Hug Me

  • Title: Hug Me
  • Fandom: BBC Merlin
  • Characters: Merlin, Arthur
  • Pairing: General
  • Summary: Arthur refuses a hug, and Merlin pouts.
  • Rating: T
  • Word Count: 570

Merlin couldn’t help but pout – though he would deny that he was, in fact, pouting, if accused – as he watched Arthur take several steps backwards, avoiding Merlin’s outstretched arms. It was beyond infuriating, because honestly, what was the big deal? It was just a hug! Just one, measly and totally harmless little hug was all he wanted.

“Get back to work, Merlin,” Arthur demanded of the warlock, turning away completely to head to his writing desk, though he cast a glance around the room. “This place is a mess…What were you even doing all morning?”

“Running errands for Gaius,” Merlin answered sulkily, as he headed towards Arthur’s bed to straighten the dressings and refluff the pillows. He paused, though, still put out by the denial of a hug, and turned to face the king. “Why won’t you hug me?” he asked out loud, unable to choke the question back. Immediately after, he winced and began berating himself for being lame enough to inquire such a thing.

Arthur, caught off guard by the question, blinked and shook his head slowly. He looked over at his manservant, a look of disbelief and bewilderment on his face. “Why would I hug you?”

Merlin bowed his head, and turned it so that Arthur wouldn’t see his reddening cheeks. He shrugged. “I don’t know. It’s just, Gwaine hugs me. Lancelot hugs me…Hell, I’ve even hugged Leon and Percival once or twice before. Yet at the mere suggestion of a hug, and you act as though I’ve got a contagious decease or something…I’m just curious.”

“Have I hurt your feelings?” the blond mocked not unkindly, rather amused by the subject and how bothered by his refusal of a hug Merlin seemed.

“No, ‘course not,” Merlin denied.

Arthur saw right through the lie, though, and after a long moment of silence and contemplation – and in Merlin’s case, embarrassment – he sighed. Rolling his eyes, the king stood up from his desk and made his way over to Merlin. Hesitating for only a moment, Arthur reached out to Merlin and grasped him by the shoulders, spinning the startled younger man around, before pulling him forward, his arms encasing slender shoulders in a warm, but awkward, bear-like hug.

He didn’t answer the question. He couldn’t. He had no real answer for why he always avoided Merlin’s hugs except for his generic, go-to one – that he was a king and kings do not hug. It was a lame answer. So Arthur said nothing and instead, gave the man what he so clearly wanted.

Merlin was surprised – shocked, really – but pleased as he felt Arthur pull him into the hug. He might even have squeaked a bit in response to suddenly finding himself chest to chest with the king of Camelot. Face on fire, but with a dopey grin plastered across it, Merlin eagerly accepted the hug.

After a rather long, drawn-out moment of awkward patting on the back, Arthur cleared his throat and finally pulled away, retreating back towards he desk.

“There. Are you happy?”

Merlin grinned widely and nodded, “Yeah…” A few minutes of silence passed between them, and then, “Hey Arthur?”

“Hmm?”

Another pause. “Thanks,” he said.

Arthur tried to scoff, but it sounded more like a huffy snort, and he shot Merlin a look from across the room. “Don’t be such a girl, Merlin…now get back to work! This place is still a mess!”

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