"Five hundred men just stood there and watched. All the great knights of the Seven Kingdoms. You think anyone said a word, lifted a finger? No, Lord Stark. Five hundred men and this room was silent as a crypt. Except for the screams, of course, and the Mad King laughing. And later... when I watched the Mad King die, I remembered him laughing as your father burned... it felt like justice."
The Execution of Rickard and Brandon Stark was the second of two events that led to the outbreak of Robert's Rebellion. Following the abduction of Lyanna Stark, Brandon Stark, then on his way to get married to Catelyn Tully, rode to King's Landing in a fury to demand Rhaegar show himself. He was imprisoned by King Aerys II, who then ordered Lord Rickard Stark to come to the capital to ransom him. He too was imprisoned, and when Rickard asked for a trial by combat, Aerys II chose "fire" as his champion. Lord Rickard was suspended above wildfire, while his son Brandon was placed in a strangle of rope, with a sword just out of reach: Brandon had to cut Rickard down to save him, but the more he struggled to reach it, the more he was strangled. In the end, Rickard was roasted alive and Brandon strangled. This proved the final straw in what ignited the rebellion.