With the odds stacked against them, Gideon and Emma attempt to take out the Black Fairy while Hook lands himself back in a place he never wanted to see again.
Credit: Jack Rowand/ABC

So Emma and Gideon are like… kind of just really a malicious brother and sister at this point. Actually, let’s nix that because there are way too many family complications on this show. We kick off with Emma and Gideon in a bit of a Savior-off, and Gideon can’t handle it because he keeps bringing up his past with the Black Fairy. And y’all… it was a past.

Little boy Gideon actually seems like a sweet kid. He’s reading to his brother-friend Roger, but Roger warns him to put the book away because she’ll see that he stole it. You know the story… the one he was named after. And when the Black Fairy waltzes in and snatches it, Gideon calls it how he sees it — that’s his story. But the Black Fairy tells him he’s not a hero, and to prove it, she threatens Roger’s life in front of Gideon, and Gideon doesn’t step forward.

We flash to the present, where Emma is over this letting-Gideon-go business, and Snow is happy to help take Gideon out because she’s “been looking for some mother-daughter bonding time.” Speaking of mommy issues, Rumple reveals that the Black Fairy is his mother, and then Belle begs Emma not to hurt Gideon. Emma is confident that she can handle anything… Gideon, the Black Fairy, whatever comes her way. But Rumple reveals that the Black Fairy, well, that’s where all darkness comes from.

Elsewhere, Regina is doing her best to undo that sleeping spell on Snow and Charming, but she can’t get it figured out yet. Henry offers to help, but as he’s taking down her magical grocery list, his eye goes blurry, and he starts scribbling in another language, presumably controlled by, you guessed it — the Black Fairy. Speaking of that tricky lady, Gideon visited her on his 28th birthday. Girlfriend is ready to celebrate, but the celebrations are interrupted when the Black Fairy reveals that the key to her vault has been stolen. And Gideon’s mission is to make that person pay.

In the present, Gideon is back in the clock tower, where Emma has agreed to help him defeat the Black Fairy… if he hands over the shears and sword. So he does, and for a minute, things are looking up. Not for everyone though, because Hook is back in his old stomping grounds with Blackbeard, looking for a bean. There’s some back and forth about their past, and it all culminates in a game of cards with the Jolly Roger on the line for Hook.

Back in Storybrooke, Gideon and Emma get to work on taking out the Black Fairy, but when she figures out what the two of them are doing, she sends in a crazy-looking arachnid through a book that doesn’t look like any bug or spider I’ve tried to kill, so you can’t blame Gideon and Emma for taking off when magic doesn’t take it out. Back in the past, the birthday boy follows through on his mother’s wishes and confronts his mother’s workers about stealing the key. Threatening to turn them all into rats, he takes a random worker and threatens to start with him, but the real culprit comes forward… it’s brother-friend Roger! He tells Gideon he doesn’t have to exact revenge because he can help him defeat the Black Fairy. I know this is silly, but you watch: There’s a connection between our buddy Roger and that spider.

Back at the Poker After Dark in Neverland table, cheating abounds and Blackbeard wants that ship. But Hook is savvier than Blackbeard gives him credit for, getting him to open up a portal to send both of them going to look after the Jolly Roger. Oh, Hook.

Meanwhile, after Henry wakes up, he has no recollection of writing in that book or what’s going on, so he and Regina go to visit Isaac, the last author, to get some kind of direction. Isaac doesn’t know too much about these writings, but he may be able to muster up something if he’s freed and given a sports car, and the opportunity to go to New York City… oh, and Hamilton tickets. As Regina and Henry begin to leave, Isaac announces that his author powers are taking over, and he’s not going to help anymore until he gets what he wants.

Back in the past, Gideon has spared Roger for the moment, and when they go back and talk about that moment when Gideon abandoned Roger for what would eventually become the mines, Gideon shows that he has a heart. He admits he was weak, and that he’s sorry. Roger says it’s not too late. If they can reach the Savior (hey Emma!) in another realm, they can defeat the Black Fairy. That’s when we launch back into a mansion, where Emma and Gideon have been spider-webbed in. Gideon pushes her against one of the webs, admitting he created the spider (guys, it has to be Roger), steals the sword, and leaves her to be spider dinner.

Emma frees herself though, because she’s bonkers, but things don’t look so great when the spider wraps her up in a death cocoon. She passes out, and Gideon makes his way to the clock tower, ready to do some serious damage with that sword. But Rumple makes his way to the house and stops the spider, releasing Emma and keeping Storybrooke in one piece for the moment. Rumple is worried about his son, but he’s pretty disappointed to find out that he shouldn’t be worried about his son’s well-being as much as the fact that his son is trying to kill everyone.

Back in the past, Roger and Gideon make their way to that orb. Right as they’re about to contact the Savior, the Black Fairy appears and reveals this whole thing is a test, and Gideon failed. Gideon decides to use that black magic on his mom, but she dodges it and decides to turn Roger into a spider (I was right!) to prove a point, only to step on him (oh, well, I was wrong), killing Gideon’s friend right in front of him. And to make sure that he doesn’t disobey again, she rips out Gideon’s heart, so Gideon never really had a chance.

Post-magic bean, it appears that Hook didn’t know how to work that power so well, landing him and Blackbeard in Neverland. As they try to escape the Lost Boys, they find their way to a tiny little boat. Naturally, being the gentleman he is, Blackbeard clubs Hook in the back of the head and steals the boat, leaving Hook to the Lost Boys. That Blackbeard… what a champ.

Back in the mansion of spider nightmares, Snow and Belle appear, and Emma and Rumple reveal that Gideon tried to kill her. Emma insists he must be dealt with, and Rumple doesn’t take it so well, revealing that he saved Emma. She reminds him that the only reason he had to was because he was trying to kill her… again. Long story short, Gideon the Black Fairy is tearing the whole team apart. Gideon stands in the clock tower, revealing to his mom that even though she has his heart, she failed. And in a way, she did… but also, she didn’t. As Emma was dying, the Black Fairy slipped through the portal and made her way into Storybrooke, scaring the bejesus out of our buddy Gideon.

On the outskirts of town, Regina and Henry gets Isaac his wishes (except those Hamilton tickets, because, duh), and he reveals that Henry’s problem is in the book. Henry flips to the back to reveal that the book is ending. The final chapter is being written. And that chapter? It’s the Savior’s final battle. According to Isaac, no one wants to be around for that.

Episode Recaps

Once Upon a Time

Everything you’ve ever read about fairy tales is true—the residents of Storybrooke are living proof.

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