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Daemon of the Blacks

The Blacks or the Greens?

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2 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

Yeah, because that actually could have worked had his wife and father-in-law and sons of his second wife not turned out to be such asses ... after he had closed his eyes for good.

There certainly were ways to prevent the coup, but I'm not sure there was a way aside from killing/banishing the sons to prevent a succession struggle in the future. Not in light of the rotten characters of Aegon and Aemond.

And it is not that Viserys I allowed Alicent a faction of courtiers - she just has such a faction. She was the queen, after all. Recalling Otto as Hand was stupidity, but stupidity based on the belief the man was a good friend and loyal subject who would follow the vow he swore in 105 AC rather than break it.

I mean, Viserys could have also have made the lords swear the oaths to Rhaenyra again after Aegon was born, call a great council and bribe the lords, and not promote anyone close to her and her ambitions. He would have to have been pretty thick not to suspect anything at all from Alicent.

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Posted (edited)
8 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

Do you know a way how to stop that without actually doing things that are completely immoral/unbecoming of a king in Westeros. The queen and the heir to have exalted positions at court, and that attracts flatterers and courtiers.

Sympathy and love cannot be enforced. If they are not there, then even a king is powerless.

I mean, just look at Robert's court. He could not make Ned love Jaime or vice versa, could he? He could not make his wife love his Hand. He could not make his two brothers to get along with each other and his wife and children.

Daeron II couldn't make Daemon Blackfyre and Bittersteel love him the way Bloodraven apparently did.

 A king cannot prevent the development of factions at his court. He could have decided not to recall Otto as Hand, but aside from putting Alicent under house arrest or forcing his sons to become septons or eunuchs or exile them to the Wall or banish them from the country he could have done nothing to stop them from building factions.

 And people not being all that close still does not mean they have to go to war. We see that a lot of Targaryens had issues with their relations without it escalating to murder and war. Visenya and Aegon despised each other in to blows between these two, either, Jaehaerys/Alysanne and Rhaena had their issues but they never caused them to act against each other, Viserys and Daemon had trouble getting alo their last years, Aenys and Maegor were never truly close yet it didn't comeng, but Viserys never used his royal powers to actually severely punish or hurt his presumptuous little brother.

 A man of that mindset who dealt with his brother the way he did certainly wouldn't have imagined that his children wouldn't find a modus vivendi, too - even after he was gone.

Please pardon me if I don't shed a tear for troubles of Viserys, he was the King at apex of Targaryen power in Westeros, he had all the wealth and every boon that goes with being the King.

But he also had duty to his Kingdom, In his actions that tried to selfishly please everybody he sentenced realm, people, and some of his kin to suffering. Some people claim that love is death of duty, I agree in part , king needs to make hard decisions if it is for the good of his Realm.

Viserys in my opinion was very bad king that was fortunate to come after the long and successful rule of  Jaeharys , he also died before the Dance though realm was fractured only days after his death. He gets little deserved flak for it ( at least in Asoiaf world).

His "achievement" is even worse since from prosperity to  Dying of dragons only two years passes, not saying that sides involved aren't responsible only that he could have done lot more to prevent feud.  

He could have empowered either faction to have overwhelming control over leverages of power , that are concentrated in Kings Landing mostly but also depending of Lord support.

He could have made additional proclamations,  write will, royal processions or public swearing of oaths , since old was 20 something years before and there were certainly doubts about succession , even Black side tends to treat Rhaenyra's claim as exception and not the rule. 

 Viserys could have removed destabilizing people like Daemon (enforcing existing banishment, and not allowing marriage with Rhaenyra  especially since he had many strikes against Viserys authority , War in Stepstones was act of foolishness that Viserys had part of, it is one of bigger blunders that came later to prominence also ). He didn't have  to reinstate Otto Hightower after he had fired him for demanding Aegon to be crowned. 

I don't want to go in too much in the rule of future and past Kings or Queens,  every ruler should be good judge of character especially of his children or brother and make decisions correspondingly, we see result in his case regardless if we favor Black, Green or neither.

 

 

Edited by Eltharion21

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14 minutes ago, Eltharion21 said:

Please pardon me if I don't shed a tear for troubles of Viserys, he was the King at apex of Targaryen power in Westeros, he had all the wealth and every boon that goes with being the King.

But a king does not rule his descendants when he is dead, does he? Nor in old age when his grandchildren prepare for war, like Daemon and Corlys did. The great Conciliator was a weak and impotent old man after his second son had died. His word could not pretend a war, that's why he had to call the Great Council.

14 minutes ago, Eltharion21 said:

But he also had duty to his Kingdom, In his actions that tried to selfishly please everybody he sentenced realm, people, and some of his kin to suffering. Some people claim that love is death of duty, I agree in part , king needs to make hard decisions if it is for the good of his Realm.

And what decisions should that have been? The suggestion to singularly favor one side is a ridiculous suggestion. No father does that kind of thing, and no king can, unless he wants to be a kinslayer.

14 minutes ago, Eltharion21 said:

Viserys in my opinion was very bad king that was fortunate to come after the long and successful rule of  Jaeharys , he also died before the Dance though realm was fractured only days after his death. He gets little deserved flak for it ( at least in Asoiaf world).

We do know nothing about Viserys I own accomplishments thanks to George only caring about relaying court gossip, but it wouldn't have been the most peaceful - no wars on Westerosi soil at all - and the most prosperous reign if the king had been a moron. He knew how to rule, and he knew how to surround himself with competent people.

14 minutes ago, Eltharion21 said:

His "achievement" is even worse since from prosperity to  Dying of dragons only two years passes, not saying that sides involved aren't responsible only that he could have done lot more to prevent feud.

He certainly could have taken steps to prevent the Green coup. That would have been in his power. But a succession war in general? Probably not. That could have only worked if he had taken out some of his grandsons - and what kind of grandfather does that?

Aegon the Conqueror should also have killed Maegor as soon as he understood what kind of person that one was. A blind man could have seen that this creature was a danger to Aegon's beloved grandchildren. But he didn't do that. Does this mean Aegon is responsible for Maegor's usurpation and the subsequent murders of his grandsons? Yes and no.

One should also keep in mind that those people live in a medieval world. Any day can be your last even without succession squabbles or personal vendettas. Jaehaerys and Alysanne outlived an army of her own children, and Viserys I could have done the same. If he had he would have needed the spare heirs he happened to have.

There are people who suggest that Viserys I should have simply never remarried - but he had just a single heir, and his brother was childless, too. Simply remembering his mother and father would have shown Viserys that children do not always outlive their parents. If Rhaenyra had predeceased Viserys I he would have been back to Daemon again, who he did not want to succeed him, and who didn't have heirs of his body, either.

A king cutting down the tree to just one branch during his life - by removing other children from the succession through various means - may have end up having no (clear) heir at all. That kind of thing could have been worse than the Dance of the Dragons was.

14 minutes ago, Eltharion21 said:

He could have empowered either faction to have overwhelming control over leverages of power , that are concentrated in Kings Landing mostly but also depending of Lord support.

Can you describe how that should have worked in detail? You are aware that Criston Cole is in the Kingsguard, right? And they serve for life. He was Rhaenyra's sworn enemy. Even if Viserys I had somehow neutralized Alicent and his own sons, it would have been rather difficult to get rid of that fellow.

14 minutes ago, Eltharion21 said:

He could have made additional proclamations,  write will, royal processions or public swearing of oaths , since old was 20 something years before and there were certainly doubts about succession , even Black side tends to treat Rhaenyra's claim as exception and not the rule. 

Nobody said Viserys I himself treated Rhaenyra as the heir as 'the rule'. Sure, another public ceremony with lords swearing vows would have been a great idea. And one can assume the guy had a will - he was sick for years and his death likely didn't come as a surprise to him. But since his wife and court allowed him to rot in his bedchamber we can be sure they didn't even look for a will - much less had any intention of publicly reading it.

That Viserys I wanted Rhaenyra to succeed him was clear to all. There was no doubt about that.

But compare the outbreak of the Dance to the War of the Five Kings. Did Robert make it unclear that Joffrey was his heir? No. Did any of his brothers care? No. Did Ned or Jaime or Tywin give a damn about Robert's wish that they should not fight? No.

What else can you do? And how aware was Robert/Viserys about the animosities in his own family/the hatred among his closest allies? We cannot pretend we know. Robert seems to have had no clue that Renly wanted to kill his children, that Stannis would kill his wife and children and their brother, that Joffrey would execute his dear friend Ned, etc.

Do you presume he should have known that? What reason had Viserys I to believe that his wife and father-in-law and Lord Commander of the Kingsguard would betray him as soon as he died?

14 minutes ago, Eltharion21 said:

 Viserys could have removed destabilizing people like Daemon (enforcing existing banishment, and not allowing marriage with Rhaenyra  especially since he had many strikes against Viserys authority , War in Stepstones was act of foolishness that Viserys had part of, it is one of bigger blunders that came later to prominence also ). He didn't have  to reinstate Otto Hightower after he had fired him for demanding Aegon to be crowned. 

Daemon was a problem in the first half of Viserys' reign, not the second. After he married Rhaenyra he settled down and troubled no one.

Not sure how exactly the Stepstones War was foolishness. Just leaving without finishing the job was bad, but eradicating the pirates and possibly even crushing the Three Daughters - why not? If the Iron Throne ended up controlling the Stepstones they could grow ever richer and play the part the Triarchy played previously.

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7 hours ago, Vaith said:

I mean, Viserys could have also have made the lords swear the oaths to Rhaenyra again after Aegon was born, call a great council and bribe the lords, and not promote anyone close to her and her ambitions. He would have to have been pretty thick not to suspect anything at all from Alicent.

See above. I agree that it would have been a great idea to force the lords and especially the members of the royal family to swear an oath of fealty to Rhaenyra, just as it would have been a great idea to make her Lyonel Strong's successor as Hand.

That Viserys I should have expected betrayal from Alicent I don't really know. He apparently loved her, and that can make you blind. He understood what she wanted, but there is no sign that he had any reason to believe she would go as far as she actually went. He did apparently also never understand that she never loved him and their entire relationship and marriage was just a Hightower power grab (and that this was the case is, I think, made very plain when Alicent never speaks about her husband in her last days).

In that sense, the chances are not that bad that he accepted that they did not agree on the topic but was confident that she and Otto - as people close to him - would respect his wishes despite the fact that they did not agree. Sort of like Davos and Ned do what their kings command, even if they don't really agree all that much - and if they cannot bring themselves to do something they resign.

I mean, you have to keep in mind that both Otto and Alicent must have been on board with the Rhaenyra thing back in the day. The entire thing was Otto's idea. It is not that far-fetched to assume that Otto would come to see the wisdom in a choice he himself once eager supported...

A Great Council would have been a stupid idea. There would have been too much talk there, and too many opportunities of others to present their claims - like Daemon, the Velaryons, etc.

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1 hour ago, Eltharion21 said:

He could have made additional proclamations,  write will, royal processions or public swearing of oaths , since old was 20 something years before and there were certainly doubts about succession , even Black side tends to treat Rhaenyra's claim as exception and not the rule. 

What I've said all along. Viserys had a lot of options before him to reinforce his will. His failure to do so was an enormous error. He was an ostrich hiding his head in the sand. It was a real weakness, a real failure, on his part. 

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8 minutes ago, Ran said:

What I've said all along. Viserys had a lot of options before him to reinforce his will. His failure to do so was an enormous error. He was an ostrich hiding his head in the sand. It was a real weakness, a real failure, on his part. 

Well, it never comes up as an option - which is sort of odd, especially if you add Rhaenyra and Daemon to the equation. They apparently never felt the need to get another such grand ceremony which could also included a formal confirmation of Jacaerys Velaryon as second in line to the Iron Throne.

As I said somewhere else Daemon/Rhaenyra are great morons, too, considering that neither of them seems to have had any plans for the old man's death, or did they? Viserys I's death was apparently long expected, but - unlike back when Daemon was waiting for his own grandfather to bite the dust, he did not hire sellswords, etc. to prepare to push the claim of his wife.

What does that tell us? The only reasonable interpretation, it seems to me, that neither Rhaenyra nor Daemon nor their other allies actually did expect the Greens to stage a coup to prevent Rhaenyra's ascension to the Iron Throne. This also implies that what Otto and Alicent did was prepared with the utmost care and the greatest secrecy so that any Blacks at court - of which there were apparently a considerable number despite the fact that Rhaenyra was absent - don't even hear rumors about stuff like that.

In fact, it seems as if even the Small Council - aside from Cole, who seems to have been on board before - only learned what the Queen Dowager and the Hand were planning to do when they revealed their intentions to them.

But if that is the case - if Rhaenyra/Daemon did not expect to have to fight for the Iron Throne - then both escalation and the subsequent war actually could have been prevented. In fact, the actually felt tension in the Black camp must have been less extreme than the feelings of Corlys and Viserys back in 101 AC. Because there war was actually brewing while the king was still alive, with both sides amassing men, whereas in 129 AC nobody seems to have even prepared for a violent conflict.

Otto has to win allies in the small window of opportunity between the king's death and the public revelation of that fact. That's when he writes his letters. Not before.

For Rhaenyra/Daemon that's very odd considering that they had essentially free reign on Dragonstone since 120 AC. They could have built vast fleets, they could have hired sellsword companies using Velaryon gold, they could have ensured that, after the Vhagar debacle, the riderless dragons on their island were claimed by riders of their faction - docile Silverwing by Viserys, say, and Vermithor and Seasmoke by Daemon's daughters - rather throwing dragon eggs at their children.

And one assumes they would have either done all or at least some of that if they had had felt the need to prepare for the death of King Viserys I to ensure Rhaenyra's ascension to the Iron Throne.

From that angle all that talk of the Green Council justifying the coup really sounds like baseless paranoia...

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13 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

As I said somewhere else Daemon/Rhaenyra are great morons, too, considering that neither of them seems to have had any plans for the old man's death, or did they? Viserys I's death was apparently long expected

I think you have it backwards. Since Daemon and Rhaenyra did not have plans for the old man's death, then it's unlikely that Viserys I's death was long expected.

He was only 52, after all. Just as the Green Council was able to retain the news of the king's death for ten days, the fact that his health was suddenly deteriorating could have been kept away from the public. Viserys died on 3rd of the 3rd month, and according to Glyndayn it was only during the 2nd month of the year that "he had lost all appetite and was ruling the realm from his bed". By then, Rhaenyra was confined at bed in Dragonstone, in the later stages of her pregnancy. No one outside the inner circle of Greens would expect him to die soon.

And there's even another option: and if you, as I do, are partial to the idea that Viserys was poisoned by the greens, then you could also argue that all these comments saying that the king had been feeling unwell in the few months before his death was only bullshit spread by Alicent, Otto and Orwyle to cover the tracks of their crime.

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18 minutes ago, The hairy bear said:

I think you have it backwards. Since Daemon and Rhaenyra did not have plans for the old man's death, then it's unlikely that Viserys I's death was long expected.

Well, Eustace as cited by Gyldayn claims that his death had been expected for some time. And it seems that he had been ruling the Realm from his solar long before it became apparent that he would soon die.

Also, we have Rhaenyra and Gerardys arriving to save King Viserys after his wounds had gone and many had started to fear the king might die.

FaB finally gives us ample evidence as how strong the Black faction at court was when the king died (confirmed by the number of courtiers officers of the City Watch that are imprisoned). It seems rather odd to me that no Black at court would have kept Rhaenyra and Daemon appraised as to what happened to the king. Even if they had had no access to the king directly, the king not being seen at all sends a rather obvious message and of itself - that he not exactly healthy.

And if you actually expect the worst from your stepmother and her allies you should prepare for that, especially if you see that your father is no longer all that well.

The Old King was being dealt severe emotional blows in 100-101 AC, but he was still clear of mind. That only deteriorated in 103 AC when he was approaching death. Yet Corlys and Daemon didn't care about the old man then, and prepared for war.

The fact that neither Daemon nor Corlys did nothing of that sort in the last years of Viserys I doesn't strike me as very convincing. They are the same guys, and the stakes were, perhaps, even higher now than they were back in 101 AC. Rhaenyra and Alicent and their families actually despised each other, whereas the Velaryons and Viserys/Daemon apparently had more non-personal differences back in 101 AC. Their relationship doesn't seem to have been poisoned on the personal level.

Viserys I wasn't exactly a very stern king, and it was evident he was sick. Daemon/Corlys amassing men, etc. wouldn't have caused a sick Viserys I to do anything - just as the old Jaehaerys I couldn't do anything about Daemon/Corlys back in 101 AC.

18 minutes ago, The hairy bear said:

He was only 52, after all. Just as the Green Council was able to retain the news of the king's death for ten days, the fact that his health was suddenly deteriorating could have been kept away from the public. Viserys died on 3rd of the 3rd month, and according to Glyndayn it was only during the 2nd month of the year that "he had lost all appetite and was ruling the realm from his bed". By then, Rhaenyra was confined at bed in Dragonstone, in the later stages of her pregnancy. No one outside the inner circle of Greens would expect him to die soon.

Well, Orwyle was no Green, and Beesbury was neither. Do we expect the Grand Maester did not attend the king in his sickness? Do we think that he didn't talk to anyone about that, and what his death - if it were to happen - would mean for the Realm? Do we think that Princess Helaena and the children did not talk to servants and companions and friends - not all of which would have to be stalwart Greens - how bad the king's health was? I don't think so.

And Rhaenyra was somehow informed by people at court that her father was close to death when he lost his fingers.

18 minutes ago, The hairy bear said:

And there's even another option: and if you, as I do, are partial to the idea that Viserys was poisoned by the greens, then you could also argue that all these comments saying that the king had been feeling unwell in the few months before his death was only bullshit spread by Alicent, Otto and Orwyle to cover the tracks of their crime.

I'm pretty partial to that idea since Viserys I died at a very opportune moment for the Green and at a very bad moment for Rhaenyra, but just because Rhaenyra was about to give birth doesn't mean her people couldn't have prepared for the day of the king's death, too.

She was also informed about Mellos' death later in 127 AC, and clashed with Alicent over the appointment of a new Grand Maester.

Your idea that there may have been some disinformation on the Green has some merit, though, since the the claim that Mushroom's attended the ailing king when he was confined to his solar and later his bed is clearly wrong (although it is odd that Mushroom himself spreads that story). However, it is supposed he was surrounded by maesters and septons at that time, so he would not have been completely isolated.

But the general idea that he actually improved considerable due to Orwyle's treatment makes sense. I was more under the impression that Viserys I's death may have indeed be just hastened, whereas his illnesses - gout, chest pains, and shortness of breath - were real things, based completely on his, most likely, not exactly healthy lifestyle, not him being slowly poisoned.

Even if we tone down my idea somewhat then Rhaenyra/Daemon's inaction certainly does not send the message that they were expecting the succession to be contested - i.e. they were surprised by the Green coup. And that, in turn, means they had actually not believed/expected Otto and Alicent and Cole to betray Viserys I and her the way they did and that they had no plan brutally cleanse the court of all of Alicent's kin and friends once Rhaenyra finally came into her throne.

It also mean they had felt no need to renew the vow the lords had sworn to Rhaenyra back in 105 AC. Else they would have pushed Viserys I for something like that.

Because when you want to do that you should have sizable army to immediately seize power at court and seize all people you want to imprison/kill.

The man presiding over Rhaenyra's coronation would have been Viserys I's Hand, Ser Otto Hightower. He would rule the Realm until Rhaenyra was properly crowned queen. And Rhaenyra and Daemon would have known that - and apparently never felt the need to prepare for that moment.

Also, the fact that they have to reach out to various lords and houses after they learn of the king's death proves that they had not done so in the past. They never bothered to recruit Borros to their side, for instance, nor did they care to win Jeyne Arryn or the Northmen to their cause. Rhaenyra had friends in the Riverlands - going back to the days of her progress in 112 AC - but there is no hint that she or Daemon ever bothered to renew those ties in preparation for the day the king died.

All that, I say, means that Rhaenyra and Daemon did not expect that there would be a contested succession when Viserys I died.

And if one side in the Dance of the Dragons had no idea that it would come to that then the chances that King Viserys I expected such an escalation is even less likely.

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I think we're all biased for the Blacks since it originates in something very much Evil Stepmother-like. The whole Dance could be interpreted as a really dark version of Snow White or Cinderella.

Lines like "Is Aegon King or do we have to kiss the old whore's cunny" is rather hard to sympathise with for most.

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Posted (edited)
2 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

Well, Eustace as cited by Gyldayn claims that his death had been expected for some time.

Eustace says that the king's death had been anticipated by the Greens. Which is exactly my point. We have no indication that anyone outside them suspected that the king's days were numbered.

2 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

Also, we have Rhaenyra and Gerardys arriving to save King Viserys after his wounds had gone and many had started to fear the king might die.

Visery's amputation took place in 126 AC, three years after his death. I don't think that there is any medical justification to assume that the two events were related. From this period, Glyndayn only says that the king was "troubled" by gout, chest pains, and shortness of breath. None of this could be a consequence of having two fingers cut.

Also, none of those three symptoms (in a 52 year old, slightly obese nobleman) suggests an early death.

2 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

It seems rather odd to me that no Black at court would have kept Rhaenyra and Daemon appraised as to what happened to the king. Even if they had had no access to the king directly, the king not being seen at all sends a rather obvious message and of itself - that he not exactly healthy.

The text tells us that the king had been leaving more and more the governance of the realm to his council, and held court at his solar. Then it's by the second moon of 129 that "His Grace had lost all appetite and was ruling the realm from his bed". And it's at the 3r day of the 3rd moon that he dies.

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Viserys I wasn't exactly a very stern king, and it was evident he was sick.

Doran Martell is the other example of a noble with gout that we have. He, in fact, have a lot of similarities with Viserys I: He is also soft and shapless, and is unable to walk. He is also somehow retired from the day to day politics, staying in the Water Gardens while his counselors rule at Sunspear. And coincidentally, he is exactly the same age as Viserys I was when he died: 52.

And yet, we don't see people in Dorne planning for his imminent death.

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Orwyle was no Green,

I say he was. :P

He is the only source that we have of the Green Council, and he presents himself as the voice of reasons and the one who hesitates to go ahead with the coup, but I don't believe him. And I don't buy that the Hightowers had not enough influence at the Citadel to ensure that a candidate that suited their interests was chosen.

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Even if we tone down my idea somewhat then Rhaenyra/Daemon's inaction certainly does not send the message that they were expecting the succession to be contested - i.e. they were surprised by the Green coup. And that, in turn, means they had actually not believed/expected Otto and Alicent and Cole to betray Viserys I and her the way they did and that they had no plan brutally cleanse the court of all of Alicent's kin and friends once Rhaenyra finally came into her throne.

Yeah, I agree with you here. If feel that they didn't expect Viserys's death to happen anytime soon, but in any case, they didn't expect a coup to take place.

I think that they relied in some of the members of the council that ended betraying them. In Lord Beesbury, of course, they could trust. I assume that they also counted in the support of Larys (the Strongs had been blacks all along, and Rhaenyra's kids could be his nephews), and assumed that Orwyle would remain neutral as Mellos did. Perhaps they even had reasons to assume Lord Tyland would take their side.

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All that, I say, means that Rhaenyra and Daemon did not expect that there would be a contested succession when Viserys I died.

And if one side in the Dance of the Dragons had no idea that it would come to that then the chances that King Viserys I expected such an escalation is even less likely.

Fair enough.

Edited by The hairy bear

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Posted (edited)
4 hours ago, The hairy bear said:

Eustace says that the king's death had been anticipated by the Greens. Which is exactly my point. We have no indication that anyone outside them suspected that the king's days were numbered.

Not only by the Greens:

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Septon Eustace, writing on these events some years later, points out that the manservant delivered his dire tidings directly to the queen, and her alone, without raising a general alarum. Eustace does not believe this was wholly fortuitous; the king’s death had been anticipated for some time, he argues, and Queen Alicent and her party, the so-called greens, had taken care to instruct all of Viserys’s guards and servants in what to do when the day came.

I think that means that Viserys I's death had been expected by all who knew of his condition, i.e. more or less generally at court, but Alicent had carefully prepared things so she and her Greens would be able to control the information when that happened.

This is also a part where Cole's role can likely not be overestimated. As Lord Commander of the Kingsguard he was in charge of the king's protection, meaning that it would have been very easy to ensure that all of Viserys I's attendants and guardsmen were men he could trust - even outside the Kingsguard as such.

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Visery's amputation took place in 126 AC, three years before his death. I don't think that there is any medical justification to assume that the two events were related. From this period, Glyndayn only says that the king was "troubled" by gout, chest pains, and shortness of breath. None of this could be a consequence of having two fingers cut.

Oh, I didn't mean related medically, but rather that Rhaenyra got the info on her father's bad health back in 126 AC, but not later on in 129 AC.

Gout clearly would be a disease the guy actually suffered from, and I guess that the chest pains and shortness of breath were also ailments that came naturally as consequences of his lifestyle because the description of the man you give here

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Also, none of those three symptoms (in a 52 year old, slightly obese nobleman) suggests an early death.

doesn't seem to reflect the description Gyldayn gives here:

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Even this did not end the matter, however. Ser Vaemond’s younger cousins fled to King’s Landing with his wife and sons, there to cry for justice and place their claims before the king and queen. King Viserys had grown extremely fat and red of face, and scarce had the strength to mount the steps to the Iron Throne.

That is before the amputation of the fingers, and this entire ordeal would have certainly weakened him further, as is confirmed here:

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As the Seven Kingdoms welcomed the 129th year after Aegon’s Conquest with bonfires, feasts, and bacchanals, King Viserys I Targaryen was growing ever weaker. His chest pains had grown so severe that he could no longer climb a flight of steps, and had to be carried about the Red Keep in a chair. By the second moon of the year, His Grace had lost all appetite and was ruling the realm from his bed…when he felt strong enough to rule at all.

The bold obviously is something everybody at court would have witnessed, and is thus something that the Blacks at court would have reported to Rhaenyra on Dragonstone. The idea that the guys thought the king not being able to work as a sign that he would live another twenty years and not die soon is not exactly convincing to me...

I think chances are not that bad that Viserys I sort of was approaching the size of his great-grandson, Aegon IV, in his last years. Extremely fat is not 'slightly obese'. And under those circumstances - and in that society, where leeching is actually a common treatment the man had to undergo - it is hardly surprising that he didn't get that old.

Which doesn't mean he wasn't poisoned in the end.

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The text tells us that the king had been leaving more and more the governance of the realm to his council, and held court at his solar. Then it's by the second moon of 129 that "His Grace had lost all appetite and was ruling the realm from his bed". And it's at the 3r day of the 3rd moon that he dies.

He could certainly have died of a heart-attack or something along those lines, but it doesn't seem he suffered from an illness that killed him slowly by weakening him further and further. He was well enough to receive his daughter and grandchildren, and their is no mentioning of nurses and maesters and other people caring for him all the time. If we recall Helaena's custom to call upon her mother before bringing the children to bed it seems likely she had the same daily routine for her father before he died - meaning Viserys I was visited by her and his grandchildren in the evening and did not exactly spend much time alone in his bedchamber as a corpse before he was discovered.

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Doran Martell is the other example of a noble with gout that we have. He, in fact, have a lot of similarities with Viserys I: He is also soft and shapless, and is unable to walk. He is also somehow retired from the day to day politics, staying in the Water Gardens while his counselors rule at Sunspear. And coincidentally, he is exactly the same age as Viserys I was when he died: 52.

And yet, we don't see people in Dorne planning for his imminent death.

Oh, Arianne did, in a way. But Doran just has gout, he does not have other issues that we know of. Although he certainly is slowly killing himself by continuing to drink alcohol while having gout. Gout alone certainly weakens you but even in Westeros it doesn't kill you right away. Viserys I was in completely different shape in the last years of his life.

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I say he was. :P

He is the only source that we have of the Green Council, and he presents himself as the voice of reasons and the one who hesitates to go ahead with the coup, but I don't believe him. And I don't buy that the Hightowers had not enough influence at the Citadel to ensure that a candidate that suited their interests was chosen.

Well, he is introduced as a neutral guy and, more importantly, a new man on the council. And the way the Green Council is presented strongly implies the plan of the coup was presented to the other councilors then and there (by others I mean anybody but Otto, Alicent, and Cole), and that there had been no preparations involving anyone from that circle beforehand.

And it certainly seems that Larys Strong only made his decision after the murder of Beesbury - which pretty much sent the message to anyone present that the Hightowers would show no mercy to anyone siding with Rhaenyra.

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Yeah, I agree with you here. If feel that they didn't expect Viserys's death to happen anytime soon, but in any case, they didn't expect a coup to take place.

Exactly.

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I think that they relied in some of the members of the council that ended betraying them. In Lord Beesbury, of course, they could trust. I assume that they also counted in the support of Larys (the Strongs had been blacks all along, and Rhaenyra's kids could be his nephews), and assumed that Orwyle would remain neutral as Mellos did. Perhaps they even had reasons to assume Lord Tyland would take their side.

Well, I buy that Orwyle didn't lie about his opening remarks. That reads as if he was testing the waters there, and then fell in with the others. Wylde seems to be a guy favoring the Greens, but one doubts that he would have tried to prevent Rhaenyra's rise if Otto and Alicent hadn't led the way. And that goes for Tyland, too, although here I suspect that both he and Jason were pissed that Rhaenyra did not marry them. They were the great Lannisters of Casterly Rock, the most noble family of Westeros after the Targaryens themselves (at least in their mind), keen to acquire dragons of their own since the days of Lord Lyman, and Rhaenyra's hand wouldn't only have given them dragons but the Iron Throne, too. And she rejected them when they asked for her hand.

Tywin didn't take Aerys II's rejection that well, either.

Edited by Lord Varys

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Posted (edited)

@Lord Varys

In that case, why didn't one of them demand Jaehaerys (or Daeron for that matter) be betrothed to Tyshara? Or Jaehaera be promised to Loreon? 

Edited by The Grey Wolf

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3 minutes ago, The Grey Wolf said:

@Lord Varys

In that case, why didn't one of them demand Jaehaerys (or Daeron for that matter) be betrothed to Tyshara? Or Jaehaera be promised to Loreon? 

In the beginning the Greens only had Ser Tyland, who was at court, a second son likely eager for advancement and dependent on the king to get that. Tyland is promoted from Master of Ships (a position he may have kept for the time being since Dalton Greyjoy did not accept the offer to replace Tyland) to Master of Coin, and may have actually aimed at the Handship some time later. The Greens did not have Casterly Rock and the West in a meaningful sense as the first year of the war shows. Tyland was Jason's twin and one assumes that was a pretty good connection (although Tyland later not giving a damn about the plights of the West may imply that the reason Tyland was at court and not at Casterly Rock was that these twins were not exactly as close as Jaime and Cersei). In any case, having the brother of the Lord of Casterly Rock on your council is better if you want the West to help you than if you don't have him. But it is no guarantee that you get much out of the whole thing.

Lord Jason only bestirred himself - and with a rather meager force at that - when Aemond came up with his foolish plan to break the Black Riverlords and retake Harrenhal. And at that time this was a royal command, not something he offered to do out of the goodness of his heart or the love he bore for the king. If Jason had been keen to involve himself in the fighting he would have acted sooner and he would raised have much more men.

Tyland certainly may have asked for or aimed at a royal marriage had he had any children (and had there been royal women around for him to marry). And Jason may have demanded something like that had Aegon II ever been indebted to him - as did Borros later.

It is rather difficult to even count the Lannisters as Greens in the war. Their support was lukewarm at best. Even Borros Baratheon showed more initiative. Jason only moves his ass when he is asked, not because he thinks he owes it to Aegon II to support them, and Lady Johanna later flatly turns him down.

If I had to guess then the Lannisters would have preferred to sit out that one, getting stronger while the others who involved themselves got weaker, but with Tyland being at court they allowed themselves to be drawn in.

It is a curious thing that aside from Aemond nobody ever seemed to think about making betrothals for the children. I guess Jaehaerys and Jaehaera were supposed to marry each other, but Maelor and Daeron were available - although I'm rather confident that Alicent would have liked it if Daeron had married one of his Hightower cousins - the sister of Lyonel, perhaps, or one of Alicent's nieces.

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Posted (edited)

@Lord Varys

I agree about the lack of betrothals on the Green side but disagree on the issue of the Lannisters.

1. Jason raised way more men than Borros (1K knights and 7K archers/men-at arms as opposed to the latter's 600 knights and 4000 foot).

2. He did as Aemond bid him to do without asking for any kind of reward (so far as we know).

3. The Lannisters couldn't field another army for the Greens because of the Ironborn.

4. Between losses to the Ironborn and losses to the Rivermen the Lannisters paid quite a price for supporting Aegon II.

5. The army led by Lord Jason included House Swyft, House Reyne, House Crakehall, House Tarbeck, House Lefford, and Lannisport. That is a number of major families.

6. Speaking of numbers I think we both agree that the army sizes in the Dance are an issue.

Edited by The Grey Wolf

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1 hour ago, The Grey Wolf said:

@Lord Varys

I agree about the lack of betrothals on the Green side but disagree on the issue of the Lannisters.

Oh, well, I just said lukewarm support, not no support ;-).

1 hour ago, The Grey Wolf said:

1. Jason raised way more men than Borros (1K knights and 7K archers/men-at arms as opposed to the latter's 600 knights and 4000 foot).

But that's not the comparison - the comparison is the military potential of the West to Jason's host, and that at a point in time when he really had no reason to expect the Ironborn would attack him.

1 hour ago, The Grey Wolf said:

2. He did as Aemond bid him to do without asking for any kind of reward (so far as we know).

Sure, but he did less than he could have done, no? And he acted at a time when the Green cause was actually looking pretty good. Lucerys and Rhaenys and Jacaerys and their dragons were dead, Rhaenyra was (seemingly) crippled by grief, the Gullet had dealt a considerable blow to House Velaryon, and at the Honeywine Lord Ormund had crushed the Black rebels in the Reach.

Rhaenyra's forces were effectively defeated. The only rebels still in the field were in the Riverlands and those would now be crushed by Lord Jason and Prince Aemond. 

Hardly a bold decision on his part. More like siding with the guy he thought had already won and helping him with a safe cleanup campaign, like Tywin would do later during the Rebellion, and Lord Lyman did during the reign of Maegor.

I mean, he would be working in concert with the rider of the greatest living dragon. Nobody would stand against Vhagar in battle. Not even Daemon on Caraxes.

It also seems to me that the small host Jason actually raised was originally only raised to protect the West from attacks from the Riverlands rather than a force to truly involve himself in the struggle on a large scale. By the time Aemond's plan is discussed Jason already has those men in the western hills. But he needs a royal command to actually use them. In that sense you can compare him to Doran during the War of the Five Kings.

1 hour ago, The Grey Wolf said:

3. The Lannisters couldn't field another army for the Greens because of the Ironborn.

That doesn't make sense in light of what Dalton actually did - conquer Fair Isle, sack Lannisport, and later attack Kayce - especially in comparison to the size of the Westerlands and the population there. The Westermen do not all live at the coast, and there is no talk about Ironborn at, say, the Golden Tooth. Technically they could have raised another 10,000 men while also resisting the Ironborn - who they could not really threaten, anyway, because they lacked the ships.

They did not raise another army because they did not want to do that. Most likely for understandable reasons, but still. You can compare the resources of the West there to the resources of the Reach in the main series. The Ironborn threaten them with their entire might, yet House Tyrell can still afford to fight a war at two fronts. It might not be a great idea to do that, but it is doable. And it would have been doable for the Lannisters during the Dance, too. They just didn't want to do that.

1 hour ago, The Grey Wolf said:

4. Between losses to the Ironborn and losses to the Rivermen the Lannisters paid quite a price for supporting Aegon II.

But that has nothing to do with the depth of their conviction, does it? And they did not pay a price for their allegiance to Aegon II, they paid the price for invading the Riverlands and killing the people there.

1 hour ago, The Grey Wolf said:

5. The army led by Lord Jason included House Swyft, House Reyne, House Crakehall, House Tarbeck, House Lefford, and Lannisport. That is a number of major families.

Sure, but it does not even remotely reflect the strength all those houses could have fielded if they had actually wanted to field a large army. And that is an issue.

With the West it is really glaring that they didn't give a damn. The Stormlands cannot field that many men, and Borros actually had confirmed Blacks among his bannermen, and his KL campaign sort of grew out of his Vulture King thing, whereas the Hightowers were truly committed.

If the Lannisters had given a damn Aegon II would have gotten 2-3 armies from them, like Joffrey got during the War of the Five Kings. And they are still not spent.

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On 3/4/2019 at 11:06 PM, Lord Varys said:

But a king does not rule his descendants when he is dead, does he? Nor in old age when his grandchildren prepare for war, like Daemon and Corlys did. The great Conciliator was a weak and impotent old man after his second son had died. His word could not pretend a war, that's why he had to call the Great Council.

For man to rule others , he should rule himself,  people like Viserys or Robert are some examples of lack of that ability. Wiser kings will enforce their will, law and stability through mechanisms that will enforce continuation for some time after their deaths. In both cases realm fell apart moments after their deaths.

On 3/4/2019 at 11:06 PM, Lord Varys said:

And what decisions should that have been? The suggestion to singularly favor one side is a ridiculous suggestion. No father does that kind of thing, and no king can, unless he wants to be a kinslayer.

Fathers quite often favor one side, is present even today with inheriting of companies or even property to preserve legacy and not split it though it maybe isn't always just.  It is large space between giving one side advantage to enforce his will and committing kinslaying. Though in my opinion  Daemon deserved to be killed after making so many impudent affronts toward the King.

On 3/4/2019 at 11:06 PM, Lord Varys said:

We do know nothing about Viserys I own accomplishments thanks to George only caring about relaying court gossip, but it wouldn't have been the most peaceful - no wars on Westerosi soil at all - and the most prosperous reign if the king had been a moron. He knew how to rule, and he knew how to surround himself with competent people.

Maybe we will get his accomplishments in next revision of the story so that you can be right, or maybe it is better we get F&B2, Dunk and Egg or dare I say TWOW.
Prosperity of the realm in my opinion is more thank to Jaeharys wise rule, he did surround himself with competent people who were in small council , Otto Hightower was hand for most of his reign, Tyland showed that also, maybe Corlys though Daemon, Aegon II and Rhaenyra show lack of that trait.

His failures usually are from his overriding the advice of those more competent.

On 3/4/2019 at 11:06 PM, Lord Varys said:

He certainly could have taken steps to prevent the Green coup. That would have been in his power. But a succession war in general? Probably not. That could have only worked if he had taken out some of his grandsons - and what kind of grandfather does that?

Aegon the Conqueror should also have killed Maegor as soon as he understood what kind of person that one was. A blind man could have seen that this creature was a danger to Aegon's beloved grandchildren. But he didn't do that. Does this mean Aegon is responsible for Maegor's usurpation and the subsequent murders of his grandsons? Yes and no.

One should also keep in mind that those people live in a medieval world. Any day can be your last even without succession squabbles or personal vendettas. Jaehaerys and Alysanne outlived an army of her own children, and Viserys I could have done the same. If he had he would have needed the spare heirs he happened to have.

There are people who suggest that Viserys I should have simply never remarried - but he had just a single heir, and his brother was childless, too. Simply remembering his mother and father would have shown Viserys that children do not always outlive their parents. If Rhaenyra had predeceased Viserys I he would have been back to Daemon again, who he did not want to succeed him, and who didn't have heirs of his body, either.

A king cutting down the tree to just one branch during his life - by removing other children from the succession through various means - may have end up having no (clear) heir at all. That kind of thing could have been worse than the Dance of the Dragons was.

If his successor or its representatives were  present in Kings Landing is the least of many ways to do it. Is murder the only way you can think of solving issues. 

We can’t be sure what would have happened if Aegon killed Maegor considering things didn’t go immediately to manure moment he died, but after few years. Some of Maegors actions actually strengthened Targaryen position in the realm. It is more fault of Aenys’s weakness or even Visenya could have done maybe more regarding Maegor, she had second most powerful dragon.

Especially since they live in uncertain world , there should be more thought given to the rule of Kingdom, using experiences of past rulers.
Viserys could have married Velaryons himself instead and later marry his heir someone close to that House ( even Celtigar). Keeping power in the hands of one branch. But he married for love or lust  in powerful house and formed separate branch, while he married heir to other strong house.

Targaryens base their power in dragons and fealty of Lords, if the dragons are spread too much among the houses , fealty of Lords will not hold too long, not even standing army could counter that , so policy of Dragon inheritance and use would be key.
It is possible that different players and especially Essosi when seen Targaryens dragon grow in number were afraid of new Valyria and decided to nudge Targaryens to self destruction a bit, through use of intrigue and assassination.

On 3/4/2019 at 11:06 PM, Lord Varys said:

Can you describe how that should have worked in detail? You are aware that Criston Cole is in the Kingsguard, right? And they serve for life. He was Rhaenyra's sworn enemy. Even if Viserys I had somehow neutralized Alicent and his own sons, it would have been rather difficult to get rid of that fellow.

I could describe but I feel it would be wast of time in this thread especially.

You overestimate power of Ser Criston Cole. If you want to remove Kingsguard who you consider destabilizing factor, just send him on some quest on the end of the world, Asshai, Valyria or even Dorne could do like Willam the Wasp’s quest, Swann or Oakheart's.

On 3/4/2019 at 11:06 PM, Lord Varys said:

Nobody said Viserys I himself treated Rhaenyra as the heir as 'the rule'. Sure, another public ceremony with lords swearing vows would have been a great idea. And one can assume the guy had a will - he was sick for years and his death likely didn't come as a surprise to him. But since his wife and court allowed him to rot in his bedchamber we can be sure they didn't even look for a will - much less had any intention of publicly reading it.

That Viserys I wanted Rhaenyra to succeed him was clear to all. There was no doubt about that.

But compare the outbreak of the Dance to the War of the Five Kings. Did Robert make it unclear that Joffrey was his heir? No. Did any of his brothers care? No. Did Ned or Jaime or Tywin give a damn about Robert's wish that they should not fight? No.

What else can you do? And how aware was Robert/Viserys about the animosities in his own family/the hatred among his closest allies? We cannot pretend we know. Robert seems to have had no clue that Renly wanted to kill his children, that Stannis would kill his wife and children and their brother, that Joffrey would execute his dear friend Ned, etc.

There is also publicly proclaimed and written will, when they wanted to influence public in Westeros , earlier kings invented royal processions, it would be great when realm was already peaceful and prosperous to visit Lords with his heir or send only his heir with its dragon.
There remained lot of doubt , many people were uncertain who should rule considering things changed a lot since more than 20 years he asked Lords to swear fealty to her.

Regarding Your philosophy of  unquestionably adhering to will of KIng:

Kings are also men ,and all men are fallible.

If men follow King's wishes even if they would bring ruin to them, that isn't kingdom of men but of Lemmings. 


Outbreaks of both Civil wars share some similarities, mostly incompetence of both Kings. Robert was great warrior but awful king. Robert had put Lord Eddard Stark as regent until his heir is of age, he tried to remedy some of mess while dying though it was too late. If realm falls apart moments after the King dies lot of it has to do with actions or lack of them by the dead King. Tywin and Stannis both were gathering soldiers  even while he was hunting boars.

Those weren’t Roberts children, Stannis and Renly  could have made a deal  but it came to battle in which they both planed to kill each other.

On 3/4/2019 at 11:06 PM, Lord Varys said:

Do you presume he should have known that? What reason had Viserys I to believe that his wife and father-in-law and Lord Commander of the Kingsguard would betray him as soon as he died?

Having half functioning brain would do as evident  from the text:
 

Spoiler

 

Queen Alicent had her own candidate: her eldest son, Prince Aegon, Rhaenyra’s half-brother. But Aegon was a boy, the princess ten years his elder. Moreover, the two half-siblings had never gotten on well. “All the more reason to bind them together in marriage,” the queen argued. Viserys did not agree. “The boy is Alicent’s own blood,” he told Lord Strong. “She wants him on the throne.”


Still, questions persisted, not the least from Queen Alicent herself. Loudest amongst her supporters was her father, Ser Otto Hightower, Hand of the King. Pushed too far on the matter, in 109 AC Viserys stripped Ser Otto of his chain of office and named in his place the taciturn Lord of Harrenhal, Lyonel Strong. “This Hand will not hector me,” His Grace proclaimed.


King Viserys was most wroth as well; a joyous celebration had become the occasion of grief and recrimination. It was said that Queen Alicent did not share his displeasure, however; soon after, she asked that Ser Criston Cole be made her personal protector. The coolness between the king’s wife and the king’s daughter was plain for all to see; even envoys from the Free Cities made note of it in letters sent back to Pentos, Braavos, and Old Volantis.

 

 

On 3/4/2019 at 11:06 PM, Lord Varys said:

Daemon was a problem in the first half of Viserys' reign, not the second. After he married Rhaenyra he settled down and troubled no one.

Not sure how exactly the Stepstones War was foolishness. Just leaving without finishing the job was bad, but eradicating the pirates and possibly even crushing the Three Daughters - why not? If the Iron Throne ended up controlling the Stepstones they could grow ever richer and play the part the Triarchy played previously.

Daemon was problem until he died, Your claim has no evidence in his reported actions and atrocities committed or proposed during the war. Odd behavior with Nettles and his last stand could be also his growing tired of leading his life , like the many things he got bored of.


That  war was foolishness and the very definition of failure. They made enemies and united Triarchy, then Triarchy was in war against divided part of Westeros , destroying part of its power.
Iron Throne still doesn't control Stepstones, it was stupid private war. Targaryens could have sent more dragons and created small kingdoms for their squabbling. family instead  eventually imploding and loosing main source of their power.


 

Edited by Eltharion21

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4 hours ago, Eltharion21 said:

For man to rule others , he should rule himself,  people like Viserys or Robert are some examples of lack of that ability. Wiser kings will enforce their will, law and stability through mechanisms that will enforce continuation for some time after their deaths. In both cases realm fell apart moments after their deaths.

No king in Westeros ever did such a thing. It is impossible there, because rule is personal and not done by institutions. Even the Conqueror failed to prevent the uprisings that began immediately after his death (not the Faith Militant Uprising, but the ones before that).

4 hours ago, Eltharion21 said:

Fathers quite often favor one side, is present even today with inheriting of companies or even property to preserve legacy and not split it though it maybe isn't always just.  It is large space between giving one side advantage to enforce his will and committing kinslaying. Though in my opinion  Daemon deserved to be killed after making so many impudent affronts toward the King.

Well, royal children are not treated like Cinderella in this world, regardless where in the line of succession they feature. And Viserys I did prefer Rhaenyra to the others, obviously.

No Targaryen king in this world ever executed a brother, making it very clear that you don't do that kind of thing. Your opinion on the matter is therefore your opinion but not in concert with the customs and practices of this world. There is a reason why you don't want to be called kinslayer in Westeros. And Daemon never actually betrayed his brother in a political sense.

4 hours ago, Eltharion21 said:

Prosperity of the realm in my opinion is more thank to Jaeharys wise rule, he did surround himself with competent people who were in small council , Otto Hightower was hand for most of his reign, Tyland showed that also, maybe Corlys though Daemon, Aegon II and Rhaenyra show lack of that trait.

Viserys I wasn't the most diligent of kings, but he did actually run the government. It is only in his last years when his sickness more and immobilizes him that he leaves 'more and more' to his Hand and his council. The likes of Tyland - who was a young man and a recent addition to the council - had anything to do with the prosperity of the Realm is not exactly very likely. The man didn't even get the Iron Throne a sizable fleet.

It was a conscious decision on Viserys I's part to continue his grandfather's projects and finishing them, and he and his advisers made the decisions which ensured continued peace and prosperity. The man could have taken all the gold he inherited to waste it in a fortnight - like Robert more or less did with the fortune Aerys II had left him.

Aegon II only shows incompetence and wanton cruelty. Rhaenyra is in an impossible situation in KL. She needs money, and she needs a man she can trust as Master of Coin. If you were in her position - in the middle of a war and surrounded by enemies - you would also think first about winning the war and securing your own power rather than risking to lose power and war by putting a man in high office who may betray you.

4 hours ago, Eltharion21 said:

His failures usually are from his overriding the advice of those more competent.

When exactly does he do that?

4 hours ago, Eltharion21 said:

If his successor or its representatives were  present in Kings Landing is the least of many ways to do it. Is murder the only way you can think of solving issues.

Actually, it should not have mattered where Rhaenyra was. Alicent and Otto were obliged to crown the rightful heir. That's what Viserys I expected of them. They are not absolved from their treason just because Viserys I made it easy for them to betray him. That certainly is a mistake, but as I lay out above - it is quite obvious that Rhaenyra and Daemon did not expect a coup or succession war to happen (else they would have prepared for that, like Corlys and Daemon had prepared for that back in 101 AC). If that's the case then Viserys I was even less likely to expect a succession war.

Which means Otto and Alicent and Cole succeeded not only in fooling the king but also Rhaenyra and Daemon and their allies about their ultimate intentions.

Thus there was no reason whatsoever for anyone to 'resolve' anything. Rhaenyra was the heir and Viserys I' wife and other children had to accept that. That was the deal.

It is a delusion on part of the reader that the contemporaries in the 120s thought the Dance was inevitable. From hindsight it might seem that way, but for the contemporaries it was not.

4 hours ago, Eltharion21 said:

We can’t be sure what would have happened if Aegon killed Maegor considering things didn’t go immediately to manure moment he died, but after few years. Some of Maegors actions actually strengthened Targaryen position in the realm. It is more fault of Aenys’s weakness or even Visenya could have done maybe more regarding Maegor, she had second most powerful dragon.

Maegor sadistic and psychopathic nature becomes clear rather early in his life. And his mother constantly tries to advance him over his older half-brother and his nephews and nieces. The man isn't an asset, he is a liability. A potential threat to the succession of Aenys and his children.

Maegor nearly bankrupted the Iron Throne, and he did not strengthen House Targaryen, he basically tried to eradicate it, killing two sons of his brother. Had Maegor gotten to Jaehaerys, too, House Targaryen would have died with Maegor on the Iron Throne.

4 hours ago, Eltharion21 said:

Especially since they live in uncertain world , there should be more thought given to the rule of Kingdom, using experiences of past rulers.
Viserys could have married Velaryons himself instead and later marry his heir someone close to that House ( even Celtigar). Keeping power in the hands of one branch. But he married for love or lust  in powerful house and formed separate branch, while he married heir to other strong house.

I'm not sure why you believe Laena Velaryon wouldn't have wanted her sons - assuming she would have had any - to come before Rhaenyra and her children? The issue here is not that Alicent was a Hightower, but that Alicent gave the king sons. 

4 hours ago, Eltharion21 said:

You overestimate power of Ser Criston Cole. If you want to remove Kingsguard who you consider destabilizing factor, just send him on some quest on the end of the world, Asshai, Valyria or even Dorne could do like Willam the Wasp’s quest, Swann or Oakheart's.

Cole was the Lord Commander. Those guys usually are not sent away all that often. For the rest, see above.

4 hours ago, Eltharion21 said:

Outbreaks of both Civil wars share some similarities, mostly incompetence of both Kings. Robert was great warrior but awful king. Robert had put Lord Eddard Stark as regent until his heir is of age, he tried to remedy some of mess while dying though it was too late. If realm falls apart moments after the King dies lot of it has to do with actions or lack of them by the dead King. Tywin and Stannis both were gathering soldiers  even while he was hunting boars.

Those weren’t Roberts children, Stannis and Renly  could have made a deal  but it came to battle in which they both planed to kill each other.

Sure, Robert knew something was amiss between his friend and the Lannisters, but even he didn't foresee that Joff would execute Ned, right? That the boy would be willing and capable of doing that to man he most definitely loved more than his wife, his two brothers, and his children by Cersei.

And this has nothing to do with blindness or anything, you simply don't expect people close to you to treat other people you are close to in such a fashion.

4 hours ago, Eltharion21 said:

Having half functioning brain would do as evident  from the text.

Sorry, that's back from the 100s and early 110s. That's not the 120s. Not after Viserys I decided he would hear no more of the succession issue.

He certainly could have reinforced it later, but it is also rather obvious that the entire Realm had known - and younger generations had grown up expecting that - Rhaenyra would be queen one day. 

It is not that Otto and Alicent had openly declared in the (late) 120s that Aegon the Elder should be king or that they had openly tried to win allies for that kind of thing. That did not happen.

4 hours ago, Eltharion21 said:

Daemon was problem until he died, Your claim has no evidence in his reported actions and atrocities committed or proposed during the war. Odd behavior with Nettles and his last stand could be also his growing tired of leading his life , like the many things he got bored of.

Sure, during the Dance he did some cruel things - but only in a war started by the Greens, let us not forget this. My point was that Daemon did not trouble anyone - least of all his Hightower-in-laws or nephews - after he had married Rhaenyra in 120 AC and settled down on Dragonstone.

4 hours ago, Eltharion21 said:

That  war was foolishness and the very definition of failure. They made enemies and united Triarchy, then Triarchy was in war against divided part of Westeros , destroying part of its power.
Iron Throne still doesn't control Stepstones, it was stupid private war. Targaryens could have sent more dragons and created small kingdoms for their squabbling. family instead  eventually imploding and loosing main source of their power.

Actually, the Triarchy had united long before that, and their taking over the Stepstones caused severe problems for the Westerosi because they effectively blackmailed and plundered the ships traveling through the Stepstones.

The stupid thing was that Daemon didn't properly see it through, not that he started it.

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Posted (edited)

@Lord Varys

I'd agree but the text says the Ironborn are the main reason why they didn't field another army led by, say, Lord Roland Westerling. Also, in the second half of the war the Riverlords only field new armies when visited by an actual dragon and when they feel threatened by the rival claimant, neither of which applies to the Lannisters.

Edited by The Grey Wolf

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5 minutes ago, The Grey Wolf said:

@Lord Varys

I'd agree but the text says the Ironborn are the main reason why they didn't field another army led by, say, Lord Roland Westerling. Also, in the second half of the war the Riverlords only field new armies when visited by an actual dragon and when they feel threatened by the rival claimant, neither of which applies to the Lannisters.

I'd say the reason there is pretty glaring. The king is supposed to protect his lords and people and ensure that the King's Peace is kept. Lady Johanna did not only lose a husband thanks to Aegon II, the loyalty of House Lannister to that king also brought the Ironborn down on her coast. At this point, House Lannister had any right to expect help from the Iron Throne, not the other way around. Yet none such help was forthcoming. And essentially merer moments after Jason had left the West KL fell to Rhaenyra and Aegon II disappeared.

As I think I've pointed out a couple of times when discussion Aemond the utter moron, and his inability to politically make use of the dragon he rode - Aegon II could have gotten the support of the entire West. If Aemond had taken Vhagar to Lannisport and helped the Westermen to drive the Ironborn off their coasts. If Vhagar had fallen on the long ships at the coast, if Aemond had flown to Fair Isle to save the Farmans there, he would have won the love and support of the Westermen. And essentially that could have sealed a Green victory. Because the reservoir of men that can be drawn from the West is much larger than that of all the other regions, aside from the Reach.

But with no help coming, one can actually imagine how Lady Johanna was already making plans to bend the knee to Rhaenyra in exchange for her help to get rid of the Ironborn.

Also, once stories about Tumbleton start to spread through the Realm, who in his right mind really wants to continue to associated with people who do stuff like that?

It is hardly surprising that none of the great 'Green houses' answer Aegon II's pleas for help after his restoration. Even his supposed followers do not actually like him - or rather: the women who essentially take over the rule after their husbands die in battle. The guy fails to make peace, effectively continues the war, and then demands that others save his ass yet again.

And his popularity at his own court is rather obvious, too, when we see that essentially all the men around him conspired to murder him. The only friends this guy had left were the scum of Dragonstone.

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Posted (edited)

@Lord Varys

Re Aemond: I agree. Daeron and Helaena were the only ones with brains out of Viserys and Alicent's children.

Re Lannisters: Doesn't Gyldayn say that once KL fell to Rhaenyra she had to include the Lannisters among her enemies precisely because she unleashed the Ironborn on them and thus there was no love lost between them (not to mention Tyland's torture)?

Re Greens in general: Clearly, there was quite a bit happening off-screen given the hinted-at-but-not-shown defeat of Atranta and the fact that certain houses continued to fly Aegon II's banner even after he was poisoned.

Edited by The Grey Wolf

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