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George R.R. Martin Releases a Chapter From ‘Winds of Winter’ Ahead of ‘Game of Thrones’ Premiere

The chapter takes place in The Eyrie before a tournament of knights is held

Warning: Spoilers ahead.

George R.R. Martin released a chapter from his upcoming book, “Winds of Winter,” on Thursday through his official website.

The book is the sixth installment in the “Song of Ice and Fire” series, which serves as the basis for the hit HBO fantasy series “Game of Thrones.”

In the chapter, Sansa Stark is living in The Eyrie under the assumed name Alayne Stone. She is posing as Petyr Baelish’s bastard daughter. Baelish is now Lord Protector of The Vale after killing Lysa Arryn by throwing her out The Eyrie’s Moon Door.

Sansa is trying her hardest to care for Lord Robert, her young cousin and Lord of the Vale. In an effort to make Robert feel safe, Sansa and Baelish have arranged a tournament among the knights of the Vale, the winners of which will be chosen to become Lord Robert’s personal guard.

Baelish has arranged a marriage between Sansa and Ser Harrold Hardyng, one of the knights who will fight in the tournament. Harrold is none to pleased to be betrothed to Sansa, however, as he believes she is a bastard. Sansa confesses her misgivings to Baelish, who tells her she must “Charm him. Entrance him. Bewitch him.”

In this portion of the excerpt, Lord Robert (“Sweetrobin”) has learned Ser Harrold will arrive soon:

“I hate that Harry,” Sweetrobin said when she was gone. “He calls me cousin, but he’s just waiting for me to die so he can take the Eyrie. He thinks I don’t know, but I do.”

“Your lordship should not believe such nonsense,” Alayne said. “I’m sure Ser Harrold loves you well.” And if the gods are good, he will love me too. Her tummy gave a little flutter. “He doesn’t,” Lord Robert insisted. “He wants my father’s castle, that’s all, so he pretends.” The boy clutched the blanket to his pimply chest. “I don’t want you to marry him, Alayne. I am the Lord of the Eyrie, and I forbid it.” He sounded as if he were about to cry. “You should marry me instead. We could sleep in the same bed every night, and you could read me stories.”

No man can wed me so long as my dwarf husband still lives somewhere in this world. Queen Cersei had collected the head of a dozen dwarfs, Petyr claimed, but none were Tyrion’s. “Sweetrobin, you must not say such things. You are the Lord of the Eyrie and Defender of the Vale, and you must wed a highborn lady and father a son to sit in the High Hall of House Arryn after you are gone.”

Robert wiped his nose. “But I want — ” She put a finger to his lips. “I know what you want, but it cannot be. I am no fit wife for you. I am bastard born.” “I don’t care. I love you best of anyone.”

You are such a little fool.

Read the full chapter here.

No release date has been set for “Winds of Winter,” but fans of the franchise can look forward to the fifth season of “Game of Thrones” premiering on April 12.

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