Once upon a time

Chapter 3

"Alright when we reach the cell stay out of the light and whatever you do, do not let him know what your name is alright?" Arthur nodded at Williams' words before looking to his wife who stood beside him.

"Oh lighten up Artie everything will be fine" William teased and Snow grinned. He, however, simply frowned staring back at his best friend,

"We shouldn't be going down there. There's a reason he's been put down there alone" he whispered fiercely,

"You and I know that more than anyone" he said glaring,

"Ah what we do for our women huh mate" William winked at Snow who smiled,

"Thankyou Eames" she whispered and leant forward to kiss his cheek. When she fell back on the balls of her feet she turned to Arthur and ran a hand over his tensed jaw,

"It will be alright Arthur, between you and Eames nothing's ever going to happen to us, not to mention the others trailing us" she gestured to the guards that would be standing not so far away, simply out of earshot. She pressed a kiss to his lips before walking past him and William and towards the heavy, iron doorway that led to the dungeons,

"Even if I can take care of myself" both Arthur and William could only smirk at her words both shaking their heads. Arthur caught her by the hand tugging her back to him before pulling up her hood and she smiled at him,

"Alright just remember not to mention your names. He knows your names he has power over you. Alright darlings?" they nodded and Snow gripped Arthur's hand.

"You thought of any more names for that delightful little godson of mine" Eames whispered as the three headed through the narrow pathways,

"You're going to be awfully upset when we ask someone else to be godfather aren't you Mr Eames" the guard poked her in the side and she could only laugh,

"Now is not really the best time to be discussing this don't you think?" Arthur asked in a strained voice,

"I'm just saying Eames…it's a good strong name I think" Snow laughed again and they fell into a comfortable silence as they walked deeper underground. As they neared closer Eames walked ahead of Arthur and Snow – leaving the couple to follow. His voice was darker and harder when Snow heard it next, not used to anything but his teasing and joyful tones,

"Rumplestiltskin" he called to the darkness before him,

"Rumplestiltskin" he yelled louder,

"I have a question for you" Snow squinted, ignoring Arthur's hand tightening around her own, as the little light in the place left the cell in shadows. Eames lit several of the torches on the wall with his own flames before moving closer.

"No you don't" his voice was certainly not the menacing one of the queens yet it was far from the kind sound of Arthur or Eames' voices.

"They do" he continued,

"Snow White and Prince Charming or should I say Ariadne White and Arthur Charming" while his voice did not scare her she knew that the high pitched laughter that came from the cell would chill her bones,

"You insult me. Step into the light and take off those ridiculous robes" he said. Snow lifted her arms to pull her hood down noticing Eames and Arthur tensing and stepping forward slightly.

"Aha..that's much better" the voice crooned and sent a shiver up her spine,

"We want to know about th—" Arthur started stepping forward,

"YES YES I KNOW WHY YOU'RE HERE" Snow jumped and Arthur flinched at the loud, angry interruption,

"Yes..you want to know about the queens threat" he said a moment later and Snow could just see his fingers curl around the cells bars.

"Tell us what you know" she demanded

"Ohh…tense aren't we?" he asked and she frowned,

"Fear not..for I can ease your mind" he laughed

"But…" he said as he took a step to the side,

"It's going to cost you" the light shone on him and Snow's eyes widened as she took in the infamous Rumplestiltskin. His skin seemed to sparkle and appeared rough like leather. He was a sickly green colour and his hair hung limply around his gaunt face. His teeth were yellowed and crooked.

"NO" Arthur yelled,

"This is a waste of time" he said but Snow moved forward ripping her hand from Arthur's grasp,

"What do you want?" she wouldn't come here not to get her answers. She needed to know if her child, her baby would be safe. She knew the power the queen possessed and she knew what the queen would do, could do to her child. And more than anything she knew the queen had reason to. She had to get her answer.

Immediately Arthur and Eames moved forward to crowd her on either side her husband pulling her back slightly. His laughter filled the room and she looked up into his excited eyes. He leant down until he was eye level before he spoke,

"The name of your unborn child is all" he said and laughed once again,

"Absolutely not!" Arthur stated from between his teeth,

"DEAL" she yelled and she watched Rumplestiltskin's eyes widen with delight. She could already feel Arthur's outrage and Eames' surprise. She simply glared at the prisoner,

"What do you know" she demanded. He sighed before answering,

"The queen has created a powerful curse…..and it's coming. Soon you'll all be in a prison. Just like me! Only worse. See your prison, all of our prisons, will be time, time will stop and we will be trapped someplace horrible where everything we hold dear, everything we love will be ripped from us while we suffer for all eternity. While the queen celebrates victorious at last. No more happy endings" Snow swallowed and nodded taking in the words,

"What can we do?" she asked,

"We can't do anything" he screeched back to her and she cringed,

"Who can?" Rumplestiltskin simply grinned to her and reached a hand outside the bars,

"That thing that's growing inside your belly dearie" before his fingers could even graze her stomach Arthur had his sword drawn and stuck this wrist before stepping forward,

"Next time I cut it off" he growled while Eames pulled Snow back several steps. Rumplestiltskin only tisked several times before laughing again as if giddy,

"The infant is our only hope, get the child to safety. Get the child to safety and on its twenty-eighth birthday the child will return, the child will find you and the final battle will begin"

"We've heard enough we're leaving" Arthur snapped and grabbed Snow's hand before turning to leave. She didn't fight him this time shocked by what she'd heard. She gripped her husbands hand as they walked,


"Her?" Arthur called back,

"It's a boy"

"No….Ariadne, Ariadne, Snow? Come on you know I'm right don't you?" Snow froze in her spot and turned slowly to face him once more,

"What's her name to be?"

"Emma. Her name is Emma" Snow said and then turned and stalked away from the cell promising herself never to visit again. She heard heavy footsteps behind her but didn't slow.

It was dark when they entered Storybrooke, pitch black. The headlights had shone onto the sign,

'Welcome to Storybrooke'

The town was small and Emma supposed that everyone would be asleep. Certainly different from the city. No cars, no lights. And within four blocks it seemed they were in town centre.

"Alright kid what about an address" she said glancing towards Henry who was curled up in the passenger seat a very satisfied look on his face,

"24th not telling you street" he answered smartly and she could not help the way her foot hit the brake and the small, yellow voltswagon skidded to a stop in the middle of the deserted intersection. She threw her door open as she breathed deeply and climbed out running a hand through her hair. She heard Henry follow suit and took another deep breath,

"Look it's been a long, long night and it's almost…" she peered up the clock tower in front of her only to frown,

"8:15?" she finished in disbelief,

"That clock hasn't moved my whole life" Henry said,

"Time's frozen here" she raised an eyebrow turning to him,

"Excuse me?"

"The evil queen did it with her curse. She sent everyone from the enchanted forest here" Henry explained simply.

"Wait so an evil queen sent a bunch of fairytale characters here?" Emma asked as she crossed her arms over her chest,

"Yeah!" Henry nodded as if he was glad she'd understood,

"And now they're trapped"

"Frozen in time, stuck in Storybrooke Maine? That's what you're going with?" she asked,

"It's true!" Henry cried his face creasing into a frown,

"Ok so why doesn't everyone just leave?" she asked,

"They can't when they leave bad things happen" she nodded and went to answer when they were interrupted,

"Henry! Henry what are you doing here is everything alright?" a man called out and Emma turned to watch the red-haired man jog across the road towards them,

"Everything's fine Archie" Henry said waving slightly to the man,

"Who's this?" Archie asked and she smiled,

"Just someone trying to give him a ride home" Emma answered quickly,

"She's my Mum" Henry said,

"Oh, I see" there was a beat of silence,

"Uh so do you know where he lives?" Emma asked and only just refrained from crossing her fingers,

"Oh yeah, just up on Mason street, the Mayors house is the biggest on the block. Emma felt her mouth open once again that night and turned to Henry,

"You're the mayors kid?" she asked and he shuffled looking at the ground,

"maybe" he mumbled,

"Hey where were you today Henry – you missed your session" Archie asked,

"Oh yeah I forgot to tell you I went on a fieldtrip" Archie nodded before crouching down in front of the boy,

"Hey Henry what did I tell you about lying. Giving in to one's dark side never accomplishes anything" he said quickly and Emma turned to the man in surprise,

"Oh- kay well I really should be getting him home" she interrupted and Archie stood,

"Yeah, no problem. Well I'll see you around. Be good Henry. It was lovely to meet you" Emma smiled and watched him walk away for several seconds before turning back to Henry.

"Sooo..that's your shrink?" she asked,

"I'm not crazy"

"I didn't say that" she defended,

"He just doesn't seem very cursed to me" she explained,

"Maybe he's just trying to help"

"He's the one who needs the help, not me, he doesn't know" Henry said with frustration,

"That he's a fairytale character?" Emma asked skeptically,

"None of them do, they don't remember who they are" with that Henry turned and walked back around to his side of the car,

"Ok convenient…but I'll play who's he supposed to be?"

"Jimminy Cricket" Emma stopped hand on the door handle. She couldn't help but be amazed at the depth of the kids story.

"Oh of course the lying I thought I saw your nose grow a little bit" she said grinning,

"I'm not Pinocchio" Henry said with a frown,

"Of course you aren't….because that would be ridiculous" she said and Henry just let out a groan slumping in his seat.

"I SAY WE FIGHT!" Arthur yelled and Eames to his side nodded. He glanced at Snow sitting in the chair on his other side her thoughts a million miles away. She had been quiet since they'd returned from visiting Rumplestiltskin and he'd been distracted gathering there most trusted to meet urgently.

"Fighting is a bad idea, giving into one's dark side never accomplishes anything" Arthur looked down to the cricket that sat on the table,

"And how many wars has a clear conscience won?" Arthur shot back,

"We need to take the queen out before she can inflict her curse" Arthur explained,

"There's no point" her voice was smaller than it usually was and it pained him to hear her so distressed. He turned to his wife who stared up at him,

"There's no point, the future has already been written"

"No Snow good can't just lose"

"Maybe it can"

Disclaimer: inception not mine, once upon a time not mine.