Title: In the dark – part 8 – Pink Panther
Character/s: Merlin, Arthur
Summary: Sometimes they both needed a good laugh.
Word Count: 934
Camelot_drabble Prompt: 413- alarm
Author's Notes: Pink Panther 1963
Disclaimer: Merlin characters are the property of Shine and BBC. No profit is being made, and no copyright infringement is intended.
Merlin didn’t really notice at first, but wet dream guy was back, huddled in the corner, scowling down at his phone. In a way, it was sad. He was gorgeous and just Merlin’s type, but he seemed so unhappy all the time that Merlin wanted to go over and give him a hug. Platonically, of course, because the man looked like he needed a friend more than lover. Even Merlin staring at him seemed almost an intrusion.
So he deliberately turned around and sat down.
Besides, film guy was right. Sometimes people only saw the façade. Even Merlin.
Maybe that’s why film guy didn’t want Merlin to see him. Maybe he was famous or gorgeous or, who knows. But Merlin wasn’t going to push it.
When the music started up, he hummed along. It was such a catchy tune. What he hadn’t expected was film guy humming with him. Merlin tried not to giggle at the idea of two guys singing to a silly old movie, but it certainly lightened his mood.
When Inspector Clouseau said ‘room’ for the first time in that terrible French accent, Merlin let out a loud snort. He couldn’t help it. Peter Sellers was a master of comedy and it was all so ridiculous. Even behind him, film guy was snickering. Finally film guy leaned over and said, in a good imitation of Clouseau, “Room.” His accent was even worse. Merlin had to stuff his fist in his mouth to keep from embarrassing himself, he was laughing so hard.
Film guy must have realized Merlin’s weakness. He kept whispering lines from the movie in an accent that would have had French people storming the theatre if they knew but Merlin’s sides ached from laughing. It was alarming really how amazing film guy was and how funny. And how much Merlin loved being around him.
Finally the plotline settled down a bit, then there was a whole scene with Robert Wagner hiding under the bed and film guy whispered, “First place I’d look.”
Snickering, Merlin said, “First place anyone with brains would look.”
There were bubble baths and bad guys in gorilla suits and Clouseau running after them in armor that had film guy muttering about how impossible that was, a final chase sequence that had Merlin howling. Merlin could hear film guy laughing so hard that he kept trying to catch his breath and failing. It was fantastic.
It made everything that had happened in the past week just melt away. Will the wanker calling again and work being one horrible mistake after another. It didn’t matter. This was just such fun and sharing it with film guy made it even better.
When the final music started, film guy leaned over and said, “Thank you. I haven’t had this much fun in ages. And with my father being such a hard arse, I really needed this.”
“Trouble at home?” Merlin didn’t want to push, but if film guy needed to talk, Merlin was up for it. After all, he’d helped Merlin last week with Will. It was only fair.
“My father keeps arranging dates with daughters of his friends for me. I’ve told him I’m gay, but he just refuses to accept it.”
Behind him, film guy let out a sigh. “It was one disaster after another this week. Work’s been horrid, too.”
“Tell me about it. The rumours where I work was that the CEO really gave it to his son and there was a lot of yelling and that filtered down so that everyone was on edge. I felt like I was walking on eggshells all week.” Merlin said, “I feel bad for the guy, but he needs to either suck it up or leave, for his sake.”
For a moment, film guy didn’t say anything. Finally, in a small voice, he said, “I agree.”
Merlin leaned back, his head pushing up against film guy’s. “Sorry to bring you down. And I really want to thank you for helping me with Will the wanker. I finally blocked his number and it felt like a huge boulder off my shoulders.”
“Very pro-active. You are an inspiration, you know.” Film guy sounded sincere, too, and Merlin blushed a little. “I’m sure if that CEO’s son were here, you could give him an earful.”
Merlin rubbed at his ears at that. “A large earful.”
Film guy reached over, brushing up against Merlin’s hand, and tugging at Merlin’s earlobe just a bit, then letting go, he said, “Maybe he needs a large earful.”
For a moment, there was silence, then the sound of the Pink Panther theme bounced along, credits rolling. Film guy said, “Next week is Superman. You know, the man of steel saving the day.”
“Poor guy, never getting a break. At least as Clark Kent, he’s allowed to make mistakes,” Merlin said.
Behind him, he could almost feel film guy’s surprise. “That’s… that’s how I feel, too. Sometimes… well, I’ve got to go. Duty calls and all. See you next week, then?”
What could Merlin say, that he didn’t want it to be over? Instead, putting a smile into his voice, he said, “I’ll be here.”
Film guy reached over and gave Merlin’s shoulder a squeeze. “So will I.” Then in that terrible French accent, film guy said, “Room.”
Merlin laughed, and then film guy was gone.
If only. If only there was a room with bubble baths and a soft bed and film guy. Then he shook the idea off. After all this time, a dream of something more with film guy was just that, a dream.