The Enchanted Forest Many Years Ago.
"Gracie come here please," The Evil Queen called from where she was sitting in front of her mirror.
Gracie came quickly to her Mother's side, a small smile on her face.
"Rumple told me you can control your magic now?" Regina turned Gracie around and brushed her short, very dark hair, "Is that true?"
"Yes, it is!" Gracie squealed happily, "This necklace helped me control my magic!"
"We are going to make sure you never lose that necklace," Regina spun Gracie back around and kissed her head, "now run along and go to your classes. And come straight home, no messing around."
Gracie nodded and flicked her hands up. Blue smoke engulfed her as she disappeared into the air.
"They grow up so quick," Regina smiled proudly.
Rumple sat at a table in his castle with Belle across from him reading a book. It was only the two of them until Gracie appeared behind Rumple, using her magic of course.
"I've been waiting for you, dearie," Rumple turned around to face the young girl.
"I'm sorry I'm late," Gracie apologized as she pranced around the room, "I didn't know which dress to wear."
Belle smiled at the highly energized girl. Gracie always brought a smile onto everyone's face, even the Dark One himself couldn't resist the urge.
"Alright enough dallying around, we have an important lesson today," Rumple let out his signature laugh, "it will determine if you have the potential to continue these lessons."
Belle stood up from her seat with a concerned look, "I don't think this lesson is a good idea, I mean she's only eight."
"She has to learn that she has powerful magic," Rumple said, and with a snap of his fingers he was in the forest with Gracie.
A white unicorn stood before them. It towered over Gracie, who was in awe of the mystical creature.
"He's a beauty isn't he?" Gracie nodded her head with a bright smile on her face, "Now immobilize it."
Gracie looked at her teacher skeptically, but did what she was told with ease.
"Good, now this is the part your mother struggled with, rip out its heart," Rumple pointed to where the unicorns heart sat in its chest.
"I don't know how," Gracie looked at the unicorn worriedly.
"You're Gracie, you'll figure it out."
Rumple's high expectations boosted Gracie's confidence. Her hand slowly reached out towards the unicorn, and swiftly she plunged her hand into its chest and pulled out the heart. Rumple looked at her approvingly.
"Now crush it."
Gracie was taken back by this. The unicorn unfroze and collapsed to the ground.
"It hasn't done anything to me," Gracie looked at Rumple, "it doesn't deserve to die."
"Magic is power, you need to know how to take power," Rumple had more patience with Gracie than he did with her Mother, "you have potential to be one of the most powerful people. Sometimes the innocent have to be sacrificed for power."
"That's why Mother is the way she is?" Gracie asked, "To be powerful? What's so important about being powerful?"
"Well, dearie, when you have power people fear you, and when people fear you, you get what you want," Rumple smiled down at his little student, "so crush that heart and you'll have everything you want."
"Seems fair," Gracie shrugged her shoulders.
She glanced at the pure white unicorn then back to its heart. She squeezed the heart and the horse made squealing noises as the life was being taken out of it. The heart turned to black dust, and it fell out of Gracie's hand and floated away in the wind.
"How do you feel?" Rumple looked at the little girl who was looking straight ahead, no emotions were on her face.
A small, devilish grin formed on her lips.
"I feel great," Gracie turned towards Rumple, "and powerful."
"I knew you'd be my best student," Rumple patted Gracie on the back.
Gracie ran into her Mother's room without knocking. Excitement was seeping through every bit of her.
"You won't believe what I just did!" She jumped into her Mother's lap.
"I was watching through my mirror Gracie," Regina hugged her daughter tightly, "I'm very proud of you."
"Will I be like you one day?" Gracie looked into her Mother's eyes.
"What do you mean?" Regina asked.
"Well you're really powerful and strong and tough and so much more, I want to be like you," Gracie smiled, and Regina's heart melted.
"Sweetie, you're going to be better than me," Regina pushed a stray strand of hair out of Gracie's face, "you're going to be the next Evil Queen."
The two girl smiled bright and embraced each other in a hug. All Regina wanted was someone to keep her kingdom once she couldn't. Now she not only had someone to rule for years after her, she had a daughter she loved more than anything in the world. Regina would give up everything for her little girl. Even though Gracie truly wasn't Regina's daughter, she was the closest thing she'd ever have to family.
A/N So I took the idea of when Regina was told to kill the unicorn and used it because it symbolized something for Gracie. The pure white horse was supposed to be like her heart, pure, and when she turned the heart into dust it's showing that she's not pure anymore, she has darkness within her. I hope you enjoyed the chapter!
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