Hear me Roar.
A Lannister always pays his debts.
They say that Lord Tywin's shit is flecked with gold.
And who are you, the proud lord said,
That I must bow so low?
Only a cat of a different coat,
That's all the truth I know.
In a coat of gold or a coat of red,
A lion still has claws,
And mine are long and sharp, my lord,
As long and sharp as yours.
And so he spoke, and so he spoke,
That lord of Castamere,
But now the rains weep o'er his hall,
With no one there to hear.
Yes now the rains weep o'er his hall,
And not a soul to hear.
— The Rains of Castamere
When you play the game of thrones, you win or you die. There is no middle ground.
[Laughs] Wait until you birth a child, Sansa. A woman’s life is nine parts mess to one part magic, you’ll learn that soon enough... and the parts that look like magic often turn out to be messiest of all.
Robert wanted to be loved. My brother Tyrion has the same disease. Love is poison. A sweet poison, yes, but it will kill you all the same.
Cersei: Do you know why Varys is so dangerous?
Tyrion: Are we playing at riddles now? No.
Cersei: He doesn’t have a cock.
Tyrion: Neither do you.” [And don’t you just hate that, Cersei?]
Cersei: Perhaps I’m dangerous too. You, on the other hand, are as big a fool as every other man. That worm between your legs does half your thinking.
The things I do for love.
Catelyn: Your crimes will have earned you a place of torment in the deepest of the seven hells, if the gods are just.
Jaime: What gods are those, Lady Catelyn? The trees your husband prayed to? How well did they serve him when my sister took his head off? [Chuckles] If there are gods, why is the world so full of pain and injustice?
Catelyn: Because of men like you.
Jaime: There are no men like me. There is only me.
Jaime: I was the youngest man ever to wear the white cloak.
Catelyn: And the youngest to betray all it stood for, Kingslayer.
Chief Armorer: Men shall name you Goldenhand from this day forth, my lord.
Jaime: He was wrong. I shall be the Kingslayer till I die.
This is a time for beasts, for lions and wolves and angry dogs, for ravens and carrion crows.
Jaime: That was Raymun Darry's bedchamber. Where King Robert slept, on our return from Winterfell. Ned Stark's daughter had run off after her wolf savaged Joff, you'll recall. My sister wanted the girl to lose a hand. The old penalty, for striking one of the blood royal. Robert told her she was cruel and mad. They fought for half the night... well, Cersei fought, and Robert drank. Past midnight, the queen summoned me inside. The king was passed out snoring on the Myrish carpet. I asked my sister if she wanted me to carry him to bed. She told me I should carry her to bed, and shrugged out of her robe. I took her on Raymun Darry's bed after stepping over Robert. If His Grace had woken I would have killed him there and then. He would not have been the first king to die upon my sword... but you know that story, don't you? As I was fucking her, Cersei cried, 'I want.' I thought that she meant me, but it was the Stark girl that she wanted, maimed or dead. It was only by chance that Stark's own men found the girl before me. If I had come on her first...
Ilyn Payne: [Opens mouths and hisses and rattles whatever's left of his tongue. Jaime realizes that he is laughing at him.]]
Jaime: You talk too much.
You’ve seen our numbers, Edmure. You’ve seen the ladders, the towers, the trebuchets, the rams. If I speak the command, my coz will bridge your moat and break your gate. Hundreds will die, most of them your own. Your former bannermen will make up the first wave of attackers, so you’ll start your day by killing the fathers and brothers of men who died for you at the Twins. The second wave will be Freys, I have no lack of those. My westermen will follow when your archers are short of arrows and your knights so weary they can hardly lift their blades. When the castle falls, all those inside will be put to the sword. Your herds will be butchered, your godswood will be felled, your keeps and towers will burn. I’ll pull your walls down, and divert the Tumblestone over the ruins. By the time I’m done no man will ever know that a castle once stood here. Your wife may whelp before that. You’ll want your child, I expect. I’ll send him to you when he’s born. With a trebuchet.
Jaime: [fighting Brienne] Not bad at all!
Brienne: For a wench?
Jaime: For a squire, say. A green one. [laughs] Come on, come on, my sweetling, the music's still playing. Might I have this dance, my lady?
[On Loras] He's me. I am speaking to myself, as I was, all cocksure arrogance and empty chivalry. This is what it does to you, to be too good too young.
I think it passing odd that I am loved by one for a kindness I never did, and reviled by so many for my finest act
I learned long ago that it is considered rude to vomit on your brother.
Tyrion: Let me give you some councel, bastard. Never forget what you are, for surely the world will not. Make it your strength. Then it can never be your weakness. Armour yourself in it and it will never be used to hurt you.
Jon: What do you know about being a bastard?
Tyrion: All dwarfs are bastards in their father's eyes.
Jon: You are your mother's true born son of Lannister.
Tyrion: Am I? Do tell my lord father. My mother died birthing me, and he's never been sure.
Jon: I don't even know who my mother was.
Tyrion: Some woman, no doubt. Most of them are. Remember this, boy. All dwarfs may be bastards, yet not all bastards need be dwarfs.
I loved a maid as fair as summer, with sunlight in her hair.
Lord Lefford frowned. “I saw that great hairy one today, the one who insisted that he must have two battle-axes, the heavy black steel ones with twin crescent blades.”
“Shagga likes to kill with either hand,” Tyrion said as a trencher of steaming pork was laid in front of him.
“He still had that wood-axe of his strapped to his back.”
“Shagga is of the opinion that three axes are even better than two.” Tyrion reached a thumb and forefinger into the salt dish, and sprinkled a healthy pinch over his meat.
“Bastard!” someone screamed at Joffrey, “bastard monster.” Other voices flung calls of “Whore” and “Brotherfucker” at the queen, while Tyrion was pelted with shouts of “Freak” and “Halfman.” Mixed in with the abuse, he heard a few cries of “Justice” and “Robb, King Robb, the Young Wolf,” of “Stannis!” and even “Renly!” From both sides of the street, the crowd surged against the spear shafts while the gold cloaks struggled to hold the line. Stones and dung and fouler things whistled overhead. “Feed us!” a woman shrieked. “Bread!” boomed a man behind her. “We want bread, bastard!” In a heartbeat, a thousand voices took up the chant. King Joffrey and King Robb and King Stannis were forgotten, and King Bread ruled alone.
“Bread,” they clamored. “Bread, bread!”
Tyrion: What sort of man do you take me for?
Cersei: A small and twisted one.
Those are brave men. Let’s go kill them.
A dead enemy is a joy forever.
It all goes back and back, to our mothers and fathers and theirs before them. We are puppets dancing on the strings of those who came before us, and one day our own children will take up our strings and dance on in our steads.
For hands of gold are always cold, but a woman’s hands are warm.
"Sansa, is aught wrong?"
- Possibly the stupidest question in the history of Westeros, as Tyrion realized a nano-second after it passed his lips.
[Hysterical Laughter] Jaime, I am so sorry, but... gods be good, look at the two of us. Handless and Noseless, the Lannister boys.
That might have hurt me once, when I still felt pain.
They say I'm half a man. What does that make the lot of you?
At least he did not dream. He had dreamed enough for one small life. And of such follies: love, justice, friendship, glory. As well dream of being tall.
“Wherever whores go,” he heard Lord Tywin say once more, and once more the bowstring thrummed.
"The last word Nurse ever said was, 'No.' The last words he heard were, 'A Lannister always pays his debts.'"
Septa Lemore: You have a gift for making men smile, you should thank the Father Above. He gives gifts to all his children.
Tyrion: He does. [And when I die, please let them bury with me a crossbow, so I can thank the Father Above for his gifts the same way I thanked the father below.]
Galyeon of Cuy: (singing) The dark lord assembled his legions, they gathered around him like crows. And thirsty for blood they boarded their ships...
Tyrion: ...and cut off poor Tyrion's nose
Lord Tywin Lannister
[To Tyrion] You ask that? You, who killed your mother to come into the world? You are an ill-made, devious, disobedient, spiteful little creature full of envy, lust, and low cunning. Men’s laws give you the right to bear my name and display my colors, since I cannot prove that you are not mine. To teach me humility, the gods have condemned me to watch you waddle about wearing that proud lion that was my father’s sigil and his father’s before him. But neither gods nor men shall ever compel me to let you turn Casterly Rock into your whorehouse.
When your enemies defy you, you must serve them steel and fire. When they go to their knees, however, you must help them back to their feet. Elsewise no man will ever bend the knee to you. And any man who must say ‘I am the king’ is no true king at all.
You have a certain cunning, Tyrion, but the plain truth is you talk too much. That loose tongue of yours will be your undoing.
Kevan: Tywin seems a hard man to you, I know, but he is no harder than he’s had to be. Our own father was gentle and amiable, but so weak his bannermen mocked him in their cups. Some saw fit to defy him openly. Other lords borrowed our gold and never troubled to repay it. At court they japed of toothless lions. Even his mistress stole from him. A woman scarcely one step above a whore, and she helped herself to my mother’s jewels! It fell to Tywin to restore House Lannister to its proper place just as it fell to him to rule this realm, when he was no more than twenty. He bore that heavy burden for twenty years, and all it earned him was a mad king’s envy. Instead of the honor he deserved, he was made to suffer slights beyond count, yet he gave the Seven Kingdoms peace, plenty, and justice. He is a just man. You would be wise to trust him.
Pycell: Ser Jaime, I have seen terrible things in my time, Wars, battles, murders most foul... I was a boy in Oldtown when the grey plague took half the city and three-quarters of the Citadel. Lord Hightower burned every ship in port, closed the gates, and commanded his guards to slay all those who tried to flee, be they men, women, or babes in arms. They killed him when the plague had run its course. On the very day he reopened the port, they dragged him from his horse and slit his throat, and his young son’s as well. To this day the ignorant in Oldtown will spit at the sound of his name, but Quenton Hightower did what was needed. Your father was that sort of man as well. A man who did what was needed.
[Final Words] Wherever whores go.
Winter is coming.
The lone wolf dies, but the pack survives.
The blood of the First Men still flows in the veins of the Starks, and we hold to the belief that the man who passes the sentence should swing the sword. If you would take a man’s life, you owe it to him to look into his eyes and hear his final words. And if you cannot bear to do that, then perhaps the man does not deserve to die.
The Priest in Black and White: Men may whisper of the Faceless Men of Braavos, but we are older than the Secret City. Before the Titan rose, before the Unmasking of Uthero, before the Founding, we were. We have flowered in Braavos amongst these northern fogs, but we first took root in Valyria, amongst the wretched slaves who toiled in the deep mines beneath the Fourteen Flames that lit the Freehold’s nights of old. Most mines are dank and chilly places, cut from cold dead stone, but the Fourteen Flames were living mountains with veins of molten rock and hearts of fire. So the mines of old Valyria were always hot, and they grew hotter as the shafts were driven deeper, ever deeper. The slaves toiled in an oven. The rocks around them were too hot to touch. The air stank of brimstone and would sear their lungs as they breathed it. The soles of their feet would burn and blister, even through the thickest sandals. Sometimes, when they broke through a wall in search of gold, they would find steam instead, or boiling water, or molten rock. Certain shafts were cut so low that the slaves could not stand upright, but had to crawl or bend. And there were wyrms in that red darkness too.
The Priest: Firewyrms. Some say they are akin to dragons, for wyrms breathe fire too. Instead of soaring through the sky, they bore through stone and soil. If the old tales can be believed, there were wyrms amongst the Fourteen Flames even before the dragons came. The young ones are no larger than that skinny arm of yours, but they can grow to monstrous size and have no love for men.
Arya: Did they kill the slaves?
The Priest: Burnt and blackened corpses were oft found in shafts where the rocks were cracked or full of holes. Yet still the mines drove deeper. Slaves perished by the score, but their masters did not care. Red gold and yellow gold and silver were reckoned to be more precious than the lives of slaves, for slaves were cheap in the old Freehold. During war, the Valyrians took them by the thousands. In times of peace they bred them, though only the worst were sent down to die in the red darkness.
Arya: Didn't the slaves rise up and fight?
The Priest: Some did. Revolts were common in the mines, but few accomplished much. The dragonlords of the old Freehold were strong in sorcery, and lesser men defied them at their peril. The first Faceless Man was one who did.
Arya: Who was he?
The Priest: No one. Some say he was a slave himself. Others insist he was a freeholder's son, born of noble stock. Some will even tell you he was an overseer who took pity on his charges. The truth is, no one knows. Whoever he was, he moved amongst the slaves and would hear them at their prayers. Men of a hundred different nations labored in the mines, and each prayed to his own god in his own tongue, yet all were praying for the same thing. It was release they asked for, an end to pain. A small thing, and simple. Yet their gods made no answer, and their suffering went on. Are their gods all deaf? he wondered... until a realization came upon him, one night in the red darkness. All gods have their instruments, men and women who serve them and help to work their will on earth. The slaves were not crying out to a hundred different gods, as it seemed, but to one god with a hundred different faces... and he was that god's instrument. That very night he chose the most wretched of the slaves, the one who had prayed most earnestly for release, and freed him from his bondage. The first gift had been given.
The Priest in Black and White: The Nine Free Cities are the daughters of Valyria that was, but Braavos is the bastard child who ran away from home. We are a mongrel folk, the sons of slaves and whores and thieves. Our forebears came from half a hundred lands to this place of refuge, to escape the dragonlords who had enslaved them. Half a hundred gods came with them, but there is one god all of them shared in common.
Arya: Him of Many Faces.
The Priest: And many names. In Qohor he is the Black Goat, in Yi Ti the Lion of Night, in Westeros the Stranger. All men must bow to him in the end, no matter if they worship the Seven or the Lord of Light, the Moon Mother or the Drowned God or the Great Shepherd. All mankind belongs to him... else somewhere in the world would be a folk who lived forever. Do you know of any folk who live forever?
Arya: No. All men must die.
It was the easiest thing in the world for Arya to step up behind him and stab him. “Is there gold hidden in the village?” she shouted as she drove the blade up through his back. “Is there silver? Gems?” She stabbed twice more. “Is there food? Where is Lord Beric?” She was on top of him by then, still stabbing. “Where did he go? How many men were with him? How many knights? How many bowmen? How many, how many, how many, how many, how many, how many? is there gold in the village?"
Gods? There are no 'gods', young bravo. There is only one God, and his name is Death - Him of Many Faces. And there is only one prayer that one says to him - 'Not Today'.
The First Sword of Braavos does not run!
In Pentos we have a prince, my friend. He presides at ball and feast and rides about the city in a palanquin of ivory and gold. Three heralds go before him with the golden scales of trade, the iron sword of war, and the silver scourge of justice. On the first day of each new year he must deflower the maid of the fields and the maid of the seas. Yet should a crop fail or a war be lost, we cut his throat to appease the gods and choose a new prince from amongst the forty families.
Daenerys was half a child when she came to me, yet fairer even than my second wife, so lovely I was tempted to claim her for myself. Such a fearful, furtive thing, however, I knew I should get no joy from coupling with her. Instead I summoned a bed-warmer and fucked her vigorously until the madness passed. If truth be told, I did not think Daenerys would survive for long amongst the horselords.
You Westerosi are all the same. You sew some beast upon a scrap of silk, and suddenly you are all lions or dragons or eagles. I can take you to a real lion, my little friend. The prince keeps a pride in his menagerie. Would you like to share a cage with them?
My Queen, all you say is true. But Rhaegar lost on the Trident. He lost the battle, he lost the war, he lost the kingdom, and he lost his life. His blood swirled downriver with the rubies from his breastplate, and the Usurper rode over his corpse to steal the Iron Throne. Rhaegar fought valiantly, Rhaegar fought nobly, Rhaegar fought honorably. And Rhaegar died.
The common people pray for rain, healthy children, and a summer that never ends. It is no matter to them if the high lords play their game of thrones, so long as they are left in peace. They never are.
Kings have no friends, only subjects and enemies.
Robert could piss in a cup and men would call it wine, but I offer them pure cold water and they squint in suspicion and mutter to each other about how queer it tastes.
The seven have never brought me so much as a sparrow. It is time I tried a new hawk, Davos. A red hawk.
“I am not without mercy,” thundered he who was notoriously without mercy.
It is law. Law, Davos. Not cruelty.
Catelyn: This one will never bend. Break, perhaps, but not bend.
Thorne: Who better to command the black, than he who commanded the gold?
Stannis: Anyone, I should think, even the cook.
Renly: "Born amidst salt and smoke. Is he a ham?"
Stannis: The Iron Throne is mine by rights. All those who deny that are my foes.
Renly: The whole of the realm denies it, brother, Old men deny it with their death rattle, and unborn children deny it in their mothers’ wombs. They deny it in Dorne and they deny it on the Wall. No one wants you for their king. Sorry.
Stannis: I defeated your uncle Victarion and his Iron Fleet off Fair Isle, the first time your father crowned himself. I held Storm's End against the power of the Reach for a year, and took Dragonstone from the Targaryens. I smashed Mance Rayder at the Wall, though he had twenty times my numbers. Tell me, turncloak, what battles has the Bastard of Bolton ever won that I should fear him?
The Red Woman
The night is dark, and full of terrors.
[To the Onion Knight] If half of an onion is black with rot, it is a rotten onion. A man is good, or he is evil.
There are no shadows in the dark. Shadows are the servants of light, the children of fire. The brightest flame casts the darkest shadows.
Melisandre: I am like this torch, Ser Davos. We are both instruments of R’hllor. We were made for a single purpose - to keep the darkness at bay. Do you believe that?
The truth is all around you, plain to behold. The night is dark and full of terrors, the day bright and beautiful and full of hope. One is black, the other white. There is ice and there is fire. Hate and love. Bitter and sweet. Male and female. Pain and pleasure. Winter and summer. Evil and good. Death and life. Everywhere, opposites. Everywhere, the war.
There are two, Onion Knight. Not seven, not one, not a hundred or a thousand. Two! Do you think I crossed half the world to put yet another vain king on yet another empty throne? The war has been waged since time began, and before it is done, all men must choose where they will stand. On one side is R’hllor, the Lord of Light, the Heart of Fire, the God of Flame and Shadow. Against him stands the Great Other whose name may not be spoken, the Lord of Darkness, the Soul of Ice, the God of Night and Terror. Ours is not a choice between Baratheon and Lannister, between Greyjoy and Stark. It is death we choose, or life. Darkness, or light.
So tell me, Ser Davos Seaworth, and tell me truly - does your heart burn with the shining light of R’hllor? Or is it black and cold and full of worms?
Bugger that. Bugger him. Bugger you.
[To Sansa] What do you think a knight is for, girl? You think it’s all taking favors from ladies and looking fine in gold plate? Knights are for killing.
There are no true knights, no more than there are gods. If you can’t protect yourself, die and get out of the way of those who can. Sharp steel and strong arms rule this world, don’t ever believe any different.
A knight's a sword with a horse. The rest, the vows and the sacred oils and the lady's favors, they're silk ribbons tied round the sword. Maybe the sword's prettier with the ribbons hanging off it, but it will kill you just as dead. Well, bugger your ribbons, and shove your swords up your arses. I'm the same as you. The only difference is, I don't lie about what I am. So kill me, but don't call me a murderer while you stand there telling each other that your shit don't stink. You hear me?!
Bricks and blood built Astapor, and bricks and blood her people.
Every time a Targaryen is born, it is said, the Gods flip a coin to determine his nature, on one face, greatness, the other, madness. The entire world holds its breath to see how it lands.
There is a wall at the end of the world, vast, cold and bleak. The laws of man end at the wall, they say.
Ooooooh, I am the last of the giants, my people are gone from the earth.
The last of the great mountain giants, who ruled all the world at my birth,
Oh, the smallfolk have stolen my forests, they’ve stolen my rivers and hills.
And they’ve built a great wall through my valleys, and fished all the fish from my rills,
In stone halls they burn their great fires, in stone halls they forge their sharp spears.
Whilst I walk alone in the mountains, with no true companion but tears.
They hunt me with dogs in the daylight, they hunt me with torches by night.
For these men who are small can never stand tall, whilst giants still walk in the light.
Oooooooh, I am the LAST of the giants, so learn well the words of my song.
For when I am gone the singing will fade, and the silence shall last long and long.
You know nothing, Jon Snow.
The gods made the earth for all men t’ share. Only when the kings come with their crowns and steel swords, they claimed it was all theirs. My trees, they said, you can’t eat them apples. My stream, you can’t fish here. My wood, you’re not t’hunt. My earth, my water, my castle, my daughter, keep your hands away or I’ll chop ‘em off, but maybe if you kneel t’ me I’ll let you have a sniff. You call us thieves, but at least a thief has t’ be brave and clever and quick. A kneeler only has t’ kneel.
It was four hundred years ago or more, when the Dothraki first rode out of the east, sacking and burning every town and city in their path. The khal who led them was named Temmo. His khalasar was not so big as Drogo's, but it was big enough. Fifty thousand, at the least. Half of them braided warriors with bells ringing in their hair.
The Qohorik knew he was coming. They strengthened their walls, doubled the size of their own guard, and hired two free companies besides, the Bright Banners and the Second Sons. And almost as an afterthought, they sent a man to Astapor to buy three thousand Unsullied. It was a long march back to Qohor, however, and as they approached they saw the smoke and dust and heard the distant din of battle.
By the time the Unsullied reached the city the sun had set. Crows and wolves were feasting beneath the walls on what remained of the Qohorik heavy horse. The Bright Banners and Second Sons had fled, as sellswords are wont to do in the face of hopeless odds. With dark falling, the Dothraki had retired to their own camps to drink and dance and feast, but none doubted that they would return on the morrow to smash the city gates, storm the walls, and rape, loot, and slave as they pleased.
But when dawn broke and Temmo and his bloodriders led their khalasar out of camp, they found three thousand Unsullied drawn up before the gates with the Black Goat standard flying over their heads. So small a force could easily have been flanked, but you know Dothraki. These were men on foot, and men on foot are fit only to be ridden down.
The Dothraki charged. The Unsullied locked their shields, lowered their spears, and stood firm. Against twenty thousand screamers with bells in their hair, they stood firm.
Eighteen times the Dothraki charged, and broke themselves on those shields and spears like waves on a rocky shore. Thrice Temmo sent his archers wheeling past and arrows fell like rain upon the Three Thousand, but the Unsullied merely lifted their shields above their heads until the squall had passed. In the end only six hundred of them remained . . . but more than twelve thousand Dothraki lay dead upon that field, including Khal Temmo, his bloodriders, his kos, and all his sons. On the morning of the fourth day, the new khal led the survivors past the city gates in a stately procession. One by one, each man cut off his braid and threw it down before the feet of the Three Thousand.
— Jorah Mormont
Kraznys mo Nakloz: The Unsullied have something better than strength, tell her. They have discipline. We fight in the fashion of the Old Empire, yes. They are the lockstep legions of Old Ghis come again, absolutely obedient, absolutely loyal, and utterly without fear.
Kraznys mo Nakloz: In Yunkai and Meereen, eunuchs are often made by removing a boy’s testicles, but leaving the penis. Such a creature is infertile, yet often still capable of erection. Only trouble can come of this. We remove the penis as well, leaving nothing. The Unsullied are the purest creatures on the earth.
Kraznys mo Nakloz: To win his spiked cap, an Unsullied must go to the slave marts with a silver mark, find some wailing newborn, and kill it before its mother’s eyes. In this way, we make certain that there is no weakness left in them.
Daenyrs: You take a babe from its mother’s arms, kill it as she watches, and pay for her pain with a silver coin?
Kraznys mo Nakloz: Tell the whore of Westeros that the mark is for the child’s owner, not the mother. The Unsullied are not permitted to steal. Tell her that few ever fail that test. The dogs are harder for them, it must be said. We give each boy a puppy on the day that he is cut. At the end of the first year, he is required to strangle it. Any who cannot are killed, and fed to the surviving dogs. It makes for a good strong lesson, we find.
Blood and Fire.
Eight thousand Unsullied they would offer me. Eight thousand brick men. Eight thousand dead babes. Eight thousand strangled dogs.
Mirri Maz Duur: When the sun rises in the west and sets in the east. When the seas go dry and mountains blow in the wind like leaves. When your womb quickens again, and you bear a living child. Then he will return, and not before.
If I look back, I am lost.
Dragons die, but so do dragon slayers.
Daenerys: You are in difficulty.
Kraznys mo Nakloz: He will not come.
Daenerys: There is a reason. A dragon is no slave. *CRACK*
Once, at the Citadel, I came into an empty room and saw an empty chair. Yet I knew a woman had been there, only a moment before. The cushion was dented where she’d sat, the cloth was still warm, and her scent lingered in the air. If we leave our smells behind us when we leave a room, surely something of our souls must remain when we leave this life?
The archmaesters are all craven at heart. The grey sheep, Marwyn calls them. I was as skilled a healer as Ebrose, but aspired to surpass him. For hundreds of years the men of the Citadel have opened the bodies of the dead, to study the nature of life. I wished to understand the nature of death, so I opened the bodies of the living. For that crime the grey sheep shamed me and forced me into exile... but I understand the nature of life and death better than any man in Oldtown.
[To Ned Stark] Not trusting me was the wisest decision you have ever made.
Whose peace do the Goldcloaks enforce when the Hand proclaims one king and the Queen other? [Laughs] The man who pays them.
Always keep your foes confused. If they are never certain who you are or what you want, they cannot know what you are like to do next. Sometimes the best way to baffle them is to make moves that have no purpose, or even seem to work against you.
Men of honor will do things for their children that they would never consider doing for themselves.
Lyn Corbay: All this talk makes me ill. Littlefinger will talk you all out of your smallclothes if you listen long enough.
What is dead may never die, but rises again, harder and stronger!
Glory to the Lord, our God, he who drowned for us!
Even a priest may doubt. Even a prophet may know terror. Aeron Damphair reached within himself for his god and discovered only silence.
No godless man may sit the Seastone Chair!
You shall not pass.
Serve. Obey. Protect. Simple vows for simple men.
Arianne: [Crying] How could he know? I was so careful. How could he know?
Areo Hotah: Someone told. [Shrugs] Someone always tells.
Euron Crow's Eye
Rodrik: Balon was mad, Aeron madder and Euron maddest of them all.
Euron: I am the storm, my lord. The first storm, and the last. I have taken the Silence on longer voyages than this, and ones far more hazardous. Have you forgotten? I have sailed the Smoking Sea and seen Valyria.
Rodrik: Have you?
Godless? Why, Aeron, I am the godliest man ever to raise sail! You serve one god, Damphair, but I have served ten thousand. From Ib to Asshai, when men see my sails, they pray.
When I was a boy, I dreamt that I could fly, When I woke, I couldn’t... or so the maester said. But what if he lied?
Shade-of-the-evening, the wine of the warlocks. I came upon a cask of it when I captured a certain galleas out of Qarth, along with some cloves and nutmeg, forty bolts of green silk, and four warlocks who told a curious tale. One presumed to threaten me, so I killed him and fed him to the other three. They refused to eat of their friend’s flesh at first, but when they grew hungry enough they had a change of heart. Men are meat.
Dolorous Edd Tollett
The dead are likely dull fellows, full of tedious complaints - 'the ground's too cold, my gravestone should be larger, why does HE get more worms than I do...'
Once they figure a way to work a dead horse, we'll be next. Likely I'll be the first too. 'Edd,' they'll say, 'dying's no excuse for laying down no more, so get on up and take this spear, you've got first watch tonight.' Well, I shouldn't be so gloomy. Might be I'll die before they work it out.
Cotter Pyke: We will defend the wall to the last man!
Edd: [resigned] Probably me.
Pyp: [about the contest to see which of the straw soldiers could collect more wildling arrows] You were leading most of the way, but Watt of Long Lake got three in the last day and passed you.
Edd: I never win anything. The gods always smiled on Watt, though. When the wildlings knocked him off the Bridge of Skulls, somehow he landed in a nice deep pool of water. How lucky was that, missing all those rocks?
Grenn: Was it a long fall? Did landing in the pool of water save his life?
Edd: No. He was dead already, from that axe in his head. Still, it was pretty lucky, missing the rocks.
Jon: [in a house with a packed dirt floor and no furnishings] What a dismal place to live.
Edd: I was born in a house much like this. Those were my enchanted years. Later I fell on hard times.
Against a backdrop of incest and fratricide, alchemy and murder, victory may go to the men and women possessed of the coldest steel... and the coldest hearts.
— Blurb for A Clash of Kings
Ned: “I looked for you on the Trident,”
Ser Gerold: “We were not there,”
Ser Oswell: “Woe to the Usurper if we had been,”
Ned: “When King's Landing fell, Ser Jaime slew your king with a golden sword, and I wondered where you were.”
Ser Gerold: “Far away, or Aerys would yet sit the Iron Throne, and our false brother would burn in seven hells.”
Ned: “I came down on Storm's End to lift the siege and the Lords Tyrell and Redwyne dipped their banners, and all their knights bent the knee to pledge us fealty. I was certain you would be among them.”
Ser Arthur Dayne: “Our knees do not bend easily,”
Ned: “Ser Willem Darry is fled to Dragonstone, with your queen and Prince Viserys. I thought you might have sailed with him.”
Ser Oswell: Ser Willem is a good man and true,”
Ser Gerold: “But not of the Kingsguard, the Kingsguard does not flee.”
Ser Arthur: “Then or now,”
Ser Gerold: “We swore a vow,”
Ser Arthur: “And now it begins,”
Ned: “No. Now it ends.”
There are many sorts of outlaws, just as there are many sorts of birds. A sandpiper and a sea eagle both have wings, but they are not the same. The singers love to sing of good men forced to go outside the law to fight some wicked lord, but most outlaws are more like this ravening Hound than they are the lightning lord. They are evil men, driven by greed, soured by malice, despising the gods and caring only for themselves. Broken men are more deserving of our pity, though they may be just as dangerous. Almost all are common-born, simple folk who had never been more than a mile from the house where they were born until the day some lord came round to take them off to war. Poorly shod and poorly clad, they march away beneath his banners, ofttimes with no better arms than a sickle or a sharpened hoe, or a maul they made themselves by lashing a stone to a stick with strips of hide. Brothers march with brothers, sons with fathers, friends with friends. They’ve heard the songs and stories, so they go off with eager hearts, dreaming of the wonders they will see, of the wealth and glory they will win. War seems a fine adventure, the greatest most of them will ever know.
Then they get a taste of battle.
For some, that one taste is enough to break them. Others go on for years, until they lose count of all the battles they have fought in, but even a man who has survived a hundred fights can break in his hundred-and-first. Brothers watch their brothers die, fathers lose their sons, friends see their friends trying to hold their entrails in after they’ve been gutted by an axe. They see the lord who led them there cut down, and some other lord shouts that they are his now. They take a wound, and when that’s still half-healed they take another. There is never enough to eat, their shoes fall to pieces from the marching, their clothes are torn and rotting, and half of them are shitting in their breeches from drinking bad water.
If they want new boots or a warmer cloak or maybe a rusted iron halfhelm, they need to take them from a corpse, and before long they are stealing from the living too, from the smallfolk whose lands they’re fighting in, men very like the men they used to be. They slaughter their sheep and steal their chickens, and from there it’s just a short step to carrying off their daughters too. And one day they look around and realize all their friends and kin are gone, that they are fighting beside strangers beneath a banner that they hardly recognize. They don’t know where they are or how to get back home and the lord they’re fighting for does not know their names, yet here he comes, shouting for them to form up, to make a line with their spears and scythes and sharpened hoes, to stand their ground. And the knights come down on them, faceless men clad all in steel, and the iron thunder of their charge seems to fill the world...
And the man breaks.
He turns and runs, or crawls off afterward over the corpses of the slain, or steals away in the black of night, and he finds someplace to hide. All thought of home is gone by then, and kings and lords and gods mean less to him than a haunch of spoiled meat that will let him live another day, or a skin of bad wine that might drown his fear for a few hours. The broken man lives from day to day, from meal to meal, more beast than man. Lady Brienne is not wrong. In times like these, the traveler must beware of broken men, and fear them... but he should pity them as well.
— Septon Meribald
"There is much I do not understand, I have never pretended elsewise. I know the seas and rivers, the shapes of the coast, where the rocks and shoals lie. I know hidden coves where a boat can land unseen and I know a king protects his people or he is no king at all."
— Ser Davos Seaworth
"Oberyn wanted vengeance for Elia. Now the three of you want vengeance for him. I have four daughters, I remind you. Your sisters. My Elia is fourteen, almost a woman. Obella is twelve, on the brink of maidenhood. They worship you, as Dorea and Loreza worship them. If you should die, must El and Obella seek vengeance for you, then Dorea and Loree for them? Is that how it goes, round and round forever? I ask again, where does it end? I saw your father die. Here is his killer. Can I take a skull to bed with me, to give me comfort in the night? Will it make me laugh, write me songs, care for me when I am old and sick?"
— Ellaria Sand
Ser Loras Tyrell [discussing love]: Once the sun has set, no candle can replace it.
- Promise me, Ned.—Lyanna Stark