A/N: Written for an anon prompt on tumblr of "Captain Swan + Seeking Solace"
Emma shoved open her apartment door and walked straight over to the table where she'd left her drink. Without pausing for a breath first, she lifted the glass to her lips and downed the whole thing. It formed a warm lump in her stomach — a nice, physical sensation to accompany all of the emotional knots currently residing there.
Her glass thunked hard against the table when she slammed it down.
He couldn't give her a goddamn moment?
Her entire life had been turned upside down in one afternoon, her past revealed to be nothing more than a dream, and her actual life something that any rational person would peg as a mad delusion. She knew that it was all true… that she was the daughter of Snow White and Prince Charming, the Savior, and that the man standing behind her right now was Captain Hook. But while her heart believed it, her head was having a hard time rationalizing it.
How could that be her life?
Dragons, giants, curses, and Peter Pan?
How could that be the truth when set against the everything else she remembered? Henry and work and school.
And Walsh… Who had just transformed into a flying monkey and tried to kill her.
Emma blew out a long sigh. This was going to require another drink.
Hook appeared at her elbow and refilled her glass without saying anything at all.
Emma glanced at him, not sure whether to feel soothed or irritated by the fact that he'd known what she'd needed without her asking. He'd always understood her better than anyone else. Sometimes she found comfort in it, but there were other times — like now — where the affinity between them threw into sharp focus the fact that she was a whole lot less normal than she liked to pretend.
"Drink up, love," Hook prompted her.
Is rum your solution to everything?
Shoulders sagging, she lifted the glass and took a slow sip.
Hook drew his fingers across the top of the chair he'd been sitting in earlier. "Would you prefer to be alone?"
She'd answered reflexively without really considering the question. But based on the relief that she felt now that she'd essentially asked him to stay, she supposed that she'd answered truthfully.
It was hard to filter her thoughts with everything in her mind in such a sorry state of upheaval.
"Here," she said with a wave toward the couch. "Just…sit with me."
His boots thumped against the wood floor as he walked. The sound reminded her of the brief time they had spent on board the Jolly Roger on their way to and from Neverland. She'd been riveted by the sight of him in his element, in the place where — according to the storybooks, anyway — he belonged. At the helm of a pirate ship, his long leather coat and plunging neckline and skull and dagger medallions hadn't looked like a costume. They'd looked perfectly at place. All the elements of character melted away, and she'd felt as if she were truly seeing him for the first time.
She'd liked what she saw.
Enough to impulsively pull him into a kiss in the jungle.
She blushed now to remember it. As kisses went, that one had been…
She sat down a little too close to him on the couch, but couldn't move away without signaling that his proximity affected her, so she settled back and let the exhaustion of the day take hold.
"Did he hurt you?" Hook asked, a concerned look pulling his brows together. "Walsh?"
She shook her head. "Not unless you count pretending to love me."
"Ah." He looked down at his hands. (Or…hand, she reminded herself. One of them was fake.) "Well, for what it's worth, Swan, I'm sure that required very little, if any, effort to feign."
Emma didn't know how to respond to that.
There was no social protocol for discussing your recently deceased, murderous, flying monkey ex-boyfriend with the man who you once kissed way too hard in the middle of a rescue mission to a fairy tale land and who had apparently, solely of the promise of that kiss, crossed realms and defied curses to get back to you.
Seriously. How is this my life?
Things had been so much simpler when it had been just her and Henry — no other family or towns or happy endings to be responsible for but her own.
Hook had come back for her. He'd done the impossible. He'd given her back herself. And even as her whole life fell apart, sitting next to him felt right. Like this was the place she was supposed to be, the story to which she belonged.
The urge to turn into him and accept the embrace that she knew he'd provide scared her just as much as the thought of it — of his arms tight around her and her face buried against his neck — provided a certain measure of solace.
"Emma—" he began, but she cut him off.
"Look. I don't want to talk. I just want to sit. And drink. So…you want to stay for a while?"
She leaned her head back and allowed herself to draw comfort from his steady presence. Images of their past together flitted across her mind and she didn't bother to try and filter them out. She let it all wash over her. She'd try to find herself in amongst the wreck in the morning.
Tomorrow, she'd be the Savior again. A hero, strong and brave and sure.
But tonight, she was only Emma. A woman, hurt and confused and grateful to not be alone.