three-eyed monkey

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About three-eyed monkey

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    Spanker of one-eyed monkey.

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    ASoIaF, LotR, Dune, Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?, The Catcher in the Rye, Lord of the Flies, Fight Club, 1984, Watchmen, Heart of Darkness, Brave New World, A Picture of Dorian Gray, I Am Legend, The Road, Cloud Atlas, and ASoIaF.

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  1. I think the case for Theon Durden is extremely weak. Certainly Theon is struggling with his identity, and traumatised, etc. But there is nothing in the books that supports a fight club like split. Besides, the hooded man is Halis Mollen, who has returned to Winterfell with Ned's bones as part of the contingent from White Harbour.
  2. The letter does fit Stannis arc. A character's arc is driven by whatever that character desires, and what Stannis desires has been made clear in the text several times. Stannis states quite clearly that he needs Jon to be his loyal Lord of Winterfell and Warden of the North, so part of Stannis arc must be his attempt to satisfy that need. We also know that Stannis has a desire to win the Freefolk to his cause. This desire drove him to take a significant risk in ignoring the laws of the Seven Kingdoms and saving Mance using subterfuge. Wining the Wildlings to his cause naturally comes hand-in-hand with a desire for peace between the Willings and the North, and we know Stannis has plans for Val in that regard. So when we piece together the clues we are given in the text then a picture of what Stannis wants clearly emerges. He wants a legitimised son of Eddard Stark to be his loyal Lord of Winterfell, Val to be his Lady Stark to seal a peace between the Wildlings and the North, and presumably Mance to play some part in binding the Wildlings to the cause as well. As I have said, we have seen Stannis use subterfuge to get what he wants, most notably in the case of burning "Mance." We have also seen Stannis use letters, in the cases of the incest letter, the letters to the northern lords demanding homage, and the letter to Jon from Deepwood Motte, so Stannis is clearly someone who, like Tywin Lannister, believes a lot can be accomplished with the pen. So when you put Stannis' clearly stated desires alongside his use of subterfuge and his political use of the pen, then you get the Pink Letter. Neither Ramsay or Mance give us anything as compelling in their arcs by comparison. I don't believe the letter was altered at the Wall for a couple of reasons. Firstly, it would essentially mean Jon never received a letter from Stannis, Ramsay, or Mance, but rather received a letter from someone at the Wall. Altering the letter would be extremely difficult. Much better to write a new letter on a new piece of parchment, which gives you the freedom to write whatever you want. So if the original letter, which I agree was read at the Wall before it was delivered to Jon, does not convey the message you want then you must compose a letter that does deliver the message you want, which means it is essentially a different letter, which means you are essentially arguing that Marsh, Thorne, Mel or whoever wrote the letter, loosely based on an original letter from Stannis, Ramsay, or Mance. Secondly, I believe every line in the letter has a clear purpose when viewed from Stannis point of view, and every person mentioned in the letter has a clear value when viewed from Stannis point of view, and that is not something that can be said for Mance, Ramsay, or anyone else in my opinion. So I remain at Stannis 100%.
  3. I think it does fit his arc, and I don't think there are any logistical considerations, but we can continue that debate in the Stannis thread.
  4. I agree there are lots of ideas about Mance writing the letter, just nothing solid in terms of motive, means or opportunity. Theories that promote Mance as the writer always require the evidence to be supplemented with supposition, often with suppositions built on supposition, like Mance might have escaped, and he might have had an alliance with the Northern houses, and he might have written the letter before hand, and if we add up all these mights then we might see how Mance might have written the letter, maybe, even if we might not yet have been given the information we need to understand why he wrote the letter. And if that's wrong, then he might have just glamoured Ramsay or he might have control of Winterfell. I agree that Mance may very well have evaded capture, I even think it likely that Mance's Rattleshirt glamour ruby was involved, and I agree that the Northern Houses are conspiring against the Boltons. But Mance writing the Pink Letter is too much of a stretch for me. The evidence does not fit because in Mance it is being applied to the wrong person.
  5. This is a good question to which there are two plausible answers. In my opinion it is very plausible that Stannis already has his own ravens. Communication is vital to any military campaign, and Stannis is a renowned and experienced military commander. There is no mention of ravens in Stannis baggage train, but considering Stannis is leaving a garrison at Castle Black, including this queen, daughter, and Melisandre, and given Castle Black would have a lot of ravens trained for Castle Black that are of no further use once they arrive, then I don't find it too much of a stretch to assume that Stannis brought ravens with him. We know he is no stranger to writing letters, and has turned to the pen on several occasions already, so it seems a reasonable assumption to me. But as the text makes no mention of ravens in Stannis baggage train, then personally I am inclined to think that the letter was sent from Winterfell, seven days after Theon I, by which time Stannis has control of the castle.
  6. GRRM said Theon I TWoW took place before some of the events at the end of ADwD. We know it took place after Asha's last chapter, and there is not really any other chapter at the end of ADwD that it is relevant to. We also know that Theon I, and indeed the Battles of Ice and Fire, were initially meant to be part of ADwD but got bumped because of size. I'm not sure if it has ever been clarified where those bumped chapters would have fit into the original order of chapters. Presumably Jon XIII was always intended to be Jon's last chapter in ADwD, and we can take it that Asha's last chapter was not meant to be the last chapter from the Stannis arc in ADwD, so it is very possible that we would have gotten more from the Stannis camp, such as Theon I TWoW, before we got Jon's final chapter.
  7. @The Fattest Leech Hey, thanks. I gotta check your thread out. I found JQC's thread, her analysis is always great. Gimme a chance to catch up on your thread and I'll hit you back. I'm only starting to get my head around the Val stuff. But the 'Wildling Princess" is clearly relevant to the pink letter mystery, and relevant to Stannis too.
  8. There is a logical reason it would have entered GRRM's mind, and that is if he was writing the letter as a forgery and leaving clues to that regard, which I believe is the case. GRRM is great at leaving clues in my opinion, even if the great man himself thinks he got in wrong with the books' central mystery. Often mystery writers say that the hardest part of designing a mystery is designing the clues. But my point is that clues are designed and if we examine them we can see that design. GRRM could have given Ramsay any type of hand writing. He made a decision to give him a large spiky hand, and I think it is a good choice because it reflects Ramsay's character in a way. Ramsay's hand is described by both Jon and Asha in what is a purposeful set up of Ramsay's hand writing, because like most set ups it is repeated at least once to strengthen the association in the reader's mind. Spiky Hand equals Ramsay. GRRM could have used that device to clarify that the letter was from Ramsay simply by adding the words "a large spiky hand". But instead he chose to omit the device because he is not trying to clarify that the letter is from Ramsay, he is trying to leave a clue for the reader. The same could be said for the wax. So often we have read of letters sealed with a hard button of wax, so when we read of a smear of wax instead, the association is broken and we know something is wrong, even if we cannot quite put our finger on it sometimes.
  9. I agree with @The Fattest Leech. Stannis, regardless of whether you believe he wrote the pink letter or not, seems to want to see them together. He wants Jon as his loyal Lord of Winterfell, a son of Eddard Stark to rally the North to his cause etc. And he has plans for Val, as Sam reveals, to be the mortar that seals a peace between the North and the Freefolk, which obviously means ha wants Val to marry an important northern lord. No house is more important in the North than House Stark. So Stannis, a Jon/Val shipper, confirmed.
  10. I just wanted to take the point about Val a step further, thanks again to the point made by @The Fattest Leech. It would seem to me that if we combine Stannis vision for Jon, a Lord of Winterfell that will win the North to his cause, and his vision for Val, someone who will seal a peace between the North and the Freefolk, then he might well consider Val to be the future Lady Jon Stark of Winterfell.
  11. Ya, what subforum should this type of topic be in? I was curious to see if there were any threads on the reports that both books are close to completion. Seems too good to be true, so it probably is. ASoIaF readers have had the optimism beaten out of us over the yeas perhaps. Lol.
  12. Ok, thanks guys. I respect your positions, and even if we disagree I hope I made a case that shows the idea of Stannis as the author is not as ridiculous as some people think.
  13. I'm not disagreeing that there is an implicit motive. I'm simply saying that I find it strange that the motive is not explicit. Take a closely related part of the plot for example, Bowen Marsh's stabbing of Jon. From a storytelling point of view it works because Bowen Marsh's motive has been set up explicitly, not just implicitly. Marsh clearly states his position in relation to the Wildlings and Jon siding with Stannis. We know how the crown feel about Jon because that was explicitly stated by Cersei, Pycelle, and Swyft. So the stabbing is driven by a series of motives that are actually clearly expressed in the text. The collision of these motives is what essentially drives the plot, throughout the whole series, so I think it makes more sense for the motive of the letter's author also to be expressed explicitly and not just implied, like the example of the Red Wedding you mentioned.
  14. He's about to make a major leap up the line though, considering the number of Freys that are likely to die in TWoW. At least 34 by the look of it.
  15. So let me get this straight, Ramsay rides out sometime after the Freys and Manderlys, comes upon the aftermath of the battle and is misinformed by Manderlys or Karstarks who have switched sides and present him with the sword and Lord Karstarks head which they say is Stannis, they tell him they already sent someone after Arya, Ramsay accepts this, rides back to Winterfell, writes the letter? Is that an accurate summary of your position? If who wrote the letter was never meant to be in question then GRRM would have made that very clear by including one reason more of the characteristics of Ramsay's letters, which he had previously set up. No one disputes that Jon has the wildling army. The point the OP made was that the author of the letter, without knowing about the wildling army, could never have expected Jon to ride south given the news of Stannis' defeat and the hopelessness of the situation. You disagreed with that your earlier post, even if you were not replying directly to the op. But now It seems you are leaning towards the letter being a pretext for Ramsay to come and get Jon, unless of course Jon comes to Ramsay, which the OP says the author could not expect. I did say from a literary point of view the motive has not been set up, and by that I mean there has been no explicit text that promotes the idea. And that is something beyond dispute. There has been ample opportunity in the course of the story for GRRM to tell the reader how the Boltons feel about Jon and what risk he might pose, as a bastard bound to the Wall. But not once did GRRM take this opportunity, preferring to leave it implicit instead, which measures poorly against the 3 times he explicitly set up Stannis motive toward Jon across 2 books.