Camelot: A Short Story

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Leon walked the corridor leading to the royal quarters. The silence of the halls and the echoing of his footsteps in the once lively castle stood out as a stark reminder of the new normal that had come over the kingdom. Arthur had been gone nearly a month now and the pall that still reigned over the castle and Camelot in general was evident. Guinevere was doing her best to maintain composed in an uncertain time, but he knew she was struggling. He saw it at their daily Round Table meetings: the faint creases growing at the corners of her eyes and her once cheerful demeanor taken on that of a widow—and sovereign—faced with a new reality. Compounded with the loss of Arthur was Merlin 's absence. He may have been a servant in name, but only now…show more content…
Guinevere said that Merlin had made a brief appearance in Camelot a week and a half prior—long enough to drop off some letters for her and Gaius and leave without so much of a word to anyone else. That pained him too—that neither he, nor Percival, received a letter. There was still so much unresolved between them, so much he wanted to ask...but he hadn 't a clue where his old friend was or if he 'd ever appear in Camelot again. He made it to the royal chambers and knocked. Guinevere 's maidservant Meliora opened the door. "The Queen will be with you in a moment," she said, her voice quiet. She was a new addition, had only been in the position a week—after much insistence on his part after seeing just how run ragged the queen had become. Guinevere hadn 't wanted one, especially after the experience with Sefa some months prior. But enough of his nagging and she finally agreed. "Thank you, Meliora," Guinevere said, placing down a paper she 'd been perusing, rising from the table that Arthur once sat at. "Can you leave us for a few minutes? It 's a nice day. Perhaps take a stroll around town? I shall be fine here for…show more content…
"Yes," she said. "Gaius was able to say goodbye in person. This...this is mine." The tears she 'd held back spilled down her cheeks and she quickly wiped them away. "I 'm sorry. I shouldn 't be reacting this way." "Of course you should," Leon said. "He was a dear friend and his absence is just as hard as..." He stopped, before mentioning Arthur. He stopped himself, a thought coming to his mind. "Perhaps, my lady, I could be the messenger?" Guinevere hesitated. "Are you certain that would be wise?" "If you are concerned about my duties here, Percival can take charge in the short time I am gone," he said. "As you know, things have been quiet as of late, the remaining Saxons having been pushed back to the northeastern border and—" "That 's not what I meant," she said. "I know he was a good friend of yours, and you 've been trying your best to hide how much his absence has affected you, too." He clamped his mouth shut, trying to put to words what he was feeling. Expressing such things had never come easy for him. " I never realized how often he 'd helped us on those many journeys around the realm—how many times he 'd saved us. The way he didn 't return, without so much as a goodbye to the rest of us..." He shook his head. "I 'd like to try and

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