TWICE CURSED

Author's Note: I have decided to do a sction I like to call "Previously on Twice Cursed" to help us all remember what happened last, since it is taking me longer to update. Tell me if you like it or not, because if no one finds it useful, I won't do it, but if you guys find it helpful, I'll continue to use it.

...

Previously on Twice Cursed:

Mr. Black was even more ruthless than Gold had ever been, in the Enchanted Forest or otherwise. Several years ago, he had evicted many families from their apartments in the middle of a harsh winter, for no reason except that a child who lived in those buildings had talked to him. Apparently, he'd gotten away with it, and no one had seen the families again. It was assumed that they had died from the harsh cold.

Regina sighed as David shook his head. Once they had reached the safety of her house, she'd made him stare at the sword again, hoping he just hadn't been studying it closely enough. Unfortunately, she'd been wrong. She'd watched him closely, and he'd been looking at it with all the interest necessary, but he still didn't have his memories back.

All he saw was a slip of paper at his feet. He picked it up. It said, "protecting his family." Henry turned it over, wondering if there was something on the other side, but there wasn't. "What could it mean?" he wondered aloud.

So, without leaving so much as a note, Henry snuck out of the house, ready to complete a mission and be an even bigger part of Operation Cobra. However, he didn't notice the man who was silently following him, waiting for the perfect moment to strike.


Henry followed the path through the woods, and once he reached the meeting spot, he waited. He was a little early, after all. A few minutes later, someone else entered the small clearing, and the boy's face lit up. "Archie!" he yelled, before running over and embraced his psychiatrist. The man hugged him back.

"Henry, how have you been?" he asked. Henry let go then, but he was beaming.

"Absolutely wonderful! Mom is standing up to Mr. Black, and we've started a resistance! There's only five of us so far, but I'm sure we'll keep growing."

"Henry, that's amazing," Dr. Hopper said.

"Yeah, I bet she'll want to help you guys. She's been really busy, and hasn't let me tell her about you and everyone else yet, but I'm sure we'll join forces and fight Black together."

"That would be great," Archie admitted. "But, Henry, I'm glad you and your mother are getting along better now."

"Yeah, me too. I never realized how awesome she was until lately. I don't think I need to talk to you much today, but I wanted to tell you about the resistance. Oh yeah, we named it Operation Cobra."

"Operation Cobra. That's an interesting name. I like it." Archie was smiling, excited that someone was standing up to Mr. Black and Henry was getting along with his mother.

"I thought of it," Henry declared proudly. Then, Archie realized that if Henry was in a resistance, Black would probably want to catch the boy.

"Henry, now that you're fighting Black, I don't think it's safe for you to be out here alone. You should get back home, before he realizes you left."

"Okay, you're probably right. Anyway, next time I come, I'll bring Mom and maybe some of the other members. I won't come alone again."

"Luckily, once is all it takes." Archie and Henry turned around, to see Mr. Black standing there, looking menacing as always. "Dr. Hopper, I'm surprised you survived the harsh winter you were evicted during. And from your conversation, I assume you weren't the only one to make it through."

Archie, not knowing how to respond to him, simply said nothing. "And Henry, I thought your mother would've taught you better. You shouldn't sneak around alone at night. You might accidently get hurt."

On his last word, he did some sort of flourish with his hand. Then, he looked down at it in shock, surprised. "Perhaps she taught you more than I thought." Apparently, the witch had given him a protection spell. No matter. He could take on a child and a weak forest dweller without magic.

He started to advance, but then they started to back up. He sighed, wishing his quarry would just stand and fight. "I really didn't want to have to use this," he said, pulling out a gun. They both froze, and he smiled triumphantly. This land had very few advantages, but this weapon was one of them.

As he advanced toward them, Dr. Hopper stepped protectively in front of Henry. He didn't want the lad to be hurt, and he had a feeling that was exactly what was going to happen. Not only was Black cruel, but he also seemed to be going crazy, judging by his hand flourish and Black thinking it should have done something. Letting him near Henry would be a very bad idea.

Black walked closer until he was inches from Hopper's face. "Move aside so I can get the boy," he said, pointing the gun strait at Archie's head. The psychiatrist swallowed, forcing himself to do the right thing. "No."

He heard his ribs crack as Black landed a punch on his chest. Archie doubled over from the pain, and Black strode past him, grabbing Henry's arm but keeping the gun pointed at Archie. "Being a hero is slightly overrated, Dr. Hopper. It can end in death," Black threatened. The psychiatrist went several shades paler than normal.

"If you kill him, I'm not going to tell you anything my mother's planning!" Henry yelled. It was the only solution he could think of to try and save the man's life.

Black thought about it, realizing the fastest way to answers was the best way, and if the boy would talk to save the psychiatrist, then he should use that advantage. Besides, he could always kill both of them once he obtained all the information he needed. "Well then, Dr. Hopper, I guess today's your lucky day. You get to live. Now come on, walk that way," he said, using his hand to indicate the direction he wanted them to travel in.

Archie limped ahead of them, one hand hovering over his injury and the other stretched out to catch himself when he stumbled. Black kept a firm hold on Henry's arm, his grip so firm that Henry knew escape wasn't an option. However, he could leave a clue for anyone trying to find them. He dropped the practice sword, and Black didn't even notice it fall onto the forest floor. Hopefully, someone would find it, and come to rescue them, because otherwise, things probably weren't going to go well for them.

They were forced into a basement, and then Black slammed the door closed, leaving Henry and Archie alone in the dark. "Are you alright?" Henry asked. He'd been worried about the psychiatrist ever since he'd been hit, but now was really the first opportunity he had to make sure Archie was okay.

"I'll be fine," he said, which Henry knew meant that he was in a lot of pain, but didn't want him to worry.

"We need to get out of here, before he makes me spill all of Operation Cobra's secrets." Henry started walking around the room, using his hands to search for a way out since his eyes would do him no good in the darkness.

"Henry, I'm not sure escape is an option," Archie said, not wanting the boy to get his hopes up.

"In the stories, heroes always find a way to escape, and we're heroes."

"Life doesn't always work the way a story does," Archie said, but Henry ignored him. "We need to make a plan B, just in case."

Henry supposed that Dr. Hopper did have a point. It couldn't hurt to have a backup. "Sure, do you have one?"

"Yes. Lie to him. Tell him things that seem like they could be true, but that will mislead him. That way, we won't be punished, and we won't hurt the resistance."

"Alright, sounds good," Henry agreed, before continuing to look for an exit. Archie just had to be wrong; there was a way out and Henry would find it. Dr. Hopper listened to him walk around, and tried not to sigh. He knew this was most likely to end terribly for them, and that Henry's efforts were most likely futile. As much that he hoped that wasn't the case, he knew that it was, but there was nothing he could do to change the situation, or Henry's mindset, so he lay there listening to the boy's footsteps before drifting off into a nightmare-filled slumber.

Henry had been searching for an hour, by his calculations, so it was probably a lot less time than that; but he'd found nothing. There was no way to escape, and nothing he could use to pick the lock. Which meant that they'd have to implement plan B until someone came to rescue them. He hoped that was soon, because the more time they took, the more time Black would have to get information out of him, and verify if the he was telling the truth. And if Black found out that he was lying to him, Henry had a feeling that it would end terribly.

So, Henry decided to follow Archie's example and get some shut-eye, so that when the time came, he'd be ready to escape.

David woke up, and seeing that it was still three in the morning, decided to go back to sleep. But, for some reason, his search for rest alluded him, and he stared at the wall for about 15 minutes before deciding to get up. He obviously wasn't going to get any more sleep that night. Soon, he was in the kitchen, sipping a cup of water and wondering what in the world he was going to do for the several hours before anyone else was up. Sword fighting would be good, but it was hard to practice without someone to help him. David supposed he could try to learn more about the world, but he didn't know where any books were, and it would be a waste of time once he regained his memories.

Other than that, David had no ideas of what to do. He moved to go sit in the study, where he could at least be comfortable while he contemplated his options. David walked by the practice sword and entered sword? There were supposed to be two wooden swords, right? But when he turned around to double check, there was only one. Regina and David had left their swords next to each other, so that meant that someone else had moved it. But who?

Well, it couldn't have been Gold, because he shared a room with David, and the early riser knew that he was still asleep. That left Henry, Belle, and Regina. David walked upstairs, and quietly opened the door to Henry's room. Sure enough, the boy was gone, and had most likely left the house, and taken the sword along to defend himself. David went back downstairs, and grabbed his real sword before leaving the house. He needed to find Henry before the boy landed himself in trouble.

Mr. Nolan was so focused on his goal that he had a lapse in judgment. He should have told someone what was going on, so they could help him. But that thought didn't even occur to him as he wandered through the forest, hoping to stumble upon Henry.

Henry and Archie woke up to the sound of the door being slammed against the wall. They both jumped, and prepared for Black to enter and start asking Henry important questions. However, after what seemed like ages of waiting without anyone showing up, Henry walked over to the doorway and looked out into the hallway. "The cost is clear," he told Archie. "Let's go."

"Henry, are you sure this isn't a trap?" Archie asked. It didn't make sense for Black to just let them go. Maybe he was hoping they'd lead him to something, or was just playing games with them.

"Pretty sure. I think we are being rescued, by the same guy that saved me from Sheriff Swan," Henry guessed, and started walking down the hall. Archie followed, agreeing that this was the best course of action, but still wary.

"It could be, Henry, but we still have to stay on our toes."

"Don't worry, I know Black could show up at any second," the boy reassured him as they rounded the corner, and went up the flight of stairs leading up to freedom. "I'm always on alert," he said reassuringly as he flung the trapdoor open, and helped Archie out of the hidden basement in the pawnshop. As soon as Henry closed it, Black entered the room from the front of the shop.

It was only Black's shock that gave Henry and Archie the head start they needed. The duo flung open the side door and ran out into the night, Henry trying to support his injured friend as much as he could. Instead of Black following them out, Sheriff Swan and Deputy Jones ran out after them. Both were very athletic, and it was only a matter of time before they caught up with them, and brought them back to face Black's wrath.

Belle was shaken awake by Regina, and was going to complain about it, until she saw the look of desperation on the other woman's face. "What is it?" she asked, sitting upright and looking at the Queen.

"Henry and David are missing. We think they went into the forest, but we have no idea why."

"Right, give me two minutes, and I'll be down."

Regina went back downstairs, and almost immediately started pacing. Gold watched, wanting to comfort her, but not sure how. That, plus his fear of getting punished if he said something wrong, led to his silence.

By the time Belle got there, which only took a couple of minutes, Gold was rather impressed that the carpet didn't have a permanent indentation where she'd been walking. "Alright, what's the plan?" Belle asked, getting right to the point.

"We are going to search the forest until we find a sign of them. Gold's going to stay here, and call us if they return while we're gone."

"Sounds good," Belle agreed. Regina grabbed her cell phone, and soon the two of them were racing through the forest. "So, do you have a spell that can locate them?"

"No. I'm tracking them," Regina said, looking terrified for her son but determined to find him.

Magic would have been quicker, but Belle supposed tracking would work just fine. Anyway, it was better than crashing through the forest at random, hoping to run into them by chance.

David, after running through the forest for several hours, picking his direction just by intuition, started to think that he needed a better plan. He slowed down, to think of a more effective way to find the boy, when he heard a scream. Throwing all caution to the wind, as he'd done simply by leaving the house that morning, David sprinted toward the noise.

Emma and Killian had caught up with them in the forest, and now Emma was holding Henry while Killian was restraining Archie. Henry had tried fiercely to escape, safe in the knowledge that Emma wasn't going to shoot him. She was too good for that. Unfortunately, she didn't seem to mind hurting him, and had twisted his arm behind his back, enough to hurt, a lot, but not enough to cause any real damage.

Satisfied with Henry's compliance, she cuffed his hands behind his back, just as her deputy did the same to the psychiatrist that had supposedly died in the harsh winter years ago. She had been shocked to discover that he was alive, and was disappointed that he had been associating with Henry, and thus Regina. If Emma hadn't had to capture him, she would have asked him for a therapy session. Emma hauled the boy to his feel, preparing to take him back to Black. However, before she could even take a step, something slammed into her, hard, and she went sprawling onto the ground.

David grinned, satisfied with his results; he was lying on top of the sheriff, and the deputy was pinned to a tree with David's sword piercing through his jacket. All in all, he considered his attack very successful. That was, until Emma kneed him in the stomach, forcing him off her. Soon, they were both on their feet, glaring at each other.

Emma moved to get Henry, hoping the man wouldn't attack her if he thought the boy's well-being was at stake.

David stepped in front of the punch meant for Henry, willing to protect the boy at any cost. Emma's rather soft punch collided with his stomach. Obviously, she hadn't wanted to hurt Henry that much. However, that wasn't the only thing that hit him. Memories entered his brain, all at once, and there was no way he could keep them all straight.

However, by the time Emma was rearing up for another punch, he was aware enough to grab her arm and flip around behind her, putting her in the same hold she'd used on Henry. Charming had no idea what was going on, but judging by everyone's behavior, he suspected that Belle and Regina were the only ones who remembered their real lives.

"That was awesome!" Henry exclaimed, bringing David back to the present. He grabbed the keys off Emma's belt, and tossed them to Henry, who managed to catch them even though his hands were behind him.

"Get yourself free, and then go help Archie."

"You remember!" Henry exclaimed, realizing that was the only way David could possibly know who Dr. Hopper was.

"Yeah, I got my memories back just now, while stopping Emma from hurting you."

"That's what that meant!" Henry realized, freeing himself and walking over to undo Archie's handcuffs.

"What are you talking about?" David asked, having no idea where his grandson was coming from.

"I can't say now, not when the enemy can overhear us," Henry reminded him as he freed Archie's handcuffs.

"Now, we better get you home before anything else happens," David asserted, before hitting Emma hard on the head, sending her unconscious and lowering her to the ground. He hated hurting his own daughter, but it was the only way he could be sure that they wouldn't be followed. It was much easier for him to render Killian unconscious, and after retrieving his sword, Charming walked over and supported Archie on their way back to the house.

When the tracks had split, Regina and Belle had followed Henry's, more concerned about a young boy being out alone than a trained swordmaster. Soon, they'd found a spot where Henry's tracks joined with two others, and then, they found the sword.

"Black must have captured him," Regina said as she picked up the wooden sword off the ground. "I'm going to kill him! He'll regret ever trying to stand up to me! And Henry! How dare he leave like that!"

"Regina, calm down! This won't help Henry!" Belle yelled, trying to calm the angry sorcerous down.

"You're right." Regina said, looking at the sword in her hand. "We need to stay focused."

"Yes, and you're terrible at that." Both women turned around to face the new threat, feeling terrible for not noticing the stranger sooner. They faced their attacker. Regina's mouth fell open and Belle let in a gasp of shock. For the threat was the last person they had expected to find.

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