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Curled Finger

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  1. Could be, for it is possible, that Martin wasn't making a statement about androgynous (pick your term) folk at all in Brienne. Could be he's met people like her among his many travels and just likes them as interesting characters? Just a thought. Sexual identity is not all a person has to offer, as we see in Brienne, Renly and Cersei. Look at someone like Sandor who has zero sexual interest at all that I remember. Big macho blow hard willing to hide behind ransoms to protect a child. You may see him differently, but that was my take away. People are far more than their sexual, religious, dietary, political or cultural persuasions. These are mere building blocks to overall character. Enjoy Brienne for all she is, for there is a great deal to be inspired by in this young person.
  2. Perhaps the "good" Daynes know exactly where young Ned is and old Darkstar will get quite the surprise when he goes to take Dawn.
  3. Sorry, I simply don't recognize these hints. Jamie is a king slayer or breaker, as the case may be. This suits his character as well as Dany, Jon and Tyrion's visions of a changed world. While I agree that there are certain hints that Jamie will protect Jon as part of his brotherhood vows to Rhaegar, (and mutual interest) Jon's is not a political campaign so much as a defensive military movement. This also suits Jamie's character as a respected commander of armies. Connections are there all over the place. All this Nissa Nissa talk for example. Jon getting stabby as unlikely as that may seem at this point. The Valonqar prophecy most of us like to place right at Jamie's feet. When Cersei is gone and Jon is still goo goo eyed over the Dragon Queen, I wonder why it doesn't occur to more folks that Jamie may become a Queen slayer in the end to complete his arc...for love and honor or simple madness of his own?
  4. Ah @kissdbyfire, brilliant discussion. For my part, I see a disconnect not between vows and morality but between people and their job descriptions. It is natural for human beings to grow and deepen and become enlightened in the mechanical, automated performance of every day duties. They find shortcuts as a matter of efficiency and in that efficiency they perfect their duties. In that perfection of duties their understanding will also become more perfect. This is what I see in characters such as our knights, the soldiers Lannister, Selmy, Clegane, Brienne and Snow. At their posts long enough, under enough stress, with enough moral fortitude and experience to change with their jobs. There are no perfect people. There are no perfect soldiers. Cyborgs are required for that. In the case of Selmy, a daring and near perfect knight, perhaps the man needed to fall in love from afar to discover the rage that spurred him to ultimately reject retirement and cross the world to find a queen he could give himself completely to. His unrealized love for Dayne being the spark that drove his old man's heart to new heights of daring he was so famous for in his youth. He was a kingsguard. He will always be a defensive soldier. That is his job. The difference now is he does it for love instead of glory. This is the evolution of his heart and mind and his understanding of the meaning of his vows. I think this can be applied to all our subjects in their ways. The experiences they all share is perhaps being knights of a fashion, vows taken or not, and finding someone they love. Clegane found Sansa and Arya, little girls to love and protect despite his disdain for knights. Brienne found Jamie whom she detested and vice versa, bringing out the very best in each other. Jon loved Ygritte beyond the boundaries of his vows and learned to love a nation of people for it. One cannot overestimate the power of love nor the transformative power it holds over even a knight's mind.
  5. It's fun to imagine a whole bunch of them alive when they are so obviously dead. I meant Bran, not Brandon. Afterall, a whole bunch of folk saw him die with his brother, right?
  6. Our first good look at Sybell comes through Jamie Lannister's eyes. He is not impressed. Her actions are hard as are her words to her daughter we are already predisposed to think kindly of. There is some masterful writing where Jeyne Westerling is concerned here. Sybell's behavior dictates our reactions, not necessarily Jamie's reactions to her. Jamie tends to be more polarizing than sympathetic. During Jamie's negotiations with Sybell we learn of her agreement with Tywin to secure marriages and upgrades for all her children as well as Castamere for their family seat. There was no design or intent to harm any of her children. Sybell's anger toward Jeyne is Jeyne's reluctance to give up on Robb and his rebellion and go along quietly. Sybell is a nasty piece of work, but Jeyne is not helping herself even a little bit in the Westerlands community is she? The Knight of Seashells is only missing. No body has turned up. Granted, he could be dead. Just as Ashara Dayne, The Knight of Skulls and Kisses and Brandon Stark could be dead. Alas, there is no proof of death. Funny how even witnesses to a person's death can get a story wrong in ASOIAF. Jeyne was at Riverrun and her brother was at the Twins when the Red Wedding occurred. Jeyne, as far away, protected and safe as she was, ended up in custody while her brother has yet to be found. Perhaps he is dead and perhaps he has gone to ground, taken in by any number of Stark or Tully supporters in the Riverlands.
  7. I subscribed to MGM+ specifically to watch The Winter King having been mesmerized by the story with my recent first reading. The show is not that story. Black Merlin did not bother me. Young kind Merlin did. While I am sort of enjoying the show, it is not telling the book story which is a shame because the book story is brilliant. However, society in this day and age is not ready for that story. I get that. No one wants Christianity to be the bad guy. There was such a primal beauty in druidism as told in the story. It was a central theme for crying out loud. Nice young Merlin isn't part of the real tale. I figure the writers will give Merlin's story line to Nimue or nut their Merlin up real quick. So far The Winter King does not suck for what it is. It's not the Corwell story. The writers missed that boat at the gate and that is a shame because that is a great spin on the Arthurian tale. The show has potential and I expect to keep watching because it scratches an itch. So long as I don't expect the show to be the books and stay in their lane it is a decent story with good actors and lush scenery. The man who plays Owain is fantastic. I like the Arthur, Derfel and Nimue actors a lot. Then there are characters who are nothing like the book characters at all such as Morgan and Samsun. I am dreading what Lancelot and Guinevere will be. I don't care what color or race actors are. Any good actor can own a role. The problem we as viewers face is terrible writing, my friends. Sadly, this poor guy with the Merlin yoke was given a character we can't fathom. Had they written the character true, we wouldn't care if he was a purple fat woman.
  8. Yah, it's clear you enjoy the opportunity to jump in to criticize one of the finest female characters ever written by an American. It's a shame. You have the best personality for a place like this. Fearless, fun and relentless. I tried to reply to one of your topics earlier today and have no idea what you said in response to me. This is getting to be a very weird and boring place, but mostly just weird. I don't get it any more. OP, this sort of thing is neither fun nor entertaining. How about someone sends me a raven when Westeros.org returns to normal?
  9. Why is this important? What light does it shed on either character or their trajectories? You already have a list of Dany's transgressions going only a few posts in. Who are you gunning for in this and why?
  10. We are told specifically that the COTF interceded on the Last Hero/humanity's behalf and that they supplied weapons to be used effectively against the Others. The Wiki used to say the Others were pushed back to the Lands of Always Winter indicating that they were not defeated. Cultures around the world claim various things ended the Long Night. A woman with an animal tail, minor gods singing a song in harmony...there are many offerings to the legend with little explanation as to how these people or events actually impacted TLN or the Others. What the legend from the North does is mention the Others, which none of the other legends do, identifying the cause of The Long Night, giving more detail to the cause and effects of this problem. Then again, our story takes place in Westeros so this is where we are most likely to derive the most story and rich detail. There is a timeline to this tale. If nothing else is apparent it is that there is a cost for power, political or magic. The Wall is enormous power, as I believe the Nights Watch is supposed to be. We aren't told who TLH is, nor his companions. I have spent years trying to piece together who they could have been. Who their current story counterparts may be and why. What Valyrian Steel means in a new Battle for Dawn. What Dawn means, if anything at all, in this show down. Surely a title Sword of the Morning relates to the Age of Heroes and the Battle for Dawn. I'm not convinced that TLH and 13th LC of the NW are the same person. Seems to me he would be a very old man and I can't reconcile why a man known as the Last Hero of the Age of Heroes would have to wait 13 turns of an order he establishes to become its commander. Or become corrupted by the very beings he fought so hard to vanquish. I just don't see it. The Others weren't defeated at all. Whatever weaponry and magic were used against them pushed them back. They were pushed far enough back for a powerful ward to be placed and a much smaller wall to be built. Could be they were placed in a state of stasis or imprisoned in some way for a while. Could be there was a finite amount of time placed on The Other state of imprisonment or sleep. Could be a time frame on pacts has run out. Could be they are dying out as the Giants and Children of the Forest are and this is their last hurrah.
  11. Fine. Conquest is bitchen. Royal blood lines are lame. Still, much as I enjoy Stannis, he is a mad man, burning people and forcing a new faith on a land with 2 firmly established faiths leading to further senseless death. Ethics and morality need to count in here somewhere. Stannis is a murderer outside simple conquest. Further, he is a kinslayer. Bad show. Bad example. Most unkingly behavior. Aegon is not the son of Rhaegar. He is the figure head for a sell sword company of failed Blackfyres, displaced lords and foreigners who have no place in Westeros nor its politics. Aegon is a social experiment. A dream. A trick and no more. Fortunately, he brings with him a secret deadly epidemic that will ruin his campaign and if the gods are good, his backers. Again, unkingly behavior. The Baratheon children in Cersei's line are Lannisters through no fault of their own. That doesn't give them the right to anything. Go west or anywhere, but go away and take your drunken insipid mother with you. They are inconsequential. Cersei is the problem and has already show on numerous occasions she simply needs to be far removed from power. Inhuman behavior. Euron Greyjoy is too strange and cruel to do more than kill and maim. Only fools and masochists would back him as a ruler. He's just weird. Daenerys Targaryen is a magical being and a conqueror with many strengths, but no real experience ruling and no experience at all in Westeros. She is a foreigner and her army, like Aegon's, will be comprised of foreigners. Without domestic allies she has no hope of becoming anything other than hated and feared in Westeros. She gets on the Defeat The Others bandwagon real fast or goes and pouts somewhere else. There are no other good fights in Westeros. Review of the list shows there are no other really good guys in Westeros, either. The North is her only hope. She has potential, but needs a lot more help than she realizes. Arianne Martell can't even kill a child with the help of knights or seduce the man she lost her virginity to, how could she possibly rule the seven kingdoms? Margaery Tyrell is the sitting Queen and appears to be a decent person. She is somewhat politically savvy and seems to care for people beyond herself implying she might be a progressive thinker. However, her future looks very dark and it is doubtful she will remain in power for long tied to Tommen. Her power as a Tyrell is equally as dubious. Should she survive she would make a good advisor, but no competition for the likes of Daenerys or Stannis. Jon Snow has no current claim to the IT, but it's coming and he won't want it. Whether he's forced, tricked or seduced into it remains to be seen. Jon's record sets the standard for future reign. He would be reluctant and progressive, he would make mistakes and come up with bright solutions. He would be a diplomat and make few public appearances. He would be steady. But could he actually gain the alliances of any of the above mentioned contenders' forces in the events of their deaths? Would the Unsullied and Dothraki and Golden Company or Dorne follow Jon? How much death would result if Jon was the last man standing to rally the forces? It takes more than brute force and good claim to rule a kingdom. The point of all this was simply to stress that point. It takes character and disposition and respect and foresight. As I see it Westeros has suffered in the hands of many bad rulers and prospered a little in the hands of a very few good. In the end, Westeros should progress into a new age where magic isn't needed by the land to go on. People should be able to propel this place into a prosperous future with normal seasons, harvests, catastrophes and progressions. People should be able to die and stay dead just as weirwoods should all turn to stone. Eventually.
  12. I assume the names become available to me as soon as Arya is aware that she can make this prayer in the story, during her travels with Yoren. Ned is dead, Tyrion is captive, Cersei and Joffrey are running the capital so capably all alone. Much as I would have liked to have seen what Tywin would have done without his golden children, I can't really waste good wishes on those 3, so Tywin is my sacrifice name. Too powerful. Take Tywin out and Frey has no teeth or connection, only a bitter taste in his mouth for a likely winning young man with a good chance of being king. Take Tywin out and The Battle of the Blackwater ends with Stannis on the Throne most likely and I would have loved to have read Cersei's attempts to save herself or not in that case. Varys, for obvious reasons and fricken Little Finger for the same obvious reasons. These are the power houses and movers in Westeros. Remove them and the game plays out very differently.
  13. But there are Others and COTF and Direwolves and Giants. Maybe I just don't understand? Do you mean like yes there are Others, but they didn't ride giant ice spiders? What am I not getting here?
  14. I apologize for being obtuse. In rereading the entire passage it certainly appears that there was enough death and blood spilling to call up an ocean during these Rhoynish/Valyrian encounters. I don't know that blood magic works like Melisandre performs it. Kills someone and things happen. I think blood spilled is retained in the memory of the trees, the water, the ground, wherever it happens and that it probably enough. Although there is likely something to be said for intentional blood magic as well. There is a passage about the Rhoyne in The Long Night about their minor gods having to get together to sing a song to end the Winter. Theirs is the only tale like this, about cooperation. It's lovely and leads me to think the power in this river may not be naturally war like, but one of peace and harmony. That a magical disease such a greyscale would rise from this place makes sense. This place wants to be undisturbed in the ruins of its horror.
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