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24 August 2011 @ 09:23 pm
Homecoming (One shot)  
Title: Homecoming

Fandom: ASOIAF

Paring: Jaime/Brienne

Rating: T

Spoilers: Through AFFC, maybe ADWD if you spint really hard. ;)

Prompt: Brienne has to explain to her father she has married the Kingslayer and brought him home to be her husband and father of her children. by shakeapearemo

Disclaimer: No sadistic fat men here! ;)

Author's note: Yes, yet another one shot from me. I just see all these orphaned prompts and must write them. This one was a challenge because we know next to nothing about Tarth or Brienne's family. I hope my interpretation is adequate. *hides* I apologize for any weird formatting issues. LJ is being a bitch again. lol



Homecoming



They called it the Sapphire Isle, but to Brienne of Tarth it was home. It was a place she that she thought  she’d never see again. When she closed her eyes, she could still see her father’s sad, resigned face as she took leave of him for  the last time. They’d fought long and hard about her decision to join Renly. Both were stubborn, unwilling to yield. Brienne viewed  Renly’s quest for the Iron Throne as a sacred duty. As her brother was long dead and her father too old for campaigning, Brienne felt the task belonged to her as Lord Selwyn’s heir. The Lord of Evenfall disagreed, arguing that her duty remained in Tarth and that no one – least of all Renly Baratheon – would accept a woman as a sworn shield.


“I’ve indulged your knightly delusions for long enough, Brienne,” Lord Selwyn had said.


The barb dug deep, deeper than Brienne would ever admit, but she’d shrugged it off determined to make her sword Renly’s. However, her father made one final effort to change her mind.


“Don’t go, my child,” he said. “I could not bear it if I lost you as I did your mother, brother and sisters.”


It almost worked, but Brienne knew that if she stayed she would be betraying everything she believed in. She had to go. She hoped one day her father would understand. Sadly, she kissed her father’s cheek and left the hall. Brienne took the first ferry for Storm’s End early the next morning.


That had been a lifetime ago. It seemed like nothing had changed since she left. Tarth looked the same as it always had, at least to her. As they neared the dock, she could hear the same calls and shouts that had echoed in her ears all her life. The nearby market bustled with activity. And there, off to her left, stood Evenfall Hall, as solid and stately as it had always been. It appeared that the war had hardly touched the home she loved so well.


“The captain said I’d find you here,” Jaime said, breaking her reverie.


She turned. “It was not meant to be a secret,” she replied.


“And yet, here you are. Alone.”


“Yes.”


Jaime looked out across the landscape. “You did not do Tarth justice, Brienne. It’s beautiful.” He pointed with his good hand. “Evenfall Hall, I presume?”


“The seat of House Tarth for hundreds of years.”


“It will be your seat one day.”


Brienne smiled, unable to resist the opportunity to tease him. “Our seat, Jaime. Or have you forgotten your vows already?”


Jaime took her teasing in stride. “They are so difficult to keep straight, wouldn’t you agree? I may need some help to remember them all.”


“I’m sure something could be arranged.” Brienne looked back at her father’s hall. “It’s been so long, Jaime, and yet, it looks like nothing has changed.”


“Much has changed, Brienne. You left Tarth a maid and return married to the most infamous knight in the Seven Kingdoms.”


“I’m not certain how my father will react to such news,” Brienne said worriedly, ignoring his jest. “We did not part on the best of terms.”


Jaime offered her his arm. “Then perhaps we should go find out.”


Pod and Peck oversaw the unloading of their baggage. They hadn’t brought much, choosing to travel as quickly and as inconspicuously as possible. Brienne procured some mounts to take them to the castle. No one recognized her, which wasn’t all that surprising. The scar on her cheek was not the only change in her appearance. She and Jaime received more than a few strange looks, but that was all. When they got to the castle, Brienne called out to the gatekeeper.


“Lady Brienne’s dead,” the gatekeeper replied. Brienne’s heart sank. Did Lord Selwyn really believe she was dead? “And besides, she wouldn’t let the Stranger himself see her in those awful Lannister colors.”


Brienne felt the blush rise on her cheeks; she had forgotten about the crimson traveling cloak Tyrion had given her in King’s Landing. Jaime chuckled softly, amused rather than insulted.


“I can assure you this is the Lady Brienne, gatekeeper,” Jaime said. “And I’ve got a golden dragon to prove it.”


Brienne started to protest, but the gatekeeper cut her off. “Is that so? Make it three and she could be the bloody Others for all I care.”


“Done.”


Once they were inside, Brienne cornered Jaime. “You can’t just go around bribing the guards, Jaime! This isn’t Casterly Rock.”


“A Lannister always pays his debts,” he reminded her. “But he also collects on those owed. You never know when you may need someone like our friend up there to look the other way.”


Brienne couldn’t fathom when something like that would occur, but she let the matter drop. She would have a talk with the gatekeeper later; if Jaime hadn’t bribed him to open the gate there was no telling how long it would have taken to find someone who recognized her. From what she could see so far, there weren’t many servants left from her youth. It saddened her.


Together, Jaime and Brienne made their way into the castle proper. Rather than attempt to convince anyone else of her identity, Brienne merely asked where Lord Selwyn could be found. A passing washerwoman, her arms full of unwashed laundry, directed them to the solar. Brienne thanked her and assured the woman that she knew the way.


Once they got to the solar, Brienne hesitated before opening the door. She glanced at Jaime, who gave her a nod of encouragement. Steeling herself, Brienne pushed the door open. Lord Selwyn turned to see the interruption as Brienne and Jaime slipped inside. He was tinkering with his seeing glass and it made her smile.


Lord Selwyn did not return her smile, however. Instead, he looked at her like he’d seen a ghost. Brienne could feel the guilt rise in her chest. How hard it must have been for him!


“Father?” she asked. “It's me, it's Brienne.”


Slowly, Selwyn's eyes focused and he saw her, but he didn't reach out for her. Brienne tried not to let that discourage her; Lord Selwyn had never been an overly affectionate father. “They told me you were dead,” he said finally.


Brienne shifted uncomfortably. She remembered the many close calls she'd had; it was a miracle she wasn't dead. But she had no idea how to explain. “Father, I...”


Battlefield reports are often mistaken, Lord Selwyn, as I'm sure you are well aware,” Jaime interjected. Brienne was profoundly grateful he spoke up, because she had no idea what she was about to say.



Lord Selwyn turned his gaze to Jaime. “Kingslayer?” he asked incredulously. “Isn't escorting a maiden to her home beneath a knight of the Kingsguard?”



Jaime didn't flinch. “As you can see, Lord Selwyn, I am no longer clad in white. My life is with Brienne now, as her husband.”


What?”



Brienne realized she had to say something before her father and Jaime came to blows. “Father, what Jaime says is the truth. We are married. Please, if you'll just let me explain...”



The three of them sat at the table while Brienne told her story. She told her father everything: Bitterbridge and Renly's death, meeting Lady Catelyn, leaving Riverrun with Jaime, the Bloody Mummers, Harrenhal, the bear pit, her quest to find Sansa Stark, getting captured by the
Brotherhood, reuniting with Jaime, destroying the outlaws who nearly killed her and rescuing Pod, the campaigns at Jaime's side and finally her marriage. It was a long tale and the room was getting dark by the time she finished. She spoke more openly and fervently than she ever had, especially when it came to how she felt about Jaime. She needed her father to understand and accept her choice. She'd disappointed him so many times already.



Lord Selwyn asked to see Oathkeeper. Brienne reached for the scabbard and pulled out the blade. The red and gold danced in the fading light.


You gave this to her?” Lord Selwyn asked Jaime.


I know no one more worthy to wield it.”



Brienne thought she saw a faint smile on her father's lips, but it passed so quickly she was sure she'd imagined it. Lord Selwyn turned to his daughter. “I will think on all you have told me. It is much to take in, I'm sure you will agree.”


Of course, Father,” she said, trying to hide her disappointment. She and Jaime rose to take their leave. Just before they got to the door,
Lord Selwyn called.


Yes?”


I am glad you have returned, Brienne.”




Just as Jaime and Brienne were set to break their fast the next morning, one of Lord Selwyn's young squires arrived.


“Lord Selwyn wishes to see Ser Jaime,” the boy said.


Jaime looked at Brienne quizzically. After their reception the day before, Jaime was certain that he was the last person Lord Selwyn wanted to see. Honestly, he expected much worse. Jaime received scorn from men of honor all over the Seven Kingdoms, but until now, none of them were the father of the woman he loved. He knew it would hurt Brienne terribly if her father was not willing to accept Jaime as her husband, the father of her children.


Brienne turned to the squire. “Of course, we'll attend him at once.”


The boy shook his head. “Lord Selwyn wishes to see Ser Jaime alone.”


Jaime rose and threw his napkin on the table. Best to get it over with, whatever it was. “Lead on...”


“Caron, Will Caron, ser.”


Jaime dropped a kiss on Brienne's forehead. “I'll be back soon.”


He followed Will Caron through the corridors of the castle. He was surprised when they emerged in the practice yard. There Lord Selwyn stood armed with shield and sword.


“Ser Jaime, my lord,” young Will Caron announced, unnecessarily. He reminded Jaime strongly of Pod, all gangly and eager to please.


“Fetch Ser Jaime a sword and shield, Caron. Be quick about it.”


The boy hurried off. Jaime looked Selwyn slightly nonplussed. What game was the old man playing?


“You'll forgive the suddenness of this, Kingslayer, but I thought you and I should talk...alone.”


Kingslayer. So that's how this was going to go. He thought of Brienne back in the castle. “I have no wish to fight you, Lord Selwyn.”


“This is still my keep, Ser Jaime. I merely wish to see if you remain as fearsome as your reputation would have us believe.”



Jaime looked down at his stump. Once upon a time, he would have fought without a second thought when challenged in such a way. But this was Brienne's father. He had two choices: walk away and let loose the rumor that Jaime Lannister was too craven to fight an old man, or fight Lord Selwyn and do his best to defeat him, but not kill him.



Caron brought Jaime a sword and shield. The shield was covered in the arms of Tarth. Jaime fastened the shield onto his right arm and took the sword from Caron. It was a bit heavier than he was used to, but he could swing it well enough.


As you wish, my lord.”



Lord Selwyn attacked almost before Jaime had finished speaking. He only had a split second to parry before the sword would have taken off his head. Jaime pushed Selwyn back with his shield.


Why did you marry my daughter, Kingslayer? Was it to save your own miserable hide?”



Jaime blinked. He was asking that now? Seven hells. Jaime raised his sword, advanced on his opponent, and attacked. “I married Brienne because I love her,” he grunted.


She is no great beauty, ser,” Selwyn countered.


“I...don't...care,” Jaime ground out. Was Selwyn trying to talk him to death?


Selwyn slowly gave ground. Jaime needed to concentrate more fighting left handed and still Selwyn insisted on bombarding him with questions in addition to sword blows. Jaime could feel his concentration start to slip. Soon Jaime was the one giving ground and on the defensive.


“You are an oathbreaker and a traitor, Kingslayer. Why should I believe a word you say?”


Jaime finally had enough. He ducked Selwyn's swing, feigned to the left and punched the sword out of Selwyn's hand with his shield. Jaime quickly rose to his full height and held his sword at the old man's throat.


“Because she does.” Jaime stared into the old man's eyes for a long second, then threw his sword and shield down and walked away. He was almost to the door, when Lord Selwyn called his name.



Jaimeturned ans saw the old man smiling at him. “I understand now. I didn't before...but I do now.”



A test; it had all been a test, Jaime realized. A father testing to see if a suitor was worthy of his daughter. A most unusual way to be sure, but then again maybe the Seven Kingdoms would be better off if more fathers followed Lord Selwyn's example. Jaime laughed at the thought. He returned to Lord Selwyn and together they cleaned up the remains of their skirmish. Neither man saw Brienne looking down on them from the tower.



Brienne smiled exasperatedly at the pair of them. It was good to finally be home.







 
 
Current Location: Evenfall Hall
Current Mood: exhaustedexhausted
Current Music: Men in a War - Suzanne Vega
 
 
 
arameaearameae on September 11th, 2012 02:45 pm (UTC)
(And the babies ? Where are the babies ? Sweet blond babies with blue eyes ?;D)
And I hope Lord Selwyn will later hug his daughter !
All your oneshots leave me aching for more...
michellemtsu: Jaime Lannistermichellemtsu on September 12th, 2012 11:49 am (UTC)
Thank you! I may have to write about the babies at some point. (Must get laptop fixed first though lol) Let's hope the muses cooperate! :)