Continuing Tales

The Heart Won't Lie

A Once Upon a Time Story
by Eyes Like Dawn

Part 15 of 25

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First Truths

Gold awoke the next morning with his head throbbing in a dulled pain that emanated all about his skull. A sharp stab felt like a knife was gouged in his head as he opened his eyes warily to the light of day.

Sun light was filtering through open windows, the blue curtains lazily shifting in the cool breezes that wafted through his room carrying the scents of the spring. Looking about he found that he was in his bed. How had he gotten there? What had happened? The last thing he vaguely remembered was people all around tossing things at him, their voices almost as one leering at him, venting their ire to the hated Mr. Gold.

He remembered being helpless, with no way to defend his person against the objects being hurled at him, his cane shattered and useless, and then she arrived like some angel come down to earth; pressing through the throngs to be at his side. Belle had come to his aid, helping him, and guiding him away from the wolves and their snapping jaws.

Sitting up with just a touch of vertigo swirling around his head, he found Belle sitting in a chair by his bedside, her head and upper torso lying on the bed as she slept soundly in such an awkward position. Her russet curls fell pleasantly about her face in loose tendrils, yet he could see she slept as if anxious. Had she stayed by his side all night?

"Belle?" He called her name confusingly, giving her a slight shove to rouse her awake.

The chestnut haired beauty's eyes fluttered open as she looked about sleepily, more than likely wondering where she was as well. Gold could see the night's events coming back to her mind slowly, as her eyes widened.

"You're awake." She pointed out obviously, her tone laced with huge amounts of relief. She placed her delicate hand over his own, squeezing slightly, her eyes searching his with visible concern that touched him in a way that confused him. "How are you feeling?"

Gold grimaced as his head burst in an array of fresh pain. "Like I got my head spilt wide open." He replied dryly. "What happened? I only remember flashes."

"You got cornered by an angry mob." Anna revealed gently. Shaking off the last effects of a tumultuous sleep she stood up, and rolled her now stiff shoulders from sleeping in such an uncomfortable position. "I contacted Dr. Whale after I got you home. He told me to call him as soon as you woke, so sit tight, I'll be back soon."

As she dutifully disappeared out of the room, Gold let himself take a moment to gather himself and sort the situation. He'd been cornered, assaulted, insulted, and finally led home by the one person he thought would never make an effort to save his skin. The one person who'd only shown caring to him that he'd pushed away.

Looking down he found himself in a pair of his fresh night clothes on his person. Had she dressed him? At the thought Gold couldn't help but feel very vulnerable and indecent, his throat drying, and a very faint tint of red briefly coming to his cheeks as he imagined her undressing him in his half conscious state.

"Good news, Dr. Whales is on his way." Anna stated as she slipped back into Gold bedroom.

Even though she cleaned the place often enough, it never ceased to surprise her how…simple it was given that he was the richest man in town. There was a king sized bed with red silk sheets, a mahogany wardrobe, and dresser that filled the room. Other than a few small items it looked rather humble.

Gold smiled faintly at her as he shifted slightly in the bed. "Very well. Tell me, did you by any chance…" He was too cowardly to finish the sentence, but instead drew attention to the plain white tee and pants beneath.

Anna's eyes widened, as her face caught afire at his implication. "Oh…um well, some one had to get you out of that sticky suit." She admitted, biting her bottom lip warily as if he would be mad at her actions.

"I assume you didn't try to wash the suit." He managed to stammer lamely out his mouth before the awkwardness completely overtook them.

Her look of alert was instantaneous as she slapped a hand to her forehead. "Crap." She muttered lowly. With out another word, she took off to try and save the expensive suit.

Gold on the other hand couldn't have cared less; it was only fabric. The only thing he truly cared about was trying desperately to recall the feel of her hands smoothing across his skin in his half conscious state.


It took the good doctor of Storybrooke about thirty minutes to show up. As Anna let him in, she couldn't help, but draw a thin frown upon her lips as Emma Swann followed him in.

The sheriff of Storybrooke held a guilty expression about her usual incredulous demeanor. Who would have known the one time something major like a mass assault went down; she was half way across town breaking into the person who was being assaulted house. She hadn't been on her job as protector of Storybrooke, and for that a bit of guilt did sink through her.

"What are you doing here?" Anna practically growled to Emma, her blue eyes flashing angrily.

Emma crossed her arms, taking a furtive glance at the brown haired beauty, meeting Annabelle's hostile look with one of her own. "Some one got assaulted, Anna. It's my job to investigate."

"And it's my job to check on the patient." Whale butted in nervously as if desperately not wanting to be caught between the two angry women. Shouldering a blue duffel bag with the Storybrooke hospital logo printed on it, the good doctor bounded up the stairs to check on his patient.

The two women left alone downstairs sized one another up for a moment, their eyes cutting and searching. It was Emma who turned away first, taking a few steps to a nearby cabinet, looking though the glass to the trinkets within. "So, how are you and Gold?"

"Why do you want to know? Can't wait to tell all of Storybrooke what Mr. Gold and his whore are up to? Maybe relate to those gossip mongers how we hunt down children and skin them for their pelts while you're at it." Anna snapped angrily.

This woman had no right to pry when nothing was her business. How dare she even ask something so personal.

Emma flinched at the harsh words, though spun to face Anna, her mouth forced in a thin hard frown. "I know you don't believe me, but I didn't tell anyone about you and him." The woman was so defensive for no reason that Emma could see. She could still remember the packed bag on the bed, and the note left on the counter from the night she had broken in. That hadn't seemed like Anna was 'in love' with Gold, yet here she stood defending their…whatever they had.

Taking a step forward the sheriff dropped her voice as if some one could have been listening, her eyes dancing with concern. "I just want to help. If he's making you stay here some how, I can get you to safety."

"He's not making me stay here." Anna assured. "Were would you get such a redicul-"

"Miss Swann, Gold would like to have a word with you." Dr. Whale interrupted as he tramped down the stairs. He smiled faintly at Anna as he produced a clip board and pen from his bag. "I just have a few things to go over with you, Miss French."

Neither woman moved for a moment, casting one another, distrustful glances trying to discover what the other knew. At length, Emma sighed and relented making her way up the stairs.


"May I just ask, Sheriff Swann, where were you during the festival supposedly keeping the peace as is your job to do so?" Mr. Gold asked dryly as the glowering sheriff entered his room.

Emma's eyes narrowed caustically as she slowly neared the bed. "Some thing else came up across town. I can't be everywhere at once." She lied as she dug into her pocket for a small note pad. "Anyone you want to press charges on?"

Gold spat out a faint mirthless chuckle, glaring at the sheriff. "Miss Swann it was a mob. The only one I can identify properly was Moe French." He tapped his left cheek where an ugly purplish black bruise was splayed across his face. "He gave me that last night in his drunken state."

"Anna's father?" She paused for a moment, letting the news sink into her fertile mind before she scribbled down on the pad. "Fine, I'll go pick him up and see what he says." The sudden resurgence of bad blood between Gold and Mr. French, Anna's refusal to admit something was wrong? Emma knew for certain a piece of the puzzle was missing from her night's raid of his home. If only she could figure out what it might be she could get to the bottom of the situation.

"Something not right here." She glared accusingly at him as she slipped the yellow note pad back into her jacket. "I'm certain you know blackmail is a very serious offense. If you're somehow forcing Annabelle to stay here…" She left the threat linger unsaid, but her growling tone spoke volumes.

"Blackmail?" Gold shook his head. "I'm not blackmailing her; she stays because she wants to."

"Which is why when I passed her room, it looked like no one was staying there, and a bag by the foot of the bed all packed and ready to go?" She refuted. In reality it had been last night she'd had seen it when she broke in, but gold didn't that.

His brow furrowed at her words in genuine confusion. "What?" Her things had been packed away?

"Yeah, and now with Mr. French assaulting you and her refusal to leave, you can see how some one might take this. Did you force her to stay?" She asked; her eyes locked to Gold's.

Gold didn't blink as they stared one another down. "No, Sheriff Swann. I do not, and will not make her stay if she doesn't wish to. Now I suggest, you get out and finally start doing your job instead of playing Nancy Drew."

"Alright, Gold." Emma complied as she took a slow step to the door. Why could she still not detect a lie from him? This puzzle made less sense each passing day. "But I will figure out what's going on here." She promised then turned to leave.

Gold allowed himself a weary sigh as he listened carefully to the footsteps of the sheriff grow fainter as she departed from his home. Her revelation of the packed bag was a fact that made his heart clench. Had Anna had been planning to leave because he had spurned her? Why not, when the only person she relied on turned his back on her.

Why had she even come to his aid at all after all he had done for the past few weeks was shunning her in his anger? Nobody ever came to the beast's rescue, especially those who felt as if even the beast had repelled them.

"Gold?" Anna spoke his name gently, severing his confusing contemplations. She stood at the doorway, a tray with a few items on it in her hands looking at him expectantly. "Dr. Whale said you should try to eat something." She explained with a faint shrug.

Padding quickly to his bedside, the beauty laid the tray on the beds edge carefully not to tip over the bowl of cereal on the tray. Plucking up a stack of bandages lying on the tray, she unrolled them skillfully. "Let me change the dressing on that gash first."

"Why?" Gold asked quietly, staring at the kind Belle.

Anna pried the old piece of bandage off, tossing it in a waste bin as she shrugged. "Dr. Whale said-."

"No not that." He interrupted with a slight hiss of pain at her ministrations. "Why didn't you leave?"

Anna tried not to show her surprise at his knowledge of her departure. How in the world had he known she'd once been planning to slip away?

Cleaning off the wound with water, her brow knit together furtively. "How did you know?"

"A little birdie tipped me off." He replied with a slight wince at the sting of pain as Anna cleaned the cut. He tactfully left out that 'little birdie' was Sheriff Swann who had uncovered her plan to slip away. "So why haven't you left? Surely it must have been the perfect opportunity."

Anna remained silent for a moment as she dabbed a cloth into cool water again to clean the gash. She'd not dare tell him she couldn't abandon him. She dare not admit the sight of him on the littered asphalt helpless and at the mercy of the angered citizens had made her heart lurch in fear for him.

Her thoughts of flight had been dashed as she knelt down to help him up; she wouldn't leave him in such a state. "There was no one else." She stated. "After all you've done for me this was the least I could do in return."

But after he had been so callous and cruel towards her? Building his walls of isolation around his heart to try and repel her? What of his hostile words that he spewed because of his thoughtless anger towards her when she had done nothing wrong? Gold was confounded as to why she hadn't been hurling things in his moment of helplessness with the rest of them. He certainly deserved it from her most of all.

Instead she had taken him home and tenderly cared for him. While anyone else would have left him on the street.

Shaking his head slightly he gently pushed her hand away; the wound momentarily forgotten. "But why? After these past weeks how I have treated you? You could have just as easily turned away and left me. No one would have blamed you. On the contrary they'd have probably cheered you on."

He well knew the citizens of Storybrooke would have readily accepted her if she showed the same amount of disgust they did towards him. It would have been a way of finally getting away from the beast and the start of normalcy again for her, but she had chosen to stand for him braving the face of more gossip and scrutiny. It made no sense!

"I couldn't stand there and watch you get pelted with popcorn and rocks." She replied simply; attempting to put the bandage in place. It was a far greater reason for her actions, but one she kept tucked away in her heart. "Now let me finish this bandage."

He struggled slightly, trying to push her away, a gnawing notion welling up with in him that made him feel like he couldn't breath. It was an all to familiar experience he had felt before, and one that scared him more than anything in this world or the other. He knew that wasn't the real reason. There was a deeper meaning to her rescue.

"Not until you stop dodging my question." He snarled trying to mask the panic coming into his voice. "Why did you save me?" He persisted, his onyx eyes searching Anna's intently, begging to know what possessed her to have saved the beast. He grabbed her wrist that held the bandage, holding it tight, desperately for an answer.

"Let me go." She whimpered, trying to yank free, but Gold's grip was much stronger than she anticipated.

"Why?" He barked again, fervently.

"I just…"




"Because I love you, you stupid man!" Anna finally yelled as the words erupted raggedly from her throat.

The tension that had been building for weeks finally broke asunder revealing what she had tried so hard to deny and hide away. For the first time admitting aloud what had been growing in heart since she'd first arrived in his home, since he'd first smiled at her, since he'd first spoken her name.

Anna let the bandage fall to the bed, as he released her from his grip, her face a mix of emotions that Gold couldn't identify or recognize, so intertwined together playing upon her beautiful face. "I love you. Why can't you see that?" She whispered disparagingly, her voice catching tightly in her throat.

Before he could reply, even if he would reply, she turned away flitting out the room so he would not see the tears that broke free with the admission.

I love you three words she had uttered what felt like a lifetime ago, and yet still had the same effect on him now as she professed them again. To love him? No one loved the beast, he was not meant to be loved, and yet here she was in another time and place, and realm, her feelings not changing even in the face of the stronghold that surrounded his heart. Of all the things he'd done, how he had shut her out, how could she still love him?

He remembered the first time that word escaped her lips. True love. No it couldn't be. He had grabbed her by her arms practically shaking her, yelling that no one could ever love him. Not her, not somthing so beautiful, and wonderful as Belle.

She had offered him her love and he had thrown it back in her face rejecting her heart in place of keeping his power and position. He rejected it because it because he was afraid, he knew; afraid of something outside his control. Her claiming him to be a coward had been spot on.

Now here she was again admitting feelings he was certain she'd never remember or feel towards him. Those feelings had only been a trick; he had told himself before. She had used her words, and preyed upon his feelings for the dark queen. Or she had wanted to slay the beast, and be the hero she'd always dreamt of being. And yet she had helped despite his cold taciturn nature towards her.

Could her words have been true?

Could it be that she truly, loved one such as he? Did he love one such as her? He certainly didn't feel worthy enough to posses her love and yet there it was for the taking once more. If only he would take it.

Gold was many things, but a fool was not one of them, especially when he saw something as rare as love bare itself a second time before one such as he. It was rare the first time she had offered, but a second was on par with a miracle. Would he be so foolish or scared as to shun it again?


Anna hadn't bothered to halt the flow of tears as they brooked down her face. She didn't try to wipe the sheen of them away as they glistened on her cheeks. She let wayward strands of her chestnut mane stick to the salty liquid as she looked out of the small kitchen window.

There was no taking back those words now, they had been said, her heart had been bared and raw to him at the confession. Anna couldn't help but feel like being dumped in a vat of heated emotions: relief for finally letting such feelings free, fear at his reaction, second guessing herself, and anger for not keeping it walled inside like she had for so long.

She sighed, a hand rubbing her forehead; it was a mess, a huge complicated awkward mess that she saw no way to fixing except for her to disappear and never see him again. But even that thought at the moment was to painful to think of.

The familiar tapping of a cane suddenly echoed from the stairs. It was the spare one she had found in his closet and hooked by his bedside. He shouldn't have been up so soon, but she knew not much could keep the tenacious Gold down. Anna listened carefully, her heart beating in tandem with each thump as they got nearer and nearer. He would surely kick her out now. He, the callous Mr. Gold was told by a crazy woman that she loved him? That would off kilter even the most understanding of people.

Her heart felt as though it jumped into her throat and stayed there as he appeared in the doorway. The left side of his face was discolored from the brutal punch her father had dealt him; the crimson gash still un-bandaged.

"I…Gold…what I said…" She stammered until her words drabbled off to a stop in sheer embarrassment. She couldn't and wouldn't deny her words, but she needed to say something to show she wasn't a complete babbling moron.

He remained silent, stalking closer to her in his limping gait. A touch of fear filled Anna at his strange silence, what was he going to do? He was closer now, so very close, their bodies just inches apart.

They stared at one another for a moment in dead silence; though Anna felt as if her heart could be heard drumming through out Storybrooke. "Gold…" She tried speaking again, but halted as if his intent gaze had forcefully shut her mouth.

Anna could only watch as a silent spectator as Gold cupped her face in his hands gently, his thumb smoothing over her soft skin, wiping the tears away. The touch brought a burst of warmth to Anna as she stood gazing back at his eyes; blue staring into midnight black.

After such a kind gesture, he paused for only a heartbeat before he tenderly pressed his lips against her own.

The Heart Won't Lie

A Once Upon a Time Story
by Eyes Like Dawn

Part 15 of 25

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