A/N: FOLLOWING PARAGRAPH HAS SPOILERS AVERT EYES IF YOU DON'T WANT TO KNOW! So we got the pic and the entire tag/ship EXPLODED last night and in the midst of all of it, a few of us had a similar idea- what if after the kiss, Killian said good form? And then meg (keepcalmwearetimeless on tumblr) made this great post spiraling off that idea that ended up inspiring this fic... PLEASE leave a comment it would mean the world to me! :)
Emma was growing restless in the efforts to find her son. It seemed like an eternity since she lost Henry, and every day felt as if it was a failure. She tried to focus on the progress they'd made, but it was just so hard sometimes to let go of the anger she held onto when it came to Pan.
It had been a few hours since they'd split up, Hook sending each duo in the direction of a camp he knew the lost boys used occasionally, since the map wasn't doing them much good when Pan constantly kept his boys on the move. David and Mary Margret headed due north; Regina and Tink stayed inland mostly, traveling along a path leading to some waterfalls a little south of them; Emma and Killian took the more difficult trail that followed an estimated location of where Pan would end up based on the directions of his previous camps. It was the most likely to deliver results, so naturally Emma had insisted she go along with Hook who could most easily keep them on course.
Things had been…different with Hook since arriving in Neverland. Every day was something new, something surprising when it came to their relationship. Emma found herself slipping into a comfortable routine with him; hanging back to get his opinions on their plans, falling into line beside him if at all possible when a threat was evident, sitting next to each other around the fire…She was starting to trust him more than she ever intended to, and perhaps the scariest part was that she didn't even mind. To be honest, she enjoyed knowing someone had her back.
And she was starting to enjoy the fact that that person happened to be Hook.
"How much farther would you care to go before heading back?" Killian asked as he held back a branch for her to walk under. Emma passed him and paused, turning to look at him over her shoulder.
"Look, this is the best chance at getting Henry back right now, and I'm in no hurry to stop. We aren't supposed to meet the others until tomorrow morning anyway; let's keep going," she answered before continuing their trek.
He grabbed her arm gently, causing her to stop walking. "Emma, you haven't been sleeping. I know you want to find him but you need to take a break every now and-"
"I'm fine," she said. Killian nodded and looked away, reluctantly releasing her arm as he took the lead.
"I know you put that brave face on for the sake of your parents, love, but it's alright if you're afraid. I wouldn't blame you if you were." Emma never replied, and Killian didn't push her to. It had become customary for him to say something that unnerved her in unexpected ways; sometimes she'd answer, sometimes she didn't. It was hit- and- miss with her it seemed.
It was nearly dusk when they found it. Killian stepped through the brush first, backing up quickly and holding Emma back when he saw the camp. He signaled her to be quiet, and despite Emma's initial desire to scream Henry's name, she trusted Killian's instincts. He slowly crept out, examining the campfire and tents set up. The place was empty, the coals in the fire cool to the touch. It had been hours since they'd last been here, but they were obviously coming back if they left their belongings strewn out like this.
"Where are they? Where's Henry?" Emma asked frantically, her gaze darting between trees anticipating Peter to come out of nowhere like he so enjoyed doing.
"I don't know, love. Emma, look at me," he said. She did, and instantly realized what all this meant. Killian stole her thoughts and threw them back at her. "He's close, love. You're son- he's close."
Emma let out a breath in a heavy sigh and nearly cried in relief. He was right- her son was close, close enough that she'd see him if they waited long enough.
And it was because of him. They never would have found the camp, if it wasn't for him. Emma's lips twitched upwards ever so slightly as she took a tentative step towards Killian, then another. He swallowed and his eyes widened as they followed her movements. As if she was gravity pulling him in, he leaned forward, afraid if he took a step closer to her it would break the spell.
Emma was only a foot away when he finally met her eyes with his own. His breath caught in his throat at the look of awe in her eyes, a look he somehow was worthy of. Desperately, he kept his eyes on hers as long as he could before they slipped down to her lips and back up, noting the way she too had glanced down slightly.
"Thank you," she whispered.
"Love-" He was cut off by her sudden movement, their bodies gently pressed together as her hands came up to grip the lapels of his coat.
In an instant Emma decided she wanted this, wanted him, and leaned forward to press her lips against his. It took no longer than a second for Killian's good hand to reach for her cheek, and then she was gone, their foreheads pressed together but their lips no longer touching. Killian was frozen, he couldn't think about anything except her; her soft hair against his fingers, her body pressed against his, her lips…
Emma was in much the same state, her grip tightening on his coat to prevent her hands from shaking, while her mind was reeling. God, when was the last time she felt that from such a short innocent kiss? Had she ever? They'd barely even kissed and she was breathless, already drowning in him.
But somehow, that was okay.
Killian finally found his voice, which was significantly lower than it normally was, sending shivers down Emma's spine. "Good form," Emma fought the urge to laugh, but an airy chuckle escaped. Killian smiled faintly and brushed his nose against hers.
"But not good enough," he added. Emma opened her eyes for an instant to look at him but they slipped shut soon after, because his lips were back on hers and her head was spinning.
Where the first felt as the perfect ending to what had panned out to be an incredible day, this was the beginning of something far greater than she'd ever imagined. The first was a sunset, and this was the sunrise.
His hand which had carefully lain on the side of her face was now entangled in her hair, his other arm pulling her in at the small of her back. Emma gasped in surprise, Killian taking the opportunity to deepen the kiss. He felt as if he'd waited centuries to kiss this woman, and in a way he had. She wasn't the first he'd kissed since Milah, but she was the first he'd kissed like this.
Emma's hands left his coat in favor of his hair, his face, his neck- anywhere. Her hand tugged at his hair when he nipped her bottom lip, before her fingertips traced a line along his scruff. He kissed her with an urgency he couldn't quite place, drinking her in in case he never got the chance to kiss her again.
A sigh left his lips with her feather light touch, and just like that their kiss changed again. It was softer now, slower, as if they were memorizing each other. Their lips moved together in sync, Killian's hand fisting in her shirt at the same time Emma slipped her hands to his chest. The world around them fell away in an second, the only thing on either's mind was each other. It was crazy, having his sort of connection with someone you barely know, as if you'd known them your entire life, as if you'd already memorized the curve of their lips, the feel of their skin under yours. Emma's hands moved to frame his face as he wrapped his arms around her waist, pulling her closer, and despite the unexpected intimacy of the kiss, Emma had never felt more comfortable with Killian Jones.