Lean on Me

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I woke up and saw Robin staring at Neal who was sleeping in my elbow. "Babe, I didn't talk to you about it yesterday but legally, Neal is now under our custody, are you okay with that?" I asked brushing his hair back, he was so little, almost three, and he was already an orphan.

"Regina of course I am okay with this, he needs us and I love Neal as if he were my own, we will raise him as if you carried him in you, the same amount of love, but we cannot leave out his mother, she must be remembered." Robin said sighing at the sleeping boy, I nodded and carefully sat up, Robin kissed my head and stood up, walking downstairs to make breakfast, it was early, barely five, but sleeping seemed selfish, I should be doing something to help, to console.

I felt him stir then open his eyes at me, tears welling up in them. "Mommy, I want mommy." He whimpered, curling into a ball of quiet sobs, the fatigue still thick in his mind, I rubbed circles on his back slowly and hummed softly in his ear a soothing tune, making his crying lessen, but not stopping mine one bit. I kept rubbing his back even when I could tell that he was asleep, I needed him to feel whole again, and somehow this was a small factor that would help.

I knew David and Snow would want their son cared for, and that's exactly what I was going to do.

I got up and walked out of the room, answering the knocking at my door.

"Emma? How are you holding up?" I asked sadly, she had bags under her eyes and they were red from crying. "As best as I can at this point. I was wondering if I could have my brother for the day, I want him still to be comfortable around me, and I also want some time with him before I have to say goodbye." She said shedding a tear, besides Henry, Neal was the only thing she had left to remind her of her parents.

"Of course, he is your brother, I never asked you if you wanted to raise him..." I started, she shed some more tears and walked in, nodding. "I want to try, he is the last thing I have left of my parents." She said sadly, I nodded and slowly walked upstairs, gently lifting Neal into my arms, returning downstairs and placing him in the awaiting car seat in Emma's car.

Before she pulled out I opened the car door and placed a kiss on his cheek, I tried my best to remain strong, to not guilt Emma or risk having a full on meltdown in the driveway. I watched them drive away and disappear down the street.

"Ah my mother hen, how are you?" Robin asked pulling me into his chest, I finally started crying, crumbling into the living room, Robin caught me and lowered down with me, placing me into his lap. "Regina I'm sorry that this happened, Snow was a wonderful friend, to both of us." He said cupping my head into his chest, guilt filled my heart, she was gone because of me, she took my fate.

"Regina I know what you're thinking." Robin said taking my teary face into his palms gently, my eyes met his and he tapped his forehead on mine. "It is not your fault that Snow died, she sacrificed herself so that you could have your happy ending, knowing that we could watch over her son, but no one blames you, so you should not blame yourself." He said kissing my nose, I whimpered and nodded, he helped me up and into the shower.

"Come on." He said gently, leading me into the large walk in shower. I leaned on his chest and inhaled as the hot water hit both of us, a numbness taking over.

I quickly dressed myself and started cleaning, trying to keep myself busy for the remainder of the day, Henry and Roland were still distraught and kept avoiding every reason to talk about it.

I silently worked on dinner in the kitchen while Henry sat at the counter with his cell phone, dialing a number repeatedly and listening. I quietly walked towards him, close enough so I could listen, my heart dropped when I heard the sound of Snow's voicemail playing. She was like another mother to Henry, when Emma and I were losing our minds or doing something to save someone she was always waiting for him with open arms and his favorite cherry vanilla ice cream. I put my spatula down and wiped my hands off on my apron and walked over to him, gently taking his phone from him and placing it on the counter in front of him.

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