There was a boy in the garden, with dark hair and tender hands, but someone came and drew the curtains shut and Robb was not to speak of him.
It was not yet dawn, but nearly so and night was slipping slowly from the roof of the world like a lady’s starry garment. The witching hour.
In this blue and umber landscape, Robb Stark wandered from his bed. It seemed the wind alone drove his feet up the hill and through the tall grass, he himself hardly seeing, the two blue orbs of his eyes were distant and deserted islands. To any who might have glimpsed him then, it would have seemed to them as though his soul had fled and the body was merely wandering after it.
But not so to Robb, who believed - without quite comprehending - that his journey had a purpose, and though the purpose itself was unclear he was content not knowing.
All around were gentle night-time sounds, the wind, the wolves and the weird nocturnal birds, these too were music, even the long grass appeared to caress, to cajole, as though all of the Night meant to make love to him, and with its soft murmurings and intangible embraces he might have swooned upon the bosom of endless twilight, had destiny not urged him on.
He proceeded hence for many hours, and it did not seem odd to him that the sun remained unrisen, nor did the grassy planes come to an end. In fact, Robb knew that there were no such fields as these in the Northern lands (too hard, too cruel as it was), but this detail did not irritate him. All was well, all was right. Nothing mattered save forward and on.
At long last, Robb approached a figure in the grass, blocking his path.
Immediately, it seemed to him that he knew this person. Knew him, but did not know him. As the river somehow knows it flows home to the sea.
There was a boy sitting in the grass with dark hair and tender hands, yet not a boy, a man, lithe as a sword was he and upon his dusky head, a crown of iron, where fingernail sized drops of blood trembled at each sharp point, like a dozen tiny rubies. He looked up this boy King, mouth parting, but no words need spoken, they were clear enough.
Speak my name.
Robb did, dumbfounded with desire.
And Renly – that was his name – lay back and held out his hands.
If the stars had eyes, they watched Robb sink fast into his arms, sinking as if to drown, watched Renly receive him upon the grass, which was softer than he remembered and darker too, like mermaids’ hair or even a carpet of that blue-blackness which slipped now from the sky.
On this somber bedding, he was urged onto bent hands and knees, Renly beneath him, his thigh moving between Robb’s legs, forcing his hips to rock, to ride. Their mouths were two stars colliding, their sighs deafened the wind while above and beyond, the dragoness; Dawn mounted the edge of the earth with amorous talons, lighting the horizon like a pearl.
Rougher and more frenzied their rhythm, Renly’s hands alone controlled the tide, and these slipped to the hilt of his lover’s sword, making him cry out. Deliberately he fingered the length; palming first its metal tip then working the thickness with his tender grip, just as he worked Robb’s mouth with his tongue.
Take out your sword he said without saying, love me.
At this point Robb knew that he was groaning, but this he didn’t hear, there was nothing that could distract him hence, only the dangerous rushing sound of steel as Renly dragged his blade from its scabbard, disarming him, only Renly’s mouth against his burning flesh, a mouth that melted as it murdered.
I will die from this! Robb thought madly. Yet, he could not die, instead it seemed he would straddle the precipice for an age of this suspenseful agony only to plunge and rise and plunge and rise from it again. And this he did, until there were no depths left to plumb, and the last fiery spike of pleasure thrust him toward the zenith. He felt it in the coming sunrise as Renly left steel and found yet another sword, hotter and more urgent in his hand. By then, so great was the tide, that all he could do was squeeze fast his legs around Renly’s body and rend the soft grass between his fingers while the great final waves came crashing and smashing one after the other to the shore.
Robb’s whole body seemed to stretch, to freeze, suspended on a single immutable cry of release. Then the sun burned red, yellow, white and cancelled the sky –
Upon waking, the roof of his tent blurred into focus and there was a brief terrifying moment of confusion as Robb unremembered his surroundings…but they came back again, like the dust settling after a storm.
Getting up slowly in bed, he was aware of a distinct dampness in his sleeping garments and between the blankets. And these he put away from him without ceremony.
It was not yet dawn, but nearly so, and the air was sharp and brisk outside his tent. Theon was dozing in an upright position just outside the door, hand resting at the hilt of his sword, which he often did at night despite Robb’s protests. Sensing movement, he roused all the way from his half-sleep to see Robb brush passed him into the open grass.
“He flees King’s Landing…” said Robb, gazing up into the starless sky.
“Who does?” croaked Theon.
Robb didn't seem to hear him. He was watching the empty sky, empty save for a single black bird, which dove suddenly out of sight.
A disturbed expression crossed his face, and - himself not quite fathoming where the words came from, but somehow sure of their truth - said, “…he won’t go far.”