Mr. Gold/Rumplestiltskin (Robert Carlyle) sacrificing himself to save Storybrooke and, specifically, his son, seems like a fitting end to the story of the coward who always looked out for himself above all else. But would Once Upon a Time really kill off such an important, beloved character long before the show's end?

It sure looked like the writers went that route in the Season 3 midseason finale (Season 3, Episode 11: “Going Home”), but we have a hard time believing that's the last we've seen of Rumple. There's been absolutely none of the fanfare we'd expect around such a huge departure, and since Rumple only disappeared, there are a thousand ways he could be brought back without anyone blinking an eye. On this show, we've had characters revive even after we've seen the body — without a body, it barely counts as a "death," even a fake one.   

If cold hard logic isn't enough to reassure you that Rumple will be back in all his manipulative glory soon, maybe this will help calm your worries. At the beginning of December, showrunner  Adam Horowitz said that, "in the second half of the season, [Rumple and Belle] are going to be in the same world for an extended period of time," while Eddy Kitsis added that "the second half of the season will further explore their relationship — in whatever state that is."

While we suppose those statements could be hinting that Belle goes on some sort of adventure to bring Rumple back from the dead, our guess is that Regina breaking the curse brings Rumple back to the Enchanted Forest somehow, and the Rumbelle relationship picks up from there.

What do you think: Is Rumple totally alive, or are you still worried? Sound off in the comments below!

Once Upon a Time returns on Sunday, March 9 at 10 p.m. ET/PT on ABC.

Rebecca Martin is an Associate Editor at Wetpaint Entertainment and our resident Game of Thrones, Breaking Bad, and genre TV expert. Follow her on Twitter and Google+!