What Makes a Family
Throughout her life, Regina seldom had good days. A good day was classified as extra time spent riding Richontante, sneaking away with Daniel, catching her mother in a lighter mood... But this day was unlike anything she had ever experienced before- she felt as if she were in heaven, a perfect world where the sun shone bright and her happiness was completely undeniable.
Regina held Robin's hand tightly as she lead him through rows and rows of men's clothing, feeling a lot like Ruby as she did so. It made her remember about going shopping for Roland when they first came back to Storybrooke; she grabbed whatever she thought would fit and continued on through the aisles. She practically had to force Roland and Henry to stay at home while the couple dashed to the mall for his new wardrobe change. Robin was a good sport about it all- he was with Regina again, and that was all that mattered. They had about a thousand things do to, but the both of them were more than excited to go through it all.
"I wasn't expecting your realm to be this... Big."
Regina laughed lightly. "You'll get used to it," she reassured, "after all, Roland did. I made Storybrooke all by myself, you should be proud of me."
Robin absolutely loved seeing her so happy. "I am so entirely proud of you," he smiled, watching her pull more t shirts off the rack.
"Everyone will love to see you- I mean this is all too perfect, we can be a family now, have friends, be happy, have a baby together... You're excited about our baby, right?"
He had to stop her by kissing her softly. "More excited than I've ever been before. But let's talk about this when we're not in the middle of a clothing store."
Giving him a look, she unfolded a pair of jeans and sizing them to his body.
"Do people here really wear this stuff?" Robin asked, looking inquisitively at the clothing she had piled in their shopping cart.
"Yes, look at Roland- he refused to wear the new clothes I got him, so I had to hide all his Enchanted Forest stuff in the closet. He's been fine ever since."
Robin wondered how their lives had went for the four months he was away. How did his four year old adapt to the change? How on earth was Regina able to deal with a baby all by herself? The responses his mind was giving him made him dizzy.
"So, have you been keeping up with being the mayor this whole time?" He asked, truly curious to know. Of course he knew Regina to be a workaholic, but Robin had no idea how she could manage the kids, as well as being pregnant. On top of all that, she still looked unbelievably gorgeous.
Regina found a second to break away from the massive selection of shoes she was picking through to smile slightly and shake her head.
"Belle had taken over while we left for Neverland, and I told her she could stay in the job. Who knows, one of these months I could bring myself to do it again, but not now."
The name struck familiar to him- he quickly remembered Rumple talking about being in love with her. After all they had been through, he hoped the man had found her.
"Well you can still be the queen of my castle, that's for sure." He joked, letting his arm wrap around the small of her back.
Regina let out another small laugh. He loved the way her laugh sounded; it was soft and absolutely carefree.
"And you can be my king- my lionheart." Her fingers grazed over his tattoo, making his skin shiver to her touch. Four months had been way too long.
"You wanna get back to the house? I think we have enough clothes for you."
"Alright, you'll have to catch me up on everything that happened while I was gone."
That could take a while- lots of things happened. Regina didn't want to put Robin through riding in a car just yet, considering the fact that Roland had puked all over her backseat the first time she took him. So they walked the few minutes it took to get back to her house, hauling the many clothes they had bought with them as they went.
Regina remembered how it was taking her four year old out in public for the first time; everybody stared like they were put under a spotlight. But she didn't mind- if anything, she loved being able to gloat the fact that she had Robin Hood all to himself. She knew there were still some residents of Storybrooke that didn't believe she of all people could get a guy like him.
"All these villagers... Do they accept you?"
His ignorance was beyond adorable. Regina would have to teach him everything about the new land he was in if he was ever going to blend in with everyone else.
"Most of them, yes. Now that I don't have power over them, they don't see me as a threat."
Well, everyone except extremely violent grandmothers.
"How could they see you as a threat?"
Robin knew just about everything about her, all the bad things, the terrible things, everything. Yet he still treated her like a princess.
"Well I suppose I deserved some of it-"
Her voice trailed off when she noticed the front door of her house wide open. Will had a box in his arms as he carried it out of the house, placing it in his already crowded car.
"What is he doing?" Regina asked, clutching his hand tighter as they neared the house.
"Will, what's up?"
The man looked up at the couple in surprise.
"What're you doing with all your things?"
An unsettling feeling soon came over her. She didn't like it at all.
"Regina, you just got your fiancé back," Will began, "it wouldn't be right for me to stay here anymore. Besides, you'll need my room for when your baby comes."
Regina didn't know what to say. Her eyes lingered on his car full of things, soon realizing she couldn't do anything to change his mind.
Henry came out the door carrying his Playstation in his arms. "Are you sure you can't leave this here so I can have it?"
Will took it from him and set it on top of the boxes that lined his backseat.
"Sorry, the video games are mine," he told him, making Henry pout back at him. "Get your mom to buy you one."
It was all happening so fast. Will had been there for her through all of her bouts of crying, rages of anger, especially when she thought all was lost.
"Where... Where will you go?"
"Granny's- Ruby cut me a deal for the first few month's rent. I've been saving up for a couple weeks now, I knew I would have to leave at some point."
The reality of it all was painful. She knew he would have to move out, but never did she think about it actually happening.
Roland was tearing up as he ran down the front steps, his arms open as he crashed into his uncle's embrace. "I don't want you to go!"
Will held him tight. "Don't worry, I'll just be a few minutes away. You can come over whenever you want, Henry too."
The twelve year old wrapped his arms around him. "Will... I'm sorry I said those things to you the other day. I didn't mean them. You're a really cool uncle."
Will didn't know what to say. Whatever happened, he wasn't going to cry- not in front of his brother. He was not going to go back to being constantly tormented by him.
"You're not so bad yourself kid," he managed to get out, setting Roland back onto the ground gently.
Then there was Regina. He almost cringed when he saw the tears in her eyes; oh how he despised to see her cry. She wrapped her arms around him tightly, never wanting to let go.
"You better come to visit every week... At least." She said, trying to keep her emotions under control, "and have fun with Ruby. I think you have a shot with her, don't mess it up."
He was going to miss having her around to constantly badger her about things.
"I'll certainly try not to."
"Killian still lives there too, maybe you could make a friend."
He rolled his eyes. "Maybe. As long as he knows how to have a good drink."
He managed to make her smile as she wiped her eyes.
"I'm really proud of you Will, don't forget that."
That was the first time anyone had ever told him that.
"I think it'll be fun for the both of us to pick up this brother thing again," Robin said, holding Roland in his arms as he cried.
"It'll be... Interesting." He told him, grabbing his keys out of his pocket. "But I really should be going. I left the room spotless, just like it was. Thank you so much for letting me stay, Regina."
Then, he got into his car, started it up, and waved a simple goodbye to his family before driving off. That was it. He was gone.
The four of them stood there in front of the house, silently watching his beaten down car until it vanished around a corner.
"Don't worry," Regina spoke, "he won't be gone forever. He'll just live somewhere else."
She couldn't be sad on such a happy day- her love was back with her, nothing could ruin that. But still, it somewhat hurt to see him drive off. He had been her closest friend over the past few months, the person she could talk to about anything. He was there for her. He listened. He saved her life.
"Why don't you and Roland set the table for lunch," Regina proposed, resting her hands on Henry's shoulders. "You must all be starving- especially you, Robin."
"Can we go to Granny's instead?" Henry asked, "Dad needs to try the food there. And everyone can meet him there- like a party."
She exchanged glances with Robin, who simply shrugged back in return.
"I guess we could do that. Just give your father and I a few minutes, I need to show him around the house."
It was exactly how things went with Roland. She introduced to him the concept of a light switch, the television, and all the household appliances. Roland taught him how to make toast. Soon, she led him upstairs and to her- their- bedroom.
"Holy cow, this place is huge!" He exclaimed, making it seem like she lived in a castle.
Regina smiled. "It's all ours, bed in all."
Robin let his hands trail across the soft sheets that covered her kind sized bed. It all didn't seem real. What was a guy like him doing in such an extravagant place?
"There's one more thing I have to show you," she said as she got out all the clothes bought from the store, laying them out on the bed. The doors to the bathroom opened, and Regina pointed towards the shower. "You have to get clean before I take you anywhere else, sorry." She let out a sly smile as he glanced at it curiously.
"You bathe... Standing up?"
"Well, sort of." Regina replied, opening the door and showing him the lever, "you just pull this, and water comes out of that spout up there. Turn it to the left to get cold water, and the right for hot water."
He couldn't believe what he was hearing. Hot water coming out of a spout? It seemed absurd.
"But what if I... Need help figuring everything out?"
His lips were hovering over hers, sending shivers up her spine. It took everything in her power to resist him.
"I have two kids to entertain," she said, "besides, I think you'll get it."
Robin's eyes showed obvious signs of disappointment, but he kissed her anyways."Try to be fast, I want to try those new clothes on you."
She secretly hoped he didn't mess up something as basic as a shower as she traveled back downstairs to check on her kids. Even though Will had only been officially gone for about ten minutes, the house still seemed emptier. Regina couldn't bear to go into his empty room yet. But he was right, they did need a nursery. She had plans to go baby shopping with Ruby before things changed.
"I used your phone to text Emma and Neal about the party," Henry told her, sitting on the couch next to Roland.
"I guess it will be a party," she said, sitting down next to them and smiling. "How are you guys feeling about Dad being back?"
Roland beamed instantly. "Amazing!"
"Yeah, best day ever!" Henry added.
"I'd say so," she smiled, "things are going to be a whole lot better now, I promise. We're going to be a family."
Her two kids seemed overjoyed with the word.
"Will you and daddy get married now?" Roland asked, playing with the ring that had been on her finger since they came to Storybrooke.
"Of course we will- but all that matters right now is the baby. I can't even begin to think about a wedding until after the baby is born."
Henry hadn't thought about that. He had never been to a wedding before, but he figured things were simple and quick. Apparently not.
"Marriage isn't what makes a family, though," Regina told them, "I mean technically it does, but as long as we love each other and we're all happy, we'll be a family."
Roland believed every word she said. After about twenty minutes downstairs, she heard Robin yell something from inside the shower.
"Honey, how do you work this razor blade thing?"
Her eyes instantly widened. "Hold on, I gotta go help your father." She told the kids, getting up and heading back for the bedroom.Robin was wrapped in a towel, standing before the sink and holding a shaver in his hand.
"You're going to cut yourself," she told him, rushing over to gently take it from his hands.
Robin let her smother his face with a strange white foam. She guided him through the steps as she glided the razor across his jawline, praying she wouldn't mess up. Never before had she shaved someone else- quite honestly, she didn't know what she was doing.
After she finished, she let her hands run over his smooth skin. "There; that looks a whole lot better." She bit her bottom lip seductively and turned to fetch a pair of boxers from her bed.
"Time for a fashion show- I want to see what looks good on you."Robin dropped his towel and pulled them on. He couldn't believe how comfortable they were. Regina then handed him a pair of blue jeans and a belt.
This was more than enjoyable for her; Regina hadn't realized how much she missed seeing his toned body.
"You look amazing in v- neck shirts," she almost breathed out, taking in his new look for all it was worth.
Robin glanced at the mirror to examine his new appearance. "I look so... Different."
She both smiled and nodded at the same time. "You look so attractive though."
"Well that's all that matters, right?" He asked sarcastically, taking her hand as she lead him out of the bathroom and down the stairs.
"Holy cow Dad!" Henry nearly yelled as soon as he saw his parents enter the living room, "you look so different!"
Roland couldn't even apprehend the fact that his father was wearing clothes from Storybrooke.
"Thanks," Robin said with a smile, ruffling his hair, "you ready to head to Granny's?"
He couldn't be more ready. Regina hauled them all in her Mercedes, soon finding that her small car wasn't nearly big enough for her ever growing family. As she started the car, she payed close attention to her fiancé.
"Do you feel sick at all?"
Robin shook his head. "No, but aren't these machines hazardous? I mean, what if another one hits us? We'll die!"
Regina couldn't help but smile. "I'm a good driver, the chances of someone hitting us in such a small town is very small."
Still, he looked uncertain as he glanced outside the window, watching the scenery melt away into a blur as they hit thirty miles per hour.
They arrived at Granny's a few minutes later, all four of them were famished. Just as they reached the door, another couple caught their sight- Rumplestiltskin and Belle, their arms linked as they walked fork the sidewalk towards the restaurant. Regina instantly darkened her expression. "Why on earth did you keep him from us for an entire four months?"
Before she could continue, Robin put a and on her shoulder. "Regina, it's alright. I'm back now, that's all that matters."
"What a pleasure it is to see you too," Rumple said, in his usual sarcastic manner.
"I really hope we can be friends," Belle said with a slight smile, "Robin's right, our boys are back and that's enough for now."
Regina still remained skeptical of him, only seeing her dark and twisted mentor. She hoped Robin would tell her what happened one day. For now, she had him back. So they let the couple pass with a slight nod, and they entered the diner.
As soon as they did, they were surprised to see a sea of friendly faces awaiting them.
"Welcome back Robin!" David and Snow both said in unison, sending him friendly smiles.
The man didn't even get a chance to talk to them; Ruby was in front of them in a flash.
"Regina, is this your man?!" She blurted out, sizing him up from head to toe.
"God, he's hot!"
Regina immediately put a hand on her shoulder, shooting her a warning glance as her cheeks brightened. "Don't you have to, I don't know, work?"
Ruby gave her a pointed look. "Just saying. I'm Ruby by the way."
Robin was too fixated on the red streaks in her hair to hear what she was saying.
He shook her offered hand and shook it.
"You're going to have one attractive baby," she muttered, so only Regina could hear.
She responded by shoving her gently back to the direction of the kitchen. "Bye, Ruby."
Taking Robin's hand, she directed him and their kids to chairs up at the booth. Granny seemed surprised when she saw him.
"So this is your boyfriend, huh." She asked, a twinkle in her eye as she picked him over thoroughly.
Regina still felt awkward around her, she couldn't get the scene of her almost strangling her to death.
"Yes, this is him." She said, stealing a glance towards him, "and he's just been through hell and back- so let's start him off with a burger and a beer, get him whatever he wants after that."
"To Robin!" Emma's voice sounded behind him, raising her glass, "we're all so glad you're finally back."
Everyone in the diner followed her action.
That's how the rest of their night went; absolutely perfect.