Title: The Taste of Her Tears
Characters/ Pairing/s: Arthur/Gwen, Merlin/Morgana, Leon/Mithian, Percival/Vivian, Lancelot/Elena, Elyan/Adara*, Gwaine, Gaius, Finna, Braden*
Summary: English troops are on the border and only magick and hope can save them now.
Warnings: Child birth complications, War
Word Count: 1829 (insanely over)
Author's Notes: This is the last prompt for 'King Of Britain'. The new series starts next week.
Modern Camelot (Modern AU Series 1) ||| King Of Britain (Modern AU Series 2)
The Taste of Her Tears
“No! I will not!” Gwen yelled at Arthur in his office.
“Guinevere, it’s the only way to keep you and the Princesses safe.” Arthur wasn’t going to on his decision.
“This is my kingdom too. I have a right to stay and fight.” Gwen pushed some more.
“If it weren't for the princesses, I would let you as you have done so many times before but they are too young to lose us both.” Arthur said.
“So I'm sent to hide in the woods like it’s the fifth century?” Gwen put her hands on her hips and glared at him.
“Guinevere, please they have been building troops on our northern border for a week now. You have to leave here. If Merlin's shield fails, this building will be their first target.” Arthur told her. “You aren't going alone. Elena and Mithian are coming with you.”
“Well, that is just bloody wonderful, a pregnant woman and a chatterbox. That will make the trip so much more enjoyable.” Gwen started to realize fighting with him was no use. “What about Morgana and Adara? Aren't they coming too?”
“No we aren't. Merlin needs us to stay.” Morgana said from the door with Devon in her arms. She swallowed and wiped a tear from her face. “I need you to take Devon with you.”
“Morgana, I will but he needs his mother.” Gwen felt her gut wrench for her sister in law. She finally lost her anger and started to cry.
“I know but Merlin needs as many with magick as he can get for the shield to work.” Morgana looked at Devon and smoothed his dark curls. “There was almost thirty when I left to bring Devon to you but that may not be enough.”
“Where am I taking everyone?” Gwen wiped her face.
“To the abbey. There is a bomb shelter there built after World War 1. It’s secure and in good order.” Arthur told her.
“I'm taking a pregnant woman on that rutted old road? She'll go into labor.” Gwen glared at Arthur again. “If she does, it’s too soon.”
“It can't be helped.” Arthur dragged his hand through his hair. “I need you to do this, Guinevere.”
Gwen just nodded and wiped another tear away.
“Gaius is there already. Finna will help you too when you get there and I will put a masking spell on the van to keep you safe while you travel.” Morgana said. “I've loaded it with as much nappies, food, and water as I can. Elena and Mithian are waiting downstairs.”
“I should go then.” Gwen said. She looked at Arthur. “Walk with me?”
Arthur took her hand and went into her office to collect the Princesses. Gwen packed up their things as Arthur picked them both up one in each arm and carried them down to the lobby.
Leon was waiting with Mithian, who was crying as they said a last good bye as they arrived. He stepped forward with a box in his hand.
“Gwen, take these with you in case. I know you and Mithian know how to use them. It will make me feel better.” Leon said as he opened the box to reveal two automatic pistols and several loaded clips.
Gwen and Mithian had gone through firearms training with the Knights by Arthur’s request. Vivian was a shepherd’s daughter and preferred a rifle to a pistol. Elena had refused because she didn’t like killing things. She didn’t think it was necessary because she wasn't the wife of a Knight like Mithian.
“I will take them but I pray I don't need them.” Gwen said. “Has anyone heard from Vivian?”
“She was on holiday on the continent.” Mithian said. “She was supposed to be back by now.”
“Percival told her to stay put for now.” Arthur said. “You need to get on the road. I have to get up north.”
Leon kissed Mithian and helped into the back seat. They murmured to each other before he stepped out.
Elena climbed into the front seat. She was pale and oddly quiet.
Gwen stowed the pistols under the front seat and put the Princesses’ bag in the back. He passed the Princesses one at a time to Gwen after kissing them as she buckled them in with Devon in the center.
Morgana kissed Devon and hugged Gwen. “Get in and I'll cast the spell.”
Gwen nodded and got in the driver’s seat. Arthur kissed her before closing the door.
Morgana said a spell that sounded like something ancient. The van glowed a moment and then returned to normal.
Arthur's eyes were glistening as he fought to hold back his own tears. He could taste her tears in her kiss. He hated that taste. It was salty and sad.
Gwen pulled out of the parking garage and headed down the road to the abbey. She knew the way without the GPS which she assumed wouldn't work because of the masking spell
They rode in silence for almost twenty minutes before Elena cleared her throat.
“Gwen, its bad isn't it?” Elena asked.
“As bad as it gets.” Gwen said with a heavy sigh.
Thirty minutes later, they were at the abbey. They were greeted by Finna and Gaius.
Finna called to a younger woman to bring in the supplies, as she helped Gwen and Elena get the children inside.
Gwen grabbed the pistols before she grabbed the keys on the way inside.
Gaius helped Mithian out of the back. He gave her a concerned look.
“Are you alright, My Lady? Gaius asked as Mithian grabbed the door of the van as she was getting out.
“I think I'm in labor.” Mithian said. “It’s too soon. I have weeks yet.”
Gaius put a practiced hand on her belly. He could feel the contraction subsiding. I have medicine in my bag to try to stop it. Has your water broken?
“No.” Mithian said. It started before we left and all the bouncing made it worse.”
“You shouldn't worry. Babies come when they want to.” Gaius helped her inside. He knew it was early and that it could be a problem. He hoped he could stop it before her water broke and there was no turning back.
In a warehouse near the northern border of Britain, Adara and Merlin were checking in the volunteers with magick. There were nearly fifty people there by the time Arthur, Leon and Morgana arrived. They joined Lance, who was looking at maps of the area.
“Nice to see you again, Lord Emrys.” A young man’s voice said. “I guess being a ‘Lord’ beats being a man servant by heaps.”
Merlin looked up from the list that he was checking and grinned. “Braden!?”
“Yes My Lord. The young man’s tone was teasing but his face looked serious.
“You have your powers in this life?” Merlin asked. He was happy to see his pupil from another lifetime.
“I wouldn't be here if I didn't. I'm here to help. I'm on your list. I signed up as soon as I heard about the registry.” Braden said.
“Adara, look for ‘Braden Aduston’ on the list.” Merlin said to her as she sat at the table in front of the queue to sign in.
“I’ve got him. Is that you?” Adara asked.
“Yes. I'm a Gold Knight. Well I was.” Braden turned to look where Arthur was standing. “Is that Morgana? She looks different somehow.”
“Motherhood does wonders for some women.” Merlin chuckled. “She and I are married. We have a son.”
“I had heard. She looks so ... so normal.” Braden winced at the look Merlin gave him.
Elyan and Gwaine rushed in and went straight to Arthur.
“I don't think its maneuvers anymore. They are getting into formation for an assault.” Gwaine said.
“We probably have less than a half hour before they reach the border.” Elyan said.
Arthur nodded. “Merlin!”
Merlin looked over to Arthur.
“Get them on it now. The English are on the move.” Arthur told him.
Elyan and Adara made eye contact. Adara gave him a smile and a nod. Elyan nodded back. That is all the encouragement they both needed at the moment.
“Morgana rushed to Merlin's side as he unfolded a map on the large table.
“Everyone gather round and focus on my voice. You will have to repeat what I say.” Merlin shouted. He said a spell in an ancient tongue.
The sorcerers in the warehouse started to chant the spell.
Arthur watched as a gold sheen flowed over everyone then shot up through the roof.
“This better work or we will all be dead. Again.” Arthur said half to himself and sighed. The memory of the taste of Gwen’s tears as she kissed him that last time hit him. It was the same as when she had kissed him before the battle at Camlann. It was an omen, he was sure of it.
In the abbey, Mithian was in full hard labor. Gaius had tried but she was too far in to stop it by the time they had arrived.
Gwen was trying to keep her calm but it wasn’t working. “You have to relax. Getting upset will only make it take longer.”
“We can’t lose this child. We just can’t.” Mithian said as she cried. “Leon would never forgive me.”
“You have to have hope.” Gwen said. “We will do all we can to keep you both safe.”
Gaius pulled Gwen to the side. “The baby is breach and I have to turn it. There are no drugs in my bag that I can give her that won’t harm the baby. You and Finna have to hold her down.”
Gwen nodded. “I was right this morning. It is the fifth century again. We had better get it over with.”
Gaius motioned to Finna and he explained what he was going to do. Finna looked at him wide eyed and nodded.
Gwen and the frightened nun held Mithian down by her arms and shoulders. They each grabbed one of her knees.
“What are you doing?” Mithian started to panic.
“The baby is breach I have to turn it. This is not going to be pleasant so scream all you want.” Gaius said.
Mithian screamed as Gaius turned the baby. She nearly fainted but Gwen slapped her cheek.
“Mithian! Stay awake!” Gwen said. “You’re going to have to push.”
“Shouldn’t be long now.” Gaius said. He gave Gwen a cautious look.
Gwen nodded. She prayed for them both.
At the northern border, the troops were approaching but they couldn’t penetrate the shield. They tried all manner of weapons but nothing went through. No person could pass through either. They fell back and waited.
Three weeks later, they were still waiting.
At the abbey, Gwen and Gaius had their hands full. They were running out of supplies and medicine. They only bright spot of hope, Mithian was weak but alive and so was the very small baby boy.