I. A Partridge in a……apple tree?
It was a month since the incident…and by incident, Emma meant finding Regina on the floor of her vault, under what she later found out was caused by a sleeping curse given to her by Rumple to cover up his evil scheme…but that’s not really the incident, no, it doesn’t happen until they’re at the hospital and Emma isn’t sure if it was the fear of seeing another person she cares for in danger so soon after everything with Henry and Cruella, or well, just the last 3 years. So yeah there Regina was unconscious on a hospital bed, Whale was muttering something about sleeping curses, Snow was looking like her puppy was kicked, and Henry was trying to hold back tears and she just…well, she kissed her, okay!? She kissed her and that gust of rainbow light shot out of their joined lips and Henry was yelling mom and running toward them and when Regina opened her eyes and looked at her asking what had happened Emma panicked! I mean, you can’t blame her! It’s rather hard to wrap your head around so she said the first thing that popped into her mind which was “Henry woke you!” and well, what else was she supposed to do!? She didn’t even realize she loved the infuriating woman until like two seconds ago when the fear of losing her settled in her stomach like a very large brick…or that time she ate a whole cake when she was a teen…that was a bad idea.
And so here she was a month later watching her walking around town with that man…he’s not worthy of a name after how he treated Regina! Right, okay that’s not important…she’s supposed to be the bigger person…and she’s been trying! Really but he’s insufferable! And Regina is her true love and just fuck him! But we’re getting off topic here…what matters is her plan, the plan that will clue Regina in to everything, make her realize she’s her true love and not forest boy…and it all starts with a bird in a tree and the lyrics of that damn Christmas song that’s been stuck in her head since she was a kid.
So the problem was where the hell she could find a pear tree and how to get the damn bird to stay put long enough for Regina to see it…but apparently the woman has a thing against pears because she scoured the whole town, threatened a grocer and even tried to conjure one but it…well, it grew apples, APPLES! So that leaves her with only one option, to put the damn Partridge in the apple tree outside her office…and tethering it there magically so it wouldn’t fly away as soon as she put it there.
And she waited…she did, she really did but it had been hours and the damn woman didn’t look out her window let alone notice Emma in all her dark evil glory! So she did the unthinkable, she texted her…
“Emma,” She heard her name gasped as Regina appeared in front of her eyes trailing over the black leather before finally locking on hers.
“Okay, I couldn’t get a pear tree so I put it in your apple tree…I just…I’m starting to think you have something against pears, there’s not a single tree in all of Storybrooke! I couldn’t even find seeds! Heck! I couldn’t find pears! I tried to conjure a tree, do you know what I got, an apple tree! Apple, Regina! Do you know how many apple trees I have now!? Just Jesus, Regina! What did they ever do to you!?”
Regina just blinked at her, eyes scanning all over her again and her brows furrowing adorably…and Emma is getting distracted again.
“Have you even noticed it!? Jesus!” And then Emma disappeared, muttering about pears and birds…did she say partridge? Porridge? And then she hears a bird chirp and she looks up and there it is a bird in her tree.
“What the hell is that supposed to mean!?” Regina yells toward the sky before pulling out her phone and sending Emma a text, “Cute, very creative, really. But now could you come collect your bird before it destroys my apples?”
She looked up at it again, brows furrowing, “Partridge, why does that sound familiar?” and after a few more minutes of staring up at it she shook her head, turning around to go back into her office, the damn bird was still there when she left later that day…
II. Two Turtle Doves…Wreaking Havoc.
It was not gone the next morning either…Regina huffed as she glared at the damned thing singing happily in its nest…when the hell did it get a nest!?
She was pulling out her phone to send Emma another angry text when she was dive bombed by something as soon as she opened her office door…and that thing turned out to be a turtle dove!? Why was there a dove in her office!?
She yelped, eyes wide as it landed on her head, cooing…except the problem was, she was staring at the dove on her desk so that means, “I’m going to kill her.” She growled, swatting at the bird messing up her hair to get it off her head before it did something much worse to her hair.
The dove joined its pair on top of her desk the two cooing and nuzzling and just…really with the damn birds!?
Her jaw clenched as she hit speed dial, the phone ringing twice before going to voicemail. “You did not just send me to voicemail, Ms. Swan!” She practically screamed into the phone, slamming the door shut, her purse dropping to the floor in a thud before she continued. “Alright, the bird in the tree was cute for like a minute but it hasn't left and I do not have time to be chasing doves out of my office so if you don't mind would you remove these monstrosities from my office!?” She let out a few panting breaths before ending the call, glaring that the birds. “What did I do to her to deserve this?”
Then they were flying around again and she won’t be telling anyone about the screech she let out let alone how she hit the floor so fast she would definitely be finding bruises on knees later…and she won’t be mentioning that she laid on her stomach with her hands over her head either…or that there was a lot of quiet cussing involved when the damn things landed on her back, walking around on her cooing happily still…if they don’t shut up she will be serving the saviour roasted doves for dinner!
“That’s it!” She yelled shooting up, the things flying wildly around her office, she growled lowly in her throat, debating on setting her office aflame before she just teleported herself back home, looking up pest control specialists and debating on calling Snow White if she had too, the woman was the damn bird whisperer after all!
Okay, so her plan wasn’t quite working as planned but Emma would be lying if she said she wasn’t laughing hysterically when the bird landed on her head…or at anything else that followed…and she could barely breathe as she listened to the voicemail while watching the very regal woman splayed across the floor with the birds walking all over her back…and well, it was rare to hear her curse and Emma would be replaying that moment in her mind forever. So maybe she hasn’t gotten the hints yet but well, this was too funny!
III. Three French Hens on Today’s Dinner Menu.
Regina was barely awake when Henry ran into the kitchen yelling about chickens in the backyard and Regina knew just who was to blame for the three damn things tearing apart her lawn.
“Your mother is a dead woman.”
Henry looked at her with worried eyes before looking back at the clucking beasts, “Mom, she’s the Dark One, that’s not exactly an easy feat.”
Regina huffed, pursing her lips, “How would you like chicken for dinner?”
“Mom!” Henry exclaimed, looking at her like he didn’t know where his food came from.
“Just…get ready for school, dear.”
Henry frowned, looking at her, eyes searching, “Promise me you won’t hurt them.”
“Henry…where do you think your food comes from?”
He huffs, rolling his eyes in a way too much like her own before he says, “I know where it comes from, but I don’t want to know where it comes from!”
She rolled her eyes, folding her arms across her chest, pursing her lips, “Fine, I promise to not hurt them.”
“Thank you,” He said before turning and leaving, Regina’s eyes never leaving the damned birds…what, was Emma becoming her mother!?
She glared for a little while longer before sending the blonde an angry text because phone calls got her nowhere and well, if Henry heard her he’d start whining about the damned things again and she can’t be promising not to harm the things while threatening the damned things in the same breath…it just doesn’t have the right results.
“ Emma…why are there chickens in my backyard? It is not a farm please remove them before I decide to make roasted chicken tonight. ”
“Is that so?”
She didn’t jump, no, not at all she was completely calm it’s not like the Dark One appearing behind you and husking so close to your ear would be frightening…and maybe a little sexy but, no, she wasn’t thinking that either!
“Did I scare you?”
“No,” Regina said, eyes roaming the woman in front of her, “Still sporting all that leather I see.”
Emma was smirking, eyes looking Regina up and down in her fuzzy robe and slippers and sleep mused hair and dammit all to hell. “You look cute, I never realized how short you are.”
Regina huffed, hands moving to her hips as she glared up at Emma, “I am not short.” She said even as she had to tilt her head up to meet her eyes, “You’re only tall because you’re wearing those ridiculous heels.”
Emma looked down at them with a pout, “They’re not any different than the ones you used to wear, your majesty.”
Regina rolled her eyes, “Now are you going to remove the feathered beasts from my yard or not?”
“Not,” Emma shrugged, waving her hand, “I just came to protect them from anything you tried to do to them…and no matter how bad you claim to be I doubt you’re going to chase them around your yard and chop their cute little heads off…just imagine Henry’s sad little face when he comes home to headless birds running around the yard.”
Regina glared, stepping into Emma’s space, “What the hell is this about anyway? What’s with all these damn birds!?”
“You still haven’t figured it out?” Emma huffed, throwing up her arms, “You say you’re so smart but you can’t even figure out something this simple!” and then the damned blonde was gone, a cleaver in a log just outside her back door taunting her, testing her, and the insufferable idiot was right! She refused to behead the damned things and break her promise to Henry.
“Why is there a cleaver outside?”
“Because your mother thinks she’s funny,” Regina muttered turning and heading back toward the stairs to get ready for the day.
“At least they’re not roosters!” Henry calls, Regina grunting in agreement as she thinks of how to remove another bird problem…perhaps the animal shelter specializes in bird removal.
IV. Four Colly Birds Crapping All Over Her Marble Countertop
There was crap everywhere! And when she says everywhere she means it! She wasn’t even ashamed of the horrified scream she let out when she entered her kitchen that afternoon to a crap filled hellhole with four tiny black birds making a home in one of her pots that they filled with paper towel and anything else they found worthy for their nest.
Her eye was twitching and her hands were already filled with fire and one look at her shit covered kitchen she let them fly…except they fizzled out as soon as they got close to the vermin so she was left with one thing only, calling the saviour turned Dark One into her kitchen to clean the place.
“Emma Swan, Emma Swan, Emma Swan.”
“You know I’m not like Beetlejuice, you don’t have to say my name three times for me to show up.”
Regina whirled on her in an instant, finger poking her square in the chest, “Look what your birds did to my kitchen, Ms. Swan! There’s shit everywhere! I’ll never be able to use that pot again, or my mixer! Actually anything! I might as well burn it all but oh wait, I can’t do that because you protected the beasts from my magic!”
Emma’s eyes moved from Regina to finally look at the state of the once immaculate kitchen and she winced, “In all fairness, I thought you’d find them this morning.”
Regina growled, the sound rather frightening with her eyes looking so angry and her lips set in that snarl…and okay, the vein in her forehead was popping…this was very bad.
“I’ll fix it, relax.”
“Don’t tell me to relax, Ms. Swan! Everything has been invaded by birds! I went to my office earlier and the doves have laid eggs and made their nest on my mantle!”
“I’m sorry, I’ll fix that too, I promise.” Emma grimaced before looking around waving her hand. The kitchen now spotless and the Colly birds in a gold cage hanging from her fingertips, “But these are still for you, where would you like them? Living room? Study? Bedroom?”
Regina stepped closer again, “I don’t want them, period !”
“That’s not an option, they’re a gift. I’ll leave them in the study, they’ll look nice with the decor.” And then she was gone again and when Regina ran to her study There they were, hanging from a gold stand in the corner of the room.
With a sigh, she mumbled to herself, “At least they’re no longer crapping all over my kitchen…and they are kind of cute…
V. Five Golden Rings Placed Around Town.
She wakes up that morning to a red velvet box on her nightstand, it’s confusing at first and her heart starts beating rapidly when she thinks it might be from Robin but she’s shocked to realize it’s fear she’s feeling at that thought not excitement but then she remembers Emma’s recent gift giving and a smile twitches on her lips as she reaches out for the small box, flicking on the bedside light as she runs her finger over the smooth velvet and she gasps as she opens the box, the ring glinting in the light, it’s gold and in the center it’s Henry’s birthstone.
“Oh Emma…” she pulls the ring out of the box, trying it on and chuckling to herself as it fits perfectly because, of course it does. She’s not even weirded out by the probability of Emma in her bedroom while she slept or that the woman who was her friend turned Dark One would gift her with a ring because well, to be honest this was the most normal gift she’s gotten all week.
She smiles as she gets ready for the day, doesn’t realize she’s humming while she’s cooking until Henry points it out when he comes downstairs.
“Why’re you so happy today? Yesterday you looked like you were close to murder half the time.”
She smiled softly at him, “I just am. Now, pancakes for breakfast?”
“Yes!” Henry cheered, completely forgetting about why he was so curious earlier…that is until he sees the ring on his mom’s finger while she’s serving him his pancakes, “What’s that?”
Regina’s brows furrow before she follows his eyes to her hand, the ring glistening on her right ring finger, “It’s a ring.”
Henry rolls his eyes, “I know that. But it’s new, I haven’t seen it before.”
“You are correct, it is new.”
“Who’s it from?” His face morphs into a grimace for a second but he quickly covers it up but not fast enough for Regina to miss it, “It’s not from Robin is it? You’re not engaged right!?”
Regina laughs, walking around the island to place a kiss on the side of his head, “If you must know it’s from your mother, I think it’s an apology gift after her previous ones destroyed my home and office.”
Henry snickers, remembering his mom chasing a chicken through the house last night after it had gotten in when he left the back door open for a second too long.
“She finally done with the birds?”
“It would appear so,” She replies, “Now eat your breakfast, your grandparents will be here for you in an hour for your day with them.”
Regina rolls her eyes, moving to plate herself her own pancakes.
Now, when she got in her car that morning she really wasn’t expecting to find another ring box on her dash just behind her steering wheel but there it was, the same bright red velvet as the other. She didn’t even bother pulling the car door shut as she reached through the gap in the steering wheel plucking the thing up and popping it open, and again a gasp left her mouth followed by a slight laugh, because of course.
She pulls the ring out, it’s a small golden swan with diamond studded wings, it’s rather subtle considering who it’s from, it’s smaller than the other and it only takes her a second to realize it’s for her pinky and with a roll of her eyes she slips it on, holding her hand up to the sun, her smile growing as the gems on the wings glisten in the sunlight.
“Good morning, Regina!”
“Snow!” She gasps, dropping her hand onto her lap, “Here to get Henry?”
“I am,” She was smiling that unnerving smile that told Regina she was up to something, “What’s that?”
Regina looks to the open ring box and reaches out, snapping it shut, “Nothing of importance. Henry is just inside, I have to get going. I have to check on my doves.”
“Your doves?” Snow’s brows are furrowed as she drops her eyes to her hands again, “Is that a swan?”
Regina rolled her eyes, reaching out to the door handle to pull it closed, “Your daughter thought it’d be funny to gift me with birds recently, they have mated and laid eggs in my office I have to check in and make sure she dealt with them like promised.” And with a pointed look Snow stepped back to let her pull the door closed, her face still just slightly less confused.
“And the ring?”
“An apology for the mess her gifts left in my kitchen. Now when you get inside will you remind Henry to feed the chickens and make sure they don’t go in the house this time?”
Snow nodded, jumping when she slammed the car door and threw her car into reverse. “I think I need to have a talk with your sister,” She spoke to the baby strapped to her chest before turning toward the mansion.
She stops at Granny’s for a coffee like usual but what she wasn’t expecting was a smirking Ruby when she entered, “Do I have something on my face?”
She shakes her head, reaching into her apron for something and then brandishing a very familiar red velvet box, “this was left behind with detailed instructions to give it to you when you arrived.”
Regina’s eyes drop to the box then lift back up to Ruby’s face before dropping to the box again, and she could feel the damned smile twitching on her face already and, screw Emma and her damned gifts.
“Well, you gonna open it!?” Ruby encouraged, nudging the velvet box toward her, “I’ve been curious all morning but well, I couldn’t open it.” Regina’s eyes raised to look at her, her brow shooting up in question, “Oh, don’t look at me like that, you know I’m a snoop.”
Regina rolled her eyes, reaching out her hand and plucking the ring box from the waitress’s hand, “don’t look so excited, Emma’s just sucking up after her birds destroyed my home.”
“Birds?” Ruby frowned.
“Yes, she’s been giving me birds for 4 days now, maybe five if you count the swan ring…first she placed a partridge in my apple tree, then she released two doves in my office, which she followed by mistaking my backyard as a farm for her three chickens, and yesterday she let loose four Colly birds in my kitchen destroying the place…and here we are, with her sucking up.”
“A partridge in an apple tree, two turtle doves, three French hens, and four colly birds?”
“Yes, that’s what I said, well not the specific species of chickens and doves.”
Ruby laughed, shaking her head at her, “Oh jeez, this will be interesting.”
“What’s that supposed to mean?”
“Just open the ring box, Regina, I got tables to wait on.”
Regina huffed, popping open the box and looking at the small golden crown, it was simple like the swan just the little crown in the middle of the gold band with a little purple gem at the tip of the crown but nevertheless, it still brought a smile to her face.
“Cute, who knew Swan had such good taste, I figured it’d be something huge and gaudy.”
Regina’s eyes shot up to her, smile dropping as she snapped the ring box closed, “My coffee, Ms. Lucas.”
Ruby laughed, “Coming right up, madam mayor.”
Regina lowered herself onto one of the stools, popping open the ring box again as she stared down at the thing, her heart speeding up again and her stomach fluttering in the way it does when Emma is around…except she’s not and it’s just this little ring but she doesn’t think she’s ever felt this happy in a long while.
“What’s that?” Okay, this time she did jump, the ring lid snapping shut as she turned to look at Robin standing next to her.
“Nothing, it’s just a gift.”
He frowned, looking down at the little velvet box, “From who?”
“Emma,” She stated, looking toward Ruby hoping she was returning with her coffee so she could make a hasty exit.
“Emma? The Dark One? The woman who threatened your life last week got you jewelry?”
Regina looked at him, pursing her lips as she tried how best to explain the oddest week of her life…and that’s saying something. “Yes,” She really couldn’t explain it.
He looked angry, which she didn’t understand while at the same time she did, I mean, she was getting jewelry from someone else and they were sort of back on…it’s complicated, they haven’t talked much since she saved his life, she’s been back to worrying about Emma and then, well, the gifts started showing up and she’s been rather busy with corralling her new collection of birds…which reminds her, she has doves to check on.
“Here you go, Regina,” Ruby smirked, sliding the coffee across the table, “Have a good day.”
“Thank you, Ms. Lucas,” She smiled at the waitress, pinning the question of when the girl came back for later as she turned to look at Robin, “I must be going, I have some important things to handle,” and with that she slipped from her stool, slipping the ring box into her pocket and smiling kindly at Robin before brushing past him and walking as fast as she could to her car parked out front, pretending not to notice him calling for her…and if she poofed into her car to cut down time nobody could blame her, really, who wants the awkward talk of why the other mother of your child, the most powerful evil being in all the worlds is giving her rings.
When she stepped into her office she was relieved to see the budding family of doves were now in their own gold cage like the Colly birds in the corner of her office, happily sitting on their egg.
“I suppose I’ll have to be feeding you both too?” The dove sitting on the perch above the one warming the eggs cooed in reply, “Very well.”
And with a wave of her wrist, there was bird seed in a dish and fresh water before she moved to put her briefcase at her desk, doing a double take when she saw the little red box sitting on her desk.
With a sigh she dropped the case by her feet, sitting down as she plucked the box from atop this week’s reports from the sheriff station, “What, now you’re finishing your work on time? Not too busy with evil schemes and bird wrangling?” she chuckled to herself as she hit send on the text, letting her phone drop to her desk before reclining in her seat and popping open the 4th red velvet box.
She smiled at the simple gold infinity symbol that sat in the middle of the gold ring, the band appearing to have drawn out the symbol, “An infinity sign? I’m not 20.”
And yet, she kind of loved it, it was very much Emma and they were forever connected via their son so, it definitely had meaning to them.
“I’m evil, I have people to wrangle birds for me now,” Came Emma’s reply making her roll her eyes.
“Of course, I should have known the Dark One has her own personal bird catcher, and here I was imagining you running through the forest in those ridiculous heels catching birds with Henry’s old butterfly net…you know, the one that went missing sometime last week?” she never got a reply to that but that made her proud to know she stooped the big bad Dark One herself…but well, she was still Emma Swan and that woman wasn’t hard to fluster.
There were no more rings for the rest of the day and she was sure the one in her office was the last until she stepped out of her bathroom later that night and swore she saw a swirl of dark grey smoke in her peripheral vision, turning her eyes locked on the little red velvet box sitting atop her comforter.
“Really, Ms. Swan?” she asked the empty room as she walked toward her bed, plucking the thing off her blanket before dropping to sit where it once was, “Well, what will it be next? An arrow? Apple? Don’t tell me a bird will fly out of this thing?”
She heard her phone chime and she turned to look at the mirror on her vanity, eyebrow raising as she stood back up, walking toward her bedside table to pick up her phone, rolling her eyes at the two words lighting up the screen, “Shut up”
“Spying now are we?” She asked her reflection, “Very original, Ms. Swan.”
“Would you just open it!? God, you’re so maddening!”
She chuckled wickedly as she read the message before popping open the box and her hand shot up to cover her mouth, a loud gasp leaving her lips as she looked at the beautiful ring, gold band like the others but this time instead of plain it was two small diamond encrusted bands twisting together and circling around a rather large Asscher cut emerald, “Emma…”
“Do you like it?”
Her head jerked up to see Emma standing at the end of her bed, shuffling from foot to foot, looking as much as her old self as she had in a while even with the tight bun holding back now white hair and that all black number that gave her too many enchanted forest flashbacks to be okay.
“I…” She blinked, looking down at the gold ring, her heart was beating uncontrollably in her chest and she could feel tears stinging the corners of her eyes and for some reason, her mind was screaming yes and just…“Did you just propose to me? Because we haven’t even been on a date yet and I…” She looked at Emma who was staring at her with wide eyes that almost matched the colour of the gem on this much too expensive and extravagant ring to possibly be platonic but, well, it was Emma… “I love it, Emma, all of them, really, they’re perfect.” She smiled softly as Emma’s grin widened, “And I forgive you, for the birds crapping all over my kitchen yesterday.”
Emma rolled her eyes then, “Glad to hear,” and then she was in Regina’s personal space, gentle fingers running over her cheek in such a gentle touch that if Regina wasn’t staring right at her she might not notice it was happening…but then it’s Emma and she always knows when she’s around, can feel every time her hand hovered over her back or she stood just a little too close…every time those beautiful eyes were watching her.
“Goodnight, Regina,” And then she was gone in another puff of grey smoke and Regina sucked in an unsteady breath…
“What just happened?” she asked the room, almost expecting her phone to chime with a response again but it didn’t come and the pounding in her chest became a little more hallow, a little more sad as she realized she missed that insufferable woman more than she probably should.
VI. Six Geese a Laying…Eggs on My Front Lawn!?
She was in a weird state of euphoria all morning, the ring was sitting in its box on her vanity, she was humming while she made pancakes again and Henry was watching her with an unreadable smirk that reminds her of the one he gave her after he announced operation mongoose.
“You’re happy this morning.”
She looked at him then, rolling her eyes, “Yes, well so far there’s been no birds destroying my home.”
Henry snickered and mumbled something around his bite of bacon and yup, her son was up to something again.
She squinted her eyes at him, pointing the spatula at him as she asked, “What are you up to, Henry?”
“Nothin,” he said but was still smirking in that mischievous way that reminded her too much of herself…it appears she created a monster…an adorable loving one but a monster all the same.
“Keep it up and you’ll be eating oatmeal for breakfast instead of the pancakes.”
“You wouldn’t! That’s child abuse!”
Regina cackled, dropping the pancakes on his plate, “You’re almost as dramatic as your mother when it comes to food.”
Henry snickered, tearing into his pancakes as he said, “Sorry to break it to you, mom but I got my dramatic side from you it just overlapped into my love for food.”
“Eat your breakfast, I’m going to get ready.” And she is going to get ready, but as she’s walking past the foyer to go up the stairs she hears this weird squawking sound and…this does not bode well if the last few days account for anything.
She takes a deep breath because she feels like she needs it and then opens the door, cursing under her breath as she locks eyes with one of 6 geese on her lawn in nests and just…are they laying eggs!?
“Oh no, you don’t! Scram! I don’t know why you think this was a good place to start a family but I will turn your young into omelets!”
They all look at her at once and she won’t admit that the honk they all let out at once scared her and she definitely won’t admit that it made her quickly slam her front door shut and lean against it like the damned things were going to break it down…she’s heard stories about geese, they weren’t known for being nice, even the Canadian ones.
She peeks out the side window, eyeing the beasts and cusses again, she’s going to kill that woman if they’re not gone by the time she leaves for work.
And they aren’t, they’re still sitting on her lawn on their new eggs preening and staring at her and Henry as they stand in the doorway, “Can I kill them at least?”
She groans, “It’s probably pointless to try, your mother has protected all the others.” She purses her lips, “How about if I just skin Emma alive? She’s the Dark One, she’ll live and recover easily.”
“Set her hair on fire?”
Henry looks at her, saw the pout on her face and rolled his eyes, “Don’t look so sad about not being able to torture, Ma…it’s creepy.”
She looks guiltily down at him, “Sorry, dear.”
Henry nodded, looking back at the geese when one squawked, “How do we get past them? I need to get to school.”
“Yes, well it appears the all mighty Dark One didn’t consider that fact.”
“We could just poof there.”
She sighed, dropping her head, “ it's not called ‘poofing’…I will kill that woman for teaching you that.”
Henry rolled his eyes, shrugging as he eyes a very angry looking goose, “Teleporting then? Just, I’m going to be late for school, mom.”
“Much better,” She said before wrapping her arm around the boy and with a rather dramatic motion of her arm they teleported away in a puff of violet smoke, reappearing in front of his school making a few of the parents and students gasp in shock. “Have a good day at school, dear, I promise to try and not kill your mother.”
Henry smiled at her, leaning forward to kiss her cheek goodbye, “Thanks, mom, good luck with the geese.”
She nudged him toward the entrance before waving her arms and teleporting herself to the blonde’s fancy new home and banging on the door.
“Yes?” Emma said from behind her and she spun on her heel marching toward her and jabbing her in the chest with her finger.
“Why are there geese laying eggs on my front lawn!? And why aren’t they leaving!? I swear, Ms. Swan, I’m not raising their young too.”
Emma laughed as Regina gripped her arm, “Whoa, if you wanna get this handsy you gotta buy me dinner first.”
Regina growled deep in her throat making Emma gulp before Regina tugged her down the sidewalk.
“Are we going on a romantic stroll? Because I didn’t have time to pack a picnic and I’m pretty sure that’s like an important part.”
“You are going to remove them from my front yard this instant, Ms. Swan, Henry and I couldn’t leave the house this morning!”
“Really? Cause you being here says otherwise.”
Regina skidded to a halt, turning to glare at her, not even realizing what their close proximity might look to passersby, “I teleported here after teleporting Henry to school so our son wouldn’t get mauled by those beasts trying to get to my car!”
Emma smirked, “They can’t hurt you, they’re in an invisible cage, but you’d know that if you paid more attention, your majesty.”
“In…” she let out a frustrated sigh, hands moving on her hips as she continued to glare at Emma, “Ms. Swan, I don’t care if they’re in a fucking glass bubble! I just want the damn things off my lawn! Six geese, Emma, six! Lined up on my lawn on their giant eggs squawking and shitting and getting feathers everywhere! What do you think it looks like to my neighbours!? I had to explain to Mrs. Farrell next door why a chicken was sitting in her flower bed yesterday how do you think she’ll feel when she walks out of her house to six birds just lounging on my front lawn!? I didn’t agree with a damn petting zoo in my house!”
She was huffing by the time she was done, chest rising and falling in time with her erratic breathing but Emma was just watching her, a smirk on her face.
“Anyone ever tell you how sexy you are when you’re angry cause, whoa!”
“You can’t be serious right now!”
Emma’s eyes dropped to her lips and she gulped, her heart speeding up for a different reason as her gut twisted and dropped at the hungry look in Emma’s eyes.
Emma’s fingertips were grazing across her cheek again and she found herself in the same trance as yesterday when green eyes locked on hers, and cursed internally as she felt herself leaning into the touch, into the woman’s body…just damn her.
Emma’s thumb ran over her lips, eyes focused on them as her thumb stopped in the middle of her bottom lip, moving it down so her bottom lip pulled away from the top, “Your lips are so soft.”
She gulped, eyes not leaving Emma’s face even though they just wanted to flutter shut and her body just wanted to fall into her, to be wrapped up in everything Emma Swan and never move and then….
“Regina!?” and before she could even process that her name didn’t come from Emma and place the voice of who did call it Emma was gone in a puff of smoke and she was standing alone on the sidewalk half a block from the blondes house with her heart pounding a fast beat and her stomach in knots and so many things rushing through her mind and body that she didn’t understand or have time to process before Robin was standing in front of her pouting and angry at the same time and…would he just go back to New York!? Wait where did that come from?
“Robin,” She breathed, eyes finally focusing on his face.
“What the hell was that!?”
“N-nothing, we were just talking,” Except she knew he could probably see the arousal in her eyes and her voice was definitely huskier than usual and yeah…she was screwed.
“Right, talking. Does talking usually involve feeling each other up?”
“No?” Why did that come out as a question? Why was she missing Emma’s hands on her face so much…damn her!
“No? Hell, Regina.”
“I’m sorry,” Was the next thing out of her mouth because she was sorry and she didn’t understand what was going on but she just needed Emma back here looking at her like that and touching her and…ah fuck, she’s royally screwed! She’s gone and fallen for the mother of her son, the Dark One, the daughter of her former enemy and, what is wrong with her!? She has Robin, her soulmate, he’s supposed to be her happy ending but…ugh.
“Yeah, me too.”
“No, it’s okay. I understand. I always thought there was something between you two...I guess I was right,” He shrugged looking at her with sad eyes and she should feel sadder, shouldn’t she?
She crossed her arms over her chest, protecting herself from the world, “I don’t know what to say…I don’t even really understand what’s going on myself.”
He smiled sadly, reaching out to caress her cheek and she frowned at how wrong it suddenly felt, “It’s okay, you figure it out and let me know.”
He stepped back moving to walk away and she called out, “I really am sorry.”
“I know,” he smiled and then walked away, Regina deflating, running her hands through her hair, looking up to find Emma standing on her front porch but in the next second the woman was gone and Regina was left alone on a sidewalk on the other side of town from her office and her heart in the pit of her stomach.
She let out another sigh and waved her arms, crossing them in front of her body just before the cloud of smoke engulfed her and took her to her office where she quickly fed the doves, then she teleported to her bedroom, spending the rest of the day curled up on the chaise in her room staring at that damned ring again.
What does it all mean?
VII. Seven Swans a Swimming…and One Will Probably Get a Head Cold Tomorrow.
1 son, 3 chickens, 4 colly birds, 6 geese and 2 doves fed…because that’s her life now…although Henry still mostly takes care of the chickens…they seem to have taken to him best, although whenever she goes out back they follow her around like little ducklings…it would be cute if they didn’t destroy her flowerbeds. She’s just happy she doesn’t have to feed the bird up in her tree because honestly, she might just leave it to parish if she had to do any climbing…and it’s not like Henry has met this one…
She looks out the window at the thing pecking at one of her apples and scowls, what has her life become!? Snow White talks to the damn things and she’s never been subjected to them invading her whole life…or having to explain why there were geese making ungodly noises on her front lawn at the crack of dawn.
She almost falls out of her chair when she sees Emma standing outside town hall literally a week later in the same place, looking up at the damn bird in her apple tree and then like she knows she’s watching Emma turns to look at her and waves.
She teleports down there because well, she’s still angry, yes that’s it, it’s not like her heart is sore from missing her and she definitely didn’t wear that ring all evening yesterday to see how it felt and she most certainly didn’t sleep in it and she didn’t just take it off this morning because she didn’t want to answer any questions about what could positively be considered an engagement ring.
“What are you doing here?”
“Walk with me?”
Regina frowned, looking at the laid-back demeanour of the woman, she looked almost relaxed, but why, “Why should I?”
Emma sighed, taking a step forward, “Please, you’ll enjoy it, I promise.”
Regina rolled her eyes, “Very well but only because the doves are slowly driving me mad.”
Emma smirked at her then, “Mhmm, if that’s how you wanna play this.”
“I’m not playing anything.”
“Right…” And then Emma was walking, “You coming, your majesty?”
Regina rolled her eyes, following after her, “Where are we going?”
“It’s a surprise.”
“How do you have so much time to annoy me when you’re supposed to be planning the town’s destruction?”
She shrugged, “You’re more fun, and I made it rain for…” She trailed off, pulling out her phone to check the time, “26 hours on the blue fairy.”
Regina laughed, “Now that’s some evil deeds I can get behind.”
Emma grinned widely at her, looking like a kid in a candy store as she asked, “You want to hear what I did to my parents?”
“Ooh, do tell…”
Emma hooked their arms together pulling them further through the town toward their destination, “Well, every time they try to call you they get redirected to Hook if it’s past a certain time…usually, after the real fun begins…” Emma is grinning and Regina’s not even trying to pretend she’s upset about their position and maybe she’s even leaning into Emma a little, “every time they open the front door sex noises sound throughout the place, and everything they eat tastes like the thing they hate most…which at first was a little weird cause I didn’t make it food related and dad was puking all over the apartment cause his breakfast tasted like shit…literally.”
Regina barked out a laugh, “You realize you should probably let them enjoy some things, you don’t want them to stop eating and die.”
Emma shrugged, “It’s only been 2 days.”
“Should I ask what you’ve done with Gold or is that off topic?”
“Sorry, that’s too vital to my evil scheme to reveal but I can tell you about how I made Hook wear a dress for a week.”
“I saw that. Not a very attractive sight, my dear.”
Emma shrugged, “Maybe, but it was sure as hell funny.”
“Why are we at the park? Is this because you didn’t get a picnic yesterday because that was never on the agenda.”
Emma laughed, “You’ll see…” And then she was leading them toward the little lake that had 6 swans swimming around in it.
“Six more birds? I guess I should just be happy they aren’t in my bathtub, huh?”
“Stay here,” Emma instructed then made a beeline toward the lake, grey smoke encircling her and changing her into a…swan costume?
“What are you wearing? Emma, no, don’t –” she grimaced as Emma jumped in, sputtering and letting out a loud gasp when she rose up from under the cold water.
“Well, honestly it’s what you deserve,” She said, hand moving to press against her lips to hold back her laughter.
“I th-thought you might enjoy this more th-than my other idea after y-yesterday,” Emma said through her shivering, her teeth chattering together and lips blue.
Regina rolled her eyes, taking a step toward the lake, “Yes, it’s very funny but you’re going to freeze,” a swan honked, pecking Emma’s bun, “And maybe before they attack, you may think you’re one of them, dear but to them you’re just a strange woman in their home wearing some stupid outfit.”
Emma waded toward her, “What are you talking about? I’ve spent hours with them preparing for this moment.”
That did it, that had her laughter breaking free and one hand clutched at her stomach as she threw her head back, looking up at the sky and shaking it, “You really are an idiot, Ms. Swan.”
“Hey!” Emma pouted, finally at the edge of the lake, “I’m the Dark One, you can’t treat me like that!”
Regina looked down at her, “I don’t see the Dark One right now. All I see is a rather odd woman dressed like a swan soaked to the bone and who will most likely be suffering from a head cold tomorrow.”
Emma pushed herself out of the lake, ready to do, well she’s not sure what because Regina didn’t give her a chance, in a cloud of violet she was gone and Emma, the darkest force in all the worlds, was left soaking wet in a ridiculous swan costume…alone and yeah, probably has a cold.
“Dammit. Well, I’ll show her.” Emma muttered to herself before she disappeared too, 5 swans in the lake.
“Holy shit!” She screams, flat on her ass in the door of her bathroom as she stares at the fucking swan in her fucking bathtub that just honked at her, “Ms. Swaaaaan!”
The thing honks again flapping its wings and getting water everywhere.
“Stay back, Henry!” She calls, eyes never leaving the beast.
“Why is there a Swan in your bathtub?”
“Because your mother thinks she’s funny, but the jokes on her, I can play just as dirty,” and she has that scary look on her face that never means anything good.
“Mom…” Henry drawls and Regina turns to look at him then.
“Don’t worry, dear, I won’t hurt her.”
Henry’s not sure what’s scarier, the look on his moms face or the look on his Ma’s later that night when she storms into the house in a frilly pink dress and too much makeup…it’s so gaudy he knows it’s not supposed to be that way…
“Regina!” She screeches and mom is smirking and yeah…this is probably the weirdest day of his life. “Take it off!”
Regina starts laughing then, “I’ll get rid of that when you get the bird out of my bathtub.”
“Fine!” She growls, and then snaps her fingers, “Done, see,” And she conjured up a hand mirror to that looked into Regina’s now empty bathroom.
“Thank you,” Regina says and turns to walk away, flicking her wrist indifferently, Emma’s clothes back to the god-awful black number.
Emma looks at him then, “Why didn’t you warn me she was up to something!” she hissed at the boy and he shrugged.
“You put a wild animal in her bathtub, Ma, what did you think would happen?”
Emma huffs, disappearing a second later.
“Adults,” Henry mutters to himself, rolling his eyes and heading up to his room…to find one of the chickens, “Dammit, Janie, how’d you get up here? You know how mom feels about you in the house.” He hissed at the bird, scooping her up. “If we get caught I can’t promise you’ll make it to tomorrow.”
Janie clucked once and then stayed very quiet as the boy snuck her out of the house and back into the backyard.
VIII. Eight Fairies a Milking.
“You have got to be fucking kidding me!?” Regina cussed as she pulled up outside town hall to see eight cows being milked in the middle of the courtyard by eight fairies.
She let out a long sigh, letting her head fall until it connected with her steering wheel, fingers white with how tight her grip had gotten on it, the small swan ring digging into her finger…yes, she was wearing it…it doesn’t mean anything, you know, besides the fact that she was madly in love with the insufferable blonde and wore the sorta kinda engagement ring all night again. After a few steadying breaths, she pushed open her car door, storming toward the crowd.
“What in the hell do you think you’re doing!? This is town hall, not a farm!” Astrid turned and smiled widely at her and she sent her a glare before turning her attention to Tinkerbelle, “You too, Tink?”
The blonde fairy laughed, shooting milk into the metal bucked under her cow, “I’ve learnt saying no to the Dark One doesn’t necessarily end well…I mean ask blue, she’s still being followed by a rain cloud for refusing to apologize to like, everyone in existence,” She looked at the other fairies around her and winced, “No offence.”
“It’s okay!” Astrid chirped before giggling happily when she got the milk flowing.
“Right…so this is another of Ms. Swan’s gifts …what is with her and farm life? I enjoyed the jewelry way more.”
About half the fairies looked at her with wide eyes while another half started snickering.
“Well, if you wouldn’t mind moving on? This is a workplace after all.”
“Sorry, can’t Emma said we gotta stay until the cows start getting angry.”
She growled, stepping closer until she was looming over Tink perched on her stool, “I’m going to make this easy for you, okay? You either leave or I start roasting fairies…I can’t remember, are your wings flammable?”
She heard a couple squeak in horror and her hard look turned a little creepy as she got that proud smirk on her face that reminded all of them just who she was.
“Sorry, Regina, we signed a contract, if we leave early we’re dead.”
“If you don’t leave now you’re dead!”
Tink laughed, shifting on her stool to look up at Regina, patting the cow’s side, “You can’t hurt us. Emma protected us like everything else. Just go inside, work, we’ll probably be gone by noon.”
Regina growled, “I can’t believe you’re helping her! I thought we put the past behind us!”
“We did,” Tink smiled at her before turning back to her cow, “Okay, Bessy, back to work.”
Regina sent them all dirty looks before teleporting into her office, dropping onto one of the couches in her office before burying her head in her hands, “I’m getting tired of these games, Ms. Swan.”
“They’re not games,” Came Emma’s voice from where she knew the doves were.
“Then what are they?”
“Emma, please, stop this, there are eight cows being milked in front of town hall! And I thought the birds were annoying…”
“The plan wasn’t to annoy you.”
“Then what was it?” Regina turned on the couch to look up at Emma who was feeding one of the doves from her hand.
“Have you named them yet?”
Emma rolled her eyes, “The doves, have you given them names?”
Emma smiled at that, “What are they?”
“Well, you’re holding Mary Margaret and David is sitting on his eggs, depending on the gender I’m thinking I’ll name the babies Emma and Neal and if it’s another girl or two boys I have other ideas.”
“You are horrible,” Emma snickered, “Do you know how hard it was to get these things? This would all have probably been impossible if I weren’t the Dark One.”
“Mmm, and getting people to cooperate with you would be even more of a struggle.”
“Hey, I was also the saviour and their princess, they’d do anything I ask, anyway half the fairies out there didn’t even need to be threatened.”
Regina rolled her eyes, standing from the couch, “The fearsome Dark One, pouting about stature…never thought I’d see the day.”
“Why are you here?”
Emma frowned, putting Mary Margaret back in the cage and shutting the door, “You seemed upset.”
Regina breathed out a laugh, “And to think I thought you didn’t care how I was feeling.”
Emma took a step toward her, face surprisingly soft with the dark edges the Dark One curse had given her, “I always care about how you’re feeling, don’t you know, Regina? You’re my greatest weakness.”
And no, she didn’t know and she knew by the look on her face it was obvious because she couldn’t stop her mouth from falling open, “What about Henry?” she husked after a few seconds, eyes studying Emma’s face before locking on her eyes, the only thing that hasn’t changed since she sacrificed herself for her.
Emma shrugged, “I know you’ll always protect him…even if it means with your life which just makes me worry about you more cause I couldn’t imagine my life without your snarky comments.”
“No, don’t say anything, I just needed you to understand that you’re important to me,” Regina nodded, “I see you’re wearing the ring.”
Regina rolled her eyes, “I told you I loved them.”
Emma nodded, stepping forward and taking Regina’s hand with the swan ring on it, looking down at it with this soft smile that had Regina’s heart doing that thing again while everything was suddenly very warm. “I know,” And then she was placing a kiss to her knuckle, “See you tomorrow, Regina.” She said before disappearing.
“Oh gods, what’s tomorrow!?” she asked the doves preening each other, “You’re both as disgustingly sweet as your namesakes.”
David cooed and she growled before poofing to her vault to hide out for the day.
IX. Nine Drummers Drumming Really Poorly.
It was sometime around lunch when her office door opened and in walked Snow and David with drums around there neck and before she could question them in walked all seven dwarves with identical drums.
“What is going on here?” but there was no answer, they only started drumming and well, it sounded similar to when Henry banged on anything and everything as a child…just noise, not even music they were completely out of sync and she’s pretty sure at least one of them was trying for the wedding march and…she’ll kill her.
With a heavy sigh, she pulled out her phone texting Emma, “Why exactly are your parents and the 7 dwarves playing really bad drums in my office?”
“How bad is really bad?” comes Emma’s response a few seconds later.
Regina shakes her head, grimacing as the band of toddlers get shockingly louder and worse…is that the funeral march? She pulls up the video app and starts recording, stopping the video after a few seconds and linking it to her text to Emma which says, “What? You’ve given up spying?”
“Would you believe me if I told you they’ve been practising for days and this is actually an improvement?”
Regina chuckled quietly, looking at the group before her and wincing again cause yes, that was the funeral march and the wedding march mixed with this weird drum roll and, “You can tell them they can leave, they promised me they had it…I’m sorry, also tell whoever is playing the funeral march to shove it up their ass.”
Regina sighed, looking at the group, yup, it was Grumpy, what did Emma expect when she asked him to come play drums in her office? Now, she couldn’t figure out who was playing the wedding march though… “Alright folks, Emma says you are dismissed.”
Snow pouted, playing stopping and there goes the wedding march, of course, it was her, “What do you mean? We barely got started.”
“Oh god, you had more planned?” Regina groaned, running her hand through her hair before glaring at them, “You can go because believe it or not the Dark One doesn’t even want to put me through this sort of torture for much longer.”
Snow pouted, “Don’t call her that.”
Regina’s head tilted, “Why not, it’s who she is, is it not?”
“Yes but you’re her –” Snow stopped suddenly, eyes wide and Charming was glaring toward her and dammit would Leroy stop already!?
“I’m her what?”
Regina frowned, that definitely wasn’t it; Ruby called her the Dark One in front of Snow just a few days ago. “Is that so?”
Snow nodded, eyes still wide in panic, “Yes, as her friend you should not call her–”
“By her title?” Regina cut off, rolling her eyes, “Would you please stop playing? You’re giving me a migraine and disturbing David and Mary Margaret.”
The two blinked, “We’re fine.”
“Not you, the doves.” Regina pointed toward the cage where the doves were cooing unhappily.
“You named your doves after us?”
Oh god, Snow looked about to cry…wonderful. “Pull yourself together, Snow. It’s just because they’re as disgustingly in love as you idiots,” Snow pouted. “Now would you please leave my office, Emma has dismissed you and I’m about two seconds away from taking drastic measures if Leroy doesn’t stop playing the damn funeral march!”
They all turned to look at the dwarf who simply shrugged, “Sorry, sister, it’s all I know.”
Regina groaned, pointing toward her door, “Go, now,” Blissfully the drumming had stopped but they were all still staring at her, “What now?”
“Is that an engagement ring?”
Crap. Did she not take it off this morning? Henry didn’t say anything? “No.”
“It looks like one.”
She’s going to kill everyone in this godforsaken town, screw redemption, she’s burning it all down…except for Henry, Henry is safe…although she will be having a talk with him about not mentioning the giant rock on her finger this morning. “Out. Now!” she roared and the dwarves scurried and David stood by the door while Snow smirked at her but it wasn’t long before they followed after the dwarves. It might be because she was looking more like the Evil Queen in that moment then she has in a while or maybe it was the ball of fire lighting up her hand…it was probably both now that she thinks about it.
She turned to look at the doves, “I like you both better.”
X. Ten Pipers Piping to the Hospital if They Don’t Cut it Out.
It was a peaceful day, a really peaceful day, no gifts, no Snow White…it was looking up and then…well, can we go back to the birds?
“Oh no, out! I will not have this again!” she shoots up from her desk, pointing at the group of people that just strolled into her office playing on their little pipes…“I’m not staying for this,” She stated, standing from her chair and pushing past them, she makes it a few steps down the hall before she realizes they’re following her, “Stop following me, do you know who I am!?” they keep playing…the nerve.
“Emma!” She yells toward the roof hoping maybe she’ll do her a favour, nothing.
She storms her way back into her office, picking up her phone and texting the damn woman, “I swear, Ms. Swan if you don’t remove these people from my office I’ll shove their pipes where the sun don’t shine.”
Emma appears in front of her, frowning, “That’s disgusting, you’d really wanna go there?”
“I have magic, dear. I don’t actually have to do it with my own hands.” She has that frightening look on her face again and Emma gulps because she has all of Gold’s memories and she knows just where that look leads, she waves her hand, the group disappearing in a grey cloud of smoke, “You’re no fun,” And then so does Emma.
“What the hell happened in Camelot for me to deserve such torture!?”
“Well, you tortured me in that red dress for 6 weeks so this is just fair.”
And she lost it, she dropped into her chair and laughed for way too long because this was all insane and it was never going to end and…dammit.
XI. Eleven “Ladies” Dancing.
It was a budget meeting, a budget meeting! And then there were a bunch of scantily clad women -remind her to kill Ruby later- strutting into the conference room with a boom box playing Christmas Tree by Lady Gaga…shut up, everyone has their guilty pleasures, hers just happens to be listening to Lady Gaga in her study in the middle of the night and, she’s a good musician, okay!? But that’s not the point, the point is they’re dancing…and not nice dancing, dirty dancing, swaying their hips and why are they looking at her like that? Ruby, no, don’t you dare!
“I will kill you,” She hisses and Ruby chuckles pushing her chair away from the table.
“Just enjoy the show, your majesty.”
Regina’s eyes bug out of her head when five of the girls climb up on the table in much less clothing, “If you scuff my table I will drag you back her to polish it!” they all laughed in a way that wasn’t appropriate for the number of people in here…how is she going to explain eleven strippers showing up to town hall and, giving her a lap dance!? “Ms. Lucas!” She yelped when the werewolf’s hands landed on her legs. “Get your hands off me this instant!”
She laughed and leaned in close, whispering in her ear, “Bet you’d enjoy it if I were Emma.”
No way! She yanked herself as far back as she could to lock eyes with the woman and… “Ms. Swan, why are you using a glamour to turn yourself into the wolf?”
She pouted, “I thought it’d be fun…” And then she was herself but still in the skimpy outfit and, her heart wasn’t doing that thing again and her stomach didn’t drop and twist in arousal and she’s going to kill her.
“I will kill you if you don’t get these women out of here, I’m trying to work, Ms. Swan.”
Emma laughed, hands running over her own sides as she shimmied her hips, “What your majesty doesn’t want her subject to see her turned on.”
“I am not…” although anything else she was going to say died in her mouth when her eyes followed Emma’s hands to her breasts and she very obviously gulped hands in a death grip on the arms of her chair, “This isn’t funny.”
Emma dropped into her lap, crossing her legs as her finger wandered along the exposed skin of her blouse causing goosebumps to form in their wake, “I know, it’s the least funniest thing so far,” Her face was too close, their lips almost touching and oh god…what has this woman done to her!?
“Emma…please, stop this,” and Emma sighed, flicking her wrist that was draped over her shoulder and the room was suddenly very quiet and Emma was fully dressed, “Thank you.”
Although she didn’t actually move from her spot and that finger was still dancing over her skin and…she’s royally screwed.
“You’re also really sexy when you’re flustered, you know that?” Regina huffed, trying to pull herself together, to get up the strength to push the woman from her lap except her hands betrayed her and her fingers ghosted along Emma’s back and skidded across her knee…she was a goner.
“See you tomorrow,” she breathed into her ear and suddenly she was gone and the people from the budget meeting were all back in their chairs looking as confused and flustered as she must.
“Meeting adjourned, we’ll finish this tomorrow, hopefully.” And then she too disappeared in her own puff of smoke and right into her vault where she screamed at the top of her lungs and blew something up…a few somethings really. “Please tell me this is over!?”
Wait, was Emma always Ruby? If she was that means she gave her the third ring in the diner…
XII. Twelve Lords a Leaping in Tights…Why Does it Have to Be Tights!?
She should have expected this after yesterday but she was really hoping it was over, she really was but it will never end, will it? It’s been twelve days of this bullshit and it hasn’t gotten any better and now she was living a literal nightmare as she watched a bunch of old men leap through the diner in tights and, who would agree to this!? Can she have the strippers back? They at least looked better…she’ll gladly take the bird shit covered kitchen back right about now…oh god! Did they never hear of jock straps!?
She buried her head in her hands because that’s the only way she’ll survive this…as long as she doesn’t look at all the lords leaping around the room…and try not to focus on how she can feel them when they jump by her…why is this happening to her!?
“I can’t take it anymore!” She hollered and the room fell instantly quiet and still and then she felt movement again and she looked up from her spot at the counter to Granny’s horrified face at the sight of Moe French leaping and giggling as he landed, “I’m so sorry, Granny, Emma has been doing things like this for almost two weeks and I was really hoping considering it’s Christmas tomorrow maybe she’d well…I’ve had twelve days of this and yesterday she had stripers show up at town hall and,” She sighed and Granny patted her arm.
“Loving the Dark One is a tricky game, indeed,” then she pulled out her crossbow and pointed it at the twelve men, “You will evacuate my establishment this instant or I will start shooting,” they scattered.
“It’s the least I could do, now you should probably go have a talk with the Dark One before this starts all over again.”
“What’s that supposed to mean?”
Granny shook her head and retreated into the kitchen to prepare someone’s lunch.
Regina groaned, talking to Emma is exactly what she’s going to do.
By the time she got to Emma’s house she was fuming again, how dare she embarrass her like this! She was out there trying to help the woman and all she was doing is covering her property in farm animals and forcing people to perform or milk cows and…she may be the Dark One but she was acting like a teenage prankster!
She was so angry she didn’t even register that she just walked into the woman’s house with no problem, she didn’t even realize what was happening until she was standing in the foyer looking around with wide eyes.
“Good afternoon, Regina, what do I owe this pleasure? Finally, figure it out?” Regina blinked once, twice and then she was storming toward the smirking woman and jabbing her in the chest with her finger. “Ow!” Emma whined and Regina poked her again and didn’t stop as she ranted.
“Ms. Swan…I’ve had it up to here,” Her other arm shot up over her head to emphasize her point, “with this thing! This is the last straw! First I have to explain why strippers showed up yesterday, but now I had to explain to Granny why Belle's father and every other old man just leaped through the diner in a bad impression of a ballerina….Tights, Ms. Swan! They were wearing tights! I will never get this image from my mind!”
Emma grabbed the hand poking her, holding it against her chest making Regina’s eyes shoot down to it then back at Emma to glare, trying to force her hand out of her grip, “Would you cut it out! I haven’t exactly been subtle! Everyone knows this song, Regina! Everyone!”
“Song? What song!? What the hell are you going on about, Ms. Swan!?”
“Oh my god! I can’t believe I actually love someone as maddening as you! This fucking song, Regina!” She snapped the fingers of her free hand and Twelve Days of Christmas started playing through the house, “it was a simple plan, you should have gotten it by day two, I didn’t think I’d actually have to go out and find lords to leap around or teach people to play the fucking drums!”
Regina was trying to wrap her head around everything, Emma said she loved her, there was a Christmas song playing about gifts to true loves and Emma was very angry… “What is going on?”
“Oh for the love of god!” Emma hollered, throwing her hands up in the air and taking a few steps away to pace before suddenly spinning around, finger pointed at her, “Henry didn’t wake you!”
“What?” Is this about the sleeping curse? If Henry didn’t wake me who…oh, oh… “Oh…” Very eloquent, Regina, maybe you can manage another, oh to really top it off! “You woke me? You’re my true love?”
“Fin-a-fucking-ly!” Emma exclaimed, “Yes, I am, I fucking kissed you and woke you up and in my unbelievable state of massive gay panic I said it was Henry and then everything happened and you were about to be turned into the Dark One and I couldn’t let it happen so I took it on and, and then you fell into Robin’s arms and then you begged me to save him and Jesus, Regina!”
“No, shut up! I’ve been wanting to say this for a month, heck years! I love you, Regina Mills, I love every twisted maddening part of you! I love how much you love our soon, and how you secretly love my parents, and how you crinkle your nose in that cute little way when you smile and the way your brows furrow when you’re sad or frustrated or like right now when you’re trying to figure something out and, god, Regina I love that vein in your forehead that pops when you’re angry! I love the hoity way you sometimes speak and your twisted sense of humour,” Emma sucked in a breath, taking a step toward her. “I love how in Camelot you tried to push me to be open because you knew something was bugging me, and how you look at me when I do magic…yeah, I saw it…and I love how it feels when our magic combines, like safety and home…it feels like you; and I never want to be away from you, because when you’re near I feel it in all of me, I can feel your presence tingling my skin and making my heart quicken and those damn butterflies to swarm and...I love you, Regina, all of you and I want to spend the rest of my life making sure you get your happy ending like I promised all those months ago.”
“Emma…” She felt the tears fall from her eyes and a second later Emma’s hands were on her cheeks, thumbs wiping away her tears and she may be trying to look like an all-powerful being but all Regina could see was her Emma in those eyes, “yes.”
“Yes?” Emma was really confused, what was she saying yes to, what kind of answer was yes? She was expecting an ‘I love you too’, or maybe a ‘no’, or a ‘how dare you’ but, yes? What is that supposed to mean?
Regina had this wide smile on her face that's crinkling her eyes and her nose and Emma’s heart skipped and jumped in her chest.
“I will spend the rest of my life with you, I choose you, darkness and all I will always choose you. I love you, Emma, every annoying part of you.” She chuckled to herself hand covering the one on her cheek, “every stupidly heroic, childish part. I love your godawful taste in food and clothing, I love how you love our son, I love that you have always understood me, how even when we hated each other I somehow felt connected to you. I love you, Emma Swan, not the saviour or the princess just you, every maddening, insufferable, challenging, hilarious part because you’re also one of the most caring people I know, you always make me feel loved and safe and when you’re near I don’t feel as alone.”
She took a step closer, barely an inch separating them as she reached out her hand to caress Emma’s cheek, “I love the way you pout like a toddler, and bicker with our son, I love how you would do anything for him, for me…for your family.”
Emma rolled her eyes, “I pout like a toddler? Have you seen yourself when you don’t get your way?”
“Yes, well, I rarely don’t get my way.”
Emma chuckled, “I know.”
Regina laughed too, dropping her forehead to Emma’s, “So it’s a yes, a yes to a life with you by my side, a yes to pop tarts in my cupboard and cookie crumbs on my couch. It’s a yes to the bickering and the definite disagreements, to spending everyday with you in my arms, to seeing that hideous red jacket I love so much in my closet next to all my suits and your jeans in a heap on my floor because I’ve seen your bedroom and I know how you do things.” Emma breathed out an unsteady laughed, fingers tangling in Regina’s hair as she held her closer while her own tears fell. “I’m saying yes to a lifetime with your family, to your horrible gifts and cheesy taste because who uses a Christmas song to try and tell someone they are their true love? I’m saying yes to a lifetime with you, Emma Swan because a life without you is something I never want to imagine because you too are my greatest weakness.”
“Next to Henry. And I’m sorry, you did give me one of the best gifts, our son.”
“And the rings, you loved the rings,” Emma said through a wet smile.
“I love the rings.”
Emma laughed happily, “Can I kiss you now?”
Emma chuckled and locked their lips together in a slow kiss, reveling in the feel of Regina’s hands at the back of her neck holding her close, in the feel of silky hair tangled in her fingers and the love oozing into her, pushing out the darkness and filling her with light and love, she held on tightly, not pulling from the kiss as she heard Rumple screaming about self-preservation and darkness and power, she held on because she knew this would happen, and she wasn’t going to fight loving this woman.
Tears mingled in their kiss making it taste salty and wet but she didn’t pull away, she couldn’t pull away, and when true loves kiss tried to push them apart she just held on tighter, pulling Emma closer as hair fell from her bun and she lost a good six inches of height she just kept holding on because this was them and it was perfect and they were true loves and fuck fairy dust, because Emma was her happy ending, no matter what.
Emma laughed into the kiss and Regina took that moment to deepen it and Emma didn’t care about broken curses and she’ll return their memories later, yeah but right now Regina was in her arms kissing her like that and she was not going to break it…at least not until her lungs were burning from the need of proper air. And sadly it did come not long later and they stood, swaying in place with one of Emma’s hands on Regina’s ass and Regina’s hands tangled so thoroughly in her hair they might need help freeing them but she wasn’t going to argue.
“Are we engaged now? Because like, that sorta was an engagement ring and you just said yes…”
Regina laughed happily, her face free of every worry as she threw her head back, “I don’t know, maybe you should ask properly this time?”
Emma couldn’t help it, Regina was so beautiful with kiss-swollen lips and mused hair and smudged lipstick and just…she kissed her again, silencing her laughter as they fell into each other again and it was minutes, hours later? Emma’s not sure all she knows is she’s out of breath and Regina has her pressed against a wall and they’re gasping for breaths as Regina’s head is tucked into her shoulder. She wraps her arms more securely around her waist, holding her close and enjoying the feel of their bodies pressed together for a little while longer before she pushes Regina back, walking her so they’re away from the wall, “Stay there.”
And she pouts and she’s so perfect, and adorable Emma has to kiss her one more time but she knows, knows if she does she’ll get lost in her again but she has to kiss that pout from those lips and so she does, she does and she forces them apart a moment later when Regina’s hands are starting to wander again and she’s trying to deepen the kiss once more. “Behave,” She warns and Regina’s smirking now and she can handle smirking…maybe, “Stop looking at me like that,” She whines and she really can’t.
“Just like you, you’re too incredibly hot for my own good, I’m trying to do something here.”
Regina smiles goofily at her, biting the inside of her cheek as she looks at the blonde with her normal hair and skinny jeans and her leather jacket on the floor…right, she threw that off her…
“No, stop,” Emma warns making her chuckle before she focuses back on Emma who is holding a red velvet ring box and yeah, she gasps like she did when she first saw the ring. “I’m doing this now, okay?”
She nods because she never thought she would be getting married again, ever, but when she saw that ring her mind screamed yes and it hasn’t stopped screaming yes and picturing Emma in a white suite and…they haven’t even been on a date yet, they’re doing this so backwards.
Emma drops to her knee and Regina tries not to laugh when she wobbles slightly, “Shut up, I’m trying to be romantic here,” She nods again, taking a slight step closer to Emma, “Okay, Regina Mills, will you do the great honour of marrying me…someday?”
Regina laughed, smiling at her clumsy idiot, who fumbled and almost dropped the box as she tried to pull the ring out, “Yes,” And she was laughing and smiling so widely she must look out of her mind but it all stopped as Emma took her hand as gently as she did the other day, looking at the little crown on her pointer finger and kissing it before pulling back and slipping the ring on her finger, kissing that too and then every knuckle, and Regina was rightfully turned into mush as Emma turned her hand over, placing a kiss in the center of her palm. “I love you.”
Emma smiled brightly at her, “I love you too, future Mrs. Swan-Mills.”
She chuckled, pulling Emma back up to her to wrap her in her arms, “Swan-Mills, huh? How do you know I won’t make you take my name?”
Emma smiled into her neck, kissing the junction between her neck and shoulder, “Because you know how important names and identities are.”
“Mmm, right.” She hummed relaxing into her, “What do you say, future Mrs. Swan-Mills about celebrating our future wedding?”
Emma laughed pulling back to connect their lips again, “I can never say no to a celebration.”
Regina pulled back that wicked grin on her face, “Oh good, I was thinking we could find the lords and your parents and get them to perform, you know since you missed it.”
“You wouldn’t dare.”
“Wouldn’t I? You put me through hell, Ms. Swan.”
Emma was the one pouting this time, “But, I love you.”
“And I you. Now, I think the pipers would also be happy to join us as well, maybe the fairies can make you some ice cream with all that milk you made them collect…”
Regina’s grin widened and she leaned forward to peck Emma’s lips, “I know, but you still love me.”
“That I do…now about that celebration,”
“Right! Let’s go, we have a lot of planning to do and I’d like to–” Emma put her finger over her lips to silence her and their eyes locked in an instant.
“Or, we could have our own celebration by ourselves before Snow is constantly on our case about wedding plans?”
“No, I like my idea better,” Regina spoke, lips moving against Emma’s finger and then she decided to screw payback, screwing the blonde would be so much more fun, and their lips were on each other in an instant and they were fumbling and stumbling back until Emma had her pinned against the wall and her hands were up her shirt and Regina’s legs were around her waist and, yeah, this was much better, “I love you.”
“I love you too,” Emma husked against her neck and she hummed and then well, things got heated very fast…and they were just about to...
“Uh, if you wouldn’t mind we’re still trapped down here!” came a yell from a door off to the side and Emma was looking guiltily at her.
“What did you do?”
“Right…well, I might have Gold and Merida locked in my basement along with Excalibur…also, I might have all your guys’ memories in dream catchers in my garage…”
“So, uh, I guess we should let them out?”
Regina breathed out a laugh, head lulling against the wall before she unwrapped legs from around Emma and let them drop to the floor, “Yes, and give us our memories back, I’d like to remember that moment you mentioned about me looking at you when you did magic…”
Emma smirked, pecking her lips, “Maybe we should freshen up a bit, your makeup is ruined and I’m sure I have lipstick all over my neck.”
Regina smirked, “That you do,” and then she flicked her wrist and they looked as good as new, “Let’s go release your prisoners, dear.”
“Not something you thought you’d be having to say to me, huh?”
Regina rolled her eyes as they walked toward the door, Emma waving her hand in front of it to get it to open before they headed down the stairs and to see the two people chained up, “Apologies, Ms. Swan didn’t mention she had prisoners in her basement.”
“Yeah, yeah just get me out of here, I’m tired of listening to him snivel like a baby.”
I will not laugh, I will not take pleasure in this, I will not laugh. She told herself but she actually had to bite hard on her cheek to keep herself together at the sight of the former Dark One, well, snivelling.
Emma waved her hand and released them but Gold was still cowering on the floor, “Right, your cane,” Emma said and flicked her wrist to retrieve the cane and hand it to him, “Sorry about this.”
Regina smiled softly at her, reaching out and running her hand over her back, “It’s okay, dear, we all have moments of hostage taking, ask your parents, they took us all hostage at some point, well, maybe not Merida.”
Emma rolled her eyes, “You were prisoners because you tried and did kill thousands.”
Regina shrugged, “Semantics, my dear.”
Emma rolled her eyes again, helping Gold up, “So I guess we should probably finish cleaning up my mess, huh?”
“Yes, we probably should.”
Emma sighed, looking rather disappointed and she led Gold toward the stairs.
“Sorry for interrupting your moment but I couldn’t take another moment with that man.”
Regina smirked, shaking her head at the warrior, “I completely understand, dear.”
Turns out they had a lot of things to clean up…sure they took care of Blue’s storm cloud last but well, they had more important things to do after all and it wasn’t until nearly the next morning when they fixed the last thing…and Emma tried to wrangle the chickens she let in the house while she and Henry laughed because...Karma.
But once they were done they all crashed for the night and then it was Christmas morning and everything was wild and hectic and family was everywhere and somehow nobody had noticed her ring yet and maybe it’s because most of them already saw her wearing it the other day and…then she and Emma were bickering over Christmas dinner and the blonde was chuckling in her brand new Christmas sweater from Snow and it was hideous and somehow also the cutest thing on her…but she’s losing her train of thought again. Right so Emma is in that horrible reindeer sweater with a light up nose, sitting on her kitchen counter laughing as Twelve Days of Christmas plays from the radio and well, she can’t help it and suddenly she’s standing between Emma’s legs which are wrapped around her while they makeout like teenagers and there’s flour on Emma’s cheeks and in her hair from her hands and the food will probably burn soon but Emma is there and Emma…just Emma.
“Oh! I’m sorry!” Comes Snow’s startled voice which sends Regina flying to the other side of the kitchen as she tries to pretend she’s not blushing but Emma is almost as red as her leather jacket or the nose of her reindeer and her heart feels full.
“No, it’s okay, Snow, that was highly inappropriate.” She says, straightening her shirt because Emma has started getting more handsy since yesterday.
Snow waved her off, “I just came to check on dinner, I thought I smelt something burning.”
“Shit!” Regina curses, turning to look at the seared vegetables, “Dammit, Swan, this is all your fault!”
“You kissed me!” Emma protested, leaping off the counter to look into the pan from over her shoulder.
“Yes, well you were so cute I couldn’t help it…”
Emma was grinning, even if she couldn’t see it she knew it especially as Emma wrapped her arms around her waist and nuzzled into her neck. “Yeah, you can’t keep your hands off of me.”
“Yes, well neither can you. Or do I have to remind you about this morning?”
Snow coughed and when they both looked at her she was redder than Emma was a few moments ago, “Well, if you have this covered…” and she backed out of the room, bumping into the doorframe making the new couple laugh.
“So, can you save it?”
“If I didn’t have magic, definitely not but since I do…” She trailed off, fixing the vegetables as she leaned her body back into Emma, “That just leaves the turkey which should be done in about an hour…”
Emma spun her around a second later, connecting their lips in a heated kiss, turning them to press Regina against the counter.
“Coming in, ladies, I hope you’re decent.”
Emma groaned, dropping her forehead to rest against Regina’s, “Why did we invite my parents again?”
Regina chuckled, “It’s fine, David!”
And the man strut in, baby in his arms, “Neal is hungry so I thought I’d warm him a bottle,” He informs them, trying not to focus on the women still curled around each other.
“Of course,” Regina pulled away, “we’re just waiting for the turkey anyway.”
David nodded, moving to the stove.
“Oh god, Regina! Our anniversary is Christmas Eve!”
Regina pecked her lips, “It was your plan, dear, remember?”
Emma groaned, dropping to tuck her head into Regina’s neck, pulling her tightly back into her arms again, “We’re getting married as far away from a holiday as we can.”
Regina breathed out a laugh, rubbing Emma’s back, “Of course, I was thinking sometime in the spring,” Both completely forgetting about David’s presence or the fact that his back was almost touching Emma’s and that he could definitely hear them.
“I like the spring…you can wear a strappy dress.”
Regina laughed joyously, “Do you ever get your mind out of the gutter?”
“Never,” She stated before nipping the skin of her shoulder making Regina gasp.
And David to re-announce his presence, “Still here, ladies.”
“Sorry, dad.” Emma blushed.
“It’s alright, but you better announce this engagement tonight because you are very poor at keeping it a secret…even if we were already suspicious considering the rock Regina is sporting.”
Emma blushed, turning to face her dad, “Right, sorry…”
“Why? I’m happy for both of you and your mother will be ecstatic, she hasn’t stopped talking about it since she saw the ring on Regina’s finger the other day.”
Emma grinned, “Thanks, dad.”
He grinned widely at them both, “Now, take your bother, it’s hard preparing a bottle with him squirming.”
Emma grimaced, taking her brother from her father and leaning against the counter next to Regina who let her head fall onto Emma’s shoulder after a few moments. “Weren’t you making a pie?”
“Crap,” She hissed, spinning around to see the pie crust forgotten on the counter, “Ah, screw it,” and then she flicked her wrist and it was cooked and cooling on the counter, “I’m never going to get anything done with you around, am I?”
Emma grinned, leaning forward to kiss her cheek, “I can think of a few things you can manage to finish.”
David started choking on his own spit, Regina was smiling at her wickedly and Emma was blushing because she forgot about her father again.
“Give me your brother,” He grumbled, taking the baby and the warm bottle as he made a hasty retreat.
“You’re a bad influence on me.”
Regina smirked, kissing her cheek before she nudged the blonde with her hip, “Go spend time with the family, I’m going to baste the turkey then I’ll be right out.”
“Okay…” Emma pouted making Regina roll her eyes, “Kiss for the road?”
She rolled them again before she turned and kissed Emma soundly, “Go.”
Regina swatted her ass as she left, making the blonde yelp and turn to her with a pout. “Be good.”
And then Emma was out of the kitchen and she got to work, making sure she didn’t ruin the turkey next and she was out in the living room about 10 minutes later announcing dinner was done.
“Already?” Emma asked, looking at her from over the couch, Henry leaning into her side as they watched the Grinch.
“Yes, the turkey didn’t need as long as I thought so everyone sit down. David, if you can help me carve the turkey?”
“Sure,” He passed Neal off to his wife before standing and following Regina into the kitchen.
It was quiet for a few seconds before he spoke up, “I was thinking, about the wedding, and who might walk you down the aisle,” he paused when her head spun to look at him, “I’d be honoured to walk you down too if you wanted.”
Regina’s face softened into a warm smile and she reached out her hand to squeeze David’s forearm, “That’s very sweet of you, Charming. But I was thinking I’d ask Henry.”
The man broke into a smile so much like his daughters it warmed her heart, “Oh, that’s a great idea! He’d love that, walking his mom down the aisle.”
“I thought he might.”
“Have you told him yet?”
She let the spoon fall in the serving bowl as she turned more fully to face the man, “Not yet, it’s been so busy since the curse broke, reversing all of Emma’s spells, and then Christmas…”
He nodded, going back to carving the turkey, “I understand, you can announce it tonight, he and Snow will be so happy, Henry was so upset when Emma didn’t let him be a piper.”
“So he was in on it…”
David laughed, “Yeah, after the chickens showed up he clued in and well, we all knew you both were true love's so when Emma started re-enacting a Christmas song we all volunteered to help out…although we didn’t know about the strippers until after.”
Regina rolled her eyes, “May we never talk of the last few days again?”
“Deal,” David agreed with a laugh, both getting back to work at plating the dinner and it wasn’t long until they were all seated around the table eating and laughing and it was somewhere around desert that Emma’s hand found hers under the table and her thumb played with the ring.
She looked over at her and found her smiling at something Henry said and her heart was so full of love she leaned over and kissed Emma’s cheek, whispering in her ear, “Want to tell them now?”
Emma looked at her with a wide smile, squeezing her hand as she turned back to their family, “So, we kind of have something we’d like to tell you guys.”
Snow put down her fork, focusing on them and David was smirking as Henry looked at them with a mouth full of pie and whip cream on his upper lip.
“Emma and I we’re…” their eyes locked, smiles widening and they pulled their hands out from under the table, Emma finishing for her.
“We’re engaged,” Snow started squealing and she pulled David into a hug as Henry smiled around his mouthful of food while he watched his Ma bring his mom's ring covered hand to her lips and place a kiss to it, “I mean, we probably won’t get married super soon but well, it’s been 4 years in the making…”
Snow was running across the table and pulling Emma into a bone-crushing hug and David stood, walking over to Regina and hugging her, kissing the top of her head like a father would before he moved to join the family hug, doing the same with Emma as she laughed happily in the hold.
Regina’s eyes moved to look for Henry and found him grinning widely at her.
“We did it, mom, we found your happy ending!” And then he was wrapping her in a hug and she wanted to cry…and she did.
“We did,” She pulled back to smile at him, hands clutching his cheeks lovingly, “And I was wondering, when we do get married if you would walk me down the aisle?”
Henry’s smile got wider, “It'd be my honour, mom,” and he pulled her into another tight hug, “I love you,” He said into her neck, when did he get this tall?
“I love you too, my little prince.”
And before they could respond Emma was crashing into their sides kissing the side of Henry’s head and then Regina’s, “I love you guys.”
Henry laughed, freeing an arm to wrap around her as well, “I’m so happy for you guys.”
“Good,” came Emma’s reply making the two Mills’ laugh and then gasp as Snow and Charming joined in on the family hug.
“We love you,” They said at once and Regina and Emma were so full of love they both smiled as tears fell from their eyes, heads resting against each other's.
And sure it was two years before they got married one spring afternoon in their backyard (the chickens were in a coop), Zelena is Regina’s maid of honour and her and Robin’s daughter as their flower girl, Neal the ring bearer, it was simple and beautiful and the daughter they adopted earlier that year was in Snow’s arms as she stood next to Emma as the ever proud mother of the bride/maid of honour which had Ruby bickering for weeks but ultimately she was happy as one of Emma’s bridesmaids while Tink was one of Regina’s. It was perfect and everything they could have ever imagined, just them and their family and Henry was standing almost as tall as David now and, life was truly perfect that day. And as they kissed the turtle doves were let free, flying right to land on Regina’s shoulders and making her laugh into the kiss because all the birds we’re ridiculously attached to her.
“If they shit on my dress, Mrs. Swan-Mills.”
“Don’t worry, I’ll take it off for you,” Was Emma’s ever inappropriate comeback that had them sharing another kiss as everyone cheered and Snow cried and Zelena and everyone else threw birdseed because rice wasn’t good for the birds.
And they’d never been so happy in their lives.