The Winter Festival held by the King Uther Pendragon on the grounds of his castle was in full swing. Children were laughing as they threw snowballs at each other, people were flocking at the stores selling exquisite winter clothing and warm and delicious treats and playing fun games. There were friends making snowmen and lovers making snow angels. Everyone smiled and greeted the Crown Prince, Arthur Pendragon welcomingly and warmly as he made his way through the Winter Festival accompanied by his trustworthy manservant and best friend Merlin. Arthur and Merlin stopped at Guinevere's stall that she had set up to sell the clothes that she had designed and sewn. Gwen welcomed Arthur and Merlin warmly and Merlin and Arthur was soon chatting and laughing with Gwen as they looked at her exquisite work. Looking at all the effort she had put into making the most beautiful cloaks, gloves, scarves and coats, there was no doubt in their minds that she was the best seamstress in the kingdom of Camelot. Then Gwen excused herself to attend to a few other customers and Merlin and Arthur commented on the fine work of Gwen.
"This looks lovely. What say you, Merlin?" asked Arthur as he picked up a deep midnight blue neckerchief with a golden dragon breathing out stars embroidered onto it.
Merlin smiled as he looked at Arthur who looked drop dead handsome, wearing a Pendragon Red hooded cloak lined with gold silk "Yes, it's really beautiful."
"Then you shall have it." said Arthur grandly as he gave it to Merlin who looked surprised at the offering and Arthur waved his hand at Gwen
"Guinevere if you could be so kind to sell me that purple cloak and those white pair of gloves as well along with this neckerchief."
"What?" asked Merlin, finally finding words "I don't - Arthur, you can't buy me that neckerchief!"
"Don't be ridiculous, Merlin. I'm buying you the neckerchief, and the cloak and gloves." said Arthur rolling his eyes in amusement at his manservant's squawk of surprise "You look almost under dressed for winter. I won't have my best friend freezing his neck off."
"I can't pay you back." muttered Merlin, whose eyes had widened in disbelief and pleasant surprise at Arthur's kindness.
"It's a gift to you from me." said Arthur handing over Merlin, the packed clothes "And besides, the colours suit you nicely. Now put it on and get yourself warm."
Merlin looked at Arthur in pleasant surprise and gratitude "Thank you, Arthur."
"You're welcome, Merlin." said Arthur as he ruffled Merlin's hair fondly "Now, I'm going to get us some of that hot chocolate you were talking about."
Merlin smiled softly as he watched Arthur walk away and then he began to put on his richly divine purple cloak "There's something sweet and almost kind."
"But he was mean and he was coarse and unrefined." sang Merlin as he shook his head in disbelief thinking about the times Arthur would throw things at him and yell at him to be more useful and then smiled softly and sweetly "And now he's dear and so unsure. I wonder why I didn't see it there before."
"He glanced this way, I thought I saw." sang Arthur as he saw Merlin looking at him with a fond and soft expression "And when we touched, he didn't shudder at my hand."
Arthur shook his head at his stupid thoughts "No it can't be, I'll just ignore."
Then Arthur saw Merlin smile at him happily and he smiled back "But then he's never looked at me that way before."
"New and a bit alarming. Who'd have ever thought that this could be?" sang Merlin as he slipped on his warm and cosy gloves and laughed in amusement "True that he's no Prince Charming."
"But there's something in him that I simply didn't see." sang Merlin with a knowing smile.
King Uther Pendragon and Gaius who were strolling leisurely through the Winter Festival had seen this remarkable exchange between Arthur and Merlin. They had seen how Arthur had bought Merlin warm clothing, ignoring his protests and they had seen the way that Arthur and Merlin looked at each other. Now they were watching as their children were throwing snowballs playfully at each other laughing and yelling mischievous insults with huge grins on their faces.
"Well, who'd have thought?" asked King Uther with a pleasantly surprised smile as he watched his son laugh in happiness at Merlin's childish antics ... something he hadn't seen for a long time.
"Well, bless my soul." sang Gaius as he placed a hand on his chest with a smile.
"Well, who'd have known?" sang Morgana who had just arrived to the scene and was watching it with a knowing smirk.
"Well, who indeed?" sang Gaius with a merry twinkle in his eyes.
"And who'd have guessed they'd come together on their own?" sang King Uther as he looked at Gaius and Morgana with a grin.
"It's so peculiar." sang Gaius as he watched Merlin get hit squarely on his face by a snowball thrown well by Arthur.
"We'll wait and see, a few days more." sang King Uther, Gaius and Morgana in unison as they looked at each other knowingly "There maybe something there that wasn't there before."
King Uther rubbed his chin as he nodded his head in agreement, singing "You know, perhaps there's something there that wasn't there before."
Morgana smiled happily as she watched Arthur and Merlin walk arm in arm towards the castle and finished by singing "There maybe something there that wasn't there before."