Granny grows up in a cottage built by her six older brothers. During wolfstime when a dangerous wolf is stalking the village, her father and brothers attempt to murder the beast, however, the wolf kills all of them. Granny, after witnessing her father's death from the cottage rooftop, tumbles down and lands in her family's splattered blood, just in front of the wolf. The creature bites Granny on her forearm and, unknown to her at the time, afflicts her with a curse that causes her to shapeshift into a wolf during wolfstime. The wolf turns out to be the man Granny eventually marries and has a daughter named Anita with him. After Anita inherits the curse and has a daughter of her own, Granny disagrees with Anita's wish to bring up the child with knowledge of her wolf heritage. She steals the child from Anita and raises her on her own, while Anita disappears. As Granny grows older, her curse fades and she no longer has to shapeshift during wolfstime, however, she retains some wolf-like characteristics, such as her keen sense of smell. ("Red-Handed", "Child of the Moon")
In April during a year when Red is about five years old, Granny sees her being walked home from school by the blacksmith's son Peter. She meets the boy and sizes him up, but after determining he has no ulterior motives towards her granddaughter, she agrees to allow Peter to continue walking Red home. Eventually, Granny relents to Red's constant questions about her parents and fabricates a story about them. She tells Red that they died after a single arrow pierced both of their hearts when hunters mistook them for a wolf during wolfstime. In June in the same year, Red sees one of the village residents, Amos Slade, comes to sell flowers on their doorstep, but Granny insists she shouldn't open the door until he is gone. A dejected Amos leaves, but not without placing a whole bouquet on the doorstep for Granny. Granny pretends the flowers don't mean much to her, though Red can tell they do, hinting that her grandmother possibly has deeper feelings for Amos.
For a portion of Red's childhood, Granny often invites the village children over for shortbread cookies and reads them stories by the fireplace. On one such occasion, long after the other children have gone home, Granny tells Red a fairytale about a washerwoman who was cursed by a jealous queen and eventually got revenge by creating Lake Nostos.
One year during January after a blizzard has passed, Granny brings a ten-year-old Red with her to the blacksmith's house, where she barters with Peter's father for arrowheads while Red has a snowball fight with Peter. During February a year later, Granny bakes her famed gooseberry tarts for Red to bring as a picnic treat for Violet, Beatrice, and Florence. Upon her return, Red refrains from telling Granny that the girls were mean to her and expresses a desire to use a magic spell to gain friendship. Granny advises her not to because magic, even when used with good intentions, has a cost no one is ever prepared to make.
Although Granny has hopes the shapeshifting curse skipped a generation, she realizes Red has inherited it and she procures a red cloak from a wizard to stop the transformation when it is worn by the person with the affliction. On Red's thirteenth birthday in November, Granny gifts the cloak to Red, telling her to wear it always to repel wolves. Additionally, she puts a stop to Red's daily walks from home with Peter. That same year on a December morning, Granny comes into her granddaughter's room to wake her up and ask her to fetch some eggs. She notices Red has found a cross pendant that once belonged to Anita. Even Granny doesn't know where Anita got it from, however, she fastens it around Red's neck, telling her that her mother would've wanted her to have it.
About three years later, Granny wakes up one morning to find Red attempting to bake and decorate a cake for Peter's birthday. She speaks frankly about Red's poor baking skills and her somewhat low opinion of Peter, although she concedes that the cake will taste fine even though it looks terrible. To boost the sales of her baking goods, Granny sends Red to do some deliveries and to go door-to-door selling extras goods. When Red returns home, Granny casually tells her about a bowl of extra frosting she made which she has no use for. Red, realizing Granny made it for her, uses it to decorate Peter's cake. As the pair lock up for the night, Red pours cider for Granny and sneaks a dose of poppy dust in it, to put her grandmother asleep while she sneaks out to Peter's birthday party.
Upon awakening and finding Red gone from the cottage, Granny shows up at Peter's party to look for her. She chides some of the youngsters, including Violet, Beatrice, and Florence, for being out late when there are wolves lurking in the woods. They don't take her warnings seriously, in part due to Granny's infamous reputation in their village for her paranoia about the wolf pack becoming violent even when it is not wolfstime. Unable to locate her granddaughter, who, unbeknownst to her, is hiding nearby, Granny walks off, still groggy from the poppy dust. Peter offers to help her look for Red, but Granny leaves alone. Red rejoins her grandmother and takes her home. The next day, Granny receives a note from the schoolteacher Miss Cates asking for a batch of muffins. Her old scar from the wolf attack causes her mild pain, but when Red asks her about it, she shoos her away to fetch milk from Farmer Thompson.
The following morning, Granny sends Red to deliver the baked muffins to Miss Cates, however, Red discovers that Violet had written the note to purposely humiliate Granny. Undeterred, Red instead offers the muffins as samples for her classmates. Miss Cates likes the taste of Granny's muffins so much that she asks Red to have her grandmother bake her wedding cake. After allowing Red to continue onto the market by herself to buy supplies they need, Granny tries to persuade the villagers there that the upcoming Forget-Me-Not ball should not be held because it is during wolfstime. The crowd is unimpressed, and Granny eventually leaves after being hit by a cabbage from one of the onlookers. The morning after this, Red tells Granny about her encounter with a man named Hershel Worthington at the market who they owe taxes. Granny explains Hershel did come by the cottage days earlier but that he gave her an extension. The next evening, Granny's scar pain flares up again, causing Red to worry that her arm will keep her from baking. She checks up on Red, who awakens from a nightmare, before going back to bed. While Granny is asleep, Red makes cookies to fill her delivery basket, however, after letting them bake, she dozes off and only wakes up when Granny rushes in to put out a fire in the oven. Red succeeds in selling her burnt cookies as edible dog biscuits, which Granny approves of.
After baking and preparing goods for the next day's deliveries, Granny and Red have supper, during which Red notices Granny's scar is once again causing her pain. Red suggests she see Dr. Curtis for a salve, but Granny dismissively states nothing would work unless it is a magic one. Later that night while Granny is asleep on the sofa, Red discovers from looking at the old note from the wizard who gave her grandmother the red cloak that it was written using bilberries, and forms a plan to find the wizard to get a magic cure to heal Granny. The next day, Red pretends to go to school before taking a detour to track down the wizard. Violet, who sees Red skipping class, goes with Beatrice and Florence to visit Granny under the fake pretense of asking after a sick Red. When Red returns home, her grandmother demands to know where she has been sneaking off to. Red feebly admits she was picking bilberries with a boy, to which Granny brings up rumors she heard about her running around with boys. Granny questions other things, like how long Red takes on deliveries or how she managed to afford what they needed from the market, with the implication being Red is trading her body for rewards. She cautions Red not to go down the same path as her mother Anita, but these accusations only upset Red, who declares she is done being her grandmother's delivery girl and intends to leave the village for good. Shortly after, the tax collector, Hershel, shows up with an order from the king telling them to vacate their cottage within three days since they are unable to pay their taxes. After Hershel leaves, Granny retreats to another room to cry and blames herself for the situation while Red rushes after Hershel to figure out a solution.
Whether a last-ditch attempt to make enough baked goods to save the cottage or a poor attempt to cope with reality, Granny is in a daze in the kitchen with her apron skewed and stacks of food everywhere when Red returns. Her granddaughter says she convinced Hershel to clear their debt, and only then Granny sees Red's cross pendant is missing, meaning she forfeited it to the man as payment. Granny apologizes for the awful things she said to Red earlier, stating that she feels responsible for not being able to protect Anita and Red's likeness to Anita makes her afraid she cannot protect her too. This leads her to reveal more about the night Red's parents died, during which Anita's husband snapped the pendant off Anita's neck, leading an upset Anita to run into the woods where her husband followed and they were tragically killed by hunters. It's because of this, Granny explains, that she feels so protective of Red as she is all she has left. In the morning, Granny is alerted by Red about their dead chickens in the coop which the wolf killed. Red ponders if they were the wolf's final meal since she put out dog biscuits laced with rat poison last night, but Granny shows her the wolf's enormous paw prints as an example of why a mere poisoned biscuit would do nothing to stop it.
Without Granny knowing, Red follows the pawprints and discovers Amos Slade dead from a wolf attack. Granny is shocked and distraught by the news, and when Red asks if she had a secret romance with him, Granny denies it before sending Red off to do basket deliveries. Later, Granny and Red attend an emergency town meeting that Mayor Filbert called to discuss the wolf problem. Mayor Filbert asks for all willing men to join the hunting party tonight, however, Granny calls the townspeople a bunch of idiots and warns the Forget-Me-Not ball will only give the wolf the chance for more fresh prey. Red suggests moving the ball to a safer time, which the mayor agrees with and reschedules in order to keep the townspeople from further harm.
With Granny fast asleep at home, Red hears someone scream and goes to investigate, eventually saving Violet from the wolf by killing it. She, Violet, and Peter return to the cottage where Granny, having just woken up, welcomes them in. After a crowd of villagers including the mayor arrives to pay tribute to Red for her bravery, Granny hands out muffins to them. She opens the door to let in Violet's father and the rest of the hunting party, and Violet's father reveals that they went to the wolf's body only to find no body anywhere. Granny and Red then lock eyes as they and everyone else hear the distant howl of the wolf, seemingly hinting the wolf was only incapacitated by Red earlier but didn't die.
For the last ingredient needed for the salve to cure Granny's scar pain, Knubbin requires a drop of water from Lake Nostos, a place Red has only ever heard of in a fairytale story Granny told her. Red enlists Peter's help to track down the location, though it's not known if they ever find it.
During another wolfstime, Granny and Red lock up their cottage for the night as protection against the prowling wolf. Mayor Tomkins arrives to announce a hunting party is going after the wolf because the beast recently ate some of the villagers' sheep. Red expresses interest in tagging along, but her grandmother forbids it. Granny insists to the mayor that it would be better to let the wolf be until wolfstime is over in two nights. After the men are gone, Red goes to bed while Granny arms herself with a loaded crossbow and stays awake to guard the door in case the wolf comes, despite knowing that the wolf is actually Red. A woman named Mary, actually the runaway princess Snow White, ends up staying with Granny and Red in their cottage. Following the discovery of the hunting party's mangled corpses, Granny attends a town meeting where Mayor Tomkins vows to finish off the wolf for good to ensure another massacre does not happen. Granny, once again, tries to dissuade him and the other villagers from going against the wolf. As proof none of them stand a chance against the creature, she recalls how her father and brothers were murdered by a wolf many years ago and how close she herself came to death when it bit her. ("Red-Handed")
On the night Mayor Tomkins leads another hunting party in search of the wolf, Granny goes to check up on Red in her room, only to find Mary wearing the cloak and pretending to be Red. Mary explains how she and Red discovered Peter is the wolf and that Red tied him up to prevent him from hurting anyone after he shapeshifts, however, Granny knows the truth and grows worried for Peter. While Granny is tracking Red by smell, she reveals to Mary about the origins of the wolf curse and how Red inherited it from her. They reach the clearing, where they discover wolf Red eating Peter's carcass. Granny shoots her with a silver-tipped arrow, which immobilizes Red long enough for Mary to cover her with the cloak, forcing Red to revert to human form. Red, while still in shock after learning the wolf was her all along, is urged by Granny to flee before the hunting party arrives. Mary escapes with her as Granny stays behind. ("Red-Handed")
One day, Granny is among the crowd in a village when the Evil Queen approaches in search of Snow White. The Queen threatens the people; willing for information on her enemy's whereabouts, but no one speaks up. Geppetto asserts to the Queen that they are good people and don't deserve to suffer, to which she exposes a prisoner of hers that will face execution for being loyal to Snow White. ("Snow Drifts")
Granny and Red are reunited when they assist Snow White in staging an attack on King George's castle in an attempt to rescue Prince Charming. The rescue attempt is a failure as the Evil Queen already took Prince Charming from King George. The Evil Queen requests Snow White come to a certain place for a parley, which she agrees to. Granny, Red Riding Hood and the seven dwarves are unsure about Snow White going alone to meet the Evil Queen, but she goes anyway. Red gets a bad feeling about it, and eventually, they all go to find Snow White and discover her lifeless body. ("An Apple Red as Blood")
After King George's forces fall, the Evil Queen is captured. Granny is at a war council meeting to discuss her fate, which they decide will be death as punishment. She watches the arrival of the Queen on the gallows and listens as she delivers her last testament. As the execution is being carried out, a remorseful Snow White changes her mind and puts a stop to it. ("The Cricket Game")
While Snow is heavily pregnant, she makes a wish to help her unborn daughter Emma have a happy ending, which the Blue Fairy grants by causing everyone to sing. The next morning, Granny is at home knitting a baby blanket for Emma as she sings longingly about the soon-to-be arrival of the royal princess and how hopeful the future is looking. By the following day, everyone forgets that they ever sang, as the Blue Fairy intended it to be this way to ensure all the songs stay safe for Emma, who will need them one day to face an enemy. ("The Song in Your Heart")
Sometime later, she sits on Prince Charming's war council to strategize before the arrival of the Dark Curse
where she continues knitting the baby blanket. With the information Prince Charming and Snow White received from Rumplestiltskin
, they know their child is the savior who will save them in twenty-eight years time. The Blue Fairy comes to tell the war council of one way to fight the curse, which is carving a magic wardrobe
out of the last enchanted tree in the Enchanted Forest
, sending Snow White through to another land
unaffected by the curse and giving birth there to wait out twenty-eight years. On the day the Evil Queen casts the curse, Granny and the rest of the Enchanted Forest inhabitants are engulfed by it and taken to another land. ("Pilot")