Feels like home.
Daenerys had never experienced this before in her life. She had never had the safety, the joy, the simple pleasure of a meal with others that carried no pressure, no expectations. She had come to their table, her table given use to them, expecting a dinner of consequence of substance. She had treated it like a state affair, a step in their negotiations. She wore her hair with silver pins, a gown of red silks and skin tight leather. She looked the fierce soul of conquest and strength in her divine finery. Accompanied by Missandei, the queen went down to the King of the North’s apartments.
But what she found was the food already served, and a jovial company in their cups.
Ser Davos was laughing as Tyrion told a story of a green boy named Jon Snow that got so drunk, his first time, that he climbed under his direwolf to sleep, thinking the beast was his sleeping roll. The King of the North looked far from offended upon the mockery that fell over him, laughing through bites of chicken at the revelry of his youthful mistake.
Daenerys felt guilty for having broken up the festivities by her severe appearance. The three men stood at attention upon her entrance, clearly unaware that the queen would take the invitation so seriously. After a long pause it was Ser Davos who retrieved her and Missandei, offering them an arm each, quickly catching Dany up on Tyrion’s story. She felt rather self-conscious from the way everyone stared at her dress, stared at her. But she felt a blush come on when she saw Jon’s gaze last the longest out of all of them.
She didn’t understand what the point of it all, at first. They didn’t seem to be talking about the war, or politics, or compromise. They were just telling stories, laughing, and reminiscing. It didn’t occur to the young beauty that it was possible to do that. It was a foreign notion that people ate, shared Dinner Company, just to talk and laugh. They were a king, a smuggler, a dwarf, and an interpreter, sitting at a table together with no agenda, no interest in the seriousness of the world order. It seemed a strange place to a girl who spent her life with serious people discussing serious things. She felt out of place at first, but gradually, gratefully, they never once left her behind.
Now, hours later, Dany didn’t want it to end. She wished she could have this all the time. To forget the world for a night and listen to Ser Davos’s stories, Lord Tyrion’s wit, Missandei’s rare laugh, and the way Jon Snow smiled, looking across at her to assure her that it was okay to laugh, to smile, to be herself around him.
“So there I was … killer surf that goes straight to the razor sharp rocks below and above me, three guards who hadn’t eaten all day with repeat’in crossbows.”
“Sounds quite dreadful.”
“Oh, I thought that I would surely be at the end of a bolt or in a bowl of brown, true enough, Your Grace.”
“What did you do?”
“Yes, please do continue.”
“Well, you see, there was just a crack in the stone of the tower, so, I built up my momentum and swung across. I planted my feet right there in the crack and held on to dear life. Then, I reached over and climbed the railings.”
“Such bravery …”
“Oh, no, Missandei, it was stupidity, but well payin stupidity. And what lad didn’t dream of climbing the tall tower and rescuing the damsel?”
“Well did you?”
“Sadly, no …”
“No, Your Grace, see my rival Salladhor beat me to the punch, ran off with the Lady two days prior.”
“What did you do?”
“I introduced myself to the young woman that was there. She was Lady Croft’s Handmaid that she left behind to be used by the blood thirsty men so that she might escape.”
“Surely you didn’t leave her behind as well?”
“Yes, plenty of times, but she was waiting for me when I came back home.”
The table grew quite, but not awkwardly so. There was warmth to the end of the story that spread pleasantly across the small party that sat around the table. It was very late in the night. Lord Tryion was already passed out with an empty cup of wine. He half chuckled in sleep, trying not to appear rude in his subconscious by laughing at Ser Davos’s story. The rest of the table stared and smiled at the drunken dwarf endearingly.
“It’s such a lovely story, Ser Davos.” Missandei seemed enchanted by the tale of how he had met his wife.
“She was a lovely person.” He drew off wistfully.
Dany felt her heart twinge. “I’m sorry you lost her.” She said sincerely. The Queen had known many rogues in her day. She had varying degrees of sympathize for each of them. But the girl had only known Ser Davos for a week and yet she couldn’t bear to hear ill tidings happen to him. He was just that kind of man.
The old man only smirked sadly. “Don’t pity me, Your Grace.” He sighed. “I loved a woman, a good woman, and she gave me a fine son. And maybe she’s gone, but I know she’s in some tower, somewhere, wait’in on me to come and get her.” He smiled sadly.
“But how did you know?” Missandei asked gingerly. “How did you know, you loved her?” There was a timid lilt to her measured question. Dany smirked into her cup. Her handmaid and Grey Worm were a complicated story, but The Queen was never the less invested in the strange love affair.
The old smuggler looked off for a moment. “It feels …” He drew off. “It feels like home.” He replied with assurance.
“Like home?” She asked with a frown.
“Yes …” He said confidently. “Like, you’ve known that person your entire life. You meet, and it’s like …” He paused.
“You’ve already met, in another time, in another place …”
Everyone one at the table turned to Jon who had been sitting quietly, listening. His eyes were downcast, cradling his cup. He seemed conflicted, his breath uneven, trying hard not to do the one thing he wanted. But finally he broke, and he looked up …
Right to Dany.
“It’s like the world was created, you were created, to join that person, to become a part of their life, to share it. Nothing ever makes sense till you find him.”
The Queen’s voice softened as she spoke with reverence. There was a glimmer of emotion in her bright eyes that reflected in candle light. They were two people whose eye contact could create worlds, entire universes, for only they two.
A quiet fell over the table, the weight of such strong emotions, of destiny, lay heavy in the charged atmosphere. It seemed that in the late night on Dragonstone that a great truth was unveiling itself to the world over a joyous chicken dinner and wine. The deep intensity of longing and deep primal emotions lashed like the waves below the balcony.
Tyrion laughed again from his slumbering place. They all turned as the dwarf cuddled the empty wine bottle. The intensity of emotion faded and somehow it left the dining party breathless. Both Jon and Dany looked to be exhausted from whatever had overcome them.
“Yes …” Davos cleared his throat.
“It’s like home.”