Title: The Cottage by the Sea (Part 12)
Character/s: Gaius, Arthur
Summary: Merlin reaches out to Gaius using magick.
Word Count: 518
Prompt: 444 Puzzle
Gaius walked into his room and saw the puzzle box on the table. He smiled when he recognized the box that he had given Merlin.
"It's about time!" Gaius went over and scooped it up.
Arthur knocked on the open door. "Gaius?"
Gaius put the box under some papers and turned around. "Yes Sire?"
"I know you're missing Merlin. We are still looking for them both but so far there's been no luck." Arthur told him.
Gaius nodded. "Merlin and Morgana may think they are still wanted for murder. They both have magick. They could be hiding anywhere."
"If Merlin reaches out to you, tell him…" Arthur took a breath. "Tell him I'm sorry and he should come home."
"I doubt he will contact me, Sire. I helped you locate him when they first ran." Gaius looked at the floor so Arthur couldn't see that he was lying.
Arthur nodded. "Right…. I will leave you to your work."
Gaius bowed as Arthur left shutting the door behind him. He took a deep breath and picked up the puzzle box. He shifted and pushed panels until the box popped open. He took out the slip of paper inside and put the box on his desk.
Gaius frowned when he saw the paper was blank. "Still sneaky, I see."
Gaius picked up a knife from the desk and pricked his finger. He let a drop of blood drip on the paper. Writing appeared as soon as the blood hit the paper.
"We are safe. We are married and our first child is on the way. We miss everyone.
Gaius let out a sigh of relief. He threw the paper in the fire then hastily wrote a note of his own.
"Arthur has reconsidered. You no longer wanted for arrest. You can come home.
Gaius passed his hand over the paper and mumbled a spell. The words disappeared. He put it into the box and closed it. He said another spell and tossed the box into the air.
The box disappeared in a puff of smoke.
Merlin turned when he heard something hit the table. He picked up the puzzle box and opened it. He took the note out and put it in his pocket. He looked out the door at Morgana hanging the wash. He closed the box and put it back in the cabinet where he kept his magickal tools.
"Morgana!" Merlin picked up his medicine bag and went outside. "I'm going to check on Tobias."
Morgana kissed him on his cheek. "Don't be too late. I made your favorite for supper."
Merlin smiled and headed down the lane. When he was out of sight, he took the note out of his pocket and pricked his finger with his pocket knife and let the blood touch the paper.
Merlin shook his head as he read the words that appeared. "Not yet Gaius." He glanced back toward the cottage. "Maybe not ever."
Merlin held the note in his hand and burned it with a fireball. He dusted the ashes off his hand and started walking to the village.