A Feast for Crows
Alayne Stone has apartments in the Maiden's Tower; they are large and more lavish than the little bedchamber where she had lived when Lady Lysa Arryn was alive. She has her own dressing room and a privy of her own, and a balcony of carved white stone that looks off across the Vale.
As Gretchel is tending to the fire Alayne pads barefoot across the room and slips outside. The stone is cold against her feet, and the wind is blowing fiercely, as it always does up there, but the view makes her forget all that for half a heartbeat.
Alyane has the Vale before her, its forests and rivers and fields all hazy in the morning light. She thinks that the way the sun is hitting the mountains makes them look like solid gold.
The snow-clad summit of the Giant's Lance looms above her, an immensity of stone and ice that dwarfs the castle perched upon its shoulder. Icicles twenty feet long drape the lip of the precipice where Alyssa's Tears fall in the summer. A falcon soars above the frozen waterfall, blue wings spread wide against the morning sun.
She rests her hands on the carved stone balustrade and makes herself peer over the edge. She can see Sky 600 feet below, and the stone steps carved into the mountain, the winding way that leads past Snow and Stone all the way down the valley floor. She can see the towers and keeps of the Gates of the Moon, as small as a child’s toys. Around the walls the hosts of the Lords Declarant are stirring, emerging from their tents like ants from an anthill.
- Alayne Stone, contemplating the view from the balcony