Snow clutched her belly, doubling over as another contraction hit. Her breathing was deep and panicked. She couldn't stop, not now. She had to make it to the wardrobe. Snow shuffled awkwardly done the corridor to Emma's nursery, one hand on her enormous belly and the other holding up the many layers of her full skirts. Battle sounds rang all around the palace. She was running out of time.
The Evil Queen and the curse were inside and making their way to her. Snow could see the dark purple clouds swarming the lower levels out of the windows lining the hall. The entire forest was covered, she couldn't see a single tree top. A mass of purple spread the length of the horizon, drowning the blue sky and gliding over the grey water.
"Snow, hurry!" Charming's desperate voice sounded somewhere behind her. She turned briefly to see where her husband was. Charming came into the corridor behind her, sword and shield at the ready. He ran to her side putting an arm around her waist and taking her hand in his, ushered her to the nursery.
A crash sounded as four completely black-armored soldiers burst through the doors at the far end of the corridor. Charming squeezed Snows hand once before letting go and rushing at the Queen's men, holding them off. Snow fought the urge to turn back to Charming and threw the door to the nursery open.
Emma's nursery was in a tower that overlooked the ocean. It had red silk drapes that cascaded to the floor around the windows. Several book shelves lined the walls, stacked with pretty dolls and trinkets. A rocking chair sat in a corner near the balcony. Snow had dreamed many times of sitting there, holding Emma close, reading her stories, singing her to sleep, and watching the sun rise and set over the water.
Rumplestiltskin had been clear, though. It would take 28 years before the curse would be broken. She would never sit in that chair with her daughter.
There were toys that would now never be played with. A crib that would never be slept in. A wardrobe that would never be used to hold clothes. By the time they returned, Emma would be an adult.
Snow headed towards the wardrobe Geppetto had carved out of an enchanted tree. Another agonising slice ripped through Snow's mid-section and she let out a scream, gripping onto the side of the crib to stop herself from dropping to the ground.
"Snow!" Charming cried from the hall. He burst into the nursery and wrapped an arm around his wife, half-carrying her to the wardrobe.
Charming opened the intricately carved doors, ushering Snow inside. She had to sit, cramped in the wardrobe, it wasn't tall enough to stand upright in.
Snow took her husbands face in her hands "we will be back for you," she promised, pressing her lips to his. Hard, desperate. Snow's throat constricted, her stomach dropped and she felt the sticky tears well up in her eyes.
"I know you will. I love you," Charming stroked Snow's tear-stained cheeks one last time before stepping back to close the wardrobe doors.
Snow saw four black soldiers enter the nursery before she was shrouded in darkness and heard a small click of the lock. She yelled out once before the darkness swallowed her consciousness.