Did Melisandre Get Greyscale When She Touched Shireen's Face In 'Game Of Thrones'? (And Would It Be Such A Bad Thing If She Did?)
Until last week, it was easy to figure out who to root for in the upcoming battle at Winterfell between King Stannis Baratheon and the despicable Boltons. One was the rightful heir to the Iron Throne, attempting to protect the Seven Kingdoms from the impending White Walker invasion; the other was a family of mustache-twirling villains who organize wedding massacres and assault their wives on their wedding nights. That's about as black and white as things get on HBO's Game Of Thrones. Well, all it took to turn that around was one horrific scene in last Sunday's episode, when Red Priestess Melisandre finally convinced Stannis to burn his own daughter alive as a sacrifice to her god, R'hllor. Now everyone involved in the conflict is terrible, and, as a result, I'm just hoping that Melisandre will get greyscale and, subsequently, die soon.
Poor Princess Shireen was about as innocent and pure as a character living in Westeros can be. Of course, that means we should've known she was marked for death from her very first appearance in Season 3 — but that didn't make it any easier to watch as her father stood stoically by while Melisandre lit the pyre underneath Shireen, and listened to her piercing screams for help. Stannis definitely deserves a harsh punishment for his part in Shireen's death, but, if the books are any indication, his fate may already be sealed anyway.
It's Melisandre we need to worry about now. She's been burning people alive ever since we first met her on the shores of Dragonstone in Season 2, and eventually she'll have to pay for these atrocities. But, could it happen sooner than we think? Could she, in fact, have already brought her doom upon herself?
Eagle-eyed viewers noticed that last season, during the episode "The Lion And The Rose," Melisandre and Shireen had a conversation during which the Red Priestess touched the princess's face:
Many viewers likely didn't think much of it then, because the concept of greyscale was much hazier a year ago. But Season 5 has put in a lot of time and effort explaining the disease, even going so far as to infect poor Ser Jorah with it. Audiences were quick to pick up on the fact that Jorah grabbed Daenerys's hand during last week's episode, and many are worried about whether or not he transferred the disease to his beloved Khaleesi. If Jorah did infect Dany, then it stands to reason that Shireen could have also infected Melisandre, right?
Sadly, though, that's not the case. While Jorah is actively suffering from greyscale, Shireen had already survived the disease. Those markings on her face weren't greyscale itself, they were scars left over from when she had been afflicted. If all it took to infect someone with greyscale was touching them, then likely all of Dragonstone would have it by now since Stannis and/or Davos would have picked it up from Shireen and passed it on by now.
Even if Shireen's greyscale was active, Melisandre probably wouldn't be susceptible to infection. The fires of her faith cleanse and protect her and all that nonsense. Remember when poor Maester Cressen attempted to poison the Red Priestess back in Season 2 and she drank the poison like it was clear spring water? Yeah, it seems like it's going to be very hard to kill Melisandre.
And hey, it's probably for the best that Melisandre doesn't have greyscale. That would take SO LONG to kill her. She needs to die much sooner — and hopefully much more painfully — than that.
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