We finally learn the significance of the antler-in-wolf from the first Bran chapter: the stag is the symbol of the King's house. Ruh roh, scary foreshadowing detected. In this chapter, Bob Baratheon finally arrives. He has let himself go a bit, and I don't blame him. If I had just won a kingdom I'd take it easy too. We learn a bit more about geography: Eddard's lands are huge, scarcely populated, and largely inhospitable. King Bob raves about the south, where it's girls gone wild fat drunk party 24/7 and there's a distinct lack of executions, frostbite, and undead ghosts.
Bob makes a beeline for Winterfell's #1 attraction: the crypts, where the love of his life is buried. Lyanna must have been smoking hot, because Bob won a kingdom for her and still pays his respects after nine long years. If only she was alive! Bob should just get one of those Others to "Waymar" her, problem solved. Robert ends up offering Ned the Vice King position, sealed by marriage between their kids. The last time Stark and Baratheon got married, the guy in power was overthrown, so maybe he should reconsider.
Despite the antler-in-wolf sign and the dead ancestor foreboding, I assume Ned accepts the position, because if he doesn't, the plot stops and the book ends. 700 pages left means the Starks are going south. Warm weather and naked chicks here we come! Wooo spring break!
The next chapter opens with Jon Snow drinking away his problems. Predictably, the bastard does not like the pretentious royal Lannister kids. We learn that his direwolf Ghost is awesome, and that Jon wants to join the Night's Watch. Uncle Benjen tells him that with great power comes great responsibility -- the responsibility of not having sex, not owning lands, and fighting supernatural monsters. But Jon doesn't want to father bastards, and emo rages his way out of the hall.
Outside, he meets Lannister dwarf and Cirque du Soleil acrobat Tyrion, who makes some witty quips and gives him advice. Hopefully he gets Jon to stop taking his heredity so seriously, because nobody likes whiners. It's cool that Martin isn't making the Lannisters out to be wholly evil. I actually really like Tyrion -- his line about Jon's mother being "some woman, no doubt" was great.