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The Language of Courtly Love (Merlin)

The Language of Courtly Love
Pairing: Arthur/Merlin
Rating: PG
Wordcount: 403
Warnings: unabashed fluff
Summary: Merlin has a secret admirer.

The first time a bouquet appears on Merlin’s bed, it’s Gaius who identifies the flowers as purple lilacs, but it’s Gwen, sparkling with hidden laughter, who tells him he has a secret admirer. She explains the floral language of love that everyone in the court of Camelot understands—everyone except Merlin, of course.

Wary, he leaves a bundle of lavender on his bed for his pursuer to find. It means distrust, Gwen says, but sometimes devotion. Not that Merlin wants to send mixed messages when he hardly suspects who his admirer might be.

Soon Merlin warms to the game, and spends hours plotting his replies with Gwen. The bouquets go back and forth. Chrysanthemums and jonquils, a demand for attention, returned with white violets of modesty. Gwen thinks Merlin shouldn’t be too bold, not when he has no idea who is sneaking into his bedchamber. He receives an apology of daffodils for respect and unrequited love, so leaves chestnut and daisies, tied with string. Innocence, and an invitation.

He tells Arthur about the flowers, laughing it off and expecting the prince to feign astonishment that anyone would ever leave his hapless manservant flowers. Instead Arthur goes quiet, and something about the way his gaze meets Merlin’s makes Merlin flush hot and rush off, his insides in turmoil.

The admirer gets bolder, leaving coriander—Gwen blushes—and hibiscus. Merlin suggests they hide behind the curtain and wait for the admirer to come again, but Gwen admonishes him. So they gather snowdrops from the palace gardens, and Merlin’s heart races in anticipation whenever he returns to his chambers.

Finally one day Merlin darts into his room, whistling off-tune and hoping for a new bouquet, only to stop short. For Prince Arthur is waiting there, arms crossed behind his back and the strangest expression on his face.

Heart hammering, Merlin asks, “What’s wrong?” No flowers lie across his bed, he notices.

Arthur’s eyes dart to the bed, so quick Merlin almost thinks he imagined it. “Nothing at all,” the prince says firmly. And just like that he thrusts out to Merlin a bouquet of roses, deep true red and burning orange. “Desire. Passion. Love, even. Take them, you idiot.”

Merlin steps forward and slowly takes the roses. Their scent wafts up, so sweet. Somehow he isn’t surprised, has always suspected.

“And stop grinning like a buffoon,” Arthur adds, seizing Merlin’s head and catching his mouth in a bruising kiss.

Comments

( 73 comments — Leave a comment )
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twisting_fate9
Jan. 2nd, 2010 02:58 am (UTC)
OH TEH CUTE.

this is lovely.

“Desire. Passion. Love, even. Take them, you idiot.”

teeehee
winged_dreams
Jan. 2nd, 2010 03:36 am (UTC)
Aw, thanks! :)
sozuki17
Jan. 2nd, 2010 03:00 am (UTC)
This was so adorable! And Arthur's lines were perfect and made me grin like a madman. Or a buffoon even. XD
winged_dreams
Jan. 2nd, 2010 03:36 am (UTC)
:) Glad you liked it!
na_shao
Jan. 2nd, 2010 03:01 am (UTC)
It really was lovely, totally like them. Merlin was so cute !

Great work, well done. Thanks for sharing. ♥
winged_dreams
Jan. 2nd, 2010 03:37 am (UTC)
Aw, thank you for reading!
lolryne
Jan. 2nd, 2010 03:13 am (UTC)
I LOVE the final sentence XDDDD
winged_dreams
Jan. 2nd, 2010 03:37 am (UTC)
:D Glad you liked!
pearl_star
Jan. 2nd, 2010 03:13 am (UTC)
GO ARTHUR! Oh that is just too sweet of him, know we know he's a complete softie for Merlin underneath that macho complex ^.^
winged_dreams
Jan. 2nd, 2010 03:37 am (UTC)
:D Thanks for reading!
laurapetri
Jan. 2nd, 2010 03:23 am (UTC)
“Desire. Passion. Love, even. Take them, you idiot.” Only Arthur could make that a declaration of love. LOL
winged_dreams
Jan. 2nd, 2010 03:37 am (UTC)
Indeed. :) Thanks for reading!
kwylink
Jan. 2nd, 2010 03:39 am (UTC)
That's so Arthurian; even when he's insulting Merlin, he's saying "ilu." I love Gwen helping Merlin plan out his replies using flower-code.
winged_dreams
Jan. 2nd, 2010 04:44 am (UTC)
:) Glad you enjoyed it!
lawgoddess
Jan. 2nd, 2010 03:39 am (UTC)
Very clever and fun.

I wonder what coriander means, to make Gwen blush.

This was totally adorable! Thanks for writing it.
winged_dreams
Jan. 2nd, 2010 04:45 am (UTC)
Thanks for reading it! Here is where I got my info on the flowers.
tetsubinatu
Jan. 2nd, 2010 03:49 am (UTC)
That was so adorable! (And I looked up language of flowers/coriander and snowdrops!)
winged_dreams
Jan. 2nd, 2010 04:46 am (UTC)
Glad you liked it! :)
voldything
Jan. 2nd, 2010 03:51 am (UTC)
awwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwww ♥
winged_dreams
Jan. 2nd, 2010 04:46 am (UTC)
:D Thanks for reading!
shadowess
Jan. 2nd, 2010 05:08 am (UTC)
oh this is wonderful! I love the exchange and the various meanings of the flowers.
winged_dreams
Jan. 2nd, 2010 05:25 am (UTC)
:) Thanks for reading!
rotrude
Jan. 2nd, 2010 05:23 am (UTC)
Sweeeeet, Say-it-with-flowers!Arthur is definitely one of my favourite versions of him. And Merlin's responses were adorable. His initial distrust is so reasonable but cute and Arthur's final choice was very nicely romantic!
winged_dreams
Jan. 2nd, 2010 05:25 am (UTC)
Aw, thank you for reading!
phonetur_k
Jan. 2nd, 2010 05:31 am (UTC)
This is incredibly lovely.
winged_dreams
Jan. 2nd, 2010 05:31 am (UTC)
Aw, thank you!
(Deleted comment)
winged_dreams
Jan. 2nd, 2010 07:12 am (UTC)
:) Thanks for reading!
talkstosheep
Jan. 2nd, 2010 05:48 am (UTC)
THEY'RE SO ADORABLE I CAN'T STAND IT!

hehe, thanks for this, it's the cutest thing i've read in ages!
winged_dreams
Jan. 2nd, 2010 07:12 am (UTC)
Aw, I'm so glad you enjoyed it!
xbriyeon
Jan. 2nd, 2010 06:00 am (UTC)
I generally find flowers a total romantic cliche (but perhaps probably that's just me) but I have to admit that this was rather cute. xD
winged_dreams
Jan. 2nd, 2010 07:13 am (UTC)
And we all know Arthur is secretly a romantic. :D Thanks for reading!
lady_drace
Jan. 2nd, 2010 06:31 am (UTC)
D'aaawwwwww.
winged_dreams
Jan. 2nd, 2010 07:13 am (UTC)
:)

Thanks for reading!
snottygrrl
Jan. 2nd, 2010 06:33 am (UTC)
i love the language of flowers and herbs.

this is so sweet ♥
winged_dreams
Jan. 2nd, 2010 07:13 am (UTC)
Glad you enjoyed it!
montmorency
Jan. 2nd, 2010 06:38 am (UTC)
Darling and adorable! If you have more I'll have to friend you. ;)
winged_dreams
Jan. 2nd, 2010 07:17 am (UTC)
This is my first Merlin fic, actually, but you might find something else you link over at my master fic list. Thank you for reading!
(no subject) - montmorency - Jan. 2nd, 2010 07:45 pm (UTC) - Expand
shepherds
Jan. 2nd, 2010 06:42 am (UTC)
:'-) this was just too sweet and charming and adorable
winged_dreams
Jan. 2nd, 2010 07:17 am (UTC)
Aw, thank you!
denija
Jan. 2nd, 2010 10:06 am (UTC)
“Desire. Passion. Love, even. Take them, you idiot.”
God, that line is a killer. *tries to breathe easy*

awwww, so cute! ♥
winged_dreams
Jan. 2nd, 2010 07:20 pm (UTC)
:) Glad you liked it!
(Deleted comment)
winged_dreams
Jan. 2nd, 2010 07:21 pm (UTC)
Aw, you're welcome! Glad you liked it.
waeter
Jan. 2nd, 2010 01:13 pm (UTC)
Awwwwwwwww! :D Very sweet.
winged_dreams
Jan. 2nd, 2010 07:21 pm (UTC)
Thanks! Glad you enjoyed it.
harknessgirl
Jan. 2nd, 2010 01:31 pm (UTC)
So cute! Loved it. Thank you for sharing.
winged_dreams
Jan. 2nd, 2010 07:22 pm (UTC)
Thank you for reading!
penelopyxl
Jan. 2nd, 2010 01:48 pm (UTC)
This is beautiful, I loved it.
winged_dreams
Jan. 2nd, 2010 07:22 pm (UTC)
Thank you, glad you enjoyed it!
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( 73 comments — Leave a comment )

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