FIC: "One good thing to come of wishes and hopes" (Davos/Stannis) - ODI ET AMO
George R.R. Martin — 'Surprisingly, Stannis smiled at that. “You're I had the cart before the horse, Davos said. Read more quotes from George R.R. Martin. 4 Quotes by Stannis; 5 Quotes about Stannis; 6 Family; 7 Behind the Scenes His visits were even fewer, and he did his duty in the marriage bed only once or After the siege was lifted by Lord Eddard Stark, Stannis knighted Davos and. If you think Stannis is a jerk to Cressen, think again! The OP is correct. quotes from the chapter as evidence: . happen to think that Cressen was the affectionate one in the relationship, not Stannis), And this time he specifically sent Melisandre with Davos, so I doubt he is unaware of what killed Renly.
Neither sun nor moon shone in the dungeons; no windows pierced the thick stone walls. The only way to tell day from night was by his gaolers. Neither man would speak to him, though he knew they were no mutes; sometimes he heard them exchange a few brusque words as the watch was changing. They would not even tell him their names, so he gave them names of his own. The short strong one he called Porridge, the stooped sallow one Lamprey, for the pie. He marked the passage of days by the meals they brought, and by the changing of the torches in the sconce outside his cell.
A man grows lonely in the dark, and hungers for the sound of a human voice. Davos would talk to the gaolers whenever they came to his cell, whether to bring him food or change his slops pail. He knew they would be deaf to pleas for freedom or mercy; instead he asked them questions, hoping perhaps one day one might answer.
Do ships still sail the narrow sea? They are keeping me alive, for some purpose of their own. He did not like to think what that might be. I should have given myself to the sea, Davos thought as he sat staring at the torch beyond the bars. Or let the sail pass me by, to perish on my rock.
I would sooner feed crabs than flames. When Aristotle argued that man is a political animal, he pointed to the fact that nature gave humans speech, which allows them both to form cooperative communities and to communicate moral concepts necessary for the functioning of a city-state.
Without that specific purpose, Davos succumbs to desire, mentally returning to the rock he began to the book on. Melisandre Melisandre arrives in the narrative in a fashion that immediately evokes the themes established in the outside of the chapter, making it clear from the outset that she is implicated in the metaphor: Then one night as he was finishing his supper, Davos felt a queer flush come over him.
He glanced up through the bars, and there she stood in shimmering scarlet with her great ruby at her throat, her red eyes gleaming as bright as the torch that bathed her. I lack for them. This initial exchange sets up many of the themes of the dialogue: Davos is described as a man on the mend, who has salvaged himself from the shipwreck of his life and will rebound to more than he was before, but also as a man who is in want, who has a void in his life caused by the death of his sons and is looking to fill it up with a renewed commitment to his king.
At the same time, Melisandre is simultaneously a participant in the debate, the subject of the debate since no small part of it will revolve around who she is and what she wants, and an Inquisitorial judge whose will can send men to a fiery death.
Thus, despite the fact that Melisandre has all the power here, she has to justify herself to the prisoner: Her strange red eyes studied him through the bars. A dark place, and foul. The good sun does not shine here, nor the bright moon. Shall I put it out? I will not beg her. We were made for a single purpose—to keep the darkness at bay. Do you believe that? On the face of it, she is genuinely threatening here: This builds towards an exchange where Davos sets forward his thesis about Melisandre and she, taking up the Socratic position for a change, tries to knock down his thesis: It might well kill him.
May the Seven protect me. Why cling to these false gods? As well say it was so yesterday. Indeed, this blatant come-on really leans into the witch-as-temptress trope — the original Circe, Nimue and Morgause and Morgan Le Fay from Arthurian myth, Lilith from the Babylonian Talmud, the Whore of Babylon from the Book of Revelations, and so on — who seek to seduce men, lead them from the true path of virtue and approved sex roles, and make use of their seed in this case, quite literally to pervert nature and perform evil magic.
Or is Melisandre a warrior for the lord? The brightest flame casts the darkest shadows. Or is Melisandre something in between, at the same time a true believer and a pragmatist? We see this in her discussion of Guncer Sunglass, which she reduces to spiritual might making right.
And to me, this is what differentiates between Melisandre the villain and Melisandre the anti-villain, in that Melisandre uses evil means for good ends, both in the past the shadow assassins and now as we will see with Edric Storm. Open your eyes, ser knight. The truth is all around you, plain to behold. The night is dark and full of terrors, the day bright and beautiful and full of hope. One is black, the other white.
There is ice and there is fire. Not seven, not one, not a hundred or a thousand. Do you think I crossed half the world to put yet another vain king on yet another empty throne?
The war has been waged since time began, and before it is done, all men must choose where they will stand. Ours is not a choice between Baratheon and Lannister, between Greyjoy and Stark. It is death we choose, or life. The great ruby at her throat seemed to pulse with its own radiance. Or is it black and cold and full of worms? This theory imbues individual moral decisions with universal significance, for their choice might decide victory for either host on the field of Armageddon.
On the one hand, much of her justification for her actions flows from the existential stakes of the metaphysical war hovering over the secular war: More on this later.
On the other hand, Melisandre is also acting as an Inquisitor, assessing which side Davos is on: The good knight is honest to the last, even in his day of darkness. It is well you did not lie to me. I would have known. The red woman laughed. I saw your purpose in my flames. Those were no fires of mine. Had I been with you, your battle would have had a different ending. But His Grace was surrounded by unbelievers, and his pride proved stronger than his faith. His punishment was grievous, but he has learned from his mistake.
Davos felt his mouth tighten. Notably, Melisandre sees herself not merely as the passive recipient of prophecy, but as someone who can reshape destiny through her actions. Indeed, it is his ordinary humanity that allows Davos to hold his ground even as he gradually relinquishes blaming Melisandre for the fire: The Messiah or a Naughty Boy? The dialogue between Davos and Melisandre ends with a discussion of the person they are ultimately fighting over — Stannis Baratheon — and their competing conceptions of his identity and purpose: The war continues, Davos Seaworth, and some will soon learn that even an ember in the ashes can still ignite a great blaze.
The old maester looked at Stannis and saw only a man. You see a king. You are both wrong. I have seen him leading the fight against the dark, I have seen it in the flames.
Stannis and the Covert King
The flames do not lie, else you would not be here. It is written in prophecy as well. When the red star bleeds and the darkness gathers, Azor Ahai shall be born again amidst smoke and salt to wake dragons out of stone. The bleeding star has come and gone, and Dragonstone is the place of smoke and salt.
Stannis and the Covert King | Meditations on A Song of Ice and Fire
Stannis Baratheon is Azor Ahai reborn! I shall leave you here to think on all that I have told you. Only her scent lingered after. That, and the torch. Davos lowered himself to the floor of the cell and wrapped his arms about his knees. The shifting torchlight washed over him. The flames do not lie. However, I do think we get the unvarnished truth when it comes to how she views Davos. And this too has to be added to whether we view Melisandre as a villain, because her merciful attitude towards Davos will continue even after he opposes her on Edric Storm.
But as for Davos, what conclusions does he come to at the end of their dialogue? Ice and fire, he thought. Davos could not deny the power of her god. She saw my purpose in her flames. It was good to learn that Salla had not sold him, but the thought of the red woman spying out his secrets with her fires disquieted him more than he could say.
And what did she mean when she said that I had served her god and would serve him again? He did not like that either. What is duty and what is treason? How should an officer of the state balance their private interest against the general good?
The ultimate question is, did she tell Stannis? Yes, as the remainder of this entry will show. However we readers know that Stannis had a wildcard in the form of Melisandre all along. Thus his apparent cavalier attitude actually concealed a well-crafted plan. Stannis has much the same attitude during his approach to Winterfell. You would be right. However, when Stannis set out for Deepwood Motte, he must have already been wondering how he would take Winterfell. He must have realized the immense challenge that lay before him and pondered the reality of his situation.
How would he take that castle? What was his end-game, should he have actually marched up to the gates of Winterfell? He does this again in Deepwood Motte when he declares that they will march against Winterfell and reclaim it or die trying. Once again, we readers are led to believe that Stannis is attempting something that seems ludicrous and without a strong plan to back it up.
His councilors all advised conventional tactics for taking the castle. This is despite the fact that Stannis had all but made his choice prior to the parley. None of the lords who attend Stannis at his parley with Cortnay Penrose really offer anything of substantial value with regard to strategy.
Melisandre has seen it in the flames of the future. His death and the manner of it. Similar to the parley with Penrose, Stannis is stoic, quiet and seems rather predetermined. He used someone with specialized, proven knowledge of how to infiltrate the castle. It was this specialized knowledge that made Davos ideal for the task. Similarly, Mance has specialized knowledge of how to infiltrate Winterfell incognito. Like Davos, he has done it in the past on at least one notable occasion.
Although incapable of shadow assassins, Mance could aid in taking Winterfell without a siege. The mission was of the utmost secrecy. The king gave a curt nod. No one must know what you do. The secrecy was required because he knew there would be political backlash had his ethically-questionable method been revealed. She explains it is because powerful magical wards have been woven into the walls.
This is of interest because it means that Melisandre would have to be inside the walls before she could use any of her supernatural abilities —like the shadow assassins— to kill the Boltons.
Since there are no known secret entrances to Winterfell, smuggling the red priestess inside Winterfell is unlikely. Stannis would need to rely on some other trick. Mance has extensive knowledge of the north beyond the wall.
He has fought the Others. And he had the Horn of Joramun and did not blow it. He did not bring down the Wall when he could have. Stannis had remained unmoved.
He spent a great deal of time exploring in search of the Horn of Joramun. His knowledge is almost second to none. I mean to wed my Lord of Winterfell to this wildling princess.
Whoever weds her had best be prepared to climb in her tower window and carry her off at swordpoint. If you force her to marry a man she does not want, she is like to slit his throat on their wedding night.