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"Trials and Tribulations of the Oathkeeper," by DeadlyMaelstrom711. Chapter 1: The Oathkeeper. YEAR 298 AC King's Landing, capital of the Seven Kingdoms... Bells ring out in the capital city of King's Landing. Lord Jon Arryn of the Eyrie, Warden of the East and Hand of the King, had unexpectedly passed away. As his body lay in the throne room, the Silent Sisters prepare him for the upcoming burial. Elsewhere, in the balcony where the noble ladies of the court stand, Queen Cersei of House Lannister is seen contemplating as she leans against the edge of the railing, taking a moment to observe Lord Arryn's corpse. The sound of someone's approaching footsteps breaks her concentration. The person in question is revealed to be her twin brother, Sir Jaime. One of the most skilled swordsmen in all of Westeros, Jaime was appointed as the youngest member of the Kingsguard at age 15 to the last of the Targaryen kings, Aerys the Second -- more infamously remember as "the Mad King." Unfortunately, he gained an infamous reputation throughout the Seven Kingdoms as "Kingslayer", "Oathbreaker" and "A Man Without Honor" (much to his irritation) for stabbing King Aerys in the back at the foot of the Iron Throne itself, thereby violating his sacred vows to protect him. As Jaime leans against the edge, he looks to counsel his twin sister. "As your brother, I feel it's my duty to warn you: You worry too much. It's starting to show." "And you never worry about anything," Cersei responds. "When we were 7, you jumped off the cliffs at Casterly Rock. A 100-foot drop into the water. And you were never afraid." "There was nothing to be afraid of until you told father," Jaime said humorously before deepening his tone of voice to imitate their father. "'We're Lannisters. And Lannisters don't act like fools.'" "What if Jon Arryn told someone?" "But who would he tell?" "My husband," Cersei answers despondently. Jaime merely shrugged his shoulders. "If he told the king, both our heads would be skewered on the city gates by now. Whatever Jon Arryn knew or didn't know, it died with him. And Robert will choose a new Hand of the King, someone to do his job while he's off fucking boars and hunting whores. Or is it the other way around? And life will go on." "You should be Hand of the King." "That's an honor I can do without. Their days are too long, their lives are too short." —Elsewhere,— In his chambers stood the Crown Prince and heir to the Iron Throne, Daveth Baratheon. He had been busy packing whatever necessities are required for the journey to Winterfell in the North, expecting the climate to be cold. Standing in front of a mirror to properly tuck his royal attire, He didn't let the expression on his face to show, but deep down Daveth still had a hard time coping with Jon Arryn's death; the Lord of the Eyrie was like a second grandfather to him. Wise and prudent, Jon essentially tutored Daveth on how to rule and often presided over Small Council meetings together with Lord Arryn since his father, Robert of the House Baratheon, First of His Name, King of the Andals and the First Men, Lord of the Seven Kingdoms and Protector of the Realm, had no particular interest in ruling his kingdom and was more than happy to pass on the responsibilities to Lord Arryn and his eldest son despite the youth's age. Since then, popular rumors began to circulate that it was Daveth who ruled the Seven Kingdoms in practice if not in name. A true protégé of his maternal grandfather Lord Tywin Lannister, Daveth appeared to possess an extreme level of intellect and cunning, allowing him to outmaneuver his political rivals such as Petyr Baelish and even his mother Cersei Lannister with relative ease. At an incredibly fast pace, Daveth had demonstrated such great promise as a highly capable administrator and skilled warrior in his own right with a reputation for achieving efficient yet effective results in a short amount of time without reneging his word. As such, he is known throughout Westeros as the "Oathkeeper." Daveth cared little about nicknames or what other people thought of him. Unfortunately, his fame and reputation caused a tense rift to develop between him and his father King Robert and the two became estranged. The royal court would soon be divided into two rival factions between those who supported the Prince and had the good of the realm in mind and opportunistic sycophants who supported the King who felt increasingly threatened by his son's rapidly growing power and influence. His thoughts were broken by a knock on the door. "Come in," Daveth answers. The door opens and in steps in Bernadette, a handmaiden to Daveth's mother Queen Cersei. She politely bows her head. "Forgive my intrusion, my Prince. But the Queen has requested your presence at the gates." "Very well. Tell her I am on my way." Bernadette bows once more and left to inform Cersei. Daveth grabs his belongings and inhales sharply through his nostrils. 'And so, it begins,' he thought. 'The search for a new Hand.' Upon exiting the city gates, soldiers holding the Baratheon and Lannister sigils accompanied the carriage carrying most of the royal family, except for King Robert (40) and Prince Daveth – who instead chose to ride up front mounted on their horses. The royal party had long departed for the long march to the North on the Kingsroad. "This would've been going a lot faster if we didn't have any certain baggage slowing us down!" Robert gruffly complained. "Come now, father, I'm sure you wouldn't even consider leaving our family behind, would you? We have a long road ahead of us, so certainly it wouldn't hurt to at least maintain a steady pace so the others can keep up." "Bah! Seven Hells, sometimes you're just like your mother! The sooner we get there, the sooner I'll have food and wine in my belly!" Daveth shook his head in annoyance. Although a loyal, dutiful, and respectful son, he was irritated by Robert's penchant for drinking and sleeping with any pretty woman whenever he could. It was no secret that he hated his father for emotionally (sometimes physically) abusing Cersei and his unapologetic marital infidelities. He knew how poorly his father treated his mother and how unhappy their marriage was. Daveth learned the difference between right and wrong as he was often exposed to heated arguments and occasional beatings no matter how hard Cersei tried to hide it from him; since then, Daveth swore to be a different kind of king and vowed not to be like a man Robert was. His relationship with his mother, on the other hand, was sometimes complex. At times Cersei adored Daveth and held him close, other times Cersei would treat him coolly and once in a while scowl at him without warning – something Daveth felt was because of how his very presence reminded Cersei of her failed, unhappy marriage. Joffrey, his younger brother and second in line to the Iron Throne after him, was an arrogant, sadistic fop with a massive sense of entitlement. Everyone in King's Landing knew how they hated each other for many years – in his eyes, Daveth was everything that Joffrey was not and vastly superior: Daveth was respected by the other lords and well-loved by his subjects, fiercely intelligent, a brilliant administrator and a powerful warrior – having been trained by their uncle Jaime Lannister and Sir Barristan Selmy, the Lord Commander of the Kingsguard. Joffrey had none of Daveth's traits and was only skilled with a crossbow; Joffrey was jealous of and envied his older brother's successes. On the other hand, his younger siblings, Myrcella and Tommen, idolized Daveth. He cared deeply about them and helped his mother raise them ever since they were born. He took care of them and played with them whenever he could. Whenever he had to tend to royal functions outside of King's Landing or negotiate trade deals for extended periods, the two younger blonde-haired children were always the first ones to greet Daveth – always happy to see their big brother. He could say that he's on well enough terms with his paternal uncles, Lords Stannis and Renly Baratheon – even though they saw each other daily. Renly at times gave Daveth a headache, with Stannis noticing the prince takes his duties more seriously than any of his brothers. Among his maternal relatives in House Lannister, Daveth held great respect for his maternal uncles Jaime and Tyrion. Jaime and Daveth often sparred in the courtyard and was left aghast with his nephew's performance in a tournament held in King's Landing last year. When Daveth received his knighthood on his sixteenth nameday, his father was insistent on staging a tournament (the first and perhaps the only time the Stag King was proud of his son). The joust had ended and all that remained was the melee. The match between Daveth and Sir Jaime lasted for almost what felt like an hour and, albeit both competitors were left utterly exhausted after matching each other blow-for-blow, the Young Stag stunned all in attendance by barely defeating the Golden Lion despite the youth's lack of experience. Daveth could've sworn he'd wounded Jaime's pride that day, though he couldn't tell. Tyrion was more approachable and, despite his dwarfism, Daveth could tell there was potential in his uncle where he could further hone his talents – provided he'd stop his lewdness. Even so, Daveth did appreciate the history books Tyrion gave him such as "The History of the Greater and the Lesser Houses" and "Lives of Four Kings" – as they kept his wits sharp.