Title: Remember Him Fondly…
Character/s: Merlin, Morgana, Uther
Summary: Morgana gets disturbing news and the not so happy couple come to an understanding.
Word Count: 832
Prompt:258. Love Remembers All (Art by Puck)
Author's Notes: Royals #11
Remember Him Fondly…
Morgana walked into the council chambers. “You sent for me?”
Uther looked up from what he was reading. “Morgana, now that Arthur is about to be married. I have been going over several offers that I have had for your hand.”
“No! I will not marry someone that I don’t love.” Morgana stepped forward. “You can’t make me.”
Uther stood up and slammed his fist on the table. “You will do as I say. You are my daughter and my subject.”
Morgana turned to leave. She took a step.
“Guards! Door!” Uther shouted.
The guards shut the door and stood in front of it.
Morgana turned back around. “You can’t make me do this. You wouldn’t dare give me away like some trinket. I am your daughter.”
“You will marry who I say you will marry!” Uther went to her and grabbed her wrist. “You will marry Cenred at the end of the month.”
“Cenred?” Morgana pulled away. “He’s at war with King Thomas. Why would you want me to marry him?”
“To gain peace.” Uther sighed. “Thomas should have done it with his own daughter but he let his pride get in the way.”
“Obviously, you have no problem with that.” Morgana rubbed her wrist.
“Go! Make preparations for your wedding. It will happen regardless of what you want.” Uther waved the guards back and they opened the door.
Morgana ran from the room and ran to her chambers. She wasn’t going to marry Cenred and she had a month to find a way out of it. She needed a plan.
In Ealdor, the sun had just started to set when Arthur held out his hand to Gwen.
“Are you ready for our walk, Guinevere?” Arthur asked when she stared at his hand.
“Yes my lord.” Gwen took his hand then glanced at Merlin. “We need a chaperone.”
“Merlin!” Arthur looked over at his manservant. “We need a chaperone.”
Merlin sighed and stood up. “How far are we walking? I’m exhausted.”
“Just come on and stay behind us.” Arthur raised an eyebrow. “Way behind us.”
“Oh! So you want to talk then.” Merlin grabbed his coat. “I will keep you in sight but stay far enough away so you can have some privacy.”
“Thank you Merlin.” Gwen smiled.
Arthur led Gwen out of the house and out to the road. He offered her his arm and smiled when she took it.
“So tell me about this love of yours. Was he brave and strong?” Arthur asked after they had walked for a few minutes. “I want to know what I’m up against.”
“He is dead my lord. You have only his ghost to compete against.” Gwen glanced back to make sure Merlin was following them.
“A ghost can be as powerful a foe as the man itself.” Arthur frowned. “If he is still in your heart then where will I fit?”
Gwen scowled. “This is not a marriage of our choosing. Why do you want to be in my heart?”
“I find you … beautiful.” Arthur let out a breath. “My parents loved each other. At least that is what I was told. My mother died moment after my birth. My father still remembers her fondly.”
“Lancelot and I were not married.” Gwen shook her head. “It’s not the same.”
“But you will always remember him. He will always be someone you loved.” Arthur glanced back at Merlin.
They had walked deeper into the forest by this time and Arthur wanted to see if Merlin was watching. When Arthur felt sure Merlin was distracted, he pulled Gwen around a tree and kissed her. Arthur pulled back and waited for her to slap him again but she didn’t.
“What was that for?” Gwen put her hands on Arthur’s chest.
“Because you will be my wife and I want to show you what a ghost will never be able to give you.” Arthur didn’t release her. He held her against the tree. “I am alive and he is not. I’m not asking you to forget him. I am asking you to remember him fondly but give our marriage a chance.”
Gwen bit her lip and nodded. “I will. Arthur …”
“Arthur!” Merlin called out. “Where did they go? Arthur!”
Arthur released Gwen and stepped back into the path. “We’re here Merlin.”
Merlin ran to where Arthur was standing. “I’m sorry. I was thinking about Morgana and when I looked up you were both gone.” Merlin glanced at Gwen leaning against the tree. “Is all well, my lady?”
"Yes, all is well. We should be getting back it will be too dark to see soon.” Gwen took a step to Arthur. “Lead the way, my lord.”
Arthur nodded and offered his arm to Gwen. “Come along Merlin. We all need to get some rest. We have some farming to do.”
Merlin chuckled and followed the couple back to his mother’s house. He knew exactly what Arthur and Gwen had been doing against that tree.