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kyleM

The Knight of the Laughing Tree

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[quote name='DocBean' post='1353229' date='May 13 2008, 17.45']It's not dishonorable to win by net and spear. All's fair in love and War, in this case Love cause the war, and Arthur had to die.

Someone said they thought that Howland and Ned may have killed The Sword of the Morning first, but with those type of odds you have to think that the Sword of the Morning took some people out, and he was the only one left against Ned and Howland.[/quote]
You probably mean me but got it wrong. All I´m saying is that Howland saving Ned tells us nothing but that Ned would have died if not for Howland. Howland saves Ned=/=Arthur dies.

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[quote name='DocBean' post='1353229' date='May 13 2008, 09.45']It's not dishonorable to win by net and spear. All's fair in love and War, in this case Love cause the war, and Arthur had to die.

Someone said they thought that Howland and Ned may have killed The Sword of the Morning first, but with those type of odds you have to think that the Sword of the Morning took some people out, and he was the only one left against Ned and Howland.[/quote]

I'm not saying Howland Reed did anything dishonorable or that Ned even perceived the act as such (though Ned certainly seems the type who would disagree with you on "all's fair..."), just that it's not the way one would want to see such a great and respected knight go down if you had to choose a way. Seriously, being in the midst of battle and suddenly becoming tangled in a net? Perhaps falling to the ground, unable to strike or get back onto your feet? Ned has a sense of respect for the men he fought that day.

I'm making sense here, right?

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My impression was that, as Dayne came in for the killing blow, Howland stepped in between Ned and Dayne and used some kind of magic . . . that either killed Dayne or disoriented him enough for Ned to recover and strike him down.

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Where are you guys getting all these battle details about the tower of joy? All I remember is in AGOT Ned says his 7 met their 3, their were some (badass) words. Then just as they are about to fight Ned wakes up. Then the next thing we here about it Ned is saying how Howland Reed and himself were the only two survivors. Then he tears down the tower and makes 8 cairns (i imagine thats some sort of grave) for the slain. I dont remember reading anything else about the battle and certainly nothing near the level of detail I'm reading in these posts. Did I miss something?

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[quote name='kyleM' post='1354076' date='May 13 2008, 18.35']Where are you guys getting all these battle details about the tower of joy? All I remember is in AGOT Ned says his 7 met their 3, their were some (badass) words. Then just as they are about to fight Ned wakes up. Then the next thing we here about it Ned is saying how Howland Reed and himself were the only two survivors. Then he tears down the tower and makes 8 cairns (i imagine thats some sort of grave) for the slain. I dont remember reading anything else about the battle and certainly nothing near the level of detail I'm reading in these posts. Did I miss something?[/quote]

There's a chapter where Bran recalls Ned sadly talking about Arthur Dayne being the finest swordsman he'd ever known, and how Dayne would have killed Ned if it weren't for the intervention of Howland Reed. Since Howland is clearly not a swordsman on par with Arthur Dayne, some people (like me) think that maybe magic was involved. Or a net. Or both.
Personally, I like to think that Dayne was so badass as a warrior that he couldn't have been subdued by anything physical like a net (even if he was facing Ned and Howland approached from behind or something; besides I'm sure Dayne was used to fighting 2 opponents at the same time). Only a completely unexpected thing like magic that suddenly popped in his face (and blinded or immobilized him, giving Ned an opening) could have brought him down . . . but that's just wishful thinking really, I don't have any evidence that it was magic.

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Why cant it simply be that Howland stepped in between Dayne and his friend and lord?

Dayne sees this scrawny little man with a spear and net and just stops, maybe has a bit of a laugh to himself at this skinny little thing and that gives Ned the time to recover.

I know, not as exciting or heroic but possible.

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Yeah, I don't think there was magic involved, this is GRRM, Magic isn't wielded like a weapon in this series.
I think more likely Howland used net and spear, or maybe took a blow for Ned, but until we see him we probably won't know what happened.

It would be interesting if when we meet Howland, if he has a wooden leg or something. That would lead to all sorts of Theories.

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[quote name='DocBean' post='1354912' date='May 14 2008, 10.09']Yeah, I don't think there was magic involved, this is GRRM, Magic isn't wielded like a weapon in this series.
I think more likely Howland used net and spear, or maybe took a blow for Ned, but until we see him we probably won't know what happened.

It would be interesting if when we meet Howland, if he has a wooden leg or something. That would lead to all sorts of Theories.[/quote]


I can't help myself... a view into the future of these boards:
---> "what if Howland didn't really lose his leg from an alligator like he told Jon!? What if he stepped in front of the Sword of the Mornings killing blow aimed at Ned's head and lost his leg that way! Ned then lunged forward from his hands and legs and slid Ice up under the Ribs and into the Heart of the Sword of the Morning! - it's very likely that's what happened."

can't wait for that post.

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[quote name='DocBean' post='1354912' date='May 14 2008, 11.09']Yeah, I don't think there was magic involved, this is GRRM, Magic isn't wielded like a weapon in this series.
I think more likely Howland used net and spear, or maybe took a blow for Ned, but until we see him we probably won't know what happened.

It would be interesting if when we meet Howland, if he has a wooden leg or something. That would lead to all sorts of Theories.[/quote]

Well, I had always regarded Children of the Forest's magic to be really subtle, like maybe creating minor illusions or inducing some dizziness (and of course, enlisting the help of ravens and other animals) - definitely no boulder-sized fireballs or ice storms and the like (though we know that with united effort that could do some spectacular stuff, like destroying the Arm of Dorne). Positively useless against an army of invading First Men, but I can see how it might be useful on a small-scale encounter like the battle at ToJ.
We've definitely seen other examples of "magic" being used throughout the books - for instance, Mirri Mazz Dur's ritual dagger that appeared out of thin air, Melisandre's immunity to poison and her blowing up an eagle in flames. But I agree that in general, magic isn't wielded like a weapon in the series.

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[quote name='Jimbeezee' post='1355042' date='May 14 2008, 11.45']Well, I had always regarded Children of the Forest's magic to be really subtle, like maybe creating minor illusions or inducing some dizziness (and of course, enlisting the help of ravens and other animals) - definitely no boulder-sized fireballs or ice storms and the like (though we know that with united effort that could do some spectacular stuff, like destroying the Arm of Dorne). Positively useless against an army of invading First Men, but I can see how it might be useful on a small-scale encounter like the battle at ToJ.
We've definitely seen other examples of "magic" being used throughout the books - for instance, Mirri Mazz Dur's ritual dagger that appeared out of thin air, Melisandre's immunity to poison and her blowing up an eagle in flames. But I agree that in general, magic isn't wielded like a weapon in the series.[/quote]

"The Horn Lord once said, 'Sorcery is like a sword without a hilt; there is no safe way to grasp it.'" - Mance Ryder's wife Dalla.
We don't know what Melisandre has done for her power, what sacrifice she's givin up, but the only example we've seen of Magic being weilded as a weapon is when she burns the Eagle in the sky.

I don't think Howland used magic.
Perhaps Howland used some sort of Warging ability, but I doubt it. I think it was more simple then that.

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[quote name='DocBean' post='1355078' date='May 14 2008, 11.15']"The Horn Lord once said, 'Sorcery is like a sword without a hilt; there is no safe way to grasp it.'" - Mance Ryder's wife Dalla.
We don't know what Melisandre has done for her power, what sacrifice she's givin up, but the only example we've seen of Magic being weilded as a weapon is when she burns the Eagle in the sky.[/quote]
I love that quote! It's almost as good as the one about prophecy "biting your dick off!" And, actually, Mel birthing the shadows and sending them out to kill was using magic as a weapon, too. Also, warging with some creature and using it to attack is using magic as a weapon. There have actually been numerous examples of magic being used as a weapon throughout the series. Martin is much better than most at keeping it subtle, though ;)
[quote name='DocBean' post='1355078' date='May 14 2008, 11.15']I don't think Howland used magic.
Perhaps Howland used some sort of Warging ability, but I doubt it. I think it was more simple then that.[/quote]
I'm noncommital when it comes to this. You see, Howland need not have come up with some grand magical or martial feat to help Ned in his fight with Arthur Dayne. All he had to do was distract or otherwise hinder Arthur just long enough for Ned to land a good blow. It could have been something as simple as making him defend for a moment against an arrow or thrown spear or tripping him with a net or whatever. Also, it could have been something as "harmless" as Reed warging with a nearby bird or small animal and making it attack Arthur's eyes or trip him or whatever.

Under any of these scenarios, Ned could have gotten just the reprieve he needed to land a good blow and one good blow may be all that is needed to win a fight. Let's not forget that Ned, while no Sword of the Morning, was probably no slouch in combat either.

This is a little off topic, but while I am thinking about this I wonder if Ned had the greatsword Ice with him at the ToJ? If so, that would make the battle that much easier for him (i.e. one good blow would [i]really[/i] be all that was needed). However, if Ned had Ice then how and when did he get it? One would think that Ice went with Rickard to KL and, if so, then I guess it would be plausible that Ned retrieved his family's Valyrian steel greatsword immediately after the sack of KL. That would also mean that Ned went through the Rebellion with a "normal" sword and gives more creedence to the idea that Ned was at least a competent swordsman himself.

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[quote name='Prince of the North' post='1355204' date='May 14 2008, 13.17']This is a little off topic, but while I am thinking about this I wonder if Ned had the greatsword Ice with him at the ToJ? If so, that would make the battle that much easier for him (i.e. one good blow would [i]really[/i] be all that was needed). However, if Ned had Ice then how and when did he get it? One would think that Ice went with Rickard to KL and, if so, then I guess it would be plausible that Ned retrieved his family's Valyrian steel greatsword immediately after the sack of KL. That would also mean that Ned went through the Rebellion with a "normal" sword and gives more creedence to the idea that Ned was at least a competent swordsman himself.[/quote]


I never thought about that. I always just assumed Ned wielded Ice.
I think you're probably right, I would think Rickard would carry it, unless he had handed it down to Brandon already, but one of them should have had it.

I'm trying to remember how it all went down. Was Rickard the one that was burned, while Brandon died choking himself?
I would think if Rickard went asking for his daughter, he'd probably bring Ice with him, unless he thought that would be too threatening to the Mad King.
That's the only reason I could think of for him to leave the sword behind. In which case Ned would have claimed it when he went to war.

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[quote name='DocBean' post='1355338' date='May 14 2008, 15.20']I never thought about that. I always just assumed Ned wielded Ice.
I think you're probably right, I would think Rickard would carry it, unless he had handed it down to Brandon already, but one of them should have had it.

I'm trying to remember how it all went down. Was Rickard the one that was burned, while Brandon died choking himself?
I would think if Rickard went asking for his daughter, he'd probably bring Ice with him, unless he thought that would be too threatening to the Mad King.
That's the only reason I could think of for him to leave the sword behind. In which case Ned would have claimed it when he went to war.[/quote]
Yeah, I guess I don't think Rickard had handed Ice down to Brandon already because, after all, it seems to sort of go with being the head of House Stark. Also, Rickard was very likely still able to wield it. He would have probably only been in his 40s when he was killed. His oldest child, Brandon, was not yet 20.

You're right, Rickard was slowly roasted in his armor while Brandon strangled himself trying to free him (nice, huh?!)

I also don't think Rickard would have left the sword behind. I mean, why? Doesn't almost every nobleman in their culture wear a sword? Isn't that one of the many reasons why the king is attended by KG at all times? I guess for now I think Rickard brought Ice with him and Ned fought the Rebellion with a regular ol' sword and obtained Ice only after the sack of KL :dunno:

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[quote name='Prince of the North' post='1355398' date='May 14 2008, 16.02']He would have probably only been in his 40s when he was killed. His oldest child, Brandon, was not yet 20.[/quote]
Definitely at least 20! He was 20 when he fought Littlefinger. /nitpick

Ned surviving the Rebellion without Ice doesn't necessarily mean that he was any sort of great swordsman. I imagine plenty of men of varying skills survived regardless. Though it's true that Ned might have been more of a target, much like Robb was specifically targeted by Jaime Lannister in battle, he'd similarly possibly have a guard ensuring his survival. The best man winning happens more in controlled environments like tournaments but I think in war things are so much more chancy and multivariable. So yeah Ned was maybe at least a competent swordsman, but not necessarily anything more. Sansa recalls Bronze Yohn soundly defeating him at swordplay at Winterfell, and of course GRRM has said that Brandon was the swordsman of the family, Ned's forte was strategy.

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[quote name='Prince of the North' post='1355204' date='May 14 2008, 14.17']I love that quote! It's almost as good as the one about prophecy "biting your dick off!" And, actually, Mel birthing the shadows and sending them out to kill was using magic as a weapon, too. Also, warging with some creature and using it to attack is using magic as a weapon. There have actually been numerous examples of magic being used as a weapon throughout the series. Martin is much better than most at keeping it subtle, though ;[/quote]
I'm with you. As I recall, GRRM is on record stating that even a very good swordsman is at a disadvantage when facing more than one opponent. If the fight had devolved to Stark and Reed vs. Dayne, they had the advantage. While he was a great knight, both of them were trained to fight- that's the lot of nobles in a society like that of Westeros. Reed's act of saving Stark need not have involved any magic or warging. Just a timely spear thrust.

Personally, I'd prefer it that way. Warging is wonderful in moderation.

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[quote name='Prince of the North' post='1355204' date='May 14 2008, 21.17']I'm noncommital when it comes to this. You see, Howland need not have come up with some grand magical or martial feat to help Ned in his fight with Arthur Dayne. All he had to do was distract or otherwise hinder Arthur just long enough for Ned to land a good blow. It could have been something as simple as making him defend for a moment against an arrow or thrown spear or tripping him with a net or whatever. Also, it could have been something as "harmless" as Reed warging with a nearby bird or small animal and making it attack Arthur's eyes or trip him or whatever.

Under any of these scenarios, Ned could have gotten just the reprieve he needed to land a good blow and one good blow may be all that is needed to win a fight. Let's not forget that Ned, while no Sword of the Morning, was probably no slouch in combat either.[/quote]
Once again Howland saving Ned =/= Arthur dies. :tantrum: The fight could have just continued after it.

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I don't believe it's been mentioned but the actual quotation is :

[i]"They called him the Sword of the Morning, and he would have killed me but for Howland Reed." Father had gone sad then, and he would say no more. Bran wished he had asked him what he meant.[/i]

-Poobs

Edit : added alittle more to the quotation.

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[quote name='DocBean' post='1354912' date='May 14 2008, 17.09']Yeah, I don't think there was magic involved, this is GRRM, Magic isn't wielded like a weapon in this series.[/quote]
But we have textual evidence! We [i]know[/i] that wargs can control people. Even un-educated wargs like Bran, who is (without training) so good that he can puppeteer Hodor! "This is GRRM", as you say, and "in this series" we have people-control.

If Bran can do that, why shouldn't Howland Reed (who spent a winter at the Isle of Faces for crying out loud!) be able to warg into Ser Arthur? Maybe not turn him into a puppet (Arthur isn't Hodor), but just make him miss a parry?

If I were are warg, that's what I would do. All the time. Except of course for the enormous risk of having my host killed while I warg him, which might harm me. So I'd use this power only if (say) my best friend were about to be killed.

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[quote name='Happy Ent' post='1356159' date='May 15 2008, 15.17']But we have textual evidence! We [i]know[/i] that wargs can control people. Even un-educated wargs like Bran, who is (without training) so good that he can puppeteer Hodor! "This is GRRM", as you say, and "in this series" we have people-control.[/quote]

Sure, but we also have textual evidence that the crannogmen use poisoned arrows. Not as glamorous, but it's just as possible.

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we also don't have textual evidence that Howland Reed can warg. I think he probably can, but consider:

neither Jojen nor Meera have warg'd yet.
the ability to warg is considered special; to have the greensight may not be something that can be learned.

one of the strengths of the series is that magic is not used when other, simpler explanations are easily available. Howland Reed need not have used magic.

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