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Could Rhaegar have fought for the other side?

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On 23/4/2018 at 0:18 PM, Ylath's Snout said:

That said, outside of Drone a unhappy marriage seems like it could be miserable for both partners. While that isn't everything it isn't nothing too.

Oh I agree, a miserable marriage isn't fun. But unless one member of the couple is Ramsay Bolton or Cersei it's not the end of the world either, there are many ways to make it tolerable.

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On 4/28/2018 at 9:34 AM, John Suburbs said:

My point exactly. We can only infer all of these things about the episode: Who abducted Lyanna? Why? Was she abducted at all or did she go willingly? What was her relationship with her family? What was Rhaegar really thinking? Was he really the one orchestrating all of this?

To simply say "these are the most logical conclusions based on the evidence we have" is a rookie mistake when it comes to Martin. If we had applied this standard at the end of Clash, we would have concluded that Cersei and/or Jaime murdered Jon Arryn to cover up their incest. My, how wrong that was. At the end of Storm, we would have concluded that Robb Stark and Jeyne Westerling just happened to fall in love. Another huge mistake based on the evidence we had at the time.

Martin is a cagey writer. If he can throw out false clues and lead readers astray as to what is happening right now, right in front of us on the page, then he can most certainly do the same thing with events that happened 15 years ago.

Actually, we are given plenty of notice that Lysa Arryn's account of what happened to Jon is suspect.  For one, the fact that we never see the letter in the first place.  For another, the conflicting accounts for why Lysa flees court.  But moreover, that is an ongoing mystery, with facts still being uncovered.  We will not, cannot, learn any more details of Lyanna's abduction, as there are no eyewitnesses alive to prove it.  And Robb and Jeyne Westerling did just fall in love.  There may have been some chemical inducement as well, but we see that Robb is equally committed to her afterwards, and takes as much joy in her company, as before.

You can believe what you want.  But the level of skepticism you employ is stupid.  Why are you even naming the Lannister siblings as Cersei and Jaime?  Maybe those are code names.  How do we know that Lysa really murdered Jon Arryn?  After all, if she's so easily manipulated as to kill her husband, surely she can be made to make a false confession!  You see how silly it is?  At some point, we need to trust that the narrative is mostly right unless we have reason to believe otherwise.  This is true many times over when it fits thematically.

Who even says that Rhaegar was at the Tower of Joy?  Or even Lyanna?  What if Lyanna isn't even dead?  We never see her corpse, after all, not firsthand.

If you want to treat everything we learn as suspect, that's fine.  But you seem conveniently willing to accept lots of things as facts when it suits your purpose.  Thematically speaking it makes the most sense for Lyanna to be the product of a less than savory relationship.  Narratively/textually speaking, we don't have one shred of evidence of any other explanation, except the distinctly unreliable Viserys, who is only ever misinformed or a liar.  

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18 hours ago, cpg2016 said:

Actually, we are given plenty of notice that Lysa Arryn's account of what happened to Jon is suspect.  For one, the fact that we never see the letter in the first place.  For another, the conflicting accounts for why Lysa flees court.  But moreover, that is an ongoing mystery, with facts still being uncovered.  We will not, cannot, learn any more details of Lyanna's abduction, as there are no eyewitnesses alive to prove it.  And Robb and Jeyne Westerling did just fall in love.  There may have been some chemical inducement as well, but we see that Robb is equally committed to her afterwards, and takes as much joy in her company, as before.

Yes, there were all sorts of hints that J&C did not kill JA, but the bulk of evidence pointed directly at them, right up to the moment Pycelle tells Tyrion point blank: "He knew ... about ... about..." and then, "the queen needed Lord Arryn dead." As far as I can see, that mystery is solved: J&C did not kill JA, Lysa did at the direction of Littlefinger.

GR has stated in numerous SSMs that we will know what happened at the ToJ and who Jon's parents are. We have Bran, who is learning to see into the past, and there is an eye witness to her death who likely knows the whole story.

Robb and Jeyne did not just fall in love. Connect the dots: Sybelle Spicer is the granddaughter of Maggy the Frog, a woods witch that the people of Lannisport use to go to for cures and love potions. So if Lady Sybelle had grandma Maggy's recipe for moon tea, it's a pretty good bet that she had the one for love potions as well.

Please take off the Robb/Jeyne romance goggles. Robb does not take much joy in her company later on:

Quote

SoS, Cat III

"It's Robb," the girl said. "He's so miserable, so ... angry and disconsolate. "I don't know what to do."

snip

"I want to be a good wife to him, I do, but I don't know how to help. To cheer him, or comfort him. I don't know what he needs."

And later, at their third parting on the way to the twins, even Catelyn notices: He speaks her gently, but there is anger underneath.

 

19 hours ago, cpg2016 said:

You can believe what you want.  But the level of skepticism you employ is stupid.  Why are you even naming the Lannister siblings as Cersei and Jaime?  Maybe those are code names.  How do we know that Lysa really murdered Jon Arryn?  After all, if she's so easily manipulated as to kill her husband, surely she can be made to make a false confession!  You see how silly it is?  At some point, we need to trust that the narrative is mostly right unless we have reason to believe otherwise.  This is true many times over when it fits thematically.

Who even says that Rhaegar was at the Tower of Joy?  Or even Lyanna?  What if Lyanna isn't even dead?  We never see her corpse, after all, not firsthand.

If you want to treat everything we learn as suspect, that's fine.  But you seem conveniently willing to accept lots of things as facts when it suits your purpose.  Thematically speaking it makes the most sense for Lyanna to be the product of a less than savory relationship.  Narratively/textually speaking, we don't have one shred of evidence of any other explanation, except the distinctly unreliable Viserys, who is only ever misinformed or a liar.  

You can take your non-skepticism to extreme lengths all you want, but this story is chock full of things that appeared true but turned out to be false. I agree that we don't know if Rhaegar was at the ToJ, but you're stretching it to strawman proportions to say that Lyanna was not or that she is not dead.

Likewise, you seem conveniently willing to declare some aspects of the abduction story as false but not others as suits your purpose. The key difference between us is that I withhold my conclusions until all the facts are in while you seem content to arbitrarily decide what is fact and what is fiction. But, c'est le vie.

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12 minutes ago, John Suburbs said:

Yes, there were all sorts of hints that J&C did not kill JA, but the bulk of evidence pointed directly at them, right up to the moment Pycelle tells Tyrion point blank: "He knew ... about ... about..." and then, "the queen needed Lord Arryn dead." As far as I can see, that mystery is solved: J&C did not kill JA, Lysa did at the direction of Littlefinger.

GR has stated in numerous SSMs that we will know what happened at the ToJ and who Jon's parents are. We have Bran, who is learning to see into the past, and there is an eye witness to her death who likely knows the whole story.

Robb and Jeyne did not just fall in love. Connect the dots: Sybelle Spicer is the granddaughter of Maggy the Frog, a woods witch that the people of Lannisport use to go to for cures and love potions. So if Lady Sybelle had grandma Maggy's recipe for moon tea, it's a pretty good bet that she had the one for love potions as well.

Please take off the Robb/Jeyne romance goggles. Robb does not take much joy in her company later on:

 

You can take your non-skepticism to extreme lengths all you want, but this story is chock full of things that appeared true but turned out to be false. I agree that we don't know if Rhaegar was at the ToJ, but you're stretching it to strawman proportions to say that Lyanna was not or that she is not dead.

Likewise, you seem conveniently willing to declare some aspects of the abduction story as false but not others as suits your purpose. The key difference between us is that I withhold my conclusions until all the facts are in while you seem content to arbitrarily decide what is fact and what is fiction. But, c'est le vie.

Weren't they doing it a few times a day? Doesn't that suggest at least a wee bit of affection? 

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6 minutes ago, Lost Melnibonean said:

Weren't they doing it a few times a day? Doesn't that suggest at least a wee bit of affection? 

They're trying to have children, to be sure. But sex does not equal love or affection, and I submit Robb's attitude toward Jeyne when they are not doing it speaks far more loudly about his true feelings than when he is performing his royal duty.

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6 minutes ago, John Suburbs said:

They're trying to have children, to be sure. But sex does not equal love or affection, and I submit Robb's attitude toward Jeyne when they are not doing it speaks far more loudly about his true feelings than when he is performing his royal duty.

Let's get some perspective here.

Robb had lost Winterfell to a man he trusted, lost his two younger brothers, had to execute one of his strongest bannerman, and was trying not to lose the Freys after marrying Jeyne. 

It is understandable for Robb to be angry and disconsolate. 

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31 minutes ago, John Suburbs said:

They're trying to have children, to be sure. But sex does not equal love or affection, and I submit Robb's attitude toward Jeyne when they are not doing it speaks far more loudly about his true feelings than when he is performing his royal duty.

I dunno... whenever I have done it, I was attracted to the person I was doing it with, at least at the time. 

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24 minutes ago, OtherFromAnotherMother said:

Let's get some perspective here.

Robb had lost Winterfell to a man he trusted, lost his two younger brothers, had to execute one of his strongest bannerman, and was trying not to lose the Freys after marrying Jeyne. 

It is understandable for Robb to be angry and disconsolate. 

All true, but the fact remains that Jeyne is not able to provide any comfort and Cat can see the anger in Robb's attitude toward her. So my contention stands: Robb does not "take as much joy in her company" as time goes by. He becomes distant and noncommunicative. The love potion they used to ensnare him has worn off.

9 minutes ago, Lost Melnibonean said:

I dunno... whenever I have done it, I was attracted to the person I was doing it with, at least at the time. 

Have you been married long?

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10 minutes ago, John Suburbs said:

All true, but the fact remains that Jeyne is not able to provide any comfort and Cat can see the anger in Robb's attitude toward her. So my contention stands: Robb does not "take as much joy in her company" as time goes by. He becomes distant and noncommunicative. The love potion they used to ensnare him has worn off.

I am going to go with the more likely reasoning.

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2 hours ago, OtherFromAnotherMother said:

I am going to go with the more likely reasoning.

Well, look at the facts on the page. Yes, Robb is under great strain, his army is in turmoil, he's just had to kill a bannerman and he's overwhelmed by the pressures of being king. At the same time, his love for Jeyne is waning. She cannot comfort him, cannot even talk to him and even Catelyn sees the anger just beneath the surface when they are together.

So my point was not to say that Robb does not have a lot on his plate, but to dispel the notion that he is taking "just as much joy in her company" as he was at the beginning of his marriage. Clearly he is not, whatever the cause. That is the most likely reasoning.

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12 minutes ago, John Suburbs said:

Well, look at the facts on the page. Yes, Robb is under great strain, his army is in turmoil, he's just had to kill a bannerman and he's overwhelmed by the pressures of being king. At the same time, his love for Jeyne is waning. She cannot comfort him, cannot even talk to him and even Catelyn sees the anger just beneath the surface when they are together.

So my point was not to say that Robb does not have a lot on his plate, but to dispel the notion that he is taking "just as much joy in her company" as he was at the beginning of his marriage. Clearly he is not, whatever the cause. That is the most likely reasoning.

We've gone off topic enough.

If you want to make a love potion thread I might be willing to continue a discussion over there.

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3 hours ago, John Suburbs said:

All true, but the fact remains that Jeyne is not able to provide any comfort and Cat can see the anger in Robb's attitude toward her. So my contention stands: Robb does not "take as much joy in her company" as time goes by. He becomes distant and noncommunicative. The love potion they used to ensnare him has worn off.

Have you been married long?

20 years and three kids. 

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3 hours ago, OtherFromAnotherMother said:

I am going to go with the more likely reasoning.

Always a good idea. Not always right, but always a good idea. 

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41 minutes ago, OtherFromAnotherMother said:

We've gone off topic enough.

If you want to make a love potion thread I might be willing to continue a discussion over there.

Feel free. It comes up from time to time, so they're bound to be in the archives. They usually devolve along the same old lines: if people don't want to believe it they simply site the lack of irrefutable proof in the story, as if it would be worth discussing if it was that obvious.

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47 minutes ago, OtherFromAnotherMother said:

We've gone off topic enough.

If you want to make a love potion thread I might be willing to continue a discussion over there.

At least we are not talking about the purple wedding...

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1 minute ago, John Suburbs said:

Feel free. It comes up from time to time, so they're bound to be in the archives. They usually devolve along the same old lines: if people don't want to believe it they simply site the lack of irrefutable proof in the story, as if it would be worth discussing if it was that obvious.

Oh I don't have any interest in creating the thread.

I just wanted to respectfully let you know I won't be discussing it here any further, as we've strayed off topic enough. 

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10 minutes ago, Lost Melnibonean said:

At least we are not talking about the purple wedding...

Well, since you brought it up...

Just kidding! Har!

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On 5/3/2018 at 11:52 AM, John Suburbs said:

Robb and Jeyne did not just fall in love. Connect the dots: Sybelle Spicer is the granddaughter of Maggy the Frog, a woods witch that the people of Lannisport use to go to for cures and love potions. So if Lady Sybelle had grandma Maggy's recipe for moon tea, it's a pretty good bet that she had the one for love potions as well.

We have no freakin clue if those love potions work.  Like I said, you seem to have no problem assuming all sorts of fantastical or magical elements are ironclad reality while ignoring the overwhelming preponderance of textual evidence for other things.  We can reasonably infer that moon tea is a working contraceptive, because it's widely regarded as such and seems to have 100% effectiveness in Cersei's case.

But love potions?  We've never seen one to work, we know magic wasn't very powerful prior to the start of the series, why should we possibly think that Maggy's grandmother (and by the way, you have no evidence that Maegi the Frog is Sybelle's grandma) had a working magical potion?

You know what's more convincing?  Robb is in a state of physical and emotional trauma, and reaches out to a pretty girl who is in intimate contact with him already for comfort.  That's perfectly reasonable and borne out by actual human experiences.  And after, he's infatuated with her, and it goes from there.

On 5/3/2018 at 11:52 AM, John Suburbs said:

Please take off the Robb/Jeyne romance goggles. Robb does not take much joy in her company later on:

None of the quotes you provided are any evidence that Robb is angry at Jeyne.  She's a new wife (and a teenager!) who is trying to do her best by the man she married, who she barely knows or understands (and we know there are significant cultural differences between North and South).

Given the massive strains Robb is under, it isn't surprising he is angry.  But he is constantly positive in his regard for Jeyne, even in private, with the mother he knows disapproves of his action.  Why lie to Catelyn, of all people?

Jeyne makes him smile, and I have nothing to share with him but grief. He seemed to enjoy the company of his bride's brothers, as well; young Rollam his squire and Ser Raynald his standard-bearer. They are standing in the boots of those he's lost, Catelyn realized when she watched them together. Rollam has taken Bran's place, and Raynald is part Theon and part Jon Snow. Only with the Westerlings did she see Robb smile, or hear him laugh like the boy he was. To the others he was always the King in the North, head bowed beneath the weight of the crown even when his brows were bare.

Cat doesn't say "Jeyne makes him horny" or "he must smile when with her."  Robb takes public joy in the presence of his wife, and his wife's family no less, that he doesn't express at any other time.  Your conflating two unrelated phenomenon; that Robb is angry and upset about the political and personal misfortunes he's had in the war, and the fact that Jeyne wants to make him feel better.

Oh, and because you very deliberately cut out important contextual evidence in your quote, let me complete it for you:

Robb bid farewell to his young queen thrice. Once in the godswood before the heart tree, in sight of gods and men. The second time beneath the portcullis, where Jeyne sent him forth with a long embrace and a longer kiss. And finally an hour beyond the Tumblestone, when the girl came galloping up on a well-lathered horse to plead with her young king to take her along.
 
Robb was touched by that, Catelyn saw, but abashed as well. The day was damp and grey, a drizzle had begun to fall, and the last thing he wanted was to call a halt to his march so he could stand in the wet and console a tearful young wife in front of half his army. He speaks her gently, she thought as she watched them together, but there is anger underneath.

Robb says goodbye twice, once in a meaningful religious/cultural setting.  And Robb wouldn't be touched by the gesture of his wife not wanting him to leave if he didn't care for her.  Yeah, he's pissed she's coming out, because he's a teenager and he is being forced into an awkward spot in front of his entire army and all his political supporters.  He's abashed - that turns pretty easily to anger in a teenager.  If he didn't care for her, he wouldn't be gentle and he wouldn't be touched.

Moreover, Jeyne is very clearly still in love with Robb.

"It was mine." Jeyne sobbed. "You had no right. Robb had it made for me. I loved him."

Again, it takes some real contortion of logic to assume that Sybelle is still pumping her daughter full of love potion.  To what end?  And if Jeyne was genuinely in love with Robb, then doesn't it make far more sense that Robb genuinely cared for Jeyne?  As I'll say below, why does it serve the narrative or the thematic elements of the story to have it be a love potion?  It adds nothing.  Part of what ties Robb and Ned, and leads to both of their downfall, is supposed to be their unyielding honor.  Or their attempt at it.  It makes the entire story more potent to have Robb genuinely care for Jeyne, and have that be one of the roots of his downfall, than it does to have it be a cheap trick on the part of Sybelle.  That part is achieved by having her secretly dope her daughter with contraceptives.  Why even have Jeyne in the story, in that case?  Why not have him be seduced by some other person?

On 5/3/2018 at 11:52 AM, John Suburbs said:

You can take your non-skepticism to extreme lengths all you want, but this story is chock full of things that appeared true but turned out to be false. I agree that we don't know if Rhaegar was at the ToJ, but you're stretching it to strawman proportions to say that Lyanna was not or that she is not dead.

Yes, and those things that turned out to be false have narrative or thematic purpose.  You believe everything is suspect except what you want to be true, and the only dividing line between your absolute skepticism and your blind faith seems to be whatever position you've taken.  I believe that certain things hold true from our world to the books (such as human nature) and that GRRM is writing a series with thematic and narrative arcs, and that if something looks like a duck (bears a resemblance to how actual humans behave) and squawks like a duck (has a reason for being in the story), then it's most likely a  duck.  You seem to accept random things, like the existence of effective love potions, as beyond skepticism, and consider that to be a stronger explanation for why Robb became infatuated with Jeyne than the much simpler explanation that he was vulnerable in many senses and she took pity on him (the Florence Nightingale Effect).

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