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Ten Songs

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1) REM - Nightswimming

deserves a quiet night

There's a high buzz starting in Jon's ears by the time he finds Robb; the sound rises above the muted crash of their movements under the water, and of his heart, still pounding crazily still riding the rush of their plunge into the pool. Jon pulls toward him, feels Robb's fingers seeking him out too, grasping urgent and careless. Robb's arm around his waist draws them together chest to chest when they surface, laughing and gasping. The moonlight paints the water streaming down over Robb a cold silver but up close there's a scarlet flush in his cheeks, and then Robb's mouth is hotter than the water, and he's falling on him like Jon's the air he needed.

 

2) Echo & The Bunnymen - Silver

just look at you, with burning lips

Robb's heart is racing, and he can almost feel Jon's lips ghosting over the pulse in his neck, the teasing wet flick of his tongue. He can see Jon's mouth swollen with kisses, glistening in the dim candlelight of his room; remembers the first awkward, hesitant time and how the unexpected softness made him weak with wanting; imagines Jon's damp breaths coming quickly against the sensitive skin of his thighs, making Robb shake and gasp and beg for what he does best with those perfect lips -

"Robb, what do you think?"

"What?"

Sansa sighs, rolling her eyes. "Never mind."

When Robb looks back to the lower table again Jon catches him. He puts down a leg of honeyed chicken and casually brings his hand up to his mouth, darting his tongue slowly over sticky fingers, pursing his lips around them. Robb swallows hard, has to look away. He knows Jon knows exactly what he's doing.

 

3) Elvis Costello - (What's So Funny 'Bout) Peace, Love And Understanding

is all hope lost? is there only pain and hatred and misery?

"Jon," Robb says, so quietly Jon's not sure he heard it for a moment. "We can't ... trade him ... for them."

"I know," Jon replies.

Memories rush in to fill the silence: Arya with her hands on her hips, stern and bossy; the way Sansa laughs like a goose when something makes her forget her courtly manners; the girls bickering over breakfast; the unguarded joy on both of their faces when Jon and Robb brought the direwolves home...

Somewhere in both of their hearts is a bright, painful spark that says honour and propriety and vengeance can go hang; that would have Jon and Robb beg Tywin Lannister on their knees if it would mean they could go home with their sisters.

In the moment when that spark of hope burns hotter than ever, Jon and Robb do their best to put it out. All it can do is hurt.

 

4) The Pretenders - Talk Of The Town

who were you then? who are you now?

Jon sits on the end of his bed, the sunset sending rays of deep burnished copper across the room. He thinks of the look on Robb's face in the wolfswood, lit up in the midday sun, when Jon said the thing he wishes he hadn't. The look lasted a long time, enough to make Jon suspect Robb saw what was beneath the words. He hadn't backed away in shock; had he been thinking it over? Had that been the first time it had occurred to him?

Jon can hardly believe how those small spoken words have made the world a new, uncertain place. He's not sure if the distant, idle longing, alone, was better or worse. It's not like it gnawed at him, tormented him: there was no question of anything happening, so Jon just got on with things. Now... now, he wonders.

 

5) Iggy Pop - China Girl

i could escape this feeling

Robb slumps back against the ripped leather seats, weirdly exhausted after the short trip to the gents and back. He's feeling it now, knows he stumbled as he made his way back through the bar, dark and gloomy though it's surely only early evening ... he looks at his watch, discovers no, it's coming up to 10.

Robb looks over at Jon, and something about his brother's face is still tight and closed though his eyelids flutter drowsily. Jon looks back, manages a half smile, and he reaches across the rough wood of the table, stained with years of damp rings. Robb takes his hand and they both squeeze briefly, a little gesture of reassurance, or comfort, or something, he's not sure.

But how can it be, he thinks, how can there be reassurance, or comfort, because everything isn't alright, it won't be alright, because their father is dead and they've done nothing but throw down cheap whiskey and smoke cheap cigarettes since the wake, in these same shadows in this same bar, drowning themselves and each other in self-pity and tears and useless anger. Since the wake, their father's wake, which might have been a week ago or an hour ago for all Robb can think right now.

"Another?" Jon asks thickly, nodding at the empties, sticky amber residue drying in the bottom of too many glasses.

"Fuck it." Robb shrugs.

 

6) The Cure - Just Like Heaven

show me how you do that trick, the one that makes me scream

"Robb," Jon gasps, pulling away clumsily, and Robb can't deny he loves that Jon still blushes like a maid sometimes, after everything they've done together, even as he's sprawling naked in Robb's bed. Jon bites his lip, smiles when he stammers, "Robb, will you ... will you - do that thing?"

Robb knows exactly what he means, his cock twitching at the thought, remembering the noise Jon had made... He still has the marks in his palm from Jon's teeth, from where he'd had to shove a hand over his mouth before he woke the whole castle.

Robb can't help but grin, and in a fluid movement he flattens Jon back down on the bed, drawing a high murmur of anticipation from him. Crawling over Jon's body on his hands and knees, Robb looks down at him and says innocently, "What thing?"

Jon colours again. "You know what," he laughs, reaching for him, but Robb grabs his wrists and pushes them either side of his head.

"Oh, I know it alright," Robb breathes, "I know I'll have you scream my name before morning."

"Gods," Jon pants, squirming desperately.

"But first you have to say it for me."

 

7) The Cardigans - Feathers and Down

i wish my arms were wider, i wish that i could hide you

Jon can't remember the last time he slept. Robb's done little but, and Jon has no idea whether that's good or bad. The bleeding stopped and Jon does his best to keep the wound in Robb's shoulder clean, but he still burns with fever, groans in pain, and every day they cover less ground. He's no idea where they're running to, no idea who else is complicit in the Freys' treachery or who has forgotten their oaths now they believe the King in the North dead. Winterfell is no refuge for them now. All he can think is keep moving, because to stop would mean giving up. To close his eyes would mean giving up, because there's only him to keep watch now. He's all Robb has.

 

8) Suede - The 2 Of Us

the snow might fall and write the lines on the silent page

Snow settling in auburn hair, making dark streaks as it melts... the feel of body heat and a hint of nervous tremor when he raised his hand to push the hair off Robb's face...

Jon jabs viciously at the coals in the brazier, so close to the flames he's actually uncomfortably hot, but at least he can't see the snowfall for the little heat haze above the fire. Falling snow setting him off now. The one thing they have in abundance at Castle Black. Falling fucking snow. It's going to be one of those days.

Snow settling in dark curls, Jon's face pink with cold but his fingers warm when they brushed down his cheek ... Jon's parted lips, the cloud of his breath coming quickly when he leaned in ...

Robb shakes his head a little to try to clear it, hopes none of the men noticed him drifting away for a moment. He has no idea how he's going to get through today when something as small as the glimpse of the snowfall outside is dragging him back to Winterfell. Winterfell, before everything went to hell. When things were simpler. It's going to be one of those days.

 

9) Jeff Buckley - Lilac Wine

i feel unsteady, like my love

just tripped, that's all, onto the bed, tripped because it was dark in Jon's room and they're so tired from so many many many stairs on the way up from the feast, they were tired but they helped each other, leaned on each another. Robb's great like that. He's Jon's best friend, best best friend in all the world, and they're sort of brothers but not really, everyone's always saying so and they think he doesn't know but he does. Robb's alright about it though, because Robb's great. He's giggling like a girl, fallen down across Jon's bed, and Robb would make a pretty girl, he has pretty eyes, and when he looks at them Jon feels a bit sick but in a good way. Yes, he'd be a pretty girl but he might have to have a shave first. His beard's prickly under Jon's fingers but it's a nice sort of prickle and Jon tells him and Robb giggles again, and kisses him on the mouth and that's nice too, in a surprising sort of way, and Robb's beard is rough on his face and his mouth tastes of the wine. The wine was great, they both said so, and Robb's great, really great, so there is no way in which this is not a great idea

 

10) The Clash - Jimmy Jazz

he ain't here but he sure went past

"And you've no idea where he is?" Lady Stark asks, her eyes narrowing.

"I'm sorry, no, my lady," Jon tells her, sure she notices his heart pounding, the sheen of sweat he can feel cooling on his skin in the morning air. "He said he was going straight down to the hall." Please, gods, let me have done up my breeches right at least.

She peers around into Jon's room, and he reluctantly opens the door a little wider, thinking please no please no please no -

"Are those his boots?" Shit.

"He's wearing his best pair for the King's arrival. He left these ones there earlier." Neither of these things are lies, and they're the best Jon can do under this kind of pressure.

Lady Stark nods shortly. "He should have been downstairs first thing. There's a lot to do. If you see him, please send him right away."

"Of course, my lady."

As soon as the door clicks shut, and Jon breathes again, the heaped furs at the bottom of Jon's bed shake and fall to the ground. Robb's naked and red in the face, taking gulps of air. "Gods, it was hot under there."

Jon sags against the door. "You really need to go, you're in so much trouble."

Robb turns onto his side, grinning. "If I'm already in trouble, five minutes more won't hurt. Come back here."