A/n: This series started as a prompt that was written for someone before the finale aired. Set three years post curse in an AU world where Killian was left with them after the curse hit, all of their memories intact, but with no way to get back to the Enchanted Forest, so instead, they built a life together until tragedy struck them. It started as an angsty drabble, but I do expand on the backstory in future parts. I have 4 parts written already and I'm not sure when I'll end it, but it was requested that I post this on here, so here you are!
"She stood by as it fell apart, separate rooms and broken hearts, but I won't be the one to let you go."
~ Kiss Me Slowly - Parachute
"We just… we jumped into things too quickly, we let our emotions get ahead of us and maybe if we had-" Emma stilled from her frantic pacing, arm freezing midair where it had been going to rub at her throbbing temple. "Are you even listening to me?"
Killian sat at the edge of the bed, elbows digging into his knees, back rigid, but his neck hanging startlingly limply, betraying the stiffness of his posture. His eyes stared lifelessly into the threading of the carpet, blankly as if he weren't looking at anything at all and his silence was the straw that broke the camel's (or in this case, the savior's) back, telltale tears that she blinked back madly burning the back of her eyes.
"What? Is the damned carpet more important than talking to me now?" she sputtered, face growing red with emotion, as the tears threatening to spill over hit her again with a vengeance. "You're not even going to-to talk to me about this?"
He lifted his head slowly, darkened blue eyes peering into her green with nothing but utter defeat behind them. "What is there left to talk about?"
"You've long made up your mind, you've told me as much over the past three weeks, so what is it that you want me to say?" His voice was thick and rough with emotion, low, like a cornered animal as he sat hunched on the bed, refusing to leave, wishing to be left in peace. "Congratulations, love, you've broken me. I've fought for you for the past year and I've got little fight left, so tell me, Emma, what is there left to talk about?"
Emma drew in a breath sharply, a pang of guilt striking hard and fast. No. She couldn't let him break her too. They'd spent the last damn year breaking each other. It'd been three years since everyone cursed had been taken away, since she'd been left alone all over again, separated from her family without hope to ever see them again - but she still had him, she still had Henry. They had had Henry. It'd been just over a year since a fucking car with a reckless driver not watching where they were going did what Neverland and Peter Pan couldn't. The irony of the god damned century.
Now, for all she cared, she had no one. She'd always lived her life that way. It was safer, safer for her heart (she wasn't even sure if it could break into smaller pieces).
"You won't even fight, you won't even bloody fight for us! You get scared, you run, you leave our bed and sleep on the bloody sofa because of your past, because you're in pain, and when you're in pain you won't let anyone help you, but it's not me you're running from, Emma! I've never hurt you, I'm…" he stopped abruptly when his voice broke, and she watched his Adam's apple bob up and down for a moment before he dropped his head again. "What we have is true, and you're just leaving it. After everything."
He'd said the words so quietly she almost couldn't make them out. Her mind filled in the blanks of the spots that she missed, the word "true" ringing out particularly painfully.
"There's no such thing as True Love, Killian. Not in my life. And if there was…" It would have been him.
The air hung heavy with unspoken words, unflung insults, unsung heartbreak, words kept to themselves for fear of hurting the other more than they had already hurt them, despite that being the very thing that just might save them.
"I lied," he breathed, shaking his head, having long gone back to staring at the ground. "I'll not stop fighting for you. I don't know how."
Emma lingered by the doorway, her heart thumping in her chest as ten seconds passed, then twenty. "I'll be by in the morning to sign the papers."
He didn't say a word as she left.
She hadn't expected him to.