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Jon Snow ran through the crowded halls of the Great Keep, "wait Arya!"
"You can't catch me!" the little girl laughed in joy as she ran between the feet of the servants walking through the hall.
"Wait-sorry," Jon apologized to a woman carrying a basket of eggs who he nearly knocked over, "sorry, excuse me," Jon struggled through the crowded halls as he tried to catch up to his little sister, which is easier said than done when surrounded by busy workers.
"Watch where you're going Snow!"
"Watch it boy! These candles are for the Lord's chambers!"
"I swear Snow you will one day break my toes if you keep this up!"
There was a reason for all this fuss, for the past few weeks the entire castle had been one busy mess. The King was coming to Winterfell in a month's' time, and Lady Stark wanted to make a good impression, she had ordered all her children into doing specific things in order to prepare for the king. For the boys that meant getting a good shave and a reminder in the art of etiquette, for the girls that meant extra classes with the Septa.
And Arya, being the little rebel she is, refused to stay in a room with her sister and the Septa for more than an hour. This was why Jon was currently chasing the wild little thing all around the Castle, he needed to get her back in Septa's class, before Lady Stark finds out and assumes Arya skipped because of him.
"You're getting slower in your old age Jon!" Arya chuckled as she ran into the courtyard with the ends of her dress and shoes dirtied by the mud.
"Old age, I'll show her old age," Jon grumbled as he ran outside and into a full sprint, no longer restrained by the small corridors.
"You can't catch me!" Arya yelled out as she ran into the around with her full speed, but Jon was quickly catching up thanks to his longer strides. Arya looked around for a place to run into, the First Keep was closed, so was the broken tower and she was very uneasy about the Godswood. That left only one place to go, The Crypts.
"You'll never take me alive!" Arya yelled out as she charged into the crypts of the castle.
John's eyes flew open, "oh my Gods she did not do that," he cursed his luck as he chased after her running down the stairs into the deep underground tunnels.
The light from the sun outside slowly died away as the torches took its place. Jon walked carefully as he reached the first level of the underground structure.
There were rows of tunnels going underground the castle. Most of them were empty, the reserved burial spot for Jon's siblings and their descendants. However further inside were rows of statues bathed in the orange light of the torches lining the tunnel.
"Arya?" Jon called out, just then he heard her voice giggling. He looked at the left and then to the right, he spotted her shadow in the corner of the right tunnel running away from him. He sighed and rolled his eyes, 'I just know this is going to end up being my fault.'
Jon quickened his pace walking towards Arya, "Arya I swear if I end up being blamed for you missing classes I will never sneak you sweets again!"
"You don't mean that Jon!" Arya yelled out, "you're not that cruel!"
"Try me!" Jon grumbled. He didn't run, if he did that Arya would just be encouraged to run, and the last thing he needs is her twisting her ankle in the dark.
As he walked past the burial sights of his ancestors Jon passed an examining eye over them. Each was a Stark, and through they were represented only by stone Jon could tell they shared common features, such as their jaw structure and their grim frowns.
However as he looked across the grim faces he noticed one statute that gave an actual smile. The moment Jon saw it it made him pause. He didn't understand why, but the smile made him feel something he didn't know he could feel down here, happiness.
The statue was off Lyanna Stark, his aunt. She looked beautiful, if Jon squirted he swore he almost saw Arya looking back at him. She wasn't like all the other statues here, she didn't seem as grim or as cold, if anything she felt like a lone summer's wind that got lost in winter.
"You'll never find me Jon!" Arya cried out as her footsteps went further and further away. Jon sighed, he quickly sent a small prayer to his aunt and quickly turned to chase after Arya once more.
He reached the end of the tunnel and turned left, there he saw two paths, one featured another tunnel behind the one he just came through and the other was dark set of stairs that lead to the level below this one.
'No...no she wouldn't have,' Jon looked at the path leading down and prayed to the Gods that Arya wasn't foolish enough to run down there.
Jon's father, Lord Stark, had ordered the servants to only light the torches on the top level of the crypts. The levels below this was shrouded in darkness with no torches to light the way.
Jon then noticed something, a small glow light present at the bottom of the stairs. 'Maybe someone didn't realise what father meant and had light up the torches on the lower levels as well.' Jon sighed, if that was the case then Arya would have definitely gone to the lower floor, meaning he would have to go down there as well.
Jon carefully felt the steps with his feet as he walked down. His footsteps quickly became distant, echoing off the walls of the first level.
Arya quickly popped her head out from behind one of their ancestor's statues. She looked confused, "Jon? Where are you going?" She looked around, but couldn't find him anywhere.
Jon quickly reached the second level of the Crypts. The tunnels here were warmer, almost unnaturally so, but Jon didn't mind, strangely enough he was unbothered by the heat, an ability the average Northern didn't have.
"Arya? Stop hiding and come out you silly girl, you are going to get into so much trouble for this," Jon grumbled as he walked down the long winding tunnel. He looked at the torches, they seemed old, very old, but they were lite, something which would be impossible given the state of the wood. Jon was confused, but it wasn't really important.
He looked around but he couldn't find Arya. He listened, but the only sound he heard was the sound of his footsteps and his own heart beating.
The statues around him now looked colder, fiercer. They each had a wolf at their side along with one sword propped up against their thrones and another one across their laps. It was believed that the sword across their laps would prevent their spirits from returning to life, a sort of barricade against the dead. Jon however didn't what the second sword was used for. The wolves could just be decorational, but the second weapon was a mystery.
Slowly as Jon moved deeper and deeper into the tunnel he noticed that the statues had a new accessory. On the brow of each statue was a crown, the same crown. It was an open circlet with nine spikes in the shape of longswords. Jon knew that type of crown, he remembered the Maester talk about it before, it was the type of crown worn by the old northern kings, meaning that all the statues he saw before him belonged to the old kings of the North.
Jon felt a spark of respect and fear take hold in his heart. He didn't know why, but he felt small under their gaze. Maybe it was because he was a bastard, maybe it was because he didn't belong here in this dead gallery of kings, but either way he knew that he didn't wish to be here any longer than he needed to be.
"Arya? Arya where are you?" Jon cried out as he began to walk faster searching for his half-sister frantically.
Quickly though he reached the end of tunnel, the end of the crypts. He stared at the wall in front of him and slowly panic started to seep in. He turned around and looked, and for a second it seemed like all the statues had their heads turned to him.
Jon blinked, and suddenly everything was normal, the statues looked forward with their icy gaze in place, nothing seemed to have moved, not even the cobwebs formed on the statues.
'I'm going crazy,' Jon ran his hands through his hair, 'that must be it, I've gone mad and this will be where I die.'
Jon decided turn back and go and get Rob to help him find Arya, but as he was about to leave he felt something cold crawl up his spine.
Jon turned around so quickly he heard his spine crackle. He looked at the wall at the end of the tunnel, he could feel the cold sensation came from it. He knew he should have been worried, he should have been running away, he was sure if it was anyone else they would do just that. But Jon couldn't, he needed to know why he felt this, why this was happening.
In all his years his father had never once mentioned this part of the Crypt. Not once. He would have too since it was filled with the bodies of the old Northern Kings. Jon remembered once Bran asked his father about the old kings, surely Jon's father would have mentioned this place in passing at least?
Jon examined the wall, it was plain, brick layer. Nothing special about it. But then he noticed something, something unusual. Around his shoulder height was a small hand sized opening. It was triangular in shape surrounded by old northern runes. Jon squinted his eyes at them but couldn't make out heads or tails of them.
But just below the runes were words carved out in the common tongue, 'let the song of ice and fire sing through these halls and be blessed by the King of the North'.
Jon didn't understand what it meant, he also knew off no song by that name. And even if he did he doubt he could sing it, Jon had….a very difficult time with music. He was not only tone deaf but also very forgetful when it came to the lyrics.
Jon peared into the triangular hole and tied to see what was inside. It seemed that it was long enough for him to fit his whole fist in there, but nothing more. Suddenly something glittered in the back of the hole, something golden.
'Is that a coin?' Jon wondered as he quickly reached in to pull it out. The moment he wrapped his hand around the coin shape cut him drawing blood.
"OW!" Jon immediately drew back his hands and shook it causing blood to drip everywhere. He looked and saw a long cut along his middle finger. It was very shallow, brought out only a few drops of blood. "Shit, stupid Jon, stupid, sure just stick your hand in a mysterious hole. That's using your brain."
It didn't look that bad, it should close up in a few days, but Jon didn't want to risk an infection. He turned to leave, he needed to see Maester Luwin right away, but as he moved the wall started to rumble.
"What the-" the solid pieces of stone slowly started to rise up. The entire corridor was shaking as Jon felt a gust of cold wind come through from the other side of the wall. It feed into the warmth of the Crypt causing them to mix seamlessly.
Slowly the wall disappeared into the ceiling revealing a new chamber unlike the Crypt behind Jon. It was circular with a large statue of a man in the center. Jon gasped in amazement as he slowly walked into the new chamber.
The entire room was litee up by a beam of light coming from the ceiling. Jon didn't understand how sunlight could fall all the way down here, but he couldn't argue with his own ceiling was studded with blue mosaic tiles depicting what looked like the Wall, a giant ice structure that stretched across the room's top.
The walls had a mural, it featured the Wall once more with men in black, The Night's Watch Jon would wager, fighting what looked like an army of white skinned blue eyed monsters. He saw the battle rage on across the walls of the chambers, finally ending with the blue eyed monsters being pushed back behind the Wall and the black brothers standing watch over them.
Jon then finally looked at the giant statue in front of him, the statue had his head bowed, unlike the other Northern kings who stood tall and proud, this man looked humble and strong, like he had nothing to prove. On his head was the crown of the Northern Kings, bigger than the others.
A Giant wolf statue stood at the side of the man with a stone sword laid across his lap. He had no second sword, which was strange as all the others did. Jon however couldn't make out what the man looked like, his face was far too hidden. He stepped forward and bent down looking up at the bowed head.
His face was covered by shadows formed because of the light coming down directly from on top of him. But as Jon got closer he saw more and more of the statue's face, and suddenly as gasp escaped his lips.
This man, who Jon suspected was the first Northern king, looked exactly like him. He had a full beard and a scar riddled face, but other than that they looked exactly the same. And to add wood into the fire that was this mystery, the man did not frown or glare like the other kings, no, he had a smile on his face, something that no one other statue in the Crypt possessed. No statue, expect Jon's aunt, Lyanna.
'W-what the hell is going on?' Jon asked himself as he stepped back from the smiling king's grave. He looked around and he noticed for the first time something behind the statue. He quickly walked around the first king of the North, all the while keeping a wary eye on it, the fact that he looked like his ancestor shouldn't be all that surprising, after all many people say Jon looks like his father, but this level of accuracy….it was unnerving.
Jon discovered an altar present behind the statue. It was a plain stone slab with a giant painting hanging on top of it. The painting featured the First Northern King, Brandon Stark, the man that looked like Jon. Or maybe it was Jon who looked like him?
Either way the resemblance unsettled the Bastard, it really did. He swore if Lady Stark ever found out about this she would kill him, she already hates the fact that he looks more like his father's son than any of his children, if she found out he looks like the first king of the North….Jon shivered from the implications.
Jon then looked to the stone slab before him, it may have been an altar of some kind, maybe even a shrine for well wishers to leave tokens for their departed king, but now it was bare. Bare, except for a single steel band.
It was of a simple design, steel with a red ruby and millions of tiny runes etched into it's surface. There were ripples along the band, it looked similar to the ones Jon saw present on his father's Valyrian steel blade, Ice. It was in one word, beautiful.
Jon picked it up and looked it over, it didn't have a single blemish on it, in fact it looked like it was just recently crafted, hell there wasn't even a smudge of dirt on it. Jon looked closely at the runes etched along the steel and tried to understand what they said, but once again he failed, miserably.
Jon looked at the painting and noticed King Brandon wearing the exact same band on his right hand. This surprised Jon greatly, this meant that this band belonged to Bran the builder, a man literally drawn out of the age of heroes. He was the man who built the very castle he lived in, the Wall in the North, even the castles at Storm's End!
Jon was in awe at everything around, him. A small part of him was happy, he was called a bastard all his life only to find out he was more of a Stark than any of his other siblings. He looked like the very first Northern King and in his hands was an object owned by the same king!
He felt pride, he discovered this place, him, no one else. The Bastard did it. Jon Snow did it.
A sense of self worth came into him, he felt proud about this accomplishment, he felt proud of himself. Maybe this was the world's way of telling him that he wasn't a waste, that there would be great things in store for him. Maybe he was born with this face to achieve legendary things just like his ancestor did, maybe it was a sign, a promise of greatness.
'Maybe I should complete the look,' Jon told himself as he looked at the steel band. He smiled as he slid it on his wrist sliding it down his forearm. It was very big for him, Brandon was a grown man, and a big one at that. Jon was still young and growing, it didn't fit him perfectly, but hopefully that would change in time.
Just then the runes of the band started to glow. Jon's eyes nearly popped out of his skull when he saw the band slid down his arm and shrink itself just below his wrist.
"AH!" Jon cried out in pain as the band tightened itself around his arm. It felt like a clamp was about to crush his bones into dust, but just as it came it left. The bracelet adjusted itself fitting Jon's arm like a glove.
Jon quickly tired to remove it but couldn't. It was too small, he couldn't wiggle it off of his hands. It was stuck, Jon had just stuck what could be the oldest artifact ever known to the Seven kingdoms on his hand.
Just then something new happened. Something amazing. The runes on the band started to glow again, they glowed red and then blue as suddenly Jon felt a burst of energy explode out of the band. He felt something pass through him leaving behind what felt like little balls of pollen. He didn't understand it, but it felt like something was stuck inside his body.
And then the bracelet's energy reversed itself. Jon felt the small objects in his body being ripped out flowing back into the steel bracelet. The ruby on the band started to glow blue as it lighted up displaying a blue surface directly in front of Jon. On the surface were words and numbers with a full sized portrait of Jon next to it all.
The Bastard couldn't believe what he was seeing. It was like magic. The screen came out of the jem on the band, every time Jon moved his arm the blue surface moved with it. Somehow this things came out of the band Jon was wearing. And if that wasn't strange enough, what Jon read on the blue panel was;
Title- The Bastard of the North
Level- 1 Exp- 0/100
Allegiance - House Stark
MONEY- 0 Gold 0 silver 0 bronze
The son of Rhaegar Targaryen and Lyanna Stark. Jon has been raised at Winterfell in secret by his uncle, Ned Stark. Jon has always been shunned because of his status as a bastard and hated by many as the physical representation of Ned Stark's disloyalty. Jon has always strived to find his place in the word and seeks to become his own man away from the shadow of the Stark family.
Targaryen born - Immune to fire, 20% reputation bonus with dragons, Dragon dreams perk. + 1 Int per level.
Wolfblood - Immune to the cold, 20% reputation bonus with wolves, Skinchanging perk. +1 Str per level.
The Bastard of the North- -10% reputation to all people of noble birth.
Player's Mind(Passive) Lv-MAX
Allows user to calmly and logically think things through. Allows peaceful state of mind, immune to psychological status and effects.
Player's Body(Passive) Lv-MAX
Grants the user a body that allows the user to live the real world according to the status he possess.
Dragon Dreams - You will have semi prophetic dreams. 30% chance of said dreams happening
Skinchanging - You can take over the body of anyone who you have a level 70 reputation with
'The son of Rhaegar Targaryen and Lyanna Stark. Jon has been raised at Winterfell in secret by his uncle, Ned Stark.'
'No...no this can't be true!' Jon didn't believe it. He couldn't believe it! He didn't even understand how this is happening in the first place. How did this thing even know his name?! Let alone how it could know who his parents were!
Plus if what this thing was true then that meant Jon was not the son of Ned Stark, no, he was the nephew of Ned Stark. Arya wasn't his sister, she was his cousin, same for Robb, Bran, Rickon, even Sansa.
Jon didn't understand, suddenly his place in the universe had been thrown into the air. Was he even really a Stark? Or was he…...was he a Targaryen?
Jon looked at his profile once again, this thing displayed him perfectly, every hair strand, even the clothes he wore. He didn't know how it knew, but it did. It was right about that….could it be right about his parents as well?
Jon couldn't believe what he was reading. He read it over and over again. The numbers were strange, Jon didn't understand their importance, but he knew they were about him. The skills were….strange, Jon didn't quite understand them as well. What exactly is a 'Player's body'?
And then there were the perks, so called abilities that Jon didn't believe he had. He knew what skinchanging was, old Nan had told plenty of stories about those kinds of people, he just couldn't believe he was one of them.
And then came the Dragon Dreams, apparently Jon could also tell the future now. For some reason.
Jon needed to know, he had to know. And just then;
Find out the truth about your parents!
Find proof about your Targaryen side: 0/1
Find proof about your Stark side: 0/1
A life of misery
Do you accept?
Jon was amazed at what he was seeing. And quite honestly he couldn't believe it. 'Did, did I just obtain a quest? Like the kind a knight would get from a king? Like the kind that is supposed to reward the one who completes it with precious things like land and such?'
Jon couldn't believe it, but yet again the steel band worked its mysterious powers giving him something he didn't think was possible.
But Jon wasn't worried about that now, no he was far too focused on the aspects of this quest he just received. He needed to know if this was the truth, if Lyanna Stark really was his mother, if his father-Eddard, if he was in fact his uncle and not his father. He needed to know, this just provided a guideline for it, something useful, but ultimately just a tool.
Jon didn't know what to do now. He wanted to accept, but how? 'Maybe I must speak it?' He cleared his throat, "I accept."
He waited, but nothing happened, the blue quest screen remained. Jon forced, "okay...then maybe," he lifted his left finger and pressed the 'yes' option. The screen then suddenly disappeared leaving Jon staring at the now deactivated band.
Jon blinked, 'is that it? Am I done?' Jon shock the band around his hand trying to activate it once more, surprising the now red gem did not change in the slightest. Jon rubbed it carefully, he wasn't sure what exactly he was dealing with here but either way he was excited.
Right now he had a chance to find out who he really was, this whole trip was worth just the one clue he got about his mother and father. Just the one, and if it happens to come true….then it would mean the world for him.
He also needed to figure out what how this thing on his hand worked. The better he understood it, the better he could use it, he would be a fool not too;
Find out the features of the band
Things to figure out;
+10 Exp per item completed
Locked out of the Gaming system
Do you accept?
Jon immediately pressed yes. This was going to be an amazing experience, he could just feel it. But just then Jon's happy thoughts of self discovery were muddied as he realised something, "I have to find Arya!"
Jon quickly walked out of the room. He turned and bowed to his ancestor, it was because of him this was all possible. Yes, it was strange bowing to a man who looked exactly like you, but Jon didn't seem to mind.
He quickly then walked out of the chamber and into the hall of previous kings. This time the statues looked like they were less grim, more respectful. Their gaze did not promise pain but respect, the kind Jon gave his father everyday.
As Jon reached the set of stairs leading to the top layer of the Crypts he heard the stone wall on come down closing the chamber from all. Jon was worried, he wanted to go there again, if not for the amazing things inside then for simply having a place where he could be alone.
Jon quickly reached the first layer of the Crypt and ran out, if Arya wasn't there he would need Robb's help to find her, maybe even a few men.
As Jon ran passed the stone statues he noticed passing the statue of Lyanna. He immediately stopped and stood in front of it. Now instead of seeing it as just a grave marker for his aunt, he saw it as the final resting place of his mother.
He saw that smile, that warm carefree smile, and immediately his heart throbbed with a feeling he understood was love. He cried, freely and openly. His mother was so beautiful and she was right here, all along, right in front of his eyes, and he never noticed.
He reached out and touched the cold stone face of the statue, "I'm sorry mother," Jon sniffed, "I'm so so sorry." He didn't know why he felt like saying that, but…..but he just felt that it was the right thing to say. Like a part of him, a small yet loud part of him was screaming out, 'this is your mother!'
Jon didn't want to stare too long, he needed to find Arya, who looked so much like his mother…...maybe that was the reason he loved her so much? 'No,' Jon shock his head, 'no I love her so much because she's my sister...possibly my cousin.'
So with a heavy sigh Jon pulled himself away from his mother's statue. He sent a silent prayer for her soul, he never had a reason to pray for a person's soul before, now he did. After promising to himself to visit once more Jon took off to the exit, intent on finding Robb.
Jon ran up the stairs and stumbled into the day night, spending so much time in the Crypts caused his eyes to adjust to the dark, now they were adjusting back to the daylight.
He blinked away the temporary blindness and as he was about to set out looking for Robb he heard someone call out, "Jon!"
Jon turned to see Robb and Arya running towards him with a few guards trailing behind them. Jon was stunned still, floating above their heads was a name, a title and what looked like a two different numbers.
Arya Stark, Underfoot
Robb Stark, Heir of Winterfell
Just then Arya ran into his arms holding her brother tightly, "I'm sorry! I'm sorry! I'm sorry! I'm sorry!"
Jon snapped out of his daze, he looked down at his little sister;
Jon stammered, "f-for what?"
"For making you get lost in there!" Arya cried as tears started falling from her eyes.
Jon shock his head as he turned to Robb who was content with standing back and watching his little sister ball her eye out, "Robb?"
"Well the little wild wolf here thought you got lost chasing her inside the Crypts," Robb scoffed, "she wouldn't let me go until I helped look for you. What were you doing in there anyway?"
Jon began to speak when Arya cut in, "h-he was lo-looking for me," she spoke between her tears, "I-I ran away from Speta and Sansa, I d-didn't want to-to stay for the extra class. I'm so sorry Jon!"
The Bastard of the North chuckled as he held his sister close, he patted her on the head, "it's okay Arya, everything will be fine. I didn't get lost in there….I was just looking at the graves."
"Really?" Robb raised an eyebrow, "looking at the graves?"
Jon nodded, "yes...have you noticed that Arya looks a bit like aunt Lyanna?" Jon bent down and wiped away Arya's tears. The little girl threw her hands around John's neck and hugged it tightly. The young man carried his sister, maybe cousin, in his arms held her close as she sobbed.
"Well now that you mention it...yes, maybe," Robb stroked his chin, "etherway we'll talk about it later. We have to get Arya to her classes, now. If not mother will find out and that won't be good for anyone."
Jon nodded in agreement as the three children of the North quickly walked inside the Great Keep. But as Jon was about to enter the castle he turned back once more and looked at the Crypts. He swore he saw a figure inside looking back at him, a figure with long flowing hair and a gentle smile that sent a warm feeling into his heart.