snkrfnd said: I'm a fan of the crossroads inn. When I'm reading and the inn makes an appearance, I'm about guaranteed there will be an interesting plot development. How do you feel about it and it's continued place for exciting Westerosi happenings?
I think it’s a pretty interesting place! The story that Septon Meribald relates about it is fascinating:
“The Old Inn, some call it. There has been an inn there for many hundreds of years, though this inn was only raised during the reign of the first Jaehaerys, the king who built the kingsroad. Jaehaerys and his queen slept there during their journeys, it is said. For a time the inn was known as the Two Crowns in their honor, until one innkeep built a bell tower, and changed it to the Bellringer Inn. Later it passed to a crippled knight named Long Jon Heddle, who took up ironworking when he grew too old to fight. He forged a new sign for the yard, a three-headed dragon of black iron that he hung from a wooden post. The beast was so big it had to be made in a dozen pieces, joined with rope and wire. When the wind blew it would clank and clatter, so the inn became known far and wide as the Clanking Dragon.”
“Is the dragon sign still there?” asked Podrick.
“No,” said Septon Meribald. “When the smith’s son was an old man, a bastard son of the fourth Aegon rose up in rebellion against his trueborn brother and took for his sigil a black dragon. These lands belonged to Lord Darry then, and his lordship was fiercely loyal to the king. The sight of the black iron dragon made him wroth, so he cut down the post, hacked the sign into pieces, and cast them into the river. One of the dragon’s heads washed up on the Quiet Isle many years later, though by that time it was red with rust. The innkeep never hung another sign, so men forgot the dragon and took to calling the place the River Inn. In those days, the Trident flowed beneath its back door, and half its rooms were built out over the water. Guests could throw a line out their window and catch trout, it’s said. There was a ferry landing here as well, so travelers could cross to Lord Harroway’s Town and Whitewalls.”
So, here’s an inn, of ancient history, run by basically the closest thing Westeros has to bourgeoisie, middle-class smallfolk with surnames. Originally named in honor of the Targaryens (Jaehaerys and Alysanne, my favorite), tangentially involved in the Blackfyre Rebellion (the story of the black dragon disguised as a red one is something many feel is a hint to “Aegon”’s plotline). And interestingly, Jon Heddle’s probable descendant Black Tom Heddle was involved in the Second Blackfyre Rebellion (as seen in The Mystery Knight).
And it was a center of commerce and travel, even after the river moved (some 70 years before the present day). Masha Heddle ran the inn (woman-owned business, yo), until unfortunately the incident with Tyrion and Catelyn took place there. And so when Tywin got to the inn, he hanged her. Her nephew tried to run the inn, even bringing in whores to attract business (during wartime in the hell of the Riverlands, not easy), until the incident with Sandor and Arya and Gregor’s men happened there… and so some lord killed him too. (It’s not easy being an innkeeper who gets blamed for bad stuff they can’t control. It’s not easy being a Heddle for that matter.)
And so Masha’s young nieces, Jeyne and Willow, took over the inn… working with the Brotherhood Without Banners, basically running it as a home for children orphaned by the war. Gendry worked there as a blacksmith and protector, too. Until the incident with Brienne and Rorge and Biter… though thankfully between Brienne and Gendry, no one was hurt (except Brienne’s poor face).
Anyway… yes, I’m sure the Inn at the Crossroads will continue to have significant events happen there. I mean, the crossroads are where things tend to go down anyway, and this inn is… well, it may not exactly be cursed, but it’s definitely got the curse of interesting times.
I’m also pretty sure at least one Dunk and Egg story will have a scene there. Perhaps the one GRRM recently mentioned, “The Village Hero”? We’ll just have to wait and see. :)
I expect a major battle against the Others will take place at the Inn at the Crossroads. it might be their Gettysburg (except furthest South, rather than furthest North).
If not there, then near Harrenhal/Gods Eye.