Disclaimer: I do not own Merlin BBC.
Merlin was terrified. He stood next to the legs of his guardian and listened as the king announced the death of the queen to the entire court. He looked over at his best friend who was sunk in his grand chair next to where the king stood straight backed and proud. Merlin felt very impoverish looking at the regal dress of his friend for the first time in his young life, but mostly it was the king’s shimmering robes that brought that out of him. His own basic clothes were enough for him, but even Gaius wore colorful robes to this event. The younger boy could see the grief in both of the monarch’s face. A few started to sob in the crowd as the king continued with his announcement. Merlin didn’t understand where his fear was coming from, but it settled deep into the pit of his stomach.
“It has been determined that magic was the weapon used to kill my wife,” the king ground out. His eyes leveled with Gaius and Merlin looked up to see the sadness reflected in that gaze. “Her funeral will be in two days’ time. The accused will be executed tomorrow at dawn. Everyone is dismissed!” People started to clamor out of the large meeting room.
Merlin turned to leave when a hand held him back. He looked up to see Gaius still not moving and still having a staring match with their lord. In the corner of their eyes, Arthur moved from his chair to go to his best friend. He swallowed a few times during his walk down the steps of the thrones, but couldn’t hold back anymore when he collapsed into a hug by the little black haired boy.
“Gauis,” the king summoned the man over to where he still sat. The physician walked over and bowed slightly to his king before waiting for him to speak again. “Gauis, magic killed my wife. Could there have been anything she could have done to prevent it?”
“Magic can really only be fought with magic, sire,” he hesitated before adding, “I don’t know if we could prevent any death from happening. It is a horrible tragedy.”
The king looked over at the children. “If magic didn’t exist, my wife would still be here today,” his eyes hardened as they locked with the blue eyes of the smallest boy. Merlin quickly looked away and hugged onto Arthur tighter. “I need to protect my son, now,” he whispered.
“Sire, I don’t think…” Gauis started to protest.
“Gauis, friend, make me a promised from this day forth,” the king turned steel eyes to the other man. “No magic will be done in this place ever again. You will not perform another spell, ritual or incantation. You will not use another artifact.” Fear came to the physician’s eyes but he nodded. “I will announce it at the funeral. Anyone caught doing sorcery will be put to death. It is the only way to stop this evil from spreading.”
“Sire, it was one…”
“It was my WIFE!” the king bellowed. In the corner the candles blew out from a wind that came from nowhere as Merlin squeaked in fear. Both boys held each other tightly and the eyes of the older monarch turned back to the children. “That one…” he pointed to his son’s best friend.
“He cannot stop himself, your highness. He is very young and was born with…” Gaius tried to defend the child.
“Then he is a monster, a devil, that needs to be sent back to where he belongs,” the king started to march over to the frightened children.
“Please, Uther, don’t do this! I will teach him to not use it. Just as you trust me to not use mine, I will teach him to not use his,” Gaius followed after the king until he stopped next to the quivering youngsters.
The graying haired man stared at the young boy who was doing his best not to look at him. His son unlatched himself and turned eyes that mimicked his mother’s own toward the king. They were a challenge, but still hopeful and young. Turning away from the children the king ordered, “Erase my son’s memories of magic in this place before the law is set and lock that thing away until he can be useful to my son and not be a monster.” He turned to storm from the room, but before he left completely he said without turning, “If I see him before he can control it, Gaius, I will do what is needed to ensure my kingdom is safe.”
Merlin didn’t understand what had just happened. He turned to his guardian with questions wanting to fly off his tongue, but Gaius didn’t hesitate to take both boys by their arms and escort them back to his chambers.
As he shut and locked the door the two boys stood side by side now with fear again gripping their hearts. “Merlin, go to your room. I’ll talk with you in a little bit,” he ordered the little boy. The child took off up the stairs and shut the door quickly as if the hounds of hell were on his heels. “Arthur,” he lowered himself to look into the sea blue eyes of his young prince, “I have to do this because your father asked me to, but I’m not going to take all of your memories of Merlin away from you. I think having a friend will be very important for you.”
He gently put his hands on either side of the blond boy’s head and closed his eyes as he said, “Tóg an draíocht as a chuimhne. Fág gach duine eile.” Behind his lids his eyes flashed a bright gold and the boy collapsed into the man’s arms.
A few hours later the door to Merlin’s room opened up to find the young boy lighting and extinguishing his candle next to his bed over and over again with a wave of a young hand. “Merlin,” Gaius sighed. The boy let the candle go out and he looked up to his foster father.
“Where is Arthur?” he asked.
“He is sleeping off the charm I had to use on him,” the physician sat down on the small wood slat bed. “You won’t be able to play with him for a while. I don’t even know if it is possible, but you will need to learn not to use your magic…”
“I’ll die!” Merlin cried out. The doors to his clothing dresser swung open and crashed against the wood wall. He stood up and balled his fists at his side as tears fell from his eyes. “I can’t stop using magic! I’ll die!”
“Merlin!” Gaius scolded. His eyes softened though as he watched the young boy cry. He sighed, “Merlin, you just need to learn to control it. Until you can the king has banished you to these chambers. You need to stay in your room if someone is in the main room, but I’ll be here for you. You won’t be alone.” The boy sniffled as large arms engulfed him, his hair was smoothed down from the back and the promise was repeated, “You won’t be alone.”