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Chapter 14 A Game of Thrones Chapter 16

Chapter 15Edit

Page start(paperback version): p. 139

POV Character: Sansa Stark

SynopsisEdit

One morning, when they are staying overnight at an inn near the Trident, Septa Mordane informs Sansa that they have been invited to ride in the wheelhouse with Queen Cersei and Princess Myrcella. Sansa goes to look for Arya to tell her about the invitation, and finds her on the banks of the river with her direwolf. Arya says that she's not joining them, instead intending to go with Mycah to look for rubies in the river; she doesn't want to go into a windowless wheelhouse.

Sansa remembers how Arya went exploring in The Neck and brought their father flowers, which turned out to be poisonous. She doesn't understand how her sister can prefer running around in dirty clothes with smelly commoners to eating lemon cakes with a queen. Arya says she doesn't even like the queen, and she can't even take Nymeria into the wheelhouse; she insists that she's going riding instead, and Sansa gives up. She also doesn't understand how her sister can be so different, more like Jon Snow than Sansa herself.

When she returns to the camp near the inn, she sees a crowd gathered near the wheelhouse. An honour guard has been sent from King's Landing to accompany them the rest of the way, with two more members of the Kingsguard, and a more disturbing companion. Sansa cannot take her eyes off him, and is startled when Sandor Clegane comes up behind her; she recoils and Lady begins to growl. People begin to comment at the presence of the direwolf, and the two new knights draw their swords.

Cersei sends Joffrey to Sansa's aid, and he persuades the knights to put away their swords, sending Clegane off peremptorily as well. Sansa says it was the other stranger who scared her, and she is introduced to Ilyn Payne, the King's Justice. Ser Barristan Selmy introduces himself to Sansa, but the other knight insists that she guess. She correctly deduces that he is the king's brother, Renly Baratheon. Ilyn Payne comes to stand before her, but does not speak, and Cersei says that his tongue was cut out by Aerys Targaryen.

The Queen says that she must speak with the councillors, and instead of joining Myrcella, Sansa may go off with Joffrey. Sansa is overjoyed at spending the day with her betrothed. Joffrey suggests that they go riding, leaving Lady and the Hound behind them. Sansa is worried about leaving their escort, but Joffrey shows her his sword, Lion's Tooth. They ride along the river, exploring, and have a picnic lunch by the river. They hear an odd sound coming from nearby, and go to investigate.

In a nearby clearing, they find a boy and a girl play-fighting with sticks. The boy is much taller than the girl, and is beating her. When the girl is disarmed, Sansa recognizes her as Arya. Joffrey laughs, and the boy, Mycah, drops his stick as well. Joffrey challenges him to a fight, sword against stick; Mycah doesn't take up the challenge, and Joffrey pricks him with his sword, angry that Mycah was hitting his betrothed's sister. Arya asks Joffrey to leave him alone, and when he doesn't, she attacks him.

She clubs Joffrey on the back of the head, breaking her stick. Mycah runs away, while Joffrey knocks the stick from Arya's hands. Arya throws a rock, hitting Joffrey's horse and driving it away. Joffrey chases Arya with his sword, backing her up against a tree, until suddenly Nymeria appears, biting Joffrey's sword arm and knocking him down. Arya calls her name, and the direwolf lets the prince go. Arya picks up Lion's Tooth and throws it into the Trident. Arya and Nymeria run off. When Sansa goes for help, Joffrey snarls at her to get away from him.

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