Today was the day of the celebration of the King’s coronation. It had been a year since he was put on the throne, so today the entire city, (every last person) was having a large celebration in his honor.
Arthur was not happy like he would be. Like he should have been. But he put up a brave face as all of his knights came to congratulate him and he thanked them and they laughed with him and joked with him and were being nice to him, but no Merlin. Merlin was attending to his duties as a servant, and nothing more.
Merlin was off fetching His Highness’ breakfast. He decided that today, of all days, was a day to at least be friendly with Arthur. It was hard being cold to Arthur, but he knew that he could not forgive him. Arthur would not accept Merlin’s magic, and Arthur was mad at Merlin for trying to protect him.
However, it was the anniversary of his becoming King, and Merlin wanted him to feel better, at least for a day or two. To show the people of Camelot that he was fine, even if he wasn’t. Merlin reminded himself that it was for Camelot that he did this, not Arthur, but he couldn’t quite bring himself to believe those words.
When he walked in the room, he decided to be a little upbeat and cheery. It would improve Arthur’s attitude, and the people needed someone to encourage their happiness, (trying and failing to convince himself that it was for Camelot's sake once again) anyway. Arthur was already awake, surprisingly, and eating.
“Good morning, sire!” He said with a smile on his face. Merlin had been planning on saying those words the whole way there: being happy instead of cold, but not addressing him by his name just to let him know that he was not going to miraculously become friends with him again. Arthur lifted up his head, confused at the sudden aura of friendliness his now distant servant was giving off.
“Merlin?” Arthur’s voice sounded much better than it had before. For the past month, whenever Arthur had spoken to Merlin, his voice had sounded broken and hollow. The unbearable guilt had taken over Arthur’s nature, and nobody in the castle had failed to notice just how horrible Arthur was feeling. “Is everything alright?”
Merlin nodded. “Everything is fine, my lord.” He gave another toothy smile, and it was simply impossible to resist. Arthur smiled as well, happy that his servant wasn’t keeping up his chilly demeanor for a little while.
So by the time Arthur was headed down to the festival, which was just beginning, he was in high spirits. He walked onto the balcony, where the whole of Camelot was waiting for the King. As he approached the edge with Guinevere at his side, he looked over his people and smiled. “Let the festival... begin!”
The people yelled as musicians began to start playing, and people danced in the courtyard. People flocked to the marketplace as a great many goods were being sold. Food, toys, beauty products, necklaces, clothes, and drinks. Sir Gwaine was in the tavern, enjoying himself as he admired the many pretty girls there. Sir Elyan and Sir Percival were wandering the marketplace, using their generous pay to buy things for their friends and relatives. Sir Leon was in the courtyard, showing some of the smaller children the horses.
This went on for hours until everyone was called to the courtyard for the King’s speech.
Merlin was just wandering around watching the dancers and listening to the many singers and musicians. He was very happy, and the smile on his face looked like ti would be etched there permanently. He was looking around, drinking in the crazy, active scenario when he saw a person cloaked in all black sneaking around the crowd and into a small door leading into the castle.
Merlin, furrowing his brow, followed the suspicious character. The man slunk behind corridors and stayed hidden, flat against walls. Merlin followed suit, not wanting to be seen by this strange person. He had a bad feeling about whatever he was doing.
Merlin soon realized that this mysterious man was heading towards the balcony where Arthur and Guinevere were watching the festival play out, and he knew that this visitor meant no good for the King and Queen. His muscles tensed as he glimpsed at something under the man’s cloak: a dagger with the initials A. P. on them. Arthur Pendragon.
The dagger was meant to kill the King.
This assassin was very skilled, Merlin realized. Nobody had noticed him. Well, except for Merlin, of course.
The assassin made his way to the doors where Arthur and Guinevere were standing, and then silently slit the throat of every guard. However, if Merlin wanted to save Arthur, he had to stay hidden. It gave him a horrible feeling to see these good people slain by such a terrible one.
Then, the assassin cracked open the door a little. He unsheathed the knife meant for Arthur, and was about to throw it when Merlin did the only thing that he could think of doing: he pushed the man out of the doors and into the open.
The assassin was very surprised, to say the least, to suddenly be out in the open where the entirety of Camelot could see him and his intentions. Soon, Merlin was out there too, and he yelled, “Arthur!”
Arthur turned around to see a man in a black cloak with a dagger and a disturbing grin on his face, and a worried Merlin. He drew Excalibur, and Guinevere screamed for the guards. She drew a small dagger out of her belt and backed away, and Merlin moved in front of her.
The assassin muttered, “Many years I have waited for this moment, Arthur Pendragon. Today is the day that you die.”
Arthur looked both alarmed and angry. Soon, the crowd noticed what was going on and shouts and gasps echoed across the city. The knights, scattered everywhere, drew their swords and abandoned what they were doing immediately, but it was to no avail. They were much too far away.
The assassin grinned again, before flicking his dagger at Arthur. The blade was sharp, and it seemed to give off a black, dark, evil aura. Even its blade was dark, like a shadow. It spun through the air right on target at Arthur’s heart, and the entire festival gave a scream as the enchanted dagger came forth to kill their beloved King.
But it missed. A furious look came upon the face of Arthur’s manservant as he ran and pushed his hand forward, his eyes glowing gold as the dagger landed in Merlin's hands, and his fist clenched around the hilt. Then, in an instant, the dagger was embedded in the assassin's chest.
There was stunned silence for a moment, while everyone in the kingdom’s eyes widened, seeing the event that had just unfolded. Everyone knew Merlin: he was a kind, young boy who everyone could not help loving. He had helped everyone in some way or another, and many of the young children looked up to him and admired his bravery.
To see that he had magic, that he was a traitor to the kingdom of Camelot was the worst thing that they could have imagined. As the gold faded from Merlin's eyes slowly, the kingdom was completely silent.
Gwaine’s eyes were wide and his mouth was a small line as he slowly lowered his sword, feeling betrayed and lied to. Gwen had her hand to her mouth and she was backed as far away from Merlin as possible. How could he have acted like that?
Percival, Elyan, and Leon could not believe what they had seen. It was a feeling of great sadness, disappointment, and anger. The display of magic that had been used in front of everyone was angry, aggressive magic, and did not make Merlin look good at all.
Arthur grabbed Merlin’s arm, brought him inside the castle, and hissed at him: “What were you thinking? They’re going to kill you!” Merlin looked ashamed and on the verge of tears.
He ignored Arthur’s question and said what was on his mind. “They - they all hate me now. They think I’m evil... I’ve lost all my friends.” The terrified look on Guinevere’s face, though she knew of his secret, was still in his mind. One of his oldest friends... scared of him.
Arthur shook his head. “You have to leave the city, Merlin. It’s not safe for you anymore.”
Merlin shook his head as well. “Arthur, go. I need to be alone for a second.” Arthur was about to protest, but Merlin gripped his arm as well. “Arthur.”
Arthur had a look of venom on his face, but he went and grabbed Gwen and brought her inside. Merlin noticed how she was pointedly looking away from him.
As soon as he was sure that Arthur and Gwen were gone, he went back out onto the balcony. People were up there trying to calm everyone down, but Merlin’s appearance only riled the crowd more.
He raised up his hands and whispered a spell. Time slowed down to a stop and Merlin used a small spell to make sure that everyone who had seen his magic was still present. Once he was satisfied, he raised his voice to start creating a powerful spell.
The whole of Camelot was taken under: Everyone except for Arthur, Gaius, and Gwen.
They forgot Merlin had magic.