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ONCE UPON A TIME Recap: ‘Lily’

Fates intertwined. 

As you may have already deduced from the title, Once Upon A Time episode 20 focuses on finding Maleficent’s daughter Lily, who just so happens to be a childhood friend of Emma’s. But, before we get to that, we’re treated to a brief meeting between the Apprentice and the Sorcerer at the beginning of the episode. Feeling responsible for what happened to Maleficent’s child, the Apprentice  reveals that he’s fixed the problem by trapping the Author in the book so he can never alter fate again.

As for the hunt for Lily, Maleficent shows up to a heroes meeting at the diner, claiming that she wants to ditch the baddies and stop Rumpel, who is now her enemy. She manages to convince the benevolent batch that if they help her find her daughter–who is still alive–she’ll help them out. Seeing that Emma is skilled at finding people, Mal enlists her to go on a hunt. But, after mentioning that her name is Lily and that she was adopted in Minnesota, Emma’s face completely changes as she realizes that Lily is actually the friend she got caught shoplifting with in previous flashbacks from her teenage years.

After the events at the ending of the last episode, everyone thinks it would be a good idea for the savior to get out of town, so she decides to head out in her yellow Volkswagen with Regina along for the ride. Though the former evil queen focuses on keeping Snow and Prince Charming’s daughter as far away from darkness as possible for most of the episode, she is also tagging along to save her true love Robin from her evil sister Zelena. A field trip outside of Storybrooke with someone teetering on the brink of true darkness. What could go wrong?


With an old address in hand, Emma and her  travel companion Regina follow up on a lead which leads to a run-down apartment complex Lily used to live in. Much to their dismay, one of the neighbors reveals that Lily died in a car crash a couple of years back. Snapping after hearing the news, Emma nearly strangles the man and Regina stops her, telling her its’s not worth it.

Leaving empty handed, Regina and Emma hit the road again, but soon crash their car outside a diner, nearly missing a mysterious wolf in the process. Where they broke down was no coincidence however, as a perfectly healthy Lily is working as a waitress under a different name.

Then, we’re granted with a flashback from the year 1999 when a teenage Emma was happily living with a new foster family. Unfortunately for her, fate brings Lily back into her now perfect life. She finds her hiding out in the family garage begging for Emma’s help. It doesn’t take long for Emma to realize that Lily is wanted for robbery, which she claims she was forced into.


Feeling threatened by Lily’s bad influence, Emma promises to swipe her ex-friend’s necklace–which is the only thing she has of her birth mother’s–from the place she and her boyfriend were squatting at, and bring it back to her as long as she high-tails it out of there upon her return. After returning from her late-night heist, Emma encounters her foster parents who inform her that her friend Lily broke into Bill’s (foster dad) desk and stole a huge chunk of cash. Suddenly suspicious of Emma’s relationship with the thief, the foster parents contact the savior’s social worker who spills the beans on Emma’s criminal past. The duo ends up kicking Emma out of the house because they’re upset she allowed a criminal into their house and endangered “their children”.

Emma clearly doesn’t like being reminded that she isn’t actually their biological child which prompts her to ditch her new home for a  different life. Seeing as they’re forever connected, Lily encounters a furious Emma at a bus station and complains that her “whole life is darkness” but that when she’s around Emma, things get better. As we already know, things are the polar opposite for our favorite blonde protagonist. Emma tells her that she’s better off alone and leaves Mal’s daughter sitting at the bus station alone.

Back in present time, Emma confronts Lily who now wants nothing to do with Emma. She tells her that she has a loving husband and child and that she hasn’t thought about her in quite some time. A school bus arrives and Lily uses it to get out of the conversation, stating that her daughter is on the bus. But, lo and behold, the little girl she cozies up to agrees to pretend to be her daughter for a few minutes in exchange for free diner food.

Seeing right through her bull, Emma steals Lily’s new address and heads over to the location because she senses something’s amiss. Most importantly, she expresses remorse for the way she treated her old friend and vows to help her in any way she can. However, once they finally arrive at the home, they find a wall  of newspaper clippings and connections, indicating that Lily knows absolutely everything about Storybrooke and what Emma’s parents did to her as a baby. Just as they make this discovery, they hear Lily taking off in Emma’s car–which unfortunately contains Ingrid’s scroll, which allows access into Storybrooke.

Once Upon a Time Lily Image 04272015

Emma and Regina end up in a fast and furious car chase, after first hot-wiring a car. It looks like the Once writers are really going for it with the new “Emma is turning dark” plot point. When they finally catch up to the thief, Emma ends up pointing a gun at Lily’s head after her parent’s lives are threatened. Despite the fact that Lily is actually goading Emma to shoot her, Regina is there to talk her down from it as it would ruin her parents and Henry’s lives.

Back in 1999 we see Lily on a bus, unknowingly sitting next to the Apprentice. Obviously stemming from his guilt about what happened, he starts to reveal why her life is so terrible. That explains how she found out absolutely everything about the inhabitants of Storybrooke and begins plotting her revenge against Emma’s parents.

After sparing her life, Emma asks Lily to tag along on the last leg of the journey–to save Robin from Zelena. This leads the trio to Neal’s old apartment in New York. Initially finding Robin alone, Emma and Regina explain that Marian actually died a long time ago and that Zelena has been in disguise all this time. Robin responds to the news bizarrely and seems hesitant about heading back to Storybrooke with Regina and co. Then, Zelena returns from whatever errands she was running and reveals that she is pregnant. Whoa!

So what did you think of this episode? What do you think will happen with Zelena’s pregnancy? Let us know in the comments below.

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