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Back Pains & Love Gains

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Emma sat as patiently in the conference room. She couldn’t believe everyone was late to the council meeting except for her. As the minutes rolled along and she remained alone, she anxiously drummed her fingers on the table wondering if she had read Regina’s email correctly.

She pulled her phone out and double-checked her email:

Saturday, 2 p.m.- don’t be late.

The clock read, 2:30 p.m. The Sheriff had practically ran to the city hall thinking she was late only to find the room empty when she arrived fifteen minutes passed two.

Just when the nervous blonde was about to text the Mayor, the brunette glided through the door, a smirk playing across her lips as she took in the confused looking Sheriff sitting in a chair halfway down the long, rectangular table.

“Sheriff Swan,” acknowledged Regina, “how decent of you to arrive early.”

Early?! Your email said to get here at 2.”

“Oh, did it?” toyed the brunette, placing her index finger pensively on her bottom lip, “Hmmm, it must have been a typo,” she smirked as she placed her stack of papers on the table.

“You did that on purpose,” said Emma eyeing the mayor sharply.

“I have no idea what you’re talking about, dear,” replied the brunette with a mischievous smile as she took her seat at the head of the table.

Emma noticed a slight wince and drain of color from the mayor’s face as she sat down rather stiffly into her seat.

“You okay?” she inquired.

“I’m fine,” said Regina rather indignantly as she removed her hand that had been placed on her lower back.

“Uh huh… right, so what was that wince for then?” said the blonde with a cocked eyebrow.

“You smell funny,” countered Regina. She wasn’t proud of that one, but it was all she had at the moment as she felt a sharp ache creep up her spine.

“I smell funny? Really? Something must be wrong because you are seriously off your game today,” replied the blonde.

Regina shot her a sharp look and opened her mouth to respond, but was cut off by the creak of the council door and the shuffling of shoes as the council reluctantly arrived for their Saturday meeting.

Emma’s eyes were fixed on Regina for the duration of the meeting. Something was definitely off with the woman, and Emma didn’t quite know whey she felt so concerned to know what it was all about.

She observed how Regina’s hand would subtly push against the muscles around her spine causing her face to stiffen. Though Regina normally had excellent posture, her stiff position produced an aura of discomfort that never seemed present before.

Regina periodically felt the Sheriff’s eyes on her and tried to cover her pain as quickly as she could, but at this point she was tired of games and just wanted the meeting over as soon as possible so she could go home.

When the council was finally adjourned, Regina slowly raised herself from her seat and collected her papers when she felt a hand softly touch her wrist. She looked up to find the blonde standing close to her side, her green eyes piercing her with intensity.

“Hey, if your back is hurting, I can…” started Emma, but Regina cut her off quickly.

“It’s fine,” she huffed.

“Oh come on, Regina…”

“It’s fine, Ms. Swan. I would prefer it if you would drop the matter entirely,” stated the brunette before waltzing from the room leaving an agitated Emma behind her.

….

Throughout the proceeding week, Emma noticed Regina’s body language growing louder and louder. It screamed back pain, but Regina bound and gagged the very notion whenever she noticed Emma watching her.

Though she didn’t want to invade Regina’s privacy, Emma began to grow concerned when she saw the normally skyscraper-high heel-flaunting mayor walking slowly around town in flats. Asking Henry if he had noticed anything, the young kid simply replied that she had moving slower than usual and figured it was because she’d been spending more and more time working in her office at home after she got home from work.

She figured she would allow the brunette a few more days to figure things out, but after seeing the almost strained look in her eyes as she stiffly sat in her chair at the next council meeting, Emma knew she had to intervene.

Once the rest of the council members filed out, Emma approached the brunette who was slowly rising from her chair, her knuckles creating a white mountain range as she clutched the arm rest for support.

“Seriously, if you don’t let me help you- then by next week I’m going to have to shove you in the clock tower and start calling you Quasimodo,” said the blonde flatly as she stood in front of Regina with her hands on her hips.

“Don’t be absurd, Ms. Swan, I’m fi…”

“If you say, ‘I’m fine,’ one more time, by the gods I’ll throw you in that clock tower right now,” replied Emma- her tone joking yet fierce.

“There is nothing wrong,” replied Regina picking up her prized fountain pen and placing it on top of the stack of papers in her arms.

“Oh yeah?” said Emma, “prove it,” she taunted.

“I don’t have to prove anything to you,” said Regina absolutely baffled by the blonde’s invasiveness- though why this sort of behavior from Emma still took her aback she didn’t know.

“Right,” replied Emma shortly.

The Sheriff reached out and knocked Regina’s pen off her stack of papers. It landed with a loud clack on the tile floor causing Regina to gasp slightly as she looked down at it. But Emma’s gaze remained fixed on the brunette’s face.

“Pick it up,” said Emma coolly.

“No,” scoffed Regina at Emma’s childish actions.

“Fine,” replied the blonde turning on her heel and walking out the room. The mayor looked after her with disgust before returning her gaze to her pen now gracing an area on the floor that suddenly seemed really, really far away.

Emma hid around the door, popping her head far enough in to remain hidden, but still have a good view of the mayor. She watched quietly as Regina plopped the papers on the table then gripped the back of a chair and very, very slowly began to bend her knees. Half way down, she lets out a small cry and snaps up clutching her back with a trembling hand.

“Ha!” says Emma victoriously striding into the room, “Yeah, you’re not okay. Come on.”

The blonde picks up the pen, grabs Regina’s papers in one arm and clutches the brunette’s elbow with the other- quickly, but carefully, guiding her out of the room, down the hall, and into the mayor’s office.

“Lay face down on the couch over there,” says Emma rather forcefully.

Regina stood defiantly for a minute, but that last attempt at getting the pen off the floor had her entire back tightening in twisting spasms. With a short sigh, the mayor removed her shoes and placed herself slowly on the couch- adjusting her blouse and pants and turning her head away from the blonde. She was extremely embarrassed about the situation, but in too much pain to reject Emma’s offer.

Before she knew it, Emma Swan was straddling her body just over her butt, the blonde’s knees placed squeezing her sides.

Just what do you think you’re doing, Sheriff?!” hissed Regina turning her head and sitting up slightly.

“I know this is extremely thrilling for you,” said Emma with a sarcastic smile as she gently pressed Regina back down to the couch, “but try to contain your excitement and relax. I have work to do.”

Regina’s response was cut off by a deep grunt echoing from her throat as Emma’s palms pressed between her shoulder blades.

“Jesus Christ, Regina,” muttered the blonde, “What the hell have you been doing?”

Her palms moved slowly down around the mayor’s spine, slowly varying the pressure as she kneaded the hard tissue.

“Nothing that concerns, ooph, you,” replied the brunette. Emma slowly raked her fingers down Regina’s back, stopping to knead the bottom half of her back as she felt the woman beneath her tense under her touch.

“Seriously Regina, this is insane, have you been attempting Kama Sutra or something?” said the blonde with a tiny smile as Regina scoffed.

“If you must know, I’ve been heavily preoccupied with the ordinances for the new high school,” mumbled the brunette into the couch.

“Last time I checked school ordinance don’t pile drive into people’s backs with jackhammers and wrecking balls,” replied the blonde working on a particular difficult knot in the middle of Regina’s back.

“Yes, well…” Regina moaned softly as she felt her back loosen slightly, “There’s a lot of work to be done and it has me working late hours. I’ve developed the particularly unfortunate habit of falling asleep at my desk,” she hummed briefly as Emma’s hands twisted over a tight knot.

“School ordinances are important and all, but they’re not worth fucking your back up for,” replied Emma.

“Language, Ms. Swa-“ Regina’s voice caught in her throat as she heard a couple bones cracking. She panicked for a moment before a warm, fuzzy feeling spread up the muscles around her spine, “Just because you don’t take your job seriously, doesn’t mean everyone else doesn’t.”

Regina half regretted the statement after she said it, she was currently in no position to be criticizing and antagonistic- but this sort of banter just seemed to flow naturally whenever she dealt with Emma.

“I do take my job seriously,” replied the blonde solemnly, “but I also know when to stop,” she said. Her tone didn’t sound offended by the brunette’s comment at all, and in reality she wasn’t- this sort of mudslinging banter always seemed natural with Regina.

“That’s surprising, if my memory serves me correctly- you are exactly the type of person who doesn’t know how to stop,” said Regina into the couch. She expected a response, but instead there was silence- the only sound was Emma’s firm hands steadily working around her back.

Regina wondered if it had been the wrong thing to say and decided to change the subject in case she offended the one person who had offered to help her.

“I must admit, Ms. Swan, you are quite skilled,” she sighed as Emma’s palms moved in slow circles on her lower back.

“I have many skills,” replied Emma with a small smile.

“What was that?” asked Regina.

“Nothing,” smiled the blonde smiling to herself, “I went to massage school when I was twenty.”

“Mmmmm…” replied Regina as she felt her back slowly release pressure with each firm digging of Emma’s hands.

Emma continues to work in silence, secretly relishing each grunt and moan her hands are issuing from Regina’s mouth. As her hands worked up and down the brunette’s spine, she felt a sense of melancholy as she realized she was nearly finished. There was something so beautifully intimate about massaging Regina.

The brunette was always reluctant to receive assistance, especially from Emma- and now that it was finally rewarded to her, Emma couldn’t help but feel a peculiar notion of gratitude for the former queen. Regina always seemed to have that effect on her. Even though she was the one helping the brunette, she felt grateful for the opportunity.

Regina felt her entire body melt into the couch as Emma’s hands worked their way around her loosening back. She couldn’t believe she had refused the blonde’s assistance for so long, this was absolutely phenomenal. The way Emma handled her body was almost with a kind of reverence. The blonde seemed completely attentive and in tune with every movement, knot, and spasm in her back- addressing each with a fervent hand motion that instantly released a warm tingling.

She didn’t know how she would repay Emma for her generosity. Dinner, perhaps. It would only be fitting and Regina had to admit that hearing Emma went to massage school when she was twenty made her extremely curious as to what else the Sheriff was hiding in her past. The mayor had always been curious of Emma, but she realized now that somewhere along the line, her suspicious feelings towards the Savior had turned into sheer inquisitiveness.

Before she knew it, her back felt cold and she realized Emma’s hands were gone and the blonde had stood up. She instantly felt disappointed.

“Sit up, I need to work on your shoulders last,” said the blonde pleasantly. Emma knew she didn’t need to work on Regina’s shoulders, but she too had felt a sudden sense of longing once her hands left Regina’s back.

The brunette slowly sat up on the couch, fixing her hair quickly and placing her hands on her lap, eagerly awaiting more but trying to act as professional as possible.

Emma settled on the couch so close to Regina, her torso almost came into contact with the brunette’s back. She moved her hands to Regina’s shoulders and began kneading the muscles.

She found herself momentarily distracted as her nose gently grazed the brunette’s hair- the smell of lavender permeating her nostrils; she closed her eyes to memorize the moment.

Regina’s breath hitched slightly as she felt how close Emma sat to her. The movements of her hands seemed different than when they were working on her back. That had seemed very technical and precise, but Emma’s hands on her shoulders somehow felt like she was trying to communicate an emotion through her fingertips.

Emma smiled at the tiny moan that issued from Regina’s lips as her head lolled backwards, resting on Emma’s shoulder. The mayor seemed so relaxed she didn’t even notice the intimate contact. But she did.

Regina couldn’t help but melt under the blonde’s touch. She realized Emma wasn’t only massaging the knots from her back, but all the metaphorical knots of her life. With her hands, the Savior had taken all of the former queen’s fears, miseries, and concerns and kneaded them out, replacing it with warmth and comfort. She inhaled deeply and reveled in the smell of cinnamon that wafted up from Emma in soft bandanas.

Before she knows it, Regina feels a pair of soft lips press firmly into hers. She opens her eyes and sees Emma’s green eyes staring at her with immense warmth and light.

“Like you said,” whispered the blonde, “I don’t know when to stop.”

“I suppose that’s one thing we have in common,” whispers Regina as she pulls Emma in for another kiss.