Chapter 12 Reunion
Arthur didn't know what Merlin's reaction would be when he saw him. Certainly not expecting for Merlin to step in front of Gwen, protecting her from him. "Merlin?" Arthur questioned. "Who are you?" Merlin asked venom dripping from his words. Gwen placed a reassuring hand on Merlin's shoulder. "Merlin, it's him, it's really him. He's come back."
"No" Merlin said coldly. "No, you are not Arthur, you are an imposter!" Arthur shook his head. "No I'm not Merlin. I'm really here, look" he said revealing Excalibur. The metal rang from coming out of it's sheath. "That doesn't prove anything," Merlin said harshly. "It could just be a duplicate." Arthur was shocked, Freya said Excalibur would be proof. Now what was he supposed to do?
"Merlin please believe him, he is Arthur; I know he is" Gwen tried. Merlin just shook his head. "Gwen, you know its Arthur because you want him to be." Arthur groaned if frustration. "Of all the times to be stubborn Merlin, now is not one of them." Merlin didn't react, instead he studied Arthur carefully watching his movements. "What can I do to convince you?" he asked desperately. Merlin studied him carefully. "The last words, Arthur Pendragon said to me" Merlin said slowly. Arthur didn't even hesitate. "Thank you." Merlin didn't know what to do. It was Arthur, the friend he failed to protect, his other half, now returned.
Arthur could tell his friend was struggling. Merlin turned away from him and gripped the bed post for support. He slowly walked up to him, like you would to a wounded animal. "Merlin," he said placing both hands on his friend's shoulders. Merlin didn't say anything, he didn't even move. Arthur turned him around and engulfed him in a hug. Merlin returned the gesture."I know Merlin," Arthur said. Merlin looked up at him not understanding. "I know everything." Merlin paled. "Everything?" Arthur nodded. "Thank you, Merlin, for everything you've done; and I'm so sorry." Gwen was silently watching, and moved over to the two of them. Arthur took his left arm off of Merlin and opened it for Gwen. Merlin opened his right so she could join. Gwen cried, they were tears of joy as she went to hug the both of them. Feeling whole once more.
They stayed like that for a while, until there was another knock on the door. "Oh right," Arthur said sheepishly. Merlin and Gwen just looked at each other as Arthur mad his way towards the door and opened it. "Merlin!" bellowed Gwaine who ran into the room along with Leon and Percival behind him giving his friend a huge bear hug. "Gwaine!?" Merlin and Gwen said shocked. Again. Gwaine gave Arthur a death stare. "You didn't tell them about me?!" he accused. "Sorry," Arthur said awkwardly "got caught up." Gwaine rolled his eyes, Leon and Percival chucked. "I believe we all have some catching up to," Arthur said taking Gwen's hand leading her to the table. Gwen didn't let go even once. Arthur sat at the head of the table, he had Merlin sit on his right while Gwen was on his left. Gwaine sat next to Merlin, while Leon and Percival sat on Gwen's side. "I'll get us some food and wine," Percival said leaving the room. "Extra wine for me please" Gwaine requested. This time Percival rolled his eyes, everyone laughed. Some things just won't change.
Percival quickly returned, Merlin helped him. Arthur and Gwiane dug into the food while wine was being poured. "Now," Arthur began, "Merlin. I want you to tell everyone everything you've done for me, and for Camelot." Merlin fidgeted in his chair, he didn't like all the attention on him used to being in the shadows. Of course Gwen requested he tell her what he had done. Only he didn't tell her all of it, especially the dangerous parts. "And don't leave anything out," Arthur ordered, "I'll know if you do." So Merlin began his tale.