CHAPTER 08 | WINTER ROSE

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CHAPTER 08 | WINTER ROSE

She wore nature upon her lips and wild was her favorite shade

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She wore nature upon her lips and wild was her favorite shade.

Ella opened up her bedroom door to find a guard standing outside of it. Rolling her eyes, she slammed the door shut again. Damn Stark, she growled in her head. She couldn't believe he didn't trust her, but then again, she was keeping from him the fact that she was Cersei's daughter. But she didn't want to tell him until she knew who her father was and the only way to do that was to question Jaime or Robert, and both men were under her mother's thumb and miles away.

She paced around in her room for awhile, fiddling with things and tidying up the bed. Her hair was pulled back in a messy braid down her spine with a few curls persistently poking out around her face. Every time she moved the long braid swayed with her. She wore the pretty dress Robb had gifted her, pairing it with her old but durable shoes from King's Landing.

Just as she was about to sit down on her bed, the door opened to reveal Robb. He stared at her for a second and Ella remembered what happened between them last night. Did he truly care for her or was he playing mind games with her?

"Good morning," he said in a strange voice, as if he was restraining himself from saying anything else to her.

"Morning," she said curtly, eyeing him warily. What was he up to? She thought curiously. She wished she could know what was going on inside his head.

"I will be going riding this morning so for a few hours you'll be by yourself free to do whatever you please in the vicinity of Winterfell. If you try anything you will be apprehended by guards and dealt with accordingly," his voice was orderly and thick, sending a shiver down her spine.

It also hurt her that he thought she was going to do anything stupid. All she wanted since she got to Winterfell was some freedom but things hadn't exactly turned out in her favor. Now, she had an opportunity to gain Robb's trust by being on her best behavior. She had been planning on escaping but if she gained his trust perhaps he would let her go.

She nodded and curtsied, a gracious smile on her face. Her face still stung from the bruises but not as much as before thankfully. "Thank you, Lord Stark."

Robb's blue eyes flickered with what Ella thought to be amusement as he nodded and then exited the room, shutting the door behind him. Ella sighed in relief as she sat down on her bed and thought about what she would do so early in the morning. It was strange not having any chores to do. By the end of a work day her back would ache and her knees would be sore from cleaning every inch of the castle. And now her hands weren't as cracked and her legs weren't cramping anymore.

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