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Lost Melnibonean

House Cargyll had Targaryen roots.

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We first heard of House Cargyll at the Ashford Tourney in The Hedge Knight...


Marbrand, Mallister, Cargyll, Westerling, Swann, Mullendore, Hightower, Florent, Frey, Penrose, Stokeworth, Darry, Parren, Wylde; it seemed as though every lordly house of the west and south had sent a knight or three to Ashford to see the fair maid and brave the lists in her honor.

The Hedge Knight

But we did not meet any members of the house at Ashford. We did not hear about the house again until we read The Princess and the Queen, and we learned that the famous twins Arryk and Erryk were Cargylls...


Then as now, the Sworn Brotherhood of the Kingsguard consisted of seven knights, men of proven loyalty and undoubted prowess who had taken solemn oaths to devote their lives to defending the king’s person and kin. Only five of the white cloaks were in King’s Landing at the time of Viserys’s death; Ser Criston himself, Ser Arryk Cargyll, Ser Rickard Thorne, Ser Steffon Darklyn, and Ser Willis Fell. Ser Erryk Cargyll (twin to Ser Arryk) and Ser Lorent Marbrand, with Princess Rhaenyra on Dragonstone, remained unaware and uninvolved as their brothers-in-arms went forth into the night to rouse the members of the small council from their beds.

The Princess and the Queen

Of course, we were looking forward to reading about Arryk and Erryk...


Bran was going to be a knight himself someday, one of the Kingsguard. Old Nan said they were the finest swords in all the realm. There were onlyseven of them, and they wore white armor and had no wives or children, but lived only to serve the king. Bran knew all the stories. Their names were like music to him. Serwyn of the Mirror Shield. Ser Ryam Redwyne. Prince Aemon the Dragonknight. The twins Ser Erryk and Ser Arryk, who had died on one another’s swords hundreds of years ago, when brother fought sister in the war the singers called the Dance of the Dragons. The White Bull, Gerold Hightower. Ser Arthur Dayne, the Sword of the Morning. Barristan the Bold. 

Bran II, Game 8

Would they really die with tears on their cheeks?


Prince Tommen sobbed. “You mew like a suckling babe,” his brother hissed at him. “Princes aren’t supposed to cry.”

“Prince Aemon the Dragonknight cried the day Princess Naerys wed his brother Aegon,” Sansa Stark said, “and the twins Ser Arryk and Ser Erryk died with tears on their cheeks after each had given the other a mortal wound.”

Tyrion IX, Clash 41

Unfortunately,nthe singers seembtonhave been more interested in the duel than the historians...


After the coronation, the remaining Kingsguard escorted Aegon to his mount, a splendid creature with gleaming golden scales and pale pink wing membranes. Sunfyre was the name given this dragon of the golden dawn. Munkun tells us the king flew thrice around the city before landing inside the walls of the Red Keep. Ser Arryk Cargyll led His Grace into the torchlit throne room, where Aegon II mounted the steps of the Iron Throne before a thousand lords and knights. Shouts rang through the hall. 


And so the dance began, as the princess called a council of her own. “The black council,” setting it against the “green council” of King’s Landing. Rhaenyra herself presided, with her uncle and husband Prince Daemon. Her three sons were present with them, though none had reached the age of manhood (Jace was fifteen, Luke fourteen, Joffrey twelve). Two Kingsguard stood with them: Ser Erryk Cargyll, twin to Ser Arryk, and the westerman, Ser Lorent Marbrand. 


Cooler heads on the green council wished to parlay. “The princess must be made to see that her cause is hopeless,” Grand Maester Orwyle said. “Brother should not war against sister. Send me to her, that we may talk and reach an amicable accord.”

Aegon would not hear of it. Septon Eustace tells us that His Grace accused the grand maester of disloyalty and spoke of having him thrown into a black cell “with your black friends.” But when the two queens—his mother Queen Alicent and his wife Queen Helaena—spoke in favor of Orwyle’s proposal, the king gave way reluctantly. So Grand Maester Orwyle was dispatched across Blackwater Bay under a peace banner, leading a retinue that included Ser Arryk Cargyll of the Kingsguard and Ser Gwayne Hightower of the gold cloaks, along with a score of scribes and septons.

The Princess and the Queen

We would get a richer account in The World of Ice and Fire...


Even the Kingsguard were enlisted into the strife. Ser Criston Cole dispatched Ser Arryk Cargyll to Dragonstone with the intention of having him infiltrate the citadel in the guise of his twin, Ser Erryk. There, he was to kill Rhaenyra (or her children; accounts differ). Yet as chance would have it, Ser Erryk and Ser Arryk met by happenstance in one of the halls of the citadel. The singers tell us that they professed their love for one another before the steel clashed, and fought with love and duty in their hearts for an hour before they died weeping in one another’s arms. The account of Mushroom, who claims to have witnessed the duel, says the reality was far more brutal: they condemned one another for traitors, and within moments had mortally wounded each other. 

Aegon II, The World of Ice and Fire

Non-canon sources tell us that Cargyll was a house in the Crownlands sworn directly to the Iron Throne...


The house was in existence as recently as the year 209, the last of Daeron II’s reign, but died out in intervening years under unknown circumstances.


Here's the kicker: The house blazoned its arms with a golden goose on bendy sinister black and red...


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