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Everything posted by Therae

  1. @kissdbyfire Sorry for the long response time--WFH somehow takes more time than it did in the office. I don't disagree with anything you've said. I hope you're well, btw!
  2. @James Steller I'm with you. My whole point is that Manderly's morality is questionable, not that he's one of the villains of the piece. And I am absolutely, positively, in no way attempting to say the Freys (especially Rhaegar Frey & Co.) were innocent lambs ebully done in by ebul Lord Too-Fat-To-Sit-A-Horse.
  3. Fair points, but if Haggon the Wildling considers eating the flesh of man while in the body of a wolf to be abomination (Dance, Prologue), I don't think many of the First Men were likely to be down with eating the flesh of man while in their own bodies. Manderly is pretty obviously channeling Titus Andronicus (the Rat Cook was channeling Atreus), who was arguably deranged by his grief and rage. Manderly was provoked, but I think he had a very good idea what he was doing. I don't think that makes him a straight up sociopath, but it definitely doesn't give morally-superior points.
  4. I didn't say he was evil. I love old Wyman, but that doesn't make him shiny and pure. Whatever the Freys did is on them, and everyone understands them to be cursed for it. What Wyman does is on Wyman. Feeding people to people is not meant to showcase his heroism, and not all the people he fed them to were Freys and Boltons. Every northern family represented there lost sons at the Red Wedding, and while Manderly may have been down with eating his enemies, I imagine most folks would prefer not to. You can just pooh-pooh anything he does, no matter how horrific, because revenge, but do you honestly think Sweetie would have eaten a slice of Frey and mushroom pie given the chance?
  5. Um. It's nothing whatsoever like that, and what we know about Wyman Manderly strongly suggests that this is exactly what he did. We know the Freys went missing after leaving White Harbor. (DwD, Reek III) We know Wyman made a very big deal about leaving them with guest gifts. (DwD, Ghost in Winterfell) We know he brought pies for the wedding and personally served them to everyone. We also know he ate slices from each. (DwD, Prince of Winterfell) We know about the convergence of pies and guest right from the tale of the Rat Cook. (SoS, Bran IV). Ramsay may be the most vile character in the whole story, and Roose may be an evil motherfucker, but Wyman ain't no innocent.
  6. This. Manderly is no gentle giant. He's more loyal to the Starks than the Boltons, but that's not saying much, and old Wyman is no less out for himself and his own. Also there is the small matter of the Frey pies. I mean, that's awfully dark--and he fed them to EVERYONE at the wedding. Like, sure, he was careful to avoid the curse of the Rat Cook by making sure guest right no longer applied, but there is something really, really wrong with feeding Freys to everyone at the party, not to mention making sure you eat some of each pie yourself. That bespeaks of more than a little moral turpitude.
  7. I see no particular reason why Jon's "true Targaryan name" wouldn't be Jon Targaryan (assuming he is legit; if not, his true name is Jon Snow). Never minding that it's as likely as not Rhaegar had no idea Lyanna was pregnant when he went off to war, the mother got to name the babies -- see @Lollygag's GRRM SSM above -- and they aren't bound to stick by the (official) father's family names. All Cersei's children, for example, have historically Lannister names*. If Lyanna lived long enough to give any thought to naming her baby at all, it doesn't seem likely she'd name him anything that would scream DRAGONSPAWN!!! in a kingdom ruled by the guy Rhaegar stole her from. If Rhaegar married her, then Jon's real surname is Targaryen, and the revelation of that would be more than enough to indicate he is Rhaegar's son without him also being named Aegon (or even Aemon--I'm with @tedbear on that, as I think it's Aemon's example he'll follow in the end). I think Lyanna would have been more likely to name him Rickard or Brandon if she got a chance to name him at all.
  8. Feast and Dance don't seem to hang together on their own as well as the first three, and I really wish that just about everyone's story did not end on a cliffhanger (especially with 9 years to hang on...), but, that said, a lot of my favorite chapters come from those books. Davos, Brienne, Arya, Theon, and Sansa all have amazing chapters filled with so much incredible backstory, worldbuilding, and laying groundwork for connecting the storylines to each other. Jaime, Dany, Jon, Sam, and Asha as well. And Melisandre, JonCon, and Barristan. Even Cersei, though she is so toxic, I don't like being in her head. I know a lot of folks find the food and travelogue stuff as dull as paint, but I love it. I think GRRM has a real knack for making the ordinary fascinating. It's the gory details in his sex scenes I can do without.
  9. I think the breakfast scene in the Eyrie would be a lot of fun, when the poor septon maester gets smacked with a bowl of oatmeal porridge and Sansa is about at her wits' end, and even Littlefinger seems like Sweetrobin might drive him to actually raise his voice. I can totally see this scene in Norman Rockwell style.
  10. While I think the jealousy of her prowess and intimidation at her size and strength are a thing for sure, I expect the single biggest reason Brienne gets so much grief vs. any of the other female warriors is her personal insecurity. I think dudebros she can dominate in battle are able to sense the awkward and unattractive little girl in her as a weakness they can exploit in a way they could never manage with women who are much more comfortable in their own skins than Brienne.
  11. This. I'd second @Ser Leftwich's suggestion about putting the What Ifs and suchlike into their own sub. Clearly a lot of folks enjoy them, but at least as many do not.
  12. Adding to the above, it's actually LF's trademark to have accomplices with their own motivations, who actually do most of the dirty work. We see that over and over with Littlefinger.
  13. We have it on pretty good authority that Lysa had her own reasons for being happy to agree to poison Jon Arryn. We have no reason to believe that Maester Vyman would have wanted to poison Hoster. LF may well have wanted him dead, but it seems like he's pretty happy to take his revenge by way of long con, and currently, as far as he knows, nearly all the Tullys, Starks, and Arryns are either dead, disinherited, or in his personal guardianship. If revenge was his goal (I don't disagree that he wanted some), I'd say he probably believes he's sitting pretty without having contributed to Hoster's demise.
  14. Also I would go further and suggest, as have many others ( @Ygrain in particular) that the subversion in this case isn't that Jon is the hidden prince, but that the hidden prince won't end up on the Iron Throne, ruling happily ever after. And everyone who rejects the idea of R+L because it's a standard-issue love story seems to overlook the part where they both die horribly and far from each other. If Ashara=Lemore (which I don't think, because Tyrion failing to notice purple eyes is a blatant literary cheat; you can't give someone a feature that striking, make a big deal about it, and then have one of your most observant characters ignore it to hide her identity from the readers), then I suppose there's no reason she even had to pretend to jump from the Tower. As far as I know, we haven't been told why anyone actually believes she jumped, so as long as it doesn't turn out someone saw her do it, she could have snuck out at any time and made her way to wherever she spent the time until YG was handed off to JonCon (this is also problematic; what did she do in the meantime?)
  15. I get the impression that Cersei really really likes the idea that she is irresistible to Jaime, so irresistible that he "has to have" her even in totally inappropriate situations, like when they are in the North or in the Sept viewing their son's corpse, and I think that colors her refusals. Except when she has something she needs from him, like when she wanted him to join the KG (SoS, Jaime II), and again when she wanted him to kill Tyrion (SoS Jaime IX), she seems to make a practice of making him come to her: As L<3R is suspecting, I think when no means no, she's not playing, and Jaime doesn't press the issue.
  16. This was what I was thinking of: I agree with you that Jon is aware and learning more, and Boroq should become important (otherwise, why even have him at the Wall?). And I imagine that the situation Jon is in where the books have left him will probably provide the push towards deliberately skin-changing.
  17. In fairness, Jojen did what he could to teach Bran (remember the bit where Bran was complaining that Jojen was always nagging him to bring things back when he was in Summer?), and he didn't really get any control until Hodor, which happened in a pretty desperate moment, and Arya, as far as we know, didn't start actively skin-changing cats till she was blind, which was probably a big push. I don't think Jon is consciously fighting his ability; I think it just hasn't occurred to him he has any control over it. There's that one passage where he's thinking to himself what a bad warg he is, because he has no idea how to purposely skin-change Ghost. It's possible Jon is subconsciously holding himself back, but I think it's also possible that Varamyr is making assumptions based on his own experience--as Varamyr's skin-changing ability is the ONLY thing that gives him any power of any kind, he probably doesn't have the empathy to get his head around the idea that Jon may just not yet have been in a situation where he really needed to get inside Ghost.
  18. My gut feeling is that she was dosed, too, Tristan and Isolde style, and then fell in love with him for real, so wearing off didn't have much effect. It would explain why Sybell is so nasty to her about it, if the last thing she expected was that Jeyne would actually be loyal to Robb and his memory. I don't think Tywin would play THAT much ball over the baby. I think the deal was aimed at getting Robb to break faith with the Freys, and the non-baby was just cleaning up potential loose ends; if, once the RW was scheduled, and they hadn't already been in cahoots with Tywin from the get go, the only thing the Westerlings had to offer was ensuring Robb fathered no posthumous children of his body, I think the exchange would have been more like: no Starklings or no Westerlings.
  19. He married Walda for her weight in silver and Frey alliance. He already had Big and Little Walder as hostages at the Dreadfort in case Frey wasn't careful with his crossbow quarrels.
  20. Although Jeyne and her parents were specifically given pardons in SoS Jaime IX, I always got the feeling from this conversation that the Sybell was plotting with Tywin from more or less the moment Robb arrived at the Crag based on all the demands she made on Jaime in FFC Jaime VII: That's not a handslap, that's a reward of the make-it-worth-my-while-to-stay-loyal-to-House-Lannister variety. I don't think it was enough to ensure Jeyne produced no wolfpups. The real damage to Robb's cause was marrying Jeyne, and if that ball was rolling by the time Tywin heard about it, I doubt he'd have rewarded them at all. If Sybell dosed Robb and maybe Jeyne, too, it wouldn't surprise me. If you're an opportunistic actual witch and you have an opportunity to ruin relations between the Young Wolf and his allies, do you leave it to hormones, emotional vulnerability, and your virgin daughter, or do you help it along? The motive is there--and if Jeyne ever was anything like her mother's daughter, she isn't anymore (really I think Tywin was wrong about this--Jeyne seems really in love with Robb, and I don't think you'd get that from a love potion).
  21. You could absolutely be right. If so, it seems she did seek him out after that (or maybe he reached out to her). I never got the impression that she didn't already know, more like she knew as well as Leo did, but was a lot more circumspect than him. I kind of think what she was learning in that moment was that Leo was reckless as well as an arrogant ass, not so much about the candle. But it could as easily be that what Leo said got her attention for reasons of her own. And of course Oberyn had also forged some rings at the Citadel once upon a time.
  22. To be fair, Saralla/Alleras is currently studying at the Citadel, and apparently an excellent student--and she's evidently in Marwyn's confidence, or at least in his circle of favored pupils. And he seems to be very deep into whatever there is to know about dragons and Targaryens. I think Marwyn is actually a more likely candidate than Oberyn. I think "the dragon has three heads" in any context other than describing the Targaryen heraldry is probably more esoteric than proverbial.
  23. This is the weakest part of Varys' baby-swap story. I could buy expecting someone to come for Rhaegar's children if the Lannisters got into the city, but how on earth could he have known the Mountain would smash the baby's head in? At that point, even Tywin hadn't realized "what he had" (by which I expect he meant something more like Gregor was too much of a brute to consider that ideally the corpses of assassinated heirs should be easily identifiable, than that he would also rape and murder Elia), and Varys couldn't have even known really that it would be the Mountain who was sent for Aegon.
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