Rating: PG, fluff
Disclaimer: These characters are not my creative property
Summary: Prompt: Wow. For my 600th Follower.
A/N: I've never played World of Warcraft so I have no idea what all goes on it- I assume you slaughter chickens? Thanks to Scribes for the suggestion. This takes place when Henry is 14 and assumes no real curse. I constantly hear from my friends with teenagers how difficult it is to get them to take showers.
"Congratulations, thanks to you we have another problem with Henry," Emma explained while Regina paced her kitchen nervously.
"What?" Regina's voice sounded sharp and fearful. They had just gotten him weaned off the idea that fairytales were real and now Emma was dredging up a new way for him to hate Regina- that much was apparent.
"Kid's a super nerd. Like dorkasaurus. He just sits in his room all the time playing that Warcraft World game- that you continue to pay for," Emma said in an accusatory manner, leaning close and watching Regina as they stared one another down.
"He's at that age where he needs his alone time," Regina cocked her head and swallowed, her eyes turned downward as she rationalized Henry's behavior. She moved back to the sink and grabbed her dish towel where she continued to dry plates with a bit more vigor than necessary.
"Regina he hasn't showered in a week! You need to get him out of that room, and get him- outside or something!" Emma threw her arms up and rolled her eyes feeling appalled that Regina didn't see the problem.
"I think the real issue that the novelty of having a shiny new mom has worn off, and you're upset because he no longer jumps at the chance to do things with you," Regina's voice remained even, her lip turned upward in a half-smile.
Emma sighed in exasperation, "That's not it. It would be nice if we went for hikes and out for ice cream like we used to, but I'm mainly worried about Henry here. He's addicted to that stupid game, and that's not even the worst part!"
"What's the worst part?" Regina ruffled her brow in confusion, stepping up to calm Emma. She could see how much she believed that Henry had a problem and now Regina was having a hard time denying it. Henry did spend an inordinate amount of time in his room.
"He's terrible at the game," Emma half-sighed, half-whispered in conspiratorial secret. "Seriously, he's like running his dumb troll guy into walls constantly. He hasn't even made it past a level and he plays all of the time. What does that mean?"
"I don't know," Regina stared ahead, her expression glum. If Henry was going to throw himself into something with conviction he should excel at it. "I do know that we need to solve this problem."
"So we take away his computer, you cancel his subscription and I'll delete his account," Emma said with a resolute sense of practicality.
"No, I think we need to get him lessons. Find someone who knows the game who can teach Henry to be a winner," Regina waved her index finger in the air as she contemplated who would know role-play games.
Emma followed her around the room, "Come on, Regina. It doesn't bother you that he's becoming a total geek and obsessing over that game, but it bothers you that he can't slaughter so much as one chicken correctly?"
"Yes! I will encourage Henry's interests as long as he is progressing, and I know just who to ask to help him become a master Warcrafter- Tom Clark, I know he is fond of that game," Regina's eyes lit up when it occurred to her.
"The drug store guy, who is allergic to everything? You want Henry to be a dweeb?" Emma placed her hands on her hips and stared at Regina dumbfounded before a thought popped in her head. "You're just so glad he's not hating on you, that you want to keep Henry distracted so he continues to forget how much he doesn't like you."
"No—you're the selfish one, wanting to take Henry away all the time to go fishing—and why is it, Ms. Swan he's so fond of fishing with you, yet I can't get him to help me plant even one gladiola bulb? Hmm? What did you tell him?" Regina looked a little paranoid now, her edges unraveling. She briskly ran a hand through her hair and faced Emma.
"I didn't brainwash him against you, but that game is gonna if we don't put an end to it," Emma was so used to Regina's accusations and conspiracy theories she let them roll off like water.
"Fine. I will flip the power switch, while you coax him to take a shower," Regina smoothed her hands down the front of her outfit and prepared herself to storm her dorky son's bedroom.
"Okkkaayy," Emma bounced on her heels, only feeling a brief pang of annoyance that she was designated as the one to get him into the shower.
Regina knocked on the door, "Henry?"
No answer. Regina and Emma looked at each other worriedly, and knocked again.
"Go away, I'm busy," Henry's crackly deep voice answered.
"Oh no, Kid- you need to come out here now. Your mom and I need to talk to you," Emma tried to pull her best authoritative voice, then whispered to Regina, "you should have never let him play all that Mario Kart- now look what you've done!"
Henry stayed silent, but from within they could hear the faint sounds of the game beeping with defeat as Henry's avatar failed to slaughter another chicken.
"That's it," Emma braced her arm and hit the door like police style to bust it down. She fell backwards and landed on her ass.
"Noble effort, dear, but it's unlocked…" Regina helped Emma up and they simply twisted the knob to the open the door and see what horror awaited them.
Just Henry, glued to the computer, empty soda cans and bags of Doritos littered the messy unkempt floor of his room. Regina was appalled, she frantically reached for the trash, she had no idea he was living in such squalor.
"Stick to the plan," Emma reminded through clenched teeth.
"Oh," Regina looked like she was going to be sick, but she crossed the room, nearly tripping over a pizza delivery box and pulled the whole surge protector out from the wall outlet.
"Hey!" Henry whined in anger as the screen clicked off, the last thing he saw was a chicken run free- un-slaughtered.
Emma grabbed him under his arms and pulled him up, "God, kid you need a shower now. You reek!"
Henry was getting tall, but he was still extremely skinny, he protested some more, but Emma held him tight, and motioned for Regina to pick up his gangly feet. They carried him to the bathroom and shut him in.
"You can come out when you're clean….next week," Regina sing-songed and turned a skeleton key in the door, effectively locking Henry inside. Eventually, they heard the shower to start to run.
"Henry, be sure to use soap…everywhere," Emma yelled before following Regina into his room, while she cleaned up his sordid gaming nest, Emma hopped on the computer and swiftly deleted the WoW account.
"Shouldn't we keep him off the internet all together?" Regina pursed her lips thinking they should take his whole computer away.
"Nah, kid needs to be able to look at porn at least," Emma chuckled but Regina couldn't tell if she was joking or serious and started to feel dizzy.
"Do you see why I prefer to not know what is going on in here?" Regina stammered as she furiously filled a hamper with dirty, crusty clothes.
"Well, he's growing up, and this-"Emma gestured around the dirty room, "-is all part of the fun."
"Yes, well…thank you, Emma. I am glad you're here to help...on occasion," Regina conceded and gave Emma a genuine smile. Emma smiled back, "my pleasure."
Their moment was interrupted when they heard Henry yelling that he was ready to come out of the bathroom. Emma stomped out in the hall and pounded on the bathroom door, "It hasn't even been ten minutes, get your ass back under that shower!"