Chapter 15 A Visit
Merlin had the best night sleep he had in a long time in his new bed. Only to have been rudely awoken by Arthur. Bright sunlight hit his eyelids as he heard an obnoxious “Good Morning!” dropping a tray on the table loudly.
“Arthur? What are you doing?” He asked groggy from sleep. “Well you’ve had your fair shares of waking me up annoyingly in the morning, I figured I’d repay the favor.” Merlin groaned and fell back into the bed. “Common, you’ve got a big day ahead, Lord Merlin,” Arthur said knowing it would irritate him. Merlin turned on his side away from him, throwing a pillow, missing Arthur completely. “You’re not getting that back,” Arthur chuckled. Merlin pulled the covers tighter. “Let me sleep,” he mumbled.
“You wouldn’t let me sleep,” Arthur argued
“You promised me two days off” Merlin said over his shoulder.
“Well I was dying Merlin, I didn’t really know what I was saying.”
“Boys! Do you have to argue over everything?” Gwen asked as she came in. “That’s what brother’s do Gwen” Arthur said, Merlin only rolled his eyes. “Merlin, we and the main knights were going for a picnic, Arthur was supposed to invite you” Gwen said eyeing her husband. “I was about to,” Arthur defended.
“Where are we going Gwen?” Merlin asked sitting up.
“Actually, it was Arthur’s idea."
“Wait don’t tell him yet!” Arthur intervened. “Why not?” Merlin asked suspicious. “Just get dressed and meet us by the stables when you’re done eating.” Merlin raised an eyebrow but Arthur wouldn’t say anymore. “Hurry up, we want to leave early.” Arthur and Gwen left as Merlin got out of bed. Stumbling over to his dresser, Merlin picked out a blue shirt. His new wardrobe was similar to his usual outfits, but with better quality material. Slipping on some leather boots, and a red necktie before eating breakfast. Leaving his plate on the table, Merlin quickly went down to the stables were everyone was ready.
The company was ready to leave within a few minutes. Arthur and Gwen rode up front, Merlin rode next to Gwaine, with Percival and Leon behind them. “Does everyone else know where we are going? Or am I purposelessly being kept out of the loop? Again.” Leon shook his head, Percival shrugged. “I know,” Gwaine spoke up. “Care to share with the rest of the group?” Merlin asked him. “We’re going to Avalon” Arthur replied for him.
“What! Why there?” Merlin was the first to voice his surprise.
“The elves" Arthur said as if they should know what he was talking about.
“Elves?” Merlin asked.
“That’s where they went to; Avalon. They’ve been hiding there since the Great Purge. We’re going to tell them the ban is lifted” Arthur reveled. “You met the elves?!” Merlin was amazed, according to Gaius, they disappeared almost overnight. “I met only one, apparently Gwaine lived amongst them during the nine months.”
“Interesting race elves are.” Gwaine told them about his stay with them while they were traveling to Avalon. A little after noon, the company stopped for a picnic as Gwen promised. Gwaine spared with Percival and Leon. It was every man for himself. Gwen snuggled up with Arthur. Merlin smiled at the couple. It was nice to see Gwen so happy again. He couldn’t stop himself from suddenly thinking of Freya.
Arthur went to joined in the sparing, leaving Gwen with Merlin on the blanket. Gwen noticed Merlin’s change of mood and could guess what he was thinking. “Arthur didn’t want to go to Avalon just to tell the elves about the ban” she said. Merlin looked at Gwen questioningly. “He also wanted to go so you also see Freya.”
Gwen nodded, “He might not admit it, but he cares about you.”
Merlin, laughed to himself. “I think lifting the ban and promoting me Court Sorcerer says enough Gwen.” They both shared a laugh at that.
An hour later, they set off again. Making good time, they reached the lake before evening. Thondiair and Asiniell were at the water’s edge waiting to greet them. Arthur helped Gwenevere off her horse. “Your Majesty’s,” the elves bowed as the royals came up to them. “I come bringing good news," Arthur said with Gwen on his arm. "the ban of magic is lifted; you can now go in peace where ever you choose.”
Asiniell and Thondiair rejoiced. “Thank you, Arthur Pendragon. You will be remembered amongst our kin for ages to come” Thondiair said bowing again. Gwaine went over next, greeting the two elves. Leon and Percival followed, introducing themselves. Merlin was last to be acquainted. “Emrys” Thondiair acknowledged, bowing to him as well. “It is an honor to meet you at last.”
“Thank you. Please, call me Merlin. I have often been fascinated by your kind, I am glad to meet under these circumstances.”
“It is a blessing indeed” Asiniell said gratefully. Suddenly, something past the two elves caught Merlin’s eye. There in the shallow waters, stood Freya. She was as beautiful as Merlin remembered. The two elves parted for him, knowing she was behind them. Merlin felt like he was in a dream as he walked towards her. Not caring if his feet and bottom trousers were getting wet. Freya reached out her hands to him, Merlin went into her arms.
Merlin held her protectively as she cried softly into his shoulder. “I missed you,” Freya whispered. “I missed you every second of every day” Merlin told her as his tears ran freely with no shame. Freya pulled away from his shoulder, gazing into his Cerulean blue eyes. She placed her hands on both his cheeks and wiped away his tear stains. Merlin forgot about everyone else who was watching them. So he didn’t see the surprise on their faces from what he did next.
Merlin knelt down on one knee, holding her right hand. “Freya, I have loved you since the first time I saw you. I cannot imagine loving anyone else. My beautiful Freya, will you marry me?” Freya was speechless. “Merlin,” she said leaning over cupping his cheek again. “I cannot leave this lake, I am bound to it. Even your magic could not release me.”
“I don’t care about that. I would climb mountains and swim oceans just to be with you. I will love you until my dying breath. That is my vow.”
Freya had tears in her eyes again at those words. “Then yes. I will marry you.” Merlin rose and Freya leapt into his arms. Merlin spun her in a circle with their foreheads touching. Cheers erupted from the shore. Merlin was grinning from ear to ear as he walked towards them hand in hand, with his new bride to be.