Title: This I know for certain (that you'll come back again)
Character/s:Arthur, Merlin, Gwen, Gwaine
Summary: The world has changed, the country devided, Arthur is the co-host of "The Merlin of the Century" and Emrys claims to be just that and far more. Bah humbug!
Warnings: Pre-slash or once-and-future-slash. Slight dystopia?
Word Count: 1000
Prompt: #100 Century
Author's Notes: Futurefic. Inspired by Scottish independence and reality shows. Yes, really. :)
Title from Solveig's song (Henrik Ibsen/Edward Grieg).
-I manipulate atoms at a quantum level.
Arthur blinks at the man standing on the stage. At least it was a new approach.
-So do mircowaves.
The part of the audience who got the joke laughed, and some laughed because they liked Arthur's sarcasm regardless if they got the joke or not. Arthur Drake was known as the Simon Cowell of the decade and was decidedly the non believer in the panel.
This program was the first collaboration between BBC and SBC (Scottish Broad Cast) since Scotland's independence and the fall of the UK. At least they still had this in common; the joy of laughing at idiots.
Genevieve was as usual the most calm and kind of the trio.
-Mister Emrys, what makes you believe you have what it takes to become the Merlin of the Century?
-Merlin is my name, Emrys is a title. It's not the other way around.
People chuckled. Arthur was hardly impressed.
-Indeed. I have seen you 'shows'. Cheap tricks for children. Your only redeeming feature is your peace approach.
A mixture of discontent and challenging ooooo's rose from the audience.
Gwaine Green dives in.
-I think what Drake is trying to say is that your reputation is well known. You are a cyberweb sensation under the name The Great Dragoon and you have several followers, but can you hold up in 3D live?
-I do believe I can.
It looks impressive, but lenses can be operated into the eye. Instead of a corrective one it could be one that lights up. Good entertainment, but proves nothing.
Cool if it's real. And a bit scary. o_O
Lol, laser eye fail.
Circus to the masses! This is all a scam to cover the real problem with this nation, which is the (click to read more).
Fool. There will never be peace between the former union members and EU.
Loved watching that guy while growing up. Shouldn't he have aged by now?
Arthur sighs as he scrolls down through the list of comments, moving his hands lazily before the large interactive wall. He chose to see the posts in text version rather than audio. He was not in the mood for sound. Many posts where in Skots and Cymraeg, but that rarely caused him any trouble. He had been given an extensive education and knew all the languages of the former United Kingdom as well as Great Russian and New German. His father had insisted that he would learn as much as he possibly, trying to make sure his son had the best advantage in a rapidly changing world. Arthur doubted that becoming the host of a reality show was what his father had in mind. He would have remembered Arthur's childhood obsession with magic and frowned. Arthur tried to convince himself that Uther might have approved since he was trying to disproving the existence of magic. And it did put him in contact with a lot of people from all layers of society. Though he had to admit he had made some enemies as well.
He should be sleeping. But he didn't want to dream. Merl... Emrys had passed all preliminary tests to screen out the obvious fakes and he solved the tasks and challenges with hardly any effort. He said it was because he was an old man who had learned to be patient. It would be more convincing if he didn't look 20-something.
-Ironic how you have more guards now that back then.
Arthur spun around. Emrys. He quickly looked at all the doors and windows he could see, nothing appeared to scream forced entry.
-How did you get in here? I am not to have any contact with the contestants. This is a breach of contract and you will be disqualified.
He used his most chilled voice. This house was more like a fortress than a house. A rebuild castle with all the modern facilities. He didn't think anyone could make their way here without permission. And many had tried; fans, haters, random fools and people hoping to gain free publicity for their cause.
-I didn't sign up for this to win a contest. I know who I am. What I want to know is; who are you?
His voice echoed from the thick stone walls of the room, sounding oddly familiar. Arthur told himself it was because he had heard the voice so often as a child. Perhaps holo-vision really did mess with people's heads. This had to be Dragoon's son. Same cheeky smile and bright eyes, same golden glow when he performed his tricks.
-I remember the letter you wrote me when you were eight.
-Don't change the subject. How did you get in here?
-I manipulate atoms at...
-...yes yes, that old line.
-I was already good at sneaking around in my early years. Nobody knows I am here.
He moves even closer.
-“Dear Dragoon. I really like your magic but my father says it's not real.”
-You dreamed of knights and castles and you were told it was your big ego that made you think you were the prince.
-You can't be here, you should leave.
-Did you dream of me?
He is suddenly too close, a hand caressing his chin so softly. Arthur forgets his words. Forgets to say the command that alerts the guards.
-When you grew older and your dream self grew older. Was I there?
He is backed against the wall now, Emrys lifts his head and lets his eyes fly over the letters and images before he looks at Arthur again. The light is wrong and Arthur tries not to think of candle light, torches or soft moon beams on pale skin.
-Arthur looking for the real Merlin. Uniting the nations, season after season. I have waited for you. We have things to do, you and I.
-Did you miss me?
Arthur desperately drew Merlin close. And if this wasn't magic, then nothing was.