Actions

Work Header

Raunchy Debauchery

Chapter Text

Emma wakes up suddenly. One second she was having the forbidden dream again and the next second she's lying on the hardest surface she has slept on in a long time. Did she fall asleep on the floor?

She gazes around the oddly familiar room that she can almost but not quite remember. Directly in her line of vision is a pyramid of beer cans on a bar. Craning her neck backward, she sees a dartboard and...is that a karaoke machine? She wracks her brain trying to place her current location.

She sits up slowly as her head spins with dizziness and disorientation. She carefully places her ears between her knees to stave off rising nausea. That's when she notices that she is completely naked and sitting on green felt.

"Please don't throw up on my pool table."

The husky voice startles her and she turns to see an equally naked Regina lying curled up beside her.

The previous night starts coming back to her in flashes. The trek down Regina's basement stairs to the game room. The competitive quarter bounce tournament on the bar. Laughing during drunken karaoke. Losing the game of strip darts that led to some raunchy debauchery upon the pool table.

"Oh my god, Regina."

"Mmm, that sounds familiar."

"What did we do?"

"'What didn't we do?' is a better question. I have rug burn on my tailbone as well as my knees."

Emma's eyes scan Regina's nude form as more memories flood her brain. A hickey is forming on Regina's slender neck. Are those teeth marks around her left nipple? There are four small bruises on her hip. Emma reaches out to touch them and they align perfectly with her own fingertips.

An image of gripping Regina's hips as she pounded inside of her loops through Emma's head. Since when does Regina own a strap on? The tell-tale ache between her legs reveals the reality of the memory. The resulting orgasm reverberates throughout her consciousness.

A featherlight fingertip traces her now erect nipple. "I see it's all coming back to you now."

Emma sighs heavily and lies back down. She kisses Regina's fingers then cradles them against her chest. "How are so calm, Regina?"

"I was a bit panicky when I was first woke up. But what's done is done. It's not like it was our first time."

"First time in a really long time."

"Yes...well...so we had a little slip. We can chalk it up to excess alcohol. Nothing needs to change, Emma. No one needs to know."

"Oh, fuck...Hook."

"I'd rather not."

Emma sits up again, then slides off the pool table and starts searching the room for her discarded clothing. "I'm serious, Regina. He trusts me to be alone with you even knowing about our past."

"Is that what he tells you?" Regina replies as she sits up.

"What's that supposed to mean?"

"Nothing." Regina hops down from the pool table and grabs a garbage bag from behind the bar. She proceeds to fill the bag with empty beer cans as Emma tries not to stare at the bite mark on her breast.

"Did Hook say something to you?"

"No, Emma. It's just that you get the doe eyes and I get the seething death glares."

"He does not."

"God. For someone whose lie detector is 100% with me, I wish it was just 50% with him."

"What does that even mean?"

"Nothing. Forget I said anything," Regina mumbles as she ties up the full trash bag, then turns to start some dish water for the quarter bounce glasses.

"No, Regina. I want to know what you meant."

"Let's not get into it, Emma."

"Oh, so you can fuck my brains out, but you can't tell me what you think about my husband?"

"You know what I think about him. He's a liar, he's not good enough for you, and he doesn't deserve you. Happy?"

Emma spots the matching set of finger bruises on both of Regina's hips and sighs. "Well look who's the liar now."

"No, that's always been true."

"I mean me, Regina. All of Hook's suspicions have come true. We fucked."

"Can you stop calling it that?"

"Really? So we didn't fuck? I guess we made love on the pool table? Whispered sweet-nothings that now include 'I love your tight pussy' and 'ride me like a good girl'? And when exactly did you buy a strap on? And why?"

Regina scoffs as she retrieves a potion bottle from the bar and submerges it beneath the soapy suds. "I see your memory hasn't completely returned."

"What are you talking about?"

"It will come back to you. And if it doesn't, I'll tell you. Just remember it was your idea."

"That sounds ominous."

"Let's please not fight right now. We are hung over and caught up in the moment. Let's just get cleaned up before Henry gets home. We'll figure everything out later."

"Oh god. What time is it anyway?"

"We have about an hour or so, I think. There's a shower just through there and some of my workout clothes are in the bedroom on the left."

"There's a bedroom down here? Why the fuck did we fuck on the pool table?"

"I don't know, Emma. My brain short circuits whenever your head is between my thighs. I think I forgot my own name for a while."

Chapter Text

Regina eases the bathroom door open and slips inside the steamy space. She places clean towels on the toilet tank and starts picking up Emma's dirty clothes from the floor. She notices through the translucent curtain that Emma is standing still beneath the shower's spray.

Emma hasn't moved since Regina entered the room nor bellowed about lost heat and cooling air from opening the door.

Regina clears her throat in an attempt to break Emma from her trance. It doesn't work. "I brought you some towels," she calls out just loud enough to be heard above the running water.

"Thanks," Emma acknowledges but still doesn't move.

"You need to get moving, Emma. We don't have a whole lot of time before Henry gets back from his sleepover."

Emma cuts off the water and reaches for a towel. "I already washed everything," she whispers as she absent-mindedly dries her face. "I was just thinking."

"Okay." Regina looks around and doesn't see any fresh clothes for Emma. "Did you have trouble finding something to wear?"

"I didn't look," Emma answers as she continues to dry off. "It's just...I don't know why I would be wearing your clothes."

"What?"

"What reason could I possibly have for wearing your clothes that doesn't translate to we spent half the night making each other come?"

"You borrow my clothes all the time, Emma. Since the first week you came to town."

"And for spending the night? What reason do I have for that?"

"You had too much to drink and I wouldn't let you drive. And you spilled beer on your clothes. That's why I'm washing them."

Emma wraps the towel around her body and pulls back the curtain. "You're awfully good at coming up with alibis and excuses."

"That's actually the truth, Emma. But it's fine. If you don't want to borrow my clothes, I'll just get something of Henry's for you to wear."

"No. I'm not worthy to wear Henry's clothes."

"You are being ridiculous. What has crawled up your ass?"

"You?"

"Excuse me?"

"Metaphorically or figuratively. Not literally. But maybe you would have...if we'd only had some lube on hand."

"Oh for fuck's sake, Emma. I'm going to put your things in the wash because they smell like beer. Then I'm going to start some coffee because...well I just want some coffee. And I'm sure I can find some of your things here if I look around. Maybe you left some clothes in the guest room."

"Anything with a big red 'A' will be fine."

"No one is going to know, Emma. You've spent the night here before."

"And people talked before, Regina. But I could hold my head up high because I knew nothing happened. Not in a long time anyway. Not on those nights. I can't do that now."

Regina brushes a strand of wet hair behind Emma's ear and cups her face gently. "Emma...it will be fine."

"No, Regina. It won't. How are you so okay with this? I broke my wedding vows." Emma plops down on the edge of the tub, staring at the floor.

Regina crouches down in front of her, placing a gentle hand on Emma's knee. She moves her face into Emma's line of sight. "Emma...no paperwork was filed at the court house...your officiant was a cricket..."

"So...What? You don't take my marriage seriously?"

"I just want you to be happy, Emma. If being with the pirate makes you happy, then I'm all for it."

"But you don't think it's a real marriage?"

"I try not to think about it at all. The only real thing I know is that it was my name you were screaming last night. That you were begging me to fuck you like you haven't been fucked in years. Your words. How am I supposed to take that? I thought he was at least bringing awesome sex to the table because I can't see what else he has to offer."

"He's my happy ending."

"Is he? Your happy ending is mediocre orgasms between his numerous weeks long sea voyages? What does he do for you?"

"He doesn't cheat on me, that's what he does for me. He's loyal, he cares for Henry, and he loves me."

"And you feel the same way about him?"

"Of course...he's my husband."

Regina takes a deep breath and exhales slowly before responding. "Okay. When does your pirate get home from his latest voyage?"

"According to his last shell phone call, two or three more days. Maybe four. Depends on wind speed and direction and tides and things I don't really listen to."

"Right...well get dressed and meet me upstairs in the kitchen. I may have a plan if it's something you want to do. I need to get out of this room. The humidity... is making my hair curl."

Regina turns to leave and makes it as far as her hand on the doorknob before Emma calls out. "Regina, wait...Can you magic away this hickey for me?"

"What hickey? I thought I was careful not to mark you."

"Well, you were drunk. It's on the spot...you remember the spot?"

"Oh," Regina smiles at the memories of sucking the sensitive skin on Emma's inner thigh. She had always been curious as to why sucking that particular spot would make Emma's back arch like a drawn bow and also cause her to flail about like an untamed bronco. It was one of her favorite Emma erogenous zones.

Emma clears her throat and opens her towel, then opens her thighs exposing the dark bruise to Regina's gaze.

"Wow," Regina places Emma's clothes beside the sink and kneels down to get a closer look. "I remember now."

"Yeah, well...can you make it go away?"

"Do you want me to teach you how? Self-healing superficial wounds is a valuable skill."

Emma chuckles and shakes her head. "Is everything a teachable moment for you, Regina? Sure. Show me your ways, Jedi master."

"Remember that magic is emotion," Regina smirks as she admires the deep purple mark. "Visualize the way it looked before and the way you want it to look again." She licks her lips and looks up at Emma who is holding her breath. "Then wave your hand above it...," Regina's hand hovers over the bruise just as her magic emerges. "Like erasing chalk from a slate...all better."

Emma pulls her eyes away from Regina's and sees the bruise has disappeared. "You said visualize the way it looked and the way you want it to look again? Is it really healed or is it a glamour spell so no one can see it?"

"Excellent question. It's healed. If it's a painful injury like a minor cut or burn, the pain will disappear as well. More serious wounds would require more powerful magic. But you have very powerful magic. You could probably heal all but fatal wounds."

"Really? Even without the dark one powers?"

"Yes. You are more powerful than you know, Emma. You just need proper training and more practice. Do you want to practice on my hickey?"

"Okay." Emma visualizes Regina's neck as it was the day before then waves the hickey away. She admires her work for a second. "Wait, how does healing your hickey teach me self-healing?"

"Right. I should have had you practice on me first. Do you have any other...mementos?"

"I don't know," Emma whispers as she stands and drops her towel. "Wanna do a hickey check?"

Regina looks up from her position on the floor. "Are you flirting with me?"

"Oh, shit." Emma smiles. "I think I am..."

Regina smiles back as she stands. "It's okay. You can flirt with me anytime you want. Let me see your neck." She takes her time doing a thorough examination. "Now your breasts..."

Emma's breaths quicken while Regina's eyes and hands roam her body.

"Your abs...and legs... How did you manage not to get rug burn on your knees?" Regina queries. "Turn around..."

Emma gives Regina a mischievous look before she turns her bare back to the woman.

"Oh that's right," Regina whispers into Emma's ear. "You were bent over the pool table...and then you were on your back on it..."

"Jesus, Regina."

Regina smiles and continues her inspection, letting her hands glide down Emma's shoulders, spine and glutes. She whispers into Emma's other ear. "You have a slight rug burn or... pool table burn as the case may be... on your tailbone...and another hickey on your ass cheek. Left side."

Emma shakes her head and searches for words. "My left or your left?"

Regina chuckles. "We're facing the same direction, Emma. And you only have one left." She hums in pleasure and caresses Emma's left cheek.

Emma rolls her eyes then actually has a logical thought. "How am I supposed to visualize the way it looked before? I have no idea what my tailbone and ass look like. What if I magic away a freckle or scar or something?"

"You do have three small freckles on your lower back...they remind me of Orion's belt...and your ass is...perfect." Regina waves her hand over the blemishes and magics them away.

"Okay, stop," Emma steps away and leans against the sink. "We need to stop, Regina."

"Alright," Regina holds up her hands as if surrendering.

"I already feel guilty doing it drunk."

"I know."

"I can't handle doing it sober."

"Emma! It's okay. We haven't done anything. We never have to do anything again if you don't want."

Emma searches Regina's eye and assesses the truthfulness of her words. "To be honest, I don't think we have enough time..."

Regina gives Emma a confused look just as her phone vibrates. She removes it from her pocket and reads a text from Henry. "'Can I go to Granny's for lunch with the guys and then to Nick's for a movie?'"

Emma holds Regina's gaze, her eyes dance as she tries to hide a smile. "Ask him what time he'd be home."

Regina types in the question to Henry and asks Emma a separate question without words.

Emma answers with a nod and a raised eyebrow.

Regina's phone vibrates again and she reads the answer out loud. "'Around 4ish.' Well, that's vague."

"Tell him yes," Emma orders.

"Are you sure?"

"Yes."

Regina types in their affirmative answer, then places her phone down on the counter. "What about feeling guilty?"

"In for a penny, in for a pound?"

"You know how to make a girl feel special."

"Well, you only do drunk what you really want to do sober...and I really want to fuck you right now."

"So romantic, too."

"Um, I really want to fuck you beside lit candles... and your hair is really curly right now... and I love... it like this...it would look really nice spread out on a pillow."

"You sweet talker, you."

"Remember when my parents had an affair for months? These are my role models."

"Is that what you want? An affair?"

"I don't know. Maybe I'm still a little bit drunk."

"Maybe you're trying to rationalize the situation."

"Well, according to the cricket, I have arrested development and I make poor decisions."

"What really made you change your mind?"

"You said we never had to do anything again if I didn't want. And you were telling the truth."

"I just want you to be happy, Emma."

"There you go telling the truth again."

Regina laughs as Emma picks her up and she wraps her legs around Emma's waist.

"Lead me to your secret basement bedroom, woman. And where is your strap on? I want to fuck you into the mattress."

Regina huffs into Emma's ear. "I don't have a strap on."

Confusion covers Emma's face as she remembers the night before. Realization finally dawns. "Holy shit! You grew a dick!"

"Yes. Well you asked me to."

"You can do that?"

"There is a potion involved."

"Can I do that?"

Regina nods then begins nibbling on Emma's earlobe. "And I can give you more hickeys to heal."

Emma belly laughs and turns left down the hall.

"Your other left!" Regina laughs as Emma does a 180 and kicks open the bedroom door.

Chapter Text

Chapter 3

Emma sighs in contentment. Her arms are wrapped around Regina as she lies in the cradle of strong legs and with her face nestled between perfect breasts.

"Can you breathe?" Regina asks.

"Mhm," is Emma's only response yet she turns to rest her ear against soft flesh. "I can hear your heartbeat."

Nimble fingers begin to comb through Emma's tangled tresses and she snuggles closer, hugging Regina tighter than before. "This is bliss," she murmurs. "Am I too heavy?"

"Not yet."

"Good, 'cause I don't think I can move."

"I can't feel my legs," Regina muses. "Or they feel like wet noodles. If the house catches fire, you'll have to carry me out again."

"Well, that's unfortunate because I can't feel my arms."

Regina thrusts her hips up against Emma's stomach.

"If you're up for another round, Gina, my dick potion wore off and I'll have to use my mouth. The sacrifices I make for you--oh, shit! Should I have worn a condom?"

"What?"

"I always ALWAYS make guys wear condoms! The first time the shoe's on the other foot and I went in raw? And I didn't even think twice about it? Oh my god, what is wrong with me?"

"It's fine, Emma. I remember your broken condom crisis from a few weeks ago. All of your tests came back negative. Don't worry about it."

"Really?"

"Yes, really."

"Well, what about babies? The only other time a condom broke on me, I ended up having Henry."

"I can't get pregnant, Emma."

"Yes, you can. I just nutted inside you."

"No, Emma. I have what is known in this world as a hostile uterus."

"What does that mean?"

"My cervical mucosa is toxic to semen. It kills everything before it can reach any eggs."

"You have spermicidal pussy snot?"

Regina shakes with suppressed laughter, then thrusts her hips again. "Get off, smooth talker. I have to pee."

Emma rolls over and flops onto her back. She lifts her head long enough to watch Regina walk naked to the bathroom and then stares at the ceiling. "Have I told you lately that you have a great ass?!"

"Only every time you've seen me naked," Regina yells back from the bathroom.

"So, yesterday? Or was it after midnight when we got down and dirty?"

Regina ignores the question and returns with her phone in hand, scrolling through her messages.

"What time is it?" Emma asks.

"Almost 2."

"Anything from Henry?"

"No. He must be having a good time with the guys."

Emma reaches out to Regina, urging her back to bed. Regina climbs over and straddles Emma's hips, then aims her phone to take a picture.

"No, Regina. I'm all sweaty and have fuck hair."

"I know. I did that." Regina snaps the photo and smiles.

"No fair. I don't have nudes of you."

"Oh, I cut you off above the boobs." Regina shows Emma the picture then tweaks her nipple. "These are for my eyes only."

Emma's eyes grow wide and she purses her lips but says nothing.

"Oh, right," Regina sighs. "The pirate."

"I'm sorry," Emma whispers.

"It's fine." Regina stretches forward to place her phone on the bedside table. "I just forgot for a minute." She settles back against Emma's pelvis and Emma rests her hands on Regina's hips.

"And I'm sorry I joked about your hostile uterus." Emma places her palm against Regina's abdomen and runs her thumb back and forth. "That was insensitive."

"That was actually funny. Crude but amusing. And I'm at peace with it."

"You never thought about having a baby?"

"Of course I did. When I first got to this land, I had all sorts of tests and procedures. All they did was give me a name for it. And then when Henry was very young, he used to ask for a baby brother or sister."

"He did?"

"Yes. It led to me telling him he was adopted way sooner than I wished. He was so hurt and angry. And he refused to talk to me about it. That's when I put him in therapy. Then he got that book and never mentioned babies again."

They are both silent for a moment as Emma continues to rub Regina's belly.

"Did you ever think about having another?" Regina asks as she begins to rock her hips forward and back.

Emma smiles at Regina's actions and takes a minute to find words. "Not for a long time...And sometimes I start to think about it now...but then Hook will do something childish and I think no way."

Regina stops moving her hips at the mention of Emma's husband. They stare at each other for a moment and Emma apologizes with her eyes. Regina gives Emma a resentful glare, then silently forgives her and resumes rocking.

Emma slowly inches her thumb southward and dips it between barely there curls. She rotates the digit deeper inside, hunting for treasure. Suddenly she stops her thumb's circular searching and whispers, "Should you have worn a condom?"

Regina commands with her eyes for Emma to not stop. "I'm clean and you're on the pill. It should be fine."

Emma makes a worried face but keeps up the nub rub.

"You are still on the pill, right?" Regina asks suspiciously.

"Yes...it's just sometimes when...someone...is away for weeks at a time...I forget to take one...or two."

"Emma." Regina sits back in shock and Emma stops moving her thumb but leaves it in place.

"But then I double up with sponges and jellies," Emma explains. "Like it says to do in the pamphlet. Plus...I always always use condoms."

Regina sighs heavily and thinks for a moment. "I'll have to read the potion recipe again. It's in an elvish dialect I'm not completely familiar with but I'm almost certain it doesn't produce actual sperm, just seminal fluid."

"Oh, so we're shooting blanks? That's a relief."

Regina chuckles. "Such a wordsmith."

Emma wiggles her eyebrows. "Got anymore dick potion?"

"Nope. And fresh out of a few ingredients."

"Well then, you wanna crawl up here and find out what else my mouth can do?"

"What?"

Emma removes her wet thumb and sucks it clean. "You've heard of queening, right?"

Regina smiles broadly and scrambles up Emma's body.

Emma wraps her arms around Regina's thighs and pulls her down closer, giving her center a long tongue swipe. "Grab onto the headboard, your majesty. It's gonna be a bumpy ride."

Chapter Text

Regina is rummaging through dresser drawers in search of clothes for both of them to wear while Emma is lying on the bed watching her. She looks over at Emma, admiring the shine in her eyes and the smile she can't quite hide.

"It's nearly three o'clock," Regina says after their outfits are chosen. "If Henry is coming home around 4ish, we need to get cleaned up and dressed."

"I know," Emma answers.

"Then why haven't you moved yet?"

Emma sits up and takes a deep breath. "I want to spend the rest of my life with you."

Regina sighs and leans against the dresser. "Don't say things like that, Emma."

"I can get a divorce."

"Can you?"

"Yes." Emma rises onto her knees and inhales deeply. "I want to leave Hook. I've been thinking about it for a long time. Way before this weekend. I want to leave him, and I want to be with you. Forever."

Regina's eyes travel down Emma's body and back up, then her gaze meets Emma's. "This is what you really want?"

Emma nods vehemently, her eyes never leaving Regina's. "Yes."

Regina steps over to the bed and reaches for Emma's hands, then holds them between her own. She kisses Emma softly. "Okay."

Emma smiles brightly and kisses Regina again. She then looks down at their naked bodies and to the messy bed she's on. "I just wish we had done this the right way."

"You're feeling guilty again." Regina sighs and wraps her arms around Emma's shoulders, while Emma's arms snake around Regina's waist and she rests her head against Regina's chest.

"We're supposed to be heroes, Regina. How would this look?"

"The people forgave your parents."

"I know. They put Mary Margaret through some shit first though. Basically shunned her and spray painted 'tramp' on her car."

Regina smiles against Emma's hair. "You do know that was me, right?"

Emma retaliates by poking Regina in the ribs. "I figured that was you. But you didn't make people slam doors in her face or make Granny stop serving her. But mostly I'm worried that this sets a poor example for Henry."

"What do you mean?"

"If he ever found out, would he think this kind of thing is acceptable? Would he think it's okay to cheat because his parents and grandparents did it? And not to mention the disappointment he'd feel--"

"Emma, slow down." Regina sits on the bed and takes Emma's hand, pulling her down to settle beside her. "Before you go into full panic mode, let me tell you the plan I wanted to run by you earlier. Before we got...distracted. Again."

"Okay."

"A forgetting potion."

"You want to give Henry a forgetting potion if he finds out?"

"Of course not. You and I would drink the potion to forget about the sex."

"Regina..."

"The sex is what is making you feel guilty. Henry would never find out about something we can't remember because we'd never talk about it. And frankly, the mixed signals you are giving me are frustrating."

"What do you mean?"

"The back and forth between 'yeah let's do this' and 'oh shit we shouldn't have done that' is dizzying."

"I'm sorry. I can't help it."

Emma makes the sad puppy eyes that Regina cannot resist and gets a kiss. "I know. We can remember everything else."

"How can we just selectively forget hours of sex?"

"It's the nature of the potion. We can choose how to remember the last day. We did get drunk and play juvenile games but no one got laid on the pool table. We did spend the day together, just not in bed."

"Would I forget learning how to self heal?"

"Hmm, we'll remember the lesson happening during brunch on the patio. Not naked in the bathroom."

"Practicing was so much fun though. I'd hate to forget that."

"That's fine. Choose not to drink it and learn how to deal with your guilt."

"Regina..."

"I'm not going to make you do anything you don't want to, Emma. It's just an option."

"Can I think about it?"

"Yes, of course." Regina gives Emma one more kiss then stands up. "I need to get a shower and start dinner."

Emma watches Regina walk out the door then stares at the wall. She hears the water begin to run and figures out Regina is taking a shower in the next room instead of upstairs. She gets up and walks to the bathroom, slipping into the shower behind Regina and wrapping both arms around her waist.

"What are you doing?" Regina asks.

Emma kisses a shoulder and whispers, "I want to be with you. If I'm going to forget, I want to hold you one more time."

Regina leans back against her and sighs. "So you've decided to drink it?"

"I'm still think about it."

"Mixed signals, Miss Swan."

"I'm sorry." Emma nuzzles Regina's neck and kisses her cheek. "Let me make it up to you."

Regina turns, wraps her arms around Emma's neck, and captures her lips in a gentle kiss. Their kiss deepens as the water continues to cascade over them.

Emma pulls back slightly and leans her forehead against Regina's. "Are you positive we will remember everything else? My decision to leave him?"

"Yes," Regina nods, giving Emma one quick kiss.

"Promise we will find our way back to each other."

"Yes." They exchange a few more kisses and then Regina pulls back. "Can I ask you something?"

Emma steals another kiss. "Anything."

"What made you think about leaving him before this weekend?"

"It hasn't been working with him for a long time. We argue all the time. I still don't trust him completely. And since he quit the deputy job, which caused a huge blowup by the way, he's always gone on some voyage doing... whatever he does. He sails away for weeks at a time, comes home for a few days or maybe a week, then he's off again to parts unknown. Makes me feel like a girl in a port, you know?"

Regina seethes at the new information.

Emma caresses Regina's cheek and smiles. "I think that's why drunk me was okay with seducing you."

Regina scoffs, "Oh, you think you seduced me? That's cute."

"Shut up. Either way, my brain was already out the door, my feet just need to catch up. I only wish that I had left him before this weekend."

Regina smiles and kisses her again. They share many soft kisses and gentle touches. Then Emma slips to her knees and lifts Regina's leg over her shoulder.

"Yes," Regina moans.

The bathroom gets quite steamy.

***********

Regina surveys the covered countertops, taking a quick inventory of the prepared toppings, and calculating what time the pizza will be ready.

Emma clomps up the basement stairs and closes the door behind her. "I made the bed with fresh sheets and cleaned the bathroom. The towels and dirty sheets are in the washer, my clothes are in the dryer. The beer cans are in the recycling bin and I put the glasses you washed back on the shelf. I think that's everything."

Regina nods her approval. "Sound about right to me. The dough should be ready and the sauce will be soon. Can you slice up the salad things while I spread out the crust?"

"Sure." Emma walks to the opposite side of the island and picks up the knife to starts slicing. "I still can't believe you make your own dough and sauce. It is so much faster and easier to just call for delivery or buy frozen."

"Not as much fun though. I enjoy creating things myself. And it's a bit like potion craft. Which I've always liked."

Emma gives Regina an I-see-what-you-did-there look. "Right. Potions."

"Have you thought about it?"

Emma watches mesmerized as Regina's hands gently and expertly spread out the dough. She draws her eyes away to slice a cucumber. "It's the only thing I've been thinking about," she whispers.

"And have you decided?"

Emma dumps her cucumber slices into a bowl and moves on to tomatoes. "You are absolutely positive we won't forget the things we talked about? And we'll find our way back together?"

Regina spoons sauce onto the crust and spreads it around and around. "I wouldn't suggest it if I wasn't sure. You think I want to forget you swearing fealty to me?"

Emma's mouth hangs open as she realizes that is what she did. She playfully waves her knife around making pretend sword sounds before she wipes it clean and starts cutting the lettuce.

Regina rolls her eyes at Emma's antics and tries to suppress a smile. She fails spectacularly.

Emma starts slicing onions before she continues. "I just think this whole thing happened for a reason. I'm not sure what it is yet. I feel like we could be on the brink of something really special and I don't want to lose us."

Regina sprinkles shredded mozzarella onto the pizza then begins distributing toppings. "Emma, even if by some fluke we do forget, just think back at how many times we've found our way to each other in the past. And even though we both said it was just casual, deep down it was very easy for me to start to fall in love. Every time I felt it stirring, I panicked. I ran away or pushed you away. And I have a feeling you did the same."

Emma shrugs her shoulder and wipes away a tear. "Damn onions."

Regina smirks. "Then the cycle would repeat all over again. Invariably, we'd wind up together once more. So we need to have faith that it would happen again. I think we're fated to be together."

"You do?"

"I adopted the child you gave birth to. Against all odds, I found a way to get to you after you became the dark one to save me. I followed you to the Underworld and even wished myself to the same place you were without knowing where you were or how we would get home. People always say they would go to the ends of the world for the ones they love. We actually do. I would follow you to any world or any realm. To save you, or to help you, or just to be with you. And I know you would do the same for me. You have saved me so many times. I think fate has been pushing us together for a long time and I'm tired of fighting it. You are a fate that I actually want for a change. And I have faith that we will always find our way to each other."

"I hope you're right."

"Hope is very powerful thing, too."

"Faith and hope," Emma muses as she scrapes all of the vegetable ends and peelings into a Farmer MacGregor's Compost Company bag. Then she places her knife and cutting board into the sink and wipes down her side of the island.

"Okay," Emma finally says. "Let's do it."

Regina puts the pizza in the oven and then they hug for a long time.

"Should we do it before Henry gets home?" Emma asks.

"Yes," Regina whispers. "I'll just go out to the garage and make it."

Regina walks out the back door and pauses to shed a few tears before continuing on to the garage.

Emma covers and refrigerates the remainder of the toppings, then stares out the window at the neighbor's flowers. She silently cries as she washes up a few dishes. She dries her hands when she's done and magics one of the flowers into her hand just as Regina returns with two smoking goblets.

Regina joins Emma by the sink and hands her one of the goblets. Fake smiles are on both of their faces. They kiss one last time then raise their drinks in a toast.

"To faith and hope," Regina whispers.

"Faith and hope."

They drink the potion at the same time then gasp suddenly. The goblets disappear and they stare at each other for a few seconds.

"Oh my god, that pizza smells amazing! How much longer? I'm starving!"

Regina laughs and walks around to the fridge, pulling out a baby carrot and handing it to Emma. "Snack on that, dear. It won't be too much longer."

Emma trades Regina the flower that she doesn't remember picking for the carrot. "Thank you for teaching me how to make homemade pizza that doesn't come out of a box."

Regina accepts the flower, smelling its sweet aroma while Emma crunches away on her carrot.

"Blue iris," Regina says, as she traces a petal with delicate fingertips. "One of my favorites."

"I thought it was purple. You should plant some. I'll buy you some seeds."

"I think it's bulbs"

"Good to know."

They stare at each other awkwardly, neither not quite knowing what to say.

"Let's set the table," Regina suggests.

"Okay."

As the move back toward the breakfast nook, Henry barrels through the front door, making a lot of noise and yelling that he's home.

"We're back here!" Regina calls out.

Emma checks the time and giggles. "I guess 'around 4ish' means 4:39."

Henry slowly makes his way through the foyer and kitchen, eventually peeking around the door and letting out a long sigh.

"Hey, Henry!" Emma calls out. "We're having homemade pizza! With gluten free crust and lactose free cheese. It probably tastes like a monkey's butt but it smells delicious."

"It tastes good.," Henry murmurs. "We have it all the time."

"Did you have a nice day, Henry?" Regina asks. "Enjoy your movie?"

Henry's eyes grow wide and his mouth hangs open. "Yeah," he says, recovering quickly. "It was fine...um, may I go to my room for a while? We had kind of a late night and woke up early and I want to rest for a little while before dinner."

"Are you sick, kid?"

"I'm fine. Just tired."

"Alright, sweetheart. We'll call you down when everything is ready."

Henry rushes towards the back stairs, giving both of his moms a wide berth.

"Emma, you can toss that salad now."

They suddenly hear Henry stomp the rest of the way up the stairs then run down the hallway and slam his bedroom door.

"What on earth brought that on?" Regina wonders.

"I don't know," Emma answers. "But he lied about the movie being fine. Lied about being tired, too."

Chapter Text

The sun has just set as Emma parks the bug in front of her house after a full 24 hours away. She retrieves her Tupperware encased leftover pizza from the passenger seat before exiting the car. She mounts the front steps, scoops up that morning's paper and tucks it under her arm as she unlocks the front door.

Once inside, she closes the door with her hip and stoops to pick up the letters, bills and junk from beneath the mail slot. She hums a nameless tune as she makes her way to the kitchen. She sets everything down on the table and begins sorting through the mail.

"Good evening, wife."

Emma yelps and whirls around, finding her husband sitting on the couch in the dark.

"Jesus, Hook. You scared the shit of me."

The pirate takes a sip of rum but continues to sit in silence.

"You're home early," Emma says.

"The winds were in my favor," Hook answers tersely. "You would have known that had you bothered to answer my call."

"My phone was dead for a while but I didn't see any messages from you after I charged it."

"On the conch, Swan. You remember the shell that sits on our bedside table? Which you would have heard, had you been home last night when I tried to contact you."

"Sorry. I stayed over at Regina's."

"Oh, well then, that gives me great comfort. You were with her. All night and all day, was it? Spending quality time with the boy, were you?"

"Some, yeah."

"Odd that. I saw him in town hours ago, unaccompanied by either mother."

"Henry didn't say anything at dinner about you being home."

"The lad did not see me. I saw him."

"He spent the afternoon with his friends."

"While you and the ex did what? Played backgammon?"

"She's not my ex. And I had a magic lesson."

"Upgraded her to current already? Tell me, love. What did your royal fuck buddy teach you today?"

"Don't call her that. And it was self-healing."

"You were injured?"

Confusion crosses Emma's face as she struggles to remember what she healed.

"Cover story a bit foggy, Swan?"

Emma shakes her head both to disagree with Hook and to rattle loose the memory. "No...we were on the patio...having brunch..."

"Perhaps you had one too many mimosas at brunch."

"I was...hungover..."

"Nice one."

"Why are you so angry? I don't know what you do 24/7. You don't see me freaking out about it."

"My wife comes home after a whole night and day, wearing her ex's clothes, reeking of her ex's scent, and you want to know why I'm angry?"

"I took a shower there, okay? I used her shampoo and body wash. She loaned me some clothes. That's nothing to get mad about."

"Is this what you do the whole time I'm away, Swan?"

"Do I spend time with my family while you're gone? Damn right I do. What did you expect? For me to be sitting here all day waiting for you to grace me with your presence?"

"Your family, is it? Regina is your family now?"

"Regina has always been family."

"Do tell, Swan. Is that because she's Henry's mother? Or because once upon a time she was your mother's stepmother?"

"Fuck you."

"Ah, I see. It's because you bed her on a regular basis."

"I'm not listening to anymore of this."

"Tell me, love. Did her pillow talk include tales of her time with me? Back when she was planning her curse? Back before you were even born? Feisty, that one. Likes to be on top."

"Feel free to leave any time now, Hook."

"Are you feeling jealous now? Knowing I had her first? How do you feel about knowing your grandfather was her very first?"

"That's enough, Hook! Now you've crossed the line! She was a kid mourning her boyfriend. And you bring up how she was traumatized even more just to try and make me jealous? Are you really that much of an asshole?"

"That I am, love. That I am. Rum?"

"You're drunk. You know what you can do with your rum."

"Oh well. Keep your secrets, Swan. I have secrets of my own, you know? Of course you don't know because you never bothered to ask."

Emma sits at the table and discreetly sets her phone's voice memo to record. "Tell me your secrets now, Hook. I'm listening."

"You never told me about renaissance faires and pirate fests. Bloody cruel of you not to tell me. That's where I go. Up and down the east coast of this land there are faires and fests in almost every port almost every weekend. And many fine people will pay large sums of currency just to ferry them about the harbor for one hour in a pirate ship.

"All was well and good until the authorities gave heed that I need permits and insurance to legally do such things. There was a fine wench who set me up with her cousin Vinny to procure the proper paper work--"

"Her cousin Vinny? Seriously?"

"I don't know why she would lie. Anyway, once I had a work visa and proper identification, I began to participate in the costume contests at these pirate fests. I don't know if you are familiar with the concept of cosplay but I win every time. What with the hook and the ship and all."

"Oh my god."

"So it's faires and fests on the weekends and ferrying folks about during the week. It's quite lucrative. A real cash cow, as they say. A real chick magnet as well."

Emma's eyes rise up to look at him. His head is beginning to grow heavy and he's struggling to keep it upright. Emma remains silent.

"There's a lass, you see? Heavy with child that she says is mine. Poor thing had no way to contact me until I came back to port a few weeks ago."

"This is how you tell me that you cheated? That there's a wench pregnant with your kid?"

"Lass, love. The wench was just a...passing fancy."

"And you've known she's pregnant for a few weeks but didn't tell me the half dozen times we did talk on the shell phone."

"Mmmmm...."

"That's just great."

"She was great...very enthusiastic...very limber..." Hook's head falls to the back of the couch as he passes out.

Emma presses end on her phone to stop the recording.

She gets up, leaves the house, and gets into her car. She drives straight to her destination, climbs the steps to the large white house, and knocks on the door.

When it opens, she takes a deep breath and blurts out, "Can you give me Kathryn's number? I'm getting a divorce."

Then she falls into her father's arms.

Chapter Text

"Can you come over here?...I don't know...all we could get out of her was she's getting a divorce and something about a renaissance faire and wenches...she's asking for you...well she said your name in her sleep..."

***

"No, she's not crying...she's not doing anything...She fell asleep on the couch about half an hour after she got here and hasn't moved much since...David called Kathryn and she called the records clerk to get the file number...had him go to the court house and look it up in the middle of the night...and it wasn't there...I just think you should come over...She said your name again...She hasn't said his name once..."

***

"Kathryn said there's no need...in all the chaos before the black fairy's curse they forgot to apply for a license...and didn't bother to apply for one after the curse was broken...basically had a commitment ceremony...if we go by old world handfasting rules...without renewing the vows it expired after a year and a day..."

***

"I had Archie come over to try and get her to talk...all she did was hug Pongo...they took a nap together...She cuddles Welby Jr. too..."

***

"She sat up when I was reading to Neal...I stopped after twenty minutes but she told me to keep reading...so I finished the whole book...Pippi Longstocking...Neal likes the horse on the porch...She smiled when Pippi picked up the horse..."

***

"I got her to take a shower...she's on the other end of the couch now...I really think you should come over...She said your name again...maybe Henry can come over..."

"No," Emma says from across the room.

"...I guess that's a no then..."

"Henry no. Regina yes."

"Did you hear that?...half an hour?...see you then...

***

Regina walks into the Charming's living room. Emma immediately sits up and pats the seat next to her. Regina takes her seat then looks over at Emma.

"I don't want to talk," Emma says.

"Okay."

Emma leans her head on Regina's shoulder and they sit in silence.

***

"How's Henry?"

"Okay. Worried about you."

"Is he still upset over whatever was bothering him that day?"

"No. That only lasted for a few days. I did get a bill from Archie though, so I suppose he worked it out on his own."

"He'll tell us when he's ready."

"Yes...he will."

***

Regina runs a comb through Emma's hair, easing out tangles and taming the long tresses.

"I've always liked your hair," she muses out loud. "It's so soft."

"He said awful things..."

"He did?"

"Things about me...Things about you...I was so close to throwing a fireball at his head or blasting him through the wall..."

"And that...frightened you?"

"It's been a long time since I went that dark...and even though you weren't there to talk me down...I still heard your voice in my head...telling me I was better than that..."

"I understand..."

***

"Pippi Longstocking?"

"I identified heavily with her as a kid...well all of the orphan stories really...the Wart, Dorothy, Mowgli...but I must have read Pippi Longstocking a dozen times...it was really nice to hear it in my mother's voice..."

***

"I am upset about the whole wench thing...but I feel like I should be more upset than what I am...and then I get upset with myself for not being as upset as I think I should be..."

***

"Why did you wait to visit? I heard my mother talking to you."

"Your mother also said you had your phone. You would have called or texted when you wanted to see me...I came when you asked while conscious."

***

"I knew I was either going to run away or withdraw...those are just my go to reactions...and I really didn't want to run away...but I didn't want Henry to see me like that either...so I came here..."

"Sometimes a girl just needs her daddy, too."

"That was really nice. He gives great hugs."

***

"Why the couch though? There's a perfectly fine guest room upstairs."

"Because this is the center of activity. If I had gone to the guest room, they would have respected my privacy...given me my space...but I would have just withdrawn further if I was isolated...down here I'm...in the midst...it's what I needed."

"I'm glad you're getting what you need."

***

"And Neal is like...he's a little person! He's young enough that he doesn't really understand what happened so they just told him that I didn't feel well. And that was a good enough explanation for him. He stroked my hair, read me stories, took naps with me...he even brought me soup crackers and juice pouches."

***

"Are you ready to move off this couch yet? It's been two weeks and you seem to be feeling a lot better."

"I don't want to go back...there."

"You don't have to go there...I've heard your mother offer you their guest room repeatedly."

"Kind of hard to move back in with the parents once you've moved out. Plus this place is kind of out in the sticks."

"You could take one of my guest rooms."

"Not really crazy about the word guest for some reason."

"How about this? I have a suite of rooms in the attic that you can move into permanently or until you're ready to move out. We wouldn't have to split custody. You would see Henry every day."

"I'm listening."

"Bedroom, private bath, kitchen, living room, spare room for either an office or workout room, two fireplaces..."

"What the fuck kind of labyrinth house do you have?"

"Is that a yes?"

"Fuck yeah!"

Chapter Text

Chapter 7
Emma sneaks into the house with a small brown paper bag in her hand. She looks around doors and corners suspiciously, calling out Regina and Henry's names. When no one answers, she slips into the powder room beside the kitchen and closes the door.

Just then, Regina comes in the back door with some groceries. She's almost done putting them away when she hears-- "WHAT THE FUCK?!"

"Emma?"

"Regina?"

Regina walks to the bathroom and speaks through the door. "Are you alright?"

"Yes. No. Maybe. I don't know."

"Do you need anything?"

"A time machine?"

"Emma?"

"Can you come in here for a second?"

"Okay."

Regina walks into the room to see Emma sitting on the toilet lid nervously rocking back and forth. Beside the sink sets an open box and a pregnancy test. It's positive.

"What is that?" Regina asks.

"Well it's not a Fun Dip stick."

"Emma...that's a..."

"That's impossible is what it is."

"It may be improbable but..."

"No, Regina. After the broken condom chaos, I took three of these tests and they were all negative."

"I remember."

"Then when Hook left, I was having my period so..."

"Yes, I remember that, too."

At Emma's confused look, Regina explains. "Our periods have been synchronized for quite some time now."

"But how do you even know that?"

"You announce every cramp like Leroy with hot gossip. Mine coincide. Why do you think I always have midol in my purse when you need it?"

Emma tilts her head as she processes the new information, then carries on. "Anyway, even though I was on the pill and had a period, I took another test after that just to be sure. Because I've seen that show where people pop out babies they didn't know were inside them because they never missed a period and it scared the crap out of me."

"And it was negative as well?"

"Yes! Then Hook was gone for almost all of the active pills in that pack. And even though I missed a couple of pills, absolutely nothing happened while he was here and then he was gone. And..."

"And?"

"I decided not to start another pack of pills while I was at my parents...didn't plan on needing them anytime soon, I guess. I had a short, light period while I was there, more like spotting really but stress does that to me sometimes and there was blood so it was fine."

Regina nods in understanding.

"And now it's four weeks later and..."

"So you stopped taking your pills completely?"

"Yes. I read it could take a while before your periods straighten out after you stop taking the pill but I wanted to be sure."

"Maybe it's a false positive. There's a second test in the box. Take the other one."

"Okay." Emma stands up and begins to pull down her pants.

"What are you doing?!"

"I'm gonna take the second test."

"With me in the room?"

"You've seen it all before...you can read the box and make sure I do everything right. It's probably user error or something."

"Right. User error," Regina says as she picks up the box and squints to read the tiny words. "It says you should use concentrated urine from when you first wake up. Do you even need to pee this quickly?"

"Like a racehorse. I had a lot of cocoa."

"Such a wordsmith. Did you wash your hands?"

"Why? Do I have pregnancy hormones on my fingers?"

"Do you ever follow directions? Should we collect the urine in a cup?"

"Do you have a cup handy?"

"These tests should come with a cup of they're going to list that as an option."

"I have to pee now, woman!"

"Okay, hold it under your stream for five seconds."

Emma finishes up the test and washes her hands as Regina sets a timer on her phone for two minutes. When Regina looks up, Emma has a scared look on her face.

"Everything will be fine, Emma. Take some deep breaths and try to relax."

They look into each other's eyes while they both inhale and exhale together. Emma slowly begins to smile. The alarm beeps and they both nod and look at the test at the same time.

"It's positive again," Emma says.

"Let me check the expiration date." Regina picks up the box and searches it for a date. "It is still well within the time allotted."

"The whole batch must be defective. I'll go back to the store and buy a different brand."

"Yes. I'll come with you. Sneezy will need to inform the manufacturer or check for a recall. Let me just put these tests back in the box and back in the bag. Wouldn't want Henry to find this."

"Oh my god."

"We'll get two more tests. And you'll take them in the morning like it says. We'll follow the directions completely."

They exit the bathroom together and freeze as they encounter Henry standing in front of the fridge holding a tomato and a head of lettuce. After pulling his ear buds out he deadpans, "Seriously? Right in front of my salad?"

Emma starts laughing hysterically.

"What does that mean?" Regina asks.

"Your mother and I are going out for a while," Emma says as she grabs Regina's free hand. "No unsupervised internet while we're gone."

"Oh my god. I'm almost 16, " Henry protests.

"Wanna make it for a week?"

"I've only seen the meme!"

"What does THAT mean?" Regina repeats.

Emma does the I'm-watching-you motion with her fingers toward Henry as she drags Regina out the door.

"Will someone tell me what that means?"

"I'll tell you in the car."

***

The following morning in Emma's bathroom, two sets of eyes peer down at the next test.

"How much longer?" Emma asks.

"Another minute."

"Is that a line? That's a line."

"That's the sample line to make sure you took the test correctly. The next line is the test line."

"Another thirty seconds..."

"It might be nice to have a baby in the house. We could take turns getting up in the night. And they smell so good. I used to love just smelling Henry's neck."

"Oh my god. You have baby fever."

"I'm just saying I'm not opposed to the idea. We could turn that spare room into a nursery."

"Stop talking. Time's up."

They both turn their eyes back to the test.

"It's positive, too."

"What are the odds that two different brands would have defective tests at the same time?"

"I'll take the second one," Regina says. "I haven't had sex since Robin and I can't even get pregnant. So if it's positive, we'll know for sure it's a defective test."

Emma turns around while Regina takes the test.

"You can't get pregnant?" She asks while admiring the floor tile.

"I have a hostile uterus. I also have a nine day luteal phase. Not that it matters because I have a hostile uterus. I don't usually talk about it."

"I don't know what all that means but since you're having your period, it will be double negative."

"A double negative is a positive. And I'm not having my period."

"I thought you said our cycles were synchronized?"

"They are."

"We'll I'm three days late. Why do you think I'm taking the test?"

"Shit."

Emma whirls around as Regina is putting the cap back on her test stick. "You're late, too?"

"This isn't funny," Regina says.

"It was never funny."

"I'm never late. Every 28 days without fail since I was 12."

"Exactly...how old are you now?"

"Are you calling me old? Are you suggesting menopause? I am barely 40!"

"Really?"

"Time was frozen, Emma. I was the same age the day we met as I was the day you were born."

"Okay. Some people start it early though. One of my foster mothers started it at like 34."

"Well then maybe you're the one starting menopause and that's why you're late."

"What are the odds of us both starting menopause at the exact same time? I'll just go to a doctor."

"We should both go to a doctor."

They look at each other with sad eyes and fall into a hug.

Emma rubs Regina's back as she asks, "How old were you when the curse was cast?"

Regina pushes away from her. "Barely 35!"

"Define barely."

"Define shut up."

"Why are you mad?"

"Because you think I'm old!"

"I do not! My ex-husband was like 400. I don't think you're old. I think you're hot."

Emma gets an oh shit expression on her face like she has said too much. Regina looks smug.

"We need to just calm down," Emma whispers. "And I need to face reality. Three positive tests from two different brands. The tests aren't defective. I'm pregnant. That test eight weeks ago must have been a false negative. There was a broken condom. I forgot pills all time. It's the only thing that makes sense. At least I'm not alone this time."

Regina takes Emma into her arms, rocking her from side to side. They pull apart and smile at each other. Regina glances down at her test and does a quick double take.

"Emma, my test is positive, too."

"What the fuck?"

Chapter Text

Chapter 8
"Positive?" Regina repeats. "Positive..." her heart begins to beat really fast and her breathing becomes labored.

"Regina!" Emma catches the other woman as she begins to sway and has her sit on the side of the tub. She grabs the paper bag off the counter, handing it to Regina for her to breathe into. It doesn't help. Her breathing continues to increase rapidly, her face turns red then grows pale, and she finally collapses against Emma's side.

"Oh, shit! Regina! What do I do? I don't know what to do!"

In a panic, Emma scoops Regina up into her arms and carries her down the stairs. She yells along the way for Henry to call an ambulance.

Henry, seeing his mother unconscious, grows angry and yells, "What did you do to her?!"

"I didn't do anything! Just call 911!" Emma answers as she continues on down the grand stair case and gently deposits Regina onto a couch in the living room.

"I need an ambulance at 108 Mifflin," Henry says into the phone. "Yeah, the mayor's house. The queen is unconscious! Get an ambulance here right now! I don't know what happened...Mom! They want to know what happened!"

"She took a pregnancy test and it's positive..."

"She's pregnant?!"

"...and then she started breathing really fast and she got really pale and she fell over! Then I yelled for you to call 911 and here we are!"

"She's pregnant?!"

"Yes! I don't know how far along. We just found out like 2 minutes ago."

Henry stands in shock staring at his mothers both still clad in their pajamas at 6:15 in the morning. His mom is pregnant. His mind does not know how to process this information. He just stares at Regina in her long silk dressing gown thinking she still looks elegant even while unconscious. Emma could be going to bed or to the gym in her tank top and long workout shorts.

"...I don't know how far along. Her period is a few days late..."

Luckily, Emma is speaking loudly enough for the 911 operator to hear because Henry has entered a fugue state and cannot speak.

Sirens announce the arrival of the ambulance and Emma scoops Regina into her arms again, yelling for Henry to open the front door.

"Call your grandparents! Henry! Do you hear me?" Emma yells as she climbs into the back of the ambulance along with the gurney that holds his unconscious mother.

"Can he ride in the front?" Emma is asking the paramedics. "I can't leave him alone like this!"

Emma gives the order before she gets an answer. "Kid! Get in the front and call your grandparents and Zelena."

Henry climbs into the cab of the ambulance and listens to his mother answer questions he didn't know she knew.

"What's her name?"

"Regina Mills."

"How old is she?"

"40. Uncursed years."

"Medical conditions?"

"She just found out she's pregnant. It was a shock. She has a hostile uterus and a 9 day luteal phase. I don't know exactly what that means but she didn't think she could get pregnant."

"Did she have anything to eat or drink today?"

"No, we just woke up. First morning pee for the tests."

"Any drug allergies?"

"Not that I know of."

"Did she hit her head?"

"No. I caught her."

Henry quietly sends a group text to his grandparents and aunt to go to the hospital. Regina has lost consciousness.

***

"She's fine," Henry says to everyone in the waiting room. They are all eager to hear any news about Regina. "She fainted and needed some oxygen and some fluids through an IV. Now they are running some more tests. But she's awake, slightly dehydrated, and...and pregnant."

"Pregnant?" David and Snow ask together.

"How?" Granny inquires.

"Who is the father?" Leroy demands.

"How far along?" Archie ponders.

"When can we see her?" Zelena worries.

"Stop with the questions," Henry huffs. "First things, first. Mom is pregnant and mom got her that way."

"What?" Snow scoffs.

"Emma got mom pregnant."

"Henry, um..." David tries to explain.

"Trust me. I have been living with them for the last month. They are in and out of each other's bedrooms all the time. And in the bathroom. Together."

"That doesn't mean..." Granny protests.

"I don't even know why they bother with the separate rooms charade."

"You do know how..." Archie begins.

"Yes, I know how babies are made. I've also seen flying monkeys, dragons, and trolls. Nothing is impossible."

"But how?" Zelena demands.

"They have magic shooting out of their fingertips," Henry whispers staring at his fingers just as a full body shiver takes him over from head to toe.

"Why would you think..." Snow ponders.

"I've heard things. Not lately. They're quiet when they know I'm home. But when they think I'm gone...it's like porn."

*** 6 weeks earlier ***

Henry comes home to drop off his overnight bag before meeting his friends at Granny's. He mounts the stairs to the second floor and throws the bag onto his bed. He knocks on his mother's door and sticks his head inside when she doesn't answer. There is no sign of her. The bed is made and everything is picture perfect as always.

He had texted a whole forty-five minutes earlier so he just assumes she went to the grocery store or is doing other mom stuff. Henry shrugs and closes the door.

As he goes back down the stairs, he hears a faint moan. Believing his mother may be hurt somewhere, he searches each room until he tracks down the source of the moaning to the slightly ajar basement door.

He starts down the stairs and is halfway to the bottom. He is just about to call out for his mother, when he hears her voice.

"Yes...yes...right there.. Emma...oh... God..."

He freezes in place, not completely comprehending what exactly is happening quite yet but that could be a big case of denial.

"Oh my god, Regina...you are amazing..."

Henry's mouth hangs open and his brain malfunctions. He wants to leave, he wants to run up the stairs and to slam the door behind him. He wants to run away and never come back. But his feet. Will. Not. Move.

"Oh yeah, baby...wrap those gorgeous legs around my waist...do you want it slow and easy...or nice and rough?"

"Stop teasing and fuck me, Emma! Any way you want!"

Henry's eyes pop open very widely.

"Hold on, Gina...let me just find your ON switch...."

"Aah... my... God... ah... fuck... me... yes..."

"Oh, yeah...there it is...one round of nice and rough coming up...I want to make you come in every position of the kama sutra."

The sound of Henry's retreating footsteps are masked by the headboard banging against the wall.

*** end of flashback ***

"And that was six weeks ago. The ultrasound says the baby is six weeks old. So ipso facto. Emma got mom pregnant."

"It's true," Granny says. "I didn't know it the day that the poor boy came into the diner with his friends and couldn't eat one bite. But the next time I saw Regina...I could smell Emma all over her. Like she'd been marked. Claimed. All the animals knew right away."

"Well, why didn't you say anything?" Snow asks.

"Not my secret to tell," Granny replies, looking over her glasses at a chastised Snow White.

"And I had a big fight with Nick later that day, when he tried to get me to watch lesbian porn. I yelled at him for fetishising lesbians. And he said I was just over sensitive because my moms are gay. And he told all the kids that mom and mom were secretly doing it even though I never told him that. But all the kids believed him. And the rumor got even bigger after Hook left and Emma moved in. So everyone under 18 knows."

"This is still impossible though," David protests. "Even if they are...together. Emma...lacks...a certain something...to get Regina pregnant."

"It didn't sound like she lacked anything."

"Henry!"

"Sorry, grandma....Aunt Zelena, is there a spell...that could give Emma...something...to get mom...?"

Zelena holds up one finger as she tries to stop laughing but keeps failing to do so. "There is a po-...a po-...a potion...," she wheezes, turning her head from side to side. "But they would need to add a...an extremely rare...secret ingredient...to make a...to make a baby!" Zelena sits down on the hard waiting room chair and holds her side as she continues to laugh.

Henry glares at his aunt but carries on. "Archie can verify that I told him six weeks ago exactly what I told you just now."

"It's true," Archie replies. "I didn't tell anyone. Hipaa." He starts to say something else but stops and shakes his head.

Just then, Emma walks into the waiting room as seven sets of eyes turn to look at her.

"SUPER STUD!" Leroy yells. "My hero! Woohoo!"

Zelena falls off her chair cackling.

"What's going on?" Emma asks.

Henry turns his glare towards her. "We know what you did to my mother."

"Yeah, kid? I got her to the hospital. They're keeping her a few more hours, maybe overnight, for more tests and to monitor the baby. This isn't how she wanted everyone to find out. She's still processing it herself. We don't have an explanation yet, and honestly I think she feels kind of vulnerable and violated."

"Well, from what Henry heard, she gave enthusiastic consent," Zelena says with a wicked grin.

"What does that mean?"

"You tell us."

"She doesn't remember," Archie observes.

"Remember what?"

"Oh, for fuck's sake," Zelena sighs.

"Can we see her?" Snow asks.

"Yeah, that's what I came to tell you. Just family for now. But Archie, can you stick around? She'll probably want to talk to you in a little while."

"Of course," Archie replies, sitting back down.

Granny picks up a magazine and takes a seat.

Leroy winks and shoots finger guns in Emma's direction.

"Easy with the questions, okay?" Emma informs the rest. "She needs to avoid stress."

Emma leads them down the hall to Regina's room. Her silk robe has been replaced by a hospital issued gown and there are electrodes attached to her chest, arms, and legs monitoring her heart. An IV is feeding fluids into her arm. And two transducers are hidden under her gown on her abdomen to monitor the fetus and uterine contractions. An oxygen mask also hangs near Regina's head in case she needs it.

"Mom!"

"Sis!"

Both of Regina's cheeks are kissed twice as Snow and David step up and then back letting Henry and Zelena sit on either side of Regina's bed. Emma stands by the door watching her whole family.

"How are you feeling?" Zelena asks, tucking some stray hair behind Regina's ear.

"I'm fine," Regina answers. "I hyperventilated or something. They're just being overly cautious. Milking my insurance."

"It was kind of scary," Henry confesses. "Emma carried you all the way downstairs and even out to the ambulance."

Regina turns her eyes toward Emma and smiles. "Oh, Emma," she gushes, her heart eyes growing larger. "You shouldn't have carried me. You're pregnant, too."

Four sets of eyes whirl around to gape at Emma.

"Oh, yeah," Emma shrugs. "I forgot."

Chapter Text

"You're pregnant?" Snow and David exclaim together.

"You, too?" Henry squeaks.

"Well done, sis," Zelena says with a salacious wink.

Henry gets a horrified look on his face at the new information.

"Emma?" Regina says gently. "You didn't tell them?"

"I was so worried about you, it completely slipped my mind."

"So you really forgot?"

"Denial goes a long way. Plus I was just barely on the cusp of accepting it when you, little miss drama queen, had to go an upstage me."

Henry's gaze suspiciously follows the exchange between his moms. His mind's eye blinks in and out with images of them that he does not want to see.

"How?" He stammers. "The two of you?...both of you?...together?...at the same time?...AT THE SAME TIME?!"

"Oh, Henry," Regina sighs, cupping her son's cheek. "I'm so sorry you had to find out this way. And I promise as soon as we find an explanation, we will answer all of your questions that we can."

Four shocked faces stare back at Regina as she continues.

"But right now, I insist that Emma get a thorough examination."

"I feel fine, Regina."

"I insist."

Emma sighs and shrugs her shoulders. "The lady insists. I'll go find a nurse or get a doctor."

Four shocked faces now stare at Emma as she smiles at Regina and leaves the room.

"You guys should go," Regina says. "Go get some breakfast. Go to work or school. I'm fine. I just fainted. I'm sure Emma is fine and we'll both be released in a few hours. Come back later and give us a ride home."

"You really expect me to leave when my moms are in the hospital?"

"Well at least go eat and maybe drop off your homework and get today's assignments. I don't want you going hungry or falling behind with your schoolwork."

"Fine."

"Oh, and if you guys are going to Granny's, pick up an order of apple pancakes for me. With lots of syrup. And the biggest milk she has. Not 1% or 2% watered down milk. Whole milk."

"Not lactose free vanilla almond milk?"

"No, just regular milk. And maybe a banana. Yes, definitely a banana. And get the same for Emma. Plus some oatmeal and orange juice for her. She looks like she could use some iron. I'm sure her blood tests will confirm that."

"Fine," Zelena says, suppressing a smile. "I'll do the food run and go by your place and get the two of you some clothes. Any specific outfit you had in mind for today?"

"I picked it out last night. It's on my bed."

"Shocking."

"Ha-ha. And grab my phone. It's in Emma's bathroom."

Zelena coughs to hide a laugh. "Gross. Get some rest. I'll be back soon."

"Well, I do need to get a few things done at home," David says.

"I can take Henry for breakfast and then to school," Snow adds.

"I really don't want to leave," Henry protests again.

"You can come right back when you're done. I'm probably going to take a nap and Emma will be in the lab for a while. You won't miss anything."

"Ok, but please note that this is under protest. And the only reason I'm not fighting it is because you're supposed to avoid stress."

"Duly noted."

"I love you."

"I love you, too."

The quartet leaves together and gathers with the waiting trio down the hall to have a meeting.

"Well, they are clearly a couple," Zelena says. "Did you see the way Emma just did as Regina said? Barely any argument. She just 'yes dear'-ed right out the door."

"But do they really not remember, like Archie said?" Snow asks. "Or are they just not telling the whole story?"

"No reason to keep it a secret now with both of them being knocked up," Zelena answers.

"Emma is pregnant, too?" Leroy's eyes glaze over and he stares off into space smiling. Until David punches him in the arm. "Ow."

"So what caused the memory loss?" David asks.

"Do you think Hook caught them and did something?" Snow gasps.

"Henry?" Zelena asks. "When did you hear the thing?"

"It was the day that Hook came back but he didn't come to our house. I left after it happened and came back a few hours later. We had pizza for dinner and they acted like nothing was different. It was bizarre. I mean I knew they got together from time to time and they always acted like nothing was different then too. But I never heard them before so I was freaking out."

"What? They got together before this?" Snow asks.

"Yeah? I used to hear Emma sneaking in all the time. And I've walked in on them asleep and naked spooning early in the morning more than once."

"How did you hear Emma sneak in but not the boom boom?" Zelena teases.

Henry sneers at Zelena and holds up his ear buds. "My oldest and dearest friends."

"Who exactly is the big spoon? Just curious."

"We're getting off track," Snow interrupts. "Could Hook have caught them another time that Henry didn't know about?"

"No, Emma never snuck in after she got married. I guess that's what caught me off guard, too."

"Plus," David adds. "If Hook had caught them, he wouldn't wait until later to say something. He would have barged in demanding pistols at dawn or something. I punched Whale the first chance I got."

Henry looks back and forth between his grandparents in disbelief. "There are things I do not need to know."

"Let's not rule Hook out just yet though," Zelena muses. "Emma and Regina are both powerful practitioners of magic. And together they're undefeated. He would have been at a disadvantage. And even angry, he isn't stupid. He may have bided his time and then went after the weakest link."

"And why is Emma the weakest link in this scenario?" Snow snaps.

"Because she actually cared for the man. He would have definitely used those heroic feelings of honor and all that crap against her."

"Okay. Hook is suspect number one. What else could have happened?" David asks.

"The usual. Bumps on the head. A curse. A forgetting potion..."

"Forgetting potion!" Snow says. "Do you think Hook spiked their drinks?"

"Maybe they took it themselves," David suggests.

"What?" Zelena looks incredulous.

"Well, all that honor and heroic stuff that Emma would feel...I get that. Back when Mary Margaret and I were having an affair, even though I felt like my heart and soul and life belonged to Snow, I still felt guilty for cheating on Kathryn."

"Oh, my god." Henry gives himself a double face palm. "Archie...pencil me in for later today, please."

Archie clears his throat. "I'll...I'll text you a time to come by."

"Sorry," David says touching Henry's shoulder.

"That does sound like something Emma would do or at least think about," Snow says.

"And Regina would know how to make it," Zelena adds.

"None of this explains the babies," Granny interrupts.

"Zelena, what was that secret ingredient you mentioned earlier?" Snow asks.

"I don't know," Zelena shrugs. "It's a secret."

"What?"

"I never looked into it. I've been known to diddle a lady or two but I never wanted to have a baby with them."

"Archie," Henry whines.

"I'll add another half hour to your time."

Snow holds up her hands to silence every one. "I think what Henry heard was a private thing for their family and should have been only between them. But what's done is done and since I'm sure Leroy has already told half the town..."

Leroy stops texting and puts his phone in his pocket

"...Emma and Regina will eventually find out that we know. But we can wait to tell them until all of Regina's tests come back normal and she's been discharged. She IS supposed to be avoiding stress. Agreed?"

"Agreed."

"Alright. Let's all do what we need to do and meet back here in...four hours?"

"Sounds good."

***

At the mayor's insistence, Emma finds herself in the second bed in Regina's semi-private hospital room. After being subjected to blood tests and a Doppler fetal monitor, Emma is now squinting at blobs on an ultrasound screen.

"What am I looking at?" She asks the technician.

"Ok, see this big circle here? That's the gestational sack. The baby will grow inside there. This smaller circle is the yolk sack. That will become the placenta. And that tiny little speck right there...that's the baby."

"That tiny thing? How big is it?"

"Just about 4 millimeters long. So based on the size, the hcg levels from your blood work, and the first day of your last period, I estimate that you are a little less than 6 weeks after fertilization."

"Not 10 weeks?"

"Definitely not 10 weeks. They grow about 1 millimeter a day at this stage. So at 10 weeks, it would be closer to 30 millimeters from crown to rump. This guy is tiny. No where near 10 weeks."

Emma smiles over at Regina and mouths, "Not Hook's."

"In fact," the technician continues. "You are as far along as Ms. Mills is. Maybe down to the day."

"Okay but how are we 6 weeks pregnant when we had periods 4 weeks ago?"

"You both said they were shorter and lighter? Like a day or two of spotting?"

"Yes."

"That was implantation bleeding. It's normal and pretty common. It's when the fertilized egg attaches to the lining of the uterus."

Emma winks at Regina. "Twins."

Regina is busy wiping pancake syrup from her mouth and tears from her eyes.

"Why are you crying?" Emma asks.

"That's Henry's brother or sister in there," Regina sighs.

Emma points to Regina's abdomen. "In there, too."

More tears flow from Regina's eyes.

"Watch out for those hormones," Emma teases.

"Shut up."

"I'll print off copies," the technician says. "But everything looks good here. I'll send your doctor my report but everything looks fine here to me."

"Thanks."

The technician removes to wand and tells Emma she can clean up in the bathroom. By the time Emma returns, the technician has packed up the ultrasound machine and wheeled it out of the room.

Regina holds up the printed screenshots. Emma walks over to look at the pictures. Regina scoots over on her bed, so Emma climbs in. Then Regina reaches over to her bedside table, grabs a different ultrasound printout, and holds it up beside Emma's. They are nearly identical.

"This is some 'Village of the Damned' shit," Emma whispers.

Regina snorts. "Get out of my bed."

Emma lays her head on Regina's shoulder instead. "This is weird though. Just less than 6 weeks. It goes back to that day. ..are you missing any time?"

"I can't remember everything from when we were drinking. But I'm sure I would remember if some man came over. And we what? Had an orgy?"

"I think with three people it's just called a threesome."

At Regina's incredulous look, Emma just shrugs. "I read."

"Whatever it's called, I'm sure we would remember it. Or if we had been drugged...there would have been after effects the next morning and I felt fine."

"There was one thing for me...when Hook was grilling me about spending the night with you. I couldn't remember our magic lesson. I remembered that we had one and what it was about. And I cut my leg shaving a few weeks ago and healed it, so I remember what you taught me. But I don't remember the actual lesson."

"Weren't we on the patio?"

"Were we? Because I could only remember seeing the patio out the window back then."

"So we are remembering things not quite right?"

"Someone has been fucking with our memories. Do you think there's a new villain in town?"

"I don't know. It's strange but I don't feel...violated. I should feel violated...and I am extremely confused but I just feel peaceful about it. I can't explain why. I's freaking me out, as you say."

"Yeah, I thought for sure my baby was Hook's and when she said there was no way it could be his...I just felt relieved. But then I should have felt all those other things. Violated. Confused. And I just don't. Even though it's not planned and the timing could be better...I'm fine with it.."

"So we're doing this?"

"Are we doing this together?"

"I'll rub your feet, if you run mine."

"You do have cute feet."

"You sweet talker."

"Can I confess something to you?"

"Always."

"I've been having weird dreams about you."

"Really? Weird how?"

"Well...sex dreams."

"You having sex dreams about me is what led to half of our mayor-sheriff meetings."

"Yeah, I know. These are just different though. Because in these dreams...I have a dick. Not a strap on. A dick...with like sensations and...ejaculations."

"Ejaculations? Plural?"

"Yes. And in a variety of positions."

"With me?"

"Inside you."

"When did you start having these dreams?"

"Twice at my parents. And about once a week since I moved in."

"So before this whole pregnancy thing?"

"Yeah, way before your pregnancy thing anyway. And they're like little snippets of memories. But I don't know what room we were in."

"What did the room look like?"

"Tan walls, tan sheets, black and white furniture. No windows. That freaked me out a little. Not as much as the dick, but I noticed it."

Regina picks up her phone and scrolls through a few pictures. "This was on screen when Zelena dropped off our things. She knows we used to get together, so she probably thinks it's old. I thought it was old but..." She hands the phone to Emma, showing a picture of herself sweaty, her long blond hair a tangled mess. "Are these the sheets?"

"Fuck yeah! When was this?"

"It isn't time stamped, but the picture before it is Henry's first driving lesson. And the ones after it are from the day you moved in."

"Henry's first driving lesson was a few days before we got drunk."

"Yes. And two days after our little party, I found these sheets in the washer still damp. Like I washed them and forgot to put them in the dryer. I assumed I was still drunk when I washed them and just forgot."

"What room is this?"

"It's my shelter in place bedroom in the basement for hurricanes and big storms. There's another one for Henry with bunk beds."

"Oh, that explains the no windows. So the dreams are real? I fucked you with a dick?" Emma has an ah-ha moment. "And then you rode my face!"

"Will you...keep your voice down?"

"Why don't I remember this? Shit! Did I get you pregnant?"

"I don't know. There are potions to explain the appendage...And the lack of memory."

"You think I took a potion to fuck you with a dick and then took another potion to forget about it?"

"All evidence points to that. And I would so much rather have it be the two of us being horny, drunk, and stupid...then it be some third party villain drugging and violating us both."

"Does that dick potion explain the babies?"

"One thing at a time. I'll have to do some reading up. I would like to think it's yours."

"I'd like to think mine is yours, too. They really would be twins. Both half me and half you. Fraternal but still conceived on the same day. Wait! Did you grow a dick and fuck me, too?"

"Emma! Keep your voice down. Possibly?"

"So we had sex. Drank to forget it. Okay, dumb to forget it. Hook left and I moved in. Why haven't we slept together again?"

"Well, we have slept together, we just haven't...slept together."

"Falling asleep beside each other watching movies does not count."

"I was being respectful. Waiting for you to make a move when you're ready.

"I think Henry may think we really are sleeping together. The other morning he caught me coming out of your room and asked if we were watching "Thelma and Louise" or "A League of Their Own" or if we went full "Fried Green Tomatoes." The little shit. And you should have heard the "What did you do to my mother?" when you were passed out. He's very protective of you."

"He's a good boy."

"So how do we not forget?"

"You mean remember?"

"You know what I mean. A memory potion?"

"Maybe. I'm a bit weary of drinking potions though now that I'm pregnant...holy shit, I'm pregnant. We're pregnant."

Chapter Text

Regina stands mesmerized at her kitchen window. The repetitive bounce of ball against concrete had drawn her attention and now that she has seen the unforgettable scene of Emma Swan shooting hoops in the driveway, she cannot look away.

She remains there under the pretence of rinsing the breakfast plates and glasses before loading the dishwasher, but in reality she's watching muscles flex and sweat drip. Soft grunts echo in her ears matching the sounds of a memory she can't quite recall.

"Here," she hears and turns to find her son handing her a linen napkin. "You have some drool."

She almost lifts her hand to check her chin but stops the reflex. "I was just wondering if your mother was thirsty. She's getting quite sweaty. I wouldn't want her to get dehydrated."

"Yes," Henry teases. "My mother is thirsty."

Regina clears her throat and pretends not to get his joke. "Are you hungry? It's almost lunchtime."

"I'm meeting Ava at Granny's, then we're going to the library to work on a school project. If that's cool?"

"Of course. Ava? Is this like a date?"

"No, we're just friends. I'm still sad about Violet moving away. And besides, Ava has her eye on the captain of the basketball team."

"Oh, he's cute."

"Girls basketball team."

"Oh. She's cute, too. I'm sorry about Violet and her father moving back to Connecticut."

"Thanks. I'll be okay." Henry glances out the window to see Emma lifting her shirt to wipe sweat from her face. "You guys will be okay, too."

Regina's gaze has been captured by Emma's strong abs. Her eyes grow large as Emma strips off her wet shirt and continues to play in her sports bra.

"When are you guys going to start to look pregnant?" Henry asks.

Regina notices that Emma's breasts have grown at least one cup size but decides to keep that information to herself. "Probably not for another few months."

She continues to watch Emma dribble the ball, maneuver around some invisible opponent, and sink a lay up.

"You know that I know, right?" Henry is saying.

"Know what?"

"That you guys want to be together. That you've kind of always been together. Even though you've let each other go a few times."

Regina pulls her eyes away from Emma, giving their son her full attention. "How do you know that?"

"You two aren't that subtle. And Emma was never as quiet as she thought when she used to sneak in."

"Oh, my god!"

Henry shrugs at his mother's shocked expression. "When I was really young, I thought you were just having sleepovers or slumber parties like kids do. Movies, manicures, whatever. But then one morning, I went into your room and Emma was still there. You were both still asleep...and cuddling."

Regina's mouth hangs open. She is at a loss for words.

"I was shocked of course. But then I noticed that you looked so peaceful," Henry continues. "And happy. Your head was on her chest. And it looked like the sound of her heartbeat lulled you to sleep. She looked at peace, too. That's all I want. For you two to be happy. And if it's with each other...I think that's great."

"You would really be alright with us being together? Us being a family?"

"Yes! I thought we were going to be or at least working toward that the night before Robin's funeral. I heard Emma sneak in after Zelena went home."

"Henry, I promise you, nothing happened that night."

"I know. You were both still dressed the next morning when I checked in on you. You still looked peaceful though. Both of you. And I thought maybe you could help each other get through losing Hook and Hood. I thought that could have been the start of us being a family. Just the three of us."

"I thought that, too."

"But then magic brought Hook back somehow and you guys started fighting again and everything just got ruined."

"That's when you ran away to New York."

"Yeah, magic tore you guys apart."

"Oh, Henry."

"I'm fine now. Archie has been a big help. With a lot of things. Especially with the...pregnancies thing."

"Really?"

"Yes. And surprisingly so has Grandpa Gold. Did you know he had two moms, too?"

"He did?"

"After his dad left, he was adopted by two women. They were the ones who taught him how to spin."

"He never told me that."

"He had a lot of advice. At least we live in a bigger house than they did."

"What is that supposed to mean?"

"Nothing." Henry tilts his head toward the window. "I see the way you look at her. And way she looks at you. The way you look at each other. If you're worried about my reaction and that's what is keeping you apart, just put that fear to rest. I'm happy about it, okay? So stop wasting time and go get your girl."

Henry kisses his mother's cheek and makes his way toward the back door. "Make her a grilled cheese sandwich," he suggests. "You know the best way to Emma's heart is through her stomach."

"I thought it was through her chest."

"Don't talk about my mom's chest."

Regina throws the napkin at him as he slips out the door.

Henry walks through the breezeway and enters the garage to retrieve his bike. He wheels it out the large middle door and passes Emma still shooting baskets in the driveway.

"Hey, kid. Wanna play Horse?"

"Not right now. I'm meeting Ava at the library."

"On a Saturday? That sucks."

"School project," Henry shrugs. "Did the doctor say you could work out like this?"

"Yeah. We both got the all clear at our follow up appointment yesterday. Resume activities as normal. Take vitamins. Eat healthy. Plenty of rest. Come back in a month."

"Mom's worried you'll dehydrate."

Emma's eyes shift toward the kitchen window, then she grins and winks at Henry. "I'm going in in a minute. You need a ride to the library?"

"No. We're meeting at Granny's first, then Ava wants to go watch basketball practice after."

"Is she still crushing on the captain?"

Henry nods. "Hard."

Emma laughs and sinks a 3 pointer. "What about you? Crushing on anybody yet?"

"No. Maybe Grace. But Ava says she's like her sister, so kind of off limits, and she'll kick my ass if I hurt her. I don't think I'm ready yet anyway. Gonna wait until I can say Violet's name and not be sad. Sort of like how you just said captain and didn't even think about Hook."

Emma's eyes widen in surprise. "Huh. When did you get so wise?"

"With age comes wisdom."

"Right," Emma laughs. "Up for another driving lesson tomorrow?"

"Yes."

"We can also change the oil, check the filter and fan belt. All that fun maintenance stuff."

"Really?"

"It's a big part of car ownership and I'll probably be passing the bug on to you early. I planned on waiting until college but I'll probably have to get a soccer mom car with room for five, two car seats in the back, and side impact airbags."

"Sounds like a family car."

"Definitely a family car," Emma grins. "If that's alright with you."

"More than alright with me." Henry smiles.

"Good to know."

"Ok. I'm leaving now. I will be gone for approximately six hours. I will call before I come home."

"Well that's direct and to the point."

"Someone needs to be," Henry yells as he rides off down the driveway.

Emma watches him until he disappears around the hedges. Then she picks up her discarded shirt, tossing it over her shoulder as she goes inside the garage. She places the ball on a shelf and pushes the button to close the automatic door.

She walks through the breezeway, making sure all the doors are locked behind her and goes through the back door into the breakfast nook.

"Something smells good!" She sees Regina at the stove scooping a sandwich from a pan onto a plate.

"Sit down," Regina orders, indicating one of the place settings at the breakfast table. Emma takes her seat and a long gulp from the glass of ice water in front of her, as she watches Regina place a few more things onto the plate.

She is soon given a grilled cheese sandwich with bacon and tomato, a large pickle, and thinly sliced apple wedges on the side.

Regina sits down with an identical plate and smiles. "I had a craving," she shrugs at Emma's shocked expression. Regina proceeds to pluck Emma's shirt from her shoulder and place it in her own lap as if it is the finest cloth napkin in all the realms.

"Why are you stealing my shirt?" Emma asks just as she sinks her teeth into deliciousness.

Regina inhales deeply and smiles. "No reason," she smirks picking up an apple wedge from Emma's plate and popping it into her mouth. Emma steals back one of Regina's apple slices and eats it.

They finish their lunch in relative silence with only the sounds of Emma's appreciation and Regina's amusement exchanged between them.

Emma finally sits back and downs the rest of her water. "Had a good talk with Henry just now," she says. She refills her glass from the pitcher on the counter and Regina peeks at her ass.

"I did, too." Regina smiles as Emma tops off her water glass and gives her a great view of glistening cleavage.

"If I'm reading between the lines right," Emma says. "I think he approves of us being together."

"He straight up told me he approves," Regina teases.

"Interesting," Emma muses.

Their gazes meet, exchanging silent messages with darting glances toward the stairs and then the table. There is a question and a nod then two smiles as they both rise from their seats and connect with an enthusiastic kiss.

Emma soon renders Regina a writhing mess as she gropes her ass and grinds a muscular thigh between her legs.

Regina breaks the kiss long enough to bury her face against Emma's neck. She inhales, then licks, then bites in time with her thrusts as Emma pulls the hem of her dress up over her hips.

Emma moans as she softly swipes fingers through Regina's soaked core. They both groan when Emma tucks the wet fingers into her mouth, eagerly sucking away the moisture.

Regina makes a sound somewhere between a squeak and a squeal as Emma suddenly sweeps away the remnants of their lunch.

Emma then lifts Regina and gently lays her back on the wood. She kisses her way down Regina's body and tugs off damp panties as she scoots a chair closer and resumes her seat at the table.

Regina keeps a gentle grip on Emma's hair holding her in place as she kisses, licks, and nibbles every inch of flesh her mouth encounters.

Emma glances up and double takes long enough to see Regina has covered her nose with the sweaty basketball shirt. "Are you sniffing my shirt?"

Regina groans. "Your smell gets me wet," she confesses. "Hormones or pheromones, I don't know. But when you're sweaty it intensifies exponentially."

Emma stops listening after the words 'gets me wet' and returns to eating Regina out with gusto and gumption. She snakes one hand up Regina's dress to tease a hardened nipple with her thumb and flicks Regina's clit with her tongue.

Regina's hips begin to thrust erratically and her grip on Emma's hair tightens.

Emma looks up again, admiring what she's done and taking pride in the fact that she can make Regina feel so wonderful.

"Don't stop," Regina orders. "Don't you dare stop."

Emma smiles and continues to flick her tongue against Regina's clit making her twitch. "I love you," she whispers.

"I love you, too," Regina moans. "I love you so much."

Emma sucks Regina's clit into her mouth, and a blast of light and rainbows pulsates outward just as Regina cries out she's coming.

Emma curls her tongue around the tender bud, gently soothing Regina through her orgasm.

Memories flood through her brain just as Regina floods her mouth. She moans as she continues to lick up every last drop while Regina's spasms finally slow to sporadic leg jerks.

Regina opens her eyes, momentarily dazed as she stares at the nook's ceiling. "Holy shit,"she gasps, trying to catch her breath. "I remember."

"Mmhmm," Emma hums as she places a hickey on Regina's inner thigh. "We drank dick potions, fucked each other for hours, and knocked each other up. It happens."

"It does not."

"It does when you have super potent savior sperm. Blasted right through your hostile mucosa and fertilized the first egg it found."

"No, Emma. I drank a potion so I wouldn't get pregnant ever."

Emma's mouth falls open as she pulls away from the newer hickey on the opposite thigh. "Well, shit, Regina. I didn't know it was your choice. You said you had tests done when you got here so I thought you wanted a baby."

"I did. And I got Henry." Regina pushes herself to sit up. "Did you...did you somehow undo the potion?"

"I don't think I undid a potion I didn't know existed and didn't know you had taken. I was sad when you told me you couldn't get pregnant. And I had a thought while fucking you that you would look super sexy carrying my kid. But that was before you told me you couldn't."

"Did you wish it?"

"No...I just thought it."

"Well, that shouldn't have done it then."

"What about the true love thing?"

"What true love thing?"

"Oh you missed the super gay rainbow blast of true love during the biggest orgasm you remembered in two years."

"What?"

"We confessed our love for each other, I sucked your clit into my mouth, and boom! TLC! True Love Cunnilingus."

"Oh, my god. I'm in love with an idiot."

"I love you, too," Emma whispers and kisses Regina's abdomen. They both observe the rays of colorful light pulsating outward. Emma smiles up at Regina. "See? True love plus super potent savior sperm. That explains everything."

Regina smiles and slides down to straddle Emma's lap. "We have true love?"

Emma smiles at the sparkle in Regina's eyes. "We do," she whispers. "I take it we're still good?"

Regina nods and kisses her lips. "That's good," Emma says. "Because I'm ready for the full deal. The minivan, helping Henry choose a college, taking the twins to dance class or sword fighting lessons or both. Maybe putting a ring on your finger if you want that, too. I'll even change my name to Mills."

"I do want that," Regina sighs. "And Swan-Mills is fine. We'll all be Swan-Mills. You, me, Henry, and the two embryos."

"The Swan-Mills family."

They kiss again. A perfect kiss to seal their vows and join their fates officially forever.

Emma clears her throat. "Henry said he'd be gone for six hours and you owe me a true love orgasm."

Regina laughs. "What do have in mind, Mrs. Swan-Mills?"

"We start in my bed and work our way through every room in the house until we get back to where it started. The pool table."

"I love a challenge."

They run up the stairs holding hands.

Chapter Text

Emma and Regina both collapse onto Emma's couch. Having already christened Emma's shower, they are now exhausted from initiating her attic living room as well.

"Get up a second," Regina murmurs, urging Emma to rise enough so she can spin around onto her back. Emma falls again against Regina's chest and begins to tease the nipple she sees, gently poking and blowing to make it erect. Regina traces nonsensical patterns along Emma's spine.

"I'm hungry," Regina whispers into Emma's hair.

"We just ate."

Regina squints at the clock on the cable box across the room. "That was...three hours ago."

Emma groans. "Good thing I have a kitchen up here." She stands up and reaches out for Regina's hands to help her to her feet. "Can't believe we only got two more rooms done in three hours."

"Are you really serious about that every room in the house thing?" Regina asks.

Emma nods smugly. She pulls her unruly hair into a quick top knot and washes her hands. "You want peanut butter and jelly?"

"You eat like a child," Regina retorts. "You do realize this house has 28 rooms, right?"

"What? Are you serious?" Emma searches her pantry. "I have spaghetti fixings."

Regina shrugs at the spaghetti suggestion and watches in amusement as Emma gleefully pulls the box of noodles and jar of sauce from the shelf. "I pay a crew of people to clean 28 rooms every three months, so there better be that many rooms."

"Really? I have Texas toast, too!" Emma squeals pulling the box from her freezer.

Regina shakes her head at Emma's antics. "I also have two people come by weekly to clean the main rooms we live in."

"I've lived here for over a month," Emma says while looking for a pot, pan, and cookie sheet. "And I've never seen anyone come to clean."

Regina admires the view while Emma is bent over. "They come while we're working. Very efficient and dependable. I highly recommend them. Heaven knows we're too busy to do it."

"Then why do we have a chore chart?" Emma side eyes Regina as she puts a colander in the sink.

"Can you imagine the chaos if we just let dishes, laundry, and trash run amuck?"

Emma scoffs while setting out plates and forks. "You just like bossing us around."

"I like order. Plus it teaches Henry responsibility. And I don't want people in my house every day. Bossing you around is just a bonus."

"Well, hop up, madam mayor," Emma says, tapping the island counter. "And I will prepare a feast for you."

"That's not hygienic," Regina protests.

Emma opens the cabinet door under the sink. "Good thing I have a shit ton of household cleaners."

At Regina's negative head shake, Emma gets an idea and pulls a cloth napkin from a drawer. She lays it out like a picnic blanket on the counter and lifts Regina up to sit on it. Then Emma takes the pot to the sink and begins filling it with water straight from the tap.

"Aren't you going to measure that?" Regina asks.

"Why? You just dump it out when you're done."

"At least wear an apron while you cook."

Emma turns the water off and puts the pot on the stove. "I don't have an apron."

Regina points to the broom closet. "Hanging on a hook inside."

Emma saunters over to the closet door, removes a pink, ruffled monstrosity of a bibbed apron and laughs. She slips it over her head and turns around for Regina to tie the sashes behind her back. She then exaggerates bending over to preheat the oven.

"Hmm, my pretty princess," Regina muses, caressing her ass cheek.

"I'd rather be your knight," Emma says, flexing her arm muscles as she open the jar of ragu. "I did swear fealty, didn't I?"

"You can multitask," Regina sighs, caressing Emma's bicep as well.

Emma wiggles her ass as she places garlic bread on the cookie sheet.

"Keep it up, Sir Emma, and I'll bend you over the counter and have my way with you."

"That's the idea, your majesty."

"You just want to check this kitchen off your every room in the house list."

Emma waggles her eyebrows as she opens the fridge. "That's just a bonus. Thirsty?" At Regina's affirmative nod, she removes a bottled water, opens it, and hands it over. Returning to the fridge to get herself a water, she squeals at something else she sees.

Hiding the can behind her back, Emma walks back over to Regina with a wicked grin. At Regina's confused look, she reveals a can of Reddi-Whip, shakes it up, and removes the cap.

"May I?" She asks.

"May you what?" Regina replies.

"One nipple." She raises one eyebrow, waiting for Regina's answer.

"It will be cold," Regina says with a smile.

Emma takes that as a yes. "It will be," she admits, squirting a small amount onto Regina's nipple. "But my mouth will be warm." She licks away just enough to get a taste. Then a little bit more and more until the cream is all gone.

"Can't play favorites," Emma teases holding up the can again. At Regina's amused nod, she squirts another dollop onto the other nipple.

She puts the can down and kisses Regina thoroughly before devouring the cream from her breast. She only stops when the timer buzzes indicating the oven is done preheating.

She takes her time kissing Regina again until she gets gently pushed away.

"Give me food," Regina teases.

Emma smiles and turns back to the stove. She proceeds to break the noodles into the boiling water, slide the garlic bread into the oven, and pour the sauce into a pan.

Regina is appalled that everything is not freshly made and looks away. She picks up the can of cream and reads the ingredients. She's disgusted at the additives. Regardless, she had enjoyed the taste during Emma's kisses and now has an overwhelming urge to upend the can into her mouth for a fresh dollop. So she does.

Emma whirls around at the sound and gasps. "That is so hot."

Regina smirks as she swallows, then watches Emma tend to the noodles and sauce in just her frilly apron. She checks out the fuller breasts peeking out from the sides of the bib and the pointy nipples poking against the thin fabric. "You look tasty," she murmurs. "But I need sustenance. I'm conflicted."

Emma stirs everything once more and checks the bread. "We have a few minutes. We can get a quickie in."

Regina smiles. "A quickie won't do," she teases. "I want to ravish you."

Emma moans.

"Are you wet?" Regina asks.

Emma nods.

"Come here."

Emma steps in between Regina's spread legs as Regina lifts her apron and explores what she finds. Pleased with her discovery, she dips a finger in further, making Emma's breath catch and increase.

Smiling, Regina tugs the bib of the apron over to expose a rosy nipple. She squirts a dollop of cream onto it and licks once. "We'll call this an appetizer," she whispers before cupping Emma's breast, and enveloping the entire nipple with her mouth.

She works her tongue and fingers in tandem, licking and squeezing, sucking and thrusting, quickly stirring Emma up into a crazed frenzy.

Emma, unsure where to put her hands, ends up grasping Regina's thighs in an effort to remain upright. She throws her head back, making that panting noise that Regina recognizes as her I'm-about-to-come signal.

Regina lifts her mouth to Emma's ear, nibbling the lobe, and exhaling hotly against her neck. "I'm going to fuck you every day and in every way for the rest of your life," she whispers as Emma cries out.

The internal grip on Regina's fingers begins convulsing and Regina smiles. "Yes, baby. Come for me," she coos as her strokes continue to milk every drop from Emma.

She finally slides her fingers out of Emma and into her mouth while coaxing Emma's head onto her shoulder. "Mmm, tasty."

"Holy fuck," Emma sighs, trying to catch her breath.

Regina kisses her hair. "You rest," she says hopping down from the counter and gently guiding Emma's head to lie against the surface. "I'll finish the spaghetti."

Emma watches as Regina drains and plates up the pasta, places two slices of garlic bread on each dish, then sets food, drinks, and whipped cream on a lap tray.

Regina double checks all heating elements are turned off then leans over Emma's shoulder. "You can check this kitchen off your list."

"How did you know I was counting rooms in my head?"

"I know you. Now come to bed and carb up, pillow princess. You're going to need the energy."

***

Chapter Text

"Emma! Re-Gina?!"

Two sets of eyes spring open in confusion. They stare at each other, silently asking what the fuck is going on.

"What is going on?"

Emma winces as she recognizes the voice and Regina starts laughing. They both sit up, momentarily letting the sheet slip revealing their nudity.

"Oh, my god!"

"Mom?"

"Hello, Snow."

"What is going on?" Snow asks again.

"Um...well."

"You see, Snow. When two people care about each other in a special way, they sometimes like to express that love in a physical way."

"You are such an ass," Emma laughs.

"You love my ass."

"I really do."

"I'm still here," Snow interrupts.

"Yes," Regina bites her lip as she stares at Emma. "Why is your mother here, Em-ma?"

"She hasn't explained that yet."

"You gave her a key?"

"I did...yes...for emergencies only...which this is...not...so...?"

They bother turn to Snow who has turned a deep shade of crimson.

"Why are you here, Rose Red?" Regina demands.

"Such an ass," Emma whispers.

"I have been calling you both all day! No one has answered! You're voicemails are full. Henry said you were fine and not to bother you, but that was hours ago!"

"You spoke with Henry?"

"It was a quick text. He was going to the library. Hours ago!"

"My phone is on vibrate," Emma says, rubbing her eyes. "Wherever it is."

"Mine is turned off," Regina says. "Since we are officially still on medical leave until Monday morning. I assumed that in the event of a town emergency, David would be notified since he is on call at the sheriff's station."

"I really should find my phone," Emma says, searching around for a shirt to slip on. "Henry said he would call before he came home."

"Is there a town emergency, Snow?" Regina asks.

"No..." Snow starts.

Regina then stares Snow down until she turns around so that Emma can get out of bed to find some clothes.

Snow turns her back to the couple and continues her explanation. "It's just...Um...we were waiting to tell you...until your doctor cleared you...that, uh...we know..."

"You know what, Snow?"

"We know that you two are..."

"Pregnant?"

"No. Well, yes, obviously we do know that. It's just we also know that you two are...together."

Regina watches as Emma slips a shirt over her naked body and laughs. "Has your mother hit her head recently?"

Emma pulls her hair out of the shirt and sits back down on the bed. "I don't know. Mom? Have you recently sustained a head injury?"

"You're both assholes," Snow answers.

"So you know we're together and you what? Snuck in here with your key to see what two women do in bed?"

"No! I got worried when you wouldn't answer your phones! You were in the hospital less than a week ago. Excuse me for being concerned."

"You could have called the landline."

"We have a landline?"

"Yes. There is a phone on each floor."

"Where? I've never seen one?"

"I find them aesthetically unpleasant. Three are in drawers. Yours is on the desk in your office."

"That red rotary phone? I thought that was a batphone joke."

"I am still here," Snow comments. "And I forgot about your landline. I'm not even sure if I have the number."

"Right. So you barged into Emma's bedroom to catch us napping."

"No! Well, I did catch you napping. But that's not why I barged in here. I came to tell you that we know. Everyone knows. We suspect you've been given a forgetting potion, we are investigating who could have done that. And Zelena is conducting a separate investigation in case taking the potion was your choice and researching to find out how you could have gotten pregnant."

"Oh, we know that," Regina smirks.

"Yeah," Emma stammers. "We have...magic..."

"Emma...You don't want to tell your mother all the juicy details?"

"We have true love magic! That is all you need to know!"

Snow whirls back around. "You have true love? Why didn't you tell anyone?"

"Yes. Well...We were drunk the first time..."

"I guess we missed the rainbows..."

"Or we just thought it was gay..."

"Then we took that forgetting potion...and forgot..."

"Remind me to never do that again..."

Snow clears her throat. "How do you remember that you took a forgetting potion?"

Regina smiles. "True love--"

"--Kiss!" Emma interjects. "True love's kiss broke that spell."

"Best kiss ever..."

"It really was..."

"Why are you two blushing?"

"What time is it anyway?"

"We really should start thinking about dinner."

"Are you hungry again?"

"I'm pregnant. And I worked off all that spaghetti and whipped cream."

"I'm out of here," Snow says, heading for the door.

"Mom?" Emma says. "Are you okay with this? Really okay? With us?"

"Yes. Yes, of course. Perfectly fine. My best friend is gay. Or bisexual. Or...She hasn't really told me how she identifies...but I have no problem with that at all."

"Are you sure?"

"Yes. It did take a little while to get used to the idea of my oldest friend and my child..."

"Oldest?"

Emma laughs at the expression on Regina's face.

"Longest friend. I've known you the longest. But I'm good now. You two are really perfect for each other. And the more I thought about how much you've been through, both individually and together, the more it just seemed so obvious. And I wondered why I hadn't seen it before. So, yes. I am more than okay with this."

"Good," Regina says. "Because you and Charming will need to write and publish an engagement announcement in the paper. We will need to proofread it first, of course. We will apply for a marriage license later this week. The wedding will be 40 days after the announcement. We will be married here. The back yard will be lovely. We will have both a modern ceremony and a traditional handfasting, just to cover all of our bases. Legal and binding in all states, lands, and realms."

Snow's mouth hangs open.

"I won't ask you for Emma's hand because she's a grown woman and that's just asinine. Plus, she proposed to me, so it isn't necessary. Guest should wear whatever they are comfortable wearing, modern or traditional, as long as it's formal. We will wait at least 30 more days to officially announce the pregnancies. That should put us at around 17 weeks. Probably starting to show by then."

"Is that all?"

"Since we're both women, I don't think a dowry is necessary or even appropriate...but if the peasants revolt or demand it...I'm willing to pay off the mortgage on your farm."

"Regina! What the hell?"

"I really want to do that anyway. It's only $50,000 and you'll save twice that much with the interest on the 30 year loan you have."

"Oh, my god."

"You can put your monthly payments in a 529 college plan for baby Bae instead."

"Don't we have a kid of our own to put through college soon?"

"Oh, Henry is all set for college. I've been saving and investing for that since his adoption came through. You could go to college, too. If you want. You can take a year off to be with the babies. Two years. Forever. You can go back to being sheriff as soon as the doctor says you can. You can change careers. Whatever you want. Don't ever worry about money. We have it covered."

Now it is Emma's turn to stare in shock.

"Is that all?" Snow repeats.

Regina thinks for a second. "Yes. At weddings, it's traditional to throw rice for fertility. Since we're both already pregnant, that's not necessary. And it's really bad for the birds and small animals who end up eating it. If people wish to throw something, we will provide little sachets of bird seed instead."

Snow rolls her eyes and Emma gets hearts in hers.

"Are you done now?"

"Um, Emma gets to pick the cake. And the food. Her baby has me craving everything she likes anyway."

"Really?"

"Yes. I had a bearclaw for breakfast, Emma. A bearclaw. And that spaghetti was surprisingly good. A little bland but better than I expected."

"Ok, I'm leaving. Congratulations. I'll tell your father."

"Where is dad?"

"Downstairs. He didn't want to come up in case you guys were..."

Regina snorts.

"I wonder if he found your panties under the table," Emma whispers.

"Good bye!" Snow says waving a hand behind her as she heads for the door. "You have about an hour before Henry comes home."

Regina smiles and finally gets out of the bed, revealing the harness she'd still been wearing the whole time.

"Oh, my god," Emma laughes as Regina steps out of it and kicks it under the bed.

"Come along," Regina says as she heads toward the kitchen. "You can go down on me while I sit on your desk and eat peanut butter and jelly sandwiches and prank call your mother from the batphone."

Chapter Text

Chapter 13

Emma tinkers away at the piano keyboard, painstakingly working her way through 'Chopsticks,' much to Regina's consternation. Regina is double checking lists on yellow legal pads and cross referencing them with websites on her laptop. Various bridal magazines and baby furniture catalogs are scattered across the couches and tables of the living room.

"Can you or Henry play this thing?" Emma asks as she finishes 'Chopsticks' and moves on to a butchered version of 'Smoke on the Water.'

"We are supposed to be finalizing wedding plans," Regina replies while confirming an order with Game of Thorns and marking off the last item on Emma's list. She smiles at Emma's wish that her bouquet be 'made of the flowers like the one I gave you in the kitchen that day.'

"The wedding plans are done," Emma counters. "All we need to do now is repeatedly call everybody on that list the week of and boss them around."

"Okay," Regina says, putting down one legal pad and picking up another. "Then we really should get started on plans for the nursery."

Emma starts poking her way through Brahms Lullaby. "We have plenty of time for nursery plans, babe," she turns to give Regina a seductive look with a quick head nod toward the piano, "But we only have forty-five minutes before Henry gets home."

Regina removes her glasses and shakes her head, giving Emma an amused look. "We are not having sex on the piano, Emma. I don't care about your Michelle Pfeiffer 'Fabulous Baker Boys' fantasy."

Emma scoffs, feigning offense. "It's my Julia Roberts 'Pretty Woman' fantasy, thank you very much."

"Either way, it's not happening. We're not taking any more chances since the dining room incident."

"That was weeks ago. And Henry didn't even see anything. We were covered up with a tablecloth."

"It was a lace tablecloth, Emma."

"Kid needs a cow bell or something."

Regina puts her glasses back on and picks up a catalog.

Emma huffs, accepting her sexless future, then goes back to the Deep Purple classic. "So can you or Henry play this thing?"

"I played some in the old world. Henry had lessons for awhile. He was much more interested in listening than he was in playing. He stuck with it long enough to learn a few songs and how to read music. Or how to 'decode' music as he called it. Said it was an important skill to have after he watched 'The Goonies'. He is definitely your child."

Emma smiles with pride. "These are pretty much the only songs I can kind of play. But I can play 'Smoke on the Water' on piano, guitar, harmonica, and the most hated instrument of every parent of fourth graders in America, the recorder."

"Oh my god, I heard offkey 'Mary Had a Little Lamb' in my sleep for weeks. I finally convinced Henry the acoustics were best in the basement, then I would hide out in the attic for his hour of practice."

"That bad?"

"He improved over time."

Emma laughs at Regina's unwillingness to directly criticize their son's lack of musical talent.

"I was staying in this one foster home during part of my recorder days, where the foster mom's brother was always passed out on the couch. And he would get mad and yell every time I tried to practice. So I'd have to sneak off somewhere, the roof, the playground, where ever, to do it. Which was fine by me. The more I was out of the house, the better. You know?"

Regina rises from the couch, drops her glasses to the table, and moves to sit beside Emma on the piano bench. She leans her head on Emma's shoulder, encouraging Emma to continue her story.

"One day, one of the other girls begged me not to go. She said the 'uncle' would try to touch her and stuff when I was gone, but he would leave her alone if I was there. I saw red. She was a sweet kid, not much older than me. Kind of shy. I was just standing there by the back door with my recorder in my hand and I suddenly had so much rage inside me, I didn't know what to do with it.

"But I took a deep breath, walked over to where he was sleeping, put the recorder right next to his ear, and blew the loudest, longest, highest note I knew. He jumped up screaming and I ran out the front door. He chased me down the street, in his underwear, yelling about how he was going to kill me, and I ran right into a cop walking his beat. It was like fate or something."

"That is a horrible story, Emma."

"No, it's not. The guy was arrested. A few other girls came forward with similar stories, so he did some time. The foster mom allegedly didn't know about the touching but since her brother wasn't even supposed to be there, she lost her license anyway for leaving us with him while she worked. It was horrible for the girls he touched, but I got that shy kid out of a horrible situation. I was a fourth grade badass."

"Still, at that age you should have been learning how to transition from a trot to a canter on your pony, not outrunning pedophiles."

"Don't, Regina. All of my experiences, good and bad, made me who I am today. And despite whatever supposedly happened in that crazy wish land, it's my past that gave us Henry. And I have no regrets."

"It did give us Henry." Regina repeats with a sigh.

"And besides... singing, princess Emma wasn't your favorite version, remember?"

Regina makes a groaning sound in the back of her throat. "I do like you with a sword, Emma Swan."

"Really?"

" Mm hmm."

"Since when?"

"Since always. Even that first time you held one, when you had no idea what you were doing, you still radiated confidence and determination. It was very sexy. I thought a lot about that after Henry was safe and about how you promised him you'd protect me. My knight in red leather."

"I knew you liked me in my red jacket."

"I like you out of it, too. You have great arms."

"So my sword and my arms turn you on? You wanna go upstairs? We can go to my room and I'll give you a private sword dance."

"You know a sword dance?"

"Yeah, Mulan taught it to me way back. Said it's a good training exercise. But I can slow it down...make it sexy."

"Can you do it while wearing your jacket?"

"You can't see my arms if I'm wearing that but sure."

"Wearing only your jacket?"

"Oooh, of course."

"And maybe...one other...accessory...?"

"You kinky motherfucker..."

They lean into each other and kiss passionately for several long minutes. Until Emma pulls back slightly and pleads, "Can we at least make out on the piano? We still have about half an hour..."

"Yes," Regina answers. "You kinky motherfucker."

Emma scoops Regina up into her arms and gently sets her down atop the piano. She slowly slides Regina's dress up her thighs, spreads her legs, and steps in between. They resume kissing as both sets of hands grope the other's ass.

Regina's feet and Emma's thighs occasionally hit the keyboard, filling the air with random nonsensical notes.

"MOMS! Again?!"

They both turn their heads to see Henry standing in the doorway. He quickly turns his back to them but doesn't run away.

"Shit!" Emma pulls Regina's hemline back to where it should be and helps her down from the piano.

"Henry," Regina says with fake calmness as she gently wipes her lipstick off Emma's mouth. "You're home early."

"Did you guys learn nothing from the dining room incident?" Henry asks over his shoulder.

"Yeah," Emma snarks. "We're both still fully dressed."

Henry turns back around to find his mothers in different moods. Emma looks frustrated while Regina blushes and avoids eye contact.

"On the piano?!" Henry's voice cracks slightly. "You won't even let me set a drink on the piano with a coaster but you get to sit up there like Jessica Rabbit?"

Regina looks confused as she repeats the name and Emma curiously whispers "Is she real?"

"Just get a hold of yourself," Regina whispers back with exasperation.

"Why are you home early, kid?" Emma huffs.

"Practice got rained out."

They all turn to the window and the mothers suddenly notice a steady downpour.

"How does basketball practice get rained out?" Emma asks. "It's in the gym."

"It wasn't official basketball practice. It was just me and Ava practicing her lay ups and hook shots while I blocked and quizzed her about rules...at the outdoor court."

"You guys can do that here. We have a hoop."

"It isn't regulation height and the court is closer to Ava's house."

"Well, why didn't you call when it started raining, honey? We would have picked you up."

"Ava's dad gave us a ride. I didn't think it would be a big deal since you guys were supposed to be working on wedding and nursery plans. And since that whole dining room...thing..."

"We did finish the wedding plans," Regina sighs.

"We were just...taking a break," Emma says, clearing her throat. "Before we got started on the nursery."

"Well I'm glad I caught you," Henry shakes his head. "I mean...before you started on nursery plans... because I have a presentation."

The mothers look at each other, mouthing "presentation?" while Henry sets his backpack on the coffee table and removes a drawing pad. He flips pages until he finds what he wants and then motions toward the couch.

"Please, sit down."

Emma and Regina walk over and sit back on the couch. Emma wraps an arm around Regina's shoulder while Regina places a hand on Emma's leg. They look amused as Henry holds up a hand drawn sketch of floor plans to the second and third floors of their house. Each room is appropriately labeled.

"This is the current configuration of room assignments. Mom has the master bedroom, Emma has the attic, and I have this room back here. I am suggesting that the babies take my room and I..." He flips to the next page of another floor plan sketch with the rooms labeled differently. "I take the attic."

"My man cave?" Emma whispers.

"Henry, that's been your room since you were a baby."

"Exactly," Henry answers. "Because it's the nursery."

"I need my man cave," Emma protests.

"My room is the closest to the master bedroom which, once I move into the attic, you two will be sharing. This way either one or both of you can reach the babies more quickly in the middle of the night instead of walking all the way down the hall."

"I need my man cave," Emma repeats.

"Emma, I get it. Mom has her bedroom, her bathroom, her study, her kitchen, she even has her vault. I get wanting a space that is just your own."

"I object," Regina interrupts. "I consider the kitchen a shared space."

"Sure," Emma says. "As long as we're only getting a bowl of cereal or making cold sandwiches, but if I mention grilled cheese or brownies and even look at the stove that vein on your forehead pops out."

Regina gives Emma an angry look which prompts Emma to whisper into her ear about some other times when her forehead vein pops out that she enjoys very much, making Regina smile and blush slightly.

"Can you stop romanticizing mom's forehead vein, please? It usually means I'm grounded."

Regina elbows Emma softly making Emma lean back against the couch again.

"Now, back to my presentation. I anticipated Emma's objection to giving up the attic just yet. Even though you two are living together, getting married, having babies, and sleeping together every night. The separate bedrooms thing is still weird."

"You just said you got it."

"Anyway," Henry flips to the next sketch with rooms labeled differently yet again. "Plan B is... I take the guest wing."

"The whole guest... wing?"

"Yes, the front guest room which is bigger than my current room, the bathroom that I already use, direct access to the back stairs to the kitchen and back door, and I want to make the second guest room into my very own man cave."

"We were going to turn the second guest room into the nursery."

"I know but I'm a writer. I need a space to work, a space to keep my reference materials, and a space to do research. A space where I won't get distracted by video games and comic books."

"Oh my god. Regina, our baby is growing up."

"But where will the guests sleep?"

"Who besides Emma has ever spent the night here?"

Emma tries to suppress a laugh while Henry rolls his eyes.

"We could possibly invite your grandparents for a holiday gathering or something. Possibly."

"Grandma and grandpa can sleep in whatever bed you two aren't sleeping in that night. And I want a futon in my man cave anyway. Uncle Bae can sleep there or on the fold out couch in Emma's living room. Corresponding accordingly to wherever grandma and grandpa are sleeping. I also want a microwave and a mini fridge. And a new laptop."

"You don't ask for much, do you, kid?"

"I don't think it's too much. It would go a long way towards making up for the pain and suffering of seeing your bare ass and mom's boobs."

"It wasn't bare! We were covered with a tablecloth!"

"A lace tablecloth."

"Enough! Henry, I appreciate all of the thought and time and effort you've put into this presentation. Your mother and I will discuss it. But I don't want to hear another word about the dining room incident unless you've actually been traumatized and we are all in group therapy with Archie."

"I'm sorry, moms. I'm not traumatized. Archie says most kids walk in on their parents at some point. Usually when they're much younger though. Sometimes before they even know what sex is and that's what can be traumatizing. I at least know what sex is, and that you guys are in love and not hurting each other."

"We're sorry, too. And we have been more careful."

"That's true, Kid. We were just kissing and that was all we were planning on doing."

"We just weren't expecting you home so early. You usually call when you have a change in plans."

"I will definitely call every time from now on," Henry promises as he flips the page over to another floor plan. This one of just his old room and the room beside it. "I have one more sketch. The babies can have the two back rooms. I figured you could put their cribs and clothes in my old nursery. And all the toys, tummy time mats, bouncy chairs, and swings in my old playroom. And if when they're older, they decide they want separate bedrooms, they'll already have two rooms. They'll just have to flip a coin to see who gets which room and you guys can redecorate with whatever they're into by then."

"Good save, kid."

"I'm going to go upstairs and take some measurements just in case you decide in my favor. Good night, moms."

"Good night, kid."

"Good night, sweetheart."

The women watch as their oldest child grabs his backpack and goes out the door. They listen to his footsteps going up the stairs, then as soon as they hear the guest wing door close, they burst out laughing.

"Oh my god.." Regina whispers.

"Holy crap. Corresponding accordingly? When did he learn big words?"

"He's a writer and he does a lot of research. I was very impressed with his presentation, though. He made some strong arguments about putting the nursery in his old room."

"Yeah, I agree. So what do you think? Attic or guest wing?"

"I think he only suggested the attic as a negotiating tactic. Demand the thing you know you won't get to make the thing you really want look like a reasonable request."

"You think he really only wants the guest wing?"

"That's where he's taking measurements."

"Sneaky little bastard."

"I think he also wanted to work you up because of the dining room incident."

"Why just me? We were both naked."

"You were the one doing the thing...with the thing...on the table...to his mother."

"He doesn't know about the thing...does he?"

"I don't think he saw passed your lily white ass."

"My lace covered lily white ass, thank you very much. I still think he needs a cow bell."

"Now I want cheese."

"You're in luck. I have Cowbell upstairs. Come with me, my queen. I shall dance for you and feed you cheese."

They both run up both flights of stairs.

Chapter Text

Chapter 14

Emma and Regina are sitting on the floor in Henry's old room, which is now void of furniture. They have spent the day directing Henry and his friends on the removal of the beds and dressers from the guest rooms, and on where to move Henry's bed, dresser and chest in the front guest room, and his desk and bookshelf in the second guest room.

There is a legal pad and a plate of mini pigs-in-a-blanket between them and bottles of water nestled between each of their legs. They are trying to get a start on nursery plans while Henry and his friends celebrate his first official evening in his new rooms.

"It's a good thing Henry likes the colors of the walls in both rooms," Emma says before taking a drink of water. "Saves some time and money on painting."

Regina smiles and nods. "He told me he's framing maps of the different realms that he's getting from Gold and hanging those up in his bedroom. I told him they should go in his man cave instead, and he informed me that he'll have backup copies on his laptop for reference. The prints in his bedroom will be purely decorative."

They both smile over their growing boy and sigh. Then Emma looks confused. "What is Mr. Gold's first name? He's Henry's grandfather and I have no idea. Everyone either calls him Mr. Gold or just Gold. I think Belle is the only person who calls him Rumple."

Regina suppresses a laugh. "It's Mister."

"What?!" Emma asks incredulously.

"One of the conditions of me casting his curse was that he wanted respectability and power here. So I made his false identity's name be Mister. If you ever pull him over for speeding, you'll see it on his license."

"Oh my god! That's so funny! I'd probably call him Rumple if I was Belle, too."

They both laugh before each grabbing the last two pigs-in-blankets on the plate.

"What are we supposed to do with the old guest room furniture?" Regina asks between bites of the food she unexpectedly loves. "We can't just leave it all in the foyer."

"We could put an ad in the paper," Emma says. "'Bedroom furniture for sale. Never slept in. Only fucked on once.'"

Regina gives her an annoyed but amused look. "Or...?"

"We could have a yard sale."

"A what?"

"A yard sale. Or a garage sale. Rummage sale. You know? Put everything we don't want anymore in the drive way, people come by and haggle over prices until you practically give the stuff away. And then whatever doesn't sell, you donate to charity."

Regina picks up the legal pad and writes 'Donate guest room furniture to charity' while Emma laughs.

"Don't want the neighbors thinking we're hard up for cash?"

"I have no desire to 'haggle.' Sounds unpleasant."

"It's just negotiating. You'd be good at it. Probably raise our asking prices in the process."

"Sounds like a hassle I would rather avoid. I just want to concentrate on the wedding and the nursery. Making everything perfect for our new life together."

Emma gushes and leans over for a few sweet kisses. "Okay," she says when they finally pull apart. "The wedding is in the bag. So let's get back to the nursery. We will need to change the wallpaper."

Emma writes 'remove wallpaper' on the list while Regina gets misty eyed as she gazes at the now bare walls. There are small rips in the paper from the tape and glue Henry used to hang his fairy tale pictures. It will definitely need to be replaced.

"Henry picked out this wallpaper when he was four. When he got his big boy bed."

"Awww," Emma smiles at any mention of Henry's early childhood. "Was he in a crib until he was four?"

"Of course not. He had a toddler bed, he just outgrew it. So I got him his big boy bed and his big boy furniture. And he picked out the wallpaper."

"What kind of wallpaper did he have before that?"

"Baby ducks."

"Awww."

"I had his crib and then his toddler bed over where his desk was. His dresser where his big bed was. It had a changing station on top of it until he outgrew that. His chest was over where he had his big boy dresser. And his toy box was where we're sitting. And he had a rug that looked like a pond with lily pads... to go with the baby ducks. I replaced that with a road map type rug for his toy cars when he got his toddler bed. He still had that rug rolled up under his bed. I had no idea."

Emma reaches over and holds Regina's hand. "Thank you for giving him the life I couldn't."

Regina smiles. "Thank you for making the hardest decision ever that gave me the opportunity to do so."

Emma laces their fingers together and smiles. "I'm not sure if I've ever said it before, but thank you for the memories of raising him. Some are kind of vague and fading now but I still have most of them."

"Thank you for bringing him back."

"Oh my god!" Emma says, fighting back tears. "We are so sappy! Can we get through this without crying?"

"Probably not. We're both emotional and have pregnancy hormones running through our veins. But...We shall see."

"Okay. Well, we don't know yet if the babies are boys or girls or one of each, so what kind of colors or themes are you thinking about?"

"I was thinking white furniture and some gender neutral colors for the walls."

"What colors are gender neutral?"

"Green... yellow... purple..."

"All colors are gender neutral if you don't care what people think. But that sounds good."

"What does?"

"White furniture and purple and yellow... stuff. Purple for your magic and yellow for my car."

"You are so cute."

"We can work out shades and patterns after we look at more catalogs," Emma says as she looks over to where Henry's crib used to be. "Are we going to have two cribs or one big one?"

"I think two cribs. I would worry too much about them rolling on top of each other. We should probably have two of everything anyway or they'll fight."

"Fight? That's not until they're like two years old or something. Right?"

"I'm sure they'll fight way before that. And they'll be in toddler beds by then."

"Seriously?"

"They get toddler beds as soon as they can climb out of their cribs."

"They can climb out?!"

"Eventually."

"Oh my god."

"I was thinking for the first few months, before they can roll over or scoot, we can have those co-sleeper bassinets attached to both sides of our beds. And keep diapers and wipes on the nightstands. That way we can just nurse them and change them and go right back to sleep."

"You want to nurse them?"

"Do you not want to?"

"I don't know... I haven't thought... oh, my god... Regina! We're having babies."

"Yes," Regina replies with confusion. "I know."

"Babies...," Emma takes a deep breath. "Babies we get to keep..." Tears start streaming down Emma's face.

Regina immediately scoots over and hugs her tightly. "Are you alright?"

"Thank you, Regina," Emma whispers between sobs. "We're having babies we get to keep... just... Thank you so much."

Regina continues to embrace Emma as she cries, reassuring her that she'll be great with the babies. "You are going to be the best momma, Emma. You'll get the hang of baby wrangling in no time. And we'll be together. You won't have to do anything alone. We'll be team moms. Everything will be fine. They'll grow up knowing they are wanted and so very loved. It'll be perfect. Just like you always wanted."

Emma snuggles against Regina's chest as her tears start to dry up. Regina wipes at her wet face with a gentle thumb. "All good, now?"

"All good," Emma whispers.

They hug and cuddle and kiss for a little while until Regina's phone rings. She digs it out of her pocket and answers, only to hear her sister's frantic voice and an ungodly screeching in the background.

"Zelena?! What's happened?!"

"Your niece is having the mother of all tantrums is what's happening."

"What? Why?"

"Snow and I brought the children to get fitted for their little flower girl and ring bearer outfits. Robin took one look at Neal's tux and started screaming about unfair."

"IT IS UNFAIR!" Robin loudly interrupts Zelena's explanation.

"What's unfair?" Regina asks as she puts her sister on speaker.

"That 'cousin-uncle' gets to wear pants while she has to wear a dress just because she has a 'bagida.'"

"Bagida!" Emma begins to cackle at the mis-pronunciation.

"It's not funny!" Zelena snarks. "She's really upset."

"Does she not want to be flower girl?" Regina asks.

"She wants to be flower girl. She does NOT want to wear a dress."

"Does she want to wear a tux?" Emma asks.

"Robin!" Zelena bellows. "Do you want to wear a suit just like cousin-uncle's?"

"YES!" Robin yells. "Yay! I'm getting a suit!"

Regina gives Emma a 'what the fuck' look while Emma shrugs and explains, "I didn't like dresses either when I was a little girl."

"Fine," Regina sighs. "Zelena, tell the tailor to make another tux for Robin. And to order her some black shoes, too."

"Oh, she loves the red shoes that went with the dress. Calls them her Dorothy shoes. Even though I told her Dorothy's slippers were actually silver. But does she listen to me? The wicked witch, who was actually there? No. I will hate you forever for giving her that movie."

"She can wear the red shoes with the tux," Emma says. "It's fine. They'll match the tie and vest. It'll be cute."

"Is she still okay with the updo?" Regina asks.

"Yes," Zelena sighs. "But probably not the baby's breath or any ribbons."

"A ponytail or braid is fine," Emma says. "Just keep her happy so she doesn't make any of those noises during the wedding."

"Thanks, sis," Zelena gushes. "Love you. Ta."

"Ta," Emma mumbles as the line goes dead.

Regina gives Emma a look. "Is that how you're going to be with our little ones?"

"What?"

"Just give them whatever they want? No matter what?"

"Um, yes? I would have gotten a spanking if I threw a tantrum like that. I don't want to spank them. Maybe I'll learn better tactics as I go but that was my first tantrum. Besides, Robin had a good point. She shouldn't have to wear a dress just because she has a bagida. Hell, I thought about wearing a suit myself. A flower girl in a tux isn't that big of a deal is it?"

"No," Regina sighs. "You're right. It's just things won't be even now and I like symmetry. We had Henry and David and Neal in their tuxes. And Zelena and Snow and Robin in their dresses. Now the wedding party will be off balance."

"I'm sorry" Emma teases. "I didn't hear a thing after you said 'you're right.'"

"Smart ass."

Emma pulls Regina into a hug and whispers against her hair. "It'll be fine. I'm wearing a dress, so it will still be four dresses and four tuxes. Robin's keeping the red shoes. So all of their shoes will still match. And once you come down those stairs in that gorgeous gown, no one will even remember the pants-wearing flower girl. All eyes will be on you. Mine most of all. And I'll get to tell the whole world how much I love you. And we'll say our vows and we'll exchange our rings and it'll be the perfect day. Just like you planned."

Regina takes a deep breath, holds it for a few seconds, then exhales slowly.

Emma watches her with concern and admiration. "All good, now?"

Regina nods. "All good."

"Want to get back to the nursery plans?"

Regina shakes her head no.

"No?"

Regina shakes her head again.

"What do you want to do?"

Regina smiles and whispers, "If you show me your bagida, I'll show you mine."

Emma is kissing a prone Regina on the hardwood floor within two seconds.

Chapter Text

Emma is skirting around the stuffy rooms of her overcrowded house. She smiles and nods at the many well-wishers who stop her too frequently offering their congratulations between bites of cookies and sips of punch.

Finally seeing a moment when no one is looking, she seizes the opportunity to slip into the library unnoticed, then sags against the closed door. Hearing someone clear their throat, she looks up to see Regina sitting behind the desk.

"Here you are!" Emma says. "I can't believe you abandoned me to face the masses alone. Why are there so many people at a rehearsal? I can understand all the decorators and caterers getting everything set up for tomorrow. But why are there guests here? When did the rehearsal become a tea and cake party? I thought it was just supposed to be the wedding party and the officiant."

The worried look that Regina casts in Emma's direction immediately puts Emma on high alert.

"Are you okay?" Emma asks. "Is the baby okay?"

"I'm fine. The baby's fine," Regina answers with a sigh.

"Then what's wrong?"

"I have something to tell you and I don't know how to say it."

"Shit. Are you breaking up with me? The wedding is tomorrow!"

"I'm not breaking up with you."

Emma sighs with relief. Then gasps. "Did someone die?"

"No. Not that I'm aware of anyway."

"Well, I know you didn't cheat on me."

Regina shakes her head.

"So what else could have you this upset? Did Hook come back? Because you don't have to worry about him at all. That ship has sailed. Literally. Pun intended."

"No. Hook didn't come back."

"Well, that's all of my worst case scenarios. So whatever you have to tell me can't be all that bad."

Regina begins to speak and stops a few times.

Emma walks around the desk, wheels the chair sideways, and sinks to her knees in front of Regina. She takes Regina's hands into her own, kisses the sparkly engagement ring, then smiles. "Take a deep breath."

Regina inhales.

"Let it out."

Regina exhales.

"Tell me."

"I don't want to have penetrative sex for a while."

"Ok."

"Ok?"

"Yeah, ok. Is that it?" Emma sits back on her heels and lets out a long relieved breath. "Jesus, woman. You scared the crap out of me. I thought this was some life or death shit."

"Ok? You're just...okay with that?"

"Of course. I've noticed you haven't suggested it for a while. And you've been distracting me with other activities whenever I brought it up. I figured it was making you anxious about the baby, so I've stopped trying to initiate it. It's fine."

"But you enjoy it so much."

"Yeah, but only when you're enjoying it, too. Baby, I don't want to do anything that gives you even one second of doubt or worry."

"I know it's a silly thing to worry about. I asked our OB/GYN about it, and she said it was perfectly safe. It still makes me nervous to think about it lately. I don't know why."

"Your feelings are never silly. So put that thought out of your head, alright?"

"Alright."

"Why all the worry about telling me though? You've never been shy before about letting me know what kind of sex you want."

Regina shakes her head and shrugs. "I don't know. I kept putting it off even though you seemed to know somehow anyway. Now you'll be going to your parent's after the rehearsal and tomorrow is our wedding night. This is the last time to state it clearly without...ruining the mood."

Emma gives Regina a reassuring smile and caresses her face. "You could never ruin the mood. I stay horny for you."

Regina returns the smile and kisses Emma's engagement ring.

"So," Emma ponders. "No penetration, huh? Just for clarification...are we talking just toys or fingers and tongue, too?"

"Just toys," Regina says, then looks off to the side in confusion. "Maybe fingers."

"Alright. Toys and fingers are out. As long as I can still lick your clit and tickle your butthole, I'm good."

Regina bursts out laughing and slaps at Emma's hands. "You are so... crass!"

"Yeah, but you still love me."

"I do. I love you, Emma."

"I love you, too. And for future reference, please try not to worry about telling me stuff like this. Anytime you want me to stop doing anything, say the word and I'll stop. I'm not marrying you for sex. It's an awesome bonus but it's not why I'm here. When we're very old and very grey that part of our lives will eventually fade and I'll still be just as excited to fall asleep in your arms then as I am right now. And I'm assuming this is temporary until after the babies are born, but even if it's permanent, it's not a deal breaker. It doesn't change how I feel about you. I love you so much. You're my best friend, Regina. And I am the happiest I have ever been in my whole life. You, Henry, and the babies... this is it for me. My life can't get any better because... you... and everything you've given me... you are my happy ending."

"You're my happy ending, too," Regina says before grabbing Emma's shirt and pulling her forward for a deep kiss.

They kiss for several long minutes until Regina gasps and pulls away.

"What is it?" Emma asks.

Regina puts a gentle hand on her abdomen and smiles. "I think I felt the baby."

"Really?"

"I felt a little flutter. Like a flip or a flop... I don't know how to describe it. I've never felt anything like it before."

Emma can't hold back her smile. "That's the baby alright. We're what? Thirteen and a half weeks now? Fifteen and a half if you go by that stupid first day of your last period guideline."

"The doctor said it could happen any time now. Oh my god, it felt wonderful!" Regina suddenly grabs Emma's hand and places it under her own. "There she goes again."

"She?" Emma teases.

Regina shrugs. "Did you feel it?"

Emma shakes her head then leans down and whispers against Regina's belly. "Hello, baby! Wiggle one more time for momma..."

Regina laughs and leans her head against the back of the chair while Emma continues to cajole their baby to move once more.

Snow suddenly opens the door, and seeing Regina reclining against the chair and only the top of Emma's head in her lap from the other side of the desk, gives a surprised yelp.

Regina turns her head in Snow's direction and Emma lifts her head to peek over the desktop.

"For god's sake!" Snow chastises. "You guys have a house full of people! Emma! Get up off the floor, and you've ruined your lipstick! What were you thinking?"

Emma looks at Regina who places a shushing finger against her lips. Emma's mouth drops open in shock. The look in Regina's eyes tells her to let Snow continue to think what she thinks.

"Sorry, mom," Emma says, wiping the edge of her mouth with her thumb. "Just couldn't help myself."

"Honestly," Snow gruffs. "I'll give you five minutes to get cleaned up but then we have to get this rehearsal started."

Emma gives her mother a two-fingered salute. "Yes, mom. Be right there, mom."

A red faced Snow shakes her head and goes back out to the foyer. Henry can be heard saying "I told you not to go in there," just as the door closes.

The brides laugh hysterically for a long time and are almost late for their own wedding rehearsal.

Chapter Text

Regina is in her bedroom inspecting her reflection in the mirror. Her eyes are sparkling and she cannot suppress her smile. She can't help but notice the huge contrast to the last time she wore a wedding dress.

She admires the frame-hugging gown from all angles, happy with her choice to wear white. The fact that Emma loves the dress just as much as she does, reinforces her belief that she made the right decision.

Zelena has just left the room to help Robin line up for the wedding procession. She had also helped Regina with finishing touches to her hair and make up. She had opted to keep her natural curls in a loose up do with a crystal baby's breath barrette holding her locks in place. Her makeup is flawless, with the smoky eyes that Emma likes, and her red lipstick is the same shade as Emma's dress.

She feels the now familiar flutters in her belly, as the baby makes her presence known once more. She turns sideways to admire the barely noticeable bump. She wonders if anyone will notice the changes in her figure or if Leroy even managed to keep their pregnancies a secret.

A gentle knock on the door echoes quietly seconds before Snow pokes her head inside.

"Oh, Regina!" Snow gushes. "You look beautiful!"

"Thank you."

"Are you nervous?"

"No. I'm ready to be married."

Snow's smile is genuine as she hands Regina her bouquet. "I just want to say that even though you take great delight in giving me fake details of how you defile my daughter, I consider you one of my very best friends and I take great delight in becoming your mother-in-law. And I couldn't be any more proud than I am right now that you are the mother of my grandchildren."

Regina laughs. "We've come a long way."

"You've come a long way. You've worked so hard and you deserve this happiness."

"Go away, Snow, before you make me cry."

Snow laughs and turns toward the door. "The music will start in just a couple of minutes," she whispers before exiting.

Regina's gaze returns once more to her reflection, her smile even bigger than it was before.

Outside the door, Snow looks over the balcony and gives a thumbs up to David who is standing next to the library. David gives a quick nod, then turns and knocks on the door.

He turns the knob after hearing permission to enter and finds his daughter leaning against the desk as she adjusts one of her high heeled shoes.

"I'm glad I don't have to wear those stilts," he comments. "I would fall flat on my face."

Emma straightens up and takes a few steps. "I should have practiced walking more," she mumbles.

"Well, you only have to walk to the bottom of the stairs, then to the dining room, and then right back in here where you can take them off again."

"You think Regina will let me go barefoot during the reception?"

"I don't see why not. She let you wear a leather wedding dress."

Emma laughs. "'Let' isn't the right word. With the dozens of hints she threw at me about this dress being her favorite, she practically ordered me to wear it. Good thing I love it, too."

"It's an interesting choice."

"She said it reminds her of my jacket and that night I stumbled up her sidewalk and said hi. Plus it shows off my arms."

David laughs and flexes his bicep. "You got those from me."

"Thanks," Emma laughs. "Maybe if I flex them enough, she'll let me put on some flats after the pictures."

David smiles and takes Emma's hands into his. "I'm not sure what kind of fatherly advice I can give you."

"Little too late for the birds and bees talk."

"I was going to tell you 'happy wife, happy life,' which is my philosophy. But I'm not sure how that works when you're both the wife."

"Maybe if we keep each other happy, we'll have a great life together."

"And you got your mother's brains."

"Mom's brains and dad's brawn. Winning combination."

"Regina's a lucky woman."

"Thanks, dad."

David kisses his daughter's cheek. "The music is gonna start soon. I'm gonna go line up."

"Okay."

Emma watches David leave and takes a deep breath. He's left the door open, so she walks close enough to the exit until she can see the balcony outside Regina's bedroom. She remains just inside as the first few notes of piano music waft through the air. She sees Regina's door open and her gaze never leaves floor above.

In her peripheral vision, she notes little Robin leading the procession down the stairs, one hand on the banister, the other clutching her little basket of flower petals. But her eyes stay glued to the balcony.

After Robin is joined by Neal at the base of the stairs and escorted out of her line of sight, she finally sees Regina emerge from the bedroom and her heart skips a beat. She's a vision in white. She realizes she has never seen Regina in all white before and decides the wait was worth it. She barely notices her mother descending the stairs, when Regina's gaze meets her own.

They tear their eyes away from each other only when Henry steps into view and waits at the bottom of the stairs, then escorts Snow toward the dining room. Their eyes meet once again when he's out of sight and their smiles grow instantaneously.

Emma's mind goes blank and she's confused when Regina shakes her head and chuckles. She realizes she is absent-mindedly lip syncing the words to the song. She decides to go with it and continues to silently serenade her bride the song they had butchered during karaoke that night months before.

"...there were nights of endless pleasure...it was more than any laws allowed...baby, baby..."

Emma points to her belly and then to Regina's at the "baby, baby" and they both smile softly. She notices that Zelena is now coming down the stairs and Regina blows her a kiss as she steps out of view to take her place at the top of the stairs. She watches as David meets Zelena at the bottom of the steps and escorts her away.

Just as Celine starts singing "...when I see you like this...when you see me like that..." Emma steps out into the foyer and Regina steps around the curve on the landing. "...we see just what we want to see...all coming back to me..."

Their eyes lock again as Emma waits and Regina slowly walks down each stair.

Memories flash through Emma's mind of waking up on a pool table and of Regina teasing her "it'll come back to you" when she couldn't immediately recall all of the events from the previous night.

She remembers the true love's kiss on the breakfast table, when all of the memories of that drunken night and the next day came back to them both.

She mouths the words "...it's all coming back to me now..." as she meets Regina at the base of the stairs.

The song ends just as Regina takes her arm.

Emma whispers, "You are the loveliest bride I have ever seen."

Regina smiles and says,"Likewise."

The bridal march begins as they turn toward the dining room where all of the guests are seated in rows of white chairs. They slowly walk toward the dining room, that slow one step one step wedding walk, and Emma tries not to wobble in her shoes. They stop when they reach the floral arch inside the doorway.

The officiant rises from his seat in the front row and walks around them. He turns to face the guests while Emma and Regina turn to face him. Their hands automatically reach for each other as he begins to speak.

"We have come together the witness the marriage of Regina and Emma, to pray for blessings on them, to share their joy, and to celebrate their love. Marriage is a gift through which Regina and Emma shall know grace. It is given that as they grow together in love and trust, they shall be united in heart body and mind. The gift of marriage brings Regina and Emma together in the delight and tenderness of sexual union and joyful commitment to the end of their lives. It is given as the foundation of family life in which children are born and nurtured, and in which each member of the family in good times and bad, may find strength, companionship and comfort, and grow to maturity in love. Marriage is a sign of unity and loyalty which all should uphold there of. It enriches society and strengthens community. No one should enter into it lightly or selfishly but reverently and responsibly. Regina and Emma are now to enter this way of life. They will each give their consent to the other, and make solemn vows, and in token of this they will each give and receive a ring. We pray with them for blessings, for strength, and for guidance, that they may fulfill these vows for the whole of their earthly life together."

Emma gives Regina a wink and Regina squeezes her hand.

"First I am required to ask anyone present who knows a reason why these two persons may not lawfully marry, to declare it now."

Everyone looks around and after no one says a word, looks back to officiant.

"The vows you are about to take are sacred, therefore, if either of you knows a reason why you may not lawfully marry, you must declare it now."

Emma and Regina both look back toward their attorney, Kathryn, who gives them a thumbs up. They turn back to the officiant and smile.

"Emma, will you take Regina to be your wife? Will you love her, comfort her, honor and protect her, and forsaking all others, be faithful to her as long as you both shall live?"

"I will."

"Regina, will you take Emma to be your wife? Will you love her, comfort her, honor and protect her, and forsaking all others, be faithful to her for as long as you both shall live?"

"I will."

"Will you family and friends of Regina and Emma, support and uphold them in their marriage now and in years to come?"

"We will."

"Regina and Emma, I now invite you to join both hands and make your vows."

The pair turn to face each other and reach for the hands they weren't already holding.

"I, Emma, take you, Regina to be my wife. To have and to hold from this day forward, for better, for worse, for richer, for poorer, in sickness and in health, to love and to cherish til death do us part."

"I, Regina, take you, Emma, to be my wife. To have and to hold from this day forward, for better, for worse, for richer, for poorer, in sickness and in health, to love and to cherish til death do us part."

The officiant motions for the rings and Neal steps forward with his little pillow.

"Let these rings be to Regina and Emma a symbol of unending love and faithfulness, to remind them of the vow and covenant which they have made this day."

Emma removes a ring from the pillow and places it on Regina's finger.

"Regina, I give you this ring as a sign of our marriage, with my body I honor you, all that I am I give to you, and all that I have I share with you."

Regina takes the other ring from the pillow and places it on Emma's finger.

"Emma, I give you this ring as a sign of our marriage, with my body I honor you, all that I am I give to you, and all that I have I share with you."

"Now cross and rejoin hands."

Regina and Emma grasp their hands together, left in left and right in right, as if in greeting. The officiant places a long black silk cord over their joined hands, letting each end hang down low on either side, before continuing.

"These are the hands of your best friend, young and strong and full of love for you, that are holding yours on your wedding day, as you promise to love each other today, tomorrow and forever. These are the hands that will work alongside yours, as you build your future together."

He places a red cord over the black cord.

"These are the hands that will passionately love you and cherish you through the years and with the slightest touch, will comfort you like no other. These are the hands that will hold you when fear or grief fills your mind. These are the hands that will countless times wipe the tears from your eyes, tears of sorrow and tears of joy."

The officiant now places a white cord atop the black and red cords.

"These are the hands that will tenderly hold your children, the hands that will join your family as one. These are the hands that will give you strength when you need it, support and encouragement to pursue your dreams, and comfort you through difficult times. And lastly, these are the hands that even when wrinkled and aged, will still be reaching for yours, still giving you the same unspoken tenderness with just a touch."

The officiant loops the cords below Regina and Emma's hands, then places the ends of each side in both of their palms. At his nod, the brides grasp the cords and pull their hands backward, watching as the cords form an intricate knot.

"Regina and Emma have given their consent and made their marriage vows to each other. They have declared their marriage by the joining of hands, and by the giving and receiving of rings. By the power invested in me by the state of Maine, I now declare them wife and wife. Those who have joined together, let no one put asunder. You may kiss the bride. Brides."

Emma and Regina share a sweet kiss that grows slightly beyond g rated as everyone cheers. When they pull back slightly, the two fall into a full body hug until the officiant announces that the brides and two witnesses need to go with him to sign the marriage certificate.

Regina leads him and Emma, along with Snow and David, to the library. She motions for Kathryn and Tinkerbell to join them. As Regina walks passed Henry she grabs his hand and pulls him into the room as well.

"What's going on?" Henry asks. "You only need two witnesses and yesterday you said I was too young to sign."

"I can explain," Kathryn begins. "The long version goes like this. We all recognize Emma as Henry's mother here in Storybrooke, but outside the town boundaries, she has little legal rights to him beyond the non-romantic co-parent custody agreement that Emma and Regina filed a few years ago. If Henry should decide to go to college outside of Storybrooke and God forbid have an accident, there is the possibility of doctors or a hospital disputing her rights to make medical decisions for Henry. And that's not good enough for anyone. Now when the circumstances of their relationship changed a few months ago, Regina asked me if it was possible for Emma to adopt Henry after they were married and if that would give Emma full legal, medical, and educational rights over Henry."

"You did?" Emma asks in shock.

Regina nods.

Emma and Henry exchange smiles and then wrap their arms around Regina.

"The short answer is yes," Kathryn continues. "It is possible for Emma to adopt Henry. Step parent adoption is a fairly simple process normally. But Emma's situation is unique in that she is also Henry's birth mother. We are assuming that since Who's Your Mama dot com was able to unseal closed out of state adoption records and to find Henry's original birth certificate, that the state of Maine will also be able to do so. Therefore we need to be as open and honest as possible during this adoption application but at the same time not reveal the true origins of the town. There will be background checks, home visits from social workers, character witness interviews, etcetera. And we all need to pull together to make this adoption happen."

Everyone nods in agreement.

"But first things first. This marriage certificate is the start of the whole process. All signatures must be your legal identities here in Storybrooke. So no Snow White. No Prince Charming. This is a legal document that needs to stand up during court rulings."

"Wait," Emma says. "Is the city clerk going to sign it Tinkerbell?"

"Relax, toots," Tink says. "I legally changed my name to Tina Katherine Bell."

"Tina K. Bell," Regina whispers. "Tinkerbell. Clever."

"I still go by Tink here among us, but if someone slips around an outsider, it's a believable nickname."

Emma smiles and nods a silent thank you to Tink before Kathryn continues.

"This adoption process will also set a precedent for the expected babies. Both Emma and Regina's names will appear on the birth certificates since they are now married, but they will each need to adopt the baby they do not give birth to in order for both of them to have full legal rights over both babies. And ultimately all three children."

"I was wrong," Emma whispers to Regina."What I said in here yesterday...my life can get better."

They lean closer for a few sweet kisses until the officiant clears his throat and hands them each a pen.

"Please, sign here."

Chapter Text

Several long hours after the wedding, Emma is tired of the lingering guests in her house and is ready to kick everyone out. The cake has been cut, the bouquet thrown, and the garter flung. Yet most of the guests still remain.

All she can think about is the moment she was on her knees with her hand up Regina's dress to remove said garter. She'd innocently whispered in Regina's ear enquiring if her panties matched the garter. And Regina had whispered back 'what panties?' And that was too long ago and Emma thinks everyone needs to leave already so she finally bed her wife.

Regina sees Emma's growing frustration and casually asks Zelena what time it is. Zelena catches on quickly and loudly exclaims, "Time to go, cockblockers! You don't have to go home but you can't stay here!"

Snow chokes on her champagne, spraying David's face and the back of Neal's head, who is asleep in his father's arms.

All of the guests quickly make their exit, wishing the newlyweds one more congratulations as they walk out the door. Henry leaves with his grandparents. Zelena is the last to go as she scoops up a sleeping Robin from the living room couch. She whispers rather loudly, "Don't say I never did anything for you."

When the door is finally locked, Emma turns to see Regina standing at the top of the foyer steps. "How would you like a glass of the best apple cider you've ever tasted?" Regina teases.

"I think you know what I'd like to taste," Emma answers.

Regina grabs the lapels of Emma's dress and pulls her forward for a deep kiss, then pushes her back. She saunters toward the library, her hips swaying as she looks over her shoulder at Emma and opens the door.

"Did you think about it that first night?" Regina whispers.

"Hell yeah," Emma answers. "That night and every night since."

"Every night?" Regina tilts her head and enters the library.

"Every night," Emma replies and follows Regina through the door.

"Even with...?" Regina walks toward the clock above the mantle and looks back at Emma.

Emma nods. "Sometimes during...it was the only way I could...get off."

"Interesting." Regina walks back toward Emma, passing by rather closely as she makes her way to the couch.

"I'd close my eyes and pretend it was you with a strap on...except you were never that bad."

"Really?" Regina asks as she innocently sits on the couch and spreads out the skirt of her dress.

Emma nods. "Had to help myself along all the time...I may have said your name more than once..."

Regina shakes her head. "He couldn't have liked that. No wonder he hated me."

"Why are we talking about him? He's history. Long gone. Never coming back again."

"Just making conversation."

"Well, all I want to do is make you come."

"What's stopping you?"

Emma sinks to her knees. Never breaking eye contact, she snakes her hands beneath Regina's dress, eases the fabric up passed Regina's knees, then her thighs. She finally caresses the bare flesh of Regina's ass and moans, "You weren't lying."

"I would never lie to my wife."

Emma uncrosses Regina's legs and pulls her knees forward, then apart. She finally lifts the white silk above Regina's waist and gasps as if she's found hidden treasure. "Been sugaring, I see."

"You like?"

"Bare or mad bush, doesn't matter. I like...I wonder if it made you sweeter..."

Emma dips her head down and swipes her tongue over Regina's sensitive flesh. Regina moans and arches reflexively, making Emma grab her hips to hold her somewhat still.

Emma licks and nips and dips every inch of Regina, her mouth chasing gyrating hips. She pulls back slightly and teases Regina's clit with her thumb.

"You never answered about tongue, baby."

"What?!" Regina demands. "Don't stop!"

"You said no toys and no fingers...but you didn't say no tongue...can I tongue fuck you, baby?"

"You fucking better!" Regina growls.

Emma sinks her tongue inside as far as she can and Regina groans and grabs her head. Her tongue pistons against Regina's rolling rhythm, while her thumbs continue to tease Regina's clit and ass.

Regina's squeals rise in pitch and frequency so Emma picks up speed.

"Fuck, fuck, fuck," Regina repeats like a mantra, her head rolling back and forth.

Emma hums as Regina's back arches and her ass lifts up off the couch. She revels in the undulating spasms around her tongue as Regina orgasms.

Regina finally falls back to the couch and Emma gently licks up much of the mess she's created.

"Oh, dear," Regina mumbles. "I seem to have ruined my dress."

"Shit, I'm sorry."

"Don't be. It was worth it. I guess I should take it off now."

Regina stands up and pulls the shoulders of her dress down her arms, revealing her bare chest as her dress slips further down.

"No bra, either?" Emma moans.

The dress falls to the floor and Regina steps out of the silk heap wearing only her heels and a smile.

"Holy fuck," Emma sighs and begins to pull her own dress open.

"Oh, no," Regina says. "You keep your dress on."

"What?"

"You got to fuck me in my dress, it's only fair that I get to fuck you in yours."

"Holy fuck...!" Emma repeats.

"It is now...our fucks are now within the bounds of holy matrimony."

Emma chuckles. "I love you."

"I love you, too." Regina grabs Emma's hand and leads her out the door and toward the stairs. "Come with me," she teases. She climbs the staircase, exaggerating the sway of her hips with each step, knowing Emma hasn't taken her eyes off of her ass since she turned around.

Emma is mesmerized by the display until they reach the bedroom door.

"Wait right here," Regina orders. "Give me two minutes."

Emma whines and counts one Mississippi one hundred and twenty times, then opens the door.

Her mouth drops open when she sees Regina standing beside the bed wearing a new accessory.

"I got you something new and something blue," Regina teases.

"You said no toys?"

"I said I didn't want to be penetrated. You never said you didn't want to be, and that hardly seems fair. But I worry just as much about the baby inside you as do about the baby inside me. So I was conflicted. Then I found this toy that I think we can both enjoy and it doesn't penetrate either one of us."

"Oh?" Emma moves closer to get a better look. "Looks like a butterfly."

"Mm hmm, and it vibrates."

"Ahh, I see."

"I've been thinking about it all day. All week actually. You riding me in that dress, my hands free to touch you everywhere."

"Fuck yeah."

"Are you wet, Emma?"

Emma nods her head as Regina steps toward her then sinks to her knees. "Forgive me if I check for myself."

Emma shrugs letting Regina do whatever she wants to do.

Regina caresses Emma's thighs while lifting the hem of her dress up just enough to reach her panties. She swipes between Emma's legs and hums with delight at what she finds.

She lifts the leather a little further to reveal black lace and smiles up at Emma. "Silk and satin, leather and lace, black panties with an angel's face," she croons, silly lyrics from their karaoke night that stuck in her head.

Regina pulls Emma's panties down and lets them fall to the floor, then slides her fingers between Emma's legs again. She moves her fingers back and forth until they are drenched, then licks them clean. She repeats this process several times until Emma wobbles with dizziness.

Regina smiles and leans forward for a taste, just enough to tease and make Emma swoon.

"I think you're ready," Regina whispers as she guides Emma to the bed.

She lies back, instructing Emma to straddle her and line up their centers with the Venus butterfly between them.

"Do you need lube?" Regina asks as Emma gives a few tentative rocks forward and back along the silicone.

"I think I'm good," Emma answers.

Regina takes Emma's hands and places them on her breasts.

"Oh, God. Yes!" Emma sighs.

Regina holds onto Emma's ass, thrusting up occasionally as Emma gets a good rhythm going.

When Emma's moan and groans keep growing higher and higher, Regina slides a finger down the crack of Emma's ass until she reaches the button on the toy and switches it on.

Emma squeals as the vibrator comes to life.

Regina suddenly sits up and pulls the front of Emma's dress and lace bra to the side exposing her breast. She immediately takes the nipple into her mouth and sucks.

The shift in position causes the tip of the butterfly to vibrate against Emma's clit, which creates a chaotic reaction. Emma's body jerks erratically. Regina holds her pelvis in place as her limbs continue to flail.

The vibration stimulates them both and the next thing Regina knows, she's on her back again with her heavily breathing wife on top of her.

"Holy fuck," Emma gasps.

Regina reaches down and switches off the vibrator, then wraps her arms around Emma.

"It is now."

Chapter Text

Regina is sitting on the living room couch framing newly arrived wedding portraits and trying to decide where to hang them around the house. She's wearing a tank top under a long sleeved flannel shirt with leggings and Emma can't stop staring at her. Her hair is in a messy bun, glasses perched on her nose, and Emma thinks she's the prettiest thing in the world.

"You're the prettiest thing ever," Emma says.

Emma is sitting on the floor just outside the living room doors, surrounded by an open box of baby crib parts. An identical unopened box is leaning against the wall behind her, a basket of folded laundry is on the bottom stair.

Regina looks over at Emma, in her sweatpants and oversized Storybrooke High White Knights basketball t-shirt, and winks. "You're adorable," she whispers.

"Stop flirting," Henry yells from the lower foyer steps. "I'm still here. I can hear every word you say."

The women laugh and roll their eyes.

"What time is Ava coming?" Emma asks.

Henry opens his text messages and says, "She left three minutes ago."

"Please don't text Ava while she's driving," Regina says.

"I didn't. I just checked what time she texted last."

"That's good. You should invite her to stay for dinner before you go play basketball. After she gets here, of course. Not through a text."

"Yeah, it's baked spaghetti night," Emma says. "The carbs will be good for her."

"Too much cheese. She thinks she has a lactose thing. We're getting burgers at Granny's."

"Ohh," Emma whines. "That sucks. We should invite her on regular spaghetti night. I'd literally die if I couldn't eat cheese."

"You wouldn't die," Henry snarks.

"I would cry myself to death."

Henry starts dribbling his basketball but stops when Regina asks.

"Where is my tool bag?" Emma asks.

"It's in the garage where the tools go. And it would be easier to assemble that in the babies' room. That way you won't have to carry a bulky crib up the stairs."

"I'm not putting it together. I'm assessing the level of difficulty and making sure I have all the right tools. We really should keep some household tools in the house. Like if you want me to hang those pictures for you, I won't have to go all the way over the river and through the woods to get a freaking hammer."

"The nails are already in the walls, I'm just taking down old pictures and hanging up new ones. And the garage is part of the house."

"A far away part of the house. We should keep some tools handy. Like in the front closet."

"That closet is for coats and boots. I don't want to clutter it up. Guests can see inside it when we hang up their things."

"The closet in the kitchen then?"

"That's for cleaning supplies."

"You can't make room on one shelf for one little tool bag? Make it a cleaning and maintenance closet?"

"Maybe."

"Yes!"

Henry starts dribbling the ball again. "That counts as flirting," he says over the sound of bouncing.

"Does not. And stop bouncing that ball in the house," Emma says.

"Does, too," Henry answers as he continues to bounce. "You made goo goo eyes at Mom and she gave you the you're-so-cute-when-you-beg look. And as soon as I leave, you're going to be all over each other and you'll probably burn the spaghetti."

"You can't even see how we're looking at each other. And stop bouncing that basketball. You've seen the Brady Bunch. You'll break your Mom's favorite vase."

"The only thing out here is a marble umbrella stand. It isn't going to break. And the Brady Bunch threw a football. Not a basketball."

"The football broke Marcia's nose outside, the basketball broke Carol's vase inside. And there are windows in the foyer. Just stop bouncing the ball like your mother asked!"

There's suddenly a loud a knock on the door. Henry stops bouncing the ball while Emma and Regina look at each other in confusion.

"Since when does Ava knock?" Regina asks.

"Since when does she come to the door again?" Emma says. "She's only honked at the curb since she got her license."

Henry looks out the window beside the door. "It's not Ava. It's some lady."

Emma and Regina stand and start to straighten up their messes. They definitely were not expecting company on a Saturday afternoon.

"Should I let her in?" Henry asks. "She's already seen me."

"Yes, of course," Regina answers.

"Wait," Emma says. "What if she's a new big bad?"

"We haven't had any trouble since the black fairy," Regina whispers loudly. "And they never came knocking on our door before. The odds are against it."

"Ok. Henry, see who it is, but stall them."

Emma scrambles to put the crib parts back in the box while Regina stacks up pictures and frames on the coffee table.

Henry opens the door and pokes his head through the opening. "Hello. Can I help you?"

"Hello. I'm looking for Emma Swan-Mills. Does she live here?"

"Yes, she's my mother. May I ask your name?"

The lady gives Henry a business card. "My name's is Bertha Wiley. I'm a social worker with Children's Services. I'm here concerning an application for adoption."

"Of course. Won't you come in?" Henry opens the door further, allowing the woman to come inside. "My name is Henry. Nice to meet you. Can I take your coat?"

"Yes. You have a lovely home."

"Thank you. It's a colonial revival..."

Henry does his best to stall the lady at the entry while Emma and Regina hurry to make the living room and themselves more presentable. They whisper fight and decide against using magic to clean up in case the 'muggle' sees it.

"We are a mess," Regina hisses as she rolls down her long sleeves and buttons the cuffs.

"You look very cute," Emma says while straightening Regina's shirt collar and buttoning up the front. "I love it when you wear my clothes."

"She could have at least called. This is a power move, catching us off guard like this."

"It's very fast, too. I wasn't expecting a response for at least another few weeks."

"It's a power move," Regina repeats.

"Please, follow me," Henry says as he leads the woman through the foyer and into the living room and hands the business card to Regina. "These are my mothers. Regina and Emma Swan-Mills. Moms, this is Bertha Wiley from Children's Services. She's here about Emma's step parent adoption application."

"Nice to meet you," Regina says while shaking hands. "I apologize for the mess. It's errand day and we weren't expecting company."

"It's fine. I've seen much worse."

Emma shakes her hand and asks, "Can we get you something to drink? Coffee? Tea?"

"Hot chocolate, if you have it."

"I'll get it, mom. Cocoa for everyone?"

"Thank you, Henry."

Henry steps out to the kitchen while Regina directs everyone toward the sitting area. Emma and Regina take the couch as their guest settles into one of the chairs. She notices the wedding pictures on the table and says they're beautiful.

"Thank you," Emma and Regina say together.

"When was the wedding?"

"Last month," Regina says.

"Oh, newlyweds. Where did you honeymoon?"

"Here," Emma says. "Henry stayed with...friends for a few days and the two of us just sort of hibernated."

"Sounds cozy."

"It was," Regina says.

"It was great," Emma adds.

"I couldn't help but notice the boxes of baby furniture. Is someone expecting?"

"Oh," Emma stammers. "We both are."

"That's a unique situation. How did that come about?"

"They drank a magic potion and shared true love's kiss," Henry says as he returns with a tray of hot chocolate. "I however was found in a cabbage patch."

Everyone laughs as Henry sets down the tray and distributes drinks.

"They actually did the IUI at the same time," Henry says while sipping his cocoa.

"IUI?"

"Intrauterine insemination. It increased the odds of at least one of them conceiving. We certainly did not expect them both to get pregnant on the first try."

"Oh my."

Emma and Regina look at each other in amazement.

"I've been wondering," Henry continues, "since the babies were conceived at the same time, if they're born on the same day, will they be considered twins?"

"I'm not sure..."

"The babies share DNA, so they're biological siblings. It's just that I've read about fraternal twins who have one mother and two fathers. And they're still considered twins. Wouldn't the reverse situation have the same result?"

"I don't think that's how it works, but it's food for thought."

"I'm going to call them my twin sisters even if they aren't born on the same day."

"Oh, are they both girls?"

"We don't know yet. It's just a feeling I have."

A car horn beeps from outside and Henry turns to his mothers. "That's Ava. I forgot to text her that we have company. Should I tell her to come back later?"

The social worker says, "I do need to speak with you separately if it's alright with your parents, but I need to speak with them privately first."

"I'll give you a few minutes alone then. If you'll excuse me."

Henry returns his cup to the tray, leaves and closes the doors behind him. Emma and Regina have been giving each other amused smiles the whole time and watch Henry leave with visible adoration.

"Well, I am impressed," the social worker says.

"Really?" Emma asks.

"The house is a mess," Regina says. "We are a mess."

The woman waves a hand in dismissal. "It's temporary clutter. I can tell the house is immaculate. No, I'm talking about Henry. He's charming, intelligent, well mannered."

"That's all thanks to Regina. I've only taught him about cars and basketball."

"That's not true. You've taught him how to be brave and to stand up for himself and others."

"He was already brave when I met him. Ten years old and he hopped a bus to Boston all by himself...oh, shi...oot..."

"He ran away?" The social worker pulls a tablet from her briefcase, accessing Henry's case file.

"We had a bit of a rough patch," Regina says. "After Henry found out he was adopted."

"He found me through some website. God knows how. All of the records were supposed to be sealed. But he showed up on my doorstep, begging me to come home with him. And I've pretty much been here ever since."

"So you moved in right away?"

"No," Emma laughs.

"We did not get along at first."

"I stayed at the inn for a few days, then I moved into a friend's spare room. I lived there for a long time."

"And when did the relationship become romantic?"

"That was...almost a year a later," Emma says.

"Was it that long?"

"Yeah, Henry was eleven."

"So you've been together for four? Four and a half years?"

"Not exactly," Regina sighs.

"We had more of an...open...understanding..."

"We didn't want to hurt Henry in case things didn't work out."

"We we just kept it..."

"Friends with benefits?" the social worker asks. "On the down low?"

"Oh my god..." Emma facepalms herself.

"That's better than what you called it that one time," Regina teases.

Emma places a hand on Regina's knee begging her to be quiet.

"Relax," the social worker says. "Adult relationships can be complicated. It's commendable that you tried to protect Henry from a situation he was too young to understand."

"Thank you," Emma and Regina say together.

"I see where you filed a non-romantic co-parenting custody agreement a few years ago."

"Yes."

"And did you decide that was needed after Emma kidnapped Henry and took him to New York for a year?"

"She didn't kidnap him!"

"So you were in New York as well?"

"No..."

"According to Henry's school records, he spent most of seventh grade registered at a middle school in Manhattan under the name Henry Swan. That was with your knowledge and consent?"

"Yes."

"May I ask why you sent your son away for almost a year?"

"There was someone from my past...someone dangerous. They had no knowledge of Henry or Emma. So to protect them both, I sent them away until it was safe to return."

"Did you remain in contact?"

"No."

"And how did you let them know when I was safe to come back?"

"I sent a mutual acquaintance to find them."

"A Killian Jones?"

"Yes..."

"Who found Ms. Swan and then sexually assaulted her?"

"He WHAT?!"

"He kissed me and I kneed him in the junk," Emma explains.

"And had him arrested for assault," the social worker adds.

"That absolute degenerate!"

"Calm down, babe. It was years ago."

"Why didn't you tell me?"

"I don't know. There were more important things going on at the time. I guess it slipped my mind."

Regina sighs and Emma squeezes her hand.

"What happened to the dangerous person from your past?"

"They're no longer a threat," Regina states.

"And Killian Jones?"

"Is no longer around," Emma says.

"I also see from Henry's school records that he has several extended periods of absence."

"We've gone out of town a few times."

"Without Regina again?"

"No," Regina says.

"So you take family vacations together?"

Emma and Regina look at each and silently decide that 'family vacation' is the best way to describe trips to Camelot and the Underworld.

"Yes," Emma says.

"Henry always made up all of the work that he missed and he's taking advanced classes now. Some worth college credit. He's even talking about graduating early and taking a gap year before he starts college."

"Is that something you're seriously considering?"

"That's more Henry's wishful thinking," Emma says. "He could graduate early but I want him to go straight to college. Once you get out of the habit of going to school, it's hard to go back."

The social worker taps on her tablet opening a file on Emma. "Yes, I see where you dropped out of high school at age sixteen, and I understand you acquired your GED while in prison?"

"That is a sealed juvenile record!" Regina rages.

"Is this an interview or an interrogation?" Emma asks.

"Omitting information sets a precedent of dishonesty. So Henry was born while you were in prison?"

"Does it matter where he was born?"

"It matters that Emma neglected to include it in her application."

"It's a sealed juvenile record! She was just a kid whose boyfriend gave her a stolen watch. But that's possession of stolen property and she served 11 months for it. She's had a clean record ever since. She's the sheriff here."

"So she wasn't arrested for DUI and destruction of city property?"

"The charges were dropped. Her blood alcohol level was .001. It was dark and rainy. She was tired and swerved to avoid an animal in the road. It was an accident. It takes a lot more than two sips of hard cider to get her drunk."

"So she has a high tolerance to alcohol?"

"She is sitting right her," Emma interrupts. "And I'm not an alcoholic. We used to have some cider sometimes when Henry wasn't home. A few beers now and then. But we haven't had anything since we got pregnant and neither of us even miss it. I didn't have cravings or go through withdrawal symptoms. It's a non-issue."

"And the prison sentence? Were you guilty of the charges?"

"Yes, I knew the watch was stolen. I also knew he was planning on selling the other watches so we could run away to Tallahassee. But because I was honest and the police felt sorry for me, they dropped the conspiracy charge which saved me three years."

"You seem to still have a lot of resentment after all these years."

"I'm resentful that sealed records don't seem to stay sealed. I was 17. My arrest and Henry's adoption were supposed to be sealed by court order."

"Your juvenile records are still sealed as far as I know. I obtained that information from an article in the Daily Mirror by Sidney Glass."

Regina gasps and Emma sighs.

"You're good, lady," Emma says. "Very sly. So have we blown this whole application?"

"Not so far. You've been very forthcoming when asked about sealed information."

"Seems unethical," Regina states.

"Perhaps. I only have the best interests of the child in mind. Speaking of whom, I'd like to talk with him now if that's alright."

"Why do you need to speak with him?" Regina asks.

"To make sure he's happy and healthy and wants to be adopted. He's old enough to have a say in these proceedings."

Emma turns to Regina. "Is that alright with you?"

"Yes, of course."

"Are you alright?"

Regina shrugs. Emma lifts Regina's hand and kisses her knuckles before getting up to find Henry.

Upon opening the door, Emma notices the crib boxes and laundry basket are gone. "Henry?"

"I'm in the kitchen."

Emma follows her son's voice and finds him at the kitchen island slicing vegetables.

"What are you doing in here?"

"I took the baked spaghetti out of the oven and now I'm making the salad."

"Where is all the stuff that was out there?"

"I took the cribs to the nursery and put the clean clothes away. I also put the wet sheets in the dryer and folded the towels."

"Thank you. I think your mother and I forgot all about dinner."

"She'll smell it in a minute. Does the lady want to talk to me now?"

"Yes."

"How is it going?"

"I'm not sure. She's tricky. She knows about my unfortunate incarceration and your bus trip to Boston."

"Wow."

"Yeah, she's clever. So be careful."

"I'm clever, too."

"Yes, you are. And you are a really great kid. I'm so glad we found you in the cabbage patch."

Chapter Text

Emma and Henry return to the living room, finding Regina and Ms. Wiley in the middle of an intense stare off.

"Hello, again," Henry says. "You wanted to talk to me?"

"Yes," Ms. Wiley answers. "If it's alright, I'd like for you to show me your room."

Henry looks over to Regina, who looks over to Emma, each silently asking the other if that was indeed alright.

"Did you make your bed this morning?" Regina asks.

"Yes, ma'am."

"It's fine then, I suppose. Your mother and I will be right down here."

Henry leads the social worker up the stairs as Emma and Regina fall into each other.

"This is really beautiful," Ms. Wiley comments as they round the curve in the staircase.

"Thank you," Henry answers, then begins to point in different directions. "Mom's room is across the way, the nursery is back through there, and my rooms are through here."

"Rooms?"

"Yes. My bedroom, my bathroom, and my study."

They walk into Henry's bedroom. It is mostly tidy, with the bed made and a few comics lying on it.

Ms. Wiley walks around, inspecting a few dust free surfaces with her finger and nodding with approval.

"You like maps?" She says, pointing to the walls.

"Yes."

"Quite a variety of fictional lands. Oz, Neverland, Camelot, Wonderland..."

"I like to read."

"No Narnia or Middle Earth?"

"I have others in my study."

"Okay. Do you have any pets?"

"I have a horse."

"Really?"

"Yeah. A quarter horse I call Sir Galahad."

"Very nice...no dogs or cats?"

"No. My...Mom's friends David and Mary Margaret have a dog. And sheep."

"Sheep?"

"Yeah, they have a farm. I help out there sometimes. And my therapist has a dog. He runs away a lot. They need more work and attention than I thought. With two babies coming and my last few years of high school, plus scouting colleges and all those tests, I wouldn't have time for another pet."

"You're in therapy?"

"Not so much anymore. I used to go every week after I found out I was adopted. Now I just call him up whenever I want to talk."

"And what do you talk about?"

"Doctor patient confidential things."

"Touche." Henry's leans against the dresser, his eyes following the woman as she walks around and looks out each window. "Were you surprised when your mothers got together?"

"Not really. I thought it would happen a lot sooner than it did. They had a secret...thing...for a long time."

"You knew about it?"

"Yeah. I never saw or heard anything inappropriate. Just them asleep and spooning in mom's bed really early in the morning sometimes. I thought they were having sleepovers like girls do, and that was just how mom cuddled in her sleep. That's how she hugged me when I was little and went to her room after bad dreams. But one morning there were bare shoulders above the covers and Emma's shirt was on the floor. Kind of an a-ha moment for me. I was just a kid."

"You call her Emma? Not mom?"

"Only when I'm talking to other people. So they know which mom I'm talking about."

"I see."

"I've been calling her mom since I was eleven."

"Can I see your study?"

"Sure. This way."

Henry leads them across the hall to his study/man cave. He points out his desk and bookshelf, mini fridge and microwave, futon and video game system.

"Sweet set up," the social worker says.

"Yeah, my friends calls it Dudley's second bedroom."

The social workers seems to be engrossed in a hand drawn Marauder's Map when she catches Henry off guard with her next question.

"Do you think your mothers are really in love?"

Henry thinks for a few seconds, confused by this line of questioning. "Yes?"

"Really? When do you think they fell in love?"

Henry shrugs. "You'd have to ask them. But when I used to see them asleep together, they always looked happy and at peace. Even way back. I think they loved each other for a long time before they admitted it to themselves or each other."

"So you don't think this is a fake relationship?"

"I'm sorry. What?"

"An elaborate ruse for Emma to regain custody of the child she regrets giving up and to live in this big house with a beautiful woman who has plenty of money?"

"Oh my god!" Henry starts laughing hard. "A ruse? You couldn't be more wrong!"

"It just seems very convenient that the woman who gave you up for adoption just so happens to fall in love with the woman who adopted you."

Henry is trying to stop laughing, as he wipes away tears and catches his breath. "I don't know what to tell you. Fate. Destiny. Serendipity. They were meant to be together and to be my mothers. If you had any idea how many times I've heard them...or seen them...caught them with messed up hair, shirts on backwards or inside out, lipstick just...everywhere..."

Ms. Wiley's eyes grow large.

"But," Henry continues, "it's always when I come home early without calling first. When they think they have the house to themselves. So it isn't like they're putting on a show or anything. They wouldn't do that to me on purpose. They just love each other."

"Sexual compatibility does not equal being in love."

"Maybe not. But what about protecting each other? Defending each other? Being there for each other when they're sad or hurting? Comforting each other after bad dreams?"

"That's just what friends do."

"Isn't that what love is? Friendship that has caught fire?"

"Perhaps."

"How about this? A couple of months ago, Emma spent half an hour fixing breakfast in bed for mom. All of mom's favorites. Eggs, bacon, pancakes, the works. Then she spent the next half hour crying and apologizing and holding back mom's hair while she puked because the smell of bacon set off her morning sickness. Now Emma has banned all bacon from the house for the duration of their pregnancies even though it doesn't make her sick, just so mom won't smell it in her own home. Emma won't even eat a BLT in a restaurant in case if she kisses mom later on she won't have bacon breath. I know it may seem silly but you have no idea how much Emma loves bacon."

"That's very sweet but it still doesn't mean they're in love."

"I don't know what else to say. I'm fifteen. I can't define what love is. But whatever my moms are, whatever they have, that's the kind of relationship I want when I grow up and get married. The example they set is how I want to treat and be treated by my spouse. They make each other happy. And when they're happy, I'm happy. We're already a family. Whether or not you give Emma a piece of paper won't change that. Legally, I'm going to be an adult in a few years anyway and none of this will matter. She just wants to be able to tell a doctor to save my life if I get sick or hurt now."

"Okay."

"Okay?"

"For now. Okay."

"Okay."

"I do have a checklist of questions that I am required to ask."

"Go ahead."

Henry crosses his arms and leans against his desk as the social worker sits on the futon and gets her tablet out of her briefcase.

"How are you doing in school?"

"Pretty good. I'm in the honor society. Taking a few advanced classes. Trying to graduate early if I can."

"What about sports?"

"I ride my horse a lot. I like basketball. I'm not that good yet. I've had a growth spurt and I'm still kind of growing into my feet. I practice with my friend Ava a lot. She made the girls team this year. I'm hoping to make the boys team next year."

"That was my next question. Do you have a best friend?"

"Yeah. Ava. Also her twin brother Nick and I are kind of close. And there's also Grace. Some other kids too but that's who I hang with the most."

"Any romantic interests?"

"I had a girlfriend but she moved away."

"Ava isn't your girlfriend?"

"No."

"Really?"

"No. We're just friends."

"Do you like her?"

"She's my best friend. Just my best friend. Boys and girls can be just best friends."

"But you do identify as straight?"

Henry looks up in shock.

"Strike that. I'm probably not allowed to ask you that."

"You're probably right."

"Moving on. Discipline. How are you punished when you get into trouble?"

"I usually get grounded. Lose screen time. No video games. Stuff like that. If I break curfew by more than ten minutes again, supposedly I lose my iPhone and get a track phone with only talk and text. I think they're joking but I'm not taking any chances."

"So you don't get spankings?"

Henry snorts. "No."

"What do you do when you get sick?"

"Tell mom. If it's serious, she takes me to the doctor. If it's just a cold, she takes care of me, stays home with me until I feel better."

"What does Emma do?"

"She goes to the pharmacy and gets my prescriptions or stocks up on over the counter medication, cough drops, vapo rub, tissues with lotion, stuff like that. Spoils me with ice cream or soup. Reads comics with me. Things she wished she had when she was sick in foster care."

"Are you happy living with Emma and Regina?"

"Yes. Very happy. They're a little mushy but I don't mind half as much as I pretend to. It's just fun giving them a hard time about it."

"And do you want Emma to adopt you?"

"Yes. I do."

Chapter Text

Emma and Regina are setting the dining room table for dinner when Henry and Ms. Wiley come down the stairs.

"Hello, again," Regina says. "Will you be staying for dinner?"

"Oh, no thank you," Ms. Wiley replies. "I've taken up enough of your time."

"Are you sure?" Emma asks. "It's no trouble. There's plenty."

"I'm sure. Thank you though. I really should be going."

"I'll get your coat," Henry says as he leads the social worker toward the lower foyer. He helps her into her coat then opens the door.

His mothers are bringing the food to the table when he walks back to the dining room.

"How did it go?" Emma asks. "She left in kind of a hurry."

"I'm not sure," Henry confesses. "I probably said too much."

"About what?" Regina asks.

"You guys...seeing stuff...private stuff..."

"Like?" Emma prompts.

"Seeing you guys naked in bed together when I was eleven."

"WHAT?!" They both say.

"You saw us? When you were eleven?" Regina whispers.

"Why would you tell her that?" Emma asks.

"She thinks your relationship is fake. She said you're just using mom to get me back."

"What the Hell?"

"I'll have her fired!"

"Who does she think she is?"

"I'll have her dismembered."

"Damn, Regina. Reel in the evil queen a little bit."

"No, we can't let her say such inflammatory things to our son. We need to do something. File a complaint with her supervisors."

"I think she's inexperienced," Henry says. "She looks kind of young. Maybe she doesn't know what all she can say or ask."

"If she's incompetent," Emma says, "she needs to go back to social worker school or get a different job."

"Did she say anything else inappropriate?"

"She asked me if I was straight."

"The Hell?"

"What exactly did she say?"

"She kept bugging me about Ava being my girlfriend and I kept telling her we are just friends. That boys and girls can be just friends. Then she said 'but you do identify as straight, right?'"

"This is some homophobic crap," Emma says, shaking her head.

"What do you mean?" Regina asks.

"She doesn't think two gay women can raise a straight kid."

"Do you think that's what it is?"

"What else could it be? We don't know her. She doesn't know us."

"Henry, what exactly did she say about our relationship?"

"That it was an elaborate ruse for Emma to regain custody of me and to live in a big house with a beautiful woman who has plenty of money."

"So I'm a liar and a gold digger?"

"She went on and on about it. It felt like an interrogation and I had to keep defending your love."

"Regina, I swear on everything, I really do love you."

"Emma, I know that. We have true love, you dork."

Henry snorts.

"Oh, yeah." Emma smiles then realizes her wife called her a dork. "Hey."

Regina shakes her head in amusement. "We really do need to file a complaint or something."

"We should call Kathryn," Emma suggests. "See what legal action we can take."

"Yes," Regina agrees. "If we can't get her fired, I want a reprimand on her record and I want her retrained on how to deal with same-sex parents."

"You call Kathryn," Emma says as she gets on her phone. "I'll send out a mass text to everyone. Put this bitch on blast, so if anyone in town talks to her, they'll know what's up."

*******

Bertha Wiley walks into Granny's Diner and takes a seat at the counter. The waitress brings her a glass of water and a menu, saying she'll be back to take her order. The social worker looks over the menu, patiently waiting while the waitress checks her phone.

The waitress looks at the woman, looks back at her phone, then back at the woman. She types out something with her thumbs and then goes to take the woman's order.

"Are you ready?"

"Yes, I would like a BLT, light on the mayo, with chips."

"Anything to drink?"

"Do you have hot chocolate?"

"Yeah."

"I'll have that, please."

The waitress writes down the order and turns toward the kitchen.

"Oh," the woman says. "One more thing. Could you sprinkle some cinnamon on the cocoa, please? I just had some like that and it was really good."

"Uh huh."

The waitress returns to the kitchen and comes back with a cup of cinnamon sprinkled hot chocolate, just as Snow walks through the door.

"Hello, Lily!"

"Hello...Mary Margaret..."

Snow gets a confused look on her face, then takes a seat at the counter. Lily brings her a glass of water and stands in front of her with an order pad.

"It's father-son bonding day," Snow says. "So I thought I'd treat myself to a meal where I don't have to clean up after."

"That's nice," Lily replies. "It's my day off but I got called in."

"Oh, that's awful."

"Yeah. What are you having?"

"I can't decide between the chicken club or the turkey club..."

"You can get the club with both."

"Oh, no. That might be too much."

Lily checks the time on her watch and turns around to look at the window to the kitchen. No orders are ready yet so she continues to stand in front of Snow.

"I think I'll have the turkey club," Snow says.

"You think or you know?"

"Yes...I know...definitely turkey."

Lily writes down the order and turns toward the kitchen.

"And hot chocolate!" Snow calls out.

"Gotcha covered!"

"Don't forget the cinnamon!"

"That was one time, Sn...Mary Margaret!" Lily yells from the other room. "I forgot your cinnamon one time! You don't have to say it every day now!"

Snow winces and takes a sip of water.

"Is that a local thing?" The woman beside her asks.

"Is what a local thing?"

"The cinnamon on the cocoa thing? I just came from a house where I was given a cup with cinnamon, and everyone there had it like this. I've never heard of it but here you are getting it the same way."

"Oh...I guess it is a local thing then. It's mostly just me and my...where were you given cocoa with cinnamon?"

"A client's house. I'm a social worker, I really can't say who."

"Oh, are you here about Emma adopting Henry?"

"Yes. How did you guess?"

"Because it's really only me and my...ex roommate and her son who like cinnamon on our cocoa."

"Your ex...roommate?"

"Yes. We lived together for a few years."

"Oh, I recognize you from the wedding pictures. You were a bridesmaid?"

"Yes! Did they get the portraits back? I haven't seen them yet!"

"They're beautiful."

"I can't wait to see them. I'm...Mary Margaret, by the way."

"Bertha Wiley."

"Nice to meet you. I don't think I've ever met a Bertha before."

"I remember now Henry mentioned you by name. Said you had a dog. And sheep."

"Yes. My husband does all the sheep herding. I'm a teacher at Storybrooke Elementary."

"That's nice. I'll have to double check, but I think Emma also listed you as a reference on her adoption application."

Lily returns with Bertha's BLT and Snow's cocoa.

"Thank you, Lily. How is your mother doing?"

"She's just great. Living it up in the big house."

"She's in prison?" Bertha asks.

"No," Lily answers. "We live in a big house."

Lily shakes her head and walks back toward the kitchen.

"She's kind of rude for a waitress," Bertha comments.

"Oh, she's angry with me from way back. Her mother and I had a thing... I really hurt her mother... and her."

"Oh..."

"Not that kind of thing. It's just an old grudge."

"Sorry. I didn't mean to assume. It's just, you said you and Emma used to live together, and then you and...her mother had a thing."

Snow chokes on her cocoa. "Me and Emma? Oh my god no! That's just...no. Emma is...like a...sister...to me."

"I'm sorry."

"It's fine. We're just...not that kind of roommates."

"So you were okay...living with...a lesbian?"

"Yes. I mean...I didn't even know. I'm not even sure how she identifies. She only dated men as far as I knew. But her sexuality wouldn't have been a problem if she'd told me."

"She only dated men before?"

"Yeah. There was Henry's father. The former sheriff, although they didn't really date, he was dating Regina. But he kissed Emma, then she and Regina got into a fight over it."

"Regina dated men, too? They actually fought over a man?"

"Emma and Regina pretty much fought over everything that first year but yeah. I heard a rumor once a very long time ago about Regina and..." Snow takes a moment to look around for Lily, then continues. "...another woman, but you know how rumors are. The rest of her relationships that I knew about were men."

"Interesting that they both only dated men before."

"And they all seemed to die."

"I'm sorry. What?"

"Regina's first boyfriend ever died. Henry's father died. The former sheriff died. And then about two years ago, I remember we were all at Regina's boyfriend's funeral and about twenty yards away was Emma's boyfriend's grave...still with fresh dirt on it."

"That's a lot of dead boyfriends," Bertha exclaims. "And they were having an affair the whole time?"

Snow is at a loss for words, realizing she's probably said too much. "Not...the WHOLE...time..."

Lily comes back with Snow's sandwich and gives both women scathing looks.

"Where is your bathroom?" Bertha asks.

"Through the back," Lily says. "Can't miss it. Just follow the signs."

Lily watches the woman until she disappears behind the corner, then turns angrily toward Snow. "Why haven't you been answering your text messages?"

"Oh," Snow says. "I dropped my phone in dish water. I have it in rice but if that doesn't dry it out, I'm getting it replaced tomorrow."

Lily shakes her head and gives her phone to Snow. "Read this message from Emma and the next one she forwarded from Kathryn."

Snow's face goes through a myriad of expressions and colors as she quickly scans the messages. She's just finishing up the message from Kathryn when Bertha returns from the bathroom.

"You're a bigot," Snow says to the woman.

"Excuse me?"

"You're doing the evaluation for Emma's adoption application and you have a pre-existing bias against gay people. That's not good."

"That's not--,"

"No! You don't get to talk! You were perfectly happy to listen while I ran my mouth before, so you can listen while I run my mouth some more. First of all, you did an illegal electronic background check on Emma without her written or informed consent. Second, you asked about sealed juvenile records, that you only obtained knowledge of through your illegal search from an unverified story in a small town newspaper. Third, you questioned a child about the validity of his parents' relationship and about his sexuality. What is wrong with you?"

Bertha's mouth hangs open in disbelief as the formerly friendly woman continues to go off.

"Fourth, you've spoken with me about privileged information in a public setting with no regards to your client's privacy. And fifth, a home study isn't even required in a step-parent adoption. You only needed three things. Emma to pass a criminal background check, which as an elected official, she already has. An absent parent consent, which isn't applicable because Emma is the other parent and Henry's birth father is deceased. And you needed Henry's consent, since he is over fourteen. Those three things plus an application fee are all that were required.

"No," Bertha protests. "You don't understand. It's a unique situation with Emma being Henry's birth mother."

"And I would have believed that, except you wouldn't have known that if you hadn't illegally investigated Emma's past. Regina is the only parent listed on Henry's present birth certificate. Henry's original birth certificate with Emma's name and Baby Boy Swan on it, is in a sealed vault somewhere in either Phoenix or Boston. Now it's my belief that you saw the names of two women on the application and due to your homophobia you started digging. That's discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation."

"You can't prove that."

"Two statements by you. 'You do identify as straight, right?' to a teenage boy with gay mothers, and 'You were okay living with a lesbian?' to me are all the proof I need. Have you even read the National Association of Social Workers Code of Ethics? You have racked up at least six code violations, and our city attorney is looking to see if you've committed more."

"What?"

"Did you really think the sheriff and the mayor would allow this type of discrimination to go unpunished? My only suggestion is you go back to your cubicle and you rubber stamp Emma's application, push it through with your full approval or you will be the subject of a huge lawsuit."

"You're serious?"

"The Maine Human Rights Committee will be so...so far up in your business. I told you Emma is like a sister to me. We may be a small town but we stick together and we take care of our own. You fucked with family. Unfuck what you fucked up and maybe all of this will go away."

Bertha throws some money on the counter, puts on her coat and hurries out the door.

"Damn, Snow White," Lily chuckles. "Unfuck?"

Snow stammers for a few seconds.

"That was so badass. I'll just send a copy of the video to Emma and Kathryn," Lily says, tapping away on her phone. "Only seeing is believing."

Chapter Text

Regina pulls her birthday present, a Mercedes Benz V250 BlueTEC, into her driveway and activates the garage door opener. While waiting for the middle door to rise, she checks her phone messages. There is a selfie of Emma in the attic kitchen stirring a pot of something on the stove and sporting a dab of flour on her nose. Regina takes a picture of the external temperature gauge on the dashboard, which reads 3 F, and sends it back to Emma with the message, "you owe me!"

She pulls forward into the garage between Emma's yellow bug and Henry's newest obsession: the frame and various parts of a 2006 Triumph Scrambler, that Emma has dubbed Frankencycle. She parks and waits until the garage door is completely down before turning off the engine and exiting the van. She rushes through the breezeway and climbs the steps to enter the kitchen, closing the door quickly against the frigid air.

On the breakfast table sits a mug of steaming spiced cider and a note. Regina removes her gloves, wraps her hands around the warm mug, and takes a drink of the cider. She sighs as the hot liquid slides down her throat. Picking up the note, she laughs. "Sorry I got called into work and you had to help chaperone the school dance and then drive Henry to his sleepover. Warm up on the inside and then go to your bedroom."

Regina tucks her gloves into her coat pockets and removes her scarf. She hangs everything up in the closet, then finishes her cider. After rinsing the mug in the sink and depositing it onto the top shelf of the dishwasher, she mounts the back stairs and goes to her bedroom.

On the bed there is another note and a red dress that Regina hasn't worn in several years. She picks up the note: "I have run you a bath so you can warm up on the outside. Take as long as you need. You don't have to wear the dress but it would be cooler if you did."

She walks into the bathroom and finds a hot bath has been drawn with a baby safe rubber duck thermometer floating on the surface. There are numerous candles are lit and a gift basket filled with all of Regina's favorite bath oils and scents. She chooses a muslin bag filled with oats, lavender and sandalwood, and drops it into the water. Then she pins up her hair and begins to undress.

After a long soak, Regina drains the water, dries off, and snuffs out the candles. She walks back into the bedroom and there is now a blue iris on the bed, along with a walkie talkie that Emma and Henry used to communicate long ago, and a new note: "Did you know the flower symbolism associated with the blue iris is faith, cherished friendship, hope, promise in love, and wisdom? I still say it's purple. Get dressed and meet me upstairs."

Shaking her head, Regina picks up the walkie talkie. Her call for "Emma?" is answered by only static. She rolls her eyes and says, "Emma? Over."

"Yes, my love? Over."

"I can't wear this dress. Over."

"Please explain. Over."

"I'm 20 weeks pregnant. Over."

"I know. People can finally tell that the seed of my loins has been fruitful in the belly of my woman. What's your point? Over."

Regina scoffs and asks, "What are you wearing? Over."

There is a long pause and then Emma answers, "Are you initiating walkie talkie sex? Because I'm game. Over."

Regina laughs. "No. This dress was snug before I was pregnant. It's not going to fit me anymore...Over."

"You don't have to wear it, I just want to do something romantic and cheesy that involves the dress. Plus, you have magic. Over."

"Fine."

Regina drops the walkie talkie onto the bed and waves her fingers over the dress, making it the size she needs to accommodate her growing bust, waist, and hips. She skips the new skimpy underwear she didn't notice before, puts on the dress, and slips her feet into a pair of black kitten heels.

She picks up the flower and retrieves a wrapped gift from her nightstand drawer, then walks to the base of the attic stairs.

"Are you ready for me?" She calls up.

"Yes!" Emma answers.

She walks up the stairs and finds Emma at the top holding another hot cider. She's wearing black leggings, a red flannel shirt, and red socks.

"Oh, you get to wear new weather appropriate clothes and I have to wear this old thing?"

Emma greets her with a kiss and hands her the mug of cider. "This old thing is a great dress. I love you in this dress." She suddenly lifts her shirt, exposing the stretchy top of her pants. "Look! Maternity leggings!"

Regina laughs, gives Emma another kiss and takes a sip of cider.

"I have a fire going in the living room," Emma whispers.

They join hands and walk into the living room. There is a small table set up by the fireplace decorated with a cloth, candles, and a small empty vase. Regina places her gift on the table and puts the blue iris into the vase.

"That's the same flower as the first one you ever gave me," Regina says.

"Yes, it is," Emma answers with a smile. "Sorry we had to do this here. I thought about renting us a room in Boston. Maybe taking you to the ballet or a play, but I saw it was negative nine degrees there and knew you'd hate the long trip. We can do that when it's warmer."

"Good call. This last minute scavenger hunt is lovely. And something smells good."

"Cheesy chicken pizza!"

"Pizza? How romantic."

"We had pizza the day we made the babies," Emma says as she walks over to her stereo and pushes a button. "Plus I made the dough and cooked the sauce, just like you showed me."

Music starts playing. Regina recognizes 'Lady in Red' and laughs as Emma reaches for her hand, silently asking for a dance. They slip their arms around each other and begin to sway slowly.

"This song popped into my head the first time I saw you in this dress. Your smile was amazing. You took my breath away."

Regina takes a deep breath. "You do know what put that smile on my face, right?"

"Yeah, I know. Henry told me. Part of me was genuinely happy for you. I will admit that part of me was jealous, wished I had put that smile there myself. And another part of me was angry, wanted to kick Robin in the ding ding, then leave town and never come back. But I don't begrudge you now for finding a few moments of happiness with someone else then. That's not who we are."

"I'm glad you decided to stay," Regina says. She lays her head on Emma's shoulder as they continue to dance and she reflects further on that day. "You lost your magic that day. It wasn't the best day."

"Are you kidding me?" Emma asks. "You shared true love's kiss with Henry that day. You found your light magic that day. My brother was born that day. It was a great day."

The oven alarm buzzes just as the song ends. "Food's ready," Emma announces.

"I need to use the bathroom," Regina sighs. "Too much cider."

"You go pee and I'll get the food."

Regina goes to the bathroom and notices that Emma has wired speakers throughout the attic. The song has changed to 'Hopelessly Devoted to You' and she laughs. Yet another karaoke song from their drunken night on the pool table. She finishes up, washes her hands, and returns to the living room.

Emma is placing the heart shaped pizza on the table. There is also a nicely wrapped box beside the gift that Regina had brought upstairs.

"Should we eat first or exchange gifts first?" Regina asks.

"You open yours while I cut the pizza," Emma answers.

Regina sits down and begins to carefully tear the beautiful paper then lifts the lid, revealing silver frames with decorative tiaras above their babies' ultrasound pictures.

"They're beautiful!"

"Those are probably the only princess-y things I'll ever buy for them," Emma teases.

"Yeah, right," Regina laughs. "I love it."

"I can have them engraved when we finally pick out names."

Regina gives Emma a look, then scoots her gift across the table.

Emma excitedly rips the paper and gasps. It's a framed copy of Henry's new birth certificate, listing both Emma and Regina as his parents.

"I love it!" Emma exclaims. "I can't believe how fast the court date was set up. That was the only time I enjoyed appearing before a judge by the way. The website said it would take three months and it's barely been six weeks since I applied."

"I'm sure that's all thanks to the fire your mother lit under Bigoted Bertha's ass."

"Yeah, we should probably name one of the babies after her or something."

"Do you want to sleep alone on Valentine's Day? I can make that happen."

Emma laughs and says, "Eat your pizza."

The song switches over to 'Faithfully' by Journey and Regina laughs. "Did you line up all of the songs we sang that night?"

"Only the ones I remember," Emma says. "Then some of the songs that played while we moved on to more amorous activities."

"Hoping to relive those memories?"

"Or make new ones."

"I did like the dancing. That was new."

"We can definitely do more of that."

Regina smiles. "Eat up. You'll need the energy."

Emma smiles and takes a huge bite of pizza.

Regina hums and takes a delicate nibble of her own slice. "This is really good," she says before devouring the piece and helping herself to another.

"You know," Emma comments between bites, "I sort of pictured you pregnant in this dress for like a split second that day?"

"Really?"

"Yeah. When we were at the hospital putting up the force fields--"

"Protection spells."

"Po-tay-to, po-tah-to. The shields were up. And I turned around and saw you. Your back was to me, great view by the way, and you were standing under the OB/GYN sign, and...I don't know, you turned sideways and I saw your belly like it is now. I blinked and it was gone."

"Was it a vision of the future?"

"I don't think so. I didn't have any visions before the dark one curse. A lot of deja vu maybe, but no premonitions."

"What's the difference?"

"Visions you know are going to come true. Deja vu, you don't know you had a glimpse into the future until after it happens." Emma shrugs. "It was probably just wishful thinking. And something else to suppress."

"Well, no need to suppress anything anymore," Regina whispers, reaching across the table to take Emma's hand. "All of your wishes have come true."

The song switches to 'Your Song' by Elton John and Emma's eyes grow large. "We have to dance to Elton John," she says. "It's like the rules of gayness."

"There are rules?" Regina asks as she follows Emma to the middle of the floor.

Emma tilts her head and ponders her answer. "Strict guidelines."

"I think I was getting rug burn on both of my knees the last time I heard this song," Regina snarks. "Hope I don't lose my membership card."

"You were having sex on a pool table with another woman. You're good."

"That's what she said."

"Did you just...?" Emma laughs and tightly wraps her arms around Regina's waist, then backs up when their bellies bump. She settles for hands on hips as she hums along to the song.

Regina leans in and begins kissing Emma's neck. Emma sighs and leans her head to the side, giving Regina's mouth more room to explore. Regina's lips slide slowly upward, finally reaching Emma's earlobe.

Emma moans at the contact. Her knees weaken and she grips Regina's hips more firmly. Regina gently suckles the lobe, making Emma's moans grow louder.

"If you keep doing that we're not going to make it through the song," Emma whispers.

"You catch on fast."

Emma pulls back slightly only to capture Regina's lips with her own. They kiss passionately while Regina rakes her fingers through Emma's hair and Emma gropes Regina's ass.

Suddenly, Emma's hands slow down and become more exploratory, then she breaks away from the kiss. "You're going commando again?"

"You catch on fast," Regina repeats with a chuckle.

"Come on," Emma says, pulling Regina toward the bedroom. "Time to reenact round two of our wedding night. Only this time YOU get the be the red queen sitting on her throne."

Regina laughs as they hurry down the hallway.

Emma guides Regina to sit down on the bed, then she kneels on the floor. She removes Regina's shoes and tosses them over her shoulders.

Regina leans back on her arms, watching as Emma plants delicate kisses up and down her legs. The hem of her dress is slowly pushed upward as Emma's hands massage her upper thighs.
Emma rises up to kiss Regina's lips once more and tries to guide Regina onto her back. Regina stops her with a hand to her chest.
"Strip for me," Regina whispers. "I want to see your body."

"You mean like dance?"

"If you wish. I just want to see you naked."

The music changes once more and Emma jumps up. "Oh, shit," she says as the first faint strains of George Michael's 'Faith' pour through the speakers. She spins around and starts shaking her hips back and forth as the acoustic guitar begins to play.

Regina bites her bottom lip as she watches Emma's ass.

They both mouth the words as Emma turns back around and begins unbuttoning her shirt. She teases Regina with glimpses of her cleavage and Regina notices her bra matches the underwear set that she chose not to wear.

"You bought us matching bras and panties?"

"Hell, yeah," Emma says, as she removes the flannel and wraps it around Regina's shoulders like one of Elvis Presley's scarves. "I'm romantic as shit."

Emma turns her back to Regina once more and bends over as she begins to pull her leggings down. The black material makes it to mid thigh when Regina says, "Hold it. Back that ass up."

Emma takes a step backward and Regina tugs the panties down on one side, and places a soft kiss on the exposed flesh. Emma laughs turn to moans as Regina's mouth begins to suck.

Regina reaches her fingers between Emma's legs and rubs as she continues to mark her wife. She finally pulls away with a loud pop and Emma twists around to see her handiwork.

"You hickied my ass cheek!" Emma exclaims. "Again!"

"Hell, yeah," Regina replies. "I'm romantic as shit."

Emma's mouth connects to Regina's once more as they both remove the rest of her clothes. When she's naked Regina has her step back so she can fully admire her.

Regina caresses her belly, fingers tracing over faint stretch marks. "You're beautiful," she whispers.

Emma smiles and guides Regina's hand to a spot near her bikini line and Regina feels the now familiar kicks.

"I think all the dancing woke her up," Emma says.

Regina takes Emma's hand and places it on her belly to feel the other baby kicking. "I think it was the pizza," she teases. "Should we stop?"

"Oh, Hell no," Emma says. "They'll go back to sleep once we get rocking."

Regina reaches up, cupping Emma's breasts and gently squeezing. She pulls Emma forward and takes a nipple into her mouth, sucking gently.

Emma moans and enjoys the sensation for several long moments. "Okay," she says suddenly. "Play time is over. It's time for you to sit on my face."

"Alright," Regina says with a smile, then gets on her knees while Emma lies down flat on the bed. She leans down and kisses Emma's lips one more time, then maneuvers into position.

Emma kisses and licks the soft flesh of Regina's inner thighs, moving back and forth from side to side. She stops to suck and leave a mark of her own that has Regina writhing. She finally takes mercy on them both and pulls Regina center down to her waiting mouth.

Regina groans in pleasure. She grips the headboard with one hand and holds up her dress with the other. She grinds against Emma's tongue as a string of obscenities leaves her mouth.

Emma grips Regina's ass in a futile effort to hold her still. She finally catches onto Regina's rhythm and starts thrusting her tongue inside. A loud wailing escapes Regina and Emma reaches around to tease her clit. That does the trick of setting off Regina's orgasm.

Regina sags and tries to catch her breath as Emma laps up physical remnants and Regina's sporadic internal spasms continue.

"I'm not sure how many more times we can do that," Regina says.

Emma is at a loss for words as Regina sits back and pulls her dress up over hear head and tosses it across the room. "What?" She stammers. "Why?"

"We're going to get bigger. I could barely see your eyes now. How will I know if you can't breathe?"

"I'd smack your ass in a not fun way," Emma teases. "Seriously. You aren't that heavy, I can lift you up. And it isn't even your full weight."

Regina takes a deep breath and let's it out slowly. "I know. I just worry."

"It's fine. I don't want you to worry. So it's a temporary no go on face sitting. We probably won't even feel like having sex toward the end anyway. I remember when I was pregnant with Henry, I didn't want to do anything but eat, sleep, and pee."

"You think we won't even want to?"

"Yeah. And if the mood does hit us, we'll just get creative. There's still the one of sitting on the bed, the other on the floor. Or one laying down and the other further down the bed. Humping each other's thighs...Oh! Sixty-nine! That always works."

"What's that?"

"Sixty-nine? That's when we go down on each other at the same time."

"Is that what that's called?"

"How do you not know that?"

"You are the only person from this world, I've been with. And you never told me. We just always did it."

Emma chuckles. "What do you call it in the enchanted forest?"

"We don't call it anything. Maybe make a circle motion with your finger or say flip around."

"That's hilarious."

"I don't think that would work anyway."

"Why not?"

"Neck strain, trying get around our bellies to each other's..."

"I know...Sixty-nine on our sides."

"Oh!"

"Yeah, we lay sideways, use our bottom thighs as pillows, so no neck strain..."

"That sounds like it could work."

"We should probably try it out though. Just to make sure."

"Really?"

"Yes. It's the scientific method. Right now we only have a theory based on a hypothesis. We need to test the hypothesis, preferably several times, to see if our theory is correct."

"I suppose you're right. That is an astute observation and I agree. We should put our theory to the test."

Emma makes a circle motion with her finger. Regina gives her a look. Emma flips around.

They scoot closer into place, lifting hair out of the way and finding comfortable positions for their top legs, and then they dive in like participants in a pie eating contest.

They are sloppy and messy, humming and moaning, sucking and slurping. After several minutes, they realize they are competing to get the other off first. Emma stiffens her tongue and goes the penetration route, while Regina chooses to suck on Emma's clit and tease her opening without actually fingering her.

They both get worked up as the sensations intensify. They both swap techniques at the same time, Emma goes for the clit while Regina sinks her tongue inside. Their squeaks and squeals reach a crescendo and the result is a tie as they orgasm together.

They fall apart and fall back, resting their heads on the other's thigh as they come back to themselves. They finally catch their breath and Regina kisses Emma's leg.

"We're like a yin-yang," Emma says and they both get the giggles.

Emma finally flips back around and they cuddle.

Regina is almost dozing when Emma kisses her head and says she's going to go put out the fire in the living room, put the leftover pizza away, and load the dishwasher. Regina's eyes follow her out the door, admiring the hickey on her ass. She hears Emma stop in the bathroom to clean up before making her way to the other rooms.

The need to pee gets Regina out of bed. She slips into Emma's flannel shirt, leaves it unbuttoned, and goes to the bathroom. She takes a few minutes to wash her face, brush her teeth, and comb her hair, then hurries back to the bed and under the covers. 'Saved the Best for Last' by Vanessa Williams is playing when Emma turns off the music.

She notices a baby name book on the nightstand and flips through the pages. She laughs hysterically when she finds a certain name. She says the name out loud a few times. She decides she likes it.

Emma returns with two water bottles. She sets them on the nightstand and crawls under the blankets. "What were you laughing about?" She asks then yawns.

Regina shows her the name in the book. "What do you think? It means 'white snow'."

"It's pretty. I like it."

"Oh my god," Regina sighs. "I think I've actually just named one of my babies after Snow White."

"She'll like that," Emma says before she snuggles close and wraps her arm around Regina's belly. She slips her hand inside Regina's shirt and gently squeezes her breast. She eases the shirt open and sucks on the nearest nipple for a few seconds. "Titties," she sighs before falling asleep.

Regina continues to stare at the name in the book.

Chapter Text

Regina is sitting in her study drinking hot chocolate and looking at pictures of Henry in a photo album. She's exhausted and she's been crying. Her eyes are puffy and red with dark circles.

She's startled by a knock at the door. A quick look out the window reveals Emma's yellow bug parked beyond the bushes in front of the walkway.

She goes to the door and upon opening it, sees Emma facing the street with an overnight bag in her hand.

"Awfully presumptuous of you, Miss Swan," she quips.

Emma laughs and turns around. "You left a few things at Mary Margaret's --- oh my god. Are you alright?"

"Yes, I'm fine. Just a little tired."

Emma doesn't need her lie detector to know that isn't true, but she lets it go.

"I just wanted to drop off this stuff that you left at the loft. I was going to wash it all first but Henry said we use a different detergent than what you like. Plus I know that blouse needs to be dry cleaned from when I borrowed it...so I thought I'd just return everything as is."

"Thank you," Regina says, taking the bag. "How is Henry?"

"He's great. Exhausted and sleeping like the dead, but great. He told me how horrible that dream fire-room was and that he didn't get much sleep while we were gone. But that he also hasn't dreamed about it since David took the sleeping curse. So he's having sweet dreams again."

"I'm so glad to hear that. I was worried about him."

"He talked my ear off all night about you. About how you stayed with him at the loft and got Gold to help him. And us. How you made the sleeping curse so David could go to the fire-room instead of him. He couldn't stop singing your praises. About how much you've changed."

"Really?"

"Yeah. He has me convinced. And...right before he fell asleep, he said you absorbed a death curse or something?"

"Something like that..."

"Is that why you look... like you look?"

"It has taken a toll. Yes. But I'll recover...in time."

"Are you sure? Maybe you shouldn't be alone."

"I'm fine. You shouldn't leave Henry alone for long."

"He's out cold. Plus, he's not alone. Mary Margaret and David are there. They're just...being gross."

"Gross?"

"Giving each other looks like they haven't seen each other in weeks and can't wait for bedtime gross? They never...at the apartment before. At least not while I was home. I'm not sure how that's going to work. It's basically one big room."

"And you left my child there?"

"He's sleeping do deep. I banged my toe in the dark on the corner of my bed and he didn't flinch, jump, or even roll over... I left him a note saying I missed my car so I was going for a drive. Which was my original plan but I saw your light on and I already had the bag in my car, so... Anyway, I think he's out until morning."

"He is usually a very deep sleeper. Extremely difficult to wake up in the mornings for school."

"Good to know."

"Would you like to stay here for a while? And avoid walking in on your parents having quiet missionary sex?"

Emma's eyes grow large.

"I would like to talk with you about my mother as well. Find out what all happened over there with her."

"Are you sure? We can talk tomorrow. I'd hate to cut into your sleep time."

"Yes. Come in. I can't sleep right now anyway."

Emma steps inside and Regina leads her toward the study.

"Would you like some cocoa? I ground the beans myself."

"Sure. Thanks."

Regina retrieves her cup and then goes to the kitchen.

Emma removes her jacket and sees the photo album. She looks at pictures of Henry as a toddler on a tricycle in the driveway.

Regina returns with their cocoa and gives Emma a cup.

Emma takes a sip and looking surprised, quickly takes another drink. "This is really good. Won't the chocolate keep you awake though?"

"I was trying to reduce my stress hormones."

Emma looks confused.

"The death curse I absorbed?" Regina explains. "It's wreaking havoc with my adrenal system. Among other things."

"Like an adrenaline rush?"

"Yes. Exactly. Except adrenaline rushes usually only last for maybe up to an hour. This has not dissipated at all after...seven hours."

"And drinking hot chocolate can help that?"

"Chocolate can release a counteracting hormone. Nothing else is working so far. I've tried deep breathing, yoga, meditation...I had a healthy dinner, avoided alcohol, turned down all the lights and tv. Everything the internet said to get rid of this fight or flight feeling. Except talking about my stressful feelings with friends and family. Because I have no friends or family."

"Regina."

"I know Henry is my family...he's a child though. He doesn't need to know about this."

"Do you think talking about your mother will help?"

"Yes. I hope so anyway."

"Okay. I'll tell you everything I know."

"Thank you. She's the reason Gold and I cast that stupid curse in the first place. You would not believe the anxiety and stress just knowing she's alive has caused me. I cannot let her anywhere near Henry."

"She was hell bent on getting to Storybrooke. Um,...She was all nice at first. Pretending you were the only Big Bad."

"Big Bad?"

You know. The main villain."

"Hmmm."

"Anyway...She was just this nice lady in the same jail cell."

"Jail cell?"

"I don't know what it was. Big hole in the ground but it had a door. It was all a ruse to catch me off guard. She ran the whole compound."

"Where was it?"

"This safe haven place on sort of an island except there was a land bridge."

Regina nods that she knows the location.

"It was immune from your curse somehow. Time was still frozen, I think. Because your mother didn't look ancient or anything."

"She's supposed to look dead. I saw her body in a coffin."

"I don't know. I guess she faked that. Everyone thought she was Lancelot for a long time, and he's a tall muscular black man. I guess she could fake being dead, too."

"I can't believe she's still alive."

After a few awkward seconds of watching Regina fight back tears, Emma continues her retelling of what happened.

"Mary Margaret was knocked out..and while she was unconscious, I told your mother how badly I needed to get back home...and that you and I sort of share Henry."

"So she knows about Henry?" Regina starts to breathe rapidly.

"I'm sorry. I didn't know...Are you sure this will reduce your stress? It seems to be doing the opposite."

Regina takes a few deep calming breaths. "Yes. Knowing is better than not knowing. I can be better prepared if she ever finds her way here."

"Okay...She's teamed up with this Hook guy."

"Captain Hook? That double crossing shit weasel!"

"Oh you know him?"

"I should have known he'd betray me. He isn't exactly famous for his loyalty. He'll team up with anyone if it gets him closer to killing Rumpelstiltskin."

Emma raises her eyebrows in agreement and takes a sip of cocoa.

"Plus," Regina continues. "He gave me crabs."

Emma chokes on her cocoa. "You slept with him?"

Regina shrugs. "A five minute fumble in a rocking carriage. It wasn't even...worthwhile."

"Oh my god..."

"I suppose I should be thankful it wasn't a pox. He is a pirate."

Emma starts laughing hysterically.

"Why is that funny?"

"It's not. I'm just picturing... your cartoon characters... going at it... in a horse drawn carriage...."

"Are you quite done?"

Emma calms down and takes a deep breath. "He's kind of pervy. I always figured Captain Hook was into little kids. The way he hung around that island of lost boys so much. Sort of like the Peculiar Purple Pie-man of Porcupine Peak?"

"Who?"

"The Big Bad in the Strawberry Shortcake stories."

Regina looks confused.

"Guess she's not real..." Emma muses.

"Can we get back to my mother and that sniveling scoundrel?"

"Right. Mary Margaret figured that wardrobe tree thing I went through as a baby could get us back home somehow. So we teamed up with Aurora and Mulan to trek to her castle and...I'm not sure what the plan was to get the wardrobe to work again...but Cora showed up there and I couldn't let her get through to Henry. So while she and Mary Margaret fought...Mary Margaret is kind of a badass...She shot an ogre in the eye with an arrow...Anyway...I set the wardrobe on fire."

Regina shakes her head. "Fire wouldn't destroy the wardrobe's magical properties. Just because something is ashes doesn't necessarily mean it's ruined."

"Yeah, I got that. Your mom took the ashes and was able to open a portal at Lake Nostos, which is just a giant sand pit now. There was also a compass, a beanstalk, a giant, another jail cell, and some squid ink."

"A beanstalk? Did you get any magic beans?"

"No, they were all destroyed. There was one dried up, dead bean. But the rest were all gone."

"How did you get through the portal if mother opened it?"

"Sword fight."

"You?"

"Yeah. Mulan taught me some stuff. I kicked Hook's ass. Well, he won the sword fight in the end but he didn't expect me to coldcock him. Guy has a glass jaw."

"Good to know."

"Yeah. Then your mom was going to take Mary Margaret's heart...for you...but I jumped in between them...and she got hold of my heart."

Regina looks alarmed, assuming Emma could be under her mother's control. "She has your heart?"

"No. She couldn't pull it out. She tugged a few time, hurt like a bitch, but my heart would not be moved. And a burst of light or something just...exploded out...knocked her back. I don't know what it was. Then Mary Margaret and I jumped through the portal."

"And you came through at the well."

"Yeah."

"Did the light burst kill mother?"

"I don't think so. Just bought us enough time to jump through the portal."

"Damn."

"That's all I can remember." Emma watches as Regina takes a few more calming breaths. "Has this helped reduce your stress hormone thing?"

"Not really. Maybe a little."

"Is there anything else on that internet list?"

Regina gives Emma an inquisitive look then shakes her head. "There's one other thing...but it's too much. I can't ask it."

"Well what is it? I'll help if I can."

"No...it's inappropriate. We don't have that kind of relationship."

Emma looks astonished. "Inappropriate? What...do you mean sex?"

Regina nods. "Orgasm releases a hormone that counteracts the stress hormones."

"The same one chocolate does?"

"Yes. Only more of it and without the caffeine."

Emma starts laughing.

"Forget it. I have a toy upstairs I could try."

"You have a toy?" Emma continues to laugh.

"I fail to see how that is funny. I found your toy in the back of your sock drawer."

Emma immediately stops laughing. "What? What were you doing in my sock drawer?"

"Borrowing some socks. You need a better hiding place if you're going to be sharing a room with my son. So I hid it in the tampon box in your nightstand."

"What?"

"I guarantee Henry will never look in there."

"Oh my god."

Regina smiles at Emma's discomfort and takes a sip of cocoa.

Emma watches her and contemplates.

"Here's the thing," Emma finally says. "I could...you know...help you..."

Regina shakes her head. "No, it's too much to ask."

"No, it's not. It's not like I haven't...done it...before..."

"You have previous experience giving someone an orgasm to reduce their cortisol levels?"

"No. The fuck buddy thing."

"Fuck buddy?"

"Friends with benefits. Whatever. I scratch your back, you scratch mine. Tit for tat. This for that."

"You're really willing to do that for me?"

Emma shrugs. "Sure. It would be mutual, right?"

"Yes, of course. I would reciprocate."

"Great. Then it's settled. Can I take a shower first? Mary Margaret hogged the bathroom. Not that I cared. I was happy spending time with Henry. It's just I still smell like chimera and campfire."

"Yes, of course. Let me clean up these cups first and I'll show you upstairs."

Emma follows Regina into the kitchen, checking her out as she rinses the cups and loads them into the dishwasher.

"I hate waking up to a mess," Regina says.

Emma nods. "Have you ever done this before?"

"Had sex? Yes. Of course."

"You're funny. I mean..."

"Had a fuck buddy? Yes, I suppose you could call it that. Remember the dragon you slayed?"

"You fucked a dragon?"

"She's a human who can transform into a dragon."

"I killed your fuck buddy? You sent me to kill your fuck buddy?"

"Just because something is ashes doesn't necessarily mean it's ruined."

"So she could come back?"

Regina nods.

"Good to know."

Emma follows Regina up the stairs, through her room, and into the bathroom.

"So?" Emma teases. "...you got that whole crabs thing taken care of right? You know...before I use your towels and...do you?"

Regina gives Emma a questionable look. "Did I rid myself of the pubic lice I contracted from a dirty pirate before you were born? Yes. I can get you a copy of my medical records if you like."

"Regina...it's a joke. Relax. You won't be able to orgasm, being all serious and anxious."

"I guess I need to adjust to your idea of foreplay."

Emma smiles and takes the towel Regina offers her. "Speaking of foreplay..." Emma asks. "What are the boundaries?"

"Boundaries?"

"Do you want fingers or my mouth or for me to use your toy on you? All three? What do you like? What do you not like? Do you need to be on top?"

"Oh." Regina takes a moment to think. "I like to be on top but I don't need to be. I don't want the toy tonight. Just human contact. Take your time. Seduce me. Make love to me."

Emma lifts her eyebrows in surprise.

"Poor choice of words. But...you know what I mean."

"Yes," Emma nods.

"What are your boundaries?" Regina asks.

"You can do whatever you like. Just give me a heads up if it involves pain."

"Pain?"

"A bite on the neck...a slap on the ass...nipple pinching...Whatever. Just no visible hickeys. Wouldn't want Henry to see anything like that."

Regina looks bemused. "I can do that."

Emma begins to strip and Regina looks startled.

"Would you like to join me in the shower?" Emma asks. "We could get started right away."

Regina smiles, her eyes drinking in every inch of newly exposed skin.

"Yes, of course."

******

The alarm clock goes off at 6am. Regina casually reaches over and silences it. Emma opens her eyes and looks around in shock.

"Shit," Emma says. "I'm sorry. I didn't mean to fall asleep."

Regina stretches, twisting and contorting her body in an array of positions. "It's fine," she says, smiling. "No harm done."

Emma rolls onto her side, watching Regina sink back into her pillow. "Well, you seem relaxed. Are your hormones all in alignment again?"

"Yes. Thank you. I'm still stressed about mother but I've fully recovered from the curse."

"Well, I'm glad." Emma runs a finger between Regina's breasts. "Any time you need a helping hand...give me a call."

"Seriously?"

"Yeah. No strings."

"Everything has a price."

"Okay..." Emma thinks for a second. "That thing you did with your tongue. That's the price. Just that."

Regina laughs. "Alright. How about tonight? Same time?"

Emma shifts to get above Regina. "How about right now?"

"Now?"

"Yeah. Mary Margaret's alarm doesn't go off until 7."

"No wonder she's always running late."

Emma laughs as she scoots down Regina's body, kissing soft flesh as she descends.

"Who is sheriffing the town?" Regina asks.

Emma shrugs as she takes a nipple into her mouth. "Beats me. Who was sheriffing while I was gone?"

Emma moves lower, licking a circle around Regina's navel. "There's a welcome back party this evening at Granny's. You should come."

Regina's mind whirls in confusion. She looks down at Emma between her thighs. "People won't like that."

"Who the fuck cares?" Emma says, giving Regina a swiping lick. "It's half my party. I'll invite whoever I want. And I want you."

"Really?"

Emma nods, then sucks her fingers before slowly pushing them inside. "It's pot luck," she adds between flicking Regina's clit with her tongue. "Henry misses your lasagna."

Regina's mind goes blank as Emma begins to suck and curl her fingers.

Chapter Text

Emma is walking down the hospital corridor, with a cup of hot tea in each hand, and a manila folder tucked under her arm. She turns a corner toward the PICU NICU OB/GYN wing and spots Regina waiting by the elevators.

"Hello, wife!" she calls out.

Regina turns around and smiles. "Hello, wife," she replies.

"It's almost deja vu," Emma says, handing Regina one of teas. "Except you're wearing a winter coat and not that red dress."

"The pregnant belly vision. Nice." Regina takes a sip of tea and makes a face.

"It's from a machine," Emma defends. "But it's decaf and it's hot."

Regina shrugs and starts walking toward the doctors offices. "You're just in time. We don't want to be late," she says.

"Just in time to be fifteen minutes early?"

"We're supposed to be fifteen minutes early."

"Our appointment is at three o'clock. If Dr. Ping wanted us to come at two forty-five, she should have told us two forty-five."

"We have this conversation every other appointment."

"Well, it's still true, even when I don't bring it up."

Emma opens the door to Dr. Ping's office suite and follows Regina inside. Regina signs them in at the receptionist desk while Emma settles down into one of the cushioned chairs in the waiting area. Regina walks over, hands Emma her drink and business portfolio, then removes her coat before sitting down.

Emma gives Regina her tea and portfolio back and also hands her the folder.

"Here, Madam Mayor," she says. "Put that in your trapper keeper."

"It's an office organizer."

Emma smiles. "I know. Just stick it in there."

"What is it?" Regina asks while unzipping the binder.

"Official but unofficial incident report from today. I'm not putting it in the computer files unless it happens again. I just gave them a warning today but the complainant is an asshole so I want some kind of record on record without being on record because it's a delicate situation but assholes are assholes."

"What happened?" Regina asks, skimming through the folder.

"You know how Leroy moved into mom's old loft, right? Well for about the last two weeks or so, everyday during Leroy's lunchbreak, Nova has been going over there and they've been rehearsing some skit for the miner's day festival variety show."

"Nova the nun?"

"The one and only. And they were doing some Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers tap dance routine then following up with the song and dance "Cheek to Cheek" over and over for the full lunch hour, which really has been pissing off the the guy downstairs, who works night shift and sleeps during the day."

"I take it he is the asshole complainant?"

"Exactly."

"Can't say as I blame him with all the tap dancing plus Leroy singing. But how is that a delicate situation."

"Getting to that. So he complained to Leroy exactly one time over a week ago and Leroy pretty much told him to stuff some cotton in his ears and go fuck himself. And when the guy didn't complain again, Leroy thought everything was settled. But the guy has been complaining every day to the landlord."

"So everything was not settled?"

"Not even a little bit. So he's been complaining everyday and thinking Leroy is just being an inconsiderate jerk, except the asshole landlord never said anything to Leroy. Didn't give him a courtesy call, didn't write him a letter. Nada, zilch, nothing. So him and Nova were up there everyday, dancing and singing away, making a huge racket and this guy is getting more and more pissed off. Until today, when he called me."

"Sheriff Swan-Mills to the rescue."

"And Deputy Nolan, her trusty sidekick. So we're standing outside Leroy's door while the downstairs neighbor is telling us everything that has happened so far, and the whole time we can hear Leroy just bellowing out "heaven...I'm in heaven..." and at that point I can understand why this guy is complaining because Leroy's voice is not heavenly."

Regina laughs and shakes her head. "Still not getting the delicate part."

"Right. So while we're standing there basically witnessing the noise complaint, the music is just blaring away but then the singing stops and Nova starts screaming. And we're all like what the fuck? And she starts yelling "Leroy!" and "oh my god!" Then dad goes into rescue the damsel in distress mode and kicks the door in...and we all rush inside and...there were Leroy and Nova on the sofa bed..."

"Oh, no..."

"Oh, yes. She was riding him like a thoroughbred. She had climbed that mountain and was reaching that peak. And Leroy was just smiling like the Cheshire cat, not even giving a shit that two cops and the asshole from downstairs were standing inside his broken down door. He only had eyes for Nova and it was quite a show. We may have to start calling him Dreamy again."

"Oh my god..."

"Of course dad turns around and pushes the asshole out into the hallway, leaving me standing alone to explain why we were there. The noise ordinance doesn't really cover daytime hours, so it's more a lease agreement violation than it is a crime. But I gave them a warning anyway and said we'd pay for the door if the landlord doesn't."

"Oh my god..."

"I know. Discretionary funds, maybe? I could have gone the rest of my life without ever seeing Leroy naked though. He's very...hairy."

"She's a nun..."

Emma shrugs. "I don't know if she is anymore. Or if she will be for much longer. Or if she really even is a nun because that was a curse thing. But that's why it's delicate. So officially unofficial, off the record record. Can we go to Granny's after this? I'm starving."

Regina laughs as she pulls a snack bag of baby carrots out of her coat pocket and hands them to Emma. "The speed in which your mind switches gears is amazing."

Emma eagerly takes the carrots and starts nibbling on one.

"Regina? Emma?" The women turn to see Dr. Ping standing by the door.

"What's up, doc? Emma says.

Dr. Ping laughs and holds the door open. "You can come on back to my office now."

The women gather their things and follow the doctor into her office. They make themselves comfortable as Dr. Ping removes paper copies of lab results from a drawer and places them on the desk. Emma continues to snack on carrots as the doctor explains the reason for the office visit.

"The results of your amniocentesis finally came back."

"I thought they already came back," Emma says. "The babies are both girls and they don't have down's syndrome or spina bifida."

"Those were the preliminary results, which were ready after three days and pretty much verified what we already speculated from your ultrasounds. I had additional tests run which required cultivating the amniotic fluid for two weeks."

"Okay," Emma says, grabbing another carrot from the bag.

"Now you know I recommended this test for Regina due to advanced age..."

Emma snorts and Regina reaches over and takes back the bag of carrots.

"...and Emma, you had some concerns since finding out your mother is also anemic about whether or not your anemia is genetic and not due to poor diet like you'd been told."

Regina gives the carrots back to Emma along with a playful glare.

"Now the results show no indications of any chromosomal abnormalities, neural tube defects, or genetic disorders. No fetal anemia and both babies are growing and developing as expected..."

"I'm sorry, Marilyn." Regina interrupts. "But couldn't you have told us this over the phone? And then given us the written reports during our next exam? We're busy people and since the results show no abnormalities, I fail to see the reason why we had to come all the way down here for a consultation."

"I'm getting to that," the doctor says. "The results of these test, all of these test, were so similar, that it led to a DNA sibling test. I was expecting there to be no biological relationship between these babies."

"Why?" Emma asks. "We told you we got each other pregnant."

"Yes, you did. Through 'magic', but there's no DNA in magic. But somehow, these babies share 50% of their DNA and are full siblings. This is huge! And I don't understand it."

Emma and Regina exchange looks.

"What don't you understand?" Regina asks.

"Yeah, I'm not following." Emma adds.

"Okay, if I had Henry's DNA on file, the baby that Emma is carrying would share 25% of his DNA because they share a birth mother, while the baby Regina is carrying wouldn't share any of Henry's DNA because they aren't biological siblings. That's what I expected anyway. Or if you had used the same sperm donor, they would share 25% with each other and the baby Emma is carrying would also share 25% with Henry. But these test show they share 50% with each other and both would share 25% with Henry."

"What does that mean exactly?"

"Full siblings have the same two parents, while half siblings share only one parent."

"So they are twins?" Emma asks. "Twins run in my family."

"No. That's not what I'm saying and that's not possible."

"I don't see why not. They're full siblings due on the same day."

The doctor looks confused. "Well, they aren't identical. They would share 100% DNA if they were, and that's just not possible."

"So fraternal twins is still cool." Emma smiles.

"What is the cause of your confusion, doctor?" Regina asks.

Dr. Ping takes a deep breath and blurts out, "Two cis women cannot make a baby together. Not yet anyway and not outside of a lab. There is some stem cell research that theorizes the possibility of same sex parents making a baby, from skin cells being turned into primordial cells which can then be turned into either eggs or sperm, but it's still in the experimental phase...with mice. And there is another third parent theory where the yolk of one ovum is combined with the 'egg whites', for lack of a better term, of another ovum, making one egg with the DNA of two mothers, which is then fertilized by a third parent sperm. But it's all theory or experimental. Human testing is years away."

"But there is a precedent?" Regina asks.

"No, there isn't."

"We should just tell her," Emma says to Regina. "We have doctor patient confidentiality. Her head is going to explode."

Regina nods, giving Emma permission to go on.

"We drank a potion...that temporarily gave us...each...a penis."

The doctor looks back and forth between the women. "I'm not judging," she says. "But two cis men can't make a baby either."

Emma giggles while Regina face palms.

"Regina drank the potion first," Emma explains. "And we had sex...then after the effects wore off...I drank it, too...and we had sex again...and I was on the pill and Regina had a hostile uterus, plus she thought we were shooting blanks. And we've had sex before so we didn't use protection. Plus we were drunk. The first time."

Understanding dawns across the doctor's face. "That explains the DNA! You could have told me that when you were first admitted to the hospital."

"We didn't remember," Emma says, then turns to Regina. "Should we tell her the rest? Because I have questions about true love's kiss."

"Go ahead," Regina says with a sigh.

Emma turns back to Dr. Ping. "We drank a forgetting potion after."

"You did what now?"

"I know, it was dumb. But we didn't remember any of the sex or the dick potion or the true love's kiss that uncursed Regina's uterus, until about a week after we got out of the hospital. That's when we had another true love's...kiss that broke the forgetting potion spell."

"Okay..."

"My question is...we've kissed a billion times over the years. Why didn't we have a true love's kiss before?"

Dr. Ping thinks for a moment before replying. "It's not my area of expertise, but I believe true love's kiss is always accompanied by a declaration of love, or given with the specific intent to break a curse or spell. Was that the first time you made a declaration of love?"

Emma smiles. "Yes it was. Both times. But here's the thing. Regina didn't actually observe the second true love's kiss that broke the forgetting potion spell."

Dr. Ping looks confused while Regina smiles broadly.

"She said she loved me, I said I loved her, then I kissed her...and bang! Simultaneous TLC and orgasm."

"Wouldn't true love's kiss be TLK?"

"'Technical knockout' already owns that," Emma says.

"I think that's TKO," Regina says.

"That could still apply, "Emma teases. "You were pretty out of it for a while."

Dr. Ping clears her throat.

"Anyway, my question is, when Regina...recovered?" Emma turns to Regina and Regina nods. "After Regina recovered and realized she remembered everything, I told her about the TLC and I kissed her again and there was a little rainbow blast...what curse did that true love's kiss break?"

Dr. Ping looks back and forth between the women again. "How am I supposed to know that?"

Emma starts to say something but then stops.

The doctor continues. "It may have been a subconscious reenactment on your part to demonstrate to Regina what she had missed...I understand it was you who magically put on the fireworks show when Elsa was in town?"

"You faked it?" Regina asks.

"I've never faked it in my life," Emma protests. "Well, not with you."

Regina laughs. "I did see rainbows...during..."

"Yes!" Emma says with a fist pump.

*******

Emma holds the door to Granny's open for Regina, then follows her wife inside.

"Hi!" Granny calls from behind the counter. "Grab a table and I'll be right with you. I just have to get something from the back."

"Okay," Emma says, choosing a booth toward the rear of the diner, away from the cold air by the front door and close to the bathroom.

Granny returns with an order pad and some rolls of parchment sticking out of her pocket. "Let me get your order out of the way," she says, looking excited. "And then I have something important to show you."

"O-Kay..." Emma replies. "Regina, do you still want what you said earlier? Because that's what I want, too."

"Yes," Regina says, then turns to Granny. "Two chicken burgers, well done with lettuce, tomatoes, and pickles. Two orders of onion rings. And two warm apple pies for dessert."

"Gotcha." Granny says as she writes. Then rather than taking the ticket to the kitchen, she bellows toward the back of the diner. "Two yard bird hockey pucks with rabbit food! Two sides of punked bad breath! And two Eves with lids getting a tan!"

She turns back to Emma and Regina and asks, "What to drink?"

"Two hot teas."

"Two cups of boiled leaves!" Granny yells out, then pulls a chair away from the nearest table and sits down at the end of the booth. She pockets her order pad, then pulls the rolls of parchment out of her apron and takes a deep breath.

"I noticed something last month when you two made the official royal pregnancy announcement. So I looked into it some more and all kinds of interesting things kept popping up."

"What did you notice?" Regina asks.

Granny unrolls her parchments and lays them across the table, then points to a spot on a printed lunar chart. "Your babies are due during a full moon."

Emma looks baffled. "You knew last month when the full moon was going to be four months from now?"

"Hey, just because I don't change anymore, doesn't mean I can forget when others are changing."

"Fair enough."

"Did you know you two got married during a full moon?"

"We got married in the middle of the day."

"Wolf's time can last three nights, no matter what NASA says about the full moon only lasting for moments. There's a before, during, and after that is all part of the whole."

"Okay?"

"And a marriage consummated during a full moon is the best of luck for a happy life together."

"Good to know," Emma says winking at Regina.

"And according to the pregnancy calculator Lily showed me on her phone..."

"Is Lily pregnant?"

"No, she just googled it for me. Anyway according to that and me remembering the day poor Henry walked in here looking like he witnessed the end of the world, I figured out the babies were also conceived during a full moon."

"Wow," Emma says. "Those are some impressive coincidences."

"Now hear me out," Granny says.

"There's more?" Regina asks.

"Yes! This is the most exciting part! Do you remember anything about the moon that night?"

Emma and Regina look at each other, trying to think back to the night in question.

"Didn't Henry say he and his friends were going to be looking at the moon through a telescope?" Emma asks.

"Yes!" Regina replies. "At their sleepover. There was eclipse, wasn't there?"

"I thought it was a Super moon?" Emma says.

"It was both!" Granny yells, then points to a spot on another lunar chart. "Your babies were conceived during a Super moon Lunar Eclipse!"

"What does that mean?" Emma asks.

"I don't know. I'm werewolf, not a witch. But it hadn't happened since the year before you were born, so it has to mean something. And..."

"Still more?" Regina asks.

"Just one more thing," Granny says, switching parchments to an equinox and solstice chart. "If your babies are born the day they're due, they'll be born during another full moon and the summer solstice! That hasn't happened in almost seventy years!"

"I don't know what to do with this information," Emma says.

Granny stands up and pushes her chair back under its table. "These babies are special," she says. "Products of true love from a product of true love, both parents possessors of both dark and light magic, conceived during an extremely rare lunar occurrence, born into a blessed marriage, possibly during an even more rare summer solstice with a full moon."

Stunned into silence, Emma and Regina watch Granny walk toward the kitchen and then look at each other.

"Holy shit," Emma whispers.

"What did we do?" Regina asks.

Chapter Text

People begin arriving at the mayor's outer office just before 6 p.m. Snow, David, and Neal walk in, followed by Granny, then Zelena and Robin. Lily shows up with Tink soon after, and Maleficent makes her entrance just before Henry and Ava run inside.

Most everyone is confused by the cryptic text that Emma had sent to each of them: "emergency meeting @mayor's office 6pm BYO food." They are all carrying take out bags and drinks from various restaurants. Granny has brought a veggie tray with dips.

Snow jiggles the doorknob to the inner office and discovers it is locked, leaving everyone even more bewildered.

Regina opens the door a few seconds later and ushers everybody inside.

"I apologize for the short notice," she says. "Please, come in, sit down around the table and eat. I've set up an area for the children by the couch in case you couldn't find sitters. There are some coloring sheets. Sorry the crayons are older. They were Henry's. But just settle in and we'll get started in a few minutes."

Emma is already seated at one end of the table sorting through stacks of papers and tucking them into folders. The packets include copies of the lunar charts and solstice calendars that Granny had given to them earlier that day, as well as various maps of Storybrooke and some blueprints.

"Moms?" Henry asks. "What's going on?"

Emma looks up and winks at Henry while Regina takes him into her arms. "Everything is fine, sweetheart."

"You got those test results today. Are the babies alright?"

"The babies are fine. We do have an announcement that concerns them, but they are perfectly healthy."

Henry visibly relaxes and joins everyone else at the table.

"Ava," Emma says. "There are only ten chairs. Why don't you grab the desk chair and pull it over?"

"That's okay," Ava says. "This seems like a knights of the round table, family type meeting. I'll just hang out over at the kid's section."

"No," Emma protests. "We invited you to this thing. You should sit at the table."

"I'm good," Ava says. "I can still hear everything from ten feet away, plus I can color this sweet picture of Snow White talking to a bird."

"You sure?" Emma asks. After Ava nods in reassurance, Emma looks toward Regina at the other end of the table.

Regina takes a deep breath and begins speaking.

"I guess we can get started," she says. "Earlier today, Granny brought to our attention that the babies are due during a full moon on the summer solstice, an extremely rare occurrence which hasn't happened in 70 years. There are some other factors that make us believe the babies may be very special."

Henry perks up. "Like Savior special?"

"We don't know," Regina says. "Possibly."

"What are the other factors?" Maleficent asks.

"They were conceived during a super harvest blood moon," Emma replies with a smile. "They're also the products of true love and we were married during a full moon, so they'll be born into a blessed marriage."

Maleficent and Zelena exchange curious glances.

Emma finishes stuffing the folders, which she then divides into two stacks and gives half of the folders to each person on either side of her, telling them to take one and pass the rest down the table.

"These have copies of moon cycle charts," Emma explains. "And solstice calendars that Regina says can help explain what makes the babies special."

"Yes," Regina continues. "And while Emma and I were celebrating their uniqueness, it got us thinking that they could potentially become a target in some way."

"Target?" David asks. "By who?"

"We don't know," Emma says. "This is just a preliminary, precautionary, and preparatory type meeting to brainstorm. Henry was once targeted for being the truest believer and again just for being mine and Regina's son. So the products of true love plus all the other moon and sun stuff, that could mean they'll have powerful magic, and just by being our kids...our youngest have a good chance of becoming targets, too."

"Things have been peaceful here for a long time now," Regina says. "And while we are hoping it isn't just the calm before a storm, we would also rather have a plan. Almost everyone here has experienced a traumatic birth. Either as the child, the parent, or the perpetrator. Sorry, Snow."

"Sorry, Snow," Zelena adds.

"Sorry, Maleficent," Snow says.

"Now," Regina continues, "Emma and I would love for history not to repeat itself and we are asking all of you here today to help us protect our family."

Affirmative promises and vows are given by everyone.

"Thank you," Regina says. "We are the leaders of this town, and since Rumple left with his young family, among us are the most powerful magic users."

"Shouldn't Blue be here?" Snow asks.

"There was an incident earlier today," Emma says. "She has other things to deal with. Tink can fill her in if we decide we need her help."

"'If'?" Snow asks, looking offended.

"I'm not sure I trust her," Emma says. "She's always seemed shady to me."

"Since when?"

"Since August told me she lied to you about only one person being able to go through the tree. It sent two through and she knew it. And the tree in the other dream world sent three people through. So maybe she doesn't know shit. Plus she never answered any of Regina's wishes upon stars when she was a little girl and her mom was being an abusive bitch. Then when one fairy finally did try to help her, Blue took away her magic and banished her to Neverland."

Snow starts to say something else but Regina interrupts. "We can discuss Blue later. First things first, we need eyes and ears everywhere, to be on the look out for visitors and new residents, and to listen for anyone expressing negativity toward Emma or myself or our children."

"Recon," Henry says.

"Exactly," Emma says. "Reconnaissance, scouting, and research is what we need right now. When I go on maternity leave, Dad will be in charge of the sheriff's station. Until then we'll work together as a team. Maleficent as the parks and recreation director along with Tink our city clerk and Kathryn our city attorney who couldn't be here, will all be acting as team mayors while Regina is on maternity leave. Until then, Regina is still HBIC."

"HBIC?" David asks.

"Head bitch in charge," Emma says, winking at Regina. "They can all keep on eye out for new residents, sudden transfers of property, I don't know. Strangers applying for fishing or hunting licenses. Things that look suspicious on paper. Mom, I need you to rally up the princess brigade."

"Princess brigade?" Snow asks.

"Yes. Ashley at the pre-school, Aurora at the library, you at the grade school, Prince Henry at the high school, and Lily at SBU."

"I'm a princess now?" Lily asks. Tink laughs while Emma continues speaking to Snow.

"Just have everyone keep an eye out for new people and to listen for negative gossip about us. Also, can you still talk to birds or is that just an enchanted forest thing?"

"Yes," Snow replies. "I still can."

"Great, eyes in the sky. Have the birds look for new campers, strangers in the woods, suspicious activities. That sort of thing."

"Alright."

"Granny, you can keep an eye and ear out for people passing through at the diner and the B&B. Also get reports from the dwarves. Strangers asking about work at the mines, picking up prescriptions at the pharmacy, and especially newcomers at the hospital. That's where Greg Mendell ended up. We may need an additional set of eyes in hospital surveillance. I know Sleepy can't help his narcolepsy, but I'd really like for everyone to be awake in the security department if or when it comes to crunch time."

"Got it," Granny says.

"And that brings us to Zelena at her new apothecary shop. You can keep an eye on the convent where you buy most of your inventory, right? And also keep notes on people buying magical ingredients for spells that may also require newborns."

"Holy Shi---take mushrooms," Ava blurts out. "Why am I here?"

"We work in teams," Regina says. "Henry needs someone whom he can confide in and strategize with. You also have access to areas at the high school that Henry doesn't. Girls locker room, bathrooms. And people may not say things around Henry knowing he's our son."

"Right," Emma says. "plus, we trust you. And since you and Henry are practically together 24/7 anyway, it makes sense."

"We aren't together 24/7," Henry protests. "She's two years older than me and we only have one class together."

"Oh," Emma laughs. "We stand corrected."

"Where's my partner?" Zelena asks.

Maleficent gives Zelena a smile. "I'll keep you company on evenings and weekends."

Zelena blinks a few times. "Okay."

Granny chuckles while Lily and Tink exchange looks.

"Yes!" Emma says. "That's brilliant! Combine your magical knowledge. Your two brains together will recognize twice as many spells. Which brings us to number two on the agenda. Regina?"

"Getting Zelena's magic back."

"Right," Emma says. "Crazy smart about magic. It would be super helpful if she could actually cast all of the protection spells she knows. Anyone have any ideas on how to do that?"

"Did Rumple keep his mother's ashes?" Maleficent asks. "Or her wand?"

Emma's eyes grow large. "'Just because something is ashes, doesn't mean it's ruined.' We are not bringing back the black fairy!"

"Of course not," Maleficent says. "But I may be able to transfer her magic, or Zelena's magic that she stole, into an amulet."

"A broach?" Zelena asks.

"Yes," Maleficent answers.

Snow clears her throat. "Belle told me that Rumple put the ashes in a black urn. I'm not sure about the wand."

"Any idea where he stored the urn?" Tink asks. "He didn't register a burial at the cemetery."

"It's not at the shop," Zelena says. "I've been over every inch of it cleaning and painting to open my apothecary. He took everything out. I've found all kinds of empty nooks and crannies. He left nothing behind."

"He must have store everything at his house," Snow says.

"Anyone have a key?" Emma asks. "Or other means of entry that local law enforcement shouldn't know about?"

"Maybe," Maleficent suggests, "a city employee could inspect the house to make sure all of the utilities are disconnected and there are no fire hazards."

Emma looks at Regina. "Is that legal?"

"I can take Deputy Jawline with me," Maleficent says, winking at David. "To keep it official."

"As Mr. Gold's grandson," Henry says. "And his only next of kin in town, I give permission to inspect the house for safety violations."

Regina smiles at Henry and then Emma. "There you go."

"You wouldn't happen to have a key?" Maleficent asks. "Not that I need it, but since we're going by the book for some reason..."

"I know where it is," Henry says.

"Alright, we'll work out the details of that search shortly," Regina says. "Emma and I will be going. I'm sure Rumple sealed anything he deemed dangerous with blood magic. And since Henry is his only blood relative and our son, we will need to be there."

"Agreed," Maleficent says.

Regina opens up the folder in front of her. "We also need all of the magic users or anyone willing to help, to research for spells or anything that stands out about children conceived or born during this unique timeframe. In addition to the lunar charts and solstice calendars we have included a map of Storybrooke that we color coded where each of us live, work, and play. Like Zelena is green..."

"Why does she get green?" Tink asks.

Emma snorts. "Zelena is dark green, you're light green."

Regina shakes her head. "So we've marked her farm house, the apothecary and the preschool dark green, then triangulated those locations to show overlap. Snow's color is white and she also frequents the preschool. Emma is yellow, David is blue, and they both spend a lot of time at the sheriff station and so on."

"Why do all this?" Henry asks.

"Your mom likes maps just as much as you do," Emma says. "Plus it kept her busy while we waited for everyone to get off work."

"Cool."

"It also shows areas of concentration and areas of weakness in our coverage," Regina says. "Like we have Snow and David living to the south, Zelena to the west, Maleficent in the north, while Emma and I live in the center of town. The harbor to the east is completely uncovered."

Lily speaks up. "Tink has an apartment on the waterfront."

"That's great," Emma says. "We really need to watch the harbor."

"Why?" Lily asks.

"Hook," Emma sighs.

"Has anyone heard anything about him?" Regina asks.

"He called Smee," Tink says. "Who was mad at first about being left behind, but now that he has a girlfriend, he's okay with it."

"Who is he dating?" Snow asks.

"She's a waitress at Aesop's tables," Tink says. "The real Aesop. He better be good to her, too. She's a really nice girl."

"Ladies!" Emma says. "Hook?"

"Oh, yeah," Tink says. "Um, he's not very happy. He doesn't think the baby is his."

"Why?" Regina asks.

"The baby has brown eyes. The mother has blue eyes and he doesn't think two blue eyed people can make a brown eyed baby."

Emma looks incredulous. "His father had brown eyes. He told me that himself."

"Was he drunk?" Regina asks. "Seriously. The man has a major rum problem."

"I don't know," Tink answers. "Smee didn't say."

"Mom," Emma whispers, looking at her map. "Tell the seagulls and the swans to be on the lookout for the Jolly Roger. High alert. Just in case."

"Alright, sweetie."

Regina clears her throat and closes her folder. "One last thing and I'll let you all go," she says while looking directly at Emma. "I'm going to need each of you to make a list of any and all skills you have so that we can compile some strategies. Like how Snow can talk to birds and is an excellent marksman in archery."

Emma looks up and smiles at Regina. "Excellent archer," Emma corrects.

Regina rises from her seat and begins walking toward Emma. "And how Charming is a champion swordsman," she says. "How Zelena is a powerful witch. How Maleficent is an immortal dragon."

Emma scoots her chair away from the table as Regina approaches and leans back. Regina takes a seat on one of Emma's knees.

"How you're the Savior and I'm the head bitch in charge." Emma laughs at they rest their foreheads together, ignoring everyone else in the room. "Our babies are well protected, Emma. Everything will be just fine."

"Emma?" Neal interrupts. "I drawed you a picture." He gives them a stick figure drawing of five people, each with either brown or yellow hair and all wearing crowns. "See? It's you and aunt Gina and Henry and the babies. And there's the sun and the moon. And everybody's happy."

Emma smiles at the drawing and gives her brother a one armed hug. "Thank you," she whispers, kissing his head.

"Yes," Henry says. "Operation Momma Bears is a go."

Chapter Text

Three vehicles drive up to the Gold's residence. Regina and Emma in their soccer mom van, Zelena and Maleficent in Zelena's car, and Ava has driven Henry over in her car. They all converge on the curb out front to discuss how they can gain entry to the house.

"Where's Robin?" Regina asks her sister.

"Having a sleepover with cousin-uncle," Zelena says while rolling her eyes. "Did you get the pendant?"

"Yes," Regina answers.

"Henry?" Emma asks, "Did you get the key?"

"Yes," Henry says. "I found it in the vase on dad's grave just after they left town."

"One would think Gold would stop hiding things there," Regina comments.

"I think he knew I would find it," Henry says. "I've been keeping it in my room. I thought I'd cut their grass or rake leaves while they're away and I'd need the key to get to the lawnmower. But the grass never grew. I think he has a preservation spell on the whole property."

"He does," Maleficent says. "I can feel it."

"Well, that's easy enough to remove," Regina says with a wave of her hand.

"I'm sure he has protection spells up," Emma says. "Saving the blood magic for the dangerous stuff."

"I'm hoping he didn't take the ashes with him," Zelena says.

"He left centuries worth of stuff behind before," Henry says. "He probably just took the dagger and whatever they wanted to take. He can make gold to buy whatever they need."

"Only one way to find out," Emma says. "Ready, Regina?"

Regina nods and the two of them put their hands up and let blasts of magic decimate the protection spell over the property.

"I'm gonna go wait in the car," Ava suddenly says. "I'll be the lookout, I guess."

"Okay," Henry says. "I shouldn't be too long. If you see anything..."

"I'll do the honks."

Everyone walks up to the porch and Zelena taps on the door to see if there is another protection spell on the house itself. There is. Emma and Regina quickly disarm that one as well.

Henry finally inserts the key and unlocks the door. "Watch out for booby traps," he says.

"Beg pardon?" Zelena asks.

"He's a big fan of 'Home Alone'." Henry explains. "Said he imagined that's how dad survived in the land without magic all by himself."

"He could have asked," Emma scoffs. "He was a foster kid like me."

"Really?" Henry asks.

"He told me he ran away from home when he was fourteen. When the cops picked him up, they thought he was one of those Amish Rumspringa kids who didn't want to go back home. I never asked why but I guess it was because he was still dressed in the clothes the Darlings gave him. Anyway, he just went with it but wouldn't say where he was from. So he was made a ward of the state, got some paperwork for ID, and stayed in the system until he aged out."

"So he never outsmarted burglars?" Henry asks.

"He ran some pretty cool scams but he never set Joe Pesci's hair on fire."

"Disappointing," Zelena says. "Shall we?"

They all cautiously enter the house and Henry switches on the lights. "Guess the electricity is still connected," he comments.

"Preservation spell or automatic utility bill deduction?" Emma asks.

Regina shakes her head. "I'm not sensing anymore protection spells in this room."

"I don't see any trip wires or paint cans over the doors," Emma says.

"Grandma said he had a magic lab in the basement."

"Grandma Belle?" Emma teases.

"Yep."

"Anyone ever been in here before?" Maleficent asks. "Know where the basement is?"

"This way," Henry says. "I came over for lunch a few Saturdays when I worked in the pawn shop. Got lost looking for the bathroom once."

"Lost, huh?" Emma asks.

Henry shrugs.

"Where is that bathroom?" Regina asks.

Emma laughs. "Potty break for the pregnant women?"

"Oh my god," Zelena huffs. "Can we hurry this along? I'm anxious to get my magic back."

"I don't need to go right now," Regina says. "I'd just like to know to know where it is. Just in case."

Henry smiles. "It's right next to the basement. Come on."

"Maybe I should lead," Maleficent says.

"Why you?" Zelena asks.

"Because I'm the only non-pregnant one here with magic. For now."

Zelena sighs and motions for Maleficent to lead the way, then they all descend the stairs into the basement.

As they enter the lab, Emma is humming 'Rocking Around the Christmas Tree' under her breath. Regina gives her a look and she sighs. "I have 'Home Alone' stuck in my head now," she explains. Regina smiles and turns back to the task at hand.

Henry looks around the room in disappointment. All of the bottles and vials have been cleared away and everything is covered in white drop cloths. A chill suddenly comes over him. "I've got goosebumps," he says.

"It's actually oddly warm down here," Zelena says.

"Blood magic," Regina whispers.

Henry looks around the room again and spots Gold's cane leaning against the door frame and picks it up.

"Robin Hood told me about when my dad was searching through the Dark One's castle."

Henry begins to twirl the cane around like a sword and spins around in a circle. A cabinet shimmers into view on a far wall.

"It worked!" Henry says in disbelief.

"Maybe you should go wait in the car now," Regina says.

"Oh, come on, Mom," Henry protests. "Can't I at least stay until we find out if the ashes and the wand are even in there?"

Emma and Regina exchange glances.

"What if the ashes and the wand themselves are protected by blood magic?" Henry continues.

"Alright," Regina relents. "You can stay but stand clear."

Henry rolls his eyes and walks back to the doorway. Regina motions for Maleficent to open the cabinet.

"Wait a second," Emma says. "Is this too easy?"

"A preservation spell, two protection spells, and blood magic," Zelena says. "It's like a fortress."

Emma nods and motions for Maleficent to continue.

The door squeaks open, barely revealing a black urn and wand, just as a sudden avalanche of marbles spills out making everyone jump back. Regina has a fireball poised to launch when Henry starts laughing hysterically.

Maleficent kneels down and brushes her fingertips across the marbles and shakes her head. "They're just marbles," she says. "Nothing magical about them at all."

"Booby traps," Henry cackles.

"I never knew the Dark One had such an odd sense of humor," Maleficent muses.

"Well," Regina says. "Magic always comes with a price. I guess he thought if someone made it this far, they deserve to face the consequences."

"Oh, shit," Emma says. "I forgot about the price. What if it hurts Henry?"

"I think the blood magic protects him," Regina says. "What if it hurts the babies?"

"Do not speak that into existence," Emma says. "We haven't really even done anything yet."

"And I will be the one attempting to restore Zelena's magic," Maleficent says. "The price to be paid will be mine."

"We can't ask you to do that," Emma says.

"I already owe you a debt for bringing my daughter back to me and convincing her to stay," Maleficent says. "I will pay the price to protect your daughters."

"I'm not sure that's how magic works," Regina says. "But thank you just the same."

"Well, we won't even know if there is a price to be paid unless we try this thing," Zelena says. "Shall we get to it?"

Maleficent places a cautionary hand in front of the cabinet and feeling no magic, proceeds to remove the urn and wand. She sets them on a nearby table.

"Wouldn't it be funny," Henry says, "if you open the urn and peanut brittle snakes jump out?"

Everyone turns to Henry with shocked expressions, then down to the marbles on the floor, and then back to the urn.

"He wouldn't," Emma says.

"It's his mother," Regina whispers.

"Well she was the black fairy," Zelena comments. "And she did use the shears of Destiny to sever him from his savior fate, which took away his courage, and made him seek out becoming the Dark One to gain power in the first place."

"Only one way to find out," Maleficent says as she begins to unscrew the lid. "Ugh," she moans, failing to budge it on the first try. "Tougher than a jar of pickles."

"Mmm," Emma sighs. "Pickles."

The lid finally gives and Maleficent gently unscrewed it completely. No snakes. Everyone exhales.

"Alright," Maleficent says. "Do you have the pendant?"

"Yes." Regina removes Zelena's pendant from her pocket and hands it over.

"This looks kind of destroyed," Maleficent says.

Zelena takes a look and agrees.

"Weren't you born with magic?" Emma asks. "Like you had magic before you had the pendant, right?"

"Yes," Zelena answers.

" Maybe you don't need the pendant at all," Regina says.

"It does seem like an unnecessary vulnerability," Maleficent comments.

"It's kind of like the dagger. Except if someone takes it, you aren't under their control, you don't have any magic at all."

"Do you think you can transfer the magic directly to me?" Zelena asks.

"I think so," Maleficent says. "You definitely look stronger than that little trinket."

Maleficent picks up the wand and looks at Zelena. "Ready?"

"Yes," Zelena says. "Do it."

Maleficent points the wand toward the ashes. The whole urn begins to glow with a green aura which then travels back to the wand. Maleficent then points the wand toward Zelena and the green stream travels toward her. Zelena inhales the magic, her eyes glow green for a moment, then she smiles. "Yes," she sighs.

"You did it," Regina says as a smile spreads across her face.

"Thank you," Zelena gushes.

"You're welcome," Maleficent whispers. "Let's get these ashes put away quickly." She screws the lid back on tightly and places the urn back in the cabinet. "We should seal the cabinet up again. Whose blood magic do we use?"

"Mine and Regina's," Emma says.

"So no one can open it again except your babies?" Zelena asks.

"And make them an even bigger target?" Regina asks.

"Only if both of us are dead," Emma says.

"Not helping," Regina snaps.

"Well, no matter whose magic we use," Emma says, "someone becomes a target."

"We should all seal it," Zelena says. "Maleficent seals the urn, I seal the cabinet, Regina seals the house, and Emma seals the property. That way only all four of us could get back to the urn."

"Or all four of our daughters," Emma comments.

"Or three daughters and me," Henry says. "Lily and I will protect the little ones, at least until they can protect themselves. And most likely long after that, too."

"All right," Regina says. "We all four seal it and make a pact to tell no one how it's sealed."

"Are we going to all become blood brothers?" Emma asks. "Because I'm going to need complete blood work-ups from two of you first."

"No," Regina laughs.

"Unbreakable vow like Harry Potter?"

"No. Just a pact among family and friends. We all have children possibly at risk. I don't think blood vows are necessary."

"Agreed," everyone says.

Maleficent proceeds to seal the urn. Then Zelena seals the cabinet.

"We forgot to put the marbles back in there," Emma whispers. "Oh, shit," she says walking toward the table. "We forgot to put the wand back in there, too."

Emma picks up the wand just as a cacophony of screeching seagulls descend on the house, dozens of which begin pecking on the basement window.

A car horn outside suddenly starts honking non-stop as everyone's cell phones begin ringing.

"What the Hell?" Emma asks. "This is some Alfred Hitchcock shit."

Henry checks his phone. "Ava says the house is covered with seagulls and there are swans in the yard. Half of the gulls are flying back and forth between the house and the harbour."

Everyone else checks their phones, reading similar messages from various sources.

"Hook," Regina whispers. "Snow must have already told the birds to be on high alert for the Jolly Roger."

"Looks like I got my magic back just in time," Zelena says.

"One way to find out,"Maleficent says.

Chapter Text

Emma takes Regina's hand and guides her through the marbles. "Glide like you're ice skating," she whispers to her wife.

Everyone carefully makes their way toward the stairs. They all exit the house and Henry locks the door. Regina quickly puts up a protection spell and all of the seagulls suddenly take flight heading back towards the harbor.

All eyes are on the sky, watching as the birds disappear just as quickly as they had arrived. Only a few swans remain on the lawn as everyone moves to leave the porch. That's when they notice the lone figure dressed in black walking up the street.

"Oh, shit," Emma says. "It really is him."

"Swan!" Hook bellows. "I came as soon as I heard! The winds brought me swiftly to your shores and the birds brought me directly to your feet."

"What are you talking about?" Emma asks, stepping in front of Henry and Regina. Maleficent and Zelena close ranks on either side of the Swan-Mills family.

Hook gestures toward Emma's noticeable pregnancy. "The baby of course," he says. "Smee had some ridiculous story about it being Regina's baby. But I didn't believe that for a second."

Regina flexes her fireball fingers as she glares at Hook. Emma gently takes Regina's hand into her own, quietly calming her down.

"Oh, hello, your majesty," Hook says, ignoring the women's hand holding.

"Hook," Regina acknowledges, stepping forward to reveal her own pregnancy to the pirate. "You may begin addressing my wife as 'your majesty' now as well."

"Wife?" Hook asks momentarily amused. His eyes roam back and forth between protruding bellies, then shift toward the matching wedding bands. "Funny, I don't recall signing any divorce papers."

"Much like you don't recall signing a marriage license or a wedding certificate, I suppose," Regina trolls. "Did Smee leave out that part?"

"He was well into his cups, love. Who would believe such a tale? The two of you married? It's ludicrous."

Emma scoffs. "It wasn't so ludicrous when you were accusing me of bedding Regina when I so much as had dinner with her."

"Pleasures of the flesh and the bonds of holy matrimony are two very different things, Swan."

"Well, as of Christmas, they are one and the same."

Hook sputters, at a loss for words. "Emma, no. The queen has bewitched you with her feminine wiles or cursed you in some way. Come and have a drink with me. We can work all of this out."

"She can't drink with you!" Regina hisses. "She's pregnant, you pickled brain pirate!"

"One drink won't hurt! I read it in one of those pregnancy books the lass had."

"Of course that would be what Captain Morgan remembers."

"Hook," Emma interrupts. "I do not want to have a drink with you. I don't want to go anywhere with you. I just want to go home with my wife and our son and look at college brochures and buy baby clothes online."

"Quite the exciting life, Swan."

"Yes, it is. And I love everything about my life now. I would really prefer not to have any high adventures in the foreseeable future unless it involves SAT scores or first steps."

"This is really what you want? Domestic bliss with the evil queen?"

"With all my heart."

"But I love you! You're my happy ending!"

Emma takes a deep breath. "You got another woman pregnant."

"It's not my baby! We did a cheek swab test. Her ex..."

"You still slept with her. If you really loved me, you wouldn't have done that."

"That's rich coming from you and all of your family dinners, private magic lessons, and girls nights. I'm not a fool, Swan."

"All of those were innocent occasions. You saw things that weren't there."

Hook starts laughing. "Innocent? You've been in love with her since we met. Since before we met! I've only been gone five minutes and you've already married her!"

Regina squeezes Emma's hand and interrupts Hook's tirade. "Emma genuinely cared for you. And she was faithful to the vows she took."

"Says you, your majesty. Smee told the baby is due on the summer solstice. And I can count to nine."

"Even with both of your boots on?"

Hook takes a step forward and is immediately accosted by hissing swans forming a barrier between him and occupants of Mr. Gold's front porch.

"Why are you here, Hook?" Emma demands.

"I want a paternity test."

"What?!" Everyone gasps.

"I distinctly remember a broken condom and you forget to take your pills all the time. The timing lines up. There's room for doubt. Or hope."

"Hope?" Emma asks. "I didn't realize you wanted to be a father so badly."

"I didn't...I mean ready-made kids are fine. Walking and talking and toileting by themselves. A pirate ship is no place for a baby."

"Then why do you want one now?"

"Maybe I didn't know I wanted it, until I almost had it, then lost it."

"This is awkward," Henry whispers.

"Well, there is no need for a paternity test," Regina says. "Emma and I just got some test results today. She's carrying my baby and I'm carrying hers. They're full siblings with the same two parents. Just like her and little Neal."

"Forgive me if I don't take your word for it."

"It's true," Emma says. "The lab report is in the car."

"So this two women making true love babies nonsense is real?"

"It's not nonsense," Regina says. "And it's very real."

Hook looks toward the parked cars, up at the sky, and then to Emma again. "I need to go back," he says.

"Back where?"

"Back there! To the enchanted forest or the waters of Neverland. Anywhere but here. I don't belong here. Not in Storybrooke and not out in your world. I came here with Cora. She's gone now. I came to get my revenge on the crocodile. Now he's gone, too. I stayed in town for you and well...your heart has always belonged to her...so just send me back to where I do belong. Maybe I'll find a nice girl there and settle down."

Regina sighs. "We don't have any magic beans."

Hook looks at the united front of Emma and Regina, flanked by Maleficent and Zelena, and all protecting Henry in the back. Then he notices what Emma is holding.
"Is that the magic wand from the crocodile's vault?"

"Uh...yeah..." Emma replies, remembering she still has the wand in her hand.

"You can reopen the time portal!"

"And send you back in time? Are you insane? So you can alter history to where I'm never born? Or where Henry is never born?"

"I would never want a world where you or the lad were never born..." Hook scrambles for a solution to his predicament, then his face brightens. "Send me back to that wish realm place. You and Henry were both there. Send me back to just after that queen was banished. I'll steer well clear of your kingdom. Give me a...what do you call it...a do over."

"That place isn't real. It's like a dream."

"Isn't it real though? Didn't the queen bring that Robin Hood back here? How was that possible if he wasn't real?"

Emma looks at Regina. "Would that mean you really killed my parents and we abandoned Henry?"

"There was already a Hook there," Regina says to Hook. "It'll create a paradox."

"Maybe that was me...in my future?"

"He didn't even know my name," Emma counters.

"Maybe it was me but I knew I couldn't interfere with your efforts to get home to your boy...but I still wanted to see you one last time."

Emma and Regina look at each other and silently debate the pros and cons.

"I don't even think it's possible," Emma whispers.

"Sure, it is," Hook says. "You have all of the time travel spell ingredients right here. Regina's wisdom, your courage, Henry's true love. Or the author's wisdom and Regina's true love. Either way. Plus the innocence of the babes."

A fireball materializes in Regina's hand.

"But..." Hook continues, "you don't even need all of that with the wand that can recreate any spell."

"Give us minute," Emma says as she snuffs out the fireball and pulls Regina toward the back of the porch.

"Yes, of course," Hook mumbles as he observes the remaining swans sitting down in a line between him and the others. "Talk amongst yourselves."

"Okay, consultation time," Emma says to everyone else. "Is this even possible? And what are the risks to sending him back in time?"

"It's absolutely possible," Maleficent says. "And it isn't our timeline, so the risks to us are nil."

"There is overlap though," Zelena answers. "The two of them went there. What if we send him back and he does stay away from their kingdom but still does something that changes how they get back here?"

"The ripple effect," Henry says, clearing his throat. "One little change creates undulating waves of changes. But what if he really is the same Hook from over there?"

"Seriously?" Emma asks.

Henry shrugs. "Was he even in the enchanted forest when the curse was cast? I thought he was in the safe haven with Grandma Cora. If our worlds were the same up until that point, there shouldn't have even been a Hook in the wish realm. What if sending him back is what helped you get home?"

"We are definitely delving into Marty McFly theory here," Emma sighs.

"Maybe we're already in a causal loop," Henry continues. "And we have to send him back so that our timeline plays out the way that it did. Plus there's the whole you going over there and Mom going to save you thing that already changed their timeline by killing my grandparents and releasing an unhinged Dark One on everyone."

Regina touches Emma's hand. "Maybe we can send Hook back and tell him to do one little thing that will make that Henry not be alone."

"This is confusing," Emma mumbles. "How?"

"I have an idea," Regina whispers as her eyes sparkle. "Henry, can I have a pen and some paper?"

"Sure," Henry answers, then digs a pen and notebook out of his backpack. Regina takes the implements to the porch banister and composes a letter.

 

Dearest Snow

Please be advised I have a guest now unattended in the highest room of the winter palace. She is doubly cursed, as she cannot leave the chamber nor age until she is retrieved by her true love. He is a most powerful immortal who will be very put out if any harm should befall his beloved.

I had planned to send her home when I cast my dark curse, as the purpose of her visit would have been fulfilled. However, when you banished me, you also removed my ability to break the spells that bind her within those four walls.

Please see to her comforts. Have my bed, furnishings, and books sent up to her chamber so that she might be warm and entertained. Protect and maintain her in a manner befitting her station and as an honored guest of the royal family. You do not want to make an enemy of her true love. Remember the old proverb, the enemy of my enemy is my friend.

Also give her this letter so that she may know you are not at fault for her extended stay and so that she can relay this information when she is reunited with her soul mate.

Regina

 

She signs the letter with a flourished capital S that resembles a swan and adds a miniature M atop its head. A cryptic symbol for Swan-Mills that matches the motif on the nursery's new wallpaper.

"You really Rapunzeled Belle?" Emma asks, in disbelief.

"The door is enchanted to send her back inside if she tries to leave. Rumple can break that spell easily. And I had to experiment with freezing time somehow before casting the curse."

"That's fucked up...but you aren't the same person you were back then. What's your thinking behind the letter?"

"If Snow follows my orders, then that Dark One won't find bones and he won't go into a homicidal rage. And if that Belle has him as whipped as our Belle has Gold, then that Henry will still have grandparents to raise him."

"I'm all for any Henry not being alone, but won't that change what happened while we were there?"

"Only minimally. Their Rumple will either rescue Robin and I from the Sheriff of Nottingham but then set us free as thanks for seeing that Belle remained safe. Or he'll be too happy being with Belle to care what happens to us, leaving Robin and I to escape on our own...And maybe my castle won't fall into such disrepair."

"What if Snow doesn't follow your orders?"

"Then nothing changes but at least we tried."

Emma nods as she thinks about the plan. "But how will they know that Henry is their grandson? It was a well guarded secret that Sir Bae was the son of the Dark One. He only confessed it to me a year or two after he had escaped from Neverland. And I didn't tell my parents until after he died. But Sir Henry knew."

Regina thinks for a minute and then turns to Henry. "Do you still have that picture on your phone of you, Gold, and Belle at Gideon's birthday party?"

"Yeah."

"I need to see it, please. And place the house key on top of the letter."

Henry pulls the key from his pocket and sets it down in the top margin of the notebook paper, then finds the picture his mother asked for and hands his phone over to her.

With a wave of her fingers and a flash of golden smoke, Regina copies the smiling selfie of Henry with Gold and Belle in the form of a sketch onto the empty space at the bottom of the letter.

"Now pick up the key," she tells Henry.

Henry obliges and the drawing disappears.

"Now touch the paper," she orders.

Henry places a single finger on the page and the sketch reappears.

"Cool," he whispers.

"The picture will only appear to those who have either touched that key or to their wish realm counterparts. So when Snow gives Belle the letter, as proof that releasing Belle is out of her hands, the picture will appear only to Belle. She'll probably believe it is her with Rumple and Baelfire, but it will give her hope that her imprisonment will end. The picture will also appear to Rumple and eventually to Sir Henry as a sort of verification that they are meant to be together."

"And Sir Henry can verify that Baelfire is his father," Emma adds. "Maybe even show them his portrait in the main hall of my parents castle."

"I wish we could save them, too," Regina says. "But I'm afraid even if I could figure out a way to do that, it would alter our timeline too much. I'm sorry Sir Henry has been alone all this time. Maybe this can save him from all that loneliness and he can rule his kingdom in peace."

"Or he could become a revenge thirsty dictator with a dark one enforcer."

"Have faith in our son, Miss Swan."

"You just thought up all of that in five minutes?" Zelena asks.

"I've spent many nights thinking about what I would change in that world if given a chance. Things that wouldn't change the course of my life but would improve the lives of others. This plan has the best of intentions. It gives Hook the second chance he's asking for, saves Belle's life, and saves the entire realm from a deranged Dark One. Most importantly, it gives Sir Henry a second family."

"But how will we know if it works?" Emma asks. "There are a lot of ifs, coulds, and maybes here."

"Faith and hope," Regina answers. "And maybe you'll have new memories about a girl being Rapunzeled in the evil queen's castle."

"Yeah," Emma muses. "I'm just worried that if this is Hook's second chance, he didn't seem to be making the most of it."

"Drunk and well fed, you mean? Sounds like a nice retirement for his old age."

"Your majesties?" Hook calls out, backing away from a hissing swan. "Have you reached a verdict? My...life...is hanging in the balance."

Emma rolls her eyes and takes a deep breath. "Yes, we have. We're going to try to send you back, if I can open the portal, on one condition."

"Pray tell, what condition is that, love?"

Regina folds the letter impossibly small, then rolls it into a compact scroll. "You have to give this to the first messenger bird you see and have them deliver it to Snow White."

"That's it? Pass a note to the new queen? In exchange for traveling to a world where you're powerless and the two of you never cross paths? Done."

"It's important that our paths don't cross either, Hook," Emma adds. "Yours and mine. It could alter the course of that timeline in unpredictable ways."

"Relax, your majesty. You'll be just a babe in arms when I get there. I have no interest in seeing that."

"Are you sure you want to do this? You could stay here and try to be friends."

"And watch the two of you mentally undressing each other over pancakes at Granny's every morning? No thank you."

"You can't go after the Dark One, either," Regina says.

"Don't need to. He's powerless, locked up in an inescapable cell, and his true love is dead. Short of killing him myself, what better revenge could there be?"

Emma tilts her head as she stares at Hook in bewilderment. "I thought you liked Belle?"

"I do. Nothing against her, she just has terrible taste in men."

Regina places a magical seal on the letter that can only be broken by its intended recipient. She hands the scroll to Hook and he tucks it into the pocket of his red vest.

"Will you be taking your boat?" Regina asks.

"My ship goes with me, if you please."

"Well, then. Let's go to the harbor. After you."

An interesting procession makes its way toward the waterfront. It is led by Hook, who is followed by a waddling trio of swans, then the quartet consisting of a dragon, a witch, and two magical queens bring up the rear.

Henry decides (after Regina strongly suggests it) to join Ava in her car and watch the proceedings from a safe distance.

"Are we doing the right thing?" Emma whispers to Regina. "This a hell of a lot of faith to put into a man who has been known to hold a blood thirsty grudge for a few hundred years."

"Honestly, I don't know but he really doesn't want to stay here and without a magic bean, there's no other realm he can go to right now."

"The whole timeline thing bothers me. I changed one little thing when I went back and was almost not born. What kind of damage can he do probably on purpose?"

"I have faith that he won't try to interfere with the timeline up until Sir Henry is born. Hopefully by then he will have found that nice girl he's looking for and started a family of his own."

"What if he gets there and goes straight after the powerless queen? We never did find out what happened to her. He could have killed her for all we know."

"I think if she had died, we would have heard about it. Everyone was too afraid of me and my return after thirty years if they believed I was dead."

"Unless they were afraid of your ghost."

"Ghosts aren't real, dear?"

"Seriously?"

"I really don't know."

"Oh my god," Emma laughs. "You are such a bitch."

"I did put a forgetting spell in the protective seal on my letter to Snow, just as an extra security measure. If he tries to break the seal before sending it...he will forget about everything that has happened to him since the curse was cast."

"Forever?"

"The spell isn't as powerful as a potion, so it will fade over time, and gradually his memories will return. Hopefully by then..."

"He'll have a family of his own and forget how much he hates us."

"That's the plan."

"Still seems risky."

"Faith and hope. And trust in Henry's causal loop theory."

They finally reach the harbor and everyone waits as Hook unties his ship from the pier then climbs on board.

"Sure you don't want to stay?" Emma asks.

"Get on with the spell casting," Hook says, pointing to the water.

"You have to swear you won't interfere with the timeline," Emma says. "On your mother's good name."

"That's bad form, Swan."

"We could always use another lobster boat," Regina teases.

"I swear on my mother's good name, I won't intentionally interfere with your timelines."

Emma glances at Regina who nods back. Emma takes a deep breath and concentrates on where and when to open the time portal. She then points the wand toward the harbor waters as magic bursts forth from its tip.

A fiery ring appears on the surface of the water and Hook directs his ship into its center. The Jolly Roger with Captain Hook on board disappears within the swirling vortex. Then the portal shrinks and vanishes altogether.

Chapter Text

Regina flips through the worn pages of her book, skimming through the underlined passages she knows by heart.

'Early labor can last 8 to 12 hours... active labor can last 3 to 5 hours... transition phase...30 minutes to 2 hours...'

She goes over the calculations once more, tapping her chin with the list of potential baby names she's been using for a bookmark.

19 hours. And that's just to get to 10 centimeters.

Emma moans in her sleep, distracting Regina long enough to wonder if her wife is having a pleasant dream or reliving Henry's painful drug-free birth.

'Do not try nipple stimulation until you have reached or have passed your due date.'

She takes a deep breath, drops her book onto the bed, then finishes her red raspberry leaf tea. She sets the cup back down on the nightstand and picks up her phone, checking the time.

12:05 a.m.

She opens her email and reads the latest report from the Princess Brigade.

'No new threats or potential dissent among the citizens or visitors of Storybrooke. The First Annual Midsummer Celebration tomorrow should be a peaceful and happy day for everyone!'

Emma moans softly and thrusts her hips slightly and Regina sighs. Definitely a sex dream.

Regina rifles through the top nightstand drawer in search of a phone charger, giggling at the odds and ends that Emma deems necessary for bedside usage. Breath mints, ponytail holders, nail clippers. No charger.

She maneuvers herself around to reach the bottom drawer and finally finds a charger sitting neatly atop the leather harness and two toy tote bags. She looks over her shoulder at Emma who is breathing normally again and smiles.

She plugs in her phone then carefully stands up and walks over to the window, parting the curtains and letting the full moon shine into the room.

"'Gina?"

"I'm here."

Emma stretches then sits up while rubbing her eyes. "You okay?"

"I'm fine. Just couldn't sleep."

"What time is it?"

"Just after midnight. "

"Don't move." Emma picks up her phone and snaps a picture of Regina standing in the moonlight.

"Seriously, Emma? I have bed hair and no make up."

"You look like a goddess. The moon pales in comparison."

"Charmer. "

Emma smiles and puts her phone back on the nightstand. "Is it officially a full moon now or will it be full later?"

"Full enough for wolf's time according to Granny."

"Well, she should know."

Regina looks out the window once more and exhales.

"What's keeping you awake so late?" Emma asks.

"What were you dreaming about?" Regina counters.

Emma's mouth drops open and she blushes slightly. "Was I being loud again? I'm sorry. I don't know how to control that."

Regina chuckles. "Was I at least in it?"

"Oh, yes. You were the star."

Regina smiles and lets her gaze return to the moon.

"You should come back to bed," Emma suggests. "You need your sleep if you still want to get up early and watch the solstice sunrise."

Regina nods but doesn't move.

"Is something on your mind?"

Regina shrugs and shakes her head like she doesn't know the reason.

Emma's lie detector pings so she nods then looks around the room. She spots Regina's abandoned book in the middle of the bed and picks it up. She flips through the pages, looks over the baby name list, and lays the open book face down beside her.

"We really are cutting it down to the wire with this name thing, huh?"

Regina hums a noncommittal response.

"I'm telling you, Soliel-Moon is perfect," Emma teases. "A summer solstice slash full moon baby. That's just a golden opportunity."

"And name our child after an actress you had a crush on all through your adolescence? I don't think so."

Emma laughs and looks over the list Regina has comprised. One name in particular is underlined and has stars beside it. "I like this name, too."

"Which one?"

"The one with all the bells and whistles. It was kind of popular when I was growing up but I never saw it spelled this way. "

One of Regina's eyebrows arches upward. "How popular?"

"At this one school that I went to, there were three girls with that name. And they all hung out together. Sort of a Heathers type situation."

"Did they bully you?"

Emma shakes her head. "No. They weren't in my grade and I didn't go to that school for very long. I was just aware of who they were."

"Did you have a crush on any of them?"

"No."

"Did you ever sleep with anyone with that name?"

"You're ridiculous," Emma laughs. "No. I have no baggage attached to the name. I just always thought it was pretty."

"Good. Because I really like it. It means laurel crown. Which symbolizes victory and leadership."

"So we're going with white snow and laurel crown? Born to be badass queens."

Regina nods and gazes back toward the moon.

"Gina?"

"Hmm? "

"What else is worrying you? What's keeping you awake?"

Regina points toward the book.

"This book? What about it? You've read it cover to cover at least three times."

"Read the page I had marked."

Emma flips the book over, scans the page and then whistles. "The Stages of Labor... That can be pretty scary. I was terrified before Henry was born. But you know...The pain is only temporary and fades away really fast. Plus, we've been practicing all that breathing stuff. And I'm sure Marilyn will give you drugs if you change your mind and yell loud enough."

Regina smiles and walks back toward the bed, settling in next to Emma. "That's reassuring but I'm not really worried about that part." She takes the book and points out several passages.

"Early labor can last up to 12 hours... active labor can last 5 hours... transitional labor can last 2 hours...That's 19 hours! Just to get to 10 centimeters!"

"Yeah, but the pain isn't constant. See... 30 minutes between contractions...5 minutes..."

"I'm not worried about the pain. I'm worried about the nineteen hours."

"I'm not following."

Regina points to the moon. "It's after midnight. It's the summer solstice. The babies are due today and labor can take over 19 hours and there only 24 hours in a day!"

Emma reads the text again. "You're only going by the longest times. It says 8 to 12 hours...3 to 5 hours...thirty minutes to two hours. Eight hours, three hours, and thirty minutes add up to eleven and a half hours."

"So we have between five hours and twelve and a half hours to go into labor..."

Emma squints in confusion. "You do know babies are rarely born on their due dates, right? Just because they're due today doesn't mean they'll be born by this time tomorrow."

"Yes, I know statistics say only five percent of babies are born on their due dates, but that's the thing. Everything about our pregnancies has been textbook precise. From the timing of morning sickness to feeling fetal movements to measurements and development...Everything has been within the expected timeframes and right on schedule."

"So we're not having badass queens? We're having punctual poindexters?"

"You think I'm being silly."

"No I don't. I'm sorry. I'm just trying to make you laugh."

"It's just since Granny told us that they were conceived during a full moon and an eclipse... and that they're due during a full moon and solstice ... I've felt that these babies are destined for something unique."

Emma smiles. "Maybe even special?"

"Exactly."

"You know more about fate and predestination and all that than I do, so I trust you. "

They exchange a quick kiss and snuggle closer.

"Are you worried we'll be in labor for the most of the day?"

"No, I'm worried that if labor doesn't start soon, they won't be born on the solstice."

"Two minutes ago you said you were sure they would be born on their due date."

"Well they are half you and you're never on time for anything."

Emma scoffs. "Rude."

"Being late is rude."

"Well, I'm a queen now and a queen is never late. Everyone else is just early."

Regina laughs. "You can't play the queen card when the other person is also a queen."

"Touche. But they are also half you, too. And you're never late for anything."

"This is true."

"Maybe they'll average out somewhere in the middle. Our waters break around noon and labor only lasts eleven hours."

"That's cutting it too close."

"We go into labor during the sunrise and they're born around noon?"

"That would be acceptable."

"Well, worrying about it all night can't be good for you. We should sleep while we can."

"Will you do a favor for me?" Regina asks.

"Always."

"Will you check and see if I've dilated any?"

"You want me to finger you?"

"It's just that I've tried and I can't really reach and get the angle right."

Emma's mouth drops open. "You've tried? Where was I when you were trying?"

Regina leans back against her pillow and smirks. "You were right here beside me. Probably dreaming about fucking me with one of those toys in your drawer."

Emma's mouth drops open once more. "How do you know these things?"

"Which one was it?"

"The one from the dining room incident."

"Hmm, the Eternal Swan. My belated birthday gift for you. Such fond memories."

"Okay. Do you want me to give you a gynocological exam or do you want me to fuck you?"

"Both? Well, one really depends on the other. If I haven't dilated any, I definitely want you to fuck me."

"With the toy?"

"Yes."

"And if you have started to dilate?"

"We can still have fun in other ways."

Emma smiles. "You want an orgasm to release some hormone to induce labor, don't you? "

"You don't mind do you? "

"I don't mind at all. Getting you off for hormonal releases is how this all got started."

"I am horny, too. Plus the book says we have to wait six weeks after the babies are born to have sex again."

"Six weeks is a very long time."

"We better make this time count."

"Give me two minutes to pee and wash my hands."

Emma disappears into the bathroom while Regina stands to retrieve the toy and lube from the bottom drawer and places them atop the nightstand. She removes her panties then gets back on the bed, reclining against the pillows with her nightgown hiked up to mid thigh.

Emma returns holding her wet hands in the air like a surgeon. "Should I wear gloves? Like doctor exam gloves? I've never checked a cervix before. Should we put a condom on the toy? I mean if you haven't dilated and we use it. Shit, I don't have any condoms."

Regina looks over at the toy then back to Emma. "You washed it after the dining room incident, right? And it's been inside the cloth bag since then?"

"Yes, of course. But that was way back before the wedding. It's been what? Over six months?"

Regina picks up the toy and gives it to Emma. "Wash it again. And the hand towels are fresh. We can skip the latex. Clean and dry will be fine."

Emma returns to the bathroom then calls out over the sound of running water. "I'm going to use the antiseptic mouthwash, too. Because I read that part about nipple stimulation releasing hormones to induce labor. Plus if I have to start sharing those double D's in less than a day, I'm getting in some titty time."

Regina laughs then lifts her breasts up and pushes them together, creating perkier cleavage. "If you must," she teases.

Emma enters the bedroom once more holding the toy on a towel like a surgical tray.

"You don't have to be quite so clinical," Regina whispers.

"Of course I do," Emma counters. "Can't contaminate my baby momma's birth canal."

"I think that particular term of endearment is only applicable when the parents in question are not married."

Emma shrugs. "Still. If we're gonna play doctor, we're gonna play it right." She places the towel on the bed beside Regina then crawls over and straddles her wife's thighs. Reaching forward, she caresses Regina's rounded abdomen as well as her own. "The logistics of this should be interesting. I'll try not to bump baby bumps."

Regina smiles and places her hand on top of Emma's. "We're having babies," she sighs.

"We're having babies," Emma repeats, gazing into her wife's eyes. "So how do you want to do this? Nipple stimulation first or check your cervix first?"

"Check my cervix first. That way the nipple stimulation can also be foreplay."

"Foreplay started when you asked me to finger you," Emma teases.

Regina tugs on Emma's hand pulling her forward for a kiss. They kiss slowly and deeply until they are both breathless.

Emma places soft kisses down Regina's chin and neck. "How about we do them at the same time?" she asks. "Get you nice and wet so we don't need lube?"

"Do what you want," Regina moans. "Just touch me."

Emma lifts one knee letting Regina spread her legs and leaving Emma straddling one thigh. She lifts the hem of Regina's nightgown higher as she simultaneously pulls the neckline aside exposing both areas she desires most. She teases the turgid tip with her tongue while her fingers tickle Regina's inner thigh.

"You'll have to talk me through this," Emma whispers as she encircles Regina's opening. "I have no idea what I'm looking for."

Regina gasps as Emma's mouth finally envelopes her nipple and one fingertip pushes inside.

Emma sucks while slowly thrusting her finger, sucking a little harder and going a little deeper with each insertion.

Regina's breath is ragged. "It should feel like...puckered lips...at the other end..."

"The other end of what?"

"Just feel with your fingertips... when you get...all the way...inside..."

"I'm not feeling another end, baby. And you are so tight. And wet. "

"Go deeper..."

Emma stretches her finger as far as it will reach, only feeling tightness around the digit. "Should I add another finger? Maybe I can reach further? My middle finger is longer."

Regina only nods.

Emma withdraws her finger completely and then begins the process over again with two fingers, slowly going deeper with each thrust.

Regina resists rocking her hips. She grips the pillow with one hand while the other clutches onto the back of Emma's shirt.

"I think I feel it," Emma whispers.

"Can you...penetrate it...at all?"

Emma feels around the soft flesh. "No. There's no opening..."

"There is an opening! That's how the baby comes out!"

"Well, it's sealed up tight as a drum. What does that mean?"

"It means dilation hasn't begun yet."

Emma smiles and glances over toward the toy. She resumes her slow thrusting and applies gentle pressure the Regina's clit with her thumb. "It's okay, baby momma," she whispers. "There are still over twenty-three hours left in the day."

Regina moves her legs apart, spreading herself wider and moving the thigh Emma is straddling up just enough for Emma to rub against.

Emma slips the remaining side of Regina's neckline aside, freeing her other breast, and slowly licks and sucks the nipple in time with her thrusts.

Regina slips one hand up Emma's shirt and down the front of her panties, seeking out her wife's clit. Her other hand clenches the back of Emma's head, fingers entangled within long hair, holding her mouth in place.

"Yes," Regina moans. "Faster."

The both speed up their thrusts, keeping time with one another.

Emma hums around Regina's nipple, holding back her eminent orgasm until Regina comes first. She curls the fingers inside Regina with each thrust, seeking out her wife's g-spot. When Regina begins to buck wildly, she starts rubbing her thumb harder against Regina's clit.

Regina's walls contract around Emma's fingers, squeezing and entrapping her digits in place, while Regina moans and contorts against her.

"Fuck," Emma whispers as she finally lets herself slip over the edge. "Love you!"

"Love...you...too..." Regina says as she catches her breath.

Emma kisses her wife's shoulder then her neck. "Dr. Ping better never examine you like that."

Regina snorts. "I can't promise this moment won't flash through my mind from now on whenever I'm in the stir-ups." She wiggles her finger deeper into Emma's panties. "Want me to return the favor?"

"Oh, I came," Emma answers. "Nice one."

"I meant, do you want me to check if your cervix is dilated at all?"

"Oh. I don't know. Have you washed your hands, young lady?"

Regina scoffs. "I used hand sanitizer after I couldn't reach mine."

"Still can't believe I slept through that. Go ahead if you think you can reach it with your cute, short fingers."

Regina smirks and slides her finger inside Emma. "Oh," she gasps. "It's not that far. Very soft. Can't penetrate it though."

"So neither one of us have started dilating yet?"

Regina shakes her head no.

"Oh," Emma coos. "Do you want me to go down on you and make you feel better?"

Regina nods her head yes.

Emma kisses her wife's lips once more and begins her descent. "You just lie back and enjoy, pillow princess. I'll take care of you."

They maintain amused eye contact as Emma moves in between Regina's legs. She crawls backward as she kisses her was down, over, and across breasts and pregnant belly. Their gaze is only broken when Emma's face sinks below the horizon of Regina's baby bump.

Regina gasps as Emma's mouth and tongue invade her intimately. Every inch and surface is licked, every corner and crevice is explored. She grips the sheets as Emma sucks her clit. She bucks her hips as Emma sinks a finger inside.

Emma rides out the undulations, never losing her hold or rhythm.

Regina's back arches as her walls clamp down around Emma's finger once more.

Emma's smiling, shiny face rises back up over Regina's abdomen and into her line of vision.

"Get the toy," Regina whispers.

"You still want to do that? You were so adamant about no toys before. "

"I was worried deep penetration would cause pre-term labor. It's an Old World myth carry over, I realize... But I'm full term now. So..."

"So you aren't anxious anymore because you want to go into labor. Got it."

Emma sits up and back on her heels. She casually lifts her shirt over her head, wipes her face with it then tossed it onto the floor. A fine sheen of perspiration covers her chest, breasts, and swollen abdomen.

Regina gulps.

Emma picks up the toy and Regina reaches toward the nightstand for the lube. Emma squeezes a generous amount onto the egg shaped end and rubs it all over the surface. She then rises up to insert it when she realizes she's forgotten to remove her panties.

Regina magics them away with an impatient wave.

Emma chuckles then slips the toy inside.

"Does it feel alright?" Regina asks. "Any pain or discomfort?"

"Feels fine. Just like it did last time."

"That's good."

"Now, let's get your end ready." Emma says, squeezing more lube onto the still exposed half. She strokes the lubricant all over the toy then moves to align the shaft with Regina's opening.

Emma eases the toy inside her wife with incremental thrusts, watching Regina's face the whole time for any signs of distress. She never loses her smile.

When the toy is fully inside, the women realize their distended abdomens are touching.

"We aren't going to be able to build any kind of speed or friction," Regina laments.

"Not without knocking the babies heads together," Emma adds.

"Shit. I guess I didn't think this part through."

"We both had flat tummies last time."

Regina nods in agreement.

"You know what this means, your majesty..." Emma says, making a spiral motion with her finger. "Face down, ass up."

"That's the way we like to fuck!" Regina laughs as Emma withdraws the toy and moves back just far enough for Regina to flip over.

Emma stops Regina's rotation long enough to remove her nightgown completely and to stack up some pillows in front of her.

When Regina settles into position, Emma leans over first and leaves a hickey on her left cheek.

"Emma!" Regina laughs and tries to wiggle away.

"I can never resist that ass," is Emma's only defense.

"People will see my bare ass tomorrow!"

"It's just a strawberry. It'll fade by noon," Emma adds as she lines up the toy once more. "Besides, everyone already knows I kiss your ass anyway. A little proof for the gossip mill won't matter."

Regina forgets all about the hickey as the toy slowly makes its way back inside via Emma's controlled thrusts.

"You tell me how," Emma whispers.

"Just like that," Regina answers. " Slow and easy."

Emma grips Regina's hips, maintaining balance and control of her motions.

Regina's breathing grows more ragged with each thrust.

"A little faster," Regina whispers.

Emma speeds up slightly as Regina begins to rock backward a bit. Their sweat slickened thighs slap together where they meet.

"Still good?" Emma asks.

"Fuck, yeah."

They continue their steady rhythm until Emma recognizes the signs of Regina's eminent orgasm. She carefully reaches around with one hand to tickle Regina's clit, while her other hand gently teases her wife's puckered hole.

Regina goes off like a rocket.

Emma quickly follows.

Regina collapses into a breathless heap atop the pillows.

Emma extracts to toy from them both and tossed it aside. She kisses Regina's cheek and snuggles in beside her.

"Rest, my queen," she whispers. "Tomorrow will be a busy day. "

Chapter Text

"What the hell?"

Emma is rudely awakened to the incessant sound of clanging bells. Looking around for the source, her eyes land on the antique alarm clock she had stolen from Henry to see if he'd notice one missing. She'd never bothered winding it up to see if it even worked and now she knows it definitely does. She scoots across the bed, reaching out to turn the damn thing off.

The finally silent clock face shows 4:45. Emma thinks. Wonders. Remembers. Sighs. Summer solstice. Watch sunrise with Regina.

"Gina?"

The toilet flushing and faucet running reveal Regina's location and Emma lies back down, trying to recapture a few moments of elusive slumber.

Regina exits the bathroom freshly showered and clad in a terry robe. Emma opens her eyes to watch her wife open the closet and pull out the day's outfit that she knows was picked out at least a week earlier.

"Morning, gorgeous," Emma drolls. "What's up with the tick-tock clock? Your phone alarm broken?"

Regina hangs her sun dress off the closet door and walks toward the lingerie chest to select the day's underwear. "I got bored around 3:30. Thought it would be funny."

Emma rubs her eyes and fakes a laugh. "Hilarious." She finally processes what Regina is doing. "Why are you getting dressed?"

"We have a busy day ahead of us with the Summer Solstice Festival. And you need to get up if you don't want to miss the sunrise."

"Seriously? I thought we'd watch the sunrise in our pajamas and go back to sleep. And the festival doesn't even start until 9:30."

"We are the mayor and the sheriff. We have to go. Plus, Kathryn, Tink, and Maleficent may need our help setting up."

Emma snorts. "We are 40 weeks pregnant and officially on maternity leave. No one is expecting us to help set up."

"We could offer moral support."

"Or we could cuddle for hours here in my bed... do more nipple stimulation... make a brief, obligatory appearance at the festival... and come back here for more... cuddling."

"Maybe," Regina says, dropping her panties back into the drawer. She walks over and kisses her wife. "We would have to stick to just cuddling though. I'm not up for anything more."

"Same," Emma says, wincing.

"You need to get up now though," Regina orders. "Sunrise is in less than ten."

"Yeah, yeah, yeah. Keep your robe on," Emma replies as she stands and makes her way to the bathroom. "And I mean that. Keep your robe on. No clothes yet."

Regina checks out her wife's still-nude-from-the-night-before form. "And you need to actually put your robe on."

"Gotcha," Emma answers as she disappears behind the door.

Regina starts to straighten out the bedsheets, then sits down as a back spasm nearly takes her breath.

"Why were you bored at 3:30?" Emma yells. "Were you awake all night?"

Regina takes deep breaths and blows them out slowly, waiting for the spasm to subside. "I slept," she yells back. "I just kept waking up every hour or so and it took a while to go back to sleep."

The toilet flushes, then the sound of Emma washing her hands and brushing her teeth masks the sound of Regina's deep breathing. She is back to normal just as Emma reappears in her matching robe.

"Are we watching the sunrise from up here or going down to the patio?"

"Here is fine," Regina answers. "We can just open the window. I really don't feel like going down all of those stairs just to come right back up again."

"Good thinking." Emma nods, then walks toward the window and pulls the curtains completely aside. She unlatches the window lock and swings the panes out. "You want anything to eat or drink?"

"I'm kind of craving a root beer float but it can wait until after."

"A root beer float? " Emma teases. "For breakfast?"

"Your daughter wants what your daughter wants."

"Funny how she's always MY daughter whenever YOUR sweet tooth kicks in." Emma walks back to the bed and helps Regina to her feet. "Are your tits higher?" she asks suddenly.

"Excuse me?"

"Your boobs look higher than they did last night. Did you put on a bra?"

"No."

"Weird." Emma observes her wife's chest from various angles, then shrugs. "Let me get my phone. We'll document the sunrise."

"Absolutely not," Regina protests. "No cameras during the sunrise. This is about reconnecting with and getting closer to nature. Not watching it through your phone."

Emma pouts. "Let me at least take your picture by the window before it starts."

"That's fine."

Emma snaps a picture of Regina as she did the night before, then puts her phone aside. She helps her wife settle into the window seat before sitting down beside her.

The sky is already pale blue with a few clouds and various shades of orange along the horizon. They hold hands as they watch the sun gradually emerge. It's a beautiful and peaceful moment they will both cherish for the rest of their lives.

"So why did you keep waking up?" Emma asks as Regina starts to stand.

Regina groans and stretches her back. "Back spasms. I think I pinched a nerve or pulled a muscle or something. Then I'd have to pee."

Emma's mouth falls open, then she tries to hide a smile. "Back spasms? Every hour you said?"

"Just about. At 2:36, and 3:36, then 4:23. I just stayed up and took a shower after that. I was going to get up at 4:30 anyway."

"Have you had any 'spasms' since then?"

"While you were in the bathroom."

"You mean at 4:52? When you told me to get up?"

"Maybe a minute after that," Regina laughs. "Why?"

"Those are contractions, you goof. You're in labor."

Regina scoffs. "I am not in labor. I'm having back spasms. Contractions are in the uterus."

"Anything about back labor in that book of yours?"

Regina gapes and sits back down.

Emma has an epiphany. "Your tits aren't higher. Snow White Junior dropped!"

"Don't call her that!"

Emma waves a dismissive hand and grabs her phone. She slides back and forth between the two pictures of Regina taken less than five hours apart. "See? She's lower."

Regina snatches the phone and slides from one picture and back to the other several times. Tears spring to her eyes as she looks toward her wife.

"Oh, my god," Emma panics. "Are those happy tears? Relieved tears? Hormonal tears? Scared tears? "

Regina takes a few breaths. "Yeah," she whispers.

Emma takes Regina into her arms, rocking her back and forth. "Everything will be fine. I'll be with you the whole time and talk you through everything. You're a great mom already. And we're a team. I'll help you through the birth part and you'll help me through the taking care of a newborn part. Everything will be just fine."

Regina nods. "What should we do now?"

"We should time your contractions."

"Right. Right...how do we do that?"

"We just write down the time they start and how long they last."

"Yes, of course. Gather intel before we wake Henry and call Marilyn."

"I bet there's an app for that," Emma quips, reaching for her phone.

"No," Regina says, holding the phone to her chest. "No phones, or artificial...mechanical...things."

Emma looks amused. "Should I get a quill and parchment?"

Regina clears her throat and gives the phone back to her wife. "Pen and paper will be fine."

Emma tucks her phone into Regina's robe pocket, then kisses her lips. She walks over to her bedside table and digs out a notebook and pen from the top drawer. "What time did you say the first spasm happened?"

"2:36."

Emma sits beside Regina again and scribbles down the numbers as Regina calls them out.

"Then 3:36. And 4:23. And then 4:53? I guess. I forgot to look at the clock that time."

Emma nods as she writes. "And how long did they last?"

"About 30 seconds or so. Maybe longer."

"So...one hour. Then 47 minutes, then half an hour."

"They're getting closer together. Oh my god. This is really happening."

Emma sets the pen and paper down, then squeezes Regina's hand. "Wanna see if you've dilated?"

"Yes," Regina nods. "We should definitely check that."

"Okay. I'm going to wash my hands and I'll be right back." Emma kisses Regina and hugs her one more time. "I love you."

"I love you, too. "

Emma stands and heads toward the bathroom, then takes a detour to Regina's side of the bed. She picks up something from the nightstand and hands it to Regina, then makes her way out the door.

Regina looks down at the tube of lube in her palm and laughs. She sets it down beside the pen and paper, then looks around the room. She looks at the bed and the rumpled sheets where she and Emma had made love a few hours earlier. She looks over at the empty crib in the corner. She pictures two babies sleeping peacefully inside it and smiles.

Emma returns with her hands in the air like a surgeon again. "Get that out of my pocket," she says, nodding her head.

Regina removes an unopened package of latex gloves and looks up confused.

"Forgot I bought those," Emma explains. "When I first moved in, I bought a bunch of those to wear while I clean...stuff. Then I found out you have a cleaning crew come in once a week and well... they've been in the linen closet ever since. "

"How lovely," Regina says still looking confused.

"I know they aren't the same as doctor gloves, but they're close."

"We don't need gloves, Emma. You're hands are clean. I want the warm touch of my loving wife right now. There will be enough gloved hands at the hospital."

"Okay," Emma says, holding back tears. "Are you ready? "

Regina nods.

"Lube me up."

Regina squeezes a dollop of lubricant onto Emma's fingers.

Emma kneels down between Regina's legs and takes a deep breath. She slides two fingers inside her wife and immediately smiles. "She's definitely lower," she whispers. "No stretching or searching needed."

Regina smiles and lets out a startled breath.

"And...I can get one fingertip inside your cervix...but I don't think two will fit. "

"Oh, my god."

"You're at least one centimeter dilated. On your way to two." Tears finally spill from each of their eyes as they both smile. Emma kisses her wife as she slides her fingers out.

"What do we do now?" Regina asks.

"You can call Marilyn, " Emma says, pulling her phone from Regina's pocket and pressing it into her hands. "She's number three on my contact list. Find out what she thinks we should do. In the mean time we keep writing down the times of your contractions. And... do you still want that root beer float?"

Regina looks up in surprise. "Yes. Yes, I do."

"Alright. You call. I'll go make my babies a root beer float. "

Chapter Text

Emma returns to the bedroom with Regina's root beer float to find her wife back in bed with the now silent phone in her hand.

"What did Doctor Marilyn say?" Emma asks as she sits down and hands over the sweet drink.

Regina puts the phone back on the table and accepts the frosty mug. She takes a big sip through the straw and savors the taste before answering. "She said to keep doing what we're doing. To track the contractions, how far apart they are and how long they last. To rest as much as possible but to also walk around a bit. And to give her a call when the contractions are four minutes apart so she can meet us at the hospital. She also gave me a list of emergency criteria that would warrant giving her a call earlier. She's cleared her schedule for the day."

"Sounds like a plan," Emma answers as she fluffs her pillows and gets comfortable. "This is the part of labor that can last eight to twelve hours, right?"

Regina nods as she takes another drink.

"Did she say anything else?"

"She asked if you were having any contractions."

"No. I mean I'm a little sore from last night. Haven't used those lower back muscles in a few months, but I'm not having sharp pains or anything."

"No spasms for you?" Regina asks while offering a spoonful of root beer coated ice cream to Emma which she greedily accepts.

Emma shakes her head. "Nope."

Regina licks the remaining ice cream from the spoon and sighs. "The day is young. You still have time."

"The day is way young," Emma counters as she scoots further down onto the bed. "The sun is barely up. Do you think we can catch little half hour naps between contractions?"

Regina stirs her drink, takes one more sip and then sets it on the nightstand. She snuggles down closer to Emma and sighs again. "We can try."

Regina stares at the ceiling as Emma's breathing evens out but speaks before the steady deep breaths of sleep can begin. "I have something I need to tell you."

Emma's eyes pop open and she looks over at her wife. "Okay."

"I've been wanting to tell you for a while but I just...didn't know how."

"Just say it. You can tell me anything."

"I lied to you before."

"When?"

"Months ago when we were taking the pregnancy tests. I told you I had my period every twenty eight days since I was twelve years old. That wasn't true."

"What? You started when you were eleven? Or thirteen? That's not a big deal."

"No. I was late once. Years and years ago."

"Oh."

Regina takes a few deep breaths, exhaling slowly before she continues. "It was a few months after the wedding. Mother had prepared me well for my duty and had given me a supply of tea to prevent immediate conception. She said to drink it every day but only for three months. That the legitimacy of a pregnancy too soon after the wedding could be questioned especially if the child came early. But waiting three months could still produce a legitimate heir within the first year and would firmly establish my place as queen and win the hearts of the people."

"Jesus."

"So I stopped drinking the tea after three months just like Mother said even though she was gone because as much as I didn't want it to be mother's training was still my inner voice... and the next month my period was late."

Regina takes a few more deep breaths. "The king had instructed me to read Eva's diaries. I'm not sure why. Maybe as an attempt to mold my behavior after hers."

"What the fuck?"

"It doesn't matter. What matters is that I had read of her troubles conceiving. That it had taken her years to get pregnant and when she finally did, the king refused to lie with her for the duration out of fear it would cause her to lose the baby. It turned my stomach that she missed his touch. But I was looking forward to that nine month break so I told him. Before I could even consult the royal physician to have it confirmed...I told him that I believed I was with child because I had missed my time and I never had before...He was well pleased... He wanted to celebrate."

A lone tear lands on Regina's cheek. Emma quietly wipes it away.

"I questioned if that could cause any harm... He said Eva had been delicate, and that her lone pregnancy was a miracle, and thus needed to be protected. He said I was much stronger, having accomplished within months what had taken her years. He said I was obviously made from sturdier stock... All would be fine. I really was hoping for that break but... mother's training about a queen's duty ran deep... So I consented."

Emma wipes tears from her own eyes and remains silent.

"Afterward... there was blood... so much blood. I immediately started sobbing. He whispered that I must have miscounted my days... I must have miscounted... even though a newlywed queen's cycle is monitored quite closely. The lack of privacy was beyond humiliating. I must have miscounted but he still ordered a guard to fetch the physician. He calmly stated 'the queen has lost the baby' as if it were common knowledge that I was with child and not a secret I had whispered to him barely half an hour earlier. His words confirmed his virility though and brought my own fertility under question."

"Asshole."

"The physician assured me I could conceive again... but to be more careful next time. The maids who bathed me and washed my linens looked at me with pity as they said kind words. And Marilyn, who was the physician's assistant, she was there and she held my hand while I cried. So much consideration shown to a girl who miscounted her days."

"I'm so sorry."

"I was allowed to remain in my chamber for the following week, I was given tonics for the pain, and I heard the whispers among the staff when they thought I was sleeping. I was young. I was strong. I had plenty of time to have more. Made me feel like a broodmare. I swore I never wanted to feel that way again. So Marilyn quietly provided me with the same tea mother had."

"I thought you drank a potion?"

"Oh, I did. Years later. The tea was temporary, like your pills. The potion was permanent. Or so I thought. True love and all that."

Emma brings their joined hands to her lips, kissing Regina's wedding ring.

"Over time, I convinced myself that I actually had miscounted. I talked myself into believing a lot of things. Like that my cycle had simply been disrupted when I stopped drinking the tea. Or that the king was an old man with waning vitality. And maybe Eva had so much trouble because of him not her and that there was no way I could have conceived. Or that it wouldn't have been Daniel's baby anyway so it hardly mattered. I buried that pain, pushed it down so deeply it was as well as forgotten. Until the dining room incident."

"Oh my god. You never said anything. You gave me the thing for my birthday. I would have never, Regina. I swear."

"I know. You did nothing wrong. It never even occurred to me at the time. I enjoyed every minute on that table... right up until Henry walked in. I had no fear until the dream I had that night. I relived that moment the king pulled away...over and over. Sometimes it was him in my chambers... then sometimes it was you in my bedroom... But the blood was always the same."

"That's when you started avoiding penetration."

"Yes. Can you forgive me?"

"Forgive you for what? "

"I lied to you."

"Having a repressed memory is not lying, Regina."

"But I remembered after the dream and I still didn't tell you."

"You're telling me now. There's nothing to forgive. You don't have to tell me things that are difficult to talk about. You can if you want to but not before you're ready. And I know you don't like talking about the king at all. And something like this. .. My god, Regina. You didn't do anything wrong. You don't have to apologize for how you process your trauma."

"I almost told you that one night before the wedding but you were such an angel, so understanding and you didn't push. You just accepted my wishes without explanation. Then I didn't want to put a cloud over the wedding. You were so happy. We were so happy."

"We are happy. "

"Yes, we are. Thank you for being so understanding."

"Of course. I'm sorry you've been carrying this alone and feeling guilty about it when you didn't have to. I love you. Unconditionally. Nothing is going to change that."

"I love you, too."

"Were you okay with what we did last night? It didn't trigger bad memories or anything? "

"Everything was perfect last night. You were so gentle and considerate. You were perfect. You are perfect."

"I am so not perfect."

"Perfect for me then."

"Maybe. Is that why you usually wear the strap? And I only wear it on special occasions? Negative associations with penetration?"

"Oh, no. I told you I had no memory of it. Normally, I enjoy penetration just fine. I'm usually the one strapping because I'm the dominant one in this relationship."

Emma bursts out laughing. "No. We switch. And I'm usually the one on top. You are a power bottom at best."

While Emma continues to laugh smugly, Regina retrieves her root beer float from the table and gathers some liquid up into the straw. She pulls the top of her robe aside and drips the confection onto her nipple.

Emma's laughter stops immediately. "What are you doing?"

Regina calmly returns the straw to the mug, then smiles at Emma's stunned expression. "It's been a while since my last contraction so we're going to do more nipple stimulation."

"Oh. Okay." Emma moves forward to take said nipple into her mouth.

Regina blocks her with a gentle hand. "First say I'm the top," she teases.

Emma huffs, her eyes moving back and forth from Regina's steady gaze to her pretty, pretty breast. "You don't play fair, woman."

"Just say it."

Emma whines and then relents. "You're the top."

Regina moves her hand to the back of Emma's head and guides her forward.

Emma encircles the nipple with her tongue, licking up the sticky sweetness before taking the turgid tip into her mouth completely.

Regina hums with pleasure.

"I can tickle your clit if you want," Emma offers, licking her lips.

"You horn dog," Regina sighs. "I'm in early labor."

Emma shrugs and returns to sucking.

"Maybe," Regina whispers.

Emma unties Regina's robe and pulls it open.

*****************

"I don't understand," Henry says as he climbs into the back seat of Regina's minivan. "Mom is in labor and we're still going to the festival? "

"That's what I said," Emma answers while she climbs into the driver's seat.

"Hush, you two," Regina says as she fastens her seat belt. "We have an obligation as mayor and sheriff to support community events. Besides, Marilyn said I should do a bit of walking to speed labor along. "

Emma scoffs. "To speed up this eight to twelve hour stage that started seven hours ago? And I am pretty sure she meant to walk around the house, not do laps around Storybrooke Heritage Park."

"Just drive, dear. I'll be fine."

"Shouldn't I drive?" Henry asks, as Emma eases into traffic. "What if Emma's water breaks on the way to the park? "

Emma smiles. "If that happens, I'll pull over and you can sit in the puddle and drive the rest of the way."

"Gross."

"Should we continue to the park in that scenerio?" Emma asks Regina. "Or can we go ahead to the hospital at the point?"

"Of course we can go to the hospital if either of our waters break. That is one of the four criteria Marilyn gave me. Contractions are four minutes apart for at least an hour, vaginal bleeding, passing the mucus plug, or amniotic sac rupturing. "

"What's a mucus plug?" Henry asks.

"Cervical snot rocket," Emma quips.

"GROSS! I am never having kids."

"Well," Emma teases. "Never jump in a puddle without your rain boots, and you'll never have to worry about it."

"Or," Henry counters. "Never get drunk and forget condoms exist."

"That's what I just said! Regina? Are we sure he's clever enough to graduate early? That metaphor went right over his head. "

"Ha-ha. I got an almost perfect score on my ACT."

"Almost."

Regina gasps and let's out a panting breath.

"Is that a shut-up-you-two-you're-driving-me-crazy gasp or a contraction gasp?" Emma asks.

"Contraction..."

"Henry, grab that notebook there and write down the time." Emma reaches over with her free hand to give Regina something to squeeze and begins counting the seconds until Regina indicates the contraction is over.

"How long since the last one, Henry? "

"Twenty-one minutes."

Emma and Henry exchange looks through the rear view mirror, then Emma pulls into their reserved parking space beside the festival entrance.

"So, what's the plan?" Emma asks, turning to Regina.

"We stay for the opening ceremony."

"Can we sit through that?"

"Yes. We have reserved seats under the pavilion."

Emma nods in approval. "Do we have to make speeches?"

"No, Kathryn is in charge of speeches for the time being. We just have to smile and wave."

"Good."

"We will have to walk through the booths and activities. But just once."

"Once, Henry. One time. Write that down."

Henry holds back a laugh and writes the word 'ONCE' across the top margin of the contraction timing chart.

Regina rolls her eyes and continues. "Should take no more than an hour or two. Then we can leave."

"Do you think we'll still be here for the boat races?" Henry asks. "Ava and I talked about signing up for that."

"That is entirely up to your little sister," Emma says, pointing toward Regina.

"There's always next year if you miss it," Regina replies.

"That's a whole year though."

"Those are the breaks, kid. I had to skip sheep shearing at Gramp's this year."

Regina reaches over and longingly caresses Emma's strong bicep. "Yes. That was quite the sacrifice."

"Oh my god!" Henry protests. "You guys are going to be pregnant again before these two are even born!"

Emma and Regina gaze at each other then laugh.

"That's not even possible, kid."

"Says my mom who knocked up and is knocked up by my other mom."

"Smart ass."

"Better than a dumbass."

Emma opens her mouth to retaliate when Regina shuts down the teasing. "He does have a point though. Will we need birth control in the future?"

"I'm out of here," Henry says as he climbs out of the car.

"You stay within visual range!" Emma yells at his retreating back.

Henry stops and turns around. He climbs back into the car and kisses first Regina and then Emma on the cheek. "Don't have babies without me," he whispers, then exits the car again.

"Keep your phone on full volume!" Emma yells once more.

Henry waves in acknowledgement as he meets Ava and they walk toward the pavilion.

Emma turns back toward Regina. "Are you serious about the birth control thing or was that just to freak out Henry?"

"I'm serious. Freaking out our son was just a bonus."

Emma barks out a short laugh then thinks. "Do we plan on using that dick potion again? Because that's the only time we'd need birth control."

"Perhaps. Biologically. Scientifically. But what about magically? "

"What? Magic beats condoms? Like rock beats scissors? So we won't do the potion again unless we want another kid."

"But what if it wasn't the potion that gave us the babies? What if it was our combined magic? Forget about sperm and eggs for a moment and think about the very essence of our magic comingling, coalescing , and creating life?"

"Okay. Now you're freaking me out and making me afraid to touch you again."

"It's something we should consider. Magic is emotion. True love is the most powerful magic of all. What if..."

"Regina. Baby. Love of my life. We are going to have plenty of time to contemplate, research, and figure this out during the six weeks after the babies are born and before we can have sex again. Right now we are going to be late for this horse and pony show of we don't get out of the car and go over there. "

Regina nods. "You're right. We can discuss this later."

"Cool. I also need a little time to...deal..."

"It is a bit much."

Emma climbs out of the car and walks around to open Regina's door and help her out of her seat. As they walk hand in hand toward the festivities, Regina whispers, "Please don't tell Snow that I'm having contractions just yet. She'll make a huge fuss and I want to keep this as private as possible for as long as possible."

"What if your water breaks? "

"That's not going to happen."

"It could."

"It won't."

Emma laughs as Regina caresses her rounded belly.

"She wouldn't dare."

Chapter Text

Emma and Regina sit together during the festival's opening ceremony. They wave to the townspeople when acting-mayor Kathryn acknowledges them in her introductory speech for their help organizing the day's events. She wishes them well during their maternity leave and promises to take care of the town for them.

Regina quietly answers Emma's questions during the variety of entertainment about why the celebration has a maypole when it is June, why it's called midsummer when it's the first day of the season, and why this particular full moon is called a strawberry moon.

Regina's explanations temporarily cease whenever she has a contraction. She calmly squeezes Emma's hand and discreetly breathes through the pain. Emma breathes through the contractions with her, then records the time and duration. Regina continues speaking afterward without missing a beat leaving Emma in awe of her stamina.

Regina has a few contractions during the maypole dance, another mid-way through Snow's fourth grade music class playing 'Strawberry Fields Forever' on their recorders, and more while David and August re-enact the battle of the Holly King and the Oak King.

Emma whispers that the contractions are consistently ten minutes apart and implores Regina to consider going to the hospital. Regina insists she has plenty of time. Emma sighs.

As the grand opening performances finally come to a close after nearly two hours, Emma says she needs to pee. Of course Regina needs to go as well, so the couple dodge through the dispersing crowd before a line can form in front of the bathrooms.

There is only one unoccupied stall when they reach the restroom and since Emma is dancing with her need to urinate, Regina insists that Emma should go first. She rushes inside to do her business, then holds the stall door open for Regina to go next.

Emma thoroughly washes her hands and dries them with a paper towel before greeting Regina as she tries to exit the stall with a long and deep kiss. She gently backs Regina into the cubicle once more, then shuts and locks the door.

"What are you doing?" Regina asks between kisses.

"You know what I'm doing," Emma answers. "Drop your panties."

"What? Here? Have you lost your mind?"

Emma shakes her head. "We're doing this," she insists. She leans closer and whispers into Regina's ear. "And if you are four centimeters, which I highly suspect you are, we're going to the hospital."

Emma leans back and smiles while Regina stares daggers. Emma kisses Regina on the cheek, then just behind the ear. "Please, baby? I love you and this will make me feel better."

Regina rolls her eyes with a heavy sigh. "Fine," she relents. "But for the record, I do not think it is time yet. So we're only doing this because I love you so much."

"Duly noted," Emma says. "Now if you'll just drop your drawers, my queen."

Regina holds onto Emma's arm for balance as she steps out of her underwear and shoves them into her purse.

"Now, spread your legs."

"I'm quite familiar with how it's done, Emma. We did it this morning."

"Yeah, but we weren't standing up. You can sit down if you want."

Regina looks behind her toward the toilet which is still quite sparkly from it's most recent cleaning. Nevertheless, she shakes her head, turns back toward Emma and widens her stance.

Emma chuckles then reaches under Regina's sundress. "Do you have any lube in your purse?"

"No. But with all this kissing, your take charge attitude, and the sweet nothings you've been whispering into my ear I don't think you'll need it."

Emma snorts. "That's my kinky girl." She returns to kissing the sensitive spot just behind Regina's ear, then easily slides one finger inside. She pulls out then inserts two, then three. She takes a deep breath as she slips a fourth finger inside.

"Oh my god, Regina."

"Four?"

Emma nods. "Yes," she whispers. "With wiggle room. You're four centimeters. Maybe four and a half or five. And we are going to the hospital. Now."

Regina's mouth hangs open in shock. "But my contractions aren't four minutes apart. I don't understand."

Emma smiles and kisses Regina's lips and cheek and neck. "I got you pregnant and you got me pregnant. We should really be used to things not going by the book."

Regina laughs and kisses Emma back, then leans her forehead against Emma's. "This is really, really happening."

Emma just nods and smiles as Regina takes a deep calming breath and slowly exhales.

"You can stop fingering me now," Regina teases.

"Oh, shit," Emma exclaims, removing the digits that have been absently caressing Regina's clit. "Sorry. Muscle memory, I guess." She slips the fingers into her mouth and hums. "Sure you don't want me to finish you off? Six weeks is a long time."

Regina gives her a flat look. "Tempting but no."

Emma shrugs and continues to lick the rest of her fingers. "Just being a gentleman. I hate to leave a lady hanging."

Regina playfully slaps Emma's arm. "Stop it. I feel like if I either orgasm or laugh really hard my water will break."

Emma offers Regina her arm as she unlocks the door. They leave the stall as regally as possible,
keep their, heads held high as they wash their hands then make their way toward the exit. Emma winks at the shocked women waiting in line.

***************

Regina and Emma slowly make their way hand in hand through the crowd toward the parking lot. Emma texts Henry to meet them at the car while Regina calls Dr. Marilyn to meet them at the hospital.

Henry joins them quickly and Regina has another contraction while climbing into the passenger seat so she takes a break until it passes. Several people witness this and word quickly spreads through the solstice/full moon festival that the Swan-Mills family is on their way to add two more members.

Traffic is unusually slow at first, frustrating Emma as she tries to navigate through the busy streets. The normally five minute drive from the park to the hospital takes fifteen minutes and Regina has another contraction in the car.

Henry dutifully records the times and both he and Emma breathe through the pains with Regina, offering her comfort and support. They finally reach the hospital and Henry runs inside to commandeer a wheelchair while Emma helps Regina out of the car.

Once Regina is seated, Henry insists on pushing her through the doors while Emma holds her hand and yells for help.

A nurse directs them to the registration desk and hands Emma a clipboard with paperwork to fill out. Regina tells the nurse she pre-registered herself and Emma during their second trimester.

"Oh," the nurse sneers. "Mrs. and Mrs. Swan-Mills, of course. Follow me to your private room while we wait for your doctor."

Regina and Henry exchange confused looks until Regina tugs on Emma's hand and nods her head for them to follow the nurse.

They enter the formerly four-bed ward which has been renovated into a two-bed, two-bassinet suite. The nurse absently pulls a backless gown from a drawer and lays it on one of the beds.

"You can change into that," she says tersley before turning toward the newly purchased laptop and accessing Regina's file. "Has your water broken?" she asks without looking up.

"No," Regina replies while Emma squats down to remove her shoes for her. "It has not."

"And how far apart are your contractions?"

"Ten minutes," Henry says, holding up the notebook. "We've been keeping track. The last one was almost eight minutes ago."

The nurse looks up at this information. "Ten minutes? Any vaginal bleeding?"

"No." Regina repeats.

"Why are you here so early then? You have plenty of time."

Emma clears her throat. "She is at least four centimeters dilated. It's part of her birth plan and our doctor recommended that she come here when she's four centimeters."

"The doctor examined her today?"

"No," Regina answers. "I last saw the doctor on Friday, when she verified the baby was in the correct position, that she'd dropped, and it was safe for labor to start at any time."

The nurse looks confused. "Without a doctor's examination, how do you know you're four centimeters?"

"Because I examined her," Emma says, crossing her arms and staring hard at the nurse.

"Should I call grandma and grandpa?" Henry asks as he grimaces. "And Aunt Zelena? Make sure they're on their...way...? Yeah. I'm just gonna go out in the hall...make some phone calls..." He kisses his mothers goodbye and makes a quick exit.

"You examined her?" The nurse continues in disbelief.

Emma looks at Regina. "I said that out loud, right?"

Regina nods her head and begins exhaling as another contraction starts. Emma holds her hand and breathes with her until the pain stops. They both sigh with relief when the contraction ends.

They look over at the nurse who is still staring at them. "You examined her?"

"Is your name Echo?" Emma replies. "Yes, I examined her. Is that so unusual?"

"It is certainly outside the standard practices of most...spouses."

"Well, most spouses sound like assholes. My wife asked me to check when the contractions first started and I did it again several hours later. There was a noticeable difference. One finger to four. So here we are."

The nurse slowly turns back to the laptop and types in the information.

Emma and Regina exchange looks. Regina rolls her eyes then points to the zipper at her back. Emma takes a deep breath then proceeds to help Regina out of her dress and into the hospital gown.

The nurse rolls a utility cart toward the bed and silently takes Regina's vitals, then enters the results in her chart.

Emma watches as the excited sparkle in Regina's eyes begins to dim.

"Is it the gay thing?" Emma asks the nurse.

"Excuse me?" the nurse replies.

"No. I don't think I will."

"Emma, it's fine."

"It is not fine. It's far from fine. This is supposed to be your day, part of your happy ending and she's fucking it up."

The nurse scoffs.

"I don't really care about your personal beliefs," Emma tells the nurse. "And we don't expect you to be Little Mary Sunshine, but this is your job and you do need to have some manners."

The nurse tilts her head toward Regina. "She probably cursed Little Mary Sunshine to be a lumberjack or a longshoreman."

"So it's an evil queen thing?" Emma asks. "Are you mad that Regina cursed you to a land with indoor plumbing and to a well paying job with insurance and a 401K?"

The nurse's face turns red as she blurts out, "I'm mad because she made my mom a servant! Back home she had power and prestige. Here she's nothing but a lowly butcher!"

"Butcher? You're Bo Peep's kid?" Emma asks.

"Yes."

"I guess back home you didn't have to do much of anything, huh? Because of all the power and prestige your mom had?"

"That's not the point."

"I saw your mom at the Chop Shop last week. She was friendlier than you. But she's free to make a career change if she hates her job so much. The curse has been broken for a long time."

The nurse clears her throat and looks down. "She actually likes what she does. Says it's a positive outlet for her aggression. That bug shrink is filling her head with drivel."

"Oh lady, you have issues. And maybe you should make an appointment with Archie yourself and work some of them out. But right now you need to walk out that door and not come back in while we're here."

"What?"

"You're no longer our nurse. Go out to the main desk, stay there, and send us someone else."

The nurse stalks out of the room in a huff. Regina pulls Emma toward her by the hand and kisses her. Hard.

"What's this all about?" Emma asks between kisses.

"I love it when you get all...authoritative."

Emma laughs and kisses her back. "I know you're perfectly capable of defending yourself. She just pissed me off. This is your day. All about you. Not Bo Peep the butcher's brat."

"My hero," Regina whispers. She grabs the front of Emma's shirt and pulls her in closer for more kisses.

Regina gasps as another contraction hits. Emma helps her breathe through the pain once more. As the spasms relax, she gives Regina another gentle lingering kiss.

"Emma!"

Emma and Regina turn toward the door to see Snow staring in shock. Henry comes in and bumps into Snow's back, quickly followed by David, who bumps into Henry. David is also still in his Holly King costume.

"Hey, Mom. Dad," Emma says laughing while Regina wipes lipstick from her lips. "Have you guys seen the doctor? We're still waiting for her to show up."

"So you decided to squeeze in a quickie?" Snow accuses.

"What the hell?"

"I know pregnancy hormones can go into overdrive," Snow says. "And that seeing your spouse carrying your child can be quite...stimulating."

"Oh, my god..."

"But, Emma. Have some self control. Your wife is in labor."

"We were just kissing, Mom. I swear."

"And were you just kissing in the bathroom at the festival?"

Emma looks confused. Regina smiles like this is the funniest thing she's ever heard.

"Everyone is talking about it," Snow continues. "How the two of you had sex--"

"WHAT?!"

"In the bathroom of all places and that's what caused Regina to go into labor!"

"She's due today!"

"And that Regina didn't want to but you pressured her? Emma!"

Regina bites her lip and squeaks while Emma remains speechless.

"She's clearly traumatized, Emma. Think about her. And think of Henry."

"I've decided I'm used to it," Henry says, throwing his hands on the air. "My parents have sex everywhere."

"We did not have sex," Emma protests.

"They said you put your..." Snow gestures with her fingers. "Into Regina's..." Snow motions toward Regina's groin area. "And I read a book when you two got together. I know that's one way lesbians... "

"Oh, my god. Stop!" Emma demands.

Regina buries her face in her hands and begins shaking.

"We did not have sex in the bathroom at the festival," Emma hisses.

"Emma," Snow grumbles. "People heard...noises."

Regina lifts her face to reveal that she is laughing hysterically. She wipes away tears and checks her fingers for mascara.

Emma clears her throat. "Not that it's anyone's business what my wife and I do in the privacy of our own... stall...but Regina has been in labor since about 2 o'clock this morning."

Henry consults the contraction record. "Two thirty-six a.m."

"Thank you, Henry," Regina whispers, still catching her breath.

"What?" David says. "She's been having contractions all day?"

Regina nods.

"Yes," Emma says. "And her contractions were getting closer and closer together...so..."

"You mean?" Snow's eyes triangulate from Emma's face to her hand and to Regina's lap.

"Yeah. I wanted her to come to the hospital. She didn't think it was time yet. And... there's only one way to check her progress. Ergo de facto...fides spes et amor...here we are."

Snow has the decency to look chastised. David finds the ceiling extremely interesting and Henry is staring at his phone. Regina looks proud and ready to pounce on Emma.

Emma smiles at her wife. "Regina would never...in a public bathroom. And I would never force her. To do anything."

Regina reaches for Emma's hand and kisses her knuckles. "My hero," she whispers. "My white knight in leather armor." She pats the bed beside her, inviting Emma to sit down.

"I'm a knight now, huh? Officially?" Emma asks, scooting closer.

"You've offically been a knight since you went on a quest to save magic and slayed a dragon with your father's sword."

"I'm not sure that counts since said dragon is currently planning tonight's bonfire at the festival we just left."

"Well, you've been my knight since you promised our son you would protect me and when you promised me you'd fight for my happy ending. And definitely since you swore fealty."

"True. But you don't have to be a knight to swear fealty. Brienne of Tarth swore fealty to Catelyn Stark and again to Sansa and she keeps saying she's not a knight."

Regina takes a deep breath. "You've got to stop mixing up fiction with facts."

"She said to the daughter of Snow White and Prince Charming."

"Honestly. If you would read the books I give you--"

"The book you gave me said fealty is sworn from a vassal to his lord. Now I'm no vassal and you're no lord."

"A knight is a vassal, and queens outrank lords. And I've called you my knight before."

"Yeah, but I thought that was...a term of endearment."

"Oh my god. Emma?"

"I didn't know I was a knight, okay? So I didn't realize I swore fealty until you told me later. And I was cool with that."

"Oh you were cool with that? One of the happiest moments of my life and you were cool with that?"

"This is awkward," Henry whispers to his grandparents. The couple nods their heads in agreement, unable to turn away.

Emma makes a confused face then continues. "And I sure didn't realize it was a marriage proposal until you told my mother we were engaged. And that I had asked you."

Three audible gasps echo from across the room.

"You didn't realize?" Regina repeats. "What else could you have possibly meant by you wanted to divorce the pirate and spend the rest of your life with me? How is that not also a pledge of betrothal?"

"Because I didn't say the words 'Will You Marry Me'?"

Large brown eyes stare back at Emma in shock.

Emma's mouth hangs open for a moment. "Okay, maybe I didn't read the whole book."

"Oh, my god," Henry, Snow, and David whisper.

Emma and Regina glance over to their forgotten audience. Regina is fighting back tears and Emma looks lost.

The door opens and Dr. Marilyn finally walks in. "Sorry, I'm late." She says as she walks over to the sink and washes her hands. "There was a huge traffic jam outside of the festival. I didn't think I would ever get out of the parking lot. I finally decided to walk when August gave me a ride on his motorcycle. Far more maneuverable in heavy traffic. We just circumvented the whole thing on some side roads."

She turns back to her patient and noticed something is amiss. "Regina? Why are you unattended? And why hasn't the fetal monitor been activated?"

"We had a bit of an incident with the nurse," Emma explains.

"Well, I will definitely deal with that after I finish the examination. If your family could step outside, we can see just how far along you've progressed."

Emma calls Henry over and she hands him the car keys, instructing him to put the car in the parking garage and to bring in the suitcase from the backseat.

"Why don't you go with him?" Regina asks her.

"I'm not leaving you," Emma says.

"Are you sure you realize what you're saying?"

Emma sighs heavily and tries to give Regina puppy eyes. Regina avoids her gaze.

"Fix this," Henry tells Emma as he follows his grandparents out the door.

Emma nods and looks back at Regina who continues to look elsewhere.

"Okay," Marilyn says. "Put your feet flat on the bed and bend your knees and we'll get to it. "

"Wait," Regina says as she reached for Emma's hand. "Contraction."

Emma holds Regina's hand and breathes along with her while Marilyn times the duration. Regina drops Emma's hand after it passes under the pretext of getting into position for the doctor's examination.

Marilyn puts on a glove and stands beside the bed. "Okay, Regina. I'm going to slide the back of my hand up your thigh so as not to startle you when I touch your vulva. Then I'll examine you internally just like I did on Friday. Are you ready?"

"Yes, go ahead."

"Okay. Thigh...thigh...thigh...vulva... now take a deep breath then relax... I'm going to insert two fingers...you said on the phone you were four centimeters and your contractions were ten minutes apart? How far apart are your contractions now?"

Regina looks at Emma.

"The last one was about five minutes ago," Emma says.

"And how did you determine four centimeters?"

Emma clears her throat. "I...did what you're doing and she measured four fingers across."

"Hmm. Regina, have you changed your mind about drugs? Now would be a good time to get an epidural if you want one."

"Why?" Regina asks. "How many centimeters? How much time?"

"You are fully effaced and seven centimeters dilated."

"Seven?" Regina squeaks.

"That fast?" Emma asks.

"Yes," Marilyn explains while removing her glove and tossing it into the trash. "You could have been five or six when Emma examined you. It's not an exact way to determine dilation if you don't do it everyday. More of a guideline. There is also no sign of your mucus plug but you could have lost it gradually over the weekend without noticing. Like if you tried what you asked about on Friday...having penetrative intercourse to induce labor...?"

Emma and Regina exchange glances then quickly look away.

Marilyn smiles. "That's probably when. Trying to estimate how much longer until you deliver is difficult. Could be thirty minutes or could be two hours. I'm going to attach the fetal monitor now, then I'm going to go yell at whoever is responsible for not doing that already, and for leaving you alone without a physical exam. This is unacceptable."

Marilyn walks to the sink, washes her hands again, and then returns with the wireless patches. "These are cordless," she says while properly placing and attaching the sticky patches to Regina's abdomen. "Sends the readings through bluetooth to the monitor. This one tracks the baby's heart rate, this one is momma's heart rate, and this one is for contractions."

"Everything is so different from when Henry was born," Emma says. "I'm still freaking out over the seven centimeters."

"You're freaking out?" Regina snorts.

Marilyn nods as she attaches the battery powered sensor. "Since it's cordless, you can walk around if you feel up to it. Go to the bathroom. It's also waterproof if you want to take a quick shower."

"I'm kind of afraid to go to the bathroom," Regina confesses. "I'm worried the baby will fall into the toilet."

"That's a common concern but highly unlikely. This is your first full term pregnancy and you still have a way to go before the baby's head and shoulders can fit through."

"Alright."

"Emma? How about you? Any contractions? Any other signs of labor?"

Emma shakes her head negatively. "Nope. I'm good. It's all Regina right now."

"She had some lower back pain this morning," Regina says.

"It's nothing," Emma stammers. "Just a little over exerted muscle strain. Nothing like what Regina is going through. And I was screaming my head off with Henry, the pain was so bad. This...pales in comparison. There is no comparison. It's nothing."

"O-kay," Marilyn answers. "I'm going to go yell at some people and I'll be back in about fifteen minutes. Regina, I will examine you again. Probably just a visual exam until your contractions are one to two minutes apart. Let me know about that epidural."

"I don't want any drugs."

"Alright. I also want to examine Emma soon. And you two really need to work out whatever it is you're fighting about. You need each other more today than you probably ever have or ever will."

Emma and Regina remain quiet as they watch Marilyn walk out the door, then silently observe the baby's heart rate on the monitor.

Regina reaches for Emma's hand as another contraction begins. Emma helps her breathe through the pain and is saddened when Regina drops her hand as the contraction subsides.

Emma clears her throat. "Regina. I just want to say I'm sorry."

"Sorry that our marriage is a lie or sorry that you told me?"

"Our marriage is not a lie!"

"You didn't realize you proposed, yet here we are married. How is that not a lie?"

"It's true I don't understand all of the protocols or rules of royalty or nobility or whatever we are."

Regina closes her eyes, shaking her head in disbelief.

"I do read most of the books you give me, okay? I never had knighthood training. I was never a page or a squire. I never had a knighting ceremony. So I didn't know."

"Consider the night I gave you the sheriff's badge your knighting ceremony."

"That's not the same thing. And I didn't even know all of this was real back then."

"You became a knight when you defeated the dragon."

"Does that really make me a knight or just a butch princess with her father's sword?"

"Then you conferred direct knighthood when you promised Henry you would protect me and then you did just that. Repeatedly."

"But I didn't know..." Emma whines.

Regina sighs and deflects. "Well, then you definitely conferred direct knighthood after you returned from the enchanted forest and earned your queen's favor."

Emma smiles. "That night in the shower?"

"That was your knighting ceremony."

"I was on my knees."

Regina nods. "You had fought valiantly in battle and defeated my enemy. Then you unselfishly helped me when I was vulnerable and in need."

"It wasn't completely unselfish," Emma admits. "I mean have you seen you?"

Regina smiles. "And I believe that was the first time I called you my knight."

"I thought that was... role play or... orgasmic gibberish. Oh my god, I'm an idiot."

Regina takes a deep breath and slowly released it. "So we've established that you didn't know you're a knight and you didn't realize you proposed. So now what? You want an annulment? A divorce?"

"God, no! Being your wife is a dream come true!"

"I don't understand."

"Ok. Let's go back to that day when you told Snow that we were getting married and that I was the one who proposed to you. My first thought was--Holy shit! I got up the nerve up to ask? And then my next thought was...I can't wait until that memory comes back."

"You thought the forgetting potion erased the memory?"

"Yes! I thought it would return eventually. And you were so happy, I didn't want to upset you if I didn't have to. Then we got busy with wedding plans and doctor's appointments, that whole are the babies in danger thing, Henry's teenage angst, plus our jobs. It just kind of faded away because it didn't matter. You were my wife and that's all I cared about. How it happened wasn't important."

"But I feel like a fool."

"Why?"

"Because I jumped onto the thought, the idea, the belief that you had proposed."

"I'm the only fool here, Regina. And I promise you, if I had any idea that you were open to being my wife, I would have proposed."

"Why wouldn't I be open to it?"

"I don't know. Your past? My past? Our past? That's the thing. In all the time we've known each other, we never discussed marriage. Ever. And look how long it took for us to even admit we were friends."

"That's true. So what were you asking that day?"

"That I wanted to be with you and would have been happy with whatever you were willing to give. Living together or dating. It didn't matter. And I also wanted you to know I was serious about leaving Hook. I was hoping you and I would be together but I was going to get rid of him no matter what happened between us."

Regina reaches for Emma's hand once more. Emma moves to kiss her wife's knuckles when Regina starts squeezing as the pain returns. They breathe together until the spasms pass. Regina tugs Emma onto the bed to sit beside her. Emma pulls Regina into her embrace, cradling her head against her chest.

Emma kisses the top of Regina's head and whispers, "I'm sorry I didn't tell you that I thought I didn't remember and that I didn't know and I'm sorry for blurting all of that out in front of everybody, too. I'm not sorry we got married. I think about our wedding and how perfect it was all the time. I love falling asleep in your arms and waking up to your beautiful smile. I love the life we have with Henry and the life we're going to have with our little warrior princesses. I wouldn't change a thing. Except the part from five minutes ago. I'd change the part that made you cry."

"Really? You really love our life?"

"Yes, really. And I truly believe that we would have gotten married eventually because you were open to it and I would have figured that out over time. I just love that we didn't waste any more time than we already did."

"Really, really?"

Emma nods her head. "Really, really. And the one thing I did remember from when we drank that potion was the promises we made to each other, to have faith and hope that we would find our way together again. That got me through a lot of confused, fuzzy moments."

"Faith and hope," Regina whispers.

"Faith and hope," Emma repeats. "Best hope speech ever."

Marilyn pokes her head through the door, sees the couple cuddling and smiles. "Everything better in here?"

Emma and Regina look up and nod.

"Are you up for some visitors? There's only half the town out here."

"Seriously?" Emma asks.

"Close enough. Had to ask them not to block the corridor."

"Oh my god," Regina whispers.

"How about just family and I'll send everyone else to the waiting room?" Marilyn asks.

"That sounds alright," Regina answers.

Marilyn turns around to face the occupants of the hallway. "Family only! And you have two minutes! Everyone else, down the hall. You know where to go!"

Henry, Snow, David, and Zelena file into the room as various people relay good luck and well wishes through the open doorway before relocating to the waiting room.

"How is my baby sis?" Zelena fawns over Regina.

"Moms, I need to talk to you," Henry demands urgently.

"Legendary!" Leroy's yells, his voice echoing down the hall. "You are a legend, Emma Swan!"

Emma looks at Snow in confusion.

"Bathroom," her mother replies, shaking her head.

"We tried to explain..." David says.

"I am so gonna get him back," Emma swears. "Him and his big mouth. And after we were so discreet about the Nova Disturbance, too."

"What's the Nova Disturbance?" Zelena asks.

"Exactly," Emma replies.

"I want to be in here when the babies are born!" Henry yells.

Everyone turns to the boy in stunned silence.

"You wanna what?" Emma asks.

"Okay," Henry explains. "I've been watching childbirth videos and there are brothers and sisters in some of them. Little kids. Kids younger than me watching their little siblings come into the world. And I think it would be a great way for me to bond with my sisters. You know? If I'm here for their first breaths and their first cries. I mean I'll totally respect your wishes, I just think it would bring us all closer together. As a family."

"Oh, he's good," Zelena whispers.

"And," Henry continues, "Don't royal births require witnesses? I mean besides doctors and nurses. Like royal witnesses? And I'm a prince, right?"

Emma looks at Regina who appears to be considering Henry's request. "Um," Emma say. "I haven't read that book yet, but if that's the case then I vote for mom and Zelena."

"I would be honored," Snow gushes.

"I don't want to see that," Zelena says. "I'll be having tea in the conservatory like a proper expectant aunty."

"That's gender discrimination, Mom." Henry argues. "If I was a daughter instead of a son, would you be saying the same thing?"

"Shit," Emma says. "The kid has a point."

"Henry?" Regina asks. "Why didn't you bring this up sooner? You could have gone to childbirth classes with us. We could have prepared you better than just tiny videos on your phone."

Henry shrugs. "I've read all the same childbirth books that you have. I've watched a few videos at home on my laptop, too. So I know it's going to be bloody and gross. And I know you guys will be in pain. Maybe part of me doesn't want to see that. Or to see the parts of you I've never seen before. But that's all immature and childish. Our family is growing. And I want to be here to see it grow."

"Oh, he's really good," Zelena repeats.

"And," Henry adds, "If you don't want me to look directly into the sun so to speak, which I completely understand and respect, I can stay bedside. Hold your hand during contractions, maybe hold your knee up while you push. From that line of vision all I would see is round belly and goopy baby."

"That gets a definite maybe from me," Emma says. "But right now is up to your mother."

Regina reaches for Henry's hand then gently squeezes it as a contraction overcomes her. He coaches her through the breathing techniques as he had seen Emma do in the car. He smiles as his mother's grip relaxes but she doesn't let go.

"Is that a yes?" Henry asks.

Regina opens her mouth to speak but is interrupted.

"Why don't we give your moms a moment to talk it over?" Marilyn says. "If everyone can step outside, I need to examine Regina again."

Snow, David and Zelena each kiss Regina on the cheek then shuffle out the door while Marilyn reads the fetal monitor printout. Henry lingers as long as possible giving both of his mothers puppy dog eyes and making a begging gesture with his hands.

Regina points to the door as she laughs, banishing him temporarily to the hallway.

After everyone is gone, Emma helps Regina maneuver into position for the exam.

"What do you think about Henry staying?" Emma asks.

Regina sighs. "His request was unexpected but I'm not completely opposed. It's just a lot to handle for a young boy. Some grown men faint in the delivery room."

"That's true," Marilyn adds as she walks over stretching her fingers inside the glove. "Can't tell you who, put it has happened here more than once."

"I didn't even think of that," Emma says. "I was more worried about him seeing -- what did he call it? Staring directly into the sun? But I'm fine with him standing beside me and not in front of me. And I would say the same thing if he was my daughter. I have no desire to see my mom's hoohaw. I don't want my child seeing mine."

"Well," Marilyn says. "According to hospital policy, beside you is the only place he could stand. Only medically necessary personnel are allowed waist down."

"Well then, that's sorted?" Emma asks and Regina nods.

"You also invited your mother," Regina adds. "How many people are allowed to witness a birth, Marilyn? "

"We usually only allow one but make exceptions sometimes. It's not a hard rule. No more than two bedside though. There just isn't enough space."

Emma and Regina nods just as Regina grips Emma's hand.

"Already?" Emma asks.

Regina starts panting and Emma joins her, coaching her through the contraction. "There is no way that was five minutes," Regina says, once the pain ceases.

Marilyn looks over at the monitor. "Closer to two minutes," she says. "I'm going to go ahead with an internal exam if that's alright with you."

"Alright," Regina says while casting excited eyes on Emma's direction.

Emma is speechless.

"Okay...," Marilyn says. "Thigh, thigh, thigh, vulva...deep breath...relax...two fingers.... " She abruptly withdraws her fingers and removes her glove. "You are almost nine centimeters," she says.

"What?!" Emma and Regina ask simultaneously .

"I'm going to get a team together and prep the room for delivery," Marilyn says, walking toward the door. "By the time everything is ready you should be ten centimeters and it will be time to push."

"Push?" Emma says. "But her water still hasn't broken yet."

"That happens sometimes, " Marilyn answers. "I'll send Henry back in and a nurse will bring you both some scrubs to put on over your clothes. Wash your hands thoroughly," she adds with a wink. "Just in case you forget."

"Oh, my god," Regina whispers, as the door slowly closely behind the doctor.

"OH. MY. GOD." Emma stresses. "This is happening like right now. Right now, this is happening. Holy shit."

"I know," Regina says. She doesn't even try to hide her smile.

"You are amazing, " Emma says, kissing her wife. "This is...wow. Just wow."

The pair cuddle and kiss and hug.

"This has been the whackest day," Emma says. "Started out amazing. Saw a beautiful sunrise with my beautiful wife. Figured out you were in early labor. Saw some interesting entertainment at the festival. Had fun convincing you to come to the hospital. Then traffic was a bitch and that nurse was a bitch for no good reason. Then we got accused of fingerbanging in the bathroom. Then I made you cry and I wanted to cry. Then we find out you're in active labor and that Henry wants to see his sisters being born. And the whole time, you've been shifting your pelvic bones to accommodate a Charming baby head the size of a grapefruit.

Regina laughs and gently nudges Emma off the bed.

Henry rushes through the door with a giant grin. "Is it really almost time? And I can stay?"

"Guess so, kiddo," Emma says.

"Awesome."

"We gotta wash up as soon as the nurse brings us some scrubs to change into."

Regina gasps and both Emma and Henry rush to her sides, holding her hands as another contraction seizes her. She takes deep breaths, exhaling them slowly as the pain goes away.

"Okay," she says when it's over. "I'm good. You two hurry and get washed up.

A team of nurses enter the room and begin opening cabinets and drawers revealing various medical equipment necessary for a successful delivery. One nurse hands Emma and Henry their scrubs and they make their way toward the sink.

"Oh, shit," Emma says as she leans one hand against the wall and cradles her abdomen with the other.

"Mom?" Henry asks. "Did you...? Did you just pee your pants?"

All eyes toward Emma as she stands gasping in disbelief.

"You're fucking kidding me," Regina says from across the room, just as she begins laughing hysterically.

Chapter Text

"Oh!" Henry says when he realizes what is happening. "Oh, wow!"

Emma is out of breath when she looks up at him and then over toward Regina. "This is not happening," she grumbles.

One nurse runs out of the room, presumably to update Marilyn on Emma's condition. Another nurse runs to Emma's side to offer assistance. The remaining nurses resume adjusting Regina's birthing bed and preparing one of the bassinets.

Regina stops laughing when she sees how worried Emma is. "Oh, honey," she soothes. "Everything will be just fine."

"But this is supposed to be your day," Emma whines.

Regina chuckles. "And I want both babies to be born today, so it's still my day."

"But how can I help you from the other bed?"

"I'm sure you'll have plenty of time before your next contraction. You can still help me. I just hope I'm in good enough shape to help you when it's your turn."

"We really didn't think this part through," Emma sighs.

"Speak for yourself. I've thought of dozens of labor situations with hundreds of variants. This is number twenty-seven. Now get cleaned up and put on your scrubs. Once Marilyn examines you, we'll have a better idea of what happens next."

"Alright," Emma huffs. "Henry, go to your mother and hold her hand. She should be having another contraction in about fifteen seconds. I'm just going to hose off from the waist down and I'll be right back. Do not have a baby while I'm gone, Regina! I mean it!"

"I still have at least another centimeter to go. We'll wait for you. Now go!"

The nurse helps Emma into the bathroom and Henry grabs Regina's hand just as her next contraction starts. By the time Emma returns in her scrub pants, Regina's contraction has passed and she is explaining the fetal monitor readings to Henry.

Marilyn, now wearing her own set of scrubs, enters the room again just as Emma reaches Regina's side and takes her other hand once more.

"I hear Emma's water has broken," Marilyn says while walking toward the sink.

"Yeah," Emma answers. "It was kind of embarrassing."

"No such thing as embarrassing in labor and delivery," Marilyn quips. "Whatever happens in L&D, stays in L&D."

"Good to know," Emma sighs.

Marilyn pulls on a pair of gloves and smiles. "Alright, Emma. Take off your pants and get into bed."

Emma scoffs. "Not even gonna buy me dinner first?"

"I didn't have to," Regina teases.

"Too much information," Henry says.

Regina squeezes Henry's hand. "Sorry, honey. Why don't you go get changed in the bathroom now? Someone will knock on the door when Emma's exam is finished."

"Okay," Henry says. "Don't have any babies while I'm gone."

"Step around the puddle," Emma yells at him.

Emma gets into her bed and waits until the bathroom door closes behind Henry before she pulls her pants off.

Marilyn steps beside the bed and instructs Emma to get into position and follows the same process as she has with Regina. She looks up suddenly at Emma as she completes her exam.
"Tell me about the overexertion you experienced this morning," she says, removing her gloves. "You said you strained your back? How?"

"Um, well..." Emma stammers. "You know... Regina and I... we did the thing... with a thing... "

Marilyn looks over toward Regina for a translation.

"We had sex using the toy I told you about."

"You told her?" Emma exclaims.

"Of course. I had to make sure it was safe. For both of us."

"Yes," Marilyn interrupts. "Last night's activities were doctor approved. Tell me about your overexertion."

Emma's mouth hangs open for a few seconds before she continues. "Well, it's been a while since we... used a toy... and my body has changed a lot since then... So muscles got used that haven't been used in a long time... if ever... And I woke up with a little muscle strain. Why?"

"Have you felt any contractions?"

"No."

"None?"

"I had a few pangs or twinges here and there but not contractions."

"Why are you asking if she's felt contractions?" Regina asks.

"Because she's four centimeters dilated."

"Four?!"

"What?!"

"What's going on?!" Henry yells from the bathroom.

Marilyn motions for Emma to put her pants back on, then walks over to the sink.

"Everything is fine!" Regina calls out to Henry. "Just give your mother a minute to get dressed and you can come out."

Emma finishes tying the drawstring to her pants and pulls her shirt down over her abdomen. "Come on out, kid!" She yells.

"What happened?" Henry asks. "Why were you yelling?"

"Your mother is four centimeters dilated," Regina says.

"Cool. Why didn't you say you were having contractions, too?"

"Because I haven't had any."

"You had to have had," Regina says.

"Look, I know contractions," Emma protests. "I felt every inch and ounce of baby boy over there, without drugs by the way, and the twinges I've been having don't feel anything like that."

"Second babies are frequently easier than first babies," Marilyn says. "Plus no two deliveries are the same anyway. Did you take anything for your back strain this morning?"

Emma's eyes get wide. "I took some acetaminophen."

"You took pain medication on your due date?" Regina asks incredulously.

"Oh come on. It's not like I took an opioid. It was two Tylenol and it wasn't even extra strength Tylenol, just regular strength. It was the ibuprofen you told me not to take in the third trimester."

Regina chuckles and shakes her head. "Unbelievable."

"I tried bed rest at first," Emma explains. "When we went back to sleep after the sunrise. But then you still wanted to go to the festival, and I knew we would be sitting on those hard ass chairs for forever, so I took two Tylenol."

"So it's my fault?" Regina asks.

"It's no one's fault. I'm just telling you what happened."

"How often have you felt these twinges?" Marilyn asks.

Emma shrugs. "Every hour or so. But I think the Tylenol is wearing off because the last one was a little bit stronger."

Regina sighs.

"When was the last... twinge?" Marilyn asks.

Emma points to the puddle that is currently tented by a wet floor sign.

"You guys are funny," Henry says. "Neither one of you knew you were in labor."

"Shut up," Emma laughs.

"I'm going to put a fetal monitor on you now as well," Marilyn says. "It will keep an accurate measurement of your uterine activity."

"Fine," Emma says.

Marilyn attaches the same type of sticky sensors to Emma's abdomen that Regina has on hers and then places the battery powered transmitter. The fetal monitor starts to move with the baby's heartbeats, Emma's heartbeats, and contractions.

Emma watches the lines for a minute. "See," she says, smiling. "No contractions."

"Give it time," Marilyn laughs. "You said they came every hour or so."

Emma's face falls.

Marilyn looks over toward Regina with concern. "You should have had another contraction by now," she says. "Probably more than one."

"What?" Regina's eyes move from Emma's monitor to her own.

Marilyn walks over to interpret the readout as well. "It's been about ten minutes since your last contraction."

"What does that mean?"

"I'm not sure. You were two minutes apart earlier. Baby's heartbeat is strong and steady. Let me feel your abdomen." Marilyn places both hands on Regina's belly and moves them to several different locations. "Baby is in a good position. Is she moving regularly?"

"Yes," Regina says. "She just stretched her legs into my rib cage a minute ago."

"I'm going to check your blood pressure."

"What is going on?" Emma asks.

"I'm not positive..." Marilyn says as she pumps the inflation bulb. "Blood pressure is within normal range. Are your feet or hands swollen or itchy?"

"No."

"Are you urinating regularly? Output volume matches how much you drink?"

"Yes. And I suppose. I haven't been worried about that."

"Any burning when you urinate?"

"No."

"You may have reached a plateau," Marilyn concludes.

"A plateau?" Regina asks.

"Yes, ma'am," Marilyn says. "Sometimes labor stalls for a while."

"Stalls?" Emma asks. "Like her engine just quit?"

"Pop the clutch," Henry says.

Everyone turns to look at him.

"Wh...where is mom's clutch?"

Emma starts to say something but Regina gives her a look and she stops.

"There are ways to get labor going again," Marilyn says. "But I need a few more tests to determine if it's necessary. If there's no emergency, we may just give momma a break for a few hours before intervening."

"Hours?" Regina asks.

"Well labor could always start back up on it's own at any time, too. Never can tell."

"This is the weirdest thing I've ever heard," Emma says.

"It happens often enough," Marilyn says while pulling out her phone and starting a text. "I'm going to get you an ultrasound and verify the baby is facing the right way. It feels like it, but I want visual proof."

"So we're not having a baby right now?" Henry asks.

"Not this minute, no. It doesn't look like it," Marilyn says.

"Well, what should we do?" Emma asks. "Is my wife okay? Is the baby okay?"

"They are both fine. We will know more after the ultrasound."

"Do we have to go somewhere?" Henry asks.

"No," Marilyn says. "There is a portable ultrasound machine down the hall. I'm bringing it and the technician to you. And someone with a mop, too."

*************

Henry is sitting in a big comfy chair, staring up at the ceiling and counting the tiles. He raises his head to look at the ultrasound pictures of his little sisters and smiles. Then he looks over toward his mothers.

Regina's birthing bed has been converted to look more like a cushioned throne than a bed. She is sitting on the main portion while Emma is sitting between her legs on the lowered section. They are chatting quietly while his brunette mother runs a brush through Emma's long blond hair. An ancient episode of Xena is playing on the wall-mounted television.

"So," Henry says. "When you guys do Netflix and chill, you really just watch netflix and chill?"

Emma laughs. "We are today anyway," she says with a wink.

Regina tugs on the braid she's starting and Emma whispers ouch. "Are you bored, sweetheart?"

Henry shrugs. "I thought having babies would be more exciting than this. How much longer? We've been waiting forever."

"Emma is seven centimeters now and I'm still stuck on eight and a half. So we have a while to go."

"Why don't you go down to the gift shop?" Emma says.

"Yes," Regina agrees. "Get a notebook and pen so you can record your thoughts on this momentous day."

"See if they have a phone charger," Emma adds.

"Maybe," Henry mumbles.

"You can only watch so many videos before your battery drains," Emma teases. "Still can't believe you left the house without your backpack."

"It's summer." Henry says just as his stomach growls.

"Excuse you," Emma fakes offense.

"Go to the cafeteria and eat first," Regina says. "Must be near dinner time by now and you missed lunch, too."

"I don't want to leave you guys."

"You might miss a contraction or two," Emma says. "We'll be fine. But take my phone and we'll call you if anything happens."

"Okay. I am hungry."

"Do not look at the pictures," Emma winks as she hands him the phone.

Henry sighs and walks out the door.

"Why would you put that in his head?" Regina asks. "Or in his hand?"

"Relax. There isn't anything not safe for work or children on there. He can't even unlock it anyway. If something happens, he would just see your phone calling my phone and know to come back."

"You're so naughty."

"He's fun to tease."

A contraction overcomes Emma and Regina reaches down to rub her back and help her breathing until the pain subsides.

"How long since the last one?" Emma asks.

Regina peers over Emma's bed toward her monitor and squints. "I can't tell. Looks like ten minutes."

"This is taking forever."

"Hush, you. At least you're making progress."

"Sorry. I could stimulate your nipples again if it'll make you feel better."

"With Henry coming back soon? Pass. My breasts do feel like they're going to explode though."

"Got milk?" Emma jokes.

Regina smirks as she finishes the first braid and starts on the second one.

"Are you hungry?" Emma asks.

"Yes. I am very hungry."

"I'm starving. You know what would really hit the spot?"

"Fruit loops?"

"Fruit loops! Yes! God, I love you! You know me so well."

"I think everyone knows you love fruit loops."

"Yeah but to know that's what I'm craving right now at this very second...that's like a psychic connection or something."

"Or maybe I want fruit loops, too."

"Now see that's the true love connection right there."

A knock on the door reveals Marilyn who has returned to discuss Regina's options.

"Any contractions?" she asks Regina.

"No. Not even a little one."

"Okay, I'm going to give you a rundown of what can be done to get things moving again."

"Well, we've been walking and walking and walking," Emma says. "That hasn't helped her much. Just made me sweaty."

"I know waiting can be frustrating but since the baby is in no danger and there are no signs of eclampsia or infection, you can continue to wait. Labor will most likely begin again at some point. You won't be pregnant forever."

"That's good to hear."

"If you get impatient, there are some medications that we can use. Hormone pills you take orally or suppositories we can insert vaginally."

"Va-gi-na," Emma whispers.

Regina looks at Emma strangely then turns back to Marilyn. "I really don't want to take drugs or do anything drastic unless the baby is in jeopardy."

"Our love's in jeopardy...baby... " Emma sings.

Regina rolls her eyes and continues. "If the baby isn't in danger, I don't want to medically intervene."

"Well, you can continue walking," Marilyn says. "You may not think it is helping, but it is. There's the birthing ball you can bounce on."

"I've got a ball she can bounce on," Emma whispers.

"Don't mind her," Regina says, casting Emma an evil look. "She missed her nap and a sugar fix."

"I'll see that some dinner is sent up," Marilyn says. "Food could actually help you get things moving again, too."

"Really?" Regina asks.

"Yes. As could nipple stimulation."

"I offered," Emma says. "She told me to go fuck myself."

"Emma!" Regina scolds.

"It's something to consider," Marilyn says. "Not intercourse but some nipple or clitoral stimulation would naturally release the hormones that the pills or suppositories would substitute."

Emma laughs. "Remember when we were just fuck buddies for hormonal release purposes? And our code word for hook ups was tune ups? And I came back from New York and you asked me for a tune up? But I wanted to get tested first because I fucked a flying monkey? So I just stimulationed your clitoral with my fingers in Granny's bathroom?"

Shocked brown eyes stare at Emma in disbelief. "What the hell is wrong with you?" Regina demands.

Emma gasps. "I lied to my mother, Regina. To protect your reputation. We did do it in a public bathroom. Just not today!"

"Marilyn! Something is very off with her."

"Don't tell my mom, Marilyn!" Emma laughs. "What happens in L&D, stays in L&D!"

"I don't detect any magic," Regina says while caressing Emma's face. "This has to be medical."

"I'm going to test her blood sugar," Marilyn says. "You said she missed a sugar fix? Has she done this before?"

"No! She loses her filter when she's tired or hungry. Gets a little goofy but nothing like this."

Emma snorts. "Mickey Mouse was talking to his divorce lawyer and the lawyer says 'You can't get a divorce just because Minnie is a little weird' and Mickey says 'I didn't say she was weird, I said she was fucking Goofy!'"

Emma chuckles until Marilyn pricks her finger. "Ow!"

Marilyn collects the drop of blood on a test strip and places the strip in the glucose monitor.
"Right at 65," she says, walking to the mini fridge. "That's low. I'm going to give her some orange juice and test her again in fifteen minutes."

"We got a mini fridge?" Emma asks. "How'd I miss that?"I

"This is from lack of orange juice?" Regina asks.

"Her blood glucose level dropped," Marilyn explains. "Most likely due to missing a meal or two and exacerbated by labor and exercise. Babies use up a lot of momma's glucose, so do contractions and all of the walking you've been doing. A drop like that can cause a change in behavior among other symptoms. I've never seen it manifest like this though. Most people get irritated and cranky."

"Have a snickers!" Emma says. "You're not yourself when you're hungry."

"Drink your juice," Regina says. "Bottoms up."

Emma smiles, "That's the way we like to--- " She shuts up at Regina's fierce look and drinks all of her juice.

"She passed her glucose tolerance test a few months ago," Marilyn says. "But that is just a three hour fasting test. I'm guessing she's gone longer than three hours today without eating?"

Regina nods and pets Emma's head in her lap.

Marilyn continues. "If her level rises after the juice, we'll know it's a temporary thing. But we will continue to monitor her blood sugar for the next few days and we will test the baby's levels as well. When momma's is low, baby's can be high. And vice versa."

"Oh, shit!" Emma says, as another contraction starts. Regina rubs her back and breathes with her until the pain goes away.

"Thank you," Emma whispers as it passes. "I'm feeling a little better. I'm sorry about all that."

"It's fine," Regina says. "As long as you're okay."

"I still want fruit loops. And a nap."

Regina chuckles.

"We'll get you some protein and carbs," Marilyn says. "Can you tell me what happened?"

"I don't know. I was hot and tired from all the walking and I really needed to sit down. Regina offered to braid my hair and that cooled me off for a minute. Then I felt really hungry and after that I got stupid goofy."

"Fatigue, sweating, and hunger are a few symptoms of hypoglycemia. Mental confusion is also a symptom. Your fast response to the orange juice almost confirms it's just a drop in blood sugar but I'm going to order a blood draw to test your iron. Your anemia could have been a factor."

"She takes her iron supplements and prenatal vitamins every day," Regina says. "And I always include iron enriched foods in her meals at home."

"I still want to run the test even if it's just to rule it out. I also want to check liver function plus cortisol and insulin levels just as a precaution."

"It was kind of scary," Emma says. "It was like word vomit, I couldn't stop it."

"If it happens again, drink the juice and test your blood. I'll teach you both how to do that when I test you again in a few minutes. It's important to eat small meals at least every three hours to keep your levels even."

"What should her glucose level be?" Regina asks.

"Between 85 and 110 is the sweet spot. It's okay to go a little lower or higher before and after meals as long as it goes back within the range quickly. Drink juice if it drops low, drink water if it's high. I'll give you some literature with more details but that is the gist of it."

"Thank you, doctor," Regina says.

"I'm going to stick around for a while," Marilyn add. "Update her chart and order the blood draw and also some food for you both from the laptop in here and then I'll test her blood sugar again when I'm done."

"Thanks, doc," Emma whispers.

Marilyn walks over to the computer, giving Emma and Regina a few minutes to talk privately.

"That was so freaky," Emma says. "I hope it never happens again."

"Well, you haven't missed any meals in a very long time so we didn't know it was possible. And now you will never miss another one."

"Are you threatening me with your excellent cooking?"

"Oatmeal raisin cookies."

"You really are evil."

"I just added broccoli to my lasagna recipe."

"Pasta, carbs, good. Broccoli, bad."

"Broccoli, iron, good. Tomato sauce, fruit that helps iron absorption, good."

"Okay. A. It's my glucose that fucked me up, not my iron. And B. Tomatoes are not a fruit."

"Okay. A. We won't know for sure iron wasn't a factor until after the test. And B. Tomatoes are so a fruit."

"So not."

"So yuh-huh."

"You did not just say yuh-huh."

"I did, because tomatoes are a fruit."

"Then why don't you put them in fruit salad?"

Henry returns just in time to hear the tomato debate. "Did anything happen while I was gone?" he asks.

"I had two contractions and embarrassed your mother."

"The doctor is going to run some more tests."

"And now you're arguing over tomatoes. Glad I didn't miss anything exciting."

Emma chuckles.

"Did you eat?" Regina asks.

"Yes, ma'am. Had a sandwich and chips in the cafeteria. And I got you guys something to snack on from the vending machine."

He reaches into his lumpy gift shop bag then hands each of them a fruit loops cereal bar.

Regina puts on her glasses to read the nutritional contents while Emma's green eyes get misty.

"True love connection," she whispers.

**********

Emma can't stop laughing. She's sitting with her legs propped up in her adjusted birthing bed which has been moved directly beside Regina's so the wives can hold hands. Both bassinets have been prepared and a team of nurses are standing by, ready to move when needed.

"It's like the tortoise and the hare," Emma manages to squeak out.

"What are you going on about?" Regina gasps between breaths during her latest contraction.

"Snow White Junior was winning the Be Born First race and decided to take a nap. Then when I hit eight and a half centimeters, she wakes up and your labor starts again! It's hilarious."

Regina exhales slowly as her pain subsides. "I fail to see the humour," she grumbles. "It's just a coincidence. And stop calling her that!"

"You picked out the name!"

"It's a beautiful name! And if you ever tell your mother what it means, I swear to god I will tell her about the time we had sex in her bed!"

"Grandma's in the bathroom putting on her scrubs," Henry says from Regina's side. "She can hear you."

"We did not have sex," Emma whispers loudly. "We only cuddled."

"There was heavy petting," Regina retorts. "Very heavy."

"I was trying to give you some of my magic."

"Well you gave me an orgasm."

"I can hear you," Henry says.

"An unintentional orgasm," Emma defends.

"And your parents were sleeping right upstairs," Regina continues.

"I can't help it if I have magic fingers," Emma defends.

"If this was just before Neverland," Henry calculates, "Was I upstairs, too?"

"You were staying with Granny," Regina whispers.

"Oh, god!" Emma squeals as a strong contraction hits her.

"Did I miss anything?" Snow asks, as she returns and walks to Emma's side.

"No," Henry says quickly. "Just one contraction each. Absolutely nothing else."

Snow gives Henry an amused look then takes Emma's hand and along with Regina, helps her breathe through the pain.

"Is it too late to get that epidural?" Emma asks after it passes.

Marilyn looks up from her position between both of their spread legs. "Way too late," she says. "You'll both be crowning soon."

The midwife beside Marilyn suppresses a smile.

"I swear," Regina says as her breaths accelerate with an oncoming contraction, "if you give birth before I do, I will never forgive you!"

"I can't control that!" Emma says.

"You can control how hard you push!"

A gush of fluid spills out of Regina, landing in the waste basin. "I'm so sorry!" She gasps is disbelief.

"It's fine," Marilyn says. "Your water just broke. Happens all the time."

"Finally," Emma teases. "Nothing like waiting until the last minute."

"I can see the top of baby's head," Marilyn says.

"Really?" Regina asks.

"Yes, ma'am. Covered in white peach fuzz."

"She's got your hair," Regina whispers to Emma, kissing her hand.

"Blond procrastinator," Emma says. "You're going to have a mini ME."

"Fine by me," Regina agrees.

"Alright, Regina," Marilyn says. "With your next contraction I want you to put your chin to your chest and push. Bear down like you're going to the bathroom. Henry, you need to help support Momma's back and to count to ten like I told you earlier. Regina, when you hear Henry reach ten, you need to relax and take some deep breaths, then push again. Repeat that process until the contraction ends."

Regina nods and relaxes as she waits for her next contraction.

Marilyn looks over toward Emma's exposed center and chuckles. "Emma, I need you to do the same thing I just told Regina."

"Seriously?" Emma asks. "You see the head?"

"Yes, I do. Lots of dark, wavy hair playing peek-a-boo."

"She's got YOUR hair," Emma says to Regina. Regina's smile is radiant.

"As soon as the babies are out," Marilyn says, "we will suction their mouths then place them on your tummies for a quick clean up and bonding. You will still need to push a few more times for the placentas."

Emma and Regina both absently nod in understanding but can't take their eyes off each other.

Snow and Henry exchange excited smiles.

Emma grimaces as a pain hits her.

"Push," Regina orders.

Emma leans forward and bears down while Snow supports her back and counts to ten. Almost immediately, a contraction seizes Regina and she leans forward and pushes while Henry supports her and counts. The cycle repeats three times and they never let go of each other's hand.

"Okay, take a break," Marilyn says when the contractions end. "You both did very well."

They both fall back against their beds and catch their breath.

"You okay?" Emma asks Regina.

"I'm great," Regina whispers. "I could do this all day."

"You doing okay, kid?"

"Yeah," Henry says. "This is awesome."

"Are you going to write a story about it?" Regina asks.

"Definitely adding it to the story book," he says. "This is a happy ending if I've ever seen one."

"Or a happy beginning," Emma says. "Just no hoo-haws in the illustrations, alright?"

"Gross."

The contractions strike simultaneously again and they both bear down and count. They take a five second breather then bear down again.

Regina begins to wail as the baby's head emerges.

Henry cannot resist the urge to peek and looks as the baby rotates from a downward facing position to sideways.

"Where is her face?!" he calls out.

"What?" Emma yells between pushes. "She had a face in the ultrasound!"

"Does she have the veil?" Regina asks Marilyn.

The doctor nods and removes the layer of amniotic membrane, revealing perfectly cute if scrunched up features. "One more big push for the shoulders, momma."

Regina pushes while a confused but relieved Henry counts and shortly thereafter a crying baby is placed on Regina's belly.

Tears of joy flow down Regina's cheeks. Henry kisses his mother's head.

"She's beautiful," Emma says, as her contraction ends.

The baby stops crying and opens her eyes at the sound of Emma's voice.

"She may have Swan hair," Regina says. "But her eyes are all Mills."

The baby's bottom lip puckers out before she yawns and closes her eyes again.

Another contraction hits Emma and she bears down while Snow counts. After one more push, she too has a baby placed on her tummy.

Emma cannot hide the smile on her face nor can she stop staring at the babies she gets to keep.

"Congratulations," Snow whispers, kissing Emma's head.

"Hi, baby sisters," Henry says. "I'm your brother. We have two moms."

"You sure do," Regina says. "Two moms who love all three of you more than anything else in the whole world."

"Or in all the realms," Emma adds. "Forever and always."

"Introduce them," Snow suggests.

Regina and Emma maneuver the babies around until they are nestled in the crooks of their mothers arms beside each other.

Emma picks up a baby hand and pretends to wave. "Say 'Hi, sissy,'" she whispers.

"Say hello to your sister," Regina says.

The baby in Emma's arms opens her eyes and looks up at Regina.

"Oh," Regina whispers with a smile. "Guess she couldn't decide whose eyes she wanted."

"What does that mean?" Emma asks.

"She has one brown and one green."

"She kept it even," Henry says. "Emma and I have green eyes, Mom and Blondie have brown eyes. She's maintained the symmetry."

"Aww," Emma says. "Look at momma. Hi, little chimera baby. Are you part mom and part momma? You're perfect. You're both perfect."

"Time to cut the cords," Marilyn says.

Emma and Regina look down at the scissors that Marilyn is handing to each of them. Regina cuts Emma's cord and Emma cuts Regina's.

"We can hold off on weighing and measuring them," Marilyn says, "if you want to trade babies for a minute."

"Oh, my god," Emma gushes as they switch babies. "You really do have your mother's eyes. Hello, my brown eyed girl."

"She looks so much like Henry," Regina whispers as she cradles a brunette head and counts little fingers and toes.

"Have you picked out any names?" Snow asks.

"Yeah," Emma answers. "Regina chose their first names and I chose their middle names."

"It was the diplomatic way for them both to name both babies," Henry says. "Or something like that."

"Well, what are they?" Snow asks.

"There will be a royal announcement," Regina says. "Later tonight at the bonfire."

"Royal announcement? How did that happen?"

"Well," Emma says. "A queen gets bored when her labor stalls for over six hours."

"And," Regina adds. "When a queen's wife wants revenge on a certain loudmouth dwarf for not being discrete... Well, a queen makes things happen."

**********

Leroy struts around the burning flames of the bonfire, carrying a large scroll under his arm while blasting a traditional royal proclamation tune on his harmonica.

He is decked out, head to toe, in full town crier regalia. His three point hat has a large, fluffy white feather and his shiny leather shoes have red hearts on the buckles. The royal crest on his chest and back shows five flowers that match Emma's tattoo across the top, two adult swans sharing a crown in the middle, their curved necks forming a heart, and three cygnets along the bottom.

"Hear ye! Hear ye!" Leroy yells, unrolling the scroll. "Big news!"

Everyone stops pointing and laughing to quiet down and listen to what the dwarf has to say.

"Their Royal Majesties Queens Regina and Emma of the house Swan-Mills safely delivered two daughters at 8:25 and 8:26 in the evening, on the 20th day of June in the year two thousand and sixteen. Princesses Gwyneira Hope and Kaela Faith are resting and doing well with their mothers and big brother, Prince Henry."

"Who gave birth to who?" Someone yells.

"They didn't say," Leroy answers.

"Which one was born first?"

"They didn't say," Leroy grumbles. "But Snow was there. We'll find all that out soon enough."

"No, you won't! " Snow declares as she pauses handing out cigars just to give Leroy a mean look. "I'm sworn to secrecy and it's a secret I intend to keep!"

"Any other questions?" Leroy bellows. "No? Good. Now, enjoy the rest of your bonfire. And have a happy summer solstice and full strawberry moon festival, compliments of Regina, Emma, Henry, Gwyn, and Kaela."

Chapter Text

Emma wakes up suddenly. One second she was having the once forbidden dream, the next second she's snuggling against amazing curves. Curves she has grown accustomed to cuddling.

She gazes around the warmly familiar room that she can navigate even in her sleep. Directly in her line of vision the partially open drapes are admitting a thin beam of sunlight. Craning her neck to look over Regina's shoulder, she squints to read the time but Henry's borrowed antique alarm clock is facing the wrong direction. She wracks her brain trying to figure out why she feels so discombobulated.

She sits up slowly, letting the sheet fall down to her waist, exposing her bare chest to the chilly air. She carefully pulls the sheet back up to cover Regina, then looks toward the crib at the foot of their bed. A baby quilt is draped over the side rail obstructing her view, so she holds her breath and tunes out the ticking of Henry's mechanical rooster and ignores Regina's soft exhalations. She listens intently until she hears the faint sounds of their babies' slumbering breaths.

"They didn't wake up at four," a husky voice startles Emma. She looks down to see Regina roll over and curl up against her, wrapping an arm around her waist.

The previous three months flash through Emma's mind. Waking up every midnight and four a.m. The nursing, the pumping, and endless rounds of diaper changing. The sleep deprivation.

"What time is it?" Emma asks.

"Seven." Regina mumbles against her pillow.

"You didn't even look."

"Seven-ish. Judging by the sun."

"Are the twins okay?"

"Yes, Emma. They just slept through the night."

"Babies do that?"

"Eventually."

"Are they going to do this from now on?"

Regina sighs and rubs her eyes. "Maybe. Hopefully. Could be a fluke...Henry was almost five months before he slept through the night."

"Five months?"

Regina nods and tugs Emma toward her. "So enjoy this moment while you can."

Emma shrugs then stretches and twists her back until she hears a slight pop in her spine. She lays back down and wraps her arms around her wife. Regina burrows her nose against Emma's neck.

Emma kisses her forehead, takes a deep breath, closed her eyes, and relaxes into the soft bedding. Her eyes pop open. "We should wake up Henry."

Regina grunts.

"He'll be late for school."

"He's up," Regina whispers.

"How do you know?"

"I smell bacon."

Emma inhales deeply and moans. "And coffee?...We have the best kid. I don't even care if it's decaf and turkey bacon. That smells like heaven."

Regina places a kiss behind Emma's ear. "You smell like heaven."

Emma laughs while she turns her head to expose more neck for Regina to kiss. "Love has left you delusional," she whispers. "My breath smells like an ogre fart."

Regina chuckles then maneuvers around to get on top of Emma. She places a few more kisses along her jawline then sits back until she is straddling Emma's abs. "I guess I'll have to keep my distance," she teases.

Emma's eyes grow wide as she takes in her wife's naked form above her. "What are you doing?" She caresses Regina's waist and lifts her own hips, trying to make contact with Regina's center. "Do we even have time for this?"

Regina shakes her head no. "Definitely not," she whispers while rotating her pelvis in small circles around Emma's navel. "The twins could wake up any second...And if I know our son he's preparing a tray to bring us breakfast in bed."

"How could you possibly know that?"

"He does it every time he cooks breakfast when we aren't downstairs."

Emma whines and bites her lip. "Then why start...?" Her hands move from Regina's waist to her hips to her thighs and back to her waist. She resists the urge to cup the full breasts jiggling in front of her.

"Because you're irresistible," Regina croons. She takes one of Emma's directionless hands and places it between her legs. She rises up just high enough then sinks down onto Emma's fingers. "And this won't take long."

Emma watches in awe, mouth agape, as Regina rides her like an expert equestrian. They maintain eye contact as Regina girates her hips, up and down, forward and back.

Emma rotates her wrist, matching Regina's rhythm, tapping her g-spot on each downward motion.

Regina leans away as the tension inside her builds. Emma brings her other hand down and starts teasing Regina's clit with her thumb.

Regina arches her back, grabs onto Emma's thighs and finally breaks their intense gaze as she throws her head back.

"You are so beautiful," Emma whispers just as three things happen simultaneously.

Regina cries out as her inner walls clamp down around Emma's fingers. She continues to undulate and milk the embedded digits as the babies begin to whimper, and Henry knocks on the door.

Emma panics and waves her clit-hand through the air. Regina raises her head in confusion just as the white smoke dissipates.

Emma mouths the words "you owe me" to Regina before taking a calming breath and calling out "come in" towards the door.

When Henry enters the room, Regina is still sitting astride Emma but they are both wearing pajamas, all evidence of Regina's orgasm has been cleaned from Emma's hands, and the fresh scent of febreeze has replaced the smell of sex.

"Why are you guys out of breath?" Henry asks.

Emma looks at their son who is holding a tray full of breakfast foods, then back at Regina who is still reeling in post orgasmic bliss, and chuckles. "Tickle fight," she whispers while caressing Regina's thighs.

Henry rolls his eyes. "Yeah, that doesn't sound like a lie at all."

"Well," Emma teases. "If you really want to know... "

"Nope!" Henry interrupts. "Tickle fight is fine. Anyway, happy anniversary. I made you breakfast in bed."

"Anniversary?" Regina asks. "We were married in December. It's only September."

Henry stammers for a moment then awkwardly motions toward the crib while searching for the right words. "It's...been a year...since the eclipse."

Emma and Regina look at each other as they process the information.

"Oh," Emma whispers. "That's really... "

"Sweet," Regina finishes.

"I know it's weird," Henry continues as he sets the tray down on the bed beside his mothers. "But you guys figured out you had true love that night and you made magical babies. It was the start of making our family complete."

"Aww," Regina smiles at Emma who chuckles.

"Well..." Emma comments. "We didn't really figure out the true love thing for another month and a half."

Henry laughs. "How did you not notice the rainbow blast?"

"Um," Emma looks to Regina for a way to not explain about drunken hook ups and magical appendage potions.

"The forgetting potion," Regina supplies.

Emma nods. "Yes, the forgetting potion totally made us forget the...rainbow blast."

Henry shakes his head but lets the discrepancy slide. "I don't need the details," he says and walks over to the crib to check on the twins. They are now awake and smile up at him. He lets each baby grab onto a finger and is impressed by their tight grips. "All that matters is my sisters were created that night and that's pretty special."

Emma and Regina watch Henry and smile as he plays with his sisters. Emma picks up a glass of orange juice and hands it to Regina then picks up a cup of coffee for herself. "Why don't you change their diapers, best big brother, while your mother and I eat?"

"I would love to but I don't have time. I'm picking up Grace in a little bit and we're going to Granny's to get more signatures before school starts."

"The dress code petition," Regina says. "How many signatures do you have so far?"

"About a fourth of all students have signed so far. I'm hoping for a third or even better to have half before I take it to the next school board meeting."

"You should get some elementary school student signatures," Emma suggests. "This would effect them too and they should be able to flex their voice about it. "

Regina nods. "You should get parent signatures as well. Especially if they're on the parent council."

Emma nods and swallows her bacon before adding, "Get the teachers to sign, too. Let those jerks on the board know almost everyone wants this. Majority rules."

"That's what I was thinking, " Henry says as he pulls a copy of the petition and a pen out of his pocket and hands them to Regina. "Having the mayor's signature will carry a lot of weight, too."

Regina smirks as she uses Emma's abdomen as a flat surface and adds her name to the dozens of other signatures.

Henry smiles and points to Emma. "You, too, sheriff."

Emma balks. "I never even went to that school and I'm not on the council."

"You are the parent of a student," Regina says.

"Of a boy student," Emma protests. "This petition wouldn't even change anything for him."

"Mom," Henry sighs. "You have two daughters who will go to Storybrooke schools. Do you really want them to freeze their little legs off every winter? Just because an archaic rule makes uniform skirts mandatory for girls?"

"Well, when you put it that way," Emma relents and sloppily scrawls her name below Regina's neat signature.

Henry beams. "Thank you," he says as he takes the petition back. "I gotta go. You guys should feed and change my sisters before they start crying."

Regina hops up off of Emma and the bed while Emma shoves a piece of toast in her mouth.

"Oh," Henry says as he stops by the door. "Emma? Can we work on the motorcycle tonight after basketball practice?"

Emma nods and gulps down her food. "Call me when you're on your way home."

"Cool."

"Henry?" Regina says as she hands a baby to Emma and goes to change the other's diaper.

Henry smiles. "I mean...thank you Emma, for helping me rebuild my motorcycle that I bought with my own money. I do so appreciate this bonding and learning experience...for the both of us."

Regina giggles. "That is better but I was going to say why don't you leave a couple copies of your petition downstairs? Emma can take one to the station and I can take one to town hall when I go in today."

"That is a great suggestion, Mom. I already left two copies on the kitchen counter. Thanks again. Love you. Bye. "

Emma laughs. "There goes out baby boy. Off on a noble quest to change school policy."

"And all because Grace shivered three days ago," Regina sighs.

Emma unbuttoned her pajama top and let's a hungry baby latch on greedily. Regina takes a seat beside her and they both settle in to nurse babies.