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Lionesses

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“Father’s trying to marry me off again,” Joanna sighs.

With the firelight’s glow about her mass of golden curls, the lioness of Lannister looks like her sigil come to life. Her lips are pursed together, but Genna thinks that if her cousin bared her teeth she could frighten away all the night terrors. Even her carefully manicured fingers could be claws—if Joanna wanted them to be.

“What are you going to do?” Genna doesn’t make the clucking sounds of sympathy that some of the court maidens do, when they all discuss their marriage prospects. Other maidens might find themselves doomed to a certain fate. Not Joanna Lannister.

The other girl laughs, bright and proud, and climbs under the covers with Genna. “I’ll tell him no, very sweetly, until he gives in.”

“Of course you will.” Genna laughs with her and snuggles in for warmth.