AN- Summer is still going strong, and some family issues have taken priority. I haven't forgotten about this story! More to come
Thank you again for reading, reviewing and following.
I hope you all enjoy this family centered sweet chapter. Sorry for any errors you run across, I had a horrible time editing this one.
**Warning, there is a mention of David giving the girls flowers in this chapter... It is NOT him wanting to date them. When I was little my own father, would get me flowers with every once in awhile with a small teddy bear, when I was sick, or something, sometimes just randomly because he loved me. No lovers Triangle... :) I just miss the days where I'd get flowers from my dad.. ***
"I don't know why you got four extra pairs of pajamas at that little shop" Regina commented as walked next to Snow as she pushed the cart, the grocery store suddenly seeming much bigger than she remembered it. Of course she was pint size. Thankfully Snow wasn't walking too fast so she was able to keep up pace with her and the cart.
"You girls are going through them like crazy" Snow shrugged "And I don't feel like doing laundry tonight, I just want a night, to spend with my family, to put my feet up, to play with my kids, to go to bed on time…."
"Alright' Regina held up her hands "I get that part, but you spent like forty bucks on them! Zelena is going to fix this, we don't need them that much longer."
"We'll box them up" Snow shrugged "Robin will grow faster than you think…"
Regina groaned "No, I know how fast it goes, one minute Henry was in diapers the next he's in high school, I swear I blinked."
Snow nodded with a smile "They grow fast, I am already missing newborn baby Neal, he's already grown so much."
"And Emma grew in a much faster blink of the eye for you, huh" Regina commented as she looked down at her red boots. "I am never going to make that up to you."
"its okay" Snow promised "I've forgiven you, you've got to work on forgiving yourself, Regina."
"It's hard" Regina looked up to Snow "Right now, seeing you with her at four year old size, you holding her, taking care of her… You're a great mom Snow. You are. I am very proud of you, and I am sorry I robbed you both of this, but I thank you, for letting me here with you to witness it, and receive my own version of it."
Snow gave her a wink before looking over the list "We need milk, cheese, yogurt, fresh fruit, vegetables, cheerios" Snow mused to herself "Bread, meat…."
"Pudding…" Regina added "Emma, wants pudding."
"Yes, pudding" Snow nodded "And fresh bread, which sounds good, and since both of you seem to be over, or almost over that bug, I was thinking of making lasagna for dinner tonight, do you want to help? I know you make a great one. Maybe you can give me a few pointers?"
Regina reached up and placed her hand on the cart holding onto it while they walked as her eyes lit up at the thought, of helping in the kitchen. "Yes, I'd love to help" She stopped as Snow stopped the cart to grab something off the shelf. "Are you going to make enough for Zelena too?"
Snow nodded as she now stood in front of the egg section, she grabbed a carton, checking for no cracks, once satisfied she put them in the cart. "I had planned on it, I did invite her over for meals, and now that you two are feeling better it will be much easier for all us."
Regina nodded and was about to say something when Snow's phone started to beep. She quickly dug it out of her purse and gasped slightly before groaning. "Of course, she would."
Regina raised her eyebrow "Something wrong?"
Snow held up her hand for a moment to Regina to let her know she heard her but focused on writing a quick text, before shoving her phone back in her pocket. "It looks like Emma, took a head dive off the couch, and hit the coffee table. David took her to the ER, for stitches."
Regina shook her head "Only Miss. Swan, so are we heading to the hospital?"
Snow shook her head "No, David's got it handled, they don't need me hovering, or pacing, there isn't much I could do for her right now anyway."
"She's in good hands" Regina agreed "And pacing may make her nervous."
"If it was something where I was needed, David would have asked me to come" Snow said more to herself. "However, I do want to get the shopping done quicker, and get Neal and get home. Poor Emma, she's really been through the ringer the last few days."
"To say the least" Regina agreed "But she did seem to be in better spirits this morning."
"I think she finally let go of some emotions she was holding on inside, for far too long" Snow agreed. "I know Emma, is always cautious with my feelings, she does her best to protect me, but I am her mother, I can take it and it's my job to protect her. Even if it's from herself."
The pair strolled over to the bakery, where Snow grabbed a couple of fresh loafs of bread. Before heading up to the baker's counter and grabbing a fresh baked chocolate chip cookie that they set out for kids to sample while shopping and handed it down to the little queen.
Regina's eyes lit up as she reached for the cookie "I used to always grab one of these for Henry." She smiled "He loved it."
Snow laughed "I grab these for Emma all the time, it makes shopping with her more bearable" She smirked. "Emma, hates it when I drag her shopping, but she does make a game of trying to slip junk food into the cart, and try to slip out the fresh veggies I put in."
"Do you actually let your over grown child get away with that behavior?" Regina asked with an amused smile as she could picture Emma doing that.
"The veggies, no" Snow shook her head "Those go back in, double the amount, the junk food she slips in, I let her keep."
Regina rolled her eyes "You spoil her"
Snow nodded with a small smile "It makes me happy."
Regina nibbled on the cookie that she never allowed herself to get while she was full size, since she was stuck being small, she was going to take advantage of the perks. Now she understood why Henry always had wanted these cookies. They melted in your mouth. She let out a content sigh.
Snow looked down at her and gave her a small wink before they finished the last of their shopping.
"You don't have any shoes on" David reminded Emma as they parked the truck in an old shopping center. "I can't believe I didn't think to grab your shoes…"
Emma looked down at her socked feet remembering once again there was no shoes. "Oh, yeah. I forgot. In your defense your daughter was gushing blood from her head. I could see why shoes slipped our radar." Her eyes traveled back out the window "I still want to go in."
"I am going to carry you" David warned as he quickly undid the safety restraints on her carseat.
"Yeah, I figured" Emma mumbled as she slid out of the seat and crawled to the driver door where David picked her up with ease. "Still worth it." She smiled excitedly as they headed into the only movie rental place in Storybrooke.
"There is just something magical, about wandering the isles of a video rental place, it's sad they are dying out." Emma mumbled "I mean Netflix is cool and all, but the smells and sights of the video store are like nothing else."
"I'll take your word for it, kiddo" David agreed as he headed into the video store with his daughter on his hip. Once inside Emma wiggled down and began to wander the isles in awe, which made Charming shake his head in amusement. "Alright, Emma get the movies you want."
"How many can we rent?" Emma asked "I don't have my wallet on me."
"Don't worry about it" David shook his head "Get as many as you want."
Emma whirled around and looked up at him with her jaw dropping. "Really?"
David raised his eyebrow "Is that a problem?"
"No, of course not" Emma shook her head as she began wandering the isles again looking at the familiar pictures of movies she loved. "It's just growing up, if I was lucky enough to be with a family that rented movies, it was usually we only got two, one for the adults and one for the kids, and we had to all agree. I usually never got my choice."
"Today's your day, every single movie you want, is yours." David promised "The sky is the limit."
Emma rolled her eyed "Don't be corny now" She warned as she began to pull movies off the shelf.
David followed her for a few minutes before he caught a little flower store right next to the movie store. "Hey, Em… Do you think you'd be okay in here for a few minutes, while I run out for a second?"
Emma nodded "Of course, you know I am not really four."
"I know" David agreed "Just stay in here, don't go anywhere, and don't talk to anyone you don't know, who may not know you…"
Emma wrinkled her brow in confusion. "Okay.."
"I'll be right back" He promised. "Pick your movies."
David headed out to the door, but spotted one of his and Snow's old guards running the counter. "Oh, hey Joe" He grinned.
Joe smiled "David, my man. How are you doing?"
David nodded "Great, the little blonde over there, is Emma…"
Joe raised his eyebrow "Isn't Emma much bigger normally?"
David laughed "Well yeah, magic mishap, she's finding some movies, and I want to run next door and buy her some flowers, can you kind of keep your eye on her, without her knowing? She's small but fully aware of her actual age."
"She's in good hands" Joe promised.
"Thank you!" David smiled "You're a good man Joe." He quickly turned and headed out of the store.
Emma wandered the isles "Joe, I can feel you watching me" She called out. "I know my dad asked you to watch me."
"Guilty, your highness" Joe laughed from the counter.
"Emma's fine" Emma shook her head. Never in her life would she be used to be calling royalty.
"Let me know if I can help you" Joe called from the counter. "Like reach movies on the top shelves."
Emma groaned "Was that a short joke?"
"No, you really are short, how are you going to reach the movies?"
Emma groaned again she hadn't thought of that. She still hadn't picked out any movies yet, she was just wandering taking in all the displays. "I suppose, you make a valid point." She agreed "I'll let you know."
It wasn't even five minutes later David came rushing back into the store to find Emma sitting on the counter next to Joe with a stack of movies almost as tall as her.
David laughed "I see you found your movies, Em"
Emma nodded "I found ones for mom and Regina, and you and me, and ones we will all love." She explained happily with a big smile.
"I'll just bag these up for you" Joe smiled to David as David handed him his credit card. "Thank you."
"Where'd you go?" Emma asked as she watched Joe bag her prized movies.
"You'll see" David winked and lifted her off the counter. Emma rested her chin on his shoulder while David. As she massaged her left temple with her little fingers.
"Tired?" David asked rubbing her back.
"Yeah, and my head is starting to hurt" She admitted "I am ready to go home, and eat something and maybe even take a nap." She rubbed her eyes tiredly "Will mom be home?"
"She should be" David nodded "She was just picking up Neal when I got her last message."
"Here you go" Joe handed David the bag of movies after handing him his card back. "Enjoy your movie night."
"Bye Joe," Emma waved tiredly over David's shoulder as she was being carried out of the store.
"Have a good evening with your family your highness. Hope you're feeling better soon."
Emma groaned at the your highnesses remark but found herself smiling in spite of the annoyance. "Thank you."
Emma let out an audible gasp as they arrived to the truck and she found a small bouquet of flowers with a little white teddy bear sitting in her car seat.
"Dad, are those for me?" She asked as David slid her into the cab of the truck while she crawled next to the seat reaching out and touching the flowers. She spotted a brown bag with what looked to be some more flowers on the other side, which she was guessing was for her mom.
David winked "All yours princess"
Emma turned to him with a touched smile on her face. "You got me flowers?"
"You went to the hospital" David nodded "My girl deserves some flowers for being brave, feel better soon!"
Tears began to roll down Emma's cheeks as she turned to David wrapping her arms around him tightly. "Nobody has ever bought me get well flowers before. Thank you! I love them."
"I love you" David cradled the back of her head as he held onto her. His own eyes filling with tears as he swallowed back a lump. His girl deserved a lifetime of flowers. His heart broke for all the missed time.
"I love you, too. Dad" She sniffed before pulling away and wiping her eyes. "Did you get mom, flowers too?" She asked as she crawled back to her seat lifting her flowers and bear out and putting them to the side so she could get buckled in.
David helped her and placed a kiss onto her forehead once she was buckled. "I did, and Regina too."
Emma's eyes lit up even more. "I see why mom calls you Prince Charming."
David tapped her nose. "I am one blessed guy, I've got some very wonderful women in my life."
Emma rested her head on the side of her carseat while her little fingers ran over the white bears soft fur as they headed home. Her head hurt, her body was still aching, she was more tired than she could remember, but none of that seemed to matter right now. There were no words to explain what she was feeling at the very moment.
"Oh" Snow gasped at seeing the blood soaked towel on the counter. "My word, it looks like a blood bath happened in here. My poor baby."
"She'd kill you, if she heard you say that." Regina's voice called out from behind Snow.
"Nothing I can't fix, darling" Zelena assured her as she followed Snow into the loft holding Neal and Robin's car seats while Regina trailed behind them holding one bag of groceries that she insisted she carry, after all she was shrunken not broken.
Snow had invited Zelena and Robin over for a quiet day around the house. It had been decided all around that everyone needed some down time and rest. One day taking a break from Zelena working on the fix for this mishap wasn't going to hurt anyone. Emma and Regina were both physically safe at the moment, and everyone's spirits were in need of some good old fashioned down time, and family time, and that's exactly what they were.. Sister's, mother's, stepmothers, father's aunts and so much more... It was complicated connections but one family.
"Gross" Regina crinkled her nose at the sight of blood as she stood on her tiptoes to try and push the bag up onto the counter.
"I'll take care of it" Zelena assured her once the infant seats were down. She quickly waved her hand at the towel and the counter and the traces of blood were gone just like that, and one more wave of the hand all off Snow's groceries were inside on the counter, including the one Regina had been struggling to push up.
Snow let out a happy gasp. "Zelena, you're a life saver… Thank you!"
"Those are words, I never thought I'd hear you say" Zelena admitted with a laugh as she freed Neal from his carseat and let him down to toddle around. While Snow bent down briefly to catch the toddling toddler long enough to kiss his round little cheeks before she let him run free.
Robin was sound asleep in her seat so she just moved her seat out of the way of the toddling Neal.
"Honey, we're home" David announced a second later as the door flew open and David came in carrying Emma on his hip while he balanced movies and flowers.
"Oh, let me help" Snow rushed over and reached for Emma. "Come here, my dare devil, let me see you."
Emma gave zero protest to her mother taking her from her father.
Snow winced as she began trying to see around the bandage. "Oh, I am sorry sweetheart that looks like it hurts."
"I am okay" Emma promised "Mostly, I've got a bit of headache." She admitted "Can I have something to eat and some Tylenol?"
Snow nodded "Of course, honey." She knew Emma was not feeling well if she was asking for help.
"Dad and I stopped at a video store" She whispered to Snow as her mother carried her towards the kitchen setting her down on the counter. "I got movies...Lots of them…"
"Oh" Snow's eyes got wider "You did, did you? What are we going to do with a lot of movies?" She asked as she carefully moved blood crusted hair out of Emma's face. To get a better look under the bandage.
"Can you help me with that later? It's kind of gross" Emma asked about the hair before going back to the movie topic "And we're going to watch them all, duh… Don't worry I got you some cheesy chick flicks to watch, so I can take that nap you've been making me take, of course.."
Snow laughed and rolled her eyes at the same time. "Thanks Emma."
"Zelena, I didn't know you'd be here" Charming gave her an apologetic smile "I am sorry. Had I known, I'd have gotten you some too." He said softy as he knelt in front of Regina and held out a small bouquet of flowers with a brown teddy bear.
Regina's eyes got wide in shock. "Are these for me?" she asked in bewilderment.
David winked "For you…"
"But why?" Regina asked taking the flowers before cradling them in her arms as if they were a precious baby.
"You've been sick" David reminded her. "And a real trooper this week. Why not? Don't you deserve a little something special every once in a while?"
"Get well flowers" Emma called from the counter. "He got me some too" She pointed where David had placed hers on the counter next to her."
"And my beautiful wife, just because." David smiled as he handed Snow a bigger bouquet.
"Oh, David" Snow smiled as she took the flowers "They are beautiful" She grabbed a vase to put them in before she looked over at her daughter "You keep your paws off these flowers, understood?" She added with a wink.
David Zelena and Regina all exchanged confused glances while Emma burst out laughing. "Don't worry, mom. My floral abuse days over. Besides I've got my own." She pointed proudly to her flowers. "See, mine! All mine!"
"I see sweetheart, they are beautiful." As she looked between the three bouquets in her house. Hers and Emma's on the counter and Regina's still in her little arms. Each bouquet different, different flowers, different shades of colors and very well suited for each one of them. David's eye was impeccable. Snow smiled as she grabbed two more vases for Regina's and Emma's flowers. "How about we get your flowers into some water? Before they die. I'd hate to see them die so soon."
Emma nodded quickly and handed Snow her flowers but tucked the bear close to her side without actually holding onto it.
"Zelena, I am sorry" David said stepping out of the way of toddling son. "I really wish I had some flowers for you too, you've been such a help."
"Don't be sorry" She held up her hands as she pointed to her sister who had climbed up onto the couch and was just holding her flowers in one arm with the soft brown bear in her other arms, as her eyes were locked on the flowers, with a small smile on her face as she studied them. It was like she was trying to study them so hard, she'd have a forever visual.
"Seeing that" Zelena whispered to David "Means, everything to me. Look at the joy you just brought her."
David couldn't help smile as he watched Regina finger the flowers. "She deserves them, she's pretty special to this family."
"Regina, Zelena and I are going to make a lasagna for dinner tonight." Snow called "Does anyone object some sandwiches right now?" Snow called as she was already making Emma a sandwich while her daughter was downing a pudding cup. "Maybe popcorn during the movies?"
"Let me help you" Zelena offered as she came into the kitchen "This is your rest day too, and you were up all night." She reminded her as she watched Snow gracefully flutter around the kitchen. She placed a plate next to where Emma is still sitting on the counter before she placed two grape Tylenol tablets on the plate "Eat your sandwich, take these when you're done." Snow instructed "And right to the couch after, you barley holding your head up."
Emma gave a nod while Zelena moved in front of her. "I could heal it for you..."
Emma crinkled her nose as she shook her head. "Thank you, but no thank you, the less magic used right now the better. All magic comes with a price, and I am still paying a big price, I'd hate to see what more I'd have to pay."
"Fair, little Savior" Zelena nodded as Regina came into the kitchen with her flowers, holding them still as if they were delicate gift "Snow, can you put mine in a vase too please? I don't want them to die."
Snow smiled and paused making the sandwiches to take Regina's flowers from her to put them in a vase she already had prepared, while Regina climbed up onto the barstool and reached for the vase once her flowers were inside. She pulled them directly in front of her and rested her chin in hands as she gazed at the flowers with a smile on her face.
"They are, pretty darling" Zelena commented standing behind as she rested her hand on Regina's small shoulders.
Regina didn't bother looking away as she nodded "The prettiest... I love them... I haven't really been given flowers by someone who wasn't trying to win me over, feared me, or wanted to buy my attention…Never just because." She added the last part much quieter.
Snow turned to find David to see him sitting on the ground stacking soft blocks with Neal, the two exchanged a smile as David had caught what she said. He'd never realized how much buying flowers for Emma and Regina would be so meaningful. There was going to be a whole lot more flower buying in his life. He'd give anything to see those smiles again.
"I am done eating" Emma announced as she jumped from the counter to the ground, causing Snow to gasp and reach for her… "Emma, be careful, the last thing we need is a broken bone today."
Emma gave her a smile with a shrug "I had my landing under control, can you turn on one of your cheesy girls movie now?" She asked with a yawn. "I am so ready for a nap."
"Of course, sweetheart, go get yourself comfortable." She smiled as she passed out plates with sandwiches, chips and carrots to rest of her family, before slipping onto the couch with Emma, who instantly curled up to Snow's side. David pulled out a smaller love seat from their room, before capturing Neal to lay him down for his nap.
Zelena and Regina curled up onto the love seat, happily holding their plates munching away at Snow's egg salad sandwiches. "So movies, are the moving screens on the box thing, and why do they say this world doesn't have magic? That seems magical"
Regina rolled her eyes "It's just technology, dear. Nothing magical about that."
"Don't listen to her" Emma said tiredly as she reached up behind her to pull down the throw, which her mother balanced her plate with one hand and used her other to help guide it down and tucking it around her.
"You're going to think some of the movies, I picked out today, straight out magical, just don't judge it from this one" She laughed "It's a chick flick."
"A what?" Zelena asked as David joined them again sliding in at the end of the couch his wife and daughter were occupying. He smiled as Emma stretched out her legs over his lap. David's lunch sat untouched on the coffee table,, instead he found himself, holding his daughter's very little foot in his hand, as he used his thumb to rub circles into the arch of her foot, getting a content little sigh from the girl. His lunch could wait. This moment would only last a few moments, but the memory would last a life time.
"What Emma is referring to, is the movie, that we are watching first, is targeted towards females, and have heart felt storylines, not shoot them up, blood and guts and things blowing up kind of storyline." Regina explained to her sister. "They are movies that actually have a point, to their story."
"Action movies have a point…and a real plot, not some gushy love crap." Emma grumbled "Plus you can't fall asleep watching them, there is never a dull second."
Regina rolled her eyes "Whatever you say, Ms. Swan, whatever you say."
Zelena looked more confused now which caused Snow to laugh. "Zelena, don't listen to either one of them, you'll watch the movies, today and you can make your own opinion on what is good, it really is the magical thing about movies, they speak to the viewer differently, the great part is, we get to watch them together as a family, which will make each movie special. You'll see."