Game of Thrones Recap S4E8: The Mountain and the Viper

Under the cover of night, the tavern is full and the wenches are have a good old time. But Gilly is not enjoying herself in Moletown. She keeps her head down, as one of the wenches tells her to keep her baby quiet, Gilly warns her to never touch the baby. Gilly shuts her up when she hears the bird calls. She knows the sound all too well, the wench thinks its just owls, but Gilly knows differently. The wildlings have come, and they’re slaughtering the town. Ygritte is among them and she shows no mercy as they skewer people upon their swords. They enter Gilly’s tavern, and Ygritte runs through the lead wench. She looks around for signs of others and sees Gilly hiding with her baby, and signals her to be quiet, but leaves the pair in peace. Bless her savage little heart.

Sam worries over Gilly, blaming himself for her death. They knew the wildings were loose nearby killing villages and he put her in harm way. Grenn is upset over the fact that they’re sitting on their hands while the people around them are slaughtered, that their fellow brothers were slaughtered in Moletown. Tollett points out that the brothers broke the rules, and they shouldn’t have been there. Grenn and Tollett tries to comfort Sam, Gilly is a smart resourceful girl. She survived Crasters, the long march to the wall and a whitewalker, so its possible that she got out or was able to hide herself. Jon knows that with Molestown having fallen they’ll be next. Mance’s army must be close by. Their forces have little numbers, only 102 left, and they’ll be greatly overrun if the rest of the wildings descend upon them. Tollett asks that the last brother alive burn all the rest. If he dies, he doesn’t want to come back.

It’s a hot time in Meereen. Some of the Unsully bath and splash about in the river. Grey Worm emerges from underwater like a sleek sexy alligator and gets an eyeful of Missandei. He can’t take his eyes off her as she washes her clothes nude. She rises uncomfortable and covers herself. He slips away. Missandei tells Daenerys about her encounter. The Dothraki are much less body conscious and celebrate nudity, but Missandei is not Dothraki. Dany doesn’t think that the Unsully are interested in what lies beneath their clothing, but Missandei knows that he was interested. Dany wonders what bits were taken, and which remain for Grey Worm, and Missandei admits she wonders too.  Grey Worm catches up to Missandei alone to apologize for his leering, but she doesn’t accept it. No harm no foul. He speaks to her in the common tongue calling her precious, but she didn’t teach him that word. He’s learned much from another as well. She asks him about before he was Unsully, but he does not remember it. Missandei is sorry for what was done to him, but Grey Worm is not. If he was never cut then he wouldn’t be Unsully, he would not become under Dany’s rule, or become her general, or have met Missandei. He apologizes again for today. Missandei tells him that she is glad that he saw her, and he is too.

Ramsay Snow dresses his little Reek up like the fine lord that he once was. He prepares Theon to go to the Iron Borne. He looks like a Lord, formidable and proud, but he is not that any longer, he is nothing more than Reek. Ramsay sends him into Moat Caitlin alone upon his horse. Theon rides past the fallen bodies to the gates. The guard asks for his name and allows the Trojan horse in. Theon comes face to face with Kelling, who is the commander. He doesn’t believe Theon is  who he says. Theon goes over his pedigree, convincing Kelling. Kelling wonders why he rides with a Bolton army. Theon tells Kelling that Bolton has been good to him, that he took him in and treated him right, and now he is offering the Iron borne the same, knowing that they are fading. Open the gates, and the Boltons will provide them with safe passage. Theon tells him that there is no shame in surrendering, that he watched his own father do the same, to bend his knee to Robert Baratheon. Though Kelling can barely stand he spits blood upon his prince, calling him a whipped dog and alluding that he’s a woman. He proclaims that the Iron Borne will not surrender. Theon begins to crumble when one of Kelling’s men brains him. He asks if they yield they will live, and Theon tells him to raise the white flag. His surrender gives him freedom from life. He’s flayed by the Bolton bastard in the name of tradition. Reek is left shaken and wishes to go home.

The Elders interrogate Baelish about his pedigree. His family came from Braavos long ago, but Littlefinger points out that all of the great families came from somewhere originally. The Elders of the Veil’s families came thousands of years ago, and fought their way to the talk.  Lysa told Littlefinger much about her Elders, but Lord Royce did  not need to hear anything from Lysa, they’ve heard enough of his whoring and Lannister bootlicking. And they were leery when they heard that Littlefinger was smelling around Lysa. Littlefinger points out that he and Lysa have know eachother for a long time that she had invited him, a point none of the Elders like, but are well aware of. Lady Lysa’s affairs are her own business, but her death is theirs. Her suicide shattered them all Littlefinger says. But the Elders do not think she would willingly leave her child that she had fawned over for so long. And his quick marriage to Lysa brings further questions. Littlefinger points out she was always prone to melancholy, that she wasn’t meant for a world as brutal as theirs. The Elders wish to speak with the other witness, his simple neice. Little finger wishes to fetch her, but they’ve already done so. They bring in “Aelaine” and ask what she saw. Sansa turns to Littlefinger and apologizes but says that she has to tell the truth. Aelaine reveals that she is Sansa Stark, and on her reveal Lord Royce becomes enraged over Littlefinger’s lies. But Littlefinger was only protecting her she tells the Elders. She was tortured by Joffery, tormented by Cersei and married off to Tyrion. Littlefinger was her only friend in King’s Landing, and he did everything he could to set her free, to smuggle her away to safety. He brought her to the Eyrie, but they feared the Lannister’s reach. They promise her that her secret is safe, that she is safe. They ask what happened to her aunt. She was a troubled woman. Lysa had loved Baelish from the time she first saw him. She never loved Lord Arryn, only did her family duty. And when she was finally free of him, when she was finally able to marry Littlefinger she did so gleefully, but she always feared he would leave her for another woman. Then she saw Littlefinger kiss Sansa on the cheek, a peck on the cheek nothing more. Littlefinger is her uncle by marriage, and he was always so kind to her. Her aunt turned on her called her a whore, and tried to throw her through the moon door. Littlefinger stopped her and she hit him, stepping towards the doors herself. If she couldn’t have Littlefinger she didn’t want to live, and she threw herself though the doors before they could stop her. Sansa finishes her story in tears, so the little bird learned to lie. The woman Elder goes to her to comfort her, telling her not to blame herself, and Littlefinger is just a smidge impressed.

Lord Royce says that you could tell something was wrong with Lyssa by the way she still fed her child from her teat. The Elders no longer think Littlefinger is to blame for her death, and there will be no retribution for it, not for her, but Littlefinger wants to use her power, and go to war. The Lannisters are not supported by the Lords of the Veil, but by staying out of the fray they have give the Lannisters free reign, and none have been able to stand against them. Rob Stark is dead, so there is none to back the Elders believe. Littlefinger would have them back Robin Arryn. He’s a sickly child, but Littlefinger believes that sickly little boys sometimes become powerful men. He needs to learn to swing a sword, to ride a horse. It is time for him to tour the Veil, to meet the others, to begin his transition to manhood.

Barristan Selmy receives a missive. It’s from the hand of the King, Tywin. He opens it, and cannot believe his eyes. He takes his missive to Jorah, who is busy poring over maps. Jorah asks if he has forgotten a council meeting, he has not. He gives him the missive. It’s a royal pardon signed by Robert Baratheon. Jorah admits that he spied on her. He asks who gave it to him, but Barristan tells him it doesn’t matter. He hasn’t told Daenerys yet, he wanted to tell Jorah first. Jorah asks to speak with Dany in private, but Barristan will never allow him to be with Dany in private again.

Jorah approaches Daenerys throne room. Barristan stands on one side of her, and Missandei on the other. She asks why the Usurper pardoned him. He asks for a private audience, but she refuses wanting her question answered. He knows that Tywin sent the pardon to divide them. If they are divided then they will not be a threat to the Lannisters. She asks if it was forged. It was not. Jorah admits that he sends letters to Varys, the Spymaster of King’s Landing. She asks for the content of the letters, it was information. He gave him Viserys intentions, his selling of Daenerys, her becoming Drogo’s bride. He also told him when Viserys died. She asks if he told them she was carrying Drogo’s child. He did. The wine merchant that tried to kill her did so because of his information. Jorah had stopped her from drinking his wine. She points out that he knew it was poisoned. He betrayed her. Jorah asked for her forgiveness. He sold her secrets to the man who killed her father, and stole her brother’s throne and he wants forgivness. The Khalessi is not feeling forgiving. Jorah protected her, he loved her. She scoffs at his love, and if he were anyone else she would have him executed, but she doesn’t wish him dead or alive in her city. She gives him until nightfall to collect his things and leave to return to his masters in King’s Landing. If he is found after that time she will have him beheaded and his head tossed into Slaver’s bay. Jorah goes as she asks.

The Bolton men meet on the top of a crest. Ramsay gives his father the flag of Moat Caitlin. It is theirs. Roose asks his bastard to walk with him. There is no word of the younger Starks, they’re likely dead. Most of the Iron Borne are fleeing now. Roose asks him what he sees. Ramsay sees nothingness, but its not nothing, it’s the North Roose tells him and he is the Warden thanks to his son. Roose asks for his name, and Ramsay gives it to him, but again he is wrong. Roose has legitimized his bastard. Ramsay is no longer a Snow, but a Bolton. Ramsay falls to his knees honored by his gesture. He will hold to his name and his tradition, he vows to be worth of his father. Ramsay returns to his men, with a gleam in his crazy eyes. He and Reek can return home now, and have that bath he loves so much.

Littlefinger goes to visit Sansa in her chambers. He remembers when he first saw her, when she came to the castle, but she is a child no longer, his voice slipping into a low gravely growl. He asks why she chose to help him. She is sure that they would have executed him otherwise, and is unsure what they would have done with her. She bet on the man she knew rather than the strangers she doesn’t. Littlefinger doesn’t think that she knows him, but she knows what he wants. He can’t deny her claims as his voice hits Batman lows.

Arya thought she would be happy to hear that Joffery was dead, but it doesn’t. The hound doesn’t think anything makes her happy. Plenty of things make her happy, but the Hound sees that she’s only unhappy because she didn’t get to kill Joffery herself. Although the Hound thought that Joffery should be killed he doesn’t like the fact it was done by way of poison calling it a woman’s weapon. Arya finds his thinking ludicrous, saying that he will never be a great killer with such prejudice. She’d have killed Joffery with a chicken bone if she had the chance. The Hound laughs, he would have paid to see that. She notices his fussing with his armor. He should have let her burn his wound. He calls it a fleabite, but his fleabite is slowing him down. They don’t have to walk much further though. She wonders if her aunt will pay for her, and he knows that she will. The gate guard asks for his name. He reveals it, and tells him that he has Arya Stark, Lady Lysa’s niece. He offers his condolences. Lady Lysa died three days ago. The Hound is shocked by the news, and Arya finds it hilarious. They came all that way for nothing.

Robin is afraid to leave the Eyrie, his mother said it was dangerous outside. Littlefinger tells him it is just as dangerous inside. People die in their sleep, during meals, even squatting over their chamber pots. Death is all around, everyone dies sooner or later, not to worry about his death, but to worry about his life, to take charge of it. Sansa arrives, and Littlefinger takes in her sight greedily. She’s transformed from frail mouse to vixen.

Tyrion prepares for his upcoming trial by combat, deciding a man’s guilt or innocence by the Gods as two men hack eachother to pieces says something about the Gods. It will happen soon. Tyrion wonders what chance Oberyn has. Having a nickname like the Red Viper has to be a good thing he reasons. Jamie has never seen him fight. Tyrion laments that he’s going to die, they’re both going to die. But Jamie knows that Oberyn is confident. Tyrion asks how he will die, likely beheading, it seems so ordinary. He ponders over the familiar killings and what they’re called. Every type of killing have its own word. Jamie points out cousin killing doesn’t. Tyrion congratulates his discovery. He asks if he remembers cousin Orsen. He does, the wet nurse dropped him on his head and left him simple. The simple boy use to sit in the garden all day crushing beetles with rocks. Gthunk, gthunk. Tyrion laughs, nothing made him happier. Jamie would have thought he would have felt for the boy, but the teasing made Tyrion feel like everyone else. Jamie  drifted away, he had other interest. Tryion stayed with Orsen. He was curious, he wanted to know what he got out of it. He asked him, but he only said that he smashed them. Tyrion was undeterred he went to Mace Valleric’s library, Jamie wrinkles his nose, Valleric tried to touch him once. Much has been written about great men, but little about Morons. It wasn’t helpful so he went back to observe Orsen. He wasn’t mindless, he had his reasons.  Tyripon became obsessed with knowing, thinking about him all the time, thinking about his cousin smashing of beetles, hearing the gthunk gthunk no matter what he was doing. He thought it was awful that beetle deaths for no reason. Jamie points out that men, women and children die everyday for no reason, who cares about the beetles. It filled Tyrion with dread. How many were smashed and dried out, and returned to the dirt. He woke up crying for the them. He tried to stop Orsen once, but he was no match. Orsen smashed everyday until a mule kicked him in the chest and killed him. Tyrion puts down a roly-poly. He asks Jamie what he thinks, what its all about, but he doesn’t know. The bells chime, his hour is upon him. Jamie wishes him luck.

Tyrion is lead in shackles to watch the battle. Much of King’s Landing has been gathered. Oberyn is dressed in very light armour, but he likes to move around. Tyrion remarks that he shouldn’t be drinking, that both of their lives are on the line, but Oberyn always drinks before battle. The Mountain arrives, and Ellaria is fearful. He is the biggest man she has ever seen. But Oberyn knows that size doesn’t matter when you’re opponent is flat on his back, one thing that Tyrion is thankful for. The battle is set to begin. Jamie sneaks a look at Cersei, who looks away. Tywin hurries the Maester’s speech. Ellaria asks that Oberyn does not leave her alone in this world, and he says never. Oberyn shows his prowess. He asks the Mountain if he knows who he is. The Mountain thinks him only a dead man. Oberyn tells him who he is, and that the Mountain raped and killed his sister, and her children. He wants his confession. Oberyn shows how much faster he is than the Mountain, but his brute strength breaks the Viper’s spear. He’s not done yet though, even though the Mountain tosses him about. Oberyn lands devastating blows to him, and gets his opponent down. He won’t kill him though. He wants to hear who gave the order to kill Elia. Oberyn’s need for revenge gives the Mountain the chance to knock him down. The Mountain admits that he raped her, and he smashed her head, demonstrating it on Oberyn as Ellaria’s screams piece the air. He smashes the Viper’s head like a ripe melon, before collapsing himself. Goodbye Oberyn, your exhilarating reckless spirit will be missed. Cersei is pleased, Jamie is disgusted, and Tyrion is shocked. Tywin rises. The God’s will is known. In the name of Tommen Baratheon, he sentences Tyrion to death.


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