AN: So it's been almost a year since the last update. I didn't forget about this one I just got distracted by other fandoms and by season 2. Hope this makes up for that, despite she shortness of the chapter. Enjoy!
Chapter 6: First Date
Emma took a moment to study the beautiful blonde who had opened Regina's door with such familiarity. She firmly pushed down the quick burst of jealousy and forced herself to think rationally and find out who this woman was before she tore her head off for being in Regina's house.
Emma cleared her throat, "Um, is Regina here?"
Katherine looked the unknown woman up and down, sizing her up and then she smiled as she realized that this was the woman who had Regina upstairs frazzled about what to wear. "Yes she is. Please come in, Miss…?"
"Swan, Emma Swan. And you are?"
"Katherine Nolan. I'm Regina's best friend and sometime babysitter for Henry." Katherine held out her hand to Emma who promptly and politely shook it.
When Katherine mentioned Henry, Emma smiled, "Speaking of the kid, is he still awake?"
Katherine nodded, "Yeah just a moment." Katherine led Emma into the living room as she called out to Henry who was sitting at the dining room table doing his homework. "Henry, you have a visitor." Katherine turned to Emma, "While the two of you talk, I'll go tell Regina you're here."
Emma nodded and smiled her thanks. She watched Katherine leave the room just as Henry walked in. The little boy was all smiles when he saw Emma.
"Hey kid, staying out of trouble?" Emma joked, knowing the boy would be on his best behavior for a while.
Henry just grinned then he grabbed Emma's hand and brought her to the dining room so they could talk while he finished his homework. Emma settled down into a chair and smiled as she watched her son doing his homework. It was something she never thought she'd have the chance to do after she'd given him up.
Katherine entered Regina's bedroom and grinned at the state of the room. It looked like a mini hurricane has swept in and tossed the dark haired woman's closet around. There were dozens of discarded outfits thrown haphazardly on the bed and Regina was standing in front of her walk in closet staring at her remaining clothes. When she heard Katherine enter she turned to look at her friend and tried to smile. "As ridiculous as this sounds…I have nothing to wear!"
Katherine fought not to laugh at the situation, knowing her friend wouldn't appreciate her mirth. Instead, she closed the door behind her and moved towards the clothes thrown on the bed. She took a moment to rummage through the tops, skirts, and dresses before she pulled a black dress from the pile. It was simple, elegant and perfect for a first date. It was black with an intricate design near the hem in white that resembled a thorny vine winding around the left leg and snaking up the left side to the waist. Katherine handed the dress to Regina and said, "Wear this, it's perfect and you know you look best in black."
Regina took the dress from her and looked at it, eyeing it critically. "Hmmm…are you sure?" Regina wanted to look really good tonight, she felt that she owed Emma that much at least. The blonde was giving her a second chance, she was back in her life and willing to try again despite the pain she'd put Emma through.
Katherine sighed, "Trust me Regina, it's perfect. Now go change while I pick out your shoes." Katherine gently but firmly nudged Regina in the direction of the master bathroom while she turned to the brunette's closet to find a pair of heels for her.
Regina went into the bathroom and began to change out of her blue silk robe and into the little black dress. When she stepped back into her bedroom, she saw her best friend holding up a pair of black heels. She quickly grabbed them and slipped them on. She looked up at Katherine, "Thanks Katherine. I would've probably been up here for another hour trying to find the perfect outfit."
Katherine dismissed the praise with her hand, "Don't mention it Regina. Besides, this nervous thing you got going on right now is…appealing. It makes you seem more human."
Regina narrowed her eyes a bit, her nerves forgotten for the moment, "More human? Are you implying that I normally come off as…inhuman or something?"
Katherine hid her smile as her plan seemed to work. Make Regina focus on something other than her nerves so she could get past them and have a good time on her date tonight, and so that Emma didn't have to see Regina looking nervous or vulnerable. Katherine knew her friend didn't like people seeing her softer side. "Of course not, it's just that you're always so…composed and put together, that it's nice to see this side of you."
Regina relaxed at that and smiled, "Well, thank you but it's not a side I like to show to people. I am the mayor of this town, I have a certain image to uphold."
Katherine did smile this time, "Yes, well, it's also nice to know that you're not perfect Regina. I think the people of this town might benefit from seeing you a bit softer and less in control. This is a small town Regina, and everyone knows everyone else and their business. Sooner rather than later, they are going to know about Emma. Wouldn't it be better if it came from you and not some gossipy old maid?"
Regina took a moment to think about that and she realized her friend was right, it would benefit her more in the long run if she was the one to come out about her relationship with Emma rather than have someone else spill the beans and make it look like she had something to hide or be ashamed of. It would also be better if she and Emma were the ones to tell Henry before he heard about it in the schoolyard or on the streets. "I see your point. However, it's still early for any big announcements. For now, I'd like to just enjoy the moment."
Katherine just nodded. "Okay. By the way, Emma is downstairs right now with Henry…waiting for you."
Regina's eyes widened a bit, "Why didn't you say that when you came in?"
Before Katherine could respond, Regina was out the door and headed for the stairs. She was ready to go and only had to grab her purse near the front door and she'd be all set.
Emma heard footsteps on the stairs and she stood up from the table and turned to face the door. After a few moments, Regina came walking into the room looking…stunning. Emma just stared at her for a few moments before she managed to shake herself free of the moment and smile at Regina. "Hey, you look…very beautiful Regina." It took all of Emma's self-control not to reach out and touch Regina in front of Henry, or to call her Gina like she wanted to.
Regina felt herself begin to blush, something she almost never did, at the sincerity in Emma's voice. She looked the blonde up and down and found that she liked what she saw. Emma was wearing black dress pants and a blue silk blouse over what looked like a white tank top, and black leather boots. To Regina, Emma looked good enough to eat…and she was suddenly assaulted with memories of their time together in Boston.
"Thank you Emma, you look very nice as well." Regina finally managed to say as she forcefully pushed the memories to the back of her mind.
Emma stepped forward a bit, "Thank you. So, are you ready to go?"
Regina nodded and, after they said their goodbyes to Henry and Katherine, they were off to dinner.
Henry sat at the table staring at his homework, thinking about what just happened. After a few moments, he got up and walked to the living room where Miss Katherine was watching TV. He sat down next to her and asked, "Miss Katherine, if I asked you something, would you tell me the truth?"
Katherine turned to look at the young boy and felt her heart sink a little. She had a feeling she knew what he was going to ask and she didn't know how she would answer him. "If I can, then I will. What's your question Henry?"
Henry took a moment to think about what he wanted to ask before he said, "Are my mom and Emma…dating?"
Yup, that was the question she was expecting. Katherine took a moment to think about what she could say. On the one hand, she could be honest with him but she also felt that it wasn't her place to tell Henry about his mom and Emma. She took a breath and said, "What makes you think they are dating?" She figured a stall tactic might be called for here.
Henry sighed, "I don't know exactly but…just now it seemed like Emma was picking my mom up for a date. My mom was wearing a nice dress and even Emma was wearing nice clothes and not the jeans she's been wearing lately. They're going out to dinner together…isn't that what a date is?"
Katherine smiled, "Sometimes, yes that can be a date. And sometimes it's just two people having dinner together. I suspect they are having dinner to discuss what to do about the situation the three of you are in."
"What do you mean?"
"Well, your mom didn't exactly plan on having Emma come into your life just yet. And I'm sure Emma wasn't planning on it either but now that she's here, of course she wants to get to know you. Your mom and Emma now have to find a way for that to happen that doesn't disrupt your life any more than it already has. They also are probably going to come up with some ground rules so that there's no question which one of them has the final say in decision about you." Katherine was a little amazed that she was able to pull all that out of thin air but now that she thought about it, it made sense. Emma and Regina would have to come to some sort of understanding when it came to Henry so that the boy wouldn't try to play one of them against the other to get his own way. Not that Henry was a troublemaker or anything like that, but Katherine figured his situation was similar to that of kids from divorced parents. If the parent you live with says no, ask the other parent who is most likely to say yes just to get on your good side.
Henry thought about that and it seemed like a good explanation so he let it go and thanked Katherine before going back to the dining room table to finish his homework.
Katherine sighed in relief when Henry accepted her explanation without question. She made a mental note to tell Regina what Henry had asked when she got back from her date with Emma.
Emma and Regina were sitting at a very romantic table partially hidden from view from the main restaurant area by deep purple curtains. Emma had requested the private table when Mandy had greeted them at the door and the blonde was all too willing to accommodate her. Emma sensed that Mandy might have a bit of a crush on her but she shrugged it off, deciding to only deal with it if it became a real problem.
They had ordered their food and were waiting for it to arrive when Regina cleared her throat, "Emma, darling, this place is amazing. I must admit I never even knew it existed until tonight. However did you find it?"
Emma just grinned, "Honestly, I was just driving around this town when I came across this place. I came in and met the owner, Mandy, and luckily there was an opening for tonight. It was almost like…well like magic or something."
Regina just smiled. She didn't really believe in magic…not until she opened her door a few days ago and saw Emma standing there. Surely magic or fate was responsible for their reunion.
The waitress came then and placed their meals on the table. With a smile and the request that if they need anything to just call her, she was out of their area once again.
Regina lifted her wine glass and smiled when Emma did the same, "To magic, or fate, for bringing us together again my sweet Emma." They clinked glasses and took a sip a wine.
After a moment, they began eating and the silence was broken up by little bursts of conversation. Mostly they talked about Henry and Emma getting to know him but they also discussed how Emma was going to woo Regina without the whole town finding out before they were ready.
Emma admitted it wasn't going to be easy but she was determined to find a way to sweep Regina off her feet and back into her bed.