[Discussion][Song of Ice and Fire] Finished A Dance with Dragons

So I finished A Dance with Dragons last night.

I have lots of theories spinning around in my head now, thanks to new information from the book.

I still believe that Jon Snow is the child of Lyanna and Rhaegar. The story that Davos was told about Ned and the fisherwoman didn't exactly come from a reliable source, look at how he described Tyrion's escape and murder of Tywin as "fact". That being said, there is probably some kernels of truth in there.

There have been two woman named as potential mothers for Jon: Ashara Dayne and Wylla, Edric Dayne's wet nurse.

Ironically enough, after reading ADWD, I think Ned did sire a bastard on Ashara Dayne. Ser Barriston's recollection was of a daughter that was stillborn, however. It would certainly give Ned extra motivation to claim Jon as his own. His own honour would demand that he expose his shame for dishonouring his marriage as siring a bastard, so claiming Jon would be a suitable penance.

As for Wylla, she was most likely the fisherwoman who took Ned back north to rally his banners. She was quite likely pregnant. I'm leaning towards the idea that the child didn't survive. I'd guess she either served as Jon Snow's wet nurse (which would still leave him and Edric Dayne as milk brothers), or agreed to claim Jon Snow as her own child to prevent Lady Ashara from being tainted by the association and/or to keep Jon from being killed by Robert. Or she could just like the idea of claiming she had Eddard Stark in her bed.

I really really wish we had a more coherent account of the events of the false spring tournament, and Robert's Rebellion. Everything has been handed to us piecemeal, and even the pieces haven't been whole. I'm waiting for Bran to sort this all out for us. Why else would we need a greenseer?

I'm really beginning to wonder about the circumstances behind Rhaegar kidnapping Lyanna, too. It's been labelled as kidnapping and rape, but that doesn't fit what we've learned of Rhaegar's character. We know Robert loved Lyanna, but did Lyanna love Robert? Could she have voluntarily gone with Rhaegar? That's what I'm leaning towards more and more.

So. The dragon must have three heads. My personal theory is that Jon is one of them.

But he was killed at the end of this book!

Was he?

I would have sworn that Theon was killed in the third book, but was proven wrong in this one. Martin's "killed" a number of viewpoint characters in the last couple of books who have not turned out to be dead. Or who have been brought back to life through sorcery: Catelyn, Brienne, Theon, Davos, Bran and Rickon...

We know that Jon has been seriously wounded. If he does die, there's always the possibility that Melisandre will bring him back like Thoros did for Dondarrion.

I also don't believe that Stannis is dead, and have doubts about whether Ramsay has Mance and the spearwives. He would only need one to learn the truth.

So, if Jon is alive and is a Targaryen, is he one of the three heads of the dragon? I like to think so. The main argument against is the burn he suffered killing the wight. The question is, are the Targaryens (or at least, true Dragons) supposed to be immune to all fire? Or just dragon-related ones? Hmmmm...

Alright, let's assume he is one of the heads, who's the third? I don't think it's the obvious choice.

Quentyn, of course, was eliminated as a possible candidate in the same book he was introduced. His is a death I do believe in.

Then was have Aegon, the babe who didn't die. He's now sailed to Westeros, and has made a good start making his claim.

The question is, is he really Aegon?

We only have the words of Varys and Illyrio for this.

But wait! He has the Targaryen eyes! And (we can only assume) the silver hair under the dye!

Going to shoot myself in the foot here on my Jon theory, but: Having purple eyes does not necessarily mean Targaryen. As we know from the suspicions of the identity of Jon's mother, and the description of Edric Dayne, the Dayne family seems to look very similar to the Targaryens, with purple eyes and pale hair.

If it were anyone besides Varys and Illyrio, I might have trusted more. Those two have schemes upon schemes, and I don't trust their motives at all. All they needed to do was find a babe that had the right colouring (or even a child). They waited a few years to present the child to Jon Connington, a friend of Rhaegar's who felt like he'd failed him. Why would he look such a gift horse in the mouth? Why would he question further? The story of Aegon's survival is quite possible, given the circumstances. Maybe that's why I don't trust it.

The other issue is, he's been introduced so late. The lad seems noble enough, he's certainly been raised well, but he doesn't feel like a Targaryen to me. I think he's the mummer's dragon Quaithe warned Daenerys about.

So who do I think is the third head of the dragon?

Before this book, I had a secret hope that it would turn out to be Bran. After all, he's going to fly! And he's related to Jon, if not Daenerys. Maybe being a skinchanger would make up for not having Targaryen blood, after all there's no other Targaryens.

This book presented two possible candidates for the third head, one died and I believe one to be false.

I still no longer believe the third head will be Bran.

I think it will be Tyrion.

Hear me out!

It was such a little comment, but it made sense when slotted in with other factors: Mad King Aerys loved/lusted after Tywin's wife. I would not put it past him to have bedded her at some point. Whether Tywin knew or not I'm not willing to speculate at this point. Either way, the potential is there for Tyrion to be Targaryen stock. Like Jon Snow, he'd still have the blood of his supposed father through his mother: Tywin married his cousin, also a Lannister. Tyrion has a fascination with dragons he has carried since boyhood, and even played with fire down in the dungeons and cellars of Casterly Rock. He looked at the dragon skulls in the Red Keep, and found them beautiful. Even Arya was severely discomfited by them.

With the three of them, they also bring most of Westeros together. Jon brings the North and Wildlings (perhaps Stannis' followers if/when he winds up dead and Melisandre gives her backing), Tyrion the west and Dorne (through his own outreach, and Myrcella) and possibly the Vale through either Sansa or the Mountain clans, while Daenerys brings houses that were loyal to Targaryen such as Highgarden. If Sansa manages to survive, she can bring the Vale for Jon (perhaps being a little more sympathetic to bastards after her ruse) or Tyrion. Since Loras has not died of his wounds yet I'm doubting he will, so he could bring the Storm Lords (he was loyal to Renly, after all).

Moving on to another topic, I'm probably not alone in my frustration with Daenerys concerning her infatuation with Daario. Ser Barriston makes a good point about her being young, but I think the relationship has been specifically set up for a structural purpose.

Afterall, we know how the true Lightbringer must be forged. I doubt Martin wants his readers to be extremely wroth with him, so why not create a realistic love-interest whom the readers won't mind seeing cut down? Better than one of our favourite characters. Dany's grief won't be any less because ours is.

Of course, this is all speculation. The only theory I'm really married to is the one about Jon Snow.

Hopefully it won't be another six years to find out more. XD