Disclaimer - I don't own OUAT etc.

Chapter 01 - Why Won't You Kiss Me?

"Hi," Regina jumped at the sound of a voice next to her ear, then immediately relaxed as two red leather clad arms circled her neck and a soft pair of lips made contact with the back of her head. She smiled as she felt a pointy chin gently replace the lips. "Whatcha doing?"

"Working Miss Swan," Regina leant into the backwards hug as Emma grabbed one of the papers that had Regina so engrossed that she hadn't noticed the sheriff's arrival.

"Fun," Emma deadpanned, placing the paper back onto the desk and spinning Regina's chair around so that the pair were facing each other. "I'm bored,"

"Are you just here to distract me Miss Swan?" Regina smiled indulgently at her, "Or was there an actual, work-related reason for you being here?"

"I'm bored" Emma repeated and promptly sat on Regina's lap, arms still circling her neck. She bought her right hand up to brush Regina's hair behind her ear and then started to run her fingers through the short brown locks.

"And you thought I would alleviate your boredom?" Regina raised an eyebrow and circled Emma's waist with her arms as Emma rested her head in the nape of Regina's neck.

"I thought you might be bored too," Emma peppered kisses on Regina's neck, her hand slowly travelling up and down the mayor's collar bone, "I thought we could entertain each other." She smiled devilishly at Regina and bought her mouth up to meet Regina's.

"Unfortunately," Regina abruptly pulled away before their lips met, "I have work to do, so I'm afraid you'll have to 'entertain' yourself until I finish up here." Regina kissed Emma's forehead and swatted her off of her lap. Emma frowned and got up as Regina spun herself back towards the desk. "You know you shouldn't pull that face, Henry informs me that if the wind changes whilst you do, it'll stick like that, and I would much rather a girlfriend that doesn't look like…"

"Why won't you kiss me?" Emma interrupted her. Regina closed her eyes and bit her lip before picking up her pen to resume her work.

"What do you mean?" She didn't look up as Emma circled the desk to stand in front of her, "I kiss you all the time." It was a matter-of-fact statement that was absolutely true, Regina kissed Emma. She kissed Emma's forehead, her cheek, in fact Regina had kissed Emma almost everywhere you could kiss a person. Almost.

"I mean a real kiss," Emma said, she was getting angry, finally letting out what she had been dying to say for months now, "An honest to God kiss that happens between girlfriends. A kiss on the lips." Emma clarified. Regina stayed silent, no more wanting to have this conversation than she wanted to have her wisdom teeth removed without anaesthetic. So she just kept working, hoping that Emma would simply leave in a huff. Unsurprisingly, that didn't happen.

"You kissed Graham, and you didn't even like him. Or at least that's what you told me. That he didn't mean anything to you. I thought I meant, I mean, something to you. So why have you never kissed me? It's one of the first things that's people do when they're intimate with each other, it's a way of saying you want to be intimate, of revealing your emotions, so why haven't…Is there something wrong with me?" Emma went from ranting angrily, to sounding like a kicked puppy.

"No!" Regina's head shot up in disbelief, "There is absolutely nothing wrong with you Miss Swan,"

"Then why won't you kiss me?" Emma had her arms folded and she was looking expectantly at Regina, the hurt still evident in her voice, clouded just barely by that righteous anger. Regina couldn't look at her, so instead she looked down at her papers again. "Regina? Talk to me,"

"There really isn't anything to talk about." Regina stated, hoping, like a small child hopes that he won't get caught with his hand in the cookie jar, that Emma would leave it alone.

"I think there is." Emma half shouted, the frustration that she felt over the issue steadily rising, "It isn't because you feel nothing for me, because you felt nothing for graham, I can't see why you wouldn't kiss me if you actually liked me, so it must be because you hate me, because you can't stand the thought of being that intimate with me, because I am somehow repulsive to you and there isn't anything in the world that you'd hate more, maybe you think that kissing me is beneath you, or…" Emma's voice was getting louder and louder as she reeled off reasons that she had come up with over the months of milling the question in her head, reasons that were so far from the truth that Regina wanted to cry. So, in fact, Regina did. She knew that this was coming, this whole situation was inevitable, but she had just hoped that maybe it wouldn't happen so soon.

"It's because I love you," She said, and she will never figure out how Emma heard her over all of the blonde's paranoid ranting, but she did, and that one, barely audible sentence stopped Emma dead.

"What?" Emma stood in the middle of the mayor's office, dumbstruck.

Regina took a deep breath, stood up and walked to stand in front of Emma, she took the blonde's hands in her own and pulled them around herself, then she clasped her hands onto Emma's shoulder and muttered into Emma's hair. She knew that Emma could never understand just how much of a huge deal this was for Regina, she knew that she wasn't ready for this, to admit to Emma how she felt, but she also knew that she couldn't let Emma think that she hated her, or thought she was repulsive, or any of the nasty things Emma said about herself. So she said it again. "I love you." She felt Emma squeeze her arms tight around Regina and then gently pull the mayor's head back so that they Regina could see the huge grin that was plastered on Emma's face.

"Why is that a problem?" Emma was crying now too, but the beam gave away the happiness behind the tears whilst Regina still looked devastated. How could Regina tell her that the problem with loving her is that she loved her. That her feelings for Emma were so deep that it surpassed anything she had ever felt for anyone in the world, that this, for Regina, was true love. That true love was magic. That if she kissed Emma, one of two things would happen. Either Emma truly loved her back and the curse would be broken and everyone would go back to Fairy Tale Land. Emma would find out about all of the horrible things Regina had done and then she would hate her like everybody else did, or Emma didn't love her and the curse would stay intact and everyone would stay in Storybrooke, not remembering how much they hated the Evil Queen, but hating Regina anyway. Regina's already broken heart would shatter into a million pieces and she would never get the happy ending that all of this was for. How could she tell Emma that kissing her would force Regina to lose Emma's love, or find out that she never had it in the first place, in this moment, Regina couldn't figure out which situation would break her heart more.

"It's not," Regina mumbled, clinging to Emma like a life line, knowing that whatever the outcome of what was about to happen, she would never get to hold her like this again.

"So…" Emma started, but before she could finish, and before Regina could lose her nerve, Regina's lips where on hers, desperate and loving and broken and tender and all of the things that Regina felt, all poured from her mouth into Emma's. It felt like flying, and even as Regina felt what was left of her soul falling out of her, she couldn't bring herself to feel anything but euphoric. This was the woman she loved and the thing she wanted most and she finally had it, she finally felt the happiness that she had longed for, for as long as she could remember. Right here in this moment, this was her happy ending.

But in fairy tales, the thing that no one seems to dwell on, the thing no one really cares about, the Evil Queen doesn't get a happily ever after, instead, the Evil Queen gets to dance in red-hot iron shoes until she dies. When the two women finally pulled apart, Regina's hands fell limply to her sides and she looked up towards the ceiling. Tears fell heavily down her cheeks; she could feel Emma's hands run down her arms and then their fingers entwined with one another, Emma stepped towards Regina again, gently pulling her chin down so that Regina was looking directly into Emma's eyes. Emma smiled and Regina silently waited, to find out which unhappy ending she was going to get.

When the ending came; Regina realised which she thought was worse.
And, of course, this being a fairy tale and her being the Evil Queen; that was the one she got.