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Mithras

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  1. Aeron’s dreams in the Forsaken chapter are not prophetic dreams or true visions. It is just Aeron’s subconscious speaking up under extreme duress and torture in the hands of his abuser. His religion (his only source of strength and stability and sanity) is failing him, hence the title Forsaken. What makes the whole thing worse is the use of a potent drug (shade of the evening) which gives him very vivid, nightmarish acid trips. Every element in these dreams can be explained by everything Aeron knows and fears about Euron, even if it is wholly in his subconscious. Let me start with a brief chronology.
     
    1. After the Kingsmoot, Aeron is captured and chained deep in the bowels of Silence. 
    2. They set sail to take the Shields. On the Silence, Aeron has his First Dream. 
    3. Once the Shields are taken, Aeron is transferred to Lord Hewett's dungeon in Oakenshield. This is the first dungeon he is referring to in this chapter.
    4. Victarion leaves for Meereen. 
    5. Falia Flowers brings food to Aeron in the dungeon and tells him that Victarion is gone.
    6. Aeron is taken to the Silence again and they leave Oakenshield.
    7. On the Silence, Euron confesses killing his brothers to Aeron.
    8. Euron takes the Isle of Pigs and uses it as one of his bases to raid the Reach. Aeron is thrown to the dungeon at the Isle of Pigs. This is the second dungeon he is referring to in this chapter. This is where the warlocks and other priests are thrown to his cell.
    9. Aeron has his Second Dream in this dungeon.
    10. At the end of this chapter, they take him out and tie him to the prow of Silence.
    First Dream
     
    Quote

     

    And when the Damphair slept, sagging in his chains, he heard the creak of a rusted hinge.
     
    “Urri!” he cried. There is no hinge here, no door, no Urri. His brother Urrigon was long dead, yet there he stood. One arm was black and swollen, stinking with maggots, but he was still Urri, still a boy, no older than the day he died. 
     
    “You know what waits below the sea, brother?” 
     
    “The Drowned God,” Aeron said, “the watery halls.”
     
    Urri shook his head. “Worms... worms await you, Aeron.” 
     
    When he laughed his face sloughed off and the priest saw that it was not Urri but Euron, the smiling eye hidden. He showed the world his blood eye now, dark and terrible. Clad head to heel in scale as dark as onyx, he sat upon a mound of blackened skulls as dwarfs capered round his feet and a forest burned behind him.
     
    “The bleeding star bespoke the end,” he said to Aeron. “These are the last days, when the world shall be broken and remade. A new god shall be born from the graves and charnel pits.”
     
    Then Euron lifted a great horn to his lips and blew, and dragons and krakens and sphinxes came at his command and bowed before him. “Kneel, brother,” the Crow’s Eye commanded. “I am your king, I am your god. Worship me, and I will raise you up to be my priest.”
     
    “Never. No godless man may sit the Seastone Chair!”
     
    “Why would I want that hard black rock? Brother, look again and see where I am seated.” 
     
    Aeron Damphair looked. The mound of skulls was gone. Now it was metal underneath the Crow’s Eye: a great, tall, twisted seat of razor sharp iron, barbs and blades and broken swords, all dripping blood. Impaled upon the longer spikes were the bodies of the gods. The Maiden was there and the Father and the Mother, the Warrior and Crone and Smith...even the Stranger. They hung side by side with all manner of queer foreign gods: the Great Shepherd and the Black Goat, three-headed Trios and the Pale Child Bakkalon, the Lord of Light and the butterfly god of Naath. 
     
    And there, swollen and green, half-devoured by crabs, the Drowned God festered with the rest, seawater still dripping from his hair. 
     
    Then Euron Crow’s Eye laughed again, and the priest woke screaming in the bowels of Silence, as piss ran down his leg. It was only a dream, a vision born of foul black wine.

     

    • This dream happened not long after the Kingsmoot. Therefore, Aeron still had some defiance and sanity left in him. The despair had not fully kicked in and Aeron still had some hope for deliverance by the hands of Victarion and Drowned God. He was a long way from realizing the extent of his hopelessness. However, doubt was already eating away his faith given Euron’s victory at the Kingsmoot and brazenly blaspheming the gods without any consequence. As a result, this dream was bad but not as bad as his second dream was going to be.
    • The imagery in this dream is mostly about Euron offending every god and blaspheming in every faith, yet none of them smites him down, which is why Aeron’s fear of Euron keeps growing constantly. No doubt, Euron is doing this on purpose and with malicious intent. He enjoys tormenting his victims and he is trying to break Aeron’s faith.
    • In ACoK, Aeron thought that the bleeding star was a sign from the Drowned God telling the ironborn to set sail for plunder, conquest and victory. In fact, he prayed to kill all those foreign gods as in the dream in the name of the Drowned God and conquer the green lands by taking the Iron Throne. Now, that belief is crushed by Euron as even the Drowned God becomes his victim, at least in Aeron’s subconscious. The creepy horn blowing at the Kingsmoot and Euron’s talk about dragons, plunder, conquering the Iron Throne etc. all bleed into this nightmare.
    Second Dream
     
    Quote

    The dreams were even worse the second time. He saw the longships of the Ironborn adrift and burning on a boiling blood-red sea. He saw his brother on the Iron Throne again, but Euron was no longer human. He seemed more squid than man, a monster fathered by a kraken of the deep, his face a mass of writhing tentacles. Beside him stood a shadow in woman’s form, long and tall and terrible, her hands alive with pale white fire. Dwarves capered for their amusement, male and female, naked and misshapen, locked in carnal embrace, biting and tearing at each other as Euron and his mate laughed and laughed and laughed...

    • This time, Aeron was in a far worse state than the previous one. He had learned that Victarion was gone. He had no hope left for deliverance. Clearly his god had forsaken him or his god was a lie all along.
    • The burning longships of the ironborn result from Aeron’s realization that Euron does not even care for the ironborn or the Old Way. Just recently, he had told Aeron about the Shields and why they are poisoned gifts. Aeron realized that Euron did not care about the lives of the ironborn as long as he got what he needed. That is why Euron sheds the last bit of humanity Aeron could attribute to him in this dream and appears as a monster.
    • The shadow in woman’s form is the dragon queen. Previously, Falia Flowers told Aeron about Euron’s plan to wed the dragon queen (the most beautiful woman in the world), who would rule all Westeros at his side. That information bleeds into this dream. The dwarves are just subjects beneath Euron and they only exist for the amusement of Euron and his mate.

    In short, don't get carried away.

    B)

  2. Quote

    “Tell Lady Sansa why I keep you by us,” said Cersei.

    Ser Ilyn opened his mouth and emitted a choking rattle. His pox-scarred face had no expression.

    “He’s here for us, he says,” the queen said. “Stannis may take the city and he may take the throne, but I will not suffer him to judge me. I do not mean for him to have us alive.”

    “Us?”

    “You heard me. So perhaps you had best pray again, Sansa, and for a different outcome. The Starks will have no joy from the fall of House Lannister, I promise you.” She reached out and touched Sansa’s hair, brushing it lightly away from her neck.

    Cersei spent almost all her life at King’s Landing. She has no real connection to Casterly Rock. Power flows from King’s Landing and Cersei is addicted to it. She did not flee during the Blackwater and she will not flee ever. In fact, after the tragedies she suffered since Blackwater and will further suffer in the Winds, she will be even more resolved to make her last stand at the seat of ultimate power. She will not go down meekly. She will not give the joy of victory to whoever comes to overthrow her. She will just want to see the city burn.

    Thus, either Cersei burns King's Landing at the end of TWoW or fAegon does not take King's Landing ever.

  3. GRRM talked about the butterfly effect of deviating from the source material. I think it should be clear how even smallest changes necessitate even larger changes to keep the whole thing afloat. For example, the moment D&D dropped the valonqar part of Maggy’s prophecy (probably because they did not want this “ugly end” for their favorite actors), a lot of things automatically change. The act of burning King’s Landing is given to Dany to show her dark turn. They would not have needed to do this if they incuded Dany’s civil war with fAegon or her bloody campaign in Essos while coming to Westeros. And so on.

    So, here is how I see the story ends in broad strokes:

    fAegon: He conquers major parts of Stormlands, Dorne and the Reach throughout TWoW. By the end of TWoW, he grows strong enough to threaten the Casterly Rock and the King’s Landing. However, this is also when Dany finally arrives. Their bloody civil war war continues for the best part of ADoS. Many cities and towns are sacked. Thousands are slain. Wherever the dragons dance, people die. Neither side attempts to take King’s Landing from Cersei while the Dance is still going on. Eventually, fAegon dies and Dany wins.

    Jaime/Cersei: The victorious Dany descends on King’s Landing to overthrow Cersei and complete her conquest of Westeros. Cersei believes that Dany is the Younger and More Beautiful Queen and Tyrion beside her is the valonqar. Cersei chooses to decide the manner of her own death as defiance of Maggy’s Prophecy. She prepares the wildfire plot to deny Dany of her prize and Tyrion of the joy of strangling her. She might even think of taking them down with her. However, Jaime interferes because he is the real valonqar. They kill each other and die together as heavily foreshadowed. As they die, Cersei’s wildfire destroys King’s Landing.

    Dany: Dany does not have any part in the destruction of King’s Landing other than marching towards the capitol. But by that time, Dany will have burned several other major cities during the course of the Dance. Her stains from the Dance (and her trail of destruction in Essos) are more than enough to show that she has become a tyrant, not a savior. After seeing the destruction of King’s Landing just when she was about to take it, Dany turns her eyes towards the North and confronts Jon. She dies in childbirth instead of getting murdered by Jon.

    Tyrion: There is no way he survives the series. His dark turn will only get worse. The best case scenario is that he dies in a similar manner to Daemon Targaryen, i.e. half suicide, half heroic sacrifice while taking down worse villain than him.

    Sansa: No Queen in the North or Lady of Winterfell. She will make a Lannister marriage and be the Lady of the Rock.

    Jon/Arya: Jon gathers the remnants of Dany’s armies after her death and leads the living in the Battle for the Dawn. After the victory, the Great Council at Harrenhal elects him as the king. Otherwise, GRRM will have a hard time justifying the amount of effort and emphasis he is putting into RLJ. That being said, the war will not be over yet. There is still “something” to be done at the Heart of Winter in order to restore balance to the seasons and prevent Others from ever coming again. Jon designates “someone” as his heir and leaves for the Heart of Winter. After sometime, Arya leaves too and starts following Jon’s tracks to find out what happened to him. After all, “the lone wolf dies but he pack survives” and “different roads sometimes lead to the same castle” and “When the spring thaw comes, they will find your body with a needle still locked tight between your frozen fingers”. Also there is the following arrangement from AGoT:

    Quote

     

    A Game of Thrones - Tyrion III

    My uncle is out there,” Jon Snow said softly, leaning on his spear as he stared off into the darkness. “The first night they sent me up here, I thought, Uncle Benjen will ride back tonight, and I’ll see him first and blow the horn. He never came, though. Not that night and not any night.”

    Give him time,” Tyrion said.

    Far off to the north, a wolf began to howl. Another voice picked up the call, then another. Ghost cocked his head and listened. “If he doesn’t come back,” Jon Snow promised, “Ghost and I will go find him.” He put his hand on the direwolf’s head.

    I believe you,” Tyrion said, but what he thought was, And who will go find you? He shivered.

    A Game of Thrones - Arya II

    Her father had been fighting with the council again. Arya could see it on his face when he came to table, late again, as he had been so often.

     

    It is as if GRRM’s answer to who will go find Jon is Arya. The story does not have further Arya and Jon chapters. One day, the surviving characters in the south can tell from the sudden coming of the spring that the mission must have been successful. They start waiting for the “Return of the King”. But neither Jon nor Arya return within the pages left. Their fates remain uncertain.

    Bran: One might suggest that the “someone” Jon designates as his heir before leaving for the Heart of Winter is Bran. This might even be GRRM’s original plan. But I am convinced that GRRM will change that when he comes to that point and send Bran to the Isle of Faces, away from human contact ever again. That is the most proper way to end Bran’s arc and GRRM should eventually see it. For me, the most reasonable heir Jon would choose is Rickon. If not, there will be babies (such as the one Dany dies giving birth to or even the future baby of Sansa from her Lannister husband or another one). A council of regents will rule until this heir comes to age.

    Theon: He will be the Lord of the Iron Islands and the new Tyland Lannister of the council of regents.

    Davos/Sam: Members of the council of regents.

    The Wall/Night’s Watch: Since the seasons will return to normal and the Others will be permanently defeated, there will be no need for a new Wall or a Night’s Watch to guard it. All the surviving brothers will be released from their vows.

    The North: The North as we know it will be no more at the end of the story.

    1. SSM: The North is the place that suffers the consequences of winters most severely.

    2. Others: Unlike the show, they will have a huge impact in the books. The North will take the brunt of the icy apocalypse. Do we really expect the North to survive the story intact as if the Others were just a bad weather or as if the Long Night was just a single bad night?

    3. Jon vs. Mance: There is a poetic irony of Jon finding himself in the shoes of Mance as in seeing the futility of trying to hold their ground against the dead. At a certain point, Jon might be expected to give up trying to fight the dead off and decide to abandon their homelands. His so-called “Azor Ahai dream” from ADwD might be interpreted as such. While trying to hold the Wall, Jon realizes that he is the only person left defending the Wall. There is no point of trying to hold the Wall if it means the deaths of everyone including Jon's family and friends. It should not come to that. Jon might be Mance 2.0 by leading a mass evacuation of the survivors to southern kingdoms. The North is not a place, it’s a people”. Mance was considered as leading a massive wildling host in order to invade the Realm while in fact he was fleeing from the Others. Jon might be mistaken just the same, especially by Dany.

    4. Chekhov’s plagues: Grey plague or Shivers or Winter Fever or any other disease that might cause a huge depopulation in the North, making their war against the dead impossible.

    5. Fire & Blood: Massive lawlessness and starvation during bad winters. In one case, many Northmen sold themselves to slavery to buy food for their families throughout the winter. I guess the stakes should be higher in the upcoming Long Night.

    6. Fire & Blood: Cregan Stark brought a host of Northmen to the war, from which none of them expected to return. This is the Northern way and GRRM is constantly bringing it up. These people did not get the war and the death they volunteered for but they did not return to their homes either. Instead, they were married to the many widows of the Dance of Dragons in Riverlands. Because of thousands of marriages like these, Riverlands saw the revival of the faith of the Old Gods which the Northmen brought with them. This might be a hint that after their country is overrun by the Others, the surviving Northmen will settle in Riverlands as refugees and another merging of cultures will take place. Riverlands already took significant damage from the War of the 5 Kings. There will be even more decimation during the upcoming Dance of Dragons 2.0 and whatever damage the Others will cause. Therefore, Riverlands will be suitably depopulated for a possible merging with the surviving Northmen.

    7. New North and New Free Folk: After the Others are dealt with, the North will not be repopulated by the Northmen. There will be no such excessive population to fill such a vast country to begin with. There will be no returning to the pre-war state, at least for a long time. The North will mostly turn into a wilderness, much like the Lands Beyond the Wall (while there was a Wall). Surviving wildlings and clansmen and people out of the feudal system will live in the North as the new free folk. As Ygritte told Jon, the whole northern vs southron thing is a matter of perspective.

    8. TWOIAF: After a couple of centuries, a fool will write a history book arguing that the Others were just a tale fabricated as justification for the savage Northmen coming south and conquering war-torn countries. A fool like thisArchmaester Fomas's Lies of the Ancients—though little regarded these days for its erroneous claims regarding the founding of Valyria and certain lineal claims in the Reach and westerlands—does speculate that the Others of legend were nothing more than a tribe of the First Men, ancestors of the wildlings, that had established itself in the far north. Because of the Long Night, these early wildlings were then pressured to begin a wave of conquests to the south. That they became monstrous in the tales told thereafter, according to Fomas, reflects the desire of the Night's Watch and the Starks to give themselves a more heroic identity as saviors of mankind, and not merely the beneficiaries of a struggle over dominion.”

    9. Growth arc: That means no one will rule Winterfell in the end because Winterfell will be no more. Surviving Stark kids will have to found new homes for themselves. The home of their childhood will be just a memory. This is a bittersweet growth arc that fits ASOIAF.

     

     

  4. That might just be, GRRM coming across a cool old name while researching

     

    Also, isn't Donner Germanic for "Thunder?" In my home language, Afrikaans for instance, we call thunder "Donderweer" orThunderweather

     

    Thursday means Thor's Day in reference to Thor. Its German is exactly the same. Donner comes from Donar, Germanic name of Thor.

  5. Theon/Lady Dustin's descent into Winterfell crypts, wasnt just dialogue, but fit an empty hole with plot.

     

    It's stated that a Barrow King of old, warred with the Starks. The Stark's won, and to maintain compliance and peace, The Barrow King awarded his daughter to them. I'd theorize, Brandon The Breaker won this prize.

     

    Lady Dustin explains to Theon, that she had a thing for Eddard's brother, Brandon Stark.

     

    The idea is, the Barrow King's daughter was a Dustin. Lady Dustin of old, daughter of a barrow king, could inherit the monicker (like Sansa=wolf queen; Daenerys=dragon queen, etc) Corpse Queen.

     

    A Dustin, fell for a Brandon, and things go awry (both timelines). There's also a missing sword in both (Ice, in aeons past, and one of the iron blades of the now)

     

    Lady Dustin is not a Dustin by birth :S

  6. Also, in the book, the brothers assassinate Jon because he is deserting the night's watch to go participate in a political war. In the show they murdered him because they were butthurt about wildlings, even though they have proof that Jon's decision was the best option by far.

    The plans for the "assassination" of Jon started long before the Pink Letter in the books. What they tried to do was murder in the books as well.

  7. In George's original draft, he planned to have Dany murder her husband because he would murder her brother and not be committed to the invasion of Westeros. George changed this into what we have today: Dany comes to the point of suicide due to the abuse and rape from Drogo but she has a dream about dragons and suddenly, she is strong!



    The original plan was much better. I never see any feminist criticism about this stupid turn of events in the books.


  8. I believe she will be in WF, I always believe she is the person to restore house Stark and be the magnet that brings her siblings together.

    As far as the GOHH, I still believe it's Baleish the Titan of Bravos and burner of the realm.

    I think Theon or Roose will do in Ramsey.

    But just as the books are GRRM story, the TV version is tied to D & D and things could change.

    Except it is all but confirmed that Rickon will be the first Stark to return to Winterfell (at least physically :)).

    He will be Stannis' public figure to bind the North to his cause. George promised us that Stannis is one of the lies Dany is supposed to slay; so, he should empower Stannis enough so that he could be a challenge to Dany when she comes. The only way to do that is to give him the North and that Manderly Fleet in the making.

  9. That reminds me, there was some question about the "evil-ness" of the Others and that they might be misunderstood. However, they are clearly positioned as bad guys here - the ultimate antagonists - and I'm wondering if there will be some ambiguity in the books.

    Although I believe the Others are the ultimate bad guys, I think there might be a few good Others who do not want to kill people and turn them. George is the writer of Fevre Dream and that was exactly the case for the vampires there. A good vampire and his followers were trying to find a cure that would release them from being addicted to human blood.

  10. I wish the R&R thread were still open.

    Just rewatched the preview -did anyone else cringe at Stannis' line?

    "We march to victory or we march to defeat. " Way to cover all the bases. He follows it up with "Either way we move forward " but it's still sounds clunky.

    They probably learned that the Boltons married Sansa and anticipated that some Northern Lords are going to join them. Meanwhile, the winter must be hitting hard on them. I think that is making the way for Stannis to send Davos to bring some Northern Lords to his side. In his absence, Mel will try to burn Shireen. Stannis will not yield until the news from Davos arrives.

    Meanwhile, Davos will discover that Rickon is alive and well with the Umbers. But before that, the news of his false death might be spread.

    etc.

  11. I think other people have given you explanations, but far too detailed and possibly confusing because it seems like you are asking about the basics of what he said, not the thematic/dramatic purposes of what he said.

    "No one" means she is not Arya. She's not anyone. He wants her to become "no one" as in forgetting her identity.

    "Some one" means taking on the role of someone else, now that she's "no one" (AKA no longer Arya). So she's ready to "take on another face". Another persona.

    You must first be no one (have no identity) to become someone (else).

    I don't agree. Becoming no one is to stipping off old identity completely. Arya is not ready to do that because she still has lots of Arya in her. But she has learned a bit of lying and acting. So, she is ready to be someone else, meaning that she can pretend to be someone else. That refers to the Cat of the Canals in the books. She didnot change her face but assumed a false identity and roamed the streets and docks, selling stuff and spying on secrets.

  12. In ADWD something similar happened. I'd have to recheck if it the same thing was in AFFC too.

    Hmm yeah. But even Arya herself thought that she should stop that stupid lip bitting habit of hers :)

    In AFfC, the KM was trying to catch her unawares while hitting her with his stick and faking a different voice.

  13. That's the first time I've seen someone complain because the KM does hit and beat her in the books on different occasions.

    Yes. Arya was never beaten for her misbehaving because she realized that the FM raise their hands only for killing. When the KM beat her while she was blind, it was meant to improve her senses. One can argue that Jaqen's beating upon her lies can be more or less the same thing but it looked more like Arya was being punished, not trained.

  14. The one issue I do have with the current TV version is why Loras hasn't demanded Trial by Combat, he is one of the best fighters in the Kingdom.

    The trial didnot start yet. After the meeting, the HS said that he has enough evidences to start a trial. Loras should demand trial by combat as soon as the trial starts. Or we will have another plot hole.

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