1. For starters, I can’t seem to gather why people hesitate to believe Varys is a Targaryen loyalist? On page 636 of a GOT, while sitting in his cell beneath the red keep, Eddard Stark and Varys engaged in the following dialogue.
Ned: "Just as you let me believe you were mine. Tell me, Lord Varys, who do you truly serve?"
Varys: "Why, the realm, my good lord, how ever would you doubt that? I serve the realm, and the realm needs peace."
Initially of course, on your first read through of the series, you have every reason to doubt his statement or scoff at the notion of his intentions being peace, and his motivations being that which best serves the realm. He's the master of whispers, painted as devious and void of scruples, as manipulative, treacherous and deceitful. Obviously, he doesn't truly serve the realm, or does he? Have his actions not supported his service to the Targaryen's from the very beginning?
Was it not he that urged Mad King Aerys to keep his gates closed to Tywin and The Lannisters? Did he not warn Jorah of the assassination attempts on Danny’s life? Did he and Illiro not arrange for Danny to marry the horselord, whom was convinced to cross the sea and conquer westeros before he died? He and Illirio have served all remaining Targaryen's; Aegon, Viserys, and Daenerys, and in some fashion, they've aided each of them. Illirio housed, protected, and served all three of them at one point; and is responsible for gifting Dany the dragon eggs she'll one day rule Westeros with. They saw to the education and tutelage of young Aegon through his fathers best friend, and even Viserys was offered board in Pentos with Illiro while Danny traveled with her Khal. They've given them Dragons gold, armies, ships, protection, and even eggs. They've even killed their enemies.(Kevan)
I've seen people cite Varys whispering to Aerys and stirring enmity between Rhaegar and his father for reasons to question his loyalty. And they may have a point if everything he whispered weren't true. Per Jamie, Rheagar did intend on usurping his father in some fashion upon returning from the war, justified or not. Varys played no part in Aeyrs madness, that seed was planted during his confinement in Duskendale, and was fostered and blossomed through the properties of his blood.
Others I've seen suggest their actions are all an act, a ruse, and that they're Blackfyre apologists or that Illirio is Aegon's father. This, I find to be as farfetched a theory I've read on these boards. There's simply no proof to support this claim, and their actions specifically speak against this. If Illirio wanted Dany and Viserys incapacitated in way of his Blackfyre "son", he would have had their throats slit when they resided in his home. He would have made Dany a bed slave and thrown her brother into the sea. He would have done all he could to ensure a Blackfyre would sit the throne instead of a Targaryen, but instead he does all he can to assist the very people he's supposed to oppose, even going as far as to send his "son" to beg the Queens hand.
Least we forget how fondly Illiro spoke of Dany...
"Fear not, my little friend. The blood of Aegon the Dragon flows in her veins."
"Viserys was Mad Aerys's son, just so. Daenerys... Daenerys is quite different. The frightened child in my manse died on the Dothraki sea, and was reborn in blood and fire. This dragon queen who wears her name is a true Targaryen."
People note the Golden Company and its histories as evidence that Young Griff is truly a Blackfyre in disguise. How can this be when the Golden Company had broken its contract and was marching on Volantis with the intent of assisting Daenerys prior to knowing of Aegon’s appearance? Aegon himself was seeking out Dany as a possible suitor prior to receiving council from Tyrion to prove his worth by turning west and conquering, as opposed to begging for the Queens hand. Harry Strickland, the company's leader was hesitant to even fight, especially if it meant crossing the narrow sea. And prior to even all of that, Illirio flat out stated this wasn't the Golden company of old, and that they and Dany had common cause.
Tyrion: "How did you convince the Golden Company to take up the cause of our sweet queen when they have spent so much of their history fighting against the Targaryens?"
Illirio: "Black or red, a dragon is still a dragon. When Maelys the Monstrous died upon the Stepstones, is was the end of the male line of house Blackfyre. And Daeneyrs will give the exiles what Bittersteel and the Blackfyres never could. She will take them home."
Even if we were to operate under the assumption that Aegon is a fake, and is indeed a Blackfyre, what exactly are his motivations or endgame(Dunk and Egg series implies a desire for eventual Blackfyre/Targaryen reconciliation)? House Blackfyre is dead, and has been dead for 4 decades. What glory can Aegon win them? Moreover, the only thing that separates the black dragon from the red is their name and sigil, they are of the same blood, and their blood was all but vanquished from Westeros by traitors and usurpers. This is not a 100 years past, or even 40. The Blackfyre's and Targaryen's have common cause, and the former knows as well as we do that they cannot stand against Dragons. Taking on Dany would be madness.
And the most damning evidence of all? Well, there's two things. Varys epilogue, and Tyrion's having guessed that young Griff was Aegon.
Kevan: "Aegon? Dead. He's dead".
Varys: "No. He is here. Aegon has been shaped for rule since before he could walk. He has been trained at arms, poetry. A septa has instructed him in the faith since he was old enough to understand them. He has lived with fisherfolk, worked with his hands, swum in rivers and mended nets and learned to wash his own clothes at need. He can fish and cook and bind up a wound, he knows what it is like to be hungry, to be hunted, to be afraid. Aegon knows that kingship is his duty, and that a king must put his people first, and live and rule for them."
No, I'm not convinced he was lying to a dead man. He had no logical reason to do so given the situation, and I'm hardly of the belief that the "Aegon" he's referring to is anybody but the Aegon he carried out his cradle 16 years earlier.(what motivations would he have for deceiving a dead man? Makes no sense)
Tyrion: "The blue hair makes your eyes seem blue... I must admit, you have noble features for a dead boy"
Aegon: "I'm not dead"
Tyrion: "How not? My lord father wrapped your corpse in a crimson cloak and laid you down beside your sister at the foot of the iron throne, his gift to the new king."
Tyrion, one of the most clever and learned(particularly when it comes to Targaryens and Dragons) characters in the series, mistook a Targareyn for a common boy of Lys? And not just any Targaryen, no, he figures this is the dead son of the late Rhaegar. This, while the boys silver/white/blond hair was dyed blue, mind you, and he was disguised. Never mind Jon Connington, whose raised the boy since he was 5(4 year gap), and served both his grandsire and sire. No, he’d haven’t the slightest clue what a Targaryen of royal birth was supposed to look like.
2. In order to harbor the belief that Aegon is false, you must also believe Quathe's prophecies to be true, and they've already proven faulty.
"The glass candles are burning. Soon comes the pale mare, and after her the others. Kraken and dark flame, lion and griffin, the sun's son and the mummer's dragon. Trust none of them. Remember the Undying. Beware the perfumed seneschal"
Well, for starters, neither Illiro nor Varys were mummers. Illiro was a water dancer and Varys was the king of thieves. Furthermore, being a mummers dragon doesn’t necessarily mean you’re a fake, but can just as easily be interpreted as being the dragon of a mummer. A real dragon, but the pawn of another. In any case...
Beware the Kraken, right? That she should, for Victarion may eventually reveal himself an adversary. Though I believe it obvious that he'll join or assist her, rather than war against her. Especially not while the threat of the combined forces of Slavers Bay remain present, with the fleet of old Volantis creeping behind. Moreover, it's obvious it'll be the oars of the Ironborn that sail Dany's armies to Westeros.
Beware the Dark Flame? He was specifically sent out by a council of his superiors to aid Dany in her mission, and thus far, he's proven himself a maestro. The red priests are behind her, as Benerro so clearly voiced. Trust him? perhaps not, but she'd be wise to heed his council.
Beware Tyrion? From what I've gathered from reading these boards, many of you believe Tyrion will be one of the three heads of the dragon(I disagree). If that's the case, why should she fear him? We know Tyrion, sly fellow that he is, and though he can be a little monster at times, do any of us believe he'll conspire against Dany, rather than with her?
The Griffin? The Girffin turned around and went the other way, and besides that fact, is actively dying. There's a legitimate chance he wont live long enough to meet the Dragon queen, let alone spoil whatever her plans are. Never mind the fact that based on his POV, his intentions and motivations seem just, and he's forever been loyal to the Targaryen's.
And here's where it gets ever stickier. People assume that the Sun's Son is a reference towards Quentyn Martell, while the Mummers Dragon is Aegon. Why is that? People forget, but Aegon is also a son of Dorne. His mother, Princess Ellia, was and is Prince Doran's sister, and it'll be Dorne who first raises their banners when he hoist his own above Storms End. They're both children of the sun, no one can dispute that, but only one has proven themselves a false dragon.
ADWD pg. 924
Selmy: "What happened when you tried to take the Dragons? Tell me."
Drinkwater: "Quentyn told the Tattered Prince he could control them. It was in his blood, he said. He had Targaryen blood."
Selmy: "Blood of the Dragon."
3. I’m not quite sure how people can question whether or not the switch were possible? Aegon was a 1 year old hostage whom was seldom seen(confined to a tower for however long Rhaegar was dead), while Varys knowledge and familiarity of the red keep is well documented. In addition, he commands an army of small children whom he has a part in traning, giving him access to a plethora of children of multiple looks, ethnicities, and cultures.
This is the same man that was the dungeons goaler for 15 years without anyone knowing. He helped Tyrion escape from a cell deep within the castle, and before that, was smuggling the dwarf around Kings Landing to his Shae. Of late, he’s been hiding within plain sight, and recently assassinated the King reagent and Maester Pycelle within the keep, after a meeting with his hand and justicar, using a rogue force of children.
In Book 1 of a GOT, Varys snuck Illiro Mopatis within the red keep in the hall amongst the dragon skulls. Yet, no one noticed this, nor believed Arya when she told them. Illirio Mopatis, a foreign fat man of extravagant dress and extreme girth, and people question if he could switch out a babe without notice? Hell, Petyr Bealish snuck out and smuggled away Sansa from Kings Landing during the kings wedding, amidst thousands of guest, and she’s beautiful, tall, and red headed. Ramsay and Roose Bolton have half the north convinced that a girl 3 years her senior, and that looks little like a Stark, was in fact Ned Starks youngest daughter. Gilly tricked everyone on the wall by taking Mance’s baby while leaving her own, a fact Sam failed to realize until months later. And the discovery wasn’t made because of how the baby looked, but because Gilly persisted with her grief.
To pretend as if a switch of an infant baby were impossible and or even improbable given what we’ve seen in this series makes little sense. Who was there to deny the child with the crushed face(It would be highlly difficult for the 8ft monster known as the mountain, whose known for his brutality and other-wordly strength, to crush an infants face, right?) Tywin, Ned, or Robert? Please. If anything, Varys has repeatedly shown himself a master of the shadows, and any doubt to whether or not he could sneak about the red keep, in this case, to switch out a babe, should be answered and dismissed by his already proven prowess. And please spare me the, “Did she now care about Rhaenys?”, or “Ellia wouldn’t trust Varys” arguments. All heirs are kept apart during sacks, and Rhaenys specifically fled to the room of her father in an obvious attempt to seek shelter. Moreover, no woman can sit the iron throne, so the threat of Rhaenys being killed was less than that of Aegon. Ellia had no choice but to trust Varys, or concede to the switch. For one, I don’t doubt this ploy was conceived by Rheagar should he die(his life revolved around the Ptwp), and once he had, it was either trust Varys or watch her son perish.
4. Prior to reaching the room of the Undying Ones, Danny traveled down a hall and looked behind doors that opened up to visions of things past and soon to come. They weren’t cryptic nor where they presented as riddles, they were simply visions. People typically speak of the vision of the mummers dragon when talking of the House of Undying, but one vision, the 5th, is oft ignored when it comes to discussions of whether or not Aegon is truly Rhaegar's son. But I believe it's telling, and in my opinion, supports Aegon's legitimacy.
"Viserys, was her first thought the next time she paused, but a second glance told her otherwise. The man had her brother's hair, but he was taller, and his eyes were a dark indigo rather than lilac. "Aegon," he said to a woman nursing a newborn babe in a great wooden bed. "What better name for a king?" "Will you make a song for him?" the woman asked. "He has a song," the man replied. "He is the prince that was promised, and his is the song of ice and fire." He looked up when he said it and his eyes met Dany's, and it seemed as if he saw her standing there beyond the door. "There must be one more," he said, though whether he was speaking to her or the woman in the bed she could not say. "The dragon has three heads." He went to the window seat, picked up a harp, and ran his fingers lightly over its silvery strings. Sweet sadness filled the room as man and wife and babe faded like the morning mist, only the music lingering behind to speed her on her way."
Aegon is the harp to Danny and Jon's song of ice and fire. The Prince who was Promised, and Azor Azhai aren't the same, but separate entities that will join to become the three heads of the Dragon. And Rhaegar knew.
The above was shortly before he ran off with Lyanna, before Jon was conceived. He had two children, and needed one more to fulfill the prophecy, but Ellia was no longer fertile.(The above convinces me she knew of Rhaegar's plight, and went along with it. This was revealed in ADWD) The lone wolf, the black bastard of the wall is who he was referring to when he looked Danny in her eyes and told her there must be one more. And that, besides his love for her, was the motivating factor behind him spiriting Lyanna Stark away. Readers think the decision rash, and it was, because he understood the necessity of the third head. The single difference is that his sister took the position of his daughter, otherwise, the three heads of the dragon are here, and the prophecy is slowly coming to fruition.
Some have carried on thinking it's Tyrion whose the third head; I disagree. Tywin is his father and his blood is that of a Lannister, and though the shadow he cast may be large, even Lions kneel before Dragons. Take Tywin from Tyrion, and the latter loses much of his development. He's defined by the relationships he has with his kin, particularly and especially his father, snatch that away and it cheapens his character. In other words, He wont be mounting any Dragons anytime soon, least he end up like Quentyn Martell. Furthermore, I very much doubt Martin will try and surprise us with another Targaryen, especially one that's so clearly a lion.
300 years ago three Targaryen's, one male and two female, landed on Westeros with three dragons and conquered it through fire and blood. 300 years later, three targaryen's, one female and two male, land on Westeros with three dragons and conquer it through fire and blood. And there’s was the song of ice and fire.
Drogon - Danny
Rhaegal - Aegon
Viserion - Jon snow
Edited by Bravely Done, 28 June 2012 - 06:53 AM.