A Bitter Draught Recap

The Evil Queen and Zelena go to the vault, and Zelena hesitates at letting her in. The Queen easily bypasses Regina's blood magic, and says that she has already used everything the Dragon had to get to Storybrooke. Now she needs the magic in the vault to bolster her abilities. She says that she's going to use the magic in the vault to teach Regina a lesson, not hurt her. Zelena wonders what she gets out of it, and the Queen explains that she'll get a sister who appreciates all of her malevolent qualities. With that, the Queen teleports away.

The next day, Regina and Henry go to the diner and she prepares to show that she's just as strong without her dark half. Henry assures her that she's the hero and she goes inside where David and Mary Margaret are seeing to the needs of the newly arrived fugitives. Regina welcomes them all there and shows them the Storybook, and says that she's just like them. She's getting a fresh start and she doesn't know what the future holds, but she does know that they don't have to be afraid of anything because they'll face it together.

Everyone applauds, while Belle comes in and approaches Hook and Emma. She says that she needs a place to stay, and she and Gold aren't together anymore. Hook says that he knows just the place, and Emma says that she has an appointment with Archie. The pirate is surprised that she didn't back out, and Emma admits that she's not comfortable with being vulnerable. Hook then leads Belle out. Meanwhile, a man comes in and Henry offers to find his story. He says that he's not important enough to have his own tale, and slips away when Henry turns back briefly to the book. On the counter is a sealed invitation.

The Past

At a party, the man--Count of Monte Cristo--arrives to greet his guests. He says that one of the guests, Baron Danglars, is responsible for them all being there. Danglars wonders what the Count means, and finally recognizes that the Count is Edmond Dantes. Edmond describes how Danglars burned down his house, squandered his family fortune, and murdered his fiancée. Now Edmond has rebuilt his fortunes, draws his sword, and demands to know who helped Danglars. Danglars refuses to say, and Edmond runs him through in the name of revenge.

As the partygoers flee, the Queen comes in and expresses her admiration for Edmond taking his vengeance. Edmond says that he will spend his entire life avenging his love, and the Queen shows him a list with the names of every person who wronged him. In return, she wants some revenge of her own.


Henry shows David and Mary Margaret the invitation that Edmond left them. Regina comes out and says that Edmond wants them dead... because she hired him to do it.

In Archie's office, Emma tells Archie about her vision of her dying at the hand of an unknown opponent. Her hand shakes and her opponent kills her. Emma wonders if she should tell her family, and says that she hasn't because they'd try to protect her. She insists that she's the Savior and if she doesn't help people then she doesn't know who she is. Archie figures that she's there to get his help, and Emma walks out when he suggests that it's an identity crisis.

Regina, David, and Mary Margaret go to Edmond's room and Regina says that she didn't tell them about every time that she tried to kill them. The invitation says for them to meet him at the dirigible, and Regina says that she'll go there alone to fix her own mess.

The Past

Charming and Snow ride across the countryside to a village and realize that the Queen has destroyed another village. They find one survivor and discover that it's Edmond. He claims that he was the vintner there and stayed to put out the fires. Snow's handmaiden Charlotte comes over, and Edmond stares at her in surprise. He then says that they must find the Queen and make her pay. Snow says that the best way to get revenge on the Queen is to show her that they can always find happiness. She suggests that he come to their castle and become their wine steward, and he agrees.


At the dirigible, Edmond arrives and Regina says that she's calling off their deal. He draws his sword and says that Regina finding her happiness doesn't change anything. She insists that he doesn't need revenge, but Edmond warns that even she can't take it off of her now. He throws her sword at her and Regina magically stops it. By the time she picks it up, Edmond has slipped away. She then calls Emma and the others to tell them what happened. Emma drives off with Mary Margaret and David, explaining that she's taking them somewhere safe. They get to the town border... and the car slams into a magical barrier.

Hook takes Belle to the Jolly Roger, and she wonders why he's risking his life for her. The pirate says that he has tried to kill her several times and this is his attempt to redeem himself. Belle accepts and explains that now she's doing what best for her son.

When Regina arrives, she realizes that someone used the ingredients from her vault to create the protection spell. Zelena arrives and asks what happened, and Regina tells her about the protection spell. Her half-sister feigns ignorance, and Regina points out that she's the only one who could penetrate the blood magic. Zelena says that she didn't do it and doesn't know who else could, and teleports away.

The Past

Regina is sparring with a soldier and kills him. Edmond arrives and congratulates her, and says that he can't be late for his first meal with Snow and Charming. The Queen gives him a vial of poison and he hesitates to take it. Edmond asks what they did to deserve a slow and painful death, and the Queen says that the only thing that should matter to him is his revenge. She holds up the list, and Edmond takes the vial and leaves.

Once Edmond is gone, Rumplestiltskin arrives and complains that she's wasting her time using someone else. The Queen points out that Rumplestiltskin put a spell on Snow and Charming to keep her from hurting them, but she'll get her revenge without the Dark One. She warns that Rumplestiltskin can't stop the Queen, and she put the same protection spell on Edmond to protect him from Rumplestiltskin. Rumplestiltskin says that they'll see if she has outsmarted him and teleports away.


Gold returns to his shop and the Queen arrives. She figures that he's glad to be back, and Gold asks where it is. The Queen gives him a coin and realizes that Gold wants to deal. Gold says that he wants her to leave Belle and his unborn son out of it. She agrees and takes the coin, and asks if he wants anything else from her. The Queen points out that the story between them has never played out, and figures that eventually Gold will get tired of waiting for Belle. When he does, that's when the real fun can begin. With that, the Queen walks out.

The Past

Edmond secretly ours the poison into the wine and takes it to the table. As he prepares to serve it, Charlotte comes in and Snow explains that she's going home to take care of her family. Edmond pours the wine but hesitates at Charlotte's glass. He finally pours the wine and walks away, but then stops them from drinking before Charlotte can take a sip. Edmond says that he has a better wine for them, takes their glasses, and leaves.


Regina and Henry go to the dirigible, and Regina insists that she has to stop Edmond's story from playing out. They find Charlotte's poisoned corpse but when Regina touches it, a spell flares. The Queen arrives and says that Regina killing her wouldn't be that easy. Regina tries to summon a fireball but fails, and the Queen explains that she laced Charlotte's cloak with a magic dampening spell. She then summons Edmond's heart that she controlled, and explains that now Edmond is going to fulfill his mission and kill David and Mary Margaret. With that, she teleports away.

On the docks, David and Mary Margaret find Edmond waiting for them. He draws his sword and they try to convince him it's a misunderstanding. He attacks them and they avoid his initial attack. They insist that Regina has changed and doesn't want him to kill them, and David grabs a trash can lid to use as a shield. Edmond says that the Queen has his heart and continues his attack, and David says that they'll find a way to stop her. Edmond says that he hopes so and cuts loose a suspended crate, knocking the couple unconscious.

The Past

Edmond goes to the wine cellar and Rumplestiltskin appears, asking if he's having second thoughts. He asks why Edmond didn't poison the couple, and Edmond says that Charlotte reminds him of his fiancée. He insists that Charlotte didn't deserve to die and if he killed the couple then he'd become no better than his enemies. Edmond refuses to kill the Charmings as well, and Rumplestiltskin says that he needs them alive. He has to make sure Edmond is never tempted to kill them, and teleports charlotte's body in. She's under a sleeping poison, and Rumplestiltskin says that the poison can be stopped. If Edmond goes to the Land of Untold Stories, then it will stop the poison and save Charlotte's life. Edmond agrees and Rumplestiltskin opens a portal for Edmond to take Charlotte through.


Edmond prepares to kill the couple, but Regina parries his blow and says that he can still fight the Queen's control. As they fight, he yells that he can't fight the enchantment, and Regina tells him that Charlotte is already dead. She insists that she'll save Edmond but he continues his attack. Regina's mark doesn't work, and Regina calls to Henry to call Emma. The Queen is blocking his cellphone, and Edmond disarms Regina. He advances on the couple and says that it's the only way, and Regina picks up her sword and throws it into Edmond. Edmond collapses and Regina runs to him, sobbing. As David and Mary Margaret wakes up, henry tells his mother that he did what he had to.

The Queen arrives and says that Regina had a choice. She points out that heroes always find a third way, and wonders if Regina is a hero. Regina grabs her and swears to rip the queen's heart out, and realizes that the queen set up the whole thing to show her the darkness inside of her. Mary Margaret steps forward and says that they'll defeat the Queen, but she says that Regina will destroy everyone's happy endings, and that when their stories finally play out then she'll sit back and watch them tear themselves apart. Satisfied, the Queen teleports away.

That night at the diner, Mary Margaret and Emma assure Regina that it wasn't her fault. Regina says that she could have kept the Queen inside of her, and Mary Margaret says that they have to face her. She asks Regina to think like the Queen and wonders what she meant, and Emma remembers her vision.

Hook and David find Henry at the counter, and he says that there's always a sequel and they're more involved. Originally the people ran from their stories, and now they have to find out why they ran. Meanwhile, David notices an envelope addressed to him on the stool. He opens it and finds a coin, and stares at it in shock. He quickly goes outside, and the Queen asks how he likes his gift. She says that she gave it to him to see how his story would play out. David says that it was a good luck charm that his father wore before he left their farm. When he says that his father died in a cart accident, the Queen asks him if he's sure it was an accident before teleporting away.

At the farmhouse, Zelena gets up to deal with a crying Robin. She finds the Queen holding the baby, and the Queen points out that Zelena kept her secret. Zelena realizes that it was a test, and the Queen assures her that she will never doubt her again. She says that Zelena is the sister she wants and neither of them would settle for less.

Emma returns to Archie's office and admits that he was right. However, she can't tell her family about her visions because she's worried about who would kill her. Emma says that she worries that Regina is the one who kills her... but isn't sure if she's Regina or the Queen.

Written by Gadfly on Oct 3, 2016