Disclaimer: I am not ABC or Disney, so I own nothing, not Once Upon a Time or its characters. But if I did... ;)

Title: Backlash

Summary: In which Hook goes to see Emma in the hospital against other's warnings/wishes.

Pairing: Captain Swan, Emma x Killian Jones| Hook

Word Count: 2027

Author's Note: 6/7/13 sorry for the even longer wait! hopefully the next will come quicker. Enjoy :)


viii.

"So we burst into colors, colors and carousels,
Fall head first like paper planes in playground games"

- "Starry Eyed" Ellie Goulding


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"You okay love?"

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Hook smells like rum and spice and saltwater. It's something unique, a scent so entirely him and for the life of her, Emma cannot figure out why it's as appealing to her as it is.

His arms are wrapped around her as he holds up her weight and Emma's heart is racing. Her skin isbuzzing. Her stomach is tied up in knots.

She can't pinpoint when exactly his presence had started mattering so much (maybe it always had, she fears) What she does know, though, is that she wants for it to stop.

"Okay… enough," Emma forces out, pushing against his chest and doing her best not to look him in the face. It depends, she reminds herself, dependsdepends, he'd said."I'm fine."

Hook's grip loosens slightly but he doesn't release her. Instead he gives Emma a once over; taking in her flushed face, her tousled hair, her precarious footing in her boots, and raises one brow questioningly. "You sure? Maybe you should sit back down," and because he can't help himself when she's this close, he grins, suddenly lighthearted, his blue eyes focused on her face. Emma's stomach flips,"Thought you'd have a better tolerance love," he jokes.

Emma frowns. And maybe it's the fact that even with her "superpower" she can't make out if he really cares (and what kind of a superpower is it really, when it wont even fucking work when her emotions get in the way) — or maybe what it really is is that she can't convince herself that he doesn't (no matter how much she tries to)— that's getting to her so much.

But she can't take it anymore.

"I'm fine," Emma snaps, repeating herself and ripping her waist entirely out of Hook's grasp. She takes a few, greatly unbalanced, but determined steps backwards, "I can handle myself," she spits, head spinning.

A look of confusion— and maybe hurt but Emma wont acknowledge that— flashes over Hook's face. It's gone a second later. "All right," he says slowly, silently lowering his outstretched arms. (And for a moment, despite the situation, Emma applauds that even though he'd been caught off guard, he'd managed not to run her through with his hook when she'd pulled away like she had.)

"Whatever you want," he answers back tensely. Meeting her disdain with the guard of an icy tone (because it's safer than meeting it with an affected one), "I'll remember how well you can handle yourself the next time you take a tumble princess."

Emma brushes herself off, still avoiding his gaze the best she can. A part of her knows he'd just helped her face avoid a collision with the floor but she still has no business feeling guilty. He's the one who should feel guilty— "Yeah, make sure you do," she bites back.

(a pause)

His anger seems to be matched by exasperation.

"Did I miss something?" Hook asks, gesturing towards the lingering cash dropped on their table. Emma barely glances at it."I'm guessing that that," he continues, "along with your wonderful new attitude, must mean you're done then?"

Emma gives him a tight smile.

"I think I've had my fill for one night."

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And when she's gone, successfully managing to find her way out this time, there is no question that what she'd had her fill of was not the rum.

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"So, through with me are you?" Hook shouts, following at her heels. "What? Things got too hard on you back there? You know the feeling wasn't exactly one-sided love!"

Emma doesn't bother turning to answer.

"One would think that you'd get the whole 'being done with you' thing when I let the door hit you on my way out."

As Hook laughs a bit (in a terribly humorless way) Emma wraps her arms around herself a little tighter. In her rush, (to flee— to escape) it just so happens she had left her coat behind. Emma can picture it, laying innocently in the diner booth, and it's unfortunate for her since it's now freezing outside. She had been right, of course, (about him, about the world, about how foolish she is, about everything) it had been going to storm and the winds and the rain seem to pick up more by the minute.

"Well if history proves right," Hook says, voice straining to be louder than the tempest, "We both know how much you love playing rough, you can't fault a man for being a tad confused."

She decides it's not even worth it to reply to that.

Suffice it to say, Emma is finding it really hard to storm away when Hook won't let her and a deluge of rain is blinding her with every heated step she takes. She's being soaked to the bone.

She has no idea how long he's going to keep at it. Despite that Hook is far more equipped for the weather in his long leather coat and he seems to be less inebriated than she is (she is not in denial that she is going to have one hell of a hangover in the morning), it shouldn't take very long. He obviously doesn't care that much. He is leaving her anyway (well, she guesses since "it depends"—whatever the fuck that means. And was that the first time she'd let herself think of it in that way, not just him leaving but him leaving her? she supposes she's not in denial about a lot of things).

"Don't think a little rain is going to discourage me Swan, I've lived at sea," Hook says as if he's read her mind, "This is a day at the beach for me love and the view your giving me walking off as you are… that's certainly not a deterrent."

Emma's jaw clenches. She's honestly trying very hard to ignore him. For a second she even entertains the thought of knocking him out again but decides that it might be just a bit too childish for her tastes. She's not even going in any particular direction anymore, in fact Emma's sure she's heading in the complete opposite direction of her apartment but anywhere is fine as long as it's anywhere that he isn't.

Hook continues to follow, growing tense and upset at her valiant but utterly useless attempt to ignore him. He has yet to find out the things that he wanted to know and after all that has happened thus far tonight, he is no less determined to get the information out of her. Emma should know by now that once he's set his mind to something nothing is going to get in his way.

"If you were so sensitive you shouldn't have never played the game."

And Emma tries to let it bounce off her like she's allowed everything else to but it's just so— so maddening that this, this is what's bothering him— this is what he's worried about. Emma closes her eyes briefly, clenching her fists. She cannot believe—

When she spins to face him, it is with a look of incredulity on her face.

"Are you seriously still talking about that dumb fucking drinking game?" Emma shouts.

Hook tilts his head, taking in her irate visage mostly smug. Obviously he's satisfied that he's at least gotten her to speak and this just makes Emma that much angrier.

"We had a deal. I didn't take you as a quitter lass."

Emma's eyes are wild.

"This isn't a game Hook! I'm not playing, don't you get that?" And despite herself, Emma can feel a pressure behind her eyes, a stinging high in her nose. It wasn't a game to her. As much as she'd tried to tell herself it didn't matter, that she didn't care— and if even one tear falls, someone will pay for it. "I neverwas!"

Her yell has the opposite effect that she thought it would. Hook doesn't back away like any sane person would but instead edges forward, stepping further into her space. His hair is sticking to his forehead and he's looking down at her with fire in his eyes and a look ripe with too many things to consider.

"Fine," Hook says, voice even but quiet. "It was never about the game… maybe it wasn't for me either, but that begs the question, why would you agree to it? Or better yet, why did you not try and get rid of me the moment I appeared? You wanted me there. Why?"

Emma watches a rain drop glide down his cheek into the stubble lining in jaw, breath catching, words lodged in her throat.

I wanted you to prove that feeling how I feel isn't a mistake.

I wanted you to prove me wrong.

I wanted you.

Emma grinds her teeth together holding it all in.

"What makes you think I would care anything about you Hook?" Emma snaps, aiming for nonchalance, for carelessness— but even she can tell she's missed it by miles."Why would I ever want anything from you? I was just bored and you were there."

Hook blinks and then looks away— and for a second Emma thinks that maybe the ruse has worked, that maybe she's made him believe it and he will finally leave her alone, crawl his way out from underneath her skin— but then he turns back giving her a grim smile.

"You might be good at telling when other people are lying Swan… but you're horrible at it yourself."

And— really? Emma wants to spit at him, really because this is the first fucking time she's heard of it in her 28 years of living and lying and manipulating and doing whatever it took to survive while she was alone.

But instead, she scoffs because that's the safer option.

"You're delusional," she replies, and she tries to turn away again— she does—but Hook reaches out and grabs her arm and he is lucky that he has grabbed her right because Emma is beginning to care less about the childishness of leaving him unconscious.

"And you're lying again," Hook whispers, blinking away the rain from his eyes.

"I'm not—"

But he cuts her off.

"Tell me Emma."

It's said in a different voice, in a voice that she wouldn't dare to call desperate because she wouldn't dare to question what that would mean. It feels as if he's pleading with her but Emma just— she can't. Her free arm reaches over to where he's grasped her right one and she fists the handful of leather that makes up Hook's sleeve.

"Let me go Hook." And the words leave her lips as clear as anything ever has. Emma just wishes that she meant them.

It is seconds, minutes, hours, that Hook seems to look at her after that, that he stares, seemingly searching for something. And Emma keeps her face as blank as she can, bites her tongue to keep from spilling everything.

She can taste rainwater in her mouth and swears that there's a hint of rum, of spice, of saltwater. Her eyelashes are clumping together, their breaths are meeting in the middle as white smoke, twisting, mixing between them. Her heart is beating so loud in her ears that Emma can no longer even hear the storm.

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"No Emma, I won't," he finally says, voice calm and sure (like he'd finally found what he'd been looking for) and Emma's not exactly sure what they're even talking about anymore but she can feel the truth in it.

He won't let her go.

But how can that be real?

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"How can you leave?" The words are hollow and soft. Emma doesn't like hearing herself sound this way but there's not much of a way around it anymore now is there? "How can you justify doing something like that, knowing that you broke the curse?"

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And the immediate crinkling of Hook's brow, of the confusion that settles so plainly on his face sends Emma's heart spiraling higher and higher—

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"… knowing that I did what?"

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