Here we are again, at the ending of yet another story... it feels like yesterday when TMWA was ending and I didn't want it to, just like I don't want this story to end. It's been wonderful and I loved each and every one of your reviews, (but especially Irene's) so thank you for sharing the feels with me, even when it seemed too much. I'm already working on my next story, so hopefully I'll see you in a couple of weeks, when there's going to be even more feels to cry about. The mix that goes with this fic can be found on my tumblr (montanarosalie) and it's tagged fanmix, so check that out if you ever miss this fic or want to revisit the feels.
Two years later
Emma clears the table in the kitchen after lunch, still unable to believe that she only has to look up and see the gently sloping hills of Surrey beyond the window. This house in England was the first piece of his world Killian had showed her, but it wasn't the last; they spent their honeymoon in Paris where they took the elevator to the top of Eiffel Tower and watched the sun falling below the horizon and then hopped on a train to Prague and watched Henry pose for a portrait on the Charles Bridge before going back to Hawaii where Rose Emily Jones was born on the first day of March. She had blonde hair like her mother and the eyes like her father, and both Emma and Killian cried when he first held her in his arms.
After filling the dishwasher and starting the program, Emma walks down the hallway, following the sound of music coming from Rose's room, smiling to herself because she knows what she's going to find.
Rose is lying in her cot, fighting sleep because she's as fond of her father's singing voice as Emma is, and Henry is sitting in Killian's lap, pressing the strings on the neck of the guitar Killian is picking, their son's forehead adorably scrunched in deep concentration.
Emma waits before the song ends before walking into the room, shaking her head at Killian.
"You were supposed to put her to sleep", she says and he shrugs.
"It's not my fault that she finds this obligatory afternoon nap to be a complete load of rubbish", he says and Henry giggles, taking the guitar and running out of the room so he can experiment by himself. "Oi, careful with it!"
"I'm careful", Henry calls over his shoulder and disappears down the hallway.
"Let's try with a story, huh?" Emma says and he presses a kiss against her hip before settling her in his lap.
"What do you say, Rosie, do you want to hear a story?" Killian asks his daughter and she nods enthusiastically, completely awake again.
"Peter and Neverland", she demands, and as Emma listens to him talk their baby to sleep, she thinks about the day she brought Henry to work with her and how Killian read him this same story, their bond only growing stronger with time.
She's always going to be grateful to Mr. Barrie for writing the most important book in the world.
Emma lays on a blanket with her head on Killian's thigh, looking at Rose wobbling around the clearing as she chases Henry. Killian is leaning against the tree that stretches its branches over them and provides shade from the warm August sun, sifting his fingers through her hair absentmindedly because his whole attention is on Rose.
The first few months of their daughter's life, Emma would often find the bed empty, Killian sitting next to Rose at odd hours of the night, her tiny hand wrapped around his index finger, his chin resting on the rail of her cot as he watched her sleep.
"Come back to bed", Emma would say, massaging the tight muscles in his shoulders to help them relax after an entire day of propelling his chair forward.
"Just a little bit longer", he'd answer, completely spellbound with the rising and falling of Rose's chest.
Henry lets Rose catch him and she runs away from him shrieking, launching herself at Killian and yelling "safe" at the top of her lungs.
"Sorry mate, can't touch little swan here", Killian says and settles Rose in his lap, careful to keep her kicking feet away from Emma's face.
"I'm hungry", Henry announces and Emma sits up, opening the picnic basket and handing him a sandwich. She gives Killian the bottle with iced tea for Rose and their fingers brush together, electricity jumping between them, his smile making her want to stay in this moment forever even though she knows she had thought the same before and she's going to think it again. Their life has been like a fairytale since she found him, and this is their happily ever after; two beautiful children and more love than anybody could ask for.
Sometimes she wakes up in the middle of the night and finds Killian watching her intently, his eyes so blue even in the semi-darkness of their room.
"Is everything okay?" Emma asks him, caressing his face and trying to read his expression with her fingertips.
"Everything is perfect, love", he says, turning his head so he can kiss her palm.
They both go back to sleep but it keeps happening until the night he tells her that he's glad for the accident if it was the only way for her to walk into his life and turn everything right, and Emma smiles, wrapping herself around him and telling him that she feels the same about Neal.
"I love you, Swan", he whispers against her ear and Emma kisses him, feeling his strong arms pull her closer until she doesn't know where he starts and she begins.
"And I love you."
Every September, when the English weather becomes gloomy and rainy, Emma packs their suitcases and they fly back to O'ahu, where they settle until the next summer.
Their house is in the same neighborhood of Honolulu as her parents', spacious and bright with a big garden that opens up to a private beach.
On their second anniversary they take Killian's boat, which Henry insisted they name Jolly Roger, Killian guiding it out of the harbor as Henry bounces up and down beside him.
"Dad, let me let me let me", he repeats until Killian lets him take the wheel, staying behind him and keeping an eye on what he's doing.
"I'm pretty sure there's a law against letting children drive boats", Emma says, trying to prevent Rose from going to Killian until she puts enough sunscreen on her face and arms.
"Oh come on, Swan, you know Henry's good at this", Killian says, laying his hand on her bare knee, his attention still on Henry.
"Yeah mom, don't worry", Henry says and Emma gives up, watching Rose walk over the gently rocking deck fearlessly because she knows that her father's hand is always there to catch her and because she's got sea in her veins just like Killian.
"Come 'ere, my little pirate princess", Killian says and scoops Rose into his lap and tickles her mercilessly until she starts giggling.
Emma leans down and wraps he arms around him from behind, resting her chin against his shoulder and remembering the first time he took them sailing; his eyes were dancing with joy because he could finally share his love for the sea with the people who mean the most to him. This boat had seen a lot of first times, but her favorite would always be hearing Rose say her first word; Emma handed her to Killian and Rose said "daddy", clear as a bell, making them both a bit weepy.
"Happy anniversary, lass", Killian says, leaning his head against hers, keeping an arm around Rose and a hand on Henry's shoulder so he knows that he's got him.
"Happy anniversary", Emma says, pressing her lips against his stubbled cheek, feeling like she's flying because she's got everything she ever wanted; her parents, two babies and a husband who loves her more than anything else in the world.
A girl who grew up all alone is never going to be alone again.