Celebrating Derby Day with the only southern girl I know. On Emma: Eshakti two piece set, Born boots, Mila Rose Designs headband via Henri Bendel’s via Sasha, Sleek “Mystic” lipstick
On Sasha: Rue 21 dress, H&M hat, Sam Eldelman sandals via Nordstrom, thrifted sunglasses, American Apparel scrunchie
AN: Ugh, this ship is going to kill me. Have some fic.
(Wrote this sometime after 3x06, so its non-canin compliant, Pan’s curse never existed, everything is fluffy kittens and rainbows)
The town seemed to have a slightly unrealistic idea of what a small celebration was.
The entire square was filled with twinkling lights, the townspeople loud and giddy with excitement. This, he supposed, was their way. No matter what trials they were put through, they always found a way out of it, and their light at the end of the tunnel was being together at the end of it.
David glanced around the square, watching his friends laugh, and share stories, and revel in the togetherness days like this brought.
Belle, he saw, was showing a delighted Ariel the trinkets in her purse, the two of them laughing over lipgloss or pens or something similar, all the while the former mermaids glance darting hopefully towards Eric, who was in deep conversation with one of the nuns -fairies - whatever it was they were calling themselves these days.
Happy had started up a jaunty tune near the steps of the gazebo, a few of the dwarves chiming in, and Red, always the first to join the party, had swung some hapless man into a dance with her. He could see Snow, off to his left, grinning as Neal and Tink jumped over each others words in an attempt to tell a long ago story, and even Rumplestiltskin seemed to be enjoying himself, off on his own but eyes on Belle all the same.
Leroy shifted into his line of sight, gloved hands proferring a mug of something David assumed was more than half alcohol, which he waved away. “Suit yourself, brother.” His voice was sympathetic, and it wasn’t until he caught the dwarfs line of sight that he understood why.
Henry stood atop one of the benches lining the edge of the park, brandishing a stick like a sword in front of him, his lips moving as though narrating his swordfight with a particularly vicious, if invisible, foe. Closest to him was Hook, grinning idly at the boy as though nothing in the world could amuse him more, and David watched as he cut into Henry’s narration with a raised brow and a seriously put upon frown, and watched both his grandson and the pirate as their heads turned simultaneoulsy towards Emma.
The look she was sending their way was of complete exasperation, but not entirely without fondness, for either one.
Henry seemed to take that as his cue, and, taking Hook by surprise, jabbed the pirate with his makshift sword before attempting an all-too-familiar spin which would have very easily ended in a few broken bones, if not for Hook, who, seeing the danger, caught hold of Henry’s arm just as he was about to spin his way right off the bench.
Henry righted himself with a bashful grin, sparing an apologetic glance at his mother, who was now sharing a look with Hook that David would have preferred never to see.
“Best of luck to you with that,” Leroy muttered beside him. David grimaced in reply.
“Perhaps, Mr. Mills, we should reenact your father and my tale of heroics from the ground. Much sturdier, I’ve found, and with much less threat of sending your mother to an early grave from fright.” Killian rubbed absently at the spot on his chest that Henry had jabbed at, grinning in spite of himself as the lad hopped off the wooden seat. The Charmings certainly had a way of making their presence in his life known and remembered.
“Hook even let me -.“
"Come now, lad, surely your mother’s heard enough tales of my bravery and cleverness for one night.” It was, perhaps, for the best if Emma didn’t hear about the blade he’d given Henry to use on the Lost Boys and pixies alike, a blade which he had yet to have returned to him by the boy, he’d noted. The interruption didn’t go unnoticed, though, and Killian knew he’d be hearing about it.
“Hey, kid, lets go grab some of that hot chocolate Granny’s handing out.”
“Okay!” Henry’s eyes lit, and Killian watched him tear off towards the gazebo, he himself falling into step beside Emma as she turned to look at him with an expectantly raised brow. “I, uh… may have gifted your son with the use of a blade, during our battle with Pan. Only for his own protection, you understand, in the event that Neal or I…” He let the thought trail off, not wanting to give too much form to that particular ‘if’.
Emma rolled her eyes at him, muttering something no doubt disparaging about the men in her life. It pleased him perhaps a bit too much to be included in that group. His gaze fixed forward to search out their eager leader, only to grin as he saw Henry had been waylaid by the woman in red who’d begun the dancing earlier.
Emma caught his gaze just in time to meet his grin with a stern look of her own. “Oh, no way, buster. I don’t dance.”
“Shame,” he intoned, taking a step forward into her space, finding encouragement when she didn’t deign to back away, something he’d noticed she tended to do only with him. “Because I happen to dance wonderfully. I’d hate to steal your sons rather eager partner.”
All he got was another eyeroll out of that - no real surprise there. It was hard to summon up too much jealousy when the man poking at it had already laid all his cards on the table, and they were all in her favor.
“Fine. One dance. But I’m serious. I don’t dance, like, at all.”
“Luckily for us I’m an excellent lead.”
Somewhere between the walk from the bench and the agreement to their one dance, the dwarves had stopped singing and instead placed some mystical sleek looking boxes inside the gazebo, connected to something that looked vaguely similar to Emma’s infernal phone, and the music was wafting from there, the rather lively song that had enticed Henry coming to a close. Killian ignored the eyes on him as he offered his good hand to Emma.
A few chords of the new song rang out, a softer, slower melody that suited Killians intentions nicely. And he could feel Emma’s eye roll against his shoulder as he gathered her to him in amusement. “Seriously, this is only supposed to happen in chick flicks,” she muttered against his jacket as he began to guide her, and after taking a brief moment to breathe against her hair he backed up just enough to see her face.
“I’ve no idea what you’re speaking of, but I laud them for their excellent timing.”
She half grimaced at him, following his lead much better than he’d anticipated she would. But then, they’d always worked well together. “It’s a… type of movie. You’d love them. Sap that you are.”
She’d meant it as a jibe, but Killian was self-aware enough to know what, who he was, and his earnestness was the only reason he was here, in the embrace of this wonderful, dreadfully amazing woman.
“As I recall, you seem to enjoy the romantic in me.” She didn’t respond with words, instead smiling softly at him as he pressed his advantage, his arm tucking neatly lower onto her back as she stumbled a bit into his space.
The dance was silly - stupid, hardly even a dance at all, but the way they moved together, like they were two parts of a whole, like Emma didn’t even have to think about it. Well. Maybe Emma shuffled closer into him on the guise of a misstep, maybe her hand shuffled lower on his back, underneath his stupidly attractive coat, and maybe, just maybe, she did find all his wooing was working on her, like a charm.
But God, he was just so straightforward, always painfully honest with her, always… there. It’d been a month since Neverland. A month, with her constantly shooting him down, constantly telling him she was Not Ready.
Hell, they hadn’t even kissed, again, but he was still here, still grinning at her and complimenting her and arguing with her and bonding. with. her. son.
She’d given him no indication that he might have a chance except not sending him away.
But then, he’d always known her well enough to know what her actions meant. Seeking him out for a drink after a supremely awful family dinner with Neal, skirt and heels and all (“Fancy meeting you here, love.” “Look, you’ll just invite yourself along anyway, save yourself the trouble and get in.”), always asking his opinion on this and that, and (“I’m going to just chop it all off, just gets in the way anyway.” “Do what you will, sweetheart, but I’d miss those golden curls.”) him, always just… affirming her, standing by her, never judging her.
It was like he’d studied some sort of Emma Swan: Guide to Easing Her Mind While Still Keeping Her On Her Toes.
“Emma, love?” Emma blinked up at Killian, realizing they’d stopped moving, and the song was changing, the couples shuffling away again, Henry dragging an uneasy Regina toward the gazebo now, and Emma smiled up at Killian.
“Maybe one more dance.”
His grin was wide and infectious, and even his ridiculous low bow made her laugh. “As you wish, milady.”
She bit back a grin as he swung her wildly into the dance, hoping and praying that no one EVER showed him that damn movie and made him even more pleased with his progress towards winning her heart.