The Fresh PtwP

Play-by-play Reread

35 posts in this topic

So after reading a couple of other novels I feel it's time for a reread of ASoIaF. Only this time I'm going to be jotting down ideas and questions as they come up, information I missed, musings or what I see as foreshadowing or why I believe in a certain thing all goes in here and whatever else pops into my head as I read. So without further ado:

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"We have a long ride before us," Gared pointed out. "Eight days, maybe nine. And night is falling."

Ser Waymar Royce glanced at the sky with disinterest. "It does that every day about this time. Are you unmanned by the dark, Gared?"

...

"I've had the cold in me too, lordling." Gared pulled back his hood, giving Ser Waymar a good long look at the stumps where his ears had been. "Two ears, three toes, and the little finger off my left hand. I got off light. We found my brother frozen at his watch, with a smile on his face."

Ser Waymar shrugged. "You ought dress more warmly, Gared." -AGoT, Prologue 

I don't know why but Waymar cracks me up this time around, he isn't supposed to be funny but he beats out Renly and Littlefinger and other characters who are supposed to be witty right here. Maybe he knows Gared mocks him he's, much nicer to Will.

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"Ser Waymar met him bravely. "Dance with me then." He lifted his sword high over his head, defiant. His hands trembled from the weight of it, or perhaps from the cold. Yet in that moment, Will thought, he was a boy no longer, but a man of the Night's Watch.

The Other halted. Will saw its eyes; blue, deeper and bluer than any human eyes, a blue that burned like ice. They fixed on the longsword trembling on high, watched the moonlight running cold along the metal. For a heartbeat he dared to hope." -AGoT, Prologue

Checking for VS? Waiting for reinforcements? *shrugs*. There's that "ice" and "burn" connection Gared just dropped a "Nothing burns like the cold." Gonna watch for that to reappear.

Side note: Waymar gets major kudos for his courage.

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"The Other said something in a language that Will did not know; his voice was like the cracking of ice on a winter lake, and the words were mocking." -AGoT Prologue

Hmmm, some variant of the Old tongue? variant of Old Gods "speech" (i.e rustling of leaves, wind, etc). Really wonder what was said...kinda hope the speaker is Puddles.

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"Robb says the man died bravely, but Jon says he was afraid."

"What do you think?" his father asked.

Bran thought about it. "Can a man still be brave if he's afraid?"

"That is the only time a man can be brave," his father told him. "Do you understand why I did it?" -AGoT Bran I

Both Robb and Jon are half right, but Bran stumbles upon the correct answer, I find this very important. I could be absolutely wrong but I feel Bran could end up being the "main" character more so than Dany or Jon...

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"That was when Jon reappeared on the crest of the hill before them. He waved and shouted down at them. "Father, Bran, come quickly, see what Robb has found!" Then he was gone again." -AGoT Bran I

Ha! Robb won the race.

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"Can't you hear it?"

Bran could hear the wind in the trees, the clatter of their hooves on the ironwood planks, the whimpering of his hungry pup, but Jon was listening to something else.

"There," Jon said. He swung his horse around and galloped back across the bridge. They watched him dismount where the direwolf lay dead in the snow, watched him kneel. A moment later he was riding back to them, smiling." -AGoT Bran I

Bloodraven or Bran? Or the actual Old Gods? Either way very odd. I wonder if we will get an explanation for this?

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The idea that the Other was checking to see if Waymar had Lightbringer has been mentioned as a possibility.

Yes, Waymar definitely rose to the occasion there, and if his sword hadn't shattered it might have been a slightly different story.

I kind of figured that Jon's "hearing" Ghost was part of their mental/spiritual connection, but I don't know.

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2 hours ago, OtherFromAnotherMother said:

Those first two chapters are amazing. 

Have fun with this thread @The Fresh PtwP. I will be following along!

They really are. George's writing really shines, especially the prologue...Will's fear was tangible.

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10 hours ago, The Fresh PtwP said:

Checking for VS? Waiting for reinforcements? *shrugs*.

Most certainly scoping out the blade I believe, checking if the Commander of the Nights watch still carries the blade that killed many of their kind thousands of years before, known to us as "Dragonsteel". See how not long after this, the blade shattering becomes the signal for the back up Others to join in the slaughter laughing while they do so in the knowledge that this was no ferocious Commander wielding a blade such as Dragonsteel, but simply a green boy with fancy clothes wielding regular castle forged steel.

10 hours ago, The Fresh PtwP said:

Bloodraven or Bran? Or the actual Old Gods? Either way very odd. I wonder if we will get an explanation for this?

Note the wind in the trees is mentioned, this may be a clue that Jon is hearing something to do with the wind. Ive even went as far as to speculate that Bran is viewing this event from a point in "the future" and when he sees Jon ride away he cries out in dismay at the thought of him leaving Ghost behind, and this is what causes Jon to turn and notice Ghost. Whats funny here is that Bran was there when it originally happened in "the past" and knows fine well in the back of his mind that Jon returned for Ghost, but his crying out and that cry carrying across over the wind from "the future"(ooh that is a scary word on this forum) was always what made Jon turn and notice Ghost. Of course, this is speculation though.

Whats further, is that because this does not happen in front of a Weirwood tree (that we know of), this will be form a point in time that Bran has progressed to "seeing" things that did not need to have happened in front of a Weirwood with carved eyes. Remember when Bloodraven tells Bran that he will be able to see well beyond the trees.

So Bran has progressed past seeing things only through the eyes of the trees, and is greenseeing events of the past, and happens across the finding of the pups. I think it would be a cool twist if he always was the cause of Jon finding Ghost in this way. Not like he purposely went to that point in time with that intention, but happened across it and cried out, causing it to happen in the first place.

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This brings back the chills of first reading the prologue.  I had no idea who Robert was when Waymar yelled "For Robert!" but man I was hooked.  Definitely looking forward to following along on your play by play and thank you for doing a project like this.

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Posted (edited)

15 hours ago, The Fresh PtwP said:

Bloodraven or Bran? Or the actual Old Gods? Either way very odd. I wonder if we will get an explanation for this?

I think Bloodraven, all the other greenseers, and the old gods are one and the same. 

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"A reader lives a thousand lives before he dies," said Jojen. "The man who never reads lives only one. The singers of the forest had no books. No ink, no parchment, no written language. Instead they had the trees, and the weirwoods above all. When they died, they went into the wood, into leaf and limb and root, and the trees remembered. All their songs and spells, their histories and prayers, everything they knew about this world. Maesters will tell you that the weirwoods are sacred to the old gods. The singers believe they are the old gods. When singers die they become part of that godhood."

Bran III, Dance 34

Edited by Lost Melnibonean

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Taken at face value, "something more" would simply be the sound of the direwolf pups. 

Of course taken at face value is a bad way to read George RR Martin, but we shouldn't necessarily rush to Bloodraven for EVERYTHING either.

Either way, I'm greatly enjoying this!

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17 hours ago, The Fresh PtwP said:

Hmmm, some variant of the Old tongue? variant of Old Gods "speech" (i.e rustling of leaves, wind, etc). Really wonder what was said...kinda hope the speaker is Puddles.

It reminds me of the True Tongue, the language of the COTF:

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Their song and music was said to be as beautiful as they were, but what they sang of is not remembered save in small fragments handed down from ancient days. Maester Childer's Winter's Kings, or the Legends and Lineages of the Starks of Winterfell contains a part of a ballad alleged to tell of the time Brandon the Builder sought the aid of the children while raising the Wall. He was taken to a secret place to meet with them, but could not at first understand their speech, which was described as sounding like the song of stones in a brook, or the wind through leaves, or the rain upon the water. The manner in which Brandon learned to comprehend the speech of the children is a tale in itself, and not worth repeating here. But it seems clear that their speech originated, or drew inspiration from, the sounds they heard every day. (TWOIAF)

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The Other said something in a language that Will did not know; his voice was like the cracking of ice on a winter lake, and the words were mocking. (Prologue, AGOT)

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35 minutes ago, Shmedricko said:

It reminds me of the True Tongue, the language of the COTF:

I like that. 

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10 hours ago, Shmedricko said:

It reminds me of the True Tongue, the language of the COTF:

Ive always thought this. Which I think means the Cotf can, and could, converse with the Others. 

To take it further and merge with what @Lost Melnibonean was talking about above. The Cotf view the Weirwood trees as the actual Old Gods. 

" Instead they had the trees, and the weirwoods above all. When they died, they went into the wood, into leaf and limb and root, and the trees remembered. All their songs and spells, their histories and prayers, everything they knew about this world. Maesters will tell you that the weirwoods are sacred to the old gods. The singers believe they are the old gods. When singers die they become part of that godhood."

As Bran is now "wed to the trees" after eating the paste, and can slip the skin of the trees anytime he pleases, he is now at one with this very Godhood and actually at one with the Old gods. He is effectively, the Old Gods, in a sense. Bran can tap into every single piece of knowledge any Greenseer or Singer ever had, including the True tongue, through the trees.

Could Bran learn to converse with the Others? Assuming the Others language is akin to the true tongue like we think. Would be useful to have a Stark who can negotiate with the Others later in the story  perhaps?.

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5 hours ago, Macgregor of the North said:

Ive always thought this. Which I think means the Cotf can, and could, converse with the Others. 

To take it further and merge with what @Lost Melnibonean was talking about above. The Cotf view the Weirwood trees as the actual Old Gods. 

" Instead they had the trees, and the weirwoods above all. When they died, they went into the wood, into leaf and limb and root, and the trees remembered. All their songs and spells, their histories and prayers, everything they knew about this world. Maesters will tell you that the weirwoods are sacred to the old gods. The singers believe they are the old gods. When singers die they become part of that godhood."

As Bran is now "wed to the trees" after eating the paste, and can slip the skin of the trees anytime he pleases, he is now at one with this very Godhood and actually at one with the Old gods. He is effectively, the Old Gods, in a sense. Bran can tap into every single piece of knowledge any Greenseer or Singer ever had, including the True tongue, through the trees.

Could Bran learn to converse with the Others? Assuming the Others language is akin to the true tongue like we think. Would be useful to have a Stark who can negotiate with the Others later in the story  perhaps?.

Like Neo... "I know kung fu."

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3 hours ago, Lost Melnibonean said:

Like Neo... "I know kung fu."

Show me! 

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Posted (edited)

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"She spread her cloak on the forest floor and sat beside the pool, her back to the weirwood. She could feel the eyes watching her, but she did her best to ignore them."  -AGoT, Catelyn I

Oho! more weirwood trickery

Here's our first description of the WF heart tree itself:

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"The weirwood's bark was white as bone, its leaves dark red, like a thousand bloodstained hands. A face had been carved in the trunk of the great tree, its features long and melancholy, the deep-cut eyes red with dried sap and strangely watchful. They were old, those eyes; older than Winterfell itself." -AGoT, Catelyn I

Other than the description and possible BR/Bran watching not much "out of the norm" for this chapter. Except Nedbert...

 

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Her brother was in a high mood tonight. "The color will bring out the violet in your eyes. And you shall have gold as well, and jewels of all sorts. Illyrio has promised. Tonight you must look like a princess." -AGoT, Daenerys I

 

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"He was a gaunt young man with nervous hands and a feverish look in his pale lilac eyes." -AGoT, Daenerys I

Not super important but I'm making note of all Targaryen eye colors that are mentioned in text and perhaps what they mean.

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"Her brother had a simpler name. "Our land," he called it. The words were like a prayer with him. If he said them enough, the gods were sure to hear. "Ours by blood right, taken from us by treachery, but ours still, ours forever. You do not steal from the dragon, oh, no. The dragon remembers."

"We will have it all back someday, sweet sister," he would promise her. Sometimes his hands shook when he talked about it. "The jewels and the silks, Dragonstone and King's Landing, the Iron Throne and the Seven Kingdoms, all they have taken from us, we will have it back." Viserys lived for that day." -AGoT, Daenerys I

A quick Viserys interlude, just after (re)reading the world book I have even more sympathy for Viserys not an excuse for his behavior but damn he had a miserable existence. His childhood was spent at the height of Aerys paranoia some of which concerned him, he was old enough to feel the impact of the death of his brother, his father, and then his mother and the loss of his home. After Darry dies, he then has to raise a kid on the mean streets of Essos. The fact that Dany didn't starve to death IMO sets Viserys apart from being compared to other petulant antagonists (Joffery, Ramsey) his bark is 100 times worse than his bite.

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"May the Lord of Light shower you with blessings on this most fortunate day, Princess Daenerys," the magister said as he took her hand" -AGoT, Daenerys I

This has always interested me, Illyrio might know about certain prophecies...long story short, I think the lies Dany has to "slay" are all Azor Ahai related.

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 "The Lord of Light would hold our city walls against a million Dothraki, or so the red priests promise … yet why take chances, when their friendship comes so cheap?" -AGoT, Daenerys I

More piety from Illyrio...

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"Yet among them moved bravos and sellswords from Pentos and Myr and Tyrosh, a red priest even fatter than Illyrio, hairy men from the Port of Ibben, and lords from the Summer Isles with skin as black as ebony." -AGoT, Daenerys I

Moqorro??

Edited by The Fresh PtwP
formatting

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13 minutes ago, The Fresh PtwP said:

This has always interested me, Illyrio might know about certain prophecies...long story short, I think the lies Dany has to "slay" are all Azor Ahai related.

More piety from Illyrio...

Moqorro??

If it is Moqorro, what does that tell us? 

As to Illyrio's piety, we hear red priests singing as they light their night fires, and we hear Illyrio pay homage to the Lord of Light, but the homage rings false when he questions the belief the red priests have in the power of their god. I think it's more likely that the author is introducing what we will learn more about later, as he does with the eunuchs and their spiked helmets. 

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"Likely they were too shy to come out," Ned jested. He could feel the chill coming up the stairs, a cold breath from deep within the earth. "Kings are a rare sight in the north."

Robert snorted. "More likely they were hiding under the snow. Snow, Ned!" The king put one hand on the wall to steady himself as they descended.

1.) "a cold breath from the deep within the earth" dragon hyyyyyyype!

2.) KiTN Jon Snow?

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"I have more concern for my nephew's welfare than I do for Lannister pride," Ned declared.

"That is because you do not sleep with a Lannister." Robert laughed, the sound rattling among the tombs and bouncing from the vaulted ceiling." -AGoT, Eddard I

This is the first case of Ned needing to not be a pushover. Also wtf is Cersei or Tywin gonna do about it? Nobody cares about Sweetrobin enough to fight over. Ned should've put his foot down.

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"His lord father had come first, escorting the queen. She was as beautiful as men said. A jeweled tiara gleamed amidst her long golden hair, its emeralds a perfect match for the green of her eyes. His father helped her up the steps to the dais and led her to her seat, but the queen never so much as looked at him. Even at fourteen, Jon could see through her smile.

Next had come King Robert himself, with Lady Stark on his arm. The king was a great disappointment to Jon. His father had talked of him often: the peerless Robert Baratheon, demon of the Trident, the fiercest warrior of the realm, a giant among princes. Jon saw only a fat man, red-faced under his beard, sweating through his silks. He walked like a man half in his cups.

After them came the children. Little Rickon first, managing the long walk with all the dignity a three-year-old could muster. Jon had to urge him on when he stopped to visit. Close behind came Robb, in grey wool trimmed with white, the Stark colors. He had the Princess Myrcella on his arm. She was a wisp of a girl, not quite eight, her hair a cascade of golden curls under a jeweled net. Jon noticed the shy looks she gave Robb as they passed between the tables and the timid way she smiled at him. He decided she was insipid. Robb didn't even have the sense to realize how stupid she was; he was grinning like a fool.

His half sisters escorted the royal princes. Arya was paired with plump young Tommen, whose white-blond hair was longer than hers. Sansa, two years older, drew the crown prince, Joffrey Baratheon. He was twelve, younger than Jon or Robb, but taller than either, to Jon's vast dismay. Prince Joffrey had his sister's hair and his mother's deep green eyes. A thick tangle of blond curls dripped down past his golden choker and high velvet collar. Sansa looked radiant as she walked beside him, but Jon did not like Joffrey's pouty lips or the bored, disdainful way he looked at Winterfell's Great Hall.

He was more interested in the pair that came behind him: the queen's brothers, the Lannisters of Casterly Rock. The Lion and the Imp; there was no mistaking which was which. Ser Jaime Lannister was twin to Queen Cersei; tall and golden, with flashing green eyes and a smile that cut like a knife. He wore crimson silk, high black boots, a black satin cloak. On the breast of his tunic, the lion of his House was embroidered in gold thread, roaring its defiance. They called him the Lion of Lannister to his face and whispered "Kingslayer" behind his back.

Jon found it hard to look away from him. This is what a king should look like, he thought to himself as the man passed.

Then he saw the other one, waddling along half-hidden by his brother's side. Tyrion Lannister, the youngest of Lord Tywin's brood and by far the ugliest. All that the gods had given to Cersei and Jaime, they had denied Tyrion. He was a dwarf, half his brother's height, struggling to keep pace on stunted legs. His head was too large for his body, with a brute's squashed-in face beneath a swollen shelf of brow. One green eye and one black one peered out from under a lank fall of hair so blond it seemed white. Jon watched him with fascination.

The last of the high lords to enter were his uncle, Benjen Stark of the Night's Watch, and his father's ward, young Theon Greyjoy. Benjen gave Jon a warm smile as he went by. Theon ignored him utterly, but there was nothing new in that. After all had been seated, toasts were made, thanks were given and returned, and then the feasting began." -AGoT, Jon I

A lot of kings in this chapter, first off Robert being a disappointment. Notice the color scheme Jaime is wearing and Jon saying that's how a king should look. Red and black, king colors.

Joffery is taller than Robb and Jon...I really wonder about that duel...

Nice family moment with Rickon and Jon. 

Also, where is Bran???

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"Jon swelled with pride. "Robb is a stronger lance than I am, but I'm the better sword, and Hullen says I sit a horse as well as anyone in the castle." -AGoT, Jon I

That seems a little contradictory, being the stronger lance implies being the better horseman, also Robb one the bridge race in the first chapter despite Jon's head start. Either way I personally think there is a negligible difference in skill between them.

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"Remember this, boy. All dwarfs may be bastards, yet not all bastards need be dwarfs." And with that he turned and sauntered back into the feast, whistling a tune. When he opened the door, the light from within threw his shadow clear across the yard, and for just a moment Tyrion Lannister stood tall as a king." -AGoT, Jon I

Another king refrence, so that's Robert, Jaime in red and black, and Tyrion's shadow.

I wonder what tune he was whistling?

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2 hours ago, The Fresh PtwP said:

<snip

Not super important but I'm making note of all Targaryen eye colors that are mentioned in text and perhaps what they mean.

<snip

I've got a list of all known Targ eye colors and who they belong to, culled from the wiki (only the ones with sources). It would be interesting to compare the two and see which ones are specifically mentioned in the text of the series.

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2 hours ago, The Fresh PtwP said:

A lot of kings in this chapter, first off Robert being a disappointment. Notice the color scheme Jaime is wearing and Jon saying that's how a king should look. Red and black, king colors.

More specifically, Jaime's colors are black on red, as they are again here...

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When he descended for the feast that night, Jaime Lannister wore a doublet of red velvet slashed with cloth-of-gold, and a golden chain studded with black diamonds. He had strapped on his golden hand as well, polished to a fine bright sheen. This was no fit place to wear his whites. His duty awaited him at Riverrun; a darker need had brought him here.

Jaime IV, Feast 30

And like the colors of House Cole...

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"A lot of brave men have worn the white cloak."

...

"The best and the worst." ... "And a few who were a bit of both. Like him." He tapped the page he had been reading.

"Who?" Ser Loras craned his head around to see. "Ten black pellets on a scarlet field. I do not know those arms."

"They belonged to Criston Cole, who served the first Viserys and the second Aegon." Jaime closed the White Book. "They called him Kingmaker."

Jaime II, Feast 16

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