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Lord Varys

Who is going to get poisoned by the mushrooms?

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We are talking about Tyrion's mushrooms from ADwD, of course. Tyrion kept some of them after killing both Yezzan and Nurse, so there are still some mushrooms left to use later. And the fact that George deliberately told us that Tyrion kept them implies he already knows how Tyrion is going to use them later. He knows Tyrion is going to (have to) use that poison later. Back when I read I thought it might be used much later in the story on Illyrio and/or Varys as payback, but that would be pretty far down the road. Prior to that Tyrion is likely going to get into a lot of dangerous situations, so who could be the next victim?

Brown Ben Plumm or some other Second Sons? Crucial players in Meereen (Skahaz, Reznak, Hizdahr, the Green Grace)? Barristan Selmy? Victarion Greyjoy? Some Yunkish guys and/or Volantenes who are going to come?

Has anybody ever discussed that loose end?

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Harry the heir?  

I don't know, man.  Whoever beats the second sons and then makes a show of eating Tyrion's lunch.  "No, please not those mushrooms!  They're a rare delicacy I was saving to share with my sister when we finally reconciled."

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Look at the pattern so far.  Victarion is as good a candidate as any.  That arm is not going to heal properly.  The mushrooms will put the ironborn out of his misery after he delivers the fleet to our favorite dragon queen.

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3 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

Brown Ben Plumm or some other Second Sons?

This. He have a huge debt with them and they are not trustworthy and an obstacle to his full plans. Tyrion's last words as he saw the poisoned Nurse die looks very telling:

  • ADWD, Tyrion XI
    "[...] Watered wine and lemonsweet and some nice hot dogtail soup, with slivers of mushroom in the broth. Drink it down, Nursey, that shitwater squirting from your arse needs to be replaced. The last word Nurse ever said was, "No." The last words he ever heard were, "A Lannister always pays his debts."

Since only Ben's, Kasporio's and Inkpots' promissories are made out by name, with their death a huge part of the debt is over.

However, it doesn't look like Tyrion to do such a premeditated murder based on debts and power play. He does it when things get personal, when affects his ego, proud or someone he loves. He needs some other kind of justification. Maybe they'd do something bad to Penny. I don't know.

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3 minutes ago, Ckram said:

This. He have a huge debt with them and they are not trustworthy and an obstacle to his full plans. Tyrion's last words as he saw the poisoned Nurse die looks very telling:

  • ADWD, Tyrion XI
    "[...] Watered wine and lemonsweet and some nice hot dogtail soup, with slivers of mushroom in the broth. Drink it down, Nursey, that shitwater squirting from your arse needs to be replaced. The last word Nurse ever said was, "No." The last words he ever heard were, "A Lannister always pays his debts."

Since only Ben's, Kasporio's and Inkpots' promissories are made out by name, with their death a huge part of the debt is over.

However, it doesn't look like Tyrion to do such a premeditated murder based on debts and power play. He does it when things get personal, when affects his ego, proud or someone he loves. He needs some other kind of justification. Maybe they'd do something bad to Penny. I don't know.

Well, if Ben ends up claiming a dragon there is likely going to be a time when Tyrion is going to pull a Caltrops on him...

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1 minute ago, Lord Varys said:

Ben ends up claiming a dragon

Jesus. Poor Viserion.

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7 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

We are talking about Tyrion's mushrooms from ADwD, of course. Tyrion kept some of them after killing both Yezzan and Nurse,

Are we sure that Yezzan was poisoned as well. The text is clear about Nurse, but not about Yezzan

 

7 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

so there are still some mushrooms left to use later. And the fact that George deliberately told us that Tyrion kept them implies he already knows how Tyrion is going to use them later. He knows Tyrion is going to (have to) use that poison later. Back when I read I thought it might be used much later in the story on Illyrio and/or Varys as payback, but that would be pretty far down the road. Prior to that Tyrion is likely going to get into a lot of dangerous situations, so who could be the next victim?

Brown Ben Plumm or some other Second Sons?

See below

7 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

Crucial players in Meereen (Skahaz, Reznak, Hizdahr, the Green Grace)?

I think the Green Grace is a strong candidate (Reznak too) or whoever poisoned the locusts. It depends whether Tyrion gets to sort out Meeren until Dany returns.  

 

7 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

Barristan Selmy? Victarion Greyjoy? Some Yunkish guys and/or Volantenes who are going to come?

Has anybody ever discussed that loose end?

Maybe, he will try to poison Moqorro and get - almost - a Cressen's moment.

4 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

Well, if Ben ends up claiming a dragon there is likely going to be a time when Tyrion is going to pull a Caltrops on him...

I don't think Ben will claim a dragon, but I'm quite sure he will help to tame Viserion for Tyrion (maybe Missandei will be of help too).

No, I don't think there will be major conflicts between Ben and Tyrion. The Second Sons are now Tyrion's little army. Tyrion has also experience dealing with this sort of people.  My head-canon for Ben's future is that he will end replacing the Westerosi Plumm's after the later declare for Aegon and get roasted later for that.

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Somebody has to ride Rhaegal. Else the dragon is going to stay in Slaver's Bay. We have Tyrion for Viserion, and Victarion could only claim Rhaegal if Dragonbinder worked properly. If it doesn't then somebody else has to do that. Which means Ben really is the only candidate left.

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It's possible, that Tyrion will use those mushrooms to poison Penny and himself. In Aeron's chapter in TWOW, under influence of a shade of the evening, he had a vision in which Euron (on Iron Throne) and Cersei were amused by two dwarfs - male and female, while Shiera Seastar (shadow in a woman's form, with pale white fire in her hands) was watching that scene from afar thru usage of a glass candle. So Tyrion could try to poison Penny and himself, to save themselves from what is worse than death (like being Cersei's prisoners). Though Dany will manage to save at least Tyrion. Because Shiera, who is a shadowbinder Quaithe, will inform Dany that Tyrion is in trouble (by that time Tyrion will be already one of Dany's people).

30 minutes ago, Lord Varys said:

Somebody has to ride Rhaegal. Else the dragon is going to stay in Slaver's Bay. We have Tyrion for Viserion, and Victarion could only claim Rhaegal if Dragonbinder worked properly. If it doesn't then somebody else has to do that. Which means Ben really is the only candidate left.

Dragonbinder won't work (and Euron knows it, that's why he gave it to Victarion). You have to be Valyrian and dragonlord to use it without damage to your life, or something like that. Moqorro hinted to Victarion, how he will die - in dragonfire. Tyrion is not a secret Targaryen, he will never ride a dragon (unless Dany or Jon will take him along for a ride, like Queen Visenya did for Ronnel Arryn). Dany will return from Dothraki Sea with her son Rhaego, and he will ride Rhaegel. This was obvious since the scene of Drogo's funeral pyre in AGOT. Jon will be Viseryon's dragonrider. This is also obvious, based on the same scene.

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The literary clues about mushrooms may offer some help in making predictions.

The other significant "mushroom" in GRRM's Westeros is Mushroom the court historian, a dwarf fool in the court of Viserys I. In The World of Ice and Fire, we often get variations on the details surrounding historical events, with Mushroom's version the one that is most titillating or that reflects something scandalous about powerful people. Of course, this is all part of GRRM's "unreliable narrator" approach to storytelling, and the reader has to make a judgment call about what he or she believes. In my opinion, the author intends that readers take Mushroom's version as being closer to the truth than the sanitized versions offered by maesters or more serious scholars. If Mushroom's version is not literally true in every case, we can be sure that there is an important symbol or metaphor in it that we can use to discern the truth.

This relationship between mushrooms and truth and dwarfs seems to be continued in Tyrion's arc. When Tyrion is searching for Tysha, I believe this is a thinly-veiled symbolic search for truth. (Crofter's daughter = sacred truth forge?) Tywin and Jaime lied to Tyrion, betraying him. Tysha was the only person who didn't lie to him.

When Tyrion is enjoying the big meal with Ilyrio, he is offered some mushrooms. He doesn't know whether to eat them because he doesn't know whether they are poisoned. In other words, he doesn't know whether it is safe to know the truth. Ilyrio eats them and he is fine. I would have to go back to look at the details of the scene, but I think Tyrion is somewhat relieved that Ilyrio can safely eat the mushrooms, maybe a little embarrassed that he didn't trust them, yet he does not join Ilyrio in finishing off the dish.

Ilyrio does not know what we know, however: that Tyrion has picked up his own mushrooms from the grounds of Ilyrio's manse, and hidden them in his boot. And Tyrion's mushrooms really are poisonous, as we discover when he uses them on Nurse.

The Yezzan and Nurse interlude has several possible interpretations. As slaves for Yezzan, Tyrion and Penny are considered to be among his "treasures". The word "treasure" is used at key moments in ASOIAF, including when the men of the Night's Watch go digging for treasure at Molestown (i.e., visiting the brothel to have sex) and when Jon Snow is digging up the obsidian cache at the Fist. Oddly, I think the Molestown brothel brings us back to Tyrion's quest for Tysha / truth: the answer to the question, "Where do whores go?" is that they often go to brothels.

So what would be the connection between Jon Snow's obsidian cache and Tyrion's mushrooms?

The obsidian cache is a set of tools for defeating the white walkers. What if Tyrion's mushrooms are a similar tool? We know that some battles are won with weapons and some are won with words. (The quote from Tywin: "Some battles are won with swords and spears, others with quills and ravens.") Maybe Jon Snow's obsidian is for winning one kind of battle and Tyrion's mushrooms - symbolizing the truth? - are used for winning other kinds of battles. But the mushrooms are not really words, they are a poison. So maybe they are more like the obsidian after all, they just work in secret ways that can be hidden more easily than can a bleeding wound.

Nurse = runes? If this wordplay possibility is correct, Tyrion's use of the poison mushrooms to hasten Nurse's departure from this earth might be a signal that he is going to rewrite an ancient story that had been told with "runes," now using his (Tyrion's) own truth.

There are more literary clues: Tyrion carries the mushrooms in his boot. We see interesting symbolism around people taking other people's boots: Bran says skinchanging Hodor is like slipping into comfortable old boots; I believe Arya throws her boots into a canal along with the fingerless gloves, silver fork and floppy hat; Arya later takes the boots of Dareon the Night's Watch singer but they don't fit her; King Cleon sends fancy, impractical shoes to Dany and she wears them for awhile while sitting on her "throne" but they don't fit and she kicks them off as soon as possible. Perhaps the most relevant parallel is young Egg hiding his signet ring with the Targaryen crest in his boot -- he is hiding the truth of his Targaryen royal power and identity but he knows he can pull it out and use it to resolve a problem when necessary. Dunk discourages him from using the ring but later uses it himself, showing it to Rohanne Webber so she understands that Dunk is a Targaryen man and Egg is a Prince. I think Tyrion is almost certainly a hidden Targ, so the parallel between his mushrooms and Aegon V's ring seems particularly apt.

A broader examination of boots and shoes might help to clarify the reason Tyrion's mushrooms are in his boot.

We would probably also have to look at mushrooms in other contexts. At Joffrey's wedding feast, for instance,

The first dish was a creamy soup of mushrooms and buttered snails, served in gilded bowls. Tyrion had scarcely touched the breakfast, and the wine had already gone to his head, so the food was welcome. He finished quickly. One done, seventy-six to come...

Sansa tasted a spoonful of soup and pushed the bowl away. "Not to your liking, my lady?" Tyrion asked.

"There's to be so much, my lord. I have a little tummy." She fiddled nervously with her hair and looked down the table to where Joffrey sat with his Tyrell queen.

(ASoS, Chap. 60, Tyrion VIII)

This could be all the foreshadowing we need to predict that there will be a poisoning at this wedding feast. I think this excerpt also offers lovely support for the idea of mushrooms as representing truth: Tyrion can handle the truth - he hungrily polishes off his whole bowl of mushroom soup. Sansa, who is lying about being loyal to the Lannisters, and who is about to embark on a new set of lies with Littlefinger, tastes only one spoonful of the soup. (The reference to her tummy also picks up on a set of symbols surrounding butterflies and/or bats in her tummy, and a symbolic pregnancy planted in her tummy by Joffrey.)

But I am particularly intrigued by Tyrion using the word "liking" in his query to Sansa. I have been informally collecting words that end in "-king": walking, thinking, stinking. I think Jon Snow is the Wall king (walking) although the White Walkers may also be wal-kings. Gendry seems to be the Thin King. Bad odor is associated with Tywin, although I can't quite see him as a king, even a Stink King. Brienne meets Nimble Dick at the Stinking Goose, so that may be the place to sort out the stinking symbolism. But this is the first time I have noticed the word "liking". I bet GRRM is telling us that Joffrey is the Lie King - a usurper of the Baratheon monarchy. I wonder whether Joffrey was able to eat much of his mushroom ( = truth) soup? That kind of soup would probably be poison for a lie king.

 

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Do we even know that he has mushrooms left? I know he used some for that soup but I don't recall any actual text saying he had some left.

3 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

Somebody has to ride Rhaegal. Else the dragon is going to stay in Slaver's Bay. We have Tyrion for Viserion, and Victarion could only claim Rhaegal if Dragonbinder worked properly. If it doesn't then somebody else has to do that. Which means Ben really is the only candidate left.

Or .... the riderless dragons would just follow Dany wherever she flew Drogon?

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4 minutes ago, Universal Sword Donor said:

Do we even know that he has mushrooms left? I know he used some for that soup but I don't recall any actual text saying he had some left.

As I recall it is deliberately stated he had some left after Nurse.

4 minutes ago, Universal Sword Donor said:

Or .... the riderless dragons would just follow Dany wherever she flew Drogon?

Would be bad story-telling. Especially now that those dragons have effectively grown wild. They were imprisoned by their mother and now they are free and on their own. The longer they remain riderless the less interested are they going to become in being with humans. Drogon nearly killed Dany in the pit.

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1 minute ago, Lord Varys said:

As I recall it is deliberately stated he had some left after Nurse.

That's not really a textual quote. Hence why I asked

1 minute ago, Lord Varys said:

Would be bad story-telling. Especially now that those dragons have effectively grown wild. They were imprisoned by their mother and now they are free and on their own. The longer they remain riderless the less interested are they going to become in being with humans. Drogon nearly killed Dany in the pit.

You think it would be bad storytelling. Making Tyrion a secret Targ is even worse, if that's what you mean by he might be riding Rhaegal/Viserion. Think most of us assume Jon is going to be riding one of the dragons when that band gets to Westeros, so at least one dragon is likely to be riderless. Two isn't a great stretch

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I would say Victarion, but based on the Forsaken I actually think his burned arm is going to be what kills him, so I'll go with Hizdahr or Daario, to free up Dany to marry Aegon with no romantic rivals so that a unified Targaryen army can win him the Rock, rather than quibbling over whose claim is stronger. 

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2 hours ago, Universal Sword Donor said:

That's not really a textual quote. Hence why I asked

Thats what I always thought, but maybe not. So, in chapter Tyrion X, Tyrion has mushrooms. Like more then one. In fact he starts with 7, and Im pretty sure he only killed Nurse (but OP says Yezzan) so thats 6 (or 5). Nurse dies (chap XI) from "slivers of mushroom in the broth" so I guess thats one mushroom? But maybe not, slivers of mushrooms in the broth sounds grammatically incorrect, maybe...

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I might have missed something, but I thought Tyrion drowned Nurse in the soup or strangled him. One does not say "no" just because sb talks about soup's ingredients (mushrooms seem to be rather common part of diet). Tyrion found the mushrooms while with  hangover of his life and made himself believe he might escape eating them, but I am not sure if they even were lethal. They just looked as if they were, but maybe all you could get eating them would be a diarrhea (like in most cases with funky looking shrooms). 

What I am pretty sure of is that Yezzan died of the pale mare. 

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11 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

Somebody has to ride Rhaegal. Else the dragon is going to stay in Slaver's Bay. We have Tyrion for Viserion, and Victarion could only claim Rhaegal if Dragonbinder worked properly. If it doesn't then somebody else has to do that. Which means Ben really is the only candidate left.

Frog-Boy has already claimed Viserion. 

Rhaegal is the smallest of the dragons.  These dragons have only just started to reach the size where they can be ridden.  A dwarf will claim Rhaegal.

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2 minutes ago, Platypus Rex said:

Frog-Boy has already claimed Viserion. 

Rhaegal is the smallest of the dragons.  These dragons have only just started to reach the size where they can be ridden.  A dwarf will claim Rhaegal.

Quentyn Martell is dead.

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19 minutes ago, Lord Varys said:

Quentyn Martell is dead.

Young Griff, who is the real Quentyn Martell, will be dead soon enough.  Frog-Boy, who is the real Aegon VI, is alive, and will probably end up on the Iron Throne.

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6 minutes ago, Platypus Rex said:

Young Griff, who is the real Quentyn Martell, will be dead soon enough.  Frog-Boy, who is the real Aegon VI, is alive, and will probably end up on the Iron Throne.

Okay. What the hell do I know, anyway ;-).

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