Author: Bronzey PM
Begins a few minutes before the end of season 1. Henry is lost in Wonderland. Emma and Regina must work together to find him.Rated: Fiction T - English - Romance/Adventure - Emma S. & The Evil Queen/Regina M. - Chapters: 6 - Words: 12,216 - Reviews: 33 - Favs: 23 - Follows: 53 - Updated: 07-16-12 - Published: 06-14-12 - id: 8218535
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
Author's Note: Sorry this chapter was so slow coming out, I had a crazy week and then stumbled into a bit of writer's block. I think I'm past it now. :) Hope you like the story!
"You son of a bitch!" Regina howled and lunged for Gold. Before she was able to reach him, he blinked out of existence only to appear again under a nearby tree.
"There's no need to get excited, Your Majesty." He straightened his jacket and raised a finger in warning. "I expect you'll need an even temper if you wish to ever find your son"
Regina growled and took off toward Gold again.
"What the hell is going on?" Emma demanded. "What do you mean Henry's in Wonderland?"
Gold lazily raised one hand and Regina flew backwards several feet. Emma sprinted forward and caught her just before she crashed to the ground.
"What is it that you don't understand, Miss Swan? Hmm? The part about Henry being in Wonderland. Or... " Gold laughed softly to himself. "Oh, dear. Don't tell me you've never heard of Wonderland. You do know how to read, don't you?"
"Of course." Emma rolled her eyes impatiently. "Of course I've heard of it, but..."
"And you've met Jefferson, have you not? I assume he told you a bit about his lovely former home. He and that place seem to have been made for each other." He turned to Regina. "Don't you think so, Your Highness?"
"Son of a bitch!" Regina spit out again. She attempted to lunge toward Gold again, but this time Emma grabbed her from behind and held her back.
"How did he get to Wonderland?" demanded Emma around the struggling mayor. "I was only away from him for a few minutes. There was no way..."
"There's always a way, Miss Swan."
"Just as there would be way for me to rip your heart from your chest," Regina growled. "If only you had one."
"You should be grateful I'm here at all, Regina." His voice abruptly took on a menacing tone. "I could have let you wallow in grief, never knowing if he was alive or dead." His anger was so palpable, so fierce, it seemed to swirl behind his eyes. "But that's more your style than mine, isn't it?"
"I regret nothing," Regina replied, disgust filling her voice. "You're a heartless wretch who deserves nothing. Nothing but your own wretched life." She wildly kicked a foot in Gold's direction. "Nothing!"
He sighed dramatically and touched his chest. "You hurt me, my dear."
"You already have what you wanted, Rumpelstiltskin." She grimaced at the feel of his name on her tongue. "I owe you. Now tell me how to find Henry, or get the hell off my lawn."
"A little birdie told me the White Rabbit knows a little something about Wonderland," Gold replied, his eyes never leaving Regina's. "Perhaps you should talk to him about it."
"You know that's impossible!"
"Anything's possible, Your Majesty," he said sharply and leaned forward. "You know that more than anyone. Now, ladies, I really must bid you farewell. I have someone waiting for me." He laughed impishly and snapped his fingers. A puff of smoke appeared, and he was gone.
"You can let go of me now, Miss Swan," Regina said angrily after several moments passed and Emma was still holding onto her with the desperate grasp of a frightened child. "Unless, of course, your intention is to permanently cut off the circulation in my arms?"
Emma instantly loosened her grasp and took a step back. "I'm sorry. I didn't..."
"What you didn't do is of absolutely no consequence, Miss Swan. What you will do is drive me to the hospital."
Regina marched off to the squad car and began getting in when she noticed Emma standing there, staring blankly at the spot Gold had last stood. She angrily thumped the roof of the car with her fist to get the other woman's attention.
Emma swiveled her head toward the sound. Suddenly, the shock of the situation faded and she felt a rush of anger and worry.
"Henry's not at the hospital. I told you; he wasn't in his bed. What are we going to do? Why would Gold do something like this?"
"Obviously, he's not at the hospital, Miss Swan. You really are so very frustrating," Regina said, her voice filled with aggravation. "Get in the car. Now."
"No!" Regina thumped the roof again, unconcerned with small dent she left behind. "We don't have the luxury of standing here all day while you try to wrap your tiny brain around the situation. Henry's in danger, and I can't save him alone, so you're coming with me. That's all you need to know right now. Just get in the goddamn car!"
Emma shrugged dramatically. "Fine." She held up a finger. "But I expect an explanation on the way."
Once they were on the road, Emma glanced over at Regina. Her brow was furrowed, and her arms were wrapped tightly around her midsection.
"Keep your eyes on the road, Miss Swan," she muttered, eyes never leaving the road ahead of them.
"Explain to me why we're going to the hospital."
"We need to see the White Rabbit." Regina ran a hand through her hair and sighed.
"Why is there a rabbit at the hospital?"
"He's not actually a rabbit. He's a man, but..." she paused and made a small gesture with her hand, as if rationalizing it to herself as well, "he's also a rabbit."
"No! Of course not, Regina. What the hell? There's a rabbit at the hospital who is a man but also a rabbit and he's actually the White Rabbit from the Alice in Wonderland stories."
"The White Rabbit is from Wonderland. It's a world that existed long before and has existed long after that foolish Alice girl blundered down the rabbit hole."
"How is he a man, but also a rabbit?"
"The White Rabbit was..." Regina released a labored breath as she tried to think of the right word. "Born, I suppose you could say, in Wonderland. The rabbit hole..." She shifted in her seat uncomfortably. "It moves now. It's impossible to know where it is at any given time. The White Rabbit is the only one in our world who can show us where it is."
"And I'm guessing that we'll need to go down the rabbit hole to find Henry," Emma said with a sense of foreboding.
"I'm impressed by your powers of deduction, Miss Swan," Regina said, but couldn't muster up much bite to her words.
"What about Jefferson? Doesn't his hat get you into Wonderland, or whatever?" Emma shook her head in a physical attempt to shut up the little voice in her head that was insisting she'd lost her mind.
"Jefferson's hat brings you to the Looking Glass, but the Queen of Hearts monitors that entrance. We'd have less than an hour before her guards captured us."
"Doesn't the Evil Queen trump the Queen of Hearts?" Emma asked with a small smile.
Regina looked at Emma for the first time since they got in the car. "If you think I'm evil, you haven't even started to understand what evil is."
"I only know what I've heard. I mean, there was a lynch mob at your house. I'm pretty sure you're no saint."
"Neither are you," she responded defensively.
"I never said I was, but I don't have a whole town that wants me dead."
"First of all, half the things these people believe are highly exaggerated or misunderstood. Second, these people are from Fairytale Land. A world where everyone's story ends with, 'And they lived happily ever after.' And now they're in America, the land of the free, in a town with no crime, no litter, a mayor who cares..." Regina folded her arms. "If you ask me, they're a bunch of selfish brats."
"I think there might be a few flaws in your logic," Emma said with a small, disbelieving laugh.
"Perhaps." She folded her arms tighter. "But it's not like they're living in a hell world like Wonderland."
"Whoa, whoa, whoa," Emma said as they pulled to a stop in the parking lot of the hospital. Regina began fumbling with the door latch.
"Open this door right now, Miss Swan."
"You never said Wonderland was a hell world. Henry's in a hell world?" Her words became frantic. "What does that even mean?"
"It means that the Queen of Hearts has poisoned her world. During her reign, Wonderland has evolved... or I guess I should say, devolved, into pure madness. Everyone and everything there is mad. Far more mad than anything you ever read about it your silly little Alice books. Most are harmless, but there are some, the ones closest to the queen, who are violent and horrible. We need to get to Henry before the Queen of Hearts' minions find him. If she finds him..." Regina's voice trailed off.
Emma unlocked the door. "Damnit, Regina. Why didn't you say so? Get out of the car!"
Regina emerged from the car and thumped her fist on the roof again, attempting to funnel all of her frustration at Emma through her fist. "At least I don't have to worry about Wonderland driving me mad, you've already taken on the task quite competently."
Emma shook her head and grabbed Regina's arm. She pushed her toward the hospital's door. Regina muttered something about manhandling, but Emma ignored her. "At least I won't have a lot of work to do. You're already pretty insane if you ask me."
They passed through the doors. Regina flew down the hallways with Emma hot on her trail. "Oh, that's rich coming from you."
"What do you mean? I'm not insane."
Regina glanced over her shoulder. "If you say so, Miss Swan."
"I'm not!" Emma protested as Regina stopped at a door secured by a keypad lock. She punched in a sequence of numbers, and the door clicked open. As they passed through the door, Regina raised a finger to her lips. Emma nodded. The argument over their relative insanities was quietly forgotten.
They moved slowly down the stairs. Emma wasn't sure why they were being cautious, but the worried look on Regina's normally stoic face was enough scare the crap out of her.
When they reached the nurse's station, Regina held up a hand. Emma stopped and watched as Regina tip-toed around an unconscious nurse and grabbed a small silver key. Regina seemed to relax once she had the key, and she hurried on. Emma followed her down the corridor.
After passing several silent doors, they came upon an intersection in the hallway. Once again, Regina held up a hand and Emma paused. She took a breath to brace herself and stepped into the intersection. She raised bother her hands and Emma watched as bright, crackling waves of what looked like electricity emanated from her palms in both directions.
"Regina!" Emma said and ran forward to grab Regina as she fell to her knees. "What the hell was that?"
An out-of-breath Regina attempted to make her tone as condescending as possible. "If you'd use your eyes, Miss Swan." She swallowed and gasped for a breath. "You'd see I cleared the way for us."
Emma looked to the right. A large, shirtless man lay limply on the ground. Her mouth fell open and she swiveled her head to the left. Another large man with long brown hair lay limply in much the same manner.
"How did you know?"
"I trained them. They were my guards."
"Not very loyal guards." Emma muttered as she looked down at Regina who was still leaning against her. "Are you okay?"
"I'm fine." Regina struggled to sit up, but Emma's arms held her back. "I would appreciate it if you would let me go, Miss Swan. I'm starting to think you're doing this on purpose."
"You wish," Emma muttered and shoved Regina away. "Excuse me for trying to help."
Regina stood and brushed off the sleeves of her jacket. "Thank you for your help." She said curtly. "I'm not used to the type of magic Gold released. I can't control it very well."
Regina led them down the left corridor. As they passed, Emma poked the unconscious man with her foot. "Is he going to..."
"He'll be fine. And I'm afraid it will be sooner rather than later. Let's go. We're almost there."
When they entered the White Rabbit's cell, Emma saw a middle-aged man with stark white hair and pale skin. At the sight of the two women, he hopped onto his bed and huddled in the corner.
"What's wrong with him? He's shaking like a leaf," Emma said softly.
Regina closed her eyes for a brief moment and took a deep breath.
"Hello, Henry," she said gently as she moved into the room, toward the man on the bed. He redoubled his efforts to get as far into the corner as possible. "I'm not here to hurt you. I promise." He shook his head wildly and swatted at the air in front of him. Despite his wild movements, he remained silent. Emma couldn't even hear his breathing.
"I'm so sorry for this, Henry. I never meant to hurt you." She knelt on one knee beside the bed before she continued. "You know I didn't mean for things to end up this way. Can you ever forgive me?"
The man's body relaxed a bit, and he tilted his head. Regina peered at him with a cautiously hopeful look in her eye.
Suddenly, his eyes grew hard, and he raised his lip in disgust. He clearly mouthed the word "never" and swiftly hopped off the bed. He escaped the room before either woman was able to stop him.
"Follow him!" Regina barked as she scrambled to her feet. Emma instantly took off running.
Author's Note: You're probably confused right now. Don't worry, I'll explain most things in the next bit.