A/N: I am so sorry for the wait! This has been the hardest chapter to write; I must have changed my mind on how it was supposed to end at least three times. Also, most of the dialogue has been taken straight from the book; I know that's lazy writing, but it worked best with my original idea. I'm sorry. Let me know what you think?
A/N2: Thanks to Emberwillow14 for betaing.
The North was really excruciatingly boring, as was Winterfell in particular. There didn't seem to be anything to do, outside of training. It was at times like these that Jaime Lannister almost envied other men: the only thing the others seemed to do was visit the brothel in town. At least that is what Tyrion liked to say. Jaime could only scoff at his younger brother at these times, replying that he could not visit the brothel lest he break his Kingsguard vows.
His brother needn't know that he broke those vows on a regular basis.
But that still left Jaime with very little to do to entertain himself beyond his Kingsguard duties. Thank the Gods for Cersei. Even with his lovely sister there to distract him, the Royal visit was dragging on too long. He couldn't wait to get back to King's Landing, and he knew that Cersei felt the same way. Fortunately, they were getting ready to set out within the next week. Their departure couldn't come soon enough for Jaime, though.
There was a tension running throughout the entire castle, and while Jaime was usually able to ignore such things with ease, even he was starting to feel stifled by it.
It appeared that Lord Eddard Stark had managed to anger his lovely wife by not mentioning to her that his bastard would be going to court. If Jaime were a good man, he would feel sorry for the poor woman. But, as it was widely acknowledged up here in the North, he wasn't a good man, and he found the entire situation rather amusing. And rather curious, as well; he couldn't figure out why Lord Stark would subject his precious bastard to the cruelty of the South.
That is, he was curious until he noticed how the king watched the pretty bastard with a familiar, hungry gleam in his eye.
Then Jaime was curious if Ned knew that his best friend wanted to turn his son into one of his whores.
He was still trying to figure out how to work that little piece of knowledge to his own advantage. In the meantime, the tension was getting stifling and he needed a distraction.
It had been quite by accident that the twins had found the crumbling, abandoned tower, but it was the perfect spot for their secret couplings. It had once been a watch tower, but it was evident that it had fallen into disuse a great many years ago. Now there were only the crows keeping company with the dust that blanketed everything, the stone walls that were crumbling and creaking in the wind. But despite all its faults, the tower walls were thick. No one would discover them there; it was perfect.
At least, it would be perfect if Cersei would just stop talking.
"I don't like it," she was saying for probably the third time since they had undressed. Jaime rolled his eyes, causing his sister to glower darkly at him. "You should be the Hand."
Jaime almost laughed out loud at the absurdity. "Gods forbid. It's not an honour I'd want." He stretched lazily, grinning and shrugging when his sister shot him an icredulous look. "There's far too much work involved."
Cersei practically snarled at him and stepped right up to him, standing close enough that he could feel her breasts brushing against his own chest with every breath she took. "Don't you see the danger this puts us in? Robert loves the man like a brother."
Jaime couldn't hold back the snort of laughter that escaped as he gazed down into the piercing green eyes that were identical to his own. "Robert can barely stomach his brothers. Not that I blame him." He tugged playfully at one of his twin's golden locks, trying to make her smile. "Stannis would be enough to give anyone indigestion."
"Don't play the fool!" She swatted his hand away from herself irritably and turned to start pacing around the room restlessly. "Stannis and Renly are one thing, and Eddard Stark is quite another. Robert will listen to Stark. Damn them both!" She growled as she started making her way back to Jaime. "I should have insisted that he name you, but I was certain Stark would refuse him."
Jaime watched his sister pace in silence for a long moment, silently thanking the gods that Stark hadn't refused; they couldn't afford the suspicion that would hang over them if he, the Kingslayer, had been named Hand. Plus, he rather enjoyed being a knight. But he knew that Cersei still needed to be reassured. "We ought to count ourselves fortunate. The King might as easily have named one of his brothers, or even Littlefinger, gods help us." He ran his fingers through his own thick golden hair, almost shuddering at that thought. If Littlefinger had been named the Hand of the King, his own life might as well be forfeit. That little man had a way of knowing too many things. "Give me honourable enemies rather than ambitious ones, and I'll sleep more easily by night."
Cersei stopped in her pacing to give the man another incredulous look. Jaime could see that she did not understand how having Eddard Stark as the Hand could possibly be a good thing, and he was sick and tired of trying to explain it to her.
Ned Stark could always be trusted to do the honourable thing, and that made him predictable.
"We will have to watch him carefully," she finally muttered in concession, resuming her brisk pacing of the tower.
Jaime actually did roll his eyes, hoping that his sister had finally realized the truth in his words and they could finally let the matter drop. There was nothing they could do about now, at any rate. "I would sooner watch you. Come back here." He reached out swiftly as she passed close by him and pulled her against his chest with one hard tug. She started to struggle, as she always did, the anger and annoyance written clear on her face. But he held her tight, bringing his lips to the soft, pale skin of her throat.
"You are as blind as Robert," Cersei growled, shoving ineffectually against his hard chest to try and free herself.
"Jaime groaned quietly in frustration, still refusing to let the woman go. "If you mean I see the same thing, yes," he growled slowly, not yet taking his lips from her neck. "I see a man who would sooner die than betray his king."
Cersei refused to be set off track however, tangling her fingers in the thick golden hair of her twin brother and yanking his head away from her. "He betrayed one already, or have you forgotten?" She hissed angrily, glaring into the mirror green eyes. "Oh, I don't deny he's loyal to Robert, that's obvious. What happens when Robert dies and Joff takes the throne? And the sooner that comes to pass, the safer we'll all be. My husband grows more restless every day. Having Stark beside him will only make him worse." She sighed in frustration and released her tight grip on Jaime's hair. "He's still in love with the sister, the insipid little dead sixteen-year-old. How long until he decides to put me aside for some new Lyanna?"
Jaime thought bout the dark, hungry glee that entered the king's eye every time Stark's bastard came into sight, how the pretty young bastard looked so much like a younger Ned Stark and in turn, he supposed, like Lyanna Stark.
You may be replaced sooner than you think, dear sister, Jaime mused silently. Out loud, though, he said, "You should think less about the future and more about the pleasures at hand." He leaned forward to bite at her throat playfully.
"Stop that!" Since she had stopped struggling, he had loosened his hold on her; now she jerked away to slap him hard across the face.
Jaime couldn't hold back his laughter; he adored how vicious and strong his beautiful sister was at all times. "All this talk is getting very tiresome, sister," he responded in a low voice, the one he knew that Cersei could not resist. He reached out and caught her by her slender wrist again, pushing her up against the cold wall. "Come her and be quiet."
Cersei pressed halfheartedly against his broad chest before she was pinned to the wall. Her lips met his just as eagerly in the passionate kiss, her hands sliding up his chest to grasp at his shoulder. He smirked against her lips, his own hands sliding down her smooth, perfect body to pull her hips against his. Finally they were about to get down to what they came to the crumbling tower for. His smirk widened as he trailed his lips back down to her throat, one of his hands slipping between her thighs to press inside her.
"Stop it," she moaned lowly, her actions belying her words as she tilted her head back and spread her legs for him. He knew she didn't mean stop. "Stop it, stop it. Oh please . . ." Whatever she was going to say next was lost to yet another moan as she tangled her fingers in his hair to push his head down to her ample chest. He could take the hint easily enough and wrapped his lips around her nipple to suck on it lightly, his tongue lapping lightly at the nub.
But the there was another sound; a sound like a gasp that came from too far away to have fallen from Cersei's lips. Then his sister was screaming and shoving him away from herself, pointing frantically to the window across the room.
"There was a face!" She shrieked wildly as an explanation.
Both of the twins rushed to the opening, only to look down at the face of one of the younger stark sons dangling precariously from the window's ledge. Jaime was rather impressed; the boy must have climbed all the way up the side of the tower on his own, which took not only courage, but no less of skill. He saw the recognition flit across the child's face as they stared at one another, the boy scrambling to find a good grip on the ledge desperately.
"He saw us!" Cersei cried, her beautiful eyes filled with shock and a little fear.
"So he did," he replied thoughtfully, trying to figure out a way to convince the boy to keep their little secret to himself. He sighed as the child slipped another inch, and reached down. "Take my hand, before you fall."
"What are you doing?!" Cersei demanded harshly, backing up a foot or so away from the window, the fear of discovery still written plain on her face.
Jaime ignored her; instead, as soon as he felt the small hand latch on to his own, he dragged the small body to safety. "How old are you boy?" he asked as he stood the boy up on the ledge. He could feel Cersei's withering glare on his back.
The boy didn't have a chance to answer; Cersei had suddenly lunged forward and, her seemingly delicate hands planted firmly on the boy's chest, shoved him out the window. There was a split second when the child seemed to almost be floating outside, a terrified expression on his face. Then he was falling rapidly downwards, a shrill scream trailing behind him. A quiet, but sickening thump cut the noise off suddenly.
In the distance, a wolf howled.
"Well," Jaime muttered after a moment of silence, moving away from the window rapidly to collect his clothing. "That is one way to make certain he wouldn't speak."
"I had to do it," she snapped back, pulling her own dress on. "We don't know how much he heard on top of what he saw! He would have told his father, and then my life would be forfeit!"
"Our lives, dear sister," he reminded her with a wry smile, pausing a moment to admire the sight of her getting dressed. "And mine moreso than yours, I'd wager. My vows are rather strict on that front. At least your husband also breaks your marriage vows on a regular basis. He won't be so harsh on you."
"My husband doesn't like other people touching his possessions," Cersei shot back at her brother. "Hence, starting a war over a woman." She moved across the tower to leave, but Jaime grabbed her arm and pulled her against his chest once more. "What are you doing?!"
"One last kiss," he smirked, cutting off any protest she might have made with a hard, passionate kiss.
She kissed him back for a brief moment before jerking away and slapping the man again. He laughed as he watched her storm out, waiting a few minutes before following.
The wolf continued to howl.