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Maria Maria

A bride for Raeghar from Volantis? No... only a fool.

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"Patchface had come to them as a boy. Lord Steffon of cherished memory had found him in

Volantis, across the narrow sea. The king-the old king, Aerys II Targaryen, who had not been quite so mad in those days, had sent his lordship to seek a bride for Prince Rhaegar, who had no sisters to wed. “We have found the most splendid fool,” he wrote Cressen, a fortnight before he was to return home from his fruitless mission. “Only a boy, yet nimble as a monkey and witty as a dozen courtiers. He juggles and riddles and does magic, and he can sing prettily in four tongues. We have bought his freedom and hope to bring him home with us."

Okay... Raeghar had no sisters. Got that. 

Lord Steffon was sent to find him a wife.

And he came back to Dragonstone with a fool. 

But why a bride from Volantis? And why lord Steffon? 

What am I missing here?  This is confusing. The mission was "fruitless".  Was this the only mission? Was Elia the product of some other serch mission? 

Don't even want to consider Lyanna... that seams to be Raeghar's mission... so maybe he took things in his own hands at some point.

 

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34 minutes ago, Maria Maria said:

But why a bride from Volantis? And why lord Steffon? 

Rhaegar had no sister to marry, Targaryens wed brother to sister to keep their line as "pure" and Valyrian as they could, so Aerys wanted a bride for Rhaegar with Valyrian blood, to keep the Targaryen bloodline "pure". Volantis is the "First Daughter" of Valyria, and it's said that the "Old Blood" of Volantis are Noble families who can prove unbroken descent from old Valyria. It was the best bet for finding a bride for Rhaegar who had the blood of Valyria in her veins. 

As to why Steffon... During the War of the 9Penny Kings, Aerys, Tywin and Steffon became very close friends. Tywin had duties, as Hand of the King, and couldn't leave for such an extended period of time. So Aerys sent his other trusted friend on the mission. 

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That was my first thought. Blonde hair and purpe eyes. But Elia does not have blonde hair. And Volantis is full of slaves. And that made me wonder if they were looking for a wife or a slave. Hence the confussion.

Did not knew about the friendship to lord Steffon. Thanks. Now makes sense. So maybe king Aerys did not expect to have another childers (no wonder since there was a 16 years gap betwin Rhaegar and Viserys) and trully wanted to find a good match for his son. 

One more question. How did Elia came into the picture? Cannot remember, just started rereading ACoK.

 

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I think the context of this is important in that all of this went down after Duskendale. Aerys turned to the person might still have trusted, and that was Steffon. They were first cousins and friends and there were rumors that Aerys was planning on sacking Tywin and naming Steffon his Hand after he returned from Volantis. 

I think Elia was a means to an end. I don't think the Princess of Dorne had any love lost for Tywin, so her wanting to stick it to Tywin over insulting her would have fit Aerys's own agenda.

I find it surprising that Rhaegar was allowed to stay unmarried for so long, tbh. It always made me wonder if there hadn't been something else in the works for him.

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1 hour ago, Maria Maria said:

 

But why a bride from Volantis? And why lord Steffon? 

 

Volantis has lots of Valyrian descendants. Lacking a sister or female cousin/aunt, this would be the most ideal match in Aerys' eyes. He does not approve of wedding his children to his subjects. 

Steffon is the closest extended family member Aerys has, and wife hunting is somewhat of a family business. 

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Posted (edited)
38 minutes ago, Maria Maria said:

One more question. How did Elia came into the picture? Cannot remember, just started rereading ACoK.

Elia had plenty of Valyrian blood. One of her ancestors was Drazenko Rogare, uncle of Larra Rogare, that was wife of Viserys II Targaryen, and mother of Aegon IV. Among her more recent ancestors was Daenerys Targaryen, wife of Maron Martell, who was younger brother of Mariah Martell, wife of Daeron II Targaryen, and grandmother of Aegon V the Egg.

Elia had Valyrian genes, thus even though she had dark hair and brown eyes, her son Aegon had lightly-colored hair, and blue/indigo/purple eyes.

Also Steffon Baratheon wasn't only Aerys' best friend, he was also his first cousin. Steffon's mother was Rhaelle Targaryen, aunt of Queen Rhaella Targaryen, wife of Aerys II, and Rhaegar's and Dany's mother.

And probably Steffon was returning without bride for Rhaegar, because he didn't found someone, whom he thought to be good enough for prince Rhaegar.

Edited by Megorova

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3 minutes ago, Megorova said:

Also Steffon Baratheon wasn't only Aerys' best friend, he was also his first cousin. Steffon's mother was Rhaelle Targaryen, sister of Queen Rhaella Targaryen, wife of Aerys II, and Rhaegar's and Dany's mother.

Not sister - aunt. Rhaelle was sister to Jaehaerys/Sheila (?, Aerys' and Rhaella's parents.

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21 minutes ago, TMIFairy said:

Not sister - aunt. Rhaelle was sister to Jaehaerys/Sheila (?, Aerys' and Rhaella's parents.

Yes, aunt. Corrected that. Princess Rhaelle, that married with Ormund Baratheon, was daughter of Aegon V and Betha Blackwood, and sister of Duncan (that married with a peasant girl Jenny of Oldstones), Daeron (who was probably gay), and King Jaehaerys II and his wife Shaera. Aerys II and Rhaella were children of Shaera and Jaehaerys.

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There are two free cities full of Valyrians, Lys and Volantis. Lys breeds the beauties but Volantis has the "better blood", because of oldest noble limes.

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1 hour ago, Jon Fossoway said:

Steffon was looking for a bride in several places, one of them Volantis.

Nope, as far as we know the man visited only Volantis. There are no reports of him looking for brides anywhere else.

3 hours ago, Megorova said:

Elia had plenty of Valyrian blood. One of her ancestors was Drazenko Rogare, uncle of Larra Rogare, that was wife of Viserys II Targaryen, and mother of Aegon IV. Among her more recent ancestors was Daenerys Targaryen, wife of Maron Martell, who was younger brother of Mariah Martell, wife of Daeron II Targaryen, and grandmother of Aegon V the Egg.

There is no evidence that the Martells of today are descended from Drazenko Rogare. We don't even know whether he and Aliandra Martell had any children. The family tree in the MUSH has Aliandra die without issue and Dorne pass to her sibling.

3 hours ago, Widow's Watch said:

I think Elia was a means to an end. I don't think the Princess of Dorne had any love lost for Tywin, so her wanting to stick it to Tywin over insulting her would have fit Aerys's own agenda.

It seems pretty obvious to me that Elia being a Targaryen cousin of high birth is what caused Aerys II to agree to this match. She was a better alternative than some 'lowborn' Plumm, Penrose, Tarth, etc. cousins. The Martells of Sunspear are a very prestigious house, worthy to a Targaryen king.

Doran's mother would also have been motivated by her desire to get at Tywin, of course, but Aerys' would have been convinced that this was a good idea because the Martells were Targaryen cousins.

3 hours ago, Widow's Watch said:

I find it surprising that Rhaegar was allowed to stay unmarried for so long, tbh. It always made me wonder if there hadn't been something else in the works for him.

That is very odd indeed. The best explanation is that Aerys II desperately hoped he and Rhaella would produce a living sister for Rhaegar to marry. If Viserys or his elder brother Jaehaerys had been healthy girls who had lived, Aerys II would have likely betrothed them to Rhaegar, never mind the age gap or the years they would have to wait for grandchildren. It would have ensured that the bloodline which was supposed to produce the promised prince and the three dragon heads remained pure.

The alternative to a sister Aerys may have had in mind for years might have been a daughter of Steffon Baratheon. If Renly had been a girl they might have decided to betroth her to Rhaegar. In fact, that Aerys II chose Steffon to find a suitable bride for Rhaegar may indicate that he originally hoped Steffon would be the one to produce the woman Rhaegar was going to marry.

Aside from that there is no good explanation. Aerys II would have been approached by men offering their daughters and sister to Rhaegar as brides from childhood on. The man obviously dismissed them all. And while Tywin may have helped dissuade Aerys II from making an 'early match' (waiting for the moment to ask him to accept ten-year-old Cersei as bride for Rhaegar) the situation the royal family was in should have made it of paramount importance for the Prince of Dragonstone to marry as early as possible and to father children of his own as early as possible. The king and queen had great trouble producing children, so Rhaegar should helped them in their efforts as soon as he was physically capable.

There must be a good explanation as why he did not. I mean, the 13-15-year-old Rhaegar must have seen what grief and troubles his parents went through in their efforts to have more children. It makes no sense to assume that he wouldn't have offered his father to take a wife of his own, to reduce the pressure his father and mother were feeling.

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I'd just like to observe that these have been some great, informative responses and I've learned a fair amount from them. Why Lord Steffon went to Volantis in the first place hadn't been a big concern of mine, but given this background, it makes perfect sense, and is a reminder of how intricately crafted this whole story is.

And, sadly, why it's taking so long to wrap up...

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