What a fight that was, and what a foe. The Smiling Knight was a madman, cruelty and chivalry all jumbled up together, but he did not know the meaning of fear. And Dayne, with Dawn in hand... The outlaw’s longsword had so many notches by the end that Ser Arthur had stopped to let him fetch a new one. “It’s that white sword of yours I want,” the robber knight told him as they resumed, though he was bleeding from a dozen wounds by then. “Then you shall have it, ser,” the Sword of the Morning replied, and made an end of it. The world was simpler in those days, Jaime thought, and men as well as swords were made of finer steel. Or fifteen? They were all in their graves now, the Sword of the Morning and the Smiling Knight, the White Bull and Prince Lewyn, Ser Oswell Whent with his black humor, earnest Jon Darry, Simon Toyne and his Kingswood Brotherhood, bluff old Sumner Crakehall. And me, that boy I was... when did he die, I wonder? When I donned the white cloak? When I opened Aerys’s throat? That boy had wanted to be Ser Arthur Dayne, but someplace along the way he had become the Smiling Knight instead. When he heard the door open, he closed the White Book and stood to receive his Sworn Brothers. Ser Osmund Kettleblack was the first to arrive. He gave Jaime a grin, as if they were old brothers-in-arms. “Ser Jaime,” he said, “had you looked like this t’other night, I’d have known you at once.” “Would you indeed?” Jaime doubted that. The servants had bathed him, shaved him, and washed and brushed his hair. When he looked in a glass, he no longer saw the man who had crossed the riverlands with Brienne... but he did not see himself either. His face was thin and hollow, and he had lines under his eyes. I look like some old man. “Stand by your seat, ser.” Kettleblack complied. The other Sworn Brothers filed in one by one. “Sers,” Jaime said in a formal tone when all five had assembled, “who guards the king?” “My brothers Ser Osney and Ser Osfryd,” Ser Osmund replied. “And my brother Ser Garlan,” said the Knight of Flowers. “Will they keep him safe?” “They will, my lord.” “Be seated, then.” The words were ritual. Before the seven could meet in session, the king’s safety must be assured. Ser Boros and Ser Meryn sat to his right, leaving an empty chair between them for Ser Arys Oakheart, off in Dorne. Ser Osmund, Ser Balon, and Ser Loras took the seats to his left. The old and the new. Jaime wondered if that meant anything.