King (ugh) Joffrey sits upon the Iron Throne and tells his council he would like to be crowned within a fortnight. And today, he'll be accepting oaths of loyalty from his loyal councillors. That's a good move, which makes me suspect that it's Cersei's idea. Make people pick a side right away, in front of everybody. Ned hands a scroll to Ser Barristan. Selmy notes that it has King Robert's unbroken seal. He begins to read: "Lord Eddard Stark is herein named Protector of the Realm, to rule as Regent until the heir come of age." Cersei asks to see the scroll, and Selmy obligingly hands it over. She looks down at Nedand says, "Is this meant to be your shield, Lord Stark? A piece of paper." She tears it in half. Huh. I guess Ned's assumption was that everybody was as into honor and duty as he was. Once you've got something signed by the (dead) king, everything's gravy, right? Cersei doesn't care that the scroll contained the words of the king, because they have a new king. She recommends to Ned that he bend the knee and swear loyalty to the throne. That's a good suggestion. I'm with Cersei here. Ned says, "Your son has no claim to the throne." Well, it's on now, I guess. Cersei tells Selmy to take Ned. Selmy steps forward with the rest of the king's guards. Ned's personal guards also draw swords. So does the Hound. Joffrey shrieks, "Kill him! Kill all of them! I command it!" Yeah! That's how to behave as a king: just start demanding executions left and right. I'm sorry I didn't see it before, but Joffrey's got the right idea of how to be royalty. Gigantic weddings and plenty of executions! Ned, confident that he's got a trump card, tells the leader of the Goldcloaks, "Commander. Take the Queen and her children into custody." The men of the watch draw their weapons. "I want no bloodshed. Tell your men to lay down their words. No one needs to die." Then the men of the watch stab Ned's men to death. Littlefinger comes up behind Ned and puts a dagger to his throat. And we end on Littlefinger's awesome line, ""I did warn you not to trust me." Ned, you're terrible at politics.
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