I’m literally sitting here watching everyone go through the stages of grief and it would be funny if it wasn’t depressing.
I’m literally sitting here watching everyone go through the stages of grief and it would be funny if it wasn’t depressing.
I’m now going to hide from the internet and write some In the Darkness.
Let’s be honest I’m going to keep hitting refresh on tumblr, but I’m going to try and also write.
only thinking of all the OQ missing year fics
SO I feel a tiny bit better now but not much.
Do the writers even understand the massive uprising they’ll have on their hands if they play with Regina too much? She’s better now, she’s no Evil Queen, and you better not make her one.
DOES “SOMEONE” MEAN EMMA OR MARIAN
IF REGINA TRIES TO GET RID OF MARIAN I2G
A&E I HATE YOU
Regina trying to get rid of Marian might actually be unforgivable. They better not go there. Argh. I’m scared now.
There you go haters.
THERE IS A DIFFERENCE BETWEEN TRUE LOVE AND SOUL MATES. TRUE LOVE IS HONEST/PURE LOVE SOUL MATE IS THE ONE PERSON YOU ARE MEANT TO LOVE.
Prayer circle that everyone at ComicCon behaves themselves, does not put the cast into any uncomfortable situations, does not insight shipwars, and generally has themselves a good time, whether they’re attending, actually part of the panel, or sitting at home fangirling.
And that everyone remembers that however much it matters to you, the characters are FICTIONAL and the actors are REAL so take a good second to think about who deserves your respect more.
Ugh I accidentally hit unfollow on my phone about 5 times a day
I love that you asked for the end of The Storm, because quite frankly for the beginning of the The Storm, I would have had to have said “I wanted to get to the part at the end.” lol No, really, I would have gone into more detail, I suppose, but this story came out of the visual I had of this moment with them at the end, and built up around that. So kudos for picking that part for commentary.
Also, this is more than the last 500 words, just because otherwise it would have picked up in a weird part of the conversation. So. It’s 700 or so.
She’s not hard to find, she’s barely made it half a block, and he watches as her shoulders shake, and knows she’s in tears, and he’s the cause. She’s teetering, unsteady, and he jogs until he can reach out and grab her arm, spin her toward him. Her face simply wrecks him.
I had to have him follow her out of the diner, because I think it’s been made very clear on the show that Robin’s feeling for Regina are very strong and very real, and I don’t think that goes away just because Marian is back. His reaction to seeing her is a gut reaction - he thought she was dead, and now she’s there, and of course he goes to her, of course he embraces her, how could he not? But it’s clearly something that will hurt Regina, and he can’t let her run off, hurt, and not follow. Because he cared very deeply for her, and Robin’s not the type of guy who can overlook the pain of someone he cares for.
She’s crumpled into tears, her cheeks wet, eyes red, and when she looks at him it’s with a wellspring of pain equal to - no, far surpassing - the radiant happiness she’d been emanating this afternoon (and was it only this afternoon?). He wants to say something to her, wants to wipe all the sadness away, but Marian is back, and she’s real and alive and warm, and this isn’t a dream, he realizes. It is a nightmare.
Robin, in this whole piece, is sort of acting on instinct - he’s still in the moment, he’s not really thinking - he hasn’t had time. But this is really the moment where he realizes what has happened - what Marian’s return means. He knows how much what they has means to Regina, especially after her confessions that afternoon, and he realizes that Marian being there means Regina is going to get her heart broken - and it’s clear that she assumes before he even says anything to her, before he’s even so much as looked at her and followed, that this thing she never thought she’d have again is gone. I have this sort of headcanon for Robin that he wants to be the person who doesn’t cause her pain, so I think for him, realizing what it means that Marian is back is horrifying. It means that not only will he hurt her, he will absolutely break her heart. And at the worst possible time - right after she’s told him that they are destined, and he has accepted it, and they have really embraced their love. So that’s the moment where everything sort of starts to catch up with him..what’s really happening here.
Because Regina is standing in front of him, a mess of pain, and all he can find to say is, “She’s my wife.”
"I know," Regina chokes, steadying herself with hands fisting into his shirtfront, his palms cupping her elbows.
"She’s Roland’s mother." It sounds horrible, how can he be saying this to her, there has to be more he can say to her, but Marian is here, and he cannot walk away, and Regina is going to pay the price for it, and it seems horribly unfair that she should look at him one hour and tell him that they’re fated and then be gutted so unceremoniously the next, and even worse that he should be the one forced to wield the knife.
Robin is The Good Guy. He tries very hard to do the right thing, whenever possible - even if it’s the unconventional thing (like trying to talk the “evil queen” out of using a sleeping curse on herself when he has no real reason to care for her or to think she’s someone worth saving, considering her reputation for destruction). And I really think that Robin being the good guy is going to be his downfall in this whole Regina-Robin-Marian triangle at the beginning of season 4. He’s a good man, he does the right thing, and whatever he may feel for Regina, he’s made vows. Marian is his wife, and Roland’s mother, and Robin takes those things very seriously, and feels obligated to honor them (and of course, he loves Marian, but in a sort of quiet, settled, part-of-his-past way). But he’s also very aware of what he means to Regina, and being the good man to Marian means not being that to Regina.
And speaking of Regina - she knows, she knows as soon as she sees them in the diner what that means, that she is going to be left. So she really has nothing else to say to him here. She knows. She knows what he’s going to choose. She probably has some much more self-loathing reasons for why she thinks he makes that choice (because who would choose someone as awful as Regina when they could have someone as wonderful as Marian?), but she knows at the end of the finale what has just happened and he hasn’t even so much as looked at her yet.
She tells him again, weakly, that she knows, and it’s all so bleak and horrible, and Robin wants more than anything to split himself in two, and send one Robin off with Marian to live happily and raise their child, and send the other off with Regina, to spend every day making her smile, and laugh, and kissing her incredible mouth. But he cannot do that, so here he stands, grasping at her like she’s about to disappear, and he supposes she is, because he cannot have her and Marian both, and it feels like being tugged apart at the joints with the wrongness of all this.
Again, I really think Robin wants to have things both ways and knows he can’t. Ideally, he wouldn’t hurt either of them. He would be there to help Marian adjust to this new world, and to be a family with Roland, and he would be there to make Regina smile that way she did in front of that fire, and be her second chance, and cover her with more love than she can stand. But he can’t have that. He wants it so badly, though - to be the good guy for both of them.
"I have to-"
"I KNOW," she bellows, interrupting him, her voice raw and ripped open, full of every unfair thing she feels, and he expects her to step away from him, but she just grips his wrist, hard, and he realizes with a jolt that underneath her pressing fingers is a tattoo that is supposed to mean he is hers, and he is leaving her, and he hates it.
She knows, dude. Stop making excuses. lol But this whole exchange - him trying to explain, and her telling him over and over that she knows - was the impetus for this fic. It was the first thing that came to me. She doesn’t need him to tell her the reasons, she knows. They’re over, and she knows, and he can’t fix it.
And also, that tattoo. He’s supposed to be hers, they’re destined to love each other, and he’s dumping her. And she doesn’t have to say it, because they’re both thinking it - and just in case they’re not, she’s going to hold on to that thing that represents what they could have had for one more moment. And make sure he knows.
It cannot end like this, he cannot leave her in this maelstrom of pain, he cannot walk away until he has found some way to calm her. So Robin just steps closer, lifts his hands into her hair and clutches, drops their foreheads together and holds her tight. For the last time, he realizes, and he’s surprised at the misery he feels at that, considering Marian is yards away and he had wished for her for so many years. But Regina is here, and warm, and alive as well, and he feels like he’s killing her, like he’s putting her through hell, and all he’s wanted is to be her second chance.
This is unfair.
This is cruel.
Robin, from the beginning I feel, even back in the Forest, has really felt for Regina. He’s drawn to her, he wants to comfort her, and even now, even when he’s the cause of her pain, that doesn’t go away. He still wants to comfort her, he still can’t walk away from her if she’s in agony.
There’s no good here for Robin - he is losing, too. He may be gaining his wife back, but he’s losing Regina, and he loves Regina. He surely has a long list of all the things about her that he loves, that he was looking forward to enjoying every day - her smile, her kiss, the way her hair feels in his hands, her perfume, her laugh, everything. And they’re breaking up - and not because they want to. Because they have to. He doesn’t feel like he has a choice here, they are being ripped apart, and it hurts him, too. It’s unfair. Half an hour ago, they were so happy, and he knew what the future looked like for them - it was holding hands, and ice cream, and Henry spending nights with them at the mansion, and the boys being brothers, and Robin and Regina going to sleep together and waking up together and making love. And all of that is gone, now - and it’s a loss for him, too. I really wanted that sense that Robin realizes this is the last time he will touch her - and these two are so physical, that’s huge, he touches her all the time (and I think that’s big for Regina, too, because not many people touch her, but Robin does often once they’re together - and not really with intent, just because he wants to be in contact with her. I don’t think she’s had much of that, ever).
He has to walk away, but he cannot while she is in this much pain, and he cannot without kissing her one last time, and it’s a traitorous thought now that he’s suddenly found himself married again, but he does it anyway. He tells her he’s sorry, so sorry, and crushes his mouth to hers, and pours every ounce of affection and every ounce of regret into her mouth. She kisses him back, and he tries to memorize the taste of her, the brilliant way she kisses, the smell of her skin and her hair. He tries to take all of her in, but then she sobs against his mouth and breaks away, and the devastated look she gives him makes him feel lower than the circles of hell.
This is really selfish of Robin, I feel. lol It really is. It just hurts her. But there’s something to knowing you’re doing something for the last time, and their last kiss was so casual, and so full of promise and joy, and they had a million more kisses in their future, so it didn’t have to be memorable. And now they’re collapsing, and he wants to remember her, he wants to memorize the way she kisses him, he wants to kiss her one last time like he means it, and like it’s the last time. And she probably wants that, too, but she can’t have him. He’s just giving her another taste of what she is losing - he is dangling the carrot in front of her with both of them knowing she will not be allowed to bite. It’s mean. Of course she cries, of course she does. He’s kissing her, and he never will again. It’s heartbreaking for her.
And then she’s simply gone, and he’s left holding a cloud of purple smoke and then nothing but air.
Robin feels gutted, and raw, and for a minute all he can do is stand there and stare at the space where she’d been.
Regina’s had about as much as she can handle of this. She was already crying when he got to her, nothing about what he says to her can make her feel any better, she just needs to get the hell out of there and have a good cry and maybe break all the dishes in her kitchen. And I wanted him to lose her just as suddenly as she’s lost him. One minute, he’s kissing her, and clutching her, and then she’s smoke in his hands. Gone. Over. And there’s just this void where she should be.
He has to go back inside, has to return to Marian, he knows. But he needs a moment.
Again, he’s torn between his obligation to Marian, and his feelings for Regina. But for this beat, it’s about him. He needs a minute. He is not unaffected by this, he cannot just waltz back inside and pick up where they left off.
When he’d lost his wife, he’d imagined a million ways in which some benevolent gift of fate might return her to him. In his wildest imaginings, he never dreamed it would cause such pain.
Those fucking writers, you guys. They give us Robin talking about how he’d have walked through hell to get Marian back, and then THEY GIVE HER BACK. And you know when he was still in the midst of his grief, he thought of all the ways he could have saved her, and he had some drunken, delirious night where he thought maybe magic could bring her back, maybe there was some way, some quest, some God he could wish to that would return her to him, and finally he’d had to accept it and move on. And now he has, and now she’s back, at the worst time. And it’s awful. She’s a bomb dropped into his life, and Regina’s, and Roland’s, and everyone who will be affected by this. There is no way for him to be the good man for everyone, there is nothing he can do that doesn’t cause incredible pain for multiple people. Marian is back, and it is a disaster.
Fun fact about The Storm, though: it is so-named, in part, because it was never for sure going to be a one-shot. I was going to do a season 4 fix-it fic and continue from the finale, and this was going to be chapter one. But then it seemed like EVERYONE was writing some version of that, and it felt a bit like sensory overload, and so I didn’t. But The Storm was a reference to Elsa, and the unseasonal winter that was about to descend upon Storybrooke. It worked as a title for a one-shot OR a series, and I wasn’t sure when I posted it which it would be.
And now you’ve made me sad again.
DVD-style commentary on Robin’s flashback scenes in Chapter 8 of In the Darkness. I’m going to go ahead and throw this one under the cut because the text itself is pretty long and I don’t want to dominate dashes.
Bold Is my commentary italics or plain is the text.
The first episode of OUAT that I watched was “Heart of Darkness” (found it on hulu). The first live episode I watched was “The Stable Boy” and I just fell in love with Regina and her complexity. I gave up a little during S2 because really? with how they treated her then, but I always knew that if they started to write a real redemption arc for her I’d be obsessed. S3 and OQ drew me back in, and Regina has basically taken over my life.
Running commentary on the nightmare.
So two main things went into this First, I wrote a nightmare about Robin for Regina pre-finale (this turned into a one-shot which you can read here. I felt it would be an interesting situation for them, for Regina to have a nightmare, and Robin to be in bed with her and interrupt it. Naturally to me, Regina would have had nightmares for much of her life about the night her mother murdered Daniel, and I thought it might be interesting to give her the same nightmare, adapted for Robin. She might initially have some deep-seated fear that someone might hurt him, but what she truly fears is that she will, that he will decide she is too dark, too evil, and leave her just as Daniel left her. This turned into a nightmare of her mother at the stables about to kill Robin just as she had killed Daniel, and then taunting Regina that she didn’t need to because Robin would leave anyway. In the original version of this nightmare, Robin is in bed with her and so proves Cora wrong because he does the exact opposite of what she’d suggested; he wraps Regina in his arms and stays.
Second, I have this weird impulse (others probably do too) when I watch favorite characters going through some pain or difficulty in their past, before someone was around to help them through it, and I just really want the person from their future to appear now and embrace them and fix it. I generally have this response to “First Star to the Right” and “And Straight On Til Morning” because Regina’s tortured and Snow cares but we got about .5 seconds of putting a towel to her forehead and that was it, and I just want Robin to go back in time and take care of her and make all that pain in her eyes better. The closest thing that can happen to this would be Regina telling Robin about the torture, which I didn’t think she’d really volunteer without prompting, which is why I gave her a scar that he could notice, a reminder of her humanity and physical vulnerability, and a reason she would have that push to tell Robin about it because while she may not volunteer the info, she wouldn’t lie to him.
At the end of that conversation, she asks him what he thinks of such odd characters being fated, and he answers that they’re just people, not an “Evil Queen” and “Prince of Thieves” but Robin and Regina.
So that’s all the background for that scene. Now to the actually in-text commentary.
Her eyes blink open, and she feels restraints pinning her to a hard table, metal cold and firm on her wrists, ankles, and stomach. “Tell me!” a voice beside her yells, and she looks for its source. “What did my family do to you? Why did you have to destroy our happiness?” He fastens the pads to her forehead, her neck, her wrists with harsh shoves.
The strongest sense I had for the opening was to show the destruction of the way Regina and Robin relate to each other physically, and especially the way he touches her. He’s always so gentle and tender, and I imagined him cradling her face in A Curious Thing with her in that red dress and let it crumble into her on the table in 2x21 in that red shirt and the way she fears he might touch her now.
He leans down until his face is beside her ear, smirking, taunting. “Too weak to stop me, Your Majesty?” He pulls back, his voice mocking.”A common thief, and the Great and Terrible Evil Queen is helpless.”
This was meant to be a direct reference to their conversation in bed, to show that she has lost what little faith she had in the way he saw her as more than her title, to show that she thinks he now sees her as the Evil Queen. I also wanted to take Robin-like details like his smirk and make them terrifying to her when they had once secretly drawn her to him.
She thinks of raising her magic to protect herself, but she cannot. There is not enough hate for him in her veins, no hate for him, to power the ashes of her dark magic. And the light magic, the white, blinding, blistering light magic recoils at the idea of hurting him because it comes from love, and it will not harm a part of her own soul.
I wanted this to capture the way Regina has been trapped between good and evil, not quite either one, and also to drive home how desperately she loves him and feels drawn and tethered and grounded by him, her soulmate. She could not hate him for what he’s doing because he has lowered the walls of hate she’s put around her heart and because she thinks she deserves every bit of it. (“Just punishment”) She cannot harm him now because she is different, she has changed.
"You can’t attack me, can you?" he concludes, searching her eyes, not at all like he used to before, not kindly, but with revulsion in his gaze. "Ah, does the Evil Queen still have feelings for me? Isn’t that precious!"
And again, I wanted him searching her eyes in an echo of the hallway scene from 3x19 but completely overturned and wrong. I wanted to have her dreaming (fearing/imagining) that he would know her feelings were genuine (because she has been terribly, horrifyingly open with him in the past few weeks) and that he would mock her for them, because in her eyes her feelings are laughable, she’s dark and evil and she cannot love.
And she will not cry, she will not cry, she will not show weakness, but her heart, it has shattered into fragments, and she loves him still. Last time, she had told Greg Mendel to kill her, and she had meant it. He had been justified to do what he did, more than she ever had been to chase Snow.
A reaction to the weakness she feels after what he has said. She is completely incapable of allowing herself to break down when someone taunts her like that.
This time, the small corner of her mind still burning with the hopes of her girlhood whispers he might still care enough to stop, because she doesn’t want to die.
This was meant to be (really, it was) the hopeful note of this scene. Regina has changed since the actual torture scene, and she does feel less self-destructive because, even though it all fell apart, she has changed, and Robin has been good to her, for long enough that she still wants to live. It was also supposed to be a little hint (just a little one) of how she would ultimately react to her sacrifice in Ch 7/8 (that she would do it, because she was too afraid to voice her fear and her desire to live, and she didn’t think she deserved to, but that she would ultimately be incredibly glad to be alive, as she always has been in the end on the show).
"Let’s see how you like it, then, shall we," he says, his voice now quiet and menacing.
He turns a dial up, presses a red button. She starts as the pain licks at her spine.
I wanted a moment of will he stop? to happen here.
"Not enough, then." He rolls up his sleeves, the ink of the tattoo harsh against his skin in the sickly yellow light, mocking her even more than his words, and he turns the dial as far as it will go.
The tattoo is my way of having Regina remember what, in her mind, he could have been to her if she had not been such a terrible person, and so the tattoo to her mocks her life, her decisions, taunts her for how she chose wrong, how she was always fated to choose wrong and love him and hurt him and lose him.
The worst pain she has ever felt rips through her. She feels her back arch off the table, her neck bent at an unnatural angle, the veins protruding out of her pallid skin, and she screams.
And then I just wanted pain, the pain of considering that Regina could even have a nightmare that Robin might do this to her. He never, ever would, that much must be clear from what we’ve seen on the show, and the idea that Regina could imagine it says a lot about how worthless and lonely she feels. She is human, clearly, the electricity harms her skin and veins and she cannot stop herself from screaming, and so she is no monster, no Evil Queen, she is a person and, as Tinkerbell said in Ch 8, he destroyed her.
It’s more…consistent than I often think it is. My writing on my best days and on my worst days appears more similar to others than it does to me. This is good when I feel like I have bad writing days, and sort of sad for me when I think something went particularly well and nobody else has that sense.
So you guys should ask for the commentary on a 500 word ish section of my writing; that would be so fun for me to do. If you just give me the chapter or scene or whatever I’ll find the text for you and I’ll give you a DVD extras style running commentary on the scene or section.