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brashcandy

From Pawn to Player? Rereading Sansa V

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*joins in the laughter* Lyanna, I thnk you've hit on one of the major character foil points in the KL sequence. It's beautiful, the way Sansa's allies are able to stay hidden because it would not even occur to Cersei that they could be her allies. From the (somewhat bare) textual evidence, Cersei and Joff value Sandor as a badass warrior and obedient servant, but would never have thought to ask or care where he gave his heart. Dontos, they dismiss as a humiliated fool who wouldn't have the brains or the guts to do anything to help an abused hostage. Can you imagine Cersei's reaction to a sloppy Dontos kiss? :snickers:

Sansa, on the other hand, sees a Florian who does, in fact, come to her rescue as best he can, and the heart of a true knight beneath that plain gray armor and snarling helm. Sansa-pampered-girl-of-Winterfell is growing into Sansa-the-queen who rules by love, not fear. Part of that love is knowing, and caring, who your people really are. Even with Tyrion, she has a much better handle on who he is than he does on her. Maybe all that Lannister inbreeding has somehow affected their character-judging abilities? :P Anyhow...fascinating coming-of-age sequence.

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It would be a priceless chapter if George wrote about the whole world’s reactions to San/San. I’m sure no one would ever have expected it, whether it is Cersei or Tyrion, Joff, Arya (I would have also loved to see her thoughts as she kept on hearing the Hound talking about Sansa). Or whether it be somewhat like Brienne who has never met either of them, to Ned or Cat, I’m sure this would be the gossip of the year- especially I Sansa became a queen (sighs, in this scenario I guess Sandor would have to be her paramour not her king). But overall I bet that even Sansa is going to be pleasantly surprised once she finally acknowledges where her feelings are, & Sandor will also have a hard time believing it.

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Warning: Monster post ahead.

ASOS - SANSA VI

Summary and Analysis (all in one)

PART I

The chapter entails Sansa’s arrival to Littlefinger’s birthright, a small island of the Fingers, stony and desolate. Lothor Brune helps her off the ship and she thinks:

Ser Lothor, she had to remind herself; the man had been knighted for his valor in the Battle of the Blackwater. Though no proper knight would wear those patched brown breeches and scuffed boots, nor that cracked and water-stained leather jerkin. A square-faced stocky man with squashed nose and a mat of nappy grey hair, Brune spoke seldom. He is stronger than he looks, though. She could tell by the ease with which he lifted her, as if she weighed nothing at all.

Now do you see what I mean by GRRM trolling readers? Is it not curiously strange and ironic that Littlefinger would have a man so similar in dress and speech (or lack thereof) to Sandor Clegane? Even though Sandor is no longer in Sansa’s life, Brune is definitely fulfilling the imagery related to the man: strong, taciturn, very bad fashion sense. If Martin indeed wants to extend these similarities further, is it possible that we could see Lothor switching his loyalties from LF to Sansa? He’s had a first hand view of the LF’s treachery and manipulations, so if there’s anyone besides Sansa (and maybe Sandor) who could be damaging to the man, it would be Brune.

Sansa is grateful to finally have calm waters beneath her given the harrowing sea journey she endured. Two men were swept over board during a storm and another had broken his neck. She remembers the awful time she had, filled with memories of Joff’s death:

She had seldom ventured out on deck herself. Her little cabin was dank and cold, but Sansa had been sick for most of the voyage … sick with terror, sick with fever, or sea sick … she could keep nothing down, and even sleep came hard. Whenever she closed her eyes she saw Joffrey tearing at his collar, clawing the soft skin of his throat, dying with flakes of pie crust on his lips and wine stains on his doublet. And the wind keening in the lines reminded her of the terrible sucking sound he’d made as he fought to draw in air. Sometimes she dreamed of Tyrion as well. “He did nothing,” she told Littlefinger once, when he paid a visit to her cabin to see if she were feeling any better.

Littlefinger’s response to this is to tell Sansa that although Tyrion might not have had a hand in Joffrey’s death, he was still a vile human being, having given his first wife over to his guardsmen when he was done with her. He tells Sansa that he might have done the same with her so shed no tears for the man.

What we’re seeing her is LF’s continued campaign of disparaging any man in Sansa’s life that she may think even decently of. His words about shedding no tears for Tyrion echo his earlier words about Dontos. He wants not only to isolate her physically, but emotionally as well, painting Tyrion as a monster who would have callously given her over to be raped and tortured. What’s ironic here is that LF is the one who actually endangered Sansa’s life in this way, letting the Lannisters know of the Willas plot, and making her endure a forced wedding and bedding to Tyrion. Had it not been for the latter’s innate kindness, Sansa’s innocence would have been lost. It is not enough for LF to know that Tyrion might be sentenced to death and be out of Sansa’s life forever; he must ensure that she isn’t even thinking somewhat kindly of the man. This kind of behaviour is what really disturbs me about LF as well. The all consuming preoccupation with making sure that he is the only one who holds a place of worth and trust in Sansa’s thoughts.

Littlefinger comes to stand next to her and reassures her that a little wine will make her stomach feel better when they disembark, but Sansa is reluctant to come ashore and instead wants to wait until they reach White Harbour. It’s then that she learns that the home LF meant for her wasn’t Winterfell:

“Here?” She did not want to go ashore here. The Fingers were a dismal place, she’d heard, and there was something forlorn and desolate about the little tower. “Couldn’t I stay on the ship until we make sail for White Harbor?”

“From here the King turns east for Braavos. Without us.”

“But … my lord, you said … you said we were sailing home.”

“And there it stands, miserable as it is. My ancestral home. It has no name, I fear. A great lord’s seat ought to have a name, wouldn’t you agree? Winterfell, the Eyrie, Riverrun, those are castles. Lord of Harrenhal now, that has a sweet ring to it, but what was I before? Lord of Sheepshit and Master of the Drearfort? It lacks a certain something.” His grey-green eyes regarded her innocently. “You look distraught. Did you think we were making for Winterfell, sweetling? Winterfell has been taken, burned and sacked. All those you knew and loved are dead. What northmen who have not fallen to the Ironborn are warring amongst themselves. Even the Wall is under attack. Winterfell was the home of your childhood, Sansa, but you are no longer a child. You’re a woman grown, and you need to make your own home.

“But not here,” she said, dismayed. “It looks so…”

“… small and bleak and mean? It’s all that, and less. The Fingers are a lovely place, if you happen to be stone. But have no fear, we shan’t stay for more than a fortnight. I expect your aunt is already riding to meet us.” He smiled. “The Lady Lysa and I are to be wed.”

This exchange is important for a number of reasons:

  1. It highlights Littlefinger's deep seated discontent with his origins, which of course ultimately led him to want to acquire power and prestige at all costs. The castles he names are also the ones he’s had a hand in destroying and/or taking over, again revealing the very personal nature of his vendetta. LF may be a master of politics, but he’s driven by a very private need for revenge.
  2. His assertion that Sansa is now a “woman grown” is very much how he wants to see her. Whilst it’s true that Sansa is now more mature and has left her childish phase behind, she’s still far from being a woman grown. This characterisation fits LF’s purposes and desires, however, which is to have her as some kind of pseudo-Cat replacement, and to discourage her from thinking of Winterfell as a refuge.
  3. Although Sansa is unable to imagine making a life on the Fingers at this moment, there might be some foreshadowing in LF’s statement the Fingers are only lovely if you’re a stone. It is in this chapter that LF devises the alias Alayne Stone for her, and we know that unlike her Lady Lannister title, she comes to really embrace this identity in the future. So is it possible that we could see Sansa choosing to return to the Fingers one day to live? Something to think about for sure.

Sansa is shocked to hear that LF is planning to marry her aunt and her first thought is:

You said it was my mother you loved.

She reconciles this by noting that Catelyn is now dead, so even if she had given her maidenhood to Petyr and loved him secretly, it didn’t matter now.

She manages to congratulate LF politely, and thinks of Lysa:

She will be kind to me for my mother’s sake, surely. She’s my own blood. And the Vale of Arryn was beautiful, all the songs said so. Perhaps it would not be so terrible to stay here for a time.

It’s interesting that even after Sansa’s disappointment with her own marriage, she still associates the act of getting married with being in love. This idealistic outlook is an intrinsic part of Sansa’s character, coupled with her simple appreciation of the Eyrie from what she has heard in songs. Growing up in the world of Westeros may involve becoming more cynical and disillusioned, but I do think Martin wants us to appreciate that Sansa’s inherent personality is one that might always believe in or at least yearn for true love. If this remains so, she may indeed find it very difficult to commit to another political marriage.

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Whilst Sandor has other (inherited or genetic) attributes that more or less epitomise objective criteria for male beauty, namely great height, natural physical strength/broad shoulders, dark hair and heavier body hair(...)

:drool: :drool: :drool:

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PART II

When they come ashore on the island, the small household of servants gather to meet them. There are two women – one thin and old, the other fat and middle-aged, along with two very old white- haired men and a little girl “with a sty on one eye.” They kneel when they see Petyr and he jokingly comments on the child as being another one of Kella’s bastards:

He gave the old woman a kiss on the cheek, and grinned at the younger one. “Who fathered this one, Kella?”

The fat woman laughed. “I can’t rightly say, m’lord. I’m not one for telling them no.”

“And all the local lads are grateful, I am quite sure.”

“It is good to have you home, my lord,” said one old man. He looked at least eighty, but he wore a studded brigantine and a longsword at his side. “How long will you be in residence?”

It’s quite evident that whilst LF may be viewed with suspicion at court, he’s quite liked back at his own keep. The exchanges between him and the servants show that they respect and are fond of him, and he seems to feel the same, although his distaste for his birth home means that he is a bit condescending towards them and how they make their living on the rocky land:

If we knew you was coming we would have laid down fresh rushes, m’lord, said the crone. “There’s a dung fire burning.”

“Nothing says home like the smell of burning dung.” Petyr turned to Sansa. “Grisel was my wet nurse, but she keeps my castle now. Umfred’s my steward, and Bryen – didn’t I name you captain of my guard the last time I was here?”

“You did, my lord. You said you’d be getting some more men too, but you never did. Me and the dogs stand all the watches.”

My crackpot: Sansa often prays to the mother, the maiden and the crone. It’s interesting that here she meets a mother, Kella, and an old woman Martin chooses to refer to as a crone, and a little girl who could represent the maiden. Might this stony bleak island play a larger part in Sansa’s future?

Also, let me just say, LF doesn’t deserve these servants. They all come across as good natured and honest people, and whilst they clearly like LF and he does them, it’s noticeable that he thinks they are beneath him, and his insecurities over his birth come out repeatedly in his jokes over the humble life on the island. Also of note: the island is pretty much isolated and deserted. It doesn’t get many if any visitors, and Bryen seems capable of standing watch with only a few dogs.

On entering the tower, Sansa notices a “battered oaken shield, its paint cracked and flaking.” It picture is a grey stone head with fiery eyes on a light green field. LF explains to her that it was:

“My grandfather’s shield … His own father was born in Braavos and came to the Vale as a sellsword in the hire of Lord Corbray, so my grandfather took the head of the Titan as his sigil when he was knighted.”

“It’s very fierce,” said Sansa.

“Rather too fierce, for an amiable fellow like me,” said Petyr. “I much prefer my mockingbird.”

So here we have the biggest clue that LF might be the savage giant that the maid with the purple serpents in her hair kills. But it’s interesting that the actual image on the shield is of a grey stone head. This recalls the dream that Bran has of:

He saw his father pleading with the king, his face etched with grief. He saw Sansa crying herself to sleep at night, and he saw Arya watching in silence and holding her secrets hard in her heart. There were shadows all around them. One shadow was as dark as ash, with the terrible face of a hound. Another was armored like the sun, golden and beautiful. Over them both loomed a giant in armor made of stone, but when he opened his visor, there was nothing inside but darkness and thick black blood.

Now the giant in armor made of stone is generally thought to be Un-gregor, but could it instead be Littlefinger? When the giant lifts his visor there is nothing but darkness and thick black blood, and whilst this does seem to be a clear allusion to Un-Gregor who never takes off his helm, it might also be referring symbolically to the evil contained within LF. Anyways, just a thought. Of course we also have to consider that LF disavows his grandfather’s shield, claiming that he prefers his mockingbird. This however comes off as mere pretence for Sansa’s sake. LF might prefer the mockingbird for it’s suggestions of intrigue and subtlety, but there’s no doubt that he has giant aspirations and has effected lots of change on a massive scale.

LF then tells her that it’s necessary for her to adopt a different identity before her aunt arrives, cautioning that Varys has spies everywhere and that it wouldn’t be safe to be Sansa right now. He suggests that she pretend to be his natural daughter, and Sansa is aghast at the thought at first, until LF convinces her that any other story would be unbelievable. He suggests his mother’s name Alayne, and she choose this one, saying “Alayne is pretty.”

Sansa’s desire to not be seen as a bastard is a product of her upbringing and socialization. We know the stain that bastards carry in Westeros, and it’s quite understandable why she would at first be apprehensive to the idea of posing as one. I found it funny that when LF is crafting the story of Sansa as the daughter of a gentlewoman who spent her early years being cared for by the Faith, he tells her to look over some devotions because “ nothing discourages unwanted questions as much as a flow of pious bleating.” Of course, Sansa had already done something very similar with Tyrion back in KL, and achieved the desired results of getting him to give up the thought of accompanying her to the godswood.

Another noteworthy bit to highlight:

“Do you think you can remember all that?

“I hope. It will be like playing a game, won’t it?”

“Are you fond of games, Alayne?”

The new name would take some getting used to. “Games? I … I suppose it would depend …”

Just what would it depend on Sansa? What would she have gone to say or what would we have learnt had Grisel not entered and LF had been able to probe her further? What is the deal-breaker for Sansa when it comes to game playing?

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PART III

The scene between LF and Sansa eating the fruits is highly symbolic, and sexually suggestive. Littlefinger chooses the pomegranate and offers half to Sansa, but she chooses the pear instead:

Pomegranate seeds were so messy; Sansa chose a pear instead, and took a small delicate bite. It was very ripe. The juice ran down her chin.

Lord Petyr loosened a seed with the point of his dagger.

Now, do you guys remember the Hidden Symbolism of Fruit in Renaissance Painting that I had posted in one of the earlier FPTP threads? Well here’s what it said about the two fruits that are eaten here:

pomegranate - Symbolizes eternal life; divine prosperity; unity of the Christian community. The pomegranate can also signify fall from grace and mans sinful nature. Also associated with Saint Catherine, as the mystical bride of Christ.

pearSymbolizes marital faith. Also associated with Saint Catherine, as the mystical bride of Christ

I would definitely say that LF’s eating of the pomegranate is meant to highlight his fall from grace and his sinful nature. He’s committed himself to a path of deceit and treachery and his offering of Sansa of half of the fruit could be taken as a sign of him wanting to corrupt her, as Eve offered half of the apple to Adam. Indeed, LF goes on to talk about pieces and pawns in the game, telling Sansa that although her father was honest and loyal, he was an awful player.

Sansa’s rejection of the pomegranate then, perhaps symbolizes her future rejection of LF’s corrupt behaviour, and certainly by not accepting his “seed” it may signify that there will be no sexual relations between the two. With regards to the symbolism associated with the pear, might this mean that Sansa will indeed remain “faithful” to Tyrion in some form, or simply that she has more principles and honour than LF does? Interestingly, both symbols mention Saint Catherine – the mystical bride of Christ. A quick google search reveals this to be Catherine of Alexandria:

Life

Living in the capital—the centre of Hellenistic knowledge—and possessed of an uncommon beauty and intellect, Catherine received a most splendid of educations, having studied the works of the finest philosophers and teachers of antiquity. Young men from the most worthy families of the empire sought the hand of the beautiful Catherine, but none of them was chosen. She declared to her parents that she would be agreeable to enter into marriage only with someone who surpassed her in illustriousness, wealth, comeliness, and wisdom.

Catherine's mother, a secret Christian, sent her for advice to her own spiritual father—a saintly elder pursuing prayerful deeds in solitude in a cave not far from the city. Having listened to Catherine, the elder said that he knew of a youth who surpassed her in everything, such that "His beauty was more radiant than the shining of the sun, his wisdom governed all creation, his riches were spread throughout all the world—this however did not diminish but rather added to the inexpressible loftiness of his lineage." The image of the heavenly Bridegroom produced in the soul of the holy maiden an ardent desire to see him. Truth, to which her soul yearned, revealed it to her. In parting, the elder handed Catherine an icon of the Mother of God with the God-Child Jesus on her arm and bid her to pray with faith to the Queen of Heaven—the Mother of the Heavenly Bridegroom—for the bestowing of the vision of Her Son.

Catherine prayed all night and was given to see the Most Holy Virgin, who sent her divine Son to look upon the kneeling of Catherine before Them. But the Child turned his face away from her saying, that he was not able to look at her because she was ugly, of shabby lineage, beggarly and mindless like every person—not washed with the waters of holy Baptism and not sealed with the seal of the Holy Spirit. Catherine returned again to the elder deeply saddened. He lovingly received her, instructed her in the faith of Christ, admonished her to preserve her purity and integrity and to pray unceasingly; he then performed over her the mystery/sacrament of holy baptism. And again Saint Catherine had a vision of the Mother of God with her Child. Now the Lord looked tenderly at her and gave her a ring—a wondrous gift of the heavenly Bridegroom.

Ok, so lots of potential relevance and foreshadowing there in Sansa’s arc! I’ll leave this discussion to be extended in follow up posts.

Later on during their conversation, Sansa does accept half of a blood orange from LF, but according to the source on the fruit symbolism:

orange -Symbol of free will.

This fits with Sansa’s earlier rejection of the pomegranate, and again has important implications for the future decisions we may see her making. The blood orange also has personal symbolism for Sansa in that it was this fruit which Arya hit her with in AGOT, representing a bloody and painful experience of maturity. By accepting this fruit from LF, Sansa could be symbolically accepting the challenge of moving from pawn to player. No longer being hit with the fruit, but this time having some control over where the blood goes.

“I love the juice but I loathe the sticky fingers,” he complained, wiping his hands. “Clean hands, Sansa. Whatever you do, make certain your hands are clean.”

The entire conversation is filled with discoveries and lessons for Sansa. LF reassures her that everyone starts out as a piece and that she’s still a child after all. He brings up Cersei as an example of someone who thinks she’s a player, but is only a predictable pawn with nothing to rely on besides her beauty and birth, of which the first will eventually desert her.

She wants power but has no notion what to do with it when she gets it. Everyone wants something, Alayne. And when you know what a man wants you know who he is, and how to move him.”

The reference to Cersei as an example is particularly useful for Sansa, given her own dubious “lessons” from the Queen back at the Red Keep. Sansa is learning to operate in another fashion, not relying on beauty and birth, but on brains and insight.

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PART IV

Following on, she learns the true identity of Oswell (he is the father of the Kettlebacks), with LF telling her that he was behind the sending of the Kettleback boys to KL in the first place when he learnt that Bronn was looking to hire swords. Littlefinger goes on to reveal that it was Lady Olenna who was behind the poisoning of Joffrey, leaving Sansa shocked. He explains the subtleties of approach he used: not bad mouthing Joffrey outright, but making sure that disturbing tales were spread about the King, and not suggesting directly that Loras joined the KG, but making sure that the vacancies were well noted and getting singers to sing of the exploits of Serwyn of the Mirror Shield and Aemon the Dragonknight.

The end result is that Mace thinks it is his idea to have Loras on the KG, but of course Lady Olenna realises the potential kingslayer stew to boil. Knowing that Mace was determined to make Marg a Queen, but that Joffrey did not need to be the king, the plot was set. Sansa thinks:

Margaery and Tommen. Sansa did not know what to say. She had liked Margaery Tyrell, and her small sharp grandmother as well. She thought wistfully of Highgarden with its courtyards and musicians, and the pleasure barges on the Mander; a far cry from this bleak shore. At least I am safe here. Joffrey is dead, he cannot hurt me anymore, and I am only a bastard girl now. Alayne Stone has no husband and no claim. And her aunt would soon be here as well. The long nightmare of King’s Landing was behind her, and her mockery of a marriage as well. She could make herself a new home here, just as Petyr said.

These thoughts indicate that what Sansa wants more than anything is to be left in peace. After her abusive and tumultous time in KL, she longs for a sense of home, and is beginning to appreciate the freedom in anonymity that being a bastard girl might bring to her. She’s glad that the sham marriage is behind her, and doesn’t seem all that interested in the shenanigans of Margaery and her grandmother, past thinking a bit on Highgarden. The fanciful Sansa is being replaced by the pragmatic Alayne, learning the contentment of being free and safe, even if one has to exist without desired pleasures and comforts.

Lysa takes eight days to arrive on the island. And during this time, Sansa finds companionship with an old, blind dog that is too sick to walk guard anymore with Bryen.

… when she patted him he whined and licked her hand, and after that they were fast friends.

I’ve always thought that the old dog is meant to represent Sandor Clegane and the relationship she came to share with him (and may yet still). Although theirs was a lot more complex and tortured than the one she enjoys with the actual dog, they basically came to enjoy a closeness and connection on the night when she touched his shoulder after hearing of what Gregor had done to him. Sandor as is he now may be closer to the state of the old blind dog, as we don’t know if he’s retained his fighting skills after the leg injury. (Brienne notes in AFFC that the gravedigger walks with a kind of lurching gait)

During this time, LF takes Sansa on a tour of the island which takes only half a day. One thing I noted was that only the oldest members of the 12 families living on the island seemed to know Petyr. Again, just pointing out that if Sansa wanted to take over this island as her home in the future, she isn’t likely to meet with much opposition or even questions from anyone.

Lysa arrives soon after, and when Sansa sees her she is surprised by her appearance:

Could that by my aunt? Lady Lysa was two years younger than Mother, but this woman looked ten years older. Thick auburn tresses fell down past her waist, but beneath the costly velvet gown and jeweled bodice her body sagged and bulged. Her face was pink and painted, her breasts heavy, her limbs thick. She was taller than Littlefinger and heavier; nor did she show any grace in the clumsy way she climbed down off her horse.

It’s a pity that the degeneration of Lysa’s body had to match her mind. When she sees Sansa she isn’t happy, already showing signs of the jealousy that would bring her into conflict with the girl. Her announcement that she wants to be married in right there and then doesn’t please Littlefinger, but he cannot overrule her and the wedding takes place. It’s clear how much Lysa loves LF, with Sansa noticing that:

Mead and marriage had taken years off Lady Lysa. She laughed as everything so long as she held her husband’s hand, and her eyes seemed to glow whenever she looked at him.

The bedding that follows causes Sansa to remember her own wedding night and she thinks:

Tyrion spared me that … It would not have been so bad being undressed for a man she loved, by friends who loved them both. By Joffrey though … She shuddered.

Again, we’re seeing the importance Sansa places on love in a relationship. She’s able to realise the sincere affection Lysa holds for LF and how it transforms even her appearance and her behaviour. For Sansa herself, she’s showing signs of growing up, being able to contemplate getting undressed for a man and it not being unpleasant if she was in love with him.

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PART V

Lysa’s screams and moans of pleasure are soon heard throughout the little tower and gradually the atmosphere becomes sexually charged, with knights and maids kissing in the corners. Sansa goes outside, and her thoughts revolve around her wedding night and Sandor Clegane:

Sansa went down the steps and out into the night. A light rain was falling on the remains of the feast, but the air smelt fresh and clean. The memory of her own wedding night was much with her. In the dark, I am the Knight of Flowers, he had said. I could be good to you. But that was only another Lannister lie. A dog can smell a lie, you know, the Hound told her once. She could almost hear the rough rasp of his voice. Look around you, and take a good whiff. They’re all liars here, and everyone better than you. She wondered what had become of Sandor Clegane Did he know that they’d killed Joffrey? Would he care? He had been the prince’s sworn shield for years.

These thoughts on Tyrion vs Sandor reveal which man Sansa places more faith and trust in. Tyrion’s attempts on the wedding night to deceive her into bed are viewed through the unrelenting insight of Sandor Clegane: “a dog can smell a lie.” It’s a curious juxtaposition to say the least, but one that perhaps explains itself given Sansa’s dream later on.

When she returns to her bed, she finds the old dog waiting for her, and states:

“You sad old hound,”

Sandor’s relationship with the dog also illustrates the compassion and kindness she shows to those who have been hurt and/or rejected by society. The dog is no longer able to perform its duties, but it finds a friend in Sansa and vice versa. When Marillion appears, the dog immediately senses the danger and growls at the man, but is sent off whimpering after being kicked by the singer. Marillion really is a despicable human being, trying to take advantage of Sansa, and the text makes clear that he would have raped her had Lothor not shown up. Again, we see the man fulfilling the role recently held by Sandor in Sansa’s life: as a protector of her innocence. However, Sandor’s importance in her life wasn’t simply as a protector. It is, based on Sansa’s thoughts and dreams, a hellava lot more complicated: with Sansa expressing IMO both conscious and unconscious desire and longing for the man:

And quick as that, Marillion was gone. The other remained, looming over Sansa in the darkness. “Lord Petyr said watch out for you.” It was Lothor Brune’s voice, she realised. Not the Hound’s no, no, how could it be? Of course it had to be Lothor.

Sansa of course knows it wasn’t Sandor, but the reason why she’s having such a hard time grasping this is because she badly wanted it to be him.

That night Sansa scarcely slept at all, but tossed and turned just as she had aboard the Merling King. She dreamt of Joffrey dying, but as he clawed her at his throat and the blood ran down her fingers she saw with horror that it was her brother Robb. And she dreamed of her wedding night too, of Tyrion’s eyes devouring her as she undressed. Only then he was bigger than Tyrion had any right to be, and when he crawled into bed his face was scarred only on one side. “I’ll have a song from you,” he rasped, and Sansa woke and found the old blind dog beside her once again. “I wish you were Lady,” she said.

Ok, so in trying to give you an analysis of this dream (when all I want to do is a happy dance and scream) it’s strange that we get absolutely no reaction from Sansa on it. She doesn’t wake up and think, gosh, that was unpleasant, or hmmm, that was interesting. Zip, zilch, nada. Of course, this is GRRM’s attempt to make us tear our hair out, but besides that, I think it’s also because she doesn’t know quite how to process the dream. The first one she has is familiar to her: Joffrey dying at his wedding feast. However, it becomes even more terrifying and awful when she realises that it’s Robb who’s dying. So this is a dream of death, moving from someone she hates to someone that she’s personally connected to, her brother. The second dream with Sandor and Tyrion follows the same pattern. She begins by dreaming of Tyrion and him devouring her with his eyes. We know from her POV chapter just how much this night terrified her, and just how much she was not interested in having Tyrion as a bed partner. But Tyrion goes the way of Joffrey as well, and is replaced by someone she has a much more personal bond with, someone who does represent a sexual threat to her – not in the way of men like Marillion, but where her own body and mind might be beginning to betray her attraction to Sandor. Death and desire are entangled in Sansa’s dreams that night, and it’s no wonder that when she wakes her first thought upon seeing the old dog is to wish for Lady.

The chapter comes to a close with Lysa and Sansa’s conversation. LF has informed her aunt of who she really is, and although Lysa at first appears to be kind and thoughtful, she soon lashes out, telling Sansa to admit if she’s with child. Sansa tells her that Tyrion never touched her and that he had his whores, choosing not to describe her husband as “kind” based on Lysa’s clear hatred for the man. Lysa asks her if she would like to marry her son, Lord Robert:

The thought made Sansa weary. All she knew of Robert Arryn was that he was a little boy, and sickly. It is not me she wants her son to marry, it is my claim. No one will ever marry me for love. But lying came easy to her now. “I can scarcely wait to meet him, my lady. But he is still a child, is he not?”

Sansa’s disillusionment at the end of the chapter is aligned with her ability to lie much easier. She realises that Lysa isn’t genuinely interested in her welfare as a person, but only wants to use her again, like the Lannisters did. It’s a crushing awareness that Sansa has to bear, given what we know of her thoughts on love and marriage. She wants someone to love her, but is coming to the belief that no one will. The persons that she should have been able to count on have either gone away or are there to further exploit her. Still, if this is the world that Sansa has to exist in, she’s at least prepared to meet it with her game on. She’s just as good a liar now as everyone else around her.

*whew!* the end :)

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Wonderful summary brashcandy! It's a chapter that inspires much thought. :)

I want to briefly touch on a few things you mentioned, and will come back to the rest of them later. I want to get this out as I'm afraid the board will go down again, because I'm having a lot of issues with it right now. :angry:

I'm afraid my post might be rather long too, but first, my comments on a few things that you mentioned.

“My grandfather’s shield … His own father was born in Braavos and came to the Vale as a sellsword in the hire of Lord Corbray, so my grandfather took the head of the Titan as his sigil when he was knighted.”

“It’s very fierce,” said Sansa.

“Rather too fierce, for an amiable fellow like me,” said Petyr. “I much prefer my mockingbird.”

So here we have the biggest clue that LF might be the savage giant that the maid with the purple serpents in her hair kills. But it’s interesting that the actual image on the shield is of a grey stone head.

I believe it's possible this is foreshadowing the giant that Sansa is supposed to slay in a castle of snow. Could the "giant" (i.e. titan) represent Petyr? I think there's a chance it might be.

You do have an interesting view on Bran's dream, with the stone giant possibly being LF and the black blood symbolizing the "darkness" inside him. I hadn't thought of that!

I do think Martin wants us to appreciate that Sansa’s inherent personality is one that might always believe in or at least yearn for true love. If this remains so, she may indeed find it very difficult to commit to another political marriage.

:agree:

My crackpot: Sansa often prays to the mother, the maiden and the crone. It’s interesting that here she meets a mother, Kella, and an old woman Martin chooses to refer to as a crone, and a little girl who could represent the maiden. Might this stony bleak island play a larger part in Sansa’s future?

Good point! That's something else I hadn't thought of. I certainly hope she doesn't get stuck there, in the land of dung fires and sheep pellets! Bleh! :ack:

Also, let me just say, LF doesn’t deserve these servants. They all come across as good natured and honest people, and whilst they clearly like LF and he does them, it’s noticeable that he thinks they are beneath him, and his insecurities over his birth come out repeatedly in his jokes over the humble life on the island

Glad I wasn't the only one who noticed he seemed to have thinly veiled contempt for these people.

Now for the long post of mine.

First, this passage caught my attention:

Pomegranate seeds were so messy; Sansa chose a pear instead, and took a small delicate bite. It was very ripe. The juice ran down her chin.

Lord Petyr loosened a seed with the point of his dagger. “You must miss your father terribly, I know. Lord Eddard was a brave man, honest and loyal… but quite a hopeless player.”

He brought the seed to his mouth with the knife. “In King’s Landing, there are two sorts of people. The players and the pieces.”

“And I was a piece?” She dreaded the answer.

“Yes, but don’t let that trouble you. You’re still half a child. Every man’s a piece to start with, and every maid as well. Even some who think they are players.”

He ate another seed. “Cersei, for one. She thinks herself sly, but in truth she is utterly predictable. Her strength rests on her beauty, birth, and riches. Only the first of those is truly her own, and it will soon desert her. I pity her then. She wants power, but has no notion what to do with it when she gets it. Everyone wants something, Alayne. And when you know what a man wants you know who he is, and how to move him.”

“As you moved Ser Dontos to poison Joffrey?” It had to have been Dontos, she had concluded. Littlefinger laughed.

“Ser Dontos the Red was a skin of wine with legs. He could never have been trusted with a task of such enormity. He would have bungled it or betrayed me. No, all Dontos had to do was lead you from the castle… and make certain you wore your silver hair net.”

" The black amethysts. But… if not Dontos, who? Do you have other… pieces?”

And we have this passage as well :

“Tell me, Alayne—which is more dangerous, the dagger brandished by an enemy, or the hidden one pressed to your back by someone you never even see?”

“The hidden dagger.”

“There’s a clever girl.” He smiled, his thin lips bright red from the pomegranate seeds.

Alright, I admit this may sound a little "crackpot-ish", but here goes. Above we see Petyr eating pomegranate seeds, which can stain things red, including his lips.

They're also talking about the poison black amethysts (a.k.a. the Strangler Crystals). Earlier in ACOK, they are mentioned by Maester Cressen as being like "little seeds" in appearance. I'm thinking Petyr's red lips are foreshadowing blood and indicating Sansa using the black amethysts left over in the hairnet/snood to poison Petyr, thus killing him.

In the passage above, he mentioned the hidden dagger being the most dangerous one, and that dagger might turn out to be Sansa herself. (Being the enemy he never saw/expected). Would she kill him? Could she? She might get to that point if she learns he's been pulling strings behind the scenes, and what he's essentially done to her family, destroying them.

EDIT: Forgot to put this in the first go-round: The quote about the hidden dagger also reminds me of the time Sandor met Sansa in her chambers after the Battle of the Blackwater. He pulled a dagger out in front of her, holding it to her throat. However, I don't see Sandor as Sansa's "enemy". I'm just noting the play on words in that particular quote.

I hope that Sansa can turn the following words around on LF: " And when you know what a man wants you know who he is, and how to move him.”

This little bit also caught my attention, when Sansa and LF are talking about the Black Amethysts.

"So one of the Kettleblacks put the poison in Joff ‘s cup?”

Ser Osmund had been near the king all night, she remembered.

“Did I say that?” Lord Petyr cut the blood orange in two with his dagger and offered half to Sansa. “The lads are far too treacherous to be part of any such scheme… and Osmund has become especially unreliable since he joined the Kingsguard. That white cloak does things to a man, I find. Even a man like him.”

He tilted his chin back and squeezed the blood orange, so the juice ran down into his mouth. “I love the juice but I loathe the sticky fingers,” he complained, wiping his hands. “Clean hands, Sansa. Whatever you do, make certain your hands are clean.” Sansa spooned up some juice from her own orange.

I thought that the comment Petyr made about the white cloak was very telling. Osmund did try to comfort her before her wedding to Tyrion.

Could this also have a meaning for another certain someone else who wore that white cloak?

Now for some of my investigative work. There is some curious symbolism tied to the fruit we see in this chapter. Earlier upthread, brashcandy mentioned Christianity.

Well, the ancient Greeks regarded the pomegranate as a symbol of prosperity and ambition (I feel this symbolizes LF).

If anyone knows their mythology, also very interesting are the stories about Persephone (also known as The Maiden), being abducted by Hades (The King of the Underworld), carrying her off to be his bride. The long and short of it, is that he tricks her into eating pomegranate seeds which then requires her to spend six months out of the year there with him, which in a way, kind of parallels Sansa's ordeal with LF. She believes he's taking her home to Winterfell, but in reality she gets tricked into going to the Eyrie. (At least Sansa didn't eat any seeds though!)

However, you will notice she did eat a pear. Pears are supposed to be symbols of Hera & Aphrodite. Hera being vengeful against people who crossed her (watch out Petyr!) and Aphrodite, the goddess of love and beauty.

This bit of information about Aphrodite I find highly ironic, and I don't think this can be a coincidence (quoting various places now) :

.....because of her beauty other gods feared that jealousy would interrupt the peace among them and lead to war, (I'm thinking the War of the Five Kings, though Sansa indirectly had something to do with it) and so Zeus married her to Hephaestus (God of Fire and Craftsmenship, like a metalsmith or blacksmith, I believe--in Roman mythos he is Vulcan, the God of Fire & Smithery).

Hephaestus was lame and is usually depicted with crippled feet and a misshapen, ugly appearance.

Aphrodite had many lovers, one of them was Anchises who apparently liked to breed horses.

In regards to what's said about both these men, I'm drawing a lot of parallels to Tyrion, as well as Willas Tyrell, as this is said about him: "Though crippled with a bad leg, he is often noted as a studious, educated, and kind, and is renowned for breeding the finest hawks, hounds, and horses in the Seven Kingdoms."

I know this one is a bit ahead of where we are but... There's also one to Harrold Hardyng (a.k.a. Harry the Heir) "Gossip holds that, despite his youth, Hardyng has already fathered at least one baseborn child with another on the way", and Anchises is said to already have a wife and had a child by her.

Annnnnd .... another one of Aphrodite's lovers was Ares...

Ares is the God of War, and his symbol is a dog. I don't think that one needs any explaining. :D

(FYI: Aphrodite and Ares are caught together by Hephaestus, who was persuaded to free them in return for a guarantee that Ares would pay the adulterer's fine.)

But apparently Aphrodite and Ares had six children together. (Four sons and two girls). One girl Harmonia, as beautiful as Aphrodite herself, and the other the youngest child, Adrestia, who is known to accompany her father Ares to war.

I'm seeing parallels to Sansa and Arya themselves here. And there is the fact that when Sansa fantasizes about being married with children, she sees a little girl that looks like Arya, not to mention that when travelling with Sandor (and killing), Arya is often mistaken for his son or his daughter.

The other four boys could represent Sansa's brothers, (Robb, Jon, Brandon, Rickon). :

In Sansa’s dreams, her children looked just like the brothers she had lost. Sometimes there was even a girl who looked like Arya.

Anyway, I thought those little bits were at least worthy of a note. If GRRM deliberately seeds this series with all these little "tie-ins", no wonder if takes him so long to write them! :laugh:

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Wonderful post QoW! :) I'm really excited by the connections you made with the Greek mythology. Very very interesting. Hmmm, Jaime Lannister also states that the best thing for Sansa might be to be to marry a blacksmith and forget she was ever Sansa Stark or something like that. Sandor as the God of War and the relationship shared with Aphrodite is also intriguing. Of course we know that Martin also tweaks and twists his sources, and Sandor looks like he has a lame leg as well now, and might not be so gung-ho on war and battle anymore.

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Wonderful post QoW! :) I'm really excited by the connections you made with the Greek mythology. Very very interesting. Hmmm, Jaime Lannister also states that the best thing for Sansa might be to be to marry a blacksmith and forget she was ever Sansa Stark or something like that.

Yes, he does! (I think it's in AFFC?). Dammit, I always forget to put something in my posts! :laugh:

Sandor as the God of War and the relationship shared with Aphrodite is also intriguing. Of course we know that Martin also tweaks and twists his sources, and Sandor looks like he has a lame leg as well now, and might not be so gung-ho on war and battle anymore.

Oh, Martin totally twists everything! And true, we do have a lame dog right now. ;)

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Nice post Brashcandy, :)

These chapters are such interesting ones!!!

About the foreshadowing of the “the Fingers are a lovely place, if you happen to be stone” lines, it certainly seems to mean that Alayne Stone could come to like this place at some point. Sansa could poison Littlefinger with the black amethysts she has left , and since she is, as Alayne Stone, the only direct family that Petyr Baelish has, she could end up inheriting the Fingers and go live there for some time. The Fingers may be a very small and quiet place, but its remoteness can definitely work as an advantage for someone whose head is wanted as Sansa (or Sandor). She could stay there while constructing her mastermind plan on how to take over the Seven Kingdoms… :devil:

On another matter, I always really liked Sansa’s horny dream! :drunk:

Brashcandy, you are not alone to have an unexplainable urge to dance and scream while reading this scene.

:lmao: Hahahaha! Sansa might not know it yet, but she is now attracted to Sandor Clegane. Her thing for him worked as a time bomb: while he was with her, she did appreciate him in some ways, but never anything more then that. Now that he’s gone, she keeps thinking about him, and she definitely seemed disappointed that it was Lothor Brune that saved her from Marillion and not Sandor, even if she knew that it was impossible.

For now, her desire for him is mostly unconscious, but I’m sure she will start to recognize it for what it is soon. If you think about it, she may never have lived those feelings before since her crushes on Joffrey and Loras where innocent and childish and had nothing to do with being truly in love with someone. It’s normal that she doesn’t understand them right away, especially since Sandor, at first look, has nothing to do with the kind of men she had always envisioned she would end up with. She will probably be the first surprised when she’ll finally admit to herself that she’s in love with him. :lol: I definitely want to read that!!!

Lastly, I always thought that after the horny dream, when Sansa wakes up and tells the old dog that she wished he was Lady, she might unconsciously think of Sandor since he is Lady’s replacement… Well, that’s what I want to believe! :drunk:

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Great analysis, Brash! It was a long chapter, so my answer is a bit too long, :blush: SORRY, but I’ll try to do justice to it :) & QoW, i agree with you that the white cloak may have very well done something to Sandor. The something was always there, but sansa’s constant abuse and the white cloak changed him. he says something like this himself, “I stood there on my white cloak and let them beat her.” so he is aware of it.

Nice to see Sansa recalling her fashion sense with the comment of lothor brune cause she reminded me of the sansa from the first book. I know I ought to wait till mya comes along in sansa’s chapters, but I just wanted to make notice that I think one of the reasons why George had lothor having a thing for mya and in some ways being like the hound (strong, older than twenty, quiet, likes his drinking but does the job well) were to have sansa realize that a pretty girl like mya could be happy with a man whom she never thought she would even like back in the first book (mya had another lover, handsome and young) so that sansa can subconsciously think that she had herself her own protector once… but I think lothor’s loyalty is either meant for LF or mya, not sansa. He might help snasa though if mya asked him to…

She is having an awful time aboard the ship (which I once thought was the exact same ship that takes arya to bravos) but she does managed to gather her thoughts were Tyrion is concerned at least. But then LF comes along to try and make her believe he is now the only one she ought to trust. I wonder though, we know that LF probably began to plan sansa’s escape from KL after sansa saved dontos, so what did he think would happen with him and cat after the war ended, and if the starks were the winners? The red wedding is still too far away, so did he only meant to keep sansa safe so that in the end cat (a widow now) would be eternally gratefull with him for saving her daughter & decided to marry him at long last??

I don’t think LF knows Tyrion was tricked regarding tysha so I can accept that he is telling sansa not to shed a tear for a husband that was capable of doing that to his first wife. We know differently, but by recalling what sansa tells us later on, I don’t think she cared for Tyrion that much to either be angry or disgusted or sad about what happened with tysha. That issue is not much on her thoughts so I guess that’s another hint that she will never come to be in love with the imp.

But agree Brash that LF really is a creeper. i am in a way relieved he isn’t a point of view character so. It spares us the sight of his creepy clever mind. He must spend hours thinking about his moves both in the game and with sansa. One consolation is that while he is trying to make sansa stop caring about dontos or Tyrion so he can get all her concern, we know that he won’t get his heart’s desire.

Given Sansa’s reaction to the Fingers I think that she wouldn’t be that happy living her days in “exile” as Alayne stone in the future. But since LF himself hates it would be ironic if sansa ended up living here happily for the rest of her days, far from the court she once longed to be a part of, & the court LF preferred over his dismal origins. littlefinger certainly has the gall to act as if he is puzzled cause sansa might be mad at him for not taking her north! The gumption of the man here makes me so angry! And poor sansa, she may want to yell at him that she is sick of being lied to and does not want to go to the Fingers, but since she has no one else to trust, no means to get north by herself, she has to yet again hide her true feelings (though I’m sure LF knows they’re there) and accept meekly in a way that she isn’t going north any time soon.

It’s sad that Sansa is believing that LF took Cat’s maidenhead in a way, but I like how she still thinks of being in love with marriage, as brash mentioned earlier. George has left sansa keep her innocence after all that she’s been through, so it must count for something important in the future. And yes, she may not want to marry again for political gain (we see this when she does not want to marry sweetrobin) but maybe she won’t have to? Maybe she will just remain married to Tyrion- hopefully not!

And LF being the giant- another reason why George is such a splendid storyteller. When I first read the books I thought the giant would be Gregor. But after several re-reads we have the most unlikely people imaginable being the possible giant: Tyrion & LF. In the long run, and seeing as things currently stand (meaning that if Tyrion does not return to Westeros all grim and wanting to force sansa to stay married to him for the pure political gain of it) I would love to have sansa destroy LF. Cat would be nice too, but her family’s downfall is in due thanks to the Lannisters, the booltons, LF, whereas sansa (now that joff is dead and cersei is in an uncertain place regarding power) is personally linked to LF, so a revengeful act on her part may happen one day. I’m still not sure if I would like sansa being a murderess, and she isn’t that revengeful, but it’s an option that can very well happen.

Good remark about Sansa being all pious and religious with Tyrion without anyone advising her to do it, only to have LF (the great master of pretenses) saying this to her. another foreshadowing that sansa could be an even better liar than him one day.

I don’t like LF asking sansa if she likes games. We know he won’t care if she answers that she doesn’t and wants to go home, so he is just playing around with her. I like the name alayne, but I guess playing the game would depend on the rules. Like killing maybe or losing her maidenhead? I don’t know, but I guess she would willingly play it if her family was concerned.

Interesting stuff regarding fruit, LF’s downfall, sansa’s sexual future and her decision to keep her integrity. And also about Saint Catherine: hmmm, yes a lot of similarities. My best friend thinks that sansa will end up being a sort of virgin queen, but I don’t want that so don’t want sansa to be rejected by the man she loved or wants like we see cathering was. I could see aegon doing this to her over danny, but not that much. Sansa is beautiful but she is not cersei, so she is not vain and proud about her looks and how she is better than all others. So I don’t want her to have to redeem herself in order to be able to be with her love. Curiously, Sandor is indeed possibly doing this! He may be at the QI trying to atone for his past behavior and make himself more worthy of sansa, so…

Back to the chapter. I love how LF is advising sansa with things that she may possibly use against him in the future. When he says, “Everyone wants something, Alayne. And when you know what a man wants you know who he is, and how to move him.” Well, it just makes me think that one day sansa may be willing to let LF think he has a chance with her only to have her do something similar to what LF did with lysa by the moondoor. Knowing what happens in future chapters I always wonder how such a smart man as LF can act so stupid sometimes when it comes to sansa. Meaning, considering what happens in the next chapter and what I mentioned him quoting above, doesn’t it occur to him that she may one day be his downfall..? I guess it’s lucky that he doesn’t.

Sansa adapts to the Alayne persona quite quickly, so maybe this is cause since she can’t be a Stark at present and she is desperate to leave the Lady Lannister title behind, she likes the bastard name so much…?

Poor Lysa. I’ll leave my thoughts about her for the next analysis though. & yes, I also think that the old dog is meant to represent in a way Sandor, and possibly even Lady, warging, and Sansa’s connection with these 3. The bedding now, how sad that so far she hasn’t got what the young sansa once longed for: marrying a man she loves, the bedding, exchaing the cloaks). If she can think lysa is in a way pretty when she looks at petyr, it could be cause she also likes the hound, whom she once said was no knight of flowers. Once again we see she still has illusions despite all. She may not want to marry again for the present, but the thought of being with a man she loves is shockingly pleasant to hear from sansa stark.

The dream she has of sandor, and thinking of him while she hears her aunt screaming with pleasure only make me more certain that one day, when they are both ready, sandor and sansa will have an intimate relationship. And yes, the sad old hound may not be able to perform his duties anymore, so when Sandor leaves the QI, if he is limping, the world could think that he is better off dead now since he no longer has the only good quality everyone thought he had. But sansa, being sansa, can look into deeper parts of humans and animals, so she won’t care if sandor is limping. She’ll love him all the same.

Hate marmillion, but like lothor saving her. could mean that one day sandor will save her from LF?? Gosh, I know right, why is GRRM torturing us with no real lengthy reactions from sansa regarding sandor and his increasing role in her subconscious mind? We can only hope that in the 6th book, sansa will have a better understanding regarding her sexual desires thanks to mya and randa (sorry for skipping ahead!) I can see her telling them about the unnkiss in a way she couldn’t tell the tyrell cousins back in KL. She is alayne now of course, but that does not prevent her from describing the sort of man she thinks kissed her. she doesn’t have to state it was the famous Hound.

Of course she does not want to marry sweetrobin. She isn’t meant to be his wife, but rather a mother figure. This reminds me of the talk some threads back where sansa was compared to the Mother in the 7. But more on that for AFFC. i think sansa is at last being able to realize tyrion was a kind man to her cause the threat of having him near and claiming his husbandly duties is not around. But if he ever returns to westeros then I expect her to once again place her personal taste above his previous nice treatment of her. she may now not be in winterell, but at least she’s escaped the lannisters. Not sure still if living near LF is better than living at a court where joff would no longer exist though..? by the end of the chapter we see that sansa has matured, possibly cause of her alayne identity, but maybe also cause now that she is free from the intoxicating life and golden cage she had been trapped in for so long, she is able to quickly mature mentally what she couldn’t while she was under the lannister oppression? This could also mean that now that she is free from KL and her husband, she can once again freely let her mind wonder about Sandor..?

Hope it all made sense, apologies for it being so long but I love this chapter cause of her connection to sandor, so i just had to write down my thoughts :)

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@Caro- I think that LF had already decided to "steal" Sansa away from the very first book when he met her, and Dontos was only the best means to do so. Over the years he had long given up on having Cat as a lover, but he was still carrying the deep seated obsession and resentment over everything Cat represented. Seeing Sansa again is his chance for a do-over, and we learn from Cersei in ADWD that he offered to marry the girl when all the mess started with her father's capture and death.

I'm like you in that I don't want to see Sansa as a Virgin Queen, but I suppose it is one route her arc could take given her disillusionment with marriage as a means to make land grabs and secure claims.

The Fingers is a desolate place, but I really got the sense that Sansa could be happy there eventually, if she had an old dog by her side ;) and like Maroucia noted above, the remoteness of the island would serve really well to conceal persons whose heads were wanted for crimes in Westeros.

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Now, do you guys remember the Hidden Symbolism of Fruit in Renaissance Painting that I had posted in one of the earlier FPTP threads?

I was lurking on the board for quite a while before joining, but what is the FPTP thread? (And where is it?) I'm curious!

What is the deal-breaker for Sansa when it comes to game playing?

Unfortunately, we don't know what will push her to her limits, when it comes to LF. What will be the thing that makes her finally sit up and take notice about the game he's really playing? I don't think she fully understands what he's doing (and rightfully so, as she's still young). It's a scary place for her to be in right now. She has no friends, no one who has her best interest at heart-- not even her own family. She has no one to rely on except herself.

Later on during their conversation, Sansa does accept half of a blood orange from LF, but according to the source on the fruit symbolism--orange -Symbol of free will.

I think oranges can also symbolize marriage too, no? I thought it curious that they both only drank the juice of the fruit and didn't partake of its flesh.

I’ve always thought that the old dog is meant to represent Sandor Clegane and the relationship she came to share with him (and may yet still). Although theirs was a lot more complex and tortured than the one she enjoys with the actual dog, they basically came to enjoy a closeness and connection on the night when she touched his shoulder after hearing of what Gregor had done to him. Sandor as is he now may be closer to the state of the old blind dog, as we don’t know if he’s retained his fighting skills after the leg injury. (Brienne notes in AFFC that the gravedigger walks with a kind of lurching gait)

Yes, I've always thought this as well. It seems wherever she goes, Sansa always manages to find dogs! :D

Again, we’re seeing the importance Sansa places on love in a relationship. She’s able to realise the sincere affection Lysa holds for LF and how it transforms even her appearance and her behaviour. For Sansa herself, she’s showing signs of growing up, being able to contemplate getting undressed for a man and it not being unpleasant if she was in love with him.

Love can definitely transform a person, for better (or worse!). But yes, this shows that Sansa is maturing in regards to how she views adult relationships, and how she might feel if she was with the right man.

And remember what Cersei told her about love? "Love is poison. A sweet poison, yes, but it will kill you all the same.”

Sandor’s relationship with the dog also illustrates the compassion and kindness she shows to those who have been hurt and/or rejected by society. The dog is no longer able to perform its duties, but it finds a friend in Sansa and vice versa. When Marillion appears, the dog immediately senses the danger and growls at the man, but is sent off whimpering after being kicked by the singer.

Remember how Sandor said to Arya: " Even a dog gets tired of being kicked."

However Sandor’s importance in her life wasn’t simply as a protector. It is, based on Sansa’s thoughts and dreams, a hellava lot more complicated: with Sansa expressing IMO both conscious and unconscious desire and longing for the man.

OMG, tons more complicated! Spot on,brashcandy, you say things better than I ever could!

Ok, so in trying to give you an analysis of this dream (when all I want to do is a happy dance and scream) it’s strange that we get absolutely no reaction from Sansa on it.

On another matter, I always really liked Sansa’s horny dream! Brashcandy, you are not alone to have an unexplainable urge to dance and scream while reading this scene.

@ brash & Maroucia -- It seems like we're all in good company! :laugh: :blush:

Like Maroucia stated, I don't think that Sansa is consciously aware of how she feels about Sandor. It's there on some deep level though.

Death and desire are entangled in Sansa’s dreams that night, and it’s no wonder that when she wakes her first thought upon seeing the old dog is to wish for Lady.

Those are two very powerful emotions. Combine that with what went on earlier that night and her new surroundings, I'm sure that dream unsettled her.

She will probably be the first surprised when she’ll finally admit to herself that she’s in love with him. I definitely want to read that!!!

Hell, I'd like to see Sandor's reaction to that! :o :lol:

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Sansa as a virgin queen= :crying: :bawl: :bang:

That won't happen if she keeps having horny dreams though! :leer:

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@ QoW - FPTP - from pawn to player ;) It was in thread 2 I think.

Oh man, do I feel like a :dunce: . Why didn't I realize that? <_<

Thanks, brash. I'll check it out. :)

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