She Promised Me Love

Killian's Ball

Snow smiled at the sight of her son sitting on his father’s throne, as people bowed and curtsied to him, bringing him gifts. Killian smiled and laughed and - as his heritage ensured - charmed every single one of his guests. Then he would look at his mother sometimes and she would smile encouragingly at him. It seemed all so perfect, except for the fact that two members of Killian’s family had yet to make an appearance – David and Emma.

Earlier, Snow had just made her last round to check on things in the kitchen when she’d heard a disturbance outside. Riders had arrived in the courtyard and at first she had thought that it was another request for reinforcements from Robin Hood, but instead it had been the man himself. He and David had gone into David’s study to talk.

Snow had gone upstairs to change but she hadn’t seen her husband or their guest since. And she hadn’t even caught a glimpse of Emma all day, it seemed she was still avoiding her.

Snow was talking to Grumpy and Doc when her husband finally entered the ballroom – in his red dress uniforms when they had talked about him wearing the whites like his son. Snow frowned as she excused herself and went to meet her husband halfway through the cluster of guests. He smiled apologetically at her.

“You’re late. What’s the news with Robin and the fighting in the woods?”

“It’s all over, we won,” David told her.

Snow hugged him. “That’s wonderful news. How’s Robin, I thought I’d seen his arm in a sling?”

“Yes, he was wounded. His arm is broken but it’ll heal. And I talked him into staying for the ball,” David added.

“That’s great then everybody can hear the good news from him. You haven’t by any chance given your white dress uniform to him, have you? Because, if I recall, you wanted to wear them. Not that you don’t look very handsome in your reds, but...” Snow pouted just a little because she really preferred her Prince Charming in white.

“No, I haven’t given them to Robin. I--” but before he could finish the sentence he saw someone enter the ball room out of the corner of his eyes. He turned to Emma entering – in her father’s white dress uniform, altered to her slender form.

“Emma asked me if she could wear them,” he finally said.

Snow looked Emma over. Her mouth opened in wonderment, forming a surprised ‘o.’

David looked proudly at his daughter and then at his wife. “What do you think?”

She slowly regained her composure, but then she smiled. “She looks almost as handsome as her father,” she said and she meant it, too.

Of course, there was no mistaking why Emma had chosen the pants over the dress she and Snow had agreed upon and which had been especially tailored for this occasion over the course of several weeks. And right now Emma was walking towards that very reason – the stunning presence of Regina Mills in a burgundy dress. She was standing with Henry a little to the side, a little out of sight of everybody else.

“Good evening,” Emma said and bowed deeply to the woman who had taken her breath away on first sight. She was still a little short of breath and her voice betrayed some of her nervousness.

Regina smiled and blushed just a little at Emma’s gallant gesture. “Good evening.”

Emma took her hand in hers and blew the gentlest of kisses on it. “You look very beautiful tonight, Regina,” Emma said with a sidelong glance at their son who grinned.

Henry was wearing much the same outfit as she was, only, his pants were black while hers were white to go with the jacket. Both pair of pants, however, were sporting burgundy stripes at their sides. These very same stripes had made Emma late tonight as she had insisted on having the red of her father’s colors changed to the burgundy of Regina’s dress - and the official color of her former coat of arms. She had made a statement with wearing both her parents’ colors and Regina’s. Emma was aware that behind her, people were already wondering at what kind of statement that might be.

“And you look very handsome, savior.” Regina touched the collar of Emma’s jacket.

There might have been a held breath in the room at the intimate gesture, at the evil queen touching the savor, smiling at her and Emma smiling back.

“Henry, you look very handsome tonight,” Emma complimented their son.

He blushed a little. “Thank you. Are you wearing David’s clothes?” he asked with an amused grin.

Emma frowned at him. “The castle’s tailor is good but he couldn’t just conjure up these dress pants out of thin air, so he made some changes on dad’s. Do they look too big on me?” she asked with a note of insecurity in her voice.

“They fit perfectly,” Regina told her and her tone of voice didn’t allow for a discussion.

Henry grinned. It seemed to Emma that he could hardly hold in a jubilant laugh, and she could appreciate the sentiment. She had deliberately come over to Regina and Henry to show that she had taken his concerns to heart, and because she wanted to show both of them that they would always come first with her, from now on.

“I think I’m gonna get myself something to drink. Can I get you two something?” Henry asked but they both declined.

“You’re not getting any alcohol, Henry,” Regina said, before Henry took off. He turned back to her with a pleading look but she only raised an eyebrow at him.

He was about to saunter off pouting when Emma said, “One small cup of wine, but that’s it, kid.”

Henry beamed at her and quickly went away before his mom could protest.

“Well, since you allowed him to drink, you’ll be the one keeping an eye on him tonight, dear,” Regina told Emma.

“He’s gonna be fine, Regina. It’s a party, his first ball. He deserves something special tonight. He’s a good boy,” Emma gave back. She smiled just as brightly as Henry had. She felt Regina’s gaze on her and turned. “What?” Emma asked.

“Nothing,” Regina said and turned her head.

“Is that why you’re blushing?” Emma teased.

“I was just... Henry has your smile,” she then said.

Regina’s honesty surprised Emma, but she smiled proudly. “He has your manners,” she said. “And your sense of fashion. And I’m pretty sure his precociousness comes from your side of the family, too.”

“My son is not precocious, he’s wise beyond his years,” Regina told Emma who laughed.

“And right now he’s drinking beyond his years, excuse me,” Emma said as she saw Henry get a second cup from one of the waiters.

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