Tower of the Hand

Book 1, Chapter 53.
Lord Commander Mormont examines the corpses of two of Ben Stark's rangers and orders them brought back to Castle Black. Jon learns of Eddard's arrest and assaults Ser Alliser, which gets him arrested. Jon saves Lord Commander Mormont from a wight.
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Lord Commander Mormont and Ser Jaremy have arrived to examine the corpses Ghost discovered. Jon is there as well, and so are Chett, Sam, who represents Maester Aemon, and a dozen rangers including Dywen, Hake and Ketter. Earlier, Bass, the kennelmaster, tried to get the dogs to take a scent from the hand Ghost brought back, but they refused to do so. Chett is handling the dogs now, and they are fighting him and refusing to go near the corpses. Ser Jaremy recognizes the dead men as Othor and Jafer Flowers, both of whom were part of Ben Stark's ranging. Ser Jaremy thinks they must have been dead only a day, but Sam points out that the blood has dried up and they must have been dead longer. It is strange though, because there is no sign of rotting, or maggots, and no animals other than Ghost will get close. Both corpses also have bright blue eyes, though neither one's eyes were ever blue. Lord Commander Mormont orders the corpses returned to Castle Black so Maester Aemon can examine them and orders Ser Jaremy to scour the surrounding woods.

Bowen meets the group as they return to the Wall and tells Lord Commander Mormont that a raven has come. As Jon returns to his quarters, everyone from Ser Alliser to Donal Noye stares at him. He finds Pyp, Grenn, and Todder and learns that Robert is dead. He returns to Lord Commander Mormont's quarters, and the lord commander tells him about Eddard being arrested and charged with treason. He is in a daze for the rest of the day. Everyone knows what happened. He gets piteous looks, and Hobb gives him an extra helping at dinner. Matthar, Pyp, Grenn, Todder and Sam try to comfort him. He hears Ser Alliser slandering Eddard and attacks, leading to his being subdued and imprisoned.

After some time, Jon dozes off in his cell, and when he wakes up, it has gotten very cold and Ghost is scrabbling at the door. He opens the door and sees his guard dead with his head twisted around. He goes up to the Lord Commander's chambers and sees a dark shape going in. When he follows, he discovers it is the supposedly dead Othor.1 He hacks Othor's arm off as well as half of his face, but Othor keeps coming and so does the severed arm. Othor starts to strangle Jon, but Ghost saves him. Lord Commander Mormont stumbles out with an oil lamp, and Jon grabs it, torches the drapes, and throws the burning mass at Othor.


  1. Wights - Wights have black hands and bright burning blue eyes. They are relentless in their pursuit of killing, and cannot be killed save by burning. They keep moving even if they have lost limbs or been split nearly in two, and any parts hacked off continue to function on their own as well. No animal will come near one.


Warning: Footnotes may contain spoilers from later chapters or books.


1.  Prologue 26.  Eddard V 51.  Arya IV
2.  Bran I 27.  Jon IV 52.  Sansa IV
3.  Catelyn I 28.  Eddard VI 53.  Jon VII
4.  Daenerys I 29.  Catelyn V 54.  Bran VI
5.  Eddard I 30.  Sansa II 55.  Daenerys VI
6.  Jon I 31.  Eddard VII 56.  Catelyn VIII
7.  Catelyn II 32.  Tyrion IV 57.  Tyrion VII
8.  Arya I 33.  Arya III 58.  Sansa V
9.  Bran II 34.  Eddard VIII 59.  Eddard XV
10.  Tyrion I 35.  Catelyn VI 60.  Catelyn IX
11.  Jon II 36.  Eddard IX 61.  Jon VIII
12.  Daenerys II 37.  Daenerys IV 62.  Daenerys VII
13.  Eddard II 38.  Bran V 63.  Tyrion VIII
14.  Tyrion II 39.  Tyrion V 64.  Catelyn X
15.  Catelyn III 40.  Eddard X 65.  Daenerys VIII
16.  Sansa I 41.  Catelyn VII 66.  Arya V
17.  Eddard III 42.  Jon V 67.  Bran VII
18.  Bran III 43.  Tyrion VI 68.  Sansa VI
19.  Catelyn IV 44.  Eddard XI 69.  Daenerys IX
20.  Jon III 45.  Sansa III 70.  Tyrion IX
21.  Eddard IV 46.  Eddard XII 71.  Jon IX
22.  Tyrion III 47.  Daenerys V 72.  Catelyn XI
23.  Arya II 48.  Eddard XIII 73.  Daenerys X
24.  Daenerys III 49.  Jon VI
25.  Bran IV 50.  Eddard XIV