"Joan" (whose real name is Anna) suggests that David fight this woman, in spite of him pointing out that it's a battle he can't win, because she believes they're the only battles worth fighting since there's no point fighting one you know you're not going to lose.He goes on to recount a story of his father, who died because he drunkenly steered his cart into a ravine after thirteen days of sobriety.However, when the Evil Queen enacts the Dark Curse, the baby must be placed into a magic wardrobe by her father and shipped off to our world.When the prince finally wakes up in the town of Storybrooke, Maine, it's after having spent 28 years in a coma as David Nolan, whose love for Mary Margaret ends up forsaking all his morals.She hears of his financial woes and decides to give him the money she was going to use to flee the kingdom, as a reward for saving her life, while she also receives the idea to delve into banditry.When King George's son, Prince James, is killed after being selected by King Midas to slay a fearsome dragon which plagues the kingdom, he must think fast or risk losing all the riches promised to him by Midas should the dragon be killed.Unfortunately, their farm isn't much of a financial success, and both of their sons come down with colds for the winter-time.
David's mother Ruth approaches him one day as he's herding sheep on the family farm and tells him that a girl in the village is available for marriage, but David wants to marry for love, believing it to be the only thing in his life he has any control over.
Six years later, and Robert makes a name for himself as a drunkard around the village.
He then hears word that Prince James has been abducted and, needing to step up and be a father and save his son, he decides to set out to find him.
With the woman's help, when she punches a hole in the wagon, David is able to win the struggle.
He wants to free the woman still, but she won't allow him to see her face because she's a wanted criminal, and so they simply interact through the small hole.