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[TWOW SPOILERS] March 2014 Preview Chapter Part IV

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It's play, thus just like the book, characters can be a combination of people. Mercy's character is likely an amalgamation of aspects of Sansa and Shae


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I'm not in favor of her going back to the Riverlands (another travelogue) and going back to kill irrelevant characters. I think this chapter shows the start of a new Arya. She knew killing Raff would cause problems. This is a step in the right direction.

They're not irrelevant. The Brotherhood Without Banners is exactly the kind of insurgency that could destabilize and overthrow Frey rule in the Riverlands. Combined with the merciless Lady Stoneheart and Nymeria's mega wolf pack, the Freys are facing a real threat.

Besides, Lady Stoneheart is also now in control of two POV characters - Jaime and Brienne.

I have no idea if Lady Stoneheart and Arya are related at all, but I do know that Lady Stoneheart is not irrelevant.

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His ships are at eastwatch

No they are wrecked off of the coast at Hardhome....wasn't that the last message JS received all 11 ships lost...

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I had assumed that the ships that went to hardhome were from the watch. Why would a rep of the Iron bank strand himself at the edge of the world?


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I had assumed that the ships that went to hardhome were from the watch. Why would a rep of the Iron bank strand himself at the edge of the world?

No, there were the three NW ships, 5 Lyseni and 3 Braavos (which I assume were Tycho's)

Jon is speaking with Mel (after the Selsye debacle)

Mel..."Your ships are lost"

Jon..."Six remain. More than half the fleet."

Mel..."Your ships are lost. ALL of them. Not a man shall return. I have seen that in my fires"

Jon..."Your fires have been known to lie."

Mel..."I have made mistake, I have admitted as much, but--"

I'm taking Mel's word for itthat the fleet is lost...

As far as Tycho lending his ships and stranding himself...I would expect that the Iron Bank has an open contract with any Braavosi vessel to allow an Iron Bank agent boarding privileges and course changes as necessary...

Edited by Gerg Sknab

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No, there were the three NW ships, 5 Lyseni and 3 Braavos (which I assume were Tycho's)

Jon is speaking with Mel (after the Selsye debacle)

Mel..."Your ships are lost"

Jon..."Six remain. More than half the fleet."

Mel..."Your ships are lost. ALL of them. Not a man shall return. I have seen that in my fires"

Jon..."Your fires have been known to lie."

Mel..."I have made mistake, I have admitted as much, but--"

I'm taking Mel's word for itthat the fleet is lost...

As far as Tycho lending his ships and stranding himself...I would expect that the Iron Bank has an open contract with any Braavosi vessel to allow an Iron Bank agent boarding privileges and course changes as necessary...

Mel has reason to lie to Jon though, and I think she's about as trustworthy as Baelish...

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Mel has reason to lie to Jon though, and I think she's about as trustworthy as Baelish...

Why? She has been bending over to attempt to gain JS's trust, knowingly poffering false prophecy does nothing to get on the inside...

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No, there were the three NW ships, 5 Lyseni and 3 Braavos (which I assume were Tycho's)

Jon is speaking with Mel (after the Selsye debacle)

Mel..."Your ships are lost"

Jon..."Six remain. More than half the fleet."

Mel..."Your ships are lost. ALL of them. Not a man shall return. I have seen that in my fires"

Jon..."Your fires have been known to lie."

Mel..."I have made mistake, I have admitted as much, but--"

I'm taking Mel's word for itthat the fleet is lost...

As far as Tycho lending his ships and stranding himself...I would expect that the Iron Bank has an open contract with any Braavosi vessel to allow an Iron Bank agent boarding privileges and course changes as necessary...

So no ships are lost then

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So no ships are lost then

At the very least 6 ships are lost, and if 6 were lost before they even got there, it isnt unreasonable to think more will be lost on the return journey and rescuing the Wildlings. Even if this were not the case, the fact remains that there are no ships to be had at Eastwatch, as they were allbsent to Hardhome. Even if they aren't all wrecked, they are still there

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At the very least 6 ships are lost, and if 6 were lost before they even got there, it isnt unreasonable to think more will be lost on the return journey and rescuing the Wildlings. Even if this were not the case, the fact remains that there are no ships to be had at Eastwatch, as they were allbsent to Hardhome. Even if they aren't all wrecked, they are still there

Eastwatch appears to be a fairly busy trading port

There will be more ships along

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Eastwatch appears to be a fairly busy trading port

There will be more ships along

Well there is that fourth ship unaccounted for, you know, the fleet of four Braavosi ships Davos saw when he was at White Harbour and seemingly three turned up at Eastwatch....

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A theme I appreciate in the Mercy chapter is the idea that history relies on the author. That idea was evident in Shakespeare's plays and sonnets and has been a common theme throughout ASoIaF.



The play within a play in the Mercy chapter was a history written with the ruling Lannisters in mind much like Shakespeare's plays were written for the king. The facts and details are less important than pleasing the powers that be and the audience. Like Shakespeare commented, while he may die, his works will live on forever. In the world of Westeros, this is also true. Songs, plays, stories, and the writings by the literate few all live on.



I think the play is sort of an obvious example and metaphor of the history of Westeros which has been recorded throughout thousands of years by singers, unreliable word of mouth (telephone game, anyone?) and the literate few with less regard for facts and details than for the audience and rulers of the time who have often won their power through combat victories. The victors become heroes, the losers villains. The atrocities of war become the forgotten details.



I know that others have commented on this idea when describing the recent history of Westeros between Robert's Rebellion and AGoT. The main idea being that perhaps the rebels weren't as heroic and "good" as the biased viewpoint characters lead us to believe. Maybe Aerys wasn't as mad or "evil" as has been suggested. Again, there are posts out there (that I found excellent) that go into more detail about this.



The songs Sansa has heard, the histories Tyrion reads, Old Nan's tall tales (the Night's King and the Rat Cook stand out), the Raines of Castamere, Robert's letter proclaiming Ned protector of the realm (written by Ned with a notable alteration), the pink letter, really any written, sung, or narrated account of most events in Westeros all seem to contain a bit of truth, but also a bit of imbellishment, a lack of detail, or an alteration. All of these histories have included the author's biases, sometimes intended and sometimes unintended.



In a nutshell, this can be said about the novels as a whole. Because of the viewpoint character format, the information we receive is biased, sometimes intentionally by the viewpoint character, and sometimes not. This is hardly an accident by GRRM, and I find it one of the most exceptional parts of the writing. The song being sung to us is a subjective one that has been altered by the biases, limited information, and setting of the viewpoint characters. We see through many eyes, so we are to some degree omniscient. But, those eyes belong to someone else, so that omniscience is limited.



Like Greenseers/Old Gods if you will (a metaphor in a metaphor)...

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It's play, thus just like the book, characters can be a combination of people. Mercy's character is likely an amalgamation of aspects of Sansa and Shae

Yes, but I think Mercy was more Shae than Sansa personality wise.

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Yes, but I think Mercy was more Shae than Sansa personality wise.

I think people do have to keep in mind that the character "Mercy" plays is something of a mockery of the person it's supposed to be; the play itself is a political tool to please the Lannister guests, so certain liberties have been taken with the characters portrayed.

If it's Shae, is it really Shae? Or the trial version of Shae - poor little maid turned into a whore by the evil Imp ? If it's Sansa, is it real Sansa? No, it's more likely the fair-seeming maid who's really the sister and daughter of a traitor, who conspires with the evil Imp to poison the good young king, before using witchcraft to turn into a winged wolf and fly away ? (In other words: Fair is foul and foul is fair.)

Edited by Pod The Impaler

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No, there were the three NW ships, 5 Lyseni and 3 Braavos (which I assume were Tycho's)

Jon is speaking with Mel (after the Selsye debacle)

Mel..."Your ships are lost"

Jon..."Six remain. More than half the fleet."

Mel..."Your ships are lost. ALL of them. Not a man shall return. I have seen that in my fires"

Jon..."Your fires have been known to lie."

Mel..."I have made mistake, I have admitted as much, but--"

I'm taking Mel's word for itthat the fleet is lost...

As far as Tycho lending his ships and stranding himself...I would expect that the Iron Bank has an open contract with any Braavosi vessel to allow an Iron Bank agent boarding privileges and course changes as necessary...

Jons story is inconsistent, at one point he states that he impressed a boat from Ibben and a trading ship from Pentos, a trading ship from Pentos could have signifigance, it could be spying on Stannis for Illryio. Later on he does seem to identify the other five ships as Lyseni. Yes Tycho did agree to lend the boats to the Watch in return for mounts and guides to get him to Stannis, so the three Bravosi ships were Tychos and none of them were reported as being lost. If I remember correctly two of the Watches ships had been sunk or run aground and three of the Lyseni ship had suffered a similar fate.

I do know this. Tycho told us that when dispatching an envoy of his magnitude, the bank always sends three boats, a cog, a galley and a galleas. That these boats are chosen to complement and aid one another so that the envoy safely arrives at his destination, its standard practice for the bank.

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