Fandom: A Song of Ice and Fire / Game of Thrones
Word Count: 1005
Summary: AU-ish. On the way to Winterfell, Myrcella hears of her father's intention to betroth her to Robb Stark and is determined to make Robb like her.
Spoilers: Nothing past S1/AGOT
Myrcella has no trouble picking out her future husband from the crowd assembled in Winterfell. Her father, the king, goes right to Eddard Stark, and Myrcella knows that the boy standing beside her father’s longtime friend is Robb Stark—the eldest of the Stark children and the one her father says she is going to marry.
She is certain he must not be aware of the match, in fact, Myrcella is pretty confident in knowing that, as she takes in the sight of Winterfell, the only other person who knows of her soon-to-be betrothal is her father. Robert told her a few nights ago. She was supposed to be sleeping, but when she couldn’t, she went to see her father. He was likely too far in his cups to remember her even being there, but Myrcella knows her father well. When he says something, he means it.
Robb Stark stands tall and focused beside his father, raptly paying attention to the exchange taking place between her father and his while all the same pretending not to notice. To Myrcella, this means only that he has not noticed her yet.
Determined to make a good impression on her almost-betrothed, the princess waits patiently to meet his eyes and then proceeds to give him the brightest, most sincere smile she can. Her uncle Jaime tells her whenever he sees her that her smile is one of her best features and that others can’t help but smile back. She prays for this to be true as she watches Robb Stark’s impassive face look back at her.
It is very brief, but Myrcella is focused so intently on him that she sees the hint of a smile pass across his face and the slight nod he gives her before her own father diverts his attention.
Myrcella, having succeeded in her goal, then takes in the unfamiliar land of her almost-betrothed. It’s a lot different than King's Landing, harsher and more unforgiving, but there is something about it that calls to her. A little distracted, she gasps when she notices Robb standing in front of her, holding out his arm. She wonders how long she had been standing there, staring off into the distance.
She threads her arm through his, a light blush now adorning her cheeks. She can almost hear her mother’s words in her head; a princess should never be caught off guard. Even still, as her and Robb make their way to their seats for the welcome feast, following behind his little brother, Rickon, she can’t help but smile up at him.
She is seated next to him at the table and starts up a conversation with him. “Tell me about Winterfell,” she says. She listens to him talk about Winterfell and his family and laughs when he says something funny, then responds in kind, telling him of Tommen and his kittens and tells stories about people from King's Landing. It dawns on Myrcella that talking with Robb is much easier than she had feared it would be.
The princess is no fool. She knows full well that her mother’s marriage to her father is not in any way as perfect as they like to present to the public. She’s heard the yelling and the fighting many times before, and she has seen the way her mother looks afterward. Robb Stark is not a king of anything, but he is being groomed to become Lord of Winterfell—a position with some similarities—and when Myrcella learned of her father’s plan, she feared entering a marriage similar to that of the king and queen. Her fears soon abate, for she learns quickly that Robb Stark is not her father anymore than she is her mother.
Toward the end of the welcome feast, Myrcella catches sight of Eddard Stark leaving the room with Robb and quickly turns to her own parents. Robert is watching them leave, grinning like a fool and Cersei is trying to be subtle about her hateful looks directed at her husband.
Myrcella isn’t surprised that her mother opposes the idea of an alliance with the north through her marriage. She was cooped up in the wheelhouse with the queen for most of the journey here—except when she could talk her way out of it, much to her mother’s disapproval—and has heard much about her mother’s hatred for the north. Cersei is hardly bothering to hide her resentment at having her only daughter set to marry into the north, a land so far from King's Landing.
The princess wants so badly to show her excitement like her father but instead shows only a slight interest in the proceedings, knowing she would face her mother’s wrath later if she portrayed too much enthusiasm. Additionally, she has yet to learn Robb’s feelings on the matter and refuses to make hers so obviously known without having some idea of his.
Eddard Stark returns with Robb some time later and Cersei immediately stands up and walks briskly over to her before Robb can even move away from his father’s side. She is being pulled up and guided out of the room deliberately, Myrcella knows, in a very obvious show of anger on her mother’s part. She cannot disobey the queen, however, so she follows wordlessly.
She is aware of every pair of eyes on her retreat, but she only looks at one. Robb Stark stands next to his father, his eyes carefully trained on hers. Her heart was pounding so fast she couldn’t hear much of the rowdy feast happening around her. This was it; the moment when she would know if things were going to be okay between her and her husband when finally they did marry.
Once again, much like when they first met eyes, all she receives is a small nod and a slight smile, but Myrcella is sure it is enough. She smiles widely in answer, and she doesn’t even regret it when Cersei takes notice and yanks her roughly out of the room.
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