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LHakaLH

Saddest chapters in ASOIAF

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I've read these books thrice now, and Catelyn VII from ACOK hit me in a way that left me feeling more sad than I have ever felt after a chapter. As shocking as the red wedding was and as horrible as other events are this to me was the saddest chapter I have ever read in ASOIAF.

The scene where she's dining with Brienne and acknowledges her youngest sons are dead left me heartbroken. Catelyn does some very questionable things in this series, many of which I do not agree with. However I couldn't help but put myself in her shoes. She is in her childhood home where her father lays on deaths doorstep. Her eldest son is hundreds of leagues away and seemingly wants nothing to do with her anymore. Her husband was murdered. Her eldest daughter is a known captive of a viscous enemy and her youngest daughter is presumed dead. Theonn Greyjoy (who she urged Robb to keep close) has killed her two youngest sons. Although we as the reader know this not to be the case she absolutely believes it. This is a woman who has lost everything...and feels guilty for it all. The one line that stuck out to me was:

"Bran and Rickon tried to escape, but were taken at a mill on the Acorn Water. Theon Greyjoy has mounted their heads on the walls of Winterfell. Theon Greyjoy, who ate at my table since he was a boy of ten.” I have said it, gods forgive me. I have said it and made it true.

She even punishes herself for acknowledging the truth. This is the moment she truly recognizes her pain and accepts that she is lost. She tries to be strong and doesn't break down and to me that makes it somehow even more sad. Lastly, knowing what her eventual fate will be makes this so much worse. She will die after watching (who she believes to be) her last child die in front of her.

I'm just curious as to your thoughts about this chapter? In the same chapter she makes a miserable mistake by releasing the Kingslayer and i'm curious as to how people think her grief played a role in this. Does she get a pass? Also, what other chapter did you find yourself heartbroken after?

Edited by LHakaLH

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Easy. Arya in the aftermath of the Red Wedding. Where she’s Nymeria and she pulls dead Cat out. When the Hound dies. When she’s in the village and this kids pestering her and she rips up her toy soldier. I think this may have been several chapters but definitely the last part just before she goes off to Braavos. 

 

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Actually, the chapter that always knocks me sideways is the Red Wedding chapter, especially the line "please don't cut my hair, Ned loves my hair."

And although I revile the character, the Walk of Shame stirs up a mixture of emotions in me that make me both saddened at the way Cersei's archvillain status was completely dissolved and also makes me sad that it was done in a such a specific way due to her womanhood.  

 

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Arya watching Ned's beheading always chokes me up. 

The RW is rough also.

All the chapters previously mentioned are sad also. 

A couple more hard reads are the chapter Maester Aemon dies, when Bran & Co find a dying Luwin & a demolished WF, Cressen dying from his own poison - to be clear it wasn't him dying that made me the saddest. It was Mel making him where the fools hat. Knowing this man has served Stannis faithfully for so long only to be treated like dirt ripped my heart out. 

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I won't speak to whole chapters, but the opening of "The Captain of Guards" in A Feast for Crows is so poignant and laden with feeling. Doran just sitting there, the over-ripe oranges falling, a letter delivered and left unopened for hours until night falls, when he finally confirms what he knew it was, that his brother was dead. It's a gorgeous piece of writing.

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Arya when she thinks that she never seems to be able to get to the places she wants to get. Winterfell, Riverrun, Eastwatch, and when the kindly man makes her give up her possessions. I still get choked up reading her thoughts on Needle.

Bran's last chapter in ACoK emerging into a broken Winterfell. Brienne's chapter with the elder brother and how raw and exposed she was.

The Red Wedding chapter. Dany's vision of Willem Darry in the HotU. Doran Martell waiting for the sun to set to read what he already knew was in the letter. 

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Posted (edited)

Retrospectively the ‘The King in the North!’ Ranks up there now, because of what that turned into in the end, a chapter on first read that pumps you up becomes one of inevitable dread on re-reads, it was kinda sad anyway because Eddard was dead and you got the impression that Rob was out of his depth by comparison to his dad, and it proved true (though it has to be said Ned was older than Rob for his first war and was backed up by Jon Arryn and the Vale, Hoster Tully and the Riverlands and the human war machine Robert with the Stormlords) but you hoped it would lead to justice for Ned, instead it led to Greywinds head sewn onto Robbs body and Lady Stoneheart

Edited by FitzChivalry Fartseer

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I agree with mos these chapters/ The Caitlyn one broke my heart, the Doran Martel introducton was also very "heavy".Red wedding is obvious. 

Still another Chapter that breaks me is the Jaimie Chapter when he encounters Blackfish on AFfC. The parallel between his young self and now is heartbreaking and the fact that he is facing his childhood hero as an enemy and his rolemodel dismisses him as Kingslayer and awful man.

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I think maybe the Tyrion chapter around where he learns that he actually had a girl who loved him, but his father cast her aside and humiliated them... followed by his family lying to him for most of his life about it.  It pretty much leaves him with nothing

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For me it's Brienne IV in Feast.

Quote

Podrick helped her lower Nimble Dick into his hole. By the time they were done the moon was rising. Brienne rubbed the dirt from her hands and tossed two dragons down into the grave. “Why did you do that, my lady? Ser?” asked Pod. “It was the reward I promised him for finding me the fool.”

 

 

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When Arya saw Harwin

Quote

Harwin's eyes went from her face to the flayed man on her doublet. "How do you know me?" he said, frowning suspiciously. "The flayed man . . . who are you, some serving boy to Lord Leech?"

For a moment she did not know how to answer. She'd had so many names. Had she only dreamed Arya Stark? "I'm a girl," she sniffed. "I was Lord Bolton's cupbearer but he was going to leave me for the goat, so I ran off with Gendry and Hot Pie. You have to know me! You used to lead my pony, when I was little."

His eyes went wide, "Gods be good," he said in a choked voice. "Arya Underfoot?

Its a short moment of happiness, but still so sad.

That line "Had she only dreamed of Arya Stark?" just breaks me

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On 8/29/2019 at 12:01 PM, LHakaLH said:

I'm just curious as to your thoughts about this chapter? In the same chapter she makes a miserable mistake by releasing the Kingslayer and i'm curious as to how people think her grief played a role in this. Does she get a pass? Also, what other chapter did you find yourself heartbroken after?

Grief can compromise judgment.  But you know, these people of nobility who are born entitled to command should be above that.  They are expected to lead, to rule, to judge, etc.  Jon acted in grief and desperation to save his sister from her marriage to Ramsay.  I find that totally inexcusable.  Taking Jaime from his cell and letting him go is inexcusable.  

On 8/29/2019 at 12:01 PM, LHakaLH said:

Also, what other chapter did you find yourself heartbroken after?

There are a lot of them.  The start of the Battle of Fire is depressing.  Because many of the good guys will die.  

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I'm currently re-reading A Clash of Kings and when Theon captures Winterfell and his men beat up Hodor, it's quite horrible. Hodor is too pure for any fictional world and he doesn't even fully understand what is going on when he is forced to go to the great hall of Winterfell. So reading about him getting beaten bloody is worse than watching kittens burn alive. Just please leave Hodor alone.

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On 29. August 2019 at 6:45 PM, Tyrion1991 said:

Easy. Arya in the aftermath of the Red Wedding. Where she’s Nymeria and she pulls dead Cat out. When the Hound dies. When she’s in the village and this kids pestering her and she rips up her toy soldier. I think this may have been several chapters but definitely the last part just before she goes off to Braavos. 

 

yes, the chapter right after the red wedding:(  when there is this hole inside her, that won't go away.

"She could feel the hole inside her every morning when she woke. It wasn’t hunger, though sometimes there was that too. It was a hollow place, an emptiness where her heart had been, where her brothers had lived, and her parents. Her head hurt too. Not as bad as it had at first, but still pretty bad. Arya was used to that, though, and at least the lump was going down. But the hole inside her stayed the same. The hole will never feel any better, she told herself when she went to sleep."

 

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On 30. August 2019 at 1:26 PM, The Lord of the Crossing said:

I don't care about the Starks.  Their misery doesn't really touch me. 

The saddest to me is the tale Missandei told of the education of the Unsullied.  The murdering of the infants and those poor puppies.  Truly sad. 

yes, found that super sad too

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The chapter where Sansa tells Loras that  Margaery must have been so sad to lose her husband, showing how homophobia doesn't have to be about vulgar threats or violence to have an effect. I felt so sorry for Loras in that chapter.

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I wouldn't say, it's the saddest part of the novels, but the first truly sad moment for me was, when the Hound brought back Mycah's mutilated dead body. It was also a shocking and defining moment, because only at that point did I realise, that the story would be brutal, realistic, and many times unfair.

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A Ghost In Winterfell because of Theon's history of making dumb decisions and him looking back at his failures 

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