Summer Ship: The Ballad of Dany and Yara (Part 2)

Dany shoots up and rapidly starts getting dressed.

“We’re late for the Small Council Meeting.”

“They can wait,” Yara mumbles apathetically, but stands and dresses all the same. Dany slips into an elegant, floor-length silk shift of pale jade. Yara laces up a pair of soft gray pants and pulls an ivory tunic over her head, strapping on her boot knives and sword before reaching the door.

“I don’t think you’ll need weapons,” Dany observes.

“You never know.”

Later, in the small Council chamber, Dany gravely studies a piece of parchment. Yara paces apprehensively.

“Is it the sweating sickness?” Dany asks.

“We don’t know. It’s a plague of some sort; that’s certain.”

“Where?”

“Westerlands, near Lannisport. Some say it was brought over the Sunset Sea; others insist it’s a Lannister curse.”

Yara snorts. “The Lannisters are well and truly trounced. They will cause us no trouble. Except for you, Tyrion. Of course. You are endless trouble, but it’s the kind of trouble we like.”

“What about Ser Jaime?” asks a Councilor in a squeaky, tentative voice.

At Jaime’s name, the color drains from Tyrion’s warped little face. There is no love lost between Tyrion and Cersei. She had tried to kill him many times. But Tyrion loved Jaime and Jaime loved Tyrion, but no force in Westeros could stop Jaime from loving Cersei.

“He took his Oath. He’ll spend the rest of his days with the brotherhood rebuilding the wall and mourning the ruin of the great and powerful Lannisters. When my siblings and I die, there will no Lannisters  left to curse anyone.”

“And what about you?” Yara asks “Your children could take the Lannister name.”

Tyrion smiles sadly. “I don’t think that’s going to happen.”

“Don’t be so cynical, Tyrion. You’re a good man, Hand of The Queen, Hero of multiple Battles. You’ll find someone.”

Lady Mormont clears her throat politely.

“So, has this new malady been contained? Do we have an antidote? Because my territory, like almost everywhere in Westeros, has been greatly weakened by the great wars. We cannot survive a plague.”

Ser Jorah grunts harshly.

“Here here. The people are tired, they’re hungry, they want peace. This weather,” Jorrah gestures disapprovingly at the sweltering hot air. A brutal heat wave had struck the Seven Kingdoms three weeks before, and shows no signs of abating “is a breeding ground for an epidemic.”

Tyrion nods. “I know. Thus far there are 17 afflicted, all in the Westerlands. It seems relatively contained, and we’ve instituted a quarantine to keep it that way.”

Dany sighs. It hurt her heart to know that her subjects were quarantined away, waiting to die. But leadership meant making unsavory choices for the common good.

“Let’s move on, shall we?” Yara says, sensing her wife’s ennui. “I don’t suppose there’s any good news?

“It’s almost the Midsummer Festival, and the people are excited, not to mention long overdue for some merrymaking. We’ve allocated a generous budget for wine, ale, and feasting. Everyone in the Seven Kingdoms will join in the festivities.”

Yara beams. “That’s more like it. I’m excited to celebrate with my lady. What else?”

Tyrion’s lips turn up into a sardonic smile. “Brienne of Tarth has returned from her sabbatical. I believe at this very moment, she and Arya are engaging in a rigorous mock duel by the stables. They’ve acquired quite the audience.”

Dany stands.

“Let’s join them, shall we.”

The group proceeds to the practice ring to greet their old friend.

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