Title: Once Upon a Time
Rating: G

Theme: Mother Confessors
Genre: General/Drama
Characters: Original Characters, mention of Canon characters
Timeline/Spoilers: After the series

Prompt: Song Title (Music Box - Mariah Carey)
Word Count: 513

Author's Notes: So this one takes place after the series, but it exists in the world that the series created and not that of the bookverse.


Rachel clambered eagerly up into her mother's lap and settled herself comfortably there. She reached easily for the trailing sleeves of Isabeau's dress and smoothed them over her own lap with a familiarity that spoke of long cherished practice.

"Momma, what's that; magic?" She asked, reaching curious hands to the small object in her mother's hands.

Isabeau smiled and rewound the small music box carefully before placing it gently in her daughter's small fingers.

"I used to think so," the Mother Confessor admitted, still with a quiet smile in her voice. "It was your grandmother's," she explained as the box played its quiet tune. "Your grandfather Richard had it made for her when I was born."

"Pretty," the young girl said, admiring the muted shimmer and shine of it as she hummed along with the tune happily.

"Yes," Isabeau agreed simply, dropping a kiss to the top of her daughter's head and smiling once more.

Rachel ran a small finger over the unfamiliar symbols and shapes that ran in circles around the inside of unusual compass shaped music box.

"What are these?" She asked, her fingertips lingering on her favorite shapes, smoothing over them with delight.

"My mother said that they told a story, a special story about her and my father... and me..." Isabeau replied. "And now you too."

"Me?" Rachel asked with bright curiosity.

"You," Isabeau confirmed.

"What does it say? What's the story?" The Mother Confessor's young daughter asked excitedly.

"Love..." Isabeau replied simply, saying nothing more.

Rachel titled her head back to look up at her mother, a curious, almost disappointed look in her cinnamon brown eyes.

"Love... that's it?" She asked with all the stubborn bluntness that only a seven year old could possess. "Momma, stories are suppose to begin with, once upon a time, and end with, happily ever after," Rachel explained with a tone that suggested that it was something that everyone should know.

Isabeau laughed lightly.

"That's what I told your grandmother."

Rachel titled her head back down to consider the music box in her hands. Her mother dropped another quick kiss on her golden brown curls. She reached for the music box and wound it up gently before once more placing it back in her daughter's hands.

"Your grandmother told me that the story was about love, and that it was one that I already knew, by heart. And she told me that everyday of my life added a page to that story."

"But that's not a proper story at all," Rachel grumped before holding the music box up to be rewound once more. For a moment, they both listened to the familiar tune, one that Isabeau often sang to Rachel as she put her to sleep.

Then Isabeau smiled above her daughter's head.

"Once upon a time," she said softly, feeling Rachel's delight as the child bounced in her lap a little. "Once upon a time there was a young man named Richard..."