prompt idea: Emma teaching Regina to swim
Thanks for the prompt :)
TW for panic attack and references to child abuse.
Emma frowns as she lazes in the pool and looks over to where her girlfriend is. She can’t understand it. Regina magicked this pool up for them to enjoy over summer but won’t go anywhere near it.
Henry loves it. He’s in here swimming and showing off his dives every day. Emma too, has always loved the water and now she finally has someone to show off her amazing splash war moves to it’s even better.
Yet Regina, just sits on her lounger as far away as possible. When Emma or Henry do manage to call her nearer to the water, there’s always a hint of fear flickering across her face and an excuse as to why she can’t come in the pool.
Today, Henry is at the arcade with his friends and it’s a gloriously hot lazy Saturday so there’s no excuse not to be in the water. Emma swims over to the edge of the pool, “Hey Regina!”
Regina lifts her head up, shielding her eyes from the sun, “What?”
“Come over here,” Emma calls, “I want to show you something.”
Regina rolls her eyes, “Not one of your ridiculous dives?”
“I think you’re mispronouncing the word ‘cool’” Emma replies watching as Regina sighs before cautiously make her way over to the pool. Once she gets close enough Emma reaches out for her hand. “Help me out?”
Regina nods, “Good, I was starting to wonder how pruny you were going to let yourself g-” her words cut off in a petrified scream as Emma pulls her off the edge and into the water.
She continues to scream as she hits the water, unable to gain purchase or steady herself. She feels herself fall under the water and her eyes open wide as she remembers being beneath the water and what it means. She kicks frantically as she struggles to free herself.
Emma frowns in horror as Regina tumbles beneath the water, her amusement quickly turning to panic as Regina falls and doesn’t emerge. She dives down immediately grabbing her flailing girlfriend and pulling her above the water. The brunette’s breath is laboured and rapid and hot tears roll down her cheeks as Emma holds her above the water.
“It’s okay,” Emma whispers as she swims slowly over towards the steps in the corner, “You’re okay. I’ve got you.” She sits down on the steps, careful to keep Regina’s head above water as her girlfriend shakes and sobs.
“I…I….” Regina gulps, her words drifting off into louder sobs before she simply turns and buries her head against Emma’s shoulder. Emma’s heart aches as she wraps her arms around the trembling woman and holds her close.
“I’m sorry,” Emma whispers, “It was a joke…I didn’t know….I’m so sorry Regina. I’m so sorry. Are you okay?”
Regina sniffs, her tears ebbing slightly, “I will be…I….I can’t swim. My mother,” she shudders as she thinks of her mother’s punishments, varied but constantly cruel, “I spilt juice over one of my new ballgowns once. She sent me for a bath to clean up…when I went up there…she held me underneath….I thought I was going to die, that this was the moment when she was going to go too far…since then…”
Emma nods, “I’m sorry I brought that all back for you…I’ll never do it again. You’re okay. You’re going to be okay. I won’t ever try to trick you into a pool again…do you want to get out?”
Regina shakes her head, “I’m okay…I feel safe…maybe one day you could teach me to swim?”
“You’d trust me to do that?” Emma asks.
Regina nods, resting her head against Emma’s chest, “I always trust you…you’ll keep me safe.”