But they never war amongst themselves: Conflicts are settled in melees between rival armies that are more like a huge group MMA fight than an actual battle. They consider sex to be a literal art form, like music or sculpture, and every Summer Islander spends at least one year serving in temples for the god and goddess of love, learning how to make love as a form of worship. Schools of carnivorous fish eat anyone unlucky enough to fall into the Sothoryi rivers.
If you somehow got stranded on Sothyros, even hanging with the White Walkers would start to look good.
The farther out you go, the more far out things get. But man, what a sketch! Far to the east, the warrior women of Hyrkoon make up the finest fighting force on the planet; only the choicest male specimens are permitted to breed. Farther still stands the sprawling empire of Yi Ti, an Imperial China analog whose wealth, size, and armies make it the greatest civilization in history.
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Most dragons had been dead for centuries, destroyed in the massive volcanic eruptions that ended the Valyrian Empire — until Daenerys brought them back from extinction with fire and blood. But there sure are some tantalizing hints to the contrary in this tome. Another section on the Shivering Sea takes reports of ice dragons, who breathe out paralyzing cold instead of scorching fire, pretty seriously.
And there are a pair of doth-protest-too-much dismissals of legends about dragons or dragon eggs deep beneath Winterfell. Nobody really knows anything. War is horrifying. Good guys do awful things; bad guys do noble things. How old is the world? How long ago did its civilizations start? Did its most famous heroes ever actually exist?
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Path Created with Sketch. Shape Created with Sketch. All red priests are required to perform the rite. Red priests are trained to see visions in the flames of their nightfires. These visions could be about the past, the future, or things happening far away from the location of the priest. It takes years of training to see the shapes beyond the flames, and even longer to learn to distinguish visions about the past from visions about a certain future and a possible future.
R'hllor is also said to give his priests the power to see through falsehoods, as " the Other's servants oft hide black hearts in gaudy light". The priestess Melisandre claims that shadows are servants of light and children of fire. Followers of R'hllor believe that he made the sun and the stars. A prophecy found in ancient books of Asshai claims that after a long summer an evil cold darkness shall fall on the world.
Azor Ahai , wielding the sword Lightbringer , shall be reborn to combat this darkness. Thoros was unsuccessful, however, and started to question his own faith. The red priestess Melisandre travels to Dragonstone on her own initiative  in search of the prophesied prince Azor Ahai. Followers of R'hllor at Stannis's court are known as queen's men. Melisandre, who is also a shadowbinder , births shadow assassins to kill Lord Renly Baratheon  and Ser Cortnay Penrose  at the siege of Storm's End , telling Ser Davos Seaworth that shadows are servants of light.
Ser Gerald Gower , one of the king's men , believes R'hllor is a feeble god after Stannis's defeat in the Battle of the Blackwater. Thoros of Myr explains to Arya Stark that he surprisingly resurrected Lord Beric Dondarrion by performing the last kiss after the battle at the Mummer's Ford , attributing Beric's revival to R'hllor. Jon declines, however, as Melisandre would require him to burn the heart tree in the godswood of Winterfell. In Qohor , the followers of R'hllor try to burn the Black Goat.
Ser Daven Lannister informs Ser Jaime Lannister that his scouts have spotted night fires in the high places and villages near the siege of Riverrun.
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In order to have strong winds for Stannis's voyage north to Eastwatch-by-the-Sea , Davos recalls that Melisandre had sacrificed Lord Alester Florent , who had been accused of treason, to R'hllor. Stannis's army is slowed by a blizzard during their march on Winterfell. Some of the queen's men desire to sacrifice Asha Greyjoy , a follower of the Drowned God , so that R'hllor will end the storm.
The iron captain sacrifices slave girls by burning them alive on a fishing ketch set adrift to burn and then sink in Slaver's Bay. According to the High Sparrow , the new High Septon , Stannis has turned from the truth of the Seven to worship a red demon, and his false faith has no place in the Seven Kingdoms. Axell : The Lady Melisandre tells us that sometimes R'hllor permits his faithful servants to glimpse the future in flames.
It seemed to me as I watched the fire this morning that I was looking at a dozen beautiful dancers, maidens garbed in yellow silk spinning and swirling before a great king. I think it was a true vision, ser. A glimpse of the glory that awaits His Grace after we take King's Landing and the throne that is his by rights. Davos : I saw only fire, but the smoke was making my eyes water. R'hllor is the source of all good. It was not me who raised him , my lady.
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It was the Lord. R'hllor is not done with him yet. Life is warmth, and warmth is fire, and fire is God's and God's alone. R'hllor chooses such instruments as he requires. His ways are mysterious, but no man may withstand his fiery will. R'hllor spoke to his chosen ones through blessed fire, in a language of ash and cinder and twisting flame that only a god could truly grasp. Victarion : Your red god will have his due, but the seas are ruled by the Drowned God. Moqorro : There are no gods but R'hllor and the Other , whose name may not be said.
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May the Others bugger your Lord of Light. Light our fire and protect us from the dark, blah, blah, light our way and keep us toasty warm, the night is full of terrors, save us from the scary thing, and blah blah blah some more. Red Rahloo means nothing here. Corliss : You northmen brought these snows upon us. You and your demon trees.
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R'hllor will save us. Artos : R'hllor will doom us. The red god's choir only knows a single song.
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