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War Won't Save The World

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So, I've asid this many times in this forum, the idea that there'll be a Battle For Dawn in which the Forces Of Good And Light will clash against the Forces Of Evil And Darkness And Eating Babies And Poop Them Out In The Shape Of Swastikas in a glorious and epic battle seems really unlikely to me. Yet, any time I mention it people react to it like I was saying Ned Stark is the secret son of Daenerys Targaryen and Good Queen Alyssane. So with this post I'll attempt to compile all the many reasons why I think humanity won't be saved by the Battle For Dawn, in hopes of discussing it and so I don't have to write it up again every time someone asks me about it, maybe I won't convince anyone, but at the very least I want for people to see that there are reasons for my thinking.

So, let's dive in.

 

 

1. War Bad

One of the many points this story keeps hammering down is how awful, destructive, violent not glorious and even evil war is. Hundreds of people died, the survivors get physicals and emotional scars, broken men are born, those not involved get robbed, killed or raped anyway, cities are burnt, food goes to waste and famine and desease spread wherever war goes. This is driven home many times, Arya's whole story in ACOK and ASOS is her traveling and either witnessing or suffering the consequences of war, and the same get's repeated later in Brianne's chapters. We see how the Riverlands' smallfolk don't think of the Northerners as better than the Westerners as they also abuse their land and kill the smallfolk. And in many scenes of battle the notion that battle is glorious is undercut. Characters piss or shit their pants, they cry, they scream and they insult like they're in a barbarian rage. So yeah, Martin suddenly deciding to go back on all of this and having humanity be saved by an epic war seems like a weird notion.

 

 

2. Othering Also Bad

Othering is an anthropological concept that deals with turning an individual or a group of individuals into 'others' that is, choosing an aspect of them that separates them from us and discriminate them because of it. The 'other' is often feared, hated and ridiculed. The Other is often blamed for society's problems. IMNSHO the Others have this name for this very reason, George is talking about discrimination with just a simple name. I mean, I really doubt he named them such without thinking of the implications of it. I read many of George's other stories, tho I have many to go, in none of them have I found a race of genetically evil beings, that doesn't seem like GRRM to me.

But othering being 'bad' is also part of the story:

 

Quote

"So they do, but every northerner is worth ten of these southron swords, so you can sleep easy."

He said, before he and all his brothers in arms were killed in a fight in which a single Lannister man died.

 

Tywin also 'others' the Northerners, thinking he can easily beat them, and he gets his ass handed to him. 

 

But my favorite example is Ned. Ned 'others' the Lannisters, he views them as less moral, less honorable. This makes him believe anything Littlefinger says to him, which ends up facilitating the war. So the war was in a big part caused by othering and discrimination. Can we think of another war in the story influenced by such things?

 

And the example that proves my point the most is Melissandre. Red Raloo's enemy is the Great Other, and Mel goes as far as saying that all the other gods are servants of the Great Other, and every worshiper of the other gods is a servant of the Great Other. She uses this reasoning to burn people alive. Mel, quite literally, others anyone who doesn't worship R'hlor, then she burns them. 

 

The others killed a few black brothers, that's true, but only using that as evidence, and the ancient stories (*cough* racist propaganda *cough*) the Watch concludes that the others are all evil and they desire to cross the Wall and kill everyone. This causes the Watch to prepare for a war against them, even making common cause with their ancient enemy, the Freefolk, not that this is bad, letting the Freefolk cross is undeniably the right thing to do, but the Watch seems convinced they are fighting the ultimate evil based on actions that could've been easily taken by the Freefolk or any other human group, and the readers seem convinced the Others are the ultimate evil but we see a lot of humans do far worse things, like Ramsay and the slavers.

 

If the Others aren't biologically evil, which I'm willing to bet they aren't, then bringing their extinction would be completely wrong and evil, and I doubt George would portray genocide as a positive thing. But for war to be the answer, there must be a complete extermination, or else, in a couple thousand years, the conflict will start again and the whole series will be pointless.

 

 

3. Signs And Portents

Val and Dalla say that Sorcery is like a sword without a hilt, which gets repeated four times in two books. Marwyn says that prophecy is like a treacherous woman. And George in general has written about prophecy being unreliable and fickle, and even sometimes, a tool for the manipulation of men. For example, in And Seven Times Never Kill Men, a race of woodland telepathic creatures send visions to men convincing them to starve themselves and kill their children. George also spent most of his career portraying religious extremism as wrong. Considering that, and what we already covered about war, I really mistrust the Azor Ahai prophecy, it seems like it was made to drive war. After all, if the Gods tell you that humanity will be saved by murder, you won't look for another explanation. If war, prophecy and religious extremism are 'evil', then I won't put much stock in a prophesy that says war will save humanity and is paddled by zealots so disgusting they burn people alive.

 

Also, Meera says:

Quote

"Why would the gods send a warning if we can't heed it and change what's to come?"

The question of who sends the visions and with what purpose has been asked in the narrative, in fact, we have many characters who are able to send prophecies. So we must ask who is the one sending each vision and what do they hope to gain by doing it.

 

 

4. Jon's Arc

Jon's story is about him learning to empathize and work with people he used to consider his enemies. In other words, his story is about learning to un-other.

He first mistrust Tyrion Lannister, he likely gets some of this from Ned, he was in a way, raised to mistrust Lannisters, but over the time he learns to get along with him and even like him.

He then views his fellow recruits as untalented, he dislikes them and he thinks of himself as superior to them, like any noble son would, they are commoners, smallfolk, he is also raised to think this way, but Donal Noye tells him to check his privilege and Jon learns to accept his soon to be brothers and become friends with them. 

Then Jon is prejudiced against the Freefolk. They are strange people, with weird, savage seeming customs, who are derogatorily called 'wild'. As a boy of the Seven Kingdoms he was also raised to fear and hate them. He was told stories of how they rape, murder and kidnap, and he then entered an organization with the goal of stopping them. Somehow he is able to push through all of this and learns to accept them and even like them. He even uses his new worldview and position of power to help them.

So what's next? The other group he was raised to fear and hate are the Others. If Jon's arc follows this path, it seems like he should be learning to empathize with the Others, realize that they aren't all evil, and maybe try to cut a deal.

 

 

5. Deconstruction And Subversion Of Expectations

This is a minor point, and one made by many crackpot theories in order to sound more legitimate, but George does love to deconstruct genre tropes, and he does love to subvert expectations.

The all evil race and the light vs darkness battle that saved humanity are HUGE tropes of fantasy, and George, being a huge anti-war hippie, should be very interested in deconstructing those, in fact, he already did. In The Armageddon Rag (his best work in my opinion, and a book I will NEVER shut up about) the following happens:

 

Quote

"The final confrontation between good an evil, that's what armageddon is supposed to be, which side are we?"

"That one you've got to figure out by yourself, this ain't like in Tolkien, is it"

 

In TAM the apocalypse wasn't 'like in Tolkien' it was a complex issue with many shades of grey in it and in the end, anyone wanting it to be a war was portrayed as the villain.

 

And on subversion of expectation, many seem to think that it applies to subtext, for example, Jon's story is leading towards a confrontation with the Others, so a good subversion would be him hiding behind a Rock Of Fire Immunity while his little sister does all the work for him. Well no, that's just bad writing. Subversion, and specifically the type George most uses is, establishing the expectation first and then changing it. Ned was going to be sent to the Wall, but oh no, subversion of expectations, Robb was going to take Moat Cailin, but oh no, Red Wedding, this happens over and over throughout the story (and it's the main reason why I don't think Dany will be Queen) and the biggest expectation of all is the Battle For Dawn, the huge war to save humanity at the end of the story. So I thank that, George being the hippie he is, and so interested in deconstructing tropes and subverting expectations, and he actively trying to surprise us at every turn, he will rather reject the notion of a humanity saving war than give the expected and boring resolution most people think will happen.

 

6. A Really Boring and Anti-Climactic Plot

Besides being the expected outcome, and therefore predictable, like I explained before, a Battle For Dawn would be boring for other reasons. I assume we all like the complexities of this series. How we want Stannis to take KL and save Sansa, but we also want Tyrion's plans for the defense of the city, we see the fight from every side and understand their motives. Going from that to a war in which we only see the perspective of one side, a war with no moral complexity in which there are clear good guys fighting monsters, seems boring to me. Really boring, and completely un-GRRM.

Also, that war would either need to be a really short one, and therefore would feel really disappointing, or it'll need to be as long as the WOT5K, which would turn it into a slog, as, again, it would just be a lesser version of it.

 

 

7. Frost And Fire

Most of us know that ASOIAF was partially named after Robert Frost's poem Ice And Fire. That poem is an anti-war poem that poses two oposite ways in which the world could end: ice and fire, while ignoring the obvious third way, war. So making a reference to that poem in a series that ends with war and fire saving humanity from ice sounds really weird, weirder still given how big of a Robert Frost fan GRRM actually is. But there's more. Robert Frost has another poem called 'The Mending Wall' in which he argues walls bring more harm than good to society. And Ygritte agrees, she hates the Wall, and she's not the only one, as the Freefolk have songs about how sad the building of the Wall is. And yes, the Wall separates men and lets the Freefolk on their own to die, but it also separates men from the Others, and that's good... isn't it?

 

 

8. In The House Of The Worm

In The House Of The Worm is a great shortish story by GRRM that I recommend to read and that I'm going to spoil right now.

It depicts a post apocalyptic future in which, after a nuclear war humanity hides in bunkers under the earth, but now, ages later, their sun is going out, and they need to find another way to survive. They must also fight the giant man eating worms that lurk underground, and humanity is under constant war with the Grouns, a group of sentient beings whom they hunt and even eat. Except that by story's end the protagonist survives a giant worm attack with the help of a Groun, he's taken to their city and helped, and he realizes that the Grouns are just a differently evolved group of humans that can see in the dark and are able to go further down underground. He realices humanity shouldn't be fighting the Grouns, they should be allies, mating together in order to journey deeper underground and survive the Sun going out. Make love not war.

This story has many similarities to ASOIAF, I think it's obvious, and it definitely highlights George's writing sensibilities. If ITHOTW the solution wasn't war, why would it be in ASOIAF?

 

 

9. Endgame

This is not to say I expect ASOIAF to end with humans and others hugging and singing Kumbaya, in here I argued that it could end with a marriage pact, it can also end with a different peace pact, dividing lands between both sides maybe, it could end with humans and others realizing they are being manipulated into war by another group, like many of Martin's stories do. Or it could end like ITHOTW does, with war, just that we don't get to see that war, we just see people getting ready for it, while our POV, likely Jon, laments how it will bring the end of the world.

 

Thanks for reading!

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Posted (edited)

Very good post!:cheers:
But I also wanted to add a few of my toughts.IMO,The Others just need a pretty good reason to go to war with humans and to hate them (remember the ice also represents hate) and I think it's possible that we find out that they are former CotF.I mean they have a good damn reason to want to erase humanity : they took and destroy everything they had.Humans destroy nature,they cut down trees to make they stone castles and there are also mythical creatures that disappeared once men arrived if I recall right (or they are almost extinct,like giants).I also wanted to point out that even if "In the House of the Worm" ends with the realisation that both sides should be allies,not enemies,GRRM does not like to write the same story twice.Also,I wanted to remind that Martin does consider some wars justified.That being said,I also wondered if it will eventually end with a pact or sacrifice.

Edited by Dracul's Daughter

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Posted (edited)

I would add that war wasn't how men ended the Long Night in the first time around:

"So as cold and death filled the earth, the last hero determined to seek out the children, in the hopes that their ancient magics could win back what the armies of men had lost. He set out into the dead lands with a sword, a horse, a dog, and a dozen companions."

The Last Hero set out after the armies of men failed. He learned the language of the Singers and forged a peace.

Edited by Mourning Star

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9 minutes ago, Dracul's Daughter said:

Very good post!:cheers:

Thanks!

 

Quote

But I also wanted to add a few of my toughts.IMO,The Others just need a pretty good reason to go to war with humans and to hate them (remember the ice also represents hate) and I think it's possible that we find out that they are former CotF.I mean they have a good damn reason to want to erase humanity : they took and destroy everything they had.Humans destroy nature,they cut down trees to make they stone castles and there are also mythical creatures that disappeared once men arrived if I recall right (or they are almost extinct,like giants).I also wanted to point out that even if "In the House of the Worm" ends with the realisation that both sides should be allies,not enemies,GRRM does not like to write the same story twice.Also,I wanted to remind that Martin does consider some wars justified.That being said,I also wondered if it will eventually end with a pact or sacrifice.

Yes, my thinking is that the COTF are driving the Others and Humans into war to get rid of both and live happily ever after in Westeros. But yeah, after millenia of waring the Others have many reasons for wanting to kill humanity.

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4 minutes ago, Mourning Star said:

I would add that war wasn't how men ended the Long Night in the first time around:

"So as cold and death filled the earth, the last hero determined to seek out the children, in the hopes that their ancient magics could win back what the armies of men had lost. He set out into the dead lands with a sword, a horse, a dog, and a dozen companions."

The Last Hero set out after the armies of men failed. He learned the language of the Singers and forged a peace.

Great addition!!

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1 minute ago, Mourning Star said:

I would add that war wasn't how men ended the Long Night in the first time around:

"So as cold and death filled the earth, the last hero determined to seek out the children, in the hopes that their ancient magics could win back what the armies of men had lost. He set out into the dead lands with a sword, a horse, a dog, and a dozen companions."

The Last Hero set out after the armies of men failed. He learned the language of the Singers and forged a peace.

This is what makes me believe that The Others can't be defeated.What I wonder is what made them come back.What kind of pact was made,or what kind of magic was used in the first Long Night??

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Posted (edited)

Also, you reference the Frost poem, Fire and Ice, which in turn is also a reference to Dante's Divine Comedy.

Another Frost poem, The Road Not Taken, is also a famous reference to the opening of Dante's Inferno: "In the middle of the journey of our life, I came to myself, in a dark wood, where the direct way was lost. It is a hard thing to speak of, how wild, harsh and impenetrable that wood was, so that thinking of it recreates the fear. It is scarcely less bitter than death: but, in order to tell of the good that I found there, I must tell of the other things I saw there."

It cannot be overly stressed how the prologue of Game of Thrones is a reference to this as well, with the brothers in the middle of a dark wood where the easy way was lost and coming face to face with "death".

It would not be surprising to see the ending reference Dante as well.

Here force failed my high fantasy; but my
desire and will were moved already—like
a wheel revolving uniformly—by

the Love that moves the sun and the other stars.

Edited by Mourning Star

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4 minutes ago, Dracul's Daughter said:

This is what makes me believe that The Others can't be defeated.What I wonder is what made them come back.What kind of pact was made,or what kind of magic was used in the first Long Night??

If you are asking me, I would bet that Bloodraven is responsible for the return of the Others.

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Just now, Mourning Star said:

If you are asking me, I would bet that Bloodraven is responsible for the return of the Others.

:o
How so??You made me curious.:D

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3 minutes ago, Mourning Star said:

Also, you reference the Frost poem, Fire and Ice, which in turn is also a reference to Dante's Divine Comedy.

Another Frost poem, The Road Not Taken, is also a famous reference to the opening of Dante's Inferno: "In the middle of the journey of our life, I came to myself, in a dark wood, where the direct way was lost. It is a hard thing to speak of, how wild, harsh and impenetrable that wood was, so that thinking of it recreates the fear. It is scarcely less bitter than death: but, in order to tell of the good that I found there, I must tell of the other things I saw there."

It cannot be overly stressed how the prologue of Game of Thrones is a reference to this as well, with the Brother in the middle of a dark wood where the easy way was lost and coming face to face with "death".

It would not be surprising to see the ending reference Dante as well.

Here force failed my high fantasy; but my
desire and will were moved already—like
a wheel revolving uniformly—by

the Love that moves the sun and the other stars.

Yes! and IIRC George published a short story titled The Road Less Traveled.

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2 minutes ago, Mourning Star said:

If you are asking me, I would bet that Bloodraven is responsible for the return of the Others.

Ohh please elaborate!

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Posted (edited)
26 minutes ago, Dracul's Daughter said:

:o
How so??You made me curious.:D

I hate to derail this thread... but since you asked!

In short (lol in retrospect), Bloodraven is not the three eyed crow from Bran's dream, but the Brooding Weirwood.

Quote

At the heart of the godswood, the great white weirwood brooded over its reflection in the black pool, its leaves rustling in a chill wind. When it felt Bran watching, it lifted its eyes from the still waters and stared back at him knowingly.

He is training Bran not to save the world, but so he can take his body. We learned in the Varamyr chapters that magic (like the ability to Warg or Skinshift) is tied to the body, so he loses it when he bodysnatches someone without powers of their own. 

Quote

"A … crow?" The pale lord's voice was dry. His lips moved slowly, as if they had forgotten how to form words. "Once, aye. Black of garb and black of blood." The clothes he wore were rotten and faded, spotted with moss and eaten through with worms, but once they had been black. "I have been many things, Bran. Now I am as you see me, and now you will understand why I could not come to you … except in dreams. I have watched you for a long time, watched you with a thousand eyes and one. I saw your birth, and that of your lord father before you. I saw your first step, heard your first word, was part of your first dream. I was watching when you fell. And now you are come to me at last, Brandon Stark, though the hour is late."

Bloodraven doesn't even know what Bran is talking about when he mentions the three eyed crow, and thinks he is talking about the night's watch, which makes no sense since the crow and bran talk about it having wings in the falling dream.

The hour is late for Bloodraven. He wants a new powerful body... Bran's.

Going back to Bran's falling dream, he even see's Bloodraven's lair as the Heart of Winter:

Quote

Because winter is coming.
Bran looked at the crow on his shoulder, and the crow looked back. It had three eyes, and the third eye was full of a terrible knowledge. Bran looked down. There was nothing below him now but snow and cold and death, a frozen wasteland where jagged blue-white spires of ice waited to embrace him. They flew up at him like spears. He saw the bones of a thousand other dreamers impaled upon their points. He was desperately afraid.
"Can a man still be brave if he's afraid?" he heard his own voice saying, small and far away.

The jagged blue white spires are the frozen weirwoods on the hill beneath which Bloodraven sits:

Quote

Something about the way the raven screamed sent a shiver running up Bran's spine. I am almost a man grown, he had to remind himself. I have to be brave now.
But the air was sharp and cold and full of fear. Even Summer was afraid. The fur on his neck was bristling. Shadows stretched against the hillside, black and hungry. All the trees were bowed and twisted by the weight of ice they carried. Some hardly looked like trees at all. Buried from root to crown in frozen snow, they huddled on the hill like giants, monstrous and misshapen creatures hunched against the icy wind.

You will notice the reference to Ned's "you can only be brave when you are afraid" from Bran's first chapter and both the falling dream and his seeing the frozen trees. I will come back to this in a moment.

Meanwhile there are literally thousands of bones of dreamers impaled on the points of the trees... impaled on the roots.

Quote

"Bones," said Bran. "It's bones." The floor of the passage was littered with the bones of birds and beasts. But there were other bones as well, big ones that must have come from giants and small ones that could have been from children. On either side of them, in niches carved from the stone, skulls looked down on them. Bran saw a bear skull and a wolf skull, half a dozen human skulls and near as many giants. All the rest were small, queerly formed. Children of the forest. The roots had grown in and around and through them, every one. A few had ravens perched atop them, watching them pass with bright black eyes.

You will note the cave is full of ravens, not crows. I think the distinction is important, as I mentioned, Bloodraven is not the three eyed crow.

Bloodraven spent 13 years as lord commander before abandoning his post.

He broke just about every rule the old gods have. Kinslaying, oathbreaking, violating guest right, incest, etc.

Maybe even more damning he gives Bran opposite advice from what Ned and Nan had raised him to believe.

Quote

There he sat, listening to the hoarse whispers of his teacher. "Never fear the darkness, Bran." The lord's words were accompanied by a faint rustling of wood and leaf, a slight twisting of his head. "The strongest trees are rooted in the dark places of the earth. Darkness will be your cloak, your shield, your mother's milk. Darkness will make you strong."

The very first lesson we are told is that it is ok to be afraid.

And Nan has words of wisdom in this regard as well:

Quote

As the sun began to set the shadows of the towers lengthened and the wind blew harder, sending gusts of dry dead leaves rattling through the yards. The gathering gloom put Bran in mind of another of Old Nan's stories, the tale of Night's King. He had been the thirteenth man to lead the Night's Watch, she said; a warrior who knew no fear. "And that was the fault in him," she would add, "for all men must know fear." A woman was his downfall; a woman glimpsed from atop the Wall, with skin as white as the moon and eyes like blue stars. Fearing nothing, he chased her and caught her and loved her, though her skin was cold as ice, and when he gave his seed to her he gave his soul as well.
He brought her back to the Nightfort and proclaimed her a queen and himself her king, and with strange sorceries he bound his Sworn Brothers to his will. For thirteen years they had ruled, Night's King and his corpse queen, till finally the Stark of Winterfell and Joramun of the wildlings had joined to free the Watch from bondage. After his fall, when it was found he had been sacrificing to the Others, all records of Night's King had been destroyed, his very name forbidden.

It is a huge red flag that Bloodraven seems to advise not knowing fear.

Because if ever there was a time for fear, this seems to be it:

Quote

"Oh, my sweet summer child," Old Nan said quietly, "what do you know of fear? Fear is for the winter, my little lord, when the snows fall a hundred feet deep and the ice wind comes howling out of the north. Fear is for the long night, when the sun hides its face for years at a time, and little children are born and live and die all in darkness while the direwolves grow gaunt and hungry, and the white walkers move through the woods."

Fear is for the darkness.

And Bran should fear Bloodraven, as perhaps should the realms of man.

My guess is that Bloodraven is pissed that he believes he gave everything he had in life for the sake of a kingdom which seems to despise him, the bastard sorcerer, and maybe even as a legitimized son of the dragon he seems himself as the rightful lord of the seven kingdoms.

Edited by Mourning Star

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Posted (edited)
9 minutes ago, Mourning Star said:

I hate to derail this thread... but since you asked!

But in short Bloodraven is not the three eyed crow from Bran's dream, but the Brooding Weirwood.

He is training Bran not to save the world, but so he can take his body. We learned in the Varamyr chapters that magic (like the ability to Warg or Skinshift) is tied to the body, so he loses it when he bodysnatches someone without powers of their own. 

Bloodraven doesn't even know what Bran is talking about when he mentions the three eyed crow, and thinks he is talking about the night's watch, which makes no sense since the crow and bran talk about it having wings in the falling dream.

The hour is late for Bloodraven. He wants a new powerful body... Bran's.

Going back to Bran's falling dream, he even see's Bloodraven's lair as the Heart of Winter:

The jagged blue white spires are the frozen weirwoods on the hill beneath which Bloodraven sits:

You will notice the reference to Ned's "you can only be brave when you are afraid" from Bran's first chapter and both the falling dream and his seeing the frozen trees. I will come back to this in a moment.

Meanwhile there are literally thousands of bones of dreamers impaled on the points of the trees... impaled on the roots.

You will note the cave is full of ravens, not crows. I think the distinction is important, as I mentioned, Bloodraven is not the three eyed crow.

Bloodraven spent 13 years as lord commander before abandoning his post.

He broke just about every rule the old gods have. Kinslaying, oathbreaking, violating guest right, incest, etc.

Maybe even more damning he gives Bran opposite advice from what Ned and Nan had raised him to believe.

The very first lesson we are told is that it is ok to be afraid.

And Nan has words of wisdom in this regard as well:

It is a huge red flag that Bloodraven seems to advise not knowing fear.

Because if ever there was a time for fear, this seems to be it:

Fear is for the darkness.

And Bran should fear Bloodraven, as perhaps should the realms of man.

My guess is that Bloodraven is pissed that he believes he gave everything he had in life for the sake of a kingdom which seems to despise him, the bastard sorcerer, and maybe even as a legitimized son of the dragon he seems himself as the rightful lord of the seven kingdoms.

Very interesting indeed.:D:cheers:
I also heared the theory that Bloodraven might trick Bran and the Old Nan's saying "All crows are liars" also makes you wonder.

Edited by Dracul's Daughter

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10 minutes ago, Mourning Star said:
Quote

Because winter is coming.
Bran looked at the crow on his shoulder, and the crow looked back. It had three eyes, and the third eye was full of a terrible knowledge. Bran looked down. There was nothing below him now but snow and cold and death, a frozen wasteland where jagged blue-white spires of ice waited to embrace him. They flew up at him like spears. He saw the bones of a thousand other dreamers impaled upon their points. He was desperately afraid.
"Can a man still be brave if he's afraid?" he heard his own voice saying, small and far away.

The jagged blue white spires are the frozen weirwoods on the hill beneath which Bloodraven sits:

I always tought they were where the Heart of Winter is.I hope we get to see that place.

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Posted (edited)
9 minutes ago, Dracul's Daughter said:

Very interesting indeed.:D:cheers:
I also heared the theory that Bloodraven might trick Bran and the Old Nan's saying "All crows are liars" also makes you wander.

I would suggest that she says this because Nan is the three eyed crow.

Quote

She should never have talked about the wolf dreams, Bran thought as Hodor carried him up the steps to his bedchamber. He fought against sleep as long as he could, but in the end it took him as it always did. On this night he dreamed of the weirwood. It was looking at him with its deep red eyes, calling to him with its twisted wooden mouth, and from its pale branches the three-eyed crow came flapping, pecking at his face and crying his name in a voice as sharp as swords.

You will notice that Bran explicitly has dreams of the Weirwood and of the crow and they are distinct.

Quote

Jojen sat on Bran's bed. "Tell me what you dream."
He was scared, even then, but he had sworn to trust them, and a Stark of Winterfell keeps his sworn word. "There's different kinds," he said slowly. "There's the wolf dreams, those aren't so bad as the others. I run and hunt and kill squirrels. And there's dreams where the crow comes and tells me to fly. Sometimes the tree is in those dreams too, calling my name. That frightens me. But the worst dreams are when I fall." He looked down into the yard, feeling miserable. "I never used to fall before. When I climbed. I went everyplace, up on the roofs and along the walls, I used to feed the crows in the Burned Tower. Mother was afraid that I would fall but I knew I never would. Only I did, and now when I sleep I fall all the time."

And it's clear the crow and weirwood don't always appear together, they are different entities.

And the three eyed crow speaks in a voice as sharp as swords:

Quote

Old Nan nodded. "In that darkness, the Others came for the first time," she said as her needles went click click click. "They were cold things, dead things, that hated iron and fire and the touch of the sun, and every creature with hot blood in its veins. They swept over holdfasts and cities and kingdoms, felled heroes and armies by the score, riding their pale dead horses and leading hosts of the slain. All the swords of men could not stay their advance, and even maidens and suckling babes found no pity in them. They hunted the maids through frozen forests, and fed their dead servants on the flesh of human children."

Needles are as sharp as swords! (they even have an extra "eye")

We never get Nan's eye or hair color for a reason, the same reason she never calls Bran a "prince", and the same reason she knows the comet means dragons, she is a Targaryen.

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Though Old Nan did not think so, and she'd lived longer than any of them. "Dragons," she said, lifting her head and sniffing. She was near blind and could not see the comet, yet she claimed she could smell it. "It be dragons, boy," she insisted. Bran got no princes from Nan, no more than he ever had.

 

Edited by Mourning Star

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2 minutes ago, Mourning Star said:

I would suggest that she says this because Nan is the three eyed crow.

You will notice that Bran explicitly has dreams of the Weirwood and of the crow and they are distinct.

And it's clear the crow and weirwood don't always appear together, they are different entities.

And the three eyed crow speaks in a voice as sharp as swords:

Needles are as sharp as swords!

Interesting,It never ocurred to me that theory and I never heard it before.Can't wait to find out more about Bran's play in the story.

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George doesn't condemn all war.  GRRM is not a complete pacifist.  Daenerys Targaryen's war against slavery qualifies as justified and necessary.  

Unification is important because Westeros will need help from overseas if it has any chance of surviving through a long winter.  Living underground is not a good alternative.  A few may scrape out a meager living by eating fungus.  I suppose that can happen.  But the real answer is to migrate to Essos and leave Westeros.  

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It's been a long time since I read it but I think that Cantuse posited that Lightbringer is in fact a silver harp (I think he posited that Dragon Steel was actually silver not V steel too) and music was the common language used to communicate with the Others.  I think there's some issues there, but the basic premise that a means of communication rather than a sword was instrumental to peace makes a lot of sense.

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Posted (edited)
3 hours ago, CamiloRP said:

 It could end with humans and others realizing they are being manipulated into war by another group

Im thinking the Iron Bank.

Ive only read the main novels but from reading the wiki it looks like in other material the IB is shown more actually doing some of the shady banking practices weve seen in the real world. instead of being merely hinted at. 

I would guess that Stannis is not the only faction of the war that was supported by the Iron Bank. 

After Cersei refuses to pay them Im guessing thats when they started plotting to remove her. They could be lending gold to every remaining faction other than Cersei who knows.

LF could be an agent of the IB since he has familial ties to Braavos. And he did have a hand in starting the war

Edited by Ephraim'sFruit

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3 hours ago, Bowen Marsh said:

George doesn't condemn all war.  GRRM is not a complete pacifist.  Daenerys Targaryen's war against slavery qualifies as justified and necessary.  

Yes, I agree, he also said that Robert's Rebellion was justified. But one thing is seeing a specific war as a necessary evil and another is making a cliche 'glorious war to save humanity' the point of your series. He hasn't done that yet. And for it to be justified we would need to know what the Others want, and it has to be terrible, but all we know about them are thousand year old horror stories written by Westerosi.

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