This article focuses on Neal Cassidy's Land Without Magic alias. For his Enchanted Forest identity, click here.
|Land Without Magic Character|
|Home:|| New York City, New York|
Portland, Oregon (formerly)
|Hair color:||Dark brown|
|Portrayed by:||Michael Raymond-James|
|Latest appearance:||"And Straight On 'Til Morning"|
I wanted to look for you, but I was too afraid that you wouldn't forgive me because I never forgave myself. There hasn't been a day that's gone by that I don't regret having left you.
Neal Cassidy is a character on ABC's Once Upon a Time. He débuts in the first episode of the second season. He is portrayed by guest star Michael Raymond-James, and is the Land Without Magic alias of Baelfire.
During the CurseEdit
Neal and Emma met in Portland when they both unknowingly were trying to steal the same car. They quickly fell in love and began traveling through the country together and running some cons to make money. They planned on retiring from their crime life and living together in Tallahassee but in order to do that they first had to retrieve stolen watches that Neal had previously hidden in a train station. While Emma picks up the watches, Neal is confronted by August Booth who tells him that he knows who he really is. After that, he tells him about Emma's magical history and convinces him to turn Emma in to the police so she can fulfill her destiny. After Emma is arrested, he runs away to Canada, where he sells the watches. He asks August to send all the money plus their car to Emma, and asks August that if Emma ever fulfills her duty to please send him a postcard. Unknown to him, Emma is pregnant with his son. ("Tallahassee")
After the CurseEdit
Presently, Neal resides in New York City, where, shortly after Emma Swan breaks the curse in Storybrooke, he receives a postcard delivered by a dove. One side of the postcard reads, "Broken", and the other is a photo of the Storybrooke Clock Tower with the phrase "Greetings from Storybrooke", which was sent to him by August. ("Broken")
Emma goes with Mr. Gold to Manhattan to find Baelfire. She brings along Henry because she does not trust her son to be in Storybrooke while Cora on the loose. They arrive via taxi to Manhattan in front of an apartment complex building, and enter the building to find a locked gate with a call box listing all the residents and their room numbers on the wall next to it. Searching through the list, Mr. Gold does not recognize any as a possible name for Baelfire. Emma steps up to the call box and picks apartment room 407, which she notices has no name on it, and has a hunch it is a person who does not want to be found. She pretends to be delivering a UPS package for room 407, but no buzzer rings for the apartment complex door to open. They hear someone coming down the fire escape, and rush outside in time to see a hooded person jumping down and running away from the building. Mr. Gold tells Emma that he is sure that person is his son and that she must get him to talk to him due to the favor she owes him which he is using now. After tailing the hooded person through the streets, Emma eventually tackles him to the ground. They both get up at the same time, and she is shocked to see Neal was the person she chased.
Neal, not wanting to have a confrontation in the middle of the street, pleads for Emma and him to go somewhere private so he can explain what is going on. He succeeds in getting Emma to a nearby bar where he reveals that he is, in fact, Baelfire and they discuss their past. Neal makes note of the fact she is still wearing the necklace he gave her, but Emma takes it off just then and hands it back to him. He suggests that they go their separate ways and that she tell Mr. Gold she lost him. Although Emma agrees, Neal decides to go back to his apartment, as he knows what his father does to people who break deals with him. He furiously stops Mr. Gold from threatening Emma and commands him to leave, but is confused when Henry comes into the room as he does not know the boy. He begins to have a suspicion when Emma states Henry is her son. Neal demands to know how old he is, and Henry says he is eleven years old; which is the exact amount of years since he and Emma were together. He realizes the boy is his son. Mr. Gold blackmails Neal into talking with him as that is the only way to fulfill Emma's bargain. Neal tells Mr. Gold that Baelfire never got closure, so neither will he either. Neal suggests to Emma that they both try to get over the past and be there for their son. ("Manhattan")
Some time later, Neal is trying to build a relationship with Henry by introducing him to New York-style pizza and promising to take him to a museum. Neal tries to tell Emma something, but their conversation is interrupted. While waiting in the lobby of Neal's apartment building, Mr. Gold is suddenly attacked by Hook, who sailed his invisible ship to New York. To everyone's surprise, Neal admits that he is already acquainted with Hook. Mr. Gold tells Emma that the wound inflicted on him by Hook contains poison and the only way to cure him is with magic in Storybrooke.
Realizing that Hook's ship is the fastest way to get back, Neal admits that he knows how to pilot Hook's ship, and arranges for a ride to the harbor. When Emma asks how he knows Hook and how to pilot a pirate ship, Neal evasively says that the land without magic was not the first world he arrived in, because if it had been, he would have been over 300 years old by now. When they arrive next to a large car, Emma thinks Neal is going to hot wire it, but Neal has the keys. Just then, a woman walks over unexpectedly and greets Neal happily. She introduces herself as Tamara to Emma, and Neal introduces her to Emma as his fiancée. ("The Queen Is Dead")
Neal pilots the Jolly Roger from New York to Storybrooke with the aid of Henry. While en route, Emma telephones David and Mary Margaret, to fill them in on what has happened. David explains to them that Cora and Regina have possession of the dagger that can be used to control Rumplestiltskin, Mr. Gold's magical self. They arrive at Mr. Gold's pawn shop, and once inside, Mr. Gold gives a piece of magic invisible chalk to Emma and tells her to draw a magic barrier across the door with the chalk.
Neal jokes around with Emma; saying that he did not know she could use magic, and Emma responds that he did not tell her about Tamara; not to mention that he is the son of Rumplestiltskin. When Cora and Regina reach the shop they use magic to break the barrier, and end up battling Neal, Mary Margaret, David and Emma. Cora and Regina are easily able to eject David is thrown out of the shop. Emma proceeds to draw another barrier with the chalk, protecting them for a little longer. Neal sits in the backroom with his father and Emma, and after he overhears his father's conversation with his girlfriend Belle, he realizes his father is capable of loving someone and actually does love him. Before they can finish this conversation, Cora breaks through the barrier, and transports Neal and Emma out into the middle of the forest to get them out of the way so she can confront with Mr. Gold. ("The Miller's Daughter")
After Cora's death, Mr. Gold visits the apartment to warn them about what Regina has planned for Mary Margaret. Henry is horrified about their possible plans to kill Regina to end the feud. Emma takes Henry to the diner where Neal hangs out with him. He orders him a nice dessert, but Henry knows Neal is in on trying to sweeten him up so he does not try to get involved with Regina. Neal asks Henry to move to New York with him. Henry agrees, and then goes to the bathroom. Emma comes back to check up on them, and is incredulous that Neal fell for the "I'm going to the bathroom" trick; especially since Henry took his backpack with him. They try to catch up with him, and get to the mines with help from Ruby and realize Henry took dynamite to blow up the wishing well and be rid of magic. They hurry off to the well, and almost have a heated battle with Regina, but Henry manages to get everyone to stop. Henry convinces Regina to not use the spell on him, and she willingly burns the paper. ("Welcome to Storybrooke")
Henry and Emma arrive at Neal's place, where Henry asks if Neal could read the book to which Neal agrees and requests that Henry go to Granny's Diner and order three hot cocoas. Henry goes off to do that, and Emma says that she will not be staying. Neal tells her that Hook has escaped from the storage closet, and also that his girlfriend Tamara is coming to Storybrooke. Emma gets worried, with another outsider in town, and tells Neal that he should tell Tamara his true identity. Emma stays when Tamara arrives with bagels. Tamara seems very nice, and upon Henry asking, Tamara tells the story of how she and Neal met, mentioning that he ran into her on her way to work and knocked her coffee all over her blouse. Neal offered her his scarf and said that she could either keep the scarf or call him, and she decided to call him, and they hit it off. When Henry and Emma leave, Neal shows Tamara the Book and tells her about his life in the Enchanted Forest, stating that all the fairytales in the book are real. Tamara, unfortunately, does not believe him and accuses him of still being in love with Emma. Tamara leaves his apartment, telling him that when he's ready to tell her the truth, than he can find her.
Neal witnesses a completely wooden August dies in the arms Marco with his last words warning Emma about "her". After Mother Superior arrives and transforms August back into Pinocchio, Tamara arrives to witnesses the power of fairy magic, and tells Neal that she believes him. Tamara gets nervous when Emma tries to question Pinocchio about what August was trying to warn them about, but is relieved when he cannot remember. She tells Neal that she is here for him, and she loves him. ("Selfless, Brave and True")
Mr. Gold watches Neal and Henry practicing sword fighting with wooden swords, when Regina approaches Gold and asks what Gold's son is doing with hers. Gold tells her that Neal is Henry's father, much to Regina's shock. Regina believes that Gold planned all this, but he tells her that it was fate. ("Lacey")
Emma and Henry continue their now "altered" operation, Operation Praying Mantis. They hide in Emma's yellow VW bug, and hide as they see Neal and Tamara coming out of the bed and breakfast.
Emma and Henry break into Neal and Tamara's guest room, as Emma harbors a suspicion Tamara is up to something. Neal returns to the room, and finds Henry guarding the door outside. He comes in to see Emma pry open a loose floorboard in an attempt to find evidence. Emma tells Neal she is suspicious of Tamara and she is possibly the person August was warning them about, also adding in that Tamara has a list of all the Storybrooke residents and their true identities, to which Neal replies that it was he who gave her the list. He wanted Tamara to come to grips with this place and his identity. Neal asks Emma whether her reluctant behavior is due to Tamara being in Storybrooke, and her presence being a hard adjustment. Emma denies it and leaves with Henry. ("The Evil Queen")
Neal awakens in bed to see Tamara dressed and ready to go on a marathon training run. He tries to persuade her to sleep in, but she reasons the training is necessary so she can be prepared for the upcoming marathon. Emma confronts Neal with the news Regina is missing and goes back to pointing the finger at Tamara. Neal is still very much in disbelief even when Emma notices sand on the floor left by Tamara's shoes, which indicate she has not recently been running in the woods but near the beach. He follows Emma along to the shoreline where Tamara casually jogs up. She explains to Neal the reason for her change of jogging spots from the woods to the beach; an answer that satisfies him but does not keep Emma's guard from lowering. After Tamara resumes her run, Neal tries to be sympathetic to the difficult time Emma is having in his fiancée being in town. Emma fights against his accusations that she is in any way jealous of his current relationship. When she tries to walk away, he spills out the truth about wanting to go back for her when she went to jail in his place. Neal admits he truly wished he did, but was too scared to face Emma thinking she might never forgive him as he never forgave himself for leaving her.
Emma receives a lead of Regina's whereabouts from David after Mary Margaret, with the help of Mr. Gold, forges a bodily connection with Regina and briefly sees and feels everything she does. David mentions Mary Margaret could smell sardines, which helps Emma realize Regina must be trapped in the town fish cannery. Neal and Emma enter and regroup with David and Mary Margaret. While Emma's parents rush forward to secure and clear further rooms in the cannery, Neal and Emma lag behind and cautiously walk the halls. David catches Greg as the culprit behind Regina's kidnapping. When he runs, David warns Emma via phone to be on the lookout for Greg as he is trying to escape the building. Neal is relieved to hear Tamara has nothing to do with it, but his ease turns to horror when Emma unexpectedly is knocked out unconscious by her. Neal is in shock at the betrayal and lies. Tamara fully admits to lying about everything since the day they met. Though she thinks he is a good man, her job is more important. She shoots Neal in the abdomen and apologizes for the action when Emma gets up to kick the pistol out of Tamara's hands. Just as Emma makes a grab for the gun, Tamara distracts them by throwing a magic bean and opening up a portal. Emma almost falls into it, but is pulled up by Neal. Then, their roles are reversed and Neal ends up being the one clinging onto Emma to keep from falling into the portal. He urges her to let go, but Emma stubbornly refuses; stating whatever world he ends up in he'll likely die from the gun wound. Terrified of losing him, she confesses her genuine love for Neal. He reciprocates the same feelings back and lets go to be sucked into the closing portal. ("Second Star to the Right")
- His casting call: "For Once Upon a Time, the role of Jack is being cast (as a "guest role with option"). He's in his 20s or 30s, charismatic, sexy and mysterious, but also loyal and kind, and he's running from his past in a land full of danger."
- He has many vintage items in his apartment: an array of old radios, old microphones, classic cameras, records and record player, old pencil sharpener, old telephone, and a dreamcatcher hanging on the wall by the window (that he and Emma found when crashing in a vacant hotel room). He also has a series of monocles hanging by the door and an odd set of glasses in a bowl by the window. ("Broken")
- The song playing on his iPod during the walk to his apartment is "Charley's Girl" by Lou Reed. ("Broken")
- There is a sign in his apartment that reads "Cleaner and Hatters". ("Broken")
- His name probably comes from the infamous poet and member of the Beat Generation Neal Cassady, who was the main inspiration for the character Dean Moriarty on Jack Kerouac's novel, On the Road.
- The dream-catcher he has hanging in his apartment was given to him by Emma. ("Tallahassee")
- According to his wanted poster, he was born March 23, 1977 in New Jersey. This means in 2001 he would have been 24 when he met Emma, who was 17 at the time. ("Tallahassee")
- His wanted poster also says: "Neal Cassidy has a scar on his left arm from a knife wound." ("Tallahassee")
- He gave Emma the pyrrha swan necklace, which was part of a key ring originally.
Is a Lonely
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