A Storm of Swords Journal – Part 9 (SPOILERS)

Page 461 – 527

Jon:

I was right!  The men Bran sees are the Wildlings with Jon Snow!  But before they arrive at Queenstower, Jon and Ygritte have many interesting conversations that really highlight the differences between those beyond the Wall and those of the Realm – also the similarities.  Jon is growing increasingly bothered by his betrayal, but also, as his feelings deepen for Ygritte and the men he’s coming to know, he worries about them as well.

Once at Queenstower, they come across the one man Bran first saw with his fire.  He’s old and not bothering anyone, but the Wildlings demand that Jon slay him – mostly as an act of loyalty.  Jon refuses and Ygritte gets pissed so she slits his throat herself (the old man, not Jon).  Jon knows he’s in deep shit, but Summer comes to the rescue slaughtering many Wildlings and Jon sees his only chance of escape.  He begins to slaughter as well, eventually hopping on a horse and riding for hours.  When he dismounts he discovers that the has a nasty arrow wound in his leg.

This scene should be spectacular on the show, don’t you think?  I wonder what will happen with Ygritte?  Will they ever find each other again?  Was she the one who shot him?  Exciting times!

Danaerys:

Speaking of exciting, Dany has discovered a taste for war, victory, and ultimately, blood.  Along with her new army (who she’s freed, essentially) and many of the citizens of Ghris (who are weighing her down, but she won’t abandon them), she arrives at Yunkai and hopes to overtake this city as well – mostly to free the slaves and give her men some practice in actual battle.  A little good with the bad.

The three different peoples of the city are invited (well, their leaders are invited) to join her cause peacefully.  She gives them until the next morning, or in one case, three days, to acquiesce or she will attack.  Despite these promises, she sneak attacks in the middle of the night and wins.  One of the leaders actually pledges his allegiance to her before the attack and helps sack the other tribes.  When Dany marches into the city three days later, the freed slaves come out, shouting at her lovingly, touching her, and devotedly calling her ‘Mother’.  Dany is pleased with herself.  She only lost 12 men.

Dany is GANGSTA.

Arya:

Poor Arya – AGAIN.  Will this child never get a break?  Seriously.  I almost dread her chapters now.  There’s more red priest stuff.  She discovers that Jon Snow’s mother, Wylla, was wetnurse to fellow outlaw child Ned, also a high born lad.  He also informs her that her Lord Father also was in love with Lady Ashara a high born Dornish woman before he was married to Catelyn.  Arya gets mad at Ned for these stories because she believes they cheapen her father’s honor.

They also find out from the crazy old lady who always wants a song in payment for her information that Riverrun is to be attacked and taken by the Lannisters.  Apparently, Catelyn and Robb and many others will have moved on to The Twin’s for Edmure’s wedding, so they’ll be safe.  Still, a crippling defeat.  Arya gets upset and runs away when they suggest not taking her back to her mother if it’s not possible.  Guess who catches her?  Sandor Clegane, the Hound himself.  DAMMIT. But he was so nice to Sansa – so maybe there’s hope.

Jaime:

Happily making his way back to Kings Landing,  Jaime finds himself reminiscing of past journeys in these same woods.  Happier times, at least for him.  He’s still quite feverish and they give him dreamwine to help him sleep.  He has a nightmare that’s he’s been abandoned in the dark belly of Casterly Rock to await some sort of DOOM!  Who should arrive to help him?  That’s right, Brienne.  Feeling guilty much, Jaime?

When he awakes, Jaime bribes his guardsmen to take him back to Harrenhal, saying he forgot something.  Of course, he’s speaking of Brienne!  When they get back, Jaime finds Brienne in the fighting pit with a huge ass bear of the non-teddy variety.  They’ve also given her only a fake sword and no armor.  Vargo is a sicko.  Jaime jumps in to save her valiantly and Bolton’s other men take the bear out with some arrows.  When asked why he came back for her, Jaime says “I dreamed of you.”  Love their relationship so freakin’ much.

Catelyn:

The Stark/Tully party is making their way down to The Twins for Edmure’s party.  The weather is dismal and all the rivers are flooded.  Edmure hopes his new bride will be attractive.  Catelyn chastises everyone.  Her mother hen routine gets annoying at times.  She keeps reminding Robb about how kiss-ass he needs to be.  Robb knows – he doesn’t need her hounding.

Robb knows he needs to name an heir in his place until Queen Jeyne provides one.  He can’t have Tyrion taking Winterfell and the North.  He informs his mother that Jon Snow is who he intends to name.  Catelyn is livid.  King Robb doesn’t care.

Balon Greyjoy is dead.  Oh no.  That Melisandre bitch’s spell is starting to come true.  I smell bad things for Robb.

Robb’s new battle plan involves hopping on some boats and taking the Iron Islands and the North.  He’s sending his mother to another friendly castle as prisoner…err…I mean, guest.

He has all his men sign his ‘this is who will be my heir’ document at the end of the chapter, but we never see who is named.  This is just some scary ass foreshadowing.

A Storm of Swords Journal – Part 8 (SPOILERS)

Pages 404 – 460

Davos:

So, I read pretty far ahead and can only hope I do these chapters justice.

Davos is summoned from the dungeon by Stannis.  The new Hand – brother to the former Hand who just happens to be Davos’s cellmate – threatens Davos that unless he tells Stannis that he agrees with the Hand’s plan to attack Claw Island (I think that’s what it was called), he’ll meet an untimely end.  Davos agrees.

But Davos is an honest man, at least to his King.  He tells Stannis the plan is stupid and cowardly.  The Florent is sent away to get Melisandre.  Stannis knows about his plot to kill the red priestess, but doesn’t seem too concerned – just still trying to convince Davos that she is amazing.  Davos will never believe this.  Anyway, Stannis makes Davos a Lord and his new Hand.  Can you feel the love?

Melisandre comes in and performs some magic involving leeches and Edric Storm’s blood (Melisandre wants to sacrifice the bastard child, but Stannis refuses to kill his nephew).  Part of this black magic involves not very good things for Robb.  Oh goodness.

Not a super exciting chapter.

Jaime:

Jaime has been invited to dine with Roose Bolton, but must first bathe.  He finds a naked Brienne bathing and hops on in with her.  Such a weird scene.  If they film this, I think I’ll giggle.  Anyway, they have a very interesting conversation about the circumstances surrounding Jaime’s slaying of King Aerys.  Turns out, he’s not such a horrific Kingslayer after all.

He keeps hurting his stub and almost passes out.  Oddly, Brienne gently finishes bathing and dressing him.  Almost motherly.  Oh yeah – Jaime’s naked body reacted to her naked body!

At the dinner, Jaime learns he is to be returned to Kings Landing, but poor Brienne is being  handed back to Vargo for all his raping pleasure.  I wanted to stab Bolton in his disgusting eyeballs.  I hope Brienne kills them all.

Tyrion:

The Martells and other big, bad Dornish Lords and Ladies are set to arrive at Kings Landing.  Tywin sends Tyrion and some others out to greet them – a slight not having Joff or himself go.

The head Martell who was supposed to come is home sick and instead the more sinister, younger Martell is in his stead.  Tyrion begins to worry.  He figures the Martells who hate the Tyrells and aren’t a fan of the Lannisters are up to no good.  They exchange pleasantries and ugly stories about Tyrion’s birth – Cersei was such a little bitch even in youth.  Then the thinly covered threats are outed.  Martell wants revenge for the slaying of Elia, wife of Aerys – he’s holding a major grudge.  Tyrion warns him that he’s drastically outnumbered.  I hope the wedding turns into a war.

Arya:

The bandits – I think they call themselves the brown brothers – battle and defeat some of the Brave Companions.  Sandor has been let go, stripped of his gold.  Arya learns about the many times Beric has died and been reborn by Thoros.  Gendry decides he wants to stay with the outlaws as their blacksmith which hurts Arya – he’s one of her only friends in the world.  She feels abandoned by everyone.  She wants the Hound dead.  I want the tv peeps to change this.  I want Gendry to stay apart of Arya’s life and the show!

Luckily, the Hound reappears with more threats, demanding his gold back.  Beric tells him they’ll have to pay him after the war is over – that they currently have no gold.  Sandor is pissed, but leaves.  They know he is probably sniffing around somewhere close so everyone’s on their toes and a bit frightened.

I love Arya and feel really bad for her.  I can’t believe Gendry would abandon her.  Why can’t he just go with her to Riverrun and serve as a blacksmith there?  He’ll get paid and be able to have a family and a home.  I hope he finds out soon that he’s Robert’s bastard son.  I want him and Arya to get married one day.  I’m making my sad face.

Bran:

Holy Moly – Bran finally has a halfway decent chapter!  They find a tower in the middle of a lake to stop for the night because a monster storm’s a brewin’.  The tower is called Queenscrown and there’s a backstory that I won’t go into.  Anyway, the causeway leading to the tower is under water so they feel fairly safe stopping for the night.  Once inside, they manage to make it to the top of the tower, but notice a fire coming from the abandoned village.  Then, they notice many more men stopping to seek shelter from the storm and grow increasingly terrified.  Hodor begins to shout and they can’t seem to shut him up – they know they’ve been heard.  I suspect the Wildling raiders with Jon Snow.

Bran manages to channel Hodor for a quick second to shut him up which scares him – Bran is getting stronger.  Then he channels his wolf on command and feels Summer’s fear as he closes in on the abandoned village and its new denizens.  Chapter ends.  Should be a great suspenseful end to an episode!

A Storm of Swords Journal – Part 7 (SPOILERS)

Pages 342 – 403

Jaime:

So…they sliced off Jaime’s sword hand.  He feels like that might have been all he was…that one hand.  The Brave Companions treat Jaime and Brienne like complete shit – tied up together at all times with Jaime’s rotten hand hanging around his neck.  Lovely.

When they come to rape Brienne, Jaime saves her.  He does shit like that and then I sort of like him, but he’s evil.  Right? RIGHT?  They arrive at Harrenhal where Roose Bolton and his men are stationed.  Bolton is disgusted at how the prisoners have been treated.  Since Brienne pledges her allegiances to House Stark he releases her from her shackles and sends her off to bathe and get new clothes.  Jaime is sent off to the fallen Maester to see about his hand.  He refuses to let them cut off his arm, even if the infection means death.  The Maester cleans Jaime’s stump the best he can.  Meanwhile, Jaime learns about what happened with the  Battle of Blackwater Bay and some of the aftermath, including Joff’s new bride-to-be.

I think I like Jaime and now I feel dirty.

Tyrion:

Tyrion is out on Tywin’s orders inspecting the damage done to Kings Landing and estimating that there isn’t enough money in the realm to fix it.  Then he heads over to that singer’s house to threaten him all the while planning on having Bronn kill him.  Things are not going well with Sansa.

Tywin requests his presence and shows him the two Valyrian swords he had made – one for Joffrey as a wedding gift and the other for his son.  For just a moment, I thought Tywin might mean Tyrion, but no.  He demands Tyrion find a way to pay for the repairs and a way to bed Sansa Stark.  Cheery times.

Shae seems nonplussed by Tyrion’s new wife.

Pycelle brings news of the Wall and suggests placing Janos Slynt as Commander since everyone assumes Mormont is dead.  Tyrion loudly objects, gets overruled, and wishes he had killed Slynt when he had the chance.

Samwell:

The surviving members of the attack have made it back to Crastor’s.  Sam is trying to nurse the near dead back to life, but to no avail.  Men have mockingly started calling him ‘Slayer’.  Crastor wants the men gone.  Mormont decides he’ll leave on the morrow.  Crastor holds a pretty sad feast for their farewell.

At the feast, the Watchmen get pissed at Crastor’s offerings and slay him.  Next they slay Mormont for trying to discipline them.  Basically, hell breaks loose and the men start raping the women and looting the place.  Several more men die.  Sam gives up as the Old Bear lays dying in his lap until Gilly, her new son, and two other women convince him that he must leave as Mormont wishes – back to the Wall to let everyone know what has happened.

Another scene that should film well.  These men are bat shit and it’s time the Realm offered up honorable men to the Wall or everyone is going to die.  Sam must now get the message out that dragonglass and fire is the only way to take out the Others.  I’m sad to see the Old Bear go, especially in this manor.  He wants Sam to tell Jorah that he forgives him.

Arya:

The man the bandits have captured is Sandor Clegane.  I figured it was him.  They all travel to Ser Beric Dondarrion and Thoros the red priest to hold the Hound accountable for his crimes.  Arya can’t wait to see him die in punishment for killing Mycah, the Butcher’s boy.

Clegane is sentenced to trial by combat and will go up against Ser Beric himself.  Beric’s body shows the scars of fatal wounds, yet he still lives.  Beric now serves the Lord of Light so you know magic is involved.  The Hound pretty much slices Beric in half after a tiresome battle and is declared winner, thus innocent of his crimes.  Arya grabs a dagger to take care of him herself, but watches as Clegane cries like a baby over his new burns.  At the end of the chapter, we realize that Beric has returned to the living.  Oh dear at all this magic.

Another fantastic film-worthy scene.  Arya has become quite hungry for revenge and death, has she not?  I worry about her now.  I see her ending up in very dark places.  I wonder what Beric will do with her?

Catelyn:

Lord Hoster, her father, has died.  They hold the funeral services for him.  Some Frey men have come to discuss the betrayal and Lord Frey’s new commands.  Spirits are not high.

The Freys also bring word of a burned and destroyed Winterfell as well as the slaying of the smallfolk and Robb’s men.  Apparently the little Freys who were taken in as wardens of Winterfell managed to escape with Bolton’s bastard along with the women and children of the castle.  The defeat among Robb and his men is palpable.  No one knows what happened to Theon.

Lord Frey has promised to forgive Robb as long as he comes to The Twins to apologize in person as well as having Lord Edmure Tully agree to wed his 16-year-old daughter, Roslin, immediately.  Edmure wants none of this, but what can he do?  He complies.

I miss Robb’s direwolf.  I don’t know what he should do next.  Catelyn wants him to bend the knee and go home to defend his own castle.  Robb refuses.

A Storm of Swords Journal – Part 6 (SPOILERS)

Pages 294-341

Jon:

We’re finally back with Jon and Ygritte!  But first, Jon and the Wildling party are preparing to cross the Wall.  Jon says a sad goodbye to Ghost, who won’t be able to come (hopefully, this is only a temporary parting!).  Jon is forced to share more information about the Watch, all the while feeling guiltier and guiltier about his betrayal.  Yet, he knows if he’s caught lying they will kill him and Ygritte and still attack the Wall.  He thinks about his father a lot during this chapter.

We don’t get to see Jon and Ygritte’s first night together except through flashbacks which are highly guilt ridden from Jon’s perspective.  But what we do know is that Jon likes the lady loving – his body and mind have completely betrayed his vows and he’s beginning to question at least the no-women aspect of them.  Jon and Ygritte get up to much more bedroom acrobatics – in a sex cave no less!!  Love it.  Can’t wait to see how they film the cave scene – and they better film it!

Dany:

I spoke way too soon about her parts being boring.  This last chapter was overflowing with badassery.  She decides to buy ALL the Unsullied army, plus the future boys waiting to become the Unsullied.  Essentially, she’s wiping out most of the slave trade.  Of course, this comes at a cost and she sells her goods, her ships, and Drogon the dragon.  Oh My.

When she goes to make the exchange, she commands her new army telling them they are hers.  The head slaver dude gets all pissy because Drogon doesn’t want to go with him.  Dany is like – well, duh – he’s no effing slave and then has Drogon char the slaver’s head and whatnot.  Dany uses her men and the Unsullied to destroy the remaining slavers.  Wowsy.  Go Dany.  I do wonder how she’ll be received with a slave army though – on Westeros slaving is a big no-no.  Just ask Jorah.  Also, she has a new handmaiden – a former female slave who she freed, but the girl decides to stick around.  I would too.

Will be amazing on television as long as they have the budget for it.

Sansa:

Sansa finally has her new dress and is super excited to try it on for the first time.  Cersei is with her and Sansa feels like a beautiful woman.  Poor dear.  When they bring in the maiden cloak of House Stark to pin it to her shoulders, she realizes something is awfully amiss.  This is wedding garb.  That’s when they break the news to her that this is actually her wedding dress and she is now on her way to the Sept to marry Tyrion.  Que freak out of the century.

Eventually, Sansa bows to her duties, knowing she is trapped and goes peacefully to her wedding.  Tyrion offers to let her marry Lancel instead, but Sansa is nothing if not obedient and marries Tyrion.  He promised to be good to her.  What a mess.

The wedding feast is a gay affair for everyone but the happy couple.  Sansa wants so much to enjoy her wedding, but Tyrion won’t even dance with her.  Instead, she dances with nearly everyone else and Joff promises to make her his whore.  Good times.  Sansa notices how the Tyrells have completely ditched her.  Fickle friends, that lot.

When it comes time for the bedding ceremonies, Tyrion cancels them by pretending to be much drunker than he is and manhandling Sansa back to the wedding quarters.  All for show.  He yet again assures Sansa he’ll be good to her, but they must consummate the marriage whether either one of them wants to or not.  Sansa, like a wounded puppy, disrobes and stands before him shaking.  Despite his best efforts, Tyrion is drowning in desire.  This is one of the hardest scenes I’ve had to read.  Both naked, they climb into bed – Tyrion tries to reassure Sansa, but he knows she detests the way he looks.  Eventually, he sits back and tells her they won’t lie together – that he’ll wait until she desires him.  Sansa pretty much lets him know that will never happen.  Tyrion is very, very wounded.

Heartbreaking.  With the actress who plays Sansa so young, I doubt this scene will involve any nudity on screen.  But it has the potential to be devastatingly amazing.

Arya:

Still nothing happening.  The weird little band find themselves at a sizable town where they stop at the friendly local brothel.  Arya is scrubbed clean again and put in lace.  I find a lot of humor in these moments.  Gendry is acting a bit strange towards her – I think he has a crush, but I’ve been wrong before.

At the end of the chapter, a group of men arrive with a captive they pronounce as a Lannister.  People think it’s Jaime, but when Arya sees him she knows it’s not the Kingslayer, but the man’s identity makes her wickedly happy.  We’ll find out next chapter.

Jon:

Nothing too exciting.  They are trying to go over the wall.  Several men fall to their deaths, but eventually the rest make it to the top, including Jon and Ygritte.  Ygritte cries because they apparently wakened all those white walkers looking for some magical horn to bring down the Wall, never found it, and so now have loosed evil on the world for naught.  She hates the bloody wall.

Should film well.  I miss Ghost.  You know, they’ll probably try to put Jon in some kind of peril for these scenes.  Up the tension factor a bit.

A Storm of Swords Journal – Part 5 (SPOILERS)

Pages 235-293

Jaime:

Continuing on their journey to Kings Landing, Brienne, Jaime, and Cleros run into some trouble in what appears to be a deserted town.  An archer sends arrows their way killing Cleros and injuring Brienne…not that she shows any sign of pain.  Jaime takes Cleros’s sword and begins a half-assed swordfight with Brienne.  Both hold their own for a long while, but Jaime quickly tires.  Eventually, they are pretty much wrestling in the stream.  Brienne is winning when they hear laughter from the shore.

The Brave Companions or some such nonsense – those randy bandits now serving under Roose Bolton and declared for House Stark – take them hostage back to Vargo (I think that’s his name).  Brienne has lots of raping to look forward to and Jaime will see pain.  Jaime determinedly tries to convince the men to take him to his father in return for gold unharmed.  He also helps Brienne by saying her homeland has many riches as well.  This promises to keep them alive, but Brienne is dragged off to endure gods know what and Jaime ends the chapter with a scream.  I can only assume the ‘message’ Vargo wants to send Tywin is a severed portion of the Kingslayer’s body.

Another interesting chapter tidbit – Jaime wants to marry Cersei and even considers marrying Joff to his sister, Myrcella.  Um…yuck for the thousandth time.

Arya:

Not much happens here.  The group of travelers are still searching for Ser Beric and visit many people.  One of them includes a woman who lives in the trees – literally.  They eventually wind up at Lady Smallwood’s small castle and are treated quite kindly.  Lady Smallwood bathes Arya and makes her don a dress again.  Gendry laughs at her, but then they wrestle outside and Arya rips her dress and dirties it all up.  She’s still a little wild one.

What I took away from this chapter was a sense of safety for Arya.  I can finally believe no one among this group means her any harm – just want to use her for ransom.  They could have sold her off or killed her a thousand times over again.  I’m glad she’s okay.

Not a lot happening, but a fun scene I hope they add to the show.

Danaerys:

Dany has convinced her ship to take her to Ghis where she meets with the head slaver of the Unsullied army.  I’m guessing he’s the head, not really sure.  He’s disgusting, though.  He tells Dany about the Unsullied and insults her a great deal in a tongue he believes she doesn’t understand while the interpreter says nicer things.  Dany hears all and is pretty much appalled at how the Unsullied have been trained.  They kill babes and pups to prove loyalty!  Oh my.  She leaves the slaver with a bad taste in her mouth.

Back on ship, she slaps Jorah.  She’s still reeling from his kiss.  She thinks it was terrible behavior, but it awoken her desire for sex again and makes her miss Drogo.  There’s even a masturbation flashback in which her handmaid, Irri, helps her out.  The boys will love that scene.  Dany knows she must hire an army despite how much she despises these people.

Her dragons hate being trapped beneath the deck.  Not much else to say.  Dany’s story is really boring me these days.  I miss Drogo almost as much as her.

Bran:

Bran, Hodor, Jojen, and Meera are still traveling through the wilds towards the Wall.  They spend the night in a cave with a man who warms them the Wall isn’t such a great place since word reached about the attack beyond the Wall.  Everyone is tired, hungry, and bored.  Bran misses his old life and the people in it.  Meera tells a story about a would-be knight who beat all the odds to seek revenge.  I’m sure I was supposed to learn something here, but not sure what.  Honestly, a boring chapter.  Nothing happens and the plot was not furthered.  Do we really need to check in with Bran to learn nothing?  I guess we can take away the fact that none of the rural Northern men are bothering them.  They seem like a nice, civil, slightly wild bunch.

Davos:

Davos is locked in the dungeon, but he’s warm and has been nursed back to health.  Melisandre comes to visit him, assuring him that no one betrayed him – she just saw his intentions to kill her in the fire.  They have a long, rather boring discussion about fire, light, and the one god.  Blah, blah, blah.

Next, the Florent who was serving as Stannis’s Hand is brought down to the dungeon to join Davos as a traitor.  Apparently, he was secretly trying to broker a deal with Tywin to marry Stannis’ daughter to Tommen Lannister, make Stannis Lord of Dragonstone and Storms End – as long as Stannis would stop the king nonsense and pledge fealty to Joff.  They didn’t like that so well.  As Davos explained, Stannis is no quitter and wouldn’t marry his daughter off to a product of incest.  The Florent sobbed.

I hate Melisandre and wish she would die in her fire.

A Storm of Swords Journal – Part 4 (SPOILERS)

Happy Friday everyone!!!

Pages 181-234

Sansa:

Sansa’s getting a new gown!  She’s grown three inches and has boobs now!  The Tyrell women are treating her like family and she’s happy to have female companionship again.  I’m pretty sure she can’t trust these women, but she’s starving for some happiness.  Sansa believes the little women are fools to be so happy in the lion’s den.

Margaery takes her hawking telling her how much she’ll love Willas and calling her sister.  Sansa begs her not to marry the cruel Joffrey.  Margaery assures her that her brother will protect her.  Sansa knows better and thinks Margaery should know better as well.

Sansa has sad little daydreams of how happy her life with Willas will be – who’s the fool now, Sansa?  She tells Dontos she won’t need his services any longer.  He beseechers her to reconsider, knowing that the Tyrells aren’t to be trusted and are only after her for her claim to the Stark household.  She is heir now behind Robb since everyone thinks Bran and Rickon are dead.

Sansa stays lost in her daydreams.  She should have learned better than this.  People are going to hate her even more now if she goes on likes this in season 3.

Arya:

As I suspected, Arya’s been betrayed.  Harwin (I think that was his name) no longer claims allegiance to the Stark family, but rather to Ser Beric and the smallfolk.  Arya realizes this when she notices that they aren’t marching north, but south.  The tribe of bandits plans to drop her off with Ser Beric to do with as he pleases.  I don’t think they really mean her any harm, but they aren’t loyal to who she needs them to be loyal to.  Hot Pie has stayed behind at the Inn to become their baker.

Arya decides to escape and takes off on her horse to no avail.  Harwin eventually catches up to her and swears her no harm again as long as she rides back peacefully.  She agrees, but I have a feeling her little list of names will be longer in her prayers tonight.

I hope they film the horse chase scene.  Will be a romping good time.  Poor Arya just never manages to catch a break.  But I guess that can be said of all the Stark children.

Samwell:

Our first Sam chapter!  Could Sam be a more sympathetic character?  He is terrified of everything, fully admits that he has no business being a Watchmen, and yet, he has no other options.  I do not envy him his life.

Anyway, we find him in the aftermath of the massacre sponsored by the crazy, zombie-ish white walkers.  The Watch was a group of 300, now more like 50 with men dying everyday.  Sam is begging his feet to keep walking, but he’s tired, freezing, hungry, and a scared little boy.  He keeps flashing back to the battle on the Fist.

Basically, the Night’s Guard didn’t stand a chance.  There were hundreds of Others and very little means of killing them.  Only so many fire arrows can be shot.  They had to flee.  Sam was able to perform his one duty – get the ravens off to the Wall with news of the battle.  He almost managed to stay out of the way as commanded.

Now that the men have been beaten and are doing their best to escape the Others, Sam just wants to lay down in the snow and die.  They are still being chased and he sees no point in going on.  He feels he’s done his duty and can die with some sort of honor.  He finally falls down and decides to sleep away his last minutes wrapped in the warmth of the snow blanket.  Grenn and Small Paul find him and ruin his plans.  Small Paul, a giant of sorts, picks him up and carries him a ways.  They fall way behind the other men and eventually Small Paul can no longer handle Sam’s weight.

All of  a sudden, a white walker appears on a white walking horse – dismounts and is ready to kill them.  Small Paul is impaled and Grenn’s torch is beheaded (betorched?) by the walker.  Sam, craven that he claims to be, grabs his dragonglass dagger and rushes the walker, stabbing him only to watch him melt away.  Apparently dragonglass is the only weapon able to destroy these mofos.  Good for Sam.  Grenn convinces him to keep walking.

Not sure how they’ll film this since they’ve already shown the white walkers in season 2 and shown Sam being discovered by them.  The Others didn’t even pay him any attention and Grenn left him behind to die (in the show).  Something to look forward to, I suppose.  This battle would look epic on screen, don’t you think?

Tyrion:

Oh dear.  So the King’s council met and had very interesting discussions.  Tywin is plotting and planning and he’s completely terrifying.  Littlefinger is off to woo Lady Lysa.  Tyrion is now in charge of the money.  Cersei is to marry again – Tywin wants her to choose Willas Tyrell (that’s right – they got wind of the Tyrell plans to wed him to Sansa).  And even Tyrion’s wedding is forefront in Tywin’s mind – to Sansa Stark.  OMG.  The weddings in this series are just as dangerous as the wars.

Another fantastic scene for Peter Dinklage.  I can’t wait to see the look on his face when he is told he’s to wed and bed Lady Sansa.  Wow.

Catelyn:

More fallout from Catelyn decision to release Jaime.  Rickard Karstark and some of his men, men loyal to the North, committed treason by killing Tully guardsmen and slaying two child captives – a Lannister and a Frey.  The rest of the Karstark troops have fled camp in search of the Kingslayer.  Robb is losing his men quickly and running out of options.  His luck in battle might be running out.

Robb makes the hard decision to behead Rickard Karstark – and obviously, he does it himself (Daddy taught him well).  He’s just a 16-year-old manchild.  Can you even imagine?

At the chapter’s end, Jeyne comes to Catelyn worried for her new husband and how the death sentence has affected him.  Catelyn just tells Jeyne to be patient, that Robb will come to her, and oh…she needs to produce some heirs and quickly.  AWKWARD.  Jeyne explains they try several times a day.  Man…thank the gods my mother-in-law and I have never discussed such things.

I do hope we get to see Robb do some beheading in season 3.

A Storm of Swords Journal – Part 3 (SPOILERS)

Pages 120-180

Jaime:

Superb chapter!  Not for anything that happened, but for the backstory we’re given.  Brienne, Cleros, and Jaime arrive at what appears to be an abandoned Inn.  Jaime busts open the door only to be confronted by the new ‘owners’ who have pillaged and taken over.  For the right price, our band of three obtains some provisions, three horses, and some bad advice.  Thank goodness Brienne is smart enough to know when she’s being lied to.  Jaime is respecting her more and more, but still treating her in accord with the douche that he is.

Anyway, when they stop to rest for the night Jaime fills us in on his history – how he became a member of the Kingsguard and whatnot.  Apparently, his father planned to marry him off to Lady Lysa Tully so Cersei (the great disgusting love of his life and twin sister) plotted and schemed to have him become a member of the Kingsguard to avoid the marriage and be hers forever.  Disgusting.  Anyway, it worked, but dear Lord Tywin resigned as Hand of the King and removed himself and Cersei back home.  Jaime was forced to stay behind to protect his King.  So while he might not be married off, he still wasn’t allowed to be with Cersei due to distance.  He was 15 years old.

Then he relived his slaying of King Aerys and his Hand.  He was caught mid-slay, but didn’t really care.  He next sat upon the throne waiting to see who would come to claim it.  Eddard Stark arrived first.

I love learning what makes these characters tick and this just helps explain Jaime so much.  Villain that he is – he’s still one of the most interesting people in all the Realm.  I could totally do without the Cersei love, but can oddly respect Jaime without loving him.  I wonder if the show would ever do a flashback scene – I’d love to see Aerys Targaryen and a young Jaime.

One of the best chapters yet.

Tyrion:

Tyrion’s chapters are always so dense with information and double speak that I’m almost convinced I need to read them twice.  I know I miss things.

This time Tyrion pays a little visit to Lord Varys and learns that everyone has their eye on him just waiting for him to muck up.  Cersei, we also discover, is still using her sexual wiles to get her way.  Tyrion has no friends and a shit ton of enemies.  He wants to see Shae for one last time before he sends her away for her own safety.  A meeting is arranged for later that night in Lord Varys’ chambers.

As Tyrion prepares for their meeting, we can see how deeply he’s fallen for Shae.  He’s like a giddy schoolboy.  Shae doesn’t want to leave, of course, and our giddy schoolboy stupidly grants her her silly wish.  Tyrion thinks with his penis a lot.  I fear that either Shae is bad or bad will happen to Shae – and soon.

What else do we learn?  Shae might be ‘accidentally’ spreading knowledge to the wrong people (which is anyone at this point), so Tyrion has Bronn hunt down the singer she recently spoke with.  Varys is a great little spider.  Tyrion thoroughly searches his chambers and finds NOTHING of importance.  Not even any papers.  Plus, he only has water in his pitcher – SHAME!  Varys has also been hired by Lord Tywin to spy on Tyrion.  I kind of like Varys.

We’ve already seen a version of this scene between Shae and Tyrion at the end of season 2.  I would suspect some gossiping between him and Varys to show up in season 3.

Arya:

Arya, Hot Pie, and Gendry have found a lovely garden by the Trident that has been abandoned.  They are happily stealing vegetables when they hear signing and men approaching.  With nowhere to hide, they confront the men who appear friendly enough, but trust is not something to hand out easily.

Regardless, Arya knows they kind of have to do what the men say since they don’t have a great chance of beating them in a fight.  The men are traveling to a nearby Inn and invite Arya and the boys along (they probably really just want their horses, let’s be honest).  Anyway, off to the Inn they go – the very same Inn we last saw with Jaime and Brienne.

Almost immediately Arya can tell these people are robbers/bandits, but they have yet to do anything wrong towards her.  In fact, they offer her food in exchange for the stolen vegetables.  The men want Arya’s horses and make her a promise – they’ll repay her after the war.  Arya isn’t impressed and instead offers the horses in exchange for the boat left by Brienne outside.  Suddenly, Gendry runs in announcing soldiers approaching.

Arya and Hot Pie immediately jump up to run.  Soldiers mean capture to them, but the bandits stop them despite Arya breaking one of their noses.  She’s a tough cookie.  The soldiers enter and Arya immediately recognizes them as one of the men of Winterfell, Harwin, who used to lead her around on her horse when she was younger.  Arya immediately begins to sob (I almost cried with her, poor thing) and once Harwin notices who she is bends the knee to her and announces her true identity.

What this chapter reminds me of is how fierce, brave, and strong Arya is, but also how young, scared, and vulnerable she  really is in the face the shit that has come her way.  Despite all her bravado, Arya is still a small, young lady all alone with no one to truly count as friend by her side.  I hope that Harwin is a friend.  Please let Harwin be a friend.  But you can’t trust anyone these days.

This scene would give the actress who plays Arya (Maisie?) the chance to shine.  Hope to see it!

Catelyn:

Catelyn is still under castle arrest when Robb arrives back in Riverrun.  Her brother, Edmure, wants nothing to do with her.  She can only hope Robb will forgive her.  He immediately summons her to the Great Hall.  She notices some new people behind him, men and women, who appear to be Lannister Bannermen.  She thinks it odd that he would bring captives in the Hall.

She asks Robb’s forgiveness and he grants her wishes – stating that love can bring about great folly.  Many of the Bannermen treat  her quite icily however.  Catelyn notices that Grey Wind is not beside Robb and thinks it rather odd.  Robb dismisses everyone, but the family and the new people.  Catelyn quickly learns why Robb was so quick to forgive her – he’s married Jeyne Westerling of the Crag.  It’s her family that stands behind him.  This means he’s forsaken the detestable Freys to whom he’d promised to marry a daughter and combine houses.  That’s 3000 Frey soldiers he lost for 50 new Westerling men who are former Lannister lackies and a lesser house than Frey.  Bad military decision.  But Robb is in love and took her virginity – the noble thing to do was wed her.  Jeyne seems nice enough.

Back in private chambers, the family squabbles.  Catelyn learns that Grey Wind doesn’t much like these Westerlings and the Westerlings don’t won’t him around.  This worries Catelyn immediately and she urges Robb to pay attention to his wolf and send away the man Grey Wind particularly hates.  Then they all gang up on Edmure who has been boasting of his  minor defeat against Tywin’s forces.  Robb informs him that he made a huge mistake by distracting Tywin and that Edmure had only been ordered to protect Riverrun.  Edmure’s ‘glorious win’ kept Tywin from heading further west where Robb’s men were waiting to defeat his entire army and allowed Tywin to learn the news of Stannis approaching Kings Landing in time to save the day there.  BAD EDMURE, BAD.  Edmure feels like shit and promises to lead the Van in the next battle.  Robb knows he must regain the Freys if he is to win this war.  Catelyn urges him to first win back Winterfell.

I can’t believe Edmure!  I look forward to this scene next season.  We’ve already seen Robb’s new wife and whatnot so nothing new to film there.  I’m confused about what’s happened at Winterfell and who actually is in charge of the Castle there.  What happened to Theon?  In the book, I thought he was killed.  In the show, he was captured.  We shall see, I suppose.

I do think the new Queen Jeyne is going to cause problems.  Poor Grey Wind – banished to the outside.

Jon:

So, I’m probably just going to squee a lot!  Jon saw the Giants who resemble large gorillas!  They ride mammoths!  An eagle nearly took out his eye!  Tormund kept goading him about Ygritte – almost like ‘Ygritte and Jon sittin’ in a tree…’ Jon blushed a lot.  But Ygritte is after his body and wants to have his babies.  Jon is afraid of her, but a body wants what a body wants.  I know he doesn’t want to father bastard children though – maybe they’ll get married.  I love them.

Mance wants Jon…uh oh.  Mance has discovered Jon lied to him about the Watch’s raider party.  They’ve stumbled across the camp of the Guard where many of the Watchmen have been slaughtered by, we’re assuming, the Others.  Mance is not happy and demands that Jon tell him lots of info and then sends him on a mission to the Wall to betray his Black Brothers even further.  Ygritte helps save him by saying they ‘sleep’ together every night.  So now, Ygritte in very plain words explains that Jon must make this true.  I can’t wait to see what happens underneath Jon’s cloak when they get back to camp!!!

Also, so funny that Jon uses Ghost to scare Ygritte away from his bed.