Harenhal was the greatest castle ever built in The Seven Kingdoms. It was designed and constructed to withstand attack from any army. But, when Aegon The Conqueror came, he didn’t bring an army. He brought dragons. The heat from the dragons’ fire melted and cracked all five of the great towers. People were burned alive inside, including Harren The Black and his sons. Ever since that day, it has been said that Harenhal was haunted with the ghosts of the dead.
Arya and Gendry didn’t believe in ghosts, until today. Already, a man fell to his death the other day. Seemingly, with no one else around, and today, it was Weese. The morning was ushered in with the screams of a washerwoman who found Weese in the yard being ravaged by his own dog, a dog he had raised from a pup. Dogs don’t attack their masters without good reason, unless…
Unless, it was the ghosts of Harenhal.
I saw Arya’s face as she looked upon Weese lying dead in the yard, Gendry thought. In her eyes was a look of knowing. She studied the dead body. A sense of satisfaction and accomplishment and curiosity all crossed her face at the same time. The man’s death did not appear to be a surprise to her. The manner of his death, however, was, which she was just now learning with the rest of us. I saw the dog eating at the man’s face, so I know she couldn’t have killed him. But still, somehow Weasel… Arry… Ann… Arya… knew this man was going to die. Gendry looked over at Arya.
I looked into what was left of Weese’s mauled face. It was too soon. There was supposed to be a window of time where I could change my mind, revoke Weese’s name and replace it with Joffrey’s, but it was too late now. I had wasted the second death on a man that only a mouse would be scared of. I scolded myself, ensuring that the next name would be Joffrey’s. But would it?
Jaqen H’ghar appeared on the balcony above, sitting, eating an apple with a look of contentment and pride on his face, as if to say “See little girl, see what a Faceless Man can do?” Arya noticed him there. She tried not to look at him, but her eyes could not leave his. She hoped Gendry didnt notice.
A man finds it fascinating that an entire castle would gather to admire his work. The God of Death was paid part of his due today. A girl has whispered a name, and a man has done the rest. Why does a girl looked so surprised ?
Weese was Arya’s handler, and he was a loud and threatening man. He had to be, to keep his charges in line, Gendry thought. He was the one responsible to the lord of the castle, so he was rough on his charges. I would understand it if she didn’t like him, but kill him? I don’t think even Weasel would hate him that much. Yet, here he was, dead, and lying in the yard, attacked by his own dog, and Arya knew why. I’m sure of it. There’s one thing I’ve learned about Arya, things are not always what they seem.
Right now I had to attempt to make it look as though I knew nothing about Weese’s death. Everyone was looking at the corpse in disbelief, so I attempted to mirror their faces. I noticed Gendry watching me, convincing myself that he didn’t know. He couldn’t possibly know. A mask, I had to wear a mask. I should be used to wearing masks by now, having put on many different faces. This was just another face. The face of surprise, confusion, terror. I had to think about how I must have looked when my father died, in order to channel that side of myself. This was the face of fear which was hiding my relief and content.
Before Harenhal, Arya was traveling north with Yoren, a man of the Night’s Watch. He was going to take her home. They called her Arry because she was posing as a boy for her safety. One night, during a skirmish with Ser Amory Lorch and his band of Lannister men, Arry saved Jaqen and two others from certain death. They were trapped in a cage, as fire raged around them. Arry threw them an ax, so that they could free themselves. Now, at Harenhal, Jaqen H’gar has found Arya.
“A boy has stolen from the God of Death,” Jaqen told Arya, “A girl must repay the debt.” “Three deaths were stolen from a God, and three deaths must be repaid.” “A girl must whisper three names to a man, and a man will do the rest,” he explained.
This is the second name now. The girl has but one name left to whisper, a man wishes her to choose wisely.
Looking at Jaqen, I remembered the third name once again. I had been planning on using the name wisely, but was it too soon to jump forward and whisper the name of the king? Besides, I may want to kill Joffrey myself. Were there people here, at Harenhal, who desperately needed to die first? How about Amory Lorch ? He killed Yoren and the others. He was a big name here at Harenhal. I could even whisper Tywin Lannister’s name. That would end the war for sure. But I had time. I walked away from Weese’s body, telling myself:
“I am the ghost of Harenhal.”