Val kissed him lightly on the cheek. “You have my thanks, Lord Snow. For the half-blind horse, the salt cod, the free air. For hope.”
Their breath mingled, a white mist in the air. Jon Snow drew back and said, “The only thanks I want is—”
“This is farewell, then,” she said, almost playfully.
In the prior chapter on his way back from the godswood swearing in the new recruits he thinks:
Jon glimpsed the red wanderer above, watching them through the leafless branches of great trees as they made their way beneath. The Thief, the free folk called it. The best time to steal a woman was when the Thief was in the Moonmaid, Ygritte had always claimed.
Here is the description of Val as she's getting ready to set out for Tormund:
The light of the half-moon turned Val’s honey-blond hair a pale silver and left her cheeks as white as snow. She
took a deep breath. “The air tastes sweet.”
and Mormont's raven refers to Jon as "Thief"
“Thief,” Jon said, as the bird flapped up to the lintel above the door to devour its prize.
“Thief,” the raven agreed.
So you have Val looking like a Moonmaid and Jon being called a Thief.
Here is where Ygritte tells Jon that he "stole her":
“I feared you’d do the same once. Fly back to the Wall. You never knew what t’ do after you stole me.”
Jon sat up. “Ygritte, I never stole you.”
“Aye, you did. You jumped down the mountain and killed Orell, and afore I could get my axe you had a knife at my throat.
Jarl, Val's plaything, was killed after he sets out with Jon and the Wildlings to scale the Wall. During the battle where Stannis attacks, Jon draws his sword to guard the tent and this is viewed at least by Stannis as capturing Val.
I have not forgotten that it was you who brought us this magic horn, and captured Mance Rayder’s wife and son.”
“Dalla died.” Jon was saddened by that still. “Val is her sister. She and the babe did not require much capturing, Your Grace.
Val asks Jon while flirting with him:
"Before I go, one question. Did you kill Jarl, my lord?"
"The Wall killed Jarl."
"So I'd heard. But I had to be sure."
"You have my word. I did not kill him." Though I might have if things had gone otherwise.
"This is farewell, then," she said, almost playfully.
I'm not sure if The Wall killing Jarl counts or if Val even cares since she flirts with him before and after the question. The circumstances are still fairly parallel.
It is also curious that Val, the woman who coined the term Ser Kneeler, (which still cracks me up) has taken to calling Jon "Lord."
is mine, Lord Snow
“You have my word, Lord Snow. I will return, with Tormund or without him.” Val glanced at the sky. The moon was but half-full. “Look for me on the first day of the full moon.”
“You have my thanks, Lord Snow. For the half-blind horse, the salt cod, the free air. For hope.”
“Before I go, one question. Did you kill Jarl, my lord?”
Mance says that he met Dalla on the road but never says he stole her. Not sure if that matters. Jon has taken over for Mance as the person trying to help the Wildlings hide behind the Wall. Would Val be inclined to view Jon the same way her sister viewed Mance?
ETA: ARYa_Nym had a good catch with an exchange between Jon and Val when she comes back with Tormund.
“Have you been trying to steal my wolf?” he asked her. “Why not? If every woman had a direwolf, men would be much sweeter. Even crows.”
“Har!” laughed Tormund Giantsbane. “Don’t bandy words with this one, Lord Snow, she’s too clever for the likes o’ you and me. Best steal her quick, before Toregg wakes up and takes her first.”
But that bridge had been burned a long time ago, and Jon himself had thrown the torch. “Toregg is welcome to her,” he announced. “I took a vow.”
“She won’t mind. Will you, girl?”
Val patted the long bone knife on her hip. “Lord Crow is welcome to steal into my bed any night he dares. Once he’s been gelded, keeping those vows will come much easier for him.”
Looks like there's a couple different ways to read this. Jon is joking with her about stealing his wolf so it could all be banter. It could be read as prompted by Tormund's comment about Val not minding Jon "keeping his vows." She does resort to calling him Lord Crow instead of Lord Snow possibly meaning Lord Snow is welcome but Lord Crow is not (this one's my guess.) Not sure if we should make anything out of Tormund's response of telling his son not to try and steal Val. She may also be upset about returning to her cell and angry at Jon about it.
I still read it as good natured.
Val fell in beside him. “So ... I brought you Tormund, as I said I would. What now? Am I to be returned to my old cell?”
“I would choose freedom over comfort every time.”
Then there's this:
Jon is giving Val a protector and she compares it the protection her sister Dalla got while married to Mance.
“Freedom of the castle you shall have, but I regret to say you must remain a captive. I can promise that you will not be troubled by unwanted visitors, however. My own men guard Hardin’s Tower, not the queen’s. And Wun Wun sleeps in the entry hall.”
“A giant as protector? Even Dalla could not boast of that.”
The final exchange is:
“May I laugh when I kneel?”
“You may not. This is no game. A river of blood runs between our peoples, old and deep and red. Stannis Baratheon is one of the few who favors admitting wildlings to the realm. I need his queen’s support for what I’ve done.”
Val’s playful smile died. “You have my word, Lord Snow. I will be a proper wildling princess for your queen.”
Val was being playful but it isn't stated how for back in the dialogue that playfulness goes. She is also back to calling him Lord Snow.
Edited by Ragnorak, 29 July 2012 - 02:23 PM.