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Sly Wren

GRRM Already Told Us the Tower of Joy Backstory: Wrong Joy, No Hiding, and Fight Elsewhere.

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4 hours ago, Rufus Snow said:

Data point: Beric was only 21 at the Hand's Tourney; that makes him 4 or 5 years old at the time of the Harrenhal tourney.

Oh. That would be difficult then. Well, the good fit of the symbols I see must be directing our attention to the, "Robert is slain, but his realm remains. And we defend her," connection. Robert reborn.

 

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On 10/8/2018 at 8:34 AM, Sly Wren said:

Workable--though it would mean Jaime somehow had to hear about this skirmish. . . .

Well, here's another little suggestive detail: when Howland goes to pray to the Green Men for a champion, he says He's going to the "lakeside". We learn much later in the series when Jaime makes his mirror trip that when he left the Harrenhal Tourney he took the little used "lakeside road" in order to avoid traffic on the Kingsroad.

This suggests the possibility that Jaime met Howland at the lakeside and had a discussion, or merely overheard his prayers for a champion.  I don't see why Martin would actually have included this lakeside road thing unless he wanted to make that suggestion, unless a red herring.

Also, from Jaime's POV, he DOES remember being so disillusioned he wanted to rip off his Kingsguard clothes and return to the tournament, but can't because He's a Kingsguard, made the vow.  Everyone would know who he was.

Unless he returns as a Mystery Knight.

Jaime's POV recollections stop before we hear more of his recollections of that journey.  My suggestion is that later that night at the inn after riding away, he remembers Howland's prayers for a champion, which combines with his own wish to return, but he can't unless he's incognito, and the Mystery Knight is born - a champion for Howland, thus the weirwood tree, and a laughing face, his claim to fame defeating the smiling knight, proclaiming his real right to the Kingsguard, not the useful tool against his father Aerys has made him.

But we do know he's willing to take the "law into his own hands" when he attacks Ned outside the brothel, though that attack is for his brother. Still, Jaime likes to be the hero for the underdog, especially when he's idolizing Arthur Dayne.

Ah--so, sort of like Theon and Reek? Maybe.

Yeah, something along those lines. Nice catch!

And we do see him long to be more like Arthur though he thinks he's actually become the Smiling Knight--if I squint, that could be a nod to the split personality.

It's a stretch, but not impossible--we even have him be the one thinking about how to be a good jouster in Feast and how he can't any more.

Yes, and unlike Lyanna, he had already participated (and won, or did well - can't remember, but one of these two) in a tourney at 13, so had every reason to believe he could defeat the three knights without ever having to reveal his identity.

Not sure "everything else" fits--need to know if anyone saw him at King's Landing. If he actually went back.

Well, he did go back I believe, but was likely a little later than might be expected, easily explained by traffic or a thrown horseshoe. Nobody was even expecting him, it was a spur of the moment decision for him to return. I don't know who'd be there to remark on it if he were a day or even two days late. So it's not really a matter if someone saw him in KL that would sink the theory. If someone was accompanying him that never remembered him going back - that might sink it.

And we still have his disappointment at not being in the tourney--he's still sore about that years later. If he'd pulled this off, seems like he might have been less sore. . .. 

I think he's sore about the reasons he was sent back, and those reasons actually continue to dictate his life. Being sent back was his moment of revelation.  That he might have sent a secret 'fuck you' to Aerys after the fact is really just a last ditch and momentary reclamation of himself in light of that greater trauma.

But I'd love it to be Jaime. It would fit nicely with the Smiling Knight/Arthur Dayne binary he sees in his own personality.

I know!

There's something really suggestive about the Lancelot/Elaine romance too, in that she was the daughter of the house who helped Lancelot disguise himself while he was in a nearby castle.

On that mirror journey, Jaime remembers a girl that waved to him near the inn when he was riding back from the tourney.

So you know, I'm left wondering if even Howland knows who his champion was. Because it's possible Jaime merely overheard him, didn't talk to him, and when he decided to go back as the Mystery Knight, he elicited aid from the inn keepers daughter in painting his shield and dressing him up in armour from the inn's lost and found!

Elayne didn't end well, so I will be looking for signs of an innkeeper's daughter's tragic death or dislike of Lannisters.  LOL.  But that remminds me that the Heddles seem a little prominent in the story - will have to take a better look at them.

 

 

Edited by Lady Barbrey

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@Lady Barbrey

Your case for Jaime is getting more and more persuasive - I'll definitely keep it in mind during my current re-read. I'd been pretty wedded to Lyanna as the KotLT on previous run-throughs, but who knows what Jaime clues I may have missed by not looking for them?

The big thing for the Jaime story, I think, would be to have a closer look at any parallels with the time he went back to Harrenhal for Brienne, and it's long enough ago since I last read that section that nothing concrete comes to mind right now...

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33 minutes ago, Rufus Snow said:

@Lady Barbrey

Your case for Jaime is getting more and more persuasive - I'll definitely keep it in mind during my current re-read. I'd been pretty wedded to Lyanna as the KotLT on previous run-throughs, but who knows what Jaime clues I may have missed by not looking for them?

The big thing for the Jaime story, I think, would be to have a closer look at any parallels with the time he went back to Harrenhal for Brienne, and it's long enough ago since I last read that section that nothing concrete comes to mind right now...

There are a few, actually, and it's actually this mirror journey that first suggested Jaime as MK to me.  Then Aerys specifically names him in the World Book.  Because of that, frankly, I think the onus is on us to disprove Jaime, not prove it was him.  And I couldn't disprove him wherever I looked, and the mounting of evidence is actually much more for him than for Lyanna.  So to me, he's using Jaime as red herring away from Lyanna, or vice versa.  It's kind of funny, because forum readers are really invested in Lyanna as MK, and I understand why, but people I know who don't read the forums but are lit majors like me often take it as a given that it was Jaime when I've brought this up.  And that's because on a structural, thematic and allusional level, it should be him, unless you firmly believe that theory that this is how the Rhaegar-Lyanna romance began, which has such little evidence that it's actually non-existent .  Still, Rhaegar did fall in love with Lyanna if the last word he said was her name, so I do understand why people think this Lyanna as MK and Rhaegar following her, etc., might be when that started.  My own contention, however, in my other thread, is that he fell in love with her later, not at the Tourney.

Edited by Lady Barbrey

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10 minutes ago, Lady Barbrey said:

There are a few, actually, and it's actually this mirror journey that first suggested Jaime as MK to me.  Then Aerys specifically names him in the World Book.  Because of that, frankly, I think the onus is on us to disprove Jaime, not prove it was him.  And I couldn't disprove him wherever I looked, and the mounting of evidence is actually much more for him than for Lyanna.  So to me, he's using Jaime as red herring away from Lyanna, or vice versa.  It's kind of funny, because forum readers are really invested in Lyanna as MK, and I understand why, but people I know who don't read the forums but are lit majors like me often take it as a given that it was Jaime when I've brought this up.  And that's because on a structural, thematic and allusional level, it should be him.

Yeah, but... Aerys also suspected Tywin of murdering Steffon Baratheon when his ship sank, and I think we're far enough into Aerys' madness now to be expected to seriously doubt his beliefs. It might be a double bluff on George's part though, I grant that, but I'll admit when I first read that Aerys blamed Jaime, I thought 'He's mad, therefore this is just his paranoia speaking'. It was also something Jaime said that persuaded me that Lyanna could be the MK after all - that comment about jousting being mostly horsemanship. Anyway, it gives me something to juggle as my re-read progresses :thumbsup:

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40 minutes ago, Rufus Snow said:

Yeah, but... Aerys also suspected Tywin of murdering Steffon Baratheon when his ship sank, and I think we're far enough into Aerys' madness now to be expected to seriously doubt his beliefs. It might be a double bluff on George's part though, I grant that, but I'll admit when I first read that Aerys blamed Jaime, I thought 'He's mad, therefore this is just his paranoia speaking'. It was also something Jaime said that persuaded me that Lyanna could be the MK after all - that comment about jousting being mostly horsemanship. Anyway, it gives me something to juggle as my re-read progresses :thumbsup:

For sure, and yet...Aerys had just inducted Jaime into the Kingsguard so knew his approximate size.  If the MK was as short as a crannogmen, would he have thought it was Jaime?

I don't think so.  The tale Meera tells emphasizes short and it emphasizes Stark possible involvement.  But if Howland didn't know who it was, the "short" just means he wanted to give his kids the impression it might have been him, and the emphasis on Starks might be that Howland suspects one of them, just like we do. But the Stark kids, to the Reeds' surprise, did NOT know the tale, so to me that implies that Benjen and Ned didn't tell it because they don't know either, otherwise why not emphasize their Aunt's romantic adventure, or their own, like Howland does with his own kids? Of course, the tournament because of the blue rose crown in light of subsequent events might just be taboo for the Starks so that's not definitive either.

Yandel uses the word "slight" instead, and we have to use that word relative to the full-grown, full-bodied knights at tourneys.  "Slight" in that context might just mean he wasn't overly tall and he was thin as compared to the rest of the knight's. And 15 year old Jaime, who might have been tall for his age but not in comparison to other knights because he wasn't full-grown yet, and I imagine was slender, would fit that bill.  But so would Lyanna.

Anyway, upshot is that while Aerys was mad and paranoid, we aren't told his vision was poor, and it would have to have been if he thought the short MK was Jaime, unless the MK wasn't really short but about the same size as Jaime.

Still I take your point and that's why I too initially dismissed Aerys as just being paranoid, but then again, he could also be right. He also thought the MK would kill him, and if the MK was Jaime, he was right on the money.

Edited by Lady Barbrey

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On 10/1/2018 at 7:07 PM, AlaskanSandman said:

A man who had close proximity to her prior to the Tourney. A man whose custom it is to bride steal and impress by feats of strength. A man whose legends involve stealing a Stark maid and giving a blue rose. A man who came south as a bard and singer. A man, who even his friend/enemy make sure his son is brought to him. A man who will not face his son in Battle due to "Blood". A man who can defeat people who train against 3 men at once. A man very interested in the crypts of Winterfell. A man who would have been a young man at the time. A man not allowed to have a wife, or lands, or a title. A man whose culture doesn't look down on bastards. A man whose best friend also steals and impregnates northern girls south of the wall. A man who is also a bastard. A man who may have met his beloved before near a famous Tower in the North, where another famous girl once was. Another girl who may have been "stolen". A man who's blood may be the only chance the Free Folk have. A man whose blood may be Valyrian. A man of the North. The True North. Where the North Remembers

 

Edit- Let's not forget Mance would have met and known Aemon Targaryen, who kept in regular contact with Rhaegar. Mance fathered by a man from the Wall? Could he be tied to Bloodraven? Another bastard? Aemon chose to go to the wall with Bloodraven, so its not unlikely that Aemon and Bloodraven worked together.

Mance?  This man is of the north.  He's not Valyrian.  I suppose he might have Stark blood in him.  Though it might be more accurate to say the Starks and he both came from the line of Bael The Bard.  

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23 minutes ago, Wm Portnoy said:

Mance?  This man is of the north.  He's not Valyrian.  I suppose he might have Stark blood in him.  Though it might be more accurate to say the Starks and he both came from the line of Bael The Bard.  

You definitely guessed at the centerpiece of the theory @AlaskanSandman was wanting to convey. Since this had enough meat for a topic of its own, he opened a new separate thread to discuss his idea:

 

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3 hours ago, Seams said:

You definitely guessed at the centerpiece of the theory @AlaskanSandman was wanting to convey. Since this had enough meat for a topic of its own, he opened a new separate thread to discuss his idea:

 

I tried to make the post as impartial as possible to my own views, and more open questions, but i may need to reword it. Idk, some have gotten pretty hung up on my theories from other threads, which i tried to keep out of this one, but maybe i didn't word things well enough. 

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3 hours ago, Wm Portnoy said:

Mance?  This man is of the north.  He's not Valyrian.  I suppose he might have Stark blood in him.  Though it might be more accurate to say the Starks and he both came from the line of Bael The Bard.  

 

Quote

If you want to figure out a family's descent, the names are a better clue than the eyes. Houses descended from the First Men tend to have simple short names, often descriptive. Stark. Reed. Flint. Tallhart (tall hart). Etc. The Valyrian names are fairly distinct are well: The "ae" usage usually suggests a Valyrian in the family tree. The Andal names are . . . well, neith Stark nor Targaryen, if that makes sense. Lannister. Arryn. Tyrell. Etc. Of course, you also need to remember that there have been hundreds and in some cases thousands of years of interbreeding, so hardly anyone is pure Andal or First Man.

https://archive.is/St3S6#selection-3713.1-3717.252

 

Quote

A Clash of Kings - Jon III

"Wildlings have invaded the realm before." Jon had heard the tales from Old Nan and Maester Luwin both, back at Winterfell. "Raymun Redbeard led them south in the time of my grandfather's grandfather, and before him there was a king named Bael the Bard."

"Aye, and long before them came the Horned Lord and the brother kings Gendel and Gorne, and in ancient days Joramun, who blew the Horn of Winter and woke giants from the earth. Each man of them broke his strength on the Wall, or was broken by the power of Winterfell on the far side

A Storm of Swords - Jon III

"Aye," said Ygritte. "Together with his brother Gendel, three thousand years ago. They led a host o' free folk through the caves, and the Watch was none the wiser. But when they come out, the wolves o' Winterfell fell upon them."

The World of Ice and Fire - The Wall and Beyond: The Wildlings

The brothers Gendel and Gorne were joint kings three thousand years ago. Leading their host down beneath the earth into a labyrinth of twisting subterranean caverns, they passed beneath the Wall unseen to attack the North. Gorne slew the Stark king in battle, then was killed in turn by the king's heir, and Gendel and his remaining wildlings fled back to their caverns, never to been seen again.
The Horned Lord would follow them, a thousand years after (or perhaps two). His name is lost to history, but he was said to have used sorcery to pass the Wall. After him, centuries later, came Bael the Bard, 
 
 
 

Mance Rayder                   - 300Ac

 
Raymund Red Beard         - 226 Ac
 
Bael the Bard                     - Some time after Andals but before Targaryens? 13-1400BC or 500-400Bc?
 
And Long before them.
 
The Horned Lord               - 1700Bc or 700 Bc (only centuries before Bael)
 
Gendle and Gorne           - 2700Bc
 
And In Ancient Days.
 
Joramun                            - Unknown.
 
 
Quote

The World of Ice and Fire - The North: The Kings of Winter

Even before the coming of the Andals, the Wolf's Den had been raised by King Jon Stark, built to defend the mouth of the White Knife against raiders and slavers from across the narrow sea (some scholars suggest these were early Andal incursions, whilst others argue they were the forebears of the men of Ib, or even slavers out of Valyria and Volantis).
Toss in Hardhome and Valyria taking Dragonstone and you get the bases of my idea regarding Valyrian blood in the North both above the Wall and in House Stark. 
 
More things like "Kissed by Fire" i think are further clues. 
Edited by AlaskanSandman

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@Sly Wren

You always create interesting topics. Skål.

@Seams Something for your wordplaying.

It's kind of funny. Porcupines are named Pigsvin in Swedish. 'Pig' translates to 'peg', but is rarely used and 'svin' of course is the same word as schwein in german or the English swine. But when we talk about pigs in Sweden nowdays we usually use the word 'gris'.
 

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1 hour ago, Ser Rhoddry of The Hill said:

@Seams Something for your wordplaying.

It's kind of funny. Porcupines are named Pigsvin in Swedish. 'Pig' translates to 'peg', but is rarely used and 'svin' of course is the same word as schwein in german or the English swine. But when we talk about pigs in Sweden nowdays we usually use the word 'gris'.

Interesting. So the word for pig evolved, but the word for porcupine didn't change. I guess that's how language works sometimes.

Maybe when I get some time, I will recruit some bright minds to help create a "pig and boar" re-read thread. Go through and hit every pig and bacon reference in the series, until we truly understand what GRRM is trying to tell us with pigs!

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7 minutes ago, Seams said:

Interesting. So the word for pig evolved, but the word for porcupine didn't change. I guess that's how language works sometimes.

Maybe when I get some time, I will recruit some bright minds to help create a "pig and boar" re-read thread. Go through and hit every pig and bacon reference in the series, until we truly understand what GRRM is trying to tell us with pigs!

Some words are shared by all languages, like fire.

Edit- I believe there are 10 shared words. Can't find where i read that now so idk. 

Edited by AlaskanSandman

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8 hours ago, Seams said:

truly understand what GRRM is trying to tell us with pigs!

I really hope there's more to it than 'Oh dear, been writitng all night, I rather fancy a bacon butty...' :D

(TBH been looking at anagrams of Robert Baratheon, which nicely includes 'boar' and 'throne', but I have yet to find anything insightful there...)

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10 hours ago, AlaskanSandman said:

Some words are shared by all languages, like fire.

Edit- I believe there are 10 shared words. Can't find where i read that now so idk. 

There are many shared words (or words with common roots) but that is not the topic of this thread. Let's try to stay on topic.

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On 10/10/2018 at 5:29 AM, AlaskanSandman said:
Toss in Hardhome and Valyria taking Dragonstone and you get the bases of my idea regarding Valyrian blood in the North both above the Wall and in House Stark. 
 
More things like "Kissed by Fire" i think are further clues. 

Just a few things, Valyria was founded some 5000 years ago, but it was only 1000 years ago(700 bc) their conflicts with the Rhoynar was finally resolved in the second spice war. Valyrian interactions with the 7K goes back only 500 years as far as we know, to the time where lords left and right started to buy VS weapons.

So any interactions with Hardhome must have occured around that time at earliest.

This doesn't necessarily mean there are no blood connections though; A year or so ago I have proposed that Valyrians are closely related to First Men, or at least had contact with them basing it on the 10000 year old house Dayne, some features shared by both "races" and that the migration path of First Men is just north of the peninsula.

there's also the analogy of the horse riding and sheep herding "cousins". Dothraki are the horseriding primitive barbarians whereas their close relatives Lhazareen are a sheepherding peaceful folk. It's the same with the early First men who were barbaric horse riding warriors and early Valyrians the peaceful shepherds.

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On October 8, 2018 at 8:33 PM, Seams said:

Porcupines are not the same as hedgehogs, of course, but I include them because, aside from the quills, pork + pine may be another combination that GRRM wants to put before the reader. This would use the pig allusion again, but perhaps in combination with pine trees. That would lead us to recall that pine trees have needles, as do people who do embroidery along with Arya Stark and her unique sword, Needle. It might also tie into the sharp / shaggy theme that GRRM has included as a subset of his large hair / heir motif.

More needles.

Interesting--we may be way down the rabbit hole, but I'm wondering about a potential tie to the sentinel pines in the novels: they are in the Winterfell godswood. They are in the prologue--Will hides in one.

I've seen the idea offered elsewhere that the sentinels' needles  echo Arya's Needle. We are probably way off too far into free-association-mode. . . but it could be interesting. . . 

On October 8, 2018 at 8:33 PM, Seams said:

You point out that all three of the Houses defeated by the Knight of the Laughing Tree participated in the surprise attack on Robb Stark and his bannermen at the Red Wedding. I came up with a tiny anagram possibility that might support the idea the victories of the KotLT were no more and no less than a set-up for the Red Wedding:

Haigh + Blount + Frey = Ignoble hath fury

The anagram might be just a coincidence, but I find that GRRM uses anagrams fairly often with names of obscure knights. And this one fits so many details of what we know will happen with those three Houses. He didn't have to give us any names of the bullies, if the point of the story was just to show the bond between House Reed and House Stark. He chose a House that plays a big role but paired it with two relatively obscure names for reasons we have not been able to discover. If the anagram is correct, the sigil symbolism I so tortuously tried to examine (above) may be either beside the point or constructed afterward to fit other plot points or sets of symbols that connect to other moments in the plot.

I like it--though I'm predisposed to agree since I think the three defeated knights are a clue to what happened with Lyanna. .  . so my judgment may be faulty.

On October 8, 2018 at 8:33 PM, Seams said:

"Ignoble" can mean "not honorable in character or purpose," which exactly describes the three squires in their treatment of the little crannogman. Of course, the KotLT insists that the defeated knights teach their squires honor, so there we see a command to counteract ignobility.

Yup! And they go on to be very ignoble knights/fighters. 

On October 8, 2018 at 8:33 PM, Seams said:

Since the Red Wedding massacre is inflicted on House Stark, I believe the "fury" of the ignoble houses is directed at House Stark because of the "defeat" delivered by Lyanna to the squires, not the victory of the mystery knight over the knights. Readers suspect Lyanna of being the mystery knight because GRRM may want us to focus on the unmasked, openly acknowledged victory she already delivered. On the other hand, if the KotLT was someone other than Lyanna, it might be that there is a "Part II" of the ignoble fury that has not yet been delivered.

1. I agree that the attack on the Starks was likely tied to the defeat of the squires--though I think the squire fight and the jousting go together: the knights would be the ones humiliated in front of everyone, being told to teach their squires honor at the greatest tourney in a generation. In front of King and Crown Prince.

2. But if the Knight of the Laughing Tree was someone other than Lyanna, the defeated knights and squires would still have reason to think the defeat was tied to the Starks--might want revenge regardless. Boris Blount isn't big on finesse--might just hit whatever he could find.

3. This is one of the reasons I think the three defeated knights might have been used to kidnap/try to kill Lyanna. Only to have Rhaegar later framed for it. . . but that's for another thread/

On October 8, 2018 at 8:33 PM, Seams said:

I should add, I am willing to be persuaded by @Lady Barbrey's Jaime = KotLT logic in this thread. I think that would be a really interesting possibility. Jaime struggles with the choice between honor and glory (his two horses). If he was the mystery knight at Harrenhal, it means he joined the King's Guard and then immediately defied an order from the King to go back to King's Landing. So he would not be acting honorably, but he would be preaching honor to the defeated knights and their squires. Delicious irony.

And it would fit with Jaime's character and age--he wants to be honorable, but doesn't always think things all the way through.

On October 8, 2018 at 8:33 PM, Seams said:

When GRRM describes the maid with the laughing purple eyes dancing with a string of partners, I think we are supposed to see them as people she defeats in a jousting match. Perhaps it is left for us to guess whether she defeats the quiet wolf in the last dance, or whether he is the victor in that match.

I like this! I see Ashara as potentially being a bit like Mel, and maybe a bit like Lysa--trying to be a political player. Your ideas could work well with my flights of fancy.

On October 8, 2018 at 8:33 PM, Seams said:

If the Harrenhal Tourney is similarly intended to foreshadow the outcomes for Rhaegar, his fate is not exactly like any of the victors or losers at Ashford Meadow. There might be some similarities to Prince Valarr, son of Prince Baelor and second in line for the throne at Ashford Meadow. Prince Valarr challenges only weak knights who don't seem to pose much of a challenge for a young man. Since two of Rhaegar's three opponents are members of the King's Guard who are not supposed to harm any members of the royal family, you could make a case that the jousting matches described for the reader are not very challenging for Rhaegar, or that the outcome is a foregone conclusion. I know that Ser Barristan doesn't indicate that he threw the match, but we do know that he was a very dutiful member of the white cloaks. On the other hand, Barristan did defeat Rhaegar at a tourney at Storm's End some years earlier.

I like it--and I, too, think there's a good chance Barristan threw his match. He says he wishes he'd ben a better knight--not a better fighter. A better knight. Losing in a joust is not "unknightly"--so, what did he do that was unknightly? It's only a hint, but your points above seems to fit with that idea. And Rhaegar could easily have persuaded Arthur to go easy on him, if the cause was right.

On October 8, 2018 at 8:33 PM, Seams said:

Arthur Dayne is The Sword of the Morning. Does his defeat by Rhaegar represent Rhaegar conquering morning? Dawn?

This is something I've been playing with for a while, largely with @Voice. Voice argues (and I agree) that the Others returned when a Stark of Winterfell (Ned) killed a Sword of the Morning (Arthur)--Night's King killing Day's King.

But I've wondered if the problem doesn't go back further: what business does the Sword of the Morning have fighting for the dragons--the conquerors? The Night's King was a conqueror--and had to be put down. The Sword of the Morning really seems like he should not be in service to Aerys or even to Rhaegar, given Rhaegar's plans to overthrow his father. 

I don't know if the symbolism at the tourney shows Rhaegar defeating Dawn. But I do think the idea that Arthur was beaten by and maybe threw his fight to Rhaegar might be telling. . . 

On October 8, 2018 at 8:33 PM, Seams said:

Maybe that's the symbolism: Rhaegar first defeats Brandon Stark. The Starks are symbolic kings of the underworld in a lot of ways, with their children playing in a crypt and the life-like images of Stark Lords presiding there. So Rhaegar might be symbolically taking the title or role of Lord of the Underworld when he defeats Brandon. Then he defeats morning / dawn and then he defeats death / the Stranger. Then he awards the blue roses to Lyanna - it is very much a Hades / Persephone situation - I know I'm not the first to point that out in this forum.

Nice.

On October 8, 2018 at 8:33 PM, Seams said:

Ned later tells Robert that Lyanna belonged in Winterfell and/or the Winterfell crypt, not buried on a sunny hillside that Robert would have preferred. So wouldn't the Starks have found it appropriate if Rhaegar wanted Lyanna to be the queen of the Underworld? Maybe the anger was that Brandon saw that as his birthright, not a title to be awarded to his baby sister. Ironically, they end up together in the crypt, along with their father.

I like the symbolism--but does Brandon strike you as being that. . . poetic?

On October 8, 2018 at 8:33 PM, Seams said:

This is somewhat stream-of-consciousness and unpolished, but I have to end it for the time being.

Amazing work! My apologies for the delay in responding.

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On October 9, 2018 at 2:32 PM, Lady Barbrey said:

Well, here's another little suggestive detail: when Howland goes to pray to the Green Men for a champion, he says He's going to the "lakeside". We learn much later in the series when Jaime makes his mirror trip that when he left the Harrenhal Tourney he took the little used "lakeside road" in order to avoid traffic on the Kingsroad.

This suggests the possibility that Jaime met Howland at the lakeside and had a discussion, or merely overheard his prayers for a champion.  I don't see why Martin would actually have included this lakeside road thing unless he wanted to make that suggestion, unless a red herring

I could buy Jaime overhearing. . . struggling to see him chatting with the crannogman. . . .

And good catch on the lakeside. Though it is a really big lake. . . 

On October 9, 2018 at 2:32 PM, Lady Barbrey said:

Also, from Jaime's POV, he DOES remember being so disillusioned he wanted to rip off his Kingsguard clothes and return to the tournament, but can't because He's a Kingsguard, made the vow.  Everyone would know who he was.

Unless he returns as a Mystery Knight.

Jaime's POV recollections stop before we hear more of his recollections of that journey.  My suggestion is that later that night at the inn after riding away, he remembers Howland's prayers for a champion, which combines with his own wish to return, but he can't unless he's incognito, and the Mystery Knight is born - a champion for Howland, thus the weirwood tree, and a laughing face, his claim to fame defeating the smiling knight, proclaiming his real right to the Kingsguard, not the useful tool against his father Aerys has made him.

Nice!

On October 9, 2018 at 2:32 PM, Lady Barbrey said:

Yes, and unlike Lyanna, he had already participated (and won, or did well - can't remember, but one of these two) in a tourney at 13, so had every reason to believe he could defeat the three knights without ever having to reveal his identity.

Agreed.

On October 9, 2018 at 2:32 PM, Lady Barbrey said:

I think he's sore about the reasons he was sent back, and those reasons actually continue to dictate his life. Being sent back was his moment of revelation.  That he might have sent a secret 'fuck you' to Aerys after the fact is really just a last ditch and momentary reclamation of himself in light of that greater trauma.

Hmmm. . . . maybe. Seems like he might feel more gratified, though, if he'd pulled this off. We see him enjoying his small conquests in the story. If Harrenhal had ended for him with a knightly act, might be less bitter. Compared to how he is over the death of Aerys--a knightly act (saving the city) that got completely misconstrued. If he's fought for Howland, seems like he'd feel less bitter. . . . maybe.

On October 9, 2018 at 2:32 PM, Lady Barbrey said:

There's something really suggestive about the Lancelot/Elaine romance too, in that she was the daughter of the house who helped Lancelot disguise himself while he was in a nearby castle.

On that mirror journey, Jaime remembers a girl that waved to him near the inn when he was riding back from the tourney.

So you know, I'm left wondering if even Howland knows who his champion was. Because it's possible Jaime merely overheard him, didn't talk to him, and when he decided to go back as the Mystery Knight, he elicited aid from the inn keepers daughter in painting his shield and dressing him up in armour from the inn's lost and found!

Elayne didn't end well, so I will be looking for signs of an innkeeper's daughter's tragic death or dislike of Lannisters.  LOL.  But that remminds me that the Heddles seem a little prominent in the story - will have to take a better look at them.

I'm liking this. Especially the idea that Howland never knew who did it. Or that he guessed wrong, thinking it was the Starks.

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On October 11, 2018 at 6:05 PM, Ser Rhoddry of The Hill said:

@Sly Wren

You always create interesting topics. Skål.

:cheers:

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