May 30 2013 1:00pm

Spoiler Thread for A Read of Ice and Fire, Part 3!

Welcome to Part 3 of the Song of Ice and Fire thread, in conjunction with Leigh Butler’s fabulous Read of Ice and Fire. (The first and second threads, now massive, can be found here and here.) Please join us below for our ongoing, spoiler-filled dissection of George R. R. Martin’s bloody fantasy epic.

(Please note that while the forums are closed for comments, you can still access them here if you’d like to read up on previous conversations in the the thread.)

Spoilers for the entire series ahead, naturally.

Zorila Desufnoc Eht
1. AlirozTheConfused
And herein we start the next thread,

now that the older one is dead

in this thread, fear no recompense,

and let the spoiler talk commence!

Anyone know where Leigh

posted her big, sparkly YAY

I need to know, right away.
Julian Niquille
2. Gesar
"and Arya hears a wolf howl; she feels its rage and grief."

I don't mean to insist on this too much, but actually I do mean to insist on this too much, because that's how I am: if Leigh's rewriting of the event is accurate, then that's the exact event of the Ghost of High Heart prophecy: the male wolf howling is Grey Wind, and Arya is "no one" hearing it.
Scott Silver
3. hihosilver28
Telling her that Roose was the final killer is alright, wouldn't it? She just read of Jaime telling Roose to give Robb his regards...I think this qualifies as not a spoiler, but please everyone feel free to chime in.
Chris Nelly
4. Aeryl
I never got that it was Roose, Cat OBVIOUSLY knows who he is, she pointed out they were sitting together, why wouldn't she recognize him as the man who killed her son.
George Jong
5. IndependentGeorge
Just a continuance from the last thread:
No, but he could damn sure see what he was doing as Master of Coin, indebting the crown to cause a destabilization, and if he didn't see that, that's a dereliction of duty IMO, he's was the Hand, overseeing what the council did was his job, and that means accountants get auditted(I should know).
The thing is, though, the debt wasn't destabilizing in and of itself. He wasn't borrowing money and then using it to cover Robert's partying; he was reinvesting it. I think he was using a combination of rate arbitrage (which he controled himself) and leveraged investments. It wasn't an illusion - the revenues he generated were real, and actually worked out well in a time of peace.

It was the equivalent of a third-world country with an official fixed exchange rate, which he would manipulate to profit from its spread with the black market rate. Since he controls both who gets access to foreign exchanges, and the official rate of the exchange, he extort bribes from people for accept an already usurous exchange.

In this case, instead of exchange rates, the Master of Coin already decides which merchants get trade charters, etc. That means they not only get to decide who makes money trading in King's Landing (the largest port in Westeros), but also how much, and who their competitors are. Being privvy to that information makes lending money to individual merchants a much lower risk than if they were borrowing from, say, the Iron Bank.

So what Littlefinger does then is borrow from the Iron bank at 1%, then lend it out to a merchant at 5%. The merchant, in turn, has to kick back a percentage to Littlefinger in exchange for a trade monopoly, and another percentage to look the other way at Customs. The Iron Bank avoids the risk of betting on which merchant to back, and gets a small return. The Crown gets both the 4% spread by lending, as well as any taxes and fees from the trade, while Littlefinger gets his own cut on top of that.

The extent of the corruption is not obvious to anyone not looking specifically for it, and the books are actually balanced on paper. It's actually rather clever, and the reason a King Stannis would be so dangerous to him. Davos, smuggler extraordinaire, would see through the corruption immediately, and Stannis would seek to clean it up instead of trying to cut himself in on the profits.

I was actually rather disappointed that the show skipped all of that in exchange for the much simpler "Littlefinger is borrowing it all!" explanation in the show.
6. Ephidel
@4 I think its to show her complete disbelief and onsetting madness.

I wonder if Leigh will remember her comments about the completly illogical end to Cat's plotline when we get to the end of ASOS and learn its not actually the end of Cat's plotline.
Chris Nelly
7. Aeryl
Sure, but still doesn't change the fact that SOMEONE who knew what they were looking at(like Davos as you point out) would have figured it out. Arryn's job as Hand was to do that, or find someone who could. Checks and balances and all that.
Chris Nelly
8. Aeryl
@6, I don't know if I buy that. She sure as hell knew who Jinglebell was, and she's known Bolton a lot longer. I just figured it was someone from Bolton's house, but not Bolton himself.
Scott Silver
9. hihosilver28
Aeryl, then why the heck would he say "Jaime Lannister sends his regards"? I always thought it was just Martin jerking our chain a bit. And one of his sections of poor choices in writing. That along with EVERY DAMN fake-out regarding Arya.
Chris Nelly
10. Aeryl
Because he was a Bolton man standing there when Jaime said it to Roose.

It could very well be that, and just bad writing to ignore that Cat knows very well who Roose Bolton is.
George Jong
11. IndependentGeorge
@8 - but isn't Roose Bolton described as being especially nondescript in appearance? At this point in the story, Catelyn is stressed and terrified and in tears. It's very easy to imagine her not quite making the connection at that moment, especially if he's armored and wearing a helmet.
Chris Nelly
12. Aeryl
I don't know, I recognize people by more than facial features(stance and stride, for example), so I guess I just can't get it. I'm more willing to ascribe it to GRRM's desire to make unambiguous things ambiguous, than I am willing to accept that Cat just forgot who the second most powerful man in the North was, especially since knowing all those things about the Northern families is a big part of that "Family, Duty" thing she's always on about.
Beth Meacham
13. bam
I always assumed she didn't recognize Roose Bolton because he was wearing his helmet, and had his back turned to her.
Scott Silver
14. hihosilver28
I'm more willing to ascribe it to GRRM's desire to make unambiguous things ambiguous, than I am willing to accept that Cat just forgot who the second most powerful man in the North was, especially since knowing all those things about the Northern families is a big part of that "Family, Duty" thing she's always on about.
I'm more inclined to believe it was a choice on Martin's part as well, but there's enough evidence that "Cat has left the building" too. She thinks that Ned is still alive at the end, so for her to not recognize Roose is loosely supported in the text, I feel.
Chris Nelly
15. Aeryl
See I didn't read that line as her believing Ned was alive, either. More of speaking to Ned because she knows, deep down, she's about to "see" him in the afterlife, and if they cut her hair, she won't have that thing he loved about her.

Just some massively different interpretations of the text.
Scott Silver
16. hihosilver28
Hmm, very valid way of reading it. Never thought of it like that. I saw her as losing hold on reality because of the clawing of her eyes and cheeks and not recognizing what she was doing.

I wanted to reply to one of your comments in the other thread, but couldn't because of spoilers, so here it is here.

I don't accept that there is any "contract" between authors and readers. Authors write for the own gratification, NOT for your enjoyment, and readers forget that at their peril. I could only accept that. if the story was damaged by this act. And as I point out above, if anything, the story has been enhanced by this act, not damaged. Is it painful? Yes. Does it hurt? Yes. That means the story is working. Has the author essentially closed off all the "easy" paths to telling this story? Yes. That means a better story.

I really have a very strong disconnect with any of the Dorne plot arcs in the later books. I trace all of that back to Martin's decision to kill Oberyn. In the moment, I absolutely feel it was the right choice. But he took my introduction viewpoint into Dornish society and then killed it off. Then when he created a second introduction viewpoint, I just didn't care. And, for me, I just haven't been invested in any of the Dorne storylines. Which makes all of Quentyn's arc...and his death, pointless to me. I do like Arianne & Doran, but that's still more marginal than anything else.
Chris Nelly
17. Aeryl
I guess it's just personal preference, because I was very interested in learning more about the Sand Snakes after Oberyn's death.
George Jong
18. IndependentGeorge
I'm putting this in the spoiler thread because it's probably too raw for Leigh, and some of my points may not have been revealed yet.

What makes the Red Wedding especially painful for me is that, looking back, I can't help but conclude that Robb deserved to die. The tragedy is that Cat, and all his bannermen, died with him, for a cause that Robb himself betrayed when he married Jeyne.

Walder Frey was more than just jilted - he was putting his own life and the future of his House at risk by joining in open rebellion against the Crown. Hoster Tully did exactly the same thing during Robert's rebellion - his price for joining was for catelyn and Lysa to be married into House stark and House Tully. The only difference there is that Hoster wisely demanded payment up front.

Robb didn't put his honor above his family's honor; he put Jeyne's honor above the lives of the thousands who supported him. If Walder Frey had just decided to hole up inside the Twins and refuse passage to the Northmen, the war was over; Robb already admitted that. So when Robb reneged on his word and married Jeyne, he essentially said his wife was more important than the many thousands who had already bled and died for his sake. He shirked his duty in the name of Twu Wuv, and he paid for it.
Chris Nelly
19. Aeryl
Not even "Twu Wuv". He and Jeyne barely knew one another.
Scott Silver
20. hihosilver28
Aeryl- Me too. Which is why it has upset me that we've learned nothing of them over the next two books. They're imprisoned, and then none of them are a POV or really have anything to do with the plot. I always felt like Martin wanted me to care about Dorne without really giving me a reason to do so. Quentyn is living (well...dead) proof of that. We spent all that time with him, and he didn't make a lick of difference to the arc of the story.
David Goodhart
21. Davyd

I totes agree that Rob had it coming. When the Jeyne Thing was first introduced, I knew he was toast. It was, as you say, more than a jilting. It was an all-in gamble, and he lost.

Cat's death, tragic as it is, also didn't surprise me, much. I don't know that she could have survived Rob dying. Even with Sansa and Arya 'alive', she considers them lost to her. So, I think GRRM's cruelty goes even farther by bringing her back.

And come on guys, that was Totes Roose Bolton who offed Rob. Who thinks he would have let his cronies do it? Their sigil is a flayed man. They get off on this kind of shit.

Re: Arya- I always saw this as the fullfillment of the 'no one' prophesy too. Not my first time through, but on re-reads, everytime we got to that prophesy, Arya totally made sense.
Colleen Palmer
22. arianrose
Aeryl, I wanted to clarify a bit over here that I think the RW specifically inhibited my ability actually give a damn about Quentyn or the "cliffhanger" ending with Jon. I thought "huh, cliffhanger ending with Jon. *shrug*"

I know some people don't react this way, and I know some people don't get it. But apparently I am one of those people who emotionally shuts down after enough loss.
George Jong
23. IndependentGeorge
@22 - For me, the "cliff-too-far" was Bran & Rickon in COK. When Jon had his vision of Bran in the tombs, I totally believed he was dead. After they were revealed to be alive, I became much more skeptical, and correctly called every fake death since then (including, I would assume, Jon & Stannis).
Scott Silver
24. hihosilver28
When did Stannis fake-die? He's just in the woods on the way to Winterfell. He never had a fake death.
26. zambi76
Catelyn dead ... well kinda.
Arya dead ... or not.
Davos dead ... or not.
Gregor dead ... or ugh.
Brienne dead ... or not.
Loras wounded/dead ... or not (yeah, yeah, nobody cares but me here).
Stannis dead ... or not.
Jon dead ... or not.

So yes, GRRM is really overdoing it now.

And I understand getting jaded. Some evil part of me still hopes, that when Harry meets Sally, I mean Tyrion meets Dany, he promptly insults her in his usual witty way and she just as promptly incinerates him. But with our luck he would come back as a phoenix or something.
27. zambi76
@24,25: Stannis fake dies in Ramsay's letter.
Scott Silver
28. hihosilver28
@27-Ah, forgot that. Mainly because Martin gave no timeframe for the letter. (i.e. if it was before Stannis could have even got there, or if it was actually truthful and we just haven't seen it yet) Grr, there's sometimes Martin really angers me with his writing style.

@26- You forgot to add
Sandor dead...or not

Talk about Martin crying wolf. Him ending the Jon chapter still pisses me off. No one believes his stupid cliffhangers anymore.
George Jong
29. IndependentGeorge
#24 - Ramsay's letter to Jon. I am assuming it's either faulty intelligence, or a ruse.

Anyway, we're oficially in ASOS's home stretch, where a metric buttload of big events happens in rapid succession. Assuming there's no post on July 4, we're getting a major event/reveal almost every week from here on out:

JUN 13: "You know nothing, Jon Snow." (Chapter 55, "Jon")
JUN 20: "The crow calls the raven black, and you speak of betrayal." (Chapter 57, "Daenerys")
JUN 27: "It's, kof, the pie, noth-kof, pie." (Chapter 60, "Sansa")
JUL 11: "You are safe with me, and sailing home." (Chapter 61, "Sansa")
JUL 18: "The wall is yours, Jon Snow." (Chapter 64, "Jon")
JUL 25: "Not as your judge. As your champion." (Ch 66, "Tyrion")
AUG 8: "EEEEELLLLLIIIIIAAAAA!" (Chapter 70, "Tyrion")
AUG 15: "One day, you must tell me all. The good and the bad." (Chapter 71, "Daenerys")
AUG 22: "Is there gold hidden in the village?" (Chapter 74, "Arya")
AUG 29: "When the cold winds rise, we shall live or die together. It is time we made alliance against our common foe." (Chapter 76, "Jon")
SEP 5: "Wherever whores go." (Chapter 77, "Tyrion")
SEP 12: "Only Cat." (Chapter 80, "Sansa")
SEP 12: "I only drank some wine... you have no witness." (Epilogue)
30. Ephidel
I'm convinced Stannis faked his death as part of a ploy to beat the Boltons. So atleast this time the fake death is in universe.
Chris Nelly
31. Aeryl
Sorry I jumped the gun on the Rainbow thing. After today, that's the LB reaction I am looking forward to the most, when it finally hits her about Renly. I forgot all about his guard being called Rainbow, and thought it was a more direct shout out.
Scott Silver
32. hihosilver28
:-) No worries. I'm looking forward to her finding out about Renly too, which is why I don't want any extra attention being drawn to the phrase Rainbow and Renly. Especially since that association is only applicable to the LGBT movement in recent years.

That is definitely one book development that I completely missed before I watched the show. I had only made it through ACoK before quitting the series, then after the first season I decided to read all the books. So, after the show made it blatant, I was able to see all of the hints that Martin put in the first 2 books before the ASoS chapter where Jaime yells at Loras and makes it much more obvious for the book readers.
Bridget McGovern
33. BMcGovern
You know, it's funny--I thought the main problem was the comment about wolf puppies, which is why I whited that out so quickly. Leigh doesn't know Grey Wind's ultimate fate yet, right? (It's hard to fact-check without your copy at hand, sorry :)
Scott Silver
34. hihosilver28
Bridget, you're correct about Grey Wind. She'll find that out next week in the next 2 chapters. Guh, it's like getting punched repeatedly with all the fallout of the Red Wedding...and then Sansa finds out that Ice was melted about getting kicked while you're down.
Adam S.
35. MDNY
We find out about Robb having Gray Wind's head, and Cat being dumped in the river, in the next chapter when Tywin explains it all in the small council meeting.
36. GarrettC
Honestly, Tywin's death was a much bigger Oh, Shit moment for me than Catelyn's.

Pun gleefully intended.

Although, the one that honestly shocked me most was Joffrey. I knew it should have been inevitable on account of knowing that two leeches had already fallen, but it just seemed like Joffrey was going to live an insufferably long time. (which is not to say that the time he did live was sufferable)
Adam S.
37. MDNY
GarrettC that is awful. Much too easy.
38. GarrettC
Actually, Tywin had a general shit motif, did he not? I know the horse he was riding for the festivities after Blackwater. Then his death. Any others?
James Whitehead
39. KatoCrossesTheCourtyard
@38GarrettC, you figure Martin was going for a "His shit don't stink" theme with Tywin?

40. GarrettC
Or just that he'd been planning that whole "Tywin Lannister did not, in fact, shit gold" line for a couple of books.
Adam S.
41. MDNY
Can I just say that as awesome as Tywin is in the HBO series, I can never forget that the same actor danced in drag in Ali G Indahouse, and thus I always picture Tywin doing that and it totally ruins his image.
Irene Hipo
42. zambi76
Eh, sorry about the puppy spoiler. I was sure Greywind was a obvious gooner already. Oh god, that next Tyrion chapter, can't wait for the show version of that either. ("Everyone is mine to torment!")
George Jong
43. IndependentGeorge
Actually, Tywin had a general shit motif, did he not? I know the horse he was riding for the festivities after Blackwater. Then his death. Any others?
What about putting Tyrion in charge of the drains & cisterns of Casterly Rock? It's Tyrion's job, but it's Tywin who thinks it up.
Chris Nelly
44. Aeryl
@41, He'll always be Dear Sweet Cousin Noompsie to me!
45. Kibbles
Even with Eddard's death (which did shock me) and the Red Wedding, I never thought that anyone could die at any instance in ASOIAF. Maybe this is just hindsight, but it seems clear that certain characters (Daenarys, Jon, Arya, Bran, and Sansa) have longer story arcs that preclude them getting killed. I appreciate GRRM's willingness to kill off main characters, but I also think people go overboard in saying no one is safe.
Chris Nelly
46. Aeryl
They may have longer arcs, so we are assured they'll make it to book 7, but I won't count them as safe. I don't see Arya surviving the series to be honest.
Bridget McGovern
47. BMcGovern
hihosilver28 @34: Thanks! Yeah...for some reason finding out about Grey Wind was even worse than the actual Red Wedding for me--not sure if it's because of all the gut-punching traumatic fallout after such a traumatic event or if maybe I'm just overattached to the direwolves, but that just seemed a step beyond, in terms of authorial sadism. And yet I keep reading (and watching)...
Chris Nelly
48. Aeryl
Yeah, I whimpered when I read what they had done to Robb and Grey Wind.

Then I gleefully started anticipating seeing it on the show, b/c I'm twisted.
Brian Rice
49. briantium
At Aeryl from BPR: the plot twist that happens later in the book that pleasantly surprised me was Jaime's apparent turn from the total douschebag we were introduced to in book one to the somewhat surprisingly decent and honorable fellow who releases Brienne and charges her to find and protect Sansa. I was certain he was going to turn around and betray her the moment she got him to King's Landing.
Brian Rice
50. briantium
Which of course, means, Jaime is now going to get offed at some point. Heh.
Julian Niquille
51. Gesar
Heh, Jaime still has days ahead of him. First Tommen and Myrcella have to die, and then he has to kill Cersei; until then he's fine. That's solid life expectancy right there =)
Scott Silver
52. hihosilver28
Jaime might already be on his way, since Brienne came to get him and bring him back to Stoneheart. Which just breaks my heart. I hope both he and Brienne come out of all that alright.

Bridget, oddly the moment that hit me the most after the immediate gutpunch of the Red Wedding was learning that Tywin had melted down Ice to make the two new Valyrian steel swords. It just felt like everything related to the Starks was being desecrated. Although learning about Grey Wind's head being sewn onto Robb's corpse was like 17 steps too far, even for the Freys. Which makes them becoming the most loathed family in the Seven Kingdoms more than welcome.
53. GarrettC
I think Greywind's death was more of a gut punch because when Robb dies there is still the possibility scratching at the back of your mind that a part of his consciousness wargscaped with his direwolf, and is going to go find Nymeria and have a Stark Family Familiar Reunion and eat all the bad people. But, no. There will be no shreds of consciousness hanging on after the body's death style warging. Dead is dead.

Plus, we don't like it when dogs die.

Also, the hybrid is an extremely clever way to ensure that Robb can't be raised by R'hollor. So, yes, Greywind's death is a gut punch because it ensures that, yes, all hope is in fact lost for any kind of satisfying Stark reunion, canine included. It's like, even the Stark dogs get to be snake-bitten.
Julian Niquille
54. Gesar
@130 (main thread): Funny you mention that, because there's a theory that I find interesting, in which the Undying didn't depict the Red Wedding at all.
Notice how the wolf is on a throne for the Undying, when he is denied a throne by Walder Frey. Notice how the wolf has an iron crown, and Martin went into great detail about Robb's crown, it's in bronze with iron spikes. And why would Robb's dead eyes follow Daenerys?

I'm just saying, if we can never link that prophecy to anything else in
the series, then obviously it was the Red Wedding. But I wouldn't be
surprised if we could link it to something else before the end.
55. Cass3
@54 That's an interesting theory, and one I hadn't heard before. I think the thing that seals it for me, though, is that in a later Tyrion chapter, he thinks about trying to shield Sansa from the worst of the details and rumors . One of those is that the Freys sewed Grey Wind's head onto Robb's body, which is exactly the aftermath Dany saw in the House.
56. Jeff R.
@45:I remain convinced that Martin's got one more real shock death in store, and that Dany will not survive Book 6. In this world, the only way you can only be betrayed three times is if the last one is lethal. (And besides, three dragons on one side makes everything a forgone conclusion, but give one to Jon, one to Tyrion, and one to a Dornishman to be named later (and then let Euron steal one of those three), and you've got an interesting war going on...
Don Barkauskas
57. bad_platypus
Kibbles @45: In the main thread I say there are 5 (+1 possible) that I expect to survive; my list and yours are identical if you add Tyrion.
Lindy Brown
58. lbrown
Before I picked up the third book, I was looking up some stuff about Boros Blount online and I read too much and spoiled myself about Joffrey's death. That definitely made me excited to read the third book.

That's probably how I was able to get through the Red Wedding and keep on reading, because I knew good things were still coming.
59. Ephidel
@56 The three betrayal prophecy always bugged me. Dany gets betrayed multiple times a book, to have a very vague notion of the general theme of three of them is completly useless. Either none of them have happened yet and the three will be something really unique that make them stand out, or the prophecy is actually saying she will end up betraying people three times. After all 'the treasons you will know' is not actually specific on which end of the betrayal she will be on.
Sky Thibedeau
60. SkylarkThibedeau
I can't wait to see the Freys eat more Humble Pie.

The vision of the man on the throne with a wolf's head was sort of a giveaway of the red wedding. I can see why they did not show Dany's visions from the book on HBO.

Tywin and the constant bathroom references proved he indeed did not pass gold in his stool.

Poor Jack Gleeson has done such a great job with Joffrey on the series he's bound to be typecast now like poor Anthony Perkins was. He needs to go and do a RomCom as soon as possible
61. GarrettC
Re: plot armor and untouchables...

The only characters who I've figured are untouchable are Jon and Dany, as they would be Ice and Fire respectively, of which the song is sung,no? And both exiled conveniently to the far corners of the known world, paralleling each other just so. And then everyone else is expendabable as needed.

This interpretation may be wrong, of course.

Although, I would generally like Tyrion to make it, too.
62. Jeff R.
@60: Since we're in a new thread and all, I'll repeat my own prediction on that front. For breaking guest-right, natural justice (which is making a comeback along with dragons and magic) demands that he be brought low in his greatest pride. Which is, of course, his prodigious offspring. So I suspect that he won't die until every last Frey child, grandchild, and great-grandchild, baseborn or not, is also dead. Probably with the last two killing each other right in front of his deathbed.
Rob Munnelly
63. RobMRobM
Re plot armor - there is immediate armor and long-term armor. Even with Jon's events in ADWD, I expect he, Dany and Bran to the final book but would not be surprised if one or more of them ends up sacrificing themselves to win the final battle against the Others. Tyrion, Sansa, Rickon, Theon and Asha - I expect them to have plot armor throughout. Jaime and Brienne - if they survive the next book, yes. Jojen - dead. Meera - ? Stannis - dead (killed by Dany). Mel - likely dead. Cersei - dead. Dorne people - dead. Tyrells - dead, etc.
64. Black Dread
Reading Leigh's post, I keep thinking of Wyman Manderly's speech in A Dance with Dragons. Like him, I'm tired of eating Lannister and Frey shit and declaring it good. I hate the Boltons and the rest and want them dead.

I love Manderly because with him and Doran Martell, we finally have people as smart and manipulative as the Lannisters and Freys. And Manderly is bad-ass enough to feed the Freys their own relatives in a pie.
Adam S.
65. MDNY
As an overweight man (mildly, not morbidly obese like the Manderlys) I love Wyman Manderly. He plays himself as weak, and gets away with it because he's fat. Then he goes and serves up the Freys their own relatives, he remains loyal to his liege lords the Starks, he agres to follow Stannis only because he's better than the current alternatives but manages to extract a price of rescuing the missing Stark boys (one of them at least), plus he was the ONLY northerner to think of building up a naval force. He's smart, loyal, and has a really dark sense of irony (i.e. the humble pies served to the Freys). Manderly FTW!!!!
Chris Nelly
66. Aeryl
All this talk for Frey pies finally spurred to me to order ADWD!!!!
Rob Munnelly
67. RobMRobM
Aeryl - Frey pie is very subtle in text. You're getting a goft having it flagged for you to look at in advance.
68. amyangyl
Hiho. The scene in Dance that made me cry was when the Night's Watch men all stabbed Jon. Now, that was a cliffhanger, and I don't believe he's really dead based on an interview with GRRM, and his penchant for those type of cliffhangers, but the scene just really touched me emotionally, and I didn't think this particular series could do that anymore. For the record my unspoiled husband has been a show fan since episode 1, and when he saw me sitting on the couch crying with my book, all he could say was "Don't tell me who just died" Which of course I didn't, I'm super protective of his non-spoiled status.
Now, off to read this thread more thoroughly.
Corkryn Williams
69. MadCow21
I wasn't even remotely upset by Jon's cliffhanger ending because GRRM had already essentially diffused any potential suspense it may have represented via the otherwise pointless Varamyr prologue. It seems that its sole purpose for existing was to establish that a warg may be able to survive the death of his own body by permanently taking control of another human being. Between that and Orell's "haunting" of his eagle, it's not too difficult to predict where that storyline is headed.

Granted, the foreshadowing was a little less subtle than I'm used to seeing in this series, but if it was just a headfake, I will be surprised...which wouldn't really surprise me....wait...*head asplodes*
Chris Nelly
70. Aeryl
If Jon has "lost" his body, I'll be SOFA KING pissed.
George Jong
72. IndependentGeorge
@62 - I actually think Walder Frey will die of natual causes, smug and satisfied with his treachery. Roughly thirty seconds after his death (or even slightly before), the Freys will turn on each other to secure their own inheritance. By the end of the series, I expect more Freys to have been killed by each other than by any outsider.
73. SKM
I refuse to believe that Jon will live on as a permanent warg, because that is really, ridiculously stupid.

My money's on "Melisandre will bring him back, after which he will leave the Night's Watch (because he did in fact die and thus end his watch), at which point he can go meet up with the oft-mentioned Howland Reed and learn his true parentage, which will in turn lead him to seek out Dany."

Also, the successor commander to Jon will majorly fuck up, paving the way for Sam the Slayer to become the 1000th Commander of the Night's Watch and lead the final battle with the Others (which I hope he will rub in Randyll Tarly's stupid face until eternity).

You read it here first.
74. amyangyl
Like I said, taking time to think about it, I don't believe he's dead. Or stays dead. Or whatever, there are a few possibilities, and I don't subscribe to any one over the others at this point, other than I don't believe his story is finished. But I've only read it once, and for whatever reason, that scene elicited an emotional response from me while reading it. Hiho had asked me to come here and tell what scene made me cry after I said I was through caring about these characters, and that was the one.
Corkryn Williams
75. MadCow21
@73 Even if Jon were legitimately released from his oath in such a manner, I would think it extremely out of character for him to abandon the Watch. He just doesn't seem like the type of guy who could allow himself to exploit such a loophole, what with him being Ned Stark's "son" and all.

I actually hadn't thought of Melisandre stealing Thoros's thunder (fire?). That's a good point. Didn't she leave the Wall towards the end of the book though? I remember her warning Jon about his impending perforation, but I thought she did so on her way out the door. It's been a while since I finished Dance, and I haven't reread it yet.

If I had to guess the identity of the 1000th LCC of the Watch, I would bet on Jon Snow Part II. A new LCC may be elected while Jon is assumed dead, and when that turns out to not be the case, they'll give him a second term once Captain Placeholder gets shuffled off or abdicates (if that's an option, I don't recall).
Brandon Lammers
76. wickedkinetic
Why not Mance? - Stannis owes him and will need someone to maintain and manage the mix of black cloaks and wildlings - he's got the charisma and hates the 'others' - and it'd be very complicated....... from black cloak to turncloak to Lord Commander -

Littlefinger was robbing the country blind - there's a subtle reference to him having a few very large and peculiarly heavy 'tapestries' from Kings Landing to the Vale - I guarantee a good portion of the King's Debt went into those tapestries, as coin sewn in or by some other hiding method....
77. Jeff R.
On notes that nothing in the watch oath is at all inconsistent with serving as regent to an infant, orphaned King.
78. Gold for Petyr
5. IndependentGeorge

My thoughts exactly.

72. IndependentGeorge

Black Walder will take over. The Freys will rise again.
Shelly wb
79. shellywb
With all the talk about the fantasy cliches GRRM has been subverting, doesn't anyone think he'll have them all fail at the end? It's what I expect. I think that none of the things we think are important really are, and that the theories we're stringing together will all come to naught, and because people ignored warning signs and starting caring far too late, the Others will win and reclaim Westeros. And if Dany is smart she'll stay where she is, and she'll finally rule the humans that are left.
80. Gold for Petyr
@79. shellywb:

The Others winning would also be cliche. I think they wi;ll turn out to just be another faction to be accomadated like the wildlings.
George Jong
82. IndependentGeorge
Hey, is it safe for one of the mods to forward a link to the GOT/Princess Bride parody to Leigh? I think it's spoiler-free, and it might actually cheer her up. Or not.
David Goodhart
88. Davyd
Holy crap. I can't take this episode. #nerves
Lindy Brown
89. lbrown
@67 Oh, good, because I totally missed that, although I do remember some missing Freys.
Zorila Desufnoc Eht
92. AlirozTheConfused

Zorila Desufnoc Eht
93. AlirozTheConfused
97. SKM
@75, Melisandre was still at the wall. Jon was on his way to go meet her when he was stabbed. Also, honor or no honor, I highly doubt even Ned Stark would stick around after being stabbed to death by a faction of his comrades (nor do I think the Watch would allow an undead Jon to stick around, given that undead people are their current #1 threat).

But Jon pulling a President Cleveland and coming back as the 1000th commander I could see as a possibility, especially if he comes back at Dany's side to fight the Others. Undead or not, the guy with the giant freaking dragon would certainly be my first pick to lead that battle...
98. betsy
@62. Given Walder Frey's tendency to name most of his offspring after himself, if a person were to simply put 'W. Frey' on a death-list, the bodies might really pile up. @ 76 Wouldn't even have to be coin, which the suspicious might feel through the fabric. Turn the coin into gold wire and stitch that down ('couching' in the technical term). It's fancy royal tapestry, OF COURSE it's blinged up: gold crowns, gold armour, jewels, anybody got a yellow horse? More gold. It would spread the weight out, and then, when you want the gold and jewels back, just burn the thing and sift through the ashes.
Adam S.
99. MDNY
Why would Jon Snow leave the Nights Watch? Even if he was released from his service by his "death" after being stabbed at the end of ADWD? When Jon tried to run away and the other brothers brought him back, he listened to Mormont and realized that the wall was the site of the truly important battle. I don't think he would leave now, for any reason.
As for him running off to join Dany, I think it's more him being there when she finally arrives at Westeros (with a dragon just WAITING for a rider). Not sure at what point his parentage will be revealed- likely by Howland Reed, but possibly someone else knows as well (we never did find out what was in Ned's last letter, or who it went to-or whether Varys read it).
Walder Frey made an agreemet with Robb to let his army pass and join with him, but he was able to extract a price for doing what he should already have been willing to do for free. Remember that the Tullys are his liege lords, yet he has a long history of minimizing his aid to them (they call him the "late" lord Frey because of this). Robb should never have had to be in that position in the first place. That said, once he made an agreement, Robb could not break it and expect to get away with it. He doomed his own cause by thinking with his cock.

On the TV series, I was a little taken aback that the blackfish was at the wedding, and then left to piss just before the doors were closed. I was also surprised that they had Robb's wife attend- that was just stupid of Robb and Cat to bring her considering the insult to the Freys, not to mention her being at risk (they were all at risk, but she would seem to be even more so without knowing ahead of time that Frey was just going to murder everyone). Overall, though, the scene was haunting, just like the book.
Chris Nelly
100. Aeryl
I don't buy that Blackfish survived just because he left the hall, they were killing people outside too.

Now that Robb's possible heir is out of play, having him hold Riverrun serves little purpose now.

I'm also calling that the show confirmed, as much as possible in the time given, Blackfish's sexuality. It wasn't just "Ew, no thanks Frey's" it was a visible shudder of revulsion at the thought of any woman.
Deana Whitney
101. Braid_Tug
Holy *$%)!
I just hopped over here to see what everyone has done over the weekend.
Over 200 on the main post and 100+ here?!

Thanks for the new space, otherwise we might have broken the sight!

Now to read the comments here.

@ Aeryl - congrats on the Hunny!

Re: HBO - if anyone runs into a great "reaction" video to the Red Wedding, could you share it? All my non-book reader friends were too far away for me to see their reactions.

Edit: Read the Comments
Re: Gray Wind – Triple punch in the guts! I was spoiled, so knew Robb was dead before I ever picked the books up, but that came out of left field. Agree with @52.hihosilver28, that was going too far. Even if he did have some “justification” for his killing Robb.

@67, Frey pies?! I so did not read aDwD closely enough. Think I even skipped chapters. Maybe when Leigh gets to it, or when Winds is publish, I’ll try again.

@73, SKM – nice thought, but since Sam is training to be a Master, I think that takes him outside the running of being the next NW Commander. But I could be wrong.

@ Aliroz – now that’s dedication!
Julian Niquille
102. Gesar
The amount of people twitting that they will stop watching the show is sooooo damn high Oô.

I know a lot of them will be there next week, and it's similar to what a lot of people experience when they have to drop the book for a couple days and then get back to it, but still, I'm disappointed at my fellow showwatchers on a general level.
Chris Nelly
103. Aeryl
@102, That's why I think excluding Joff's death from this season is a bad move. I think they'd come back if they knew he was next. Most people aren't going to connect it just yet with Mel. At least, there needs to be a REAL BIG CLUE, in ep 10 to get em back next year. It'll likely happen early, as dealing with Tyrion's fallout is the bulk of the remaining story left in SOS.
Julian Niquille
104. Gesar
Well considering we have to see Yara at some point in this season, I'd say Balon is likely to bite it in the 10th, which would be a decent-sized clue.

The vast majority will come back, anyway. I'm not worried for the show, I just didn't expect the urge to go on that scale. I was already surprised by the reactions on Leigh's read...

Edit: I mean, I did expect a twitter explosion. I just thought it would be 'OMG WTF I NEED TO SEE WHAT HAPPENS NEXT' rather than 'OMG WTF **** THIS **** I DON'T WANT TO KNOW ANYMORE"
Marty Beck
105. martytargaryen
Aeryl@103 - I was thinking the same thing re offing Joff.

They all need hope....I wonder if The Show will throw them a bone next week, or at least a gimpse of hope
106. Insomnia333
@101 - got this from another site, but it's a compilation of Red Wedding reactions:

For the twitter reactions try:
107. Jeff R.
I wonder if they could move the first appearance of UnCat up to the finale, and if that would qualify as a glimpse of hope...
Janet Hopkins
108. JanDSedai
So, this is what I see happening; there are three dragons, and we need three dragon riders. Dany is the last Targaryn, and Jon Snow is her nephew. Who is the third? I think Mad King Aerys took a liking to his Hand's wife. Well, we are told that (can't remenber whose POV). What if Tyrion is Aerys' bastard son? Goes a long way to explaining Tywin's antipathy to his third child. We have seen the Horn of Winter, and the Iron Men are bringing (brought?) the Dragon Horn to Dany. So the lines are being drawn; Fire (dragons) and Ice (others). GRRM says the ending will be bittersweet. I take that to mean the Others will be defeated, but some favorite characters will be killed. And the suvival o the social order is probably in question, also.
Tom Smith
109. phuzz
I've been expecting Joff's wedding to be the next episode (last of this season), purely as a sop to everyone shocked by this one (look! bad people die too!) and perhaps Balon dying as well, then all three leaches are done.

And watching my four flatmates watch that episode with no idea of what is coming == bloody priceless :) Even if the show wasn't as good as it is, watching their reaction is hilarious.

Also, @108. JanDSedai "suvival of the social order is probably in question" - Given the general social order in Westeros (not to mention Slaver's Bay), that could be a good thing.
Chris Nelly
110. Aeryl
@109, I don't think the Purple wedding will happen. But I think the hairnet will show up.
Adam S.
111. MDNY
Just to continue my post on the main thread: A Song of Ice and Fire is the title of the series. That exact phrase was used by Raegar when he described Aegon to Elia... and now a man has emerged who is named "Aegon", claiming to be the murdered child. If he is Aegon, then he is the one from Dany's vision, and thus may be the one to whom the series title is referring. Many people don't like this idea (including me), because we haven't been following Aegon for 5 books, and he seems to be getting in the way of the characters we are rooting for. But I don't think that matters for GRRM, who has shown that he's all about subverting the tropes, and sucker-punching his readers for sh*ts and giggles. I DO think that he is serious about the title of his series, and that we should keep that title in mind when we make assumptions or inferences about what may happen down the road.
Chris Nelly
112. Aeryl
We don't know that was Elia he was talking to. It could have been Lyanna, and Jon's name has been changed from Aegon. Rhaegar was not the only one who was aware of the Prophecy, I have no doubt Varys learned of it(especially if my suspicions, voiced by Arya, that Varys is a sorceror/shadowbinder, are correct), and if he were to manufacture a "hero", Aegon would be the way to go about it. We still have the Mummer's Dragon to discover as well.

How would Rhaegar's son by a Southron woman be the Song of ICE and Fire. Ice comes from the North, and that means Lyanna.
Adam S.
113. MDNY
I agree that Ice and Fire sounds like it would be Jon, who unifies the North with his Stark blood, with the fire of his Targaryan father. But the term is used in the books, and it is used by Rhaegar. Perhaps the woman in the vision was Lyanna, not Elia.
However, I think people are too quick to dismiss Aegon just because he didn't pop until after 4 books. This is GRRM we're dealing with, it would be just like him to introduce the real hero in the 5th book, when no one is intereste in rooting for him wholeheartedly. That said, Jon may have the true song of ice and fire, due to his mix of targ and stark blood, plus his warging.
If there's one thing you CAN be sure of in ASOIAF, it's that the most obvious answer is probably wrong, and it's useless to hope for something rather than just accept what GRRM doles out.
Chris Nelly
114. Aeryl
I don't think the "4 books into the series" has anything to do with it, it's the fact that Dany was told there would be a pretend Targ.
Adam S.
115. MDNY
You mean the "mummers dragon" ?
Adam S.
117. MDNY
I'm torn on that one. I'm not sure that he's a total contruct by Varys/Ilyrio, I believe he may be rea. I think there need to be 3 in the end ("the dragon has 3 heads"). If he's NOT the real Aegon, we still need a 3rd to join Dany and Jon. I've seen speculation on the mummers dragon not necessarily meaning Aegon is fake, but we don't have enough info yet to know how real he may be.
Chris Nelly
118. Aeryl
I think the 3rd head is Tyrion, so we will have to wait and see.

But I'm very invested in Arianne Martell's story, and she was only introduced after 3 books. But she was introduced into a dynamic fascinating world we've only had hints about(Dorne), was demonstrated to be cunning, confident, and sensual. I don't how Aegon was introduced,(still waiting for my copy of ADWD in the mail) but concern over the Mummer's Dragon probably has a lot to do with the suspicions he faces from fans.
119. Jeff R.
@117: A+J=T.

And if not, or if, like me, you don't believe that Dany is one of the heads, there are quite a few people with not-insignificant quantities of Targ blood running around in the South. (Edric Dayne, for one.)
Chris Nelly
120. Aeryl
Dany had better be one of the heads. Having a girl Targ, with two "brothers" is a nice inversion of Aegon and his two sisters. If the heads of the dragon are a total sausage fest, I'll quit these books.
Adam S.
121. MDNY
I don't like heat too much, but I think Dorne would at least be a cool place to visit, and their food sounds awesome.

I feel like Aegon/fake Aegon/whoever may not survive long enough to meet Dany and her dragons anyway, the way things are going. I always liked the idea of Tyrion riding a dragon, but he has NO Targ blood in him (or hardly any at least), unlike Jon or Aegon if hes real. I also don't buy the Bran dragon theory, that's just crazy talk- though I would buy him warging a dragon to bring them to the North and introduce them to Jon.
Chris Nelly
122. Aeryl
Tyrion is the bastard son of Aerys. Whether it was a consensual tryst with Joanna Lannister isn't known, but it's a definite possibility(Tyrion's bastardy has been foreshadowed A LOT).

Or he is a chimera, a conjoined fraternal twin, one belonging to Tywin, the other Aerys(Joanna Lannister had a history of multiple ovulations).

There is a lot of circumstantial evidence littered throughout the series hinting at that, like the fact that, in a series titled ICE AND FIRE, only 3 characters have anything to do with the actual element, Dany(birthing dragons), Jon(killing the wight), and Tyrion(luring the Mountain tribes).
123. Jeff R.
MDNY: The Tyrion theory is based on the supposition that he's not a kinslayer, after all. (Well, unless killing cousins counts, and if that were so nobody could be in a war at all without risk of being cursed by gods and men.) Which is to say that Tywin wasn't wrong when he doubted Tyrion's legitimacy, and that the actual father was Aerys. There are a lot of things in various parts of the book that are at least suggestive of this when you read with this theory in mind.

I'm convinced. Martin is doing the equivalent of tradecraft in tailing a target: one of the tails is obvious (in this case, Jon); the subject is meant to notice that one and thus not go looking for the other one...
Rob Munnelly
124. RobMRobM
For amusement purposes, google Storm of Swords It Gets Better and view the video. Came out in Fall 2012 and is quite appropriate here.
Adam S.
125. MDNY
I just don't buy Tyrion as a Targ. There's no indication of Tywin and his wife ever having problems, and every bastard reference he makes to Tyrion is along the lines of "I wish you were not a bastard", but there's never been any real indication that Joanna? Lannister slept with anyone other than Tywin. Plus, someone has to inherit Casterly Rock in the end.
RobM- very amusing video, second city is funny.
Chris Nelly
126. Aeryl
There was a reason Tywin quit as Hand, and it's believed Aerys rape/seduction of Joanna is the cause.

It's also hinted that Tywin has a prostitute problem, so that could have caused a problem with him and Joanna.

It's more likely, that if something happened between Joanna and Aerys, it was likely NOT consensual, I just don't want to automatically exclude the possibility that it was.

Tyrion also has that black eye, which some people suspect could actually be a very dark purple. And Tywin says that he cannot prove Tyrion is a bastard, not that he isn't a bastard.

Also don't forget, we live in a fucked up culture, where still to this day, if a woman is raped, it's viewed as an insult to the man she "belongs" to, as well as a violation of the woman. It was even worse in the time frame these books are drawn from, and for a man as powerful as Tywin to admit his wife was raped and her lastborn child a king's bastard, would NOT have happened. So the fact that there are no indications, isn't an indication that it didn't happen.

I don't think this book will end with any of the major houses(Tully and Stark are already "gone", Arryn's about to fall as well as Baratheon) still standing, so I don't think Casterly Rock will go to the Lannisters(I think the Tyrells will take it, after the Dornish force them out of Highgarden)
George Jong
127. IndependentGeorge
Just answering a couple points from the discussion in the chapter thread:

I don't necessarily disagree, but I still feel, all evidence to the contrary, that this is still MAINLY the Starks story, because while everyone has counted them out, most of them are actually still alive and involved in what's happening to the country.
The story is "A Song of Ice and Fire". Not Winter is Coming, Wolves vs Lions, or anything like that. Not even anything about dragons.
I think what I'm getting at is that when I say the Seven Kingdoms won't exist anymore, it means that all of the existing political structure is going to be moot. The final act is going to be a zombie movie, and in a zombie movie, the high and mighty eventually learn that nobody gives a damn who did what back when the world still existed.

The winter apocalypse is going to be far bigger and far more devastating than anything we've seen before. Yes, the Starks will still be there, and maybe they'll have their titles restored, but when most of the population is wiped out, that really won't mean much. Stark Lannister, Baratheon, Tyrell, Targaryen - every one of them is going to have to dig ditches, shovel shit, and break their backs in the fields like a peasant just to survive.

What I see isn't so much the Starks being returned to prominence, but every other family being brought to their level.
Adam S.
128. MDNY
The Tyrells are just waiting for something major to happen to them. Them, the Martells, and Littlefinger have been relatively unscathed so far, but the Tyrells are the ones who haven't really suffered at all, and have mostly profited (increased influence, now queen to Tommen). So they're due for a spectacular fall.
The Martells could go any way. Part of why I like them is how crafty their prince is, yet he seems to have a kind of honor about him. Despite his honor, I think he has a good plan for how to make alliances. I don't see the Tyrells being allowed to just take Casterly, I think Tyrion will get it. Assuming everyone survives the winter apocalypse.
Oh, and for poetic justice I think Littlefinger should end up working in one the Yunkai pleasure houses- and I don't mean as a pimp. I hate that guy.
I don't have predictions on the Greyjoys cause I really don't care about them.
Chris Nelly
129. Aeryl
I agree IG, but didn't want to say all that in the main thread.
Jakub Wrobel
130. ptyx
It's obvious that the three dragonriders will be:
1. Dany
2. Jon
3. Hodor

Obviously, Hodor only as a puppet, because the dragon will be controlled by Bran.
Thus, this will fulfil the theme of Ice (Bran), Fire (Dany) and Ice&Fire united (Jon)

Whether A+J=T is true is irrelevant IMO, because of Quaithe's vision.
131. MJF
@MDNY: Doran Martell is my favourite character in the whole series, but holy crap does that man have DOOMED stamped all over him in big, fiery letters.
Adam S.
132. MDNY
@ 131 MJF: Doran is awesome. And a dead man. The mystery is how he dies. It won't be as sad as some other characters when he goes, because he's older and sick.
@130 ptyx: Now THAT I would love to see. Hodor is already virtually unstoppable when someone else controls him. Hodor on a dragon? No contest- though I think it will take like TEN YEARS for them to grow big enough to take him on as a rider. And if Bran's warg control ever wavers, I could see Hodor freaking out and falling off. I also think Westeros is screwed if Hodor dies and becomes a wight.
Chris Nelly
133. Aeryl
@130, Can you clarify what you are referring to with Quaithe's vision? All I can remember is the "You must go east to go west, go north to go south...."

Which is why I fel that, as awesome as the Martell's are, their purpose is to distract Dany. Knowing she'll have allies in the South will make her consider going there first when she gets to Westeros, but she really needs to go North.
Adam S.
134. MDNY
I always thought it would be funny if Danny just circumnavigates the globe to make Quithe's instructions work. After all, face south and keep going and eventually you'll reach the North pole; keep going east and eventually you'll end up in California (after the Pacific)- in GRRM's world, I guess you'd reach Lannisport eventually. Somehow, I don't think that's what she meant.
We all know that Dany needs to go North eventually, where her dragons are really needed. Not sure why she needs to go south first, though.
Chris Nelly
135. Aeryl
No, the instructions say To go South, you must first go North, To go West, you must first go East.

The assumption, is that by conquering Slaver's Bay, she is in fact going East(Essos). But the Martell's showing up, saying WE SUPPORT YOU, could lure her to go South first.
George Jong
136. IndependentGeorge
If she heads east with Euron's fleet, she can circumnavigate the world and land in the Westerlands. Then, with Marwin's guidance, she can take Oldtown bloodlessly as her ancestors did, before heading to King's Landing or the North.

I think the Martells are going to back (f)Aegon instead of Dany, and there needs to be a resolution there before turning North.

Regardless, I'm a Stannis man to the core, and I hope she fails.
Julian Niquille
137. Gesar
@135: I was pretty sure I remembered the opposite, so I checked awoiaf, and the quote they have is: "To go north, you must journey south, to reach the west you must go east. To go forward you must go back and to touch the light you must pass beneath the shadow." So Dany does need to go south before she goes north (and that makes sense, she has to have the Martells)
Chris Nelly
138. Aeryl
Tyrion is going to be in all kinds of deep shit if he manages to misplace his bride

Chris Nelly
139. Aeryl
Wonder how much she'll love the Queen of Thorns when she kills Joffrey. Or if she'll lose sight of that because Tyrion's framed for it.
Chris Nelly
140. Aeryl
Wonder how much she'll love the Queen of Thorns when she kills Joffrey. Or if she'll lose sight of that because Tyrion's framed for it.
Faiz Imam
141. FaizImam
whoa, one chapter only, but it might be the meatiest anaysis she's ever done. that was long.

She's asking all the right questions, I assume we'll revisit it over the next weeks.

Next week: Davos hears about the RW and reads a letter and Jon knows nothing for the last time.

ETA: I read the whole series not figuring out Queen of Thorns did the deed, which is only explained by the fact that I marathonned them all. I really am curious to know how much she'll deduce.
142. zambi76
Wonder how much she'll love the Queen of Thorns when she kills Joffrey.
Or if she'll lose sight of that because Tyrion's framed for it.
And Sansa kinda. (As a big Sansa and Tyrell fan this will never stop not being hillarious to me). GRRM is a big mean troll.

Not surprised she didn't get the fake Renly vis a vis fake Arya reference. Many people seem to have not the slightest idea what the Renly's ghost stuff even means until Jaime lets Loras spill the beans. GRRM was a bit too cryptic here. Even Tyrion seems lost.
Adam S.
143. MDNY
Tell me you figured out who was "Renly" before it was revealed by Loras later in this book, and I will call you "liar". Oh, it's easy to figure out that SOMEONE wore his distinctive armor and led the troops. But to "figure out" that it was Garlan Tyrell, the random Tyrell we don't know? No. There is no way to know what the deal is with Renly's ghost until later. So everyone STOP saying it in the main thread, Leigh shouldn't know yet because it has not been revealed.
Chris Nelly
144. Aeryl
And pointing out IMPOSTER!!!! is a huge spoiler that they will be sending an imposter North to marry Ramsay.
Irene Hipo
145. zambi76
I didn't figure out shit since I read the ASOIAF Wiki before the books :P

Yeah, people are really confused that this is actually not revealed in ACOK but much later in ASOS. Some have complained too late, since absolutely no one cared about "Blackwater" at that point anymore. (I'm also suspicious that not many even really read the converation between Loras and Jaime beyond his dick messuring joke but then I'm biased)
George Jong
146. IndependentGeorge
Sweet merciful crap. And here we thought that all of the HINT HINT HINT!!! would stop at the Red Wedding. Hell, even the mention that someone was wearing Renly's armor is a spoiler at this point.
147. DRickard
Thought for the day: assuming that Jon "you know nothing" Snow isn't dead, what will he do when he learns that Stannis/Melisandre laid a curse on big bro Robb?
Chris Nelly
148. Aeryl
I don't buy that they did, though I know Stannis certainly thinks so.

Mel saw them all die in her visions, and decided to use those deaths to convince Davos she had the power to birth dragons using Edric Storm's blood. The schemes to murder Robb, Joff and Balon(assasinated by a Faceless Man* hired by Euron) were already rolling when Mel did her spell.

Not that that's a distinction Jon will appreciate if someone spills the beans.

*This is even more true, if the Faceless Man in question is Jaqen H'gar, who was likely en route when captured. But if Jaqen is Pate in Oldtown now, then it was another Faceless Man, and since they come from across the sea in Braavos, that still points to the fact that the deaths were planned way before Mel ever did her spell.

I went along with the belief that she had done the spell, b/c that's what the book showed me, but I found it hard to accept, something so small could have such a large effect. But someone, RobM I think, pointed out that the plans had to be underway, and I was like, DUH!
Faiz Imam
149. FaizImam
I agree, and as non beleiver in the Red God, Jon would not be predisposed to "blame" Mel or Stannis.

And that is assuming he even finds out at all, It's a non-issue in my opinion.
Chris Nelly
150. Aeryl
@149, I could definitely see Jon blaming them, regardless if he believes in the Red God or not, b/c it was still using magic, which he has seen, to affect an outcome.

As far as not finding out, he will, just to create drama. Just like he'll NEVER learn R+L=J, just to troll fans.
George Jong
151. IndependentGeorge
@148 - I never understood the theory that it was Jaqen that killed Balon. There's some indication that Euron hired a Faceless Man, but there's no indication it was Jaqen. In fact, logistically, it makes far more sense that it is not Jaqen, as it is far more likely that Euron would have hired him in Braavos.
Chris Nelly
152. Aeryl
I don't hold to that theory, that every Faceless Man MUST BE Jaqen. I do think he's Pate though. Just including it for the fact that the logistics were ongoing before Mel did her spell.
Adam S.
153. MDNY
No way Jaquen killed Balon. Jaquen was on his way to do a mission when he got sidetracked with Biter, Rorge, Arya et al. He pops up again in Oldstown. He had no time to go to the Iron isles, plus his contract is for someone in the south. It is possible a faceless man killed Balon, but why does it have to be one? Why not another assassin, or even just Melisandre's Rhillor invocation, or something? Maybe I'm forgetting something, but I didn't think we ever had conclusive evidence of foul play other than the coincidence of his brother showing up 2 days after he dies.
George Jong
154. IndependentGeorge
It is possible a faceless man killed Balon, but why does it have to be one?

It's not conclusive, but the Ghost of High Heart's vision of a man without a face with a crow on his shoulder, standing on a bridge, is very suggestive. It's not as definitive as Pate (whose killer matches Jaqen's description in COK exactly), but the circumstantial evidence suggests that Euron hired a Faceless Man.
Chris Nelly
155. Aeryl
The Ghost of High Heart mentions something about a man with no face pushing a king.
Marie Veek
156. SlackerSpice
@155: Actually, it's "a man without a face, waiting on a swaying bridge, on his shoulders perched a drowned crow with seaweed hanging from its wings."
158. Asbjorn
Can't we all agree not to warn Leigh that the Purple Wedding chapters need to go together? It will be much better if she is completely surprised by that.
George Jong
159. IndependentGeorge
Well, the Purple Wedding is split into three chapters , so it was unlikely that she was going recap all of them in one week anyway. As it is, assuming she's off on the 4th, Joffrey's death likely comes after a two-week gap.

Regardless, I agree - I don't think anything's important enough that it needs to be grouped with another chapter. Let's just let her proceed at her own pace from here on out.
Jakub Wrobel
160. ptyx
Sorry for late answer.
I meant the other vision (from ADWD):

Soon comes the pale mare, and after her the others. Kraken and dark
flame, lion and griffin, the sun’s son and the mummer’s dragon. Trust none of them.
Faiz Imam
161. FaizImam
Hey, RobMRobM.

What "Bon Mot" comment are you referring to in this weeks post?

It's long and wide ranging enough that I'm not sure.
Rob Munnelly
162. RobMRobM
@161 - not as great as some of our earlier ones but "...I mean, I suppose on general principle I am, because Tyrion is going to be in all kinds of deep shit if he manages to misplace his bride and he knows it...."

Indeed, here is 10% of the second half of ASOS in a nutshell.
Adam S.
163. MDNY
Anything linking Tyrion, Tywin, and shit has good comedic value for later in the book. It struck me that Tywin as a character is linked with feces quite a lot in the series: the saying about him shitting gold, him riding his horse into the throne room and it taking a dump, and of course his dying on the privy and the lingering smell at his funeral. Tywin is the shit, y'all.
Chris Nelly
165. Aeryl
Defending Jaime on the other thread has brought back around into how much I've grown to dislike Ned.

Ned is bigotted, close-minded, has little cunning. He has honor, sure, but even that he's willing to put aside for love and family(NOT A BAD THING, TO BE CLEAR).

He prejudged Jaime, just because he's a Lannister. He never asked Jaime, "What happened here?" He was Jaime and a dead king, and never thought twice.

He adored Robert, runner up #2 is WORST KING EVAH*(Aerys still champ, with Joff as runner up #1). He ignored his daughter's education in court politics, then decided to take them to court, innocent and ignorant. He only paid attention to what Arya wanted b/c it was boyish, he still thought Sansa wanted DOLLS, cuz she's a GURL.

This next is just speculation, but I'm sure most'll agree it's based off likely truths.

Brandon and Rickard Stark were killed because they went to King's Landing to demand that Rhaegar give Lyanna back. Aerys, being terrible, kills them which was wrong. BUT SO WERE THEY!! (Not in their world, but at the same time, I don't accept that readers are supposed to judge these characters solely on the morals of their world, not ours) They didn't deserve to die for it, but FUCK THAT!!!

And that's what Ned and Robert were "defending", not just the removal of Aerys, but the right to deny a woman bodily autonomy.

So, while I still like Ned, I don't like him as much as I did when I started the story, and I find that he's the character my opinion has changed about the most as the story progresses.

*Probably not EVAH, there is 8000 years of history to cover, but I remain by my adamant stance that Robert was a terrible choice for these people to back, and if Lyanna hadn't been involved, they likely would have worked with Rhaegar to remove him, and Rhaegar's a better choice if Targ blood is supposed to be so important.

Now, if you hold the belief that the only way the dragons could be born, were for Dany to endure what she did, then the Targ family fall was necessary. But just because somebody's actions serve the plot destiny of the story(dragons vs WW), doesn't make their actions excusable.
166. Jeff R.
Well, I don't think that Rickard* and Brandon actually knew at the time that Lyanna went willingly.

(I do suspect that Aerys did know that key fact, though, and assumed that the Starks were in on it and lying to his face. Because I still think that Rhaegar's setting Elia aside for Lyanna can't be anything other than the first step toward rebelling against his father, which would have happened if an entirely non-intra-family rebellion didn't jump the gun. Which would have never happened if Robert's best friend Eddard hadn't happened to inherit house Stark)

*: Rickard may well have been actually in on Rhaegar's plans, in which case he was lying and admirably managed to avoid spilling the beans even under those conditions.
Bill Stusser
167. billiam
@ 165

You may or may not be right about why Brandon went to KL, at this point we don't have enough information on what he did or did not know, but not about Rickard. He went to KL not because of Lyanna but because after Brandon was arrested and held prisoner the king demanded he submit himself for trial.

Also, the rebellion had nothing to do with getting Lyanna back or denying her bodily autonomy. Yes, that was Robert's motivation, but he didn't start the rebellion, Jon Arryn did. Jon Arryn called in his banners to fight against Aerys because he, unlike Rickard Stark, wasn't stupid enough to either answer the king's summons to KL or to surrender Ned and Robert for trial as ordered.
Julian Niquille
168. Gesar
Okay, I'm 90% positive that I read a theory somewhere about R'hllor and the Great Other being a single entity. I can't find this again anymore, and I really need this to be possible and not baseless in order to theorycraft something I'm working on. Does someone know what I'm talking about, and if so, could they link it please?
George Jong
169. IndependentGeorge
So this week's Davos chapter is going to be interesting in light of the character assassination Stannis suffers in the show.
Chris Nelly
170. Aeryl
The whole "Tyrion is a bastard" contingent gotta heaping dose of suspicion last night, with Tywin's "You're a Lannister" and "Chose to raise you as my son".

I think Tywin's decision to raise Tyrion, ultimately links back to the Lannister family tradition that the family name could be passed through the women.

Joanna Lannister was a Lannister by birth as well as marriage, so if Tyrion is illegitimate by Aerys, he's still a Lannister in Tywin's eyes, by being Joanna's son. Just as Joffrey, Myrcella and Tommen are legitimate in Tywin's eyes, for being Cercei's children.
Adam S.
171. MDNY
Aeryl- where did you get that Lannisters inherit through the female side? Yes, Tywin married his cousin, but that doesn't mean they always do. And when Jaime gets back to Kings Landing, Tywin wants him to leave the kingsguard so he can inherit Casterly Rock. Tywin certainly didn't intend him to marry Cersei, he likely wanted Jaime to marry some other strategically important noblewoman. Jaime would have married a non-Lannister, and become the head of the house when Tywin dies. I don't recall ever reading that the Lannisters inherit through the female side. Do you have a specific passage on that?
Chris Nelly
172. Aeryl
They don't inherit, but the name can be passed down through the woman. It's been discussed a bit with that new book on Westeros GRRM has coming out.

Here's a line from the GOT wiki:

Through the female line, they boast of descent from Lann the Clever, the legendary trickster of the Age of Heroes who swindled Casterly Rock from its previous rulers.

So the idea of the woman passing the name has a history with the Lannisters. They aren't Dornes, who say the girl can inherit, but I can see that they would view the children of Lannister women as legitimate, even if the relationship was not.

If Tyrion is an illegitimate Targ, he could still be viewed as a Lannister through his mother.
Chris Nelly
173. Aeryl
HA, She is gonna get SO MAD during AFFC, in re Davos.

And I like how she just assumed Davos won't mention that to Stannis.

She's going to be pleasantly surprised.
Chris Nelly
174. Aeryl
I'm also about halfway through ADWD, and I have yet to find fault with it. It's not as good as ASOS, but it's not as bad as the impressions I've gotten had led me to believe it would be.

The through line of IDENTITY has got me fascinated. EVERYONE in this one is doubting who they are, who they will be, it's really fascinating stuff.

And Jorah is disgusting, FYI. I hope Dany kills him when he gets back. And I could have gon my whole life without knowing that Mel's mentrual(?) blood smokes and burns.
Nathan Martin
175. lerris
Two observations by Leigh which are completely off target:
I tend to doubt it, if for no other reason than I refuse to accept a death curse that kills off Robb Stark but spares fucking Joffrey as legit
Of course, there is one place in this chapter where the otherwise awesome Davos has an epic fail, and that of course is his decision to ignore the letter from the Night
Chris Nelly
176. Aeryl
Plus, how much longer til the PW, cuz I'm enjoying watching her fits over how Joff hasn't bought it yet. I'll be sad when they are over.
Zorila Desufnoc Eht
177. AlirozTheConfused
Apologies for my opinions.
178. edsmedia
I was disappointed and confused that on the show, Mel didn't say more clearly that the purpose of the blood sacrifice (Gendry, there, not Edric Storm) is to bring the stone dragons at Dragonstone to life. It fits so well with her character, and answers clearly why she wants to kill the golden goose, so to speak, rather than just taking out enemies one-by-one with more leeches: Because dragons. Any thoughts on why not bring this in?
Chris Nelly
179. Aeryl
I don't hate Ned, I dislike him more, as we've learned more about him. I REALLY DISLIKE Brandon.

And Jorah hired a prostitute to act out his deviant fantasies about Dany on. (Tyrion's not much better at this point, but his is at least understandable)
Adam S.
180. MDNY
Aliroz why read the books and the readalong if you think GRRM is a hack? I think you're confused (ba-dum-bum).
This chapter is almost impossible for us to comment on without spoilers, IMHO, because of all the alusions to azor ahai etc. Plus, she interpreted it as an epic fail by Davos, when we know it wasn't.
Aeryl- I agree that ADWD is pretty good. I think the problems people have with it stem from the fact that GRRM meant to write a longer book for book 4, but instead had Feast for Crows and Dance with Dragons cover much of the same time period, so we end up going back in time and hear about events in the past from other characters' perspectives in the present. Which did annoy me a bit, but I got over it. You're in for a couple big things in ADWD still, and it ends with a complete shocker. I'd say the epilogues to both ASOS and ADWD totally change how I view some large elements of the story.
Adam S.
181. MDNY
Damn double posted. Oops.
Marie Veek
182. SlackerSpice
@174: Smokes and burns? Talk about Ew Central.
183. Jeff R.
So, heroes reborn in the sea...I'm thinking about Tyrion right now, and the fact that his not getting Grayscale is quite possibly leading to him seriously thinking about the A+J=T theory.

Although that could also have something to do with Jon's more-or-less inevitable ressurection as well.

(I don't like the 'Dothraki Sea' interpretation, since that leads more naturally to the idea that Azor Ahai and the Stallion that Mounts the World were prophesies about the same person and, accordingly, the world is now deeply screwed.)
Chris Nelly
184. Aeryl
@178, Playing coy is my best guess. I don't think they want to give away that Mel is trying to fulfill prophecies already done by Dany. It takes away from her omniscient position the show has given her.

@182, INORITE! The part isn't real clear, but it's while she's looking in the flames, its says the blood running down her thigh smoked and burned. So I am assuming menstrual, but maybe there's a blood sarcifice I missed in that scene.
Chris Nelly
186. Aeryl
Now that I see that it's the "know" I can see the problem. I put it that way, not because it's actually true or confirmed, but more because the books want you to feel that way.

I'm not explaining myself well, but I do try to comment based on how I felt reading these the first time, and at this point, I was convinced Dany was Azor Ahai. So my "know" is based on the "knowledge" I had as a first time reader.
Chris Nelly
187. Aeryl
@185, That's my guess, but DAMN!! That's a hell of a trade off. All the new followers of R'hllor in ADWD are real interesting, especially Moqhorro.
George Jong
188. IndependentGeorge
@173 - Only if she believes it - which I didn't, when I read it. Ever since Bran/Rickon, I've become very skeptical of GRRM's supposed deaths. I admit that I was (probably) fooled about Sandor, but I didn't believe Davos or Brienne were dead for a second, and I don't believe it now for either Jon or Stannis.
Marie Veek
189. SlackerSpice
You know, all this talk of prophecies makes me think of this line from the webcomic Digger: "Oh, prophecies. Meh. You can get a prophecy to say any damn thing you want. Nothing good ever comes of mucking around with prophecies. People start losing their minds and start pulling idiotic stunts to self-fulfil the things. Tell them they'll die tomorrow, and they'll j ump off a cliff to make sure."

And how wonderfully it sums up Cersei's reaction to Maggy the Frog's prophecy.
Deana Whitney
190. Braid_Tug
Ugh... was hoping for two chapters. oh well, life moves on.

So Leigh's going to be thrilled that Davos makes it to the end of the next three books!
Marie Veek
191. SlackerSpice
@190: Then again, the next few chapters are pretty whammy.

Jon VII: The wildlings attack, and Ygritte dies.

Bran IV: Coldhands

Daenerys V: Arstan is outed as Ser Barristan, and Dany learns about Jorah spying on her for Robert.

After that, it's on to the Purple Wedding.
George Jong
192. IndependentGeorge
@191 - even within the Purple Wedding there another reveal embedded within it - that Joffrey sent the assassin after Bran. Then it's Sansa's escape, Jaime's return to King's Landing, Davos saving Edric, Jon taking command... a metric crapload of stuff happens. I'm really looking forward to Leigh's reaction to pretty much all of it.

The hard part is that the Purple Wedding is likely to be delayed a week for July 4th. Which is actually too bad for Leigh, because I can't think of a better way to kick off a holiday weekend than with "It's, kof, the pie, noth-kof, pie.."
Rob Munnelly
193. RobMRobM
In main post, Fiddler guessed that Jaquen killed Balon - that's doubtful, especially as he (based on physical description) ends up in Oldtown in FFC. Other faceless man or woman FTW.

Aliroz - FYI, I profoundly disagree with your GRRM is a hack thing you've had going for quite a few posts. I'm not going to debate it but I'm just not seeing it. He's a craftsman and I like both the detail work and the superstructure.
Sydo Zandstra
194. Fiddler
I know, Rob.

I also know there is enough time for him to get from the Iron Islands to Oldtown.

I just found the Balor just falling from a bridge because of Melisandre alone too convenient. Note that in the red and Purple weddings, other people were instrumental too...
Scott Silver
195. hihosilver28
Aeryl, I'd like to get into a discussion with you once you finish ADWD. I thought the first half was horribly slow, and the rest I can't discuss until you finish the book. Anyway, I loved all the Stark chapters in the book and little else. Well, Cersei too.

But I still think it's the weakest of the five books.
Marie Veek
196. SlackerSpice
@192: Good point.

Makes me wonder, though, if certain revelations will get lost in the meantime, considering the whole "the Freys desecrated the shit out of Robb and Catelyn's corpse" thing didn't even get a mention.
Chris Nelly
197. Aeryl
It's definitely a Faceless Man, but there are more than just Jaqen.

Then again, based on Arya's chapters, maybe's there isn't, and to become a full fledged assasin she has to kill who she's replacing?
Chris Nelly
198. Aeryl
@hiho, Well I got it in the mail Monday afternoon, and I'm on page 666(heh) at this point(and I don't take it to work), so I don't think I can go with "slow". LOL
Scott Silver
199. hihosilver28
Haha, well, I guess I won't have to wait long to discuss it. You're right at the point that the storylines from AFFC converge. Cool. That's when I started liking the book.

George Jong
200. IndependentGeorge
@194 - The woods witch's vision is very suggestive of a Faceless Man killing Balon (probably at Euron's order), but Jaqen isn't the only Faceless Man in the world. Since he'd been exiled to Essos, it's much more likely that Euron stopped in Braavos, made his offering (one plausible theory is that he gave a dragon egg), and then offered Balon's name.

Then again, based on Arya's chapters, maybe's there isn't, and to become a full fledged assasin she has to kill who she's replacing?
I don't understand - where are you getting this from? She's met several Faceless Men in the temple, and is off to apprentice with another one. The kindly man tells her a story that explicitly tells how the first FM recruited another into the ranks. Where are you getting that she has to kill her predecessor? That makes it mathematically inpossible to expand your ranks or replace your losses.
Scott Silver
201. hihosilver28
@Independent George
Where on earth would Euron get a dragon's egg? I know he found the horn...was it somewhere in Valyria? I can't remember. I'm guessing you're saying he found an egg there too?
Sydo Zandstra
202. Fiddler
hiho @ 199:


That doesn't beat the whole Penny thing or Dany going all mushy over Daario... In fact, I skipped over most of the Dany storyline in my recent reread, although I did read the Barristan Selmy stuff...

AFAIC, Dany stays away from Westeros... (I know, one can dream ;) )

George @200:

Jaquen is the one nearest, and Euron had to sail all the way back. ;)
I know I have no proof, but you haven't convinced me :)
Chris Nelly
203. Aeryl
It's been awhile since I've read AFFC, so all I remember are the two people in the temple training Arya, the old man and the little girl who makes potions.

I'm liking Dany's story, as brooding as it is. Loved Davos story, I'm enjoying Theon's chapters, which are very interesting. Tyrion's getting a bit annoying, but I'm trying to have sympathy.

It's a big exposition dump, throwing lots of tantalizing hints out, most of which I've already forgotten.

For instance, it's been confirmed MANY times that Lyanna was a skilled horse rider, half horse it's stated. And Roose Bolton says that you have to be a good rider, to be a good jouster. Which lends credence to the KotLT rumor. Plus, I like the hints pointing to corrupt maesters, treachery, and southron/northern alliances.

Jon's story is pretty cool, I like how he's keeping his eye on the prize. Which is why what happens later is infuriating.
Knowing already that Quentyn Martell dies, I can see why people were irritated by his chapters, time could be better spent with the Martells, or with Young Griff.
tayyab saeed
204. skyhawkafm
Regarding latest re-read and Azhor Ahai I still believe that its gonna be john not Dany. first is getting reborn in sea. I believe it was jon who got renamed aka reborn on sea after Ned recovered him from castle by the sea from Lynna's deaath bed. And i seriously believe that John is gonna literally awake stone dragons.
I have a gut feeling that his probable warging into Ghost at the end of ADWD is not just a plot twist but its gonna help him achieve his Azhor Ahainess.
his guilt over ygritte's death also draws a nice parallel with Azhor Ahai killing his wife
205. Black Dread
I'm guessing reading pace will pick up when Leigh finally finishes the Wheel of Time but that is probably 3 months away.
Chris Nelly
206. Aeryl
My next ADWD Update!

So I find the irony that Jorah now has a slave brand on his face somewhat delicious, BUT I'm familiar enough with GRRM's MO to know that this is just to set him up for his chance at redemption(all despised characters get this, Jaime, Theon, now Cersei and Jorah). So we'll see.
Adam S.
207. MDNY
Aeryl- when did redemption come for Joffrey, Balon, or Gregor? Plus, while Cersei has some shit happening to her, I have still never felt real empathy for her. She has not yet reached the ultimate low that will inevitably come, and IMHO she deserves every ill that befalls her, and I doubt she will be "redeemed". No redemption for some characters- those I listed above, and probably Littlefinger as well.
And yes, Jorah getting branded was perfect cosmic irony (or GRRM irony, which amounts to the same thing). Yet he won't stop trying to get to Dany. At least the guy is persistent.
Chris Nelly
208. Aeryl
That is a point, but IMO, Joff and Gregor were pawns not players. And Balon had his chance, and blew it when his son came home.

And I'm not suggesting that they GET redeemed. They are offered a CHANCE to be redeemed, by reaching the lowest point possible for them, and climbing out of it. I fully expect Cersei to pass hers by, and probably Jorah too.
Deana Whitney
209. Braid_Tug
@205, Black Dread - WOT, uhm... no. She's only going 1 chapter at a time on that one too currently. So it's on Chapter 17 of 49 chapters.

Chapter 37, "The Last Battle" is going to take 3-4 posts, depending on how she needs to group it.
She’s savoring it like a fine wine and is in no rush. At this point a few of us are wondering if it’s going to stretch into 2014.

I’m sort of wondering how the Purple Wedding chapters will fall out. Since it just stretches. Guess it would be nice if Tyrion’s night with Shae and the gift one week. Followed by the “lovey” feast and Sanas’ escape. Any way is good however, so let's not encourage anything.
Scott Silver
210. hihosilver28
Aeryl, I think it's interesting how knowing the ends of certain storylines has affected your read. Especially with regards to Quentyn, whose is completely pointless. Jeez, what a waste of time. Anyway, hope that now the stories from AFFC have converged, you're enjoying all of that.
Adam S.
211. MDNY
Braid_Tug: She's going to have SO MUCH to say after the Purple Wedding, mostly I predict 3 pages of her snoopy dancing. And then she'll have a whole boatload to say after Sansa's "escape", with the revelation of a bit more about Littlefinger's skeeviness. Both those chapters are a huge amount of commentary, especially the wedding. I'm not suggesting altering the chapter read layout, just predicting that she would probably stop after the PW just because there will be so many things (and so much celebrating) she has to say about it.
Jeremy Morton
212. Raistlan
"a hero reborn in the sea" -- This stuck out at me, will Jon get back out of Ghost and back into a human body, in the literal sea? That might imply that it takes a little while for at least Ghost to get there, if not for Jon's body to get to the sea, if he does get back into his own body.
Peter Stone
213. Peter1742
Quentyn only got a handful of chapters, and I don't think you can say whether they were pointless until we've read TWoW. I can think of two or three possible things they might have been essential set-up for.
Faiz Imam
214. FaizImam
Such as?

Im curious, i've never heard any speculation on that subject.
Chris Nelly
215. Aeryl
My opinon, now that I'm finished, is that Quentyn had to have a POV, or no one would hae even considered that he COULD be one of the riders.

It was a fake out, in other words, and not a very good one, IMO. No one wants that, they want other chracters they've cared about longer to be the riders, so it pissed readers off.

There are some things he got rolling that could play out interestingly, like giving Pentos to the Tattered Prince.

I'm curious what will happen when Dany gets to Volantis. I considered the possibility that there could be a time skip after ADWD, but there were too many cliffhangers.

I never considered Mirri Miraz Durr's statement about Drogo to be a prophecy of any kind, but I have to say MAYBE, now.

When the sun rises in the west: Dorne rebels


When the SON rises in the west: Aegon emerges

And sets in the east: Quentyn dies in Mereen

when the seas go dry: Dothraki sea is already dry

Mountains blow in the wind: this one I'm not positive, but the Mountain is "alive" so I wonder if it has to do with him.

Dany's menstruation at the end of ADWD has me curious.

Having now met Ser Robert Strong, in re to the earlier discussion about resurrection, was it ever mentioned that Beric still needed to eat, or move his bowels?
Bill Stusser
216. billiam
Many people believe, myself included, that the blood was Dany having a miscarriage from eating the poison berries.

I liked the Quentyn chapters and think his death will be important in some way. The reason ADwD took so long to write was that GRRM couldn't decide on when would be the best time for Quentyn to get to Dany, ie: before, during, or after her wedding to Hoozit. The only way for him to figure out which was best for the story was to write the whole thing out for all three different arrivals. I can't see him spending that much time on an event that isn't important in some way.

As to a time skip, remember, GRRM meant for there to be a five year skip after ASoS. From what I understand, a lot of both AFfC and ADwD was supossed to happen during that five year period. GRRM decided to write it out instead of telling it all through backstory.
Rob Munnelly
217. RobMRobM
Also in the Dany miscarriage camp.

Also in the liking Quentyn chapters camp. Interesting riff on the classic fantasy tale - young prince seeks to meet destiny by marrying gorgeous princess...and it all goes to hell. They key point is it reinforces the Dorne long game alliance with the Targs to take back over and get revenge for Elia murder. Now all the eggs are in the Ariane basket and that basket is going to be heading in the direction of Aegon. Will it work or will it crash even worse? (Crash!!!)

Aeryl - have you solved the mystery of the missing Freys yet? And did you get GRRM's football joke up at the Wall?
Zorila Desufnoc Eht
218. AlirozTheConfused
Rhaegar nobly cheated on his wife, Rhaegar valiantly abandoned his children, Rhaegar bravely seduced a fourteen year old girl. And everyone died.
Chris Nelly
219. Aeryl
@ RobMRob Yes, and it's a good thing Manderly's kids got to him, because he was dying to tell everyone. Heh.

There were a lot of jokes, which one are you referring to?

A miscarriage is a possibility. Now I join the rest of you in the agony of THE WAIT.
Rob Munnelly
220. RobMRobM
Knight with a blue star on his shield (Dallas insignia) killed by a Giant. NFC East rivalry makes it to Westeros.
221. Jeff R.
Remember that MMD just said that she wouldn't ever have another live birth (other than in concurrance with all of the other conditions, which, mind, includes a reunion with Drogo. So even if it does turn out to be all-fulfilled misdirection and metaphor, best case here is probably Dany dying in childbirth. Or possibly during childbirth, with another cause of death but the baby surviving.), so neither menstruation nor a miscarriage do anything to invalidate it.
Deana Whitney
222. Braid_Tug
Re: Dany's menstruation / miscarriage
How long has it been storywise since she gave birth?
A woman can go almost a year after giving birth and not restart her menstruations. Normally breastfeeding is one cause, extreme stress might be another.

Is there a "Calendar of Events" timeline for GRRM? I didn't see a useful one for the books on the Tower of the Hand.
Adam S.
227. MDNY
I can't post the link, but if you go to the Wiki of Ice and Fire Forums page, look up "Timeline" you'll find a link to a really good one, with events of the books (does not include the prequel events about Dunk and Egg). A couple of the placements in the timeline are questionable, but overall it is pretty good.
Jakub Wrobel
228. ptyx
When Dany bleeds, she thinks it is menstruation and recalls not having it for some time, I don't remember now - two or three months.
Hence all the miscarriage theory.
Chris Nelly
229. Aeryl
But her vision of Quaithe links it to when she locked her dragons up, but that may have been the dehydration talking.
Rob Munnelly
230. RobMRobM
Re the discussion in the Mhysa thread. Yes, I believe that Aegon is not a real Targ (that is ruled out in the House of Undying Prophecy - Dany slaying the Mummer's dragon and "slayer of lies"). I do believe Aegon has ties to the royal family, and it would work to have Ashara be pregnant and have a baby and then have baby either given up to Varys or taken from her - leading to her suicide. I personally like the theory that Ned is the father (qua Harrenhall) but Westeros folk believe that Ned was too shy and honor bound to do the deed beyond some harmless flirting - but that Brandon was precisely the type of red blooded, physically minded guy who would step in and turn the relationship physical (as he did with Lady Dustin). Westeros folk believe this interpretation is supported by Selmy's POV in ADWD.
Chris Nelly
231. Aeryl
@Rob, it's interesting that all we see of Aegon is through other's eyes, just like the other contenders. That leads me to think he's not as important as Connington and others think he is.
Rob Munnelly
232. RobMRobM
@231 - Aegon will do things in Westeros, the Martells will ally themselves with him through Ariane, and then Dany will unmask him/them after Dany comes on the scene, just as she'll do with Stannis when she gets to the Wall afterwards.
George Jong
233. IndependentGeorge
Completely random question:

Does anybody else immediately think about Ann Veal in Arrested Development whenever 'Egg' gets mentioned now in ASOIAF?
Scott Silver
234. hihosilver28

Well, now that you've finished it, how does it stack up with the rest of the series for you? I loved all of the Stark chapters, and all of the Greyjoy ones, but little else. The ending to the Meereen arc especially frustrated me. It would be like Tolkien ending The Return of the King right as the catapults throw the first stones in the Battle of Pelennor Fields. Anyway, it had good moments, but I thought it was the most uneven of all the books.
Adam S.
235. MDNY
hihosilver- I agree ADWD was uneven, but so was AFFC, remember that AFFC plus most of ADWD was supposed to originally be one book, but GRRM published AFFC before he was ready with the next ASOIAF book because he had taken so long to publish anything. And come on, the ending to ADWD was awesome, with Varys and his little birds emerging to kill probably the most noble Lannister in the series. I also liked several of the Meereen chapters, because I like Barristan and especially Belwas, and I enjoyed seeing Dany finally tip over the edge into outright madness, which she has been threatening to do since GOT.
Scott Silver
236. hihosilver28
MDNY- I actually really liked AFFC, surprisingly and I feel that it is more coherent than ADWD, but I digress.

Completely agree with you re: the Epilogue. That was epic and completely unexpected. I also really enjoy Barristan and Belwas, but he stopped the story right before the climax. I normally don't mind longer waiting periods for books, but denying a climax when other stuff in the book could be cut to make room for it just aggravated me.
George Jong
237. IndependentGeorge
In retrospect, I think FFC is far superior to DWD. The main reasons people reacted so poorly to it were (1) the lack of favorites like Tyrion, Dany, or Jon Snow, in order to (2) spend all that time with the Greyjoys and Martells. It has a major structural flaw in opening with Damphair and Areo Hotah - characters whom readers know nothing of at the start (and who remain uninteresting even after getting to know them). It very easily could have opened with someone we're already invested in (Brienne), or by picking up right where SOS had left off, from a new perspective (Cersei).

Nevertheless, on its own merits, FFC is much better written and structured than DWD, if overlong. Ultimately, I think both books would have been much improved by trimming by about 1/3. The Iron Islands and Meereen chapters in particular just dragged on forever.
Chris Nelly
238. Aeryl
I liked it a lot more than AFFC, mainly because my favorites were in it. While I understand why GRRM split the characters the way he did, I think the books would have been better served to have Tyrion's story still in AFFC, so we would be seeing the effects of Dany's story, without knowing what she was doing.

The epilogue was awesome, can't wait to see more. I LIKE the cliffhanger ending for Mereen, I think it works for the story, but I can get why it ticks people off.
239. Maac
It really does start to feel like the Ironborn are participating in an entirely different world/series of novels, sometimes, epsecially in DWD.
Rob Munnelly
241. RobMRobM
I like ADWD better than AFFC and ACOK. Love all the plot lines in the North and above the Wall (Jon, Bran, Asha, Stannis, Alys Karstark, etc.). Love our little smidgen of Arya in Braavos. Love the Jon Con/Aegon plotting and attack on Westeros. Love the unsuccessful Quentyn love adventure plot. (The Frog actually was a Prince but, instead of a happy ending, went splat.) Like the Tyrion/Jorah arc but was disappointed with its premature ending before meeting up with Dany. Liked the Barristan portions of Dany's arc plus the ending but the rest dragged. The Victarion arc was creepy, intentionally so. Like the final portions of the KL plotlines but, like the above, love the Varys ending.

ADWD is the last bit of the mid-game. Pieces are in place and from here we should see quick movement towards the big finales.
George Jong
242. IndependentGeorge
ADWD is the last bit of the mid-game. Pieces are in place and from here we should see quick movement towards the big finales.
That's just it, though - mid-game should not take up 1,500+ pages. Between FFC and DWD, we spent over a thousand pages of doing nothing but setting the stage for Act II. Much of is was wonderful, but a very large portion of it was little more than world-building (and, in the case of the Iron Islands and Meereen, not an especially interesting world).

Most of the Iron Islands, Meereen, and Dorne could (and should) have been cut. Victarion's chapters are largely necessary, but building a POV around a man famed for his utter lack of imagination makes for difficult reading, to say the least. Between Victarion and Areo Hotah, we are stuck watching what should be interesting developments from two of the least interesting people in the world.

I liked the Dornish chapters more than most, but it really should have been limited to Arianne's POVs. Instead of watching the gradual realization of just what her amateurish plotting have ensnared her in, we get fifty pages of Ser Arys obsessing over her nipples.

Compared to the intrigues in King's Landing, Meereen is a cheap knockoff ("It's the best scheme on the mountain!"). Instead of Varys, Littlefinger, Olenna, Tyrion, and Tywin, we have... the Shavepate and Green Grace. How long do you think any of them would have lasted in King's Landing?
Chris Nelly
243. Aeryl
Mereen was necessary. Dany had to earn the knowledge that change cannot be imposed from the top, but must be inspired from the bottom.

I liked Victarion's chapters, he's boring with no imagination, but they got me anticipating his arrival in Mereen("Oh, you're hear to marry me and take my dragons? Dracarys") with a fleet that can get Dany back to Westeros.

The only thing that's bothering me, is how are we going to have time for Dany to free all the slaves in Volantis, which is what the Widow told Tyrion she wants, and get to Westeros in TWO BOOKS?

I just don't see it being done in the next two, I don't care what GRRM says, not without cutting some stories short.

Which may be the plan, for all I know.
David Goodhart
244. Davyd
Blurgh. And yes, I’m sure the anticlimacticalness of it all is probably making an anti-trope point, because as I’ve noted innumerable times before, bucking your silly bourgeois narrative convention thingys is pretty much Martin’s bag. But, dude. You can’t throw me one frickin’ bone here?
Heh, you know nothing, Leigh Butler.

Actually, she kind of hit the nail on the head re: more angst for Jon, as I remember thinking something similar my first time through. I'm glad Jon got his groove back in the coming chapters during the attack on the Wall. That should be fun.
Chris Nelly
245. Aeryl
With how often "words are wind" is said OVER and OVER again, I'm guessing Book 6, Winds of Winter, is going to be a TALKY book.
Scott Silver
246. hihosilver28
I actually loved all of the Greyjoy chapters, including Victarion. He's actually my favorite new character. And all the Reek and Asha chapters were cool as well.

I just hated wasting time with Quentyn. Arianne is interesting and so is Doran.
Chris Nelly
247. Aeryl
The pacing and the scattered nature of the story never really bothers me, but that's because I remain in awe of how Martin has used the POV chapters to move this story. I write, and I cannot begin to wrap my head around trying to plot a story using these various POVs in this way.
Faiz Imam
248. FaizImam
To the powers that be, It should be noted(and perhaps communicated) that the next 2 chapters to come are meaty and good of analysable material, but they are followed by 1 tiny one with nothing going on nor to talk about.

So it can be done with the one previous to it, whenever that may be.
Marty Beck
250. martytargaryen
Aeryl @247 - I agree completely! I'm trying to use ASoIAF, and how Martin uses PoV compared to Robert Jordan's as a way of teaching my teenage son about writing styles. It is mind-blowing at times how he uses the concept of "unreliable narrator" to throw the reader off in a first-time read.
251. MjF
martytargaryen @250 - Would you mind giving some examples?
Rob Munnelly
252. RobMRobM
@251 Look at almost any Mat chapter. All sorts of things happen around him that he misses. I recall one in Crown of Swords where someone mentions something about honor and Avienda turns nearly purple with embarassment (because of her unacknowledged love for another character) and Mat has no idea that anything has gone on. Avi knows and we know (because we've spent time in Avi's head) but Mat is clueless.
Adam S.
253. MDNY
@250-252 : I agree that Mat is unreliable, but that's not so much as a narrator as it is being oblivious to most of the world around him (unless it involves women, war, gambling, or money).
If you want to look for unreliable narrators in ASOIAF, just look at Sansa. We haven't reached her most blatant example yet, but late in ASOS Sansa remembers the hound kissing her, which never happened. Having read that, combined with her "forgetting" what happened when Nymeria attacked Joffrey, made me immediately question everything she says or thinks for the rest of the series. Most of the other narrators are at least somewhat unreliable, or at least uneven in their reliability, with their viewpoints colored by their own allegiances and beliefs, but Sansa remains the most blatant.
Marty Beck
254. martytargaryen
Excellent example; thanks Rob. My favorite examples are during the Rand/LTT voice scenes. If you compare what Rand experiences versus how others (especially non-duopotamians), it's a real hoot.

Getting back to Martin, I see his PoV being even stricter. Where a passive first-time reader like myself will probably pick up on the the (more or less) objective reality of the situation in RJ's work, it is not often the case with GRRM. He does not throw any bones to the reader with hints.

I am struggling putting any examples to words, so I will borrow from a fantastic post by "KittyKatKnits":
The Death of Lady: In Ned’s chapter, we see Sansa claim not to remember the events that led to Joffrey being attacked and Cersei calling for the death of Lady shortly thereafter. If we go by this chapter alone, it appears that Sansa is responsible for the death of Lady. Later, we even learn that Sansa blames Arya for getting Lady killed. But, neither of these interpretations are the correct one. Later in GOT, Ned talks with Robert who admits that he should have behaved differently and that he capitulated to Cersei. Yet, it is not until three books later during a Jaime chapter in Feast that we learn the rest of the story. Robert and Cersei had been up the night before arguing until Robert passed out in to a drunken slumber. Cersei was out for blood and seizing an opportunity to kill a wolf. Robert, unwilling to stand up to Cersei, chose to let it happen.
Marty Beck
255. martytargaryen
MDNY - THANK YOU! I was totally drawing a blank, but that was exactly what I was thinking (at some point).
Sky Thibedeau
256. SkylarkThibedeau
Is anyone else playing the GOT beta on facebook. It's been fun reliving the Books and the series thru the eyes of Cousin Kirth and Derryk Snow.
George Jong
257. IndependentGeorge
After Sansa, I think the 2nd most unreliable narrator is Dany. One of the interesting things I found in DWD was the way Tyrion immediately sees through Brown Ben Plumm, whereas Dany has completely bought into his 'kindly uncle' act (not to be confused with a "funny" uncle).
Adam S.
258. MDNY
One thing that I don't recall ever being brought up: I always thought that part of Robb's bad decision to marry a non-Frey, betraying his agreement and leading to his and Cat's deaths (and others), was his fierce determination not to father any bastards. And this, in part, comes from Catelyn's hatred of bastards and poor treatment of Jon Snow, who she believes to be Ned's. As most people, myself included, believe R+L=J, you could look at Ned's decision to conceal Jon's parentage as in some ways leading to Robb and Cat's deaths. Not sure that Robb wouldn't have married Jeyne Westerling, but there's a chance he would not have if he hadn't seen Cat's hatred of bastards, and decided that he could not honorably leave the potential for one. So looked at in a certain light, Ned's promise to a dying Lyanna, while protecting Jon, may have contributed to Robb and Cat dying.
Adam S.
259. MDNY
@257 - I agree that Dany is unreliable, but then again she has always been on the razor's edge in terms of madness (and over that edge by the end of ADWD). As for Brown Ben Plumm, I think the fact that the dragons like him is her biggest reason for trusting him, and given what she's been through, trusting her dragons doesn't seem so stupid.
Chris Nelly
260. Aeryl
I don't agree that Dany's an unreliable narrator. That implies self-deluded, and I don't think that applies. I think she's naive, which is why she trusts Brown Ben, not because she's determined to find things that aren't there.

And I also don't accept that her mental status at the end of ADWD is permanent, or indicative of any inherent madness. She's dehydrated, starving and ill. That's enough to throw anyone for a loop. In my mind, she has the most clarity at that time, finally able to see what she's done to herself, her dragons, and Mereen.
Marty Beck
261. martytargaryen
When did we learn that The Wall possessed magical wards against the White Walkers? It has not been mentioned in The Show, and I am wondering if they are holding off or if we just haven't gotten there yet.

It is interesting reading the unbooked show-watchers anticipating the WW invasion south, knowing they don't realize this important fact.
Chris Nelly
262. Aeryl
@261, I don't remember that at all, so I can't help you. I didn't know there was anything magical about the Wall, aside from it's construction.
263. Jeff R.
There are a lot of alternate paths out there, and I've been trying to work out what would have happened differently if Catelyn had been able to get over resenting Jon (either by having been told the truth about him or simply on her own)

Leaving aside bad consequences on the Wall for the moment, I think that the endgame here is for Robb to get Jon some land somewhere and have him found another cadet line for the Starks. I think that under those circumstances matching him with Lady Hornwood would have been irresistably appealing.

(From there, I suspect Walder Frey would have been tasteless enough to want to include 'Jon takes a Frey wife when Donella dies' the bargain...)

Next question: how do things go if Theon sacks Wintefell, wrecks the main gate but leaves the rest standing, and immediately heads back to shore with his hostages?
George Jong
264. IndependentGeorge
@260 - but the naivte itself makes her an unreliable narrator.

@261 - I don't know that it was ever stated explicitly, but Melisandre tells Jon that the Wall is one of the great magical nexi in the world towards the end of SOS, and in FFC, the old child of the forest (very odd sentence construction that is) tells Bran that Coldhands can't enter the cave because it's warded against him.
Chris Nelly
265. Aeryl
I don't know, I feel Sansa's unreliable narrator because she constructs false stories around her experiences, than mislead or confuse the reader. Dany doesn't do that. She misreads situations and motives, but we all do that. That doesn't mean she's lying to herself.

If we are using "unreliable narrator" to mean not omniescent, well they all are. Cersei is another example. There are instances when she's unreliable, because she lies about her experiences, and other instances because she's ignorant and conveys incorrect information. I don't think the definition of "unreliable narrator" is meant to cover both instances.
Adam S.
266. MDNY
Aeryl, I think one of GRRM's core tenets in this series is that nothing anyone says or thinks can be taken without a grain of salt, especially for certain characters. Sansa is obviously delusional, and much of what she says or thinks is not trustworthy. Cersei becomes increasingly unreliable as the series progresses, especially next book when she becomes a female Robert. We aren't always in characters' heads when they are unreliable, but sometimes we are. The bottom line is you have to draw conclusions based on multiple sources whenever possible, and try to construct the rest based on available "facts" and how reliable they are, as well as what possible motives someone might have for stating something as "fact". Yes, they are all potentially unreliable narrators, but some are pretty reliable (Barristan Selmy, Ned Stark, Jon Snow...)
Chris Nelly
267. Aeryl
MDNY, I definitely agree with that. I just feel there's a distinction to be made from delusional to ignorant, with unreliable being more delusional. I guess "uninformed narrator" is more of what I'm going for when I think about Dany.
Chris Nelly
268. Aeryl
@martytargaryean, I guess today's chapter is the one you are referring to, but I'll admit I never took the fact that this ONE passage needed a NW brother to egress and that Coldhands couldn't go through it to be an indication that they can't get past the entire wall.
Adam S.
269. MDNY
I have a question. If Mance Rayder hadn't dug up all those corpses looking for the horn, would the WW have emerged at all? Cause if not, then this whole problem is his fault. If so, then where the hell were they hiding for 8000 years?
Chris Nelly
270. Aeryl
I don't think they were hiding, they were obviously preying on the wildlings, and SOMEONE's been taking Craster's sons all these years. I think they hibernate for extended periods, and the years long "winters" happen when they are awake, but they were not in force enough to invade.

But your observation is very true, SOMETHING changed to spark the invasion, and Raydar's excavations could be it.
Chris Nelly
271. Aeryl
And speaking of the horn, does Sam still have it? Or did he give it to Jon before he left the Wall?
Adam S.
272. MDNY
Melisandre burned it, didn't she?
Matt Spencer
273. Iarvin
To the mod -post 25 on the main thread for this week ends with some rather unsubtle hints that something bad to someone bad is coming up. . .
George Jong
275. IndependentGeorge
@271, @272 - Melisandre burned the huge aurochs horn that Mance claimed was the Horn of Winter. Sam still has the horn that Ghost dug up with the obsidian daggers and arrowheads.
Marty Beck
276. martytargaryen
@268 - I think I must have extrapolated to the logical conclusion that The Wall was designed to be both a physical and magical (mystical?) barrier. Guess we'll just have to RAFO.

Thanks for the responses
Adam S.
277. MDNY
I never thought that was the Horn of Winter, though I know some people do. Either way, that horn was broken, so it couldn't work. But yes, Sam still had that horn with him after paying for the ship from Braavos. It could be important, or even the tru Horn, but I always believed that if either was the real one, Mance had it.
Adam S.
278. MDNY
Double posted
Chris Nelly
279. Aeryl
Oh, that horn's a gun on the mantle in the first act. These books will end with the Wall coming down, I'd bet money on it!
George Jong
280. IndependentGeorge
@277 - see, I follow the Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade model - if the Horn of Winter exists and plays any role in the story, then the really impressive giant horn with all the runes on it couldn't possibly be it.

@279 - I thought so, too, but the show's complete lack of mention is making me question it on a meta level.
281. Jeff R.
The show skipped both MMD's full curse and the 'three heads' prophecy, but we still think that those are important, don't we?
282. Ryamano
I don't understand one thing about the theory that Coldhands is Ben Stark: wouldn't Bran recognize his uncle?
George Jong
283. IndependentGeorge
@281 - actually, I don't think MMD's curse is all that important, or even a curse at all; she was just saying Dany would never have children again due to the complications of the birth. The three heads prophecy isn't needed, either, seeing as how there are three dragons; it's perfectly logical that the other two would need riders without any of the mystical stuff.

What I'm saying is more in line with Talisa's death effectively killing the popular "Jeyne is secretly pregnant with Robb's child" theory. If it were true, and it had an impact on the story, then the show wouldn't have killed her (and wee baby Ned) off. If the horn were a Chekhov's gun, it probably should have been at least mentioned by now, like the obsidian daggers.

@282 - His face is covered in every description of him. I personally don't think it's Benjen - I think he's just horribly disfigured - but that does lend plausibility to the theory.
284. Ibid
@282: I forget who said it, but someone said that Coldhands "died a very long time ago." As in, probably hundreds of years ago.
285. Jeff R.
I'm talking about the less clear parts of the vision: the three fires, mounts, and treasons that show-Dany apparently isn't on the lookout for.
Chris Nelly
286. Aeryl
@283, IG, the horn was in with the blades when they found it in the show as well, and it took a year to explain the blades importance.
Chris Nelly
287. Aeryl
Who else thinks that all the POV characters are going to meet up at the Wall for the end? They are all pretty well positioned to do it, except for Sansa, but her time is coming.

Arya, as close as she may be to losing herself at the moment, my guess is that she's going to hear about Jon, and that's gonna get her on a boat to Eastwatch.

Bran will probably stay put, but Dany & Tyrion of course will be there. I'm convinced of all people, Brienne will be the one to hook up with Howland Reed on her way North, and learn if R+L=J, and if Jaime survives I'm sure he'll be there. Then again, Jaime has to meet up with Cersei so he can kill her. Of course dragons probably increase your mobility a bit, so Dany and Tyrion could presumably make several trips North and South, without an accompanying army. Davos and Melisandre, along with Asha and Theon, are already there(or nearby). Sam will have a way to travel, but maybe he can teleport.

Who does that leave?

I'm also calling, Cersei, Theon, and ONE of the Stark girls DEAD by the end. I think Asha's gonna find herself a Wildling to marry. :^D I also want HER to be the one who kills Ramsey. Jaime might survive, if he doesn't Brienne might not. It depends if she's with him or not. He'll get her killed if they stick together IMO, no matter how much I like them together.
288. MjF
Aeryl @270 -- I may well be wrong, but I remembered it the other way around: Mance Rayder & co were looking for the Horn and planning to invade the South precisely because the Others had shown up and started killing them off.
Scott Silver
289. hihosilver28
Aeryl, you really think Jaime will kill Cersei? I don't. I think he's grown enough to where he won't help her, but I also can't see him ever actively causing her harm. Even though we all want harm done to her. But I think that's why her part in ADwD was there. She has been brought low, and I don't see her rising again unless Robert Strong does something phenomenal.

SERIOUSLY, George! When are you going to start paying these arcs off?
Chris Nelly
290. Aeryl
@MjF, I would say had risen and were preying on the Wildlings, but Mance in reaction to that, exhumed all the graves, not knowing any better(though they DO NOW!).

Or maybe it's all mystical god driven stuff, and the rose in strength at that moment because Jon had been born and dragons were coming.
291. Ryamano
@287 Aeryl

It's been foreshadowed in the first chapters of AGOT that Arya Stark will be dead in the end. Jon Snow says to her that people will later find her when winter ends with hands frozen cold and holding only a needle in her hand. At that time he was joking with the prospect of her needling, since she hated it. Now needle could mean THE NEEDLE, her sword.

Also, another foreshadowing I caught, was that Stannis Baratheon will take the black. In the meeting he has with Catelyn and Renly he says that he'd prefer to take the black before he did something he didn't want to do (forgot about it, will see later when I get home). Stannis could take the black when he finds out that Dany is alive, has dragons and has come to claim her ancestors' kingdom. Since she's better poised to face the Others than he, he'll do what's right and give up his claim to the throne, for the good of the realm, by taking the black. That'd make him the 1000th Night Watch commander, the one who defeated the Others. This also would go with Melisandre's prophecy that great things are in store for Stannis, just not being Azor Ahai reborn or the prince that was promised.
Faiz Imam
292. FaizImam
Wow, thats some strong stuff.
Never heard any of that before.

I'm not sure about Arya, but that seems spot on for Stannis.
293. Gold for Petyr

No offence but those are both really stupid.

First of the 1000th lord commander isn't a thing. That doesn't mean anything.

If Stannis takes the black, he'd more likely be working for the Others. He is the king with an undead mistress who's seat is the Night Fort, AKA the Night King. T

Jon Snow's comment about Arya being found in the know with her needle may or may not be foreshadowing. Would it surprise anyone if Arya died at somepoint? There's this type foreshadowing for every character.
Chris Nelly
294. Aeryl
@291, But Sansa's dead wolf is even bigger foreshadowing for her death.

I don't see any of the "kings" surviving, and Stannis is the only one left.
tayyab saeed
295. skyhawkafm
Talking about end game...... it feels like that main characters of every kingdom and order are being sorted out in ADWD. Three heads of the dragon look likely to be Dany, Jon and Tyrion. There is ample foreshadowing about JON in the books he supoosedly fulfils the 5000 year old prophey regarding "war for the dawn" and AA reborn. About A+L=T, the greatest indications are Tywin Lannister's last words " you are..... are not son" and it is quite clear that throughout the book (as far as i was able to observe) Tywin asks Tyrion to behvae like a Lynnister not to behave like his son (the way he asks Jamie to act like his son). And there is lot of foreshadowing like him casting a great shadow etc. Further more he is married to Sansa thus further going for "A Song of Ice and Fire theme". I feel that in the end it will be him and Sansa acting as king and queen for all the realm (after Sansa learns the Game of Thrones from littlefinger and defeats him with his own weapons)
tayyab saeed
296. skyhawkafm
tayyab saeed
297. skyhawkafm
Talking about end game...... it feels like that main characters of every kingdom and order are being sorted out in ADWD. Three heads of the dragon look likely to be Dany, Jon and Tyrion. There is ample foreshadowing about JON in the books he supoosedly fulfils the 5000 year old prophey regarding "war for the dawn" and AA reborn. About A+L=T, the greatest indications are Tywin Lannister's last words " you are..... are not son" and it is quite clear that throughout the book (as far as i was able to observe) Tywin asks Tyrion to behvae like a Lynnister not to behave like his son (the way he asks Jamie to act like his son). And there is lot of foreshadowing like him casting a great shadow etc. Further more he is married to Sansa thus further going for "A Song of Ice and Fire theme". I feel that in the end it will be him and Sansa acting as king and queen for all the realm (after Sansa learns the Game of Thrones from littlefinger and defeats him with his own weapons). Similarly Jamie and Theon have moved to important poitions in their arc. as far as i can see only Brienne and Arya are yet to reach their place in the broader picture
Adam S.
298. MDNY
@287 I think, based on Cersei's memories of Maggy the maegi, that Tyrion is the one who will choke her in the end.
@282 Coldhands always covers his face, leading to speculation that he is Benjen. We still haven't seen Benjen, who is probably not dead unless he's undead and still walking around.The other big possibility is Brynden "Bloodraven" Rivers, but I think he is the 3 eyed crow.
Chris Nelly
299. Aeryl
@MDNY, see I think Cersei assuming the valonqar is Tyrion is a huge misdirect, so that's why I'm convinced it's Jaime, the one she never suspects.

Of course, we are just assuming the valonqar is HER little brother. There are several little brothers in this story, Margaery's for one.
Adam S.
300. MDNY
Aeryl- Valonqar is little brother. How can Jaime be her "little" brother? They are twins, Jaime is no one's little brother. Plus, the Maegi said he would "wrap his hands around your pale white throat"- Jaime only has one hand. There is speculation on it being other people (I've read people thinking The Hound or Rickon Stark, for some reason), but I believe it would be her valonqar, and that leaves Tyrion. People are always looking for misdirection, but sometimes the most obvious answer CAN be the right one, especially if you're dismantling common tropes.
Chris Nelly
301. Aeryl
She was born first, that makes Jaime younger. And the one hand, it's been pretty obvious to me, since he got the nonfunctional golden one, that at some point its going magically come alive.
Sky Thibedeau
302. SkylarkThibedeau
Seems to me the Maegi storyline was an afterthought. It seems to come out of left field.

I think Coldhands is the Nightking in old nan's stories.

I hat forgotten about the rat king and the pie. I guess Walder gets his just desserts after all.
Chris Nelly
303. Aeryl
@302, I think it's supposed to establish just why Cersei is so distrustful of Tyrion.

Which is why I find it a delicious thought to imagine the warning was all about Jaime.

I wonder if Leigh will catch Wyman Manderly's Rat King reference at Winterfell?
Adam S.
304. MDNY
I doubt it, she still hasn't figured out who Loras was in love with, and she seemed to mostly dismiss Bran's stories about the nightfort because she was squeeing over Sam's reappearance. Speaking of her catching/missing things, when can we just tell her about Renly-Loras? That's the one thing she missed that's killing me. Her musings on Jon possibly being L's son, amd then grossing herself out because she didn't take it the next step to him NOT being Ned's, just made me laugh. But her still not knowing the Renly-Margaery-Loras love triangle is really hard to suppress comments on in the main thread. End of the book, maybe we can tell her?
Scott Silver
305. hihosilver28
MDNY, if she still doesn't know by the end of the book, I think we should tell her. There's a very blatant line when Jaime is upbraiding Loras when he gets back to King's Landing and that's when all of us think the tumblers are going to click in Leigh's mind.
Jerry Grzeskiewicz
306. SwordOfMidAfternoon
RW on the show hit much, much harder than the book... and the book was painful.

I didn't realize there was controversy over who the man in the pink cape adorned with rubies as blood splatter was.

Roose excuses himself, dons armor, returns, gives Robb the fatal blow and passes along the message Jaimie Lannister specifically gave to him for Robb Stark. Though had Jaimie known what was going down, he most likely would've kept his distance from that whole dis-honorable guest-right-violating fiasco...

FF'ing to AFFC, I still want to know what word it is that Brienne yells that saves her from being hung? Add that to the laundry list of things NOT resolved in A Dance With Dragons.
Chris Nelly
307. Aeryl
Is that Renly/butt line in AFFC or or ASOS? I can't remember.
Chris Nelly
308. Aeryl
@306, Well since she shows up promising Jaime that she's found Sansa, I'm gonna guess the world was "ALRIGHT!!"
Adam S.
309. MDNY
@307 I assume you mean Jaime threatening to sheathe Loras' sword up to where "even Renly never found"? That's in this book, I think in the Jaime chapter when he returns to Kings Landing, coming up in a few weeks- 5 or 6 chapters from now.
Chris Nelly
310. Aeryl
I couldn't remember, Jaime's story bleeds together for me between those two books. Thanks!
Faiz Imam
311. FaizImam
Here is the leigh reading timeline I put together( with the help of some anonymous elves)

The dates are all messed up, but FYI this is what you can look forward to.
Adam S.
312. MDNY
@311 those dates are wrong, no post next week, and we don't know how long this 1 chapter/week thing will last, so it's impossible to predict. However, good reminder of why this book is so awesome, with quite a number of great chapters still to come (I particularly like any Tyrion chapter with the Red Viper, and of course his last chapter with the (non-) gold shit , then Littlefinger sleazing Sansa/killing krazy Lysa, but the battle with the wildings and Lady Stoneheart are sweet too).
Chris Nelly
313. Aeryl
By the end of it, I'm sure she'll figure out why this one is most often the favorite, and that's it's not because we're sadomasachist doom mongers who feed on the tears of the unspoiled(though we are that).

I mean, as terrible as the RW is, the rest of this book is just so full of fist pumping awesomeness, by the end I'm like "Robb who?"
George Jong
314. IndependentGeorge
@304, @305 - No, please no. If Leigh doesn't figure it out, please let's just leave it alone.
Rob Munnelly
315. RobMRobM
@306 - not sure I'm a fan of it, but the answer clearly is "Sword!" She had to either say that - meaning kill Jaime - or hang. No room for other options since Uncat wasn't in the room to hear "Sansa" or "Arya" or "Stannis" or anything else.
Jakub Wrobel
317. ptyx
Because if the secret gets revealed explicitly in book 6 or 7, it will be fun to watch Leigh's reaction then ;)

Re: Brienne' word - yes, it's "Sword", I believe it was confirmed by GRRM himself.
Marie Veek
318. SlackerSpice
@317: I think my issue with this is that I don't quite see it getting any more blatant reveals beyond Jaime's "someplace Renly never found", which she could just as easily take as Jaime being Jaime.
Deana Whitney
319. Braid_Tug
Re: 1 week per chapter.
Let's hope that Dany's is the last one. It's another long one.
Because if she gets to the three page Tyrion chapter and still only gives us a 1 week chapter... ugh.

Re: Loras, part of the problems come from the hints being so spread out. She's having a hard time keeping track of things going on with the main viewpoints. So Renly really is "old and unimportant" to her.

I’m waiting to see if she picks up on the fact that it was Joffery that sent the killer to Bran. Since the only major clue to that is coming up is when Tyrion offers him a the dagger to replace the book. But she may focus on how much Joffery sucks by destroying the book.

This is how I hope the next few weeks play out:
July 11 – Dany
July 18 – Tyrion & Sansa – pre-wedding
July 25 – Tyrion – the Death we have all been waiting for!!!!
Faiz Imam
320. FaizImam
This is why I mentionned it a few posts ago, if she knows the Tyrion one is so short, perhaps she'll tack it to the end of the Dany one.

There's really nothing to it:


Tyrion sneaks to Shae and they have sex while he feels SUPER emo. The end

Analysis: My god that was depressing.
321. Jeff R.
Honestly, I wouldn't be at all surprised if Loras becomes a viewpoint character in Winds. We are currently slap out of political insiders in King's Landing at the moment, after all.
Marie Veek
322. SlackerSpice
@319: Tyrion tries to suss out Joffrey's reasons for trying to have Bran killed in the following chapter, so it might still be fairly fresh.
Rob Munnelly
323. RobMRobM
Jeff - I believe Martin has said no new viewpoint characters in WoW.
Chris Nelly
324. Aeryl
Jeff, isn't Jon Connington en route to KL? Wasn't that part of his offer, that he would come to KL and "swear" fealty to Tommen, to keep them from suspecting about FAegon?

Plus, without Kevan to keep a rein on Cersei, Strong will undoubtedly win her trial by combat, and she'll be back in the mix again, inadvertantly bringing destruction down upon her family.

Though giving Lady Nym a POV would be awesome, as I love the Dornes.
Adam S.
325. MDNY
Based on Braid_Tug's projected schedule @319, July 25 is a day you want to be in New Orleans when Leigh throws the biggest bash in that city's history (and that's saying something) in celebration of Joffrey's death. Of course, Tyrion ends up imprisoned facing Cersei's vengeance, and Sansa ends up with creep Littlefinger next chapter, so she may not be wholly in a party mood, but my guess is she will still be partying as has never been seen before once King Tool is dead.
Deana Whitney
326. Braid_Tug
For those of you who don't follow Leigh's WoT posts, this is what she wrote on Tuesday...
Hi guys, I am very sorry, but due to some ongoing family issues, medical and otherwise, there will be no post this Tuesday, the 2nd. The Re-read will resume next Tuesday, the 9th. I wish all y'all a lovely Fourth of July if you're in the States, and a lovely random week if you're not. Cheers, Leigh
So I'm guessing that is why both her blogs have been getting 1 chapter a week. Send her some positive thoughts! Thanks
Faiz Imam
327. FaizImam
hmm, i donno.

Despite the slight kvetching about 1 chapter a week, they honestly have been quite long and detailed, with decent amounts of analysis.

That comment strikes me as something more short term...

eh, its all fine by me. I'm hoping for 2 chapters next week, given the shortness of the 2nd one, but by no means am I expecting it.
328. Asbjorn
I actually like the one-chapter-per-week plan because it just cause Leigh to write much more to each chapter - and A Storm of Swords definitely deserves this.

After next chapter, there are two chapters where nothing much happens, so I predict these two will be together. After these, we will have the Purple Wedding, and I think from then on, all chapters in A Storm of Swords will be once per week.

Then, when she starts A Feast for Crows, I think she will go back to two-per-week, as they are much more slow.

Also, I think it is likely that Winds of Winter will be out before she finishes Dance with Dragons - especially since she will also read the Dunk & Egg stories. That still leaves a couple of years before A Dream of Spring comes out. Maybe she will use the time to watch and post about the HBO series?
Faiz Imam
329. FaizImam
Double post! WOHOO!

7 days and counting till jubilation!


I hope...
Sudo Nym
330. Shakerag
"Basically it’s not a question of whether this will go badly; it’s only a question of how badly it’s going to go."
I wonder if she'll see what really happens coming at all.
Julian Niquille
331. Gesar
"And also, someone reminded me that “a king with a wolf’s head, at a
banquet” actually showed up in Dany’s prophetical horror-house acid-trip
thingy back in Qaarth or wherever the hell she was at the time."

Repeating myself on that subject, but I'm still agreeing with the fine and smart people over there:
Chris Nelly
332. Aeryl
@330, I have to wonder if what WE think happened, happened.

The show has done this very differently, the relationship between Tyrion, Shae and Sansa, but the kernels of the book story are still there. I think the love Shae had for Tyrion was real, and I don't think she set out to betray him. There was definitely SOMETHING that happened after the wedding feast, to get Shae to turn on Tyrion, and because we later find her with Tywin, we are supposed to assume she did it voluntarily, searching for greater esteem.

But with how the show has done this, this isn't really being left open as a possibility, with the depths of caring and love Tyrion and Shae have demonstrated for one another. So my assumption is that Shae, silly naive thing she can be, figured she'd trade her favors for Tyrion's exile*, and THAT'S why she was with Tywin(though the Hand's Chain makes this part difficult to accept, we have to assume that Varys told Tywin all, and that Tywin's desire to humiliate his son went so far as to have her wear it as well). And it's Tyrion's false assumptions that led to her death, and her protestations of love were true.

GRRM has helped write those scenes with Shae in the show, so as with Robb's potential heir, I am assuming he's taking the opportunity to confirm book speculations, IMO.

*While this is her offer, and it's "accepted" I don't believe for a second Tywin would have held to the deal.
Deana Whitney
333. Braid_Tug
And now Leigh is prepped for the Shae betrayal, but not the form it will take.
And she sure is making a number of “shit” references. But guess Martin does too.

Happy dance for next week if she does two chapters!
Adam S.
334. MDNY
I'm thinking she'll do 2 chapters next week, cause the Sansa pre-wedding chapter is really not much, just a little more lead-up to THE BIG EVENT. Joffrey's death should cause some massive celebrations, though he has been replaced as number one on her hitlist by Walder (fill in amusing Leigh curse here) Frey. Then Tyrion's arrest may cause some headdesking. I predict great confusion from Leigh over the purple wedding, as it is all intentionally confusing (Tyrion pouring the wine out, later him confessing to the murder even though he didn't poison Joff, Sansa's magic hairnet and the role Olenna played in it, etc...).
George Jong
335. IndependentGeorge
@334 - To this day, I still have yet to read a good explanation as to why Tyrion poured the wine out, except to make him look plausibly guilty to readers.
Marty Beck
336. martytargaryen
Aeryl @332 - I've spent a lot of time trying to reconcile the Show's depiction of Shae with what we know will happen between her, Tywin, and Tyrion...and I came to the same conclusion: the Lannisters basically "got to her" and coerced her into betraying Tyrion.

What I am most curious about is how Tywin ends up bedding Shae, and if we can learn his underlying motivation, considering his public attitude toward "whores".
337. Jeff R.
@334 It's been a long time since I've read that part, but my vague impression there is that it was to protect Sansa, who he either thinks is actually guilty or being set up.

And I'm still not willing to completely dismiss the theory that Shae was working directly for Tywin from Day One (and that Bronn was similarly suborned at that same time.)
Adam S.
338. MDNY
@335,337 I agree that Tyrion poured it out to cover for Sansa, who he thought was responsible (and she was, unknowlingly). But he was also pretty damn drunk at the time I believe, and it's surprising that he could have coherently made that conclusion and the resulting plan to protect her in such a short time while drunk. And protecting her at risk to his own life? I don't know if he would go THAT far. He's better than other Lannisters, that doesn't make him selfless.
George Jong
339. IndependentGeorge
@337, 338 - what's frustrating is that it's never explained - he never thinks to himself about why he did it, even during the trial. He just does it because, well, hell if I know.
Chris Nelly
340. Aeryl
Tyrion was doing, because A) he was the better man and B) he knew nothing could make Joffrey look worse, than to allow him to exercise his nastiest tendencies in front of the entire kingdom.

He refused to be degraded by riding the joust, but by now acquescing to Joffrey's demand to be cupbearer, AFTER Joffrey upended his entire goblet of wine in retaliation for Tyrion's jape, he demonstrates that he doesn't hold a grudge, and allows Joffrey to demonstrate again that he does. It takes Tywin to put a stop to it, by diverting him. But Tyrion's making Joffrey look bad, with no consideration with how it will make him look after Joffrey's dead, because he's completely ignorant of it.

What he was doing made perfect sense to me.
Adam S.
341. MDNY
@340 I don't follow. Tyrion poured the wine out after Joff was poisoned, it had nothing to do with demonstrating he holds no grudge or the dwarf jousters. He dumped the evidence out as Joff died. The only reason to do that would be if he thought it would incriminate someone he didn't want incriminated (Sansa, I'm guessing). But we don't get real reasons for that while we're in his head, leading me to suspect his reasoning was a bit off from drinking earlier. It's never really clear, bottom line, and ends up being used to incriminate him.
Adam S.
342. MDNY
Am I the only one who laughed when Leigh complained about spelling Meereen? Too bad for her Dany is stuck there 3 more books...
Peter Stone
343. Peter1742
About Brown Ben Plumm's ancestor with the six-foot long cock ... did nobody catch the punchline of the joke that it's a set-up for?

From Feast for Crows. Cersei is talking with Jaime.
... "I need eyes inside that room," she said.
"To see what?" he said. "There can be no danger of a consummation. Tommen is much too young."
"And Ossifer Plumm was much too dead, but that did not stop him fathering a child, did it?"
Think about it.
344. Bravosi
Ok it's been a while but I thought Tyrion did poison Joffery. He hid the poison in Sansa's headpiece. Someone fill me in.
Rob Munnelly
345. RobMRobM
Peter@343. Wow. That is awesome. Bravo

Leigh once again failed to pick up on the Renly reference buried in the Tyrion chapter - about Brella, formerly of Renly's service, who learned well how to keep her eyes, etc. closed.

Bravosi@344. The headpiece was a gift from the Tyrells and Grandma Oleanna "adjusted" the headpiece - i.e., removed the poisonous one - at the service so she could either drop it in when Marge was safe or could pass it to Marge. Tyrells FTW!

Whether Tyrion poured it out or not is irrelevant. He was in position to be accused in any event. No doubt the Tyrells hoped it would work out that way.

Marty @336. I'm convinced Tywin was the Hand who built the secret tunnel to Chataya's as mentioned in ACOK. He was certainly there long enough. He's a vigorous guy - I can't see him staying celibate for 20 years. He's addicted to whores, and punishes Tyrion for having his own failing.
346. Ibid
@344 -
Nope. Eventually he started *saying* he did it because he was found guilty of it, but he had no part in it. Later Petyr Baelish tells Sansa he arranged it. But if you remember right near the beginning of the wedding scene, Lady Olenna was fussing with Sansa's headpiece. That leads me to believe she MAY have been the one to retrieve the poison from her, but so far nothing else has been definitively stated.

Someone may very well correct me on this, though.
Adam S.
347. MDNY
Re: the poisoning of Joff Tool. Yes, Ibid@346 that is essentially how I read it. Littlefinger plotted with the Tyrells all the way back when he was sent by Tywin to negotiate with them to join Joff against Stannis. I think that this assassination was brewing even then. When the Tyrells arrive in KL, Sansa is invited to dine with the Queen of Thorns and Margaery, and she blurts out that Joff is cruel, and the Tyrells exchange a glance and say something like "that is unfortunate". I think even then they were considering killing Joff and trying to get Tommen to marry Margaery instead, hopefully putting her in position to rule.
I think Olenna loosened the stone in Sansa's hairnet, which was given to her by Dontos, who got it from Littlefinger, who obtained it either on his own or from the Tyrells. Everyone was involved, except for Tyrion, who then helped cover for his wife, and Sansa, who was the dupe. Perhaps Tyrion was supposed to be the sole suspect, but the Tyrells have disliked Sansa ever since she married Tyrion instead of Willas, even though she had no choice. I think they hoped both Sansa and Willas would be arrested and killed, while LF snuck Sansa out so only Tyrion would be convicted.
George Jong
348. IndependentGeorge
Honestly, I always hated the poisoning plot because it's way, way, way too convoluted and risky for any of the players. Why are the Tyrells plotting with Littlefinger in the first place? The more people are involved in the conspiracy, the riskier it is - so why involve Littlefinger of all people? The plot makes much more sense if Littlefinger manipulated the Tyrells into the murder without any direct involvement between them - which is impossible because of Dontos.

Who in their right mind uses a drunken fool like Dontos to handle the murder weapon? Especially when it's an extremely expensive silver hairnet which Dontos has no business having possession of; he just needs to be seen with it to draw suspicion.
349. olethros
... "I need eyes inside that room," she said. "To see what?" he said. "There can be no danger of a consummation. Tommen is much too young." "And Ossifer Plumm was much too dead, but that did not stop him fathering a child, did it?"
Someone with a boner that can impregnate from beyond the grave would be named Ossifer, wouldn't they?
Chris Nelly
350. Aeryl
@348, You are presuming LF is in his right mind.

A man who holds onto a unrequited crush for 20 years is not in his right mind.
Adam S.
351. MDNY
@350, 348: He didn't know it was totally unrequited until the last chapter in this book, though. When he tells Sansa he had her mother's maidenhead, I'm pretty sure he believed it. Littlefinger is a bastard, but he is exceedingly clever, and rarely takes personal risks (even his riskiest moves are well thought out and prepared, like taking command of the eyrie). I think he did enough to ensure that Dontos only had a minimum of knowledge, and wouldn't betray them until after the wedding, at which point he would be disposed of. Plus, most of those participating didn't know of his involvement, as he made certain it was known that he was already in the vale wooing Lysa, and the only one who knew he was still around has now been killed (I suspect that even the Tyrells don't know he was still nearby, he just helped them toward a conclusion that Joffrey's death could lead to a better royal match for Margaery).
Chris Nelly
352. Aeryl
Wait until she figures out Olenna's behind the poisoning, she'll be Leigh's favorite character of all time.
Marty Beck
353. martytargaryen
So happy she posted these two chapters together. That was sweet.
Chris Nelly
354. Aeryl
Yes, especially with the unspoiled reaction to Sansa's chapter.

I'll admit, when Joff started choking on Tyrion's pie, I though Cersei had poisoned Tyrion and Joff caught it instead, which would have been delightful(I REALLY wanted that woman to be inadvertently responsible for the death of her children, and I guess she kinda IS, but I wanted it more directly)
Chris Nelly
355. Aeryl
Is pointing out that the "snakes" who poisoned Baelor are Dornes a spoiler?

Because I had that figured, but I can't remember if it was just a brilliant deduction, or if it was pointed out before?
David Goldfarb
356. David_Goldfarb
Leigh seems to think that Joffrey just choked, rather than was poisoned. Would it be a spoiler to point her back at the Prologue to A Clash of Kings? (I kind of think it would be, which is why I haven't posted in that thread, but I wonder what other people think.)
Deana Whitney
357. Braid_Tug
@ Aeryl - funny, that's how I thought the poison plot went for a long time. That someone was trying to kill Tyrion but got Joff instead.

Then again, I didn’t think Margery was the type of girl the show paints her. Makes her crying at the wedding take on a whole different angle. And her marriage to Tomman.

Her reactions to Sansa's chapter was so on-point and delightful!
Knowing she was going to enjoy her wish so soon was perfect!
358. MRHD
I wouldn't point back to anything, it will be revealed in the book in time.
Deana Whitney
359. Braid_Tug
@ 356, David, she'll be corrected next week, so no rush.
Seems like Leigh is trying not to back read, so yes, she does miss things.
Chris Nelly
360. Aeryl
David, I would say so, Sansa's chapter with LF's explanation is next, so she'll figure it out soon enough.
361. MRHD
Speaking of unnecessary point backs, someone just pointed back to a Joffrey comment about putting Bran out of his misery out of mercy, which obviously will be revealed later. Bah.
Chris Nelly
363. Aeryl
It wasn't you Fiddler, it was flagged and removed already.
Sky Thibedeau
364. SkylarkThibedeau
Poor Jack Gleeson. I can't wait til this scene next season but the poor boy nails Joff so well he'll be playing psycho parts forever.
Chris Nelly
365. Aeryl
Skylark, someone I talked to the other day when that adorable Vine video was posted, told me after his stint with Joffrey is over he's leaving acting to go into academia.

I think it might partly be in reaction to how fans treat him, I saw an interview with Lena Headey, who said fans are TERRIBLE to him at conventions, and it was hurtful because he's really a sweet kid.
David Goldfarb
366. David_Goldfarb
It's been a while since I read Storm, so I didn't remember that we got a fuller explanation that soon after. Okay, I'll hold off.
David Goodhart
367. Davyd
Can we just tell her about Loras and Renly now?

This week was Everything. ;)
Lisamarie LiGreci-Newton
368. Lisamarie
@365: Why are some people idiots? I have never understood why people would be horrible to an ACTOR for the character they play.

@367 - is this the one with the 'i'll sheathe your sword up somewhere Renly never found'? For some reason I thought Jaime said that. At any rate, who knows, it could end up being revealed later somewhere else, so I don't know if it should be spoiled.
Peter Stone
369. Peter1742

We're waiting until Jaime tells Loras
"Now sheathe your bloody sword, or I'll take it from you and shove it up some place even Renly never found."

If Leigh doesn't figure it out from that, I don't know what we'll do.
Chris Nelly
370. Aeryl
Have a meltdown, that's what we'll do, THAT'S WHAT WE DO!

That Jaime chapter's probably gonna roll around about the same time we'll need a new Spoiler Thread.
Marie Veek
371. SlackerSpice
@370: I can hear the collective "FUUUUUUU-", even as we speak.
Rob Munnelly
372. RobMRobM
I still can't believe Leigh missed the Renly hint last week, about Brella the maid who learned in Renly's house not to see all sorts of things. You're right, the sword is as good as we're going to get for a hint.

Jack Gleason was only of only a 100 students in his class at Trinity to earn special honors. He does plan to be an academic when he grows up. And kiss puppies, I guess.
373. KathrynM
@372 Have we had "Renly's little rose" yet? That was a big hint
374. zambi76
@372 Have we had "Renly's little rose" yet? That was a big hint
Yes, that's in the chapter where Tyrion welcomes Oberyn, but she focused on Oberyn making fun of Loras martial powers. Her downright Melisandric interpretations of all the Renly/Loras hints drives me bonkers.
375. zambi76
There is even something "funny" Renly/Loras at the purple wedding when you know about them.

That singer Aleric whatshisname singing that heartbreaking song about Renly's ghost, that flys back to Highgarden to one last time see his one true love. Knowing the actual circumstances this gives a whole new meaning to Margaery bursting into tears here too.
376. zambi76
Sorry for the triple but like I said IT DRIVES ME BONKERS.

Re the coming clues:

The chapter where Jaime is getting all homophobic on Loras's ass is chapter 62 (so next Thursday if she keeps with 2 chapters a week again).

Then there is chapter 67 with the in depth talk between those two, where Jaime gets Loras to come a bit out of his shell and the boy almost slips "We had ... we had prayed together that night".

After that there is just Loras gushing over Renly's porn stash and Cersei going crazy over Margs supposed virginity both in AFFC.
And the last part has some folks actually convinced to this day that Loras and Margaery are lovers.
377. KathrynM
@374, 375 & 376 Thanks for the clarification zambi. I hope you manage to chill till next week...
Faiz Imam
378. FaizImam
I really hope she gets the clue next week. Cuz if she does she'll definitely be over the moon when she comes accross the Ch67 reference.
Marty Beck
379. martytargaryen
I was just listening to the audio of this upcoming Jaime chapter. The only way Leigh would pass over the Renly comment is if she dismisses it as typical "homophobic locker room" insults. That seems like a stretch though.
Melanie DeJulis
380. Shonagon
Well, somehow I missed it during my first read. I have a hard time explaining this, as during my second read it seemed plain as day. I guess I must have just been so focused on Brienne's plight that I was blind to all else. Damn that GRRM, when a beloved character is in danger, readers are on the edge of their seats.
Sudo Nym
381. Shakerag

Chris Nelly
382. Aeryl
"I guess we’ll have to hope Jaime continues to doubt his guilt and ends up smuggling him out of the castle or something,"

Chris Nelly
383. Aeryl
Likely the same way Shonagan @380 did, too worried for Brienne.
384. MRHD
Darn, it's too bad she missed it. I remember this is when I got Loras and Renly's relationship. I remember my reaction was something like "why is Jaime commenting about someplace even Renly never found in regards to Loras? Does he think they were an item or something? Oh... wait, huh... ah-hah!"
Sudo Nym
385. Shakerag
So much hint dropping going on in the main thread >_>
Chris Nelly
386. Aeryl
And it's NOT just in regards to Loras, it is in regards to Loras' ASS, which you think would be a big clue.
Deana Whitney
387. Braid_Tug
And the collective shit fit is hitting the fan.
The line we were all hoping for does not get a mention, and she’s so focused on Bri, that the comment passed her by.


Could we be a little more careful in the main thread?

At least she got clued into the other aspects of the plot. But did miss the Thorn Queen, then again, that’s very easy to miss!
Scott Silver
388. hihosilver28
Soooo, no clueing her into Loras?

Also, is there any more detail that comes out about the poisoning, regarding Olenna? I can't remember if they revisit the fact that she adjusted Sansa's hairnet.
Chris Nelly
389. Aeryl
There's a chapter where LF lays it all out how he helped the Tyrells. I thought it was this one, but I guess not.
390. Ryamano
There's only one more hint that Loras and Renly were gay left in the books: "we were... we were praying that night" in the next Jaime chapter. It's very subtle. Should we tell Leigh now about the gay relationship she missed or not?
391. zambi76
That's chapter 68 Aeryl. I'm actually more baffled by her puzzlement about Joff's murder than that she missed the Renly/Loras line (It's kinda obvious now those two are just not even on her radar of interest anymore).
Vincent Lane
392. Aegnor
Yeah, at this point I'm all for cluing her in to the Renly/Loras thing. At this point she has definitively missed it. There won't be any hints close to obvious as the one in this chapter. It isn't a major plot point and she isn't going to discover it in the text at this point. I'm just curious what her reaction to it would be.

I think it all goes back to the chapter where Catelyn met up with Renley's camp. She misread the paragraph where it said that Renly pretty much ignored Margaery and fawned over Loras. In her recap she completely misread that and said the exact opposite. I think that has totally colored her entire interpretation of events regarding Loras/Renly/Margaery. She believes from that that Renly was probably in love with Margaery, which would naturally cause her to ignore any subtle clues indicating a Loras/Renly relationship.

So yeah, if we're voting I say she gets filled in.
Peter Stone
393. Peter1742
The hint in the next Jaime chapter isn't all that subtle ... Jaime also tells Loras that he, too, would have gone wild and killed everybody when Renly died (and thinks to himself "no way"). But I expect Leigh is not going to get this one, either.
Vincent Lane
394. Aegnor
If she didn't get "Now sheathe your bloody sword, or I'll take it from you and shove it up some place even Renly never found." Then there isn't any clue regarding this that she will get. That is about 10 times more blatant than any other clue in the books, and she didn't even comment on it.
395. zambi76
I would wait until after ch. 67 but then, well... there are some hints in AFFC too, but if you haven't catched on by then, they probably don't make the least bit of sense and are just percieved as random Cersei crazypov noise.
396. Ryamano
I vote we tell her so that in the next Jaime chapter, with the last hint, she can make a whole post about she missing the gay relationship in the book. Considering what she said in a Wheel of Time Re-Read, that she'd notice if there were secret gay relationships between men in that series, that'd be be a very interesting post to read.
Melanie DeJulis
397. Shonagon
I'd have to look more closely at AFFC to be sure, but I'm guessing once Leigh's missed the next clue, it'll be a lost cause, at least through book 5. Though I'm DYING to see her reaction it, I don't think it should be spoiled for her. I agree with those above who have suggested it's still possible there will be other clues in books 6/7 which will finally give it away for Leigh. Maybe when Loras arrives back in King's Landing...
Peter Stone
398. Peter1742
I vote we wait at least until the next Jaime chapter. I think it's possible she could get it then.
Chris Nelly
399. Aeryl
If we're voting, I vote now. She completely missed it, she didn't even reference it, it's a lost cause.
George Jong
400. IndependentGeorge
And I vote we don't fill her in on anything. If she goes down a blind alley, then so be it. Seriously, why is it so urgent that we must explain every last detail for her? Isn't that the whole point to the unspoiled read? If and when she does watch the show, isn't it better if she gets completely taken by surprise by the reveal?
Chris Nelly
401. Aeryl
In this particular instance, I disagree(though most times I would agree about spoiling). It's her flat out assertion that she was going to be LOOKING for this couple, and that she missed it that's got me wanting to have her filled in.
Adam S.
402. MDNY
It has been a lost cause on the Renly/Loras thing for months now. Even if you didn't get that they were lovers while Renly lived, you should have picked up on some hints, and gotten it soon after Renly's death. Given how little Leigh picked up on any clues (as pointed out above) I have had no real hope for her realizing it. It's in the past, and I would vote we just tell her but I know some people are vehemently against that.
I cannot believe she was so wrong about the hairnet jazz. That is explained again by Littlefinger in a future chapter, but I can't remember when.
403. olethros
Just tell her already. She'll never see it otherwise, it's immaterial to the plot, and it'll be fucking hilarious. Though the GoT unspoiled watch commentary in six years or so would be hilarious, too.
Eric Lesch
404. EricLesch
I vote for not telling her, as it goes against the whole spirit of this read.
Matt Spencer
405. Iarvin
I vote against telling her - its made very obvious by the show, which she will undoubtedly watch at some point.
Marie Veek
406. SlackerSpice
I vote we tell - if it's only been really confirmed thus far via Word of Gay, I suspect it's not going to get any sort of significant mention.
Scott Silver
407. hihosilver28
I'm actually revising my position to wait until the next Jaime chapter since it has the "we were...we were praying that night". After that...I say we point her back to the conversation in this chapter.
Marie Veek
408. SlackerSpice
@407: Perhaps also bring up the chapter that mentioned Renly paying more attention to Loras than he was to Maergery, too?
Chris Nelly
409. Aeryl
I'm down for waiting, but I was convinced this one was going to be the one she caught.
Vincent Lane
410. Aegnor

Why tell her? Because I want to read about her reaction to it. I would have much rather she figured it out on her own, but now I have no hope of that. I find it very unlikely that she will ever figure it out as part of this read.
Deana Whitney
411. Braid_Tug
I think that if any of us told her, it would get flagged and deleted by the mods.

She's not going to get it until Cersei is obsessing about Margery in the next book and sets up the whole "she's been cheating" thing.
Cersei thinks something along the lines of "a man may prefer wine, but will drink beer when it's not available."

So yes, now it will be a year or more before she has that moment, but she will have it.
If she even remembers how Renly was acting she’ll be “Wait. What? Holy cow did I miss something?!”
Chris Nelly
412. Aeryl
I don't read that line as being about Loras being gay, more that she feels men fall into opportunitic homosexuality, which could lead her to overlook that Loras and Renly were in love, not in lust.
Vincent Lane
413. Aegnor
Oh, I don't necessarily think that is an obstacle. If we were to come to a consensus I think the mods would allow it. Regarding the Cersei clue, I do not believe there is any way she gets it from that. All the rest of the clues are very minor and only stand out as important if you know the truth. They aren't enough to lead one to the truth.
Mike Lapp
414. MorsManwoody
If she doesn't catch on from the next Jaime chapter then I think she should be at least pointed in the right direction here. This was the most obvious hint and I don't see any way she picks up on it if she doesn't get it then. There's nothing I would expect her to pick up on in AFFC or ADWD and I doubt there will be much, if anything, in future books. It's not a major plot point and GRRM expects pretty much everyone to know by now that they were lovers.

Regarding waiting for the show to make it obvious, I don't think Leigh is going to watch the show until she's finished the read, iirc, so we're talking quite some time before that happens.
David Goodhart
415. Davyd
I just don't really understand her process with this read. I was having so many WTF moments my first read through, that I spent just as much time researching the answers to my questions in what I already read than I did continuing to read. Many times she's had questions, shrugged, and carried on. She's not reviewing her own reads. So I don't think she is necissarily inclined to do much thinking on the subject of Renly/Loras, since it's been so long since Renly was on stage. That's not a slight on Leigh, she's obviously a successful Reader. I'm just thinking if it's not put right out in front of her, she's not going to be thinking about it, so the clues aren't clicking, it's too much info to process for such a small detail of the story. I know everyone approaches a story in their own way, and Leigh is just doing a couple chapters at a time, and analyzing them on their own merits. I think it's just too much of a hope for her to put the peices together until she actually looks at what she's gone over as a whole and sees what's there. I know it took a lot of research and rereading of certain chapters for me to 'get' a lot of this story. So, all that to say, I doubt seriously that she will ever pick up on the R/L thing on her own whilst doing this Read. Does it matter? To the story, not really, not yet at least. Does it matter to the followers of the blog? Well obviously it does, to some. So I vote (if we are indeed voting) to give her one more chance with the Jamie chapter, and if not, call it good and give her a hint. Then, once she's figured it out and mentioned it in the comments, we can all move past it. #closure

Thus ends this stream of consciousness.
Kate Collura
416. dreamwalker
Hi, new poster here - I just finished my first read this summer. Just wanted to throw this out there on the debate whether to clue Leigh in on Renly/Loras. Wouldn't it be possible to essentially let Leigh decide if she wants to know at this point? She could be told in general terms, without mentioning character names, that there is something she missed, not key to the plot, which is made explicit (pun intended) in the show - and now that all major hints have been passed does she want to be clued in? I too would enjoy reading her reaction, but would hate to feel anything was being ruined for her, and people might feel safer telling her if we knew she would not mind. I also agree she's very unlikely to figure it out on her own at this point. Thanks for all your contributions, I've enjoyed reading!
417. Jeff R.
I vote against voting. Instead, we should leave the decision to the one among us who can raise the largest army.
Marty Beck
418. martytargaryen
it has been mentioned several times, but the pace of her reading is a huge factor in her missing the clues. I remember that Sansa chapter (the lunch w/ Tyrell ladies) when she ran into Loras, who was mourning his lost love.

Leigh was, at the time, curious who that might have been, but has since had boat loads of time pass and many other more significant things happen.
419. Gold for Petyr
Loras is in the RAINBOW GUARD!!!!!!!!!
421. Gold for Petyr
Meanwhile WHY are you people putting up with Leigh's slander of Littlefinger. Granted she admits she can't percieve 90% of his genius. But really she's unecessarily pejorative.
Zorila Desufnoc Eht
422. AlirozTheConfused
I vote that we tell her to stop reading the series and read something of actual quality.
Matt Spencer
423. Iarvin
@416 that makes sense! If Leigh wants to be 'spoiled' to something that she's missed like this, she would likely be willing to tell us so! So ask!
Faiz Imam
424. FaizImam
I stand by my comment in the thread that was removed.

I said something like "There is a double entendre in one of these chapters that you should go back and look for"

That way she will go back and specifically read the chapters looking for one, but also we are not actually telling her anything.

If, knowing there is a specific nigh-explicit double entrendre in there, so still does not get it, we can proceed further.

But I think a limited reveal that allows her to find out for herself is warranted.

425. zambi76
Leigh was, at the time, curious who that might have been, but has since had boat loads of time pass and many other more significant things happen.
Moreover she expected it would be spelled out for her later in the books who was Loras's love if it was important IIRC. And that's the problem it is never spelled out just hinted an nudged at.
Sydo Zandstra
426. Fiddler
Why not just drop a hint that there are (male) gay characters in the story, and let her go back and check if it gets her interest?

She can always allow a spoiler then, after giving up.

If I were her, I'd hate to find out through watching the series...
Tom Smith
427. phuzz
I think we should ask Leigh if she'd like us to tell her.
Say something like
"There's a plot point that you've missed, and you've pretty much gone past all the hints now. If you watch the show, it will get spoiled for you straight away, would you like us to tell you, or at least point you at a clue you missed?"

That said, I don't think it was a spoiler to tell her to read the last chapter again and look for mentions of someone playing with the hairnet (she even noted it in her commentory).

On that note, why kill Joffery before the bedding? Until it's been consumated the marriage between Margery and Joff doesn't count, so Margery goes back to being 'just' a highborn womb on legs, and not a widowed queen (for the second time). That said the Tyrells are pretty much in the position to insist that she's married to the next in line, and this avoids unplesentness (and kills off Joffery, which lets face it, is a bloody good thing.)
Chris Nelly
428. Aeryl
Because after the bedding, you run the risk that Margaery's pregnant, and NO ONE WANTS THAT! (There's always moon tea, but why risk)

Plus her selling point still is her virginity, and if they wait until after the bedding then she's no longer a virgin.
Chris Nelly
429. Aeryl

Renly and Loras (Leigh hasn't figured that one out yet)
Daenerys and Daario
Jon and Ygritte
Tyrion and Tysha
Robb and Jeyne
Oberyn Martell and Ellaria Sand

R&L I'll give you.

D&D hasn't happened yet, so not valid for people's current feelings.

J&Y and R&L, there are serious issues surrounding their abilities to freely consent, so I don't count them.

T&T, was never actually IN the book, so I don't count it.

The Viper and Ellaria are probably the best example, and it's one of the ONLY relationships that chosen, consensual, and not DESTRUCTIVE to the future of the realm, as Robb & Jeyne, Cersei & Jaime, has been and Dany and Daario could be.
430. Ibid
I feel like this has been talked to death at this point. I'll say that I suspected Loras and Renly that first time we met them together in Renly's tent. "Oh, they're probably lovers."

But beyond that, it's not really a major plot point, is it? They could easily establish that Margaery was not pregnant. Did they ever difinitiely ascertain that she was still a virgin after Renly? I simply don't recall--it was firmly asserted by the Tyrells, but I don't know if she submitted to a physical examination. As Aeryl says in @428, Joffrey was poisoned before the bedding, so we know they never consummated their marriage.

So, again I ask you all... why does anyone care about Renly/Loras? Does it matter that Leigh may miss this little detail?
Scott Silver
431. hihosilver28
One reason it matters is because of statements Leigh made near the start of the read regarding gay characters in fantasy. It was something to the extent of she thought it highly unbelievable that there weren't more gay characters in fantasy, as well as saying it was something she was actively looking for. So for her to miss a set of MAJOR characters who are gay in a series is kind of a big deal in this particular case. For many readers it's not a big deal at all, but it is/will be with Leigh.
Marty Beck
432. martytargaryen
@430 - she gets subjected to a physical examination later in the series. However, this occurs shortly after the narrative (forget who says it) explains that many high-born "lose their maidenheads" to horseriding well before losing their virginity. Hence, doubt remains.
Adam S.
433. MDNY
@430 I keep talking and thinking about it because I have read all of Leigh's posts, both on AROIAF and WOT. And she pays very special attention to sexuality in SFF writing, particularly homosexuality. Some of her most memorable rants have been about that and gender relations in general. So her only catching a reference to one gay knight in the vale and complaining about the lack of others, and TOTALLY missing a gay couple that features fairly prominently, is a big deal. And she totally missed it, and will never catch it at this point until she sees the show, unless someone tells her. That is why it matters.
Melanie DeJulis
434. Shonagon
@443 I agree completely with your sentiment but I'd like to reiterate and add to what I said above that it's not certain Leigh will never get the hint since we don't know what's still to come in books 6/7. Renly may be dead, but Loras is still around, and may drop more hints about his lost love, or even take another lover. If he's, er, still capable.
Sydo Zandstra
435. Fiddler

Having had to wait for each installment after GoT, I wouldn't like to be the one to tell Leigh to wait for forthcoming books before starting to watch the HBO-series.

Apart from that, she could pick it up by hearing people talk about the series. At some point she's bound to hear.

And having seen Leigh debate the subject for years now, I'm completely with MDNY. It doesn't hurt to ask without giving clues yet.
Bridget McGovern
436. BMcGovern
Just a note to say that I've already emailed Leigh (in very non-specific terms), letting her know about the situation developing in the comments, since it's becoming a moderation issue. For now, I'd appreciate it if we could keep all of this out of the non-spoiler thread; and of course, however she decides to proceed, we'll respect her wishes.
Bridget McGovern
437. BMcGovern
Update: Leigh would prefer not to know what she's missed, at this point in time, for various reasons (some of which have to do with her plans for following up the Read of Ice and Fire). We understand that's not the answer that some of you were hoping for, but please continue to keep the non-spoiler posts clear of direct (and indirect) references to the Loras/Renly relationship. Thanks!
Deana Whitney
438. Braid_Tug
@ Bridget, Thanks for asking for us!
It is funny how eager people are for her to figure out this point. Since it has nothing to do with the plot in the grand scheme.

And those of us from the WOT read have to remember, Leigh's had 10+ years of Jordon to say "Hey, where are the gay guys?!"

She's not had that type of time here. And GRRM's been so upfront about the others, why should be she be looking for the hidden? She's having a hard time just keeping track of who's doing what. Let alone who's doing (did) who.

Am sad that she did not have the whole…”Wait, why is Margery still a virgin? And why do the Lannisters’ accept that? Let’s rethink on that marriage with Renly.” moment.
439. Ibid
@431 (and everyone else)

Okay, I guess I didn't have the context of Leigh's commentary. I read some oblique references to it in the last 100 coments or so, but I didn't really get it.

As I said before, it's a fairly minor detail. But I guess an interesting thing to note is, while R/L certainly tried to keep it secret, many knew about it and there didn't seem to be any significant consequences. I guess it raises the question: what ARE the societal norms around homosexuality in Westeros? I'm pretty sure there are other allusions to other characters, but I just can't remember at the moment. It would be surprising if there were none of it in the Night's Watch, for instance.
Chris Nelly
440. Aeryl
@Ibid, I personally hold that Blackfish is gay, and there is a gay pedophile in the Vale, but we've only heard rumors of him right now. He won't be confirmed until LF tells Sansa. Oberyn is openly bisexual, as is Ellaria.

I think Barristan Selmy recalls a gay Kingsguard member when you get his POV in ADWD. Jon's new squire, Silk, is a flamboyant former male prostitute.
441. Gold for Petyr
@ 440: SILK! SILK! What is he some Essos drag queen?

Its Satin baby. SATIN.
442. Gold for Petyr
@439. There's Whores Bane Umber.
Sky Thibedeau
444. SkylarkThibedeau
I was rewatching Tyrion bitch slap Joffrey again from season one. It just occured to me that is what caused the little monster to hire some one to kill Bran with his Uncles knife.
Chris Nelly
445. Aeryl
It wasn't Tyrion's knife. It was Robert's. LF lied and said he lost it to Tyrion, but for Tyrion to win a bet that tourney, he'd have to bet AGAINST Jaime, and Tyrion wouldn't do that. LF never owned it as far as I know(unless LF lost it to Robert), he just took advantage of the opportunity Cat presented to sow some chaos between the Starks and Lannisters.

It was Robert's drunken declaration that Bran would be better off dead than crippled that led Joffrey to hire the assassin.
David Goodhart
446. Davyd
Ok, so no telling. I can respect that!

As for gay characters and societal norms, I'm about 4/5's the way through my first read of ADWD and had a 'wtf?aHA!' moment when I realized JonCon had the hots for Rhaegar.

I'm a gay male, and it took almost all of JC's POVs before I picked up on it, and I'm usually on the lookout for these things! So I can totally see how she misses it, when her reads are spaced so far apart.

Glad this is settled.
447. Renly 8==D Loras
@446: rainbow guard.
448. zambi76
I personally hold that Blackfish is gay, and there is a gay pedophile in the Vale,
I'm still not sure about the Blackfish and I'm also not sure where the Lyn is a pedophile comes from? Because Littlefinger says he "likes boys" and twirls his mustache while doing so? Jaime says Oberyn "beds boys" too, and nobody made a pedophile out of him for that. The only thing that may be fishy is that Sweetrobin seems creeped out by Lyn, but that could be for a myriad of other reasons too (dude really layed it on thick for Lysa after all).
449. zambi76
In place of an ETA: Not saying Lyn isn't a total creeper, but he seems like an ASOIAF garden variety rapist type. I'm just not sold that he's into pre-pubescents, yet.
Sydo Zandstra
450. Fiddler
@Bridget: thanks. You're a star!

@Aeryl: I'm still not convinced that the Blackfish is gay just because he refuses to marry (because he doesn't really need to marry, being a second son and the first son having spawned enough heirs already). So the Blackfish not wanting to marry doesn't have to mean that he's gay.

The ponds around Riverrun may contain some BlackRivers and there may be some BlackStones for all we know. He's a tertiairy character after all. ;-)
Scott Silver
451. hihosilver28
Thanks for asking! That certainly clears all that up. Though I'm still crossing my fingers that she'll pick it up on the next reference.

Yeah, I'm with you. I do not believe for a second that the Blackfish is gay. Just that he refuses to marry. Just because the second is true does make the first a certainty. Is it possible? Absolutely. But I don't see anything in the text to support that besides the fact that he will not marry. And I would need some supplementary evidence to believe that he is gay.
Chris Nelly
452. Aeryl
But the fight between Blackfish and Hoster was bad enough that he ran off with Lysa to the Vale, with hints at a greater strain than just "Blackfish doesn't want to marry" that I read more as "Blackfish won't hide his sexuality by getting married", and I've felt that way since I met his character IN the Vale.
Scott Silver
453. hihosilver28
I can see that. And if it turns out to be true, the text would support it. But I still don't think that he is gay. The strains between him and Hoster seemed to be greater than just the marriage.
Chris Nelly
454. Aeryl
Of course it is. Blackfish doesn't want to hide who he is, and Hoster wants him to, "family duty honor" and all that.

To Hoster, this is the greatest of betrayals, failing to put your "family" first(in this case, family means patriarch). To the Blackfish, to do what Hoster wants, is to live a lie, to deny himself. Neither will move from this.

So, like many other noble born gay men, joining an honor guard, where it is commonly expected that you will eschew familial bonds, is the only compromise Blackfish could find.
Scott Silver
455. hihosilver28
Like I said, the text can support it, but I don't think that what is there is enough to say that the Blackfish is gay.
Chris Nelly
456. Aeryl
I'll also say, that IMO, the show confirmed it by having him be repulsed by the women hitting on him at the Red Wedding, but the point's been made that maybe he's just repulsed by Frey women.
457. Ibid
@Aeryl: Yeah, I noticed that too. But I think the show embellished Blackfish's character a bit, in areas beyond his sexuality. They certainly played up the Renly/Loras thing much more so than the book did. Brynden's revulsion was not part of the book, I don't think.

Is Brynden Tully gay? I think all we can say is "maybe." Edmure also apparently wasn't in a hurry to marry, but there was much talk is his profligacy with the Local Ladies of Commerce.

Maybe we'll learn more about this in TWOW and ADOS.
Adam S.
458. MDNY
LOL I think the Blackfish is gay, but I'm straight, yet him declining the Frey woman on the show doesn't mean anything. I would certainly be repulsed by a Frey woman regardless of how attractive she may be. Related to Walder Fuckface Shitstain Frey? NO THANK YOU
Rob Munnelly
459. RobMRobM
The GRRM Dangerous Women excerpt on the main site is interesting. It confirms that you need Targ blood to ride a dragon. Looking forward to where Tyrion gets his from (as he's so confident in approaching Dany) and for the new potential heritage reveal for Jon Snow when dragons like him upon his meeting Dany.
Scott Silver
460. hihosilver28
RobM: Agreed. I'm looking forward to reading that short story in the Dangerous Women. I didn't think much of the theory that Tyrion is not Tywin's son up until that review, and now it looks pretty damn certain that that will be the case.

Aeryl: As a straight man, I saw the show playing Brynden being repulsed by the Frey women as just that, Brynden being repulsed by the Frey women. Not as him being repulsed by women in general, who just happened to be Freys. It seemed like more of a light joke in a very dark episode. Granted, I thought it was a little cheap, but it didn't bother me much. I never read that as him being gay. But once again, the source material can support your theory, so I will be more than happy to eat crow if it turns out that the Blackfish is gay.
461. Gold for Petyr
@459. RobMRobM: Oh Come on everyone in Valyria didn't have Targaryen blood. And certainly a sking changer could tame a dragon... I mean reallly...
Chris Nelly
462. Aeryl
Dragons weren't tamed in Valyria, only the Targs were able to do that, IIRC.
Maiane Bakroeva
463. Isilel

Other dragonlord families were able to tame dragons too, sure. But they all perished in the Doom - Targaryens were the only dragonlords to survive.
And if non-dragonlord skinchangers could tame dragons - why didn't they? There were wild dragons in Westeros too, once.
464. Jeff R.
One wonders why the Blackfish didn't just take the Black. I mean, twenty years or so, around the same time with Benjen did, before the idea of the main noble families sending a few spare male children to the wall so that the defense of the northern front wouldn't be entirely the province of vicious criminals fell out of style...(And of the four ways of permanently avoiding marriage, well, he obviously doesn't have the temperment for scholarship or priesthood. The Kingsguard would also have been plausible, I guess...)
465. Aerona Greenjoy
At least four or five Loras-or-Renly-gayness hints are sprinkled through AFFC in Jaime and Cersei chapters, but most are less clear than this week's and as likely to be overlooked or dismissed as meaning something else. We'll see.
Faiz Imam
466. FaizImam
Even if she does not want us to tell her whats up, I think there is more than enough hints in our behavior, and of others in the comments, to make her pay a bit more attention.

More importantly, i'm interested to know what plans she has

"for following up the Read of Ice and Fire."

She's not going to be done till mid 2015 at the earliest, at which point WoW will probably come out.

What type of plan could she have for 2016? if not 2017?

some sort of accelerated re-read? HBO watching posts?
467. Gold for Petyr
@463. Isilel:

1) There weren't any dragons in Westeros before the Targaryens.

2) Every family of every dragon lord had their entire bloodline die out? There's no one tenuously related to them. Because there's blent of Valyrian blood in Lys. Volantis scattered around Essos.
468. zambi76
HBO watching posts?
Is my guess. Especially if she was told that what she missed would be pretty obvious there. But yeah, that's some mighty long term planning.
469. Asbjorn
@466 She is also going to read the Dunk & Egg stories.
I like your idea about HBO posts too, and have actually had the same thought.
Chris Nelly
470. Aeryl
She's gonna be SOFA KING pissed when she thinks Davos is dead in AFFC.
George Jong
471. IndependentGeorge
@470 - only if she actually believes it. Ever since the end of COK, I've been much more skeptical. I thought Sandor died, but not Brienne or Davos.

I don't think Stannis or Jon are dead, either, but we'll just have to wait to find out if I'm right.
Chris Nelly
472. Aeryl
I don't think they are either, but I bought Davos' because of the reports that his shortened hands were displayed and that I was expecting it, based on Leigh's reasoning.
473. bookworm1398
@464 Taking the black or joining Kingsguard is not just about not marrying. You also give up your wealth and cannot own/inherit land. Blackfish might not have wanted that.
Scott Silver
474. hihosilver28
Stannis? Oh, from the letter that Ramsay sent out. Right. Yeah, I don't believe that one either, unless George just completely effed with the timelines just to give us that. But he's been good about being consistent with the timeline. As in, each chapter come chronologically after the one preceding it, even when it's with a different character.
Chris Nelly
475. Aeryl
Yeah, I thought we had confirmed that Jon's reaction at the Wall was to misinformation from Ramsey, and Stannis' survival was already confirmed.
George Jong
476. IndependentGeorge
@474 - GRRM has explicitly stated that the timelines at the beginnings/endings of the books tend to be somewhat jumbled for narrative effect. For example, I think Jaime's opening chapter in SOS actually occurs chronologically before some of the latter chapters of COK. He's at the beginning of SOS because it's the start of his arc; it makes no sense narratively to put him at the end of COK, even though that's where it belongs chronologically. FFC/DWD is definitely all jumbled up due to the parallel stories.

I do not believe the preview chapters that have been released cement Jon or Stannis' fates one wya or another.

ETA: given Leigh's comments this week, is anybody else dying to read her reaction to the reign of King Tommen I in FFC?
Chris Nelly
477. Aeryl
Personally, I like the cliffhanger ending of ADWD, pretty much everyone is on a razor's edge right now.

My suspicion is that Dany's about to get a khalasar, Jon gets saved/resurrected by Mel, and Stannis will take Winterfell, all in the first few chapters. And of course Tyrion will eventually get to Dany, but not before she misconstrues a LOT of things about him, being a Lannister and with Brown Ben.
Adam S.
479. MDNY
Aeryl, I think all you wrote will happen, as will Arianne's plotline... Oh, and Arya and Sansa both have a lot hanging in their threads too. But the main focus of WOW is going to be north of the wall, from what GRRM has said. I'm guessing more time with Bran, Jojen's death (maybe this book), and who knows what else. Coldhands revealed as Benjen? Rickon and Osha turning up again? Likely we'll get more info on the WW/others too.
Faiz Imam
480. FaizImam
Boots, Lady Whiskers and SER POUNCE!!!!
Adam S.
481. MDNY
Yay Ser Pounce. Tommen's cute and kinda funny. Question: How is he going to die? There are so many possibilities...Maybe someone from Dorne (i.e. the Sand Snakes) kills him to clear the path for Myrcella ?
482. Gold for Petyr
I can't believe Leight didn't realize that Davos was trying to get Stannis to go North. I mean Stannis was already looking for a battle to restart his War. Stannis claims to have foreseen the true enemy in the North. I mean everything points to it. Even though I was still surprised when he showed up.
483. zambi76
@ 481: When Tommen dies, it will probably the first time I will be really, really pissed off at GRRM for killing someone. Was mildly to averagely pissed off about Sean Bean I mean Ned and Renly. Otherwise: Meh.
484. Crusader75
@482 Leigh did see that the note was about the situation on the Wall, but she seems to have discounted the idea that it would be to Stannis's advantage to help in that fight, so she does not think that's what Davos's mystery note is about.
485. Gold for Petyr
@484. Crusader75:

Yeah, I know. The thing you have realizee about Stannis is he doesn't have anything to lose in the first place. He's looking for a victory, he already reject claw island. Where else is he going to go?

...The more I think about it going North was such a genius move. It was either that or Dorne and Doran Martell wouldn't have helped Stannis.
486. Ryamano
What's the name of the cat that one of the Targaryen princesses had? The one that has lived in the Red Keep forever and that when Arya tried to catch back in book 1 resulted in she overhearing the Varys-Illiryo talk?
487. MjF
Balerion, after the dragon of Aegon the Conqueror.
Faiz Imam
488. FaizImam

Where/when do we learn this?

While it fits, I always thought it was another anonymous cat.
Adam S.
489. MDNY
@488 It isn't known. It's stated that Princess Rhaenys had a cat named Balerion, and people think the black cat Arya chased was him. (Game of Thrones, and a sample Arianne chapter from TWOW)
Chris Nelly
491. Aeryl
But at least the Vale idea fell through. I’m kind of curious to see what Lysa’s been doing all this time, but not that curious. And I certainly don’t want Arya (or any character I care about) anywhere near her buckets o’ crazy.


We'll have to remind her of this once she learns where Sansa's going. THEY WERE SO CLOSE TO BEING REUNITED!!!!! The first thing Arya'd do is pull her hair though.
Sudo Nym
492. Shakerag
When does the LF/Lysa shagging start? I thought it was not long from now?
Chris Nelly
493. Aeryl
There's a Tyrion chapter, then a Jaime chapter(the final Loras/Renly hint).

Then Sansa arrives in the Fingers, to meet Lysa.
Marie Veek
494. SlackerSpice
@492: I can already hear her screaming "Brain bleach! Dear God, where's the brain bleach?!"
Chris Nelly
495. Aeryl
I think she's gonna stumble for a bit over the fact that Lysa is leaping into LF's arms. Last I recall, she was quite cynical about his success in that arena.
496. Aerona Greenjoy
I don't think it's crossed Leigh's mind, knowing Littlefinger as she does, that anyone could want him, even Lysa. It will be a delicious Revelation. Maybe she'll remember Hoster's ravings about Lysa's lost lover, or maybe not until the book's end.
Adam S.
497. MDNY
Lysa reminisces later about her father forcing an abortion, but I don't think Leigh will connect that to "Tansy", which we learned elsewhere is an abortificant tea. But the 2 Sansa chapters, the one where Lysa marries LF , which details the poison plot with the Tyrells at the wedding, and the last chapter in the book where she raves about their plot to poison her husband and blame the Lannisters to Cat, are full of juicy bits that will positively floor Leigh to the point she might totally overlook the Tansy thing.
Scott Silver
498. hihosilver28
WAIT! That's what Hoster meant by saying "Tansy" over and over again? Just that Lysa had taken an abortificant?
499. Gold for Petyr
@497. MDNY: I can't wait to Leigh read that last chapter and recognizes Littlefinger's full magnificentness.
500. Gold for Petyr
@498. hihosilver28:

Just that. That's why Lysa hates him, which is why she conspired to have Lannisters burn down everything Hoster cares about, including Catelyn and Edmure. Just that, no bigie, she's not that pissed about it or anything.
501. alexonthemove
Ugh, thanks to this spoiler thread, I'm reminded of how much I don't remember from my first read-through! Time to hit the books again, so many juicy bits to appreciate! Thanks everyone for your fun and enlighting insights.
502. GarrettC
Carrying the books/show comparison over from my comment in the regular thread:

I'm actually not sure how much of the Theon stuff from season 3 was invented for the show, since I haven't gotten to FFC or DWD yet.

HOWEVER: In the show's RW, they kill Robb's wife, which was a pretty big series spoiler for me. I was sure that Robb not taking Jeyne to the wedding was going to be significant, because I assumed she was pregnant with his heir. As long as she remained alive in the books, I was waiting for the next heir of Winterfell hammer thing to politically fall. The show really leaves no doubt that Jeyne Westerling is not remotely important to the future of the series.
Rob Munnelly
503. RobMRobM
@502. Agreed. Ditto Edric Storm being replaced by Gendry - implies ES is not important to future plot lines.

Re Theon - Theon is a broken man in ADWD. Past torture is strongly implied but not shown in detail. Castration is hinted at but not made express.
Chris Nelly
504. Aeryl
The impression I got was not just that he was castrated, but that Ramsay flayed it first.

Which I can understand the show cutting(not a pun).
Rob Munnelly
505. RobMRobM
@498 ... or it refers to Tansy, the head whore in the place Arya visited already, which is located right next to the town in which Hoster Tully was seriously injured during the Battle of the Bells. So he could have pulled a Robb Stark - fallen in love with an inappropriate girl while in a sick bed and regrets abandoning her later.

...or both.
Chris Nelly
506. Aeryl
@505, That's possible, but Cat's belief that it was a proper name, smells of Martinian misdirection to me.
Marie Veek
507. SlackerSpice
@500: The impression I got was that he'd tricked her into drinking it or otherwise forced her to, and she realized after the fact.
Scott Silver
508. hihosilver28
@500, 506, 507
Well, that makes a lot of sense actually. I had given up on ever knowing what the hell Lord Tully was saying, but I could see his guilt over that bubbling to the surface of his dementia. And it fits with the world since we've never met anyone with a name anywhere close to "Tansy".
Rob Munnelly
509. RobMRobM
Hiho - look at my post at 505. Yes, there is a Tansy character in play. Maybe a red herring, maybe not.
George Jong
510. IndependentGeorge
I'm 99.8% certain the Tansy at Stony Sept is a red herring (and probably an unintentional one at that). Tansy as an abortificent is confirmed in the text by Lysa's monologue; Tansy's connection to Hoster is precarious at best.
Zorila Desufnoc Eht
511. AlirozTheConfused
Dang it, Leigh missed the saddest paragraph in the series, and the only paragraph in which my favorite character apears.

470: Yes, the old Sofa King.
Rob Munnelly
512. RobMRobM
IG - If I were a betting man, I'd say the same but the facts are better than an .02% chance. Hoster was injured and spent substantial time there; Tansy seems to be the right age and beauty level to have "comforted" him; and we have the Robb Stark example in text for what can happen when a warrior is injured. Perhaps Catelyn's dislike/hate for Jon Snow is influenced by knowledge (admittedly not discussed in text) that her beloved father left a bastard in Stony Sept.... All we are missing is "the body" - i.e., a bastard that looks like a Tully.
Anthony Pero
513. anthonypero
@Jeyne Westerling not going into the RW as opposed to Robb's wife in the series:

The show did away with the whole Lannister manipulation angle of the books. Unfortunately. That was some of the most devious and brilliant writing in the series, and I wish Charles Dance could have had some lines illuminating how he manipulated Robb Stark into a marraige that basically destroyed any chnace he had of winning the war of five kings.
Adam S.
514. MDNY
@502 I never believed Robb would have heirs even before the show. Every time his wife took herbs to increase fertility, she was really taking abortificants thanks to her mother's meddling. So them killing his pregnant wife wasn't a huge change for me and didn't alter my expectations for the series. The future of the Stark house is in Bran and Rickon (likely Rickon at this point, with Bran looking unlikely to return and being probably unable to have sex, what with that whole paralysis below the waist thing), since Sansa and Arya would take a new name if they married, and anyway the male heir always inherits in Westeros regardless of age (well, except for in Dorne).
Anthony Pero
515. anthonypero

Exactly. There were enough clues intext about the Westerling's actively working for the Lannisters that thought of an heir to Robb never made sense to me. The Lannisters didn't need an Heir. They had Sansa.
Chris Nelly
516. Aeryl
I don't think the manipulation goes that far. I think he was more than willing to take advantage of the situation.

That would require a level of deviousness that's almost uncanny, and while I guess in a world with dragons and ice creatures we can't rule out that Tywin had a means of divining a future, it seems unlike him to dabble in such things. I mean, all it would take would be Robb deciding not to marry her, and then it's for nothing.

Jeyne's mother IS that devious, and I can see her throwing her own daughter into Robb's bed on the hopes he'd forsake his vows. Either he wins the war, in that case stop feeding Jeyne tansy tea so she can concieve, or he loses spectacularly because of broken alliances, and she can take credit for that too, which is what happens.

But for her to have collaborated with Tywin beforehand seems a reach too far.
Chris Nelly
517. Aeryl
@514, Unless part of the disruption of the social order coming on the back of three dragons overturns that stupid bit of tradition, like it is in Dorne.
518. Aerona Greenjoy
I was primarily thinking about the time somewhere in ACoK or ASoS (I don't have the books) when Hoster thought Cat was Lysa and urged her to forget "that stripling" and whatever else he called Littlefinger, that she would have sweet trueborn babies with Jon, etc.
519. GarrettC
Well, the Jeyne intrigue doesn't have to be limited to the possibility that she's pregnant. My larger point is that there is actually Jeyne intrigue in the book that is possible because she's alive following the Red Wedding. It is possible that Jeyne remains significant for some future chapter, whether in an unlikely pregnant scenario or in some other capacity, so it is possible for somebody like Leigh to theorize about it.

The show more or less eliminates all doubt, and some of the fun.

Although, just spinning thoughts... what would be the benefit of preventing Jeyne from concieving? Wouldn't one, particularly one with treachery in mind, WANT the heir to Winterfell in one's pocket?
521. Milk Steak
My impression was that Sansa's kid would still be considered a Stark. After all Ygritte's story about the Stark daughter knocked up by a wildling ended up with a Stark, Bronn is going to father a Stokesworth not a whatever name he comes up with. Part of the point is to give the people the appearance of going back to normal. You still get to have your Stark in Winterfell.
Theresa Wymer
522. Tekalynn
My take was that Hoster had forced Lysa to abort her baby by Littlefinger ("You'll have trueborn babes") and he felt tremendous guilt about it on his deathbed.
523. Gold for Petyr
@515. anthonypero 514. MDNY:

Wait a minute Sybell Spicer's grandmother was Maagi the frog. Sybell knows the Lannisters reign will end in disaster.

So was she lying to Tywin or was she lying to Jeyne?

Well if Jeyne snuck out of Riverrun and Eleyna is pretending to be Jeyne, then Sybell is in on it.

Regardless obviously, Jeynes child was never going to be old enough to alter the story we view. But that doesn't mean Jeyne isn't the Queen from Maagi the frog's prophecy.
524. Aerona Greenjoy
Eleyna was twelve when AFFC began. Could she really pass for Jeyne?
525. Gold for Petyr
@524. Aerona Greenjoy:

To someone who's never seen her before? Remeber she ripped her dress so on one can tell if her clothes fit or not. She's got the crown Robb gave her. She's screaming at her mother.

People see what they want to see. And Jamie does note she's slender and boyish looking which is not what Catelyn said Jeyne looked like.

Meanwhile Jeyne Poole is passing for Arya. Sallera is passing for a dude. The Hound is passing for a grave digger. No one recognizes Jamie Lannister comming home from Harrenhal. Baristan passes Arstan. And Theon can't even recognize his sister.
526. MRHD
In GRRM's Not A Blog, in response to a question as to whether the death of a tv show character means he's not planning to use them in upcoming books:

"Not at all. If they are alive in the books, they are alive in the books, and may well turn up again. Irri (and Jhiqui) is still serving as Dany's handmaid, Rakharo remains one of her bloodriders, Mago will definitely show up again. You will learn the fate of Pyat Pree in WINDS. The Thirteen are still one of the factions contending for power in Qarth. You may see more of Alayaya and Chataya as well, and you will definitely hear more of Jeyne Westerling."
527. Gold for Petyr
"you will definitely hear more of Jeyne Westerling."

Scott Silver
528. hihosilver28
What paragraph are you referring to? I'm rather curious.

EDIT: Nevermind, just finished all the comments on the main post. Huh. I don't even remember that part of the chapter.
Rob Munnelly
529. RobMRobM
@527 - she'll probably end up marrying Theon....
530. Gold for Petyr
@529. RobMRobM: The blackfish is probably hitting that right now.
Chris Nelly
531. Aeryl
I will say that if some be-penised squalling Stark brat* appears to deny Sansa or Arya their rightful rulership of Winterfell, well, you all know my friend the incontinent monarch of the couch.

*I really don't feel that Rickon's gonna be a factor here, I know Davos is looking for him, but I think that's just gonna put Davos somewhere important, NOT because Rickon's important, IMO. Which is too bad, cuz the kid that plays him on the show, KILLS IT!
532. Gold for Petyr
@531. Aeryl: Rickon, theoretically Bran and Jon are all ahead of Sansa and Arya given Robb's will which is with Howland Reed. The odds of either Sansa or Arya ruling anything is... well very low.
533. Gold for Petyr
@531. Aeryl:

Is there any reason to actually believe that? Cause Littlefinger isn't going to let Sansa out of his sight and does Arya even want to rule anything or is she just going to go around murdering people. There's basically no chance.

Though I may be biased I do want to Arya murdering a lot of people.
Chris Nelly
534. Aeryl
Sansa is going to kill LF, he'll have no choice, and I don't know if Arya wants it, but if something happens to Sansa(dead wolfs tend to mean dead Starks) it's hers.

Bran won't be ruling Winterfell.

Rickon won't be a factor, and Jon won't take it no matter what Robb's will says.
535. Gold for Petyr
@Aeryl: Maybe I should have been more specific.

Is there a reason you believe Rickon won't be a factor? You keep saying that but there doesn't seem to be anything supporting that assertion.

As for Sansa killing Littlefinger, we'll see. I doubt it, The foreshadowing would certainly points to her as his down fall. But all that needs to happen is for word to get out that Littlefinger is hiding her. Then again, Martin subverts tropes so Sansa bringing down littlefinger seems a really obvious way to do it.

I'm way more worried about the Blackfish really, if that guy shows up with Lysa out the moon door... Littlefinger would have some 'splainin to do.

But I agree Littlefinger shoud just kill Sansa and get rid of her, she's not worth having around from a risk/reward perspective.
Chris Nelly
536. Aeryl
I don't have anything specific, other than the fact that he's pretty much a non-entity in the story. It seems a bit of a rip off to give the "spoils" so to speak to a kid we've barely gotten to know, or a baby we haven't met at all.

For the investment in the story to pay off, our "heroes" must come out of this with something.
537. GarrettC
"... you will definitely hear more of Jeyne Westerling."
Well then. Very good. Yes.

Thanks. Interesting stuff.
Adam S.
538. MDNY
I think I've said this before, but it bears repeating. Even though Bran is technically the Lord of Winterfell (and the North), the odds are looking very low that he will return to claim his seat. However, we know from Jojen's green dreams that the Starks "will return" to Winterfell. Starks indicates a male progenitor restarting the line. Not Sansa, obviously not Arya, not Jon (who thankfully refused Stannis' offer of legitimization). Stark means Bran or Rickon. I don't see Bran returning, and if he does I don't see how he could have children with his paralysis (it may be possible, but unlikely given the low level of technology in this world, and I'm pretty sure he is fully paralyzed below the waist, including certain...sensitive areas). So that really leaves Rickon, who otherwise has not served much purpose in the story, as the best hope for the continuation of the Stark line and the fulfillment of Jojen's dream. Though I would love to see Bran and Meera end up as lord and lady of Winterfell.
@533 Sansa has to snap at some point. She may always be somewhat of an idiot, but she will either slip up, someone will recognize her, or she'll have enough of Littlefinger's bullsh*t and get rid of him somehow, hopefully in as painful a way as possible (though most likely someone else will eventually arrive to settle that story arc). Arya has become quite the little sociopath, but she's still my second favorite character (after Tyrion). I agree that her going on a rampage, and, say, offing everyone left on her list would be awesome. With Nymeria and her superwolfpack.
539. Gold for Petyr
@ 536. Aeryl:

1) Who said there were any heroes

2) If there are Heroes I don't think we agree on who those Heroes are... My "Heroe" is ruler of the Vale and the Riverlands.

3) I don't think ruling the North is any kind of prize in the first place. I mean Arya is a facless man, I'd like to see her rule the 7 kingdoms not take over her dad's old job. Rickon taking over is a way to free up Arya to do something interesting without killing off the Stark line.
Chris Nelly
540. Aeryl
I take offense at Sansa's implied idiocy. She's naive, but far from stupid. Once she learns a lesson, she learns it well. For all her fear, she learned to play Joffrey well. Tyrion was the only one who saw through it.

I don't know why you think "the Starks" has to mean the boys. You have proof down in Dorne that it's perfectly acceptable and possible for a family line to continue through women. If Sansa never marries, she keeps her name and passes it down. And Dany's arrival means all the old rules will go out the window. So I don't hold to the idea, that just because NOW, that's the way things are, that that's they way they will stay.
541. Gold for Petyr
@538. MDNY Ramsay Bolton is Lord of Winterfell and Roose Bolton is lord of the North.

Have considered that the Arc will be settle when Littlefinger takes his rightful place on the Iron Throne?

P.S. Scociopath is a word without a definition. I don't know why people insist upon using it. What is it supposed to mean? She killed home people? Who hasn't in this series.
Chris Nelly
542. Aeryl
If you think Arya's going to complete her training, you are reading the wrong books, IMO.

They WILL ask her to do something that conflicts with her identity she's buried, she'll dig up Needle and be gone.

And your hero will be dead. I'm subsituting "heroes" for "major POV characters who we've traveled with for years". If those characters are usurped, so BABIES can have crowns, I WILL actually throw these books(cuz no I'm not one of those who did that at the RW, I applauded)
543. Gold for Petyr
@540. Aeryl:

Its not implied. She's an idiot. He said it. And she is.

Like Joffrey's not a fucking moron. All she does is repeat the samething over and over, which as Sandor pointed out, she's a well trained parrot.

I don't agree that Stark means male. But Sansa Lannister has to be married for her to have an heir. Now she could have a consort of some kind I guess, though that isn't how the rules normally work, the descendants of females who inheret are in the family of the male, based on what we've seen.

Now personally I just want Sansa to die already but if I didn't hate her, ruling the North is a shitty fate. Robb and Ned were only interesting because they were in the south fight lannisters. I would be pissed if Arya ended up stuck in Winterfell.
544. Gold for Petyr
@542. Aeryl:

Well first of all I think you misunderstand the faceless men, I don't think they actually force their people to forget their indentity. Obviously the waif has not the hansome clearly has some personality ect.

I think the test is that the facless men should not be able to tell whether a candidate is lying or not. You don't need to suppress your personality, you need to be able to fool other people. That's the actual job requirement of an assassin.

Second, I think Arya is already a faceless man as far as I'm concerned. Finish her training? What the fuck does that even mean? She'll be able to go around killing people. Do I think she'll have undying loyalty to the faceless men? No, I don't know that the other faceless men have never ending loyalty either. I doubt that they do, they could just leave whenver they want and change their face.

Usurped? Rickon has always been ahead of Sansa and Arya in the line of succession. And again, its no freaking price. The North is a desolation, they lost an entire army and a huge chunk of the harvest. Who the fuck would want it?
Adam S.
545. MDNY
@541 Sociopathy, sociopath, sociopathic, etc.. are actually defined words. Generally linked to antisocial personality disorder, it is defined by individuals who exhibit behavioral patterns that are contrary to the usual moral and ethical standards of their society (like joining a clan of assassins), poor behavioral control (repeatedly stabbing a man over and over, running through the cellar of a castle chasing a cat till you get lost), impulsivity, poor judgment control, and an inability to assume responsibility. While Arya may not fully qualify (unlike Joff, who was really more full-on psycopath in some ways), she definitely is borderline and has some real serious mental issues. Trust me, I'm a doctor, even if I don't play one on TV.
546. Gold for Petyr
riiight antisocial personality disorder is defined. Sociopathy is no longer in the DSM. People usually mean either ASPD or psychopathy*.

People just mean the person is amoral or immoral.

Which, is a fine argument, though in Westeros it seems perfectly acceptable kill people left and right. There's nothing about Arya that makes the term apply to her as opposed any lord in Westeros. Which makes her non-deviant anyway.

Its a non meaningful assertion. Just say she's not nice.

*when people say psychopathic, they usually mean sadistic. Which is not what you mean in this case.
Chris Nelly
547. Aeryl
I understand perfectly what Faceless Man means. It means that her loyalty to death MUST supercede all other loyalties. For know, they are willing to wait her out, in the belief that she will eventually come around.

They will ask her to do something that is antithetical to her deeper loyalties, and she will forgo further training. No matter what they do, they won't get the wolf's blood out of her.

I still don't understand this obsession that any woman has to be in a legitimate marriage to have children(you do know biology doesn't require that, right)?

The entire point of this story is to say "Look at this fucked up world, these are things that make it fucked up, now watch as we overturn them all". So why anyone believe that what was required before, a legitimately married woman giving birth to a man's desired offspring for inheritance, is STILL going to be required later is beyond me.

Also, she's not Sansa Lannister, it's not a legitimate marriage, it was never consumated. And LF will be dead before the marriage to Harry the Heir materializes.
548. Gold for Petyr
@547. Aeryl:

Yeah. I don't think that's what the faceless men are like. How would the enforce it when their people scattered all over the world and can change their identity at will?

It has nothing to do with it being a woman. People think children have to be "legitimate" because those are the rules as we know them in Westeros. The rules could change but until then we just assume they'll be the same. Roose Bolton had to get an excemption from the king for his bastard. Stannis didn't try to put Edric Storm on the throne, even though he's known to be Robert's son.

Hell will freeze over before a marriage to Hairry the Heir materializes so yeah, littlefinger and sansa will both be dead by then.
549. Ibid
@535 Gold for Petyr

"I'm way more worried about the Blackfish really, if that guy shows up
with Lysa out the moon door... Littlefinger would have some 'splainin to do"

I'm not sure I follow you on this. If it seems that most of the Vale has accepted his version of Lysa's "flight," why would the Blackfish have anything more to say about it? There were only four people in the room. And surely Lysa Tully was absolutely no friend at all of Sansa's.

By the way, what ever happened to the singer? I can't remember. I feel like he was paid off rather than executed. I think it was implied that he was allowed to live/escape, but that seems sloppy on LF's part.
550. Gold for Petyr
Littlefinger, actively worked for the Lannisters. Was named to the Blackfishes's family's birthright (liege lord of the riverlands). Littlefinger married Lysa and she turns up dead in like a week and now littlefinger is lord of two kingdoms? And he has Sansa hanging around looking like Catelyn and being creeped on?

I think the Blackfish would take one look at Petyr, call bullshit and kill him.
Chris Nelly
551. Aeryl
Merillon? They cut his tongue out, I remember that.
552. Ibid
@550 At the risk of sounding like a troll...

Littlefinger worked for the crown, not the Lannisters. No, he wasn't given Riverrun, that went to Genna Lannister's husband (a Frey, can't remember the first name). LF was given Harrenhal.

Though you raise an interesting point about SansAlayne. Would the Blackfish recognize her as Catelyn's daughter, even though he has ever seen her--at least not since she was an infant (if at all)?
553. Gold for Petyr
You really think the Blackfish would make the distinctions between the crown and the lannisters? or that Littlefinger only has the Liege Lordship of the Riverlands stripped from the Tullys but not Riverrun itself?

The Blackfish raised the kids, Catelyn said. So yeah, I think he's recognize a young Catelyn in Sansa's face and know it wasn't Littlefinger's daughter and who she must be.
554. Aerona Greenjoy
@551: The de-tonguing by Joffrey's order happened to Marillion in the show but a nameless singer in the books. Book Marrillion was blinded and lost a few fingers, but his tongue was left intact for confessing his "crime" to Nestor Royce. He was then returned to a sky cell but his voice vanished, so he's generally believed to have jumped or fallen. (I just checked the Wiki). He could be alive and able to talk if someone smuggled him out of the Eyrie, but I don't know who would do that or why.

I've wondered what conclusions Myranda Royce drew from getting Sansa to reveal that she knew the name of Ned's bastard. Could be a red herring, or could lead to something.
Marty Beck
555. martytargaryen
@TBGH (main thread@3) - I am still pissed off at my brother. I was through AGOT when he decided it didn't matter that I knew that Tyrion survived book 3, and spoiled me. All that tenstion was diluted !!
All I had going into these scenes was "how was Tyrion going to survive".. UGH! I want my ignorance back!!

That is why I am so sensitive to spoiling people and don't post much on the main thread.

(edited for clarity)
Chris Nelly
556. Aeryl
@555, We have a new spoiler thread.
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