Arya was wandering around the castle when she realized she was in the workshop. She was standing in the dark watching Gendry work on a sword. She watched every move he made and how happy he looked. She couldn't remember seeing that smile for some time now. He was working on it with a hammer and had a proud smirk on his face and so did she. She would agree that smiths of King's landing were nothing compared to Gendry. He was one of the best and he could make any weapon he was asked to make. He didn't stop working or moved his look from the sword.
''Lady Stark, what can I do for you?''
She smirked at him. She knew it was some provocation. He knew how much she hated being called lady… So she decided to give it back to him by calling him by his new title and last name.
''Lord Baratheon, I am surprised to see you here…''
''My queen asked for help and I can't deny her.''
''My sister asked you?''
''Actually, lord Tyrion did…but I am guessing it came from her.''
''That is possible. After the battle of Winterfell she did compliment your work.''
''I am glad she loves how I work.''
''So, this is going to happen again? It's not proper for a lord to do things like that.''
''It's not proper for a lady to be in the pants and yet…''
There was moment of silence.
''Why are you here Arya? Did you come to see if you managed to arrange my marriage?''
''Don't bother… I knew it was you as soon as queen approached the subject.''
''Why are you against it?''
''I am not against marriage… I am against being forced into one…''
''You are a lord now… That is how lords and ladies get married. You marry for political reasons, not love… And if you are lucky, you find love…Like my sister and Lord Tyrion.''
''I already love someone, but she is being an ass.''
''What is it?''
''I am not an ass… I am looking out for you!''
''How?! By passing me on to a next girl?''
''By giving you a chance for normal life.''
''And did you sit and wonder for a moment what do I want?!''
''You want a family and home.''
''I want you Arya… I don't care about castles and things I got with the Baratheon name… I want you to be my wife and to live life to the fullest with you. Only reason I accepted the Baratheon name was to marry you LADY Stark… Because I knew that a lady could never marry a bastard… So, I took the name and all just to be worthy of you Arya… I did it for you… I don't need the land and all… I will go upstairs and tell your sister that I don't want the name and all… You already stated that you don't want to marry me, so I don't need it anymore.''
Arya was nervous… She wanted him too, but she was scared. Being alone was easier than being heartbroken or potentially disappointed.
''It could never work… You will regret giving it all up.''
''I don't need it if you don't want me… I don't want to marry someone just to produce and heir…''
''You don't want children?''
''I might want them…But if I have them, I want them out of love, not duty… I want a woman I love to be their mother… Not someone who was sent to me just for the family name… I feel this picking of a wife looks like when I was picking cows for the estate.''
Arya rolled her eyes.
''They came with bunch of papers and told me her family history and why she would be good and how much milk her mother produced.''
''Well that is marriage in the high circles.''
''I don't want that. I want you!''
''I will never be a proper wife… I will never be a lady…''
''I don't give a damn!''
''You are insane!''
''Maybe, but I know what I want…. You don't have to marry me… But I am giving up the estate and I can be traveling blacksmith…''
''If I say yes… What do we do?''
''What do you want to do Arya? How do you see yourself?''
''I want to travel…Explore…''
''So, you will marry me even if I don't have estates?''
''Do I have to marry you?''
''You want us to spend our lives being lovers?''
Arya smiled at that.
''All our lives? That is an optimism…''
''I am in if you are. I don't need a blessing from any of the Gods to love you Arya Stark.''
''And how about my sister? She is planning your wedding?''
''She expects the answer tomorrow…''
''And what will you tell her?''
''That I don't want my title and that her sister is the one to blame. I'd rather be poor smith that might cross your way during one of your travels than unhappy lord.''
She came to him and kissed him. She didn't care he was all sweaty and filthy from working. She just wanted him.
''Let's go back to my chambers.''
''It's my last night as a lord… I will never be this comfortable again...''
They went back to his chambers and Arya asked for a bath for him. He washed himself and they made love for most of the night. She had so many things on her mind…So many questions for him but she had no idea what to say or how to ask.
''Do you like being a lord?''
''I am not sure I am good at it.''
''From what I saw, you are doing a good job…''
''I am when it comes to estate and doing the work… But I hate being in here and seeing all other lords and ladies… I feel out of place.''
''I always felt like that too. Sansa's needle work was always on point. She could do her hair in incredible ways. Dresses always looked perfect on her… and I… I was never good at those girly things. Becoming a ''boy'' was the best thing that happened to me. I could be in pants. My hair was short.''
''I love being at home and being in simple comfortable clothes… I even work in my own shop there …I make weapons and some tools too… But I never told that to your lady sister…''
''I don't want her to be angry at me…and think that I could never be a proper gentleman.''
Arya laughed at it.
''She is married to Tyrion… Gentlemen are out of the window now.''
''He is a good and very smart man… He loves her and the kids more than anything… ''
''Yes, he does…''
''I dared to think about leaving it all after the talk I had with him.''
''Yes, he made me realize that you are worth more than any estate… I know that you are a bit cold and distant…But that is who you are…and I grew to love it about you… You lived some incredible things. Some of them were not that nice… I know that you are one of the faceless, and as much as it scares me, I respect all the effort you made… Yes, you are not conventional woman, but I don't care… I just want you Arya Stark… And I don't care about anything else.''
''Because I love you…and I don't think I could ever stop.''
''That is stupid!''
''I know… But I don't care… You Arya Star are it for me… So, it's up to you what we do now.''
She was silent for a moment….
''Fine…. We will get married… We will spend a year on your estate trying to find someone to take care of it… And then we will travel somewhere… We will do it for the next few years… Year on the estate and year on the road… Children are not the topic I am ready to talk about yet… I want to leave that option opened, but not now! I am not ready to be a mother… I am not Sansa who is born for it.''
''I can live with that.''
''Good… And we are eloping… I am not doing any of the wedding stuff and now being in a dress.''
''I can live with it.''
''Good… Then we are in agreement.''
He smiled at her and she looked at him.
''What is it now?''
''Well, this also looked like conversation about getting a cow.''
''You do have a death wish?''
''Pretty much since I met you.''
''I am happy you said yes.''
That night when Tyrion came back to bed, Sansa was already there and one of the boys was on her chest. Tyrion couldn't see the face of the boy, but he still had huge smile on his face. His wife and his son… He was a happy man…lucky dwarf… He had perfect wife and three even more perfect children. He took off his pants and coat and got under covers next to Sansa.
''What is wrong with the baby?''
''Little Jamie was crying and I took him to try to calm him.''
''He is asleep now…''
''Yes, but I can't part from him… I just miss him… I spend too much time being a queen… I am afraid our children will hate me.''
''They will not… I am sure we will find a way for you to be a queen and a mother… You are going to make them part of your rule and teach them that being a sovereign and a parent doesn't have to be a bad thing.''
''Is it? They will grow up with other women…''
''No, they will grow up with you… Sitting in the small council… playing in the corner… Listening to you give your speeches, watching you make sometimes some tough choices… They will see that their mother is one of the most powerful people they will ever know… And not just because you are a queen, but because you are Sansa Stark… You are a fighter and a woman worth of admiration. And I love you…''
She was touched by his words. He really believed in her and that they would be good parents to their children.
''I want Joana on the throne. It's her right… Her mother was a queen and she should be one.''
''My love… We have so much time to think about it… I want Joana to stop bighting my fingers because she is teething… When we grow out of those children things, we will think about their adult lives.''
Nurse came for baby Jamie and Sansa gave him to her.
''I miss him already.''
''I know my love…''
He opened his arms for her and she just gave him a look.
''I just gave birth… Don't even think about it!''
He was laughing at her.
''I just wanted to hold you… I was not trying to do anything else…''
''I don't believe you… It's you Tyrion and you do love…certain bedroom activities.''
''I do… But I will respect your restrictions.''
''Woman, I will not force you to do anything you don't want… I am not that sort of men.''
''I know… I am sorry.''
She put her head on his chest and he was stoking her hair.
''So, you owe me an answer your grace.''
''I do, don't I?''
''Well… I think I would be happiest if we were at your estate or even Winterfell away from all this… We would have much simpler life, we would be happy. Surrounded by the sea and our kids. I am sorry we never got to do it. I am not really someone who wanted the crown.''
Tyrion kissed her hair and smiled.
''Well, we have sea here too… So we can take them out and show them the sea… We can teach them how to swim too… We can do it all my love.''
''Yes, we can… Do you know why?''
''Because we work together…. You and I are an alliance that works.''
''Speaking of alliances.. Gendry has to give me his answer tomorrow.''
''I hope your sister gets her head out of her ass…''
Sansa just looked at him.
''You think she will?''
''I don't know my love… Matters of the heart are complicated…''
''She loves him.''
''And he loves her too.''
''I just wish for her to be happy and be loved…''
''No, not like us… I wish her to be happy in the way she needs it. I am not her… We are much different and I guess we have different concept of happiness. I am happy being a wife and a mother… She would not be happy with that.''
''I think she would… But just her concept of being a wife would be different…''
''I guess that is a possibility too.''
''Don't be surprised if you have to order two wedding suits instead of suit and a dress.''
''I didn't expect her to marry in a dress…''
''Good… because that would get you killed.''
Sansa smiled at him.
''Do you think she would say yes to him?''
''I think that there is a chance… I think that after you mentioning the wedding and picking a girl, she has pretty good idea what she is about to lose.''
''I just wish them to be happy.''
''They will… They will find their own way to be happy and live their lives. We found our way Sansa, so will they.''
''I hope so.''
Tyrion and Sansa fell asleep and they held on to one another. Both of them were very grateful for the life they built and the love they found. Now they wished that others would find it too. Sansa hoped that Arya would make best choice for herself and that she would be able to stand behind said and done.