Cold sheets, but where's my love?
The sun was still hidden behind the black of the night, when Morgana opened her eyes. With blurry vision, she saw someone moving silently around the room. Rubbing her eyes, she lazily stood on one arm.
''Arthur? Is that you?'', her voice has hoarse from sleep and she noticed the figure stilling at the sound of her voice.
''Sleep, Morgana, it's late.'', he said and before she could answer, he had entered the bathroom, closing the door behind him.
She sighed and dropped back on the mattress. Playing with her raven locks, she waited for him to come to bed, silently.
A few minutes later, the bathroom door opened once again and steam followed after him like a haunting ghost. She smiled softly as he lay beside her.
''What time is it?''
''Late. Sleep.'', his tone was commanding and he looked like he wasn't in the best of moods.
She frowned. ''Is everything alright?'', she softly asked and lay her head on his chest. A few silent moments passed, his chest was heaving up and down. He seemed worried about something, she could almost hear his mind running marathons.
''Yes.'', he answered, at last. Kissing her temple, he turned his back on her. ''Sleep, 'Gana.''
Worried, she mumbled a faint 'goodnight'. Feeling the urge to sooth him, she ran her fingers from his neck to his back. He always loved this when he was stressed. Yet, this time, she felt him tense under her touch and she soon understood why, once she felt light bumps over his skin. She froze and took her hand away.
''Please, Morgana, sleep.'', his voice was softer now, his tone almost pleading and... was it guilt she heard in his tone? Of course not, for what could he guilty about, after all?
In a rush, she got up and put a shawl over her shoulders. As the moonlight brightened their room, she hesitantly turned her gaze on him. The moon was giving her the answer, yet she stubbornly refused to see it. Swallowing an inexistant lump, she hurried out of the room, closing the door behind her.
She stood there for a few moments, right outside of their door, taking a few breaths. Her hands were trembling and a few unshed tears were trying to make their way from the corners of her eyes. She quickly wiped them off and slowly walked towards the end of the hall, close to the stairs. She stopped outside the first room and opened the door as lightly as possible. Light snores welcomed her and she unknowingly smiled.
Mordred, her firstborn, was sleeping and peacefully was not a word to describe it. His five-year-old body was all over the bed, from one corner to the over. His little legs were hanging off of it, along with one of his arms. His little mouth was slightly parted and his breath was constantly pushing up and down a raven lock that was falling over his temple. She chuckled and moved to put him in a better position, while wrapping the covers around him. For a second, his blue orbs met her emerald ones and she smiled, kissing both of his cheeks and his temple.
Igraine's room was beside her brother's. Unlike him -and more like her father, she was a peaceful sleeper, most of the times, at least. Her golden hair were spread over her pillows and she was still tucked in just as she had left her a few hours ago. She kissed her temple, too, and walked out of her room, slowly.
As she took the steps which led her closer and closer to the end of the stairs, breathing was getting harder by the second. Every room, every corner of each room had plenty of memories of them.
Making a cup of coffee, she took a sit outside on the bench and looked out, up to the stars and to the far end of the garden. It didn't matter where she was looking at, her emerald lakes were foggy and lost to a world of memories and happiness.
Eight years of marriage were not much, yet neither were they little. They had created a beautiful family, against all odds. Against his father's constant doubts about everything, against their own fears, all seemed to have finally settled. And with the arrival of their second child, happiness would be an understatement of a word.
Yet, soon after Igraine's birth, five years ago, her husband began to get more and more distant. Could it be his father's constant demands? He seemed to had bittered all the more after learning of theirs daughter's name. She could blame it on his hatred for the wife who left him behind, taking his son with her and raising him with another man. She couldn't blame her, though. Uther was a harsh man and her mother-in-law had spoken a few times about his cheating habits as a married man. She was happy that Igraine had met someone who could actually take care of her and her son and love him as if he was his own. Balinor was a great man, nothing like Uther ever could be! And Merlin, Arthur's half-brother, was also a sweetheart, just like his father.
Yet, he too had become distant these past few months. His baby blue eyes were always hesitant when landed on her and his smiles were tiny and unsure. Nothing like the Merlin she knew.
She inhaled the cold air of the morning as the first light of the day made it's appearance known from over the hills.
Arthur was the man she had always wanted, as a friend, as a lover, as a husband and as the father of her children. He was loving, caring, cheerful and strict when he needed to be. They had come a long way, from constantly bickering with each other at the early days of college, to becoming friends, to soon becoming lovers and to becoming parents of two beautiful and adorable children.
A tiny tear slipped from her eyes and ran down to her jaw. She made no move to wipe it off. The future seemed, for the first time in years, too unpredictable. So much that it almost scared her.
She heard tiny steps approaching her and lazily she looked over her shoulders. Igraine was walking towards the door, rubbing her emerald eyes and dragging a tiny stuffed bear along with her. It was her father's first gift, given to her at her birth. She never slept without it and the very sight of her holding its paw tight made her chuckle.
''Why are you up so early, sweetheart?'', she softly asked and opened the door, allowing her to come to her.
The little girl yawned and climbed to her lap, making herself comfortable. ''Mommy... I had a dream...'', she almost whined, rubbing her little nose against her mother's warm neck.
Morgana covered her with her shawl and hugged her tight. ''Another one, Ig? What about, this time?''
''About you and dad. I saw you yelling at each other.'', she rose her eyes up and looked at her mother's ones. Eyes so similar that seemed like Morgana had given her her own. ''Do you ever yell at each other, mommy?''
Morgana gulped, frowning. There were a few times that they had fought over his growing absence and ignorance. She tried to keep it in their room as much as possible, but she was sure that their children had heard a few of their words. It pained her that they had affected them that much. ''Listen, sweetheart.'', she sighed and began to explain. ''When two people love each other, they sometimes fight.''
''But why?'', she asked, tears almost covering her beautiful innocent eyes. ''Why do you have to fight if you love each other?''
Morgana eyes softened. She could feel the urge to cry fast approaching, but she brushed it off. ''Because... Sometimes when things go wrong, you have to point some things out and shake some sense in the person you love.'', she tried to smile, her eyes glowed with mischievousness and Igraine chuckled in her lap. She laughed with her and tickled her. As their laughs soon calmed down, Morgana hugged her tightly. ''Sleep, my love. I promise, everything will be fine.'', she kissed her temple and after Igraine's faint 'I love you', she heard her breaths began to get softer, as she drifted off to a peaceful sleep.
Morgana was rocking back and forth, kissing her soft hair or her temple then and now.
Everything would work out just fine. They were a family.