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Saturday, 25 July 2015

The War of the Five Kings (Part 2)

"Power resides where men believe it resides. It's a trick, a shadow on the wall and a very small man can cast a very large shadow"
- George R.R Martin, A Game of Thrones

When Catelyn arrested Tyrion Lannister, Tywin Lannister (Tyrion's father) was not pleased at the prospect of having the Lannister named slighted. As a result he gathers 2 armies at his stronghold of Casterly Rock incase of invasion from Catelyn's homeland, the Riverlands. One army is to be manned by Tywin himself and the other by his son Jaime. Tywin precedes to make matters worse by sending out his bannerman Ser Gregor Clegane (The Mountain that Rides), the Hounds brother, to raid the Riverlands. He didn't really care about Tyrion and his safety, but god forbid the Lannisters be made to look bad by someone.

Tywin's raids in the Riverlands are preventing the lords and bannermen from gathering at the muster in Riverrun. Tywin's aim is that the raids will force Eddard Stark into the Riverlands where he can be captured by Tywin's men. However his own son Jaime ruins these plans when he ambushes Eddard in the streets of Kings Landing and Eddard suffers a leg injury. Eddard then sends Beric Dondarrion to stop The Mountain and his raids.

The Mountain that Rides, Ser Gregor Clegane
When Catelyn's father finds out what Lord Tywin is doing he demands to know what Tywin's reasoning is. He doesn't receive a reply and so he calls his banners to Riverrun. However with The Mountain causing havoc in the Riverlands, Edmure can only manage to muster about 4000 men together to help defend the main pass between the Riverlands and the Westerlands, The Golden Tooth. 

During all this havoc Robert Baratheon kicks the bucket and as discussed in Part 1, he leaves Eddard in charge until Joffrey becomes of age. Eddard secretly changes Roberts will to read rightful heir. His intent here is to offer the throne to the rightful heir Stannis Baratheon. However everything goes belly up when Eddard tries to take Joffrey into custody for being a false claimant. Petyr Baelish betrays him and Eddard is arrested, and the only person in Kings Landing who offered to help him, Renly, has fled the city to gather his own army.

When Robb Stark finds out about his fathers arrest he calls the Starks banners and marches south with a host of 12,000 men hoping to gather more as he marches south. As Robb marches south Tywin launches his invasions on the Riverlands. The battles in the Riverlands ensue.
The first of these battles takes place near the Golden Tooth. Jaime descends on the Riverlands with 15,000 men. His goal is to capture Riverrun. Jaime easily breaks the men guarding the border near the Golden Tooth.
A map of The Riverlands and the some of the area's mentioned in this post
The next battle is the battle at the Mummer's Ford. While Lord Beric Dondarrion and his men are crossing the Mummer's Ford they are ambushed by Clegane and Lord Tywin. Dondarrion's force are nearly wiped. Most of the Stark guardsmen sent along by Eddard, and Dondarrion himself are killed. In his victory Lord Tywin closes off the goldroad and continues his march to the Riverlands. Thoros of Myr gathers the remaining survivors and while performing the last rites for Dondarrion he unintentionally resurrects him from the dead. They continue to lead the remaining men against the Lannisters targeting Lord Tywin's supply lines. When Dondarrion and his men hear that Joffrey has declared them outlaws they form the brotherhood without banners.
After his victory at the Golden Tooth, Jaime marches to the walls of Riverrun to meet the banners that have gathered there. However the Riverlands men are no match for the Lannister host and Ser Edmure Tully and many others are taken captive. Some of the survivors manage to make their way back within Riverrun which forces Jaime and his men to lay siege to the castle.
After defeating Dondarrion and his men Tywin conquers other major strongholds in the Riverlands. Harrenhal is surrendered to him due to lack of defenders. 
Anything that could go wrong for the Tully's has, their castle is besieged and it's heir Edmure Tully has been captured. Their only hope now is with Robb Stark and his men who are stuck between a rock and a hard place between the Green Fork and Lord Tywin's host in Harrenhal.
(I know there are differences between this account of events and that of the T.v show but I know the books better and have tried to keep it as general as possible so as not to confuse those who don't read the books!)