Agent 326

How did Ethan Glover not get executed by the Mad King?

31 posts in this topic

My best guess for an in world explanation is that Deepwood Motte is a very long way from King's Landing. Aerys ordered the fathers of each of Brandon's party to come to King's Landing and answer for their sons. Ethan's father, if he was still alive, would have a long way to travel to answer Aerys's summons. By the time he got near King's Landing it may well have been after Brandon's and Rickard's execution. At which point the elder Glover would probably join the rebellion.

The meta reason, seems more likely the cause of Ethan's survival. He is needed to be the source of some information to be given to the reader. Ethan was the only surviving member of Brandon's party, so if we are to learn what were the reasons they did what they did, then he is the source for that story. The fact he travels to the Tower of Joy with Ned and Howland gives us reason to think both of them know his tale. Perhaps it is important for Ned to have known and we will find out later, or more likely when Howland appears this will be part of the tale we learn from him.

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1 hour ago, Widowmaker 811 said:

True.  We must also remember that Aerys had advisers like Varys around him.  Varys could have asked the king to spare the boy because of his youth.  He was only a squire and most likely did not shout, "Rhaegar, come out and die!" like the other deserving fools did. 

We only know that Brandon did that, not the others. It's pretty unlikely they all shouted, considering it was Brandon's sister who was missing and Brandon was the hotheaded one.

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1 hour ago, Widowmaker 811 said:

True.  We must also remember that Aerys had advisers like Varys around him.  Varys could have asked the king to spare the boy because of his youth.  He was only a squire and most likely did not shout, "Rhaegar, come out and die!" like the other deserving fools did. 

That right there is extremely plausible, it would be an inverse to Robb hanging the lookout from Lord Rikard Karstark killed the Lannister/Frey boys.

9 hours ago, Lame Lothar Frey said:

Because he's a young squire and therefore not really responsible for the terrorists behavior of Brandon and his attack party. 

Because maybe, just maybe, the Mad King was not as mad as some credit him for.  And sure, Ethan could have confessed all he knew about Brandon's intent to kill the prince. 

 And that would fit with Arianne's theme of 'there is always someone that tells'. 

 

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4 hours ago, Daemon The Black Dragon said:

Or the fact that Aerys killed Elbert Arryn too. Could just show how mad/crazy Aerys had gotten. For all we know Aerys didn't think of Ethan Glover as a threat to him. Trying to figure out the reason why a mad man does one thing but not another, is a question we'll never truly  know.  

That is a possible scenario. But keep in mind that we still don't really know yet what happened at KL after Aerys II arrested Brandon and his companions. We assume they were accused of threatening Rhaegar but their fathers had nothing to do with that. Aerys II could have burned them all, then and there, considering that he himself, some Kingsguard, and other witnesses might have actually heard Brandon's threats.

What were his issues with the fathers of these people? What exactly was Lord Rickard accused of? Remember, he is the one who demanded a trial-by-combat, not Brandon. There are a lot of unknowns here. It is both odd and very telling that we have a lot of information on the prelude to Robert's Rebellion but no detailed information yet on the abduction and its immediate aftermath in KL and elsewhere. And there might be more than one or two twists hidden in the information about those events that we are going to get later on.

And keep in mind that while Aerys II was mad he was not exactly known to actually target members of the great houses. He allowed Tywin to resign, he did not burn him. But aside from Brandon and Rickard Stark he also burned Elbert Arryn, Jeffory Mallister and Kyle Royce. Those were all rather prominent men. It is unlikely that Aerys II - who was seeing conspiracies everywhere - would not have understood that killing those men might actually cause a rebellion. But if he believed they were all part of a rebellion that was going already killing them was the only way to stop it.

That could also explain why he commanded the execution of Robert and Ned.

4 hours ago, Kenton Stark said:

Ok. That is a very reasonable explanation for something that had bugged me for a long time. Well done. I still think it may just be a hole in GRRM's writing in GOT, but really like the way you have thought this out..

Thank you. This is most likely not a plot hole. George has drawn up the stuff around the tower of joy and the crucial events during the Rebellion a very long time ago. What might be a plot hole is the claim that the fathers of Brandon's companions all died with them. That's not true for Elbert Arryn, and perhaps also not for Kyle Royce or Jeffory Mallister. We don't know how they figure into the houses.

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2 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

That is a possible scenario. But keep in mind that we still don't really know yet what happened at KL after Aerys II arrested Brandon and his companions. We assume they were accused of threatening Rhaegar but their fathers had nothing to do with that. Aerys II could have burned them all, then and there, considering that he himself, some Kingsguard, and other witnesses might have actually heard Brandon's threats.

What were his issues with the fathers of these people? What exactly was Lord Rickard accused of? Remember, he is the one who demanded a trial-by-combat, not Brandon. There are a lot of unknowns here. It is both odd and very telling that we have a lot of information on the prelude to Robert's Rebellion but no detailed information yet on the abduction and its immediate aftermath in KL and elsewhere. And there might be more than one or two twists hidden in the information about those events that we are going to get later on.

And keep in mind that while Aerys II was mad he was not exactly known to actually target members of the great houses. He allowed Tywin to resign, he did not burn him. But aside from Brandon and Rickard Stark he also burned Elbert Arryn, Jeffory Mallister and Kyle Royce. Those were all rather prominent men. It is unlikely that Aerys II - who was seeing conspiracies everywhere - would not have understood that killing those men might actually cause a rebellion. But if he believed they were all part of a rebellion that was going already killing them was the only way to stop it.

That could also explain why he commanded the execution of Robert and Ned.

Thank you. This is most likely not a plot hole. George has drawn up the stuff around the tower of joy and the crucial events during the Rebellion a very long time ago. What might be a plot hole is the claim that the fathers of Brandon's companions all died with them. That's not true for Elbert Arryn, and perhaps also not for Kyle Royce or Jeffory Mallister. We don't know how they figure into the houses.

Well we know why Aerys arrested Brandon and he's companions. For conspiring to kill the crown prince. Then he summoned their Fathers to answer for the crimes of their sons. My guess is instead of having his son go through a pretend trial, Rickard choice was to go with a trial by combat. If Aerys accused then killed all of these people of being in a rebellion against the throne, it would've been huge news and widely known. 

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13 minutes ago, Daemon The Black Dragon said:

Well we know why Aerys arrested Brandon and he's companions. For conspiring to kill the crown prince. Then he summoned their Fathers to answer for the crimes of their sons. My guess is instead of having his son go through a pretend trial, Rickard choice was to go with a trial by combat. If Aerys accused then killed all of these people of being in a rebellion against the throne, it would've been huge news and widely known. 

No, we don't know that. What we know is that Brandon Stark summoned Rhaegar to come out and die. That sounds as if Brandon was challenging Rhaegar to single combat, something he would have been entitled to do. The Prince of Dragonstone isn't the king, he is not above the law. If he has abducted Lyanna Stark it is the right of her father and brother to demand recompense for that.

We also know that Brandon and his companions were arrested after that but we don't know that this was because Brandon has threatened Rhaegar. That's an inference we make, on the basis of Jaime's brief summary of the events, but we don't know whether this is true or not. It was a good inference prior to the publication of TWoIaF but it is no longer. Now we know that Aerys II feared his eldest son and heir was conspiring against him with the Starks, intending to topple him. That indicates that Aerys II would have welcomed and supported any threat a nobleman of the Realm uttered against Rhaegar. He would have seen this as testimony that this man was on his side, not that he was against him, too.

We know that Aerys II's own cronies in the Small Council where actually pushing the king to disinherit his eldest son in favor of young Viserys. Those men weren't accused of treason either, nor were they or their fathers burned alive. Why is that if a threat Brandon made against Rhaegar was dealt with so harshly?

It just doesn't make a lot of sense.

And, no, things that are widely known in Westeros doesn't have to be known to us. That is part of George's narrative style. A lot of POVs know a lot of stuff they never mention or think about despite the fact that those are widely known and interesting facts for us. Take Cersei dancing around Maggy's prophecy as long as she does in AFfC as an example, or Jon Connington never thinking about Lyanna in ADwD.

A lot of things about the Rebellion are still unknown to us that might be well known to the people in the series. And the beginning of the war and the aftermath of the abduction is such a thing.

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I have a simple explanation.  EG stayed outside and tended the horses while Brandon and his rabid thugs barged into the throne room making threats.  EG didn't commit any crimes against the royals and there was no reason to execute him.  Otoh, Brandon and his armed men obviously committed a crime against the royal family when they threatened the Targaryens.  Brandon must have also disrespected Aerys and that meant he deserved to get executed for disrespecting the king.  I can see the king telling Brandon to get the hell out of the throne room and Brandon being insolent, refusing to obey and giving the king an attitude. 

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On Reddit a couple a months ago a theory known as the Harrenhal Conspiracy answered this question quite well IMO. Its an expansion on the "Southron Ambitions" theory and basically fingers Ethan Glover as the rat who told the Mad King about the Lords plans to overthrow him. It explains a lot of other things quite well.

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2 hours ago, Allardyce said:

I have a simple explanation.  EG stayed outside and tended the horses while Brandon and his rabid thugs barged into the throne room making threats.  EG didn't commit any crimes against the royals and there was no reason to execute him.  Otoh, Brandon and his armed men obviously committed a crime against the royal family when they threatened the Targaryens.  Brandon must have also disrespected Aerys and that meant he deserved to get executed for disrespecting the king.  I can see the king telling Brandon to get the hell out of the throne room and Brandon being insolent, refusing to obey and giving the king an attitude. 

That goes pretty against everything we know about what happened including a POv of someone who was there at the time

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2 hours ago, Allardyce said:

I have a simple explanation.  EG stayed outside and tended the horses while Brandon and his rabid thugs barged into the throne room making threats.  EG didn't commit any crimes against the royals and there was no reason to execute him.  Otoh, Brandon and his armed men obviously committed a crime against the royal family when they threatened the Targaryens.  Brandon must have also disrespected Aerys and that meant he deserved to get executed for disrespecting the king.  I can see the king telling Brandon to get the hell out of the throne room and Brandon being insolent, refusing to obey and giving the king an attitude. 

The conversation between Jaime and Catelyn seems to at least imply he did go in.

Jaime poured the last half cup of wine. "He rode into the Red Keep with a few companions, shouting for Prince Rhaegar to come out and die. But Rhaegar wasn't there. Aerys sent his guards to arrest them all for plotting his son's murder. The others were lords' sons too, it seems to me."

"Ethan Glover was Brandon's squire," Catelyn said. "He was the only one to survive. The others were Jeffory Mallister, Kyle Royce, and Elbert Arryn, Jon Arryn's nephew and heir." It was queer how she still remembered the names, after so many years. "Aerys accused them of treason and summoned their fathers to court to answer the charge, with the sons as hostages. When they came, he had them murdered without trial. Fathers and sons both."

It's entirely possible Aerys didn't consider a squire important, maybe Ethan didn't tell him he was from a noble house. There could be something important to this but I doubt we would ever find out.

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12 hours ago, Makk said:

The conversation between Jaime and Catelyn seems to at least imply he did go in.

Jaime poured the last half cup of wine. "He rode into the Red Keep with a few companions, shouting for Prince Rhaegar to come out and die. But Rhaegar wasn't there. Aerys sent his guards to arrest them all for plotting his son's murder. The others were lords' sons too, it seems to me."

"Ethan Glover was Brandon's squire," Catelyn said. "He was the only one to survive. The others were Jeffory Mallister, Kyle Royce, and Elbert Arryn, Jon Arryn's nephew and heir." It was queer how she still remembered the names, after so many years. "Aerys accused them of treason and summoned their fathers to court to answer the charge, with the sons as hostages. When they came, he had them murdered without trial. Fathers and sons both."

It's entirely possible Aerys didn't consider a squire important, maybe Ethan didn't tell him he was from a noble house. There could be something important to this but I doubt we would ever find out.

Riding into the Red Keep is entirely different than riding into Maegor's holdfast or the Great Hall. The IT is in the Great Hall. The royal apartments are in Maegor's holdfast. No one is riding a horse into either (unless you're Tywin) and subsequently yelling for the crown prince to die. 

They likely rode in past the curtain walls and went to the stables. Jaime would have noted their location if they were actually in a place to *harm* anyone in the royal family, especially Rhaegar.

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