"Wish You Were Here" is the 121st episode of Once Upon a Time.
Upon learning that our heroes possess a weapon capable of defeating her, the Evil Queen steals Aladdin's magic lamp from Jasmine and makes a wish that could sideline the savior forever. David, unwilling to wake Snow while their daughter is missing, works with Henry and Hook to hold the Queen at bay in Storybrooke. Meanwhile, Gold and Belle face a surprising danger to their newborn son, and Regina goes on a rogue rescue mission.
Previously on Once Upon a Time...
The genie lamp is rubbed by Jasmine but only a pair of cuffs poof out, leading the princess to fret that, without a genie, she can't use a wish to get back to Agrabah. However, Aladdin thinks that she will, proceeding to place the cuffs on himself and become the new genie of the lamp. ("Changelings") In the backroom of Gold's shop, Emma and Hook discover the sword - with a red jewel embedded in the hilt - from the former's visions. ("Changelings") We once again see Emma, in the future, being stabbed by the same sword wielded by an unknown figure in a hood. ("The Savior") Hook points out that it's the sword that kills her, but Emma believes that now that they have it then maybe they can finally find out who's responsible and how to stop them. ("Changelings")
The Evil Queen pays a visit to Robin's grave.
The sword from Emma's vision remains in her possession as, in the present, she, Regina and Hook are seen making their way through the town cemetery at night. The latter asks the Mayor if she really thinks there might be something in her vault which can destroy the weapon, but she replies that they don't want to destroy it - they want to understand it. Hook doesn't follow, exclaiming that it's fated to kill his love, but said love states that the hooded figure who uses it is fated to kill her, meaning they have to figure out who that is. "And then we can worry about destroying things," Regina adds as the three of them continue to trek; however, they all soon find themselves stopping dead in their tracks at the sight of something shocking, with the pirate even espousing one of his usual "bloody hell"s. Indeed, right now, the Evil Queen is kneeling down before the grave of Robin Hood, which is emblazoned with a lion, and an offended Regina screams for her other half to get away from him. The Queen turns in a state of mild surprise as Regina comes running, then slowly getting to her feet as she assures that the heroes have no need to worry, for she's not there to desecrate Robin's final resting place. She loved him too, after all.
The heroes are successfully riled up.
An evil smirk works its way across her face as she decides to put emphasis on the word "loved" - past tense - because she believes that losing Robin Hood was the best thing that ever happened to them. It pushed Regina to liberate her; to free her from the prison of her self-loathing; "To make me the best version of us." This only makes Regina angrier, and the savior begs her friend not to let the Queen get to her. It's too late for that though, as Regina states herself, and then she summons a ball of fire into her palm. The Queen smirks and cackles some more, asking Regina what exactly she plans on doing, such as throwing a fireball at herself. She then uses her magic to extinguish the flame, reminding the Mayor that the only way to hurt her is to hurt herself, which is why her friends won't be able to stop her. "See? Love is weakness." With Regina sufficiently subdued, the Queen decides to move on to Emma, requesting that she say "hi" to sleeping beauty. She then asks if it's in fact sleeping daddy, a reference to the two-say sleeping curse she enacted on her mortal enemies, and this talk of Emma's parents really gets to her.
Emma realizes she may have a way to kill the Queen once and for all.
More enraged than ever and in spite of Hook's protest, the savior takes the sword and goes for the Queen, even managing to slice her cheek with the blade. The malevolent monarch is left with a nasty gash on her face, at which point Emma realizes what she's done and turns to Regina in worry, needing to know if she's okay. However, as she feels her own cheek, Regina is surprised to report that she's fine, for harming the Queen with the sword seems to have had no effect on her. The Queen is equally surprised as she touches her wound and sees blood, then attempting to heal it with her magic. The purple glow is ineffective though - it seems scars from this sword don't heal - and so Emma then attempts to use the weapon to run the villainess through once and for all. In the nick of time, the Queen is able to poof away in one of her regular flurries of purple smoke, leaving Emma standing there with the sword in tow and staring down at the blade. She then revels in an out-loud realization: "We can kill her."
ONCE UPON A TIME
Gold slaps his wounded former ally with a tracking bracelet.
Across town, the Queen re-materializes in another flurry of smoke, still clutching her wounded cheek following her brief confrontation with Emma. She then leans against the car she's appeared in front of, needing a moment to ponder over the implications of everything, only to end up startled by the sudden appearance of Mr. Gold. He looms over her, for the car she's sitting on is in fact his, and then he asks if she was thinking of going for a drive. The Queen replies that she's in no mood and, upon taking a moment to inspect her face, the Dark One comments that it appears as though the savior's found a weapon. Normally he'd be upset that someone stole from him but, in this case, he thinks he'll let Miss Swan's pilfering slide, and he can focus on finding his son. "And you," he steps closer, "can prepare to die." With that, he slaps something on her wrist, managing to catch her off-guard. It glows briefly with magic and he states that now, no matter where she goes, he can find her. When he takes a step back, we see that the Queen has just been tagged with one of the same golden bracelets that currently adorns Belle's wrist; she tries to take it off but can't, with Rumple adding that what the Queen did to him - and to Belle - was unforgivable. So if, at the end of the day, the savior has yet to dispatch of her... she can rest assured that, after he finds his son, he will gladly finish the job. Threat made and understood, he then poofs away in his own preferred shade of red, leaving the Queen reeling as she stares down at her cuffed wrist.
Henry wants for his mother to refrain from battle.
"So it can hurt the Queen without hurting Regina," David repeats back at the loft, having just received the rundown of events, while his daughter tends to a sleeping Snow. She then looks up at her father, and to Regina, and states that the Evil Queen needs to die, and Regina nods in agreement. David's cell phone then starts to ring and he leaves the other heroes to go answer it, giving Hook a moment to approach his girlfriend and ask if she's alright. She responds that, in this case, the cliche is true: "I was... born for this." And Hook accept that. Henry, however, calls out for his mother, begging her not to do it. Emma shoots a look to Hook and Regina, signifying that she and her son need a moment alone, and so they join David in the other room while the savior, sword still in tow, gets up to approach Henry, telling him that she has the ability to stop the Queen. With the sword, she can save all of them, but Henry points out that that sword is what kills her, then asking how she knows that this isn't how she dies - by facing her. "What if she's the figure under the hood from your vision?" However, Emma points out in turn that she can't miss out on every battle because she thinks it might be her last, for she's the savior.
Regina is kept out of the action, for now.
Henry exclaims that she's also his mom, before storming off, while Emma looks down at her hand beginning to shake. As per usual, when the tremors start, we receive flashes of the battle Emma is fated to be in. Her brandishing a sword against a mystery assailant on Main Street, at some point in the future which seems ever-nearer. The battle doesn't exactly go well, but Emma tries her best to ignore this as she clenches her fist in an attempt to force the visions to stop. It works, and then she receives a much-needed distraction from David as he comes to inform her that that was Leroy on the phone and the Evil Queen's been spotted in Main Street. While Henry heads upstairs, David and Hook head out the door, with Regina eager to follow along with Emma. However, Emma stops the Mayor and tells her that she can't, for the only way for her to hurt the Queen is to hurt herself and she can't let her do that. "I've got this," she assures, "You just stay here with Henry." This appears difficult for the Mayor to accept, but eventually she's able to simply wish her friend good luck in defeating her evil half, and Emma nods before finally heading out the door too.
The Queen takes a hostage.
Emma leads Hook and David down Main Street and past the clock tower, her grip never wavering on the apparently magical sword. She looks down at it again as she readies herself to do battle with the Queen, only the Queen doesn't seem to actually be there, and the heroes soon grow distracted by someone crying, "Help me!" over in Granny's Diner. They rush to this person's aid, hightailing it into the diner, and soon discover that the damsel in distress is none other than Jasmine, who's been bound to a chair. Emma calls out her name and begins to approach, wanting to save her, but the Queen soon emerges from the backroom with a certain something in tow, warding the savior off with a wag of her finger and an "ah-ah". "This is about me. It's always about me!" the Queen roars as she parks herself next to her hostage, that certain something in her hand in fact being the genie lamp that Aladdin stole for his princess. Emma tells the Queen that she's damn right as she prepares to wield the sword against her, but the Queen is quick to extend her arm and use her magic to begin choking Jasmine, assuring the blonde that she can snap her neck before she gets a step closer.
Meet the new genie of the lamp.
This makes Emma hesitant, and so she draws herself back a bit, meaning the Queen relinquishes her grip and allows her poor victim to breathe again. While Jasmine catches her breath, her captor begins to rub the side of the lamp, causing orange smoke to fire from the spout. From this orange smoke, Aladdin himself takes shape, now decked out in appropriate genie attire as his binds remain firmly on his wrists. He looks to Jasmine and the Queen in shock at the positions they're both in, while Hook exclaims, "What the devil?!" The Queen then takes it upon herself to inform the pirate that it's not the devil, but rather, her genie, and Aladdin finds himself apologizing to the heroes. "I believe I have three wishes," the Queen goes on, stepping out in front of the kidnapped princess and the magical slave and pacing up and down to intimidate the enemies that stand before her. Aladdin encourages her to go ahead and wish, for they always come with a price, but the Queen is well-aware of this, which is why she's not going to wish for something for herself. Instead, she's going to give Emma something. Something she's always wanted. Something she confided about to Aladdin (see "Dark Waters").
Emma's wish is granted, and thus she's taken off of the chess board.
Emma seems shocked that the Queen heard them, only for her to exclaim, "Don't you know by now? I hear everything." This makes her very worried, with the Queen proceeding to recount that she wished she wasn't the savior. As such, that's exactly what she's going to get. Her loved ones look just as taken aback; the Queen, though, prepares to voice her first wish. "Genie of Agrabah," she commands, to Aladdin's dismay, "I wish that Emma Swan's wish to have never been he savior... be granted." A moment goes by as the genie holds off the inevitable for as long as he can, and Emma uses this time to yell out in defiance and run at the Queen with the sword in tow. Her loved ones call out too, but the Queen just smiles, for Aladdin is finally compelled to outstretch his arm and make it so that the blonde just... vanishes. Sword and all. "What happened?! Where did she go?!" Hook yells, him and David looking equally horrified at the fact that Emma has just disappeared into thin air upon the wish being granted, and the Queen's smile doesn't drop - only grows in the wake of her victory.
A whole new world.
A candle in the shape of a blue star, its wick lit atop its uppermost point, and then we focus on the face of Emma Swan as she prepares to make a wish... and then blows. The flame dies, leaving only smoke in its wake, and then her eyes open, which is met by several cries of, "Happy birthday!" With the shot taking us out, we are soon able to see that the candle was perched in a small cake which Emma was hunched over, for she is currently in a regal pink-white gown at the center of attention among the royal guests which fill the castle hall on behalf of her special day. Everyone is clapping now and Emma smiles as she returns to her full height, her cascading blonde curls held back only by a dainty headband designed to match her dress. She then utters, "Mommy... Daddy..." and we are shown that, at the front of the crowd, Snow White and Prince Charming are clapping with the most enthusiasm. Only, they don't quite look like themselves anymore. They are aged now, their grey hair and wrinkled faces showing every decade that they previously missed out on due to the curse, and they are decorated in a far more grand fashion than normal.
Princess Emma has some qualms about her dreams.
Emma just continues to smile as Queen Snow, King David and the rest of the kingdom clap for her, and then Grumpy - though in this realm he appears less grumpy and more old - begs the princess to tell them what she wished for. The Granny of this land also seems eager to find out, along with the other assembled guests, and Emma's smile can't help but grow as she responds, "Not a thing. Everything I could ever want is right here." Her parents are touched to hear this, and then Granny snaps her fingers to signal for the guards to open up the room's extravagant doors. Caterers then begin to enter with more food for everyone and, as the guests congregate around them, Emma finds herself moving beyond the table, and Snow approaches her to one side in worry. She can tell that something's bothering her daughter and would like to know what's wrong and, as David joins them, Emma admits that, last night, she had a dream that the Queen did cast her curse and she was "the savior" as her parents told her.
Which Queen Snow and King David soon subside.
With a smile, Snow reminds her daughter that all of that was avoided when the Queen was defeated, and Emma knows this. However, she elaborates on her dream, explaining how she was in this strange fantastical land unlike any she's ever seen before and they were still fighting her; all of them. And this place, it had a name. It was called... Storybrooke. The King and Queen don't really know how to respond to this, with the former reaching out his hand and assuring the princess that it was only a dream. At this, Emma tells them that, when she woke up, she found "this", and then she takes out the very same sword that, back before her wish was granted via the Evil Queen, she was about to wield in battle: the one from her visions with the red jewel in the hilt. This new Emma doesn't quite know how to hold it, and she maintains a worried expression as she exclaims that it was under her bed. Snow figures that one of the servants must have put it there, recalling how they were just cleaning the armory, and then a familiar young man interrupts them by repeatedly calling out "oh no" as he rushes to join.
Henry is pleased with his new sword.
The young man is Henry, also dressed in regal attire, and he worriedly asks his mother if he missed her birthday celebrations. Emma doesn't seem to mind that he did though, for he soon explains that he was practicing for tomorrow and lost track of time, begging that his mother please forgive him. "Of course, Henry," she cries, embracing him, and then she takes his hand as she proclaims that she wants his knighting ceremony to be perfect. "You are going to be the noblest knight the kingdom has ever seen." Henry takes great joy in his mother's support, but he soon grows confused when he looks down and notices the sword still in her other hand, asking if it's for him, for tomorrow. Without really waiting for an answer, he takes it, with Emma turning to her parents and not really knowing what to say. The soon-to-be knight then lifts it up and pretends to be wielding it defensively, stating that his name is Sir Henry, Knight of the Realm, and he shall defend all of them.
No matter the realm, Neal's still dead.
His family all smile, taking pride in him, and Emma proceeds to utter that his father would be very proud of him. "I wish... I wish I'd known him," Henry utters in turn as he turns his attention to a portrait on the wall, and soon the others all turn to it as well, at which point we are shown that the portrait is of Neal Cassidy - or rather, Baelfire - dressed in Enchanted Forest style clothing and also wielding a sword. It seems he's dead in this world too, but Emma promises her son that he's watching over him. "He's always watching over you." And a moment of sweetness is shared. David intervenes to say that he believes they have some celebrating to do, holding out his arm for his daughter to take. As she does, he adds that the party's only just begun, and she replies with, "Of course, daddy," as she heads off with him. Henry continues to hold the sword Emma found and Snow begs that he put it away, for this family is done fighting. She then heads off in pursuit of her husband and daughter, who themselves are in pursuit of the table of gifts, while Henry just smiles at his new weapon.
The heroes tear themselves apart.
Henry of the real world, however, has now joined the heroes in Granny's Diner and demands to know where his birth mother has gone. Hook responds that they have no idea, but Regina, who's also grouped with the others, hopes that they're trying to figure it out - after all, she didn't stay behind just so that they could screw things up. David requests that she take it easy on them, for it was the Queen, at which Regina snaps that she knows who it was, then suggesting that perhaps the prince use some of that defensive energy to find out where Emma is. "You're her father! You must have some idea," she declaims, and David yells in response that, yes, he is her father, but that doesn't mean he knows everything. Instead he turns to Hook, pointing out that he lives with her now, and asks if he has any ideas. The pirate cries that if he had an idea then he would have "bloody well" mentioned it by now, only for David to angrily ask how he's able to share a home with someone and not know their secrets. "Because we don't stand around and talk about what happens when a bloody genie appears, mate!" Hook barks. Jasmine, who's since been freed from her binds, attempts to intermediate by insisting that the heroes stop fighting, and then Regina realizes that, right now, they're doing exactly what the Evil Queen wants. She recalls how she said they would tear themselves apart (see "A Bitter Draught") and that's exactly what they're doing. "The Evil Queen has thrown a lot of punches today," the Mayor goes on to state, "But now... I think I know a way to throw one back." She smiles as an idea formulates, and the others look intrigued.
The bell on the door of Mr. Gold Pawnbroker & Antiquities Dealer dings as Mr. Gold himself enters in a rush, swiftly heading over to the counter where his magic globe awaits. Holding out his hand, he makes it so that one of Belle's hairbrushes magically appears in his palm, then taking some strands of hair from it while he plucks some of his own from the back of his scalp. He mixes them together by rubbing both hands, working some sort of spell to devolve them into pure essence, and then he pours this essence into the globe, using his magic in an attempt to lock onto the location of someone who shares both their DNA - their son. Black swirls form on the surface of the globe as a map attempts to take shape, with Rumple even commanding aloud that it show him their son, but the map fails, and the swirls simply continue to be just that. They do attempt to make a configuration of sorts, but then they just disperse and evaporate, and Rumple is most displeased. More than that, though: he is worried.
The Evil Queen takes to enjoying her victory.
Over at the mayoral office, a cocktail shaker moves up and down as Aladdin finds himself compelled to mix drinks for the Evil Queen. She is sitting in her better half's chair, legs up, admiring the genie lamp in her hands. As he completes the shaking process, Aladdin asks his master if she's sure she wants an appletini, wondering if it's not a little on the nose even for her, but the Queen replies that she likes what she likes, and so the genie goes to pour. As he begins to fill the apple-wedged glass with the red alcoholic liquid, he asks if this is her wish, only for her to make clear that it's in fact a request. She then suggests that he heat it, lest he wants things to get even less pleasant than they already are, but Aladdin views this concept as ambitious. The Queen smiles at this and twirls her hand, making it so that she poofs behind her genie in the usual purple cloud. She is very much in his personal space now, excitedly pointing out that there's much they can explore in this "master-genie relationship", and then she begins trailing her fingers down the exposed parts of his chest. "Ambition," he takes her hand and puts the appletini in it, "met." Regina then bursts in, to the Queen's only mild surprise, and asks her evil other self if she's having fun in her office. The Queen replies that, as a matter of fact, she was about to, then turning back to Aladdin and placing a hand on his muscular arm. She winks as well, and he utters, "Ew," before Regina states that she's not there for the Queen's perversions - rather, she's there to get Emma back.
She even tries to get Regina to toast to it.
Aladdin moves around the desk while the Queen perches herself upon it, believing Regina is going to need some good luck with that. She grabs the lamp and assures that the Mayor is not going to get a hold of it, but, even if she did, one can't undo wishes. "Sadly true," Aladdin adds, and the Queen, smiling with her appletini in tow, kicks out a chair for Regina to take a seat. She then approaches the redeemed version of herself and adds that she should have a drink, offering her her own, and give thanks where thanks is due. Regina, now stuck clutching the appletini, asks the Queen what the hell she's talking about, at which the vile villainess re-grabs the lamp and re-positions herself to be back behind the desk, telling Aladdin while she moves to be a dear and mix her another drink. He goes to do this as Regina moves forward, and the Queen finally replies that her better half shouldn't forget: she knows her better than anyone. She is her. And there was a time when all she wanted was to tear Snow and Charming apart and kick Emma Swan out of her town, and she (she outstretches her hand to receive the other appletini from Aladdin) just did both. She then cackles and raises her glass in an attempt to toast, "To you. To me. To us."
But Regina has other plans, and uses a wish for herself.
Regina smiles in return, making it look as though she might actually clink glasses with her serum counterpart, but then her smile becomes a grimace and she just places her drink firmly down on the desk. This disappoints the Queen, who sighs, and then she states that that's why Regina will never be happy - she's won, and she can't even admit it. If she could, she'd see that victory feels luxurious, and, to demonstrate this, the Queen returns to sitting on the mayoral chair, holding both the lamp and her beverage with her feet once again raised. "Yes, I may not be able to get a hold of that genie lamp," Regina responds, "But you're right. We are the same person, which means... you're not the only master of the lamp." Aladdin seems greatly happy with this realization, while the Queen's sense of victory is finally threatened. She utters, "No," but Aladdin utters, "Yes," and then Regina commands, "Genie of the lamp, I wish to be sent to the same place as Emma Swan." "No!" the Queen begs, but Aladdin tells his other master that her wish is his command, then flaying his arm and using his genie magic to make it so. Regina disappears in the same fashion that Emma did earlier, off to join her friend in the wish realm, while the Queen bangs down on the desk and lets out another cry of, "No!" as her anger forces her to expel luxury and return to her feet. It's too late, though. Her second wish is gone, and so is Regina.
Regina has some trouble making friends in the wish realm.
When Regina reappears, she finds herself standing in what looks like the Enchanted Forest; the same fairytale-esque locale with birds tweeting and nature blossoming everywhere. Thankful that she has successfully made it to the wish realm, she then begins to call out for Emma, hoping to find her there, but she receives no response. Instead, all she hears as she begins to move through the woodland clearing... is whistling. Through the trees, she's able to spot a line of dwarfs, led by Stealthy, chiming their "Heigh-Ho" tune as they head off to work with their pickaxes in tow. She's actually somewhat relieved to see them, and calls out with a smile as she approaches them on the road. Grumpy is the first to spot her from the back of the line, and then the others stop in turn, watching in shock as Regina just stands there and claims to be looking for Emma. She asks if they've seen her, but they don't reply, making her more annoyed. She asks again, this time more pointedly, only for Grumpy to respond by exclaiming, "The Evil Queen is back!" In this world, it seems she was never anything more than a villainous tyrant, and thanks to her infamy it also seems that the dwarfs are able to recognize her in spite of her short hair and modern equestrienne fashion. Realizing this, Regina tries assuring them that they don't understand, but they just flinch as she takes a step towards them and tries to proclaim that she's not the Evil Queen anymore. "Move! Move! We must warn them!" Grumpy yells to his brothers, backing away, "The war is not over!" And then they run in fear, off to alert the rest of the kingdom that the villain they fought so hard to defeat has apparently returned. "No!" Regina tries, but it's no use, and then she's left to realize that this rogue rescue mission of hers is going to be a lot tougher than first thought.
Regina is shocked by a statue.
Regina continues to wander the wish realm in search of Emma, following one of the forest trails, and, when at a cross-roads, something shocking catches her eye. She turns the corner to see a magnificent statue built to honor Queen Snow and King David, each of them in their old adventurer gear and brandishing weapons. The Mayor of Storybrooke almost laughs as she stares up at the thing, her gaze then moving down to the plaque upon their pedestal which reveals this site to be the very spot where Snow White and the prince heroically defeated the Evil Queen. "Seriously?" Regina finds herself asking, amused, and then another distraction takes her away: the sound of someone singing. Or rather, humming. She moves through the trees to locate the source, at which point we are shown Emma, her gown now accompanied by gloves and a fur-trimmed cloak, a basket full of flowers on one arm and a large daisy in the other hand. The princess sniffs it before going to collect more from her beautiful forest garden, continuing to hum a familiar tune all the while, and, as she emerges, Regina finds herself exclaiming Emma's name in shock.
Then, by singing princess Emma.
Emma stops dead in the middle of swishing, her song coming to an abrupt end, and she just stares afraid at the woman before her who demands to know, "What the hell happened to you?" "You," Emma responds, "You're the Evil Queen!" This causes Regina to realize that her friend doesn't remember her, and she tries to approach while Emma backs away. The latter claims to know exactly who Regina is, for her parents banished her, but Regina, who finds it very hard to communicate with the person she's talking to now attempting to hide behind a tree, assures that they didn't, that none of this is real, and that she's her friend. Emma is certain that the Queen is no one's friend, with her father having said that she was a liar, but Regina promises that it's not a lie, revealing that, where they're from, they actually share custody of a son. This just confuses the princess further and Regina admits that it's complicated, but the point is that she risked her life coming to this world because... "You're the savior. And your family needs you."
The Charmings are outraged to be faced with their old nemesis.
There is a moment of hesitation as Emma only really gives a blank stare in response, and then Regina finds herself startled by the arrow which flies past her head and into the tree that the blonde is still currently trying to hide behind. The former Queen turns to see David and Snow advancing on her, the latter having been the one to fire the arrow from her bow, and Charming exclaims that this is impossible for she was banished. Snow chimes in that the fairies saw to it that Regina could never return, so there's no way she can be there right now, but all Regina can utter is, "Snow... David..." as she adjusts to their elderly appearance in the wish realm. The King demands that she show some respect, for, with this being their kingdom now, the correct form of address is "your majesties". Regina finds herself amused once more as all she can bring herself to point out is how old they are, and Snow retorts that she can taunt them all she wishes but they shall never back down from protecting their people.
Emma cannot be convinced.
"Emma, these... these people aren't real," Regina then tries, turning back to the princess, but all Emma does is ask her mom and her daddy to please help. Snow and Charming then draw their weapons, meaning Regina tries more and more desperately to convince the former savior that they're hallucinations; a fake reality. David, aiming his sword, demands that Regina step away from his daughter, spurring her to exclaim that Emma has to believe her. Emma refuses to though, and so the aim of David's blade grows truer. He recalls how it banished the Queen from the kingdom once before and now would like to make it permanent, at which Regina begs Emma to see that this isn't the real her and tries to incur some small part of her that must know it. The princess just looks meek, and Regina yells, "Please!" David then finally prepares to swing his sword and so she also yells, "Dammit!" as she's forced to make herself vanish in a flurry of purple smoke in order to avoid it. With the "threat" having escaped, David turns to his wife in extreme vexation.
The leftover heroes form a plan.
David in the real world, meanwhile, frets back in the loft about how he can't do this - just sitting by and waiting - for the Queen is out there and she's got more wishes. Hook implores his mate not to worry because Regina will be back with Emma soon enough, but David wonders what happens after that, asking what's to stop the Queen from making another wish that sends them someplace even worse. He then barks that she has done too much damage to this family and vows not to wake his wife just to tell her that their daughter is missing. After a deep breath, he declares that he's going to get that lamp, only for Hook to get up and stop him when he attempts to actually vacate the loft. The pirate assures that there is nothing he wants more than to make the Evil Queen pay for what she did to Emma, but points out that they are outgunned. They don't have magic, nor do they even have that sword which they thought they could use to defeat her; they need a plan. Jasmine, who's been there the whole time, then steps in and says, somewhat needlessly, "So... any thoughts on this plan?" She adds that she can't bear to think what the Queen is doing to Aladdin, and Hook, wanting to calm her, assures that he knows. David, meanwhile, seems to be legitimately formulating something. Hook asks him what it is and he replies by telling him to go to the sheriff's station. "Meet me there in one hour. The Evil Queen's reign ends today."
Regina pays her old palace a visit.
The Evil Queen's palace is in ruins over in the wish realm, and we see that this is where Regina decided to teleport herself to for refuge. She walks through her old quarters in disgust at the tatters they've been left in. The whole place is trashed. And then... she hears a giggle. A very recognizable, high-pitched, manic giggle, at which points she turns and utters in defiance as she notices the nearby door which leads to the dungeons. We next see her entering into a set of caves, lit only by torches in brackets, and then she cautiously approaches the large cell at the end of the cavern from which more humming can be heard - this time in the same voice as the one which spouted off the penetrating laugh. "There you are!" cries Rumplestiltskin, although he isn't quite visible yet, "Come to see old Rumple, 'ave ya'? Who are ya'? Come... closer." Regina does exactly that, though continuing to exhibit a high level of caution, and then the Dark One startles her by appearing rather suddenly at the bars. He loudly recognizes her as the Queen, shrieking that the apprentice is back - back to see the old master, back again, "Back again!" - and he begins to rattle his cage.
It appears that an extra thirty years locked away have driven him quite a bit madder than he was, as though that were possible, while Regina coolly responds with "please", then saying that she needs his help. Rumple wonders why he would help her, his greatest student and failure, and begins to moan about his Dark Curse - his most precious of curses - which she failed to cast. He is down on the floor now, pointing up at her in anger, but Regina looks down at him and assures that that wasn't her. She explains that she's not the Evil Queen in this reality, which she also says isn't even a reality, for it's all fake. Even he's fake. And now Rumple makes clear that he's intrigued. Still crouching, he moves back over to the bars and beckons his visitor to crouch down opposite him and explain even further. She begins to do so, telling him how this world was created by a wish to trap Emma, and Rumple utters the name with familiarity in his mad voice. He utters it again, and then arrives at the gleeful conclusion that Regina is speaking of the savior. "Oh, perhaps I can help you after all... for a price," he goes on, only for her, now standing again, to laugh off the very idea of a deal, reminding him that he's not even real.
Just old friends talking.
He too returns to his feet, assuring that no one knows more about saviors than him, and all he needs in return is one "teeny tiny" little thing: his freedom. His rotted finger strokes the bar to his cell as he hisses this, and then he turns sad when Regina refuses his offer, claiming that it's not worth it. She begins to walk away with the declaration that the world is better off with him behind bars, but he reminds her how she said that this world isn't real, asking what the harm is in letting a not real him out of a not real prison and into a not real world. And this point, which Regina says is actually a good one, gets her to turn back around; but, she knows better than to take one of his deals, in any realm. She tries to leave again, only for him to point through the gaps in his bars and yell, "Do you know why Emma became the savior in the first place?! You!" This again gets Regina to stop and turn back, and Rumple giggles as he spouts off a "yes", clutching the bars as he croaks that every savior needs a villain. For Emma, that would be the Evil Queen. The real Queen. "Not this pathetic, deluded creature I see before me." A real Queen of power and purpose. One that he knew. One that can remind Emma that the world needs a savior.
A deal is struck, and Rumplestiltskin goes free.
Regina likes the sound of this plan, with Rumple promising that he's right and adding that, should the Queen show the princess her inner darkness, then the savior shall be reborn. He exclaims the last word while throwing his arms up into the air in a melodramatic fashion, and she nods and smiles in gratitude for the advice. She then attempts to leave a third time, only for him to rattle his cage and point out that he's still behind bars. Regina smirks, "Sorry. We're just old friends talking. We haven't made a deal. Remember?" "Oh, I'm well aware, 'old friend'." He then makes a series of noises before adding, "You may know a way to wake Emma up, but you don't know a way back to, what do you call it? Uh... Storybrooke." An eerie smile makes itself known, and Regina demands to know how he knows that name. He giggles, as per usual, and says that that matters not; what does matter is that he can find her a magic bean. She wants to know where, but that is of course going to cost her. He takes a step back and, finally, after much deliberation, Regina lifts her hand and uses her magic to open up the door to his cell. He is free, and after three decades he takes great pleasure in being able to walk out of the dank cave he's been confined to.
Time to go be evil.
Taking a large sniff within the dungeon, he comments that it smells just as dank outside and that he thinks he needs some fresh air, only for Regina to stop him and remind him of the bean he promised her. Rumple turns to her as he recalls this and instructs her to meet him tomorrow at noon, down by the lake, and Regina says that tomorrow at noon it is. She then goes to leave, only for Rumple to interrupt her yet again, laughing that he doesn't know what happened to her - "But you don't exactly inspire fear anymore." He adds that if she's going to play the part of an Evil Queen then she should look like one as well, and so Regina makes a grand gesture of her own and her magic does the rest, momentarily consuming her in purple smoke and making it so that her modern-day attire is replaced by one of her old, dark, more regal ensembles. Fit for both a monarch and a villain. "How's that?" she asks, at which Rumple squees and begins to jump up and down, claiming that it's much better. Much, much, much better. Regina smiles at this, while the Dark One encourages her to go on. "Be evil." One last giggle, and then the "Evil Queen" finally exits the dungeon. Rumple grins, crazy as ever, as he watches her go.
Belle is in no mood for her husband's words.
Belle sits lonely on a park bench, staring out at Storybrooke's lake at nighttime, all the while clutching a teddy bear. She sighs down at it, sad that she wasn't able to gift it to her son, and then her name is uttered by the last voice she has any interest in listening to right now. Her husband is standing by the bench when she looks up in response and, in spite of her less than thrilled expression, he says that she's looking well. "Considering." She asks if he's referring to the fact that he sped up her pregnancy, then revealing that the fairies sped up her recovery too, which, she makes clear, does not excuse anything. The beauty then requests that he don't ask her where she sent their son, because she shan't be telling him, at which Rumple is forced to reveal that he's gone. Belle turns to him, not understanding, before getting to her feet in worry, not letting go of the bear; Rumple uses this time to explain that he used strands of both their hair - their essence - to track him. "He's not here. He's nowhere."
But then she learns that something really is wrong.
The Dark One also knows that his words mean nothing to his wife now, so he decides to start with actions, then gesturing her wrist and making it so that the magical bracelet he earlier stuck her with disappears. This comes as a genuine surprise to Belle, while Rumple adds that this is not part of his control - this is about whether their son is safe. While she's certainly more interested, she can't quite bring herself to respond - to believe him - and so he says, "Fine. Don't take my word for it, I can't blame you. Call the convent." With this, he hands her his cell phone, only for her to stare right at him and take her own phone from out of her pocket, meaning Gold awkwardly has to slip his back into his own. Upon flipping open her device, Belle then starts to dial, eventually getting a hold of one of the nuns. She states who she is and why she's calling, wanting to know if Mother Superior is there, but the news on the other end of the line seems to shock her. She almost loses a grip of her phone as her face turns frightened and she's forced to admit that Rumple was correct: "Something happened."
A ceremony is to take place.
We're carried across the ocean of the wish realm as the view settles on Prince Charming's castle, as impressive as it ever was in the fairytale land of the past, and then we're taken inside to the grand hall - the very same setting where Snow White and her true love married before the entire kingdom. Emma stands within the central structure now, decorated in a smart new gown complete with a white fur wrap and an elegant hairdo, and waits with her parents as a large crowd chatters around them, excited to witness the knighting ceremony about to take place. The dwarfs are in the forefront, even Stealthy, along with friends such as Granny and a magnitude of other regal-looking guests. Queen Snow turns to her daughter, her and her husband's furs also resembling that of the ermine for such a special occasion, and immediately senses her nervousness, and so she reaches out to take her hand, assuring that everything is going to be fine. She adds that they defeated the Evil Queen before and can do it again, but for now just wants to focus on Henry's big day, and Emma, sufficiently comforted, tells her two twin pillars of support that she doesn't know what she'd do without them.
Sir Henry makes his entrance.
It is then that a royal announcer presents "his royal highness" Prince Henry, and trumpets begin to play to mark the entrance of the boy who is about to become a knight. A pair of guards open up the doors, and there he stands, kitted out in golden armor and carrying his helmet under one arm. Emma nods to him, proud, as her son comes to stand at the entrance way and stare out at those who have come to spectate. The princess quietly comments to her mother about how grown up he looks, and Snow smiles, right before Henry begins to walk down the aisle created by the partitioned guests, all of whom bow down out of respect to commemorate the moment. Regina, still dressed as the Evil Queen, watches from behind the doorway and looks just as proud of her son as his other mother does as he completes his walk to the central structure. She goes unnoticed by anyone, especially when the two guards block her view by closing the doors, while Snow goes on to draw King David's sword from its sheath in preparation for what's to come. The guests finish their bowing, and Prince Henry makes it to the top of the structure's steps and to his family, then getting down on one knee par the ceremony.
And then Regina makes hers.
Prepared to knight her grandchild, Snow proceeds to ask, before her people, "Do you, Prince Henry, undertake to accept the accolade of knighthood?" Receiving some smiles of encouragement, the young man looks up at his royal relatives and replies, "I do." His mother's smile is the greatest, while David asks further if he shall conduct himself, in all matters, as befits a knight of this realm. "I will," he replies, and David winks. Snow finishes by saying that it is with pride in their hearts that they - Queen Snow and King David of the Enchanted Forest - do dub him... The whole thing is suddenly interrupted, just as Snow is in the middle of tapping both Henry's shoulders with her husband's blade, and the new knight gets to his feet and turns around in shock along with everyone else as the doors burst open to reveal Queen Regina, in all her evil regal glory. "Sorry I'm late," she says as she did at Snow and Charming's wedding, then emulating the rest of that fateful event by gliding her way down the aisle, to the fear of all those in attendance. Doc even turns to his dwarf brethren to exclaim, "It's the Queen! Run!" But there's no chance to run. The "Evil Queen" soon uses her magic to send the two guards that come running at her, weapons in tow, flying off their feet to either side of the hall.
Only a hero could stop her now.
The attendees gasp and scream in panic, while Snow amends Doc's statement by clutching David's sword and exclaiming in turn that Regina's not the Queen anymore. However, before she can get to calling her stepmother nothing but an evil witch, Regina uses her magic again - this time to freeze both Snow and David to the spot. They find themselves unable to move a muscle as an orange glow washes over them, and Regina, trying her best to sound as evil and as threatening as she once was, goes to declare, "Look at them! Missing out on this... happy, happy day. I vow to destroy their happiness, if it is the last thing I do." As the Queen paces, her new red feather train making for quite the intimidating sweep, Emma appears frightened and looks about ready to hide behind a pillar, but soon she steps forward and begs the grand villainess not to hurt her parents. Regina retorts that hurting them is the point, unless they know of some hero who can stop her. Clearly she is trying to incur Emma to be this hero, and Regina takes interest in the princess' momentary hesitation, thinking she might actually be about to become the savior again as she steps up to defeat her.
But Emma is no hero.
Instead, however, the blonde drops to her knees, bowing her head and placing a hand over her heart as she pleads for mercy. This comes as a great annoyance for Regina, who of course has no actual interest in doing anything villainous, but she can't drop the part, and so she implores Emma to look for that hero - addressing her as "princess" - and, when she finds one, she knows where to find them. Emma, teary-eyed and frightful, grows confused at the plurality enlisted by the Queen's statement, while the Queen herself continues to wait in the hopes that Emma might stand up to her at the last minute. She doesn't though, and so the Queen just waves her hand and makes it so that she, Snow and David all vanish in flurries of purple smoke. It is then that Emma gets to her feet, met by more of the people's gasps and cries, and she begins looking around in horror. Sir Henry then approaches his mother and asks her what they're going to do, at which the blonde replies, "Don't worry, kid. I have this." But does she?
Back over in Storybrooke, we are shown a clock on a wall which reveals the time to be almost nine minutes past ten at night, and, as the second hand continues to move around, taking us closer to ten minutes past the hour, we hear Hook's voice asking to clarify that David said he would be meeting them at ten o'clock. "Right?" Indeed, right now he is standing in the town's sheriff station along with Jasmine, the both of them waiting for the prince so that he can explain this plan of his to them and then presumably take steps towards actually carrying it out. However, it appears he's failed to show up, and now the pirate is beginning to worry about what his mate really has planned, or that something has perhaps happened to him. "Where is David anyway?" he asks, still staring at the clock on the wall, and Jasmine turns to look at it as well, and then back to Hook as he begins to fret that the prince would never be late - it simply isn't like him. And so David's true whereabouts remains not only a mystery, but a deep concern.
The Queen is more than a match for the prince.
A sword slides over the floor of Regina's office, landing at the Evil Queen's feet, as David's whereabouts are revealed to us. The Queen, who is stood facing the window with the genie lamp perched on her desk, seems enthralled by the arrival of the prince, a large grin appearing on her face as she turns around to greet him properly. She comments that she thought she smelled earnestness, only for him, sword in tow, to beg for her to please pick up the other sword he just provided her with. It remains at her feet, and she just chuckles, asking, "Why me? You're the one who dropped it." David replies that he's starting to wonder if she still has it, pointing out that thus far she's used an assassin (see "A Bitter Draught"), Gold's magic (see "Heartless"), and now a genie. "Why don't you try doing something for yourself for a change, you snake?!" With this, he charges at her, wanting to use his blade to finally strike her down. However, she simply raises an arm and, with minimal effort, sends him hurtling against the far wall. He lands in a heap on the floor, losing grip of his sword, while the Evil Queen approaches and questions his use of the insult "snake".
Until he gets his hands on her lamp.
As she begins to move around him, she asks if he remains aware that he can't kill her, then throwing an insult of her own as she names him an imbecilic shepherd. He isn't so imbecilic, though, for it turns out this was his plan all along - to get her to move away from the desk, which allows him the chance to make a dash for it. Before the Queen is able to react, the prince has managed to scoop up the genie lamp, telling her, "Thanks for the tip. I know I can't kill you. But I can do something much worse." He proceeds to rub the lamp's side and make it so that Aladdin appears from the spout in an array of orange mist. As the magic's wind whooshes over him, he appears indignant to have once again been summoned by his villainous controller. However, he then takes note of the turn of events, and now he's overjoyed. In a cheerful tone, he asks David if he's his new master, and, with equal cheeriness, David replies, "Yeah, Aladdin, I am." He then stares at the Queen, who responds to his smile with a look of scathing hatred, but he's just too happy about now having the chance to defeat her once and for all.
David wastes a wish.
"Careful!" the Queen warns, "Don't dabble with forces you don't understand!" But David, still holding the genie lamp and with Aladdin by his side, assures that he's going to be quite careful. Aladdin chimes in that the prince's wish is his command, especially if it's going to hurt the Queen, and the Queen just looks indignant while the genie then reminds his new master that all wishes come with a price. David says that he knows, and that's why he's not going to wish for anything to do with Emma or Snow or anyone he actually cares about - no, the only one that's going to pay the price is the Queen. "Genie," David finally begins, "I wish... that the Evil Queen gets exactly what she deserves." The Queen appears genuinely fearful, and then Aladdin flays his hand outward as he grants his master's wish... but nothing happens. The villainess seems as surprised as the heroes, checking herself for any harm but finding nothing, and David asks Aladdin what's going on. Aladdin doesn't know though, assuring that he granted the wish, and then the Queen starts to laugh, telling him that, no, he didn't. "You wasted it. All I ever wanted was to rip your family apart and now look. Your daughter's trapped in a wish, your wife is slumbering forever, and you... you are all left alone. Don't you get it? You can't wish for me to get 'everything I deserve' because I already have it."
The Queen is outnumbered, but would rather see her enemies suffer.
She is very high and mighty right now, with David growing sadder, and then angrier. He roars that he will destroy her, finally picking that sword up off the floor and running at her with it, only for her to once again use her magic to stop him. This time, she levitates him off the ground by his throat, making a choking gesture as she strangles him telekinetically. The sword drops and Charming struggles to breathe, the Queen smiling all the while. "Look at you," she beams, "Such bloodlust! I always knew darkness would be a lovely shade on you." Suddenly, however, they are interrupted by the cry of David's name, for Hook and Jasmine come bursting into the office. The latter runs to Aladdin, hugging him in relief after seeing that he's okay, while the pirate aims his sword at the now perturbed Queen. She continues to choke David and so Hook orders her to let him go, with Henry then running up to join him. He points out that she's outnumbered, and they've got the lamp (which Jasmine is now clutching), so she's lost. Finally, the Queen decides to relinquish her magical grip on the prince's throat and allows him to drop to the floor, gasping for air. Now looking down on him, she exclaims that death is too good for him anyway, and she'd rather watch him suffer. With that, she poofs away, meaning Hook can lower his sword and Jasmine can rush to David's side in order to tend to him. He begins to get to his feet, looking up at his friends.
Emma hands over the key to the kingdom.
Over in the wish realm, however, David remains under threat from another "Evil Queen", along with his wife Snow. He assures Regina that whatever she's planning won't work, for they will defeat her as they always do. Regina, who right now is pacing, agitated, up and down the private quarters of her palace, retorts that that's what she's counting on, with her two prisoners currently sitting on a wrecked piece of furniture with their hands tied. "Don't worry!" Emma then exclaims as she enters the room, a box in tow, "She's not going to hurt you." She whispers to her parents that it's going to be okay, and Regina seems happy that the princess has finally come to face her, claiming that she knew she'd find the hero in her. The Queen then expresses interest in getting this over with, proceeding to conjure a fireball, while Emma just slowly steps forward with that box of hers. Regina finds herself questioning what's inside it, wondering if it's perhaps some kind of weapon, but Emma just bows in submission as she opens it up, revealing the key to her parents' kingdom. She says that it is now Regina's, addressing her as "your majesty", and states that they surrender, and Regina cannot believe what she's hearing.
So Regina resorts to some drastic measures.
Upon being asked if she's serious, Emma mumbles meekly that she'd do anything to protect her parents, at which Regina extinguishes her magical flame in anger. She grabs the key to the kingdom and complains that she doesn't want it, throwing it to one side, then turning around and yelling in frustration that she just wants her to remember who she is and to get her back to Storybrooke. "Storybrooke? Like in my dream?" Emma questions, not understanding how the Queen is aware of it, but Regina fires back that this is the dream. The world she's in now. And now she has to wake her up. "I know you won't believe it, Emma, so... I really am sorry about this," the faux villainess declares before plunging either hand into the respective chests of King David and Queen Snow. Emma cries out in defiance, shocked by the sight of her parents' hearts being ripped out, while Regina just stands before her, clutching them. The princess weeps that she already gave her the kingdom - she gave her everything - and begs to know what more she could do.
And then is forced to follow through.
She drops to her knees again while saying this, placing the key's box to one side, and Regina responds to the tear-riddled wuss that she can be the savior and stop her. Emma can't bring herself to respond in turn though, and so Regina then exclaims that, if she doesn't, her parents die. To make clear how serious she is, she squeezes their hearts and makes it so that the both of them writhe in pain. "I'm not a hero, I..." Emma continues to weep, sinking even lower, "I'm not... the s-s-savior." "Yes you are!" the Queen assures, "I know you, Emma, you fight when it matters! You always do! Right now, you need to fight!" She squeezes the hearts again, causing the elderly royals even more pain, and Emma just keeps on weeping and sinking and begging more and more. "Oh, come on, Miss Swan!" Regina rages, met by scared whimpers. She asks if Emma wants her parents' blood on her hands which of course she doesn't, but all she can give in the way of a negative response is a series of sobs. "Do you?!" Regina shouts finally and, in all her frustration and exasperation, she squeezes too hard, and the hearts of this world's Snow White and Prince Charming are crushed into dust.
Henry arrives to avenge his grandparents.
The two of them die quietly where they sit, flopping lifelessly to one side, and Emma cries even louder as she stares at their corpses and reacts in utter anguish. Regina feels anguished too, but for different reasons, and she just lets the hearts' grit slip from her palms as she stares hopelessly at this pathetic version of her friend. Emma's cries fill the chamber, with Regina uttering that she must really not remember; she really couldn't fight her. She turns away from her in shame, but then her utterances are met with a reply: "She may not have fought, but I will!" It's Sir Henry, entering the room in all his armored finery, bringing with him the sword he took from Emma a day previous. The one from her visions back in Storybrooke. Regina turns to her adoptive son in surprise, while he roars that she murdered his grandparents and, for that, she will pay. "Oh, no, Henry, I..." Regina tries, but it's no use; Emma cries her son's name, getting to her feet, but he just assures her that it's okay as he beckons for her to get behind him. She does, but still cries out, fearing that something might happen to him too.
But Emma stops him.
He just makes clear that he's got this, wanting to put this new weapon of his to good use by using it to slay the Queen, but she just shakes her head and assures, "I won't hurt you, Henry." "But I will hurt you," the young knight promises, and then Regina closes her eyes as she quietly accepts her fate. Emma watches this, and something appears to dawn on her, and then Henry throws his sword over his head in the same fashion that his grandfather and birth mother have in the past. That same mother, however, is heard yelling, "Henry, stop!" and both Henry and the sword freeze when a red glow encompasses them. The sword remains in mid-air, having been about to fly through Regina, who just stands there in astonishment. Emma, meanwhile, stands opposite her, her hand still flayed after having just performed magic to save the Queen's life from their son. Both women are shocked, and Regina finds herself calling out Emma's name as she hopes for some recognition. Emma breathes deeply in response, taking a look around and seeming as though she's just woken up or something, and then Regina states that she saved her.
For now, she remembers, and is ready to be the savior again.
"Yeah, well," the blonde replies, "You came to this crazy land to save me, so it's only fair, right?" She wipes the tears off her face as she says this, while Regina clarifies that Emma remembers. Indeed she does, to her friend's deep relief, and she touches the shoulder of the frozen Henry as she explains that, when she saw the Queen couldn't hurt him, and when he was about to actually kill and become everything she never wanted him to be, that's when she knew. Regina smiles, while Emma turns to her dead parents in worry. "Oh, they're not real," Regina promises, "I didn't actually kill anyone," and Emma says she knows - she just needed to wake her. "Thank you. Although that was... very dark," the savior points out, for that's what she is once more: the savior. She plucks the red-jeweled sword from its position in mid-air and prepares to wield it once more, then saying, "Come on. Let's go stop the real Evil Queen."
The figure in the hood finally emerges.
Right now, the real Evil Queen is wandering down Main Street, having poofed there after fleeing the office. As she looks around, she comments that this town is almost tolerable, then seeing as Grumpy and Sneezy exit Granny's Diner, and so she adds, "When the peasantry is hidden away." Frightened by the Queen's presence, Grumpy whispers for his brother to call Charming, and Sneezy begins to fumble with his cell phone before a great, thunderous glow suddenly emanates from within the diner. The Queen looks confused by this, while Grumpy recognizes it to be a portal. "We've been portaled!" he yells in fear as he and Sneezy begin running off down the road. Assuming that the apparent portal has marked the return of Emma and Regina, the Queen sighs that that was faster than she thought, and then begins to approach the diner. However, when the front door opens, it is neither Emma nor Regina who steps on out. Instead, it is an unknown hooded figure. The very same one who is fated to kill the savior, according to her visions. And the Evil Queen remains intrigued.
And the Evil Queen gets exactly what she deserves.
The figure approaches, moving eerily, while the Queen finds herself asking, "Who the hell are you?" Instead of giving a response, the mystery villain just outstretches their gloved hand and makes it so that the Queen goes flying backwards, landing on a heap on the pavement. She gets to her feet while the figure makes their way back down Main Street, and she breathes heavily in fear. As it turns out, she is right to be afraid, for the figure then turns to her and unleashes a trail of black smoke which soon begins to grow and wrap itself around her like a whirlwind. She stands there, trapped by the stranger's magic, and the last we see of her face is a look of shocked defeat. When the smoke clears, there is no longer an Evil Queen - just a cage where she once stood. And, in that cage, writhing around while the hooded figure continues to make their way down Main Street, is a snake. A luminous cobra that struggles and hisses and remains with a golden cuff around its neck. It seems the Queen got exactly what she deserves after all.
Blue reveals that the Black Fairy took Gideon.
"Mother Superior was found in the forest," Granny explains as she accompanies Belle and Rumple to the Blue Fairy's bedside in the convent. Seeing the rough state her friend appears to be in, Belle demands to know what happened, needing to know if she's going to be okay, and Blue wakes with a start as she takes a deep breath. Belle crouches before her and gently utters her name, wanting her to tell them what happened to their son, and the roughed up nun explains that it was dark and she fought as hard as she could but "she" took him. "Who? Who took him?!" Belle needs to know, with Granny exerting worry as well and Rumple just staring down at the fairy, barely able to handle the news as it is. And then Blue reveals the identity of the "she" who kidnapped Gideon: the Black Fairy. Rumple's expression turns worse as it dawns on him - the idea that his wretched mother now has her hands on his and Belle's baby boy - and Belle turns to him in utter shock, the both of them distraught. He looks to her, and then she looks back to Blue, eyes wide, not knowing what to make of all this.
Emma realizes that she needs all the fighting and pain in order to be her.
Emma tells Regina as the two of them stroll by the lake of the wish realm that Storybrooke felt like a dream, and now this place does. She elaborates that it was a good dream, but the person she was there just wasn't her; the fighting and the pain is what makes her her, and she's good with that. Even if it means her end. While declaring this, she stares down at the sword that will apparently kill her, still decked out like a princess while Regina is back to sporting her previous modern day attire. The savior then adds that that other person - the persona she adopted while she wasn't the savior - "kind of sucked", and Regina is forced to agree, saying that singing princess Emma isn't her favorite model. Emma tries arguing that she didn't sing, but Regina gives her a look, and so the blonde adds, "That you saw," and the both of them chuckle. Regina then proclaims that they should be getting home, before looking around and asking where "he" is. Emma wonders to whom she is referring and Regina reveals that she sort of made a deal with the Dark One and let him out of his cage for a ticket home, to Emma's shock.
Rumple delivers the magic bean.
She worriedly points out that he could be razing villages or something, but, before Regina can respond, the two of them are met by an insane giggle. They turn, and there stands Rumplestiltskin, by the lake at noon as promised. "Well, dearie," he exclaims, "On behalf of all Rumplestiltskins everywhere, I'm here to make good on my word." Regina then turns to Emma in a smug sort of manner, while Rumple approaches the "princess" and asks if she's sure she wants to leave all of this behind. The look she purveys says it all though, and Regina just wants to know where that bean is. Rumple drops it into her palm, "as promis-ed", and instructs that she need only throw it down and think about where she wants to go. Regina holds it up and inspects it, happy that Rumple doesn't seem to have betrayed them, and then she thanks him, at which he quips that he's off to raze some fake villages. After he vanishes in a flurry of red, Regina turns to Emma with the bean in tow and asks her if she's ready. Emma nods, saying, "Let's go home."
David is in desperate need of his wife.
Back in Storybrooke, Snow remains slumbering in her and David's bed while the latter, standing over her, begins to question what he has become. He exclaims to Hook that he wanted to execute the Evil Queen back in the Enchanted Forest but it was Snow who convinced him to show mercy (see "The Cricket Game"), then asking if he's in fact just like his brother. Hook assures his mate that he's not though, for they all make mistakes and that doesn't change who they are. "Now go and kiss your damn wife." David exhales deeply and places a hand on Hook's shoulder as a sign of thanks, but then he is distracted from the awakening process because Henry soon files into the loft followed by Aladdin and Jasmine, the latter of whom is still carrying the genie lamp. She approaches David and suggests that perhaps he could use a wish to break his curse with Snow, but David, taking the lamp and thanking the princess, says that with the way wishes have been going today he's afraid it might just make things worse. "No, the lamp is yours. You're the genie's new master now. I trust that you will be wise with this power," the prince declares, handing it back to her, and she thanks him.
Aladdin and Jasmine prepare to return to Agrabah.
She assures that she understands the risks but that she and Aladdin have to try. They have to find Agrabah. Henry asks if she's sure that's a good idea, to which Jasmine assures that, whatever the price, she owes it to her people, and she's willing to make the sacrifice. "We both are," Aladdin adds, stepping forward, and then she takes his hand. Henry tells them both that they'll miss them but Aladdin tells him not to, for they'll be back. "Until then, give this to your mum for me. From one savior to another," he goes on, handing Henry his hero's scarab. The young man takes it with the intention of passing it on to Emma when she returns, and then Jasmine turns to Aladdin, the lamp in one hand and his hand in the other, and asks if he trusts her. "Always, princess," he responds, and she smiles, saying, "Then... I wish for you to take us to Agrabah." And, with that, Aladdin raises his hand and the two of them vanish. Back to their home realm - presumably. The heroes seem sad to see them go.
Rumbelle frets over what's happened to their son.
"The Black Fairy," Belle is fretting over at Mr. Gold Pawnbroker & Antiquities Dealer, "Your mother?!" Rumple takes this opportunity to remind her that she's the one who entrusted their son to "that gnat", but she sees little point in him trying to call her out on her mistakes after what he did to her. However, he proceeds to utter her name and swear that he was not the one to dose her with that ageing magic, and she just looks at him. "I couldn't," he adds, looking deeply genuine - because of course, he is - and Belle continues to stare, looking as though she's not quite sure what to believe anymore. She then closes her eyes and shakes her head, looking back at him only to ask, with a catch in her throat, "What have we done to each other?" She is deeply sad now, as is he, and then, "And what have we done to our son?" Rumple steps forward at this, replying that they have to work together before it's too late. He places his hand on her arm and she lets him, and then he explains that there are realms of dark magic beyond even his reach, where his mother would lurk in the shadow. Belle asks where she's taken him, but Rumple doesn't know, only being able to figure that it is a place of immense dark power where time works differently and nothing makes sense. This description worries Belle even more as tears grow visible. After his declaration that anything's possible, she demands to know what could happen to their son, but he can't bring himself to tell her.
The heroes learn of the Queen's fate, but not of who inflicted it.
Leroy enters the loft with both a large object covered by a tarp and the announcement of "big trouble". Big trouble. The heroes stare at him confused and, as he parks the large object down on the floor, David asks him what the hell it is. "That," Grumpy announces, ripping back the tarp to reveal a cobra in a cage, "is the Evil Queen," and the heroes seem surprised as they stare down at the trapped, hissing cobra. Upon a moment of reflection, David comes to realize that his wish came true, for the Queen got what she deserved, and he turns to Hook and Henry as they begin to wonder who did this to her. Leroy reveals that it was a guy in a hood, who David instantly knows to be from Emma's vision, and then he asks the dwarf if he saw him. Grumpy is unable to reply, to the heroes' further perturbation, and so David asks more pointedly, "Did you see who was under that hood?!"
The figure in the hood is finally unveiled.
The silhouette of the hooded figure approaches the door to the pawn shop, and Gold and Belle turn to him in bewilderment, too concerned about the whereabouts of their son to be worrying about the town's newest villain. As the mystery assailant enters the establishment and begins to wander through it, however, their attitude changes, for they begin to realize what's going on. Rumple remains with an arm around his wife, the two of them in both denial and shock, and then, with the door having drifted shut behind him, the figure under the hood finally lifts back his cowl and reveals himself to be none other than... Gideon. All grown up. "Hello, mother," he greets as Belle's face exhibits deep upset, and then, "Hello, father," to an equally devastated Rumple. Their son is a villain now, and he stands before them as dark as both the night he emerged from and the fairy who took him, apparently destined to be the one to kill Emma Swan.
The return of Robin Hood spells trouble.
Emma, meanwhile, watches as Regina drops the magic bean into the ground and allows a portal to open back to Storybrooke. The two of them join hands, ready to jump through it together and return home, but, as they take the first step forward across the lakeside sand and pebbles, they are suddenly forced to duck thanks to an arrow flying overhead. It lands in the bark of the fallen tree beside them, and Regina is about to ask what the hell is going on before a second arrow joins its twin in the same tree trunk. "Not another step, ladies!" calls a familiar voice, and Regina whips her head round in shock while Emma stares in disbelief. "No..." the blonde utters as Regina gets to her feet, adding, "It can't be." And then we see to whom the voice belongs - it's Robin Hood. Well, at least this realm's version of him, anyway. He looks as youthful as ever, although far less heroic, as he aims another arrow at the two women trying to make it home. He then announces that this is a robbery, and Regina, entranced by her true love, begins to walk towards him. Emma utters her name while she utters Robin's, who exclaims, "Let's go! Off with the jewelry!"
Love conquers reason, as Regina and Emma lose their way home.
With one eye on the portal, which is sure to close soon, and another on Regina, who continues moving in the direction of her pretend late lover, Emma tries to remind her friend of what she told her - that the people of this land aren't real. She repeats it again - he's not real - and turns as the portal grows more violent, needing for someone to go down it right away. It's like Regina can't hear the savior, though. More steps, accompanied by tears and an ignorant smile. Robin just looks confused, shifting the aim of his bow from one victim to the other, while Emma yells that they've got to go. "Regina!" And then... the portal closes. It just shrinks and closes in on itself and then it disappears, meaning the bean has been wasted and the two of them now have no clear way of getting back home. Back to their actual loved ones. All thanks to Regina's love for Robin Hood. She continues to stare at him, that witless grin etched on her face, while he stares back at her with cold detachment, wanting only to rob her as his aim remains true. Emma, at the same time, just looks to where the portal used to be and starts to distress about what on earth - or rather, the wish realm - they're going to do now.
- The title card of this episode features the commemorative statue of Snow and David from the alternate reality.
- Although credited, Rebecca Mader (Zelena/Wicked Witch) is absent from this episode.
- The title of this episode is derived from the Pink Floyd song and album of the same name, with Adam Horowitz being a self-confessed fan of the band.
- In the original script for this episode, the Evil Queen simply referred to David as "sleeping Dad", as opposed to "sleeping daddy". There was also an additional line stating, "So hard to keep track of who's awake nowadays."
- Additionally, one of Hook's lines from the original script - "YOU are Prince bloody Charming and I'M Captain Hook. Not the other way around --" - didn't make it into the final cut of the episode.
- Also, a line from Emma in the wish realm was altered. Originally, upon seeing Regina, she was to say, "You. It's you... You're the Evil Queen. How is that possible? We defeated you --" whereas in the actual episode she merely states, "You... you're the Evil Queen."
- The portion of this episode set in the wish realm makes several references to the pilot episode, namely the scene where Regina crashes Henry's knighting ceremony in the same manner that she crashed Snow and Charming's wedding, even repeating a lot of the same dialogue. Additionally, there is Emma making a birthday wish on the same style of blue star candle she had back in her apartment in Boston, and also the lake where she and Regina meet with Rumple is the same lake that Charming rode past in the very first shot of the series. However, whether it is meant to be the same lake, in-universe, is questionable.
- The oil painting of Baelfire featured in the wish realm required the approval of Michael Raymond-James.
- The song hummed by Princess Emma while she's gathering flowers in the woods is "Someday My Prince Will Come" from Disney's Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs.
- In the same scene, Queen Snow sports the same outfit worn by Mary Margaret back in the episode "Nimue".
- The title of this episode was officially confirmed by executive producer/co-creator Adam Horowitz, via his Twitter account, on October 14, 2016.
- This episode marks the thirty-second writing credit for the series' co-creators Edward Kitsis and Adam Horowitz.
The episode is among the lowest rated episodes of the series, placing a 0.9/3 rating among 18-49s with 3.25 million viewers tuning in.
This episode received mixed reviews from critics.
- Christine Laskodi of TV Fantic gave the episode a mild review: 3.5 out of 5.0
- Justin Kirkland of Entertainment Weekly gave the episode an A.
- Other reviews were more critical, criticizing the fanfiction-like nature of the episode, the predictability of the plot twists, and the repetition of familiar tropes.
Gallery of photographic stills released to promote the episode.
- ↑ Adam Horowitz tweet #1.
- ↑ Adam Horowitz tweet #2.
- ↑ Adam Horowitz tweet #3.
- ↑ Adam Horowitz tweet #4.
- ↑ TV Ratings Sunday: ‘Secrets and Lies’ ends quietly, ‘Simpsons’ and FOX get NFL bumps, by Rick Porter, Screener/Zap2It (December 5, 2016)
- ↑ "Once Upon a Time Review: Wish You Were Here", by Christine Laskodi, TV Fanatic (December 4, 2016)
- ↑ "Once Upon a Time recap: Wish You Were Here", by Justin Kirkland, Entertainment Weekly (December 4, 2016)
- ↑ Once Upon a Time “Wish You Were Here” Review (Season 6 Episode 10), by Once Upon a Time Reviews, TV Equals (December 5, 2016)