But maybe it didn`t matter. As they were, things were comfortable. Merlin got used to a new routine in which magic could be part of everyday life and not just murders and deadly duels. He was able to get used to a quieter life. Maybe. Well, it hadn`t gone quite as planned, Merlin thought as he returned to the bailiff. But it was done, wasn`t it? It was there, all the way out, no more secrets, right? Okay, Arthur had caught the wrong end of the stick a bit, but the main thing was the magic itself, not what Merlin had done with it or had not done. (AKA, the one where Merlin sets up an illegal necromancer and everyone except Arthur is there.) The next morning was no better. Arthur had encouraged Merlin to use magical means to complete his first morning duties, visibly determined to play the benevolent and tolerant ruler, and also inspired by genuine curiosity. In moments like these, Merlin remembered that his friend had rarely seen much magic.
And Merlin was sure he had never seen it used to give his armor a good shine. The magical agreement Uther made for an heir required a lifetime for a lifetime. When it came time to collect, Uther`s own life was taken from him and made Arthur a young king from childhood. When Arthur is twelve, he meets a newcomer to Camelot, a boy named Merlin, who has come to study magic, and they are immediately attracted to each other. It is, after all, their destiny. When Arthur discovered Merlin`s magic, he thought it was the last of Merlin`s secrets. Thinking back on all the strange excuses, the secret trips out of the castle, and the strange wisdom on topics he shouldn`t know, “Wizard” seemed to explain it all. The situation remained the same, even when Merlin began dropping clues – mentions of particularly tricky spells he was trying to master (since the law change, he had been able to get two new thick spell books, which he roamed with an insatiable appetite), or particularly impressive spells he had done in the past.
At first, Merlin thought that Arthur might not believe his stories: after finding excuses to demonstrate particularly difficult techniques to the king, he realized the futility of this tactic. When he first entered Arthur`s service, he looked at the knights on the training ground in amazement, unable to understand why Arthur scolded some much more than others, since they all looked like him. Over time, although he could barely imitate it, he had at least learned what good form looked like, how the best fighters moved more easily, with more balance. But Arthur had none of this magic experience, nothing that would tell him that the fact that Merlin hovering from a dozen different objects while drawing fire into a steep light wasn`t just something anyone could magically tilt to do. He could only understand magic according to context, and if the context was Merlin, it was apparently a clue to interpret everything as humorous but harmless trifles. “Of course not, Merlin. I couldn`t expect you to face the death penalty for a little secret like this. And you know, the most important thing for me to learn about magic is what led us to the law today. Well, that doesn`t define who you are, does it? Just because you can cast spells, Merlin, doesn`t mean you`re not my foolish servant yet, does it? “The heart of the message seems to be that magic is dangerous,” Merlin shrugged.
“Why a wizard tries to deter you from magic is a bit hard to understand, but.. There are other ways they could have done it, so it wouldn`t have been obvious at all, they wanted you to know it was magical, Arthur. Really, there was nothing to be nervous about. Today, he had subconsciously watched the pen scratch the parchment and Arthur had finally signed it. The ban on magic was lifted: witchcraft could again be practiced legally in Camelot. “Well, they did it purple on purpose,” he explained, waving his hands excitedly. “So it was obviously magical. And the way the grains turned overnight, it was pretty obvious too, and when did you ever see something natural that blackened them so completely? Fortunately, they didn`t have to wait long to get results.
Although Merlin`s exploration of spells didn`t yield much – like the ever-burning fire, rotten grains seemed to be a fairly common spell – his research was more fruitful among the city`s mage users. At the moment, there weren`t many of them – one or two who, like him and Gaius, had lived in Camelot, as well as a few others who had arrived since the ban was lifted. The advantage was that the community was quite close and all the newcomers were visible. Two had seen a man they had recognized as a wizard in town the day before – they had known him, as Merlin had discovered with a few lingering questions before the ban was lifted, while he was a major dealer in illegal magical ingredients and materials. “Although it makes me think. Did you use magic to escape your household chores, Merlin?” asked Arthur in a mocking accusing tone. Merlin hides his magic from Arthur, even after the magic is accepted in Camelot, and an extremely whipped and constipated gay Merthur tries to understand himself once Merlin`s magic and Arthur`s fear are revealed. “So, Merlin,” Arthur said, breaking the silence, “I understand that I have to reconsider some of the assumptions I`ve made about your magical abilities.” “Yes, I`m sure,” Merlin sighed. He could feel the magic in the grains themselves, brittle and dark, and feel them in the too pure air. “It was really magical and a spell powerful enough to conquer the whole store so quickly.” Arthur frowned. “Good.
Me, uh. Merlin took a deep breath. “I can do magic. I mean, I`m a magician. Merlin wasn`t sure if this quite fit the standards of the confessions he had imagined as he repeated the conversation in his head over the past few days, but. Well, at least it has been done. “Hey, a little less nostalgia for the bad old days, please,” Merlin smiled. “I`ll try to figure out what happened to this, maybe it will give us a clue. And I can ask around with the other magic users in town to see if they have any ideas. Arthur raised an eyebrow. Arthur had also been more thoughtful this morning: while the night before he had been filled with the passing of the law and the meaning of the occasion, today he was back on earth and asked Merlin questions about how he had learned, how he had kept it secret.
but there was no clue that Merlin could have used as an excuse to tell him. Tell him what exactly, Merlin was still not quite sure. He understood what kind of wizard he wasn`t – no matter what Arthur thought he was – but he realized he had no idea how to put words to what he was. Maybe Gaius was right, maybe it was something he should show Arthur instead of telling him. He found her in his bedroom, where she proved to be a better audience than Arthur, quickly connecting Merlin`s secret to a number of magical events in recent years, and capturing his surprise with each new story Merlin told. However, when he explained some of the more morally ambiguous episodes, his expression was gloomy. In the market, stalls appeared selling charms and amulets or beers with dubious magical medicinal properties. Gaius had tentatively asked a patient for the first time if he would agree to try a magic cure, as the more secular remedies had not succeeded. And still nothing had changed with Arthur. “So you`re not a little wizard?” Arthur pushed Merlin. Once the demonstrations were over, Arthur had of course quickly followed up on his words from the previous day and given Merlin a double portion of the household chores as promised.
Which meant that Merlin`s status as a newly legalized wizard probably wouldn`t be silent for long, as doing everything would have to at least mean figuring out how to magically clean the stables. And so, before Merlin started his long to-do list, he looked for Gwen. He had hidden this secret from her for a long time – she deserved to know before it became the chatboard.