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The Ice in a Dragon's Heart

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“I don’t have love here. Only fear.”

She was drowning. She could feel it. After the loss of Viserion, half her army – her people –, Jorah, Rhaegal, Missandei. The loneliness and isolation she had felt in the North, the hostility of its people, even after saving their worthless lives. Tyrion and Varys looking at her like she was already mad, like she was her father, even when she kept listening to their advices time and time again, losing more and more every time.

She was on a cliff, a step away from falling. And her only lifeline was the man in front of her. A word from him would be enough to bring her back from the edge. He was the man she loved and the only family she had left. He should be on her side, right? Even when everyone else had abandoned her, he should be the one to stand by her.

But she would be disappointed once again.

She had begged him not to say anything to his family, because she knew, unlike him, what the consequences would be. She had been in danger all her life because of who she was. She knew what it was like to be hunted just because she was a Targaryen. He didn’t understand. But she did. Why didn’t he listen to her? Was he so blinded by his duty and his love for his family that he didn’t understand what this secret would do to her, to them?

Or he simply didn’t care. Maybe the truth was that he didn’t love her. That he never did. That he used her to get her armies and dragons. That he manipulated her to save the North and his people, his family – the Starks, since he obviously didn’t consider her his family – and then tossed her aside when he had no use for her anymore.

Maybe finding out who he was was almost a relief for him, so he could have an excuse – a seemingly honorable one – to cast her aside, to end their relationship. He was too much of a Stark to continue having a relationship with someone he was related to. And who could blame him for that?

After all, the Starks had the reputation of being honorable. Where was the honor in what Lady Stark had done? Telling Tyrion the truth after swearing that she would keep quiet, knowing perfectly well what the consequences would be?

Hadn’t she warned Jon that this would happen? Was he really so naïve to not see Sansa Stark for the treasonous snake she really was? The manipulative, insidious mind behind those blue eyes of hers?

Maybe he did but he didn’t care.

Daenerys tried to suppress these thoughts. No, he did love her. He did. She had been sure of that. She had felt it, on that ship. Didn’t she?

She wasn’t sure of anything anymore.

But maybe not all was lost.

“I love you.” He said. And for a moment, everything was right in the world. But his next word destroyed that illusion, freezing her like she had been doused in icy water. “You’re my Queen.”

His Queen. She was his Queen. That was all he seemed able to say nowadays. Like his oath to her could make up for the fact that he had been completely absent since he had found out who his parents really were. Where was he when the Northerners kept grumbling under their breaths, in her earshot, that a Targaryen wasn’t welcome here, would never be welcome here, that her armies of foreigners and her beasts weren’t welcome here? Where was he when his sister openly defied her at every turn? When the rest of his family avoided her like she had something contagious? When she had to burn Viserion, after losing him for a second time? When she lost Jorah, her oldest friend and advisor? When they had left her – him included – isolated at that feast? A feast to celebrate the fact that they had won against the army of the dead, thank to her armies and dragons. Where was he when Rhaegal – the dragon he had ridden into battle and during that one time at the waterfalls – was killed? When her dear friend Missandei was killed?

Nowhere to be found. Certainly not by her side, like he promised he would be.

And now he looked at her like she had tricked him, like she was a different person that he didn’t recognize. Like he was afraid of her, disgusted by her.

Daenerys didn’t understand. She had told him everything about her, had opened her heart to him like she had never done before with anyone else, she had trusted him completely.

What right did he have to look at her that way now?

He had betrayed her. The moment he revealed the truth to his family, he had betrayed her.

Three treasons will you know. Once for blood and once for gold and once for love. The words she heard in the House of the Undying so long ago came back to her. Was Jon the third treason?

Daenerys tried one last time, to appeal to him.

"Is that all I am to you?"

A kiss. A scream for help.

But he rejected her once again, putting distance between them.

Daenerys felt it, in that moment, like a tear deep inside her chest. Something in her had broken. It wasn’t her heart, it was more than that. It was like her entire being was being broken apart.

It lasted but a few seconds, and then…and then there was nothing.

The pain was gone, the anger was gone, the fear was gone. All that was left was clarity. She knew what she needed to do now.

“Then let it be fear.” She said, and she almost didn’t recognize her own voice. It was flat, emotionless.

If she had looked in the mirror in that moment she would have seen her eyes, usually so warm and expressive, passionate, turned cold.

She was a dragon. She thrived in fire. But her fire was gone. And all that was left was ice.