Title: Absence makes the heart grow fonder
Summary: Arthur is determined to act
Author's Notes:Thanks to derenai for the beta. Part of my "My special one" series.
Arthur looked at his father with determination in his eyes. He knew that reproaches and lessons would come but whatever his Father may say, he was determined to convince him to let him leave Camelot.
“So… You’re asking me if you can go fetch that boy? If I’ll let my son, the Crown Prince of Camelot, crawl to bring a peasant back?”
Arthur didn’t answer, guessing his Father hadn’t finished yet.
“That same peasant you kidnapped? The one you let leave Camelot even if it was against the realm’s laws? Really Arthur? What are you exactly? A spoiled brat or a Crown Prince?”
“Father… I know I haven’t acted wisely about Merlin but I want to apologize to him like a noble man should.”
“Apologize? For what exactly? Do I need to tell you that these men are not your friends? They're just slaves meant to please you! Nothing more!”
Arthur gritted his teeth. How could his Father be so heartless! Whatever his “toys” were meant to do, they remained human beings and had to be treated like so.
“You can’t grow fond of them Arthur!” Uther concluded.
It was too much for Arthur.
“I’m not fond of Merlin! I love him!” He exclaimed, immediately regretting it.
He shouldn’t have let his father know. It was like showing his weak spot to him.
Uther looked at Arthur, surprised and then he laughed.
“You’re in love? How sweet of you Arthur… I always knew you were too kind but now, falling in love with a peasant? With one of your slaves? You amaze me.”
Uther kept laughing, making Arthur feel like he was just a little boy. If Uther had wanted his son to feel humiliated, it was a success. But Arthur’s determination was still there. It had taken him weeks to realize what Merlin really meant for him and to gather the energy and the courage to act. Weeks and endless conversations with Gwaine. Now, he couldn’t go back. He needed to see Merlin again, to apologize to him for the way he had treated him and confess his feelings.
Arthur was aware it wouldn’t be easy and that Merlin probably wouldn’t want to hear about him though he had to try.
When his father finally stopped laughing and dismissed him, Arthur was already forming a plan to escape Camelot and go to Ealdor.
Two days later, Arthur accompanied by two of his most trusted knight, left Camelot for what should have been a simple hunting trip.
He knew what risk he was taking. Going to Ealdor and back would at least take him three days not talking about the time he hoped to spend with Merlin. A hunting trip in the woods would only had lasted two days. And it wouldn’t take his Father long to guess where his son had gone.
Arthur was ready, though, and if meeting Merlin again led him to some nights in Camelot’s dungeon, it was a price he was ready to pay.