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KILGHARRAH
In a land of myth and a time of magic, the destiny of a great kingdom rests on the shoulders of a young man. His name: Merlin.

[Merlin, Arthur, Gwaine, Leon, and Percival are riding out in the forest.  Merlin is unaware of where they are going.  Then, he catches sight of a King's stone head lying in the grass, and realises they are heading for  the Valley of the Fallen Kings.]

MERLIN
Arthur? You are not serious.

KING ARTHUR
What else do you have in mind?

MERLIN
Anything. Nothing good ever happens in the Valley of the Fallen Kings. No one in their right mind would go in there.

SIR PERCIVAL
Exactly.

KING ARTHUR
The route's a secret, Merlin. That's why we chose it.

[A band of armed men rush down the hillside yelling.]

MERLIN
Not so secret after all.

[Arthur throws off his cloak.]

KING ARTHUR
No need to get cocky!

[More men rush down from the other hillside. The knights draw their swords. Cavalry charges them from behind.]

SIR PERCIVAL
Yaaah!

[Percival charges and cuts a man down from his horse. The man tucks and rolls to his death. Arthur fights with a man on foot and is pulled off his horse. Arthur cuts him down and fends off another attacker, but Merlin dismounts as he sees a horseman charging Arthur from behind.]

MERLIN
Arthur!

[Merlin holds out a hand, his eyes glow, and the horseman falls off and is dragged behind his horse. Arthur finishes off his attacker. Merlin turns just in time to see a horseman, who swings a mace into his chest. Arthur slices another attacker and stops in horror when he sees Merlin sprawled limply face first on the ground.]


OPENING CREDITS

--

[02:03, EXT. VALLEY OF THE FALLEN KINGS - DAY]
[Arthur supports Merlin's weight as they hurry through the forest, pursued by the mercenaries. They hide behind some tree roots and the pursuers pass by.]

MERLIN
They need to work through their anger.

KING ARTHUR
They just did, on you.

[Merlin chuckles through his pain. Arthur looks disconcerted by Merlin's condition.]

--

[02:40, EXT. VALLEY OF THE FALLEN KINGS - NIGHT]
[Arthur supports Merlin's weight as they make their way through the forest.]

KING ARTHUR
A night's rest and you'll be polishing my armour. They could definitely do with a scrub.

[Arthur eases Merlin down against a fallen log, takes off his glove and checks Merlin's wound. Merlin looks at the wound and up at Arthur, struck by the role reversal. Arthur tries to make light of it to cover how bad it looks.]

KING ARTHUR
I've seen worse. I've definitely seen worse.

MERLIN
On a dead man [smiles]

KING ARTHUR
You're not going to die, Merlin. Don't be such a coward!

MERLIN
If I do die, will you call me a hero?

KING ARTHUR
Probably.

MERLIN
But whilst I'm still alive, I'm a coward?

KING ARTHUR
That's the way these things work, I'm afraid. You get the glory when you're not around to appreciate it.

MERLIN
Well...unless you're the king.

KING ARTHUR
Come on, it's got to have some advantages.

MERLIN
You have a very good servant.

[Merlin smiles at his joke, but can't block out the pain.]

KING ARTHUR
You're right. I do. A servant who's extremely brave. And incredibly loyal, to be honest. Not at all cowardly.

[They share a poignant look.]

MERLIN
Thank you for saving my life.

KING ARTHUR
You'd do the same for me.

--
[03:58, EXT. VALLEY OF THE FALLEN KINGS - DAY]
[Birds chirp. Arthur starts as he hears twigs crack and a bird take flight. He looks over at Merlin who is still lying in pain. Arthur gets up sharply and sheathes his sword.]

KING ARTHUR
I'd love to say we can stay here and rest, but another ten minutes, we'll be mercenary mincemeat.

[He pulls Merlin up by the arm and lifts him into a fireman's carry.]

MERLIN
Leave me.

KING ARTHUR
Now's not the time for jokes.

MERLIN
Please leave me.

KING ARTHUR
Sure. Whatever you say.

[Arthur ignores him and heads off with Merlin on his back. Arthur comes to a set of stairs in a crevice and sees a mercenary at the other end. He sets Merlin down, who grunts in pain, and draws his sword. Arthur fights the mercenary. Another mercenary runs past Merlin and comes at Arthur from behind. Arthur kills the two men, but many more run past Merlin and rush into the crevice after Arthur. Arthur braces himself for the battle, but Merlin sits up.]

MERLIN
Gewican ge stanas!

[Merlin's eyes glow and boulders fall into the crevice, cutting off the mercenaries. Arthur realises he's being cut off from Merlin and panics.]

KING ARTHUR
Merlin!

[Boulders entirely fill the crevice. Merlin lies back exhausted and mercenaries pick him up.]

--
[05:25, EXT. VALLEY OF THE FALLEN KINGS - DAY]
[Agravaine leads the mercenaries as they drag Merlin unconscious to Morgana's feet.]

MORGANA
You lost how many men? And you bring me how many men? Or should I say, how many servants?

[Morgana angrily kicks Merlin over.]

AGRAVAINE
Arthur was within our grasp.

MORGANA
Oh, and that's supposed to make me feel better?

AGRAVAINE
The rock fall was hardly our fault. I must show my presence in Camelot. The old physician already suspects me.

MORGANA
Oh, Gaius is shrewd, you should take care. After all, if your true nature's revealed, I really don't know what use I'll have for you.

AGRAVAINE
Morgana...

[She turns away. He stops.]

AGRAVAINE
I'll dispatch this servant.

[Agravaine draws his sword and poises to strike.]

MORGANA
You will do no such thing. Arthur is strangely fond of the boy. He could prove useful. Very useful, indeed.

[Morgana walks off with a smile.]

--
[06:20, INT. MORGANA'S HOVEL - DAY]
[Morgana douses Merlin with a bucket of water and he jolts awake, hanging from the ceiling by his wrists.]

MORGANA
Good morning.

MERLIN
Is it?

MORGANA
Oh, don't be like that. We have a lot of catching up to do. After all, I haven't seen you since you condemned my sister to a slow and painful death, thwarted my plans to take over Camelot, and forced me to live in a hovel.

MERLIN
Couldn't do me a favour, could you? Let Arthur know he still thinks of me of an underachiever, but I'm quite proud of those accomplishments. I can die happy.

MORGANA
Oh, you're not going to die. Oh, no. I'm not going to make it that easy.

--
[07:09, EXT. VALLEY OF THE FALLEN KINGS - DAY]
[The Round Table knights search the woods. Leon directs the search, but hears something behind him and turns to attack. Arthur parries his swing. Leon smiles in relief.]

KING ARTHUR
Nice to see you, too.

[They clasp arms.]

--
[07:29, EXT. CAMELOT - DAY]
[The knights ride into Camelot.]

--
[07:33, INT. KING'S PALACE, COUNCIL CHAMBER - DAY]
[Gaius enters. The knights, Arthur, and Guinevere are already gathered.]

GAIUS
Where's Merlin?

KING ARTHUR
He's alive. Last I saw of him, he was still alive. (to Sir Leon) Dispatch patrols at first light. Scour every inch of that forest.

SIR LEON
Yes, sire.

[Leon and the knights exit.]

KING ARTHUR
We'll find him, Gaius.

[Arthur places a comforting hand on Gaius's shoulder.]

KING ARTHUR
We will.

--
[07:57, INT. MORGANA'S HOVEL - NIGHT]

MORGANA
You know, there's one thing I don't understand, Merlin.

[Morgana cleans Merlin's wound.]

MORGANA
You're Arthur's servant, nothing more. Yet, time and again, you've proved yourself willing to lay down your life for him.

MERLIN
What are you doing?

MORGANA
Have you never seen Gaius clean a wound before?

MERLIN
All right, I know what you're doing. What I don't know is why.

[Morgana grabs his face.]

MORGANA
I believe I asked you a question first. Why are you so loyal to Arthur?

MERLIN
I don't expect you to understand, Morgana. You have no sense of duty, no sense of loyalty.

MORGANA
You're wrong. Don't think I don't understand loyalty just because I've got no one left to be loyal to.

[Morgana places her hand over Merlin's wound.]

MORGANA
*spell*

[Morgana's eyes glow. She grabs Merlin's face again and shoves him as he falls unconscious.]

--
[09:11, INT. KING'S PALACE, COUNCIL CHAMBER - NIGHT]
[Agravaine and Sir Leon give their report to the council.]

AGRAVAINE
We have scoured the forest.

KING ARTHUR
Scour it again.

SIR LEON
Sire, there is no sign of Merlin.

[Agravaine approaches Arthur.]

AGRAVAINE
None...but...this.

[Agravaine places a scrap of Merlin's bloody jacket on the map in front of Arthur. Arthur stares at it.]

AGRAVAINE
I am sorry you've lost such a loyal and...

[Arthur holds up a hand, stopping him.]

KING ARTHUR
The mercenaries, what news of them?

SIR LEON
We found no trace.

AGRAVAINE
Surely sent by that snake Alinor.

KING ARTHUR
It can't be. How? Our route was known only to a few within Camelot.

SIR LEON
Then there's only one conclusion we can draw.

[He has the council's attention.]

SIR LEON
We have a traitor in our midst.

[Gaius looks slowly at Agravaine.]

--
[10:02, INT. MORGANA'S HOVEL - NIGHT]
[Morgana holds up a medallion with a snake-tree on it and incants a spell.]

MORGANA
*spell*

[Morgana's eyes glow and she casts the medallion in the flames. A hiss rises out of the metal bowl as the flames disappear. The snake-tree has come to life. Morgana smiles.]

MORGANA
I take it you've never met a Fomorroh before.

[The Fomorroh hisses and Morgana giggles evilly.]

MORGANA
Aw, he's a little grumpy.

[Morgana pets the Fomorroh.]

MORGANA
He's not used to being out in the light. No, my friend, I've called you from your depths for a very good reason.

[Morgana takes a dagger and slices off one of the Fomorroh's heads. It writhes, still alive, and another head grows back on the main body. Merlin looks on, unsettled.]

MORGANA
Fomorroh are creatures of dark magic. Even if you cut off their heads, you cannot kill them. Another will just grow in its place.

[Merlin glares at Morgana, dreading what's coming.]

MORGANA
In the days of the Old Religion, they were revered by the High Priestesses as they allowed them to control people's minds.

[Morgana approaches Merlin menacingly and he glares at her, disgusted.]

MORGANA
The Fomorroh will suck the life force out of you. Everything that makes you Merlin will be gone. And in its place there will be just one thought. One thought that will grow until it's consumed you completely. One thought that will be your life's work. You will not be able to rest until it's done. And that one thought is simple. "You must kill Arthur Pendragon."

[Morgana places the Fomorroh at Merlin's neck and it burrows into it, making him writhe in pain. It squirms under the surface of his skin.]

--
[12:26, EXT. CAMELOT - DAY]
[The sun rises over Camelot. Morning bells ring in the city.]

--
[12:30, INT. KING'S PALACE, ARTHUR'S CHAMBERS - DAY]
[Arthur stirs groggily as a rooster crows, joining in the morning bells. He opens his eyes to see a blurry vision that looks like a general outline of Merlin. He sits on his elbows and opens his eyes to focus and sees a very prim looking servant waiting at the end of his bed, dressed much like Merlin.]

KING ARTHUR
Who are you?

GEORGE
I am your new manservant, sire. I have polished your armour, sharpened your sword, selected your clothes. There is a slight chill in the air today, sir. And now, if you would allow me, I would like to serve you breakfast.

[Arthur looks over at the table and sees it covered in bread and fruit.]

KING ARTHUR
What's your name?

GEORGE
George, sire, at your service.

[George unfolds a napkin and places it over Arthur's chest as he lies in bed.]

KING ARTHUR
George, listen George, this is all very impressive.

[George places an extra pillow behind Arthur's head.]

KING ARTHUR
Very impressive, indeed, but I already have a manservant. All right, he's shabby looking, he has appalling manners...

[George hands Arthur a goblet.]

KING ARTHUR
...he's extremely forgetful. He seems to spend most of his time in the tavern.

[George hands him a plate.]

KING ARTHUR
But he is...

[Arthur looks at the cup and plate in his hand and George fetches a fork.]

KING ARTHUR
My manservant.

[Arthur hands the plate and cup back to George.]

KING ARTHUR
To be honest, I quite like it that way.

[Arthur tosses the napkin at George and scrambles out of bed, leaving George confused.]

--
[13:36, EXT. KING'S PALACE, MAIN SQUARE - DAY]
[Gwen follows Arthur out of the palace.]

GWEN
I am as worried about Merlin as you are.

KING ARTHUR
You're not going to change my mind.

GWEN
Who knows if the mercenaries have even left the forest?

KING ARTHUR
I have to go.

GWEN
The patrol's found no sign of him.

KING ARTHUR
Do you really expect me to accept that? Just to sit here and take their word that Merlin's gone? I won't rest until I at least try.

GWEN
I know, but just...do one thing for me. Please don't go alone.

SIR GWAINE
He won't be going alone.

[Gwaine rides up, ready to go. They turn to look at him.]

KING ARTHUR
See? Now you've condemned me to a day of mindless chatter.

GWEN
Good.

[Arthur places a comforting hand on her shoulder.]

KING ARTHUR
We'll return.

GWEN
You better.

[Arthur mounts and the two of them ride off.]

--
[14:23, EXT. FOREST - DAY]
[Merlin awakens in the woods, completely covered in mud.]

SIR GWAINE
You know what I like about Merlin? He never expects any praise. All these things he does just for the good of doing them.

[Arthur holds out his arm for silence, sensing something. They stop and dismount as they hear someone and draw their swords.]

KING ARTHUR
Declare yourself.

[The enchanted Merlin struggles out of the mud and steps onto the path. He laughs when he sees Arthur and Gwaine. Arthur lowers his sword in surprise.]

KING ARTHUR
Merlin!

[Arthur sticks his sword in the ground and walks over to Merlin.]

KING ARTHUR
I thought we'd lost you! Haha!

[Arthur gives the extremely muddy Merlin a big hug.]

--
[15:31, INT. KING'S PALACE, PHYSICIAN'S CHAMBERS - DAY]
[The Fomorroh writhes under Merlin's skin. Gaius serves Merlin supper.]

GAIUS
Don't do that again, Merlin. My heart cannot take the strain.

MERLIN
Yes, well, you are getting on a bit.

[Gaius looks at Merlin in surprise.]

MERLIN
What is this?

GAIUS
It's a special welcome home. Your favourite.

[Merlin takes one sip of the soup and gags.]

MERLIN
I think that you should stick to cooking up potions, Gaius. This tastes like the bog Arthur found me in.

[Gaius gives an uncertain chuckle.]

GAIUS
How did you escape?

MERLIN
With great skill. Can I ask you something?

GAIUS
Yes, of course. Anything.

MERLIN
What is the strongest poison that you possess?

[Gaius regards Merlin.]

MERLIN
I had this great opportunity to lace the bandits' food with poison and nothing to do it with.

[Merlin gets up and walks over to a table full of potions.]

GAIUS
Well, that would be aconite.

MERLIN
Ah--conite.

[Merlin spots it on the table and takes the bottle.]

MERLIN
Well, I think I should take some of this with me from now on. You never know when you might need to kill someone.

[Merlin takes off and Gaius mulls over Merlin's curious behaviour.]

GAIUS
Indeed.

--
[16:32, INT. KING'S PALACE, KITCHENS - DAY]
[Merlin prepares Arthur's meal. He finishes it off by dousing it with aconite, then places the bottle back in his jacket pocket. He bumps into the head cook.]

MERLIN
Mm. You stink worse than your food.

[One of the cook's assistants grins.]

HEAD COOK
Back to work. Or I'll be using your face to scrub that pot clean.

[The assistant turns back to her work.]

--
[16:54, INT. KING'S PALACE, PHOENIX CORRIDOR - DAY]
[Gwaine intercepts Merlin on his way to Arthur's chambers.]

GWAINE
Ah, Bog Man.

[Gwaine stops Merlin from passing as he sniffs the food.]

GWAINE
I have to say, you're smelling better.

[Gwaine pulls off his glove with his teeth and tries to take some food off of the plate.]

MERLIN
This is food for the king of Camelot, and is not meant to be soiled by your filthy fingers!

[Merlin is able to avoid Gwaine's grasp. Gwaine stares at Merlin as he grumpily hurries off.]

--
[17:07, INT. KING'S PALACE, ARTHUR'S CHAMBERS - DAY]
[Merlin walks in to find Gwen already serving Arthur a meal.]

KING ARTHUR
Thank you, Guinevere. That's very kind.

MERLIN
Oh, I might've known.

[Gwen pours Arthur's drink.]

KING ARTHUR
Hello, Merlin.

MERLIN
What's this?

KING ARTHUR
Erm...lunch.

MERLIN (to Gwen)
Look, I know you like to take every opportunity to be by his side...

[Gwen's smile fades.]

MERLIN
But this is just getting ridiculous. . . You'll be pouring his bath water next.

KING ARTHUR
Merlin, is something wrong?

MERLIN
This is what's wrong.

[Merlin points to the food Gwen brought.]

GWEN
I was just trying to help. I thought you needed some rest.

MERLIN
Rest? No, no, I don't need rest. Do you know how long it took me to prepare this meal? I cooked it myself.

[Merlin switches the plates.]

KING ARTHUR
I think this is just a case of a simple misunderstanding.

[Arthur switches the plates back.]

MERLIN
Ah, yes. Well, you would take her side, wouldn't you?

KING ARTHUR
Excuse me? Merlin, I think you must be tired. You've been through quite an ordeal.

MERLIN
I just want to resume my normal duties.

KING ARTHUR
Well, I'll be pleased to have your assistance preparing for the knighting ceremony later.

[Arthur hands Merlin's plate of food back to him.]

MERLIN
Thank you, sire.

[Merlin glares at Gwen. She gives an uncertain smile. Merlin starts to leave, turns to say something, then thinks better of it and exits leaving Arthur and Gwen looking at each other with confusion.]

--
[18:15, EXT. LOWER TOWN - DAY]
[Merlin walks down the street and tosses the plate into a pigsty.]

--
[18:19, INT. PHYSICIAN'S CHAMBERS - DAY]
[Merlin is pacing behind Gaius.]

GAIUS
Merlin, are you all right?

MERLIN
I--I'm pacing.

GAIUS
Yes, I can see that.

MERLIN
A man who is all right does not pace, Gaius.

GAIUS
Oh, well, that's why I asked.

MERLIN
I am wrestling with a problem and there are many factors to take into consideration, and I have not yet come up with a solution.

GAIUS
Can I be of assistance?

MERLIN (scoffs/laughs)
No.

GAIUS
Would you like to share the problem with me?

MERLIN
No.

GAIUS
Sometimes two heads are better than one.

MERLIN
Yes. But not when one of them's yours.

--
[18:57, KING'S PALACE, ARMOURY - DAY]
[Sir Leon puts away a sword and sees Merlin searching for something.]

SIR LEON
What are you after?

MERLIN
Arthur wants a crossbow.

SIR LEON
That one's ancient. Probably wouldn't hurt a fly.

[Merlin considers for a moment.]

MERLIN
Well, if you did want to hurt a fly, or even a human, what would you use?

SIR LEON
You would use a thing o beauty like this.

[Merlin is excited as Sir Leon pulls a shiny new crossbow off the wall.]

SIR LEON
Carved from fifty-year-old ash.

[Leon admires the crossbow, then hands it to Merlin with a smile. Merlin holds it as if to fire it.]

SIR LEON
Erm, be careful with that--

[Merlin accidentally releases the arrow and it blows apart a barrel across the room. Merlin stares open mouthed.]

MERLIN
Oh!

SIR LEON
Will that do the job?

[Merlin beams, excited.]

MERLIN
Oh, yes. That will do the job nicely.

[Merlin laughs gleefully.]

SIR LEON
Er, what is the job, exactly?

MERLIN (gleefully)
To kill Arthur.

SIR LEON
He's driving you mad, is he?

MERLIN (gleefully)
Not for much longer.

[Leon laughs as Merlin heads out with the crossbow and quiver.]

--
[19:42, INT. KING'S PALACE, ARTHUR'S CHAMBERS - DAY]
[Merlin sets up a crossbow booby-trap in Arthur's wardrobe. He tests it and the arrow flies straight into the bedpost. Merlin sighs excitedly.]

KING ARTHUR
Talk about a bad use of time.

[Merlin uses the bed curtain to hide the arrow while he pulls it out.]

KING ARTHUR
There's a potential traitor in our midst and I have to prepare for a knighting ceremony. Maybe it's one of the knights who wants to kill me.

[Merlin finally pulls out the arrow and closes the wardrobe.]

KING ARTHUR
Maybe it's you. Ha.

[Merlin tenses. Arthur notices.]

KING ARTHUR
Don't look so worried, Merlin. I don't really think you want to kill me.

--
[20:20, LOWER TOWN - DAY]
[Gwen walks by the pigsty and notices a crowd gathered around it. She skirts around to find an opening and sees Arthur's silver platter next to half-eaten food and a dead pig.]

--
[20:34, INT. PHYSICIAN'S CHAMBERS - DAY]
[Gaius holds the chicken up to his nose and sniffs it.]

GAIUS
Aconite.

[Gwen doesn't recognise the name.]

GAIUS
Wolfsbane to you. The most deadly poison known to man.

GWEN
What was it doing on Arthur's food?

GAIUS
Merlin took some from here earlier.

GWEN
He was really angry when he realised Arthur wasn't going to eat it.

GAIUS
He has been behaving very strangely.

GWEN
But why would Merlin want to kill Arthur?

GAIUS
Merlin wouldn't. Not if he was in his right mind.

--
[21:04, INT. KING'S PALACE, PHOENIX CORRIDOR - DAY]
[Gwen and Gaius pass Leon in the hallway.]

GWEN
Have you seen Merlin?

SIR LEON
He was in the armoury.

GAIUS
What did he want in there?

SIR LEON (chuckles)
A crossbow. I think Arthur must be getting on his nerves.

GWEN
Why?

[Leon checks the corridor.]

SIR LEON (whisper)
He said he was going to kill him.

[Leon bursts out laughing and walks off. Gwen and Gaius exchange a worried look. And start rushing to Arthur's chambers.]

--
[21:20, INT. KING'S PALACE, ARTHUR'S CHAMBERS - DAY]
[Merlin resets the wardrobe booby-trap while Arthur dresses.]

KING ARTHUR
What do you think about Percival?

MERLIN
Very big.

KING ARTHUR
Does that make him a traitor?

MERLIN
Are you going to get dressed?

[Arthur steps out from behind his dressing screen.]

KING ARTHUR
Have you got somewhere to be?

MERLIN
Percival's family were killed by Cenred's army. He hates everything to do with Morgana.

KING ARTHUR
You're right. And he has pledged his allegiance.

[Arthur walks over to the wardrobe and pauses with his hand on the doorknob, thinking. Merlin waits impatiently.]

KING ARTHUR
I'm wrong to doubt him. I need to put it from my mind.

[The Fomorroh writhes in Merlin's neck.]

MERLIN
You must get dressed.

KING ARTHUR
Indeed.

[Arthur opens the wardrobe, but the crossbow doesn't fire.]

KING ARTHUR
Elyan didn't ride out with us.

[Merlin lets out his breath, surprised that it didn't fire. Arthur closes the wardrobe and walks away.]

KING ARTHUR
Maybe he's concerned about my relationship with Guinevere.

[Arthur goes behind the dressing screen and Merlin stomps over to the wardrobe and opens it, narrowly dodging the arrow as it shoots into the bedpost. Merlin pulls it out.]

KING ARTHUR
Elyan, could he be the traitor? My father killed his father. Could you get me my ceremonial sword?

[Merlin gets an idea.]

MERLIN
Ceremonial sword. Of course.

[Merlin fetches it to kill Arthur.]

KING ARTHUR
I find it hard to believe that Elyan would think ill of me, but...can't trust anyone.

[Merlin tests out the sword.]

KING ARTHUR
In fact, I think you, Merlin, are the only person I can trust.

[Merlin raises the sword to strike just as Gwen and Gaius burst in.]

KING ARTHUR
I know, I'm late.

[Merlin rushes forward to attack, but Arthur moves and Merlin runs into the column and falls over. Arthur turns around and sees Merlin on the floor unconscious. He picks up the ceremonial sword, considers Merlin for a moment, and then strolls out. Gwen gives Arthur a fake smile on his way out. Merlin wakes and Gwen smashes a metal pitcher over his head, knocking him out again.]

--
[22:59, KING'S PALACE, PHYSICIAN'S CHAMBERS - DAY]
[Gaius reads an entry in a book as Gwen grimaces at the creature crawling under Merlin's skin.]

GAIUS
I feared as much.

GWEN
What is it?

[Gaius hands her the book.]

GAIUS
It's a Fomorroh.

[She looks at the drawing of it in the book.]

GAIUS
Whoever put it there was very highly skilled.

GWEN
What does it do?

GAIUS
In the days of the Old Religion, they were used by the High Priestess to enslave the minds of their enemies. Once a thought was planted, the victim would not stop till they'd accomplished it. First we must paralyse the serpent.

[Gwen hands him a bowl and Gaius dabs a saturated pouch on Merlin's neck. The Fomorroh grows still.]

GWEN
Is it dead?

GAIUS
Sadly not. Merely dormant. Now for the tricky bit. Pass me the blade.

[Gwen hands it to him. She grimaces as Gaius cuts it out. Gaius tosses it into the fire.]

GWEN
That's it?

GAIUS
I believe so.

GWEN (relieved)
We have the old Merlin back. Arthur is safe once more.

GAIUS
Let us hope so.

--
[24:22, INT. KING'S PALACE, AGRAVAINE'S CHAMBER - EVENING]
[Arthur slowly enters gravely as Agravaine sits at his desk. Agravaine leans forward and realises someone is there.]

AGRAVAINE
Arthur.

[Agravaine stands.]

AGRAVAINE
What an unexpected pleasure.

KING ARTHUR
There's something I wish to discuss with you, Uncle.

[Arthur enters slowly, his hand on his sword.]

AGRAVAINE
Of course.

KING ARTHUR
I'm afraid I don't take the matter of the traitor as lightly as you do.

AGRAVAINE
Sire, I hope you don't think I meant--

[Arthur holds up a hand to stop him.]

KING ARTHUR
I have been looking into how the mercenaries discovered the route through the forest. None of the knights had the opportunity to betray me. I have questioned the councillors. Only three were aware of the treaty. Of those, none but yourself knew of the route I was planning to take.

AGRAVAINE
Are you seriously suggesting that I--

KING ARTHUR
It brings me no pleasure to doubt you, Uncle.

AGRAVAINE
Then let me reassure you that you have no reason to doubt. You are all that is left of my dear sister.

[Agravaine steps closer to Arthur.]

AGRAVAINE
If I betray you, Arthur, I betray her, and that I will never do.

[Arthur still isn't convinced.]

AGRAVAINE
There is one other person who knew your route. Gaius.

--
[25:40, EXT. CAMELOT - DAY]
[The sun rises over Camelot.]

--
[25:44, INT. PHYSICIAN'S CHAMBERS - DAY]
[Merlin emerges from his room with a smile he gathers supplies from Gaius's work table. Gaius wakes. Merlin smiles.]

GAIUS
How do you feel?

MERLIN
Never better.

GAIUS
It's great to have you back.

[Merlin looks confused.]

GAIUS
What do you remember?

MERLIN
About what?

[Merlin turns around.]

GAIUS
I take it that means nothing.

[Gaius spots the Fomorroh in Merlin's neck.]

MERLIN
I got a feeling today is going to be a good day.

[Gaius stares at Merlin as he leaves.]

--
[26:25, INT. KING'S PALACE, ARTHUR'S CHAMBERS - DAY]

KING ARTHUR
My father prepared me well for being king, but he told me nothing of the loneliness of the job.

[Merlin pours Arthur's bath water.]

KING ARTHUR
What it's like to have all eyes on you, waiting for you to provide the answer.

[Merlin pulls out a bottle of salts.]

KING ARTHUR
In all the years I watched him, he never wavered in his certainty.

[Merlin uncorks the bottle and pours the salts in the water.]

KING ARTHUR
He was strong, he was sure. And I'm not in that place yet.

[The water foams and bubbles.]

--
[26:47, INT. KING'S PALACE, CORRIDOR - DAY]
[Gwen and Gaius hurry towards Arthur's chambers.]

KING ARTHUR
I value the guidance of others. Maybe I've been foolish to do so.

[Merlin places a sword in the bath water. He pulls it out and it's deformed. Those weren't bath salts.]

KING ARTHUR
Everyone has their own agenda.

[Gwen enters with Gaius and sees Merlin with the deformed sword.]

KING ARTHUR
It feels like I can trust no one anymore.

[Gwen rushes forward and knocks Merlin out with the same pitcher. Merlin falls back into Gaius's arms and Gaius hides him behind the column. Just then, Arthur chooses to step out from behind the screen completely undressed.]

KING ARTHUR
Is that how you see it, Merlin? Guinevere!

[Arthur covers himself.]

GWEN
Arthur!

[Gwen tries to pretend there's nothing awry, then realises he's naked and averts her eyes. He grabs a pillow from his bed and covers himself more effectively. Arthur tries to act dignified.]

KING ARTHUR
Gaius.

[Gwen and Gaius just stand there, trying to think of a way out of this.]

KING ARTHUR
You're not Merlin.

GWEN
No. There was a problem with the bath water.

KING ARTHUR
Really?

GWEN
Yes. It's cold. Very cold.

[Arthur steps forward to look at it.]

GWEN (quickly)
Merlin's gone to remedy it. I don't think you can have a bath today!

[Arthur looks up sharply. Gwen tries to cover her panic with an awkward smile. Arthur steps back.]

KING ARTHUR
Right... Good job I'm not very dirty, then.

GWEN (nervous laughter)
It's a good job indeed!

[Gaius chuckles with her, trying to hide and support Merlin behind the column. Arthur nods awkwardly, waiting for them to leave. They don't. He side steps awkwardly behind his dressing screen.]

--
[28:06, INT. KING'S PALACE, PHYSICIAN'S CHAMBERS - DAY]
[Merlin lies face down on a table while Gaius examines the revived Fomorroh.]

GWEN
So, let me get this straight. If you kill one, another grows in its place.

GAIUS
I've heard such stories in the past, but never thought they were true.

[Gaius dabs Merlin's neck with the paralyser concoction.]

GAIUS
That will silence it for a while.

[Gaius opens a smoking canister and holds it under Merlin's nose. He jerks awake, coughing.]

MERLIN
What is that? Arthur's socks?

[Gwen smiles a little and Merlin takes in his situation.]

MERLIN
What are you trying to do to me?

GAIUS
I'm trying to stop you from killing the king.

MERLIN
Heh. Ooh.

[Merlin staggers as he feels something.]

--
[28:43, INT. KING'S PALACE, PHYSICIAN'S CHAMBERS - DAY]
[Merlin stuffs his face with berries.]

GAIUS
So, you don't remember anything?

MERLIN
I remember Morgana conjuring the snake, but...nothing more. No.

[Merlin flips through a book.]

GAIUS
Lucky for us you're such a bad assassin.

MERLIN
Well, all is well now. I feel fine.

GAIUS
For now the serpent is dormant and when it wakes, your mind will be Morgana's once more and nothing will stop you from killing Arthur.

MERLIN
But how do we get rid of it, if it keeps growing back?

GAIUS
There's only one way, I'm afraid. You have to kill the mother beast.

MERLIN
The creature that lives in Morgana's hut?

[Gaius nods.]

MERLIN
Great. How long have I got? How long before this thing wakes up?

GAIUS
A day, no more. And I wouldn't face her alone.

MERLIN
Don't worry, I won't be there at all. Well, not exactly.

[Merlin picks up a potion bottle from another table.]

MERLIN
She won't recognise me if I'm eighty-years-old.

[Merlin hurries off.]

GAIUS
Well, what should I say if Arthur asks for you?

MERLIN
Er, tell him I'm anywhere.

[Merlin closes the door, then pops his head back in.]

MERLIN
Anywhere but the tavern.

--
[29:45, EXT. FOREST - DAY]
[Merlin rides through the woods and dismounts. He ties his horse to a tree. And ducks behind a tree to turn into Old Merlin.]

OLD MERLIN
Ah.

[Old Merlin walks back to the horse and tries to mount. He struggles, but it's too much for him. Elyan, Leon, Gwaine, and Percival saunter up to him and Old Merlin turns around.]

OLD MERLIN
Ah. Gentlemen. What a pleasant surprise.

SIR LEON
I wish we could say the same thing. Move away from the horse. Please.

OLD MERLIN
What lovely manners. I do admire a man who says "please".

SIR LEON
Now.

[Leon draws his sword and the others follow suit. Old Merlin moves away from the horse and they surround him. Old Merlin regards Percival.]

OLD MERLIN
Have you got bigger?

SIR PERCIVAL
You'll be getting shorter if I have my way.

OLD MERLIN
Nice. I like it.

[Old Merlin spins around.]

OLD MERLIN
Leon, really. There must be something in the Knight's Code about how to treat an old man.

SIR LEON
You're not just any old man, though, are you?

SIR GWAINE
You escaped the flames once, you won't escape again.

MERLIN
Sir! And you are not what you seem.

[Gwaine draws his sword.]

SIR GWAINE
What is he talking about? I'm a good mind to run you through right now.

[Leon puts out a hand.]

SIR LEON
I think Arthur would prefer to see him alive.

OLD MERLIN
Oh--oh-oh. No, really, Arthur doesn't not want to see me, believe me. In fact, if Arthur does see me, he will be in grave danger.

[Elyan is the last to draw his sword.]

SIR ELYAN
Are you threatening the life of our king?

[Percival pokes Old Merlin in the back with his sword. He pokes him again.]

OLD MERLIN
Percival! That is a sword, it does hurt. Yes, I am afraid to say, if you don't let me go, then there is every chance that I will KILL YOUR KING!

SIR GWAINE
Say that again!

OLD MERLIN
Why? Have you got ale in your ears?

[Gwaine yells and goes for the attack, but Old Merlin holds up a hand and stops him dead in his tracks, knocking him out. Percival tries next, but Old Merlin breaks his sword in half and magically shoves Percival and Leon into each other, then throws them on top of Elyan.]

OLD MERLIN
Ha! Thank you, gentlemen.

[Merlin uses them as a set of stairs.]

OLD MERLIN
So considerate to help an old man.

[Old Merlin cackles as he climbs onto his horse and rides off.]

--
[32:23, INT. MORGANA'S HOVEL - DAY]

MORGANA
I trust you bring me news of my brother's untimely death?

AGRAVAINE
I wish it were so, my lady, but I do bring information of an equally enticing nature. I have planted the seed of suspicion in our young king's mind. I've struck a blow at the very heart of old Camelot.

MORGANA
Go on.

AGRAVAINE
Arthur grew unsure of my motives, but I've turned the situation to our advantage.

MORGANA
How so?

AGRAVAINE
I've used it to implicate an old friend of yours. Gaius.

[Morgana smiles.]

AGRAVAINE
I think there are some interesting times ahead for our physician.

[Agravaine goes to pour himself a drink.]

MORGANA
You have done well. But it's hardly information of an enticing kind, is it?

[Agravaine pauses.]

MORGANA
Is Gaius dead?

AGRAVAINE
No.

MORGANA
I Gaius mortally wounded? Does Gaius have so much as a sore head?

AGRAVAINE
No, my lady.

MORGANA
So, my lord...you can do better. And you will do better.

[Agravaine is surprised by Morgana's reaction.]

--
[33:38, EXT. MORGANA'S HOVEL - DAY]
[Old Merlin crawls to the edge of the ridge overlooking Morgana's hovel. He sees her exit with Agravaine. Agravaine heads back to Camelot, but she walks off in the opposite direction.]

--
[34:00, INT. MORGANA'S HOVEL - DAY]
[Old Merlin enters Morgana's hut and looks through her things. Morgana walks in with some firewood. She looks up and sees Emrys. He snarls and she drops the firewood and backs out quickly, terrified. He's surprised, thinks it over, and then shrugs it off and continues searching. Morgana creeps back in slowly, shaking with fear.]

MORGANA
You're not real.

OLD MERLIN
Whatever you say!

[She jerks at his barked out reply. He continues searching. She continues slowly forward and pulls out a dagger. He finds the Fomorroh.]

MORGANA
You're just my imagination.

OLD MERLIN
That's right. I'm not really here. Just pretend that I'm not really here and I'll just get this and go.

[Merlin grabs the jar with the Fomorroh and Morgana moves forward to strike him. Before she goes two steps, his eyes glow and he tosses her backwards into a shelf, knocking it over.]

--
[35:39, EXT. MORGANA'S HOVEL - DAY]
[Old Merlin hurries off will the Fomorroh jar, but Morgana pursues him. She raises her hand.]

MORGANA
Ablinn ðu, forlæte ðu!

[Old Merlin is knocked off his feet and the jar goes flying. Morgana smiles in relief of her success. She hurries forward and pulls out her dagger confidently as he lays there.]

MORGANA
So, Emrys, it seems you'll not be my doom after all.

[She raises the dagger to strike.]

OLD MERLIN
Forþ fleoge!

[Morgana is thrown backwards. She loses her dagger. They both lie there for a moment, fighting back the pain. Merlin struggles to stand and walks over to her. He raises a hand to curse her.]

MORGANA
If I'm to die by your hand, you can at least tell me who you are. Did Arthur send you?

[Merlin regards her.]

MORGANA
But you're no friend of his. Magic has no place in Camelot. It never will. Not until I take the throne.

[Merlin's scowl softens.]

MORGANA
Please spare me. I only want what is rightfully mine.

[Morgana's lost him.]

MORGANA
Perhaps it could still be so.

[Morgana flicks her hand and the dagger shoots from behind Old Merlin. He dodges it, but Morgana sits up and her eyes glow and she throws him with a turn of her head. He gasps in pain. She fetches the Fomorroh jar and begins to walk off.]

OLD MERLIN
Ic her aciege anne windræs!

[Old Merlin's spell begins a whirlwind.]

OLD MERLIN
Færblæd wawe! Windræs ungetermed - ge hiere!

[Morgana turns and sees what he's doing. She tries to raise a hand to stop it.]

OLD MERLIN
Ic ðe bebiede mid ealle strangnesse ðæt ðu geblæwest ond sierest strange! Ge spurne þeos hægtesse!

[Now standing, hand raised, Old Merlin overpowers Morgana and forces the whirlwind towards her. She is thrown through the air and lands unconscious. Old Merlin collapses from the effort.]

--
[38:12, EXT. FOREST - NIGHT]
[Old Merlin sits on a log and lights a fire with a flick of his hand. He removes the lid from the Fomorroh jar and quickly tosses it into the fire.]

OLD MERLIN
Ontende þisne wyrm þæt he licgeþ unastyred a butan ende!

[The Fomorroh squeals and Merlin suddenly jerks as he feels it die in his neck. He sighs in relief.]

--
[38:54, INT. KING'S PALACE, PHYSICIAN'S CHAMBERS - DAY]

GAIUS
This is becoming something of a habit.

MERLIN (chuckles)
I hope not.

[Gaius extracts the dead Fomorroh.]

GAIUS
Don't worry. It cannot grow back again.

[Merlin's feels the back of his neck painfully. Gwen enters happily.]

GWEN
Merlin.

[Merlin smiles.]

GWEN
You're back.

[She laughs in relief.]

GWEN
Dare I look?

MERLIN
Oh, it's-- don't worry, it's completely gone. I've no desire to kill Arthur.

GWEN
That's great news. Although, I'm afraid right now he does want to kill you.

[Merlin's smile turns into confusion.]

--
[39:27, INT. KING'S PALACE, ARTHUR'S CHAMBERS - DAY]
[Arthur beats his fingers on his arm rest.]

KING ARTHUR
Two whole days in the tavern.

[Merlin balks.]

MERLIN
I'm not quite sure it was that long.

KING ARTHUR
Give me one good reason why I shouldn't get rid of you on the spot.

MERLIN
Because you'd have no one to polish your armour, make you breakfast, organise your clothes.

KING ARTHUR
Ah, well, that's where you're wrong. George!

[George enters primly.]

KING ARTHUR
Merlin, meet George. George is, perhaps, the most efficient servant I've ever seen. He'll be spending the rest of the week teaching you.

MERLIN
Teaching me?

KING ARTHUR
If you wish to remain in my service.

GEORGE
We will start in the armoury. Lesson one is my favourite. Polishing.

[Arthur tries not to laugh.]

MERLIN
Yes, that's my favourite, too.

[George nods, then jerks his head to indicate Merlin should follow him. Merlin stops at the door.]

MERLIN
Tell me something...

[Arthur puts on a mock-serious expression as Merlin walks back.]

MERLIN
If he's so good, why don't you just give him the job?

[Arthur drops the act.]

KING ARTHUR
He's seriously boring. I've never met anyone so dull. The man makes jokes about brass.

[Arthur pats Merlin on the arm.]

KING ARTHUR
Anyway, off you go. It'll be fun.

[Arthur is enjoying this. Merlin gives a fake smile and nods and walks to the door. He pauses to look back at Arthur who gives him a smug smile and nod and Merlin exits with a grin.]

--
[40:52, EXT. FOREST]
[Agravaine rides hurriedly to Morgana's hovel.]

--
[41:03, INT. MORGANA'S HOVEL - DAY]
[Morgana's home is trashed when he arrives.]

AGRAVAINE
Morgan-- ?

[He stops at the sight of it, then walks in slowly, taking in the wreck.]

AGRAVAINE [worried]
Morgana!?

--

[41:19, EXT. MORGANA'S HOVEL - DAY]
[Agravaine searches the woods nearby. He spots Morgana lying on the ground and rushes to her. He turns her face toward him gently, clearly distraught. He carries her through the woods.]


Source

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