Title: Necessity For Survival
Pairing/s: Arthur/Gwen, Merlin/Morgana
Summary: The King of Britain is setting up his Kingdom
Word Count: 968
Prompt: 53 pretending
Author's Notes: Welcome to the “King of Britain” ‘verse.
Necessity For Survival
Merlin winced as he stood in the stark outer office of the new King of Brittan. He sighs, annoyed. “Some things never change. It doesn’t matter what century it is, he is still a prat.” He mumbled to himself.
Arthur appeared in the doorway. “Did you not hear me? I called for you.”
“Arthur, the dead heard you. What is it?”
“Where is your wife? She was supposed to be looking over the accounts. I need to know how bad this really is.” Arthur looked at him expectantly.
“My wife is with your wife. They are out looking at the site for the new palace.” Merlin said. “You would think she would have told you that this morning.”
“No. I rushed out this morning.” Arthur said. “What are they doing looking for a place to put a palace? There isn’t any money for that. This damn kingdom is broke. I wish you and Guinevere hadn’t talked me into this.”
“We didn’t have to talk much.” Merlin grinned. “I think they really just wanted an excuse to take the children out for the day. You do realize that you can’t rule your Kingdom from a three bedroom house on a cull-de-sac in Cardiff.”
“I suppose.” Arthur pinched his nose. “There isn’t any money for a palace. There is barely enough for these offices. It’s no wonder they were so happy to give it away.”
“I doubt that.” Merlin looked amused. “If they really wanted to be rid of it, they would have given you the whole bloody lot not just Wales.”
“Well then I wouldn’t need a palace.” Arthur shook his head. He could feel a headache coming on. His phone started ringing in his pocket. He took it out and looked at it. “It’s Guinevere. Hello my Queen.”
“How are you faring? Did your meeting go well with Prince Charles?”
“Sort of. We were drawing up the official borders of my Kingdom today before the maps are remade. It is everywhere we had before plus a little bit in the north east they don’t want. I can just imagine why.” Arthur scowled. “Where are you?”
“Camelot or what used to be Camelot. Did you know that there is a shopping mall where the lower town market used to be?”
“No shopping for you. We can’t afford it.”
“I was just looking. We are heading home. Do you want me to stop by the Thai place and pick up some take away?”
“Yes but make Morgana go in.”
“I may be the Queen but I still have to eat and so do you. I’m going in. I’ll meet you at home, Sire.”
“I’m leaving now with Merlin. Get enough for all of us.”
Gwen made a kiss sound into the phone and disconnected the call.
“What is she picking up?”
“Thai. I think I have had enough for today. We are meeting them at our place.” Arthur ducked back into the office and grabbed his jacket. “Let’s go Merlin.”
“What exactly is my title by the way?” Merlin asked as they headed out the door.
“Royal Advisor unless you want to be Court Sorcerer or maybe Court Jester.” Arthur chuckled.
“Royal Advisor is fine.” Merlin sighed. “I hate pretending not to have magick again.”
“Who said you had to? It’s not illegal. It’s not like I will be chopping off anyone’s head.” Arthur said. “Just be who you are and no more pretending. I get enough of people pretending as it is. I don’t need you to do it.”
“What do you mean?” Merlin asked.
“Prince Charles was pretending to be my friend when a few months ago he wouldn’t have even let me hold a door for him. It’s getting on my nerves.”
They reached Merlin’s car and got in. Merlin started it up. “Arthur, didn’t we do the same to Bayard and even Alined in the old days?”
“That was when Kings declared wars for stupid things. It was a necessity for survival.” Arthur said.
“Maybe it still is. You just took half of their kingdom after you come out of nowhere, a reincarnated king that was known as a great warrior in a time that was the bloodiest in our history. I think it makes them nervous.”
“No need to be nervous about me starting a war. It’s not like we could afford it.” Arthur said. “I just wish it wasn’t so obvious.”
“Maybe you should relax a little and so will they.” Merlin said. “Invite them over for tea or something.”
“Invite them to where? My three bedroom house on a cull-de-sac in Cardiff?” Arthur looked at Merlin like he was mental.
“Maybe a picnic.” Merlin said. “Let Gwen handle it. She is good at organizing parties.”
Arthur nodded. “I’ll tell her you said that. She will not be pleased. I’m not sure she really knew that this was going to be like.”
“Oh I think she remembers enough of the old days to handle herself.” Merlin said. “And you.”
“You are still a prat.” Merlin said as they arrived. “It’s what makes a good King.”
Arthur glared at him as he got out and went to unlock the door.
“You know it’s true.” Merlin said.
Arthur turned and looked at him. “If I’m still a prat does that mean you are still an idiot?”
“I was never really an idiot, Arthur; I was just pretending to be one.” Merlin held out his hand and the front door unlocked and opened. “But not anymore.”
Arthur nodded and laughed. “Maybe you should be Court Sorcerer after all.”
Merlin laughed. “Whatever my title, I will always be at your side, serving you.”
“Thank you, Merlin. You don’t know how comforted that makes me feel.” Arthur said as he walked inside.
Merlin grinned and followed him.