Title: A Future Elsewhere
Summary: S1. Hunith has no doubts sending Merlin to Gaius was the right thing to do.
Word Count: 317
Prompt: #243, "looking back"
Hunith has no doubts sending Merlin to Gaius was the right thing to do. Who else can she possibly trust with the most precious thing in her life? Merlin needs the guidance Gaius can provide, and while she can hear Balinor scolding her in the back of her head for sending their son into the belly of the beast, she knows Gaius will fight to protect Merlin to his dying breath. It won’t matter that Merlin is right under Uther’s nose. Uther trusts Gaius, for better or worse.
But that doesn’t stop her from missing him. In the hours that follow Merlin’s jaunty departure, memories consume her.
His first steps. How fragile he’d seemed as he’d tripped over his feet. But then he would pick himself back up and smile so brightly, she’d laugh instead of scold.
The dragons he used to create from smoke. After she’d caught him doing it outside where others could see, she’d taught him to keep those tricks to the privacy of their home. How many hours had they sat in front of the fire as he’d set them flying? Not enough. Because she hadn’t just seen her son growing before her eyes. She’d seen Balinor reflected in his every gesture, in his fascination with a creature he had no idea was so closely tied to his heritage.
His daydreaming. Others in Ealdor criticized Hunith for letting him shirk his responsibilities, but Hunith ignored all of them. She wanted him to see the best of what the world could be, to imagine futures bright with promise. His reality would change soon enough. She refused to be the one to take it away from him.
Sending him to Camelot is just a continuation of that. He has no future in Ealdor. In Camelot, he can reach heights he’s only been able to dream about.
But Hunith will still miss him. Every single day.