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Lyanna Stark: A Gift from Old Gods

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Just a few rando thoughts on this interesting topic. In no particular order:

A grey girl on a dying horse fleeing a marriage =?= Lyanna fleeing (soon to be king) Robert, which lead to the rebellion and the death of a few wolves, including the she-wolf, Lyanna herself after she gave birth. The clue for Jon's mother was given really, realy early in the story?

Jon, the wolf, was stabbed in his mutiny by men who certain of them claimed (secretly and not-so-secretly) to still be under the influence of the crown in King's Landing. Jon paralleling his own mother :(

Slight crackpot: Uber devout Selyse had a part in Jon's mutiny, encouraged by Mel who seems to be viewing Jon in a new light;) Mel may have needed Jon dead in order to revive his as (what she believes) AA reborn. That could explain why Marsh and Wick Whittlestick are crying with their hands up and claiming, "not me." Were they under a spell or "Queen Stag" direction? You use a wick to start a fire, and you can say that you whittle sticks (wood/weirwood) as kindling- the stabbing in to Jon. Mel has already had the free folk burn parts of their weirwood tree-gods literally, this could cover the symbolic part. Or not? :dunno:

And this is just a follow up (silly) question to some of the other thoughts in this thread, if the wolf mother was a sacrifice (could have been?) why a pregnant mother who was basically full term. Her pups were all developed enough to be fully formed and crawling around and such. Why leave the pups "unsacrificed" :ack:, or not take them for another future use?

 

Edited by The Fattest Leech

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2 minutes ago, TheSeer27 said:

So Mance killed the direwolf? For what reasoning?

Well why do you think he would be involved with the old gods and the Starks?

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22 minutes ago, TheSeer27 said:

So Mance killed the direwolf? For what reasoning?

Mance was on the wrong side of the Wall. Gared was very close at the right time.

As to Mance, however, he wasn't a wildling born. Osha is pretty firm on that.

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15 hours ago, Black Crow said:

Mance was on the wrong side of the Wall. Gared was very close at the right time.

As to Mance, however, he wasn't a wildling born. Osha is pretty firm on that.

Yes, I prefer occam's razor.  Gared still has to recieve the antler knife, she-wolf and make a binding oath and that requires someone who speaks the common tongue.  That's not likely to be the White Walkers unless they can speak directly to the mind.  

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On 3/29/2017 at 2:17 PM, Black Crow said:

I'm implying that the tines were snapped off prior to its being used as a dagger in order to ensure that it penetrated deeply enough to kill the beast. If they were retained they would have stopped it going in so far.

Sure, that would certainly help. But tines snap off of their own accord. It's what they do. It's their job.

 

On 3/28/2017 at 2:02 PM, Black Crow said:

That's one of the major clues that all aint what it seems here. If a foot of antler had simply snapped off - say as the stag first impaled and then tossed the she-wolf [some stag!] then you would expect it was described as a foot long tine, but the tines being snapped off before the she-wolf was stabbed implies something else entirely,

If you ever get a chance to come visit me in the states, BC, I'll take you hunting and we can finally settle this debate. I'm serious. Consider it a standing invitation. We'll go up to Idaho or Montana. Beautiful country.

If you or I are fortunate enough to bring down a seasoned buck or bull, I guarantee you will not find a perfect rack.

Tines, and even sometimes beams, break in combat. A seasoned male will break many over the course of his life, fighting for females. (If this sounds like a joust, it should...)

When taking down an impressive buck/bull, you see the battle scars. When you see a rack on display, the tines have usually been repaired for mounting.

In nature, tines break. If you bring down the lead male in a herd, he'll have few tines left after years of defending his females from up-jumped squires. It's just the way it is.

So I must again disagree on this issue. There's no major clue here unless we make some very unnecessary presumptions.

1, we don't know if the tines were snapped off before impaling the direwolf. The act of colliding with a monstrous wolf's monstrous neck bones would easily be enough to snap the tines from a run of the mill stag's antler.

2, it is far more common to find a foot of shattered antler with snapped tines than it is to find a foot of shattered antler with tines in tact.

 

On 3/29/2017 at 6:08 PM, LynnS said:

I wonder if Mance Rayder goes by any secret titles.  B)  You need a man of the Watch to open the Black Gate and there is that second door down a sinkhole somewhere.  Val is another to keep your eyes on.  She is the one who tells Jon about the Horned Lord's warning concerning sorcery and someone who casually walked off with Ghost at one point.   

I get the feeling "Mance Rayder" isn't his birth-name. It seems a bit too cute, right? A "manse raider" who is named Mance Rayder.

 

9 hours ago, LynnS said:

Yes, I prefer occam's razor.  Gared still has to recieve the antler knife, she-wolf and make a binding oath and that requires someone who speaks the common tongue.  That's not likely to be the White Walkers unless they can speak directly to the mind.  

Yup. No need for such complications to the story. The direwolf is a plot device, as is Gared's execution.

But...

I do think the Others let Gared escape. And I think they let Gared escape knowing he would, in his post-traumatic stupor, find his way to Winterfell.

And I think someone opened the Black Gate to allow him to slip through the Wall.

And, I think it too much of a coincidence for Gared's destination to have caused Ned and his sons to cross paths with the direwolf.

Gared was a crow, sent by the Others to Winterfell, carrying a very clear message: Winter is coming.

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8 minutes ago, Voice said:

 

If you ever get a chance to come visit me in the states, BC, I'll take you hunting and we can finally settle this debate. I'm serious. Consider it a standing invitation. We'll go up to Idaho or Montana. Beautiful country.

 

May well take you up on that. I've hunted with Abenaki in Canada and Crow in the North West, and know Texas, but have never [or not yet] been to Montana.:cheers:

 

As to the question at hand, I spent a lot of time in red deer country when I was a kid and take your point about racks of antlers in real life, but this is a novel written by a portly gentleman from New Jersey now resident in New Mexico and still feel that the cause of death has been so described with more regard to the plot than fidelity to nature.

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10 minutes ago, Voice said:

Sure, that would certainly help. But tines snap off of their own accord. It's what they do. It's their job.

 

If you ever get a chance to come visit me in the states, BC, I'll take you hunting and we can finally settle this debate. I'm serious. Consider it a standing invitation. We'll go up to Idaho or Montana. Beautiful country.

If you or I are fortunate enough to bring down a seasoned buck or bull, I guarantee you will not find a perfect rack.

Tines, and even sometimes beams, break in combat. A seasoned male will break many over the course of his life, fighting for females. (If this sounds like a joust, it should...)

When taking down an impressive buck/bull, you see the battle scars. When you see a rack on display, the tines have usually been repaired for mounting.

In nature, tines break. If you bring down the lead male in a herd, he'll have few tines left after years of defending his females from up-jumped squires. It's just the way it is.

So I must again disagree on this issue. There's no major clue here unless we make some very unnecessary presumptions.

1, we don't know if the tines were snapped off before impaling the direwolf. The act of colliding with a monstrous wolf's monstrous neck bones would easily be enough to snap the tines from a run of the mill stag's antler.

2, it is far more common to find a foot of shattered antler with snapped tines than it is to find a foot of shattered antler with tines in tact.

 

I get the feeling "Mance Rayder" isn't his birth-name. It seems a bit too cute, right? A "manse raider" who is named Mance Rayder.

 

Yup. No need for such complications to the story. The direwolf is a plot device, as is Gared's execution.

But...

I do think the Others let Gared escape. And I think they let Gared escape knowing he would, in his post-traumatic stupor, find his way to Winterfell.

And I think someone opened the Black Gate to allow him to slip through the Wall.

And, I think it too much of a coincidence for Gared's destination to have caused Ned and his sons to cross paths with the direwolf.

Gared was a crow, sent by the Others to Winterfell, carrying a very clear message: Winter is coming.

Exactly.  I think the objective is to get the direwolf pups beyond the Wall and the killing of the she-wolf has to be timed with the birth of the pups.  On foot, how long does it take Gared to reach the place of execution?  Gestation period is about 60-70 days. It's passing strange that Gared would have control of a wild direwolf all that time and we know a warg and direwolf are blocked by the wall if separated. This is either one really tame direwolf or someone else came beyond the Wall.  The Others are meant to procure a man of the Watch to open the Gate and take the wolf.  How do they communicate with Gared?  Something is missing.  

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On 3/30/2017 at 8:25 AM, The Fattest Leech said:

Just a few rando thoughts on this interesting topic. In no particular order:

A grey girl on a dying horse fleeing a marriage =?= Lyanna fleeing (soon to be king) Robert, which lead to the rebellion and the death of a few wolves, including the she-wolf, Lyanna herself after she gave birth. The clue for Jon's mother was given really, realy early in the story?

Mayhaps. But I think the bold is stronger on its own, without the inclusion of the grey girl on a dying horse. Mel's visions are often wrong, and we only assume the grey girl is fleeing a marriage because that's what Alys Karstark was doing. Imo, Alys adequately satisfies Mel's vision, and Lyanna adequately satisfies the dire-mum omen, in a bed of blood, in the snow.

 

On 3/30/2017 at 8:25 AM, The Fattest Leech said:

Jon, the wolf, was stabbed in his mutiny by men who certain of them claimed (secretly and not-so-secretly) to still be under the influence of the crown in King's Landing. Jon paralleling his own mother :(

My thoughts as well. :(

But I think we shouldn't be sad. If Lyanna is Jon's mother, she gave her life "for the watch." And Jon isn't dead, SSM.

 

On 3/30/2017 at 8:25 AM, The Fattest Leech said:

Slight crackpot: Uber devout Selyse had a part in Jon's mutiny, encouraged by Mel who seems to be viewing Jon in a new light;) Mel may have needed Jon dead in order to revive his as (what she believes) AA reborn. That could explain why Marsh and Wick Whittlestick are crying with their hands up and claiming, "not me." Were they under a spell or "Queen Stag" direction? You use a wick to start a fire, and you can say that you whittle sticks (wood/weirwood) as kindling- the stabbing in to Jon. Mel has already had the free folk burn parts of their weirwood tree-gods literally, this could cover the symbolic part. Or not? :dunno:

Why Selyse? Mel is there to have orchestrated it all.

Still, I do like the parallels, but of course I would. I am of the opinion that the miasma currently afflicting woe upon Westeros was caused by the destruction of Weirwoods by the First Men (that theory here).

 

On 3/30/2017 at 8:25 AM, The Fattest Leech said:

And this is just a follow up (silly) question to some of the other thoughts in this thread, if the wolf mother was a sacrifice (could have been?) why a pregnant mother who was basically full term. Her pups were all developed enough to be fully formed and crawling around and such. Why leave the pups "unsacrificed" :ack:, or not take them for another future use?

The sacrifice, in my opinion, was Lyanna giving up her life to give Jon his. We see the same choice presented to another child-woman of surpassing loveliness, Dany –– who chose self-preservation via Khal Drogo over the life of her unborn child.

Thankfully for us, Lyanna chose for Jon to live. (Assuming she is Jon's mother... which we should always keep in mind is indeed an assumption on our part.)

So, with that in mind, the direwolf in Bran I AGOT mirrors Lyanna's sacrifice. In my opinion, this was an act of nature (aka, the nameless Old Gods of the wood):  The mother direwolf, facing a death caused by her own "wildness within" ("the wolf blood," as Rickard called it), chose to use her remaining strength to whelp the pups –– dying in the process.

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7 minutes ago, LynnS said:

It's passing strange that Gared would have control of a wild direwolf all that time

Passing stranger that a mama wolf would even leave her den at all while pregnant, much less right about the time of whelp.   That's not something female wolves do unless there is an extreme and dire threat to staying put.  

Which begs another question:  where was papa wolf?   That is, the leader of the pack that was responsible for the pups in the first place?   Males don't abandon their mates, especially during denning.    They do the hunting and the providing so mama doesn't have to.     Yet, we have a pregnant female near whelp roaming around mateless south of the Wall.  Why?

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10 minutes ago, Black Crow said:

May well take you up on that. I've hunted with Abenaki in Canada and Crow in the North West, and know Texas, but have never [or not yet] been to Montana.:cheers:

:cheers: Cool! I'll have to start cleaning the old 30-30, or just buy a new one. LOL. Montana is awesome. Some of the best hunting and fishing imaginable.

 

10 minutes ago, Black Crow said:

As to the question at hand, I spent a lot of time in red deer country when I was a kid and take your point about racks of antlers in real life, but this is a novel written by a portly gentleman from New Jersey now resident in New Mexico and still feel that the cause of death has been so described with more regard to the plot than fidelity to nature.

Considering the amount of time that portly kid from New Jersey spent reading books, and how quickly he used his mental capacities to escape Bayonne, I'm confident in my position on this debate.

The guy is far more well-versed in medieval history, mythology, physics, chemistry, climate change and ecology than your average longshoreman.

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9 minutes ago, PrettyPig said:

Passing stranger that a mama wolf would even leave her den at all while pregnant, much less right about the time of whelp.   That's not something female wolves do unless there is an extreme and dire threat to staying put.  

Unless they are hungry.

And we do not know how close she was to whelping. A traumatic experience can bring on labor before the intended time. I think this is what befell the mother she-wolf.

 

9 minutes ago, PrettyPig said:

Which begs another question:  where was papa wolf?   That is, the leader of the pack that was responsible for the pups in the first place?   Males don't abandon their mates, especially during denning.    They do the hunting and the providing so mama doesn't have to.     Yet, we have a pregnant female near whelp roaming around mateless south of the Wall.  Why?

What reason have we to assume this she-wolf was not the leader of her pack? And no, female wolves hunt. They do not sit at home and wait for hubby to come home with money for groceries.

One need only look at Nymeria to see how this direwolf might have smaller, weaker, male thralls in tow.

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17 minutes ago, Voice said:

What reason have we to assume this she-wolf was not the leader of her pack?

Even if she was the alpha female & pack leader, she would choose an alpha male with which to mate.  And yes, when they kick into denning high gear a few weeks prior to whelp,  they focus primarily on finding and preparing the den, while the male and other pack subordinates bring back food.

Now, we're talking direwolves here so I guess they can do what they want, but given GRRM's neck of the woods I'm assuming that he's modeling behavior after regular wolves, which means it is *unusual* for a mama wolf to be striking out alone close to the time of birth.    Because that behavior is *unusual*, I think we can look to likewise unusual circumstances that might lead that to happen.

On a side note, did you know that wolves make dens not only in caves, but in other dark, safe places...like deep inside tree roots?

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23 minutes ago, PrettyPig said:

Even if she was the alpha female & pack leader, she would choose an alpha male with which to mate.  And yes, when they kick into denning high gear a few weeks prior to whelp,  they focus primarily on finding and preparing the den, while the male and other pack subordinates bring back food.

Sure. I'm just saying that this might have been a premature labor brought on by trauma.

 

23 minutes ago, PrettyPig said:

Now, we're talking direwolves here so I guess they can do what they want, but given GRRM's neck of the woods I'm assuming that he's modeling behavior after regular wolves, which means it is *unusual* for a mama wolf to be striking out alone close to the time of birth.    Because that behavior is *unusual*, I think we can look to likewise unusual circumstances that might lead that to happen.

Oh most definitely. I'm all about unusual circumstances leading to these unlucky hellhounds who were born with the dead, hence the OP. :cheers:

If Lyanna is Jon Snow's mother, and Jon was nursed by Wylla of Starfall shortly after his birth, then it seems Lyanna too was away from her den at the time of delivery.

 

23 minutes ago, PrettyPig said:

On a side note, did you know that wolves make dens not only in caves, but in other dark, safe places...like deep inside tree roots?

I did. :D

Hence part of my reasoning for Jon Snow as the Weirwood Ghost, and his mother's undying/ghost-presence within the trees.

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2 hours ago, Voice said:

Mayhaps. But I think the bold is stronger on its own, without the inclusion of the grey girl on a dying horse. Mel's visions are often wrong, and we only assume the grey girl is fleeing a marriage because that's what Alys Karstark was doing. Imo, Alys adequately satisfies Mel's vision, and Lyanna adequately satisfies the dire-mum omen, in a bed of blood, in the snow.

Yeah, some of these were just random thoughts.

Quote

 

My thoughts as well. :(

But I think we shouldn't be sad. If Lyanna is Jon's mother, she gave her life "for the watch." And Jon isn't dead, SSM.

That is cool! Personally, after the first hour of near freak outs I realized that I fell for it :lol: Also, I do not think Jon is Ned-dead.

Also this from 2011. http://ew.com/article/2011/07/21/dance-with-dragons-shocking-twist-g/

ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: So why did you kill Jon Snow?

GEORGE R.R. MARTIN: Oh, you think he’s dead, do you?

 

Quote

 

Why Selyse? Mel is there to have orchestrated it all.

Oh, I will pm you my thoughts on this because there are probably people who are sick to death of me rambling on about it^_^

Quote

 

The sacrifice, in my opinion, was Lyanna giving up her life to give Jon his. We see the same choice presented to another child-woman of surpassing loveliness, Dany –– who chose self-preservation via Khal Drogo over the life of her unborn child.

I will have to keep following and reading along. I can't say that I am 100% with the idea that the wolf was Lyanna... unless I missed something already in this thread... to which, sorry if I did but my work load in real life :ack: tripled this week and I may have missed something.

Quote

Thankfully for us, Lyanna chose for Jon to live. (Assuming she is Jon's mother... which we should always keep in mind is indeed an assumption on our part.)

I am an RLJ'r to the core, but I do also fully recognize that because it isn't in print yet, then it isn't canon... yet ;)

Quote

So, with that in mind, the direwolf in Bran I AGOT mirrors Lyanna's sacrifice. In my opinion, this was an act of nature (aka, the nameless Old Gods of the wood):  The mother direwolf, facing a death caused by her own "wildness within" ("the wolf blood," as Rickard called it), chose to use her remaining strength to whelp the pups –– dying in the process.

Ok, the wold dying is mirroring Lyanna's sacrifice I can get behind. I guess I misunderstood and thought you mean the she-wolf was being warged by Lyanna when it happened. Doh!:blushing:

Edited by The Fattest Leech

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Really interesting discussion. My approach always emphasizes the literary clues and tends to grant some leeway on the literal things: I’m interested in the fact that the antler tines were broken, for instance, but less concerned with how they snapped off.

A few random and somewhat contradictory thoughts about issues raised here:

Jon discovered the sixth wolf pup after he returns to the dead body of the mother wolf and finds the white pup. This reminds me of Will finding the wight of Ser Waymar after watching Ser Waymar die. I think the whole notion of the OP, that Lyanna is in the weirwoods and Lyanna sent the pups, helps to explain the symbolism of the dead mother wolf’s relationship to the direwolf Ghost: the pup is symbolically the “wight” of the dead mother wolf.

Also, Jon hears the sixth pup but no one else in the group has heard it and we learn subsequently that the direwolf Ghost is always silent. I’m just putting together some thoughts on the Bran VI chapter of ACoK for the direwolf re-read thread, and there seems to be a special communication between Bran and Summer in that chapter, as well: The sensations in Summer’s mind include, “The voice he did not hear, the scent without a smell” and, when he arrives at the tree Bran had pictured in Summer’s mind, “the shadow he’d glimpsed without seeing.” In that situation, Bran is putting the thoughts into Summer’s head; in the scene where Jon discovers Ghost, the direwolf seems to be putting the thoughts into Jon’s head. Maybe we should be examining whether Jon is the warg or whether Ghost is a skinchanger that can get into a human.

But I raise the issue of the “voice he did not hear” because of the discussion here about Gared and why he would know what the Others want to say or be chosen by them to carry a message. Keep in mind that Gared has lost both ears to frostbite. I think this is a literary clue that he is now uniquely attuned to hearing the message of winter – the cold took his ears.

Gared may also be the symbolic Reek serving the Others – just as Ramsay Snow gradually takes Theon’s fingers and toes and teeth and other parts of his body, the cold has taken bits and pieces of Gared. If this interpretation is correct, it might support the idea that Gared and the mother wolf travelled together to find Jon Snow. We will later see Theon / Reek help the fake Arya (Jeyne Poole) escape and travel toward the Wall. (Now taking bets on whether fArya / Jeyne is pregnant with a baby Snow as she makes her journey with Theon / Reek. Oh, and notice that Jeyne may lose the tip of her nose to frostbite as a result of the winter conditions.)

I will also say that I believe the word “deserter,” associated with Gared, is probably an important clue about Jon Snow. The author may be setting up a comparison between the deserters Gared and Jon, but perhaps also between the judgmental father Ned and the merciful father Jeor. Gared is the fourth deserter Ned kills that year. Ned is really, really determined to follow the letter of the law and wipe out deserters, instead of returning them to Mormont to let him make the decision. Mormont chooses not to behead Jon Snow after Jon deserts the Night’s Watch. In fact, Mormont knew Jon was going to desert and he let him do it before forgiving him and making sure he retrieves the valuable sword Mormont has also given him. In a way, maybe that shows that Ned and Mormont both give swords to deserters. Ned just gives Gared the sword Ice through the neck. (As Craster points out with a chuckle, the “bite” took Gared’s head, too.)

The coming through or under or over the Wall is significant, but I don’t know that we have to pin down the literal method used by Gared and/or the mother direwolf. We don’t know how Osha and her travelling companions did the trick, either. The Bran VI, ACoK chapter I mentioned earlier is all about trying to get over the wall of Winterfell – Theon’s raiders manage to do it (with the use of “long claw” grappling hooks) but Bran is not quite able to warg Summer into doing it, using a slanted Sentinel pine tree. The breeching of walls, going under or over is a huge set of symbols in the books but we don’t always see it or get the details of how it is done – Thoros of Myr is a party animal and magical guy (who does not understand how his own magic works) and he is first over the wall at Pyke.

Another possibility: Deserters might still be able to use the Black Gate or Gared may not have really deserted. We know that Night’s Watch men like Yoren or Benjen Stark are allowed to go south on company business. Maybe Gared went through the Night Fort’s Black Gate like a normal member of the NW, using his vow to gain passage. A chapter or two earlier in ACoK, Qhorin Halfhand makes a big point of saying that the Starks are the key to stopping the looming threat that is gathering beyond the Wall. Gared was a seasoned veteran of the NW, like Qhorin. Perhaps there was a standing order to report to the Starks if you find evidence of magic or of the Others. Ned says that Gared knew he would die for coming south / deserting; Qhorin also knew he would die when he took Jon Snow to the wildlings.

As for the mother direwolf, maybe she stealthily followed Gared as he made his way south, or maybe he knew the wolf was tracking him and recognized it as an omen and as evidence. At the scene of Ser Waymar’s death, Will picks up the hilt of Royce’s shattered sword and says this will be his evidence when he reports the attack by the Others.

Which brings me back to the tines on the antler, another stabbing weapon that has been broken. On another thread, I just expressed my thought that the Torentine river may allude to both Torrhen Stark, the man who bent the knee, and to the tines of a fork – significant because of the forks or tines of the Trident river each of which has its own origin, function and symbolism in the story. I completely buy the explanation that bucks lose tines in the normal course of defending their harems. But I suspect that the detail about the tines snapped off the antler were just to remind us that the antler had tines and was therefore part of the symbolism involving forks (in rivers) and Arya’s silver fork, which she throws into a canal. But I may be wrong.

Parting thoughts: Joffrey uses trebuchets nicknamed “The Whores” to throw antler men over a wall, returning them to their king. How many literary symbols are common to that scene and to the Gared / pups in the snow scene? Or to Theon and Jeyne Poole’s escape from Winterfell? There is no end to the trail of literary symbols, if you like that kind of thing.

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On 2017-03-30 at 11:47 AM, Black Crow said:

Mance was on the wrong side of the Wall. Gared was very close at the right time.

As to Mance, however, he wasn't a wildling born. Osha is pretty firm on that.

Oh for some reason, I was under the impression that Mance was present at the feast for Robert at Winterfell disguised as a Bard.

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21 hours ago, The Fattest Leech said:

Yeah, some of these were just random thoughts.

That is cool! Personally, after the first hour of near freak outs I realized that I fell for it :lol: Also, I do not think Jon is Ned-dead.

Also this from 2011. http://ew.com/article/2011/07/21/dance-with-dragons-shocking-twist-g/

ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: So why did you kill Jon Snow?

GEORGE R.R. MARTIN: Oh, you think he’s dead, do you?

<iframe src="https://player.vimeo.com/video/28442042" width="640" height="480" frameborder="0" webkitallowfullscreen mozallowfullscreen allowfullscreen></iframe>
<p><a href="https://vimeo.com/28442042">Mostly Dead - Princess Bride</a> from <a href="https://vimeo.com/cwcoty">Chuck Coty</a> on <a href="https://vimeo.com">Vimeo</a>.</p>

So hard to embed things here, so I'll drop the link as well:

 

21 hours ago, The Fattest Leech said:

Oh, I will pm you my thoughts on this because there are probably people who are sick to death of me rambling on about it^_^

Cool. I know the feeling! :D

I did try to read it on my phone but the site froze up on me.  I'll try again. :cheers:

 

21 hours ago, The Fattest Leech said:

I will have to keep following and reading along. I can't say that I am 100% with the idea that the wolf was Lyanna... unless I missed something already in this thread... to which, sorry if I did but my work load in real life :ack: tripled this week and I may have missed something.

I'm not saying that Lyanna herself was the wolf, but it is stated in the text that she had the wolf blood.

 

21 hours ago, The Fattest Leech said:

I am an RLJ'r to the core, but I do also fully recognize that because it isn't in print yet, then it isn't canon... yet ;)

Yet... :D

I'm still a fan of RLJ, but there are some inconsistencies which give me pause.

 

21 hours ago, The Fattest Leech said:

Ok, the wold dying is mirroring Lyanna's sacrifice I can get behind. I guess I misunderstood and thought you mean the she-wolf was being warged by Lyanna when it happened. Doh!:blushing:

Since you are a fan of RLJ, maybe I can better explain my thoughts with some equations. I'm suggesting far more than a mere mirroring or parallel here, although those are certainly important. I'll see if I can convey my meaning in a more visual way. (Godswood/Crypts) should be read as "Godswood over Crypts" or "Godswood divided by Crypts."

Lyanna + (Godswood/Crypts) = Wolfblooded Weirwood Gift

 

Ghost is that Wolfblooded Weirwood Gift, but so is Jon. A boy named "Snow" born from a dying mother in a bed of wolf blood, with a direwolf pup born from a dying mother in a snowy bed of wolf blood. The seeds of purpose are buried in such "coincidences."

The dead mother wolf in Bran I AGOT was Dead-Lyanna's means of connecting Jon to his purpose in life from the realm beyond. As with other messages from the realm of the Old Gods, it bore the face of a weirwood. White, with red eyes.

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I had thought that Bran or Bloodraven encouraged Lyanna to run off to her destiny, but if you really get strange with time flowing forward and backwards with the use of prophecies, specialized races, and nature consciousness, it could be Lyanna's ghost urging her to make her choices. Stay tuned!

i had also thought that the mother dire wolf was merely symbolic, but the author has God like qualities in his own written world! He can move forward and backward, until the book is published, and still there are work arounds.

What did Lyanna know, and when did she know it?

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21 hours ago, Seams said:

Really interesting discussion. My approach always emphasizes the literary clues and tends to grant some leeway on the literal things: I’m interested in the fact that the antler tines were broken, for instance, but less concerned with how they snapped off.

:cheers:

 

21 hours ago, Seams said:

A few random and somewhat contradictory thoughts about issues raised here:

Jon discovered the sixth wolf pup after he returns to the dead body of the mother wolf and finds the white pup. This reminds me of Will finding the wight of Ser Waymar after watching Ser Waymar die. I think the whole notion of the OP, that Lyanna is in the weirwoods and Lyanna sent the pups, helps to explain the symbolism of the dead mother wolf’s relationship to the direwolf Ghost: the pup is symbolically the “wight” of the dead mother wolf.

Hmm. I suppose it could be seen that way. Must need Lyanna have a wight? I prefer to think of her as dead, with an imprint of her consciousness/love for Jon embedded within Winterfell's heart tree. What is dead stays dead, decays, but nourishes new life: the tree, Winterfell, the children, the wolves.

I see the pup as symbolizing this return of life and power. An awakening.

 

21 hours ago, Seams said:

Also, Jon hears the sixth pup but no one else in the group has heard it and we learn subsequently that the direwolf Ghost is always silent. I’m just putting together some thoughts on the Bran VI chapter of ACoK for the direwolf re-read thread, and there seems to be a special communication between Bran and Summer in that chapter, as well: The sensations in Summer’s mind include, “The voice he did not hear, the scent without a smell” and, when he arrives at the tree Bran had pictured in Summer’s mind, “the shadow he’d glimpsed without seeing.” In that situation, Bran is putting the thoughts into Summer’s head; in the scene where Jon discovers Ghost, the direwolf seems to be putting the thoughts into Jon’s head. Maybe we should be examining whether Jon is the warg or whether Ghost is a skinchanger that can get into a human. 

I've long been of the opinion that the direwolves in Bran I AGOT caused an otherwise dormant warg-gene to become expressed.

North of the Wall, they are not warg-blocked, but south of the Wall, people are (thanks to House Targaryen).

It is easy to see the gift develop from a human point of view, because our POVs are human. But I believe that just as Bran and his siblings began to have wolf dreams, so too were the wolves having Stark Dreams. In the Bran I link I shared above, an interesting conversation develops around this idea. Jon, Robb and Bran each begin acting/feeling like their wolves as soon as Gared's head is removed.

The influence is strong, and it is certainly symbiotic.

 

21 hours ago, Seams said:

But I raise the issue of the “voice he did not hear” because of the discussion here about Gared and why he would know what the Others want to say or be chosen by them to carry a message. Keep in mind that Gared has lost both ears to frostbite. I think this is a literary clue that he is now uniquely attuned to hearing the message of winter – the cold took his ears.

I really like this.

And notice that even before their close encounter, Gared speaks of the cold quite reverently:

"It was the cold," Gared said with iron certainty. "I saw men freeze last winter, and the one before, when I was half a boy. Everyone talks about snows forty foot deep, and how the ice wind comes howling out of the north, but the real enemy is the cold. It steals up on you quieter than Will, and at first you shiver and your teeth chatter and you stamp your feet and dream of mulled wine and nice hot fires. It burns, it does. Nothing burns like the cold. But only for a while. Then it gets inside you and starts to fill you up, and after a while you don't have the strength to fight it. It's easier just to sit down or go to sleep. They say you don't feel any pain toward the end. First you go weak and drowsy, and everything starts to fade, and then it's like sinking into a sea of warm milk. Peaceful, like."

 

21 hours ago, Seams said:

Gared may also be the symbolic Reek serving the Others – just as Ramsay Snow gradually takes Theon’s fingers and toes and teeth and other parts of his body, the cold has taken bits and pieces of Gared. If this interpretation is correct, it might support the idea that Gared and the mother wolf travelled together to find Jon Snow. We will later see Theon / Reek help the fake Arya (Jeyne Poole) escape and travel toward the Wall. (Now taking bets on whether fArya / Jeyne is pregnant with a baby Snow as she makes her journey with Theon / Reek. Oh, and notice that Jeyne may lose the tip of her nose to frostbite as a result of the winter conditions.)

I'm not a fan of the idea that Gared traveled with the wolf, but you do draw a compelling comparison.

 

21 hours ago, Seams said:

I will also say that I believe the word “deserter,” associated with Gared, is probably an important clue about Jon Snow. The author may be setting up a comparison between the deserters Gared and Jon, but perhaps also between the judgmental father Ned and the merciful father Jeor. Gared is the fourth deserter Ned kills that year. Ned is really, really determined to follow the letter of the law and wipe out deserters, instead of returning them to Mormont to let him make the decision. Mormont chooses not to behead Jon Snow after Jon deserts the Night’s Watch. In fact, Mormont knew Jon was going to desert and he let him do it before forgiving him and making sure he retrieves the valuable sword Mormont has also given him. In a way, maybe that shows that Ned and Mormont both give swords to deserters. Ned just gives Gared the sword Ice through the neck. (As Craster points out with a chuckle, the “bite” took Gared’s head, too.)

Definitely agree with this.

Gared, Jon, and the Night's King, each was a deserter.

And :bowdown: ...you raise a brilliant point regarding Ned's eagerness to kill Gared. Mormont told us point blank that if he beheaded every man who took a midnight trip down the kingsroad that there would be no one but ghosts to man the Wall. Ned knows that the Night's Watch is a "shadow" of what it once was, yet is helping to cast that shadow by beheading deserters.

 

21 hours ago, Seams said:

The coming through or under or over the Wall is significant, but I don’t know that we have to pin down the literal method used by Gared and/or the mother direwolf. We don’t know how Osha and her travelling companions did the trick, either. The Bran VI, ACoK chapter I mentioned earlier is all about trying to get over the wall of Winterfell – Theon’s raiders manage to do it (with the use of “long claw” grappling hooks) but Bran is not quite able to warg Summer into doing it, using a slanted Sentinel pine tree. The breeching of walls, going under or over is a huge set of symbols in the books but we don’t always see it or get the details of how it is done – Thoros of Myr is a party animal and magical guy (who does not understand how his own magic works) and he is first over the wall at Pyke.

Yup. Such are exercises in conjecture, entirely.

My own yarn is that someone opened the Black Gate for a stunned/maddened Gared to wander through. But, tis nothing more than a half-educated guess.

 

21 hours ago, Seams said:

Another possibility: Deserters might still be able to use the Black Gate or Gared may not have really deserted. We know that Night’s Watch men like Yoren or Benjen Stark are allowed to go south on company business. Maybe Gared went through the Night Fort’s Black Gate like a normal member of the NW, using his vow to gain passage. A chapter or two earlier in ACoK, Qhorin Halfhand makes a big point of saying that the Starks are the key to stopping the looming threat that is gathering beyond the Wall. Gared was a seasoned veteran of the NW, like Qhorin. Perhaps there was a standing order to report to the Starks if you find evidence of magic or of the Others. Ned says that Gared knew he would die for coming south / deserting; Qhorin also knew he would die when he took Jon Snow to the wildlings.

I don't think anyone knows about the Black Gate, except for Coldhands, and the guy who used to live at the Nightfort and make sacrifices to the Others.

 

21 hours ago, Seams said:

As for the mother direwolf, maybe she stealthily followed Gared as he made his way south, or maybe he knew the wolf was tracking him and recognized it as an omen and as evidence. At the scene of Ser Waymar’s death, Will picks up the hilt of Royce’s shattered sword and says this will be his evidence when he reports the attack by the Others.

This is more how I see it. I see the wolf as the leader and huntress, not the dog to follow an old broken man. If the two traveled together, I see it as the mother wolf making her journey to the Wolfswood, and Gared happened to have been around the same area. Given that the man had recently escaped the Others, I don't think he would be very intimidated by a direwolf, even if it was monstrously large.

Impossible to say.

 

21 hours ago, Seams said:

Which brings me back to the tines on the antler, another stabbing weapon that has been broken. On another thread, I just expressed my thought that the Torentine river may allude to both Torrhen Stark, the man who bent the knee, and to the tines of a fork – significant because of the forks or tines of the Trident river each of which has its own origin, function and symbolism in the story. I completely buy the explanation that bucks lose tines in the normal course of defending their harems. But I suspect that the detail about the tines snapped off the antler were just to remind us that the antler had tines and was therefore part of the symbolism involving forks (in rivers) and Arya’s silver fork, which she throws into a canal. But I may be wrong.

I really like the Torrentine connection. I'm a fan of House Dayne, and Starfall, so I want to make this work. LOL

Regarding the Trident, I once made the same argument in this thread. Divergent forks, dividing and leading Starks to their own unique destinations.

 

21 hours ago, Seams said:

Parting thoughts: Joffrey uses trebuchets nicknamed “The Whores” to throw antler men over a wall, returning them to their king. How many literary symbols are common to that scene and to the Gared / pups in the snow scene? Or to Theon and Jeyne Poole’s escape from Winterfell? There is no end to the trail of literary symbols, if you like that kind of thing.

Interesting, but yes, such interpretive breadcrumbs can lead to trails that are endless. (See @lml's essays. LOL)

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