SCENE: A mill in the kingdom of King Xavier in the Enchanted Forest. Past. The miller is fast asleep when his daughter approaches.
Cora: Father. Father! (Very reluctantly, her father wakes up.)
Father: What? I'm resting.
Cora: You're always resting. The flour was due to be delivered this morning. I, for one, would like to be able to eat this week. (She proceeds to deliver the flour.)
SCENE: The market, Enchanted Forest. Past. Cora crosses paths with King Xavier, his son, and a princess. For her own amusement, the princess trips the miller's daughter and flour falls everywhere.
Cora: You stupid, foolish girl!
King Xavier: What happened here?
Princess: Oh, the peasant fell... As they do.
King Xavier: Are you all right?
Cora: I'm fine!
King Xavier: Not you. Eva. Are you all right, Eva?
Princess Eva: Well, she ruined my slippers.
Prince Henry: I don't think the girl meant any harm.
King Xavier: You shall receive no money for the flour. And you will apologise to Eva.
Cora: Apologise? The wench tripped me.
King Xavier: Curb your tongue! This is Princess Eva from the Northern Kingdom. Our honoured guest. She's a very important woman.
Cora: She's a girl.
King Xavier: And who are you, miller's daughter? What's your name?
King Xavier: Then kneel, Cora. (Reluctantly, Cora does.) Now apologise. Apologise, or this will be the last bit of flour we will take from you. There are other millers out there.
Cora: (Gritting her teeth) I beg your pardon, Princess Eva.
King Xavier: Stay down until we have passed. You are where you belong.
SCENE: The sea, somewhere between New York City and Storybrooke. Present. Henry and Neal steer the Jolly Roger while belowdecks, Emma enters Mr. Gold's room, where he is groaning in pain.
Emma: You don't look comfortable.
Mr. Gold: The poison racing towards my heart will have that effect.
Emma: Tell me about this, uh... knife of yours. Cora and Regina, if they do have it, they can make you do anything?
Mr. Gold: Indeed.
Emma: Like, kill us all?
Mr. Gold: Yeah. You're hoping I bleed to death now, aren't you?
Emma: You're Henry's grandfather. We're family now. I'm gonna save you.
Mr. Gold: Oh, I feel so reassured.
SCENE: Storybrooke. Present. David is talking to Mary Margaret on his phone.
David: Hey, I just talked to Emma. It's a bad wound. She says it's poison. They can only cure it back here in Storybrooke. (The scene shifts the Regina's office, where Cora and Regina are listening in using a phone tap.) They're taking the ship home.
Mary Margaret: We'll let them know that they have the knife, okay? Who knows what that wicked woman would do. (Cora drops the phone tap.)
Cora: I don't like what that enchanted box was saying. I'm not... I'm not wicked.
Regina: It's not an enchanted box. It's a phone tap.
Cora: I don't care! What matters is they've been warned. Rumplestiltskin's smart, and now he has time to think.
Regina: But he's injured.
Cora: More than injured, I'd say. (She picks up the dagger, which now reads mplestltskin.) He's dying. When his name disappears, all of that power of his will just boil off into the air and then there will be no new Dark One.
Regina: Okay, so we have to use him to get Henry back before he dies.
Cora: Not in his condition. I don't wanna kill him faster. No, there are no other options. I have to stab him with this knife and take his power as my own. I have to become the Dark One. And with his power, there's nothing I won't be able to do.
Regina: But Henry's never going to forgive that. And the whole point of this is... Wait, what is the point of all this?
Cora: To protect our family.
Regina: Or you gaining your power?
Cora: Whatever power I gain is for us. To protect you. To protect Henry. If we lose this battle, we'll spend the rest of our short lives on our knees in front of them. And that, my love, is something I'll never do.
SCENE: The Enchanted Forest. Past. A masquerade ball ensues at King Xavier's Castle. Cora wears an expensive ball gown. She puts on a mask and places a rose into her hair. Then, Cora walks up to the prince.
Cora: Has the King really brought all these wealthy women here to vie to purchase his son? Hmm. Poor Prince Henry.
Prince Henry: You're very frank.
Cora: Well, I... Oh, my! You're him. You're the prince. I'm very, very... I'm a goose, aren't I?
Prince Henry: I don't know. Let's find out. Can a goose waltz? (They start dancing.)
Cora: But I wouldn't want to stand in the way of someone purchasing you.
Prince Henry: Then what are you doing here?
Cora: I just came for the free food. Exquisite mutton, by the way.
Prince Henry: Thank you.
King Xavier: Excuse me, my boy. May I cut in?
Prince Henry: Of course, Father.
Cora: Your Majesty. I didn't expect this honour.
King Xavier: Tis no honour. Did you think a stolen gown and pilfered mask would keep me from recognising you? There's straw on your dress. You carry the mill with you, miller's daughter.
Cora: You've got some nerve disparaging me, you're selling off your own flesh and blood.
King Xavier: You're an insolent girl. The kingdom has been strained by righteous wars, we need our gold, yes. We are still miles above your kind. So now go. There's nothing you can offer us other than errant strands of straw.
Cora: That is nothing but delusion.
King Xavier: What could you possibly have to offer us?
Cora: I can turn straw into gold and solve all your woes.
King Xavier: (Laughs.) Really?
Cora: (Music stops.) But, as you've insulted me, you shall not reap the benefits. Good luck whoring your son. (Cora leaves but the king grabs her by the arm, and drags her in front of the ballroom.)
King Xavier: My loyal subjects. We have a very special personage with us. This woman tells me that she can spin straw into gold! (Everyone laughes.) And she's going to demonstrate it for us! Fetch a spinning wheel.
Cora: It takes time to gather my thoughts.
King Xavier: Oh, I tell you what, my dear. Spend the night here, locked in a tower full of straw. Spin it into gold tomorrow, and you can marry the Prince. Fail, and you die.
SCENE: Storybrooke Harbor. Present. Emma, Neal, Mr. Gold and Henry arrive in Storybrooke. Ruby, David and Mary Margaret help Mr. Gold onto David's truck.
Mary Margaret: Are you okay?
Emma: Yeah. Yeah. We're all right.
Henry: Uh, I drove a ship.
David: Did you, now?
Henry: Yeah, my dad showed me how.
Neal: That's me.
Mr. Gold: Thank you. Thank you.
David: Is Cora trying to control you with the dagger?
Mr. Gold: Well, you'd know if she was, because most of you would be dead by now.
Mary Margaret: Well, then, we'll just have to take the fight to her before that can happen.
David: We will.
Mary Margaret: And this time, we finish it.
David: Mary Margaret...
Mary Margaret: David. She needs to be stopped. She needs to be killed. This is our family. We are going to protect it.
David: Of course we will. But what you're talking about goes beyond that.
Mary Margaret: Does it? Because she is the reason you've never met my mother.
David: I know. I know what happened to Queen Eva, and I have zero problem with Cora dying for it. But not by your hand. And not out of vengeance.
Mary Margaret: Why?
David: Because you wouldn't be able to live with yourself. You have the purest heart of anyone I have ever known. That's who you are. And that's who you're going to stay.
Emma: You okay?
Mr. Gold: Ah, I'm beginning to feel a bit stronger. Take me back to my shop. There's magic there can protect us.
Henry: Let me guess, I get to go with Ruby.
Emma: You got it, kid.
Ruby: I'll keep him out of the crossfire.
Mary Margaret: Thank you.
Henry: Don't look so worried. You'll stop Cora. You won't let her get away.
SCENE: The Enchanted Forest. Past. Cora is locked in the palace. She looks out the window and sees a moat.
Rumplestiltskin: (Giggles) That's never gonna work. I mean, you'll escape. But you'll be dead. Kind of defeats the purpose, doesn't it?
Cora: Who are you?
Rumplestiltskin: Who are you?
Rumplestiltskin: Not a very pretty name, is it? Sounds like something breaking.
Cora: How did you get in here? I you got in, I can get out.
Rumplestiltskin: If I understand your situation, (Points at the spinning wheel.) this is your way out. And what a marvellous coincidence that spinning straw into gold just so happens to be something that I like to do. Yeah, it's almost like... Like... Like... Like fate.
Cora: No one can spin straw into anything. And no one can make...
Rumplestiltskin: Oh, well, would you look at that?
Cora: (Cora sees the straw spun directly into gold.) You want to help me?
Rumplestiltskin: (Giggles) No, I want you to help me. And you will. Because the future is my gift. Well, in a manner of speaking.
Cora: What could you possibly get from me?
Rumplestiltskin: Funny you should ask. (Summons up a contract.) Can you read?
Cora: My firstborn child?
Rumplestiltskin: She is quite important.
Rumplestiltskin: Yes, I see the future, weren't you listening? Anyway, I only get my payment if you live past tomorrow.
Cora: You can turn all of this straw into gold by morning?
Rumplestiltskin: And you can parade in front of the royals and demand the hand of dimly-lit prince and have them kneel before you. That's what you want, eh? You want them to kneel...
Rumplestiltskin: I... No. What?
Cora: Teach me. Don't just do it. Teach me. Make it part of our deal.
Rumplestiltskin: (Giggles) You are a spicy one, aren't you? Oh, well. Rumplestiltskin.
Rumplestiltskin: My name. Do believe you just earned it. (He magically changes the contract.) Now, let's begin.
SCENE: Storybrooke. Present. Mr. Gold Pawnbroker & Antiquities Dealer, the back room.
Mr. Gold: Emma, did you find it?
Emma: Yeah, there's nothing in it. (Emma shakes the jar, something rattles.) What the hell? (Dips her hand into the jar she grabs something invisible.)
Mr. Gold: Invisible chalk. Use it in the front doorway. Draw a line. The rest of you? You might want to prepare for battle. (Everyone leaves.) Oh! Oh, wait, wait, please. Can you get me a warmer blanket? From the cabinet.
Mary Margaret: (Inside the cabinet, Mary Margaret sees the candle she could have used to save her mother's life. She grabs the candle.) Why do you have this?
Mr. Gold: For a rainy day.
SCENE: Storybrooke. Present. Mr. Gold's shop. Emma uses the invisible chalk to draw a line.
Neal: Missed a spot.
Emma: You're hilarious.
Neal: I didn't know you were magical.
Emma: Oh, my. Are you being judgy about this? 'Cause you're not allowed to have opinions about surprises, Mr Son-of-Rumplestiltskin.
Emma: What, "oh"?
Neal: I didn't mean for Tamara to be a surprise.
Emma: You think I care that a guy I dated a decade ago is engaged?
David: We're all clear outside. Everything okay? (Neal and Emma both nod their heads.)
SCENE: Storybrooke. Present. Mr. Gold's shop, the back room.
Mary Margaret: You're not getting any better, are you?
Mr. Gold: The candle can save me. There's nothing else.
Mary Margaret: I wouldn't use this to save my own mother. What makes you think I would use it for you?
Mr. Gold: Because you're all grown up now. And for once, our interests are aligned.
Mary Margaret: She dies instead of you.
Mr. Gold: I know you can do this. I know you want to do this.
Mary Margaret: There's no coming back from murder.
Mr. Gold: And there's no coming back from death either. And that's what will happen to your loved ones.
Mary Margaret: Even if I were to do this... the candle only works if you whisper the victim's name over them.
Mr. Gold: The heart will do.
Mary Margaret: Cora's heart. It's not in her body.
Mr. Gold: Use the candle, curse the heart, and then... here comes the tricky part.
Mary Margaret: That's not the tricky part?
Mr. Gold: You have to put the heart back inside Cora's body. She will die and I will live.
Mary Margaret: There is another way. I get Cora's heart. I control her and make her do the right thing, and I let you die. Takes care of two evils at once.
Mr. Gold: I was just imagining poor Henry's face when he finds out that you killed his grandpa.
Emma: I drew the invisible line. I think. What now? You cast a protection spell?
Mr. Gold: No, no. You're going to do that for me. I'm relying on you.
Emma: I can't cast a spell. I can spell "spell".
Mr. Gold: You can. It's in you.
Emma: How? Here? Like, from my brain?
Mr. Gold: Just try. (Emma closes her eyes to try.) Stop thinking! Conjuring magic is not an intellectual endeavour. It's emotion. You must ask yourself, "Why am I doing this? Who am I protecting?". Feel it. (Emma follows his instructions and a protection shield forms outside of the shop.) Oh, yeah. You feel it?
Emma: Yeah, I think I did.
Mr. Gold: Good girl. Very good girl.
SCENE: The Enchanted Forest. Past. In a tower of King Xavier's castle. Cora tries to spin the straw into gold, to no avail.
Cora: Ugh! It's not happening.
Rumplestiltskin: You just need to stop thinking about it. Magic is about emotion. Summon up that moment that made you so angry, you would have killed if you could.
Cora: You do that?
Rumplestiltskin: I do.
Cora: What's your moment?
Rumplestiltskin: Once, a man made me kiss his boots in front of my son. Now, in my mind, I go back and I rip out his throat, and I crunch his veins with my teeth, and that, dearie, is how magic is made.
Rumplestiltskin: I like the phrase. Let me help you.
Cora: They made me kneel. I didn't do anything wrong, but they made me apologise. To a child. I realised, no matter how good I was, or how hard I worked, I was never going to be more than I am now.
Rumplestiltskin: What do you want to do to them?
Cora: I want to make them bow. I want their kneecaps to crack and freeze on the stones. I want their necks to break from bending.
Cora: (Cora sees that the straw she has just spun turned into gold.) I did it! I'm going to live.
Rumplestiltskin: You're going to do much more than that, dearie. Don't stop until they are on their knees.
Cora: Let's keep going. (She continues to spin.)
SCENE: The Enchanted Forest. Past. King Xavier's castle. Cora spins straw into gold in front of the king. Rumplestiltskin, carefully covered in a cloak, looks anxiously with the other attendees.
Cora: Here. Here's your gold.
King Xavier: This... Did you really do it?
Cora: You saw it with your own eyes.
King Xavier: You're just a miller's daughter.
Cora: I am so much more.
King Xavier: You have earned him.
Prince Henry: Cora, if you will do me the honour of accepting my hand in marriage?
SCENE: Storybrooke. Present. Mr. Gold's shop. David looks through the window.
David: What's wrong? Did Gold tell you something?
Mary Margaret: No. I mean, he just said that Cora is determined to hurt us.
David: I won't let that happen. We'll do whatever needs to be done.
Mary Margaret: You're right. You're absolutely right.
David: (The ground begins to rumble.) It's them. Regina and Cora. They're here. (Cora and Regina stand outside the shop, and use their cumulative magic to break down the protection spell. They enter the shop.)
Emma: Regina, think about what you're doing.
Regina: Don't talk to me. (Mary Margaret manages to sneak out of the shop through the back door. Regina summons a fireball, and David manages to extinguish it with his sword. Regina uses her magic to cast David out of the shop, slamming the door behind him.)
Emma: David! (Emma strides towards the door, but is thwarted by Cora. Neal lunges forward with his sword, but Cora teleports away into purple smoke. Regina steps forward to choke Emma, and Cora reenters using purple smoke. Emma clutches a sharp object, and breaks free of Regina's grasp. She holds it against Regina's throat. The dagger of the Dark One lays on the floor between Neal and Cora.)
Neal: What's it gonna be?
Neal: Choose wisely. (Cora uses her magic to raise the dagger off the floor and into her hand. Emma shoves Regina into Cora, causing them to tumble into a glass display case.)
Emma: Fall back to Gold. I have the chalk!
Cora: Help me take out Rumplestiltskin and then we'll go back...
Regina: Mother, what is it?
Cora: My... my heart. It's with my things, in your vault. Someone's there.
Cora: Go! Go! (Regina leaves the shop.) Really, Rumple, hiding's beneath you. (Cora tries to penetrate the barrier by herself.)
SCENE: The Enchanted Forest. Past, one day before her marriage to Prince Henry. King Xavier's castle. Rumplestiltskin appears.
Rumplestiltskin: Enjoying the view as much as I am? (They kiss.)
Cora: How dare you! I'm a married woman.
Rumplestiltskin: Not yet. Wedding's tomorrow.
Cora: Hmm. Well, then it's all right.
Rumplestiltskin: Mmm. (They kiss again.) Love the dress.
Cora: Royal brides have to be snow white.
Rumplestiltskin: (giggles) Well, when you see the future, there is irony everywhere.
Cora: You know, I thought I wanted this. White and bright, all the admiration. But then I look at it. Fifth in line to be queen? That won't happen without an awful lot of bloodshed. And what you give me.
Rumplestiltskin: I can give you nothing but darkness and isolation.
Cora: And love.
Rumplestiltskin: Yeah. And love.
Cora: I want that.
Rumplestiltskin: What if I, um... What if I, uh... amended our contract? Instead of you owing me some random firstborn child, you owe me my child?
Cora: I can make that deal.
Rumplestiltskin: As can I.
Cora: Rumple, can we really do this? Can we really have this?
Rumplestiltskin: If you truly wish it.
Cora: There is one...
Cora: It's the King. He humiliated me. He made me feel the way you've shown me I never have to feel. I want to kill him. I want to show him his heart before I do it. So he can see it and know what I'm doing, as I crush it.
Rumplestiltskin: That is why I love you.
Cora: Show me.
Rumplestiltskin: I will show you everything.
Cora: Then I'll do it tonight.
Rumplestiltskin: Let's seal that promise. (They kiss.)
SCENE: Storybrooke. Present. Mary Margaret walks into Regina's vault. An assortment of boxes fills the space, and she begins looking for Cora's heart.
SCENE: Storybrooke. Present. Outside Mr. Gold's shop. David wakes up from being thrown out of the shop and knocked unconscious. Using his cell phone, he contacts Emma.
David: Are you safe?
Emma: For now. I've got the spell up in the back room.
David: Is Mary Margaret okay? (Mary Margaret is seen searching in Regina's vault.)
Emma: She's not with you?
David: No! Where the hell is she?
SCENE: Storybrooke. Present. Regina's vault. Mary Margaret finds Cora's heart. She lights the candle.
Mary Margaret: (whispers) Cora. Cora.
(She blows out the candle.)
SCENE: The Enchanted Forest. Past. King Xavier sits at his desk with piles of gold when Cora approaches him.
Cora: They told me I'd find you counting your treasure.
King Xavier: Well... You've made us a rich kingdom again. How can I help you?
Cora: I don't love your son.
King Xavier: I didn't expect you to. Not much there to love, frankly. But this is not about love. It's about alliances. Love is weakness. It isn't for hard women like you. That should make your choice easier.
Cora: My choice?
King Xavier: Run off with the evil imp you don't think anyone knows about, in the name of "love", or stand next to my son with a crown on your head and citizens at your feet.
Cora: If the choice is love or power, then even having a heart is a liability... (Cora touches Xavier's chest.) Don't you think? (She leaves the king's chambers holding a box with a human heart inside it.)
SCENE: Storybrooke. Present. Mr. Gold's shop. Cora clenches her fingers in an effort to disintegrate the magical barrier protecting Mr. Gold. Behind the barrier, Neal sees that the barrier is beginning to give way.
Neal: It's getting weaker. She's gonna get through.
Mr. Gold: Maybe it's for the best. At least this cursed power will pass from this world.
Neal: No. No, you're not dying.
Mr. Gold: I am dying. That much is certain. I need to talk to Belle. Emma, please.
Neal: Who's Belle?
Emma: Your dad's girlfriend.
Belle: (In the hospital, Belle answers the phone.) Mr. Gold, I... I told you before, I... I don't remember you.
Mr. Gold: I... I... I know, I know. It's just, uh... Sweetheart, I am dying.
Belle: Oh. I'm, uh... I'm... I'm so sorry.
Mr. Gold: I know that you're confused about who you are. So I'm going to tell you. You are a hero who helped your people. You're a beautiful woman who loved an ugly man. Really, really loved me. You find goodness in others, and when it's not there, you create it. You make me wanna go back. Back to the best version of me. That never happened before. So when you look in the mirror and you don't know who you are... That's who you are. (Belle and Mr. Gold both cry.) Thank you, Belle.
Neal: Didn't know you had that in you.
Mr. Gold: Oh, I am full of love. I've spent a lifetime looking for you. For a chance to say I love you. And I'm sorry.
Neal: I didn't think you would go back on our deal.
Mr. Gold: I just made the wrong choice. (Gold reaches his hand out to Neal.) May I?
Neal: I'm still angry.
Mr. Gold: I know. (Neal grabs his dad's hand.)
SCENE: Storybrooke. Present. Regina walks into her vault, turning around to find Mary Margaret holding a box with Cora's heart in it.
Regina: You have no right to be here. And you have no right to that!
Mary Margaret: I was going to give it to you.
Mary Margaret: She can't love you, you know. She doesn't have her heart. With it, maybe she can. That's why you've never felt she loved you. She doesn't have her heart. But I do.
Regina: You're doing this for me?
Mary Margaret: Think about it. What would happen if Cora had her heart back? Back inside her?
Regina: She told me she took it out to protect herself.
Mary Margaret: And did it work? The person she was before, do you think that person survived? She can't love, so she can't love you.
Regina: She always wanted the best for me. That's love.
Mary Margaret: Imagine real love. You'd have a mother, and a start on making a family Henry could be a part of. Or you could have her be the Dark One. The choice is yours.
SCENE: Enchanted Forest. Past. Standing near a tree, Rumplestiltskin waits for Cora's return. When she returns, she is carrying the box containing a human heart.
Rumplestiltskin: I was starting to grow concerned.
Cora: Well, here I am. (The two share a kiss.)
Rumplestiltskin: Something's not right.
Cora: Yes, you're correct.
Rumplestiltskin: What happened? Couldn't you take the King's heart?
Cora: No, I was able to do it. I chose not to.
Cora: I'm sorry, my dear Rumple. I'm not going with you. You see, I have a wedding to go to. My own.
Rumplestiltskin: Whose heart is in the box?
Cora: Don't make this harder...
Rumplestiltskin: You lied to me. Whose heart?
Cora: Mine. I had to. You told me not to let anything stop me until they're on their knees. My heart was stopping me.
Rumplestiltskin: You never loved me. Never! You're not getting away with this. We had a contract! I'll take your baby!
Cora: You changed the contract, Rumple. You only get your own child. And any baby I have, it won't be yours.
SCENE: Storybrooke. Present. Letters from Mr. Gold's dagger diminish one by one, and Cora continues to muster up magic to break apart the barrier spell. Meanwhile, outside Regina's vault, Mary Margaret sits outside in the graveyard, when David runs up to her. He finds her cradling her head in her hands.
David: Mary Margaret! Are you okay? Are you... What did you do?
Mary Margaret: You were right. This isn't me.
SCENE: Storybrooke. Present. Mr. Gold's shop. Cora finally manages to open the barrier and enter the backroom. Emma and Neal are armed and prepared to fight.
Cora: You two, out of the way. (Cora magically teleports Neal and Emma out of the room to the woods.)
Mr. Gold: A vision told me about you. Told me this day would come. But it didn't tell me everything. Didn't tell me what I really wanted to know.
Cora: And what's that?
Mr. Gold: Did you ever love me?
Cora: Why do you think I had to rip my own heart out? (Cora strokes Mr. Gold's face.) You were my weakness. You were the only man I ever truly loved. (Lifting the dagger, which now only has one letter left on it, she braces herself to stab Mr. Gold with it but instead jolts forward, dropping it. Standing behind her is Regina, who has just inserted her mother's heart. The two smile at each other.)
SCENE: Enchanted Forest. Past. Cora, King Xavier, and Henry stand before a crowd of people at the castle. Cora is holding her newborn in her arms.
King Xavier: Princess Cora. Please. Tell me, daughter, what's her name?
Cora: Her name is Regina. For, one day, she will be Queen. (Cora holds up baby Regina and the crowd before her kneels.)
SCENE: Storybrooke. Present. Mr. Gold's shop. Cora continues with her strange behaviour and begins to laugh. Confused, Mr. Gold checks the wound on his chest and discovers that it has completely healed over. Cora pauses and looks down, where she finds a hole has developed in her chest. Regina catches her as she collapses to the ground and she holds Cora in her arms.
Regina: Mother? Oh! (Mr. Gold retrieves his dagger from the floor.) Mother? What's wrong?
Cora: This would have been enough. You... You would have been enough. (Cora stops talking and her eyes shut.)
Regina: Mother? What's going on? Mother. Don't leave me, please. What am I going to do?
Mr. Gold: Your mother did you no favours.
Regina: Shut up! You stole her life! You cast some spell.
Mr. Gold: I did nothing.
Mary Margaret: (A frantic Mary Margaret rushes into the room with David trailing behind her.) Regina! Stop!
Regina: You did this.