A Fish Out of Water


I took a deep breath and steeled myself before exiting the chambers and going into the castle proper. Time to put the mask on and start faking it. It had been five days since I found myself in Westeros, in the body of Edmure Tully of all people, and it hadn't gotten any easier. I'd read my share of self insert fanfics, and lucky me I had been a rabid Song of Ice and Fire fan back in the day. But in all honesty that did very little to prepare a man for something like this.

It was the little things that got you, like trying to figure out who the hell everyone was while not letting on you couldn't recognize your 'childhood friends.' Dealing with the sidelong glances when you didn't laugh at the same jokes, or in my case failing to indulge in Edmure's habit of carousing and mild-debauchery. And all those stories that talked about self-inserts and their 'muscle memory'? What a joke! I had no idea what to do with a sword. Thank whoever or whatever that it was apparently 'in-character' for Edmure to avoid the practice yard. And thank my mother for insisting I take horse-riding lessons as a child, or I would have REALLY been in trouble.

That said, I'd already gone through most of the cycles of 'grief.' I'd gotten disbelief out of the system pretty quickly; being stuck in a freaking castle with everyone 'm'lording' you dealt with that fast. I'd also gone through rage and tears the last few nights as well. I was stuck now in resignation. There was no obvious way home. I was in Edmure Tully's body. I was the heir to Riverrun. I was also stuck in the middle of the riverlands sometime before the war of five kings. Great.

And honestly, I didn't even really know what to do. Sure if those stories I had read were anything to go by, I should jump right to 'uplifting' the riverlands. Introduce crop rotations, or gunpowder, or the printing press or whatever. Truth be told though, I didn't have the faintest *clue* how to go about doing that. I mean, what did I know about gunpowder? It had something to do with saltpeter I think? I was a bloody mid-level manager. A glorified paper-pusher, not an engineer. Worse, I didn't even know how close to the events of the books I was. Somewhat close I suspected, since my father was already ill. But a year before? A month? How much time did I have? I had not yet found a way to casually drop into conversation 'say, is Jon Arryn still alive?' And how useful could my 'book knowledge' really be in saving my skin and preventing the fate I/Edmure suffered in the series?

All this meant that I had finally decided last night I had to just 'roll' with it. I mean, how much worse could I actually make things? I had to stop worrying someone would 'find me out' and just start DOING things. I mean really, what was I worried about? Even in a fantasy world with shadow babies and dragons, the idea of someone from another dimension where your whole world was a novel being sucked into your Liege lord's body was sort of absurd.

About the only thing I *did* have going for me, twisted and horrible as it sounded, was that Hoster, my father, was on his last legs. I'd had two conversations with the old man since I'd found myself here, and while his mind was still mostly there, he was pretty much bed-ridden. Unless I went to him and specifically asked him what to do, I was pretty much left to my own devices and defacto in-charge here. Scary thought that.

So. Time to put plan 'don't end up with Ryman Frey marching you to the gallows every-morning' into action. And for that, I needed to do something. Anything. Probably starting with going out the chamber doors. Deep breath. Game face on. Out I go.