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Merlin: Something To Talk About by Aleathiel - Oh, I liked this one. It's very fluffy, it's all about Merlin weathering the other servants' gossip about him and Arthur, then having to deal with his actual feelings starting to bubble to the surface, and Arthur just being really kind of wonderful and generous the entire time because he actually is like that at heart. It's a simple piece, but it was solid, the writing was clean and smooth, the characterization was good, it was all the things it needed to be and put a smile on my face by the end. Especially because of how much Arthur really would do for Merlin if he could. Just. Yes. <3 (Arthur/Merlin.)


Merlin: Of Evil Plots and Idiot Princes by yo_mawari - Omg, Merlin as done in a Terry Pratchett style! The first scene and its notes was especially hilarious, I totally cracked up at least twice in that first one alone and the whole fic... well, the whole entire premise was cute, that Morgana and Gwen decide that something needs to be done about Arthur and Merlin. It has lots of really humorous moments--the misunderstandings never got old, the author pulled them off so very well--and was adorably cute and just. So much fun. (Arthur/Merlin.)


Merlin: Just Like Magic by yo_mawari - Another short one that ends in fluff (but you knew it would from the beginning) with just enough humor to make it really sweet and wonderful. It's all too easy to imagine Arthur saying an off-hand comment that's surprisingly hurtful, given the way he was raised and how he still struggles with being a kinder person, and apologizing in his own way for it. I adore this Merlin as well, both still wary of Arthur and angry at him, but also totally in love with him and not one to hold grudges when Arthur's being genuine. I really adored the narrative for Merlin here as well, it fit his character nicely. <3 (Arthur/Merlin.)


Merlin: Supervision by special_schizo - One thing we don't know much about yet is Merlin's father and I really liked what this author did with the idea of him, the way he was woven into the storyline and the potential for what could come next as well. (Though, it stands well as a oneshot, too.) The sense of magic and other creatures that are waiting in the wings and trying to get by in Camelot and just. It was really interesting and a cool little piece of speculation. (Arthur/Merlin.)


Merlin: Got Your Tongue by nightanddaze - a;sldkfja;slkj oh god I love this fandom so much. It's only a few months old (possibly not even that) and there's so many fics with actual plots in them and I loved this one so, so much. I mean, the summary was Merlin stares at the cat for a few seconds. The cat stares back. so I figured it had a chance at being good. And I'd like the author's previous fics. But a;lskdjfalskj I wasn't expecting something quite this wonderfully amusing and sweet and charming and feeling in the spirit of canon. I'm trying to figure out how to talk about it without giving away the best parts, just that... the characterization was great, the plotting and pacing and writing were great, and it's one of those fic ideas where... it takes a certain kind of author to pull it off, but when they do, it is fabulous. And boy was this one ever. (Arthur/Merlin.)


Merlin: Vows by solarcat05 - Yes, yes, yes, YES. I HAVE BEEN WAITING FOR A FIC LIKE THIS. One of the best bits of the Merlin series is that dragon, I fucking love it and this fic plays brilliantly with it and, I swear, the fic starts off kind of crackishly, but it's deliberate and you have to keep with it and it pays off so hard. The entire second half of this short fic had me laughing so hard I nearly choked on my drink. Hell, I'm still laughing. ♥ (Arthur/Merlin.)


Merlin: By The Skin Of Your Teeth by Knowing Shadows - a;lskdfjaslkj this fic shouldn't have worked so well, but somehow the author pulls it off rather brilliantly. It's adorable and the sex was very, very nice (bless the author for including porn in the adorableness) but what really sold me is... yes, Merlin's brain-to-mouth filter is so completely damaged that I could totally see him just blurting that out one day. asl;dkfjas;lkj kind of crying over it. (Arthur/Merlin, hard R to light NC-17.)


Merlin: Discovery by solarcat05 - [Note: This fic will probably make more sense if you've read the two previous fics in the series.] Have I mentioned in the last five minutes how much I fucking love that dragon? No? Because I do. And I love this series. This is so delightfully adorable and fluffy and happy and makes me crack the hell up every time I read a fic in this series and just. Just. The imagery here, the sheer idea of what Arthur and Merlin discover in that cave. I laugh every time I think of it, the author's style just hit me absolutely perfectly for this one. (Arthur/Merlin.)


Merlin: The King's Command by Ras Elased - Episode 4 was one of my favorites from the series (for obvious reasons), so fic that's a coda for that episode? Yes plz. And I liked this one, I liked Arthur all bundled up energy and anger, even as most people wouldn't notice it, how he obviously cares a great deal about Merlin, but cannot let that out. The writing of this piece is lovely and the characterization works well and it has a lovely emotional punch to it. <3 (Arthur/Merlin.)


Merlin: Damsel in Distress by The Hoyden - So, I took a couple of days off to just catch up on some other stuff, but after watching 1x12 I kind of really had to dive right back into the fandom and I saw that this fic had been posted and a;sldkfjaslkj I totally dove onto it and omg I just-- Crying. Crying the whole way through this fic because it's brilliantly hilarious and there are so many lines I want to quote and there were at least three times I laughed so hard I had to just stop and get it out of my system before continuing. I love the dragon in this fic, I love the whole premise of it--a dragon kidnaps Merlin and flies off with him, while Arthur follows--and the execution of it is just brilliant. Brilliant. I cannot express my love with mere words. XD (Arthur/Merlin.)


Merlin: "Can you even read?" by ingenius_inc - Oh, it's lovely to see this author showing up in the Merlin fandom and I do really want to see more from her, but this short little piece is lovely already. It's very cute and fluffy, just about Merlin getting wrapped up in his books and Arthur not being terribly pleased about this and it's really just... warm and fuzzy to read, the sense of playfulness between them. And I totally had fun with Arthur's perspective here. XD (Arthur/Merlin.)


Merlin: Quickening Days by Fahye - [ part 01 - part 02 - part 03 ] - So I'm a couple of days behind on recs because I took some time off to go watch some TV. The totally smart thing to do, instead of choosing some reasonable length fics to read first, is to go for the 20,000+ word one, right? Right. But as;ldkfjaslkjs after a slightly rough start, this fic got so interesting and I could not put it down at all. The author did everything right here--the characterization and dialogue and plotting and pacing and writing were all solid and engaging, it actually had a genuine plot that could have come out of an episode itself, aside from the eventual makeouts. And I loved that it was actually about Arthur and Merlin's relationship dynamic, rather than just being a fic that's an excuse to wind up to the makeouts. (Not that I don't love those, too.) But this one was also about the plot and it was wonderfully detailed, the things they had to overcome and fight against to save the day, the way it touched on magic and everything that makes Merlin such a fun fantasy show.

But it was more than that, too. Of course there are a lot of fics that deal with Arthur finding out about Merlin's magic, but they never get old and this fic is one of the ones that leave me feeling satisfied with how long the show is making us wait for that. I also really like this Arthur, who you can see will one day be the great king that he's destined to become, even if he still has things to overcome yet. And asdlfkjal;skjs the sense of fun this fic had! Once the main plot is resolved, they actually get to have a little fun and it's so adorable and you can tell how much Arthur really cares about Merlin even as he's totally a prat about it. I admit, I clicked onto this fic to read one of my favorite subgenres of the fandom--Merlin inna dress fic ♥--but wound up staying for the fabulously epic plot. *__* (Arthur/Merlin.)


Merlin: A Year and a Day by linaerys - So, right after I read a 20,000 word fic, I pick up a 10,000 word fic. Right. Well. At least I'm moving in the sensible direction, I suppose. But it was another fic that I just could not put down, no matter that it was 3am and there were a million other things I should have been doing. The language and writing of this fic were just gorgeous, the world building and the details put into it were breath-takingly lovely, there was a real etherial atmosphere to the entire piece that fit it so beautifully. It's a fic that's hard to describe--Arthur joins the Fairy court for a year and a day, meeting Merlin there, long before they know each other--at least not with any degree of expressing how gorgeous the fic really was. The details, the background, the use of magic and magical creatures, the writing, the characterization, the atmosphere of it, everything was. So hard to describe but so pretty and so entrancing a read. It's really easy to see it fitting together with canon as well and the author even thoughtfully provided a light sex scene and action sequences. Bless. ♥ (Arthur/Merlin, some R to light NC-17 content in one scene.)


Merlin: The Sword in the Stone by lavvyan - As much as I love that the show is remixing or just reinventing Arthurian legend however it pleases, sometimes it's really neat to see stories that touch on the more traditional Camelot stories and I liked the mixing of the two types here, it was very clearly AU, but also still using the current series that we've gotten to know. Plus, the whole sword in the stone bit is one of my favorites and I particularly enjoyed the little twist to this one. XD (Arthur/Merlin.)


Merlin: Three Castles by Pru - [ part 01 - part 02 ] - You know, I wasn't sure what I was getting from this fic when I first started to read it, I assumed that it took place in canon proper, so I was rather confused about the setting at first. It's slightly AU, but once I got my head around that, I enjoyed it quite a lot, it was light-hearted and fun and all about the snappy interaction between the characters and the amusement of watching all the hijinks. I think I had a smile on my face pretty much the entire time I was reading and the ending was totally satisfying and there should totally be more fic where Arthur is engaged to some visiting nobility and hijinks ensue fic. XD (Arthur/Merlin.)


Merlin: What He Truly Is by linaerys - So, it was only a matter of time before I started getting into the "Merlin accidentally casts a spell on Arthur" fics, I'm only surprised it took me this long. XD But this one was really sweet, because it could have been kind of skeevy, especially if Merlin had reacted differently, but even with the lightest of spells, he obviously was kind of horrified. The tone the author struck, between Arthur slowly starting to be nicer to Merlin, the way the spells and Merlin's thoughts were worded, it all felt like it was just the right tone. Plus the writing and characterization are solid, it was a really good read. <3 (Arthur/Merlin.)


Merlin: A Little Fire to Warm by janne_d - You know, I hadn't realized until I read this fic how much I really kind of missed the old-school staples of slashfic--the hypothermia excuse for two characters snuggling has always been a good one and there should totally be more of it. I want more of it now. :< But this was a nice start, it had a really solid Merlin voice and I actually really loved Gaius' voice in this as well, plus it had that... warm and toasty feeling, which was really nice when I was feeling kind of cold today. <3 (Arthur/Merlin.)


Merlin: Gloves On by Bruceybabe - One of the best things about this fandom is that it's not really shy about providing the porn and sometimes I just want a pwp fic in the middle of reading all the epic fics. Not that epics are bad (or lacking in porn much of the time) but sometimes I just want something that stands on its own and has some very pretty imagery, which this fic fulfilled for me. <3 (Arthur/Merlin, a light NC-17.)


Merlin: The Beast of Winter by linaerys - There are some fics that are just so very satisfying, no matter how much I read from this fandom. I loved everything about this fic--the characterization and dialogue, the lovely writing, but mostly the way it blended some of the previously established Arthurian legend (which, of course, the show cheerfully remixes, but it's kind of fascinating to see it re-blended with this series again in the right author's hands) with a sort of monster of the week story. "Arthur fights a beast out of legend." is such a simple concept for the story, but it's so wonderfully paced and so fascinating to read and so deeply satisfying by the end that I just... a;sdlkfjaslj this rec sucks, but it was a fantastic story. To the point that, as much as I loved it, the sex was pretty far down on the list of reasons I adored the story, instead I was more interested in the characters and their relationships. There are some fantastic details here and I kind of really love this Arthur a lot and it was just... a really compelling story. (Arthur/Merlin, R-rating.)


Merlin: Unknown Side Effect by elandrialore - And sometimes a fic doesn't have to go beyond an R rating (a rather light-ish R at that, I would have said) to be kind of really hot. It's a really lovely story about a drugged Camelot court, trying to get Arthur back to his room without mishaps, and it going about like you'd expect it to go. I love this Arthur, this line in particular summed it up rather wonderfully for me: Arthur kissed like he acted, arrogant and clever, and still a bit vulnerable for all that. Arthur really is an amazing character and even when he's half-drugged, all of what makes him so interesting still shines through. But, really, you're only half reading for that, you're also reading because it's a lovely R-rated fic. <3 (Athur/Merlin, not quite SFW.)


Merlin: Of Swords and Pricks by slanted_edges - This post contains two things I wanted to recommend--first is the really awesome fanart based on a couple of other fics, the artist does a really amazing job with the characters and how on-target they look. But I also really liked her fic, just a simple thing of Arthur watching Merlin polish the sword and, no, that's not a euphamism. XD But it does bring to mind images (deliberately so) and has this really lovely way about it, the whole tone of the piece is almost soft, there's something very... well, graceful about it, as Arthur watches Merlin and his thoughts can't help wandering a little. *__* (Arthur/Merlin, not quite SFW.)


Merlin: Crooked Heart by Shanti - I have this fascination with potential interaction between Merlin and Morgana, I want to see it played with and I'm not sure I necessarily need it to be romantic in nature, but I'm not running for the hills screaming, either. So, I picked a fic with a summary that sounded interesting (Fate makes for difficult choices, and difficult goodbyes. Set in the not-so-distant future.) and some Arthur/Merlin implied, and I figured I should be okay. What I didn't expect to get was one of the most breath-taking fics I've seen in the fandom yet--this portrayal of Morgana is stunning and fits with her character so very well. The strength of character she has shown us more and more, the gorgeous turns of phrase in this fic, the way it clenched my fangirl heart and wouldn't let it go, the emotion of the piece just as lovely as anything. It's beautifully written and beautifully executed, I just... you know the ending is coming and yet it's no less impactful for it, rather more like... being inevitable, which the author does beautifully with. (Merlin/Morgana, some implied future Arthur/Merlin, Arthur/Guinevere, and Lancelot/Guinevere.)


Merlin: Smirking by otempora42 - Again, I'm not sure I want romance with Merlin and Morgana so much as I want interaction between them, I really want them to find out about each other's magic at some point, so a fic that deals with the moment when Merlin thought she'd found out about his magic was a delightful piece for me to read. It has a solid Merlin voice and it didn't push things too far, just the right sort of tone for a post-ep coda. <3 (This is gen, but it could imply some Merlin/Morgana.)


Merlin: Once and Future by Shanti - asldf;kjaslkjlkj you know I used to not read AU fics, but Merlin has destroyed all that and now I eat them up like candy. I'm even reading modern day AU fics that only have one chapter (a;dslkfjaslkj *claws at the walls in pining*) because I liked the author's other work and I wanted to see how she'd write a fic with actual Arthur/Merlin in it and a;lsdkjfaslkj I don't know whether I love it most for that or for the concept itself. Because it's beautifully written and there's a ton of wonderful little details in it and it's solidly characterized and the world building is fantastic and a;sldfkjasl;jk I WANT THE NEXT PART SO BAD OMG. (Arthur/Merlin, future Morgana/Gwen, NSFW in this chapter.)


Merlin: Once and Future by Shanti - asldf;kjaslkjlkj you know I used to not read AU fics, but Merlin has destroyed all that and now I eat them up like candy. I'm even reading modern day AU fics that only have one chapter (a;dslkfjaslkj *claws at the walls in pining*) because I liked the author's other work and I wanted to see how she'd write a fic with actual Arthur/Merlin in it and a;lsdkjfaslkj I don't know whether I love it most for that or for the concept itself. Because it's beautifully written and there's a ton of wonderful little details in it and it's solidly characterized and the world building is fantastic and a;sldfkjasl;jk I WANT THE NEXT PART SO BAD OMG. (Arthur/Merlin, future Morgana/Gwen, NSFW in this chapter.)


Merlin: the things they never tell you in the job description by phantomjam - Okay, I actually totally love the dragon in the show, it's so great and you know it's fucking with Merlin on purpose sometimes. So, crackfic set from the pov of the dragon? I was delighted to read this. And it's really cute and fun (even if I sometimes felt badly for the dragon XD) and there were some really funny lines in this. Also, god knows I'd probably do the same thing as Arthur and Merlin in this one if I had to deal with the dragon, too. XD (Arthur/Merlin.)


Merlin: Meteorology by Fahye - And, of course, back to Arthur/Merlin (even though this is more on the level of the show than it is with the making out times) because they are what my heart truly wants. And this fic was delightful, it was all about the various ways Arthur can really be kind of a dick or just generally impossible to deal with, except that Merlin is learning how to deal with him anyway. I adore it because it shows the surprising complexity of Arthur's character, that he isn't just the annoying prat he seemed at first and Merlin knows that more and more with every passing day. I love the various scenes and the different moments they share, the way their friendship shows through in so many different ways and through different moods. It's fabulous for that. And also for the scene with the horse, I swear I had to stop reading for a moment just to laugh because that hit me so perfect. Just. *happy sigh* It's totally worth staying up until 4:30am to read Merlinfic if I get something like this. (Arthur/Merlin.)


Merlin: Springtime Promises by linaerys - I'm actually sort of nearing my fill of Merlin fics that blend the canon of the series with the traditional Arthurian legends (not the fault of fandom, but more that I've read too many too close together) but I couldn't resist one more, because this author writes such gorgeous stories. The level of detail and world-building here is just as wonderful as ever, the Druid Isle and its festival, the use of Nimueh and magic, all of it wove together really beautifully with the language and imagery used here. And I loved that there was this tone of... something legendary, sometimes with such a bright future that it was wonderful, sometimes with the feeling of doom inevitably pulling on these characters and their choices, brilliantly done by the author. But even more than that, it's the progression of Arthur and Merlin's relationship here that really attracts me to the fic, the way sex is a part of it, but it's about so much more than that, it's the bond between them that continually grows stronger and stronger. I love fics that deal with the future great king that everyone knows Arthur will become, even if he's not quite there yet, but the foundation is being laid down here and this was wonderful for that as well. And even Morgana! I had some issues with her at times, but I think her final scene really revealed a lot about her and her motivations that make her still very human and I could reconcile it with the character on the show. So just. All around, this was a gorgeous fic, the kind that I sat there and read all 10,000 words in one sitting because I couldn't put it down and only wished that there were another sequel to follow it. *__* (Arthur/Merlin, somewhere between R and a light NC-17.)


Merlin: There Are No Legible Signs by franticsga - I was sort of wary of reading this one, because it's listed as pre-slash and a;lskdjfal;sjk I want my slash right now, dammit, but. Well. I actually do like pre-slash fic a lot and this one had a really great set of voices for the characters and narrative, it had a really good premise (and asl;dkfjaslkj Merlin's sore muscles after 1x10 and I could practically feel the tension in him and it slowly being molded out of him) and it's one of those that was just solid and fun to read, the dynamic between Arthur and Merlin was fantastic. It actually didn't need anything more than exactly what it was. <3 (This is gen, but if you like Arthur/Merlin, you should like this.)


Merlin: Pulling Rank by waldorph - I love episode coda fics. *__* Especially ones that are all about the porn and Arthur's frustration and anger and Merlin really kind of wanting him rather desperately and yet still showing the differences between Arthur and Uther, how much different Arthur will be as king, even as he is loyal to his family. The mood changes a little quickly in this piece for me (but, then, I'm all for Arthur pinning Merlin wherever he wants to, shut up) but that was actually sort of nice, because the sex is much nicer this way and a;sldkfjalskj I love these two adorable guys. <3 (Arthur/Merlin, somewhere between R and NC-17.)


Merlin: Sick Leave by waldorph - Another slashfic staple is when one character gets sick and the other is nice to him for awhile and a;sldkfjals;kj GOD I LOVE BEING IN A FANDOM LIKE THIS AGAIN. It's like every fanfic cliche of my mispent youth, except made awesome again. And this one was darling, it had a really fun Gaius POV, which worked well for the story and didn't push the Arthur/Merlin too hard, but you still got all the good stuff out of it and just. a;lskdfjalsjk warm and fluffy and happy, I am. This was super adorable, both for the being nice while Merlin was sick and for the way they still bicker even then. <3 (Arthur/Merlin.)


Merlin: so magical by snakevsladder - So, I was just saying how much I love all these fanfic cliches coming up again, because they were so awesome? And then GIRL MERLIN FIC YES YES YES YES. And it is just as TOTALLY FUCKING AWESOME as I'd been hoping for, I don't think I stopped grinning so hard my face hurt the entire time I was reading this. The writing and dialogue and characterization of this are wonderful, they're just spot-on and sharp as all hell and just. So funny. And and and. This was kind of really hot even though it was only PG13 and I cannot tell you how much I enjoyed this and omfg fandom loves me a lot. Sometimes we can have nice things. ♥ (Arthur/Merlin.)


Merlin: the way the sunshine gleams by snakevsladder - 1x04 was one of my favorite episodes, it was kind of really, really gay, so a coda for that particular one? I wandered right on over to read it and it was a nice little piece, all awkwardness and feelings and trying to find a way to muddle through everything that's really kind of complicated, but they find a way somehow. It's got solid characterization and writing, Merlin's perspective on Arthur and how he feels about him, even when Arthur is kind of a dick sometimes, is really nicely done. (Arthur/Merlin.)


Merlin: .extant by thisissirius - [Note: This fic contains spoilers for the preview of 1x13.] Obviously this was written between episodes 1x12 and 1x13, taking the half a minute of footage from the preview and writing a fic based around the scenes and it may be entirely Jossed next week, but it also still creates something really wonderful that stands on its own. There's a real emotional punch here, an intensity to the piece with some gorgeous imagery, and it's just. Really good. (Arthur/Merlin.)


Merlin: Ozymandias by solarcat05 - Of course things turned out a little differently after 1x04 (which I assume this was written shortly after?), that Arthur still doesn't know about Merlin's magic (or at least not outwardly know, one could make a case that he just hasn't said anything, I suppose...) but that doesn't take away from the readability of this fic. I adore this fic because it's so much of what I see happening with Arthur--as fascinating and strong of a king that Uther is, Arthur is slowly seeing him to be just a man and wanting to be a better king, because that's what the point of Arthur's journey is, what you can already see with his character. The way he's growing into an even better man, which this fic does a really beautiful job of illustrating. And as;ldkfjasl have I mentioned in the last five minutes how much I love Arthur and fic like this? (Arthur/Merlin pre-slash, but it's pretty gen for now.)


Merlin: Just Lie Back and Think of Camelot by Lassiter - You know what never gets old? Fics where Merlin really is a terrible manservant, but Arthur kind of has fun at his expense, in a non-dickish way. ...for the most part. Arthur teasing Merlin in his own way is delightful and it's easy to see how much he likes Merlin here and I'm not explaining this very well, but it does have a really fun Arthur narrative and some great voices for the characters. Also, the final part of this one was, um. Very nice. *__* My favorite bit is the alternate title, though, and why I clicked pretty hard on this fic: Or, "Four Ways Merlin is a Crap Servant and One Way He Isnít Oh, Who Are We Kidding. Five. Five Ways." (Arthur/Merlin.)


Merlin: No Idea Why by doomcanary - Meg pointed this link out the other day and do you know what I love about Merlin fandom? That there are stories with opening lines like The annoying thing about Merlin being drunk, reflects Arthur, is that he tends to start thinking magic is really, really funny. and Merlin gives himself a tail and the best part, the best part is that neither I nor Meg had to drag anyone into this! The fandom volunteers for stuff like this! It's kind of amazing, like England is single-handedly making up for all of Japan's slack in this. This fic was very amusing and a very cute read this morning, I adored it. (Arthur/Merlin, some implied Morgana/Gwen.)


Merlin: Sleep by doomcanary - [Note: There are spoilers up through 1x11 in this fic and this rec.] This is just a really pretty little piece set post-1x11 with some really lovely imagery to it, some lovely writing, and a quiet sort of intimacy with all the emotions that are running high after Arthur drank from the goblet. I've read a few fics post-1x11 and I always like them, this one being no exception, I really loved how much magic you could feel around them in that place on the beach, even if Merlin wasn't using any himself. <3 (Arthur/Merlin.)


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