Anonymous said: You have really awesome meta skills. Do you think if Ned told Cat the truth about Jon (assuming R+L+J) it would have impacted her relationship with Jon in a positive way considering the Tully words and all? Or make it worst?
I think the truth would have definitely improved her relationship with Jon in some ways… but made things more difficult in other ways.
If Cat knew that Jon wasn’t Ned’s son, and that his unusual treatment wasn’t to place his status as more important than her children (because Cat could have forgiven Ned any number of bastards if they weren’t raised at Winterfell, if Jon hadn’t looked so much more like Ned than her own children did), things could have been very different. If Cat knew that Jon was Lyanna’s son and had to be protected from those who would kill any “dragonspawn”… then yes, her “family, duty, honor” motto would have come in strong on Jon’s side.
But I also have to consider that Ned would not want any hint that Jon was not his bastard. So Cat would still have to remain cool to Jon in public and not give any impression that she approved of him, and never let on to her children that Jon was not their bastard brother. But Cat would also probably feel guilty about treating him that way (the Tully motto again), and so her coolness would alternate with brief moments of warmth… And if Jon wasn’t in on the secret, that would still mess him over psychologically, unfortunately. Jon would never understand why she’d be so mercurial around him, what he’d do “right” that made Cat approve of him and be nice to him, or what he’d do “wrong” to make her hate him again.
You know, people generally speculate that Ned didn’t tell Cat the truth about Lyanna and Rhagar and Jon because he’d only known her for a very short time and wasn’t sure if he could trust her with the secret. But this what-if makes me think that it wasn’t a matter of trust, but a matter of honor — bad enough that Ned had to live this life of lies, but to force his innocent wife to do so as well would have been too much. At least if he lies to her, she’s true to herself and her own emotions.
(And also there’s narrative reasons too — Ned’s own POV is the biggest reason for the R+L=J theory, no way could Cat have gone 3 books and not given the secret away to the reader.)