The courtyard of Camelot was buzzing with activity despite it being the early hours of the morning. Merlin saddled up his horse with Alith perched on his shoulder as a falcon. He hadn't let her out of his sight ever since their nightmare last night. Eventually the girth was tight enough and Merlin mounted the dark bay. Arthur looked across at his raven haired servant and was suprised at the depressed expression on the boy's face.

"You alright?" Arthur asked anxiously.

Merlin looked round and gave Arthur a tight lipped smile and a nod. Arthur stared worriedly at the young man a little longer and then yelled out an order to the knights.

"We set off for the village of Neathid. Neathid lies in Odin's land so watch your backs."

The four knights nodded in agreement and mounted their horses. Their wildcat daemons stood beside the horses. Queen Guinevere stood at the top of the steps with her elegant cat daemon, Moonlight, sitting beside her. She waved all of them off.

The small group set off galloping through the thick dense forest, five of their daemons loping beside them. The other daemon flew over her master's head.

"Do you think we should pay attention to that dream?" Alith whispered in Merlin's ear.

Merlin shook his head. "No, it was only a dream like Gaius said."

"Stop!" Arthur called out, bringing the knights and Merlin to a halt.

"Can you hear anything?" Arthur asked.

"No, Sire," Leon answered.

"Exactly," Arthur replied.

Merlin's sharp cry of pain made everyone start in suprise. The young servant was lying on the forest floor, holding his shoulder. Warm red blood trickled through his fingers. Alith was lying by his side as a polecat. The knights and their daemons rushed over to Merlin. Percival yanked the arrow out of the boy's shoulder causing Merlin to give another cry.

"What happened?" Arthur asked, tying a ripped piece of cloth around the wound.

"Something hit my shoulder," Merlin's voice tailed off as he fainted.

Percival's daemon,Salhak, lifted Alith off the ground while Percival took Merlin. Suddenly screams filled the air. Bandits poured in from all sides towards the knights and Arthur.

Sorry it took so long to get up, I've been really busy. Sorry about any grammar mistakes, I never was good at grammar. Thanks to Alethia II and The Hydromancer for sticking with me from the beginning.

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