Jump to content
Black Crow

Heresy 210 and the Babes in the Wood

Recommended Posts

Welcome to Heresy 210, the latest version of the long-running and sometimes rather quirky thread where we take an in-depth look at the story and in particular what GRRM has referred to as the real conflict, not the Game of Thrones, but the Song of Ice and Fire and the true nature of apparent threat which lies in the North, hidden in the Haunted Forest and those magical Otherlands which lie beyond the Wall.

 The thread is called Heresy because with The Wall, the Watch and a Heresy, back in 2011, we miserable heretics were the first to challenge the orthodoxy that the Wall is the last best hope of mankind; to question whether the three-fingered tree-huggers really are the kindly elves Bran once thought them to be and above all question also the popular assumption that Jon Snow is some bloke prophesied way out east and known there as Azor Ahai, who is going to ride out of the sunrise on a dragon, save the world by immolating the Icy lot and then ascend the Iron Throne to reign over dust and ashes. Instead we’re increasingly wondering whether the Starks theselves might have a rather dark [but forgotten] secret in their past, which some of us are beginning to suspect may be tall and gaunt, with characteristic long Stark faces and are very very cold. Winter after all is coming and it aint going to be pretty when it does.

We don’t all of us agree on this, or anything else for that matter, but as a free-ranging discussion group within Westeros we can safely claim to have been around for a while now and discussed an awful lot of stuff over the years since the thread cycle started in late 2011. Some of the ideas have been overtaken by events and some seemingly confirmed by GRRM’s increasingly sparse SSMs and by the earlier stages of the mummers’ version before it firmly moved into weird fan-fiction.

 However GRRM has also told us that when it comes to writing he is very much a gardener and this thread cycle follows that style, preferring the discussion to be free-ranging and organic in nature rather than fixed in tram lines.

 So dig in, enjoy yourself and if it comes to a fight just remember the local house rules; stick to the written text, have respect for the ideas of others and above all conduct the debate with great good humour.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If you're just joining us the current discussion is anent what was really going on at what Prince Rhaegar [deceased] supposedly declared to be the Tower of Joy, but didn't stick around long enough to say whether he was talking about unicorns and rainbows or was using the term "joy" ironically, as one Tyrion Lannister was wont

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I've always been suspicious of the whole Tower of Joy/R+L+J scenario. It seems too obvious and too easy, yet on the other hand out of character. There is certainly a huge question-mark over Jon Snow's true identity but in text it has always revolved around his mother. We are confident that she was Lyanna Stark, but Rhaegar doesn't fit, or rather the assumption that Jon Snow is a lost Targaryen prince isn't borne out by his physical appearance, character or story arc. 

Now something strange and interesting happened once upon a time in Dorne. and I agree that something involved decoys and switching of babies, but who and to what end?

Jon may be a king, but not necessarily a Targaryen one.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

"Come see my Tower of Joy", worst pick-up line since "A bloody sword is a beautiful thing" and only superseded by "Do you want to climb on my pink mast?"

Edited by Tucu

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, SirArthur said:

But it wasn't Darkstar and now I am 100% confused what Gerold should mirror. 

 

Let me clarify. Darkstar's given name is Gerold Dayne, and he attacked Myrcella shortly after Areo Hotah kills Ser Arys Oakheart.

Myrcella's engagement to Trystane was a pact between Dorne (the south) and the crown. The parallel inversion to this was Lyanna and Robert's engagement, which was also a pact between the North and Robert's claim to the throne.

What I'm suggesting is that Myrcella's injury is mirroring a suspected injury against Lyanna in the past. I think Darkstar's name - "Gerold Dayne" - is highly suspect, because it's a combination of Gerold Hightower's and Arthur Dayne's names.

Edited by Feather Crystal

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

hence my reference to Tyrion - after all whatever went down there was far from joyful

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
43 minutes ago, Tucu said:

"Come see my Tower of Joy", worst pick-up line since "A bloody sword is a beautiful thing" and only superseded by "Do you want to climb on my pink mast?"

:rofl:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
15 minutes ago, Feather Crystal said:

"Gerold Dayne" - is highly suspect, because it's a combination of Gerold Hightower's and Arthur Dayne's names.

I actually really want to know why Gerold Hightower was at the tower and not accompanying Rhaegar back to Aerys. And I don't see any inversion in Darkstar or any insury answering that question. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
56 minutes ago, SirArthur said:

I actually really want to know why Gerold Hightower was at the tower and not accompanying Rhaegar back to Aerys. And I don't see any inversion in Darkstar or any insury answering that question. 

If there was an attempt to resurrect Rhaegar, the players and events would mirror Mirri’s attempt to raise Drogo. Drogo’s three blood riders were at the tent to face Dany to stop the ritual. The parallel inversion  would be Rhaegar’s “blood riders” the three Kingsguard ordered to protect and enforce the ritual. IMO they were ordered by the Queen Regent, Rhaella. Rhaella was pregnant, like Dany. I don’t believe Jon was there.

I think Lyanna’s death paralleled Myrcella’s near death experience. The people involved would mirror Arianne and her group, which would be, in my opinion, Cersei as Arianne, Jaime as Arys, and Illyn Payne as Areo Hotah. Arianne was trying to crown Myrcella, and Cersei was trying to prevent one (a crowning). If Lyanna had married Robert, she would be queen.

The baby swap parallel is Rhaegar’s son Aegon versus Mance’s son Aemon. The fake Aegon had his head dashed against a wall, while Mance’s son was removed from the Wall.

I think Jon mirrors Gilly’s son, Monster...a child of incest between a father and daughter, both at the Wall, but I’m not certain Lyanna is Gilly. Ned said Jon’s mother was Wylla, and Wylla kinda looks and sounds like a combo of “why” and “Lyanna”. Gilly thinks the white walkers are coming for her son, while Jon - at the end of Dance- might be dead, but many readers suspect he will be resurrected to a different sort of life.

Edited by Feather Crystal

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
15 minutes ago, Feather Crystal said:

If there was an attempt to resurrect Rhaegar,

Listen, I will make it even more clear:

1. Battle of the Bells

2. Connington is replaced as Hand

3. Aerys send Hightower to find Rhaegar

4. Rhaegar returns with an army

5. Rhaegar dies

6. King's landing 

7. Storm's End

8. Tower of Joy

You are talking about 8. , I am talking about 4.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
7 minutes ago, SirArthur said:

Listen, I will make it even more clear:

1. Battle of the Bells

2. Connington is replaced as Hand

3. Aerys send Hightower to find Rhaegar

4. Rhaegar returns with an army

5. Rhaegar dies

6. King's landing 

7. Storm's End

8. Tower of Joy

You are talking about 8. , I am talking about 4.

How do you know he didn’t accompany Rhaegar to the Trident? Are you using the fever dream as evidence that he wasn’t?  I will again refer you to Dunc’s dream, which was very different than his waking events.

Edited by Feather Crystal

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Sam, Gilly, Mance’s son, and Maester Aemon left the Wall for Oldtown. Maester Aemon grows ill in Braavos, and dies off the coast of Dorne. Sam decides to take Gilly and baby Aemon to Horn Hill so that he can go to Oldtown 

The inverted parallel for these events is the account of the Fisherman’s daughter. Ned either reunites with Lyanna and Maester Walys, or there really was a Wylla, and sails across the Bite to White Harbor. Maester Walys - aka the fisherman - dies, and Ned brings baby Jon with Wylla - a wetnurse from the Manderlys - back to Winterfell to raise as his son. Jon can’t be Rhaegar’s son, because he’s too old - being since he was born before Ned married Catelyn.

Whats really crazy is that the Bael the Bard story is really a story of incest that was blamed on a wilding. This could mean that Jon isn’t a true child of incest, and that his father really was Bael.

If Jon’s father is Mance, it fits in nicely with the Sam/Ned inverted parallel with one son leaving the Wall and the other one stays. The irony is Mance’s two Sons met each other at the Wall!

 

Edited by Feather Crystal

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 7/3/2018 at 3:49 PM, Black Crow said:

I've always been suspicious of the whole Tower of Joy/R+L+J scenario. It seems too obvious and too easy, yet on the other hand out of character. There is certainly a huge question-mark over Jon Snow's true identity but in text it has always revolved around his mother. We are confident that she was Lyanna Stark, but Rhaegar doesn't fit, or rather the assumption that Jon Snow is a lost Targaryen prince isn't borne out by his physical appearance, character or story arc. 

Now something strange and interesting happened once upon a time in Dorne. and I agree that something involved decoys and switching of babies, but who and to what end?

Jon may be a king, but not necessarily a Targaryen one.

And of course the knee jerk assumption is that if there was a child rescued from the tower of joy, it had to have been Jon, because of his central place in the story.  That may or may not be correct.

There are an awful lot of characters in this story, some central some non-central but POV,  that are within one to two years of age with Jon.  Those children born around the time of the rebellion include: Jon, Meera, Sam, Brienne, Robb, Gendry, Young Griff, Quentyn, Loras, Margaery, Danaerys, and perhaps Val (although I'm not certain that her age is ever established)  Then we have other children unmet that seem to have also been born around the time frame, to include the green haired daughter of the Archon of Tyrosh, and Allyria Dayne.  

Out of all of these characters, the only one who's parentage we can be certain of is Robb's, since we're given the POV of Catelyn.  The rest to various degrees aren't firmly established.  The one's I'm most suspicious of, other than Jon, are Gendry, Meera, and Brienne.  Gendry is an obvious question mark, other than the fact that his father is most probably Robert Baratheon.  Brienne's mother is never named, and while Meera's mother is named in an appendix, I find the name Jyanna a tad suspicious.  Of course there is Young Griff, although I think he may be a bit of a red herring.  Any of those characters could have been present at the tower of joy in lieu or in addition to Jon.  We still don't know why House Dayne named their heir after Eddard.  After all, Eddard, or his older brother, allegedly disgraced Ashara and killed the famed Arthur.  It could of course be possible that the child Eddard rescued from the tower was Ashara's.

Another thing to take note of is that the time frame between the start of the rebellion and when we can establish Jon at Winterfell is fairly lengthy.  I've done the math before, and determined that if Lyanna was in fact in the early stages of pregnancy when she disappeared, then there is a sufficient time frame for her to have given birth to two children (or at least have been fairly along in her second pregnancy at the time of her death.  The Battle of the Bells occurs well after the start of the rebellion (and even longer after Lyanna's disappearance) and a full year elapses after the Battle of the Bells and Ned's wedding to Cat, that Cat sees Ned and baby Jon at Winterfell.

Assuming that Lyanna's death bed scene is one of the last event that Ned participates in before he travels to Winterfell, we're probably looking at between a year and a half to two years from Lyanna's disappearance to Ned's return trip to Winterfell.  Enough time for Lyanna to have given birth to a second child after Jon.  

The argument against this, of course, is that Cat seems to be of the opinion that Jon was born after Robb.  But I'm not sure how much we can trust Cat on this, since it is very much to her benefit that everyone believes Robb to be the older child in case there is a succession conflict between Jon and Robb, something that seems to be of great concern to her.  

Of course the rumor in Winterfell is that Jon's mother was Ashara Dayne, and it appears that it was also believed in Winterfell, that Ned's affair with Ashara occurred around the time of the Harrenhal tourney, before Ned was betrothed to Cat and before the death of Brandon.  

Quote

“It was Harwin who rode up beside her, in the end. “Where do you think you’re going, milady? You shouldn’t run off. There are wolves in these woods, and worse things.”
“I’m not afraid,” she said. “That boy Ned said …”
“Aye, he told me. Lady Ashara Dayne. It’s an old tale, that one. I heard it once at Winterfell, when I was no older than you are now.” He took hold of her bridle firmly and turned her horse around. “I doubt there’s any truth to it. But if there is, what of it? When Ned met this Dornish lady, his brother Brandon was still alive, and it was him betrothed to Lady Catelyn, so there’s no stain on your father’s honor. There’s nought like a tourney to make the blood run hot, so maybe some words were whispered in a tent of a night, who can say? Words or kisses, maybe more, but where’s the harm in that? Spring had come, or so they thought, and neither one of them was pledged.”

The idea that Jon may have been conceived during the time when Brandon was still alive does intrigue me quite a bit, because I'm becoming more and more convinced that the secret shame that Eddard keeps even from his wife, is that Jon was born of incest between Brandon and Lyanna.

After all, Jon does appear to be the starkiest Stark around.

Quote

"Lord Eddard Stark is my father," Jon admitted stiffly.

Lannister studied his face.  "Yes," he said.  "I can see it.  You have more of the north in you than your brothers."

"Half brothers," Jon corrected.  He was pleased by the dwarf's comment, but he tried not to let it show.

 

Quote

She might have overlooked a dozen bastards for Ned's sake, so long as they were out of sight.  Jon was never out of sight, and as he grew, he looked more like Ned than any of the trueborn sons she bore him.  Somehow that made it worse.

 

Quote

The boy absorbed that all in silence.  He had the Stark face if not the name:  long, solemn, guarded, a face that gave nothing away.  Whoever his mother had been, she had left little of herself in her son.

 

Quote

"Who's this one now?" Craster said before Jon could go.  "He has the look of a Stark."

 

Quote

Qhorin swung down from his saddle.  "My men are hungry, and our horses require tending."

"They'll all be seen to."

The ranger gave his horse into the care of one of his men and followed.  "You are Jon Snow.  You have your father's look."

Then there are the quotes about Brandon and his blood, my favorite comes from Jaime Lannister:

Quote

Jaime took a swallow, wiped his mouth.  "No doubt Ned wished to spare you.  His young bride, if not quite a maiden.  Well, you wanted truth.  Ask me.  We made a bargain, I can deny you nothing.  Ask."

"Dead is dead."  I do not want to know this.

"Brandon was different from his brother, wasn't he?  He had blood in his veins instead of cold water.  More like me."

"Brandon was nothing like you."

"If you say so..."

And juxtapose that next to the other times that Brandon and blood were discussed:

Quote

Her father sighed.  "Ah, Arya.  You have a wildness in you, child.  'The wolf blood,' my father used to call it.  Lyanna had a touch of it, and my brother Brandon more than a touch.  It brought them both to an early grave."

 

 

Quote

The lantern light in her eyes made them see as if they were afire.  "Brandon was fostered at Barrowton with old Lord Dustin, the father of the one I'd later wed, but he spent most of his time riding the Rills.  He loved to ride.  His little sister took after him in that.  A pair of centaurs, those two...

Brandon was never shy about taking what he wanted.  I am old now, a dried-up thing, too long a widow, but I still remember the look of my maiden's blood on his cock the night he claimed me.  I think Brandon liked the sight as well.  A bloody sword is a beautiful thing, yes.

"The day I learned that Brandon was to marry Catelyn Tully, though ... there was nothing sweet about that pain. he never wanted her, I promise you that.  He told me so, on our last night together...

 

 

Edited by Frey family reunion

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm not sure about the Brandon business, although I certainly wouldn't rule it out, but looking at this business globally there seem to be far too many mysteries swirling around Dorne to treat the doings at the tower in isolation.

For a start, there's that magic sword which is one of Chekhov's guns if ever there was

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Looking at it from outside of the stories one could conclude that GRRM planted all those children with vague parentage to hide R+L=J.

The longer we discuss the books, the sloppier they look.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I think we are trying to overanalyze characters with not so vague parentage and reading too much into it.  I wouldn't be surprised if someone other than Jon has different parents from what is expected, but most everyone's parents are exactly who we expect. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This heresy started off so promising,  about Starks and babes in the woods,  but quickly went back to the TOJ and J=R+L and it's the same things being said without anything new.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We have clues from GRRM something happened in Ashai 10,000 or so years ago that caused the seasons to be out of balance and dragons may have been created there as well.  Not long after,  we have the Long Night and the rise of Valyria.

Westeros is important for 2 reasons.  It stretches farther North than any other know land, and it has the Children of the forest.  We have clues the Children created the Others.

We have the Daynes,  who look like Targaryens, and are told this was how the other Dragon Lords of Valyria looked but not the common people of Valyria.  We have the sword of Chekhov's guns mentioned above, with similarities to Valyrian steel.  We have references that the Others could not stand against Dragon Steel,  even though the long Night was almost 10000 years before the Valyian conquest.

And we have our Stark family,  with their round keep that should be square, mysterious crypts and direwolf friends.

So how does it all fit together?  Or does it?  Is Asshai connected to North of the Wall?  Are the Others connected to the dragons and seasons being off balance?  Are the Starks connected to the Targaryens and the Daynes?  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
5 hours ago, Black Crow said:

I'm not sure about the Brandon business, although I certainly wouldn't rule it out, but looking at this business globally there seem to be far too many mysteries swirling around Dorne to treat the doings at the tower in isolation.

For a start, there's that magic sword which is one of Chekhov's guns if ever there was

Before I switch gears from the Brandon business, I would just like to revisit your question as to just what Jon may be a king of.  We are told early on in the story that before the Starks were lords of the north, they were Kings of the North, and before they were Kings of the North, they were the Kings of Winter.  If GRRM is playing around with the idea of magical bloodlines, then the idea of an incestuous relationship bringing a recessive bloodline back into dominance becomes somewhat interesting.  

Perhaps the purpose of the Bael the Bard story, was to give a historical perspective that there was a break in the paternal lineage of the Starks (and there must always be a Stark in Winterfell).  Which in turn resulted in the Starks losing a magical connection to their forebears which made them "Kings of Winter".  Perhaps  a parallel scenario to the Targaryens losing their connection to their dragons, after they discontinue the process of incestuous relations to keep their bloodlines pure.  

My sneaking suspicion of Dany, is that she isn't the product of incest, because the Targaryen bloodline had long ago been diluted from the pure bloodlines of Aegon and his sisters and they lost the magical gene that enabled them to hatch dragons.  And their incestuous pairings just continued the dragonless royal Targaryen bloodline.  Instead, I suspect that Dany may be the product of a number of disparate offshoots of the bloodline of Aegon and his sisters (Blackfyre, "Plumm", Velaryon, Longwaters) and then later turned over to Viserys as an infant or toddler by the Dornes in an attempt to give him a "sister" to use as a bargaining chip to obtain an army.  (Which perhaps explains Viserys complete disdain of Dany).  

Jon on the other hand, may be a return to the bloodlines of the Starks of old, back in the days when they were Kings of Winter.  Presumably, if this bloodline was diluted over the years, it  might still exist as a recessive trait of the Starks, kept alive because of paternal lineages and the occasional marriages to first cousins, but never reemerging as a dominant trait.  However, if this recessive bloodline was inherited by both Lyanna and Brandon, and if indeed they conceived Jon through a bout of "wolf blood", for the first time in many years, this special bloodline may have reemerged in Jon.

There was a clever connection made by some of the posters many years back, that Lyanna's disappearance may have coincided with the end of the "False Spring" and a return of winter.  The posters likened the abduction of Lyanna by Rhaegar with the abduction of Persephone by Hades, the Greek tale that attempts to explain winter as the season where Persephone was trapped in Hades, and her mother Demeter's despair caused her to forsake her duties as the goddess of agriculture.  

But what if there is an additional explanation of the connection between Lyanna's disappearance and the surprising return of winter?  An explanation that harkens back to the homegrown mythology of this story?  What if winter returned because Brandon and Lyanna's conception of Jon brought about the return of the pure bloodline of the Kings of Winter?  And Lyanna's disappearance may be the result of her running away, because she was raped and impregnated, not by Rhaegar, but her brother Brandon?

And finally,

Quote

Riding through the rainy night, Ned saw Jon Snow's face in front of him, so like a younger version of his own.  If the gods frowned so on bastards, he thought dully, why did they fill men with such lusts?

Quote

For the first time in years, he found himself remembering Rhaegar Targaryen.  He wondered if Rhaegar had frequented brothels; somehow he thought not.

See the disconnect?

Now compare this to Ned's thoughts on Brandon:

Quote

"Ah Arya.  You have a wildness in you child.  'The wolf blood' my father used to call it.  Lyanna had a touch of it, and my brother Brandon more than a touch.  It brought them both to an early grave."

Which of these two would have been considered lustful by Ned?

Edited by Frey family reunion

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
4 hours ago, Frey family reunion said:

 

Which of these two would have been considered lustful by Ned?

Its a good argument and a possible explanation, but one of the reasons for the Babes in the Wood subtitle is that there seems to be a lot of shuffling of the cards, or rather Babes going on and that the rather obvious R+L=J is a red herring diverting attention away from the truth. While I do go along with much of what you're saying and especially about the Kings of Winter connection, we also have Chekhov's gun to consider. Why is that milkglass sword there in the first place?

Something I wonder about is whether the Targaryens are intrusive and that in terms of balance we should be looking at the Starks and the Daynes as the original champions of not Ice and Fire but Winter and Summer and that its the Targaryens and their dragons who upset the balance.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest
This topic is now closed to further replies.

×