Chapter Fifteen::Fight Me.

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A/N: Just realised this story is a lot like the story of Mulan...oh well! Enjoy X

It was as cold as it had been all week. The wind, brisk and brutal, swept in from the North and followed down into the Stormlands. It wasn't particularly appealing weather, but the Northerners were far used to it by now. The weather, in fact, was a pleasant break from the torrential rain that always seemed to plague Deepwood Motte when winter was close. Raina, though enjoying the breaks of sun they got on the road, welcomed the wind and rain, finding them relaxing on most occasions; the way the rain fell and grouped into glinting pools on the muddied ground, and the way the wind bristled through tumbling leaves and on occasion forced lose hair in all sorts of directions, was calming in complicated times such as these, easing the conflicting thoughts that haunted Raina's mind.

People were starting to find out, the Forresters, her brother, and she had not even told him, how long was it to be before her father noticed her familiarity. The King's forces made for Storm's End, where King Renly sat and, where Robb would swear an oath of fealty to him just as his father had done to Robert. Raina could understand his reasoning, and backed him entirely, however she somehow found herself wondering where to go from there. She was nervous; was it safe to stay in the King's company with her father so close? Or should she not take the risk and jump ship while she still could, finding her way from Storm's End? Or would her father leave once there, and lead them back to the life they'd shared before he'd arrived? All possibilities seemed futile at this stage, as first they would have to reach Storm's End, and that was still a few days away. They'd made for a break in the travel, setting up camp some leagues away, and giving the men a break from the long trek they were on. Raina was thankful of theses rests the King allowed, as it gave her a chance to take some minutes alone and practice her fighting. It had been some time since she'd last practised, as spending time with old friends seemed to prioritise that, however now, on this dull and dank morning, was the perfect chance to pick up the routine.

Wondering past the sombre view of landscape, Raina hung her head, her hair having grown to an appropriate length that it now grew toward her shoulders. Luckily no one had said anything of her feminine appearance, or at least not yet. She was sure that if she were to have to keep up her role of Ray, then a hair cut would be in order soon enough. She tried her hardest, however, not to contemplate how long in the future this charade would have to go on for, as it was already becoming a tiresome game to play. And in her ideal world, the game was almost over, though that could not be determined as of yet. All that was for sure was that right now, all Raina cared for, was reaching the practice ring without falling in the slippery mud, that layered the ground, and not causing any havoc on the way. She had been held responsible for a few rows, that had kicked off in her presence, but being renown for spending time with the King, no one dared challenge her or punish her for anything; and so, so far, she'd been left without any trouble that had reached the King, or had compromised her position in anyway. Today was not going to be the start of it. At least not if she could help it.

The ring was in sight, as the shy figure edged further round the corner, the only concerning thing beingsomething else was within view as well. Something holding a rare familiarity, one that had not been welcomed in some time - though Raina was indeed relieved that it were him rather than anyone else, whom would effect her disposition any more so than already. Even still, his presence alarmed her, not enough to run so easily, but still she felt unnerved. "Your Grace," she bowed, entering the ring with some cautiousness. "Ray," he smiled, whilst approaching her with a dull blade already in hand. It was not entirely shocking that Robb had worked out her whereabouts, as if she was not with the Forresters, she was only ever in the training grounds. "It's been a while, you sure you haven't grown rusty?" She quipped, snatching the blade and trying her best to compose herself as though nothing were wrong, or as though nothing could go wrong in a moments notice. She had to be cautious, yet seem relaxed. He couldn't know, not yet at least. Too many things were to play at this moment, letting her secret go could compromise everything Raina had worked so hard to build in the passing months. "I'm sure I'll manage," the King smirked, handling his blade swiftly, and poising it at her in a quick motion. Little did the King know that Raina, though having not trained with him, had been spending a large amount of time with Rodrik - an equally skilled fighter - and had acquired a lot of time with a sword in the meanwhile, learning how to beat even the likes of Rodrik and Gregor; the King was hardly likely to be any harder to conquer.

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