|The Ironborn Invasion of the North|
|The Iron Islands||The North|
|Torric Greyjoy, Harren Greyjoy, Gwynesse Harlaw, Ragnarr Farwynd, Svenrir Farwynd, Arryk Volmark, Brander Pyke||Roose Bolton, Harold Snow, Jalabhar Quhuru Tal, Brandon Stark|
|22800 men; 413 longships; 140 warships;||49500 men; 35 ships|
|Rurik Greyjoy, Gwynesse Harlaw, Ragnarr Farwynd||Roose Bolton, Harold Snow, Jalabhar Quhuru Tal, Maggie Mormont, Lord Flint of the Fingers|
A conflict between the King of the Iron Islands, Torric Greyjoy, and the Lord Paramount of the North, Roose Bolton. It later evolved into a conflict between Torric Greyjoy and Brandon Stark, after he regained the North from House Bolton.
In the months following the death of Queen Daenerys Targaryen, the authority of the crown began to dwindle. Restless lords and unruly men began to press against the laws that bound the realm since the days of Aegon the Conqueror, and for the first time in several decades longships were seen off the coast of the North. Whether led by a few independant captains or ordered by Lord Paramount Torric himself, these ships began to loot and burn the countryside, causing the Northern smallfolk to turn to their lords for justice.
With these atrocities in mind, Roose Bolton headed south for the Grand Council, where he met and argued with Lord Paramount Torric Greyjoy - who had by then secretly crowned himself King of Salt and Rock. Roose Bolton drew his blade and threatened the life of Torric Greyjoy, who responded in kind. Both parties would eventually back down, though Torric would approach the Lord Hand Jasper Arryn, seeking justice. When the Hand seemed to make no moves towards arresting Lord Bolton, the Greyjoy's mood soured. He would eventually leave the Council in anger, sending a raven to his brother, Harren Greyjoy, instructing him to seek revenge.
The Early Battles
As the Northern party headed North following the Grand Council, they were attacked by a group of Ironmen who lay in wait for them about the Kingsroad. The battle was fierce, but ultimately resulted in an Ironborn victory, with Roose, his brother and heir Edderion, and several other Northern lords captured. Harold Snow, the Bastard of the Dreadfort, would escape to Moat Cailin on horseback, after taking the head of the beserker and raider Ragnarr Farwynd.
Lord Roose and the other captured lords are taken back to the Iron Islands as hostages. Roose Bolton is forced to agree to terms regarding the rule of the North, eventually agreeing to cede Bear Isle, Deepwood Motte, and paying two thousand golden dragons for his release. As the only blood of House Bolton to escape the attack, Harold Snow takes temporary control of the North, summoning a council to prepare its defense.
The Conquest of the Western Shore
Following the capture of Roose Bolton, King Torric Greyjoy ordered his men to reave the western coast of the North. Much of the Northern army was scattered and disunited, only just beginning to rally to the banners of Brandon Stark. Because of this, the attacks on the west coast went almost entirely unopposed. The raids ended only when King Torric called off his men to prepare for their march on the capital.
After the Ironborn return to Pyke with their hostages, King Torric begins to consolidate his rule and decides to force the Northerner's hand.An army of 5000 ironborn set sail south under the command of Gwynesse Harlaw, to begin the long journey around the entirety of Westeros to attack the Dreadfort and capture Harold Snow. The battle ended with a loss for the Ironborn, who retreated upon the death of their commander, Lady Harlaw. A detailed account of the battle can be found on it's dedicated page.
Harold Snow retreated to his chambers, sorely wounded but in possession of House Harlaw's ancestral sword - the valyrian steel weapon Nightfall. The levies he raised in the defense of the Dreadfort begin to disperse. A caravan containing the wealth of House Bolton, secreted out of the Dreadfort by Harold in an effort to send it to Dorne, begins to head down the Kingsroad.
The Ransom of Roose Bolton
Though not technically a battle, a brief skirmish occurred between the forces of House Dustin and the Ironborn just north of Barrowton, when an attempt was made to ransom Lord Roose Bolton, as was agreed to by the imprisoned Lord and King Torric. Instead of the ransom, however, the Northerners bring the head of the Ironborn messenger in a chest. The Ironborn are surprised, but before they can take action Lord Domeric Dustin drives his dagger into Rurik Greyjoy's eye, killing him. The Northerners attempt to take Lord Roose by force - before they can, however, he is slain, his throat cut to the bone.
The Northerners then fall upon the rest of the Ironborn party, slaughtering them to a man.
The death of Rurik Greyjoy greatly upsets King Torric, and reduces the number of male Greyjoys to three, one of which being Harren Greyjoy, who betrayed his brother Torric. The death of Roose Bolton leaves his brother, Lord Edderion Bolton, as both Lord of the North and the very last of his line.
Following King Torric's release of Edderion Bolton, most of the Ironborn attention turned south, toward their war for independence. The raids along the western shore ceased, and the longships of the Isles sailed elsewhere as Stark and Bolton battled for control of the North. When Lord Brandon emerged victorious, however, and began to march south, King Torric realized the need to draw the wolf back into his den. Half of the Iron Fleet set sail for the North under the command of Lucas Harlaw.
The Sack of Flint's Fingers
Without warning, the army of Lord Harlaw descened upon Flint's Fingers, one of the few lightly garrisoned strongholds left on the western shore. They took the castle, putting most of the men to the sword but still taking with them thralls and saltwives, along with anything of value. Lord Flint himself was to the south, but his wife and youngest three children remained. All four were slain, then tied to palisade posts to rot, wolf pelts nailed to their heads.
Lord Brandon Stark decides there can be no recourse but war against the Ironborn, though earlier he had thought to pursue a more moderate course. Yvaine Umber, one of the largest backers of peace and also a blood relative of the Flints, largely blames herself.
False Wolves, False Ravens
Spies in Winterfell manage to take hold of a raven, and send the following letter to Brandon Stark while he is on the march south:
Your men stand guard to stop me, but they have failed. Those at Torren's Square were too busy hiding behind their mothers skirts to see us march to Winterfell, and we have struck at the heart of the North.
Your Northmen were weak and unready. I have routed and slaughtered your army at Winterfell and have killed all those who reside in it. Like Theon Greyjoy of old Winterfell now sits in ash, but its walls still stand.
Come meet me False Wolf, I would love to add your skull to the mountain of those you have failed. Send your minions if you must, but they will only be slaughtered. The Drowned One has blessed our purpose.
Lucas Harlaw, Lord of Winterfell
— Lucas Harlaw, in Northern Forgery
In an effort to secure his independence and bolster the war effort, Iron King Torric Greyjoy eventually made common cause with Gerion Lannister, who proclaimed himself King of the Rock. Lucion Lannister, Gerion's son and heir, was set to be wed to Maryen Greyjoy, Torric's sister, thereby forming the Greyjoy-Lannister Alliance.