They spend the winter studying, and practising, and sorting out the bumps and unexpected challenges brought about by their new reality. When spring comes, Arthur and Merlin ride out with their small band of knights, with Morgana and Gwen, on a grand tour of Albion. They return at the end of the summer without Gwaine, who has stayed behind in Essetir as that country’s new King.
The next Ostara, Merlin’s baby sister is born, and his parents return to the university for good.
Ten years later, all of Albion is united, and envoys from Eire and France have come, asking for Merlin’s Peace and the Pax Drakonis. That year, Merlin’s first child is born, and Arthur’s second.
Thirty years on, and it is obvious to Merlin and Arthur that Arthur is not aging, though they fake it, both of them. Their children are of age, and the world is nothing like Merlin has ever seen, and like nothing Arthur could have imagined; a strange mix of science and magic, technology and witchcraft that work together.
The library yields new secrets daily, but those who study the library itself suggest that it may be several hundred years before the contents are truly understood.
Physical violence is unthinkable to the younger generation. Competitive urges have been satisfied with sport, but even there, the hardest attacks are with words. Arthur’s throne becomes an elected position, mostly symbolic. The populace elects him by a landslide every time.
Fifty years after the first signatures on the Pax, Merlin and Arthur “disappear”, shedding their age and venturing out into the wider world.
They watch the world together—sometimes in it, sometimes retreating from it—for a thousand years, before she comes to them again.
“You’ve done well, Merlin,” Zaira says. “And you, Arthur. The world thrives. Balance is achieved. Peace reigns.”
“It’s gotten a bit dull,” Arthur says. “No enemies to fight, they’re all on our side. There is no other side.”
She grins. “I might have another adventure for you both, if you’re done here.”
Merlin looks at Arthur, “I’ll go with you.”
“As if I’d ever go without you,” Arthur says. “I promised.”