A Lightness


Chapter 060





She didn’t let it happen again.

Sansa and Sandor made sure that they had a few moments alone together every day.

Sansa couldn’t believe how- normal it felt. She thought it might be awkward. That it might be uncomfortable between them, that she’d be nervous around him. But she wasn’t. It just seemed so perfectly – normal. And so quickly too. Almost immediately after than night under the lemon tree. But they fell into a pattern. She just wanted to kiss him, all the time.

She found herself staring at him throughout the day. Thinking about him when he wasn’t there. A few times during the day she would think of seeing him in the stream. Her palms always became sweaty when she thought of it. When she was sleeping, if it wasn’t a nightmare, it was a dream. Of him. Of being with him. Under the lemon tree. Once, in her bed. She woke up with a start when it happened. She jumped out of her bed with a gasp, suddenly afraid to be in it with her own thoughts.

Sansa never knew she would feel like this about a man. She didn’t really know it was possible. Her septa only told her that being with a man was for the purpose of bearing his children. That it would be pleasurable for him, but not for her. But she always wondered how much a woman who never laid with a man knew so much about the act itself. Sansa used to ask her mother questions when she was young, but she never learned much. She certainly couldn’t ask her anything now. She thought about talking to Shae about it. She certainly knew all there was to know. But then she remembered that Shae was in love with her husband, and she didn’t really want to hear about him in that way. She supposed she could talk to Roslin. She certainly wasn’t as experienced as her mother, or Shae. She was relatively new with it too.

Sansa tried to put those thoughts away for most of the day, but it was almost impossible when she was with him. Sometimes, she was sure he could read her mind, that he knew what she was thinking of him, consciously or unconsciously. They usually went to the godswood, or in her room right behind the door. He never pushed her past the entrance of her room once they were inside of it.

He never held her as tight as he did that night. He didn’t feel her in the same way either. He would hold her head close to his or have his hands on her back. But they didn’t roam, not like they did that first night, not like she wanted them to. He only ever kissed her mouth, not her jaw, her neck, like he did the first time. She found herself pulling him in closer. And he was the one who would push her away, every single time. He was the one to end it. She figured he took those liberties that first night because of how much he had to drink.

But after a few days, she was beginning to wonder if he was tiring of her. If, now that he had kissed her, touched her, that he’d had enough. That he’d gotten what he wanted and he would move on to Mallory for something more. She certainly hadn’t tired of him. With each passing day, she hungered for him more. The better part of herself wondered if he was just being careful, careful not to get too distracted, so they wouldn’t caught.

They’d already been caught once, in the godswood.

He snuck up on them, Sansa hadn’t even heard him moving through the leaves she was so focused on the man in front of her.

He jumped up on them. She pulled away from Sandor and screamed, falling into the ground.

He was on top of her. He licked her face.

“Shaggy! Get off!”

The wolf stood over her and she tried to push him away, but he was too strong. All she heard was Sandor guffawing from where he stood. How he managed to keep his balance, she wasn’t sure.

“Rickon!” She yelled.

Rickon came running through the trees, a long stick in his hand.

Her burst out laughing when he saw her on the ground. “Shaggy!” He hit the stick against the tree. “Shaggy come!” He couldn’t stop laughing, but mercifully the wolf listened and let her go.

She swatted Sandor’s hand away as he went to help her up.

The incident had scared Sansa. Not from being at the mercy of a gigantic direwolf, but from nearly being caught by Rickon.

Sandor had walked her back to her room after another dinner.

They got in her room, they just stood there, looking at each other.

She broke the silence. “What if it was Rickon who found us first?”

He sighed. “I thought the same thing.” He looked, unsure, uncomfortable almost. She thought he was going to suggest that they stop. They were leaving for Deepwood in just three weeks now. Maybe he’s had enough.

But he just looked at her. “We’ll just have to be more careful then.” And he kissed her.

The next morning, Sandor was at her door.

“What is on the schedule for today?” He asked her.

For once, she didn’t have anything planned. She didn’t have anything she needed to do. Only something she wanted to do.

“I haven’t been on a ride for a while.” She looked up at him from under her lashes. “Have you ever seen the wolfswood?”

The sun was covered in grey clouds. It looked like snow, but nothing had fallen. Not yet. They walked to the stables and had her chestnut be prepared. Sandor and Sansa went to get Stranger ready themselves. He helped her up onto her horse, even though she could do so on her own. She would have much rather shared Stranger with him, but she knew how it would look.

They were next to each other, going through the yard, through the gate, and then they were free. She looked at him from the corner of her eye. He was watching her, he looked like he wanted to say something. But she didn’t give him a chance. She put her heels into her horse and they were off. Her hood fell from her head, the cold wind whipped against her face. But it felt good to be out in the open air. She turned her head behind her. Stranger and Sandor were closing in on her. She gasped and tried to go faster. But her chestnut was no competition for Stranger, even with Sandor on his back. Before she knew it, they flew right by her.

“No fair!” She yelled, breathlessly.

They were at the edge of the wolfswood when they stopped. He waited for her there, a smile on his face. She slowed her horse, but didn’t stop once she reached the edge. She went right past him and into the trees. She heard him follow her.

They were quiet in the wood. All she heard was the sound of the earth, twigs and leaves under the hooves of the horses. It was calming. Quiet. Somewhat dark, with no light coming through the leaves. Sandor followed her lead. She didn’t really know where she was going. She so rarely came in here when she was young. They continued for several minutes, until they were deep in the trees. Sansa could hear her heart beating in her ears as she stopped her horse. Sandor stopped next to her. She watched him dismount. She swung her leg around to the side as he came to her. She was sure he could hear her heart from where he stood. She felt her stomach flip inside her when he reached for her. His hands wrapped nearly all the way around her middle. He lifted her up easily enough. She put her hands on his shoulders to steady herself. They stared at each other as he lowered her down, painfully slowly. She thought her heart was going to burst as her face finally reached his. Her feet never touched the ground.

She threw her arms around his neck, wrapping them completely around him. And she kissed him. He wrapped his arms around her middle, holding her to him, still off the ground. She wasted no time, opening her mouth to his. Their tongues met. He was warm. He tasted like – like him. She was sure that it was her new favorite flavor, even better than lemon cakes. She wanted more of him. She wanted him to touch her, to kiss her neck again. But she felt his arms loosen as he put her down. He stood up straight, making it impossible to reach him on her own. He took her arms and slipped them off of his neck.

He stared at her now, but his eyes were softer than before.

Sansa huffed, frustrated now. She walked away from him, away from the horses. She heard him following her. She crossed her arms. She kept picturing him with Mallory and it made her feel sick. She stopped at a tree with a vast trunk. She turned around, spun on him.

“Why do you always push me away?”

He looked shocked. It faded quickly, into a laugh. It only made her more frustrated. She pushed him, but the force only pushed her back against the tree while he remained still. “Don’t laugh at me.”

He stopped laughing, but an evil smirk still remained on his face.

“Don’t. You are always pushing me away. Just tell me why. If you don’t want to do this anymore, then we don’t have to. You were the one who said not to waste any time. I thought that meant-“ She stopped. She didn’t know what she wanted to say. She realized she sounded like a little girl, whining the way she was.

And he laughed again. She wanted to hit him. But she had a better idea. She grabbed the front of his cloak and yanked him toward her. He wasn’t expecting it and he fell forward. He put his hands out to catch himself and they landed on the tree, on either side of her head. His face was close. She kissed him again. She could tell he was holding back. If there was ever a time not to, it was now, in the quiet, in the private wood, with no one around. So she opened her mouth again and she nipped at his lower lip. She felt him take a sharp breath in, and then his tongue met hers again. She pulled him closer, he closed the space between them. His one hand was still against the tree, but he wrapped the other around her lower back. She was breathless and dizzy. They were clumsy. Their teeth clashed. She laughed into his mouth and pulled him even closer. He took another step and then they were pressed against each other, closer than they ever were before. Closer than they were under the lemon tree. She felt him everywhere. Her chest against his. His leg in between hers. He moved from her mouth and she smiled as he did. His mouth was at her jaw again, her ear, and when he reached her neck she was sure her chest would explode. She sighed from the feeling, chills running down her spine. He pressed himself into her, once. And again. Then she felt it. Him. His manhood, hard, against her. She froze. And after a second, so did he. He groaned into her neck and pulled away.

His hands moved behind her head again, against the tree. He sighed, and looked at her. “You wanted to know why I’m always the one to stop.”

Her mouth was open and her eyes were wide, staring at him.

He closed his eyes and sighed again. He stepped back and turned around, walking back toward the horses.

Sansa didn’t know what to say. She wasn’t expecting that at all. Well, of course you should have expected it, stupid. He’s a man after all. She didn’t know what to think. She supposed she should be-relieved. She’d been so worried that he was getting sick of her. With a slow, dizzying realization, Sansa thought that it probably would have been much easier if he had.