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About PrettyPig

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    The Pork That Was Promised

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  1. PrettyPig

    Heresy 205 bats and little green men

    Indeed. The HoBaw is also windowless, and sports the black and white doors with a carved moon face. And isn't it interesting that the more important/more sacred the location (like where the faces are stored), the further underground it is? Sounds a bit like the Stark crypts too, doesn't it? The old Kings of Winter buried on the lowest levels? (Fun fact: I am 100% convinced that GRRM based the HoBaW on the "Black House", the original Church of Satan founded by Anton Lavey. Relevance to this discussion: 0.)
  2. PrettyPig

    Heresy 205 bats and little green men

    Yes, absolutely. And recall that the HotU is long, low, and windowless, and the face in the Black Gate is blind. Also the ebony and weirwood doors, the glowing gate in the darkness of the well - black and white, darkness and moonlight. The Others only come out at night when the sun is gone; the Undying are sealed away in a dark chamber, a "murky gloom" that Dany can barely see in. The theme here is darkness, and living in a place where seeing with physical eyes is not necessary. I'm also reminded of Tobho Mott's establishment on the Street of Steel, and the black and white doors of the entrance. Tobho Mott is Qohorik, - Qohor is the "City of Sorcerers", and are the only smiths knowledgeable in working Valyrian steel...the secret said to be an infusion of blood. So we have darkness balanced out by a "milky" light, black/white, sorcery, and various things that seem to feed on blood. This is not coincidence. Quite possibly. I mean, the Grey King stole the dragon's fire and brought it to the earth, and then made a boat out the wood of a blood-drinking tree. Also, as the Ghost of High Heart reminds us: Unless I'm misremembering, the Ironborn - Harren and his predecessors - are First Men...and they spent countless centuries razing the green lands even before Harren moved inland, with fire and axes and who knows what else, lighting up the familiar darkness and cutting down the sacred trees.
  3. PrettyPig

    Heresy 205 bats and little green men

    I think this may be very close to right, if not exactly right. I haven't been able to dive into this nearly to the extent that I want, but the idea goes back to the origins of First Men in Essos, and whether or not there is a "strain" that is rooted in darkness/night/cold/black magic - a strain that is also somewhat connected to bats/dragons/winged creatures that live in caves. The weirwoods and COTF may also be tied to that strain; conflict arose because somebody literally discovered fire. I *suspect* that this will boil down to some kind of contention between/involving the former empires of Qarth and Asshai - two cities that have significance in the main series but that we know very little about. (The World Book has bupkis on Qarth, which tells me GRRM is saving it for later. Same with House Dayne, too. My rule of thumb is that anything that is NOT outlined in TWOIAF is going to be important in the main books, and interconnected to boot.) Haven't fleshed it out yet, but IMO we are going to find out that ice and fire are branches off the same tree, so to speak.
  4. Had another random thought flash, can't believe I didn't think of it for the OP. During the showdown at the God's Eye Town on the south shore of the lake, Arya throws Jaqen an axe, giving him (and his minions) the means to hack out of the wagon. Arya saves Jaqen from FIRE. From BURNING ALIVE, trapped inside a place from which he can't escape. And Jaqen then surfaces at Harrenhal bearing his gift basket of death, a thank you to Arya for helping him escape the flames...saving him from reliving the fate of Black Harren Hoare. Arya was wrong - she isn't the ghost in Harrenhal. But she DID release the real one.
  5. Thank you, and nice to "see" you around here! Please, chime in with thoughts...somebody needs to, since apparently I can't even keep up with my own dang thread. :/
  6. PrettyPig

    Heresy 205 bats and little green men

    In what will be a surprise to no one, I have a theory in the works on this. lol The gist is that long long ago on a continent far far away, there existed a society of old that was either mostly nocturnal, or resided mostly underground. Yes, I realize that sounds insane. However, there is a major theme of 'darkness'/'night' running through this series in both characters and places - bats are an element, as are the tall pale people of Qarth, names like "Mole's Town", etc. ANd of course, I am now out of time to finish this thought.
  7. PrettyPig

    Duncan saved Rhaegar despite Aegon V?

    There was most certainly a plan for a sacrifice- remember there’s also the parallel of Dany being near birth, and the drama in Drogo’s tent ( fighting with his blood riders) throwing her into labor...very similar to what we see with Rhaella. That conflict in Dany’s story leads me to believe that yes, there was a faction at Summerhall that was opposed to what Egg was doing, and just like Drogo’s blood riders, tried to stop it. In the aftermath, baby Rhaego died (so we’re told), but baby Rhaegar lived. There are already very clear and rock solid parallels between Dany’s tent ritual w/ MMD and what we know about Ned’s encounter at the TOJ- I haven’t plugged Summerhall into the pattern yet, but I am quite confident that this event would fit nicely and be the FIRST of three blood sacrifice rituals. The first two failed because the Targs heading it up didn’t have the right recipe and/or combined with someone trying to shut it down.
  8. Oh, for sure...and that drives us into the eternal argument re: Predeterminism/Fate vs. Free Will, which is something I didn't really want to get into too much here because it can literally go around and around forever. I want to (eventually) come back to one of your earlier posts about Arya's "consequences" post-Harrenhal and whether they are positive or negative or both - I was reminded of the phrase "our lives are but the flutter of moth's wings" or whatever it was when Bloodraven was telling Bran about the weirwood's concept of time, and that brought to mind the Butterfly Effect: butterfly flaps its wings in South America and causes a tsunami off the coast of Japan, etc. Everything in these consequential sequences is butterfly-effect stuff, and we'll probably never be able to separate out good from bad, really. It just "is".
  9. Oh Seams, I so love your posts and never have time to give them the response they deserve when you write them. The entirety of this one was amazing and I will absolutely come back to it, but I wanted to touch on this one this before I lose the train of thought. At a different forum I'm currently on a very shallow dive into the Marianas Trench that is the influence on the story from GRRM's Catholic upbringing. I got a boost from @Lollygag due to a link she posted about Bael/Baal as a prince of the underworld; Baal is also one of the name of Satan as mentioned in the OP, so naturally I went down a rabbit hole into the Bible and the areas that would have caught the interest of a chubby, overimaginative kid from New Jersey during long & dull worship services: fire and wrath, Revelations end-times stuff, etc. This led me to begin exploring the role of archangels, particularly those that are slated to be around during the Apocalypse. Your mention of Brienne battling Rorge and Biter (the "minor demons" accompanying Jaqen), slaying this "host", if you will, ties in with her potential as one of these archangels: Uriel, the "Fiery Palm", "Light of God", who "stands at the Gate of Eden with a fiery sword" and represents repentance - Uriel the Warrior, Uriel the "Just". (I have preliminarily identified Bran as Michael, the "prince" of angels, and Sam as something of a Gabriel/Raphael combo - this is totally a work in progress though.) Much to say about this representation, but again, am out of time. *sigh* Thank you for triggering this association, however, and for the astounding parallels about Brienne!
  10. I don’t disagree with this- GRRM even said this so no, I doubt the GO or the MFG or whatever is going to make a personal appearance. That being said, we’ve got a story in which there are plenty of human/human-ish folks acting as AGENTS of those gods, and THEY have magic... so even if the gods themselves aren’t real or aren’t going to show up, they weren’t the problem anyway. The problem is their very real emissaries stirring up drama and using their hinky voodoo while doing so.
  11. PrettyPig

    Heresy 204; of cabbages, prophecies and kings

    I believe @The Fattest Leech has a nice thread-theory about this that you might like...
  12. Oh, nice. Completely forgot about that. I have trouble believing that he stayed out of the fray due to strict adherence to the NW vows like we see with another brother, Aemon...but now that I think about that semi-parallel situation, I’m kind of wondering about our dear old Maester and what this could be telling us. Someone involved in dark magic trying to take over the realm, a Great War, dragons....and relatives in high places at the Wall. Hmmm. Good find!
  13. PrettyPig

    Heresy 204; of cabbages, prophecies and kings

    At this point given what they've done with the plot, the only acceptable "holy shit" moment for me will be the complete obliteration of the continent of Westeros by a sudden eruption of a massive supervolcano. "All hail King Jon and Queen Daenerys Targaryen, First of their Names, rightful rulers of Meereen and the North, the Andals and the Rhoynar and the Fir....." *rumble* *rumble* *BOOM* This expectation goes double should what they've done with the plot turns out to hold true to the books, too. If that is the case, all of Westeros must sink into the sea in cataclysmic fiery doom.
  14. Maybe that WAS his suffering... watching all this bad stuff happen to other people, but being helpless to do anything about it for whatever reason. Arya isn’t at Winterfell to help resist Theon raze her home. She watches the Hound kill her champion Beric (only mostly dead, lol) at the “trial”, allowing the Hound to prevail and not serve justice for Mycah. She and Sandor get to the Twins right as her family and people are being slaughtered, and gets conked by Sandor before she can “help”. On and on, always too little and too late. Howland might have experienced the same. ETA: Arya feeling helpless and powerless is what led her to make the contract with Jaqen in the first place...and then for the rest of her journey, she is reminded over and over again of that same helplessness and powerlessness—until she breaks down and uses the iron coin that bonds her in servitude. I don’t think it’s a reach to consider Howland experiencing the same. That sort of deliberate taunting, salt in the wound, is the work of a crueler god.
  15. Oooh, and that just triggered a thought... resting place of Hoares. Hoares/whores wordplay here, whores being those who provide services - services that satisfy base and selfish desires - in exchange for payment....sometimes cheap, sometimes dear, depending on quality and expertise of the whore. (There’s a great thread on this here somewhere, can’t link from my phone right now.) That association sort of brings it back around to Black Harren Hoare and potential for a malevolent “god” at Harrenhal, willing to provide a service for a price.