A Clash of Kings: A Song of Ice and Fire (Book 2) Chapter 40 Summary

George R. R. Martin

Chapter 40 Summary

Daenerys is leaving the Hall of a Thousand Thrones with Xaro Xhoan Daxos, but she is not happy. At the Hall, the Pureborn listened to Dany's plea for help but they nevertheless denied her, even after all of her bribes. As they travel back to Xaro's manse, he professes his love for her, though Dany sees no passion in the merchant's eyes. The litter stops in the street and Dany exits to watch a firemage at work. In the crowd, cutpurses rob the watchers while the mage walks up a ladder of fire. Quaithe tells Dany that the mage could not do such magic a year before. Now that the dragons have returned, magic has too. Dany must leave or else Qarth will force her to stay. When asked for her counsel, Quaithe declares that "to go north, you must journey south. To reach the west, you must go east. To go forward you must go back, and to touch the light you must pass beneath the shadow." Dany realizes that Quaithe is telling her to go to Asshai. When she returns to the manse, Ser Jorah arrives to give her counsel. He tells her that Xaro only asks Dany to marry him because the Qartheen have a custom in which the bride and groom can ask of each other a gift, and that request cannot be denied. Although he does not want to go to Asshai, he does believe that Dany must continue east or else she will die: she must leave Qarth or else she will not be allowed to leave. Further, if she stays and word of her dragons reaches Westeros, assassins will be sent to kill her. Dany recalls that the comet brought her to Qarth for a reason and decides that if the Pureborn will not give her an army, she must seek wisdom from the warlock Pyatt Pree.