I joined the PTA when my son started at a new school and their first event was a murder mystery dinner. While I was in line at the buffet, the person in front of me collapsed. Being trained in first aid, I’m ready to give him the kiss of life.
Well, it’s up to me to open the season for @csjanuaryjoy !!!! I had another prompt picked, but I couldn’t find inspiration and @blessed-but-distressedshared this idea with me and I knew I had to write it! Thank you so much to @sambethe for the beta duties and all the love in the world to @katie-dub who created all of this!
Emma Swan hated the idea, but she knew Mary Margaret was right. Frankly, at this point she’d take any advice on how to adapt to small town life, even if said advice came in a two page email filled with rules, tips, best practices, and a picture of a hand drawn diagram.
So, as the newest resident of Storybrooke, Maine, she put on her big girl pants and dared to go where she had never gone before - she signed up for the school PTA. Granted, it might seem like too little, too late, with Henry almost being out of middle school. He’d be in high school in two years, begging his mother not to get involved, but for now, Emma was going to take a deep breath and do it.
Christina Perri releases her music video at the same time OUAT episode would normally air. The song is inspired by Captain Swan and the video gave us Colin in a way we hadn’t seen before … and inspired lots of CS AU gifsets!
My submission for @csjanuaryjoy This song always reminds me of captain swan and when it came on shuffle while I was trying to think of what to do for this I knew it was a sign. Thank you @lenfaz for all the work you’ve done putting this event together!! I was so excited to be able to participate in this wonderful project this year and had a lot of fun making this
It’s going to take hours. Days. The rest of her goddamn life. Probably not. That last one is a bit dramatic.
But, honestly, it’s going to take a ton of time to refold all those shirts and this guy just keeps wandering around the store with, seemingly, no purpose and Emma has no customer service skills at all. Mary Margaret would know what to do. Mary Margaret is not there.
It’s just Emma and the t-shirt destroyer. And his goddamn, stupid leather jacket.
Rating: Teen’ish? I mean they make out so…spoiler, I guess. Word Count: Way too many. But really like 9K and change AN: Because @distant-rose is a horrible peer pressure’er I signed up to do @csjanuaryjoy this year and this is my story! It has lots of adjectives and makeouts. The prompt I picked was “I work at a department store and if you take out and unfold a shirt and then leave it one more time I’m going to stuff it down your throat” AU” and this is not quite that, but it’s pretty close. A huge THANK YOU to @katie-dub and @lenfaz for organizing the event this year and being just fantastic humans in general. Also on Ao3 if that’s how you roll.
She knows she’s staring.
She knows he knows she’s staring.
It’s just that she can’t seem to stop. And if he unfolds another one of the shirts on that one table in the corner of the store, she’s absolutely going to kill him.
That is probably not the best way to start the year, but Emma is, well, she’s Emma and she’s frustrated because she’s by herself in the store three days after New Year’s and this guy has been wandering around for, at least, forty-five minutes with what only appears to be the very annoying goal of unfolding every single shirt in the store.
Summary: Tweaked from the prompt “I was burning scented candles and fell asleep. You’re my neighbour who bashed the door down when my smoke alarm went off.”
Rating: T+ for some swears and sexual innuendos.
A/N: Sorry for squeezing this in right after the wire of Day 9 but work is a bitch. Thanks @csjanuaryjoy, and thus @lenfaz and @katie-dub for this project. I loved writing this and I hope it gives someone a little light and warmth on a cold January night (in Ohio).
Emma has found, year after year, that her least favorite month is January. There’s this lull, after the holidays are over, where the cold intensifies, the weather gets worse, and there are no brightly colored lights to make it tolerable. That’s the truth of today, she thinks, as the wind picks up and rattles the screens in her windows. With emphasis, she pulls her hat lower, wraps her scarf tighter, and takes her time pulling on her warmest gloves.
While her favorite neighbor is out there cleaning off her car and starting it for her, she knows she’ll be lucky if the heater in her old, beloved Volkswagen Beetle will work before she gets to the sheriff station. She wouldn’t have left the house at all today, but it works since she also has to stop at the grocery store and maybe the movie rental place before she gets home.
She’s just coming down the stairs when the outside door is nudged open, with Killian bracing himself, presumably to catch his breath or his bearings coming in from the blizzard conditions outside to the warm foyer of the apartment complex. (Her heart skips a beat, just because it’s Killian, and why the hell wouldn’t she have fallen for the charismatic man that’s become her friend and confidant?)
The novels mentioned within are real, and available for your kindle or other device. Enjoy.
Emma doesn’t get the appeal of romance novels. If only the library assistant was so easy to dismiss.
When her editor had called her to a private meeting she’d had many things in mind - good, bad, frankly creepy - but this, this is not at all what she’d anticipated.
“Are you serious? No. No way. I’m not putting my name to this!”
Sidney smiles, wide and brittle, and Emma clenches her fists under the diner table.
“Don’t be so hasty,” he says. “It’s fresh, different -“
She stares at him, horrified, and jabs her finger at the article abstract he’s presented to her.
“Dirty Books? What, is it 2008?”
The smile turns leery.
“Women’s sexual empowerment has no best before date, Emma.”
“Yeah.” Emma shakes her head and pushes the file back toward him. “Not interested in what you think of women’s sexual anything, Sidney.”
Sidney’s smile drops, and he taps his fingers against the front page of this week’s paper. He’d brought it with him to this lunchtime “chat”, turned it so that the name on the byline lay in her line of sight.
Not her name.
She wishes she could say she’d not fallen for his suave charm and easy way with words as easily as her editor had, but that would be a lie.
The truth is so much more awkward.
Three years at this stupid small town paper, and he comes along and just -
He doesn’t deserve the byline.
“It could be an interesting article.” Sidney tries for wheedling, all but batting his lashes at her. “In the right hands.”
(She sure as hell knows those hands aren’t Walsh’s.)
Emma crosses her arms and scowls down at the way Sidney almost caresses Walsh’s name, the print smudging with each pass.
Emma groans, pushing her weight down into her palms and leaning over the library counter.
“Erotic novels. Romances. Those things with the bad artwork that come in large print. Fabio. Come on Belle, you know what I mean. I just need a few statistics.”
Belle blinks her large, innocent brown eyes.
Emma briefly considers dragging her over the counter and throttling her.
“I’m researching an article,” she grits out, “about the rising popularity of erotica in fiction. So I need statistics. About. The rising. Popularity.”
Belle looks unconvinced.
“I thought you were writing the gardening column while Leroy was on leave?”
“Please,” Emma pleads, “don’t bring up Leroy when I’m asking you about porn. This is awkward enough as it is.”
“I don’t really think I can be of any help, I’m sorry.”
“Oh come on,” Emma cries. “You can’t tell me nobody takes those things out! Have you met Ruby?”
Belle blushes even harder until it’s difficult to differentiate between her cheeks and her cherry red blazer.
“I don’t think Ruby needs the help,” she mumbles. “And anyway that’s classified information.”
“Belle,” says Emma, drawing her words out in an effort to regain her patience, “You run a library. You are not the CIA.”
Belle lifts her chin. It makes her look about as threatening as one of those little teacup dogs Emma’s sure the Mayor’s sister carts about in her handbag, and she almost scoffs.
Then Belle says the words that fill Emma with a nauseating terror greater than anything the USA government could ever produce.
“I can’t help you. But I know a man who can.”
It had to be Jones.
Jones with his swagger and his leather and his stupid floppy hair and even stupider smirk. He can’t even sit properly, draping himself over the chair opposite hers and grinning like the Cheshire Cat when she scowls and shoves his feet off the table.
“So,” he says, and he has a stupid voice too. “I hear you need my help.”
He pops the ‘p’, let’s his tongue peek from the corner of his mouth and honestly she’d rather be fired. Starvation is preferable to watching the way his eyebrow arcs as he adds:
“In matters of the heart. Or is it loins?”
She would welcome death. Welcome it.
“You tell me,” she snaps back. “Belle seems to think you’re a fountain of smutty book knowledge. Is that how you get your kicks these days?”
“I doubt it’s my kicks you’re interested in,” he says mildly. “What exactly does Glass want from you?”
“That’s a loaded question - and not that sort of load before you start.”
He snorts with laughter, and for a moment he once again looks like the nerdy kid with the ponytail that sat opposite her in Math. Back when she was the pale little foster kid with a chip on her shoulder and bruises on her shins. Back before the guyliner and the tight pants. Back when mooning over him from afar had been far less dangerous.
He grins and she catches a glimpse of his dimple, long since disguised by the designer stubble, and her stomach churns unpleasantly.
Maybe not much less dangerous.
“Well, love,” he says. “Let’s get cracking.”
Storybrooke library contains a lot of smut. Jones drops pile upon pile of garishly illustrated books upon her table, each one apparently sorted into themes.
“Paranormal romance,” he says with a wink as she picks up one about shape shifting squirrels, holding it at arms length between finger and thumb. “Very popular.”
“Oh Swan.” He winks. “I never kid about matters of seduction, you know this.”
She bites her lip and glares at the ridiculous cover art. She can feel the way he’s smirking without even having to look, anyway.
“Got anything more seductive and less… furry?”
“Don’t recall you complaining about a bit of fuzz before,” he says gamely, but there’s an edge to his voice that wasn’t there before. Emma hums noncommittally, and picks up another book.
“Manaconda,” she says dryly. “Points for confidence.”
“Shall I leave you to it then?” asks Jones. “Bit of privacy?”
“Please,” Emma snorts, dropping Manaconda back onto the pile. “Just listen to this stuff, here - “ She picks up another book from a pile featuring men with muscular structures unknown in nature and flicks through it. “What the hell are sugarwalls and why are they dripping? Who writes this stuff?”
Jones sighs, and pulls out the chair opposite to her.
“Now now, Swan. You’re looking at it all wrong.”
“Oh,” she raises an eyebrow as he peruses the piles carefully before selecting a book and sitting down. “and how should I be looking at it?”
“These books aren’t supposed to be realistic, they’re supposed to be fantasies.”
“About were squirrels?”
“Don’t kink shame, Swan. Listen.”
He opens his book and clears his throat. Emma slumps down in her chair, closing her eyes in the sheer desperate hope that she might become one with the wood.
“The Duke pulled her toward him, her heart hammered in her chest from the sheer impropriety of such closeness as he ran his hand over the silk of her skirts. ‘Miss Edwards, you are the most exquisite creature I have seen these ten years or more, I can wait no longer I must -’”
“Don’t tell me,” Emma mutters. “There’s a whole subsection devoted to fingering in carriages.”
“It’s not about the fingering,” Jones says severely, snapping the book shut. “It’s about the good girl taming the bad boy. It’s an extremely popular trope, Swan.”
“So? Aren’t you supposed to be writing an article about why women have rediscovered the romance novel?”
“Why do you know so much about these things anyway?” Emma tilts her head and narrows her eyes. “Reading options limited at sea?”
Jones actually blushes.
“I wasn’t always the dashing rapscallion I am now, Swan, as you may remember.”
Oh, she remembers. She remembers that it wasn’t a carriage, but rather her foster brother’s battered old truck, and that her skirts weren’t made of silk but slid upward all the same beneath his nervous hands. She’d kissed him then, tightened her fingers in his hair and nodded her permission as he sought to make her breath catch and her blood run hot.
She remembers the way his body had felt beneath her as she took control, how he’d smiled and she’d laughed at him, dropping a kiss against his nose because you look like Christmas has come early, Jones.
Not Christmas I’m worried about, he’d said, and then she’d kissed him again and he hadn’t laughed after that.
“Yeah,” she says now, and neither can quite meet the other’s eyes. “Well.”
She picks up the book he’d chosen and concentrates on the first page until she hears him sigh and shift his chair.
“I’ll leave you to it,” he says lowly.
She says nothing, just waits for the letters to blur.
The library closes at five. By five fifteen she is lying face down on Mary Margaret’s couch making pathetic moaning sounds in reply to her friend’s questions and beckoning weakly for the rum bottle.
By five thirty Ruby has arrived, called forth by the Storybrooke Drama Smoke Signal and bearing a second bottle of the good stuff from her grandmother’s stores.
It’s six before she stops laughing.
“Is there more to this than you’re letting on?” asks Mary Margaret as Ruby wipes tears from her cheeks. “I mean it’s a little odd, but - ”
“Oh come on,” sniggers Ruby. “This has nothing to do with the reading material, this is all about the other thing.”
“I don’t know what you mean,” Emma grumbles into the sofa cushion.
“This thing between you and Jones.”
She turns her head to scowl at Ruby.
“There is no thing between me and Jones.”
“Sure. I only watch you mooning over each other every Thursday morning in the diner. And Wednesday. And like every other day since he came home. And hey didn’t you take him to prom?”
“He had that - “ Mary Margaret gestures to her hair.
“Yeah! With the bow!” Ruby nods, delighted. “But sure, what do I know. You’re not interested. You’re clearly mad, but uninterested.”
“Please stop,” Emma groans. “I will pay you to stop.”
“I don’t get it, I mean he was cute then - but now.” Ruby sucks a breath inbetween her teeth and tuts loudly.
“This has nothing to do with sex, okay. Nothing. Believe me.”
“Books not inspired you?”
“But it does have something to do with Killian, doesn’t it?” Mary Margaret’s tone is gentle, but somehow that just makes it harder to deny.
“You can tell us Emma,” she continues, “We can tell. You’ve gone sort of puce.”
“Fifty shades of puce,” adds Ruby gleefully. “What, have you been checked out by the librarian?”
Emma sits up and rests her face in her hands.
“Shut up,” she pleads.
“Oh my god you have!”
“Really. Shut up.”
“Was it any good? I bet it was good, he looks like he’d be - or not oh my god was he terrible? Is that why you never talked about it?” Ruby practically clambers into Emma’s lap, shaking her shoulders as though she can somehow bodily remove the information.
“I didn’t talk about it because it’s none of anybody’s business!” Emma snaps. Ruby at least has the grace to settle herself onto the sofa beside her. Mary Margaret comes to sit on Emma’s other side and strokes her hair gently.
“Emma, honey. This is Storybrooke. Everything is everybody’s business.”
“He didn’t walk on you did he?” asks Ruby, sitting up sharply.
“Don’t be stupid, look at her of course he didn’t!” hisses Mary Margaret before turning to Emma with wide eyes. “Did he?”
Emma lifts her head and scrubs at her hot cheeks.
“No. No, he - I walked out on him.”
It hadn’t been that simple - these things never are - but she’d been the one to close that particular door. Literally and figuratively. She’d been the one to leave that night and never look back, not even when he was standing on Ruth’s porch, pleading with David to let him in.
Let me talk to her, mate. Please. I don’t know what happened. Tell her I’m sorry okay? Tell her I’m sorry.
He’d joined the Navy and followed his older brother within weeks of graduation. He hadn’t called her before he left. She hadn’t cared.
She hadn’t really expected him to come back. Nobody else ever did. But the Jones was always full of surprises.
“But look at him!” cries Ruby, aghast. “He’s -”
“Yeah. That’s what I’ve been doing all day or did you miss that part? It was years ago, okay? Let it go.”
“Emma! You banged Jones when he had the ponytail?”
Mary Margaret sighs and tugs Emma’s head down to rest on her shoulder.
“Oh, Emma. You like him. You always have. It’s okay you know.”
“I do not,” Emma says into Mary Margaret’s cardigan. “He’s ridiculous. He wears eyeliner.”
“You do like him!” crows Ruby. “Oh this is fantastic!”
“How so?” Emma grimaces. “Even if I did like him, which I don’t, third base in the back of David’s truck ten years ago is ancient history.”
“David’s truck?” Mary Margaret sounds faintly alarmed. “Does he know?”
Emma looks up at her and wrinkles her nose. “Is Jones walking?”
“Okay,” says Ruby, bouncing slightly in her seat. “So you messed about years ago, and you freaked out -”
“I didn’t -”
“You freaked out, and then he joined the Navy and left and you’ve been pining all these years -”
“I don’t pine!”
“And now he’s back and the two of you are looking longingly at each other over Granny’s meatloaf and - oh my God do you know what this is?”
“An elaborate fantasy of your own making?”
“It’s a romance novel! Emma, you’re living in a Harlequin right now!”
Emma burrows her nose harder into Mary Margaret’s woolly shoulder and groans.
“Fine.” she manages. “Fine. Let’s say I did have… an interest in Jones. I can’t do anything about it now. Too much water under the bridge.”
“I wouldn’t say that,” says Ruby, a slow, wolfish grin dawning on her face. “I have an idea.”
She sits at the same table the next day, nervously crossing and uncrossing her legs and tapping her pen against the stack of books in front of her. Belle had looked rather surprised when Emma had asked her to send Jones her way, but then her mouth had formed a little knowing smirk and Emma hadn’t really been able to look her in the eye anymore.
It’s a strange feeling to realise everyone else knows something about you you’ve hidden for a decade or more.
(Jones had always said she had a terrible poker face.)
“Belle said you wanted me?”
She blinks up at him, half expecting to see that same knowing little smirk on his face, but instead he just looks slightly awkward standing between the stacks in his too-tight jeans and leather jacket, the steel prosthetic that is his souvenir from Iraq heald close to his side.
The boy with the ponytail and the dimple and the bright eyes playing dress up.
She knows how he feels.
“Yeah,” she says. “I do.”
She stands. Takes a deep breath.
“Ruby wanted me to read you a story.”
Jones lifts his brow. “Really.”
“On any particular theme?”
“I think,” Emma steps forward, and to her relief he doesn’t move away. “It was one of those long lost lover tropes. Pining, Regret.”
“Fingering in carriages?”
She’s in his space now, and he’s swaying slightly toward her. She tilts her head up and concentrates on the way his jaw tightens as she leans in.
“Second chances,” she murmurs. “Sound good?”
He sighs, and she feels it right down her spine, her toes curling as she rises onto them.
“Sounds perfect,” he says, breath against her lips. “And what do you think?”
The official poster for the second half of Season 5 is revealed and the fandom explodes! Captain Swan fans are thrilled to see that the promotion for 5B centers around Emma’s journey to find Hook and save him!
This is a few days late, but guys, can I say a massive thank you to everyone who took part in CS January Joy?! So many authors stepped up to create amazing fics to inject a bit of happiness into what can be a very dreary month. And of course thank you to everyone who read, liked, reblogged, commented and reviewed those stories too!
Here’s all the fics from the past month for your reading pleasure!
the arrival of a new person into storybrooke throws the town for a loop. it’d throw killian for a loop, too, if he didn’t have this stupid headache latched onto him. if only magic existed in this world. (oh, the things he doesn’t know.)
my late, super late day addition to the @csjanuaryjoy! i’m so so glad to be able to participate in this again, because it’s one of the best ways to start off the year! special thanks to @lenfaz for taking the helm of planning this year, and a special thanks to two of my lovely squad members @outlaw-queen and @demisexualemmaswan for being my sounding boards and for the face clutches that made me smile! now, i leave you with this. please, enjoy!
It starts, as many things do, with magic—the magic between two souls finding one another, trying against all odds to stay together, and the magic of a dark course threatening to pull them apart.
“Say your goodbyes,” was all that was whispered around the palace.
So the princess did, despite the hope that lived within her parents—and all those that sat around the table—that all would be won and goodbyes wouldn’t be necessary.
She snuck out of the castle amidst the dead of night and snuck aboard a ship docked in their town filled with pirates following a captain considered to be the biggest scourge of all the seas.
Killian Jones was made for sailing. It’s been a vital thread to the very fabric of his makeup since he came into the world. Emma, on the other hand, was clearly not made for sailing.
(Here’s my little fic for today’s posting for @csjanuaryjoy! Would like to thank my friend Jen for helping me out of a writer’s block spot by giving me a prompt that kicked this thing into gear, and for being my second eyes on the fic when it was done! The title for the fic comes from A Sea Scout Chantey by James A. Wilder. And a big shout out to @lenfaz for helping make sure January Joy lived on into 2018!)
It was a well-known fact that Killian Jones was an exceptionally skilled sailor. He was a pirate, after all - the Captain Hook himself. Sailing came as naturally to him as breathing. She’d seen glimpses of his prowess during their time in Neverland, and of course he’d outrun a Dark Curse with just himself aboard his ship, but it was only after they were married that Emma really took note of just how good he actually was. It was skill honed by three lifetimes of commitment to the life. More than that, it was a passion that nestled itself deep inside his very make up. Killian Jones was born to be out on the water and he cherished that almost as much as she knew he cherished the life they were building together.
Which made the fact that Emma Swan clearly wasn’t even remotely made for the sea all that more frustrating. Because she loved Killian deeper than she’d ever loved anyone, outside of her son, and she loved his passion and prowess. And yet, no matter how hard she tried to translate that love into something resembling any sort of skill on the water, she fell short every damn time.
Emma daydreams of names as she gets ready, parting her hair just so and checking her teeth for lipstick.
It’s the day of her wedding, and she still hasn’t decided how to handle the whole “last name” situation. She doesn’t mind the tradition of taking her husband’s last name, archaic as it feels, but she’d chosen Swan herself. It feels a bit strange to just let it go so easily.
But then, she’d chosen Swan when she was a lost little ugly duckling, hoping to grow into the beautiful, graceful creature whose name she’d chosen as her own. Now, things are different.