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University secrets

Chapter Text

Holy damn.

All thoughts of telling the blonde who'd pushed in front of her for a coffee just where to shove it dissolved out of her mind upon seeing the beauty that stood before her. She had luscious, golden hair that fell perfectly with soft curls at the end, subtle green eyes and mesmerizing lips that just begged too be kissed. She wore a bright red, leather jacket, with a white vest top, black jeans and black boots. And her eyes... her eyes were slowly making there way up and down the brunette's body, sending goosebumps wherever they looked at. But Regina Mills was never one to show weakness.

"I... You pushed in the line and nearly knocked me over!" The sentence itself was very whiney-sounding, but she had perfected the regal, classy, firm tone a fair amount of time ago, which excused the childlike moan. The blonde, however, simply just rose an eyebrow, smirking ever so slightly. She moved closer to the brunette, attempting to intimidate her, and relished in the fact that she saw Regina's breath hitch and eyes widen slightly, before she regained conscious control and slipped back into the dignified stance she'd practised since birth.

"You spent that much time messing around with your bag, I didn't know if you were actually in line or not. Anyway, your coffee was still ready before mine so what's the problem?" Regina froze for a second. I'll never fathom how someone with such beauty could be so... rude. Regina wasn't actually sure why she had picked this argument, other than the fact she was bored and had endured a particularly stressful and irritating week. Someone had to cop for it eventually, even if that someone was a stunning blonde with hungry eyes. Regina ran her free hand down the side of her black, leather skirt that stopped a few inches above her knee, smoothing it out and she met the blonde's eyes. She regretted it immediately.

"Miss..." Regina pursed her lips, glancing at the blonde's ID badge momentarily, realising that she was also a staff member, and her name was.. "...Swan. I don't have the time nor interest to continue with this childish debate, I simply suggest you watch where you are going and improve your manners. Goodbye."

As the brunette turned swiftly, gliding away with the poise and composure of a queen; her midnight black, leather, knee-high heels making a soft clicking sound with each step, she heard Emma sigh, laugh slightly and practically felt the smirk. Though it was the knowledge that she was being watched the entire time that the made her exit that sent butterflies to her stomach.  

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Regina was early for her final lecture of the day, as usual. Although, unlike other times, she found herself typing the name 'Emma Swan' into the search bar in her email, trying to find her on the staff email database. The amount of Emma's in the university made her even more frustrated, having to scan through many different suggestions of the same and similair names that appeared before the one she was actually looking for.

Regina Mills was a politics lecturer at Maidenwell university. She was 28 and had been raised in a well-off, though not well-educated family. Her mother, Cora, was certainly knowledgeable when it came to people. She knew how others worked, what made them tick and what made them bend over backwards for her. Though when it came to academic knowledge, she was lacking severely. Her dad had spent his life working non-stop, always abroad doing business deals, spending birthdays video-chatting her, sending small gifts every now and then to remind her that she hadn't been forgotten. It was her dad that had brought her family the fortune that had caused Regina, and her slightly older sister Zelena, to be enrolled into private schools. It had been a couple years after her fathers death - when Regina was only 19 - that she had learned of Zelena's existence. Her mother had cheated on her father a few years before, consequently giving birth to Zelena whilst Regina's father was away on business. She'd proceeded to abandon Zelena at a random orphanage in the south of England. Though it was only a few hours drive, Cora had thought it would be far enough away for Regina's father to never find out. But he did. When Cora was pregnant with Regina, she had considered giving her up for adoption at the same orphanage due to the constant absence of her father, though when he found out, he forbade her from going through with the abandonment and expressed his willingness to keep her, though in doing so had discovered Zelena. He had never invited her to the house, nor made any attempt to introduce her to Regina formerly, but he had sent 'anonymous' donations to her foster family so that Zelena could have the best education money could buy. Though in doing so, the two girls had coincidentally ended up at the same secondary school. Whilst Regina went on too college to study law, politics and economics, Zelena had proceeded to study Chemistry, Maths and Physics. The two had gradually drifted apart, though still met up a couple times a year when life would allow it. Zelena had opted to move to London, determined to succeed and make herself known, whilst Regina had moved to a remote town in the East Midlands known as Maidenwell to teach politics to University students. 
Regina thoroughly enjoyed her job. Though at times, it made her feel lonely. Maidenwell was a small town so she didn't really have many friends there - even though she had many dear friends scattered elsewhere in the country. She also lived in an extremely large house that she had brought with some of the money she had inherited from her father. The house was glorious at first, but the novelty soon wore off and she was left with an incredible amount of rooms that were never used, along with a constant silence that suffocated her like darkness in a bottomless abyss. 
She enjoyed having people to destroy, people to hate, more than having people to love. Over the years, she'd learned it was best not too fall in love. The first time she had completely and utterly fallen in love with someone, she had been left abandoned with her heart torn from her chest, crushed and the ashes burned, scattered and buried over night. The second had resulted in her being rejected time and time again, though played with like a child's favourite doll.

Maybe that was why she was searching for Emma's name now. She was lonely and needed something to pass the time, something to stew on, something to live for. This blonde beauty with foul manners seemed the perfect solution. Regina's heart couldn't be broken if she never opened it up in the first place.

She let out an involuntary noise of success upon finding the blonde's email address, and sure enough, her email account stated that she was a lecturer for law. Funny, I would have pinpointed her as more of a criminal than not. 

Next thing she knew, Emma's Facebook profile was up on her screen and she was scrolling through her photo's, stopping on a few to glance at them for a moment longer as an unconscious smile spread across her face - quickly erased and replaced with scowl when it's presence was noted. 

"Regina?"                              

Chapter Text

Emma watched the brunette as she walked out of one of the many universities coffee shops, eye's unable to focus anywhere else other than on the gorgeous body that had just sassed her for no reason. The taller woman wore thigh length, black leather, heeled boots, a tight, black leather skirt which stopped a few inches above the boots and a blood red top with a plunging neckline, accompanied by a black, leather jacket. Everything about her was magical and just watching her made Emma lose the ability to form a proper sentence. Yes, the lady was slightly rude and seemed quite defensive, but she also had an aura of mystery about her, and the way she composed her self and walked was too regal to not be entranced by. 

Emma had moved closer to the brunette on purpose. She felt a need to affect the brunette somehow and she was curious as to see how she would react to Emma being very invasive of her personal space. To say Emma blushed at the fact that her moves had caused the woman to lose breath for a moment and look at her with hungry eyes would be an understatement. She actually missed was said just before she turned and left because she was too wrapped up in her own daydream and thoughts. The taller woman had an enticing perfume on, which unusually smelt faintly of apples. Her makeup was perfect and her hair was a luxurious shade of brown, falling perfectly into place. She also noticed a small scar on the woman's lip which had clearly been covered in foundation in a failed attempt to hide it. Though, it would have been invisible too anyone not standing that close to her. 

Emma teaches law at Maidenwell University, though she had just started her first year teaching there in September - 4 months ago. She'd not met many people, but that being said, what could she expect when she'd only been there for a short amount of time? All the students are continuously studying and the lecturers are always either in lectures, or planning one. She didn't really mind though -the distraction of organising lectures and educating university students was the thing Emma needed and longed for. Social interaction was near the bottom of her list.

The blonde had 2 hours until her next lecture, so she had opted for enjoying a coffee and a cheese toastie for a while to relax. She eventually moved from the spot she'd been left standing in and made her way past the counter and to the left, finding an empty table in a secluded corner where the floor to ceiling glass windows let in incredible amount of sunlight. Emma was never one for social interaction, deciding against trusting people enough to let them into her life. She'd grown up in foster care, being thrown between families. Each time they promised she'd never feel alone again, they promised she'd be there forever, they promised to always love her. Every promise was always broken. Hence why Emma only had one person that she could call a 'friend' - Killian Jones. He was a friend since college, who now worked as a police officer in Skegness. They'd meet up occasionally for drinks, but they'd stopped meeting up so often when Killian had expressed his love for Emma one night, which had resulted in Emma feeling very awkward and having to come out to him. He hadn't taken it well in his drunk state and kicked off, leaving Emma stood in the middle of a nightclub in Lincoln feeling extremely embarrassed and angry. Needless to say, she punched Killian and knocked him clean out. That was late summer, they haven't spoken since. Other people had come close to friendship, but no one ever stuck around for long. She'd had her fair share of short flings and one-night-stands, of course. But everything always stopped when the other person realised that Emma didn't, and couldn't, trust them. Not yet, maybe not ever. 

The waitress delivered Emma's toastie and coffee, knocking Emma out of her thoughts about the woman from earlier and bringing her back to reality. She had a trip to plan for her students. She's been planning a trip for them too go to London for one or two weeks to do things such as a tour of the houses of parliament, as well as participating in many educational activities within them, attending talks and court sessions at the Old Bailey, visiting the Royal Courts of Justice and many more. 

After finishing off her lunch, Emma reached into her small, off the shoulder bag and pulled out her phone, bringing up the memo she had with the draft of her plan for the trip on. It included prices, dates, accomodation, transport, activities - everything. The only issue was the fact that the University had strict rules on making sure the cost was worth it for the amount of people going... it wasn't. At this rate, she'd have too ask her students to pay over £300 for the trip, and she already knew most of them would refuse which would make the cost even higher for those who did want to go. The university could only fund so much. She decided to try her luck anyway and sent the notes attached into an email to her head of department - Mary Margaret. 

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A few hours later and Emma was about ready to leave for the day. Her last lecture of the day had gone perfectly and today was the one day of the week when she finished at a reasonable hour. She was heading out of the lecture hall and down the corridor that lead past the open plan library on the right and various vending machines and coffee machines in between lecture hall doors on the left when she saw a familiar brunette strutting down the hallway in front of her, apparently oblivious to the blonde frozen a few feet behind her, staring. She had no idea who this woman was, hell, she hadn't even thought to check the woman's ID badge for any indication as to whether she was even a student or a member of staff - which she was no kicking herself for. She couldn't possibly be checking out a student, right? At least there was one good thing - the brunette was in the same building as she, entering one of the lecture halls, which meant she was part of her department - staff or not. Please let her be staff. The brunette in question, paused at the entrance to the lecture theatre, reaching down to adjust her boots slightly. The boots alone were enough to pique Emma's interest - they looked absolutely perfect on that particular woman, complimenting her slim, long legs and allowing a significant gap between the top of them and the questionable-length skirt. Emma couldn't divert her eyes... the boots led up to the skirt, which damn... which was so tight, and looked so good, that Emma actually momentarily stopped breathing. She could practically smell the gorgeous, apple scented perfume from where she was stood. Bloody apples, now every time I eat one I'll be picturing her.

She actually sighed a little when the brunette disappeared into the theatre.

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Mary-Margaret had always been deemed the nicest person in the department. She loved resolving conflict and fixing issues, which was lucky considering she was head of department, so it kind of made it her job. Hence why when she received Emma's email with the notes for the never-going-to-be-approved-trip, along with an overly dramatic paragraph in which she practically begged for a solution so that the trip could go ahead, Mary-Margaret practically squealed with excitement. She'd spent hours that day trying to find a way to either cut costs or increase the amount of students going without the cost increasing too much with it.

People always say that the best idea's come to you when you least expect it, and whilst she was on a coffee break, she nipped into Regina Mills' room and soon found the solution she had been searching for...

Chapter Text

"Regina?"

Shit. Regina quickly closed the Facebook page and turned to look at the owner of the voice behind her - the one who more than likely noticed that Regina was looking through a fellow staff member's - or, oh god, a students - Facebook page. Behind her stood Mary-Margaret. A slightly younger woman, with short, midnight black hair cut into a neat pixie-cut. She was a friend of Regina's, but also more importantly, her boss. Although, as far as bosses went, Mary-Margaret is quite a laid back one - too unwilling to have people dislike her too actually enforce major rules. She was chirpy and always hopeful. A trait which drove Regina mad. Though Mary-Margaret's friendship was sometimes beneficial and she always provides reasonable advice.

"Hello, Mary-Margaret. What can I do for you?" The older woman sat with a visibly forced smile on, consciously controlling her breathing and trying with all her might to not stumble over her words.

"I... Do you know Emma Swan?" Her eyebrows rose slightly, and she wore a small smirk, whilst Regina sat there deciding which way was best to go about this. She couldn't lie - Mary-Margaret might ask Emma if they know each other, which of course would result in a no. 

"No, not really. I bumped into her today and decided to check her out a bit." Noticing the smile on Mary-Margaret's lips increase even more, she added, "She looked familiar. That's all."

"Hmm." It was obvious Mary-Margaret didn't believe the last part of the sentence at all. "Well, either way, you have given me an idea! Do not interrupt, okay? No matter how much you may want to." Regina felt like a child that's just been told off, with Marty-Margaret staring at her, arms crossed.

"Yes."

"So, Emma is the Law lecturer. She has been planning a trip for her students for a while and emailed me the draft earlier today. However, I will have to deny it because it will cost far too much, no matter how much I want to grant her it. Walking in here and seeing you looking her up, clearly with some interest in her, gave me an idea-"

"No, I-"


"Regina!" Mary-Margaret looked annoyed. No interrupting, she said. And Regina interrupted.. just like a child. "If you can do the trip with her - join the two classes for it, and get at least 5 students to participate in it, then I'd be able to grant the trip. After a bit off reorganising the costs, anyway." She paused, and Regina couldn't decide if this was some kind of joke. Take a class on a trip with a Law class and a teacher she'd never met. Too where? To do what? As always, Mary-Margaret had left her very much in the dark. "So, what do you say? Of course, it would be double-pay for you as you'd technically be working day and night. I will be granting a week for the trip. And it is too London. I will ask Emma too fill you in. I might even suggest doing it over a coffee." Mary-Margaret winked. And Regina momentarily stopped breathing. 

This would be a good way to get to know the blonde, and get out of Maidenwell for a while. She couldn't remember the last time she left the small town, let alone go out with someone else. 

"Yes, okay." The younger woman's face lit up.

"Perfect! I knew how much Emma wanted this trip and I was dreading having to tell her she couldn't go ahead with it. Regina, you're like her knight in shining armour, fairy godmother!" And with that, she dissapeared out of the room with a smile so bright, Regina was sure that the space station could see it.

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As the last student left her room, Regina sighed with relief. Her day was finally over. She wanted nothing more than to go home, pour herself a glass of wine and relax. She began to take her hair out of the extravagant hairstyle she had worn today. Her dark, brown hair was split into two halves - one half pulled up in twists to form a crown-like bun near the top of her head, with a plait bordering the bottom of it. The other half was left in small, controlled waves emerging from beneath the crown and trailing down the back of her neck and down her upper back. A few tendrils had fell loose by now and were framing either side of her face. She removed the pins holding her hair in place, then proceeded to work on sorting the twirls and plaits out, letting them come undone as well.

Ping.

Regina glanced down, fingers still working on her hair, too see an email from Emma Swan with the subject title; 'Trip!!'.

Regina Mills,

Thank you so much for agreeing to do this trip!! Below I have attached the draft of what to do, when and where for the week. There are a lot of free time spaces, but who doesn't want that? Mary-Margaret suggested we stop in a university dorm room which has ties to here. They fit 5 people in each room, so if you let me know asap how many of your students would like to go, then we can sort out how many rooms we'll need. She also suggested we share a room as we're the only two members of staff going, if that's okay with you?

I don't think we've met, so would you like to go to Granny's and introduce ourselves properly?

I look forward to the trip, and thank you again.

Emma Swan.

Regina had to read it twice. Mary-Margaret... of course she'd suggested all of that. She's playing matchmaker... again. She'd begun her little game years ago when Regina had gone through an intense breakup and vowed never to fall in love again. Something which, so far, she's managed to keep up. Well, that's what it looks like externally, anyway. Granny's was a small cafe around the corner from the University. It was run by a lovely old lady who had a dangerous edge to her. Regina had been avoiding that place like the plague since she had had a short, lust-driven, secret fling with the old ladies granddaughter, Ruby, who works as a waitress there... and is about 6 years younger than Regina. No matter her reasons for avoiding the cafe, she still ended up agreeing to meet Emma there for a coffee. She did need to get to know the blonde, they will be spending an entire week with each other, after all. Speaking off which, Regina still didn't know when the trip will be. She made a mental note to ask later.

Regina was growing impatient. Emma was already 10 minutes late, and Regina on her second cup of coffee. She was about to leave when she saw the blonde rush through the door and practically fling herself onto the seat opposite Regina. 

"10 minutes late, Miss Swan." She rose and eyebrow at the woman in front of her, hoping to get her to realise how displeased she was.

"Yeah, I'm so sorry!" Regina noticed the lack of an excuse and briefly smiled at it. At least she didn't attempt to fool me with a ridiculous excuse. "I was hoping we could go over some more of the details for the trip, and maybe get to know each other a bit more? We will be with each other for two weeks, and I don't exactly know you... at all."

"Of course, dear." Emma was opening an A4, black folder and flipping through to a specific page that was covered in unorganised colours, arrows and writing. "Firstly, do you have an idea of when this trip will be?"

"Of course! I've pinpointed three dates that would be best, but was thinking you could double check them against your own availability?" She paused, waiting for a reaction from Regina and continued when she received a nod. "So, there's Friday the 18th of January until Friday the 25th of January, Wednesday the 23rd of January until Wednesday the 30th of January or Thursday the 7th of February until Thursday the 14th of February. What do ya think?"

"Perhaps Friday the 18th would be better, I think the students would prefer to go on the Friday and enjoy the night life of London after a long trip on a coach or train." Emma nodded in agreement and made more notes in her book. "Speaking of which, any reservations on a train or coach as of yet?"

"Nope."

"Hmm. I would suggest train - comfier, more practical and faster. Your opinion?"

"The same. Trains are much cooler anyway." The blonde smirked and Regina smiled a little.

Half an hour later and Regina began to relax around Emma, finding her to be quite humorous in her own little way. Ruby stopped by to take their order and winked at Regina, causing her to have to try and avoid the confused glance she got from Emma and the intrusive questions. By the time an hour and a half had passed, the two had come up with complete travel arrangements and a rough plan for the week - leaving significant space for personal time and sightseeing.

Emma had become more comfortable around the brunette as well, letting down a part of the walls she always kept up. She found herself entranced by the maturity and beauty of the woman in front of her, hanging of every word she said and looking forward more and more to spending an entire week with her. When it was time to part ways, they exchanged email addresses and phone numbers - So that we can keep in touch regarding the trip - according to Regina. Though both women, deep down, wanted it to be for more than that. 

Chapter Text

As soon as she stepped on the train, she could smell apples.

"Only just made it, Miss Swan." Regina resisted looking up from her book to gaze upon the blonde who just stepped onto the train. She'd seen her sprinting past the windows of the carriage so could only assume it was her currently hauling her luggage onto the luggage shelf above their heads. 

"I know, I even set alarms and everything. It must be a secret talent of mine - always managing to be late but still get things done." She practically fell into the seat opposite Regina, placing her phone onto the table between them. "How do you manage to get up so early in the morning and still have time to do your makeup and hair... flawlessly?" 

"Well, dear," Regina cocked an eyebrow at the woman in front of her, only then marking her place in her book with a bookmark and placing it onto the table. She hesitated for a moment, made eye contact with Emma, then continued, "I set alarms, wake up to them and ensure I have planned my morning well enough to allow myself time to get ready. It must be a secret talent of mine." She laughed slightly and Emma practically melted. She loved her laugh.

The two had met up for lunch, coffee and for any other excuse they could think of regularly since their first coffee where they discussed the trip. Regina knew she warming up to the blonde, but refused to admit they were friends, let alone anything else. It worked, considering Emma had similar defences up so also refused to admit to herself that she felt anything more than tolerance for the brunette. The dreams, daydreams and inappropriate thoughts about each other that both women had - quite often intact - was fighting to prove them wrong, quite relentlessly. 

Emma smiled back.

"What are you reading?"

"Last breath."

"That sounds really... morbid..."

"It is part of a book series called Morganville Vampires. I would not really call it morbid, but of course, others may." Regina smirked at the look of shock on Emma's face, having to control herself from laughing too much.

"Vampires? Holy shit! I so didn't expect you to be into reading vampire books! I-" 

"Language, Miss Swan."

"Of course, sorry, but seriously! So, what is it about vampires you like? The looks? The youth?" Emma paused, hesitating about saying her next suggestion. "The- the biting?" Regina smirked, again, raising just one eyebrow, revelling in the blush on Emma's face which appeared as she did.

"Well, who would say no to a bit of biting? Besides, from some of the descriptions of the vampires in here, I would not say no to a particular one."

"Oh my god. I didn't expect that either. What other secrets are you hiding, Regina Mills?"

"I guess that is something you would have to find a way of discovering the answer too, Emma Swan." Again, another shocked expression. Regina had never called Emma by her first name in the past month or so she'd known her. It was always either 'Miss Swan' or just simply, 'Swan'. 

"I'm sure I could find a way, or two." This time it was Regina's time to blush as Emma winked at her. "So, which vampire has caught your eye then?" At this point, Emma realised she didn't even know if Regina liked girls, so she immediately felt embarrassed by the innuendo she so recklessly tossed into the air between them.

Regina was too mesmerised by Emma unconsciously biting her lip that she almost failed to register the question, but she certainly didn't miss the innuendo. Does this mean she likes girls too? Maybe it was meant completely innocently. Perhaps I should lie... 

But then again, Regina Mills was a risk taker. 

"If you must know, a certain one called Amelie. She's described beautifully, and if she was not simply a book character, then there is no way I would look at anyone else. But of course, she is indeed fictional, so I may continue looking." Meeting the blondes eyes again, Regina let off a more confident vibe than she felt. 

"I know that feeling. If Adele wasn't famous, I would so be after her. I also think we both just learned something new about each other."

"Indeed we did, Miss Swan." 

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The train journey was long, but to Emma and Regina, it flew by. The two spoke constantly, much to the students surprise. In total, there were 7 students from Regina's lectures, Josh, Rebecca, Ginnifer, Jared, Sean, Meghan and Victoria and 8 from Emma's; Lana, Colin, Jennifer, Emilie, Robert, Raphael, Robbie and Rose.. Unknown to the teachers, the students were listening in every so often, catching a few innuendos and talking amongst themselves, discussing theories about Emma and Regina's 'friendship'. One student suggested they were already together. 

"Of course not! Did you not hear their conversation earlier? They only just found out each other is gay!" Lana, spoke up.

"I did not expect Mills to like women, kinda gutted really." Sean pretended to wipe a tear away.

"Oh please, Sean." Another female, this time Rebecca, hit Sam on the arm playfully," You never had a chance with her. She is so out of your league."

"Shut up guys! Somethings happening!" Everyone immediately shut up, eyes glued on the teachers ahead. 

"I'm sure you had loads of people after you in school! I mean, look at you." Emma's voice was loud as ever, making it easy for the students to hear, although Regina's voice was far less easy to hear. Instead, all they saw was Emma blush, yet again.

It was about an hour later when the students attention was back on the two older women, this time not because of words, but because of actions. Regina's hands were intertwined with Emma's, in a sort of intimate comforting way. They were talking about something so private, that Emma even lowered her voice for once, much to the students displeasure. 

"What do you think they're talking about?" Lana was the first to break the silence.

"I don't know, but I think it's something to do with Emma. Look how sad she looks." Colin was focused on the scene unfolding ahead of them.

"What do you think is gonna happen between them too?"Jennifer sounded excited.

"I'm betting £20 they get together by the end of the day." Colin immediately placed a £20 note on the table.

"£20 on them getting together by the end of this trip." Emilie stuck £20 down on top of Colins.

"Tenner on them not getting together at all on this trip." Josh placed a £10 note on top of Emma's £20.

"Are we talking romantically or...." Sean piped up, wriggling his eyebrows. "Ow, man!"

"Either, dumbass." Rebecca playfully slapped him again.

The betting continued until everyone had placed their bets. Colin, Lana, Jennifer, Robbie and Jared all voted for them getting together by the end of the night, Emilie, Rebecca, Meghan, Robert and Victoria voted for the end of the trip and Josh, Ginnifer, Sean, Raphael and Rose voted for not at all. They totalled £250 by the end of it and all the money got placed in an envelope. 

"So, what do we do with the money now? Who's gonna look after it?" Emilie had just finished putting all the money in the enveloped and was looking around at everyone.

"I could!" 

"No way, Colin. You're like a bloody pirate - you'll be spending that money like there's no tomorrow on anything shiny or expensive."

"Okay, what about Victoria?"

"No, she's got a shopping compulsion - sorry Vic, but you made me promise to not let you go overboard."

"Okay, who then?"

"Maybe, give it to Regina and Emma?" This was the first time Raphael had spoken up and everyone just stared.

"Don't be stupid, we can't tell them we're betting on their love life!" Josh laughed, but stopped when he saw the look he was getting of Ginnifer.

"Maybe he's got a point. We could tell them we're having a bet, not tell them what it is but ask them to keep the money safe." Ginnifer stood up and held her hand out for the envelope. "I'll give it to them now if you want. The list of who bet which option is in there, right?"

"Yeah." Emilie handed the envelope over and Ginnifer walked towards the teachers.

 

 

"No. Way. You did not kick him out of your classes for that!" Emma was in hysterics and Regina was trying her hardest not to lose her composure.

"Of course I did! Besides, were you not the one who followed a running man out of a high end restaurant just to knock him out after putting a clamp on his wheel? That is excellent thinking ahead, Miss Swan. I am impressed." The two were laughing so much, they didn't realise Ginnifer was stood next to the table until she started speaking.

"Guys, would you mind looking after this for us please?"

"Of course, Goodwin, what is it and who are 'we'?"

"We as in all of the students, and it's an envelope with £250 in it from a bet we all just made. We need someone - or people - to take care of the money until the bet is finished and we see who won. We can't decide amongst ourselves who should look after it, until Raphael suggested you two."

Emma cast a sideways glance at Regina and noticed she had regained her sensible, controlling, regal composure she'd snapped out of much earlier without realising.

"Of course."

"Thank you, Mills."

"Your students call you by your last name?"

"Of course, and I call them by theirs. Why?"

"Nothing, it's just very professional. But of course, I shouldn't expect anything less.

At that, they heard laughter and whispers from the students, and both women noticed all 15 pairs of eyes on them.

"Looks like we are in for an week full of unexpected surprises, Swan."

"Yep, but I know I'll enjoy it." She made eye contact with Regina and suddenly neither of them were focused on the students anymore, only on each other. 

Chapter Text

Emma couldn't believe her eyes when they walked into their designated room. She'd expected it too look like all the generic student halls style rooms, what with it being a university and all. But she was far from correct. The room they had was huge. It had been designed to have 5 residents, but with there only being 2 members of staff, the room had been re arranged. There was now two double sized beds with a bedside table separating them. On opposing walls beside the beds were floor to ceiling wardrobes with mirrored doors. All the furniture was matching oak and a huge smart TV sat mounted on the wall infront of the beds. They even had an ensuite bathroom with a bath and a shower. The floor was carpeted a nice cream colour, with the walls being white. The bedding was luxurious, black bedding with red detailing. If she hadn't had been told that these residences belonged tobacco university, she would have never guessed so. It looked like it belonged in a 5 star hotel, not a normal, day to day, london university. Regina, on the other hand, didn't seem all that phased by the elegance of it all. She simply walked in, claimed the bed closest to the window and began unpacking, all whilst Emma still stood at the door to the room, entranced. 

"Emma? Are you okay or will I have to call an ambulance? Or maybe even a psychiatrist?" She added the past part after a brief pause, at which Emma suddenly snapped back into reality. 

"Oh! Um, no, I um. Look at it! I actually can't believe how beautiful this room is! How are you not entranced?" Emma practically leapt onto the bed, starfishing as she landed. "Even the bed feels like heaven! That's decided, I want to live her. Forever."

Regina couldn't help but laugh and Emma melted at the sound, as she often did. Regina's laugh was silky and beautiful. She didn't have one of those embarrassing, ugly laughs like most people did. Instead, she looked even more beautiful when she did laugh - if that was even possible. She began to wonder how she'd look in different scenarios... with Emma's head between her legs, and Emma's name being moaned and - 

"Emma? Seriously? How do you daydream so easily?" Emma immediately blushed as she realised where her mind took her, and mentally slapped herself. She refused to admit she had any feelings at all for Regina and was trying her damm hardest to ignore them. She'd decided a long time ago not to get into a relationship, not to fall head over heels, not to trust someone 100% ever again. And that includes the goddess standing before her. 

She'd been hurt far too much. One man was even the reason she had spent a brief period in jail - not that many people knew though, of course. She hadn't even told many of her closest 'friends'. That was another thing, she didn't tend to refer to many people as 'friends'. The whole trust issue played a role in that. She couldn't allow herself to get broken, not by a partner, not by a friend. She couldn't do that. 

"Sorrryyyy. It's just soooo comfy! Why aren't you this surprised?"

"Because dear, I actually looked at the photos that were emailed to us before we boarded the train." Regina lowered herself onto the bed, far more elegantly than Emma had previously. She began to place the book she had been reading at the start of the train journey on the bedside table and adjusted the pillows. It wasn't until she pulled out the envelope the students had given them that Emma paid attention. 

"So, what do ya think they're betting on?"

"I really do not know, Emma. Though I would not be surprised if it had something to do with one of us."

"Or... both of us?" Emma noticed how Regina blushed, clearly aware of what Emma had been thinking. 

"Eitherway, we can not be sure, Miss Swan. Not until their bet is fulfilled." Emma groaned at the use of 'Miss Swan.' She really thought they had moved pass the formal stage, that perhaps they were friends now. But once again, Regina had knocked her back a peg or two, as she kept doing once the two showed any sign of a friendship blossoming. 

Anger started to rise inside of her, as it always did whenever she was hurting. She tried to calm herself down by gripping the quilts, but it only made her more restless. 

"I'm off for a run."

"In this weather? Swan, it is raining and quite cold. You will most likely catch something."

"Do I look like I care?" Emma was already swapped her shoes to a pair more comfortable for running in and knew that she'd said that last part with a bit too much harshness in her voice, but she really couldn't care less. 

"Fine. Go ahead. Get cold, get wet, do whatever you think is best, because of course you know what that is. But I swear to god Emma, if you wake up tomorrow complaining about being ill and saying that you can not participate in the trip tomorrow, then I will drag you out of that bed in your bloody pyjamas and haul you outside." With that, Regina practically vanished with how fast she left the room. 

Emma sighed, but the feelings of guilt were overpowered by her anger. She had to get out. 

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Chapter Text

"Or... both of us?" Regina had panicked. She had blushed. She could not believe she was blushing, simply because Emma had absent-mindedly insinuated something between the two of them. 

She could never allow Emma too know how she felt. Hell, she could never admit to herself how she felt. She had been in love before and it had not ended well. The most recent had left her with a painful emptiness inside of her, one she was still struggling with. No matter how hard she tried, her mind took her back. Back to the pain, the tears, the heartbreak. But worst of all, it took her back to the happiness, the good times, the pure love.

Love was weakness. This was something she had decided long ago. Love is weakness, and weakness is something she can never show. Weakness makes people vulnerable, and she can never be vulnerable. For when one is vulnerable, one gets hurt, destroyed. They lose their self. Regina could not afford that. 

So it was decided, she would not show vulnerability. Not infront of Emma. That included, not calling her Emma. She referred to people by their surname for a reason - it kept her distant, separated from them. It reminded her not to get too close, because if she did... no. 

"Eitherway, we can not be sure, Miss Swan. Not until their bet is fulfilled." Regina hated the use of Emma's surname, perhaps because she just knew it was fake. More so because she enjoyed being close to Emma, feeling like a friend... feeling like a little more than a friend. But she also knew that that could never happen. Not if she wanted to remain sane, and content. 

Regina saw the pain flash across Emma's face, and it took everything within her not to reach out and touch her hand, reassure her that she does not actually hate her, perhaps even bare her soul. But of course, as always, she resisted. The anger was far easier to spot. She watched in silence as Emma's anger grew and grew, fully aware that she was the sole cause but also determined to stick to her promise to herself. 

She heard Emma mutter something about going for a run and saw her putting on some different trainers. What came out of Regina's mouth next was nothing more than a blur. She was not really thinking, more just speaking. She felt protective, concerned and downright angry at Emma for being so stupid as to go for a run in the rain and the freezing cold. She knew she had over reacted, but hating someone is easier than loving them, so being angry will hopefully push Emma away. Which, yes, will hurt, but at least it will be beneficial... eventually.

Regina had sped out of the room as soon as she had realised how harsh she had been. Not even looking at where she was going, she found herself on a bench outside, under a smoking shelter. Regina was not one too smoke publicly, but today? She could not say no. She pulled a cigarette from a packet in her pocket and lit it, allowing the nicotine to calm her down. The rain was coming down heavy, but the sun was managing to peak through the dark clouds. Puts a whole new meaning to 'every grey cloud has a silver lining'.

She must have been sat there for quite a while because by the time she had snapped put of her thoughts, the rain had stopped and it was getting dark. Her face was stained with tear streaks, which she furiously wiped at with her hand - annoyed that she had let herself cry in an open area. Not long later, she spotted Colin and Sean walking her way.

"Where's Emma, Mills?"

"Yeah, she not with you?" Colin was looking around the area, as if Emma would randomly pop up from behind a tree.

"No. She... went for a run." Regina stood up, straightening her outfit as she did and deliberately not making eye contact with either of the two students. "Now, if you do not mind, I am going back to my room."

As she started walking away, Colin's voice stopped her in her tracks.

"We're all off out for the night if you want to come. Of course, it would be purely coincidental that we saw you out. You wouldn't have like, come out with us if anyone asks." Regina sighed, she knew Colin would not let this rest. 

"O'donoghue, you know I can not."

"Oh, come on Mills. It's just one night, no one will know. Besides, I don't see Emma around."

He had a point. For all she knew, Emma could be out having fun whilst she was here wallowing in self pity. 

"Fine. When will you be leaving?"

"In 20."

"Okay." With that, she turned and walked towards her room, with the sole intention of dressing to impress. 

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Regina was on her 7th Jagerbomb of the night. She had already consumed 4 double vodka and lemonade, two glasses of pink gin and lemonade and 4 random shots during games of shot roulette. Emma was just starting to fade from her mind, though now someone else had caught her eye. 

"She is so checking you out." Emilie was probably the most sober one out of the group, and that was saying something. The woman she was referring to was a tall woman with long blonde hair, falling in waves down her back. In her drunken state, this woman looked stunning and Regina soon found herself gazing. 

"Go upto her!" This time, Sean was practically shoving her put of her seat. 

"Guys, ssshhhh!!!" Regina hushed the group as she noticed the mystery woman making her way over to her. 

"Hey. Names Maleficent. I know, parents loved disney. Yours?"

"Regina."

"Well, do you want a drink, Regina?" Maleficent winked and led her off to the bar, ordering them both another round of shots. Before Regina knew it, they were dancing. 

"So, what brings you here?"

"Messy emotions. You?"

"Looking for someone hot. I think I found her." Maleficents eyes sparkled and she began to lead Regina of to the side of the room. "What do you think?"

Regina could barely breathe. Maleficent had her against the wall, faces nearly touching. She felt her hand making it's way down Regina's side, sliding round to cup her bum. She felt Maleficents lips against hers, her hands exploring Regina's body with desperation. Regina's breath hitched as she felt Maleficent reach underneath the brunettes dress, caressing the inside of her thighs, her other hand exploring Regina's breasts.

"No, stop." Regina began to push her away, trying to remove Maleficent from her. She wanted a distraction, but not this. Not now. "Maleficent. Stop. I don't want this."

"Babe." Maleficent leant in for another kiss.

Before Regina could say another word, Maleficent went flying. She got knocked over, flat on her side. 

"When she says no, she means no you BITCH!" It took Regina a moment to recognise the woman currently screaming at Maleficent. It wasn't until the woman swung at Maleficent - and landed a pretty solid punch - that she realised who it was.

"Emma?"

Chapter Text

"Emma... stop!" Regina grabbed Emma's arm, pulling her away from the scene that had caught quite a lot of peoples attention. "We will get thrown out if you carry on!"

"What? I just saved your ass and this is how you repay me?" Regina could think of a variety of ways to repay the blonde, though not one should happen in the middle of a nightclub. 

The two were stood so close to each other, Regina could feel Emma's breath. She glared into Emma's eyes, immediately regretting it when she felt heat shoot straight to her core. The two stood like that for quite some time, Regina's hand still holding Emma's arm, until, finally, Emma broke the stare. 

"Maybe we should.." She gestured to the door, but Regina, in her drunken gaze, was far too concerned with finishing that sentence, and not in an innocent way. She leant forward and gently kissed Emma, drunk confidence rising. She felt Emma's hand cup the back of her hair, pulling her closer, whilst the other was on her lower back. Their tongues explored each other with undignified lust and hunger. Regina had one hand buried in the blondes hair, whilst the other explored the body of a goddess. She let out a small moan when she felt Emma's leg push between her thighs and heard a similar sound rise out of Emma. Her hand made it's way down Emma's front and into the top if her jeans. She heard Emma moan - a sound she would never tire off - and felt a hot wetness greet her fingers. 

"What - what are we doing. Hell, Emma, I barely know you!" Regina backed away, quite suddenly, as soon as she realised where they were heading. She was cursing the alcohol, and with one brief look around, she spotted the students all staring, some smiling, some being teased by others. She hated herself for giving in, for showing weakness. For being driven by lust. God. She could play people for all I know. She could be a one night stand expert. She could be just as drunk as I. 

"Regina... I... you kissed me! I don't understand. What happened?" Emma stood startled for a moment as Regina turned and rand straight out of the nightclub before quickly following. 

"What happened? What happened was I just made out with you in the middle of a nightclub, infront of the students!"

"Shit. They were in there?"

"Of course they were! This is a nightclub and they are students!"

'Okay, calm down!" Emma sounded caring, and it made Regina immediately feel guilty. She could not deny that she enjoyed it in there. That she loved kissing her, touching her. But she had to. It was just the alcohol talking, right? She will regret it in the morning. Of course she will. Everyone has mistakes like this on nights out, ine night stands are a pure example. 

Just the thought of a one night stand sent heat shooting through Regina. She wanted Emma, she needed her. Not that she would ever dream of admitting that to herself when sober. 

"I can't do this Emma. I just can't. I'm sorry, I'm really, really, sorry. I... I'm not strong enough." Regina did her vanishing act again, and disappeared at the speed of light with the sole intention of calling a taxi, getting back to the room and falling asleep before Emma did. 

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Emma couldn't believe her ears. She was sure she'd never heard Regina use contractions of words... ever... 

Her eyes stung and her head hurt. Her night had made her feel okay with telling Regina how she truly felt. She'd come to terms with it, and that small makeout session made her more confident. But then she'd just... ran. Literally. And she didn't know why. 

Emma played back in her head what Regina had said. About not being strong enough, not being able to do this. But do what? She laughed to herself at the fact Regina thought she wasn't strong enough. She'd spoken to enough people since she'd ran into Regina in the university to know that if anyone was strong as hell, it was her. 

She felt herself wanting to know her, understand her, comfort her. She wanted to be there for her, and not just as a colleague. As a friend, and, maybe, a bit more?

"Emma! Where'd mills go?" Lana came round the corner with Rebecca and Jared. 

"She um, went back to the room."

"Aren't you gonna follow her?"

"I don't think she'll want that, Lana." 

"Looks like you two were wrong!" Rebecca smirked at Lana and Jared, clearly knowing something that Emma didn't. 

"What're you all upto then?" Emma crossed her arms and tried to look authoritative, but failed. Miserably. 

"Oh, nothing. We saw you in there though. You two clearly have something. You should go back to her." Jared spoke up, clearly planning something and clearly thinking about something.

"Alright kid, that's enough. See you in the morning you three." Emma walked off, laughing to herself at the nerves of the students. 

It was what Jared said that played on Emma's mind. 

Maybe he was right.