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Sly Wren

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  1. Any evidence Lyanna was at all like this? Or any Starks like this? We do see women like this: Selyse and Lysa. Women who believe in a cause and thus willing to give up almost anything for the cause and a beloved. Mel kind of fits, too. But the Stark in that instance, Lyanna's likely son, rejects all of it: Jon is not interested. He's horrified. We even have hints of that cultic mindset in Lady Smallwood--her willingness to shelter the brotherhood, with Tom as her former lover. But Arya, Lyanna's look-alike-niece, is not buying. And the brotherhood isn't pushing anything as intense as "prophecy baby." Whereas we see Lyanna want love and fidelity from Robert--and refusing to lie to herself about how well that might work. Not yet.
  2. An excellent point. And I should have included in my argument that Barristan himself says he wasn't in Rhaegar's inner circle--but I take your point. I would also note, however, a point I make in the OP: Tyrion knows Cersei really, really well. He knows the other potential players in Jon Arryn's murder pretty well, too--has quite a run in with Lysa. And he has an all-but-confession from Pycelle. He's dead sure he knows what Cersei did--he's wrong. We are told by Barristan that he wasn't as close to Rhaegar. And wasn't in on his plans. And Jorah was even further out--given what we've seen of both Ned and Tyrion getting it wrong despite knowing the players well, we have good reason to think Barristan (and Jorah) may not have Rhaegar too well pegged.
  3. Whoops! I did not explain myself well: I do think the KG are guarding Rhaegar's mistress--who is not Lyanna. Lyanna is the hostage/pawn--like Jon, Arya, Sansa. Rhaegar, like Stannis and Mance, has another woman to bear his child. Someone from his inner circle whom he can really trust. Thus: the KG are guarding the mistress/wife/person (not Lyanna) and holding a hostage (Lyanna). The KG need to be there for the wife/mistress/person. Okay--I go into this in more detail with evidence here. But will fully understand if you look at it and think it's way too long. Really short version: Rhaegar's mistress is pregnant, not ready to give birth, but will eventually: Ashara pregnant with Dany. Lyanna is the one giving birth. Neither are in the tower of joy at the time of the fight--it was a stop on the way to a safer castle--Starfall. Like Sansa and Baelish's stop at the Drearfort (a tower of joy for Lysa) was a stop on the way to the Eyrie. The KG know they can't defeat Ned's full force. Period. They have arranged a parlay--that explains why Ned brings such a tiny force. They meet in the Red Mountains at the tower. And the KG choose to fight instead of parlay. That's roughly the current theory I currently subscribe to--likely to change at any moment. But that's it for now. On the bolded. 1. Why? Martin himself has said the "Song of Ice and Fire" is what future generations will call this era. So. . . why assume the bolded is the only way to make it make sense? 2. You also get it if Jon is Stark-Dayne: North and South. Ice and Fire. The two poles of Westeros. 3. You also get it if it's the era of Westeros facing its two greatest threats at once: Ice (Others and Long Night) and Fire (Dragons and Targs). And there are probably other options, too. But the Night/Day is well taken: since Day ends the Long Night. And the Night's King's "enemy" seems likely to be a Day's King.
  4. Okay--I had not heard this. And It would be very intriguing, considering the Tyrells' wealth and original Targ loyalty. On the bolded--any chance you'd elaborate?
  5. Agreed. It's one of the reasons I think Lyanna may have been running from trouble--like Arya does. Only runs from her family when someone comes for her--and then ends up with relatively kind people who still keep her as a hostage: the brotherhood and even the Hound. Ah! I'd forgotten that. Very good point. I will openly admit I'm prejudiced against Jorah's take on Rhaegar. He seems like a Rhaegar fanboy to me. Whereas Barristan, who knew Rhaegar, is less "effusive" about Rhaegar than Jorah. So, I am pre-disposed to think Jorah may be imagining this about Rhaegar based on the kind of man Jorah thought he was--not too unlike Cersei. And I do think taking someone and hiding with her for a year is a bit different than Dany's move. But again, my prejudice could clearly be playing a role here. One way or another, Rhaegar made no attempt to push back on Tywin's plan. It's a really audacious thing for Tywin to say in front of the small council. And Rhaegar makes no pushback--really seems like Tywin had very good reason to know Rhaegar wouldn't object. Plus, we do have hints that Tywin and Rhaegar were in cahoots--over marrying Cersei. How on earth is Tywin so sure that will come off when Aerys has been goading Tywin for years? One very plausible reason: Rhaegar was on board. Agreed it's like Varys and LF. I think Baelish studied Tywing closely. But the World Book makes a strong case that the Darklyns' request was not unreasonable, but Tywin rejected it anyway. And then: The Defiance of Duskendale began quietly enough. Lord Denys, seeing that Aerys's erratic behavior had begun to strain his relations with Lord Tywin, refused to pay the taxes expected of him and instead invited the king to come to Duskendale and hear his petition. It seems most unlikely that King Aerys would ever have considered accepting this invitation...until Lord Tywin advised him to refuse in the strongest possible terms, whereupon the king decided to accept, informing Grand Maester Pycelle and the small council that he meant to settle this matter himself and bring the defiant Darklyn to heel. World Book: The Targaryen Kings: Aerys II I know nothing's set in stone, but that really sounds like Twyin orchestrated this mess--using other people's grievances to get his own enemy dead. Fair enough--but he has autonomy over those KG. And we see the people who hold Stark Maids--they have autonomy. And we've never found out where Rhaegar was or what he was doing when he rode out and supposedly took Lyanna--sounds like Rhaegar had autonomy from the start. But we need more info. I do think there's a decent chance his return may have been a crisis of conscience on Rhaegar's part: we see Stannis have one when Davos tells him he must fight for the realm, not just gain the throne. I've wondered if Arthur, champion of the small folk, might have chided Rhaegar similarly. . . but that's clearly speculation. Maybe--but that's making a big assumption that Lyanna was family vs. a hostage like all of her nieces and her son. But we have pretty decent evidence. True--I've been thinking it could be a lot like Stannis' beliefs. And we see how Stannis' failures weigh on him. How even his deliberate sacrifices/choices weigh on him--like the murder of Renly. And I like the idea that Rhaegar may have had dreams. . . that would fit well. Makes a lot of sense. Or, he really may not have been amorous. Like Stannis--he is obsessed with Mel--for a lot of reasons. And the Watch all know who the real Queen is for Stannis. But Stannis is never "amorous." And Rhaegar, even by those who think he ran off with Lyanna, never seems to be described as amorous--assuming Lyanna was his lover. Or even if (as I think) Ashara was his lover. . . All fair--it's just that those details are tied to the very, very little we know about Lyanna. And Martin did not have to put them in to pursue Sansa's character development or the plot. Was typing my response when I realized I'm not sure what your are getting at with the bolded--any chance you'd elaborate? Hmmmm. . . yes. This may be where the differences in readers come in. I thought he was pushing us hard towards the love scenario and away from unreasonable Robert pretty hard early on. Completely fair.
  6. Yes--the Allyria Dayne possibility is another of my favorites. The "circle" is Arya's being struck when hearing Beric call him "Ned." Arya got goosebumps when Lord Beric said her father's name, but this Ned was only a boy, a fair-haired squire no more than ten or twelve. Storm, Arya VI Why bother with this? Especially since the kid could be named anything? It makes more sense once we learn that Edric has been taught to respect the Starks and taught the stories about Jon Snow and Wylla--when those have been kept silent at Winterfell. No idea if the nickname is to "honor" Ned--but the Daynes are using the same nickname as the man who killed their literal chosen son. And teaching the heir to respect the man who killed their literal chosen son--something's up. We need more info, but something's up. Don't blame you for not reading it. It's got some good info, but the novels are more engaging. Aerys is unpopular and the country is at war. All sorts of things could go wrong--or they'd take all the KG into battle. And Jaime has already proven himself in battle, though he's just a kid. And Aerys' loyalists aren't as potent as KG. Rhaegar does say Aerys wants Jaime close to ward off Tywin--but Rhaegar could have left another KG with Jaime. One with more experience and a more level head. Bottom line: in that convo with Rhaegar, Jaime's making it dead clear he's in no shape to stay alone with Aerys. He's not Hightower or any of the rest--he's a scared, freaked out, disillusioned kid. Why does Rhaegar leave that KG there alone? One very plausible answer has to be that he doesn't want Aerys protected very well. I agree with @Voice and others that there's a whopping good chance he knew Tywin was going march on KL--Tywin clearly planned that in advance. He got there awfully quick after the Trident. Fast than Ned did, and Ned's men were "chasing" the loyalists. Tywin was amassed and ready to march before the Trident was done--maybe even marching before it was done. If the plan was for Tywin to take the city for Rhaegar (which i think it was), pretty sure Rhaegar thought Jaime was much more likely to turn Aerys over to Tywin than any of the other KG would be. Making deposing Aerys easier and less messy. Though I think Tywin planned all along to go with whichever force one--always intended to play both sides. Rhaegar likely knew that, too. But thought he would win.
  7. Oh--I do think they were defending someone. But if the other Stark Maids in the story are any indication, Lyanna was a hostage (like Arya and Jon). If so, the KG aren't guarding her. His son was the important one--TPTWP--and the easiest to get out. Babies are easier to pass off as each other. But yes--it may have just been Varys. But we do not know how driven Rhaegar was: was he emotional? Or more like Stannis? Because he's Lyanna's son not by Robert. Robert's not angry that Rhaegar was a Targ. He hates Rhaegar and his family because he thinks Rhaegar took Lyanna from him. Any man who did that would incur that wrath--as would that man's family. And child--Ned broke from Robert because Robert condoned the murder of the children of the man he thinks took Lyanna. If Jon is Arthur's, I do not think the KG are guarding Lyanna and her baby. They'd be protecting Rhaegar's child by another woman. The Sword of the Morning ending the Long Night. Day's King slays the Night's King--reversing what Ned did at the tower of joy, where a Night's King (Stark) killed a Day's King (Dayne).
  8. Apparently muddled brains are catching--I missed this. I do think Lyanna and Arthur are the most likely. I would prefer Ned was somehow the father--but I think it's likely to be Arthur and Lyanna.
  9. 1. We don't know the KG were protecting Lyanna and her baby. 2. We do know there's a possibility Aegon was saved--I do wonder if Rhaegar knew. .. .If this was a plan with Varys, just in case. . . but that's clearly speculation.
  10. A fair point--that could work. I really doubt Ned and Ashara were lovers, even though I want Ned to be Jon's father. But yes--that is possible. Yes--but we've also seen other houses hold grudges for their dead or injured family members, regardless of how they were hurt or killed. Barbrey's still mad enough to refuse to bury Ned's bones. ETA: Ned only led the party that got Barbrey's husband killed. Whereas Ned and Howland actively killed (it seems) Arthur, the Daynes' literal chosen son. And the Daynes don't just respect Ned. They nickname their heir after him--Martin named Edric Dayne in the Game Appendix--two whole books before Edric appeared. He names no other Martell bannermen by name--only Edric. And then draws a circle around his nickname for readers--that was intentional. And Edric, Lord of Starfall, thinks it's noteworthy that he's milk brothers with the Bastard of Winterfell--it's an odd thing to think. Maybe the Daynes are just really weird. But so far, their take on Ned seems a bit to warm for just "he returned the sword." Even though Jon sees the Sword of the Morning and we're told Starfall remembers him being there? No--the World Book shows clearly that he was down for Tywin's plan to kill Aerys via the Darklyns' Defiance. I do think Tywin was the driving force behind starting the war using Lyanna, and that there's a good chance Rhaegar only found out about it after the fact--and then went along. But it does fit what we see of him in the World Book. And even what we see in Jaime's POV: Rhaegar knows Jaime is completely freaked out. Jaime is not remotely equipped to deal with this mess--anyone can see that. Rhaegar could take Jaime with him. He could leave Darry or Barristan behind to help Jaime--true loyalists with plenty of experience. Instead, Rheagar leaves the most unstable and ill-equipped Kingsguard possible to protect Aerys. Even if Rhaegar was sure he'd win--that strongly suggests he didn't want Aerys well protected. Unless everyone doesn't know he did this--Tywin is suspected with the Darklyns, not Rhaegar. Even though there's no way Tywin would have said what he did if not sure Rhaegar would go along. People seem willing to assume Rhaegar isn't much of a plotter--it's understandable with a force like Tywin to draw attention. But we're shown evidence that Rhaegar was a plotter, too. He was sure with the Darklyns: let others kill Daddy and claim the throne himself.
  11. Absolutely--she's a lot less romantic and idealistic in that moment than we see Sansa be at her tourney. Right--but given that we have a bit of actual evidence on Lyanna, seems like that would take precedence. Fair enough--though exactly what those roses mean in that gradual reveal is still open to interpretation. Not stated that Rhaegar wanted Aerys dead to become king himself. But shown in the World Book: Most of the small council were with the Hand outside Duskendale at this juncture, and several of them argued against Lord Tywin's plan on the grounds that such an attack would almost certainly goad Lord Darklyn into putting King Aerys to death. "He may or he may not," Tywin Lannister reportedly replied, "but if he does, we have a better king right here." Whereupon he raised a hand to indicate Prince Rhaegar. Scholars have debated ever since as to Lord Tywin's intent. Did he believe Lord Darklyn would back down? Or was he, in truth, willing, and perhaps even eager, to see Aerys die so that Prince Rhaegar might take the Iron Throne? World Book: The Targaryen Kings: Aerys II It seems very, very unlikely that Tywin would say something that provocative in front of the small council without knowing that Rhaegar would go along with him. Very likely, they'd discussed this before meeting with the council. No, one way or another, Rhaegar is going along with Tywin's plan to kill Aerys via the Darklyns. How early in the plan Rhaegar was brought in, we aren't told or shown. And Tywin did start early--he seems to have goaded the Darklyns into rebellion and goaded Aerys into going to talk with the Darklyns. I think there's a decent chance, given what we see at the Red Wedding, that Tywin gave the Darklyns "assurances" to goad them into taking Aerys. But wherever in the scenario Rhaegar became aware, he went along. To become king. Rhaegar only came back at the end. And we don't know if that was because he wanted to or got arm twisted into it. ETA: or if he had a crisis of conscience: I've started wondering if Rhaegar had a "Stannis" moment, like when Stannis gets persuaded to change tactics because Davos tells him he must fight for the realm, not the throne. Rhaegar had Arthur--the guy who defended the small folk. Maybe (it's clearly hypothetical) maybe Arthur did what Davos did . . . But one way or another, Rhaegar sat out the very vast majority of that war. As you say, we don't know for sure why, but given that he came back when sent for, and seems to have chosen who stayed behind--seems like Rhaegar had autonomy. As for what to do: he was a beloved, charismatic leader and fighter. Those come in handy when fighting wars. Especially since Aerys was none of that. Okay--are you thinking of some specific clue in the story of this that I'm missing? Depends on what he wanted from it--if, as with Duskendale, he wanted Aerys deposed by others, he got damn close. Deposing Aerys himself splits the Targ loyalty--we're told a few times in the World Book that plenty are still loyal to Aerys. And I'm with you on the bleeding: letting the county bleed was senseless one way or the other: unless he thought that war would serve him. But it's easier to make rebels fall in line if he has something to appease them with, not to mention a potential cover story and ability to blame his father. And as for the loyalists--he does come back to help them then: but holds onto his hostage. We know he was willing at Duskendale. And we know he was willing with the Rebellion. As for his plans, yes: we only have traces of those. But we do know he meant to take the throne and to fulfill the three-headed dragon cult thing. In all that, we see even more of his comparison to Stannis. Not sure I'm following you here--are you assuming he wasn't innately melancholy and serious from the time he was a child? He seems to have been like that through his entire life. . . so, why assume the above? Is there something specific you are thinking of? Agreed--if anything, he seems more like Stannis. All fair--it's just we have so bloody few details. And I do think that's not what went on with Rhaegar and Lyanna--I don't think she was his lover. But I doubt Rhaegar was like that with any lover. Yes--I used to put "stolen" in quotes meaning "kept against wishes" and a bunch of other things. But I thought I was starting to look pretentious. And point well taken--it's one of the scenarios I've wondered about for Lyanna--did she get into a bind and ask the wrong people for help? HA! Whoops! I am the world's sloppiest typist. Though it might explain why Rhaegar was so drop dead pretty. Agreed--but we do see it. It bears comparison because it's with a Stark maid--Lyanna's niece. And from a man with a rose sigil covered in blue flowers. We have very, very little info on what was up with that crowning, but we do know that those things were there in a way. It thus fits better than the Jorah incident. As Cersei's motive for killing Arryn is only inferred and then slowly revealed to Ned. But we have almost nothing else to go on. . . ETA: the question keeps coming up for me: is Martin just leaving us hanging to guess? Or is he giving us info as we go? I really think it's the latter and that's why he gives us markers. . . . But he may be leaving us completely in the dark. But Rhaegar was interested in the purpose of the Harrenhal tourney in the first place. It got mucked up with Aerys. But Rhaegar still had that objective. And we see a much more skilled knight cheating. And we see Barristan describe losing to Rhaegar as Unknightly--which is weird. There's nothing unknightly about losing a fair fight. So far, we've got no evidence he did anything--no message, no futile begging. Nothing. Ah! Fair point. I should have looked it up and not run on memory. Yes--Martin presents it and then quickly pushes us against the first alternative, though it takes characters longer to get there. And both readers and characters get it wrong. With R+L, we are pushed less obviously towards the "love" option--shown much, much less--but we are pushed. And then told very clearly that the characters who express opinions on the subject choose the love option. Whether readers and characters are as wrong as with Arryn's death--that's still gotta be a possibility. Completely fair. You've more than given me a fair hearing. On the first bolded--but, the ones I compare are Lyanna-related Stark maids. On the second bolded: I fully agree. And I never intended otherwise: the story works for the characters themselves. AND the markers give us info on the past. That's the premise. My apologies if I've messed that up.
  12. AH! Okay. My best guess? The World Book notes how paranoid Aerys is at the point. I think he sent Steffon because Steffon was a really old friend--he wanted someone he could trust. But that's a guess. Problem: we don't have any evidence that Rhaegar tended to behave this way. We have stories that the small folk loved him, but I couldn't find talk of his overt concern for them--please correct me if you've found what I could not. Rhaegar focuses on his general mission, his books, his prophecy, his role. A lot like Stannis. Arthur's the one noted for caring for the small folk, attending to their need to win them over and stop the Kingswood Brotherhood. A bit more like Davos, who specifically reminds Stannis that he must fight for the realm and not the throne. Would make more sense, given the very, very little we know, for Arthur to be the rescuer, if such a scenario were the case. Hypothetically. Agreed--one way or another, Lyanna clearly contributed to the mess. Agreed--and agreed on the bolded: we have nowhere near enough to pin down exactly what Ned's reaction means. Still plenty of other potentials possible.
  13. I can buy a lot of this--I really struggle with the inversion readings of the text. But the rest? Yes. Yes--I had thought this was tied to the Boltons "anti Stark" qualities. The fact that they have a long history of skin people instead of being actual skin changers, like the ancient and current Stark Wargs, etc. So taking the title, being the "Anti-Jon Snow"--seems like that would fit. Yes--nice symmetry either way. It would be a great twist. And no worries about off topic--my threads always turn into sandboxes. No idea how--but they always do.
  14. No--Tywin had been swallowing insults from Aerys for years. Enduring Aerys' growing paranoia and hostility. Then Aerys refused to marry Rhaegar to Cersei and refused to appoint Jaime as Rhaegar's squire. Appointed sons of Tywin's enemies instead--clearly goading Twyin. Then, as @nanother noted elsewhere, Tywin seems to have goaded the Darklyns into rebellion and goaded Aerys into going to meet the Darklyns. I wonder, too, if Tywin gave the Darklyns some assurances--like he gave to the Freys. Then Tywin approved the plan to attack, despite the protest that it would kill Aerys. And Rhaegar was right there. In the room with Tywin. And did nothing to protest or stop it. This was a plot to get Aerys dead via other people's grievances. The same basic move Tywin used later with the Freys at the Red Wedding. Possible--though there's no way on earth Rhaegar didn't know the history of Targs opposing each other. He wanted a confab. But he had to know that killing his father would be necessary at some point. To repeat what I said to @lalt,we have very good reason to believe Rhaegar was up for Tywin's plan to let Aerys die at Duskendale. A plan that looks like it was a fairly elaborate set up. Plus, Rhaegar stayed out of the war for a reason--like Tywin and even the Freys, he stayed out until he had to enter--I think he'd planned to come in when he wanted to and Aerys forced his hand. And when Rhaegar did come back, he did NOT bring "Hightower the Dedicated" to guard Aerys. He left Aerys with 16 year old Jaime--terrified, traumatized, begging-to-go-with-Rhaegar Jaime--that's who Rhaegar chose. There's a case to be made Rhaegar wanted the protection around Aerys to be as unstable and bad as possible. And that Rhaegar knew that Tywin was planning to take King's Landing--and thought Jaime would help Tywin, not Aerys. If so--Rhaegar kinda got it right. He doesn't have to had taken her from the outset--he could have found her and kept her--to keep the war going. Or a few other things I posit in the thread I linked earlier in this post. But the country was really tense. And Rhaegar and/or Twyin did not have to predict everything. They just had to stir the pot, reassess, and stir again. As Tywin does with Robb and the Freys and Robb and the Westerlings. As Baelish does with Ned. They can't predict exactly what will happen, but the fact that word seems to have gotten to Brandon before it got to Rickard--sounds like there's a very good chance someone was trying to anger the Stark known to have the wildest nature. For maximum effect.
  15. It's a very possible reading. Though if he's a son of Dorne and the North, he's ice and fire, too. But we do see some kind of odd sorrow about Arthur--Bran's little, but he notes that Ned gets sad talking about and singing Arthur's praises. Ned shows no such emotion about the other two KG, let alone Rhaegar. Why does Arthur merit this? Plus there's the Daynes' odd respect for Ned. Nowhere near enough to prove anything--but enough to ask questions. Agreed--though there's the fear of Robert to deal with. And, if Arthur is Jon's father, Ned's not just protecting Jon, he's protecting the Daynes. Yup. But it works for other father options, too. But it is info to fear getting out. Do we see Ned fearing this? I'm having a brain freeze. . . any chance you have the reference? Not doubting you--am just in a brain fog. Possible--though the one thing Ned broke with Robert on was the killing of the children of the man Robert thought had taken Lyanna from him. Yup. It's another layer of fear. Yes on this--plus we also know that the Starks, Arryns, Tullys, and Baratheons we forming alliances by marriage. And the Starks didn't have a history of marrying outside the North--this was new. Rhaegar may (this is obviously theory) have been concerned about this. . . No--we have very good reason to believe he was up for Tywin's plan to let Aerys die at Duskendale. Plus, he stayed out of the war for a reason--like Tywin and even the Freys, he stayed out until he had to enter--I think he'd planned to come in when he wanted to and Aerys forced his hand. And when he came back, he did NOT bring Hightower the dedicated to guard Aerys. He left Aerys with 16 year old Jaime--terrified, traumatized, begging to go with Rhaegar Jaime--that's who Rhaegar chose. There's a case to be made Rhaegar wanted the protection around Aerys to be as unstable and bad as possible. And that he knew what Tywin was planning--and thought Jaime would help Tywin, not Aerys. If so--Rhaegar kinda got it right. Yes--that's always the issue. It is very tempting--and I think Baelish paid attention to what happened in Robert's Rebellion--he uses a few of Tywin's techniques.