Chapter 1: Meet the Mother

"No, be careful!" Emma cried out, as the soldiers tossed the unconscious Mary Margaret to the floor of the dirty cell.
"Mary Margaret! Mary Margaret!" Emma frantically shook her, as the jail door slammed shut behind them. Emma released a brief sob and sat back on heels, unsure of what to do.
"Do you need help?" a voice called from the darkness.

Emma flinched in surprise and looked up to meet the gaze of a strange woman. "Who are you?"
"A friend." The woman stepped fully into the dim light of the cell. "My name is Cora."

Emma watched suspiciously as Cora bent down to take a closer look at Mary Margaret. "Why, if it isn't Snow White!" she breathed in surprise.

"You know who she is?" Emma gasped in surprise.
"Of course! I met her many, many years ago." Cora told her, smiling mysteriously, "What's your name, dear?"

"Emma Swan." She offered her wrists to Cora, asking without speaking for some help.

Cora obliged immediately and untied the rope around Emma's wrist. As soon as she was undone, Emma untied Snow's wrists and tried in vain to rouse her. "They seem to have hit her fairly hard. I hope they didn't do any permanent damage." Cora assessed coolly, as she watched Emma's futile attempts to awaken Snow.

"We have to do something! She might have a concussion!" Emma panicked.
"Here, let me try something, dear." Cora knelt down next to her and touched the side of Snow's face. Emma watched as Cora's hand glowed blue against Snow's flesh. Emma gasped and without thinking grabbed at Cora's hand to snatch it away. A red hot spark jumped from Cora's flesh to Emma's and she jumped back with a yelp of pain.
"No need for a fuss. I'm only trying to help, dear." Cora explained and finally removed her hand.

"No offense, but could you please stop calling me 'dear.'" Emma complained as she massaged the pain out of her hand.
"Why?" Cora asked absently, as she watched Snow for signs of wakefulness.

"Because it's what Regina calls me and it's annoying."

Cora's head snapped up like a snake at the sound of the name and her eyes narrowed as she gazed at Emma with a very different kind of expression. "What was that name?"
Before Emma could respond, there was a low moan, and Snow stirred. "uhnnn...where is my daughter?" Snow's head rolled to the side and her eyes opened.

The first thing she saw was her daughter staring at her hopefully. "Emma!"
"I'm here." Emma reassured her.
The next second Snow recoiled as she realized who was standing over her. "Cora!" she whisper-shrieked.

A smirk had stretched across Cora's face as all the pieces came together in her mind and she fully understood who Emma was and where she must have come from. She grasped Snow by the throat and pulled her to her feet. Emma screamed in fury, but suddenly found herself pinned mercilessly to the wall by Cora's magic. Cora's fingers tightened around Snow's delicate neck as she struggled to breathe. "Stop it!" Emma screamed and struggled uselessly, "I'll kill you!"

"I think not." Cora watched her with amusement. "But we will take your mother with us anyway...to ensure your good behavior."


ya, so I thought I'd post this before we see the new episode and find out what really happens. :) Please review!