Author's Note: I do not own Once Upon a Time. I hope you enjoy, and if you think I need to improve on something, let me know! I want to be an author someday, so constructive criticism is welcomed. Also, Gold and an evil OC will also be main characters, but I didn't have enough room to add them.

Regina woke up, and got ready for the day. She was going to see Robin and Roland today, and she couldn't wait. She got dressed and went downstairs, to see Henry, sitting at the table eating a piece of toast.

"Henry?" she asked, shocked that he was at her house without a Charming in sight.

"What, Mom?" he asked, like it was absolutely normal for him to be there.

"Aren't you supposed to be " before Regina could say 'with Emma,' Henry interrupted her.

"Yeah, yeah, I know Mom," he said, picking up his backpack and leaving his half eaten breakfast on the dining table. "I'm on my way to school right now." With that, he ran out the door before Regina had a chance to say anything.

Henry must have lost his memory somehow, she thought. Regina walked over to her phone to call Gold. He would have the ingredients she needed to make a potion that would jog Henry's memories. He picked up on the third ring.

"Hello, this is the pawnshop," he said.

"Gold, this is Regina."

"Madam Mayor, you wanted to talk to me, and not my boss?" It was definitely Gold on the phone, but he sounded different, quieter and almost like he was scared of her. He must have lost his memories as well, and the only thing she could think to explain the loss of his and her son's memories was another curse. That was the only thing that made sense, seeing as Emma hadn't barged in demanding that Regina give back her son, and Robin hadn't come over yet.

"Yes, I am going to come by the shop later this afternoon, probably around 3. I wanted to make sure you'd be there."

"Yes, I'll be here, but Mr. Black won't. Is that alright?" Mr. Black? Who could that be? Obviously, he was Gold's boss, and he was probably the one who had cast the curse, since she had never heard of him, or if she had, she didn't know him by Mr. Black. But, who was he really, and why would he want to cast a curse on the town that left only Regina's memories intact?

"Yes, you're the one I want to talk to," she informed him.

"Alright, Madam Mayor, I'll be here," he informed her nervously.

"You better be," she said before hanging up. She assumed that everyone thought of her the same way they did in the first curse, and she needed to act accordingly, even if Gold would be furious with her once he regained his memories.

She decided she should head to her office, since that was what she usually did every morning. She grabbed her purse and a piece of toast that was in the toaster before heading out the door.

She was rather surprised when she entered her office and saw Sidney Glass standing there, waiting for her to arrive. She had locked him up in the insane asylum under the hospital after the situation with Katherine, and had never expected to see him again. Yet, now he stood in her office as if he'd never left. No doubt, it was another part of this confusing curse.

"What do you want, Sidney?" she asked the reporter.

"I'm here to give you a report on Henry." So, she had Glass watching Henry? Why, was he in some sort of trouble? She felt her heart pound in her chest as she worried about her son.

"Sorry, I forgot that was today. Proceed." Glass nodded.

"He still doesn't like you," the reporter said candidly, and Regina felt as if she had been stabbed with a knife. Of course Henry didn't like her, she had been controlling and overbearing, but she had hoped things would be different this time. "So far, I have seen no sign of him trying to run away again. So, everything is normal for now."

So, Henry had tried to run away before. She must have been so mean to him, in whatever false memories were implanted in his head. She resolved to change his mind about her by treating him better and being the better person she'd promised him she'd be, even if he didn't remember the promise.

"Unless you have something else to tell me, we're done here. You may leave." She walked past him to her desk, and sat down behind it.

"I'll let you know if anything changes," Sidney promised as he walked out the door.

As soon as he was gone, Regina jumped up and walked over to her filing cabnent, where she had kept information on everyone in Storybrooke. Sure enough, the files were still there, but with some changes. Graham didn't have a file, since he was dead before the curse was cast. Gold's file was much different than before, describing him as cowardly and not a threat to her. His boss, Mr. Black, seemed to be the one she needed to worry about.

Judging by his file, 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 now knew she was up against a very dangerous man, if the file filled with fake events was to be trusted. Either way, she would have to keep an eye on Mr. Black.

Moving on from him, she noticed that both Emma and Killian had a file. Apparently, Emma was still the sheriff. However, she was meeker and more easily manipulated than she used to be. Killian, besides being the deputy, seemed to be the same rascal he always was. She scanned the file for Robin, or a new name that could be him, but she found nothing. She hoped he was alright, and that nothing had happened to him. Maybe he had just escaped the curse, and was trying to find a way to break it.

Just then, her stomach growled, and she looked up at the clock, wondering if it was a reasonable hour to go get lunch. It was 2:50! She had spent much longer than she thought going through all the files and trying to understand the curse. It was already time to go to the pawnshop and discover exactly what had happened to Mr. Gold.

She was walking out of the building, convincing herself she could wait to eat until she had talked with Gold, when she saw someone. He slipped around the corner a split second after she spotted him. Wanting to know who it was, Regina followed him, but when she reached the corner to look, he was gone. She should have been able to catch another glimpse of him, unless he knew she had spotted him and wanted to run away from her, which made no sense. Unless he was Mr. Black. Maybe the man who owned most of the town didn't want her to know what he looked like. That made about as much sense as the rest of the day had, so she decided to assume that for now.

When she got to the pawnshop, she noticed that the sign said "Mr. Black's Pawnshop." So, he really and truly had taken Mr. Gold's position in the town. After pausing for a second to look at the sign, she walked into the shop. Mr. Gold stood up straighter when she entered, and his eyes filled with fear. However, Regina didn't notice his reaction, because she was too busy staring at his clothes.

Gold's fancy suit was gone, replaced with a slightly baggy tee shirt and a pair of jeans. He also wore tennis shoes instead of dress shoes, and his cane was a rough, wooden walking stick instead of the elegant black cane with a gold handle. He'd really changed, and there was almost nothing about him that reminded her of the Rumplestiltskin she knew over the years.

"Madam Mayor, how may I help you?" he asked, voice wavering. That's when she noticed that he looked terrified, and that there was a security camera over the door. She couldn't get the ingredients without Black finding out it was her, but she couldn't just leave. It would be very suspicious to just come and go like that, and Black would discover, if he didn't already know, that she was aware that they were under a curse.

"Mr. Gold, I'm here to offer you a job," she informed him, since she couldn't think of any other reason why she would want to talk to him without his boss present. Besides, she wanted as many assets under her thumb instead of her enemies, and she had no doubt that even in this cowardly state, Gold was a huge asset. "I am in need of a secretary, and I would like for it to be you."

He seemed stunned. "Me, your secretary?" he asked.

"Yes, you. Do you see anyone else in the room?" she replied shortly. He shook his head no, before thinking more about what she had just said.

"You want someone who can't read to be your secretary?" Now it was Regina's turn to be shocked. Gold couldn't read? Obviously, this curse had been cast mainly to harm him, and might have nothing to do with the rest of the town.

"Yes," she said, trying to cover up quickly. "Then you won't be able to read the confidential information in the documents you sort. You just need to match patterns to know which file each document goes in."

He nodded, and then a grin started to spread across his face. "I accept!"

Apparently, Black was a terrible boss, for him to want to switch over to her so quickly, without even knowing what all she would ask of him. Then, Gold's look of excitement turned to terror, and Regina knew she hadn't caused it, so she turned around.

There stood a man who Regina could only assume was Mr. Black. He was wearing a suit, just like Gold always had, but that was where the similarities ended. He was muscular and tall. His pitch black hair was cut short, and his grey eyes bored straight into Regina's soul. Then again, Gold's eyes had done that, so maybe they were more similar that she had originally thought.

"Madam Mayor, how can I help you?" he questioned coldly. His voice was powerful and loud, commanding like Gold's, but lacking the subtlety.

"Oh, I'm sorry Mr. Black, but you can't," she informed her knew rival, before turning to her old one. "My new employee and I were just leaving." Taking the hint, Gold quickly moved from behind the counter and followed her out the door.

"And what makes you think I'll let you quit?" Black yelled, and Gold froze up right in front of the door. Regina brushed past him back into the shop, until she was standing right in front of Black. She had to tilt her head up to look him in the eye, but she didn't let that deter her in the least.

"Mr. Black, if you have a problem with Mr. Gold working for me, then maybe you should have thought about that when you were yelling at him or lowering his salary, or whatever else you did that made you a terrible boss. It's too late now, he's mine, so why don't you let me and my employee leave your establishment!" Regina had no idea why she was standing up for Gold, except that she was trying to be a better person for Henry and she really hated this new guy. Apparently, those were good enough reasons.

"I'll make you pay for this! Both of you!" he yelled after them.

I'd like to see you try, Regina thought to herself as she walked confidently down the road back to her office. Several shops later, she noticed her new employee was visibly shaking with fear.

"Don't worry, I won't let him hurt you while you're working for me," she told the Dark One.

He looked so relieved that it was almost unbearable. "Thank you," he said, and it was obvious he meant it from the bottom of his heart.

"It's just because injured employees don't perform as well," and because Henry would want me to be nice.

He nodded, but still had a huge smile of relief on his face. "Knock off that smile! It looks ridiculous on you!" she ordered. He nodded, and the smile fell off his face, much to Regina's relief. Gold looked downright creepy when he smiled with sincerity, seeing as she had never seen him do that before.

Once they got to the office, Regina showed him where his desk was and how to organize the documents, and sure enough, he picked it up fairly easily. By the time she was done explaining, it was four, and she really wanted to get home to spend time with Henry. She locked her office, and handed him her spare key to the building.

"Work for at least another hour, and lock up when you're done." That was when she realized she hadn't even thought about his salary, or the other factors, like how long she expected him to work. "We'll talk more about your job in the morning," she informed him, and then left for home.

This time, she slammed on her breaks to avoid hitting him. The person from earlier dashed in front of her, and disappeared into alley. He wasn't Mr. Black. He wasn't nearly tall or broad enough. However, she had no idea who he was. Now she had another suspect for who cast the curse; the mysterious man she only caught glimpses of.

Soon, she had pulled into her driveway and was walking into the house. She beamed when she saw Henry, and reminded herself that she had to prove to him that she was a nice person.

"Hello, Henry, how was school?" she asked, walking over to the dining room table where he was working on homework.

"Fine." Henry continued to work on his math problems.

"Well, I'm glad you had a good day." Henry looked up at her, taken off guard by his mother sounding like she actually cared about him. "Well, I'm going to make dinner. Did you want to help?" she asked hopefully.

"Sorry, homework," he told her, and continued working until his mom went into the kitchen. Once she was gone, he stopped to think. His mother, actually being nice to him! This was awesome! He hoped it continued, because maybe if it did, he would be brave enough to ask her for the favor. Just maybe.

Regina lay in bed, mind whirling. She really couldn't figure out this whole mystery by herself, no matter how much she wanted to. She needed help, from someone who also had their true memories. But there was no one who

She groaned as the realization hit her. Both Charming and Belle had neither the cursed memories nor the real ones. It would be relatively easy to jog their real memories; she didn't need a potion to do that. All she needed to do was enchant an object that was important to them and they would remember. And, since this new curse hadn't taken away magic (she could still feel it coursing through her veins), that would be simple.

So now, the question was, would Belle and Charming really be that much help? The Dark One's girlfriend and the Prince might not want to go as far as it took to get things back to normal. They might stand in her way instead of being the help she desperately needed.

However, she decided to give them their real memories. She needed extra eyes and brains to figure this out, since she was busy with her mayoral duties. Even if they would complicate some matters, they would vastly simplify others. She needed all the help she could get. Soon, Regina drifted off to sleep, dreaming of Charming and Belle annoying her to no end.

Author's Note: If you liked this, you should check out my other story, Kidnapped. It's a modern day AU where Bae and Belle get kidnapped and Gold tries to find them. It has many other characters besides those three, but they are the main ones. If this sounds interesting, check it out. Hope you enjoyed it!

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