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Ran

[Pre-ADwD Spoilers] Asha - Spoilers for ADwD

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Btw, I don't think Asha broke or even twisted her ankle. She just stumbled over a root. She has a nasty blow to the head but she could recover quickly.

I thought when she fell, there was a snapping sound, which I assumed was her ankle breaking. But I've been wrong before! :P

Regina, about the pregnant Asha idea. That would be a twist, which I didn't consider. Possible.

On the one hand, poor Asha has enough on her plate already, without adding a pregnancy to the list. On the other hand, I hope I'm right just so I can say you all heard it here first! ;)

Re: The Piece of Prince

I had the impression that the skin was no longer "fresh," so to speak. I think it was described as being leathery and dry. (I can't believe some of the things I end up typing on this board.)

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Re: The Piece of Prince

I had the impression that the skin was no longer "fresh," so to speak. I think it was described as being leathery and dry. (I can't believe some of the things I end up typing on this board.)

Don't removed skin get leathery and dry fairly quick? It might have been a few days or a few weeks since the skin was removed.

Regarding "The Piece of Prince": Bolton and Umber had signed it (in Umbers case setting down the eqivalent of a X) but which other Houses had signed it?

( Didn't I ask this a couple pages back? Man, I might have to start re-reading my own posts :rolleyes: )

Slightly off-topic: In the AFFC appendix we see that women/children of Winterfell are held captive at the Dreadfort by Ramsay. Do anyone have any ideas as to why Ramsay's doing it? Unless Ramsay loves hearing stories I really don't see why he would bother with keeping someone like old Nan alive.

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We are going in circles here. Earlier on I pointed out that I agreed with you on this. But then you go off and say that "my problem with a Theon/Asha alliance with Stannis is not its plausibility per se, but rather the amount of time it would take to come to fruition and the likelihood that it will not offer much to either side in the end." I interpreted this as "because it will be of little benefit to Stannis he should ignore it". As long as we agree that they will come to some mutual beneficial agreement it doesn't matter if it doesn't turn the war immediately. I think we can agree on that? I have tried to say this before, so I apologise if it wasn't clear.

Jeez. As I've said multiple times, bolding it, repeating it, whatever, I never said Stannis should ignore the opportunity to ally the ironborn. What I did say is that I didn't think it would be enough and that there are some problems with it (i.e. that he needs reinforcements quickly, that Theon is still presumably imprisoned, etc.). The reason these timing issues are important is because if Moat Cailin has indeed fallen, which it apparently has, there is nothing standing in Bolton's way, and he has considerably more troops than Stannis at the moment. So, while working with Asha and Theon makes sense, I'm saying that Stannis still needs to pull another proverbial rabbit out of his hat.

Is that clear enough?

I would define any attacks on the Ironborn before they make peace with the Lannisters as "rushing off"...I imagine the Tyrells will have learned not to leave the Reach as weak as it was. Thus they wouldn't throw men and ships all over the country in such numbers again.
And as I've stated, there's no need for the Tyrells to dramatically alter their troop dispositions. They have hosts at Storm's End, under Mace, and Maidenpool, under Randyl Tarly. The reason they didn't go after the ironborn before was because they didn't have the ships, not because they were going to launch their own version of D-Day. They now have the ships to at least harass the ironborn, so I don't see why there's any insistence that they must ignore KL in order to use the fleet already there.

:lol: Probably a classic case of misunderstanding. I don't know where/if I said that but you are clear what I mean now anyhow? Just to be clear, Theon isn't supposed to be free at the moment, so its not particularly important what Aeron is doing. Once Theon has made his claim, then Aeron can up his "undermining" mission.

Again, I've never disagreed with the idea of Aeron undermining Euron. What I said is that since he's presumably been quiet all along, so he probably hasn't done much, if anything to start the process. That also takes time, time which allows Bolton to get further north.

As for the Frey business...I think you are exaggerating. The Frey's have largely got what they want. But there is no way that Jaime (or Genna for that matter) is going to be subservient to them.
Nothing to do with being subservient, it's a matter of dealing with allies properly. Is Jaime, generally speaking, right about the Freys? I think so, and I enjoyed him putting them in their place. That being said, the Freys are the ones who are holding the riverlands for the Crown, so they're still quite useful. Not to mention that if Walder Frey ever gets sufficiently pissed off, he could easily reveal the Lannisters' part in the Red Wedding, turning the Faith against them as well.

And Genna knows that Riverrun is a poison chalice, so she insists that Edmure is killed, the garrison murdered presumably etc. All to try and secure her hold on the castle. She is level-headed but she doesn't get everything right.

Yet, strangely, Jaime doesn't deny that she's right. He states "better 9 than 10", to paraphrase.

As for Jaime breaking his word. That's the point isn't it. He tries to keep it these days. You may argue that he shouldn't but been dishonourable didn't help him either.
What I said is that just because someone does something to keep their word or honorable doesn't mean they are doing the right thing, pragmatically speaking. Ned warning Cersei that he knew about her children was a really honorable thing to do, for example, but practically speaking it helped get him imprisoned and killed. I'm not going to compare what Jaime did to Ned, because I think Ned made the far bigger mistake, but I wasn't arguing anything from an honor being good or bad standpoint.

What do you know that they don't? Since you presumably think it would be foolish to release the Greatjon?

We do know that the Umbers have quite a few reasons to not like Bolton, we know (from Jon's spoiler chapters) that Stannis and Jon both regard the Umbers as not being that closely alligned with Bolton, with Jon specifically stating they were not siding with Stannis because he had allied the wildlings.

Yes Cersei is to blame for many bad acts. You are hardly blaming Jaime for Cersei?
You claimed that getting Mace out of KL was a great feat, which it wasn't, really, because it unleashed Cersei's inner nutjob.

---

To sum up, since I'm getting really tired of repeating myself time and time again.

1. Stannis can definitely use Asha and Theon's help, although it might displease some in the North

2. Freeing Theon and getting him named as king will take time, even if it succeeds

3. Because Moat Caillin has fallen or is about to fall, Stannis doesn't have a whole lot of time

4. Considering points 2 and 3, Stannis should not overally rely on ironborn help for the near future, and needs to continue to work on the Northern houses.

Clear enough? I don't see where we're disagreeing except for you interpreting my posts contrary to what I've actually been saying.

----

Urizen - here's what Regina had said

I think it did refer to sigils rather than actual names, which was one of the things that made it hard (for me, at least) to keep track of the various players. Your reference to crossed axes sounds familar, however, Ran. That one stood out because it reminded me of the crossed scythes of Harlaw(?).

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Don't removed skin get leathery and dry fairly quick? It might have been a few days or a few weeks since the skin was removed.

Yes, I also thought there was some reference to it been leathery and dry but I imagine you are right that this would happen quickly.

And nobody has remembered any other family who signed the Bolton letter (with a reasonable amount of confidence anyhow). Although you can exclude any other big names.

As for Old Nan, interesting question. Perhaps he wanted to prove how merciful the Boltons were compared to the heinous Ironborn? Then they could be seen as the saviours of the North, which would fit the marrying "Arya" scheme also.

I thought when she fell, there was a snapping sound, which I assumed was her ankle breaking.

Heh. :P Now that would be bad luck.

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Yes, I also thought there was some reference to it been leathery and dry but I imagine you are right that this would happen quickly.

Strangely enough, I have never before pondered how quickly flayed skin drys out, but I think you're right that it could be a fast process. (?) :stunned:

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I don't know how accurate this is, but I did some googling about flayed skin (The things I do for ASOIAF, to steal/change Jaime's line :P)

http://everything2.com/index.pl?node_id=94...p;lastnode_id=0

After a few days, the dead skin would dry up, crack and fall to pieces...

Shockingly enough, there doesn't appear to be much in the way of scholarly information on the subject.

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Ser Hippie,

1. Stannis can definitely use Asha and Theon's help, although it might displease some in the North

2. Freeing Theon and getting him named as king will take time, even if it succeeds

3. Because Moat Caillin has fallen or is about to fall, Stannis doesn't have a whole lot of time

4. Considering points 2 and 3, Stannis should not overally rely on ironborn help for the near future, and needs to continue to work on the Northern houses.

I completely agree. I'm tempted to go back and show you where you contradicted the above but that would be mean. :P

They now have the ships to at least harass the ironborn, so I don't see why there's any insistence that they must ignore KL in order to use the fleet already there.

My point was on what would happen if the Ironborn withdraw from Tyrell land. But fair enough, they will certainly harass the Ironborn until then.

Again, I've never disagreed with the idea of Aeron undermining Euron.
The problem was that you suggested that I think he is busy working away undermining Euron. :P The other problem is that you keep making comments like "that also takes time, time which allows Bolton to get further north." Of course it will. I've never suggested Theon will instaneously take the Iron Isles. But Aeron will be useful when the time comes. (Maybe you make statements like that for non-debating reasons but they come off really strangely).

Not to mention that if Walder Frey ever gets sufficiently pissed off, he could easily reveal the Lannisters' part in the Red Wedding, turning the Faith against them as well.

That's exaggeration. Jaime did nothing that would get Walder Frey very pissed off. There is a significant amount of Lannister troops helping to hold the Riverlands also. And was Jaime right about not killing Edmure? ;)

The problem with pragmatism and honour is that it is hard to pick and choose. They can be mutually exclusive. Jaime promised to free the regiment and he got Riverun reasonably painlessly. He could have broken his word but would he have won the next battle so easily? Thus I think Genna is wrong.

We do know that the Umbers have quite a few reasons to not like Bolton, we know (from Jon's spoiler chapters) that Stannis and Jon both regard the Umbers as not being that closely alligned with Bolton, with Jon specifically stating they were not siding with Stannis because he had allied the wildlings.

Jaime must know or at least suspect the same for all of that.

As for Cersei, nobody could have suspected that.

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I completely agree. I'm tempted to go back and show you where you contradicted the above but that would be mean. :P

I'll just quote myself -

Stannis doesn't really have time to be dicking around waiting for possible help, and even if Theon and Asha are set free and perfectly willing to help, any aid from the Isles would take quite a bit of time to arrive.
I'll repeat it again: my problem with a Theon/Asha alliance with Stannis is not its plausibility per se, but rather the amount of time it would take to come to fruition and the likelihood that it will not offer much to either side in the end. The point being that (1) it will take time for them to take over the Isles, (2) Stannis doesn't have enough strength to support them, (3) They may not be in position to help him anyway if the Reach attacks.

You're taking "an alliance with Theon/Asha isn't a sure enough thing for Stannis, who needs more substantial and immediate aid against Bolton" and turning it into "Stannis doesn't need/can't be helped by an alliance with Theon/Asha".
In my mind, it's pretty obvious what I'm saying, I just think you either didn't understand it or misunderstood it.

My point was on what would happen if the Ironborn withdraw from Tyrell land. But fair enough, they will certainly harass the Ironborn until then.

My point is that in addition to the fact that the Tyrells are perfectly capable of sending the Arbor fleet against the Isles, Mace's character makes it even more likely. His sole ambition in life seems to be to raise his family's status as high as it can go, without really thinking of the consequences (i.e. marrying Marg to Joff, agreeing to marry Willas to Cersei) - what the ironborn did was a slap in the face to him and his family.

The problem was that you suggested that I think he is busy working away undermining Euron. :P The other problem is that you keep making comments like "that also takes time, time which allows Bolton to get further north." Of course it will. I've never suggested Theon will instaneously take the Iron Isles. But Aeron will be useful when the time comes. (Maybe you make statements like that for non-debating reasons but they come off really strangely).
Here's what you said, and I'm quoting directly;

And things have changed since the kingsmoot as I have already described. Aeron's continued opposition will make Euron's fall possible.

I replied that Aeron was missing and presumed dead, so he probably hadn't been doing much undermining, which further delays Euron's overthrow. Again, you completely missed the point of what I was saying - not that Aeron was useless or dead or not going to help, but that it makes it more difficult for Stannis to get the help he needs ASAP.

That's exaggeration. Jaime did nothing that would get Walder Frey very pissed off.
Which is why I said (again quoting), "If Walder ever..., as in that Frey has proven to be a very venal and prickly man who would not hesitate to act when he feels insulted. Not that he would feel that way now.

There is a significant amount of Lannister troops helping to hold the Riverlands also.

The Lannister troops are moving to Raventree to get Tytos Blackwood to bend the knee, not to serve as a garrison. That's what the Freys are for.

And was Jaime right about not killing Edmure? ;)
Did you notice where Edmure is going? He's going to Castlery Rock to be a hostage/prisoner.

The problem with pragmatism and honour is that it is hard to pick and choose. They can be mutually exclusive. Jaime promised to free the regiment and he got Riverun reasonably painlessly. He could have broken his word but would he have won the next battle so easily?

From Jaime's perspective, the only remaining battle is to get the Blackwoods to bend the knee. Genna's complaint, in addition, was not just that he set them free, but that he also refused to question them about the Blackfish, etc.

Thus I think Genna is wrong.
Again, strangely Jaime agrees. He's just willing to live with it.

Jaime must know or at least suspect the same for all of that.

Why must he? He's probably never been north of Riverrun, whereas Last Hearth is on the complete other side of the realm. He's probably never met an Umber and anything he knows is second or third or fourth-hand information.

As for Cersei, nobody could have suspected that.

Other than Tywin or Tyrion or Jaime or Littlefinger or Kevan or any of many others who recognize that Cersei is liable to do stupid things because she fancies herself to be another Tywin Lannister.

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I dont see Stannis making a king for the iron islands, but he can raise up a loyal Lord of the iron islands. The kingsmote is a open rebellion against him, Stannis can use Asha to end Euron's rebellion. If Theon was to escape the dread fort Stannis is going the kill him anyway.

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Wow...what a good thread. So much has been rehashed to death so this is a true joy to read. :) I need to do a re-read I admit, so I can only speak about my impressions from what I remember.

About Bolton: iirc, Rob thought highly of him and his forces but Bolton has shown a lack of skill at commanding forces in the field imo. Bolton's victories have come more by stealth and treachery correct? While this makes him cunning, it doesn't make him a good battlefield commander. I note this because of the debate about what may happen if Stannis and his forces collide in the field. As far as Bolton's popularity with the northern lords go...I think the only reason any of the northern lords would side with him is because he has the strongest/largest army. After what BoB has done and then the Redwedding, I don't see any northern house strongly/eagerly supporting him. Especially with his alliegiance with the Freys.

The Redwedding was a huge breach in ettiquette, which all of the northern families hurt by it will remember and will be biggest part of Bolton's undoing. I think Bolton has no chance at Mormont support considering this. The majority of the northerners have always seemed more "direct." The Karstarks are a perfect example of this imo. The Karstarks partook in the Redwedding because of their Lord's/kinsman's execution by Rob, not because of a political agenda. Their blood was up and Bolton took advantage of this. The only reasons I see the Umbers siding with him is because the Greatjon is his captive or the two Uncles want power for themselves. All throughout the series to date, the northmen have come off as peoples who strongly believe in family loyalty (not sure I'm say this correctly). In my mind, because of this, Bolton has stood out from them and always reminded me more of a non-northern lord with his double-dealing and backstabbing political ways. If the Umber uncles sided with Bolton to seize power for themselves, I would not be the least surprised to see them dump him for killing their blood kinsmen once their power was secured...the whole blood is thicker than water thing. Stannis may have the wildlings, but he is a much more honorable man than Bolton and a proven battle-field commander; something that means a lot to the northerners. I think the Umbers will eventually weigh the evils here, fighting alongside the wildling or remaining allied with a man who killed their heir and held captive their liege. How can the uncles maintain control of the Umber people while sided with Bolton, while Bolton has so much Umber blood on his hands.

For these reasons, I think Stannis means Bolton's doom as well, either directly or indirectly. As I said before, I believe Bolton maintains power only by being stronger than his opposion (i'm talking about Bolton troops here and not Bolton Troops + Northman Allied troops), not because he has inspired loyalty amongst the norther lords. Stannis' presence and opposion provides an option for the northern lords that will be very palpable to them. Bolton needs to crush Stannis to firm up his control of the north. If Stannis continues to free northern lands from the ironborn (as assumed by this chapter to have happened at least once), then Bolton will have few friends. If it is learned that there is at least one Stark alive and supported by Stannis...then there is no question how things will play out.

As I stated earlier, I need a serious re-read. I think I'm going to look particulary at how Bolton is viewed pre-redwedding and his actual tatical powers in the field. But until the northerners are shown to me to be just as fickle as the southern lords, I'll never believe a blacksheep like Bolton can maintain amongst them.

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Ser Hippie, there is nothing wrong with changing your mind. I've done it many a time. Check posts number 83 and 86 if you wish to see how you have adapted your views. :) There are some similarities with your more recent views but obvious differences also.

Ok, so you are insisting that Mace will attack the Iron Islands before he has dealt with the Lannisters? I do agree that he will want revenge if and when there is peace with them. Mace is certainly a little dumb but his mind will be focused on making sure Margarey is freed and they haven't lost any power in KL. That's where he really has to worry about his "family status". So luckily he wouldn't have a chance to make a mess of things elsewhere.

I think we are getting somewhere now at least. :) So onto explaining "Aeron's continued opposition will make Euron's fall possible", since this seems to have confused things. Aeron opposed Euron in the kingsmoot. Aeron still opposed Euron when he hid and Aeron will oppose Euron if Theon emerges as a contender. Thus I say "continued" opposition. Now obviously while Aeron is hiding it wouldn't be a very effective opposition but he still opposes him. That's all I meant. A rather small point which has gone backwards and forwards since. I'm well aware that Stannis wouldn't get help from the Isles quickly (in all likelihood).

Which is why I said (again quoting), "If Walder ever..., as in that Frey has proven to be a very venal and prickly man who would not hesitate to act when he feels insulted. Not that he would feel that way now.
If he doesn't feel that way not, who cares what he may or may not feel in future? (Actually though, Frey would hesitate. He would wait years for revenge if required. Wait until his enemy is weak and strike).

And yes, the Lannister troops are going to put down the rebels but don't expect them to disappear anytime soon. As you said, Genna Lannister has smarts.

Did you notice where Edmure is going? He's going to Castlery Rock to be a hostage/prisoner.

Okkkkk...your point is?

Again, strangely Jaime agrees. He's just willing to live with it.
Because what were his choices? Kill them all? Keep them all in prison for years? Jaime isn't worried about them because they are not a threat.

Although Jaime does know he'll face more decisions like the Edmure/garrison one in future. Maybe in battle, maybe somewhere else. Don't believe that he has only 1 remaining battle. :)

And remember...Greatjon lost a son at the Red Wedding. He just might possibly be upset at that. :P Its also possible that Jaime will know that the Greatjon was one of Robb's most loyal men. (Its the kind of martial story that Jaime would be interested in). The idea that he would let Greatjon go when Stannis has reemerged as a threat is shocking.

Other than Tywin or Tyrion or Jaime or Littlefinger or Kevan or any of many others who recognize that Cersei is liable to do stupid things because she fancies herself to be another Tywin Lannister.

Hmm. You can't have forgotten the classic LF quote? "I always anticipated that she would beggar the realm and destroy herself, but I never expected she would do it quite so fast". He then goes onto talking about expecting to have 4 or 5 years of peace.

I'm not arguing that Cersei was a great ruler, i'm just giving his faith in her some context, since LF is probably the cleverest man in the kingdom.

Although, it should be noted that Jaime is constrained in what he can do. He once openly opposed a king and look how that turned out. :P

Rudd,

while I would like to believe that Stannis will be able to win the war, there are some concerns. One is that Ramsay is supposed to marry "Arya Stark" (every other Stark has dissappeared and presumed dead). This will cement his claim. Even if another Stark appeared, Stannis has promised the Karstarks Winterfell, so that will fracture their relationship. Stannis is also a foreigner who uses wildings, not very endearing for the rather inward looking North. And as you mention, Roose has a lot more men and hostages to ensure the continued support of some of his families. Really, neither side is particularly attractive, we can but hope that Stannis's strengths that you mention come to the fore.

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rudd32,

t Bolton has shown a lack of skill at commanding forces in the field imo.

He hasn't shown much of anything regarding his skill -- he certainly hasn't shown a _lack_, however. His apparent primary goal while commanding forces for Robb was to enhance House Bolton's position first and foremost -- House Stark and all the other houses were very distant in his thoughts. As GRRM has noted, Bolton's forced march at the Green Fork was very calculated: if by some off-chance he wins a great victory, it's all to his credit, and if he loses, he can make sure that the levies of other houses feel the brunt of it (GRRM notes that Roose made sure to minimize harm to himself).

Other than this, we've no great example of his leadership beyond his being treacherous and cunning, true enough. This doesn't mean he has no skill in it, it just means he's not chosen to use his skill to Robb Stark's general advantage. Certainly, Robb thought he could be a good commander. Certainly he did not go so far as to fall into Tywin Lannister's trap to the point where Tywin remarked on "Robb" being more cautious than he had imagined he would be, and then he lead the Northmen away in good order, leaving them still capable of fighting if needs be. And of course, he and Ramsay appear to have taken Moat Cailin, which is not, I think, an inconsiderable feat even if it's pretty vulnerable from the North.

[Edited by Ran: Correcting the conflation Markus notes further down.]

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<snip>

Rudd,

while I would like to believe that Stannis will be able to win the war, there are some concerns. One is that Ramsay is supposed to marry "Arya Stark" (every other Stark has dissappeared and presumed dead). This will cement his claim. Even if another Stark appeared, Stannis has promised the Karstarks Winterfell, so that will fracture their relationship. Stannis is also a foreigner who uses wildings, not very endearing for the rather inward looking North. And as you mention, Roose has a lot more men and hostages to ensure the continued support of some of his families. Really, neither side is particularly attractive, we can but hope that Stannis's strengths that you mention come to the fore.

Well...I'm not sure Stannis has to win the war...I know that's vague...but Stannis can still lose the war and bring Bolton down. Imo, all Stannis has to do is expose Bolton's weaknesses for the other northerners/eliminate Bolton's hold on them via hostages er whatever. And Theon knows the real Arya Stark. The Karstarks may want Winterfell, but they have not shown to this point that they want it by treachery. If the Karstarks knew "Arya" wasn't the real Arya Stark, would they go through with what Bolton has to offer? I know we don't know these current Karstarks well, but if they were anything like their deceased liege...would he have done something like that from the way the books portrayed him? If Stannis gets a hold of Theon and hooks up with any of the Winterfall's former household guard (if any are left), loses but weakens Bolton's position enough, then a vacuum in the north has been created for someone (Stark preferably) to enter and fill the void.

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he withdrew the Northmen in good order at the Green Fork to the point where Tywin remarked on "Robb" being more cautious than he had imagined he would be.

"Robb" was more cautious than Tywin expected because he didn't take Tywin's bait: the collapsing left flank. It had little to do with withdrawing in good order once it was clear that Tywin had won the battle.

Bolton not falling for Tywin's trick -- either because he saw through it or because he was simply cautious -- speaks for his skills as a commander, though.

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rudd32,

He hasn't shown much of anything regarding his skill -- he certainly hasn't shown a _lack_, however. His apparent primary goal while commanding forces for Robb was to enhance House Bolton's position first and foremost -- House Stark and all the other houses were very distant in his thoughts. As GRRM has noted, Bolton's forced march at the Green Fork was very calculated: if by some off-chance he wins a great victory, it's all to his credit, and if he loses, he can make sure that the levies of other houses feel the brunt of it (GRRM notes that Roose made sure to minimize harm to himself).

Other than this, we've no great example of his leadership beyond his being treacherous and cunning, true enough. This doesn't mean he has no skill in it, it just means he's not chosen to use his skill to Robb Stark's general advantage. Certainly, Robb thought he could be a good commander, and certainly he withdrew the Northmen in good order at the Green Fork to the point where Tywin remarked on "Robb" being more cautious than he had imagined he would be. And of course, he and Ramsay appear to have taken Moat Cailin, which is not, I think, an inconsiderable feat even if it's pretty vulnerable from the North.

Exactly Ran...I wasn't good at clarifying my point. Bolton did a good job of positioning himself without costing him Bolton troops...but what if he gets to a point where he "has" to go head to head with Stannis. If Stannis can out leader Bolton on the field of battle, even if Stannis can't defeat Bolton due to lack of men, this may embolden the other northern lords by showing them Bolton's weakenesses. More later...got to run.

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Ser Hippie, there is nothing wrong with changing your mind. I've done it many a time. Check posts number 83 and 86 if you wish to see how you have adapted your views. :) There are some similarities with your more recent views but obvious differences also.

Here's the point of Post 83

So...while on one level it makes sense, I think Stannis would be risking a lot for not much help (at least on land, where he needs it).
Note; I didn't say he should not do it at all, I said he would be risking a lot because of the potential problems involved. In post 86, I stated that I wasn't sure that Stannis would want Theon as king/leader of the Isles and that even if he did, I wasn't sure the ironborn would want Theon themselves. I also questioned if the ironborn would be able to substantially help Stannis. Nowhere did I say that I thought he should give up on the ironborn; my position all along is that I think securing support from the North would be more likely to be helpful and that the ironborn route is a risky one.

To repeat a point I've made in every post on the subject - I think Stannis will get much more tangible help from Northern houses than the ironborn. That doesn't mean he should ignore that possibility, but rather that he should focus his energies on securing other allies so he's still alive and a threat to Bolton if and when the Greyjoys come to his aid.

If you still don't understand, I'll do it in point form again

1. The ironborn alliance is a possibility for Stannis

2. There are many potential problems with this alliance which include

- Northmen dont like the ironborn

- Needing to free Theon, presumably from the Dreadfort

- The ironborn are not particularly skilled infantrymen outside of raids, etc.

- The time needed to actually get Theon on the throne and then get help back to the North

- The possibility that Theon may fail to secure the throne

- The possibility that the Isles may be attacked, keeping reinforcements from coming

3. (conclusion) Because of these risks, Stannis would do well to treat the ironborn alliance as a nice 'side project', but not rely too much on it.

Note, that I believe that many of these problems are real, but that doesn't mean it's not worth considering at the least. All I've done is question how much Stannis can expect to get out of said alliance, and if the help could arrive in time. The difference you're apparently not getting; I'm saying that Stannis should use the ironborn as "plan B", with getting support from the Manderlys and other houses as "plan A". You're acting is if I'm saying he can only do one thing/follow one plan.

Ok, so you are insisting that Mace will attack the Iron Islands before he has dealt with the Lannisters? I do agree that he will want revenge if and when there is peace with them...So luckily he wouldn't have a chance to make a mess of things elsewhere.

Mace and Randyl Tarly have two full hosts within marching distance of KL. The Arbor fleet is already in position to attack the Shields, and then Isles, or at least getting very close to it. Again, nothing requires Mace to move large amounts of troops west, nor does he have to go there himself. He has Garlan and Willas both there, as well as Lord Redwyne commanding the fleet, so I really don't understand why Mace can't send his massive armies towards KL while the fleet/other troops keep the ironborn occupied. Again, for the ironborn to be kept out of the picture in the North, all that needs to happen is for them to feel threatened enough to keep their forces at home. With the Iron Fleet gone, that doesn't require as much from the Reach.

A rather small point which has gone backwards and forwards since. I'm well aware that Stannis wouldn't get help from the Isles quickly (in all likelihood).
And if you read my posts, you'll see the objection I have to the alliance is not that it is useless, but that the timing of getting support isn't particularly good for Stannis with Bolton marching...so I still don't understand why you objected to that in the first place. Again; Aeron helping Theon makes sense, it's the timing of it all that will hurt Stannis which is my entire point. If Aeron has been in hiding this whole time, he hasn't been undermining Euron or strengthening the opposition to him, so it doesn't help Stannis get help any faster.

If he doesn't feel that way not, who cares what he may or may not feel in future? (Actually though, Frey would hesitate. He would wait years for revenge if required. Wait until his enemy is weak and strike).

Because...if Jaime is insulting the Freys, wouldn't that probably help build up resentment? We already know Walder Frey was not a fan of Tywin or the Lannisters, and that he turned his cloak because (1) he was pissed about Robb's wedding and (2) the Lannisters looked ready to win the war. Why should the Lannisters risk having him or some other Frey act against them if they don't have to? Again, it's needless provocation of people the Lannisters need for now.

And yes, the Lannister troops are going to put down the rebels but don't expect them to disappear anytime soon. As you said, Genna Lannister has smarts.
Genna Lannister and her husband are getting a 200 man garrison, nothing more. Jaime even remarks that that's too much, and that's for Riverrun, a major stronghold.

Okkkkk...your point is?

You compared the treatment of the garrison to that of Edmure, when they're quite different. In the case of Edmure, Jaime didn't let him go; Edmure had the choice of captivity or taking the black (which he isn't going to do with a child on the way). The point is, Edmure is a danger that he wisely chooses to keep under his control (the same with Jeyne Westerling). With the garrison, he chooses to not question them and says having 9 of 10 take up arms against him is better than having all of them - so he readily admits he's giving future enemies a way out.

Because what were his choices? Kill them all? Keep them all in prison for years? Jaime isn't worried about them because they are not a threat.
At the very least, could he have questioned some of them about the Blackfish and, the point being, he doesn't seem at all bothered by an obvious issue (that hundreds/thousands[?] of men hostile to him will be set loose. He could have sent some to serve elsewhere in the realm or to march with his army (he has other men from teh riverlands with him, after all), imprisoned some, kept a small number in Riverrun, etc. Rather than do that, he lets them all free with only an oath to keep them 'loyal', and Jaime of all people knows the value of an oath. In addition, he agrees that the vast majority will probably take up arms against himself or the Lannisters. How is that not a threat, or at least a potential one?

Although Jaime does know he'll face more decisions like the Edmure/garrison one in future. Maybe in battle, maybe somewhere else. Don't believe that he has only 1 remaining battle. :)

I said he believes he is going to Raventree to end the war in the riverlands, not that I think he has no more battles to fight. Apart from Blackwood, no one else is fighting against the crown save the ironborn, which are not Jaime's concern. As far as he or most others are concerned, the war is over and the Lannisters have won.

And remember...Greatjon lost a son at the Red Wedding. He just might possibly be upset at that. :P Its also possible that Jaime will know that the Greatjon was one of Robb's most loyal men. (Its the kind of martial story that Jaime would be interested in). The idea that he would let Greatjon go when Stannis has reemerged as a threat is shocking.
Why is it shocking? He's planning on returning hostages to the riverlords who he has seen firsthand are not really loyal to the crown. How would the Umbers, who are fighting with Bolton, any different?

Hmm. You can't have forgotten the classic LF quote? "I always anticipated that she would beggar the realm and destroy herself, but I never expected she would do it quite so fast". He then goes onto talking about expecting to have 4 or 5 years of peace.

I'm not arguing that Cersei was a great ruler, i'm just giving his faith in her some context, since LF is probably the cleverest man in the kingdom.

Not peace; time to 'plant seeds'. Again, you're missing the point. Everyone who knows her is not at all surprised that she's a terrible ruler, the surprise is that even she managed to go downhill so quickly. Kevan says she's unfit as a mother and a ruler, Olenna Tyrell regularly mocks her, Tywin thinks she's an idiot, Tyrion notes that she's like "wildfyre" and lacks the reason to be a good ruler. Lord knows what the non-Lannisters think.

Although, it should be noted that Jaime is constrained in what he can do. He once openly opposed a king and look how that turned out. :P
He murdered a king, perhaps justly, but never actually openly opposed him until that last act.

-----

Bolton's victories have come more by stealth and treachery correct? While this makes him cunning, it doesn't make him a good battlefield commander. I note this because of the debate about what may happen if Stannis and his forces collide in the field. As far as Bolton's popularity with the northern lords go...I think the only reason any of the northern lords would side with him is because he has the strongest/largest army.

Bolton took Harrenhal via treachery, you're right. Although we only see him in battle once (at the Battle of the Green Fork, where he loses), he apparently has the reputation of being a smart/defensive commander who avoids taking big losses when he can. Part of that, of course, is that he puts other Houses in harms way, but he seems to be at least a competent, if uninspiring, commander. I believe you're right, though, that he's only supported because of his strength, although Stannis' support of the wildlings helps a good deal too, especially w/regards to the Umbers.

How can the uncles maintain control of the Umber people while sided with Bolton, while Bolton has so much Umber blood on his hands.

1. The Greatjon is a hostage and they might well be trying to keep him alive; if they switch sides, he's as good as dead.

2. They dislike the wildlings a lot because they deal with wildling raiders all the time. They probably hate Bolton too, but he's more likely to leave them alone.

Overall, though, I think you're quite right in that Bolton has support because he's strong rather than because people like him or want him to rule. The problem for Stannis is one of logistics - he has very few troops compared to Bolton, and needs to prove he can win, as discussed earlier. Personally, I think he needs a victory over the Boltons (either on the battlefield or freeing Theon by using a commando attack on the Dreadfort, whatever) in order to secure more support. He also needs the Manderlys and at some point he's going to have to work out the wildlings/Umbers problem.

Either way, if it's not Stannis, I think Bolton is going to go down at some point, especially with the Starks prophecized to return to Winterfell. I don't see Ramsay or Roose co-existing well with Starks after this (and I'd prefer the Starks to Stannis, honestly :P)

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1. Stannis can definitely use Asha and Theon's help, although it might displease some in the North

2. Freeing Theon and getting him named as king will take time, even if it succeeds

3. Because Moat Caillin has fallen or is about to fall, Stannis doesn't have a whole lot of time

4. Considering points 2 and 3, Stannis should not overally rely on ironborn help for the near future, and needs to continue to work on the Northern houses.

This is true, however Asha's plan is the only reason Stannis won't return them to the Iron Isles. Her goals, as stated at the Kingsmoot, always were humble and realistic than Euron or Victarion's. It will fall right into Stanis' way of thinking.

I'll repeat it again: my problem with a Theon/Asha alliance with Stannis is not its plausibility per se, but rather the amount of time it would take to come to fruition and the likelihood that it will not offer much to either side in the end. The point being that (1) it will take time for them to take over the Isles, (2) Stannis doesn't have enough strength to support them, (3) They may not be in position to help him anyway if the Reach attacks.

Consider the fact that this entire series is running on an accelerated time schedule. Cat of the canals spent eight montsh in Braavos (or so I'm told) in a matter of 15 pages. With that said, Stannis Baratheon is trying to win a two front war with numerically inferior numbers. Uniting the Northmen will take nearly as much time without a loyal lord whom they will all recognize; or did you think that it would be as simple as asking the Northern Lords. Despite any difficulties having the son of the prior King of the Iron Isles puts him at a more advantageous position with them than with the North considering that its thier loyalty he requires and not thier lands. He is not very close with either of them, and I don't think that either of these issue are ones which he figures he's sure to solve in a matter of months.

You're taking "an alliance with Theon/Asha isn't a sure enough thing for Stannis, who needs more substantial and immediate aid against Bolton" and turning it into "Stannis doesn't need/can't be helped by an alliance with Theon/Asha".
I will repeat, there is no immediate substantial aid available to use against Bolton. How do you think that without Jon to use to rally the Northern Lords, he is that much closer with them than with the Ironmen. If he's thinking "No I'd better focus soley with rallying the Northern Lords because I'm really close with them," he's fooling himself. Either way, its going to take time. He might as well make a small effort in the Isles direction for contingencies sake.

dont see Stannis making a king for the iron islands, but he can raise up a loyal Lord of the iron islands. The kingsmote is a open rebellion against him, Stannis can use Asha to end Euron's rebellion. If Theon was to escape the dread fort Stannis is going the kill him anyway.

I agree with most of this, but why kill Theon? He was never a part of the Kingsmoot, hence his ability to contend Euron's rulership. In addition he also had humbler plans for the Ironborn.

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:lol: I honestly don't mean to be offensive (although this can only be taken offensively I suppose). Ser Hippie, is English your 1st language?

For this discussion is getting bizarre. Its like you have to disagree with everything I say even when what I say is blatantly true. Just take this one line as an example.

Not peace; time to 'plant seeds'.

Quoting...

"I had hoped to have four or five quiet years to plant some seeds and allow some fruits to ripen".

One way to end this discussion straight away is for you to insist that there is a major difference between "four or five quiet years" and "peace".

Now you could just have made an honest mistake here. And that's fair enough. I just wanted to check before I go on. :)

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This is true, however Asha's plan is the only reason Stannis won't return them to the Iron Isles. Her goals, as stated at the Kingsmoot, always were humble and realistic than Euron or Victarion's. It will fall right into Stanis' way of thinking.

Asha's plan is not feasible as it stands because Euron is king. She needs to overthrow Euron (using Theon) in order to act on it.

Consider the fact that this entire series is running on an accelerated time schedule. Cat of the canals spent eight montsh in Braavos (or so I'm told) in a matter of 15 pages.
No, time as in "Westeros time", not pagewise. Bolton has probably taken Moat Cailin and is marching north, so Stannis has a limited time to act. His best course of action is to try to rally some North lords to him and free Theon. The point I was making is that freeing Theon is not likely to be enough, so he ought to realize that and continue to try to get people like the Glovers, Mormonts, etc.

With that said, Stannis Baratheon is trying to win a two front war with numerically inferior numbers. Uniting the Northmen will take nearly as much time without a loyal lord whom they will all recognize; or did you think that it would be as simple as asking the Northern Lords. Despite any difficulties having the son of the prior King of the Iron Isles puts him at a more advantageous position with them than with the North considering that its thier loyalty he requires and not thier lands. He is not very close with either of them, and I don't think that either of these issue are ones which he figures he's sure to solve in a matter of months.

You're right, which is why I said he should be working both sides.

I will repeat, there is no immediate substantial aid available to use against Bolton. How do you think that without Jon to use to rally the Northern Lords, he is that much closer with them than with the Ironmen. If he's thinking "No I'd better focus soley with rallying the Northern Lords because I'm really close with them," he's fooling himself. Either way, its going to take time. He might as well make a small effort in the Isles direction for contingencies sake.

Again, this is why I said that he should use the ironborn as a "plan b", with the hope of getting some aid down the road. He needs to work on the Northern lords for several reasons.

1. It weakens Bolton at the same time

2. He needs them to hold the North

3. They have more troops than the ironborn (more of a long term thing).

As I and others have posted, it's not as if the Northmen love Bolton either, so the potential is there. I can't think of one Northern house that has any real reason to stand on Bolton's side if given a reasonable alternative. Stannis' job, then, is to find a way to convince them that he is that other reasonable option, probably through winning a battle or two. I would post more but, honestly, that's been well covered by others much better than I could already.

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:lol: I honestly don't mean to be offensive (although this can only be taken offensively I suppose). Ser Hippie, is English your 1st language?

It is, and I do find it offensive since most of your 'points' are you saying what you think I'm saying and just ignoring what I've been repeating many, many times, and using patronizing language to make it seem like that's doing me a favor. If you have points, feel free to make them.

Yes, I remembered the quote wrong because I was going from memory. What's bizaare is that you seem to think that proves you're right when my initial point was

You claimed that getting Mace out of KL was a great feat, which it wasn't, really, because it unleashed Cersei's inner nutjob

You then claimed that "no one" could see Cersei's implosion coming, to which I responded that it was the speed that was surprising, not the fact it happened. From the beginning, no one even in her own family wants Cersei in power; not Tywin, not Tyrion, not Kevan, etc. Throughout AFFC, Jaime sees her actions becoming less and less reasonable as well; he even goes out of his way to rebuke her.

In this particular quote, the relevant aspect is that LF thinks Cersei's a terrible leader as well, which was the point I was trying to make all along. The only thing that kept her from starting down that path was the fact she had the Tyrells in the city and couldn't act with them there. Perhaps unwittingly, Jaime's suggestion gives her the 'breathing space' to act without restraint.

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