Shortly after the Dark Curse has been broken, Regina opens her door to Dr. Whale and a large crowd of embittered townspeople. She attempts to scare them with magic, but is not able to channel her powers. Emma, David, Henry and Mary Margaret intervene on her behalf, locking Regina in a cell in the sheriff station as a safety precaution. She is happy to know it was Henry's concern for her that prompted Emma and her parents to help. After they depart, Mr. Gold, in an act of revenge over Belle, marks Regina with a medallion and sends a Wraith to suck out her soul. Again, she is rescued in time by Emma and her parents. Since the Wraith cannot be killed, Regina produces Jefferson's magical hat to send it through a portal. She is not able to get the hat it work, though it activates by Emma's touch. They draw the Wraith into the portal, but Emma falls in as Mary Margaret hastily follows after her daughter. The portal closes before David can follow too, to which he furiously confronts Regina about where they went. She herself doesn't know, but fends off David by pinning him to the wall with magic. As she is suffocating him, Henry and Ruby arrive. When she tells Henry what happened to Emma and Mary Margaret, he blames her for the loss and leaves with David and Ruby. ("Broken")
David drops by her house to get information about the hat so he can reunite with his family. She is surprised he came alone, though David suggests Regina's earlier burst of magic is an anomaly or else Storybrooke would not be safe with her around. She feigns ignorance about the hat and tells him to go back to Henry's side. While he gloats about her powerless state, she promises to find a way for her magic to be restored and take Henry back. Before leaving, he sneers that if Regina has to use magic to get her son, then she never had him to begin with. Quietly, she leaves the house, but is halted by Archie's offer to be a listening ear to her issues. She rejects Archie's assistance and scoffs that his PhD was given to him by the curse. Regina goes into Mr. Gold's shop to look for her mother's old spell book to jump start her powers. When he catches her, she asks him to hand over the book. He refuses as it wouldn't be good for himself if Regina became powerful again, and asks her to "please" leave. Smugly, Regina notices the "please" enchantment forcing her to obey him does not work anymore, which is the one good thing that came out of the curse breaking. Only when she threatens to expose to everyone else that their land still exists does he forfeit the book. She disregards his same old warning that all magic comes with a price, though momentarily pauses when he notes that Regina, who did not resemble her mother in the past, is now becoming just as power hungry as her. In the courtyard of town hall, Regina opens the book to receive a magical rejuvenation and storms the inside of the building. She ignores Archie's attempt to calm her down and frightens everyone with her newly gained powers until Henry agrees to accompany her home. Once there, he locks himself in his old room and undertakes an elaborate escape plan, but it fails since Regina cast an anti-escape spell. He is quite displeased to be her prisoner, but Regina is so desperate for his love that she is willing to keep him against his will. She reasons that his every desire can be obtained with her magic, and even offers to teach him everything. Henry firmly says that he doesn't want to become like her, which genuinely hurts Regina as she remembers once saying the same words to her own mother. While leafing through her spell book, Regina is accosted at sword point by David. She decides not to put up a fight and allows Henry to go, but apologizes to her son for making him stay by force. She also confirms to David that the Enchanted Forest still exists. ("We Are Both")
Regina has been asked to step down as mayor of Storybrooke. While packing up her things, she received a phone call from Henry. Regina is ecstatic Henry wants to meet her for lunch and runs out of her office. But, she is stood up by Henry, and goes to check the office to find her keys missing. She guesses correctly that Henry planned to sneak into her vault looking for something to bring Emma and Mary Margaret back. Regina sends David to fetch Henry back as she knows he would never go with her. ("Lady of the Lake")
In an effort to better herself for Henry, Regina begins seeing Archie for therapy. Though she has only refrained from magic for two days, she is struggling to not use it. As they begin their session, Dr. Whale breaks into the office and demands that Regina send him home. Regina states she cannot, and then Archie sternly orders Dr. Whale to leave. Continuing with the therapy session, he asks Regina if there is anything holding her back from moving forward. Regina brings up how she once preserved the body of her true love, Daniel, hoping he can be resurrected. Gently, Archie suggests that moving on is not possible until the past is let go. Unable to accept it, Regina leaves to go home. While in her car as it begins to rain heavily, she sees Daniel on the street, but in the next instant, he is gone. Going on a hunch, Regina goes to her vault to check on Daniel's body, which is no longer there. She pegs Dr. Whale as the culprit and discovers him in the hospital mental ward with one of his arms torn off. He relates that bringing Daniel back was a success, but the man is now a monster. While Dr. Whale is admitted as a patient in the hospital, she is accused by David of harming the doctor. Regina fills in him on Daniel and the possibility he may have gone to the last place of familiarity, which is the stables. The two rush there to stop Daniel from choking Henry to find Daniel choking Henry. Despite David's reservations, he allows Regina alone time to speak with Daniel. Once alone, she is attacked by Daniel, who releases her when she says "I love you", and the old lovers have a brief, happy reunion. However, Daniel is in constant pain and has the urge to harm those around him, so he pleads for Regina to let go and learn to love again. As he moves to attack again, she freezes Daniel with magic and dissolves him into dust while collapsing in a heap of tears. Regina returns to Archie's office to acknowledge she just used magic. With compassion, Archie welcomes her back in for another session. ("The Doctor")
While David is busy mining for fairy dust as a means of bringing Emma and Mary Margaret back, Regina watches over a sleeping Henry until he wakes up from a nightmare. Alarmed by the burn on his arm, she hauls Mr. Gold over to take a look. He informs Regina that Henry's burn is due to his spirit travelling to the fiery Netherworld while unconscious as a result of being woken up from the Sleeping Curse. To give Henry control over the dangers in the Netherworld, Mr. Gold gives him an amulet to extinguish them out the fire in his dreams. She questions what he wants in return, but Mr. Gold simply says it's for Henry. ("Child of the Moon")
Both Regina and David awaken to Henry's screams. He informs them of the other person he met in the Netherworld, Aurora, who is from the Enchanted Forest and is currently together with Emma and Mary Margaret. Regina is filled with apprehension at the news her mother is alive and plotting a way to Storybrooke. Hastily, she goes to notify Mr. Gold of Cora's soon to be arrival. With his help, Mr. Gold instructs Henry to go back to the Netherworld and inform Aurora about a special kind of ink that can be used to stop Cora. After Henry awakens from the trip, they learn communication with Aurora was cut short with the message undelivered. Regina is shocked by more burns on his arm. Though Mr. Gold remedies the wound, both Regina and David refuse to allow Henry to go back to the Netherworld and sustain more burns. David volunteers himself for a Sleeping Curse to get in contact with Mary Margaret, so Regina gets to work assembling the ingredients together. Henry comes over to converse with her, and is pleased to know she stopped using magic and is helping others. After the curse is completed, Mr. Gold combines it with a needle for David to prick his finger on. ("Into the Deep")
As David is still under the Sleeping Curse, Regina admits that his condition will only improve with true love's kiss. She is persuaded by Mr. Gold that it's more than likely Cora will be the one coming through and they decide to put a stop to whoever will be using the portal to enter into Storybrooke, regardless if it's Emma and Mary Margaret, so Regina can be the only mother in Henry's life. Before they execute the plan, she lies to Henry about making preparations for Emma and Mary Margaret's arrival and will do anything in her power to keep them safe. She and Mr. Gold go to the mines to collect all the diamonds needed to power fairy dust into a wand. Then, Mr. Gold uses the wand at the wishing well to create a trap to kill anyone coming through the portal. Henry and Ruby arrive to put a halt to their scheme. Regina justifies her actions to Henry because she wants to protect him from Cora. Desperately, he implores Regina to have faith that Emma and Mary Margaret are the ones coming through the portal instead, to which she lifts the trap. She collapses near a tree as Emma and Mary Margaret emerge from the well and reunite with Henry. She receives thanks from Emma for helping them. Regina returns to the pawnshop as David is awoken with true love's kiss by Mary Margaret. Henry hugs Regina while praising her for changing into a better person. Regina has a tender moment with her son until Emma, her parents, Ruby and the dwarves pull him away to have dinner at Granny's. Mr. Gold observes that despite the good Regina did, she is still excluded. ("Queen of Hearts")
In honor of Emma and Mary Margaret's return, a celebration is thrown at Granny's. Emma invites Regina to the party as well, though this displeases some of the guests. She comes bearing a full plate of homemade lasagna and spends some time with Henry. Her lasagna is a hit with the party goers, but other than that, Regina is ignored. Disheartened, she leaves the diner early, though Emma follows Regina out and attempts to convince her otherwise. Regina asks to be allowed to spend more time with Henry, but Emma does not think it is a good idea. Emma's response causes a frustrated outburst from Regina, though she quickly apologizes. From this, Emma explains how she came to the decision of inviting her to the party because Archie said Regina is doing well in therapy and improving for Henry's sake. Though it is positive criticism, Regina can't believe Archie disclosed confidential information, and confronts him at the dock the next morning. Ruby witnesses the confrontation, but Regina dismisses her. Before walking off, Regina warns him that it's good she has changed and won't be using magic to get even. The following morning, Regina is surprised to learn Archie is dead. She is brought in for interrogation, but Emma doesn't see anything suspicious and believes Regina is changing for the better. Later that same day, Regina is affronted by Emma, whose opinion has changed and now believes the mayor is absolutely guilty of killing Archie. Regina denies having harmed anyone, and pleads for Henry to hear her side of the story. Emma refuses to listen and queues Mother Superior to attack Regina with fairy dust. She easily catches and tosses the dust aside, and in a bout of anger, uses magic to physically shove Emma away. Angrily, Emma confirms Henry will never forgive Regina after this and that she is a person not capable of changing. A broken Regina retreats in a cloud of smoke and later tearfully watches from a distance as Emma breaks the news to Henry. ("The Cricket Game")
Since facing the false murder charge, Regina has been hiding in a secret room in her father's tomb, but allows Henry in when he shows up. She insists to him that Archie's death was not her doing, and surprisingly, Henry believes her. However, it is too good to be true, as the facade of Henry melts away to reveal her mother. Cora admits to framing her for Archie's death, and expresses remorse for all the things she forced Regina to do in the past. Though her mother wants to start afresh with her, Regina rejects the notion and instead wants her name to cleared of murder. Regina is distressed at the fact she was trying so hard not to use magic for Henry's sake and now Cora has ruined everything. Her mother agrees to do anything to make it up to Regina, so they drive into town. On the way there, Cora notes that though Regina may be doing the right thing by giving up the true culprit who harmed Archie, Henry will never truly be hers with Emma and her parents around. After pulling the car over, Regina acknowledges she doesn't care about the townspeople liking her, and just wants Henry back. Cora, too, wants her daughter back and offers to repair their broken relationship by reuniting Regina with Henry. Regina accepts her help. ("In the Name of the Brother")
From her mother, Regina learns Archie is actually not dead, but pretends otherwise and shows up at David and Mary Margaret's apartment to insist she has nothing to do with the murder. They apologize for doubting her, and when Cora's presence in town is brought up, Regina feigns surprise. Upon learning Emma brought Henry out of town, she is upset no one asked for her permission. On the streets, Regina approaches Hook after he attempts to contact her mother with a card. She informs him that Cora is hiding from the public to avoid repercussions, and accosts over his past failure in not killing her mother. From gaining knowledge of an on the loose giant who has a deep hatred for David, she sees it as a perfect distraction for the townspeople. She offers up a growth mushroom for the giant to regain his former size and cause chaos in the streets of Storybrooke. ("Tiny")
In a discussion with Cora, Regina fears Henry, even after he returns to town with Emma and Mr. Gold, still won't be hers. Hook barges in to confirm Mr. Gold is outside of Storybrooke as it will be the perfect opportunity to kill him. His vengeance is put to the side for the time being while the three team up to find a particular dagger so they can control Mr. Gold. Suspecting Belle was trusted with the dagger's location, Regina goes to question her at the hospital, though the girl proves to be completely amnesiac. Regina knocks her out, levitating various items out of Belle's purse, and picks out a card with a library book call number. The trio search for the book on the shelves, but it is missing and in the empty slot is a map leading to the dagger. Hook deciphers it, but afterwards Cora puts him out cold so she and Regina can have the dagger for themselves. She proposes once the dagger is theirs, Mr. Gold can kill everyone while Regina will be blameless in Henry's eyes. Regina listens with a wicked gleam in her eye. ("Manhattan")
They find the dagger's burial site from the map and begin digging for it. Cora fears that Hook may have mislead them, but is certain she can translate the map, though it will take longer. Out of the blue, Regina is called to the diner by Mary Margaret for a discussion about Henry. In actuality, Mary Margaret wants to talk about Regina's alliance with Cora, and gives her a last chance to do the right thing by choosing good over evil. Regina rejects the offer by stating she always has been good, but Mary Margaret suggests that all her actions thus far have been evil. Regina wants Mary Margaret to stay out of her business. As she gets up to leave, Mary Margaret pleas that Cora does not care about her or Henry. Regina sneers at her opinion, wondering out loud what Mary Margaret knows of mothers, considering hers died a long time ago. After David and Mary Margaret find the dagger in the clock tower, Regina and Cora obstruct their way out. When Mary Margaret refuses to surrender the dagger, Regina summons a captive Johanna and rips out her heart. During a confrontation, Cora admits that she killed Mary Margaret's mother to put Regina on the throne. Mary Margaret does not bend to their wishes, so Regina, on Cora's command, begins to squeeze Johanna's heart until the dagger is relinquished. Regina stuffs the heart back in, but Johanna is killed by Cora to show Mary Margaret where being good gets her. Regina and Cora teleport away in a haze of smoke back to the mayoral office. Once inside, Regina reacts to what her mother said earlier about getting rid of Mary Margaret's mother. She realizes Cora orchestrated Snow White's runaway horse to bring about the marriage proposal from King Leopold. Cora brushes off the past since it's not relevant to the present, which Regina agrees with as her only priority is Henry. ("The Queen Is Dead")
Regina and Cora are sitting in the mayor's office listening to a phone tap of David and Mary Margaret's phone conversation. After Cora hears Mary Margaret call her a "wicked woman", she becomes so upset she knocks the phone tap on the floor. Cora tells Regina of her plans to kill Mr. Gold with his dagger and become the Dark One herself. Regina questions the motives behind her mother's action, but Cora tells her that she is doing it all to protect their family. Regina and Cora make their way to Mr. Gold's shop where he is hiding inside protected by a protection spell cast by Emma, but they combine their powers and are able to break down the barrier easily. They both enter the shop, and Neal, Emma, David and Mary Margaret are standing in their way prepared to fight. Regina ignores Emma's attempts to win her over. After throwing David out the door, Regina corners Emma and starts to strangle her, but she gets distracted by her mother's fight with Neal and Emma breaks free to grab hold of a weapon. In the midst of Cora's battle with Neal, she drops the dagger. Emma threatens to stab Regina and makes Cora choose between her daughter or the dagger. When Cora chooses the dagger, Emma throws Regina at Cora; causing them both to fly across the glass counter. Emma and Neal then escape behind some invisible chalk. After reassembling themselves, Cora asks for Regina's help in taking down Mr. Gold first, but suddenly senses someone has entered Regina's vault where her heart resides. Regina goes to make sure that no harm comes to the heart.
Just as Regina hurries down the steps of the vault, she sees Mary Margaret holding her mother's heart. Mary Margaret convinces Regina that she was going to give the heart to Regina because without a heart Cora cannot love her daughter. Mary Margaret states that she wants Regina to be loved. Regina believes Mary Margaret, and takes the heart to head back to Mr. Gold's shop. She makes her way to the backroom of Mr. Gold's shop where Cora is just about to stab Mr. Gold to death with the dagger, but in the nick of time she places the heart back in Cora's chest. Cora looks shocked at the return of heart while Regina gives her a tentative smile. Slowly but surely, Cora appears to feel different now that she has her heart, and gives a genuine smile back. But, the moment is cut short as Cora collapses to the ground. A wound appears at her chest while the wound on Mr. Gold disappears. She mutters the last words, "This would have been enough... You would've been enough", to Regina with her last breaths. Regina is horror stricken, and berates Mr. Gold for somehow stealing her mother's life. Mr. Gold states he did no such thing, and then Mary Margaret runs into the room yelling for Regina not to put the heart back. Mary Margaret halts at the sight of Cora's unmoving body. With great rage, Regina states Mary Margaret killed her mother. ("The Miller's Daughter")
Regina goes to her mother's grave and mourns her death. Mr. Gold joins her; saying, "Even though we had our differences, Cora will always have a place in my heart." He tries to get Regina to stop the cycle of revenge and tells her where revenge has got her and her mother. She proceeds to get a spell that will get Henry to love her and gathers up all the necessary ingredients except for the heart of the one she hates most; Mary Margaret. She attempts to enter Mary Margaret's apartment with the intent of ripping her heart out, but Mr. Gold blocks her from getting any closer. Regina has no choice but to leave, but states to Mary Margaret she cannot be protected forever.
Greg contacts Regina to inform her of Henry looking upset and running off to somewhere in the woods by himself. She finds Henry at the wishing well and sees he is trying to get rid of magic by blowing up the well with dynamite. He moves to light it, but with a wave she makes the dynamite vanish. They are interrupted by the arrival of Emma, David and Neal. Both sides are about to attack when Henry stands between them and asks everyone to stop using magic to solve their issues. He asks Regina to give up magic, but she replies she cannot do such a thing. Instead, she is convinced enough by Henry's words that she drops the spell page into a summoned fireball, burning it.
Later, Mary Margaret goes to see Regina at her house. She begs Regina kill her for what she has done. Regina reaches into her chest and pulls out Mary Margaret's heart. She examines it and notes a dark black spot in the middle of it. Regina points out Mary Margaret did that to herself; that there is now darkness in her heart, and it will only grow with time so that the perfect family she worked so hard to save will fall apart. Again, Mary Margaret pleas for everything to end with her heart being crushed, but Regina only smiles and whispers she will have what she want thanks to Mary Margaret. She shoves the heart back in, and commands Mary Margaret to leave her doorstep. Regina walks away and slams the door closed. Unbeknownst to either, Greg has recorded the entire scenario on camera. ("Welcome to Storybrooke")
Regina sees Greg at the diner, and she thanks him for previously calling her when he found Henry in the woods. Greg tells her that it's no problem, and that he empathizes with kids in trouble. She asks Greg if they met before because he looks strikingly familiar. He blows it off, and Regina tells him to contact her if he needs anything. On her way out of the diner, she bumps into Mary Margaret, advising her to try the fish special—a "blackened sole"; referring to Mary Margaret's blackened heart. Later, she goes to speak with Greg in his bed and breakfast guest room after realizing who he is; Owen Flynn all grown up. She is happy to see him, but Greg avoids getting close to her. He demands to know where his father is, but Regina asserts she let him go the day after he himself left Storybrooke. Greg does not buy it as people can't just disappear into thin air, but Regina firmly states they can. ("Selfless, Brave and True")
Regina receives a shock from Mr. Gold with the news his son, Neal, is Henry's biological father. She belligerently alleges he knew about Henry's origins this whole time; a claim that is untrue, but Regina is not convinced. Instead, she gets satisfaction from knowing Mr. Gold won't ever be fully accepted by the townspeople or his son because he always chooses darkness over light. Upon seeing Emma sitting by the docks, she confronts her with the truth about Henry's parental lineage. Emma insists she was going to tell her soon, but changes the subject to Regina herself needing to be a proper mother to Henry before it's too late. Her words perk Regina's dubiosity, though Emma maintains she has no ulterior motives. Undeterred, Regina has a strong sense she is hiding something, and guarantees to find out the secret.
Still simmering over the bombshell Mr. Gold dropped on her, Regina pays a visit to happier and healthier Belle, who is going to be discharged from the hospital. Belle has high hopes of fully recovering as Mr. Gold promised he would help regain her memories. To hinder his efforts, Regina devises a tactic of enchanting a matchstick card of the town bar, The Rabbit Hole, and urging Belle to look at it intently. While concentrating on the card, the enchantment brings out Belle's remembrance of her own false memories. Expectantly, Mr. Gold bursts into Regina's office demanding to know what she did to Belle. Coyly, she takes great pleasure in causing more trouble for him now that Belle has assumed the persona of Lacey, and true love's kiss can help, but only if Lacy herself loves him, too. Because Lacey is the complete opposite of Belle, Regina believes Mr. Gold will have a strenuous time trying to woo her back.
By nightfall, Regina assumes a lookout in a store across the street and waits for David's pick up truck to drop off Anton, Leroy, Walter, Happy, Dopey, Bashful, and Doc at the diner. After David drives away, she uses magic to track where the pick-up truck was driven from in the last hour. Regina hops into her own car and follows the magic tracks to an empty field and lifts a veil to show the rows of growing magic beans. She destroys all of them, and takes only one of the plants for herself. Then, the growing bean plant is placed in an incubator in her office. ("Lacey", "The Evil Queen")
At the docks, Regina, disguised as a fisherman, eavesdrops on Mary Margaret and David's conversation. Mary Margaret is conflicted over leaving Regina behind while David thinks they have given her enough chances. He believes they should give her an ultimatum of either staying alone in Storybrooke or living out her days in Rumplestiltskin's old cell. Regina is angered by the possibility they are going to leave her behind and take away Henry, too. From her hiding spot, she takes off her disguise, and begins scheming to take away Henry for herself.
She is catches Henry off guard one morning while he is tending to his birdhouses, and shows him the magic bean she possesses that will bring them back to the Enchanted Forest. She's upset the townspeople are keeping it a secret from her, though Henry has hopes they just haven't told her yet. Regina fills him in on a special "fail-safe" that has the power to erase Storybrooke from existence. At first, the idea intrigues Henry, but he is fearful after learning she means to kill everyone by activating the fail-safe. Regina discerns this is the only way they can be together as everyone else is always keeping them from being a family. She implores that he loved her once, and he'll love her again, but Henry justifies he could never love someone who does evil things. He plans to expose her plan, but she quickly erases his memory. Henry forgets the entire conversation and he speaks to her as if seeing her for the first time today. Regina readjusts to the exchange, and instead asks him to show her his birdhouses.
In her office, Regina checks up on the growth of the bean plant, and is surprised when Hook walks in. He spills about Greg and Tamara's plan in wanting him to gain an alliance with Regina, and then betray her in the end. Hook would rather not, so he asks to team up with her and Cora for certain. Grimly, she gives him the news her mother is dead. Clearly still a sore topic for Regina, she is touched when Hook tells her the one thing Cora wanted for her daughter was to see her win. Since he might have use as an ally, Regina allows him to see the magic beans, and explains how she plans to leave Storybrooke with Henry while also annihilating the residents left behind. Hook ponders if those who will perish include Mr. Gold, to which Regina swears he will. Together, they head to the clock tower where Regina activates the elevator to take them down and proceed through the tunnels. Hook brings up the topic of how revenge is something he desires most, but once it's been sated, he'll have nothing to live for. Regina thinks differently and believes after revenge, there is a chance of a new beginning. When Hook points the way they should go next, her attention strays to his arm that is wearing her mother's armband. She takes it back and puts the armband on her own wrist.
Eventually, they reach a cave. While Hook is trying to look and familiarize himself with the new surroundings, Regina enlightens him about her "friend" who is guarding the fail-safe, and the magic within the cave prevents her from ever being truly defeated from intruders. Then, she pushes Hook down the pit to act as bait and distraction as she goes to find the fail-safe. Then, she fetches the fail-safe from Snow White's glass coffin. Assuming Hook is dead at Maleficent's hands and the successful retrieval of the fail-safe, she uses the elevator to go back up, but is greeted in the library by his unscathed form. Finally, Hook clues her in that he's been betraying her this whole time, and despite having felt a genuine connection with Regina when she spoke of new beginnings after revenge, he stuck to Greg and Tamara's plan.
Greg and Tamara walk into the room as Regina attempts and fails to use magic to overpower them. Greg lets on the armband is sucking out all the magic in her body, so she can't win against them. He asks her once more where his father is, and again Regina answers she doesn't know. As his accomplice, Tamara pulls out her list of Storybrooke residents and fairytale counterparts to ask which one Regina is, to which Greg replies, "The Queen". Regina doesn't think they have any true capacity to overwhelm her, but it unsettles her when Greg won't say what his true purpose in Storybrooke is. She becomes blinded when Tamara, on Greg's orders, places a bag over her head. ("The Evil Queen")
Regina is taken to Greg and Tamara's headquarters, where she is strapped to a table. Hook looks after her, while Greg and Tamara discuss their plans. She tells Hook that he shouldn't trust Greg and Tamara, and this convinces Hook, because when Greg asks for Hook's help in wiring Regina to some sort of electrocution machine, Hook says that he is more concerned with killing Mr. Gold than torturing Regina, and leaves the headquarters. This doesn't phase Greg, who takes pleasure in being alone with Regina completely under his control. He asks her for the whereabouts of his father, and when she doesn't give him the answer he wants, he turns on the machine, sending shock waves through Regina's body. She refuses to yield to Greg's line of questioning and tells both of them that they are in over there heads if they think that they alone can steal magic, but Greg and Tamara tell her that they aren't trying to steal magic, nor are they doing it alone. Greg tells Regina that some of the people he met after leaving his stories didn't believe him, but others did, and that him and Tamara are part of a group hell-bent on destroying magic. He then turns on the machine again.
Regina is relieved when she overhears that Emma and Neal have found out about the headquarters from Greg and Tamara. While Tamara wants to leave and not get caught, Greg wants to stay and further torture Regina, until she tells him the truth. Tamara lets him, and as soon as he gets his hands on the machine, he prepares to turn it up all the way. Regina finally caves in, she tells him that she murdered his dad right after he left Storybrooke, because she no longer needed him. She tells him that after seeing the look on his face, he can kill her, and he attempts to by turning the machine on full power. He tells her that she won't hurt anyone ever again, but soon David comes to her rescue, by shooting the machine. Greg makes a getaway, while Mary Margaret and David help an unconscious Regina. Later, she is moved to Mary Margaret's bed in the apartment, and fully healed by Mother Superior. ("Second Star to the Right")
After recovering from her stint in Greg's torture device, Regina gets out of bed. She and Henry have a tender mother-son reunion because she knows the fate of Storybrooke rests in Greg and Tamara's hands. Due to the "fail-safe" being activated by them, the whole town begins to tremor. Regina is afraid Storybrooke will soon be reduced to nothing. Henry grows worried they will all die in the process, but Regina reminds him he will evade the destruction of Storybrooke because he was born in this world. Amidst everyone's panic, Hook switches sides once again to rejoin their side. Regina says the trigger can't be stopped, but she can use her magic to slow it down. David suggests if he steals the magic beans back from Greg and Tamara, they can open a portal to the Enchanted Forest, and get everyone back before the town is completely destroyed. David and Hook prepare to go look for Greg and Tamara, while Regina and Emma work on slowing down the trigger. Mary Margaret leaves with Henry to gather Storybrooke's citizens for a trip back to the Enchanted Forest. Before they get to work, Regina makes her last amends by apologizing to him for not being a better person and mother. She reaffirms her love for him, which he reciprocates back.
Regina and Emma find the trigger in the mines, floating in midair, and glowing blue from all of the magic it is sucking out of Storybrooke. Regina warns she can slow it down in time for everyone to escape, but will die in the process. Emma stubbornly insists there has to be another way, but Regina accepts her fate in that it is the only way to be fair is for the trigger to take her life because she is the one who created it. Before she begins absorbing the trigger's magic, she tells Emma to pass onto Henry that she died a hero. David, Emma Mary Margaret and Henry come down into the mines, and inform Regina of their plan to throw the trigger into a portal. Regina is doubtful the plan will work, but agrees to try it. When Emma reaches for the magic bean in the pouch, she realizes Hook only pretended to give it to her, and it is now in his possession.
Having reached her limit, Regina can't hold the trigger back for much longer. Meanwhile, Storybrooke is on the verge of reverting into the forest it was before the Dark Curse was cast. Near the end of everything, Emma becomes emotional and hugs her parents. Henry embraces them for a moment and goes over to hug Regina. As he holds her tightly, Regina states she knows he wishes she had enough strength to save them. At those words, Emma reaches an epiphany; Regina's magic alone is not powerful enough, but together they can be. Both Emma and Regina absorb the trigger's power, which causes the trigger to send a wave of energy through the mines. As combined forces, Emma and Regina's magic save Storybrooke and deactivate the effects of the trigger. When they get up from the blast, they notice Henry is gone. All four come running out of the mines in search of Henry, who is being kidnapped by Greg and Tamara. They are too late to stop the two from opening a portal at the dock and jumping in with Henry in tow. Regina realizes if Hook has the other bean, they can't follow them. Surprisingly, Hook's ship is still in Storybrooke. When they talk to Hook, he shows interest in helping them find Henry.
Aboard the "Jolly Roger", Mr. Gold summons the magic globe to show him Henry's location. When he pricks his finger to allow a drop of blood to spill, it reveals Henry's current location is in Neverland. After Hook casts the magic bean into the water to open a portal, he, Regina, David, Emma, Mary Margaret and Mr. Gold set sail for the land. ("And Straight On 'Til Morning")
As they sail towards the island of Neverland, Hook talks to Regina about how embittered he feels having his sworn enemy, Mr. Gold, on his ship, especially after spending a lifetime trying to leave Neverland and seek revenge on him. From this, Regina is reminded of something Greg said, which is that villains like her don't get happy endings. She asks for Hook's opinion on it, though he hopes Greg isn't right or they've wasted their lives. Later, Mr. Gold announces his intent of getting him back on his own and proceeds to list off reasons why Emma will fail in this mission; not believing in her parents, in magic, or even herself. After he disappears, the ship falls under attack by a horde of mermaids. Seeing as David's efforts to hit the creatures with ammunition isn't working fast enough, Regina scares off the vast majority by conjuring and throwing fireballs. She also teleports a fishing net, which Emma and Mary Margaret used to catch a mermaid, onto the deck. As they discuss what to do with the sea creature, the mermaid sounds a conch shell and threatens them all with death if they don't free her. Thunder begins brewing in the sky; giving the impression that the mermaid called the storms to arms. At one point, Regina eggs David on to cut the mermaid's neck as he interrogates her, but he quickly backs out. She makes the decision to freeze the mermaid to stop the storm, but instead it speeds into a downpour. Regina and Mary Margaret's trade of insults turns into a full on brawl while nearby David and Hook are at it as well. She is so preoccupied in fighting Mary Margaret until Emma purposely jumps overboard as a rigging rope pulley snaps and hits her on the head. As David ties a rope around his waist and dives in to save Emma, Regina, Hook and Mary Margaret team up to pull the both of them up, causing the storm to halt. When they reach the shoreline of Neverland, Emma gives everyone a pep talk by admitting the best thing is to not believe in magic, but in each other. She doesn't expect friendship, but cooperation is necessary to save Henry as well as the handiness of each person's skill. Hesitantly, Regina trails after her party members as they follow Emma into the wilderness. ("The Heart of the Truest Believer")
While the group treads through the jungle upwards to a cliff ridge, they narrowly avoid walking straight into a patch of Dreamshade. Up ahead, the ridge allows them to get a view of the island, but too much has changed since Hook was last in Neverland and he can't tell the difference between anything. They can't comb the jungle, either, because it's not safe to travel through. Though Regina argues against resting up for the evening, she relents since everyone is literally running on empty fuel. During the night, everyone is awakened after Emma receives a map from Pan leading to Henry. The catch is the map won't work until Emma stops "denying who she really is". Regina dislikes playing by Pan's rules and makes a move to enchant the map with magic, but Emma refuses. When Emma's attempts fail to yield anything, Regina snatches the map and places a locator spell on it, which leads them straight to Pan, who then sends the Lost Boys to engage them in a quick paced combat that ends fairly quickly. Afterwards, Regina receives word that Emma finally cracked open the map. They form a strategy to travel towards Pan's camp, though Regina is still unsure about their methods of doing things. Emma reasons they are stronger together in a group than separate. Regina decides to be a team player as they assemble for leaving. ("Lost Girl")
The plan to reach Pan is a failure once when they notice his camp location keeps changing; making their journey fruitless. Hook considers a fairy named Tinker Bell who Pan trusts and can likely get them into the camp with pixie dust. Having a prior ill experience with Tinker Bell, though she doesn't disclose it, Regina tries to talk everyone out of finding the fairy. As an alternative, she wants to combine powers with Emma to take on Pan. Emma refuses since there's always going to be a price of magic. Out of frustration, Regina accuses Emma of listening to Hook because he's her "boyfriend", but retracts the inflammatory statement, blaming the outburst on stress. When Regina, out of fatigue, stops to take a rest, Emma asks about her relationship to Tinker Bell. She only says it's a "complicated history" and all the better if they don't meet again. The two have a shared moment about Henry when Regina brings up her naming of the rescue mission as "Operation Henry". After urging Emma on, Regina is left alone until Tinker Bell steps out to face her. Out of annoyance, she challenges Tinker Bell, who then knocks her out with poppy dust. Regina awakens, wrists bound, in a cave as Tinker Bell blames her as the reason she lost everything. In defense, Regina claims Tinker Bell was the one who wrongly interfered in her life. Realizing Tinker Bell has no magic, Regina breaks out of the binds only to have a Dreamshade coated knife pressed into her neck. As an even better deal, she gives Tinker Bell her heart. Though Regina pushes her to crush it, Tinker Bell furiously asks why she, all those years ago, didn't meet her true love. Tearfully, Regina bitterly admits to being afraid of what she might have become without all the anger inside herself, and exemplifies her blackened heart as the product of choosing hatred over hope and love. She pleads for the ex-fairy not to make the same mistake and promises it's not too late to backtrack. When asked, Regina confirms her love for Henry is genuine, which placates Tinker Bell, who returns the heart. Outside the cavern, Regina exits to see her group members apprehending Tinker Bell, so she quickly approaches to clear up the misunderstanding. Though Tinker Bell no longer has her fairy powers or pixie dust, Emma and Mary Margaret promise her a place in Storybrooke if she helps them infiltrate Pan's base. She agrees and goes back to camp with them. Once there, Regina admits to Tinker Bell that she never went back to find her fated partner. Uneasily, she learns this caused her life to be ruined as well as her true love's. ("Quite a Common Fairy")
At the camp base, Regina listens as Emma elaborates on their strategy for entering Pan's headquarters from the back after Tinker Bell talks her way in through the front. Before they put the plan into action, Tinker Bell wants to know their escape route off the island, which no one has a clear answer. She stresses that no one ever leaves the island without Pan's permission. To prove a point about how dangerous Pan can be, Tinker Bell shows them a watch that came from the people who brought Henry to Neverland, proving Greg and Tamara were killed by him. Tinker Bell weighs the risk as not worthy unless they have a way to leave Neverland and she makes off for her tree house. Emma pegs their chances of escaping aren't very good if they don't even know the way out. They talk about how Hook left Neverland, which was through a special one time deal with Pan, though he notes Neal managed to escape on his own. They set off for a cave Neal once inhabited as a boy, where they find two coconut halves that when combined in the dark, illuminate a star constellation map with an escape route. Despite that Hook taught Neal how to navigate using the stars, he also coached him that all map makers never reveal their secrets. Therefore, the map can only be read by Neal himself. ("Nasty Habits")
With no way of using the map, everyone gives a more thorough search in the cave for something else that might be useful. In the hopes of letting Henry know they are coming for him, Mary Margaret suggests they make a large net to catch a Lost Boy. During this period, David and Hook return from gathering vine to notify everyone about their plans to reach the top of Dead Man's Peak to find a sextant to read Neal's map. After finishing the net, Regina, Emma and Mary Margaret lure a Lost Boy, Devin, into falling into the trap. While Regina entices him with a bar of chocolate, Emma asks for a message to be delivered to Henry, reminding Devin that he once had a home and family but stopped believing return was possible. Though he is promised safe passage off the island, Devin takes the chocolate and hurls it into the jungle; stating he doesn't want to go home. To Regina's shock, he also reveals the cut on his cheek was not Pan's work, but Henry's. Since Devin is unwilling to help, Emma ties him to a tree as he boasting Henry is one of their most vicious new recruits in ages. This angers Regina enough that she moves to rip out Devin's heart, but is blocked by Mary Margaret. To fuel the fire, she asks Emma to allow her to do it. Emma agrees, much to Mary Margaret's displeasure, though the heart allows Regina to send Devin back to Pan's camp to deliver one half of a mirror to Henry. From the other half of the mirror, they use it to communicate with Henry, who is convinced they are real after Emma names their mission to save him as "Operation Cobra Rescue". They head back to their own camp as Regina is reassured by Emma of her worries over Henry since he is their son, and has knowledge his family hasn't given up on him. Mary Margaret is sorry for doubting Emma's decision to allow Devin's heart to be ripped out as she knows how easy it is to give into darkness. Regina arbitrates that she, not Emma, gave into the darkness. David and Hook arrive back, but without the sextant as Pan got to it first. Nonetheless, David announces that Hook saved his life by protecting him from a Dreamshade arrow after they were ambushed on the way to the peak. Regina is handed Hook's rum bottle after both David and Mary Margaret take sips in honor of the pirate, but she rejects the drink and retreats away. ("Good Form")
Instructing Emma on magic, Regina instructs her to channel anger into power. Emma doesn't want to if it means going dark, which leads insults between them. Unintentionally, Emma taps into her own rage and lights a fire on the wood, much to Regina's satisfaction. Unexpectedly, Mary Margaret blurts out, after much questioning from Emma, that Neal is alive. While Emma is slowly being convinced of the possibility, Regina thinks it's one of Pan's false leads. Not willing to stand for something that likely isn't even true, Regina leaves the group. She wanders the jungle until stumbling on Mr. Gold as he is falling under the spell of the Shadow who has taken on the appearance of Belle. She begins using magic to choke "Belle" until the facade melts off to reveal the Shadow just before it flees. Regina berates Mr. Gold over his foolishness and expresses frustration over her previous ventures with David, Emma and Mary Margaret and getting nowhere in the plan of reaching Henry. Though she wants to team up with him, Mr. Gold states that the only way to stop Pan is if he dies as well in the process. She is certain there must be another way, but he reaffirms that death is the only path. As much as she would not mind destroying Pan, Regina suggests they can find a way to contain him. Mr. Gold has just the item for the job, except it's sitting in his pawnshop. She reprehends him for not bringing it along, though Mr. Gold's whole plan all along was to sacrifice his own life to kill Pan. Regina mocks him for such an idiotic plan as his will for self-preservation is too strong anyway. To procure the item, Regina summons a mermaid, Ariel, from the ocean. Since Ariel has a grudge against Regina for stealing her voice, she returns it. Additionally, she gives her a bracelet, in which the wearer can have control over having human legs. More importantly, the place she will go is also where her past love, Eric, resides in. At this, Ariel complies with their terms and is told to go to Storybrooke. ("Ariel")
To help Ariel find the way there, Mr. Gold draws a route to Storybrooke on the ground and then gives her an enchanted sand dollar to take to Belle. Regina decides to hold off on telling Ariel the whereabouts of Eric until after she accomplishes the mission, and stresses the bracelet will only give her legs for twenty-four hours. Passing the time until Ariel's return, Regina asks Mr. Gold if he really believes Belle can succeed. He is certain she can, but Regina wants to be sure his feelings aren't blinding him. Mr. Gold attests that his feelings for Belle are enough to believe in her. She realizes he must really love her. He jokes she is jealous, but Regina denies being envious of Belle. However, Regina is taken aback when Mr. Gold determines she actually covets not having someone. A splash interrupts the exchange as Ariel peers out from the water to deliver the box to Mr. Gold. Regina praises her for success in the mission and uses magic on the bracelet to allow Ariel control over being human. Mr. Gold counsels her to go back to Storybrooke and seek out Eric. Before she goes, Ariel notifies them about Pan's prisoner, Wendy, and the girl's brothers are in Storybrooke anxiously awaiting their sister. Regina has no concern for anyone except Henry, though Ariel calls attention to the fact they have a way to get to him due to herself and Belle. She proposes one way to repay the debt is to save Wendy. Though Mr. Gold is willing to try, Regina stays firm to her previous stance. ("Dark Hollow")
Regina brings up the ludicrous search that Emma and the others went on looking for Neal, who is presumed dead, when Mr. Gold admits that he is actually alive. She is surprised over his choice in letting Neal go as he might have a way off the island. Regina also senses he is hiding something, but Mr. Gold smoothly talks his way through the subject. Then, they come across David, Emma, Hook, Mary Margaret, Neal and Tinker Bell in the jungle. Regina presents them with the useful of Pandora's Box, but Neal is displeased to see Mr. Gold. He blurts out his father's objective to kill Henry and prevent a seer's prophecy from coming true. Shocked, Regina backs away as everyone subsequently draws their weapons at Mr. Gold. Things cool down only when Neal makes him hand over the box. After Tinker Bell gains access into the perimeter of the encampment and the Lost Boys are put to sleep by Regina, neither Henry or Pan are found there. Instead, Neal frees a young prisoner, Wendy, and brings her back to camp to inquire about Henry. Forced to act on Pan's wishes, Wendy lies to them, but with some encouragement, she yields and tells the truth. Emma gains insight on Pan's real reason for needing Henry's heart, which is to save himself from dying and then become immortal. As a trade, Pan lives, but Henry will die. By rowboat, Regina, Emma, Mr. Gold and Neal ascend onto Skull Rock to stop Pan. Instead, they are stopped by a barrier, enacted to keep out anyone with a shadow, blocking their path up the stairs. As Mr. Gold is the only one without a shadow, he is able to enter through and goes up to confront Pan with the box. While he is gone, Emma and Regina use magic to block out the moon as well as their shadows. The trio rush up to the upper level to witness Henry pulling out his own heart. All three attempt to dissuade him from the sacrifice, but through Pan's manipulations, Henry chooses to give up his heart. They cry out in horror as he plunges the heart into Pan's chest, causing all of them to be thrown back from the impact, and Henry collapses. As they rush over to check up on his unmoving body, Pan rises into the air. ("Think Lovely Thoughts")
Regina refuses to leave her son's side while Pan gloats over how he got Henry to give up his heart. He also reveals Mr. Gold is now trapped inside the box before Emma nicks him. Shortly after, Pan takes off. In desperation, Regina lashes out at Neal's ridiculous suggestion that they should check the Lost Boy camp for Pan when she knows their nemesis wouldn't risk going back there. Though Emma claims to know how she feels, Regina begs to differ. Regina emphasizes all the family and loved ones Emma has, while she herself has only ever had Henry. Neither are able to think of what else they can do, but Regina notices the blood on Emma's sword when she cut Pan, meaning he can be killed. Back at the Lost Boy camp, Regina casts a preservation spell on Henry's body to last one hour until they track down Pan. Regina interrogates Felix, who won't talk, so she goes for his heart, though Emma gets her to back down. Instead, Emma sways the other Lost Boys with the promise she will get them off the island, to which they disclose Pan is at his "thinking tree" in Pixie Woods. Once Regina, Emma and Mary Margaret get there, they are ensnared by tree vines. Pan mentions the tree is special to him because it's the same place that he abandoned his son, Mr. Gold. As such, the tree will kill those who feel regret, so he brings up guilt-worthy moments from each person's past. Regina attests to doing cruel and horrible things, but regrets nothing since each one of those deeds led her to Henry. She breaks herself and her allies free, tears out Henry's heart from Pan and steals back the box as well. They hurry onto the Jolly Roger in time to place the heart back in Henry as he gasps to life. Happy beyond words, Regina tucks Henry into bed and casts a protection spell on his heart so it can never be ripped out again. A short time later, she rushes back in to check up on Henry after Mr. Gold absorbs Pan into the box. Regina helps to project the Shadow into a sail after it is released and fired into the air, which then powers the ship for the flight home. Lastly, Tinker Bell congratulates Regina for getting Henry back as the two clear up their past differences. ("Save Henry")
Following a safe journey out of Neverland to Storybrooke, Regina descends onto the docks as David, Emma, Henry and Mary Margaret are greeted by the townspeople with much acclaim. Once again the oddball out, she says nothing during the entire spectacle until Mary Margaret brings to everyone's attention that it was due to Regina's helpful efforts which allowed them to return home. Regina looks on; surprised at the praise. On Henry's word, Regina and the others agree Felix is dangerous and decide to lock him up. Then, Mr. Gold secures the box in his pawnshop so Pan can never be freed. During an evening festivity at the diner, Henry prepares to say goodnight to Regina, except he asks to spend the night at her house in his old room. Happily, Regina accepts as Emma allows it, and the two go home together. That night, Henry relates his fears that Pan will somehow break out of the box and harm him again. He pleads for the necessity of the magic in her vault as a defense, but she is has no concerns about Pan ever getting out of the box. She also stresses that magic is not the answer to everything, and tucks him into bed. The next day, Mother Superior is killed by the Shadow. Suspecting Pan is controlling the creature from inside the box, Regina takes Henry to her vault for protection. While inside, she and Henry share a tender moment, but in the next instant, Regina is knocked unconscious. Upon awakening, she learns from David, Emma, Mary Margaret and Mr. Gold that Pan has been in Henry's body this entire time. Regina is profoundly upset to have fallen for Pan's trickery, especially since she had hoped her son still needed her. Henry, in Pan's body, admits that he still does need her, and warmly embraces a tearful Regina. However, more trouble brews, as they discover Pan took the scroll for the Dark Curse. ("The New Neverland")
Mr. Gold shares with everyone of the only viable way to stop Pan's curse is for Regina, as the original caster of the Dark Curse, to undo it by destroying the scroll, though there will be a steep price for this. They plan to switch Henry back to his own body so he will be in possession of the scroll and bring it to Regina. Mr. Gold can perform the spell, but needs a strong outlet in order for it to work. Tinker Bell has knowledge of a powerful Black Fairy wand that Mother Superior kept, so she, David, Hook and Neal go to retrieve it from the convent nuns. David, Hook and Neal arrive back with the wand. After Henry's spirit is transferred into his old body, everyone heads out to look for him. They find him near the clock tower with Granny's tracking skills. Regina passes out after taking the scroll and awakens with knowledge of the price for stopping the curse. They are accosted by Pan as he steals back the scroll and freezes them in place. The showdown ends when Mr. Gold summons the dagger and stabs Pan as well as himself with it; killing both of them. Regina reveals the price for stopping the curse is all former Enchanted Forest inhabitants will be sent back to their old world while Storybrooke will disappear out of existence. She urges Emma to stay with Henry. At the town border, Regina says goodbye to her son. Henry blames himself, as everything would have never occurred had he not sought out Emma, and is sorry for believing that Regina did not love him. She has her share of regrets for casting the curse out of vengeance. Regina calls herself a villain who can't have a happy ending, he corrects her; saying she is simply his mother. As Emma drives out of Storybrooke with Henry, their memories are altered by Regina, while everyone inside town is taken back to the Enchanted Forest. ("Going Home")