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Jon Targaryen

[Pre-ADwD Spoilers] Daenerys 2 - Spoilers for ADWD

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The chapter opens with Dany watching dancers in Mereen. Her thoughts drift to Daario and she thinks of how silly it is that she is jealous of his sword hilts, which are wrought of gold in the shapes of naked women. She sees Xaro Xhoan Daxos and thinks that she must speak with him about the thirteen ships he arrived in port with, as they may be the answers to her prayers.

Dany speaks with Xaro following the dance. He flatters her by telling her that he saw a child leave Qarth and sees now a Queen of an ancient city. The flattery doesn't sway her and her mind stays on acquring his thirteen ships.

Dany remembers the stories of Astapor and Yunkai being the linchpins of the slave trade in years past, after dragonfire had turned the lands into a desert following the war that Ghis brought to old Valyria. Xaro tells Dany that he knows of the Sons of the Harpy and their bounty on Dany's head. He has seen the blood drawn on the stone roads and walls. Xaro calls the Sons of the Harpy craven and speaks with Dany about the protection she has in Mereen. She names her bloodriders and Ser Barristan the Bold, who saved her twice from assassins. Xaro repeats Selmy's name, calling him "Barristan the Old" and tells Dany that Ser Jorah was a more fitting servant, younger and in better shape. Dany tells Xaro that she doesn't wish to speak of Jorah Mormont.

They speak of love. Xaro tells Dany that she needs to wed, and she agrees. Xaro offers himself, shedding a Qarthian crocodile tear, and Dany throws a cherry at him, not buying what he has for sale. She tells him that he showed more interest in the dancers than her. They go on to argue about the validity of the slave trade and Xaro tells her that things which may seem evil may be good. Xaro sees laborers that Dany has, such as a ditch-digger, as slaves. Dany explains that they are compensated and Xaro laughs it off, saying that there are no slaves in Mereen (though clearly meaning that this man is a slave, even if he is paid). As they walk, Xaro is made nervous by the fact that Ser Barristan follows them. Dany dismisses it, saying that he is an old knight and loyal.

Xaro continues pressing Dany about her abolition of the slave trade by saying that Mereen was rich but is now poor, was fed but is now starving and was peaceful, but is now bloody. This stings Dany. She promises to return Mereen to its station of greatness, but Xaro does not think this will happen. He goes on to tell her that battle was joined at the Horns of Hazzat and that the Butcher King has fled back to his palace with the new Unsullied running at his heels. Xaro tells her that the Wise Masters have hired legions of sellswords. He ensures her that while she seiges Yunkai, Mereen will fall behind her. Xaro tells Dany that she has many enemies, some in her own court. Dany thinks about the three betrayals. Dany lists her armies, the sellswords, the Second Sons, and the Stormcrows. She adds that she has dragons.

"Do you?" Xaro asks her. Dany thinks of Hazzea, the little girl killed by Drogon, and wonders what whispers have leaked from her court. Dany leads the conversation away from blood and fire and Xaro tells her of a gift he is to offer her. Dany follows, suspicious.

Xaro offers Dany the thirteen gallies in his fleet in exchange not for dragons, but for her agreement to sail to Westeros at once. She asks him what would happen if she chooses to wait a year or two or three. Xaro replies that he fears she will not live as long. Dany tells him that the Yunkai'i are not as fierce as he thinks, and he tells her to beware her other enemies, including those with blue lips. Dany assures him that she left all the Warlocks with Xaro in Qarth. Xaro tells her that she never looked behind herself and that Pyat Pree dispatched warlocks to trail her. Dany tells him that she spent fourteen years running from knives and would not run any longer. She dismisses Xaro, telling him she will think on it. He offers to bed her, but she kindly refuses.

When Xaro is gone, Dany calls Ser Barristan to her side. She tells him a riddle that Viserys once told her. "Who listens to everything but hears nothing?" The answer is a knight of the kingsguard. She asks Ser Barristan what he thinks of Xaro's offer. He wants Dany to take the ships and sail to Westeros. Dany thinks of Ser Jorah and, despite his betrayal, wishes for his counsel as she believes Ser Barristan "too blunt and sensible." They discuss the logistics of setting sail with so few ships and how to contain the dragons.

After the discussion, she tells Ser Barristan to lead her to the pit. He questions her a moment, but she insists. They wind through the structures beneath the great pyramid of Mereen. They reach the pit and Barristan holds Dany back. She asks him if he thinks "they" will harm her. Barristan does not know, but would no sooner risk it to chance.

The molten eyes of Viserion and Rhaegal burn in the darkness. Charred bones are on the floor and the place smells of sulphur and sweats with heat. The two smaller dragons are chained in captivity in one of the fighting pits. Dany speaks to Barristan of the dragons, asking if they will ever stop growing, as they are larger than when she last saw them. He tells her that they will continue to grow with enough space and food. But chained in a pit...

Dany wonders if they will grow to hate her or each other, whether they will die if she keeps them captive for too long. Dany thinks about the dangers of dragons, about Harrenhal and how it fell, the Dance with Dragons, and how Aegon III saw his own mother consumed by one of the beasts. She thinks of the slaver's eyes melting in Astapor to Drogon's flames and realizes that her dragons fear no men. Dany thinks of Hazzea, the young girl that Drogon killed, and wonders whether the Sons of the Harpy staged her death to create animosity toward Dany and her rule. She thinks of Hazzea's father and how she paid the bloodprice and how Reznak demanded that she kill him, or at least tear out his tongue so that he would not talk. Dany refused to do so and sent him away, Reznak telling him that his daughter had been killed by a snakebite or taken in the night by ravening wolves, but for him to NEVER mention dragons.

Dany looks at Viserion and wonders how long before his fire can melt iron and crack stone. She remembers leading him into the pit by herself and shutting him inside with a store of oxen. After he gorged, they chained him. Rhaegal had been more difficult. She hypothesizes that he heard Viserion's struggles and that it made him more difficult to contain. Dany's men caught him basking in the sun and used a net of iron to drag him into the pit. Six men were burned in the struggle, and two badly.

And then Drogon...

The winged shadow, as Hazzea's father called him, enjoyed sunbathing on the Great Pyramid where the Harpy statue once stood. Dany's men had tried to take him three times, and three times they failed. Four men were cooked by Drogon's flames. She last saw him flying over the Dothraki sea and had not seen him since the last time they tried to capture him.

Dany thinks of her title, "mother of dragons," and wonders if "mother of monsters" is more appropriate. She despairs, thinking about what she may have unleashed on the world. She thinks that she is the blood of the dragon, and that if her children are monsters, then so is she.

She looks at Ser Barristan and tells him that she told Xaro that she feared only one thing, though she would not tell the merchant what. Ser Barristan guesses that she only fears her dragons.

"Myself," Dany tells him.

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I am beginning to beleive that Dany needs not only to learn how to rule, but how to "control" her dragons. My crack-pot theory is that Aemon and Tyrion come to teach her how to control her dragons, and that Jon and Bran actually learn how to Warg into Viserion and Rhaegal

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I think warging into dragons is out for now, but might eventually come into play. Tyrion is definitely up for the dragon training job (and is urgently needed). AFFC has a bearing on other aspects of your theory.

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I've been wondering for a while if warging dragons wasn't a Targaryen speciality, even to the extent that Dany may have (subconciously) used warging in some way to hatch them.

She would of course, still need an instructor - maybe Euron's horn will provide a false salvation for her ... and there's an open question of how effective it would be anyway, given that it killed the last person to use it...

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George released three Dany chapters in a little booklet at a publishing convention. a Davos chapter was released to fans in appreciation of a holiday gift. The others have been read at readings at conventions.

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Xaro repeats Selmy's name, calling him "Barristan the Old"

This doesn't seem right. The rhyming of "bold" and "old" is in the Common Tongue. I very much doubt that the joke makes sense in High Valyrian, the language they're speaking.

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Where are these chapters being found? Not just Dany's, but Jon's and Tyrion's. I have seen the first Dany chapter, but where is the 2nd one located? Martin still has the first up on his website.

Thanks.

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Here are some additions to this chapter from Jaehaerys from way back:

SUMMARY ADDITIONS (in order as given in chapter, my comments are in italics):

The dancers at the beginning of the chapter are male, have sleek shaved bodies and are covered with oil. They are dancing and are tossing lighted torches to each other. Whenever two torches cross in the air a naked girl leaps spinning in-between them. The male dancers are equal height, with chiseled muscles. Dany thinks it is strange that although even their faces look alike they are different ethnicity. With skins of ebony, copper and one pale (Quarth – milk man) skinned. (Aside: makes me wonder if ‘pale’ = Quarth, which would suggest the 3rd chapters’ Pale Mare to be a Quartheen Woman.)

Dany wonders if Xaro meant to inflame her with the dancers. She looks at the spectators. The Unsullied are expressionless statutes, Reznak’s mouth was open and watched with glistening lips, Hizdahr was watching the dancing girls while speaking to someone next to him, the Shavepate’s face was stern but missed nothing, and the Green Grace was engrossed. Dany wonders if she “dreams of her own youth, when she wore red robes in the garden of the Graces and welcomed strangers under the moonâ€. (Aside: I wonder if the Green Grace was once a red priestess?)

Dany is wearing a Quartheen gown which bears a breast and her hair has re-grown to almost reach her nipple. Xaros had arrived on the galleass Silken Cloud (plus the 13 ship gift). When the dance reaches its climax, Dany grows warm and thinks about Daario. She closes her eyes and pictures him standing before her, his hands resting on his matched arakh and stiletto, the gold hilts in the shape of naked women. When Daario took his leave, he had brushed the balls of his thumbs lightly across them back and forth repeatedly. Dany flushes when she realizes she is jealous of a sword hilt, of “women made of goldâ€. (Aside = I thought of Cersei at this point, or Genna, the women of the golden Lannisters. However, it would be very interesting if the golden company’s captain turned out to be a woman, especially if she was a Quartheen woman, in keeping with the 3rd chapters’ Pale Mare.)

Dany knew sending Daario away to the Lamb men was wise. That Dany was a queen and Daario “was not the stuff of kingsâ€.

Dany needs Xaros but does not trust him. Meeren and the slaver cities were where Dothraki khals and Basilisk Isle corsairs came to sell their captives and where the world brought slaves. The area’s other trade goods are few: copper was found in the Ghiscari hills, but the metal was less valuable now then when bronze ruled the world, Dragonfire and the Old Empire had logged all the coastal ceders which led to the soil blowing away.

Xaros has heard of Meerenese lords offering a hundred virgin slave girls to Dany’s slayer. He begs her to wed him again. Dany says she must marry, all agree: Hizdahr according to the Green Grace, Skahaz according to himself, Cleon of Astapor sends gifts, even Dany’s handmaidens agree.

They speak of slavery. Dany says its cruel, and mentions the Unsullied’s training. Xaros replies when a smith forges a sword, the blade is thrust into the fire, beats it with a hammer, and plunges it into iced water to temper the steel. (I instantly thought of the 3 greatest historical dynasties of Westeros: the Targaryen kings as the fire, the Baratheons, esp. Robert, as the hammer and the Starks, esp. the Kings of the North as the iced water. I also think it could refer to Jon as the steel, with Dany as the fire, a Baratheon, such as Stannis or Edric Storm or Gendry as the hammer, and Arya as the iced water.)

Xaros mentions all the dancers are Yunkai slaves. They began as soon as they could walk and are also expert in the erotic arts. Xaros says he met a friend when he arrived here. The man was a spice merchant but was digging a hole to irrigate a bean crop. He begged Xaros to buy him.

Dany and Xaros leave the feast, and walk up to Dany’s chambers. They pass 2 pairs of Unsullied guards. Xaros notices that Barristan follows them. (Aside: I thought Xaros was mentally sizing up how difficult it would be for an assassin to get into Dany’s chambers.)

They talk of trade. Ghiscari wine is swill, and Quarth gets all its salt from the sea. Xaros would buy olives and olive oil, but the slavers torched the olive groves before Dany’s attack and the trees take 7 years to start again bearing fruit. Dany asks about copper, Xaros says its fickle as a woman, but “gold is sincereâ€. That Quarth will buy slaves with gold.

Xaros says that Yunkai’s wise masters had hired 3 new sellsword companies for the Horns of Hazzat battle: The Long Lances, the Windblown and the Company of the Cat along with 2 legions from New Ghis. Yunkish envoys were seen in Myr and Volantis seeking to hire the Golden Company.

Dany recalls that Viserys had once feasted the captains of the Golden Company in hopes they would back him. They ate the food and listened and laughed.

Yunkai has its own fleet plus Meereen’s old fleet, New Ghis is sending 2 more legions and Tolos and Mantarys agreed to ally. Dany had sent envoys to Tolos and Mantarys but had not heard back from them.

A fortnight after Dany left Quarth, Pyat Pree went with 3 fellows to Pentos to avenge themselves and try to kill Dany. Dany laughs but Xaros says Pyat will eventually learn Dany is in Meereen.

Dany needs to see her dragons. Barristen leads her down the servants stair. The chained dragons are miserable and have grown. They are chained neck and feet to the wall and are below the pyramid in a dungeon made to hold 500. Dany stands on a balcony 40 feet from the floor, Barristen says no closer, and Dany wonders if they would harm her. She thinks of the destruction of the field of fire, of Aegon II who saw his mother eaten by a dragon. That they have no fear of men. Viserion tries to fly to her. Their eyes burn molten gold and bronze in the darkness and the wall is scorched. Dany worries about when their fire will grow hot enough to melt the iron and stone (like it did at Harrenhal) and if the dragons will stop growing soon because they are confined. She wonders what kind of mother she is for chaining her children in darkness. Viserion breaths fire on his chains to no avail. We learn that Drogon was last seen flying north toward the Dothraki sea.

(This section is beautifully written, its moving to hear the misery of these majestic dragons. No summary can do it justice.)

One last note: we hear the Targaryen words again.

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Aegon II who saw his mother eaten by a dragon.

It was Aegon III.

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Here are some additions to this chapter from Jaehaerys from way back:

SUMMARY ADDITIONS (in order as given in chapter, my comments are in italics):

Xaros says that Yunkai’s wise masters had hired 3 new sellsword companies for the Horns of Hazzat battle: The Long Lances, the Windblown and the Company of the Cat along with 2 legions from New Ghis. Yunkish envoys were seen in Myr and Volantis seeking to hire the Golden Company.

How much do we know about the Sellsword companies that exist n the Free Cities? how large are they? is the standard format 500 men like the Second sons with Dany?

Martin, I seem to recall, has stated that the Golden Company is the best and that the Brave Companions is/was the worst.

What I'm getting at is that 3 sellsword companies, 1500 men?, are not that much of a effective fighting force if you are going to reclaim Mereen and depose Dany. 3 sellsword companies + 2 legions= only 3500-4000 men. Thats not alot of men to storm a city like Meereen with.

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Some of them are up on GRRM's own site, althrough the only one I can find there is the first Tyrion chapter. But look in the threads for the individual chapters and you might find a link or two more. But for the rest, they have been read aloud by GRRM on Cons and such, so those who've been there have taken notes while listening and then put them up. There's really no way that they could put the whole chapters up. But I'm with you; it'll be awesome to read them in their intended form. I just hope it won't take too long before ADOD comes out.

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I just feel like this whole crush she has on Daario gets in the way. I hope it ends up bringing something to the table, but I'm not a fan at this point.

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Guest Other-in-law
A fortnight after Dany left Quarth, Pyat Pree went with 3 fellows to Pentos to avenge themselves and try to kill Dany. Dany laughs but Xaros says Pyat will eventually learn Dany is in Meereen.

Four warlocks in a boat? I have to wonder if poor Pyat Pree ended up being eaten by his fellows at the behest of one Euron Greyjoy.

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How much do we know about the Sellsword companies that exist n the Free Cities? how large are they? is the standard format 500 men like the Second sons with Dany?

Martin, I seem to recall, has stated that the Golden Company is the best and that the Brave Companions is/was the worst.

What I'm getting at is that 3 sellsword companies, 1500 men?, are not that much of a effective fighting force if you are going to reclaim Mereen and depose Dany. 3 sellsword companies + 2 legions= only 3500-4000 men. Thats not alot of men to storm a city like Meereen with.

The problem for Dany is internal revolt + unrest and external attack by hostile forces. If Meereen was entirely trustworthy there would be no problem with Dany holding off a much larger force.

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