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A continuity error regarding Jonothor Darry?

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In Chapter 16, Jaime is having flashbacks to when King Aerys burned Qarlton Chelsted alive and then raped Rhaella while Jaime and Jonothor Darry were outside his chambers. I thought Jonothor Darry was KIA at the Battle of the Trident, before Aerys burned Chelsted.

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Chelsted dies just before Rhaegar goes to the Trident. It seems that Rhaegar was busy rallying and preparing a new military force to confront Robert after he came back following the Battle of the Bells, and so he did not see the stuff that made Chelsted suspicious. Chelsted confronted Aerys and was killed, and Aerys made Rossart Hand, and this is doubtless the sort of thing that made Rhaegar talk to Jaime as he did on the day he left for the Trident.

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14 minutes ago, The Wondering Wolf said:

But Rossart is stated to have been Hand for two weeks. If he had been appointed before Rhaegar left KL, he would have been Hand for around a month.

Well, fortnight may be a bit of sarcastic rounding.

The other alternative is that Jaime is misrecalling which person's burning led to what he heard. Could have been after the Starks or some such. And now as I recall, TWoIaF must mean Jaime is misremembering.

Edited by Ran

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Hm. The Starks were burned one year before, so I am not sure what Jaime could have confused. Or do you mean Aerys raping Rhaella and Jaime and Darry guarding the door might have happened after Rickard's and Brandon's death instead after Chelsted's?

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26 minutes ago, The Wondering Wolf said:

Hm. The Starks were burned one year before, so I am not sure what Jaime could have confused. Or do you mean Aerys raping Rhaella and Jaime and Darry guarding the door might have happened after Rickard's and Brandon's death instead after Chelsted's?

Doesn't seem impossible. And there's no way that Aerys didn't burn anyone else between Lord Stark and Chelsted.

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I remember this issue bothered the fandom for a while now. So you think the timeline was like:

Somewhen 282 AC: Brandon and Rickard are killed, the night after Aerys rapes Rhaella and Darry teaches Jaime an unpleasant lesson. 

Somewhen 283 AC: Aerys burns Chelsted and appoints Rossart Hand immediately after that. Rhaegar is there at that time and tells Jaime about his plans a day or two later. Then he leaves for the Trident (around two weeks march) and dies, the rebells go to KL (another two weeks) and Rossart is killed during the sack after serving as Hand for around a month.

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Or the third scenario, someone we don't know who died at Aerys's command after Rickard and Brandon but before Chelsted.

TWoIaF doesn't mention the fortnight detail that Tyrion claims, but I admit I can't recall everything about the discussions around that chapter of the book off hand. I think we must have pointed out the issue and it was sorted out as I said initially, that Rossart was around for a bit longer than Tyrion claims in ACoK.

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I favor the idea that Jaime is wrong about Darry being there when Chelsted was burnt. There is no way Aerys II would have not named Rossart his Hand immediately after that, but if Rhaegar was not yet gone to the Trident when Chelsted confronted Aerys about the wildfire plan - how on earth can we believe Chelsted did not go to Rhaegar to add his voice to his own when he tried to reason with the Mad King?

And how is it that Rhaegar did not insist he be named Hand after Chelsted's death, how is it that he did not inquire why the man was killed, how is it that Jaime didn't tell him - or try to tell him? Jaime is consumed by guilt because he allowed his father's men to murder Rhaegar's children - would that be the case if Jaime had known that Aerys II planned to kill everyone, Rhaegar's family included, before he took his leave from Rhaegar?

Jaime may have known that the pyromancers were making wildfire at that time, but not necessarily what he intended to do with the wildfire.

Even the idea that the wildfire was already delivered while Rhaegar was still there is not that convincing - Aerys and Rhaegar would have still believed they could win the war. Preparing for the worst at this point, yes, but actually taking steps to implement the plan? Not all that likely. That would be for the fortnight after the Trident.

Finally, I'm pretty sure the Chelsted burning and subsequent rape is supposed to be night of Dany's conception. Aerys being all that worked up about having burned someone is well and good (or rather ugly and disgusting) but making it a burning about the wildfire plot adds another fiery level to the whole thing, something that may be rather adequate a symbol for the conception of the Unburnt and Mother of Dragons..

It is pretty clear that Aerys must have burned quite a few people during the Rebellion, and if Aerys raping Rhaella afterwards became a pattern, too, then it is quite clear that those events would have bled into each other in the memory of 17-year-old on guard duty recalling those things over 15 years later.

In that sense, the best way to make sense of this thing would be:

Darry-Jaime conversation after some other guy was burned, Chested being burned after Rhaegar left for the Trident, either before or after the battle of the Trident.

I'd say Rhaegar would have left KL more than a month before the Sack. Ned effectively raced to KL after the Trident, yet there are two weeks between the Trident and the Sack, and Rhaegar had a much larger army than Ned - meaning his march to the Trident would have taken longer than Ned's race to KL with a smaller host.

That is too much of a discrepancy to be easily reconciled.

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Given Aerys's paranoia, Rhaegar not being Hand is not weird, especially if he was not in KL at that precise moment. And Chelsted going it alone rather than trying to recruit Rhaegar is not strange, since he went it alone rather than trying to recruit the small council or even informing them (we can guess Varys knew all along, but Pycelle is not the sort of person who would have left piles of wildfire under the city for his own safety, if nothing else; and the rest of the small council, as well, I can't imagine they all left to fight with Rhaegar.)

For whatever reason, Chelsted got wind of it while Rhaegar was busy preparing to march, and impulsively went to Aerys, was burned for his trouble, and the chain of office was around Rossart's neck before Rhaegar knew what was going on. And if he asked why Chelsted burned, just another traitor, says Aerys.

Edited by Ran

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8 hours ago, Ran said:

Given Aerys's paranoia, Rhaegar not being Hand is not weird, especially if he was not in KL at that precise moment.

But he would have been in the surrounding area, no? If he wasn't miles and miles away Rhaegar should have received the news about the fall and death of the King's Hand rather quickly...

And Jaime describes Chelsted growing suspicious as a process, telling us he watched the king talk to often behind closed doors with the pyromancers. That would give Chelsted more than enough time to contact Rhaegar before confronting Aerys. This was not a spur of the moment idea, rather one the man would have postponed again and again until it was clear that Aerys did indeed want to burn the entire city - and that would have happened only after the Trident, one assumes.

The other problem there is that a paranoid Aerys wouldn't give command of the Targaryen army to Rhaegar, no? In that capacity Rhaegar was already much more powerful than any puppet Hand from a no-name house could ever hope to be, be he Chelsted or Rossart (or even Connington, who was already a stand-in for Rhaegar).

If Aerys risked giving the command of the army to Rhaegar - and even allowed his son to train the men which essentially means they would be Rhaegar's men, loyal to him more than the king - then it is odd that he would not also consider naming him the Hand - not to mention that it would be odd if Rhaegar did not demand the Handship himself.

8 hours ago, Ran said:

And Chelsted going it alone rather than trying to recruit Rhaegar is not strange, since he went it alone rather than trying to recruit the small council or even informing them (we can guess Varys knew all along, but Pycelle is not the sort of person who would have left piles of wildfire under the city for his own safety, if nothing else; and the rest of the small council, as well, I can't imagine they all left to fight with Rhaegar.)

Oh, well, we don't know whether Lucerys Velaryon was in the city at that time - as commander of the fleet he could have been away. And since no Stauntons appear in the main series I'd not be surprised if Lord Staunton had been one of the men Aerys had burned during the Rebellion for some reason - along with his entire family.

And what Pycelle did not know or not is rather open at this point. Perhaps his decision for Tywin at the Sack had also to do with things he suspected or knew about the wildfire thing - although I think it is clear he did not know all the details.

8 hours ago, Ran said:

For whatever reason, Chelsted got wind of it while Rhaegar was busy preparing to march, and impulsively went to Aerys, was burned for his trouble, and the chain of office was around Rossart's neck before Rhaegar knew what was going on. And if he asked why Chelsted burned, just another traitor, says Aerys.

The appointment of Rossart smells like a last ditch effort. It is an appointment done while Targaryen power is eroding, while the only person the king felt he could really count upon was the guy he charged with burning his capital.

This is not an appointment made while a Targaryen army outnumbering the rebels marched against the enemy.

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Decided to revisit the quote, and there's simply no argument:

Quote

 The queen's eyes had been closed for years, and Rhaegar was busy marshaling an army.

Jaime places Rhaegar being busy as being why he did not know what was going on and why Chelsted didn't turn to him.

My guess is that Chelsted was so incredulous as to his own suspicion about what was going on that he went straight to Aerys to clear things up, and then discovered to his mounting horror his suspicion was right. And since he was so incredulous, he pushed the point rather than shutting up and going to others to raise the alarm. By the time Chelsted burned, it seems like Jon Darry was around (probably Barristan too, assuming they both returned together from collecting the remnants of Connington's army) but Rhaegar was still away. 

Aerys was a mad man, and attempting to use logic for his actions are useless. He appointed Rossart because he was his favorite, and he was his favorite because he was a yes man who shared his love of fire.

Edited by Ran

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@Ran

The continuity problem does not come from Jaime's quote as such but from the fortnight Rossart supposedly served as Hand.

People have trying to rectify that by suggesting that there was no Hand for a considerable time until Aerys appointed Rossart, but considering the reason Chelsted was burned it does not seem convincing to me that Aerys would not have immediately thrown the chain of office to Rossart (who happened to burn his predecessor, most likely).

And the overall time frame there doesn't necessarily force us to believe Rhaella and Rhaegar were there/cared about the final stages of the wildfire plan - it works just as fine if we Rhaegar being at court, occasionally, after his return from the south, and not being able to investigate things there would have gone on for some time until Chelsted eventually found out - which could have been after Rhaegar had left for good.

Symbolically, Aerys making a no-name guy his last Hand is a representation of the erosion of power. Rossart is like the last guys hanging out/sticking to Nero, and there is also a symbolic decline in prestige in Tywin > Merryweather > Connington > Chelsted >Rossart.

One can compare that to Stannis naming Alester Florent his Hand while the campaign went well, and him naming Davos after his (nearly complete) defeat. You only turn to some close confidant and friend who is not worthy of such a high office by birth and upbringing when it really no longer matters. And that was the case when Aerys named the guy who was in charge of killing them all.

I mean, honestly, do we believe the wildfire was shipped across the city before the Trident? Do we think Aerys wanted to burn himself, his city, and everybody his ancestors had built while there was still a good chance that he would win?

I don't think so. And the mere production of wildfire doesn't mean the wildfire plot. Chelsted could only figure 'the plan' out if he actually learned that wildfire was stored at key locations in the city. And from what we can deduce from both the Aerys-Rossart vision and Jaime's memory of their exchange indicates the command to actually burn the city was only given after the Trident, not before.

Quote

The sight had filled him with disquiet, reminding him of Aerys Targaryen and the way a burning would arouse him. A king has no secrets from his Kingsguard. Relations between Aerys and his queen had been strained during the last years of his reign. They slept apart and did their best to avoid each other during the waking hours. But whenever Aerys gave a man to the flames, Queen Rhaella would have a visitor in the night. The day he burned his mace-and-dagger Hand, Jaime and Jon Darry had stood at guard outside her bedchamber whilst the king took his pleasure. "You're hurting me," they had heard Rhaella cry through the oaken door. "You're hurting me." In some queer way, that had been worse than Lord Chelsted's screaming. "We are sworn to protect her as well," Jaime had finally been driven to say. "We are," Darry allowed, "but not from him."

Jaime had only seen Rhaella once after that, the morning of the day she left for Dragonstone. The queen had been cloaked and hooded as she climbed inside the royal wheelhouse that would take her down Aegon's High Hill to the waiting ship, but he heard her maids whispering after she was gone. They said the queen looked as if some beast had savaged her, clawing at her thighs and chewing on her breasts. A crowned beast, Jaime knew.

If we assume Jaime's memory is correct, then a knight of the Kingsguard did not see the queen of the Seven Kingdoms for weeks or months after the burning of Lord Chelsted, depending when exactly this took place (if it happened while Rhaegar was still training men it could have been months). That stretches credibility to no small extent. And the author does play with the memories of his characters. Jaime remembering things that took place over 15 years ago when he was still seventeen and under a lot of stress allows for some errors.

Especially if he found himself into such situations rather often. Both the burnings of traitors and the nightly visits did take place repeatedly.

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9 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

@Ran

The continuity problem does not come from Jaime's quote as such but from the fortnight Rossart supposedly served as Hand.

Which I already noted is a detail said only once in the ASoIaF novels, by Tyrion in a context that might permit him some sarcasm.

9 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

 

If we assume Jaime's memory is correct, then a knight of the Kingsguard did not see the queen of the Seven Kingdoms for weeks or months after the burning of Lord Chelsted, depending when exactly this took place (if it happened while Rhaegar was still training men it could have been months).

We don't need to assume "months". One can just about fit it into a month's timeline, if Rhaegar was on the verge of going, etc. And this doesn't strike me as odd as all, that after being savaged by Aerys she kept to her apartments or her wing of the castle with her ladies and refused to be seen. 

That said, dug around more in the emails with Anne and George, and I see that we did in fact stick with Rossart being made Hand after the Trident... but it is not explcitly coupled with the date of Chelsted's death. That is, the solution we struck upon is that Chelsted was killed and for a period of time there was no Hand until the Trident, when Aerys appointed Rossart. Presumably this was part and parcel of Aerys's conflict with his son, that he refused to name him (perhaps he dangled it in front of him if he won against Robert) or anyone else, and only chose a Hand when Rhaegar was dead.

So I'm fairly comfortable with placing Chelsted's death just before Rhaegar rode to the Trident, with all the same arguments above, given that the only reason to believe it happened after is the natural but unsupported assumption that Rossart was appointed immediately after Chelsted.

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@Ran

I guess one can do that, but if you ask me Jaime misremembering would work much better - first, it would add more realism (Sansa twists the name of a sword she saw two years ago, but Jaime - not exactly the sharpest knife in the box nor the most perceptive of men - is supposed to correctly remember things that happened over one and a half decade ago?

And then there is the fact that the vacancy in the Handship created by this solution is, as I see it, just another problem, one should not just more or less ignore.

As Hand, Rossart would speak with the King's Voice, which most likely was both necessarily and/or at least very helpful in actually getting the wildfire to the places where it was supposed to be. The King's Hand might be able to do stuff in/beneath the Great Sept much easier than humble Rossart the alchemist, and the fact that the whole thing remained a secret sort of implies Aerys did not sent other men of high office or high birth with Rossart to help him open doors, etc. But with the chain of the Hand around his neck Rossart would have essentially have the same or nearly the same authority as the king himself. In that position one can see many people who saw or heard what Rossart and his minions were doing staying away from them, being content that they were doing 'the king's business'. But this would have been much harder if done by a man who didn't have that high office yet.

If we assume most of the wildfire plan was actually implemented after Chelsted was death, then Aerys and Rossart would have been completely stupid to not name Rossart after Chelsted was dead.

And if Aerys later wanted to make Rhaegar Hand - he could have just dismissed Rossart in favor of his son. After all, Rossart was a nobody with no house or vassals or allies who could be wroth with the king if their man were treated unfairly.

But this actually touches on another subject we don't know much about - the relationship between Rhaegar and Aerys after Rhaegar's return from the south. We don't know why Rhaegar did what he did as of yet, and whether he commanded his father's armies voluntarily or under pressure, nor whether Aerys had stopped seeing his son as a potential traitor or not. I don't think it is wise to use speculation about that relationship as a possible explanation for this (apparent) vacancy in the office of the Hand. Not to mention that if Aerys kept the office vacant he could have just given it to Rhaegar - after all, Rhaegar's death would have then created another vacancy, allowing Rossart to become the next Hand.

I'm not sure whether you like that approach more than the thing you have come up with, but I really think 'blaming Jaime' would be the better solution, especially since it would be another fine moment for the 'unreliable narrator' thing.

As for Rhaella:

Keep in mind that Jaime was the only KG in KL after Rhaegar left. He was the man in charge not only of the king's protection but the entire royal family's. During the Sack he is even in charge of the defense of the castle, which implies he is effectively the acting Lord Commander. And that makes it very odd that he should not have checked on the queen occasionally, especially after another one of Aerys' burnings - which likely continued to take place after Chelsted burned and Rhaegar left.

Edited by Lord Varys

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Quote

Sansa twists the name of a sword she saw two years ago

Yes. This is not weird at all. I can forget the name of a _person_ I met and had a chat with a couple of days earlier, why in the world would Sansa somehow be sure to remember the name a boy gave to a sword that does not belong to her, does not matter to her, was promptly lost anyways and so isn't around, and which was only named in her hearing a couple of times? Be reasonable.

Quote

but Jaime - not exactly the sharpest knife in the box nor the most perceptive of men - is supposed to correctly remember things that happened over one and a half decade ago?

Given the circumstances of a deeply memorable event in which Jaime is very clearly recalling an exchange he had with Darry, an exchange that played a role in his ultimate disaffection with being a Kingsguard knight, there's no chance he's made a mistake. This is not Sansa wishfully dreaming up a kiss from the Hound, nor is it Barristan, an old man, muddling details of one of the hundred of tourneys he must have taken part in his life. It's an exceptionally important conversation for Jaime.


If the Queen does not want to be seen, Jaime would have interacted with her chief ladies just fine. So long as he knows she's in the Red Keep, her safety isn't a question. 

Edited by Ran

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On 10/30/2018 at 9:32 AM, Ran said:

Which I already noted is a detail said only once in the ASoIaF novels, by Tyrion in a context that might permit him some sarcasm.

Since the fortnight seems to fit so very well with all the other times we see people (whether large groups or small) travel from  to the Trident, I have wondered for quite some time: Is it possible that some time passed between Chelsted's death and Rossart's appointment? So that Rossart was only made Hand after Rhaegar had already left the city to fight on the Trident?

 

10 hours ago, The Wondering Wolf said:

@Rhaenys_Targaryen This one might be interesting for you, as well.

Thanks for the tag! :)

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33 minutes ago, Rhaenys_Targaryen said:

Since the fortnight seems to fit so very well with all the other times we see people (whether large groups or small) travel from  to the Trident, I have wondered for quite some time: Is it possible that some time passed between Chelsted's death and Rossart's appointment? So that Rossart was only made Hand after Rhaegar had already left the city to fight on the Trident?

 

On 10/30/2018 at 9:32 AM, Ran said:

That said, dug around more in the emails with Anne and George, and I see that we did in fact stick with Rossart being made Hand after the Trident... but it is not explcitly coupled with the date of Chelsted's death. That is, the solution we struck upon is that Chelsted was killed and for a period of time there was no Hand until the Trident, when Aerys appointed Rossart. Presumably this was part and parcel of Aerys's conflict with his son, that he refused to name him (perhaps he dangled it in front of him if he won against Robert) or anyone else, and only chose a Hand when Rhaegar was dead. 

So I'm fairly comfortable with placing Chelsted's death just before Rhaegar rode to the Trident, with all the same arguments above, given that the only reason to believe it happened after is the natural but unsupported assumption that Rossart was appointed immediately after Chelsted.

 

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