Title: One Slip Too Many
Word count: app. 481
Arthur stomped through the snow at a furious pace determined to make it back to Camelot before night fall; Merlin on the other hand took a more sedate approach having fallen over multiple times already.
“Get a move on, Merlin!” growled Arthur impatiently. “You’re acting like a child.”
Merlin didn’t miss the irritation in Arthur’s voice and instinctively speeded up; when his feet hit yet another slippery spot he fell unceremoniously to the ground and let out a small offing noise as he landed with a dull thud. Concerned, Arthur immediately stopped and turned to look towards his manservant.
When their eyes met Merlin smiled a feral grin and grabbed a handful of snow, packed it tight into a snowball, quickly wound up and let it fly. “If you’re going to call me a child I might as well act like one.”
Arthur’s eyes widened as he watched the snowball travelling towards him at super speed and for a brief moment he didn't move; but then, as it drew nearer he gathered his wits and sprang into action and ran, shouting over his shoulder. “Merlin, you are so....” Arthur never got the chance to finish his sentence; instead, he got a face full of snowball.
Merlin beamed as his snowball hit its target full on, but when Arthur’s head whipped back from the impact and he fell, face first into the snow and lay there, unmoving, the smile quickly disappeared and Merlin jumped to his feet and crossed the distance between them at lightning speed; his heart pounding hard and fast as fear gripped at him as he slid to a stop next to his friend and dropped to the ground.
“Arthur! Arthur, are you ok? Talk to me.” Guilt and worry tore through Merlin as he carefully rolled his friend over.
What he saw shocked him. Arthur was lying in his arms with a great big cheesy grin on his face.
“Got ya!” Arthur reached up and grabbed hold of Merlin's jacket, paused for just a fraction of a second as his grin widened even further and then yanked down hard, pulling Merlin forward as he skilfully rolled himself out of harm’s way.
The young warlock landed on his back with a thud; puffs of snow swirled happily around him as Arthur swiftly jumped to his feet, dusted himself off “Now come along, Merlin we haven’t got time to play these silly games, night fall is approaching.” and took off leaving Merlin with his mouth hanging open.
Merlin closed his mouth, put his heart back in his chest and yelled, “You are such a dollop head!”
Arthur waved his arm flippantly in response and yelled, “We’ve already covered this, Merlin. The word doesn’t exist.”
Merlin grinned, jumped to his feet and brushed himself off. “Of course, Sire, how stupid of me. I meant to say doody head!”