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The Toybox

people for the conservation of limited amounts of indignation


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i would like to live a life of leisure
children of dune - leto 1
seperis
Thanks for everyone yesterday who pointed out the low, low chances of me achieving non-existence via thyroid. Just, in my defense, happy Czech accent giving the news on an otherwise normal workday. Wasn't ready for that.

Okay, I know this is true, but I never knew it was true to me off fandom. The internet really does seem to make it much easier to be an extremist. This is brought to you by recent vaccination wank. I mean, granted, I am pro-vaccination like whoa, but that is from the intrinsic idea that I do not want to die. However, during discussion, I was interested to realize I also have a historical perspective on the subject, because I started writing a story involving maybe an outbreak of some, you know, disease, and you know what really sensitizes you to that sort of thing? Reading about lots and lots of plague victims being burned in town square. I really wanted to go get a shot after that. I mean, of alcohol. And be vaccinated for everything in the universe.

You know, this may be one of the more useless entries I've ever made.



In my defense, I'm going through semi-colon withdrawal and a wild parenthesis phrase. Th rest--well, there is no excuse.

*****

There's something personally humiliating about recognizing that the pristine state of one's room and the blinding shine of one's armor aren't actually a sign that Merlin's improved in either demeanor or skill. Feeling faintly wary, Arthur notices the disturbing cleanness of the stone floor, the line-straight edge of the rugs and braces himself before he looks at the precise folds of blankets on his bed.

No rat droppings. He doesn't wince at all.

It's like a *good* servant works here, which Merlin is not, and while Arthur tried his best to sleep his way through mathematics ("I am a prince. I have *servants* to build bridges if I want a bridge!" "Of course, Your Highness. Please examine your figures here; perhaps you did not mean for your bridge to collapse into the river?"), two plus two is not five and he doesn't need to remember how to calculate angle and force to know that Merlin's unhappy with him (an understatement, Arthur realizes, when he sees his socks are rolled into perfect spheres. He shudders).

Humiliating because knowing these sorts of things are beneath him (like bridges, but even more so), and he can ignore it all he likes (which he does), but he can still feel it, emanating from the neatly hung clothes sorted by color, shoes matched beneath like an accusation.

In a world like this one but with a proper manservant, this would be his due. This is not that world, more's the pity, and so the fact that his chainmail looks like it came fresh from the blacksmith does not herald a miraculous change in his servant's personality.

There's a sharp double-tap at the door like the death-knell from the church, and Arthur braces himself before he sprawls deliberately over the meticulously made bed and tries not to feel uncomfortable that the blankets are now wrinkled. "Come in."

Merlin comes in, dinner tray balanced on one wide-spread palm, and looks at Arthur with what he probably thinks is blank subservience but comes closer to extreme constipation. "Sire. I've brought your dinner."

Arthur marvels that Merlin can manage to make "sire" sound like "chamber pot". "Put it over there," Arthur says, deliberately pushing his heel into the bedcovers, not acknowledging the twist of guilt for the streak of mud he leaves behind.

The best defense, in Arthur's view, is an aggressive offense (why defend when one can attack? A mystery Arthur has yet to solve); getting up on both elbows, Arthur smiles. "You're late."

It takes time and observation of Merlin (which Arthur will fall on his own sword before he admits to) to see the quick bunch of muscles in his jaw.

"I was cleaning the chamber pots. Sire."

It's strange, Arthur thinks, fighting the urge to flinch (chamber pots are actually below Merlin's station, which Arthur thinks he should tell Merlin. Eventually); one day, one impossibly long state dinner, and one dagger, and you go from domestic peace (and attractively compliant chambermaids) to a war with intermittent battles that seems destined to stretch the rest of his life (and Merlin is neither attractively compliant nor a maid) or until he gets rid of Merlin (and he doesn't even pretend that's going to happen anytime soon). As Merlin starts to lay out the dishes, Arthur's eyes narrow on his hands. That handled chamber pots. "Did you bathe?"

Merlin puts down the goblet so carefully Arthur can almost see it fly through the air toward his head and manage to go nowhere near: aim is not Merlin's strong suit. Lifting his head, Merlin looks two inches to the left of his eyes. "Of course. Sire."


Wow, surfing friends friends actually paid off!

This snippet is completely awesome. I love it. ♥

You're right, Arthur does make everything better! Oh, boys! ♥

Retaliatory obedience is my favorite thing in the world.

Thank you!

(Yes, he does. He seriously, seriously does make everything better.)

Oooh, Arthur's in trooouble! Loved this. Merlin being all...competent at his job is a pretty terrifying prospect.

Malicious compliance is always fun. *nodnodnod*

Thank you!

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*happy wriggle*

Yay for Merlin snippetness!

*cackles happily at snippet* Beautiful.

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I twitch at the thought of it. All that malicious cleanness surrounding you.

Thanks!

Ohh, I can just about imagine Uther's horror if he learned of his son's severe abuse... *g*

Arthur's life is hard, yo.

Thanks!

ahaha omg, wow, Merlin punishing Arthur with GOOD SERVICE is amazing.

um, but where is the next scene, where Arthur retaliates with a blowjob? it's missing even when I refresh the page!

*runs away fast*

..I knew I forgot something!

This made me smile, in a sort of evil smirky sort of way ;/. Arthur is in soooo much trouble. Thank you.

His bed smells of fresh lavender and it's totally freaking him out. *g*

Thanks!

Yeah. Massive vaccine wank on the Private Practice message boards, because there was an episode in which a child not vaccinated for measles, who travels and theoretically catches it overseas, dies.

Granted, the show's medical information makes me wince like whoa. I don't think they actually have anyone advising them.

*winces* Yeah, I heard about that. And that does freak me out.

I've actually noticed I tend to be a bit more melodramatic on the internet as well. It's not that I'm not a drama queen in real life, because I certainly can be, but something about the internet allows the relaxation of some of the filters that I think moderates RL.

Also...the Merlin snippet - very nice! It's so true that Merlin acting like a real servant is a sure sign that something is really, terribly wrong.

This is true. And it's so easy to escalate, even moreso than when arguing in RL. Also, all that extra time stewing while framing your replies should help and totally does not.

Thank you!

*glee* Perfect characterization! Yay!


Merlin + servile competence = Apocalypse Looming.

Hell yes. I feel bad for Arthur.