A/N: would just like to say a huge thank you to all of you reading this, for getting this story to 50 votes. Thank you, thank you, thank you!! I'm so glad that you are all enjoying it, and so I thought I'd publish this early. Thank you again, it means so much. Xxx
Catch up Finn!" The childish laugh resonated, reaching the ears of her following brother, whom tailed not far behind her and her companions. Raina was an enthusiastic young girl, one desperate to see old friends again. It had been so long since they'd last seen the Starks that Raina could hardly remember what some of the many children looked like; Robb, however, having been separated from the Glover girl for however long, managed to still play in her memories, more so than any other of the Starks. "I'm coming! Give me a moment." Replied her brother, Finn, who rode along at his own pace, at his older brother's side. Delvin was the oldest of the Glover children, and the heir to Deepwood Motte; he rarely spared anytime for the company of his siblings anymore, yet whenever a trip to Winterfell was afoot, he was more than happy to converse with them. They each found his tendencies odd, but Raina was too young to complain and the others we're merely happy to have their brother back for whatever short time it happened to be on any given occasion.
"She's eager." Delvin remarked, watching the delict girl ride on, leaving their sister and father in her wake. "That she is. She has taken a liking to the Starks." Commented Finn, his gaze following that of his brothers, "She may even be so lucky as to marry one of them." He continued, his oblivious comment not going unnoticed by his more socially attuned brother. "Father won't allow it." Was all Delvin said, before riding onwards, dust kicking up at the heel of his steed. Finn knew little of the strategies behind betrothals and the like, but saw no reason why the young girl's marriage to a Stark could go wrong. If it were Robb she wed, she would become wardeness of the North in due time, putting the Glover's in an even better stance than before. Though that was surely a long way off, as Raina was only young, and Esme was sure to be married off before their much younger sister; and if anyone were to marry a Stark, it would be her.
Distracting himself from the thoughts of weddings, Finn caught up with the other members of his family, staring off to the horizon were the silhouette of a familiar settlement stood out. "Winterfell." Raina sighed in content, the setting sun's glow illuminating her excited expression for all her family to see. "I'll race you." Delvin challenged, patting his sister's horse before racing off in the fortress' direction. Raina followed quickly, laughing on her way whilst shouting something about his cheating, leaving the middle children behind with their father. Finn didn't care much for his other sister, Esme, as she was far too much of a lady for him to wish to speak with on more than the odd occasion, and possessing the stereotypically bitter view on every little thing. But this was the strange situation where they shared a similar opinion; "I wish she would never grow up," the girl smiled sadly, basking in her innocent sister's enthusiasm and excitement. "As do I. But she must, as we all must, and we just have to ensure her safety in doing so." Finn replied, his mare trotting along beside his sister, gently following the path of their eager siblings. "She's a feisty one, she doesn't need us to look out of her." Laughed Esme, fiddling with the loose strands of hair trickling onto her shoulder. "There may come a time when she does need us, more than ever-" indulged Finn, the solemn mood of the conversation waning his previously hyped nature. "And we shall be there." Esme stated bluntly, not daring a glance to her older brother, "no matter who is in need of aid, we will always be there." She continued, sounding very much like her mother, "because we are a family, it is part of the deal."
Despite the pain her family had caused over several years of her life, preventing her interaction with the Starks from a certain age, cutting contact with the Forresters, sending Delvin away, ceasing her fighting lessons, sending Finn away, and finally wishing to marry her to the Boltons, Raina still found herself in awe of her siblings bond, one that had been worn and tethered over many years and yet still proved indestructible. She thought about them often; Delvin and his odd sense of secrecy, yet his noticeable affection for his sisters; Finn and his protectiveness, over those he loved, and his stubbornness, that was a noted trait throughout the family; and Esme, with her odd opinions and ability to follow what was proper, yet somehow, beyond all that was typical of her, her undying dedication to family had not gone ignored by her siblings. It was thoughts of times once spent together that reminded Raina how much she had wished things had ended differently. Back in the better days, the siblings actually socialised with one another, and were not separated to different sides of the country. Raina wished she could go back to those times, but evidently that was not going to happen. She had lost all hope of that when her father offered her up like a prize to be bargained for. And thus leading to her current predicament.
Her arrow, shot through pure rage, and some sense of nostalgia, sawed through the air and landed in the target with a triumphant thud. It was the only method Raina had discovered that allowed her to pent her hidden emotions without causing damage to someone else, which had occurred on the odd occasion when training with the King's men. That was when archery became the better coping method.
"Do you remember your first bow?" A shockingly familiar voice sounded from the other side of the ring, startling Raina into dropping her bow and cocked arrow. Whirling around on the spot, Raina found herself staring at an easily recognisable figure, which scared her beyond belief. Struggling to breath, let alone formulate words, Raina stood gawping at the much taller man, who lent casually against a nearby fence-post, as if having a normal afternoon chat with an old friend. "It was made from Ironwood, Rodrik gave it to you for your 11th name-day. You never let go of the darn thing, and one day it broke. You were heartbroken - didn't stop crying until the moment I gave you a new one." Finn chuckled to himself, forcing himself upright so that he may move towards her. "How?" She asked out of shock, stare still fixed on her brother, whom now acknowledged her true identity rather than her false one. "Your behaviour around father, and the Forresters...And the King." He smirked, waggling his eyebrows and alluring to something that had been so obvious when they had been younger. "Does father know?" Raina instantly questioned, though noting his remark about her feelings toward Robb, she was more concerned for her safety now than her crush. "No, and I don't suppose he will anytime soon." Finn, releasing his coolly folded arms so that they hung loose at his side. His tone sounded sincere, yet some sense of caution still swayed Raina's judgement. "Can I trust you?" She asked instinctively, not knowing what good it would do yet finding them to be the only words worth saying. "I'm your brother, must you really ask that?" He replied with a soft smile, reaching down and retrieving the bow she had previously dropped in surprise. "You need me, and so I'm here. It's part of the deal, remember?"
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✓ | WOLF'S BANE (R.STARK)Fanfiction
**FINISHED** This story is completely out of context and NOT following the story of the programme/books. Forced to run away, Raina Glover finds herself far from home and in a rather curious predicament, in which she is believed to be a boy by the ki...