Emma woke up early the next morning, and her first thought was to relay the email she'd received from Regina the evening before.
Subject: Tomorrow Night
I've spoken with Killian's manager Robin and we've come to an agreement where we believe it'll be beneficial for all parties involved if we can get the plan up and running before you both leave to shoot in Canada.
I understand this is sooner than what you expected, but we believe that this will stir interest in the project sooner.
I've supplied Killian with your email address and contact number, so I suspect you will hear from him soon. We'll leave it up to the two of you to plan the evening.
Emma threw her phone next to her on the bed, and then pulled the cream coloured covers over her head. She was going on a 'date' with Killian Jones this evening and she knew by this time the next morning, the internet would be swirling with rumours. Emma wasn't stupid; she knew they needed to be careful about what they would do and what they would give to the world. Anyway, 'Real Life' Hollywood couples wouldn't just put out a twitter post and introduce to the world their partner. They were going to have to be smart and drip feed information slowly, and seemingly, without knowing that they were doing it.
The house was quiet, so it was easy to hear Henry's little footsteps padding across the landing. Emma quickly took her head from out beneath the covers and closed her eyes. She heard the door to her room open, and then she felt the dip of the bed as he inspected whether or not she was awake. As he got closer and closer to his seemingly sleeping mother, Emma jumped up and wrapped him in her arms, tackling him to the bed beneath her.
"Mom!" Henry squealed and laughed when she attacked him with kisses all over his face. "You scared me."
"It's what I do, Kid. I'm your mom, I'm supposed to scare you." Henry laughed and then settled in her arms. Even though he was getting older now and moments like this we're becoming rarer for the two of them, Emma made certain to appreciate every quiet, still moment with her son. When she didn't have to worry about what role she would be playing next or where in the world her job would take her. None of it mattered when she was lying in bed with her young, handsome son in her arms.
"Am I still going over to Grace's tonight for a sleepover?" Henry asked and rested his head on Emma's chest. She ran a soothing hand down his back.
"Mmmm" Emma said in a sense of reply. "It works out well because I'm going out tonight." Henry quickly shot up and started shooting her questions from every angle.
"Mom! Who are you going out with? Is it a date? What's his name? Is he famous? Do I know him? Oooo is it Killian Jones? You know I've seen one of the movie's he was in. The one where he's a pirate or something?"
"Okay no. Hang on. When did you see that film?" Emma knew that film, she knew it well. After their first meeting together at the awards show, Mary Margaret thought it would be best to have a girls night where they watched that film and made fun of him continuously. Two bottles of wine and eight tequila shots between them, not only were they giggling uncontrollably every time he appeared on the screen but had also started to yell curse words at him to vent out Emma's anger.
"When I was at Grace's last" Henry innocently replied. "Her mom was watching it and we snuck downstairs to watch it from the hallway."
"Henry." Emma scolded. "You shouldn't be watching that film. You're far too young to see it."
"You didn't answer my question." Henry replied and snuggled closer. Emma sighed and ran her fingers through his short hair.
"Yes it's Killian." Emma said. She knew she couldn't tell Henry the truth, but she didn't feel like completely lying to him either. So yes she was going on a date with Killian, but was she dating him? No she wasn't. As much as she loved Henry, and she loved him a damn lot, she knew the moment she uttered the real truth to him, he would blabber the truth to David or Mary Margaret, or possibly one of his school friends. And as much as she wished he could keep a secret, she needed this one to stay exactly that; a secret.
"That's so cool. He's like famous."
"Hey! So am I." She exclaimed and tugged him closer so that he was on top of her chest.
"Yeah but he's Killian Jones!"
"It's just a date, Henry. Nothing's happened yet." Emma replied and sighed. As much as she knew that she was lying to her son, Emma also recognised that there was an element of truth there. Killian may annoy the hell out of her tonight so much so that before the night draws to a close, she could ring Regina and call of the deal there and then.
Emma's phone beeped, indicating that there was an unread text message. As she grabbed the phone from the other side of the bed, she saw an unknown number flash onto the screen. She could guess without even opening the text who it was from. Henry got up from the bed and told her that he was going to go downstairs and watch some cartoons. After Emma had told him that she'd be down in a minute, she chucked the phone back onto the bed, ignoring the message.
Emma sat on the edge of the bed and reached onto her nightstand where there were two hair ties. She pulled her golden locks back into a high ponytail, before standing up and making her way to her en-suite bathroom. Emma washed and moisturised her face before coming back into her bedroom, and pulling on an oversized jumper. She turned her attention back towards the phone that was lying face down on her bed.
Should she? Yes she should. She was ignoring the inevitable, but knowing this didn't settle the butterflies that had settled in her stomach as she sat down on the bed, reached for her phone and unlocked it.
UNKNOWN NUMBER: Good morning, Swan. I hope I haven't disturbed you this fine morning.
EMMA: You haven't disturbed me at all Jones.
KILLIAN: So you weren't dreaming about me last night? Cocky bastard.
EMMA: What do you want?
Emma knew exactly what he wanted. He no doubt had received a similar sort of email from Robin regarding their activities tonight. Moments later, his name flashed on the screen again.
KILLIAN: I guess you'll have to answer that question tonight, love.
KILLIAN: You know, when we go on our date. Anyway, I hope you'll graciously except that you let me plan the evening.
EMMA: I know how to plan a date.
KILLIAN: You know how to chase a monster when your on a film set. I know how to plan an evening out.
Emma ignored that last text and stuffed her phone into her sweater pocket. She opened the door leading out to the landing and then walked down the wooden stairs. Before she went into the kitchen to start breakfast, she peaked into the living room to check on Henry. His feet were up on the sofa and his thumb was in his mouth, a habit she's never been able to break him out of. The remnants of the den building with David the day before had been tidied away and Henry was the image of content watching Spongebob in his Spider-Man pyjamas.
"Is pancakes okay for breakfast this morning kid?" She asked as she made her way down the corridor towards the kitchen.
"Yep." Henry replied and then his attention turned back towards the television.
Emma smiled to herself and then walked into the kitchen. She flicked the coffee machine on before she grabbed the ingredients she needed out of the cupboard and the fridge, before bending down to the lower cupboards to get a mixing bowl and an electric mixer. Sunday morning pancakes had become a bit of a tradition in the Swan household. When Emma was a child, she spent 6 months with the 'Swan Family' where she got her surname from. That was until they'd got pregnant and then sent her back to the group home, as they couldn't afford more than one child. Then Sunday's became a lot more sombre in the group home when she sat there at the weekends, eating her cereal as she pictured them sitting together as a family, feeding their own child pancakes. However it was a tradition she'd taken from them and she couldn't help but continue it with her own son. Anyway, it was the longest time she'd spent in one place and they were nice people.
Emma took her phone out from her jumper and then put it on the work surface, she then rolled up her sleeves and then turned to wash her hands in the sink. Once she'd throughly washed and dried them, she turned back to face the ingredients before her. Then, in the corner of her eye, she saw her phone flash once more with a notification. Before her hands got messy with pancake batter, Emma decided that if any time was good, this time would be the best to face what was another text from Killian.
KILLIAN: I'll pick you up at 7 this evening Swan. Wear something nice.
Emma scoffed before placing her phone back on top of the work surface before continuing to work on her pancake creations.
20 minutes later, Emma and Henry were both sitting at the kitchen table, eating their pancakes. As Emma looked over at her son who was piling on strawberries and maple syrup onto his plate, Emma couldn't help but think back to what Mary Margaret had said about Henry starting to ask about his father. Henry was just so young, and Emma hadn't been prepared for him to start asking the serious questions so soon.
"Thanks for the pancakes, Mom." Henry said and broke the silence between them both. Emma took the bowl of strawberries and made a pile on top of her pancakes. She placed the bowl back in the centre of the table and then took the maple syrup and dribbled it over her stack of pancakes.
"Hey, so I need to ask you something." Emma started, but now she was about to talk to her son about his father, all she wanted to do was run for the hills.
"What is it?" Henry asked and took another bite from his breakfast. Emma took a deep breathe. Here goes nothing.
"You know if you ever wanted to talk to me about your dad, you can." Emma said. Henry brought his eyes up to hers, and then he started playing with his food on his plate. "I know he's not around, and I know you probably have questions." Henry stayed silent, and for a moment, Emma thought that he would change the topic and bring his father up again at a later date once he'd thought everything through. But the little boy surprised her.
"What was his name?" Henry asked and put down his fork on his plate. He was all business. Emma picked up her napkin and wiped her mouth, buying herself a few extra seconds before she had to have possibly the toughest conversation she has ever had with her young son.
"Neal." Emma replied. "His name was Neal." She started and then looked over at Henry who was willing for her to continue. "I met him when I was 17. I fell in love – or I thought I fell in love." Emma smiled and remembered her naïvety at that age. "Do you remember where I gave birth to you?" Emma asked and Henry nodded.
"In prison?" Henry said and Emma reached over and took his hand into her own.
"That's right." She said and started stroking her thumb over his knuckles. "I went through labour by myself, in a hospital room where no one else was allowed in apart from nurses to check my process every so often." Emma smiled sadly and then continued her story. "I gave birth to you, handcuffed to a bed with prison wardens standing at the door. I got to hold you, and kiss you and tell you how much I loved you for one day. 24 hours. And then you were gone."
"Mary Margaret and David took me." Henry filled in the blanks that he knew and squeezed his mom's hand tighter.
"Yes they did. They were the only people to know I was pregnant outside of the prison walls. As soon as I told them, they offered to take you so that I knew you would be safe. 2 months after I gave birth, I got released and I could finally hold you again."
"What happened to my Dad?" Emma sighed and gave a small shrug of her shoulders.
"I don't know kid."
"Why didn't he come and save you?" It was a question Emma knew that he might ask. However, hearing those words come out of Henry's mouth killed her. He loved fairytales so much and so the realisation that his father wasn't a Prince Charming must of hurt him. But it was the truth. Not everyone in the world was good, and his father, Neal, was defiantly not good.
"He – he blamed me for his crime. And he didn't look back." She could see his brain ticking as he was thinking everything over. She expected that to be the last of his questions, so she stood up and took her empty plate to the sink and started to tidy up. That was, until Henry voiced one last question on the topic of his father.
"Did he know about me?" His voice was quiet, practically a whisper. But it was enough to make Emma halter and turn back around to face him.
"He-" Emma started and then stopped. What could she say? Whatever she said, it was going to hurt her son. "I didn't even know I was pregnant when I went to prison Henry. So no, he didn't know either." Henry gave no indication that he'd even heard what she said, he instantly turned his attention back to his breakfast.
It was a tough conversation to have with her son, but it was one they needed to have. Emma could only go for so long dodging the questions about his dad, but once he'd started speaking about it to his teachers at school and then Mary Margaret and David, she knew it was a topic that she couldn't put off any longer.
It was a lot later in the day when Emma's mind drifted back to the date she was going on that night. She'd dropped Henry off at Grace's house and gave him a kiss goodbye. It wasn't until she was standing at her closet, looking at her clothes that she had no idea what they were doing on their 'date' and in turn, she had no idea what to wear. She could text Killian and ask him what he had planned, but then she knew she'd open herself up for a snarky reply back, so she decided against it. Whatever he had planned, she knew it would be somewhere where they would easily be spotted so that the rumour mill would start to spin.
Killian pulled up to Emma's house a few minutes before 7. He may be a dick at times, but he was also a gentlemen, and arriving promptly before taking a woman out on a date was something he had always taken seriously. Even if this date was fake and it was with Emma Swan; the woman who he couldn't help but be frustrated by, but at the same time, who he wanted to get to know more.
He climbed out of his car and straightened out his blue shirt over this dark trousers. He reached over to the passenger seat and grabbed his black leather jacket before sliding it on and then reaching over to take the rose that he had also put on the seat. He held it behind his back as he shut the door to his car and then walked up the steps to her front porch.
It took only a matter of seconds for Emma to appear at the door after he'd knocked, and God did she look breathtaking. She was wearing a baby pink dress that fell to her knees but accentuated her shoulders and breasts. Around her waist there was a pink belt that brought attention to her gorgeous figure and just above that, the material that surrounded her chest had tiny pink embroidered flowers that brought attention to the bodice. Below the belt, the dress became floaty. Emma's golden locks were pulled up into a high ponytail. Her makeup was classy and elegant with the perfect pink lip to finish off the look. Killian couldn't help but stare at the goddess in front of him, but it was almost as if he was in a trance and Emma had put him underneath her curse and there was no escaping now.
"Swan." He paused as his eyes trailed down her body, starting at her eyes, down to the hem of her dress, before his eyes met hers once again. "You look stunning." Emma nearly looked as shocked as he did, her mouth falling slightly ajar as her eyes looked him up and down.
"You look…" Emma said before Killian finished off her sentence.
"I know." Emma scoffed and grabbed her bag from the table in the hallway, as Killian took a step back so that she could come outside and lock the door. "You didn't think I would come dressed as a pirate did you?" Killian joked.
"I didn't know what I expected" Emma replied and dropped her keys into her bag. They walked towards Killian's car in silence and as they neared, Killian ran ahead of open the passenger side door. "Are you going to do this every time we get in a car together?" Emma teased.
"Gentlemen, remember Swan?" He shut the door and then jogged around to the drivers side, before slipping his seat belt on and putting the car into first gear.
"So are you going to let me know where we're going or am I supposed to guess?" Emma asked once they'd been on the road for a few minutes.
"Well you can try and guess, but I doubt you'll get it." He replied and his brought. His attention back to the road in front of him, rather than the elegant blonde haired princess that sat beside him.
Killian tried to focus then on the night in hand. He knew he'd planned a pleasant evening for them both, even though he knew that the evening would also be awkward at the same time. He wasn't stupid; he knew that their acting would need to start the moment their doors opened, and it would end as soon as the car door closes for the night again. As far as anyone else knew, they were a young, loved up couple going on a date, and they needed to make sure the whole world believed that too.
Before he even took note of what was happening, Killian pulled into a car park in Downtown Los Angeles. This was it. The start of their adventure. The beginning of a journey. And he couldn't help but be a little terrified. He'd never dated anyone in the public eye before, and to the best of his knowledge, neither had she. He wasn't a saint, far, far from it. But he truly did want to change his image for the better, to do Liam, Elsa, Ella and Robin , but more importantly, his parents proud.
3. He took a deep breathe in. 2. He took a deep breathe out. 1. He opened his car door. Action.