A few days prior to the wedding, Jon employed the help of Arya and Bran to keep Sansa away from the glass gardens. It wasn’t the easiest task, for it was one of Sansa’s favorite places, not to mention important for the North’s food supply and as Queen, Sansa took the responsibility of feeding her people in winter seriously. But the glass gardens did not just provide food supply. Jon excitedly picked several winter roses for Sansa. He wasn’t the best at weaving, but he sought Gilly’s help so they might use the roses to create a flower crown. Jon didn’t know if Sansa would want to wear it during the ceremony, but he at least wanted to have the chance to bestow it to her as a gift on their wedding day. Jon knew Sansa loved winter roses, and that knights would supposedly gift such crowns to their ladyloves when they won tourneys. He also couldn’t stop thinking of how beautiful she would look with the flower crown; the blue petals of the winter rose reminded him of Sansa’s eyes.
“Do you think she’ll like it? Will it go with her dress?” he asked Arya anxiously as he and Gilly worked on the weaving in Sam and Gilly’s solar.
Arya looked at him with impatience, standing by the hearth with her arms crossed while Little Sam toddled around the room. “Jon Targaryen, soon to be Jon Stark,” she said, and Gods did it feel good to imagine being Jon Stark, “if you don’t know by now my sister would love this, perhaps you don’t deserve to marry her,” Arya finished with a smirk.
“Arya be nice,” Gilly said, taking the same tone she used with Little Sam.
Arya planted her hands on her hips and scoffed. “I am always nice!”
Jon and Gilly laughed lightly at that.
“Look, I’m just saying she’ll love it,” Arya said.
“And will it match her dress? Or does she have to wear her actual crown in the ceremony? Gods, I should have asked!” Jon said, rubbing his forehead in frustration.
Arya rolled her eyes. “Calm down. It matches the dress fine and I don’t know if she has to wear her crown during the ceremony, but she’ll love it either way.”
“It’s okay to be nervous, Jon,” Gilly said, placing a reassuring hand at his shoulder.
“I just want it to be perfect for Sansa, she deserves it to be everything she’s ever wanted,” Jon said to Gilly and Arya. Jon knew enough of Sansa’s first wedding to know how terrifying and humiliating it had been. And of course Tyrion had made a drunken scene, which he thinks must have been embarrassing, even if it prevented the bedding ceremony. At least now, Sansa was Queen and already made clear that no bedding ceremony was to take place. It will be different this time in every way, and he just wants to ensure Sansa feels loved, happy, cherished, and beautiful.
“Well I don’t think you need to worry,” Gilly said. “It seems you’re everything she’s wanted.”
Jon smiled as Arya groaned. He looked to his cousin. “This grumbling coming from the girl making moon-eyes at Gendry all day,” Jon said with a smirk.
Arya’s jaw dropped. “I do not—”
“You do,” Gilly said with a laugh.
Arya scowled at them as they finished weaving one side of the crown. “Well, I think I’ve had enough of this,” she said and headed toward the door. “I’m going to spar.”
“With Gendry, no doubt,” Gilly teased, and Arya huffed.
“Arya, wait,” Jon called out when her hand was on the knob. “Remember not to tell Sansa, it’s—”
“A surprise,” Arya nodded, cutting him off. “She won’t find out about it from me, you lovesick fool,” she said and exited.
Jon knew she was making fun of him, but he couldn’t stop the smile that came to his face at her words.
The toughest reaction to the wedding plans was not what Sansa anticipated, as it didn’t come from lords and ladies of the North. No, the toughest reactions came from her uncle Edmure and cousin Robin when they discovered Sansa wanted neither of them to give her away. Instead, she had decided that Arya would.
“She’s a girl,” Robin said, as if Sansa was not aware, looking slack jawed between them.
“I’m more than a girl,” Arya said, playing with the dagger in her hand absentmindedly. Sansa could tell she didn’t even mean for it to be threatening in this instance, but Robin took a step backward anyway.
“She is my sister. She is of the North. She is a Stark. It is most appropriate,” Sansa explained to them.
Edmure sighed. “Don’t you think your mother—”
“Do not say what I think you’re about to say, uncle,” Arya warned, eyes narrowed on the Tully lord. He shut his mouth.
Perhaps her mother would have preferred it be a man like Edmure or Robin instead of Arya. But it would not stop Sansa regardless. Her mother would be thrilled to see them together once more, and to see that Sansa had made a match with a good man. “I am glad you are staying for the wedding. And I trust you will both save dances for me at the reception?” she asked, hoping they would still feel included.
“Of course,” they’d agreed, and it seemed to be smoothed over. It was strange, Sansa thought, to have so many of her family gathered here to celebrate her wedding. She wasn’t sure if she’d ever get a chance like this again, for not only her siblings but also Edmure and Robin to be here with her. She would not squander it. She would treasure it, Sansa thought happily.
It couldn’t be a coincidence, Jon thought, when Rhaegal and Viserion returned to Winterfell while Ghost constantly trailed Jon and Sansa’s heels the evening before their wedding day.
“Do you think the dragons sense it too?” Sansa asked Jon curiously as they ventured out to meet them. While they both had a bond with Ghost, Sansa did not know about the dragons’ thoughts and feelings as Jon did.
“I think so,” Jon told her as he rubbed along both dragons’ scales. “They’re happy for us. They understand you’re my family,” he said, looking back at Sansa with a smile. Sansa thought Jon was never so handsome than when he smiled.
“You said it was different than with Ghost,” Sansa remarked as Ghost nudged at her waist, ducking slightly as at full height he stood to her chest. Like last time, Ghost did not seem to find these dragons a threat.
“Aye,” Jon nodded. “With Ghost it’s like he’s a part of me, a part of us,” he said as she scratched behind the direwolf’s ears. “With Rhaegal and Viserion, it is more like they need assurance or guidance. Ghost might be more like a partner whereas they…” Jon trailed off, frowning as he considered it.
“Are they more like children? Should we call you Father of Dragons?” Sansa asked with an arch to her brow.
Jon shook his head and laughed. “No. Not exactly, but there is something paternal about it, I suppose,” he said. Both of them thought of children they might have in the future, and the warmth growing in Sansa had her moving to Jon and stepping into his embrace. “Maybe a bit like grown children ready to be on their own.” Jon said, looking at the dragons with a mixture of pride, happiness, and a hint of melancholy that struck Sansa as more than a little paternal.
“Valyria?” she asked.
“Valyria,” he confirmed and kissed her head. “But they’re here to celebrate with us first.”
“An extended part of the pack,” Sansa said, leaning into Jon’s chest.
“Yeah?” Jon asked with a smile. He hadn’t just abandoned the dragons, even if he felt more a wolf. Sansa realized he craved that acceptance.
“Of course,” she said, and his lips met hers in a soft, sweet kiss.
“Perhaps I could convince you to go on a dragon ride with me?” Jon asked, already knowing the answer.
“Absolutely not,” she laughed. He hugged her tighter.
“I love you,” Jon said tenderly. The weight of her in his arms was the best feeling he’d ever known.
“I love you too,” she said. He caught her mouth again in a kiss that was longer, his tongue stroking against hers until they were both breathless.
“I cannot wait to marry you, Sansa Stark,” Jon said with shining eyes when they pulled apart.
Sansa’s heart fluttered. “And I cannot wait to marry you, Jon Targaryen.”
And as they walked hand in hand back through Winterfell’s gates as it grew dark, Sansa made sure no one was the wiser when they came across her sister and the newest blacksmith at the forge. Jon barely had time to see Arya and Gendry, who were—for lack of a better term—necking, before Sansa pulled him softly along with her, both on their tiptoes and stifling giggles so as not to interrupt them.
“She is happy,” Sansa said as they reached her solar and he pulled her into the room.
“And you, my love?” he asked, pressing a soft kiss to Sansa’s throat.
Sansa looked up at him, blue eyes sparkling and a smile on her rosy lips. “I am very happy.” Jon grabbed her face in his hands and brought her mouth to his, quite intent on some necking of their own.
On the morning of her wedding day, Sansa allows two handmaidens to work with her hair as Arya studies her own appearance in front of Sansa’s mirror. She was delighted to find that Sansa had not made her a dress, but trousers and a quite handsome cloak, if Sansa did say so herself.
“Thank you, Sans,” Arya said, turning to beam at her.
“Of course,” Sansa said happily. For her own part, Sansa had not dressed herself fully yet. Her handmaidens had excitedly taken in the dress, hesitantly running their hands across the fabric before Sansa had shooed them away. She adores the dress and only hopes Jon will feel the same.
Her stomach does a little flip, and it is like butterflies have been nestled there all morning. Truly, Sansa cannot remember the last time she had felt so excited, a spark of nervous anticipation was thrumming through her body. It made her breath quicken and Sansa didn’t need to look in the mirror to know a smile wouldn’t leave her face.
Sansa, Arya, Brienne, Gilly, and the handmaidens were throughout Sansa’s bedchambers as the handmaidens made two small braids around the back of her head. The rest of her hair would stay down, as Sansa much preferred wearing her hair in such a way, the more elaborate updos of the South had fallen out of her favor long ago. And Sansa knew that Jon loved her hair, allowing it to fall in soft waves in a more natural look. Jon, she thought, smiling bigger again. There was a knock at her solar door and the sudden sound mixed with her giddy excitement so that she nearly leaped out of her seat.
It was Jon, she just knew it. She pulled her robe together and made her way to the solar as Brienne, Gilly, and Arya moved her dress from where it would have been in Jon’s sights. It was silly, perhaps, but she preferred he not see it until the ceremony. She wanted to surprise him in the Godswood later.
She opened the door and found Jon who looked upon her with what Sansa could only describe as reverence. He smiled. “You knew it was me?” Jon asked.
She wouldn’t have been the one to answer the door otherwise. “I did,” Sansa said on an exhale. She wanted to leap into his arms though it would not be proper, and in any case, he had one hand behind his back. Sansa had vaguely caught his thoughts on surprising her, and determined not to follow them and spoil it.
“You look beautiful, Sansa,” Jon said with warm eyes studying her face.
She ducked her head, suddenly shy, and wrapped her robe tighter around her. “I’m not even dressed yet,” she said.
“You’re still beautiful,” Jon supplied softly, and she looked back up at him. “I’d marry you just like this or any other way, Sansa.” His gaze was open and earnest.
“Jon,” she whispered with emotion, leaned forward and kissed him tenderly.
“I have something for you,” Jon said nervously as they pulled apart. He pulled the arm from behind his back to reveal a crown weaved with winter roses.
“I know it’s not much, especially compared to your actual crown,” Jon said, rubbing the back of his neck.
“I love it,” Sansa said sincerely, reaching out to his forearm.
“I wasn’t sure if you could wear it to the ceremony—”
“I will,” she said quickly.
Jon beamed at her. “Then might you allow me?” he asked, stepping toward her and holding the crown gingerly above her head.
“You may,” Sansa nodded.
Jon placed it gently atop her head, careful of her tresses and braids. “There,” he said in satisfaction, brushing his fingers across her cheek in a soft caress. “My Queen of Love and Beauty,” he whispered. Sansa saw the slightest build of tears in his eyes, knowing they reflected her own happy tears.
She pulled him against her and kissed him again. His hands were at her waist and he hummed in approval as their tongues met. She really shouldn’t be doing this, Sansa distantly thought to herself, not when the handmaidens and the others could see. But she didn’t care.
“I love you,” Jon said breathlessly when they pulled apart.
“I love you too,” Sansa said.
“Taking all the credit for yourself then, Jon?” Gilly asked with a playful arch of her brow as she approached them.
Jon laughed and looked to Sansa. “Gilly helped me,” he said nodding to the crown.
“Thank you, Gilly,” Sansa said gratefully to her friend.
Gilly shrugged. “It was nothing,” she said humbly.
“Not to me,” Sansa choked with emotion. Sam and Gilly had become dear friends who meant the world to her. She knew Gilly’s acceptance of Jon indicated Sam’s acceptance too.
Gilly looked at Jon sternly. “I’m afraid I must ask you to leave Jon,” she said lightly, bringing a hand to Sansa’s shoulder. “We are not done primping your bride.”
Jon looked at Sansa and gave a squeeze of her hand in his own. “I’ll see you,” he said warmly.
Sansa nodded. “I’ll see you.” Jon departed and Sansa followed Gilly back to her bedchamber, grinning like a fool. At this rate, she figured, her cheeks would be sore before the day was over.
Jon’s breath caught as he watched Sansa approach him in the Godswood, Arya at her side. The Godswood was a bit cramped with their audience, as many wished to see their Queen wed. Yet, they kept it relatively small, knowing the feast would be filled with people. And still, as his eyes met Sansa’s, it was as if they were the only two people in existence. Her cheeks were flushed, from the cold or the attention, Jon could not tell. Sansa was, as always, stunning. Radiant. He still remembered the first time he saw her. How he had been immediately arrested at the sight of her across the courtyard and had to shake off the distraction. He smiled at the memory, now able to devote his full attention to his love, and so Jon looked his fill.
Her dress was a shade of blue gray, paying tribute to her Stark and Tully roots. Her bodice was adorned with white lace accents that resembled the branches of the Weirwood tree, and just above it at the neck were two embroidered wolves meeting. Her elongated sleeves featured red Weirwood leaves that glittered in the light of the Godswood snow. Her cloak draped over one side, accented with Tully fish scales and ending in wolf-like furs at the bottom. And of course, atop her head rested the flower crown he’d help make for her—making her blue eyes even more mesmerizing.
She was magnificent, Jon thought. As Sansa came toward him, he was so enamored with the vision of her that he nearly forgot how to begin. Bran helpfully cleared his throat. Jon looked to Sansa.
I cannot believe this woman is marrying me, he thought.
Believe it, Sansa’s lips twitched as her words rang in his mind.
“Who comes before the Gods?” Jon asked.
“Sansa of House Stark, the Queen in the North, comes here to be wed,” Sansa said, her eyes never leaving his. “Who comes to claim her?”
“Jon of Houses Stark and Targaryen,” Jon said, as they had decided on the wording to include both, “Prince of Dragonstone, comes to claim her. Who gives her?”
“Arya of House Stark, a Princess of the North and sister to Queen Sansa, gives her,” Arya said, and she clutches Sansa a little tighter before releasing her. Sansa moved forward, and Jon took her hands in his own.
“Do you take this man?” Jon asked, feeling his voice quiver in his throat at the emotion of the moment. She was claiming him and he was claiming her, in front of the Gods, her family, and her people. His heart fluttered.
“I take this man,” Sansa said, sounding a bit shaky herself.
I love you so much, Jon told her in his mind, his eyes boring into her own.
I love you too.
They kneeled together at the Heart Tree, hand in hand. Jon did not know much of the Gods, old or new, but he bowed his head. Thank you for bringing me to her. Thank you for bringing me home. Please help me to be the best husband she could ask for.
Sansa prayed to those she loved who were gone. Thank you father, I have found the match you would have wanted for me. Thank you, mother and father, for showing me a loving marriage. Thank you Robb and Rickon, my sweet brothers. I will never forget you. Guide me so we may have a long and happy life together.
They stood together, Jon steadying Sansa at the waist. She removed her cloak and handed it to Arya, and as she looked back, she saw Ghost in a far-off corner, observing. Jon’s eyes followed Sansa’s to their direwolf, and he smiled before looking back to his bride. He removed his cloak, with the Stark colors of white and gray, and placed it around Sansa’s shoulders. Jon pulled her to him and kissed her with all the love, devotion, and affection he could express. Like their first kiss. Like every kiss with Sansa.
The crowd cheered and clapped for them, and Jon and Sansa held onto each other as they made their way inside. Jon remembered the vision they’d shared in Ghost, and Ghost’s own thoughts, which now so echoed his own. Because Jon knew without a shadow of doubt, with his wife by his side, he was complete.
It was as Sansa danced with Jon in the Great Hall later at the feast, feeling light and in love, that her thoughts turned, oddly enough, to Cersei Lannister.
“What is it?” Jon asked with a sly grin, as if they were sharing a joke no one else knew.
“Nothing,” Sansa said, perhaps too innocently, for Jon’s eyes narrowed. He pressed nothing further though, kissing her forehead and gliding her across the room. Sansa would tell him eventually, but now she didn’t feel the need to do so. Fortunately, her thoughts on Cersei were not upsetting her, maybe for the first time.
It was something different she felt now, as her eyes scanned the hall. Gendry had managed to get Arya to dance with him for two whole songs, which was enough in Sansa’s eyes to make him a legend. She saw her little brother Bran and Meera sitting close and talking intimately. She saw various young lords nervously approaching young ladies for a dance and smiled to herself, leaning closer to Jon.
“How am I doing?” he whispered in her ear. She knew Jon felt awkward about dancing.
“Passable,” Sansa joked, and Jon’s soft laugh rumbled against her chest.
“And you would tease your poor husband so?” Jon asked her.
“I’ll make it up to you later,” Sansa whispered to him.
His eyes darkened and his grip on her tightened. “I am looking forward to that,” Jon said huskily, pressing his forehead to hers.
Cersei was wrong, Sansa thought. All those years ago, when she had told her that she should only love her children. When Cersei said that the more people you love, the weaker you are. Perhaps it was because Cersei loved in ways that were selfish or smallminded, or otherwise unhealthy or destructive. But she was mistaken, Sansa realized. Love did not make one weaker. It made one stronger. The more she loved Jon, her family, the North and its people, the stronger she was, the happier she was. Opening her heart had made her a better woman and a better ruler. No, love was not a burden as Cersei thought. Love was a gift. Sansa knew the love she had with Jon was real, true, and strong. And she knew it would only grow, just as her parents’ had, though Sansa and Jon had the advantage of already loving one another. As Jon led her to their seats, it struck her again.
I married for love.
“Jon Stark,” Sansa said heatedly as they stumbled into her (their) bedchambers, and it sent a chill down Jon’s spine as he ducked to litter her neck with kisses. Sansa barred the door only to be pushed against it by Jon in his haste, kissing her with a groan as his hands explored her body.
“Sansa,” he whined in desperation. Jon understood that Sansa was Queen but still, the feast with her people had kept him from alone time with his bride for far too long. Sansa gently pushed him off her and stepped toward the fire. She removed her cloak and placed it on the back of a chair before turning to face him.
Jon swallowed thickly. It hadn’t been something they’d set out beforehand, but now Jon was happy they’d waited, even if it made him more eager to make love to her. “What did you think of my dress?” she asked, running her hands over the skirts.
“Beautiful,” Jon said and moved toward her, capturing her lips with his while settling his hands on her hips. “I only hope it doesn’t have too many laces at the back,” he said and spun her around.
“You will not rip this dress, Jon Stark,” Sansa warned.
“Never, my lovely wife,” he said, pressing a kiss to the back of her neck, causing her to shudder against him. He slowly undid the laces, his breathing growing ragged. “So beautiful,” he whispered reverently as he slid the dress from her shoulders. His eyes and hands traced along her back, her shift was nearly transparent, and as she daintily stepped out of the dress and placed it on the chair, he felt ready to take her now. Jon tried to calm himself, but he reached for her immediately.
Jon licked into her mouth as Sansa let out a soft sigh and melted against him. He squeezed her breasts before trailing one hand down to cup her mound. “Jon,” she moaned, and he nipped at her earlobe.
“I want you so bad, sweetheart,” Jon groaned as he walked her backward. “Will you get on the bed for me, please?”
His cock twitched at her eagerness to follow his request. She sat back against the furs with a coquettish grin as Jon removed layers of clothing until he was shirtless and in his breeches. To feel her skin against his with no barriers…Gods.
Jon nearly pounced on her, earning a musical giggle from Sansa that made him smile. “I’m glad you find that funny, wife.” He kissed her sweet lips before she could reply. “What do you want?” he asked, his nose running along her neck as her hands entwined in his hair.
She pulled him so he was looking into her eyes. “I want whatever you want tonight, husband,” Sansa said.
Jon moaned. “Are you trying to kill me?” he asked as she giggled again, and he quickly removed her shift, kissing his way down her body. He sucked one breast into his mouth greedily as Sansa arched against him, before treating the other breast to the same.
“If you want whatever I want,” he mumbled against her hip as he untied her smallclothes and unrolled her stockings from her legs. “We won’t be leaving this chamber for weeks.”
“Jon!” she looked downright scandalized, pink dusting her cheekbones as he set his mouth to her cunt. Jon had told her the truth before. Nothing had tasted better than her sweet cunt. The way she writhed against him and dug her fingers into his hair had him aching to be inside her. Jon kissed her between her legs until she was cumming with a soft cry of his name and he rutted into the furs beneath them for relief.
Before Jon could blink Sansa had pulled him up her body and was kissing him, thrusting her hot tongue between his lips. He hadn’t even had time to wipe his beard. Knowing how much Sansa must be tasting her own juices on him—the thought made him even harder as he groaned against her. Sansa was unlacing his breeches.
“I need you inside me now,” Sansa said.
Gods. Perhaps she was trying to kill him. “I need inside you,” he moaned. If the breeches had not been made by Sansa, he’d have carelessly ripped them to shreds in his haste, but because she made him such fine clothing, he would spare them. His smallclothes, however…
Sansa’s eyes widened as she heard the rip. “Jon—”
“It’s fine, don’t worry about it,” Jon said and kissed her as he lined his cock along her cunt. “Sansa,” he groaned as he rubbed his manhood up and down her folds, gathering her wetness. She already felt incredible and he wasn’t even inside her yet. She wrapped her legs around him. Neither one of them were maids, Jon knew. It didn’t matter because the two of them together was different. He knew that. She was his mate, now his wife. Now it would truly be an act of love. Jon was only relieved that Sansa would likely not be hurt as he entered her slick heat.
“Fuck, Sansa!” Jon panted into her neck. Her thighs tightened around his hips and she raked her nails down his back, causing him to shudder. “Do that again,” he pleaded and she obliged. Jon held himself still inside her once he was fully sheathed, partially to allow her time to adjust and partially because he did not want to spill right away. It was like he fit inside her perfectly, as if they were made for each other.
She thrusted her hips beneath him and his eyes rolled back. “Jon,” she whined, running her foot along his calf. “Move,” Sansa urged.
Jon kissed her hungrily and began to thrust hard and slow. She pulled his hair and gasped. “You like that?” he grunted. His chest was heaving. The feel of her tight walls wrapped around him was overwhelming.
“Yes,” Sansa cried. “More!”
“Like,” Jon pulled back only to drive back in again, his hips slamming against hers, “that?” he asked her teasingly.
“Yes, Gods, yes!”
Jon repeated the motion and picked up his pace as Sansa met his thrusts enthusiastically. “You feel so good Sansa,” Jon said as he thrust inside her again and again.
“Yes,” she hissed. Her eyes, he noticed, were beginning to roll back.
“Does it feel good Sansa?” he asked. “Do you like my cock inside of you?”
Sansa groaned beneath him. “Yes.”
“Say it, Sansa,” Jon urged, thrusting faster.
“I…I,” she gasped, reluctant.
“Come on, sweet girl,” Jon crooned, his fingers reaching for her clit as he encouraged her. “Tell me.”
“I like your cock inside of me,” she moaned.
“Ahh. Fuck, Sansa,” Jon grunted. He needed to make her cum before he did. “Feels so fucking good inside of you, Sansa. I love your cunt. You’re so wet for me. You need me to fuck you?”
“Yes, Jon, fuck me,” she ordered shamelessly. Jon nearly cums at her words but manages to hold back even as his hips stutter. Jon rubs at her clit harder, finding a rhythm that causes her to buck her hips even more.
“That’s it, sweetheart. My sweet girl. My Sansa. Will you cum for me? Fuck, Sansa! You’re squeezing me so tight. Are you about to cum sweetheart? I want you to cum, Sansa. I want you to cum on my cock,” Jon groaned, driving into her as he felt her pulse around him and it was all too much and soon he was shouting his own release inside of her, throbbing and spasming as they both fell over the edge.
Jon wasn’t sure how long it was after that when their breathing began to sound somewhat normal again. He felt Sansa’s heart beating beneath his own chest. Perhaps he was a romantic after all, as he got the strange sense their hearts beat together in time.
“That was…” he said, at a loss, brushing a lock of her red hair from her forehead. They were both shiny with sweat, though Jon doubted he looked as lovely as Sansa still did, even in her mussed-up state.
“Hmm,” Sansa ran her forefinger across his bottom lip, “it certainly was,” she said with a mischievous glint in her eyes. They laughed together and Jon kissed her gently.
His heart was full. Every night they would sleep in the same bed like this. Every morning he would wake up with her next to him. “I love you wife,” Jon said, and each time he took in the fact that Sansa was wife and he was Jon Stark, he felt as if he was floating.
Sansa leaned toward him with a smile, her forehead resting against his own. “And I you, husband.”