Author’s Note: This is written with great respect, love and gratitude for the talents of Robert Carlyle, Emilie de Ravin, and everyone involved in of Once Upon A Time. I do not own these characters, nor do I own the songs mentioned in this story.
Saturday morning, Izzy-B’s mind reels thinking about the events of the prior night. She is surprised and relieved that Randall did not bolt after seeing what a complete wreck she can be. It feels amazing to have someone want to be with her, even when she is coming unglued…she does not have to pretend with him. By the time she had returned home that night the knowledge that she had fallen in love with him twisted inside her terrifyingly. She always felt that terrible things happened as a result of love, yet how could she not love him…beyond the superficial trappings of the voice, dimples, puppy dog eyes, and a behind that made her mind wonder places that it best not go, he is smart, funny, sweet, passionate and he genuinely cares for her. Hell, he turned her down when she threw herself at him, knowing that she was acting out of fear. What was she thinking? she wonders, yet she knows, “Let’s get it over with and not worry about it anymore.” She chastises herself for the imbecilic thought, as though they would have sex, then he would not want to do it again after that. She wonders, “What is wrong with me?!? I love him, but I can’t tell him. I want him, but I don’t want to have sex, yet I keep having those thoughts about him. I’m thirty years old for crying out loud!…I should want to have sex. I’m not sixteen anymore!”
She feels so incredibly conflicted on the subject, unable to get passed the nagging question, “What if it’s like last time?” He is the only man that she has ever wanted, in that way, yet she is absolutely ambivalent about wanting him. She knows that Randall is different from a lot of men and treats her with respect. However, Friday night before going their separate ways, when he asked have another ‘proper date’ (their third date) over the weekend, she scrambled to concoct the need to clean and organize his shop instead. She loves his shop, and it feels like home for some reason. That said, though the place is a organizational disaster, in this case, it just serves quite well to avoid the pressure of the third date.
Much of Saturday and Sunday is spent cleaning and organizing Mr. Gold’s Pawn shop, because Izzy-B decrees that the shop is not in a suitable state for conducting business. Though he disagrees with her assessment, Randall acquiesces because it is an opportunity to spend time together. As they work together in his pawn shop, he thinks, “God, I love that delightfully mad, control freak!”
Sunday, afternoon October 23, 2011, ten year old Henry Mills is on a bus en route to Boston, on a mission to bring his birth mother, Emma Swan, to Storybrooke. At the same time, strolling to Tony’s Restaurant to get a pizza to go, Izzy-B is dressed in cleaning appropriate clothing; sneakers, blue jeans and a gray sweat shirt, while Randall is in his typical business attire. He smirks says, “I had the most interesting dream last night.” Seeing that he has Izzy-B’s full attention, he continues, “I dreamed that a beautiful, wet, nude woman was laying on me.”
Halting, putting her hands on her hips, she says in a haughty tone, “I was not nude. I had a robe on.”
Leaning smugly on his cane, he teases, “I didn’t say I was dreaming about you.”
Her jaw drops, and before he can move away, she pinches his arm, saying “Hey, watch it! I lay claim to all of you, including your dreams.”
With a satisfied chuckle, he say, “Possessive one, eh? I didn’t say I wasn’t dreaming about you either.”
He holds his tongue about the other dream that he had; being intimate with Izzy-B in a cave. He remembers being amazed and grateful to be with her. However, it was a peculiar thing to dream of doing that in a cave, of all places, but once they are in a carnal relationship, he may tell her about it; not that he has any intention of cavorting in a cave. He has no interest in chancing a bear walking in on them while they are indisposed.
Randall is pulled from his dream filled thoughts, as he hears Izzy-B exclaim, “Oh crap!”, and she takes off running across the street, without regard for oncoming traffic. A girl with dark blonde hair is perched precariously in a large birch tree.
Upon Izzy-B reaching the tree, the girl calls out, “Bunny and I are stuck.”
As Izzy-B spies the animal in question; a cat, and as she gingerly begins to climb the tree to reach the girl and the feline, she cannot help thinking, “Really?…a cat named Bunny?”
Randall arrives at the tree with his heart clenching in concern, viewing Izzy-B determined to reach the girl and the cat. The bark of the tree scrapes her skin, as Izzy-B says, “It’s okay, sweetie. We’ll get you and Bunny down.”, then calling down to Randall, “Can you grab that cat if I hand Bunny down to you?”
Worriedly, he says, “Yes, just please be careful, sweetheart.”
Izzy-B asserts, “I’m fine. Just stay close for the pass off.”
Reaching to the large branch on which the girl with dark eyes is straddling while clinging to her pet, in a calming tone, Izzy-B says, “What’s your name, sweetie?”
Nervously she answers, “I’m Paige.”
“Okay, Paige, can you scoot your kitty a little closer to me?…and then I’ll hand Bunny to Mr. Gold. He’ll keep Bunny safe while I get you, okay?”
Uncertain, but without any other options, Paige practically peels the cat from her chest, pushing Bunny within reach of Izzy-B. Izzy-B tries not to react as the cat digs its needle-like claws into her arm. Knowing dropping the cat to Randall would not be optimal for keeping Paige or Randal calm, she maneuvers herself lower on the tree in order for Randall to easily reach the frightened pet. As the gray and white cat is securely in his arms, snagging his expensive suit, both Randall and Izzy-B are alerted to a cracking sound and a whimper from Paige. Izzy-B quickly twists her body to sit on the branch beneath Paige, as she says to Randall, “Quick, put the cat down and grab her.”, then to Paige, “Grab my hands and let go with your legs.” The child obeys and squeals as Izzy-B flips her around, holding her by her hands within reach of Randall, as Izzy-B hangs upside-down with only her bent knees holding her onto the branch.
Randal grabs Paige protectively by the waist with his left arm saying, “I gotcha, lass.”
Izzy-B attempts to pull herself upright on the branch, as Randall gently places Paige on the ground. Terror strikes his heart as he looks up hearing another crack with Izzy-B still upside-down. Dropping his cane, he grabs her arms, and she lets go of the branch, hoping for the best. Izzy-B propels her legs downward to minimize the impact on Randall. Though she lands somewhat on her feet, they both lose their balance landing in a heap on the ground, with sore rears, but no serious injuries.
Both looking at each other in a bit of a daze, Izzy-B says, “Thank you. I didn’t relish hitting the ground head first.” Wordlessly, he abandons his typical public composure and just wraps his arms around her gratefully and sighs.
After several seconds, Paige, who is now cradling Bunny in her arms, stammers, “Tha…Thank you, both. I…I’m sorry. I didn’t mean to cause any trouble.”
Randall who does not wish to frighten the child, but does not appreciate his Belle being put in danger, says with a slight edge to his voice, “Perhaps next time, you should let your cat climb down in its own good time. A wee lass like yourself shouldn’t risk injury, trying to stop an animal from what it is predisposed to do. If Bunny was in the mood for a good climb, I’m sure she could have figured out how to get back down.”
Paige clarifies, “But she didn’t climb up there for fun. Dursley chased her.”
Randall asks, “Who’s Dursley?”
Haltingly Paige answers, “Um…sir, Dursley is one of the bigger boys in our class. He picks on a bunch of us; pushing us around. I didn’t think I’d have to see him today, but he was around and started in on me, while I was playing with Bunny.”
Randall and Izzy-B share a displeased look.
In a serious tone, Izzy-B says, “Where can I find the little bully?”
Paige answers, “He rides his bike around Clark’s Pharmacy’s parking lot.”
Not exactly sure what Izzy-B has in mind, Randall says, “Paige, I’m Mr. Gold…”, knowing that Paige is aware of that, but believing introductions are important. “…if Dursley gives you or your friends any more trouble, stop by my shop and let me know. I’ll deal with it.”
Paige looks at him uneasily. She has heard all the stories of Mr. Gold’s notoriously heartless ways. Izzy-B leans down and whispers in Paige’s ear, “He’s really a good guy…but keep it quiet. It’s his secret.” Paige smiles, and Randall smirks, overhearing Izzy-B.
Walking down the sidewalk, Randall and Izzy-B pass Tony’s Restaurant. Already knowing the answer, Randall asks, “Belle dear, are we getting pizza?”
As she keeps walking in a determined step, she says, “Yeah sure, after I visit Clark’s Pharmacy.”
Warily, he asks, “What are you going to do?”
She shrugs, “I’ll decide when I get there.”
As the pharmacy comes into view, they spot an eleven year old boy with short cropped hair and a flat face popping wheelies with his bicycle, almost running into an elderly pharmacy patron. Dursley can be heard yelling, “Out of the way, ya old bat!”
Sarcastically, Randall says, “Charming lad.”
As Dursley rides recklessly through the parking lot, Izzy-B’s steps pick up in pace striding directly towards the front of the bicycle. Dursley, momentarily speeds up, thinking this is a game of chicken that he will win, but the glare in Izzy-B’s eyes convinces him otherwise. He slows a bit, and Izzy-B grabs the handlebars, compelling the bicycle to stop. With the momentum caused by the sudden stop, Dursley slides forward onto the crossbar and winces.
Not yet seeing Mr. Gold, Dursley exclaims, “Hey lady, what do you think you’re doing?!?”
Leaning forward, Izzy-B hisses, “Dursley, we need to have a chat…and by ‘chat’ I mean I talk and you listen. I know all about you hassling Paige and the others. It stops now.”
His expression seems to ask, “Or what?”
Hence she answers the unspoken question, “Or I will make sure you regret it.”
Dursley finds himself oddly unnerved by this petite woman who is a mere inch taller than him. Then his discomfort heightens as he notices Mr. Gold with a menacing expression, circling around his bicycle like a vulture. While Dursley’s attention is on Randall, Izzy-B retrieves from the pocket of her jeans a Swiss Army Knife and pulls the corkscrew out, then shoves and twists it into his front tire.
Satisfied with the hole and the air escaping, she slips the Swiss Army Knife back into her pocket and says in a growl, “Hey Dursley, eyes over here. Are we clear?”
Looking back at Izzy-B, then shifting his gaze down to the rapidly deflating tire, he exclaims, “Hey, what the…”
With fake surprise, Izzy-B says, “Oh what rotten luck! You must have popped your tire racing around the parking lot. Too bad, guess you’ll be walking your bike home.” Leaning harder on the handlebars, forcing the rest of air out, she reiterates threateningly, “Are we clear?”
Clearly intimidated, Dursley grumbles, “Yes, ma’am.”
Watching the whole scene from inside the pharmacy, Mr. Clark snickers, sneezes and thinks, “That kid’s been driving away customers right and left. It’s about time he got some comeuppance.”
Walking back towards Tony’s Restaurant, Randall says, “So in the past fifteen minutes, you’ve rescued one child and threatened another. Who says you’re not mother material?” She gives Randall a playful nudge with her elbow as they walk.
Monday morning, Izzy-B meets Randall at the pawn shop with a to-go bag from Granny’s Diner in hand. Upon entering she says excitedly, “The whole town is buzzing!”
Rolling his eyes, Randall replies, “What are they saying about us now?”
As they make their way to the backroom, Izzy-B corrects, “Not us. Not this time. Yesterday, Henry Mills hopped a bus to Boston and brought back his birth mother” Randall thinks how displeased Regina must be that the closed adoption that he had arranged has now been blown wide open.
Izzy-B continues, “After dropping Henry off at Regina’s, the blonde bombshell, as Ruby calls her, was leaving Storybrooke after drinking some of Regina’s cider and wrecked her car. Now, she’s at the police station. I’m pretty sure one of us would have to streak down Main Street to get attention today.”
Randall chuckles, “I have no intention of disrobing for the gossips of Storybrooke.”
As Izzy-B removes their breakfast from the to-go bag, she interjects, “That’s a pity.”, smiling flirtatiously. She eyes his form, and for the first time since her arrival, she notices his attire differing from his typical dark or jewel toned shirts, and her brow furrows. She asks in a bewildered tone, “Is it laundry day?”
Confused by her lack of segue, he asks, “What do you mean?”
She tilts her inquisitively, “Other than most of the time you wear a three piece suit; not a two piece,…”, and she strokes the collar of his black and white shirt, continuing, “…what’s with the gingham check shirt? You’ve got this whole gentleman farmer look going. I know I said that you’d be cute in overalls, but you actually should wear the overalls, if you’re going to wear this shirt.”
With mock annoyance, he responds, “Can’t I try something different every now and then?”
With a twinkle in her eyes, she replies, “Of course you can, but this shirt should either be accompanied by overalls or be used for a tablecloth. If you lay down on the desk, I’d be happy to set breakfast on your chest.”
Having enough of her critique of his attire, he growls playfully, “I will not be toyed with, woman.”, pushing her against the desk and kissing her commandingly, as his hands trail down her sides, resting on her hips. Finishing the kiss with a light nip of her bottom lip, he asks in an authoritarian tone, “Now, are you going to be good?”
With an expression of exaggerated innocence, Izzy-B using her doe eyes to their fullest effect, she says sweetly with a hint of lust, “Oh yes, Randall, I’ll be very good. I promise.” After a moment more in each other’s arms, they go on to eat their breakfast and talk…and occasionally, Izzy-B still teases him about his shirt.
Late afternoon, Regina storms into the pawn shop, “Gold, I don’t appreciate incompetence!”
Dryly he says, “Don’t blame your short comings on your anger management therapist.”
Anger flaring, she replies, “Don’t be smug with me. I run this town.”
He is galled to see Regina after the pain that she inflicted on Izzy-B; his Belle. With an edge to his voice, he responds, “You really should see Dr. Hopper for your delusions of grandeur.”, and then leaning on his can, he growls, “Now, get out!”
With teeth bared, Regina bellows, “I wanted a closed adoption! Obviously, you don’t know what that means, because all of a sudden, I have Miss Swan, the birth mother, breezing into town!”
Smugly, Randall says, “Ah, yes, I heard the lad found his mother.”
Regina growls, “I’m his mother!”
With a smirk, he responds, “A mother should have paid closer attention to her son’s actions and not allowed her son to get on a bus bound for Boston. Perhaps your bed hopping between Graham, Kieron and who knows who else impaired your parenting. Not my fault…now, I repeat, ‘Get out.’”
With a cold gleam in her eyes, she says, “FYI, a benefactor will post your son’s bail tomorrow.”
Infuriated, he asks, “What benefactor?”
Her lips curl up cruelly, as she says, “I imagine he’ll be looking for payback, and your little tart will be in a world of pain. You can’t play guard dog 24/7.”
Just as she says, ‘seven’, Randall, grabs her collar and drags her to the door, as she shrieks and struggles in protest. Opening the door, he shoves her out and she stumbles. She quickly regains her footing and placid mask for the benefit of anyone who might see their Mayor.
Slamming the door, Randall vows aloud, “I will do whatever I have to do! I will protect Belle!” Any number of violent solutions run through his mind, and then he thinks of Izzy-B’s desperation to leave Storybrooke. Though much time and effort has gone into amassing the power that he has in Storybrooke, he resolves that if his Belle wish it, he will give it all up and the two of them can find a place to make a fresh start.
Randall spends much of the day, investigating and weighing his options to ensure Izzy-B’s safety. Some of the options are quite nefarious in nature, while on a whim, he also finds himself looking at listings for farmland in remote locales. He remembers his grandmother’s farm in Scotland and thinks he and Izzy-B could be extremely happy left to their own devices; forever indulging in each other. By evening, Randall is making the rounds collecting from his debtors.
Meanwhile, Izzy-B has spent the past hour in Ruby’s room at Granny’s Bed and Breakfast. Izzy-B is surprised to note that Ruby is less antagonistic about her relationship with Randall than anticipated. As she prepares to leave, she stops in the corridor, while Ruby continues walking to the reception room. Pulling out her phone, Izzy-B calls Randall.
Randall’s phone chimes as he walks. Picking up the phone, he says, “Hello, my beauty.”
Izzy-B thinks to herself, that sometimes he sounds so hokey, but she loves it. She says, “Hey you, where are you right now?”
He answers, “On my way to Granny’s Bed and Breakfast.”
She beams, “Ah, great minds think alike. I’m there now. Wanna grab a bite after?”
Trying to ignore thoughts of parts of her body that he would like to bite, he answers simply, “Sounds good.”
Suddenly a thought occurs to her, and she says mischievously, “So, you’re coming to the bed and breakfast…are you still wearing that shirt?”
Warily, waiting for the dig that he knows is coming, he answers, “Yes, I’m still wearing the same shirt.”
Izzy-B grins like he just gave her a Christmas present, and says, “It occurs to me that shirt gives you a bit of a Norman Bates vibe. You’re not planning on lurking by someone’s shower with a knife, are you?”
Shaking his head and thinking he will have to remember to burn that shirt when he gets home, he smirks and says, “The only shower that I have an interest in lurking by is yours, and I wouldn’t have a knife.”
She quips, “A sword?”
He laughs, “Bye Belle. I’ll be there momentarily.” As he ends the call, he notes the time on his phone is 8:14.
Izzy-B entering the reception room observes the ‘blonde bombshell’, and sees Randall enter the bed and breakfast, as Granny opens the reservation book, and says, “Now, what’s the name?”
Blankly, the blonde says, “Swan. Emma Swan.”
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Author’s Note: Please leave a comment/review. I love to read your thoughts on the story.
Soooo, Gold just heard Emma’s name. Time for a major league Enchanted Forest flashback. Izzy-B will not be in much of chapters 12 and 13, because they are heavily focused on Gold’s reaction to hearing Emma’s name and learning more backstories of past lives and some RumBelle flashback as well. However, Izzy-B will be back as a main focus in chapter 14. Click here to read more.