This was co-written with Westeros.org contributor Milady of York.
As has often been discussed in the Pawn to Player: Rethinking Sansa threads, the cloak is highly significant as a symbol of protection and comfort in Sansa Stark’s arc. In particular: the white Kingsguard cloak belonging to Sandor Clegane, which is missing and unaccounted for after that brief line in ASoS (chapter 6) in which she reveals she “had his stained white cloak hidden in a cedar chest beneath her summer silks.”
Or is it? We now present our favorite theory about what happened to Sandor’s discarded and bloodied Kingsguard cloak, as inspired by earlier work for PtP.
Let’s start by enumerating Sandor Clegane’s cloaks: apart from the Kingsguard one, only two other cloaks belonging to him are noted in the books. In AGoT, we find him associated with a bloody cloak for the first time:
There was something slung over the back of his destrier, a heavy shape wrapped in a bloody cloak. ”No sign of your daughter, Hand,” the Hound rasped down, “but the day was not wholly wasted. We got her little pet.”
It’s to be noted that the colour of this cloak isn’t mentioned at all, though we can speculate that it could’ve been crimson, for two reasons: Sandor is a Lannister man whose liege lady is Cersei, and the Lannister guards and men-at-arms wear crimson cloaks as a sort of uniform, and also because his presenting the cut down body of Mycah to Lord Eddard is reminiscent of Tywin presenting the bodies of the Targaryen babies murdered by Gregor to Robert in a bloodied crimson cloak.
Then, at the Hand’s Tourney, Sandor wears an olive-green cloak when he saves Ser Loras from his monstrous brother:
Sandor Clegane was the first rider to appear. He wore an olive- green cloak over his soot-grey armor. That, and his hound’s-head helm, were his only concession to ornament
AGOT, Ch. 30
This is the only time the colour of Sandor’s cloak is noted, other than the Kingsguard white, and in contrast to the white and the red which are like uniforms, this appears to be his own personal garment.
When he joined Joffrey’s garde de corps, he would give Sansa his white cloak when she was beaten and stripped in public, which is the first demonstration on Sansa’s part that she finds his cloak comforting. The scene in ACoK where Sandor visits Sansa’s chambers after he breaks during the fiery Battle of Blackwater, should be familiar to most readers. When he has taken his song he departs, leaving his discarded cloak behind for Sansa to pick up:
She found his cloak on the floor, twisted up tight, the white wool stained by blood and fire […] She shook out the torn cloak and huddled beneath it on the floor, shivering.
ACOK, Ch. 62
In ASoS, as Sansa flees King’s Landing, she dons a deep green cloak with a large hood in the castle godswood to cover the brightness of the pearls on the bodice of her brown dress.
Dress warmly, Ser Dontos had told her, and dress dark. She had no blacks, so she chose a dress of thick brown wool. The bodice was decorated with freshwater pearls, though. The cloak will cover them. The cloak was deep green, with a large hood.
Interestingly, Sansa has another dark cloak, a grey cloak, which may have served quite well to cover her in this occasion:
Sansa threw a plain grey cloak over her shoulders and picked up the knife she used to cut her meat. If it is some trap, better that I die than let them hurt me more, she told herself. She hid the blade under her cloak
But instead of donning that one, she chose a green cloak. We propose the reason behind this is that it’s the Kingsguard cloak. Sansa has dyed Sandor’s white cloak green to cover the blood stains. We know she has used this tactic to cover “blood” stains in the past; in AGOT we read that Arya hurled a blood orange at her sister in a fit of anger and ruined her lovely new ivory silk gown:
… Arya flung the orange across the table. It caught her in the middle of the forehead with a wet squish and plopped down into her lap […] The blood orange had left a blotchy red stain on the silk.
AGOT, Ch. 44
And when next we see that gown, Sansa has come up with the solution to dye it black; ostensibly as a symbol of royal mourning, but in reality to cover the stains left by the blood orange, and she wears it when she goes before the court to plead for her father:
Her gown was the ivory silk that the queen had given her, the one Arya had ruined, but she’d had them dye it black and you couldn’t see the stain at all.
The answer to the question “why green?” is twofold. First, and on a practical level, bloodstains that have failed to wash out of white fabric can often have a greenish cast, especially with wool or silk, in which case the removal of bloodstains is even harder than for other fabrics, and both Sansa’s dress and Sandor’s cloak are tailored precisely from these materials. Second, Sandor wearing the green cloak at the Tourney occurred the morning after their first significant interaction, so Sansa would have reason to remember his attire that day. Green and brown, with soot-grey are Sandor’s usual attire when he wasn’t armoured. At Joffrey’s nameday tournament he wore brown under his Kingsguard cloak, which wouldn’t be lost on Sansa either:
The white cloak of the Kingsguard was draped over his broad shoulders and fastened with a jeweled brooch, the snowy cloth looking somehow unnatural against his brown rough-spun tunic and studded leather jerkin. “Lady Sansa,” the Hound announced curtly when he saw her.
So the brown dress under the remade Kingsguard cloak is a perfect mirror of Sandor’s garb. The fact that she uses the green cloak to shield herself is so symbolically perfect that the conclusion almost writes itself.
Regarding the parallel of the brown and green color scheme, it’s been noted that following Eddard’s execution, Sandor entered Sansa’s chamber in similar attire:
"See that you bathe and dress as befits my betrothed." Sandor Clegane stood at his shoulder in a plain brown doublet and green mantle, his burned face hideous in the morning light. Behind them were two knights of the Kingsguard in long white satin cloaks.
Sansa drew her blanket up to her chin to cover herself. “No,” she whimpered, “please… leave me be.”
"If you won’t rise and dress yourself, my Hound will do it for you," Joffrey said.
"I beg of you, my prince."
"I’m king now. Dog, get her out of bed."
Sandor Clegane scooped her up around the waist and lifted her off the featherbed as she struggled feebly. Her blanket fell to the floor. Underneath she had only a thin bedgown to cover her nakedness. “Do as you’re bid, child,” Clegane said. “Dress.” He pushed her toward her wardrobe, almost gently.
AGoT, ch. 67
Finally, following his flight from King’s Landing and seizure of Arya and reminiscent of the soot-grey armor from the Hand’s Tourney, a similar color scheme:
The big bad-tempered courser wore neither armor, barding, nor harness, and the Hound himself was garbed in splotchy green roughspun and a soot-grey mantle with a hood that swallowed his head. ASoS, ch. 50
We don’t think it’s an accident that these colours are repeatedly associated with Sandor Clegane. Sansa mirroring Sandor’s colours in her choice of attire during her flight from King’s Landing is, for us, a sign of great significance rather than random chance.
On the matter of the hood, we don’t know for certain that Sandor’s white cloak had a hood or not, but it’s likely that it didn’t since ceremonial cloaks were of the “cape” type and generally didn’t have hoods. We would suggest that if it did not, although Sandor most likely ripped a strip from the bottom of it to use as a bandage (“Sansa heard cloth ripping…”), we should remember that he stands well over a foot taller than Sansa, so it was a large piece of cloth and it’d be easy for a young lady known to be clever with her needle to cut a cloak down and fashion a hood from the pieces.
During the period between the Blackwater and her marriage to Tyrion, Sansa spends quite a bit of time with the Tyrells. Even as Cersei orders a new wardrobe to be made for her (a gown, smallclothes and hose, kirtles, mantles and cloaks…) Sansa and the Tyrell girls:
…spent long afternoons doing needlework and talking over lemon cakes and honeyed wine […] Sansa wondered what Megga would think about kissing the Hound, as she had.
With the confusion of a team of eighteen seamstresses working in her chambers and the Tyrell girls to provide camouflage, surely at some time during this interval Sansa could have found the means to remake the cloak. One poster even noted that the Tyrell color is green, so how easy to use flattery to obtain the necessary dye to disguise her keepsake!
There is an inverse parallel between Sansa using her needle to create a shield and Arya’s use of Needle as a weapon. Sansa uses her shield to protect or hide her Stark identity, while for Arya her Needle represents her Stark identity. This inverse parallel is typical of the complementary arcs of the two girls throughout the story.
As a closing thought, it’s noteworthy that after Sansa reveals that the cloak has been hidden away under her summer silks, she doesn’t think of it again until this passage:
As the boy’s lips touched her own she found herself thinking of another kiss. She could still remember how it felt, when his cruel mouth pressed down on her own. He had come to Sansa in the darkness as green fire filled the sky. He took a song and a kiss, and left me nothing but a bloody cloak
This indicates to us that she has the cloak still, since she doesn’t mention what became of it nor give any indication that it is lost to her. Since we know that she only took one cloak with her as she fled King’s Landing, we shall now say with confidence, quod erat demonstrandum.
As discussed in Radio Westeros Episode 02 — Sansa: A Song of Innocence featuring special guest Brashcandy from the Pawn to Player: Rethinking Sansa project.
A collection of my favourite A Song of Ice and Fire stories, all of which come highly recommended.
A modern mafia AU and my absolute favourite Sansa/Sandor fanfic. Dark and gripping, it’s everything that attracts me to these two characters. Painstaking in its detail and thoughtful with dialogue and character development, this story has the most intense atmosphere of any fic I’ve ever come across. The writing is dense and rich but never overpowering, and the smut is scorching hot. Plus, it has an absolutely brilliant, intricate and well thought-out plot. I love it!
Another modern mafia AU, this is written mostly from Sandor’s POV and contains my absolute favourite characterisation of him. I loved the fact that each chapter started and finished with a little snippet of Sansa’s thoughts, with the rest of the story being given over to a wave of Sandor’s anger and lustful, angsty battles with his shifting moral compass. An underrated gem.
A Sansan fic of epic proportions that is an absolutely brilliant exploration of the duality of the Hound/Sandor Clegane. Even more amazing is the fact the Kimberlite8 turned it into an illustrated fanwork. It’s probably the most stunningly beautiful piece of fanfiction I’ve ever seen. Extremely NSFW!
Possibly the most intense description of Sansa/Hound sexual tension that’s ever been written, plus stunning characterisation to boot.
A fantastic one-shot featuring a drunk Sansa and her sworn shield. There’s a hint of deep sadness in Sansa which is so perfectly canon it makes me want to cry, but the atmosphere and dialogue is wonderful.
Angst. Don’t read unless you want your heart broken, but to be honest you should really read it anyway.
A new favourite of mine that features the dark, delicious characterisation of Sandor that I prefer. A fantastic premise as well, and I really enjoy the introduction of Stranger as AI.
These two fics are quite short, but pack a punch. I read them both when I first came into the fandom a few years back, and they were so beautifully written that I’ve never forgotten them.
These two little fics are the kind that I adore - the kind that I could print out and sellotape into the books because they’re so spot on. Both are set in ACOK and feature that fascinating Sansa/Hound dynamic that called out to me when I first read the books. The part in ‘A Walk in the Garden’ where Sandor takes a bite out of Sansa’s apple (literally!) from the exact place that she bit into it… a subtle hint of the simmering tension between them. Absolutely fantastic.
Pretty much all of Redcandle’s stuff is an immediate recommendation from me. She has a masterlist on her Livejournal here.
This is a real Sansa/Sandor tour de force, that weaves fanon and canon so effortlessly. I really enjoyed the progression of their relationship in this fic, plus the insertion of a little Jaime and Brienne didn’t hurt!
I’m not really one for fluff, but I fell for this story hook, line and sinker. It has an overwhelmingly swoon-worthy romantic vibe and a very original premise… plus Sansa is such a cutie that it’s impossible to resist.
One of the first smut pieces I read for these two - with the twist that Sandor is the virgin - this is well-written and believable. Sadly it’s no longer available on sansaxsandor, but I managed to find its original posting as an anonymous fill on Robellion.
A brilliant fanfic that features possibly my favourite trope of all time: arranged marriage! This time Joffrey gifts Sansa to the Hound, and their wedding night is so hot just thinking about it gives me shivers!
I really like this because it’s a Sansan fic written from Sandor’s POV and I adore those. I love the idea of Sansa really pushing Joffrey from the wall in AGOT and Sandor having to steal her away. The evolution of their relationship was deft and believable, as was Sandor’s bitterness and self-loathing.
A great one-shot, full of sweetness and longing. Plus, it features my favourite closing sentence of all time.
Extremely well-written with excellent characterisation, The Lion Dormant is a post ADWD Jaime/Brienne master class in awkward sexual tension. Be warned: it hasn’t been updated in a very long time, and probably won’t be.
Jaime and Brienne are married, the Lord and Lady of Casterly Rock. A little fluffy but well worth a read thanks to its wonderful dialogue.
A short snippet, but one of the first J/B fics I read, and I remember it fondly. Canon-compliant.
My favourite ASOIAF fanfic is, weirdly, a Ned/Cersei masterpiece. Completely stunning in all aspects, especially plot and characterisation, this is one I read again and again. Give it a go, even if you believe Ned/Cersei isn’t for you. This fic will change your mind!
Guys, I’m dying chocked by the insane amount of paper in my house, so I’m trying to sell off a bit of old stuff!D: Hope someone will be interested even if the pieces are a bit dated by now!XD Also, it’s summer sales, so prices are extra low (plus I could really use a bit of money right now, so if you want to take a look at my commission page you’re welcomed!)
This is an old SanSan of mine! Gods, I do love Sansa Stark and Sandor Clegane!*heart*(also my fanart are all book versions as you can see!)
This watercolor + ink piece is made on light rough paper, size is of 24x32cm and i’m giving it away for 17euros (22$) + + 3,50 (4,50$) for the shipping costs (I’m covering half of that myself!:D).
If you’re interested or if you have any further question you can drop me a note, my inbox is always open!:) Thank you for reading!
For the first one, it’d be great if Sandor was pursuing Sansa to kill her as his superior race uses human bodies as a resource - or something just as gloomy and impersonal - but finally decides to keep her as his little play thing…
Its ideas that this that make me want to marry you maroucia. I’d pay to read a space opera like this! Set in a galaxy with the baroque/futuristic style that David Lynch created with Dune or the kind of beautiful corruption that you see in the artwork of Agostino Arrivabene And with lots of sex between Sandor and Sansa of course!
kimberlite8 reblogged your post and added:I loved reading your About Me zsra187. Your Your writing style is so conversational and charming, I feel like I’m right there listening to you chat. Its hard to conceive of you as struggling with anxiety as you seem so at ease when you’re blogging for the benefit of internet strangers.
Why thank you ma’am! Yes, I’ve been told before that I write exactly how I talk. I didn’t realise there was any other way to write!
Yeah, it’s almost hard for me to conceive too. At the moment it doesn’t affect me at all (except for the odd few seconds of anxious worry that crop up at random intervals), and the fact that I feel so ‘back to normal’ now, almost makes me wonder whether the two months of absolute hell I went through even happened, or whether I just made it up!
Hah, just kidding ;-) Of course, I know that it did happen, and it was really horrible. But I’ve worked really hard at overcoming it and trying to get on with my life. I went to therapy and that was an amazing help. So right now, I feel totally fine and completely at ease. But if you’d asked me nine months ago, it would have been a whole different story.
But actually (sorry, can’t stop talking!), you mentioning that I seem ‘so at ease’ is funny, because I’ve found that one of the things I was excellent at when I was really in the depths of anxiety was to completely mask it and convince people that I was totally fine. I remember I would go to university and be outwardly normal to all my friends and teachers (while inside I was a wreck), then rush home and spend the evening with my family shaking and in utter hysterics. I don’t know if anyone else with crippling anxiety manages to do that. I just know that I did, at that point.
Omg, this has turned into the most depressing story ever! I’m so sorry, lol. You just got me thinking with your comment and once I get thinking, I just talk and talk and talk and talk…. :D
I didn’t realize it was so recent! As recent as the time you’ve been in fandom. Its amazing to me that someone is vivacious as you struggled with the kind of anxiety I can’t even imagine all the while achieving your professional goals. You’re incredible!
Oh wow! Thank you anon! I’m so flattered that you enjoy my fics and are asking me what I would like to read. There’s a few fanfic ideas that have been squatting in my brain for awhile but I’m not the writer to do it. I’d would die of happiness to see them come to life:
Pursuit Predator Scifi Sandor: He Ran But Not Very Fast
There’s a fascinating tumblr post that explains how humans are extraordinary predators on earth due to our ability to outlast our prey and to heal from wounds that would be mortal to other animals. Extrapolate this to a galaxy where other sentient species are not descended from hyper-specialized pursuit predators and we’d be a warrior caste to be feared. Of course Sandor would be at the apex of this warrior caste as he’s survived being both burned to the bone at age 7 and the battle wounds he received from Beric Dondarrion and Gregor’s rats. Then there’s also his quote about Mycah: “He ran but not very fast.”
Artwork by koryface
Terminator Sandor: Come With Me If You Want To Live
Inspired by this artwork from manzanachan
Warging Sansa: Wolf-Sansa
Inspired by this quote from Wolf-Alice by Angela Carter:
Nothing about her is human except that she is not a wolf; it is as if the fur she thought she wore had melted into her skin and become part of it, although it does not exist.
Sansa’s a bird by day, Sandor’s Stranger by night.
A beautiful woman with alabaster skin and the eyes of a dove. She travels by night, only by night. Her sun is the moon. And her name is Sansa
haha! i hope this happens! what would be the type of cheese?
In the labour class we attended today, the instructor mentioned that when I go to the hospital, I should bring a focal point with me - something small I can concentrate on that makes me happy and calm.
Me: So what should be my focal point?
The husband: Maybe some cheese.