Title: In the Dark part 4
Character/s: Merlin, Arthur
Summary: Film guy liked Star Wars. So did Merlin. The beginnings of a beautiful if confusing friendship.
Word Count: 710
Camelot_drabble Prompt: Enter Stage Left
Author's Notes: I am wondering when I’m going to run out of films.
Disclaimer: Merlin characters are the property of Shine and BBC. No profit is being made, and no copyright infringement is intended.
Wet Dreams guy was back, in the far corner and without the gorgeous woman he’d been with last week. Not that Merlin would go over and introduce himself. The man was way out of Merlin’s league.
Besides, he was waiting for film guy to show up, or at least sit behind him and make snarky remarks. In a way, it was becoming comfortable, friendly without any expectations, and Merlin could just relax and enjoy the conversation. He didn’t need to put on a mask and try and be someone he wasn’t just to get laid. Although he wouldn’t have minded getting laid. Very much not minded but it wasn’t happening anyway.
So as he sat down and waited for The Rise of Skywalker to begin, he didn’t even look around to see if film guy was hovering. Merlin just sat there munching his popcorn and listening to the first stirring sounds of John William’s score.
He did jump a bit when, later, film guy breathed in his ear, “So do you think Finn and Poe are a thing?”
“Please, of course they are. Although Finn looks like he’s up for a threesome with Rey and Poe.” Merlin gave a little snicker. “The studio can throw other women at them both but yeah, not happening.”
They didn’t say much after that. Merlin could tell film guy was enjoying the film by the way his breathing would speed up, the grunts when Rey would jump into danger, how he choked when Kylo Ren turned back into the good guy, redeemed at last by love.
Of course, Merlin was thrilled that Reylo turned into a thing, even though film guy was muttering about how it never happened. But the intensity of the moment was amplified when film guy put his hand on Merlin’s shoulder and squeezed in sympathy as the scene played out.
Merlin tried not to cry at the end. He’d been waiting for years for Skywalker saga to be complete and now that it was dome, he felt at a bit of a loss.
“I loved it, even with Reylo. And the two suns setting like that.” Film guy sounded a little choked up, too. “I didn’t want it to be over.”
Film guy’s hand was still on Merlin’s shoulder and Merlin reached up and covered it with his own. “Me, either. I know there are tv shows, too, but there’s something about the big screen and sharing the experience.”
Surprisingly, film guy didn’t pull away, just let his hand rest there, warming Merlin. “Sorry, I wasn’t in the mood for conversation. Things have been… difficult at work and I have to go put out some fires in a minute. Not the same as galaxy in peril space opera, but sometimes the drama isn’t that far off.”
Merlin certainly did understand. “Sometimes I think it would be easier to rescue the galaxy. Yeah, flying with a Wookie, there’s always the danger of getting your arm torn off or crushed in a garbage compactor, but at least you wouldn’t have to listen to your boss telling you how his boss is unhappy about things you can’t do anything about.”
Film guy just hummed a bit. “Next week, there’s a National Lampoon retrospective. European Vacation is a classic after all.”
“I prefer the original. I don’t think anything can top driving across the country with the dead aunt tied to the car roof.” Merlin said.
“Leaving her by the back door with a note?” Film guy chuckled.
Merlin laughed. “They probably figured she wouldn’t make a good hood ornament. At least they left a note.”
“A note makes everything better?” Merlin could hear the smile in film guy’s voice.
“Notes are the getting-out-of-jail card for every movie.” Merlin agreed. “Even if it’s a virtual one like Princess Leia saying, ‘Help Me Obi-Wan Kenobi, you’re my only hope’.”
With that, film guy slid his hand away from Merlin’s shoulder. “A call to adventure. Hopefully, I’ll be able to answer it someday. See you next week?”
“I’ll be here.” He didn’t ask about afterwards. There really wasn’t any reason to. Film guy had already made that clear.
Merlin didn’t turn around, either. But sharing the moment was good enough.
He couldn’t wait until next week.