Syri0_F0rel Posted February 9, 2014 Share Posted February 9, 2014 Bran Stark – A Self Fulfilling Prophecy (Content below includes content through A Dance with Dragons) In this post I consider the connections between Bran Stark and Bran the Builder Considerations1) Bran the Builders projects2) Bran Starks advanced knowledge of Winterfell3) How trees see time4) Knowledge in the weirwoods5) Communicating through the weirwoods6) Reincarnation or self fulfilling prophecy 7) What Eddard Stark knows8) "But in time you will see beyond the trees themselves" 1st Consideration: Bran the Builder built The Wall and Storm’s End with Magic. Bran the Builder built Storm’s End and Winterfell under the watchful eyes of heart trees. At least two of the locations, the Wall and Storm's End have magical protection spells. Bran the Builder built Winterfell around the heart tree under the trees watchful eye.“At the center of the grove an ancient weirwood brooded over a small pool where the waters were black and cold. “The heart tree,” Ned called it. The weirwood’s bark was white as bone, its leaves dark red, like a thousand bloodstained hands. A face had been carved in the trunk of the great tree, its features long and melancholy, the deep-cut eyes red with dried sap and strangely watchful. They were old, those eyes; older than Winterfell itself. They had seen Brandon the Builder set the first stone, if the tales were true; they had watched the castle’s granite walls rise around them.” Game of Thrones Chapter 2 Catelyn 1 Bran the Builder uses magic in his construction of the wall. Cold Hands cannot pass the wall, wargs cannot slip into animals on an opposite side of the wall. The other known magical location is Storm’s end. Malisandre needed Davos to smuggle her into storms end since her shadow assassin could not breach the parameter of the walls.“There was no need,” she said. “He was unprotected. But here... this Storm’s End is an old place. There are spells woven into the stones. Dark walls that no shadow can pass-ancient, forgotten, yet still in place.” Clash of Kings Chapter 42 Davos 2 It is rumored that Bran the Builder instructed Durran on the construction of Storm’s End.“Five more castles he built, each larger and stronger than the last, only to see them smashed asunder when the gale winds came howling up Shipbreaker Bay, driving great walls of water before them. His lords pleaded with him to build inland; his priests told him he must placate the gods by giving Elenei back to the sea; even his smallfolk begged him to relent. Durran would have none of it. A seventh castle he raised, most massive of all. Some said the children of the forest helped him build it, shaping the stones with magic; others claimed that a small boy told him what he must do, a boy who would grow to be Bran the Builder. No matter how the tale was told, the end was the same. Though the angry gods threw storm after storm against it, the seventh castle stood defiant, and Durran Godsgrief and fair Elenei dwelt there together until the end of their days.” Clash of Kings Chapter 31 Catelyn 3 Conclusion: Bran the Builder built the Wall, built Winterfell and Storm’s End. Storm’s End and Winterfell have/had heart trees. It is not made clear if Bran the Builder was physically present as he instructed Duran. 2nd Consideration: Bran Stark knows more about Winterfell than anyone at the young age of seven. Bran knew about a secret access point from outside of Winterfell’s 2nd Wall to the inside. Bran knew every stone of Winterfell and its topography. “To a boy, Winterfell was a grey stone labyrinth of walls and towers and courtyards and tunnels spreading out in all directions. In the older parts of the castle, the halls slanted up and down so that you couldn’t even be sure what floor you were on. The place had grown over the centuries like some monstrous stone tree, Maester Luwin told him once, and its branches were gnarled and thick and twisted, its roots sunk deep into the earth. When he got out from under it and scrambled up near the sky, Bran could see all of Winterfell in a glance. He liked the way it looked, spread out beneath him, only birds wheeling over his head while all the life of the castle went on below. Bran could perch for hours among the shapeless, rain-worn gargoyles that brooded over the First Keep, watching it all: the men drilling with wood and steel in the yard, the cooks tending their vegetables in the glass garden, restless dogs running back and forth in the kennels, the silence of the godswood, the girls gossiping beside the washing well. It made him feel like he was lord of the castle, in a way even Robb would never know. It taught him Winterfell’s secrets too. The builders had not even leveled the earth; there were hills and valleys behind the walls of Winterfell. There was a covered bridge that went from the fourth floor of the bell tower across to the second floor of the rookery. Bran knew about that. And he knew you could get inside the inner wall by the south gate, climb three floors and run all the way around Winterfell through a narrow tunnel in the stone, and then come out on ground level at the north gate, with a hundred feet of wall looming over you. Even Maester Luwin didn’t know that, Bran was convinced.” Game of Thrones Chapter 8 Bran 2 “The boy had always been surehanded in the past,” Maester Luwin said thoughtfully. “He knew every stone in Winterfell.” Game of Thrones Chapter 14 Catelyn 3 3rd Consideration: Can an exploring child know a massive and complicated castle that well or did he through some device construct the castle? Is it possible for Bran to communicate with people through the weirwoods defying physical concepts of time and space? We know weirwoods do not see like men, they can see past present and future at all times. “For the oak recalls the acorn, the acorn dreams the oak, the stump lives in them both. And they remember when the First Men came with fire in their fists.” –Ghost of High Heart Storm of Swords Chapter 43 Arya 8 “Time is different for a tree than for a man. Sun and soil and water, these are the things a weirwood understands, not days and years and centuries. For men, time is a river. We are trapped in its flow, hurtling from past to present, always in the same direction. The lives of trees are different. They root and grow and die in one place, and that river does not move them. The oak is the acorn, the acorn is the oak. And the weirwood … a thousand human years are a moment to a weirwood, and through such gates you and I may gaze into the past.” – The Three Eyed Crow Dance With Dragons Chapter 34 Bran 3 Consideration 4: Access to the weirwood trees means access to ancients magics of the 1st men and Children of the Forest:“A reader lives a thousand lives before he dies,” said Jojen. “The man who never reads lives only one. The singers of the forest had no books. No ink, no parchment, no written language. Instead they had the trees, and the weirwoods above all. When they died, they went into the wood, into leaf and limb and root, and the trees remembered. All their songs and spells, their histories and prayers, everything they knew about this world. Maesters will tell you that the weirwoods are sacred to the old gods. The singers believe they are the old gods. When singers die they become part of that godhood.” Dance With Dragons Chapter 34 Bran 3 Consideration 5: Bran is the only person who can talk through a weirwood. Once he slips into the trees Bran has visions of the past gazing through the Winterfell heart tree to a point that possibly predates the construction of Winterfell. Interestingly, he communicates to his father Eddard Stark. “Bran closed his eyes and slipped free of his skin. Into the roots, he thought. Into the weirwood.Become the tree. For an instant he could see the cavern in its black mantle, could hear the river rushing by below. Then all at once he was back home again. Lord Eddard Stark sat upon a rock beside the deep black pool in the gods wood, the pale roots of the heart tree twisting around him like an old man’s gnarled arms. The greatsword Ice lay across Lord Eddard’s lap, and he was cleaning the blade with an oilcloth. “Winterfell,” Bran whispered.His father looked up. “Who’s there?” he asked, turning … … and Bran, frightened, pulled away.His father and the black pool and the godswood faded and were gone and he was back in the cavern, the pale thick roots of his weirwood throne cradling his limbs as a mother does a child. A torch flared to life before him.” and “Father.” Bran’s voice was a whisper in the wind, a rustle in the leaves. “Father, it’s me. It’sBran. Brandon.” Eddard Stark lifted his head and looked long at the weirwood, frowning, but he did not speak. He cannot see me, Bran realized, despairing. He wanted to reach out and touch him, but all that he could do was watch and listen. I am in the tree. I am inside the heart tree, looking out of its red eyes, but the weirwood cannot talk, so I can’t. Eddard Stark resumed his prayer. Bran felt his eyes fill up with tears. But were they his own tears, or the weirwood’s? If I cry, will the tree begin to weep? and “But,” said Bran, “he heard me.”“He heard a whisper on the wind, a rustling amongst the leaves. You cannot speak to him, try as you might. I know. I have my own ghosts, Bran. A brother that I loved, a brother that I hated, a woman I desired. Through the trees, I see them still, but no word of mine has ever reached them. The past remains the past. We can learn from it, but we cannot change it.” Dance With Dragons Chapter 34 Bran 3 The Three Eyed Crow insists people in the past cannot hear the greenseers in the trees. And that the past cannot be changed. Bran is certain his father heard him. The Three Eyed Crow denies Eddard hears a voice, but instead a whisper on the wind. But does a whisper in the wind under a leafed weirwood usually warrant a “Who’s there?” or a long stare into the trees face? It seems as if it is more than a whisper to Eddard and possibly the reason Eddard spends so much time at the tree. It is also possible that Bran communicates with Theon through a weirwood although Theon is half mad and there is no Bran POV chapter to confirm it:The night was windless, the snow drifting straight down out of a cold black sky, yet the leaves of the heart tree were rustling his name. “Theon,” they seemed to whisper, “Theon.” The old gods, he thought. They know me. They know my name. I was Theon of House Greyjoy. I was a ward of Eddard Stark, a friend and brother to his children. “Please.” He fell to his knees. “A sword, that’s all I ask. Let me die as Theon, not as Reek.” Tears trickled down his cheeks, impossibly warm. “I was ironborn. A son … a son of Pyke, of the islands.” A leaf drifted down from above, brushed his brow, and landed in the pool. It floated on the water, red, five-fingered, like a bloody hand. “… Bran,” the tree murmured. They know. The gods know. They saw what I did. And for one strange moment it seemed as if it were Bran’s face carved into the pale trunk of the weirwood, staring down at him with eyes red andwise and sad. Bran’s ghost, he thought, but that was madness. Why should Bran want to haunt him? He had been fond of the boy, had never done him any harm. It was not Bran we killed. It was not Rickon.They were only miller’s sons, from the mill by the Acorn Water. “I had to have two heads, else they would have mocked me … laughed at me … they …” A voice said, “Who are you talking to?” Theon spun, terrified that Ramsay had found him, but it was just the washerwomen—Holly, Rowan, and one whose name he did not know. “The ghosts,” he blurted. “They whisper to me. They … they know my name.” A Dance With Dragons Chapter 41 the Ghost in Winterfell The Three Eyed Crow claims that 1) People cannot hear Bran through the tree and 2) Bran cannot change the past. I will agree with 2 and disagreeing with 1. Eddard and Theon are hearing more than whispers in the wind. It is possible that Bran is above the class of greenseer and can actually speak through the trees. On 2, if we are dealing with a self-fulfilling prophecy then there is no changing of the past, events are going as planned. Consideration 6: Bran Stark is Bran the Builder reincarnated and may have existed as other Bran Starks. Bran Stark instructed his physical self, Bran the Builder, how to construct Strorm’s End, Winterfell and the Wall by speaking through the weirwoods faces. Old Nan has, through old age or wisdom, come to believe that all the Brandon Starks are one person.Thousands and thousands of years ago, Brandon the Builder had raised Winterfell, and some said the Wall. Bran knew the story, but it had never been his favorite. Maybe one of the other Brandons had liked that story. Sometimes Nan would talk to him as if he were her Brandon, the baby she had nursed all those years ago, and sometimes she confused him with his uncle Brandon, who was killed by the Mad King before Bran was even born. She had lived so long, Mother had told him once, that all the Brandon Starks had become one person in her head. Game of Thrones Chapter 24 Bran 4 Ned tells Arya that Bran may one day build castles like Bran the Builder or sail the Sunset Sea (not mentioning that Brandon Stark the Shipwright sailed the Sunset Sea).“No,” Ned said. He saw no use in lying to her. “Yet someday he may be the lord of a great holdfast and sit on the king’s council. He might raise castles like Brandon the Builder, or sail a ship across the Sunset Sea, or enter your mother’s Faith and become the High Septon.” But he will never run beside his wolf again, he thought with a sadness too deep for words, or lie with a woman, or hold his own son in his arms. Game of Thrones Chapter 25 Eddard 5 Consideration 7: I wonder why Bran cannot lay with a woman or hold a son. Did the fall destroy his ability to reproduce? Or does Eddard sub-consciously know of Brans fate as a greenseer through his time spent at the heart tree? Final consideration: this analysis has created far more questions than answers. I have been so busy fathoming the possibilities of seeing through the weirwoods than considering the most mysterious of the Three Eye Crows comments:“The singers carved eyes into their heart trees to awaken them, and those are the first eyes a new greenseer learns to use …but in time you will see well beyond the trees themselves.” Dance With Dragons Chapter 34 Bran 3 Later additions brought up in the thread “Syrio says a water dancer never falls.” She lowered her leg to stand on two feet. “Father, will Bran come and live with us now?”“Not for a long time, sweet one,” he told her. “He needs to win his strength back.”Arya bit her lip. “What will Bran do when he’s of age?”Ned knelt beside her. “He has years to find that answer, Arya. For now, it is enough to know that he will live.” The night the bird had come from Winterfell, Eddard Stark had taken the girls to the castle godswood, an acre of elm and alder and black cottonwood overlooking the river. The heart tree there was a great oak, its ancient limbs overgrown with smokeberry vines; they knelt before it to offer their thanksgiving, as if it had been a weirwood. Sansa drifted to sleep as the moon rose, Arya several hours later, curling up in the grass under Ned’s cloak. All through the dark hours he kept his vigil alone. When dawn broke over the city, the dark red blooms of dragon’s breath surrounded the girls where they lay. “I dreamed of Bran,” Sansa had whispered to him. “I saw him smiling.”“He was going to be a knight,” Arya was saying now. “A knight of the Kingsguard. Can he still be a knight?”“No,” Ned said. He saw no use in lying to her. “Yet someday he may be the lord of a great holdfast and sit on the king’s council. He might raise castles like Brandon the Builder, or sail a ship across the Sunset Sea, or enter your mother’s Faith and become the High Septon.” But he will never run beside his wolf again, he thought with a sadness too deep for words, or lie with a woman, or hold his own son in his arms.-Game of Thrones Chapter 25 - Eddard V There is the chance Bran had nothing to do with Sansa's dream. She may have dreamed of him simply because she just heard the news he was awake, or she may have dreamed of him because he used his greenseer abilities to contact, but not verbally communicate with, Sansa. This does not add evidence to then Bran Self-Fulfilling prohecy theory but it is more evidence of possible greenseeing before meeting the three-eyed crow. When he closed his eyes, he dreamed of direwolves. There were five of them when there should have been six, and they were scattered, each apart from the others. He felt a deep ache of emptiness, a sense of incompleteness. The forest was vast and cold, and they were so small, so lost. His brothers were out there somewhere, and his sister, but he had lost their scent. He sat on his haunches and lifted his head to the darkening sky, and his cry echoed through the forest, a long lonely mournful sound. As it died away, he pricked up his ears, listening for an answer, but the only sound was the sigh of blowing snow. Jon? The call came from behind him, softer than a whisper, but strong too. Can a shout be silent? He turned his head, searching for his brother, for a glimpse of a lean grey shape moving beneath the trees, but there was nothing, only... A weirwood.It seemed to sprout from solid rock, its pale roots twisting up from a myriad of fissures and hairline cracks. The tree was slender compared to other weirwoods he had seen, no more than a sapling, yet it was growing as he watched, its limbs thickening as they reached for the sky. Wary, he circled the smooth white trunk until he came to the face. Red eyes looked at him. Fierce eyes they were, yet glad to see him. The weirwood had his brother’s face. Had his brother always had three eyes? Not always, came the silent shout. Not before the crow.He sniffed at the bark, smelled wolf and tree and boy, but behind that there were other scents, the rich brown smell of warm earth and the hard grey smell of stone and something else, something terrible. Death, he knew. He was smelling death. He cringed back, his hair bristling, and bared his fangs.Don’t be afraid, I like it in the dark. No one can see you, but you can see them. But first you have to open your eyes. See? Like this. And the tree reached down and touched him.And suddenly he was back in the mountains, his paws sunk deep in a drift of snow as he stood upon the edge of a great precipice. Before him the Skirling Pass opened up into airy emptiness, and a long vee-shaped valley lay spread beneath him like a quilt, awash in all the colors of an autumn afternoon.A vast blue-white wall plugged one end of the vale, squeezing between the mountains as if it had shouldered them aside, and for a moment he thought he had dreamed himself back to Castle Black. Then he realized he was looking at a river of ice several thousand feet high. Under that glittering cold cliff was a great lake, its deep cobalt waters reflecting the snowcapped peaks... A Clash of Kings Chapter 53 Jon There is some significant stuff going on here and what I type below is an unorganized mess of thoughts and questions:Jon is having a wolf dream through the perspective of Ghost. What is strange is that during the dream he jumps from this baby weirwood to a different location in the mountains. Communication - Ghost is listening for the other direwolves but hears a silent shout in the sigh of blowing wind... without quotations there is a - Jon?It seems Bran is asking if Jon is in Ghost. Warged Ghost looks for his brother but not Bran, the grey direwolf. It seems like split souls of Ghost/Jon are confusing the appearance of their brother, Jon thinking, 'my brother...' and Ghost looking for his wolf brother. Ghost discoverers a weirwood growing before his very eyes and on it Bran's face with three eyes and happy to see him. When he wonders if Bran always had three eyes the silent shout replies without quotations: not always, not before the crow. Ghost smells the tree and picks out: Wolf (Summer) Tree (weirwood) and Boy (Bran) and behind was warm earth, stone and death - reminding me of the cave and Brynden River's corpse infused with a weirwood. But we know that at this time in the books, Bran is hiding in the crypts while Theon hunts for him in the Wolfwood. Maybe the the earth, stone and death is just the crypts. Ghost is threatened by the smell of death but the silent shout (Bran) tells him to not be afraid of the dark and to open his third eye. The weirwood touches Ghost's face, and poof - Jon is in full warg mode scouting Mance's host. Was it at this point Jon realizes and starts using his warg ability with control? What I gather is: Bran is talking to Ghost/Jon in the wolf dream. Is Jon warged in Ghost and Ghost actually seeing/hearing this in real time or is it really just a dream?It is odd the dialogue is not in quotes and is described as a silent shout. When Bran was warged in Summer sniffing at the Reed's, wolf heard the Reed's speak with quoted dialogue. If this is really happening, It is wild that a weirwood can grow from nowhere and show Bran's face. The 'Don't be afraid, I like it in the dark." is reminiscent to the Three Eyed Crow saying to Bran, "The strongest trees are rooted in the dark places of the earth. Darkness will be your cloak, your shield, your mother's milk. Darkness will make you strong." But at this point, the Three Eyed Crow has not taught Bran that so either it is Bran in the future or Bran is legit content warging and seeing from the crypts. But Bran is only warging, he does not have the ability/traning to communicate through dreams Does 'not before the crow' mean before the crow appeared to him during the coma or before Bran arrived at the cave and became his pupil? Is it possible that the Bran communicating in the wolf dream is Bran in the future already in the cave? Or is this Bran communicating in the dream from his current location in the crypts?or is this all just a dream and a giant coincidence? Was the new weirwood Brienne saw in Feast for Crows sprouted under a similar circumstance? It is also a coincidence Jon felt Bran was happy to see him just as Sansa did during her dream at the heart tree in King's Landing. Looking at another thread wondering if this was a future Bran the idea was shot down by all posters. Text stating it was real time: Quote Was it any wonder he would sooner dream his Summer dreams, his wolf dreams? Here in the chill damp darkness of the tomb his third eye had finally opened. He could reach Summer whenever he wanted, and once he had even touched Ghost and talked to Jon. Though maybe he had only dreamed that. Another posted linked a reddit questions about Jon finding Ghost. Jon heard something that led him back to Ghost but Ghost is mute, so what did Jon hear? Halfway across the bridge, Jon pulled up suddenly."What is it, Jon?" their lord father asked."Can't you hear it?"Bran could hear the wind in the trees, the clatter of their hooves on the ironwood planks, the whimpering of his hungry pup, but Jon was listening to something else."There," Jon said. He swung his horse around and galloped back across the bridge. They watched him dismount where the direwolf lay dead in the snow, watched him kneel. A moment later he was riding back to them smiling. The Language of the Children: the World of Ice and Fire book: Bran the Builder was taken to a secret place to meet with them (The Children of the Forrest) but could not at first understand their speech, which was described as sounding like the song of stones in a brook, or the wind through the leaves, or the rain upon the water. The manner in which Brandon learned to comprehend the speech of the children is a tale in itself, and not worth repeating here. The language of the Children of the Forrest can sound like wind in the leaves, which we have heard mentioned before at the weirwoods. How Brandon learned it is a 'tale in itself'... why not share the tale? Because it would reveal too much about what is going on with Bran Stark now. The night was windless, the snow drifting straight down out of a cold black sky, yet the leaves of the heart tree were rustling his name. “Theon,” they seemed to whisper, “Theon.” The old gods, he thought. They know me. They know my name. I was Theon of House Greyjoy. I was a ward of Eddard Stark, a friend and brother to his children. “Please.” He fell to his knees. “A sword, that’s all I ask. Let me die as Theon, not as Reek.” Tears trickled down his cheeks, impossibly warm. “I was ironborn. A son … a son of Pyke, of the islands.” A leaf drifted down from above, brushed his brow, and landed in the pool. It floated on the water, red, five-fingered, like a bloody hand. “… Bran,” the tree murmured. They know. The gods know. They saw what I did. And for one strange moment it seemed as if it were Bran’s face carved into the pale trunk of the weirwood, staring down at him with eyes red andwise and sad. Bran’s ghost, he thought, but that was madness. Why should Bran want to haunt him? He had been fond of the boy, had never done him any harm. It was not Bran we killed. It was not Rickon.They were only miller’s sons, from the mill by the Acorn Water. “I had to have two heads, else they would have mocked me … laughed at me … they …” A voice said, “Who are you talking to?” Theon spun, terrified that Ramsay had found him, but it was just the washerwomen—Holly, Rowan, and one whose name he did not know. “The ghosts,” he blurted. “They whisper to me. They … they know my name.” Dance of Dragons Chapter 46 The Ghost in Winterfell The world book leads me to believe the rustling of the wind is the language of the Children of the Forrest and Bran really is contacting Theon. Summer lapped at the water and settled down at Bran’s side. He rubbed the wolf under the jaw, and for a moment boy and beast both felt at peace. Bran had always liked the godswood, even before, but of late he found himself drawn to it more and more. Even the heart tree no longer scared him the way it used to. The deep red eyes carved into the pale trunk still watched him, yet somehow he took comfort from that now. The gods were looking over him, he told himself; the old gods, gods of the Starks and the First Men and the children of the forest, his father’s gods. He felt safe in their sight, and the deep silence of the trees helped him think. Bran had been thinking a lot since his fall; thinking, and dreaming, and talking with the gods. Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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