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Dark As Knight

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SQ :: SWAN QUEEN :: SQ

SQ :: SWAN QUEEN :: SQ

Previously...

"My water broke."

"What? Now!?"

"Yes, dear...now." Regina just laughed, it was finally happening. She felt hands on her shoulders, gently kneading the muscles to keep her calm and away from the panic she felt creeping around the edges of her mind, judging by the sweet and strong smell; it was Cora. Despite not trusting her mother for as far as she could throw her—Regina was somewhat happy she could share this moment with the older Mills woman, to show her that she did it...she made her dreams come true.

The doors to the dining hall flew open, but it wasn't Red with the birthing mothers and doctors like they expected, but it was another knight carrying a mirror. He skidded to a stop in front of them, panting so heavily that none of them could hear what the Genie was saying, until Pocahontas snatched the mirror from the overweight knight, and shoved him away with a tad more force than was necessary, but she could care less at that moment.

The Genie repeated what he had said, and everyone's blood ran cold. "Snow White's army is coming!"

SQ :: SWAN QUEEN :: SQ

Emma, for the first time in nearly six years—felt fear. Pure, unadulterated fear. Not because Snow's army was big and powerful, and quite possibly unstoppable but fear for her family...fear for the time they had not yet experienced together.

Emma became hyper- aware of the puddle of clear liquid she was kneeling in when Red came running in with the birthing mothers and doctors. None of them noticed the shattered mirror at Pocahontas' feet, or the overall tension.

Emma stood and allowed the doctors and maidens to tend to the Dark Queen, but Regina halted their movements and caught Emma's eyes. "Do what you have to my Dark Knight and come back to me."

"I will..."

Regina held on tighter to Emma's wrists, nails nearly drawing blood from pale skin—brown eyes burning with intensity. "Promise me!"

Emma leaned down and kissed Regina despite the flurry of activity around them. "I promise..." she whispered before she forced herself to stand tall, and looked with steely eyes, right into Cora's.

An unspoken agreement happened during the almost-eerie silence between the two very intense women. Cora would replace Emma until the blonde was able to return to her daughter's side. Emma squeezed Regina's hand before releasing it,while walking to Pocahontas, her magic slowly replacing Emma's casual clothing with her fully-equipped armor. Emma pulled up her hood and stood directly in front of The Native Warrior.

"I'm going to slow down that army and get that little boy. Prepare our soldiers and get three men on every cannon. I want archers posted in every tower. Double Regina's protection. If anything happens to her...sister or not.." Emma took a step forward in Pocahontas' personal space, eyes darkening. She didn't need to finish that sentence, the message was immensely clear in her viridian eyes.

Pocahontas nodded curtly, taking the threat to heart. "I will...we are family Emma." then a little louder, with a salute. "Good luck Dark Knight." Emma nodded and disappeared.

SQ :: SWAN QUEEN :: SQ

Emma entered the shadow world and was pleased to see that Apache was already there waiting for her. His body encased in armor with the Dark Kingdom's insignia etched on his saddle beautifully, even his tail had armor on it that could be used as a weapon. His eyes were encased in darkness just as hers were...whether it stemmed from her own anger and determination or his sheer will to protect his family, she did not know or care, at the moment.

Emma pulled herself onto his back easily and without her commanding him to, he turned around and took off running through the realms of the Shadow World and the Enchanted Forest. The moon and stars were not present, which allowed them to run invisibly through the darkness. Apache was jumping over fallen trees and dodging around them so closely, that Emma could see the outline of bark. He was running faster than he's ever run before. Both of their hearts were pumping wildly with massive amounts of adrenaline the closer they got to the mountains.

It wasn't too long until Apache came to a skidding halt at the edge of the Enchanted Forest, at a cliff that had a very, very steep drop. While Apache shifted and looked down curiously, Emma's pitch black eyes roamed over the canyons, looking for any sign of life. Apache's ears twitched and he turned his head, prompting Emma to turn as well. A few miles from their location, down in the canyons, was a faint light. Emma conjured up a telescope and took a closer look. It was Snow White's massive army running through the cannons with the Merry Men in front. Led by none-other than Snow White herself. Stately seated atop an enormous, snowy white steed. "Surprise, Surprise." Emma facetiously murmured quietly to nobody in particular.

Behind them were a few carriages and Emma saw that they were non-combatant women and children, and directly behind them were the massive drone soldiers running tirelessly...and there were many...more than they had originally feared. They were all carrying a torch that would prevent her from sneak attacking them. It was rather unfortunate, really. Emma set her telescope down and thought for a moment.

"Now why would Snow White bring villagers?" she mused out loud, then she decided to look ahead of Snow White's trail and laughed. There was a fork in the ridge, one path headed straight to the Enchanted Forest, and the other led elsewhere...to 'safety'. "Oh how predicable Snow." she got rid of the scope and grabbed Apache's reigns and they disappeared into the night.

SQ :: SWAN QUEEN :: SQ

Back at the Dark Kingdom...

Regina had been brought back to her bed-chambers with her mother, the hand-picked birthing mothers, Red (who was in wolf form, sitting by the fireplace) and a doctor. There were five guards posted outside the door and more littered down the hallways that led to Regina's room. Some were seen, others were not. Belle was busy handling the politics of the castle as Pocahontas prepared it, and it's army, for war.

Cora sat on the bed with Regina, holding her daughters hand and soothing her through every contraction, as they were coming closer and closer. The Matriarch could feel her daughter's magic radiating from her body and she could tell that some of that magic was not hers at all...their child was going to have both their combined magic and possibly be even more powerful than both of them. Cora was intrigued by this information, and stored it in the recesses of her mind for further investigation at a later time.

Regina, on the other hand was trying to get a grip on her magic. It was trying to break free and she was trying very hard not to punch Cora in the face. She kept saying it was okay, but Regina felt anything but okay. She was going to kick Emma's ass for getting her pregnant and putting her through this kind of- "Aah!" She nearly yelled before gritting her teeth and closing her eyes tightly, trying to breathe like she learned from the birthing mothers. Why hadn't she listened more closely and taken to heart what these women were trying to tell her? At the time it had seemed like nonsense! Breathing is natural, how can you possibly forget to do what comes naturally every moment of your life? Well, she found out. It was very hard to remember the one, supposedly-simple task she had to do before she could push this child out.

Breathe…

Cora winced as Regina forced her finger joints to pop, but she dared not complain, she saw the murderous side-glances Regina gave her when she thought she wasn't looking. "Is it time yet?" she panted when the contraction passed, but she knew it wasn't the one that she could start the pushing with. Seeing the Queen's evident distress, a timid, young birthing mother gently pressed a cold, wet cloth to Regina's hot skin to cool her down, her tiny hand trembling.

The doctor swallowed and shook his head nervously, "Not yet Your Majesty."

Regina snatched her hand out of Cora's to create a fireball, "If I don't have this baby soon, I'll kill you all, one-by-one, understand?!"

Red silently lowered herself to the floor and crawled closer to the door just in case she had to get out quickly. She liked her fluffy fur singe-free. The staff shared nervous glances and nodded at the Evil Queen, who wasn't even paying them any more attention. She had let her head fall back on the pillows, and was mentally preparing herself for the next wave of pain.

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The two Merry Men who were waiting by the fire with their horses and weapons were none-the-wiser of the impending danger walking up behind them. They were busy talking and laughing, already celebrating a war they had not even won yet. Heavy footsteps of Snow Whites army approaching were echoing off the canyon walls and could even be faintly felt if one was absolutely still…

Two pale hands appeared from the shadows behind the skinnier of the two Merry Men, and firmly snapped his neck. The bigger one choked on his rum as he stood quickly, and tried to draw his blade, but Emma was already there with her fist resting above his heart—he had no idea what was happening, and stumbled away from her and those black eyes. He tripped over the bucket he was previously sitting on, and clawed at his chest, trying to remove the dagger until he had no more breath left in him to do so.

It was almost comical really...it was his own blade, and he couldn't get it out. Emma paused. She felt Regina's magic calling out to her, the pull was so strong...so desperate that it physically hurt. She knew Regina needed her, and here she was playing around. Emma smiled though...it wasn't just Regina's magic that was calling her home, it was also their child. Apache nudged Emma's back with his long muzzle and broke her from her thoughts.

Emma went around to his side and pulled out a fat and healthy red apple. She walked back into his line of sight and fed it to him. "For being such a good boy...it's extra juicy."

Judging by the slobber and juice dripping out his mouth, he was immensely enjoying the juicy apple that Emma had handpicked for him from Regina's beloved apple tree. The footsteps that were echoing off the walls were getting louder and the vibrations were getting stronger. Emma smiled and patted Apaches strong neck, "Show time Boy! You remember what I told you?"

Apache huffed and turned his head arrogantly as Emma mounted him once more. Sometimes his attitude reminded him of Regina...not that she'd ever tell the brunette that. Emma waited until she could hear Snow White's annoying voice yelling out to her troops that this was their night, that the Evil Queen would be no more. The cheers were sickening, yet amusing. Emma took a deep breath and gave Apache the command.

The powerful horse took off into a full run and Emma gave him complete control of navigation. She held out her arms and called upon every ounce of Shadow Energy that she could. She could feel it crawling through her veins and felt the strain immediately, but she ignored it and pushed forward. She was pulling and expanding the shadows; manipulating them. Her body acting as an anchor. She saw Snow White's army ahead of her, but they couldn't see her...they weren't even aware she was there.

Emma had created dozens of duplicates of herself in the Shadow Realm that she was dragging behind them. They were harmless if one was protected with light, but Emma was planning on showing Snow White and her followers what darkness really was.

When Emma was close enough, she released the Shadow Realm and her shadow duplicates on Snow White's army and closed line the ex-Queen off of her horse. Every last torch flame died and Emma drew her sword as she jumped off of Apache and landed on the carriage that contained her prize. She sat crouched on the roof of the carriage, looking around at the destruction she had created...she couldn't hold it long, but the sight...the sounds, they were so...rewarding. The drones were not moving at all, not helping as the Merry Men were slaughtered like pigs.

"Henry!" Snow screamed blindly, still sitting on the ground with a broken nose and possibly a few loose teeth. "Henry!"

"Mom!" Henry screamed back, out the window. But his voice wasn't as loud as his mothers, it wasn't loud enough for him to be heard over the sound of death.

"Emma don't you hurt my son you bitch! Don't you dare! If you touch him I'll kill you myself!"

"Henry!" Robin Hood yelled out as he swung his own blade wildly, trying to fend off the attacks in a blind state of rage...killing two of his own men. "Henry! Run!"

Emma just laughed, but the strain of this particular power play was starting to really take it's toll on her body, and it was starting to hurt. She quickly opened the door to the carriage and saw Grace and Henry huddled together on a bench with a dozen other children. Emma reached in and grabbed Henry's collar and yanked him out, pulling Grace out as well, but Emma quickly dropped the girl on the ground and whistled for Apache.

Henry was struggling against her but Emma's grip was tight. She mounted her steed and held Henry by his collar and they were gone...everything was gone. The torches were lit once again, and if it weren't for the bodies surrounding them in the canyon, it would've been as if nothing had ever happened. The few remaining survivors were not fit for battle anymore, in fact... Emma had taken out half of Snow's army. Blue crawled from beneath a carriage, looking around warily. "Is it over?"

Robin wiped his brow, breathing deeply. "For now...yeah."

Snow scrambled to her feet and ran to Grace who was crying on the ground, when she saw the little girl was alright, she frantically looked inside the carriage over and over until it facts caught up with her brain...Henry was gone.

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"Regina! Breath!" Cora chided, pushing her daughters sweat soaked dark hair out of her face. "You're almost there!"

Regina let loose a blood-curdling, scream as she threw her head back and Red winced as the Dark Queen destroyed another eardrum. The birthing mother who was positioned between Regina's open thighs wiped her own brow, trying to stay calm lest she end up like the expired birthing mother across the room.

"Push darling push!" Cora coached, still running her hands through Regina's hair to soothe her distraught daughter.

Regina pushed as hard as she could, but she felt as if she were going to die any minute. "I'm going to kill Emma! Where is she?! Aaaaaahhhhhh!"

"I see the head! The child is crowning!" the birthing mother reported with a smile, she was relieved that the baby was finally coming out...her life might be spared tonight.

Suddenly the double doors were pushed open and the cause of all her pain walked into the room—looking more than worn out. Regina didn't care, she threw the biggest fire ball at Emma that she could conjure up. (She didn't notice that it was quite small, seeing as how she had expended much of her energy trying to birth their child). It hit Emma, but the Dark Knight brushed off the sting and went to kneel by her wife's bedside.

"Where is the boy?" Regina asked, grinding her teeth as she pushed again.

"In the Shadow Realm with Apache. He is secure don't worry." Emma answered quickly, taking Regina's hand—surprised at how clammy it felt. "How are you feeling?"

Everyone looked at Emma in alarm and Regina snatched her hand from Emma's and grabbed her Champion's collar. With surprising strength,considering...Regina brought Emma's face close to hers. "I swear this is not the time for your moronic Charming genes to make an appearance!" Regina held onto to the blonde tighter as she pushed harder, and it felt as if she suddenly could not stop. It was truly time!

Emma kissed Regina's chin lovingly, and before Regina could murder her—the most beautiful sound filled the room.

Everyone looked at the woman at the foot of the bed with wide eyes, some extremely relieved. She held the baby up with a giant smile... "It's a boy!" then she looked at Emma, "Would you like to cut the cord?"

Regina hadn't realized she was crying until Cora had wiped away some of her tears as she too was crying. Regina released Emma so the blonde could stand and officially welcome their wailing son into the world. "He certainly has a set of lungs darling...much like you when you were born."

Regina smiled but her watery eyes were on her lover, watching her carefully as she was waiting for the last few moments that Regina's body was giving their son life through the umbilical cord. It finally came to a halt, signaling the time to sever the cord. This was a sacred moment, and nobody even dared to breathe. Emma did so with an amazingly sturdy hand, as she felt anything but steady. Then, continuing to help the birthing mother clean and wrap their son in his powder blue blanket he continued his crying, but as Emma held him close to her heart their son soon settled down. It was amazing—it was as if he knew who Emma was. Emma was coming to introduce Regina to their son when Regina gasped in pain and the birthing mothers eyes went wide. She immediately felt Regina's still-swollen and tender abdomen and gently pressed down, feeling a large lump inside of her still. "There's another one!"

Cora's jaw dropped and Regina sent a death glare at Emma, "I'm going to fucking kill you!"

Emma almost started jumping with joy, but she simply kissed her sons forehead. "She doesn't mean that...she loves me, and she loves you too. In a minute you're going to meet your twin brother or sister, my little man!"

The second birth of their second, unexpected twin wasn't nearly as painful as their firstborn, but it was still uncomfortable and exhausting. If they thought the first one had a set of lungs, this one had a windbag. She was screaming her head off and was red in the face. "It's a girl!" the birthing mother announced happily, praying that there wasn't another one waiting in there—she wasn't sure how much she could take.

Emma came over and placed their quiet, sleeping son in Regina's waiting arms and went to greet their daughter. Regina and Cora cooed over the little boy, and Red had even risked taking a peek. There was no denying that, that was Emma's son. His light blond curls were short, but we're definitely there, and he looked just like her—Regina knew he'd be their trouble maker.

When they were sure there were no more babies waiting to pop out, the two remaining birthing mothers cleaned up Regina and the bed chambers, and quickly disappeared behind the two guards who were caring their poor birthing sister, but not before wishing the Queen and the Dark Knight their congratulations.

The doctor remained behind to make sure both twins were in good health and that Regina was okay to be left alone. When he was certain everything was okay, he left as well. Red went into the bathroom to shift and put on her clothes. When she came back out, Pocahontas and Belle came into the room—both hearing the shocking news through the kingdom's grapevine that Regina had given birth to a set of beautiful and perfectly healthy set of fraternal twins.

Belle and the others couldn't deny that both babies looked like a spitting image of their parents. Cora got off of the bed and let Emma replace her spot next to Regina. At this moment, there was no impending threat of war from Snow White...there was no Dark Curse ready to take them from their home, there wasn't anything but the love the two women had for each other and for their two children.

"What are their names?" Belle asked politely, not wanting to break the beautiful sight they were all having the distinct privilege to witness, but she was too curious not to ask.

Emma and Regina looked at each other with smiles, they had discussed names for the past couple of months for both a boy and a girl. Argued over them even. But now that they had both...

Emma leaned over and chastely kissed Regina, their daughter cooed quietly in Emma's arms as she stared up at her mothers.

Emma took a deep breath and looked at her family, "The little guy is-"

As she was making the announcement, a Dark Kingdom knight was hurled into the room through the balcony doors right over the Evil Queen and the Dark Knight. He hit the wall with a resounding thud. It was obvious that he was dead when he slid down to the floor. Everyone turned, alarmed… to the broken doors he flew through, and they could hear the walls around the Dark Kingdom being abused, and men shouting from down below.

Red ran to the balcony with Pocahontas right behind her...what they saw struck a small cord of fear, deep in their souls. Pocahontas looked at the royals worriedly, "Snow White is here!"

Emma nodded and quickly got out of the bed, still holding her cooing daughter. "Go. Now. We'll go to the throne room and start the Curse, keep them back for as long as you can! They might already be in the castle if no one came to warn us."

Pocahontas nodded and ran over to Emma, she set her hand on the blondes bare arm. Pocahontas bowed her head, and left. Light purple smoke engulfed Emma's body slightly, and when it was gone both of her hands were free...her daughter was now wrapped in very soft black silk, quite snugly attached to her torso. Emma turned and saw that their son was snuggled into Regina's front side in a similar material—though Emma surmised that he was probably much more comfortable, because Regina had more comfort to offer than herself, with those voluptuous curves still left from her pregnancy.

"I'll go prepare the fire and collect the artifacts." Belle announced and left the room, with a dagger in hand and Red in wolf form right behind her.

Cora attempted to help Regina out of the bed, but the younger brunette just waved the Matriarch away and used magic to change her clothes. She was wearing a pair of leather riding pants, with high leather boots and a red coat that flowed down to floor, like a royal cape. Her hair was pinned up in the front, but the back fell loosely down her back and Emma noted the sword that sat on her hip.

Regina winced as she began walking to the door, but she couldn't afford to waste any energy to heal herself. It would have to wait until they took care of Snow White, once and for all. Nothing was said between the three women, as there was really nothing left to say.

SQ :: SWAN QUEEN :: SQ

Pocahontas was running down corridor after corridor with her bow and arrow; firing off a shot at anyone who wasn't wearing the Dark Kingdom's insignia. Part of the castle was lit in flames and she found herself jumping over her dead soldier... more than she could count, and it was making her angry. How did this happen?! How did Snow White of all people inflitrate their walls like this.

Snow's drones were everywhere, inside and out, and it was taking multiple men to injure and take them down. Pocahontas turned another corner to a hallway that would lead her to the staircase that would get her down to the heart of the fight...but she found herself nearly knocked unconscious as a muscled arm close lined her. Pocahontas dropped her weapons and she laid on the blood-stained floor, a bit dazed.

"Go! Find the Evil Queen, I'll handle this." Pocahontas saw two shapes step over her and continued down the hall she had just come from...She blinked away the bleariness and saw that Robin Hood was standing over her, looking down at her smugly. Pocahontas got to her feet and realized that he was holding her compact bow and the last of her arrows. He tossed them down the stairs behind him, "Let's see how you fight without weapons."

Pocahontas loosened her neck and grinned, "I don't need toys to break you in half, Forest Boy."

Robin frowned and popped his knuckles, "That's cute...but I really hope you didn't think you'd make it out of this alive, Warrior."

Pocahontas chuckled, and got into a fighting stance. Robin scoffed and charged at the

Captain, a meaty fist flying towards her face. She blocked it, and wrapped her arm around his—trapping it at her side. Pocahontas winced at his stench, she reared back to head butt him and pushed him away.

Robin stumbled but kept his footing, he checked his nose and realized that the tall dark haired woman had broken it. "You'll pay for that."

"You can't afford me. I only accept gold. As in gold coins, not gold leaves."

Robin growled and pulled out two small daggers from behind his back, and wiped the blood from his mouth. "We'll see how funny you are when I finish with you."

He charged at Pocahontas once more, and this time he had the upper-hand. Pocahontas was on the defense and backpedaling down the corridor, trying to avoid his wild swinging. As they were passing by a rather large window, everything seemed to happen in slow motion...Robin's arm was outstretched, dagger held in a stabbing grip as Pocahontas shifted her weight onto her left leg—leaning back to avoid having her throat sliced open by his dirty blade.

Another Dark Kingdom soldier flew through the window, mere inches above them. He was a foot soldier, and was armored down heavily. With a quick mind and a swift arm, Pocahontas agilely grabbed his sword off of his waist, just as he went sailing out of the opposite window and to his inevitable death. While simultaneously bringing the sharp edge of the blade down on Robin's right arm, cutting it off at the elbow.

Robin cried out in pure agony and dropped his other dagger as he grabbed at what was left of his precious arm...trying to stop the blood spurts, and staggering backwards.

Pocahontas tossed the sword aside and advanced on the one armed man that was quickly going into shock. Pocahontas delivered a nasty uppercut, that loosened a few of his teeth and knocked him back against the stone wall next to the broken window.

The back of his head bounced off the wall and left him dazed as he slid down to the floor. "No...please...have mercy... I give! I surrender!" he cried, his bloody stump moving up and down. Pocahontas guessed if he still had an arm, he'd be waving her away. She smirked, too bad she wasn't fluent in speaking stump.

The Native Warrior knelt over the Merry Men leader and pulled him upright. "Your arrogance has led to your death Robin Hood. A death I will gladly deliver with my bare hands." Kill him with her bare hands she did, until her knuckles were raw and her back was hurting. When she stood, Robin's body sat against the wall, his head dangling limply...his face was badly beaten and so bloodied it was hardly recognizable. "For fucking with my family...and for throwing my bow down the stairs." Pocahontas spat on his body and took off in a sprint back to find Regina and Emma. She had a feeling who Robin had ordered to go on earlier.

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Emma was standing by the window in the throne room with her daughter who, was now fast asleep in her arms. She was watching the fight from high above...wishing somehow that she could help. She was providing as many shadow drones as she could, without wearing herself down...but the drones Snow White managed to get her hands on were tough. Not unbeatable, but tough, none-the-less.

Behind her, Regina was carefully placing each artifact into the impressive fire that Belle had created in the middle of the room. While Red stood watch at the door, and Cora and Belle chanted around the fire. Emma wasn't sure what they were saying, but judging by the thick purple smoke that was now emanating from the fire...the curse was working. They were now talking in hushed tones, but Emma still wasn't paying them any mind. She was thinking, worrying more accurately, about the new world they were soon to invade. What sort of monsters did they have? Did they have kingdoms? Were there even people there?

"Emma. Come here dear."

Emma moved away from the window and went to stand by Regina. "Is it ready?"

Regina turned to Emma and took her hand, "Almost...there is something I wish to do first before...before we leave our home Emma, I want us to be officially Queen and Queen."

Emma pulled Regina into a loose hug, careful of their twins and kissed her lover sweetly. "Who will wed us in front of this beautiful fire?"

"I will." Belle offered a grand smile, feeling incredibly honored as she stood in front of the fire, and in front of them with a long purple ribbon in her hand. She did not waste one precious moment and thus, began immediately. "Your hands please?"

Both Emma and Regina turned to face Belle and held out their right hands. "Regina and Emma, you are choosing to participate in the marriage ritual and handfasting in front of these people, your family and friends?"

"Yes we are." Emma and Regina replied simultaneously, just as their daughter cooed loudly in her sleep.

Belle stepped forward and wrapped the soft purple ribbon around their hands, joining them together,but not yet tying it. "Is it also your wish tonight that your hands be fasted in the ways of the old?"

Emma nodded, and Regina replied firmly. "It is."

Belle tied the cords around the women's interlocked hands with finality, as she recommences..."Remember then as your hands are fasted, these are not the ties that bind..." Belle took a step back, and fought the smile that was threatening to break through. Cora stood by the door with the wolf, tears in her eyes.

Belle cleared her throat softly, the purple cloud thickening behind her. "The role already taken by the song your hearts share shall be now be strengthened by the vows you take. All things of the material world eventually return to the Earth, unlike the bond and the connection your spirits share, which is destined to ascend to the heavens."

Emma and Regina looked at each other, smiling. This wasn't anything like they had planned...but as long as they had each other, it was perfect. Belle continued to speak in her tender voice, "May you be forever as one in the passion and fire of you." Regina and Emma's hands are now fully bound. "You are now, as your hearts have always known you to be, True loves. Regina and Emma Mills...you may now kiss the bride!" Belle couldn't fight the grin any longer than Cora could fight back her tears. Emma and Regina embraced, no longer as Queen and consort, but as lovers united. Red barked happily, tail wagging with excitement.

"I love you..." Emma and Regina whispered at the same time, then laughed together. Loud cooing between them caused them to look down and see that their son was now wide awake, with a wide toothless smile. "I love you too." Emma leaned down and kissed his nose and forehead.

Their moment; however, was not a moment that could have lasted forever. Red, who was still watching them with a wide wolfish grin, was taken completely by surprise when the door behind her was forced open by magic; the blast was so powerful it knocked her and Cora across the room. Emma instinctively shielded her family, including Belle, from the shards of wood that came flying their way. When the debris cleared, Regina stepped around Emma, looking at Snow and Blue with a sneer. "You're too late! We've already started the curse. So take a good look around Snow—no matter what you do, and how you do it—you'll always be one step behind me. You and that useless fairy."

"It'll never be over Regina!" Snow spat back, "Evil will never win! It never does, and I'm here to prove it."

Red was back on her feet, growling at Blue and Snow menacingly, but Cora had hit her head too hard on the pillar she slid into. Belle scampered around the Royals and went to check on Cora. Emma decided that now was the time to finalize the curse. She whistled and Apache immediately emerged from a dark corner, dragging a reluctant and fighting Henry out with him by the collar. Snow saw her son and started for him, but Red was there. Low to the ground, ready to pounce on Snow.

Snow shook her head, frowning down at the wolf. "I made a mistake saving your life..." Red snapped at Snow, and the former Queen jumped back as did her fae companion.

Emma took Henry by the collar and took a deep breath, "Say good bye Snow. Had you left well enough alone...your son wouldn't have to die tonight."

"Emma...please...no." Snow pleaded, shaking her head. Her bravado faded quickly, it was disgustingly weak. "Emma please! You don't have to do this!"

"Think of it like this, Snow..." Emma reached into Henry's back and pulled out his heart from behind, and handed it to Regina, as if it were nothing. The brightness of his heart was almost blinding. "You're giving back the happy endings you've robbed...and little Henry here is helping you." Emma pushed him away and Henry ran to his mother, but Snow knew he wasn't truly safe...not with his heart in Regina's hand.

"You kill my baby and I'll kill yours!" Snow threatened, holding Henry tight to her chest. Behind her back, Blue had poured a fist full of fairy dust into her hand...the last of her magic.

Regina smiled cruelly, holding her son tighter to her chest when he shifted. "Tell me Snow...how does it feel to finally be alone in your sad pathetic life?" Regina held Henry's heart over the fire and Henry whimpered in her arms. Snow snapped and pushed Henry behind her. She ignored Blues calls for her to stop and charged at Regina, but it was too late. The Evil Queen dropped the bright red heart of the Truest Believer into the fire and the curse rumbled, the ritual was finally completed... and it literally knocked Snow off her feet.

The cloud thickened and captured the enraged woman before she could reach the royal family. Though Emma was ready to behead her mother and be rid of her once and for all, Snow screamed in rage, vowing revenge over and over until she was no longer heard. The wind around them was getting stronger and it was whistling so loud that it was next to impossible to hear anything around them. Belle got Cora to her feet, but the older Mills was too slow and the cloud engulfed both their bodies as well, taking them into the land of the unknown.

Emma spotted something by the throne and saw that it was Ares' whistle. She quickly went to it and picked it up- Snow must have lost it when she fell. There wasn't much need for it now, but Emma pocketed it along with the purple ribbon that she still held in her possession. Maybe it could prove useful in the future.

"Emma! Look out!" Regina yelled over the howling winds, as the storm began spreading throughout the Dark Kingdom with speed, and into the Enchanted Forest.

Emma turned around and saw the Blue Fairy briefly before the former fairy threw a handful of fairy dust into Emma's eyes. Regina threw a fire ball at Blue, but the curse's winds were entirely too strong for it to stay on it's intended course, no matter how powerful it's wielder. She hadn't need worry though, because Red ran up behind the former fairy and tore out her throat from behind, right before the curse took them as well. Emma rubbed at her eyes and stepped back, miscalculating the steps and she tumbled backwards. Emma couldn't see but, she felt herself turning and in panicking efforts not to squash her newborn child, she forced herself onto her feet, but completely off-balance.

Regina's eyes widened in horror as the curse now began to wrap around her feet and slowly crawl up her body, she saw that Emma was stumbling towards the open window and she was paralyzed with fear... "No..." she whispered, "No! Emma! Emma no!" she screamed in terror, and Regina...never ever screamed and she startled their son into a fit of fussiness. "Emma!"

Emma had no idea what was happening, one minute she was stumbling on solid ground and the next there was no more ground beneath her feet. Apache, who had been successfully avoiding the strange cloud that was filling the room, charged and caught Emma's hood at the very last second and was holding on with everything he could but his hooves were slipping on the tile.

Emma held her daughter closer to her chest, and she could hear Regina screaming louder than than whistling winds of the storm. Apache grunted and pulled Emma back, walking backwards into the curse, but the blonde couldn't turn around, not without hurting their child against the sharp rocks that were digging into her back. Apache was whining for her, but she couldn't get back up. With bleary eyes, Emma looked down and saw that the curse was already spreading across the Enchanted Forest beautifully. She pulled out her dagger and fought back the tears,

"This isn't goodbye Regina." She knew the Dark Queen couldn't hear her but Emma had to say it. She knew that Regina would be devastated, as would she...but in her blackened heart...Emma knew this was not goodbye. She cut the hood of her vest and wrapped her tall body around their daughter as they plunged into the curse.

Just before they entered the land of the unknown, the real purpose of the fairy dust began to take it's desired effect and Emma slowly lost awareness. The curse had taken every being as it swept through the Enchanted Forest...it had destroyed virtually everything in it's path until their was nothing left but the ashes that was once the Enchanted Forest.

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Across the realm, in the far distance of the Enchanted Forest...

The Ice Queen stood on the balcony of her bedroom and watched with narrowed eyes as the dark purple storm cloud, that was the Evil Queen's Dark Curse, rolled towards Arendelle with a speed that was frightening, and sent chills down the beautiful blonde's spine. She clutched her urn tightly to her chest that held the remains of her family, she had waited until they were all sleeping to curse them to the urn—but it was for their own good, for this very reason. The night was the darkest it had been in a very long time—even the stars did not shine, and the Ice Queen knew that was a bad omen. The purple cloud that seemed to eat everything in it's path, was bright enough to be seen in the distance, and loud enough to be heard.

When the Ice Queen felt the unnatural breeze sweep past her, she knew it was time to leave. She pulled out a snow flake from the small pouch on the front of her desk and brought it to her mouth and gently blew. The snow flake particles flew from her hand and began to swirl in front of her like a small twister, until it dissipated and revealed a brown door.

The pensive woman took one last look at Arendelle, saying her quiet goodbyes to her home and walked through the door, and closed it firmly behind her.

A couple of minutes later...the door melted just as the Dark Curse overtook Arendelle and it's remaining residents.

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It wasn't until later that night when Madeline and Emma got home. Madeline couldn't stop talking about the movie they just went to see; Maleficent. Maleficent was actually a pretty decent movie. As both mother and daughter stepped off the elevator on the top floor of their condo building neither really noticed a small figure sitting at their door until they came right up on him. Upon closer inspection Emma saw that he was a young boy,probably a year or two younger than her daughters age. He had auburn hair that was shaggy but tidy and he was also asleep.

Emma kicked his converse covered feet gingerly until he responded. It took half a second for him to jump to his feet nervously. He had dark brown eyes and he was shorter than Maddi and he dressed as if he came straight out of a private school.

"Uh, h-hi."

Emma raised a brow, while Madeline crossed her arms; eying the boy like he had some sort of disease. "Uh, Hi?"

"Are you uh Emma? Emma Swan?"

Emma nodded warily, eyes darting around the hallway. For all she knew this kid could be bait for an ambush, suddenly the weight of her gun was comforting. "Who's asking kid?"

The young boy nodded, feeling a little more confident as straightened out his hoodie. "My name is Adam Whale, and I need your help."

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Emma paced in front of her large plasma TV with her arms crossed, and tried to wrap her mind around what this kid was telling her. She stopped and held out both her hands, "Wait wait...stop." Emma ran her hands through her blonde hair, "So what you're telling me is...you came all the way to Boston to find me just to tell me I'm a...what was it again?"

"Savior." Maddi supplied, amused; thumbs moving across her phone screen flawlessly.

Adam sighed, exasperated at both of them. "Yes!" Emma smirked, seven year old kids sound so cute when they're annoyed.

"And the Mayor of your little town is the Evil Queen and she cursed some fairy tale land to this world? And no one can leave right? And your dad is the evil Dr. Frankenstein?"

Adam nodded, smiling. "Yeah!" the he frowned, "But Frankenstein isn't my dad!"

"Ugh." Maddi rolled her eyes, crossing her arms as well as giving Adam the 'are you kidding me?' face—the face Emma received more than twice a day. "Okay, but how did you get here then genius?"

Adam returned Madeline's look but it wasn't as strong, he shrugged off his backpack and pulled out a book with brown leather covering. "The book. It keeps me safe and lets me leave town." Then Adam checked his digital Pokemon watch. "We should get going."

Madeline looked at her mom, then back to Adam. "Going...where?"

Adam smiled like it was obvious, "I want you to come home with me."

"Okay kid" Emma pulled out her work phone, flipping it open and dialing 9-1-1. "I'm calling the cops."

"Then I'll tell them you kidnapped me."

Maddi snorted, getting up to go to the kitchen to get herself some juice. "Yeah, good luck with that. Google is our witness."

Emma's thumb hovered over the call button, eye brow raised. "Google?"

Madeline pulled out a carton of orange juice and a bowl of grapes, "Yeah, Google tracks our location until I turn it off. Cops won't believe mop head when we have Google."

Emma laughed, "Never thought I'd be saying this...but thank you Google."

Adam got up, stopping a few feet from Emma looking up at her pleadingly as he offered her the book, "Please, you have to come home with me. Please. You're the savior, you have to believe me...it's in the book."

"Oh brother."

The blonde sighed, rubbing her face with both her hands. "Okay, okay. Where is home?"

"Storybrooke Maine."

"Storybrooke?" Adam nodded, looking a little too hopeful for Emma's liking. She sighed, pulling out her car keys. "Alrighty then...let's get you back to Storybrooke."

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Emma had just topped off her tank and they were on the highway leaving Boston. Adam was in the backseat and he wouldn't stop gushing about how cool his 'the saviors" car was while simultaneously coming up with ludicrous ideas about how Emma was going to break the curse and destroy the Evil Queen.

Emma scoffed, she was pretty sure the 'Evil Queen' was some harmless old lady who was stuck in the office thinking about the 'good ol' days'. Madeline however had no qualms telling Adam where to put his operation ideas and turned on the radio and the music seemed to slow down Adam's talking.

Emma noticed that the closer they got to Storybrooke the thinner traffic became until it was just them on the road and Emma was going well over ninety miles an hour. She also noticed the lack of street lights, and the heavy fog. She turned her fog lights just in case—the road that was not showing up on the GPS anymore and there was nothing but darkness and woods around them. The powerful engine and lights of her challenger was the only thing that could be heard and seen.

Madeline who had finally put down her phone, was starting to get worried. Really worried.

"Uh, mama?"

Emma held up her hand, keeping her eyes focused on the road in front of her. Her eyes were darting anywhere, as if expecting a masked man in robes to jump out from behind a tree with an RPG. Madeline knew her mother well enough to know when she was starting to freak out. She stayed quiet, but kept an eye on Emma...ready to turn the music up loud enough to bring her back.

Finally...Emma took a deep breath, spotting the 'Welcome to Storybrooke' sign. She loosened her grip on the steering wheel when town lights appeared over the horizon. The town was way bigger than expected, especially for not being on any map. Emma settled back in her seat, lowering her window to get some much needed fresh air. "I'm here, I'm okay."

"What happened?" Adam asked, startling the two in the front seat who forgot he was there...and why they just drove three hours to a town that was literally not on the map.

"Nothing kid" Emma waved him off as she downshifted, slowing down as she entered the town. "Where do you live?"

Adam shook his head, "Will you stay if I told you?"

Tired of his games, Emma pulled her car over across the street from Granny's diner and put her car in park, she turned in her seat but just as she was about to get on Adam about his games, she spotted something in the diner. Someone with a badge. "Let's go kid. Game's over." Emma shut down her engine and opened her door, ignoring Adam's attempts to get the blonde to listen to him.

Once everyone was out of her car, Madeline walked behind them as Emma gently hauled Adam to the diner. As soon as she opened the door and the bell jingled, everyone stopped what they were doing and looked towards the door. A man with dark brown hair wearing scrubs was the first to recover to the fact that there was a stranger in town and saw his son. "Oh my god Adam!" he pulled the boy into a tight hug, kissing the top of his head. "Where the hell did you run off to boy?!"

Adam pushed himself away from the man, frowning. "I went to find help, to get away from you!" all eyes went back to Emma, and Madeline hid behind her mother.

"Uh," Emma's eyes widened, and she held up her hands. "Look, he showed up at my house and I brought him back. No harm no foul. I'll just be on my way now."

Quickly Madeline backpedaled as her mother did, though the sheriff was on her heels. "Hey now wait a minute!" he ran in front of the two stopping their escape. He was rough looking man, at least 6 foot 3 with dirty brown hair and it seemed as if he was sporting a mountain man beard. Emma wouldn't be surprised if he lived in a cabin without electricity. He seemed athletic in his brown sheriffs uniform but he wasn't impressive by any means...and he didn't believe in oral hygiene.

"You can't just show up with a kid, and leave. You have some questions to answer stranger."

Emma frowned, shoving her hands in her front pockets. Aware of her daughter hiding behind her once again, and she had to force herself not to get too invested with the idea of forcing this guy to tone down his approach. "We brought him home alright? I understand it looks suspicious. But that's what happened. No need to make a big deal out of this..." Emma glanced at his name plate, "Sheriff Lochlyn."

"He is a 7 year old boy, I'm sorry but you're going to have to come down to the sheriff's station to answer a few questions."

Emma dropped her head back, sighing. "Of course." she pulled out her keys and handed them to her daughter, "Go wait in the car."

Maddi eyed the sheriff warily before taking the keys and leaving the two adults alone. Before Emma or the sheriff could speak, the diner door opened behind them and Emma heard heels coming up behind her. "Is everything alright sheriff?"

Emma turned and stopped, as did the brunette. Both women just simply stood there and stared at each other. Emma has been around plenty of beautiful woman but she's never felt the urge to pursue them for anything aside from friendship, but here she stood about five feet away from a woman slightly shorter than herself wearing a tight black dress that was professional and enticing at the same time. Emma took in the short dark hair, the high heels, the perfect hour glass figure and completely forgot where she was and why. The brunette's brown eyes trapping her in an intense stare down.

Sheriff Lochlyn cleared his throat, unaware of the ogling he just interrupted...or rather the visual reuniting Regina was enjoying. It seemed as if the older Emma became the more beautiful she became. Regina resisted the urge to pull out her wedding ring that was currently nestled between her breasts beneath the fabric of her dress on a simple silver chain. She didn't see any sort of jewelry on Emma's person and was simultaneously relieved and disappointed.

"Madam Mayor" Emma noticed his change of tone, it was a little deeper and she could hear the hankering undertone; it was disgusting. This woman was not his to yearn after, she was hers and hers only. Frowning Emma wondered where that possessive thought came from, she hardly knew this woman...for all she knew these two were fucking married. That thought alone almost made her throw up in her own mouth, but she managed not to dry heave. Barely. "I was just telling this stranger that she's gonna have to stay and answer some questions."

Emma turned to him once more, "Look. My kid is tired,and so am I. I'll stay and answer your petty questions but at least let me get some sleep."

The sheriff shook his head, "How will I know you won't just skip town?"

Emma rolled her eyes, but it was the brunette who spoke this time. "Sheriff, it's alright I can take it from here."

"But-"

"Sheriff." Regina settled her intense glare on him, and Emma raised her eyes brows impressed when the sheriff inclined his head and went back inside the diner but not before glaring at Emma one last time.

Once they were alone, the two woman stared at each other again, neither knowing what to say exactly. Emma felt as she knew this woman but she was so sure that she hasn't seen her in her life...but she wished she had; because there was just no way in hell this woman wasn't single. Emma didn't just want to look, she wanted to touch—so badly. But beautiful women like her were never single.

Shuffling nervously, Emma brought her hands out of her pockets and held out her right hand. "Emma Swan."

Regina glanced down at the calloused hand before taking it in her own, she felt the familiar scar on Emma's palm and she felt at home, she felt as if her heart had finally come home. "Mayor Regina Mills."

"Nice to meet you Mayor Mills." Emma smiled,reluctantly releasing the brunette's soft hand. Then cleared her throat politely, "Um...does Storybrooke have any hotels? Within five miles?"

"Granny's bed and breakfast is the best we have to offer, dear, it's right behind the diner."

Emma took notice of the triangle roof that was hovering over the trees and the diner and blushed slightly for not noticing it earlier. She must be really tired. "Right, thank you Mayor Mills."

Regina nodded and watched the blonde awkwardly wave goodbye before turning on her heel and crossing the street to the orange car that was rumbling across the street. She watched as the headlights flickered on—those obnoxious xenon lights—and drive away. Regina sighed, desperately wishing to go home and to just drop everything and pull her family together after all these years. She knew she had to stay to be the Mayor for a few more hours.

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