Game of Thrones RQ
Lord Petyr Baelish, Littlefinger
Master of the Coin
Lord Petyr Baelish acquired the nickname “Littlefinger” while fostered at Riverrun, due to his slight stature and the fact that his family holdings are located on the littlest of the Fingers—the name has stuck with him ever since. Other men might have been hampered by such an ignoble title, but instead, Lord Baelish has risen to the position of the king’s master of coin, and an influential place on the small council, and he aims to rise higher still.
Littlefinger is a short fellow with handsome features, and sports a well-manicured goatee, grey threads running throughout his dark hair. Other than his small stature, he’s of average build, a bit pale but certainly healthy. He favors dark clothing that is stylish, expensive, and functional. He is just shy of thirty years old.
Even as a boy, Petyr Baelish never minded his place and was always bold. He has a mocking, even taunting, way about him, even as he exerts a boyish charm that makes people want to like him. The only thing that eclipses his audacity is his ambition, for Littlefinger craves power, status, and accomplishment. He is confident and surprisingly likeable, considering his Machiavellian attitude. Unflappable and fearless, even in the face of men who are his physical superior, Littlefinger is always the one in control and never lets situations get out of hand.
The man who became one of the most powerful and influential lords in the Seven Kingdoms was not born to greatness. The Baelishes are barely a step up from hedge knights and have no banners, no armies, and no great strongholds; they have poor holdings and equally poor prospects for great marriages and alliances. As a result, Petyr Baelish yearned for a life greater than the one his forbearers left him. His grandfather was a Braavosi mercenary in service to Lord Corbray, given land on the smallest of The Fingers as a reward for his service. When Petyr’s father became a hedge knight, he took the head of the Titan of Braavos as his sigil. At some point during his youth, Petyr choose a field of mockingbirds as his personal sigil, leaving behind the Titan his father had chosen. When Petyr fostered at Riverrun he became fast friends with Catelyn and Lysa Stark, and was their constant companion. As they grew older, however, Petyr fell deeply in love with Catelyn. She, on the other hand, while fond of the lovesick young man, did not share his feelings, and Catelyn also knew her role in life. The Baelish family was too small, too insignificant for her father to ever wed her to one such as Petyr Baelish, a fact driven home when Lord Hoster Tully arranged for Catelyn to marry Brandon Stark, the heir to Winterfell.
Lysa Tully, unlike her sister, fell madly in love with Petyr, somehow overlooking his infatuation with Catelyn. Her obsession with the young man rivaled Petyr’s own with Catelyn, and so when Petyr was drunk with melancholy after Catelyn’s rejection, Lysa crept into his bedchamber and bedded him. Petyr’s ill-advised challenge against Brandon Stark for Catelyn’s hand—a fight that saw him wounded and confined to his quarters for two weeks—and the tryst with Lysa eventually led Hoster Tully to send the young man back to the Fingers and wash his hands of him. Such a setback might have destroyed a lesser man, but Petyr proved resilient as always. Perhaps it was the harsh reality of his situation, the rejection of the one woman he loved, that drove Littlefinger to rise above his lowly birthright and become something greater, to prove to the world he was more than some sheep lord and not a man to be trifled with. Petyr maintained a relationship with Lysa Tully even after her marriage to Jon Arryn, and through her, Littlefinger managed the customs at Gulltown, where he proved skilled in commerce and coin. Jon Arryn quickly saw his worth, and steadily offered Petyr greater appointments until he finally landed himself the office of master of coin on the king’s small council. Under Petyr’s guidance, the incomes of the crown increased considerably but so, too, did the crown’s debts. Petyr’s ability to seemingly create coin from thin air when the crown needs it has made him a trusted and indispensable retainer of King Robert.
Petyr Baelish hasn’t sat idle as the master of coin, either. He’s spent a great deal of money to buy the right people in the right places and positioned himself at the head of large, non-associated group of people from all of the social strata in the Seven Kingdoms. His network rivals even that of another member of the small council, the eunuch and master of whispers, Varys. Petyr has also invested a great deal of money in buying up most of the brothels in King’s Landing to keep him even more aware of what the noble lords and ladies of King’s Landing are up to.