Log in

No account? Create an account

Previous Entry | Next Entry

Title: Fit For a King
Author: kepp0xy
Characters/Pairings: Arthur/Gwen, Merlin
Rating/Genre: G; fluff, some romance, some angst
Spoilers/Warnings: vague reference to events in 2.02
Summary: Gwen starts giving Arthur things. Though generally small and innocuous, the habit is beginning to trouble him.

Author's note: For the holidays, I offered my f-list a card or a fic, and misseri44 opted for fic. Her prompt was simple: "fluff," of which this has an abundance. Not really a Christmas fic, but Christmas inspired, and there's gift giving which is a holiday theme, so I'm hoping I can sneak it into the holiday crack party ;D Huge thanks to mancalahour for the beta read & title ♥!

There wasn't any change to how things appeared. Not at first.

Merlin, of course, commented on the shift in his demeanour, making not-so-subtle hints that he wondered if it had something to do with a certain woman with penchant for flowers, purple, and soft smiles who he had come across near Arthur's chambers an astounding number of times recently.

Arthur, of course, commented that if Merlin intended to spend most of winter inside and not out, that he ought to cease all speculation.

But with spring, the visual changes began.

Nothing big and obvious; she would never risk that. But when he awoke one morning, there was a small white flower in a simple glass vase sitting neatly in the centre of his bedside table. Before the jolt of pleasure that she had been in his rooms in the night had faded into a permeating warmth, Merlin nearly knocked it over. Arthur lunged forwards, capturing the flower and vase just before they toppled to a crash on the floor.

"What's that?" Merlin asked in surprise. Before Arthur could answer, Merlin had bent double to take a look. "A flower? I didn't know you were so... Sentimental, sire."

Arthur just managed to refrain from using Merlin's head as leverage to get out of bed. "Leave it be," he ordered crisply, all the while taking the utmost care in setting it exactly where it had been prior to Merlin's clumsiness.

Arthur ignored Merlin's chuckled, "Okay."

Summer meant heavy blankets disappeared to be replaced with thin sheets. But Arthur returned one night after an irritating day of meetings with his knights to discover a lightweight knit spread at the foot of his bed.

Warmth at the gesture spread fast, easing much of the tension from his shoulders. He walked over to it, lifting the corner to finger the material. She was gifted, his Gwen, having laced the subtle purples she favoured through the Pendragon red and gold.

"I'll take care of myself tonight, Merlin," he muttered distractedly, barely registering Merlin's skeptical, "Really? ... All right."

He had thought the blanket would be the last of them, but the small gifts kept appearing. There were dried flowers, and little trinkets (a dragon and sword crafted from some flimsy material that Arthur may shatter beneath his touch). The weather began to turn cold again, and he discovered beside his hearth an array of herbs, to scent the fires with, in a simple vase.

It was getting to be too much; where once his heart warmed at each gesture, it now panged for being unable to reciprocate. And, though far lower on his scale of worries, his rooms were beginning to look distressingly feminine.

"Merlin, would you mention to Gwen that I'll be gone all day today?" Arthur asked one morning as he ate breakfast. At Merlin's silence, Arthur looked up. "What?"

Merlin's brow quirked. "But you aren't going to be out at all today."

"I know that, Merlin. I just need Gwen not to - you know what? I don't have to explain myself to you. Fetch the treaties I'm meant to look over and tell my father I ate some bad pork and will be down for the day. Insist he doesn't come see me, though."

Managing only to stop Merlin's bitter mumblings and huffed scoffs by dismissing him, Arthur found himself alone, and doubting his prediction, as the sun began to set. But just after Arthur had lit the final candle, setting it on the table close to his reading, he heard his door scraping across the ground as it opened slowly.

He looked up quickly, swallowing down all manner of emotions at her appearance.

Gwen's head was tipped down as she smiled gently, watching her fingers as she pushed leaves one way, tucking berries beneath them the next. So lost to her thoughts that she hadn't even realised he was there, Arthur was loathe to break her concentration when she appeared so contented.

He was a fool, he knew, to just keep watching her, but there was no ignoring how captivating she was; she carried with her a sincerity of spirit that seemed to imbue anything around her with a glow. He could watch her forever.

But he cleared his throat quietly, and smiled in gentle amusement as she jumped, head snapping up, before she threw her arms - and her gift - behind her back.

"Arthur! Merlin said you'd be gone for much of the day..." She trailed off, surveying the scatter of scrolls around him and the half-eaten lunch in the middle of the table. Her nose scrunched slightly before she met his gaze again. "It looks like you haven't left the room."

"I haven't," he admitted, quickly pressing on when Gwen raised an eyebrow questioningly. "What have you got behind your back?"

Wide-eyes; a brief purse of lips; a slight nervous glance towards her shoulder. "Um, nothing," she said, taking a step back as he rose.

"Guinevere, you are a terrible liar."

"Thank you, sire," she said, eyes sparkling mischief up at him as he walked towards her. "But I am telling you that it's nothing."

He stopped just before her, and eyed her closely. "Does nothing now mean something to do with holly and berries?" he asked, biting back a chuckle as her eyes grew wider.

Gwen watched him for a moment before breathing out a sigh. "All right," she said, slowly bringing her hands forwards and tipping their treasure for him to see. "Donegal had spares after his wife adorned their home and offered them to me," she explained, eyes now focused on the wreath. "I know it's just a silly thing, but I thought you may like it."

And the truth was, he did. But he could accept no more gifts from her.

"Gwen," he began gently, carefully extricating the delicate wreath from her fingers. "I treasure each thing you've given me, but you've got to stop." He dropped her gaze briefly as he placed the woven holly and berries on the table beside him.

When he looked at her face again, she was watching him cautiously. "If you don't like what I've been giving you, you've only got to say so," she said. Though Arthur strained to hear if there was hurt in her tone, she maintained a voice too neutral for him to decipher it.

He shook his head and crossed his arms over his chest, leaning back against the table. "No, I spoke honestly when I said I treasure them," he responded firmly, trying to look earnest and holding her gaze until her expression relaxed. "But I... It troubles me that I can do nothing to return the gestures."

"I have no need of anything," replied Gwen immediately, shaking her head.

"And you believe there is something you have that I lack?" he asked simply.

She stiffened. It was a division he found interesting in his most impartial moments, and aggravating in his most emotional. Arthur did not consider their class difference any longer; not when they were alone. In his mind, they came together simply as Arthur and Guinevere, and sometimes wandered into territory he viewed as a glimpse of the future: future rulers, king and queen.

But sometimes the line was still drawn for her. In comments he made, which he believed innocuous, unprejudiced, would awaken some sensitivity in her that he struggled to fully comprehend.

"My lord, I only thought to brighten your rooms, but if I've offended you by presuming -

"Ah, Guinevere..." He leaned forwards, capturing one of the hands she held as fists at her side. "I'm sorry, that isn't what I meant."

She fell silent, staring at his chest, before she licked her lips and raised her gaze. "What's the problem, then?" she asked, almost timid.

"I could dress you in the winter cloak of a queen," he murmured, praying she would not take offence. "Seal each blustering crack in the walls of your home, and re-thatch your roof. I could make it so that you never had to cook a chicken again; that each piece of meat on your dinner table was prepared by castle staff - don't look at me like that, I remember exactly the look of enjoyment on your face when we had dinner together. I could give you so much, Guinevere, and yet am incapable of giving you anything because it all lacks subtlety."

Gwen watched him, unfathomable, before a slight smile tugged at the corners of her mouth, signifying to him how touched she was. She swallowed, and blinked slowly, before lifting her brows expectantly. "Is that all?" she whispered.

"Well," he said, keeping his feelings of relief absolutely hidden. "And my chambers are starting to look a little bit... girly."

Her eyes widened, and danced, and her lips twitched and then blossomed into a grand smile that suddenly released joyful peels of laughter.

He waited with a crooked smile, watching her laugh, and with each shake of her body from a giggle, he felt her hand tremble in the confines of his. Finally she raised her free hand to brush beneath her eyes.

"I didn't realise," she said quietly, wiggling her fingers against his hand. "That it was such a masculine room to begin with."

"What's that supposed to mean?" Arthur asked, affronted. "This is ... was an extremely masculine room. I have a collection of helmets in here." He indicated the collection, which he suddenly noticed had a fine layer of dust over top. Merlin would have extra duties tomorrow.

"And helmets prove masculinity?" she asked, very serious. Arthur had the distinct impression Gwen was teasing him. He couldn't decide how he felt about that.

"It's not the helmets themselves, it's the... Well, it's the..." He trailed off, studying the dull shine of his collection. He glanced back at her, finding a fond smile upon her lips as she watched him expectantly. "I wouldn't expect you - a girl - to understand," he finally said petulantly.

Her smile grew, and he almost jumped as her palm landed against his chest and he watched wide eyed as she rose to her toes. Her lips were soft and light against his jaw, though their fleeting touch left his skin feeling hot.

Arthur swallowed thickly once she'd landed back on her heels. They rarely ever indulged in physical caresses, let alone kisses; hand-holding was the most he could expect. It just seemed to them that indulging in behaviour better suited to a betrothed couple (though, for all intents and purposes, that was exactly what they were) defied their agreed convention to wait for one another.

And, to Arthur's thinking at least, it would make waiting infinitely more difficult. He was already haunted enough by the stolen kisses and embraces they shared when the distance all became too much.

So, rather than reaching for Gwen, slipping one hand into her hair and the other firmly around her waist before kissing her until she couldn't tell up from down, Arthur cleared his throat as she tilted her head. Her smile was knowing - and a little inviting, though he resolutely ignored the invitation - as she watched him compose himself.

"Right," he said.

"Yes," Gwen replied. As he continued to flounder for what exactly to say next, her smile flashed brighter before disappearing as her expression became more serious. "So, no more gifts."

"For now," he agreed with a stern nod. Gwen nodded in return and pulled her hand free from his. "You have to go?" he asked, disappointed as she started to move away from him.

Nodding, Gwen said, "I told Morgana I'd only be a few minutes, and well..."

"You've already been longer than that," Arthur said with a heavy sigh.

"Yes," Gwen agreed. Then she paused, watching him. It caused a strong sense of longing to build up inside of him, no matter how foolish the sentiment was. But then she nodded, in a way that suggested she was clearing her mind, before saying softly, "Good night, Arthur."

"Good night, Guinevere," he replied as she turned away. She was almost at the door when something occurred to him. "Uh, Gwen?" he called.

She turned back to face him, looking a little wary which amused him. "Yes?"

"There's one thing I hope you won't stop giving," he said slowly. He felt suddenly a little self-conscious as she stared at him, waiting for him to continue. "Your tokens," he mumbled, feeling a flush burn across his cheeks. It was not that he felt he needed the luck, but only that every time she presented him with a scrap of cloth, she was as sweet and bashful as the first time. He didn't ever want that ritual to end. "I wouldn't want you to stop giving those."

Gwen ducked her head, but Arthur was too far away to be able to tell if she was blushing, too. "Not even if you commanded it," she murmured, before hurrying through the door.


( 51 comments — Leave a comment )
Page 1 of 2
<<[1] [2] >>
Dec. 2nd, 2009 03:57 pm (UTC)
AWWWWWWWWWWWWWWW!!!!! Gosh, these two! They make my heart melt! Lovely story! :)
Dec. 3rd, 2009 01:51 am (UTC)
They are ridiculously sweet, aren't they? I'm so glad you enjoyed ♥
Dec. 2nd, 2009 04:07 pm (UTC)


I loved how he actually told Merlin what to tell his father this time... saed him from the stocks again <3
Dec. 3rd, 2009 01:53 am (UTC)
haha, yes, it's about time that Arthur didn't have Merlin always taking one for the team. Thanks for the comment!
Dec. 2nd, 2009 04:17 pm (UTC)
AW. Oh my gosh. SO CUTE. This is why I don't want to go to class anymore, gahh. If I wrote down every single thing I loved about it I'd end up quoting the whole fic. So let's just say that I adored the whole bit about Gwen giving Arthur her small gifts and making his oh-so-masculine room, heaven-forbid, girly, and that even in the end, he still wants her tokens. I love the idea that she would still continue giving him tokens. Guh. Now I just want to rewatch 2x02. ♥
Dec. 3rd, 2009 01:57 am (UTC)
♥! I thought it would be interesting to explore the situation around Gwen giving the gifts, as I've read a few fics where Arthur gives her things, so I'm glad it worked for you. And of course - Arthur must preserve whatever masculinity he can. He now thinks in mixed eagerness and trepidation of what their shared chambers will look like once they're married.

And as if any of us ever needs an excuse to rewatch 202 ;D

Thanks so much for the lovely comment!
(no subject) - misseri44 - Dec. 3rd, 2009 11:23 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - kepp0xy - Dec. 5th, 2009 12:01 am (UTC) - Expand
Dec. 2nd, 2009 04:18 pm (UTC)
I loved it! You had the banter right down. I loved that she was giving him gifts, and he said what he could offer, and thing about his room not being masculine enough. Loved the last few lines too :D

Oh, I thought I'd add that you didn't leave a link in the futurequeen post, at least not one I could see ^ ^
Dec. 3rd, 2009 01:58 am (UTC)
I'm so glad you enjoyed it, thanks for the lovely comment.

And thank you for that head's up! I got your message at work and ~~stealthily~~ logged on to edit the post, so thank you ♥
Dec. 2nd, 2009 04:26 pm (UTC)
love it, so so much =D.
Dec. 3rd, 2009 01:58 am (UTC)
I'm very glad :]!
Dec. 2nd, 2009 04:41 pm (UTC)

I adored this. And yes - even though I wanted Arthur to kiss her senseless, I loved that you didn't go there. So much more right and true to their characters and the show.

And, of course, I loved the banter with Merlin x
Dec. 3rd, 2009 02:16 am (UTC)
Restraint, thy name is Arthur&Gwen. I'm glad you felt that Arthur not kissing her rang true to them, as temptation was skyhigh to have them snog the evening away ;)

Thank you for the lovely comment & I'm very happy you enjoyed ♥!
Dec. 2nd, 2009 05:57 pm (UTC)

How many times can I tell you how perfect I think your characterization is before you get tired of hearing it?

I've already told you my favorite bits, but I don't think I said how much I enjoy the Merlin and Arthur banter as well, which is another thing you do gloriously.
Dec. 3rd, 2009 03:38 am (UTC)

Lalala, I don't think being told characterization is good is something that could ever get old. It's always a huge compliment. But if you keep giving it, I'll get a complex: fearing for the day the words don't come... @_o**!!!

Of course, am absolutely glad you liked it. And, because I know you love hearing me say it (it's always true, mind you): thanks again for your help, bb.
(Deleted comment)
Dec. 3rd, 2009 03:39 am (UTC)
Thank you so much!
Dec. 2nd, 2009 08:30 pm (UTC)
I love how natural your Arthur/Merlin scenes are. It feels like it could happen on screen written by the writers themselves.

Now for the main event:

So, so incredibly cute. I like that there's still that tension/barrier between them, even though it's light and fluffy and cute and all femininingArthur'sotherwisequestionablymasculineroom-ness. Very, very cute. Loved it!
Dec. 3rd, 2009 03:42 am (UTC)
Thank you! The boys are fun to write, and it's great to hear that it felt natural XD And of course, I'm so very glad you enjoyed the Arthur/Gwen parts. As for Arthur's room... I think he confuses "bland" with "masculine" (Gwen agrees with me ;)
Dec. 2nd, 2009 09:09 pm (UTC)
That was so beautiful, Arthur and Gwen are just adorable and sweet. Thank you so much...:)
Dec. 3rd, 2009 03:43 am (UTC)
Aren't they just? ♥ Thanks so much for reading!
Dec. 2nd, 2009 09:46 pm (UTC)
Aww... very lovely.
Dec. 3rd, 2009 03:43 am (UTC)
Cheers & glad you enjoyed!
Dec. 2nd, 2009 10:12 pm (UTC)
Daaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaawwwwwwwwwwwwwwww Kelly! You never ceases to amaze me with your writing. God woman you are soooo gifted! I LOVE this so much!! Oh my heart! Thank you Kelly! You know I've read ALL your AG fics and I love them all.

this part made me giggle:

I could make it so that you never had to cook a chicken again;

What is it with Arthur and chicken? hahahaha
Dec. 3rd, 2009 03:46 am (UTC)
ROFLLLL. I think Arthur associates chicken with love & romance now; his dinner with Gwen has accidentally set the bar. One day, she'll ask why their dinner is always chicken, and Arthur will have to face the facts, but for now we'll let him believe that chicken dinner = romantic.

I'm glad you enjoyed this, bb. Your comments always make me smile ♥
Dec. 2nd, 2009 11:15 pm (UTC)
TOO CUTE!!!! Arthur and Gwen are so ADORABLE! I loved how he refers to her as 'his Gwen' and that in his mind, they are practically engaged! He is such a romantic. Thank you for such a lovely fic!
Dec. 3rd, 2009 03:47 am (UTC)
They are ridiculously sweet together, aren't they? And definitely Arthur is romantic, in an accidental sort of way that he'll never admit ;D Thanks for the kind words!
(no subject) - mattyroh07 - Dec. 5th, 2009 09:24 am (UTC) - Expand
Dec. 2nd, 2009 11:27 pm (UTC)
Awww! That was so lovely and sweet. I love the idea of Gwen leaving him gifts ^_^
Dec. 3rd, 2009 03:49 am (UTC)
I liked the idea, too! I thought it would be interesting to explore the situation around Gwen giving the gifts, as I've read a few fics where Arthur gives her things, so I'm glad it worked for you. Thank you so much for reading!
Dec. 3rd, 2009 12:53 am (UTC)

I love them so much!!! This was completely adorable. Definitely my favorite Arthur/Gwen story ever.
Dec. 3rd, 2009 03:49 am (UTC)
Thank you! I'm so glad you enjoyed this ♥
Page 1 of 2
<<[1] [2] >>
( 51 comments — Leave a comment )


A/G made special for meeee &lt;3

Latest Month

November 2011


Powered by LiveJournal.com
Designed by phuck