this path."
"Right." Sir Leon nodded and started off ahead. "Off to battle then."
Merlin followed at a more sedate pace, eyes narrowed as he tried to feel around them for some sort of magic, but so far he felt nothing and no one.
Suddenly Sir Leon cursed, which was very unlike Sir Leon.
It drew the sorcerer's attention and he hurried forwards before he stopped and cursed as well.
Ahead of them, Sir Elyan awaited.
Merlin looked from one knight to the other.
Sir Leon took in a deep breath before he moved forwards. "What is the meaning of this?"
"How far would you go to be free and continue on your journey?" Sir Elyan asked, eyebrow raised. "Would you kill a companion? Because, tis true, only one warrior will leave here with the warlock, decide whether it is he or you."
"Who are you?" Merlin couldn't feel magic around Sir Elyan, but he was obviously being possessed or manipulated somehow. The fact that Merlin couldn't sense it made him feel extremely vulnerable and useless.
"I have many names, many old, many new, and the same can be said of you." Sir Elyan smirked as he pointed his sword at Merlin. "Merlin. Emrys. Dragonlord. Son of the Queen. All of them who you are and who you have been."
"What's one of your names then since you know mine so well?" Merlin narrowed his eyes.
Sir Elyan merely smirked before he twisted and threw a dagger at Sir Leon, who barely managed to swing his sword and disrupt its trajectory in time. "Decide young warrior, yourself or your friend, here at this junction, one life will end." And with that Sir Elyan yelled as he attacked Sir Leon.
Merlin raised his palm and yet the second he tried to use magic it was as if someone were choking him. He was blinded by the pain and it drove him to his knees. Images flashed through his mind, all of them too fast for him to truly focus on any of them, and yet they were burned in his mind nonetheless. He fell to his knees as the air constricted in his throat, and for a moment he truly believed that he was going to die.
Merlin? Mordred's voice was worried in his mind. Merlin, what is it? What is happening to you?
The warlock clutched at his throat, mouth opening and closing, and yet he couldn't let anything out. The world seemed to spin around him dizzyingly, and spots danced before his eyes as he felt his strength begin to slip away.
Right when he was about to black out he felt the rush, he felt the presence, felt Mordred. It was as if the boy was wrapping his arms around Merlin, and as he did so suddenly the pain and suffocating agony stopped, and Merlin was able to gasp in deep gulps of air. Mordred's presence disappeared immediately, the link severed for now. Merlin coughed as he pushed up from the ground and turned his gaze towards the fighters to see that Sir Leon had Sir Elyan pinned to the ground, his sword to his throat.
Sir Elyan laughed. "You have chosen."
"Yes." Sir Leon nodded. "I choose the both of us."
Sir Elyan tilted his head to the side. "That was not an option."
"I am making it an option." Sir Leon glared at him. "Sir Elyan and I both will live. Neither of us will have his life forfeit here."
"Only one can leave with the sorcerer." Sir Elyan smirked. "Choose."
Sir Leon turned to look at Merlin, the conflict visible on his face, before it hardened and he turned to Sir Elyan. "We'll both stay. Once the Grand Court Sorcerer has the sword he'll be able to overcome this magic of yours."
Merlin's eyes widened, not so sure about that. He'd nearly died two seconds ago. Whatever the magic that ruled over this, it was powerful.
"Maybe that is true, tis a risk you must take, but as I already said, it is your decision to make." Sir Elyan grinned before he turned his gaze on Merlin. "Your acceptance will be needed, and a penalty you should expect, it shall be collected at the marker stone you enter next."
Merlin stared at Sir Leon and knew that this was the only way to give them all a fighting chance of getting out of there alive. "I accept."
Relief speared through Sir Leon's face as he dropped his weapon and sat down.
Sir Elyan tilted his head. "Surprising empathy towards these humans I've seen, you surprise me, Son of the Queen." And with that, Sir Elyan's eyes rolled in the back of his head and he collapsed on the ground next to Sir Leon, who reached over and checked for a pulse, nodding to Merlin that it was there.
"I could not choose," Sir Leon whispered in apology.
"You did what was right." Merlin clapped the knight on his shoulder.
"What was the purpose of this test?" Sir Leon asked curiously. "I see no gain in it."
"Me neither," Merlin admitted uneasily. "But there's a greater power working here." He turned his gaze back on the knight. "We will come back for you."
Sir Leon nodded with a small smile. "Please inform Prince Arthur of my regret for not being able to see this through to the end as I promised."
"He will understand, and approve," Merlin assured him.
Leon merely gave him a small smile before he sighed and ran his hand over his face. "What happens now?"
Merlin sighed. "I do not—." Suddenly he wasn't in the woods anymore, he was once more outside of the crystal tree with Arthur and Sir Percival.
"What happened?" Arthur stepped forwards.
"Sir Leon and Sir Elyan—," Sir Percival began.
"They will not join us the rest of the crusade." Merlin took in a deep breath as he relayed what had happened within the forest to the prince and knight before him.
"Will they be safe in there?" Arthur whispered.
"I do not know," Merlin admitted. "But that is why we have to hurry and find the Dragonblade."
"What about this penalty?" Sir Percival wanted to know. "Do you have any idea what it might consist of?"
"No." Merlin shook his head as he hugged himself, a cold chill racing up his spine. "But we have other things to worry about right now."
Sir Percival frowned. "Grand Court Sorcerer, what is that on your hand?"
Confused, Merlin lifted his hand and his eyes widened when he saw the Gebo rune burnt into the back of his palm. "This must be somehow connected to the first marker stone."
"To show that you passed?" Arthur asked warily.
Merlin didn't know, and that made him uneasy.
"Why did I not feel it?"
Merlin looked up from his marked hand to Arthur as they sat by the fire. Sir Percival had gone to bathe in a nearby lake and had given them some privacy. "Feel what?"
"What was happening to you?" Arthur stared into the fire, his expression highly disturbed. "You could have been killed in there, Merlin, and I had no idea."
"Why would you have known? How could you have known?" Merlin didn't understand what was going on here.
"Mordred knew." A muscle jumped in Arthur's cheek. "He helped you."
Ahhhhh. Merlin was starting to see the problem now. "Mordred has my magic in him, that has opened up a bond and connection between us."
"I have your magic inside of me."
"Yes, but Arthur, you are not magic."
Arthur flinched as if hit, a shadow passing over his features as he continued to stare into the flames. "I see."
Now Merlin was lost once more. He had a feeling that his explanation had angered the boy but he didn't know why exactly that could be considering that he was merely stating what they all knew. Mordred was a druid, he had magic in his veins, Arthur did not. Or, well, Arthur was not a magic user.
Sir Percival could be heard humming as he drew nearer, which meant they couldn't talk about this further. That didn't mean that Merlin didn't think about it the whole night though. He was silent and barely listened to the conversation Arthur had with his Escetian friend. No, Merlin merely watched Arthur and tried to understand exactly what was wrong.
"You are far from empowered enough to face these tasks." The Succubus Queen emerged from the woods, dressed in gossamer dress which clung to her body and was nearly translucent in the moonlight as she sat down next to Merlin by the fire. "The first task was the simplest, and you were brought to your knees."
Unlike usual, Merlin didn't tell her to leave, he didn't ignore her either. Instead he turned his blues on her. "Who was that?"
She smiled brightly at him before she cleared her throat and answered. "You will meet him again before this crusade of yours is over, and your questions will be answered."
He nodded and turned his gaze to the fire once more.
"I am serious when I tell you that you need to feed." She reached out and brushed his dark bangs from his face. "You need to be at your optimum if you expect to get out of these trials alive."
"I have never felt so… vulnerable… and powerless… as I did today." Merlin clenched his fists tightly. "I suppose I have gotten used to being one of the most powerful beings alive. It was a slap in the face to realize just how much stronger this person's magic was compared to mine."
"You were weak." She raised an eyebrow. "You are still weak." She pursed her lips. "You need to feed more than you have in a very long time. The Prince might give you power, but he alone can't give you all that you need for this mission and you know it. And even if you took it all from him it would likely kill him, it would definitely leave him too weak to perform his task in this venture of yours. You know what you have to do."
"I do know, but I will not do it."
"Because of his insecurities?" She glared at him.
"Because I want to be faithful." Merlin turned to face her. "I know that the idea is preposterous to you, but I want only him."
A muscle jumped in her cheek before she looked away. "I understand better than you could ever believe." She raised her chin. "When I was with your father, I was only with your father." She took in a deep breath. "I know you do not believe me capable of it, that you think I am merely some sort of monster, but I did love your father."
Merlin looked away. "I do not want to talk about this."
"As you wish." She sighed and leaned forwards, a near glow radiating from her skin and hair in the moonlight. "But Merlin, you need to feed. I understand that you want to be faithful to the prince, but if you want to own the Dragonblade you will need more power than you have right now." She let out a sigh. "The druid boy saved you today. He is much more suitable for you than the prince."
"I thought you liked Arthur."
"I do. He is a tasty dish." She grinned and showed teeth before she sighed and shook her head. "But I know what you will come up against, and I am afraid that he will be your death." She sighed and stood. "But you will not listen to me, you never do." Sadness clouded her features before she turned and disappeared back into the woods.
Merlin watched her in silence and realized that this was the first conversation he'd had with her that hadn't been completely hostile.