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You Can't Go Home Again

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You can’t bring it back either. Sansa’s words kept echoing in his head.

You can’t bring it back.

Is that what he was trying to do? Was Winterfell just a phantom he was chasing?

You can’t bring it back.

Is that what Sansa was trying to do—by starting this… thing between them?

Jon spends those next few weeks learning Alayne’s body and bed intimately. Each time he kisses her and swallows her gasps, each time he runs his teeth lightly along her neck, each time her legs wrap around his waist—it becomes harder to call her Alayne and not Sansa.

But what choice did he have? You could not have sex with your own half-sister, an accusing, self-loathing voice taunts in his mind. The truth is: he feels absolutely powerless to resist her.

After all this time, after everything, how could he have possibly walked away? Refused her?

Sansa was Jon’s weakness.

“What do you want?” Jon asked her one morning, pressing feather light kisses to her shoulder. He suspects she knows he means more than just sexually—what she wants, what she needs, how he can make her happy—but she doesn’t acknowledge it and for now he doesn’t push.

Instead, she got on all fours on the bed that had become theirs and Jon’s cock twitched at the sight of her. He swiftly moved behind her, nearly embarrassed at his eager anticipation.

“Pull my hair,” Alayne instructed as he pounded into her from behind. She was confident in stating what she wanted, and it set his blood afire. Jon grabbed a fistful of that dark hair and used it for greater leverage with his thrusts, causing Alayne to moan and arch her back. “Yes, Jon. Like that!”

It wasn’t fair, he thought dimly, that she got to call out his name, but he couldn’t call out her true name back, like he wanted. Yet as his hips loudly slapped into her perfect ass, and her sweet hot cunt pulsed around him as she came, he couldn’t find it in himself to care.

---

He slips slowly, he thinks.

Or maybe fast—maybe all at once. Jon isn’t sure. He only knows he’s been ensnared.

She straddled him on the sofa after they finished dinner one evening and they kissed until their lips were sore. There was something nice about all this kissing without taking it further just this moment, Jon thought. His arms were wrapped around her waist clutching her close.

“You know, this isn’t going to get me to change my mind,” Sansa said, though not unkindly.

Jon blinked. “You think that’s why I’m doing this?”

Whatever ways he hoped to bargain with her and persuade her to come home with him, this certainly hadn’t been one of them. If he was honest, the more time passed here, the more holding onto Winterfell felt like holding onto sand, always slipping through his fingers. He still wanted Winterfell, but there was a chasm between wanting and having, Jon had found.

(Was it the same sort of chasm between wanting Sansa and having Alayne?).

Sansa shrugged and averted her eyes from him.

“Is that why you’re doing this?” Jon asked with trepidation.

“No,” Sansa said sharply, meeting his eyes again. Jon breathed a sigh of relief.

Jon had wanted to ask her from the beginning why she was doing this, why she would want him. But he’d avoided asking directly, afraid if he did that she’d think twice about it and change her mind. Jon wasn’t sure he could handle that, now that he had a taste of her.

Sansa began placing pecks to his neck as she leaned into him, and Jon groaned as he tightly held her hips.

“I’m showing you I love you,” she explained as she took his earlobe with her teeth.

It was a tight squeeze to his heart, those words. With his last bit of concentration, he asked: “Who loves me? Sansa or Alayne?”

“Does it matter?” she responded.

More than anything, Jon thought. But he said nothing, instead bucking his hips up into her as she undid his pants, and he pushed her silk panties out of the way. He brought his mouth to hers in a rough kiss, almost hoping she took it for the argument he wanted to have with her as he began to move inside of her.

After—always after—there’s some patching over of wounds occurring. Some silent healing. Jon may not know the details, but he knows this much. He traces her curves with the pads of his fingertips. She shivers contentedly.

Jon knows—Alayne would never give him her body unless she trusted him with it. Sansa would never kiss him and touch him unless she felt safe.

His resistance and resolve leak out of him, slowly.

(Or all at once).

---

Three months he’s been here. Three months in which he’s been holding the bid on Winterfell while waiting to change Sansa’s mind. A phone call with his banker makes it clear he will have to actually purchase the estate or let it go if he wants his money instead.

Jon really hadn’t thought it would take this long to convince her.

They sit at Sansa/Alayne’s kitchen table when he casually recounts the conversation to her, makes it clear that he has to make a decision.

She bit her lip hesitantly and kept quiet.

Winterfell or Sansa? Winterfell or Alayne? Did it matter which way he worded it? He thought back to her own declaration that it didn’t.

Who was she: his sister, his lover? Both?

But Jon still had some last gasps within him.

Jon had to muster them all to the surface as he stood up from his chair and looked down at her in frustration. “Are you going to say anything?” he asked.

She was so calm when she looked up at him, it somehow made him angrier. “What would you like me to say?”

Only the way her fingers drummed along the tabletop indicated there was some disquiet within her.

“I’d like you to tell me whether I should buy Winterfell back and if I do, are you just going to let me go without you?”

Silence.

It spilled out of him instantly— at least of this, he was sure.

“I’d like you to tell me what happened to you, why you’re living under a fake name like a criminal when you know the Boltons are gone, what it is you’re running from. I’d like you to tell me just what the fuck we are doing. What are we, Sansa? What am I to you?” he demanded.

“You are Jon,” Sansa said simply.

He laughed mirthlessly. “That really clears it up, doesn’t it?” he asked angrily.

She stood and cradled his face in her hands. “You are Jon and I’m Alayne,” she said.

Jon shook his head. “Damn it, no. You are Sansa,” he said, pulling her close.

He was done playing this game. He kissed her before she could argue and took her to bed.

Jon laid her down on the mattress and caged her in with his body, kissing his way down her torso. “Sansa,” he said defiantly. He pulled her pants and underwear down. She whined and squirmed.

“Sansa,” he said, pressing an open-mouthed kiss to her thigh.

“Sansa,” he said, burying his face in her cunt.

“Alayne,” she corrected, fingers raking through his hair. He ignored her. After she’d come, he moved back up her body and stripped his clothes off, kissing her and letting her taste herself on his tongue.

Sansa,” he said stubbornly against her mouth, looking her in the eyes as he entered her.

“No, Alayne,” she said breathlessly, clutching at his back, digging in her nails.

He growled and bit her neck in retaliation. “Sansa,” he said again as he picked up the pace.

Her eyes narrowed at him. He held her wrists against the bed until her eyes rolled back and she couldn’t glare at him.

“Jon!” she cried.

“Sansa,” he moaned her true name again and again with a feeling of triumph in his veins, her protests falling into whimpers, her walls squeezing his cock. She couldn’t take this away from him. Sansa—it was such a soft, musical name. Lovely and delicate, just like her. He’d missed it: Sansa, Sansa, Sansa.

Jon couldn’t go back to Winterfell without her. What would Winterfell even be without her? Not a home.

You can’t bring it back, she’d said.

But Jon too often forgot that half-whisper in the dead of night—

We can make a new home, she’d said.

He couldn’t be without her. It wasn’t just the forbidden attraction, and it wasn’t just fucking. He was making love to her.

He was in love with her.

Maybe he always had been.  

Sansa flew into her orgasm and he came with her, pouring what felt like all of himself inside of her.

After, he held her against his chest. For a moment everything felt perfect, until he felt her hot, wet tears. “Sansa,” Jon said in alarm, tugging her chin so she would look up at him. “Did I hurt you?”

Sansa shook her head, eyes clenched shut. “No—that’s the problem.”

Jon’s right hand flexed in agitation. He wanted to feel dumbfounded at her words—but he had seen enough in his life that he suspected he knew what she meant.

(In the morning, she will tell him about Petyr, the things he did to her and the things he made her do. She will tell him that she took the name Alayne to hide from him. That she stays in the Vale within 300 miles of his mansion because she expects him to search North, never anticipating she’d remain so close. That she can’t go to Winterfell because she fears he will find her).

But for now, Jon simply holds her in his arms, lets her cry quietly before they both fall into sleep.

He heard her whisper just before he dozed off: “All of me—Sansa and Alayne—loves you.”

With a jolt, he realized: her words late in the night, before drifting to sleep, were her most honest and vulnerable.

Jon withdraws his bid for Winterfell the next day. His heart is just not in it anymore. Instead, he’s found his heart is with her.

She had always been his weakness.

---

Eventually, there is compromise between them. Jon can’t begrudge Sansa when he gives up Winterfell, not now that he knows her reasons.

Not now when he knows home is no longer Winterfell but her.

But the Vale makes him restless. Jon doesn’t think he can call it his own comfortably.

After much deliberation, they take the money he would have spent on Winterfell and they move to Dorne. It is sunny, warm, and more peaceful than he ever imagined a home could be.

Jon becomes a mechanic, and he really likes the work. Sansa opens a dress shop. They’re happy.

They haven’t gone back, but they haven’t forgotten either. Maybe that was what he and Sansa really needed all along.

We can make a new home.

Sansa had never stopped dreaming. That, he remembers too. That, he’d never want to forget.

He calls her Sansa behind closed doors and she even lets her natural hair return. Jon likes that especially, likes coming home and wrapping his arms around her midsection from behind, pressing his front into her back when she makes dinner in the evening. Likes tucking his head into her neck and that red hair, soft as silk. But she remains Alayne to the outside world.

He can accept that quite easily, it turns out, when Sansa points out that Alayne Stone can marry Jon Snow.