A/N: Alright, so this sort of came into my head recently while I was catching up on Season 3. I thought I might explore a bit more of Lysa Arryn while I was at it, because we only ever see her as a mad and paranoid woman and I wanted to show she got that way. I'm sorry if she's OOC, do let me know!
A note on names and ages: they use Robin instead of Robert in the TV show, so I thought it might be better to go with that. In Season 2, Joffrey is mentioned as being seventeen. I'm assuming at this point that Robb Stark is about nineteen. Therefore, Tamara is between them in age. I own nothing except Tamara Arryn! Please, enjoy, and please do review!
When Lysa Arryn first discovered that she was pregnant, she fell into a flurry of anticipation and trepidation. She had been worried that she may not conceive a child due to her husband's old age, and she anxiously waited each month to see if her bleeding would come. When it did, she was always bitterly disappointed. Sometimes she was reduced to tears, angry at herself and the gods for the lack of child between her and her husband.
Her relationship with Jon was not close – the man was old enough to be her father at least – and as such, making love was not an experience Lysa relished. She lay still and let Jon do as he pleased, as she had always known was her duty. Her husband was not a forceful or rough man, but it seemed as though making love was simply a duty to him as well. No words were spoken before or after, and Lysa would often console herself. When she bore a child, it would all be worth it.
She carried a son, she was sure of it. The Eyrie, which Lysa had always perceived as cold and soulless, became alive at the news that Lady Arryn was with child. She spun and danced and for a brief amount of time, Lysa was the sweet girl from the Vale who had laughed and swam with her sister Catelyn. Yet when her belly started to swell with the child she carried, Lysa's thoughts drifted to Petyr.
He had been drunk that night, rambunctious due to the sweet Dornish wine of which he had consumed too much. Lysa had longed for him for some time, she did not care that she was unmarried. Her father would never allow her to marry Petyr, for he was too lowborn, yet it was only Petyr she desired. Only Petyr's sharp eyes followed her older sister Catelyn too much, so much so that when he agreed to accompany her from the feast, Lysa was both delighted and surprised.
Petyr was a skilled lover, even though it was a first time for both of them. The pain was worth it, if only so Lysa could truly call Petyr hers. She clung to him as he drew ragged breaths, her room silent apart from the creaking of the bed and the occasional moan. Yet as he drew close to his finish, Petyr ruined everything.
"Catelyn," he moaned, kissing down Lysa's neck.
She could forgive him. He was drunk, and drunk people always did silly things. Yet it was she would have given up her maidenhead, not Catelyn. Petyr tugged on his clothes and left in a rush, worried that Hoster would catch them out. Yet Lysa clutched at her pillow and wept bitterly, for she did not understand why it was not her name that Petyr would rasp out.
When she had later discovered she was with child, Lysa was both terrified and triumphant. Surely now her father would have to allow her to marry Petyr, and everything could be as she had imagined it. There would be a beautiful wedding and Petyr would come to love her, she knew that he would. Yet when Lysa told Hoster, he was deeply disappointed in his youngest daughter. He instructed her to drink moon tea to rid herself of the shame that bound her and Petyr together. For Petyr was lowborn, and Lysa was highborn, and she could not marry him.
Hoster always told Lysa she was fortunate to marry any man, let alone the Warden of the East. Yet Lysa only ever saw an old, frail man, and she yearned for her Petyr more than ever. Now, with her husband's child in her belly, Lysa decided she must make the best of her circumstances. When she birthed Jon's son, surely he would love her more, pay her more attention.
Her husband had seemed delighted when he had wrote to her from King's Landing. He was always there now, as Hand of the King after Robert had come to the throne. He promised that he would come back to the Eyrie for the birth of their child. Lysa had always wanted a baby, but she had wanted Petyr's baby, not Jon's. She often wondered if the child had been a boy or girl, because when the moon tea had flushed it out, it had been too early to tell. Lysa had locked herself away in her room for days after that, furious at her father and Petyr and herself.
But now all would be well. For she carried Jon's son and heir, and surely nothing bad could come from it. Lysa did not allow herself to get too excited for the sake of the child, but already she was thinking of names. Jon wanted to name him Robert, after the boy he had once raise who was now King. Lysa did not quite know yet, but she thought that Alester was a fine name. The more Lysa's stomach swelled, the more her anticipation and excitement swelled with it.
Jon returned to the Eyrie two weeks before Lysa was due to give birth. There was nothing ceremonious about the event, and when husband and wife were reunited, there was no more than pleasantries between them. Lysa didn't know Jon, not truly. He spent far too much time in King's Landing and too little with her. She knew Petyr well, for the two had grown up together. She missed him dearly.
When Lysa's water broke, she was immediately terrified. Women had died in childbirth before, what if she did? Her attendants soothed her, told her that it was nothing to be afraid of. She was young and full of life, certainly nothing bad could occur. The birth itself was a difficult thing, lasting more hours than Lysa cared to count. Jon remained in his study as though the mess of it all would perturb him, but Lysa knew her husband would come when she held their son in her arms.
"One last push," the maester instructed her, and Lysa cried out as she pushed with all her might – and then another's cries joined hers. Her baby. Her son. She flopped back against the pillows, red hair lank with sweat, her entire body aching. The maester cleaned the baby up and smiled down at Lady Arryn.
"Well done, my lady. You have given birth to a healthy baby girl."
Lysa's dreams were immediately shattered. A girl. A girl?! She had been so certain it was a boy she carried, so sure that she would give Jon the heir he so desperately needed. Her arms shaking, she received the baby from the maester. It was a tiny, squalling red thing. What need would she have of a girl? Lysa was, for perhaps the hundredth time in her life, writhing in bitter disappointment in herself. Why couldn't she have done anything right?
Jon entered the room and Lysa swallowed. Surely her husband would be just as grateful for a girl child. She smiled weakly and held the wailing baby up for his inspection.
"We have a daughter, my love."
Jon inclined his head, turned on his heel and exited the room without another word. Lysa held her baby close and cried, knowing that she had failed him. She inspected the girl in her arms, trailing her fingers over the baby's tuft of red hair. She would be a Tully in appearance. Lysa stroked her daughter's hair as tears leaked down her cheeks.
Lysa treasured the first few years of Tamara's life, although they were also fraught with trouble. She suffered a miscarriage, and Jon insisted that she and Tamara come to live with him in King's Landing when the child was three years old. The girl was a year older than Robert's son Joffrey, and it became clear that the King intended for the two children to become good friends. Yet as they grew older, Lysa grew to like Joffrey less as his behaviour became more intolerable, and Queen Cersei turned a blind eye to it.
Tamara was whole-heartedly a Tully, despite her Arryn name. Her hair was auburn like her mother's, her bright eyes the colour of the sky. She was an energetic child, who was more prone to tomboyish behaviour than Lysa would have liked. When the girl was four years old, Lysa fell pregnant again. This time, she did not state whether she thought the child to be a son, for she did not think she could bear to be wrong again. It didn't matter in any case – Lysa miscarried three months into the pregnancy, and the distance between her and her husband grew greater.
"I believe the King intends to betroth Tamara to Joffrey," Jon announced one night over a private dinner.
Lysa couldn't quite hide her revulsion. Six-year-old Joffrey had recently cut open a pregnant cat to see the kittens inside, an event which young Tamara had witnessed. The girl had been reduced to tears and Lysa could only hold her daughter close and stroke her hair, wishing that Jon was not so insistent upon their daughter spending time with such a monstrous child. She frowned and set down her knife and fork.
"Surely you won't allow that. You've seen how unkind the boy is, Jon."
"Nastiness is present in some children," Jon admitted, cutting up his steak, "Yet no doubt he will outgrow it. Tamara is already bigger than him, he does not attempt to bully her."
Lysa resumed eating in silence. Although Tamara was rarely a victim of Joffrey's abuse, there were other young children who often suffered from the spoilt prince's behaviour. Lysa knew that if Tamara married Joffrey, she would be Queen of Westeros…but what would be the price? She did not want her little girl, her only child, to be married to such a horrible boy. Even if Jon was right and it was too early to tell, Lysa did not trust the Lannisters.
It was through Lysa that Petyr became Master of Coin. He came to the capital often, and when he did, he and Lysa would have clandestine meetings, unknown to her husband. She was always careful, though. She did not want to make the same mistake as before, and as such, made certain that there was no chance of Petyr impregnating her. Lysa introduced Petyr to Tamara, who was more than happy to meet her mother's 'childhood friend'.
"She is much like Catelyn," Petyr once stated with a smile, although this caused Lysa to frown at her daughter being compared to her sister – her sister, who Petyr had once dearly loved. Now, Lysa was certain his affections had shifted to her, much to her delight. She had always known that he would come to love her at some point in his life.
When Tamara was nine years old, Lysa fell pregnant again. She feared miscarriage, but this pregnancy was almost as smooth as Tamara's. The young girl was progressing well in King's Landing. She was learning to play the fiddle and it was said that she often enjoyed dancing at large feasts, which Lysa made a point of not attending so that she could spend the night with Petyr instead.
Jon continued to insist that Robert wished to betroth Tamara and Joffrey, however Lysa protested that it would be unwise to do so while Tamara remained his sole heir. Lysa woke up to find her water broken at seven and a half months pregnant and she screamed, fearing another stillborn child. However, when Lysa gave birth, she was ecstatic to realise that she had produced the desired son. He was sickly and weak, but he was still Jon's heir. When her husband visited, he offered Lysa a rare smile and asked to hold the child.
They named him Robin.
Lysa was completely devoted to her son. Robin was a frail child and needed a lot of care, which she was more than happy to provide. However, as Lysa's attention was focused completely on her son, so her daughter became overshadowed by her decade-younger brother. Tamara grew quieter as her parents invested all of their time in her baby brother. She would often want to hold Robin herself, only to be chastised by an overprotective Lysa.
Yet none came after baby Robin. Lysa was pregnant three more times, only to suffer two miscarriages and another stillborn. Even as he grew older, Robin did not become a strong, healthy child as Tamara had. He constantly required the attention of their mother – and Tamara resigned herself to that fact. Yet she found herself lonely. Myrcella was several years younger than her, and she could not tolerate Joffrey's cruel behaviour.
It was the Kingslayer who bothered Lysa the most, although she would only admit that in private. Although Tamara had met Jaime Lannister briefly, it was only when she was thirteen years old that she became somewhat more familiar with him. He was her mother's age, a full seventeen years older than her. She often admired the shining armour of the Kingsguard from afar, the white cloak that swept close to his feet.
At thirteen, Tamara considered herself by far old enough to decide whether she wished to accompany her father Jon to feasts. Lysa disapproved of her daughter's decision, but then Tamara found her mother disapproved of most of the things she did. Tamara dressed in bright blue to match her eyes, examining her reflection in the mirror.
She had always been slender, but had recently flowered. This worried Lysa as it meant her daughter was now able to marry – and she fretted that Jon would see fit to have Tamara betrothed to Joffrey after all. Turning on her side and straightening her back, as Lysa always scolded her for not doing, Tamara was pleased to see that she was developing curves. It was nothing spectacular – a gentle swell of breasts, a slight widening of hips. Yet in her eyes, it meant that she was becoming a woman.
"You look lovely, sweetling." Lysa smiled and crossed over to sit her daughter down, braiding her hair with affectionate care. Tamara sat still and practically glowed. It was rare for her mother to show her such attention. She spent more time in the care of her septa than with her parents, so she relished every moment spent with her mother. "Now, you must remember your manners and courtesies at the feast. I don't want you spending too much time near Prince Joffrey."
"I won't, Mother," Tamara promised, "I like him little enough."
She immediately placed a hand over her mouth and flushed in mortification. It was too bold of her to share her opinions of the prince. Lysa merely smiled and gently caressed a stray strand of auburn hair behind her daughter's ear.
"There are few who truly enjoy his company, although it is foolish to say so in public."
"Of course, I would never," Tamara insisted, clambering to her feet. Robin's squalling alerted her to her time with her mother being over, as Lysa swept from the room to care for her younger child. Tamara sighed heavily, but remembered to hold herself upright and proud. High As Honour, those were her house's words, as Jon was constantly reminding her.
Sometimes, Tamara forgot how truly old her father was. While Lysa had only been seventeen, Jon had already been in his late fifties when she was born, old enough to be her grandfather in truth. He was frail much like Robin, although in quite a different sense. Jon stiffly took his position beside Robert, who was bellowing over everyone with the air of a man who already has wine pumping through his veins.
Tamara was a little uncertain of where she should sit. She glanced around the table for any familiar faces, but she did not want to sit beside Joffrey, who seemed to have a nasty habit of pinching her thigh as of late. However, she was saved when she met the green eyes of the Kingslayer and he beckoned. Like a puppet on strings, Tamara was drawn towards him.
"You look lost, little falcon." He jerked his head towards the empty seat beside him. "Do sit. Tamara, isn't it?"
"Yes, Ser Jaime," Tamara responded, gathering her skirts and taking a seat beside him. He was a very attractive man, with his family's golden hair, striking features and green eyes. Cut off from her brief examination when Jaime raised his eyebrows questioningly, Tamara instead turned her attention towards the wine jug, her cheeks burning.
"Would you like some?" Jaime inquired, noticing where her gaze was now directed.
"Yes please," Tamara nodded and held out her goblet as he poured. "I'm only allowed one cup at feasts, though."
Jaime chuckled at that, inspecting the auburn-haired girl. Jon Arryn's daughter seemed to carry nothing of his traits, be it physical or in terms of personality. However Arryn was a dry old man, so of that Jaime could not complain. The two did not speak again during the feast, aside from when Jaime excused himself to help escort a drunken Robert from the room. Soon after that, Tamara felt her eyes prickling with tiredness and excused herself from the table.
"Your father says Jaime Lannister spoke with you," Lysa snapped as soon as she entered the Tower of the Hand, exhausted. Her mother practically flew at her, all sharp eyes and questions. "What did he say? Why did you sit with him? You can't trust that man, Tamara. You know that he killed King Aerys."
"All he did was offer me wine," Tamara protested, undoing the braids with practised fingers.
Lysa glowered at her daughter. "You will not speak with him again, do you understand? If he tries to talk to you, make an excuse about practising your fiddle or your lessons. I do not want you near him or the Queen, they are nothing but trouble."
Tamara nodded sullenly, knowing her mother would hear about it if she did not heed her advice. So Tamara made a point of avoiding Jaime Lannister where she could, little knowing that fate worked in strange ways.