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Xray the Enforcer

[ADWD SPOILERS] The Griffin Reborn

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I really like Jon Connington. He's my favorite "one off" POV from AFFC/ADWD. He's interesting as a POV because he's a non-evil version of Tywin Lannister, who's always been one of my favorite characters to read about. Although, if George goes back to regular character names for chapters after ADWD it might get a bit funny with two Jons spelled the exact same way. :)

ETA: Also, completely random and hair brained but did anyone else pick up a similarity with Jon's situation to Dumbledore's? A gay man with an unrequited love interest in his best friend from his youth, slowly dying of a malady creeping up his hand while mentoring an important figure in their world? Call me crazy but the similarity is uncanny.

One thing I also just thought of: in the chapter Jon thinks "and they smashed Aegon's head against the wall." Now he could be thinking in terms of what the other Storm lords believe or he could be thinking quite literally. Is it still possible that Aegon is a pretender, and may not even realize it himself? Sure he has the right hair and eyes but, as we've seen, so do half the whores in Lys and Volantis. :P And so did Ashara Dayne. He could have been picked up from anywhere with the right genes as a baby and told he was the lost king of Westeros. I could see Varys and Illyrio doing something like this to garner more support for the Targ cause and maybe as a way of prompting Dany to go north with the dragons and fight the Others rather than playing the game of thrones (or maybe he realized that Viserys was clearly as batshit insane as his father and wanted a sane "Targ" on the throne). I think the true test will be when we see how he reacts to a hot bath: both Dany and Egg love hot baths that scald others non-Targs. There's also mention of Targs not getting diseases and Jon seems paranoid that his greyscale may spread to Aegon, so if this happens, again, I think we have a pretender on our hands and Jon knows it (but I think Aegon acts enough like an entitled brat to indicate that he himself believes he's the real Aegon).

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I really like Jon Connington. He's my favorite "one off" POV from AFFC/ADWD. He's interesting as a POV because he's a non-evil version of Tywin Lannister, who's always been one of my favorite characters to read about. Although, if George goes back to regular character names for chapters after ADWD it might get a bit funny with two Jons spelled the exact same way. :)

ETA: Also, completely random and hair brained but did anyone else pick up a similarity with Jon's situation to Dumbledore's? A gay man with an unrequited love interest in his best friend from his youth, slowly dying of a malady creeping up his hand while mentoring an important figure in their world? Call me crazy but the similarity is uncanny.

One thing I also just thought of: in the chapter Jon thinks "and they smashed Aegon's head against the wall." Now he could be thinking in terms of what the other Storm lords believe or he could be thinking quite literally. Is it still possible that Aegon is a pretender, and may not even realize it himself? Sure he has the right hair and eyes but, as we've seen, so do half the whores in Lys and Volantis. :P And so did Ashara Dayne. He could have been picked up from anywhere with the right genes as a baby and told he was the lost king of Westeros. I could see Varys and Illyrio doing something like this to garner more support for the Targ cause and maybe as a way of prompting Dany to go north with the dragons and fight the Others rather than playing the game of thrones (or maybe he realized that Viserys was clearly as batshit insane as his father and wanted a sane "Targ" on the throne). I think the true test will be when we see how he reacts to a hot bath: both Dany and Egg love hot baths that scald others non-Targs. There's also mention of Targs not getting diseases and Jon seems paranoid that his greyscale may spread to Aegon, so if this happens, again, I think we have a pretender on our hands and Jon knows it (but I think Aegon acts enough like an entitled brat to indicate that he himself believes he's the real Aegon).

If I remember correctly Dany just didnt learn her hitory lesson about the Targ's not getting diseases, there was some big tragedy where because of sickness a bunch of Targs died. It is sort of the same thinking that Quentyn, Rhaegar, Dany, Viserys (it was Vys who told her that) and the rest of the Targ have, I am the blood of the dragon so I will succeed and I will triumph, and the blood of the dragon cannot be defeated by some lowly disease for the mortals. But history proves different.

About Aegon, to me it seems that Illyro and Varys want him, and support him ending up in the Iron Throne. Just think about it he was sheltered educated etc.... while Dany and Vyseris had to run around, and even though they were for a short time in illiros house, he didnt even try to teach them about gowerning, history and the rest. they are pretty much uneducated. It is not him who they see as a support for Dany, but they wanted Dany as a support for him.

And if he is not a real Targ? I think it would be even better, at least better for the realm. The Targs have the infamous Mad DNA, to put a real Targ on the Iron Throne would be too much of a gamble. And if Varys meant that he wants the best for Westeros, and the best for the realm, I think it would make more sense to find a silver haired, purple eyed boy, and educate him from his young age, about history, religion, culture of Westeros, and of course fighting.

What would be best for the Realm on the long run would be a Targ who is not a Targ. And that could be Aegon/YG.

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Well, Aegon's already getting on my nerves. Absolutely love Connington as both a character and a PoV, though.

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So yeah, this chapter made it rather clear that Jon Connington liked Rhaegar more than a friend. (One part that stuck with me was his reminiscing about how he'd only taken Rhaegar up once to view his lands. Like it was a favored place that he wanted to spend a lot of time with his favored person).

Before it's kind of felt like Robert was the "right" side in the rebellion, but with this new POV I could clearly see it from both sides.

It's a darn shame about that greyscale. I echo that he should just cut off those fingers...

(I do wonder if greyscale will become a bigger plot point, what with Val's(?) reaction to Stannis daughter. What if the Westeros maesters are wrong and greyscale is a worse...and more infectious malady than they think?)

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Very good chapter. I have a feeling Aegon is not going to succeed with Storm's End. Bad idea to have him lead the attack.

As for Connington, he is obviously a gay character and apparently so was Rhaegar.

Is it possible that Connington is Jon's true father with Lyanna Stark?

This chapter made me start to rethink my stand on the R+L=J. I still don't see it 100%.

We need to find out who Wylla was or that fisherman's daughter who said Ned get her pregnant and had Jon Snow.

WE NEED HOWLAND REED!!!! Or we need Bran to find it out while going into the past to follow his father.

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Am I the only one thinking Jon Connington had.. um... feelings for Rhaegar? Or is it normal for him to think about Rhaegar's eyes, Rhaegar's silvery hair in the wind, and how he wanted Rhaegar's love?

Omg I thought that too! It was very subtle, but it was there. What also made me think this was the stuff Selmy told Dany in ASOS

Also, did anyone feel like this was really late in the book to introduce a new POV? It kind of came out of nowhere...I mean, yea we were introduced to him through Tyrion's POV, but still.

And I'm still having a hard time excepting "Young Griff"...he just kind of popped up out of no where in the grand scheme of things. Tyrion just "figures it out" ....I don't know. I will be skeptical if he's really who he says he is or not. BUT given the feelings Jon seems to have had for Rhaegar, it could be true...

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Love Jon Connington as a character, although I'm slightly unsure about Aegon now- seems like he's gonna get quite arrogant quite quickly, unfortunately.

Yes, that was the only negative bit of information in this otherwise brilliant chapter. I dread the comparison, but he sounded almost Joffrey-esque in his presumptive arrogance, and in his own highly inflated sense of his self-worth. Still, old Joff was a murderous sociopath and Aegon hasn't given any indication of that... yet. A note of caution though - Aegon's own grandfather started off as a 'normal' guy...! :shocked:

one thing that confuses me... why jon is not worried about Aegon catching greyscale???

greyscale its not that contagious in the beggining? did i miss that explanation?

This whole greyscale thing seems a bit 'hit and miss'. As does flux, for that matter.

Tyrion seems immune to both. Others, far stronger and healthier than him, are not so lucky.

Seems like a reasonable suggestion to me, after they're done killing the small force that Mace left.

Yes, and that would be their 'in' - when the garrison holding Storms' End sees Griff killing off the Tyrell force, they'll probably open the gates for them, thinking them to be on their side...

And when he borached the subject of Aegon's marriage, my immediate thought was Margaery Targaryen has a nice ring to it. She's been married three times without consummation - fourth time lucky?

Wasn't it consummated with Renly though? Why else would she ask Paecelle for the Moon Tea?

Good insights into the past, which is always nice. I like hearing about Rhaegar, and the mention on how Tywin would have handled things speaks volumes.

Its got to be intentionally ambiguous here too about his name being Jon. Is it Ned naming his bastard after Jon Arryn, or Rhaegar after his best friend?

Although the longer the series goes on the more I wouldn't be shocked if Jon's parentage is never even fully revealed.

The Tywin reference was very instructive. Yes, he was cruel and murderous, but he also knew how to rule; how to build and sustain a kingdom. Seems he was one of the few who did; from those alive, perhaps Jon Snow and Tyrion are the only others who have thus far given evidence that they know how to 'rule' by anything other than vacuous sentiment or self-indulgence.

I also agree with the Jon parentage point; would not surprise me if that is never revealed, since all the people who knew of it are dead or dying (assuming Lyanna is indeed dead)!

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I wasn't 100% sure if Connington was gay or was remembering those details about Rhaegar in light of Young Griff's features, implicitly wondering if he was in fact the real thing. I remember someone in the chapter says something about him marrying, and he thinks about how no one would want to marry him on account of the grayscale or some other thing. I was expecting him to think about his disinterest in women, but maybe that's subconscious where he is concerned. I don't think 'gay' is an official category for the characters in Westeros.

The greyscale...I want him to just hack off the fingers/hand and be done with it because I like the character. But George is going to get plenty of dramatic mileage out of his vanity and impending doom, so he won't do it. He could have pulled a Davos earlier in the narrative, though, and it wouldn't have been much different for him. He'd need gloves either way. Maybe the biggest surprise would be to see him survive it, like Shireen. (Am I right in thinking it is no longer active in her?)

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I hope and believe that (a) Aegon is a pretender; (B) he wins the Iron Throne with or without Dany; and ©, he turns out to be a great king. :)

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Why doesn't he just cut the offending fingers off? Seriously.

Loved it when Haldon was suggesting he take a wife to cement Aegon's claim and gain allies and he looks at him coolly and just says 'I think not'. Seems a very definite, stubborn lord.

One thing I also just thought of: in the chapter Jon thinks "and they smashed Aegon's head against the wall." Now he could be thinking in terms of what the other Storm lords believe or he could be thinking quite literally. Is it still possible that Aegon is a pretender, and may not even realize it himself? Sure he has the right hair and eyes but, as we've seen, so do half the whores in Lys and Volantis. :P

Yes good pick up.

He also made a comment to himself when he was thinking on Rhaegar, saying his eyes were very violet, more purple than 'this boy's' - probably nothing, but interesting how he said this boy instead of his boy, or his son.

It's a darn shame about that greyscale. I echo that he should just cut off those fingers...

(I do wonder if greyscale will become a bigger plot point, what with Val's(?) reaction to Stannis daughter. What if the Westeros maesters are wrong and greyscale is a worse...and more infectious malady than they think?)

I know, I think it very well may become a bigger plot point. Terrifying in a way.. it may catch most everyone unawares.

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Mhm, I am also concerned if it will really be a good idea to let Aegon lead the attack on Storm's End. Storm's End is no joke and then a green boy like him trying to prove himself at a keep like this. I mean I can see the meaning of him being in charge as future king, but I fear he might mess things up. I like the plan someone has suggested here with beating the small Tyrell host and then sacking Storm's End with pretending to be sellswords hired by Stannis. It's the only way I see how to win Storm's End in a short time anyway.

I am really interested now what Doran will do. Would he believe that Aegon would still be alive? Will he screw up his old plans so far and join the war? He already sent the Sand Snakes to King's Landing I think (and I am not so sure if he would abandon the daughters of his brother). He can speculate that Quentyn will soon come back with Dany and can join Aegon's cause to clean the way.

Ah really interesting situation there, I like Connington, he actually gets the shit done.

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Seriously! I really don't get his viewpoint of "oh, I'll be seen as less of a man if I cut off my fingers"...yes, but you will be ALIVE. So that all works out IMO!

I didn't get that was the reason he wouldn't cut them off. It seemed that he knew that the men wouldn't follow him, that they'd cut and run at the thought of catching greyscale was why he wouldn't cut them off. He has a job to do, and that job is leading these men into battle so that he can put Rheager's "son" on the throne. He feels like he let him down once and refuses to do it again.

At the beginning I really wanted Aegon to be a fake, but now I'm hoping he's the real deal.

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I didn't get that was the reason he wouldn't cut them off. It seemed that he knew that the men wouldn't follow him, that they'd cut and run at the thought of catching greyscale was why he wouldn't cut them off. He has a job to do, and that job is leading these men into battle so that he can put Rheager's "son" on the throne. He feels like he let him down once and refuses to do it again.

At the beginning I really wanted Aegon to be a fake, but now I'm hoping he's the real deal.

It seemed obvious to me. People are hysterically (maybe for good reason) afraid of greyscale. Even if he cuts his fingers off or his hand or his whole arm, he will be quarantined, isolated from everyone (especially Aegon), maybe sent away permanently. For now, he can hide his greyscale with a glove. And since it is spread by contact, if he keeps it covered he is golden. It seems really risky but he seems to think he won't spread it to anyone else if he keeps it carefully covered. As soon as someone finds out, he will be sent away to that horrible leper island on the river and he won't be able to finish his entire life purpose: putting Aegon on the throne. This is the climax of his life's work. He is probably thinking to hide it a little longer till his job is done and then go out in a blaze of glory, dying with honor and vengeance.

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It's not just you. GRRM confirmed it at his NYC signing. There's a thread about it in the ADWD big forum, but tread lightly there (in the bigger forum, not that thread), as there are many spoilers if you're not done reading.

Um what? Confirmed what? That Jon Connington is gay?

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Seriously! I really don't get his viewpoint of "oh, I'll be seen as less of a man if I cut off my fingers"...yes, but you will be ALIVE. So that all works out IMO!

I personally don't think its like that, i mean it would be hard to explain why all of a sudden he doesn't have any finger left in a hand( i think most nails were black already) and once its known he'll be shunn, however i do hope that in some future battle someone hacks his hand off...

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Am I the only one thinking Jon Connington had.. um... feelings for Rhaegar? Or is it normal for him to think about Rhaegar's eyes, Rhaegar's silvery hair in the wind, and how he wanted Rhaegar's love?

I understood just like you. Many sentences made me feel that way...

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