"I would so love to be a fly on the wall for that conversation." Emma Swan leaned close to Regina Mills on the edge of the chaos that was Granny's Diner. They had come — ALL of them — to celebrate Henry's rescue and the return of everyone safely from Neverland.
Regina had closed her eyes to absorb the scent and sound of Emma leaning into her throat to speak. Opening her eyes when she felt Emma had moved away, she reached out to lift her coffee mug to her lips only to swipe through air.
She looked up, and up, and up still more. The top of the counter suddenly loomed over her the height of a Neverland cliff away.
"I'm right here, you don't hafta shout."
Emma's voice sounding right off her left shoulder made Regina jump in surprise. She turned reaching out; she would kill her. As she attempted to magically squeeze the life out of Emma, the blonde only looked at her in shock.
And she was not choking.
"Emma," Regina growled. "What is this?"
"I have no idea. One minute I'm whispering in your ear, and the next we're down here."
Regina looked around. The diner was still filled with the writhing mass that was Storybrooke's citizens at a party. She pulled Emma flush against the base of the counter as a pair of size 809 shoes stepped up to the bar.
Above them she could hear Whale ordering a drink from Ruby at the bar.
"This can't be happening," she muttered. She had a front foot seat to the worst pickup lines in four realms. Sigh.
"Any idea how to fix this?" Emma asked. Again, Regina jumped.
"Your magic did this, so you've got to undo it."
"My magic? I didn't do this. I couldn't do this." Regina waited. "I don't know how to do this."
"Correction. You don't know how you did this but, trust me, you did, indeed, do this." Regina swept her hands outward and down indicating both of their now pint-sized bodies.
"So tell me how we undo it."
Regina shook her head and waved her fingers. Nothing happened. She did it again just to be sure. Sigh. No doubt about it. At this size, she had no access to her own magic. She growled at Emma.
Emma backed up, holding up both hands, and stumbled against a leg of one of the counter stools. A handbag belonging to one of the guests overturned and an array of objects fell down upon them.
In reflex reaction, Regina pushed Emma out of the way of a falling compact mirror.
Emma stood up and brushed herself off, then stumbled on a mascara roller, falling onto her back across a pencil. Regina looked down at her with her hands fisted on her hips. "Hey, hey, I'm sorry. Okay? I didn't mean it. Help me up?"
Regina reached out a hand and helped Emma to her feet. "You shouldn't have done it."
"It was unintentional."
Regina rolled her eyes. "You cannot go through life unintentionally this inept, Miss Swan. Clowns work at their craft."
"All right. All right. You've made your point. The objective here should not be to berate me. It's to fix this. Let's focus on that."
"I can do both. Most people can chew gum and walk at the same time, Miss Swan."
"I don't know how many times I can say I'm sorry."
"How about until you stop being a pain in my ass? Which will be never."
"Oh, come on. Regina, I've been on your side through all this."
Regina sighed. "I suppose. All right. Let's start with the basic facts." She pointed above them. "You have made us tiny. Minute. Infinitesimal. Small as a mouse. In a room full of huge feet and even heavier baggage."
"Well then, maybe our first objective should be to get out of here." Emma grabbed Regina's hand and the two women worked their way over the mountain of spilled handbag contents, hugging the wall to avoid being trampled, and at last stood at the door to Granny's looking out through one of the panes of glass.
There was no way they were going to push the door open to get outside on their own. Regina's brow lowered and she turned, bringing her hand sharply against the back of Emma's head.
"No, no, wait. Let's get to this side." Emma looked up. "Here comes someone."
"I am not calling out for help. Many of these people would still sooner step on me than help me."
"No. I know. I'm just sayin—" Emma cut herself off, grabbed Regina's hand and dragged her through the opening in the door as the bell above them jingled. A lady's snowboot followed them out into the cold winter night.
Emma face-planted in a drift of snow melting against the side of the building. Regina couldn't help herself. She laughed. Then she shivered. "Damn."
"We left our coats inside."
"Our coats wouldn't fit."
"Then magic us up something warm to wear or so help me, if we get out of this, I will roast you like a Christmas turkey."
Emma closed her eyes. When she opened them, her eyes went wide.
"Um. Well, it's fur, and it's warm."
Regina did indeed feel warmer. But looking down at herself made her scream. "Miss Swan!"
Had anyone been looking outside from the party, they would have seen two small figures, one behind the other, running down the walk of Granny's toward Main Street in matching Santa suits. Sans the padding at least.
Emma called back over her shoulder. "I'm sorry. I'm sorry. I got the spirit of the season on the brain, I guess."
Regina plowed into her and the two went tumbling into a snow drift piled up by the small entry fence. Regina resisted Emma's attempts to pull her hands away from Emma's throat. "You guess? You guess! I look like a damned elf and you guess?"
"You make a hot elf," Emma muttered.
Taking advantage of the surprise, Emma pushed Regina off of her. "Forget it." She stood up and Regina noted the turned down lips and the downcast eyes. Emma really was sorry.
"Now, let's try again. And this time, perhaps you could have bigger thoughts?"
Emma closed her eyes. Suddenly there was a bark that sounded very close. It disrupted her concentration, but it also set her heart racing.
Regina resisted Emma's pull. "Archie's dog is a sweetheart."
"Regina, he hates me. I'm always pulling him away from his little bachelor trips around the neighborhood." Emma then pointed at both of them. "We're both just big enough to make satisfying doggy bites."
"You are ridiculous." Regina looked at Archie coming down the sidewalk, Pongo trotting on his leash out in front.
Pongo stopped and sniffed at Regina's outstretched hand… well, her entire body actually, his breath huffing out and blasting her perfectly arranged hair to chaos.
Then he licked her.
"C'mon, Pongo. Stop sniffing Granny's garden gnomes. Let's go inside. We're late."
When Pongo moved away, Emma stared at the mess that had become of Regina Mills. The Santa cap was askew and soaked with dog slobber. The fur jacket had been pulled off one shoulder by the dalmatian's eager tongue, and the brunette had fallen to the ground, one black snow boot now half off her foot as it hung in the air. Emma put her hand over her mouth, but it didn't stop the snort of laughter.
If looks could kill — thank god Regina didn't have access to her magic — Emma Swan knew she would be very, very dead right now.
"I'm sorry," Emma tried again.
"I will destroy you, if it is the last thing I do."
"Hang on. Let me try to clean you up at least." Emma pulled Regina to her feet and then lifted one hand away to start moving it in the air between them.
Regina grasped Emma's hand, holding it still. "Don't."
"But I was just going to change your clothes."
"I'm more likely to end up naked and freeze to death. Just. Just. Don't."
Emma sat down on the ground. "Look. I'm sorry." She looked forlornly at Regina. "I gotta do something right eventually. I gotta fix this."
"Let's just…" Regina trailed off, sitting down next to Emma on the ground. "All right. Let's think about this calmly."
"No, you're not."
"Of course I am." Emma was sarcastic, running off a litany of her faults. "I shrunk us to doll size and we're stuck outside in the snow in the cold and wet and you don't have access to your magic, and I'm a total screw up with mine. What's not to be calm about?"
"You know magic is emotion. So you need to be calm to focus."
There was a brief silence as Emma let that sink in. Regina closed her eyes.
"I thought about you, you know."
"What?" Regina's eyes snapped open.
"The only times I've been successful using magic I was thinking about you."
"About what I said in our lessons?"
"No, about you." Emma pulled her knees up to her chest and wrapped her arms around them, hugging herself. "Regina Mills. You are the most amazing person I have ever met. You've got it together. Even when life is falling apart you manage to find a way to pull it together. You raised our kid to be the most wonderful guy. Even when you plot and plan, if it doesn't come out the way you want, you don't give up. But you never settle. You always go after everything. Me," Emma added. "Me, I'm a mess. I dropped out of high school, got stuck in jail, pregnant, because I believed somebody when he said he loved me. I stumble around, breaking curses, fighting dragons, and Lost Boys, and Evil Shadows, and I never know what I'm doing, or half the time why. Why it wouldn't just be easier to give up and go home and forget anyone ever thought of me as a Savior, or a princess, or a —"
Regina's mouth shut off Emma's litany of self-recriminations. When she pulled away her thumb brushed Emma's cheek as her fingers cupped her chin. "Precious," she murmured. "Emma Swan, you are not a mess. You are noble and earnest, and full of such potential."
"But, but you… hate me."
"I don't hate you. I can't stand your parents, and I think that you let them influence who you think you should be far too much. But I don't hate you."
"Seriously. I push because I know you are unstoppable when you set your mind to something. And I… admire that."
Emma straightened, lowering her legs and stretching them out in front of her, lifting a hand to Regina's hand on her cheek pulling it away. "Let me try again?"
Regina searched Emma's gaze. Finally, she nodded and closed her eyes.
A flash of magic rippled over her and she opened her eyes.
Emma and she leaned against each other against the fence at the entrance to Granny's. She smiled. She could see over the fence to the street beyond.
"You did it."
"Thank you," Emma said. She cupped Regina's cheek and tugged the woman's jaw. Their lips met in another kiss.