Spoilers: for one line of dialogue in 1x10
Summary: Merlin drinks, Arthur disapproves. Until he doesn't.
Notes: my first Merlin fic. oh, help.
"Be careful with the wine; you know what you're like. One whiff of a barmaid's apron and you're singing like a sailor."
Gaius to Merlin, 1x10
Gaius is obviously mad; wine is brilliant.
And he hasn't sung once, if you don't count the ballad he's forgotten the words to and was just about to improvise, before Arthur swept in to drag him bodily out of the armory.
"Bors!" Arthur says, from beneath Merlin's arm, his face far closer than it should be. Merlin thinks he would like to examine Arthur from this distance but their staggering lope down the corridor to Gaius' rooms is making him seasick.
"Drinking with Bors, of all people!" Arthur continues. "Have you no survival skills at all? Why on earth would you do such a thing?"
"He asked?" Merlin offers.
"Do you do everything people ask? And before you answer, remember that I know very well and in some detail how you categorically do not."
Since Arthur seems fully capable of having both sides of this conversation, Merlin is able to look at him instead. In Merlin's opinion, Arthur is pretty brilliant, too, especially in the torchlight, where his hair is golden and soft-looking, even if his mouth is too stern and disapproving. Merlin lifts a hand and tries to soften that hard line with his fingertips, watches something hot flare in Arthur's eyes. Merlin stumbles at Arthur's abrupt stop, letting Arthur take all his weight, which brings Arthur's face very close.
"And you do everything that is asked of you, don't you?" Merlin says, quietly, and the thought strikes him as oddly sad. "No matter what the cost."
Arthur swallows. "You're drunk," he says, softly.
Merlin sees no reason to re-state the obvious. "If I asked you to kiss me, would you do that, too?"
The stern disapproval is back. "I don't make a habit of kissing people too inebriated to make rational decisions."
Merlin tries to catch Arthur's eye to impress him with his sobriety, but it's difficult because Arthur is staring at Merlin's mouth. "I'm completely rash. Rational." He suppresses a hiccup.
The corner of Arthur's mouth quirks into something between a tolerant smile and a sneer. "Of course you are. That's why you were moments away from allowing Bors to carry you off to his chambers."
Merlin attempts to draw himself up with dignity. He steps on Arthur's foot. "There would have been no carrying involved, and no chambers visited, in any case."
"You were singing about the color of his eyes," Arthur says, through clenched teeth.
"Oh. That." Merlin is quiet for a moment. "That may make things awkward in the morning."
"I wouldn't worry about it," Arthur says grimly, as they begin walking again. "Bors will find that he has very pressing patrol duties along the far northern border to keep him busy. Possibly for years."
"Merlin, why isn't Gaius here?" Arthur asks, glaring around the moonlit room, when it becomes apparent no one is coming to help.
"Healer's convention. Prop -- properties of the gentian root," Merlin says serenely. "Though, if you ask me, it's just an excuse to spend the weekend in Cornwall."
"I should just leave you on the floor," Arthur says, but he drags Merlin into the room anyway and sighs. "Come on, then. Let's get you to your hovel."
Merlin trips over strewn clothing and books as soon as he steps over the threshold, and staggers some more as he tries to pull his shirt off over his head, effectively blinding himself.
"Merlin, stop stumbling -- Mind the table -- Oh, you're useless." Then there are hands untangling him from the folds of material, and when his head is finally free he finds himself staring into Arthur's very exasperated gaze. Arthur's eyes drop to his body. "My God. Don't you ever go out in the sun?"
Merlin looks down at himself. He does seem rather phosphorescent in the moonlight. "As a family, we are historically pale."
"Well." Arthur looks away then, furtively, and it's hard to tell in the darkness of the room, but his cheeks seem flushed in a very interesting way, and his mouth looks anything but stern and unforgiving. In fact, it looks very soft and oddly uncertain. Merlin leans forward to find out.
And oh, when he pulls back, he has Arthur's complete attention -- wide eyes and sharply inhaled breath, and Merlin briefly wonders if Arthur intends to kiss him or kill him. Even after Arthur makes a soft sound and presses his mouth to Merlin's, he isn't entirely sure, because kissing Arthur is better than brilliant. It's practically world-ending.
Merlin puts his hands in Arthur's hair, tugs until he has Arthur's head tilted exactly right and has Arthur's lips warm and slightly open beneath his own. It's only the work of a thought to slide the bed a few feet closer, so when Merlin lets his knees buckle and takes Arthur with him, they fall onto the mattress instead of the floor.
Arthur comes up on his elbows in surprise. "How --?" he begins, but Merlin doesn't let him finish that sentence. He simply kisses Arthur again, more deeply this time. Arthur makes that sound again, the one deep in his throat that turns Merlin's insides to liquid, and then Arthur is on top of him with a mind-numbing kiss, crushing him into the bed.
Merlin can't think, not with Arthur pressed into him everywhere, hips and legs and chest, and oh, God, there's the hard pressure of Arthur's cock against his thigh. It could only be better if Merlin could get his hands on Arthur's skin, too, so he slides his hands up Arthur's back, dragging the soft linen along until it catches under Arthur's arms and slides partially over his face.
Arthur sits up, struggling against the shirt. Merlin thinks he's going to remove it, preferably quickly, but it looks like Arthur is trying to untangle his arms and pull it back on.
"No," Athur says. "No. You are very drunk and this a very bad idea; I don't know why I let you do this to me..."
Arthur is talking too much and cooperating too little. All it takes is a flash of magic and Arthur is flat on the bed, hands above his head where his shirt has tightened and somehow become lodged in the rough wood of the bedframe.
"What the hell--?" Arthur says, and tips his head back so he can look at the knot his shirt has become, pulling uselessly against the curiously tight bonds.
That's fine, though; it just gives Merlin the opportunity to mouth along Arthur's jaw and the smooth line of his neck, to explore the surprisingly delicate span of Arthur's collar bones. Honestly, Arthur has no room to talk, because his skin is pale, too, if disturbingly scarred in places that seem frighteningly vital. Merlin has to put his lips ons those raised marks, and now Arthur has stopped straining against the shirt that holds his wrists in favor of writhing beneath Merlin's mouth, a motion that gets more frantic the lower Merlin goes. When Merlin rubs his cheeks over the laces of Arthur's breeches, Arthur actually groans.
"Merlin... Merlin, please..." he says.
When Merlin looks up Arthur is staring back at him, almost as if he's in pain, his eyes wide and vulnerable...
Entirely at Merlin's mercy. Merlin feels instantly sober.
He crawls up Arthur's body, trying to ignore how wonderful Arthur feels beneath him, until they are face to face.
"I'm -- I'm so sorry," he begins, stumbling over the words, but Arthur leans up and catches Merlin's bottom lip between his teeth, draws it into the slick heat of his mouth and sucks on it for a moment.
Maybe Arthur can do magic, too, because when he releases Merlin's mouth, Merlin can't back away, held in place by the force of Arthur's glare alone.
"If you dare leave me in this condition, Merlin," Arthur says, pleasantly, "there will be beheadings. And at the moment, I'm not terribly concerned which head goes on the block."
Merlin swallows convulsively. "What. What do you want me to do, sire?"
The roll of Arthur's hips up into his own practically makes him see stars.
"My God, Merlin," Arthur whispers. "Just let me touch you."
The knot falls apart before the words are out of Arthur's mouth, and Arthur is on Merlin before the shirt hits the floor, and it turns out Arthur is brilliant with his hands, too, because he makes short work of their remaining clothing. Merlin wishes he were less dizzy so he could remember everything later, but it's all an urgent blur of touch and taste and movement, and the only moment that is completely clear is the second Arthur goes still and chokes out Merlin's name as if it were a prayer.
"You'll pay for this in the morning," Arthur says, presently, as they lay naked and tangled together, damp skin cooling in the night air.
"The stocks," Merlin sighs, resigned.
"If you like. Although, I think that in combination with what will definitely prove to be an incredibly wicked hangover, it might actually kill you." He touches Merlin's forehead gently.
"I'll take a pass, then."
"Good decision. I'll expect you at work early, anyway, if I'm going to spend the night in this dungeon." The words are casual but the look Arthur gives him is guarded.
Merlin simply wraps himself closer around Arthur's body. "I'll make sure of it."
"Good," Arthur says.
Brilliant, Merlin thinks. Absolutely.
Note: I tried, but if there's anything too obviously American, please let me know. Thanks!