Title: The wait is over
Pairings: Merlin/Arthur (ish)
Character/s: Merlin, Arthur, Knights in general
Summary: He almost ignored the feeling, not being able to take the disappointment.
Word Count: 992
Author's Notes: You know, I don't even know if this makes sense, it wasn't what I meant to write.
He felt like he had walked the world several times over when he finally felt it.
A small tug in the pit of his stomach.
The first time he felt it, he ignored it. He had felt it before, and he had been so hopeful about what it had meant that he had almost killed himself over it. The magic had just been a whisper on the wind that first time, and Merlin had instantly followed it. He hadn’t realised he had been walking straight through the front lines, he had lost track of where he was. The only thing he could focus on was the feeling in his gut, adamant that it meant his destiny was returning.
He had been right.
And he had been wrong.
It wasn’t Arthur the magic had reacted to though, but members of the Round Table. It was the same every time after that, Merlin had come to realise. A small tug in his centre informing him that someone had come back to life. He believed he would know when Arthur returned, but was too afraid of missing his king that he followed the sensation every time he felt it. That day had led him to Percival…in a roundabout way. He didn’t intend to meet the army’s doctor, especially not when the man was forced to pull shrapnel from his body after Merlin hadn’t been looking where he was going. But when he had regained consciousness to see a pair of startled eyes looking back at him, Merlin had known that it was beginning again.
He had promised to stay in touch and moved on. The magic had settled the second that Percival had recognised him and he knew that his job there was done. He had followed his instincts and let them lead him throughout the land, searching. Always searching. He had saved Gwaine from being crushed by a runaway carriage, he had put out the fire that had been threatening Elyan’s life and Lancelot had once again been responsible for saving him when Merlin had confused his geography and only realised the river was there when he was up to his neck in the fast flowing water.
But despite the group slowly being brought together and Merlin slowly beginning to orchestrate events so they could end up in the same place, that wasn’t who he was waiting for. They might have been getting along as if this was just a continuation of their old lives and they hadn’t been parted for all of this time. But Merlin couldn’t.
He couldn’t just stand there and pretend that everything was okay when he felt like his soul was slowly being shredded. How could they all be back and there still be no sign of Arthur? A cold feeling down his back had revealed the return of Morgana, and Merlin felt like he had been crippled when he felt Mordred’s life force return to the world.
But there had still been no Arthur.
If he was honest, Merlin wasn’t sure how long he could keep waiting for. They were all happy, they were again back on track. But despite having found them, Merlin couldn’t feel any better. The whole in his soul hadn’t yet begun to close, he still felt like as if he was only living half a life and knew that there would be no return to normality for him until his king rose again.
So when he once again felt the tugging sensation, Merlin ignored it. He couldn’t face finding someone else from their past and knowing that it wasn’t Arthur. He intended to just hide himself away and hope that if society couldn’t find him, then neither could the magic.
He should have known better though. The magic had never left him, not in this lifetime or any other. He had tried to deny his destiny before and it had always backfired. It only hurt him to ignore the magic, and so when it finally pulled him from his bed one night, Merlin knew he couldn’t just sit there.
As soon as he registered that he was going to follow the sensation, the feeling of being overwhelmed backed away slightly and allowed him to think. He never knew where to go when this happened, but just started walking and somehow his feet seemed to know what direction he needed to travel in. Merlin knew not to question it any more but just followed his instinct. He had never had to learn how to use his magic, he didn’t see why he would have to start now.
Regardless of the fact he was in enemy territory once again – it was the only way he could guarantee the Round Table wouldn’t follow him – Merlin had let himself walk through the dark without thinking about where he was going. He knew that Lancelot would be proud of him the fact that he remembered to stop this time when he felt the water lapping around his ankles. But if he was honest, it was more because of what was happening in the centre of the lake rather than realising he was getting wet.
A bright light seemed to be glowing, and as Merlin looked towards it, the intensity increased so greatly that he had to shield his eyes. The magic pulled him to his knees, doubling him over as if he was gasping for breath. Merlin had never felt anything like it, and he knew. He couldn’t breathe, he couldn’t think, all he could do was feel.
For he knew his wait was over.
How long Merlin knelt there, he had no idea. But there was suddenly a hand grasping his chin and tilting his head up. Merlin let himself be moved, let the thumb brush away the tears. It was only with the contact that he knew it was over. There would be no more waiting, no more roaming purposelessly.
Arthur had come back to him.