“Ser Jaime?” Even in soiled pink satin and torn lace, Brienne looked more like a man in a gown than a proper woman. “I am grateful, but… you were well away. Why come back?”
A dozen quips came to mind, each crueler than the one before, but Jaime only shrugged. “I dreamed of you,” he said.
I’ve always been a terrible priest. Drank too much rum. Fucked all the whores in King’s Landing. It’s a terrible thing to say, but by the time I came to Westeros, I didn’t believe in our Lord. I decided that He, that all the gods, were stories we told the children to make them behave. So I wore the robes and every now and then I’d recite the prayers, but it was just for show. A spectacle for the locals. Until the Mountain drove a lance through this one’s heart. I knelt beside his cold body and said the old words. Not because I believed in them, but… he was my friend and he was dead. And they were the only words I knew. And for the first time in my life, the Lord replied. Beric’s eyes opened and I knew the truth. Our god is the one true god. And all men must serve Him.
“Can I dwell on what I scarce remember? I held a castle on the Marches once, and there was a woman I was pledged to marry, but I could not find that castle today, nor tell you the color of that woman’s hair. Who knighted me, old friend? What were my favorite foods? It all fades. Sometimes I think I was born on the bloody grass in that grove of ash, with the taste of fire in my mouth and a hole in my chest. Are you my mother, Thoros?”
This is too hard, Jon thought in despair. How do I play the turncloak without becoming one?