Merlin AU: Grand Star
It lies in the bowels of the city, nondescript except to those who know it. It’s marked by a door and a sign, but beyond is so much more; another world, of light and smoke and beauty and culture. It doesn’t belong there, among the derelict old buildings, but Morgana Le Fey took it upon herself to immortalize her vision of a perfect club and kept it secret, like a gem. It’s the Grand Star, and within is a woman with the voice of an angel.
To Guinevere, the Grand Star is a blessing. Not in the way that the patrons view it- a place to smoke and drink and have their way for a night- but it’s a source of income. She’s been working at the Grand Star for months, and she considers herself lucky. The boss is kind, the pay is good, and she’s not expected to do anything lewd or immoral. Best of all, she gets to sing.
The Grand Star is a stroke of the best kind of fortune for a girl like her, and she’ll do anything to keep it.
Lancelot, however, seems determined to shatter the idyllic picture.
He’s a patron who starts out as a face in the crowd, a blur. But he becomes more defined as he starts coming every night, starts sitting close by the stage and smiling a secret sort of smile. He begins to stay after closing, cleaning off tables and rinsing glasses because he’s actually not rich and Morgana’s not that kind. Then he becomes friends with her brother, and from there it’s an easy transition from a man who’s there all the time to the man who sits at the piano.
At first, Guinevere resists. She resists when he tells her that she’s bigger and better than this, resists when he contradicts himself and says that she’s perfect as she is. She resists when he tells her that he plays for her, for her voice, for her proximity. She resists looking at his long, strong, slender fingers as they caress the keys. She resists the way his somber eyes rest on her and stay, as if they’ve found a home- resists the way he lights up when her voice reaches a crescendo, expression so vulnerable that she doesn’t think he’s aware of it.
She tries to resist- but they make music together, beautiful music, and suddenly Guinevere isn’t sure if she wants to.