Arthur had just begun his reign as king, he had been wrapped up in securing alliances with the various surrounding kingdoms. For weeks he spoke to councilmen and sent missives to organize a visit from all the surrounding kingdoms. Merlin watched as all the work drained on Arthur, he looked constantly exhausted, his shoulders slumped when no one but Merlin was there to see him.
Merlin couldn’t stand by and watch his king suffer, so he assembled the king’s closest knights and with their help pulled the king outside the castle walls and into the surrounding woods for a much needed hunt. Merlin could see the weight lift off Arthur’s shoulders with every step they took away from the kingdom.
Arthur had managed to bag a buck, while the knights had caught some smaller game. Everything had gone to plan, the king was joking around with his men as they made their way back to the citadel. Just as the group of men were about to emerge from the woods, the sound of a branch snapping behind them froze them in place. Drawing their weapons the king and his knights turned toward the noise, a man in a dark cloak standing before them.
“Who are you?” The king asked the man.
“My identity does not matter, King of Camelot. You have been your father’s puppet for too long and it is time that you showed your people your true colours.” With those words he sent a spell towards the king. The king jumped away from the blast having already guessed how this was going to go. What the king was not expecting was Merlin standing directly behind him arms outstretched as if he was about to push the king out of the way.
The servants looked towards the approaching curse in shock, crashing to the ground upon impact. The king rushed to the raven haired man’s side leaving his knights to take care of the rogue sorcerer. The warlock was laying unresponsive and no matter what the king tried he was unable to rouse the pale man. Choosing the next best course of action he ordered the knight to mount up, placing Merlin before him on Llamrei as they made their way to Gauis.
The physician could find nothing physically wrong with the raven haired man, so the group had to wait for the Raven haired man to awake. It took just over an hour for the man in question to start to stir, blue eyes opening up to multiple faces hovering over him with expressions of worry painted across all their faces, with his mounting confusion the faces quickly turned to shock.
“What happened?” The warlock asked.
“Merlin mate, your hair is gray!” Gwaine cried out at the same time that Arthur asked, “Are you feeling alright?”
“Out, all of you! I need to speak to my patient.” Gauis ordered.
“You heard him, out.” Arthur ordered.
“Sire, it would be best if you went with the knights.” Gaius tried to explain.
“That is not happening.”
Arthur fixed his stance, appearing as kingly as could be. With a nod of his head Gauis proceeded to ask Merlin if he felt any different. Once no abnormalities, beyond the changing colours of his hair, now pink with embarrassment, were noted they left the warlock to rest as the king informed his men. While the king went to break the news Gaius went to work on finding a cure.