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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 boy. His name: Merlin.

--

[0:12, NIMUEH'S CAVE]

NIMUEH [chants a spell]

[Nimueh drops a flower petal into the water. She watches Merlin in the water. She pulls out the petal, now transparent, and puts it in a silver goblet]

NIMUEH
Merlin.

The poisoned chalice

Nimueh enchants the chalice


OPENING CREDITS

--

[0:48, THRONE ROOM]

[Bayard and his men arrive in Camelot, they meet Uther and his men in the Throne Room]

UTHER
Camelot welcomes you, Lord Bayard of Mercia. The treaty we sign today marks an end to war and a beginning to a new friendship between our people.

[Uther and Bayard grasp arms. Both parties applaud while Nimueh stares at Merlin]

--

[2:10, UPPER CORRIDOR]

[Merlin passes Gaius in the Upper Corridor while carrying a heavy bag]

MERLIN
Why do I always get landed with the donkey work?

GAIUS
You're a servant, Merlin. It's what you do.

MERLIN
My arms will be a foot longer by the time I get this lot inside.

GAIUS
It's character building. As the old proverb says, hard work breeds... a harder soul.

MERLIN [knowingly]
There is no way that's a proverb. You just made that up.

GAIUS
No. I didn't.

[Nimueh fakes a fall right in front of Merlin]

NIMUEH
Sorry.

MERLIN
It's alright.

NIMUEH
Excuse me.

MERLIN
Let me give you a hand with that.

[Merlin crouches down and catches Nimueh's eye. They stand up]

MERLIN
Hi. I'm Merlin.

[He shakes her hand]

NIMUEH
Cara. You're Arthur's servant. That must be such an honour.

MERLIN
Oh, yeah. It is. Well, you know, someone's got to keep the place running.

NIMUEH
Thank you, Merlin.

MERLIN
Hmm?

[He looks down at the pillow he picked up for her]

MERLIN
Oh, right. Yeah. Er, no problem.

NIMUEH
It was nice meeting you.

[Merlin watches her leave]

GAIUS
Shouldn't you be busy running the place?

[Gaius laughs]

--

[3:08, BAYARD'S GUEST CHAMBERS​]

NIMUEH
Alysan duru ronne.

[The door opens. Nimueh enters and opens a box with two silver goblets inside. She replaces one of them with an identical one that she enchanted at the beginning]

--

[4:03, ARTHUR'S CHAMBERS]
[Merlin sets down Arthur's clothes for the feast and reels backwards, covering his face]

MERLIN
When's the last time these were cleaned?

ARTHUR
Last year some time. Before the Feast of Beltane.

MERLIN
Did it end in a food fight?

ARTHUR
Don't all feasts?

MERLIN
I wouldn't know. The airs and graces of the court are a mystery to me.

ARTHUR
Not after tonight they won't be.

MERLIN
I'm going to be at the banquet?

ARTHUR
Not quite. You'll be there to make sure my cup doesn't run dry. If I have to sit through Bayard's boring speeches, I don't see why you should get out of it. Be sure to polish the buttons. Do you want to see what you'll be wearing tonight?

MERLIN
Won't this do?

ARTHUR
No. Tonight you'll be wearing the official ceremonial robes of the servants of Camelot.

[Arthur holds them up for Merlin to see]

MERLIN
You can't be serious.

--

[5:12, HALL OF CEREMONIES]

[Bayard signs the treaty in the Hall of Ceremonies. Gwen chuckles at Merlin's feathered hat]

GUINEVERE
Nice hat.

MERLIN
Thanks.

[Merlin catches Nimueh's eye and takes off the hat. Gwen notices his gaze]

GUINEVERE
She's pretty isn't she? For a handmaiden, I mean.

MERLIN
She's pretty for a princess, let alone a handmaiden.

GUINEVERE
Mmm.

[Uther finishes signing the treaty and grasps arms with Bayard. crowd applauds and Gwen leaves Merlin]

BAYARD
People of Camelot, for a great many years we have been mortal enemies, and the blood of our men stains the ground from the walls of Camelot to the gates of Mercia. And though we remember those who have died, we must not allow any more to join them.

[a serving girl brings in the box with the goblets]

BAYARD
As a symbol of our goodwill, and of our newfound friendship, I present these ceremonial goblets to you, Uther, and to your son, Arthur, in the hope that our friendship may last.

[Nimueh approaches Merlin with fake anxiety in her voice]

NIMUEH
Merlin, I need to speak to you.

BAYARD
The wounds we received in battle...

MERLIN
What is it?

NIMUEH
Not here, please. I don't know who else to tell.

[Merlin leaves with Nimueh. Gaius notices]

BAYARD
Tonight we toast a new beginning for our peoples. We look towards a future free from the toils of war.

--

[6:47, CORRIDOR]

NIMUEH
It wasn't until I saw him give the goblet to Arthur that I realised...

MERLIN
Whoa, slow down. Start from the beginning.

NIMUEH
Two days ago, I was bringing Bayard his evening meal. We're supposed to knock. He didn't expect me to walk in...

MERLIN
So what are you trying to say?

NIMUEH
If he knows I said anything, he will kill me.

MERLIN
I would not let that happen to you, I promise. Please tell me what you saw.

NIMUEH
Bayard is no friend of Camelot. He craves the kingdom for himself.

MERLIN
Cara...Tell me. What has Bayard done with the goblet?

NIMUEH
He believes that if he kills Arthur, Uther's spirit will be broken and Camelot will fall.

MERLIN
What has he done with the goblet?

NIMUEH
I saw him putting something in it.

MERLIN
What?

NIMUEH
I shouldn't! He'll kill me!

MERLIN
Please, tell me! Was it poison?

[Nimueh nods. Merlin runs back to the Hall of Ceremonies and Nimueh smirks]

--

[7:34, HALL OF CEREMONIES]

BAYARD
And may the differences from our past remain there. To your health, Uther.

[Every one stands to toast]

BAYARD
Arthur.

[Arthur starts to drink]

BAYARD
The Lady Morgana.

[Morgana nods. Arthur waits]

BAYARD
The people of Camelot.

[Arthur starts to drink]

UTHER
And to fallen warriors on both sides.

[Everyone starts to drink]

MERLIN
Stop!

[Merlin runs in]

MERLIN
It's poisoned! Don't drink it!

[Merlin runs up to Arthur and takes his goblet]

UTHER
What?

ARTHUR
Merlin, what are you doing?

MERLIN
Bayard laced Arthur's goblet with poison.

BAYARD
This is an outrage!

[Bayard and his men draw their swords, so do the knights of Camelot]

UTHER
Order your men to put down their swords.

[Camelot guards rush in]

UTHER
You are outnumbered.

BAYARD
I will not allow this insult to go unchallenged!

UTHER
On what grounds do you base this accusation?

ARTHUR
I'll handle this.

[Arthur skirts around the table]

ARTHUR
Merlin, you idiot. Have we been at the slow gin again?

[Arthur grabs Merlin and takes the goblet]

UTHER
Unless you want to be strung up, you will tell me why you think why you think it's poisoned now.

MERLIN
He was seen lacing it.

UTHER
By whom?

MERLIN
I can't say.

BAYARD
I won't listen to this anymore.

UTHER
Pass me the goblet.

[Arthur hands it to him]

UTHER
If you're telling the truth...

BAYARD
I am.

UTHER
Then you have nothing to fear, do you?

[Bayard sheathes his sword and reaches for the goblet]

UTHER
No. If this does prove to be poisoned, I want the pleasure of killing you myself.

BAYARD [snort]

[Uther holds the goblet up to Merlin]

UTHER
He'll drink it.

ARTHUR
But if it is poisoned, he'll die!

UTHER
Then we'll know he was telling the truth.

BAYARD
And what if he lives?

UTHER
Then you have my apologies, and you can do with him as you will.

GAIUS
Uther, please! He's just a boy! He doesn't know what he's saying!

UTHER
Then you should've schooled him better.

ARTHUR
Merlin, apologise. This is a mistake. I'll drink it.

MERLIN
No, no, no, no, no. It's, it's alright.

[Merlin toasts to Bayard and Arthur, then drinks as Nimueh watches with glee. Gwen takes a few steps forward in her anxiety]

MERLIN
It's fine.

UTHER
He's all yours.

[Gwen sighs in relief. Merlin chokes and falls to the floor unconscious]

UTHER
It's poisoned. Guards seize him!

[Arthur crouches over Merlin. Nimueh leaves. Gaius and Gwen crouch over Merlin]

GAIUS
Merlin. Can you hear me? We have to get him back to my chambers. Bring the goblet. I need to identify the poison.

[Arthur picks up Merlin and Gwen grabs the goblet]

--

[11:09, GAIUS' CHAMBERS]

GAIUS
Lay him on the bed quickly; he's struggling to breathe. Gwen, fetch me some water and a towel.

ARTHUR
Is he going to be alright?

GAIUS
He's burning up.

GUINEVERE
You can cure him, can't you Gaius?

GAIUS
I won't know until I can identify the poison. Pass me the goblet.

[Gwen hands it to him]

GAIUS
Ah. There's something stuck on the inside.

ARTHUR
What is it?

GAIUS
It looks like a flower petal of some kind.

GUINEVERE
His brow's on fire.

GAIUS
Keep him cool; it'll help control his fever.

[Gwen tends to Merlin while Gaius pulls out a book]

GAIUS
Ah. The petal comes from the Mortaeus flower. It says here that someone poisoned by the Mortaeus can only be saved by a potion made from the leaf of the very same flower. It can only be found in the caves deep beneath the Forest of Balor. The flower grows on the roots of the Mortaeus tree.

ARTHUR
That's not particularly friendly.

GAIUS
A Cockatrice. It guards the forest. Its venom is potent. A single drop would mean certain death. Few who have crossed the Mountains of Isgaard in search of the Mortaeus flower have made it back alive.

ARTHUR
Sounds like fun.

GAIUS
Arthur, it's too dangerous.

ARTHUR
If I don't get the antidote, what happens to Merlin?

GAIUS
The Mortaeus induces a slow and painful death. He may hold out for four, maybe five days, but not for much longer. Eventually he will die.

[13:08, Nimueh rides out of Camelot]

--

[13:21, MORGANA'S CHAMBERS]


GUINEVERE
My Lady, I am so sorry I haven't been here to attend to you.

MORGANA
Don't worry, I'm alright. How's Merlin?

GUINEVERE
If Arthur comes back with the antidote in time, he'll be fine.

MORGANA
Then he'll be fine.

[Gwen sighs]

MORGANA
You should be with him. I'll manage. I know what he means to you. Go.

GUINEVERE
Thank you.

--

[13:44, RED RIBBON CORRIDOR]

[Arthur walks with Uther down the Red Ribbon Corridor.]

UTHER
What's the point of having people to taste for you if you're going to get yourself killed anyway?

ARTHUR
I won't fail, no matter what you think.

UTHER
Arthur, you are my only son and heir. I can't risk losing you for the sake of some serving boy.

ARTHUR
Oh, because his life's worthless?

UTHER
No, because it's worth less than yours.

ARTHUR
I can save him. Let me take some men.

UTHER
No.

ARTHUR
We'll find the antidote and bring it back.

UTHER
No.

ARTHUR
Why not?!

UTHER
Because one day I will be dead and Camelot will need a king. I'm not going to let you jeopardise the future of this kingdom over some fool's errand.

ARTHUR
It's not a fool's errand. Gaius says that if we can get the antidote...

UTHER
Oh, Gaius says? That's exactly what makes it so.

ARTHUR
Please, Father. He saved my life. I can't stand by and watch him die.

UTHER
Then don't look. This boy won't be the last to die on your behalf. You're going to be King. It's something you'll have to get used to.

ARTHUR
I can't accept that.

UTHER
You're not going.

ARTHUR
You can't stop me.

UTHER
Damn it, Arthur, that's an end to it! You're not leaving this castle tonight.

--

[14:51, ARTHUR'S CHAMBERS]

MORGANA
Say what you like about the food, but you can't beat our feast for entertainment.

ARTHUR
Morgana, I'm sorry, I should have made sure you were alright.

MORGANA
Disappointed actually. I was looking forward to clumping a couple around the head with a ladle.

ARTHUR
I'm sure the guards could have handled Bayard and his men.

MORGANA
Yeah, but why let the boys have all the fun?

ARTHUR
Morgana, you shouldn't get involved. It's dangerous.

MORGANA
Spare me the lecture, I've already had it from Uther.

ARTHUR
If it's any consolation, you weren't the only one.

MORGANA
Not that I listen to him. Sometimes you've got to do what you think is right, and damn the consequences.

ARTHUR
You think I should go?

MORGANA
It doesn't matter what I think.

ARTHUR
If I don't make it back, who will be the next king of Camelot? There's more than just my life at stake.

MORGANA
And what kind of king would Camelot want? One that would risk his life to save that of a lowly servant? [Morgana draws Arthur's sword] Or one who does what his father tells him to? [Morgana presents Arthur with the sword]

--

[15:15, EXT. OUTSIDE - NIGHT]

[Arthur rides across the drawbridge]

GUARDS
Halt!

[Arthur rides past the guards out of Camelot. Nimueh watches from her stone basin]

--

[15:35, PHYSICIAN'S CHAMBERS]

GUINEVERE
He's getting hotter.

MERLIN [muttering]
Him. Liffrea, wuldres wealdend, woroldare forgeaf.

GUINEVERE
What language is that?

GAIUS
None. The fever's taken hold. None of those words are his own. His pulse is weaker.

[Gaius finds a large circular rash on Merlin's arm]

GUINEVERE
What is it?

GAIUS
That can't be right. The rash is not supposed to appear until the final stage.

GUINEVERE
What does that mean?

[Gaius checks his book with a magnifying glass]

GAIUS
It says here that "once a rash appears, death will follow within two days."

GUINEVERE
You said he had four days.

GAIUS
Something's increased the flower's potency. It warns that "the effect of the Mortaeus will be more rapid if an enchantment is used during the flower's preparation."

GUINEVERE
An enchantment? But Bayard's no sorcerer.

GAIUS
No he isn't.

GUINEVERE
Then who did this?

GAIUS
It can't have been. She wouldn't dare come here. Unless...

GUINEVERE
Unless what?

GAIUS
What happened to that girl?

GUINEVERE
Which girl?

GAIUS
Just before Merlin burst into the hall one of Bayard's serving girls took him outside.

GUINEVERE
She had dark hair. Very beautiful.

GAIUS
Find her. Quickly.

MERLIN [muttering]
Arthur... swa...

--

[17:07, DUNGEONS]

[Gwen checks the cells for Cara/Nimueh]

--

[17:24, MORGANA'S CHAMBERS]

UTHER
I expressly ordered Arthur not to go!

MORGANA
I'd say it worked like a charm, too.

UTHER
Not another word!

MORGANA
My lips are sealed.

UTHER
I should've put him under lock and key.

MORGANA
You can't chain him up every time he disagrees with you.

UTHER
Just you watch me! I will not be disobeyed! Especially by my own son!

MORGANA
No. Of course you won't.

[Morgana sits down at her desk to write. Uther approaches her]

UTHER
You knew about this, didn't you? Morgana...don't lie to me.

MORGANA
Arthur's old enough to make decisions for himself.

UTHER
He's just a boy.

MORGANA
Have you seen your son recently? You have to let him make his own mind up.

UTHER
Even if it means letting him go to his death?

--

[18:10, EXT. OUTSIDE - DAY]

[Arthur rides on his horse through the countryside, soon he approaches a large forest.]



--
[18:34, PHYSICIAN'S CHAMBERS]

GAIUS
Let me guess, she wasn't there.

GUINEVERE
No one has seen her since the banquet. Who is she?

GAIUS
Not who she claims to be.

GUINEVERE
But you know, don't you?

GAIUS
Cara. Though, that's not her name. Not her real name, anyway.

GUINEVERE
Then who is she?

GAIUS
A powerful sorceress.

GUINEVERE
Well, we should tell Uther. Maybe he could send riders out after her.

GAIUS
No, she'll be long gone. It's impossible to know where, though. Oh, no.

GUINEVERE
What?

GAIUS
She knows the only place an antidote can be found is the Forest of Balor. Arthur could be walking into a trap.

MERLIN
Arthur. Arthur.


--
[19:40, FOREST OF BALOR]

[Arthur leads his horse through the forest]



ARTHUR
Hello? Are you alright?

[The Cockatrice roars behind him]

ARTHUR
Stay back.

[Nimueh smiles as Arthur faces the beast. The Cockatrice lunges, Arthur rolls under it as it jumps, then throws his sword, killing it. Nimueh grimaces. Arthur looks at her and she gets up and backs away in pretend fear.]

ARTHUR
It's alright. I'm not going to hurt you. Who did that to you?

[Arthur points to her bruises]

NIMUEH
My master. I ran away from him, but then I got lost. Please don't leave me.

ARTHUR
I won't. I'm not going to.

NIMUEH
You can take me away from here?

ARTHUR
Not yet. There's something I have to do first.

[Arthur looks at the cave mouth]

NIMUEH
Why have you come to the caves?

ARTHUR
I'm looking for something. It can only be found here.

NIMUEH
What is it? I know this place; I could help you.

ARTHUR
It's a type of flower that only grows inside the cave. It's very rare.

NIMUEH
The Mortaeus flower? I know where they are. I'll show you.

[Arthur and Nimueh enter the cave with torches]


--
[22:57, PHYSICIAN'S CHAMBERS]

MERLIN
Arthur, it...it's a trap. It's a trap.

GUINEVERE
His fever's getting worse, isn't it?

GAIUS
The poison's setting in.

MERLIN
eft gewunigen wilgesiþas, þonne wig cume.

GAIUS
Shh. Could you fetch me some more Wolfbane?

GUINEVERE
Yes, of course.

GAIUS
Merlin, you must fight it.


--
[22:36, THE CAVES OF BALOR]

NIMUEH
There they are.

[The flowers are on the across a large gap with a narrow ledge and long drop. Arthur looks down]

ARTHUR
Keep back from the edge. Don't worry. We'll be out of here soon.

NIMUEH
Eorthe, lyft, fyr, waeter, hiersumie me.

[The cave begins to shake]

NIMUEH
Eorthe ac stanas hiersumie me. Ic can stanas tobrytan...

ARTHUR
What are you doing?!

NIMUEH

...hiersumie me.

[Arthur drops his torch as the rock falls out beneath him. He jumps for the opposite ledge and catches it with his hand]

NIMUEH

I expected so much more.

ARTHUR
Who are you?!

NIMUEH
The last face you'll ever see.

[A giant spider shows up]

NIMUEH
It seems we have a visitor.

[Arthur edges away from the spider, draws his sword and kills the spider while dangling from the ledge]

NIMUEH
Very good. But he won't be the last. I'll let his friends finish you off, Arthur Pendragon. It's not your destiny to die at my hand.

[She leaves with the torch, leaving Arthur dangling from the ledge in the dark]

ARTHUR
Who are you?!


--
[25:55, PHYSICIAN'S CHAMBERS]

MERLIN
Arthur. It's too dark. Too dark. Fromum feohgiftum on fæder bearme. Fromum feohgiftum.

[Gaius sees something glowing under the bed sheets]

GAIUS
Merlin.

[Gaius folds the bed sheet. Merlin holds a glowing ball of light in his hand]

GAIUS
What are you doing ?


--
[26:21, THE CAVES OF BALOR]

[Arthur sees the light in the cave]

ARTHUR
Come on, then! What are you waiting for?! Finish me off!

[The light floats above Arthur and he pulls himself onto the ledge. The light moves higher, but Arthur spots the Mortaeus flower on the wall]

MERLIN
Leave them, Arthur.

[Spiders screech and crawl toward Arthur]

MERLIN
Go. Save yourself. Follow the light.

[Arthur climbs to the flower and grabs it and puts it in a pouch on his belt. Spiders keep coming. Arthur races to the top]

MERLIN
Faster. Go faster. Follow the light! Move. Climb.

[Arthur makes it to the top and the light disappears from Merlin's hand]



--
[29:35, EXT. OUTSIDE CAMELOT - DAY]

[Guards spot Arthur from the battlements]

GREGORY
Inform the King! Arthur has returned to Camelot!

[Arthur rides up to the drawbridge gate. Guards block his way]

ARTHUR
What are you doing? Let me pass.

GREGORY
I'm sorry, Sire. You're under arrest, by order of the King.


--
[30:00, DUNGEONS]

UTHER
You disobeyed me.

ARTHUR
Of course I did, a man's life was at stake. Do not let Merlin die because of something I did.

UTHER
Why do you care so much? The boy is just a servant.

ARTHUR
He knew the danger he was putting himself in, and he knew what would happen if he drank from that goblet, but he did it anyway. He saved my life. There's more. There was a woman at the mountain. She knew I was there for the flower. I don't think it was Bayard who tried to poison me.

UTHER
Of course it was.

[Arthur pulls out the flower]

ARTHUR
Gaius knows what to do with it.

[Uther takes the flower]

ARTHUR
Put me in the stocks for a week, a month even, I don't care. Just make sure it gets to him. I'm begging you.

[Uther crushes the flower in his fist]

ARTHUR
NO!

UTHER
You have to learn there's a right and a wrong way of doing things. I'll see you're let out in a week. Then you can find yourself another servant.

[Uther drops the flower just outside Arthur's cell door. The guards lock the door and Arthur tries to get the flower just beyond his reach]


--
[31:21, PHYSICIAN'S CHAMBER]

GAIUS
He hasn't got much longer. Has Arthur got the flower?

GUINEVERE
I don't know. Uther won't allow anyone to see him. Is there nothing we can do to help?

GAIUS
Only the leaf of the Mortaeus flower can save him.

GUINEVERE
And we have to find out if Arthur has it. I could sneak into the dungeon.

GAIUS
That would be very dangerous.

GUINEVERE
I've got to. Merlin will die if I don't.

[Merlin struggles to breathe]

GAIUS
Be careful.


--
[31:57, DUNGEONS]

[Gwen walks down the Wrought Iron Stairway with a plate of food and approaches a guard]

GUINEVERE
Food for the prisoner.

[Guard unlocks the door for her]

ARTHUR
Set it down over there.

[She puts it down on a small table and takes a step back. Arthur gets up and goes to the table]

ARTHUR
Thank you.

[Gwen turns to leave]

ARTHUR
Wait a minute.

[Arthur puts the plate back down and walks back to his seat on the floor]

ARTHUR
I couldn't possibly eat this, it's disgusting. The state it's in, I'm not sure it's fit for anyone.

[Gwen goes back to pick up the plate and smiles when she sees the flower on the plate. she leaves the cell]

DUNGEON GUARD
You. Wait!

[She stops and turns around as the guard approaches. He picks over the plate and grabs some bread]

DUNGEON GUARD
Waste not, want not, eh? We're not all as precious as our Royal Highness.

[Gwen turns to leave just as another serving girl comes down the steps with a plate and cup]

SERVING GIRL
Food for Prince Arthur.

DUNGEON GUARD
Stay where you are!

[Gwen drops the plate and dashes up the stairs]


--
[33:50, PHYSICIAN'S CHAMBERS]

GUINEVERE
How is he?

GAIUS
Have you got the Mortaeus?

GUINEVERE
Here.

GAIUS
His breathing's much worse. We have to hurry.

[Gwen sits down next to Merlin's sickbed as Gaius begins crushing the flower leaf]

GUINEVERE
Why have you stopped?

GAIUS
The poison was created using magic. We may need magic to make an antidote.

GUINEVERE
But we can't. It's forbidden. Even if we could.

GAIUS
I'll try and make it work without it. Oh, I need some fresh water.

[He hands her a bowl and she runs off. Gaius lifts the bowl he's holding]

GAIUS
Sythan...

[Gaius stops and looks around, nervous to be practicing magic again]

GAIUS
Sythan arrest wearth feasceaft funden. Denum æfter dome. Dreamleas gebad he gewinnes longsum.

[The potion sizzles and foams for a moment. Gwen runs back in and hands him the bowl of water before rushing back to Merlin's side]

GAIUS
Thank you.

[Gaius pours the potion into a small cup and goes to Merlin]

GAIUS
Hold his nose.

[Gwen pinches Merlin's nose as Gaius pours the potion into Merlin's mouth]

GAIUS
Swallow, Merlin. Swallow it.

GUINEVERE
He's stopped breathing. What's happening? Gaius?

[Gaius puts his head to Merlin's chest]

GAIUS
His heart has stopped.

GUINEVERE
He's dead?

GAIUS
He can't be. He can't be. It was his destiny.

[Gaius stands up]

GUINEVERE
It's my fault. If I'd have got here sooner. If I'd have been quicker.

[Gwen gets up and cries in Gaius's arms]

GAIUS
No, no. It was me. I should've looked after him better. It's my fault.

MERLIN
That's disgusting. You should be ashamed of yourself. You're old enough to be her grandfather.

GAIUS
Merlin. You're alive.

MERLIN
No. I'm the ghost come back to haunt you.

[Gwen grabs Merlin's face and kisses him]

GUINEVERE
Sorry, I'm just...I thought you were dead.

MERLIN
It's fine. It's more than fine. ...erm...what happened? The last thing I remember is drinking the wine.


--
[37:51, COUNCIL CHAMBER]

GAIUS
Sire, forgive the interruption, but may I speak with you?

UTHER
Not now.

GAIUS
But, Your Highness, it is important.

UTHER
Word of Bayard's arrest has got back to Mercia. We're about to be attacked.

GAIUS
I feel that what I have to tell you may have some bearing on your plans. Please, it will only take a moment.

[Uther steps aside with Gaius]

GAIUS
I know who tried to poison Arthur.

UTHER
So do I. He's locked in my dungeons.

GAIUS
It wasn't Bayard. The poison was magical. And I'd recognise the hand that made it anywhere: Nimueh.

UTHER
You must be mistaken.

GAIUS
I wish I was.

UTHER
It can't have been. We'd know her. That witch's face is not easily forgotten.

GAIUS
She's a powerful sorceress. She can enchant the eye that beholds her. We never knew it was her.

UTHER
Have you any proof?

GAIUS
The poison used against Merlin was made more potent by the use of magic.

UTHER
Are you saying that she conspired with Bayard to kill Arthur?

GAIUS
No, Bayard is innocent. Look at what's happening. This is what she's wanted all along. A war to bring strife and misery to Camelot.

UTHER
How long before Bayard's armies reach our walls?

SIR CADOR
A day. Maybe less. We should send cavalry out to meet them.

UTHER
Instruct your men not to leave Camelot until I give the word.

SIR CADOR
Sire.

[Knights bow and exit]

GAIUS
You are making the right decision, Sire. Do you think Arthur should be told the truth about Nimueh?


--
[39:31, BATTLEMENTS]

MORGANA
Okay. Let the bragging begin. How'd you manage it?

ARTHUR
I'm not sure. All I do know is I had help. Someone knew I was in trouble and sent a light to guide the way.

MORGANA
Who?

ARTHUR
I don't know. But whoever it was, I'm only here because of them.

MORGANA
I'm glad you're back.

[Morgana leaves]

UTHER
Arthur? The woman you met in the forest, what did she tell you?

ARTHUR
Not much. She was too busy trying to get me killed. It was strange, though.

UTHER
In what way?

ARTHUR
I was at her mercy. She could have finished me off, but she chose not to. She said it wasn't my destiny to die at her hand.

UTHER
You must've been scared.

ARTHUR
Had its moments.

UTHER
Those who practice magic know only evil. They despise and seek to destroy goodness wherever they find it. Which is why she wanted you dead. She is evil.

ARTHUR
Sounds as if you know her.

UTHER
I do. To know the heart of one sorcerer is to know them all. You did the right thing. Even though you were disobeying me. I'm proud of you, Arthur. Never forget that.


--
[41:50, PHYSICIAN'S CHAMBERS]

ARTHUR
Still alive, then?

MERLIN
Oh. Yeah, just about. I understand I have you to thank for that.

ARTHUR
Yeah, well, it was nothing. A half decent servant is hard to come by. I was only dropping by to make sure you're alright. I expect you to be back to work tomorrow.

MERLIN
Oh yeah, yeah of course, er, bright and early.

[Arthur turns to leave]

MERLIN
Arthur. Thank you.

ARTHUR
You too. Get some rest.

GAIUS
Arthur may give you a hard time, but at heart he's a man of honour. There aren't many who'd have risk what he did for a servant.

MERLIN
It all would've been for nothing if you didn't know how to make the antidote.

GAIUS
Eat your dinner.

MERLIN
I still don't understand why she went to all the trouble of framing Bayard. She could've just kept quiet and killed Arthur.

GAIUS
But destroying Arthur and Camelot wasn't all she was after. She knew you would be forced to drink that wine. It was you she wanted to kill. Seems someone else knows you're destined for great things, Merlin.

--

[43:18, NIMUEH'S CAVE]

[Nimueh watches Merlin in her stone basin, annoyed]

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