As time passed Regina and Emma searched for Emma's biological son.
She also found her son's biological mother. She found that she was a lot like Emma… in the sense that she grew up in foster care and wound up pregnant at 18…there was no way to ever know who Henry's father is… Regina tried her damndest, but came up empty handed after exhausting all her possibilities. She stared at the paper in her hand with his biological mother's biographical information and shook her head. She felt..almost bad in a sense for comparing Emma to this woman.
Mainly because of the differences between them… The main difference being Emma got out of that life… this woman did not. She felt a building sorrow as she finally found a place of residence for the woman… it was the last place she would ever hope to find the woman. It was a cemetery. It wasn't far from Storybrooke.
The sorrow she felt for the loss of her son's mother and a sense of urgency overcame her. She went to her green house, a place that always managed to calm her. She collected blooms from three specific flowers: pink carnations, white carnations, and heathers. She put together a bouquet.
She knew it was still rather early for anyone to be up, but she had to resolve this now before she let anything get in the way. She took her phone from her robe pocket and dialed Emma's number.
Emma was a heap on her bed… like most other people in this small town at this hour. She jumped wildly as she heard her phone buzz. She almost threw it across the room before she realized that it was in fact her phone and someone was in fact on the other end, "Hello?" She asked, distressed.
"Emma? It's Regina."
"What's wrong? Is Henry okay?" Her voice was laced with sleep, but the concern was obvious as well.
"Henry's fine. I just… there's something I need to do, and I need you to come watch him." Regina spoke quietly.
"Okay… okay, yeah, I'll be there in a bit." Emma was already jumping into her skinny jeans. After she pulled them on and found a shirt that was clean and was not a pajama shirt, she walked up the stairs to Mary Margaret's bed, "Mary Margaret…" Emma fell onto the bed and started shaking her best friend, "Mary Margaret… get up." She was still half asleep herself.
"Mmm." The other woman tried to shove the intrusion off her bet and out of her hearing range.
"Wake up!" Emma shook her again.
"What? What is going on? Is there a fire?" She sat up.
"No… something's wrong over at the mansion… Regina needs me to watch Henry so she can 'do something'.." The blonde used air quotes around the last two words.
"So you need me to do something because ever since Henry was in the hospital you have this 'thing that cannot be described' with her and you're concerned." Mary Margaret blinked two slow times.
"I'm glad we're on the same page." Emma said, "She'll let you guys raid the pantry and fridge and stuff… just put on some clothes… let's go." She got off the bed and went back to her room to grab her jacket and keys.
When Regina opened the door to Emma and her roommate she knew something was up. Before she could even open her mouth to speak, Emma started, "So, change of plans. Mary Margaret here is going to watch Henry while we go do whatever mysterious thing it is that you need to do…" Emma gave her a closed mouth, 'there it is' smile.
Regina only nodded once, allowing Mary Margaret into her home before she turned and hugged her son, who had come down the stairs just before they got there, and walked outside. Emma hugged him as well before she tousled his hair and walked out as well. Regina was in her car taking the bouquet she had already put in a vase out of the passenger side and strapped it into the back seat.
Emma stared at it for a minute then looked at the brunette as she back out of the driveway, "What is that for?"
Regina didn't reply; she only drove. She had memorized all of the directions to the graveyard and even memorized the route she would need to take from the parking lot that she would be able to park in.
Once they got to the cemetery, she took the flowers out and started walking through the many rows. Emma kept looking to Regina as they walked through the rows of people laid to rest. This was the last thing she was expecting when she got the call that morning.
Regina only lost her way and needed reference twice before she found who she was looking for: Rachel Reese Ryan b. September 4, 1982 d. January 14, 2008.
"They are for Henry's mother." She said quietly as she set the bouquet down on the plot, finally answering Emma's question from the driveway.
The blonde took that statement in. She looked at the burial plot and saw that they would have been the same age if she were still alive. She took a breath as she watched Regina set the flowers down, "What do they mean?" Emma asked. Regina looked at her in question, "The flowers… what do they mean? You can't tell me that you garden in the greenhouse like you do and you don't know the meanings of flowers… what does the bouquet mean?"
Regina swallowed a minute, nervous to explain her reasoning behind each flower, but she gestured to each as she spoke, "Pink carnations represent gratitude, white represent remembrance, and heathers represent solitude." She didn't need to go into detail. Emma would understand why she picked them.
Emma nodded as she pulled Regina in for a hug. They stood there, in a side hug looking down at the words on her grave.
Regina looked down at the grass for a moment, "I finally found her… and everything led me here." She gestured to the headstone.
Emma moved slightly, removing Regina's arm from her back as a particularly cold wind began to settle on their backs. She moved to stand behind Regina and put both arms around her middle in a gesture of comfort. She knew that Regina was taking this harder than either of them would have ever expected. "If she were alive… what would you say to her? Aside from, 'Get the hell out of my town.'" She asked with a small smile.
Regina rolled her eyes at Emma's gag, then bit her lip as she thought, "I would tell her that she gave up the most magnificent creature the world has ever known." She looked down at the bouquet, "I would thank her for picking me to adopt him, for giving me my son. I would tell her what he's like… And I think… after everything, I would offer to let her know him, only if she desired, and only if she were clean, but I would, I think."
A couple tears ran out of either eye from Emma. She held Regina tighter as she stared down at the flowers. "I think she'd like that." Emma said, "I think that she would have had a reason to be clean if you offered her something like that." Regina nodded, "I think so too." They stood in silence a bit longer, both thanking her silently for giving them Henry. Then they walked back to the car.
After a couple more months, Henry and Regina's relationship approved thanks in full to Emma. Emma hung out at the mansion a lot… because she genuinely liked being with her son. She liked being with Regina…and she liked what was happening between them….whatever it was. She wanted it too… that's what scared her most.
In the evenings after Henry went to bed, they would work on finding her biological son. They found it was a lot harder to find the child than it was to find the mother… Emma also wasn't as adamant as this odd piece of family was beginning to form. Sure, eventually she wanted to know, but she was more concerned with Henry and Regina and her life here in Storybrooke.
It was about six months later when Regina walked into the sheriff's office with a file in hand. She had found him. They found out that his name was James Daniel Larsh and that he lived in Nevada. His parents were everything a woman could want in a couple that gave up her baby. They lived in a good neighborhood and he was, as far as they could tell, happy. Regina even found his facebook page.
Emma stared at the website on the sticky-note. She took it from the standing woman. She bit her lip and wiggled the mouse, then bit her lip once more. She pushed from the desk and opened the bottom drawer.
There wasn't a lot in it, just a few files here and there, Regina had noticed as she watched Emma curiously. Emma then pulled the false bottom and pulled her own file out. Regina knew she shouldn't be looking at it once she realized what it was, but Emma didn't bother to hide it from her either, which she found…. Intriguing.
Emma simply put the sticky note and the papers Regina brought over in the file and put it away. Emma looked up at the brunette, "Shall we go pick Henry up from Archie's and go to dinner?" She asked.
Henry was her son… that's all there was to it.