It had been six months since the unforgettable day of young Mary's Birth. Nearly two years since Emma had crashed into the Storybrooke sign and met the man she was now married to. She never thought that she could ever love anyone more then she loved Graham and Henry. Yet, the more time she spent with her baby girl, the more she fell in love with her.
On this particular day she was going with her small family to the forest. It was their special place due mainly to the fact that Graham felt so at home there, but also because it gave her wolfie-in-law to see his niece and nephew once in awhile.
She set Mary down on a blanket in the grass. Emma kissed her tiny rose bud lips and reveled in how much she looked like Graham. It was true: she had her own personality; that was apparent from day one. Mary definitely had a temper, which caused many a sleepless nights, but in Emma's eyes her baby was the most perfect baby in all of Storybrooke.
She grinned a little watching as Mary looked over at something in the distance. "Watcha looking at, angel?" she questioned as Mary gurgled and cooed contently. Emma turned her attention to whatever it was her baby girl was focusing on, and smiled.
"Oh! Hi, Wolfie," she grinned as if talking to a wolf was an every day occurrence, "come to see your nephew and your baby niece, have you?"
He whined as he snuggled into Emma's waist as if asking her to be pet. She ruffled his soft fur and then spoke again. "Go on, it's okay. Henry is just reading a book and Mary's been waiting for you."
The red-eyed wolf walked over to Henry, nuzzling him first causing the young twelve-year-old to look up from his book. "Oh! Hi, Uncle Wolf." He beamed petting his soft fur, "today, grandma taught us about your pack, it was interesting. Now I want to learn more. See?" he grinned, showing the Wolf the book he'd been intrigued with.
After nuzzling with young Henry awhile, Wolfie went over to Mary slurping like a puppy as he kissed her cheek. Mary giggled and happily kicked her feet. Emma smiled at him. "She likes that. But then again she also knows you're her uncle."
After a little bit of time had passed, Emma had watched as her wolf-in-law had sauntered away back into the forest. She whispered as she waved, "Till next time, Wolfie."
Graham had come home from the day shift tired and ready to spend it alone with his family. He couldn't help but smile as both his kids greeted him excitedly.
Henry rushed over into his arms "Hi, Dad!" he spoke hugging him tightly. "Arrest anyone good today?"
Graham shook his head as he looked down at Henry. "Nope, just your typical usual boring day at work. I missed you, kid."
Henry smiled still loving the fact that he truly had a family now. Mary gurgled and cooed from her position in Emma's arms. Reaching out for her daddy practically jumping out of Emma's arms. She chuckled as she looked at Mary. "Someone is trying to tell daddy, she missed him too."
Graham took Mary from Emma and smiled at her kissing her full head of hair. "How is my little princess? Were you a good little girl for mommy?" he questioned, the sparkle in the young six month old baby had said it all. She was indeed a very good and happy girl.
The day had passed and it had nearly been bedtime for her young family. Focusing on Henry first, Emma set Mary down on the ground. Not paying much attention to what was going on around her until Graham spoke excitedly. "Honey, get the camera!"
Emma raised an eyebrow as she came rushing out of Henry's room, stopping midway. "What did I miss?" she questioned, hoping that it wasn't something major.
"Nothing yet" Graham answered, "but I think she's trying to crawl."
Emma's eyes had welled up with tears as she watched her daughter scoot on the floor, encouraging her she spoke. "Come on, Mary, you can do it," she said all the while holding her iPhone in her hand.
Graham could feel his own eyes fill with happy tears as he held his arms out for young Mary. "Come on, princess. Come to daddy." With one last coo she scooted then crawled all the way to Emma and Graham, a content smile on her perfect little face. Graham lifted her up in his arms as a triumph smile crossed his face. "Nothing is going to stop you now, is it little wolf cub," he chuckled using the nickname he and Emma had given her so long ago.
Emma giggled as she looked at her husband. "You do realize we're going to have to baby proof this house now, right?" she offered, as she chuckled.
Seeing as the following day had been a Saturday, Graham had taken the day off allowing his father in law some time to learn to how to sheriff the town. It gave him some quality time with his family. It wasn't very often but today was special, he took them all to Granny's and winked at Henry and Emma.
"Order anything on the Menu. It's on me," he simply said, as he looked at the two of them.
Henry grinned. "Chili cheese fries, a hamburger, hot cocoa and a cherry pie." he thought for a moment before continuing, "oh and some vanilla ice cream." Henry looked at Ruby who had been taking his order.
Emma chuckled as she looked at her son. "Henry, he said anything. Not everything."
Graham wrapped his arm around his wife and spoke in her ear. "It's okay, he's a growing boy. He gets hungry." he kissed her cheek and then questioned, "and what would you like beautiful?"
Emma shrugged as she perused the menu for a moment and then looked up at Ruby. "tomato soup and grilled cheese sandwich, oh and hot cocoa of course." she offered with a wink.
Ruby jotted down the order and then looked over at little Mary with a grin. "She's getting so big," she offered with a wave, as the young child cooed at her, "I remember the first time you two brought her in here. Just a few days after she was born, she was so little." she smiled again and added, "Now look at her."
Graham beamed as he looked up at his old friend and proudly spoke. "She learned to crawl yesterday."
Emma chuckled as she spoke. "And now we can't stop her, she's everywhere," she said watching as Mary kicked her feet indicating she wanted down on the ground.
Graham sighed. His wolf brother lay beside him as he stared up at the sky. Graham had never known that his life could be filled with so much happiness. He never dreamt that his life could be full of so many people, and that those people would accept him as he was: a damaged man, growing up with only a wolf pack for family, weary of all people. Mostly the curse that Regina had placed over them all was a horrible thing, and Graham generally tried to avoid thinking about it. Yet, it was times like this, times when Graham was analyzing his life, when he would realize that without the curse he wouldn't have Emma. Of course there was always the chance that he would have been able to meet her in Fairytale Land, but she wouldn't be his wife. He wouldn't love her the way that he does, and he wouldn't have his children.
Though Henry might not be biologically his, the young boy was as much his as Mary was. His eyes filled with tears that threatened to pass the threshold and fall down his cheeks. His family meant the world to him, and even if that curse had brought everyone he knew much unhappiness, he couldn't find it within his heart to hate the only thing that brought him so much happiness.
"That's kind of messed up, isn't it?" Graham asked, staring at his wolf brother from the corner of his eye.
The wolf snorted, shaking his big head. "I see you disagree with my logic." Graham smiled. He sat up and stretched his body out. "I have to get back. It's my last day off and I promised Emma we'd go somewhere with the kids." Graham explained, bending to pat his brother on the head.
Another snort sounded from the wolf, as Graham turned to leave. "I love you too, brother," he called over his shoulder.
The walk back to the house had ended quickly, or at least quicker than Graham expected. His thoughts taking up the entire walk, as he held an internal battle within himself. No matter what his wolf brother thought, Graham knew it was horrible of him to think of the curse as anything other than terrible. It had ripped so many of his friend's lives apart.
"Graham!" Emma called, shaking him from his thoughts.
A smile crossed his lips as he saw Henry and Mary sitting outside. Henry sat at the patio table, a book clasped tightly in hands. Mary was babbling and cooing loudly, as her little, chubby arms flailed around like crazy.
"Sounds like she's saying something important." Graham nodded toward their daughter, before kissing his wife's lips.
"Yeah. She's been babbling the same stuff all morning. Pretty sure it means I miss daddy." Emma grinned, her eyebrows raising before she continued, "you smell suspiciously like a certain wolf-in-law of mine."
Graham hung his head, a mock look of hurt on his face. "I would never-" Emma gripped his chin and pulled his face up so that she was looking into his eyes.
"Aha! I knew it. You went to see Wolfie."
Graham sighed. "I needed a little alone time with my brother."
Emma chuckled. "It's fine." she waved her arm around, "really it is. However, I would like to take the kids somewhere fun before you head back to your sheriffing duties tomorrow." her lips puckered out as she pulled out Graham's perfected pout.
"Ugh!" Graham groaned out, throwing his hands up in the air, "fine. Where are we going?"
Emma smiled triumphantly. "You don't even fight it anymore."
"Is there a use in fighting it?" he asked, his eyebrow cocked slightly.
Emma placed a finger on her chin, her expression read deep thought. "Nope. No use whatsoever. So, I was thinking that we'd go visit my parents for a little while. It's been a bit, and my mom has practically been begging to see Mary."
Graham nodded. "Sounds great. Let me just shower and change, then we'll head out."
Emma smiled, before leaning up to press her lips to his. "Sounds like a plan."
The drive to Emma's parents was uneventful, as he pulled the car into a parking spot. Emma climbed out and retrieved Mary from her car-seat, while Graham opened the back door for Henry to hop out of. Together, with Mary sitting on Emma's hip, they walked up the steps to her parent's apartment. After a quick couple of knocks on the door, it opened to reveal a grinning Snow.
"Oh, Mary. I could just eat you up!" Snow giggled, as she extended her hands. Mary practically leapt into Snow's arms, as the rest of the family trudged in after Snow.
"Hi, dad." Emma called, as James came bounding down the steps from the loft bedroom.
"Emma!" James cried out, engulfing his daughter in a bone-crushing hug.
"Can't breathe." Emma choked out, as James finally released her. "You act like you haven't seen me in years, dad. It's been what—a week at the most?"
James chuckled, as a sheepish smile crossed his lips. "Sorry." he muttered before turning his attention to Henry. "How's my favorite grandson?"
Henry beamed at James. "Hi, grandpa." he answered before throwing his arms around James' waist.
James patted Graham's shoulder, before tickling Mary's stomach causing her to giggle. "That is a glorious sound."
Everyone nodded, as Snow finally sat Mary down on the floor. They watched as she crawled around, exploring her new surroundings. As she crawled her way into the living room, everyone followed suit. Graham and Emma collapsed on the couch, his arm around her shoulder with her head on his chest. Snow and James snugged up on the oversized chair, while Henry sat on the floor in-between both pieces of furniture. They sat in a comfortable silence for a few minutes.
"Mom! Dad!" Henry called out, pointing to Mary.
All four adults sat bolt upright as they watched as Mary slowly, carefully, pulled herself up from the floor using the coffee table to balance herself. She giggled loudly as she let go and attempted to step forward. She quickly lost her balance and landed on her behind. She wailed loudly, her small, chubby fists shaking as her scream emanated the air.
Graham stood up and pulled his daughter into his arms. "Shush, Mary. It's okay." he spoke soothingly, as he rocked her back and forth. Quickly her cries died out, and Graham sat down on the floor with her. "Wanna try again?" he asked his daughter. When she giggled, he sat her up on her feet and held onto her hands with his fingers.
Emma came to stand in front of them, phone in hand, as she video tapped it. "Come on, Mary. Come to mommy." Emma coaxed.
Once Graham was certain that his daughter was as sturdy as she was going to get, he let go of her hands. He watched as Mary slowly waddled her way toward Emma, who had tears streaming down her cheeks. Emma bent down and pulled Mary into her arms. "That's my good girl," Emma whispered.
Later on that night when the kids were in bed, Graham pulled on his pajama pants before crawling into bed. He felt Emma crawl in next to him, snuggling up on his chest. He ran his fingers through her hair. "Are you happy?" he asked suddenly.
Emma lifted her head off his chest so she could look at him. "Why would you ask something like that? Of course I'm happy. I-" she sighed. "I never thought it was possible for a person to have so much happiness in their life. I never thought it was possible for me to have so much happiness in my life."
Graham sighed. "I just wanted to make sure."
Emma leaned up and pressed her lips to Graham's cheek. "I've never been happier, Graham. I promise. Today-" she sighed contently, as she nuzzled back against his chest, "was just the icing on the cake. I missed out on all of this with Henry. I never got to see any of his firsts, so to be able to not only witness it with Mary, but to witness it with you. This has all completed my life, and made it fuller than I thought possible. You—the kids—my family, complete my life. I am no one, I am nothing without all of you. Never forget that."
Graham put his arms around Emma, squeezing her against his body. He placed a kiss to her hair. "I feel the exact same way." He felt her nod her head, as her breathing started to even out. "I love you, Emma Humbert."
"Mhmm. Love you too, Graham Humbert." Emma whispered before her eyes shut completely and sleep overtook her.
Emma moaned as she heard her daughter's cry in the night. She had finally fallen asleep but Mary woke her up and from the sounds of his snoring, Graham would not be waking up any time soon. She was about to get up when she felt his arms wrap around her waist.
He chuckled as he looked at his wife. "Ya think If we ignore her, she'll go back to sleep?"
She bit her lips as she gazed into his blue eyes. "I don't think it works like that, Graham"
Mary's wails had become louder and more frequent as she waited for one or both of her parents which caused Graham to chuckle a little. "That's all you, Emma."
She mocked a pout "I do not scream like that."
He kissed her lips as he spoke. "No, but she does have your impatient temper. You should check on her before she wakes up Henry."
He chuckled causing Emma to give him a momentary eyebrow raise. They both then realized she was quiet again, Graham smiled. "Ssh. I think she stopped."
The moment of quietness however was only temporary as Mary began to wail again this time however she did something that made both of her parents jump up immediately in the mist of one of her screams she wailed out. "Dadddyyy!" Tears welled up in Emma's eyes as she looked into Graham's eyes.
"Did she just?"
"Dadddddyyyyy!" the young child wailed again.
A slow tear fell from Graham's eye as well. "I think so, because she said it again."
His heart swelled with pride as his little girl continued to call for him "Daddy! Daddy! Daddy!"
Emma smiled as he leapt out of bed. She, herself, was two steps behind him. Pride on her own face as he spoke. "Daddy's coming, princess"
Emma smiled as she stood in the doorway watching father and daughter. Her heart rushed as he spoke "So, my little princess figured out how to say daddy." he beamed proudly.
She had been Daddy's little girl since the moment she was born. It was only fitting that daddy would be her first word. She continued to smile as she stepped into the room wrapping her arm around Graham's waist, her head resting on his shoulder as she watched Mary snuggle into his chest. With her thumb in her mouth, she cooed as she gurgled out. "Daddy." one last time before falling back asleep in his arms.
Emma sighed dreamily as she looked at them "You know the minute you put her back into that crib she'll wake up again."
Graham nodded his head as he answered. "I do know, which is why she's sleeping with us." He held Emma's hand with his free hand, while cradling Mary with the other. He led his little family into their bedroom.
Once there Emma marveled at how beautiful their child was. She grinned as she spoke. "She really looks like you, you know." Emma softly fingered Mary's brown curls.
He smiled as he looked at Emma then kissed Mary's head. "So I keep hearing."
Emma smiled as she heard Mary gurgle and coo in her sleep. "Makes you kinda wanna have another one doesn't it?"
Graham raised an eyebrow as he looked at his wife. "You wanna have another baby?" He questioned her in shock.
She giggled a little at the expression he had given her "Well, not this very second. Geeze, Graham. Relax." she chuckled, then added, "I just mean in a few years we could try again. I mean if you wanted to."
He smiled as he kissed Emma's head. "Of course, princess. One that will look exactly like you." he answered, watching as Emma once again fell asleep.