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About SFDanny

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  1. Very true. Unfortunately, the fact that Elia has to respond to Aerys's summons also means she can be brought back to King's Landing for other purposes. Also unfortunately, we don't know who was the maester on Dragonstone. We only know that Cressen comes there with Stannis.My point is less that Pycelle is necessary to push a sickly Elia into the grave, but that such a scheme would fit into Tywin's plans for Cersei. Or at least the plans he once had. To the OP's question, the answer is there are lots of candidates, but the time in we are talking about is afterTywin breaks with Aerys and resigns his office as Hand over Jaime's appointment to the Kingsguard. Correct me if I'm wrong here @Kandrax. It likely eliminates the possibility of a Cersei marriage with Rhaegar or Viserys. The fact Tywin had gone so far in arranging a marriage between Jaime and Lysa also is a declaration of sorts of where his loyalties lay. The question becomes, is Aerys's gambit with Jaime and his holding of him as a de facto hostage stop Tywin from marrying Cersei into the STAB alliance? If not, I think Elbert Arryn the best candidate, but the thought of a Ned/Cersei or a Stannis/Cersei marriage makes me cringe just thinking about it. My estimation of Tywin tells me he would do just about anything to get payback against Aerys.
  2. Don't forget Stannis. We don't know when the Stannis/Selyse marriage was arranged, so it is possible this match would be considered. Or even the young Renly. Ned and Benjen are certainly possible. My first guess, however is Elbert Arryn. He is the heir to the Vale, and that would be the best anti-Targaryen match. The usually marriage for Cersei would be to one of Tywin's bannermen. So this discussion depends on if Tywin is committed to the STAB conspiracy or he is still trying to somehow manage a Targaryen marriage. Would Tywin use the Lannister sycophant Pycelle to do away with Elia? It would open up the possibility of a Rhaegar union with Cersei, but Tywin would still have to figure out how to do away with Aerys and Rhaegar - and possibly Aegon. Once he murders Elia it isn't realistic to view that secret never being discovered. If Tywin has really gone over to the STAB conspiracy as it appears he is doing with the Jaime/Lysa marriage, then it makes sense for him to consider marriage into one of the other Great Houses. As I said above Elbert Arryn makes the most sense, but the others are possible. I think the age difference between most of the other candidates make them less likely.
  3. SFDanny

    Is unbroken Male descent important in Westeros?

    Absolutely. Not only that but the story of Bael the Bard as we hear it tells us that it is Bael's son who inherits the the crown of the King in the North through his mother's bloodline. If we accept the story, the Stark male line is broken.
  4. SFDanny

    What do we really know about Ashara Dayne?

    We don't know, but we have hints that it wasn't Wylla. We know from Ned's discussion with Robert among the barrows of the First Men that Robert doesn't know what Wylla looks like. Yet it is a very good likelihood that Ned stops in King's Landing to tell Robert of Lyanna's death on his return North. We know he told him and they were reunited in grief which points to this not being something communicated by raven. If Wylla is with Ned in King's Landing then Robert would know of her through Varys if nothing else. It's very hard to believe Robert would not want to see the woman who made Ned Stark forget his vows. Secondly, if R+L=J is true then the last place Ned would take Jon and Wylla is to King's Landing. Fourteen years later Ned freaks out about being forced to consider taking Jon with him to King's Landing, so it is highly unlikely he would have chanced taking Wylla and Jon there as wet nurse and suckling babe. Much better to send Howland, Jon, and a different wet nurse on ahead to Winterfell while Ned deals with Robert and the vipers in King's Landing. Last Wylla has no problem in Starfall to tell everyone Jon is her child. The idea of Ned allowing a woman who tells such a tale to do so in Winterfell and while Catelyn and Robb are there presumes a level of insensitivity to Catelyn's honor that changes the character of Ned to be unrecognizable. It is one thing to bring a bastard infant to Winterfell. It is quite another to set up his mother to be there when Catelyn arrives.
  5. Started by reading the books through, but I've also listened to all the audiobooks while driving. Lately, I read AND listen at the same time. A method I highly recommend. Tyrion is one of the most complex characters Martin has created. Truly "gray" instead of just good or evil. Brilliant, but broken.One of the great characters in literature. Shae is, in the end, what the reader and Tyrion fear she is - all about her own personal gain. To the point of willing to lie under oath and put Tyrion's head on the block as a result. Tyrion's murder of her is still wrong on so many levels, but the reader is challenged to see both the pain of Tyrion and the needs of Shae in understanding the tragic nature of the killing for both. Of course, death is the final tragedy for Shae, but Tyrion's pain screams out to the reader as well. A Hobson's choice, or perhaps a choice between eviler and evilest? I've got to go with Voldemort.
  6. In so many interviews that I've lost count, George is asked about his writing style and he responds with the gardener vs. architect metaphor. He is a gardener. It should be a surprise to no one on these boards that Martin doesn't have it all planned out, or that he changes his story as he writes it and sees where it can go. The Blackfyres and the history of those rebellions surely are just one example of what he does. The richness of that part of the backstory is a tribute to his style working for him. Don't feel cheated if you don't like the method of writing. Only if the end product isn't any good. So far George is doing just fine except in the speed department. Even there I want quality over speed every time.
  7. SFDanny

    Is unbroken Male descent important in Westeros?

    Because The Winds of Winter and Fire and Blood are not out yet! I would take issue with your hint about women wielding power, and I think Tolkien makes it very clear Ar Pharazon's actions in taking the throne from the rightful female heir is an evil act that foreshadows the doom that follows. But enough about the Silmarillion. I don't think you would disagree that Martin provides cultures in his series that show that Father to son inheritance is not a key in their belief systems. Even the Targaryens, who adopt much of the Andal traditions when they conquer the Seven Kingdoms have many examples to show this is not critical. Egg being chosen over young Maegor is one of those. I would even say that the Green position in the Dance is more motivated by using old Andal tradition to win power than it is any commitment to that tradition. Off to bed. Good Night, LV
  8. SFDanny

    Is unbroken Male descent important in Westeros?

    Sorry, that wasn't clear. But it is interesting that in Tolkien it is a usurper of the male line over the rightful female inheritor that dooms his world by breaking the ban of the Valar. Those who survive to set up the kingdoms in exile are descendants of a female line. The female line is the faithful, the usurpers and those who fall under the power of evil are the power hungry illegitimate male line. My point being, in fantasy literature, and in "sacred" texts it's complicated and not just Father to Son inheritance that is important.
  9. SFDanny

    Is unbroken Male descent important in Westeros?

    Not from Father to eldest son. Valandil is Isildur's youngest son and his line survives through him to Aragorn. Still in literature he is the epitome of the "hidden prince" trope, at least among modern fantasy which ASoI&F certainly follows.
  10. SFDanny

    Is unbroken Male descent important in Westeros?

    This would seem to be more important in Houses of Andal descent. It certainly is not among the wildings, and in Dorne.
  11. SFDanny

    Is unbroken Male descent important in Westeros?

    So Aragorn wasn't the ideal? No doubt Numenor sank beneath the waves because the descent from the eldest child was usurped by a male line? Ar-Pharazon the ideal? Not in Tolkien.
  12. SFDanny

    Death of Gardner Dozois

    Just saw this news and was trying to verify it. This is horrible. I've never met the man, but he contributed so much both as an editor and author. Terrible loss. To George and all his friends and family my condolences for your loss.
  13. SFDanny

    What do we really know about Ashara Dayne?

    If we go on theories with no evidence we can make most things possible. Fifteen year old Jaime was at Harrenhal, for all we know of, part of one day and then sent off to King's Landing. We have no evidence of any relationship between Ashara and him, but we have Jaime's declaration that he has always been faithful to Cersei. So, making up a story line of Ashara falling in love with him from afar (even his tryst with Cersei in King's Landing occurs at a time when we expect Ashara was on Dragonstone with Elia) without evidence of even an introduction between the two stretches things quite a bit.
  14. SFDanny

    What do we really know about Ashara Dayne?

    I would reread the quote. It does not say she was dishonored and then she turned to Stark. Let me borrow from @AmberEmpress: We don't know when the dishonoring took place or how it took place. Does Ser Barristan mean the actual affair, or the affair's disclosure? Does the man who has the affair expose their relationship for some reason? Does he publicly reject her? We don't know any of this. Rather it speaks to Selmy's regret for never having declared his love for Ashara, and for keeping to his vows.
  15. SFDanny

    What do we really know about Ashara Dayne?

    There are lots of threads on this subject, but I don't want to summarize them in trying to answer. Let me just say I don't think there is much doubt Ashara was "dishonored" at Harrenhal. Selmy was there and would know the rumors and the basic facts. There is little reason to doubt his recollection. That doesn't mean he knows the intimate details. We don''t know quite a lot of details, intimate or otherwise, but the basics seem reliable. Ashara became pregnant with a child from an affair at Harrenhal. Selmy thinks the child was stillborn. Most smart money, as I see it, is on the "Stark" she turned to being Brandon, not Ned. I don't think Ashara was raped - that would have been a much greater scandal, and Brandon would likely not have made it out of Harrenhal alive. Certainly, the relationship we see between Barristan and Ned in the books show nothing of any animosity between the two from misbehavior by Ned. Selmy even goes so far as to vouch for the dead Ned Stark to Daenerys as she rages against "Starks and Lannisters." But something happened between one of the Starks and Ashara. How did Barristan find out about the stillborn child? He loved her and would have followed any news of her that got back to King's Landing. We don't know just when Elia and her company are summoned back to court, but we do know it is after the new year of 282 because Elia and Aegon are on Dragonstone. Was Ashara with them and with child when they come back? We don't know. We do know she leaves her station and returns to Dorne where she is supposed to have had the stillborn daughter. But Martin has made it clear Ashara wasn't "nailed to the floor" in Dorne. We just know she is in Starfall when Ned arrives, or more accurately, before Ned leaves that city. Ashara's story is one that begs for more information. I'm guessing we find out a lot more because what she did during all this time and possibly later is critical to our story.