Jump to content
Black Crow

Heresy 235 The Winter Snow

Recommended Posts

Welcome to Heresy 235, the latest episode of the long-running thread taking a slantwise look at the Song of Ice and Fire.

As threatened, this time around I’d like to take a look at Jon Snow and the R+L=J theory. Fear not, this isn’t going to be a rehash of the old [very old] arguments anent Jon’s parentage. Instead, we’ll suspend those arguments for now and for the purposes of this particular discussion proceed on the basis that its actually true. [!]

What GRRM has written and is still writing is not of course what the Mummers presented. It’s been made very clear all the way through that they are two very different stories, even allowing for ordinary dramatic adaptation for the screen. Nevertheless, deeply flawed as it is, that adaptation may offer some important clues anent GRRM’s own aspirations.

As we know, not so many years ago, on realising that their version was going to outstrip the book big time, the Mummers, not unreasonably, sat down with GRRM in Santa Fe and demanded answers as to how the story arcs of the principal characters would end.

In simple terms they learned from him who would be the last man standing, but little or nothing beyond that and so had to make the rest up by themselves. Surprisingly, despite their trailing of R+L=J from the very beginning and despite the fervid anticipation of the faithful, in Mummers’ eventual version Jon failed to ascend the Iron Throne, presumably because GRRM insisted he would not.

So, if Jon Snow’s story arc is not intended to culminate in a Return of the [Targaryen] King moment, and nor is he going to save the day as Azor Ahai come again, then what might be the significance of a plot device casting him as the son of Rhaegar Targaryen ?

In other words is Jon Snow’s supposed Targaryen parentage important in itself [and why] or is the irony sufficient?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

There are 2 very obvious ways that jon being rhaegar's son can be important.

First is because someone with mixed blood from the starks and targs is needed to do something during the long night in order to defeat the others for good. Because during the first long night there should be more greenseers, dragons, children of the forest and people with magical abilities. Therefore how are the people in the present suposed to win  the defeat the others? Jon snow might be one of the few things that are around this time and weren t present in the past.

Second is that if the north secedes the seven kingdoms then jon being the king in the north could avoid a war with the south because faegon or danny or bran or whoever would be less inclined to fight some family member with possibly the strongest claim to the IT than some random dude that calimed he was KitN.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If he is Rhaegar's son he would be a dragon(seed) growing by feeding from a "chink in a wall of ice". I like the idea of Snow causing the fall of The Wall.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Not sure if it plays out like this, but in my opinion it would be a bold and important statement if Jon were the son of Rhaegar and Lyanna, only to never know this, get murdered by his "brothers" in the nightwatch, and stay dead.

As a reminder that your parentage does not protect you if you take wrong decosions.

Apart from this, you probably know that I am against Rhaegar and Lyanna = Jon Snow as it is much too cliche and Lyanna dying in the Tower of Joy with baby Jon by her side doesn't make sense (if Ned were to tear down the ToJ and build cairns before riding for Starfall, baby Jon would have starved. Additionally, I find the image of Ned and Howland riding into Starfall with a screaming, nearly starving baby Jon, a decomposing corpse of Lyanna, and Dawn, hilarious).

If this weren't written before the tv show I would have guessed it had been a suggestion by DnD.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
12 hours ago, alienarea said:

Not sure if it plays out like this, but in my opinion it would be a bold and important statement if Jon were the son of Rhaegar and Lyanna, only to never know this, get murdered by his "brothers" in the nightwatch, and stay dead.

As a reminder that your parentage does not protect you if you take wrong decisions.

This is very close to my own view; that Rhaegar was obsessed with the prophecy and screwed up big time by trying to actively make it happen. On the one hand he brought about a war which destroyed the house of the three-headed dragon, while on the other, his son was hidden and protected by Eddard Stark, and as a consequence is being drawn to Winterfell and Winter rather that the prophesied dragons

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
15 hours ago, divica said:

There are 2 very obvious ways that jon being rhaegar's son can be important.

First is because someone with mixed blood from the starks and targs is needed to do something during the long night in order to defeat the others for good. Because during the first long night there should be more greenseers, dragons, children of the forest and people with magical abilities. Therefore how are the people in the present suposed to win  the defeat the others? Jon snow might be one of the few things that are around this time and weren t present in the past.

Second is that if the north secedes the seven kingdoms then jon being the king in the north could avoid a war with the south because faegon or danny or bran or whoever would be less inclined to fight some family member with possibly the strongest claim to the IT than some random dude that calimed he was KitN.

Parris once remarked anent this question that "George doesn't do the obvious"

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
14 hours ago, Tucu said:

 I like the idea of Snow causing the fall of The Wall.

So do I, although I don't think Targaryen blood is necessary, Queen Whatzerface and her dragon were defeated by it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)
2 hours ago, Black Crow said:

So do I, although I don't think Targaryen blood is necessary, Queen Whatzerface and her dragon were defeated by it.

Maybe not on its own, but it was good old Whatzerface's meddling that started the bloodline alchemy that maybe brought us Jon Snow. Through a series of unlikely marriages and untimely deaths the current Targs are a chimera not the pure bloods they pretend to be. They have collected Arryn, Rogare, Martell, Dayne and Blackwood blood. Lyanna's side would add northern and Royce bloodlines to the chimera. The vigor of the hybrid.

Edited by Tucu

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)
22 hours ago, Black Crow said:

So, if Jon Snow’s story arc is not intended to culminate in a Return of the [Targaryen] King moment, and nor is he going to save the day as Azor Ahai come again, then what might be the significance of a plot device casting him as the son of Rhaegar Targaryen ?

While I doubt that Jon will ever be king, I don't know that I agree with the bolded speculation--he might not "save the day" (at least not alone), but I still believe Jon is the second most fitting AA/TPWP (assuming they're the same figure) candidate behind Dany.

That said, if we're trying to find a potential consequence for Jon's parentage, and it isn't him becoming king or inheriting some sort of magical advantage (or curse), then I suppose we're left with interpersonal consequences--which is not that far removed from the route the show went.

For the moment, I'll leave aside any questions about whether or not Dany and the North will eventually form an alliance, and instead observe that, if RLJ were true, and it somehow became public knowledge and was perceived as credible, then Dany is likely to react poorly.

The hypothetical context here is that Dany has arrived in Westeros, only to find she's already beaten to the punch by Young Griff. Furthermore, if she's landing with dragons, Dothraki, Unsullied, Tyrion, and perhaps the Iron Born, she's unlikely to find any popular support among either the nobles or the smallfolk.

If that were the case, and she had to go to all the trouble of overcoming one Targaryen candidate, only for there to potentially be another one (regardless of whether the other one wants the IT), that might be enough to push her into going all Fire and Blood on Westeros, and anyone that won't accept her rule.

Edited by Matthew.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
15 hours ago, Matthew. said:

If that were the case, and she had to go to all the trouble of overcoming one Targaryen candidate, only for there to potentially be another one (regardless of whether the other one wants the IT), that might be enough to push her into going all Fire and Blood on Westeros, and anyone that won't accept her rule.

Yes, that's a very big issue. Sticking with what's actually been written we currently have a possible three candidates. Young Griff has actually landed and raised his banners. The different timelines may not yet be in synch. but we can be reasonably sure that Danerys the Dragonlord will arrive in Westeros in the midst or the aftermath of a nasty civil war, and then there's Jon. If he really is the son of Rhaegar, then the situation will become far worse.

Whether or not he declares his candidacy, he's a threat that Danaerys cannot ignore. It's not simply a matter of what he may or may not want to do, but also of what others may do in his name.

However, what's also being forgotten is that Jon is dead. It seems of course that once again death isn't what it used to be in these here parts and there's a fair degree of confidence that he'll be up and about sooner or later, but we can also be confident on basis of what GRRM has already written that death has consequences, that he'll come back different and may well come back wrong. Just how different and how wrong we have yet to see, obviously, but I feel that the "son of Rhaegar Targaryen" trope is intended as a smokescreen, to obscure the importance of his being the son of Lyanna Stark and a son of Winterfell with all its connections to Winter

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
30 minutes ago, Black Crow said:

Just how different and how wrong we have yet to see, obviously, but I feel that the "son of Rhaegar Targaryen" trope is intended as a smokescreen, to obscure the importance of his being the son of Lyanna Stark and a son of Winterfell with all its connections to Winter

There is also the odd business of House Reeds oath to Bran:  "We swear it by ice and fire."  What is the context or meaning, I don't know. Why?

It must have something to do with what Rhaegar refers to as the song of ice and fire.  But why are the Reeds pledged to it and is this something the Starks are also pledged to uphold and have forgotten?

So I wonder if Jon is chosen by both the old powers of Dany's vision and if Jon has to drink from the cup of ice and the cup of fire.

If there is a symmetry or balance to ice and fire, then I think the other promised prince is actually Bran, rather than Jon.  To me, Jon is an instrument of ice and fire.  The COTF have been waiting for Bran for 200 years according to Leaf.  Sounds like he has been promised to them for a long time. 

Could it be that Rhaegar confused the prophesy of a promised prince with Lyannas' offspring when it should have been Ned and Jon is not TPWIP, but something else entirely.  Because we are talking about balance and symmetry, Rhaegar believes he will produce the princes for both ice and fire, since he also insists that Aegon is the PWIP.  So, I don't think it's a question of only one prince.

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Purely in terms of the Iron Throne; three "Targaryen" candidates will strengthen the Lannister position immensely, not only in splitting the vote in itself, but in representing a degree of continuity and even stability.

However, Jon has never figured as a candidate and never shown the slightest degree of "southern ambitions", unlike his longing for Winterfell, and similarly on the magical side, despite the yearning by the faithful for Red Mel to work her magic and raise Jon by Fire in order to become Azor Ahai, all his magical connections so far have been to the other side. Add to which of course Azor Ahai doesn't sound like the hero he was touted to be. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, LynnS said:

Because we are talking about balance and symmetry, Rhaegar believes he will produce the princes for both ice and fire, since he also insists that Aegon is the PWIP.  So, I don't think it's a question of only one prince.

There we have an underlying problem. Those promoting Jon as the chosen one are often not unreasonably talking of a means of balancing the two sides, Ice and Fire, whether by partnering the two, as in Jon+Danaerys or as combining the two in one body, ie: R+L=J.

However Rhaegar, whose fault it is, was never talking about that at all. He talked of Three not two, and a three-headed dragon at that. Whether or not his talk of the three heads of the dragon is to be taken literally or metaphorically it doesn't represent a partnership between Ice and Fire. Perhaps more likely he was pursuing a super weapon with which to win the conflict/song between Ice and Fire

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Semi-random facts of the day: while staring at a bottle of sweet chili sauce (Blue dragon branded), I came across the 4 Dragon Kings that serve the Jade Emperor (in Chinese tradition):

-Red dragon: dragon of the south and summer

-Black dragon: dragon of the north and winter

-White dragon: dragon of the west and autumn

-Blue dragon: dragon of the east and spring.

In ASOAIF Targs are red dragons, Blackfyres are black dragons, Bloodraven is the white dragon.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
8 hours ago, Black Crow said:

There we have an underlying problem. Those promoting Jon as the chosen one are often not unreasonably talking of a means of balancing the two sides, Ice and Fire, whether by partnering the two, as in Jon+Danaerys or as combining the two in one body, ie: R+L=J.

However Rhaegar, whose fault it is, was never talking about that at all. He talked of Three not two, and a three-headed dragon at that. Whether or not his talk of the three heads of the dragon is to be taken literally or metaphorically it doesn't represent a partnership between Ice and Fire. Perhaps more likely he was pursuing a super weapon with which to win the conflict/song between Ice and Fire

Rhaegar was of the belief that his son was the prince that was promised.  Aemon seemed to be of the belief that the prince that was promised is a key figure in the war for the dawn:

Quote

“Swords alone cannot hold this darkness back. Only the light of the Lord can do that. Make no mistake, good sers and valiant brothers, the war we’ve come to fight is no petty squabble over lands and honors. Ours is a war for life itself, and should we fail the world dies with us.”

Quote

But all of them seemed surprised to hear Maester Aemon murmur, “It is the war for the dawn you speak of, my lady. But where is the prince that was promised?”

So assuming Aemon and Rhaegar shared similar beliefs, this song of ice and fire seems to be directly related to a second coming of the Long Night.  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)

For purposes of this discussion I think we need to review what little we know of Rhaegar:

Quote

Dany turned back to the squire. “I know little of Rhaegar. Only the tales Viserys told, and he was a little boy when our brother died. What was he truly like?”
The old man considered a moment. “Able. That above all. Determined, deliberate, dutiful, single-minded.

Single-minded is the phrase that sticks out to me.  It makes it seem unlikely that he would endanger his kingdom or his marriage to the mother of the prince that was promised to chase after a sixteen year old girl like some love sick puppy.

So whatever Rhaegar’s interest was in Lyanna I’m going to assume that it had to do with his beliefs of the prince that was promised, the three heads of the dragon, the song of ice and fire, and the war for the dawn.

My guess is that the fact that the Harrenhal tourney was arranged, presumably by Rhaegar, after a comet passed over King’s Landing, a comet that signified to Rhaegar that his child with Elia was the prince that was promised makes me think that the Harrenhal tourney was tied into Rhaegar’s prophetic beliefs.

Edited by Frey family reunion

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)

The riddle is what was the prince that was promised prophecy?  Specifically what did it mean to Rhaegar? Perhaps the answer lies in what it meant to Aemon, because Aemon’s thoughts on the matter is probably as close as we’ll get to Rhaegar’s.

We’re first told that Aemon believes that tptwp has to do with the war for the dawn.

We’re next told that the prince that was promised had similar elements as the Azor Ahai prophecy.

Quote

“No one ever looked for a girl,” he said. “It was a prince that was promised, not a princess. Rhaegar, I thought … the smoke was from the fire that devoured Summerhall on the day of his birth, the salt from the tears shed for those who died. He shared my belief when he was young, but later he became persuaded that it was his own son who fulfilled the prophecy, for a comet had been seen above King’s Landing on the night Aegon was conceived, and Rhaegar was certain the bleeding star had to be a comet.”

So the question is, does the prince that was promised prophecy also share other elements of the Azor Ahai prophecy?  Specifically, the parts of the prophecy with waking stone dragons?

Quote

“When the red star bleeds and the darkness gathers, Azor Ahai shall be born again amidst smoke and salt to wake dragons out of stone.”

We have at least one reason from Aemon to believe that the prince that was promised prophecy did deal with bringing back dragons:

Quote

“Daenerys is the one, born amidst salt and smoke. The dragons prove it.”

And Rhaegar did have a fascination with Summerhall an event that also had to do with dragons:

Quote

“It was the shadow of Summerhall that haunted him, was it not?”
“Yes. And yet Summerhall was the place the prince loved best. He would go there from time to time, with only his harp for company. Even the knights of the Kingsguard did not attend him there. He liked to sleep in the ruined hall, beneath the moon and stars, and whenever he came back he would bring a song. When you heard him play his high harp with the silver strings and sing of twilights and tears and the death of kings, you could not but feel that he was singing of himself and those he loved.”

Quote

“This talk of a stone dragon … madness, I tell you, sheer madness. Did we learn nothing from Aerion Brightfire, from the nine mages, from the alchemists? Did we learn nothing from Summerhall? No good has ever come from these dreams of dragons”

So we’re beginning to paint a picture of a man who was consumed by prophecy.  Specifically a prophecy involving bleeding stars, salt and smoke, a prince that was promised and probably a war for the dawn.  

We’re also dealing with someone who presumably is not content in sitting back and let destiny take its course.  But instead is someone who feels the need to take matters into his own hands.  

In other words we’re dealing with someone very much like Melisandre.  As controversial as that may sound.

So the final question is did Rhaegar also share Melisandre’s beliefs in the power of King’s Blood?

Quote

“Stannis waved a hand, dismissing his concern. “It is a chill, no more. He coughs, he shivers, he has a fever. Maester Pylos will soon set him right. By himself the boy is nought, you understand, but in his veins flows my brother’s blood. There is power in a king’s blood, she says.”

Quote

“Your brother’s blood,” Melisandre said. “A king’s blood. Only a king’s blood can wake the stone dragon.”

“Stannis ground his teeth. “I’ll hear no more of this. The dragons are done. The Targaryens tried to bring them back half a dozen times. And made fools of themselves, or corpses.”

Quote

“Melisandre put her hand on the king’s arm. “The Lord of Light cherishes the innocent. There is no sacrifice more precious. From his king’s blood and his untainted fire, a dragon shall be born.”

Now we may be very inclined to brush off Melisandre’s words as religious nonsense.  I mean surely Rhaegar wouldn’t believe something like that?  Or would he?

What gives me pause, is Aemon’s response to Melisandre’s wish to sacrifice those with King’s blood to further her goals.  

Quote

Burning dead children had ceased to trouble Jon Snow; live ones were another matter. Two kings to wake the dragon. The father first and then the son, so both die kings. The words had been murmured by one of the queen’s men as Maester Aemon had cleaned his wounds. Jon had tried to dismiss them as his fever talking. Aemon had demurred. “There is power in a king’s blood,” the old maester had warned, “and better men than Stannis have done worse things than this.”

  So Aemon at least agrees with Melisandre with one point.  That there is power in king’s blood.  In other words there is power in sacrificing the life of someone possessing king’s blood.

Do does Rhaegar believe this as well?  And what lengths would Rhaegar go to fulfilling his son’s destiny as the prince that was promised.  What lengths would Rhaegar go to “wake the dragon”?  

Did Rhaegar’s interest in Lyanna lie in the fact that any child by her would possess King’s blood?

Edited by Frey family reunion

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
16 minutes ago, Frey family reunion said:

  So Aemon at least agrees with Melisandre with one point.  That there is power in king’s blood.  In other words there is power in sacrificing the life of someone possessing king’s blood.

Do does Rhaegar believe this as well?  And what lengths would Rhaegar go to fulfilling his son’s destiny as the prince that was promised.  What lengths would Rhaegar go to “wake the dragon”?  

Did Rhaegar’s interest in Lyanna lie in the fact that any child by her would possess King’s blood?

I think aemon was talking about egg and his try to hatch dragon eggs.

Given the story of his birth I don't think rhaegar would be very inclined to play with fire to awake any dragon. In adition, any of the high lords duaghters have kings blood because there used to be several kingdoms. It didn't need to be lyanna.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)
21 minutes ago, divica said:

I think aemon was talking about egg and his try to hatch dragon eggs.

Very possible.  But Aemon said that better men have done worse.  Which implies more than one.

21 minutes ago, divica said:

Given the story of his birth I don't think rhaegar would be very inclined to play with fire to awake any dragon.

Yet Rhaegar doesn't shy away from Summerhall.  Instead he seems fascinated by it.   Something keeps luring him there, and inspiring him.  

21 minutes ago, divica said:

In adition, any of the high lords duaghters have kings blood because there used to be several kingdoms. It didn't need to be lyanna.

Here is where things get very interesting.  What does it mean to possess King's Blood.  Why is Melisandre so interested in Edric Storm?  Is it just because Edric was one of Robert's bastards made while Robert's fat ass sat on the Iron Throne?  Or does it have something to do with Edric's particular bloodline?  On Edric's father side he has bloodlines from both the Dragon Kings and the Storm Kings.  While on Edric's mother's side, the rumor is that House Florent is descended from the Gardner Kings.

So is the combination important?  Bloodlines from Dragon, Storm and Gardner?  If so Stannis should be wary because Shireen possesses those same bloodlines.

Are sources from multiple king's blood important?  

Which takes me back to Harrenhal.  A tourney where stories arose from what happened both day and night:

Quote

For seven days the finest knights and noblest lords of the Seven Kingdoms contended with lance and sword in the fields beneath the towering halls fo Harrenhal.  At night, victors and vanquished alike repaired to the castle's cavernous Hall of a Hundred Hearths, for feasting and celebration.  Many songs and stories are told of those days and nights beside the Gods Eye.  Some of them are even true.

So Rhaegar gathers knights, and lords from all over the seven kingdom.  As you stated, many of whom are directly descended from the First Kings.  We have young Storm lords, and young Rose lords (also rumored to be descended from the Gardner kings).  But only one family present could boast of being directly descended from the Winter kings.  The maid of which was awarded the winter crown from Rhaegar.

So what I wonder is what was happening at night more important for Rhaegar than what happened during the day?  The fact that they froliced in the Hall of a Hundred Hearths makes it even more intriguing to me.  Was Rhaegar cultivating multiple sources of King's blood at that tourney?  King's blood that was to be used to wake his dragon?

We know of at least one person close to Rhaegar's inner circle that came away pregnant from the tourney.

Edited by Frey family reunion

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
9 hours ago, Black Crow said:

Perhaps more likely he was pursuing a super weapon with which to win the conflict/song between Ice and Fire

Well, if this is about kings blood; here's another question...  If he kidnapped Lyanna; was it to bear his offspring or was it to prevent her from bearing Robert Baratheon's offspring?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


×
×
  • Create New...