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  1. No. Her identity is not yet ready to be revealed. Not even by JonCon, let alone GRRM. There is no reason or requirement that he think of her or call her Lady Ashara or Lady Dayne. Sorry, facts are facts, and saying 'come on' doesn't change them The misinformation gets stronger as desperation sets in. There is no description at all beyond 'maid' and 'laughing purple eyes. Saying she is described is beautiful in that story is an outright lie. Never mind that the entire story is distinctly romanticised and simplified (individuals are reduced to a single symbollic descriptor) rather than being specific in any descriptive way. Sure he does. Her identity must be hidden. No, t does not suggest any such thing. Her identity has not yet been, is not yet ready to be, revealed. He is not thinking of her 'outside her alias', he is merely revealing (or adding) status to her alias. First, because of the way she can argue with him about the big picture with no comeback. Second, because he gives her status as a Lady even in his own mind (once that is safer to do), which indicates he knows enough of her to believe she truly has that status. I think its a fatally flawed and misleading point, and that needed pointing out. Gilly is giving up her child - and fair enough, thats a hard thing to put your child at risk to save another, even if the other is of higher status. But Elia isn't 'giving up her child'. She's saving her child - the gates have been opened, she's likely to have a more sane understanding of the consequences of that than the Mad King did. She, and both her children are already at great risk, if not dead already. As to the daughter nearby, thats also not a reasonable factor. Its as likely as not (or more, IMO) that Rhaenys had run away in fear (found hiding beneath her father's bed (in the next floor up IIRC)) and Elia could't control what happened to her. Varys may even have had a double for Rhaenys too (less likely IMO, for several reasons, but still possible). Because the enemy are not at the gates, they are already within them. No. Pay attention. Doubles for royal children were relatively common. Such a double, when needed, needs to have been prepared months or years in advance. They need to not just look similar but also be able to pull off basic courtesies and interactions at the very least. Given the rarity in Westero of matching Aegon's hair colour, its not at all unreasonable that Varys found the Pisswater prince months before the siege and would have had the child raised and trained for a decade or more in case there was need for any reason. The Pisswater Prince was almost certainly not acquired specifically for a baby swap during the Sack, but as a general tool to have around for any requirement necessary in the next decade or two. This is additional met-story reasoning, agreed. I don't know exactly how (or if) it will play out but Lemore=Ashara certainly would enable GRRM to have a straight 'betrayal for love' between Barristan and Dany. There are arguments that can be made, but I'm not certain we've seen that particular betrayal yet. Barristan switching to Aegon for the love of Ashara would be undeniably a betrayal for love. Not true at all. The youthful generations may use the language that way, but thats not how it has been used for... maybe centuries? GRRM knows his language. And ASoIaF is written deliberately using older styles and usages to fit with its cultural times. "Handsome" is exactly how attractive 'older' women have long been described. They no longer have youthful 'prettiness', they have lost the full bloom of outright beauty (modern women can retain that much longer due to cosmetics, surgery and much healthier but also much less physically stressful lifestyles), but they are still clearly very attractive. Anyhoo... As usual, we seem to have gotten well off topic. Ashara=Lemore always seems to do this, IMO because quite a lot of readers have a very large amount of disinformation in their heads and it gives them strong convictions which are easier to argue than checking facts and rethinking ideas. To try to being us back to a semblance of topic... Lemore's actual identity, though interesting of itself and relevant to the truth of fAegon's identity, is not actually critical. fAegon can be real with our without Lemore as Ashara, and he can be false with or without Lemore as Ashara. All 4 options are plausibly in play, though different readers will assess the data in different ways to come to different conclusions.
  2. Common mistake, but no, actually. She gets a romanticised gossip description from Cat, who never met her but heard gossip that she was 'tall and fair, with haunting violet eyes'. Fair is attractive, not gorgeous (and we find out in ADwD that its not referring to hair colour). Barristan, who was infatuated, describes her as having long dark hair tumbling about her shoulders and haunting purple eyes. And in his eyes Elia compares to her as a kitchen drab, but then Elia was sickly (though not unattractive), married, socially too high for him, and not Barristan's crush. Barristan's opinion has some weight as an eye witness, but its also coloured by time and feelings. Actually, they are. More common perhaps, amongst a specific racial group and bloodline, but as we see with Aegon, and with Gerold Dayne, not to mention John the Fiddler, GRRM's purple eyes also often seem to be other colours and its often only close study, or known associations that clarify them as some shade of purple. We also see Egg able to stay largely anonymous despite his distinctively purple eyes, because people aren't expecting a hedge knight's squire to be a Targaryen and don't pay close attention. Its not obvious, because everyone in world 'knows' Valyrians have purple eyes so see what they expect very often, but its clear that GRRM's purple eyes often work much like real world purple eyes in being distinctive at times, and indistinct at others. Yes, as a courtier at court in her late teens, she had striking eyes. As a drab older religieuse tutor trying not to be recognised, not necessarily so. No matter how much one chooses to deny realty, the facts are there through the books. Ashara had long dark hair 'tumbling about her shoulders' - per Barristan's memories. 'Dark' in such a context covers many shades of brown to black. Lemore has dark brown hair flowing about her shoulders (at least when she first emerges in the morning) - per Tyrion's live observations. Would he? You don't think purple eyes would have given his game away entirely? You don't think its odd that she is one of very few significant characters (and with an explicit mystery around her identity) that we don't get her eye colour? Don't get me wrong, I'm not saying Ashara wasn't a very attractive woman - look at the calibre of men she pulled when dancing! But her descriptions are romanticised, rather than realistic. Its a mistake to over emphasise that it. And Septa Lemore certainly seems to have that same sort of 'pull' toward men. And 38-42ish not trying, is not the same as 17-18ish trying very hard. From the shoulders down, yes. We have no idea whether Lemore has a crooked nose, mismatched eyes, scarred face etc. I mean, its very unlikely she has any obvious distinctively unattractive features, but literally the only information we have on her above the shoulders is hair colour. Does she have a long aquiline nose? Or a short pert one? Does she have strong distinctive brows or thin sparse ones? Does she have full shapely lips or mobile, expressive lips. Dark eyes, or light? High cheekbones or normal? We don;t know. Tyrion's "inspection" didn;t give us any information about her looks - it was all about his feelings, not her. The truth is that we have no description of her personal features except she's generally hot naked and has stretch marks (and has dark brown hair, but thats from a different passage). Its an 'inspection' specifically designed to not give us much in the way of identifying information! I wonder why that is? You can say it as often as you like, but the data says otherwise. Its no big deal. We'll find out eventually (I can't imagine GRRM not clarifying a mystery he makes explicit and that is important to the storyline - assuming he finishes that is). But so far your arguments simply don't fit the data. The only reason I explain this is so that readers here are not fooled by misinformation and so feel duped later.
  3. Inspected her? You mean ogled her. He certainly wasn't paying attention to her eyes. What did he say about her face again? Oh, nothing. Flowing hair, breasts, belly, legs, skin... No eyes, nose, mouth, chin, cheekbones, anything. In a wider point, purple eyes often don't look very purple without makeup or accessories to 'bring out' the colour. This is easily seen both in our world, where the most famously purple eyed woman ever, Elizabeth Taylor, often appeared to have grey or blue eyes when not wearing purple makeup or accessories that enhanced he purple colour, and in Westeros where Young Griff's purple eyes are disguised as blue by dying his hair blue. What a beautiful courtier in her late teens, from the highest strands of society, is described as at the biggest party of her life 20+ years ago, bears only some small resemblance to what that same woman might be described as in her late thirties or early forties when trying not to be noticeable. What can be shown? "Here is a baby (looks like Aegon). It is Aegon, I rescued him, we'll raise him to be a great king and put him on the throne when he's ready." 20odd year old JonCon, warrior, Lord, Hand of the King, is unlikely to truly be able to tell Aegon from another baby specifically chosen for its similar looks. It may well have been months, or years, since he'd seen the babe as well. Absent JonCon convincing himself, I don't think any 'show' or any 'tell' from Varys would work. Ashara OTOH is noble, close (possibly very close) to the child's mother and from an impeccably honourable and loyal family. If she claimed to have brought the child over from Westeros to Essos shortly after the rebellion, I think he'd be much much more inclined to accept that anything from Varys (and even more influenced by, or less guarded against, his own needs as well). Thanks. I drop in occasionally, more to check up on certain old friends, but it rarely seems worth posting. Disagreement is fine. The case is not open and shut, we can agree and disagree on where judgement lies. I do hate incompetent arguments (from others in this case) though.
  4. I'm not sure Varys would be able to convinceJonCon of much. JonCon wasn't, in his youth, the type to put a lot of stock in the words of a grovelling, lowborn, foreign, eunuch, spy. Ashara Dayne though, Companion of Elia, sister to Arthur Dayne... If not Ashara Dayne, this is the only reasonable answer I've seen as to why JonCon might believe Varys. I don't see any necessity for that. I think its more likely, though not certain, that her baby, if not actually stillborn, is Allyria Dayne, falsely claimed by the family as the daughter of Ashara's mother, rather than an illegitimate child born of disgrace. Better for the family, better for the child. Indeed. It only serves as a motivation for Ashara, and even then, counter's her family's emphasis on honour, relationships with Elia and Rhaegar and loyalty to the Targaryens. Oh wait... do you mean her baby was killed in KL and fAegon is Aegon? I thought you meant her baby was fAegon. If fAegon is Aegon, then IMO Ashara has plenty of motivation to put him on the throne already from family connection, honour, loyalty and personal ties to both his mother and father. Her child's part is completely unnecessary. I find this an extremely poor argument. Elia didn't 'give up' her son, she protected him. If all went well, then its only a temporary swap, if all goes badly she potentially saves her son's life. Gilly's situation is utterly different. Not only is the threat not even apparent to her, but its also less certain, and the swap is guaranteed to be long term. Plus its her child that is being put into danger not taken away from danger. It is in fact a reverse situation! Why would she not? He's right there in KL with her, has nothing outside KL, if all goes well its only a temporary situation, and if the worst happens she saves her son's life. No, you are to believe that a smart counselor prepares for many eventualities, and that, like we saw with Myrcella, 'doubles' are sometimes used for royal children. Varys almost certainly prepared the Pisswater Prince long before any siege, as a convenient double for all sorts of possibilities. At worst, Varys uses the secret passages to move from Aerys' side, once the order is given to open the gates to the Tywin, to grab the pisswater double and swap with Aegon. Maybe there was also a double for Rhaenys (or maybe she wasn't as important as not-the-heir) but she'd disappeared (to hide in her father's chambers) and Elia didn't have her. We don't know virtually any detail. Varys does appear noticeably not apparent in the throne room accounts of Jaime and Ned though. Its not stretching anything to make entirely plausible and entirely reasonable scenarios that fit all available data and have Varys doing a late switch. Yes, Tyrion has doubts. Tyrion is not omniscient and is feeling his way through things with far less data than we have. He also makes mistakes and changes his mind at different times. Nice. There are certainly arguments both ways.
  5. Very few things that remain 'open' in the books have been settled. Frankly, even things that have been 'settled' in the books, remain unsettled amongst fan, most of whom will do any amount of mental gymnastics to twist their preferred narrative to fit GRRM's written word. And then then often accuse him of being a bad author to boot. Sorry, semi sardonic rant over, nearly. Most of the competent veterans don't hang around much here any more I'm afraid. No new material, and you have to wade through so much garbage nowadays to find any gems, its just not worth the time. I think you've done pretty well, but a few pointers for you to think about. They may or may not be right, we won't know until GRRM finishes, if he does. Also, this is in the nature of a flying visit, so I don't have time to check/research everything the way I'd prefer, so I'm relying on memory alone for this, sorry But you seem ore than capable of checking up the relevant facts and figuring out anythi I get factually wrong. And how did Varys get him to Illyrio, and how did llyrio handle a one year old child and raise him til 6-7+? I suspect another party is connected. A Targaryen loyalist, closely connected to Rhaegar and Elia, who 'committed suicide' (but no body found) at just about the right time to secretly (by Varys' design probably) take young Aegon from Westeros to Essos. Who was about the right age and the right look to pass as his mother, and the right upbringing and background to later act as a tutor and prepare him to be a competent ruler of a 'foreign' (even if it is home) land. Also, remarkably attractive to men, rumoured to have had a child, dark haired and raised literally beside the sea (more likely than is common to be a swimmer. Oh, and fAegon's 'tutor' is referred to by Jon Connington as a "Lady" and senior enough in the conspiracy to argue with Jon Con about their plans and actions - more than once, with no comeback. She also explicitly has her own secrets (and may be recognisable without some sort of disguise) which Tyrion deliberately ignores once, then gets lost from the party almost immediately after deciding that there was more to her than he thought. More than that, probably. The clothes Tyrion acquired at Illyrio's seemed to be made for a 'small boy' but they'd still need to be large enough for Tyrion to physically fit his torso into. Which suggests maybe 10-12, rather than 5-6. And there is no reason Griff needed to be 'on the road' with YG immediately after leaving the GC (actually, he had to spend some time at least establishing a drinking-to-death likelihood, but that needn't be that long to be fair). Check out when Tyrion meets Jon for the first time (way back in AGoT Tyrion II - yes, I did some of the research to check, couldn't help myself. If you don't already know asearchoficeandfire.com is your very very good friend. Yes, GRRM is that good. Literally the only person who need know, is Varys. At the Pisswater Prince (theoretical swap) time, Varys is the only person involved and can choose as he likes. Literally everyone else involved assumes thereafter from his word. Which leaves the final conclusion that none of us can tell unless GRRM decides to make it clear and explicit (and even then you can be sure there will be arguers!) I lean fairly strongly towards the Varys -> Kevan = truth side though. I just acknowledge that I could be wrong here - its a judgement call, rather than an area of fact. No. Thats just stupidly convoluted, a product of incompetent idiots so welded to their pet theories they twist anything and everything to make shit up. GRRM is a much much better writer than that. And its clear from JonCon's POVs that he's a believer. Period. There is no reason to believe they've been on the Rhoyne the whole time - or even large sections of time. Tthey may have, but no necessity. I would guess there have been periods on the Rhoyne - part of YG's wider education and periods in other safe places - also part of YG's education. Overall, I agree largely with your conclusion, but one has to allow room for alternates. One of GRRM's skills is that he can have balls in the air and there are multiple places they could plausibly land until they actually do. IMO its one of his weaknesses too - a possible/partial cause for his need for many rewrites and adjustments in the writing process - he keeps not just his actual narrative alive and coherent, but also many many alternative narratives also still alive and coherent, or at least close enough to be almost coherent enough to give every theorist an opening...
  6. This is a circular argument based on the assumption that Jon was the baby born in the "bed of blood" at the Tower of Joy No it isn't. Quite the opposite. Its not relying on BoBat ToJ to ask what else is there! Its a question. What does HR know about that means he can't be a POV character. The only thing that has any importance that he has been involved with is Harrenhal Tourney (and we've heard his side of that) and ToJ. What else is there?
  7. Are you suggesting that there is another way to get a bastard than by siring it on a girl? There is no such story. No one anywhere suggests Jon was sired at Harrenhal Tourney. He's much to young for that and Cat knows it. Now some people within story suggest that Ned may have had a relationship with Ashara Dayne at Tourney, but thats a whole different thing from siring Jon way back then. When Cat brought Robb to WInterfell, Jon was already there and Robb was considered the elder by all. No one questions this. Not even Cat. Therefore, Jon must have been sired after Ned left Cat's marriage bed where he had just sired Robb. Thats at least 6 months, probably a year or more after Harrenhal. But that bastard could not have been Jon. Baby Jon at Winterfell was young enough for Robb to plausibly be older. And so Cat thinks. Robb is older, therefore it is Cat's belief that Jon was sired after Ned left her bed. Don't forget, the woman thinking these things is the Cat of 14-15 years later. She's already processed some knowledge (the comparative ages of Jon and Robb) into her consciousness and her thoughts and memories of things outside her personal experience are partially defined by this knowledge. I'm not dismissing it at all. I'm saying it doesn't imply what you claimed it did. It fits in with literally anything she heard about Ned having a new bastard.
  8. Of course not. They both know exactly what girl Robert is talking about. No, it does not. Just because one person asking a question makes an assumption does not obligate the other person to correct that assumption, or even address it at all. If you ask me "What's the capital of Italy? You know, the one with all the canals and stuff?" I may answer "The capital of Italy is Rome" and thats the precise correct answer to the question you asked. I also may answer "Rome. You are thinking of Venice, thats not Italy's capital" but that my personal choice to provide you bonus information and correct your faulty assumptions. I don't have to do that. Simply wrong, as demonstrated in the Rome/Venice example above. No, the answer provides the exact requirement of the question., no more, no less. And its flat, cool and precise, which is exactly how one speaks if your King is meandering on a topic that you don't want to talk about and you are trying to shut him down without being disrespectful. And exactly how Ned is. Replace "the capital of Italy' with "her name" and you have Ned's precise answer (and Robert's actual question+extra). It is not meaningless if it is the correct name for the girl Robert is thinking of - regardless of her status. He's already been specific enough -"that one time". That completely narrows it down already. Robert is adding qualifiers because he's meandering all over the conversation, not because he needs to narrow things down for Ned. This is clearly indicated by trying to answer his own question multiple times and even getting sidetracked into 'one of mine' with 'sweet big eyes you could drown in'. This isn't Robert asking direct questions in order to get information. This is Robert meandering through a casual conversation with his friend, trying to remember old fun times from their past. The only thing we know Ned told Robert was her name. Its right there in black and white. Robert is talking about one specific woman right from the start - Ned's 'one time'. Robert meanders all over the question of her name, repeatedly coming up with wrong names from his memory, and Ned only answers when Robert finishes his little run down memory lane and actually gives Ned space to answer And yet, his response is one answer. No negative or affirmative. So its clearly not an answer to all the questions (heck, Robert answered most of them himself). That is an assumption itself. The only thing we know Ned provided Robert before was the name. Agreed. Thats part of my argument. This is your assumption only and I've shown an entirely reasonable way that Robert can come out of that convo without Ned telling him Wylla was the mother. If Robert goes into that conversation with prior 'knowledge' exactly as he went into the later conversation with prior knowledge, then he can come out of that conversation believing all sorts of things without Ned's input. What Ned can and can't get out of that conversation without telling is entirely dependent on what Robert says to him. What we know, is that Ned gave the name Wylla. And separately that Wylla was Jon's wetnurse that is believed by some people to be Jon's mother. An example: (do not try to pretend I'm saying this is how it actually went!) Robert: "I hear you got a bastard on some serving woman and you've got her wetnursing the boy. Well, come on Ned, spill. Details man, details. Is she hot? she must be hot. She must be so so hot to make Ned Stark forget his honour! Big eyes? Titties to die for? Come on man!" Ned: Her name is Wylla. And I don't want to talk about it. ... Robert, I found Lyanna. She's dead, she died in my arms. A fever. I'm sorry." Why would Robert ignore information from any other source?
  9. That you can take a joke that was not used as an argument and turn it into a personal insult is enough to show the value of your discourse. She learned that. I'm not sure that you can call that an actual rumour that she heard. It is implicit in any news that Ned has a bastard, since he didn't have one when he married her and then left on campaign.
  10. Indeed. The rest is Robert adding qualifiers which is Robert adding information about his question, not Ned providing information. Ned simply ignores the extra information. He knows who Robert is talking about. Whether Robert's extras are accurate or not, the answer is still the same. Her name is Wylla. If the answer is the same regardless of the accuracy or inaccuracy of the additional information, then clearly Ned has not addressed that additional information in his answer. You don't get to expand Ned's answer out to make it apply to the question you want. If we add words to Ned's answer then yes, those words can significantly change the meaning. But his answer is simply "her name was Wylla". There was no "oh that common girl", there was no "she was", there was no "yes, her name was Wylla. Just "her name was Wylla". So what question does that answer? A. Not B. If you want B to be answered then Ned could say something like "Yes, her name was Wylla". That changes it completely. He's added an affirmation that doesn't bear relevance on the main question, so must be related to the additional information Robert provided. But thats not what we see.
  11. Agreed Why? We know Ned gets angry (icy or cool) and shuts down these conversations about Jon's mother (and we can well imagine why if R+L=J, thats a very dangerous secret to have people speculating around). Including with Robert. If he told Robert all that before, why would he be icy and shut down about it now? Why tell a story to Robert once, and refuse to tell it again? Its just not a consistent response. He didn't tell Catelyn that. The only thing he told Catelyn was that "Jon is my blood and thats all you need to know", and shut down the conversation in an icy rage. Poor Cat still wonders who Jon's mother was. So no, he doesn't have an 'official story' it appears. Right. The whole 'report from Varys' thing is merely me finding a reasonable explanation how Robert heard stuff from 'someone else' before he spoke with Ned. And, if you read the conversation we saw closely, if you actually apply the answer to the question(s), you see that Ned didn't 'confirm' anything to Robert except that the name of the woman Robert is thinking of is Wylla. Robert can come away thinking Ned did, and thats fine. Ned has closed the conversation without actually saying anything. The rest is on Robert's own back. Heck, for fun, I can even imagine Ned outright denying to Robert that he fucked a common girl and turned her into a wetnurse for her own baby. All Robert does is laugh uproariously, clap Ned on the back saying "sure thing pal whatever you say", and come away more convinced than ever that thats exactly that Ned did. A really subtle Ned would have a sly smile on his face while denying it. Ned's not actually that subtle though IMO, and I don't think Robert would need a sly smile to project his own actions on Ned with a little "Ned's a good guy, he'd look after the woman and baby properly" addition and be convinced he's right.
  12. Thats the exact opposite of the truth. To read it properly (your 'any other way') you must connect the answer to the question. What is the answer? "Her name is Wylla?" What is the question? A: "What was her name ... you know the one I mean?" or B: "that common girl of yours, you know the one I mean, (is she) your bastard's mother?"
  13. Others are. Ned told him Wylla's name once. Thats all we know. Well, that and that he never said what she looked like. Others assume that because Ned told Robert her name, therefore Ned is the source of all Robert's information on the subject and told Robert more than that. I point out that there is no reason that first conversation couldn't have looked like the second - Robert coming in with predetermined assumptions (the likely report being a merely an explanation as to how Robert could get reasonably details that weren't from Ned) and Ned saying as little as possible (her name) and avoiding the subject. Clearly he was successful in at least not telling Robert what she looked like. And you know that thats what Robert would have wanted more than anything... except perhaps salacious details.
  14. In no way do I ignore that. In fact I assume its a significant likelihood, sort of (the only reason not is that they were 'reuniting over Lyanna's death' and so the tone could be considerably different). I just don't see any reason to believe he 'gave' more than we are shown he gave - exactly as he didn't in the conversation we see. That is in fact one of the impetus', as you say. Given what we see of Ned interacting with Robert on this subject, how does it make sense that the previous conversation went vastly differently? Why would Ned tell more then, yet remain light lipped now? Sure. He doesn't get to be all icy rage and commanding with Robert, like he did with Cat. He has to be cool and deflective. Yet the result is the same, essentially. He actually gave more 'new' information to Cat than he did to Robert. At least she got 'he is my blood'! With Robert he was cool and respectful, but still shut the conversation down without saying any more than Robert already 'knew'. So the fact remains. What we see is that he told Robert only one thing, (which Robert already knew) and made no other answer. I see no reason why we should assume, without any evidence at all*, that the previous conversation with Robert was so very different the one we saw, and unlike both the ones we saw he gave Robert more information, true or false. *Now you assume that Robert being in possession of information is evidence that Ned told him that information. But that is simply not the case. There are definitely other ways Robert could have that information. Its the same (mostly) information that Edric Dayne thinks is common knowledge. And given the situation at the time; FACT 1 - Ned having ridden south in a huff post-argument with Robert, FACT 2 - Robert being the character he is, Ned forgive and forget, keen to have his friends (and everyone else) love him FACT 3 - Ned having 'disappeared' after Storms End instead of reuniting with Robert FACT 4 - Varys is Master of Whispers and his job is to keep his new King apprised of what is happening around the kingdom FACT 5 - Ned 'reappearing' at Starfall (that s the next known place he was at after disappearing from Storms End) Assumption 1 - Wylla being Jon's other was 'no secret' at Starfall (at least, Edric assumes Jon knew and would have told Arya, so Edric doesn't think this is a secret in any way) Assumption 2 - a report about Ned (and Wylla and Jon) turning up at Starfall would reach the Master of Whispers before Ned got back to Kings Landing ...I think its eminently reasonable that Robert can have already 'known' some stuff before he saw Ned again. And thus there is no reason to assume the first conversation was significantly different from the second conversation. I think both my assumptions are pretty fair reasonable ones. More so than your assumption Ned told Robert, which goes against everything we see. Since the 'evidence' fits both ways, then it doesn't point to one over the other, so you can't claim it as 'evidence' Robert must have been told details by Ned. Again, its a consistency and characterisation thing. If Ned has 'a story' that he told Robert, then it makes much more sense to tell that story when the subject comes up. No need to get angry and mysterious with Cat (who doesn't consider it shameful to get a bastard while on campaign) and leave her forever wondering, leaving that little kernel of uncertainty slowly poisoning their relationship. No need to get defensive and shut down even Robert. Better and more convincing to simply brush off casual question's like Robert's with a casual consistent answer. However, if Ned doesn't have a story, if he just shuts down as best he can every time, giving safe answers to Robert's 'wrong' questions that allow Robert to think the safe 'wrong' thing without correction, then everything we see, is absolutely consistent.
  15. Its not straitforward. Its actually counter to the literal black and white. I guess there are different meanings that "handwaving away evidence" is used for. I was using at 'ignoring evidence without examining it or pretending it needs examining'. I guess you seem to be using it as doing nothing effective. That is 'handwaving', with clearly explained reasons. Ie not ignoring it entirely, but judging it flawed. My opinion on that will reverse if, say, we get a Hightower POV who also knows about Gerold's death, thus indicating that someone who was there has talked. In the meantime, unlike GRRM's words, this one single piece of data is something the a real-world writer would definitely know, but an in-world writer (Maester) does not, as far as we know, have any possibility of learning about. Given its not from GRRM, not referenced by any character outside Ned's head (HR not being a talkative chappie) and a single line in a book area not relevant to the ToJ fight, I think its reasonable that it may be a real-world writer's error (not in its being, but that the maester could include it). I may be wrong. We'll see. DIdn't say you did. That was another poster. Is it a assumption that Ned disappeared from Storms End? Maybe I guess I think its a lot less an assumption that Ned, having stormed off south Mad at Robert, sent Robert a raven saying where he was going. (Not that you claim he did, just pointing out that this is a pretty straitforward and widely held assumption, as assumptions go). Is it an assumption that Ned and Robert were best friends? Is it an assumption that Robert gets mad quickly and gets un-mad just as quickly and wants to 'make up'. is it an assumption that Varys was Robert's Master of Whispers? Is it an assumption that Varys was previously Aerys' Master of Whispers? Is it an assumption that post-rebelliion Ned was one of the most important men in Westeros? Well, at least you admitted your 'baseline' is an assumption. One without evidence in fact. Yes. Thats not the point. You are claiming that a) it is a new question (ie the original was what what was the girls name, the second if she was Jon's mother), and b) Ned answers it. I am claiming that its not a new question, its a statement by Robert pertaining to his old question - a restatement of the original question with further clarification. In order to show this point, just separate the two. Take the second in isolation. "You know the one I mean, your bastard's mother". Is there a question there? No there isn't. Just a question mark at the end of a statement. This shows that its a reference and continuation of the earlier question. Its not a second question. Its one question, with one answer. That question has a lot of additional data placed on it be Robert, but Ned's answer is only pertinent to the original question and does not in any way address the statements Robert makes. Its very simple. Just read Ned's answer. "Her name was Wylla". Apply that to the question(s). Does this answer, in any way, address the status of Wylla? No it does not. Just her name. You did exclude the most significant thing of all. Ned's replay. Lets add that in and have another look shall we? How does "Her name was Wylla" address anything but 'what was her name?'. It does not. "Your bastard's mother?" would be addressed by some sort of affirmative Ned give none. Just the name. If Robert changed it and said "What was the name of your bastard's mother, then that question would be answered by Ned supplying him with a name. But that's not how the conversation went. Rbert asked for a name, Robert gave qualifiers, Ned gave exactly what Robert asked for - the name of the one Robert means. There is no indication Ned told Robert that either. You are making just as much an assumption as I am. Ned told Robert Wylla's name once before. Everything else is an assumption on your part too.
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