The Whispers is a ruined castle of House Crabb on Crackclaw Point in the northeastern crownlands.
The downtrodden castle sits on the edge of a cliff overlooking the narrow sea. The castle, which is triangular with square towers at its corners, was built with unmortared stone. It is now overgrown with forest from its godswood, which contains soldier pines and a young weirwood. Poisonous red ivy grows over the fallen curtain wall. The beacon tower collapsed when Dick Crabb was a boy and now sits in the sea fifty feet below. There is a large smuggler's cove nearby. The Whispers is named for the sound of the sea pouring into holes made in the cliff and echoing in caverns below the castle.
According to legend, the ancient castle received its name from the whispering heads of the victims of Ser Clarence Crabb, a fabled knight from Crackclaw Point. Whenever Clarence would kill a man—including lords, wizards, knights, pirates, and a king of Duskendale—he would cut off their head and bring it back to his castle to his wife, a woods witch. There, she would kiss the head and bring it back to life. The heads would then talk to each other and give Clarence counsel, creating the whispering sound.
The castle has been a ruin for a thousand years.[N 1]
A Feast for Crows
Dick Crabb suggests the smuggler's cove at the Whispers to Shagwell, Pyg, and Timeon, former members of the Brave Companions who are seeking transport from Westeros across the narrow sea. Dick neglects to tell Shagwell the Fool that ships have not visited the cove for thirty years, however. The three sellswords camp at the ruined castle.
Brienne of Tarth is in search of Sansa Stark, who had been in the company of another fool, Dontos Hollard. Thinking that the fool fooled by Dick had possibly been Dontos, Brienne hires Dick to escort her and Podrick Payne to the Whispers. After Brienne's party arrives at the ruins, Shagwell jumps down from the young weirwood and kills Dick. While Brienne slays Pyg and Timeon, Pod throws stones at Shagwell until he submits. Brienne has Shagwell dig a grave for Dick beneath the weirwood, and she kills the fool with her dagger when he suddenly attacks with a rock. Afterward, Ser Hyle Hunt joins Brienne and Podrick at the Whispers. Brienne brings the heads of the three sellswords to Maidenpool and leaves their bodies for crows.
Being they was just heads, they couldn't talk real loud, but they never shut up neither. When you're a head, talking's all you got to pass the day. So Crabb's keep got named the Whispers.
Dick: The Whispers. Have a listen. You can hear the heads.
Podrick: I hear them.Podrick: Waves don't whisper. It's heads.
Brienne: There are no heads. It's the waves you hear whispering.
—Dick Crabb, Podrick Payne, and Brienne Tarth
Chapters that take place at the Whispers
- ↑ Dick Crabb claims the Whispers have "been a ruin for a thousand years" (A Feast for Crows, Brienne III). It is unknown if this is an exact figure or if George R. R. Martin is being figurative.
- ↑ The Lands of Ice and Fire, Brienne's route on the Journeys map.
- ↑ 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 A Feast for Crows, Chapter 20, Brienne IV.
- ↑ 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 3.4 3.5 A Feast for Crows, Chapter 14, Brienne III.
- ↑ A Feast for Crows, Chapter 25, Brienne V.