012. One-Eyed Bastard

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Aemma glanced around the halls, feeling as though she was staring at an old friend she couldn't quite recognise. The memories of her as a child flooded into her mind so easily as she walked through the halls, but every memory was an altered version of the reality that lay before her in the present. The stained glass windows that once held mighty dragons and many walls that showed the Targaryen rule were hijacked by symbols belonging to the Faith of the Seven and, in their vast shadow, only whispers of the dragon were seen. Kings Landing truly belonged to the Hightowers. 

The Hightowers were capable of many things but, as she stood at the bottom of the stone staircase with the hem of her dress grazing the bottom step, she knew the Hightowers couldn't steal away memories. Aemma reached down, her fingertips dancing over where her dress hid her knee, remembering the countless times she had flown down the stairs in such a rush it had caused her to fall on the way down, bloodying up her knees just as they were beginning to heal from the last time she had scraped them. She remembered Jace, Luke, and Helaena would check to see if she were okay. She remembered Aemond...

Aemma drew in a breath, shaking the thoughts from her head. She was no longer a child. Never would she allow herself to be as close to a snake as she had in the stupidity of her youth. 

She ascended the steps, having to find her room by herself, considering the Hightowers hadn't even bothered welcoming them on their arrival. Even the stone steps, not having changed since Aegon the Conqueror's time, felt vaguely unfamiliar. 


Aemma paused. His voice had grown considerably deeper in the years. Considerably more commanding. She didn't allow herself to turn to greet him, simply turning her head to the side to catch a glimpse of him. 

"Uncle," Her voice was cool, almost coming off as entirely indifferent. 

Her attempts would've fooled others, but Aemond was always rather good at seeing through her facade and into her true feelings. He ascended the steps slowly, a lion stalking his deer. But Aemma didn't flee as prey did. She was a predator in her own right. 

"You've grown," Aemond noted, reaching the top of the stairs to stand before her. 

With their proximity, Aemma had to tilt her head up ever so slightly to meet Aemond's eye, a move she no doubts believed to be entirely purposeful on his part. 

"As have you," Aemma said, looking pointedly at his eye patch.

The silence between the two was tense, and as servants began to notice the stand-off between the two once inseparable Targaryens, they steered clear of the staircase altogether. No one wanted to get caught in the fire of two dragons. 

"I saw your brothers in the training yard," Aemond said, beginning to circle Aemma, "They didn't appear in the mood to train,"

"Well, I'm always happy to fight you, One-Eye," Aemma said, turning to keep her eyes on Aemond.

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