Thank you to golden elanor, mepenguin15, robinsmum, LovingBOBThePacific and BlueSapphire92 for reviewing. In this Rickon is six and Jon is 17. I had no idea what to do with Rickon and Jon so I looked a little into my own life experience. Enjoy :)
Disclaimer: I do not own Game of Thrones or ASOIAF
Jon knew Rickon hated being the youngest of the family. Having four, well, five older siblings was not something the young boy enjoyed, and it was something that his brothers and sisters tended to miss.
Rickon was the baby of the family, he knew. He was spoiled by them all, but, also, he had noticed, largely ignored. Whenever the youngest Stark tried to say something, the others would speak over him because, what was important to Rickon, was not really important to them.
Yes, they babied him and pampered him and they all adored the boy… but they never really listened to him. They often forgot that children needed to have their voices heard. Even if they wanted to talk of something silly like a new game they invented or the monsters in Old Nan's stories.
They forgot, but Jon didn't.
Jon seemed to be the only one who had noticed little Rickon's struggle speak out. Then again, Jon always had had a knack for seeing things, when one was as quiet as he, it gave you a chance to really notice things; it was also in his nature, he supposed. So, of course, he noticed when that same little boy was running through the courtyard, holding a small satchel and an apple, looking as if he was about to face his doom. And, of course, Jon did the responsible thing; he followed him.
Rickon wandered to the castle gates, ducking behind some crates to avoid the guard spotting him, Jon almost chuckled at this but kept quiet. As soon as the guard looked away, a small figure darted from behind the crates and vanished through the gates the next second.
Jon simply nodded to the guard and continued to follow his younger brother; wondering what he was doing. They walked for several minutes, Rickon looking all around but momentarily forgetting to check behind him.
It was only a little later, that Rickon finally noticed he had a follower and as soon as he saw his older brother, his eyes had widened almost comically. He tried to escape from Jon, but it was too late, and his brother too close. Jon had quickly snatched Rickon up, grabbing him under his arms.
"Woah there, little brother." Jon said, his voice calming as Rickon struggled against him for a few moments. It was only when the younger boy finally stilled that the other loosened his grip slightly. "If I put you down, will you stay close?" Rickon glared at his elder brother but nodded anyways, crossing his arms in front of his chest with a huff of defiance when Jon did as promised.
"You made me drop my apple." The little boy stated, still glaring. The seriousness of Rickon's expression combined with his angry stance could only make Jon let out a low chuckle.
"Forgive me, I meant it not as any offense." He said through his smile. "Now, if you don't mind my asking, but where do you think you're going?" For a moment the littlest Stark gave no answer.
"Away." Came his small voice suddenly.
"Away." Jon repeated, an eyebrow raised. "Why is that, exactly?"
"Because." Rickon looked away, staring at his feet as he shuffled awkwardly. With a weary sigh, Jon placed a hand on the boy's shoulder, before crouching down so he could look him in the eye.
"Why?" He asked once more.
"No one ever listens to me. They think I am stupider than them." Rickon replied, his voice sounding older than his six years, the sadness bringing it down. "I'm not needed there." There was a moment of silence as Jon processed as much; it was pretty much what he had expected.
He suddenly straightened from his crouch, an idea popping with his head.
"So you want to run away?" Jon asked, to which little Rickon nodded. "Alright then." Had it been any other time, he would have laughed at his younger brother's decidedly shocked expression. "I won't stop you… If you want to go live out there, all on your own, then it is up to you, brother."
"W-What?" Jon ignored Rickon's question, instead reaching down to pick up the fallen apple, handing it to the boy.
"You may need this. There is not much food to be found on the Kingsroad and it's near a week's walk to get to the next city." Jon glanced at the youngest Stark; pleased to see his plan was already working when he saw the boy's face pale slightly. "Did you bring any spare clothes? Gold?"
When Rickon didn't answer, Jon reached for the satchel around the boy's neck, looking through it.
"Well, at least you brought some extra breeches." He murmured before reaching to a heavy pouch on his belt, pulling it off and quickly placing it in Rickon's small hands. "Here is some gold, it should be enough to grant you passage to Wintertown, or it may buy you enough food to last a few days." He placed the satchel back over the younger's shoulders. "Good luck on your journey and farewell."
Without another word, Jon turned around and began walking the other direction, leaving a speechless Rickon in his wake.
Jon did not have to wait long until he felt a small hand tug on his own, causing him look down at the very same boy he had left only moments before. Jon graced his brother with a rare smile, before pulling him along back to the gates of Winterfell, knowing he would not attempt to run away from their home.
"You know, you're family may not always listen, but they do care for you." Jon's sudden announcement was only met with silence. "They will listen to you soon enough and, even they don't, running away is not the answer, Rickon. You are a Stark, and when winter is coming, Starks stay and fight." He glanced down at his brother again, to see him looking back up, considering. "Besides, why would you want to leave? You have food on the table, a warm bed at night, all of your friends are here, you're parents, Robb, Sansa, Arya, Bran…" Jon mumbled to himself.
"And I have you." Rickon added in, louder than before, already trying to get himself heard.
"That you do." Jon replied, bending down suddenly to lift the boy in his arms, proceeding to carry his youngest brother back to the castle.
In that moment, Jon knew Rickon would be just fine. He had found his voice, after all.
That's the close for Only Half, I hope you all enjoyed it and I just want to thank all of you who stuck with it! If any of you like this kind of family fic for GOT, you may see similar ones from me, so be on the look out!