Once Upon a Time

Season 1 Episode 4

The Price of Gold

Aired Friday 8:00 PM Nov 13, 2011 on ABC

Episode Recap

Cinderella watches as her stepsisters and stepmother go to the ball. Once they leave, her Fairy Godmother appears and starts to grant her wish to attend the ball. There's a burst of light and the Fairy Godmother is disintegrated, leaving her wand behind. Rumplestiltskin steps out and picks up the wand, and explains that it's pure evil and that all magic comes with a price. He tells her to go back to her normal life, but Cinderella says that her life is wretched. Rumplestiltskin warns her that she can't handle the magic and turns to leave, but Cinderella says that she'll do anything to change her life. She asks for his help and Rumplestiltskin says that she'll owe him a favor. He wants something precious, and tells her that with her wish she'll have more riches than she can know. Cinderella agrees and signs a contract with him. Once she does, Rumplestiltskin uses the wand to transform her dress and gives her a pair of glass slippers.


Emma and Henry are walking down the street in Storybrooke to the school bus. He worries that they're out in the open, but Emma says that they don't need to sneak around. Henry suggests that they come up with codenames and Emma says just to call her "Emma." He gets on the bus and Sheriff Graham pulls up to Emma, running his siren. She wonders if he's going to arrest him again, but Graham thanks her for her help finding the coma patient and offers her a job as a deputy. Emma says that she'll think about it.

At the diner, Emma is reading the newspaper when Mayor Mills comes in and asks how her walk with Henry was. She says that she doesn't mind because Emma no longer worries her. The mayor says that it comes down to the fact that Emma has seven addresses in the last decade. She also knows that Emma is staying with Mary Margaret and says that people have to have roots. All she asks is that Emma think of what's best for Henry, and suggest a clean break because it'll happen anyway.

After the mayor leaves, Emma gets up and spills her cocoa on her dress. She uses the laundry room and finds a pregnant young maid, Ashley Boyd (Cinderella), crying. Ashley explains that she's having contractions and that no one thinks she can be a mother. She wonders if they're right and Emma says, "screw them." Emma tells Ashley that she was 18 when she had a kid and that ultimately, the choice is Ashley's and there are no fairy godmothers in the world.

That night, Mr. Gold leaves his pawnshop. Once he walks off, Ashley breaks into his shop and goes to the safe. Gold comes in behind her and asks what she's doing, and she says that she's changing her life. She sprays him with mace and he staggers back, hitting his head and knocking himself out. Ashley takes a gold watch from his pocket and leaves.

The next morning, Regina is leaving for a Saturday morning council meeting and tells Henry that he's to do his homework and stay inside. She reminds Henry that Emma is just a woman passing through and that he's not to see her. Once Regina leaves, Henry grabs his backpack and leaves.

Emma is unpacking her boxes as Mary Margaret makes breakfast. She's surprised that Emma has so little possessions and Emma says that she's not very sentimental. Gold arrives to talk to Emma and asks for her help to find Ashley. He claims that he doesn't want to ruin her life but just wants to get something back, so he wants Emma to help instead of going to the police. Gold says that Ashley was rambling about changing her life, and Emma agrees so that she can help Ashley. Henry comes in and is clearly uncomfortable with Gold. He tells Henry to give his regards to Regina and leaves, and Henry says that he came to hang out. He trails along after Emma and insists on helping, but Emma refuses. Henry refuses to take no for an answer and Emma has no choice but to take him along.


Cinderella watches the fireworks and Prince Thomas joins her on the balcony. She talks about how she used to watch the fireworks for afar and knew they were for something special, and now they're for their wedding. They go down and meet with the crowd, including the King, Prince Charming, and Snow White. The King dances with her and hopes that their family will soon be growing. Prince Charming offers his congratulations and then Snow White pulls her away and talks about how Cinderella showed that anyone could change their life. Rumplestiltskin then appears to Cinderella and says that he's there to make sure she's happy with her end of the bargain. Cinderella admits that she did and Rumplestiltskin says that he wants her firstborn child when it arrives.

Later, Cinderella is packing when Prince Thomas returns early from a hunt. He realizes that she's going somewhere and Cinderella explains that she's pregnant. She explains that it was Rumplestiltskin that sent her to the ball and she made a deal for their firstborn. Prince Thomas insists that their love is real and tells her that they'll make a new deal.


Emma goes to the diner and talks to Ruby, who explains that Ashley's boyfriend Sean (Prince Thomas) left her. The mechanic, Billy, is towing away Ruby's car for repairs and complains when she shakes it up. Ruby suggests that Emma stay out of it but Emma refuses, so Ruby sends her to talk to Sean, who lives with his father. Emma goes to see Sean, but his father Mitchell (the King) shows up and says that his son will have nothing to do with Ashley. Mitchell explains that he wants his son to have someone better, and dismisses Ashley as inconsequential. Emma tries to convince Sean to help, but Mitchell sends him inside and tells Emma that he made a deal for someone to take the baby. When Emma says that Ashley is trying to change her life, Mitchell says everyone says that and Emma realizes that he made the deal with Gold.

As Emma drives away, Henry warns her that no one has ever been able to break a deal with Gold. However, Emma insists that Ashley should have the chance to be a mother. She returns to the diner and confronts Ruby, asking why she didn't tell her everything. Ruby says that she doesn't like the idea of people judging her friend. When Emma sees that Ruby's car is gone, she realizes that Ruby sent her to Sean to give Cinderella a head start. Emma asks her for more information, but Ruby refuses to talk in front of Regina's son. After convincing Henry to leave, Emma goes back to Ruby, who says that Ashley left a half-hour ago and is going to Boston to start a new life.

As Emma drives toward Boston, she discovers that Henry is in the backseat. He warns that anyone who tries to leave Storybrooke has bad things happen to them. When Emma threatens to take him back, Henry points out that it will take too much time and that Emma has no choice but to take him with her.


The Princes take Cinderella into the mines beneath the castle where they've prepared a prison. As Grumpy guides them through, they explain that they're going to take advantage of Rumplestiltskin's penchant for deals to lure him into the mines by saying that she has twins. They have had the Blue Fairy make a quill pen that will freeze the user. When Cinderella worries that they are using magic again, Prince Thomas says that he'll pay the price if there is one.


As they drive toward the borders of Storybrooke, Henry and Emma spot Ruby's car at the side of the road. Ashley is nearby, moaning as she goes into labor. Emma drives her back to Storybrooke, telling Ashley that she won't let Gold take the child. She warns Ashley that her whole life will change and that she can't leave if she accepts that she'll be a mother. Ashley agrees, saying that she wants her baby.


Rumplestiltskin comes to see Cinderella in the grove, and she offers to alter the bargain. She claims that she's having twins and that she'll give up both babies for prosperity for the kingdom. Cinderella hands him the contract and the quill pen, and Rumplestiltskin takes the pen and admires it. He warns her that all magic comes with a price, and that if she uses magic to imprison him, then her debt to him would grow. Rumplestiltskin asks if she's sure with the new arrangement and Cinderella hands him the contract, and he signs it. As soon as he does, he's frozen. As Prince Thomas arrives, Rumplestiltskin warns her that he'll have her baby no matter where she goes.


As they wait at the hospital, Henry tells Emma that she's unique because she's the only one who can leave Storybrooke. He believes that she's the savior, who can do whatever she wants. The doctor comes out and informs them that Ashley has had a healthy daughter. Gold arrives and congratulates Emma on bringing him his merchandise.


As the men take Rumplestiltskin away to the prison, Cinderella tells Thomas that she worried that she would have had to go back to her old life and lose him. Thomas assures her that as long as he's alive, she'll never go back to that life again. Cinderella goes into labor too early and he goes to get her some water. Thomas goes to a well but hears something moving in the woods. Meanwhile, the contractions pass and Cinderella calls to Thomas. When she gets no response, she goes to the well but finds Thomas' cloak. Cinderella goes to Rumplestiltskin and demands to know what happened to her husband, and he tells her that he did nothing but that all magic comes with a price. He tells Cinderella that she'll never see Thomas again until the baby is his, in this world or the next.


Emma asks Gold why he didn't tell her that the baby belonged to him, and he says he thought it would be more effective if Emma found out for herself. He claims that she thought that she'd realize that Ashley had a hard life and that giving up the baby was for the best. Emma refuses to let him have the baby, but Gold warns that he'll have to bring in the police and the baby will end up in the system, just like Emma did. Emma points out that no jury will find against Ashley for trying to keep her baby, and warns that some of Gold's secrets could be revealed. After a moment, Gold admits that he admires Emma for standing up to him and he wants her on his side. Emma suggests that he tear up the contract, but Gold refuses and asks if Emma will make a deal with him. He'll tear up the contract if Emma owes him a future favor, and she accepts.

Henry and Emma go to see Ashley and her daughter, Alexandra. Emma tells Ashley that she made a deal so that Ashley would keep the baby. Emma then takes Henry home before his mother gets back.

Regina is in an apartment, dressing after spending the day in bed with her lover. She bids him farewell until the next "council meeting."

As they drive back to Henry's, Emma suggests she use the code word "Pumpkin" in honor of Cinderella. He says he has a better one, but doesn't think she's ready to hear it yet. As Henry goes into the house, Emma starts to talk about being able to leave, but then says she'll see him tomorrow. Henry gets inside and up to his room just as Regina comes home.

Sean comes to see Ashley and apologizes for leaving her. He gives her a present, a pair of baby slippers, and the couple hugs.

Emma calls Graham and tells him that she'll accept his offer as a deputy so she'll have some roots. She wonders if Regina will be okay with his offer and Graham says that it's not up to the mayor. Graham then finishes the call... from the apartment where Regina was earlier.

No results found.
No results found.
No results found.