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wolfmaid7

The Cold, The Wight and The Wight Walker

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The children certainly helped the last of the 13 heroes, but in the context of Bran's recollection (hearing that his Uncle Benjen was missing beyond the Wall) that was helping save him from his immediate pursuers.

I realize it's a story from Nan, who is not perfect. But it clearly references the first men seeking out the CotF in order to defeat the Others.

According to the story, when the armies of men had lost, a team set out to find the CotF in hopes that their magic could defeat the Others. When all but one man died, and the Others were about to kill him, under unknown circumstances he was saved by the CotF. In the end, we know that men win and drive the others north.

Now this is just a story, but it can't be completely discounted. It is reference to the CotF assisting men against the others. We do not know the nature of the assistance, but it was assistance.

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I'm going to go out on a limb here and say, regardless of GRRM's good/evil ambiguity, that anything that leads armies of the dead is at least mostly evil. :cool4:

As of now outside of Old Nan's tale which is not an eye witness account, but an ambiguous oral retelling we have no proof that the WW's led an army of the dead "against" mankind.This is the typical, seeing vultures on a carcass and assuming they did the kill.Sam had an encounter with one such WW on the fist,and the WW saw him and did not attack him.What we are are certain of is that the Wights ravished the kingdoms of men.

To call the WW evil just because they lead dead people is stereotyping :lol: they just trying to do a job man.A job that will become difficult because there won't be enough of them to take care of the huge amount of dead that will be in the realm due to fighting and disease.Plus the fact that they will be hindered by the wall and those left there.Dark days ahead.

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Well thought out theory.

I think one of the main challenges to a theory like this is less about the evidence to support it and more that from a readership perspective it would simply blow far too many people's mind for an editor to allow it to happen.

GRRM "then it turns out it wasn't the lannisters, or Mel or Dany & the dragons or the white walkers or even the wights. It was the cold all along"

Editor " woah George, you can't do that people just won't get it and they will complain the ending sucks"

Now GRRM is certainly one to throw a curveball so it's not beyond him but I just think not enough people would get it. It would go beyond a twist into a eh?

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As of now outside of Old Nan's tale which is not an eye witness account, but an ambiguous oral retelling we have no proof that the WW's led an army of the dead "against" mankind.This is the typical, seeing vultures on a carcass and assuming they did the kill.Sam had an encounter with one such WW on the fist,and the WW saw him and did not attack him.What we are are certain of is that the Wights ravished the kingdoms of men.

To call the WW evil just because they lead dead people is stereotyping :lol: they just trying to do a job man.A job that will become difficult because there won't be enough of them to take care of the huge amount of dead that will be in the realm due to fighting and disease.Plus the fact that they will be hindered by the wall and those left there.Dark days ahead.

Can you please quote text on the "WW left Sam alone" thing? I remember it in the show (Which didn't make sense from the ending of one season to the beginning of the next) but was there a similar scene in the books where the WW look at Sam, then leave him alone?

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I realize it's a story from Nan, who is not perfect. But it clearly references the first men seeking out the CotF in order to defeat the Others.

According to the story, when the armies of men had lost, a team set out to find the CotF in hopes that their magic could defeat the Others. When all but one man died, and the Others were about to kill him, under unknown circumstances he was saved by the CotF. In the end, we know that men win and drive the others north.

Now this is just a story, but it can't be completely discounted. It is reference to the CotF assisting men against the others. We do not know the nature of the assistance, but it was assistance.

AGOT Bran's 4th Chapter:

"Fear is for the long night when the sun hides its face and little children are born and live and die all in darkness while direwolves grow guant and hungry and the White Walkers move through the woods.

"You mean the Others," Bran said.

"The Others Old Nan agreed".

Again due to lacking eye witness account Old Nan's tale lack specificity in who the who did what. I think the terminology of "The Others" need to be examined for it is a typical human trait to lump everything we don't understand as " the others",yet lack the understanding of who make up the Others ? Are the entities that are grouped as such allied with each other,indifferent of each other what?

The above quote is a perfect example on how the WWs could have been grouped with the Wights unfairly.

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Can you please quote text on the "WW left Sam alone" thing? I remember it in the show (Which didn't make sense from the ending of one season to the beginning of the next) but was there a similar scene in the books where the WW look at Sam, then leave him alone?

I'm looking for it now give me a few min :) It was more a scene from the show,so that may not be cannon,But i'm looking for it to make sure.

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I realize it's a story from Nan, who is not perfect. But it clearly references the first men seeking out the CotF in order to defeat the Others.

According to the story, when the armies of men had lost, a team set out to find the CotF in hopes that their magic could defeat the Others. When all but one man died, and the Others were about to kill him, under unknown circumstances he was saved by the CotF. In the end, we know that men win and drive the others north.

Now this is just a story, but it can't be completely discounted. It is reference to the CotF assisting men against the others. We do not know the nature of the assistance, but it was assistance.

The problem is that we don't actually know that men win and drive the others north. Here's the relevant bit from Old Nan's story:

So as cold and death filled the earth, the last hero determined to seek out the children, in the hopes that their ancient magics could win back what the armies of men had lost. He set out into the dead lands with a sword, a horse, a dog, and a dozen companions. For years he searched, until he despaired of ever finding the children of the forest in their secret cities. One by one his friends died, and his horse, and finally even his dog, and his sword froze so hard the blade snapped when he tried to use it. And the Others smelled the hot blood in him, and came silent on his trail, stalking him with packs of pale white spiders big as hounds-

If we break this down, the 12 heroes set off into the "dead lands" to try and find the Children in the hope their magic would win back what the armies of men had lost.

Leaving aside the fact the Children obviously didn't want to be found and had so far been taking no part in the fight; hence the initial defeats and then the years of looking afterwards, we have this business of the "dead lands", which suggests that they set off from a part of Westeros not overrun by the blue-eyed lot and journeyed into an area which had been devastated. Where, curiously, the children were hiding rather than in "free" Westeros.

Now if we then look at present Westeros we find two areas which match this; first there is the North as defined by the Neck and the Wall - an area notably thinly peopled despite evidence such as the barrowlands of a once larger population. Then move beyond the Wall and we find evidence of lost kingdoms; the Thenns being the obvious one, but also other traces like the Fist of the First Men, and the Wildlings themselves.

Now whatever happened after the Children stayed the Last Hero's pursuers, the North may have been recovered but not the lands beyond the Wall. The blue-eyed lot still walk there - and so do the Children

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Can you please quote text on the "WW left Sam alone" thing? I remember it in the show (Which didn't make sense from the ending of one season to the beginning of the next) but was there a similar scene in the books where the WW look at Sam, then leave him alone?

It was from the show,just found it. The dead had attacked them on the fist later and after the attack while they were among the trees they met the WW.

Its interesting that the WW wasn't leading any dead,he was alone, he may have been going after the horde on the fist.Pretty much the same thing that happened when Waymar saw the WW happened.Small Paul pulled an axe on him,Sam eventually killed him with the Obsidian Dagger.

I hope we get to see one day when nobody draws first against a WW, what would happen.

ASOS P.251

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It was from the show,just found it. The dead had attacked them on the fist later and after the attack while they were among the trees they met the WW.

Its interesting that the WW wasn't leading any dead,he was alone, he may have been going after the horde on the fist.Pretty much the same thing that happened when Waymar saw the WW happened.Small Paul pulled an axe on him,Sam eventually killed him with the Obsidian Dagger.

I hope we get to see one day when nobody draws first against a WW, what would happen.

ASOS P.251

Somehow I doubt he confronted Small Paul and Sam just to stare at them if they didn't pull a weapon... That show scene is a ridiculous attempt at a cliffhanger which is never resolved, we probably shouldn't cite it as canon. Thank you for attempting to find the passage though. :cheers:

The best thing about this thread for me is you've introduced "The Cold" as a character in and of itself, which has piqued my interest.

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Well thought out theory.

I think one of the main challenges to a theory like this is less about the evidence to support it and more that from a readership perspective it would simply blow far too many people's mind for an editor to allow it to happen.

GRRM "then it turns out it wasn't the lannisters, or Mel or Dany & the dragons or the white walkers or even the wights. It was the cold all along"

Editor " woah George, you can't do that people just won't get it and they will complain the ending sucks"

Now GRRM is certainly one to throw a curveball so it's not beyond him but I just think not enough people would get it. It would go beyond a twist into a eh?

More to it it shows that as usual humans have a tendency to demonize anything different and to them incomprehensible. The Cold is part of the environment it and the WWs have always been a part of the landscape .It is man who is out of balance with nature in truth.All the people and other factors you mention just goes to making things worst.

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Somehow I doubt he confronted Small Paul and Sam just to stare at them if they didn't pull a weapon... That show scene is a ridiculous attempt at a cliffhanger which is never resolved, we probably shouldn't cite it as canon. Thank you for attempting to find the passage though. :cheers:

The best thing about this thread for me is you've introduced "The Cold" as a character in and of itself, which has piqued my interest.

I think he just came upon them as he was tracking the horde,but its just amazing that through this entire series we have yet to see them outright attack anyone.Every encounter there is that sense that yeah they seem menacing but you're not sure.Not speaking the language is a disadvantage,something the COTF smartly did in the form of Leaf. I'm not saying that Small Paul and the others were wrong for drawing, i would have thrown an axe to to be honest,just because i'd be haunted by the stories i grew up with . But it goes to show that the WW have been propped up to be so scary, that is all anyone sees when they encounter them.

I'm not sure wheter or not the WW are enslaved to the Cold or the COTF or if they are acting of their own free will.Whatever the answer is,they are the key to dealing with the Wights.

I don't think anything can be done about "the Cold" from where i stand,there is a lot of evidence to show that it is something separate.How to deal with something you can't see? I'm not touching that one.

Thanks for your input though very much.

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Which would make sense if anyone actually understood the WW. Dragons have been documented, studied, trained, bred, etc. There is nothing in the text which leads us to believe that they are the cold equivalents of Dragon save for the fact that one is hot and one is cold.

Like I said, I agree the 'The Cold' is the real enemy and that the WW are misunderstood in the greater context though clearly antagonistic and clearly real (not superstition).

One of the things GRRM does extremely well is to present characters and choices as gray. There is no true evil or pure good. So in that sense I think the Cold/WW/dead have their own perspective which hopefully is explored in WoW.

Why is the "cold" any more the "enemy" than fire? And why the Others clearly antagonistic, whereas Dragons aren't? As far as we know, dragons can be controlled by blood magic, items infused by blood magic (horns notably), and by High Valyrian spoken by people with sufficiently pure Valyrian blood (again, magical in origin). So in essence, dragons are intelligent, highly hostile, highly dangerous magical creatures which embody one element of the fire/ice dichotomy.

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:agree:

2 things refute this theory:

1) As Fernando pointed out, the Prologue in GoT leads you to believe otherwise. (great name btw, is Carlos Danger stalking this community too??)

2) End of HBO Season 2 leads you to believe otherwise. There you clearly see the WW's leading the Wights :) to the wall. Clearly they are in command of the dead things.

I think the real question is 'why' does the cold come, why do the WW's come with the cold, why didn't they come like this during previous winters?

Which comes first the cold or the WW's? I believe we can answer this. The cold comes and then the under certain conditions the WW's can come. And there seems to something about the severity of those conditions which dictates the magnitude of the WW's force. How often does Westeros get a real winter once every 7-10? If the WW's came every winter the NW's would be better prepared and we would know more about them. As it is, Sam has to dig through volumes of dusty ancient books to even read any account of WW's.

So I agree that the Cold and the WW's and the Wights are separate. Something unknown causes the Cold to come and when it does the WW's grow in power. When the Cold comes, dead things rise. I think you are right that the Cold creates the Wights, but I think the WW's can control the dead who have been reanimated in this manner. I dont think they are herding, they are leading, preparing for battle.

The great mystery which i hope is uncovered in WoW is what is the unknown cause of the Cold. Why now? Why to this extent? I believe Bran/Bloodraven/CotF are going to discover that and hopefully how to defeat it.

The only thing the prologue in AGOT shows when it comes to the WWs aggressive behavior is that they are passive aggressive.However,they are keen on fighting if pushed to that.

What was shown on HBO at the end of season 2 may have been done for dramatic effect,but leading the dead to the wall doesn't mean attacking it.All we saw is a WW at the head of a column of Wights,plus that seen as i said wasn't in the books.I'm deduced they are following "the Cold" south to where the most death will be taking place.

I think from the text the WW come because of "the cold" and it ( the cold" ) itself is attracted to death or impending death. Westeros is in upheaval,fighting,hunger and disease with the winter coming and "the Cold" heading south the weak will die and they will rise.Without the WWs in the south to cart off the dead from the survivors more people will die.

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The Sam chapter in ASOS describing the encounter with the "Other" makes the Other sound very aggressive - he was not defending himself, he had caught up to Sam, Grenn and Small Paul as they had fallen behind (as had many NW's men who had been lost during the retreat from the Fist).

From the text

"The Other slid gracefully from the saddle to stand upon the snow. Sword-slim it was, and milky-white. Its armor rippled and shifted as it moved, and its feet did not break the crust of new fallen snow.

Small Paul unslung the long-hafted axe strapped across his back. 'Why'd you hurt that horse? That was Mawney's horse.'....

'Get away!' Grenn took a step, thrusting the torch out before him. 'Away, or you burn.' He poked at it with the flames. The Other's sword gleamed a faint blue glow. It moved toward Grenn, lightning quick, slashing. When the ice blue blade brushed the flames, a screech stabbed Sam's ears sharp as a needle. The head of the torch tumbled sideways to vanish beneath a deep drift of snow, the fire snuffed out at once. And all Grenn held was a short wooden stick. He flung it at the Other, cursing, as Small Paul charged in with his axe. ....

The wights had been slow clumsy things, but the Other was light as snow on the wind. It slid away from Paul's axe, armor rippling, and its crystal sword twisted and spun and slipped between the iron rings of Paul's mail, through leather and wool and bone and flesh."

And it continues until Sam stabs the Other with his obsidian/dragonglass dagger and the Other melts, armor, pale blue blood, flesh, and bones.

If the Others/White Walkers are providing a benign service of herding the wights, this Other could just have passed this small group by without dismounting and engaging them. Grenn even tries to shoo it away with the torch. It seems that instead the Others are herding the wights as if they are foot soldiers in their army as they wage low level war against the humans north of the wall.

I agree that the reasons for the Others raising/creating the wights and killing living things are likely to be surprising and not a product of pure evil intent, but their end actions are a true threat to humans and their animals.

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The Sam chapter in ASOS describing the encounter with the "Other" makes the Other sound very aggressive - he was not defending himself, he had caught up to Sam, Grenn and Small Paul as they had fallen behind (as had many NW's men who had been lost during the retreat from the Fist).

From the text

"The Other slid gracefully from the saddle to stand upon the snow. Sword-slim it was, and milky-white. Its armor rippled and shifted as it moved, and its feet did not break the crust of new fallen snow.

Small Paul unslung the long-hafted axe strapped across his back. 'Why'd you hurt that horse? That was Mawney's horse.'....

'Get away!' Grenn took a step, thrusting the torch out before him. 'Away, or you burn.' He poked at it with the flames. The Other's sword gleamed a faint blue glow. It moved toward Grenn, lightning quick, slashing. When the ice blue blade brushed the flames, a screech stabbed Sam's ears sharp as a needle. The head of the torch tumbled sideways to vanish beneath a deep drift of snow, the fire snuffed out at once. And all Grenn held was a short wooden stick. He flung it at the Other, cursing, as Small Paul charged in with his axe. ....

The wights had been slow clumsy things, but the Other was light as snow on the wind. It slid away from Paul's axe, armor rippling, and its crystal sword twisted and spun and slipped between the iron rings of Paul's mail, through leather and wool and bone and flesh."

And it continues until Sam stabs the Other with his obsidian/dragonglass dagger and the Other melts, armor, pale blue blood, flesh, and bones.

If the Others/White Walkers are providing a benign service of herding the wights, this Other could just have passed this small group by without dismounting and engaging them. Grenn even tries to shoo it away with the torch. It seems that instead the Others are herding the wights as if they are foot soldiers in their army as they wage low level war against the humans north of the wall.

I agree that the reasons for the Others raising/creating the wights and killing living things are likely to be surprising and not a product of pure evil intent, but their end actions are a true threat to humans and their animals.

Again their behavior is "passive aggressive" no matter how their stance is they never attack first.Grenn tries to "shoo" it away and he didn't take his head off or cut him in two he "knocks" the flame :cool4: The WW became deadly when and only when he was attacked with the axe. Still not like to "killers" we've been told they are.

He wasn't tracking them,he came up on them hours later.

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I have a few quick observations, but I promise to return with some of my theories that are very similar to many of the great minds posting here.

WOLFMAID7: YOU ARE MY NEW HEROINE!! Awesome job presenting your analysis and backing up analytical thought with evidence from the text.

I truly do get your point, but I am a very slow responder, especially when you have already parsed sentences, even passages, to argue your views from varying perspectives and angles.

After your exceptional analyses, you deserve a heartfelt reply, and I have already started composing it.

Anyways, I am obsessed with Martin’s symbolic motifs – and my current project is tracing the “blood” symbology, but I am still knee deep in AGoT. I have my exhaustive study pieced together – and Martin references blood on almost every page, so narrowing the topic was imperative.

It is during my careful study of AGoT that it became “clear” that Martin’s first novel dresses the stage for his world of ice and fire. So – Martin makes decisive choices to a purpose, such as the wildling Osha arriving at Winterfell to be a foil to the much misinformed Maester Luwin who is clueless about anything pertinent to the north, the Starks, and winter.

I have concluded rashly, I suppose, that even though Maester Luwin wears his Valyrian steel link like a diploma or an advanced degree, he came away from his course of study disillusioned by his lack of skill performing magic, casting spells, and mastering other arts related to spellbinding, wizardry, and the like.

That being said, Maester Luwin does not even master “book smarts”, evident in what he DOES NOT KNOW!

Why doesn’t Maester Luwin have a clue about Bran’s “wolf dreams” and “tree dreams”? How can he effectively advise the great Stark legacy of the north if he does not even connect Bran’s dreams in Summer with the stone direwolves curled at the feet of the Stark lords and Kings of Winter in WF crypts? Or Bran’s tree dreams with the weirwood that broods, studies, and stares through eyes the CotF carved into the trunks?

It is Osha who informs Bran about what is beyond the Wall, authenticating that indeed the CotF, giants, direwolves, the Others, and much more awaits.

A TWIST ON THE FORCE THAT DELIVERS THE COLD / THE OLD GODS CONTROL THE WIND AND SPEAK THROUGH THE LEAVES OF THE WEIRWOOD TREE

Bran prays beneath the heart tree, asking that the old gods to protect Robb as he travels south. He also asks the powers of the godhood to return those he loves to Winterfell safe and unharmed.

Osha appears to hear the end of Bran’s prayers, and she asserts that the old gods send the wind to answer Bran’s prayers: “A faint wind sighed through the godswood and the red leaves stirred and whispered” (AGoT 577). Osha goes on to specify: “They hear you talking. That rustling, that’s them talking back” (577).

Now that Bran is part of the godhood, he will be able to manipulate the winds to his advantage, and the winds are complicating the treacherous conditions at Winterfell, the Wall, and Stannis’ encampment. Martin describes the drifting snow in the locations mentioned, and in the case of Theon and Jeyne, the drifting snow against the WF’s walls serves as a life-saving buffer that breaks their tandem jump. [At the Wall, I am convinced that Jon shoveling out areas where the snow drifts is foreshadowing: Ghost will escape the armory by jumping from the window in Jon’s quarters, a snow drift breaking his fall as well.]

The wind is the force commanding the snow drifts, yes? Will Bran manipulate the weather from his weirwood throne?

Actually, Bran will more than likely pass the wind onto Sansa or Rickon - Bran’s priority as set in AGoT will be to unite his surviving siblings so that they can work as a team. More later . . .

I have more evidence from the text about the “wind”, but it seems that indeed the wind is under the control of some aspect of the godhood. However, I am not sure that the forces that are the old gods, or the CotF, are behind the WIND as the deliverer of the COLD. More later . . .

FORGOTTEN KNOWLEDGE

I find it suspicious that the Starks with their blood of the First Men have all forgotten something so very important. Hmmm – maybe the knowledge was removed gradually over each generation? Or maybe the Starks of the past did know the secrets but whenever they passed the knowledge on, the recipients did not believe the stories because of a dream visitation that cast doubts – or even “erased” the knowledge.

BUT WHY? The knowledge – or the truth – may be too frightening to know about in advance. As a poster suggested, maybe a blood sacrifice of enormous potential is needed for a purpose.

Why have Jojen and Meera kept this knowledge from Bran? Jojen says that the knowledge the First Men knew is forgotten in Winterfell; however, in the bogs and crannogs – in the Neck and at Greywater Watch – THEY remember because they are closer to the forces of nature. So, why do the Reeds maintain their silence?

Not that it will matter much if Bran is accessing the collective knowledge of the greenseers, the CotF, BR, and all those greenseers who have already become a part of the roots of trees.

THE COLD

The “cold” is Martin’s go-to word when he describes the onset of death, and I even traced the recurring language patterns – but I will mention a few others: Renly feels the cold, and, of course, Jon feels the cold. [i traced all of them, but I cannot find my list! Too many files to go through!]

SHOCK accompanies a severe injury or illness. This “life-threatening medical condition” has many symptoms, but the symptom that appears in Martin’s novels is “COLD, clammy skin” (http://www.medicinenet.com/shock/article.htm).

UNRELIABLE HISTORIES / RECORDS / ADVANCE OF MISINFORMATION

Many responses discussed the absence of reliable records that elaborate on how the WW and their minions were “dispatched with” during the last dark night and endless winter. Even if a written language did not exist, people recorded history through a variety of means: 1) the historian of a House/village/holdfast memorized all the information to pass on from one generation to the next; 2) bards sang/performed poems about the deeds of heroes; these long poems were passed from one generation of bard to the next, with rhapsodists eventually recording the poems in a written form; 3) cave paintings, stone etchings, fabric or embroidery samplers to record dates of importance; woven tapestries, wall murals, wooden and ivory carvings, storytelling through fabric swatches stitched together and lined with fur, etc.

I confess I am not clear on when a written language came about in the Seven Kingdoms and how it informs upon the documentation of an accurate history that contains the secrets that the First Men knew now forgotten in Winterfell.

More later . . . CONGRATULATIONS TO OTHER GREAT POSTERS HERE! I read every word - so I will return, she threatens!

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I have a few quick observations, but I promise to return with some of my theories that are very similar to many of the great minds posting here.

WOLFMAID7: YOU ARE MY NEW HEROINE!! Awesome job presenting your analysis and backing up analytical thought with evidence from the text.

I truly do get your point, but I am a very slow responder, especially when you have already parsed sentences, even passages, to argue your views from varying perspectives and angles.

After your exceptional analyses, you deserve a heartfelt reply, and I have already started composing it.

Anyways, I am obsessed with Martin’s symbolic motifs – and my current project is tracing the “blood” symbology, but I am still knee deep in AGoT. I have my exhaustive study pieced together – and Martin references blood on almost every page, so narrowing the topic was imperative.

It is during my careful study of AGoT that it became “clear” that Martin’s first novel dresses the stage for his world of ice and fire. So – Martin makes decisive choices to a purpose, such as the wildling Osha arriving at Winterfell to be a foil to the much misinformed Maester Luwin who is clueless about anything pertinent to the north, the Starks, and winter.

I have concluded rashly, I suppose, that even though Maester Luwin wears his Valyrian steel link like a diploma or an advanced degree, he came away from his course of study disillusioned by his lack of skill performing magic, casting spells, and mastering other arts related to spellbinding, wizardry, and the like.

That being said, Maester Luwin does not even master “book smarts”, evident in what he DOES NOT KNOW!

Why doesn’t Maester Luwin have a clue about Bran’s “wolf dreams” and “tree dreams”? How can he effectively advise the great Stark legacy of the north if he does not even connect Bran’s dreams in Summer with the stone direwolves curled at the feet of the Stark lords and Kings of Winter in WF crypts? Or Bran’s tree dreams with the weirwood that broods, studies, and stares through eyes the CotF carved into the trunks?

It is Osha who informs Bran about what is beyond the Wall, authenticating that indeed the CotF, giants, direwolves, the Others, and much more awaits.

A TWIST ON THE FORCE THAT DELIVERS THE COLD / THE OLD GODS CONTROL THE WIND AND SPEAK THROUGH THE LEAVES OF THE WEIRWOOD TREE

Bran prays beneath the heart tree, asking that the old gods to protect Robb as he travels south. He also asks the powers of the godhood to return those he loves to Winterfell safe and unharmed.

Osha appears to hear the end of Bran’s prayers, and she asserts that the old gods send the wind to answer Bran’s prayers: “A faint wind sighed through the godswood and the red leaves stirred and whispered” (AGoT 577). Osha goes on to specify: “They hear you talking. That rustling, that’s them talking back” (577).

Now that Bran is part of the godhood, he will be able to manipulate the winds to his advantage, and the winds are complicating the treacherous conditions at Winterfell, the Wall, and Stannis’ encampment. Martin describes the drifting snow in the locations mentioned, and in the case of Theon and Jeyne, the drifting snow against the WF’s walls serves as a life-saving buffer that breaks their tandem jump. [At the Wall, I am convinced that Jon shoveling out areas where the snow drifts is foreshadowing: Ghost will escape the armory by jumping from the window in Jon’s quarters, a snow drift breaking his fall as well.]

The wind is the force commanding the snow drifts, yes? Will Bran manipulate the weather from his weirwood throne?

Actually, Bran will more than likely pass the wind onto Sansa or Rickon - Bran’s priority as set in AGoT will be to unite his surviving siblings so that they can work as a team. More later . . .

I have more evidence from the text about the “wind”, but it seems that indeed the wind is under the control of some aspect of the godhood. However, I am not sure that the forces that are the old gods, or the CotF, are behind the WIND as the deliverer of the COLD. More later . . .

FORGOTTEN KNOWLEDGE

I find it suspicious that the Starks with their blood of the First Men have all forgotten something so very important. Hmmm – maybe the knowledge was removed gradually over each generation? Or maybe the Starks of the past did know the secrets but whenever they passed the knowledge on, the recipients did not believe the stories because of a dream visitation that cast doubts – or even “erased” the knowledge.

BUT WHY? The knowledge – or the truth – may be too frightening to know about in advance. As a poster suggested, maybe a blood sacrifice of enormous potential is needed for a purpose.

Why have Jojen and Meera kept this knowledge from Bran? Jojen says that the knowledge the First Men knew is forgotten in Winterfell; however, in the bogs and crannogs – in the Neck and at Greywater Watch – THEY remember because they are closer to the forces of nature. So, why do the Reeds maintain their silence?

Not that it will matter much if Bran is accessing the collective knowledge of the greenseers, the CotF, BR, and all those greenseers who have already become a part of the roots of trees.

THE COLD

The “cold” is Martin’s go-to word when he describes the onset of death, and I even traced the recurring language patterns – but I will mention a few others: Renly feels the cold, and, of course, Jon feels the cold. [i traced all of them, but I cannot find my list! Too many files to go through!]

SHOCK accompanies a severe injury or illness. This “life-threatening medical condition” has many symptoms, but the symptom that appears in Martin’s novels is “COLD, clammy skin” (http://www.medicinenet.com/shock/article.htm).

UNRELIABLE HISTORIES / RECORDS / ADVANCE OF MISINFORMATION

Many responses discussed the absence of reliable records that elaborate on how the WW and their minions were “dispatched with” during the last dark night and endless winter. Even if a written language did not exist, people recorded history through a variety of means: 1) the historian of a House/village/holdfast memorized all the information to pass on from one generation to the next; 2) bards sang/performed poems about the deeds of heroes; these long poems were passed from one generation of bard to the next, with rhapsodists eventually recording the poems in a written form; 3) cave paintings, stone etchings, fabric or embroidery samplers to record dates of importance; woven tapestries, wall murals, wooden and ivory carvings, storytelling through fabric swatches stitched together and lined with fur, etc.

I confess I am not clear on when a written language came about in the Seven Kingdoms and how it informs upon the documentation of an accurate history that contains the secrets that the First Men knew now forgotten in Winterfell.

More later . . . CONGRATULATIONS TO OTHER GREAT POSTERS HERE! I read every word - so I will return, she threatens!

Thanks so much, lots of interesting observations in your post , I definitely have to digest more. I especially like your observations concerning "the cold" and death as I believe in this world the grim reaper's personification of "the cold" . It also calls into memory Syrio's lessons with Arya " there is only one god and his name is death" .... Freaky

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Again their behavior is "passive aggressive" no matter how their stance is they never attack first.Grenn tries to "shoo" it away and he didn't take his head off or cut him in two he "knocks" the flame :cool4: The WW became deadly when and only when he was attacked with the axe. Still not like to "killers" we've been told they are.

He wasn't tracking them,he came up on them hours later.

It still seems that if the Others/White Walkers are not out to kill men & other living creatures, why bother to stop and dismount and approach the 3 NW brothers? Why not ride on by? The Other's actions are clearly threatening - just as the Other acted in a threatening manner to Waymar Royce in the AGoT prolouge prior to Royce's challenge to fight and we all know how that ends.

Also the NW fleeing from the Fist are clearly being followed by the wights, at the very least, and stragglers are being picked off (Sam describes hearing the screams of those behind, etc.). The appearance of the Other/WW as Grenn, Sam and Sm.Paul fall to the back of the groups strongly implies that the Other/WW is with the wights and likely herding the wights.

Also consider Craster's offerings of his sons to the Others/WW - it seems Craster is giving the life force most dear to him "His blood...His son" and when the WW demand increases (as indicated by more frequent visits), Craster starts using sheep (and we know how he likes his mutton), then it will be dogs and then.....I read this as indicating his wives are of much lesser value to him. At about the same time as this increased demand for Craster's blood sacrifices, Mance and co. are up in the Frostfangs opening graves as they look for the Horn of Joramun and Ygritte regrets the hundreds of shades they set loose in the process. Are the WW using blood magic based on the sacrifices to turn the shades into wights that they control?

Again, I agree that the reasons for the return of the Others/WW and their purpose is poorly understood and likely not a purely evil intent. Yet they remain a threat to humans....if they weren't a threat, the WW in ASOS would have passed G, S & SP without stopping....unless he thought he was going to have a discussion with them???? :dunno:

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"A shadow emerged from the dark of the wood. It stood in front of Royce. Tall, it was, and gaunt and hard as old bones, with flesh pale as milk. Its armor seemed to change color as it moved; here it was white as new-fallen snow, there black as shadow, everywhere dappled with the deep grey-green of the trees. The patterns ran like moonlight on water with every step it took. Will heard the breath go out of Ser Waymar Royce in a long hiss. "Come no farther," the lordling warned. His voice cracked like a boy's. He threw the long sable cloak back over his shoulders, to free his arms for battle, and took his sword in both hands. The wind had stopped. It was very cold. The Other slid forward on silent feet. In its hand was a longsword like none t hat Will had ever seen. No human metal had gone into the forging of that blade . It was alive with moonlight, translucent, a shard of crystal so thin that it seemed almost to vanish when seen edge-on. There was a faint blue shimmer to the thing, a ghost-light that played around its edges, and somehow Will knew i t was sharper than any razor. Ser Waymar met him bravely. "Dance with me then". He lifted his sword high over his head, defiant."

We have the tendency as humans to see threat where there is none,sometimes based on fear and pride. I'm sorry we as readers in our subconscious have been influenced by the stories said about the WWs.From the prologue and i'm looking at it objectively, then Royce was the threat.Why?

Firstly, as indicated by the prologue he (Royce) took on a stance that was threatening,the writer simply wrote -GRRM did this perfectly- 'that the WW stood in front of Royce". So he initially was not a threat, he " became" a threat the moment Royce drew his sword to fight.I am positive had Royce ran he would be alive- if " the Cold" didn't kill him" but the WW wouldn't have.

Secondly, the pact between the Firstmen and the old races dictated that the areas North of the Wall is to belong to the "old races" therefore no humans are supposed to be there.We have Tormounds conversation with Jon saying that " the WWs never came in force,but they were on their heels" but the WWs whom the Wildlings were following was not killing them,only driving them South.Why do you think Mance wanted to be let through the Wall,they didn't just show up they were being herded to the Wall.

Osha's discussion with Bran and Maester Luuwin,she says that they were coming south because the WWs were awake,South was the only place they could go because it was where they were being herded to.

The purpose of the WW then become clear which is herd all humans North of the Wall and to the south ,why?

The North is too big,and more humans are there now because of course Wildling population increasing, so we need to get them back over the Wall before "the Cold". Thus far we have only seen 6 now 5 WWs, in the past that would of suffice,now it just won't do; hence the frequent visits to Craster's.

Yes you are correct the NW men on the Fist were fleeing the Wights not the WWs,the Wights hadn't been collected.

It is safe to say that the WWs if they run into humans will not just ride on by,they can't the point is to push humans south. In the case of the Wildlings who chose to run vs stand ground there was no problem.Every NW man thus far didn't run they stood and attacked,so they go killed.

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It still seems that if the Others/White Walkers are not out to kill men & other living creatures, why bother to stop and dismount and approach the 3 NW brothers? Why not ride on by? The Other's actions are clearly threatening - just as the Other acted in a threatening manner to Waymar Royce in the AGoT prolouge prior to Royce's challenge to fight and we all know how that ends.

Also the NW fleeing from the Fist are clearly being followed by the wights, at the very least, and stragglers are being picked off (Sam describes hearing the screams of those behind, etc.). The appearance of the Other/WW as Grenn, Sam and Sm.Paul fall to the back of the groups strongly implies that the Other/WW is with the wights and likely herding the wights.

Also consider Craster's offerings of his sons to the Others/WW - it seems Craster is giving the life force most dear to him "His blood...His son" and when the WW demand increases (as indicated by more frequent visits), Craster starts using sheep (and we know how he likes his mutton), then it will be dogs and then.....I read this as indicating his wives are of much lesser value to him. At about the same time as this increased demand for Craster's blood sacrifices, Mance and co. are up in the Frostfangs opening graves as they look for the Horn of Joramun and Ygritte regrets the hundreds of shades they set loose in the process. Are the WW using blood magic based on the sacrifices to turn the shades into wights that they control?

Again, I agree that the reasons for the return of the Others/WW and their purpose is poorly understood and likely not a purely evil intent. Yet they remain a threat to humans....if they weren't a threat, the WW in ASOS would have passed G, S & SP without stopping....unless he thought he was going to have a discussion with them???? :dunno:

I think that's a valid point against the "WW won't harm humans unless threatened" idea. I would add that they don't seem to ever sheathe their ice blades. IIRC the text never mentions them drawing the blade, they just show up blade in hand. This to me would denote the same intention as the bare steel laid upon a lord's lap, or a man who bares his steel in an argument. They are menacing and seem to move in blade in hand for the attack. If they only fight men when attacked, then this is an odd way to go about their business (ie confronting men with your blade in hand). They are not trying to pass these men, but intentionally seem to confront them.

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