Tyrion: After Eddard Stark’s execution, Tyrion is sent to King’s Landing to rule as Hand of the King on his father’s behalf in order to curb some of Joffrey’s less prudent impulses. Highly unlike the rest of his family, Tyrion decides to rule with justice and honor, and he performs many positive deeds over the next few months to combat the level of deceit and nefarious methods that have become commonplace in the capitol. He is continuously disillusioned at the unwillingness of the public to accept him as their champion. They insist on portraying him as a twisted demon who is just as bad as the rest of his family. Earlier, after he escaped from Lysa Arryn’s ‘justice’ at the Eyrie, he met the prostitute Shae on the road and has brought her with him to King’s Landing. Gradually he falls in love with her, but after being accused of Joffrey’s murder, Shae testifies against him in the trial. She lies and ridicules him and her testimony condemns him.
Tyrion demands a trial by combat, so the gods (manifested in the sword hand of his chosen champion) can judge him as either guilty or innocent. Cersei and the crown’s champion is the ferocious beast, Gregor Clegane – and Prince Oberyn Martell volunteers as Tyrion’s champion. He seeks vengeance over Clegane who raped and killed his sister and her children (the family of Prince Rhaegar Targaryen, Mad King Aerys’ heir). Oberyn Martell, the Red Viper, manages to wound Gregor Clegane fatally but he dies first when his eyes are torn from his head and his skull cracked. Tyrion has lost his trial and in the following days, he awaits execution in the dungeons of the Red Keep.
His brother, Jaime, becomes his savior. Jaime and Varys the Spider manage to smuggle Tyrion out of the Keep and onto a ship headed for Pentos. However, before Tyrion leaves Jaime confesses an old truth to him: as a young man Tyrion fell in love with a crofter’s daughter and married her in secret. When their father Tywin found out he manipulated Jaime into telling Tyrion that the girl was really a paid whore and was only hired to make a man out of him. Without Jaime knowing his intentions, Tywin proceeded to have the girl raped by every guardsmen of Casterly Rock while Tyrion stood by and watched – and ultimately, Tyrion was forced to rape her as well. Since then, Tyrion has believed that the girl was a prostitute but as Jaime leads him through the dungeons of the Red Keep in King’s Landing, he confesses that the girl was who she appeared to be, a crofter’s daughter chance met on the road.
Tyrion is filled with hatred at this confession. He curses his brother, then creeps into his father’s chambers and kills him. Finding Shae in his father’s bed, he kills her too before making it aboard the ship taking him east to Pentos.
He is met in Pentos by magister Illyrio Mopatis, the man who housed and supported Daenerys and Viserys Targaryen before they left with Khal Drogo and his Dothraki horde. Illyrio sends Tyrion further east towards Slaver’s Bay to meet Daenerys. Along the way, however, Tyrion’s identity as a Lannister becomes known to Ser Jorah Mormont who has been living in misery since Daenerys exiled him. In Tyrion, Mormont recognizes the means to redeem himself with Daenerys by presenting her with an enemy. He kidnaps Tyrion, but soon both of them are captured and sold as slaves. Tyrion befriends a dwarf woman called Penny, who used to share a mummer’s act with her dwarf brother who is now dead. They would ride a dog and pig each and joust with faux lances to the amusement of onlookers. Tyrion agrees to become part of her act, taking her brother’s place, and his wicked sense of humor amuses his master sufficiently enough to enable them to survive.
They journey towards Meereen, accompanying the slavers who mean to remove Daenerys from power. Once outside the city, Tyrion manages for him and Penny to move inside the walls but they are thrown into the reopened fighting pits as entertainment before he has a chance to see Daenerys. He even misses the spectacle of Daenerys as she flies off on the back of her gigantic black dragon because he is detained inside the walls of the fighting pit.
1 Mark Buchanan, ”A Song of Fantasy Traditions: How A Song of Ice and Fire Subverts Traditions of Women in Tolkienesque Fantasy” (Honors essay, University of British Columbia, 2014).
2 Caroline Spector, ”Power and Feminism in Westeros” in Beyond the Wall: Exploring George R.R. Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire, ed. James Lowder (Dallas: BenBella Books, 2012), 171.
3 Matthew Williamson, ”An Examination of Gender in Westeros” (University of Illinois at Chicago, June 2014), 1-2.
4 Westeros, official fansite. ”How Many Books Will There Be and What Are Their Names?” The Song of Ice and Fire Archive.
5 Mark Buchanan, ”A Song of Fantasy Traditions: How A Song of Ice and Fire Subverts Traditions of Women in Tolkienesque Fantasy” (Honors essay, University of British Columbia, 2014).
6 Rebecca Jones, “A Game of Genders: Comparing Depictions of Empowered Women between A Game of Thrones Novel and Television Series”, Journal of Student Research at University of Wisconsin-River Falls (Volume 1, Issue 3, 2012), 14-21.
7 Lowder, James, ed. Beyond the Wall: Exploring George R.R. Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire (Dallas: BenBella Books, 2012), 169-188.
8 Oxford’s Online Dictionary, ”Hegemony”. Accessed November 25, 2014.