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Lord Varys

The Book of Swords - The Sons of the Dragon SPOILERS

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18 minutes ago, Lord Varys said:

So what? Does this mean the Andals and septons living there adopted or grew to tolerate the barbaric ways of the rulers of that island? If you claim that, you would have to prove it.

What we actually do know is that the Targaryens there were actually capering and sucking up to the Andals and the Faith considering that they made those costly idols of the Seven out of the wood of the ships that carried them to Dragonstone. I guess those were not necessarily made during Aenar's or Gaemon's reign - the ships could have been used for another couple of decades after the arrival - but it seems likely that they were during the reign of Lord Aegon.

Reread TSotD. The High Septon really commands all branches of the Faith. That is why a group of Warrior's Sons actually thinks they should continue resisting Maegor even after he won the Trial of Seven. Because they are forced to obey the commands of the High Septon.

We also know the Most Devout are a group of people with more authority than the average septon and less authority than the High Septon.

We also know that heresy is an existent crime - as is witchcraft - and that both are severely punished. We also know that the Faith can expel a member of its order. We also know that the Faith has its own courts which usually sits in judgment over members of the Faith. That means there are institutions within the Faith to discipline members of the Faith.

If that is not policing I don't know what is policing.

Well, then those Catholics all became heretics. England was just some insignificant island at the time.

But in a sense Henry VIII is sort of how Maegor dealt with the Faith, too. He took control of the Church in his country. In Westeros Maegor took control of the entire Faith.

They politely overlooked Aegon's blasphemous marriages. If a septon had married Aegon to his sisters one could assume that the High Septon would have declared that marriage invalid before the Conquest. Either when the marriage took place. Or when Aegon sent out all his ravens. At that time nobody could know that the Targaryens would win this war, right? So there would have been no reason not to denounce Aegon's marriage the way the later High Septon denounced and condemned Maegor's second marriage, right?

But if Aegon never married his sister-wives in any of the Westerosi ways it wouldn't have really been the business of the Faith to condemn that. It would have only become an issue - and it did become an issue - after Aegon became the king of Westeros. Then the Targaryen had really pay lip service to the Faith and its rules since it was the majority religion of Westeros. And that's what they did. Incest and polygamy where the only part of the 'religious sphere' where Aegon could not possibly accommodate the Faith.

And why on earth would Aegon want to be married in the Westerosi ways on his island? And why should the Faith condemn his Valyrian marriages if he was not really part of their sphere of influence. The Faith also does not run around condemning Dothraki marriages, or anything.

How do you know that? And how do you know that the Faith did not have the power to discipline its own on Dragonstone? Do you know that there were not any Poor Fellows on the island? Do you know whether there was a small contingent of Warrior's Sons there?

Comparing the Targaryens on Dragonstone to the situation in Stannis' days is comparing apples and oranges.

Prior to the Conquest the High Septon actually and literally ruled the Faith. There were seven kingdoms but only one High Septon. He was the ultimate authority of the Faith, and all the Andal kings and lords would have bowed to him in religious matters.

It is King Maegor and his fire-breathing dragons that break the power of the Faith. And Jaehaerys I and his fire-breathing dragons - who are there as a remainder what would happen if people resisted, but not unleashed by this nice guy king - complete the work. Maegor's power was so great that many lords who might have stood with the Faith dared not to do that because they feared the dragons.

But the dragons are long dead. While the Faith does not regain its military orders after 153 AC, it still commands the hearts and souls of most of the people. The only form of real education the smallfolk gets comes through septons and septas. If a king and the Faith are at issue today - like Stannis is - then the chances that the Faith is actually defended against this blasphemy by quite a lot of people.

If people no longer fear dragonfire - because they are no dragons - they can push the powers in charge much harder. That is how and why the surviving Poor Fellows could seize power so quickly and efficiently. There was no one to oppose or intimidate them.

Aerea and Rhaella are alive and well at the end of Maegor's reign. Aerea is with her mother, and Rhaella at Oldtown, training to become a septa as per Maegor's orders. Whether she actually did become a septa is unclear. I'm inclined to doubt it but you never know.

It would be interesting to know that, yes. But we don't. What we do know is that Lord Aerion must have been dead for quite a while. He seems to have died not just before the Conquest, but quite some time before that, perhaps when Aegon was around twenty, or perhaps when he was still in his late teens. The text indicates that Aegon Targaryen made the choice to participate in the war against Volantis at a time when he was already in charge of Dragonstone. He did not act as a representative of his father, or anything of that sort.

But it would, of course, possible that Aerion was incapacitated for quite some time before he died eventually, with Aegon seizing power despite the fact that his father was still alive. Say, if Aerion had suffered a severe stroke, or if Aerion was suffering from dementia in old age, etc.

One assumes that death is the more likely scenario.

Valaena Velaryon could technically have been still alive during and after the Conquest. She would just have been the Dowager Lady of Dragonstone then.

Her case is a similar mystery as the whereabouts and death of Queen Shaera Targaryen. We know she survived Summerhall and lived during the reign of Jaehaerys II. Considering that no one ever said she was as frail and sickly as her brother-husband one should assume that she lived at least throughout some years of the first half of the reign of Aerys II, and perhaps even longer. She could have retreated to Dragonstone to live out the remainder of her life far from court.

Well, that is not really true. Jaehaerys I had nine children living to adulthood but as I've said only four of those children had children of their own, and since Alyssa and Baelon married each other that makes only three branches of House Targaryen, reduced to two when Aemma Arryn married Prince Viserys. Prince Aemon had only a daughter, and Alyssa-Baelon effectively only two sons who had either no children (Daemon) or just daughter (Viserys) by the time Jaehaerys I died.

The future of House Targaryen was not exactly secured by the children of Jaehaerys I. And none of his children seemed to have survived the old man anyway. We know when Aemon and Baelon and Daella and Maegelle and Gael died. We know that Viserra predeceased her royal parents. Considering that Princess Alyssa is never mentioned anywhere aside from being Baelon's wife it is quite likely that she, too, was long dead by the time of the Great Council, perhaps dying in childbirth. The only ones who may have been still alive by the time of Jaehaerys' own death are Archmaester Vaegon and Saera, and they were both effectively dead as Targaryens. One had become an archmaester and the other had ran away and become a brothel owner (and presumably a whore earlier in her career). But even they might have been dead in 103 AC.

House Targaryen sort of recovers during the reign of Viserys I with him, Daemon, Rhaenyra, and eventually even Aegon the Elder having quite a few children of their own. But the Dance cuts all that short.

It is a pity George played it that way. The story could have greatly profited if there had been a couple of adult grandchildren and great-grandchildren - and perhaps even an aged child - of Jaehaerys I around during the Dance. Having so many children dragonriders was somewhat silly.

Those nine children could really have laid the groundwork for something bigger. But they did not. Aside from the Velaryon branch there was never a single acknowledged Targaryen cadet branch in existence which laster longer than two generations - later we have the Plumms and the Lothstons, thanks to Aegon IV, but they are only unofficial cadet branches.

What would have been the harm in giving Aenys and Maegor a little brother? Or Jaehaerys and Alysanne?

Well that's actually something interesting about Jaehaerys's kids. Of 13. 4 die young, 1 given over to the Maesters young, 2 given over to the septas though one ran away to Essos, then 2 die mysteriously or strangely, and 1 dies birthing a child while she's young. With only 3 living to adult hood (30's). Which of those, Rhaenys, who's passed over for Viserys. The Viserys, Daemon, and Aegon who dies young? (not mentioned in Rogue Prince.")

Considering this all happens after the faith loses its army, it seems the Septons adapted their methods. 

So no, i guess they didn't really save it as much as the potential of what they could do.

And yea, during the dance there is a burst of children, and a sudden conflict arising with succession which leads to family on family killing. An issue of succession of Men over Women brought on by the Faith of the Seven. With House Hightower at the center. Who are also at the center of Maegor's story. The High Septon of Maegor's time even being a Hightower as he put forth his niece Ceryse for Maegor to wed. 

 

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42 minutes ago, RhaegoTheUnborn said:

Anyone else skip the other stories just to go to pg.477 ? 

Me.

Regarding Lodos II: Wouldn't a simpler explanation be that there had been a Lodos I somewhere in the pre-conquest era?

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5 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

So what? Does this mean the Andals and septons living there adopted or grew to tolerate the barbaric ways of the rulers of that island? If you claim that, you would have to prove it.

Adopted, not necessarily. Grew to tolerate? They had no alternative - toleration or martyrdom.

5 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

What we actually do know is that the Targaryens there were actually capering and sucking up to the Andals and the Faith considering that they made those costly idols of the Seven out of the wood of the ships that carried them to Dragonstone. I guess those were not necessarily made during Aenar's or Gaemon's reign - the ships could have been used for another couple of decades after the arrival - but it seems likely that they were during the reign of Lord Aegon.

Reread TSotD. The High Septon really commands all branches of the Faith. That is why a group of Warrior's Sons actually thinks they should continue resisting Maegor even after he won the Trial of Seven. Because they are forced to obey the commands of the High Septon.

Forced, or believe they should? Because the Faith Militant who kept resisting after the change of High Septon obviously were not forced to obey.

5 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

We also know the Most Devout are a group of people with more authority than the average septon and less authority than the High Septon.

We also know that heresy is an existent crime - as is witchcraft - and that both are severely punished. We also know that the Faith can expel a member of its order. We also know that the Faith has its own courts which usually sits in judgment over members of the Faith. That means there are institutions within the Faith to discipline members of the Faith.

If that is not policing I don't know what is policing.

What we see in medieval Europe. Landscape full of bishops and archbishops - whenever you talk about local politics, it´s relevant where the seats of church lords were, and who the incumbents were.

In Westeros we see, it´s low status village septons, then chaplains... and then nothing between ordinary septon and Most Devout cooped up at Oldtown or King´s Landing to be rounded up. "Who´s Who" names bannermen and maesters, but not leading septons.

5 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

Or when Aegon sent out all his ravens. At that time nobody could know that the Targaryens would win this war, right? So there would have been no reason not to denounce Aegon's marriage the way the later High Septon denounced and condemned Maegor's second marriage, right?

Yes, but that´s the question of perception of Faith´s neutrality. What do you think would happen to Faith if the worshippers of Seven in Dorne decided to worship just the gods and their books, but regard the "High Septon" as mere foreign chaplain irrelevant to their faith?

5 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

But if Aegon never married his sister-wives in any of the Westerosi ways it wouldn't have really been the business of the Faith to condemn that. It would have only become an issue - and it did become an issue - after Aegon became the king of Westeros. Then the Targaryen had really pay lip service to the Faith and its rules since it was the majority religion of Westeros. And that's what they did. Incest and polygamy where the only part of the 'religious sphere' where Aegon could not possibly accommodate the Faith.

Hoares also ruled greenlands, and kept saltwives. Harren built a sept in Harrenhal. But did he personally worship there, or was it exclusively for the use of his greenland retainers?

5 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

And why on earth would Aegon want to be married in the Westerosi ways on his island? And why should the Faith condemn his Valyrian marriages if he was not really part of their sphere of influence. The Faith also does not run around condemning Dothraki marriages, or anything.

How do you know that? And how do you know that the Faith did not have the power to discipline its own on Dragonstone? Do you know that there were not any Poor Fellows on the island? Do you know whether there was a small contingent of Warrior's Sons there?

If there was and they had the arrogance to try disciplining their own, dragons would have made short work of them.

5 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

Comparing the Targaryens on Dragonstone to the situation in Stannis' days is comparing apples and oranges.

Prior to the Conquest the High Septon actually and literally ruled the Faith. There were seven kingdoms but only one High Septon. He was the ultimate authority of the Faith, and all the Andal kings and lords would have bowed to him in religious matters.

First Men kings obviously did not. Did Rhoynar lords?

5 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

It is King Maegor and his fire-breathing dragons that break the power of the Faith. And Jaehaerys I and his fire-breathing dragons - who are there as a remainder what would happen if people resisted, but not unleashed by this nice guy king - complete the work. Maegor's power was so great that many lords who might have stood with the Faith dared not to do that because they feared the dragons.

What happened to Faith Militant in Dorne? If there ever was any.

5 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

The only ones who may have been still alive by the time of Jaehaerys' own death are Archmaester Vaegon and Saera, and they were both effectively dead as Targaryens. One had become an archmaester and the other had ran away and become a brothel owner (and presumably a whore earlier in her career). But even they might have been dead in 103 AC.

In 103, Jaehaerys thinks of Saera´s return and mistakes Alicent for Saera. In 98, all living children expressly attend tourney. That is, inclusive of Saera. Since her life post-escape is implied as somewhat longer, she probably did outlive 103.

5 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

It is a pity George played it that way. The story could have greatly profited if there had been a couple of adult grandchildren and great-grandchildren - and perhaps even an aged child - of Jaehaerys I around during the Dance. Having so many children dragonriders was somewhat silly.

Agreed. Corlys Velaryon the Sea Snake fought Dance to the age of 78, and was born when Jaehaerys was 19. Considering the way Grand Maesters could attend councils and rule the realm, how much weight would Vaegon have carried showing up in his 60s mediating the quarrels of his nephews and nieces?

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5 hours ago, AlaskanSandman said:

Well that's actually something interesting about Jaehaerys's kids. Of 13. 4 die young, 1 given over to the Maesters young, 2 given over to the septas though one ran away to Essos, then 2 die mysteriously or strangely, and 1 dies birthing a child while she's young. With only 3 living to adult hood (30's). Which of those, Rhaenys, who's passed over for Viserys. The Viserys, Daemon, and Aegon who dies young? (not mentioned in Rogue Prince.")

The mysterious Aegon is sort of hinted at in TRP when it is said that Daemon is Rhaenyra's favorite uncle. Her mother Aemma had no full sibling, so chances are that the only other uncle Rhaenyra had was Aegon Targaryen.

And my guess is that he was a very weird chap, the so-called Ape Prince, the guy Ser Axell Florent talks about to Davos. The prince whose son died who then clothed an ape in that son's clothes and always offered him in marriage to various lords who always politely declined.

5 hours ago, AlaskanSandman said:

And yea, during the dance there is a burst of children, and a sudden conflict arising with succession which leads to family on family killing. An issue of succession of Men over Women brought on by the Faith of the Seven. With House Hightower at the center. Who are also at the center of Maegor's story. The High Septon of Maegor's time even being a Hightower as he put forth his niece Ceryse for Maegor to wed. 

The Hightowers wanted to take over House Targaryen and become dragonriders themselves since the Conquest. They tried it with Aegon, they tried it with Maegor, they tried it with Daemon and Viserys I, finally succeeding with the latter. At least sort of. In the end they reached to high and lost everything.

12 minutes ago, Jaak said:

Adopted, not necessarily. Grew to tolerate? They had no alternative - toleration or martyrdom.

What about, you know, catching a ship bound for Duskendale? Chances are that the barbaric ways of the Targaryens on Dragonstone didn't exactly attract a lot of followers of the Seven - septons and septas included. Those who would have been there would not exactly have been influential with the Targaryens or their inner circles.

12 minutes ago, Jaak said:

Forced, or believe they should? Because the Faith Militant who kept resisting after the change of High Septon obviously were not forced to obey.

Well, those guys were seen as heretical High Septons, of course.

12 minutes ago, Jaak said:

What we see in medieval Europe. Landscape full of bishops and archbishops - whenever you talk about local politics, it´s relevant where the seats of church lords were, and who the incumbents were.

In Westeros we see, it´s low status village septons, then chaplains... and then nothing between ordinary septon and Most Devout cooped up at Oldtown or King´s Landing to be rounded up. "Who´s Who" names bannermen and maesters, but not leading septons.

The Faith doesn't have bishop-equivalents, true, but that doesn't mean there is no hierarchy in the Faith. We know the top and we have a good guess that the brothers and sisters in charge of the motherhouses and septries, etc. are equivalents to abbots and abbesses. There are no dioceses, etc., but there seem to be many orders of the Faith - not just the two Faith Militant orders but also the begging brothers, the silent sisters, those sister living in the motherhouses, etc. Those orders would all have leaders - like the Warrior's Sons are led by a Grand Captain - and those could make up the mid-level hierarchy of the Faith, having authority over an entire order of the Faith.

The Faith seems to be much more dominated by monastic orders than the Catholic Church is.

12 minutes ago, Jaak said:

Yes, but that´s the question of perception of Faith´s neutrality. What do you think would happen to Faith if the worshippers of Seven in Dorne decided to worship just the gods and their books, but regard the "High Septon" as mere foreign chaplain irrelevant to their faith?

Such things apparently never happened. One assumes that would be heresy. Oldtown is the holy city of the Faith and the High Septon is the Voice of the Seven on Earth. The Faith may not have as much power in Dorne than it does in the other Andal kingdoms. But those following the Faith would look to Oldtown for leadership.

12 minutes ago, Jaak said:

Hoares also ruled greenlands, and kept saltwives. Harren built a sept in Harrenhal. But did he personally worship there, or was it exclusively for the use of his greenland retainers?

How should we know. But chances are that the Hoares after Harwyn Hardhand no longer cared all that much about the Drowned God. They only visited the islands a couple of times in their lives.

12 minutes ago, Jaak said:

If there was and they had the arrogance to try disciplining their own, dragons would have made short work of them.

What right would the Targaryens have to interfere with the inner affairs of the Faith?

12 minutes ago, Jaak said:

First Men kings obviously did not. Did Rhoynar lords?

The Faith is not as strong in Dorne as it is in the other Andal kingdoms but it is still the majority religion there, and the Martells actually are an Andal house, if you recall. And even in the North the Faith rules in the Manderly lands.

12 minutes ago, Jaak said:

What happened to Faith Militant in Dorne? If there ever was any.

That is an interesting question.

@Ran, do you know anything about that? I'd not be surprised if there were no chapters of the Warrior's Sons in Dorne but there must have been some Poor Fellows, right? Do you know what happened to them?

12 minutes ago, Jaak said:

In 103, Jaehaerys thinks of Saera´s return and mistakes Alicent for Saera. In 98, all living children expressly attend tourney. That is, inclusive of Saera. Since her life post-escape is implied as somewhat longer, she probably did outlive 103.

I doubt Saera ever returned from her brothel to KL. If she came for the anniversary in 98 AC, it would be odd that Jaehaerys I would miss her so much as he apparently did when he descended into senility and death.

But we actually have no reason to believe that Saera even did live to 98 AC, nor that Jaehaerys missing her means that she was still alive. A senile and demented man can be mistaken about a lot of things, including the fact that 'the daughter' he thinks wipes his arse has long since died.

The children attending the anniversary tourney would have been Baelon and Gael. And perhaps Vaegon. Alyssa, too, if she didn't die in childbirth. But Aemon, Daella, Viserra, and Maegelle were dead at that time.

12 minutes ago, Jaak said:

Agreed. Corlys Velaryon the Sea Snake fought Dance to the age of 78, and was born when Jaehaerys was 19. Considering the way Grand Maesters could attend councils and rule the realm, how much weight would Vaegon have carried showing up in his 60s mediating the quarrels of his nephews and nieces?

The fact that nobody ever mentioned Vaegon as playing an important role at the Great Council or early on during the reign of Viserys I makes it very likely that the man was already dead at the time.

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On 11-10-2017 at 6:39 PM, Lord Varys said:

Sunfyre was bonded to Aegon II, though, while Quicksilver was not. The idea that the father's dragon searches out the son all by herself is romantic and all, but somewhat far-fetched without any textual evidence.

Sure, the situations are not entirely the same. Yet, dragons are intelligent creatures, and Quicksilver would have likely been most familiar with Aenys's heir, which could possibly have played a part. If Quicksilver would have needed to flee from Dragonstone, say, because Balerion and/or Vhagar had attacked her, that might have spurred her to seek out others she was familiar with... 

 

On 13-10-2017 at 0:17 PM, Ran said:

"Some believe His High Holiness was removed by his own brother, Ser Morgan Hightower, " Rhaenys, that was corrected in later editions. It now reads: "Some believe His High Holiness was removed by Lord Hightower's brother, Ser Morgan"

Thanks!

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1 hour ago, Rhaenys_Targaryen said:

Sure, the situations are not entirely the same. Yet, dragons are intelligent creatures, and Quicksilver would have likely been most familiar with Aenys's heir, which could possibly have played a part. If Quicksilver would have needed to flee from Dragonstone, say, because Balerion and/or Vhagar had attacked her, that might have spurred her to seek out others she was familiar with... 

Well, sure, it is not completely impossible, I guess. But time line wise Prince Viserys would definitely have had the first shot to claim Quicksilver - assuming he was indeed dragonless, which I think he should not be - considering that he was with Aenys and Quicksilver when he died. And it would have taken Visenya quite some time to get to Maegor and bring him back. More than enough time for Viserys to claim her before they all left for Driftmark, right?

In addition, this idea that Aegon and Quicksilver were particularly close is completely unfounded. A dragon only seems to be close to one human being at a time - his or her rider, and no one else. And that was Aenys, not Aegon. Syrax killed the son of her rider, despite the fact that she must have been reasonably close to Joffrey.

If Quicksilver felt grief over the death of his rider - like Dreamfyre apparently expressed her feelings over the death of Queen Helaena - then it would be much more logical to assume she would have bonded with Viserys who was there, and actually would have felt the same pain over the death of his father as his dragon did.

In any case, one assumes that Quicksilver must have gotten away from Dragonstone before Maegor arrived there. One assumes he would have taken steps to prevent that she fell into the hands of his enemies. Either by killing her, or by taking chaining her up and leaving a contingent of loyal men there to guard her. That he should have done with any other dragons on Dragonstone, be they claimed or without riders.

If Alyssa and the children took her to Driftmark somehow a ship of the Velaryon fleet could have helped them to get her to the West - assuming a there were ships large enough to transport her and captains and sailors willing to take her. Which I honestly doubt. Being quarter the size of Balerion should still be way too large for a ship. And without a rider the dragon wouldn't even have understood what was expected of her and what the point of this whole transport was.

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Is it not possible that Quicksilver finding Aegon is comparable to Drogon returning to Daenerys in Meereen? Dany and Drogon are not yet bonded at that stage yet there is clearly some kind of connection between the two which brings Drogon to her in her hour of need. It doesn't seem so unreasonable to assume something similar happened here imo. This would also account for why no explanation is given in the text, because what Maester is going to know or believe that?

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11 minutes ago, HelenaExMachina said:

Is it not possible that Quicksilver finding Aegon is comparable to Drogon returning to Daenerys in Meereen? Dany and Drogon are not yet bonded at that stage yet there is clearly some kind of connection between the two which brings Drogon to her in her hour of need. It doesn't seem so unreasonable to assume something similar happened here imo. This would also account for why no explanation is given in the text, because what Maester is going to know or believe that?

As I said, I guess it could work. It is just not very plausible. Drogon was already bonding with Dany when she tried to imprison him. He knew where she was - or rather where Meereen was. The idea that a dragon has a built-in super-efficient Targaryen detector isn't all that likely.

A more fitting analogous scenario would be something like Dany dying and then Drogon searching out Aegon in KL or Jon Snow at the Wall or Tyrion or some other Targaryen descendant for, well, reasons. That would be very hard to swallow if it 'just happened' in the books.

Just as it would be very odd if Nymeria suddenly showed up to hang out with Sansa or Shaggydog suddenly became Jon's best buddy.

From what we know a dragon never actively searches out a rider. Even Drogon might have come to Meereen because he had not yet completely abandoned it and considered it still to be part of his territory. Not to mention that he might have been drawn there simply because of the bloodshed.

The bond between a claimed dragon and its rider might be much stronger, though. There are a lot of hints in that direction.

Thinking about this whole thing I really don't see a way how to make this part of the story plausible and convincing. Any scenario I come up with comes off as partially silly.

The best scenario might actually be to include another character as a rider of Quicksilver between Aenys and Aegon. Such a character could have claimed the dragon after Aenys' death, taken it away from Dragonstone to fly to Crakehall to bring help to Aegon and Rhaena. There this character could conveniently die - either of natural or unnatural causes - for Aegon to claim the dragon of his father.

Such a character could be another son of Aenys and Alyssa (unlikely that George would make such a change), a bastard son of King Aenys (him being as popular with the women as he allegedly was should have led to at least one bastard), or a Velaryon relative of Queen Alyssa. An interesting candidate for such a Velaryon could actually be Ser Corlys Velaryon, the Lord Commander of the first Kingsguard. If still alive at that point, he could have taken it upon himself to risk his own life to claim a dragon to be able to help the prince he thought was the rightful heir to the throne. And his advanced age at the time - certainly in his sixties - could also explain why the man died. Hell, he could even have been suffering from some mortal illness at the time, knowing fully well that he would not live all that long, and only claiming Quicksilver so that he could bring her to Aegon. In such a setting the strain of the flight - the distance from Dragonstone to Crakehall is enormous, and if this guy would try to fly basically non-stop it should be a real blow to his deteriorating health.

But I guess the chances are pretty good that Ser Corlys actually died during the First Dornish War or later on during some other struggle is not unlikely. However, Corlys may not have been the only Targaryen-blooded Velaryon serving in the Kingsguard at the time.

The bastard version seems to be even more appealing to me. It could mark a nice counterpoint to the later Targaryen bastards like Bittersteel and the Blackfyres turning against the Targaryen if we had a truly loyal Targaryen bastard there, doing everything he can to help his trueborn siblings.

In such a scenario Aegon's half-brother - as old as he is, or slightly older than him - claims his father's dragon, takes it to Crakehall, and becomes Aegon's closest confidant and supporter there. If he is a great knight he could also be the first knight of his Kingsguard, or something like that (in that scenario it would be interesting if he was the first known Aemon). He would die prior to Aegon's campaign while saving Aegon and the pregnant Rhaena from some assassins sent after them by Maegor or Tyanna. The news that Rhaena was pregnant should, at that point, not exactly have been a cause for celebration in KL.

One could also combine those stories and make Aenys' bastard a member of his Kingsguard, instead of using a Velaryon for that. Rhaena was born in 23 AC, and thus nineteen in 42 AC when her father died. But Aenys could actually have fathered this speculative bastard of his prior to his marriage to Alyssa Velaryon in 22 AC, say, when he was fourteen in 21 AC, and perhaps on of the royal progresses. That would make such a child 21 in 42 AC, and old enough to join the Kingsguard if he had shown himself to be an exceptional knight.

I'd say either of those scenarios - or something along those lines - would make much more sense than anything that's just based on the characters, dragons, and events we know up to this point.

But in any case - the idea that Aegon and Viserys didn't get any dragons of their own during the reign of the Conqueror and Aenys still doesn't make any sense. The dragons were there, and it is simply not imaginable that the Heir Apparent to the Iron Throne was dragonless while Maegor was allowed to claim Balerion. And Viserys essentially had any chance to claim Quicksilver on Dragonstone - or any other riderless dragon on the island. It is not that there weren't any there.

'Fire and Blood' really has to address all those issues if the histories are supposed to make sense as narratives. It really seems George didn't really think all that much about the dragons back then. The dragon fights in 'The Dying of the Dragons' make much more sense and there is never the feeling there that the author forgot that dragons played a role in the warfare. In TSotD Balerion and Vhagar burn castles and all but they are little more than props. And during Maegor's last big campaign against the Faith Militant Balerion doesn't even seem to be there. He is warring in the later Kingswood, and the story actually gives the impression he is an entire year away from the capital when in fact his dragon should have allowed him to return to KL very quickly should he ever wanted to do so.

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3 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

What about, you know, catching a ship bound for Duskendale? Chances are that the barbaric ways of the Targaryens on Dragonstone didn't exactly attract a lot of followers of the Seven - septons and septas included. Those who would have been there would not exactly have been influential with the Targaryens or their inner circles.

Even with the barbaric ways of their lords, the septons and their followers had the option to tolerate and be tolerated. Some may have been inclined to take it. As for influence with Targaryens, some Targaryen must have authorized carving masts to gods.

3 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

Well, those guys were seen as heretical High Septons, of course.

Such things apparently never happened. One assumes that would be heresy. Oldtown is the holy city of the Faith and the High Septon is the Voice of the Seven on Earth. The Faith may not have as much power in Dorne than it does in the other Andal kingdoms. But those following the Faith would look to Oldtown for leadership.

Since when?

The position of High Septon had a history. And it was NOT as old as Faith of Seven itself. While the post of High Septon was moved from Starry Sept to Great Sept of Baelor some time after Baelor, it never had been moved Andalos to Westeros. It originally was a court chaplain of Hightowers. The Andals who sailed to land on Fingers and in Dorne to fight and win followed Faith but recognized no High Septon.

3 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

How should we know. But chances are that the Hoares after Harwyn Hardhand no longer cared all that much about the Drowned God. They only visited the islands a couple of times in their lives.

What right would the Targaryens have to interfere with the inner affairs of the Faith?

Um? Right to punish murders committed in their own domain? Right to protect their servants and retainers, even those who committed abomination and heresy in complying with their master´s wishes?

3 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

That is an interesting question.

@Ran, do you know anything about that? I'd not be surprised if there were no chapters of the Warrior's Sons in Dorne but there must have been some Poor Fellows, right? Do you know what happened to them?

Why "must have been"?

An option I would favour is that Faith Militant had already been suppressed in Dorne long before Maegor. Therefore no Poor Fellows.

3 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

I doubt Saera ever returned from her brothel to KL. If she came for the anniversary in 98 AC, it would be odd that Jaehaerys I would miss her so much as he apparently did when he descended into senility and death.

But we actually have no reason to believe that Saera even did live to 98 AC, nor that Jaehaerys missing her means that she was still alive. A senile and demented man can be mistaken about a lot of things, including the fact that 'the daughter' he thinks wipes his arse has long since died.

We have a reason for this.

The description of Saera living for a while in Lys and finishing as brothel owner in Volantis implies a longer exile.

Fitting all of it pre-98 would be problematic, as he was one of the younger children.

I´d prefer if her whole escape was post-98 - she attended the tourney in 98 as a septa in good standing, and fled afterwards. So in 103, her escape was fresh in Jaehaerys´ mind, and he hoped for her return.

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9 minutes ago, Jaak said:

Even with the barbaric ways of their lords, the septons and their followers had the option to tolerate and be tolerated. Some may have been inclined to take it. As for influence with Targaryens, some Targaryen must have authorized carving masts to gods.

Sure, but we know that the successors of Aenar was famously rich, growing wealthy thanks to their dragons and their fleet controlling the trade in the Narrow Sea. They could have afforded building richly ornamented idols of quite a few religions, and we know that religious tolerance had been one of the hallmarks of Valyrian society. So one can easily see the Targaryens as patrons of a religion they didn't care about at all. 

9 minutes ago, Jaak said:

Since when?

The position of High Septon had a history. And it was NOT as old as Faith of Seven itself. While the post of High Septon was moved from Starry Sept to Great Sept of Baelor some time after Baelor, it never had been moved Andalos to Westeros. It originally was a court chaplain of Hightowers. The Andals who sailed to land on Fingers and in Dorne to fight and win followed Faith but recognized no High Septon.

What the Andals did in Andalos or the Vale or the Riverlands before the Hightowers converted to the Faith isn't the topic here. We all know how the High Septon became the High Septon. The important point is that the High Septon was the High Septon after there was a High Septon and all of the Andals living in Westeros recognized him as the Voice of the Seven on Earth.

How this could happen I don't know - and I sure don't understand how George thinks that did happen - but we do know that it did happen.

9 minutes ago, Jaak said:

Um? Right to punish murders committed in their own domain? Right to protect their servants and retainers, even those who committed abomination and heresy in complying with their master´s wishes?

The Faith tries his own. The Targaryens on Dragonstone wouldn't have any right to interfere with the Faith disciplining its own members. No king in the Seven Kingdoms had that right until Jaehaerys I implemented his laws.

9 minutes ago, Jaak said:

Why "must have been"?

An option I would favour is that Faith Militant had already been suppressed in Dorne long before Maegor. Therefore no Poor Fellows.

There is no textual evidence indicating that something like that happened. Why would you assume that? The Dornishmen are Andals, too. They follow the Seven. The only Dornishmen sort of not following the Seven are (some) of the orphans of the Greenblood.

9 minutes ago, Jaak said:

We have a reason for this.

The description of Saera living for a while in Lys and finishing as brothel owner in Volantis implies a longer exile.

Fitting all of it pre-98 would be problematic, as he was one of the younger children.

I´d prefer if her whole escape was post-98 - she attended the tourney in 98 as a septa in good standing, and fled afterwards. So in 103, her escape was fresh in Jaehaerys´ mind, and he hoped for her return.

You are making stuff up out of thin air. This is what we know about Princess Saera:

Quote

PRINCESS SAERA
Though given to the Faith as Maegelle was, Saera did not have Maegelle’s temperament. She ran away from the motherhouse where she was a novice and crossed the narrow sea. She was at Lys for a time, then Old Volantis, where she ended her days as the proprietor of a famous pleasure house.

Saera is Alysanne's twelfth child, true, but this doesn't mean she was born particularly late. She could have been born in the early to mid-60s. If she was a novice she may have ran away in the mid-70s.

Even if she was born somewhat later, she could have ran away in the mid-80s, allowing her to spend the rest of the 80s in Lys, and all the 90s in Volantis where she died at the end of the century.

There is nothing in that short paragraph indicating that Saera ever became a septa or ever returned to KL to visit her royal father. She may have written her parents, and reports may have come in from Lys and Volantis telling about her exploits - and embarassing the royal family in the process of it - but chances are about zero that a brothel owner would have been welcome at the royal court as a guest.

And if Saera had any inclination to return to her parents she would certainly have not become a brothel owner. She could have gone back any time. 

But again, I'm not saying Vaegon and Saera necessarily predeceased Jaehaerys I. I said they could have done so and that it is not all that unlikely and that they were effectively dead as Targaryens due to their professions and - in Saera's case - their overall behavior.

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6 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

The mysterious Aegon is sort of hinted at in TRP when it is said that Daemon is Rhaenyra's favorite uncle. Her mother Aemma had no full sibling, so chances are that the only other uncle Rhaenyra had was Aegon Targaryen.

And my guess is that he was a very weird chap, the so-called Ape Prince, the guy Ser Axell Florent talks about to Davos. The prince whose son died who then clothed an ape in that son's clothes and always offered him in marriage to various lords who always politely declined.

The Hightowers wanted to take over House Targaryen and become dragonriders themselves since the Conquest. They tried it with Aegon, they tried it with Maegor, they tried it with Daemon and Viserys I, finally succeeding with the latter. At least sort of. In the end they reached to high and lost everything.

Hmmm. That's an interesting catch.

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Reading this i wonder why the people didn't try to kill the High septon much sooner. I mean its one thing to threaten Aneys who we all know was weak, but to threaten Maegor who didn't have any of Aegon's patience he is either mad or really stupid. This is a guy that hates being called Kin slayer despite publically two of his kin. 

Tyana is a real nasty piece of work she deserved way worse than what she got. I do also believe with this Maegor killed himself he didn't seem that broken as TWOIAF suggested. A real shame though robbed the realm of two good princes . 

I will give Maegor this seems the best swordsman in Targ history the guy was an absolute beast. 

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8 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

Sure, but we know that the successors of Aenar was famously rich, growing wealthy thanks to their dragons and their fleet controlling the trade in the Narrow Sea. They could have afforded building richly ornamented idols of quite a few religions, and we know that religious tolerance had been one of the hallmarks of Valyrian society. So one can easily see the Targaryens as patrons of a religion they didn't care about at all. 

They could have afforded to build the idols of Seven out of new wood. Using the masts of ships they had arrived in was meant as a symbol.

8 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

What the Andals did in Andalos or the Vale or the Riverlands before the Hightowers converted to the Faith isn't the topic here. We all know how the High Septon became the High Septon. The important point is that the High Septon was the High Septon after there was a High Septon and all of the Andals living in Westeros recognized him as the Voice of the Seven on Earth.

How this could happen I don't know - and I sure don't understand how George thinks that did happen - but we do know that it did happen.

No, we don't. And it is relevant. There must have been a time when High Septon was Voice of Seven for Oldtown but not for long established worshippers of Seven in Vale or Riverlands or even in Reach outside Hightower domains. There must have been a time when a majority of Andals did recognize High Septons, even outside Reach, but a large minority did not yet.

And under High Septon Pater, there was a time when some faithful may have recognized Pater as Voice of Seven, many obviously regarded him as a heretic abomination, and many regarded him as just a political puppet bowing to the inevitable.

8 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

The Faith tries his own. The Targaryens on Dragonstone wouldn't have any right to interfere with the Faith disciplining its own members. No king in the Seven Kingdoms had that right until Jaehaerys I implemented his laws.

Pretty obviously some did. Several kings of Iron Islands banished all septons and septas - meaning they punished them for mere fact of being a septon, even if they did allow them to depart alive. And while Hoare rulers of Riverlands obviously tolerated faith of Seven, and Harren even built a sept in Harrenhal, we expressly hear that Halleck called himself an ironman, sacrificed to Drowned God and was accompanied by three priests of Drowned God.
And Riverlands Hoares kept saltwives. If Hoares could, why couldn't Targaryens?

Did the Faith in Hoare Riverlands have the right to try a septa or a Silent Sister who sinned in becoming the saltwife of an ironman?

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7 hours ago, Aegon1FanBoy said:

Reading this i wonder why the people didn't try to kill the High septon much sooner. I mean its one thing to threaten Aneys who we all know was weak, but to threaten Maegor who didn't have any of Aegon's patience he is either mad or really stupid. This is a guy that hates being called Kin slayer despite publically two of his kin. 

Well, the crusade against the Targaryens began while Aenys was in charge. And when Maegor started burning the Warrior's Sons they really had no other choice but to continue the fight. However, in the end the Hightowers resolved the issue in their own way.

14 minutes ago, Jaak said:

They could have afforded to build the idols of Seven out of new wood. Using the masts of ships they had arrived in was meant as a symbol.

Sure, it could have been meant as a symbol. But how do you know that the intention behind that was sincere? I'm an atheist and I could pretend to be religious rather easily. And if I had a lot of money I could give a lot of money to churches, right?

14 minutes ago, Jaak said:

No, we don't. And it is relevant. There must have been a time when High Septon was Voice of Seven for Oldtown but not for long established worshippers of Seven in Vale or Riverlands or even in Reach outside Hightower domains. There must have been a time when a majority of Andals did recognize High Septons, even outside Reach, but a large minority did not yet.

Sure, but this is not relevant to the topic at hand. There was a time when nobody considered the Pope to the the boss of the Catholic Church yet that doesn't matter to the priests who are very much under his thumb in later days and ages. What we know indicates that all the Andals of the Seven Kingdoms saw the High Septon of Oldtown as the leader of their religion. There were no dissenters there.

14 minutes ago, Jaak said:

And under High Septon Pater, there was a time when some faithful may have recognized Pater as Voice of Seven, many obviously regarded him as a heretic abomination, and many regarded him as just a political puppet bowing to the inevitable.

Sure, but nobody ever questioned that the office of the High Septon is in charge of the Faith. There can certainly be individual heretical High Septons and all but that doesn't damage the office or the Faith itself.

14 minutes ago, Jaak said:

Pretty obviously some did. Several kings of Iron Islands banished all septons and septas - meaning they punished them for mere fact of being a septon, even if they did allow them to depart alive. And while Hoare rulers of Riverlands obviously tolerated faith of Seven, and Harren even built a sept in Harrenhal, we expressly hear that Halleck called himself an ironman, sacrificed to Drowned God and was accompanied by three priests of Drowned God.

Man, that is all part of a religious war. The Faith never took root on the islands. The Ironborn expelled migrating septons and septas from their islands, and they destroyed their buildings there, etc. There was a struggle there. There was no such struggle there on Dragonstone, presumably because the Targaryens and their Valyrian subjects didn't care about religions at all. They feigned piety if it suited them. But they did not allow religious doctrines to interfere with their private lives. Aegon certainly did not.

The idea that he would be as stupid as to force some septon into a religious conflict by insisting that he marry him to both his sisters when Aegon had other ways to marry those sisters - the Valyrian way, or the way of countless other Essosi religions who perhaps do not condemn either incest or polygamy - simply doesn't make a lot of sense.

It could make sense if knew Aegon and his sisters were true followers of the Seven but we they were not.

14 minutes ago, Jaak said:

And Riverlands Hoares kept saltwives. If Hoares could, why couldn't Targaryens?

Did the Faith in Hoare Riverlands have the right to try a septa or a Silent Sister who sinned in becoming the saltwife of an ironman?

The Targaryens never took salt wives. We don't know how the Hoares dealt with the Faith's privileges to try its own. But considering that the Faith Militant would have been a considerable power in the Riverlands, I doubt Harwyn and his successors were stupid enough to provoke them. In fact, one imagines that they granted the Faith more privileges than it had under the Durrandon kings so that they would not preach against Ironborn rule. If the smallfolk rebelled against the Hoares their reign would have been over in a fortnight.

There would have certainly been some issues over the salt wife thing, presumably, but the Hoares were actually more the Kings of the Riverlands than the Iron Islands. Those Ironborn having salt wives wouldn't have taken them from the Riverlanders - a place they no longer raided but ruled now - but instead from the West, the North, the Reach, and other places. Sure, back when they conquered the Riverlands then Harwyn and his men would have claimed quite a few men as their prices.

As to how the Faith would have treated septas and silent sisters who became salt wives - or normal wives, or committed some other grievous sins - I suggest you recall the fate of Merry Meg. I'm sure the Father would judge such women as justly as the blacksmith judged his lawful wife. If such a woman ever came back into the Faith's power they would have punished her very harshly. And that might certainly have happened from time to time, say, after the 'husband' of the salt wife died and his son threw such a woman and her children out of his house.

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2 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

Well, the crusade against the Targaryens began while Aenys was in charge. And when Maegor started burning the Warrior's Sons they really had no other choice but to continue the fight. However, in the end the Hightowers resolved the issue in their own way.

They had obvious choices.

Before the attack on Oldtown, in a period of at least half a year when Maegor "let poisons fester", suspect lords and landed knights were invited to travel to King's Landing and deliver hostages. We expressly hear that some did.

After the fall of Oldtown, those Swords who were at the point captives did not have the choice to fight. They did have other choices: die as martyrs (a quarter would) or go to Wall. Most of the martyrs were beheaded by their own former brethren - yet since thrice as many took Black as death, most who took Black could not have had a brother to behead. Was there any difference in the treatment of those  who did not behead their brethren, and those who did?

Only one, Ser Morgan Hightower, received a "full royal pardon" - on which terms?

After Pater's dissolution of Faith Militant, those who were on the loose got a whole year to "surrender their weapons and give up their rebellious ways". Meaning what? If a Faith Militant member on the loose in 43 gave up his rebellious ways and set out to join his brethren on the Wall, bringing his arms along to Wall, would Maegor demand the Watch return his head, or just issue him their own standard issue weapons and send his own brought weapons to Maegor to "surrender his weapons"?

 

Edited by Jaak

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2 hours ago, Jaak said:

After Pater's dissolution of Faith Militant, those who were on the loose got a whole year to "surrender their weapons and give up their rebellious ways". Meaning what? If a Faith Militant member on the loose in 43 gave up his rebellious ways and set out to join his brethren on the Wall, bringing his arms along to Wall, would Maegor demand the Watch return his head, or just issue him their own standard issue weapons and send his own brought weapons to Maegor to "surrender his weapons"?

 

I would assume the "surrender your weapons" is more metaphorical than actually needing to FedEx an axe from wherever you are living all the way to King's Landing. How would Maegor even know if you just moved away and stopped being outwardly devout?

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On 10/13/2017 at 5:10 PM, RumHam said:

Most likely because they believed that keeping their bloodline pure was a requirement for their descendants to be able to ride dragons. Why they kept it up after the dragons were dead, I dunno. Just tradition at that point I guess. 

Anyway my copy came today, it was alright but kinda unnecessary between the worldbook and Fire and Blood Vol 1 probably coming out next year. 

But I am sure it helped a good friend sell copies, and it helps maintain interest among the fan base. 

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