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Clue in plain sight?


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It has been awhile since I posted, so I am sure that this has been discussed before, but I am curious to hear the thoughts of others.

GRRM and other writer's of his caliber frequently place clues in plain sight.  Things that seem innocuous - such as Olenna adjusted a hair net - mean much more.  In addition, he has a tendency to give hints to other plot lines while in other character's plot lines, such as when the Great Jon suggests that they can beat Tywin if they "catch him with his breeches down." Given this, I have been thinking about the Prologue to A Game of Thrones, particularly in regards to Waymar Royce, and it's possible connections to the Vale politics.

Royce is a dominant name in the Vale. It is alluded or implied that he became a ranging commander because of his name.

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Especially not a commander like this one.
Ser Waymar Royce was the youngest son of an ancient house with too many heirs. He was a handsome youth of eighteen, grey-eyed and graceful and slender as a knife. Mounted on his huge black destrier, the knight towered above Will and Gared on their smaller garrons. He wore black leather boots, black woolen pants, black moleskin gloves, and a fine supple coat of gleaming black ringmail over layers of black wool and boiled leather. Ser Waymar had been a Sworn Brother of the Night's Watch for less than half a year, but no one could say he had not prepared for his vocation. At least insofar as his wardrobe was concerned.

 We know from Jon III and Tyrion III.
 

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"He said he'd be back by my name day," he admitted. His name day had come and gone, unremarked, a fortnight past. "They were looking for Ser Waymar Royce, his father is bannerman to Lord Arryn. Uncle Benjen said they might search as far as the Shadow Tower. That's all the way up in the mountains."  - Jon III

 

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Mormont scarcely seemed to hear him. The old man warmed his hands before the fire. "I sent Benjen Stark to search after Yohn Royce's son, lost on his first ranging. The Royce boy was green as summer grass, yet he insisted on the honor of his own command, saying it was his due as a knight. I did not wish to offend his lord father, so I yielded. I sent him out with two men I deemed as good as any in the Watch. More fool I." - Tyrion III

It sounds like he is the son - albeit youngest son - of the Lord Royce - not a cadet branch of House Royce.

We know from Sansa II:

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Sansa remembered Lord Yohn Royce, who had guested at Winterfell two years before

and from Alayne I:

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Last of all came the Royces, Lord Nestor and Bronze Yohn. The Lord of Runestone stood as tall as the Hound. Though his hair was grey and his face lined, Lord Yohn still looked as though he could break most younger men like twigs in those huge gnarled hands. His seamed and solemn face brought back all of Sansa's memories of his time at Winterfell. She remembered him at table, speaking quietly with her mother. She heard his voice booming off the walls when he rode back from a hunt with a buck behind his saddle. She could see him in the yard, a practice sword in hand, hammering her father to the ground and turning to defeat Ser Rodrik as well. He will know me. How could he not? She considered throwing herself at his feet to beg for his protection. He never fought for Robb, why should he fight for me? The war is finished and Winterfell is fallen. "Lord Royce," she asked timidly, "will you have a cup of wine, to take the chill off?"

Yet, in all my looking, I cannot find a reason as to why Waymar was sent to the Wall.  Children of great lords are not immune from being sent to the Wall, certainly, but they also get a great deal more leniency in the penal system than a peasant or a lesser lord. So, what did he do to get sent to the Wall?

Also, please note in the Alayne quote, I bolded two distinct sections. One is that he was whispering quietly to Catelyn and the other references his voice booming.  If his voice boomed off the walls, if he was a man as big as the Hound, he most likely had to actively work at keeping his voice at a whisper.

So was Waymar going to the Wall a pretext for Bronze Yohn to come to Winterfell? Specifically, was it to talk to Catelyn Stark?

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Well, house Royce were first men kings so they probably have a stronger than average connection to the old gods. Like Ben was for the Starks, the Royces send a youngest son to do away with the problems youngest sons can cause (financial and socially, probably also politicly). He may have committed a crime despite, but all crimes are wiped clean at the wall which is why we never hear of it if it exists. as to why the dad went north, to visit his son of course. or given that Waymar was new to the wall, maybe to deliver him there. though this is just a simple explanation. there could be a cooler reason

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I think the answer to your question is, um, hidden in plain sight.

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Ser Waymar Royce was the youngest son of an ancient house with too many heirs.

I don't think Waymar was sent to the wall. He chose it.

Younger sons, who don't seem likely to inherit, sometimes seek other paths.  They may become a maester, or a septon, or a sellsword, or they may join the Watch. Benjen Stark did, and Theon considered it (ACOK 66).

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17 hours ago, Aebram said:

I think the answer to your question is, um, hidden in plain sight.

I don't think Waymar was sent to the wall. He chose it.

Younger sons, who don't seem likely to inherit, sometimes seek other paths.  They may become a maester, or a septon, or a sellsword, or they may join the Watch. Benjen Stark did, and Theon considered it (ACOK 66).

I think his demeanor and his custom blacks suggest that he wants to be there too, for what that's worth.  Doesn't necessarily mean that ol' Yohn didn't use the opportunity for his own purposes though. I wonder though what he would have spoken with Cat about beyond pleasantries and news of her uncle and sister.

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There is something to be said about him being a third son (Benjen was an excellent example). Robar went to Renly for similar reasons that he expresses to Cat. That said, Waymar’s overall demeanor does not suggest to me someone who would choose the Wall and celibacy.

Jon chose the Wall, partially because the celibacy angle and his feelings of being a bastard. Sam chose under threat of certain death. I wonder if Waymar had his arm twisted, so to speak, instead of becoming a hedge knight or something else. 

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I think the answer is also hidden in plain sight: Waymar was aggressive in pursuit of his individual goals, ambitious. He was only 18, a knight, and fucking demanded command of the ranging. Kid had his eyes on the Old Bear's seat before he even arrived at Castle Black, and other than the nerve to make demands of Mormont, he had gigantic balls. Dude absolutely threw down with a White Walker, never gave an inch.

It kinda sucks that he died, imagine Waymar and Jon interacting at the Wall, knowing they must have certainly met and spent some small amount of time together at Winterfell, and their fathers are close friends. 

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On 8/13/2021 at 4:41 PM, LindsayLohan said:

I think the answer is also hidden in plain sight: Waymar was aggressive in pursuit of his individual goals, ambitious. He was only 18, a knight, and fucking demanded command of the ranging. Kid had his eyes on the Old Bear's seat before he even arrived at Castle Black, and other than the nerve to make demands of Mormont, he had gigantic balls. Dude absolutely threw down with a White Walker, never gave an inch.

It kinda sucks that he died, imagine Waymar and Jon interacting at the Wall, knowing they must have certainly met and spent some small amount of time together at Winterfell, and their fathers are close friends. 

Waymar would have most certainly looked down on Jon Snow.  His name, despite being what he is, would have been on the ballot for LC.  We can also be assured that Waymar would not approve of letting Mance Rayder go unpunished.  He would have led the assassination team to rid the watch of Jon. 

Waymar doesn't have a promising future in the outside world.  Working and vocation is not acceptable in some circles.  It is for that reason that Randyll Tarly refused to send Sam for Maester training. 

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I think the entire point of the "noble" Waymar opener was to give the reader an initial impression of the Night's Watch as something other than a band of criminal conscripts so the reader is surprised as Jon finds out that his dreams don't align with reality.

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Committing your son to a lifetime of service at the Wall just so you can speak to one person is a rather big sacrifice to make. Especially given that the Starks and Royces have a long pre-existing relationship, cemented by historic marriages. 

Bronze Yohn could easily visit Winterfell any time he wanted while the Starks lived there without making such a huge sacrifice. He could propose discussions on a possible new marriage alliance, a new trading agreement or even just say that he wants to show his sons the North and Winterfell. I doubt Ned Stark would say no. 

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Waymar Royce is trying to fulfill prophecy. As the “youngest son of an ancient house” or prince who has recently become a “Sworn Brother of the Night’s Watch” or might we say sworn prince or promised prince. Waymar is forged 3x in his duel with the Other. Here’s the textual support showing the forging along with the quote from the prophecy:

1st Forging for AA: “Azor Ahai needed to forge a hero's sword, so he labored for thirty days and thirty nights at the sacred fires of a temple until it was done. However, when he went to temper it in water, the sword broke.”

1st forging for Waymar: Once Will saw “A shadow emerged from the dark of the wood.”, he then “heard the breath go out of Ser Waymar Royce in a long hiss.” Like tempering a sword in water. Then, “His voice cracked like a boy’s”.

2nd Forging for AA: “He was not one to give up easily, so he started over. Azor Ahai took fifty days and fifty nights to make another sword better than the first. To temper it this time, he captured a lion and drove the sword into its heart, but once more the steel shattered.”

After the first forging Will sees “a longsword like none that he had ever seen”. “And somehow Will knew it was sharper than any razor.” NOTE HERE: the last 4 letters of the quote. A Z O R. This blade was going to beat Waymar’s blade according to that sentence:) Note also that there’s a premise to this short essay ( not written here)successfully argues that the swords here in the prologue are figuratively symbolic of the person wielding their swords. (That’s in another essay) The point I am making is the sword belonging to the Other will not just shatter Waymar’s sword but figuratively Waymar also.

2nd forging for Waymar: In the next paragraph after the Other’s sword paragraph, “Ser Waymar met him bravely.” Perhaps showing the courage of a lion. Then, “When the blades met, there was no ring of metal on metal; only a high, thin sound at the edge of hearing, like an animal screaming in pain.” A lion? Perhaps. “Then Royce’s parry came a beat too late. The pale sword bit through the ringmail beneath his arm.” Beneath his arm(?), same area as his heart. “a beat too late”, heartbeat reference?? Maybe. “Then, Ser Waymar Royce found his fury…and he came up snarling,” Sounds like a lion. Then Waymar’s blade shatters. Here, one could argue that it’s Waymar being portrayed as the beast. However, it was the Others’ sword that “bit” Waymar. And that sword was described as, being “alive” with moonlight. And made of metal that was not “human”. It also had ghost-light that danced around its edges. So the sword had a mane of moonlight?? “The Other slid forward on silent feet”, much like a lion’s step. The evidence here seems in much less straightforward; however, when you add it all together I think it becomes a strong argument.

3rd forging for AA: “The third time, with a heavy heart(Here, I think of Lady Stonehenge, undead), for he knew beforehand what he must do to finish the blade, Azor Ahai worked for a hundred days and nights until it was finished. This time, he called for his wife, Nissa Nissa, and asked her to bare her breast. He drove his sword into her living heart, her soul combining with the steel of the sword, creating Lightbringer, the Red Sword of Heroes. Lightbringer was henceforth always warm to the touch.

3rd forging for Waymar: This one is a little less obvious. But if Will is symbolically Nissa Nissa. Then this would be the 3rd forging. He did call for Will. Here’s the quote, “Will, where are you?” Ser Waymar called up. “Can you see anything?” And perhaps he really broke Will’s heart.(emotionally) Here’s an odd quote that might speak to those feelings. Though we don’t see Will bearing his breasts. Perhaps he did that at Craster’s (tongue in cheek).

Next, it should also be noted that, “Ser Waymar had been a Sworn Brother of the Night’s Watch for less than half a year”…..The math here is 6 mos.= 180 days. This equals the time for the 3 forgings. 30+50+100= 180——Nice math right!

The next essay (not written) talks about Waymar joining his 12 new friends ( Three of them … four … five … ) that just stabbed him and his journey as the Last Hero will begin. The math here is 3+4+5=12. Each one got one stab. There is some more support for this math earlier in the chapter in the form foreshadowing. Earlier in the chapter Waymar asks Will, “ Have you drawn any watches this past week, Will?”. To which Will replies, “Yes ,m’lord”. Then Will thinks, “There never was a week when he did not draw a dozen bloody watches. What was the man driving at?” ….”Draw” or “Drawn” refers to the swords being drawn. Next, remember that the swords in the prologue all personify their wielder. So the Others in the Prologue are the swords that are drawn. Does this mean that Will drew them? I believe so but that can be another discussion. 

Furthermore, the Others in the Prologue are referred to as watchers. Here’s the quote, “Behind him, to right, to left, all around him, the watchers stood patient, faceless, silent….Then, of coarse, “bloody” would refer to the “cold butchery”. The Other who was heard also cracking and stabbed a courageous, snarling Waymar (the lion)has covered his sword in blood and is looking now for his Nissa Nissa. Is he Cold hands?? Not sure. Thanks for reading.

Consider this also,

Waymar was also a sword of Yohn Royce.

Look at the runes first on the Royce House sigil:

[Royce sigil](https://awoiaf.westeros.org/images/c/cf/House_Royce.svg)

The words for House Royce are “We Remember”. 

I think the runes on the sigil for House Royce spell out “ Royce Remember”. Take a look. I think you’ll agree. 

Now look at this:

https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/5/50/Futhorc_Rune_Chart.png

We are able to pull the letters for the name “Royce” and here it is:
R- riding
O- estate
Y- ?
C- Sun
E- Steed

Sun, steed, riding, (not sure what estate means, inheritance?), and we aren’t given “y” but the rest gives us this to consider:

It would be fun to look at Greek mythology and infer Yohn Royce the Bronze King as representing Apollo the Sun God and God of Prophecy. And then inferring his 3 sons as the three forgings of lightbringer. At minimum I think we can House Royce believes in the old prophecies. Check this out:

Andar Royce - Lost to The Lion of Lannister at the Hand’s Tourney at King’s Landing.(2nd forging)
Robar Royce - He becomes Robar the Red in Renly’s rainbow guard.(3rd forging)

Waymar Royce - would in this case represent the (1 st lightbringer forging.)

Waymar did fight some being with some watery description: “Its armor seemed to change color as it moved; here it was white as new-fallen snow, there black as shadow, everywhere dappled with the deep grey-green of the trees. The patterns ran like moonlight on water with every step it took.”

Again I think the meeting in the clearing was no chance meeting. It was prophesied. And Waymar was the sacrific. He had been groomed and was very prepared for his “vocation”. Waymar being stabbed under the arm reminds me of the spear of destiny used to stab Jesus. He dies with this “arm out-flung”. Jon dies with an arm out. Together they callus complete the image of Jesus on the cross.

Waymar’s hubris marred the way and changed the outcome of events for him.

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