In my Once Upon A Time fanfic, Pandora’s Pain, the town of Storbrooke gets a visitor who’s looking for a certain magical box – one that happens to be in the possession of Mr. Gold – who is, at present banished from the town (this was set after season 4’s mid-point hiatus).
In this scene, Emma and Killian confront Gold at his New York apartment, demanding to know the whereabouts of the box. Emma’s all business, and Killian is all vengeance – but not for long…
“Dammit, Gold!” she shouted as the door flew open.
“I see you still prefer to handle things with your usual finesse,” Rumple said.
“I don’t have time for games,” Emma retorted. “Where’s the damn box?”
“And what’s in it for me?”
“How about you get to keep your miserable life?” A voice said, with a great deal of menace. She turned slowly to face Killian.
“I told you to wait downstairs,” she said.
“And I heard you shouting. You’ll pardon me if I don’t trust your safety to a man who tried to kill us both,” he said darkly.
“You didn’t expect a pirate to keep his word, did you, Miss Swan?” Rumple asked. “Now, if you two will excuse me…” He made a move to shut the door again, but this time, a hook embedded in it, just grazing his fingers at the edge. Rumple pulled his hand away uneasily.
“You’ve no one to hide behind now, Crocodile,” Killian growled.
Emma deliberately stepped between them. “Me.” She said it firmly. “He has me. And you need to back off. Now.”
“He’s not going to help us,” Killian said. “And as long as he’s alive, he’s a threat to us all.”
“As long as he’s alive, we’ve got a better chance of finding that box,” Emma repeated. She turned and looked at Rumple, who was eyeing them both with cool contempt. “Where’s the box?”
“Again, I’m not hearing the part that benefits me,” Rumple reminded her.
“What do you want?” she asked flatly, already half-knowing what he’d ask.
He gave her a condescending smile. “You know the answer to that.”
“It’s not my place to allow you back in,” Emma said. “I don’t even know if we can get you back in.”
“I know how I might get back through the barrier,” Rumple said. “But I’m going to need assurances. You have nothing to fear from me as long as Belle has the dagger. I need to know I’ll be safe from certain…scurvy pirates.”
“You want him to promise not to kill you?” Emma asked.
“No.” Killian said over the top of her. “I won’t do it.”
“Then I don’t see that we have anything more to discuss,” Rumple said, turning to go. “Do be sure and show yourselves out.”
“Wait!” Emma turned back to Killian. “You don’t have to make him any promises,” she said.
“What?” He looked at her as though she were mad.
“You heard me. Promise me. He wouldn’t believe a promise from you, anyway, and I don’t want you making deals with him ever again. So promise me.”
“I can’t do that,” he said. “Emma, he’s dangerous -”
“You think I don’t know that?” She raised her eyebrows, then put a hand gently on his arm. “But you’re done with vengeance. You’re not that man anymore. Show me. Promise me.”
He stared at her, his jaw ticking furiously. Finally his gaze shifted to Rumple, and his voice bit out:
“I’ll not seek to harm him deliberately, but if he ever harms anyone again by word or action, he will be made to pay. Painfully.”
“Every day I share the Earth with you is pain,” Rumple said darkly.
“Great,” Emma said. “Glad we got that settled.” She turned back to Rumple. “I can’t just allow you back in – not without discussing it with Belle first. If she says no, then we’ll do this the hard way and find the box ourselves.”
“I’m sure you can explain to Belle – as you did to me – that it’s for the greater good.”
“It might make her more inclined to extend that invitation if you surrender the location as a goodwill gesture,” Emma pointed out.
“Talk to Belle,” Rumple said. “I’ll wait.”
She rolled her eyes, stepping back into the hallway and pulling the door shut behind her. Killian fell into step next to her, but kept glancing repeatedly over his shoulder, as if expecting an attack from behind. He didn’t relax his guard until they were good and clear of the building and onto the subway. Even then, he still didn’t speak. He was angry – no, more like furious. She knew what that promise had cost him.
She reached over, taking his hand.
He nodded, but he still didn’t speak. His fingers closed around hers, though, and his hand was warm and solid.
“I know how hard that was for you.”
“Do you?” he snapped. At the look on her face, he was immediately remorseful, and his eyes softened. “Emma, the man has threatened not only you, but the people you care for. And he’ll do it again.”
“And we’ll face him again – together,” she said. “I don’t know if he deserves a second chance. That’s not really for me to decide. But I do know he’s taken enough from you. I won’t let him have one bit more.”
“Careful, Swan,” he said, cracking a smile. “You’re beginning to sound possessive.”
“I don’t own you, Killian.”
“Don’t you?” He pulled their hands up to his lips, placing a soft kiss against her knuckles. She had to break away from the heat in his gaze out of sheer self-preservation.
“This is our stop,” she said, as the doors to the train opened. They stepped onto the platform and ascended up to the street, just in front of the hotel. Emma ducked under Killian’s arm as he held the door.
“Always the gentleman,” she smiled.
“Always a pirate,” he reminded her. “I was born a gentleman.”
They stepped into the elevator, and the doors closed, leaving them alone together in the car.
“And which one am I getting tonight?” she asked, throwing him a sideways glance.
His eyes darkened with interest. “Which one do you want?”
She held his gaze boldly. “Guess.”
And a moment later she caught sight of them in the mirrored wall of the elevator car, as his hard body pinned hers, and his mouth captured her startled exclamation.