Character/s: Merlin, Disir
Summary: Merlin goes back to the Disir’s Cave to find out just when Arthur would be returning.
Word Count: 600
Camelot_drabble Prompt: 356 – I’m here
Author's Notes: post finale
Disclaimer: Merlin characters are the property of Shine and BBC. No profit is being made, and no copyright infringement is intended.
The sound reverberated into the cave, hollow and hard, then echoing, turning back towards Merlin in a hundred cold accusations.
Hello, hello, hello….
“I’m here.” The walls were studded with crystals, and he dare not look into their depths or he might never come out of their mesmerizing prison again. He walked further into the cave, frowning into the darkness.
Here, here, here….
Shaking off his growing despair, he shouted past the echoes, “I was told you have a way of bringing Arthur back. I know he’s gone but I can’t…”
He stopped, wiping back tears, taking a shuddering breath as he tried to be strong. Around him, the very air was mocking him.
Can’t, can’t, can’t…
“My magic isn’t strong enough, but I know I can exchange my life for his. The Isle of the Blessed taught me that.” The noise in the cavern was growing, the myriad sounds a cacophony of his desperation as his words twisted around him.
“Show yourself! I’ll give you anything you want, anything at all! Please answer me.”
With a suddenness that should have shocked him and somehow did not, the air stilled, the sound of his own breathing the only thing he heard.
A heartbeat later, from within the darkness, three voices in unison, low and mocking, said, “Anything? And if the price is too high?”
Merlin stepped forward, peering into the void. But there was no movement, no glimmer of life somewhere in its depths. Heart racing, he said, “It will never be too high. Take my life, take my magic, take whatever you need to bring Arthur back.”
Chuckles, cold and cruel in their disdainful sound. “So impatient, Emrys. It has only been a month since Pendragon was accepted into Avalon. Can you not wait a little longer?”
The thought of a single day more without Arthur was too much to bear. Destiny, love, hope were all warring with the despair in his chest.
Half-sobbing, he whispered, “I can’t live without him. He was – is – everything to me. Please, tell me what to do.”
“Do, Emrys, do?” The words were surrounding him, the cave echoing once more as the voices began to fade back into the darkness. “Why nothing, warlock. Your king will be returned to you in due time. Until then, all we ask is that you live.”
Live, live, live….
Such joy in his heart and Merlin could finally breathe again. Arthur would be back, and Merlin would be able to tell Arthur all that he had done for him, would be able to tell Arthur about all the things he’d do for him for the rest of their lives together.
Wanting to dance for the sheer joy of knowing that his wait was nearly over, he turned to go. But then he realized that they hadn’t said when Arthur would return. He needed to know. He’d already lived too many days without Arthur, his destiny, his king, his everything.
Turning back, Merlin said, “When will he return? Will it be a day more? A week? Not a month, surely. Say something. I need… I need to know.”
Know, know, know….
But there was nothing, but the sound of his own voice echoing in the darkness. He waited minutes, hours, shouting for an answer, but there was nothing. The Disir were gone.
Walking out of the cave, unsettled, but still Merlin had hope in his heart. Arthur would be returning someday. They promised he would.
All he had to do was live and Arthur would come back to him.
Merlin just hoped it wouldn’t be too long.