Storybrooke: Emma drives up to a house and asks the kids if it's the right one. Ava begs her not to bring them to the door, claiming her parents would be mortified. Emma tells them about her super power (lie detection) and asks if, money problems aside, everything is okay at home. Ava lies that it's great. Emma acts like she believes her. When the kids climb the stairs to the house which is clearly not theirs, Emma drives off. The kids wait 'til she's gone and then run through yards and climb fences. Finally, they enter the basement of a dilapidated, boarded up house. They have all the stolen goods from the pharmacy, but they're in white, plastic bags. That old softie Emma must have paid for them. When they hear a noise the children go upstairs to find Emma waiting. "Why'd you guys lie to me? Where are your parents?" Ava: "We don't have any." Commercial.
Mary Margaret's Hovel: Emma brings the kids to Mary Margaret's house. While the children eat, Mary says that while she's seen them around the school, she didn't know their circumstances. No one did. Emma says their last name is Zimmer and their mother died a few years ago. "No one seems to know her or remember her." When Mary realizes Emma hasn't reported the children to Social Services, she tries to encourage her to do so, but Emma grew up in foster care and is no fan. I'd like to apologize to those foster families out there who provide loving homes for children. I cringe whenever Emma brings up her past. There are good foster families and bad ones, just like there are good biological families and bad ones. Anyhow, Emma wants to hunt down the children's father. "They don't know him. He might not know they exist." She is afraid if the kids enter the system, they'll be split up. When Ava overhears this, she cries and begs Emma not to let that happen. Emma says she won't. Which... yikes, you don't have that much control, girlie. Or do you...
Town Hall: Emma meets Mr. "K" Krzyszkowski at town hall. She's looking for the Zimmer twins' birth certificates. As she's filling out the request forms in triplicate, Mr. K says they've recently been removed. Emma: "By who?" I'll give you one guess.
Regina's Office: Regina tells Emma she has contacted Social Services. She's not impressed with Emma's desire to find the children's father and says they'll be put into the foster system. Emma: "Storybrooke has a foster system?" No, of course not, silly. Regina has contacted the state. And then the plot becomes unnecessary convoluted. Regina: "Maine's group homes, unfortunately are filled, but they put us in touch with two homes in Boston -- a boys' home and a girls'." It would be highly unlikely that children even could be legally transferred from the custody of one state to another. Now, maybe Boston was chosen as the location here, because the writers wanted to give Emma one more reason to empathize with the Zimmer twins, but she's already there. There's no need to take people out of the story with a detail like that, particularly since [SPOILER] the children never actually go to Boston. They should have just written "Portland" or "Augusta" and been done with it. I mean sheeesh, Google a map of Maine, for cry-yi-yi. Anyhow, Regina orders Emma to drive the kids to Boston. "You wanted to be sheriff. This is what sheriffs do [...] You're taking them." Look on the bright side, Emma. Regina is also what the last sheriff "did." What's a couple of hours on I-95? When Emma say she promised them she wouldn't let them be split up, Regina enjoys telling Emma she shouldn't make promises she can't keep.