Storybrooke, The Present--Henry wants to know WTF the stranger on the motorcycle is doing in town. The stranger isn't saying, except that he's there to do "something."
Regina is freaked the heck out that a stranger is in the town her curse created.
Meanwhile, at Snow's apartment, she's late for work, and rushes out the door.
But, oh, she was lying to Emma. She merely wanted to get to Granny's diner by 7:15 am, because that is when Charming comes in every day to get coffee for himself and his curse-created wife, Katherine. Snow just wants a chance to see and talk to him.
Charming stops briefly to speak to his forgotten wife, and goes to take coffee to his fake one, who is waiting outside in the car for him.
Emma shows up and teases Snow about stalking. Snow denies this, then reveals she totally IS a stalker by reciting Charming's entire weekly schedule to Emma.
She wishes there was a magic cure for love.
Enchanted Forest, The Past--Hmmm......is there a magic cure for love? Maybe. Why else would be be in the Enchanted Forest now?
Red comes up on Snow in the woods, and nearly gets an arrow to the chest because of it, as Snow was not expecting Red with supplies for another month. Red sadly informs Snow that Charming's wedding to Princess Abigail (aka King Midas's daughter, and fake-wife Katherine in Storybrooke) is going forward.
Snow is bummed, and wishes there was a way she could forget about Charming, who she has only met once at this point (but it was true love, so it was love at first sight, yo).
Red tells her about Rumplestiltskin, and how he can do any kind of magic, even that.
How is it that Snow grew up as a princess in the Enchanted Forest and is just now hearing about Rumplestiltskin? EVERYONE in the Enchanted Forest knows about Rumplestiltskin.
So, poor, uninformed Snow takes a rowboat to visit Rumple. He appears upon her docking and immediately asks her how much she wants for the boat. When she says it isn't for sale, he scoffs. Of course it is. Everyone has a price, after all.
Snow may not have known about Rumple, but he knew about her, and has been looking forward to meeting her.
He tells her magic can't make anyone love her (it's one of the three laws of magic, guys). But, he CAN make her forget Charming.
So, Rumple whips up a forgetting potion right there on the dock, all whilst talking about what a joke love is. When Snow asks the price for the potion, he says it's a gift. All he requires is the hair he already took off her head to make the potion.
That will be important later.
Storybrooke, The Present--Snow bumps into Katherine and Regina in the grocery store, and notices Katherine has a pregnancy test in her basket. Regina snarkily reminds Snow to keep that info to herself, as Charming and Katherine's lives are none of their business.
Enchanted Forest, The Past--Charles Widmore from Lost (who is actually King George in the Enchanted Forest), isn't satisfied that Charming is merely marrying Abigail....he wants him to love her, and demands he forget whoever else it is that Charming is obviously in love with.
Charming tells King George he didn't ask for any of this. George plucked him from his life and made him pretend to be his twin brother, Prince James, in exchange for not killing him and his mother. George tells him to get over it.
After George leaves the room, Charming writes a message to Snow.
Storybrooke, The Present--Snow finds an injured bird in the woods, and takes it to the local animal shelter. Charming is there because he works there. The resident veterinarian says the bird is from a very loyal breed, and if she is separated from her flock before they migrate, the bird will be alone forever.
Snow relates to this.
Charming offers to go with her to return the bird to the woods, because a storm is coming, but Snow insists on going alone.
Meanwhile, Regina bullies Emma into looking into the newcomer in town, not because being new in town is against the law, but because he was talking to Henry.
Of course, Regina totally doesn't care about the guy talking to Henry. Outsiders aren't supposed to even be able to see Storybrooke, much less come riding their motorcycles right on into it. But, using Henry as a reason is enough to get Emma to agree to talk to him.
Enchanted Forest, The Past--Snow gets Charming's message, delivered via bird, asking her to come to him before his wedding in two days, and they can run away together, leave all the royal stuff behind, and be together forever. If she doesn't come, he will have his answer that she does not love him as he loves her.
Snow looks hopeful.
It occurs to me that George threatened Charming with killing Charming's mother (as well as Charming) if he didn't marry Abigail. Is Charming's love for Snow so strong that he forgot about his mother's safety?
She sneaks into George's castle with a bunch of yellow flowers she tells the wedding planner are from King Midas. Once in the castle, she is kidnapped and thrown into a cell, just before she goes after Charming, who was walking by.
In the cell, Snow meets a dwarf....Grumpy, who is whistling the "Hi Ho" song in a menacing way.
Grumpy assures her the bars get stronger the more she tries to escape, and there is no way out of the dungeon. Snow tells him with confidence that she will find a way.
Turns out, Grumpy is in the cell because of love. Something to do with being swindled into buying a stolen rock with which to propose.
Stealthy (the secret 8th dwarf!) turns up and gets Grumpy out of there. When Snow tells him she hopes he gets his love back, he begrudgingly has Stealthy get her out, too.
Storybrooke, The Present--Snow falls off a cliff while trying to return the bird to its flock, and is only kept from falling by holding onto some dangling roots.
Charming shows up and saves her.
Snow thanks him, and immediately goes after the bird, which is in a cage on the road. She tells Charming she has to find its flock. He talks her into getting back in her car, with the bird, because somehow rain makes it unsafe outside.
Enchanted Forest, The Past--Snow, Grumpy, and Stealthy argue about which way to go to get out of the castle. Grumpy goes with Stealthy, and Stealthy promptly gets shot by an arrow-wielding guard. The guards are about to kill Grumpy, too, when Snow shows up with a torch and threatens to burn all the hay around them, and the castle with it, if they don't let Grumpy go.
King George arrives, sets Grumpy free, and demands that he and Snow "talk." Guys, I think he knows Snow is the one for whom Charming has feelings.
Storybrooke, The Present--Snow and Charming find an abandoned cabin in the woods, where they and the bird seek shelter from the rain. Snow is frustrated, because she still has feelings for Charming, and she tells him so.
Being around him is too painful for her, she sobs.
He laughs, which pisses her off, until he tells her the reason he goes to Granny's every morning is to see her.
They ALMOST kiss, but Snow stops it by revealing Katherine bought a pregnancy test.
Meanwhile, at Granny's diner, Emma approaches the stranger, who sits there drinking coffee, a wooden box at his feet. Emma says the stranger is suspicious because he was talking to Henry.
The stranger tells her his bike broke down in front of Henry's house, and Henry was curious and came out to talk to him.
Emma wants to know what is in the box. Since it's not a crime to carry a box, he refuses to tell her, and threatens to drive her crazy with wondering, for a long time to come......unless she lets him buy her a drink.
Well, I guess a drink it is.
Turns out, all that is in the box is a typewriter. Stranger is a writer, and finds Storybrooke to be an inspiring locale.
He gets up to leave, having not bought Emma a drink. When she asks about it, he said the offer was for a drink "sometime." He'll cash in on it later.
Back at the cabin of almost-adultery, Charming doesn't know about the pregnancy test, and follows Snow out into the woods when the rain stops, wanting to talk more about their mutual feelings. Snow finds the bird's flock, and sets it free to be with them.
Charming tells Snow he has "remembered" feelings for Katherine, and real ones for her. Because he is married (or so she thinks), Snow says they will have to forget each other, and does what everyone in this town does at the end of a conversation....walks away without another word. Maybe walking away can be a drinking game here, too?
Enchanted Forest, The Past--George wants Snow to tell Charming she doesn't love him, or George will kill not Snow, but Charming. Midas would forgive Charming getting killed by an assassin, but not for refusing to love his daughter If Charming doesn't love Abigail, George's kingdom will crumble.
To save Charming, Snow does as George asked, breaking both of their hearts in the process. Snow sobs as she leaves the castle, her face turned so he can't see how this is crushing her.
Storybrooke, The Present--In the home of Charming and Katherine (Abigail), Katherine tells Charming she wants kids with him, and thought she was pregnant, but wasn't. She is actually relieved, because their marriage is in such a messed up place, having a kid just then would be a mess. She wants them to go to Jiminy for marriage counseling.
Katherine tells him he better go get his morning coffee at Granny's, but he opts for having breakfast at home with her instead.
Enchanted Forest, The Past--Snow is now hanging out with the seven remaining dwarves, and crying about Charming. Grumpy offers to take Snow home with them and protect her, because she saved him, and that makes her one of them now.
Snow starts to take the potion, because the pain of losing Charming is too much, but Grumpy talks her out of it, telling her the potion will always be there if she does need it, but to not use it that day.
He gives her some kind of Captain Kirk explanation of how he wouldn't take it, even to forget the pain of losing his own love, because he needs his pain. It makes him who he is....Grumpy (I see what you did there, Show).
Snow agrees to put the potion away.
Storybrooke, The Present--Snow and Emma eat breakfast together at Snow's apartment. Snow does not go to Granny's.
Enchanted Forest, The Past--Charming rides through the woods, looking for Snow. He comes across Red, who says Snow never came back after going to look for him.
Charming: "I will find her. I will always find her." (*drink)
Grumpy rushes in to Snow's bedroom at the dwarf lair, and tells her the wedding is off, and Charming left Abigail.
Ooh, she took the forgetting potion!
Storybrooke, The Present--Snow goes to Granny's at 7:45 am, hoping to avoid Charming. But, he's there. He was trying to avoid her, too.
When he follows her out, he tells her that Katherine is NOT pregnant. That's all the info Snow needs. They kiss.
Naturally, Regina is across the street in her car, watching them and scowling. This wasn't what she had in mind when she cast the curse.
Snow and Charming, with the arrival of Emma, are finding the happiness between them Regina tried so hard to erase.
Next: Season 1, Episode 11--"The Fruit of the Poisonous Tree"
*All photos are Creative Commons