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Ser Leftwich

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About Ser Leftwich

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    Baker of Humble Frey pies!
  • Birthday December 27

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  1. This is the only relevant part of any debate about claims.
  2. What do we know about the characteristics/motivations of Howland Reed? What does he know, about whom? What are Howland's goals? Whom would he approach? Why would he approach them? Who is Howland loyal to? Frankly, what is "reasonable" is meaningless, unless all of the above is answered in detail, as well as... Is Aegon legitimate? Is Jon? Does Howland know if one or both is legitimate? (BTW, 'Legitimacy' means nothing.) Why would Howland have waited to seek out Aegon or Dany to tell them that they have a "brother/nephew" lurking? Why not go before now? Why not go to anyone else at any point before now?
  3. All Pates, always. Pate the Plowman Pate the Woodcock Pate of the Blue Fork Pate of Fairmarket Pate of Lancewood Pate of Longleaf Pate of Mory Pate of Shermer's Grove Old Pate (This is not a topic, it is nonsense, please try to talk about the books (there should be a separate section of the forum for this).)
  4. The actions of leaders ignoring or acting on "Winter is Coming" is itself a choice within the story, and adheres to the original premise of this thread. It is the choice that matters, not the specific reasons that created the need to make a choice. "Stupidity" is relative to what knowledge/information that one has, balanced against responsibility. Why did Tyrion do what he did at point A? Why did Jon do what he did at point B? When Tyrion ignores the rotted hand in the jar, he is weighing 'the realm' vs. 'the threat of the jar' (and the dubious emissary), based on what he knows and believes at the time. We readers know considerably more than any character in the book (except maybe Bloodraven). When Jon lets in the Wildings, he makes the choice about "Winter is Coming" based on different information than what Tyrion had when he made his decision. Both decisions are based on 'duty/love/honor/obligations,' to realm/humanity/dynasty, based on what they each knew and believed at the time when they made the decisions. Judging characters (and/or any given action by them) summarily is exactly what we are not supposed to do as readers. We have vastly more knowledge than any character making any given decision at a given time. (see the different way that readers viewed them after having the POV of Jaime, Cersei, Brienne, Quentyn, etc.) Even without having the POV of the Hound, we can empathize with him after learning his motivations (fear of fire, realization of the futility of vows, etc.), in that is is not just a murderer, but a damaged person. Literally no one in the books knows what happened in the Prologue of AGoT, only the readers do. Should we judge all the characters and all of their actions as 'stupid' because they are not acting with that in mind, even though we know there to be a 'threat'? No, that would be, frankly, idiotic to do. Why did the Others make the choice to do what they did? We don't know the motivations behind the actions of the Others, so it seems harsh to qualify it as a 'threat to humanity.' (I find the vague, existential threat of the Others kind boring, since we have no motivation.)
  5. That is a good quote. It also shifts from the "Heroic Sacrifice" trope, to the slightly less used trope of "what if we sacrifice someone else for the greater good." There are numerous examples of the possibility of sacrificing a child or an innocent, for the 'greater good'. That being said, how do we know who Stannis was seeing anything to do with Joff? Should Ned have killed Jon? Should Jaime have killed Bran? Should Ned have killed Cersei's children? Should Stannis have killed Joffrey? Should Rickard Karstark murder prisoners for vengeance? There are many more not listed, they range from the mundane to the world-altering and from certain points of view, all of these were the correct thing to do at the time. There in lies my point, it won't necessarily be the literal 'end of the world' if it comes down to Dany vs. Jon over sacrificing their child, because it is the end of the world for anyone in the books over similar decisions. The poetic justice comes later. Any specific examples in text pertaining to Dany that could lead to this course of the narrative? (I can't think of any off-hand. They aren't as blatant as Jon's various calls to duty/love/'right action' from: Ned's speech; Benjen's; Aemon's; Half-Hand's ; LC Mormont's; Samwell's, etc.) She asks Selmy and Jorah about Rhaegar. Dany and Jon share the same narrative path of 'child to leader,' though in a kind of opposition, in that he is 'bastard' (but privileged) and she is 'regal' (but impoverished). (Dany also has to act as a woman in power, as opposed to a man, which is not insignificant in-universe and is really part of the opposition factor above.) We also have strictly more information about Jon from the the books, with more POVs around him, as well as Jon having many more chapters than Dany. Going back to another (IMHO) strong theme, a line from a Tom Stoppard play that holds true to almost all characters in ASoIaF, “The bad end unhappily; the good, unluckily. That is what tragedy means.” It is not some existing morality system that dictates 'bad' and 'good' is the the motivation to action, which, far too often, we as readers don't know. I wonder if another factor is "determining for yourself." Dany is always worried about her family, heritage, and Rhaegar, but is still developing her sense of self. Jon is always concerned about his identity in terms of what Ned taught him and his curiosity about who his mother is. Maybe they need to forget the past and figure out who they are themselves?
  6. Frankly, on this forum everyone has made almost all excuses, defending almost all actions, which only proves the point. That is the cost of living in a community with other people. It is about the malleability of empathy in a narrative. Either there is the assumption that there is a correct decision, with hindsight, which is not something anyone has, either in-universe or in the real world, so we are just going to dismiss that. Or there is the assumption of absolute right (correct) and wrong (incorrect), which frankly only exists in as much as GRRM wants there to be poetic justice in the created world. So there is no 'correct' choice, there is only the created narrative choice that the author made for characters for narrative purposes. Assuming that characters have free will makes no sense, they don't they are only telling a story. This also makes the assumption of a dichotomy between duty/obligation and desire/love, which is a false dichotomy. How is Jaime's duty to 1) 'Obey the King' and 2) 'Protect the innocent' about his duty versus his desire. (Answer: It is not, both about his choice of which to act on, both are a duty/obligations.) The real dichotomy is only Choice A or Choice B, in any given situation. We can dismiss in-universe legalistic arguments of "First duty is to the king," because this is an argument from a narrative analysis, about theme, not in-universe law, which is 1) inexact, 2) malleable (later sovereigns can retroactively change laws), and 3.) Incomplete (we don't actually know it).) What dictates what one "should" do? Duty, obligation, desire, and love are all factors in interpersonal relationships. To say that one or two are in opposition to the other(s) is over-simplifying. The who, why, what, where, and why of the given circumstance is the importance. For instance, many readers hate Jaime for throwing Bran of the tower (though Jaime had conflicting reasons for doing it (keeping himself, Cersei, and his children alive)); many readers love Jaime for killing Aerys (but Jaime had conflicting reasons for doing it, petty vengeance and saving 1,000s from dying in KL, and others ).
  7. The central theme of ASoIaF is this: Choice and consequence: it is difficult to honor conflicting promises in the face of life events happening. It is all over the books, central to almost all of conflicts, both large scale and interpersonal. Below are two passages that encapsulate this theme succinctly and elegantly. The old man seemed to sense his doubts. "Tell me, Jon, if the day should ever come when your lord father must needs choose between honor on the one hand and those he loves on the other, what would he do?" Jon hesitated. He wanted to say that Lord Eddard would never dishonor himself, not even for love, yet inside a small sly voice whispered, He fathered a bastard, where was the honor in that? And your mother, what of his duty to her, he will not even say her name. "He would do whatever was right," he said … ringingly, to make up for his hesitation. "No matter what." "Then Lord Eddard is a man in ten thousand. Most of us are not so strong. What is honor compared to a woman's love? What is duty against the feel of a newborn son in your arms … or the memory of a brother's smile? Wind and words. Wind and words. We are only human, and the gods have fashioned us for love. That is our great glory, and our great tragedy. - AGoT Jon VIII "How can you still count yourself a knight, when you have forsaken every vow you ever swore?" Jaime reached for the flagon to refill his cup. "So many vows . . . they make you swear and swear. Defend the king. Obey the king. Keep his secrets. Do his bidding. Your life for his. But obey your father. Love your sister. Protect the innocent. Defend the weak. Respect the gods. Obey the laws. It's too much. No matter what you do, you're forsaking one vow or the other." He took a healthy swallow of wine and closed his eyes for an instant, leaning his head back against the patch of nitre on the wall. "I was the youngest man ever to wear the white cloak." - ACoK Catlyn VII There are endless theories about grand conspiracies be they lords plotting against Aerys, a hundred years or more years of maesters conspiring to end the Targs, ageless magicians skin-changing/glamoring as everyone or Faceless Men being nearly everyone at the same time manipulating all events for the last 400 years. These almost all have fundamental flaw in that they take choice away from the characters in the story. They ignore the theme of choice/consequence and the inherent difficulties that come from that. What some other notable passages that explore this theme??
  8. What if Arthur Dayne was left-handed? What if Kermit the Frog was at the ToJ? How about Big Bird? The Swedish Chef? Bork-bork-bork!!
  9. 1) As a plot device, to be ambiguous for the readers (as mentioned above by my esteemed colleagues above). 2) Quaithe doesn't actually know what she is talking about. Same as Melisandre, Moqorro, MMD, and everyone else involved in 'magic.'
  10. Close, Dany is Mance and Dany's child yet to be born, who will be sent back in time to Dragonstone in time for the storm.
  11. This might be related to the line that absolutely needed to stay in the graphic novel adaptation. I don't recall the specifics, only something along the lines of there was a line from AGoT that GRRM said had to appear in the adaptation. @Ran might be able to supply specifics or details.
  12. This is not about the books. This is about fan fiction. Can we please have a separate section for this nonsense?
  13. I like beef jerky. Which house do you think is more good because I like beef jerky? Does anyone reference the text anymore? We need a new book.
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