Sansa never thought she’d be here again. Of course, she’d known she would be in the Stark house. But she hadn’t expected to find herself alone in the mostly forgotten attic, a small bed tucked away in one corner (for when the kids had gotten ideas about scaring themselves by sleeping up in the dark, secluded space) a dim lamp across from it, painting the room an eerie yellow, the tiny window that looked out on the backyard.
She had come up over an hour ago, sitting on the hardwood floor and hoping no one would miss her. She eyed the old boxes gathering dust, but Sansa didn’t dare go near them. An old record player stood by a full-length mirror, and Sansa studiously avoided her reflection, remembering the times in the past she would come up here to dance, to practice and teach her siblings. It all felt far away now. Some other wisps of memory played in the corners of her mind, seeking her attention, but she ignored them.
Sansa didn’t come here to reminisce, she just wanted to hide from everyone. She didn’t want to be surrounded by family and other mourners, listen to their stories of her father, or watch her mother be led around by Robb, as if she’d lost the ability to walk on her own.
Her father was dead. He wasn’t coming back. Nothing seemed to matter anymore.
Then she heard it, someone climbing the ladder. Sansa sucked in a breath of dread. Soon, Jon appeared, black suit rumpled, hair tied back, one hand on the top rung like he was ready to leave should she ask.
“Hey,” Jon said hoarsely. “I was wondering where you got off to.”
Sansa’s shoulders slumped in relief. It was just Jon. He may only be her half-brother, but at least she never felt like she had to pretend with him.
“May I?” he asked with a raised brow.
She nodded and Jon climbed the rest of the way into the attic, pulling up the ladder with him, closing them off from the rest of the house.
Sansa only then noticed the bottle of whiskey he was holding absentmindedly in his other hand. He turned around looking back at her as he moved to sit across from her, sighing tiredly.
For a few moments they sat in silence, which was fine. It wasn’t awkward but comfortable.
Jon’s dark gray eyes met hers. “Want any?” he gestured to the whiskey.
She nodded and reached for the bottle. Jon’s eyes flitted to where their hands touched before she pulled away, taking a drink and grimacing at the burn down her throat.
Jon chuckled. “Still a lightweight,” he said.
Sansa shot him a mock glare which only made him smile lightly before his face grew a bit more melancholy, the same kind of melancholy she was feeling. Sansa pushed the bottle across the hardwood floor back to him and Jon took another drink himself.
“So where’s Waymar?” Jon asked curiously.
“We broke up,” Sansa said, hugging her knees to her chest and smoothing the lines of her black skirt so it didn’t ride up at the motion.
Jon’s brow furrowed. “I didn’t know. When?”
Sansa waved a hand dismissively. “A month ago, I think.” It didn’t matter to her. At least not anymore. “Where’s Ygritte?”
“That’s been over for a few months.”
She realized how long they must have gone without talking. A few months? Now that she thought about it, she felt bad. They weren’t necessarily the closest, but they got along fine. In times like this, Jon was always such a steady presence, and he was comforting to her. But it shouldn’t take bad times for them to be around each other. Sansa resolved to put in more of an effort.
“Are you sad about the breakup?” she asked, though why she was asking, Sansa wasn’t sure. Likely to further distract herself.
Jon shook his head. “No. It’s not like I loved her, you know?”
Sansa hadn’t known that, but she nodded anyway.
“It’s not important,” Jon said. This she knew exactly, since it was how she felt about Waymar. Petty details of her love life meant nothing in comparison to the hole her father abruptly left behind.
“How are you holding up?” he asked softly, as if hearing her train of thought.
She shrugged, the movement feeling strange on her shoulders. Her body was looser, warmer, from the bit of whiskey. Lightweight, indeed. “I have no idea, really,” Sansa admitted.
Jon nodded like he understood. “Same,” he said, voice rough. He pinched the bridge of his nose. “I just couldn’t, with…” he waved an arm toward the trap door leading to the rest of the house.
“Yeah, me too,” she said, her voice thick. “So how goes it down there?”
Jon shook his head. “Your aunt Lysa can’t stop asking what The Honorable Ned left his beloved nephew Robin Arryn.”
“You’re kidding,” Sansa said, yet she knew he was not. That it was perfectly in line with her aunt.
Jon gave a bitter sort of laugh. “I thought Arya was going to shank her or something to get her away from your poor mother.”
Sansa smiled sadly. That certainly sounded like her sister, too. But she sobered at the thought of the next few days. “The reading of the will is going to be a nightmare.”
“Yup,” Jon agreed, staring off into the distance.
Before she could give into the ever-hovering despair, Sansa switched topics. “Will you be staying long?” she asked. Jon had lived further North for a few years now, even after finishing his service with the Night’s Watch.
Jon scrubbed a hand down his face. “I’m moving back, actually.”
Sansa’s eyebrows rose in surprise. “Really?”
Jon nodded before taking another sip of whiskey. “You remember the center I worked at, for vets?”
Sansa nodded. Jon was a very giving sort of person, and once his service was finished, he went to work for a nonprofit that helped veterans readjust to life outside the military, find jobs, get mental healthcare, that sort of thing.
“My old boss Mormont retired. This total prick I knew from the Watch, Thorne, is taking over. I gave my two weeks’ notice just a day before—” Jon cut off rather abruptly. She instantly knew what he meant.
Before father died.
Sansa rubbed the inside of her right wrist with her left thumb, a self-soothing habit of hers. Jon watched the motion before looking back to her face. This time when her eyes met his she took a deep, shuddering breath, squeezing her eyes shut, knowing if she looked anymore at his gentle concerned gaze, she would lose it and start crying.
Wordlessly, Jon moved to sit next to her and put his arm around her, Sansa’s head automatically falling to his shoulder. “I don’t want to…” she couldn’t finish the sentence.
Remember anything existed outside of this abandoned attic?
“I know,” Jon said, soft and wise.
Sansa shook her head and looked up at him. “How do you always know?”
Because he always did. It was almost frightening, the way he seemed to read her sometimes.
Jon shrugged, but his eyes were warm, and a small smile played at his lips. “I know you,” he said plainly.
Something about his words or the way he said them threw her off-kilter.
“I don’t—know me, that is,” Sansa said.
A sound murmured in his throat like regret. Or wistfulness? “That’s alright, Sansa,” he said. Jon wrapped his arm around her waist comfortingly and pulled her closer.
“What will you do? Now that you’re leaving the center?”
“I’m not sure yet,” Jon sighed. “Maybe go into construction, like I always thought I would.”
“Well,” Sansa said, straightening her posture to meet his eyes, “I’m sure you’ll do great with whatever you decide.”
His smile was crooked. “You’re my cheerleader huh?”
“Whatever you need.”
The words fell carelessly from her lips, and she hadn’t expected Jon to look away from her, as if in embarrassment. She wasn’t sure she understood why.
Sansa wanted to fill in the silence that truly did feel thick and a bit awkward now. “I wonder if mother will want to sell the house.”
Jon looked over at her again. “She wouldn’t do that without talking to you kids first.”
Sansa tilted her head at him. “And you too, Jon. You’re just as much father’s son.”
Jon’s elbow met his bent knee, resting his forehead in his palm. “That’s the thing though, your mother shouldn’t have to after the grief I’ve given her.”
“You have done no such thing,” Sansa said adamantly, grabbing his hand in her own. His skin was warm, rough and calloused, familiar. Their family circumstances were a bit strange; she could acknowledge that much. Her mother and father had a separation a few years after Robb’s birth, and though they were still married, during that separation her father had taken up with another woman, Lyanna Snow, resulting in Jon. Her mother had not been happy about it, but she had dated around a little after Robb started school and she had more time to herself. Ultimately, Catelyn couldn’t hold it against Ned, and certainly not Jon, an innocent in all the turmoil. And so, her parents had reconciled and when Jon was almost two, Sansa had been conceived.
Catelyn had welcomed Jon into their family and into their home full time when Lyanna died in a car accident. Yet, Jon never seemed to shake the feeling he was an interloper.
“I only meant…”
“I know very well what you meant Jon, and I won’t hear of such nonsense, not when—”
And she’d stopped herself, just as Jon had, suddenly feeling foolish.
Not when father has died.
She hadn’t meant to be harsh. “I’m sorry,” Sansa said hastily, touching his shoulder.
Jon squeezed her hand reassuringly. “Don’t be. I’m the one who’s sorry, Sans.”
“You have nothing to apologize for,” Sansa echoed the sentiment back to him.
“We’re quite a pair, aren’t we?” He gave her a wry grin. “The ones who apologize too much,” Jon said.
“And then apologize for apologizing all the time,” Sansa agreed. They looked at one another and laughed before falling against each other.
Jon traced long circles on Sansa’s back, and she felt herself melting into his calming touch. Eventually he spoke again. “You think we should be getting back?” he murmured against her hair.
Sansa sighed, exhausted at the mere thought. “I know it’s wrong to leave it to everyone else. But I just don’t want to,” she admitted, feeling selfish, but the emptiness in the wake of their loss made it hard to care.
“Then we won’t,” Jon said simply.
For awhile they sat just like that. Sansa wasn’t sure how much time had passed, though she was certain some of the guests were leaving.
Jon reached for the whiskey and they passed it back and forth, not enough to get truly sloshed but enough that a matching pleasant buzz hummed in their blood.
After a while, Jon took the coat of his suit off and pulled his hair out from its tie. He’d always had the prettiest curls, Sansa thought as she looked at him. She’d been jealous of them in her teen years.
They were getting more relaxed, and she wondered if anyone would come looking for them. Sansa hoped not. Sitting there with Jon, she felt the least like she wanted to die along with her father since she found out about the heart attack. It was strange, really, but it was almost as if Sansa could forget just how important Jon was to her, just how much he gave her a sense of peace, until they were in the same room once more and everything could fall away.
“Do you remember you trying to teach me to dance up here?” Jon asked with a nostalgic grin, interrupting her musings.
Sansa felt light, but strangely embarrassed at the way Jon’s cheeks were flushed. “How could I forget you constantly stepping on my toes?”
Jon huffed. “You wound me, my lady,” he said.
Sansa laughed, still surprised at her ability to do so. “No, you weren’t that bad,” she said. Without thinking, she reached forward and touched his hair, soothingly pushing it back from his face.
Jon’s eyes were heavy with some emotion she couldn’t read, and she watched his throat bob. “Is that all you remember?” he asked, voice dropping as his eyes studied her face intently.
Sansa looked at him in confusion. “What do you mean?”
Jon didn’t respond. He just kept looking at her, like he knew they both knew, only Sansa didn’t.
Jon let out a long breath before leaning forward, his hand going to the nape of her neck and touching his forehead to hers, eyes closing.
She felt out of control suddenly. A wild feeling and something nagged at her insides, though she couldn’t identify what it was brewing now between them.
“I’m tired of fighting, Sansa,” Jon said, sounding truly defeated.
Sansa looked at him and he opened his eyes again and then—
His lips were on hers, bruisingly so.
And somehow, Sansa kissed him back like it was the most natural thing in the world for her half-brother’s lips to be on hers. Like she’d been waiting for him to do it.
And she remembered.
Jon’s lips were on hers, his arms wrapping around her, pulling her closer and she remembered everything. Wayward glances, longing looks, lingering hugs, held hands, innocent and yet, not, at the same time. Never did they speak it. Never did they label it as it stayed within those boundaries. Now, though, his body was stronger, he was more experienced. He slipped his tongue into her mouth and they moaned together. Sansa climbed into his lap. Jon’s hands seemed to be everywhere on her all at once, she grabbed his hair for leverage, causing him to groan into her mouth.
“Jon,” she whimpered.
Suddenly Jon was standing, lifting her effortlessly, squeezing her ass in his hands and carrying her over to the bed.
This is wrong, some voice inside hissed. But did it matter anymore? Sansa felt that wildness building up in her again. It was all happening so fast. There was something uninhibited about her now—at the end of everything she had once known, shattered when she received that fateful phone call. Did anything matter anymore?
No, she thought. It didn’t matter to her or to Jon, if the way he pushed her onto the bed and shoved her skirt upward, opening her legs was any indication.
“I want you,” Jon said gruffly.
“Yes,” she told him. Yes, because by the gods, she needed him now.
As he tore her panties away and hastily pulled at his trousers, Sansa pulled her top off, unsnapping her bra, tossing it carelessly aside. Jon stared down in awe at her and groaned before leaning over and sucking one breast into his mouth, fingers playing at the nipple of the other.
“Jon,” she whined in impatience, rolling her hips up into his, feeling his hard length.
Jon moaned and touched her, mouth popping off her breast as he looked at her, eyes widening with surprise. “You’re so wet,” he said in delight and astonishment as he explored her core with nimble fingers.
“For you, Jon, please,” Sansa said. What had become of her, begging her brother to fuck her in her family’s house after her dad’s funeral?
Jon nodded fervently and shoved his pants and boxers down just enough to free his hard, throbbing cock. She pulled her skirts up higher and Jon pushed inside of her.
“Sansa,” Jon sounded pained, breathless, but the way his eyes closed she knew he was only feeling pleasure.
He felt so good inside her. Sansa forgot completely every reason this was wrong. Jon started thrusting with a low moan, holding her hips tight.
“Jon, Jon, Jon.”
She kept saying it, couldn’t stop saying his name.
His eyes were dark when he looked at her. “You like that?” Jon asked, almost growling, thrusting again to emphasize the question.
“Yes,” she moaned.
He went harder. And harder. Jon leaned down and kissed her, his tongue wrapping around hers. Sansa squeezed her legs around him, wanting him closer, even deeper inside her.
“Yes, that’s it, Sansa,” Jon groaned. “Uhh…so good.”
They stared into each other’s eyes as their bodies satisfyingly moved against each other. Every inch of her, of him, their lips meeting and mouths sharing each other’s breaths.
Oh fuck, but it was never like this.
Fucking and making love at the same time. This pleasure and sense of connection no other man had matched.
He kissed her, hips gyrating. “I love you,” he murmured against her mouth.
She was surprised at the confession. She wasn’t sure if he’d meant to say it. Sansa gripped him close, hands clutching desperately at his back. “Oh, Jon.” His tongue was in her mouth before she could say it back.
His hand moved to her center where their bodies met, and his fingers danced along her clit. She arched her back, pulling her mouth away from his own as her head fell back.
Jon kept watching her pleasure play out on her features. “I’m so tired of fighting it, Sansa,” he said. His hips stuttered, body shaking, his free arm steadying him above her.
Sansa looked at him, and she knew they were both lost, belonging only to each other. “Yes,” she agreed. “I love you,” she said.
At that he slammed into her, as if she’d given him a great burst of energy as he buried his cock deep into her pussy, his face falling against her collarbone. “I know,” he said.
(How had he known when she hadn’t? She was too wrapped up in this moment to think on it).
Jon moved his head so his mouth was at her ear and he spoke of how perfect she was, how beautiful, how good she felt, how he’d waited his whole life to have her like this. “I love you,” he said again, hotly.
She wondered how he made even that sweet declaration sound debauched.
“Cum for me, Sansa,” he growled his command, somehow fucking her even harder and harder with each thrust. “I need to feel you cumming on my cock.”
With his next thrust she was cumming just like he commanded, biting his shoulder to muffle her cry, holding onto him as if for dear life, holding onto him like her body could barely withstand the power of her peak, as if she would fall to pieces were he not there to hold her together.
(Later, she will remember la petite mort, the “little death” and finally understand its meaning—for was she not between life and death itself, Jon her only tether from oblivion?).
“Yes, yes, Sansa!” Jon moaned, eyes rolling back, cumming inside her, filling her up, and she loved the feeling of it shooting into her, hot and reckless. Uncaring that her brother came inside her and was the first man to ever do so without protection.
It was so wrong, but it only felt right.