A Dance with Dragons-Chapter 29

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A Dance with Dragons chapter
POV Davos
Page {{{page}}} UK HC (Other versions)
Chapter chronology (All)
Jon VI  ← {{{current}}} →  Daenerys V


Davos, still imprisoned in White Harbor, is awaiting his death and hopes that he will at least earn and honourable death losing his head first and not his hands. He passes his time chatting to the guards, gaining a few favours in terms of candles, books, paper & a quill, as well as learning a little more information about the general history of the north. Davos writes a few letters to his sons to be delivered upon his death. It is then that Robett Glover appears at his door and politely asks him to follow, Davos is wary but notes his mannerisms and follows.

He is led through secret hallways always going in different directions, passing the old godswood on the way. Eventually they end up in a room where Lord Wyman Manderly is waiting for him. He declines the offers of food and wine, Lord Wyman though, apologizes for his poor treatment of Davos. Wyman tells him that they must talk fast, as the Freys wait above, to which Davos can hear the sounds of music and chatter above. Lord Wyman says that they must act quickly for Davos is "dead", hid head sits upon the Seal Gate. A criminal and his head were put in place of Davos. He then learns that Lord Wyman Manderly only plays along with the Freys because he has to, as his son Wylis Manderly is being held hostage, though he drinks for his safe return.

Davos says he was quite convinced by Wyman's daughters behaviours, though he was confused by Wylla Manderly. Wyman responds that his young granddaughter was extremely brave to have said those things. There were truths in her words as the debt the Manderlys owe the Starks and Winterfell can never be repaid. He adds though that he cannot show any sign of contempt to King's Landing for fear of the harm they might do to his son. Tywin Lannister told Wyman that he must confess his treason, yield White Harbor, declare his loyalty to Tommen Lannister, and bend his knee to Roose Bolton. If he refused Wylis would be killed as a traitor, and White Harbor would be sacked. If he complied though. his son would be released. By "killing" Davos, he has assured the release of Wylis, to which Davos replied was a brave thing to do as well.

Wyman adds his rage at his son Wendel Manderly's death at the hands of the Freys, calling it murder. He tells Davos that the North remembers and his son is home, meaning that his act for the Freys is almost over as well.

He then summons Theon's mute squire Wex. Davos is told that by Robett that Theon was captured and not slain at Winterfell, and is currently being flayed by the Boltons. He adds that all the women as well were captured and marched away. Davos listens to the horrible things that Ramsay Bolton does to the captured women, sending them naked into the woods with half a days head start before he hunts them down with his dogs. If they are caught they are raped, flayed, their corpses fed to his dogs, while their skins adorn the Dreadfort. If he considered them good sport, he slits their throats before he flays them, otherwise it is the other way around.

Robett tells a stunned Davos that the evil is in his blood, sired from rape, Wyman adding that the Freys are no better than Ramsay. He also says to Davos that Roose lies and played a darker part in the Red Wedding than he has admitted. In addition, Davos is told that the Boltons know the northmen are not expected to believe their lies but will be forced to admit them or else die as well.

He tells Davos about the mighty fleet he has built up, that he saw when he entered the port. Furthermore he has plenty of silver in his vaults and has more heavy horse than anyone else north of The Neck. Wyman states that Oldcastle and Widow's Watch will follow his lead, all of the lands east of the White Knife, from Widow’s Watch and Ramsgate to the Sheepshead Hills and the headwaters of the Broken Branch will be pledged to Stannis Baratheon if Davos meets his one price. He says he does not need a king but a smuggler. He needs Davos to smuggle home Rickon, his true liege, and one who holds a stronger claim than Arya.

The true story about what happened at Winterfell comes out then, Wex hid in the godswood, and Rodrik Cassel was murdered by Ramsay Bolton. Wex also says that six survived the siege, the sons of Winterfell. Four of the people went north and two went another. Wyman asks Wex to show them where they went and he throws the dagger at the spot on the map. Davos looks long at where the dagger has landed, pondering whether it would be better to go back to the dungeons and eat porridge for breakfast as it is better than places where men break fast upon human flesh instead.