Lyanna<3Rhaegar

Why did The Hound stop The Mountain from killing Loras?

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It all happened so fast. The Knight of Flowers was shouting for his own sword as SerGregor knocked his squire aside and made a grab for the reins of his horse. The marescented blood and reared. Loras Tyrell kept his seat, but barely. Ser Gregor swunghis sword, a savage two-handed blow that took the boy in the chest and knocked himfrom the saddle. The courser dashed away in panic as Ser Loras lay stunned in thedirt. But as Gregor lifted his sword for the killing blow, a rasping voice warned,
         “Leave him be,” and a steel-clad hand wrenched him away from the boy.
      
      
      The Mountain pivoted in wordless fury, swinging his longsword in a killing arc withall his massive strength behind it, but the Hound caught the blow and turned it, and for what seemed an eternity the two brothers stood hammering at each other asa dazed Loras Tyrell was helped to safety. Thrice Ned saw Ser Gregor aim savage blowsat the hound’s-head helmet, yet not once did Sandor send a cut at his brother’s unprotectedface.

Why did Sandor do this? I wouldn't think he has any fondness for Loras & he clearly wasn't looking to kill his brother so why? 

The only explanation I can come up with is that he didn't want Gregor to face the consequences of killing Loras - but again why? There no love between them. 

Just wondered if anyone else had any plausible reason he would react this way? 

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Maybe for the same reason Dunk protected Tanselle. 

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Strangely I think the show actually sheds light on this. Or that's where I take my understanding from. Sandor wants to be the one to kill Gregor. So he doesn't want Gregor punished for murdering Loras which would surely be a death sentence. 

Or it could just be that the Hound can't resist being chivalrous and knightly even though he doesn't believe in being a knight.

Or it could be that he doesn't want to see his brother hurt someone else the way he hurt him. 

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I think this was a view into both what kind of man Sandor really is, and also into Ned's ability to see that he is very different from his brother.

Sandor may have been gruff and mean and even threatened to kill Sansa in the previous chapter, but here he is, reacting instinctively the way one of Sansa's True Knights would: Loras, in the present circumstances, is as defenseless as any damsel in distress, and while everyone else is probably staring in horror, Sandor jumps in immediately to protect him. I'm sure it didn't hurt that he hates Gregor and would be happy enough to thwart him, and also he's probably the only one there who isn't terrified of him (anymore) on general principle, but the main thing is that the weak needed protecting, and there he was (Loras may be a brilliant fighter, but caught off guard in a situation he clearly did not expect to escalate the way it did, he was The Weak in that situation). 

As far as him never aiming for Gregor's head, I think that was a lot more to do with Sandor being unwilling to take unfair advantage (which is also something you would attribute to chivalric codes) than not wanting to kill his brother. It's a point made repeatedly about Sandor as the story continues that he basically only engages in fair fights*. Gregor had no helm and he did, so Sandor would not swing at his head. This was also hardly the time or place for a duel to the death, which clearly does not concern Gregor a bit, who doesn't even respond to Robert's command for them to stop.

And we see Ned recognizing that the two Cleganes are very different sorts of men in their reactions to Loras and each other. I think what we learn there about Ned is probably as important as what we learn about Sandor.

Edited by Therae
*on his own time. Mycah was not on his own time.

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I believe Sandor didn't want to see his brother harm Loras or anyone else unjustly. Or maybe it brought back unpleasant memories. Which is why he intervened.

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Sandor does not give a rat's ass about Loras.  Since he's pretty perceptive, he probably saw that Loras was cheating with the mare in heat (that's just an educated guess since he called it correctly on Gregor vs. Ser Hugh).  He would be exactly the kind of knight that Sandor would disdain.  It has everything to do with his conversation with Sansa the night before when he spilled the secret of his burns.  Her response that Gregor "was no true knight" was not only compassionate, but it was probably the first time anyone took Sandor's side and acknowledged his brother is a pile of garbage and the system was wrong to reward him with knighthood.  All that in one simple sentence and it shouldn't be understated how that would have affected him.  As the story goes on, we realize that Sandor's hatred of knights stems from his childhood idealism being crushed not so much by Gregor, but by his father and the system that not only protected Gregor but rewarded him and continues to do so.  Gregor has already had three wives and the family home and lands.     

So it doesn't matter that he doesn't care about Loras or that Loras cheated.  Gregor is still wrong to kill his horse and attempt to murder Loras.  What is amazing is that this is the perfect opportunity to kill his brother.  No one would call it kinslaying if Gregor was obviously out of control and going to kill Loras.  Sandor would get his revenge and it would be completely justified.  He doesn't do that though.  Gregor is without a helm so the holding back from a fatal head blow shows restraint and a sense of honor.  It's a big deal, since we know how powerful his desire for revenge is if he can at least temporarily set that aside.  It's through Ned's eyes (as in the Father's judgement) that we witness this and we know how honor resonates with Ned.  It's also no coincidence that the night before Sansa is wearing a green dress and the next day he appears wearing an "olive- green cloak."  Olive branches being symbolic of peace is pretty appropriate since Sandor restores peace from Gregor's violence.         

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Sandor is only man who have potential to beat Mountain. If he doesn't Robert will ask why.

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Ned heard applause, cheers, whistles, shocked gasps, excited muttering, and over it all the rasping, raucous laughter of the Hound. The Knight of Flowers reined up at the end of the lists. His lance was not even broken

He found it funny as did LF interestingly enough

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Sandor was being ridiculously gallant here, and taking stupid, dangerous risks to do it. I think in a way, he's mocking the greatest knights of the kingdom (and Sansa), by showing the world that he can be braver, more skilled and above all, more gallant than any of them - and he's not even a knight.

Edited by Springwatch

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1 hour ago, ChuckPunch said:

I bet Sandor just wanted a crack at his brother.

That too. 

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It's the irony of the "true" anointed knights acting like a-holes, while Sandor not-a-knight was actually the only one being chivalrous and knightly. 

Another example of words are Wind because it is the deeds that make the man. 

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Sandor / The Hound is the night:

The Hound "seemed to take form out of the night" and he was "a voice from the night, a shadow." (AGoT, Sansa II)

Ser Loras is the sun (Loras = solar) and a Garth Greenhand representative, I suspect. Maybe more the earth than the sun? With his love of the green-armored Renly and his flower sigil, the earth might be a better match.

Everyone already saw Ser Gregor kill Ser Hugh of the Vale. @sweetsunray long ago recognized and outlined the symbolism of this, predicting that a landslide or earthquake will destroy the Gates of the Moon below the Eyrie. The fool Moonboy appears in the story soon - on the same day - after Ser Hugh dies. 

So maybe the night (yes, it is literary irony that he is The Night but not a knight) may be upset that his brother killed the moon and now wants to prevent the death of the sun (or the earth). 

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I believe Sandor is a good guy. Much better than the average anyway. But he has to do awful things in the service of Joffrey or Tywin. Here he had the opportunity of a good action, of alleviating his conscience. At the expense of his hated brother. So why he did it IMO.

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Why did Sandor come to Loras’ aid?  The Hound surely loathes his brother and Loras won by trickery but Loras unhorsed Gregor in a joust during a tourney. That is the point of the joust.

Eddard told Sansa the jousters were using tourney lances that splinter upon impact so no one is hurt. In the below Eddard quote it appears that Sandor finds it humorous that the Mountain was unhorsed by Loras.

A Game of Thrones - Eddard VII       Ned heard applause, cheers, whistles, shocked gasps, excited muttering, and over it all the rasping, raucous laughter of the Hound. <snip>    Ser Gregor Clegane disentangled himself and came boiling to his feet. He wrenched off his helm and slammed it down onto the ground. His face was dark with fury and his hair fell down into his eyes. "My sword," he shouted to his squire

 

My thought is that Sandor stepped in to assist Loras because a tourney joust is not a killing field.

Like him or not, he doesn’t sugar coat stuff.

A Game of Thrones - Sansa II      That boy today, his second joust, oh, that was a pretty bit of business. You saw that, did you? Fool boy, he had no business riding in this company. No money, no squire, no one to help him with that armor. That gorget wasn't fastened proper. You think Gregor didn't notice that? You think Ser Gregor's lance rode up by chance, do you? Pretty little talking girl, you believe that, you're empty-headed as a bird for true. Gregor's lance goes where Gregor wants it to go.

 

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I think we've pretty much covered it. Sandor was close enough to the action, and able to respond with his usual amazing speed while everyone else was standing around with their c**ks in their hands. He'd seen his brother kill one innocent the previous day, and as noted, it rankled; he wasn't about to let it happen again. Remember, Loras was knocked down and struggling to rise, he was unarmed, whereas Gregor towered over him with his horse-bloodied greatsword. Also, Sandor had been training hard since the Hand's Tourney was announced, in the hopes of taking on Gregor, and maybe getting a chance to kill him.

But the, why didn't Sandor kill Gregor? He didn't need to, in order to prove he could beat Gregor any time he wanted, matching every blow, parrying every sword strike, not going for the obvious target, Gregor's head. Sandor may actually have gotten around to killing his brother, had the fight gone on long enough. But as it was, he humiliated Gregor in front of much of King's Landing, the court, and the lords, ladies, and knights from ALL OVER WESTEROS. A pretty piece of work.

That Loras also gave him the winner's purse and honors, and the crowd gave him their adulation, was more than Sandor would have ever expected.

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32 minutes ago, zandru said:

I think we've pretty much covered it. Sandor was close enough to the action, and able to respond with his usual amazing speed while everyone else was standing around with their c**ks in their hands. He'd seen his brother kill one innocent the previous day, and as noted, it rankled; he wasn't about to let it happen again. Remember, Loras was knocked down and struggling to rise, he was unarmed, whereas Gregor towered over him with his horse-bloodied greatsword. Also, Sandor had been training hard since the Hand's Tourney was announced, in the hopes of taking on Gregor, and maybe getting a chance to kill him.

But the, why didn't Sandor kill Gregor? He didn't need to, in order to prove he could beat Gregor any time he wanted, matching every blow, parrying every sword strike, not going for the obvious target, Gregor's head. Sandor may actually have gotten around to killing his brother, had the fight gone on long enough. But as it was, he humiliated Gregor in front of much of King's Landing, the court, and the lords, ladies, and knights from ALL OVER WESTEROS. A pretty piece of work.

That Loras also gave him the winner's purse and honors, and the crowd gave him their adulation, was more than Sandor would have ever expected.

No man is so accursed as the kinslayer. 

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19 hours ago, Blue-Eyed Wolf said:

What is amazing is that this is the perfect opportunity to kill his brother.  No one would call it kinslaying if Gregor was obviously out of control and going to kill Loras.  Sandor would get his revenge and it would be completely justified. 

Yes. And the fact that he could get away with it, but he'd still know it was wrong—for Sandor, that's exactly why he shouldn't do it. He doesn't want the public to see him as better than he sees himself. That's why he isn't a knight in the first place.

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23 minutes ago, Lost Melnibonean said:

No man is so accursed as the kinslayer. 

Yes, I have thought of this. For the fan base that would mean Sandor has some sort of moral, ethical, spiritual code,

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20 minutes ago, falcotron said:

but he'd still know it was wrong—

yep

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