This is about the series - Game Of Thrones.

They show that the Red Woman can use magical powers to infiltrate into Renly Baratheon's quarters and kill him with quite the ease. She doesn't fight the guards, she bypasses them in her "shadow" form and heads directly for Renly.

If that is the case, why does Stannis Baratheon not use her to sneak up and take out all the key players of King's Landing and claim his throne?


2 Answers 2


Several reasons:

  1. Unlike the Baratheon/Tyrell alliance, there is no single person that could be assassinated and have any lasting effect. Kill Joffrey? He still has an heir. Kill Tyrion? Any number of commanders loyal to the Lannisters can rise to the cause. So on and so forth. Kill Cersei? Tyrion and the realm would've thanked him.
  2. Unlike the Baratheon/Tyrell alliance, this was a siege. Even if you disrupted the command structure, you'd still have huge walls you'd have to scale. For the assassination be of any help in a siege it must lead to a complete surrender. No single target exists for such a scenario, and you'd have to kill multiple key people.
  3. Creating the "shadow babies" takes a great toll out of Stannis. The one he created (two in the books) greatly weakened him. There was no way he'd be able to create enough of them to help him win King's Landing.
  4. Stannis purposely left out Melisandre from the assault on King's Landing in fear that men might call it her victory and not his.
  • 2
    I remember one of the shadow creatures killed Renly, I don't remember the other one who was killed by it?
    – Dredd
    Mar 2, 2015 at 15:39
  • 2
    @JudgeDredd the other one killed Ser Penrose (book only) castellan of Storm's End. Mar 2, 2015 at 16:24
  • @SystemDown She clearly says in S2E03, I can only request god of fire, I cannot command. So she cannot kill the person at her will, She can try, but she doesn't guarantee that something will absolutely happen. Oct 17, 2017 at 9:02

The answer is in 3x03, in the conversation between Stannis and Melissandre:

Stannis: I want Joffrey dead. I want Robb Stark dead. Make me another son.

Melissandre: I cannot.

Stannis: Why?

Melissandre: You don't have the strength. It would kill you.

Stannis: I'm not so easily killed. Men have been trying for years. I want you.

Melissandre: Your fires burn low, my king. There is another way. A better way.

And then she undertakes the mission to get Gendry. She says that the solution lies in sacrifices, which they try till the very end.

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