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About hiemal

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    Ser Spitball

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    Wearing the mask and ring of tinfoil at the Citadel

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  1. Me too. Go back a sentence and it ties in the forging of LB as well: "When a smith makes a sword, he thrusts the blade into the fire, beats on it with a hammer, then plunges it into iced water to temper the steel."...ADwD I think this could be a linchpin underlying the fundamental symbolism of the Song.
  2. "If you would savor the sweet taste of the fruit, you must water the tree." "This tree has been watered with blood."... ADwD The sapling growing in the Nightfort seems to point in this direction.
  3. I am enthralled by it. Dragons make woe and not wine, but like the volcanic eruptions I theorize spawned them, they leave fertile ground watered by blood in their wake. Which allows for the proliferation of weirwoods and begins to tip the balance back the other way.
  4. The thread of Mithraism runs deep in the Song of Ice and Fire and while it is sometimes hard to tell what is deliberate and what is the inevitable accumulation of archetypes and shared mythic contexts I have musing on the placement of the four sacred animals and am going to throw down the crazy on the dog, the scorpion, the bull, and the viper. The rite of Taurumbolis (sp?) is paralleled in Sam's blood bath (although perhaps it fits the rites of Cybele better) and I think the events surrounding the fall of the Targaryen's fit even better. Witness the tinfoil: The Dog: Gregor Clegane. Pretty straightforward- the Mountain falls on Elia and her child. The Scorpion: This one had me for a long time because I was distracted by House Qorgyle until I realized that Amory Lorch's Manticore is nothing but a spiffed-up scorpion and his murder of Rhaenys fits the theme nicely. The Bull: Gerold Hightower, the White Bull. Is it posssible that he had secret orders from Aerys II to eliminate Rhaegar's progeny and Ned's arrival spared our Mithras stand-in an untimely death? Either way, his death fits the Taurumbolis imagery and sets Jon on his path to becoming a symbol of Mystery: "Corn," the bird said, and, "King," and, "Snow, Jon Snow, Jon Snow." ... AFfC Corn King! And finally, the Viper: Where was Oberyn Martell during Robert's Rebllion? Could his brother Lewyn have given him secret information and secret instructions? Could he have been out and about practicing infant mortality? Here comes the crazy: Perhaps Oberyn was at Starfall poisoning Ashara Dayne to induce a miscarriage/stillbirth- possibly on Aerys' orders. If Dawn led to the Daynes the could a Dayne/Stark hybrid bring the Dark? If Young Griff is legitimate, would that throw the symmetry? How about if Oberyn was spiriting a baby away instead of killing it? So much tinfoil...
  5. Find a Penny, pick it up... She could be the first penny he honestly earns? I wonder if Penny is her real name? Tyrion is not only capable of goodness (which is almost universal) but greatness (which isn't). His errors, lapses in judgement, high crimes, and misdemeanors are so dreadful because he is in a position to empathize with outsiders and highborn alike when he chooses to do so and looks beyond his own interests and entitlements and he is smart enough and experienced enough to know better. I think an interesting study could be made contrasting Tyrion and Dany in this- Dany's errors being grander in scope and body count but being perhaps more excusable due to her relative inexperience. Anyways, I like them both. I like almost all of the PoV characters, despite their flaws.
  6. Bonus spitball: The Moon-Pale Maiden is the full moon and the Father of Waters is the tides, her "child" by the Merling King.
  7. Bingo! Thirty different gods stood along the walls, surrounded by their little lights. The Weeping Woman was the favorite of old women, Arya saw; rich men preferred the Lion of Night, poor men the Hooded Wayfarer. Soldiers lit candles to Bakkalon, the Pale Child, sailors to the Moon-Pale Maiden and the Merling King. The Stranger had his shrine as well, though hardly anyone ever came to him. AFfC
  8. That is the Temple of the Moonsingers." It was one of those that Arya had spied from the lagoon, a mighty mass of snow-white marble topped by a huge silvered dome whose milk glass windows showed all the phases of the moon. AFfC Or if you want you can go by the Moon Pool, where the bravos duel at night... AFfC The moon as a sacred symbol comes up again and again in Braavos- and why not since: "The Moonsingers led us to this place of refuge, where the dragons of Valyria could not find us," Denyo said... AFfC The Moon is even found prominently at the House of Black and White: The left-hand door was made of weirwood pale as bone, the right of gleaming ebony. In their center was a carved moon face; ebony on the weirwood side, weirwood on the ebony... Their tall chairs were carved of ebony and weirwood, like the doors of the temple above. The ebon chairs had weirwood faces on their backs, the weirwood chairs faces of carved ebony... AFfC And there is this: "All men must serve." And so she did, three days of every thirty. When the moon was black she was no one, a servant of the Many-Faced God in a robe of black and white. AFfC Spitball: The Many-Faced God is a reference to the many faces (phases) of the Moon. The Faceless Men are associated in particular with the new moon when the Moon's face is hidden. The revolt that led to the founding of Braavos was not spontaneous, but planned in the mines of Valyria by Faceless Men who were already closely tied to the Moonsingers.
  9. I think that Penny is his hope for redemption in that regard. If he can learn to see beyond the enormity of his own shadow...
  10. Making other people feel uncomfortable is pretty small potatoes. I find his own comfort with cold-blooded murder far more problematic. I think there is hope that he can learn to be a better person, however. He is clever, after all. He constantly reminds everyone around him of it.
  11. The horsey color code: I wonder how the Ryswells, the House of 4 different colors (if I might cruelly stretch a pun), relates and how the they relate to human hair and eye colors: We have 4 horse's heads and 4 colors; black, gray, brown, and gold. Death, death-in-life, the commonality, and royalty?
  12. I don't think Bloodraven chose the visions- those come from the weirnet and from Bran himself. I would guess, from her place in the apparent reversed chronology of Bran's visions, that she is from the era of consolidation of Stark power in the North. My guess is that her foe is a Red King of the Dreadfort, although the Warg Kings, Barrow Kings, and even Kings Beyond the Wall could also fill the role. Power from blood. "Fool's blood, king's blood, blood on the maiden's thigh..." ASoS Even burnt blood.
  13. I think there is, although I am still floundering in trying to pin it down. Gray seems to be the color of blurred boundaries- death in life if you will. One of the Frey boys has slain the other, and I wouldn't put money on his surviving the winter.
  14. "She turned her back upon the night, to where Barristan Selmy stood silent in the shadows. "My brother once told me a Westerosi riddle. Who listens to everything yet hears nothing?" "A knight of the Kingsguard." Selmy's voice was solemn."... ADwD This, combined with their vows, does remind me of the Silent Sisters, the Gray order of Death in Life.
  15. That fits. Barrows and runes; preservation and remembrance. And we'll have a barrow of fun! She did gift those freylings with horses so... Tangent on boars: I wonder why the Crakehall boar is brindled?