It is currently WINTER in WESTEROS during the year 303 AC. The new moon cycle marks a full twenty years since the Mad King was murdered, and his son King Rhaegar ascended the Iron Throne in his place. Though the year is fresh, war in the Narrow Sea has left the Free Cities of Volantis and Tyrosh in ashes, and the Long Night continues to beckon from the Northern fringes of the Seven Kingdoms. With the Queen Lyanna presumed dead, the citizens of the realms look only to each other for survival.
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 Sirens In The Beat Of Your Heart, Tag: Rickard/Shelbs
 Posted: Jan 7 2018, 12:57 PM
is N/A
years old

Tulle and silk fluttered like a furtive butterfly around Wynona’s pale skin that blended almost seamlessly with the barely beige sheets. Her window was cracked open an inch, and with the small hearth having been cold and free of fire since the previous night. She sat perched on the bed, staring at the fat flakes of frozen snow the landed without a sound on the ledge. Raventree Hall was not immune to the icy grasp of winter, but the frozen beast had only ever had a tentative hold on the castle. The snowflakes there had melted on contact, pouring swaths of melted water over the Riverlands. Her shift was devoid of any protection or warmth, but Wyn did not wear it for practicality. The thin and see-through fabric had an obvious purpose: it cupped and accented her curves, and drew the eye to everywhere it shouldn't look.

With a fire unstoked, goosebumps freckled Wyn's flesh. She trod barefoot on the stone floor, her toes curling against the freezing blocks. She reached the jewelry box and methodically searched the small heaps of silver and gold, almost all of the expensive adornments had been provided by not her family, but Rickard. A small smile danced across her bare lips as she thought of the Lord of Winterfell, her lord. She never thought she would end up in the cold halls of the Stark stronghold, much less become a paramour to the patriarch. She carefully slipped off the transparent material, which had done little to keep her warm during the night. She was grateful for the furs that were piled high upon her bed, but she still shivered as she quickly traded the light blue silk lined night slip for a thick red dress. It was wool lined but presented the image of a southern dress, and a certainly not a garment that belonged so far north. She had sewn the thicker lining on herself, permanently scarring her dress. She slipped a matching cape with satin ribbon over her shoulders, admiring her own stitching. She did not usually spend much time on such frivolities, and preferred to drown her skin in the gifts presented to her by her lord.

Slipping on a thin chain adorned lightly with crisp cut gems, Wyn started to weave her own hair. It was a habit she had developed while traveling, and one that continued due to her dislike of servants. Yes, they were a mark of nobility, but their incessant scurrying and lack of good conversation annoyed Wyn to no end. She dealt with them as often as her post commanded, but if something could be done herself that she did not deem beneath her, she would do it. She slipped quietly into the halls of the slowly waking holdfast. She was always an early riser. She had learned when she was quite young that morning was the time to get what you wanted. The lingering drowsiness of sleep made minds into dough; they were easily molded and even more easily subdued. She would often wake her parents at dawn and beg them for whatever fancy crossed her mind that day. A new necklace, a journey across the country, a small ship. Almost every day they would wave her away with a simple yes, and being of their word her parents often conceded her the gifts.

Win tried to ignore the heavy thud of her thick boots on the stone floor. She was used the the whisper of slippers in halls, but even the thick walls of Winterfell could not keep the cold out. She shivered from both heat and cold at once, the icy reality digging into her bones, but she also shivered from the memory of a fire, and the man that she lay with beside it. Another quick smile darted across her lips, so quick an unobservant man would have missed it. Wyn remembered the time she had gone to King's Landing, where everyone was observant. She had felt so at home there, with all the predators and liars. But still under the guidance of her parents, she had no choice but to depart back to the wanting passages of Raventree. She had almost thrown a child's fit when her parent's told her she was to go to an even more remote place. They were sending her as a part of her cousin's marriage delegation, though the real reason was that they could not fathom why a fertile, young, and beautiful girl with the name of those who were once kings had not found a husband. That was because she had made sure they did not hear the rumors, though those rumors could not be described as such due to their overwhelming truth. The truths spoke of her wantonness, of the men she had lured like a harpy into her bed only to cast out when they were unsatisfactory. She had even sampled some of the servants, despite her distaste for them, in order to find the one man who could sate her ever-increasing appetite. She even played around with some of the servant girls, tasting them like she did the pastries they baked. But she did not need a girl or a boy. She needed someone grown, experienced, a man or even a woman who would know just how to quench her thirst.

The memories sang in Wynona's ears, making her oblivious to the world outside. She stumbled over a sharp stone with a near-silent crash, falling into the arms of a hidden alcove. The nearest torch flickered out of sight of the stone bird's nest she had fallen into, and cast her reddened visage into darkness. Steps hit the stone, but they were not hers. Wyn held her breath, hoping that the onlooker had not seen her tumble. No lady should ever be caught up in memories such as the ones she had been.

Note: This is the dress
 Posted: Jan 27 2018, 02:18 PM
Shelbs is Offline
66 years old
House Targaryen
House Stark

Deep in his bones, past their marrow and into the very core, he could feel it. Winter. The days falling shorter, almost too short. The deathly cold inching closer and closer. His age. His shoulders and his knees, his strong neck and broad back, they all ached and creaked in the early mornings, not enough to keep him from rising, but enough to elicit a groan or two as he sought to wake and stretch them each sunrise. Sometimes even the knuckles in his hands felt stiff, as if turning into the very frost he’d presided over for so long, and it took more than a few flexes of the tendons for them to finally seem usable. He always felt like this when winter came, as if the very dread of the cold dark nights began to manifest itself not only in his gut, but in his own joints and vertebrae. And he knew the older he became, the more years that passed him, it would not just be winter to bring these aches. These were all things, though, as inevitable as they were, he could not concern himself with, for his mortality could not be changed just as the turn of the seasons could not be shifted. He would face the Long Night when it came for them, as he knew it would, and he would face the end of his life when he was finally upon his own deathbed. Until then, he remained Warden of the North, taller and larger than most, strong enough to still wield Ice with graceful ease, his fist of frozen iron no weaker than it was when he was decades younger. Perhaps, to his credit, it was now even harder.

Breaking his fast on a simple meal of salted venison and a cup of warmed, frothy ale, Rickard continued his normal routine into Winterfell’s training yards, meeting his two young wards already equipped with their weapons. Instead of entrusting their tutelage with his master-at-arms, it was he who had shoved swords into their grasps, had decorated them with more bruises than any of them cared to count, and had watched them grow and develop their skills before his very eyes. Though it was still the early hours of the morning, the boys were filled with energy and were eager to begin, quickly turning on each other upon their liege’s instruction. Their blunted metal swords clashed and sang until Rickard would interrupt them, redirecting their stances, calling forth new techniques, before allowing them to resume with their duel. From his place in the yards, he watched every jab, swipe and twist they made, jaw clenched when the youngest of the two sent his hooked elbow into the other boy’s face. “Too close, Torrhen,” he instructed sharply, gesturing for his fallen ward to find his feet and climb back out of the snow. Nevermind the fresh stream of warm blood coming from the boy’s nose. “You get too close. And Jon,” his eyes flitted to the other, “you allow him to get too close. Use your swords.”

With some reluctance they turned to each other again, brandishing their weapons and continuing their match. Rickard took a few chance steps back to better observe, but when his gaze noticed a flash of red pass by the windows above him, he found he could not quite look away. A few more seconds, he saw her again through another clear window pane, watching from his spot below as she made her way down the hallway above. If only for a moment, the typically unmoving, unyielding and unnerving Warden of the North could only smile at the sight of her, spurning such thoughts inside of him that they were enough to draw him away from the yards in sheer hope to intercept her path. The sound of clashing metal fading behind him, Rickard moved deftly through the snow, his long cloak of fur and leather floating above his ankles as he journeyed into the castle. Her footsteps like music to him, he slipped into the shadowed alcove that allowed him the sort of patience he’d never been able to exercise with Wynona Blackwood, and waited quietly for her to approach.

Not even the warmed walls of Winterfell, though, could compare to the warmth of her weight when his arms reached out to catch her. A chuckle already in his throat, Rickard secured her close against him, steadying her with his sure hands upon the curves of her waist. His palms, almost like ice against the warmer fabric of her gown, seemed to immediately flush once touching her, easing even the deep ache in his knuckles. “A lady should be more careful,” he cautioned with a gentle smirk, his nostrils filling with the fine plumes of her perfumes. Even in the sliver of darkness, Rickard could feel his grey eyes swimming upon her features. “The Lord of Winterfell would be cross to hear of an injury you sustained.” With his hands still upon her hips, almost unseeingly he leaned forth, lowering his lips to the wing of her ear. “Perhaps,” even his voice dropped a few octaves, gruff and husky, warming the air between them and spreading across her slender nape. He dared to place a ghost-like kiss to the hollow of her lobe. “We won’t tell him.” Sliding his hands from her waist, up either sides of her long spine and finally to wrap themselves around her narrow shoulders, Rickard carefully forced her against the nearest wall, using his own weight and height to pin her against the water-veined stone. His bearded lips hovered just against the side of her temple. "Perhaps he won't know of anything that transpires here..."

 Posted: Mar 4 2018, 11:04 PM
athena is Offline
20 years old
House Stark
House Tallhart

There were many reason to like Winterfell, Jocelyn had found. She had liked it as a girl because of the chance she had to follow her father like a shadow and be involved in the political dealings of her house. She liked it as a woman grown because there were more people in the keep then back home and so more to talk to. Secretly though, she liked it for the lord who ruled there and the time she spent tucked away with him. Rickard Stark was different to her in the best of possible ways, a man who recognized her skills and her flaws yet somehow appreciated her for the woman she was before him. Maybe it was simply that he had no expectations of her that she felt so comforted and calm in his presence.

Jocelyn knew not to be outward in her affections for the man though. She was in Winterfell strictly for business, strictly to be the heir to her father and to look out for the Tallhart’s interested while in Winterfell. She was good with this task, could complete this task and prove to her father that she would be a capable ruler once he was gone. That he had no need to worry and could be proud of the woman he had shaped even if such a shaping had taken away from time she could have spent with her now deceased mother. Her mother would have taught her better how to hold herself and how to flirt with the Warden of the North, but somehow it seemed she did not need those sorts of lessons. She seemed to be doing well enough on her own, or at the least Rickard seemed to enjoy her regardless.

Thoughts were on what was to be done for the day, though mostly she just needed to send a raven to her father with any pertinent information. It was an easy task, and so her time would be spent elsewhere. She always hoped to see Rickard as she wandered the grounds of Winterfell. Even a glimpse of his greying hair was enough to warm her heart even in the frigid air of winter. She knew what had spurred her attraction to the male, the power he held both politically and his strongly built body, but there was much more between herself and the male that she could hardly describe to anyone. Which was a good thing because she didn’t really explain any of it to anyone anyway. No explanation was needed, it felt easy and right in that way. All she really knew was that there was constantly a desire to see the male, to be around him, to feel the warmth she felt whenever he was near, even if they were not being intimate.

As the woman clad in red tripped she expected the cold, hard surface of the floor to meet her and maybe for blood to be drawn from her knees. What met her was quite different. She instead fell into the warm, strong arms of the man she had been thinking of. Any pain to her knee was instantly forgotten as her eyes opened to the older male, her body being righted by him and already pressed against his hard body. Jocelyn bit her lip slightly, feeling her breath catch in her throat for a moment at how close she suddenly was to the male. Her skin felt so warm it was like a fire was lit next to her underneath his hands on her waist. “The Lord of Winterfell I am sure would, like myself, be happy to know I seem to have a savior ready to catch me,” she whispered back, her voice soft as she spoke in return to the male, lips curled into a smirk as well.

Warm lips accompanied by the scruff of beard were at her ear, at her neck, the ghost of a kiss there as well and a shiver going up the girl’s spine that had nothing to do with the chilly air of the North. Her breath was released as he pushed her against a wall, speaking about how the Lord would be displeased to hear of her injury, speaking of secrets. Her own hands went to his back, moving up for a moment before moving back down and finding their way under his cloak, resting on his hips. “It sounds as though we best keep this entire encounter a secret from him, then,” she smirked back to the male, wondering if he was to be so bold as to make any further move on her here where they could easily be discovered. He had nothing to fear in his own keep, surely, but Jocelyn knew it was best to keep it all secret. She turned her head so her lips found his neck, lightly pressing her lips there. “How ever can I repay my savior for not only catching me, but helping me keep the Lord of Winterfell from being upset with me?” she whispered against his neck, unable to stop herself from teasing him back despite where they were at the moment.
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