Give In, Oh Sweet Surrender
|Title:||Give In, Oh Sweet Surrender|
|Date(s):||30 January 2010|
|Length:||12,602 words / 1:16:27 min|
|External Links:||Give In, Oh Sweet Surrender (LiveJournal)|
Give In, Oh Sweet Surrender (podbook)
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Summary: 'Don't fight back. Just let them take what they want.' This is the first rule Merlin knew. Then Prince Arthur came to wage war on Cenred, and Merlin catches his eyes. He began to learn a new form of surrender.
The story is a canon era AU where Merlin's village has been ruled by different raiders for years. Merlin was raped and learned to accept the attentions of the raiders. Arthur is just a new ruler, or so it seems. Merlin's backstory contains rape and at the beginning his relationship with Arthur isn't free from consent issues either. However, it's the first time Merlin actually likes what's going on and he opens up to Arthur in a way he never has before. Something is different but it takes him a while to figure out what it is.
Lunchee podficced the story and it's available in mp3 format and in a podbook version. The podfic is 1:16:27 min long. At the beginning and the end of the story Lunchee uses music to set the right atmosphere. The end of each section is marked by different sounds, like for example a squeaky mattress during the first few days that are characterized by different sexual encounters between Merlin and Arthur or a shutting door for the months in the middle part of the story when they don't see each other and Merlin tries to figure out his feelings. Also, thoughts and memories sound different and seem to come from farther away. Cybel turned the podfic into an audiobook and it is available at the Audiofic Archive.
- "The direction the story took was very intense. I loved how inane_rational handled Merlin's character. He's extremely volatile at times, and even though he's so downtrodden, he's still surprisingly rebellious and of course, extremely resilient."
- "I love how Merlin has obviously been affected by his years of trauma but still refuses to be broken. The slow build up to a realization that he's capable of love is delightful. My only wish is that we could know what was going on inside Arthur's head in those early days. I get the feeling that he never really wanted to hurt Merlin, but there was also something a little dark and conflicted in the way he carried out his seduction."