Jaime Lannister is the younger twin brother of Cersei and is the first son of Tywin Lannister. He serves as the third-person narrator of seventeen chapters throughout A Storm of Swords, A Feast for Crows, and A Dance with Dragons. Like Cersei, he is arrogant, amoral, and impulsive, although unlike the rest of his family, he has no desire for power. He is inseparable from Cersei, and the pair have maintained an incestuous relationship since they were young. He treats his dwarf brother Tyrion with respect and kindness, though Cersei and Tywin do not. An immensely skilled warrior, he was knighted at a young age and has little interest in anything other than battle. To be close to Cersei, he renounced his claim to Casterly Rock and became the youngest knight to ever join the Kingsguard, a group of knights sworn to protect the King. However, he was raised to the position because King Aerys II Targaryen wanted to rob Tywin of his heir. In protest, Tywin resigned his position as Hand of the King and took Cersei from King’s Landing, leaving Jaime alone at court, guarding a king who was becoming ever more mad and cruel. Jaime became disenchanted with his position as he was forced to watch the cruelties of Aerys in silence. When the King planned to burn the city instead of surrendering to rebels, Jaime murdered both the king and the agent sent to arrange the act. Despite the fact Jamie killed a dangerous and insane king, as well as saved the capital from being burnt to the ground, it gave him a reputation as an evil and dishonorable man, who violated Westeros ‘s most sacred taboo. By A Game of Thrones, he and Cersei have three children, though the children believe that King Robert Baratheon is their father. Jaime cares little for his children. He accompanies King Robert Baratheon and Cersei to Winterfell. Bran Stark discovers Jaime and Cersei having sex, and Jaime throws the boy out a window to keep the relationship secret. When Tyrion is captured by Catelyn Stark, Jaime breaks Kingsguard conduct and attacks Catelyn’s husband Eddard Stark to retaliate. He then leaves King’s Landing and joins his father, who is marching against Catelyn’s home in the Riverlands. He is given command of half of Tywin’s army. He is eventually captured by Robb Stark. Despite his capture, Cersei names him Lord Commander of the Kingsguard after Barristan Selmy is dismissed.
At the end of A Clash of Kings, Catelyn releases Jaime after he swears to return her daughters to her and to never take arms against the Starks or Tullys again. He and Brienne of Tarth journey to King’s Landing, but they are captured by Stark bannermen. Jaime’s right hand is cut off in an attempt to drive a wedge between Roose Bolton and Tywin. Without his hand, Jaime can no longer fight. He falls into a depression and loses the will to live. With Brienne’s help, he realizes that he can still live for his family and for revenge. He agrees to not blame Roose for the loss of his hand and is released, without Brienne. However, he returns to rescue her, and they return safely to King’s Landing. Jaime is changed by his experience and decides to become a just and honorable man. His actions upon his return cause Jaime to become alienated from his immediate family; Jaime refuses to resign from the Kingsguard and argues with his father, whose gift of a sword is taken as an insult. Jaime gives the blade, which he names Oathkeeper, to Brienne and orders her to keep Sansa Stark safe. When Tyrion is accused for the murder of Joffrey Baratheon, Jaime and Cersei’s son, Jaime refuses to believe the claims and helps Tyrion escape. He confesses that Tyrion’s first wife was not a prostitute as Jaime told him, but she truly loved Tyrion. In response, Tyrion tells Jaime that he killed Joffrey, a lie, and reveals that Cersei has been unfaithful. Tyrion then goes to kill their father Tywin. In A Feast for Crows, he is furious at Tyrion for killing their father, and feels partially responsible himself, and believes that Tyrion lied about Cersei. Twice, Cersei asks him to become Hand of the King. He refuses both times, and Cersei angrily ends their relationship. He goes to lift the siege on Riverrun, punishing Lannister bannermen for atrocities on the journey and growing fond of dispensing true justice. He begins sparring with Ilyn Payne to learn how to fight with his left hand, but progress has been slow. He learns from his cousin Lancel that Cersei has taken other lovers and becomes upset as he has been faithful to her. Jaime successfully defeats the Tully forces without taking up arms, in keeping with his oath to Catelyn. When Cersei is imprisoned for adultery and high treason, she begs Jaime to return to Kings Landing, stating that she loves him. He burns the letter and abandons her to her fate. In A Dance with Dragons, he is approached by Brienne. She tells him that Sansa is being held captive by Sandor Clegane, a lie, and claims that Sansa will die unless he comes alone. Jaime leaves with Brienne, and his fate is unknown. Jaime Lannister is portrayed by Nikolaj Coster-Waldau in the HBO adaptation of the books.