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About ATaleofSalt&Onions

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  1. He's relevant in the sense that if calling Lemore "Lady" is meant to be revealing, JonCon wouldn't do it unless Haldon was already in the know. Which is possible, sure, though I don't know why he'd be told (I don't think JonCon would call her that based on the assumption that Haldon knows she's more than she appears but not knowing anything beyond that). We're literally told in Meera's story about Harrenhal that Elia had a dozen lady companions with her at Harrenhal I'm not saying this necessarily means that Elia and Ashara weren't close, I'm just saying that the text at this point doesn't justify any sort of firm conclusion that she was Elia's closest friend.
  2. Do you think Haldon knows who she is? I also think the use of "Lady" for a septa is interesting, but if she is a noblewoman hiding her identity, JonCon presumably wouldn't refer to her that way to Haldon unless he already knew. I don't think this makes or breaks the theory, but what indication is there that she was Elia's *closest* companion? Barristan just refers to her as one of Elia's companions, with no reference to how close they were, and that's the only time in the books that her position as Elia's lady-in-waiting is referenced. Is there a SSM or something else outside the books that indicates this? Is it your opinion that Brandon was the father of her child? That's my take, and I also think it's plausible that Allyria is their kid, though it's tough to say for sure without more evidence. Allyria could just be a plot device to explain Ned Dayne being Beric Dondarrion's squire, but the implied age gap between her and her siblings (I assume you were mixing up Ashara's relationship to Ned with her official relationship to Allyria when you say "her Aunt Ashara?") is suspicious. One possibility if she isn't Ashara's daughter is that she's a half-sibling, and her mother is Lord Dayne's second wife.
  3. I wouldn't go as far as the other person in terms of second sons being worthless in marriage alliances, but there is definitely reduced value. For a Great House like the Tullys, marrying a daughter to a second son would generally be pretty disappointing (also, in this specific case it would be essentially useless since it would be extremely redundant in light of Brandon and Catelyn's betrothal). I think the other person goes a bit off track in emphasizing that Rickard would be opposed to it, which I think would only be true because of the existing alliance through Brandon and Catelyn. In the case of Garlan, marrying the child of a liege confers benefits even if they are a second son. As for why Willas isn't married yet, some of that could be due to his disability, but it's probably more the Tyrells being more selective with the heir.
  4. Apologies for this being a very delayed reply (haven't checked this board in a while), but I wanted to respond to this because I think a close examination of the evidence for N + A illustrates my point about how flimsy it actually is when subject to scrutiny, despite the multiple references. Let's start off with Cat's recollections about the rumors she heard about Ashara being Jon's mother: So first off, we're talking about a thirdhand rumor whose ultimate source as far as we can tell is a bunch of nameless soldiers. Furthermore, unless Howland Reed started talking, we know that none of these soldiers actually have firsthand knowledge of the events at the ToJ and Starfall that they gossip about. IMO what likely happened is that soldiers started speculating when Ned brought a child home, someone suggested Ashara since Ned went to Starfall shortly before she (apparently) committed suicide and it spread from there. Unless you're clinging to N + A = J against all evidence, we also know that their speculation about her and Ned being Jon's parents is false. I don't think that's very solid evidence that there was actually a thing between Ned and Ashara. The next mention of Ashara is when Cersei throws her name at Ned as possibly being the mother of his bastard. This shows that she's aware of the rumor, but as this comes right after she accuses Ned of fathering Jon on a whore or a Dornish peasant he raped, she clearly has no firm belief on the matter, let alone any actual insight. Again, not exactly credible evidence that there's any truth to the Ned-Ashara rumors. That brings us to Arya's chapter with Ned Dayne and Harwin. Harwin heard a story about Ned and Ashara at Harrenhal growing up, but this doesn't really add much beyond what we learned from Catelyn, that people at Winterfell gossiped about Ned and Ashara. Still nothing from anyone with any sort of credibility or firsthand (or even secondhand) knowledge. Ned Dayne's story that he heard from Allyria might seem to fulfill this at first glance, but not when you consider Allyria's likely age. She's been betrothed to Beric Dondarrion for years but they're still not married. If we assume she's 20 at the start of the story (which is a very conservative estimate, she's probably a few years younger than this) then she would have been about 3 when the Tourney at Harrenhal happened and about 5 when Ashara died. There's very little chance that she's old enough to be a credible direct source on her older sister's love life. In light of all that, I don't think the line in Meera's story is by any means clear confirmation that Ned did have feelings for Ashara. There are a couple of other things that point against it IMO. Ned literally never thinks about Ashara in AGOT, and has no internal or external reaction when Cersei throws her name in his face. He doesn't think about her or anything that could be associated with her when he dreams about Harrenhal. Pretty odd if they supposedly had this great love affair. Barristan in ADWD. Barristan thinks about how Ashara was "dishonored" at Harrenhal (which he seems to think resulted in her getting pregnant), and wonders if she would have turned to him instead of "Stark" had he won the joust and crowned her queen of love and beauty. If "Stark" here is supposed to be Ned and Barristan believes they got together, it's pretty odd given his apparent respect for Ned. Furthermore, Barristan's thoughts elsewhere in ADWD about how young girls prefer "fire" to "mud" seems like a weird attitude for him to have if the one girl he'd ever crushed on in his life had gotten with the quintessential Mud Man despite being much better looking than him by all accounts.
  5. I'm not convinced we know this. The key quote from Meera's story is this: I can see how you can interpret "too shy to leave his bench" as "he wanted to ask Ashara, but was too shy to do it," but I think you can also read it as "Ned was too shy in general to dance and socialize, so his more outgoing older brother asked a pretty lady to dance with his square little brother."
  6. Take it up with the person I replied to who explicitly specified that Catelyn should have been motherly What Catelyn said was obviously fucked up. That said, even as someone that doesn't particularly like her, it's not difficult to notice that a large portion of the fandom (this isn't aimed at you personally tbc) is willing to understand and sympathize with much worse actions by other characters, like actual and attempted child murder, but simultaneously make Cat out to be irredeemably evil for this comment or how she treated Jon in general.
  7. She’s not a bad person for not being motherly to them, even more so in context. Absolutely nobody in their world would expect her to treat Jon and Theon like her own kids.
  8. I think you make some good points in your post, but it's absurd to expect Catelyn to be a mother to Jon and Theon. Jon was (believed to be) her husband's bastard and product of an adulterous affair who was raised in front of her in a manner highly unusual in Westeros, and Theon was essentially a hostage.
  9. I think "easily" is being a bit generous. Even with a tenure of just 4 years per commander, he'd be well into his 60s when he took over assuming he was at least a teenager when it was founded. And that's still not the same as being around before or during the first appearance of the Others (which is what I actually said in that post), which would be (at the latest) the onset of the Long Night rather than its end. Assuming the LN lasted at least around 15 years (seems to make sense with it being described as a generational thing), he'd be in his late 70s at a minimum. You can come up with all sort of speculation about how he could have done X or aged more slowly, etc., my point is just that the text never suggests that he was around before the Others showed up for the first time.
  10. I'm aware of debates about the history of the Wall, but I've generally only seen the Night's King suggested as being around before/during the first appearance of the Others from show watchers who think he's the same as the Night King from the show, and as his stated history doesn't fit with that idea it just seemed a bit odd to me to suggest that it was the conventional wisdom.
  11. This is pretty thin speculation. I made it clear that my conclusion was based on what we are told in the books, and the info we're told about him does not indicate that he's believed to have been around during the Long Night or before the Others showed up. If you make assumptions about how that info is false in specific ways it's hypothetically possible that he could have been, but that's not the narrative presented to us and not what I think most fans assume, which is the context in which my response was made.
  12. I honestly didn't intend for my post to come off as snarky if that's how you read it, I just wasn't sure what you were basing the "not as old as we suspect" thing off of as I haven't found the idea that the Night's King was around at the start of the Long Night to be a common notion in the fandom given his status as the 13th LC and the origin story of the Night's Watch.
  13. Doesn't that seem pretty clear based on what we are told? The Night's Watch was founded at the end of the Long Night, based on what we're told. The NK supposedly was the 13th Lord Commander, so it seems fairly obvious that he's not supposed to be contemporaneous with the Long Night or the first appearance of the Others.
  14. Yandel says that Dayne died alongside his brothers. There’s nothing in the books that suggests that their fate or that of Ned’s companions is a big mystery. Dayne gets talked about more than them because he was a legend in his prime and Ned returned the family sword right afterwards.
  15. I don't care to debate the topic further (nor do you, it seems), but for the record, I found the thread in my comment history. It wasn't one of the swan songs ones.
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