As heroes, villains and a pirate all worked together to "Save Henry," it looked as though Once Upon a Time Season 3 Episode 9 would finally give fans a happy ending.
But not so fast…
Heading back to Storybrooke's past, we were able to learn how Regina came to be Henry's mom. I'd always wondered what drove the Evil Queen to make such a leap. It turned out that even after successfully leveling a curse on her kingdom and gaining revenge on those she hated, Rumpelstiltskin was right. She still had an empty space in her heart.
The problem, if you care to call it such, was that Regina was capable of love and having felt it once, she couldn't be satisfied without it.
That led her to look to adopt a baby and being the impatient sort she wasn't thrilled with the idea of a waitlist. So that led her to Mr. Gold.
I really felt for Regina those first few days with baby Henry. As a parent, it's the worst feeling in the world when you feel as though you can't take care of your child. As Henry continued to cry, nothing else she'd ever accomplished mattered. Regina felt like a failure as a mom.
Nothing was more heartwarming than seeing her face light up as baby Henry finally cooed in her arms.
It didn't take Regina long to figure out Mr. Gold's game. He'd gifted her with the grandson of Snow White and Prince Charming which meant the baby's biological mother was the one person who could destroy her curse.
That knowledge nearly broke her resolve and sent her back to the adoption agency to return the child. Thankfully her heart won out and she kept Henry for good. It was a nice touch to see that Peter Pan had been searching for the boy even then.
Despite all of Regina's many flaws, she was even willing to put herself under an ancient potion so that she could forget her worries and be a good mother to her boy, even if that left her more vulnterable to the curse being broken. Never underestimate the power of love.
Fast forward to present day Neverland...
Although everyone fought to get Henry back, Regina pointed out that she had the most to lose. Emma had her parents, Neal, and a pining pirate all there for her. It may be of her own making but the only love Regina has in her life is Henry.
So when it came to taking down Peter Pan, I knew there was nothing she wouldn't do. And the expression on her face was one of bloodlust as she told Emma in this Once Upon a Time quote...
He can bleed. We can hurt him and if we can hurt him we can kill him.Regina
By the time Pan had the ladies tied to the tree that fed off of their regret, I could see where this was going. Emma would always regret giving up Henry. Snow would always regret sending baby Emma away.
But Regina…not so much regret there.
I did cast a curse that devastated an entire population. I have tortured and murdered. I've done some terrible things. I should be overflowing with regret but I'm not. Because it got me my son.Regina
Then she walked out of the trap, tore Pan's heart out of his chest, picked up Pandora's box and she was ready to go save her son.
I don't think I've ever loved the Evil Queen more.
Even back on the ship Regina went into mother mode with ease. Her son was ill and she took care of him, even going so far as to cast a protection spell so his heart couldn't be taken again. Too bad that spell didn't include his shadow.
There was that moment where Pan struggled with Henry where I knew something had passed between them but I couldn't tell what. The reveal that Peter Pan had swapped bodies with the boy was still a complete shock.
I didn't think it was possible. A hero, a villain, pirates. That we could all be untied but we were because of the most important piece of the puzzle. A leader.Charming
But will Emma be able to lead this motley crew once they get back to Storybrooke? And how much damage will Pan do before the truth is revealed?
Will you be happy to see them all out of Neverland when Once Upon a Time returns?
C. Orlando is a TV Fanatic Staff Writer. Follow her on Twitter.