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Swan Keychain

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Go find Tallahassee.
Neal returning the keychain to Emma before dying src

The Swan Keychain, also known as Swan Necklace, is an item featured on ABC's Once Upon a Time. It first appears in the fourth episode of the first season.


During First Curse

Emma and Neal, are both thieves who run cons to make money, become partners-in-crime. One day, they enter a store, with Neal distracting the clerk by asking for directions, while Emma dons a fake baby bump and begins stealing store goods. When a customer accuses her of robbery, Emma pretends to have contractions. As Neal helps her out of the store, he swipes a swan keychain from a rack. Later, Neal discovers a past heist, in which he stole watches, has put his name on a wanted poster. Fearing the police will find him eventually, he decides to disappear to Canada alone, but Emma persuades him to let her steal back the watches, which they can sell and use the money to go to Tallahassee. The plan goes smoothly until Neal encounters August, who reveals his knowledge about Emma's purpose in life is to break a curse. Further troubled by the fact August knows his true identity, Neal agrees to let her get arrested for the stolen watches so she can fulfill her duty one day. Months after this, Neal learns from August that Emma is currently incarcerated. Handing over the swan keychain, keys to a car and money from the sold watches, he asks August to deliver them to Emma. August secretly takes the money, and after traveling to Phuket, he mails everything else to her. Upon receiving the items, Emma contemplates them for a moment before refocusing her positive pregnancy test. ("Tallahassee")

Sometime after giving up her newborn son for adoption, being released from prison and starting her life over as a bonds bail-person, Emma begins wearing the swan keychain pendant as a necklace. ("The Price of Gold")

After First Curse
Fulfilling an owed favor to Mr. Gold, Emma goes with him to New York City in search of his son, Baelfire, only to discover he is none other than her ex-boyfriend, Neal. Horrified at the prospect of being found by his father, Neal leads Emma to a bar, where he explains his reasons for letting her go to jail all those years ago. Although hurt and angry, she believes it's best if Mr. Gold is led to believe Neal couldn't be found. As Emma gets up to leave, Neal questions her about why she wears the swan keychain. She then snaps the chain off, returning the necklace, stating that it was to help her remember to never trust anyone again. ("Manhattan")

Before Second Curse
With the first curse undone, Neal and many former inhabitants of Storybrooke are forced to return to the Enchanted Forest while Emma and Henry left town to escape it. Looking for a way to resurrect a recently deceased Mr. Gold, Neal and Belle head to Rumplestiltskin's old castle. While there, Neal pulls out the swan necklace, which he kept ever since Emma returned it to him in New York City. He is surprised the pendant survived the curse reversion as Belle asserts it must have because the item was born from true love. Shortly after, the pair become acquainted with Lumiere, a talking candelabrum who reveals they can revive Rumplestiltskin at the Dark One's vault by inserting a key in it. Little do they know, Lumiere is following orders, under duress, from the Wicked Witch of the West. Arriving at the vault, Belle realizes Lumiere is lying, and when he explains the Wicked Witch wants to control Rumplestiltskin, she councils Neal against reviving his father. He stubbornly ignores her and places the key into the vault, unintentionally sacrificing his own life, for Rumplestiltskin's resurrection. Unable to accept his son dying, Rumplestiltskin then absorbs him into his own body. ("Quiet Minds")

During Second Curse
Not knowing he is sharing the same body with his father, Neal joins Emma during a search for Mr. Gold. During this, he develops severe pain while hearing his father's voice in his head. Since only Mr. Gold knows the Wicked Witch's true name, Neal persuades Emma to magically separate him from the body, even though it will kill him. She succeeds, and Mr. Gold names the Wicked Witch as Zelena. In Neal's last moments, he relinquishes the swan necklace to Emma and asks her and Henry to find happiness without him. ("Quiet Minds")


Costume Notes

  • The swan keychain design, which Emma later wears as a necklace, is a Swan Talisman Necklace made by Pyrrha and can be purchased online.[1]
    • A Swan Talisman Keychain used to be sold at Pyrrha's website as well,[2] but it is no longer available. The chain on Emma's keychain[3] differs from Pyrrha's version, indicating that the prop department simply took the necklace's talisman from its chain and attached it to a generic keychain.
    • The Swan Talisman Necklace is the same brand[4] as the key necklace Mary Margaret wears in the first half of Season Two,[5] as well as in the "The Shepherd" from Season One.[6]


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