Chapter 7 Summary

Catelyn watches as her fifteen-year-old son, Robb, the King in the North, delivers his terms to Ser Cleos Frey. Although the Freys have allied themselves with the Starks and the Tullys, Ser Cleos married a Lannister and so fought beside them. Now, Robb offers to return his hostages, save Jaime Lannister, in exchange for his sisters, Sansa and Arya. He also demands that his father's remains and his greatsword, Ice, be returned. He demands that the north and the riverlands be considered a separate kingdom, ruled by him. The terms are not very generous, Catelyn thinks, and they are unlikely to lead to the return of her daughters, Sansa and Arya. Her son has other concerns now. He means to send Theon Greyjoy to treat with his father, Lord Balon of the Iron Islands, which Catelyn thinks a mistake. She also knows that Robb wants her to leave so that he will no longer have a mother around. She goes to see her father, Lord Hoster Tully, who is dying. There, she finds her uncle, Ser Brynden the Blackfish, who commands Robb's outriders. He reports that Lord Tywin has moved his troops to the Harrenhal, a monstrous castle that was the seat of King Harren until he was defeated by Aegon the Conqueror's dragons. Ser Brynden explains that Tywin wants Robb to attack him. To the west, the Lannisters are raising another host. Finally, Robb will need to move soon unless he intends to lose his lords, who want to return to their castles. Catelyn suggests that they send a messenger to Renly Baratheon, who claims the Iron Throne and who is traveling north from Highgarden.