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The Aftermath

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Regina walked to guest room where Emma was staying. They decided it would best for Henry if they all stayed together for the time being. Only Emma hadn’t once left her room since she arrived. Regina knocked on the door and walked in. Emma sat on the bed staring at her hands in horror. 

“He shouldn’t have seen that.” It was whispered. Regina strained to hear it.

“Emma.” She reached for her, but Emma didn’t react. Didn’t even acknowledge her.

“The things I said to him. How could I-!?”

“Emma!” She grabbed hold of her shoulders and gave a little shake. 

“No. No! I’m supposed to be the Savior! The product of true love.” She spat it out. “What I did today was the work of a monster!”

Regina sighed. “And what? I enjoyed watching my son see me for who I truly am?” She’s tired of this argument. Was she a monster? Wasn’t she? She’s heard it enough from herself and she had no desire to hear it from Emma.

“That’s different.” It was whispered, low enough that she probably wasn’t meant to be heard. But she did.

“How?” She stepped away from Emma. She knew what was coming, but didn’t want to hear it. Didn’t want to hear it from Emma the one who she thought understood.

“He knew what you were-“ Emma froze. It was out before she could stop it. She looked up her eyes wide with disbelief. “Regina-“ 

“He knew what I was? That’s what you were going to say wasn’t it? He knows who I am. The Evil Queen.” She forced a laugh out. “Oh so Henry already knew I was a monster so it makes it ok for him to see it in action right before his eyes.” Of course. No one truly thought she changed. Not even Emma. 

“That’s not what I meant-” 

Regina stopped her with a raised hand before she could speak. “No I understand exactly what you meant. Well now that we have that cleared up I will be downstairs tending to our frightened son.” Her hands ran over her familiar suit, reminding herself that she no longer wore the stifling dress of the Evil Queen. The dress had fit her like a second skin. She shook the thought away and glared at Emma. “He’ll want to see you as well. Make yourself presentable before you see him. He’s traumatized enough as it is. We’ll need to provide a united front to calm him.”

She turned her back before Emma could respond and left the room. She headed downstairs ignoring the light thuds and curses coming from the room she just left. She stopped right at the threshold to the living room. Taking a deep breath, she ran her hands over her clothes again. She was no longer the Evil Queen. She was Regina Mills, mayor, mother. That was all. 

She entered the room. Henry was buried under a multitude of covers with a mug of hot chocolate held firmly in his hands. 

“How are you feeling, Henry?” She rubbed his hair into place.

“Feeling better. How’s Ma?” 

Regina sighed. He was always an observant boy. “She’s having a hard time adapting, but I’m sure she’ll be fine.”

“Do you believe what she says?” He doesn’t look at her, staring intently into his mug as if it held all the answers.

“About what, dear?” She licked her lips and wished Emma would wake up and tend to their son. She couldn’t do it alone. Ten years of tending to Henry by herself and now she was so dependent on Emma Swan. 

“That it was just the curse?” He fidgeted with his cocoa still not looking at her. 

Regina took the cup, put it on the table, then sat next to him. She took his hand in between her own. “It was the curse, Henry.” She ducked her head trying to make eye contact.

Henry looked away. “The curse just brought out the worst of us. So it was already inside us. Somewhere inside I must really believe it.” He buried himself under the covers. He looked lost.

Regina swallowed hard. “I don’t believe that.” Her voice cracked. She chose not to. If it was true then Henry truly hated her. No matter what she did she would never be good enough for him. And why should she be. She was the Evil Queen and nothing she did would free her of that name. Suddenly Henry was in her arms.

“I didn’t mean it. You are my mom. I love you. I didn’t mean it.” He sobbed burying his face into her neck. She didn’t hesitate. She pulled him in tighter tears falling from her own eyes.

“Shh. It’s ok. You’ll always be my little prince. That won’t change. Ever.” 

Henry nodded burying his face even deeper, but still repeating his words. She pulled him tighter against her and didn’t let go. She’d never let go.

 

 

 

Emma watched as Henry and Regina embraced. She didn’t deserve to break this scene. She wasn’t real family. She was little more than an egg donor. She had just decided to head back upstairs when Regina spotted her. She gave her a small smile. “Everything ok?” She mouthed.

Regina wiped her tears and nodded. Not letting go of Henry. Emma hesitated at the door so Regina rolled her eyes and motioned her forward being careful not to disturb Henry. That was all the encouragement she needed for she rushed forward and knelt at their feet.

“You ok kid?” She said softly rubbing his back gently.

Henry sniffled coming out of his cocoon and flung himself into her arms.

“Ma! I’m so sorry. I didn’t mean it. I didn’t mean it!” He sobbed. Emma was surprised, but buried him in her arms. 

“Kid. You have nothing to apologize for. I should be the one apologizing.”

“No. No. You were right. It’s all my fault all of this happened to you. If it wasn’t for me you would still be in Boston having a normal life.”

“Kid. Look at me.” He shook his head and dug in deeper. “Kid.” She pushed lightly on his shoulders until she could see his eyes.

“Never blame yourself for that, ok. My life has been one mistake after the other then you showed up. And I wouldn’t trade that for anything.”

“But-”

“No buts. Listen, we’re a family now. You, me and your mom.” She smiled up at Regina and got a small smile in return. “And nothing is going to change that, alright. Not the next two-bit villain, not any curse, nothing. You hear me?” 

Henry nodded and she used the blanket to dry his tears and nose, ignoring the sharp look Regina gave her. Once she was done Regina grabbed the blanket between two fingers and tossed it aside. 

Emma watched as she neatly folded the edges over the infected area. “Now that that’s settled why don’t we go eat the ice cream your mother has hidden in the back of the freezer.”

Regina stopped folding to let out a sharp, “What.” 

Emma shrugged. “Ice cream is good for the soul. And I think we all need a little ice cream right now.”

“Actually,” Henry started “I think I could do without ice cream for a while.”

“Quite right, Henry.” Regina nodded, leading Henry out the room and shooting Emma another look over her shoulder. “Come, why don’t we go to the kitchen and have the apple pie I baked this morning.” 

Emma watched them go with a smile on her face. This was her family now and no curse was going to ruin that for them. Ever.