Psh, haters gonna hate.
R e d a n d W h i t e
The grounds of Winterfell were beautiful. Davos had never seen snow like this before. Of course he had lived through winters and springs and summers and falls, but there was nothing quite like a winter in the North. He would never forget this day, not until the day that he died. That day was close – he could feel it in his bones – but it was not his day. No, today belonged to someone else. It belonged to Stannis Baratheon.
When Davos first found his king on the ground, propped up against a horse’s corpse, he had been relieved. But when Stannis had looked up at him, he’d pulled his hand away from his side and revealed a fountain of blood coming from a wound.
The world hadn’t looked so beautiful then.
“My king,” the words escaped from his mouth in a puff of fog. It was so cold here that he was sure every word froze as it wafted through the air. Davos collapsed to his knees next to his king. He ripped the cloth from a dead knight near him, trying to staunch the wound, but Stannis waved him away.
“It’s done, Lord Seaworth.”
Davos shook his head determinedly, pressing the cloth against the wound, trying not to pay attention to the way the blood seeped right through it and over his gloves. The hot blood warmed his hands up. He could feel his phantom fingers itch, desperate to fix his liege lord, but he would be able to grow his fingers back before he could patch up this wound.
“A maester,” he said stubbornly, “you need a maester.” Davos sat up and called out, “A maester immediately for—”
Stannis grasped his arm weakly, but it was strong enough to stop and pull Davos back down on his haunches. “It’s done. I am spent. Too much blood has spilled from me; and I cannot even get up. Even if I were to live, I would be too weak to do anything.”
He wasn’t supposed to die. He couldn’t die. Stannis had lived through so many things. He had lived through things that no man should have been capable of living through. Davos couldn’t help but wonder if Stannis would die because the red woman was not here to protect him with her magic. But no, her god had no power in the North. This was a place for the Old Gods, and the Old Gods took all and everything. They were fair and just. These were the gods that Stannis should have gone to. Perhaps they would have helped him then.
“The war has been won, Your Grace.”
Stannis smiled, but it was humorless and dead. Already dead. “Of course.” He grimaced as a bolt of pain went through his body. Davos felt the urge to do something, but there was nothing to be done. “You will put Shireen on the throne. It is hers by rights after I am dead.”
“Who will be Regent, Your Grace?” Davos realized they had never truly spoken of what might happen should Stannis die. Despite the fact that anyone could be killed and kings were dying all around them and Stannis went into every battle, veryone had expected that he would live. They had talked once of what might happen, should he die, but he’d only said that Shireen would take the throne. They had never once thought of what might happen after that.
Stannis’ grip on his arm tightened. “You.”
Davos blanched. “Your Grace, I…I cannot. I am a simple man. I have only now just learned to read. I…I would make a terrible Regent. You must pick someone else.”
“I already made the documents.” This took Davos off guard. When had that happened? As if knowing his thoughts, Stannis continued, “I made them after you left for White Harbor. I never changed them, even after you had died, and when you returned, with Rickon Stark…” He coughed and blood seeped out of his mouth. Before Davos could do anything, Stannis wiped it away the heel of his free hand. “Shireen and Rickon…they must… It must be done. She will understand. The North and South…”
“Your Grace, please, someone else, I cannot…”
“You are a good man, Davos,” Stannis said, closing his eyes and sighing, “and an even better father. Shireen deserves that, and so does Westeros.”
His last breath escaped him as the red sun glittered on the snow.
Winterfell was a beautiful place in the winter. White, so white, and gray – and red, terrible terrible red.