Wednesday, September 23, 2015

A Dance with Dragons- Jon II

A Dance with Dragons (A Song of Ice and Fire, #5)

Jon tells Gilly that she needs to leave Castle Black and take Dalla's child with her. Dalla and Mance Rayder had a boy and Jon fears that Melisandre will burn him for his king's blood, so he sends Gilly away- but she has to leave her own child behind. Gilly understandably takes this hard. Jon then talks to Sam and they discuss the letter that Maester Aemon has written- it's a letter to King Tommen asserting that even though Stannis is at Caslte Black, they are not siding with him. Jon doesn't want to sign, but feels he must for the good of the Watch.

They then discuss the Others- Sam has been researching them in the archives. The upshot is that the oldest histories were written thousands of years after the events- and there are archmaesters who question all of it. He did discover that the children of the forest used to give the Night's Watch a hundred obsidian daggres every year during the Age of Heroes.

He says there are hundreds of books he hasn't gotten to yet, but Jon says there is no more time- he is sending Sam to Oldtown with Maester Aemon. He wants Sam to be a maester, and he wants to get Aemon out of Castle Black before Melisandre burns him for his Targaryen blood. There is a risk of course, as Aemon is 102, but Jon sees no other choice. They will sail on the Blackbird from Eastwatch, and Dareon will join them to try and raise men for the Watch. The plan for Gilly's baby is to send her to Horn Hill and claim she is Sam's bastard, where his mother and sisters will care for him.

Jon finds out that Stannis has sent two knights south on the kingsroad- Ser Richard Horpe and Ser Justin Massey. Obviously to serve as envoys- but to who? When Aemon, Sam and Gilly leave the old maester tells Jon  he left a book for him in his chambers- the Jade Compendium by Colloquo Votar, a Volantene who visited the lands of the Jade Sea.

Jon then assigns Bedwyck, also knows as Giant (he's short) to take command of Icemark, with forty men- twenty from the Watch and twenty from Stannis. He is initially opening just Icemark and Greyguard- he wants to send Janos Slynt to Greyguard, but Slynt refuses. When Slynt refuses a second chance, Jon tells the men to hang him. Then he decides to take care of it himself, as his father would have done. Stannis nods at him when it's done.


Interesting things happen here. Sam going to Oldtowen, Jon sending Mance's baby and of course Jon putting the sword down on Slynt. That will certainly show the Watch that he means what he says. And by doing it himself he shows that he is his father's son. It's an interesting dynamic with Stannis at the Wall- there is tension between them but respect as well.

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