Bastard, was the only word written outside the scroll. No Lord Snow or Jon Snow or Lord Commander. Simply Bastard. And the letter was sealed with a smear of hard pink wax. “You were right to come at once,” Jon said. You were right to be afraid. He cracked the seal, flattened the parchment, and read.
Your false king is dead, bastard. He and all his host were smashed in seven days of battle. I have his magic sword. Tell his red whore.
Your false king’s friends are dead. Their heads upon the walls of Winterfell. Come see them, bastard. Your false king lied, and so did you. You told the world you burned the King-Beyond-the-Wall. Instead you sent him to Winterfell to steal my bride from me.
I will have my bride back. If you want Mance Rayder back, come and get him. I have him in a cage for all the north to see, proof of your lies. The cage is cold, but I have made him a warm cloak from the skins of the six whores who came with him to Winterfell.
I want my bride back. I want the false king’s queen. I want his daughter and his red witch. I want his wildling princess. I want his little prince, the wildling babe. And I want my Reek. Send them to me, bastard, and I will not trouble you or your black crows. Keep them from me, and I will cut out your bastard’s heart and eat it.
It was signed,
Trueborn Lord of Winterfell. ― Jon XIII, A Dance with Dragons.
Reasons real and imagined why Theon needs redemption:
Theon didn’t owe the Starks any allegiance whatsoever… until he swore
that Robb was his brother. There was no way out of this for him since
once asshole dad made up his mind to go to war with the North he was
doomed to betray one side or the other. I think the fact that Theon
chooses to betray Robb, who cares for him, instead of Balon, who clearly
doesn’t, is very frustrating for a lot of people. Theon is not the best at decision making.
2. Killing 2 kids was definitely wrong by all Westerosi moral standards. Even Asha
calls Theon out on this. He was not fighting the enemy or helping his
family here, he was just trying to maintain his own wounded pride. In fact, his
actions hurt the Ironborn cause by pissing off all of the North even
more. This is the most clear cut example of Theon fucking up and the
primary thing I think he needs to atone for.
3. Nobody ever
brings up Moat Cailin because nobody seems to care about a bunch of
Ironborn redshirts, but Theon definitely gave them up to a horrible end. To a person in his right mind, the correct course of action would be to warn the Ironborn of Bolton craziness and offer to fight alongside them to the death.
Of course, Theon is not in his right mind and is absolutely not responsible for any actions he took as a brainwashed slave. Still, it’s
something he blames himself for and I’ve never seen it mentioned so I
thought I’d put it on the list.
4. Some people think Theon is
complicit in the rape on Ramsay’s wedding night because he is forced to take part.
These people are idiots and should be ignored.
5. BOOKS ONLY: The assassinations of the Ironborn soldiers who helped him fake
the deaths of Bran and Rickon. He is so afraid that his own men will
talk that he orders Reek!Ramsay to kill them, and then blames these
murders on a man he knows to be innocent. Not cool, Theon.
6. BOOKS ONLY: The rape of Kyra. When things are falling apart for Theon at the end of A Clash of Kings he tries to restore a sense of his own power by abusing his commoner girlfriend Kyra and it is definitely not ok. However Kyra comes to him for help later and he tries to save her, and he is really upset that he fails, and I like to imagine that there was some kind of forgiveness there before the end. Then, at the end of A Dance with Dragons, he empathizes with and successfully rescues Jeyne Poole, another rape victim, at great peril to his own skin. Redemption!
Disclaimer: Theon’s sins add to the depth of his character and the power of his story arc. Lots of characters in A Song of Ice and Fire are like this. White- or blackwashing almost any character in this series is doing them a disservice. Yes, even Ned Stark. I love Theon and think about him constantly, so I may uncover a forgotten crime and add it to the list. :)
Summary: Sansa is kind of YouTube famous and decides to vlog her family holiday for her viewers but her first video has unexpected results.
The thing is Sansa didn’t mean to get into YouTube. She had aspirations of being a theatre actress, doing Shakespeare on the West End or something equally as prestigious, but one drunken night at uni, Sansa decides the world is in dire need of a video on how to do your makeup drunk. It’s not her proudest moment and she even uploaded it without any editing whatsoever, but somehow, by the time she woke up the next morning, she already had over 100,000 views. It’s utterly bizarre and – well, it’s kind of cool. Jeyne thinks it’s good exposure because it’s not like she can’t just quit YouTube if she wants, so she uploads a couple more videos. One of her doing the everyday beauty routine challenge and another drunk one where Jeyne and her drink wine and talk about fuckboys. By the end of the month, she’s kind of YouTube famous and life ceased to make sense anymore.
Her family at least thinks it’s hilarious. Robb constantly asks to appear in her videos and her views skyrocket each time because according to her fans, her brother is ‘so hot holy shit let him impregnate me’, which is really, really disgusting. Occasionally Bran will join her if he’s visiting her at uni and they’ll just drink and review movies or shows together. The only two people who adamantly refuse to have anything to do with her channel are Arya and Rickon. Rickon’s still in that awkward teenage phase where hanging out with his older sister is uncool and Arya just scoffs at YouTube in general. But when the trend of vlogging starts taking off, Sansa decides to give it a try. She’s going on holiday with her family and a few of their friends, so it’s the perfect opportunity to test it out.
– although not everyone thinks so.
“Get that fucking camera out of my face, Sansa,” Arya spits out as they stand in the queue waiting to check in their luggage. Sansa sticks out her tongue and her sister rolls her eyes in exasperation. They’ve always had an antagonistic relationship, as sisters do, but it’s gotten worse with YouTube. Sansa doesn’t really know why but she doesn’t want to dwell on it either. Arya can be a cow so it’s probably just that.
Sansa turns the camera to Robb, who’s wearing a greying hoodie, sunglasses perched on his nose and an empty Starbucks cup in one hand. “Hungover, Robb?”
He looks up blearily, notices the camera and flashes a weak smile. “Like you wouldn’t believe.” Looking directly at the camera, he adds, “listen, kids, if your best friend breaks up with his girlfriend and you think it’s a good idea to go cheer him up with a bottle of whiskey eight hours before flying, don’t.”
Arya, Bran and Rickon snicker, but Sansa is a little frozen with this new piece of knowledge. “Wait…” But she doesn’t get a chance to ask because Jeyne comes bounding forward with her hot pink suitcase rolling behind her.
“Morning, Starklings!” she greets brightly – to much groaning from her siblings. She plants a kiss on Sansa’s cheek and squishes Robb’s face between her hands. “Hi, sunshine. Saw your Instagram story last night. Looks like you and Jon had a great time.”
“Story? What story?” Robb questions, rubbing his cheeks, before his eyes widen. “Noooo, I didn’t. Did I? Shit.”
“You did, you so very did,” Jeyne chirps, as she turns to the camera with a wave. “Our resident heartthrob here took our resident grump to a strip club.”
“What!” shouts all four Stark siblings, Sansa included.
Arya punches Robb in the shoulder. “Why would you do that to Jon? Does he look like that would cheer him up? He’s not you or Theon.”
Her brother rubs his shoulder, glaring at Arya. “Drinking games weren’t working! And he didn’t want to talk about it so…” He shrugs sheepishly. “We were out of options.”
“That’s so like you, Robb,” Sansa says on a sigh. “Maybe you should’ve just left him alone.”
She doesn’t usually voice her opinions on any matter involving Jon – mostly because she doesn’t think she has a leg to stand on. They’re not friends, not in the way he is with Robb or Arya or even Bran and Rickon. Actually, she seems to be the only person he doesn’t get along with. But she knows him. He’s Jon. He’s the guy who sat with her on her fifteenth birthday when she walked in on Joffrey making out with Margaery. He’s the guy that drove her home when she got drunk for the first time at seventeen and was too terrified to call Robb or her parents. He’s her grumpy knight in shining armour and she’s been in love with him for six years, so she knows him, probably better than Robb does, but of course no one knows that.
“Speak of the devil!” Arya exclaims as she walks quickly towards Jon, throwing her arms around his waist in a tight hug. He chuckles and wraps his arms around her. Sansa watches them whispering to one another, Arya rolling her eyes and then Jon ruffling her hair with fondness. It twists something inside of her that makes her shut the camera off and look away.
“Are you okay?” Jeyne says under her breath so only Sansa can hear.
She nods mutely, not wanting to say anything to betray how painful it’s always been to see Jon interact with her siblings, how effortless their friendships are and the stark contrast it is to how he is with her. She doesn’t need him to love her back, not in the way she loves him, but she can’t even have his friendship and that stings.
“Morning,” Jon greets as he reaches them with Arya tucked under his arm. “So I guess you’ve all heard.” They nod and there’s a round of commiserations. “Okay, good. Now that that’s done with, let’s not bring it up again.” His voice is teasing but there’s a sharpness to it that means Jon’s serious, so they all laugh and carry on, changing the topic to whether their flight will be delayed.
Theon’s the last to arrive, and thankfully by that point, the queue’s moved up enough that they only have to wait a further five minutes to check in. Her parents arrive back from their morning stroll around the airport just in time and soon they’re all heading to board the plane. There’s a scuffle as they near the gate as everyone’s looking at their tickets to see who they’re sitting with.
“Oh c’mon! Someone else sit next to him!”
“Awe, Jeyne, I’m not that bad.”
“Piss off, Theon. I will stab you!”
“Jeyne, honey, it’s only a couple hours.”
“Yes, Mrs Stark.”
Sansa muffles her laugh behind her bag as she searches for her passport which she shoved down to the bottom as they went through security. Once she has it in her grasps, she pulls out the ticket and reads out, “26C.”
“Oh,” says a voice from behind her and Sansa quickly turns around. Jon’s looking at his ticket then back up at her, a faint smile on his lips. “26B. I guess we’re sitting together.”
“I guess so,” is all she can manage, as her whole body stiffens at the prospect of spending nearly three hours on a plane beside Jon. A single Jon. It’s just all too much for Sansa to deal with this early in the morning. His hair is as unruly as ever, curling just over his forehead, and he’s wearing a thin black jumper that strain against his broad shoulders and a pair of dark-washed jeans. Too much. It’s too much.
Sansa grabs for Jeyne and tugs her forward, turning away from Jon. “I’ll sit with Theon.”
Her best friend’s face widens with joy and then suddenly pinches together as she frowns at Sansa. “Why would you –” She glances behind them where Jon is still standing, now rolling his eyes at whatever Robb is saying. “Oh no, absolutely not. You are not running away from him again.”
“Again?” Sansa cries out indignantly, catching the curious gaze of her father. “What are you talking about?” she hisses a little quieter.
“Um, remember when Robb and Jon came out with us that night in freshers?” Jeyne raises a brow and Sansa deflates because she does remember. “He was practically ready to propose to you.”
“He was drunk.”
“He couldn’t stop staring at you or smiling at you,” Jeyne says. “And then he asks you to go outside with him and you panic and run away.”
“I went to the bathroom!” Sansa whispers harshly, but she did panic. She had been so sure she would never be more than Robb’s little sister to Jon that when he had taken her hand and asked if she wanted to get some fresh air, she panicked.
“And what happened next, Sans?” Jeyne asks, voice a little gentler now.
Her heart breaks all over again as she leans her forehead against her friend’s shoulder, a resigned sigh escaping her lips. “He met Ygritte.”
“That’s right, he did, and guess what? They broke up and you’re not bloody running again,” Jeyne says as she pushes Sansa back upright. “You’re going to sit there and be charming and he’s going to fall in love with you all over again.”
“You’re delusional,” Sansa murmurs instead.
“No, I’m brilliant. Now, c’mon.”
The first hour actually passes by in near to complete silence. Sansa doesn’t know if she’s disappointed or relieved; she’s existing in the realm between both emotions and it’s making it really hard for her to sit still or sleep. Jon seems to be sleeping just fine, his face relaxed as he leans as far back as the chair will go. But as the second hour approaches, the man beside Jon, a terrifyingly large and bulky man with multiple tattoos winding up his arms and peeking from his cargo shorts, slumps his head onto Jon’s shoulder with a thump. He startles awake, wide-eyed and confused, and Sansa can’t help laughing at his expression and the situation he’s now in.
He groans quietly. “Of course this would happen to me.”
“Oh, don’t be such a drama queen, Jon,” she says, nudging his shoulder with hers. “If only I was as lucky to have a handsome man resting on me.”
Jon quirks an eyebrow at her. “Then let’s trade seats.”
“But how could you wake him!” she whispers back, smiling brightly at him and forgetting for a moment that she’s still madly, desperately, stupidly in love with this man.
“You’re enjoying this too much,” he says but his lips twitch and it’s adorable how hard he’s trying not to smile.
“I’m enjoying it just the right amount,” Sansa says before she’s reaching down for her bag and grabbing her camera, turning it on and recording. “Now I’m enjoying it too much.”
Jon eyes the camera and then glares at it. “Sansa,” he says warningly. “If this goes on the internet, I’m going to –”
“What?” she questions with an innocent smile. Sansa turns the camera onto herself. “He wouldn’t dare threaten this face, would he?” She gives a little pout, and in the background, she sees Jon cracking a fond smile as he reaches forward to tug at her loose plait.
“I’ll get you back for this.”
She focuses the camera back on him again. “Hmmm, no, I don’t think so.”
“What do you mean, no?”
“I mean no, Jon, you big puppy dog. I can outplay you,” she says still sweetly innocent. She’s enjoying this weird banter they have going on far more than she should because Jon just broke up with his girlfriend and this is only going to end up with her getting her heart broken in the end. Only she doesn’t care. She doesn’t care so much she might as well repress whatever self-preserving brain cells she has left.
“Outplay me? I didn’t realise this was a game,” Jon says, amused.
“Life’s a game, Jon Snow,” she quips back, to which he actually laughs so loud the man leaning on him jumps awake. He stares at Jon and then at Sansa’s camera and yawns before leaning against the window and falling asleep once again.
Both Jon and Sansa stifle their laughter but it’s no use so Sansa does something wildly inappropriate and presses her face into Jon’s shoulder, muffling her giggles into his jumper. He doesn’t seem to mind or maybe he’s too busy trying not to laugh himself.
For a few seconds, Sansa just allows herself the comfort his warmth provides her before extricating herself once she realises her camera’s still recording. She turns it to face her and makes a face. “We’re going to hell.”
Jon nods in the background. “First class tickets.”
“At least I have you as company,” she says, smiling back at him, and he returns her smile.
When she passes out later at the hotel trying to edit the footage, the last thing Sansa expects is for it to be uploaded by the time she wakes up and for her to receive way more notifications than should be normal.
Aromanticbabex: Okay but am I the only one who would still climb hungover Robb like a tree?
Sansa blanches. How is that the most liked comment? Ew!
Lyla Patel: Sansa, you’re so pretty! I’m so glad you’re vlogging! Your videos always makes my days better!
A smile so wide blossoms on her face and she quickly replies, ‘Thank you, Lyla. I appreciate you and all my fans so much! Xxx’
But then the comments sort of devolve from there and she really has no how idea how to handle any of it.
Al Nottellingu: WHO IS THIS JON AND WHY HASN’T HE BEEN IN HER VIDEOS BEFORE?!!!!!!!
Lili Cho: I CAN FEEL THE SEXUAL TENSION FROM HERE!!!
Roseand Tenforever: I ship it! I ship it so hard!!
Tom Hart: I AM COINING JONSA AND NONE OF YOU CAN TELL ME ANY DIFFERENT!
Siobhan Hughes: Ummmmmm why the fuck would anyone break up with a man who looks like THAT! Sansa, get in there, girl!
Sansa slams her laptop shut and throws a pillow at Jeyne’s head. Her friend groans and rolls away from her. She throws a second pillow at her.
“Did you edit my video and upload it for me?” Sansa demands angrily. She slides out of bed to go and sit on top of Jeyne’s prone figure.
The girl huffs and tries to kick her legs out to dislodge Sansa. “I thought I was being a good friend! You looked really tired!”
“But now the entire internet thinks me and Jon have something going on!”
Jeyne opens one eye to narrow it at Sansa. “Well, don’t you? You two were awfully cosy on that plane.”
“Jeyne,” she groans, pinching her friend on the hip. “He just broke up with his girlfriend! What if Ygritte sees it?”
“Then her bloody loss!” Jeyne suddenly thrashes wildly and Sansa ends up falling backwards onto the floor. A bruise is definitely going to form on her ass now. “Stop worrying about some girl you don’t even know and go after what you want, Sans.” She leans over the side of the bed to look down at her. “Look, I know Joffrey and Harry really screwed you over in the whole relationship department. And then after Ramsay, you’re kind of hesitant but we’ve known Jon since forever. He’s good and decent.”
Sansa rolls her eyes, even though her whole body’s recoiled at the mention of Ramsay but she’s trying desperately not to dwell on those months in her life. “I know that. Of course I know that. I’m the one in love with him, aren’t I?”
It’s hard to concentrate on having a good holiday when her mind is whirling with what Jeyne’s said. She doesn’t know why she doesn’t just go for Jon aside from the courtesy of giving him a wide berth while he heals from his breakup, but that’s not even what’s making her hesitant. It’s much more convoluted than that. It’s being cheated on in both of her previous relationships. It’s being stalked by a classmate for three months until he’s finally arrested for something completely unrelated – since reporting a stalker who hasn’t done anything means nothing to the police. It’s all of those things that make Sansa start to wonder maybe she shouldn’t be with anyone ever because everything she touches gets tainted one way or another and the last thing she’d want is to taint someone as pure as Jon. He’s the last good man on this planet that’s not related to her. And that’s just the thing, isn’t it? He’s really, really good. He’s honourable and honest and so loyal. He’d never cheat on his girlfriend. When he loves someone, she’s his whole world. Sansa saw the way he used to look at Ygritte, and although it had killed her to see him look at someone that way that wasn’t her, she was happy he’d found someone who made him that happy.
God, she hates love. She hates everything about it.
“Alright, sourpus, what’s got your knickers in a twist?” Arya asks, slumping down into the beach chair beside her. She’s in a simple black bikini with a ball cap turned the wrong way around on her head. She has a bottle of some obscure Spanish beer in one hand.
Sansa shields her eyes from the sun to look at her sister. “What are you talking about?”
“You’re glaring at the ocean like it personally offended you,” Arya points out with a long drag from her beer. “Honestly, you’re in bloody Spain. What have you got to be so angry about?”
“I’m not angry, I’m just… thinking,” she says lamely as she watches Jeyne tackle Theon into the ocean while Robb looks on with an amused and somewhat impressed expression.
“Uhuh, well you should think less,” Arya says. “Because you’re on holiday. Thinking is for losers. C’mon, Sans, have some fun.”
Sansa sighs. “What do you care if I’m miserable or not?”
Her sister snorts and rolls her eyes. “I care. Hey, I do. Just because I think you’re a spoiled princess most of the time doesn’t mean I don’t care if you’re happy or not. You’re just annoying.”
“I don’t know if I should be comforted or insulted,” Sansa chuckles as she swipes the beer from Arya’s hand to take a sip. As soon as the liquid hits the back of her throat, she makes a face. “I forgot I hated beer.”
Her sister snatches the bottle back. “Good. More for me.” They fall into a comfortable silence for a few minutes, both of them too busy watching their family and friends get into an all out war with each other. “Is this about Jon?”
Sansa’s head snaps to Arya so quickly she probably has whiplash now. “What?”
“He has no idea you fancy him, you know?” she says nonchalantly as if Sansa’s whole world hasn’t just been turned upside down. “Jon’s a bit of an idiot like that. Actually, both of you are idiots like that.”
“I mean god, he fancied you for so long it was honestly super gross,” she continues. “When he started dating Ygritte, we were all like ‘what the fuck’ but also kind of glad he was moving on.”
“What do you mean ‘we’ and what are you talking about!” Sansa is about to hit her sister out of sheer frustration.
Arya finally turns to look at Sansa and she’s wearing a long-suffering expression. “We as in the whole bloody family. Okay maybe except for Rickon. But everyone else kind of guessed it.” Her sister shrugs. “We didn’t think you were interested.”
“But I –”
“You’ve always been the type of person to keep your cards close to your chest,” Arya rattles on, cutting her off. “It was hard for any of us to tell.”
“So what changed?”
“Ygritte.” Her sister sighs and takes another pull from her beer. “When he started bringing her around, it was like – I don’t know. You just looked so broken.”
Sansa bites down hard on her lower lip but the memories come flooding back anyways.
The first time she saw Ygritte and Jon together was at her childhood home during Easter holidays. He’d brought her back with him from uni and it was just so obvious how smitten he was with her. Seeing him like that, so in love with someone else, had ripped out every wall she’d ever built around herself. It was like her mind had just given up trying to protect itself, like it didn’t care anymore what the rest of her did; it just wanted to succumb to its own self-pity and heartache. For days, Sansa had lived on autopilot. She smiled and made small talk but nothing could penetrate through the haze she was living in. Eventually, Jeyne had to come kidnap her and drive them back to uni early before Sansa completely fell apart.
The months that followed were the most agonising of her life. It feels melodramatic now to think it but Sansa couldn’t describe it in any other way. She knew even then how stupid it was to feel such a loss so acutely when Jon had never been hers to lose in the first place, but the petulant, childish part of her mind still screamed out that he was hers. He was her grump in shining armour and no one else’s. It was pathetic and she felt pathetic for thinking it.
“I hated her so much,” Sansa admits after a long silence. “I know that’s awful. I didn’t even know her but I just did. She was everything I wasn’t. Strong, smart, witty – it was like this realisation that I could try all my life to be like Ygritte but no one would ever look at me the way Jon looked at her.” She looks at her feet buried in the sand and says quietly, “because none of them would ever be him.”
Arya reaches out to grip Sansa’s hand. “You don’t just fancy him, do you?” She shakes her head. “You love him?” She nods. “Awe shit, Sans, then tell him.”
“I can’t. It’s not – he just broke up with Ygritte. I’d be an asshole to dump all this on him now.”
“You’re an asshole for not telling him in the first place,” Arya says but she’s smiling softly at her. “I’m no Jon interpreter but there’s a good fucking chance he loved you too.”
That night Sansa can’t bear to be around her family as they mill around the hotel bar chatting and drinking. She has too much to think about so at the first opportunity – which is just when Robb and Theon decide to do a duet at the karaoke machine – she slips out onto the beach with the goal of just walking aimlessly for as long as she needs to clear her mind. As always, Sansa has her camera and she begins to record the ocean as it laps up onto the sand. It’s close to a full moon and the silver light reflects off of the murky surface of the water. It’s beautiful and romantic, and so of course, she feels lonely for the first time in a long time. Sansa’s normally okay being single. After the debacle with Harry and the incident with Ramsay, the thought of any man being near her made her queasy, but now all she wants is for someone to wrap her up in their arms and just hold her. It’s a silly thought, probably born out of all those Disney movies she used to watch as a kid, but it’s there anyways, niggling at the back of her mind as she walks down the beach.
The air is humid and makes her hair stick to the back of her neck but there’s a cool breeze coming from the ocean that eases the humidity. She’s nearing the edge of the hotel’s property when she hears someone call out her name. Sansa turns and squints against the darkness.
“You shouldn’t be walking out here alone,” he says, jogging up to her. “It’s not safe.”
“Jon,” she breathes out, her whole body instantly relaxing at the sight of him. “I was just… clearing my head.”
He nods, grey eyes watching her carefully, before his cheeks flush. “Your viewers seem to like me.”
“You watched it?” Sansa asks, a little incredulous. She turns the camera off and puts it back into her bag.
“I always watch your videos, Sans.” He sounds so casual but the pink flush spreading across his cheeks makes her think this is anything other than casual. It’s unfairly adorable.
“I didn’t… know that,” she says slowly, unsure of what else to say now. “I can take it down if you don’t want anyone to see. Jeyne edited it so I didn’t really get a final say before she uploaded the video.”
Jon shakes his head. “It’s okay. It was funny.”
“Yeah,” Sansa says with a cheeky smile. “You and that man looked really good together on camera.”
He sighs and runs a hand through his dark hair. “You’re never going to let that go, are you?”
“Never,” she agrees, smiling even brighter.
“Figures,” he mumbles, chuckling softly. “You know… we looked good together too.”
“What?” Sansa’s heart all but stops. She’s not really sure what to say or what he’s implying.
Jon takes a couple steps closer to her till they’re only a foot apart. “I wish I knew,” he murmurs softly. “Maybe I wouldn’t have wasted everyone’s time pretending I still didn’t care.”
“Jon, what are you talking about?”
“Do you want to know why Ygritte and I broke up?” he asks instead, which really annoys her, and if she isn’t already so close to coming completely undone she would kick him for being so cryptic.
“It started a couple months ago,” Jon continues when she doesn’t answer. He’s looking at her warily and it’s making her heart beat faster and faster. “Or maybe earlier, I don’t know. But when I found out what was happening to you with that Ramsay guy, I was just – it was all I could think about. Robb and I would spend hours researching what legal action you could take. We’d take turns driving past your flat and making sure you were safe. I was so worried out of my mind that I guess I just neglected Ygritte. And when she tried to bring it up, I snapped at her. I was furious that she couldn’t understand how important this was, how it was you.”
Sansa doesn’t really know anymore if she’s breathing. She wonders if she might’ve just wandered into the ocean and died because this is too surreal. This is Jon telling her she means as much to him as he means to her.
“Once Ramsay was arrested, I promised her I’d get better but it was like – for over a year, I was so sure I was in love with Ygritte. She was great in every way, but…” Jon pauses to glance towards the ocean. “The thought that someone could hurt you and take you away from me suddenly made me realise that I never did move on. And I think after awhile Ygritte figured that out too.”
He looks back at her then and takes her hand in his. “I don’t deserve you but I just need to know if there’s even a chance you feel the same way or if I completely misread the signs in that video and made a total prick of myself. If I did, I promise I’ll never bring this up again and we can go back to –”
Sansa cuts him off by pressing her lips against his. He freezes at first but then his hands go immediately around her and she’s wrapping her own arms around his neck, carding her fingers through his hair. It’s everything she ever wanted and so much more because it’s not just a kiss, it’s a confirmation that Jon really is hers and has always been hers and will forever be hers.
“God, I love you so much,” she admits quietly when they pull apart. “But you really are an idiot.”
“I know,” he chuckles. “And I’m sorry it took me this long to get here.”
“You’re here now,” she tells him, dropping a chaste kiss to his lips just because she can.
“I am… and for the record, I fucking love you too.”
Aromanticbabex: I can’t decide if I want to climb Robb or Jon like a tree. Maybe both together? Anyone else?
Alison Lowe: I would let them do ungodly things to me
Superwholock: You guys are gross (but if I had to choose, I’d choose Robb!)
R0cket Racoon: Uhhhh, are you serious? It’s Jon all the way!
Sansa Stark: Can you guys please stop trying to climb my brother and my boyfriend? (Also, Jon all the way indeed ;)) xxx
Wonder Starks: I think I peed myself laughing watching Robb try to give Jon ‘The Talk’!!!
Wonder Starks: Also, how cute is Jon surprising Sansa with a holiday! I wish someone would fucking whisk me away from these exams! Where’s my grump in shining armour!
Dasha Santos: Seriously, where’s my fucking grump!!!1!@£@!$£!!!
Tom Hart: JONSA IS REAL!!!!!! MY OTP ARE ON HOLIDAY TOGETHER!! I BETTER BE INVITED TO YOUR FUTURE WEDDING, SANSA! I TOTALLY COINED YOUR SHIP NAME!!
Dani Johnson: I’m not crying you’re crying!!! T_T
2Slow Veryfurious: This is the best Christmas present ever!!
Arya Stark: You guys need to get a fucking grip.
Jeyne Poole: Don’t be rude, Arya. This has been in the making for like seven years!! Do you know how tired I was of hearing her pine away for him?
Robb Stark: Ugh, do YOU GUYS know how tiring it was for ME to watch my best friend stare longingly at my baby sister? That’s way worse!
Arya Stark: That’s because you think Sansa and I are like 12
Robb Stark: But you are…
Robb Stark: Arya?
Jeyne Poole: I think she left, idiot.
Robb Stark: Oi, don’t call me an idiot or I won’t take you out on that date!
Expounding on the limits of redemption; do you think someone who reaches a limit of how much they can redeem their past actions, yet still chooses to try anyway, is worthy of praise? Someone like Theon, who murdered kids and his friends and neighbors, yet chooses to try to save Jeyne. Do you see any other characters having this kind of scenario playing out?
Theon saving Jeyne is very much praiseworthy. It’s admirable and courageous, a heart-stirring defiance of Ramsay. But it’s got nothing to do with the atrocities he committed in ACOK. It doesn’t make up for those. It doesn’t cancel them out (ask Stannis about that particular strain of logic). Theon hasn’t wrestled with what he did…but to be fair, what Ramsay did to him makes it very difficult for him to do so, psychologically speaking. So at this point, I don’t blame him for the lack of said wrestling, but nor do I absolve him. It cuts both ways, right? On the one hand, Theon did not in any way deserve Ramsay’s physical and psychological torture regimen. On the other, having been through said regimen doesn’t magically wipe Theon’s slate clean.
Theon wrenched his arm away from her. “I’m no … I’m no one’s man.” A man would help her. “Just… just be Arya, be his wife. Please him, or… just please him, and stop this talk about being someone else.” Jeyne, her name is Jeyne, it rhymes with pain. The music was growing more insistent. “It is time. Wipe those tears from your eyes.” Brown eyes. They should be grey. Someone will see. Someone will remember. “Good. Now smile.” ― The Prince of Winterfell, A Dance with Dragons.
Help me.” She clutched at him. “Please. I used to watch you in the yard, playing with your swords. You were so handsome.” She squeezed his arm. “If we ran away, I could be your wife, or your … your whore … whatever you wanted. You could be my man.
A Dance with Dragons by George R. R. Martin (The Prince of Winterfell, p428)
Then the mists parted, like the curtain opening at a mummer show to reveal some new tableau. The heart tree appeared in front of them, its bony limbs spread wide. Fallen leaves lay about the wide white trunk in drifts of red and brown. The ravens were the thickest here, muttering to one another in the murderers’ secret tongue.
Ramsay’s Wedding ~ Commission for ladyofthedreadfort