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A Clash of Kings  (A Song of Ice and Fire, #2)
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A Clash of Kings > 12/06/15 - Chapter 68: Jon VIII

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Clara 1-Qhorin told Jon to make fire, and he knew it meant their end was near. What a way to start a chapter. Jon wonders if Ghost will howl for him when he dies like Summer howled for Bran when he fell. Interesting he wonders if the other wolves will howl too.

2-The comment Qhorin said about the maid and the fire caught Jon’s attention, and he wondered if he was ever married or with a woman, but he doesn’t know. We don’t know much of Qhorin, but I came to like him. Also, that fucking eagle was still around, and I hate it so much I don’t have words.

3-Only two of the five remain, Dalbridge died, they heard the horns. Qhorin sent Ebben to Mormont, to tell what was going on. Ebben thought Jon should go, but Qhorin said he had another role to play. This made me think he knew from the beggining what would happen. Stonesnake was later sent to Mormont as well, they had to kill his mare, and they couldn’t ride double. Interesting Qhorin said to Stonesnake to tell Momont what Jon saw, and the trees have eyes again. I forgot he said so, and I forgot what happened to Stonesnake.

4-Jon had no dreams at night, he thought note ven dreams could live there, how curious he thought so. Qhorin asked Jon if his sword was sharp, Jon said yes, and then they said the vow together. I really like this vow, I wonder how the one of the Kingsguard goes. Jon asked his father’s god to die bravely. I was so scared for him!

5-Qhorin told Jon to yield if they get captured, to become one of them but remember who he is, and mostly, watch. It was a hard thing to ask, and Jon did not want to be an oathbreaker. The fact he asked Qhorin to tell Mormont next time he sees it he didn’t breake his oath made me think he really cared what Mormont thought of him. The way Qhorin replied made me think he knew what would happen at this point.

6-Qhorin decided to go back, and Jon really hoped this plan work, he didn’t want to break his oath. I found quite interesting Qhorin knew about the curtain of water they went through because of a story he heard when he was about Jon’s age.

7-Jon had a nightmare while they were there, he saw the dead walking and the caslte burn again. They walk through a stony path, and that goddamn eagle was waiting outside. There were also 14 wildling and 8 dogs, which is a lot for two men and a direwolf. Rattleshirt appears, he wears a lot of bones of him, from the ones of men and giants, which I didn’t remember. He said he was Lord of Bones to the Watch. I guess he used the Lord mocking them.

8-Despite the number, they had the advantage to be in a high point, and the wildlings could only get to them two at the time. They knew so, and told them to fight. A woman showed them Ebben’s head, and told them he died brave, and I really like she said so. Rattleshit said he died anyway, I don’t like him at all. Jon yielded, and Qhorin told him to go with them. Ygritte was there, she was an archer, and asked for Jon’s life, saying he let her live. Good choice he had of not killing her.

9-Ygritte also tells Jon the fucking eagle hates him because he was a man before, and Jon killed him. Jon said he didn’t know, which was true. A woman said to prove he was no craven, he told Jon to kill Qhorin. They start to fight, Ghost attacked Qhorin and Jon got the chance to kill him. Only the point of his sword was with blood. Aw, Jon knelt beside him. Qhorin said sharp one more time, and Jon realised he knew what would happen, what would the wildlings ask Jon to do. I have to say, Qhorin is so brave, and really a good and faithful man of the Watch. Not all of them would have died so another could watch the wildlings. Jon asked himself what he is now, and who he is. This must have been really, really hard for him to do.

10-Ygritte said his name, Jon just couldn’t talk, and she defended him. The way they settled things were quite new for Jon, and he thought they were free folk indeed. Rattleshirt said Jon was a warg and a crow. I can understand why he said Jon is a crow, but I wonder how he knows he is a warg. Maybe it is explained later and I don’t remember it.

11-They burnt Qhorin, and Rattleshirt took his bones like he said he would, and Ygritte got his cloak. Finally, Ygritte tells Jon Mance was marching for the Wall. What a way to end this chapter!


Vicki Kalb | 310 comments Your point 3, I forgot what happens to Stonesnake too. And I never thought I'd say this, but that eagle is an asshole.

Your point 10, I think wargs are common to the wildlings and seeing Ghost helping Jon probably was proof of that. What kind of direwolf just hangs around a man and helps him hunt like a dog unless you are a warg?

1. Qhorin, who never lets them build fires, is letting them build one now, and Jon knows this can’t be good. Jon is sure he’s going to die, and wonders if Ghost will howl for him as Summer howled for Bran when he fell. :(

2. It’s just Qhorin and Jon left; Qhorin sent off the other brothers. The eagle keeps stalking them. I didn’t realize Qhorin could’ve sent Jon away instead of Ebben, but he tells Ebben Jon has a different part to play. *SPOILER FOR DANCE WITH DRAGONS* (view spoiler)

3. Oh that’s gross...they ate raw strips of horse meat to keep strong. I suppose it’s either that or starve. Haha, they are like the Dothraki now!

4. I forgot Qhorin sent Stonesnake to go back to Mormont to tell him the “old powers” are waking. Jon doesn’t think he’ll make it, though. I don’t think he ever does.

5. At the fire, Qhorin has Jon recite the Night’s Watch creed with him again. Curious. I like what Qhorin says here: “...if the Wall should ever fall, all the fires will go out.” It’s interesting how a wall of ice protects the fires, which I’m assuming is generalized to mean all hearths in every home, lanterns, etc. The life of a man depends on fire to survive.

6. Now Qhorin commands Jon to break his vow in order to get in with the wildlings, that’s the only way to get them to trust him. Jon at first refuses to break his vow but Qhorin says to do it so he can learn from them. Find out what they’re planning. Be a spy, basically. Qhorin commands him not to balk, do everything that is asked of him, anything. Lol, it’s like he’s a secret agent now. And when he gets a chance to steal away, tell Lord Commander Mormont everything he learned. Jon agrees, and asks Qhorin to tell Mormont he never broke his oath. I don’t think Qhorin expects to go home, but he says he will. Jon takes his oath very seriously. He definitely is a Stark.

7. They’re on their way back to the Fist, leaving the fire behind to draw the wildlings toward it, and hide in a crook in the mountains. Probably to stay away from the eagle. It is misty in here, and they move through a falling water, too. The shock of the cold made me shiver! Being soaked in freezing water is not fun. Qhorin says through here there is a way through the heart of the mountains, and if they haven’t found them by tomorrow morning they will press on. Jon is glad for Ghost’s warmth at night.

8. Very interesting that Jon dreams of burning castles and dead men rising from their graves. It makes me wonder if he’s dreaming of the crypts of Winterfell again, and that the Others turn all the Stark kings and lords into wights. That would really suck to see the bones of your ancestors come to kill you.

9. The next morning they move farther on down into the mountain range using torches Qhorin made earlier. Unfortunately, when they reach the other side hours later the eagle is there, waiting for them. Seems the wildlings also know about that secret passageway. Why wouldn’t they? This is their land. Now they make their stand. They are being hunted.

10. Here come the wildlings, with hounds more wolf than dog. There are fourteen in total and eight hounds. This will be Jon’s first real fight.

11. I wonder why the wildlings don’t mine or smelt their own weapons and armor? It doesn’t seem too advanced in technology for even them to do.

12. Their leader approaches, wearing the bones of huge beasts for armor. Qhorin calls him Rattleshirt, makes sense. He’s a famous wildling among the rangers. Rattleshirt calls himself The Lord of Bones. Qhorin insults him, calling him a dog. Rattleshirt throws insults back.

13. Look up byrnie: a coat of mail; hauberk.

14. One of the spearwives shows them Ebben’s head; so he never made it back. :( It gets really weird how one taunts Jon by showing him one of her boobs and calls him a babe. Qhorin says they mean to shame them into running out in anger and reminds him of his orders. Before they begin to flush them out, Jon shouts he yields and comes out. Qhorin follows, making a show for them, calling Jon a turncloak and a bastard craven. Rattleshirt says he won’t take cravens but Ygritte comes forward and says he’s no craven; he’s the one who captured and spared her. She says to let him live.

15. The eagle is angry. Ygritte says he was a man, until Jon killed him. Jon more or less apologizes and says she told him Mance would take him. Ygritte stands by what she said, but another spearwife says to let him prove he’s a turncloak first. Rattleshirt tells him to kill Qhorin. Before Jon can do anything, Qhorin plays the part, threatening he’ll be glad to kill Jon Snow the traitor and comes right at him. He has no choice but to defend himself. Qhorin gives him a good fight, not making it easy. Finally he pierces his throat and Qhorin falls.

16. Jon feels awful, understandable, but he realizes now that Qhorin knew this would happen, so really it’s no betrayal. Jon is just following orders; he must not balk. Jon wonders who he is now. He killed a brother of the Night’s Watch. But now he’s in to play spy.

17. Ygritte tells her people he’s Jon Snow, bastard of Lord Eddard Stark of Winterfell. Some approve of him, but others don’t. Rattleshirt still wants him dead and another says he only proved he can betray his brothers. Rattleshirt says he’s angry that Jon Snow killed Qhorin Halfhand before he could. He calls Jon a warg, too. He can’t be trusted. Seems this guy wants any excuse to kill him. But the majority rules. They’ll let him live, for now, if at least to let Mance decide.

18. They wisely burn Qhorin’s body right then and there. Rattleshirt keeps some of his bones and the rest throw dice to see who gets what from Qhorin’s possessions. How horrible it must feel to be Jon right now. Ygritte gets his cloak.

19. When Jon asks if they’re going back through the mountains again Ygritte says no, they’re not there anymore. Mance is coming down the Milkwater, toward the Wall. She looks sad when she says this, interesting. When I first read this I thought she sympathized with him, but now I think I know why she’s sad.

And that concludes Jon’s chapter in the second book of ASOIAF! The bloody bastard made it out alive!


Clara I hate the eagle so much! And you are right about why Rattleshirt new he was a warg, I think I got used to the wolves being around I didn't think of it.

*SPOILER FOR DANCE WITH DRAGONS* (view spoiler)


Vicki Kalb | 310 comments I don't think Qhorin hated wildlings either. I think he respected them and knew there were a few bad ones in the entire group, but I think his main priority was to find out what they're doing IF the wildlings intend to infiltrate the Seven Kingdoms. As a brother of the Night's Watch, he is obligated not to let that happen. *SPOILER FOR DANCE WITH DRAGONS* (view spoiler) But you're right; we don't know much about him, except that he's dead now. :(


Clara Yes exactly, if they were attacking, he would attack them too. And about your spoiler, I think he would too. It's sad he's dead though, he was a good man after all.


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