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maidenandwarrior

Howland Reed + Ashara Dayne = Meera & Jojen?

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You'd said that the passage describing Ashara is really just informing the audience and not really saying something about Howland's feelings toward her. I think the fact that Barriston describes the same pair of eyes as 'haunting' rather refutes that. Both have a purpose and meaning, and are very different descriptions of Ashara's eyes.

Hmmm don't know about refutes. It means they both think of Ashara differently. If Meera does just know Ashara as a character in her story she was told by her father (not saying that definitely is the case) then obviously she is going to characterise her as happy/beautiful, saying she had haunting eyes probably wouldn't fit the tone of the story. Also I'm not saying the whole passage is GRRM spouting info for readers about the Tourney, I'm just saying not every single observation made by Howland (being proxied by Meera) needs to be explainable in terms of the interests or desires of that character.

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I'm seldom on the forums anymore so I count myself lucky to have crossed paths with your post. IMHO, the effort you have put into your analysis harkens back to some of the best theories to be proffered on Westeros. Although, I might be biased by the fact that your therory involves some of my favorite characters and passages from ASOIAF. All and all - nicely done.

Thank you so much! It is such an odd theory, much like R=L=J must have been in the beginning, that I would have felt silly presenting it without textual evidence. The Reeds are some of my favorite characters too, as are the Daynes and Starks. Anything that makes them more awesome and ties them together makes me happy.

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@OP also can I just say I do not disagree with your theory I just think your reasoning is a bit skewed in places. There are going to be hundreds of members of this forum with egg on their face when the next two books are released and it is revealed that Asha is in fact a man, Hodor is a Targaryen, Ned is alive and warged into Illyn Payne etc etc and I do not plan on being one of them. Therefore I do not utterly refute any theory, certainly not one that has actually been fleshed out with like, textual evidence and everything.

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The Ashara theory is quite possible, but the Arthur's is far-fetched/but still possible. But I just want to beleive it 'cause I want him to be the HoodedMan :P just some crazy little boy fantasy i know.

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I can see you've put a lot of hard work and thought into this theory maidenandwarrior, but it's a crackpot theory. It's a good crackpot theory but it seems highly unlikely that all these things happened.

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This is one of those theories that you know probably isn't true, but you wish it was anyway! I have to say, I'm impressed!

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Oh Goodie Gumdrops! An Ashara Dayne + Someone = Someone else theory! How unique!

Seriously though, sorry OP, you put a lot of work in this, but I just dont see it. Hope you come up with something better next time :)

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The Ashara theory is quite possible, but the Arthur's is far-fetched/but still possible. But I just want to beleive it 'cause I want him to be the HoodedMan :P just some crazy little boy fantasy i know.

Don't worry, I have it too! I think, more than anything, I want Jaime to have to confront this spectre of his past. He admires Dayne so much, I think that would be an amazing scene.

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I really, really, really like this. It makes a weird sort of sense, explains some stuff about the Harrenhal tourney story and it also includes the sort of literary symbolism (like frogs and mud) that I really like and that I usually think means something.

My biggest hash is that I really do think Arthur is dead. I think he can be dead without derailing the theory, or making Ned and Howland adversaries to the Daynes. If he was wounded badly or decided he really wanted to go down with the Targaryen ship, that could explain it. I've always assumed the "they" were Howland and probably Wylla or another servant, a wet nurse, midwife, etc. It never occurred to me that it was Arthur, given that Ned explicitly built cairns for the dead. I also don't think that Ned would allow people to think he killed Arthur (something that bolsters his reputation) if he hadn't, even to protect Arthur's secret if he were alive.

But overall, I really do like it. If nothing else, it's original and something I haven't seen on here before.

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I really, really, really like this. It makes a weird sort of sense, explains some stuff about the Harrenhal tourney story and it also includes the sort of literary symbolism (like frogs and mud) that I really like and that I usually think means something.

My biggest hash is that I really do think Arthur is dead. I think he can be dead without derailing the theory, or making Ned and Howland adversaries to the Daynes. If he was wounded badly or decided he really wanted to go down with the Targaryen ship, that could explain it. I've always assumed the "they" were Howland and probably Wylla or another servant, a wet nurse, midwife, etc. It never occurred to me that it was Arthur, given that Ned explicitly built cairns for the dead. I also don't think that Ned would allow people to think he killed Arthur (something that bolsters his reputation) if he hadn't, even to protect Arthur's secret if he were alive.

But overall, I really do like it. If nothing else, it's original and something I haven't seen on here before.

Thank you so much!

I do, definitely agree that Arthur being alive is the weakest link, but I am strangely attached to it for some reason. Although, can you imagine how devastating that must have been if Arthur really did die at the TOJ through the lens of this theory? Howland was fighting his own brother, who was defending Ned's sister...oh, it gets all so complicated. That too would have been a very hard thing to explain to Ashara when they got to Starfall. I think it would have been a wound in their relationship for a long time.

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I really like this theory. I hope you're right!

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Why couldn’t Howland Reed also have a great backstory as well, one that also took place off screen?

And why couldn’t Ashara Dayne not be the victim of Ned or Brandon that everyone seems to think she was, and instead be the master of her own destiny?

Great stuff, and it should make my re-reading exercise a lot more intriguing, although I feel like diving into the books to look for more clues right now. Congrats :)

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Hmmm don't know about refutes. It means they both think of Ashara differently. If Meera does just know Ashara as a character in her story she was told by her father (not saying that definitely is the case) then obviously she is going to characterise her as happy/beautiful, saying she had haunting eyes probably wouldn't fit the tone of the story. Also I'm not saying the whole passage is GRRM spouting info for readers about the Tourney, I'm just saying not every single observation made by Howland (being proxied by Meera) needs to be explainable in terms of the interests or desires of that character.

The two manners of characterizing Ashara's eyes are clearly not analogous to one another, they're actually very different, and from there it's for the reader to ask questions as to why two men, Barry and Howland perceive the same woman in such different ways. That's what maidenandwarrior has done, and has actually come up with an original and well supported theory as to why they view her so differently.

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Ha, that's an interesting take. But a few things starting under Harren's roof. Meera does use the Crannogman in the third person when talking about Ashara but it is not the first time in the story or the last. She uses the Crannogman in the third person more often than not. Meera is telling the story so that actually makes perfect sense for her to do.

The maid the Crannog notes as being a beauty the one that he named to his children when he told this story is the "wife of the Dragon prince." Laughing purple eyes is something I note as an important description. The Sigil of the KotLT is the the laughing tree. The sigil is used as a deception in the story to hide the identity of the Knight. Laughing is only used in describing the Knights false sigil and his name, and once with the description of Ashara's eyes.

Durring the party he does focus on a lot of things, a drinking competition which would of lasted awhile and a single event that is Rhaegars sad song, Lyanna, crying, Ben ribbing her, and her dumping wine on his head, this all one event not 3 single events. I don't see any real focus on the dancing. Ned is also Howland's friends so it would be someting he notes later on in the story which he would of told his children well after the events of the tower of Joy, the entire story was told by Howland with the benefit of hindsight. No real focus is placed on Ashara after that and you would think there would be a focus on a mans wife and the love of his life at their first meeting.

Howland has a connection to Ashara via Ned, and Arthur, and Jon. She killed herself. You might ask the same thing of Ned having a connection to her? Neds reaction to Ashara being named by Cat is not a good one. In fact Ned is angry through the entire seen. I find it intresting that many felt Ned was close to Ashara because of this. Which may be true, but I don't read it that way. Ned Stark has never said a good thing about Ashara, not once, is only reaction to her name is that of anger and he never wants her named mentioned again. Arthur on the other hand is remembered with great fondness. Why would Ned become angry over one of his best friends wife? Wylla is the cover story for Jon as noted by Edric and Ned.

Ashara is not ever mentioned again in the story they mention multiple maids who attend Elia, she is not singled out there, Elia is, the maids are much more of a off handed remark. Both Elia, Lyanna, and even Lady Whent get more mention than Ashara. He meets the love of his life and focuses on other women? Shouldn't this be more of a love story if this is the first meeting of his wife, rather than how awesome the KotLT was? The Starks all get more mentions than Ashara. To me it's a story about young Howland and his meeting the Starks for the first time, and his first exposures to the outside world. The story is a point of pride for the Reeds about the actions of there father. The context being they are relating there father to Brans house and talking there dad up a little bit without being obvious.

I don't want to really get into to much more of it at this point. But I would point out that Meera was not concieved at Harrenhal, she is a year to almost 2 years to young. She was born in 283, Harenhal took place in 281, Aegon is concieved within the year between Harrenhal and Roberts rebellion, and is a year older than Jon at least. She was concieved around the time of Robb and Jon.

Also it was confirmed by Martin Dawn is at Starfall.

It's a fun theory and I don't want to break down the whole thing as it is very long. I am sure you spent some time on this and it's an intresting take, but it would take me hours to reply to all of it and go over all of it with quotes from the book and my reply would be as long or longer than you post.

I enjoyed the read none the less. But really, that is a fucking long OP. Seriously, long and a it's a bit Hard to really reply to anything that length.

I am not a big fan of Ashara the saint. Personally I think she caused a lot of problems and guilt is one of the six main causes of suicide.

My own take when reading and writing about ASOIF series, is don't think happy thoughts when studying it, don't think sad thoughts when studing it. Think human nature. It's closer to being it's own unique genre than anyting like a fantasy, action adventue, love story.

I find it intresting at the amount of pure fantasy love stories that fans keep theorizing into the series when we have yet to actually see any sort of romantic love story. Hints at some love stories but nothing really shown yet.

Dany and Drogo, not all that romantic being bought by a murdering rapist slaver.

Jaime and Cersei, really don't need to go into this.

Ned and Cat, practical but not really romantic.

Sansa and Joffery, Sansa is getting her dream, he is a prince he is wonderful he is... oh shit.

Not a whole lot of romace going on in the books, so I am not sure why fans tend to romanticize the story.

The amount of shipping going on in a series that is by and large not very romantic in nature is unbelievable.

Jon and every female alive some males

Sansa and Every male alive and I mean every male

Arya and Edric, Jon, Sandor, Tyrion, Gendry, Tommen,

The list goes on for every character. Even dead characters are being shipped.

You know what I think Martin thinks of romance in his story, Tyrion and Tysha, I think that is what he thinks of romance in this story. Soft, happy, traditional romance is getting crushed by the brtuality that is this world.

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The two manners of characterizing Ashara's eyes are clearly not analogous to one another, they're actually very different, and from there it's for the reader to ask questions as to why two men, Barry and Howland perceive the same woman in such different ways. That's what maidenandwarrior has done, and has actually come up with an original and well supported theory as to why they view her so differently.

Why not just say they characterise her eyes very differently? You confuse the issue by forcing words into a sentence where they don't really belong. If you are immediately sold on the idea that Ashara is Meera's mother due to the fact that Meera thinks of her eyes as beautiful/ laughing whereas Barristan thinks of her eyes as haunting then fair enough, but there are a million potential reasons that this could be the case.

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Thanks for your comment, I just want to clear a few things up.

Meera does use the Crannogman in the third person when talking about Ashara but it is not the first time in the story or the last. She uses the Crannogman in the third person more often than not. Meera is telling the story so that actually makes perfect sense for her to do.

The argument was not on whether or not Meera is describing the crannogman, it is about the fact that he is watching Ashara. Unlike all the laundry list of things going on, Howland is specifically said to be watching Ashara.

The maid the Crannog notes as being a beauty the one that he named to his children when he told this story is the "wife of the Dragon prince."

This is patently untrue. The "maid with laughing purple eyes" is Ashara. Elia Martell did not have purple eyes, and she was a married woman at this point.

I don't see any real focus on the dancing...No real focus is placed on Ashara after that and you would think there would be a focus on a mans wife and the love of his life at their first meeting.

There is focus on the dancing, considering we get a list of all the people Ashara danced with. You don't see Lyanna or Elia or the QOLAB getting their dance card read.

Ashara is not ever mentioned again in the story they mention multiple maids who attend Elia, she is not singled out there, Elia is, the maids are much more of a off handed remark. Both Elia, Lyanna, and even Lady Whent get more mention than Ashara.

Again, this is not true because Ashara is the maid with laughing purple eyes. She gets more mentions than Elia and the QOLAB. Of course Lyanna is in it more, she is most likely the KotLT!

I don't want to really get into to much more of it at this point. But I would point out that Meera was not concieved at Harrenhal, she is a year to almost 2 years to young. She was born in 283, Harenhal took place in 281, Aegon is concieved within the year between Harrenhal and Roberts rebellion, and is a year older than Jon at least. She was concieved around the time of Robb and Jon.

Again, this is untrue. I go by the books, not what is put in the wiki. It is guess-timated on there that Meera was born in 283, but this is not a fact. What is a fact is that in ACOK, she is about to turn sixteen. Jon is fifteen at this time, putting Meera about a year to nine months ahead of him. This would put her conception smack dab around the time of Harrenhal.

Think of it another way. Jaime was fifteen at Harrenhal, and seventeen when KL was sacked. Because of this, people call it two years. But Jaime could have been a day away from sixteen at Harrenhal, and a day into his seventeenth year when he killed Aerys. We just don't know. What we do know is that Meera would have been born in the beginning to middle of the war, while Robb wasn't conceived until after the Battle of the Bells which was three months into the war. There are many people, myself included, who think that Jon is older than Robb.

Also, Lyanna was fourteen at Harrenhal, but sixteen when she died. The same rule applies to her that was applied to Jaime, but even more so because we do not know how long it took for Ned to get from KL to Storm's End to the TOJ. And there is no proof that she had just given birth when Ned arrives. The fact that she is described as dying of fever, suggests childbed fever which can take weeks and months to kill. It can be awful, and malingering.

So was the Rebellion and Harrenhal a two year gap? Maybe. It is never stated explicitly either way and, we simply do not know.

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Op, someone just wafted this under my nose, and i have to say it's really really interesting. I would trim the stuff about Arthur personally. You've presented a completely new idea really well, and it's a shame if people think it's 'too long', there's some amazingly astute observations you've caught.

Thanks for the effort, I'll have to adsorb this for a while, it's taken me by some surprise. I had always thought it was rather shady to know so little about mrs. howland, but i had never considered a twist like your post suggests.

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Again, this is untrue. I go by the books, not what is put in the wiki. It is guess-timated on there that Meera was born in 283, but this is not a fact. What is a fact is that in ACOK, she is about to turn sixteen. Jon is fifteen at this time, putting Meera about a year to nine months ahead of him. This would put her conception smack dab around the time of Harrenhal.

Think of it another way. Jaime was fifteen at Harrenhal, and seventeen when KL was sacked. Because of this, people call it two years. But Jaime could have been a day away from sixteen at Harrenhal, and a day into his seventeenth year when he killed Aerys. We just don't know. What we do know is that Meera would have been born in the beginning to middle of the war, while Robb wasn't concieved until after the Battle of the Bells which was three months into the war. There are many people, myself included, who think that Jon is older than Robb. It is never stated explicitly either way, we simply do not know.

Jon turns 15 on his way to the wall in GOT. There is alot of time that passes before Meera shows up in ACOK. Robb is conceived before the Battle of the Bells as Ned had to marry Cat to ensure Tully support and then marches off to war the next day with Cats dad to rescue Robert. Howland is most likely at the wedding as he fought with Ned during the war. So its safe to assume he had sex with his wife before he left for war, whether at the wedding or back at the Neck. Therefore I think all three are fairly close in age, under six months at least.

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Op, someone just wafted this under my nose, and i have to say it's really really interesting. I would trim the stuff about Arthur personally. You've presented a completely new idea really well, and it's a shame if people think it's 'too long', there's some amazingly astute observations you've caught.

Thanks for the effort, I'll have to adsorb this for a while, it's taken me by some surprise. I had always thought it was rather shady to know so little about mrs. howland, but i had never considered a twist like your post suggests.

Thanks! I am not quite ready to give up on the Arthur part, though I am not wedded to it like the rest of the theory.

I agree, there is something very strange about "Jyana" Reed. She never gets a single mention, outside of the appendix. The name is strangely similar to Lyanna too, which bugs me.

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