TITLE: into the hat
CHARACTERS: Emma Swan, Jefferson
NOTES: numero tres
in which Emma tells Mary Margaret that she's sort of kind of dating Jefferson
"He drugged you, Emma." That's the first thing that Mary Margaret has to say on the subject, and it's so shocked and judgmental that it makes Emma believe for a second. Friends don't use that tone of voice. Parents do. But Emma shakes that thought away with the same shrug that she uses as a response.
"I've dealt with worse," Emma says. Mary Margaret has another look for her then. It's one of those looks that begs for Emma to reevaluate her life and choices. Begs for Emma to listen and back away. Listening has never been her forte.
"You can't date this guy. You should actually be arresting him. He kidnapped me and tied me up in a room in his creepy little mansion. He kidnapped and drugged you and forced you to make a hat. He's crazy!"
Emma's eyes narrow. She replies, "The world is crazy, Mary Margaret. He's just doing what it takes to survive. I get that."
Mary Margaret scoffs. "Great. The sheriff of our town sympathizes with a… murderer!"
"You didn't have a problem when that murderer was you." Mary Margaret opens her mouth to object, but Emma has her own objection first. "And he hasn't killed anyone."
"Ever. And he won't. Jefferson just wants to be with his family. He just wants to be loved and love back. What's so wrong with that?"
The question says a lot more than it actually does. Holds more. Emma wants a family. She wants her parents and her son and someone to be there no matter what crazy shit life throws at them. She wants the perfect life, or even something close to perfect. Mary Margaret wants the same thing. It's obvious that she wants to be with David without harassment. It's all she wants. And when she went for that, she landed in trouble. She got caught up. But that didn't make her want, her choices, any worse than they were before. There's nothing wrong with trying to get what you want. With protecting those you love. That's the reason Emma's in Storybrooke. Is Mary Margaret really going to shoot that down?
Mary Margaret sighs, her back leaning further into the wall behind her. She whispers, "Nothing. There is nothing wrong with that." She glances up and meets Emma's gaze. There's a question there, but it's not aimed at Emma. Emma wonders if it's the same question she won't dare ask herself, if it's about them and the bond they're supposed to share. "J-just be careful, Emma. I don't want anything to happen to you."
Emma wants to respond with something sarcastic or elusive ('Yeah, thanks, Mom' or 'I'm the sheriff'), but she can't bring herself to say it. She can only nod. "I will," she says, and it's more than just a promise about her safety. It's a promise about their safety, about everyone's. She'll be careful, and she'll fix every problem in this town, starting with the little stuff and working up to the biggest problem of all, Regina. And she'll use Jefferson's plan to do it.