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Volantene Republican Army

No children in Asshai

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There's the theory about the oily/greasy black stone structures built by mermen/ 'deep ones', spread over Planetos (http://www.reddit.com/r/asoiaf/comments/2kn8vc/spoilers_woiaf_the_oily_black_stone_structures) that has basically been confirmed by Elio Garcia (http://www.reddit.com/r/asoiaf/comments/2kxjol/spoilers_woiaf_hey_anyone_who_owns_awoiaf_i_have/)

So at least in one of these places where there is an abundance of the black stone, Yeen, plants cannot grow.

No confirmation whether there are trees in Asshai or not, but if large quantities of the stone prevent living things from growing, perhaps it could be the reason why there are no children in Asshai.

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The Shadow over Innsmouth? There are no elderly in the town because they are half breed frog men. When they age, they change, and return to the sea.



Maybe babies in Asshai are different, not recognizably human.


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I think it's best to just take the words for what they are.



This is a PROFOUNDLY messed up place.



And something about it prevents children from living there.



They might eat/sacrifice/burn them all or they die when they enter.



Whatever the case, this is just a simple way of saying, "This is evil, unnatural, and wrong."


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Well, I guess there are two possibilities:



1) For some magical reason children simply cannot exist in Asshai



2) Children in Asshai are not allowed to leave their houses, as some sorcerer could snatch them away and use them for some weird ritual.


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“You’d best not take any food or drink at Coldmoat, ser. The Red Widow poisoned all her husbands.”


“I’m not like to marry her. She’s a highborn lady, and I’m Dunk of Flea Bottom, remember?” He frowned. “Just how many husbands has she had, do you know?”


“Four,” said Egg, “but no children. Whenever she gives birth, a demon comes by night to carry off the issue. Sam Stoops’ wife says she sold her babes unborn to the Lord of the Seven Hells, so he’d teach her his black arts.”


“Highborn ladies don’t meddle with the black arts. They dance and sing and do embroidery.”


“Maybe she dances with demons and embroiders evil spells,” Egg said with relish. “And how would you know what highborn ladies do, ser? Lady Vaith is the only one you ever knew.”


That was insolent, but true. “Might be I don’t know any highborn ladies, but I know a boy who’s asking for a good clout in the ear.” Dunk rubbed the back of his neck. A day in chainmail always left it hard as wood. “You’ve known queens and princesses. Did they dance with demons and practice the black arts?”


“Lady Shiera does. Lord Bloodraven’s paramour. She bathes in blood to keep her beauty. And once my sister Rhae put a love potion in my drink, so I’d marry her instead of my sister Daella.”


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2) Children in Asshai are not allowed to leave their houses, as some sorcerer could snatch them away and use them for some weird ritual.

Nothing is forbidden in Asshai. Does it mean that robbing and killing merchants bringing food to Asshai is also not forbidden?

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"Nothing forbidden" is more about magic, necromancy and that kind of things, than about murders and robbing . If realy everything was legal in Asshai , the city won't be inhabited for long. Who would like to live in place where you can legally be murdered?

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"Nothing forbidden" is more about magic, necromancy and that kind of things, than about murders and robbing . If realy everything was legal in Asshai , the city won't be inhabited for long. Who would like to live in place where you can legally be murdered?

Agree.

But who rules this city O.O

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“You’d best not take any food or drink at Coldmoat, ser. The Red Widow poisoned all her husbands.”

“I’m not like to marry her. She’s a highborn lady, and I’m Dunk of Flea Bottom, remember?” He frowned. “Just how many husbands has she had, do you know?”

“Four,” said Egg, “but no children. Whenever she gives birth, a demon comes by night to carry off the issue. Sam Stoops’ wife says she sold her babes unborn to the Lord of the Seven Hells, so he’d teach her his black arts.”

“Highborn ladies don’t meddle with the black arts. They dance and sing and do embroidery.”

“Maybe she dances with demons and embroiders evil spells,” Egg said with relish. “And how would you know what highborn ladies do, ser? Lady Vaith is the only one you ever knew.”

That was insolent, but true. “Might be I don’t know any highborn ladies, but I know a boy who’s asking for a good clout in the ear.” Dunk rubbed the back of his neck. A day in chainmail always left it hard as wood. “You’ve known queens and princesses. Did they dance with demons and practice the black arts?”

“Lady Shiera does. Lord Bloodraven’s paramour. She bathes in blood to keep her beauty. And once my sister Rhae put a love potion in my drink, so I’d marry her instead of my sister Daella.”

I love that conversation more than any other in probably the whole of A Song of Ice and Fire.

Why?

Because I keep reading it and it occurs to me, I don't know who is right.

Westeros is just THAT strange of a place.

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I love that conversation more than any other in probably the whole of A Song of Ice and Fire.

Why?

Because I keep reading it and it occurs to me, I don't know who is right.

Westeros is just THAT strange of a place.

This is not the only example of such quotes.

No one ever explained those two days the fool had been lost in the sea. The fisherfolk liked to say a mermaid had taught him to breathe water in return for his seed. Patchface himself had said nothing.

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I always thought it was because the oily black stone was radioactive and thus sterilized the inhabitants

Hightower is oily black stone, too.

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I always thought it was because the oily black stone was radioactive and thus sterilized the inhabitants

If so, House Greyjoy should be long extinct.

Nothing is forbidden in Asshai. Does it mean that robbing and killing merchants bringing food to Asshai is also not forbidden?

It doesn't necessarily have to be a law that children cannot leave their houses. Could be the parents simply don't let them out until they reached a certain age.

This whole "No children in Asshai" is extremely confusing. I really want some story that takes place in Asshai.

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Hightower is oily black stone, too.

I think the base of Hightower is actually just fused and black, not oily.

If so, House Greyjoy should be long extinct.

While I don't agree with the whole "black stone is radioactive" theory, you could chalk this one up to it not being radioactive enough for a chair of it to sterilize someone, but an entire city built of it could be.

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Youd best not take any food or drink at Coldmoat, ser. The Red Widow poisoned all her husbands.

Im not like to marry her. Shes a highborn lady, and Im Dunk of Flea Bottom, remember? He frowned. Just how many husbands has she had, do you know?

Four, said Egg, but no children. Whenever she gives birth, a demon comes by night to carry off the issue. Sam Stoops wife says she sold her babes unborn to the Lord of the Seven Hells, so hed teach her his black arts.

Highborn ladies dont meddle with the black arts. They dance and sing and do embroidery.

Maybe she dances with demons and embroiders evil spells, Egg said with relish. And how would you know what highborn ladies do, ser? Lady Vaith is the only one you ever knew.

That was insolent, but true. Might be I dont know any highborn ladies, but I know a boy whos asking for a good clout in the ear. Dunk rubbed the back of his neck. A day in chainmail always left it hard as wood. Youve known queens and princesses. Did they dance with demons and practice the black arts?

Lady Shiera does. Lord Bloodravens paramour. She bathes in blood to keep her beauty. And once my sister Rhae put a love potion in my drink, so Id marry her instead of my sister Daella.

Going off at a tangent, I wonder if Lady Rohanne's sudden disappearance had anything to do with her alleged fondness for the dark arts. Maybe a spell went wrong and killed her; or maybe she gave some entity a claim on her soul, in return for becoming Lady of Casterly Rock.

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Something that jumped out to me concerning Asshai is that it doesn't seem to be a place people are born and raised. It is not a city in the sense that men or women inhabit it from cradle to grave, going to shops, having friends, being ruled by a lord or a mayor or something. It seems more like a place that people just... go to. There are no children because no one is born there, but rather they hear about it from another place, they hear about the mystery and darkness, and then they wonder about what it is.



Asshai is a huge city, but with no people. I think that the idea that children cannot be born there due to some magical interference is almost certainly the case: in the past, some magical calamity happened that rendered the once great city completely intolerable to life. Animals die, plants die, children die. It seems to me that the original builders of the city, probably the Deep Ones or some other pre-human race, were involved in some kind of catastrophic war in the distant past - the mazemakers were wiped out by life that came from the sea, and then the Deep Ones themselves were driven off land by something else. The stone itself is not dangerous on its own: if it were, then places like the Five Forts, Pyke, and the Isle of Toads would be uninhabitable as well. The taint must have been brought onto it by something else - a result of war seems reasonable. In the process of this war, Asshai was hit with some kind of disaster - something akin to magical radiation - that not only massively depopulated the city but made it noxious, toxic, and incapable of sustaining life. A similar process happened in Yeen.



So no one is born in Asshai. Why, then, are there people there? It makes sense to me that they are "called" in a certain sense. Some are brought as slaves, as shown by Melisandre, but I think it likely that the magical nature of Asshai causes certain people to just gravitate towards it. Asshai issues some kind of "pull" to those involved in the dark arts, and they flock to it to learn more, drawing them further and further into the Shadow. I think that the magical nature of Asshai prevents children from being born, but also causes it to be filled with people: the sorcerers, the shadow-binders, the dancers in the dark. It doesn't seem like a place that is "ruled" by anyone: it just is and the people there simply are, without any regard for one another. The magic causes life to die, but it also sustains the people who it calls - Melisandre, having lived in Asshai for much of her life, requires little to no food to live. It's a nightmare city, no doubt, at the very edge of sense and sanity, so unnatural and evil that the very land around it is completely poisonous.



And yet... there are always people there.


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It could also be that it's all bullshit. Yandel do not really have any good sources on Asshai.

He does. Archmaester Marwyn spent some time there.

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I only skimmed this one while working so I'm sorry if I'm just parroting someone else.



In a place like Asshai where magic is practiced without boundaries, children would be prime candidates for blood-magic sacrifices. Just a gut feeling.

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