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The Map Guy

Who has been smuggling onions into Bloodraven's cave??

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So there was a tiny tiny little detail that was easily overlooked in Bran's final ADWD chapter in Bloodraven's cave:

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Under the hill they still had food to eat. A hundred kinds of mushrooms grew down here. Blind white fish swam in the black river, but they tasted just as good as fish with eyes once you cooked them up. They had cheese and milk from the goats that shared the caves with the singers, even some oats and barleycorn and dried fruit laid by during the long summer. And almost every day they ate blood stew, thickened with barley and onions and chunks of meat. Jojen thought it might be squirrel meat, and Meera said that it was rat. Bran did not care. It was meat and it was good. The stewing made it tender.

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The moon was a crescent, thin and sharp as the blade of a knife. The days marched past, one after the other, each shorter than the one before. The nights grew longer. No sunlight ever reached the caves beneath the hill. No moonlight ever touched those stony halls. Even the stars were strangers there. Those things belonged to the world above, where time ran in its iron circles, day to night to day to night to day.

 

  • Mushrooms - Okay, they can grow in darkness, fine
  • Blind white fish - there is a river there, so it is plausible
  • Cheese & milk - the gang have seen the goats, probably fed by grains
  • oats, barleycorn, barley - grains can be stored for years
  • chunks of meat - there are animals around, but it may even be human meat
  • dried fruit laid - giving Bloodraven the benefit of the doubt that the fruits have been dried for a while

 

BUT ONIONS!!

I am not a farmer nor a cook, but don't we need sunlight to grow onions? And the fact they ate blood stew EVERYDAY, it would be a lot of onions. I don't think onions can stay fresh that long.

Also, isn't the cave surrounded by wights outside? Where did Coldhands go after Bran was dropped off? Would Coldhands journey to some farm and steal onions, fight his way against all the wights and drop off the onions with the CotF to make some stew for Bran?

Either GRRM had a brain-fart about these smuggled onions, or this Bloodraven story is setting up for a big deception twist.....

 

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I think, that the Others are creations of the Children, so they don't kill Children. All of them are in some sort of symbiosis, where the Children feed the Others thru giving blood and living sacrifices to the weirwood trees. And greenseers, that are binded to those trees, are partially controlling the Others. When the Children made a Pact with the Last Hero, they agreed, that Starks (descendants of LH) will be "feeding" the Others, and in exchange for that, the Children will keep them far away in the north, in the Lands of Always Winter. But eventually Starks stoped sacrificing people to the Old Gods/trees/the Others, so the Others were starving, and thus they demanded "food" from the Children. For many centuries the Children were giving their own people and blood to the Others, to keep them fed, but eventually their numbers decreased, so the Others went to look for another source of "food", and started to kill people. What has happened at Hardhome, 600 years ago, is their doing. People there were also "feeding" the Others, but something went wrong. One of Night's Watch's Commanders, the Night's King and his Corpse Queen were also "feeding" the Others. Probably, on Skagos is also happening something like that. And, most likely, there are other people, who are also giving sacrifices to the Old Gods/the Others. People like Craster.

So onions and other food was provided by Craster, who gave it to the Others/Coldhands, who then brought it to that cave. It's a barter.

If originally the Children were masters of the Others, and created them, to use them as protection against First Men, then now it's more like the Others are masters, and the Children are milk cows. So the Others are keeping the Children alive, and are feeding them/providing them with food, to be able to keep "milking" them.

Edited by Megorova

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36 minutes ago, Megorova said:

Probably, on Skagos is also happening something like that. People who are also giving sacrifices to the Old Gods/the Others.

So onions and other food was provided by Craster,  It's a barter.

originally the Children were masters , now it's more like the Others are, and the Children are milk cows.  Others are keeping the Children alive, to keep "milking" them.

That's a nice incestuous Others arrangement to bookend what Cercei & Jaime have going on on the human side of the Wall.   Not so alien after all, the Other.

I make lots of enthusiastic cannibal Rickon jokes, but your added detail about Skagos knowing what's up with the need to placate the Others  fits wonderfully with bringing Rickon back to Winterfell as a well informed oldschool Stark capable of resigning the contract with the Others to save mankind for another....1000 year cycle.  Unless Bran can work a better deal and break the damned cycle.  But it's best to have multiple options ready, so I like this Rickon angle a lot.  Not only can he eat some enemies of the Starks for comedic effect and legendary badass status, but it can also be integral to the supernatural plotline of pacifying the white walkers.

And there's probably a set exchange rate for onions and babies, like you can give the Others one baby or 150 onions.

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Up until book five I didn't know the CoTF still existed. Most people in Westeros still dunna know the CoTF exist. There is evidence in a WoW preview chapter that more may be revealed.

Up until book five I didn't know that there were gatherings where warg and skin changers met up to chat and trade.

Hells bells maybe Coldhands is not the only friend the COTF of has. Maybe the singers have a network of helpers bringing them goodies.

Maybe there is a hot house down one of the tunnels that uses the red comet as heat and light.

Maybe the crannog people ferry necessities up the underground river some how through magics.

Maybe the Green Men use teleportation to send stuff.

AND maybe, just maybe, the CoTF used to raid WF's glass gardens --- raft down the under ground river and haul the bounty back through Grendel & Gorne's Way ---- maybe the CotF are actually what the legends of the wildlings are based on.


A Storm of Swords - Jon III     "You know nothing, Jon Snow. Gendel did not die. He cut his way free, through the crows, and led his people back north with the wolves howling at their heels. Only Gendel did not know the caves as Gorne had, and took a wrong turn." She swept the torch back and forth, so the shadows jumped and moved. "Deeper he went, and deeper, and when he tried t' turn back the ways that seemed familiar ended in stone rather than sky. Soon his torches began t' fail, one by one, till finally there was naught but dark. Gendel's folk were never seen again, but on a still night you can hear their children's children's children sobbing under the hills, still looking for the way back up. Listen? Do you hear them?"/

Har! Ole Coldhands might even be Gendel or Gorne. May I remove my tinfoil hat and adjust my antennae now?

 

 

 

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3 hours ago, The Map Guy said:

Either GRRM had a brain-fart about these smuggled onions, or this Bloodraven story is setting up for a big deception twist.....

The NW has onions, Wildlings have onions, Coldhands hunts NW ... so :dunno:

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4 hours ago, King Aegon I Targaryen said:

Davos Seaworth of course. 

Would this be a foreshadowing of Davos sneaking into the cave? So far with the direction of his story line, you can't count it out. He may end up there. Who knows.

3 hours ago, Ser Leftwich said:

So they had oats, barleycorn, and dried fruit, but they can't have stored any wild onions? Onions keep for a long time. Look up 'root cellar.'

I'm not a farmer, but what is a "long time" for onions in a root cellar? I know grains can be stored for years, how about vegetables in a damp cave? And don't forget quantity too. They eat onions from their stew almost everyday.

3 hours ago, Megorova said:

So onions and other food was provided by Craster, who gave it to the Others/Coldhands, who then brought it to that cave. It's a barter.

Well if the Others are involved, can't they send their wights to pick up the vegetables? If the Others can mind-control a wight to wield and kill with a dagger, they can be mind-controlled to transport crops in baskets too. Hell, they can be mind-controlled to wield a spatula and cook a stew too. Zombie food!

3 hours ago, Ralphis Baratheon said:

Maybe Bran just has a really poor palate and thought he was tasting onions but they were really something else.

Could be, but that would make an uninteresting and irrelevant piece to the plot.

3 hours ago, The Mother of The Others said:

And there's probably a set exchange rate for onions and babies, like you can give the Others one baby or 150 onions.

hahahaha an exchange rate for onions and babies. What about a variable daily exchange rate of onions and babies at your local farmer's market?...one day babies are more in the demand, the other day onions are more in demand!

1 hour ago, Clegane'sPup said:

AND maybe, just maybe, the CoTF used to raid WF's glass gardens --- raft down the under ground river and haul the bounty back through Grendel & Gorne's Way ---- maybe the CotF are actually what the legends of the wildlings are based on.

If only Bran knew after the sack of Winterfell. Would have made his journey to Bloodraven's cave a lot easier. They wouldn't have to risk starving or freezing to death.

49 minutes ago, SirArthur said:

The NW has onions, Wildlings have onions, Coldhands hunts NW ... so :dunno:

The cave is sunless. No light. They are surrounded by wights outside. Essentially this is a siege on Bloodraven's cave, yet they seem to have an endless supply of food. The food in suspect is onions, which needs sun to grow and have a shorter life-span than grain. Bran, Meera, Jojen, Hodor are greeted with warm hefty meals everyday.

And where the hell is Coldhands after they reached the cave? The last we heard, a wight was attacking him. If he is smuggling onions with all the dangerous wights around, its a waste of time because they already have enough food down in the cave.

 

https://www.westeros.org/Citadel/SSM/Entry/Asshai.com_Interview_in_Barcelona/

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During Robert's rebellion, what brought a simple smuggler like Davos to take sides in the war by helping Stannis and the starving garrison at Storm's End?

(George laughs) Because he had onions! And so he thought to himself: "Where can I sell these at the best price? If I take them to King's Landing they'll pay me the price of onions, but i I take them to people during of hunger they'd certainly pay me better."

 

Bran, Meera, Jojen and Hodor were definitely hungry before they arrived at Bloodraven's cave.

 

 

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