Realizing she knows very little about Zelena (Rebecca Mader) or what motivates her, Regina (Lana Parrilla) organizes a magical seance to bring forth the spirit of her mother and finally get some answers. At first the night appears to be a bust, but when the ghost of Cora appears to attack Snow White (Ginnifer Goodwin) it falls on Regina to save her former foe. Before the end of the night Regina will have her answers and both she and Snow will realize their family trees were woven together well before either of them were born.
The episode’s flashbacks all focus on Cora as a young woman (Rose McGowan) and her life leading up to her giving birth to Zelena and abandoning her thanks to her own duplicitous maneuverings and the actions of Snow White’s mother Princess Eva (Eva Bourne). McGowan proves to be a good choice for the younger, and far more naive, version of Cora than the one Once Upon a Time has presented in the past. Her story, and how it directly relates to abandoning her first daughter ties back into Zelena further torturing Rumpelstiltskin (Robert Carlyle) as the captive Dark One learns her plans.
On her own Belle (Emilie de Ravin) makes a similar discovery uncovering Zelena’s plan to kill Snow White’s mother with the help of Charming‘s (Josh Dallas) courage, Regina’s heart, Rumpelstiltskin’s brains, and the unborn baby of Snow and Charming in order to claim the life which was denied her as a baby. Of course this would also mean Snow White, Regina, Emma Swan (Jennifer Morrison), and Henry (Jared Gilmore) would all never be born.
With all the secrets out in the open and Zelena in control of all but one ingredient she needs to complete her curse and break the laws of time, Once Upon a Time sets up the season’s remaining four episodes. Given the stakes, and taking the advice of Snow White, Regina throws caution to the wind and finally admits her feelings to Robin Hood (Sean Maguire) who she refuses to blame for loosing her heart. It may have taken Tinker Bell‘s (Rose McIver) magic far, far longer than it should have, but (at least momentarily) Regina has given into the love she was meant to find.