Featured Game of Thrones George R. R. Martin Jon Snow Melisandre Speculation

The Return of Magic and How it Plays into Jon Snow’s Possible Resurrection

WARNING: SPOILERS FOR THE SONG OF ICE AND FIRE BOOKS AHEAD

In a recent post, we featured a video that compiled together some Game of Thrones scenes that hinted at Jon Snow’s true parentage.  Now, the same person who made that video has made a new one that splices together scenes about the return of magic to the world following the birth of Dany’s dragons, and hints at how it could play into Jon’s fate.

The video begins with Maester Luwin’s speech to Bran in Season 1. “Maybe magic once was a mighty force in the world but not anymore. The dragons are gone. The giants are dead. The children of the forest are gone.” In later seasons we discover that the giants and the children of the forest are alive and well. But the birth of Dany’s dragons seems to be the main catalyst for powerful magic bursting back onto the scene. So how does the return of magic play into Jon’s possible resurrection?

Since the dragons hatched, we know of at least two people resurrected with the help of magic and the Lord of Light: Beric Dondarrion and (in the books) Catelyn Stark. On the show, Melisandre learned about the possibility of resurrection courtesy of Thoros of Myr, who’s brought Beric back six times. It’s also important to note that when Beric was resurrected the first time, Thoros’ faith was at an all time low. When Melisandre returned to the Wall at the end of Season 5, the look on her face spelled disillusion. Even though her faith is at a low point by the end of Season 5, in A Dance with Dragons she realizes that her magic is more powerful at the Wall. Between the dragons, the Wall, Melisandre, and Jon’s probable parents, his rebirth is likely to provide a fair amount of fireworks.

There’s another point of speculation regarding Jon’s resurrection that I’m curious about. Will the adage hold true that only death may pay for life? But whose death? Ser Alliser Thorne? Olly? Melisandre? She seems an unlikely candidate since she claims to have seen herself at Winterfell while the Bolton banners fall. Shireen Baratheon’s fate has already been sealed on the show, but in The Winds of Winter will her death pay for Jon’s life?

On the Inside the Episode feature following Shireen’s death in “The Dance of Dragons,” show runner David Benioff said, “When George first told us about this, it was one of those moments where I looked at Dan and was just like it’s so horrible but so good in a story sense.” So why kill her off earlier than in the books?

Stannis and Shireen

 

We know that the show has made many adjustments to streamline certain plotlines. They’ve also tweaked several scenes from the books that may not play as well to a TV audience. For example, in the show, Sansa never told Cersei about Ned’s plans to leave Kings Landing, Jaime and Tyrion’s last words to each other following Tywin’s death were warm and fuzzy, and Dany didn’t tame Drogon with a whip in Daznak’s Pit.

While Stannis allowing his daughter to be sacrificed was pretty gut-wrenching, he’ll never be a hero of the story. Jon Snow is. In the books, if Shireen’s death allows Jon to live, would his resurrection somehow be sullied for the audience? I’d say possibly. Is it a bittersweet, George R. R. Martin-esque twist? Definitely.

Maybe Olly was created for the show to not only serve as Ygritte and Jon’s executioner, but also to be sacrificed in Shireen’s place at Jon’s resurrection? Given Olly’s track record I’d doubt anyone would miss him. Alternatively, it’s possible that Shireen’s fate in the books is completely unrelated to Jon and it made sense to wrap her story at the end of Season 5. Either way, it’s always fun to speculate.

70 Comments

  • My theory with sacrifices to the Red God, specifically in cases were Mel says she needs “king’s blood”, is that it has to be someone with Targaryen heritage. “Kings blood” is good shorthand for this, since pretty much anyone with royal lineage has Targ lineage too (eg the Baratheons have a Targ grandmother or great grandmother, something like that I don’t feel like googling right now :P) That makes sense to be because of the Targ’s connection to magic, that their blood would be special.

    On that note, I doubt Olly qualifies, unless the “only death can pay for life” exchange doesn’t require special blood, just any-ol-blood.

    • Thoros did not sacrifice anyone and he raised someone, how does that square with your theory?

    • King’s blood is only needed for special events I think, like waking a dragon from stone. Other than that you can make life sacrifices for things you want like good weather, successful sailing etc.

      • Well dany uses the blood of Mirri Maz Duur to wake her dragon eggs (turned to stone by this point) i think the whole point is any life will do but people are preoccupied with the idea of kings blood or at least Mel is.

  • The only authority we have that ‘Only death can pay for life’ is Mirri Maz Duur, who had every reason to lie to Dany. I don’t understand why people pounce on this statement as George’s canon. Thoros didn’t have to kill anyone to rez Beric.

    • In the show Jagen says to Arya: “only death can pay for life” or something along those lines. It’s in the video found within this article.

      • and how many people has Jaqen H’gar resurrected???
        What he meant, as I explained below, is that Arya had saved him, Rorge and Biter from certain death therefore she had ‘robbed’ the god of death of three lives therefore three other people had to die…Not that three people were raised from the dead at the expense of three others

        • Either way, saving or resurrecting, your stealing a life from death. Which must be repaid, but then as others have stated Berrics resurrection didn’t need a sacrifice. My theory on that is as Berric said each time he came back he was less and less. Maybe because there wasn’t a sacrifice the god is collecting his soul.

          Who knows, I’m not an expert on sacrifice and resurrection by any means. It just seemed to make sense there is some sort of price.

    • What about the saying of the faceless man to Arya after see wrongfully takes a life? Although, he uses this saying in a different context.

  • There is one example of a death paying for a life in the show, namely, when the witch keeps Drogo alive using blood magic. Dany’s baby is the life that is sacrificed (was it the horse?) and Drogo is no more than Catatonic afterwards.
    Not a very effective ‘resurrection’, if you ask me.
    I don’t think Jon coming back like that would serve any purpose at all.
    LSH had been dead for some time before Dondarrion gave her the kiss of life and effectively transferred his life to her. She became a mindless vengeance machine nothing like her former self. I seriously doubt George would have the same result occur with Jon.
    The only resurrection in the books that leaves the person pretty much the way he was before was Thoros praying over Dondarrion and even that takes a little out of the person and I would speculate that that is proportional to how long you are dead based on LSH.
    For Jon to come back as a reasonable facsimile of what we have had of him already, Mel is gonna have to pray over him fairly quickly or the show is gonna have to have him warg into another creature and then come up with a convoluted reason for the NW NOT to burn his body right away as they ALWAYS do. The latter just sounds cheesy and little D & D has done has been cheesy (OK, Dorne was cheesy).
    EDIT: There are other examples of Death paying for life but not in the sense of bringing someone back from the dead…Jaqen kills for Arya because she robbed the god of death when she saved him, Rorge and biter.

    • How close is Bran to the Wall? Is there a consensus as to Hodor’s fate in the story? We know he can warg into the big guy, but if he has honed his craft since we last saw him perhaps he can do more through Hodor and be warged for longer periods of time. I don’t know what this has to do with a rez…just thinking out loud because I have a feeling the brother has something to do with the coming event.

    • I wouldn’t say LSH is mindless, considering she remembers the Freys and what they did, she remembers Brienne and she remembers Robb’s crown which she looks over in a contemplative manner. I think the main reason she is how she is is because, as you said, she lay dead in the river for a few days rotting Away and her throat was cut so deep that it’s near impossible for her to speak. Beric has been resurrected 6x and admits each time takes a toll on him but it does not seem like he’s void of anything other than being a little weaker each time.

      As for Jon, I don’t see him coming back as anything other than the Jon we all know . The only change I can foresee (possibly) occurring would be Jon coming back a little harder.

    • @a57se

      One angle for not burning Jon is his murder. We don’t know exactly how Alliser plans to spin this, he may say that Wildlings killed him or that he dissappeared. Chances are there’s going to be a slight civil war amongst the Watch unless he blames the Wildlings, they’ll deny it and his body will become evidence of sorts.

      • 57,
        I think The sacrifice of Danny’s baby is the main reason the dragons hatch. When she also sacrificed Murri the witch hoe, it was sorta the same as Murri sacrificing the horse. Just an added bonus for good measure

      • I think Thorne will play this straight. He betrayed the watch and must pay. End of Story up front anyway. The watch is in no position to take on the Free Folk so he might secretly send a raven to the Warden of the North for help to deal with them, resulting in Ramsey heading to Castle Black and a big surprise.

      • Or perhaps, Thorne and his conspirators decide to hide Jon’s body from the Wildlings and place him in the ice cells. This would preserve his body as well as tie into Bran’s earlier dream, “Finally he looked north. He saw the Wall shining like blue crystal, and his bastard brother Jon sleeping alone in a cold bed, his skin growing pale and hard as the memory of all warmth flef from him.” That sounds like the ice cells to me, and I’ve never quite understood why folks believe his resurrection will mirror Dany’s fire.

  • Maybe the skin changing thing makes a difference. Ok so the Varamyr chapter: The longer the soul is in the beast (wolf) the more wolf and less man it becomes. But then there’s this true death / second life distinction which I can’t quite get clear in my head.

    Btw Lexi, I really like your thinking on how the show makes characters more sympa for the audience. Interesting that Et tu Olly was also the one to take down ygrette.

    • I always took it as your “true death” was the death that happens after you’ve lived your second life as the beast yo took on your human death bed. Get it?…

  • Maybe the burn Jon’s body or perform the resurrection ceremony in the same fire pit that they recently burned Aemon Targaryen in and the residue of his royal blood helps bring back Jon. This could also help flame the Azor Ahia theories.

  • In the book, there is always strong hint magic and dragons are tied together. The red priests found their “power” increase after the rebirth of dragons. As the dragons get bigger and stronger, so does the “red god” power.

    At this point, I think it’s safe to say Melisandre is 90% responsible for Lord Commander’s resurrection (it’s not a possibility, it’s a given). Which brings a very interesting relationship between Jon, Melisandre & Davos.

  • Melisandre will cut Olly’s throat in her chamber before the funeral. She does some bloodmagic with the victim. After that will come the funeral and Jon will reborn in the fire, he walks out from it and kills Alliser.

  • Has anyone seen my body? Its terrible being a head. Tell Jon his mother is ugh choo. …excuse me

  • Sadly, I predict the magic ingredient will be Ghost, for several reasons, mythical and logistic: 1) In GRRM’s world, it’s clear that for a sacrifice to ‘count’ it has to be intensely personal, and leave a bitter taste (think of Jaime’s sword hand, Bran’s climbing legs, Dany’s sun-and-stars, Arya’s eyes, Theon’s favorite toy, Sansa’s illusions, for which she traded Lady, etc.)Shireen was necessary to melt the snow, to see how far Stannis would go to fulfil his ‘destiny,’ and to reposition Mel at the wall; Shireen’s energy has been ‘used up.’ Besides, Shireen means nothing to Jon; nor does Mel, for that matter. Aemon dead; Sam departed; Arya a world away—that leaves only Ghost. 2) Prologue of ADWD, in which warging is carefully described as a sacred wedding between one man and his wolf; wolf as wife; wife as Nissa-Nissa; you can do the math. 3) If ‘King’s blood’ is needed, the direwolf, Ghost in particular, is described as a second life fit for a King, and who would dispute that Ghost is the King of direwolves, as Nymeria is their Queen? 4) Set rumours that the green ‘ghost-stick’ has figured prominently in the Mel scenes being filmed under wraps. 5) Considerations of CGI cost and production delay, in addition to uncomfortably stretching the limits of some of the actors’ imagination, may attract D&D to ridding themselves of as much CGI as early as possible. The challenges of translating the importance of the direwolves to the screen has always been a major weakness in the screen adaptation of ASOIAF (although they don’t skimp on dragons!) 6) The promotional poster…I read the red splashes on Jon’s face as Ghost’s blood, and Jon’s tears, crying for his lost direwolf, his lost identity. 7) ‘It is known’ that D&D relish going all ‘Bolton’ on us, so, when in doubt, a direwolf execution is guaranteed to rip out the hearts of the direwolf-loving audience contingent! 8) All endings are contained in their beginnings (think of Dayne and Ned’s exchange in the TOJ). In the beginning, we were told: his name is ‘Ghost.’

    I sincerely hope I’m wrong on all counts, and that, instead, we will see Mel/Carice in all her naked flaming glory, giving life (without having to kill anyone) to that ‘even bigger scene’ she promised, giving Jon the ‘kiss of life’ as he’s ‘kissed by fire’…although, that could be problematic, if Bran wargs at the same time, which might open up the producers to accusations of pedophilia (but, then again, when did relative considerations of ‘taste’ and morality ever dissuade them..? They’ve already done incest and rape, so where to next..?)

    • As I’ve said before the cost for Jon is the resurrection itself. I don’t think they will off Ghost because the dire wolf is central to his identity as a Targarian/Stark (is that a new great house in the making – the TargStarks?) Though I do think Thorne and co will want Ghost dead. Making that happen will however be costly.
      The next question is whether their is an ice dragon entombed within the wall that is the source of its power and hence Mel’s. And again what part will the Old God’s play in this resurrection? I can’t see it being easy for Mel, perhaps the cost of working this magic will be to make her question her understanding of what and who the red god is in relation to all others.

    • No.

      No no no no no.

      NO!

      Please stop letting ideas like these slip out lest they transpire.

      *eyes closed, fingers in ears, la la la CANT HEAR YOU la la la*

      ?

    • I don’t think they’ll kill ghost because his is at the heart of the action and is needed as a symbol of the North on action.


      Ghost is also a symbolic representation of Jons targ-stark blood and is important for the story.

      I also think you are over looking the old gods. Jons tears are those of the weirwood tree, and as they are tears of blood and red their is a link to Mel and Blood Raven who have red eyes, in the books at least and the ability to see the future – Jon

    • I agree re direwolves/dragons, I’ve always found it strange, the wolves are equally as important to the story as the dragons, it’s so frustrating how little we get to see of Ghost, and that they’ve left out all mention of Nymeria and her pack. Hopefully it’ll be addressed next season now Arya’s gone blind and her third eye should start to open.

  • Nice metaphora,

    I think I read a rumour that ghost plays a part in the battle of bastards.
    I think it’s too obvious that Melisandre brings back Jon myself everyone wants it to happen, but they have to have a twist.
    I believe bran will warg into Jon
    Hence why you don’t see his eyes in the poster, HBO and cast keep saying jon snow is dead….. Well that would be true but bran can live on through him.
    Bran has more reason to take back winterfell too.
    I think bran will also find out the parentage of Jon, (unfortunately Jon won’t) Which will mean “bran will fly” (dragons)
    Bran can’t be stuck looking at memories up in the trees for the rest of the story he has to do something super interesting.
    And that would do it.
    Live the days in Jon
    It’s a twist, and it kinda works
    But it’s just a theory.

    • If Bran wargs into another being for too long he loses more and more of his true self. I’m not sure what would happen to Bran & his body if he was just warging thru Jons lifeless body for long stretches of time. Plus Bran will have other roles to play, more important roles. For this reason I don’t see your theory coming to pass, but I like the creativity within it. Don’t forget Mel also saw Bran in the fires along with the 3 eyed Raven.

    • “I believe bran will warg into Jon”

      That’s what a few of us were speculating (from the teaser promo when it came out) but were deemed crackpot because “Bran cannot warg a dead body, that couldn’t happen” :) We shall see…in 5 freaking months ahhhg.

    • On the ‘bran will fly’ point. I don’t see the connection you are making. Is it he will warg a dragon or is it he will ‘bond’ with a dragon on account of his being Jon Targ the blood of the dragon? Because he isn’t the blood of the dragon but merely warging one and I think it unlikely that would trick a dragon. It’s just too much of a leap for me.

      Also Winterfell is a side issue. The WW are the main event, combatting them means war, commanding armies and developing military strategy. Jon has some experience of this. Bran on the other hand could barely shoot an arrow before his fall.

      I don’t understand why Tree Bran is so hard for some people to accept. Is it not interesting or plot pivotal enough perhaps? Because I think him being ‘stuck’ in a tree looking at ‘memories’ will be central to the outcome of the coming battles and for me that’s pretty awesome!

    • When you say Bran will ride dragons do you mean he will warg a dragon or that he will ride one on account of having warged Jon Targ and therefore be ‘blood of the dragon’? Just because with the second I don’t think a dragon would be bluffed.
      Also the retaking Winterfell thing is totally secondary. The battle with the walkers is the main event and will require someone with military skill and experience who is also a strategist and leader of men. When we last saw Bran before his fall he was struggling to shoot an arrow whereas Jon…
      I also don’t understand the reluctance to accept Tree Bran as is. ‘Stuck looking at memories’ is actually ‘super interesting’ since it’s going to be crucial to counter the impending doom. I think his function will go way beyond revealing the truth of the ToJ and into explaining the WW and that only through this can a solution (defeat or treaty) be found. Also he is in the north beyond the wall, soon the only ‘human’ left up there, possibly him being in that location is important too.

    • There were also rumors that Hodor (or the actor) was seen filming towards the end of the season and was rumored to be showing up back near Winterfeld. So some are assuming Bran has warged into Hodor to travel back to accomplish some task.

    • Jon SNOW is dead.He will be brought back to life by Melisandre as Jon STARK.once he dies,he is released from his night watch vows not to wed a woman,or be involved in affairs of kings,etc.Once reborn as Jon Stark,he can now take his rightful place as Lord of Winterfell and Warden of the North(once a certain Bolton bastard is out of the way).I think Bran will reveal to Jon his true parentage.Or perhaps Howland Reed,the only livingwitness to the events aat the Tower of Joy,will make an appearance.Or maybe he told his daughter what happened there,and she told Bran.Jon is obviously the “Ice”(Stark)and”Fire”(Targaryan) of the title.perhaps he will marry Danerys and restore balance between the two forces.

  • Hi Bran flakes– Your theory appeals to me, specially since I’ll believe anything to avoid facing animal cruelty and Stark heartbreak (glad Joffrey’s gone, although Jack Gleeson is a honey!). But, how far do you think we ought to trust what GRRM says, specifically regarding his reassurance that Jon will discover his parentage, and how pivotal this revelation is, given that it was D&D’s ‘exam’ question? Kind-of defeats the impact, were Jon’s ‘bastard’ consciousness to be extinguished. (imagine if Cersei were to warg into Tyrion, following his death, when ‘he’ finally discovers ‘where whores go’…No, that wouldn’t ‘work’! I like the idea of Bran saving his body a-la-Hodor, for a time, but I don’t think it suits the story to do away with Jon’s mind altogether. If memory serves me, I think GRRM once said that the image of discovering the wolves in the snow, together with a boy falling from a tower, were seminal, archetypal images which came to him, coalesced in his mind, seeded and anchored the whole story. It’s a pity that the TV series was unable to do justice to the spiritual connection with the wolves. But, hoping they do a good job with Bran’s arc, even though he is physically incapacitated, which, as you point out, does not lend itself to action TV. The ink is dry; the future is written; only we are oblivious! Exciting times!

    • Totally agree. Too much character set up to all just get spunked on some creepy zombie scenario.

      And no DIRE wolf consequences this time, just how I like it Metaphora ?

      • Ha ha, indeed, heartily support your slogan, ‘no dire wolf consequences!’ (perhaps it’s reverse psychology; the more lurid and intricate my dire wolf predictions, the less statistically likely it’s to transpire that way come April, right..?) Btw, talking of the lupine, what is your take on Summer’s role to come, now that Bran is increasingly tree-bound and captivated by the hypnotic tones of Max v. Sydow’s sonorous voice? The wolves are losing out: Bran’s ravenification; Jon a crow, whom everyone wants to be a dragon; Sansa’s for the birds, in more ways than one; Arya the cats; sure Rickon is still holding strong with Shaggy, but they seem to have gone rogue and dropped off ‘planetos’…It’s time the wolves got with the prophecy, and returned!

    • What if Jon just doesn’t die. I mean he’s not confirmed dead at the end. What if nothing special happens involving magic or other craziness. What if he just survives and recovers from his wounds with some good old fashion medical assistance. That would be the best twist since everyone is expecting something off the wall.

      • Jacob, after reading the book when it first came out, and GRRM’s statement, “Oh, you think he’s dead do you?” Plus, being an RN and knowing there is a chance with quick medical intervention, coupled with the slim chance that no vital organs or aorta was damaged, this could be the case. However, I have since revised my opinion based on HBO’s and cast insistence that “Jon Snow is deader than dead”. That said, I do find it peculiar that in all these months since the Season 5 finale, I don’ t think we have had one interview with DnD addressing Jon Snow’s death. At least, none that I am aware of. If I’m wrong, could someone direct me?

  • It baffles me that people still talk about prophecies and heroes in Game of Thrones, who’s made a hobby of subverting this kind of tropes since the beginning.

    The real question is why wouldn’t Thorne and the NW burn Jon’s body after killing him, since they KNOW for a fact that the dead come back. Unlike the books, these guys are traitorious bastards and wouldn’t give two shits about Melissandre or her god. Hell, why isn’t Davos cutting her throat?

    Even if they do resurrect Jon. You think people will care for a legal loophole as “lol I already died so my oath’s fulfilled” and not cut his head for desertion?

    I think one of the reasons George is taking so much time in finishing his books is that he’s feeding D&D so much bullshit that by the time he actually does get the next one published, the show will be so incredibly apart from the books it’ll be impossible to backtrack all this weird changes, and the ending will have to be different, and thus surprise the readers even after the show’s finished.

    • Rather like your little DnD speculation there!
      I’ve been thinking about this whole I’m a ‘gardener rather than an architect’ thing with GRRM. We put so much time and effort into speculation and trying to figure out a million little mysteries from how J will resurrect, who is the volanquar…. the Gravedigger, to the hooded man, the Mad Mouse etc etc on and on and on. Does the level of prefiguring and planning required for all these mysteries big and small square with an author who describes himself as a gardener? You say about George being a great breaker of tropes (which incidentally I’m not yet fully convinced is the case, but either way) add this to all the speculations and mystery and the scale and intricacy…from a gardener?!

      …are we heading for an *ouch*?

  • A combination of an endgameofthrones theory on Melisandre and this excellent article seems very GRRM.
    If fire is at war with ice then a fire priestess being stronger around ice seems counter intuitive. There are several explanations for this contradiction:
    1. Magic has loyalty to neither fire nor ice.
    2. Melisandres God is fake, but an important part of her deception in persuading the masses to her endgame. She wants to tap into any magic sources purely to increase her power.
    3. She has been an Ice Priestess all along, and fire is part of the deception. And she looked into the ice the morning after sacrificing Shireen because she sees her true visions in ice.
    4. Her God is real but is toying with her.
    5. There is no magic. Just good, old fashioned technology. She has access to an alien device that records future events.
    6. She has been tricked and sent visions by a person with an extremely powerful gift.

      • And 8. It’s not about the battle between fire and ice but rather about creating balance between these two elemental forces.

  • Well this was a fun one!! People were able to express their opinions and thoughts on different theories without being attacked. I love being able to read what other people speculate. You guys are so clever! Awesome!

  • In GOT when Dany and Jorah enter the tent because she starts giving birth, she sees non human figures dancing. One is described as the shadow of a great wolf and the other is described as a man wreathed in flames. These were the “powers old and dark” that Mirri Maz Duur was talking about waking. The man wreathed in flames was the incarnation of R’hllor, while the shadow of the great wolf is the incarnation of the Great Other. That really makes the Starks’ connection to the Others a real thing, validitating the theory that Jon is both the houses of Ice and Fire (Stark and Targaryen). In the next Bran chapter, Maester Luwin tells the history of the Children of the Forest and says the North was the only kingdom that resisted the Andals and the only one(ruled by Starks) that kept the old gods. I believe the old gods (weirwoods, the earth) are essentially the god of Nature. R’hllor is the god of Man. Nature preserves itself and will always find a way to continue, like ice. Where as Man consumes all things and seeks domination, like fire. Aemon says too “cold preserves, fire consumes”.
    Also when gazing into the fires, Melisandre sees a wooden face, corpse white, a thousand red eyes, and a boy with a wolf’s head beside him. She thinks to herself that they must be the Great Other’s champions, as Stannis is hers. The vision of Melisandre with Bloodraven and Bran as champions of The Great Other is corroborated in the exchange: “Never fear the darkness, Bran…The strongest trees are rooted in the dark places of the earth. Darkness will be your cloak, your shield, your mother’s milk. Darkness will make you strong.” Melisandre in her chapter claims sleep is a little death where the Great Other whispers dreams to people luring them into his eternal night. Maybe all the dreams the characters have are created by Bloodraven too.

    • Enjoyed your analysis, Mylo. The equation of ice with darkness and death (‘bad’), and fire with light and life (‘good’) would be too simplistic. Reading your thoughts, that passage of Bran leaving Winterfell occurred to me: ‘Beyond, the tops of the keeps and towers still stood as they had for hundreds of years, and it was hard to tell that the castle had been sacked and burned at all. The stone is strong, Bran told himself, the roots of the trees go deep, and under the ground the Kings of Winter sit their thrones. So long as those remained, Winterfell remained. It was not dead, just broken. Like me, he thought. I’m not dead either.’

      The dichotomy of fire = human endeavor vs. ice = nature is similarly problematic. Some fires are out of human control, e.g. stars, dragons on the loose, ‘the Doom’ that claimed Valyria itself; and sometimes ice is a useful tool when you want to construct a wall, or cool your summer wine! As you suggest, there must be an intersection. I think one could also make a case for deconstructing the ‘cold preserves; fire consumes’ distinction. As we’re repeatedly told, one reason Winterfell endures, in addition to the weirwood and the crypts, is that it’s constructed on a system of hot springs (? dragon brewing…), which have been strategically diverted to warming the walls and enabling plants to grow in the greenhouse. The hot spring is one of Hodor’s great joys, and he’s one of the old children of the North!

      Although it seems that he is being co-opted by ‘the great other,’ Bran Stark’s destiny is unlikely to be divorced from human endeavor. After all, he’s descended from a long line of smiths, essentially: ‘builders,’ ‘breakers,’ ‘shipwrights,’ even ‘burners’… Ultimately, the great paradox of the great other is that humans are of nature, even as they (we) take a stand against ‘it,’ harnessing and being harnessed by that very nature. So, who is the great other, if not ourselves?

      • I don’t believe there are any really deities at all. The ice and fire things are merely metaphorical. Many Starks were known to have fire in them in the emotional sense.

      • I don’t believe there are any real deities at all. The ice and fire things are merely metaphorical. Many Starks were known to have fire in them in the emotional sense.

  • Jon does not need the Red God’s evil magic to resurrect him as he has both the blood of the dragon and the blood of the wolf in his veins (R + L = J). He has the magic of both as well. IMO the Stark’s magic is even more powerful than Targ magic because it is the magic of the Old Gods, the Children of the Forest, the Wildings and the First Men, even the magic of the Others. As one poster wrote, the magic of the Old Gods is the magic of nature (pure); the magic of Rhollor, the Red God is the magic of men, therefore corrupt.

    Jon’s body will be burned because NW fear reanimation as a Night Walker. The NW will find Jon’s unburned body in the ashes, like Jorah found Daeneris. However Jon will be in some sort of coma for a period of time (Jon foresees this). During this time, Bran’s magic will help Jon discover who his parents are and what his destiny is. Jon is Azor Ahai Reborn. He is the Song of Fire and Ice.

    Although Jon may kill Mellisandre for her evil deeds, her death would not be necessary for his resurrection. When the Windlings and WunWun find out what the NW has done to Jon, they will go crazy and kill a lot of NK, so there will be deaths aplenty and enough blood to fill an ocean.

    Furthermore, I also think that even though Jon is the true heir to the Iron Throne ( Ithink Lyanna and Rhaegar did get married), he will not want it. He will want to free the North from the Iron Throne permanently. He will either be KIng of the North himself, or possibly King of the Wildings and support either Rickon or Sansa as King or Queen of the North.

    One thing is for sure, I do not want him to marry his Aunt Daeneris: that is just too icky for me.

    Anyway, that’s my story, and I’m sticking to it.

  • “Queen Selyse was adamant. None of these was the chosen of R’hllor. And none of them paid the price. Lady Melisandre will tell you, my lord. Only death can pay for life.” – (Davos, A Storm of Swords)