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I stepped out of time and landed in your lap

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o-oOo-o

Arthur awakes already annoyed; his body so finely tuned to his lover it feels his absence even in sleep. Grumbling, Arthur gropes blindly for any evidence of how far Merlin has gone, face still pressed into his pillow in his unwillingness to face something as foul as morning alone. When the sheets prove to have gone cold, however, Arthur opens his eyes if only to glare at the empty pillow beside him. He thought he'd dealt with this properly already; it would seem Merlin will need yet another reminder why it is not a good idea to leave the King's bed before the King is well ready to allow him to.

Making further disgruntled noises, Arthur pokes his head up and surveys his rooms, blearily searching for his insolent bedmate but finding his quarters unacceptably empty. He'd been promised a proper wake-up last night, and waking up to anything short of a sleepy-warm and dazed Merlin is simply not acceptable. Determined to set things straight, Arthur pushes himself up, kicks off his sheets, and swings his legs over the edge to get off the bed.

"You better not make me look for you," Arthur mutters, standing up and walking over naked to fetch a clean pair of breeches. He doesn’t bother with any underthings or even a tunic, he simply intends to stick his head out the door and demand a search party for his wayward sorcerer if must be. Just as he's making to cross the room, however, his doors are flung open and said sorcerer is backing inside with a tray full of food.

Arthur frowns, wondering petulantly if this was Merlin's idea of a proper wake-up. He might have acted too soon, missing waking up for a breakfast shared in bed, but no, surely Merlin could've just called for a servant and then come back to bed? Arthur watches Merlin's tongue stick out in concentration as he turns and kicks the doors shut, eyes focused on the tray in his hand to keep it steady. Arthur smiles fondly, his irritation subdued for the moment, and crosses his arms over his chest as he waits for his lover to acknowledge him. Merlin sets the tray down on the table, turning around to make his way over to the bed, no doubt planning to wake Arthur up with soft, teasing kisses. It’s only now he sees Arthur, and Arthur is glad the tray is no longer in his hands, because Merlin startles with a yelp and clutches his hand to his chest like a faint maiden. Arthur can’t help but chuckle.

“Really, Merlin,” he tuts, grinning while shaking his head. He allows his eyes to wander and is disappointed to see that old neckerchief in place, hiding the marks he’d worked so diligently on last night. He notes Merlin is back in his old rags as well, for some reason, and frowns as the first stirrings of concern interrupts his inspection of a flushed, startled Merlin. “Whatever are you wearing, Merlin? Has something come up?”

His lover looks puzzled, having gathered himself now, though he seems thrown off from the rant he was no doubt building up to in his mind before Arthur spoke. “Um,” he says, titling his head as Arthur comes closer. “No? Just...I was down in the stables?” Here Merlin wrinkles his nose, making Arthur grin, because there, that’s the adorable face he’d been looking forward to greeting him. “Not all of us change clothes every time a piece of mud gets stuck somewhere, you know.”

Arthur rolls his eyes and motions for Merlin to sit, watching with amusement as he goes to set the table instead. “Really Merlin, only you would roll out of bed to go down and spoil my horses,” he drawls, walking up behind the younger man with smooth, quiet steps. “They’re bred to be fierce, brave and strong steeds meant for war, not docile pets to snuffle your ears.”

He’s crowded up behind Merlin now; gripping the edge of the table with his hands on either side of Merlin’s hips, and steps in as close as he can. Merlin’s back is curved into Arthur chest and his delightful rump is a warm pressure against Arthur’s growing arousal. Arthur breathes deep and steady, nosing in behind one of those ridiculous ears to bask in the warm scent of his lover. He can detect the sharp smell of horse and straw from his worn clothes, the smoke and herbs from his potions, and the earthy musk that is purely Merlin. Humming in content, Arthur allows his hips to rock against Merlin’s bottom, grinding his hardening length in slow, lazy movements that has Merlin tensing up against him and letting out a strangled moan.

“Arthur,” he breathes, titling his head to bare his neck, and Arthur makes a noise of approval before descending on it with lips, teeth and tongue. The neckerchief is still in the way, but the skin just behind and below his ear is vulnerable and free for Arthur’s attentions. His teeth capture a piece in a light bite, his lips closing around it to seal it in the wet heat of his mouth before he sucks, not letting up even as Merlin writhers in his arms. As always, he is so sensitive there, and Arthur doesn’t stop until his moans are breaking apart. He leaves several purple and red marks behind, so many they seep into one in places, and reaches down to cup Merlin’s stiff cock through his breeches.

“Come to bed, darling,” Arthur whispers against the skin he’s been suckling, kneading his hand around Merlin’s cock and giving a suggestive thrust of his hips to further entice his lover to bed. Not that Merlin needs much persuasion, most of the time, but Arthur is still slightly put off from waking up alone and finding him clad like this instead of naked with him.

Finally,” Merlin groans, much to Arthur’s amusement, before he’s arching his back and rubbing his little bottom against Arthur’s cock. It makes him growl playfully, and he nips Merlin’s ear, before reluctantly dragging himself away so he can steer them back to bed. Merlin goes easily, shaky with need and wide-eyed in lust. A spark of excitement settles low in Arthur’s stomach, reacting to Merlin’s responsiveness this morning. It’s a delightful mood his lover finds himself in at times; needy and desperate to spread his legs for Arthur if he’s not pushing him down to ride him until Arthur’s a swearing mess underneath him.

Now, Merlin seems almost afraid that Arthur will leave, which is ridiculous, but he’s clinging hard to Arthur’s hand and pulling him down onto the bed with him. Arthur settles comfortably between Merlin’s spread legs, pushing their hard cocks together, and blanket’s the younger man’s body with his own. In response, Merlin whimpers, shivering underneath him and the black of his eyes has swallowed the blue until there’s just a sliver of it left. Arthur rocks against him and bends down to capture his lips, surprised at the sloppy, messy kiss he gets in return. Merlin must be far gone; farther than he usually is this early on, which means he must have worked himself up all morning for this. Meaning he started without him.

“Naught boy,” he growls, having slipped a hand into Merlin’s messy hair to yank his head back enough to arch his pale, lovely throat so Arthur can nip at the skin. Merlin shivers, a strangled noise of enjoyment ripped from him as Arthur licks a stripe up his throat and across his chin, lapping teasingly at Merlin’s parted lips to taste the mess of saliva left from their kiss. Straining, Merlin tries to capture his mouth but Arthur still has a good grip on his hair and tugs in warning, chuckling when it earns him a whine. Merlin still mouths at his tongue as it swipes across his lips, and Arthur teases for a moment more before he dips into that wet heat and muffles the sound of his own moan.

“I’m going suck you off,” Arthur pants when he ends the kiss, tugging at Merlin’s hair again to get him to open his eyes. Long, dark lashes flutter against pale skin as his lover blinks him into focus and Arthur can’t resist pressing soft, gentle kisses beneath each beautiful eye. “Then I’m going to play with your nipples and kiss you raw until you’re hard again. Then I’ll lick you; fuck you with my fingers until you’re open and pliant for me. You’ll take my cock so good then, won’t you darling?”

Fuck,” Merlin swears, staring up at him wide-eyed and desperate, before frantically starting to attempt unclothing them both with hands and flashes of golden, warm magic that crackles like lightning. “Fuck, Arthur, I need you. Gods, I need you now.”

Groaning, Arthur levers himself up to help the process along, feeling his cock twitch desperately in response to Merlin’s eager, fumbling hands grabbing him all over. He’s only got his breeches on, for which he is thankful because they’re the first to go, but Merlin’s ridiculous get-up is more of a frustration. First to go is the neckerchief, and he feels a spark of annoyance when he notes the absence of his marks from last night. He hates it when Merlin heals them over and Arthur decides to bite a necklace of bruises in retaliation. But first, he needs Merlin naked, so he rips off the scratchy tunic without even bothering to untie the belt, enjoying the hiss of annoyance it gets him as he yanks it over Merlin’s head and off his arms. Then he does need to deal with the belt, and the laces, before slithering down Merlin’s body to tug breeches, shoes and socks off in one go. He perfected the art of undressing his lover years ago, though he’s a bit rusty with these old clothes from a time when they were servant and prince. That thought gives him pause and he wonders, for a moment, if perhaps there was a reason to why Merlin came dressed like this. At first he had assumed Merlin had changed into them for the stables, but maybe... A wicked grin spreads on Arthur’s lips and he gazes hotly at his panting lover from under his lashes, watching him squirm and blush. It almost looks like he wants to cover himself, like he’s unsure. No, not unsure...untried.

A bolt of lust strikes Arthur at the thought, making him moan and bend down to bury his face in the sharp jut of Merlin’s hip. He never set out to know who took Merlin’s innocence, not wanting to dwell on it because he knows his own nature, and it’s a possessive and petty one when it comes to things that are his. It can be ugly and he tries his best to rein it in, especially when it comes to Merlin, but sometimes... Well, sometimes he just can’t. For the most part, Merlin is lightly annoyed but mostly amused by it, though this is a subject Arthur had never dared to push on because Merlin has such strong feelings on certain subjects and shaming those who aren’t virgins is one of them. He’d once given a visiting young lord boils for jeering at a poor unmarried woman big with child, and glared with great disappointment whenever any of the knights toed that line. So for Merlin to be acting this coy, as shy as a blushing maiden on a wedding night, and in his old clothes! It sets Arthur on fire, this staged set-up for taking Merlin for the first time, of being the first.

Growling, Arthur bites at the vulnerable flesh of Merlin’s belly, noting as always that his lover is far too skinny, before he dives down to swallow his leaking cock down to the root. Merlin shouts out in shocked pleasure, curling into himself until he’s almost sitting up, and buries his hands in Arthur’s hair. Swallowing around the cockhead, Arthur savours the hard length before pulling off, leaving a mess of saliva behind as he settles with just the tip enclosed between his lips while his tongue teases drops of salty fluid to leak into his mouth.

“Fuck, Arthur, that’s...oh gods, don’t stop, please,” Merlin whimpers, tugging at Arthur’s hair and jerking his hips uncontrollably. Pinning him down with an arm across his hips, Arthur dips down to take in more once again, breathing in carefully through his nose before swallowing down Merlin’s twitching cock again, and again, and again, until Merlin is a sobbing mess. It doesn’t take long for him to come, all arching and stiff, his shout of startled pleasure wrangled from him as Arthur seeks out all the sensitive spots with lips, tongue and teeth. The thick, salty mess of hot fluid which floods his mouth is easily swallowed, though Arthur lets some of it escape because he knows how much Merlin enjoys seeing the thin trail of white run down Arthur’s chin so he can smear it over his lips and lick it off.  Right now, though, his powerful sorcerer is a panting mess; hands flexing in Arthur’s hair still, and eyes wide and unfocused as he stares blankly at the ceiling. The power Arthur feels in moments like these are akin to putting on his crown some days; frightening, but right. Something to work for, to be deserving of, but something he knows bone deep that he is born to wield. It never fails to be exhilarating, although it is sometimes like holding a newborn by the edge of a cliff; scared stiff that you will drop it, knowing you’d jump right after it anyway.

“Arthur,” Merlin whimpers, catching his full attention from where he’s been licking Merlin’s cock clean of excess come and saliva. He feels him tug at his hair, a demand he knows means to come to him, and so he goes; crawling up Merlin’s body to soothe the still shaky mess of his lover. Merlin’s breath catches, and he stares at Arthur with wide, amazed eyes; honest and so, so sweet. “Oh,” he breathes, hiccupping on a sob, before pulling Arthur down for a sloppy, wet kiss where he licks Arthur clean amongst breathy moans and unsteady breaths.

“Mmm,” Arthur hums, content, although his cock is a hot throb against Merlin’s soft belly. He’s lost the urgency of youth, though he is far from old (despite what Merlin says, the cheeky little arse), and revels in the sweet agony of breaking his lover down with his loving, until there’s little left but the heated passion they share. Merlin sighs, pushing the damp heat of his breath into Arthur to share, before pulling away to blink sweetly at him with a dazed, sated smile. Arthur smiles back, reaching up to run a hand through his hair, a finger along his ear, before cupping his rosy cheek tenderly.

“Darling,” Arthur murmurs, heart too big for his chest, and Merlin blushes an even deeper red. Arthur smirks. “We’re far from done.”

Surprised, Merlin opens his mouth but nothing comes out. Instead, Arthur dips down for a biting kiss that has him whimpering in response, before Arthur leaves a trail of suckling bites down Merlin’s neck until he reaches his chest. He licks the sharp jut of Merlin’s collarbones before he attacks his pebbled nipples, relentless in his attentions as Merlin squeals and bucks beneath him. They’re sensitive and respond so prettily to his ministrations; hardening to peaks while the skin reddens. He closes his teeth around one and pulls, biting down until Merlin cries actual tears, then soothes it with soft laps of his tongue that has Merlin’s cock filling up in twitches against Arthur’s stomach. Merlin’s mostly beyond words by then, just uttering a litany of “Please, please, please” as he jerks and shivers beneath him. It’s gorgeous and exhilarating, because somehow, they’re both swept up in the scene he’s created; Merlin, untouched and still his servant, so easily riled and surprised. It sates something within Arthur, something dark and possessive, which in turn riles him up even more as each whimper, moan and cry from his lover is a whole new victory than before.

“Arthur!” Merlin cries, skin flushed red all the way down his chest as his cheeks shine with tears. “Oh gods!

He comes again, drenching them with a hot, sticky flood of seed that has them both groaning. It coats Arthur’s stomach, making his cock jerk in envy, before Merlin collapses into a sobbing heap of satisfaction. Arthur kisses him gently, careful because his lover is so sensitive but loves the pleasure-pain of going just a little bit further, and strokes big, warm hands down his sides and through his hair in an attempt to soothe.    

“You’re so good for me, aren’t you darling?” he murmurs against Merlin’s slack lips, tasting his panting breaths and mixing it with his own. “Such a good, sweet boy.”

Merlin whimpers, his hands having found their way to the small of Arthur’s back where they clench weakly, helplessly, as he tries to hide his face away in the crook of Arthur’s neck. Arthur chuckles, giving them a few more moments to allow Merlin to catch his breath before he pulls away, getting up on his knees and gently pushing away Merlin’s grabby hand when he tries to keep him in place.

“Turn around, darling,” he says, softly but with enough demand to it to let Merlin know he means it. Uncomprehending, Merlin blinks up at him with dazed, hazy eyes as if he does not understand why Arthur isn’t pressing him down into the mattress, covering every inch of him with warmth and affection. Had Arthur’s cock not been painfully hard at the moment, he would’ve probably promptly lied down and held Merlin close as they both fell asleep, but now he aches for Merlin’s heat and he knows all too well how much Merlin craves this when he’s as far gone as he is now. Just one more little push and he’ll be gone, blissful and pliant and without worries. Sweet and loving in Arthur’s arms, his own to protect and provide for. So bloody perfect.

“I...I don’t...”, Merlin begins, words slurred, and Arthur gently hushes him before helping him to turn around and spread his legs wide enough for Arthur to fit between as he crawls down and settles. He grips each pale cheek firmly, pushing them apart to reveal the flushed bud of Merlin’s twitching hole. In response, Merlin lets out a strangled noise and clenches his cheeks, flushed and wriggling in Arthur’s grip as if embarrassed. Arthur can’t help but grin, presses it into the soft skin of Merlin’s bottom, before he nuzzles down to breath hot, damp air over his hole. Merlin whines and jerks his hips, but Arthur’s grip is strong and keeps him in place as Arthur’s tongue darts out to lick a hot stripe over his hole.

“Nuugh!” Merlin grunts as Arthur continues to lick, wetting him thoroughly so he can press the tip of a finger in alongside his tongue and gently probe, until Merlin relaxes around him and starts pushing for more. “Muh.”

Arthur hums in excitement at Merlin’s responsiveness, leaning back for a moment to spit directly on the reddened hole before pushing his finger further inside. Merlin’s loosened from his previous releases but still so tight around him, clenching and greedy, pushing back against his gently moving finger while panting harshly and moaning helplessly. Swearing, Arthur nips at him before he draws back and removes his finger to go in search for their oil. Merlin whines in protest, twisting around in an attempt to reach for him to drag him back, making Arthur grin and swat his bottom as he rounds the bed for the side table.

“Prat,” Merlin growls, and frowns in annoyance as he watches Arthur rooting around in the drawers for the vial of oil. It takes a while, and Arthur thinks Merlin must have misplaced it sometime between last night and this morning, but he finally succeeds in grasping the correct one and makes an appropriate noise of victory.

“On your back, darling,” Arthur murmurs, voice dark as he stares down at his lover who promptly, for once, obeys. Watching the lithe, pale twist of his body as he rolls over for him has Arthur sucking in a sharp breath. Merlin looks impossibly young, beautiful with his flushed skin and pretty cock already hard, as if he’s a youth again. He spreads his legs for Arthur and blushes, as if surprised at his own daring, but his gaze is steady and he’s set his chin in that determined way he has when he’s set on having what he wants. Utterly brilliant, his sorcerer.

“That it,” Arthur praises, climbing into bed again and settling down between his legs. He kneels, sitting down, and drags Merlin by the hips until his bottom rests in his lap. Pressing his hands against the inner side of both smooth thighs, Arthur forces them apart as wide as he can before he uncaps the vial of oil and dribbles it first over Merlin’s cock, then down his balls, allowing it to seep between his cheeks and slick the skin around his hole. Before he corks it again he soaks his own cock and then pours a little lake of it into Merlin’s belly button, smirking at all the indignant noises his lover his making at the cool though of oil all over.

“Fuck, Arthur, will you just get on with it?” he demands through clenched teeth, glaring up at him. Arthur smirks but dips two fingers into the pool of oil on his belly, smearing them, before he trails them slowly down past Merlin’s cock and downwards, until they press suggestively at his hole.

“Oh don’t worry,” he says darkly, giving no warning before he pushes one finger all the way inside, licking his lips when it makes Merlin arch up in surprise, fisting the sheets and letting out a gasp. “You’ll get it.”

After that, Arthur doesn’t waste any time in getting the younger man stretched out for him. He scissors two fingers inside, tapping with his fingertips against the sensitive bump that has Merlin sobbing and trashing his head from side to side. Arthur aches with arousal, pushed rapidly towards his limit as he buries three fingers into his lover and teasing with a fourth around the edges where their bodies connect. When Merlin’s broken pleas finally becomes too much, Arthur swears and wastes little time in replacing his fingers with his cock; pressing slowly but relentlessly inside until he bottoms out, hands grasping Merlin’s trembling thighs and keeping him spread wide. He gives them both a moment to adjust; Merlin is impossibly tight and hot around him, squirming and whimpering like he has no idea what to do with this. But Arthur knows, and he pulls out slowly before pushing back in with a powerful thrust, setting a hard, deep pace that has Merlin sliding along the sheets and crying out like it is being punched out of him. There’ll be bruises on Merlin’s thighs, Arthur thinks, and his hips and bottom will probably be smarting for a while. Right now, however, Merlin is lost to their passion; reaching frantically for his own cock and pulling it fast, desperate for release even as he shivers and groans at the tingles of oversensitivity he must be experiencing.

“That’s it, darling,” Arthur praises, swirling his hips and pressing at Merlin’s thighs to change the angle until he hits the right spot. He’s so close to coming, enflamed by the creature beneath him, and he needs Merlin there with him. It won’t take long once he gets the angle right; Merlin is already leaking and twitching, his hand never stopping its frantic motion on his cock, and when Arthur finally hits that spot he shots his name in surprise, eyes wide.

“Arthur!” he calls out again, gasping and sweating, so close to the headboard now he’ll soon bump into it. Arthur pauses just long enough to drag him back, moving them further down the back before he resumes his pounding, leaning down to attach his mouth to a perky nipple. “Oh, oh, I’m so close...so, oh--!” His breath hitches high when Arthur bites down sharp and he goes rigid beneath him, hole fluttering tight and sinful as he spills his release between them. As he comes down he goes completely boneless, pliant and warm for Arthur who doesn’t stop fucking into him just growls, urged on by his lover’s release.

“Fuck,” Arthur breathes against the abused nipple he’s been nipping at, leaving it to reach up for a sloppy, messy kiss as his thrusts starts to stutter. He can feel the burning lust in this stomach tightening, the tingling feeling of cresting pleasure running through his body like sinful caresses. His cock is twitching and so, so hard inside the hot, tight grasp of Merlin’s little bottom and it doesn’t take long before he’s falling over that edge, burying himself as deep as he can before he spills his release in him. He’s gasping Merlin’s name, hips twitching as he fucks his pleasure into him, unwilling to pull out as he shudders through him. He barely registers the soft, cooing noises of encouragement being whispered into his ear, but together with the feeling of Merlin’s warm, calloused hands running up and down his back it brings him back to himself. He doesn’t bother catching himself as he collapses onto his lover, but chuckles weakly at the annoyed grunt he gets in return.

“You oaf,” Merlin croaks, voice used and lovely, but when he pokes him he’s gentle. Tuning his head from where he’d buried it into the bed next to Merlin’s, Arthur mouths at one of these silly, endearing ears, humming contently. Merlin whines pitifully, shivering beneath him. “Mmph, Arthur, stop it. Can’t. Not again.”   

Arthur snorts, nipping at the lobe, before working his way around to Merlin’s lips instead. He kisses him gently, feeling warm and sated, and delights in the happy noises Merlin makes. It takes him several minutes to pull away, slipping out of Merlin with a sympathetic wince as he does, but he simply rearranges them so he has Merlin spooned in his embrace. He runs his hand over his overheated skin, gentling him like a horse that’s been running for too long, and snuffles the soft mess of Merlin’s hair at his delicate nape. Merlin is utterly pliable throughout it all, the odd noises escaping him all soft and exhausted.

“Sleep,” Arthur says, groping around for the sheets to cover them with, and settles down for some well-earned rest. His knights will surely understand his absence for this morning’s training session; Arthur is sure he’ll be able to come up with a plausible excuse. Or possibly just have Merlin bend over to pick something up and point at his backside. It’s not Arthur’s fault his sorcerer is such an irresistible trollop, really. Besides, he’s the King. He can choose his own form of exercise, if he so wishes. And this, he thinks smugly, was very good exercise. He’s sure Merlin would agree.

o-oOo-o

When he awakes the next time, Merlin has once again slipped out of his arms but when Arthur blinks his eyes open he’s met with the wide-eyes of his lover staring at him from where he stand by the other side of the bed. Growling in warning, his annoyance already seeping in, he sees Merlin’s eyes grow impossibly wider and watches as the younger man takes a step back. Good, because Arthur is a few seconds away from pouncing his little idiot and binding him to the bed.

“Something’s wrong,” Merlin blurts out, blushing almost as soon as the words are out of his mouth. Arthur is sitting up in alarm, annoyance replaced with immediate concern now that he sees how anxious Merlin looks.

“What? What’s happened?” he demands, moving to get out of bed and to his side. Merlin watches wide-eyed, blushing even further when Arthur stands naked.

“You’re not my Arthur,” Merlin says, causing him to freeze in his movements where he’s reaching out for him. Hurt, Arthur draws back and frowns at him. Merlin winces. “Um, that is...what were you doing last night?”

Confused and not a little angry at the way Merlin’s acting, Arthur completes his action and grabs Merlin by the arms, inspecting him. “I was with you, remember? Are you all right, Merlin?”

Biting his lip, Merlin looks sad and a little bit frightened. Arthur’s stomach drops. “The thing is, you weren’t. You were with the King and dismissed me for the night. And...and now...I mean, before, I woke up and went to get your bath ready for before the council meeting because you’re all...filthy,” he blushes, fidgeting, “And then you were out there,” he points towards the window, “With your knights when I know,” he blushes darker, “I knew you were here.” He takes a moment to breath, seemingly attempting to get his voice under control because it’s frantic and high pitched. He finishes, sounding strange, “And. And you’re old.”

Arthur stares, mind reeling as he tries to make sense of what Merlin says. He ignores the last comment, shrugging it off, because there is someone who looks like him out there pretending to be him. “Merlin, we have to catch this imposter. Has he done any damage? Quick, help me dress,” he snaps, urgent, and shrugs off Merlin’s hands when they reach for him as he stalks over to his wardrobe, seething and this new threat.

“Arthur, no!” Merlin calls, running over to him and grasping for his attention. “Listen to me! He’s not an imposter, and neither are you; I checked! Believe me, I checked. My magic says you’re both you, but you’re older and I didn’t notice at first because you were finally kissing me and being incredible but now I see because you’ve got a beard, Arthur, a beard and you’re distractingly beautiful but there’s grey in your hair--!”

Arthur cuts him off with a kiss, running his hands down his flailing arms and calming him down. Merlin instantly melts against him, whimpering, and Arthur takes this moment to fully register what he’s being told. Suddenly he remembers how young Merlin looked in their bed, how he trembled and how he blushes. How he’s dressed in those old rags of his servant days that he hasn’t seen in bloody years. Groaning, Arthur ends the kiss and leans his forehead against Merlin’s. “Please don’t tell me I’ve been sent back in time and took you to bed like a brute.”

Cheeks flaring hot, Merlin huffs in offence and pouts. “You’ve probably been sent back in time and finally took me to bed like I’ve been begging you to do for ages, you prat.”

Chuckling weakly, Arthur cups Merlin’s hot cheek and caresses the delicate skin underneath one eye with his thumb. “I do seem to remember a time in our courtship where you acted like an absolute trollop, teasing me endlessly, before you finally pounc—“, he breaks himself of, eyes going wide. “Oh.

Merlin makes a noise of confusion as Arthur’s lips stretch in a wide, manic grin. “I was your first, weren’t I?” Blinking, Merlin stares, uncomprehending, so Arthur clarifies with a dark chuckle. “I took your innocence, didn’t I, Merlin? You were untouched before this.”

Frowning, Merlin punches his chest. “Yes, you dollop-head. Not,” he glares as Arthur laughs, “that it matters if I hadn’t been, because—“

Preventing a lecture, Arthur kisses him again and savours the idea that he’s had this all along, has always had it. It doesn’t matter in the grand scheme of things, because Arthur will always be Merlin’s last and that matters, but the ugly, possessive streak he has is purring darkly with satisfaction.

Whimpering, Merlin pulls away flushed and breathless. “We’ve still got a problem.”

Arthur groans, dropping his head down to rest on Merlin’s bony shoulder. No wonder he found him so skinny; if this is before the sexual part of their courtship then—then Merlin isn’t more than a wide-eyed youth, oh by the gods, he’d be so young here and Arthur, Arthur is over thirty...

“My father’s still alive,” he remembers, dazed and trying to distract himself from having bedded a callow youth, a callow Merlin.

“Magic’s still banned,” Merlin points out.

“Right.” It wouldn’t be easy to explain his presence, would most likely be seen as a plot against the Royal family (as Arthur himself had been so ready to think), and he doesn’t know how wise it would be to interfere with history even if he has so many things that has been left unsaid to so many people.

“I just don’t think it’d be wise to let anyone know you’re here,” Merlin explains, soft and concerned. “I mean, obviously I know, but I won’t tell anyone. Apart from Gaius, probably, we’ll need him if we’re to send you back.”

Nodding, Arthur runs a hand through Merlin’s hair and sighs. “I seem to remember you giving me several lectures on the danger of meddling with time. Or, well, I guess I will be hearing them. Well, this time’s me will be hearing them. At some point. Probably inspired by this, gods, I really need to get back.”

Stepping in even closer, Merlin wraps his arms around him and hold on tight, hiding his face in Arthur’s neck. “It’ll be all right. I’ll send you back.”

Chuckling, Arthur presses a kiss to his cheek before pulling away. “Right, well, we better go to Gaius. But first, clothes and something to eat, I think.”

Blushing, Merlin eyes his naked body with bashful appreciation. Arthur grins, puffing up a bit because even now Merlin desires him; so old compared to the Arthur he must be used to here.

“Right,” Merlin agrees, sounding strangled as Arthur walks away. Casting a glance over his shoulder, he sees Merlin ogling his arse and smirks. If nothing else, this latest magical mishap will at least prove to be interesting.

o-oOo-o