Angalin

[TWOW SPOILERS] Theon I, part vi

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Bit of a noob, but I'd love for the previous threaded to be linked in the first post of the new thread. That way you can piggyback all the way through, if one is so inclined.

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Theon says in this chapter " "Frey and Manderly will never combine their strengths. They will come for you, but separately. Lord Ramsay will not be far behind them. He wants his bride back. He wants his Reek."



What oddly specific phrasing



"I want my bride back. I want the false king's queen. I want his daughter and his red witch. I want this wildling princess. I want his little prince, the wildling babe. And I want my Reek."



Could just be a coincidence, but could it be evidence in favour of Stannis writing the letter, or even Theon, if "Bael" revealed his identity during their chat?


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Where can I read this chapter please? Is it still online somewhere? Thanks!


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I have two things to bring up. I'm sorry if they are repeats I have skimmed but not scoured vol. i-v of this thread:

How did Theon recognize Stannis's voice? On the first page: "He knew that voice. Stannis." When did Theon Greyjoy and Stannis Baratheon meet? Am I missing something obvious here?

Is there an error?: Stannis did not reply at once. He studied the man before him, his brow furrowed. "Get up." The maester rose. "You are maester at the Dreadfort. How is it you are here with us?"

"Lord Arnolf brought me to tend to his wounded."

How does this make sense? If Tybald was maester at the Dreadfort, why would Arnolf Karstark have brought him? Then again:

"Answer me. If we were to loose these birds, would they return to the Dreadfort?" The king leaned forward. "Or might they fly for Winterfell instead?"

Why would a Karstark raven fly to the Dreadfort if the Karstarks were about to join battle against the Boltons? To send them a pre-battle greeting? Did GRRM mean to write Karhold in both instances? This part always confused me and this may be why...or I'm missing something...help?

Theon would have met Stannis before this scene when he was brought before him. I don´t think that this scene is the first time when Theon is awake in Stannis camp. Crowfood Umber would have brought Theon and "Arya" before Stannis. Being chained up in Stannis´solar, Theon would´ve witnessed quite a lot of Stannis´actions so he would know Stannis voice when he hears it.

I think Tybald was indeed the maester of the Dreadfort. Roose wanted his maester as a spy inside Stannis´ army, so he sent him to Arnolf Karstark so that Tybald could take the alias of the Karhold´s maester.

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What I took from this is:



- Stannis wrote the Pink Letter


- Asha has been swayed by Theon's words about the Old gods knowing his name, which is why she tempts Stannis to execute Theon in front of the Weirwood.


- Theon being executed before the Weirwood is the chance for Bran to come into play, telling Stannis that Theon is innocent..



The thing with the Pink Letter is obvious at this point:


- Dreadfort Maester = Pink wax


- Three crows = Dreadfort, X, and the one to Winterfell already left.. Guess where Crow X is going?


- Theon says he told them everything about the bard and the washerwomen that weren't washerwomen. So Stannis knows about Mance's presence.


- "He wants his bride, he wants his Reek".



Jon lied to Stannis. Stannis isn't the forgiving type.. This letter would either get him his wife and daughter from the wall as he gets done with the North, or at least the Wall..


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What I took from this is:

- Stannis wrote the Pink Letter

- Asha has been swayed by Theon's words about the Old gods knowing his name, which is why she tempts Stannis to execute Theon in front of the Weirwood.

- Theon being executed before the Weirwood is the chance for Bran to come into play, telling Stannis that Theon is innocent..

The thing with the Pink Letter is obvious at this point:

- Dreadfort Maester = Pink wax

- Three crows = Dreadfort, X, and the one to Winterfell already left.. Guess where Crow X is going?

- Theon says he told them everything about the bard and the washerwomen that weren't washerwomen. So Stannis knows about Mance's presence.

- "He wants his bride, he wants his Reek".

Jon lied to Stannis. Stannis isn't the forgiving type.. This letter would either get him his wife and daughter from the wall as he gets done with the North, or at least the Wall..

When? About what? Letting Mance live was more Melisandre's idea than Jon's.

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I have two things to bring up. I'm sorry if they are repeats I have skimmed but not scoured vol. i-v of this thread:

How did Theon recognize Stannis's voice? On the first page: "He knew that voice. Stannis." When did Theon Greyjoy and Stannis Baratheon meet? Am I missing something obvious here?

Is there an error?: Stannis did not reply at once. He studied the man before him, his brow furrowed. "Get up." The maester rose. "You are maester at the Dreadfort. How is it you are here with us?"

"Lord Arnolf brought me to tend to his wounded."

How does this make sense? If Tybald was maester at the Dreadfort, why would Arnolf Karstark have brought him? Then again:

"Answer me. If we were to loose these birds, would they return to the Dreadfort?" The king leaned forward. "Or might they fly for Winterfell instead?"

Why would a Karstark raven fly to the Dreadfort if the Karstarks were about to join battle against the Boltons? To send them a pre-battle greeting? Did GRRM mean to write Karhold in both instances? This part always confused me and this may be why...or I'm missing something...help?

There is sort of a civil war in House Karstark for control. Arnolf Karstark is trying to circumvent the line of passage to gain control of House Karstark and take them to the side of the Boltons. Harry Karstark is the Lord of Karhold, but was captured by the Lannisters. With Harry captured, Arnolf is in control of the Karhold troops. But Arnolf is conspiring with Roose Bolton to have Harry killed. That would make Alys Karstark next in line as the head of Karhold. Arnolf would marry his son to Alys and gain control of Karhold. Alys was being held captive by Arnolf while all this was playing out, but she escaped to the Wall. Alys tells Jon Snow of Arnolf's plans. Jon sends a message to Stannis, which is how Stannis found out, and thus captured Arnolf and Tybald.

As for the ravens, Winterfell is controlled by Ramsay Bolton. If the ravens fly to Winterfell, Arnolf would be exposed as a spy.

If this was explained already... my bad.

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What I took from this is:

- Stannis wrote the Pink Letter

- Asha has been swayed by Theon's words about the Old gods knowing his name, which is why she tempts Stannis to execute Theon in front of the Weirwood.

- Theon being executed before the Weirwood is the chance for Bran to come into play, telling Stannis that Theon is innocent..

The thing with the Pink Letter is obvious at this point:

- Dreadfort Maester = Pink wax

- Three crows = Dreadfort, X, and the one to Winterfell already left.. Guess where Crow X is going?

- Theon says he told them everything about the bard and the washerwomen that weren't washerwomen. So Stannis knows about Mance's presence.

- "He wants his bride, he wants his Reek".

Jon lied to Stannis. Stannis isn't the forgiving type.. This letter would either get him his wife and daughter from the wall as he gets done with the North, or at least the Wall..

I believe all the Ravens go to Winterfell. The raven to the Wall could have come from Jon. Remember Jon sent a raven to Stannis first.

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- Asha has been swayed by Theon's words about the Old gods knowing his name, which is why she tempts Stannis to execute Theon in front of the Weirwood


I'm suspicious. Asha never knew Ned Stark, and the Ironborn have no curiosity about other cultures, so I don't know how she even knows what those trees are called, still less how she thinks she knows what Ned Stark would have done. I don't think that's Asha.



I think she's being warged, either by Bran, or his mentor. Her voice sounds low and unnatural and she is walking funny. It's not her in there. If she's not being warged, then she's a Faceless Man and somehow Theon can see through her. As for what the entity that has taken over Asha really wants, I'm not sure. It could be someone needing to offer a sacrifice to a tree, or it could just be someone trying to get Theon outside to help him escape.


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I believe it's a letter indicating the Karstark betrayal. Jon sent a raven to Deepwood hoping to reach Stannis (black wax), Tycho stopped off at Deepwood before reaching Stannis, and Stannis takes notice of the note before bringing in the maester he intends to question about the Karstarks.

Him knowing the contents of that letter explains his interest/enjoyment later on as he watches Stannis verbally trap the maester (caught!) and physically trap the Karstarks.

I agree.

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What I took from this is:

- Stannis wrote the Pink Letter

- Asha has been swayed by Theon's words about the Old gods knowing his name, which is why she tempts Stannis to execute Theon in front of the Weirwood.

- Theon being executed before the Weirwood is the chance for Bran to come into play, telling Stannis that Theon is innocent..

The thing with the Pink Letter is obvious at this point:

- Dreadfort Maester = Pink wax

- Three crows = Dreadfort, X, and the one to Winterfell already left.. Guess where Crow X is going?

- Theon says he told them everything about the bard and the washerwomen that weren't washerwomen. So Stannis knows about Mance's presence.

- "He wants his bride, he wants his Reek".

Jon lied to Stannis. Stannis isn't the forgiving type.. This letter would either get him his wife and daughter from the wall as he gets done with the North, or at least the Wall..

When? About what? Letting Mance live was more Melisandre's idea than Jon's.

Actually, Jon doesn't even find out until Stannis is gone.

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Actually, Jon doesn't even find out until Stannis is gone.

Does Stannis know that, though?

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this chapter remains the best of all sample chapters


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I'm gonna list some key lines from the chapter and try my best to explain how they prove Ramsey wrote the letter:

"Answer me. If we were to loose these birds, would they return to the Dreadfort?" The king leaned forward. "Or might they fly for Winterfell instead?"

Obviously the implication here is that Maester Tybald has 3 ravens that fly exclusively to Winterfell and has been using them to betray Stannis' location to the Boltons.

The king leaned back in his chair. "Get him out of here," he commanded. "Leave the ravens."

Yes, leave the ravens that only fly to Winterfell, as detailed earlier in this exchange. But why?

"In Braavos you may hear that I am dead. It may even be true."

Also meaning, it may be false. But why would Massey receive false news of Stannis' death? Well:

Your false king is dead, bastard.

The Pink Letter claims that Stannis is dead. It also claims there was a 7 day long battle. Odd that GRRM decided to include detailing the length of the battle. Why is it important for the reader to know? Well, after Roose Bolton get's Tybald's last message, he says:

“Rather than use our swords upon each other, you might try them on Lord Stannis.” Lord Bolton unrolled the parchment. “His host lies not three days’ ride from here"

3 days for the Freys/Manderys to arrive at The Gift, 1 day of a farce of a battle (Manderly's drive the Freys into the frozen lake - more on this later) and to plot on how to prevent Ramsey from following into battle and discovering their ploy (see Dreadfort ravens explanation above), and another 3 days for Stannis' host to reach Winterfell. 3 + 3 + 1 =

He and all his host were smashed in seven days of battle.

How do I know the frozen lake will play a part in the doom of the Freys? Well, from Theon we know:

"Frey and Manderly will never combine their strengths. They will come for you, but separately."

And Roose Bolton orders this:

"Ser Hosteen, assemble your knights and men-at-arms by the main gates. As you are so eager for battle, you shall strike our first blow. Lord Wyman, gather your White Harbor men by the east gate. They shall go forth as well.”

Then we have this piece of information, when Stannis asks Theon if boys killed Aenys Frey. Theon answers:

"Twenty green boys, with spades... The snow fell heavily for days. So heavily that you could not see the castle walls ten yards away, no more than the men up on the battlements could see what was happening beyond those walls. So Crowfood set his boys to digging pits outside the castle gates, then blew his horn to lure Lord Bolton out. Instead he got the Freys. The snow had covered up the pits, so they rode right into them. Aenys broke his neck, I heard, but Ser Hosteen only lost a horse, more's the pity. He will be angry now."
Strangely, Stannis smiled.

What's Stannis smiling about? He's been given an idea, which he begins to explain here:

"We hold the ground, and that I mean to turn to our advantage."
"The ground?" said Theon. "What ground? Here? This misbegotten tower? This wretched little village? You have no high ground here, no walls to hide beyond, no natural defenses."
"Yet."

Then the ravens, who I assume are Bloodraven or Bran, begin to hint at the plan as well:

"Yet," both ravens screamed in unison. Then one quorked, and the other muttered, "Tree, tree, tree."

And where is the tree? Well, later in the chapter, Asha says:

"Take him out across the lake to the islet where the weirwood grows... Give him to the tree."

Aaaand the ravens go bananas.

As far as the heads on the Winterfell walls go, seems fishy *wink wink*. Perhaps we now know the significance of why GRRM had the Manderlys mount "Davos" head on their walls. Fake head mounting seems their style, certainly, and that "evidence" would help the Manderlys' story once they returned to Winterfell to deceive the Boltons and spread word that Stannis was just outside the walls (invisible behind the snow).

All these little "truths" sprinkled throughout the Pink Letter are given substantial support from this chapter, and for me solidifies that Ramsay did indeed write the Pink Letter, just under false pretenses,

Also, consider this:

The king plucked a parchment off the table and squinted over it. A letter, Theon knew. Its broken seal was black wax, hard and shiny. I know what that says, he thought, giggling.

The parchment is a letter from Jon explaining Arnolf's treachery.

"Oh, and take the Stark girl with you. Deliver her to Lord Commander Snow on your way to Eastwatch." Stannis tapped the parchment that lay before him. "A true king pays his debts."

Here we see Stannis ordering Justin Massey to drop "Arya" off at Castle Black before heading off to Eastwatch because, as he explains, "A true king pays his debts."

He felt, even if it was to the most minuscule degree, indebted to Jon. What could possibly be the reason for sending "Arya" to Jon at Castle Black, then turning around and sending a raven (which would undoubtedly travel faster than Massey's company) to Castle Black with a deceptive message? If it was to draw Jon out, why send "Arya" to Castle Black in the first place? If Stannis truly believes he's a "true king", why would he pay his debt with deception? It makes no sense.

Edited by pobeb

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I think Asha has decided that she can't save Theon so goes for the least bad option.



I can see this playing out badly for her later on if Theon is saved by someone else or cleared of his crimes. This is the second time she has given up on him from Theon's point of view. It could be the thing that pushes Theon to ally with Stannis, who would just him as a puppet ruler of the Iron Islands, or Bran, via the weirnet to be his agent in the North, rather than Asha and her plan for a second kingsmoot.


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I think Asha has decided that she can't save Theon so goes for the least bad option.

But why the tree? How does Asha even know about the tree? And why is her voice "strangely deep?" And how would she have any idea "what Ned Stark would have done?" She never met him. Who would have told her all about Ned Stark? She's Ironborn.

I do think Stannis wrote the letter, though, although I'm not at all sure what his plan could possibly be.

Edited by Ladywhiskers

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"Then do the deed yourself, Your Grace." The chill in Asha's voice made Theon shiver in his

chains. "Take him out across the lake to the islet where the weirwood grows, and strike his

head off with that sorcerous sword you bear. That is how Eddard Stark would have done

it. Theon slew Lord Eddard's sons. Give him to Lord Eddard's gods. The old gods of the

north. Give him to the tree."

These were Asha's words.It's really odd how she changes her mindset.

As Ladywhiskers noticed she mentions about Lord Eddard,she even knows how Eddard executed his prisioners,you must admit it sounds really weird,and there is the chill Theon fells.

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But why the tree? How does Asha even know about the tree? And why is her voice "strangely deep?" And how would she have any idea "what Ned Stark would have done?" She never met him. Who would have told her all about Ned Stark? She's Ironborn.

I do think Stannis wrote the letter, though, although I'm not at all sure what his plan could possibly be.

Asha was told about the ways of the north and Eddard Stark by Balon, who was obsessed with getting revenge on him for killing two of his sons and kidnapping the other. That is why he wanted the Ironborn to attack the north rather than having any real tactical plan. It was a mission to destroy everything Ned held dear, which he had been brooding over for years but did nothing about until it was too late.

That's my take on it anyway.

I do agree with the arguement that Ramsey sent the letter, but under false intelligence about the Battle of Ice. Nothing else seems to fit for me.

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I'm gonna list some key lines from the chapter and try my best to explain how they prove Ramsey wrote the letter:

Obviously the implication here is that Maester Tybald has 3 ravens that fly exclusively to Winterfell and has been using them to betray Stannis' location to the Boltons.

Yes, leave the ravens that only fly to Winterfell, as detailed earlier in this exchange. But why?

Also meaning, it may be false. But why would Massey receive false news of Stannis' death? Well:

The Pink Letter claims that Stannis is dead. It also claims there was a 7 day long battle. Odd that GRRM decided to include detailing the length of the battle. Why is it important for the reader to know? Well, after Roose Bolton get's Tybald's last message, he says:

3 days for the Freys/Manderys to arrive at The Gift, 1 day of a farce of a battle (Manderly's drive the Freys into the frozen lake - more on this later) and to plot on how to prevent Ramsey from following into battle and discovering their ploy (see Dreadfort ravens explanation above), and another 3 days for Stannis' host to reach Winterfell. 3 + 3 + 1 =

How do I know the frozen lake will play a part in the doom of the Freys? Well, from Theon we know:

And Roose Bolton orders this:

Then we have this piece of information, when Stannis asks Theon if boys killed Aenys Frey. Theon answers:

What's Stannis smiling about? He's been given an idea, which he begins to explain here:

Then the ravens, who I assume are Bloodraven or Bran, begin to hint at the plan as well:

And where is the tree? Well, later in the chapter, Asha says:

Aaaand the ravens go bananas.

As far as the heads on the Winterfell walls go, seems fishy *wink wink*. Perhaps we now know the significance of why GRRM had the Manderlys mount "Davos" head on their walls. Fake head mounting seems their style, certainly, and that "evidence" would help the Manderlys' story once they returned to Winterfell to deceive the Boltons and spread word that Stannis was just outside the walls (invisible behind the snow).

All these little "truths" sprinkled throughout the Pink Letter are given substantial support from this chapter, and for me solidifies that Ramsay did indeed write the Pink Letter, just under false pretenses,

Also, consider this:

The parchment is a letter from Jon explaining Arnolf's treachery.

Here we see Stannis ordering Justin Massey to drop "Arya" off at Castle Black before heading off to Eastwatch because, as he explains, "A true king pays his debts."

He felt, even if it was to the most minuscule degree, indebted to Jon. What could possibly be the reason for sending "Arya" to Jon at Castle Black, then turning around and sending a raven (which would undoubtedly travel faster than Massey's company) to Castle Black with a deceptive message? If it was to draw Jon out, why send "Arya" to Castle Black in the first place? If Stannis truly believes he's a "true king", why would he pay his debt with deception? It makes no sense.

Thank you for this. It looks like a lot of work and I appreciate it. The point you make about Stannis sending Fake Arya to Jon makes sense, Why do that then send the letter? it doesnt jive. I can not wait to see how this plays out. How does Manderly join Stannis? How do they come together to join forces to attack the Dreadfort? Does Davos show up? with Rickon? How far will the deception go at winterfell? Manderly and his men will have to go back in to winterfell . Right? All that and this is just one story line with a bunch of other cliffhangers i cant wait to find out about. GRRM could say he will have WofW out next week and I would think it was too far away.

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Thank you for this. It looks like a lot of work and I appreciate it. The point you make about Stannis sending Fake Arya to Jon makes sense, Why do that then send the letter? it doesnt jive. I can not wait to see how this plays out. How does Manderly join Stannis? How do they come together to join forces to attack the Dreadfort? Does Davos show up? with Rickon? How far will the deception go at winterfell? Manderly and his men will have to go back in to winterfell . Right? All that and this is just one story line with a bunch of other cliffhangers i cant wait to find out about. GRRM could say he will have WofW out next week and I would think it was too far away.

Manderley already knows what kind of tiger he has by tail in the Boltons courtesy the information that has been related to him by Wex...There is no need to attack Dreadfort even if either Bolton makes it back there...it will be isolated and will be surronded by unhappy Northmen on all sides

Inside Winterfell Lady Dustin and the Ryswells are unreliable Bolton allies at best and Whoresbane Umber is now receiving instruction by drum from Crowsfood at the castle walls

The Freys are about to be swallowed by the lakes and more likely than not will be impersonated on the return to Winterfell by Manderley men...

The Boltons are in dire circumstance...their only saving grace at point is the ability to send ravens to The Twins to execute the hostages and prisioners...I suppose it would be a good time to review the Maesters present at Winterfell and if any of the three would be willing to follow Bolton instruction....

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