On the morning, the Steadwaters were called to an audience with King Joffery. His grand pavilion had been setup flying a conspicuous crowned Lannister lion rather than the crowned Stag of Baretheon. Wesley had finally been feeling much better and relieved to the King himself the outcome of our mission, and its dramatic end by becoming outcasts at Storm’s End. The King listened with little amusement, asking constantly for the actual number of troops we’ve managed to gather rather than whose allegiance we had managed to secure, until it came time to delivered Renly’s message to King Joffery. Wesley, deciding it would be the better part of wisdom to obliquely deliver the challenge, slid off his gauntlet, and dramatically struck his uncle Sebastian, hard. Thus, was delivered Renly’s ‘message’ to the Lannisters. Impressed with such a show of loyalty, King Joffery toasted the Steadwaters for “taking a blow for the King”.
For fulfilling our mission King Joffery also granted us 300 gold dragons. Wesley, fulfilling our promise to Lord Wagstaff, presented young Ser Humfrey Wagstaff, asking for appointment to the Kingsguard. Thus, young Wagstaff, fulfilling his father’s highest hopes, knelt before the boy-king and offered his sword and arose a brother of the Kingsguard. Both Steadwaters and Lannisters, it appears, pay their debts.
Both Wesley and Sebastian were invited to sit at high table for the dinner feast. Darrius seemed to have some sort of bad blood with Lord Tarly. There seemed to be some personal mutual back and forth between them. Meanwhile, Ser Danien-Rimchurch somehow directly insulted Lord Paxter Redwyne, who gave (very good as it turned out) advice to befriend the cooking staff. Thus, the Steadwaters survived another night at high table with King Joffery.
In the morning we were summoned to break our fast with Ser Kevan Lannister and no other than Lord Tywin Lannister himself. While Ser Kevan updated us on the latest going ons in the realm, Tywin watched silently, as if weighing us. We expressed our grievance over the unfortunate death of Lord Wesley’s Lady Mother, and concern over the capture of our current Lady Steadwater by Lord Renly. Tywin broke in, challenging our ability to ‘take care of our women’, especially the current Lady Steadwater who was bethrothed to Wesley under the late King Robert’s grace. Ser Rhean offered a rescue mission for the Lady, but the matter was quickly laughed off as the Deadbow quickly changed the subject, asking about House Steadwater’s survivors from the battle with Stannis. Only a unit of green Stormsland guerrillas remained. They were happy, perhaps overjoyed, to be led away from the front lines of the King’s army to join our 500 mercenary troops.
Kevan and Tywin then revealed to us two new tasks we were to perform on the march to King’s Landing. The Dreadbow would help Ser Gregor Clegane, known as ‘The Mountain that Rides’, outriding for the King’s army along the path to King’s Landing as well as foraging. All of House Steadwater, along with another Lordly House, would receive the honor of accompany the King on his ‘rides’ out into the country as his personal bodyguards. Tywin, obviously the power in the room, suggested that we keep His Grace, whom he referred to as ‘that stupid idiot’, away from the smallfolk as much as possible. Kevan, and the Kingsguard, would assist in clearing the smallfolk along the path ahead as much as possible. Yet if we managed to run into anybody, we were expected to help His Grace handle the affair ‘diplomatically’.
House Garner joined us on that day we went with the King. His Grace quickly summoned both the Dreadbow and Darrius to scout ahead for commoners. Both did their best to guide the party away from smallfolk. However, we still alighted on a small family with a baby on the side of the road. King Joffery stopped to greet them, and kiss the baby, when suddenly the baby threw up on the young monarch. His Grace immediately dropped the baby. The Steadwaters were immediately in action. Darrius caught the King; the Sebastian apprehended the man, his longsword to the fool’s throat; while Clancy drew his own longsword and told the woman, children and whomever was still in the village to flee at once. The King, uncharacteristically, seemed more upset at the stains to his clothes and boot, nevertheless delivered a stout kick with his mailed boots to the infant before remounting his horse and continuing the ride.
The rest of the day passed uneventfully, as did the march to King’s Landing. During the march, Ser Danien struck a friendship with Ser Follard, a religious minor noble who seemed to always be preaching.
King’s Landing stood virtually undefended, apart from the Lord Commander of the Kingsguard, Ser Baristan Selmy, called the Bold, who rode out to greet House Steadwater and Ser Kevan before the gates of the city. There Sebastian Steadwater accepted the surrender of King’s Landing. They touched swords, and thus averted another sacking of the capital. After several days of management duties, the Steadwaters were suddenly called again for an audience with Ser Kevin.
The King had gone missing.