Jack Rowand/ABC
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April 20, 2018 at 10:05 PM EDT

Nothing Gold can stay.

Rumpelstiltskin finds that out the hard way tonight as he finally, finally gets the opportunity to save himself from immortality and join Belle in the afterlife. In doing so, though, he realizes that the price (there’s always a price!!) is the happiness of Alice, whose pure heart is undeniable. He might have to go back to his usual routine and “spin spin spin” after tonight, but crocodile skin or not, Rumple is not the bad guy anymore. Well, unless you’re looking at it from Regina’s point of view, at least.

Let’s take it from the top.

Rumple begins his mission to reconnect with Belle by visiting his private photo shrine to her. Little does he know, there’s another sly dealer of the dark arts listening in. Dr. Facilier just so happens to be lurking in wait and listening in as he updates her on Gideon’s studies and how much everyone misses her. Facilier says he can hear her, offering to bridge the divide that exists with Rumple talking into the void, so Rumple puts him to the test. His voodoo doll might be able to take down Hansel, but it won’t work on someone with Rumple’s strengths, so he hoists Facilier up by his neck and demands to know what Belle is saying, if he can actually hear her.

Facilier tells him that Belle wants him to hurry up in finding the Guardian — Alice could be the gal, but she needs to be tested for purity of heart. If he doesn’t hurry, he might resort to being a terrible person and risk never seeing her again. Hidden beneath all that family drama, of course, is Facilier’s long-standing threat that he’d like to get his hands on the Dark One’s Dagger and make even worse use of it than Rumple would. 

In real time, Weaver and Rogers happen upon Samdi/Facilier’s path of destruction as they find Nick dead in the interrogation room that supposedly no one else has access to. On the one hand, good riddance to bad rubbish, but on the other hand, Weaver knows this inexplicable death can only be due to one thing — magic — which could spell trouble for his hopes of a reunion with Belle as well. Indeed, when he checks the evidence locker for his dagger, all he finds is an empty box. In his mind, it’s obvious what has happened: Facilier has used what magic he siphoned from Anastasia to locate and steal the dagger.

The romantic front is still warming up between Alice and Margot and Jacinda and Henry. While Jacinda and Henry, unbeknownst to them, need to keep a safe distance on account of his curse, Tilly/Alice and Margot/Robin are free to spend as much time together as they like. So, they do, in Hyperion Heights and in Fairy Tale Land, where Robin gives Alice a bracelet that makes her heart soar. Watching it all unfold is Rumple, who wants to find out of if Alice really is the fabled Guardian who can relieve him of the dagger’s burden, but Captain Hook runs interference to prevent Rumple from approaching his daughter. He doesn’t want Rumple burdening her with the responsibility of eternity, and he’s no good to them anyway, since he can’t even break the curse that keeps Hook from even hugging Alice one more time.

Speaking of hexes, Regina is this close to finishing her potion to break Henry of his misfortune, but Weaver wants to get his hands on that vial of magic for his own use. Now that his dagger has gone missing, he believes that’s of much more importance than her silly family reunion — never mind the fact that Henry could literally die if he kisses the woman he loves right now. Regina promises to help him find the dagger, even if it means asking Samdi, whom she’s still got it bad for; but she’s not giving him that potion vial, no way, no how.

Meanwhile, Margot and Tilly have a great date that really shows how similar, and yet very different they are. Tilly’s been hearing voices all day, but Margot thinks a day spent roaming the town is just what she needs to cure her ailment. The two eat candied fruit and visit the library’s travel section (since she couldn’t afford all the globe-trotting adventure Margot has had, she’s had to let books be her transport devices). Margot promises that she’s still got adventures aplenty ahead, and she’s not exactly wrong about that … (Recap continues on next page)

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