He watched them scrabble together, laughing as his white pup was nipped at by Arya's Nymeria and turned tail to chase her. It was astounding how... human they looked, these direwolf pups, although pups they would not be for long. They were already growing big, and as they grew, their personalities and odd similarities to their individual owners seemed to shine through. Bran's pup - the only other wolf who was yet to be named - catching wind of the game Nymeria and the albino were playing, made a high pitched yapping sound and joined the chase, snapping his teeth playfully as he ran. His chase was cut short as Shaggydog, Rickon's little black shadow, pounced on him, growling. It was clear to Jon, and indeed to everyone, that Shaggydog was already shaping up as the most unpredictable and volatile of the pack, but he seemed to suit the youngest Stark just fine. Robb's Grey Wind, ever the pack leader, padded over and growled until the fight was ended. About a foot away, Lady sat with the elegant dignity that thrilled Sansa so much when she came to her, watching her littermates play with a wary eye, close enough to see but not close enough to be a part of the ruckus.
Then Robb's voice could be heard, calling out to the puppies to come and get their food, and in a scramble of fur and noise five of the six wolves dashed off towards where it came from. One stayed behind and turned to where Jon was standing, not a sound escaping him. The albino pup padded over to where Jon stood, sitting at his feet and staring up at him.
"Did you know I was here the whole time?" Jon asked him, suspecting that somehow he had. And why not? Jon had known where the white wolf was when nobody else had, why not the other way around? "Why aren't you off eating with the others, eh? Do you need a seperate invitation?"
The pup continued to stare at him, making no sound. Jon put his hand on the albino's head, gently stroking his fur. "Shall I take you?" Jon asked. "Robb called on you all, you know." He walked away a few steps. The albino was indeed padding after him when he turned around. And what a quiet animal he was! An animal already the same size as a grown dog should make some noise when he walks, but the albino was silent as the grave, very different from his noisy pack.
Jon sometimes wondered, did the puppy sense his own difference to his brothers and sisters? They were loud where he was quiet, black and brown where he was white. They had been found together while the albino had almost been left behind. Had they truly chased him away, Jon wondered, or had the white wolf simply gotten lost? And did the albino really notice the difference, or was perhaps Jon projecting onto his new pet? "What do you think, pup?" he asked. The wolf stared up at him silently, and Jon laughed, kneeling down and beckoning the animal over. "I know you know what I'm saying," he told him when the wolf's muzzle was close to his face, his red eyes staring directly into Jon's own eyes.
The wolf nuzzled his face gently. "You know what I'm going to ask Uncle Benjen, don't you? You understand me. I know you do, I can tell. Will you be alright to leave them? Your brothers and sisters? We'll visit sometimes, I promise."
The albino made no noise, once again staring at Jon, and was it Jon's imagination, or did his facial expression seem to question who Jon was really asking?
"You're a clever wolf," Jon told the pup. "You won't mind, will you? You know everything. You listen."
The wolf nuzzled him again, bucking under his arm until it rested over the puppy's snow-white back.
"You're like me, aren't you?" Jon asked him softly. "Seperate from the rest. White as snow." He got to his feet, wiping the wet from the snow on the ground from his knees. "Come on, let's get you food."
He walked away again, once again having to stop to make sure the albino was following him.
"And quiet," he mused after stopping again. "I've never met an animal so quiet. You're like...you're like a ghost."
The wolf nudged him on the leg, and Jon smiled, knowing for certain what his pup was trying to tell him. "You like that?" he asked. "Ghost?" Another nudge. "Alright then. Let's be ghosts together."
Thanks to everyone who has read, reviewed and favourited this fic since I started. I'm glad you enjoyed it, and hopefully I can try my hand at some other ASoIAF fic in the future, but for now, as they say The end.