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[TWoW Spoilers] Aeron I (Balticon)

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First of all, sorry for the writing, I just can't with words these days. Second of all, first and only time I read the bible was when I was 12-14 and I told myself I would do it. Some memories are hazy. Nevertheless, this chapter is choke full of bible references.

 

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It was always midnight in the belly of the beast.

This is IMO a reference to story of Jonah. Only I am having trouble making head or tails with it. Jonah was ordered to prophesy the destruction of Nineveh but he refused, then he was swallowed by the leviathan and spat out after 3 days; after this he did his duty. IIRC. I should probably reread and then post about this, but NAH, maybe somebody has read it more recently and will be able to remind us.

But how does that translate to Aerion's story here? IDK

Or maybe it is meant to represent a shout out to Jesus. CHRISTIANS, DON'T BURN ME FOR HERESY! Anyway, Father sacrifices his Son for sins of the world, so that people would be free of the original sin and be able to enjoy eternal life. Euron is a brother who sacrifices his brother, his salt wife and unborn child with king's blood + additional priests for ??? -> PROFIT!

Midnight might be meant to remind us of the 'dark night of the soul', the (IIRC) time where god is absent to test our faith and we must continue with deeds of faith even when the spiritual rewards are not there. But there is probably some symbolism attached to midnight itself.

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The mutes had robbed him of his robe and cloak.

Quote

Matthew 27:35
When they had crucified Him, they divided up His garments by casting lots.
Mark 15:24
And they crucified Him. They also divided His garments by casting lots to decide what each of them would take.
John 19:23 When the soldiers had crucified Jesus, hey divided his garments into four parts, one fore each soldier, with the tunic remaining. It was seamless, woven in one piece from top to bottom. 

Not a direct parallel, since there is no division, but Aeron hardly had clothes worth anything.

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The shackles that held him to the wall were old and rusted and cut into his feet and wrists. When the tide rushed in to kiss them, the salt got into the wounds and made him gasp.

Feet and hands, again, where Jesus would have been pierced with nails.

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They bound Aeron Damphair tight with strips of leather that would shrink when wet. Clad only in his beard and breachcloth.

Remind you of anything? Once Falia joins him there will be the image of three people tied like Jesus and those two bandits.

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“Kneel, brother,” the Crow’s Eye commanded. “I am your king. I am your god. Worship me, and I will raise you up to be my priest.

Like Jesus was tempted in the desert to bow to the Devil, like christian martyrs were ordered to bow to the emperor like to a god. Aeron resists him to the end.

He prays all the time. For rescue, then for death, then for drowned god to kill euron.

*¨*•.¸¸⋆*✩*¨*•.¸¸⋆*✩*¨*•.¸¸⋆*✩*¨*•.¸¸⋆*✩*¨*•.¸¸⋆*✩*¨*•.¸¸⋆*✩*¨*•.¸¸⋆*✩*¨*•.¸¸⋆*✩*¨*•.¸¸⋆*✩*¨

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His feet had grown huge and soft and puffy, shapeless things as big as hams.

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swollen in green heft devoured by crabs, the Drowned God festered with the Red Sea Horse, still dripping from its hair.

Aeron is becoming an avatar of the Drowned God?

...................

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Urrigon haunted his fever dreams.

You’re dead now, Urri, Aeron thought. Sleep now, child, and trouble me no more. Soon I shall come to join you.

After being hunted by the rusty hinge and visions of his brother for the entire chapter so far, this is the last mention of Urri. It is as if Aeron ordered him to sleep and it worked. He is giving peace to the dead now? And IMO also putting his demons to rest. 

There is also IMO sign of growth in the fact that the first time Aeron drinks shade of the evening he wakes up screaming while pissing himself. Second time there is no mention of it. He compares the terror he feels to the one faithful feel when drowning. At least that is how I understood this passage. After that, he is no longer terrified, he curses his captors, orders people even though his orders are not obeyed, gives them no satisfaction, and tries to encourage Falia. His time in the belly of the leviathan is over.

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“Do you know what waits below the sea, brother?”

“The Drowned God,” Aeron said. “In watery hals.”

Urri shook his head. “Worms. Worms await you, Aeron.”

Compare to how Patchface uses 'under the sea'

 

*¨*•.¸¸⋆*✩*¨*•.¸¸⋆*✩*¨*•.¸¸⋆*✩*¨*•.¸¸⋆*✩*¨*•.¸¸⋆*✩*¨*•.¸¸⋆*✩*¨*•.¸¸⋆*✩*¨*•.¸¸⋆*✩*¨*•.¸¸⋆*✩*¨*•.
Something this trippy and full of apocalyptic schtick couldn't possibly go without shout-outs to Revelation, so I skimmed a bit (John, whatever were you ON?)

Quote

Euron: “The bleeding star stoaked the end,” he said to Aeron. “These are the last days, when the world shall be broken and remade, and a new god shall be born from the graves and charnel pits.”

Rev 8:10. And the third angel sounded the trumpet: and a great star fell from heaven, burning as it were a torch. And it fell on the third part of the rivers and upon the fountains of waters:

9:1. And the fifth angel sounded the trumpet: and I saw a star fall from heaven upon the earth. And there was given to him the key of the bottomless pit.

There is more, but I can't read it this late at night. It is scarier than what GRRM is writing.

I have a question for others, since Euron is pretty much becoming chthulu in the later visions, is the shadow in shape of a woman also a shout-out to something from elsewhere?

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21 minutes ago, Good Guy Garlan said:

That's not a deconstruction of the Evil Queen, that's literally the Evil Queen. 

And no, the prophecy doesn't mean Cersei more complex. It's reductive and ultimately unnecessary, as all the ingredients for her character were there and could've been explored far more organically instead of inserting a last minute prophecy to give her some motivations. 

For example, her hatred of Tyrion easily stems from the fact that he "killed" her mother during birth and because Cersei, always trying to be like Tywin, followed her father's lead in despising him due to his condition as a dwarf. You don't need some bullshit valonqar nonsense to make her paranoid. She was already paranoid. Ditto Margaery. She would've suspected Margaery anyway because of the coin Varys planted in the dungeons and because Cersei was going to be naturally jealous of anyone earning the love of the commoners and Tommen. There's no need for the Younger, More Beautiful Queen. That's GRRM spoonfeeding us unnecessarily. 

To deconstruct it, you have to play the character archetype somewhat straight in some ways.

Cersei in contrast to Jon and Dany's heroes is what happens when you put the Evil Queen in charge of a kingdom. It ends up with her falling apart, getting herself jailed and enemies pouncing on her 

Jon gets himself assassinated because the need to do good/ his hero's instinct is too great for him to ignore 

Daenerys' peace falls apart because she couldn't compromise any longer and just wanted to brute force her way through her problems a la Conan the Barbarian 

 

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14 minutes ago, Good Guy Garlan said:

You're right, I guess he's more of an equal opportunity hater, like Trump. So that's a potentially interesting wrinkle we could scratch from his character. 

I too think this chapter is miles better than the dumpster fire that was Arianne II. Jesus Christ, what the fuck was that? But it also kind of makes me wonder if GRRM's bag of tricks isn't as extensive as we once thought. This chapter had a very real "been there, done that" vibe for me. 

Rumors. Traveling. Caves. Trees. Traveling. Ruminating.  The Griffin's doing this and that. Ruminating.  Ima send some more ravens.  LOL.

You might say, that was a chapter that could have been, let me see, edited out of the final version....I don't get what people have seen in it.  It could have consisted of 2 paragraphs. Should have.  And this is why Winds is not finished.  And this is why the Winds will not put the series in position to be concluded by a 7th book.

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3 minutes ago, Lord_Ravenstone said:

To deconstruct it, you have to play the character archetype somewhat straight in some ways.

Cersei in contrast to Jon and Dany's heroes is what happens when you put the Evil Queen in charge of a kingdom. It ends up with her falling apart, getting herself jailed and enemies pouncing on her 

Jon gets himself assassinated because the need to do good/ his hero's instinct is too great for him to ignore 

Daenerys' peace falls apart because she couldn't compromise any longer and just wanted to brute force her way through her problems a la Conan the Barbarian 

 

The Evil Queen was in charge of a kingdom, she fell apart, got herself jailed and her enemies pounced on her. Instead of a Walk of Shame she was forced to dance around in hot iron shoes until she died, but the element of punishment remained essentially the same. 

If there's a deconstruction at work, it's that we're seeing the story from the Evil Queen's perspective, but that's really not enough to justify the prophecy. I just don't see what's the merit of Maggy the Frog and all that. 

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5 minutes ago, Good Guy Garlan said:

The Evil Queen was in charge of a kingdom, she fell apart, got herself jailed and her enemies pounced on her. Instead of a Walk of Shame she was forced to dance around in hot iron shoes until she died, but the element of punishment remained essentially the same. 

If there's a deconstruction at work, it's that we're seeing the story from the Evil Queen's perspective, but that's really not enough to justify the prophecy. I just don't see what's the merit of Maggy the Frog and all that. 

 

Ah, I didn't know that. I guess I was thinking of the Disney version where she gets killed by dwarves which I think GRRM was thinking of when he decided to turn Tyrion into a dwarf (which is another reason I think he really is the valonquar)

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27 minutes ago, DrunkSister said:

First of all, sorry for the writing, I just can't with words these days. Second of all, first and only time I read the bible was when I was 12-14 and I told myself I would do it. Some memories are hazy. Nevertheless, this chapter is choke full of bible references.

 

This is IMO a reference to story of Jonah. Only I am having trouble making head or tails with it. Jonah was ordered to prophesy the destruction of Nineveh but he refused, then he was swallowed by the leviathan and spat out after 3 days; after this he did his duty. IIRC. I should probably reread and then post about this, but NAH, maybe somebody has read it more recently and will be able to remind us.

But how does that translate to Aerion's story here? IDK

Or maybe it is meant to represent a shout out to Jesus. CHRISTIANS, DON'T BURN ME FOR HERESY! Anyway, Father sacrifices his Son for sins of the world, so that people would be free of the original sin and be able to enjoy eternal life. Euron is a brother who sacrifices his brother, his salt wife and unborn child with king's blood + additional priests for ??? -> PROFIT!

Midnight might be meant to remind us of the 'dark night of the soul', the (IIRC) time where god is absent to test our faith and we must continue with deeds of faith even when the spiritual rewards are not there. But there is probably some symbolism attached to midnight itself.

Not a direct parallel, since there is no division, but Aeron hardly had clothes worth anything.

Feet and hands, again, where Jesus would have been pierced with nails.

Remind you of anything? Once Falia joins him there will be the image of three people tied like Jesus and those two bandits.

Like Jesus was tempted in the desert to bow to the Devil, like christian martyrs were ordered to bow to the emperor like to a god. Aeron resists him to the end.

He prays all the time. For rescue, then for death, then for drowned god to kill euron.

*¨*•.¸¸⋆*✩*¨*•.¸¸⋆*✩*¨*•.¸¸⋆*✩*¨*•.¸¸⋆*✩*¨*•.¸¸⋆*✩*¨*•.¸¸⋆*✩*¨*•.¸¸⋆*✩*¨*•.¸¸⋆*✩*¨*•.¸¸⋆*✩*¨

Aeron is becoming an avatar of the Drowned God?

...................

After being hunted by the rusty hinge and visions of his brother for the entire chapter so far, this is the last mention of Urri. It is as if Aeron ordered him to sleep and it worked. He is giving peace to the dead now? And IMO also putting his demons to rest. 

There is also IMO sign of growth in the fact that the first time Aeron drinks shade of the evening he wakes up screaming while pissing himself. Second time there is no mention of it. He compares the terror he feels to the one faithful feel when drowning. At least that is how I understood this passage. After that, he is no longer terrified, he curses his captors, orders people even though his orders are not obeyed, gives them no satisfaction, and tries to encourage Falia. His time in the belly of the leviathan is over.

Compare to how Patchface uses 'under the sea'

 

*¨*•.¸¸⋆*✩*¨*•.¸¸⋆*✩*¨*•.¸¸⋆*✩*¨*•.¸¸⋆*✩*¨*•.¸¸⋆*✩*¨*•.¸¸⋆*✩*¨*•.¸¸⋆*✩*¨*•.¸¸⋆*✩*¨*•.¸¸⋆*✩*¨*•.
Something this trippy and full of apocalyptic schtick couldn't possibly go without shout-outs to Revelation, so I skimmed a bit (John, whatever were you ON?)

There is more, but I can't read it this late at night. It is scarier than what GRRM is writing.

I have a question for others, since Euron is pretty much becoming chthulu in the later visions, is the shadow in shape of a woman also a shout-out to something from elsewhere?

That's pretty cool.

the HOTU also has references to Revelations with the three lies being references to the false prophet, Levithan and behemoth 

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Come on, people, Euron isn't much worse than Aeron or Victarion. All those Ironborn are sick bastards, Euron is just the smart guy who has realized that the few restraints they put on themselves (like a religion) or the kinslayer are foolish, too.

I mean, Aeron has no trouble drowning innocents and Vic has literally beaten his wife to near death and then fed her to the crabs. Not to mention his twisted Slaver's Bay sacrifices.

Even Asha is twisted with her rape games and all that stuff.

@Good Guy Garlan

As to Cersei:

Well, I think the prophecy is a necessary element to make Cersei act the way she did. Because she is actually too smart to see Margaery on her own as a real threat to her. If there was no prophecy Cersei could have taken her time to ruin her slowly, not to mention that she would never have developed the notion that Tyrion was hiding in the walls and all if she had not, by that time, concluded that her little brother was sort of destined to ruin everything she had.

And no, Cersei is no psychopath. She is entitled and a narcissist but that's true for a lot of people in that environment. And the murder of Melara is not so bad in this environment/society. Violence is much more prevalent in this world, and as Lord Tywin's daughter Cersei could essentially get away with anything. 

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43 minutes ago, Good Guy Garlan said:

I just don't see what's the merit of Maggy the Frog and all that. 

Giving depth to Cersei's sick relationship with her children, being that she does not love any of them in a truly deep, healthy way. If her children are threatened, she conflates that with a threat to her being specifically because of the prophecy. Her not loving her children in any normal, healthy sense was hinted at in A Storm of Swords when she has sex with Jaime near enough on Joffrey's corpse.

Besides, the prophecy only began to truly define her and her downfall when Joffrey died, which actually validated a fear that was otherwise at the back of her mind like a shadow--always there, but not something she obsessed over until is began to seemingly come true before her.

Edited by Red Helm

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I think Quaithe is in cahoots with Euron. I'm pretty sure now that she was warning Dany against the people who would keep her from Euron.

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Well, Euron really is a sick bastard. GRRM continues the trend of making me feel sorry for previously despised characters. Not aure what to make of Euron - I always thought he was just mad and drunk on his own myth but this makes me think he might actually know what he's on about.  He's definitely dabbled in magic and is continuing to do so - and I'm actually excited ot see what this leads to in regards to the Redwyne fleet and Oldtown. When Dany sacrificed her child she got dragons in the bargain. 

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Asshai, Dany thought. She would have me go to Asshai. "Will the Asshai'i give me an army?" she demanded. "Will there be gold for me in Asshai? Will there be ships? What is there in Asshai that I will not find in Qarth?" 

"Truth," said the woman in the mask. And bowing, she faded back into the crowd.

Quote

 

“Release me. The god commands it.”

“Drink with me. The king commands it.”

Euron grabbed a handful of the priest’s tangled black hair, pulled his head back, and lifted his wine cup to his lips, but what flowed into his mouth was not wine. It was thick and viscous, with a taste that seemed to change with every swallow. Now bitter, now sour, now sweet. When Aeron tried to spit it out, his brother tightened his grip and forced more down his throat.

“That’s it, priest. Go on. Drink it down. The wine of the warlocks. Sweeter than your seawater, and more truth in it than all the gods of earth.”

 

 

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49 minutes ago, Maid So Fair said:

Well, Euron really is a sick bastard. GRRM continues the trend of making me feel sorry for previously despised characters. Not aure what to make of Euron - I always thought he was just mad and drunk on his own myth but this makes me think he might actually know what he's on about.  He's definitely dabbled in magic and is continuing to do so - and I'm actually excited ot see what this leads to in regards to the Redwyne fleet and Oldtown. When Dany sacrificed her child she got dragons in the bargain. 

At the very least he is going to get a dragon and a kraken and probably something a lot worse. We know from some of Mel's visions that the "heaviest blow" will fall near "towers by the sea". This is probably Oldtown and either we get one more Aeron chapter showing us Euron's ritual and the destruction of the Redwyne fleet or that happens off the page and we get a Sam POV with something awful speeding towards Oldtown from the sea. 

On another note people seem to think Moqorro will somehow save Victarion or at least Vic will snag Rhaegal for himself but I don't buy it. Our Vic is a poor dumb patsy if ever there was one. Moqorro tells Victarion that it matters not who blows the horn for the dragons will serve the one who claims the horn with blood. Vic seems to assume that Euron has yet to do this....this is a bad assumption. There is also the wild card of the Dusky Woman. She is either a FM or belongs 100% to Euron and I am pretty sure she was "given" to Victarion to make sure Euron's plan goes down the way he wants it to. On top of that we don't know what the hell Moqorro did to "heal" Victarions hand and for all we know Victarion is already the walking dead. Like I said, Vic is a puppet and if you don't believe me let Moqorro lay some knowledge down:

Quote

I have seen you in the nightfires, Victarion Greyjoy. You come striding through the flames stern and fierce, your great axe dripping blood, blind to the tentacles that grasp you at wrist and neck and ankle, the black strings that make you dance.

 

 

 

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I don't think Victarion assumes Euron has not done this: indeed, far from it, he now knows that he must himself do what's necessary to "claim" it for himself, thus breaking the previous "claim" (after all, Euron would have had to do it himself). After all, if Euron has NOT "claimed" it, then it will still acknowledge a previous master - even if that master is long dead - and thus, "not Victarion". Dumb as a stump he may be, but I don't believe he's dumb enough to misunderstand that.

I don't, however, think he will succeed in mastering the horn for himself, although he may for a time believe he has succeeded.

Edited by JLE

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6 hours ago, Good Guy Garlan said:

For all we know he could join Aegon the Conqueror and juggle lemon cakes on top of a dragon. I'm basing my opinion on the information we have so far, not in what may or may not happen in the future. 

Then his arc would end in bitterness and disappointment. 

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2 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

 

@Good Guy Garlan

As to Cersei:

Well, I think the prophecy is a necessary element to make Cersei act the way she did. Because she is actually too smart to see Margaery on her own as a real threat to her. If there was no prophecy Cersei could have taken her time to ruin her slowly, not to mention that she would never have developed the notion that Tyrion was hiding in the walls and all if she had not, by that time, concluded that her little brother was sort of destined to ruin everything she had.

And no, Cersei is no psychopath. She is entitled and a narcissist but that's true for a lot of people in that environment. And the murder of Melara is not so bad in this environment/society. Violence is much more prevalent in this world, and as Lord Tywin's daughter Cersei could essentially get away with anything. 

 

2 hours ago, Red Helm said:

Giving depth to Cersei's sick relationship with her children, being that she does not love any of them in a truly deep, healthy way. If her children are threatened, she conflates that with a threat to her being specifically because of the prophecy. Her not loving her children in any normal, healthy sense was hinted at in A Storm of Swords when she has sex with Jaime near enough on Joffrey's corpse.

Besides, the prophecy only began to truly define her and her downfall when Joffrey died, which actually validated a fear that was otherwise at the back of her mind like a shadow--always there, but not something she obsessed over until is began to seemingly come true before her.

I don't wanna derail the thread any longer, so I'll just say this:

Cersei had every reason to be paranoid about Tyrion. Not only had she hated him her whole life, but he had just killed her father and her son (as far as she knew) after threatening her to her face, and he vanished without a trace, which means he wasn't acting alone. She also had every reason to be suspicious of the Tyrells, not least because of the coin Varys planted precisely to make her more paranoid. 

And the beauty of it all is that she's almost right about everything. Tyrion did kill Tywin, Varys really was hiding in the walls, and the Tyrells actually poisoned Joffrey and were trying to fill the Small Council with their own people. 

So it works well without the chessy ass prophecy. I'd argue it actually works better without it because her fear and paranoia would come from a wholly human place - her deep seated hatred of Tyrion, her jealousy of Margaery, her insecurities, her trying to hold on to Tommen for her own power, etc - rather than some unnecessary magical pseudo retcon. 

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14 minutes ago, Good Guy Garlan said:

 

I don't wanna derail the thread any longer, so I'll just say this:

Cersei had every reason to be paranoid about Tyrion. Not only had she hated him her whole life, but he had just killed her father and her son (as far as she knew) after threatening her to her face, and he vanished without a trace, which means he wasn't acting alone. She also had every reason to be suspicious of the Tyrells, not least because of the coin Varys planted precisely to make her more paranoid. 

And the beauty of it all is that she's almost right about everything. Tyrion did kill Tywin, Varys really was hiding in the walls, and the Tyrells actually poisoned Joffrey and were trying to fill the Small Council with their own people. 

So it works well without the chessy ass prophecy. I'd argue it actually works better without it because her fear and paranoia would come from a wholly human place - her deep seated hatred of Tyrion, her jealousy of Margaery, her insecurities, her trying to hold on to Tommen for her own power, etc - rather than some unnecessary magical pseudo retcon. 

But the prophecy doesn't take any of that away, it only ramps up everything she already believed. 

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2 minutes ago, Lord_Ravenstone said:

But the prophecy doesn't take any of that away, it only ramps up everything she already believed. 

It makes it look more forced, contrived and artificial rather than the natural, organic progression of the character. 

But that's just me and my opinion and I don't wanna derail the thread with this topic. 

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6 hours ago, Lord_Ravenstone said:

You realize that outline has almost completely changed, right? 

There are some similar things but there's likely not going to be any Stark-Arya Union, Jaime won't be king, Sansa never married Joffrey or will choose the a new family over the old one, Benjen isn't LC etc. 

I mean a major part of Book 2 is Stannis and Renly and they're not even in the outline.

------

Also keep in mind that the Horn of Joramun has entered Euron's orbit and we know Euron wants to bring some sort of Apocalypse down on Westeros 

that horn is going to be blown and it seems fitting that the guy with the blue lips that is reminiscent of of a person freezing will do it 

A lot of the details changed since 1993. The three major plot acts have not.

Stannis and Renly are side characters, just like Euron. None of them are really that important.

It's possible Euron is connected with the Other storyline, I suppose. I just think it makes more sense for him to be an antagonist for Dany. I mean, he's currently trying to marry her, steal her dragons, and take over her kingdom. This antagonist role fits perfectly with the prophecies in the House of the Undying and it also fits with GRRM's leaked outline.

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7 hours ago, Illyrio Mo'Parties said:

Also: Damphair is the shit. I'll never understand why people don't find him fascinating.

Well, he's going to give us a very close narration of the battles to come. VERY CLOSE. :P

 

But seriously, I really liked this aspect of him. I would have never guessed Asha was his fav, and him giving Falia words of comfort was unexpectedly tender :(

7 hours ago, Whitering said:

Didn't Oldtown surrender to the Targs because of a prophecy that if they fought the Targs their city would be burned to the ground or something?

Nah, the then High Septon or whoever was in charged said that to make the whole thing more mysterious. I mean, you need no prophecy to know that, if you don't surrender to the guy with teh dragons, you're gonna get all burned. :dunno: 

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6 hours ago, Gi_Varotti said:

 

Wasn't Theon about to be executed by Stannis as an offer to R'hllor when Asha told him to sacrifice him to the Old Gods of the Starks? :/

This is from the released Winds' Theon's chapter 

 

 

i think there is about 0 probablyt of that happening.

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