Title: The Perfect Ruse
Character/s: Merlin, Gaius, Morgana
Summary: Merlin hatches a plan to get him out of his mission early.
Prompt: 163 Picnic in the sun
Author's Notes: Agent Emrys #6
The Perfect Ruse
Merlin pushed around the food on his plate. Calling Gaius' cooking food may be a bit of a stretch but Merlin was trying to eat it. The thoughts in his head weren't helping.
"What's on your mind?" Gaius asked after watching Merlin for a few minutes.
"I was thinking that if I could enchant some amulet or something with a protection spell then maybe it would keep Arthur safe and I could move on to a new mission." Merlin said.
"Why would you want a new mission? This one is easy." Gaius said as he reached fro the bread. "I dreamed of missions like this when I was an agent."
"I wouldn't call it that easy so far. Neither would poor Hubbard." Merlin chuckled.
"Hmph. So how are you going to get Arthur to wear a piece of jewelry?" Gaius asked.
"He wears jewelry. He wears rings." Merlin said as he gave up trying to eat and pushed his plate away.
"You're going to enchant his wedding ring! Merlin, that's brilliant. His bride will be bringing his ring with her. It will be on display. You can enchant it then." Gaius smiled.
Merlin thought for a moment then shook his head. "That's a great idea but that wedding is never going to happen."
"It had better. That is the most important part of your mission, Merlin." Gaius stood and picked up their plates.
"Look. I know that's what the King wants but it’s not what Arthur wants." Merlin finished his tea.
"It doesn't matter what Arthur wants. He has to obey the King." Gaius put the plates in the sink. He turned and looked at Merlin. "How do you know what Arthur wants?"
Merlin got up. "I just do. I better go haul Arthur out of the pub and put him to bed."
"Merlin. Be careful. You don't want to go against the Pendragon King. He will kill you." Gaius was more serious than Merlin had ever seen him before.
Merlin shrugged and grabbed his coat as he left.
Merlin walked down into the village toward the pub. He caught sight of a figure trying to keep to the shadows. When a cloud in front of the moon moved merlin could see that it was Arthur.
Merlin followed Arthur to a small cottage. He was surprised to see Arthur take out a key and unlock the back door.
Merlin knocked at the front door. He smiled when the dark haired Guinevere opened the door.
"Let me in. I know he's here." Merlin said. "I have to talk to you both."
"Let him in Guinevere. He won't give us away." Arthur said from somewhere in the cottage.
Guinevere let Merlin in and looked around before she closed the door.
"What are you doing here, Merlin? Are you trying to get us caught?" Arthur growled.
"No but I have an idea to get you married. If my plan works everyone will get what they want." Merlin said.
"Except my father. He wants me to marry Elena." Arthur reminded him.
"But you don't want to." Merlin said. "He shouldn't force you to do what you don't want to do."
"He's the King or have you forgotten." Arthur heaved a sigh.
"Just help me find wedding rings and a minister who is a bit blind." Merlin pleaded.
"I have my parents' rings." Guinevere said.
"Father Timmons in Dovetown is blind as a bat." Arthur said.
"How well does he know either of you?" Merlin asked.
"I've never met him." Guinevere looked at Arthur
"He saw me once during Processional but I didn't speak and it was at a distance." Arthur told him.
"Perfect. Meet me at the stables at dawn. We'll go to Dovetown and get you married." Merlin grinned.
"Excuse me but we need two witnesses." Arthur glared at him.
"Morgana will do it." Guinevere said. "I can ask her in the morning."
Arthur looked at Merlin and grinned. "Oh that will be just perfect."
Merlin blushed and Arthur laughed.
“I have one question. How are we going to get away? We need an excuse.” Guinevere looked at them both with her hands on her hips.
“We’ll say we’re going on a picnic. I’ll get the kitchen to make up a basket.” Merlin shrugged.
“You want me to say I’m going on a picnic …. with my sister.” Arthur made a face. “That is the stupidest thing I have ever heard.”
“You could say that you want to spend some time with her before you’re too busy with your wife. Not a lie by the way.” Merlin said.
“Morgana would never be on board with that ridiculous story.” Arthur said.
“I will explain it to her.” Guinevere said. “She knows how I feel about you and with Elena looming over our heads, we have to do something.”
“If she doesn’t go for it we’ll get caught. Father will kill you and him.” Arthur said. He pointed at Merlin.
“I can make her see the sense in it.” Guinevere said. “Don’t worry.”
"I had better get you back. Do you mind if I take the rings now. I’ll keep them safe until morning." Merlin smiled at Guinevere.
Guinevere went to a box on the mantle to get them. She passed Merlin two silver bands.
“Thanks” Merlin turned to Arthur. "Can you act drunk?"
"I do it all the time." Arthur scoffed.
"Let's go." Merlin put the rings in his pocket. "You better use the back door."
"Right. I'll meet you on the corner." Arthur said.
Merlin and Arthur met on the corner. Arthur leaned on Merlin like he was drunk all the way to his room.
Merlin came back to Gaius' rooms. He headed straight for his room. "He really had a snoot full tonight. I'm going to bed. Goodnight."
"Goodnight Merlin." Gaius eyed him suspiciously.
Merlin went into his room and closed the door. He put the rings on the table and held his hand over them and chanted until they glowed.
Merlin picked them up and smiled. "They're perfect."
He put them back in his jacket pocket for safe keeping.
The next morning Merlin was putting the picnic basket in the boot of the car when Morgana showed up.
“So, are you the idiot behind this farce?” Morgana said.
“Yes that would be me.” Merlin smiled and shut the lid of the boot. “Thanks for helping out.”
“If we get caught, I will make sure you die slowly and very painfully.” Morgana looked him up and down before getting in the car.
Arthur and Guinevere came out of the stables.
“She likes you Merlin. She only threatens people she likes.” Arthur gave him a cheeky grin. He and Guinevere got in of the car.
Morgana got in beside Arthur. She looked at him. “You have straw in your hair. Could you not wait just a few more hours?”
Merlin chuckled as he got behind the wheel and sped off to Dovetown and the ‘picnic’ that was a wedding.