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like meat loves salt

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The room Theon has been given is small and cold and windowless, low down in the keep. The air smells of salt and mould. There is no fire. His chests, all the fine clothes he packed with Robb, sit untouched at the foot of his bed. Gold, he thinks. All gold. I have no iron in me. The thought is a sharp pain, salt in a raw wound.

Shame and disappointment make a churning in his stomach, a sour taste lingering in his mouth.

Theon is so cold.

In a moment, he will rise from his bed, find a warm fur cloak that will still carry with it a scent of pine and smoke and horses, the North.

In a moment. In a moment.

The keep is quiet around him now. The room is dark despite the flaring candle. Soon Theon will rise –

He jerks awake at the sound of the opening door.

“Asha,” he says, thick-tongued and stupid. Even in the dim light is enough to catch her slow smile. His sister’s smile –

“Hello, brother,” she says. Her walk is confident, arrogant. Despite himself he can think only of that first afternoon, the feel of her under his hands. Her skin, so warm in the chill salt air.

“What are you doing here, bitch?” he spits out. Hating the weakness in his voice, hating her.

Hating the desire rising in him. Gods, God, she is his sister. His body forgets, but his mind cannot help but remember.

Gods, if only Theon could forget.

Asha strides over to stand before him, looming over him. She is staring at him, pale blue eyes in her pale face, as if she can see down to the blood of him, down to the bone.

The corner of her mouth lifts, mockingly.

Theon knows what she thinks of him now, and it burns.

And he wants –

She reaches out, touches his cheek. Her fingers are rough, calloused, stained: a man’s hands, fit for a man’s work.

He reaches up to tug her hand away, but she catches his hand with hers, tangles their fingers together. He is trapped, held tight.

His mouth parts around the shape of her name, but Theon cannot speak.

Asha.

He wants her to stop. He wants her to leave. He wants – he wants to have never come here, to have never been among the Starks, to have never been born a Greyjoy at all.

He wants, more than anything, to have never been her brother.

“What are you doing here,” he spits out finally, while Asha stares.

Her smile is changing, but still her steady gaze is fixed on his face. Theon cannot read her at all.

“Little brother, you promised me a night I would tell stories about to my grandchildren. Have you forgotten already?”

All his breath leaves him in a single explosive rush. He pulls away.

“Are you my sister, or some whore?” His voice comes out harsh and disgusted, and yet Asha’s smile does not falter.

“I know what I am. But do you? You want me. You want to fuck me, to stick your cock in your own sister. I can see it all over you.”

The crude words slip out easily from her mouth. Theon feels heat race through him, dizzying.

She takes another step forward, so close to him now that their legs are almost tangling. He can feel the warmth of her against his skin. There’s no use denying it – he’s hard now, blood rising in him, heat.

“We both want it,” she says, leaning close, a challenge. “I’m salt and I’m iron, I take what I want. What do you do?”

He can’t stand it, the way she’s looking at him. I am no coward. I’m not. And after all it’s a woman’s place, on her back. Asha ought to know her place.

He thinks, then, of the Targaryens. Thinks of the rumours about the Lannister queen and her brother.

When she kisses him, bright and bruising, Theon kisses back.

She kisses like a man, forceful and unyielding. Theon cannot believe the strength of his own desire. How much he wants her, this rough plain unnatural woman, smiling in a man’s clothing. His sister.

“Asha,” he breathes out, biting at her mouth. “You’re right. Get on your back, I want to fuck you.”

She grins at him, hands on his shoulders.

“No,” she says, and pushes him down.

He fights her, twisting in her grip. She’s only a woman, it should be easy to pin her down and get her where he wants her to be.

Theon can’t do it. No matter how he strains against her grip he cannot break it, cannot fight free of her casual hold. He’s on his back, pinned down – his sister is the stronger.

He feels – despair.

Despair, and desire.

“Keep fighting,” she murmurs. “You won’t win. You’re soft, brother. Never fought a man like this, never killed with nothing more than the strength of your hands. Not like I have.”

Asha grinds down then, the heat of her sex against his aching cock. And Theon bucks upwards, wanting more, wanting, and hating himself for it.

“Fucking bitch, let go of me,” he snarls, still fighting.

She laughs. “Why should I? I’m the stronger.” She grins down at him and grinds down again, hot even through the leather of her trousers.

Theon moans, a helpless shameful sound like a woman. He cannot fight her. Cannot even fight himself.

And above him Asha smirks, delighted. “Listen to you, little brother. You love it, don’t you?”

She’s all over him, now. Straddling him, pinning him down. She takes his wrists in one hand and with the other starts to tug at the laces of her shirt, quick and clever. Theon can only watch as the soft curves of her breasts spill free. Can only watch, helpless, desperate.

“Asha,” he moans, below her. “Let me. Let me touch.”

“Do you yield?” she asks him.

“Yes,” he lies, but she’s ready when he tries to flip her, and he cannot move her.

“Do you yield? Or do I leave?” Asha says again. Her eyes are hot and wanting, looking down at him.

In this moment, Theon would die rather than lose the chance to touch her.

“I yield,” he breathes out, eyes lowered.

She smiles.

“Take your clothes off, then,” she says, as she pulls away. Her own shirt is hanging loosely off her shoulders, and she tugs it away and moves to the laces of her trousers. Theon fumbles at his own clothes, fingers clumsy on the laces and bright buttons. He feels like a boy again, with his first woman, blind and shaky with ignorance and desire.

Asha laughs at him, already naked. She’s hard with muscle, scarred, despite her woman’s curves. Theon cannot take his eyes away.

“Pretty clothes,” she says, mocking, while Theon flushes red. “You’re so pretty, brother, pretty and soft. The Starks made a fine woman of you.”

He snarls at that, surging upwards, but she meets his movements with a kiss, holding him down. With her hard body, her warrior’s body, strength written onto her skin.

And then she reaches down and takes his cock in her hand, strokes him once while Theon moans below her. She shifts back, positioning herself over him until Theon’s cock is caught between her legs, sliding through her slick folds. He cries out at the feel of it, her wet heat against him, while above him she moans in her turn and rubs harder against him.

“Asha,” he moans, straining upwards. He is so close, so close to being inside her. Where he needs to be. “Asha, let me fuck you –”

But above him she frowns.

“No,” she says, rough and hoarse. “We do not sow. I’m no rich field ripe for the ploughing, brother. I bear no man’s child.”

Theon bites his lip, looking up at her. Looking at the places where their bodies are touching, the red stretch of her folds around his cock.

He nods, once. If this is what he can have, what she will let him have –

They move together in rhythm, bodies straining together. Theon is breathless and desperate with wanting her. His heart is pounding. In this moment he feels closer to her than he ever has to any other person.

“So pretty,” Asha says softly. She smiles at him, almost gentle, almost kind. “Would you ride on my ship with me, brother? Come with me to the wide salt sea, lie with me, sleep in my cabin by my side?”

Her eyes are so soft. Theon reaches up towards her, yearning, heart hammering in his chest with wanting her.

“Yes,” he whispers, soft as a breath between them.

She leans down for another bruising kiss. “Would you be my saltwife, little brother? I’d take you. My pretty landsman boy.”

Shame rises up in a hot tide, and Theon is drowning in it, lost.

“Yes,” he says again, words so soft in his mouth, and as heavy as stones. “Yes.”

Asha smiles, moving faster. There’s a flush growing on her cheeks now, her chest, her breasts.

“You’d let me do anything.” She looks down at him, smiling, eyes so knowing. “You’d lie like this for anyone, wouldn’t you. Did you spread your legs for the Starks, too? Your brother Robb, the bastard? Did you let them take you, like you’re letting me?”

Theon shakes below her.

“They never asked,” he whispers, words spilling out of him against his will. And then, horrified, he turns his face away from her; but it is too late, the words have been said. He is naked before her, stripped bare.

But Asha only smiles, and touches his cheek feather-light.

“Little brother,” she murmurs.

Their bodies move together, pleasure building between them, rising like the tide.

And then Asha pulls away from him again, and Theon cries out with the loss. She grabs his hand and pulls it between her legs, rubs against his fingers as he curls them against her. He can feel how close she is, how slick and soft and wet. The room smells like her now, like sex, like the sea.

She cries out when she comes, loud and unashamed. Theon feels the wetness of her against his fingers, feeling dizzy with lust. He wants – he wants

“Brother,” she whispers finally, after her trembling has slowed. She reaches down, stroking his cock until Theon is almost sobbing with it, with the rough delicious slide of her hand around his cock.

“Asha,” he moans, while she smiles above him.

“Theon,” she answers. With her free hand she reaches out and touches his face again, as if there is gentleness in her, as if she could be soft.

“Pretty Theon,” she says. “You have our mother’s smile. My little brother.”

Theon is moaning helplessly below her, close, so close.

“Sister,” he sobs again. “Please?”

“Yes,” she says. “Yes. We let the Starks have you too long, but you’re ours now. I’ll take you. You’re mine.”

Moaning, Theon spills into her hand.

Afterwards Asha stays with him, sprawled out lazily in the bed beside him with her arm slung over his chest. Theon is quiet beside her. He does not think of Robb or Ned or Jon or Winterfell.

“I’ll take you, brother,” Asha says to him again, soft and intimate into his ear. “I’m a Greyjoy, I’m cold and hard as the sea. I pay the iron price.”