"Are you kidding me?" Emma shouted, coloured with disbelief. "How is that not going to have consequences?"
"He was asking for it," Killian replied calmly, briefly admiring his handiwork. "And like I said, he'll blame the rum. Now, let's get out of here."
Emma paused for a moment to look at the passed out pirate on the floor.
As much as she had appreciated her Killian intervening, as the issue of reuniting her parents had become even more crucial, this Killian proved to be a more welcome distraction. Though it was slightly uncomfortable having an audience watching them, she couldn't deny the invisible pull she felt for the man when the familiar set of lips pressed against hers once more. Or technically, for the first time.
As quickly as the moment came, it passed within the same instant. Emma pulled herself out of her reverie and climbed up onto the deck, then out towards the forest, ignoring a distressed Smee muttering about vests. If she and Killian couldn't right her mistake soon, it could have irreversible effects on the future. It would be pretty hard to be a saviour if you would have never been born.
"You have to drink the potion," Emma pleaded through her tears as her body was pulled towards the cold, swirling vortex. "You have to forget everything I just told you."
Emma knew that she could never forget the look in Rumple's eyes the moment before he let her go; the loss of a child. His son. It was the son that he had been desperately seeking in order to make amends, and in that point of time, the only thing that was pushing him to carry on in that realm. His love for him was so strong that he was willing to help the Dark Curse be enacted, just to have the chance of reuniting with the one whom he had wronged so many times. It reminded Emma of when she first met Henry.
She had tried to reason with herself, a countless number of times since their first few months together, that fairytales were just that; make believe stories. Henry was right all along about the people of Storybrooke. They were all from a different land. Emma didn't blame herself for not believing him at first. After all, who would believe a ten year old if he told you that Snow White and the seven dwarves really exist? No, she blamed herself for thinking he was crazy, a troubled child, whatever they wanted to label it as. At first, she just went along with it, thinking she could help him out of some phase he was having.
Although Emma could have spent an age dwelling upon moments of the past, a more urgent issue suddenly consumed her thoughts.
The portal pulled her through at such an immense speed that she couldn't help but to keep her eyes shut. The rumbling sound assaulted her ears. All she could do was grit her teeth and hope for it to be over soon. She wasn't one for making a fuss over her appearance, but she could already imagine the hellish time that these winds would cause for her hair later.
After what felt like hours of fear and falling, much unlike the first time Emma had been dragged into another dimension, Emma's journey finally came to an abrupt halt. Oddly enough, she was in a sitting, upright position.
"Holy crap," Emma grumbled, pinching the bridge of her nose. "Let's agree to never go back in time again, okay? It gives me an awful migraine."
Emma slowly blinked her eyes open and frowned as she took in her surroundings. She'd expected the portal to take her back to the time and place where she had disappeared, as if she and Killian had never left Storybrooke to begin with, but this wasn't the barn. Heck, this wasn't even Storybrooke. The unusually modern furniture and view of the New York City skyline was a dead giveaway that this was her old apartment.
Confused, Emma stared at the cupcake sitting on the kitchen surface directly in front of her. A star-shaped candle was placed in the swirled frosting. Wisps of smoke dance from the small flame as the wax begins to drip.
"A cupcake," Emma mumbled, "I haven't had one of those since—"
As soon as the thought had crossed her mind, she looked down at herself. Her hair was noticeably shorter, and a lot curlier than it usually is. She modelled a pink dress fitted down to her knees, restricting her movement. She was dressed as though she was meeting with one of her old clients.
Her clutch. It would have her phone in.
She snatched it up from the counter and emptied the contents onto it. Luckily, she has a preceding reputation of packing lightly, so her cell was found within seconds. After confirming her suspicions, she quickly changed into her trademark red leather jacket and jeans. As soon as she had, she raced back towards the nearly burnt out candle. While briefly closing her eyes, she blew out the flame.
Even though she was half expecting it, a part of Emma was still in disbelief when she heard the doorbell ring. She had been hoping that she had been making some mistake.
"Kid," she breathed, examining the cherub-faced Henry. "You're a kid."
Henry frowned as he looked up at her. "Yes, I am just a kid, but I was hoping that you could help me with something."
Emma gaped as he let himself into the apartment with an oversized backpack on. The last time she had seen it on him; he was a foot taller with a deeper voice. At the moment, it looked a little comical on him.
"My name is Henry," he started, "and I have—"
"Kid, I know who you are," Emma interrupted, finally closing the front door and kneeling down in front of him. "And I know why you're here."
"You do?" Henry's face dropped. "How did you find out? Was it my mom?"
Before she opened her mouth to speak, Emma paused to quickly reflect on what she knew herself before bringing her son into it.
She didn't know how she was transported back here, or why. Emma was supposed to arrive back at Storybrooke with Killian, in a barn, surrounded by a bunch of weird symbols that first started the whole time travelling business. All she knew was that in one minute, she was going through a portal with Killian and the woman they had saved, and the next, she was back to celebrating her not-so-lonely 28th birthday.
Another thing that began bothering Emma was that if she was here with all of her memories of the next few years, than where were the woman and Killian? Were they in this timeline? If so, then did they still have their memories? There were so many questions that Emma didn't even know how to start to answer. It was hard just for her to believe that this was actually happening, let alone trying to convince Henry that it was.
Then again, the kid had travelled to New York because his Grandma Snow gave him that storybook.
"If you wanted a staring contest, I don't think you know the rules," Henry said slowly, "because you're not supposed to just start without telling the other person."
"Sorry," Emma mumbled. She couldn't think about the missing links or companions right now, not when there were more urgent matters at hand. "Henry, there's something I need to tell you."
He frowned. "What is it?"
"I know that I'm your real mom, and that you stole Mary Margaret's credit card to get here. But there's something else," Emma hastily added, noticing the flash of disappointment in Henry's eyes. She wanted to get this over with quickly so that she could begin thinking of her next move, or of an explanation that would clarify why she ended up back here. Henry was the truest believer, and a pretty smart kid. He might know what to do, right? "I know about the book in your backpack, and that you think all of the stories in it are true: Mary Margaret being Snow White; Mr. Gold being Rumplestiltskin; Regina – your other mom – being the Evil Queen; and me, your birth mom, being the saviour. All of it is true, kid."
"I knew it!" Henry exclaimed, a smile spreading across his rosy face. "I knew I wasn't crazy!"
Emma couldn't help but smile with him. "Definitely not crazy. Although, you may become a criminal if you continue stealing credit cards."
"I'll return it. She probably won't mind," said Henry. "How do you know all of this?"
Emma stood up and grabbed her car keys from the side-table. "I'll tell you on the way back home. If I remember correctly, someone's going to be very anxious for your safety."