Bonded Mounts AGAIN?!?!

Pathfinder provided an excellent alternative to the bulky and oft-forgotten bonded mount in the form of a divine weapon.  I was thinking "Why stop there?"  A bonded mount is awesome for a ranging game or, especially, a war game where a Paladin can lead a cavalry charge, but what might also help a Paladin in social situations, or combat?  I think moving the focus away from the traditional Paladin-as-Knight model, and into the Paladin-as-beacon-of-values model can help this.  Some options might be:

-Bonded Weapon:  A weapon that grows in power with the Paladin.  The mechanics from Pathfinder would provide a good base, but there are multiple ways a D&D Paladin could differ.

-Astral Allies:  As a Paladin grows in power, they would gain the notice and friendship (or fear) of various astral powers, which could mean they would answer a Paladin's summons for aid.

-Auras:  This has shown up a lot in video games of late, and it makes sense.  Add an option to increase the potency or abilities of a Paladin's aura as they grow.  Anyone who can see the Paladin gets the bonus.  These are an excellent, passive ability that still adds flavor to the character, especially if the players and DMs use it to describe a Paladin.  For example, a Warden may have a serene nature, whereas a Cavalier would project hope and protection, and a Blackguard would give off waves of fear.

-Beacon Powers:  A Paladin would manifest powers based on a chosen virtue they embody.  A Paladin with the virtue of Valor, for example, may be able to increase their damage when their hit points are low or when they're outnumbered, whereas a Paladin with the virtue of Malice may be able to cause increasing penalties through searing Necrotic damage.

Whatever the case, can we move Paladins away from relying so heavily on their horses to make them cool?  We might even be able to reinforce better Paladin role-playing through the system, and get away from the stigma of the Paladin as the Lawful-Good stick in the mud.