Littlefinger sighed. "I fear I did forget, my lord. Pray forgive me. For a moment I did not remember that I was talking to a Stark." His mouth quirked. "So it will be Stannis, and war?"
It is not a choice. Stannis is the heir.
Far be it from me to dispute the Lord Protector. What would you have of me, then? Not my wisdom, for a certainty.
I shall do my best to forget your ... wisdom, Ned said with distaste. "I called you here to ask for the help you promised Catelyn. This is a perilous hour for all of us. Robert has named me Protector, true enough, but in the eyes of the world, Joffrey is still his son and heir. The queen has a dozen knights and a hundred men-at-arms who will do whatever she commands ... enough to overwhelm what remains of my own household guard. And for all I know, her brother Jaime may be riding for King's Landing even as we speak, with a Lannister host at his back."
And you without an army. Littlefinger toyed with the dagger on the table, turning it slowly with a finger. "There is small love lost between Lord Renly and the Lannisters. Bronze Yohn Royce, Sir Balon Swann, Sir Loras, Lady Tanda, the Redwyne twins ... each of them has a retinue of knights and sworn swords here at court."