Black Crow

Heresy 205 bats and little green men

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Bran Vras has an interesting read on the black bat, Harrenhall and maternal lines.  All of Catelyn's kids have the black line as part of their heritage through Minisa Whent.  The winged wolves including Sansa and Bran have leathery wings.

http://branvras.free.fr/HuisClos/Bat.html

I especially like the connection between the nine bats of House Whent and the nine iron swords of the Stark kings. 

Also, this quote about demon wolves sent to chastise sinners reminds me of the KotLT doing the same and the blue-eyed lot:
 

Quote

 

A Feast for Crows - Jaime III

Soon the signs of war could be seen on every hand. Weeds and thorns and brushy trees grew high as a horse's head in fields where autumn wheat should be ripening, the kingsroad was bereft of travelers, and wolves ruled the weary world from dusk till dawn. Most of the animals were wary enough to keep their distance, but one of Marbrand's outriders had his horse run off and killed when he dismounted for a piss. "No beast would be so bold," declared Ser Bonifer the Good, of the stern sad face. "These are demons in the skins of wolves, sent to chastise us for our sins."

 

Perhaps there is some connection here with the 'wargs' who can skinchange the dead?  

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1 hour ago, LynnS said:

 

Also, this quote about demon wolves sent to chastise sinners reminds me of the KotLT doing the same and the blue-eyed lot:
 

Perhaps there is some connection here with the 'wargs' who can skinchange the dead?  

Not necessarily directly, but it certainly suggests a tradition that skin-changing was once far more common

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1 hour ago, LynnS said:

Bran Vras has an interesting read on the black bat, Harrenhall and maternal lines.  All of Catelyn's kids have the black line as part of their heritage through Minisa Whent.  The winged wolves including Sansa and Bran have leathery wings.

http://branvras.free.fr/HuisClos/Bat.html

I especially like the connection between the nine bats of House Whent and the nine iron swords of the Stark kings. 

 

Yes, very interesting and I'd forgotten the dead bats Bran finds in the cave, suggesting a possible connection between between the Lothstons/Whents and the green men - which brings us back again to the possible identification of Ser Shadrich as the Knight of the Laughing tree.

I also found the comparisons between Harrenhal and the Night Fort interesting. How much of the place predates Harren the Black's work? The domed kitchen is intriguing, and is the bear-pit just a bear pit or is it a capped off shaft/well, another stairway to Hell like the one in the Nightfort?

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Within days of his coronation, Aegon’s armies were on the march again. The greater part of his host crossed the Blackwater Rush, making south for Storm’s End under the command of Orys Baratheon. Queen Rhaenys accompanied him, astride Meraxes of the golden eyes and silver scales. The Targaryen fleet, under Daemon Velaryon, left Blackwater Bay and turned north, for Gulltown and the Vale. With them went Queen Visenya and Vhagar. The king himself marched northeast, to the Gods Eye and Harrenhal, the gargantuan fortress that was the pride and obsession of King Harren the Black and which he had completed and occupied on the very day Aegon landed in what would one day become King’s Landing. 

-The world of Ice and Fire

So unlike the Nightfort, Harrenhal is only a few hundred years old.  We do have an interesting parallel in that Harren built one and his brother ruled the other.

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Could Ben Blackthumb be a character worth digging into?  He claims to have served the last Lord Lothston, which doesn't seem possible.  Mad Danelle ruled in 211AC years when she aided e Daemon II Blackfyre , and properly would be a Lady and not a Lord.  So the last Lord Lothston would be before that.  And Ben doesn't just claim to have been born during the time of the last Lord Lothston, but to have actually served, which means he'd be at least a teenager or close.  Old Ben claims to have lived a very long time, especially for a place where no one else seems to live very long at all.

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48 minutes ago, Brad Stark said:

So unlike the Nightfort, Harrenhal is only a few hundred years old.

Yes, this is actually in the canon too:

Quote

 

And when at last Harrenhal stood complete, on the very day King Harren took up residence, Aegon the Conqueror had come ashore at King's Landing.

Catelyn could remember hearing Old Nan tell the story to her own children, back at Winterfell. "And King Harren learned that thick walls and high towers are small use against dragons," the tale always ended. "For dragons fly." Harren and all his line had perished in the fires that engulfed his monstrous fortress, and every house that held Harrenhal since had come to misfortune. Strong it might be, but it was a dark place, and cursed.

 

So the curse, if there is a curse, is also only three hundred years old.

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House Hoare did also "come to misfortune." Sadly we do not know who ruled the land before them when the Storm Kings ruled the Riverlands. 

From a logical point of view the curse can predate the castle. From a story telling perspecive it will most likely not. 

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10 hours ago, Brad Stark said:

So unlike the Nightfort, Harrenhal is only a few hundred years old.  We do have an interesting parallel in that Harren built one and his brother ruled the other.

Not necessarily. There's absolutely no reason to doubt that the castle as we see it today was indeed built by Harren the Black no more than 300 years ago, but whether he built it on a green field site is a different matter entirely. Castles are built where they are for a reason and that reason will have existed long before Harren was born. The weirwood tree certainly predates the building of Harren's castle and the only reason not to have turned that particular one into floorboards is that it was already the heart tree of an existing structure. The domed kitchen sounds far too like the one in the Nightfort, and the bear pit is odd. Something stood there before Harren tooled up and flattened it to make his own bijou residence

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On ‎2‎/‎15‎/‎2018 at 4:45 AM, Feather Crystal said:

Think about what bats can do. They navigate in the dark even though their eyesight is poor. This "seeing" in the dark seems like a connection to greenseers. 

In what will be a surprise to no one, I have a theory in the works on this.   lol     The gist is that long long ago on a continent far far away, there existed a society of old that was either mostly nocturnal, or resided mostly underground.   Yes, I realize that sounds insane.   However, there is a major theme of 'darkness'/'night' running through this series in both characters and places - bats are an element, as are the tall pale people of Qarth, names like "Mole's Town", etc.   

ANd of course, I am now out of time to finish this thought.  :(

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17 minutes ago, PrettyPig said:

In what will be a surprise to no one, I have a theory in the works on this.   lol     The gist is that long long ago on a continent far far away, there existed a society of old that was either mostly nocturnal, or resided mostly underground.   Yes, I realize that sounds insane.   However, there is a major theme of 'darkness'/'night' running through this series in both characters and places - bats are an element, as are the tall pale people of Qarth, names like "Mole's Town", etc.   

ANd of course, I am now out of time to finish this thought.  :(

And I am excited now to read this! I'm sure there will be some Marvel flavor in there too...all for the better! And I don't think I've read any essays on Mole's Town or men underground. That sounds really interesting!

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1 hour ago, PrettyPig said:

In what will be a surprise to no one, I have a theory in the works on this.   lol     The gist is that long long ago on a continent far far away, there existed a society of old that was either mostly nocturnal, or resided mostly underground.   Yes, I realize that sounds insane.   However, there is a major theme of 'darkness'/'night' running through this series in both characters and places - bats are an element, as are the tall pale people of Qarth, names like "Mole's Town", etc.   

ANd of course, I am now out of time to finish this thought.  :(

I'll be interested to see where this takes you but of course the natural response, discussed in text, to the heavy snow falls associated with long winters is to go underground. Sidhe hills, tunnels - and crypts - are not necessarily residences of choice but rather a necessity while everybody waits for the spring.

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52 minutes ago, Black Crow said:

I'll be interested to see where this takes you but of course the natural response, discussed in text, to the heavy snow falls associated with long winters is to go underground. Sidhe hills, tunnels - and crypts - are not necessarily residences of choice but rather a necessity while everybody waits for the spring.

I suspect that the long night has less to do with lack of daylight but more with living underground in the dark.

Edited by LynnS

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7 hours ago, SirArthur said:

House Hoare did also "come to misfortune." Sadly we do not know who ruled the land before them when the Storm Kings ruled the Riverlands. 

From a logical point of view the curse can predate the castle.

In theory, but awful things have always happened all over Westeros.  Is all of Westeros cursed?  

Also, if we're going to imagine prior castles on the site, how do we define the boundaries of their associated land?  Where does the curse start and stop? 

For instance, should we include the Gods Eye?  The Isle of Faces? Are the green men cursed too?  Have they always been?  If they're cursed, how is it that in many thousands of years, they have somehow never been overcome by invading forces such as the Andals?  Doesn't it seem like they're blessed, and hence the name of the lake?

My guess is that the Harrenhal curse, such as it is, applies for the same reason we might say the Iron Throne is cursed: people in this world constantly spill blood over power and status.  The most remarkable thing about Harrenhal's curse, to me, is the coincidence of Harren moving in and Aegon landing in Westeros.

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I think that a more reasonable interpretation of the curse is that it applies quite narrowly to Harren's castle; to his building it exactly where he did and to the cutting down of the weirwoods, and to the blood that went into it.

Once again to quote Jennet Clouston:

Blood built it, blood stopped the building of it, and blood will bring it down. Black will be its fall.

I've quoted it in the past as applying to the Wall, but the same curse might also fit Harrenhal

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58 minutes ago, JNR said:

Also, if we're going to imagine prior castles on the site, how do we define the boundaries of their associated land?  Where does the curse start and stop? 

A curse is, in a broader term, magic. What are the allowed ranges and distances for magic ? For Others ? Certainly the wall is a boundary. But that is hardly the case here.

From a more earthly perspective, it is entirely possible to explain a "curse" with radioactivity. And radioactivity has rules when it comes to range, strength and so on. At least the fertility problems around Harrenhal can be explained this way.

Let's call it "radical fantasy atoms" that are assembled under Harrenhal and the Night's Fort is a larger number. Just as a thought experiment. Maybe they are even there as a natural occurence. That would imply Harrenhal as well as the Night's Fort are so important, because magic is more potent there. 

 

Edited by SirArthur

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1 hour ago, LynnS said:

I suspect that the long night has less to do with lack of daylight but more with living underground in the dark.

:agree:

Agreed, and I had theorized before that Old Nan's story about the Long Night is actually about the Children of the Forest...the parts about whole generations living and dying in darkness.

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1 hour ago, JNR said:

In theory, but awful things have always happened all over Westeros.  Is all of Westeros cursed?  

Also, if we're going to imagine prior castles on the site, how do we define the boundaries of their associated land?  Where does the curse start and stop? 

For instance, should we include the Gods Eye?  The Isle of Faces? Are the green men cursed too?  Have they always been?  If they're cursed, how is it that in many thousands of years, they have somehow never been overcome by invading forces such as the Andals?  Doesn't it seem like they're blessed, and hence the name of the lake?

I agree with the broader point, but I think your own example raises a means by which we might more narrowly define "cursed" or blessed locations: sites where the Pact has been violated or honored, respectively.

Did Harren clear out a section of Godswood to establish his building site? Did prior occupants, if he built his castle atop an older structure? Was there, once upon a time, a "stairway to hell" at the site (as BC questions), occupied tunnels that were purged by the FM or the Andals in some bygone era?

Edit: Of course, even then, we don't know much more than if we were just saying that every site where something bad happened is cursed, but we might at least look for telltale signs of places that would have once been sacred to the CotF.

Edit 2: As a sideways take on that concept, though the characters in-world designate these sites as 'cursed,' this might be a superstitious reaction to a real phenomena: that the various sites which have been designated as haunted/roamed by unquiet spirits - Harrenhal, the Night Fort, High Heart, the Winterfell crypts, etc. - are sites where one might more profoundly experience the dreams and whispers of the wood.

For the CotF (and post-Pact, pre-Andal FM), sites being 'haunted' by ancestral spirits is not a bug, it's a feature.

Edited by Matthew.

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On the surface it almost appears as if Aegon the Conqueror was summoned to deal with Harren Hoare. If it took forty years to build his monstrous castle, and forests of weirwoods to help build it, plus the bloodshed of thousands of captive slaves - maybe it also caused the deaths of many Children of the Forest? Maybe the Long Night wasn't that long ago? Sometimes "thousands of years" just means "a long time ago"?

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46 minutes ago, Feather Crystal said:

On the surface it almost appears as if Aegon the Conqueror was summoned to deal with Harren Hoare. If it took forty years to build his monstrous castle, and forests of weirwoods to help build it, plus the bloodshed of thousands of captive slaves - maybe it also caused the deaths of many Children of the Forest? Maybe the Long Night wasn't that long ago? Sometimes "thousands of years" just means "a long time ago"?

On second thought - maybe we are looking at this wrong? If you are a believer in the parallel mirrored inversion theory, Aegon the Conqueror is the mirrored inversion to when the white walkers invaded Westeros. Dragons are fire made flesh and the mirrored inversion to a different sort of life made of ice. This time instead of hiding from ice and white walkers - people had to hide from fire and dragons? It fits with the two sides of one coin motif. I'm thinking Harren the Hoare's story is a second long night - only by fire.

Edited by Feather Crystal

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Perhaps back in the day the bats, not the ravens/crows were the messengers, although on balance I still favour the idea that the latter are players in their own right rather than mere postmen

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