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Sly Wren

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  1. Perhaps a hint of the Night's King? He seems to have been put down by his brother--could easily be a NW brother. But since we have traces of the Sword of the Morning and Sword of the Evening in Dorne (traces I think are tied to the Night's King)--perhaps the Starks having one in Winterfell and one at the Wall--a hint at the need to guard? And to be on guard for another Night's King?
  2. I've been thinking for a while that the Wall and Dawn go together. Jon took a breath of the crisp morning air and allowed himself to hope. The eastern sky was pink near the horizon and pale grey higher up. The Sword of the Morning still hung in the south, the bright white star in its hilt blazing like a diamond in the dawn, but the blacks and greys of the darkling forest were turning once again to greens and golds, reds and russets. And above the soldier pines and oaks and ash and sentinels stood the Wall, the ice pale and glimmering beneath the dust and dirt that pocked its surface. Storm, Jon IV I've even got a crackpot theory about Serwyn of the Mirror Shield--that it's really about Ice Dragons and the Wall. Jon sees himself in the wall, like a mirror. Melisandre's flame show with Stannis' sword lights up the Wall. Jon dreams of himself on the Wall, "armored in ice," red blade in his fist--what happens if Dawn really burns? Like dawn? Shining off that Wall? Could that kill the ice dragon? Seems possible. YUP! The oath is about humans with attributes, acting like a force--a sword, a horn, a Wall. Keeping the oath for justice--not domination or greed or vengeance. OOHHH! I hadn't thought of it that way! Very cool idea! So, the Others are those who failed to fly? Flying--as in connecting with all the earth. The song of the earth. Those who fail to do that, just fly for power (like Euron) become abominations? Am I getting close to what you're thinking? Could be. I'm still holding to the idea that Jon will "wake the sleepers" in the crypts. The kings deep in the crypts whose tombs will open. But Bran, down in the dark? I could absolutely buy this. Question: why with Ice?
  3. The bolded is one of the reasons I've changed my mind on anyone "fixing" the seasons at the end of the books. I think this world is fallen--like all of his worlds. And the Fall is permanent--Martin doesn't have a Christ figure coming (unlike Robert Jordan, to some extent). So, if my mad speculation about Jon and Dawn holds, it would just be one win--and not a permanent righting of the seasons, let alone a social or political utopia. It would just be a doorway to the "dream of spring." Not a "promise" of spring. Because all the things that made the world fall remain, no matter how "Just" Jon is. Or how well the Stark bastard raised by Ned rises up to administer Justice.
  4. YUP!!! And, in my humble opinion, he got her in the form of Dany--via Ashara. OOOHHH! Very interesting! Could explain how Varys and Illyrio got their hands on it . . . Workable. I also think it was possible someone else attacked Lyanna (I agree she was unlikely to be with Brandon at the time of assault) and she ran (my money would be on a lackey of Tywin). Like Arya does. Lyanna then ended up with either Rhaegar and his KG, of the KG found her and took her to Rhaegar (like Ygritte gets Jon to Mance and the Brotherhood gets Arya). As for witnesses . . . I've wondered for a while if the "Rhaegar took her!" was a planted story. 1. I agree Ned found out she was never raped. 2. Agree on the bolded--but I favor the first: Rhaegar and his KG held onto her. A useful hostage. Like the Brotherhood hold Arya. But she could have hidden. 3. It is heavily implied that Ned knew where to go to find those KG--really think they sent word to lure Ned for a parlay. . .
  5. Agreed--And I reserve the same right (a good thing, since I change my mind all the time!). As for the "Love Story"--the ground is very shaky. Not gone--can't say that until/unless we get more books. But shaky. And porous. Not sure--but I think a key point is a Day's King. The Sword of the Morning. Throwing down the Night's King--like the old story. Exactly what that looks like . . . not sure. I put up an OP a while ago that Jon will finally execute the person in the Black Gate. I think the Night's King was "thrown down"--not executed justly as Ned taught his kids to do. Instead, the fallen Night's King got tortured for power (turned into the Black Gate) instead of executed with justice. Vengeance and power cause chaos, darkness, winter. Justice comes with Dawn. I think it's one of the key conflicts of the novels--the cruelty of the Others, torture killing Raymar for pleasure in the the Game Prologue, vs. Ned's justice, the beginning of the first chapter of Game, riding out to administer justice at Dawn. The "king's justice." I don't think that's the "King of Westeros." I think it's the justice of the Day's King (Sword of the Morning) vs. the power hungry shenanigans of the Night's King. I think Jon, "an old hand at Justice" (according to Bran in the first Game chapter), will administer justice with Dawn. I used to think that would end the problem of the seasons. But . . . I'm much less sure now. Given all of Martin's other stories, I'm thinking the damage that caused the crazy seasons might be permanent. And need to be dealt with ever so often in the fallen world that is Westeros. But all of that is clearly speculation. Ned fears Robert's jealousy. Maybe rightly. Maybe wrongly. Maybe both Ned and Lyanna overreacted--but they clearly fear something. And Robert doesn't hate Rhaegar and the Targs because they are Targs. He hates them because Rhaegar took the woman Robert loved away from him. So, Robert would hate any man who "took" his love away. Rhaegar, Arthur, or just Stable Boy #4. And Ned fears that hate and rage. So--mum's the word about any father of Jon--if Jon's mom is Lyanna.
  6. A story with flowers blue as the eyes of death: The Others are the "problem" to be solved. I've seen others make that argument, too. Real roses? You can dry them, but the resulting color isn't particularly vivid. Hellebore? No clue. But one way or the other, pretty sure those rose petals against the blood-streaked sky are an image. Ned conflating things in his imagination. Seems very unlikely that someone chucked a bunch of rose petals into the air right before the fight. . . No question: hiding her at the Quiet Isle would work. But the novels also show how easily Stolen Stark maids can hide in plain sight. Sansa's got a price on her head--and so far (at least), she's staying safe in plain sight. Arya? Lady Smallwood clearly suspects something's up and makes Arya bathe and dress up. But she doesn't ask for details because of her affinity for the Brotherhood (and Tom). And Arya, like Sansa, hides under aliases pretty well. So, if Lyanna's abductors were like Baelish or the Brotherhood, they could hide her almost anywhere--long as they had hair dye, or sympathetic allies ready to turn a blind eye. So--Starfall might work really well for a hiding place, too. @LynnS: on the growth places of Hellebore from the previous thread. Of course--just noting that if those roses are hellebore, real-world hellebore can grown in some pretty hot, dry places. So, they might be able to get them for her room, even in Dorne. Maybe.
  7. Very cool! One way or another, Horned God Robert's death is a shift. And Ned, a Night's King Stark being imprisoned and soon to be sacrificed by an unjust king and his unjust executioner (using Payne means Joff does NOT follow Ned's teachings on Justice)--it does feel like that might be speeding up the turn to Winter. The turn to Winter's been happening for a while--but that set of deaths, arguably could even call them "sacrifices"--with those deaths, Winter comes sooner.
  8. My money's on Lyanna was a useful hostage who ended up pregnant due to mutual lust--my money's on Arthur. This created a big problem for Rhaegar: pregnant Lyanna was a much worse bargaining hostage than virginal Lyanna. Either way--they decided to hide Lyanna the hostage at the extremely secluded Starfall. And Jon was born there. Maybe. This and the rest of your post has gotta be on the table--especially considering Rhaegar's Summerhall creepiness. I just have a really hard time with Ned's neutral attitude towards Rhaeagar if this was the plan. And have a hard time with why Ned showed up with only a few companions--seemed like he would have had a lot more people to make absolutely sure they won. The small numbers make better sense with a parlay . . . at least to me. But. . . no way to rule out that Rhaegar might have contemplated your ideas. Just no way to eliminate it without the next books. No way I can see, at least.
  9. Well, I think you are probably aware of my Dayne-blindness by now--but yes. I think Ned's misery about that fight is directly tied to Arthur--the only one he speaks of admiring directly. Even Bran notes it. Arthur, the last one Ned sees before the fight starts and Lyanna screams. That last fight--pretty sure Ned thought it was a surrender. The KG either lied or decided to fight anyway. True knights, to the best of their abilities. As you say--it comes up again and again. The True Knight vs. the Smiling Knight or the Night's King. The three KG are trying to be true knights. But Arthur--he matters most to Ned. And Ned--he matters a lot to the Daynes. Nice! though this doesn't preclude that part of those promises might be tied to this moment. That the outcome of the fight led to a need for promises. . . Though I also think there's a whopping good chance the 3KG arranged this "surrender"/Parlay themselves. And that's why Ned came with a small force. The KG are like Jon being sent to kill Mance: no chance to win, but gonna do their best. Like Dunk trying to parlay with the Widow--that one works out, but really could have failed. Loving the bold! And it works--especially with the "blue as the eyes of death." I looked a while ago--that's the only time something has been compared to the Others' eyes. Lyanna's cry, a banshee cry, over the horror of this fight and what it will bring? And (for me) a portent of the horror of the death of Arthur, the KG Ned sees last before the fight, the only KG Ned really mourns. . . So--a portent for the return of the Others? I know you think Jon was probably at the tower, but I think he and Lyanna were at Starfall. I do think he also returned Arthur's sword out of honor. But Arthur may have had enough breath to tell Ned where Lyanna was . .
  10. Maybe--but according the "infallible" Wikipedia, Hellebore varieties grow in southern Italy, southern Greece, Turkey, into the middle east--place that can get pretty hot and dry. No idea how cold Dorne gets in winter, let alone how realistic Martin is being if the winter roses are hellebore--but Dorne really might be workable. OH! Absolutely! Unless Lyanna died in that tower, there's a whopping good chance Ned is lying. If she did die in childbirth, he's clearly lied about that, too. Yup. I tried to figure out ways Rhaegar would be "innocent" of the mess of the war--can't do it anymore. Really think he fully intended for that war to happen. To use it to get rid of Aerys. He would have used them. No question. Look at his creepy fascination with Summerhall. Yet another reason I really think Dany is his--they are dragons. Entitled. High-minded. And dangerous.
  11. Well, if the blue roses do turn out to be hellebore--they grow lots of places and climates. And it was winter. So--can't see how that takes the Red Mountains off the map. But--Ned could have lied completely about where Lyanna died--the Appendix shows in-world knowledge. But something about that fight at the toj is clearly tied to Lyanna. Something about Starfall is tied to Jon. Really think it went down in Dorne.
  12. Yup! And then, just a few chapter later, he shows how a wild-wolf-maid loves flowers. Seems on point. He said basically what I just said. Just wanted to be sure to give credit where it's due. I have OCD issues. Yup! Dany buys the love story. But no one who knew Rhaegar ever seems to present him as lusty. Really think he was likely a lot more like Stannis. Very iron, very singular minded--dangerous. It's one of the reasons I can't write of the "baby sacrifice" theory, even though I do not like it.
  13. As is Bael the Bard--Ygritte says it flat out that Bael claims all the maids he seduced loved him, regardless of the truth. Illusions Bael tells others--and maybe even himself. But the tale is really much darker. And ends in kinslaying. And the Bael Maid killing herself over that kinslaying--reality showing up and hitting hard. As you have noted many times, Professor Crow, Martin's made it very clear: we should be very wary of the love stories told by Bards. All illusions.
  14. Oh, yes--the tie between sweetness and even affection with poison--that's something Martin does a lot. The other thing that strikes me about the poison kisses is what @Voice pointed out years ago: how Arya likes flowers. She collects them. Counts all the new ones they find in the Neck. Gathers them up to gift to family. And if they hurt her? Easy fix with mud. None of that is romance. It's all adventure and exploration and gifts to beloved family. Really think it changes the romantic frame some reader put on the roses. But the idea that lovely, loving gifts could accidentally be poison? Yes--that fits with the faceless men very well. I'm still thinking that's Sansa--and that she may end up pretty poisonous herself to Baelish. After all, as Merillion insists on telling her, she is a Roadside Rose, dressed in blue.
  15. So--basically Lyanna's blue roses are "Bitterblooms?" And thus--a lot like Arya's "poison kisses?" None of which stopped Arya, of course. One day she came back grinning her horsey grin, her hair all tangled and her clothes covered in mud, clutching a raggedy bunch of purple and green flowers for Father. Sansa kept hoping he would tell Arya to behave herself and act like the highborn lady she was supposed to be, but he never did, he only hugged her and thanked her for the flowers. That just made her worse. Then it turned out the purple flowers were called poison kisses, and Arya got a rash on her arms. Sansa would have thought that might have taught her a lesson, but Arya laughed about it, and the next day she rubbed mud all over her arms like some ignorant bog woman just because her friend Mycah told her it would stop the itching. Sansa I: Game. GRRM really likes this trope.
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