AN: Hi guy's, I think this is a kind of a strange story. It is a lot of different what if's going on in one story. What if Merlin was a girl called Melinda and what if Arthur was raised away from Camelot not knowing he was a prince and what if the two of them had grown up together and Arthur knew all about Melinda's magic all along.

The dragons call (part one)

No young person no matter how great can know their destiny nor can they know how history will remember or misremember them. So it is for the two young friends arriving at the gates of Camelot, a young man and woman that will one day pass into legend.

It was a bright sunny day when two new comers arrived in Camelot's market place. They did not seem any different from the many new faces that passed thought Camelot's gates every day but they were different. They were very different indeed; little did the people of Camelot know that these two young people would one day lead them into a golden age.

At first glance it would be easy to assume that both of the new comers were male. One was tall, broad and blond the other was small and wiry with a mop of dark hair but on closer inspection despite the tunic and breeches she wore the smaller of the two was clearly not a boy. Her features were too delicate to be male and the mop of dark hair was in fact a mass of long curls desperately trying to escape from a tightly wound bun.

Both the boy and the girl looked around them in wonderment but the boy did a better job of hiding his amazement than his companion. Camelot was far grander than anything either of them had ever seen. They couldn't help shooting each other bright smiles that seemed to say can you believe we made it

As they made their way across the castle court yard they were drawn into a crowed that was forming beneath a grand balcony. Up on the balcony they could see the king surrounded by his knights. As the king addressed the crowd both youngsters suddenly realised what they were about to witness, a man not much older than them self's was about to lose his head for using magic.

The girl froze in place she could not move, she could not think of anything but the poor young man before her and how she could easily share his fate.

The blond man could see the fear that his friend was feeling reflected in her eyes. He tried desperately to pull her away but the crowd was so dense that he could not get them far away enough to avoid hearing the sickening thunk as the axe came down.

When they were finally free of the crowd the pair looked back to see the man's distraught mother vowing to take her revenge on King Uther. She vowed to take his son from him with her eyes fixed on a slightly scruffy looking knight that was stood beside him. When Uther ordered her arrest she vanished using her own magic.

As the crowd began to disperse the young man pulled his friend aside he looked around making sure that no one could hear them before he spoke.

"Melinda look at me" he demanded forcing her to lift her eyes from his boots.

"That's not going to happen to you, I won't let it" he looked straight into her eyes and promised her

"I don't need you to protect me Arthur" Melinda told him trying to push her fear of discovery to the back of her mind

"I'm not going to get caught" she reassured him

"Just like no one was going to find out back home" he challenged

"You and Will were the only ones that knew, if he had just kept his big mouth shut Mother would never have sent me here"

"Just promise me you will be careful" he pleaded with her grasping her arm so she couldn't just walk away from him like he knew she would.

"Fine, I promise. Now can we go and find Uncle Gaius"

Arthur reluctantly released her and the two of them set off in search of Gaius the court physician and Melinda's uncle.

It didn't take them long to find Gaius's cambers after they got directions from one of the palace guards

Melinda carefully made her way into the room trying to avoid the clutter that covered every surface while Arthur waited in the doorway

"Hello, Gaius?" Melinda called out looking around but no one answered her and she couldn't see anyone, she was about to leave the chambers and look for her uncle somewhere else when Arthur caught her attention by waving at her and pointer upwards.

Sure enough when Melinda looked in the direction that Arthur had pointed she finally found the man she had been looking for; he was stood on a rickety looking balcony colleting an armful of books. He was so high up that he hadn't heard Melinda enter or calling his name.

"Uncle Gaius" she called up to him in a much louder voice than she had used before. Perhaps she called a little too loudly because Gaius gave a startled jump and the balcony gave way beneath him.

Melinda didn't have time to think before her natural instincts kicked in, she felt the familiar heat of magic race though her veins and the flash of power in her eyes. Almost instantly Gaius froze in midair as time seemed to slow to a crawl.

Melinda heard the slam of the door behind her and realized that only Gaius's time had slowed down the rest of the world had continued as normal which meant she could easily have been discovered especially considering that Arthur had only just shut the door to Gaius's chambers.

"I thought you were going to be careful?" Arthur snapped angrily at her.

"It's not my fault and besides what was I supposed to do? Let him fall to his death?" Melinda asked just as angrily

"So magic just dose it's self when you're around dose it" Arthur accused

While Arthur was yelling at Melinda nether or them noticed Gaius's bed was sliding across the room and positioning it's self beneath him until the loud bang he made as he crashed down onto it when time returned to normal made them both jump.

"Apparently so" Melinda answered Arthur accusation with a smug smile but her smile vanished when she was faced with an angry Gaius.

"Which one of you did that?" he demanded

"Emmm" Melinda floundered not sure what to say

"Neither of us did it, we don't know how that happened" Arthur cut in confidently with a smooth lie

"Don't you lie to me young man" Gaius ordered

"Now which one of you was responsible for that?" he pointed towards his bed.

"Me" Melinda whispered fearfully

"How did you learn that? Who taught you?" Gaius demanded

"No one" Melinda answer quickly

"Don't think you can fool me girl" Gaius almost spat

"Magic must be learnt and studied, now who taught you"

"She has told you no one and that is the truth" Arthur told Gaius crossly stepping in to defend his friend

"For as long as I have known Melinda she has be able to do things others can only dream of but she has never done any harm with her abilities" he explained defensively hoping desperately that the old man would keep quite long enough for him and Melinda to get out of Camelot

"I was born this way" Melinda confirmed softly

It seemed that Gaius finally believed them as he calmed down quite a lot quite quickly

"Who are you?" he asked in a bemused fashion

"Oh we have a letter" Melinda quickly slipping the note her mother had written for them out of her pack and into Gaius's hand

"I haven't got my glasses" Gaius told them matter of factly

"I'm Melinda" Melinda told him

"Melinda?" Gaius repeated the name as if it should mean something to him but he just couldn't remember what

"Hunith's child" he asked finally remembering what the name meant to him

"Yes" Melinda beamed

"You're not meant to be here until Wednesday" he told Melinda crossly making the smile fall from her face

"It is Wednesday" Arthur told Gaius coolly

"Oh" said Gaius clearly surprised

"And who might you be?" Gaius asked him in a much friendlier tone than the one he had been using before

"He's the prat that didn't believe I could get all the way to Camelot on my own" Melinda answered for him with a cheeky grin

"I had every faith in you getting to Camelot Melinda; it was your ability to keep yourself alive once you got here that I doubted" Arthur explained to his friend with an equally cheeky grin

"And do you have a name or shall I just call you prat" Gaius asked finding it impossible not to be drawn into the obvious camaraderie that the two young people shared

"I'm Arthur" Arthur told Gaius and offered his hand to shake

Gaius shuck Arthur's hand while giving him a strange look, it was as if he were trying to look deeper into Arthur. Arthur assumed he was trying to decide whether or not he could be trusted to watch over Melinda but Melinda wasn't sure there was an almost haunted look in Gaius's eyes that concerned her.

"Well, I suppose you will want to settle in" Gaius said after finally releasing Arthur's hand

"Melinda that will be your room" Gaius told her pointing over his shoulder at a door just behind him

"Arthur you will have to share the main room with me there is a cot over there you can use" he said waving vaguely to the right.

The cot that Arthur was meant to sleep on was a low bunk covered in books and medicine jars but that didn't bother him at all, Gaius knowing about Melinda's magic bothered him much more.

Arthur caught Melinda's arm to prevent her from leaving when she tried to move towards the room Gaius had pointed out to her.

"Your not going to say anything about that, are you" he asked Gaius pointing to his free had toward the destroyed balcony to illustrate what he meant by "that"

"No" Gaius reassured them both by giving them the first genuine smile they had seen from him since they had met him

"But I should say thank you for saving my life Melinda"

Melinda just smiled brightly as brushed passed both men and making her way into her new room. Arthur was turning towards his cot when Gaius's hand on his shoulder stopped him

"And thank you Arthur for taking such good care of her"

Arthur couldn't help but smile at the real affection he could hear in the old man's voice and he couldn't help but feeling bad for misjudging him so badly. It was obvious that Gaius cared about Melinda and that he wouldn't let anyone know about her magical secret, for the first time since leaving Ealdor Arthur felt truly safe

AN2: Hi again guys I could really use some feedback on this one as I'm not sure what to think of it myself. It set up camp in my brain and wouldn't let me work on anything else until I had written it. Should I continue? Let me know.

Thanks for reading

Millie