I spent significant portions of (okay, most of) my adolescence devouring fantasy novels, and I was thrilled when Game of Thrones exploded on HBO. Dragons and manticores and basilisks, oh my: Suddenly everyone was excited about magical creatures.
Delighted as I was by my new weekly fix of exotic and mostly imaginary beasties, I neglected to make the crucial realization that some of them had analogs outside of cable TV. A few days after this season’s finale, I ripped open a pouch of organic cat food and felt a chill creep through the kitchen. Why was it so cold? I met my two cats’ icy blue gazes as I set their dinner on the floor and realization hit me like a crowd-flung turd in King Joffrey’s face: Siamese cats are obviously White Walkers, frozen fiends that rise after death to wreak havoc on humankind.
From George R.R. Martin’s prologue to A Game of Thrones, where the Walkers (“Others” in the books) make Meow Mix out of their human opponents:
“The Other halted. Will saw its eyes, blue, deeper and bluer than any human eyes, a blue that burned like ice … the right eye was open. The pupil burned blue. It saw.”
I took the photo above years ago as a kitten size-comparison shot, but upon reflection I’m pretty sure our young Matty tore apart whoever was wearing the motorcycle boot, much as ravens devour the dead on battlefields.
This kitten is not resting. This kitten is waiting.
I repeat, waiting.
Old Nan — the affectionate, lore-spouting biddy who tends to the Stark children at Winterfell — starts to warn them about the Walkers in bedtime stories:
“In that darkness, the White Walkers came for the first time. They swept through cities and kingdoms, riding their dead horses, hunting with their packs of pale spiders big as hounds.”
But she meets her likely end (Nan, we hardly knew ye!) before she can mention meowing Others. Half-Baked Game of Thrones Theory #521: George R.R. Martin kills characters off before they can reveal the truth about Siamese cats.
Who could have known that Othor and Jafer Flowers, two slain brothers of the Night’s Watch, would reawaken when carried back to Castle Black and attempt to kill Lord Mormont in the dead of night? I did, because I’ll stroll into my bathroom to disrobe and take a nice long shower and OH GOD THERE HE IS WAITING FOR ME TO MAKE MYSELF VULNERABLE!
At least the Walkers in Westeros hang out in predictable places like haunted forests and lonely old keeps. This one above is in a Miata, and how fair is that? WINTER IS COMING (IN A MAZDA)!
Note the fondness for breaches in walls.
The only things that seem to slow them down are dragonglass (well done, Samwell Tarly!) and Valyrian steel, though I’ve had some success with chicken-and-cranberry treats.
Some success, I emphasize. Their hunger is never satisfied.
“What color are their eyes?” Jon Snow asked Craster’s daughter-wife Gilly when she spoke of “white shadows” in the night. “Blue,” she replied. “As bright as blue stars, and as cold.”
We call our cat Steve a Siamoose, as he’s either a lynx point Siamese (as the rescue organization that found him and his brothers on the street in Baltimore supposed) or a Siamese-tabby hybrid. Note that “Siamese” plus “tabby” equals “stabby” — coincidence? Steve looks like the Night’s King watching Jon Snow escape across the Shivering Sea with the wildlings he wasn’t able to kill and reanimate. Rule us gently when you annihilate our race and conscript us to your frigid army, Steve.
Do you know a supernatural Siamese? Tell us in the comments.
Read more by Lauren Oster.
About the author: Lauren Oster is a freelance writer and editor in New York City. She and her husband share an apartment on the Lower East Side with Steve and Matty, two Siamese-ish cats. She doesn’t leave home without a book or two, a handful of plastic animals, Icelandic licorice mints, and her camera. Follow her on Twitter or Instagram.