The timeline of the birth of Jon Snow: (The full timeline is at the end if you don’t want to read)
R+L=YG (fA) N+A=J Jon Snow is a true born son of Ned Stark but he is the ONLY true born child of Ned Stark!!!
Your probably wondering how the fuck is Jon Ned's true born child and ONLY TRUE BORN child. In order to tackle this we must take a hard look at Ned's past and primarily the events of the Tourney at Harrenhal/The Tower of Joy/Roberts Rebellion. The Tourney at Harrenhal took place in 281 AC. It is here where the seeds of Roberts Rebellion were planted. The obvious act which most people identify the Tourney at Harrenhal (Which was a coup to Replace Aerys with Rhaegar) with is when Prince Rhaeger crowned Lyanna Stark Queen of Love and Beauty and not his wife Elia.Though this may appear to be the most prominent moment in the entire tourney it is not.
In A Storm of Swords Meera Reed tells Bran about the Knight of the Laughing Tree; Bran interrupts her story claiming its not true nor has he ever heard this story before (he's never hear it before because Ned forbade anyone at Winterfell to speak of Ashara Dayne that includes Old Nan).Meera disregards his comment and continues to tell the story. In the story she uses code names as a means to label each individual (I will not list all the names or go into the full story as I want to stay on track of the events as it relates to Ned) Brandon Stark- The Wild Wolf Ned Stark- The Quiet Wolf (Ghost is described as a quiet wolf in Jons very first chapter):
His uncle was sharp-featured and gaunt as a mountain crag, but there was always a hint of laughter in his blue-grey eyes. He dressed in black, as befitted a man of the Night's Watch. Tonight it was rich black velvet, with high leather boots and a wide belt with a silver buckle. A heavy silver chain was looped round his neck. Benjen watched Ghost with amusement as he ate his onion. "A very quiet wolf," he observed.
- AGOT JON I The importance of the story is when Meera tells Bran that the wild wolf (Brandon stark; Neds older brother) approached Ashara Dayne to dance with Ned. Brandon was already betrothed to Catelyn Tully and was trying to help his younger brother.
"Under Harren's roof he ate and drank with the wolves, and many of their sworn swords besides, barrowdown men and moose and bears and mermen. The dragon prince sang a song so sad it made the wolf maid sniffle, but when her pup brother teased her for crying she poured wine over his head. A black brother spoke, asking the knights to join the Night's Watch. The storm lord drank down the knight of skulls and kisses in a wine-cup war. The crannogman saw a maid with laughing purple eyes dance with a white sword, a red snake, and the lord of griffins, and lastly with the quiet wolf . . . but only after the wild wolfspoke to her on behalf of a brother too shy to leave his bench.
(Much more about the laughing tree and defeating the 3 knights (all loyal to Tywin…)
"Are you certain you never heard this tale before, Bran?" asked Jojen. "Your lord father never told it to you?"
Bran shook his head
-ASOS BAN II
Ned and Ashara dance and hit it off and both fall for each other. Cant really knock Ned he's the 2nd eldest son so everything is promised to Brandon whose betrothed to Catelyn so he may as well get his dick wet with whom he wants plus she's fucking gorgeous.
The Tourney ends 10 days later and everyone goes there separate ways... An unknown time later it turns out that Rhaeger kidnapped Lyanna Stark who is betrothed to Robert Baratheon and shit hits the fan. No one knows exactly where Ned goes after the tourney but it is known that he has to travel north through the mountains of the moon and the Vale as a means to call the banners. Just from that fact its safe to assume Ned went south somewhere with someone...
Ashara did go back to Dragonstone after Harrenhal but she was dismissed a few months later (we hav yet to learn why exactly) Ned could have traveled with her to a certain point then had to split up as she was going with Prince Rhaegar and Princess Elia back to Dragonstone. Ned could have been somewhere near Starfall. Eventually Ashara comes back to Starfall (or Ned) They were with each other for at least a year plus (Idk exactly how the westerosi calendar works but its pretty "earth" like)
Now the next piece of history that we must look at is in 282. Brandon Stark is in Riverrun when the announced date of his marriage between he and Catelyn will be. Little Finger was 15 years old and being fostered at Riverrun and asks for Catelyn Tully's hand. He has a duel with Brandon Stark as a means to win her hand. Little Finger gets absolutely destroyed and almost dies from his wounds.
Note Brandon Stark is in Riverrun when the wedding date is announced and after his duel with Little Finger he returns north to join his fathers wedding party and promises Catelyn he will be back. On their way back to Riverrun news reaches them that Rhaeger has abducted Lyanna and rode straight to Kings Landing instead of going to Riverrun. Most people know what happened at this moment. Brandon enters the Red Keep shouts out for Rhaeger to come out and Die... Instead King Aerys arrests Brandon (for plotting to kill Prince Rhaeger) demands that his father comes to Kings Landing to plead their fealty to house Targaryen and the realm. Once Rickard Stark enters the Red Keep he to is arrested and was burnt alive with wildfyre. Brandon was chained up and strangled to death as a means to save his father. This is extremely important to note because it gives a proper timeline of the events! So just a reminder... 281- Tourney of Harrenhal (Ned meets Ashara) 282- Abduction of Lyanna Stark and deaths of Rickard and Brandon Stark 282-283- Roberts Rebellion After the deaths of Rickard and Brandon, Jon Arryn was told by king Aerys to bring the head of Robert Baratheon (lyanna's betrothed) and Ned! Instead he says no and raises the banners. At this point we know that Ned hearing the news of his father/brother/sister is making his way north to call the banners. Here is where it gets very interesting.
A Dance With Dragons, a Davos Chapter he is "imprisoned" in the Wolfs Den (I don't want to spend to much on the wolfs den at the moment but its basically a prison but has the luxury feel of any great castle giving Davos the thought that it isn't a prison at all but a hide out. As he was being hidden from the Freys and the Lannisters at this point. More on that another time. They were hiding Ashara.)
During the chapter we get the tale of the fishermans daughter:
"At the dawn of Robert's Rebellion. The Mad King had sent to the Eyrie for Stark's head, but Jon Arryn sent him back defiance. Gulltown stayed loyal to the throne, though. To get home and call his banners, Stark had to cross the mountains to the Fingers and find a fisherman to carry him across the Bite. A storm caught them on the way. The fisherman drowned, but his daughter got Stark to the Sisters before the boat went down. They say he left her with a bag of silver and a bastard in her belly. Jon Snow, she named him, after Arryn.
-ADWD DAVOS I
After he lands in White Harbor he goes to Winterfell to raise the northern lords. (It is very possible it could have been a different child of his that doesn't have a very long life- unlikely). We are told immediately Jon's age (14 then 15) The first mention of Robb's age is 15 but not till 23 chapters into the book after the mention of Jon turning 15 making him the eldest and lines up ideally with the timeline! Jon couldn't be the baby born in the Tower of Joy as that takes place in 284 (Will get to that later but if your born in 284 and the current year is 300 you would be 16 not 15.) Ashara was with him on his travels north. She stayed in the Wolfs Den like Davos. The Wolf Den was raised by King Jon Stark.
This is where is gets very tricky... Ned married Ashara at some point after the Tourney at Harrenhal! Most likely in White Harbor as they have Weirwoods and are already hiding Ashara, so rather then bring her to Winterfell, stay in white harbor out of harms way- making it easy for a secret marriage. Ned was lord now he could do what he wanted…
When Tywin finds out Robb marries Jeyne Westering after bedding her...Tywin tells the reader that he is his "Fathers son" perhaps a clue that Robb followed in the footsteps of his old man. This probably is the hardest event to prove definitively because no one knew where Ned was nor his relationship with Ashara (Ned and Ashara likely married in White Harbor as they have weirwoods there and believe in the old gods (this is a must remember). Robb and Jons’ storyline is meant to parallel young Ned in many ways. Being forced to marry is one of the.
"It would have been kinder to leave her with a bastard in her belly," said Tyrion bluntly. The Westerlings stood to lose everything here; their lands, their castle, their very lives. A Lannister always pays his debts.
"Jeyne Westerling is her mother's daughter," said Lord Tywin, "and Robb Stark is his father's son."
-ASOS TYRION III
In A Storm of Swords Arya is captured by the brotherhood without banners and meets a boy named Edric Dayne (the lord of Starfall his aunt and uncle are Ashara/Arthur aka sword of the morning) his nickname is Ned (for Ned Stark).
all of a sudden, she felt very sad. "My father was called Ned too," she said.
"I know. I saw him at the Hand's tourney. I wanted to go up and speak with him, but I couldn't think what to say." Ned shivered beneath his cloak, a sodden length of pale purple. "Were you at the tourney? I saw your sister there. Ser Loras Tyrell gave her a rose."
"My lady?" Ned said at last. "You have a baseborn brother . . . Jon Snow?
“He is my milk brother."
"Brother?" Arya did not understand. "But you're from Dorne. How could you and Jon be blood?"
"Milk brothers. Not blood. My lady mother had no milk when I was little, so Wylla had to nurse me."
Arya was lost. "Who's Wylla?"
"Jon Snow's mother. He never told you? She's served us for years and years. Since before I was born."
"Jon never knew his mother. Not even her name." Arya gave Ned a wary look. "You know her? Truly?" Is he making mock of me? "If you lie I'll punch your face."
"Wylla was my wetnurse," he repeated solemnly. "I swear it on the honor of my House."
"My lady?" Ned looked embarrassed. "I'm Edric Dayne, the . . . the Lord of Starfall."
"My father was Ser Arthur's elder brother. Lady Ashara was my aunt. I never knew her, though. She threw herself into the sea from atop the Palestone Sword before I was born."
"Why would she do that?" said Arya, startled.
Ned looked wary. Maybe he was afraid that she was going to throw something at him. "Your lord father never spoke of her?" he said. "The Lady Ashara Dayne, of Starfall?"
"Before Robert was king. She met your father and his brothers at Harrenhal, during the year of the false spring."
"Oh." Arya did not know what else to say. "Why did she jump in the sea, though?"
"Her heart was broken."
Sansa would have sighed and shed a tear for true love, but Arya just thought it was stupid. She couldn't say that to Ned, though, not about his own aunt. "Did someone break it?"
He hesitated. "Perhaps it's not my place . . ."
Gendry ignored that. "At least your father raised his bastard, not like mine. I don't even know my father's name. Some smelly drunk, I'd wager, like the others my mother dragged home from the alehouse. Whenever she got mad at me, she'd say, 'If your father was here, he'd beat you bloody.' That's all I know of him." He spat. "Well, if he was here now, might be I'd beat him bloody. But he's dead, I figure, and your father's dead too, so what does it matter who he lay with?"
It mattered to Arya, though she could not have said why. Ned was trying to apologize for upsetting her, but she did not want to hear it. She pressed her heels into her horse and left them both. Anguy the Archer was riding a few yards ahead. When she caught up with him, she said, "Dornishmen lie, don't they?"
"They're famous for it." The bowman grinned. "Of course, they say the same of us marchers, so there you are. What's the trouble now? Ned's a good lad . . ."
"He's just a stupid liar." Arya left the trail, leapt a rotten log and splashed across a streambed, ignoring the shouts of the outlaws behind her. They just want to tell me more lies. She thought about trying to get away from them, but there were too many and they knew these lands too well. What was the use of running if they caught you?
It was Harwin who rode up beside her, in the end. "Where do you think you're going, milady? You shouldn't run off. There are wolves in these woods, and worse things."
"Aye, he told me. Lady Ashara Dayne. It's an old tale, that one. I heard it once at Winterfell, when I was no older than you are now." He took hold of her bridle firmly and turned her horse around. "I doubt there's any truth to it. But if there is, what of it? When Ned met this Dornish lady, his brother Brandon was still alive, and it was him betrothed to Lady Catelyn, so there's no stain on your father's honor. There's nought like a tourney to make the blood run hot, so maybe some words were whispered in a tent of a night, who can say? Words or kisses, maybe more, but where's the harm in that? Spring had come, or so they thought, and neither one of them was pledged."
"She killed herself, though," said Arya uncertainly. "Ned says she jumped from a tower into the sea."
"So she did," Harwin admitted, as he led her back, "but that was for grief, I'd wager. She'd lost a brother, the Sword of the Morning." He shook his head. "Let it lie, my lady. They're dead, all of them. Let it lie . . . and please, when we come to Riverrun, say naught of this to your mother."
-ASOS Arya VIII
Think about this for a second Ned must have been truly loved by the members of House Dayne. Even after he "killed" (which I don't believe he did but thats for another day) Arthur Dayne the sword of the morning and is the cause of Ashara's "suicide" (which didn't happen either) that they willingly call the new lord of Starfall after him! And tell him this story? Notice how it ends, with Harwin telling her not to mention any of this Cat. If this story is false why even bother telling your future lord this story? What benefit does it bring? None. Wylla means wife…
Now Arya being Arya doesn't believe him and freaks out because what does she really know she's only a child and Ned forbade anyone of speaking about Ashara (Also the only children of Ned who is described as looking like a Stark/Ned is Jon and Arya the rest of the children have the Tully look). At this point Ned reaches Winterfell leaving Ashara at White Harbor.
In steps Lord Hoster Tully and the worst woman in the entire series Catelyn Tully. As a means to join the fight Hoster Demands Ned to marry Catelyn in his brothers place and Jon to Marry Lysa. In the midst of a rebellion Ned and Co don't exactly have time on their side and he is forced into his marriage with Cat. When these negotiations were taking place it is important to note that this is when the rift between The Blackfish and his older brother and liege lord came to an end… It is noted that after these negotiations Blackfish took his own sigil and left house Tully to give his service to House Arryn and became the knight of the gate in the Vale. Hoster had Southron Ambitions and wanted to improve his house' rank through marriage and politics. Blackfish clearly didn't want to force Ned's hand but there was nothing he can do. Hoster tried to force Blackfish to marry Bethany Redwyne years ago…
Even on his deathbed, Catelyn thought sadly. "He has not wed. You know that, Father. Nor will he ever."
"I told him … commanded him. Marry! I was his lord. He knows. My right, to make his match. A good match. A Redwyne. Old House. Sweet girl, pretty … freckles … Bethany, yes. Poor child. Still waiting. Yes. Still …"
"Bethany Redwyne wed Lord Rowan years ago," Catelyn reminded him. "She has three children by him."
-AGOT Cat XI
Ned marries Cat in the sept at Riverrun in the EYES OF THE SEVEN. This is very important because northerners don't accept the 7 as their gods. They only accept the old gods and marriages in the North must be done in front of a Weirwood... Ned even makes a comment how he has shamed all of his family.
"Wylla. Yes." The king grinned. "She must have been a rare wench if she could make Lord Eddard Stark forget his honor, even for an hour. You never told me what she looked like …"
Ned's mouth tightened in anger. "Nor will I. Leave it be, Robert, for the love you say you bear me. I dishonored myself and I dishonored Catelyn, in the sight of gods and men."
-AGOT Ned II
Why did he shame his family (especially since he doesn't really have any at this point except for Ashara/Benjen/Lyanna/Cat) He married in front of the 7 which isn't accepted in the North and he technically has 2 wives so that could bring on some shame.
After this Prince Rhaeger emerges out of no where and loses the Battle of the Trident and Tywin sacks Kings Landing. This ultimately concluded the rebellion at the end of 283. However their is still the siege at Storms End. Robert orders Ned to break the siege and successfully does so. At this point Ned is searching for Lyanna and happens to go precisely to the Tower of Joy. (Lyanna and Rhaeger most likely hid out in the crypts of Winterfell or in Winterfell somewhere but thats for another day).
281- Tourney at Harrenhal 282- Abduction of Lyanna and deaths of Rickard and Brandon 282-283- Roberts Rebellion 283- Robb Stark born at Riverrun 284- Tower of Joy Somewhere in these years Ned married Ashara (in White Harbor) and possibly had Jon in late 283 or even very early 284 (most likely in mid-late 283 Jon was born) After the siege at Storms End Ned travels towards Dorne and come upon the Tower of Joy. Someone must have told Ned to travel near here (my bet is Varys or Pycelle but no one really knows. Most likely Varys though You just can't let the fact that out of the entire realm Ned by chance stumbles upon the location of his sister. Something doesn't add up...)
Ned and company arrive at the Tower of Joy and see's 3 members of the Kingsguard Ser Oswell Whent Ser Athur Dayne and the Lord Commander Ser Gerold Hightower. First off as readers we have to note that 3 of the best fighters in the entire world are just casually outside of this random tower and not hiding or inside. The 3 of them could have easily defeated Ned and his entire company if they were positioned properly. I don't know why they would just be hanging around outside especially if they're protecting the Princes' pregnant mistress/girlfriend.
Anyway Ned and Co get into a dispute with the Kingsguard and everyone is killed except Howland Reed and ned (I also believe that the Kingsguard members didn't die and are alive and well.) Ned Runs up the stairs to his dying sister and there he see's her in her pool of blood and a new born baby AND a wet nurse! There was another person with Lyanna, this is most likely Wylla. Ned brought her with him to Starfall and most likely to Winterfell. Someone had to give the baby the mothers milk, sure as hell wasn’t going to the Ned...
Edric Dayne says to Arya that Wylla was Jons mother and or wet nurse… Anyway Ned see's his sister and she says to him to promise to watch out for her baby boy. Theres only one major issue…
He is the spitting image of Rhaeger and has full blown Targ Traits. The platinum white blonde hair the purple lilac color eyes. Ned knowing Robert and his current mission to kill every targaryen isn't going to be very thrilled that the women he loves and is betrothed to just gave birth to a replica of Rhaeger.
In a Dance with Dragons Tyrion is shipped off to Pentos via Varys to escape. Tyrion being the witty little drunk that he is discovers a very special someone during his travels through the free cities on his way to Mereen. But before we move on any further Rhaegers son Aegon (via Elia) was born in either 281 or 282 making him either 18 or 19 by the start of A Dance With Dragons... When Tywin sacked Kings Landing Varys claimed he switched baby aegon out with another and that he was shipped off the narrow sea to safety as was being groomed his entire life to be the rightful King but more importantly a good King who rules for his people and not for one self... I think its safe to assume baby Aegon was killed by Tywin and Varys knows that... Anyway Tyrion is on his way to meet Danny and he is on a ship called the Shy Maid with a Sell Sword going by the name of Griff and his son Young Griff. A maester going by Haldon Halfmaester, Another sellsword named Duck a Septa named Lemore (who is most likely Ashara Dayne as Tyrion points out she has stretch marks from a previous birth...but never her eye color…) and a rhyonish couple helping them navigate the waters (Just some more IAF history Young Griff and Egg from the Dunk and Egg tales are the only 2 characters that have a floppy brim straw hat and a knight/guard egg has a dunk so why not give aegon a duck.These 2 characteristics can't be thrown out the window both are wearing the same straw hat using a alias and are accompanied on their journey with a sellsword/knight who eventually become the first of their kingsguard....) The first thing Tyrion lets us know is that the boy is about 15/16 (there is a drastic difference between a 15/16 year old and a 18/19 year old) (15/16 fits ideally with the timeline and the Tower of Joy.
Note that the tower of Joy scenes we get from Ned are during his fever dreams (he was drugged up on milk of the poppy (if anybody has a vile of that let me know). and his dreams don't depict the truth of the situation. George has even said It's a fever dream and that doesn't mean its 100% accurate.
Tyrion who is going by the nickname Hugor Hill or Yollo finally pieces everything out. After having some wine and a few games of Cyvasse it comes to him... Why does a son of a sellsword need 1) a body guard 2) a arms trainer 3) a septa 4) a maester.
Tyrion notices these don't exactly add up along with his looks. We even get from a Jon connington chapter that Aegon is the spitting image of Rhaeger. And says something extremely similar Rhaeagr said to him years ago:
Prince Aegon Targaryen was not near as biddable as the boy Young Griff had been, however. The better part of an hour had passed before he finally turned up in the solar, with Duck at his side. "Lord Connington," he said, "I like your castle."
"Your father's lands are beautiful," he said. His silvery hair was blowing in the wind, and his eyes were a deep purple, darker than this boy's.
Jon Connington stepped out onto the high battlements, the view was just as intoxicating as he remembered: the crag with its wind-carved rocks and jagged spires, the sea below growling and worrying at the foot of the castle like some restless beast, endless leagues of sky and cloud, the wood with its autumnal colors. "Your father's lands are beautiful," Prince Rhaegar had said, standing right where Jon was standing now.
-ADWD The Griffin Reborn
This Young Griff imposter even has dyed his hair blue "in memory" of his Tyroshi mother. The only woman in the world of ice and fire whose associated with the color Blue is Lyanna Stark... Anyway Tyrion being his witty self calls out Young Griff for who he really is and his companions... It turns out that Griff is the exile lord Jon Connington, Young Griff is Aegon (please note that Aegon thinks he's the rightful heir and son of Rhaeger Targaryen and Elia Martell and not Lyanna Stark (He would be 3/4 years older if he was the "real" aegon. After spending sometime with Tyrion he is finally convinced to head to westeros without his aunt and not come to her as a beggar... Back to the tower of joy
Ned promises Lyanna he will take care of her boy. After Lyanna kicks the bucket and Ned has figured out what to do with this baby who is the spitting image of Rhaeger he rides to Starfall with baby aegon... Ashara left White Harbor at some point to come back to Starfall. It is here where we get the most remarkable father like son baby swap!!!
Ned claims to have returned to Starfall to bring back the ancestral sword Dawn of House Dayne. It his here where Ned see's Ashara with baby Jon and Ashara see's baby Aegon with Ned. Ned swaps Aegon for Jon (Remember Tywin saying Robb is his fathers son, perhaps he mentioned something Cersei:
"Honor," she spat. "How dare you play the noble lord with me! What do you take me for? You've a bastard of your own, I've seen him. Who was the mother, I wonder? Some Dornish peasant you raped while her holdfast burned? A whore? Or was it the grieving sister, the Lady Ashara? She threw herself into the sea, I'm told. Why was that? For the brother you slew, or the child you stole? Tell me, my honorable Lord Eddard, how are you any different from Robert, or me, or Jaime?"
"For a start," said Ned, "I do not kill children. You would do well to listen, my lady. I shall say this only once. When the king returns from his hunt, I intend to lay the truth before him. You must be gone by then. You and your children, all three, and not to Casterly Rock. If I were you, I should take ship for the Free Cities, or even farther, to the Summer Isles or the Port of Ibben. As far as the winds blow."
-AGOT NED XII
This swap solves all the troubles Ned would encounter if he took Aegon home. He wouldn't have to worry about hiding a Targaryen from his best friend and future king and he knows Ashara will look after Aegon as they loved each other.
History tells us Ashara threw herself off the roof of the castle and killed herself because the grief was to much for her to bear that her lover killed her brother... Ashara most likely crossed the narrow sea with baby Aegon with limited people knowing. We must note Jon has done the baby swap as well! And Father and son swap a Dayne baby…
Ned returns to winterfell with baby Jon and the rest is history. All of these events fit the timeline and has George's fingerprints all over. A real "fake" aegon is the perfect twist...
Ned marries Ashara at some point (in White harbor while waiting for his northern lords to come to Winterfell) thus making Jon his only true born child and eldest child!
Timeline Recap: 281: Ned meets Ashara at the Tourney at Harrenhal 282- Abduction of Lyanna and deaths of Rickard and Brandon 282-283- Roberts Rebellion 283- Robb Stark born at Riverrun 284- Tower of Joy
283: Jon Arryn calls the banners - Ned goes through the mountains and fingers (roughly 26-31 days about 470-570 miles) - Ned than takes a fishing boat to Sisterton (roughly 15 days about 590-650 miles) - Ned takes a boat to White Harbor (roughly 4 days about 420 miles) - Ned rides or takes boat upriver to Winterfell (roughly 10 days 630 miles) (He leaves Ashara in White Harbor. Most likely being hidden in the Wolfs Den) - Ned waits for his banner men to arrive at least 41 days (It is at this time Ned probably made a trip back to White Harbor to spend time with Ashara while he waits for his banner men. They do the tango a few times and she becomes pregnant with Jon.) - Ned and Co march south to the crossing to meet Jon Arryn (roughly 83 days about 16650 miles) - Ned Marches to Riverrun (about 24 days 470 miles) - Ned rides to Stoney Sept (Battle of the Bells) to save Robert (about 8 days roughly 280 miles) - Ned marches back to Riverrun to Marry Cat (about 10-14 days roughly 280 miles) - Battle of the Trident 130 days later - Dany is conceived prior to the sack of Kings Landing -Sack of KL about 15 days later - Jon is born (within a month of Dany's conception)