Chapter 30

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The Enchanted Forest Many Years Ago

A swirl of blue smoke engulfed Gracie and Red as they were transported to the forest near Regina's castle. Gracie peeked out from behind a large tree and stared at the place she used to call home.

She turned back towards Red, "How good are you with a sword?"

Two swords appeared in her hands and Gracie gave Red the choice of which one she wanted.

"I've used one once or twice," Red said, "But Regina has magic. Swords are nothing against her."

"Regina may have magic, but the guards don't." Gracie replied as a bow and quiver of arrows appeared on her back.

Red couldn't help but smile at the young girl, "The same weapon your Mother uses."

"She taught me when I was 7. That was the year they had me before Regina took me again."

Gracie started making her way towards palace, Red close behind. Gracie knew where her parents were being held. Regina held her prisoners all in the same place, the same place where she held all the hearts of people that unfortunately crossed her path. Gracie had been down there a few times. Some of the hearts were even ones that Gracie had taken. Guilt immediately flooded through the small child.

"How are we going to get in there?" Red whispered.

"There's a tunnel underground that leads into the castle. We can go through it and sneak our way to where they're being held."

"Why can't you just magic us into there?" Red asked.

"Who knows what we could pop up in the middle of," Gracie said as if it was obvious, "we could end up surrounded by guards."

"Good point."

Gracie began moving rocks, revealing a wooden trap door in the ground.

"Regina made this just in case she ever needed a quick escape," Gracie informed Red, removing the last medium-sized rock.

Her small hand waved over the door, a light shimmering over it for a split second. The protection spell had easily been undone, and Gracie sighed in relief that Regina hadn't used blood magic. With another shift of Gracie's hand, the door swung open revealing the dark tunnel. In a second the light lit up from the glow of the fireball in Gracie's hand.

"You use magic a lot, don't you?" Red asked.

"If I'm stuck with it I might as well use it," Gracie shrugged.

"I guess it's no different than me using my wolf."

Gracie smiled up at Red, happy to finally have someone that understood her. They were both blessed yet cursed at the same time. They both loved yet hated their abilities. And they both willingly used them.

Gracie stepped into the hall slowly and hoped Regina hadn't put two protection spells. Gracie was relieved to find out she hadn't. They traveled through the underground tunnel in silence until they reached another trap door. It was over their heads, way out of Gracie's reach. However, Red was tall enough to reach it.

"This leads out to the room we practice
magic in," Gracie informed Red, "There usually aren't any guards in there."

Red nodded her head and slowly opened the small door. Light flooded in as Gracie's fireball extinguished. Red took a quick look around, nodded to Gracie which meant 'it's clear', and pulled herself out of the tunnel. Red's hand reached back down for Gracie. She jumped up and grabbed Red, who easily pulled the small child up.

"Follow me," Gracie whispered, "If you see a guard don't hesitate to take them down."

Gracie sprinted out of the room, and Red wondered for a second how such a young child had no fear. Gracie faced two guards as soon as she turned a corner, but before they could react she knocked them out with a quick motion of her hands. They fell to the floor, their breathing becoming even as they drifted off into a sleep.

"They'll wake up in a few hours," Gracie shrugged and carried on.

Red and Gracie sneaked through the castle side by side, watching each other's backs and avoiding guards. Red was amazed by how much Gracie reminded her of Snow. She felt like she was fighting next to her best friend again. Red hadn't realized for a second that Gracie stopped moving, She was too busy focused on what was infront of her. Red turned back around to see what was holding Gracie up. She was staring at the wall, a shocked look on her face. Although it wasn't a wall she was staring at. It was a mirror. And what was behind the mirror was what startled her.

"Gracie?" A familiar voice flooded the halls, "We need you to help us."

Red recognized it immediately. It was Snow. However the older girl knew the truth.

"Princess get us out of here." Charming appeared next to Snow, "Please."

Red spun Gracie around to look at her, "Don't listen to it Gracie. It's a trick, Regina's tricking you."

"No," Gracie turned back around, "No."

Her hand reached out for the glass, her parents faces looked pained.

"Gracie do whatever you have to to free us," Snow told her daughter, "You need to get us out of here."

Gracie's hand was an inch away from the glass when the image of her parents distorted, their faces rippling away from her.

"No!" She yelled, "Don't leave!"

The mirror continued to ripple and Gracie stared at it, hoping that her parents were about to join her in the hallway. The person that stepped out of the mirror was the last person she wanted to see.

"Hello Gracie," Regina's voice was as cold as ice, but Gracie heard a hint hurt in her voice, "I thought I raised you better than to fall for that."

Red pushed the child behind her and faced Regina, "Do not go near her or I sw-"

"Get lost wolf," Regina said with a flick of her wrist.

Red vanished leaving only Regina and Gracie.

"What'd you do to her?" Gracie yelled, "You better not have hurt her!"

"Don't worry my sweet child, she's where she belongs," Regina brushed a curl out of Gracie's face, "Which is out of my way."

Gracie pushed Regina's hand away, "What do you want from me?"

Regina smiled.

"It's not what I want. It's what I need."

A/N

I am so sorry I haven't written anything for a while! I just got out of school and my nephew was literally just born today so I was really busy getting ready for him. I'll try to update more now that I don't have to study for finals but now I have a baby to watch now so I'll try my best to write for you guys. Don't forget to vote and comment! I love reading your feedback.

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