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Rapsie

From Pawn to Player? Rereading Sansa II

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I'd like to see Sansa innocently observe LF as he reveals his entire web of plans and information network to her, then have her lead him off the precipice and take over his operations, using them for good. Has anyone played Mass Effect 2? It would be like Liara taking over the Shadowbroker.

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I don't know about other posters, but maybe we should define just what qualifies as "being a player in the Game of Thrones." Does it mean lying and deception? Does it mean secretly scheming to get your enemies killed? Does it mean using people who trust you? Do game players have any loyalty? Are they capable of love? Personally, I think Littlefinger is an expert game player, but I wouldn't want to see Sansa take on his morality.

I think this is an excellent point, especially given the title of this arc reread.

IMO the definition of pawn/player is going to differ enormously from character to character, given all their personal strengths, failings, position and allies/enemies. Sansa is in a somewhat fortunate position on the last, because her Lannister enemies are dropping like flies, and because LF has (I believe) enough leverage on the Tyrells to get them to go along with Sansa's innocence where Joff's murder was concerned. After all, the only one calling for her head was Mace, who was almost certainly not in on the Joff murder plot (his mother would have considered him too stupid and untrustworthy), and he can certainly be cowed into silence and/or agreement by his family. Much of the rest of Westeros, even those who fought against Robb, are likely now to see her as a tragic and sympathetic figure. And thanks to LF, slimy as he is, she is in a perfect position to become the lady of the Vale and the North.

If LF's plans succeed, or other events transpire to put Sansa in more of a position of player rather than pawn, what I would love to see from her is a characterization very like Queen Elizabeth I. Someone who does not meddle when it is not needed, but is not afraid to do what must be done to protect her subjects/smallfolk. Someone who sees reality as it is, but still has a hearty ability to enjoy life's pleasures when opportunity arises. Someone who can be the steel hand in the silk glove when required; who can charm your nethersocks off even while persuading you to come around to her way of thinking.

Towards this end, I am hoping Sansa will use the opportunity she has right now (a little free time to breathe while LF continues his everlasting plotting) to truly educate herself. She needs to learn the full history of her country, its various houses, regions, and customs. I hope she will take advantage of Randa to become more knowledgeable in the ways of the world, and how to take more advantage of her God-given gifts of beauty and charm. Best case scenario would be for her to maintain her ability to blush at a ribald story, while her mind is clicking away storing information about the story's teller.

I am also hoping she will lose the childish (and natural for a girl who is fatherless) tendency to see potential romance in every young man who goes google eyed and gushing over her beauty. Beauty is a wonderful gift and can be an extremely powerful one for a woman who wishes to be a player rather than a pawn. However, she MUST stop going google eyed and misty herself, amd realize several things: that good looking young men abound in plenty; that outer beauty in a man does not indicate squat about his character (something I am afraid she still has not really learned despite Joff, I think she sees him as an aberration); that her beauty is only a powerful weapon if she can learn to use it to inspire feelings and loyalties in OTHERS, while remaining emotionally detached herself. Being beautiful is fun and all. It is also a severely double edged sword if the woman does not realize that love of her beauty, and love of her, are two utterly different things. It is a hard lesson to learn but one she desperatelly needs to get a grasp on, especially before the Harry the Heir debacle commences.

So, for Sansa specifically, those are the areas in which I dearly hope to see her turn from pawn to player. If she were Brienne, I would have an entirely different set of goals for her to master, in order to turn from playee into player. For Sansa, I want her to learn how to preserve what is best while also protecting it and herself. Not an easy tightrope to walk, but I believe our girl is up to it.

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I am also hoping she will lose the childish (and natural for a girl who is fatherless) tendency to see potential romance in every young man who goes google eyed and gushing over her beauty. Beauty is a wonderful gift and can be an extremely powerful one for a woman who wishes to be a player rather than a pawn. However, she MUST stop going google eyed and misty herself, amd realize several things: that good looking young men abound in plenty; that outer beauty in a man does not indicate squat about his character (something I am afraid she still has not really learned despite Joff, I think she sees him as an aberration); that her beauty is only a powerful weapon if she can learn to use it to inspire feelings and loyalties in OTHERS, while remaining emotionally detached herself. Being beautiful is fun and all. It is also a severely double edged sword if the woman does not realize that love of her beauty, and love of her, are two utterly different things. It is a hard lesson to learn but one she desperatelly needs to get a grasp on, especially before the Harry the Heir debacle commences.

It'll be interesting to note, once we get to the proper chapter, how Sansa's perceptions of Joffrey's looks change when she realizes what a snake he is.

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Sansa is not the typical high school mean girl. In ASOIAF there are other women who could get under that stereotype. The only time i got a mean girl behaviour out of Sansa was not even in the books. It was on the show's first episode when Robert & his part arrive at Winterfell and Sophie is a little mean to Arya telling her to shut up, completley annoyed by her. But apart from that, Sansa is NOT a mean girl...

Cersei would be the one who wins the crown in this category.

Talking about Cersei, & i hope i make sense here: i know we don't get her point of view until the fourth book and then we clearly see that she fears the Maegi's prophecy and Margary becoming the more beauitful queen and stuff, but i would've like to read her views on Sansa on the 1st book regarding the prophecy. But do you girls think that the only thing that makes Margarey and Sansa diffrent to Cersei when they first meet her is that though both are rich beautiful girls engaged to her precious son, Sansa is more tractable and innocent than Margaery making her less of a threat in Cersei's eyes? And does having the Queen of Thorns as a grandmother helped in this..?

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Sansa is not the typical high school mean girl. In ASOIAF there are other women who could get under that stereotype. The only time i got a mean girl behaviour out of Sansa was not even in the books. It was on the show's first episode when Robert & his part arrive at Winterfell and Sophie is a little mean to Arya telling her to shut up, completley annoyed by her. But apart from that, Sansa is NOT a mean girl...

Cersei would be the one who wins the crown in this category.

Talking about Cersei, & i hope i make sense here: i know we don't get her point of view until the fourth book and then we clearly see that she fears the Maegi's prophecy and Margary becoming the more beauitful queen and stuff, but i would've like to read her views on Sansa on the 1st book regarding the prophecy. But do you girls think that the only thing that makes Margarey and Sansa diffrent to Cersei when they first meet her is that though both are rich beautiful girls engaged to her precious son, Sansa is more tractable and innocent than Margaery making her less of a threat in Cersei's eyes? And does having the Queen of Thorns as a grandmother helped in this..?

I don't think that was a mean streak as much as Sansa was following proper protocol, and trying to have Arya do the same.

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I don't think that was a mean streak as much as Sansa was following proper protocol, and trying to have Arya do the same.

oh i know, i totally agree with her in that scene since if i had been sansa, arya would've annoyed me as well- to behave like that before the king and his court! i only meant that sophie's acting in that particular scene is where i would say she acts a little meaner than in other scenes. but since she is my fav. actress in the show, to me she still did really good :)

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AGOT – Sansa V

Summary

The fifth chapter opens and Sansa is a prisoner. Her new status is not unknown to her, even though Cersei calls her captors “honor guards for my daughter to be.” Sansa notes ruefully that there isn’t anywhere she could go, even if she wanted to, and restricts her activities to walking in the yard, picking flowers and going to the sept and the godswood to pray for her father.

It is the first day of Joffrey’s court session, and Sansa has come there to beg mercy for Ned. As she enters the chamber, she recognizes many familiar faces, but the fallen status of House Stark is clear when mostly everyone refuses to look at her and tries to avoid speaking to her:

Sansa slipped in among them, murmuring greetings as she worked her way toward the front. She recognized black-skinned Jalabhar Xho, gloomy Ser Aron Santagar, the Redwyne twins Horror and Slobber… only none of them seemed to recognize her. Or if they did, they shied away as if she had the grey plague. Sickly Lord Gyles covered his face at her approach and feigned a fit of coughing, and when funny drunken Ser Dontos started to hail her, Ser Balon Swann whispered in his ear and he turned away.

And so many others were missing. Where had the rest of them gone? Sansa wondered. Not one of them would meet her eyes. It was as if she had become a ghost, dead before her time.

Joffrey enters the court and the proceedings commence. First on the agenda is reading out a long list of names of persons that the crown expects to swear fealty to the new king. Pycelle calls many names, chief among whom are the lords Stannis and Renly Baratheon, Mace Tyrell, Walder Frey, and ladies Lysa Arryn and Catelyn Stark and their children. The failure to appear and swear their allegiance will result in the loss of lands and titles and being adjudged traitors.

After this, the court appoints Tywin Lannister as the new Hand of the King, and declares that Janos Slynt, Commander of the City watch, will be raised to the rank of lord and granted Harrenhal as his new seat. Sansa notices that this decision causes some consternation among the other lords gathered in court.

Sansa glimpsed motion from the corner of her eye as Janos Slynt made his entrance. This time the muttering was louder and angrier. Proud lords whose houses went back thousands of years made way reluctantly for the balding, frog-faced commoner as he marched past.

But this is only the first in a series of controversial decisions that Joffrey and Cersei proceed to enact. Next, Cersei calls on Barristan Selmy, Commander of the Kingsguard, and tells him his service is at an end. Joffrey also accuses him of letting his father die.

Sansa watched as the knight peered up at his new king. She had never seen him look his years before, yet now he did. “Your Grace,” he said. “I was chosen for the White Swords in my twenty-third year. It was all I ever dreamed, from the moment I first took sword in hand. I gave up all claim to my ancestral keep. The girl I was to wed married my cousin in my place, I had no need of land or sons, my life would be lived for the realm…

These words, however, fail to move the Council or Joffrey, with LF mockingly pointing out that all of the kings Barristan served under are dead. When Cersei announces that Jaime Lannister is to be the new Lord Commander, this is what enflames Barristan. Calling him a Kingslayer, he rejects Varys’ attempts at placating him with promise of lands and money for his service. He strips off his armour, and tells them that he is a knight and will die a knight.

Littlefinger, unable to pass up the chance for mockery, ridicules him as “a naked knight.” Sansa notes:

They all laughed then. Joffrey on his throne, and the lords standing attendance, Janos Slynt and Queen Cersei and Sandor Clegane and even the other men of the Kingsguard, the five who had been his brothers until a moment ago. Surely that must have hurt the most, Sansa thought. Her heart went out to the gallant old man as he stood shamed and red-faced, too angry to speak.

The laughter dies when Barristan draws his sword, but he only throws it at Joffrey, telling him to melt it down and add it to the throne as it would do him more good than any of the others in the hall, and perhaps even Stannis might chance to sit on it when he comes to take the throne. This angers Joff, and he sends men after Barristan to arrest him.

In place of Barristan, Sandor Clegane is made the new KG member, but obstinately refuses to take any knight’s vows. After this, Sansa decides it is the opportune time for her to make her plea and approaches Joffrey on the throne. She is wearing her ivory silk dress, dyed in black to hide the stain that Arya made with the blood orange. Kneeling upon Barristan’s discarded white cloak, she asks for mercy for “my father, Lord Eddard Stark, who was Hand of the King.”

Cersei and Pycelle are dismissive, the former telling her that she is disappointed she has come to beg for a traitor, but Sansa is persistent and focused on Joffrey, whom she believes is sympathetic to her cause:

Sansa had eyes only for Joffrey. He must listen to me, he must, she thought. The King shifted on his seat. “Let her speak,” he commanded. “I want to hear what she says.”

“Thank you, Your Grace.” Sansa smiled, a shy secret smile, just for him. He was listening. She knew he would.

Admitting that she is not there to proclaim her father’s innocence, but rather to ask for mercy, Sansa tries to give some mitigating reasons for why Ned acted the way he did. She cites his hurt leg and that Pycelle was giving him milk of the poppy which may have clouded his judgement. After hearing her speak, Joffrey declares that he will be merciful, only on the condition that Eddard confesses his crime, and admits to Joff being the rightful king. The chapter ends with Sansa’s overjoyed certainty that her father will do so and be saved.

Analysis

The chapter struck me as the beginning of Sansa’s real isolation at KL. She is all alone, with no one to talk to and it’s a marked difference from the earlier experiences at court when she had Jeyne and Septa Mordane for company, and people were anxious to meet and entertain her. Now that she’s a prisoner, she’s automatically become a pariah, with no one wanting to be seen associating with her. This of course is a sad comment on human nature, the tendency to kick someone when they’re down or to fail to empathise with another’s suffering. The chapter displays this unflattering quality both with reference to the treatment of Sansa, and later on with Barristan Selmy.

It does seem, however, that Sansa is able to adjust as best as she can to her new status. She’s not foolish enough to believe Cersei’s spin on the guards that follow her around, but she wisely accepts that there’s no place for her to run to. Her father is currently in captivity, and she has no where else to go. She has to try to negotiate and survive within her means, and this consists of praying for her father at two holy places, and making a brave appearance in court to petition the king. At this point, Sansa is still banking on Joff’s love for her, and this, coupled with her love for her father, gives her the courage to make this plea.

I really detested the treatment of Sansa by the other lords gathered in court. She isn’t responsible for her father’s behaviour, but they shun her, as Sansa thinks, as though she had the plague. It’s obviously quite a depressing realisation on her part, as she mentions feeling like a ghost with no one wanting to take notice of her. I think all of this though, is building Sansa’s character bit by bit. It takes real courage to remain in a place where everyone is refusing to speak to you and still carry out the mission you came to do. It also speaks volumes that Ser Dontos allows himself to be dissuaded from speaking to her, but this is the same Sansa who will risk a beating later on to save his life.

I enjoyed the chapter as well for the absolute folly displayed by Cersei and Joffrey in making their decisions. In thinking to shore up loyalty for Joffrey, they effectively sowed considerable seeds of discontent in the unpopular appointments of Janos Slynt and the Hound, and the dismissal of Barristan. Knowing as we do whom the latter proceeds to give his loyalty to after he leaves the KG, Joffrey and Cersei practically handed over an asset to their sworn enemy. Raising Janos Slynt to a lord was an insult to every noble there, and the Hound’s appointment was nothing more than a sham given the nature of Barristan’s dismissal and his refusal to say the vows of knighthood first.

It’s interesting that this seems to be the first time Sansa hears her sister’s name when it is called at court for those required to swear fealty. She realises that Arya must have escaped that day and thinks that she is probably safe at Winterfell by now. That’s clearly where Sansa would prefer to be as well, despite her continued love for Joffrey.

The lack of respect showed to Barristan was also surprising. You would think that Cersei would have attempted to treat him with more honour given his esteemed reputation throughout Westeros, but again, this is where we see Sansa showing a lot more empathy, and sensitivity to a person’s distress, and displaying a mature awareness concerning people’s feelings. She recognizes that the laughter is what must have pained Barristan the most, given that his entire life was dedicated to honour and courage. She does not partake in the laughter herself, but feels a lot of sympathy towards this “gallant old man” who is now being told he is no longer fit to serve. It reminded me here of her similarities to another Queen, Daenerys Targaryen, in their reverence and respect towards Barristan.

Joffrey by contrast comes off as petty and petulant, and Littlefinger as mocking and cruel. The Hound’s refusal to say the knight’s vows is also counterpointed by Barristan’s refusal to give up his knighthood. It’s an interesting dichotomy. One man associates knighthood with feigned principles and pretence, whilst the other clings to it as representative of honour and dignity. Which one is right or wrong? What lesson can Sansa take away from all this?

I think this is where it comes down to personal behaviour. Barristan associates being a knight and serving in the KG as the highest honour he can attain, but his legacy is nonetheless tainted by having served under some real tyrants and misfits, one of whom he was currently being dismissed by. Still, his very real courage and prowess in battle have made him famous. Sandor, on the other hand, thinks that knighthood is just a bogus tradition, but has not chosen to live his life with any honour or dignity up to this point. He enjoys a rather infamous reputation as a result. Ultimately, both these men will have to define their lives not by whom they serve so much, but what they do under that service, and knighthood has very little to do with it one way or another.

Sansa’s continued hope that Joffrey’s love for her will make him spare her father’s life is given some validation at the end of the chapter, even though we as readers know this isn’t the case. Joffrey is displaying the kind of lordly tolerance and fairness he wants to make people believe he possesses, and Sansa at this point is still blind to this fact about him. I do think she acts with real courage here, especially in the face of Cersei’s and Pycelle’s disapproving comments. She makes a childish, yet heartfelt case for her father’s life, and is rewarded with Joff’s promise that if Eddard confesses, he will be granted mercy.

Varys at least shows some support for her cause, but Littlefinger is notably silent, only asking if she was denying her father’s crime. It’s not surprising that Sansa later comes to think of him as not doing anything to help her out in KL. From the very beginning, LF has been concerned with not what is best for Sansa – in this instance, saving her father’s life, but how best to get her under his control.

Some final thoughts on the symbolism and foreshadowing in this chapter: when Sansa kneels on Barristan’s white cloak, I felt this was foreshadowing of her later making use of Sandor’s discarded cloak in the Battle of Blackwater bedroom scene. Both cloaks are thrown down by their wearers in disgust and anger, symbolising the corruption of the Kingsguard. This corruption and dishonour will be keenly felt by Sansa in ACOK, but it seems to me that in particular reference to Sandor and Barristan, Sansa’s “faith” in these cloaks, and her unique understanding and compassion shown towards the men who wore them, suggest that they will get another chance to do some good and find honour in their lives again, as we do end up seeing later on with Barristan/Daenerys and Sandor/Arya.

Barristan’s words to Joffrey also seemed to be slightly prophetic. In the end, all the swords around him did him no good, and he’s killed by poison. Will Stannis suffer a fatal cut attempting to sit the Iron Throne too? One can wish ;) With the looming threat of the grey plague in ADWD, Sansa’s comments about it here were certainly eerie, and finally the sad realisation that Sansa’s certainty about what her father would do wasn’t wrong, but it was her desperate conviction in her beloved Joffrey that lets her down cruelly.

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[she would] visit the sept to pray for her father. Sometimes she prayed in the godswood as well, since the Starks kept the old gods.

This seems to indicate that her usual preference for prayer would be the sept, but considering that her family is caught in a hard place, and she's praying for Ned, she also goes to the godswood. I think this marks the beginning of her slowly coming closer to he Old Gods and ways of the North, and it's precipitated by seeing her family scattered like leaves. Its symbolically imporant because child Sansa is marked by rebelling against her family a bit in favor of her "love" and the family she expects to join upon marriage. Sansa, as she's forced to grow through these events, becomes closer to her roots.

I found the role and treatment of Barristan really interesting in this chapter. Overall I think he's a very sweet and well-intentioned man, but it's clear that he's a pure follower until insulted, and a stickler for the rules in ways that may not always be positive. He shows no signs of having a problem with Joff until he's dismissed. When told that Jaime will be replacing him as LC of the KG, his response is disgust:

"The Kingslayer," Ser Barristan said, his voice hard with contempt. "The false knight who profaned his blade with the blood of the king he had sword to defend."

He shows as much knee-jerk contempt for Jaime as Ned did when he found Jaime sitting on the throne with Aerys's blood on his sword. These men of honor, no matter how sweet and loveable, don't seem to be able to see the big picture here. Not even Barristan understands the conflict in his knightly vows; protect the mad king, or protect the innocent masses? One could argue that Aerys should have been condemned by trial and beheaded, not killed on the spot by a KG, but from Jaime's story it seems like there was enough of a sense of urgency in stopping the burning of KL, that what he did was justifiable. All that being said, I admire Barristan for having the courage to tell Joff off to his face in such strong language, even if it took a personal loss and direct hit to his own honor for him to stand up to a monarch.

Brash said: Ultimately, both these men will have to define their lives not by whom they serve so much, but what they do under that service, and knighthood has very little to do with it one way or another.
I could not agree with this more!

Finally, I commend Sansa's composure and courage in the face of overwhelming opposition and ill-feeling toward her. She comes to ask for mercy for her father, and she does it in the most dignified manner possible, even with all those Small Council d-bags staring down at her, and the entire court cold towards her. I also like the symbolism of her kneeling on Barristan's fallen cloak. He was forced to shed it in humiliation in an unprecedented event of dismissal from the KG, to the dishonor of the entire insitution. The Hound's cloak is a similar incident, he gained it in a way that further dishonored the institution but then shed it and left it behind for Sansa. It's almost like Sansa, with her high and unbending ideals, no matter what life throws at her, serves as a purifying force, in contrast to the farce and dishonor associated with these cloaks. This would be even more significant if she becomes the Younger Queen. I'd like to see what she does with the Kingsguard.

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This seems to indicate that her usual preference for prayer would be the sept, but considering that her family is caught in a hard place, and she's praying for Ned, she also goes to the godswood. I think this marks the beginning of her slowly coming closer to he Old Gods and ways of the North, and it's precipitated by seeing her family scattered like leaves. Its symbolically imporant because child Sansa is marked by rebelling against her family a bit in favor of her "love" and the family she expects to join upon marriage. Sansa, as she's forced to grow through these events, becomes closer to her roots.

Yes, indeed. I think we see this process with all the Starks as well. The further estranged they are from home and family, the more they seem to cling to it. I got the sense in this chapter that Sansa was beginning to internalise a lot of her feelings - a natural occurence given that she has no one to confide in - but also the sense that she's refusing to break down, keeping hope alive at all costs, and trying hard not to think about Winterfell.

I found the role and treatment of Barristan really interesting in this chapter. Overall I think he's a very sweet and well-intentioned man, but it's clear that he's a pure follower until insulted, and a stickler for the rules in ways that may not always be positive. He shows no signs of having a problem with Joff until he's dismissed. When told that Jaime will be replacing him as LC of the KG, his response is disgust:

He shows as much knee-jerk contempt for Jaime as Ned did when he found Jaime sitting on the throne with Aerys's blood on his sword. These men of honor, no matter how sweet and loveable, don't seem to be able to see the big picture here. Not even Barristan understands the conflict in his knightly vows; protect the mad king, or protect the innocent masses?

Based on what Barristan goes on to do - actually vetting the person he will give his service to - illustrates that he has learnt a valuable lesson from this incident. By making a conscious choice to serve Dany, he is now responsible for his own honour and behaviour in times of conflict and confusion. Before this he was just going along with the programme basically. One king dead, ready to serve the next. Although he was treated terribly here, I do think he needed this awakening of sorts. He had grown too comfortable with simply adhering to the status quo.

Finally, I commend Sansa's composure and courage in the face of overwhelming opposition and ill-feeling toward her. She comes to ask for mercy for her father, and she does it in the most dignified manner possible, even with all those Small Council d-bags staring down at her, and the entire court cold towards her. I also like the symbolism of her kneeling on Barristan's fallen cloak. He was forced to shed it in humiliation in an unprecedented event of dismissal from the KG, to the dishonor of the entire insitution. The Hound's cloak is a similar incident, he gained it in a way that further dishonored the institution but then shed it and left it behind for Sansa. It's almost like Sansa, with her high and unbending ideals, no matter what life throws at her, serves as a purifying force, in contrast to the farce and dishonor associated with these cloaks. This would be even more significant if she becomes the Younger Queen. I'd like to see what she does with the Kingsguard.

This especially. One of my pet theories has always been that she'll be the one to reform the order of knighthood in Westeros, and with reference to her own KG as Queen, I think we would see a real focus on honourable men and service, not simply vows of allegiance. She is, as you put it, a purifying force. Things that were sullied, or bloodied or broken, have a new chance to become "white" or whole again through her influence. It's interesting to consider the significance of the ivory dress she dyes black in light of this reading too.

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Poor Sansa. This chapter though really shows quite how much composure and strength she has. If you contrast the throne room scene to the one in Darry, the atmosphere is much worse and this time she has no support, yet she manages to face Joff and keep her dignity. It really shows her strength of character.

There is also quite a lot of symbolism in this chapter. The black dress she wears is the one the Queen gave her that Arya ruined and she has now dyed black. Dresses from Cersei seem to be associated with disaster for her. For jewelry she chooses a simple silver chain (which given her status as a prisoner is also fitting).

Also her references to suddenly being a ghost echo the statements she makes about the ghost wolf cry when she is on her descent from the Eyrie and also may reference the death of Lady. She is just a shade of her former self. In much the same way as Jon Snow tries to kill the boy, Sansa's experiences in KL and in the Eyrie are killing the girl. Hopefully the ghost part may symbolism that she still has her empathy and compassion but that her naivety has died and perhaps some of her idealism and trust.

The scene in the throne room where she feels like a ghost also highlights her new position as a pariah and the falseness of supposedly worthy knights such as Ser Balon Swann.

With the looming threat of the grey plague in ADWD, Sansa’s comments about it here were certainly eerie, and finally the sad realisation that Sansa’s certainty about what her father would do wasn’t wrong, but it was her desperate conviction in her beloved Joffrey that lets her down cruelly.

:agree:

The grey plague reference is very interesting. Due to the power of Kindle it appears that (as opposed to greyscale) the grey plague is only mentioned twice in AGOT and both times by Sansa: once when the maids flee from her and then in the court room. It seems the only other places it is mentioned are in AFFC, when it is talked about affecting Oldtown in the past and when Aurane Waters mentions an outbreak in Yi Ti. In ADWD, Ilyario talks about it in reference to Serra in a conversation with Tyrion and that's it. I'm not sure if this is prophetic but with Sansa's possible future connection to Aegon and her current connection to Tyrion (who may have greyscale) this maybe more than coincidence.

Will Stannis suffer a fatal cut attempting to sit the Iron Throne too? One can wish ;)

:fencing: Arrr them be fighting words! Stannis "the God"Barratheon will sit the Iron Throne but probably as Hand of the King.

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Ughhh I HATED Stannis and LOVED hating him sooooo much until I read the Theon chapter for WoW. And now I think I kind of love him. Did not think it was possible to do a 180 on a character just like that, DAMN YOU GRRM!

Sansa and Stannis would be quite the double act. Sansa, the sweet and courteous queen, planning and scheming behing those Tully blue eyes . Stannis the Enforcer, executing said plans. Stannis doesn't take crap from anyone.

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@ Rapsie - Down with Stannis!! :P

Hmmm, that grey plague reference is indeed strange if she's the only one to reference it in 3 books.

I agree that based on the people she's liable to come into contact with, her catching it could be a possiblity. Let's hope not!

I agree with you on the symbolism of the black dress - Cersei's dresses are disasters, and in this case the dress symbolizes death (Ned's) and Sansa's mourning.

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Hmmm, that grey plague reference is indeed strange if she's the only one to reference it in 3 books.

I agree that based on the people she's liable to come into contact with, her catching it could be a possiblity. Let's hope not!

Sorry I should correct, she is the only one to reference it in AGOT and does do on two occasions (both times with people fleeing from her), then it is referenced by Aurane Waters (Yi TI) and Pycelle (Oldtown) in AFFC and once by Illyario in ADWD.

@ Brashcandy

Bend knee now....Stannis won't be so forgiving once he's hand. Although his marriage to Val should sweeten his temper. :rofl:

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@ Rapsie - Down with Stannis!! :P

Hmmm, that grey plague reference is indeed strange if she's the only one to reference it in 3 books.

I agree that based on the people she's liable to come into contact with, her catching it could be a possiblity. Let's hope not!

I agree with you on the symbolism of the black dress - Cersei's dresses are disasters, and in this case the dress symbolizes death (Ned's) and Sansa's mourning.

Seeing that Rapsie beat me to it I felt better about the plague references after a seeing them in other books, to be sure if she comes into contact with Connington, Tyrion or maybe Aegon she could get it, but in all the books neither Danny, or Bran showed gray scale dreams for anything looking as a wolf, bird or dog or the little red hair girl for that matter.

And I took the black dress for mourning of her dad his servants and her house and also a possible reference to the death of the girl before the blooming of the woman.

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this is such a sad, bittersweet chapter... and i have no idea why but i always remember about this chapter the moment when janos slynt is given harrenhal and sansa is onging that a true hero could appear and struk off slynt's head- which we do see happening later on with jon. I don't know, i just like this prophetic little thing in the chapter.

Anyways, talking about dontos ignoring sansa here, is he even going to appear on the adaptation at all? and about ser barristan i liked all the comments about how he wanted so much to remain a part of the kingsguard while sandor i bet didn't even like it that much. and i think it just shows how scary joff is even after being king only for like a week or something that no one is prepared to plea for barristan staying here, fearing the new boy king's wrath. and yet sansa could not see it even here. the black dress i do think means her mourning for ned and it was a little sad when the hound said that no one cared about what he did so why not join the kingsguard.

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Anyways, talking about dontos ignoring sansa here, is he even going to appear on the adaptation at all? and about ser barristan i liked all the comments about how he wanted so much to remain a part of the kingsguard while sandor i bet didn't even like it that much. and i think it just shows how scary joff is even after being king only for like a week or something that no one is prepared to plea for barristan staying here, fearing the new boy king's wrath. and yet sansa could not see it even here.

Well, in all honesty, Joff doesn't come across as completely terrible in the scene. He acts like a little boy for sure with regards to Barristan, but how much Sansa cares about this is debatable. She definitely notices how they all laugh at Barristan - LF, the Hound, Joffrey, Cersei, and everyone else gathered - but she's also set on Joffrey, Prince Charming, granting her wish. I think in this chapter we're seeing her confidence in his "innate gallantry" slipping a bit. She keeps thinking that he must listen to her, is very attuned to signs that he still loves her, and tries very hard to play an almost coquettish role for him - giving him a secret smile, etc.

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I really detested the treatment of Sansa by the other lords gathered in court. She isn’t responsible for her father’s behaviour, but they shun her, as Sansa thinks, as though she had the plague.

Much as I dislike Sansa being treated this way, I have a hard time blaming the people for wanting to disassociate themselves from the Starks. They are witnessing the spectacle of what happens to anyone whose loyalty is questionable to the Lannisters, and they do not want to be next. It comes across as cowardly, but all these people have family and property that they do not want to see destroyed as well. It might be easier to say "hell with it" and behave friendly to Sansa if it is just their own necks on the line, but no one wants to see their own family occupying the cell next to Ned's. It would require extraordinary courage to buck the system and be seen to be sympathetic to Sansa, and there is not a lot of courage going around right now ...just a lot of confusion and fear.

I wish I could say honestly that I would have spoken up for Sansa in their place, but I am afraid that fear for my husband and children would probably have kept me silent as well.

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Much as I dislike Sansa being treated this way, I have a hard time blaming the people for wanting to disassociate themselves from the Starks. They are witnessing the spectacle of what happens to anyone whose loyalty is questionable to the Lannisters, and they do not want to be next. It comes across as cowardly, but all these people have family and property that they do not want to see destroyed as well. It might be easier to say "hell with it" and behave friendly to Sansa if it is just their own necks on the line, but no one wants to see their own family occupying the cell next to Ned's. It would require extraordinary courage to buck the system and be seen to be sympathetic to Sansa, and there is not a lot of courage going around right now ...just a lot of confusion and fear.

I wish I could say honestly that I would have spoken up for Sansa in their place, but I am afraid that fear for my husband and children would probably have kept me silent as well.

:agree: :agree:

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:agree: :agree:

But why though? No one is saying that these men should have surrounded Sansa with hugs and kisses, but not even a polite hello? They acted as though she didn't exist, and her father hadn't even been officially convicted yet. They felt free enough to voice their displeasure when Janos Slynt was made a lord, so why not extend even the slightest courtesy to a young, frightened girl. Sorry, it just stinks, and I have no understanding for them whatsoever.

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A couple of things to add to the masterly analysis and comments...

I was struck by Sansa's powers of observation and the extent of her empathy, at a time when she is frightened and bearing on her very young shoulders the only hope for her father to be spared death. She can identify various acquaintances who now shun her, when some people, in her place, would just see a sea of blank and hostile faces. And she feels great compassion for Barristan and can pinpoint what must be especially painful to him (i.e. his brothers of the Kingsguard laughing at him). These powers of observation are being sharpened now, even as Sansa descends into a very difficult time in her life.

This passage, from the book -

<<Sansa had eyes only for Joffrey.

He must listen to me, he must,

she thought. The King shifted on his seat. “Let her speak,” he commanded. “I want to hear what she says.”

“Thank you, Your Grace.” Sansa smiled, a shy secret smile, just for him. He was listening. She knew he would

.>>

Sansa is approaching Joffrey with something other than adoration. She still has faith in him, but not totally blind faith, she realizes that she must persuade him to save Ned - the inference being, perhaps, that Sansa knows Joffrey won't spare Ned without Sansa's plea. Sansa is very focussed here; and she is taking an active role instead of just reacting. The 'shy secret smile' is a nice subtle touch; and makes it clear that Sansa is using her considerable charm, either consciously or unconsciously, as a weapon in her campaign - something we have not seen her do before, at least not often.

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