Cersei stood, her red gown sparkling as its rubies caught the light and smiled kindly. "Ser Barristan Selmy, stand forth."

Ser Barristan turned from his place at the foot of the King's Iron Throne, quietly going to one knee as he bowed his head. "Your Grace, I am yours to command."

"Rise, Ser Barristan," Cersei Lannister said. "You may remove your helm."

"My Lady?" Standing, the old knight took off his high white helm, though he seemed uncertain and confused.

"You have served our realm faithfully, all of westeros praises you for your service. Yet now I fear your service is at an end." The court stirred, watching on from all across the hall as the Queen spoke. "Lay down your heavy burden ser, it is the wish of your King and council that you would find some rest for yourself after your years of service."

"My... burden? I fear... I... I do not..." The knight seemed to slump into his armor and Sansa could see how old he was, he seemed to almost shrivel away. Collapsing into himself as he stared up to the Queen with confusion written across his face and tone.

The Queen smiled and with a voice as soft as silk, "do not fret good ser, your burden was heavy but now you may rest."

Finally Ser Barristan stirred. "But I am a Kingsguard, my oaths are sworn! It is my sacred duty as it is my brothers to protect the King, our vows are taken for life. Only death may relieve our sacred trust." He spoke softly but impassioned, gaining some spirit to stand. Spirit which his king swiftly crushed.

A cruel and mocking laugh springing from his high perch atop the Iron Throne. "Whose death! Yours or my fathers? Your too old, you let a pig kill my father, I can't reward such senility." The court shuddered to life, springing to clutch onto their king's words and join his mockery. The old knight stood now, silent as his eyes swept around him as the hall joined in their king's mirth.

Sansa felt his gaze sweep over her, pausing for an instant as they caught her eyes, watching the spectacle from their little roost beside her guards in Lannister red. He stood at last, giving a final plea. " Your Grace, I was chosen for the White Swords in my twenty-third year. It was all I ever dreamed, from the moment I took the sword in my hand." He paused, his eyes seeming to stare at another world, a younger time. "I renounced my lands, my house, I gave them to my cousin and then the girl I was to wed was wedded with him, I had no need for lands, sons or my own life, mine was for the realm. Ser Gerold Hightower himself heard my vows... to ward the king with all my strength... to give my blood for his... I fought beside the White Bull and Prince Lewyn of Dorne... beside Ser Arthur Dayne, the Sword of the Morning. I served, King Aerys, King Jaehaerys and then your own father... three kings..."

"And all of them dead." The Kings cruel rejoinder was spat back in Barristan's face.

"Your time is done," Cersei Lannister announced. "Joffrey requires men who are young and strong around him. "The Council has determined that Ser Jaime Lannister shall take your place as the Lord Commander."

"The Kingslayer," Ser Barristan's voice was cold, hard with contempt, and anger warred on his frown. "The false knight who slew his own king, one he had sworn to defend."

"Have a care for your words, ser." warned the queen. "You are speaking our beloved brother, the Kings own blood."

Now Lord Varys spoke, softly, kindly and with a gentle smile. "We have not forgotten your good service, the King has gained Lord Tywin's agreement to set aside a handsome tract of land nearby to Lannisport and he will give to you sufficient resources to build you a stout keep and see to your needs.

Ser Barristan now looked to him, voice even more stern and loud. Loud enough to silence even the nervous tittering of the court and their whispers. "A hall to die in, and men to bury me. I thankyou lords... but I spit upon your pity." He reached up and undid the clasps to the heavy cloak of white about his shoulders, undoing them to let it fall ignomiously to the ground. His helmet fell with a clang. "I am a knight," he spoke through angry breaths, "I shall die a knight."

"A naked knight, it would seem," quipped Littlefinger.
They all laughed then, all the court. Joffrey on his throne, the lords in attendance, Janos Slynt, Queen Cersei and Sandor Clegane, and even the other men of the Kingsguard, the five who had been his brothers till a moment ago.

Ser Barristan stood still again, he stood shamed, too angry to speak. Finally his answer came. His sword slithering free of its scabbard. Ser Boros and Ser Meryn stepped forward then and all the court froze. Not a sound could be heard as the Kingsguard stood between Ser Barristan and his king.

Violence, again? Sansa sobbed silently then. This was not like her songs at all.

Ser Boros drew his own sword and stepped further towards his former brother, alone in the petitioners space. The crowd moving to hug the walls as he carefully edged forward.

Now did Ser Barristan speak. "I am an old man, true that is, but I would like to think myself a little wise." He spoke with measure and care. "I am old. I am true to my word. Now my king has broken my vows, I shall speak as a knight only, not a Kingsguard. Not as his friend, for my friends, for Ser Gerold Hightower, for Ser Oswell Whent, for my prince Rhaegar."

The King screamed, "Treason... Treason! Kill him!"

Hope You Enjoyed This!

Rereading this... I think its actually best with how it ends!

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