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It has been a while since I have read the books, but I’m trying to figure out who this character is.

He appears in the first chapter of book 4 (A Feast for Crows):

in his scene, a monk would give him a key in exchange for a piece of gold, but the scene finishes with him killing the monk (I never understood the importance of that part)

Is this character someone whom we already know? If not, is he the same guy who later leads Samwell Tarly to meet Archmaester Marwyn?

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    I'm not sure I understand what you're asking? What is the question? Please review your question to make it more clear. – Gunnar Södergren Oct 19 '14 at 12:23
  • @GunnarSödergren hope the edit makes, the question clearer – mido Oct 19 '14 at 15:06
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The man who appears in the prologue of AffC is in a lot of ways unknown. However, there are a few things to be noted, before we make any conclusions or assumptions.

  1. Pate (the monk in your question) is killed by this man (from now, I will call him Killer). Pate is the viewpoint character and while his death is not explicitly confirmed (he might have just fainted from his wounds), the viewpoint character of all other book prologues has died, so we can assume that Pate did too.
  2. Later, Samwell Tarly meets Pate, who is supposed to be dead. From this we can infer that Killer has killed Pate in order to assume his identity for some unknown purpose.
  3. Pate describes Killer incredibly similarly to the way Arya describes Jaqen H'ghar when he changes his face in Storm of Swords.

From 1 we can gather that Killer is a killer, obviously a rather cunning one, and that he does not really belong in Oldtown, as he is a stranger and an outsider. From 2, we can infer that Killer is most likely a Faceless Man, as he was able to assume Pate's identity. From 3, we can gather that Killer may be Jaqen H'ghar, who has gone to Oldtown for reasons which remain unknown.

Conclusion

While the true identity of Killer is not known or explicitly told, it can be assumed with some degree of certainty that he is a Faceless Man, perhaps Jaqen H'qhar, whose reason to be in Oldtown is important enough to kill a man and assume his identity (simply being a guest at Oldtown is not enough, he must infiltrate the Citadel).

This character is, however, not the person who leads Sam to Marwyn, although he is present (in the guise of Pate) while this is going on. The person who leads Sam to Archmaester Marwyn is Novice Alleras, who is widely believed, though not confirmed, to be Sarella Sand (a bastard daughter of Oberyn Martell) in disguise.

References

Pate describes Killer

He was just a man, and his face was just a face. A young man's face, ordinary, with full cheeks and the shadow of a beard. A scar showed faintly on his right cheek. He had a hooked nose, and a mat of dense black hair that curled around his ears. It was not a face Pate recognised.

A feast for Crows, Prologue, P. 17, ISBN: 978000648612-1

Arya describes the new Jaqen H'qhar

His cheeks grew fuller, his eyes closer; his nose hooked, a scar appeared on his right cheek where no scar had been before. And when he shook his head, his long straight hair, half red and half white, dissolved away to reveal a cap of tight black curls.

A Clash of Kings, Chapter 47, p. 691, ISBN:978055357990-1

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    Pate is a novice, not a "monk". The Citadel is not a monastery. The one who leads Sam to Marwyn is Alleras "the Sphinx", a.k.a. Sarella Sand, a Sand Snake, and one of Prince Oberyn's bastard daughters. – TLP Oct 20 '14 at 6:09
  • @TLP Yes, all very true. I refrained from using the word Novice, since the asker used the word monk, and simply referred to him as Pate. Regarding the character who leads Sam, you are indeed correct. I will update my answer to include this. – Gunnar Södergren Oct 20 '14 at 7:18
  • It's hard to believe Marwyn would waste time with the real Pate. Does he know that "Pate" is an impostor? – TheMathemagician Oct 30 '14 at 16:54
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    @TheMathemagician Faceless Men become the person they are impersonating and tend to do a very good job. Jaqen-Pate would have performed really well and moved up the ranks - thus fulfilling his probable primary objective. – Möoz Feb 12 '15 at 1:20
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    @GunnarSödergren Another clue that Pate was killed by a FM is that he used the same trick to kill Pate as Arya did with the insurance salesman - with the poisoned coin. – Möoz Feb 12 '15 at 1:22

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