The Hound chuckled condescendingly, mumbling something about birds and songs before taking another swig of the sour smelling wine that he kept at his hip. Sansa wrinkled her nose at the thought of his stench - sweat and wine, she was disinclined to both - but kept her mouth shut. Let him think what he wants about me. It is true that The Hound had somewhat awoken Sansa to her bird-like ways, but his constant and repetitive mocking frustrated her immensely.
"Yeah, that's right; Purse your lips, seal them shut, keep your pretty mouth closed. That's what they teach you." His voice was slightly more slurred than usual, and the intervals between sips became shorter and shorter.
Sansa glared at him, her eyes baring into his face. That face full of hatred and apathy. She was no longer afraid of looking at him, not really. He may be ruthless but in all her time at Kings Landing, she had never had any real reason to fear him. Still she said nothing and instead gazed nonchalantly in the other direction.
Sandor, pleased with himself, shook his head and scoffed at Sansa, who pretended not to notice. There was a moments silence and, though refusing to look back, she could feel his gaze upon her.
"Does the pretty bird have nothing to say this time?" He finally spoke. "No pretty words to recite, no 'sers' or 'pardons'?"
Sansa was boiling on the inside, she clenched her fists and her eyes burnt brightly like her fiery hair.
"Tell me a story," He continued "Of Knights and damsels in distress. I want to hear it – what goes on in that foolish little mind of yours." He took another swig. "No? What happened to all those sweet words and dainty glances?"
"You think I have a choice?" Sansa blurted out unexpectedly, almost cutting him off before he could finish. "You speak to me as though I am a child! Well I am not, not anymore. People grow up, you know. Of course I was foolish, of course I was naïve, but things have changed and so have I. I don't enjoy being the Lannister's show pony, I just have to. One minute you're telling me to do as I'm told and to be what they want me to be in order to save myself some pain, yet you mock me at every moment you can for behaving the way I do." There was a catch in her throat. "I know I must seem a fool and I do not deny that I can be, however the truth is that you do not know me."
There were a million things Sandor could have retaliated with, but he decided to let her have this one. The Hound did his best to suppress the left corner of his mouth from revealing his delight in seeing Sansa stand up and forget her manners. Finally she had let go.
Sandor thought of all the occasions her fiery side had slipped out when perhaps it shouldn't have, leaving her with bruises and scars. He thought about the pain and loss she had been put through and the way he had told her not to let her fury define her actions in Kings Landing. Nevertheless, he couldn't deny the pleasure he experienced in seeing her step out of her usual self for a few fleeting moments. He had his reasons though, for mocking her and giving her the advice he did. She would be wise to co-operate with the Lannisters and do as she's bid, she didn't deserve any pain, and she had already received more than enough.
If he was to be painfully honest with himself, he hated to see her hurt. She was irritatingly pure of heart and mind - which amazed him. How could someone be so foolish as her? Calling him a Ser? In their world of iron, there would always be blood, but she would still indulge is pleasantries and courtesies as if they were worth anything. Sandor so desperately wanted Sansa to grow up. He wanted her to accept the world for what it was and be smart about how she survived in it, he knew she could, she'd seen her father's iron fate and her own battered face in the mirror. These were indicative enough of the true brutality of the world. Yet there was something undeniably perfect about her innocence. She was the perfect princess and as much as Sandor was fond of her tough side and shaking her out of her fairy tale, he so wanted to protect the lovely bird as she was.
Author's note: Thank you so much for reading this! Thoughts in the review section would be immensely appreciated, including negative or constructive criticism as I am hoping to improve my writing. Thanks!