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Black Crow

Heresy 220 and the nature of magic

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I like the notion that a 'nightwalker' is someone who is invading other people's dreams via glass candles.  We have Quaithe's warning about the glass candles burning in the house of Urragon Nightwalker and I wonder whose dreams are being invaded.
 

Quote

 

A Game of Thrones - Bran IV

Summer followed them up the tower steps as Hodor carried Bran back to his bed. Old Nan was asleep in her chair. Hodor said "Hodor," gathered up his great-grandmother, and carried her off, snoring softly, while Bran lay thinking. Robb had promised that he could feast with the Night's Watch in the Great Hall. "Summer," he called. The wolf bounded up on the bed. Bran hugged him so hard he could feel the hot breath on his cheek. "I can ride now," he whispered to his friend. "We can go hunting in the woods soon, wait and see." After a time he slept.

In his dream he was climbing again, pulling himself up an ancient windowless tower, his fingers forcing themselves between blackened stones, his feet scrabbling for purchase. Higher and higher he climbed, through the clouds and into the night sky, and still the tower rose before him. When he paused to look down, his head swam dizzily and he felt his fingers slipping. Bran cried out and clung for dear life. The earth was a thousand miles beneath him and he could not fly. He could not fly. He waited until his heart had stopped pounding, until he could breathe, and he began to climb again. There was no way to go but up. Far above him, outlined against a vast pale moon, he thought he could see the shapes of gargoyles. His arms were sore and aching, but he dared not rest. He forced himself to climb faster. The gargoyles watched him ascend. Their eyes glowed red as hot coals in a brazier. Perhaps once they had been lions, but now they were twisted and grotesque. Bran could hear them whispering to each other in soft stone voices terrible to hear. He must not listen, he told himself, he must not hear, so long as he did not hear them he was safe. But when the gargoyles pulled themselves loose from the stone and padded down the side of the tower to where Bran clung, he knew he was not safe after all. "I didn't hear," he wept as they came closer and closer, "I didn't, I didn't."

He woke gasping, lost in darkness, and saw a vast shadow looming over him. "I didn't hear," he whispered, trembling in fear, but then the shadow said "Hodor," and lit the candle by the bedside, and Bran sighed with relief.

 

Eyes glowing red like coals in a brazier reminds me that glass candles are used in conjunction with fire in braziers (I think).  Anyone looking through the fire will have red eyes like coals.   On the surface, this seems like a dream about discovering Cersei and Jaime; but the twisted forms might be the true form of red r'hllorists.  He is being watched and stalked by them and is able to break into their conversation in the same way that BR and Bran broke into Mel's fire vision.

The other person I suspect of having dream interference is Cersei.  Her dreams become increasingly paranoid and creepy after the arrival of Qyburn.   

 

 

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2 minutes ago, LynnS said:

Eyes glowing red like coals in a brazier reminds me that glass candles are used in conjunction with fire in braziers (I think).  Anyone looking through the fire will have red eyes like coals.   On the surface, this seems like a dream about discovering Cersei and Jaime; but the twisted forms might be the true form of red r'hllorists.  He is being watched and stalked by them and is able to break into their conversation in the same way that BR and Bran broke into Mel's fire vision.

The other person I suspect of having dream interference is Cersei.  Her dreams become increasingly paranoid and creepy after the arrival of Qyburn.   

My issue with this is that what Red Priest would even know about Bran, let alone be actively spying on him? 

 

As to Cersei, both her and Jaime start experiencing odd dreams once they meet Qyburn. We are never told what he did to be kicked out of the Citadel, just that it was awful. But he also worked with Marwin the Mage, so it is possible that Qyburn is invading their dreams or messing with their dreams somehow. 

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Posted (edited)
20 minutes ago, Janneyc1 said:

My issue with this is that what Red Priest would even know about Bran, let alone be actively spying on him? 

 

As to Cersei, both her and Jaime start experiencing odd dreams once they meet Qyburn. We are never told what he did to be kicked out of the Citadel, just that it was awful. But he also worked with Marwin the Mage, so it is possible that Qyburn is invading their dreams or messing with their dreams somehow. 

Bran has the sense that he is not as safe as he thought.  Whomever is watching him must know something about his purpose.  This is why Jojen shows up.  In effect to get Bran to safety beyond the Wall.  When he meets Ghost/Jon in the form of Tree/Bran, he tells Jon specifically that 'they' can't see him; but he can see them. 

I think Melisandre knows more about the ancient enemy that she tells us; not only that his name cannot be spoken; but must not be spoken.  The identity of the twisted forms in Bran's dream might be up for grabs; but I do think they know more about him either through the red flames and/or glass candles.   

I think that someone is toying with Cersei in her dreams.  Qyburn doesn't actually like her all that much.

Edited by LynnS

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2 hours ago, Feather Crystal said:

I think it's telling that the least interesting aspect of last night's episode was Jon and Daenerys. The "big anticipated telling" was quite boring, and her reaction was confusing.

Not very sensible, was it?  Much like Jon's reaction to being told last week.

I wonder if the show is setting up Dany to morph into a rabid Targ who will have to be put down for the good of Westeros, like the Mad King before her.

1 hour ago, Black Crow said:

the Mummers have turned GRRM's story into an extended Game of Thrones, while losing the Song of Ice and Fire

Well, they're doing ice and fire. They're just doing it very poorly, with no real command of continuity.  If Cogman is responsible for this debacle, I don't know why GRRM would ever want to work with him.

Example: Varys's major show beat is when he is revealed as a teleporter who can go from Slaver's Bay to Dorne and back inside one episode.

OK.  That makes zero sense, but whatever.  Having established him as a teleporter, you'd think the besieged characters would now, as a matter of continuity, use him. 

For instance, they could hand Varys a dragonglass dagger, have him teleport behind Night King, and stab him in the back.

Poof!  Problem solved.  :D

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1 minute ago, JNR said:

Not very sensible, was it?  Much like Jon's reaction to being told last week.

I wonder if the show is setting up Dany to morph into a rabid Targ who will have to be put down for the good of Westeros, like the Mad King before her.

Mace Cooteran has a theory that Jon will be forced into thrusting Longclaw into Daenerys heart in order to become Azor Ahai.

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2 minutes ago, LynnS said:

Bran has the sense that he is not as safe as he thought.  Whomever is watching him must know something about his purpose.  This is why Jojen shows up.  In effect to get Bran to safety beyond the Wall.  When he meets Ghost/Jon in the form of Tree/Bran, he tells Jon specifically that 'they' can't see him; but he can see them. 

I think Melisandre knows more about the ancient enemy that she tells us; not only that his name cannot be spoken; but must not be spoken.  The identity of the twisted forms in Bran's dream might be up for grabs; but I do think they know more about him either through the red flames and/or glass candles.   

Regarding Mel, how much of what she knows comes from the Red Priesthood and how much comes from her training in Shadowbinding? I do agree that she knows more than what she is telling though. 

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17 minutes ago, Feather Crystal said:

Anybody have any theories as to why they played a song about Jenny of Oldstones last night?

 

It's a good question because the lyrics for song can't be found under any POV in any book according to a search of ice and fire.  So this is another fiction made up for the show.  What's crazy is that reviewers are giving a nod to books as if it exists there when it doesn't except by reference as Jenny's Song.

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2 hours ago, Feather Crystal said:

The show is conflating the Night's King with the Great Other, or in Melisandre's words, "He Who Shall Not Be Named". Speaking of Melisandre - where is she? She of all the characters was expecting a great battle between the two gods, so if D&D is making the Night's King representative of the Great Other, where is Melisandre and her Lord of Light?

I am thinking that both D&D and Mel might be anthropomorphizing into the NK and the Great Other a cleanup process that might not have human motivations or traits at all. About Melisandre in the show, I would bet that she comes back at the last minute with a suicide squad of Fiery Hand ninjas.

2 hours ago, Feather Crystal said:

I think it's telling that the least interesting aspect of last night's episode was Jon and Daenerys. The "big anticipated telling" was quite boring, and her reaction was confusing. Dany just got done telling Sansa that she has allowed Jon to manipulate her, because she fell in love with with him, and yet she walked away, either in disbelief or dismay that he could be her nephew, rather than embrace their traditional Targaryen incest by acknowledgement and acceptance.

Yes, they are not handling very well their merge of Jon and (f)Aegon

2 hours ago, Feather Crystal said:

I didn't like the Arya and Gendry hookup at all. It was a bit jarring and revolting. In the books she's still, what, 12-13 years old at the end of Dance?

IIRC she is still 12 in the books, but GRRM went a lot further with Mercy and Raff the sweetling. In the show she would be closer to 18 (starts at eleven and 6 or 7 years have passed).

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29 minutes ago, LynnS said:

It's a good question because the lyrics for song can't be found under any POV in any book according to a search of ice and fire.  So this is another fiction made up for the show.  What's crazy is that reviewers are giving a nod to books as if it exists there when it doesn't except by reference as Jenny's Song.

Well, I think they're trying to bring to mind Jenny of Oldstone's association with House Mudd, which was completely annihilated, and Jenny's claim that she was nobility was generally not accepted. She's a tragic character and I think the song is foreshadowing the end of House Stark - on the show, that is.

6 minutes ago, Tucu said:

I am thinking that both D&D and Mel might be anthropomorphizing into the NK and the Great Other a cleanup process that might not have human motivations or traits at all. About Melisandre in the show, I would bet that she comes back at the last minute with a suicide squad of Fiery Hand ninjas.

Yes, they are not handling very well their merge of Jon and (f)Aegon

IIRC she is still 12 in the books, but GRRM went a lot further with Mercy and Raff the sweetling. In the show she would be closer to 18 (starts at eleven and 6 or 7 years have passed).

In the Mercy chapter, I believe other characters recognize her young age, but it's exactly her young age that is appealing to Raff. We're meant to be totally disgusted with him as being a pervert along with his history of killing Lommy, which is the reason why Arya had him on her list. Gendry is supposed to be a more honorable version of Robert, but show Gendry didn't question Arya's desire and hopped right into the sack(s) with her - which magically morphed into a bed by the time we see them together on screen again.

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3 hours ago, Feather Crystal said:

I think it's telling that the least interesting aspect of last night's episode was Jon and Daenerys. The "big anticipated telling" was quite boring, and her reaction was confusing. Dany just got done telling Sansa that she has allowed Jon to manipulate her, because she fell in love with with him, and yet she walked away, either in disbelief or dismay that he could be her nephew, rather than embrace their traditional Targaryen incest by acknowledgement and acceptance

I think I agree with Dany on this one.  Jon is supposed to be the heir to the realm, but the only people that know it are his brother and his best friend?  Sounds like BS to me too, Dany.  ;)

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Posted (edited)
45 minutes ago, LynnS said:

It's a good question because the lyrics for song can't be found under any POV in any book according to a search of ice and fire.  So this is another fiction made up for the show.  What's crazy is that reviewers are giving a nod to books as if it exists there when it doesn't except by reference as Jenny's Song.

The first part of the song is in the ASoS epilogue.

Quote

Fallen leaves lay thick upon the ground, like soldiers after some great slaughter. A man in patched, faded greens was sitting crosslegged atop a weathered stone sepulcher, fingering the strings of a woodharp. The music was soft and sad. Merrett knew the song. High in the halls of the kings who are gone, Jenny would dance with her ghosts . . .

Regarding why they played it...well most of them will probably not survive the next battle so they will be ghosts too.

BTW, dancing with ghosts reminds me of Mirri's ritual and Thistle dancing with Varamyr. Kinds of fits with what probably happened at Summerhal

Edited by Tucu

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2 hours ago, JNR said:

To be fair, though, I think much of the magic of that book lay in Clarke's superlative prose and the footnotes in particular (possibly the best in the history of F/SF), which couldn't translate well. 

I agree with the bolded, and I think the BBC faced a similar issue with attempting to adapt Gormenghast, a work that is often categorized as 'fantasy' despite having no particular supernatural elements--rather, that designation is a credit to the atmosphere created by the author's prose, and the loss of that prose robs the work of its surreal and fantastical quality.
 

1 hour ago, Janneyc1 said:

I think Euron will show us how the Popsicles are controlling the masses. euron is shaping up to be an eldritch badass, who got his start in magic from BR. I think when he got exiled, he traveled to Qarth, took the name Urrathon and started learning how to do night walking. I think Night Walking is the involuntary possession of a person and may be how the Popsicles are controlling their wights. Note, I think that Night Walking requires a glass candle and that someone will find a glass candle at the Night fort or in the crypts of Winterfell.

Along these lines, Euron shows the world his "smiling eye," while his "blood eye" is hidden, though it is described as "dark and terrible." I've wondered whether or not he has heterochromia with one red eye (with albinism tending to be symbolically linked to the weirwood), or on the more crackpot front, whether he lost his original eye and replaced it with a false eye of dragonglass. Though, on the latter, I don't know whether obsidian is too brittle to be worked into a sphere smooth enough to safely function as a false eye.

I also wonder whether or not to view Euron as a player or a pawn; rather than all of his occult interests giving him special insight, they might have also made him particularly vulnerable to manipulation.

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3 hours ago, Feather Crystal said:

I think it's telling that the least interesting aspect of last night's episode was Jon and Daenerys. The "big anticipated telling" was quite boring, and her reaction was confusing. Dany just got done telling Sansa that she has allowed Jon to manipulate her, because she fell in love with with him, and yet she walked away, either in disbelief or dismay that he could be her nephew, rather than embrace their traditional Targaryen incest by acknowledgement and acceptance.

I did feel some tears welling up, however when Sansa hugged Theon, and when Jaime knighted Brienne. Those are two things that I would actually like to read in the next book.

After two(ish) hours of television, the only things I've really liked this season are:
- The attempts throughout s08e01 to parallel the cinematography of thematically similar scenes from s01e01
- Dany and Sam's interaction
- Jaime knighting Brienne

I am somewhat curious as to what the overall act structure of this season is going to be--it feels to me like they're setting the table for the battle against the WWs to be resolved soon, and for Dany to become the primary issue for the back half of the season, even more so than Cersei.

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38 minutes ago, Matthew. said:

Along these lines, Euron shows the world his "smiling eye," while his "blood eye" is hidden, though it is described as "dark and terrible." I've wondered whether or not he has heterochromia with one red eye (with albinism tending to be symbolically linked to the weirwood), or on the more crackpot front, whether he lost his original eye and replaced it with a false eye of dragonglass. Though, on the latter, I don't know whether obsidian is too brittle to be worked into a sphere smooth enough to safely function as a false eye.

I also wonder whether or not to view Euron as a player or a pawn; rather than all of his occult interests giving him special insight, they might have also made him particularly vulnerable to manipulation.

I could have sworn that Mors Umber had a dragonglass eye. If obsidian can be shaped, I don't see why they couldn't have used it to make a false eye. 

I suspect that Euron is a player in the game of thrones, but a pawn in the great game. You are right though, his occult knowledge would make him more susceptible to manipulation. 

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Posted (edited)
16 minutes ago, Janneyc1 said:

I could have sworn that Mors Umber had a dragonglass eye. If obsidian can be shaped, I don't see why they couldn't have used it to make a false eye. 

You're right, I'd totally forgotten about Mors' eye. As to using obsidian as a false eye, I was just overthinking it, wondering whether or not taking the eye in and out or having it jostle around in your head would be an infection risk. :dunno:

Edited by Matthew.

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2 minutes ago, Matthew. said:

You're right, I'd totally forgotten about Mors' eye. As to using obsidian as a false eye, I was just overthinking it, wondering whether or not taking the eye in and out or having it jostle around in your head would be an infection risk. 

It's ok, this fandom specializes in overthinking. I would think that it would increase the risk of infection, but if they are using it for magic, that may sterilize the area. 

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3 hours ago, Matthew. said:

I agree with the bolded, and I think the BBC faced a similar issue with attempting to adapt Gormenghast, a work that is often categorized as 'fantasy' despite having no particular supernatural elements--rather, that designation is a credit to the atmosphere created by the author's prose, and the loss of that prose robs the work of its surreal and fantastical quality.
 

Along these lines, Euron shows the world his "smiling eye," while his "blood eye" is hidden, though it is described as "dark and terrible." I've wondered whether or not he has heterochromia with one red eye (with albinism tending to be symbolically linked to the weirwood), or on the more crackpot front, whether he lost his original eye and replaced it with a false eye of dragonglass. Though, on the latter, I don't know whether obsidian is too brittle to be worked into a sphere smooth enough to safely function as a false eye.

I also wonder whether or not to view Euron as a player or a pawn; rather than all of his occult interests giving him special insight, they might have also made him particularly vulnerable to manipulation.

I'm confused about why Euron is later called the blood eye.  I've always thought his eye was black like a crow.  Thus the name Crow's Eye.  The smiling eye is blue.  I thought the eye was covered by a patch (alternately a red or black patch) because the pupil was always dilated from injury caused when he fell off the cliff as a boy.
 

Quote

 

The Winds of Winter - Theon I

Stannis snorted. "You fell. Umber saved her. If Mors Crowfood and his men had not been outside the castle, Bolton would have had the both of you back in moments."

Crowfood. Theon remembered. An old man, huge and powerful, with a ruddy face and a shaggy white beard. He had been seated on a garron, clad in the pelt of a gigantic snow bear, its head his hood. Under it he wore a stained white leather eye patch that reminded Theon of his uncle Euron. He'd wanted to rip it off Umber's face, to make certain that underneath was only an empty socket, not a black eye shining with malice. Instead he had whimpered through his broken teeth and said, "I am — "

 

I'm not sure what has changed to be called blood eye now.  But I did notice that his personal sigil in the wiki has been changed from a black to a red eye.

My crackpot is that he wears the red patch when he is being used by another entity.  But in tWoW he no longer covers his eye at all.   

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4 hours ago, Frey family reunion said:

Jon is supposed to be the heir to the realm, but the only people that know it are his brother and his best friend?  Sounds like BS to me too, Dany.

We can go further yet.  When Jon was told, it might logically have gone like this:

Quote

 

JON: You say Rhaegar married Lyanna.

SAM: Right.

JON: But he was already married.

SAM: He had it annulled.

JON: But as everyone knows, you can only have a marriage annulled if it's not consummated.  Rhaegar had two children.  So clearly it was consummated.  Therefore whatever you read was bullshit; he can't have had it annulled.  So if Rhaegar is my father, there's no possible way I'm legitimate, which means your whole case that I am the rightful king shatters into a thousand pieces like a stabbed Popsicle.

SAM: (pauses)

JON: Nice try, though.  (Slaps Sam's back.)  You almost had me there for a minute.

 

But the show, as we all know,  is not a model of logical continuity.

4 hours ago, Matthew. said:

it feels to me like they're setting the table for the battle against the WWs to be resolved soon, and for Dany to become the primary issue for the back half of the season, even more so than Cersei

Wouldn't be the least surprised.  I fully expect her to die in the last episode and this might be how.

Several times we've been reminded what Dany did to Lord Tarly and his son.  This could well be intended as setup -- the idea being that as Dany continues to morph into a brutal autocrat, she comes into conflict with Jon, Sansa, et al, so that in time some thoughtful soul puts her out of her misery (and ours).

If it's Mormont using Heartsbane, I'd be pleased, though Tarly's sword, as instrument of justice wielded by Dany's former senior adviser, would seem a bit on the nose.

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1 hour ago, LynnS said:

I'm confused about why Euron is later called the blood eye.  I've always thought his eye was black like a crow.  Thus the name Crow's Eye.  The smiling eye is blue.  I thought the eye was covered by a patch (alternately a red or black patch) because the pupil was always dilated from injury caused when he fell off the cliff as a boy.

It's been too long since I've read certain chapters, so I'd forgotten this warning from Rodrik the Reader to Asha that might contextualize why Aeron thinks of the hidden eye as the "blood eye:"

Quote

Euron shows the world his smiling eye tonight, but come the morrow … Asha, you are Balon's daughter, and your claim is stronger than his own. So long as you draw breath you remain a danger to him.

It may be an in-world metaphor for Euron's madness, and an unstable personality--he shows the world his "smiling eye" when he's in good spirits, but the "blood eye" foreshadows violence.

In any case, you're right that the hidden eye is always described as black--both literally, by characters that know Euron, and figuratively, as in Moqorro's vision.

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