Okay, outside of the fancy language, here’s the bottom line for me. Something Bran did in the future affected Hordor/Willis in the past. Something Bran did changed Willis into Hordor and he did it from the future. Even Hordor’s name comes from “hold the door” which was said in the future. The changed Willis heard these future words, the experience splintered his mind and he became an obsessive compulsive for the words “hold the door” which muddled into “Hordor.”
Did that change the history? Well, like anything else in the past we don’t know. We don’t know what history would have been like had it not been affected by Bran’s actions in the future. What Bran did to the past did not change history as Bran and we see it because what Bran did to history from the future is baked into history.
My wife is a novelist and has written one time travel novel called Bridge Over Time. The time travel mechanism is somewhat similar because only the consciences change time. Essentially a modern woman trades places in time (through a switch of their conscious minds) with her own great, great, great, great grandmother living in the 1810s. The story then follows both women as they adapt to their new time and fall in love with men their prior selves despised. But I digress.
A story teller for a time travel has essentially two choices.
- Whatever the time traveler does in the past is already baked into our history. This is limiting because the time traveler cannot do anything that would alter our understanding of history. Whatever happens has to remain consistent with our understanding of history and the characters’ understanding of history.
- The many worlds theory. The time traveler can change our history, creating alternative timelines from our own, essentially alternative worlds in parallel dimensions, or whatever.
My wife chose the first option and I believe so did Game of Thrones. Everything the time traveller from the future does is already part of our history. History does not change because the time travel itself became part of history.
Whatever you want to call Bran doing that changed Willis to Hordor, it was already a part of history, even if from our linear time perspective it had not yet happened. It would happen, and that is what matters. In this model time is like a river and while we generally flow in one direction, the entire river already exists, to include the places we will eventually be.