40 Days and 40 Fights

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Title: 40 Days and 40 Fights
Author(s): dayari
Date(s): 18 February 2011
Length: 26,052 words
Genre: slash, Modern AU
Fandom: Merlin
External Links: 40 Days and 40 Fights (LiveJournal)
40 Days and 40 Fights (AO3)

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40 Days and 40 Fights is a Merlin/Arthur Highschool AU by dayari.

Summary: High school AU. In which Arthur is (a) the best captain that the volleyball team has seen in ages, (b) too handsome for his own good, and also (c) decidedly not gay; although Merlin agrees with the first two, he's willing to bet that (c) is open for discussion.


Wow. That really yanked my heart out through my ribcage and dragged it through the mud a few times, then tucked it safely and gently back inside me. What a beautiful and heart-wrenching story. I particularly liked that you *didn't* explain in detail the turmoil of shock and thoughts tumbling around inside Arthur. Since he wasn't at a point where he could articulate his feelings even to himself, you captured and conveyed that stunned speechlessness perfectly.[1]
I don't think you understand how much love I have for this, I really don't. [...] First: the angst! The angst. I love angst. Really. And you executed that perfectly, as you did everything else. I loved your Merlin, how persistent, yet patient he was. I loved your Arthur and how he slowly got to the realization that he liked Merlin a bit more than he wanted to admit. And to make him the captain of a volleyball team? Genius. Leon was just lovely, I wanted to hug and beam at him through all of this. Actually, I loved everyone in this. Uther's awkward attempts at being a father was just awesome to read. [...] I really like how rich with detail this entire fic was too. I loved the flashbacks/flash-forwards and didn't find it even one bit confusing. Also, how awesome are you for finishing where you finished it? Kind of unresolved, but not really. One part of me is craving to see how Arthur and Merlin's relationship build after this, but on the other hand it's pretty much perfect to leave it off where you did.[2]
This was just really spectacular. Like, I've been on an m/a reading frenzy and they've all been pretty great and I don't normally go for AUs, [...] but it was so hard not to enjoy Arthur's journey here. Honestly, this fic could list Arthur as a standalone character because it's so introspective and it's wonderful, really, to see him achieve that self-worth or acknowledgment, or whatever it is he accomplishes by the end of all that mess! (He might even get Merlin! Lucky him. ;D)[3]
This was an interesting high school fic. I enjoyed how angry, confused and very unselfaware poor Arthur is. Each character felt very realistic to me.[4]


  1. ^ kattale. Comment, 18 February 2011. (Accessed 18 February 2012)
  2. ^ skeletonwords. Comment, 19 February 2011. (Accessed 18 February 2012)
  3. ^ irstyoufall. Comment, 01 June 2011. (Accessed 18 February 2012)
  4. ^ "Modern AU Arthur/Merlin Recs [A-J]". Archived from the original on 2022-06-22.