One of the largest schisms to run through this forum is the eternal (or at least until tWoW comes out) dispute about Faegon’s true parentage. Some people on the forum believe him to be real, others think that he’s just some random Valyrian looking chap and the majority of posters follows what I like to describe as the “Classic Blackfyre theory”.
Neither of these origin stories is satisfying to me and several others. All of them are missing something, even the classic BF theory is not fully convincing to us. That’s why some of us came up with a new theory, which we have been spreading for several months now, and we thought that it was about time that it got its own thread.
So, here it goes: the Brightfyre theory is basically an expansion on the classic Blackfyre theory.
Now the classic BF theory states that Faegon is the result of the union between Illyrio Mopatis and Serra Blackfyre (which makes Varys a Blackfyre as well).
According to me and several other posters this scenario does not fully utilize all the available clues, parallels and isn’t as thematically grounded as our own alternative the Brightfyre theory.
In our alternative Faegon is the child of a union between Illyrio Blackfyre* and Serra Brightflame** (With Varys as Serra's brother), thus producing a child (Faegon) that unites the claims of both lines in one person.
Now let us look into clues that inspired our little theory:
1) Blackfyre heritage
We have all seen this evidence a thousand times so I’ll just be quick about it. If I have forgotten anything than please comment and I’ll edit it in.
_ The Dragon sign in AFFC
_Faegon being supported by the GC
_Illyrio’s “BF have died out in the male line” comment (implying that there are still descendants from the female line).
_The Black Dragon mention in Moqorro’s vision
2) Brightflame heritage
_ The connection to Lys where Aerion spend his years in exile
_ Jon’s mention of Aerion’s trueborn son in ACOK
_ The Bright Dragon mention in Moqorro’s vision
_ These two quotes link Egg, Aerion and Varys together:
_ Another interesting find brought to you by Yolkboy and J. Stargaryen:
=> I personally favor Varys and Serra being descendants of Aerion's trueborn son. But there is also an interesting SSM about the possibility of Aerion having fathered bastards in Lys. Some people therefore favor a Brightflame bastard as the ancestor of Varys and Serra
3) Illyrio as Faegon’s dad
_ He clearly loves the boy, which is strange since he was really indifferent about the two other Targs
_ The boy clothes in his manse
_ Perhaps the Statue (it could be off Illyrio himself)
4) Varys and Serra as Brightflame’s
_ Serra has Valyrian Looks
_ Varys shaves his head, just like Egg does in the D&E tales. Best explanation is that he’s trying to hide some Valyrian traits there
_ Serra’s (and therefore Varys’s) connection to Lys [uPDATE: in GoT 04X06; Varys has been confirmed as being a Lyseni. It's from the show and thus circumstancial evidence, but it points in the direction we deem the most likely]
_ Varys castration (power of kingsblood)
5) General remarks, parallels, etc.
_ Illyrio was a warrior in his youth. We know martial prowess is one of the most important parts of House Blackfyre
_ Illyrio’s description matches nicely with that of Aegon IV the Unworthy (he’s fat, corrupt, etc.) when you lay them side by side. Just like Faegon seems to have a striking resemblance to the original Daemon Blackfyre. For more information on this particular clue, check out the second post of this thread (made by LordToo-Fat-to-Sit-a-Horse).
_ In THK, the first time we are really introduced to Aerion’s madness is when we see him abuse his power to manhandle a bunch of mummers because the dragon in their puppet show died. Therefore there is a lot of irony in Aerion’s descendant being a mummer himself (Varys) and is about to bring his own mummer’s dragon into the game
=> [Added by OP: In tSS the last member of House Osgrey (loyal Blackfyre supporters) marries Lady Rohanne Webber (Sigil: a spider. They supported Daeron the Good against Daemon). Now, who do we know that is constantly identified with a "spider" (hint, hint Varys). In this pairing from tSS we could clearly see forshadowing towards a marriage between the House of our own Varys the spider and House Blackfyre]
_ It ties up loose ends. It is often (and quite correctly) stated that due to the Blackfyre’s enormous impact on the D&E tales they are bound to return in some form during ASOIAF. The same could be said of Aerion, who’s threatening presence still looms large over Egg, even after he’s banished.
_Another addition pointing to Targ blood for Varys:
_ Yet again a great find:
_ There is a certain irony in the fact that the Brightfyre theory makes Faegon’s claim even better in the sense that in unites both the older Targaryen and the BF claim, thus you could say that this trumps the claim Dany and Jon have.
_ It better explains Faegon’s full on Valyrian traits. Genetics might be sketchy in Martinverse but when two parents have strong Targaryen ancestry it’s much more likely to get a kid with the full Targ look
_ Thematically, a marriage alliance between the Scions of House BF (Illyrio) and House Brightflame makes a lot more sense than “two buddies teaming up to take down the system and then one buddy falls for the other ones sister” (which sounds like the premise of a bad heist movie). We have seen that alliances sealed by marriage are hugely important and an integral part of the fabric of this series (e.g. Rickard’s Southron ambitions, Ned and Jon marrying Cat and Lysa, Bobby B marrying Cersei, Dany marrying Drogo, etc.) and it would make a lot more sense if the Illyrio-Serra union happened along this line as well.
_ It better explains Illyrio’s trust in the GC and his motivation in general. We know he doesn’t really think highly of Westerosi and that he seems to symbolize the greedy free city merchant class. So, it really seems strange that he’s as convinced of the GC support as he seems to be. If he was just a merchant he would be a lot less certain of himself. I also highly doubt that he would risk his only son (whom he clearly loves) in order to claim the IT. If Illyrio wants a lot of power he would be better off trying to take over a Free City.
_ The Classic BF theory does not explain how on earth two BF descendants became slaves in Lys of all places. The Brightfyre theory on the other hand explains why Varys and Serra would have their connection to Lys.
_ yet another addition:
_ Another good find if we take drafts into account:
_ Another interesting find:
That was all I could come up with. There is definitely more stuff out there and I hope this thread will unearth some more hidden gems. Feel free to contribute :D
TL:DR Illyrio Blackfyre + Serra Brightflame = Faegon
[* Illyrio Blackfyre would be the child of a sister/daughter/niece of Maelys the Monstrous with some non-Blackfyre man (Perhaps one of Maelys's allies amongst the ninepenny kings. He's a Blackfyre because of course he would take his mother's name eventhough he now hides behind the name Mopatis]
[**I’m well aware that there is no such thing as a House Brightflame, Aerion’s descendants are Targaryen but to make things go more smoothly I have opted to consistently speak about Brightflame when talking about Aerion's descendants]