Ahoy shipmates,

How spoilt have we been with season 3? Loving it! This is just a sort of accompaniment to 3x02 with a little shot to the future and the past.

As always, come play on tumblr with me (wonder24) and please leave feedback if you liked this (or if you didn't) so I know where to take these stories!

Disclaimer: I don't own them at all. But I would gladly take them in if they needed me.

..:::..

Honesty is such a Lonely Word

..:::..

It hurts her in a way she can't explain, a way that is more pleasure than pain. It winds her and blinds her and at the very same time, makes her toes tingle with the anticipation of just stepping closer…

..:::..

The click, click, click of heels on tiles is what she remembers most. She had looked over her shoulder to see her parents disappearing in the distance, her mother crying into her father's shoulder as he rested a hand on her pregnant belly.

"Will I still get to see my new brother or sister?" she had asked quietly, her voice almost masked by the sound of the woman's footsteps.

She had turned around, the click, click, click giving way to a slide as she bent down before the three year old Emma Swan. In her mind's eye she remembers the strong smell of tobacco, painted red lips and cold grey eyes, "Of course, sweetheart. But first we need to introduce you to some other boys and girls."

It was a simple enough statement designed to give her what she wanted and then distract and entice her with the promise of friends, but Emma already knew, she could see it from the moment her mother had packed up her things in a small brown suitcase and carried her to the car. She could see it in her father's slouched shoulders and shaking hands. She just knew.

"Okay," she agreed, swallowing against a lump in her throat. She didn't want to cry in front of the other kids.

She knew she'd be spending a lot of time with them.

..:::..

Her breathing quickens, her heart rate peaks. She can smell the leather and spice of him and it makes her mouth water…

..:::..

She'd always gotten on just fine on her own, but she had to admit that having someone else just like her was a nice change to her usually lonesome existence.

He was cute and a little bit charming and he made her feel alive and wanted.

It wasn't the perfect lifestyle and she knew it wasn't something they could hide behind forever, but she was young and impulsive and she wanted it. She wanted him.

They were indulging themselves with champagne and chocolate dipped strawberries courtesy of the absent couple in room 518 of the Hilton Hotel when a knock at the door pulled them from their blissful ignorance of the outside world. Emma quickly jumped over the bed, grabbing her backpack and headed for the window, but Neal hushed her, "They wouldn't knock if they had a key."

She nodded, agreeing with his logic and watched as he slowly opened the door. She could hear fragments of the conversation, threats for not paying up on loans and promises that they would continue to follow the pair.

As Neal closed the door, she moved towards him, "What was that about?"

"A job they want us to do."

She took another step, their gourmet meal forgotten by the bed, "What kind of job?"

He ran a hand through his hair, trying not to make eye contact, "A few small things, just to pay them back for robbing that property they owned."

"Neal, we've gotta move on. They're never going to let go of that debt."

He stepped towards her, hands reaching out to rest on her shoulders, "Babe, it'll be fine. It's just one last job for them."

Her forehead came to rest against his as she shook her head, "It feels wrong. Doesn't it feel wrong to you?"

She could almost feel the roll of his eyes, but tried to ignore it. She knew he didn't believe in her ability to tell a lie from the truth. "It's going to be okay," he reassured.

But when they were interrupted again less than a week later, he was the one to suggest that now maybe they should move on.

..:::..

There's something shining in his eyes that she's been so unfamiliar with her whole life. How can it be that the pirate is the one making her believe in trust once more?

..:::..

It was a gift really, something that she couldn't explain, but something that had never failed her. It kept her hardened and strong and she knew who she could trust and who she couldn't.

And she wasn't surprised to learn that there were more people in this world that she couldn't trust. So she went it alone, bought an apartment, became a bail bonds person and celebrated her 28th birthday with a singular cupcake.

But when a little boy showed up on her doorstep and told her he was her son, she knew right away that he was being honest and as she took a lasting look at her apartment, the solitary cupcake on her kitchen bench, she knew her life was about to change.

..:::..

But now. Now is the time for her to start believing, in this place, this safe place between him and the ocean, it's time for her to have a little faith…

..:::..

She takes a step back from him, his eyes following her and looking right into her. It's too much. He knows too much of her.

"Perhaps I would."

It scares her and thrills her all at once, her fingers just brushing against his as she passes his flask back to him. The electricity running through them is almost tangible and she can taste the anticipation on her lips mixed with sweet rum and that whisper of him.

There's nothing she wants more than to reach forward and pull him to her, but she can't just yet. There are bigger things at play in this place, nastier things than she could ever imagine, the reality of the situation hitting her squarely in the chest whenever she thinks about her son out there, lost and feeling so, so alone.

But she can see it there, see it in his eyes. The honesty, the blatant need for her to believe him. And she is starting to.

Somewhere in her tangled up thoughts she gets lost and feels herself drifting towards him a little, but she catches herself, blinking and ducking her head as she steps around him.

She can feel his piercing gaze on the back of her but has to resist turning around. Because she knows what she would see. She'd see an open book, ready for her to read, just as he had done her. She would see something scary and unknown shining above all other qualities he may possess.

She would see the truth of him. And maybe on a day not so far in the future she wouldn't be afraid of that.

..:::..

The flow of the ocean pushes them together as his ship rocks on the waves, taking them back home.

His hand curls behind her neck, pulling her in and with Henry tucked safely in bed she finally allows her soul to see his as they meet again and again, their actions speaking for them as their soft moans fill the air.