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Now You Know

By jehc

Romance

Chapter 1

The court house in Storybrook Maine was filled to capacity. The citizens of the town were joined together to witness the trial and expected demise of their former mayor, Regina Mills. In another life she was called the evil queen. Their new mayor Snow White, was also a queen in that same past life. The two women were mortal enemies.

Regina was to be tried for a litany of crimes including murder of her husband the King Leopold and the attempted murder of her step daughter Snow White. No one doubted the outcome of the trial. It was truly only the sentence that would be in question. As one of her crimes was casting a curse that brought her entire kingdom to Maine there was no shortage of witnesses. The curse created a place out of time that removed everyone’s memories of their true home therefore taking away the happy endings for those who were lucky enough to have them.

Snow White called the meeting to order and addressed the accused. “Regina Mills you are accused of crimes against the people and crown of the kingdom of the Enchanted Forest. How do you plead?”

With a blank face Regina gazed at her step-daughter and then out at the crowd. Her heart clenched painfully as she saw her son looking excited at the proceedings. The lack of concern on his face sealed once and for all Regina’s belief that she was unlovable and fueled her final decision.

“As wife of your royal father I am a member of the royal family and there for exempt from such proceedings.”

From the crowed someone yelled, “And his murderer as well, let’s not forget that!” Murmmers of agreement could be heard through out the crowd.

Snow White called for order and replied, “Then you will remain in custody while your crimes are established and a verdict decreed.”

The crowd got excited and began to chant, “Burn the guilty witch, burn her.” Enjoying the power of her victory Snow waited a few beats before once again calling the citizens to order.

Regina shook her head and with a venomous smile on her face removed a bracelet from her wrist. The crowed gasped. The bracelet was created to suppress Regina’s powerful magic. She was not supposed to be able to remove it. The fear in the room was palpable as everyone waited to see what would come next. She handed the useless item to Snow and said, “I’m done playing this ridiculous game. You have held me because I was willing to be held. Now I will go home and await your findings and my sentence.”

“And then what?” Snow asked acerbically. She was bitter that Regina’s restored power would make it impossible to bend her to her will.

Regina made eye contact with her former step-daughter as she replied. “Bring me your decision and I will yield,”

Snow looked at her surprised. “You understand the probable out come?”

Regina’s tone was sarcastic yet her expression sincere as she continued. Giving a slight bow to her head and said, “I do Your Majesty and I will submit.” With a wave of her hand Regina disappeared in a cloud of purple smoke. Snow stood shocked by both the agreement and the use of her title.

After dismissing her council and the crowd Snow was approached by her daughter Emma and Henry, her grandson. When the curse Regina cast was upon them Queen Snow and her husband Prince Charming placed Emma in a magic wardrobe to keep her from it. According to the powerful Blue Fairy she was destined to come back on her 28th birthday and break the curse. Baby Emma would grow up to be the savior of them all. The result was a baby just a few minutes old being found by the side of the road in this new world. Emma’s childhood in the foster system was rough. When she was still a teenager Emma found herself imprisoned and pregnant due to her boyfriend’s betrayal. Her son was born and as the result of the machinations of an evil wizard, Mr Gold who was also known as Rumplestilstsken and The Dark one, the child was adopted by then Mayor Mills.

“Grama,” Henry asked, “what’s the probable outcome that you and mom were talking about?”

Snow looked to Emma for help but her daughter would not meet her eyes. “Well, Henry, Regina knows she is being accused of some very big crimes. She is aware that her punishment will be severe.”

“So she's going to be in Jail for a very long time?”

“Something like that,” Snow replied as she turned to move away.

Emma spoke up sharply, “Tell him the truth. Tell him what will happen to his mother.”

Snow turned back and look at her grandson. “You know we are doing this by the rules of our home. The most serious of her crimes were committed there.”

“I know, you are the queen again when we are in the court house.” He glowed with the implications of himself as a prince.

“Thats right and in the enchanted forest the things that she has done are punished by death or banishment.”

Henry started shaking. He was clearly surprised that the punishment might be so drastic. “But they won't be right. You won’t kill my mom, right?”

Snow winced at the word kill and her voice shook as she answered. “I have a council to help make the decision but it is likely that she'll die as a result of her many crimes.”

Henry started to back away from her shaking his head. Tears were streaming down his face as he repeated “No, no, no!” Emma grabbed him in a bear hug to keep him from running off. He sobbed into her neck, “That’s not what's supposed to happen. Everyone supposed to get their happy ending, everyone!” After a few moments he could speak again and he said to his other mother in a husky and broken voice. “You have to warn her. Go warn her so she can hide!”

Emma shook her head no as she said, “We don't have to warn her, she knows. You saw her tell Snow she knows.”

“So she'll hide right, she’ll run away?”

“I don’t think so honey, she told Snow she would take the punishment. She’s done a lot of bad things but she almost always keeps her promises.” Emma had tears in her eyes as she continued to hold tightly to her son.

“But, but, how can we help her?”

“She shouldn't be alone tonight Henry. Maybe in a little while we will go keep her company so she won't be too lonely.”

Henry tried to pull away. “No, I can’t go. She is going to die and it is all my fault. She is going to hate me. Please don't make me go!”

Emma pulled him in more tightly. “I am sure she doesn't hate you or blame you, but I wont make you go. I need to though, I can't make her face this alone.” A friendship between the two women was a hard time coming, but they had become friends,

“He can come home with us,” Snow said soothingly. When she reached out to touch him and he pulled away so harshly he almost knocked Emma over.

“I’m not going with you,” he yelled. “You are going to kill my mom. I hate you!”

Snow pulled her hand away as the tears she had been holding back all day began to fall. “I know this may be hard to believe but I am feeling very sad too. There was a time when she was my mom.” She paused as she choked back a sob. “There was a time I foolishly thought Regina loved me and I did love her.”

“Then why are you hurting her?” Henry asked though a fresh bout of sobs.

“Well,” Snow replied. “I guess for the same reason you are. She’s the Evil Queen.”

At the reminder of his own behavior and how much he knew it hurt his mother Henry wrenched himself from Emma’s arms and dropped to his knees. With his hands covering his face he began to cry even harder then he had before.

Emma snapped at Snow saying, “That was cruel!”

“No,” Snow replied sharply. “That was true.”


In a plume of purple smoke Regina appeared in her living room. The cold mask of indifference left her face and was replaced by tears. She closed her eyes and saw her son looking so proud to be a prince and excited to have helped break the curse. The memory of his eyes sparking with excitement as Snow condemned her felt like a knife to the heart. Regina walked to the mantel and picked up a framed photo of Henry. She spoke to him as she looked at it thought her tears.

“I’m sorry Henry, I wanted a family. I forget that loving doesn't make you lovable and I do love you.” Regina took a deep shuddering breath and continued. “Emma will care for you, you will be happy with a mother who you can love.” She put the photo down and began to wonder around the room mumbling to herself. “It’s almost over. Unloved daughter, unloved mother, unloved wife, I’m so tired of trying.” She repeated the word “tired” and a wry half smile touched her face.

Regina sat at her desk and wrote two letters and then removed her heart. She turned the red and black marbled organ in her hand as she spoke to it. “You have been more trouble then you were worth.” She called a charmed box to herself and placed her heart in it. “I won’t miss you” she said as she put the box in her desk and charmed it locked.”

With a wave of her hand Regina transformed herself in to the feared evil queen. Her gown, makeup and jewelry were perfect as she laid down on her chase lounge. She glanced to the mantel and spoke again to the picture of her son. “Goodbye Henry. The young queen closed her eyes and spoke a curse. In moments she was lost in an enchanted sleep.


Emma and Henry spent the next few hours at the sheriff’s office. It was the only place in town that they felt comfortable and were not surrounded by people celebrating the expected demise of the woman they called evil. Emma called Archie, one of the few people who was not celebrating, and arranged for Henry to stay with him for the night.

“I hate to leave you this upset Henry.” Emma said as she paused with indecision, not sure if leaving was the right thing to do.

“Go Mom, she needs someone.” Emma nodded and left.

As she walked from Archie’s house to Regina’s Emma’s mind played back many of the interactions in their relationship. No matter what the argument Emma could always sense a deep love directed at her son, their son. No matter who she was in her other life, in this one she gave everything to Henry, everything that Emma couldn’t. And to Emma that was all that was important. Emma smiled thinking about how the two women were often at odds. Even so Emma was enthralled by Regina’s beauty, sarcastic wit and intelligence. As she began to knock on the door Emma faced the facts of her feelings. The Savior was in love with the Evil Queen.

After several minutes with no answer Emma tried the door. Finding it locked she took a deep breath and waved her hand over it. She tried the knob again and it turned easily. When the curse broke it was discovered that Emma had magic. It was not common in the Enchanted forest but not so rare as to be a concern. While Regina was in custody she spent time helping Emma understand and use her magic. Emma wasn't comfortable with it, but she wasn't afraid to try.

“Regina,” she called out as she entered the house. “Regina its Emma, are you here?” Her calls were met with silence. She continued to look through the house and gasped in concern when she reached the study. She found Regina laid out on her chaise lounge. She was perfectly arranged as if she was ready for burial. Emma quickly ascertained that the queen was not dead but under a spell.

It was clearly the queen not the mayor she had found. Her highness was wearing a red brocade low cut dress. Her neck and wrists were covered in a wide choker and bracelet set covered in diamonds. Her hair and makeup were flawless as if she was going to an important royal reception. Regina had even completed the look with a tiara that complimented her jewelry.

“Oh Regina,” Emma said as she gently touched the sleeping woman’s hand. I really need to talk to you.” Her voice hitched with emotion. “Why did you do this when I can’t let you go without telling you how I feel?”

There was no indication that she was being heard but Emma continued anyway. “I know you think you aren’t going to be mourned,” Tears were streaming down Emma’s face. “I need you to know I will mourn you, that I will miss you and I want so much to tell you that I love you.” She leaned in closer as she continued. “Don’t be mad at me. If this works I’m sure you could put yourself back under.” She paused to see if there was a change in the sleeping woman. When there was none she continued. “Here goes.” Emma leaned in and kissed Regina gently on the cheek, nothing happened. “I guess I’m not your true love.” Emma said and ran her finger over the spot she had kissed. “But I really wanted you to know that you are mine.” Believing she would never get another chance Emma leaned in again and kissed Regina softly on the lips. When she pulled away there was a flash of light and she fell to the ground unconscious.

When she awoke Emma hopefully jumped to her feet only to find Regina unchanged. Emma closed her eyes against a headache that suddenly formed as flashing images and feelings were suddenly bombarding her. It was as if her kiss had syphoned off Regina’s memory. The queen’s earliest memories right through to the day they met were now copied to Emma’s mind.

Emma was taken for a ride through Regina’s life. She was the tortured daughter, the naive student, the abused wife and surprisingly, the loving step-mother. Regina’s love for Henry was no surprise, but knowing that Regina had actually loved her stepdaughter was quite a revelation. As she learned about Regina’s life Emma’s tears came fast and furious. “I am so sorry” she said. “I am so fucking, incredibly sorry that this was your life.”

Emma noticed two envelopes on the side table next to the couch. One was addressed to her and one to Snow White. With shaking hands she read hers.

Miss Swan,

I don't want Henry to think I have taken the cowards way out. You must tell him that there is no other way for me to keep my promise to Snow. Incarcerating or banishing a sorceress is almost impossible so I have no doubt that my sentence will be death. When that time comes my magic will never let me submit to execution. Therefore, I must be unaware.

I saw excitement on Henry’s face today. I am sure that being a part of the evil queen’s defeat is exhilarating. I know he believes that due to my past I couldn't love him and I deserve the punishment I will receive. Please help him understand that even the unlovable are capable of love. And I do love him always.

I always knew the curse would be broken, if not by you then some other way. Rumpelstiltskin had an agenda and had you failed there would have been a back up plan. I fought you because I was not ready for this day, even as I knew it would and should come. You are the savior that your parents and son wanted you to be. I hold no ill will.

RM

PS I leave all that I own and Henry in your care. Cooking lessons may be a good idea.

Emma called Archie who agreed to keep Henry for the night. There was no way she would leave Regina alone and vulnerable. By morning Emma had created a protection spell to keep the queen safe while she was away.


Showered, and dressed in clothes borrowed from Regina’s closet, Emma arrived at Storybrook’s court house. Snow White was calling things to order as she walked through the door.

“We all heard,” Snow began, “Regina will not be speaking for herself. As a result I have decided that we can move on to sentencing her for her crimes.” She looked over to her council for agreement. As they nodded many of the townsfolk were murmuring suggestions for the Evil Queens demise.

“Actually,” Emma spoke up from the back of the room. “I have some questions.”

Snow gave her daughter a rather patronizing smile as she replied. “Sure honey we can go over everything you want when we are done here.”

Emma’s voice showed clear irritation as spoke. “No, Mary Margaret or Snow White or Your Majesty or Mom or who ever the heck you are right now. I don't think you understand. I want to ask you some questions and then I will speak for Regina.” There was an audible gasp from the crowed. Emma’s disrespect to their Queen and support of her nemesis seemed to have shocked them all.

“Emma, honey,” Snow’s voice was even more patronizing then before, “you don't know what she did to us, how we suffered.” She turned to her counsel as if to continue.

“Don’t you talk down to me like that.” Emma’s anger was sharp as she continued. “Don’t you dare speak to me about suffering!” Snow turned back to her daughter wide eyed. “You think you suffered? You think a few years of hide and seek compares to the life I lived? It was a hell of a lot longer for me and when I was hungry, hurt or tired there wasn't a dwarf in sight!”

Snow’s face showed both shock and shame as she responded “Fine Emma, ask what you will.” She sat down behind the judges desk and looked at her daughter with cautious expectation.

“I guess I would like to start with King Leopold. They were married for ten years before he died?”

Snow replied sharply. “Before she killed him you mean. They were married for ten years before she murdered your grandfather.”

“I was told my grandfather was a kind man.” Snow nodded. “Was he kind to his teenage bride?”

“Yes,” Snow replied with confidence. “I remember he was always giving her wonderful presents, usually jewelry.”

“And she liked it?”

“Oh yes,” Snow smiled at the memory, “from the day they married I never saw her without one of the lovely chokers and bracelet sets he gave her. Even if I went to visit her early in the morning she already had them on.”

“But you did get there too early once, didn’t you?” Emma’s eyes bore in to her mothers. “How did she explain the bruises around her neck? What did she say about the marks around her wrists that you would never have seen had you arrived just a few minutes later?”

Snow faltered a little as she replied. “She had an accident while riding. A tree branch wiped around her neck and her writs got caught in the reigns.”

Emma let out a sharp breath. “You believed that at Seven?” Snow nodded. “And when, over the years, the bruises were too big to be hidden by her,” Emma used her fingers to make air quotes as she said, “wonderful jewelry” with derision. “Did you still believe that? At 15, when you saw it again, did you even ask?”

“I…” Snow couldn't seem to answer so she just shook her head no.

Emma closed her eyes and then continued. “While Regina was your step-mother did she love you?”

Snow sneered, “She acted like she did. I thought she did. I believed she loved me right up until she murdered my father, took over the throne and sent me in the woods to be killed.” The crowd murmured their anger at what Regina had done to Snow White.

“Before that,” Emma continued. “How was she treated at court?”

Snow’s answers had lost all hesitation. “She was treated like a queen. Until her betrayal she was treated very well.” She caught Emma’s eye and said with sincerity, “I loved her.”

Emma reached over and touched her mother’s hand. She could see the pain her misplaced trust had caused her. “Your birthdays were always a big deal at court, right. Regina threw you big parties.”

Snow’s smile had a faraway look as she was remembering happier times. “Oh no, the parties were my father’s doing. I hated them.” She chuckled and continued. “Step-mother would tell father I was tired or ill and I always left as soon as I could. She usually did something with me earlier in the day. She always made it special.”

Emma smiled gently and asked, “Your birthday was May 24th?” Snow nodded in the affirmative. “What did she do to make it special?”

Snow smiled and almost whispered her answer as if she were sharing a secret. “There was a special present at the end of my bed when I woke up. It was always something father would never have thought of. But the real gift was the time we spent once I opened it.”

Emma cocked her head to the side in question.

“It was always something that would require lessons and Step-mother would attend with me and watch my progress. The first was a bow and arrow set, then a staff and the next year a sword. She would give me special treats as I progressed. Father never knew.”

“I see” Emma said sardonically. “So it was Regina who made sure you knew how to defend your self.” She looked at the crowd to see if they could appreciate the irony.

“And Queen Regina’s birthday, how did you celebrate?”

“I don’t really recall step-mother having a party.” Snows voice was quiet but then picked up as she continued, “She was very shy I think it would have embarrassed her.”

“That makes sense,” Emma agreed. “How was it celebrated?”

“There was never much of a fuss. As I said she was shy back then.”

“At the time,” Emma continued, “she was your beloved step-mother. What did you do for her? Did you have a special tea or make a card?”

“I don’t really remember,” Snow said. “It was a long time ago.”

“Well, sure,” Emma responded, “when you were seven it was, but when you were fifteen?”

Snow became angry at that. “I am sure we did something Emma, she was a queen for crying out loud. I just don't remember.”

“Actually Snow White you did nothing. You never gave your step-mother so much as a birthday hug, not once.”

“Oh please,” Snow replied with disgust. “I don't know what sob stories she has been telling you but a few missed birthdays are no excuse for what she did to me.”

“May 24th, her birthday is May 24th! I think that if it was mentioned even once you would have remembered a shared birthday. But you never asked did you?” Snow looked at Emma mouth agape and blushing with embarrassment. “It wasn't completely forgotten though. Every year, in the morning she woke up to a little treat from the cook at her bed side. And in the evening there was always a beating for another year without producing a son.”

Snow’s eyes teared as she said in a voice pleading for understanding, “I didn't know Emma, truly I didn't know.”

There was no understanding in Emma’s voice as she replied. “You didn't want to know, you didn’t know because you didn’t want to.” Emma took a deep breath. “There are many other things that you didn’t know. Many things that you couldn't have known.”

“How do you know these things? I can’t imagine she told you.” Snow inquired.

Emma nodded and said in an almost bitter tone. “You are right she didn't tell me, and she will fireball me to hell and back when she finds out I have spoken of it. To answer your question, I took her memories. I took the information without her knowledge or consent.”

“How did you do it? How were you able to do such a thing?”

“Magic,” was Emma’s one word reply. There was no way she was going to admit to a failed attempt at true loves kiss.

The crowd was silent as if noise would end the unfolding drama. They were barely breathing as they found themselves privy to such private information.

“Tell me about your father’s death.”

“It was the day before my birthday or our birthday I guess. I overheard some servants talking about the king and queen arguing in the morning. The next thing I knew the palace was in an uproar. Father was dead and Regina was in her rooms protected by magic. She didn't come out until after he was buried.” Snow shook her head at the memory. “The next time I saw her she was actually crackling with magic. Everyone was so afraid. She called a council meeting. When it was over three councilmen were dead and she was declared queen.”

“Thank you,” said Emma. “What were the plans for your birthday?”

Snow rolled her eyes. “Finally a party I was looking forward to. Royalty from many lands were attending. It was my coming out ball.”

“Here is the first of many things that you didn’t know. It was not a birthday party. The cancelled ball was to celebrate your betrothal.” Snow’s head jerked in surprise. “Your father had come to agreement with King Thomas of Alturna. You were to marry his second son Prince Albert.”

Snow huffed and shook her head. “Oh please you can't actually believe that. I was a teenager and Prince Albert was 40 something.” Emma stared at her mother silently. “My father would never have tied me to a man that much older.” Her voice sounded less confidant as Emma continued to stare and arched an eyebrow.

Emma continued, “Regina begged him to reconsider. He wouldn't listen. He had already spent most of the financial settlement that was part of the deal.” Emma took a deep breath and went on. “Your kind father slapped his queen of ten years across the face and told her that if she had provided him a son it would not have been an issue. He told her if she wanted someone to blame for your fate to look in the mirror.”

Snow shook her head with tears streaming down her face it was clear she wanted to doubt Emma’s words but knew they were true. “Queen Regina killed King Leopold and members of his council. After years of violence at her husband’s hands she finally killed the bastard.” When a member of the council made a noise to object to Emma’s words she almost cut him in half with her glare. She looked back at her mother “I'm not claiming that she committed these killings in self defense because she didn’t. It wasn't self defense Snow. It was you defense! Under her care you grew from daddy’s pampered little pet to a strong young woman who could take care of her self and her kingdom. There was no way she would allow you, her daughter to suffer her miserable fate. You may think her love for you was just for show, but if so it was one hell of an act!”

Snow held up to hand to stop further questions. She seemed to be emotionally exhausted by the proceedings. Shaking her head as if to clear her thoughts she said, “We will take an hour for lunch and reconvene here.” Snow and Emma walked to their apartment. Both women wanting to avoid the crowds.

“You have her memories?” Snow asked quietly as she poured some tea.

“Yea,” Emma said quietly, “and they really hurt.”

“So you know how she feels about things?”

“About somethings, yes” Emma replied.

“About me?” Snow practically whispered the question.

Emma rolled her eyes. “You didn't hear enough? She killed for you, she ruined her whole life trying to save yours.”

Snow’s smile was tremulous, “And now?”

Emma patted her on the shoulder, “Now is complicated.”

“Mmm,” agreed Snow, “that’s one word for it.”

The women put their cups in the sink as they headed back out to the court house. “Emma, I know you have a lot to say but I don’t know if it will make a difference. The council will want to have input.”

Emma answered with angry sarcasm. “Oh, of course you will want the council’s advice. Maybe they can tell you about their plan to deny you the crown if you refused Prince Albert! While they are deciding Regina’s fate maybe they can speak to the poor state of the kingdom’s finances until Regina took over and turned it around.” Emma turned in front of Snow and stopped her forward progress. “Don’t you get it these are the same guys who wanted to ruin your life! These are the people she was protecting you from.” Snow stood, her mouth agape as Emma stormed off.


The courthouse air was full of anticipation when Emma returned. She stood to continue her defense of Regina. “Your Majesty,” Emma nodded to her mother, “members of the council,” Emma nodded to the predictably all male group of advisors. We are here for you to decide on the punishment of Queen Regina,” with air quotes she continued ‘The Evil Queen.’ My reason for speaking to you is not to keep her from being punished. I am up here to make sure she is only punished for the crimes that SHE committed.”

A loud angry voice came from the back. “You mean like the curse she cast! She is evil, no other crime is needed to prove that.”

Snow rose from her seat. “I will remind the gallery that while we may not agree with Princess Emma’s views, she is your princess and it would behove you to act accordingly.” She looked around the room and her expression made it clear she would use the old world rules for disrespect.

Emma’s face was pensive as she began to speak again. “I know you all want to be finished with this. You think convening here and passing a punishment on the evil queen is justice. I want to remind you that there are many more villains in this story, in this town. I want them all called to justice. If Queen Regina is the only one held accountable, if none of the other evil doers in this story are punished, it is not justice it is vengeance and isn't that what got us here in the first place?”

“Mr Gold, The Dark One, Rumplestiltskin when is his trial date? It was he not Regina that designed the curse. Due to his machinations, making sure Regina lived a life of misery, he also created its caster.” It was clear by the sudden murmuring of the crowed that they were unaware of the curse’s origin.

“Rumplestiltskin spent years in the background of Regina’s life guiding her mother, Cora. From the moment of her birth Rumplestiltskin helped Cora lead Regina down a path of misery. Imagine having ‘The Dark One’ choose your punishments. If you think it would amount to torture you would be right. It was at his suggestion Regina’s young love was murdered in front of her 17 year old eyes. It was he and Cora that conspired to kill the queen and replace her with Regina. You can’t charge one and not the other. Rumplestiltskin must be charged with the royal murder of my grandmother!”

The faces of the crowd were covered in expressions of terror. “I can almost feel your fear at the thought of challenging him, you are afraid and he is too strong. I know you are thinking, ‘what is the point of a trial when we know we can’t enforce a sentence?’ The point is accountability and justice. This man, that no one wants to punish, made sure a lovely little girl would be so miserable that when he stepped in to her life with false kindness she would be putty in his hands. Rumplestiltskin convinced Regina that he cared for her.” Emma glared at the silent watchers. “And, just in case you missed the memo, he really didn't give a shit.”

Emma took a deep breath. “If you are going to charge her with the curse you must also charge him. The curse he created brought you here for his purposes.” Emma closed her eyes trying to think of how to continue. “I know that the royal and landed peoples lost their property and power when the curse began. Other then that I don't see why you claim that you suffered. As mayor Regina made sure that no one went hungry or homeless. Everyone had access to health care and education.” Emma paused, “Well I am kinda glad I didn't spend 28 years in fourth grade.”

“Hey” said Snow sharply. “My fourth graders had a great 28 years.” Stress relieving chuckles were heard through out the court house.

Emma continued “Just as she was casting the curse Regina had her doubts. The curse you got was not exactly as created. It was Regina who stopped time. Regina made sure that when it all came apart you would have the time back to be with your families.”

“Now I am going to tell you the true story of Snow White and Regina Mills.

Once upon a time there was a lovely young girl named Regina who was brutally raised by a heartless mother. At the age of 17 she lost her true love and was forced to marry a king. The king had a daughter Snow White, she was a sweet little girl and Regina loved her from the start.

Regina believed that she was unlovable. First her mother and then the king made sure she knew that as the truth. And as Snow White grew older and was less in her care she once again began to feel the aching loneliness that had been her early life. At this time an evil sorcerer showed up to fill the void. With false flattery and pretend love he tricked Regina in to learning his dark ways.

When Snow White turned seventeen she was in danger. Her father was going to force her in to a miserable marriage. Regina panicked wondering how to save her daughter. She had no friends or allies to help her so she killed the king. Then she made a plan to send Snow White to the forest and pretend she ran away. She could hide in the forest until it was safe to come home and take the throne. The huntsman who escorted Snow in to the woods misunderstood what was happening. He told her that she was in danger from the queen and she must run. Thus began a tragedy worthy of Shakespeare. Snow was able to find allies and swore to take her kingdom back. She named her former stepmother ‘The Evil Queen’ and began to fight.

Regina pretended to hunt for her step daughter all the wile protecting her from those who wanted to use her. Just as it was almost over Regina knew Snow needed to stop fighting her and hide. She gave her a sleeping curse and kept Snow’s true love from her until it was safe. Sadly this idea was no better then the last and Regina was never able to get Snow to trust her again.

When Queen Regina heard of Snow Whites wedding something inside her snapped. The Evil Queen that everyone believed her to be was finally born. Having been cast a villain Regina knew that there would be no happy ending for her. She mourned her dream of a husband and children who could love her. From there it was an easy job for Rumplestiltskin to fuel the flames of her anger and devastation and coerce her in to casting his curse.”

“Enough Emma,” Snow said her voice both angry and confused. “You are belittling the suffering we have experienced and making Regina out to be some kind of victim or hero. I lost your childhood. I will never forgive her!”

Emma snapped back angrily. “I forgive her, I was the one who grew up hungry and unloved, and I forgive her. You all,” she looked out at the townspeople, “basically sleep walked through 28 years while you were waiting for me to come wake you. When you woke up you got plumbing and pizza, not a bad deal really.” Emma looked to her parents. “I understand you were cheated out of your little princess. I want to remind you that it was Blue Fairy who convinced you to put me in that tree. It was she and Gepetto who lied and forced me to go alone. It was Rumplestiltskin who wrote me in to the curse as the savior and it was you who gave him my name so he could do it!”

Snow’s hand flew to her chest as if Emma’s words had stabbed her in the heart.

“Be aware that this is not the last trial. Be warned Mr Jefferson, Dr. Whale and those already mentioned I will be pressing charges.” Many in the crowed were shifting uncomfortably in their seats. “If old world crimes can be punished for one they can be for everyone!”

“I am not saying Regina’s plans were good ones. Actually they were kind of foolish but she did her best in a life of misery. I will remind you that she had you all in her clutches ad helpless. She had every chance to hurt you yet instead of causing you pain she gave you milk shakes and Tylenol.

Emma’s face had a look of menace as she scanned the room. “And know this, I never want to hear the words evil queen again. If you choose to speak them in my presence you'll meet the evil princess and I guarantee you will like her even less!” With a flick of her wrist Emma was gone in a swirl of white smoke.”


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