Iambicdearie prompted: Sewing a shadow back on is harder than it looks, and it looks pretty hard,
Something father/son-ish with Nealfire that isn’t going to make me want to curl up on the floor and die
Belle should be doing this.
Neal thought that, over and over, as he lifted his papa’s foot and surveyed the material he worked with. The shadow only needed to be attached, Rumpelstiltskin had said, quite clearly: it didn’t need to go through flesh. And good thing, too: after the nightmare with Pan and the dagger, Neal didn’t like the idea of anything cutting through his papa’s flesh, no matter how small or how needful a needle would have been.
Attached to the shoe would do: it was the magic infused in the words said and the intention of the act that would do the actual sewing.
Lucky for Rumpelstiltskin, Neal thought, looking up again at his papa’s profile. He was distracted from Neal’s efforts, talking to Emma about arrangements for Henry’s renewed safety - the third such conversation this hour, in fact, a fact Neal was more glad of than he’d say out-loud - and so did not see the uncertainty on his son’s face. Neal was the only one Rumpelstiltskin would trust with this task, but for all Neal was flattered, it also put a massive burden of responsibility on his decidedly non-magical shoulders.
Belle should be doing this: she at least, apparently, knew how to sew. But no, she was all the way back in Storybrooke, and what papa’s apparently imaginary sinister ghost-Belle couldn’t show up now, when she was actually needed?
Finally, he sighed, and grabbed the ankle of the shadow perched on the log beside his papa. Rumpelstiltskin’s shadow was as impatient as its owner, tapping its foot against the ground soundlessly (and how did a two-dimensional being tap, exactly, much less manage to look condescending and imperious?), as it waited to be sewn back on to its master.
"You alright there, son?" Rumpelstiltskin looked down, at last, at his son. Neal managed a quick smile - they’d settled on ‘son’ as the name Rumpelstiltskin would use for him, because Neal couldn’t stomach ‘Bae’ any longer, and his papa wasn’t ready for ‘Neal’ quite yet - before frowning back at his appointed task, and finally spearing the heel of Rumpelstiltskin’s soft leather boot with his needle. He wove it through the insubstantial silk of the shadow’s foot also, and while Rumpelstiltskin held still and merely watched, the shadow started to reel its head around apprehensively.
"Hold it!" Neal barked, and Snow and Emma immediately grabbed the shadow’s arms, holding it still as hard as they could as Neal worked quickly, hoping the slipshod job would be enough to turn the trick.
Emma was watching, her eyes narrowed. “You stick your tongue out, like Henry does,” she commented, and Neal paused a second to glance up at her, an oddly proud smile on his face, before he continued.
"Yeah, when he’s really focussing his tongue sticks out, I always wondered where that came from."
"Yeah well, genetics are a bitch," Neal returned, "at least he got the looks from your side of the family." Neal looked up at his papa, who was trying to ignore the thrashing of his shadow. "I mean my lot aren’t bad but we’re no Fairest Of Them All."
Snow winked at him, “Winning over the mother-in-law,” she praised, “nice going there, good luck with the other one.”
Charming had taken up sulking, since he’d seen in practice the fact that his daughter knew, in fact, about the birds and the bees. The man had a grandson, Neal thought, as he struggled to get the needle through the thickest part of his papa’s boot, but it didn’t seem to have clicked that biological motherhood plus his daughter plus no test-tubes equalled her having had sex before. Multiple times. Since he’d seen Emma kiss not one but two different men since they’d come to Neverland - up close and personal a few times, Neal and Emma’s reunion had been anything but the awkward, stilted coldness of their meeting in New York this time, after all - he’d taken up sulking.
Snow found it funny, Emma found it exasperating, and Rumpelstiltskin and Neal were for once united in their combination of the two. With a healthy amount of fear on Neal’s part, thrown in for good measure: the man was a dragon-slayer, after all.
he finally finished the first foot, and lifted it into the light of the torch his papa held in one hand to survey his work.
"You missed a spot," Emma commented, dryly. Neal looked up at her, and raised an eyebrow.
"You still not over that?" he complained.
She stuck her tongue out at him. “Bite me.”
"Gladly," Neal grinned, and Snow rolled her eyes.
"Not in front of the parents, please," she begged, "Or I’ll go join Charming under his thundercloud."
Rumpelstiltskin finally looked at her, his urge to needle the princess apparently stronger than his aversion to the weakening struggles of his shadow, “Is my boy not good enough for your daughter, princess?” he asked, mildly, but Neal knew that deceptive tone of voice, and pinched his father’s foot as he lifted it to start sewing, as a reminder to keep it civil.
Belle should really, really be doing this.
Snow scoffed, “It’s the details I don’t need, okay?”
"Yeah I’d have said the same a year ago," Emma muttered. "He was helping you sleep, huh?"
"I was very tired," Snow responded, primly. "Could we be done soon?"
If Belle had been in Snow's shoes in the Miller's Daughter episode, do you think she would have gone through with using the candle on Cora's heart (of course her motivation would be different)? Would Gold have asked her to do it? Or would he rather die than burden Belle with 'murder'? If Belle had done it, what would the aftermath be like for her and rumbelle?
To be honest, I’d like to think Belle could have done it, but I don’t know for sure. I’ve always been a little confused about her motives in not letting Rumple go after Regina in ‘Broken’. I understand that her character is not vengeful, but the explanation I settled on was that she didn’t want to let Rumpelstiltskin release that dark part of him for her sake, rather than a desire to let Regina go free for what she did.
Personally, I think she would have found another way. I KNOW that Rumple wouldn’t have asked her to do it like he did Snow: he values Belle’s goodness and purity above almost anything else, and corrupting her is something he’d never want a hand in. I think she’d more likely have vanished to his book collection and come out with a perfect solution within half an hour.
But if the candle were the only option? I think she’d do it. She would have killed the Yaogui, after all, if it hadn’t turned out to be Philip.
once upon a time meme
nine scenes [8/9]
↳ Selfless, Brave, and True
"What makes you so sure?"
He misses her long hair, he thinks, as she puts her head on his shoulder.
It’s an odd thought, coming out of a moment when finally - finally - he has been able to step up and be the knight-prince Snow deserves. But he never had to assure her of any of this, when her hair was long. He never had to think for one - one awful, and treacherous - moment, that maybe she was right. Maybe Regina was good, once, like Snow: maybe his wife could be lost, losing, vanishing, now to that same darkness.
Her short hair is not what he expects, when he wakes up in the morning. He has reached out so many - too many - times, in the dark of night, to run fingers through it, idly thread and braid in the darkness, and found only strands in places shorter than his own. It is a constant reminder of what they’ve all lost.
And it suits her, it emphasizes her fine-boned face, her wide eyes, her bright smile. She is still every bit as beautiful as before, with her now-lost tumbling curls, but every time it still catches him by surprise.
He almost lost her. Not to George, nor a spell, not to an outside foe. He almost lost her to her own bravery, her own heart, when she followed Emma into the lost world. He almost lost her to something worse, when Cora came back with them, and she sent their world careening into Hell, and Snow with it.
The woman he fell in love with is still here, in his arms, still finally and at last accepting his strength, his comfort, the embrace she’s been needing and rejecting these past days. But she’s different now, short-haired and sad, not the girl he met but a woman he is only now learning. She has, in the years they lost in cursed sleep, become a mother with a child lost to time, even when their daughter stands before them; a woman who has lost her home, her family, her hope, and her innocence.
So yes, he holds her, and he misses her long hair. He misses her smiles that meant no more than ‘let’s have an adventure’ or ‘I love you, and the bedroom’s that way’. He misses her holding his arm, and telling him to do the right thing, always. He misses her belief, more than anything, her faith.
The short hair is a constant reminder of the dragons David will never be able to slay, the looming demons that will stalk his poor, beloved wife to her grave.
But she came back. She let him hold her. She didn’t kill anyone he wouldn’t have slain himself. His princess is gone but in her place stands a burgeoning Queen, and that David can cope with.
It’s not as if his hair isn’t shorter now, too: it’s not as if he’s not growing into a King, hardened and stronger, from the prince he was.
They’re a matched set. He only hopes it’ll be enough for the new demons they’ll face.