A Read of A Dance with Dragons – Part 17

Chapter 16 – Daenerys

Xaro Xhoan Daxos has come to visit. He’s brought erotic dancers with him to entertain Dany as they eat. He’s also bought thirteen galleys – the ships Daenerys asked him for when she was in Qarth. Then his price was her hand in marriage and a dragon, now it is that she must leave for Westeros and let things in the Free Cities get back to normal. Daenerys asks him to help her start trading and he tells her that Meereen has nothing but slaves and olives – and the previous rulers of Meereen burnt all the olive groves. Daenerys says she will consider it and ask Admiral Groleo to look over the ships.
The next day she assembles her council. The Dothraki don’t want to go anywhere by boat. Groleo says the boats are old but well maintained, but taking them to Westeros will be tricky. Her Meereenese advisers ask her not to leave them to the mercy of the Yunkai. Dany says they can come to Westeros with her, and her Mother’s Men say they will follow wherever she goes. They acknowledge that thirteen ships are not enough and Grey Worm say the Unsullied will take the demon road. Dany decides she will not abandon Meereen to the same fate of Astapor. She will stay and Westeros will wait.
Daenerys summons Xaro Xhoan Daxos who presents her with a tapestry showing a map of the world. She tells him she is staying, that she cannot leave. He weeps and tells her he should have killed her in Qarth. She dismisses him but his ships stay in the bay. The next day, a messenger brings her a bloody glove, a declaration of war.
Enemies who pretend to be friends eh? It seems like Dany is beset on all sides. How will she protect Meereen? How can she feed her people? I think it is the right moral decision to stay and secure what she has won. If she leaves, she will leave vulnerable people behind and the journey will severely weaken her forces. Besides, she needs to learn how to rule first. Otherwise she’ll make all her mistakes in King’s Landing and will end up fighting all the time. I am so not surprised Xaro turned out to be a dick.

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