Chapter Twenty Nine::Bastard

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The seconds passed by instantly, so quickly that it was hard to believe they'd even happened. Yet the anticipation drilled into them all like nails digging into their hands. Finn and Delvin, despite their evident fear and aggression, stepped to Raina's side, slightly in front of her so that when the obvious presence was soon with them, she would have some small shred of protection against it. She couldn't believe it, after everything, this could be it. She'd that a lot, but this could well and truly be the end of everything. Not just her charade, but her freedom, and whatever ounce of happiness she still had. Because with the events of a couple weeks back, this was probably a mere collection, nothing more. They had been Bolton men after all. 

Seeing his face made her feel sick, physically sick. And Robb stood at his side only made her feel worse. All she wanted to do was turn around, at the very least, and get away, but she couldn't; she found herself compelled to keep looking, her disgust and anguish towards the bastard constricting her movements completely, so that all she could do was stare. But it was not the monster's gaze she locked with first, but that of the one man she unconditionally loved, even now, that stood beside the monster. He looked hurt, more so than she'd anticipated, and it cut deep. Betrayal and pain all filling his beautiful blue eyes as he looked at her, no emotion or expression leaking onto his face in the time they spent gazing to one another, as if they're stare would make everything go away. She'd been right before, the happiness that had once sprung into his eyes when seeing her had now died, leaving the evident pain she'd caused to be displayed for her to see. But something else was there now, not just the pain, and betrayal, something more lurked behind the other emotions, something that Raina recognised all too well; fear. He'd glanced away, momentarily, only to have his gaze fall upon the man that terrified Raina more than anyone else, the man that was presumably here to ruin her little game, and take her back to the captivity he'd planned for her a year ago, when their engagement had been forged. Ramsay Snow. He stood with his father in the corridor, mere feet from where Raina had gathered with her brothers and Rodrik, with Robb in his company, and a few members of Robb's council as well. The crowd was yet to notice Raina's small huddle, well, the rest of them hadn't, the King was however a lot more observant than the rest of his group. After a brief glance to the bastard at his side, Robb turned his attention back to Raina, his expression seeming a lot sterner than it had been mere seconds before. He said something to the members of his company, and soon was pacing towards the small gathering at the other end of the hall, his eyes set on Raina. 

"Your grace," The other three stumbled quickly, all trying to disguise their miserable attitudes in front of the King, who paid them little attention. "Leave." Robb said quickly, his head bowing so that no one else could hear the words he spoke to Raina. She could not formulate a reply, her eyes merely locked with his, worry clouding the beautiful blue within them, that would otherwise have distracted Raina for a while. "You need to go. I cannot ensure your safety if you stand in front of the ones you try and avoid," Robb whispered carefully, before nudging Raina in the opposite direction, which led her back to the barracks; Raina would not have known where he was directing her, had she not had some guidance. She turned back to look at him, her legs moving quickly beneath her, but despite her speed she could have sworn there was a smile on his face; though it only lasted a moment, it was definitely there, and aimed at Raina as she fled the scene. Sat at the furthest end of the corridor, was another familiar face, only this one a lot furrier than the others. Greywind's head turned to it's side, his large eyes brightening when he spotted Raina. He lurched towards her, running quickly around her feet and rubbing against her affectionately, before taking off in the instructed direction, Raina following abruptly. Robb was at least, still, looking out for her, despite it all. She'd hoped maybe he still cared, but then realised he would be at her side if that were true, not his pet. 

They weaved through corridors and passages Raina had never before seen, until Greywind stopped abruptly outside an old oak door. There was nothing special about this room, apart from the fact there were guards stationed at the end of the hall, which was to be expected. They eyed Raina cautiously, but dared not make a move, as she had a large Direwolf with her, whom did not look pleased to see them. Raina simply knocked on the door, ignoring the presence of Stark guards and hoping Greywind knew what he was doing. How strange an idea it was, that she was trusting a wolf. After a dragging moment, the door creaked, the large iron handle jolting to life. It didn't take long for the door to be heaved inwards, revealing a pleasantly happy Arya, whom smiled warmly up at Raina almost instantly. "Finally," She exasperated, reaching for Raina's hand and pulling her into the room quickly, Greywind following at the same pace. Once all of them were safely within the confines of Arya's chambers, Raina released a breath she hadn't realised she'd been holding, a sick feeling still looming in her mouth despite being relatively far away from the cause of it. The door abruptly slammed shut, leaving the room in pure silence for the briefest of moments, before Arya spoke again. "Robb said you would come," She smiled more, her childish eyes seeming more at ease than they had when Raina saw them previously. "He did?" Raina challenged, eyebrows furrowing when considering that. "Yes. He said you would need somewhere to wait for him." She confirmed, turning around to face the window, the storm easing up now. 

It didn't seem like much time had passed when the door next opened, though Raina had, by that time, made for the chairs by the window, where Arya had sat moments before. The two girls had made some small shred of conversation in the meantime, and now found themselves in new company. "Robb." Arya exclaimed quickly, jumping to her feet and rushing to embrace her brother. He seemed happy to see her, hugging her small frame tightly, yet his eyes focused elsewhere. Raina stood, though made little effort to move towards him, finding it safer for her to be at a distance. "Will you leave us for a moment, Arya?" Robb smiled sweetly at his sister, whom nodded and quickly departed the room, saying nothing further, leaving them in silence. It was a sort of quiet that ate at both of them, the anticipation of who would speak first consuming them both. 

"So you know?" Raina questioned, her voice shaky as she spoke up before him. His soft gaze fell to her instantly, something that no longer resembled pain in his eyes now. He shook his said, saying nothing. "What?" She asked, sounding somewhat more confident than she had seconds before, though still feeling as though she could crumble at any moment, and not understanding the King's answer at all. It hurt to think he might hate her, or to think everything that they'd built over the passing year had now been abolished completely. "I have no idea what you've been doing all this time. But I trust you know what you're doing." Robb said, his voice sounding just as weak as hers. "And you haven't told my father?" Raina inquired, almost in disbelief that Robb, even in his anger and upset, had kept her secret. "Of course not." Robb exclaimed quickly, his eyes widening in shock, probably at the idea of Raina accusing him of betraying her trust, just as she'd betrayed his, "I will keep your secret, even from your father, if it means you will be safe. I just don't want you to get hurt." Robb breathed, striding closer. His facial expression was soft, yet something about his voice, and the way he held himself, seemed so stern and serious. Like a King. "Thank you, for not telling him," Raina whispered, Robb now stood directly in front of her, eyes boring into hers so deeply that Raina could hardly breathe, his gaze was suffocating and intoxicating all at once. And then his voice arose again, this time so quiet, and rough, "I've missed you, Raina..." 

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