Damon walked out of his chambers and down the stairs; they were being hosted at the castle of one of Robb's bannermen but Damon hadn't cared enough to learn the name, the sigil, or even listen to precisely where they were; for all he cared they could have been taken to Casterly Rock to feast with the Lannisters. As he stepped outside into the cool night air he got a few curious glances but nobody stopped him. Robb had given orders, he hadn't told him as such, but Damon knew; everyone watched him with wary eyes, like he was a mad man and they were waiting for him to break. They watched him closely, far more scared of him than they were worried. The women whispered about him too, he knew that; he saw them whisper then hush up quick whenever he entered a room. Not too long ago it was the other way around, just the sight of him would set women atwitter.

After a trudge through the grounds, his boots already covered in mud, he found his way to a godswood; he supposed that meant they were in the north somewhere. Damon had never been one for the old gods, but he thought it would be the only place to find some solitude, however the cautious eyes from inside were replaced by eyes that bled red. The godswood appeared to give Damon no respite so far.

He lay down on an open area of grass, it was damp from a nights rain - or yesterdays snow - he wasn't particularly sure. He wasn't sure of much lately, he carried on behind his prickly facade, more distant than ever; everybody said that Damon was broken, he gazed up at the stars and wondered if maybe they were right. His mind began to drift to thoughts that he should not be thinking, of dragons stuck in the sky and the flickering stars that were their fire breath. He shook his head and closed his eyes, trying to push the thoughts away. Talk of dragons or of Daenerys would view him as a traitor, and Eddard Stark had given a vivid display of what happened to traitors. But that had been Joffery and this was Robb, Damon told himself, Robb was his friend. Perhaps he'd just make him take the black... he let the thought drift through his mind, Damon wasn't fool enough to have any illusions of life on the Wall and the more he thought about the clearer his decision became. He would rather lose his head.

Once the mention of the beggar king in Pentos and his little lamb of a sister would have made Damon laugh. No, he didn't hate them, he'd just been a boy during Robert's Rebellion and he'd been fed stories of the mad Targaryen King and in his childish mind he was the villain, and for a while he did hate him. But then he grew, he learnt of Rheagar and Elia and the horrors of war; life wasn't like songs and stories of heroes, and the Targaryens were just as much victims as their people. But the thought of a thirteen year old girl and her brother, lost in stories of older times, brought no fear to his mind; the thought of them rising and taking the Seven Kingdoms was some joke he shared with his men. But now the beautiful Targaryen girl would not leave him mind, and there was no laughter to his thoughts now. It was as though she was mocking him, as though the whole word was mocking him, finally giving Damon someone whom he cared for, that was everything he wanted and yet he could never have. He opened his eyes to see the red ones staring back, laughing at him. His father had always told him how cruel the gods were, truly Damon hadn't believed in their power before but now he was sure, if they did exist it was only to bring pain and misery; they were not gods of joy. If there were gods of love, they had died long ago and left only a bitter taste to their memory.

Finally Damon rose to his feet, he would have to make a choice soon, he knew that. He knew now, just how powerful Daenerys was, how capable she was of taking the Seven Kingdoms. And eventually it would come down to the day that Damon had to choose between his family, both of blood and bond, and between the woman he had fallen in love with. And it was a decision that he did not want to make. Hi