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Who speaks to Arya in the godswood?


AryaRegina
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18 hours ago, AryaRegina said:

Interesting that he never mentions talking to Bran and that he seemed a bit confused about being called a crow, really interesting. While I do think dream talking is different than tree talking, so I wouldn't discount his ability to do it, you have raised an interesting question, whether BR and the 3EC are truly one and the same, but if not BR, who?

For a number of reasons, I'm inclined to believe that the three eyed crow was Old Nan the whole time.

I'm not trying to derail the thread, so rather than post a wall of text I'll just try and show one fun little connection.

I think Bloodraven is the Brooding Weirwood from Bran's dreams, which was there in his first falling dream, and while it sometimes appears with the crow, it doesn't always, and is explicitly distinct.

 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.

What else is as sharp as a sword? With an extra eye? A Needle!

"I know a story about a boy who hated stories," Old Nan said with her stupid little smile, her needles moving all the while, click click click, until Bran was ready to scream at her.

And of course this begs the question, with her indeterminant eye and hair color, who is Old Nan?

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On 4/11/2023 at 2:09 PM, Craving Peaches said:

Time travel would come close to if not ruin it for me...also BR had a big speech about how you cannot change the past...

 
 
 
 
 

BR tells that 'You cannot speak to him, try as you might' to Bran right after we see Bran successfully spoke to Ned and he reacted. This is probably meant to be shown that he is wrong.

We also have the Tyrion V chapter in ADWD where the Shy Maid is transported back in the river (or in time), but now the surroundings are different (stone hand on other side of the ship) and stone men attack them:

"The Bridge of Dream," said Tyrion.

"InconceiveableI" said Haldon Halfmaester. "We've left the bridge behind. Rivers only run one way."

Haldon denies the undeniable and the words used by him are same as the metaphor that Bloodraven uses to describe the flow of time:

"For men, time is a river. We are trapped in its flow, hurtling from past to present, always in the same direction. The lives of trees are different."

Edited by csuszka1948
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35 minutes ago, csuszka1948 said:

InconceiveableI" said Haldon Halfmaester. "We've left the bridge behind. Rivers only run one way."

Haldon denies the undeniable and the words used by him are same as the metaphor that Bloodraven uses to describe the flow of time:

Maybe the fact that Bloodraven’s name is Rivers, coupled with this quote, is a hint that time does usually only go in one direction. As a symbolic ‘river’ Bloodraven is unable to affect the past. 

But Bran is not a ‘Rivers’’, he is something new, which means established rules of time may not apply to him.

Furthermore, we should consider that Bran is half Tully - who are represented by the silver trout. And as everyone knows …

Trout can swim upstream.

Edited by Sandy Clegg
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3 hours ago, csuszka1948 said:

We also have the Tyrion V chapter in ADWD where the Shy Maid is transported back in the river (or in time), but now the surroundings are different (stone hand on other side of the ship) and stone men attack them:

"The Bridge of Dream," said Tyrion.

"InconceiveableI" said Haldon Halfmaester. "We've left the bridge behind. Rivers only run one way."

Haldon denies the undeniable and the words used by him are same as the metaphor that Bloodraven uses to describe the flow of time:

"For men, time is a river. We are trapped in its flow, hurtling from past to present, always in the same direction. The lives of trees are different."

Nice! I love that! :D

2 hours ago, Sandy Clegg said:

Maybe the fact that Bloodraven’s name is Rivers, coupled with this quote, is a hint that time does usually only go in one direction. As a symbolic ‘river’ Bloodraven is unable to affect the past. 

But Bran is not a ‘Rivers’’, he is something new, which means established rules of time may not apply to him.

Furthermore, we should consider that Bran is half Tully - who are represented by the silver trout. And as everyone knows …

Trout can swim upstream.

:agree:

Edited by Wizz-The-Smith
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On 4/11/2023 at 4:17 AM, AryaRegina said:

Or do you believe in the plain old nonmagical answer, that it's simply Arya recalling Ned's words to regain her courage, maybe spurred on by her connection to Nymeria?

I think it's both this, and Bloodraven. Not everything needs to have a magical solution, but it is true that Bloodraven would be watching her, and probably know of her connection to Nymeria. So it would make sense for him to take advantage of this to allow "destiny" or whatever to take its course. 

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On 4/11/2023 at 12:17 PM, AryaRegina said:

That night she lay in her narrow bed upon the scratchy straw, listening to the voices of the living and the dead whisper and argue as she waited for the moon to rise. 

On 4/11/2023 at 1:49 PM, Sandy Clegg said:

It speaks to her with different voices, gives her goose pimples then makes her feel dizzy for an instant.

To me, it's this moment of coldness + dizziness that is the subtle clue. A hint that this voice is not merely her imagination, but an outside force. And the fact that it speaks in different voices suggests that it is likely not the original owner of those voices. 

Sounds like ghosts. I think it is ghosts - they're mentioned so often it'd be almost strange if they didn't exist in a story where every other sort of magic does seem to exist.

So far the ghost mentions are all in history, but there's something else in the present story, which is spirits of the air. Sandor uses the phrase in an early chapter, and Dany I think is gifted a potion claimed to reveal spirits of the air. When Cersei questions Qyburn about the supernatural, he remembers studying the impression left by a woman who had just left her seat, theorising that something of the spirit is left when people die.

The actual 'spirits of the air' quotes are in the first book, but I think GRRM hasn't abandoned them, just hints at them with things like whispers in the wind, and the wind being like ghostly fingers ruffling hair (happens to Jaime a lot for some reason, irrc).

ETA    Another good one: Sweetrobin is haunted by the Marillion - don't think that could be BR or Bran, because it's too purposeless - a voice of the dead, not the living.

ETA2  There's a line from Arya's thoughts when she's trying to identify some soldiers (with their victims) - there could be a hidden truth or foreshadow placed in it.

Quote

I don't need to see the lion, I can see all the dead people, who else would it be but Lannisters?

 

Edited by Springwatch
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On 4/13/2023 at 10:48 PM, AryaRegina said:

This is a fantasy series, even if many readers prefer the political story, so I'm not counting anything out:)
I love the return of magic plotline.
Direwolves, greendreams, visions, prophesies, giants, children of the forest, skinchanging, face changing, glamours, glass candles, tree spying dragons, unicorns(:laugh:), and why stop there? I'd love to see even more in coming books.

The Yi Ti legends talk about the "God-on-Earth, the only begotten son of the Lion of Night and Maiden-Made-of-Ligh" who "ascended to the stars to join his forebears". My utmost expectation is the Prince That Was Promised is another son, a promise for again ten thousand years of "peace and plenty".

And Euron also believes along this line. The Forsaken:

Spoiler

A new god shall be born from the graves and charnel pits.

I hope we are far from the end of magic.

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  • 2 months later...
On 4/15/2023 at 10:46 PM, Springwatch said:

The actual 'spirits of the air' quotes are in the first book, but I think GRRM hasn't abandoned them, just hints at them with things like whispers in the wind, and the wind being like ghostly fingers ruffling hair (happens to Jaime a lot for some reason, irrc).

It's hard to discuss these more 'magical' aspects without sounding crazy, but in fact it is probable that 'disembodied spirits' will have to play an increasing role in future books. How else should we define the 'disembodied skinchanger spirit' which we have already seen in evidence:

  • Varamyr Sixskins
  • Bran through the weirwood roots (because clearly he didn't take his body with him)
  • Arya seeing through Nymeria and the cat
  • Jon  - who will very likely be spending significant portions of the next book with about as much body as a glass of English wine.

A narrative that involves skinchangers is as open to foreshadowing as anything else. So any Spirit of the Air-like whispers in the wind merit some scrutiny, in my opinion, whenever they appear in the books. 

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58 minutes ago, Sandy Clegg said:

A narrative that involves skinchangers is as open to foreshadowing as anything else. So any Spirit of the Air-like whispers in the wind merit some scrutiny, in my opinion, whenever they appear in the books. 

Here's one rather early in the series: 

A silence fell over the wood. For a moment all they heard was Sam's heavy breathing and the wet sound of Dywen sucking on his teeth. Jon squatted beside Ghost.
"Burn them," someone whispered. One of the rangers; Jon could not have said who. "Yes, burn them," a second voice urged.
The Old Bear gave a stubborn shake of his head. "Not yet. I want Maester Aemon to have a look at them. We'll bring them back to the Wall."   A Game of Thrones - Jon VII
 
This is from the scene when dead bodies of Othor and Jafer Flowers.  Who said "Burn them."?  Neither voice is identified. 

 

 

 

 

 

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The Three Eyed Crow being future Bran is one of my least favorite theories. Just thinking about it hurts my head. Also in Bran 3 of ADWD, Bran mentions that Lord Brandon takes the form of a crow while dream training him. My guess is Blood Raven doesn’t know the form he takes while communicating to Bran in his dream. 

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2 hours ago, sifth said:

The Three Eyed Crow being future Bran is one of my least favorite theories. Just thinking about it hurts my head. Also in Bran 3 of ADWD, Bran mentions that Lord Brandon takes the form of a crow while dream training him. My guess is Blood Raven doesn’t know the form he takes while communicating to Bran in his dream. 

Ditto. And it’s worth mentioning that Martin himself, when asked about whether he had always planned for the 3EC to be Bloodraven said something along the lines of, he always knew the 3EC would be tied to the Targaryens but only picked Bloodraven later on - I think when he was writing ASoS or something. So, there’s that, the author clearly talking about it. Not that that will stop readers from dismissing what he says b/c reasons. :lol:

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12 minutes ago, kissdbyfire said:

So, there’s that, the author clearly talking about it. Not that that will stop readers from dismissing what he says b/c reasons. :lol:

Why should they?  Who is this Martin fella and why does he say this stuff?   Does he drink and know things?   /s

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2 hours ago, kissdbyfire said:

Ditto. And it’s worth mentioning that Martin himself, when asked about whether he had always planned for the 3EC to be Bloodraven said something along the lines of, he always knew the 3EC would be tied to the Targaryens but only picked Bloodraven later on - I think when he was writing ASoS or something. So, there’s that, the author clearly talking about it. Not that that will stop readers from dismissing what he says b/c reasons. :lol:

I don't think 3EC = Bran is likely either. It would be an obvious twist, and is kind of cheesy .. that is my only gripe with it.

But that doesn't mean we won't get Bran influencing past events:

  • It's heavily implied with the explanation of how the trees see time differently, etc.
  • Plus he's already witnessed the past through the weirwood net - and that was in his very early forays into the weirwood.
  • It's unlikely he'll get worse at this. Why tease us then never show us the next steps?
  • All the lore of 'previous Brans' thousands of years ago is another huge tease.

So Bran's plot is opening up in a big way, and then the fun will begin. We only had to wait till the end of book one for dragons. But George has been withholding the magical Bran-through-time stuff for nearly 30 years, so I for one feel it's overdue.

I think George will have a hell of a task trying to make sense of all that, though, considering how even the Meereenese knot held him up for years. But put me in the 'not a hater' camp for time travelling Bran I guess. I welcome complexity and I think it can be done well, if George is doing it. Hating a flavour of mayonnaise, I get. Hating a feature of genre fiction - that I don't get. 

Back to Bran - I think some things will remain mysteries and that's ok. But I do like that eery feeling which comes from sensing that something possibly may be going on with Bran, since book one. For example, is this a hint of Bran revisiting his past self in book one? When he races ahead of the others on Dancer, finding himself alone with Robb for a brief moment ...

Quote

"I don't want to race." Bran looked around for the direwolves. Both had vanished into the wood. "Did you hear Summer howling last night?"

"Grey Wind was restless too," Robb said. His auburn hair had grown shaggy and unkempt, and a reddish stubble covered his jaw, making him look older than his fifteen years. "Sometimes I think they know things … sense things …" Robb sighed. "I never know how much to tell you, Bran. I wish you were older."

Robb seems older, which is odd. But nothing supernatural need be happening. I'll tread carefully here so as not to awaken the gods of tinfoil.

He says he never knows how much to tell Bran. Exactly the conundrum a 'future self' would have when interacting with their past self. Gotta watch out for paradoxes. Now, obvoiously Robb and Bran have the same hair colour, so Bran would naturally assume any such 'future self' is simply Robb. Yet also - and this is important - it is clear that this is also Robb. The way to look at it is this. George gives himself options:

  • The scene is just what it appears to be.
  • We have entered an 'uncanny space' where events meet a confluence and Bran is somehow able to see a version of himself from the future and Robb at the same time.
  • Bran has unknowingly entered a temporary 'vision state' and he is talking to his future self.
  • The scene is what it appears to be but ....George is setting up something: a moment in future books when Bran may have a vision of what he thinks is a memory -  with he and Robb in this forest. But next time it will be Bran from the future. 
  • The key aspect is that they are alone here. Communing in private. Even the dire wolves vanish. It's a moment which George can revisit in Bran chapters to come, using the idea of Bran believing he is speaking to Robb.

 Most importantly ... there's no need for George to ever answer this. He can just leave it as a moment where Robb talks to Bran. But I think this is one of the 'gardening seeds' that he likes to talk about. There's so much potential for shenanigans.

 

Edited by Sandy Clegg
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7 minutes ago, Sandy Clegg said:

I don't think 3EC = Bran is likely either. It would be an obvious twist, and is kind of cheesy .. that is my only gripe with it.

But that doesn't mean we won't get Bran influencing past events:

  • It's heavily implied with the explanation of how the trees see time differently, etc.
  • Plus he's already witnessed the past through the weirwood net - and that was in his very early forays into the weirwood.
  • It's unlikely he'll get worse at this. Why tease us then never show us the next steps?
  • All the lore of 'previous Brans' thousands of years ago is another huge tease.

Witnessing is one thing, travelling back and forth and influencing/changing things is quite another and, if I'm honest, quite cheesy and lazy. Just my 2p, obviously.

 

7 minutes ago, Sandy Clegg said:

So Bran's plot is opening up in a big way, and then the fun will begin.

That it will, but imo in a very different way. 

7 minutes ago, Sandy Clegg said:

We only had to wait till the end of book one for dragons. But George has been withholding the magical Bran-through-time stuff for nearly 30 years, so I for one feel it's overdue.

I think George will have a hell of a task trying to make sense of all that, though, considering how even the Meereenese knot held him up for years. But put me in the 'not a hater' camp for time travelling Bran I guess. I welcome complexity and I think it can be done well, if George is doing it. Hating a flavour of mayonnaise, I get. Hating a feature of genre fiction - that I don't get. 

Well... I hate all mayo, even vegan mayo! :P

7 minutes ago, Sandy Clegg said:

back to Bran - I think some things will remain mysteries and that's ok. I do like that eery feeling which comes from sensing that something possibly may be going on with Bran, since book one. For example, is this a hint of Bran revisiting his past self in book one? When he races ahead of the others on Dancer, finding himself alone with Robb for a brief moment ...

Robb seems older, which is odd. But nothing supernatural need be happening. I'll tread carefully here so as not to awaken the gods of tinfoil.

Now, Robb and Bran have the same hair colour, so Bran would naturally assume any such 'future self' is simply Robb. Yet also - and this is important - it is clear that this is also Robb. The way to look at it is this. George gives himself options:

  • The scene is just what it appears to be.
  • We have entered an 'uncanny space' where events meet a confluence and Bran is somehow able to see a version of himself from the future and Robb at the same time.
  • Bran has unknowingly entered a temporary 'vision state' and he is talking to his future self.
  • The scene is what it appears to be but ....George is setting up something: a moment in future books when Bran may have a vision of what he thinks is a memory -  with he and Robb in this forest. But next time it will be Bran from the future. 
  • The key aspect is that they are alone here. Communing in private. Even the dire wolves vanish. It's a moment which George can revisit in Bran chapters to come, using the idea of Bran believing he is speaking to Robb.

 Most importantly ... there's no need for George to ever answer this. He can just leave it as a moment where Robb talks to Bran. But I think this is one of the 'gardening seeds' that he likes to talk about. There's so much potential for shenanigans.

 

I agree there are lots of seeds in many of Bran's scenes. I also agree that Martin won't water and tend to all of them, and the trick will be which ones to care for and how. 

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