Title: The Red Cloak
Character/s: Arthur, Merlin
Summary: Portends in the water.
Word Count: 250
Prompt: 160 Sunset
Author's Notes: None
Disclaimer: I do not own the BBC version of Merlin; They and Shine do. I am very respectfully borrowing them with no intent to profit. No money has changed hands. No copyright infringement is intended.
Pushing the red wool into the cold water, a spill of vibrant colour swirled outward. His fingers surrounded by scarlet, Merlin couldn't tell if it was the unset dye or the soaked blood leaching into the water but he kept trying anyway. Gathering the cloak, he shoved it into the bucket again, cursing it, cleaning it.
All Merlin ever wanted to do was protect Arthur and find a place at his side. But instead the clotpole yelled at Merlin to wash his stupid cloak and his stupid armour and his stupid, stupid socks and ignored every warning he was given. He wouldn't accept Merlin's frantic pleas or any acknowledgement that it was a colossally bad idea to go to Camlann.
The stubborn prat was acting like he always did, being stupidly heroic, the cabbage-headed king of Camelot and an endless test of Merlin's resolve.
He'd have to protect Arthur even from himself; he would have to find Mordred all on his own. He couldn't be spending time cleaning cloaks. A storm was coming and Merlin had to prevent it before it destroyed them all.
Letting the dark cloth settle back into the bucket, he raced out the door, intent on gathering supplies, on making excuses to Arthur, and ending this all before it was too late.
But in the water, the colour deepened to blood-red, and then as the days passed, to black. And when Merlin never returned, finally, among the ruins of Camelot's glory, the cloak disintegrated into dust.