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the Last Teague

Marston Waters, most decisive Lord Commander EVER

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I definitely don't think following the Greens made you a bad person. Was Jason Lannister a bad person? I don't think so. He died fighting for the Green cause, though. This goes back to Eustace Osgrey's remark in "The Sworn Sword":

Quote

When two princes fight over a chair where only one may sit,great lords and common men alike must choose.

There were definitely bad actors on both sides, and people who followed the various people for reasons other than a belief that the one they followed had the right to the throne. We don't know that Waters followed Aegon for good or bad reasons, so we can't say. What we seem to see, though, is that he was a man who got in well over his head, who was manipulated by others at a complicated time in the history of Westeros, but in the end he recognized he had been a pawn to others and made the right choice at a key moment.

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On 6/6/2019 at 9:16 PM, Ran said:

I definitely don't think following the Greens made you a bad person. Was Jason Lannister a bad person? I don't think so. He died fighting for the Green cause, though.

The way Gyldayn frames things Lord Jason doesn't count as a committed Green in my book. He raised a rather small host and only at the explicit command of the Prince Regent when Aemond and Cole planned to crush the Black Riverlords between two hosts.

The way it seems to me Tyland Lannister was the Green Lannister, and Jason just followed the lead of his twin brother there. Neither of them seems to have been very committed to 'the Green cause' as such considering both tried to win Rhaenyra's hand in marriage back during her royal progress in the 110s. If Rhaenyra's consort had been Lord Jason or Ser Tyland Lannister Casterly Rock would have stood firmly in the Black camp.

But you certainly are right that there were men in the service of the Greens who were not that bad - Lord Mooton after his defection, say, and I guess a man like Grover Tully also had principles one could admire, but in the end it really seems that most men siding with the Greens were morally darker than the Blacks.

Or to be more precise, that goes at least for all those people who Gyldayn casts some light on. The cabal helping the Hightowers and Cole with their coup betrayed their king and his anointed heir. Alicent's sons all turned out to be rotten people - even gentle Daeron, when he insisted to brutally sack the town of Bitterbridge despite the fact that Lady Caswell had already punished the murderers of Prince Maelor. The men helping Aegon II to take Dragonstone were all thugs. The men betraying Rhaenyra with the Two Betrayers at Tumbleton were thugs, too. Ser Perkin the Flea was a disgusting person as well, etc.

The only men I recall right now that I'd say were decent/good men were Rickard Thorne - he did his duty as KG and died a loyal man -, and, up to a point, Marston Waters, considering he was not one of the thugs Aegon II utilized to take Dragonstone. Tyland Lannister also seems to count as a fellow who is not that bad, but that his better deeds are done under Aegon III, back under Aegon II he seems to have been little more than an ambitious guy who hoped to gain high office by helping Alicent with the coup.

Ormund Hightower and his cousin just get name-dropped, meaning we don't know what kind of people they were, and most of the men of the Hightower army we later get to know are despicable or not exactly impressive people, too.

But against those guys you really have an army of men that are despicable to various degrees.

In the Black camp it is pretty much the opposite - there is a literal army of great and noble (and interesting) people against a few cruel thugs (which are basically just Blood and Cheese and Mysaria).

In that sense there is no question that the Green side is portrayed in a worse light, especially if you also take the moral high ground of the Blacks into account. They were in the right, they did not start the war/only fought back, and they only started to (cruelly) kill people in retaliation to atrocities done to their side.

On 6/6/2019 at 9:16 PM, Ran said:

We don't know that Waters followed Aegon for good or bad reasons, so we can't say.

While we disagree in our interpretations of Waters motives during the Regency I'm completely with you on Waters during the Dance. He was an average man who tried to do what he thought was his duty - protecting Aegon II - to the best of his abilities.

However, I'm reasonably certain that Waters own views on who should be king didn't really matter when he was charged by Lord Larys to keep Aegon II safe. The reason Waters was chosen for that task seem to have been hinged on two accidental facts: (1) that he had kin on Dragonstone and thus was able to hide Aegon II on Rhaenyra's island, and (2) that he was so insignificant a man that nobody of Rhaenyra's party would look for the man after he was gone.

This implies, in my opinion, that Lord Strong actually paid Ser Marston Waters handsomely to keep the king safe. He would not have been a man with any connections to the court before he was named Aegon II's sworn shield. It is also quite clear, one assumes, that Waters and his ilk would have immediately given up Aegon II to Rhaenyra's people had the hunters come knocking at their doors (before Sunfyre came to Dragonstone).

Waters got his promotion to the KG because Aegon II owed him for hiding him when he was in dire need - and he also had pretty much no access to decent knights and men of quality until after he had returned to KL to name new KG.

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