Chapter Forty


November

Emma truly couldn't believe how quickly five months had gone by living in the mansion. It only seemed like yesterday that she was saying goodbye to her old house, and now she was perfectly at home here. So much had changed: Hope was nearly crawling, Ryleigh had had her first birthday party, and she and Regina had been actively trying to conceive another baby.

They'd poured over every piece of information they could get their hands on, and as far as they could tell, there was a little more than just true love and magic involved. There were cycles of elemental magic in the world that needed to be taken into consideration, and since neither of them really knew how to track those, they decided the best option was to just keep trying until it happened again.

It was more fun that way anyway.

It was a lazy afternoon in mid November, and they had the house to themselves. Henry had taken Hope out for a walk in her stroller with his grandparents and Neal, and Emma and Regina had meant to use this free time to start preparing for the Thanksgiving dinner they'd be hosting next week, but as of yet, they hadn't quite made it off the couch in the living room.

"We really should go to the grocery store," Emma pointed out from where she lay on her back, Regina's body pressed on top of her.

"Mmhmm," Regina agreed, though she made no attempt to get up, and instead leaned closer, to kiss Emma on the mouth.

"And polish the silverware," Emma continued, a teasing lilt in her voice as she broke her lips free from Regina's.

"Yes, of course," Regina agreed again, and kissed her again.

"The laundry's piling up you know," Emma continued, biting back her smile.

"We should definitely do the laundry," Regina said before kissing Emma longer and harder.

Emma raised an eyebrow when Regina stopped kissing her. "We're not going to do those things, are we?"

This time, Regina just smiled and shook her head, kissing Emma yet again.

"Didn't think so…"

"You don't sound terribly disappointed," Regina pointed out.

"Well, we've never had sex in the living room. We probably shouldn't let this opportunity go to waste."

Regina grinned and kissed her again. "Probably not."

"And the grocery store will still be there tomorrow," Emma reasoned.

"Mmhmm," Regina agreed, moving to nuzzle against Emma's neck, kissing the skin there.

All prior thoughts of everything they needed to do fled from Emma's mind as she ran her fingers through Regina's hair. Regina was gently biting at her earlobe and Emma couldn't help the moan that escaped from her throat.

It wasn't long before Regina was sitting up, her thighs on either side of Emma's hips, as she pulled her shirt over her head. Her bra was the next thing to go, and before Emma could really appreciate the view before her, Regina's fingers were grabbing at the fabric off Emma's tank top, working it up as Emma lifted her back and shoulders from the couch, allowing Regina to pull it off of her completely.

Regina let out a low growl as she realized their pants were going to be harder to remove from this position, and with a wave of her hand, she removed the rest of their clothing. Emma was used to the feeling of Regina's magic on and around her by now, but something felt more charged, more urgent and intense than it usually did.

She couldn't dwell on the change though, because Regina was kissing her collarbones fervently as the fingers of her right hand trailed their way down her torso, and over her pelvis, as Regina shimmied herself back, moving one leg and then the other until she was kneeling between Emma's thighs.

Emma felt an unfamiliar and yet familiar spark in Regina's fingers when they finally made contact with her sex. She gasped at the intensity, but Regina didn't seem to notice anything out of the ordinary.

Emma could feel time slowing down as she lost herself in the feeling, and she knew - even before the bright white flash of magic illuminated the room - exactly what was happening. She knew the unique feel of Regina's magic by now, and she felt the surge as it entered her threw Regina's fingers, filling her so full she thought she might burst. Her eyes snapped open as she came, just in time to see that telltale white flash she'd seen that very first time.

Her eyes met Regina's after a few moments, and even in her post-orgasm bliss, she couldn't miss the surprise on Regina's face.

"Did that… just…" Regina stammed.

And Emma grinned as she closed her eyes again. "Yeah."


Thanksgiving

By the time Thanksgiving rolled around, Emma knew. She hadn't needed a pregnancy test to confirm, as the magic sickness had set in almost immediately, just as it had when she was pregnant with Hope. This time, however, she had Regina - and Regina's magic - and she was feeling healthy and alert in a way she never really had with Hope.

"Need any help?" she asked, as she stepped up behind Regina who was stirring the gravy on the stove. She slipped her arms around Regina's waist and kissed her neck before resting her head on her shoulder.

"Is this how you plan on helping?" Regina asked, and Emma could swear she could hear the raised eyebrow in her voice.

"Mmhmm," Emma hummed, nodding against Regina's shoulder. "It's Thanksgiving and I'm being thankful and, you know, showing my gratitude."

"Are you sure you didn't just want to get closer to the food before dinner?"

"Well, I am eating for two, you know. Did you get pickles?"

Regina chuckled as she set the wooden spoon down and reached back to run her fingers through Emma's hair. "Of course I did. I told you, didn't I?"

"That you were gonna be the best baby daddy ever?"

"Yes. But if you tell anyone I said that, I'll kill you."

Emma gasped in mock surprise. "You would never! You love me too much."

"You're right," Regina agreed, turning in Emma's arms so that she could face her, and give her a quick kiss on the lips. "I do. But I also hear the door."

"They can let themselves in," Emma insisted, squeezing Regina a little tighter.

Regina chuckled, and pulled herself away. "Watch the gravy," she said, handing Emma the spoon before giving her another quick peck.

"Fine," Emma sighed, smiling as she watched Regina leave the kitchen and head to the door. She turned her attention back to the gravy, giving it a lazy stir.

Ever since she'd gotten pregnant, she found it hard to be away from Regina even for a second. She could feel Regina's magic inside her all the time - she could recognize it as clear as day now, just as Mal had said she would, eventually - and it led to Regina being on her mind even more than she usually was.

She found herself in disbelief now that she'd ever managed to get through the months of pregnancy she did with Hope, without having Regina around. With Regina's magical boosts several times a day, Emma found herself full of energy and in good spirits, without any traces of sickness or dizziness. This was the bliss of magical pregnancy she'd read about in old books when she and Regina had done their research.

This was all that she'd wanted.

Emma smiled to herself as she felt Mal's and Zelena's magical essence behind her. She'd become extremely adept at recognizing individual signatures, and it was heightened now that she was pregnant. She turned, and tilted her head to the side when she found only Mal had entered the kitchen.

"What's wrong?" Mal asked, immediately noting the look of confusion on Emma's face.

Emma shook her head. "Nothing. I just thought I was getting really good at picking up magical essences. Maybe I'm not as good as I think."

"You didn't feel me?"

"No, I did. I just thought I felt Zelena, too."

Mal took a couple steps closer to Emma and smiled, and Emma could have sworn she felt Zelena's magic even stronger than before, though she could clearly hear her talking to Regina in the other room now. It took a moment, and then it hit her.

"Oh my God!" she gasped, her eyes involuntarily snapping to Mal's abdomen. "You're…"

Mal raised an eyebrow as her smile widened. "I'd say I'm in about the same condition you are."

Emma's laid a hand on her own abdomen. "You can feel her."

Mal nodded. "Just like the first time. Just like you can feel mine."

"Oh, Mal," Emma said, dropping the spoon back into the pot she'd been stirring without a second thought to how it splashed gravy onto Regina's immaculate stovetop. She quickly closed the distance between them and pulled Mal into a tight hug. "This is so amazing!"

Mal squeezed her back. "I know. You're not the only one who wanted a second shot at this, you know."

Emma nodded. She and Mal hadn't talked much about her pregnancy with Lily, but she knew enough to know it wasn't easy on her. "Does Lily know?"

Mal sighed and pulled back from Emma a bit, to look at her face. "She does. She's… less than thrilled. I was hoping maybe you could talk to her? You've been there, experiencing your mother carry a new child when she didn't raise you. You could probably relate to her best."

Emma nodded quickly. "I will."

"Thank you."

"Oh my God, did Regina realize when you came in?"

Mal shook her head. "I don't think so. Zelena was with me then, she wouldn't have realized… we were going to make the announcement tonight, once everyone was here. Unless you'd like us to wait. I don't want to steal your thunder."

"Well, my parents and Henry already know, and now you, so Zelena and Lily are the only ones left to tell, I guess."

"Well, we could do it right now then. Zelena and Regina both deserve to know they're both going to be aunties."

Emma grinned and grabbed Mal by the hand, pulling her along with her to the living room where everyone was. Her parents hadn't arrived yet, but Henry was already playing with Ryleigh on the floor and Zelena had Hope in her arms, giving her as many kisses as she could as the little one giggled and squirmed in her arms. Lily was watching Zelena with keen interest, but Emma couldn't quite tell her mood from her face.

Emma met Regina's eyes across the room, and she smiled. Soon her parents would arrive with Neal and the house would feel fuller and louder than it ever had, but still Emma could tell Regina was loving it just as much as she was.

She wasn't quite sure how to make the announcement, but luckily, Zelena beat her to the punch.

"Well, darling," she said, looking over at Mal. "What do you think? Is now a good a time as any to make our little announcement?"

"What announcement?" Regina asked.

"The same one we were going to make when they got here," Emma replied, winking at Regina.

Regina looked back and forth between Zelena and Mal for a moment, until it hit her. "You're having a baby?"

Mal smiled and nodded. "We are."

"Wait," Zelena cut in. "Are you two having a baby?"

"Yeah," Emma replied. For a moment, she wasn't sure if Zelena was going to laugh or cry, and she suddenly worried that her jealous streak would rear its ugly head once again. But instead, she turned and handing Hope to Lily, and crossed the room to give Regina a tight hug.

"Congratulations," Zelena said, quietly, but loud enough that Emma could hear.

Emma watched the complex emotions displaying on Regina's face, and she knew this was a huge breakthrough for them. As much as Regina hated to admit it, she did crave a closer relationship with her sister, and Emma couldn't help but hope this was a step in the right direction.

"So, I'm gonna have a sister and a cousin," Henry said, grinning and nodding from his place on the floor.

"Imagine what a houseful we'll have next Thanksgiving," Mal commented.

Emma's eyes met Regina's again, and they shared an unspoken moment. Neither of them had mentioned what happened last Thanksgiving at all, all month, but Emma couldn't help but marvel at how everything had come full circle.

Everything she had now: Hope, this house, her girlfriend, her son under the same roof as her every day… everything had been the result of herself and Regina getting a little too tipsy and a little too lost in each other that night. In the weeks that had followed, if anyone would have tried to tell Emma that just one year later she'd be in a home filled with family, hosting Thanksgiving dinner with the woman she loved, she'd have thought they were crazy.

And maybe they were both a little bit crazy for taking that plunge, and giving love a chance when they were both been burned before - sometimes by each other - but standing in this living room right now, Emma knew without a doubt there was no place else she'd rather be.


"This is where it all started," Emma mused. It was past eleven and everyone had gone home after a loud and hectic but ultimately successful Thanksgiving dinner. The kids were in bed and Emma was laying in Regina's arms, her head on Regina's chest.

"Hmm?" Regina hummed, as she threaded her fingers lazily through Emma's hair.

"Last Thanksgiving, in your bedroom… in your bed. That's where this whole thing started."

"It's your bedroom now too, you know," Regina reminded her.

"Yeah, I know. I'm still getting used to saying that."

"You've thinking about last Thanksgiving?"

"A little bit," Emma admitted.

"Stay."

"What?" Emma asked, turning her head to look at Regina in confusion.

"Last Thanksgiving, I told you to leave. And now I'm asking you to stay."

"I live here," Emma reminded her with a small grin. "Of course I'm going to stay. Where else would I go?"

"I don't just mean tonight, Emma. Or just for now, or just for a while… stay here, Emma, with me, forever. Live with me forever. Marry me, be my wife, love me forever. And I'll do the same for you."

"You want to get married?"

Regina nodded. "It's about time I made an honest woman out of you."

Emma's cheeky grin fell away as she realized Regina really was serious."You're the only one who could."

"I know. Emma, I love you. Marry me."

Emma sniffed back a tear threatening to fall as she moved herself up to meet Regina's lips, kissing her long and hard before breaking away to look in her eyes. "Yes."

The End


A/N: I just want to say a big thank you to everyone who went on this ride with me! This story has been a journey, and while I'm sad it's over, I'm excited for the sequel. I fully understand if some of you would like to let this story end here, but for everyone who wants more, I can't wait to embark on that next journey with you too!

Much love,

Row.