This week's Once dug into David's (Josh Dallas) backstory to reveal what really happened to his father — the same father who allegedly died in a drunk carriage driving accident. It turns out that wasn't the real story at all. David's father actually died trying to rescue David's twin brother James from King George (Alan George). The evil monarch ordered David's father to be executed, and the man died sober trying to do what was right for his family — or so David believes.
That was certainly King George's plan, but the mercenaries planning David's father's death were overtaken by a group of pirates looking to steal the king's gold. Dead men tell no tales, as Hook so proudly proclaimed in a flashback before knifing David's father through the heart with his sword. He could have let the man go home to his family, but instead Hook's lack of conscience and greed caused David to grow up not only fatherless, but thinking that his dad was a reckless drunk.
Even as the story sits, David is losing hope that he's good enough to be able to find a cure for the sleeping curse that keeps him separated from Snow (Ginnifer Goodwin), because his father was a good man doing the right thing who never made it home.
While everyone knows that Hook is a completely different person now than he was when he murdered David's father, that might be a little harder for Emma and her parents to understand. Hook has a lot more to lose now by telling the truth, though. He's bought a ring and plans to propose to Emma, and even secured David's blessing to marry the Savior. The blessing came with David's own acknowledgement that Hook has done the hardest thing there is to do — change. Hook saved David from hitting rock bottom and killing King George in an act of vengeance. Even if David could keep himself from avenging his father when he finds out the truth of how he died — would he really want that man as a son-in-law?
It's going to be a while before Hook comes clean about what really happened to David's father, but he will go to Archie (Raphael Sbarge) to try and clear his conscience. He's stuck in a Catch-22 situation. He could reopen David's wound and risk losing his new family, or he can go ahead and propose knowing that he'll be starting a marriage to Emma with a gigantic lie. This is television, so inevitably Hook's secret will have to come out — but he'll have to decide how it happens and whether he can prove he's not the same man he was in the past.
In the end, it's going to be better for Hook to come clean on his own. Even if Charming can't forgive him immediately, owning up to what he did is the best way to ensure that his future with Emma stays secure. Hopefully, Emma can see how much he's changed, and be able to convince her father that Hook deserves another chance.
Once Upon a Time airs Sundays at 8/7c on ABC.