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Yeade

Le Grande Northern Conspiracy, Parte the Fourth

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And I thought I worte long posts. Good for you, now that's posting.

This is like the best thread on the forums. Posts on other threads so often get replied to with condescension "actually if you check your history you're wrong", "that is just stupid/arrogant/ignorant". Here there are actually long thought out posts that are met with either interest or at least reasonably politic queries and disagreement

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I see a riverlands conspiracy and certainly find Lady Gwynhyfvar and Yeade posts are very good reads.

The target of the conspiracy must be the Freys. The great wrath of the North (and Stannis has nothing to lose by going along too is going to come to the Freys too.

We know Roose and Ramsey are the focus of the GNC, with variations on Stannis, the Wildings and the Nights Watch, even before The Others get through the wall.

But the Freys, they're being whittled down, They've plenty of enemies after the red wedding and even their 'friends' at court disdain them.

It seems a given that Red Wedding 2.0 will see the 'bad guy' Freys slaughtered.

I think they'll find some help at a late point from The Vale.

Littlefinger being the nominal Lord Paramount of the Riverlands is one thing, but on a look through the Frey family tree, they married into the families of most of the Lords Declarant. Perra Royce was Lord Frey's first wife. Stevron Frey married a Waynwood. Edwyn Frey married a Hunter. Walton Frey is married to a Hardyng, Arwood Frey married a Royce, Sandor Frey is squire to Donnel Waynwood. Willamen Frey is Maester to House Hunter.

It's nothing solid, but I have a feeling that those connections to the Vale would see the Freys getting some support and I don't see an unquestioning acceptance of Sansa even if she marries Harry the Heir.

I definitely see the Reeds tying into the GNC's revenge upon the Freys. As far as I can make out from the maps, the one of the sources of the Trident lies somewhere in the Neck, and going downstream the Green Fork takes you to the twins. It'd be crackpot though awesome to see the northern galleys moved across the narrow causeway into the Fever River or something, but you'd need a detailed map of the river network to even see if that journeys possible. But maybe the Crannogmen's smaller boats would allow for the more subtle infiltration needed. Either way, if the Twins is the target, I see the Trident being the way to get there rather than overland.

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Big round of applause for nenya~ and the fantastic rundown of the movements of the Brotherhood Without Banners. It truly appears that the BWB has the information network and numbers to carry out a series of coordinated strikes against Lannister and Frey forces in the riverlands. And, to tie this in with the discussion about how that region's been ravaged by the War of the Five Kings, I think that, if the BWB plans to take any action, it must be soon, before winter sets in.

Heyo Winter Comin', while it's undeniably risky for the riverlords--the northmen, too, for that matter--to rebel against the Iron Throne again, the Red Wedding was such an affront to the laws of gods and men that the need for revenge may be overriding other concerns. Plus, I wonder if the riverlords, again like the northmen, have already realized that it's simply too late to harvest much more food given their depleted manpower and are now operating under the principle that, since they're doomed to die, it's better to die bathed in the blood of their enemies.

What's more, remaining compliant with the demands of King's Landing is not likely to bring aid to relieve starvation or other recompense for damages suffered, IMO. The Tyrells and Martells are wholly occupied with their own problems--the ironborn reaving in the Reach and Dorne being too distant, anyways--and the Lannisters have amply demonstrated that they can't be trusted in anything except the ruthless pursuit of their ambitions, never mind a humanitarian mission on behalf of their defeated foes. Securing the Vale is probably the best option for the North and Riverlands besides seeking help overseas from Braavos and the rest of the Free Cities. Perhaps the Blackfish's gone to appeal to the Lords Declarant for this very reason?

Regarding the Freys and divided loyalties, yeah, it's a real trial sorting out the tangled family connections. One interesting possibility is that, by the end, House Frey will be run almost entirely by its women, the wives and daughters who've been marginalized, consigned to being broodmares, all their lives. At any rate, the Rosby-Freys are the only ones I'd mark as secret Stark supporters currently but, as Freys continue to drop like flies with the vengeful wrath of half of Westeros and the disgusted contempt of the other half unabated, I'd expect the more distant relations to begin abandoning ship. The branches in the Vale, for instance.

Hate to say it, but a detailed re-read of the Red Wedding and related chapters, such as Merrett Frey's POV, might be in order. Any hints as to who knew and approved of the planned treachery or did not would be in those passages, provided you can survive the psychological trauma of carefully examining every sentence, lol. To make matters more muddled, even participants, especially those with minor roles, may have acted with reservations and/or under compulsion (case in point, Roslin herself), later coming to regret their part in the slaughter.

Finally, I must admit I haven't given much consideration to an assault on the Twins proper, though I agree a waterborne attack, say, at night would be more viable than a direct siege of the towers. The Neck does seem like a good staging area for such a campaign, presumably to be fought by the crannogmen and maybe those wandering bands of northmen that have been the focus of recent speculation, organized into a respectable force by Maege Mormont and Galbart Glover? In terms of timing, if Reed et al. are indeed conspiring with Lady Stoneheart, waiting until after the BWB has struck, in retaking Riverrun and/or freeing the Red Wedding prisoners, could be very effective, IMO, as those events would tend to draw Frey defenders away from the Twins. Better yet if Lord Walder attends Daven Lannister's wedding to gloat, as is his wont, and dies at UnCat's hands, precipitating a Frey civil war between Edwyn and Black Walder, further distracting and depleting their men. There are certainly a lot of wheels in motion...

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Three cheers for nenya! Nailing down the BwB was not an easy task :D

Regarding taking the Twins, I have just reread the chapter where the Northern Army first encounters the Twins in their need to cross river as they emerge from the Neck. Here is the description, which is worth reviewing:

It was near midday when their vanguard came in sight if the Twins, where the Lords of the Crossing had their seat. The Green Fork ran swift and deep here, but the Freys had spanned it many centuries past and grown rich off the coin men paid them to cross. Their bridge was a massive arch of smooth grey rock, wide enough for two wagons to pass abreast; the Water Tower rose from the center of the span, commandingboth road and river with its arrow slits, murder holes, and portcullises. It had taken the Freys three generations to complete their bridge; when they were done they'd thrown up stout timber keeps on either bank, so no one might cross without their leave.

The timber had long since given way to stone. The Twins--two squat, ugly, formidable castles, identical in every respect, with the bridge arching between--had guarded the crossing for centuries. High curtain walls, deep moats, and heavy oak-and-iron gates protected the approaches, the bridge footings rose from within stout inner keeps, there was a barbican and portcullis on either bank, and the Water Tower defended the span itself. One glance was enough to tell Catelyn that the castle would not be taken by storm. The battlements bristled with spears and swords and scorpions, there was an archer at every crenel and slit, the drawbridge was up, and the portcullis down, the gates closed and barred.

The Greatjon began to curse and swear as soon as he saw what awaited them. Lord Rickard Karstark glowered in silence. "That cannot be assaulted, my lords," Roose Bolton announced. "Nor can we take it by siege, without an army on the far bank to invest the other castle," Helman Tallhart said gloomily.

Remember this is Catelyn's POV. She knows these things. If indeed the BwB is now located near Oldstones and Hag's Mire and is also moving men into the Neck and enlisting the aid of Howlad Reed, and/or if Stout and Condon remained on the north/east side of the Green Fork, we begin to see a pattern of groups being positioned in a ring around the Twins, just as they were (and probably still are) around Riverrun at the end of Feast. I wonder if the noose isn't tightening around the Freys as they sit in their unassailable fortress? It will be interesting to further untangle the possible allegiances of the various parts of the family, as I'm sure (as Merrett Frey was in the Storm prologue) that they will not all be wholly supportive of each other. If Lord Walder dies and various factions get turned out (as Merrett was clearly worried about happening) how many might join up with their former enemies-- especially if they happen to have family ties with them? I'm sure the clues are there, but it's going to take some untangling, lol.

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Finally, Lady Gwynhyfvar, kudos on the illuminating analysis of events in the riverlands! The Vances and Blackwoods, the latter of whom worship the old gods, IIRC, are certainly acting quite suspiciously, and association seems to suggest they're in cahoots with the Pipers and Paeges. Lord Piper has no love for the Freys, but two Paeges are married to Lord Walder's thirteenth and fourteenth sons from his Blackwood wife, Jammos and Whalen, respectively. I'm not sure what this wrinkle means, though, along with the Vance-Freys being fairly high up in the line of succession for the Twins. Lame Lothar, Jammos and Whalen's older brother, is one of the key planners behind the Red Wedding, and Whalen gets drunk under the table by the Greatjon prior to the massacre, though his assignment to keep the Greatjon occupied perhaps indicates he's held in low esteem per Merrett Frey's POV. Jammos is also Big Walder's father. Yet the Paeges send no men to the siege of Riverrun... Just what is going on here?!

I am not sure, that the Vance-Freys are high in the order of succession. Their claim would derive from one of Stevron's daughters and Bran Vra has me convinced, that the Freys apply Salic Law, since noone ever mentions the female members of house Frey anywhere in the line of succession.

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Bringing the North back into the GNC...

It has often been speculated that Harwin could be the Hooded Man in WF. The most common speed bump for that theory, as I understand it, is that Harwin is with the BwB when they capture Brienne at the end of Feast and the timeline does not allow it.

However... nenya mentioned above that she's not so sure... the "young northman" in the sheepskin jerkin in Brienne's final POV (whom I will hereafter call sheepskin jerkin guy) is never identified by name, nor is he described other than his voice ("frosted with the accents of the north") Harwin tells Arya in Storm that there are six northmen remaining of the force that Ned sent out with Beric, plus Hal Mollen is out there somewhere, having been sent north with Ned's bones in Clash. So we are left with the voice, and the speech, of sheepskin jerkin guy. Recall Harwin's manner of addressing Arya

"You ride like a northman milady"
ASoS, chapter 17

"Where do you think you're going, milady? You shouldn't run off. There are wolves in these woods, and worse things."
ASoS, chapter 43

Always, the form of address is "milady" Contrast with Harwin's mode of address to Catelyn in ACoK:

"My lady, do you hear that noise..."

The difference between "milady" and "my lady" is the difference between someone of gentle birth and someone of peasant stock. A lord and a blacksmith, for instance, or even a groom and a captain of guard. Now, return to sheepskin jerkin guy in AFfC as he addresses Brienne

"Can it be that my lady has forgotten that you once swore her your service?"

Could sheepskin jerkin guy be Hal Mollen? Remember that Hal was with Catelyn when she met with Renly and when Brienne joined her service. Re-reading the Brienne passage in Feast, you see that Lady Stoneheart makes a statement that is interpreted by sheepskin jerkin guy. She asks the name of the sword, hisses and says something else which is relayed as

"Call it Oathbreaker, she says. It was made for treachery and murder. She names it False Friend. Like you."

It is after this that the young man reminds Brienne that she was once sworn to LS, not apparently as a result of anything LS said, but from his own knowledge.

So-- if sheepskin jerkin guy is Hallis Mollen, then where is Harwin who was a high level lieutenant of the BwB when we last saw him, who is mentioned in that very chapter by Thoros as being on hand when they found Catelyn in the river? Away on a secret mission? I'd be most grateful if anyone wanted to revive the Harwin as Hooded Man theory here as a refresher for all of us :)

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It has been mentioned that many of the Northmen army are deliberately staying in the South rather than returning home? This makes little sense as surely they would want to return home to their families who are in danger from the Ironborn, mini-civil wars, and the impending Winter. Stalling on the longshot that not only will there be a new Stark Lord who wants to be King but will prioritize war in the South over rebuilding and strengthening his base.

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I am not sure, that the Vance-Freys are high in the order of succession. Their claim would derive from one of Stevron's daughters and Bran Vra has me convinced, that the Freys apply Salic Law, since noone ever mentions the female members of house Frey anywhere in the line of succession.

I imagine that this probably has more to do with the sheer amount of sons and grandsons in existence than anything. A lot of people would have to die for any woman to have a shot at inheriting the Twins.

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It has been mentioned that many of the Northmen army are deliberately staying in the South rather than returning home? This makes little sense as surely they would want to return home to their families who are in danger from the Ironborn, mini-civil wars, and the impending Winter. Stalling on the longshot that not only will there be a new Stark Lord who wants to be King but will prioritize war in the South over rebuilding and strengthening his base.

It may be hard for them to get back since Roose controls Moat Cailin. Also, even as recently as the American Civil War, people on the losing side of a war were often told to find their own way home. Many of them never made it back.

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I imagine that this probably has more to do with the sheer amount of sons and grandsons in existence than anything. A lot of people would have to die for any woman to have a shot at inheriting the Twins.

If you look at the family tree of the Freys, you can see, that Edwyn Frey has a daughter (another Walda Frey) and no sons. Since Edwyn is the firstborn son of Ryman, who is the firstborn son of Stevron, the heir of Walder Frey at the start of the series, that puts her in fourth place for the inheritance at the beginning of the series. When Stevron dies after the battle of Oxcross , she would be in third place for the inheritance, if the rules for inheritance at the Twins were applied. But when Little and Big Walder hear of Stevron's death and talk about the new order of succession, they mention neither Walda Frey, nor Petyr Pimple's daughter Perra, who at that time is sixth in line.

In AFFC, when Edwyn mentions his father's death to Jaime, he says, that he is the only one between Black Walder and the Twins. Since Walda Frey is eight year old at that time, this could mean, that she is no real threat to Black Walder, since she is young, but this could also mean, that she does not stand to inherit due to Salic Law.

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If you look at the family tree of the Freys, you can see, that Edwyn Frey has a daughter (another Walda Frey) and no sons. Since Edwyn is the firstborn son of Ryman, who is the firstborn son of Stevron, the heir of Walder Frey at the start of the series, that puts her in fourth place for the inheritance at the beginning of the series. When Stevron dies after the battle of Oxcross , she would be in third place for the inheritance, if the rules for inheritance at the Twins were applied. But when Little and Big Walder hear of Stevron's death and talk about the new order of succession, they mention neither Walda Frey, nor Petyr Pimple's daughter Perra, who at that time is sixth in line.

In AFFC, when Edwyn mentions his father's death to Jaime, he says, that he is the only one between Black Walder and the Twins. Since Walda Frey is eight year old at that time, this could mean, that she is no real threat to Black Walder, since she is young, but this could also mean, that she does not stand to inherit due to Salic Law.

That could be true. Of course, it could just mean that if Black Walder was willing to kill Stevron (possibly) and Edwyn, that there was no way he would let an eight year old girl stand in his way..

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The Frey succession is very complicated and akaik has never been clarified by GRRM. If they follow a traditional form of agnatic primogeniture, where inheritance goes through the male line before it transfers to a female, there are 40 living heirs in the male line before any woman would be considered. Then it gets tricky because questions like does a son a younger daughter inherit ahead of the daughter of older son need to be answered. Of course, if they followed absolute primogeniture like most modern monarchs and nobility, then the daughters of Stevron would inherit chronologically after their elder brothers and their children and the Vances would be quite high in the succession. Since it appears that most houses in Westeros follow a system where sons and the children of sons inherit ahead of daughters, I would place the Vance-Freys pretty far down the list. None of this rules out possible (probable?!) succession squabbles and alliances between various factions being formed, so at the end of the day we'll most likely be just as surprised as the rest of Westeros because, quite honestly, I find the odds of Edmyn, Black Walder and Emmon (the male offspring of Ser Stevron) all surviving the coming storm pretty slim :dunno:

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Regarding the Frey succession, you may very well be right, Mrs_Darcy, so I've taken the liberty of rearranging the big damn list of Freys from the first page. As far as issues like who inherits between the son of a younger daughter and the daughter of an older son are concerned, I made the assumption that all possible male claimants should be exhausted before rule of the Twins passes to a woman. Then I admittedly got lazy and just went down the line in my original post, pulling out female claimants and moving them to the bottom in order.

In the end, as Lady Gwynhyfvar says, it hardly matters who holds what position on this list as, should Lord Walder die, nothing's going to stop men like Black Walder from murdering their way up. Not to mention, given that House Frey's enemies are almost too numerous to count, any future heirs could be stripped of lands and titles, if they haven't already ditched the name for the sake of self-preservation or even on principle, not wishing to be associated with an accursed family.

           WALDER FREY, Lord of the Crossing
Oxcross          X  --SER STEVRON FREY [1]
Lady Stoneheart   X    --SER RYMAN FREY
          1       --EDWYN FREY
          2       --WALDER FREY, called BLACK WALDER
Lady Stoneheart   X       --PETYR FREY, called PETYR PIMPLE
Red Wedding      X    --AEGON FREY, called JINGLEBELL
          3    --WALTON FREY
          4       --STEFFON FREY, called THE SWEET
          5       --BRYAN FREY
          6  --SER EMMON FREY [2]
Brave Companions  X    --SER CLEOS FREY
          7       --TYWIN FREY
          8       --WILLEM FREY
          9    --SER LYONEL FREY
Rickard Karstark  X    --TION FREY
         10    --WALDER FREY, called RED WALDER
         11  --SER AENYS FREY [3]
          O    --AEGON FREY, called AEGON BLOODBORN
Wyman Manderly      X    --RHAEGAR FREY
         12       --ROBERT FREY
         13       --JONOS FREY
Wyman Manderly      X  --SER JARED FREY [4]
Red Wedding      X    --SER TYTOS FREY
          O       --ZACHERY FREY
          O  --SEPTON LUCEON (FREY) [5]
         14  --SER HOSTEEN FREY [6]
         15    --SER ARWOOD FREY
         16       --ANDROW and ALYN FREY
Wyman Manderly      X  --SYMOND FREY [7]
         17    --ALESANDER FREY
         18    --BRADAMAR FREY
         19    --ALYX FREY
         20  --SER DANWELL FREY [8]
Lady Stoneheart   X  --MERRETT FREY [9]
Big Walder      X    --WALDER FREY, called LITTLE WALDER
          X  --SER GEREMY FREY [10]
         21    --SANDOR FREY
         22  --SER RAYMUND FREY [11]
          O    --ROBERT FREY
         23    --MALWYN FREY
         24    --JAIME and TYWIN FREY
         25  --LOTHAR FREY, called LAME LOTHAR [12]
         26  --SER JAMMOS FREY [13]
         27    --WALDER FREY, called BIG WALDER
         28    --DICKOS and MATHIS FREY
         29  --SER WHALEN FREY [14]
         30    --HOSTER FREY
         31  --SER PERWYN FREY [15]
Red Wedding      X  --SER BENFREY FREY [16]
         32    --OSMUND FREY
          O  --MAESTER WILLAMEN (FREY) [17]
         33  --OLYVAR FREY [18]
         34  --WENDEL FREY [19]
         35  --COLMAR FREY [20]
         36  --WALTYR FREY, called TYR [21]
         37  --ELMAR FREY [22]
========= Female Line Male Claimants =======================================
         38  --WALDER VANCE, son of Lady Maegelle
         39  --PATREK VANCE, son of Lady Maegelle
         40  --WALDER GOODBROOK, son of Lady Kyra
         41  --SER HARYS HAIGH, son of Lady Perriane
         42    --WALDER HAIGH
         43  --SER DONNEL HAIGH, son of Lady Perriane
         44  --ALYN HAIGH, son of Lady Perriane
         45  --SER DAMON VYPREN, son of Lady Lythene
         46  --ROBERT BRAX, son of Lady Morya
         47  --WALDER BRAX, son of Lady Morya
         48  --JON BRAX, son of Lady Morya
         49  --RICKARD WYLDE, son of Elyana Vypren
========= Female Claimants =================================================
         50  --WALDA FREY, daughter of Edwyn
         51  --PERRA FREY, daughter of Petyr
         52  --WALDA FREY, called FAIR WALDA, daughter of Walton
          X  --LADY MAEGELLE VANCE, daughter of Stevron
         53    --MARIANNE VANCE
         54  --WALDA FREY, called WHITE WALDA, daughter of Rhaegar
         55  --ZIA FREY, daughter of Tytos
         56  --LADY KYRA GOODBROOK, daughter of Jared
         57    --JEYNE GOODBROOK
         58  --RYELLA FREY, daughter of Arwood
         59  --HOSTELLA FREY, daughter of Arwood
         60  --AMEREI FREY, called AMI, daughter of Merrett
         61  --LADY WALDA BOLTON, called FAT WALDA, daughter of Merrett
         62  --MARISSA FREY, daughter of Merrett
         63  --CYNTHEA FREY, daughter of Geremy
         64  --SERRA and SARRA FREY, daughters of Raymund
         65  --CERSEI FREY, called LITTLE BEE, daughter of Raymund
         66  --TYSANE FREY, daughter of Lothar
         67  --WALDA FREY, daughter of Lothar
         68  --EMBERLEI FREY, daughter of Lothar
         69  --LEANA FREY, daughter of Lothar
         70  --MERIANNE FREY, daughter of Whalen
         71  --DELLA FREY, called DEAF DELLA, daughter of Benfrey
         72  --LADY PERRIANE HAIGH, daughter of Lord Walder
         73  --LADY LYTHENE VYPREN, daughter of Lord Walder
         74    --ELYANA VYPREN
         75  --LADY MORYA BRAX, daughter of Lord Walder
         76  --TYTA FREY, called TYTA THE MAID, daughter of Lord Walder
         77  --LADY ROSLIN TULLY, daughter of Lord Walder
         78  --ARWYN FREY, daughter of Lord Walder
         79  --SHIREI FREY, daughter of Lord Walder

Bringing the North back into the GNC...

LOL! Yeah, the discussion sure has branched out for a theory that originally focused on events in Winterfell.

At any rate, I never considered that the northman at Brienne's trial could be anyone besides Harwin. Given the overlap between AFFC and ADWD, with the latter catching up to the former at least a chapter before the hooded man appears, I figured Harwin, an excellent rider, plausibly has enough time to travel north from around Riverrun to Winterfell, in the same vein as Stannis's conveniently fast voyage from Dragonstone to the Wall.

OTOH, Ned's bones have yet to return home, and the common speculation is that Hallis Mollen's honor guard has been stopped by Howland Reed in the Neck, taken under his protection until the North is once again safely in the hands of Stark loyalists. So, a switcheroo after the Brotherhood Without Banners disappears into the Neck, too? UnCat hears word of fake!Arya's marriage to Ramsay Bolton and dispatches Harwin to Winterfell, both to confirm Arya's identity and to powwow with the speculated northern conspirators, while Hal joins the BWB in Harwin's stead. It's not specified how many others accompany Lady Stoneheart into Hag's Mire along with Jack-Be-Lucky and Lem, IIRC.

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LOL! Yeah, the discussion sure has branched out for a theory that originally focused on events in Winterfell.

At any rate, I never considered that the northman at Brienne's trial could be anyone besides Harwin. Given the overlap between AFFC and ADWD, with the latter catching up to the former at least a chapter before the hooded man appears, I figured Harwin, an excellent rider, plausibly has enough time to travel north from around Riverrun to Winterfell, in the same vein as Stannis's conveniently fast voyage from Dragonstone to the Wall.

OTOH, Ned's bones have yet to return home, and the common speculation is that Hallis Mollen's honor guard has been stopped by Howland Reed in the Neck, taken under his protection until the North is once again safely in the hands of Stark loyalists. So, a switcheroo after the Brotherhood Without Banners disappears into the Neck, too? UnCat hears word of fake!Arya's marriage to Ramsay Bolton and dispatches Harwin to Winterfell, both to confirm Arya's identity and to powwow with the speculated northern conspirators, while Hal joins the BWB in Harwin's stead. It's not specified how many others accompany Lady Stoneheart into Hag's Mire along with Jack-Be-Lucky and Lem, IIRC.

I always thought it strange that the young northman (sheepskin jerkin guy...) wasn't given a name in that chapter, while many others were introduced to Brienne, or at least had their names used in her presence. nenya's speculations were what got me thinking though. It would make sense for Harwin to be sent north to check out fArya, since he had spent the most amount of time with her. As was noted in a recent thread about Lady Stoneheart, one of her goals with the BwB seems to be running down rumors of Arya's presence in the riverlands-- the interrogation of Merrett Frey and even the collection of orphans at the Crossroads Inn both point to that. Sending someone whom Arya knew and trusted to WF to check out Bolton's Arya would only make sense. Hal Mollen wouldn't be a good candidate, since he hadn't seen her in years. The only ones mentioned in the Merrett epilogue were Tom, Lem, Jack-be-Lucky, Mudge and LS. While there were others there ("an ill-favored gaggle of leathery old men and smooth cheeked lads younger than Petyr Pimple... there seemed to be a dozen at least, maybe a score.") it's entirely possible Harwin (who is neither leathery nor smooth checked) was sent north shortly after LS was resurrected and rumor of fArya's wedding to Ramsay reached the riverlands. Then we know that they split, with one group vanishing near Fairmarket and another (including LS, Lem and Jack) going into the Neck, after hanging Merrett. Since it seems likely that Hal ended up at Greywater Watch it just seems like such an intriguing possibility...

Eta-

By the way- thanks for sorting out the Freys!

That will come in handy as I expand my locator spreadsheet :)

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I don't think the Hooded Man will be Hal Mollen .Hal has an noticeably low born / uneducated manner of speech and a distinctive appearance.( which I know could change , but it's particularly mentioned ).. From AGoT:

Robb arrived before her food. Rodrik Cassel came with him, and her husband’s ward Theon Greyjoy, and lastly Hallis Mollen, a muscular guardsman with a square brown beard. He was the new captain of the guard, Robb said.

Snippets of his dialogue following the assassination attempt on Bran...

“He was no man of Winterfell, m’lady, but some says they seen him here and about the castle these past few weeks.”

******

Hallis Mollen looked abashed. “Between the horses Lord Eddard took south and them we sent north to the Night’s Watch, the stalls were half-empty. It were no great trick to hide from the stableboys. Could be Hodor saw him, the talk is that boy’s been acting queer, but simple as he is...” Hal shook his head.

“We found where he’d been sleeping,” Robb put in. “He had ninety silver stags in a leather bag buried beneath the straw.”

“It’s good to know my son’s life was not sold cheaply,” Catelyn said bitterly.

Hallis Mollen looked at her, confused. “Begging your grace, m’lady, you saying he was out to kill your boy?”

I don't have time to go into detail now ( but I'll be back )..however Hal is a bit slow on the uptake. Would he be likely as the guy who can decipher what Lady Stonehart is saying ?

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I don't think the Hooded Man will be Hal Mollen .Hal has an noticeably low born / uneducated manner of speech and a distinctive appearance.( which I know could change , but it's particularly mentioned ).. From AGoT:

Robb arrived before her food. Rodrik Cassel came with him, and her husband’s ward Theon Greyjoy, and lastly Hallis Mollen, a muscular guardsman with a square brown beard. He was the new captain of the guard, Robb said.

Snippets of his dialogue following the assassination attempt on Bran...

“He was no man of Winterfell, m’lady, but some says they seen him here and about the castle these past few weeks.”

******

Hallis Mollen looked abashed. “Between the horses Lord Eddard took south and them we sent north to the Night’s Watch, the stalls were half-empty. It were no great trick to hide from the stableboys. Could be Hodor saw him, the talk is that boy’s been acting queer, but simple as he is...” Hal shook his head.

“We found where he’d been sleeping,” Robb put in. “He had ninety silver stags in a leather bag buried beneath the straw.”

“It’s good to know my son’s life was not sold cheaply,” Catelyn said bitterly.

Hallis Mollen looked at her, confused. “Begging your grace, m’lady, you saying he was out to kill your boy?”

I don't have time to go into detail now ( but I'll be back )..however Hal is a bit slow on the uptake. Would he be likely as the guy who can decipher what Lady Stonehart is saying ?

Actually, I was suggesting that Harwin is the Hooded Man (which I know you disagree with ;)) and Hal is the "sheepskin jerkin guy" with the BwB. The speech is interesting because I found examples of Hal using the "my lady" form of address while he was with Catelyn in Clash (which sheepskin jerkin guy clearly does in Feast) and none of Harwin using it. Although Hal is described as always stating the obvious (and thus possibly a bit dull), he is very loyal and House Mollen is also described as a "noble house" on a par with the Condons, Cassels and Pooles. Sort of mid-level gentry, I supposed, so I wouldn't say "low-born"? As for interpreting LS-- I think it's often the case that slow and meticulous thinkers have the best facility for patience and paying attention? Could be no more than that. I'm not 100% zeroed in on this, I just find it curious that Harwin is actually never specifically mentioned or seen with the BwB after the LS resurrection. Remember that he tells Arya there are five other northmen in the BwB early in Storm? It's also possible sheepskin jerkin guy could be one of those, although it wouldn't have the nice significance of Hal being Catelyn's personal guard again.

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Yes, while walking my dogs I was think ing about it.. I know low born is a bit off .. but I meant lower born than the manner of speaking of the HM ( little as he says ) would imply, and really less educated is more what I meant... And Hal can elevate his speech when necessary as also seen when he uses , "My Lords" when announcing Bran at the feast when Robb calls the banners... and I'm sure Hal would have requested to be Cat's guard again , if the question came up and he hadn't been otherwise deployed first.

I know you were putting Harwin forth, but lots of people still do like Hal as HM..

Harwin is actually my second favourite choice :D for HM, in spite of his telling Arya that his loyalty was now to the small folk in general. Lots has happened since then.. but he may be with the BWB splinter group ( and Edric Dayne ?)

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Yes, while walking my dogs I was think ing about it.. I know low born is a bit off .. but I meant lower born than the manner of speaking of the HM ( little as he says ) would imply, and really less educated is more what I meant... And Hal can elevate his speech when necessary as also seen when he uses , "My Lords" when announcing Bran at the feast when Robb calls the banners... and I'm sure Hal would have requested to be Cat's guard again , if the question came up and he hadn't been otherwise deployed first.

I know you were putting Harwin forth, but lots of people still do like Hal as HM..

Harwin is actually my second favourite choice :D for HM, in spite of his telling Arya that his loyalty was now to the small folk in general. Lots has happened since then.. but he may be with the BWB splinter group ( and Edric Dayne ?)

Ahh, okay. I agree with you that Hal is most likely not a good bet for HM. But the more I look for Harwin, the more suspicious I get. Where is he? :lol:

Eta- I'm glad I'm not the only one who ponders such deep questions while walking the dog ;)

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Yipes! wading through Red Wedding and events surrounding it..also Merrett's epilogue.. Looks like Lame Lothar will be a big player. I suspect he'll out think Edwyn and Black Walder. They may cancel each other out. It's still looking like a Pile of puzzle pieces :D , but here's a little something I just noticed ( others may have put it together long since ).

From Merrett's epilogue , when he's trying to plead that the Freys lost people at the RW , too..

" ...and Ser Tytos, Jared’s son... someone smashed his head in with an axe... Stark’s direwolf killed four of our wolfhounds and tore the kennelmaster’s arm off his shoulder, even after we’d filled him full of quarrels...”

Matched with Arya and the Hound outside the Twins...

There was only the oncoming horseman and the longaxe in his hand. He wore a surcoat over his armor and she saw the two towers that marked him for a Frey. She did not understand. Her uncle was marrying Lord Frey’s daughter, the Freys were her brother’s friends. “Don’t!” she screamed as he rode around the wayn.....

......She hadn’t even dented his helm. They went round once, twice, a third time. The knight cursed her. “You can’t run for -”

The axehead caught him square in the back of the head, crashing through his helm and the skull beneath and sending him flying face first from his saddle. Behind him was the Hound, still mounted on Stranger.

So , thanks , Sandor . :D

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