AN: Sorry this took so long.
"Cora," asked Hook as the two trudged through the forest, "where are we going?"
Cora laughed. "Oh Hook, it's very simple. If we're to know where those imbeciles are heading, we need a spy. Someone who they can trust."
"So what," said Hook, "you're going to take someone's heart and put them up to it?"
"I was planning on taking that Aurora girl's," responded Cora, "but it appears that we need an old friend to do our dirty work for us."
Eventually, Cora and Killian came to a small hut in the middle of the forest. The place was falling apart and covered in moss, after twenty eight years of being deserted. But the place was the inhabitants for someone new as of recently. Cora didn't bother to knock, merely thrusting her hand out in front of her, causing the door slamming itself open.
Inside, Killian saw who they were after. "What, him?"
The boy was young, with pale skin and yellow hair in a mess. Cora nodded. "Who wouldn't trust a helpless child?"
The boy quickly drew a dagger, pointing it at Cora and Hook. "What do you two want?"
"Oh, come now Shasta," said Cora. "We have business to attend to."
Shasta emerged from his hut and ran to the lake that his house stood next to. He would've cried, but he was used to his beatings from his father by now. He was washing out the small cut on his cheek, when he heard trotting in the distance.
He looked up, only to see none other than Queen Regina marching down the road with her royal guard.
Shasta's father quickly emerged from their hut, and when he saw the Queen, he took a bow.
There were only two guards alongside the Queen, and the three rode horseback. Regina got off of her horse and greeted the old man who Shasta had lived with all his life.
"I suppose this place will do," she said to herself. "You there, it is late, and my men and I require a place to stay for the night."
"We would be most honored, your majesty," said Shasta's father.
Shasta was forced to sleep outside that night, as his father was sleeping in his room, and Regina and her men had taken his.
Shasta had to eat his dinner outside as well, but put his ear up to the door to listen in on whatever was going on inside.
"So that boy," he heard the Queen say, "he looks nothing like you. Is he adopted?"
"Of course," said Shasta's father, "but please do not tell him that. He doesn't even know."
Shasta didn't bother listening to the rest of the conversation. He merely sat down and reevaluated everything he had ever known.
In one sense, he was saddened that his life was a lie, but in another sense, he was happy. That man wasn't his father.
Although he had always planned to run away, this was the motivation he needed to finally do so. He got up and was about to head off, when he heard someone behind him.
"Where do you think you're going?"
Shasta turned around, very afraid, but he saw no one was there but the horses.
"I thought I heard someone," said Shasta to himself.
"You did," said the Queen's horse.
Shasta gasped, before slowly approaching it. "Horses don't talk," he said firmly.
"Where I come from, all horses talk."
The horse had explained that he ventured to this land long ago, but was captured by awful people, and was now a horse pretending to be a non-talking one, else he be castrated as a freak and put in a circus.
Shasta instantly had an idea. "We can run away together," he said, with the horse looking at Shasta happily. "I was waiting for you to suggest that."
Emma and the others had set up camp for the night, with Emma and Mary Margaret watching the silent stars go by. If Mary Margaret was correct, the lake a few miles away would restore their bean and send them home.
It was just then that they heard a rustling in the forest. Mary Margaret drew her bow, Emma her gun, and Mulan her sword, as she was on guard at the time. When Aurora herself awoke, she drew her blade, until the four saw that it was merely a child.
He came out of a bush, panting. He quickly ran to them, screaming for help.
"What's wrong?" asked Mary Margaret.
"A chimera!" he panted. "It was chasing me!"
The four looked to the woods, where there was nothing.
"Well," began Emma, "chimera or not, it seems to be gone now. What's your name kid?"
"Shasta," he said with a pretend panting. "I'm Shasta."
It was the dead of night, and the two trotted through the countryside. The horse was named Breehy-hinny-brinny-hoohy-hah, but Shasta merely called him Bree.
When they set up camp, they slept, but when the sun began to rise, they heard something. Shasta checked what it was, and it appeared to be the Queen and one of her guards, with the Queen on one of their horses rather than the second guard.
"She's found us!" whispered Shasta to Bree. The two were sure to meet their end, when they suddenly found themselves enveloped in a large purple fog.
When it cleared away, the next thing they knew, they were inside of a majestic castle.
Shasta looked around, when Bree heard a voice.
"Who goes there!" demanded Bree in human tongue.
"That's rude," said a giggly and high pitched voice, "especially to someone who just saved you two."
The two looked to the source of the voice, and found it was a man with grey skin and a wicked smile on his face.
"Hello. Rumplestiltskin, at your service."
"Why have you brought us here?" asked Bree.
"Because I thought I heard none other than a talking horse," he answered. "And there's only one place that I know of that involves talking horses. And trust me, I don't like anything from there meddling in our world. So I've decided to send you two in the right direction."
"You're going to send me home?"
Rumplestiltskin nodded. "And tell that beast who all you talking animals adore in your world, that if anything from that land ever comes here again, I will personally kill it."
As the four slept, Cora and Hook stood diligently close by. Shasta approached carefully as to not wake the others.
"So," said Cora, "where are they going?"
"It's a lake," answered Shasta. "A lake that will restore the magic bean they have to life."
Cora smirked. "Then we have a way to Storybrooke. You've done well child. Keep following them."
"Earlier," started Shasta, "When I agreed to do this, you promised me something. What is it?"
"Why, that beloved horse of yours."
Shasta and successfully made it off of the island of Wild Things, with a bean in hand.
He laughed laughed upon making it to the shore, greeting Bree, who was awaiting him.
"Very good child!" said Bree ecstatically. "Now we have a means of going home!"
"How does it work?" asked Shasta.
"It's very simple," responded the horse. "Just throw it on the ground, and think of where you wish to go. And then-"
"And then you'll have escaped," said a female voice. They turned, only to see standing there was Queen Regina. "Now," she continued, "I'll have my horse back."
"NO!" protested Bree. "I am a free horse. Your people enslaved me when I first came to this world."
"Well then it's unfortunate that you're MY slave," she said, conjuring a fireball in her palm.
"Um, Regina," said another voice from behind. She turned, only to see Rumplestiltskin there.
"What are you doing here?" she demanded.
"Ensuring a stupid kitty gets a message," he said. "Right, you probably don't get that." He snapped his fingers, and once again, Shasta and Bree found themselves safely away from the Queen.
"WHY ARE YOU SAVING US SO MUCH?" asked Shasta as they all stood in the middle of the woods.
"As I said!" said the Dark One sharply. "To ensure that stupid cat gets the message. Never let anything from there come to here again!"
With that, he vanished, but Shasta and Bree merely stood there, relieved.
Shasta put it in Bree's mouth so the horse could think of the location he wished to go to, then dropped it from in between his teeth. Below them the bean began to shake and glow, and the two stood back as a portal began to open.
Shasta got on Bree's back as the two prepared to jump in.
"You never said," yelled Shasta over the noise that the portal was making, "what's this land that we're going to called?"
"A place where all animals can talk, and the greatest wonders of all may be seen."
"But what's it called?!"
And Bree jumped into the portal, with Shasta clinging tightly as the two were thrown between worlds.
Shasta continued to journey with the unsuspecting protagonists, with Bree in mind.
"Don't worry," Shasta thought to himself. "I'm coming to save you Bree. I swear I'll save you."