46 | Method Acting

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Rumplestiltskin was silent for a moment as he thought. "It's the Curse of the Empty-Hearted," he realized.

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"And what the hell does that do?" Emma Swan demanded once everyone met up in the apartment again.

"In theory, it has the power to make someone love you," Rumplestiltskin explained.

"Doesn't that break... magic laws?" Emma stammered. "You can't bring someone back to life, you can't force someone to love you."

"Yeah, but this particular spell can make someone think that they love you," Rumplestiltskin confirmed. "And if you're as desperate for love as Regina appears to be, you might just believe it."

"She's gonna use it on me, isn't she?" Henry's voice called out as he walked down the stairs.

David immediately went to his side. "Hey, buddy, why don't you go back upstairs?" he suggested. "Let us handle this."

"No!" Henry argued, pushing David back and running toward his mother. "Emma, you said you were gonna be honest with me. Now, why is Regina using this curse?"

Emma opened her mouth, but Rumplestiltskin beat her to whatever she was going to say. "Because it's the only way she can get everything she wants, that she can get you," Rumplestiltskin explained.

"But if she wants me..."

"Your mother is a complicated woman," Rumplestiltskin added on. "She wants your love, of course, but she also wants vengeance on Mary Margaret."

"How does the curse give her both?" Indiana wondered.

"Because the last ingredient she needs to ignite the curse is the heart of the person she hates the most," Rumplestiltskin told her.

Emma's eyes widened. "You have to stop her," the blonde said.

Rumplestiltskin scoffed. "No, I don't have to do anything," Rumplestiltskin counteracted. "On the contrary, I believe warning you fulfills my debt."

"Not even close! This is my wife's life we're talking about!" David argued.

"Not to mention your grandson's!" Emma mentioned.

"Well, wars have costs," Rumplestiltskin pointed out.

"Nice," Emma sarcastically complimented.

"Well, this is a blood feud, dearie—one that goes back a very, very long time," Rumplestiltskin said. "And the only way you could end a blood feud is by the spilling of more blood. That is the only way I know to eliminate your Regina problem."

"By what, killing her?" David snapped.

Upon hearing this, Henry looked up at his mom. "Is there no other option?" Emma asked.

"I'm afraid not," Rumplestiltskin confirmed.

"Stop!" Henry yelled, walking forward. "Listen to yourselves. You're talking about killing my mom. You used to be heroes! What happened to you?"

As Henry ran off, Emma called out, "Henry!" She walked toward the door as he ran down the hall. She began to pull her coat on. "No matter how this plays out, we need to keep him as far away from it as possible."

Then, Emma left to run after Henry. "She's right," Indiana admitted for the second time that day. "Cora was dangerous because she was without heart. Regina's more dangerous because she actually has one."

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1983
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