My Once Upon A Time fanfic, The Memory Keeper, is set in the mid-season hiatus during season 3. Emma has spent a year with no memory of her former life, and Hook has arrived, determined to get her to remember – and then get her home. He’s pulling out all the stops paying court to the distrustful Ms. Swan, and in this scene, he’s arranged a date aboard the Jolly Roger . . .
“Well, then,” Hook asked, securing the wheel. “What’s it to be? Shall we dine in the Captain’s cabin, or would you prefer to be out under the stars?”
Emma pictured herself cozily ensconced in a private room with this man, feeling the motion of the ship gently rocking them as they sat across the table from each other, with the candlelight playing across that face of his.
“We’ll eat out here,” she said firmly.
“Very well, then.” He gave her a smile that said he knew exactly what she was trying to prevent, and then he stepped over to a chest under the stairs leading to the upper deck, pulling it out and digging around inside. He returned with a couple of blankets, two goblets, and a flask.
“Your table awaits, m’lady,” he said gallantly, as he spread a blanket on the deck. Emma put the pizza down and sat next to it, pulling off her shoes and curling her feet up next to her. It wasn’t easy in that dress. She opened up the pizza box and looked inside.
“Ham and pineapple? How did you guess that I like Hawaiian pizza?”
Hook didn’t say anything. He dropped down next to her and busied himself pouring a healthy portion of rum into the goblets and setting them down next to the pizza. Emma rolled her eyes.
“Henry told you.”
“He’s a good lad.”
“He’s getting a little too involved in my personal life.”
“He loves his mother. Don’t fault him for that, love.”
Emma reached for her drink. “What is this?”
“Rum. It’s that or water.”
She reached behind her for the plastic bag. “We have Coke. That works with rum.” Emma added the coke to her goblet, giving it a quick stir with her index finger, then stuck her finger in her mouth to lick it off. Her eyes caught his just as she was pulling her finger out of her mouth, and the heat in his gaze made her stomach tighten.
Keep your head, Swan. She mentally berated herself. She reached for a slice of pizza, munching it as she formulated her first question.
“So…you’re a ship owner? Is this a tour company or something?”
“Nothing like that. I own the ship for pleasure and transportation.” He took a bite of his pizza.
“And you’re from the U.K.? I mean, the accent sounds British.”
“British. Right.” He stuffed another bite of pizza in his mouth.
“Let me guess…” she mused, taking a drink of her rum and Coke. “You’re a royal. Not one of the famous ones, maybe somebody with a lesser title. You came into your inheritance and you’re hiding out from the paparazzi.”
What the hell was a paparazzi? Hook had no idea.
“You’re very astute,” he said, in a non-committal way. There. That wasn’t an outright lie. She was astute, and it was going to cause trouble if he didn’t find something else for her to talk about.
“And you’re very cryptic,” She replied, raising a brow. “Did you besmirch some girl’s honor, or something?”
“Many times over, as I recall. But not recently.” He leaned back on one elbow. “And what about you? How is it you haven’t found love yet?”
“It’s complicated.” Emma took another drink. “Being alone is easier.”
“No it’s not,” he said. “It’s safer, to be sure. But I wouldn’t say it’s easier, love.” His eyes softened and she couldn’t seem to look away. She felt warm all over.
“Whew,” she exclaimed, setting down her goblet. “I think I’ve had enough of that. That rum is two-hundred proof or something.”
“All part of my master plan,” he explained, laying back and folding his arms behind his head.
“Most definitely. Part two of my diabolical machinations begins when you lay down next to me.”
Emma gave him a smirk. “And why would I do that?”
“Because you’ll miss the show, otherwise. There’s a meteor shower tonight, and now that we’re far enough from the bleed of the city light, you’ll get an amazing view.”
Emma was intrigued. “Really? How do you know that?”
“They had another exhibit at the museum about asteroids and meteors, remember? The attendant was kind enough to remind us that there would be an event this evening, and I knew it would look spectacular from the open water.”
She pushed the pizza box off the blanket, and carefully laid down next to Hook.
“Now we wait.” He reached down next to him, shaking out another blanket and pulling it over them. “We don’t want to get a chill, do we love?”
They didn’t have to wait long. The first few streaks appeared in the sky within minutes, and they were pointing them out to each other with loud exclamations each time. He was right – the view from the open water was amazing. The sky was brilliant and full of stars and streaks of light. And with her head fuzzy from rum and the ship swaying gently beneath her, she didn’t even think of pulling away when he pushed himself up on one elbow and pulled her into his arms . . .