A Dance With Dragons is the fifth novel in George R. R. Martin’s ongoing fantasy series, A Song of Ice and Fire. Much of the novel’s action coincides with events from the previous novel, A Feast for Crows. However, A Dance With Dragons focuses on different characters, and while the previous novel focused on events around King’s Landing, the capital of Westeros, much of A Dance With Dragons takes place in the far north of Westeros and in the lands across the Narrow Sea.
Jon Snow is the 998th Lord Commander of the Men of the Night’s Watch. Snow is charged with command of “The Wall,” a massive barrier built in the far north of Westeros to defend the realm from the undead, known as the “Others.” Sadly, the true purpose of the Wall has long been forgotten, and most people feel that the Night’s Watch only protects the realm from wildlings. Now, few realize that the dead are returning to attack the realms of men. Though young, Jon sees the danger that the undead pose to the Night’s Watch, and his solution is shocking to his men: Jon offers the wildlings sanctuary south of the Wall. Though the wildlings are considered savage and undisciplined by the men of the Night’s Watch, Jon argues that they will serve as an asset to the Wall as fighters. And if they remain north of the Wall, they will die in the harsh winter and return as Others to attack the realm.
King Stannis Baratheon approves of Jon’s plan, though his approval is not of great help to the Lord Commander. Stannis claims the Iron Throne of Westeros, but commands few men and carries the allegiance of very few lords. In fact, Stannis’ castle is in the south of Westeros, but he has come to the north in response to the Watch’s call for help and in order to secure the North of Westeros for himself. When A Dance With Dragons opens, the North, which has long been justly ruled by the Starks, has been given by the Lannisters to the Starks’ ancestral rivals, the House of Bolton. Stannis and his Hand, Ser Davos Seaworth, begin to entreat the northerners to gather support.
Tyrion Lannister finds himself without any support. Having been found guilty of killing his nephew, King Joffrey, and having killed his father, Lord Tywin Lannister, Tyrion is forced to flee Westeros by ship. He spends his journey drinking as he recalls his final confrontation with his father. When Tyrion lands, he finds himself in...
(The entire section is 1632 words.)
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Varamyr is a warg, moving in the north beyond the Wall with a pack of wolves. He smells men and when he comes upon a man, he thinks about eating its flesh. His teacher, Haggon, had always told him that to eat the flesh of man, to mate with wolf as wolf, or to enter the mind of another man was an abomination. However, Varamyr ate Haggon's heart. Haggon had also warned against joining with any creature but wolves, explaining that skinchangers take on the personality of the animal they join. Varamyr's wound has opened again and he reflects that he should have entered the mind of one of his companions before they left him. The wildlings, once unified under Mance Rayder, have now dispersed. Some have followed raiders into the distant north, some have traveled east in the hope of meeting a fleet, and others have gone their own way. Varamyr has died nine times in the minds of animals, but now he faces his true death and his second life. When his true death comes, Varamyr enters the minds of the entire forest—oaks, worms, ravens—before settling into the mind of the wolf, One Eye. He lopes with the pack until they smell something new. It is a woman Varamyr had known as Thistle, but now icicles hang from her fingers like knives and pale blue light shines in her eyes. One Eye realizes that it sees him.
(The entire section is 241 words.)
Chapter 1 Summary
Tyrion Lannister, a dwarf and a drunk, has imbibed his way across the Narrow Sea in a small cabin. He thinks about how he murdered his father, Tywin Lannister, and Shae, a whore but also his former lover, who Tyrion found in his father's bed with the chain of the Hand of the King around her neck. He wonders where his first love, Tysha, has gone. When he asked his father, Tywin had replied "wherever whores go." Now, Tyrion wonders where whores go. The ship rolls back and forth in a storm before it finally arrives in Pentos, where Tyrion meets Magister Illyrio Mopatis, who introduces himself as a friend of Varys. He does not trust Illyrio and considers what he should do next. He could go to the Wall, or he could go to Dorne and try to crown Myrcella. Should he atone for his sins or go forth and make new ones? When he sups with Magister Illyrio, the latter informs Tyrion that Stannis is at the Wall and his sister, Queen Cersei, has put a price on his head; he points out that Myrcella will never take the Seven Kingdoms. However, there is a way for Tyrion to inherit Casterly Rock. Illyrio points out that Westeros craves peace and that it will soon lack for food as well. It needs a savior, such as a dragon with three heads.
(The entire section is 232 words.)
Chapter 2 Summary
Daenerys Targaryen (Dany) sits on an ebon bench, her throne in Meereen, surrounded by her supporters. Irri and Jhiqui, her Dothraki handmaids, address her as "khaleesi" and advise against touching the dead man being brought to her. Ser Barristan Selmy of Westeros, who addresses Dany as "Your Grace," points out that she does not have to be there. Grey Worm, the leader of her freed Unsullied troops, lowers his torch to show Dany her fallen soldiers, murdered by the Sons of the Harpy, Meereenese that object to Dany's conquest. After, Barristan announces that the Unsullied are unsuited for unraveling secrets. Dany reflects that Daario Naharis and his Stormcrows might do better, but she has sent them to Lhazar in the hopes of reopening trade routes. She summons Reznak mo Reznak and Skahaz Shavepate, a meeting that demands she wear a tokar, a wrap-around garment that signifies that the wearer is a master rather than a slave. She wears the garment reluctantly so that the people of Meereen will not look at her as a barbarian. Even Brown Ben Plumm of the Second Sons advises her to do so. Dany hopes to win over the Meereeenese, however much she despises them for their enslaving of others. Renzak and the Shavepate explain that the families of the old slavers are plotting in their pyramids. Skahaz argues that their blood must pay for the shed blood of Dany's followers. Reznak, whom Dany distrusts, suggests that such actions will only bring destruction. Dany holds court and listens as a representative of King Cleon of Astapor invites Dany to join Cleon in an invasion of Yunkai. Next, Hizdahr zo Loraq approaches, asking for Dany's permission to reopen the fighting pits. She denies him. Others come seeking compensation for lost sheep that Dany's dragons—Viserion, Rhaegal, and Drogon—have eaten. The last man brings bones as well, but not of sheep. They are the burnt bones of a child, killed by Drogon.
(The entire section is 326 words.)
Chapter 3 Summary
Jon dreams that he is Ghost, running through the woods near the Wall in the far north of Westeros. There were once six direwolves in the family, but now only four remain. He wakes to the sound of Lord Mormont's old raven yelling "Snow" at him, and he wonders if Bran or Rickon might still be alive within their direwolves. Dolorous Edd brings him breakfast and news that more wildlings have come seeking protection from the Others on the south side of the Wall. Jon is summoned to meet with Stannis, though he must pass the training ground along the way, where Stannis's men challenge him disrespectfully. He meets Sam, who has been reading about archery, on the way to the king. Stannis is accompanied by Melisandre, his red-haired priestess. Stannis wants Jon to sign over the abandoned castles along the Wall, which he will give to his followers. The men of the Night's Watch take no part in the politics of the realm, so Jon refuses. Instead, he suggests that Stannis offer him men to fill the castles under the leadership of the Night's Watch. Stannis is angry that Jon refuses to cooperate. He is angry at the northern lords as well. Only Karhold has agreed to support Stannis, while the others still miss Robb Stark. Jon leaves Stannis with Melisandre, who warns Jon that her fires show him surrounded by enemies.
(The entire section is 233 words.)
Chapter 4 Summary
Bran has not eaten anything but ground acorns for days. He, Meera, Jojen, Hodor, and Bran's direwolf, Summer, follow Coldhands, an unusual ranger. Coldhands has black hands, wears a black cloak of the Night's Watch, and rides an elk. Bran notices that he also seems to be accompanied by a murder of ravens. They have been searching north of the Wall for days, and there is still no sign that they have gotten close to their destination, the home of the three-eyed crow. When they sense that they are being followed, Coldhands and his ravens hang behind to face their foes. Meera leads the others to a deserted wildling village. That night, Bran enters Summer's mind as the latter goes hunting. Summer finds a small pack led by a one-eyed wolf. He defeats the one-eyed wolf, the pack's leader, and together they eat the dead men of the Night's Watch that they find. Bran wakes and realizes that the men were killed by Coldhands, who has returned. Coldhands explains that he is dead and that he is a friend of the three-eyed crow, who is the last greenseer. Coldhands may be a monster, but Jojen tells the others that they have no choice but to follow him. They would never make it back to the Wall now.
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Chapter 5 Summary
Tyrion and Illyrio set out from Pentos in a carriage. They pass the time eating, drinking, and talking. Tyrion tries to figure out more about Illyrio's motivations, but learns little. Illyrio and Varys had been friends together as children in Pentos. Varys had been a thief who had soon learned that he could make more money spying on lesser thieves and selling information on their whereabouts to their victims. The selling expanded until the king of Westeros sought Varys out. He had been suspicious of his family and his Hand, who had been a childhood friend. Illyrio next explains how he knew Daenerys and Viserys when they were young. Daenerys had been a shy girl until she was reborn amongst the Dothraki. When he sent her three ships, she sailed them to Slaver's Bay and conquered three cities. Now, he hopes to send Tyrion there, where he is confident that the young queen will make use of him. First, they must reach the river and Griff, a knight from Westeros that Illyrio trusts implicitly, who will take Tyrion on the next stage of his journey. The Golden Company, meanwhile, will await Daenerys's arrival. Tyrion soon grows impatient, and he eventually finds himself wondering again about where his first love, Tysha, might have wound up.
(The entire section is 214 words.)
Chapter 6 Summary
The Merchant's Man, Quentyn Martell, wonders whether the Adventure, a fast ship but one that stinks thanks to its mysterious cargo, is the right one to take him and his friends to Meereen. There, Quentyn hopes to woo and marry Daenerys Targaryen. With Cletus Yronwood, Willem Wells, and Maester Kedry now dead, Quentyn and Gerris take turns pretending to be either the wine merchant or the wine merchant's servant. For now, Quentyn plays the servant, so he watches as Gerris negotiates. Gerris is lean and handsome, whereas Quentyn has an honest face and a thick frame. It is likely Quentyn, Prince of Dorne, rather than Quentyn himself will attract Daenerys. The captain of the Adventure agrees to smuggle them into the war torn lands around Slaver's Bay, but Quentyn and Gerris worry that he will just rob them. Then again, no other ship will agree to travel to Meereen. They leave the docks and make their way through Volantis, where they see comic dwarfs that joust each other from atop a dog and a pig. They also encounter sellswords recruiting before they go to Slaver's Bay to fight Daenerys Targaryen. Quentyn and Gerris return to their rooms, where mighty Archibald Yronwood guards their possessions with his hammer. They begin to think that they have no choice but to leave Volantis aboard the Adventure when Gerris gets an idea.
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Chapter 7 Summary
Jon hesitates to sign the letter that Maester Aemon has prepared for him. He decides to put it off and summons Gilly, whom he instructs to travel south to Oldtown with Mance Rayder's son. Her own son, however, will remain at the Wall. Gilly has nursed both children, and Jon explains that if they allow Mance's son—a king's son—to remain at the Wall, Melisandre and Stannis will burn him to use in their spells. Gilly agrees and flees crying. Jon next meets Sam, who urges Jon to sign Aemon's letter. It is a paper shield that they will send to King's Landing explaining that they do not support Stannis, though they have fed and sheltered him. Sam is to go with Gilly, Mance's son, and Maester Aemon to Oldtown to become a maester. Maester Aemon advises Jon to arm himself with knowledge before setting out to battle and to put the boy within him aside and become a man. Jon next summons Giant, the shortest member of the Watch, whom Jon commands to travel to Icemark, an abandoned fort along the Wall. Giant and his men are to restore the fort as best they can and watch for wildlings. Giant agrees. However, when Jon orders Lord Janos Slynt to travel to Greyguard and do the same, Slynt refuses. The next morning, Jon goes to the mess hall, where Slynt is eating. Jon gives him one last chance to obey, and when he refuses, Jon takes Slynt into the yard and beheads him. Jon looks up and sees Stannis, who nods at him before returning inside his tower.
(The entire section is 269 words.)
Chapter 8 Summary
Tyrion wakes and discovers that the carriage has stopped and Magister Illyrio is outside. Illyrio is talking to two men, Haldon Halfmaester and Ser Rolly Duckfield (Duck), who are transferring chests from the carriage onto packhorses. Tyrion is to join them. Illyrio introduces Tyion as Yollo, but Tyrion tells them to call him Hugor Hill. Illyrio tells them to tell the boy that he will be there for the boy's wedding, and he returns to Pentos. Tyrion journeys east with Duck and Haldon along an old road built by the Valyrians. It is a magnificent road—wide, smooth, and ancient—which one maester named one of the nine wonders of the world. Tyrion remembers how when he was young, he had hoped to see them all. Instead, his father had put Tyrion in charge of the cisterns at Casterly Rock, which Tyrion soon had running more smoothly than ever. They arrive in Ghoyan Drohe, a city in Rhoyne, where they meet with Griff, a man with red eyebrows who dyes his hair blue. He reads Illyrio's letter of introduction and is reluctant to accept Tyrion, a Lannister. However, he agrees to allow Tyrion join their party as they make their way to Daenerys. Tyrion does not find Griff, who claims to be neither a lord nor a knight, a very convincing liar; if anything, Tyrion finds Griff's attempts to play the game of thrones amusing.
(The entire section is 235 words.)
Chapter 9 Summary
Davos is brought before Lord Godric Borrell, Lord of Sweetsister. Davos was a smuggler in his youth, but his fortunes changed when he smuggled onions past siege lines to an embattled Stannis. Stannis raised Davos to knighthood for his heroics and cut off the ends of his fingers for his smuggling. Now, Davos is Stannis's Hand, and though he hopes to make it to White Harbor, where he will treat with Lord Wyman Manderly, he must first find a way off this island. When Godric offers him food, Davos is relieved since it means he is a guest rather than a prisoner. As he eats, Davos reflects that he should not have been captured, but when storms ruined Salladhor Saan's fleet, the Lysene pirate finally abandoned Stannis's cause. Now, Godric informs Davos that Lord Tywin is dead and that the Freys are treating with Lord Manderly. Davos argues that Stannis will defeat the Lannisters now that Lord Tywin is dead. Rather than agreeing or disagreeing, Godric shares how Ned Stark once stayed at the same hall during Robert's Rebellion. After, he had a fisherman take him across the Bite. A storm had killed the fisherman, but his daughter had taken Ned across. Ned left her with a son, whom she named Jon Snow. Before he was allowed to leave, Godric's family had considered giving Ned to the Mad King Aerys, who seemed like to win the war, but Stark had replied that "only winter is certain." If Robert should win, they would be rewarded. If the Targaryens should win, then no one need ever know that Ned was there. Davos agrees.
(The entire section is 271 words.)
Chapter 10 Summary
Jon watches as they bring out Mance Rayder, the King-Beyond-the-Wall, to be punished in front of the wildlings. Jon points out that Mance had the Horn of Joramun, but he never blew it. It makes no difference. Melisandre and Stannis hang Mance, who breaks and says he is not a king. Next, Melisandre burns the horn in front of the wildlings. Stannis draws Lightbringer, which blazes like the sun. The wildlings are allowed into the realm and they kneel before Stannis. Jon looks at Sigorn, the new Magnar of Thenn, Rattleshirt, and other wildlings heroes, and wonders if they will be loyal. Bowen Marsh, the Lord Steward, urges Jon to send them back to die fighting the Others. Jon agrees to think on his words before he leaves, but he wants more men to defend the Wall. He goes to the mess hall, where Pyp and Grenn are eating. However, Jon knows that he can no longer pretend to be their friend. He goes next to Clydas, who tends the ravens. He points out to Clydas that if Melisandre is right and Stannis and Azor Ahai come again to fight back the night, then his sword should radiate heat. It does not. Alone, Jon writes two letters—one to Ser Denys and one to Cottor Pyke—as he reflects that he will carry these duties and responsibilities for the rest of his life.
(The entire section is 233 words.)
Chapter 11 Summary
Daenerys is woken from a dream in which she had been making love to Daario. It is Irri who wakes her, and Skahaz, Reznak, and Grey Worm who inform her that the Sons of the Harpy have killed nine of her subjects in the night. One of the dead was Missandei's brother. Furious, Dany announces that the Unsullied will no longer patrol Meereen. She instructs Skahaz to form a new watch made up of Meereenese. Their pay shall be drawn from the pyramids, a blood tax as punishment for the work of the Sons of the Harpy. That day, Dany goes to the baths and has a vision of Quaithe, who informs her that the glass candles are burning again. She tells Dany that "soon comes the pale mare, after her the others. Kraken and dark flame, lion and griffin, the sun's son and the mummer's dragon. Trust none of them. Remember the Undying. Beware the perfumed seneschal." At the last, Dany wonders why she should fear Reznak. Quaithe disappears after telling Dany to remember who she is. She goes to court, where she is again asked to reopen the fighting pits. She leaves the court with Ser Barristan, who tells her about his escape from King's Landing. Talk turns to Ned Stark, and Ser Barristan defends him. Dany considers him guilty, and suddenly remembers her dragons. Rhaegal and Viserion are held in the pits, but Drogon still flies free. Dany wonders what sort of monster she has unleashed upon the world. If she is the mother of dragons, Dany realizes, then she is a monster too.
(The entire section is 267 words.)
Chapter 12 Summary
Reek eats a rat, knowing that the belly will be the softest part. When he hears footsteps coming into the dungeons, he worries that he will be caught and punished for eating the rat. He is not punished. Instead, Big Walder and Little Walder take Reek to the hall, where Lord Ramsay Bolton sups with two grizzled old lords. When they look at him, Reek panics. Lord Ramsay punishes those that disobey him, Reek knows. He remembers how he and Kyra tried to escape, only to learn that Lord Ramsay prefers to hunt human prey. Reek has now lost toes and fingers. Ramsay flays the skin and when the victim can no longer stand it, he begs for Ramsey to cut off the appendage. Once, Reek had tried to bite off his own finger to stop the pain, which displeased Lord Ramsay. Now, Bolton has a task for Reek. Arya Stark is being brought to him, and he wonders if Reek can remember her. Reek admits that he can still remember her. The old lords recognize Reek as Ned Stark's old ward, though they note that he no longer smiles and his hair has gone white. Bolton informs Reek that they will ride to war and to his virgin bride.
(The entire section is 210 words.)
Chapter 13 Summary
Bran and the others have to worry after Coldhands explains that they are being pursued by wights as well as wolves. He turns to face their enemies and commands Meera to lead them uphill to a cave. Hodor carries Bran and Meera carries her ailing brother, Jojen. They have not eaten anything for days. The wights begin to grab at them from beneath the snow. Bran enters Hodor's mind to fight them off, while Summer attacks the wights. Bran wonders if he should tell Meera that he loves her. They are almost overtaken when the wights catch fire. Bran looks up and thinks he sees Arya. It is a child of the forest, though she explains that in the True Tongue, they called themselves those who sing the song of earth. She takes Bran and the other deep into the ground, where they see other children. Above their heads are white weirwood roots and beneath their feet are bones. They finally come to a cavern where they meet the three-eyed crow, a greenseer. He was once a member of the Night's Watch, but his clothes are now faded and overgrown with moss. He tells Bran that he will never walk again. However, Bran can learn to fly.
(The entire section is 207 words.)
Chapter 14 Summary
Tyrion is no longer allowed to drink, and he shivers and sweats in the night because of it. Everyone aboard the ship has a job to do as they sail along the river. Duck and Young Griff spar in the morning, and in the afternoons Haldon Halfmaester and Septa Lemore instruct them. Tyrion is told to record everything he has ever learned about dragons. He wonders if they will be able to find any of the lost histories about Valyria. Tyrion has begun to embellish his original tales about Yollo, also known as Hugor. Tyrion hopes to convince the rest of the crew that his father was a Westerosi lord, and that he is a bastard. One afternoon, he sits in on Young Griff's history lessons. They discuss the history of Volantis, the first of the Nine Free Cities to expand after Valyria met its doom. The Volantene tried to conquer the world but were eventually defeated by their enemies. Now, they are a merchant state. When asked to explain what this history teaches, Young Griff concludes that one cannot conquer the world without dragons. After, Tyrion challenges Haldon to a game of cyvasse. Haldon always wins, but Tyrion suggests that they wager secrets based on the outcome of this match. After, Tyrion goes on deck and sees an enormous turtle, the Old Man of the River. Tyrion reflects that wonders always appear to attend to the birth of kings.
(The entire section is 240 words.)
Chapter 15 Summary
Davos arrives in White Harbor aboard The Merry Midwife. He reflects on Cottor Pyke's reasoning: the Manderlys and the Boltons have long been enemies. Since Roose Bolton is now Warden of the North, he is allied with Lannisters. Therefore, it stands to reason that Lord Wyman Manderly will side with Stannis. Davos is distressed when he sees Lionstar, a ship from King's Landing, at dock. He enters the city near the harbor and listens as sailors and merchants gossip. The smallfolk are fleeing the countryside to escape the Bastard of Bolton, and Manderly is hiring men, suggesting that he means to fight the Boltons. However, Manderly's remaining son is still being held hostage by the Freys, suggesting that he might be preparing to remain neutral within a fortified city. At the Lazy Eel, men discuss the return of the dragons. Davos also learns that Ramsay Bolton is leading men south to take back the Neck from the Ironborn. No one discusses Stannis or the wildling attack on the Wall. Davos wonders why he still lives. The gods have taken four of his sons, but he remains. What final job do they intend for him? Davos finally makes his way to the keep and presents himself to the guardsmen. He asks to see Lord Manderly, alone.
(The entire section is 215 words.)
Chapter 16 Summary
Daenerys attempts to convince Xaro Xhoan Daxos that he can help restart trade between Meereen with Qarth. However, he has come to bring slavery back to Meereen. He explains that slaves are made by the Dothraki and trained by the Ghiscari. Meereen has little else to trade. Further, without Meereen, the Dothraki must now drive their slaves directly to Qarth, which is inconvenient. He points out that Meereen was once rich and peaceful, but now is poor, hungry, and bloody under Dany's rule. Dany is surrounded by enemies. The Sons of the Harpy attack her within the city. Now, the sellsword companies are amassing against her, under the pay of her enemies, especially Yunkai. The warlocks also seek to destroy Daenerys. Fortunately, Xaro has brought thirteen ships to carry Dany and her army to Westeros. The next day, Dany sends men to inspect the ships and they are declared seaworthy. However, her Meereenese followers worry that they will be conquered and enslaved by the surrounding slavers, punished for supporting Dany's rule. Dany declares that Westeros must wait. When she informs Xaro that she will not go, she realizes that she has made yet another enemy. When she next holds court, a messenger brings a bloody glove upon a pillow. War has been declared.
(The entire section is 213 words.)
Chapter 17 Summary
Jon and Dolorous Edd go into the wormways, tunnels beneath Castle Black. They meet Lord Steward, Bowen Marsh, who shows Jon their frozen stores. Normally, they would have enough for three to four years of winter. However, it will not be enough. Between the wildlings and the king's men, they will run out of food by the end of the first year. They agree to start rationing the food, which Jon knows will displease the men. The meeting ends when Jon is summoned to King Stannis, whose wrong-way rangers, Ser Richard and Ser Justin, have returned with news from south of the Wall. They present Rattleshirt, who wears a red gem round his wrist like the one Melisandre wears around her throat. She declares that he will not betray the Night's Watch. Stannis announces that he means to strike at the Dreadfort while Ramsay Bolton and his army ride south to meet Roose Bolton. Jon proposes to give Stannis another target if he should leave the wildlings behind at the Wall. When Stannis agrees, Jon suggests that Stannis recruit from the clans in the western mountains and then strike at Deepwood Motte, a wooden fort still held by the ironmen. Stannis decides to take Jon's advice in order to show his strength to the northmen. Jon is satisfied that he will have a thousand wildlings to defend the Wall, though he still has no way to feed them.
(The entire section is 238 words.)
Chapter 18 Summary
Tyrion and the others continue down the Rhoyne aboard the Shy Maid. When they reach the Sorrows, they are engulfed in an unnatural fog and worry that the stone men will attack. The stone men suffer from a mortal form of greyscale. Tyrion recalls how men would sometimes cut off an arm to keep the stone from spreading, only to start to feel its tingle as the sickness starts in the other arm. They know that they have reached the Bridge of Dream when they see a series of lights in the fog above them. On it are the stone men. As the ship passes beneath it, Young Griff refuses to go belowdecks. Tyrion tells him that he should, revealing that he knows Young Griff is a prince. Tyrion reveals his identity as well: he is the son of Tywin Lannister, who was said to have killed Prince Rhaegar's children. Finally, he reveals Griff as Jon Connington, dear friend to Prince Rhaegar, once Lord of Griffin's Roost, and once the Hand of the King. As they talk back and forth, the ship is turned in the Rhoyne's currents back towards the Bridge of Dream. This time, the stone men jump down to the ship. Griff engages one and another is pushed off with a pole. The stone men appear to have lost when a third stone man jumps behind Tyrion. Tyrion uses his torch to drive the stone man off the ship, but he is dragged into the river to drown. He decides to haunt the Seven Kingdoms in the his death.
(The entire section is 262 words.)
Chapter 19 Summary
Davos is held captive by Lord Wyman Manderly, and when Ser Marlon Manderly comes to take him away, he reflects on how he was captured. Rather than being granted a private audience, Davos was taken before a court filled with old men, women, and Freys. Davos calls upon Lord Manderly to support King Stannis out of a sense of duty, but no one in the room listens. The Lannisters will return their captured relatives, while Stannis offers more death. Lady Leona, whose husband is still held by the Freys, mocks Davos and calls for his head. The Freys, meanwhile, announce that the Red Wedding was Robb Stark's work. He transformed into a wolf and killed everyone around him. When Davos calls the Freys liars, only Lord Manderly is able to stop them from drawing swords. Davos changes tactics and offers the Manderlys vengeance for their lost men, who were killed by the Lannisters. No one is inclined to listen until Wylla, a young girl, declares to the court that the Manderlys have supported the Starks for generations. The Freys announce that Arya Stark is to wed Ramsay Bolton, so Lord Manderly and Wylla can best support the Starks by supporting the Boltons and the Lannisters. Lord Manderly summons Ser Marlon and commands him to take Davos away for beheading.
(The entire section is 219 words.)
Chapter 20 Summary
Reek journeys to Moat Cailin, careful to guard his thoughts against memories of his former identity. He wears gloves so that no one will see his lost fingers. There was a time before when he had ridden south as a prince with Robb Stark and twenty thousand men. Now, he is Lord Ramsay's Reek and only two in ten of those men survived. Still, Ramsay has promised to make Reek his dog if the latter can deliver Moat Cailin. Reek approaches the decrepit towers under a banner of peace and inside confronts the remaining ironborn that guard the tower. They are dying. There are many sicknesses in the Neck, not to mention poisonous serpents and insects. Reek knows that the people of the Neck, whom he calls bog devils, are the worst of all. They strike with their poison arrows, hidden amongst the marshes. Reek convinces the ironmen to surrender to Lord Ramsay and delivers them to the northmen. Lord Roose Bolton and his army cross the Neck from the south. Roose introduces Arya Stark to Ramsay, but Reek recognizes her as Jeyne Poole. She does not have Stark eyes. Reek keeps this information to himself as he sleeps with Ramsay's dogs, a reward for his service.
(The entire section is 207 words.)
Chapter 21 Summary
Jon reflects on all of the men the Night's Watch has lost as he leads his men south from the Wall to Mole's Town, where the wildlings live crammed in tunnels beneath the village. Jon notices that they have begun to carve faces into the trees around the village; they have brought their old gods with them. They come out for food and are allowed to pick either an apple or an onion. When they complain that they are not fed as well as the men of the Night's Watch, Jon replies that the men of the Night's Watch are fighting the Others and guarding the Wall. He proposes that the wildlings make a new choice. He offers to take any wildling into his service, boy or girl, that is twelve or older and knows how to use a spear. At first, the wildlings hesitate. However, when a girl and some boys join, a flood of others join. None of the Thenns join. By the time Jon leaves the village, he counts sixty three new spears to guard the Wall. Bowen Marsh, the Lord Steward, is less pleased. He sees sixty three new mouths to feed and worries that the women will cause trouble among the men. Worse, who will they fight for if Tormund Giantsbane attacks the Wall?
(The entire section is 219 words.)
Chapter 22 Summary
Tyrion wakes up aboard the Shy Maid again; the others inform him that Lemore revived him. They worry that Tyrion might have greyscale and they advise him to prick his toes and fingers regularly with a knife. If it ever stops hurting, he should cut off that appendage. Tyrion returns to life aboard the ship, though the others remain careful around him. He challenges Young Griff, now revealed as Prince Aegon, to a game of cyvasse. Aegon plans to journey to Daenerys and marry her. Tyrion suggests that the prince's plans might not work out as he plans if he arrives as a beggar with a small army. Instead, Aegon should trust no one—certainly not Illyrio and his schemes. He should journey to Westeros and raise a bold banner of rebellion that will bring Daenerys to him. Also, Westeros has never been weaker than it is now with winter coming and with Cersei destroying every alliance her father made. After, Haldon and Tyrion go into Selhorys to get information. While there, they learn that more countries are preparing to attack Daenerys in Meereen to end her assault on the slave trade. On the way back to the ship, Tyrion stops at a whorehouse. He is drunk by the time he is to leave but is stopped by a knight, who recognizes Tyrion. The knight takes Tyrion and announces that they will journey to the queen together.
(The entire section is 237 words.)
Chapter 23 Summary
Daenerys sups with Galazza Galare, an old woman with wise eyes. She is happy to see that Dany has not killed any of the noble children that she holds hostage. The Sons of the Harpy do continue to kill Dany's men, but she cannot bring herself to murder children. Galazza Galare suggests that Dany marry Hizdahr zo Loraq and give birth to a son to consolidate her rule. Dany, however, knows that she will never give birth to another child. Still, she summons Hizdahr zo Loraq and agrees to marry him if he can give Meereen ninety days of peace. Before he goes, Dany asks him to kiss her, but she is not moved by the kiss. When he leaves, she talks with Ser Barristan, who disapproves of Dany's plan. He urges her to go to Westeros, but Dany remains intent on healing Meereen. Barristan tells her that Daario Noharis and his Stormcrows have returned. She summons him at once, as well as her maids. Dany makes herself as beautiful as possible and though she is excited to see Daario again, she is disturbed by his advice. The sellsword suggests that she draw the Great Masters out from their pyramids to attend her wedding. Then, she should assassinate them. Dany refuses to become a butcher queen and sends Daario away. She tells Barristan to send the Stormcrows back into the field. However, as she considers her wild dragons, she wonders if she might not be more similar to Daario than she would prefer.
(The entire section is 253 words.)
Chapter 24 Summary
The Lost Lord, Jon Connington, prepares to return to the Golden Company. He served with them for years after his exile and rose high in their ranks before leaving to carry out Illyio and Varys's scheme to train Prince Aegon in secrecy. When he left, Myles Toyne had led the mercenaries. Now, his friend is dead and Harry Strickland runs the company. Though Lemore cautions him, Connington is tired of waiting. He reflects that he has waited seventeen years to avenge his loss at the Battle of the Bells. If he would have defeated Robert Baratheon that day, his silver prince, Rhaegar, would still live. When they present themselves before the captains of the Golden Company, Strickland is reluctant to follow through on the plan. Daenerys was supposed to journey west. Now, she is trapped in Meereen, surrounded by enemies, and the only way the company can reach her is by the demon road. Aegon proposes that they journey to Westeros, win victories, and gather allies to their cause. Though Strickland is reluctant to agree, the other captains are ready to return to Westeros. As Connington prepares for sleep that night, he takes off his gloves. The fingers have already begun to turn black and he can no longer feel pain when he pricks them. He reminds himself that some men live with greyscale for years before they die. It should be time enough to return to Griffin's Roost and to end the line of Robert Baratheon.
(The entire section is 247 words.)
Chapter 25 Summary
The Windblown is a mercenary company, and now Quentyn Martell is one of them. The Windblown have marched for thirty years since they were founded by the Tattered Prince. Quentyn now serves as a squire to Arch, and he goes by the name Frog. So far, their plan to reach Daenerys Targaryen seems to be working. They are closer to her than ever, but they are fighting for the slavers, who have just conquered Astapor. Quentyn recalls the battle, in which he and the others rode over green boys armed with spears. Cleon's corpse was tied to a horse in the final battle before the liberated city was defeated. Now, Quentyn wonders when they should defect. Arch and Drink agree that they should wait until they are closer to Meereen before they defect. If they are caught, the Tattered Prince will give them to Pretty Meris, a merciless woman from the Seven Kingdoms. However, Quentyn worries that Arch especially is growing too fond of his brothers in arms. He also worries over Daenerys Targaryen, who sounds like a monster if what the slavers are saying about her is true. Quentyn is freed from having to make the decision when he is summoned to a meeting led by the Tattered Prince. All of the Westerosi members of their company are there. The Tattered Prince explains that they are to ride into the hills, drive any survivors from Astapor towards Dany's troops. Eventually, they are to defect. No matter who wins the coming battle, the Windblown will be rewarded.
(The entire section is 257 words.)
Chapter 26 Summary
The wayward bride, Asha Greyjoy, drinks wine in Galbart Glover's longhall when a maester brings her a letter. It is from Ramsay Bolton, who names himself a lord and the Warden of the North. The letter contains a strip of Theon's skin and a warning that all of the ironborn must leave the north. Asha's men would like to march south to fight the skinners, but Asha knows that they only seek a good death. Asha does not like Deepwood Motte and its forests, but she cannot return to the sea. Euron is chasing dragons, but he has declared Erik Ironmaker, the Anvil-Breaker, her husband, and he rules over the Iron Isles now. If Asha should appear, she will be expected to submit to him. She considers joining Stannis, but she is reluctant to form an alliance with a man that has so many enemies. When Tris Botley suggests that they go away together to become pirates or traders journeying to the Jade Sea, Asha reminds him that she is sleeping with Qarl the Maid and is considering claiming Sea Dragon Point to form her own kingdom. Tris tells her that she will have to live with the decision of the kingsmoot. During the Age of Heroes, Torgon Greyiron had challenged the results of a kingsmoot since he was the oldest son but not present, but Asha was there. When she hears this, Asha kisses Tris. That night, a northman is caught in the castle. They attack the north gate as Asha leads her men out the south gate to the shore. They encounter the northerners instead and fight a bloody battle. As Asha is sure that she is about to die, she hears trumpets and dreams of a black stag with flame around its antlers.
(The entire section is 296 words.)
Chapter 27 Summary
Tyrion tests the knight's limits, though he knows that if he goes too far with his comments and jokes that he will get another fat lip. They arrive in Volantis in the middle of the triarch elections. There are slaves everywhere, and the knight has Tyrion bound in shackles so that no one will listen to what he says. Tyrion is struck by the size of temple for R'hllor, the Lord of Light. The high priest, Benerro, is calling for his followers to support Daenerys Targaryen, their reborn savior, against the forces of darkness. Tyrion worries for Aegon, since the priest does not call for more than one savior. They take shelter that night and Tyrion announces that he knows the knight, Ser Jorah Mormont, and he attempts to convince him not to deliver Tyrion into Cersei's hands. The next day, Jorah takes Tyrion to Vogarro's whore, a power in the city. Along the way, Tyrion sees another dwarf, who recognizes him. He follows them. When Ser Jorah asks Vogarro's whore to arrange passage for them to reach Meereen, Tyrion is shocked that he is not being taken to Cersei. The woman refuses and the dwarf, a girl, attacks Tyrion. Her name is Penny and she explains that men killed her brother, Ollo, hoping to deliver him to Cersei. Tyrion recognizes her as one of the two dwarfs that jousted on a pig and a dog during Joffrey's wedding. Vogarro's whore suggest that they board Selaesori Qhoran, which is bound for Qarth, in two days. Although it is bound for Qarth, Benerro has seen in his fires that the cog will not arrive. Before they leave, Vogarro's whore tells them to deliver a message to Daenerys: the slaves are waiting for her to come to Volantis.
(The entire section is 296 words.)
Chapter 28 Summary
Jon sends Ser Alliser Thorne north of the Wall on a ranging, though the latter believes it a death sentence. Dywen will lead Ser Alliser's ranging, and Jon is sending Black Jack Bulwer and Kedge Whiteye on another two rangings. Cotter Pyke has spotted wildlings building ships along the shore and Ser Denys Mallister has reported fires north of the Gorge. Both asked for more men, so Jon had sent them wildling recruits, which pleased neither. He wonders where he can get more recruits and goes into the yard, looking for a fight. Jon defeats Iron Emmett's three most promising recruits. Rattleshirt challenges Jon next. The Lord of Bones wields a two handed sword with speed and power and ultimately defeats Jon. Afterward, Clydas brings Jon a letter from Ramsay Bolton announcing his plans to marry Arya Stark, which infuriates the Lord Commander. He goes out that night with Ghost at his heels, wondering what to do. He turns and finds Ygritte, though when he talks to her it turns out to be Melisandre. Jon wonders how he could have failed to notice the difference. Melisandre tells Jon that his sister will be okay. The rangers that he sent beyond the Wall, however, will not fare so well. Three of them will die. When the news reaches Jon, he will have learned to trust her, though he should have all along, explains the Red Priestess.
(The entire section is 235 words.)
Chapter 29 Summary
Davos is imprisoned in the Wolf's Den, tended by Garth, who brings porridge "for the dead man" every day. Although Garth mocks Davos over his coming death, Davos is otherwise treated well. He composes letters to his wife and sons, though he realizes that he does not know his youngest three sons as well as he knew his oldest four sons. When someone does come for him, Davos is not taken to his death. It is Robett Glover, who explains that a lot has happened since Davos was imprisoned. Stannis has taken Deepwood Motte, the Glovers' fort. Lord Manderly's son has been returned to him from the Freys. And, most importantly, Davos is dead. They tarred a criminal's head and cut off his fingers to fool the Freys and the Lannisters. Now, they enter a secret passage, in which Davos is taken to Lord Manderly. He apologizes for his discourteous treatment and explains that he had to make a show of befriending the Freys and the Lannisters in order to regain his son. Now that his son is returned, however, Lord Manderly means to fight back. He will go to Winterfell to witness the marriage between Arya Stark and Ramsay Bolton. However, Manderly has more ships, more mounted strength, and more coin than anyone else in the north. He also has Wex, a child that was in Winterfell when Theon Greyjoy and Ramsay Bolton were there. Wex claims that Ned Stark's sons still live. Now, Manderly and Glover demand that Davos smuggle them to the Stark sons.
(The entire section is 257 words.)
Chapter 30 Summary
Daenerys counts the ships in the harbor that cut off trade to Meereen. She turns to her admiral and asks his advice, but he insists that there is nothing he can do. Dany turns to Ser Barristan, who tells her she has ample stores and the friendship of Lhazar, though they are not fighters. She next sees Skahaz and two of his Brazen Beasts, men that wear masks of animals. He reports on Hizdahr's movements. Each night, Hizdahr goes to a different pyramid, and Skahaz thinks he may be the Harpy that leads the rebellion against Dany's rule. Dany refuses to have him arrested and insists upon peace. Word has reached the city that Astapor has fallen. A man riding a pale mare brings the news as well as evidence that the bloody flux is making its way through the population of survivors. Worse, Dany's enemies have three sellsword companies, while Dany has two. Dany summons her captains. Brown Ben Plumm of the Second Sons assures Dany that her dragons will lead them to victory. When Dany refuses to deploy them, Brown Ben instead suggests that they try to buy one of the attacking companies. Dany agrees to set up a camp for the survivors until the bloody flux has passed. She finally turns to Ser Barristan, who tells Dany that her only hope is battle. It will mean taking her strength out of Meereen, which will leave her vulnerable to an attack by the Sons of the Harpy. Without any other options or guidance, Dany decides to summon Hizdahr zo Loraq.
(The entire section is 262 words.)
Chapter 31 Summary
Melisandre makes sure that there is always a fire burning in her chambers to keep the terrors of the night at bay. She looks into her hearthfire for visions, but does not find any about Arya Stark. There is also nothing about Stannis, Azor Ahai reborn. She sees winged shapes, waves crashing on towers, and a white face with red eyes. She remembers the sound of a woman crying "Melony" and another voice saying "Lot Seven." When morning comes, she has Devan fetch her breakfast. She checks the sleeves of her dress. She is nearly out of the powders that she uses to manipulate fire, but fortunately her spells are more powerful at the Wall than they ever were in Asshai. She meets with Rattleshirt and asks him to consider journeying south in search of Arya Stark. Their conversation ends when a horn blows once. She knows that it will be news that three of the rangers have been killed, which means that Jon Snow will finally begin to trust in her counsel. She goes out to see them with Jon Snow and others. As she hoped, Jon walks with her afterward, though she finds it difficult to answer his questions. She does her best not to give away her uncertainty. She takes him to meet with Rattleshirt and shares her plan with the Lord Commander. Snow refuses to trust Rattleshirt, so she reveals that he is actually Mance Rayder disguised by a glamor. She tells him that Mance is a gift from the Lord of Light, and from her.
(The entire section is 260 words.)
Chapter 32 Summary
Reek hears the dogs barking before he sees Lord Ramsay return. The dogs are named after women that Lord Ramsay has raped, and now Reek spends his days with them. Little Walder and Big Walder are with him, and Reek notices that Little Walder is becoming more and more like Lord Ramsay while Big Walder seldom takes part in Lord Ramsay's cruelties. There is a feast that night until Roose Bolton enters and dismisses everyone but Lord Ramsay and Reek. Roose and his son discuss their plans. The Freys that were with Lord Manderly have disappeared, and Lord Manderly has not brought a hostage for the Boltons. In spite of Arnolf Karstark's best efforts, Stannis has not marched on the Dreadfort. Instead, he grows stronger. Lord Ramsay would attack their enemies immediately, but Roose is more cautious. He reminds Ramsay that one of Stark's sons could undermine everything, to which Lord Ramsay replies that he will kill them again. Roose reminds him that it was Theon Turncloak that killed the boys and raised Winterfell. He commands Lord Ramsay to marry Arya Stark at Winterfell and he leaves with Reek. During the journey, Roose explains how he raped Ramsay's mother and how she raised him along with the first Reek. Ramsay killed Roose's first trueborn son and will likely kill any others he has with his new wife. They journey to Lady Barbrey. When they arrive, Roose introduces Reek to her as Theon of House Greyjoy, rightful Lord of the Iron Islands.
(The entire section is 251 words.)
Chapter 33 Summary
Tyrion watches as Moqorro leads the sailers in their prayers to R'hllor aboard the Selaesori Qhoran. Tyrion has no use for gods, but he does talk to the priest, who is charged with bringing his faith to Daenerys. Tyrion wonders what to do with Penny. She continues blames him for the death of her brother, but Tyrion refuses to take responsibility. He has his own sins to answer for. She eventually accepts what he says and they begin to form a relationship. She tells him that she and her brother were not hired by Cersei, but rather by one of the Kettleblacks. She also asks him to tilt with her on Pretty, a pig. Tyrion refuses. The ship sails close to where Valyria met its doom. Tyrion looks at the Smoking Sea and he can see the fires of the Fourteen Flames reflected off the clouds. Tyrion reflects that the Valyrians built their empire on blood and fire, and they were destroyed by it. Normally, a ship would not venture close to Valyria, but Moqorro explains that others are going to Daenerys as well. Tyrion asks if Moqorro has seen any of them in his fires and the priest admits that he has seen their shadows, first among them the shadow of a one eyed, twisted thing with ten long arms. It sails on a sea of blood.
(The entire section is 228 words.)
Chapter 34 Summary
Bran sits on a weirwood throne under a hill while the Others shuffle above ground. He and Meera have begun naming the Children of the Forest. His guide, Leaf, explains that the Children had their time during the dawn of days, but now they are declining along with the giants, the unicorns, and the great lions. Eventually, even the direwolves will pass. The greenseer, who was once named Brynden, teaches Bran to become a skinchanger. When Bran flies within a raven, he feels the presence of another. The greenseer explains that it is a shadow of a singer's soul. Long ago, ravens carried messages that they were able to speak to First Men. Meera and Jojen explore the caves, and sometimes Bran secretly follows them inside of Hodor's mind. They are warm again, but Jojen broods on his death, which he has foreseen in one of his greendreams. Bran wishes that he could comfort Meera, but he does not know how to. Later, Bran is taught to become a greenseer by entering the weirwood. He eats a paste of weirwood seeds, sends his mind into the tree's roots, and suddenly he can see the past through the deep memories of the trees. He sees his father and his ancestors from the godswood in Winterfell. Though he sees them, he cannot speak to them. He sees a woman from centuries ago kill a captive with a sickle, and when his blood touches the weirwood's roots, Bran can taste it.
(The entire section is 248 words.)
Chapter 35 Summary
Jon takes his men north of the Wall to the weirwood grove, though Bowen March disagrees with his decision. Jon explains that if the new recruits—two of whom are wildlings—wish to swear their vows before the old gods, then they shall. It is tradition. The snows are deep now, and Jon wishes that they had a glass garden in which they could grow vegetables. Sadly, the Wall has no gold to buy glass. Along the way to the grove, he tells Iron Emmett and Dolorous Edd that they are to be given command of a fort along the Wall otherwise guarded only by wildling spearwives. When Jon and the others arrive at the grove, they find a group of wildlings and a giant sleeping there. At first, it looks like they will fight until Leathers talks to and calms the giant. They agree to come south of the Wall, though they worry that Melisandre will burn them. The recruits swear their vows, and Jon asks the old gods for strength to do what is necessary. Two of the wildlings are dead, but rather than burning them, Jon has the bodies brought back to the Wall and he orders them put into the ice cells. When Jon returns, he receives a letter from Stannis. He has taken Deepwood Motte and is now marching on Winterfell to fight the Boltons. As a member of the Night's Watch, Jon should be beyond dreams of glory, but he nevertheless feels the urge to lead men and to save his sister.
(The entire section is 258 words.)
Chapter 36 Summary
Daenerys goes outside the city walls to tend to the Astapori that are dying of the flux. The dead are piling high, and it is getting harder and harder to convince drivers to take food out to them. The dying Astapori demand blessings and food from their mother. Though she feels bad for them, there is little that she can do except feed them and start a funeral pyre. Fortunately, the Targaryens do not suffer from disease as others do. She returns to her chambers and bathes. After, she sups with the Galazza Galare, who tells her all of the preparation Dany will have to make to marry Hizdahr. Dany refuses to have her womb inspected by Hizdahr's family, but she agrees to wear a white tokar. Galazza Galare and Reznak insist that if Dany does not follow tradition, the Ghiscari will not accept her marriage. Hizdahr, however, does not care for the traditions and encourages Dany to ignore them. Their meeting ends when Daario returns, wounded. He brings word of approaching armies. Though some Westerosi have left the Windblown for the Stormcrows, the Second Sons have betrayed them. Dany orders the wall's shut; the sick Astapori shall stay outside. She recalls the warlocks' prophecy that she will be betrayed three times. She tells Daario, who replies that he will never betray her. Dany believes him and tells him that she has always wanted him as she kisses him.
(The entire section is 239 words.)
Chapter 37 Summary
The Prince of Winterfell, Theon Greyjoy, escorts brown eyed Jeyne Poole to her wedding. She tells Theon to take her away and she will be whatever he wants her to be. Theon refuses. The lords of the north have come to Winterfell to see Arya Stark wed Ramsay Bolton. When the wedding finishes, Ramsay is the Prince of Winterfell. Theon walks around the ruined castle. He remembers when he was the prince of Winterfell, though now men only remember him as Theon Turncloak. Abel, who claims to be a bard, plays and sings for the guests. Theon remembers that he arrived with six women. During the feast, Theon sits with Lady Dustin, who tells Theon that Roose Bolton only sees men as playthings. She predicts that Roose will defeat Stannis and Lord Manderly with ease, though Theon is not as sure. When she spots three maesters, she refers to them as gray rats that slowly come to rule their lords, and she thinks they arranged Ned Stark's marriage to Catelyn Tully. The feast ends when word arrives that Stannis is marching on Winterfell. Roose and the other men leave the feast, but Ramsay summons Theon to attend to him and his bride. Alone, Ramsay gives Theon a dagger and orders him cut off Lady Arya's clothes. Theon considers attacking Reek, but does not. When she is naked, Ramsay commands him to perform oral sex on her so that Ramsay can consummate the marriage. Theon sheathes his dagger and Reek obeys.
(The entire section is 250 words.)
Chapter 38 Summary
The Watcher, Areo Hotah, remembers his task: Serve. Protect. Obey. Prince Doran, Princess Arianne, Ellaria Sand, and the Sand Snakes watch as Maester Caleotte reveals the skull of Ser Gregor Clegane, the murderer of Princess Elia and her babes. While everyone else examines the skull, Areo studies Ser Balon Swann of the Kingsguard. He looks more dangerous than Ser Arys had been, nor does he appear tempted by Arianne. Prince Doran discusses sending Princess Myrcella, Cersei's daughter, and Prince Trystane, Doran's son, to King's Landing, though both wait at the Water Gardens. Prince Doran retreats with his family, and he decides to tell the Sand Snakes some of his plans. First, he tells them that he has heard that Cersei intends to assassinate Trystane during their journey to King's Landing. When the Sand Snakes swear to obey Doran, he gives them their orders. They will blame Ser Gerold Dayne, the Darkstar, for the death of Ser Arys Oakheart. Obara will take Ser Balon Swann after the Darkstar. Lady Nymeria will go to King's Landing to take her seat on the small council. Tyene, meanwhile, will try to get close to the new High Septon. Alone, Doran reflects to his guard that Oberyn is the only man Dorne has lost so far in the war, and he wonders whether it is to his glory or his shame. Hotah does not share his opinion. His is only to: Serve. Protect. Obey.
(The entire section is 239 words.)
Chapter 39 Summary
Jon sends Val beyond the Wall. She promises to return, though Jon worries that she will die in her mission. His other rangers have still not returned, however, and so Jon sends Val, a wildling, to find Tormund Giantsbane with an offer to move his people south of the Wall. Sending Val is risky because Stannis commanded him to keep the "wildling princess" close. It also alarms some of his men. When Jon finishes eating supper, Lord Steward Bowen Marsh, Septon Cellador, and First Builder Othell Yarwyck come to voice their concerns. Jon is sending Iron Emmett away, but he has put Leathers, a wildling, in charge of training new recruits. Jon explains that Leathers has sworn his vows and that he is a very dangerous opponent. They also object to Jon taking Satin, the son of a whore, as his squire, rather than a knight or a nobleman's son. Jon is keeping dead men beneath the Wall in hopes of studying the Others, but they again object to his strategy of learning more about the enemy. They are most concerned about Jon's intention to bring the wildlings, their enemy, south of the Wall. Jon explains that the wildlings have followed Mother Mole to Hardhome, a cursed and unholy place by all accounts. However, Mother Mole claims to have had a vision that the wildlings will find their salvation there. Jon does not believe in Mother Mole's vision, but he explains to the men that when the wildlings die, they will turn into wights and Others. The wildlings are not their enemy; the dead are. The men leave, dismissed from Jon's presence.
(The entire section is 272 words.)
Chapter 40 Summary
Tyrion has somehow agreed to ride Pretty in a tilt against Penny. The crew of the Selaesori Qhoran has grown restless, waiting for a wind. Men that once rubbed Tyrion's head for luck now blame him for their misfortune, so Tyrion agrees to do what he can to make them happy. Tyrion loses the joust, though Penny hopes it will be the first of many. Perhaps they will joust in front of Queen Daenerys. When Ser Jorah suggests that Tyrion will not be able to joust in front of Daenerys because she will judge him justly, Tyrion suggests that she might not do as Ser Jorah expects. Tyrion did not kill any member of her family, whereas Ser Jorah spied on her for years. Ser Jorah punches Tyrion, breaking one of his teeth, and tells him that they no longer will share a cabin. A storm is spotted and Tyrion remembers the prophecy that the cog would never reach its destination. During the storm, Penny kisses Tyrion, but he does not allow it to go any further, explaining that he is married to Sansa Stark. After, Moqorro is gone, the captain dies, and the slaves begin to desert the ship. Penny spots another sail in the distance, thinking that they are saved, but Ser Jorah announces that they are slavers.
(The entire section is 220 words.)
Chapter 41 Summary
The Turncloak, Theon Greyjoy, eats alone in Winterfell's hall. Arya Stark weeps in her tower while the men eat. The hall is the only place the men have since the winter snows have begun to fall. Stannis, they know, is out there in the snow, slowly marching to Winterfell, which, though burnt, is still a powerful castle surrounded by two walls. Rowan, one of the women that accompanies Abel, approaches Theon and tells him that it was clever of him to take Wintefell. She asks if he had a secret entrance, but Theon refuses to tell her how he took the castle. As he walks around, he wonders how he could escape, but dismisses the thought. Lady Dustin takes Theon from the hall and tells him to show her the crypt beneath the castle where the Starks are buried. Theon takes her. During their walk, she tells him that Arya Stark's weeping is a greater threat to the Boltons than Stannis. The northmen still love Ned Stark, though they do fear Roose Bolton. Inside the crypt, she asks Theon why he loved the Starks, and Theon eventually confesses that he wanted to be one of them. Lady Dustin understands. She tells Theon that she lost her maidenhead to Brandon Stark and had hoped to marry him. When he died, her father had hoped to marry her to Ned. However, Catelyn Tully took Ned as well as Brandon. She tells Theon that she is watching for Ned's bones, which are making their way north to Winterfell. She intends to capture them and feed them to her dogs.
(The entire section is 266 words.)