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In fantasy, the good guys are all about the ultimate victory and you can tell who they are because, regardless the odds, they always defeat the enemy. However, Game of Thrones is all about the small victories that real life has taught adults to accept.

Daenerys gets to be a mother, but not for the baby she gave birth to.
Its a theme that resonates with so many men and women that can't have children, as it does for the many that can, but relate to the pain. As young as Daenerys was when she lost her child, she embraced motherhood the only way she could, turning a small victory from total defeat.

Jaime gets to have true love, even if he can't see it.
It's an odd thing to accept from a male character, that he only wishes for someone love him back. Like so many female leads, however, he can't see true love no matter how many bear pits he jumps in, but he finally gets to have it, for richer, for poorer, in sickness and in health, because of everything he is and everything he owns, with someone that endured the worse with him and is learning to embrace the better. Brienne in itself is a victory, big or small depends on whether or not Jaime could see it.

Tyrion gets to have respect, even if it doesn't come from his father.
Pod saved him because he looks up to him, Shae would kill for him, because of it, Varys would bribe for him and I suspect Bronn would be friends with even if he wouldn'tt get paid. So far, Tyrion has been able to unite the tribesmen of the Vale, the soldiers at Blackwater, even a few politicians to his cause. A second son that worths a first, and has won over people as different as bastars like Jon Snow to Princes like Oberyn Martell.

Arya gets to have a family, even if it's not her own
Lommy may have been an orphan, but Arya loved him like a brother and like a brother she avenged him, Hot Pie may not have been a high born, but he was good enough for her and like a sister Arya bid farewell to him. The Hound may not be a father, but its as good as it gets for Arya to hug him when she's sad, to look up to him when she's free and to emulate when he started to kill.

For someone that never gets to go home, Arya has a way to make one for herself among the outcasts of the Realm.

The Night's Watch remains the shield that guards the realm, even if there's no one
to protect them.
The last line of defense keeps being fed by baby murderers (Janos Slynt), sadists (Ser Alister) and old men (Maester Aemon), but those men are standing there to fight until they are as dead as Yoren, Lord Commander Mormont and Benjen Stark. They go bak to their posts like Jon and Sam, they train in the snow like the new recruits and there's no doubt in my mind The White Walkers will cross over their dead bodies

Those little things that we call small victories do fulfill them, even if they aren't the ultimate victory we have come from expect from the good guys. So, So you call that a victory? Can you think of another? Which are your favorite small victories from Game of Thrones?

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Remember when Gendry told Arya that he was leaving with the Brotherhood Without Banners because he had no family and she cried out to him saying she could be his family.




The wounds still cut real deep around here.
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Hence the reason why Gendry doesn't count as brother like Lommy and Hot Pie, or surrogate father like Yoren and The Hound, or fun loving uncle like Thoros and Jaquen.

Gendry would count as a life partner more than anything else...
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Arya gets to kick ass, even if not Joffrey's ass...
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Joffrey died, even if not at Stannis's, Robb's, Renly's, Greyjoy's, Mance Rayder's or Daenerys's hands.
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The Starks get a small victory, who's left of them anyway, when Greyjoy gets his balls sliced. Guess they won't be the only house doomed to disappear in the near future. Though there is still one male stark left, but is still a victory.
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2 male Stark are still alive - Bran and Rickon.
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Unless he magically fixes his legs or has an emergency stash of Stark juice hidden somewhere, it's implide that he's paralized from the waist down.
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Which may or may not mean that he cannot sire children. I would not dismiss him. And there is always John Snow - who may not carry the name - but things like that get changed when needed.
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@Gem-n-eye below: the problem with Jon is that his watch has not ended, and will not end until he dies.

Uncle Benjen didn't become heir to Winterfell when Ned did, and neither can Jon even if all his half-brothers die.
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So, I really don't see Bran fathering kids, and you're right he is on a "larger-than-life mission" and will have the power to pass on his heritage to Rickon. Snow though, that I don't see that happening. I'm not sure Branor Rickon have the power to make him a Stark, and besides, if he's going to leave the Nights Watch now, I don't see it to become head of the Stark House. It would be for something far larger.I just thought it a small victory with Greyjoy suffering, but it would seem thats the least important part of this discussion...which is great actually even if everyone is against me.
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Has anyone here read the books?
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I'd say Bran can't produce children because of the direction he's heading for more than anything else.

Much like Daenerys, Bran doesn't seem to have a loving family but a larger-than-life mission waiting for him.
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Score one for Ser Loras and his terrific come back to Jaime's "you will never marry Cersei": "And neither will you".

That's got to count at least for a small victory.
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Oh yes, I loved that one... It looked like Jamie was going to get away with being a bully (let's not forget that just because of his tough journey last season, he is a bully) and then, Sir Loras kicked back! Go Loras!
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Jaime is not a bully, he's dislexic: everything from his idea of male bonding (Ser Loras) to flirting (Brienne) gets mixed up in his head as if the letters of a book.
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It was definitely a good come back, but I thought this scene was a bit strange as Loras doesn't want to marry Cersei, his grandmother tried to get him out of it. So I couldn't really see what Jamie was hoping to achieve, Loras can't back out now.
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True, it isn't a victory because Ser Loras wants to marry her, it's a victory because he can marry and Jaime can not.
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More importantly, he's free to marry Cersei, while Jaime is not. Those two have brought enough dishonor on house Lannister to last Tywin a century.
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Dislexic heart: Jaime mixed up the notion of sister with the notion of wife growing up .

I think that's why it took Brienne to snap him out of it: at some point, Jaime realized that what Brienne had with Renly was no different than what he had with Cersei.

From then on, he started reading the situation as it was.
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Except for the ones you have mentioned, there is only this one coming to my mind (and I've thought about it for quite some time ;-)), which (un)fortunately does not apply to only one single character:
Maybe there could be the small victory category called "Stand your ground, even if the Lord will not like it".
One example for that: Davos' saving Gendry, sending him off in a little boat, even though he might have surely known that Stannis will not approve. Also he told his Lord that he does not trust Melisandre which got him in trouble but it felt right for him.
Another example: The Hound leaving "his King" at possibly a good moment in time and place, choosing no longer to work for this crazy teenager.
One has to respect both for their decisions; small victories but important, especially for the characters, nevertheless.
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It agree it depends on what's really important for a character: Ser Barristan wanted to serve with honor, to a rightful King/Queen, and he found it in serving Daenerys even he serves in exile.

The Hound just wanted to protect a child, no matter how difficult that child may be, and he gets that small victory in protecting Arya like he never could protect Joffrey from himself.

Brienne only wanted to die guarding Renly, she couldn't save him in the end, but she kept Jaime alive while she was guarding him and now she may even get the chance to avenge her King.
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