Tower of the Hand

Book 2, Chapter 8.
Robb gives Ser Cleos Frey peace terms to take to Cersei. Catelyn decides that Robb must treat with Renly.
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Ser Robin Ryger brings Ser Cleos Frey before Robb, who is attended by Catelyn, Theon, Edmure, the Greatjon, Olyvar, and Grey Wind. He is wearing his new crown, based on the original crown of the King in the North lost to Aegon the Conqueror, a bronze circlet incised with the runes of the First Men and surmounted by nine black spikes in the shape of longswords. Robb orders Ser Cleos to carry a message to Cersei and then return to his captivity. The message is an offer of peace. Lord Rickard leaves the hall in disgust when this is announced. The terms are as follows: Sansa and Arya must be released, after which Robb will release Willem and Tion; Sansa's betrothal to Joffrey is to end; Eddard's bones and those of his household must be returned, as must Ice; Lord Tywin must release his captives from the Green Fork, after which Robb will release his captives save Jaime, who will remain a hostage; and Joffrey must renounce all claim to the north and the riverlands. Maester Vyman has drawn a map denoting the borders of the new kingdom. The agreement is to be secured by ten highborn hostages, two of which Robb will release each year of peace.

Catelyn, Edmure, and Robb confer afterwards. Catelyn is worried about Lord Rickard, and Edmure states that losing him would be disastrous. Catelyn wanted better terms, but had a hard time convincing Robb to make any offer at all; she is desperate to get her girls back. Edmure thinks they should march on Harrenhal, but Robb does not have the strength and his host gets smaller by the day because Edmure gave leave to the river lords to return to their lands. Ser Marq, Lord Karyl, and Lord Jonos have already left, and Lord Jason has stated his intent to do the same. Catelyn continues to badger Robb about the girls, angering him. He asks if she will not go back to the Twins or Winterfell, but she says she must stay while her father lives. Robb is sending Theon to Pyke to treat with Lord Balon Greyjoy, for his longships will be necessary for the continued prosecution of the war.

Catelyn goes to see her father and finds Ser Brynden with him, just returned from a scouting mission. Catelyn tells him that Hoster sleeps most of the time now, gets weaker every day, and rarely makes sense anymore when he speaks. Catelyn is happy, however, that Brynden has made peace with him. Catelyn and Ser Brynden go outside and discuss the comet. The Greatjon thinks the old gods sent it as a message of vengeance, Edmure thinks it is Tully red and heralds victory, and Catelyn fears it is Lannister crimson and spells defeat. Brynden thinks it heralds blood. Brynden reports that the fighting goes badly in the riverlands. Ser Marq and Lord Karyl have won minor victories and Lord Beric continues to raid the Lannister rear. Ser Burton Crakehall claimed to have killed him, but then fell into an ambush orchestrated by Lord Beric and died.1 Elsewhere, the lords of the riverlands are faring less well. Lord Jonos was repulsed from Stone Hedge and wounded; his nephew Hendry was slain. Lord Tytos retook Raventree, but the land around it is a scorched desert. Lyman's men retook the Darry keep, but Gregor descended on them a fortnight later and put the whole garrison to the sword, including Lyman. Gregor, Ser Amory, and Vargo Hoat are pillaging everything, leaving only ruin in their wake. Worse, Ser Stafford and Ser Daven Lannister are gathering another army at Casterly Rock, though this army will consist of sellswords, freeriders, and green boys and will take time to put into the field. Lord Tywin obviously wants Robb to march on Harrenhal, which would be foolish, as it is one of the mightiest castles in Westeros. King Harren the Black built it three hundred years ago, but when Aegon the Conqueror arrived, he merely burned the castle, killing Harren and his family. The castle has been reputed to be cursed ever since, and misfortune seems to haunt its owners. Catelyn decides that they must force Tywin to come out, and the only way to do that is to convince Renly to come north.


Active Characters

  1. Cleos Frey - He has stringy brown hair, a weak chin, and a thin face.
  2. Vargo Hoat - He is from Qohor.


  1. Grey Wind - He has gold eyes.


  1. Harrenhal - Harrenhal was built over forty years by Harren the Black to be the largest and most magnificent castle in all of Westeros, crowned by five huge towers. Harren completed the edifice the day Aegon the Conqueror landed. Aegon turned his dragons on the castle, and the fires killed Harren.


Warning: Footnotes may contain spoilers from later chapters or books.


1.  Prologue 25.  Theon II 49.  Daenerys IV
2.  Arya I 26.  Tyrion VI 50.  Tyrion XI
3.  Sansa I 27.  Arya VI 51.  Theon IV
4.  Tyrion I 28.  Daenerys II 52.  Jon VI
5.  Bran I 29.  Bran IV 53.  Sansa IV
6.  Arya II 30.  Tyrion VII 54.  Jon VII
7.  Jon I 31.  Arya VII 55.  Tyrion XII
8.  Catelyn I 32.  Catelyn III 56.  Catelyn VII
9.  Tyrion II 33.  Sansa III 57.  Theon V
10.  Arya III 34.  Catelyn IV 58.  Sansa V
11.  Davos I 35.  Jon IV 59.  Davos III
12.  Theon I 36.  Bran V 60.  Tyrion XIII
13.  Daenerys I 37.  Tyrion VIII 61.  Sansa VI
14.  Jon II 38.  Theon III 62.  Tyrion XIV
15.  Arya IV 39.  Arya VIII 63.  Sansa VII
16.  Tyrion III 40.  Catelyn V 64.  Daenerys V
17.  Bran II 41.  Daenerys III 65.  Arya X
18.  Tyrion IV 42.  Tyrion IX 66.  Sansa VIII
19.  Sansa II 43.  Davos II 67.  Theon VI
20.  Arya V 44.  Jon V 68.  Tyrion XV
21.  Tyrion V 45.  Tyrion X 69.  Jon VIII
22.  Bran III 46.  Catelyn VI 70.  Bran VII
23.  Catelyn II 47.  Bran VI
24.  Jon III 48.  Arya IX