Wednesday, July 6, 2016
A Dance with Dragons The Griffin Reborn
This week two very interesting chapters- we have Jon Connington returning to Westeros after many years and we get a peek at the Stormlands. Then we revisit Asha who is a prisoner of Stannis and on the way to Winterfell with him- but the snow and horrible weather are wreaking havoc on Stannis' army. So we get insights into very different but similar military commanders, one from the man himself and another from a Greyjoy perspective.
THE GRIFFIN REBORN
Jon Connington is back in Westeros and retakes the castle Griffin's Roost, his ancestral home. He uses his famed archers to shoot down the ravens they try to send out and we see that he can have a ruthless side.
As they neared the castle, he saw a third raven flap from the maester's tower, only to be feathered by Black Balaq himself. "Mo more messages," he told Ser Franklyn Flowers in the yard. The next thing to come flying from the maester's tower was the maester. The way his arms were flapping, he might have been mistaken for another bird.
Jon goes to the highest tower and looks over his reclaimed lands, and recalls doing so with Rhaegar when they were younger. We learn here that Jon apparently was in love with Rhaegar and he thinks about how he lost it all when he tried to defeat Robert during the rebellion. He had Robert trapped and was searching the town but the townsfolk were hiding Robert. Then Ned Stark and Hoster Tully arrived with an army and battle was joined, and Robert emerged and almost killed Jon. He has been Hand of the King, young and ambitious, but he was exiled after that by Rhaegar's father.
Jon reflects that he didn't want the blood of the town on his hands, after Myles Blackheart Toyne told him that Tywin Lannister would have burned the town to the ground to get Robert. Jon thinks that he failed since Robert lived and went on to kill Rhaegar. "I failed the father," he said, "but I will not fail the son."
The discipline of the Golden Company allows them to move swiftly, and they expect Ser Tristan Rivers to take Crow's Nest (house Morrigen) and LAswell Peake to take Rain House (house Wylde) quickly. Their elephants have not turned up yet as their fleet was scattered in storms. Halfmaester tells him that Dorne has two armies on standby and Jon sends a message to Dorne asking for support. They find out that Marq Mandrake has gone ashore at Estermont and had taken Greenstone.
When Aegon arrives he has three of the elephants and Lady Lemore is with him as well.
Lots of info- this is one of my favorite chapters. Again I am wondering who Lady Lemore really is.
Stannis is going to sacrifice some men who resorted to cannibalism as the army is bogged down in the snow and there is little to eat. This is from Asha's perspective. It's one hundred leagues (three hundred miles) from Winterfell to Deepwood Motte and they are stuck, although Asha thinks the northmen are having an easier time than the southrons.
They are surprised when riders come out of the snow - Tris Botley is with them, and Tycho Nestoris the banker from Braavos with a message from Jon- and Theon and Jeyne.
A tough chapter with burnings and the suffering of Stannis' men. Can Stannis's host survive and face the battle for Winterfell? And Tycho shows up to tell Stannis of the Karstark treachery.