The Enchanted Forest – Nine Months Ago
In the forest, guards are escorting a carriage along the road when they come to an armored figure on the road. He says that he's going to relieve them of the chest of gold they're transporting, and they ask where his army is. Flaming arrows light throughout the woods and the guards quickly ride off. Once they're gone, Hook removes his helmet and calls Smee out, and complains that lighting the arrows took too long. Smee suggests that they could use more men, but Hook doesn't want to divide the money any further.
Once they open the chest, the four men go to a tavern and share a toast to Hook. Smee calls out a wench for Hook and explains that they chipped in to get her for him. Hook goes off with the woman into the back alley and he pays her to leave. Once she's gone, someone clubs Hook over the head. He looks up to find Ariel standing over him, holding a blade to his throat. She says that she knows exactly who she is, and vows to make him pay for what he's done.
At the loft, David and Emma are trying to put together a crib while Mary Margaret looks on. She suggests that they should focus on Zelena, but David and Emma insist that they have to keep on living their lives. Regina comes in and tells them that she's finished with her new protection spell around the loft that can't be undone by blood magic. Emma says that they need to take the fight to Zelena, but Regina warns that her half-sister is too powerful. Despite that, Emma wants to use her own magic to bolster Regina's efforts. Regina agrees but says that they'll do it her way this time. She tells Emma that she has to fully commit to it and Emma agrees, and Regina tells her to meet her at the vault in one hour.
Once Regina leaves, Emma tells her parents that she'll be careful, and they offer to watch Henry when he gets back to the store. Emma suggests that it isn't a good idea and finally admits that Henry doesn't think that they're fun. David and Mary Margaret disagree.
Smee meets Hook at the dock and wonders where he's been since they all returned to Storybrooke. The crew want to get back to pirating, and think they can outrun the flying monkeys. He wonders where the Jolly Roger
ended up in the year that they've forgotten, but Hook refuses to discuss it. Smee asks why he should stay, just as Emma and Henry walk up, and Hook tells Smee to question him at his peril. Once Smee leaves, Emma asks Hook to take care of Henry again while she trains with Regina. Hook agrees, telling her that magic is a part of her, but Emma says that once she defeats Zelena, she's done with magic and Storybrooke. She plans to take Henry back to the real world where he has a life, but Hook warns her that he's spent the last year trying to go back to his old self and it didn't work.
David and Mary Margaret walk on the beach and try to figure out how to have fun with Henry. They come to a group of people gathered around Ariel, who washed up on the shore. They get her coffee and Ariel explains that she's been traveling from realm to realm looking for Prince Eric. She woke up after Pan's curse failed and traveled to find Eric, and then came back to Storybrooke. Mary Margaret explains what little they've learned and Ariel wonders if Zelena is responsible for Eric's disappearance. David suggests that Ariel talk to Hook because he remembers what happened in the missing year.
The Enchanted Forest
Ariel accuses Hook of kidnapping Eric and he denies it. He easily disarms her and holds the blade to her throat, and Ariel says that she knows that the ship that took Eric was the Jolly Roger
. Hook demands to know who captained the ship and Ariel realizes that he's telling the truth. The man who told her about the ship said that he escaped with the dagger that Hook is holding, and he confirms that it has an insignia he recognizes on it. Laughing, Hook takes it and goes back to the tavern, and tells Smee that he knows the man who took the Jolly Roger
is Black Beard. Smee warns that Black Beard is the most dangerous pirate on the oceans, but Hook explains that he doesn't remember the Jolly Roger
since his return. The captain knows where Black Beard moors his ship and plans to go there. Ariel comes in and demands compensation for her information, and wants to go with them.
At the diner, Hook is playing dice with Henry when David and Mary Margaret bring Ariel in. They introduce Ariel to Hook and she asks about Eric. He hesitates and then says that he's never heard of him.
At the vault, Regina leads Emma down and explains that they're going to start with foundational skills and work from there. Emma admits that Hook is looking after Henry and Regina points out that they've been spending a lot of time together. She's well aware that Emma has feelings for Hook and then takes to an Elvish book and tells her to begin. Emma wonders if there's a quicker way to do it like Rumplestiltskin taught Regina, and Regina warns her that he used dangerous methods. Getting an idea, she teleports Emma to the middle of a wooden bridge over a deep chasm.
Hook assures David that he didn't meet Eric. Mary Margaret suggests that something of Eric's is at Gold's pawnshop, and they can use a tracker spell on anything of Eric's there. Hook wishes them luck but David and Mary Margaret suggest that he go with Ariel while they watch Henry. The pirate talks to David privately and warns that Eric might be dead, but David doesn't believe it and says that they just have to believe.
The Enchanted Forest
Hook, Ariel, and Smee trudge through the forest. She snags her cloak and Hook rips it free, and Ariel complains that it belonged to Eric. Ariel insists that she'll find Eric, but Hook warns that Black Beard is without mercy. The mermaid points out that Hook has a reputation as a hero, and Hook tells her not believe everything that she hears. Ariel tells him that being good is nothing to be ashamed of, but Hook insists that he's a pirate and always will be.
Ariel and Hook go to the pawnshop and Belle greets them. They start looking for something of Eric's and Hook goes in the back. He finds his telescope and uses it to look around, and sees a cloak with a medallion with Ursula's image on it. Ariel comes in and sees it, and confirms that the cloak belongs to Eric. Hook simply says that he thought it seemed like something a prince from a maritime kingdom would wear.
Regina tells Emma that they're going to push her instincts until she masters them. She then starts magically stripping off the boards from the bridge and tells Emma to either stop it or die. Emma starts to fall through, clinging to the ropes, and Regina tells her that she has to reach into her gut and draw on her magic. The ropes break and Emma falls... and then the boards form below her, lifting her back up. Regina says that Emma has been wasting her potential all this time.
Belle casts the locator spell on the medallion and explains that it will return itself to its owner. Ariel thanks her for taking time out from trying to help Gold, and Belle says that they could use some good news. The cloak floats off and Hook and Ariel follow it.
The Enchanted Forest
Hook, Ariel, and Smee make their way to Black Beard's dock and find the Jolly Roger
there. When Smee wonders how they're going to get aboard, Hook walks up and knocks out a guard, and then calls the other crew out. He dares Black Beard to show his face and the pirate captain steps out, sword drawn. Black Beard tells Hook to take his sword back if he wants it, and the two captains start dueling. Meanwhile, Ariel slips around and goes to find Eric.
The two pirates fight back and forth as Black Beard's crew cheer their captain on. Black Beard points out that word has it that Hook has gone soft, but Hook assures him that it isn't true. He tricks Black Beard into stepping into a loose board, trapping his foot, and Black Beard tells him to finish it. Hook prepares to oblige, but Ariel returns and says that Eric isn't aboard. Black Beard figures that he was right after all and Hook was weak, and admits that he stashed Eric on a desert island. When Ariel wonders what he wants, Black Beard says that he plans to prove that Hook is no longer a pirate. He tells Hook to either surrender the Jolly Roger
in return for Eric's location, or kill Black Beard and lose Eric as well.
The cloak leads Ariel and Hook to the harbor and sinks into the water. Ariel realizes that Eric must be dead and breaks into tears, holding Hook.
David comes up with an idea to assure Henry that their fun, but Mary Margaret isn't so sure teaching Henry how to drive is a good idea. They go to the truck where Henry is waiting and David gets in. Henry pulls out into traffic and they end up smashing into a mail box as Mary Margaret looks on in horror.
At the docks, Ariel looks out over the waters and thanks Hook. He points out that he didn't do anything, but Ariel points out that he found Eric's cloak. Now she knows that Eric's story is over but wishes that she knew how it ended. Ariel tells Hook that he has a true heart and will always be grateful that he tried to help her.
The Enchanted Forest
Hook prepares to make Black Beard walk the plank rather than negotiate with him for Eric's return. Ariel pleads with Hook, saying true love is more important than a ship, but Hook says that love only brings torment and he's doing Ariel a favor. The pirate shoves Black Beard overboard and the sharks attack him. Hook then calls on Black Beard's crew to swear their loyalty to him or join their captain. Ariel slaps Hook and calls him selfish and heartless, and says that he'll never be happy. She then walks out on the plank and says that she will find Eric no matter what it takes. She dives into the water and transforms into a mermaid to continue her search.
As night falls, Hook runs after Ariel and confesses that they met during the missing year. He explains how Black Beard captured Eric and he sacrificed Eric to save the Jolly Roger
. Ariel slaps him, furious that he let a man die to get a ship, and Hook explains that he's empty inside and would do anything to make things right. She wonders how she can trust a man who no longer believes in love, and Hook insists that he does. Ariel asks him if he still loves the woman who broke his heart. When Hook says that he does and swears on the name of Emma, "Ariel" smiles and casts a spell on his mouth. She transforms into Zelena and disarms Hook when he tries to stab her. Zelena explains that Ariel was never there and she found Eric on Hangman Island, outside the force of the curse. They've been living happily together ever since. Zelena pretended to be Ariel to corrupt Hook's love and cursed his kiss. The next time he kisses Emma, all of her magic will be taken.
When Hook vows to tell Emma, Zelena says that she will send the Dark One to kill Emma. Hook realizes that Zelena is bluffing and can't kill Emma for some reason. Zelena says that it will no longer matter because Hook will do what she wants. If he doesn't, Zelena will hurt Emma's family and friend. She leaves the choice up to Hook and teleports away.
Later, Hook goes to the loft and Emma answers the door. As Regina looks on, Emma wonders what Hook has been doing and he explains that he's been helping Ariel to find Eric. Hook lies and says that Ariel is going to Hangman Island to be with her loved one. Regina goes to a mirror and tells Emma to check on Ariel, despite Hook's efforts to talk them out of it. As Emma looks at the mirror, Regina tells her to look inward to draw upon her magic. The mirror glows, revealing Ariel and Eric together on a beach. Emma figures that Hook brought them together and he insists that he didn't.
Henry arrives with his grandparents and explains that David let him drive the truck. Regina objects and Emma agrees, but Henry insists that it was fun. Mary Margaret asks where Ariel is and Hook says that she went back to find Eric. She's happy to learn that they finally got a happy ending and suggests that they go to Granny's for dinner. Hook leaves them to it and starts to walk out, and Emma tells him that it doesn't matter what he did in the last year.
At the diner, the family eats together. Hook walks down the street alone. He takes out his telescope and looks at Emma inside the diner.