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My Only Vice Is Standing By Your Side

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Knighthood is a fantasy that Brienne had buried in the deepest recesses of her mind long ago. She’d learned quickly, and the hard way, that it was little more than a pipe dream for someone like her in this limited, patriarchal world. One does not need formalities and ceremony to espouse the moral code becoming of a knight, and Brienne had always taken solace in the knowledge that her highly principled life rivaled and surpassed the ethics and values of many a proper Westerosi knight.

For a long time, that was good enough.

For a long time, she was content.

Now, as she stands, eyes brimming with joyful tears, a euphoric vindication unlike anything she’d ever imagined sweeps through her, lighting her up from the inside. The final puzzle piece has slid into its rightful place, and she is a proper knight at last. Settling for anything less seems a faraway concept.

It was hardly a conventional ceremony, but she was hardly a conventional knight.

Now that it had happened, she can’t envision it happening any other way.

Tormund Giantsbane leads thunderous applause, blue eyes shining as he looks at her with pride, like she deserves this. She’s not used to being looked at in such a way, nor in the various other ways that he so frequently looks at her, but there’s something in this tender admiration that makes her heart swell. His attentions are not entirely unwelcome, though she must admit to preferring those of the man who had just bestowed her this great honor.

She shakes those thoughts from her head and glances around the fire, surprised to find that everyone’s expressions mirror Tormund’s. Many of them have seen her fight, have heard her speak, and they truly believe that she’s earned this. That she is worthy.

Scenes from her youth storm unbidden across her mind’s eye: the maesters’ patronizing confusion at her choices in studies, the septa’s piteous face when delicately explaining that she’d likely have difficulty finding traditional success in love and marriage, unlike the other ladies.

The naked disdain on her father’s face at her appearance and her interests.

Then there were the children. Girls and boys, countless mocking and tormenting faces, saying she’d never be beautiful, never be a real fighter, never be a lady, never be a what was she, anyway? Brienne the Beauty, spat with vitriol in her wake until she grew up and left that place, her home where she’d never quite belonged.

Tonight, she spits in the faces of all those who doubted her. Tonight, she belongs. Tonight, she is home.

Home. Her eyes find Ser Jaime’s, and the look upon his handsome face bowls her over. He’s gazing at her with pride, as though she’s made of stars. While Brienne has understood that his admiration goes far beyond her capabilities as a fighter for some time, beholding it at such proximity after so much time apart nearly takes her breath away.

Suddenly overwhelmed, she drains her cup and prays that no one can tell how her face prickles with the heat that is seeping through her entire being.

“Thank you,” she says, mildly horrified at the crack in her voice. She glances at Podrick. “I...I’ll return shortly, so we can prepare for battle.”

Podrick moves to stand, but she shakes her head. “Stay, drink. Enjoy yourself.”

Both Jaime’s and Tormund’s gazes penetrate her as she crosses the room, and she tries to avoid ascribing value to the shiver that dances up her spine at their combined intensity. While attention is something that she’s grown used to, like an unwelcome second skin, the attention she’s received from both of these men is a different thing entirely, something that she never quite believed she’d experience from one man, let alone two.

She doesn’t know how to handle it, and that uncertainty both angers and excites her.

The wind howls and groans against the castle walls as she makes her way through winding corridors. To her relief, she finds an unoccupied room, an abandoned fire dying in its massive hearth. She adds a log and stokes the embers back to life. With a sigh, she drags a chair over the copious furs on the floor and settles in to watch the flames flicker.

“May I join you?”

She turns, startled. She doesn’t know how long she’s been sitting here. “Ser Jaime.”

He steps into the room, a kind half-smile playing about his lips. “Ser Brienne.”

She returns his smile. “Thanks for that.”

Jaime pulls up a chair beside her. “It’s got a nice ring to it, don’t you think?”

“I do.” Despite her confusing sentiments towards Jaime, she expects to be more irritated by his presence. It doesn’t feel like a nuisance. It feels right, oddly comfortable. Inevitable.

They sit quietly for what seems like a small eternity. The thousand things that Jaime wants to say are simmering just below his surface, as disruptive as an overfilled cauldron reaching its boiling point, and Brienne pointedly avoids looking at his face.

Perhaps he can feel the same energy from her.

“If there’s something on your mind, I pray you speak it,” she says, unable to take it any longer.

Jaime looks her directly in the eye, like he was waiting for her to break the silence. “Alright.”

He kneels before her and bows his head. She raises an eyebrow and hopes that he can’t hear the way her heart beats like a war drum, piercing her breastplate.

“We might not be alive much longer, and I’d never forgive myself if I didn’t tell you this, so...I’ll just say it.” He lifts his chin; Brienne aches at the vulnerability etched plainly upon his features, indelible as ink on parchment. “I want to...I suppose I’d like to thank you. For everything. For back then, when we were prisoners. For earlier, when you stuck your neck out for me. For everything in between. You saved my life.”

He lets out a labored exhale. Brienne’s breath mirrors his. “You’ve saved it so many times and in so many ways, I…”

It’s a wild thing, almost incomprehensible, to watch a man like Ser Jaime Lannister grasp for the right thing to say. Possessed by something she has never known, she gently cups his face, swiping a thumb across his scruffy jaw to bring their gazes back together. “Please, continue.”

“My lady...Brienne. Ser Brienne.” He leans into her touch, and she nearly melts into her chair. “I don’t know where I’d be right now without you. I don’t know who I’d be. I only know who I am in this moment, and I know I would not be that man without you. I know that I care for you in a way that pierces my very soul, if I still have one, and ties it to yours.”

Brienne’s heart seizes as Jaime’s words sink in, warming her from the inside like the hearth fire. “Ser Jaime…”

“Jaime, just Jaime. Please.” His beard scratches against her palm. She barely suppresses a shudder. “You are the bravest, strongest person I have ever met.” He presses a dry kiss to the heel of her hand. “I admire you.” He turns her hand over and his lips find her knuckles. “I respect you.” He brushes his lips across the tips of her fingers and looks up at her through long eyelashes. The most beautiful man in all the Seven Kingdoms, humbled before her like a supplicant in a sept. “I adore you. I worship you. you.”

Her lips form around words she cannot find, stricken dumb with the sincerity of his confession. Nothing in Brienne’s life could have ever prepared her for this. Any other time, in any other context, she would be convinced that such a grand expression of love was a prank, concealing an insult like a sword.

Knowing all that she knows about Jaime, she is overcome with the truth of it all.

Jaime bows his head and rests her fingers against his forehead. “Would you permit me to worship at your feet, Brienne of Tarth?”

Without sparing another thought, she bends as forward as her armor permits. He rises on his knees so their lips can meet in a kiss so fiery, it nearly knocks Brienne over. Jaime’s desire is palpable as he cups her face, his tongue parting her lips as he moans into her mouth.

Brienne’s fingers shake and her heart races as they undress one another, sending plates and swords, vambraces and chainmail clattering to the floor. The winter roaring outside and the imminent battle for their lives seem far away as she strips Jaime out of his shirt. She pulls Jaime down onto sumptuous furs, trembling at the glorious feeling of his body against hers, wondering why it took them so long to get here.

He’s fucking beautiful, and Brienne doesn’t know if it’s in spite of or because of his imperfections, his scars, his missing limb. He slots himself between her parted thighs with ease, grinding his hard prick against her cunt, which drips and aches with her craving for him, body and soul.

“I’ve never had a man before,” she whispers as she digs her nails into his biceps.

Jaime halts his actions immediately. “If you don’t want to--”

Her sweaty fingers find his lips. “I do, though. I do want to. With you.”

Jaime’s eyes darken as he sucks her fingertips into his mouth. “I want whatever you want.”

Something in her chest opens wide and gives way to more of that warmth she always feels when she looks at him. She doesn’t know how to tell him what she wants, but she trusts him, she trusts this, and she wants to feel him before the night is up.

Before their time is up.

She nods, and he kisses her neck. Little jolts of pleasure spike in her gut as his lips travel down her body, stopping to lick and suck at her nipples, kiss and nibble at her low belly and inner thighs until she’s undulating against the furs, overwhelmed with new sensation, begging him wordlessly to touch her.

He puts his mouth on her, kissing her cunt like he kissed her mouth, and it’s a revelation. He’s reverent and soft, but not hesitant, parting her lips with his tongue and lapping at her most intimate area. He groans like he’s receiving as much pleasure as she is as he devours her. She can’t stop the moans and gasps that he pulls from her, a strange and lovely pressure coiling in her belly, building up like a battle inside her. She pulls his hair, and he slides his hands beneath her, lifting her hips to his mouth like she’s fine wine and he’s a man dying of thirst. The change in angle permits him better access, and Brienne’s entire world is turned on its head as her perspective narrows to the feeling of his tongue inside her, the heat of his left hand and the rigid chill of his right.

“Jaime.” She tries to shut her thighs against a sudden onslaught of bliss. Her eyelids flutter shut and she sighs his name again, feeling all the seven heaven and hells radiate through her body from his mouth as she cries and convulses, like she’s possessed. Jaime works her through it, unrelenting until she pushes his head away to gasp for air.

He looks like he means to say something, but Brienne rolls him on his back and straddles his lap with a breathless laugh. “That was…”

He licks his lips and smiles. “It was, truly.”

“I want you inside me now,” she murmurs, rubbing her arousal against his erection.

“You’re sure?”

Brienne seals her consent with a kiss, blushing as she tastes herself on his tongue. He spits in his hand and she raises her hips so he can stroke himself, then he rocks with her, against her, and with little preamble, she slowly sinks down on him.

The pressure is strange but exquisite, and entirely unexpected. She can’t stop the moan that escapes her lips as he fills her, inch by aching inch, his face a strained mix of awe and ecstasy. When he’s all the way inside her, she bucks her hips experimentally, drawing a lovely choked groan from his swollen lips. She bites her lip and repeats the motion, gorgeous heat pooling behind her navel as he rubs against a spot deep inside her.

“Do you like it?” Jaime’s hands are on her hips, gently guiding her as she undulates on top of him. He looks incredible beneath her, like he’s meant to be there, and her heart skips a beat at the thought of all the lost time between them.

“Yes, I like it,” she whispers. He surges up on his elbows and their mouths mash together, and it’s more feral than their other kisses, teeth and tongues clashing like steel against steel. She pins him down and picks up her pace, sweating as she locks eyes with him, his panting breath music to her ears. He bites his lip, challenge twinkling in his eyes as his hand snakes between her thighs, rubbing at that sweet spot above her opening until she lets out a cry and gushes around him. It feels good, so good, she pulls his hand off and drags it up her body, allowing him to squeeze her breast before sucking his fingers into her mouth.

He grits his teeth, all his steadfast reserve and powerful resistance melting like steel in the forge as he thrusts up into her and returns his hand between her thighs. The delicious tension that built within her when Jaime’s mouth was on her returns, maddening and stronger than before, and she’s ascending towards that same hedonistic peak, Jaime’s name falling from her lips. He’s up on his elbows, lips parted, wide eyes on her, and everything is falling away around her and she lets out a cry when--

A noise in the doorway pulls her from her orgasmic haze, and she gasps at the sight of Tormund standing in the doorway, drinking liberally from his horn, eyes blazing as he stares at them.

Instead of feeling the expected shame or fear at the sudden sight of him, inexplicably, her eyes roll back in her head and she comes, hard. Jaime sits up, hands sliding up her back, lips on her neck as he rocks her through deep, full-body shudders.

“Well, well, well.” Tormund steps in, closing the door behind him. “What have we here?”

Jaime’s head turns whiplash-fast, and Brienne thinks he’s trying to position his body in such a way as to preserve her modesty. She couldn’t care less at the moment, near dumb in the radiant aftermath of her pleasure.

Jaime’s saying something to Tormund, and Brienne nuzzles her nose against his sweaty hairline. He’s still hard inside her, and she loves it, so she squeezes around him, causing him to stutter and turn to her.

“Well?” Tormund is standing there, huge and handsome and hungry. Brienne has no idea what he’s just said, so she looks at Jaime.

“Are you...would you like him to, er, join us?” There’s something in Jaime’s eyes that Brienne can’t quite read, but it isn’t disgust or anger or jealousy. Oddly enough, she doesn’t feel any of those things, either. In fact, now that she knows how it feels to be with Jaime, physically and spiritually, the idea of Tormund joining them

She strokes Jaime’s hair behind his ear and kisses him, long and shameless. “I don’t mind if you don’t mind.”

Tormund raises his hands and a thick eyebrow. “As long as you’re sure. I wouldn’t much care to be where I am not wanted.”

Jaime shakes his head and shrugs. “Seven bloody hells, why not.”

With a grin, Tormund makes quick work of his furs and armor and sinks to his knees, looking from Jaime to Brienne in awe. Jaime lies back, still hard inside Brienne, who stares directly into Tormund’s ice blue eyes and rocks her hips forward. He lets out an incredulous chuckle and leans forward to plant a tentative, chaste kiss on her lips. He’s gentler than she expected; his bushy beard scratches pleasantly against her skin. He tastes like ale and smoke.

Heat swells in Brienne’s belly when he pulls away with a lick of his lips, then bends to kiss Jaime. Even more surprising is the way Jaime’s prick jumps inside her, and she bites her lip as Jaime leans into their new partner’s mouth.

“Two knights at the same time.” He grins, slowly unlacing his breeches. “Now there’s a fantasy come to life.”

“Well, were the circumstances any different…” Brienne and Jaime exchange a look, and she huffs out a laugh. “Let’s just say you’re a very lucky man.”

“That I am.” There’s a seriousness in his eyes that she chooses to ignore, despite the molten feeling that it elicits deep in her gut. Together, they make quick work of Tormund’s smallclothes, and after a few more heated kisses, Brienne finds herself on all fours.

There’s a massive weight at her back, and large, rough hands cupping her rear. Her thighs are sticky, cunt wet and open as Jaime settles in front of her for a deep kiss. She lets out a shaky exhale and bites her lip at the delirious thought of having two men inside her in the same night.

“May I?” Tormund’s voice is even gruffer that usual, eyes predatory.

Jaime’s lips are at her neck, his hand between her thighs. She shudders against his fingers, and nods. Tormund’s fingers find Jaime’s, and as Jaime works her outside, Tormund’s thick fingers slide inside of her.

“Lovely,” he murmurs behind her, and Brienne pours her groan into Jaime’s mouth.

“So beautiful,” says Jaime, just for her. Her lips part; she wants to tell him she loves him, she loves him so much, but Tormund’s thick cock is pushing inside of her. He’s bigger than Jaime, and for a moment, she tenses with apprehension, but then Jaime is kissing her again and working those nimble fingers against her spot, then lower, around where Tormund is inside her, and her fear melts away.

Tormund gives her arse a slap, eliciting a pulse between her thighs. He does it again, and she moans. He’s fucking her at a nearly glacial pace, pulling all the way out to tease just at her entrance before sliding all the way back in.

“Jaime,” she murmurs, grasping at his thigh, pleasure flooding her with confidence. “Put...will you put your cock in my mouth.”

Jaime stands on his knees to eagerly comply. She can’t quite get all of him into her mouth, but it seems to be enough, because he groans. It’s a strange sensation, to be so full, pleasuring both men as they pleasure her. She moans and pushes her hips back against Tormund.

“Fucking incredible,” he growls behind her, blunt nails digging into her flesh as he begins to fuck her in earnest. “So fucking tight.”

Brienne groans around Jaime’s prick and stares up at him, nearly melting at the look of pure lust on his face, like he’s trying to hold back. Another wave of bliss mounts steadily inside her as the sinful rub of Tormund’s cock drives her closer to the crest with every luxurious thrust.

Jaime cups her jaw and she looks up, and the moment her eyes meet his besotted gaze, his cock falls from her mouth and she releases with a broken cry, clenching and shuddering until stars burst behind her eyes.

“Gods,” she murmurs as Tormund eases out of her. She lies, panting, on the furs as Jaime’s lips and tongue lavish her on one side, Tormund’s on the other, two sets of massive hands roaming her body, gentling her in her afterglow. She surrenders to their caresses, to the weight of their bodies against her, her tethers to the present.

“Good?” Jaime’s voice is barely a whisper as Tormund dips his head between her thighs. Brienne can only nod as Jaime rolls her onto her side and lifts her leg and guides himself back inside her. Tormund moves so he can lick at her cunt and Jaime’s cock as it slides in and out of her. Cries are falling with abandon from her lips, her entire body vibrating at the dual stimulations, heart racing. Jaime’s fingers interlace with hers, and she cranes her neck to kiss him deeply.

“I love you,” he whispers against her ear. Her fingers tighten around his as her orgasm uncoils in her gut, and she’s about to chalk the utterance up to lust-induced delirium, but he thrusts deep and says again, a bit louder, “I love you.”

Her only response is a moan as she comes again on Tormund’s face and Jaime’s cock, and a moment later, Jaime makes a punched-out noise and stills, filling her with his release. He pulls out slowly, and maneuvers her onto her back. Tormund laps up the seed dripping from her eagerly, sucking it out like it’s ambrosia, and Brienne’s face burns.

“I love you too,” she murmurs against Jaime, smiling at the truth in her words, grinning at the patent absurdity of the situation. Tormund is happy to stay occupied between Brienne’s thighs as Jaime returns her grin, laughing a little as he swipes an errant strand of blonde from her forehead.

Tormund relents with a loud exhale, beard and lips shiny with fluids as he plants a kiss on Brienne’s inner thigh. “You lot have impressive stamina,” he says with a grin. “Knights.”

“Not to break your newfound respect for us, but I could...use a moment,” admits Brienne as she ruffles Tormund’s hair affectionately, noticing that he’s still hard.

Not missing a beat, Tormund fixes Jaime with a filthy look. “So, Kingslayer. You ever had that fancy arse of yours fucked by a man?”

Jaime snorts, incredulous. “Er, no.”

Tormund raises an eyebrow. “Would you like to?”

Mildly alarmed, Jaime looks between Tormund and Brienne. Blush blooms high on Brienne’s face as she thinks of the two of them together, their bodies entwined as hers had been with the both of them.

“It’s just a suggestion,” says Tormund, reaching over to grab his horn of ale. He downs the contents and rakes his eyes over Jaime’s body. “Something to pass the time while we’re waiting for Ser Brienne to recover.”

Brienne barks out a laugh, and Jaime looks at her with such fondness that her stomach flips over. She ducks her head and fiddles with some matted fur beneath her. “If it’s something you’d both like...why not?”

“Why not indeed.” Jaime looks Tormund up and down, and Brienne sees the exact moment that he caves. She bites back another bewildered chuckle at the thought of the first time she’d met him--that Jaime Lannister would have laughed in her face if she’d told him what this Jaime Lannister was about to agree to. “Well, since I suppose we'll all be dead come morning, what’s the harm in giving it a go?”

“That’s the spirit,” laughs Tormund, glancing at Brienne before descending upon Jaime.

Brienne watches, rapt, as he cautiously cages Jaime’s body with his own massive form, like he’s afraid he might be met with vehement opposition. A rush of fondness overwhelms her; despite his great size and rough demeanor, he is kind and caring in bed. Jaime’s still tense, he keeps looking at Brienne, so she squeezes his hand reassuringly.

Tormund works his way down Jaime’s body like he’s a puzzle to be solved, diligent and slow, kissing and licking until he reaches his destination. He takes Jaime into his mouth, and Jaime groans.

It’s so surreal, Brienne can’t help but stare. Tormund’s done this before, likely many times, and Jaime’s shaking by the time he pulls off. He hitches one of Jaime’s legs over his shoulders and angles his hips up, much like what Jaime had done to her earlier, and Jaime’s eyes go wide as Tormund’s head dips lower.

“Gods,” he whispers brokenly, and Brienne kisses the whine from his lips. Emboldened, she makes her way down Jaime’s body and experimentally sucks him into her mouth. He bucks his hips and cries out, and Brienne doubles her efforts. She’s already wet and ready again, intoxicated by the sweet sounds of Jaime’s arousal. When she pulls off, she sees that Tormund’s worked two of his massive fingers inside of Jaime, and Jaime’s got a forearm over his eyes, sweaty chest heaving.

Tormund cocks a conspiratorial eyebrow at Brienne. “Spit, love.”

It takes her a moment to understand what he’s asking. With a deep blush high on her cheeks, she pushes a copious amount of drool between her lips that falls onto Jaime’s sack and runs down to Tormund’s fingers. He grins and kisses her before standing up on his knees and gesturing to his cock. “Suck, love.”

She’d be indignant if she weren’t so painfully aroused and curious to see what happens next, so she obeys. She chokes a bit, drools all over him, eyes rolling back in her head as she lets him use her mouth.

He gently eases her off and grabs his prick, waggling it at Jaime. “You ready for this?”

Jaime breathes a little laugh. “Do your worst.”

Brienne can feel her heartbeat between her legs as she watches Tormund spread Jaime’s thighs and spit on him once more. He pushes just the tiniest bit of his massive prick in before pulling out, teasing it just back in.

“Fuck.” Jaime’s head is thrown back, eyes squeezed shut. Brienne kisses his forehead, his lips, and runs her hands over his body, taking his length into her hand and stroking. He looks hazily into her eyes as she works.

“Sit on my face,” he breathes.

She pulls a face. “What? How can...won’t I...won’t I break you?”

Tormund thrusts so hard Jaime’s entire body moves and he grabs her forearm hard enough to bruise. “You won’t break him, love. I might, though, at this rate.”

Jaime glares at him, but it’s all show. “I’d like to see you try.”

Tormund gives him a wild smile and pushes his legs open wider, stroking in deep before grinding his hips slowly. “You like being put in your place, don’t you?”

Jaime lets out a cry, and Brienne sees fluid dripping from his prick onto his taut abdomen. She straddles his face, cautious at first, worried about hurting him, but then Jaime’s pulling her hips down and licking into her with such gusto that all concerns fly from her mind.

They move together fluidly, their pace somehow both languid and frantic in its own right. Perhaps it’s the looming notion that this may very well be their last night on earth, or the knighting ceremony earlier, but Brienne has never felt more right. She allows herself to feel Jaime, to enjoy his mouth on her as Tormund fucks him, leaning over his body to give her long, hot kisses. She feels no shame, no injustice, only the desire to experience pleasure, both her own and that of her lovely partners.

After a time, Tormund pulls out and helps Brienne off of a dazed Jaime. He repositions her knight on all-fours, and gestures to the furs beneath him. Brienne wriggles underneath, clamping her thighs around Jaime’s waist and letting out a moan as she feels him enter her once more.

“Oh, gods,” groans Jaime, pushing so deep inside her that she whimpers. Tormund fucks him from behind as he fucks her, and she cries out as he all but collapses on her, his cock grinding beautifully against that swollen, wonderful spot inside her. Tormund falls forward, hands on either side of Brienne’s face, belly flush against Jaime’s back as he rolls his hips urgently. He buries his face in Jaime’s neck and bites, hard, before leaning down and kissing Brienne.

Jaime is letting out gorgeous little unrestrained noises Brienne has never dreamed hearing from him, eyes screwed shut, body shaking. He’s a vision, utterly lost in pleasure, and Brienne wonders when the last time was that someone had catered to or cared for him. She bites down where Tormund had bitten, and Tormund shifts slightly with a grunt, pulling Jaime’s hips up and thrusting deep.

Jaime’s eyes fly open, locking on Brienne’s, and he whispers, “seven hells,” and shudders violently, letting out a ragged cry as he comes deep inside Brienne. Drool catches on his swollen bottom lip as Tormund fucks him through it, growling as he comes so copiously that his seed drips out of Jaime and trickles onto Brienne.

Once they disentangle themselves, Jaime lifts one of Brienne’s legs over his shoulder, and Tormund slides beside him to do the same to her other leg. Their mouths meet on her cunt, lapping at her oversensitive, swollen entrance, licking and probing in tandem. It’s shockingly erotic, and Brienne can’t contain her noises of flagrant bliss as she watches them work, the sight and sensation of it all sending her hurtling over the edge once more, tremors wracking her body and sweat dripping as she comes with a shriek.

The room fills with the sound of panting breaths as they collapse together on the furs, drenched in sweat, chests heaving. Tormund’s hand rests gently on Brienne’s thigh as Jaime holds her to his chest, and she feels a satisfaction so deep in her bones, she wonders if it’s become a permanent part of her, or if it will fade into the night.

The endless night, the inevitability of the war that awaits them.

Brienne presses her nose to Jaime’s skin and squeezes her eyes shut.

“All of your seven hells, that was fantastic.” Tormund rolls onto his side and caresses Brienne’s belly. “I don’t know about you lot, but I’ll be thinking about that for a long fucking time.”

Jaime’s stomach jiggles with his barely audible chuckle, and Brienne watches as Tormund stands and dresses, his bright ginger hair slightly more askew than usual, his beard matted with the evidence of their tryst. This evening had certainly taken several unexpected turns. She blushes deeply.

Tormund leans down and plants a chaste kiss on both of their lips, lingering on Brienne’s, before shaking his empty horn pointedly. “Seems that I’m out of ale, so I’ll be leavin’ you to it.”

“See you soon,” says Brienne, because it’s true, and because she doesn’t know what else to say.

He nods and flashes a wicked grin. “Thank you for your most honorable and memorable services to your Wildling ally this evening, Sers.”

Brienne turns her face into Jaime’s chest with a groan and relishes in the feeling of another laugh rolling through him. When they’re alone, Jaime tips her chin up and smiles down at her.

“I hope you enjoyed that.” The line between his brows deepens. “Did you?”

“I thought I made it quite obvious that I did, but since I didn’t...” She props herself up on an elbow, cherishing the deep, pleasant ache between her thighs, still trying to wrap her mind around the fact that all of the feelings that she’d experienced tonight were real, that it is possible to feel this good in her body. That it is possible to feel this way for someone who she knows reciprocates wholeheartedly. “Yes, I enjoyed that very much.”

“Good. As did I.” He kisses her again, and Brienne returns his passion readily. She’s never been one for true religious devotion, but she hopes to any gods who have not abandoned them that there will be more time for this, more time for them.

“Jaime--” Brienne is pulled from warm eyes and sweet thoughts by the dreaded sound of the horn. Her blood freezes, the bone-deep comfort of the afterglow evaporating like mist on a lake.

Her fear is mirrored in Jaime’s eyes as they help one another to their feet and hurriedly get dressed, Brienne’s heart cracking at the sounds of men shouting and boots against stone, their reality drawing closer.

It feels like someone else’s hands are helping Jaime with his cloak, that someone else is reaching for her sword, and Brienne’s nearly sick with the thought of going into battle with him and coming out on the other side alone. She can’t lose him. She won’t lose him. A vengeful fire blazes in her gut as she goes to open the door, ready to fight, but a hand on her elbow stays her.

“Brienne. Look at me.”

A long breath escapes her lips. She looks at him.

With a look in his eyes that says more than words ever could, Jaime draws his sword. “I am yours to command, now and always, and I will follow you to the ends of this earth, and the next, if you’ll have me.”

Her hands find his face in a mournful caress. “I would be honored to fight beside you, now and always.”

His lips quirk up in a half-smile as the noises of war grow louder and more urgent. “Lead the way, Ser Brienne.”

The kiss they share before battle binds their souls inextricably.