A Lannister always pays their debts. Six words, six deadly thoughts. Only a fool or a child hears our motto and thinks it’s about money.
“The house that puts family first will always defeat the house that puts the whims and wishes of its sons and daughters.” My father said those words when he betrothed me to Robert – a brood mare to seal an alliance. I would have hated him, but for the chance to be with Jamie again.
On my wedding day, Robert stood beside me and kissed me – but all I saw was Jamie, standing there behind the king, his honor guard, with his white cloak, golden armor shining in the sun, the ivory pommel of his sword in his firm hand. That night, Robert’s breath stinking of wine, his hands squeezing my flesh, it was Jamie that I imagined making love to me. It was only fair that I should have this illusion – I knew Robert was thinking of Lyanna even before he cried out her name.
Now Robert is gone and Joffrey is king. My son, symbol of a forbidden love. We do not choose who we love – I knew I loved Jamie, that we were destined to be together. Just as I knew that I hated Tyrion when he came into the world, killing our mother.
I would do anything for my children… I will not let any of you tear down and hurt my family – not you, Renly; not you, Stannis; not you, Robb, “King in the North.” You have crossed a Lannister – and a Lannister always pays their debts.
Me sister barely flowered before a man in bear skins came to take her. No fight, no arguing, no negotiations – one day she was making us stew and the next she was gone. We Free Folk love freely, but I told meself then and there that any man who tried to take me when I didn’t want it would pay a high price.
One day I went deep into the woods to hunt. In the mud I found the tracks of men and horses with iron shoes. Rangers, they call themselves. We call them Crows. While I counted the tracks, I smelled smoke.
By the time I returned to the village, it was too late. The huts were burning, the crops trampled, and the village headman lay there all shot full of arrows. Me mother was gone – fled, eaten, carried off, I never saw – and the rest of the women as well. But I knew in me heart she was gone.
Me mother died when a band of Crows from the Wall burned our village. They burned our village because they can’t stand our way of life.
I made them regret that.