Sunday, March 24, 2019

The reason the Direwolves attacked Tyrion

Potential Spoilers Below

I keep telling everyone that similarities between The Wheel of Time (TWOT) and A Song of Ice and Fire (ASOIAF) are vast even if there are those out there that say otherwise.

This is extremely long but it explains why the 3 direwolves; which are described as big as ponies when grown; attack Tyrion when he goes to Winterfell to present Bran a design for a saddle which would let him ride a horse again.  For those of you who don’t know I believe that Tyrion is based upon the Mat Cauthon character from the Wheel of Time.

Why the Darkhounds attacked Mat:

Striding to the center of the room, he planted himself atop the mosaic there, the ancient symbol of the Aes Sedai, ten feet across. It was an apt place. “Under this sign will he conquer.” That was what the Prophecy of Rhuidean said of him. He stood straddling the sinuous dividing line, one boot on the black teardrop that was now called the Dragon’s Fang and used to represent evil, the other on the white now called the Flame of Tar Valon. Some men said it stood for the Light. An appropriate place to meet this attack, between Light and darkness.

The fetid feel grew stronger, and a burned sulphur smell filled the air. Suddenly things moved, slinking away from the stairs like moonshadows, along the outside of the room. Slowly they resolved into three black dogs, darker than night and big as ponies. Eyes shining silver, they circled him warily. With the Power in him, he could hear their hearts beat, like deep drums pounding. He could not hear them breathe, though; perhaps they did not.

He channeled, and a sword was in his hands, its slightly curving, heron-marked blade seeming hammered out of fire. He had expected Myrddraal, or something even worse than the Eyeless, but for dogs, even Shadowspawn dogs, the sword would be enough. Whoever had sent them did not know him. Lan said he had very nearly reached the level of a blademaster, now, and the Warder was sparing enough with praise to make him think he might have passed on to that level already.

With snarls like bones being ground to dust, the dogs hurtled at him from three sides, faster than galloping horses.

He did not move until they were almost on him; then he flowed, one with the sword, move to move, as though dancing. In the blink of an eye the sword form called Whirlwind on the Mountain became The Wind Blows Over the Wall became Unfolding the Fan. Great black heads flew apart from black bodies, their dripping teeth, like burnished steel, still bared as they bounced across the floor. He was already stepping from the mosaic as the dark forms collapsed in twitching, bleeding heaps.

Laughing to himself, he let the sword go, though he held on to saidin, to the raging Power, the sweetness and the taint. Contempt slid along the out side of the Void. Dogs. Shadowspawn, certainly, but still just . . . Laughter died.

Slowly, the dead dogs and their heads were melting, settling into pools of liquid shadow that quivered slightly, as if alive. Their blood, fanned across the floor, trembled. Suddenly the smaller pools flowed across the floor in viscous streams to merge with the larger, which oozed away from the mosaic to mound higher and higher, until the three huge black dogs stood there once more, slavering and snarling as they gathered massive haunches under them.

He did not know why he felt surprise, dim outside the emptiness. Dogs, yes, but Shadowspawn. Whoever had sent them had not been as careless as he had thought. But they still did not know him.

Instead of reaching for the sword again, he channeled as he remembered doing once long ago. Howling, the huge dogs leaped, and a thick shaft of white light shot from his hands, like molten steel, like liquid fire. He swept it across the springing creatures; for an instant they became strange shadows of themselves, all colors reversed, and then they were made of sparkling motes that broke apart, smaller and smaller, until there was nothing.

He let go of the thing he had made, with a grim smile. A purple bar of light still seemed to cross his vision in afterimage.

Across the great chamber a piece of one of the columns crashed to the floor tiles. Where that bar of light—or whatever it had been; not light, exactly—had swung, neat slices were gone from the columns. A gaping swath cut half the width of the wall behind them.

“Did any of them bite you, or bleed on you?”

He spun at the sound of Moiraine’s voice; absorbed in what he had done, he had not heard her come up the stairs. She stood clutching her skirts with both hands, peering at him, face lost in moonshadow. She would have sensed the things the same way he did, but to be here so quickly she must have run. “The Maidens let you pass? Have you become Far Dareis Mai, Moiraine?”

“They grant me some privileges of a Wise One,” she said in a rush, impatience raw in her usually melodious voice. “I told the guards I had to speak with you urgently. Now, answer me! Did the Darkhounds bite you, or bleed on you? Did their saliva touch you?”

“No,” he answered slowly. Darkhounds. The little he knew he had gotten from old stories, the sort used to frighten children in the southlands. Some grown-ups believed, too. “Why should a bite worry you? You could Heal it. Does this mean the Dark One is free?” Enclosed in the Void as he was, even fear was distant.

The tales he had heard said the Darkhounds ran the night in the Wild Hunt, with the Dark One himself the hunter; they left no print on even the softest dirt, only on stone, and they would not stop until you faced and defeated them or put running water between you. Crossroads were supposed to be particularly dangerous places to meet them, and the time just after sunset or just before sunrise. He had seen enough old stories walking by now to believe that any of it could be true.

“No, not that, Rand.” She seemed to be regaining her self-control; her voice was silver chimes again, calm and cool. “They are only another kind of Shadowspawn, something that should never have been made. But their bite is death as surely as a dagger in the heart, and I do not think I could have Healed such a wound before it killed you. Their blood, even their saliva, is poison. A drop on the skin can kill, slowly, with great pain at the end. You are lucky there were only three. Unless you killed more before I arrived? Their packs are usually larger, as many as ten or twelve, or so say the scraps left from the War of the Shadow.”

Larger packs. He was not the only target in Rhuidean for one of the Forsaken. . . .

“We must speak of what you used to kill them,” Moiraine began, but he was already running as hard as he could, ignoring her cries to know where he was going and why.

Down flights of stairs, through darkened corridors where sleepy Maidens, roused by the pounding boots, peered at him in consternation from moonlit rooms. Through the front doors, where Lan stood restlessly with the two women on guard, his color-shifting Warder’s cloak about his shoulders, making parts of him seem to blend into the night.

“Where is Moiraine?” he shouted as Rand dashed by, but Rand leaped down the broad steps two at a time without replying.

The half-healed wound in his side clenched like a fist, pain he was only vaguely aware of inside the Void, by the time he reached the building he sought. It stood at the very edge of Rhuidean, far from the plaza, as far from the camp Moiraine shared with the Wise Ones as it was possible to be and remain in the city. The upper floors had collapsed in a mound of rubble that fanned out onto the cracked earth beyond the pavement. Only the bottom two floors remained whole. Refusing his body’s efforts to hunch over around the pain, he went in, still at a dead run.

Once the great antechamber, encircled by a stone balcony, had been tall; now it was taller, open to the night sky, its pale stone floor strewn with rubble from the collapse. In the moonshadows beneath the balcony, three Darkhounds were up on their hind legs, clawing and chewing at a bronze-clad door that shivered under their assault. The smell of burned sulphur hung strong in the air.

Remembering what had happened before, Rand darted to one side as he channeled, the shaft of liquid white fire streaking by the door as it destroyed the Shadowspawn. He had tried to make it less this time, to confine the destruction to the Darkhounds, but the thick wall at the far end of the chamber had a shadowed hole in it. Not all the way through, he thought—it was hard to tell by moonlight—but he would have to fine his control of this weapon.

The bronze sheathing on the door was tattered and torn as though the teeth and toenails of the Darkhounds really had been steel; lamplight shone through a number of small holes. There were pawprints in the floor-stones, but surprisingly few. Releasing saidin, he found a place where he would not cut his hand to shreds and pounded on the door. Suddenly the pain in his side was very real and present; he took a deep breath and tried to thrust it away. “Mat? It’s me, Rand! Open up, Mat!”

After a moment, the door opened a crack, letting out a spill of lamplight; Mat peered through doubtfully, then pulled the door wider, leaning against it as if he had run ten miles carrying a sack of rocks. Except for a silver foxhead medallion hanging around his neck, its eye shaped and shaded like the ancient Aes Sedai symbol, he was naked. The way Mat felt about Aes Sedai, Rand was surprised he had not sold the thing long since. Deeper in the room, a tall, golden-haired woman was calmly wrapping a blanket around herself. A Maiden, by the spears and buckler lying at her feet.

Rand hastily averted his eyes and cleared his throat. “I just wanted to make sure you were all right.”

“We’re fine.” Uneasily, Mat looked around the antechamber. “Now we are. You killed it, or something? I don’t want to know what it was, as long as it’s gone. It’s bloody hard on a man sometimes, being your friend.”

Not only a friend. Another ta’veren, and perhaps a key to victory in Tarmon Gai’don; anyone who wanted to strike at Rand had reason to strike at Mat, as well. But Mat always tried to deny both things. “They’re gone, Mat. Darkhounds. Three of them.”

“I told you I didn’t want to know,” Mat groaned. “Darkhounds now. I can’t say it isn’t always something new around you. A man wouldn’t get bored; not until the day he died. If I hadn’t been on my feet for a drink of wine when the door started to open . . .” He trailed off, shivering, and scratched a red place on his right arm as he studied the ravaged metal sheathing. “You know, it’s funny how the mind plays tricks. When I was putting everything I had into holding this door shut, I could have sworn one of them had chewed a hole right through it. I could see its bloody head. And its teeth. Melindhra’s spear didn’t even faze it.”

Moiraine’s arrival was more spectacular this time, running in, skirts held up, panting and fuming. Lan was at her heels with his sword in hand and thunderclouds on his stone face, and right behind, a throng of Far Dareis Mai that spilled out into the street. Some of the Maidens wore no more than smallclothes, but every one held her spears alertly and had her shoufa wrapped around her head, black veil hiding all but her eyes, ready to kill. Moiraine and Lan, at least, looked relieved to see him standing there calmly talking to Mat, though the Aes Sedai also looked as if she meant to have strong words with him. With the veils, it was impossible to tell what the Aiel thought.

Letting out a loud yelp, Mat darted back into his room and began hastily tugging on a pair of breeches, his capering impeded by the way he kept trying to haul at the breeches and scratch his arm at the same time. The golden-haired Maiden watched with a broad grin that threatened to break into laughter.

“What’s the matter with your arm?” Rand asked.

“I told you the mind plays funny tricks,” Mat said, still trying to scratch and pull at the same time. “When I thought that thing chewed through the door, I thought it slobbered all over my arm, too, and now it bloody itches like fire. Even looks like a burn there.”

Rand opened his mouth, but Moiraine was already pushing past him. Staring at her, Mat fell down while frantically dragging his breeches on the rest of the way, but she knelt beside him, ignoring his protests, clasping his head in her hands. Rand had been Healed before, and seen it done, but instead of what he expected, Mat only gave a shiver and lifted up the medallion by its leather thong so that it hung against his hand.

“Bloody thing is colder than ice all of a sudden,” he muttered. “What are you doing, Moiraine? If you want to do something, Heal this itch; it has my whole arm now.” His right arm was red from wrist to shoulder, and had begun to look puffy.

Moiraine stared at him with the most startled expression Rand had ever seen on her face. Maybe the only one. “I will,” she said slowly. “If the medallion is cold, take it off.”

Mat frowned at her, then finally pulled it over his head and laid it beside him. She took his head again, and he gave a shout as if he had been ducked headfirst into ice; his legs stiffened and his back arched; his eyes stared at nothing, as wide as they would go. When Moiraine took her hands away, he slumped, gulping air. The redness and swelling were gone. It took three tries before he could speak. “Blood and ashes! Does it have to be that flaming way every flaming time? It was just a bloody itch!”

“You watch your tongue with me,” Moiraine told him, getting up, “or I will find Nynaeve and put her in charge of you.” But her heart was not in it; she could have been talking in her sleep. She was trying not to stare at the foxhead as Mat hung it back around his neck. “You will need rest,” she said absently. “Stay in bed tomorrow, if you feel like it.”

The Maiden in the blanket—Melindhra?—knelt behind Mat and put her hands on his shoulders, looking up at Moiraine over his head. “I will see that he does as you say, Aes Sedai.” With a sudden grin, she ruffled his hair. “He is my little mischief maker, now.” From the horrified look on Mat’s face, he was gathering his strength to run.

Rand became aware of soft, amused chuckles behind him. The Maidens, shoufas and veils around their shoulders now, had crowded around and were peering into the room.

“Teach him to sing, spear-sister,” Adelin said, and the other Maidens crowed with laughter.

Rand rounded on them firmly. “Let the man rest. Don’t some of you have to put on clothes?” They gave way reluctantly, still trying to peer into the room, until Moiraine came out.

“Will you leave us, please?” the Aes Sedai said as the mangled door banged shut behind her. She half looked back with a vexed tightening of her mouth. “I must speak with Rand al’Thor alone.” Nodding, the Aiel women started for the door, some still jesting about whether Melindhra—a Shaido, it seemed; Rand wondered if Mat knew that—would teach Mat to sing. Whatever that meant.

Rand stopped Adelin with a hand on her bare arm; others who noticed stopped as well, so he spoke to them all. “If you will not go when I tell you to, what will you do if I have to use you in battle?” He did not intend to if he could help it; he knew they were fierce warriors, but he had been raised to believe it was a man’s place to die if necessary before a woman had to. Logic might say it was foolish, especially with women like this, but that was how he felt. He knew better than to tell them that, however. “Will you think it a joke, or decide to go in your own good time?”

They looked at him with the consternation of those listening to someone who had revealed his ignorance of the simplest facts. “In the dance of spears,” Adelin told him, “we will go as you direct, but this is not the dance. Besides, you did not tell us to go.”

“Even the Car’a’carn is not a wetlander king,” a gray-haired Maiden added. Sinewy and hard despite her age, she wore only a short shift and her shoufa. He was getting tired of that phrase.

The Maidens resumed their joking as they left him alone with Moiraine and Lan. The Warder had finally put up his sword, and looked as at ease as he ever did. Which was to say as still and calm as his face, all stony planes and angles in the moonlight, and with an air of being on the brink of sudden movement that made the Aiel appear placid in comparison. A braided leather cord held Lan’s hair, graying at the temples, back from his face. His gaze could have come from a blue-eyed hawk.

“I must speak with you about—” Moiraine began.

“We can talk tomorrow,” Rand said, cutting her off. Lan’s face hardened further, if such was possible; Warders were far more protective of their Aes Sedai, of their position as well as their persons, than they were of themselves. Rand ignored Lan. His side still wanted to hunch him over, but he managed to keep erect; he was not about to show her any weakness. “If you think I’ll help you get that foxhead away from Mat, you can think again.” Somehow that medallion had stopped her channeling. Or at least it had stopped her channeling from affecting Mat while he touched it. “He paid a hard price for it, Moiraine, and it is his.” Thinking of how she had thumped his shoulders with the Power, he added dryly, “Maybe I’ll ask if I can borrow it from him.” He turned away from her. There was still one he had to check on, though one way or another the urgency was gone; the Darkhounds would have done what they intended by now.

“Please, Rand,” Moiraine said, and the open pleading in her voice halted him in his tracks. He had never heard anything like that from her before.

The tone seemed to offend Lan. “I thought you had become a man,” the Warder said harshly. “Is this how a man behaves? You act like an arrogant boy.” Lan practiced the sword with him—and liked him, Rand thought—but if Moiraine said the right word, the Warder would do his best to kill him.

“I will not be with you forever,” Moiraine said urgently. Her hands gripped her skirts so hard that they trembled. “I might die in the next attack. I could fall from my horse and break my neck, or take a Darkfriend’s arrow through my heart, and death cannot be Healed. I have given my entire life to the search for you, to find you and help you. You still do not know your own strength; you cannot know half of what you do. I—apologize—most humbly for any offense I have given you.” Those words—words he had never thought to hear from her—came out as if dragged, but they came; and she could not lie. “Let me help you as much as I can, while I can. Please.”

“It’s hard to trust you, Moiraine.” He disregarded Lan, shifting in the moonlight; his attention was all on her. “You have handled me like a puppet, made me dance the way you wanted, from the day we met. The only times I’ve been free of you were either when you were far away or when I ignored you. And you make even that hard.”

Her laugh was as silvery as the moon above, but bitterness tinged it. “It has been more like wrestling with a bear than pulling strings on a puppet. Do you want an oath not to try manipulating you? I give it.” Her voice hardened to crystal. “I even swear to obey you like one of the Maidens—like one of the gai’shain, if you require—but you must—” Taking a deep breath, she began again, more softly. “I ask you, humbly, to allow me to help you.”

Lan was staring at her, and Rand thought his own eyes must be popping out of his head. “I will accept your help,” he said slowly. “And I apologize, too. For all the rudeness I’ve shown.” He had the feeling he was still being manipulated—he had had good cause to be rude, when he was—but she could not lie.

Tension drained from her visibly. She stepped closer to look up at him. “What you used to kill the Darkhounds is called balefire. I can still sense the residue of it here.” He could, too, like the fading smell remaining after a pie was carried out of the room, or the memory of something just snatched out of sight. “Since before the Breaking of the World, the use of balefire has been forbidden. The White Tower forbids us even to learn it. In the War of Power, the Forsaken and the Shadowsworn themselves used it only reluctantly.”

“Forbidden?” Rand said, frowning. “I saw you use it once.” He could not be sure in the pale light of the moon, but he thought color flamed in her cheeks. For this once, perhaps she was the one off balance.

“Sometimes it is necessary to do that which is forbidden.” If she was flustered, it did not show in her voice. “When anything is destroyed with balefire, it ceases to exist before the moment of its destruction, like a thread that burns away from where the flame touched it. The greater the power of the balefire, the further back in time it ceases to exist. The strongest I can manage will remove only a few seconds from the Pattern. You are much stronger. Very much so.”

“But if it doesn’t exist before you destroy it . . .” Rand raked fingers through his hair in confusion.

“You begin to see the problems, the dangers? Mat remembers seeing one of the Darkhounds chew through the door, but there is no opening, now. If it had slavered on him as much as he remembers, he would have been dead before I could reach him. For as far back as you destroyed the creature, whatever it did during that time no longer happened. Only the memories remain, for those who saw or experienced it. Only what it did before is real, now. A few tooth holes in the door, and one drop of saliva on Mat’s arm.”

“That sounds just fine to me,” he told her. “Mat’s alive because of it.”

“It is terrible, Rand.” An urgent note entered her voice. “Why do you think even the Forsaken feared to use it? Think of the effect on the Pattern of a single thread, one man, removed from hours, or days, that have already been woven, like one thread picked partly out of a piece of cloth. Fragments of manuscripts remaining from the War of Power say several entire cities were destroyed with balefire before both sides realized the dangers. Hundreds of thousands of threads pulled from the Pattern, gone for days already past; whatever those people had done, now no longer had been done, and neither had what others had done because of their actions. The memories remained, but not the actions. The ripples were incalculable. The Pattern itself nearly unraveled. It could have been the destruction of everything. World, time, Creation itself.”

Rand shivered, nothing to do with the cold cutting through his coat. “I can’t promise not to use it again, Moiraine. You yourself said there are times when it’s necessary to do what’s forbidden.”

“I did not think that you would,” she said coolly. Her agitation was vanishing, her balance restored. “But you must be careful.” She was back to “must” again. “With a sa’angreal like Callandor, you could annihilate a city with balefire. The Pattern could be disrupted for years to come. Who can say that the weave would even remain centered on you, ta’veren as you are, until it settled down? Being ta’veren, and so strongly so, may be your margin of victory, even in the Last Battle.”

“Perhaps it will,” he said bleakly. In tale after heroic tale, the protagonist proclaimed he would have victory or death. It seemed that the best he could hope for was victory and death. “I have to check on someone,” he went on quietly. “I will see you in the morning.” Gathering the Power into him, life and death in swirling layers, he made a hole in the air taller than he was, opening into blackness that made the moonlight seem day. A gateway, Asmodean called it.

“What is that?” Moiraine gasped.

“Once I’ve done something, I remember how. Most of the time.” That was no answer, but it was time to test Moiraine’s vows. She could not lie, but Aes Sedai could find loopholes in a stone. “You are to leave Mat alone tonight. And you won’t try to take that medallion away from him.”

“It belongs in the Tower for study, Rand. It must be a ter’angreal, but none has ever been found that—”

“Whatever it is,” he said firmly, “it is his. You will leave it with him.”

Why the Direwolves attacked Tyrion:

Robb put a hand on his shoulder. “You said you had business with Bran. Well, here he is, Lannister.”

Bran was uncomfortably aware of Tyrion Lannister’s eyes. One was black and one was green, and both were looking at him, studying him, weighing him. “I am told you were quite the climber, Bran,” the little man said at last. “Tell me, how is it you happened to fall that day?”

“I never,” Bran insisted. He never fell, never never never.

“The child does not remember anything of the fall, or the climb that came before it,” said Maester Luwin gently.

“Curious,” said Tyrion Lannister.

“My brother is not here to answer questions, Lannister,” Robb said curtly. “Do your business and be on your way.”

“I have a gift for you,” the dwarf said to Bran. “Do you like to ride, boy?”

Maester Luwin came forward. “My lord, the child has lost the use of his legs. He cannot sit a horse.”

“Nonsense,” said Lannister. “With the right horse and the right saddle, even a cripple can ride.”

The word was a knife through Bran’s heart. He felt tears come unbidden to his eyes. “I’m not a cripple!”

“Then I am not a dwarf,” the dwarf said with a twist of his mouth. “My father will rejoice to hear it.” Greyjoy laughed.

“What sort of horse and saddle are you suggesting?” Maester Luwin asked.

“A smart horse,” Lannister replied. “The boy cannot use his legs to command the animal, so you must shape the horse to the rider, teach it to respond to the reins, to the voice. I would begin with an unbroken yearling, with no old training to be unlearned,” He drew a rolled paper from his belt. “Give this to your saddler. He will provide the rest.”

Maester Luwin took the paper from the dwarf’s hand, curious as a small grey squirrel. He unrolled it, studied it. “I see. You draw nicely, my lord. Yes, this ought to work. I should have thought of this myself.”

“It came easier to me, Maester. It is not terribly unlike my own saddles.”

“Will I truly be able to ride?” Bran asked. He wanted to believe them, but he was afraid. Perhaps it was just another lie. The crow had promised him that he could fly.

“You will,” the dwarf told him. “And I swear to you, boy, on horseback you will be as tall as any of them.”

Robb Stark seemed puzzled. “Is this some trap, Lannister? What’s Bran to you? Why should you want to help him?”

“Your brother Jon asked it of me. And I have a tender spot in my heart for cripples and bastards and broken things.” Tyrion Lannister placed a hand over his heart and grinned.

The door to the yard flew open. Sunlight came streaming across the hall as Rickon burst in, breathless. The direwolves were with him. The boy stopped by the door, wide-eyed, but the wolves came on. Their eyes found Lannister, or perhaps they caught his scent. Summer began to growl first. Grey Wind picked it up. They padded toward the little man, one from the right and one from the left.

“The wolves do not like your smell, Lannister,” Theon Greyjoy commented.

“Perhaps it’s time I took my leave,” Tyrion said. He took a step backward … and Shaggydog came out of the shadows behind him, snarling. Lannister recoiled, and Summer lunged at him from the other side. He reeled away, unsteady on his feet, and Grey Wind snapped at his arm, teeth ripping at his sleeve and tearing loose a scrap of cloth.

“No!” Bran shouted from the high seat as Lannister’s men reached for their steel. “Summer, here. Summer, to me!”

The direwolf heard the voice, glanced at Bran, and again at Lannister. He crept backward, away from the little man, and settled down below Bran’s dangling feet.

Robb had been holding his breath. He let it out with a sigh and called, “Grey Wind.” His direwolf moved to him, swift and silent. Now there was only Shaggy dog, rumbling at the small man, his eyes burning like green fire.

“Rickon, call him,” Bran shouted to his baby brother, and Rickon remembered himself and screamed, “Home, Shaggy, home now.” The black wolf gave Lannister one final snarl and bounded off to Rickon, who hugged him tightly around the neck.

Tyrion Lannister undid his scarf, mopped at his brow, and said in a flat voice, “How interesting.”

“Are you well, my lord?” asked one of his men, his sword in hand. He glanced nervously at the direwolves as he spoke.

“My sleeve is torn and my breeches are unaccountably damp, but nothing was harmed save my dignity.”

Even Robb looked shaken. “The wolves … I don’t know why they did that …”

“No doubt they mistook me for dinner.” Lannister bowed stiffly to Bran. “I thank you for calling them off, young ser. I promise you, they would have found me quite indigestible. And now I will be leaving, truly.”

“A moment, my lord,” Maester Luwin said. He moved to Robb and they huddled close together, whispering. Bran tried to hear what they were saying, but their voices were too low.

Robb Stark finally sheathed his sword. “I … I may have been hasty with you,” he said. “You’ve done Bran a kindness, and, well …” Robb composed himself with an effort. “The hospitality of Winterfell is yours if you wish it, Lannister.”

“Spare me your false courtesies, boy. You do not love me and you do not want me here. I saw an inn outside your walls, in the winter town. I’ll find a bed there, and both of us will sleep easier. For a few coppers I may even find a comely wench to warm the sheets for me.” He spoke to one of the black brothers, an old man with a twisted back and a tangled beard. “Yoren, we go south at daybreak. You will find me on the road, no doubt.” With that he made his exit, struggling across the hall on his short legs, past Rickon and out the door. His men followed.

The short answer to the question is because it was a homage to Rand saving Mat.  I just had to take the long road to fully explain it through both author’s words.

Comments encouraged.  Love to hear the idea’s of others.  Most believe that since I present my idea’s as “fact like” I’m not open to change my viewpoints which is far from the truth.  I simply look at the information presented and go from there.  If you can shine a light on another way of thinking that opens the door to debate.

What cryptic message will the Night King leave behind?

Potential Spoilers Below

I keep telling everyone that similarities between The Wheel of Time (TWOT) and A Song of Ice and Fire (ASOIAF) are vast even if there are those out there that say otherwise.

Tormund, Edd and Beric who are in CB, find a kind of weird message on the walls made by the king of the night, which will intrigue us all. After these events, the king of the night will attack CB and thus the episode will end.  Below is what I think the Night King’s message will correlate to and then I will tell you what I think it says.

“What was written on the walls in the dungeon. There were few problems with translation. Most was the usual—blasphemy and boasting; Trollocs seem to know little else—but there was one part done in a better hand. An educated Darkfriend, or perhaps a Myrddraal. It could be only taunting, yet it has the form of poetry, or song, and the sound of prophecy. We know little of prophecies from the Shadow, Mother.”

The Amyrlin hesitated only a moment before nodding. Prophecies from the Shadow, dark prophecies, had an unfortunate way of being fulfilled as well as prophecies from the Light. “Read it to me.”

Verin ruffled through the pages, then cleared her throat and began in a calm, level voice.

The first 2 lines were blotted out by Rand al’Thor because he didn’t want anyone associating him with Darkfriends; as he was first to arrive to the dungeons. 


Daughter of the Night, she walks again.
The ancient war, she yet fights.
Her new lover she seeks, who shall serve her and die, yet serve still.
Who shall stand against her coming?
The Shining Walls shall kneel.
Blood feeds blood.
Blood calls blood.
Blood is, and blood was, and blood shall ever be.

The man who channels stands alone.
He gives his friends for sacrifice.
Two roads before him, one to death beyond dying, one to life eternal.
Which will he choose? Which will he choose?
What hand shelters? What hand slays?
Blood feeds blood.
Blood calls blood.
Blood is, and blood was, and blood shall ever be.

Luc came to the Mountains of Dhoom.
Isam waited in the high passes.
The hunt is now begun. The Shadow’s hounds now course, and kill.
One did live, and one did die, but both are.
The Time of Change has come.
Blood feeds blood.
Blood calls blood.
Blood is, and blood was, and blood shall ever be.

The Watchers wait on Toman’s Head.
The seed of the Hammer burns the ancient tree.
Death shall sow, and summer burn, before the Great Lord comes.
Death shall reap, and bodies fail, before the Great Lord comes.
Again the seed slays ancient wrong, before the Great Lord comes.
Now the Great Lord comes.
Now the Great Lord comes.
Blood feeds blood.
Blood calls blood.
Blood is, and blood was, and blood shall ever be.
Now the Great Lord comes.”

For any who have read my theories you know I believe that Jon Snow is a man of destiny, as most of us do, but I believe he has lived before; although not yet if that makes sense.  I think the Night King remembers Jon albeit under a different name.  Click here to see my theory.

The message that the Night King leaves will be to Jon Snow but he won’t know it because that isn’t his name yet.  The message that he leaves behind will be associated with the 2 lines that Rand blotted off the dungeon wall.


The Night Kings message will go something like this:


The ______ is the name the man without a true name will chose for himself in the end; from which his descendants will become legendary.

Comments encouraged.  Love to hear the idea’s of others.  Most believe that since I present my idea’s as “fact like” I’m not open to change my viewpoints which is far from the truth.  I simply look at the information presented and go from there.  If you can shine a light on another way of thinking that opens the door to debate.

Saturday, March 23, 2019

Arya’s new weapon

Potential Spoilers Below

I was looking at the trailer again and every time I do it seems to me that Arya is fighting with an ashandarei like Mat from the Wheel of Time.  In the old tongue it meant “sword spear.”  Mat had exceptional skill with the quarterstaff and when he received the ashandarei he was even more dangerous.  In the trailer it is blurry but there seems to be a blade of some type at one end.  I loved this part of the books as it showed Mat as someone to be reckoned with.  Below shows his fighting skill in a wager he made while sick and still recovering against 2 experienced swordsmen.


“Swords aren’t the be-all and end-all, you know. I could do fairly well against either of you, I think, if you had a sword and I had my quarterstaff.”

Gawyn’s cough was obviously meant to swallow a laugh. Much too politely, he said, “You must be very good.” Galad’s face was frankly disbelieving.

Perhaps it was that they both clearly thought he was making a wild boast. Perhaps it was because he had mishandled questioning the guardsman. Perhaps it was because Else, who had such an eye for the boys, wanted nothing to do with him, and all those women were staring at Galad like cats watching a jug of cream. Aes Sedai and Accepted or not, they were still women. All these explanations ran through Mat’s head, but he rejected them angrily, especially the last. He was going to do it because it would be fun. And it might earn some coin. His luck would not even have to be back.

“I will wager,” he said, “two silver marks to two from each of you that I can beat both of you at once, just the way I said. You can’t have fairer odds than that. There are two of you, and one of me, so two to one are fair odds.” He almost laughed aloud at the consternation on their faces.

“Mat,” Gawyn said, “there’s no need to make wagers. You have been sick. Perhaps we will try this some time when you are stronger.”

“It would be far from a fair wager,” Galad said. “I’ll not take your wager, now or later. You are from the same village as Egwene, are you not? I . . . I would not have her angry with me.”

“What does she have to do with it? Thump me once with one of your swords, and I will hand over a silver mark to each of you. If I thump you till you quit, you give me two each. Don’t you think you can do it?”

“This is ridiculous,” Galad said. “You would have no chance against one trained swordsman, let alone two. I’ll not take such advantage.”

“Do you think that?” asked a gravel voice. The blocky Warder joined them, thick black eyebrows pulled down in a scowl. “You think you two are good enough with your swords to take a boy with a stick?”

“It would not be fair, Hammar Gaidin,” Galad said.

“He has been sick,” Gawyn added. “There is no need for this.”

“To the yard,” Hammar grated with a jerk of his head back over his shoulder. Galad and Gawyn gave Mat regretful looks, then obeyed. The Warder eyed Mat up and down doubtfully. “Are you sure you’re up to this, lad? Now I take a close look at you, you ought to be in a sickbed.”

“I am already out of one,” Mat said, “and I’m up to it. I have to be. I don’t want to lose my two marks.”

Hammar’s heavy brows rose in surprise. “You mean to hold to that wager, lad?”

“I need the money.” Mat laughed.

His laughter cut off abruptly as he turned toward the nearest stand that held quarterstaffs and his knees almost buckled. He stiffened them so quickly he thought anyone who noticed would think he had just stumbled. At the stand he took his time choosing out a staff, nearly two inches thick and almost a foot taller than he was. I have to win this. I opened my fool mouth, and now I have to win. I can’t afford to lose those two marks. Without those to build on, it will take forever to win the money I need.

When he turned back, the quarterstaff in both hands before him, Gawyn and Galad were already waiting out where they had been practicing. I have to win. “Luck,” he muttered. “Time to toss the dice.”

Hammar gave him an odd look. “You speak the Old Tongue, lad?”

Mat stared back at him for a moment, not speaking. He felt cold to the bone. With an effort, he made his feet start out onto the practice yard. “Remember the wager,” he said loudly. “Two silver marks from each of you against two from me.”

A buzz rose from the Accepted as they realized what was happening. The Aes Sedai watched in silence. Disapproving silence.

Gawyn and Galad split apart, one to either side of him, keeping their distance, neither with his sword more than half-raised.

“No wager,” Gawyn said. “There’s no wager.”

At the same time, Galad said, “I’ll not take your money like this.”

“I mean to take yours,” Mat said.

“Done!” Hammar roared. “If they have not the nerve to cover your wager, lad, I’ll pay the score myself.”

“Very well,” Gawyn said. “If you insist on it—done!”

Galad hesitated a moment more before growling, “Done, then. Let us put an end to this farce.”

The moment’s warning was all Mat needed. As Galad rushed at him, he slid his hands along the quarterstaff and pivoted. The end of the staff thudded into the tall man’s ribs, bringing a grunt and a stumble. Mat let the staff bounce off Galad and spun, carrying it on around just as Gawyn came within range. The staff dipped, darted under Gawyn’s practice sword, and clipped his ankle out from under him. As Gawyn fell, Mat completed the spin in time to catch Galad across his upraised wrist, sending his practice sword flying. As if his wrist did not pain him at all, Galad threw himself into a smooth, rolling dive and came up with his sword in both hands.

Ignoring him for the moment, Mat half turned, twisting his wrists to whip the length of the staff back beside him. Gawyn, just starting to rise, took the blow on the side of his head with a loud thump only partly softened by the padding of hair. He went down in a heap.

Mat was only vaguely aware of an Aes Sedai rushing out to tend Elayne’s fallen brother. I hope he’s all right. He should be. I’ve hit myself harder than that falling off a fence. He still had Galad to deal with, and from the way Galad was poised on the balls of his feet, sword raised precisely, he had begun to take Mat seriously.

Mat’s legs chose that moment to tremble. Light, I can’t weaken now. But he could feel it creeping back in, the wobbly feeling, the hunger as if he had not eaten for days. If I wait for him to come to me, I’ll fall on my face. It was hard to keep his knees straight as he started forward. Luck, stay with me.

From the first blow, he knew that luck, or skill, or whatever had brought him this far, was still there. Galad managed to turn that one with a sharp clack, and the next, and the next, and the next, but strain stiffened his face. That smooth swordsman, almost as good as the Warders, fought with every ounce of his skill to keep Mat’s staff from him. He did not attack; it was all he could do to defend. He moved continually to the side, trying not to be forced back, and Mat pressed him, staff a blur. And Galad stepped back, stepped back again, wooden blade a thin shield against the quarterstaff.

Hunger gnawed at Mat as if he had swallowed weasels. Sweat rolled down into his eyes, and his strength began to fade as if it leached out with the sweat. Not yet. I can’t fall yet. I have to win. Now. With a roar, he threw all his reserves into one last surge.

The quarterstaff flickered past Galad’s sword and in quick succession struck knee, wrist, and ribs and finally thrust into Galad’s stomach like a spear. With a groan, Galad folded over, fighting not to fall. The staff quivered in Mat’s hands, on the point of a final crushing thrust to the throat. Galad sank to the ground.

Mat almost dropped the quarterstaff when he realized what he had been about to do. Win, not kill. Light, what was I thinking? Reflexively he grounded the butt of the staff, and as soon he did, he had to clutch at it to hold himself erect. Hunger hollowed him like a knife reaming marrow from a bone. Suddenly he realized that not only the Aes Sedai and Accepted were watching. All practice, all learning, had stopped. Warders and students alike stood watching him.

Hammar moved to stand beside Galad, still groaning on the ground and trying to push himself up. The Warder raised his voice to shout, “Who was the greatest blademaster of all time?”

From the throats of dozens of students came a massed bellow. “Jearom, Gaidin!”

“Yes!” Hammar shouted, turning to make sure all heard. “During his lifetime, Jearom fought over ten thousand times, in battle and single combat. He was defeated once. By a farmer with a quarterstaff! Remember that. Remember what you just saw.” He lowered his eyes to Galad, and lowered his voice as well. “If you cannot get up by now, lad, it is finished.” He raised a hand, and the Aes Sedai and Accepted rushed to surround Galad.

Comments encouraged.  Love to hear the idea’s of others.  Most believe that since I present my idea’s as “fact like” I’m not open to change my viewpoints which is far from the truth.  I simply look at the information presented and go from there.  If you can shine a light on another way of thinking that opens the door to debate.