Title: The Battle (Part 2)
Character/s: Sir Belvedere, Merlin, Morgana, Adara, Gaius
Summary: Arthur finds out what happened to Uther and he is angry at Merlin for not telling him.
Warnings: Character Death
Word Count: 942
Prompt: 268. Argument
Author's Notes: Royals 21
The Battle (Part 2)
It was near sunrise when Arthur had come into the citadel just long enough to get something to eat before he returned to the battle. No one told him about Uther while he ate.
Gaius watched as Merlin served Arthur his meal. He was surprised that Arthur had not asked about Uther but then he realized he hadn’t been told.
Gaius waved Merlin over. “Merlin, didn’t you tell him?”
“Not yet.” Merlin glanced over at Arthur. “If I tell him he won’t be able to handle his grief and fight for his life at the same time.”
“This isn’t a good idea, Merlin.” Gaius warned.
“I will accept the consequences. He won’t be angry with me forever…. I think. “ Merlin sighed.
“Merlin!” Arthur waved to him to come along
Merlin followed Arthur back out to the battle. He stayed closer to him than before. Now that Arthur was king, Merlin's job of protecting him was even more important.
It was near midday when Cenred’s men retreated. They had never breached the citadel and had suffered considerable losses. The knight of Camelot chased them into the woods as they retreated.
Merlin dropped the sword he was holding and went to Arthur’s side. “Arthur, are you injured?”
“No. I’m just exhausted.” Arthur sat on a crate that had been used as a barricade. “Where is my father? Did he retire to his chambers last night? I didn't see him on the battlefield this mornng.”
“Arthur….” Merlin took a breath before he continued.
Arthur frowned. It was not like Merlin to be so cautious when he spoke. “Out with it, Merlin!”
“You father fell in battle.” Merlin saw the shock on Arthur’s face and continued. “I chose not to tell you. I didn't want you to be upset while you were in battle. Sire, I feared it would make you reckless.”
Arthur stood up and grabbed Merlin by the shoulder and shook him hard. “It is not for you to decide, Merlin. He is...was my father. I had a right to know. I should have been told!”
Merlin looked down then shoved his hand in his pocket. “He told me to give you this. He said that he loved you.” Merlin held out the seal ring. “Arthur, I thought I was what was best for you.”
Arthur snatched the ring from Merlin’s hand. “You think you know what’s best for me? I am your….. I am your king. It’s not for you to decide.” Arthur released Merlin’s shoulder and looked around. “Where is my father’s body? Where is Uther?”
“Sir Leon and I took him inside. Gaius has kept his body hidden.” Merlin told him. “Arthur, I am so sorry.”
Arthur glared at him then pushed past him into the citadel. He came up to one of the knights. “Sir Belvedere, go to the vaults. Bring my sister and my wife to my chambers. Then I want you to find King Thomas and the prince. Take them to council chambers and tell them to wait for me there.”
“Yes my lord.” Sir Belvedere hurried away to carry out Arthur's instructions.
Arthur headed for the great hall where the wounded were being cared for. He wanted to see his father's body and speak to Gaius.
Morgana had brought bread and milk back from the kitchens with the help of two of the guards the night before. The children were finishing up the last of it when Sir Belvedere arrived.
“My ladies.” The knight bowed. “Princess Guinevere you and the Lady Morgana must come with me. Arthur has requested your presence in his chambers.”
Gwen and Morgana looked at each other and stood up to follow the knight.
“What of King Thomas and Prince Elyan?” Adara asked. “Do you have news of them?”
“I am to bring them to council chambers as soon as i escort the Princess and Lady Morgana to Arthur’s chambers.” Sir Belvedere informed her.
“Then I will come with you as well and accompany them to council chambers.” Adara stood and smoothed out her dress. “I assume the battle is over and we can leave.”
“Yes my lady. Cenred’s men are on the run. The citadel is secure.” Sir Belvedere nodded to the women and children. “They may return to their duties.”
“Return home and get some rest before you go back to your duties.” Morgana nodded and turned to follow the knight.
Adara glanced back at the women and children before she followed the others. She had noticed Uther had not been mentioned in the summons. She wondered if that meant that he was dead. If Uther was dead her fate was unknown. She may still be executed for having magick.
Gaius looked up as Arthur stormed into the great hall. He braced himself when he saw the expression on Arthur’s face.
Arthur came up and gave Gaius a hard look. “Where is my father? Take me to him.”
Gaius nodded. “Of course, Sire.”
Gaius led Arthur to an alcove behind a tapestry. Uther's body lay on the floor covered by a clean sheet. Arthur knelt down and uncovered his father's face.
“Father….” Arthur whispered. Arthur wiped his face and covered Uther back up. “See that his body is prepared for burial.”
“I will prepare him myself, Sire.” Gaius put his hand on Arthur’s shoulder. “He loved you more than anything. He was proud of you.”
Arthur stood up. “Thank you Gaius. I have to go. Morgana doesn't know yet. I have to tell her.”
“If you need anything, Sire….” Gaius patted the young king’s shoulder.
Arthur nodded. “I will ask.”
Arthur turned and rushed off to his chambers.