Chapter Nine::On The Road

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The morning was a foggy one, the mist in the air clouding the road that lay ahead, but it did not phase the King, nor his men. It hardly bothered Raina in all honesty, it was only an observation she had taken note of upon leaving their brief campsite. This was the morning she rode at Robb's side, something that had seemed to be a good idea. Instead she now found herself struggling to keep up with her previous lies and make a valid story out of the new ones she spewed out at a wim. The King had found multiple questions to ask on the road, and to her surprise Raina had answered all of them in a believable manner, or at least she had hoped she did. "Is it not my turn to ask a question, your Grace?" Raina piped up after a brief silence, one that had followed a long stream of interrogations. The King laughed at her enthusiasm, and nodded slowly. "What is it you wish to know?" He asked, turning his head to face her for a brief moment. Thinking over this for a moment, Raina found that this may be the only time she would get to ask the King an honest question for some time, and she wished to make it worth the while. There was only one question she wished to have answered, one that had to be phrased in a certain way without sounding too forward, or giving away her cover. "Did you have any close friends when you were younger? Outside your family?" Raina inquired, trying her best to sound as innocent as possible. The King didn't answer, clearly looking for a reply. "I remember when i was young, there were other boys in the village, one family in particular, they had several children but one my age, me and her used to play together a lot over the years," Raina lied again, straight through her teeth as if it were nothing.

The King chuckled at her little anecdote, somehow finding it amusing. "There was a family. They had a daughter a year or so younger than myself and my brother, she loved to fight and play with us. We were quite close as children."  Robb reminisced, his eyes looking ahead but not really focusing on the road. "Her name was Raina. She was...beautiful, back then. It's been sometime since i last saw her. Jon always said she should be the girl i marry. At the time i thought he was right..." Robb trailed off, clearly thinking of something just not wishing to speak of it. "What changed?" Raina asked quietly, not wanting to push the King but becoming desperate to know what he thought of her, or what he at least remembered about her. This was the first time she had heard about Robb wishing to marry her, though it didn't come as a shock as they had joked about it as children, even their parents had spoke of it, but never once had Riana thought it meant anything to Robb, and she certainly didn't think he'd remember it, or her, or anything he had just spoke of. "We drifted apart. Our parents stopped speaking and suddenly this dream alliance didn't mean anything, and whatever marriage there could've been died with it," Robb stated finally, clearly wanting to change the subject. This had taken Riana by surprise, she hadn't known their parents stopped speaking, and she definitely did not know why, and now she wished she had caught on sooner. Or at least had bothered to question back then why they no longer saw the Starks. Now it was clear what kind of toll it had taken on the family's relationship with one another.

It was in that break of conversation that Raina really thought over what the King had said. "Her name was Raina, she was...beautiful, back then."Beautiful? Had Robb Stark really just called her, Raina Glover, beautiful? He had mockingly called her it as children, as he knew it angered Raina to know end. Her sister was beautiful, a beautiful lady, she was anything but, and being called anything similar made her mad. Even if it was meant as a genuine compliment, she still disliked it to now end. Now, however, she found herself silently blushing, and trying her best to think of anything but Robb's northern voice and what said voice had just uttered.

Distracting her from her thoughts, the sound of low growling of sorts echoed from below her horse, bringing her out of her little daydream. Looking down past her dangling feet, Raina found herself exceedingly relieved to see a somewhat familiar friend trotting along beside the King. Greywind. She could remember hearing of him when he was a pup, Arya always was frustrated with Greywind's scandalous behavior, and had written a lot about the trouble that specific direwolf had gotten itself into. Of course Raina always found these tales amusing, as the direwolf was a perfect match to Robb at that age. She had never seen the direwolf before, but now, laying eyes on the beast for the first time, she found herself utterly amazed by it's size and beauty. Greywind appeared to also be the perfect name for the oversized wolf, as it's pelt was several shades of grey, as were it's large eyes. He was a force to be reckoned with, apparently, though that was hard to believe with this adorable dog looking up at her. He seemed to have taken a liking to Raina in an instant, following her horse throughout the entire trek to The Twins. She had noticed him wandering between the tents several times before today, but never had she seen him so close, and so gentle-looking. "Charming, isn't he?" Robb's voice once again broke through Raina's trance, bringing her back to the conversation at hand. "Aye, he is." Raina replied with a small smile. still casting her gaze to the direwolf at her side. "He seems to like you." Robb observed, watching how the wolf stuck to the side of Raina's horse as if he were attached. "Is it unusual for him to take a liking to your men?" Raina asked swiftly, dragging her eyes away from the beautiful creature that sauntered along beside her. "He usually prefers the company of women," Robb chuckled softly, amused by how that portrayed the wolf.

Becoming slightly warey, Raina diverted her gaze to the road ahead. She found it hard to believe she had made it this far. It was difficult to comprehend that only a few weeks back she had been running, and only running, for days on end, desperately trying to escape the Wolf's Wood in order to be free of her father and the monstrous engagement he had arranged that loomed over Raina every moment she spent in Deepwood Motte. Yet even still, being so far away from that treacherous man, she still feared for her safety. What would become of her if the King the were to discover her true origins and name? Would he punish her for lying to the King and hand her back to her father where she belongs? Or would he protect her like he had always done? And what of her brother? Would he recognise her anytime soon? And if he did would he hand her to the King and divulge her secret? Or would he embrace her and protect her like the good brother he was? So many questions, and so little time to have them answered. Raina couldn't be sure of how this whole enever was going to end, and so her best bet was to keep herself out of the crossfire. And if the day ever came that the King were to find out, or gods forbid her father show up, she would have to hope the King was still the man she remembered him to be. The man she once loved...

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