The rabbit bolted and she had it within the first five seconds. Her teeth were latched around its head and with a quick shake its neck was broken. The smell of its blood was intoxicating, like the smells of a full course meal boiled down into one glorious liquid.
As she gnawed on the rabbit’s body she would take quick glances around her. The courtyard gardens at Highgarden were much as she remembered them, though were now cast in the grays and blacks of Shepard’s vision. All around, the Highgarden soldiers patrolled in their long green cloaks, smelling of stale ale, old sweat, metal, and a hundred other scents,
Before long she finished with the rabbit and dug a small hole to bury the remains. When she had first started to have the hound dreams she wasn’t sure if they were even real, but they were similar enough to the green dreams to make her wonder. So, in the dreams she had started to dig holes during her nightly excursions as Shepard the hound. In the morning she would prowl the grounds as Lena Tyrell until she found the holes, and proved to herself that the dreams were indeed truth through another set of eyes.
Climbing the eastern tower steps were much easier with sight and four legs, and before long Lena was looking upon herself sitting in a chair next to Willas who was reading out of “The Fields of Fire, a History of House Targaryn”. Little did her Lord husband know she had snuck off into Shepard’s skin with her blindfold covering her closed eyes.
Willas looked much as he did the day they were wed. Tall, but not as robust as his younger brothers. Handsome, but in a cleaner more average way than the Knight of Flowers or the Kingslayer. He was not a man to set a girl’s heart afire with passion, but he filled hers with a love deeper than a young girl can imagine. Willas was not the kind of man to ride into a burning building or slay a dragon for you, but he was the kind of man who would stand next to you for all time without a thought of wavering. He was the man she loved and that was all he needed to be.
“Lena, are you asleep?” her Lord husband suddenly asked.
“Of course not, you were talking about the Young Dragon I believe?” she said quickly after shifting back into her own body, back into the darkness. She could hear the slight change in Shepard’s breathing as he regained control of himself and padded off to his floor born bed. She could hear the slight pause in Willas’ voice and knew his face must have been priceless. “Oh, and your handkerchief is sliding out of your pocket, best stow it better my love,” she said with a smile.
Willas started to say something as she heard him shift his hand to the cloth in question, that she had seen easily through Shepard’s eyes. When Willas found the handkerchief was indeed falling out all he could do was stammer and stutter as Lena wore her most mischievous smile. Teasing Willas was almost as fun as teasing Toten, and ten times as easy.
- – -
Lena hovered somewhere between consciousness and the void in Willas’ arms. Their love making had been fierce and both were still trapped in the afterglow one can only find with those they love. Willas could not run, or ride a horse, or fight in war, but he remained unhindered in what Lena considered the more important aspects of a man’s life.
Without warning Lena was in the dark void of one of the green dreams. She was falling through nothingness naked, and could see naught but blackness around her until little points of light started to shimmer into existence around her. The day of her wedding her sight was robbed from her, but she did not mourn her loss. Two eyes were closed that day, but a third of infinite sight was opened. As the bits of light swirled around her she felt the heaviness in her chest that came with the dreams that were destined to occur.
Suddenly she came to a stop on a hard metal ground and the pieces of light flared around her as if in a swirling wind. The brightest light found itself upon her belly and spread out into a beautiful white rose. She knew immediately that Willas’ seed must have quickened within her this very night.
The dream wavered and she was pulled away into another. Her mind swirled with the feeling of dizziness that comes with a dream that is unknown, a dream that may or may not be. Gabby sat in a field of darkness with black shapes surrounding her. The dark figures brandished black blades of shadow and hate. As they swirled around her a great lion appeared, ripping and tearing through the black shadows. Before the mighty beast the shadows were banished and light bloomed in the field around Gabby. The lion’s mane was white, its front right paw gold.
Lena woke with a start, several hours had passed in the night. She felt for and donned her robe as she whistled Shepard to her side. She no longer needed a leash for him to guide her, she felt his presence now and could move freely by gingerly touching him with her mind. Before she left she felt for and kissed Willas on the brow, then she was heading down to the dungeons.
At the door down to the dark cells one of the jailers stopped her briefly before allowing her to pass, once he realized who he had stopped. The jailer was one of Margaery’s, as was most of the inner house servants, Margaery had a way with the small folk about the castle. Lena had found most of her little mice among the soldiers and field workers. Which of the two women had the better spies was of little matter as they all belonged to Olenna.
The Queen of Thornes had invited Lena to her and Margaery’s weekly luncheon of tea and biscuits shortly after her marriage to Willas. Lena had quickly discovered that the tea party was not a weekly gathering of pleasure, it was training. Lena and Margaery were made to play a game of Olenna’s choosing each week. In the beginning it involved finding a false rumor the Queen of Thorns had planted among the servants and rooting out the truth. Later it involved Lena and Margaery trying to hide secrets from one another, and Olenna, by passing information to those they trusted among the castle, the goal being for the girls to discover the secret keeper of the other’s information. Often, many false secrets and lines of intrigue were used to further the deceptions. Lena had done poorly at first, but quickly caught up to Margaery after a few months time for her to finding her own little mice.
Every week the three women would sit down and Olenna would decide a winner. There were often draws and neither girl would win too often in a row. It had caused a split between Margaery, always expecting to be the best, and Lena, who had learned far more quickly than even she would have imagined. Lena’s father could play the game quite well it was said, he just chose not to. In Highgarden there was little else but the game.
In her first month Lena was tasked with rooting out the little birds around the castle. The number of people bought by Littlefinger or tweeting to Varys was astounding. Even more astounding was the number of Lords and Ladys that had a presence in the castle. Lord Tywin had quite a few throughout the kitchens (a scary thought) and the stable boy was certainly reporting to agents of Konrad Lugus and his son. Even the Red Viper had one of Lena’s handmaidens in his employ. Lena especially liked to tell that girl of the bedroom escapades of her and Willas, embellished of course. Lena liked the idea of working Oberyn up from afar over his friend Willas and his beautiful blind wife. Men were so easy to control. By now Lena had a steady supply of lies going out all over the seven kingdoms mixed with just enough truth to make the Lords keep their spies in place. Toten may battle on the field to keep her safe, but Lena battled daily in her own home to return the protection to him.
Finally, Lena found herself sitting on a stool one of the jailers had placed for her across from the small cell. Shepard sat patiently beside her.
From the direction of the cell came the voice of the Kingslayer, “What do you want?”
“I came here to talk good Ser. Just to talk.”
“And why should I talk to you at such an early hour? I need my beauty sleep after all.”
“Because, I think you still have some greatness left in you Ser Jamie and I want to find it.”
He snorted, “No longer. I was great once, but your oafish brother took the best part of me.”
“No,” she said calmly, “you were a monster once, and my brother took the worst of you. Let’s find out if you are an oath breaker without a sword, or if you are something more.”
They talked until dawn and would meet such weekly from then on. Jamie in his cell and Lena on her stool.