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Merlin Fanfiction- Chapter 1

by pendr

Camelot, a huge kingdom with small cottages surrounding the enormous castle. The houses and shops were pale with wooden support beams. They’re beautiful, that’s what they are. These buildings lead up to the large citadel constructed of elegant white stone. The dirt path curving throughout the town progressing up to it was lined with booths owned by citizens making a living by selling their specialty crafts. There is always a place to look, always a person to meet. The atmosphere is light, and the people are as hospitable as the stories say.

I traveled down the dirt paths that wound through the houses and shops in order to reach the castle at the edge of the township. When I finally reached the looming stone fortress and entered the gates, I was approached by two guards, one with curly brown hair, and the other with dark skin and short, black hair. I could tell by their silver and red armor they wore that they were knights of Camelot. They must know Lancelot, I thought.

“Can we help you?” the shorter one with the black complexion asked. I was shocked by their approach because I had not previously thought of their presence here, only Lancelot’s.

“My name is Eleanora. I’m here to see my friend, Lancelot. He recently informed me that

he has become a Knight of Camelot. Do you know him?” I wondered aloud. They suddenly became silent and their faces fell in shock. “Is something the matter?” I questioned, my hope wavering as I questioned why they appeared worried.

Now the knight with the curly hair and eyes as blue as water spoke. “No,” he assured me. “Lancelot is on a mission with a few others. We will let you speak to the king about when he’ll return.”

“The king?” I responded, so surprised that my voice cracked. “Is that really necessary?” I was most concerned for my friend, but I now started to worry much more. The king… What would I say? What would he say, for dealing with common villagers such as myself certainly is not his interest.

“Yes. This way, please.” The kind men lead me towards an astoundingly tall set of stairs that had a regal, rich wood doorway at the top.

The castle walls were of the most elegant stone, cleaned and polished to incredible amounts. The halls were decorated with long carpets, tapestries, and stained-glass windows that threw endless colors into the air. There was nothing like it in all of Camelot, nothing as pure, perfect, or poised. People dressed in dyed, homespun fabrics moving about with food or buckets in their hands. The look in their eyes was one of determination, as if they were on a mission, but they never hesitated to greet a friend. Guards were in front of most doorways, a line of silver and red against the walls.

Against the busyness, I also felt an incredible anxiety within myself. It started with a twist of my stomach, then moved upwards into my throat so I could hardly open it. I had never seen the king before, but I was aware of his newness to power. I had heard he was just, but false testimony spreads quickly; he could very likely be unwilling to help, or possibly he may not allow Lancelot to see me. It’s been years, and I have no idea what Lancelot has done this whole time. If King Arthur doesn’t let me see my old friend, I will have had a pointless journey that ended with crushed hopes. I have wanted to meet Lancelot again for years, and now there is finally a chance. I cannot control anything of what happens next, and that fact makes me fear the future with passion.

The two men continued to walk as these terrifying thoughts gnawed at my heart. Their confident, solid posture stood out in comparison to the way I carried myself with fear. We wandered, seemingly aimlessly, throughout the maze of halls; finally, after climbing many stairs and traveling past many doorways, the knights stopped walking. My confusion focused not on where we were, but on how they knew where to walk to get to a destination.

“Please wait here. We will speak to the king about your situation. We will return to you shortly,” said the dark-skinned man.

I obeyed as I thanked the men. The time passed lethargically as I was alone in the hallway. I heard muffled voices from within the room, but I dared not listen. The longer I stood, the more detail I noticed within the hall. A tapestry covering a large portion of one wall depicted a ruler watching a magician being burned at the stake, an action he must have commanded. His face had an appearance that was grim, but without regret. The fire burned shades of orange, purple, and white. The magician being led to the burning pile of wood seemed to be crying, crying because of the people he’d be leaving and the life that was ending, not crying because of his choice to be practicing sorcery. I know. I know because I’ve seen that look before. My parents had the same gaze when it happened to them. I still remember my mother’s face that day, as she walked before my father to the mountain of sticks that were ablaze with a heat I could feel from yards away. She, too, was crying, just as the man in the painting. I knew, though, that she would have rather been a mage and died than stop her practices and live. My father and her both knew what the consequences were, but there was a hope in them that caused them to feel they could defy all odds. They couldn’t. Someone from our village reported them to Uther, the cold man that preceded Arthur, even though my parents only used magic to heal people of their illness. I remember him, too, standing on his balcony, his cold eyes staring blankly as my mother screamed and melted under the flames he commanded. He was a fool, and I have little hope his son is any different.

I am suddenly pulled from my torturous memory by the closing of a door and hearing my name get spoken. I’m confused for a moment, but then instantly remember where I am and why.

“Yes?” I ask in response, a wishful tone to my question.

Again, the dark-skinned knight was the one who talked to me. “Arthur is busy right now, but he would like us to show you to a room, and then he would like to see you in his quarters,” he pointed to the room the two just emerged from, “in one hour. If you follow Leon, he will bring you to where you will stay.”

“Thank you,” I sincerely replied. “Thank you for helping me with something so simple.”

“It’s what we’re here for.” The knight with brown hair and brown eyes then nodded to his partner and left us. There was something strange, perhaps not genuine, about how he was acting. I felt strongly that there was something these men were not telling me, which caused my anxiety to rise once again.

Then Leon, the knight with light hair and eyes, said to me, “King Arthur is busy planning an event for later this week. There is a celebration to recognize Camelot’s new queen, Guinevere. It will not interfere much with his helping you.”

“That sounds very nice. I hope she is a gentle queen. I assure you it’s no inconvenience for me.”

“She is fit for the title. She has been in Camelot her whole life, and she knows the people well.” We continued walking the halls, and he continued talking, but I didn’t mind. It kept my mind from worrying about all the things that could happen when I speak to the king. “Did you say your name is Eleanora?” he asked.

“Yes, that’s correct.”

“Very well. I’m Leon. It’s a pleasure to meet you.” He came to a halt at another elegant, yet smaller, door. “This will be where you may stay while you visit,” the knight told me as he opened the doorway. “We hope you will be most comfortable, and if you need assistance with anything at all, do not hesitate to ask.” As I took my first steps into the quarters, he held out his hand as a gesture. I gave him mine in return and he pressed his warm lips to the back of my hand as a common sign of kindness.

“Thank you, Leon,” I responded with an attempted smile and a slight curtsey, daring to use the man’s name. He nodded in return and shut the door behind him.

I was alone once more, solely with my thoughts. The hour passed slowly as I willed myself not to think of Lancelot. I did what I could to distract my mind from wandering. I tried cleaning the room, but there was nothing left that was unclean. I sang old songs that my mother taught me, and endeavored to remember the directions that needed to be taken to get back to the king’s quarters.

Finally, I decided it had been long enough for me to make my way back to Arthur’s room. After getting lost and being confused for most of the walk, I found my way to the correct area. I knocked on the door and waited. When no one answered I worried he had forgotten, or perhaps I was a bit early. As I was considering leaving, the heavy door creaked open, and a tall boy with dark hair was standing behind it. His shirt was dark blue, and there was a bright red piece of cloth tied around his neck. There was absolutely no possibility this was the king.

“Can I help you with something?” the boy greeted with a wide grin.

“I was told to meet King Arthur here. I am to speak to him about Lancelot, my friend.”

“Lancelot?” There was a look of despair and shock on his face that instantly made me feel terrified. There was nothing good that could lead to someone speaking like that. “I’m truly sorry. He was a friend to all of us. He did so much for everyone here while he was a knight.”

“Was?” I croaked. Was. I was so familiar with speaking about people in past tense. My best friend, the one I’ve only met a couple times, the one I’ve only spent a few months with, was no longer here. I started shaking my head violently as the burning of tears coming began. I could no longer contain the words as the spilled off my tongue, “He’s dead?”

The man stood frozen. “Come in. Arthur will talk to you,” he rambled nervously.

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Points: 52
Reviews: 3

Thu Oct 06, 2016 3:49 pm
Ziqdirection97 wrote a review...

Hi Pendr! Alright, after reading this fanfiction, it's time for a review of mine.

First things first, I am a huge fan of the Merlin mini series and this fanfiction is a great read to relive the series once more. I love how you describe the places, characters and emotions with some wonderful descriptive methods which made the first few paragraphs come to life although, you may did it a bit too much which may overworked the description of the story so, just try to minimize just a bit of that and it will be fine.

Second, yet again, you may overdo with the flashback parts but, it is still acceptable and there are a few minor grammatical errors here and there but, that's normal and you can certainly improve on that. Your vocabulary is sublime though and I like that.

Overall, it's a great fanfiction and this is just chapter one, so keep working on it and really looking forward for the next few chapters of this Merlin fanfiction. Keep moving forward mate!

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Points: 380
Reviews: 3

Mon Dec 14, 2015 8:12 pm
alexagk01 says...

I am a really big fan of Merlin and I really enjoy reading fan fiction about it. Its sad that there aren't many Merlin fan fictions out there and I really enjoy the first chapter. It really left me hanging and wanted to know what will happen next. I can't wait what's in store. I really love the story so far. You are a really talented writer.

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209 Reviews

Points: 10769
Reviews: 209

Wed Nov 11, 2015 8:32 pm
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artemis15sc wrote a review...

Hey Pendr! I love that you wrote Merlin fanfiction. And I'm a big fan of original characters, so I'm excited to see how this develops.

I know asking about more chapters makes me the biggest hypocrite in the world, but seriously. I hope there's more to come.

My first thought concerns your beginning. You clearly have a grasp of visual description, but I'm not sure it's the best hook for your story. Is there a way you could mix some tension in at the beginning. Maybe she's tired and she remarks at how inviting/univiting the castle looks. Maybe she finds it intimidating, and she's scared they won't let her in. There's a lot of things you could do to grab your audiences interest right at the beginning while still getting to describe Camelot.

I would also look some more sensory description besides visual. i want to know more of what things sound like, feel like, smell like, if taste like if you can. You can find ways to weave this into your story so it doesn't slow it down too much, but it would do a lot to make this scene come alive. And it's Camelot. We definitely want it to come alive. xD

Okay, I've got a couple more little comments before I let out my inner fangirl.

It’s been years, and I have no idea what Lancelot has done this whole time.
In this sentence you slip into the present tense. And you stay in present tense for the rest of the paragraph. I think this because it's your character's thoughts, but I would reccoemnd sticking to past tense. Switching tenses can be confusing, and this section would make perfect sense in past tense.

My other comment concerns her backstory. I loved it. Someone who's parents were killed by Uther coming to Camelot sets up so many amazing conflict possibilities. That being said it was a little unexpected, and not in a good way. if she were visiting the place where the man that killed her mother had lived and where his son currently lived, she would probably be experiencing a lot of negative emotions, perhaps even fear. You could add a lot of tension to the story by having her express these negative emotions, but letting us see the reason for them until she sees the tapestry. If you want some ideas on how to do this I can brainstorm with you, just let me know.

Now lets back up again. I don't know about you, but for me fanfiction is just supposed to be fun. That being said it's also a great way to improve your writing craft, which is why I made the comments that I did. but honestly, as fanfiction this story did exactly what it was supposed too. It brought us into this world under a re imagined light. It was interesting, accurate, and had me squealing with excitement every time one of my favorite characters popped on stage( so to speak).

So as long as you keep doing that, keep having fun and enjoying yourself. It'll be a great story.

Thanks for sharing!


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Points: 490
Reviews: 2

Tue Nov 03, 2015 4:25 pm
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Samyam25 wrote a review...

So a review here since I love fantasy stories:
The story has a great feeling of atmosphere to it, starting with light things of common life such as the houses and the people and moving onto the darkness of monarchy, as shown in the tapestry and Eleanor's memories of her mother and King Uther. The tapestry also shows what a lot of Europe was feeling during the "witch-hunting" times, so this part is actually historically correct. While a little vague and shaky at the beginning, the description explodes as soon as you enter the castle. Phrases such as "Regal, rich wood doorway" paint a vivid image of the royalty at the time. While character description is not that deep, it gives us some insight in the people of this world. Now the introduction of Merlin at the end was my favorite part(I'm 99% sure it's Merlin, unless it's based off the original stories where he's an old man), you can immediately see something is not quite right here. For example, the boy (presumably Merlin) calls the king of Camelot "Arthur"! Think about it: The ruler of a kingdom, probably the most important man in the whole country, and this simply calls him "Arthur".
In conclusion, while the story is a bit quick and a bit shallow, with some background knowledge it springs into life around you and you just can't get enough of it. I cannot wait for the next part, keep it going!

pendr says...

Wow XD I'm surprised you liked it so much! I attempted to focus a lot on detail in this, since that's usually something I struggle with. Character description is another big thing there. It's also very important to read the letter prologue to get the gist of what's going on, at least in my opinion. I will work on the description of people and the beginning, thank you :).
Yes, the teenager is Merlin, Arthur's servant. In the BBC show, which this is a fanfic of, Merlin is a young sorcerer who has basically another identity as an older man (it's so hard to explain). One reason their relationship is awesome is because Merlin can be so blunt, real, and rebellious with Arthur that he doesn't call him King or Sire most of the time. I'm so glad you caught onto that because it's shows a lot about their relationship and mutual respect.
Thanks so much! This helped a lot! -Pendr

Despite everything, it's still you.
— TobyFox