I Don't Own Naruto or Game of Thrones!

Blood & Vengeance - Chapter 8


The call of the eagle was loud, and Naruto didn't need to look to hone its location. He focused on the narrow pathway ahead that was run-down my hundreds of horses and hunters before him, gripping his reins tightly as his horse galloped deeper into the forest. The thick canopies covered the land in tendrils of shadows, and through the slits of sunlight, Naruto straightened his bow. It was high-time for hunting, both for men and beasts. The eagle soared freely in the skies, and began its descent to the earth.

A small clearing was a little distance away, and the knight loosened his feet from the saddle stirrups. Just as his horse burst into the clearing and the sun was once again full, he jumped from his stirrups and stood tall on the saddle. Planting his left foot on the saddle, he used his right to hook onto the reins. Leaning his body back, he pulled the reins back with his right foot, halting his horse into a high angle. Seeing the eagle as a small dot under the sun, Naruto strained his arms to retract his bowstring back as far as possible. With a small exhale, he released his fingers, and his arrow pierced the skies with a silent hiss. It seemed that the woods ran silent until the call of the eagle was shorten by an arrow puncturing its body.

A smirk fell upon his face as he effortlessly untangled his footing and swiftly sat upon his saddle.

Boisterous laughter came from behind the young knight, and he turned to give a curt bow. "That's the fifth one, Your Grace."

King Robert's face was red from fine wine, but his riding was still steady as he rode alongside his young sword. "Never a dull day with you around, Naruto." A slight gesture of the hand was all the King needed for several of his guards to ride off and retrieve Ser Naruto's prize. "If only you were born a few decades sooner. You would have been a terror to fight against, and an honor to battle alongside."

Naruto gave a gracious smile, "You flatter me, Your Grace."

"Nonsense!" Robert have Naruto a hard pat on his leather-armored back, "I never flatter, boy. I only give credit when credit is due." The King finished his bota-bag's worth of wine and threw it back at his young Lannister squire, "I'm surrounding by these useless shits all day. You don't know how relieved I am to see that young men can still ride and hunt these days. I've almost begun to believe that all there's left are these soft and scrawny worms!"

Choosing to ignore the slight glare from the King's squire, Naruto smiled. "Thank you, Your Grace. I must say that I am glad to leave the capital for a few days. It has been a while since I've had the chance to let loose and hunt. Counting funds and signing papers everyday can really take its toll."

"To the Seventh Hell with counting coppers!"

For the past two days, Naruto had been accompanying his King in his own homeland, the Stormlands. Having no more tolerance in the capital, the King demanded a leave to his family land for a hunt. It was a quite a rash decision, and Robert left with nearly none of his King's Guard. Only Ser Barristan Selmy was allowed to follow. Though the King had personally gave Naruto a few days of absence from his duties with Jon Arryn and Princess Myrcella. Robert wanted to find out how skilled Naruto really was at hunting, and he was not disappointed.

"Robert," came the informal call from Renly Baratheon, the King's younger brother and Lord of the Stormlands. "Sunset will be upon us soon; shouldn't we return to Storm's End?"

Robert didn't even give his brother a glance as he sighed, "It seems the Gods make time go faster when it is good." Finally turning back to meet his brother, Robert gave Renly a small nod. "Come on, let's ride back. Have the servants send some nice girls to my chambers." The King rode past his brother, "Also, find a nice virgin for Ser Naruto – my treat to him."

Naruto quickly responded, "Sorry, Your Grace, but I must decline."

The King raised a brow, "Are you sure? Girls from the Stormlands are quite exquisite."

"I noticed, Your Grace." Naruto smiled when he thought of a pretty ladies he saw when he rode into Storm's End; he enjoyed the view of them walking toward and away from him. "But I'm quite tired today, and a quiet evening would be best for me."

"Alright, but don't waste your youth, Naruto."

The King rode off into the woods, his men hastily following after his horse, leaving Renly behind. "My brother, the King. Hard to believe he actually forged his own dynasty, isn't it?" The King's brother climbed onto his own horse, which looked rather large for him. According to Jon Arryn, Renly looked very much like a young Robert, despite being shorter and far less built. At the age of seventeen years, he stood at the same height as Naruto, who was two years his junior. "He is more of a whoring drunkard, now days."

The knight simply chose to bow at the Lord of the Stormlands, "Thank you for your hospitality, Lord Renly."

Naruto rode off into the winds, following his King back to Storm's End. The sun was setting faster than he had expected, and the skies were already waves of orange and blue by the time he retreated to his personal quarters. The chill wind had returned from the night, and it felt quite refreshing after a day of heavy sunlight upon his armored back. Shrugging his light leather armor off, the young knight stretched his arm and back before stepping into the fresh bath. It had truly been quite some time since he had been so active, and his muscles were a little sore.

Resting his back against the stone bath, Naruto sighed in relaxation as the hot water eased his body. He had grown up using the small bath his aunt had in their farm, which was always cold. Sometimes he would even use the rivers and stream close to home, but his time in King's Landing had spoiled his habits. Sitting in the bath, Naruto couldn't help but recall the first time he had used such a luxurious bath – his first night with Arianne.

Simply thinking of the Dornish Princess brought a smile to his face and a slight hint of arousal to his body. Arianne was a goddess in mortal form. Ever since they parted, Arianne would visit him constantly in his dreams, usually once again back in the bath. He would forever be blessed with the images of the water sliding down her damp body; her lush black hair clinging to her olive skin; her full, pink lips parted and swollen. In quiet nights, he could still hear her euphoric moans, smell her intoxicating scent, and feel her loving warmth.

It had almost been a year since his beautiful lady left King's Landing, and almost been a year since he had been working for Jon Arryn. Aiding the poor in Flea Bottom had been a slow and arduous process, but the results were surely positive. The Hand of the King had successfully started eight new orphanages in the city, all with proper housing detail and basic education systems. They were all placed near road with the most traffic of the City Watch, and with the extra orders given to them by the Hand, they didn't dare overlook any crimes near the area. Slowly but surely, Flea Bottom was changing, and given time, it could very well no longer be a slum.

"Ser Naruto?" came a voice from his door, breaking him from his thoughts. "The King has sent me for you. Dinner is prepared and you are to join the King in the Grand Hall."

Naruto stood from the bath, "I will head to the Great Hall right away."

Shivering at the chilling air, Naruto dried himself quickly and slipped into some of his casual clothing. Jon Arryn had his squire procure nearly a mountain of clothes for Naruto. The Hand was persistent that as the King and the Hand's personal Knight, as well as the Sworn Protector of Princess Myrcella, Naruto had to at least dress respectably without his armor. So now the young knight wore a light pair of silk, black britches, a dark blue tunic decorated with golden tread, and a simple black doublet. His feet felt much better after the quick soak, and fit comfortably in his tall leather boots that reached to his shins. Brushing a hand through his damp blond hair, Naruto made his way to the Great Hall.

Storm's End lived up to its reputation. The age-old Storm King built a stone fortress that not even the gods could tear apart. Through the stretching hallways of stone, its grandiose was comparable to the Red Keep, despite being less ostentations and more militaristic. Strings of portraits hung proudly in the halls, each showing a proud moment of the Storm Kings and their march into the Riverlands. Some even depicted the battle with the Ironborns. But in the end, it was King Robert's victory over Prince Rhaegar Targaryen at the Trident. It was then the large double door leading to the Grand Hall opened and revealed King Robert, looking almost nothing like his depiction in his portrait.

"Come join us, Naruto!" The King was already looking redder than he was during the hunt, "The lamb is exquisite."

The Knight took a seat adjacent to the King and across from Lord Renly, who looked more annoyed at the sight of his pig-like brother. Ser Barristan Selmy was sat next to Lord Renly, eating his share quietly and without words. The elderly man had barely uttered a word since the hunt had started, but was always attentive and vigilant to his duties around the King.

"Thank you, Your Grace." Naruto happily joined in on the food; after a long day of hunting, he was quite famished. The lamb leg in front of him was quite tempting, and seeing how the King was not giving a care about etiquette, Naruto let his new habits slide. Reaching for the leg with his bare hands, he bit into it, savouring the tender meat. "This is delicious."

Robert gave a laugh, "That's it! Why can't more men act like you, Naruto?"

"I try not to eat like this back in King's Landing, Your Grace." Naruto laughed as he washed down his food with some wine, "Lord Hand is teaching me to act proper in front of nobility, especially since I have to fine with Princess Myrcella so often."

"Ah, good old Jon never changes."

"In all honesty, I enjoy eating like this." Naruto recalled his memories of sharing a meal with some sell-swords in Slum Bottom, some of the most casual and relaxed men he had met in King's Landing, and how free and relaxed he felt eating with them. "Etiquette is important, but sometimes food tastes better like this."

"Yes, exactly!" Robert knocked Naruto's glass with his own, "Finally, someone who shares in my tastes."

Renly sighed and delicately wiped his mouth, "Excuse me, gentlemen. I'm finished."

Robert rolled his eyes as his brother left the room, not even finishing his wine. "Dear Seven, he may look a little like me, but he acts like a prissy little shit most of the time." He finished his glass of wine and his squire quickly refilled it, "You know, I don't think he's even hit another man, let alone kill somebody."

Naruto finished his lamb leg, "That does tend to change a person."

"Don't think he's ever fucked a girl either."

"That changes a person even more," replied the young knight with a small chuckle.

The King laughed and patted his knight on the shoulder, "So you have been with a woman! Good job, boy. Enjoy your youth and the beauty of the girls around. They don't last forever, and certainly doesn't last long." Naruto nodded along with the King's words and refilled his plate with some venison, some of their triumphs from the day's hunt. "Next time we visit the Riverlands, we have to get you a nice girl. You aren't a real man until you've bedded a Riverlands girl." Robert shot Naruto a look, "Or do you have a particular inclination toward Dornish girls?"

Naruto smiled, "I do find them very attractive."

Robert laughed again, "Yes, I remember your little moment with Prince Doran's little daughter. What was her name – Arianne?"

"Yes, Lady Arianne is perhaps the most beautiful woman I have met."

"You've got good taste, my boy!" The King threw his finished rib onto his plate and leaned back against his chair, "But that young lady working with you and Jon right now is quite the flower as well. In a few years, she might give your Lady Arianne quite the challenge."

"Lady Margaery…yes, she is also quite the lady."


Flashback

After a long day's work in the eighth orphanage they had built by the order of the King's Hand, Naruto was finally able to relax with a small glass of chilled milk with honey. After ordering the builders around for nearly a month and yelling over the loud building site for the entire day, his voice was heavily strained. Luckily, the rain had stopped and the wooden planks were dried enough to be used. The building was nearly completed and Lady Margaery had found the final teacher they needed for this orphanage – a nice septa from the Vale.

Resting back against the stone pillar, Naruto watched the sun disappear beyond the horizon.

But then he felt something beneath his foot. Looking down, he found a book. It was leather covered book that was quite well-bound together by golden thread; looked far too expense a book to the found anywhere in Flea Bottom. Flipping it open, Naruto immediately noticed how neat and immaculate the penmanship was and the ink was still a little damp. It was just a series of notes about the water ways in King's Landing and how far each vendor of various products were from a series of places.

'Hmm, who could have left this here?'

Just then, the front door of the orphanage was swung open and Lady Margaery stepped in looking quite out of breath, and strangely without her guards and handmaidens.

"Good evening, Lady Margaery," started Naruto as he closed the book in his hands, "It's almost night fall. You should come here by yourself with no guards to protect you. Is there anything I can help you wi-"

The knight was swiftly interrupted when the sweet and kind Lady Margaery sped up to him and kicked him hard between his legs. Even with his ever swift reflects, he would never expect Margaery to attack him, and he nearly buckled over when the pain spread from his groin all the way to his throat. He groaned and nearly fell to his knees, but the lady had her hands on the collar of his doublet and pushed him against a stone pillar.

"L-Lady Margaery," muttered Naruto while wincing, "Why did you do that?"

"You were reading this book, weren't you?" she asked coldly and without her usual sweetness, her voice low and hushed.

"Well, yes."

Slowly, Margaery released her grip on his clothes, but didn't back away. "Ser Naruto," she said with her usual smile and happy voice, "Please, can you escort me to the storage room again?"

She wasted no time to grab onto his hand and pulled him along to the storage area of the orphanage, the largest room in the building. Naruto decided to follow along; it was clear that something was bother Margaery, a lady with whom he had become quite good friends with in the past year. It was quite unsettling, though. The girl was always kind, sweet, polite, smiling. He had never once seen her angry, even when people were rude to her or when she fell into the mud. For her to physically attack him – something must be really bothering her.

The storage room had no chandelier or any candles, so it was dark, and after she slammed the door shut, only a sliver of orange sunlight slipped through the cracks.

"Lady Margaery, what's wrong?"

In the darkness, Naruto couldn't see the girl, but definitely felt her when she leaned into his body. "Did anyone but you read this book?" Naruto was still holding onto the book with his free hand as he shook his head.

"No, I just found it moments ago."

"But you read it. You opened it and read it, didn't you?"

Margaery was quite developed for her age, and Naruto felt all of it against his chest. "Yes, I did, but only because I wanted to see what kind of book it is. It looks far too expensive to belong to anyone here." He leaned back and tried not to feel so much of his lady's body, "It's safe to assume that this book is yours, but I don't know why you're so angry about it."

"What did you see?"

"Nothing!" cried Naruto quite loudly, "I just saw something about the water ways and something about the distances of vendors."

"You didn't read any more than that?" she asked carefully.

"No! That was when you came in and I stopped." Naruto gently grasped her shoulder, which surprised him a little since her silk garments were quite think and he felt her warm and soft skin. "I'm sorry I read your book, but I didn't know it was yours. For what it's worth, I didn't read anything personal." Naruto felt Margaery step back a little and breathed a sigh of relief. "You don't have to worry about anything, my Lady." He reached for the door and pushed it open, finally letting in the sunlight.

But then he saw her. Margaery was trembling and tears fell from her eyes; her lips were quivering and she was barely able to hold back from sobbing.

"My Lady…" he whispered and stepped closer to her. "Please, tell me what's wrong."

"It's nothing, Ser Naruto." Her voice was back to normal, but it was clearly forced.

"Margaery," he called her name for the first time, "I promise that I didn't read anything." He gently placed a hand on her cheek and brushed away from tears with his thumb. "Don't cry, please don't cry." He tucked the book into her hands and she hugged it close to her chest. "It's alright. Everything is alright." Very gently, he pulled the girl into a hug, and she finally let out a small sob into his chest. "Everything is alright, Margaery."

It was a few minutes later that Margaery pulled away from the hug, her eyes still red and watery. "I'm sorry, Ser Naruto. Please forgive me."

"There is nothing to forgive, my Lady." Naruto smiled, "You are strong for a girl your age, but it takes more than a kick to hurt me."

Margaery gave him a small smile, and it felt more genuine than before. "Thank you." She wiped her eyes dry and fixed her clothes. "Please escort me back to the Red Keep. I believe the Princess is expecting both of us for dinner."

"As my Lady commands." Naruto opened the door for Margaery and followed closely behind her, but with a slight limp in his step. He was most definitely bruised down there.

Flashback End


"What are you thinking about?" The King's voice broke Naruto from his memories, and he turned to see Robert giving him a grin. "You're thinking about what she'd look like in a few years, am I right?"

Naruto rubbed the back of his head, "Yes, Your Grace."

"You've got a great taste in women, my boy. But you have to work harder. Before long these girls will me of marrying age, so you better do something great so Prince Doran or Lord Tyrell will consider you to be worthy of their daughters."

Naruto laughed it off as a joke and continued eating, all the while wondering what Margaery had written in the book that day. What could have possibly been so terrible that she was forced into tears? Margaery had always struck Naruto as a strong and calm young woman; never had he once imagined that she was hiding such fragility. Nonetheless, the young Lady Tyrell had since regained her cheerful and optimistic demeanor. Not once, did she ever bring up that fateful day.

The King finished nearly half the lamb before he sighed in content and finished the rest of his wine. "That was good. And there is nothing better than a woman after a nice meal." He stood from his seat, making Naruto and Barristan follow along. "Enjoy the rest of your meal, gentleman. I am off to my chambers. My ladies await."

The two men waited until the King was out of sight before sitting back down. "The King is quite enjoying your company, Ser Naruto."

Naruto was surprised to hear his senior speak to him, "Yes, Ser Barristan." He wiped his hands and mouth clean before turning to face the man, "I am honored His Grace and His Lord Hand have given me such opportunities. I am deeply grateful."

"They see something in you," muttered the old man while he sipped on his wine, "Perhaps something they both once had."

"Ser?"

"You have the will." Ser Barristan refilled Naruto's glass, "It is a rare sight in King's Landing. Everyone in that city is either trying to lie for power or lie for gold. You actually seem to care about the people, about the livelihood of the common folk. Lord Arryn have been trying to improve Flea Bottom for a long while, and he's finally found someone to help him." The old knight chuckled as he finished his drink, "Not to mention that you are a skilled fighter, something that King Robert once was. Meeting you has been quite refreshing for both of them."

Naruto smiled, "I am only going through the motions." The young knight leaned onto his elbows on the table, "I've heard about nobility and the politics that they play, but I've never thought about being a part of it. As refreshing as you suggest I am, I am merely trying to figure out how to speak and act in front of these people."

Barristan laughed, "You are refreshing for me as well. It's been a long while since I've met a competent knight who wouldn't shiver at the sight of blood. These days all we see are the sons of Lords and Princes. They've never once had an arrow shot in their direction. It is good to see some hot blood in the mix."

"You flatter me, Ser."

"My body isn't what it once was, and I am quite tired." The Commander of the King's Guard stood from his seat and stopped Naruto from standing when he saw him move. "Please enjoy yourself. And do not hesitate to come to me in times of need. If Lord Arryn need any help in Flea Bottom, he will have my full support."

"Thank you, Ser."

"Good night, Ser Naruto."


The ride back to King's Landing was quite uneventful. The tall trees in the Kingswood blocked the warm sunlight, and once they've cleared the trees, dark clouds filled the skies and rain fell heavily onto the caravan. King Robert had retreated into his carriage to escape. The water had turned their leather armor heavy and damp, with a cringe worthy noise at every move of the arm. So with the kind invitation of the King, Naruto retreated into the carriage as well.

"Damn this carriage!" grunted the King, "Good times never last."

Naruto smiled and refilled the King's wine. "Your council awaits, Your Grace. We've been away for nearly five days and work must be piling up."

"You're spending way too much time with Jon." Robert sighed and leaned back to ease his full belly, "The old man has to learn how to rest once in a while. Still as strong and stubborn as a bull, that one. It is a shame that sons aren't always like the fathers." The King poured himself another drink, "Jon named his boy after me. Robert Arryn, the heir of the Vale. Last time I've seen the boy, he was still asking for his mother's teats. Almost six years of age, that boy. What were you like at that age?" asked the King, almost rhetorical.

"I've killed a man." Naruto took his own drink as Robert gave him a stare.

"Life is tough on the smallfolk, I know that." Robert scoffed, "I've wanted a strong son myself. Someone like me, someone strong and tough, someone like you, boy." Naruto was surprised and figured that the King had drank even more than he thought. "Joffrey, that little beast. He's nothing like me. He's more like his mother. He's nearly a young man now, but still hiding behind his mother's skirts all the time. More than once I'd thought of forcing him into the Kingswood alone, forcing him to survive on his own, to toughen him up. But I know what his damned mother would do if I did."

"The prince is still young, and a King doesn't necessarily need to be physically strong." Naruto saw how old the King looked; it was beyond his years. "As long as he is just and benevolent with a wise council behind him, the realm will prosper."

"We'll see about that."

Naruto cleared his throat and focused on his wine.

"But the damned boy does have his usefulness." Robert smirked, "His Nameday is nearly here and I've decided to throw a tourney." Naruto looked up at his King, surprised. "I know the usual thing the small council says to me, that a tourney is costly to the crown. But so many Lords and shits came to King's Landing and they all spent quite a bit of gold. Since we can expect much more people to come to this tourney, it might be possible for us to actually make profit."

The Knight chuckled, "I better enter my name as soon as we're in the city."

Robert laughed, "Don't worry, I've already entered your name the day I gave the order." The King smacked Naruto's shoulder, spilling his wine a little. "You're not only expected to compete; you are expected to win." The King leaned back with a smirk, "This won't be too different. The Archery and Melee have always been the same. But the Joust, everyone will either be targeting you, or avoiding you. Most people don't have the resilience of the Mountain, and if you hit them like you did that monster, they'd die instantly. But I'm sure that some older and more famous knights will try to best you."

"My life has become far too political lately."

The King's laugh was loud. "Welcome to King's Landing, boy." Naruto smiled and poured another drink. "It's not only if you win the tourney, but what will you do after. We've already received word from Dorne that Prince Doran is ill and won't be attending, and neither will any of the Dornish Royal Family."

Naruto couldn't help but frown; he so wanted to see his beloved Arianne again. "Is the Prince going to be alright?"

"Yes. The ravens had said that the man has come down with a slight illness and is bedridden for a while. He should be fine. Don't worry, there are always more event for you to see your Dornish Princess." Robert laughed again at his knight. "What you should be thinking about, is when you win, you will you crown the Queen of Love and Beauty?" The knight groaned and rubbed his temples, "Princess Arianne isn't going to be there, and you have to pick someone."

"Do you enjoy tormenting me, Your Grace?"

The King only laughed.

King's Landing was finally in sight after another few hours of travel, and Naruto was once again riding on his horse. As usual, the gates of the capital were swarmed with traveling merchants and villagers. But once the Royal Caravan was in sight, dozens of Gold Cloaks created a large opening and blocked everyone from around the gate. Everyone was on their knees as the King's carriage passed them by, and no one dared look up. Naruto have each Gold Cloak and nod and spearheaded the entrance into the city.

But the moment he made it into the city, Hugh came running for him.

"Ser Naruto!" The squire ran alongside Naruto's horse, lest he delay the King's carriage. "Lord Arryn and Lady Tyrell requires your assistance as soon as you're free." The King looked out from his carriage once he heard. "Some drunk soldiers stormed into one of the new orphanages!"

Naruto's eyes were wide and the King growled. "Go with him, Naruto."

"Your Grace?"

"Report to Jon, and come report to me once you've found out what happened."

"Yes, I will head there straight away."


The End!

Sorry for such a boring chapter after such a long hiatus. I'm really back into the Game of Thrones mood lately and tried to get this plot back into my mind. Unfortunately, this is a necessary chapter for the plot to move forward. Don't worry, the next chapter will come out soon and it will have much more action!

PLEASE LEAVE ME A REVIEW! XD