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I'm Holding You Closer Than Most (Cause You Are My Heaven)

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Jon is cold and scared and lonely, far away from his home and family. Daenerys is close and warm, beautiful and willing. The truth is she's conquered him with fire and blood and now she expects him to love her. If that's what she wants, all he can give her is a lie, but pretending is easier than he could have imagined, perhaps because it helps him forget.

After, she speaks of fate and magic, of destiny and prophecy, of marriage and alliance. He thinks of duty and family, of his guilt and the unspeakable feelings he can't even allow his mind to wander to, and he accepts.

She tries to be fair, reminding him that her dragons are the only children she'll ever have, burdening his conscience even more. Yet if he doesn't even have the luxury to dwell on his own desires, why should he care about her feelings?

He's a man who once dreamed of holding a son of his own blood in his arms, but his people have put their trust in him, so he'll be a father to them first. Daenerys is a woman with dreams of her own, but to him she can't be more than a means to an end. He can't love her the way he once loved Ygritte and if she's a true Queen, she'll understand that, but for now it's safer to live the lie.

He marries her in a dilapidated Sept on the shore of a small stream, repeating empty words. He wonders whether a vow is still a vow if it's spoken in the sight of gods he doesn't believe in. 

***

The Northern Lords don't take well to the news of Jon's marriage. Sansa tries to ignore her heart dropping into the depths of her belly and swallows back the bile rising in her throat. She speaks up for him, no doubt in her mind about her loyalty to him. She defends his decision as necessary for the alliance he sought to make, but internally she curses him to the seventh hell for being a thrice-damned fool.

At night she lies alone in her cold bed and weeps for herself, for being a stupid girl with stupid dreams who never learns. Cersei Lannister once told her that a woman's best weapon is between her legs. It seems Daenerys Targaryen has mastered that lesson as well.

When the truth about Jon's parents comes out, everything threatens to fall apart again, even with the White Walkers on their doorstep. The lords declare her Queen in the North, forsaking their fealty to Jon over his second 'betrayal'. 

A solution is proposed and Sansa wants to scream and rage, but she doesn't. Jon does. "I'm already married to you," he objects. "She's my sister!"

Daenerys just smiles and shrugs. "Aegon the Conqueror had two wives as well, the both of them his sisters."

Aegon married Rhaenys for love and Visenya for duty. Sansa has no illusions about which of the two she is in this story.

She marries Jon in Winterfell's Godswood and it's bittersweet. "I'm sorry," he whispers to her. "You deserve better than this. Than me..."

Perhaps she does. Perhaps she deserves more than a man who was still her brother a fortnight ago, but she hasn't thought of him like that for a while now. She missed him terribly while he was away and once she'd laid eyes on him when he returned, it only took a couple of moments to realize why the news of his marriage had hurt her so much.

Perhaps she deserves more than a man who loves another woman, but it's him she wants, so she'll take whatever part of him she can have. She's grown used to pretending, how hard can it be?

Despite the cold hard winds, his lips are warm and soft on hers when they seal their vows with a kiss. She keeps her eyes closed and it almost feels real.

***

It's a small wedding feast, but Jon still wishes he could drink himself into oblivion. He can't forget himself however, not with these two queens -both his wives now- sitting by his side. Neither of them can ever know the truth. 

He can't look at Daenerys the way she wants him to with Sansa sitting so close to him. He can't look at Sansa without fear of betraying his true feelings. So he keeps his eyes on his tankard of ale, waiting for this ordeal to be over.

He ignores the man who shouts that he has no right to be brooding when he's the lucky bastard who has the two most beautiful women in the Seven Kingdoms all to himself. He almost doesn’t hear the answering cry that he must be impatient to get on with the consummation.

It's when this comment incites the crowd to call for the bedding that he realizes he's the most sober person in the Great Hall. If they weren't this far into their cups, they wouldn't be so eager to have him bed a woman he's called sister his entire life. 

Sansa's shoulders have gone rigid and her knuckles are white against the cup she's clutching tightly. He chances a glance at Daenerys, but she's talking animatedly with Lord Tyrion, pretending she hasn't noticed.

When he is pushed through the door of her chambers, Sansa is already waiting for him, only clad in her thin shift. In the soft glow of the candles and the fire he can see all of her curves and even the pink of her nipples through the flimsy fabric.

Her eyes travel over his naked chest, but she quickly averts them. She reaches for the hem of her shift and he moves forward without thinking.

He wraps his hands around her wrists, stopping her in her tracks.

She meets his eyes, her own blue ones filled with uncertainty. 

He swallows the lump in his throat. "We don't have to do this."

"Yes, we do." There's defiance in her eyes now.

How can he go on with this without giving away that this moment has filled his dreams ever since the day he was declared King in the North?

He never imagined it would happen. They'd marry to mend what was broken. He'd go off to fight beyond the Wall, most likely never return and Sansa would be free to marry whoever she liked.

He needs to remind himself it's not real. She's only doing this out of a sense of duty. Can he even pretend that's all this is to him as well?

Perhaps he can. Perhaps it will be enough. So he nods. "Shall I help you get ready?"

Confusion is written all over her face and there's a brief flash of panic. "Ready?"

He releases a wrist to rub the back of his neck. "Err... You know, wet, so we can..."

"Oh." The blush creeping up her face makes her look even more lovely. "Perhaps you could kiss me again?" she asks in a small voice.

He shouldn't agree to such torture, but he's a weak fool who will take whatever he can get, so he nods again.

 

Chapter Text

Jon leaves a sennight after the wedding and it takes almost twice as long after for her moonblood to come. She allows herself a couple of tears over it. A son is the only thing she can give him that the Dragon Queen can't and she hoped his seed had taken root on their wedding night.

It was the only time Jon bedded her. He was gentle and careful with her, it didn't even hurt, but he left almost as soon as he spilled inside her, pressing a quick peck to her temple as he bid her goodnight.

Now he's off fighting a war and there's no guarantee he'll come back. She can't be sure he'll ever visit her chambers again, even if he returns, reluctant as he was to consummate the marriage the first time. Perhaps he'll never love her the way she loves him, but every man wants a son, and if she can give him one, there might still be a chance he'll come to return her affections.

Her parents didn't love each other when they were wed, she's even heard rumours that Father loved another woman as well, even if it was never true that he fathered a bastard on her. Their love grew as they built their home and family together. Perhaps it can be like that for Jon and her, too.

***

Many moons into the war, she decides to travel along with a supply train she's sending to the army camp. There's no need for her to go in person, but she wants to show her face, remind the lords and the smallfolk alike who's feeding and clothing them. Deep down she rejoices at the prospect of seeing Jon again, but she pushes that thought down.

She arrives at the camp at the edge of the Wolfswood after an arduous journey, the last part of which she had to make in a snow storm. The men look ragged and tired and she realizes they must have fought a battle recently. She couldn't have timed her arrival any better.

She immediately sets to handing out bread and orders a keg of ale to be brought. It's mere moments before she sees a familiar figure striding towards her and her heart skips a beat. 

Jon's still wiping the worst of the grime from his face when he reaches her and he lets his eyes wander from her to the wagons and horses behind her as he purses his lips.

Suddenly his hand is on her elbow and the other on the small of her back and he's leading her back to the trees, walking so fast he's almost making her stumble. When they've come far enough for the air around them to have become eerily silent and noticably warmer, he turns her around. She needs to blink to let her eyes adjust to the dark. 

"What are you doing here?" he grits out through clenched teeth.

She looks at him, truly looks at him for the first time since she arrived. His face looks a little sharper under his wild beard, dark circles under his eyes and a hollowness to his cheeks that weren't there on the day he left Winterfell. His hair is matted and adorned with a layer of hoarfrost that's slowly melting, one drop starting to run down his temple and cheek, drawing a pale trail down his face.

She meets his eyes, which are dark and gleaming. He doesn't give her a chance to answer. "Do you have any idea how close the wights came to the camp? We just barely fought them back!"

He's in her face, almost shouting, but she doesn't flinch. She's never been afraid when they argue, she's always felt safe with him.

"We're all in danger, all the time, Jon," she reminds him calmly.

"Aye, but I left you in the safest place possible. What were you thinking?" He's so close she can feel his breath washing over her face.

"The armies needed more food and supplies," she explains slowly, annoyance still seeping into her voice and she takes a step that brings them even closer together. "As Lady of Winterfell that's my responsibility. I'm fighting this war as much as you are, and unlike you, I'm actually thinking about after as well."

"You're fighting," he repeats, retreating to look at her, his eyes trailing up and down her body, stroking his beard with his thumb and forefinger. She's wearing one of his old leather jerkins over her dress, which she's adjusted to fit her own body. She's added shoulder pads and a belt with a fierce direwolf pin.

He gestures at her torso. "Do you think this is some game?"

She purses her lips, nostrils flaring, and ignores the pang to her heart. "Despite what you think, I'm not a silly little girl anymore."

He pinches the bridge of his nose and holds his hand up in a gesture that tells her to wait, perhaps for him to collect his thoughts or to put them into words. "I know you're not a little girl anymore, Sansa," he finally says, his voice low and rough as he moves closer again, and she becomes aware that her back is almost flush to the trunk of a tree.

"It's not just the dead... These men haven't seen a woman in moons, they're fresh out of battle."

She blinks before she realizes what he's concerned about. Cersei once told her something like this, many years ago, during the Battle of the Blackwater. She reminds him that there are women fighting as well.

"Aye," he chuckles, "but at this point it's become hard to tell the women from the men. But you..." His eyes trail down her body again and he licks his lips.

She remembers the Lannister woman's words more clearly now. "When a man's blood is up, anything with tits looks good."

It's his turn to blink at her and his lips part in surprise. There's a small quirk to his mouth and she's sure he's about to comment on her words, but he thinks better of it.

She bites her lip as she waits for him to say something. His eyes have grown even darker and it dawns on her that he's one of the men she needs protecting from, but it doesn't scare her, it only makes her rub her thighs together, discovering that, as usual, fighting with him has left her slightly damp between her legs.

"Those women out there are able to protect themselves," he finally says.

"And I am not?" she asks as coldly as she can manage, tilting her chin up.

"Don't- don't do that," he rasps, but his voice breaks on the last word and it comes out like a yelp. He lifts a clenched fist which collides with the trunk behind her and suddenly his mouth is on hers, bruising her lips. She finds herself responding to his kiss, even as her lips part in surprise.

His other arm is wrapped around her waist, pulling her flush against him as he slides his tongue into her mouth. He didn't kiss her like this on their wedding night. Her own gloved fingers start clawing at his shoulder and at the hair at the nape of his neck.

He cups the back of her neck and leaves her mouth to trail kisses down her jaw, as he presses himself as close as possible, hips rocking into hers.

"Tell me to stop," he pants into her ear.

A precious thing like you will look very, very good, Cersei's voice whispers in the back of her mind and it sounds like a warning to heed Jon's words. A slice of cake just waiting to be eaten. 

She doesn't tell him to stop. She doesn't allow herself to think how much it will hurt tomorrow. The only sound that escapes her mouth is a low moan as his teeth graze her earlobe.

He pulls her hands down to hold her skirts he's started bunching up. She can feel her smallclothes sag as he unties the laces and suddenly his bare hand slides under the fabric to cup her sex. His fingers are warm, but they might as well be freezing for how cold they feel against her scalding hot core.

He sucks at her neck, beard scraping her skin, and his fingers slide between her folds. A deep groan sends a shuddering hot breath into the shell of her ear. "Gods, you're wet."

She can tell by the sound of his fingers easily gliding back and forth. She's aching too, and without thinking she bucks her hips against his hand. If she wasn't so desperate for him, she'd push him away, appalled by her own reaction. He doesn't mind right now, but tomorrow he'll certainly be mortified when he remembers how wanton his lady wife is.

His mouth finds his way back to hers and she kisses him eagerly, earning her a growl. "Jon," she whimpers, "please."

He pulls back to look at her with blazing eyes and she whines at the loss of contact. She's not sure what he sees in her eyes, but he pulls one leg up and over his hip and she can feel his manhood prodding her folds, as he pushes her smallclothes aside.

"Please," she repeats, and he pushes into her in one smooth thrust.

***

He finds his release quickly, with her forehead resting against his, her heaving breath dampening his face. Her arms are wrapped around his neck and her legs locked around his waist, his gloved hand braced against the tree trunk and his bare one on her lower back.

He nips at her chin as he rocks into her once, twice more to draw out his pleasure before burying his face in her neck. For a while his heart is pounding so wildly it drowns out everything else.

But as he's coming down, realization starts dawning on him. He gulps, breath hitching as he tries to swallow the lump in his throat. "Did I hurt you?" he croaks against her skin.

"No," she answers softly and the selfish part of his mind tells him it sounds like a contented hum, but it's overwhelmed by the panic flooding his body and he finds himself unable to meet her eyes to see if she's telling the truth.

He slips out of her and gently puts her down, tucking himself back into his breeches. A dreadful cold settles in his stomach. "Sansa," he starts, averting his eyes. "I- I don't know- I shouldn't have-"

He hears her sucking in a breath, but he cuts her off. He doesn't deserve her reassurances or her forgiveness. He still can't meet her eyes. "I'm sorry. Please, go home."

Be safe, he adds mentally, please, forgive me, as he hears her rushing away from him.

***

It takes two moons of being home again for her to realize her moonblood still hasn't come. She waits another fortnight before sending a rider with a message to Jon. She only tells him that he needs to survive and come home to meet his son.

It appears she's still a stupid girl with stupid dreams, because she still hasn't lost hope. 

And if all else fails, she'll still have Cersei's last piece of advice. Love your children. In this a woman has no choice.

Chapter Text

It nearly takes another six moons after Jon receives Sansa's message for the war to end and finally, after fifteen or sixteen moons of fighting in the cold - he's not even sure anymore - he comes home to Winterfell. She's not there in the courtyard to greet him when he arrives. Instead it's Bran waiting for them.

"She's been in her chambers for over a sennight," he says before Jon can ask. "The birth was difficult."

"What of the babe?" Daenerys demands.

Bran slowly turns to her. "A healthy and sturdy boy."

I have a son. He needs to see her first. He stalks off to the Great Keep, Daenerys on his heels. He killed his own mother coming into the world, he couldn't bear it if- His thoughts are cut off by Daenerys' voice.

"Are you certain the child is yours?"

Her question angers him, but it also feeds the seed of doubt that's lain dormant deep inside of him ever since her received the news. The timing fits though, and he can't imagine Sansa betraying him like that, even if she holds no love for him. 

He bursts through her chamber doors, startling Sam, Gilly and the maids, who quickly retreat. He falls to his knees beside the bed. Her blue eyes are huge in her pale, gaunt face and her curls fall limply to her shoulders, but he sighs in relief at the tired smile she offers him. 

His eyes drop to the bundle in her arms and if he ever had any doubts, they're long gone. His son is wrapped in soft grey swaddling clothes, but thick black hair peeks out from under them, framing his little face, which already looks so much like his own, except for his eyes, which are entirely Sansa's. There's a lump in his throat he's unable to swallow and it quickly grows large enough to fill his entire chest.

"Well, he does look like you," Daenerys observes from behind him, almost sounding disappointed. He purses his lips and a small crease appears between Sansa's eyebrows. He didn't realize she followed him into the room.

She continues: "He doesn't have the Valyrian look, but at least we can give him a Targaryen name. Aegon's traditional, but perhaps you prefer Rhaegar?"

He doesn't miss the slight tremor of Sansa's lip, which makes him clench his teeth, but her eyes, which were soft just moments ago as she gazed down at their babe have grown hard.

"Dany," he says firmly, trying to keep his voice steady. "Could you give us a moment?"

She hesitates, before turning around and walking out of the room. When the door closes, he whispers: "I should have been here."

Sansa rolls her eyes. "The birthing chamber is no place for a man." 

He smiles down at the babe in Sansa's arms. "Hey, Robb."

"Who told you?" she asks indignantly. "I made it very clear to Arya and Bran that I wanted to tell you myself!"

He blinks at her, not understanding. "No one's told me anything," he starts, softly adding: "I- I've always dreamt of a son named Robb."

Her lips pop into an adorable "Oh" and it takes all of his strength not to lean in and kiss her. Instead he takes her hand and asks: "How are you?"

She offers him another strained smile. "I'm fine. Food has been scarce and I lost a lot of blood, is all. I didn't have enough milk at first, but Gilly had plenty for two." She squeezes his hand, as if she's trying to reassure him.

"But you'll be alright?" he asks, voice coming out rough and hoarse.

She frowns at him. "Of course, I'm stronger than I look, Jon," she sighs. "Would you like to hold him?"

He panicks. I'll drop him, or break him. I'm filthy. "I should probably have a bath first."

She tries to hide a giggle. "You should."

***

Daenerys leaves soon after naming Robb, whom she insists on calling Aegon, her heir. Somehow Jon convinces her to let him stay in Winterfell with his family while she heads south to finally take the Iron Throne from Cersei.

Most of Sansa's time goes to taking care of Robb, but more often than not, she finds Jon in the nursery both morning and evening. On the fifth morning, she enters the room to Jon finally holding his son in his arms. She leans against the doorframe, her heart swelling at the sight in front of her.

He glances up at her, his face still wearing the most tender expression she's ever seen and it makes her happy and sad at the same time.

If nothing else, she's glad to have him there to assist her with all her other duties, for which she can hardly find the time with a babe at her breast. She's exhausted most of the time, but with all of her family safe back home in Winterfell and the threat of the White Walkers removed, she's almost lulled into a sense of bliss.

A couple of days before Robb turns six moons old, Jon joins her in her solar for supper. They often eat together, discussing all sorts of matters concerning the keep and the North. Sometimes Bran and Arya are there too, but tonight it's just the two of them.

Jon eats little, clenching and unclenching his fist on the table, a perpetual scowl etched on his face, until he finally pulls a scroll from his doublet and puts it on the table.

Sansa looks at it and then back at his face. "Daenerys has summoned me to attend her coronation."

She wonders at his reluctance and at the way he almost spits out the word 'summoned'. Fear clutches her heart. "It's still the dead of winter. Robb's too young to travel."

"I know," he sighs. "Besides, you've told me on more than one occasion you'll never set foot in the capital again."

His comment doesn't make any sense, so she shakes it off. He'll miss Winterfell and Robb, but surely he'll be happy to be reunited with his Dragon Queen.

"Perhaps Arya can come with you," she suggests, taking his hand. She doesn't like the idea of two Starks leaving Winterfell at all, but sending a lone wolf south would be even worse.

He offers her a half-smile. "Perhaps."

***

In the end, it's Arya herself who decides to accompany him south. On the journey to King's Landing he often finds her staring at him with a curious expression on her face. A sennight before they arrive in the capital he finally snaps. "What?" he asks her.

She just shakes her head and informs him that he's a buggering idiot.

Daenerys' coronation is a grand affair. Exuberant and decadent, Jon muses, sipping from his cup of fancy wine as he sweats through the red and black silk Dany demanded him to wear for the occasion.

The silver circlet resting on his curls is modest compared to the heavy crown of three golden dragons coiled around the Queen's temples, but he still wishes he could wrench it off and toss it in some corner. Perhaps he could deposit it in one of the man-sized Essosi vases that are lining the Throne Room.

All of Daenerys' guests seem to be interested in talking to him, most of them regaling him with some version or other of the tale of the secret Northern prince and he finds himself denying some of the wilder speculations made by these Southroners.

In the days after, it becomes even worse. They all seem eager to bring all sorts of matters to his attention. He's quick to point out that he's unfamiliar with the affairs of the South.

"A humble king!" some Reach lord commends him.

"Surely His Grace merely needs some time to get acquainted with these matters," a Westerman remarks.

A ruddy-faced Stormlander corners him on his way to the training yard. He drones on about some tax issue, only giving Jon a chance to nod and hum at the appropriate times.

When he can finally cut in, he says: "I'll bring your concern to Queen Daenerys' attention. I'm sure you'll come to an agreement during court tomorrow."

The man gapes at him and emits a booming laugh. "But Your Grace," he exclaims in bewilderment. "You are the King, are you not?"

"I'm Prince Consort," he points out. "If you'll excuse me now, My Lord."

He's been in the capital for close to a moon when Daenerys sends him a perfumed message to invite him to a private supper in her chambers. He crumples it and flicks it into the fire.

He can't dishonour the mother of his child, by sharing another woman's bed, not even if that woman happens to be his other wife. He dreams of Sansa almost nightly, often waking up hard and aching, and as time passes on, he finds it harder to refrain from taking himself in hand when he does.

Three more moons pass with the Southron lords trying to make him their King and Daenerys alternately raging about their lack of respect and trying to seduce him.

Arya's company is of great comfort to him, even if neither of them is inclined to really talk about what's going on. It's enough that he can clear his head sparring with her or escape from the viper's nest that is King's Landing when they go riding together.

Sansa writes him regularly, informing him about affairs of state and asking his advice on certain matters. She also tells him about Robb and he rereads those parts again and again, smiling at the things she describes so vividly. He finds himself brushing his fingers over her letters, imagining how her hand has moved over the paper, forming the words.

Her latest letter is no different, except there's an additional message scribbled at the bottom, added as if it's an afterthought.

Jon, I would like to have another child.

Chapter Text

He finds her in the Godswood, Robb on her hip and Ghost by her side. With her fiery hair and pale skin, clad in soft greys, she looks like she belongs here as much as the weirwood tree or his direwolf. She turns at the sound of his footsteps and offers him a cautious smile. He closes the distance between them and drinks them in.

Robb no longer looks like a babe, his face has grown longer, his hair curlier and more unruly and he imagines Sansa pursing her lips to hold in a curse when she tries to tame it with a brush. Her face is fuller and has better colour than the last time he saw her, even if there are still dark circles under her eyes which he's tempted to try and brush away with his thumb.

He extends his arms to Robb, but he flinches and hides his face in Sansa's hair. "He doesn't know me," he croaks out, hands dropping to his sides.

Sansa meets his eyes, face unreadable. "You missed his first nameday," she states flatly.

He swallows. "I'm here now."

She nods, lifting Robb from her hip and kneeling to put him down next to Ghost, who promptly slumps to his side to let the boy tangle his tiny gloved hands in his fur. "Woof!" he tells the wolf.

Sansa remains hunched down next to them, her long hair falling like a curtain between them, hiding her face. He wants to reach out and tuck it behind her ear so he can see her slightly flushed cheeks again.

When she rises again, she's clasping her elbows. Her shoulders rise and fall before she asks: "Will you visit my chambers tonight?" Her face has turned a darker shade of red and her eyes flicker nervously from her feet to the trees behind him.

"Sansa, are you certain about this?" he asks tentatively. "It's so soon... Are you well enough to...?"

She glances up at him, straightening her shoulders and baring her long white throat as she tilts her chin in that irresistible way. "Winterfell needs an heir as well, Jon."

Aye, and you're always ready to do your duty.

***

Sansa's heart is in her throat as she sits in front of her mirror brushing her hair that night. Her insides are twisting into endless knots and her bottom lip is red and swollen from biting it too much. Her eyes are too bright in her reflection, her cheeks too pink, giving her a feverish look. 

Don't be such a silly goose, she tells herself, the voice in her head stern and steady. He's your husband, you've made a child together.

He enters after a soft knock. She rises to greet him with a smile, of half a mind to offer him a cup of wine or ale as she sees him standing awkwardly in the middle of the room, but she finds herself unable to move. Her fingers play nervously with the sash of her bedrobe. She decided to forego wearing a night rail, but she's doubting that choice now. 

On their wedding night she kept her shift on and on the day they made Robb she was fully clothed. He's never seen her naked before, so he doesn't know that her breasts hang a little heavier or that there are some faint silver lines on her belly, but she does and it's almost enough for her to lose her courage, but she pulls at the sash before she can change her mind and lets her robe fall to the floor.

Jon's lips part and his throat bobs as his eyes grow wider and darker. He closes the distance between them and reaches out to gently cup a breast, eyes roaming over her naked form. She licks her lips as desire pools low in her belly and then his hand is on her waist, pulling her closer and his lips are on her collarbone and she allows herself to melt under his attentions.

***

He comes to her chambers every other night. Part of her rejoices at his eagerness, but a malicious voice in the back of her mind whispers he's just trying to get her with child as soon as possible so he can cease his visits.

He's always as gentle as he was on their wedding night, but she often finds her mind drifting back to that day in the Wolfswood. The thought of him claiming her the way he did that day never fails to leave her wet and aching. More than once she's thought of grabbing him by the hair and kissing him as they walk in the Godswood, but she can't do that, it wouldn't be proper.

One night she finds herself brave enough to meet his eyes as he's lying on top of her, moving inside her and tell him: "I'm not made of glass, Jon. I wouldn't mind if you were a bit more... rough," she concludes.

He gulps and leans down to nip at her lips before moving his mouth to her neck to suck and bite at the soft flesh. He lifts her legs over his shoulders and starts pounding into her harder and faster than before. 

The new angle and rhythm have her moaning like a whore, but there's no space in her mind or body for shame, only pleasure.

When he's spilled himself inside her, he flops onto his back and she quickly rolls with him, pretending to fall asleep on his chest.

Long after his jagged breathing has returned to normal and she can no longer hear the wild pounding of his heart, his soft snores start filling the room. She allows herself a smile as she nuzzles her face into his skin before closing her eyes again.

***

She's inspecting stores in the kitchen when she accidentally overhears two scullions who are scrubbing kettles discussing the most scandalous acts she's ever heard of. 

"She was ridin' 'im like a horse," the buxom blonde giggles. 

The maester asks her a question then and she misses part of the conversation, but the next thing she hears is the more slender black-haired girl express worry over getting with child.

"There are ways to avoid that," the blonde answers.

"Like moon tea?" the other girl asks.

"Aye," she answers, "but there are other ways to please a man."

"I won't let 'im bugger me!" the dark-haired girl whispers and Sansa's cheeks flush with heat.

"'Ave ye never sucked a man's cock before, Bryony?"

The two girls erupt into a fit of giggles and Sansa sinks down behind a sack of oats, clasping a hand over her mouth to stifle a gasp.

Chapter Text

Jon's days in Winterfell are quite similar to those right after he was crowned King in the North. He and Sansa share the responsibility of ruling the North, though they're less focused on the military side and Sansa is taking on the bulk of the tasks now, as she's been doing since he left for Dragonstone three years ago.

It leaves him with more free time he can spend with Robb, who's quickly grown used to having him around. He's been trying to teach him to say papa, but the only words coming out of his mouth for now, apart from some unintelligible gibberish, are "woof" and "whost". 

He still worries. There are moments he's afraid to look up at the sky and sometimes he veers up in his bed in the middle of the night after another dream in which Winterfell is consumed by dragon fire. The nightmare don't come as often anymore now he shares Sansa's bed at night though.

He's enjoying those nights while they last, but the best part is that he believes Sansa is enjoying them as well. The first morning he woke up in her bed, she smiled up at him and said: "You can stay more often if you like."

At first he was reluctant to take her up on her offer, not wanting to impose on the little time she can spend on her own. But now sleeping next to her and waking up with her in his arms have become the best parts of his day.

One night he's kissing her, pressed against her side, teasing her wet folds with his fingers, and he's already painfully hard. 

Suddenly she surprises him by pushing him onto his back and straddling his hips. She braces one hand on his chest, biting her lip as she throws a shy glance at his face. With her other hand she reaches between her legs to guide him inside her.

She starts out slow, trying different angles and rhythms. He contents himself with watching her ride him, tits bouncing and flushed face angled up, one hand still planted on his chest. 

He takes her other hand, lacing their fingers together as her movements become more urgent and the most delicious sounds start falling from her lips. 

He can tell that she's close and he already knows he'll follow soon after. When she cries out as she clenches around him, squeezing his fingers, he grabs her hip, thrusting up wildly until his release takes him.

She slumps forward and he holds her to him, stroking her back with his knuckles. "Did you like that?" he murmurs into her ear.

She nods against his neck, still a little breathless. "Did you?"

Fuck! You have no idea! He kisses the shell of her ear. "Aye."

***

Sansa's discovered that there are advantages to having Jon in her bed all night. First of all, she sleeps better with him there and secondly, she's noticed that his appetite for her is more potent in the morning. When she wakes up with him pressed against her back, he'll kiss her neck and shoulders, and caress every inch of skin his hand can reach, until she's slick enough for him to slip inside her.

Once she woke up spooning him, her hand draped carelessly over his lower stomach and she couldn't resist the wicked urge to lower it, finding him already half-hard. When she started stroking him, he twisted onto his back, making her shriek as he pulled her on top of him.

The unfortunate side-effect of their frequent couplings is that she's already with child. She knew the first time she missed her moon blood, but she told herself there was no way to be certain and that it was too early to tell if it would last. She's been sick more often than she was with Robb, but it usually happens in the afternoon, so Jon hasn't noticed yet.

She's aware she should tell him, but she doesn't want their nights together to end. It's not fair to either of them. She's deceiving him and she's only setting herself up for disappointment when he inevitably finds out, but she's not ready yet to destroy the illusion of a happy marriage that only exists in the dream world she's created.

It's after midday, so she's retreated to her solar. She starts her afternoon reading some letters, deliberating whether she should mend Jon's tunic now or if she'll keep that for tonight, when he'll be able to see her doing so and smile at her in gratitude. She decides to wait, so she'll have some more time to see Robb as well.

Suddenly Arya bursts into the room, startling her maids. She comes to a halt and blinks, realizing her mistake and makes a clumsy attempt at a curtsy. 

Sansa narrows her eyes. "What have you done?"

"Nothing!" her sister cries out. "I need to talk to you! Alone!"

She shakes her head. "Very well then." She dismisses her maids and puts Lord Manderly's letter aside.

Arya stands in the middle of the room, chewing her lip, before taking a deep breath and announcing: "Jon is in love with you."

Sansa averts her eyes. "Don't say that."

"It's true!"

She leaps to her feet. "Are you mocking me? Is this some cruel game of yours?"

Arya blinks, eyes wide and innocent. "Of course not! I know it's none of my concern-"

"No, it's not."

"But the two of you are just so stupid!" she continues, undeterred by Sansa's interruption. "I know you think he loves Daenerys, but if there ever was anything between the two of them, it ended a long time ago."

She can feel it ignite deep inside of her, that spark of hope, threatening to warm her body with joy all the way down to her toes. She crushes it down before it has a chance to do so and her stomach churns. She bolts across the room, aiming for the chamber pot she keeps hidden in a corner.

When she's done retching her guts out, Arya's staring at her, mouth hanging open.

"Please, don't tell him," she whispers hoarsely.

***

They're all supposed to have supper in the Great Hall tonight, but Sansa isn't there. Jon excuses himself as quickly as possible and runs up the stairs to her chambers. It wouldn't be the first time she forgot to eat because she was too busy with one of her many duties, but she would never skip supper if her presence among their bannermen was expected.

When he turns around the corner to the family quarters, he slows down, afraid to make a fool out of himself if he arrives at her door out of breath. He knocks, but she doesn't answer. He tries again and her muffled voice drifts through the wood. "Jon?"

"Sansa?"

"I'm not feeling well. I'd like to be alone tonight, if you don't mind."

His stomach sinks. "Of course," he says, wanting nothing more than to run through that door and see her face. "Is there anything I can get you?"

He counts three heartbeats before her answer comes. "No, I just need to rest, is all."

***

Jon spends the night in Robb's nursery, but Sansa's not there when they wake up. Later that morning Lord Glover notifies him he was supposed to meet Sansa in the Glass Gardens, but that she never turned up. He apologizes on her behalf and spends half an hour pacing the courtyard before heading for her chambers again.

She's sitting on the other side of the room, staring out the window. He clears his throat. "You forgot your meeting with Lord Glover."

She looks up at him with puffy and red-rimmed eyes. He approaches her, coming to a halt three feet away from her and asks: "What's wrong? Are you ill?"

"No," she murmurs, staring at her hands, which are lying in her lap, palms up. "I'm with child."

He sinks down onto the chair closest to her, his joy short-lived when he sees the expression on her face. "Sansa, that's wonderful news. That's what you wanted, isn't it?"

"No," she bawls. "I mean, it is, but... Now you'll leave me again and go back to Daenerys!"

He rises, closing the short distance between them to kneel and take her hand. "Sansa, I'm never leaving my family again."

She stares at him, doubt still clear in her eyes.

"Besides," he continues, remembering the last scolding Arya gave him for keeping this from her. "Daenerys and I didn't part on good terms. She's come to resent me and... I don't think she wants to see me again."

"What?" she demands, rising and retracting her hand. "Are you telling me the North is in danger and we haven't prepared for any possible threats?"

He purses his lips, following her. "I've taken some measures."

"Behind my back!" she exclaims, turning away from him.

He puts his hand on her elbow and murmurs: "I didn't want to add to your burdens."

She crosses her arms in front of her chest, rolling her eyes. "How many times do I have to tell you to stop protecting me?"

He offers her a half-smile, rubbing her arm. "At least once more."

"I'm sorry," she mutters eventually, stepping away from his touch.

He raises an eyebrow, dropping his hand.

"That Daenerys doesn't want to see you anymore," she clarifies.

Oh. He flexes his hand. "Sansa." His throat goes dry. "I never loved Daenerys."

Her eyes are shielded with suspicion. "Then why did you marry her?"

"We needed her," he reminds her.

She narrows her eyes. "There were rumours. That you bedded her. Before..."

He nods, there's no use in lying to her. "I was lonely. And I wanted to forget. I was so ashamed..."

"Of what?"

He closes his eyes. Don't be a craven, Snow. "Of my feelings for you." He opens his eyes again. "I've been in love with you since the day I almost died again fighting the Bolton bastard." He can't stop himself anymore now, the words keep pouring out of his mouth. "I was ready to give up, to let the darkness take me again, but my heart was pounding so hard, and... It was almost as if it was beating to the sound of your name and I knew I had to keep going."

Her eyes are filled with tears and her arms have dropped to her sides. 

He swallows. "Have I frightened you?"

She shakes her head, wiping her eyes. "Arya was right. We're so stupid. I love you, Jon. I didn't realize until you came back from Dragonstone, but..." She closes the distance between them, fisting her hands into his jerkin, and captures his lips in a kiss. All he can do is kiss her back and pull her closer. 

***

She's kissing Jon. She loves him, and he loves her, and she's kissing him and it's the best feeling in the world. When they part for breath, her cheeks turn scarlet as she asks: "So you'll still come to my chambers tonight?"

His lips curl into a smirk. "Perhaps I don't want to wait until tonight. I love you and I want you right now."

She licks her lips before she launches herself at him again. They kiss and embrace, mouths and hands striving to caress as they divest each other of their clothing.

His eyes grow large as she kneels in front of him, and when she takes him into her mouth, he moans her name. Before long, he's pulling her up and into his arms, nearly throwing her onto the table and shouldering her legs apart.

"I've dreamt about this," he groans before he starts lapping at her folds. His name keeps falling from her lips like a prayer, until she shudders and cries out.

He rises, guiding himself inside her before pulling her up so he can hold her and kiss her as he takes her hard and fast.

When he's finished, he gathers her in his arms and carries her to the bedroom. He gently puts her down on the bed to make love to her more slowly and tenderly this time.

"I'm never leaving you again," he reminds her as he stretches her open for the second time before midday. "And I'll put a dozen more babes in you, if you want. We're not coming out of this bedroom for the next couple of years."

She loves him, and he loves her, and it's better than she could have imagined.