DISCLAIMER:: just borrowing characters for my own creative expression. no profit recieved.

SUMMARY:: Light and Dark forces battle for possession of Princess Emma, the one weapon that could tip the scales in their favor. She's fortold to be the saviour of them all but who will save her. The one woman who can was lost many years ago.

A/N:: so this baby has been incubating for a while after i caught my mom watching a movie that sparked my creativity. so i stole the movie concept and tweaked it to fit my story. i have since found out that there is a show with a similar concept but that was after i started writing, so any similarities to the show fall under the disclaimer above. i just have bits and pieces written of the chapters to follow because i haven't yet decided if henry will be included in this little gem. anyways, i would greatly appreciate reviews. they are love and i'm more concerned about how this story is going to go over than any of my other stories for OUAT so far. let me know what you think.



She had dreaded the swelling of her stomach. She wasn't opposed to children. Far from it. If she had her say she'd have the halls of the castle filled with the laughter of children. But it was too dangerous to breed in these times. With the threat the Evil Queen had so gloriously lobbed at her on her wedding day always hanging over her head, she knew the life of this child would not be an easy one.

Going before him, asking anything of him was absurd, but she had no choice. The Evil Queen had become too powerful to stop by conventional means. Her magic could not be bested except by one who's magic was greater. Only one such individual existed. Unsavory as he was, he had become the lesser of the two evils she faced. With her choices vastly limited, she found herself standing in the cave deep below the surface without remembering how she'd gotten there. The only thing that fueled her was the why.

She wasted no time trying to hide her presence from him. History had served in teaching her that he already knew she was there the moment she entered the cave and she didn't want to show her fear to him. He would just exploit that particular weakness and she didn't want to allow him to have any more leverage than she could handle.

His head was tilted curiously to the side as he studied her swollen stomach with a fevered curiosity. His mind had been lost with the death of the one woman who could possibly have saved him. Belle had been her name. She had heard the tale from a weary traveler who had sought relief in their castle on his way to distant lands. He had told of how the little creature had retained her as a prisoner and how their fondness for each other had grown over the weeks that followed. But the poor dear, after being released from his custody, had been turned away by her family and faced unspeakable things. If the traveler was to be believed of course.

"I want the Evil Queen gone." She didn't see any point in hiding her intent for being here. She wanted something and, at least in this case, she was willing to openly bargain for it.

"Don't we all dearie?" His eyes didn't shift from her stomach even as he addressed her and she shivered slightly, for the first time starting to question her decision.

"Can you make her disappear?"

The man tilted his head back and forth as if weighing out exactly how much power it would take him to accomplish this. He shrugged dramatically. "I tried to help you murder her once, and you failed, I will not do it again." He leaned through the bars, his eyes sinking back to her stomach. "However, I will help her."

She flinched. "Help her how?"

"Your daughter will be the saviour of all. There are big things in the future, dark things, and your daughter is destined to be the light in the darkness. I will help contain the Evil Queen."

Involuntarily, she took a step forward, his words calling to something in her, or rather, someone. "Contain her how?"

"That is not your concern, dearie. All you need to know is that the only one who'll be able to set her free is the child which you now carry."

She touched a hand to her swollen abdomen. Her daughter kicked out against her hand and she smiled. She had known from the moment she found out she was pregnant that her child would be destined for great things. Sure, saviour of all was a bit of a stretch, but she knew her daughter would be important one day. "What is your price?"

"Freedom dearie, and my kingdom, as well as that of the Evil Queen restored to my possession."

She shook her head. "You would just come after us. My family, my friends, would be in just as much danger as we are with the Evil Queen."

The man conceded with a tilt of his head. "A magical contract then, preventing me from directly attacking your family or friends, with an expiry date of twenty eight years."

Her brow furrowed. This creature had never once broken his contractual obligations. In fact, he was famous for keeping his end of a bargain no matter what. It was always the other party that failed to hold up their side. Twenty eight years was a long time, but why twenty eight, why not thirty? It seemed like an odd number, but who was she to question the desires of a madman? It was either agree and have twenty eight years of happiness out from under the threat of the Evil Queen, or refuse and face a horrible and certain fate at her hands. Finally she nodded. "Deal."

He clapped his hands together in delight. "On the day of her birth," he looked pointedly at her stomach, "the Queen will be watching. The moment she beholds the Princess, she will fall into a slumber so deep that no mortal means can wake her. Though I'm sure many will try, all will fail."

"Don't tell me true love's kiss will awaken her?" She didn't like the idea of everyone in the land lining up to try their chances at kissing Regina and risk one of them actually being able to revive her.

"A very powerful cure for most curses, to be sure, but not for this one. The Queen will stay, balanced in the unknown between life and death, no matter who's lips seek hers."

She nodded. It was enough for her. "Very well. I will have the contract drawn up by the fairies. The moment we have confirmed Regina's incapacitation, you will have your freedom." She turned to go, but then looked back over her shoulder. "May I ask you a question?" She didn't wait for him to respond for fear he'd refuse. "Why twenty eight years? It seems so odd a length of time."

The man hopped up to the bars of his cage. "Let me feel one kick and I will answer your question."

Her feet were moving her forward before her mind had even decided. Then she was at the bars and his dirty hand was pressed firmly against the swell of her belly. His eyes caught hers. "On her twenty eighth birthday, you're child will make a decision that will affect the rest of her life."

She was so enraptured in the magical man's words that she didn't see the magic seeping from his hand into her abdomen.


"The baby's coming!" The genie's face appeared in the mirror, startling her, though she had learned long ago to not let her shock show. She looked over at him calmly, but her eyes were hungry and bright.

"How long?"

"A few minutes at most."

She stood up, the skirts of her dress pooling out around her. She had been on edge for nearly a week, waiting for this moment. The birth of their daughter was when she had decided to enact the curse. She had everything she needed, except for her father's heart. That had to be fresh. But she had wanted to make sure their child was in the world before she let the magic loose. Although it would be horrible for Snow White to be nine months pregnant for the rest of her life, it would be much more satisfying to take from her the most precious thing in her life. "Show me."

She watched with an excitement that was quite uncommon to her as her nemesis struggled to push the baby out of her body. The whole thing took less than five minutes, but it seemed much longer, the anticipation drawing out each moment. And then the nursemaid pulled out a squalling little infant. The little being kicked and screamed, acting very un-Princess-like and she couldn't hide the smile that somehow found its way to her face. That little girl would be hers before the night was through.


She appeared in a swirl of smoke in the nursery. It had surprised her how easy Snow's wards had been to dispel. It was as if they were practically inviting her to come into the palace. Her muscles tensed, ready for an attack. She had her men on the inside relaying information to her all day. But her spies had informed her that the new parents had given the guards a light schedule in honor of the baby's birth. That was so like them. If she was the girl's mother, she'd be more responsible than that. That girl would be the most precious thing in her life and she'd increase security ten fold to protect her. It was better really then, that the girl would be coming with her. She'd bring her up in this new world, and they'd be so happy together. She felt the closest thing she'd felt to happiness in a long time at the thought.

She walked over softly to the basinet. She saw the small tufts of dark blonde hair, so soft and baby fine, peeking out from above a blanket. The embroidered letters on the blanket answered her question as to the girl's name. Emma. She smiled to herself and tucked the blanket down, exposing the little face sleeping peacefully. She held back a gasp at the surge that passed through her body. She stroked a soft cheek with the back of a finger. "You are magnificent, aren't you?"

She lifted the small infant from her basinet and held her up, staring at her in wonder. Her innocence was so pure. It gave her a large sense of pride knowing she was going to spare her of having to grow up with that betrayer and her lap dog husband. It was the most generous thing she'd ever done. She folded the girl into her arms and as she did, the infant woke. She didn't cry out or scream, just stared up into the eyes of the woman holding her.

For a moment, her breath caught. Emma's deep green eyes seemed to penetrate deep into the very heart of her. There was something so… familiar there, as if she'd seen it before. Suddenly feeling tired, she stumbled over to the nearby rocking chair and fell into it, her eyes never leaving those of the infants.

She ignored the warnings firing off in her brain, choosing instead to put all effort into wordlessly communicating with the newborn. Slowly, a smile crept across her face. "I never believed I'd find you."

The little infant smiled at her and the Evil Queen slipped off the edge and into darkness.

The door burst open and Snow stormed in, pulling Emma from the unconscious woman's arms. She motioned the guards forward once the baby was free of the woman's grasp.

A guard stepped forward cautiously and shook the Queen's shoulder but she didn't awaken. He checked her pulse. "Just as you said Your Majesty. She's alive, but she won't wake."

She finally let herself breathe a sigh or relief and smile. "Good. Take her away. The dwarves have provided us with the enchanted glass coffin I was once housed in. Put her in that. They will take her and hide her away in a place where no one will ever lay eyes on her again."

She clung her daughter closer to her chest as the men hauled the woman out of the nursery.


Outside the cave that housed Rumpelstiltskin's cell, a woman in a white cloak waited. She had put up a cloaking spell to prevent her from being seen by the guards that continually patrolled the grounds. He would be released tonight.

Right on schedule, a rider on a horse came and spoke with the guards at the entrance of the cavern. One disappeared inside as the rider and the other guard waited. A few moments later the guard reemerged, leading the Dark One by a rope pull around his hands. Once they were clear of the cave entrance, the guard turned and started to untie his hands as the rider spoke to him of his agreement with the young Queen.

She watched as the creature took a copy of the formal agreement and pranced off. Once he was gone, the rider took off back towards the castle and the guards disappeared into the cave, probably to play a game of cards now that they had nothing left to guard.

"Eavesdropping isn't nice dearie."

She tensed for a moment. She had known he would sense her presence. She turned and came face to face with his insane smile. "They should never have agreed to let you out of captivity."

He shrugged. "There was no other way to take care of Snow White's problem. You certainly didn't offer your services."

The woman in the white cloak felt the prickling of her temper. It wasn't something easily ignited, but she was a force to be reckoned with when it was.

"Things happen for a reason. I choose not to trifle with fate."

"Especially not her fate, hmm?" He seemed delighted that he'd pressed her buttons so easily.

"You used magic on the child. What did you do to her?"

The man seemed to consider his answer for a long while before he offered it to her. "Let's just say I gave the dark side a fighting chance."

Her hands clenched into fists. She'd have to right this wrong somehow. Without knowing the exact curse he'd put on the babe, there was no way for her to reverse it. But maybe she could find a way to mollify the effects.

"You do know where they're sending her?" The man gleefully grinned at her, his eyes giving away the words he didn't say.

She shook her head. "They wouldn't dare!"

"Oh, but they would. It's the only way to ensure the Princess will never lay eyes upon her." His grin only widened. "If you hurry dearie, you might be able to stop the dwarves."

Panic gripped her and she leered at him. "This is not over."

"It never is."

She threw one last look of disgust his way before she disappeared in a burst of white fire.

Proud of his work, the man flounced away towards his newly acquired kingdom.


She found the dwarves pulling a cart with the glass coffin down the road. She knew she didn't have much time. They were almost to their destination. She mumbled a spell under her breath and time seemed to slow to a near halt. She walked in between the dwarves, leaning down next to the one they called Grumpy's ear. "You're going the wrong way. You already delivered the Evil Queen, remember?" She repeated her words to each dwarf in turn. She walked back to the coffin and placed a hand on it. A second later, both it and her were consumed by the white flames and had disappeared.

Time resumed and the dwarves glanced around at each other, puzzled. "Why are we going back the way we came? We already dropped her off." Grumpy grumbled and turned back to lead the way home.


The fire had transported them into an empty room. It looked as if it had once been presentable but had long since gone to ruin. The walls were cracked and broken in some places, the floor as well. There were no windows in this room. She wouldn't risk anyone knowing where she'd stashed the Evil Queen. She mustn't be discovered until the time was right. Everything had been set into motion. There was only one thing left for her to do now that the first domino had been knocked over and that was wait, and watch over the Princess, until the time came for her to save them all.