The Tenth Day of the Third Moon, of the year 291 A.C.
Many things have changed in the past two years, but many things have not.
The Greyjoy Rebellion went, mostly as I thought it would. Stannis Baratheon successfully crushed the Iron Fleet led by Victarion Greyjoy in a battle off the coast of Fair Isle. Nearly all of the lords of the Iron Islands surrendered without putting up a fight after their fleet was destroyed.
The few lords and Ironborn that refused to surrender to a bunch of 'Greenlanders', made their way to Pyke. It did little good. The Siege of Pyke was a repeat of what happened in canon.
Once Pyke had fallen, Jon Arryn convinced Robert to accept Balon's surrender and allow him to retain his lordship. A nine-year-old Theon, Balon's only remaining son, was given to Lord Stark as a hostage to ensure Balon adheres to the restrictions placed on the Iron Islands.
The one thing I was upset about was the release of Euron Greyjoy. I would have been beyond happy to hear news of his death, but it wasn't meant to be. I am curious how he will be viewed by his fellow idiots.
Unlike canon, Euron came up with a horrible plan and was captured. After spending eight months in a dungeon, I can't think his sanity benefited from that. Or that he was welcomed back to the Iron Islands with open arms.
Regardless of how he's viewed, I'm playing it safe and saying he will be more blood-thirsty than he was in the show. Especially since the Lannister's foiled his attack and held him captive for close to a year. Plans will have to be made to deal with him.
After the rebellion, things went back to normal, mostly. By my tenth name day, I was already around 150 centimeters tall and weighed 45 kilograms. I was now the average size of boys of three and ten.
While we may have been of similar size, that's where our similarities ended. I was as strong as most of the squires, but my sense of balance and flexibility is something none of them could replicate.
Ser Broom expanded the training for the pages to include knives, archery, and horseback riding. He refused to allow any page to pick up a sword or any other weapon for that matter. While that annoyed me, I made the best of it.
I dedicated myself to mastering archery and using knives. Ser Broom wasn't happy when he saw me practicing with throwing knives, but after watching me for a minute, he allowed me to continue during my own time.
Another noted change, after a year, Ser Broom began having the other pages and squires follow my example of exercise routines. I assume he was trying to replicate my freakish strength by having the other boys mimic my use of modern weight training and stretching. There was a noticeable increase in the overall strength and flexibility of the other kids. But none of them were even close to matching me.
Without a doubt, my favorite part of the training is horseback riding. It's incredibly freeing and exciting. Nothing can discourage me from seizing every opportunity to get out from behind the walls of Casterly Rock and gallop through the countryside.
Shortly after Tywin returned to Casterly Rock, I took Maester Volarik's notes to him with my theory. I was pleasantly surprised when Tywin took my advice of not using the maester for matters of high importance. He employed several 'assistants' to help the maester with his duties and ravens.
I know Tywin was taking my advice with regard to the maester, but I'm not sure what other measures he took. Knowing Tywin, he took several extra precautions to feed spies false information.
Shortly after my talk with Tywin, my lessons with the maester changed. Measter Creylen went from teaching a broad range of fields, to a focus on history, economics, and the noble houses of Westeros.
Tywin appears to be grooming me for lordship by focusing my education on city management and defense. But it was coming at the cost of my instruction into other fields, such as seafaring and engineering. It was flattering and annoying at the same time.
I now had to spend my limited free time, which I had precious little of, doing self-study. The remainder of my day was spent carrying-out my duties and spending time with my family.
Mother was still insistent we spend as much time together as possible, and Martyn and Willem were becoming little terrors. The two of them had a mischievous streak a mile wide, and it wasn't uncommon to see them fleeing from an angry cousin.
Speaking of little mischievous people, Tyrion was scarcely seen anymore. He was kind and courteous to me when we did meet, but he no longer had time to spare on a young boy. It seems he has begun indulging in whores.
While it would be nice to improve my relationship with Tyrion, there really isn't much I can do until Tyrion matures. That should only take ten or twenty years.
I push thoughts of Tyrion out of my mind as I return my attention to the present.
I'm standing attendance as the essential members of Casterly Rock discuss matters of state. Except for filling a goblet every now and then, I'm trying to follow along with what is being decided and why. I try to never miss a learning opportunity.
As the meeting was about to adjourn, Uncle Gerion silently stood up. With a rare look of resolve and determination on his face, he addressed the group. "Next moon, I will be sailing out of Lannisport." Uncle Gerion took a deep breath before continuing, "I intend to sail to Valyria and recover our ancestral sword, Brightroar."
I knew this happened in canon, but I thought Uncle Gerion would change his mind this time. His bastard, Joy Hill, was only a year old. To Tywin's displeasure, Gerion moved Joy into Casterly Rock shortly after her birth.
No one talks about it, especially Uncle Gerion, but most of the castle believe Joy's mother didn't survive the birthing. The Laughing Lion went months without a smile for anything but Joy. The way my uncle treats his bastard, I was convinced he would be staying in Casterly Rock, and that I wasted weeks studying Valyria.
I will not sit by and allow this damn fool carelessly sail off to his death. He means too much to this family!
Uncle Gerion took his seat as a commotion broke out among those present. Even Tywin looked conflicted, but he remained silent.
Each man, starting with my father, attempted to talk Uncle Gerion out of his suicidal quest. In fact, suicide was mentioned several times. No matter what points were raised, Uncle Gerion refused to give-in.
Unable to allow the kindest man in Casterly Rock to run off to his death, and leave his child without parents, I step up to the meeting table. I stand silently until Uncle Gerion turns to look at me, standing beside him.
With a sad smile, "Come to talk me out of going as well, nephew?" Uncle Gerion asked.
I ignored the table full of old men staring at me and focused on looking into Uncle Gerion's eyes. "As stupid as your decision is, uncle, I am not stupid enough to waste my breath on arguing something I now you will not do." I can't help smirking at the man as his smile becomes more genuine.
"That being said, I might as well help you succeed," I said as I pull parchment and an inkwell towards me. Snatching the quill resting in front of Darin Lannister, I begin drawing as I speak. "The first challenge you will encounter is a willing and experienced crew. You will most likely have to purchase slaves in Volantis and promise them freedom and a home here in the Westerlands if they so desire.
"The second challenge you will face is navigating the Smoking Sea. It's most likely a combination of steam and volcanic ash from The Doom. The visibility will be low, the air on deck will burn the lungs, and the depths of the water will vary greatly." I said as I finished a rough sketch of a compass.
"Now, for the navigation, we will have to create a compass. A device that always points north, no matter how you turn it. That will allow you to keep your heading when you can't navigate by the stars or landmarks." I explain while I begin to draw a second item.
"For the air, the cheapest solution is a mask with a type of filter to help purify the air you breathe. It may not be necessary while out at sea, but I'm sure you will need it once you make land." I said as I finish drawing a crude-looking filtration mask.
"Now, for your ship to actually make land, you will have to make some adjustments to the ship's hull. You will have to remove every bit of iron from the hull, nails included. They will have to be replaced with copper nails. Once that is done, you will have to cover the entire hull in copper plating." At this point, my drawing of a ship's hull is nearly complete.
"A copper-plated hull will be crucial for..." A large calloused hand unexpectedly lays on top of my hand, stopping all attempts to finish my drawing.
Looking up at the owner of the hand, I'm confused to see Tywin standing there staring at me with a calculating look.
"That will be enough," Tywin softly commands. Turning back to the men present in the room, Tywin issues a much sterner command. "Leave us."
Well this came together faster than I thought it would.
A two year time skip, but it's pretty vital to Lancel.
Enjoy and leave a comment!