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R+L=J v.146


Ygrain

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The major problem with believing Ashara is Jon's mother comes not from the books themselves, but rather from the timeline.

But of course it does, and it has little to do with the timeline. First and foremost, having premarital sex, impregnating the woman and not marrying her ASAP to do right by her is totally and completely out of character for Ned. So is taking the baby away from his mother, so is hurting him by keeping his mother's identity from him, so is not giving Ashara a single thought. The closest it might get to admitting some guilt is a mention of old guilts on the way back from the brothel, but even here, he thinks only about Lyanna, and Rhaegar.

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I dunno. GRRM isn't supposed to do obvious, and RLJ seems to be the obvious answer from what I'm gathering over here...I think it's a trap! :)

GRRM gave subtle clues, hints and foreshadowing and acknowledged that if you're a careful reader, you will know. It's obvious to us in 2015, because it's been discussed for close to 20 years.

It's only been reinforced with more subtle clues and hints with each subsequent books.

R+L=J would die out of relevancy if readers found more hints countering its significance in the overall narrative WITH other relevant choices. Until ADWD, there is none that even comes close.

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I agree, you make good points. We don't have any records of Targ-Stark marriages, either to reference. Of course it's possible that Jon is Rhaegar and Lyanna's, but I think it's telling how descriptions of how Jon looks like Ned keeps popping up again and again. Even Crasters notices.

Also, in the brothel chapter, Ned is thinking about Rhaegar, and mentions he hasn't thought of him in years. Now if Jon was Rhaegar's son, and he sees Ned every single day, wouldn't he be a constant reminder of Rhaegar? Not something Ned would probably forget, especially if he's agonizing over a promise about Jon being the love child of Rhaegar and Lyanna.

I could actually imagine Lyanna eloping with someone more common, as Arya is compared to her, and Arya likes to hang out with the plebes.

I dunno. GRRM isn't supposed to do obvious, and RLJ seems to be the obvious answer from what I'm gathering over here...I think it's a trap! :)

1. Agree that Jon could be Ned's--more than enough wiggle room in the timelines. But Jon's looks aren't determinative especially in context with Jon's "siblings." Especially re: Arya and Lyanna. And Craster notices he looks like a Stark--not like Ned--never seen Ned (as far as we know). Ned could be daddy--but the looks just ain't proof in this context.

2. Agree on the lack of thinking about Rhaegar--one of the reasons I'm more sure of Lyanna=mama than Rhaegar=daddy. But Ned's thoughts on Lyanna--which one would assume would be intense--aren't given much to the readers, either. And what we do get is more symbolic than specific arguments. Same with whoever helped Lyanna get dead--kidnapping, birth, violence, or however it happened. Lots of absences in Ned's head. Hard to pin down at this point which ones are proof of something and which aren't.

3. Agree on Lyanna's running off with someone else--Rhaegar's already being married seems like a big red flag based on the scant info we have on Lyanna. Who? My best guess would be Arthur--might go some way to explain why the Daynes and that sword keep popping up. But that is literally just a guess.

4. And agree that RLJ is not too difficult to find--completely obvious, no. Not too hard, though. I, too, prefer a twist. Currently, my favorite twist would be RLJ=yes, but NOT Jon=king. Bottom line: RLJ could be a red herring per se. But could also be a red herring per its implications.

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.... no matter who the father was.

All this talk about "why would Ned keep it a secret" when it's obvious why he's keeping it a secret... because it's kind of a secret.

Exactly... When you don't want people to know something... you don't tell it to anyone... especially someone as impulsive as Cat...

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True, but Ned doesn't know this when Jon is a baby.

Well, if we're being that nitpicking we don't know that for sure either. Maybe in Westeros they do know since the baby is borned. As I said, if Jon would look like a Targ later, he would've dealt with the problem later, I guess. In the meanwhile, what do you expect him to do, kill him? Make him disappear? He would never do such a thing to anyone, whether he looked like a Targ or not, much less if this was his sister's son and he promised her to look after him.

How do we know this was the promise? Do we even know for sure Lyanna had a baby?

No we don't but I thought we were discussing in case she indeed had a boy and that boy is Jon. We are giving reason of why we think the way we do. You of Jon not being Lyanna's boy and me that he is.

It kind of is important if the theory is that Ned made a promise to keep a baby safe that was half Targ. Treason.

See above, it is not. Ned would have no choice but to protect the boy in anycase.

So because he doesn't look like a Targ he's a Targ?

Are you kidding with me or what? LOL You suggested that because he doesn't look like a Targ then he is not a Targ. I replied that not all Targs had the same look and he's also half Stark (in case the theory is the right one obviously). So your argument about him not looking like a Targ means nothing. Besides, if this theory turns out to be correct, how do you suppose that Martin would make Jon look like a Targ and still be a secret? He can't give that away, if that's indeed the secret. As a writer he has a very good tool to use and hide that fact, his mother's looks. ;)

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I dunno. GRRM isn't supposed to do obvious, and RLJ seems to be the obvious answer from what I'm gathering over here...I think it's a trap! :)



I don't know if i would call it at 'trap', but I will say that GRRM most definitely wants all of his readership to be onboard with R+L=J & be building expectations based upon R+L=J... This cannot be denied...



GRRM usually takes the expectations of his readers & then shatters them...


  • R+L=J could be wrong
  • R+L=J could be correct, but far more complex (involving Dany &/or Aegon)
  • R+L=J could be correct, but Lyanna was an Other (or something)

I don't know which way he is going to go, but I lean toward R+L=J as being correct, but oversimplified...



One thing is certain: GRRM wants his readers to believe that Jon is the Savior who will bring balance...



but he is not going to be a savior, Jon will become the Night's King... An Antagonist rather than the Protagonists that readers long for.


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GRRM gave subtle clues, hints and foreshadowing and acknowledged that if you're a careful reader, you will know. It's obvious to us in 2015, because it's been discussed for close to 20 years.

Indeed. I didn't see it on my first reading back in about 2002, it was hardly obvious.

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One thing is certain: GRRM wants his readers to believe that Jon is the Savior who will bring balance...

but he is not going to be a savior, Jon will become the Night's King... An Antagonist rather than the Protagonists that readers long for.

Could be. I wrote this in another topic about Jon, and his possible comeback.

Martin said when speaking about death not being permanent thing:

I do think that if you're bringing a character back, that a character has gone through death, that's a transformative experience.

My characters who come back from death are worse for wear. In some ways, they're not even the same characters anymore. The body may be moving, but some aspect of the spirit is changed or transformed, and they've lost something.

http://www.maximumfu...d-young-america

I don't know what this might mean about Jon, but he certainly isn't coming back as the Jon we know now.

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They hadn't seen each other in years, it's not like they all met up for Thanksgiving every year and sent out baby photos.

Ned doesn't go out of his way to hide Jon at the welcome feast in AGoT. Cersei notices him, and Cersei certainly knew Rhaegar.

What would Robert have said? That Jon looks just like Ned?

Ned could have wanted Jon to remain in the North, and not be subjected to further harassment for being a bastard in KL. He outright says that last part.

Ned does nothing to call attention to Jon while the King is at Winterfell. In fact he does change things to hide Jon, he allows Jon to be segregated out from being with his brothers and sisters instead of being with them in their activities, as was the norm. Ostensibly this is in order to not offend the Queen, but it also keeps Jon from being presented to the royal family. While if might be suspicious if Jon had been sent away when Robert visited, Ned does everything short of that to keep Jon unnoticed. Jon can't spar with the royal sons, and he is not present for any introduction we know about.

When Ned decides he has to go south, he fights with Catelyn over Jon staying in Winterfell because he will be "shunned." Yet when we get to King's Landing we see many bastards present in the city and some even at court. Not to say there is no distinction between trueborn and bastardborn. There clearly is, but somehow it doesn't seem the place where the Hand's bastard would be shunned. Ned's overreaction to how Jon might be treated seems more excuse than reason. Ned doesn't want Jon in King's Landing, and he is willing to bow to Catelyn's wishes for the first time in their lives concerning Jon being in Winterfell to the extent he allows Jon to join the Night's Watch before he even reaches sixteen. Yet we see no hostility from Ned toward Jon, rather only concern for him. All of which points to much more going on here than what is on the surface.

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But of course it does, and it has little to do with the timeline. First and foremost, having premarital sex, impregnating the woman and not marrying her ASAP to do right by her is totally and completely out of character for Ned. So is taking the baby away from his mother, so is hurting him by keeping his mother's identity from him, so is not giving Ashara a single thought. The closest it might get to admitting some guilt is a mention of old guilts on the way back from the brothel, but even here, he thinks only about Lyanna, and Rhaegar.

There are many clues that point to Jon's mother being someone else than Ashara, but that was not my point. There is nothing in the books themselves that rules out Ashara being Jon's mother. The nearest thing we have that does that is the timeline problems I reference in my post. But even here we cannot rule it out if we can't rule out a meeting between Ned and Ashara during the right time period.

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True. I'm 90% (if not even more) convinced that R+L=J is true. However, because I'm a crime& thriller voracious reader and lover, I know that the most obvious solution is not the right one in most cases and this theory does seem very obvious to me. But I'm hoping that this is not so much about the secret per se as it as about the impact that would have in the story to come.

Agreed. I'm not quite as certain as you are re: RLJ. I think it's most likely, just not certain. But if it is true--am hoping for a twist in the implications--that will be fun.

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How can any deny Raegar and Lyannas love? The books speaks the truths about there relations encoded for most careful readers. Targaryens inter marriaged with Martells and some of these Targ babies have dark hair like Starks. It can be that Jon looks Martell-Stark which can confused Cersei if she looks for Rhaegar.

Ned will love his Jon and keep him even if he is half Rhaegar because he makes the promises to the Lady Lyanna, and he loves her more than Cat. Cat is new wife, Lyanna was sister longer. He keeps secret from Cat because it is not her concern.

I guess that you are thinking RLJ is the easy choice because of Internet sites, but it is not the first pick of the masses. It takes longer studies to find the hidden symbolisms.

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I don't deny Ned worries re: Cat's temper. Or that he has cause. But the quote you gave seems to hold whether Jon is Rhaegar's son, or Arthur's son, or Ned's and Ashara's kid--this fear would hold. She doesn't care for Jon as Ned's kid, refuses to keep him at Winterfell as Ned's kid. Ned seems to have concern re: Jon whether Cat knows the "secret" or not. Can't see how the fear of Cat's turning on Jon is innately tied to her finding out about his parentage (assuming it's Rhaegar). Cat would already choose any of her own over Jon--ETA--especially in a life or death situation.

Look at the context. What reason does Cersei have to fear Bran discovering that she and Jaime have been doing the deed? If Robert finds out, her children are likely to lose their inheritance, at least. In this context Ned first thinks in the abstract about how he would weigh up his children against someone else's, then goes on to think specifically about Cat weighing up hers against Jon. Why the specific example, unless it bore a more direct correlation? It's more than just the maternal thing, because he thinks specifically about Jon being the threat, and Jon to Ned & Cat's kids is hardly of Bran to Jaime & Cersei's kids.

If Jon is Rhaegar's son, then if Robert finds out, he'd be likely to take some action. He'd not be happy with Ned. He might well, for example, exile Ned. If Ned was obstinate (perhaps having a promise he was determined to keep) it might even come to war. That represents a threat to Cat's children. Jon, if the son of Rhaegar, represents the same danger of turning Robert into a threat to Cat's children as Bran does of turning Robert into a threat to Cersei's children.

Unless Ned thinks of Jon as being this kind of potential threat to Cat's kids, it's hard to see why he'd come up with that specific example at all. That he does think this way explains perfectly why he'd keep a secret even from her.

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I'm a few threads late Kingmonkey, but better late than never. You took the time to address my concerns three threads ago, and I've been meaning to respond. :cheers:

Lyanna & Jon at the tower.

I don't think that we can doubt that Rhaegar & Lyanna spent a fair bit of time together at the tower. There has to be a reason why Rhaegar named it the tower of joy, and the literary parallel of the Joyeuse Gard should not be ignored. Thus if either or both of Lyanna and Jon were no longer at the tower, they would have to have been moved from the tower at some point. Lyanna was desperately sick, and it's very unlikely she'd be moved in that condition. Furthermore, if both of them had left the tower, why would the 3KG be there? Black Crow's ronin theory that Sly Wren brought up seems to me to have a fatal flaw:

This doesn't ring at all true to me. Harrenhal was the seat of House Whent, and Dayne we can be even more certain of -- he was foremost in the pro-Rhaegar faction.

Jon's presence at the tower is much harder to pin down. I think it's perfectly feasible that Jon had been sent to Starfall by the time Ned arrived, while Lyanna and the 3KG stayed. I don't however believe that Ned's journey to Starfall is particularly good reason to believe this is so, as even if we assume Jon and Wylla were at the tower, there's still excellent reason to go to Starfall. Ned clearly has a massive respect for Dayne and was probably at least at some point in love with Ashara. Returning Dawn to Starfall seems perfectly in character. Starfall is also a convenient port, and it's a fair bet that Ned put Jon and Wylla on a ship headed to White Harbour from there.

The Joyeuse Gard is not a part of this series, so while I find it an interesting connection, it has no bearing on this debate. We don't know why Rhaegar named the tower. We don't know Rhaegar and Lyanna were together during this time, let alone that they were together at this tower. Given the tower's isolation amidst desolation, it could well have been a sarcastic nickname.

Jon's newborn-presence anywhere is quite difficult to pin down only if we ignore that his wetnurse was in service to House Dayne, and that his milkbrother is the current Lord of Starfall.

Regarding what is, and what is not, in-character for Eddard, I think it is far more in-character for Ned to spend time pulling down the tower "himself" for no great purpose other than the building of cairns, if he has not just found himself burdened with Lyanna and Jon Snow (and nearly just died from his battle with Arthur Dayne). Ned is honorable, and all, but this strains reason.

The "They" who found Ned, and who left the tower.

The recent GRRM comment says that Howland and Ned were the only two "men" to leave the ToJ. That leaves it entirely open for Jon and Wylla (and any number of other female retainers) to have left with them.

However it's also quite feasible that the "they" included one or more of the 3KG. As I've covered in depth in my Eddard in Wonderland essay linked in my sig, it is an unsafe assumption that the fight took place before Ned saw Lyanna. The dream is not literal, so there is simply nothing that proves it had to happen in that order, unless you choose to ignore GRRM telling us that the dream should not be taken too literally. This actually resolves a lot of the questions that people raise about the 3KG's behaviour in not letting Ned see his dying sister. If you're a believer in the idea that Jon was not at the tower, then it's even more unlikely that the 3KG would not even discuss Ned seeing his sister.

I'll add two more indications that the fight did not in fact go down the way it appears to in the dream.

1. Being outnumbered 3 to 7 is very poor odds, however good you are with a sword. It's a testament to how skilled the three must have been that they killed five of their enemies. If the three were on foot while the seven were on horseback as the dream implies, you'd expect something between a much easier victory and a total slaughter, depending on the ground.

2. Unless you believe that the 3KG were attempting "suicide by Ned" then the circumstances of the fight do not tally with what we know of Arthur Dayne. In the dream, the 3KG have made no effort to give themselves a defensive advantage. Yet when Jon Connington sees the Golden Company's camp, he thinks:


Should we believe that the man who first comes to Jon Con's mind as an exemplar of ordering defensive positions would stand outside a tower on foot waiting to be attacked by a force of horsemen outnumbering his force more than two to one?

An easily pulled-down tower

I think people read too much into this. The tower was ruinous, but that doesn't mean that parts of it couldn't be quite usable. Moat Cailin is also ruinous, yet perfectly capable of housing Robb's forces on the way south, and the men of the Iron Fleet who occupy it for some time. Ned and Howland had at least seven horses to help them pull down a few walls, and horses are immensely strong creatures. A horse can out-pull 10 men, so imagine if Ned and Howland had 70 men helping them. I just don't see an issue with any of this.

If the tower Ned pulled down himself was large enough to contain him, his sister, and the "They" who found him, it certainly would have been far too large for him to pull down himself after a near-death melee with Arthur Dayne. And wouldn't he have more pressing concerns at that point? Anyway...

While canon makes no mention of fire or ropes, I have no trouble assuming Ned had ropes and flint to make a fire. The text makes no mention of Ned employing horses to assist him in the task, but even that I am willing to abide for the sake of argument.

What is troubling, for me, is how this would make a difference. I can hitch my destrier to the fence post, and if it becomes frightened, and bolts, it doesn't pull down the fence. Horses are strong, but they are not bulldozers.

Another argument I've heard is that once Ned burned the wooden portions of the building, it would just fall down. There are several issues with this. What sort of round, stone watchtower has load bearing joists made of wood? It seems rather counter-intuitive.

Moat Cailin is another goood example of this, despite being ruinous, it is still capable of housing Robb's forces, as well as providing defenses. You'd think someone would have pulled down MC with their horse by now, right? ;)

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GRRM gave subtle clues, hints and foreshadowing and acknowledged that if you're a careful reader, you will know. It's obvious to us in 2015, because it's been discussed for close to 20 years.

It's only been reinforced with more subtle clues and hints with each subsequent books.

R+L=J would die out of relevancy if readers found more hints countering its significance in the overall narrative WITH other relevant choices. Until ADWD, there is none that even comes close.

Yes, but all those clues about Jon being a kIng could go both ways...

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Agreed. I'm not quite as certain as you are re: RLJ. I think it's most likely, just not certain. But if it is true--am hoping for a twist in the implications--that will be fun.

Nothing it's certain at this point but the hints are strongly in favor of R+L=J, as of now. That's all I'm saying. ;)

It can be that Jon looks Martell-Stark which can confused Cersei if she looks for Rhaegar.

Jon looks like a Stark, more like Arya who looked like Lyanna.

Cersei would have absolutely no reason to look for Rhaegar.

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I'm a few threads late Kingmonkey, but better late than never. You took the time to address my concerns three threads ago, and I've been meaning to respond. :cheers:

The Joyeuse Gard is not a part of this series, so while I find it an interesting connection, it has no bearing on this debate. We don't know why Rhaegar named the tower. We don't know Rhaegar and Lyanna were together during this time, let alone that they were together at this tower. Given the tower's isolation amidst desolation, it could well have been a sarcastic nickname.

Jon's newborn-presence anywhere is quite difficult to pin down only if we ignore that his wetnurse was in service to House Dayne, and that his milkbrother is the current Lord of Starfall.

Regarding what is, and what is not, in-character for Eddard, I think it is far more in-character for Ned to spend time pulling down the tower "himself" for no great purpose other than the building of cairns, if he has not just found himself burdened with Lyanna and Jon Snow (and nearly just died from his battle with Arthur Dayne). Ned is honorable, and all, but this strains reason.

If the tower Ned pulled down himself was large enough to contain him, his sister, and the "They" who found him, it certainly would have been far too large for him to pull down himself after a near-death melee with Arthur Dayne. And wouldn't he have more pressing concerns at that point? Anyway...

While canon makes no mention of fire or ropes, I have no trouble assuming Ned had ropes and flint to make a fire. The text makes no mention of Ned employing horses to assist him in the task, but even that I am willing to abide for the sake of argument.

What is troubling, for me, is how this would make a difference. I can hitch my destrier to the fence post, and if it becomes frightened, and bolts, it doesn't pull down the fence. Horses are strong, but they are not bulldozers.

Another argument I've heard is that once Ned burned the wooden portions of the building, it would just fall down. There are several issues with this. What sort of round, stone watchtower has load bearing joists made of wood? It seems rather counter-intuitive.

Moat Cailin is another goood example of this, despite being ruinous, it is still capable of housing Robb's forces, as well as providing defenses. You'd think someone would have pulled down MC with their horse by now, right? ;)

I see you are RLJ doubting Thomas. Jon needed milks from nursing and his mother was already died. How can Lady Lyanna feed her baby? The baby Jon was borned in this Tower which is closest to Dorne. The Lady Ashara was once Ned's girlfriends so he seeks her for helps for finding milk maid for Jon who is Wylla. Robert is Ned's friend and so he won't get suspicions, Ned needs for Wylla to be Jon's mother.

Ned is strong for the tower pulley because of his built. Recall the Starks have magics from wolf blood in them too. This was also how the Lady Lyanna hurted all the Knights when she was kotlt. Raegar seen this rare magics in her and he loved her because he knew that his fire magics with her wolf magic would make a third dragon head Magic as was the prophecy.

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Are you kidding with me or what? LOL You suggested that because he doesn't look like a Targ then he is not a Targ. I replied that not all Targs had the same look and he's also half Stark (in case the theory is the right one obviously). So your argument about him not looking like a Targ means nothing. Besides, if this theory turns out to be correct, how do you suppose that Martin would make Jon look like a Targ and still be a secret? He can't give that away, if that's indeed the secret. As a writer he has a very good tool to use and hide that fact, his mother's looks. ;)

It's funny how people keep harping about Jon's lack of Targ looks, but no-one ever questions Ned's parentage of Robb, Sansa, Bran and Rickon, or Cat's of Arya :D - Speaking of whom: the woman is important, too!

There are many clues that point to Jon's mother being someone else than Ashara, but that was not my point. There is nothing in the books themselves that rules out Ashara being Jon's mother. The nearest thing we have that does that is the timeline problems I reference in my post. But even here we cannot rule it out if we can't rule out a meeting between Ned and Ashara during the right time period.

And what I am saying is that regardless of the timeline issues, the characterisation of Ned safely rules her out :-)

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Yes, but all those clues about Jon being a kIng could go both ways...

Among many hints, Martin is fashioning Jon like Tolkien's Aragorn, his version of it. They both have many similarities.

http://asoiaf.westeros.org/index.php/topic/117963-jon-snow-and-aragorn-similarities/?p=6288980

Will Martin decide in his story for Jon not to wear a crown or die in the end? Of course, it's his story. But for us, the RLJ fans that do believe Jon was born royalty (Rhaegar married Lyanna), was because of the sprinkles of hints Martin has laid out throughout the novels. We took it further to surmised the conclusion that...

"Maybe Martin will make Jon king in the end, after all"

http://asoiaf.westeros.org/index.php/topic/79816-a-king-in-hiding-adding-it-all-up/

http://asoiaf.westeros.org/index.php/topic/86094-a-king-in-hiding-adding-it-all-up-part-2/

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Well, if we're being that nitpicking we don't know that for sure either. Maybe in Westeros they do know since the baby is borned. As I said, if Jon would look like a Targ later, he would've dealt with the problem later, I guess. In the meanwhile, what do you expect him to do, kill him? Make him disappear? He would never do such a thing to anyone, whether he looked like a Targ or not, much less if this was his sister's son and he promised her to look after him.

No we don't but I thought we were discussing in case she indeed had a boy and that boy is Jon. We are giving reason of why we think the way we do. You of Jon not being Lyanna's boy and me that he is.

See above, it is not. Ned would have no chouice but to protect the boy in anycase.

Are you kidding with me or what? LOL You suggested that because he doesn't look like a Targ then he is not a Targ. I replied that not all Targs had the same look and he's also half Stark (in case the theory is the right one obviously). So your argument about him not looking like a Targ means nothing. Besides, if this theory turns out to be correct, how do you suppose that Martin would make Jon look like a Targ and still be a secret? He can't give that away, if that's indeed the secret. As a writer he has a very good tool to use and hide that fact, his mother's looks. ;)

You are going to fit right in over here! Glad my arguments brought you some laughs.

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