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Part XXXIII - Bran

The wedding feast was unlike any celebration Bran had ever seen. Lined with tables decorated with the finest dinnerware filled with the tastiest dishes and sweetest wines in the Seven Kingdoms, the throne room of the Red Keep was transformed into a festival of the many cultures of the Seven Kingdoms. For just one night, the darkness of the war-torn kingdom slipped away, replaced by the bright joy of drinking and dancing.

There was a time when Bran would have sat silently, brooding in the misfortune of his broken legs, looking with a mix of longing and disdain at the dancing, something he would never get to do. But that was a different Bran, a summer Bran, from a different time, before Robb had been declared King in the North, before the war. Instead, he just sipped the wine, watching with amusement as one of the Sand Snakes tried to flirt with Jojen.

"Weddings make strange bedfellows, do they not?" Bran turned to see Oberyn Martell sliding onto the bench beside him. "My daughters Dorea and Loreza have a friendly wager, to see which one can bring Howling Reed's son to their bedchamber tonight."

Just the thought of Jojen in bed with one of the Red Viper's daughters almost brought Bran to tears of laughter. "They should find it easier to bring him there by knifepoint than through charm and wit - Jojen seems to care about pleasure as much as a eunuch."

"Give him time; he will one day come across someone that will weaken his resolve. All men do. Speaking of," Oberyn looked at Bran keenly, "you are a man grown, and not yet even betrothed." Bran sighed, ready to launch on his standard answer for whenever someone raised the issue, which was often. 'I understand you have been busy, trying to preserve what remains of the North since the Night's Watch fell. But Lord Eddard has now seen seven years; it is time you begin to think about your own needs, even if only a little."

"Thank you for your understanding and your concern, Prince Oberyn, but I assure you, I will concern myself with own person only when this war is complete and my family is safe."

"Of course, Lord Stark." He raised his glass, and gestured to Bran to do the same. "To peace in the realm, may it come swift as a dragon." After drinking, he added, "And in no small part thanks to your efforts, Bran. You have done much for the realm; it has not gone unnoticed. And you have done much for the successful execution of this celebration. You have my brother's thanks, and mine as well." Standing, he added with a wink, "And the thanks of my daughters as well."

When the Dornish prince had left, Meera and Hodor came and sat with him. Meera picked at the roast, while Hodor attacked an entire chicken as if a lion. "What did the Red Viper want?"

"The same thing his daughters want with your brother, I'm sure."

Small signs of a grin graced the edges of Meera's mouth. "My fault, at least on that account. I sowed the idea in their heads that wooing Jojen would be an excellent wager. The future of House Reed is his, it was time he stopped worrying so much and enjoyed life a little."

Bran's sister danced by, arm-in-arm with a young knight he did not recognize, both grinning like madmen. "Isn't the celebration just marvelous?! The Dornish sure know how to throw a party. Ooh, that looks good." She reached down and took a piece of chicken from Bran's plate, and he could smell the alcohol on her breath. "Meera, come join us in the dance, there is a certain Dornish lord who wants to meet you!"

"Thank you, Sansa. Perhaps later, once I have had a chance to enjoy this food. But go on, don't let us detain you." Sansa tried to object, but not strongly, and once Bran added his voice to Meera's, she returned to the festivities.

"I have never seen your sister this drunk before."

"Nor I. She has had it tough lately, with the passing of the Queen and the rumor that Joffrey wishes to wed her. It is good to see her smile, even if because of drink."

"Does she know?" Bran shook his head. "I suppose that is for the better," she said. "No need to have her worry more than she has to."

"Aye," Bran responded. "On another note, Jojen!" he called out, turning in his seat. "Jojen, could you -"

Jojen was gone, and so were the Sand Snakes.

______________________________________________________________________________________________________​

Time for a Westerosi wedding everybody! Woo-hoo!

The Eight Kings:
1. Joffrey Baratheon, King on the Iron Throne
2. Stannis Baratheon, Lord of the Stormlands (captured)
3. Renly Baratheon, Lord of the Stormlands (deceased)
4. Robb Stark, King in the North and of the Trident (deceased). Succeeded by Eddard Stark, Son of Robb Stark (infant)...in-game, merely claimants
5. Balon Greyjoy, King of the Iron Isles (deceased); Succeeded by Euron Crows-Eye
6. Mance Rayder, The Free Folk King in the North (holds the North and Beyond-the-Wall)
7. Aegon Targaryen, King in Griffin's Roost, and Daenerys Targaryen, Queen of Mereen
8. Harold Hardying, King of the Mountain and the Vale

Other important lords:
1. Mace Tyrell, Lord of the Reach.
2. Doran Martell, Prince of Dorne
3. Harrold Hardying, Lord of the Vale
4. Oberyn Martell, Lord of Plankytown
5. Petyr Baelish, Master of Coin
6. Bran Stark, Lord Regent of the North
7. Jon Snow, Lord Commander of the Night's Watch, Captain of the Blackbird, deceased; Edd Tollet, Acting Lord Commander
 

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Well, someone is going to die. The questions are who dies, who was the killer, and who will be blamed.
 

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I don't think who was getting married was ever mentioned. Anyway, Westerosi weddings are often very interesting. Nice to see some of Martin's style in the food descriptions. :)
 

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Orange Wedding?

Naming Westerosi weddings by color is one of my favorite little details of the books/show.

Well, someone is going to die. The questions are who dies, who was the killer, and who will be blamed.

People dying at a wedding? [mocked shock face] Unheard of!

I don't think who was getting married was ever mentioned. Anyway, Westerosi weddings are often very interesting. Nice to see some of Martin's style in the food descriptions. :)

Trystane and Myrcella. It's been mentioned a few times in passing, but has often been overshadowed in the chapters by much more pressing events
 

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Part XXXIV - The Serving Girl

"Aye, what do you have for this round, girl? The pig or the goose?"

The voice came from one of Walder Frey's sons, although she was not sure which. "Chicken this time, milord, with the best seasonings from the east."

The Frey smiled. "Well bring it here, girl, I'll take a bite. And," he added as she turned to leave, "if you come back later, mayhaps I'll have a bite of something sweeter, eh girl?"

Inwardly, she cringed; he was more than twenty years her elder, twice married, and with a face that was not ever comely. But he was a lord, and tonight she was just a serving girl, so she winked. "Who knows where the night will lead us?"

Arya had been at feasts many times in her life before, but that was before the war, and she had been seated in seats of honor on the dais, and not ever among even the lower nobles. There she always had to "act like a lady," as Septa Mordane put it - although "act more like Sansa" was what Arya heard. Jon had been right, it is more fun down here. When Robert and his court visited Winterfell years before, her mother forced Jon Snow to sit with the servants and the staff, away from the royal family, and to hear of it, never had a feast been better. Of course, he was incredibly drunk, which helped in his enjoyment although Arya had not realized it at the time.

"Excuse me, girl!" Arya turned to see a girl about her size, most likely a few years younger than her. She handed her a book, saying, "Bring this to Brandon Stark up on the dais, and tell him that it is from Lyanna Mormont." Arya took the book, wondering if perhaps her brother and this Mormont girl had some sort of courtship going on, but Lyanna put an end to that. "Take that smirk off your face, girl; I know what you are thinking, and if you even hint at it I will drag you to Bear Island and feed you to the bears." Without even listening to a response, she stalked off, but not without giving Arya one last glare.

A few minutes - and a few flirtatious glances at some drunk and lusty nobles - later, Arya made her way to the dais, delivering Lady Mormont's gift to Bran. He flipped through the pages briefly before pausing on one. "If you see Lady Lyanna again tonight, please tell her I thank you for this gift. But now I must ask a favor of you," he added, closing the book and laying it in front of him. "Do you know my sister, Sansa Stark?"

"I do, milord. I delivered her supper to her once when she was holding vigil over the Queen Margaery."

"Then for that I thank you; the Queen's death was a hard time for us all, but especially for my sweet sister, who was her dear friend. Which perhaps explains the current predicament." Bran frowned. "She is exceedingly drunk, almost as much as the Imp; find someone to shadow my sister and make sure she stays safe. She is very fragile, more so than she would wish to admit."

At that Arya had to stifle a laugh; she had not seen Sansa at that point, but the thought of her sister drunk amused her to no end. Septa Mordane would be ripping her hair out. "I will talk to my friend, and we will keep our eyes on her."

Bran thanked her, but when she turned to leave, the girl next to her brother grabbed her arm. "Your face looks familiar and your accent is Northern. Where are your from, girl?"

Oh, gods. Not now. One wrong word could ruin everything. "I am Berren of Torrhen's Square. My father was a cobbler, and some believe my mother's father was Edwyle Stark due to my face - she was a Snow in any case. My family fled south when the wildlings came; only I survived, and when I came to King's Landing I became the serving girl to Lord Glover. And somehow I ended up here." That seemed to satisfy her, and she dismissed Arya.

As she stepped off the dais and began to make her way back to the kitchens to get the next round, she felt a tap on her shoulder. "Some chicken, girl, if you please," Prince Oberyn ordered; Arya had almost forgotten she had been holding it. "Take a seat, girl. Rest for a minute, you have been busy tonight."

"But my lord, the next dish is about to come out, and the cooks will be mad at me if -"

The Dornish prince laughed. "That was not a request, it was an order. And if the cooks get mad at the serving girl, the Red Viper will be angry with them! And would they want that?" Arya could not argue with that logic, so she took a seat next to Oberyn, who passed her a cup of wine. "Have a drink, you've earned it. Finest wine from the Arbor." Between sips, she asked him if he and his brother were pleased with the wedding.

"It has been wonderful. My brother is most pleased - and so is my nephew, you can see." He gestured at the couple in the seats of honor, where Trystane and Myrcella had sat almost the entirety of the feast, each deep in each other's eyes. "Yes, Trystane has been looking forward to this day ever since he laid eyes on the Princess. She is fair of face, I can sure you that, and her soul is sweet. Such a shame that such a beautiful and tender thing has such a weighty curse of being born of a Lannister."

"Even now I do not understand how the daughter of Cersei could end up like Myrcella," Arya wondered aloud.

Oberyn looked at her quizzically. "Is it not obvious, or are all Northern girls so dense? It's because the Imp sent her to be raised in Dorne! She may be Lannister blood, but she has the heart of a Dornish woman. At any rate," he added with a smile, "what's done is done, and the past is in the past. When the King Joffrey raises his glass to drink to the health of his sister and my nephew, the bells of the Red Keep that will ring in celebration will usher in a new era of cooperation between Dorne and the crown. But I'm sure you already knew that."

___________________________________________________________________________________________________________________​

"The whiskerfish, milord."

Bran turned. "Already? But I just started my veal."

Down the table, the King overheard Bran's comment. "There have been three songs from the singers and a falconry presentation since the veal was delivered, Stark. I advise you to pay attention, or you may miss the wedding entirely."

Arya wanted to hit Joffrey right then and there, but fortunately Bran answered before she did anything stupid. "It was meant in jest, Your Grace; the feast is moving so quickly, one blink and it's half-over! If only pleasure would linger like pain, and suffering be as fleeting as pleasure, and the world would surely be a much more festive place!"

"Aye, Lord Stark. That's why I drink." To emphasize his point, Tyrion emptied his cup and gestured for it to be refilled.

"I dare say, Lord Tyrion, you have drank more than twice your weight tonight!" Bran joked.

The Hand of the King shook his head. "You greatly underestimate me. I have drunk twice Hodor's weight!"

As everyone laughed, Bran gestured to Arya. "Have you seen my sister?" he whispered to her.

Arya nodded. "Don't worry, Arianne Martell is with her, and she has taken the cup from Lady Sansa's hands. She will be having no more wine tonight, although she will still be feeling it on the morrow."

"Good. Hopefully she will learn, and not head down the Imp's path. Drink is fine, but not in such extraordinary excess. Now, if you could fine Lady Mormont for me -" A sudden clanging sound from down the table cut her brother's request short.

At the head of the dais, once he had everyone's attention, Joffrey stood. "Lords and Ladies, it is that time of night!! But, on behalf of both my family and the Martells, I would like to just say a few words before we get down to the bedding." After a brief round of applause and shouts of excitement died down, the King continued. "Tonight is an important night for my sister and my brother-in-law, and for our family. The Baratheons and the Martells are two of the most prestigious houses in Westeros, but ever since the conquests of Aegon Targaryen, House Baratheon and House Martell have fought against each other more than hand-in-hand for the good of the realm. Tonight, however, marks the beginning of a new era." Outside, the bells began to ring, starting low but gradually increasing in volume as Joffrey spoke. The bells. "Tonight, two houses become one, two foes become family. As we ring the bells throughout the city so that the whole of King's Landing may join in celebration, let us..."

As Joffrey continued to speak, Arya slowly and subtly began to move towards the king. The bells will usher in a new era of cooperation between Dorne and the crown. Arya's heart was pounding so strongly that it felt like it would break free from her chest. As her eyes darted around the room, she locked eyes with Meera Reed, who subtly but clearly revealed to her alone a knife hidden in the back end of her boot. As Joffrey raised his cup to drink to the newly-weds' health before the bedding, in one smooth motion Arya swiped the dagger, grabbed Joffrey by the back of his cloak, and pressed the cold steel to his neck.

Behind her, she heard the sound of glass shattering, and the entire room erupted in chaos...

____________________________________________________________________________________________________________​

Weddings are always exciting affairs in Westeros, and hardly ever for the right reasons. Of all the marriages we've seen in the books/show, have we seen any with a "happy" ending? Definitely not Edmure and Roslin for sure. I feel like they all either end with death, or torture, or something awful. Tyrion and Sansa perhaps? Do they even count as married?

Whatever. Who else is pumped for S6E10? TBOTB was so awesome I'm still hyping over it, and if Miguel Sapochnik nails "The Winds of Winter" as well, I'd want him to direct every important episode for the rest of the series...
Granted, they're all important, but you know what I mean. In any case, give that man at least one Emmy, maybe more. It was incredible.

Anyways, while we wait for the next episode, we get back to our version of the story - a very different canon with very different twists and turns. No Red Wedding, no Purple Wedding, but still a Wedding. What color should this one be? Only time will tell. (Well, time and you guys. I'm intrigued about, when all is said and done, what you guys will call it). Until next time everybody, keep your friends close, and your enemies donning black.
 

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Maybe the Silver Wedding on account of the colour of the blade. Meera being part of the conspiracy as probably more suprising to me than it should be. Anyway, I am excited for this to be resolved one way or another.
 

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I hate to say it, but... go Joffrey. He can't die here, we don't even know who the ninth king is yet. Arya has doomed herself as far as I can tell.

Less important, but I enjoyed the small scene between Tyrion and Bran. If only canon had more opportunities for them to talk.
 

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I hate to say it, but... go Joffrey. He can't die here, we don't even know who the ninth king is yet. Arya has doomed herself as far as I can tell.

Less important, but I enjoyed the small scene between Tyrion and Bran. If only canon had more opportunities for them to talk.
I don't see why Joffrey is indispensable. Tommen or his daughter can reign after him and the council can continue to rule just like it has been doing for Joffrey's entire reign.
 
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I don't see why Joffrey is indispensable. Tommen or his daughter can reign after him and the council can continue to rule just like it has been doing for Joffrey's entire reign.

I rather like Tommen, it's just that this has all happened because of Joffrey. I just feel like this particular story ends with the insane man-child.
 

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Part XXXV - Arianne

[note - beginning of chapter overlaps with beginning of previous chapter]

Keeping a Northern lady from overindulging in wine was not how she expected to be enjoying her brother's wedding feast, and yet that was precisely where Arianne found herself with the daughter of Ned Stark, who decided - on tonight, the worst possible of all nights - to see exactly why the Imp was eternally drunk. Although if half of what Sansa had told her about the King were true, the real surprise was that she had not tried turning to the drink before.

Not all her stories were tragic, however: most were fairly pleasant and a few even downright funny, particularly when she spoke of growing up in Winterfell. "And when Septa Mordane went to check on Arya's needlework, she had suddenly vanished. Soon after, she comes running through the room with a bow in hand with Bran chasing her. Robb told me later that day that Father and Mother had been watching Bran's archery lessons when Arya snuck behind them and shot better than all my brothers. Oh dear, to see Septa Mordane's face once more!"

Despite herself, Arianne did chuckle at that one; this Arya girl sounded remarkably like her cousins, and the Sand Snakes had driven many a septa to drink. But she did not chuckle when Sansa pointed to a table behind Arianne and whispered, "She's right over there, talking with your uncle. Just make sure you don't tell anybody, she wants to remain a secret."

Silently Arianne cursed, and then turned to where Sansa was pointing. Just a few tables away, her uncle Oberyn was sitting next to the same serving girl with cropped black hair that had summoned her to watch Sansa - Arya Stark, she guessed, if Sansa was indeed being truthful. "Well then why are you telling me?" Before she could answer, Arianne rebuked her for her carelessness, then asked her to continue telling stories from Winterfell.

As Arianne absentmindedly listened to the Stark girl's tales, her thoughts wandered to the day at hand. The bells were the key, her father had told her - well, that and the girls. She had assumed Doran had meant the Sand Snakes at the time, but if that girl was indeed Arya Stark in disguise, and Oberyn was talking to her...things must be much more complicated. She hated that her father refused to reveal to her the whole plan. Nobody must know more than they need to do, so that if somebody got caught, the whole operation was not compromised. A sound strategy, she knew, but ignorance made her uncomfortable - especially when her part of the plan was simply to send word to her father's army if things went wrong.

After some time, Sansa's eyes began to close, and Arianne ordered her to bed. She protested at first, but after she fell asleep for a brief moment and her face almost fell into her dinner, she followed Arianne back to her chambers, and without even undressing collapsed onto her bed and fell asleep. Upon assuring that her chambermaids would take care of her for the rest of the evening, she then returned to the feast just as Joffrey stood to address those in attendance.

"Lords and Ladies, it is that time of night!! But, on behalf of both my family and the Martells, I would like to just say a few words before we get down to the bedding. Tonight is an important night for my sister and my brother-in-law, and for our family..." As the King spoke, the bells began to toll - softly at first, then gradually louder - to celebrate a new era's beginning, he said. As she saw her cousins spread throughout the room and Arya Stark standing on the dais just a few feet from Joffrey, she knew that it now was the time.

"And so," Joffrey continued, "let us then take a cue from my Uncle Tyrion and drink to -" He never got to finish the statement, as quick as lightning Arya produced a dagger from thin air and held it to the King's throat as the stained-glass windows behind him shattered, sending the entire feast into chaos. Throughout the throne room, the Sand Snakes jumped into action, seizing important noblemen and officials in Joffrey's administration, with Obara coming to Arya's aid in the arrest of Joffrey. All this happened within seconds, before the shattered glass even hit the floor.

Throughout it all, Arianne's attention remained fixed on the windows, for from the cloud of dust and glass emerged what appeared to Arya to be a large serpent with what appeared to be wings, black as midnight; perched on its back was with a girl with hair so blonde it appeared silver. Through the shattered remains of the glass windows, she saw two more serpents behind them, still outside - one bronze-and-green, with a silver-haired young man on its back, the other white and gold, with no rider.

It was not until she saw Barristan Selmy and Jorah Mormont dragging Joffrey and his Kingsguard to the black cells did she finally understand the breadth of her father's plan.

_____________________________________________________________________________________________​

Before anybody asks, no, the story is not yet over. Far from it, in fact.

In-game, Aegon is the King on the Iron Throne while Dany is the Queen of Mereen, but it was Dany's army that captured King's Landing.

The Eight Kings:
1. Joffrey Baratheon, King on the Iron Throne (in the black cells)
2. Stannis Baratheon, Lord of the Stormlands (captured)
3. Renly Baratheon, Lord of the Stormlands (deceased)
4. Robb Stark, King in the North and of the Trident (deceased). Succeeded by Eddard Stark, Son of Robb Stark (infant)...in-game, merely claimants
5. Balon Greyjoy, King of the Iron Isles (deceased); Succeeded by Euron Crows-Eye
6. Mance Rayder, The Free Folk King in the North (holds the North and Beyond-the-Wall)
7. Aegon Targaryen, King on the Iron Throne, and Daenerys Targaryen, Queen of Mereen and on the Iron Throne
8. Harold Hardying, King of the Mountain and the Vale

Other important lords:
1. Mace Tyrell, Lord of the Reach.
2. Doran Martell, Prince of Dorne
3. Oberyn Martell, Lord of Plankytown
4. Petyr Baelish, Hand of the King/Queen
5. Bran Stark, Lord Regent of the North
6. Jon Snow, Lord Commander of the Night's Watch, Captain of the Blackbird, deceased; Edd Tollet, Acting Lord Commander
 

TheAnguishedOne

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Huh... The Martells must be feeling pretty happy right now. Dany and Aegon have disposed Joffrey? Well, it's not like this war is over. Again, there is one missing king and several wars against the throne still active. That said, it isn't hard to imagine what the Targaryens will decide to do with Stannis, Joffrey and his siblings. I don't know who to root for at this stage.

Speaking of, I am hoping Stannis at least gets to talk to Dany or Joffrey before he is likely fed to a dragon.
 

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What a twist!(in the voice of Shamalan). Joffrey would be lord Paramount of the Stormlands, so he and Tyrion can still put up resistance if they escape. Interesting to see an AAR where the POV doesn't win.
 
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Part XXXVI - Daenerys

"Fetch the Usurper's brother from the dungeons, Lord Baelish. Oh, and," she added as the newly-minted Lord of Harrenhal turned to leave, "send a messenger down to the docks and see if the Blackbird has landed in port yet. I promised Ed that my husband and I would meet with him as soon as his ships landed."

"He should not have been made Hand," Barristan Selmy remarked after Baelish had gone. "He has risen as far as he has through nothing but treachery and deceit. I trust him not."

"That was his one request, when he came to me with support from the Iron Bank, the alliance with Aegon, and Arya Stark," she pointed out. "It was a small price to pay, I would think - he is very clever, and with both Aegon and I co-ruling, we should have less need for the small council than any previous ruler in Westeros."

Ser Barristan shook his head. "Even so, do you think this man will be satisfied just being the Hand of the King?"

"He was born a small lord on the Fingers, and will die the Lord of Harrenhal and Hand of the King and Queen."

"And what makes you think he will stop?" her advisor snapped. Lowering his voice, he continued, "Your Grace, I served with him on Robert Baratheon's small council for several years - he has risen far, and yes, he has his uses, but if you think that he will ever be satisfied, you are gravely mistaken."

Daenerys searched for her cup on the table, lettering her annoyance at the aged knight's continued insistence on this matter die down before responding. "Well who would you have liked us to appoint then? You?"

"In my younger days I would have been honored to serve as Hand, it is true, but I am much too old to govern." Ser Barristan stroked his beard a moment before responding. "Prince Doran would serve well although his gout slows him. Brandon Stark has shown himself immensely valuable."

"I made him a promise that we would take back the North: he would never serve on the small council until his nephew is restored as Lord of Winterfell."

"One of Mace Tyrell's bannerman, perhaps - that would help ensure the loyalty of the Reach."

Before she could respond, a knock came from the door, and in Stannis Baratheon was dragged in chains by two Unsullied. "Put him in a chair and unchain him," she ordered.

Once that was done, Stannis rubbed his wrists. He was once a great lord, she could tell, but was clearly battered by his time in the black cells, with a gaunt face and thin figure, likely from malnutrition. "I thought there were two of you," he said after a long silence.

"My husband the King is out now with Ser Jorah, Prince Oberyn, and Lord Bolton looking for Joffrey's son Tywin and the Imp; they disappeared during yesterday's coup. I stayed here to put the Red Keep back in order."

"And you're starting with me."

"And I'm starting with you." Pausing a moment, she made a show of looking him over. "Tell me, Lord Stannis, what would you do if our situation was reversed? If I sat in that chair, a defeated Queen, with my life in your hands...what would you do?"

"We wouldn't be in this situation. You would already be dead, you and every last member of your family, to get rid of any claimants." He spoke with defiance, but a false one, a man trying to maintain his honor as he looked not only his own death, but that of his daughter, right in the eye.

"Yes, of course, that seems like the most logical route...but the King and I have decided against that."

"Excuse me, Your Grace?" Stannis looked at her quizzically. "Did you say what I think you said?"

Smiling, Dany nodded. "Yes, Lord Stannis. You see, we are not Usurpers like your brother was; we merely took what was ours - no one else has a true claim. You will be punished for your insurrection against the Crown, make no mistake, but it will not be with your daughter's life, or your own." Stannis opened his mouth to respond, but she raised her hand to silence him. "They say that Dragonstone is filled with obsidian; the Night's Watch finds that valuable, for whatever reason. Therefore you shall turn the island over to them, and serve as their castellan there. We will find a suitable match for your daughter, and her husband will be named Lord of Storm's End and named to the small council."

"Very well; those are much better terms than anyone would have expected, Your Grace, and I owe you both my daughter's life."

After Stannis had left, Selmy remarked, "That was very kind of you, Your Grace. I....did not expect that."

"It was Aegon's idea, Ser Barristan," she answered. "The lords of the Stormlands will be more likely to listen to someone with Baratheon blood, but we still get the opportunity to choose our own and punish rebels and usurpers."

"Do you have anybody in mind, Your Grace?"

"I only met him yesterday, but Brandon Stark would be my preferred choice; he seems a clever and loyal young man. I'm just not sure he would be willing to leave the North, at least until the North is retaken."

So they continued to discuss the matter, as well as smaller matters relating to the daily operation of King's Landing and the Red Keep, until a knock came on the door, and Eddison Tollett was announced. He entered the room and stood there, hands folded in front of him, looking at Dany; she waited for him to speak, but he stood in silence, so eventually she greeted him. "Good evening, Lord Commander."

"True, it is evening, but it is not good so long as the Others are out there." After a pause, he continued, "You know why I am here, I'm sure. My fleet followed yours, as I said we would, for what you promised us."

Just as he said he would. Yes, she made promises, and she did intend to keep them for the most part, but they were promises made from a combination of threats and guilt. "Lord Commander, we only arrived in King's Landing yesterday, you cannot think that we would be ready just yet. We need time - a fortnight, at the least."

"A fortnight is an eternity when winter is coming. While you play games here in King's Landing, the army of the dead grows in strength. We must be at the Wall to meet them - with or without your promises...if you had not decimated half our fleet, perhaps we would not need your help, but you did. I already sent ships with orders to Dragonstone to start mining dragonglass. I have spoken with Jon's brother, and the North will sail with us. But if we are going to win, we need the Unsullied, and we need the dragons."

"The Imp has fled with Joffrey's heir, the Vale is still in revolt, and the Riverlands are still under attack by wildlings!" Daenerys snapped at the black brother. "You cannot possibly expect me to -"

"I can, and I will." He paused for a moment, staring Dany down. "Very well, then. We set sail at dawn in three days; I pray you change your mind." As he left, he began to close the door behind him, then turned back towards her. "The Starks and I are giving Jon Snow the Night's Watch burial rights in the godswood at midday tomorrow. It would be for the best if you stayed away."

_______________________________________________________________________________________________________________​
 

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Dany made Littlefinger her Hand? Ned Stark is screaming from the grave at her stupidity, and she deserves whatever betrayal he pulls off.

As for Stannis' fate... better than I had expected. He's sent to the Wall and his daughter's children will rule the Stormlands. An end to the Baratheons, but things could have been much worse.
 

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Dany is at least taking the wildlings and the Others seriously. I can't help but think Littlefinger is plotting some new betrayal. He's supported, what, four kings now?
 

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  • Stellaris: Megacorp
  • Crusader Kings II: Jade Dragon
  • Imperator: Rome
  • Europa Universalis IV: Cossacks
  • Cities: Skylines - After Dark
  • Semper Fi
  • Hearts of Iron III: Their Finest Hour
  • Hearts of Iron III
  • For the Motherland
  • Europa Universalis IV: Wealth of Nations
  • Europa Universalis IV: Art of War
  • Crusader Kings II: Sword of Islam
  • Crusader Kings II: Sunset Invasion
  • Crusader Kings II: Sons of Abraham
  • Crusader Kings II: The Republic
  • Crusader Kings II: Legacy of Rome
Part XXXVIII - The Wandering Soul

The castle was empty - even the ravens had gone from the rookery, and the stables housed no horses, only bones. He had wandered for what felt like days, weeks even, when he heard the voice - faint, indecipherable, but a voice calling to him, he was sure of it.

It was coming from the crypts.

He stood at the top of the stairs, staring down at the spiral staircase into the darkness of the abyss. He had been here before, countless times in fact, but he never went down; it was not his place. So why did it keep calling to him?

The voice whispered his name from the deep. "Snow. Snow. Snow."

"It is not my place! I am no Stark!" he yelled. But that only made the voice more persistent, raising from a whisper; soon more voices joined in, calling his name. Summoning him, he was sure. It was no use; he had to go.

Step by step, one by one, he descended, feeling the wall at his side to guide him down into the darkness. With each step, the darkness grew colder, more stifling, the voices louder and more incoherent. He wanted to scream.

All of a sudden, the darkness cleared, and there was silence. He had reached the bottom and was now in the crypts of Winterfell; countless statues of the Starks of Winterfell, the old Kings in the North, glared at him, each with a sword over his lap. They looked at him with piercing eyes, as if they were ready to pounce at the outsider. As he looked around the room, his eyes caught on a pair of statues that looked familiar, as if he had seen them before, although he could not place from where. One was an older man, about forty, the other much younger, as if he could be the older man's son; the younger wore the crown of the Kings of Winter, while the head of the older statue was bare.

And suddenly the older statue stood up, fading into color from the white stone. "Jon," he said, "it is time we talked."
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I think it's time we finally finish this story, isn't it?