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What if Theon didn't conquer Winterfell?


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#1 bloodsteel bitterraven

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Posted 08 September 2013 - 02:28 PM

I was wondering how different the story would have been if Theon didn't go to Winterfell after reaving the Stony Shore. Lets assume that after he throws that idea out there, someone tells him that it would be a suicide mission.

Many things would obviously be very different. When Balon died for example, would Damphair support Theon? The main reason he didn't want Asha on the throne was because she was a woman but if one of Balon's sons who worshipped the Drowned God was alive, Damphair would have supported him and so would Victarion I think. I'm not sure what Asha would have done since Balon wanted her to succeed him, not Theon. Do they go to war against Euron, and if so does he stand a chance?

If Theon becomes King of the Iron Islands does he do things differently than his father? We saw that Asha despite obeying her father, disagreed with him on the war as evidenced by what she said at the Kingsmoot. Does he for example offer his support to Robb Stark in exchange for the North's western shore?

Also, Ramsay would still be Rodrick Cassel's captive at Winterfell and believed to be dead by Roose. Does this affect the Red Wedding at all?

Finally what about Bran? Does he still want to go North and meet the three eyed crow? The Reeds would surely encourage him but with ser Rodrick and Maester Luwin there he might not have many opportunities to leave. And he also takes the "There's always a Stark in Winterfell" thing seriously (but even if he left, there would still be Rickon).

Thoughts?

Edited by frogeaters, 08 September 2013 - 02:31 PM.


#2 Nymeriawolf

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Posted 08 September 2013 - 02:36 PM

If Theon didn't take Winterfell Bran and Rickon would not be thought to be dead and so would Robb as it was the moment that he found out about them that he slept with Jeyne so therefore would not have betrayed the Freys and no red wedding.

Edited by Nymeriawolf, 08 September 2013 - 02:37 PM.


#3 bloodsteel bitterraven

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Posted 08 September 2013 - 02:40 PM

Good point. Also Catelyn would not have released Jaime in desperation of seeing her daughters again.

#4 Victor227

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Posted 08 September 2013 - 02:40 PM

Even if Robb still did mess up in the south, the Red Wedding still isn't likely. So long as the Starks hold Winterfell, they hold the North. Of course, Bolton may have come up with something else to get Rodrick to abandon the castle, as that guy was about as smart a castellan as a bag of rocks.

#5 bloodsteel bitterraven

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Posted 08 September 2013 - 02:44 PM

I was thinking that even if the Boltons and the Freys still betrayed Robb Stark, Jaime Lannister would have remained Brynden Tully's captive at Riverrun.

#6 Marco

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Posted 08 September 2013 - 02:45 PM

Robb would be alive. And ruling the north as King.

And we don't know Euron, it seems he doesn't interest in North, they could be ally.

Edited by Marco, 08 September 2013 - 02:47 PM.


#7 juanml82

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Posted 08 September 2013 - 03:06 PM

Asha wasn't interested in the North either, but I don't see Robb accepting any alliance with Theon after the Ironborn attacked the North. Well, or maybe perhaps if Theon grew a brain and convinced him he had no say in the matter (which is true). Also, without Winterfell, he had a marginal role in the attack.
But I can not possibly see Theon or Asha agreeing to attack the Arbor. Or, at least, doing so without first destroying the Redwyne Fleet in a similar fashion to the attack against the Lannister Fleet in the First Greyjoy Rebellion.
With the Greyjoys under the same agreement, some storylines could end up merged: Euron convinces Theon to fetch Daennerys, he reaches early somehow, but it's spurned by Daennerys like Quentyn. They both go to get a dragon and both get burned to death due their idiocity.

#8 bloodsteel bitterraven

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Posted 08 September 2013 - 03:13 PM

Asha wasn't interested in the North either, but I don't see Robb accepting any alliance with Theon after the Ironborn attacked the North. Well, or maybe perhaps if Theon grew a brain and convinced him he had no say in the matter (which is true). Also, without Winterfell, he had a marginal role in the attack.
But I can not possibly see Theon or Asha agreeing to attack the Arbor. Or, at least, doing so without first destroying the Redwyne Fleet in a similar fashion to the attack against the Lannister Fleet in the First Greyjoy Rebellion.
With the Greyjoys under the same agreement, some storylines could end up merged: Euron convinces Theon to fetch Daennerys, he reaches early somehow, but it's spurned by Daennerys like Quentyn. They both go to get a dragon and both get burned to death due their idiocity.


Asha wanted to make a deal with the North and keep the stony shore which was sparsely populated but could be of use to the Ironborn.

#9 juanml82

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Posted 08 September 2013 - 03:16 PM

Asha wanted to make a deal with the North and keep the stony shore which was sparsely populated but could be of use to the Ironborn.

Well, yes. What I mean is, she wasn't interested in continue the war in the North.

But then again, why would Robb agree? Once the Ironborn retreat for the kingsmoot and without the sacking of Winterfell/Ramsay's betrayal, the North has enough forces to repel the Ironborn left in the North. Maybe to prevent a second Ironborn offensive?

#10 Bright Blue Eyes

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Posted 08 September 2013 - 03:42 PM

Ser Rodrik Cassel would have gathered more men, kicked Asha out of Deepwood Motte and Victarion out of Moat Cailin. The latter would probably rather die than flee.
Neither Robb nor Cat would be griefstricken enough to do something as stupid as marrying Jeyne or releasing the Kingslayer.
With continued success, the Vale would have joined the Starks in the Riverlands, clearing house and pushing the war into the Westerlands and the Crownlands solely. The Riverlords would have time and space to reorganize and put another army into the field.
Jon Snow would have access to a couple ten thousand Northern soldiers, enough ressources to feed the Wall, dragonglass and with the backing of Winterfell, no problems with Marsh and his cronies.
With the Starks strong and the Kingslayer in captivity, the Red Wedding wouldn't have happened, not even close. Nor Duskendale.
Stannis would continue to sit on Dragonstone and in the Stormlands, slowly gathering additional Stormlords to his cause and presenting a dagger in the Lannister-Tyrell back as well as blocking KL's trade.
Balon would lose authority and the Ironborn may start reaving the entire western coast in small groups, harming Lannister and Tyrell as well as the Starks.
The Purple Wedding and Tywin's death would have wrecked the Tyrell-Lannister alliance, everybody would start looking to secure their share of the cake instead of trying to uphold the Iron Throne.

#11 Masamune

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Posted 08 September 2013 - 03:45 PM

In other words: F**k Theon and the squid he rode in on.

#12 KingofSothoryos

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Posted 08 September 2013 - 05:36 PM

If Theon doesn't take Winterfell, the Ironborn invasion would have been a simple reaving like they've done thousands of times for thousands of years instead of the huge clusterfuck it precipitated. Robb probably would be on the Iron Throne by now.

Robb probably would have taken Casterly Rock and Lannisport as Tywin was turned back by Edmure Tully at the Battle of the Fords. Tywin would have rushed to Kings Landing to meet up with the Tyrells and beat back Stannis to protect the throne. After the Battle of the Blackwater, Tywin would have to decide how to take back the West as losing the West would be a great slight on the Lannister name he has worked so hard to elevate. Thus, Tywin wouldnt have been so triumphant and he wouldnt have been able to broker the Frey and Bolton treachery at the RW. The Riverlands would have been consolidated under Robb and Tully rule with the Frey alliance intact and no Lannister host outside of KL.

Basically the Northmen would have easily repelled the Ironmen with all the fighting men that are coming out of the woodwork to back Stannis and the Boltons now. A couple of ravens from Winterfell would have raised at least 5000 men from the North to fight the Ironmen once it was understood that this was an invasion. My only question is if White Harbor finished building its fleet, would Robb used them to invade the Iron Islands and how do they get those ships to the west coast of Westeros. There is no way to sail them south past Dragonstone, through the Stepstones around the Arbor and the Sheilds, all enemy territory with fleets of their own. But knowing the Northmen, I see them carrying them over land. This would make Robb, King of the North, The Riverlands, the Iron Islands and the Westerlands. With Joffrey, King of the Crownlands, the Stormlands, the Reach and Dorne.

This is where it gets interesting. Knowing now the Vale has stayed out of the War because LF is calling the shots, how does this change his plans? Does he continue his assassination of Joffrey with the Tyrells? Do the Tyrells go through with it? Of course, he wouldn't have been named Lord of Harrenhal, with Robb having cleared out the Lannisters from the Riverlands, so he wouldn't have been able to marry Lysa, thus he wouldn't have killed her because he'd need her to make the Vale do what he wants. But if he went through with the assassination, he would probably just deliver Sansa to Robb and get Lysa to join Robb. He probably could deliver the Tyrells as well, who wouldn't push for Margerey to marry Tommen after Joffrey's dead, as Tyrells obviously have no love for Lannisters. Would they push Robb to break his bethroval to the Freys in order for Robb to marry Margerey? Or would Martells want Robb to marry Alianne to secure Dorne? The Lannisters would be isolated with only their marriage alliance with Dorne through Myrcella, but she would be more of a hostage and Dorne would be happy to turn on the Lannisters for what they did to Elia. This is how Robb could get to the Iron Throne, starting with the North, reclaiming the the Riverlands, conquering the Westerlands and the Iron Islands, brokering alliances through LF with the Vale and the Reach and allying with Dorne. I don't see the Stormlands backing the Lannisters with everyone else siding with Robb, especially since the story of Lannister incest would have the honor of the Starks behind it, so they will know Tommen is not a Baratheon. Stannis would be an afterthought as he would be stuck on Dragonstone with no Wall to run to.

i just dont know what happens when the NW sends a raven to Robb saying there is a wildling host moving towards the Wall and confirmed sightings of wights and whitewalkers? But if Stannis turned back The Wildling host with 2 or 3000 men, I'm sure those Northmen who threw back the Ironmen could have defeated the wildlings while Robb fought in the South.

As you can see, if Theon doesn't take Winterfell, Robb would more than likely have won the War of the Five Kings and won the Iron Throne. The question is would Robb want the Iron Throne? I see him taking the West and the Iron Islands for invading the North, but I see him allowing Stannis to be King of the Stormlands. i know, he'd die before giving up his claim to all 7 Kingdoms. Maybe he'll kill Stannis in battle but marry Bran to Shireen (two broken children) to rule the Stormlands. He'd let the Reach and Dorne be independent and keep his bethroval to the Freys, since a Stark keeps his word. He could marry Arya to Tristan Tyrell to secure the alliance with Dorne and marry Sansa to Willis or Edmure to Margerey to secure the alliance with Reach.

Edited by KingofSothoryos, 08 September 2013 - 05:44 PM.


#13 Mrs.Grumpy

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Posted 08 September 2013 - 05:39 PM

*sigh* Why does no one ever listen Cat? /crying.gif' class='bbc_emoticon' alt=':crying:' />

#14 Born Sinner

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Posted 08 September 2013 - 05:44 PM

Why do you think Robb wouldn't marry Jeyne ( haha Mary Jane) ? I think he would still do it and that was the main reason for Walder Frey to kill Robb. But with Winterfell still being there I think Roose Bolton wouldn't switch sides.

#15 Lord Spark of House Spark

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Posted 08 September 2013 - 05:52 PM

Because she was always just so damn irritating that whatever she did say people would have found it so grating wether it was good advice or not.

That's what I think anyway.

Edit: I was replying to prince of thorns' post here, talking about CAT

Edited by Lord Spark of House Spark, 08 September 2013 - 05:54 PM.


#16 Bright Blue Eyes

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Posted 08 September 2013 - 06:01 PM

Why do you think Robb wouldn't marry Jeyne ( haha Mary Jane) ? I think he would still do it and that was the main reason for Walder Frey to kill Robb. But with Winterfell still being there I think Roose Bolton wouldn't switch sides.

Because without Bran and Rickon "dying", Robb wouldn't need comfort while in the Crag. No sex, no honor to protect, no marriage.

#17 Born Sinner

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Posted 08 September 2013 - 06:17 PM

Because without Bran and Rickon "dying", Robb wouldn't need comfort while in the Crag. No sex, no honor to protect, no marriage.

I think it would have happen at some point but maybe not with Jeyne. I think Robb just wanted to choose who he gets to marry and not marry for political purposes especially if its a Frey girl

#18 Pod The Impaler

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Posted 08 September 2013 - 06:33 PM

If Theon doesn't take Winterfell, here's what happens:

Winterfell is never taken, Bran and Rickon are not believed killed. Robb Stark is never seen as the King Who Lost The North, and the Boltons, Freys do not plot against him in their defeatism. And as Catelyn does not go mad with grief and release the Kingslayer, Robb retains his major hostage, Lord Karstark is not executed, nor do the Karstark forces depart.

Tywin Lannister will have a harder time disengaging from his battles in the North, because although the Neck and a few other places may have been taken by the Ironborn, the loss of the northern capital and Robb's heirs is not a crippling blow. Winterfell and White Harbour together can probably call up enough reserves to re-take Moat Cailin from the rear. This means Tywin does not have the ability to disengage from battling the North and be free and clear to aid King's Landing. If Robb's host stays back, it can retake the North or attack the Westerlands with nothing to stop them. But more likely, Robb can pursue Tywin and the battle for King's Landing destroys the Lannister army instead of Stannis' forces. (This is why the Ironborn assault on Winterfell saved the Lannisters. Freeing up Tywin's host was a far worse blow than Edmure's stopping him at the Red Fork.) In any case, the war goes much worse for the Lannisters, and Jaime still a captive.

Whatever the result with that, Stannis probably does not go to the Wall either. What this means for the Night's Watch is anyone's guess, but the savior of the Watch may end up being Robb, or even Bran w. Rodrik Cassel.)

Sansa Stark, on the other hand, will still be in great danger - if the Lannisters' armies were defeated, and Joffrey about to fall, Cersei might kill Sansa regardless of Jaime being a hostage, just out of spite.

Bran and Rickon being alive also means Theon and Robb do not have to be mortal enemies. Theon still hasn't gone so far that he cannot make peace. Robb may understand that Balon was his Theon's father and king, and had to be obeyed. If Balon still gets killed by Euron, this may nullify the attack on the North if Euron still seeks to take over.

Edited by Pod The Impaler, 08 September 2013 - 06:33 PM.


#19 KingofSothoryos

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Posted 08 September 2013 - 07:53 PM

I think Euron heard that Theon was dead and thats why he hired the FM to kill Balon, since he was next in succession. If Theon never took Winterfell, Euron wouldn't have killed Balon or he would have killed both Balon and Theon!

#20 bloodsteel bitterraven

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Posted 08 September 2013 - 08:56 PM

I think I agree that Euron would have killed Theon. After Theon and Damphair return to the iron islands, Theon hangs around trying to win his fathers trust. When Balon dies, Theon sits on the throne. Euron arrives and accuses Theon of killing Balon. Theon is killed and Euron has a good story to tell Damphair.

Can someone btw remind me why Robb didnt hold onto the Westerlands he conquered?