Hay Guy's this is a direct continuation of the last chapter, I hope you like it
Down in the main hall the guests had already begun to arrive and Merlin was busy ensuring nobody's cup ran dry. He was not too busy to notice Arthur and his knight buddies as they entered he also noticed that Arthur's friends didn't seem to have his full attention.
He was laughing and joking with them but every few moments his eye's would flicker towards the halls double doors, it was clear to Merlin that Camelot's Prince was waiting for someone to arrive.
Moments later it became clear to Merlin just who's arrival Arthur was awaiting so eagerly. The Lady Morgana glided into the room wearing a burgundy and gold gown and a smug look on her face that told everyone who looked upon her that she knew she was the most beautiful woman in the room
Merlin had to hold back a snigger at the star struck look that was plastered across Arthur's face as Morgana sauntered past him with little more than a nod of her head to acknowledge his presents
Fearing that if he continued to watch Arthur he wouldn't be able to hold his laughter at bay any longer Merlin turned away quickly, so quickly in fact that he almost collided with Gwen who was just behind him
He was saved from making and uncomfortable apology by Arthur signalling for the band to stop playing and the sudden hush that filled the hall.
The double doors opened again this time the quite squeak of their hinges sounded like a deafening scream in the in the now silent hall. The soft click of heels preceded the entrance of Camelot's normally reclusive Princess
Anna didn't move as gracefully as Morgana at the best of times but with all the gentry of Camelot staring at her she was sure she was going to fall right off her borrowed heels and flat onto her face, thankfully Arthur knew her well enough to know if she was going do this she would need his help to get though it
He approached her with his arms held open a beaming smile on his face
"Sister" he greeted her warmly before placing a kiss on her knuckles
"You honour us with your presents this evening" he told her
Anna dipped into the best curtsey that she could while worrying that she was about to lose her tiara
"The honour is mine dear Brother" she replied sweetly playing the role of the polite and flattered Princess as Morgana had suggested she should
Arthur offered Anna his arm and led her thought the still staring crowds towards the high table. The hall had never seemed as long to Anna as it did at that moment and she had never felt quit as relived as she did when Arthur finally helped her to slip into her seat.
It wasn't until Arthur had returned to his knights that Anna realized where it was she had been seated, a new chair had been added to the high table so there were now four. Anna's chair was directly to Uther's left between him and Morgana.
"You are allowed to move, you know" Morgana told Anna with a grin as she appeared at her side.
"I think I am less likely to fall and make a spectacle of myself if I stay right here" Anna said with a laugh
"But don't let me keep you" she told her friend knowing how much Morgana loved to socialise at these things
Morgana gave Anna one last reassuring smile before moving to speak to Arthur
Merlin had been stunned by Anna's sweet and gentle beauty when she had entered just like he had been earlier in the day but now he found himself mesmerized by Morgana's intoxicating beauty, he couldn't stop his eyes from following her as she crossed the room
"She looks great doesn't she" said Gwen proudly
"Yeah" Merlin agreed enthusiastically
"They both do" he added as he watched Anna rise to her feet and join Arthur and Morgana's conversation, obviously board of sitting alone
"Some people are just born to be Queen" Gwen sighed her gaze fixed on Morgana
"No" Merlin protested, he may have only met Morgana once but he was sure she was too nice to marry a prat like Arthur
"I hope so, one day" Gwen told him earnestly she had no doubt that her friend would make a wonderful Queen
"Not that I would want to be her" she added as an after thought
"Who would want to marry Arthur" she asked sounding slightly appalled
"Oh come on Gwen I thought you liked those real ruff tuff save the world types" Merlin teased his new friend
"No, I like much more ordinary men like you" Gwen was quick to correct him it was on the tip of her tough to mention that Anna preferred ordinary men too but Merlin's laugh stopped her
"Trust me Gwen, I'm not ordinary"
Gwen flushed bright red and rushed to defend herself, she needed to throw of any suspicions that Merlin may have that she felt anything other than friendship for him
Across the room Anna and Morgana watched Gwen interact with Merlin her cheeks had a rosy glow and she was gesturing as wildly as she could while holding a jug full of wine
"I think Gwen has a crush" Anna commented softly
"I don't think she is the only one" smirked Morgana
"I don't know what you could be implying" Anna said primly trying desperately to hide behind the mask of a Princess
"Oh don't you?" Morgana asked playfully
"I hardly know the boy" Anna reminded her indignantly
"Oh come on" Morgana laughed
"I saw the way you two looked at each other earlier" she persisted
"Why didn't you tell me he was there before I came out?" Anna asked knowing it easier to change the subject than convince Morgana she was wrong
"Would you have come out if you knew?" Morgana asked answering Anna's question with one of her own
Before Anna could say anything else the trumpets sounded to herald the arrival of King Uther. Anna followed both Morgana and Arthur's lead and returned to her seat as quickly as her skirts would allow
When Uther reached the high table he gave each of the young people standing behind it a warm smile before beaming at the gathered gentry
"We have enjoyed twenty years of peace and prosperity" he said addressing all those before him
"It has bought the kingdom and myself many pleasures but few can compare to the honours that fall to me this evening" he told them
"It is with greatest pleasure that I welcome my Daughter, Princess Anna to her rightful place in the court of Camelot" Uther announced officially presenting Anna to the court for the first time
A polite smattering of applause filled the hall; Anna acknowledged it with a gentle nod of her head
"It's now my honour to present Lady Helen of Mora" Uther introduced Camelot's special guest proudly
The applause for Lady Helen was louder and more enthusiastic than it had been for Anna and everyone took their seats waiting for the long awaited performance to begin
Lady Helen was stood on a small stage where everyone could see her, she looked like an ethereal goddess of beauty and the haunting melody that filled the air matched that image
The stories that Merlin had heard about the beauty of Lady Helen's voice had not been exaggerated but her voice also had an effect that he had never heard about, people began to fall asleep.
At first it happened slowly, a yawn here and a head nod there but then more and more people were slipping into slumber. Merlin clapped his hands over his ears to make sure he didn't join them
Lady Helen glided towards the high table with a sinister smile on her face. Anna was fighting to stay awake but she knew it was useless as Lady Helen continued to sing she felt herself finally give in a drift off to sleep
Merlin watched in horror as Lady Helen summoned Anna to her side with just a flick of her wrist. The witch -as Merlin now knew her to be- clamped one arm around Anna's waist to keep the sleeping girl upright while producing a dagger from the sleeve of her other arm and taking aim at the sleeping Prince
Merlin's magic reacted to the situation before he fully registered what was happening. He felt the flash of power in his eyes and the witch froze, time had stopped for her but it moved on for everyone else.
Merlin's spell only lasted a moment but a moment of silence was all it took for all those affected by the witches' magical song to awaken.
Anna was one of the first awake and she instantly began to struggle against the witches hold but being frozen in time made her impossible to escape
Morgana was suddenly aware that all the candles had gone out and she was coved in cobwebs. As she got to her feet and cleared herself off she glanced over to check on Anna but found that she was gone
"Anna" Morgana cried in shock and fear when her eyes finally found the girl she thought of as a sister being held by Lady Helen against her will
Morgana's cry bought every eye in the hall to rest on Anna just as the witch who still looked like Lady Helen unfroze. A look of confusion flickered across her face but she didn't let it halt her plan
With all eyes on the struggling Anna no one noticed the dagger in the witches hand or where it was aiming until she let it fly.
"Arthur" Anna screamed out a desperate warning just as the dagger left the witches hand
Arthur had been so focused on his Sister and wanting to save her that he didn't see the danger he himself was in until she warned him and by then it was too late. He could see Dagger spinning towards him but he knew he couldn't avoid it he wasn't sure he if he was even going to have time to close his eyes before it struck him but he was going to try
Again Merlin's magic reacted instinctively without his permission but he wouldn't have stopped it if he could. He didn't freeze just slowed down enough for him to reach Arthur and pull him out of the way of the dagger before it hit its mark
Time resumed its normal flow as the two young men crashed to the ground, Camelot's Prince had been saved but the crisis was not over. Realizing that her plan to kill Uther's Son had been foiled the witch reverted to her true form and held on tight to his Daughter
The whole court could now see Mary Collins for who she truly was and they all remembered the threat of revenge she had made against Uther. They could also remember how she had vanished into a swirl of magic using her pendant
It was with a wave of fear and horror that everyone in the hall realized she intended to do it again but she wasn't going to disappear alone, she had every intention of taking Anna with her
Anna struggled valiantly but it seemed to have no affect and those around her were afraid to approach her in case that caused Mary Collins to hurt her.
With a sudden rush of fear Anna realized that she was trapped and if she couldn't get herself loose before Mary Collins finished the incantation that she was whispering then she would be at the mercy of the witch.
Anna slammed her heel down onto the hag's foot in a bid to free herself but Mary didn't even stubble over the mystic words she was mumbling
Anna had never felt so alone and defenceless as she did in that moment. She felt panic begin to rise within her and cloud her head but suddenly clarity cut though the fog in her mind, she wasn't defenceless Arthur had made sure of it
After a moment of desperate groping Anna managed to free one of the concealed daggers from her belt, she bought it swiftly across Mary's hand slicing deeply into the skin.
Mary howled in agony and released her hold on Anna. Anna made the most of her well earned chance. She ran from Mary Collins as fast as she could and stumbled into the first pair of friendly arms that she found which belonged to Morgana
As soon as Anna was a safe distance from her captor Merlin's magic took control again but this time it had his full consent, he felt the fire of magic burn inside him seconds before the halls heavy chandelier crashed down on to Mary Collins ending her life instantly.
Merlin had never heard a silence like the one that settled in Camelot's grand hall in the wake of Mary Collins death.
Arthur and Uther seemed to be in a state of shock and Anna was warped in Morgana's arms trying not to disgrace her Farther by crying
"You boy" Uther pointed at Merlin who was still stood beside Arthur
Merlin felt his heart freeze in his chest, was it possible that even in all the commotion and whilst both his children's live were in danger that Uther had noticed his use of magic
"You saved my son's life, a debt must be replayed" Uther announced
"Em- well" Merlin mumbled too relived at not getting found out that he couldn't really think of anything to say
"Don't be so modest, you shall be rewarded" Uther told him
"No honestly you don't have to your Highness" Merlin said as he finally got a hold on his nerves
"No absolutely, this merits something quit special" Uther insisted
"You shall be awarded a position in the royal house hold, you shall be Prince Arthur's man servant" he said as if it were the greatest honour he could bestow
"Farther" Arthur protested but Uther ignored him and moved on to check that both Anna and Morgana were alright whilst the rest of the hall erupted into applause
MERLIN MERLIN MERLIN MERLIN MERLIN MERLIN MERLIN MERLIN
Later that evening Merlin had been summoned by the Prince who was also his new master but unfortunately he had gotten lost trying to find his way to the prats chambers.
He wished that Arthur could have left him alone for the night Gaius had just given him a book of magic to help him in his destiny of protecting the Prince and he wanted to spend the night reading though it
"Are you lost again Merlin?" asked a soft voice from the shadows behind him
Merlin turned quickly to face the owner of the voice but he ended up crashing into her instead and sending them both tumbling to the ground
It wasn't until they were on the floor that Merlin realized just who the voice belonged to
"We really must stop meeting like this Merlin, people will start to talk" Anna teased purposely not mentioning that Gwen and Morgana where already talking
"I'm sorry your Highness" Merlin apologised though his laughter
As he helped her to her feet he noticed she was still in her dress from earlier but she had removed all her finery he also realized that he preferred her like this.
"Please Merlin to the man that saved my brother's life I'm Anna" she told him firmly
"Alright Anna" he acquiesced
"I am glad to see you are well" he said repeating the same words to her as she had said to him earlier
"Thank you Merlin" she said
"And not just for your concern" she continued
"Thank you for what you did" she told him
Merlin felt the fear of discovery flash though him once more only to have it quashed when Anna spoke again
"You saved my brother's life and as much as I agree that he can be a bit of a prat at times, he is still my brother and I love him dearly" she explained
"So again thank you, I don't think I can ever repay you" she admitted
"Well" Merlin said flashing her a cheeky grin
"You could give me directions to his chambers so he doesn't behead me for keeping him waiting"
Anna laughed softly before pointing down the hallway he had just come along
"You you go along here and turn Left" she told him
"And don't worry Arthur won't cut off your head" she reassured as he set off
"He'll only put you in the stocks"
"Oh only the stocks, that's all right then" Merlin called back sarcastically turning right
"Left Merlin" Anna called out from the end of the hall
Merlin shot her a sheepish smile before correcting himself and heading towards Arthurs chambers.
"One things guaranteed" Merlin muttered to himself as Arthurs doors came into view
"Living in Camelot is never going to be dull"
So there is Dragon's call finally finished and it only took me a year (Ha Ha) please let me know what you think and whether or not you want to see more from Anna and co
Thank you so much for reading