Title: What Is Fair
Pairing/s: Arthur/Gwen, Elena/Lance
Summary: With the threat of another war, Arthur questions his ability to be a king in the modern world. Gwen and Elena have a heart to heart.
Word Count: 1077
The Golden Kingdom (Modern AU Series 3)
What Is Fair
After Merlin released his statement to the world news organization, there were mixed reactions. Some believed Britain was spoiling for a war. Others condemned England. There were even some who agreed with England and believed that Queen Elizabeth had the right to execute whoever she wanted in her own Kingdom.
Arthur sat reading over news articles on his laptop. The more he read the more he scowled. He knew what Merlin did was right but he didn't understand how others didn't see that. It upset him and he didn't like that.
After reading all he could stomach, Arthur closed the laptop and stood up. He took Excalibur from the wall and walked into the center of the room.
Gwen had been walking by when she caught sight of Arthur holding Excalibur. He looked like he wanted to run it through someone. She stopped and stood in the doorway.
“Arthur, what is it?” Gwen asked.
Arthur flicked the sword with his wrist before facing her. “All I have ever wanted was to be a fair and just King. The press makes me sound like a warmonger and a bully. Right now, I don't know who I am.”
“You are a warrior with a good heart.” Gwen stepped into the office. She walked over to Arthur and put her hand on his chest. “I believe in you. We can't let what others say change the way we rule. Those people have never been a King or Queen. They know nothing about what it means.”
“You love me. It colors the way you see me.” Arthur said.
“I'm not the only one. Our people love you. You have saved many lives. Lives of sorcerers and their families. This is a land of tolerance of the differences in all people. Britain is the Golden Kingdom after all.” Gwen stroked his cheek and smiled up at him. “Don't worry over what those fools say.”
Arthur sighed and looked at the sword in his hand. “In Camelot, I was content to be the warrior while you took care of the day to day affairs of state. It worked well for us then but I don't think it will work for us in this life.”
“That may be so.” Gwen said. “We can change the way we do things if you want. But Arthur, it is your nature to protect and my nature to organize. It would be difficult to change that.”
“Guinevere, I just want what is best for our people.” Arthur brushed back a stray curl from her cheek. “Merlin, on the other hand, is as reckless as he was in Camelot.”
“Morgana gave him ‘what for’ when he got home. He could have been killed.” Gwen said. “To be fair, he did save fourteen people from being executed.”
“And now we must bear the consequences of his rash actions.” Arthur said. He held up Excalibur and looked at it. “Things we so much simpler when I fought monsters and went on patrols.”
Gwen put her hand on his hand holding the sword. “So fight the monsters of this time, like Elizabeth. Fight for all of us. Be the warrior that you are. Fight for what is fair and just.”
Arthur looked at his Queen with love in his eyes. “How is it that you always know what I need to hear?”
Gwen shrugged. “I love you.”
“I love you too, My Queen.” Arthur kissed her softly.
Gwen caressed his cheek. “Put that back and go play with your daughters. They would love to see you.”
“I think I will.” Arthur smiled. He walked over and put Excalibur back on the wall. “Come with me?”
“No. Not this time.” Gwen looked at her watch. “Elena wants to chat with me. She should be here by now.”
“What's that about?” Arthur asked.
“Woman talk I think.” Gwen shrugged.
“I'll leave you to it.” Arthur led her out of the office and walked with her as far as the nursery.
Gwen entered her office and found Elena waiting for her. She shut the door for privacy.
“Let me guess. Lance has done something.” Gwen said.
“He proposed before he left. I told him I had to think about it.” Elena said.
“He did the same thing to me when he went into the Peace Corps.” Gwen told her. “I turned him down flat. I glad that you didn't.”
“I really don't think that's fair of him.” Elena frowned. “I have a life and a business here. I can't just uproot my life and go on his diplomatic adventures.”
“Lance sees it as romantic. It would be if it wasn't so complicated.” Gwen sat on the sofa next to Elena. “Arthur was pining for the old days a moment ago. What Lance is suggesting would have been easy and romantic then but not now.”
“I agree.” Elena sighed. “I want to go but ....”
“You don't want to give up your life to live his?” Gwen nodded. “Tell him he's not being fair about it. When you've talked it out give him your answer but only then.”
“Thanks Gwen. You are the only one I could talk to about this. Vivian would have told me to drop everything and go. Mithian would have told me to wait for him. I don't even want to know what Morgana would say. She still scares me a little.”
Gwen smiled. “There is one thing I wanted to talk to you about. I want to hold a private tea for the wives of the Rountable members. I was wondering if I could use the tea shop.”
“Of course. Just let me know the date. I'll get it done.” Elena thought for a moment. “What about Mr. Martin's husband?”
“Oh I was going to invite him and the three women council members too.” Gwen said. “In light of all that's going on, we need a bit of a break.”
“Do you think there will be another war?” Elena asked.
“I hope not.” Gwen sighed. “I don't want to have to hide in the abbey with the girls again. I hated being away from Arthur for weeks.”
Elena looked at her hands in her lap. “I may know how you felt if Lance and I can't work things out.”
Gwen patted her hand in sympathy. “Talk to him. Not talking things out was what he and I did wrong. I want you both to be happy.”
“Thanks Gwen.” Elena hugged her.