i know ive already gotten into this many times before but arya isnt too damaged to live and love. that opinion is fucked up and stupid. like honestly pull your head out of your ass. arya is traumatized but that doesnt mean she’s not “”a normal person”” anymore than she’s “”a fantasy terminator”” (forget d&d’s hackjob) she is a real person - so to speak. thats the point. she’s a child and like so many others who have been exposed to this kind of violence she’s struggling. also just like literally every other pov btw. grrm is using many aspects of the child solider with her character. which is a situation that is all too real in war - even the ones going on today. these kids are the ones who are left homeless and starving and scared. they have their childhood torn from them and are forced to commit violence. thats arya. but she’s a not monster. she’s not too far gone either. she’s still a human being who deserve a life. because arya hasn’t lost her humanity. she is still driven by a desire to be with her pack - whether thats her friends or family. she loves deeper than any character in this series. and there are those who love her in return and will continue to do so no matter what. like gendry.
gendry and arya share very similar experiences. he’s her companion for two books. they both suffered and fought alongside each other in the war. they saw their friends die and dug graves and witnessed atrocities. they are both child soldiers who have killed in battle. gendry knows that arya instigated weasel soup and he’s angry - but not scared. he saw her hands covered in blood after she silt the harrenhal guards throat but he never recoils from arya. while they’re on the run he still makes sure arya sleeps and eats first. he doesnt see her as a monster. she’s a little girl who tries to be brave but has been through a lot. after all the death and trauma he still teases and play wrestles with her. when she punches him he just laughs. with gendry she’s able to just be arya from winterfell again. she can let down her guard and drop the aliases. he thinks her hands are soft even though he knows what theyve done. gendry only smiles with her. he’s clearly harboring a deep affection for her. and arya cares about him too. he’s her “pack” and her “true friend”
gendry has no reason to fear arya. she would never hurt him. their entire relationship is built on trust. he’s also in no position to judge her since he’s working for an undead zombie who casually hangs people. which, again, is an experience not unlike what arya is going through with the faceless men. she’s not too damaged for him. she’s not too dark or scary either. they are kindred spirits who are going through many of the same struggles. they’re feeling the same grief and fear and anger. if anyone can understand what arya’s gone through its gendry.