So, we are three episodes into season 2, not quite a third of the way through the season. So I guess this post is more like the first intermission at a hockey game, rather than a break between quarters of a football game.
Hit the jump for a brief synopsis of the happenings in Westeros from S2:E3 "Garden of Bones" (taken from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Garden_of_Bones )
At King's Landing
King Joffrey (Jack Gleeson) continues to grow more and more cruel; after hearing of Robb Stark's latest victory, he orders Ser Meryn (Ian Beattie) to deliver a public beating and shaming on Robb's sister, Sansa (Sophie Turner). Tyrion (Peter Dinklage) and Bronn (Jerome Flynn) arrive in time to defuse the situation; Bronn later suggests to Tyrion that sex may calm the boy king, and Tyrion arranges for the prostitutes Ros (Esmé Bianco) and Daisy (Maisie Dee) to service Joffrey. However, Joffrey instead forces Ros to sadistically beat Daisy to send a message to Tyrion. Later, Ser Lancel Lannister (Eugene Simon) visits Tyrion and informs him that Queen Cersei has ordered the release of Grand Maester Pycelle. Tyrion tells Lancel that he is aware of his affair with Cersei, but will keep the truth from Joffrey in exchange for spying on her.
In the Westerlands
Robb Stark (Richard Madden) wins another battle over the Lannister armies. Afterwards, he discusses the captured Lannister personnel with Lord Roose Bolton (Michael McElhatton). Bolton favours torturing and eliminating the prisoners for practical purposes, but Robb insists on their fair treatment and reminds that his sisters are still prisoner at King's Landing. Robb later meets a neutral field nurse, Talisa (Oona Chaplin), while aiding in a leg amputation on a Lannister soldier. Despite Robb's protests, Talisa holds him accountable for the carnage at the battle; her spirit and forthrightness leaves him impressed.
In the Stormlands
Petyr Baelish (Aidan Gillen) arrives in the Stormlands and meets with Renly Baratheon (Gethin Anthony), to discuss the siege of King's Landing. Later, he presses Margaery Tyrell (Natalie Dormer) about her marriage, and Renly's relationship with her brother, Loras (Finn Jones), but the potential queen rebuffs his questions. He next meets with Catelyn (Michelle Fairley), who flies into a rage at the sight of him. Littlefinger tells her that the Lannisters have both Sansa and Arya, and want to trade them for Ser Jaime. As a gesture of good will, he brings her Ned's remains. Later, Renly and Catelyn meet with Stannis (Stephen Dillane) and Melisandre (Carice van Houten). Stannis offers Renly the chance to surrender in exchange of becoming his heir, but Renly denies him, as he possesses the larger army.
At night, Stannis orders Davos (Liam Cunningham) to take Melisandre to shore, and to be sure they are not seen. Once ashore, Melisandre reveals she is, impossibly, in late-stage pregnancy, and gives birth to a horrific, shadowy figure, which disappears in a cloud of smoke.
Having been previously captured, Arya (Maisie Williams), Gendry (Joe Dempsie), and Hot Pie (Ben Hawkley) are brought to the ruined castle of Harrenhal, currently under occupation of the Lannister Army. The garrison there, under command of Gregor "The Mountain" Clegane (Ian Whyte), is brutally torturing and killing prisoners daily. Gendry is eventually selected to be tortured next, but before he can be harmed, Lord Tywin Lannister (Charles Dance) arrives, ending the debauchery and ordering the prisoners be put to work. When Polliver (Andy Kellegher) catches Arya staring at her sword, Needle, he threatens her but she is spared by Tywin, who recognizes that she is a girl and makes her his cupbearer.
Across the Narrow Sea
Daenerys (Emilia Clarke) receives word from Kovarro (Steven Cole) that the city of Qarth is nearby, and they are willing to welcome the "Mother of Dragons". Ser Jorah Mormont (Iain Glen) cautions that Qarth is located in the "Garden of Bones", a brutal desert of which those who've been turned away by Qarth have perished in. When Danaerys' "horde" arrives in Qarth, they are met by the Thirteen, the leaders of the city. One of the Thirteen, a spice merchant, speaks for the group and bargains to see Danaerys' dragons in exchange for food and rest inside Qarth. Danaerys refuses and demands her people are attended to first, and the Thirteen decide to turn Danaerys' group away and abandon them to the Garden of Bones. Danaerys swears vengeance on Qarth should they not comply, and one of the Thirteen, Xaro Xhoan Daxos (Nonso Anozie), breaks with the group and vouches for the behaviour of Danaerys' people through a blood oath, after which they are allowed to enter the city.