Joffrey, Sansa, and an array of goons stroll through King's Landing. Here's Joffrey's idea of small talk: "As soon as you've had your blood, I'll put a son in you." Aside from what that tells you about our budding young sociopath, it's worth noting that Sansa is still quite young. So I guess she should be cut a little slack. A little. Joffrey leads Sansa onto a high bridge to show off his new addition to the Red Keep: heads on pikes! Specifically, Eddard Stark's head on a pike. Sansa cannot maintain her feigned indifference and cries out that he promised he'd be merciful to Ned. Joffrey's idea of mercy is "a quick execution" as opposed to boiling oil or whatever other torture implements they had lying around. That throne looks like it could probably be used for something nasty. Sansa hasn't looked at her father's head, but Joffrey orders her to. So she stares blankly at it for a bit before asking how long she has to do it. The answer is, "As long as it pleases me," which is a little vague. I think she's implicitly accepting that he's up to how long she has to watch.
He changes the subject to the head of Septa Mordane. So she did, in fact, die. Good to know! Sansa still won't react, so Joffrey ups the ante and says that he'll bring her Robb's head. She looks him in the eye and answers, "Or maybe he'll give me yours." Joffrey is instantly furious at being defied, so I don't know what he was hoping for. He tells her that his mother has told him that a king should never hit his lady, which is an understandable position for Cersei to hold, when you think about it. Because of that time that Robert hit her. That is the incident to which I refer. Anyway, because Joffrey is a nasty piece of work, he has one of his goons smack Sansa across the face. It draws blood. She looks down at the long drop off the bridge and then walks toward Joffrey with that evil look that Stanley Kubrick was so fond of. But before she can reach him and push him off the bridge to a richly deserved death by plummeting, the Hound stops her under the guise of giving her a hanky to wipe the blood off her face. Joffrey leaves and the Hound recommends that Sansa do what Joffrey wants. He also thinks she should keep the hanky, because she's going to be getting smacked in the face by an endless succession of goons from now on. Sansa looks at Ned's head again.
Robb is having a war council. Things are moving pretty quickly and they have to decide what their actual goal is. Because he's Ned Stark's boy, he doesn't want to go against what he considers the correct line of succession, which means he technically considers Joffrey to be the legitimate ruler. So he can't, in good conscience, ally himself with Renly Baratheon, who's behind Stannis in the line of succession. And even Stannis isn't legitimate enough for him, because he doesn't know about the Lannister Twincest. His advisors don't disagree, exactly, but it's obvious that swearing allegiance to Joffrey isn't an option either. The Greatjon stands and announces that the Baratheons as a family are nothing to him. They're southern and their gods are wrong. And anyway, it was the dragons that his family bowed to. He waves an arm toward Robb: "There sits the only king I mean to bow my knee to. The King in the North!" Robb stands. Someone announces, "I'll have peace on those terms. They can keep their red castle. And their iron chair." Theon also vows to follow Robb. "The King in the North" is the chant. So now Robb's a king, too? I guess they're splitting off from the rest of the kingdoms, although they still have that sidequest of Killing 'Em All. Oh! I just realized that parallels the Mad King's last words of "Burn them all." I guess you can do something with that. Although this show has so many interconnected things that it's probably foolish to call something out as a specific piece of foreshadowing.
Catelyn bullies her way past some guards so she can talk to Jaime Lannister. They've got a pretty nice prison set up here. Considering everyone else is working in tents, I'm surprised they bothered to put up actual bars for the cells. Jaime isn't inside anything, though. He's just tied to a tree or something. He tells Catelyn she looks lovely and asks if she's lonely, adding, "I'm not at my best, but I think I can be of service." She cracks him across the face with a rock. He doesn't look too good at this point, but manages to claim that he likes a violent woman. Catelyn threatens to cut off his head and send it to his sister. He says he doesn't fear death, and he actually sounds pretty sincere. As sincere as he ever sounds, anyway. He takes a shot at needling Catelyn, asking where her husband's gods were when his head was being cut off. Suddenly he wants to know, if the gods are so powerful, why is there injustice in the world? Catelyn says it's because of men like Jaime. His answer is awesome: "There are no men like me. Only me." That nearly justifies the dopey "Why is there evil?" question. Anyway, about Bran. Jaime is willing to admit that he pushed him out the window, but the only reason he's willing to give is that he hoped the fall would kill him. When Catelyn pushes him on that, he tells her to get some sleep, because it's going to be a long war. She drops the rock and turns to leave. And then she actually leaves! Sorry, I'm just used to shows where people are always stopped just before they get out of the room. That happened two or three times per scene on The Cape. But on this show, even a snarky jerk like Jaime is happy to let someone leave when the discussion's over.
And now, Cersei and a naked Lancel Lannister. Lancel? I guess when Jaime's not around, she just goes with what's available. I guess sex with your cousin is less wrong than sex with your twin, but I still can't say I approve. For one thing, he's clearly a dope. He wants to talk about how exciting the war is, but she tells him to shut his pretty mouth and get back into bed. I guess it's good that she's keeping herself occupied.
The Lannisters are also having a war council. It seems like these people have three councils for every actual battle. Tywin is unhappy about Jaime having been taken, which seems pretty reasonable. Tyrion is unable to resist snarking about how Robb is apparently less green than they'd hoped. One of Tywin's advisors thinks they should consider suing for peace with Robb so they can concentrate on whatever it is that Renly and Stannis are doing. Tyrion smashes his cup on the floor so he can make an analogy about how their chance for peace is as broken as that cup. Because Joffrey chopped off Ned Stark's head, so Robb is unlikely to be in a peaceful mood. And besides that, Robb is currently winning.
The advisors start suggesting all sorts of things, like ransoming Jaime or attacking or retreating. Tywin tells everybody to get out, although he makes Tyrion stay. This is another spot where things didn't happen in Standard Television Show Manner. In a regular show, Tywin would just announce, "Leave us!" and everyone would magically know exactly which set of people was supposed to stay behind. In this show, Tyrion started to leave with everyone else. Although when Tywin said, "Not you," I'm not sure how Tyrion knew that meant him. Anyway! Tywin pours Tyrion wine, which makes him suspicious. He tells him he was right about Eddard Stark, who would be much more useful to them alive. With a living Ned Stark, they could trade him to Robb to stall while they dealt with Renly and Stannis. Tywin tells Tyrion, "I always thought you were a stunted fool. Perhaps I was wrong." Tyrion instantly answers, "Half wrong." They both know they're surrounded and can't stay there. So here's the plan: the Mountain is going to set the Riverlands on fire, and everyone else will regroup somewhere. Oh, and Tyrion is being sent to King's Landing. To do what? "Rule! You will serve as Hand of the King in my absence." Well, that should be fun. And Tyrion is supposed to keep an eye on potential treason fr