No we aren't talking about the evil/queen/mayor's collection of hearts. Rather we are talking about Mr. Gold/Rumpelstiltskin past. He wasn't always an overacting evil little magic bad ass. In fact, at one time he was just a weak, scared little family guy spinning wool. See, at this time there was the Ogre War going on and Rumpy has already been branded a coward. He would do anything not to see his son fight.
Amazingly enough a begger comes by played by Brad Douriff aka WYRMTONGUE! Right trust this guy. Anyway, the begger tells that the Duke has a special dagger that can control the Dark One. One can even have the power of the Dark One if he kills the Dark One with the dagger. The begger tells rumpy where to find and since it was unguarded he now has a magic dagger.
Well Rumpy chants and the Dark One appears and insults Rumpy. Rumpy has no problem plunging the dagger into the Dark One. Dark One to no one's surprise becomes the begger. Rumpy becomes the new Dark One and kills a bunch of soldiers going after his boy. He will protect what is HIS.
Sooooooo... back in the real world. They are having an election for sheriff. Even though Queen/Mayor/Domintrix/Heartbreaker doesn't want Emma to have the job. Seems that the town has a real charter and she has to abide by it. Mr. Gold is helping Emma and not coincidently a fire springs up that makes Emma a hero. At the town meeting Emma voices her suspicions about Mr. Gold and the fire and basically gives up. She's throwing back the alky hall later when the Queen/Bitch/Mayor comes in and gives her the badge. Turns out people liked her honesty. Later on Mr. Gold will tell her that was his intent all along, that he KNEW she would rat him out cause she's such a goody goody. Could be true, or it just could be something he said after his plan failed but managed to work anyway to play head games with Emma. In any event she owes him now, and who knows when he'll collect.
Overall, an ok episode but seriously I can't get excited about town elections even with arson added in. The Rumpy scenes were only so so til the end where he becomes total badass. It was also interesting that he now seems to regard his son as property. He has lost his heart then and there.