As much as it pains me to do this i found something interesting that could help toward LDH's crackpot theory that varys is a shadowbinder or whatever. Its not much but in my current reread of ASOS, The chapter where davos returns to dragonstone, sallador saan is in the possession of a ship belonging to illyrio. Now its the assumption that he seized itwith his newfound powers from stannis, but what if it isnt. What is sallador saan is te envoy between illyrio and their agent on dragonstone. obviously in order for the varys/illyrio conspiracy to work they need fingeres everywhere, what is melisandre is their spy in stannis' court. To an exent that mihgt mean its a whole shadowbinder conpiracy thought i doubt it, though a connection is intriguing. Lets look at it this way, sallador saan, why is he with stannis, stannis started of never paying him, and continued to do that while he only had a fe hundred men. Any reason for a somewhat mercenary captain to stay? no. And next, the kings fleet is cut to ribbons, his newfound army crushed, and he flees back to dragonstone. and sallador saan still gets no money, yet he remains? the peice of paper he get saying he was in charge of blackwater bay is menaingless, he could just raid all the ships he wanted, and if stannis loses, whihc was likely, then it would never be authentic and hed just be raiding anyway. And can anyone find and comment from sallador or melisandre about the other? just to try and give some validation to this theory. see what theyre saying or what theyre not saying. Also varys was very quite on bringing the xistence of melisandre to the court in kings landing, coincidence? so theres some validation that she might be in on th eillyrio/varys plot.