It had been a great day for Merlin, his friends, and his family. They were all in the throne room just talking and laughing but it ended all to soon. Alith burst through the door and bowed to Balinor then said "My lord, King Uther of Camelot is here he says if you do not grant an audience with him right now he will kill anyone in his way till he reaches this room and he says that he wants Prince Merlin and his son here as well and if you refuse he will massacre every person he can until you comply. What should I tell him sire?" Balinor looked at Merlin then Arthur, then to his wife, daughter, and soon to be daughter-in-law and sighed.
"Hunith take the girls to our chambers if I do not live through this you know what I have asked know you I love all of you. Merlin, Arthur you will stay Arthur I am sorry you have to see this but I will not fight your father because that will just cause a war with Camelot and I do not want that for either of our Kingdoms." Balinor paused the turned to Alith and said "Show him in Alith." Alith bowed his head then left.
five minutes later Uther walked in sword drawn and a sneer on his face as he said "I knew I would find you one day Balinor I can't believe it took me this long to make the connection I should have killed your brat a long time ago thank the gods he did not corrupt my son with his lies and evil magic but now I can kill you make your son feel the pain of losing a loved one and then I will get the chance to kill him myself. now fight me!" Uther yelled his last sentence but Balinor remained calm while walked towards Uther till he was ten paces away Uther raised a cross bow as Balinor said "I will not fight you Uther because of the friendship we once held before you began your campaign on magic so go ahead and kill me but know that you will not succeed at destroying magic." Uther sneered "Oh trust me I will." with that he shot a crossbow bolt right into Balinor's chest and Balinor fell to the ground and Merlin ran towards him.
"Father, please there must be something I can do I can't lose you so soon after getting you back!" Merlin cried over his father Balinor put a hand on his sons cheek saying "You have to let me go, I have never felt as happy as I have in the last two days since you have been home. I am so proud of the man you have become my son, but now it is your turn to show the world who you really are, you are Emrys and you will be a great king of Anelya so go and show the world what you are capable of and fulfill your destiny do that for all of us. I am so proud to have you as my son and I have never been prouder of you than I am at this moment. I can die happy knowing that I got to see you one last time." Balinor told Merlin that he loved him and with his last breath kissed his sons forehead and with that the great king of Anelya was dead.
Merlin cried over his father's body for a few minutes as Uther smirked in a manic way knowing he had hurt the boy who had deceived him while Arthur looked on in shock at what his father had done. "Now it is your turn you monster time for you to die too, are going to fight please say yes so I can proven right about how evil your kind is." Uther said smugly Merlin looked at his father's face noticing his father died with a small smile on his lips and what he had said rang in Merlin's ears "Show the world who you really are and fulfill your destiny." Merlin stood slowly and turned to Uther saying "Uther Pendragon I want to fight you because you killed my father before my eyes but that would just make me no better then you. I will not fight you for Arthur's sake I will not take his father away from him like you took mine. I care to much for Arthur to do that to him. So kill me with your blade for I know you only brought one bolt and I will not fight you, and I will not make Arthur choose because I care to much for him to make him choose between his own father and a friend. Now get on with it." Merlin looked at his father as Uther walked up to him sword ready for the final strike.
But just as Uther brought his blade down another blade blocked it Merlin was the first one to speak as he saw who wielded the blade "Arthur what are you doing?" Arthur looked at Merlin and smiled "I know you said you would not make me choose but I am choosing and I choose you, brother my father's wrong and I can't stand by and watch anymore, so I'm choosing you." Merlin smiled back at Arthur
Arthur then turned to his father who was in shock but broke out of it the moment Arthur called Merlin brother and now that Arthur was looking at him he growled "Arthur you would choose a sorcerer over your own family I raised you better than that. You know the evils of sorcery and yet you choose them. I have never been more disappointed in you." Arthur stood strait as he said "Yes I have seen some evil in sorcery but I have also seen the good in it you condemn all for the sins of a few, As far as I am concerned you are no father of mine you were never there for me, you passed me off to a nursemaid the first chance you got. You put your war against sorcery above me and everything else. Now I challenge you father for the right to the throne a fight to the death winner take all." Merlin stepped in saying "Arthur you don't have to do this." Arthur was still looking at his father as he said to Merlin "Yes I do Merlin I can't stand by and watch as this man massacre more innocent people and I won't, and the people of Camelot need a ruler who will care about them not a tyrant who only cares about his own personal quest. The magical community need to know that they will not be hunted for the sins of a few as well." Uther straitened and said "It looks like he has enchanted you son so let's hope when I kill him the enchantment he has over you will end." With that Uther rushed at Merlin sword held high Merlin did not even bother to draw his sword because no matter how angry he was at Uther for taking his father away from him he could not do the same to Arthur. He knew Arthur still loved his father and Merlin could not take that away from him.
Just as Uther almost close enough to drive his sword through Merlin's chest a blade sprouted through Uther's chest causing him to drop his sword. Uther looked down at the blade as it slid out of his chest. He fell to his knees and Arthur came around to face his father Uther looked up at Arthur and said "He will betray you and you will see that I was right and that you killed your own father for nothing." "No father he would never betray me unlike how you betrayed your friends because one made a mistake. You are no longer any family of mine and magic users will no longer suffer oppression like they have the last twenty years. Magic will be free in Camelot again and no one magic or not will have to afraid of who they are or who their children are." With his last breath Uther said "You will never succeed." Uther dropped to the floor dead.
Arthur turned and saw Merlin kneeling by his own father's dead body and he saw the tears that slid down Merlin's face. Arthur kneeled down beside Merlin a comforting arm around him pulling Merlin into a hug as he cried for the loss of his father until his tears ran dry. Merlin looked at Arthur and said "I'm not ready for this I am not ready to take my father's place I can't do this Arthur. How am I even going to tell mother, my sister that my father is dead. What am I to do." Arthur looked Merlin in the eyes and said "Merlin I heard what your father said to you, he knew you were ready and you proved him right the way you stood up to my father. You are ready Merlin and you won't be alone you still have me and you have your mother and sister and your soon to be wife. None of us will ever abandon you and it is time the world knew you for who you really are and all of who you are. I will stand by what I said to my father that Magic will again be free in Camelot." "Arthur you do not have to do that for me or anyone after twenty years of Uther telling everyone magic is evil so many have started to believe it and it will not be easy to change their minds for all they have seen are those willing to act on their anger at your father for he has done." Merlin paused then asked "Why did you do it why did you choose me he was your father all I am is a good friend so why did you do it?" Arthur smiled saying "You are so much more than a good friend, I told you once that you are a little brother to me in all but blood, your are also my best friend. You have been there for me since the day we met, and my father was never there for me my whole life. Today I make you a promise, I will never abandon you or betray you and you will always have an ally in Camelot nothing needed. All I want is to never lose you and your family for all of you have been more like the family I should have had all my life. In only the two days I have been here I finally knew what it felt like to have a family and I grieve for your father just like you do because in the two days I have been here he treated me like his own son. It is my fault that he is gone but I will do everything I can to make sure that his sacrifice was not in vain. You are the brother I should have had and you will make a fine king for Anelya. I chose you because you are my brother and I will not let anything to happen to you or your family again I promise you that." Arthur paused then said "If you will have me I stay a while see your coronation and your wedding and I will stay for a little while after, then I will head back to Camelot and hopefully you will come with me along with your family so you can see my coronation and hopefully you will stay for a few months and we will just keep going back and forth a few months in each place that way you will have the support you need and I won't have to lose my brother or newfound family. So will you have me?" Merlin smiled threw his tears the smile reached his eyes this time as he said "I would not have any other way you prat." Arthur laughed knowing that Merlin was trying to start their banter they usually did and Arthur pulled Merlin into a headlock and rubbed his knuckles into his new brother's head saying "Yeah well your stuck with me Idiot so you better get used to it because you will be seeing a lot more of me." Merlin laughed while he used a trick he knew would catch Arthur off guard and practically flipped Arthur on his back Merlin on top of him pinning Arthur's arm above his head and said "Well I am glad of it so you better get used to ruff housing my way because you going to be getting a lot of it behind closed doors." Merlin laughed along with Arthur as he stood pulling Arthur with him.
Merlin got serious as he said "I should tell my mother and sister what happened then our fathers will both be burned as a burial for the people to see. It is the highest honor given to a king." Arthur looked at Merlin confused as he asked "Why are you giving my father an honored burial when he killed your father in cold blood and tried to kill you I don't understand why you would do that?" Merlin gave a small smile as he said "You father may have killed mine, he may have committed many crimes but he was still a king and father taught a long time ago that even those who fall even your enemy deservers your respect and Uther may have made himself an enemy of mine this day he died trying to kill me but I will honor him as is right in the only way I can by giving him an honorable burial that my father would have commanded he be given and I will bury my own father on the same prier as he would have wanted. That is why I give him and honorable burial Arthur because I was raised to respect my enemies no matter who they are. I also have another reason and that is you, for all your father did he did one thing that I will not regret he let me be your manservant, he let me get to know you and you me, and in doing so he gave me a brother and even though I have much to hate him for I have to thank him for giving me a brother in you." Arthur smiled in understanding then Merlin called the guards told them to prepare both bodies for burial and to build the prier tell the towns people and everyone they can find that the burial will be set in two hours.
Once the guards had left with their father's bodies Arthur followed Merlin to Balinor's chambers where his mother, sister, and fiancé were waiting. Merlin took a deep breath while Arthur squeezed his shoulder reassuringly and opened the door.
"Mother, Aria I am so sorry there was nothing I could do, father's dead. So is Uther though Arthur chose us over his father for reasons that are his own. Both of them will be burned as is tradition for a king in two hours. We'll figure everything else out from there. I am so sorry." Merlin said to his family tears streaming down his face again Hunith held her son as he cried for the loss of his father, Aria ran to Arthur and cried into his chest as held saying how sorry he was. Merlin tears ran dry first and then he saw his sister and Arthur and he realized just how much they had grown to love each other in the short time they had known one another. Merlin walked over to his sister and adopted brother and said "I see now how much you two really care for each other and could not be happier for it." Aria sniffled and looked at her brother saying "I am sorry I did not mean to lose it like that. But I told you I cared told you I cared for Arthur just yesterday." Merlin's eyebrows raised just like his uncles did as he looked at Arthur waiting for an answer Arthur looked at Merlin with a little fear in his eyes as he said "Merlin after everything is settled today I think we need to talk there is something I need to ask you." Merlin nodded and said "alright we'll talk tonight but I have a feeling I already know what you want to talk about." Arthur nodded.
Merlin and his mother talked for the whole time before the burial figuring out a few things and Merlin told his mother just what Arthur had told him about why he chose them and Hunith was astounded at how loyal Arthur was to Merlin and their family.
The burial was started everyone in the city was there for their king and for the royal family no one was really there for Uther. After the prier was started Merlin said loud enough for the whole square to hear "People of Anelya today we lost a king, a father, and friend. But his sacrifice will not be in vain. He died defending me and it was not I who killed Uther it was his son Arthur who killed him because he chose my family over his own and he chose a better future for not his people but us as well. He has told me that we have Camelot as an ally no treaty or anything needed and I have accepted both royal families will be spending three to six months at each other's kingdom at a time to keep ties between friends and newfound loved ones. So today let us honor our king who died defending us and let us honor the new Camelotion king by honoring his father who died at his hand."
All the mourners bowed their heads and said a prayer for their king Merlin said to himself after the initial prayer was done "Rest in peace father, I will strive to be a good king like you were. I will watch over our family and people just as you would have. You were right it is my time to show the world who I really am, and to fulfill my destiny. I will strive to honor your memory father and I won't let you down." Merlin heard Arthur say to Balinor "Balinor you treated me like your own son in two days you knew me. I will do everything I can do undo what my own father has done and I will help Merlin protect both your family and your people as well as my own because Merlin is as a brother to me. I promise you your life will not be forgotten and magic will return to this land and Merlin will not be alone in his fight I swear this to you." soon after all the prayers were said the crowd departed as the prier burnt out.
The rest of the day was spent in mourning for tomorrow would be Merlin's coronation and that was a day for celebrating but today was a day of mourning.
Merlin and Arthur both decided that their conversation could wait till the next morning as Merlin told Arthur that his family was going to mourn together by telling stories of Balinor's life and that Merlin and Hunith wanted Arthur to join them so he could hear some stories about Balinor's life as was considered by all of them as part of the family now.
Tomorrow would be a new dawn for Anelya and soon the starting of the birth of Albion.