"This isn't working." She glared into the mirror, refusing to define the emotion she felt as grumpy.
Behind her on the bed, Emma lazily stretched and ran a hand through her hair, causing it to fall, perfectly tousled, around her face. "What isn't working?"
She glared at Emma, this time. "My hair."
She watched Emma glance at the ceiling and mutter something under her breath. "You look fine Regina. You don't have time to fuss, Henry's going to be here in ten minutes."
She felt irritation spike, strong and hot. "You told me thirty minutes!"
Emma smirked at her. "Yeah, but I knew you'd be ready early and spend the next twenty minutes freaking out, so this works out best for everyone." She slid off the bed, bounced over to plant a kiss on Regina's cheek. "You look gorgeous, as usual. Stop worrying."
She jerked away, childishly pleased when Emma frowned. "It's not every day I tell my son I'm in a relationship, Miss Swan. And I do not freak out."
Emma raised a brow. "You wouldn't say that if you could see yourself while you're 'not freaking out'." She reached out, trailed a fingernail down the back of Regina's neck. "In fact, I do seem to recall making you freak out just last night. Three times."
She glared at Emma while she fought not to blush. "Don't flatter yourself that you're being endearing, Miss Swan. I think aggravating and annoying are far more appropriate."
Emma laid a warm hand on her shoulder. "Regina."
She succumbed to the gentle pressure and turned around to meet eyes full of understanding that she still wasn't entirely sure how to respond to. "What?"
"It'll be okay. Henry's a smart kid, he'll figure out that it's fairly likely we aren't going to kill each other in the foreseeable future. Our son will understand that we're in a relationship. You're not alone."
She heard the emphasis and the warning both in those words. Henry would be dealing with both of them as a team from now on, on a greater level than he had been. She'd have to deal with them as a team. "We just keep adding more layers to this entanglement, don't we?"
Emma cupped her cheek, and she placed her hand over it. "Keeps life interesting."
Emma's phone buzzed and she flipped it open. "He's here, Mary Margaret just dropped him off. I'll let him in, you straighten up."
She frowned. "Why do I need-" She broke off as Emma kissed her, warm and reassuring. She sank into the kiss, feeling her irritation drain away at the sensation of Emma's mouth on hers. Then she snarled as she felt Emma's hands snake into her carefully styled hair and ruffle, hard. She fought the urge to throw something at Emma's retreating back as she broke away and scooted out of the room. "I'll get you for that!" She called, grabbing her comb, knowing she'd have no time to redo the whole style over.
"And my little dog, too?" Emma called back, and she gritted her teeth while she fought not to smile. She heard the front door open and close as she worked to repair Emma's damage, hearing the tone of Henry's voice as excitement; the tone of Emma's as amused. Her family. The thought came unbidden, and try as she might she couldn't deny the surge of pleasure it brought.
She paced slowly downstairs, delighted as Henry turned to face her the moment she stepped into the living room.
"Guess what, Mom!"
She met Emma's gaze, saw the nerves, quickly hidden. "What, dear?"
"I get to babysit Pongo for a whole week! Archie's working on a book so he asked me if I wanted to take care of him – cool, huh? I'm going to teach him to skateboard – I mean, sit."
She looked at Emma again. "This is your influence."
Emma shrugged, trying and failing not to grin. "Hey, skateboarding dogs are cool. Pongo could become an internet sensation."
She fought the urge to roll her eyes, smiled at Henry. "It's a great responsibility to look after another living creature Henry - I'm very proud that Archie asked you."
Henry smiled at her. "Thanks, Mom." His gaze shifted between them. "Emma said you guys wanted to talk to me about something? We've probably spent enough time on small talk."
Emma laughed. "Totally your kid, Regina."
She tried to glare at Emma but ended up laughing, sinking down onto the couch so that Henry was between herself and Emma. "We do have something to tell you, Henry." She met Emma's gaze over the top of Henry's head, knowing Emma could read the fear in her eyes. "You see, Emma and I have become...friends...over the last few months. Do you believe that?" She stopped, waited for Henry to mull this over.
Henry nodded. "You guys definitely don't yell at each other as much."
Emma's lips twitched. "Which is a good thing because we all know how much your Mom enjoys yelling at me."
She pressed her lips together. "I don't yell at you. You yell at me."
Emma smirked. "Come on Regina, you know that it's just not Tuesday unless you've raked me over the coals for something."
About to retort, she noticed Henry's amusement at the conversation. "We don't yell as much at each other, dear. Only when Emma can't keep her mouth shut, which is unfortunately most of the time."
Henry just shook his head with all the world-weariness of the young. "Can we go get something to eat if you're just going to avoid telling me what you were going to tell me?"
Their eyes met again, and she watched Emma take a deep breath. "Listen, kid, your Mom and I are friends. We actually...well, we're kind of..."
She jumped in. "What Emma means to say is that, over the course of the last few months, Emma and I have started to... " She stopped. Started again. "What we'd like to tell you is that-"
Henry interjected. "You're dating."
She blinked, saw Emma's expression looking just as shocked as she felt. "How did you know?"
Henry rolled his eyes. "I'm eleven. I figured it out."
"And...how do you feel about it?" Emma ventured.
Henry shrugged. "I love you both and I want you both to be happy. And I don't want the town to blow up if you have a fight."
Hearing the fear underneath the flippancy, she pulled Henry into a hug. "That's not going to happen." She met Emma's gaze, smiled. "I promise."
Emma put her arm around her shoulders, rested her palm on Henry's back. "We promise."
She smiled. "We promise."
Henry drew back, then looked at Emma. "I knew there was a reason you kept making up excuses to visit her."
Emma's mouth dropped upon as she looked at Henry, avoiding Regina's gaze. "I didn't make up excuses."
Henry just looked at her. "You had to help Mom organise her nail polish collection?"
She couldn't help it. She snorted, and they both looked at her. "You're kidding."
Emma shrugged, blushing. "It was a spur of the moment thing."
Henry punched Emma lightly in the shoulder. "Does this mean I get to go to bed later tonight? As a reward for putting up with all your sneaking around?"
She dug her fingers into Henry's ribs, laughing as he twisted, trying to escape the tickling. "Don't push your luck, young man."
Emma eyed her, then Henry as she let up. "You know, I bet we could convince your Mom to let you stay up late this once."
Henry perked up. "Really?"
She sniffed. "I highly doubt it, Miss Swan."
Emma just grinned at her, lazily. "Did you know your Mom is ticklish, Henry?"
She stiffened, knowing the look on Emma's face spelt trouble for her. "I still forbid a later bedtime, Miss Swan. Your threats don't scare me."
"Well, that's good, because I'd say you have about three seconds to make a run for it before we both gang up on you, right, Henry?"
Henry nodded, delight that she hadn't seen in a long time filling his expression. "Right."
She met Emma's gaze. "I will get you for this."
Emma shrugged."I know. Two."
As she broke and ran, hearing Henry's delighted yell behind her, she thought that as long as she could keep these two, just these two, everything just might turn out to be quite satisfactory.
A/N: I really, really like Happy Regina. Also, thank you so much for all your kind and wonderful and funny and charming reviews – I'm very grateful. XD