Here a little one shot about Hooks past, inspired by a post from the tumbr user theherohook ( post/53960854364/drops-killians-ring-in-and-runs), thanks for that observation.
Hope you enjoy ;)
The waves splashed gently against the side of the Jolly Roger, creating an almost soothing, steady sound, as they waited for someone to help them aboard the ship.
They all had decided they would have the best chances of finding Henry, if they searched through Neverland's jungle in pairs of two, Emma somehow ended up with Hook, and now they were sitting on their little rowboat (Hook said, dropping anchor directly at the shoreline would be too dangerous) , floating calmly beside his ship, after another long day with no sign of her son.
Emma was about to shout again for someone to help them up, but her father appeared at the railing "I'm already here. Come, Emma"
He reached his hand out for her to take and she did so without hesitation, the sooner she got out of the confined space of the rowboat, away from Hook, the better.
It was not like she didn't enjoy his company. If she was being honest, it was exactly the opposite.
She had spend in the last two weeks most of her day alone with him, searching for her son, and somewhere along their way through the deadly jungle, she came to realize she felt something for the cheeky pirate captain. Though she was not quiet sure what it was.
And she refused to analyze her feelings any further, trying to stuff them into a corner of her head, but it wasn't easy while she spent hours alone with him, so she looked forward to the moment when they would be finally around other people again.
David hauled her up aboard the ship and as soon as her foot were settled on it's wooden deck, she caught her mothers gaze, which wore a worried expression "I guess you two haven't had any luck either?"
Emma shook her head and let out a deep sigh "No, still, no sign of him."
Her mother gave her an encouraging look "We will find him."
"I hope so.", she replied quietly.
Before they were able to say anything else, Emma heard Hooks harsh voice behind her.
"You can now let go of me, mate."
She turned around to him and saw, that her father still had Hooks hand firmly in his grip, after he must have hauled him up, too, and his eyes were fixed onto it.
"Where did you get that?", David asked him in an equally harsh tone.
Hook grinned scoffingly at him "Well, prince, normally humans get two of them when they are born, sadly only this one remained me. Seems like royals don't take the education of their children as serious as they should."
David huffed at him "I don't mean your hand, pirate, I mean the ring." he pointed to the massive silver ring with the big black stone embedded in it's middle, that rested on one of Hooks fingers. "How did you managed to steal it?"
"I didn't stole it.", Hook hissed in response and yanked his hand forcefully out of the other mans grip.
"Of cause you did!", said David indignantly "How else could you have gotten your hands- hand on it?"
Emma didn't understand what was going on, but she decided quickly to step in, before they were completely at each others throat.
She gazed from Hook to her father "Okay, what is going on here?"
Hook let out a huff "Your father makes wrong assumptions, lass."
"I don't, you thief.", murmured her father venomously.
Emma sighed deeply "Okay, time out, both of you.", her voice was stern, leaving them no room to argue any further "What is this about?"
"The ring.", David answered her simply, pointing towards Hooks hand again.
"The ring? That's what you two are fighting about? ", Emma asked incredulously and rubbed her fingers over her temple, their immature behavior gave her a headache "Let it go, Dad. It's just a ring."
He shook his head firmly "It is not just some ring, Emma. Look at it, that ring has the emblem of our kingdom on it. That ring is part of our crown jewels, I would recognize it anywhere. And I would like to know how he got his dirty hand on it."
The thought that she had a kingdom, was still new to Emma and she didn't even knew what that emblem looked like.
With confusion and curiosity, she let her gaze fall back to Hook, who stood there quietly and motionless while her father had spoken, playing with said ring as if he was deep in thoughts.
He flinched at the sound of his name, as if he had forgotten that someone else was present. As he looked up to meet her gaze, she was surprised to find a vulnerability in his ocean blue eyes, she had never seen before.
"Can I see the ring for a second?", Emma asked gently, a little unsure how to act towards him now.
Hook cleared his throat "Sure, love."
He hold his hand out for her and she took a few steps towards him, taking it in her own and bringing it closer to her eyes to examine the ring, trying to ignore the light electric pulse she felt as their hands touched.
The ring was oval shaped, out of massive silver and around the big dark stone in the middle, there where little five-petaled flowers engraved into the silver.
Still holding on to Hooks hand, she turned a little into her fathers direction "What? There are just some flowers. That's the emblem of you- our kingdom?"
She saw David nodding "Yes, the five-petaled flowers. They stand for completion and strength."
Emmas gaze suddenly fall onto her wrist of the hand which was intertwined with Hooks, onto the small tattoo she got there at the age of sixteen. The five-petaled flower.
Was it just a strange coincidence? No, she remembered how drawn she had been to that particular pattern, somehow she must have subconsciously recognized it as something familiar. Something important. And in the last few months she learned coincidences rarely existed.
But why would Hook have a ring with the symbol of her family, if he hadn't stolen it? It made no sense.
She turned her head back to him and locked her eyes with his again, in which still glimmered vulnerability "Who gave it to you?" her quiet voice was soft, for some reason not daring to speak to him in any other way, while he wore this foreign expression in his eyes.
Hooks gaze fell down upon their still intertwined hands and he paused a moment, before he spoke "It belonged to my mother.", his tone matched the expression of his blue eyes and he gently removed his hand out of hers "The only thing I have from her."
Emma immediately saw through him. He was an orphan, too.
And she understood too good what it felt like to look at the only thing that you have left from your parents. She had this feeling many times over the years, when she looked at her baby blanket.
Davids broke her out of her thoughts.
"What was her name?", he asked Hook, his tone a lot softer then it was previously when directed at him, but there was also something else in his voice, like he thought he was about to discover something.
Hook glanced briefly at him, then settled his gaze back to his ring "Ariel."
Silence fell between them.
Emma needed a moment to grasp what he just said, then she broke the silence "Ariel? Like in the little mermaid?"
She didn't even know why she was so surprised by his revelation, after all Snow White and Prince Charming were her parents and Rumpelstiltskin was the grandfather of her son, but somehow she had a hard time picturing Ariel the little mermaid as Captain Hooks mother. But then again, Red Riding Hood was also the wolf, so it seemed like everything was possible.
"The little mermaid", Hook sneered "Your world seems to have the bad habit of trivializing our storys in their tails. Hers for example is not as cute as you may think."
Emma blinked a few times, her mind still processing everything "What... What happened to her?"
"She paid the price of magic" he replied and she heard how he tried hard to cover the emotions which threatened to be revealed trough his voice.
She didn't really know what that meant, but apparently her worlds storys got it all wrong again and Ariel never found her happy ending.
Emma wanted to ask him more about her, but before she could say anything more, David, who had until now silently watched, raised his voice with a tensed tone in it "Was your fathers name Eric?"
She wondered why he was so anxious about his question, but Emma was curious about it's answer. If Ariel never got her happy ending, there was also a possibility that she hadn't been at all with her Prince Eric. At this thought, she realized something else.
If he was his father, then Hook would be also a prince.
She saw Hook suddenly stiffened at her fathers question, his jaw clenching visibly "Yes", he answered through his teeth and added in a murmur "But he is a topic I would rather not discuss now, your majesty."
Captain Hook is a prince, was the only thing that Emma was able to think of in that moment.
Davids was even more startled than she was. He was flabbergasted and stared at Hook with wide eyes "Please tell me this is a joke."
Hook laughed harshly "Believe me, I wish it was, but sadly it is not."
"Oh god, no.", groaned the other man in frustration "This can't be happening."
Emma was irritated by her fathers extreme reaction "I know, Captain Hook being some prince is more than strange, but don't you think your exaggerating a little, Dad? I mean it doesn't concern you."
David let out a tensed laugh at her words "Doesn't concern me? Well, it will not only concern me, but also you, all of us, if we manage to return to the Enchanted Forest and he claims the kingdom back."
"What?", Emma and Hook asked simultaneously.
Hook looked more than baffled, his gaze going back and forth between Emma and her father "What are you bloody talking about? Prince?"
David watched him in confusion "You don't know?"
"What do I not know?!", Hook almost shouted, anger and frustration mixing under his irritation "I'm not some bloody prince, if that's what you mean. My father was a worthless fugitive!"
The headache Emma had grew immensely as she tried to understand what was going on. What did her father mean with claiming the kingdom back?
"Well, you said your mothers name is Ariel and your fathers Eric. As in Prince Eric from the castle above the sea.", David explained calmly.
Hook chuckled darkly "He was no royalty."
Emmas father sighed in annoyance "Then tell me how else your mother should have gotten that ring?"
"How would I know? I never got the chance to ask her.", he replied quietly.
Emma looked at her father enquiringly "Wait... you said that ring was part of our family's crown jewels, how does that fit together?"
David groaned in responds, as if he didn't like the direction in which her question went but he began to explain "Well, there was a time where the kingdom wasn't ours. You know, that I was adopted by King George. King Georges great-grandfather got the kingdom almost 300 years ago from it's original ruler, because he had no heir. The only son he had run away, as he didn't approve of the girl he wanted to marry. A girl named Ariel", he let out a deep sigh "So Hooks parents Ariel and Prince Eric were the rightful heirs of our kingdom and the castle above the sea, our home. And that would make Hook now the rightful heir."
Silents fell between them again, as David was finished.
Captain Hook was a prince. Not just some prince, the rightful prince of the Charming's kingdom.
Emmas head felt like it would fall apart, as she broke the silence after what felt like an eternity "This gives me a headache, it's far too complicated."
Her gaze fell onto Hook, who stared at his mothers ring. He looked conflicted, so many different emotions crossing his features, that she wasn't even able to define one of them.
"Killian?...", she gently addressed him.
He caught her gaze, visibly surprised that she used his given name.
A small smile appeared on his face at her question "Well, lass, I'm still a little shocked, you don't find out everyday that you are royalty."
Emma let out a little chuckle "Tell me about it.", then she frowned suddenly "No, wait... seems like I'm not really a princess, when you are the rightful heir. This is so weird."
David cleared his voice "No, Emma. You're still a princess, remember that your mother was one, too. A real one."
"Damn", she cursed, shook her head and grinned teasingly "But still, Prince Killian. You probably would like us all to kneel in front of you now."
Killian groaned "Don't you dare to start that, love."
Then he took a step towards her, grinning cheekily and leaning in, to whisper something huskily in her ear, that her father wasn't supposed to hear "But you can kneel in front of me all you want, when we're alone, love."
Emma put her hands on his chest and shoved him a little away from her, but couldn't suppress the laugh, that escaped her at his innuendo "You really need to file on your manners, that's not the behavior of a prince."
He chuckled and pointed to her hands, which still rested against his chest "I think you have a lot of filing to do, too, princess."
Emma grinned mischievously at him "Then we can do the filing together."
Behind them, she could hear her father groaning heavily "Oh god, please give me strength to endure this", which brought him just a laugh from the peculiar pair.
The savior princess and the new found pirate prince.