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three-eyed monkey

Please explain Ramsay and the Pink Letter.

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34 minutes ago, divica said:

I mean, stannis conquers winterfell and then what?

He returns to the Wall. Stannis has claimed the Nightfort as his seat.

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3 hours ago, Ser Hedge said:

Anything but.  Your arguments have been well thought out, very consistently and even more patiently articulated when we other posters forgot some of the assumptions or premises in the reasoning behind the theory a few pages later.

While maybe super-nerdy :D this has been an amazing thread!

Btw, I'm still on the fence re: PL Authorship. It does take some time to get your head around the Stannis theory (maybe because show Stannis is lurking in there :stunned:?), but it's a viable theory well worth debating IMHO.

Thanks. Nerds rock. It has been a good conversation.

1 hour ago, Impbread said:

I love the argument from all of the posters on this thread I must say

I agree.

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1 minute ago, Clegane'sPup said:

He returns to the Wall. Stannis has claimed the Nightfort as his seat.

Ok. So and the rest of the post?

How does he chose a warden? Is he going to abdicate the IT during winter? Will his sellswords disembark on the Wall? Is he going to defend westeros with his own sellswords while the lannisters rule? What is he going to do about the IB in the north? What will he do when some stark comes looking to take the north back?

Are you saying that stannis wins winterfell and spends the rest of the story on the Wall? Can he forge any aliance with danny or faegon or anyone else?

 

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1 hour ago, kissdbyfire said:

Also, I have been doing the PL dance w/ @three-eyed monkey for a few weeks now, and maybe at other times over the years, and we both remain unconvinced of the other’s arguments. I firmly believe Ramsay wrote it, and if it is revealed in Winds that he didn’t, I will be utterly shocked. Like, R+L=/=J level of shock. And 3EM believes just as firmly that Stannis wrote it. One day of of us will owe a pint or 12 to the other, plus eternal rights to take the piss of the mercilessly! (And it will be me getting the free drinks!) :P

One thing I’m sure though... I have never, not once, seen any evidence of intellectual dishonesty in him. 

Thanks for that.

Ha. A merciless piss take and 12 pints it shall be then, if I'm wrong.

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4 minutes ago, divica said:

How does he chose a warden?

If you and I are talking about Stannis ---- he doesn't.

5 minutes ago, divica said:

Is he going to abdicate the IT during winter?

Stannis does not rule Westeros.

6 minutes ago, divica said:

Will his sellswords disembark on the Wall?

Depends on the banker and Massey.

8 minutes ago, divica said:

Is he going to defend westeros with his own sellswords while the lannisters rule?

Stannis according to the ruling Lannister is a traitor.

9 minutes ago, divica said:

What is he going to do about the IB in the north?

I assume IB means Iron Born.

11 minutes ago, divica said:

What will he do when some stark comes looking to take the north back?

You tell me.

11 minutes ago, divica said:

Are you saying that stannis wins winterfell and spends the rest of the story on the Wall?

What I am saying is Stannis' intent is to bring the northmen to his cause by kicking Bolton out or WF so that Stannis can return to the Wall and fight the Others.

AND I be tinkin' I know an attempt at a derail when I see it.

Pink/bastard letter deary. Who doya tink wrote it?

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15 minutes ago, Clegane'sPup said:

If you and I are talking about Stannis ---- he doesn't.

Stannis does not rule Westeros.

Depends on the banker and Massey.

Stannis according to the ruling Lannister is a traitor.

I assume IB means Iron Born.

You tell me.

What I am saying is Stannis' intent is to bring the northmen to his cause by kicking Bolton out or WF so that Stannis can return to the Wall and fight the Others.

AND I be tinkin' I know an attempt at a derail when I see it.

Pink/bastard letter deary. Who doya tink wrote it?

Stannis thinks he should rule westeros so if he wins winterfell he will want to chose a warden. After all stannis calls himself king…

And stannis cause isn t only to defend the Wall against the others. He wants to become king and going north was a means to gain support to get the IT. Well, after the battle of winterfell there isn t much more support to be gained in the north…

If he goes to the Wall as you suggest then he is abdicating from fighting for the IT during winter and defending westeros with his personal resources while the lannisters rule without problems (and we know that fighting the others will take the rest of the books…. so stannis won winterfell so that he can spend the rest of the story on the wall….).

And stannis situation after the battle of winterfell is pretty important to identify who wrote the PL. And I am trying to point out that stannis winning winterfell would be a dead end. There is no way to move the story forward… A stannis with his sights on the IT and in a postion of power is an obstacle to progressing the story.

Whoever rules the north needs to establish aliances with other people for resources and fighters. Stannis won t ally himself with a pretender to his throne… He is azor ahai and the one true king… 

And to me the only person I can see writing the letter is a Bolton.

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3 hours ago, The Coconut God said:

I said you were intellectually dishonest because you tend to judge the Ramsay Theory more critically than your own. It may be that you are doing it subconsciously, in which case you're being biased rather than dishonest. Here are a few examples:

I disagree.

3 hours ago, The Coconut God said:

I challenged you by pointing out that Stannis writing the letter doesn't really take the story anywhere, and you said it's fine to have a twist with no punch line because failed plans happen:

And I pointed out that the letter brought the plot somewhere, and as I believe the letter was written by Stannis then I believe Stannis writing the letter did go somewhere.

Also if Stannis is still alive and Ramsay is dead then there is room for it to go further between Stannis and Jon. If Ramsay is still alive and Stannis is dead then there is room for it to go further between Ramsay and Jon. And as I believe Stannis is still alive then I believe there is room for it to go further between Stannis and Jon.

3 hours ago, The Coconut God said:

You're also fine with Jon dying randomly because of a scheme that had nothing to do with killing him, even though there's no thematic meat there. But when it comes to Jon randomly dying because of a letter Ramsay wrote, it's suddenly a poor storytelling device:

I don't know what you mean by thematic meat. Explain the thematic meat in Ramsay writing the letter.

But I am fine with the letter being a mystery, and there being clues planted throughout the novel proceeding the event for the reader to work out. That is satisfying and if a read is satisfying then it is good writing.

What is not good writing is dropping something out of character with no foreshadowing and putting it down to a psycho's rant that acts against his own interest but results in more than he could have hoped for, while the writer failed miserably to clarify what he intended and sent half his readers down a mystery rabbit hole when there was no mystery. Yes, that is very poor storytelling and not characteristic of this series or GRRM.

4 hours ago, The Coconut God said:

Never mind that several major deaths in the series are triggered by trivial things or caused by unexpected background characters (Drogo gets an infected wound, Joffrey is poisoned by Olenna, the Starks are undone by some of their minor bannermen because Robb married a random girl, etc.) 

Caused by unexpected background characters with a plan. And in the case of Olenna and the Red Wedding a plan that can be traced in the text before the event, clues, foreshadowing, etc. That's the difference between good writing and dropping shocks for the sake of it.

4 hours ago, The Coconut God said:

You make the same point later while challenging my aesthetic tastes, which is a very subjective (as well as personal) argument

Look at what you quoted from me. I said we have different tastes and said that's ok. I then expanded on my taste. I never challenged your taste. It's ok to have different opinions. This forum would be redundant if we didn't.

4 hours ago, The Coconut God said:

So it's fine to call the idea that Jon got himself killed because Ramsay's letter triggered him into breaking his vows "comically poor", but if I call Stannis's plan to get Jon to Winterfell by sending him the Pink Letter cartoonish and convoluted, that can be brushed aside. Obviously, your opinions are an exquisite standard for quality; mine are shit. :lol:

You misread me again. I said the writing on the show is comically bad at times, in my opinion, hence my lack of interest in the show, but I accept that millions disagree with me.

4 hours ago, The Coconut God said:

As for the headcanon, here you go. A few pages ago we were discussing the likelihood of Mance's capture. I argued that it would be reasonable to assume that Mance and the other spearwives were captured, because last time we saw Mance he was in the Great Hall with the Boltons, and the text never implies that they had a backup plan in case the alarm sounded. You countered with the following:

Quote

They would have been in the hall or close to it by the time the alarm sounded. The guards must then respond at the walls. Holly gets shot. Theon and Jeyne Jump. Frenya fights. The guards quickly identify the women. Someone then needs to bring that information to Roose or Ramsay in the great hall. The Boltons may well have been brought out of the hall at the sound of the alarm. In fact the hall probably emptied, with most people going towards the alarm at the wall. There would be a number of orders being given as capturing Theon and Jeyne would have been a priority. I think there would be enough time and confusion for Mance and co to slip away.

That's pure supposition. You were attempting to counter a simple and straight-forward scenario that ties together the things we learned from Theon's chapter to the things we learned from the letter with a more convoluted, equally hypothetical scenario. With that explanation you can, at best, cling to the idea that Mance and the spearwives might have escaped (while ignoring Occam's Razor), but you can't use it to cast doubt on the notion that Ramsay would most likely know that Jon ordered fArya's rescue, and therefore would have a score to settle with him.

None of this is part of the Stannis Theory. The theory is unconcerned with whether Mance is caught or not.

What you quoted was pure supposition on my behalf and I don't deny it. I was teasing out the part about Mance and the spearwives. I have already said I think it is likely that at least one of them were caught alive. That conclusion is made for narrative reasons though, it has nothing to do with Occam's Razor, as I don't find that a reliable tool for assessing fiction. Not when writers are so often trying to write complex stories that carry readers forward in a manner they least expect. And GRRM is good at that.

And for narrative reasons I also concluded that I think Mance will get to the crypts, possibly with Rowan and co. But that's just my opinon. And it has no bearing on the Stannis theory.

4 hours ago, The Coconut God said:

Stannis wanted Jon to accept Winterfell back when he was at Castle Black. The main reason for this was that Jon would have gained him the support of some of the northern houses in order to challenge the Boltons (and later the Lannisters).

"You could bring the north to me. Your father's bannermen would rally to the son of Eddard Stark. Even Lord Too-Fat-to-Sit-a-Horse"

This is a good example of the value of textual support. He did not say some of your father's bannermen, nor did he say some of the north.

4 hours ago, The Coconut God said:

The Boltons had Stark's daughter, so he wanted Ned's son.

Citation?

4 hours ago, The Coconut God said:

It is headcanon to assume that he wouldn't already have the support of the other northern lords after defeating the Boltons, or that having Jon in charge would get him anything extra.

Maybe it's your headcanon to assume he would.

5 hours ago, The Coconut God said:

Stannis can cement his claim to the North by remarrying fArya to someone loyal to him. Assuming he can't do this is a biased position.

He planned to make a better match for her, we know that. If he planned to use her to win the north he would have kept her close. I'm not assuming he can't do it but I am guessing he won't. That suggests to me he has a better option in mind.

5 hours ago, The Coconut God said:

If Stannis believes the northern lords would follow Jon, he can simply tell them that he will free him of his vows and name him Lord of Winterfell if the lords side with him. He can then make Jon the initial offer again, this time while they both know that the lords would support it. A more straight-forward and reliable strategy exists.

Stannis and the northern lords can agree whatever they want, but Jon's objection was based on his vows, not whether the northern lords would support it. So no, it's not a reliable strategy when it fails to deal with the correct objection.

3 hours ago, Impbread said:

There is no reason for Stannis to assume that the Pink Letter would get Jon to come south. We only know that it would have because we benefit from hindsight. Assuming that this result was planned is a huge reach. There is no other scheme in ASoIaF that involves this level of foresight.

Stannis would know better to assume it would work. He could only hope it would. Jon reacts or he doesn't. I explained why I think Stannis believes he would react the way he did a few pages back. You're free to disagree.

5 hours ago, The Coconut God said:

Even if Jon comes south with the specific intention of fighting Ramsay, there is no reason to assume he would have accepted the lordship from Stannis after finding out he was deceived. Jumping to this conclusion reflects bias. In the words of two great men.... creatively it makes sense to you because you want it to happen.

Stannis obviously wouldn't tell Jon. That would be stupid of him. Jumping to the conclusion he would reflects your own bias.

5 hours ago, The Coconut God said:

Narratively speaking, if George wanted Jon to be called south by Stannis and the northern lords, Robb's will would have offered a better justification for this. Robb's will was set up and might yet enter play, so creating a scenario where Stannis didn't know about it but wanted the same thing, and sent the Pink Letter to try and trick Jon even though the will will be used anyway... does nothing but needlessly complicate the narrative. Calling this good storytelling is biased. Creatively it makes sense to you because you want it to happen.

This suggests you like simple narratives. But I accept that is nothing more than my biased opinion.

5 hours ago, The Coconut God said:

With all the weight of the above, please note that my argument is NOT that you should give up the Stannis Theory. My argument is that you don't have a hard enough case to keep dismissing the Ramsay Theory like it was nothing.

What's the weight of nothing?

5 hours ago, The Coconut God said:

Both theories require us to build scenarios and make assumptions. In both cases it's a matter of taste how well the story works, although I would warn you about holding your own enjoyment hostage in order to make a point against me or others.

Thank you. I will heed your warning.

5 hours ago, The Coconut God said:

If you keep arguing your point too hard, you might end up souring the Ramsay scenario for yourself no matter how good it is. Built up bias tends to work like that.

Is this based on a personal experience by any chance?

5 hours ago, The Coconut God said:

And the Ramsay Theory is likely, no matter what you say.

I disagree.

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On 4/3/2019 at 9:30 PM, Nevets said:

The mention of his family as potential hostages also leads to potential action (e.g., evacuation) that appear counter to Stannis's interests.

Alliser!    Rids the wall of its false king infestation.  Who's a better match than Alliser for those strange stan family demands?  Nobody.

I'm 3 pages back, but

The easiest answer for why Ramsay assumes Jeyne is headed for CB is he just tortured the people from castle black who busted her out.  Just saying.

 

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Posted (edited)
14 hours ago, three-eyed monkey said:

We're twelve pages into this discussion now (several years in all) and nobody has been able to support this so-called more reliable theory with text. No one has laid it out precisely in a way that makes sense without running into a an objection that is supported by text. If Ramsay really wrote the letter, and the authorship is not in question, and that was GRRM's intention, do people really think it would be this hard to find some text that supports it?

Agreed. The simplest answer is Ramsey, but its NOT really that simple. It requires too many assumptions that makes Team-Ramsey a more complicated answer.

Assumptions needed to make the author of PL = Ramsey:

  1. No spikey signature ... Team Ramsey - Jon wasn't thinking about it
  2. No skins even though he has six skins ... Team Ramsey - Does he really have to?
  3. No blood ink even though he did some flaying ... Team Ramsey - Does he really have to?
  4. No pink Bolton Seal ... Team Ramsey - It wasn't lying around at the time or someone opened it.
  5. Seven days of battle is a long battle for a smaller army ... Team Ramsey - It could happen 
  6. Mance & Spearwives were caught and confessed everything ... Team Ramsey - Why not?
  7. Where did Theon go even though he was a prisoner? ... Team Ramsey - He escaped during the battle
  8. How come the letter is not wet from the raven in the storm? ... Team Ramsey - Jon wasn't thinking it

I don't know about Team Ramsey, but it requires a lot of assumptions without anything else backing it up, besides the PL itself. TOO MUCH would have happened off screen.

 

Besides, I know Stannis is an underdog for the Battle of Winterfell, but he is in a position to execute a brilliant tactical Trojan-horse type plan. There is hype built up for his sneaky position. It would be disappointing that PL simply says he failed. TOO MUCH happened off screen if PL = Ramsey

 

But I'll admit, Team Stannis and Team Mance for the PL requires a lot of assumptions too...esp. the motive.

 

I'm Team Mel and her assumptions are short and quick:

  1. Mel wrote it and EVERYTHING LITTLE DETAIL OF THE PL THAT WE OVER-ANALYZED OVER THE YEARS WAS MADE UP
  2. Mel's motive was to trick Jon to trust her again, after Jon telling her she was a fool's hope.
  3. Mel knows the name "Reek" when Stannis sent a raven in the storm updating his situation at CV, letting her know that Arya is on her way up

 

Text supporting Team Mel ... all in one chapter:

First Act

  • Jon asks: "Where is Stannis? What of Rattleshirt and his spearwives? Where is my sister?" ... questions that were addressed in the PL. 
  • Mel telling Jon to "send to her" when he gets his answers.
  • Jon tells Mel that she is "a fool's hope" and leaves.
Quote

"A grey girl on a dying horse. Daggers in the dark. A promised prince, born in smoke and salt. It seems to me that you make nothing but mistakes, my lady. Where is Stannis? What of Rattleshirt and his spearwives? Where is my sister?
"All your questions shall be answered. Look to the skies, Lord Snow. And when you have your answers, send to me. Winter is almost upon us now. I am your only hope."
"A fool's hope." Jon turned and left her.
Jon XIII ADWD

 

Middle Act

  • The Pink Letter, "Send them to me." 
  • Jon thinking about how Mel predicted this and remembering that he should go see her.
  • Tormund triggering the clues that the letter may be forged. This is GRRM telling us to be smart about this.
Quote

I want my bride back. I want the false king's queen. I want his daughter and his red witch. I want his wildling princess. I want his little prince, the wildling babe. And I want my Reek. Send them to me, bastard, and I will not trouble you or your black crows. Keep them from me, and I will cut out your bastard's heart and eat it.

Pink Letter - Jon XIII ADWD

Quote

When he was done, Tormund whistled. "Har. That's buggered, and no mistake. What was that about Mance? Has him in a cage, does he? How, when hundreds saw your red witch burn the man?"

That was Rattleshirt, Jon almost said. That was sorcery. A glamor, she called it. "Melisandre … look to the skies, she said." He set the letter down. "A raven in a storm. She saw this coming." When you have your answers, send to me.

"Might be all a SKIN o' lies." Tormund scratched under his beard. "If I had me a nice goose quill and a pot o' maester's ink, I could write down that me member was long and thick as me arm, wouldn't make it so."

Jon XIII ADWD

 

Final Act

  • Jon telling himself that he should have gone to Selyse first and Mel after.
  • He was on his way to see them, until he got assassinated.
Quote

 

"I will send for ale," Jon said, distracted. Melisandre was gone, he realized, and so were the queen's knights. I should have gone to Selyse first. She has the right to know her lord is dead. "You must excuse me. I'll leave you to get them drunk."

"Har! A task I'm well suited for, crow. On your way!"

Horse and Rory fell in beside Jon as he left the Shieldhall. I should talk with Melisandre after I see the queen, he thought. If she could see a raven in a storm, she can find Ramsay Snow for me. Then he heard the shouting … and a roar so loud it seemed to shake the Wall. "That come from Hardin's Tower, m'lord," Horse reported. He might have said more, but the scream cut him off.

[Assassination of Jon Snow]

Jon XIII ADWD

 

 

The clues for the PL-author was all in Jon XIII ADWD, and it came in three pieces - First, Middle & Final Act

Team Mel for the win with the simplest answers! With hints immediately before and after Jon receives the PL!

Edited by The Map Guy

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23 minutes ago, The Map Guy said:

[snip]

Text supporting Team Mel ... all in one chapter:

First Act

  • Jon asks: "Where is Stannis? What of Rattleshirt and his spearwives? Where is my sister?" ... questions that were addressed in the PL. 
  • Mel telling Jon to "send to her" when he gets his answers.
  • Jon tells Mel that she is "a fool's hope" and leaves.

 

Middle Act

  • The Pink Letter, "Send them to me." 
  • Jon thinking about how Mel predicted this and remembering that he should go see her.
  • Tormund triggering the clues that the letter may be forged. This is GRRM telling us to be smart about this.

 

Final Act

  • Jon telling himself that he should have gone to Selyse first and Mel after.
  • He was on his way to see them, until he got assassinated.

 

The clues for the PL-author was all in Jon XIII ADWD, and it came in three pieces - First, Middle & Final Act

Team Mel for the win with the simplest answers! With hints immediately before and after Jon receives the PL!

Only you don't provide a slingle clue for your theory. The 'text evidence' you provide above is no evidence at all.

Look - I can see some good points for the Mance theories and the Stannis theories. Even though they too are tinfoil since they ignore the hard evidence we have in form of the letter. Still they have some good arguments in their favour.

Your theory though has - nothing. Except that to you it would make sense if Mel forged a letter.

 

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, Amris said:

Only you don't provide a slingle clue for your theory. The 'text evidence' you provide above is no evidence at all.

In a court of law, you are right. This will NEVER BE EVIDENCE in COURT. But we are NOT in court. We are in a book, we are in the mind of an author. And he lays clues and foreshadowing in his writing techniques.

If you use "foreshadowing" as evidence in a court, the judge would laugh at you. But "foreshadowing" is usually good evidence in literature ... if interpreted correctly lol.

 

1 hour ago, Amris said:

Look - I can see some good points for the Mance theories and the Stannis theories. Even though they too are tinfoil since they ignore the hard evidence we have in form of the letter.

True Story:

I was sued a few years ago. I was a defendant in court being accused of not full-filling the duties of a contract. I told the judge the plaintiff misinterpreted the contract AND he altered the contract in his favor without my permission.

The plaintiff drafted the original contract and gave me a copy. We signed our names on page#3 of both copies. But when I was served with the lawsuit, I noticed page#2 of the contract he gave the court was changed.

In court, the judge saw my original copy, and the plaintiff's original copy. They were different. Plaintiff maintains that he has the original contract and accused me of forging mine to relieve myself of the certain duties.

So I looked at his original and my original in front of the judge. I showed the judge that my contract had 4 pairs of staples holes on all 3 pages. At times I removed the staples so I can photocopy it page by page.

And then I showed the judge the plaintiff's contract ... his page#1 and page#3 had about 10 pairs of staple holes, BUT his page#2 had only 3 pairs.

His page#2 was altered, printed out, and inserted between the original #1 & #3. Therefore the plaintiff's contract was forged. Judge was shocked, but she admitted that it is not actual evidence, and it needs to be re-examined by a forging expert ... but it was enough in her heart that she found me not guilty.

 

Anyways, my point is that IF the Pink Letter is forged by someone that is not Ramsey, then every detail in that letter is NOT admissible evidence.

1 hour ago, Amris said:

Even though they too are tinfoil since they ignore the hard evidence we have in form of the letter.

If the letter is forged, it is not hard evidence anymore.

 

1 hour ago, Amris said:

Your theory though has - nothing. Except that to you it would make sense if Mel forged a letter.

Yes it is. And I would bet $1,000 of my own money that Mel wrote it.
After reading my case for Mel, anyone want to match my bet for their team? Anyone from Team Ramsey?

Edited by The Map Guy

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On 3/31/2019 at 4:38 AM, three-eyed monkey said:

This is a good point.

Maester Rhodry stood beside him, a raven on his arm. The bird's black plumage shone like coal oil in the torchlight. Wet, Theon realized. And in his lordship's hand, a parchment. That will be wet as well. Dark wings, dark words. "Rather than use our swords upon each other, you might try them on Lord Stannis." Lord Bolton unrolled the parchment.

I agree that the pink letter should have been wet on arrival, if indeed it came in a storm by raven.

Some people may argue that the letter was wet and Jon didn't mention it because he expected it to be wet, but I'm not a fan of that type of reasoning.

I believe the letter was most likely opened and read by the conspirators and then re-sealed before it was brought to Jon, as it is sealed with a "smear" of wax instead of the more common button of wax. They would have read it, discussed plans, and then delivered it. I'm not sure how long that would have taken or how much the parchment would have dried out by then?

Some readers, like @bemused have long theorized that the letter was re-written by the conspirators, including Alliser Thorne perhaps, using some of the information within the original letter. I'm not opposed to this idea at all, and if the wet parchment is an issue we need to explain, then I think this makes a lot of sense.

But regardless of whether the letter was re-written by the conspirators or Mel at Castle Black, I still think that it was based on an original letter because those characters at Castle Black would need a source of information from Winterfell that explains the use of Reek. And I think that letter came from Stannis.

Life has been keeping me away (and problems with my hands), so I have a lot of thoughts pent up and I hope I've saved some of the multiple posts I started and couldn't finish.

Anyway, when you think of the distance Jon's letter had traveled, compared to Roose's letter, Jon's should have been sopping. GRRM purposely has Theon point out that Roose's letter would be wet, precisely for comparison, I'd bet. There may have been time to dry it (e.g. by Clydas' fire),  but then parchment wouldn't have dried flat and if it was pressed that would take longer to dry. So... :dunno:

I don't think there's any perhaps about Thorne's involvement.I think the letter reads most like the way we have seen Thorne speak to Jon when he's really trying to goad Jon into doing something rash. - Bastard, bastard, bastard ... earlier, Ygritte was an "unwashed whore"...  here, Mel is Jon's "red whore"  (not just the more usual red witch)... earlier, Thorne tries to goad Jon into attacking him, a senior officer, which is itself punishable by death ... now Jon is being goaded into attacking Winterfell , which is no doubt included in the conspirator's supposed reasoning / excuse for the assassination.... and many other etc's. (I could go on.)

I agree the original letter was written by Stannis, but I think it was wriiten not from Winterfell, but from the field after the battle and after Ramsay , arriving late for the battle, continues on after his bride and his Reek.

I've missed a lot, here. I have pages to read to catch up...

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4 hours ago, The Mother of The Others said:

Alliser!    Rids the wall of its false king infestation.  Who's a better match than Alliser for those strange stan family demands?  Nobody.

I'm 3 pages back, but

The easiest answer for why Ramsay assumes Jeyne is headed for CB is he just tortured the people from castle black who busted her out.  Just saying.

 

To be clear, is this the same as the CB re-write of a Stannis letter from CV theory that @bemused pointed out above, or a variant please?

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9 hours ago, kissdbyfire said:

Aren’t we all a little biased towards our favoured ideas and theories? I don’t know, but speaking for myself only, I do think I am.

Also, I have been doing the PL dance w/ @three-eyed monkey for a few weeks now, and maybe at other times over the years, and we both remain unconvinced of the other’s arguments. I firmly believe Ramsay wrote it, and if it is revealed in Winds that he didn’t, I will be utterly shocked. Like, R+L=/=J level of shock. And 3EM believes just as firmly that Stannis wrote it. One day of of us will owe a pint or 12 to the other, plus eternal rights to take the piss of the mercilessly! (And it will be me getting the free drinks!) :P

One thing I’m sure though... I have never, not once, seen any evidence of intellectual dishonesty in him. 

I will defer to your wisdom, then. :P Maybe I judged him too harshly.

I guess I'm overly sensitive to people claiming certainty when they only managed to prove a certain degree of likelihood. I tend to acknowledge my own biases and the possibility that I am wrong when I'm championing my own theories. I'm 100% convinced that the Exodus scenario would work and I would personally love that story (a preference which I suppose is entwined with the fact that I discovered it), but I'm only 50% certain that this is really what George planned, and a huge number of fans wouldn't even give it 5% because they have their own expectations. I can't run around saying "This makes sense to me for reasons", so you're all wrong! :P

All theories are at least somewhat valid until George proves most of them wrong. We can only speak of some being more or less likely than others, or place them somewhere on the scale between tinfoil and fan canon. You can't really claim you managed to "put down" a theory (especially a very reasonable one). And that's the problem here, this is billed as an anti Ramsay theory thread rather than a pro Stannis theory one.

9 hours ago, kissdbyfire said:

Head canon = opinion? :D

Because it is, right? I actually agree w/ the points you made btw. 

Yes, I supposed that would be a nicer name for it. :D

9 hours ago, kissdbyfire said:

Once the Boltons have been defeated, do you really think no one would speak up about Jeyne not being Arya? Because to me it seems most northerners already know Ramsay married a faux Stark. Only they’re not in a position to do anything about it, but once the Boltons are defeated the game changes. And then no one will want to/gain anything from arranging marriages for her. 

You make a good point here, he might not be able to use her. Although if the northern lords open up to him, he might also find out that Rickon is alive, and Stannis might believe a kid would be easier to coax than Jon. He could even propose a marriage to Shireen in a pinch.

9 hours ago, kissdbyfire said:

Unless he wanted to obfuscate and make us debate endlessly about it for years and years. Oh wait. :D

(and wanted the stabbing to occur precisely then to obfuscate some more)

And bless him for that! :cheers:

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Posted (edited)
7 hours ago, three-eyed monkey said:

I disagree.

That's great. I can also disagree that your arguments against the Ramsay theory are convincing. ;)

I apologize if I offended you, maybe I was too harsh with my judgment. I assure you that the intention was entirely pedantic and not at all personal. :P

7 hours ago, three-eyed monkey said:

And I pointed out that the letter brought the plot somewhere, and as I believe the letter was written by Stannis then I believe Stannis writing the letter did go somewhere.

Also if Stannis is still alive and Ramsay is dead then there is room for it to go further between Stannis and Jon. If Ramsay is still alive and Stannis is dead then there is room for it to go further between Ramsay and Jon. And as I believe Stannis is still alive then I believe there is room for it to go further between Stannis and Jon.

If you think the Stannis scenario can further the story, it might be interesting to explore that.

The fact that it brought the plot to where it is now means nothing, because that would have happened regardless of who wrote the letter. I don't think Stannis being the author adds anything thematically. it's just a "Gotcha!" twist reveal. This is my opinion and I won't argue it with you. ;)

7 hours ago, three-eyed monkey said:

Explain the thematic meat in Ramsay writing the letter.

It explores Ramsay as a character. He's an impulsive psychopath who bullies people, and we see his rage and malice exploding on the page, no doubt after being reigned in for a while, since Roose, not Ramsay, was in charge at Winterfell, and he wouldn't have allowed his son to provoke other potential enemies until Stannis had been dealt with.

It's also very humorous, because if the Frey victory was just a ruse, we can assume Ramsay was captured by the most just man in Westeros shortly after that mental power trip. That's a pretty big and satisfying fall. And that's something that happen often with serial killers, that they believe themselves untouchable until the noose closes in around them.

As for Jon dying because of Ramsay, that also works well. Ramsay is an evil creature, so it is thematically fitting that with his final act as a free man he spilled a little poison into the world that ended up killing Jon. This isn't a cerebral victory for Ramsay though, because I don't believe he planned for Jon to get killed. Like you said, he "lucked out".

But this is completely fine, because the weight of Jon's death doesn't come from the plot itself. It's his own arc that leads to this, his own mistake crowning a series of other, smaller mistakes that are apparent in the text. From this perspective, the author of the letter is irrelevant. Jon was assassinated because his love for his sister most of all, and maybe to a lesser degree his respect towards Stannis and Mance, made him crack and break his vows. First he favored Stannis, then he interfered in the politics of the North by arresting a nobleman and brokering a marriage with a wildling, then he allowed even more wildlings through and gave them castles, all purportedly for the sake of the Watch... until finally he straight out rallied himself an army to go and attack Winterfell. That's all about him, about Jon's soul in conflict to itself. The fact that the letter was just a psychopath's rant doesn't take anything away from this, it adds to the tragedy. I believe making a twist of it would actually detract from the story, because then people would be discussing the twist instead Jon very subtle yet very deep character study.

As for Stannis, if he was the author, that would only cement him as a failure, which might seem fitting on a superficial level, but doesn't really work in depth. Failure (and overcoming it) is an ongoing theme with Stannis, and his arc is expected to end in failure, but that needs to come from his uncompromising and/or dutiful nature, he was set up to "break before he bends". Failing at a subversive plot is not thematically relevant for him, it isn't him breaking because he refuses to bend... if anything, it is bending, slipping and falling on his face. And it falls flat, because we wouldn't expect Stannis to be good at subversive plots anyway... and it's such a far fetched plot that nobody would put much hope in it anyway. So where's the drama, where's the tension, where's the surprise? It's just a dumb plan that fails... Duh! Even worse, we see it fail before we see it being cooked.

7 hours ago, three-eyed monkey said:

None of this is part of the Stannis Theory. The theory is unconcerned with whether Mance is caught or not.

What you quoted was pure supposition on my behalf and I don't deny it. I was teasing out the part about Mance and the spearwives. I have already said I think it is likely that at least one of them were caught alive. That conclusion is made for narrative reasons though, it has nothing to do with Occam's Razor, as I don't find that a reliable tool for assessing fiction. Not when writers are so often trying to write complex stories that carry readers forward in a manner they least expect. And GRRM is good at that.

And for narrative reasons I also concluded that I think Mance will get to the crypts, possibly with Rowan and co. But that's just my opinon. And it has no bearing on the Stannis theory.

This is fair enough.

I hope you will forgive me, but I won't get into your other points and barbs, because I'd be here all day splitting hairs and I can't really afford that. :P I think my arguments remain standing in spite of them, but that's just my opinion. Those who follow the discussion will be able to make up their own minds about that.

Edited by The Coconut God

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9 hours ago, divica said:

I think the smudge of ink and (if I remember correctly) how afraid the man that was delivering the letter was are HUGE clues that the NW brothers opened the letter. And if we take into account how fast a group of brothers decided to kill their lord comander… There must have been some premeditation.

I agree. And the premeditation could have been going on for some time for all we know.

Marsh's attitude towards the wildlings had hardened since he was wounded at the bridge and he was clearly unhappy with Jon's decisions regarding them. He was also unhappy that Jon was aiding Stannis and warned Jon that the Watch must be seen to choose the right side between the rebel Stannis and the Crown or risk been seen as traitors. And we can safely assume he had a raven from Harys Swyft and Pycelle demanding Jon be removed as Lord Commander that underlined the point. So Marsh has a lot of motive.

Marsh also had words with "Rattleshirt" over supper when he accused the wildling of spying and listening in on their councils. Marsh had been banging on about the high ground at the time, according to Mance, and we know Marsh's father told him to always take the high ground and win the battle. Marsh could have been talking about anything, but my gut sense is that this was a conversation with fellow conspirators.

So I think a plan to remove Jon as Lord Commander was brewing, then the letter came and catalyzed the plan. The letter claimed Stannis was defeated, so Marsh's insistence that the Crown was the right side to choose in the conflict was confirmed. The letter accused Jon of sending Mance to steal the Lord of Winterfell's bride. The letter says if Jon doesn't comply then the Lord of Winterfell will come for him. Then Jon reads the letter in the shieldhall and announces his plan. Marsh has to act to stop Jon because if he leaves Jon ride south with an army of wildings then he, and the Watch, will obviously be seen as complicate in Jon's crimes by the Crown. That's why it was "For the Watch."

9 hours ago, divica said:

Come on! It is impossible for stannis to win the battle of winterfell. Simply because the story has nowhere to go after it. 

I mean, stannis conquers winterfell and then what?

In my opinion Stannis' arc has some left yet.

For one thing, Jon's death will increase Rickon's stock and put Davos in the position of kingmaker as long as there are still two sides who want Rickon. We know the pro-Stark northern lords would want him, I think it would be more interesting if Stannis was still alive and wanted him too.

I also think that Stannis will have to make a choice soon between marching south or facing the Others. Save the Kingdom or win the Throne? I can't see Stannis not having to answer that question at some stage.

And then of course the other question, will he burn one child in order to save a million from darkness? Stannis will not burn Shireen to help him take Winterfell or indeed the Iron Throne. He will only do it in a misguided attempt to save the kingdom and that gives us a good guide to how he will answer the previous question.

Some people also think that Stannis being Azor Ahai is one of the lies Dany must slay, I'm not so convinced of this but it's possible.

So I don't accept the story has nowhere to go for Stannis after Winterfell.

10 hours ago, divica said:

He has to choose a warden. If the warden isn t a stark he won t be accepted. If rickon is available the northern lords might as well choose him as king and kick stannis, his fire god Southern fans and his desire for the IT as far away as possible (stannis has around 600 southerns left at this point so he doesn t have much support).

If he marries one of his followers to farya and declare him warden he is also fucked

I agree. This is why Stannis needed Jon.

10 hours ago, divica said:

Then the sellswords that he is hiring from essos will arrive in westeros where? In the north or the wall? In the midle of winter? Will they stay in the north in case the others attack ? so stannis is abdicating from the IT during winter and defend westeros with sellswords he hired while the lannisters rule happily? 

I doubt we will see the sellswords. Massey has lost faith in Stannis and hints as much to Asha. Maybe his faith will be rekindled but I'm not so sure.

10 hours ago, divica said:

Which other kingdoms would support stannis in his claim for the IT? He doesn t have supporters anywhere and nobody likes him...

That's a good question. But we could have said the same when he was defeated and back on Dragonstone. If Stannis does win the north, then his eyes would naturally go to the Riverlands next. Riverrun was the last castle in Westeros to fly the stark banner. He seems to have plans regarding Theon Asha and the Iron Isles as well. But how far he will progress south depends on when the Others advance. I think he'll plan to go south but when the Wall falls or whatever, he will have to ask himself the question, do I turn around and try to save the kingdom or do I proceed and try to win the throne.

This is obviously just my opinion. My point is there is plenty of room for more Stannis story after Winterfell.

10 hours ago, divica said:

How will stannis react to faegon or danny? Does anyone think that stannis is capable of establishing an aliance with one of these characters?

Not when they are trying to win the same throne he is. Stannis will suffer no other kings, or queens presumably. Personally I don't think he will get that far but if he does then more room for more story.

10 hours ago, divica said:

And I think I could continue building a list of how there is no point in having stannis winning the battle of winterfell.

If anything it's a list of how there could be more story.

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Posted (edited)
41 minutes ago, The Coconut God said:

the weight of Jon's death doesn't come from the plot itself. It's his own arc that leads to this, his own mistake crowning a series of other, smaller mistakes that are apparent in the text. From this perspective, the author of the letter is irrelevant. Jon was assassinated because his love for his sister most of all, and maybe to a lesser degree his respect towards Stannis and Mance, made him crack and break his vows. First he favored Stannis, then he interfered in the politics of the North by arresting a nobleman and brokering a marriage with a wildling, then he allowed even more wildlings through and gave them castles, all purportedly for the sake of the Watch... until finally he straight out rallied himself an army to go and attack Winterfell. That's all about him, about Jon's soul in conflict to itself. The fact that the letter was just a psychopath's rant doesn't take anything away from this, it adds to the tragedy.

A very well written opinion and a very good conclusion. I agree this could provide a kind of literary satisfaction for a lot of the readership. I just happen to be on the side of the argument that thinks Jon has been in a completely impossible situation right from when Qhorin asks him to break his vows in order to keep them. Stannis showing up at CB is an extension of this conflict, but that's just one view, of course. Will stop on that topic here to avoid derailment of this thread.

You make very good points about  PL authorship fitting into the wider story, and that is a good final filter to apply to the theories still left standing. I haven't spent too much time on big picture story-external analysis of the best theories, before understanding if the scenario stood up story-internally first. I'm a big skeptic of ravens sent from CV, it was through the course of the thread it became clear to me that a lot of the theories are possible with the raven sent from WF. Here of course the discussions around motivations and the tactic fitting into the character's story arc take over completely.

Smear Vs button (of pink wax) brings into play CB interference on top of an original letter (but if the original letter was from CV, then I wouldn't be very happy, but that just might be me) - of course this might just be opening the letter and reading it, but why is it not wet, there is just so much in here!

 

 

Edited by Ser Hedge

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21 minutes ago, The Coconut God said:

That's great. I can also disagree that your arguments against the Ramsay theory are convincing. ;)

I apologize if I offended you, maybe I was too harsh with my judgment. I assure you that the intention was entirely pedantic and not at all personal. :P

It's just a discussion and we are free to disagree. It's a good debate. A recent reddit poll put Ramsay at 48% and Stannis at 11% so I expect a lot of disagreement. But I can only put forward my case as best I can and maybe give some people something to think about. My interest is not in any particular theory or character but in analysis of the story we all love. And when someone presents an objection that I can't fairly get around, like the raven from the crofters village, then I am happy to accept I was wrong and change my position accordingly.

34 minutes ago, The Coconut God said:

If you think the Stannis scenario can further the story, it might be interesting to explore that.

The fact that it brought the plot to where it is now means nothing, because that would have happened regardless of who wrote the letter. I don't think Stannis being the author adds anything thematically. it's just a "Gotcha!" twist reveal. This is my opinion and I won't argue it with you. ;)

I don't see it as gotcha. Because it grows from Stannis' character arc and circumstance as I see it. More gotcha from Ramsay but as you say we see it differently.

47 minutes ago, The Coconut God said:

The fact that the letter was just a psychopath's rant doesn't take anything away from this, it adds to the tragedy. I believe making a twist of it would actually detract from the story, because then people would be discussing the twist instead Jon very subtle yet very deep character study. 

As for Stannis, if he was the author, that would only cement him as a failure, which might seem fitting on a superficial level, but doesn't really work in depth.

You will have to take this up with George after Winds.:P

49 minutes ago, The Coconut God said:

he was set up to "break before he bends".

We are told that, we are shown something else.

51 minutes ago, The Coconut God said:

Failing at a subversive plot is not thematically relevant for him, it isn't him breaking because he refuses to bend... if anything, it is bending, slipping and falling on his face. And it falls flat, because we wouldn't expect Stannis to be good at subversive plots anyway... and it's such a far fetched plot that nobody would put much hope in it anyway. So where's the drama, where's the tension, where's the surprise? 

You and I read Stannis very differently.

52 minutes ago, The Coconut God said:

It's just a dumb plan that fails... Duh! Even worse, we see it fail before we see it being cooked. 

Only if you fail to see it being cooked all through the novel.

54 minutes ago, The Coconut God said:

This is fair enough.

I hope you will forgive me, but I won't get into your other points and barbs, because I'd be here all day splitting hairs and I can't really afford that. :P I think my arguments remain standing in spite of them, but that's just my opinion. Those who follow the discussion will be able to make up their own minds about that.

That is fair enough.

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I think it's only possible for the letter to exist is if Ramsay won the battle (or at least think he won the battle), regardless of if HE wrote it or not.

If Stannis wins there is no real reason for Stannis or anyone else to taunt Jon. (because that is the purpose of the letter no matter who wrote it - to goad and taunt Jon into leaving CB)

So if we go with that scenario - Ramsay wins, I think the likeliest contender is Mance. Two assumptions we have to make here are that the Spearwives didn't rat out Mance (because they were likely caught after helping Theon and Jeyne) and that Mance wasn't caught. Both of those are very plausible as Mance has his people's loyalty which was established many times before and Mance is a fairly smart chap himself.

I'm not going to go into motives since there are a lot of scenarios and motives for each character to have written the letter. Mance's is obviously to get Jon to attack Winterfell and perhaps further reinforce whatever scheming is going on inside and outside the castle.

Another strong reason for me and one that a lot of people overlook is the language used. Take away all the blood, skin, seal that wasn't there and look at the words used and how they are put together. False king, magic sword, red whore, King-beyond-the-wall, Mance Rayder, wildling princess, little prince, wildling babe, Black Crows.
Take away the fact that all of those are things that Mance is explicitly aware of. He uses words that Ramsay or Stannis would not use or at least not if they for some reason roleplayed as a Wildling.

The best reason for me personally is that this creates the most interesting scenario. There is uncertainty at Winterfell, we don't know who is alive or dead among the conspirators and Bolton loyalists, what happened to Stannis, Mance, his spearwives, Ramsay, Roose, Wyman, Barbrey etc. And we have potential prisoner/investigation type POV's with limited knowledge at Winterfell from either of the Greyjoy siblings assuming they were captured or snuck in.

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36 minutes ago, MostlyMoody said:

Ramsay wins, I think the likeliest contender is Mance. 

Can I be annoying and ask who collaborates to send the raven? Whoresbane or one of the three WF Maesters? If the latter, clearly another lord/lady is helping - who please? Just trying to flesh out all the variants of all the theories, that's all, otherwise we keep going in circles.

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