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Bael's Bastard

If you think Varys saved baby Aegon, explain your timeline

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Posted (edited)

I am interested to see explanations of how you envision Varys saving Aegon within the context of the Sack of King's Landing.

Do you see Varys making a switch before or after Aerys was persuaded by Pycelle to open the gates?

Did Varys just jet to make a switch when he knew Tywin was being let in, or had he already done so?

When/how did he approach Elia about this? Did Rhaegar know, or even set it in motion before he left?

How do you see the switch being made? Get as wordy and lengthy as you want.

I lean towards AeGriff being fake, but I'm not opposed to the possibility of him truly being baby Aegon. Could even work that into why/how Gregor killed the baby and Elia. Maybe Elia mouthed off that her son was saved, and Gregor covered his ass.

Would make it all the more tragic when he dies, especially if he is warmly received by Westeros.

Edited by Bael's Bastard

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Posted (edited)

I'd say if you seriously consider this the switch would have taken place after the news of the Trident arrived and the king refused to allow Elia and the children to accompany Rhaella and Viserys, the new Heir Apparent (and most likely new Prince of Dragonstone) to Dragonstone. It would have been a precautionary measure like Cersei sending Tommen away as it became clear that KL would be besieged by Stannis.

It would have been then that Elia finally realized she and her children were in major trouble because the king believed the Dornish had betrayed Rhaegar and they were no longer members of the royal family but effectively hostages against Dorne (who Aerys may have believed had joined the rebels for some reason). The scenario there actually does included the Mad King threatening to kill Elia and her children when the rebels come knocking because he seems to have believed that Lewyn's men were now with Robert.

If Rhaegar ever talked to Elia or Varys about what might happen if he did not defeat the rebels - and that's certainly possible although I'm not sure how likely - then such a scenario could have come up as a contingency plan before. There could have been plans how to save what was left of House Targaryen if Robert was victorious.

The prospect of a siege was very realistic and there was a good chance that a victorious Robert would kill at least all male Targaryens once he had taken the throne.

All that - in combination with Elia fearing that the Mad King himself could harm her children - can definitely explain why such a switch took place.

On Varys' side his knowledge about the wildfire plot and the effects this might have on all the people in the city may also have played a role - for Elia, too, if she knew about that.

It also helps to explain why it only involved Aegon and not Rhaenys, too - because the danger to her was less (Robert could marry her to his heir), but also because she was an older child known by sight to more than a handful of servants. Aegon was still a babe at the breast, apparently, so only Elia and whatever wetnurses she employed would have intimate contact with the child. If they had wanted to fool not only Robert's rebels later but also the king himself they couldn't switch Rhaenys and Aegon.

With Aerys II viewing Elia and the children as hostages such a switch would be done without the knowledge and permission of the king, meaning Varys and Elia would have to go behind his back, too. The king might not give a babe in a cradle a second look, but he would realize if his granddaughter suddenly looked different.

And if the rebels won then the longer the switch remained a secret - which would likely last longer if only Aegon is replaced with an impostor - the better Aegon's chances are to get away and hide from the rebels for good.

A switch at the last moment sounds less likely, although not impossible. Varys could have contacted Elia before, gotten her agreement, and used the the time between Trident and Sack to find a baby with Valyrian features which could pass for Aegon. Most likely not the pisswater prince - that really sounds like the kind of story little Aegon was told to feel less bad that another child died in his place - but rather some slave child with Valyrian features from the Free Cities provided by Illyrio.

Hell, if you think about it ... the dead Aegon could even have been Illyrio's son by Serra, if there was a switch. And then Illyrio's affection for the boy is born from the fact that he is the child he got in place of Serra's boy ... sort of like Gilly eventually also grows fond of Mance's son.

The switch could then have taken place only during the Sack with Varys being able to enter Maegor's and Elia's aparments in the confusion without anybody notifying the king. Varys is curiously absent during the Sack of King's Landing after that original council meeting. And he is also not with Aerys II when Jaime murders him.

But I find that less likely. I'd expect the switch to have taken place some days, perhaps a week before the Sack, since that could also explain why Elia had already somewhat bonded with the child, being terrified by the way the boy was treated by Gregor later on.

How exactly the switch would have been made I have no clue. What's clear is that it couldn't have been done in complete secrecy since there are no hidden tunnels in Maegor's besides the king's escape tunnel. One could think about a wetnurse in Varys' employ smuggling the impostor child in and Aegon out, about Varys making the switch while Elia went to the godswood or the castle sept with the children, or Varys visited Elia in disguise, dressed as a septon or maester or even as a wetnurse.

However, what would be clear in such a scenario is that Varys' Aegon plan only came into being after Robert had taken the throne and the fake Aegon had died without being revealed as an impostor by the rebels ... and in a manner that could be used to cast doubt whether the real Aegon had been killed after all once it was time for him to claim his grandfather's throne.

Now, the original plan would have likely been to get Aegon to Doran at Sunspear ... and the reason why this wasn't done afterwards would have to do with Varys' opinion how a future king should be raised (not pampered in a castle but in a more humble environment), not with him intending to betray poor dead Elia's trust.

I'm not sure whether to go with a real or a fake Aegon, to be honest. Both scenarios have great potential. They are different, of course, but neither of them would cheapen the story.

However, if Aegon is not Rhaegar's son then I definitely prefer a complete pisswater prince scenario, i.e. a scenario where Aegon isn't some weirdo bastard branch Targaryen descendant through the Blackfyre or any other line but the idea that he is a nobody by birth, and only grows to prominence and power as the mummer's dragon. A king created completely from scratch ... by a guy who also rose from nothing to prominence and power.

Edited by Lord Varys

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Considering that all the relevant witnesses are dead except Varys, any switch scenario would still need to be revealed by Varys in the story. Do I need to tell the problem with this?

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2 hours ago, Mithras said:

Considering that all the relevant witnesses are dead except Varys, any switch scenario would still need to be revealed by Varys in the story. Do I need to tell the problem with this?

I mean if Lemore really is Ashara which is pretty likely, then she could give quite a lot of insight about what happened.

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2 hours ago, Alyn Oakenfist said:

I mean if Lemore really is Ashara which is pretty likely, then she could give quite a lot of insight about what happened.

Lemore is Jeyne Swann, fAegon's mother. Ashara is Jyana Reed.

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1 minute ago, Megorova said:

Lemore is Jeyne Swann, fAegon's mother. Ashara is Jyana Reed.

1. Nice to see you're so certain, I was merely pointing out a possibility. But it's nice to see that you just know. Are you by any chance GRRM's secret forum identity?

2. Based on what?

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6 hours ago, Mithras said:

Considering that all the relevant witnesses are dead except Varys, any switch scenario would still need to be revealed by Varys in the story. Do I need to tell the problem with this?

Did you read the books? There are two characters there who can see pretty much everything that happened in the past.

3 hours ago, Alyn Oakenfist said:

I mean if Lemore really is Ashara which is pretty likely, then she could give quite a lot of insight about what happened.

It is not that likely that Lemore is Ashara, to be honest, but whoever she is ... she could have been a woman who was with Elia when the switch was made. Because if a switch was made then Aegon was most likely leaving with a woman who took care of him. He was still a toddler, after all.

Meaning Lemore could very well have been one of Elia's ladies-in-waiting.

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24 minutes ago, Lord Varys said:

Meaning Lemore could very well have been one of Elia's ladies-in-waiting.

If she was one of her ladies in waiting, given she was at one point pregnant, it kinda narrows it down to just Ashara really.

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Posted (edited)
20 hours ago, Bael's Bastard said:

Do you see Varys making a switch before or after Aerys was persuaded by Pycelle to open the gates?

There's the news of the Battle of the Trident and Rhaegar's death that reaches King's Landing (rider or raven, we don't really know, but since the battle would have been close to Darry, a loyalist castle, then I'm assuming that's where the news came from). 

The news arrives in KL, Aerys sends Rhaella with Viserys to Dragonstone but won't allow Elia and her children to go. The woman isn't sitting on her hands and knees, waiting for the enemy to show up at the gates. She tries to leave and I think the plan was for her to connect with Lyanna and the 3 Kingsguard.

At that point, there's a contingency plan that has to be made for her to be able to escape with her children. I think the Pisswater baby was always marked for death.

I think we have to take the wildfire plot into account. There's no way Varys did not know about it. Aerys is planning on destroying King's Landing, Red Keep included. Jaime said in his POV that Aerys was building himself a funeral pyre. And this may have been the best possible solution for Varys. Wildfire consumes pretty much everything in its path, so bodies would be burned beyond recognition, bones are the only think that would remain, if that.

But Pycelle convinced Aerys to open the gates to Tywin, changing the plan that was initially in place. You already know who I think Septa Lemore is (here's a link), so I won't be going into that. We know there are only master-at-arms left in the Red Keep, with Jaime being the only Kingsguard present. We know Varys's penchant for disguises and how he can move without being recognized. We know he knows how to get in and out of places, his own chamber has a secret passage in it. The rest is really up to him.

Him taking Aegon away the second Tywin and his army got into King's Landing is 100% feasible. 

Again, we see a parallel in the story with Gendry and Barra and Varys's actions to save Gendry from Cersei by sending him off with Yoren. 

His killing of Pycelle and Kevan Lannister mirrors the deaths of Rhaenys and the Pisswater baby.

20 hours ago, Bael's Bastard said:

I lean towards AeGriff being fake, but I'm not opposed to the possibility of him truly being baby Aegon. Could even work that into why/how Gregor killed the baby and Elia. Maybe Elia mouthed off that her son was saved, and Gregor covered his ass.

The explanation for Gregor receiving his knighthood from Rhaegar might be found in whatever transpired in that nursery. We know he is innocent of Rhaenys's murder (I think out of everyone, Rhaenys being away from the nursery is the thing that sticks out like a sore tumb).

Furthermore, Tyrion's trial by combat turned into Gregor's trial instead with Oberyn's accusations. And look at what happened to him. He's now an undead zombie. I know that the word innocent and Gregor should never belong in the same sentence, but maybe there's something to him being innocent from Oberyn's accusations.

Edited by Alexis-something-Rose

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I am very doubtful of this spiriting aegon away as a babe.

Because I am of the mind that before roberts rebellion.Varys was the one whispering in the kings ear about hidden traitors. Rickards death lends to a possibility that Varys told the king that his warden of the north is plotting treason. It might’ve been true or might’ve been the thing Varys needed to weaken the Targaryen legitimacy. If Rickard was plotting treason than I guess Varys just did his duty and informed the king about it. The king obviously took it to another level.

Than you have aerys demanding Ned and roberts head. Demanding neds head makes sense since the mad king probably thought that if the father is a traitor than the 2nd son most be as well. Robert however is confusing because the guy was a hothead lord living his best life. The only treason Robert couldve been plotting was the one on his bed.

So either Varys whispered lies to the king, or maybe aerys’s crazy mind went stark+Robert= traitors.

The other factor could be that grrm invented aegon as a late character. Because he needed Daenerys in Westeros by winds, however he didnt anticipate her ark to be so long and full of other plot points. So he made aegon up so he can have a Targaryen invade Westeros by winds. If this is the case than I do believe aegon is legit since it is what George needs.

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5 hours ago, Alyn Oakenfist said:

1. Nice to see you're so certain, I was merely pointing out a possibility. But it's nice to see that you just know. Are you by any chance GRRM's secret forum identity?

2. Based on what?

1. No.

2. I think that when Rhaegar "kidnapped" Lyanna, he brough her to Starfall not to the Tower of Joy. So Ashara and Lyanna spent months together and became friends. When Lyanna died, and Arthur was killed by the father of Ashara's daughter, Howland and Ashara faked her death and she took a new name, to honor her friend she took a name similar to Lyanna's - Jyanna. Based on how Meera was telling to Bran the story of her father's adventures at Harrenhal, it seems to me that that's when Howland fell in love with Ashara, that's why he noted everyone with whom she danced that evening. Also Howland was with Ned at Dorne, when Lyanna died and Ashara Dayne supposedly died. Thus there is a possibility that Ashara went with Howland, he too was there in Dorne.

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4 minutes ago, Megorova said:

2. I think that when Rhaegar "kidnapped" Lyanna, he brough her to Starfall not to the Tower of Joy. So Ashara and Lyanna spent months together and became friends. When Lyanna died, and Arthur was killed by the father of Ashara's daughter, Howland and Ashara faked her death and she took a new name, to honor her friend she took a name similar to Lyanna's - Jyanna. Based on how Meera was telling to Bran the story of her father's adventures at Harrenhal, it seems to me that that's when Howland fell in love with Ashara, that's why he noted everyone with whom she danced that evening. Also Howland was with Ned at Dorne, when Lyanna died and Ashara Dayne supposedly died. Thus there is a possibility that Ashara went with Howland, he too was there in Dorne.

That's a nice theory and all, but there's almost o proof, and quite a lot of proof Ashara hocked up with either Ned or Brandon

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3 hours ago, Alyn Oakenfist said:

If she was one of her ladies in waiting, given she was at one point pregnant, it kinda narrows it down to just Ashara really.

Not really since we have no clue who served as Elia's lady-in-waiting aside from Ashara. There could have been other women who gave birth in the past.

The defeaters to the Lemore-Ashara idea are basically twofold: No hauting violet eyes for Lemore, and also no great beauty for her. Tyrion may not have met Ashara as a child, but he should have recognized her on the basis of the descriptions he has of her.

But the more important thing is that Jon Connington thinks of Lemore as 'Lady Lemore' ... and he would have to know that she was Ashara if she was Ashara. He would not pretend she was somebody else in thought just as he doesn't pretend he is 'Griff' in his thoughts or that 'Young Griff' isn't Aegon Targaryen.

Also, if Lemore was Ashara she most likely could offer nothing on the question of Aegon's identity because she, most likely, wasn't in KL at the time of the Trident/Sack. After all, Ned seemed to visit her at Starfall only shortly after the Sack.

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1 minute ago, Lord Varys said:

But the more important thing is that Jon Connington thinks of Lemore as 'Lady Lemore' ... and he would have to know that she was Ashara if she was Ashara. He would not pretend she was somebody else in thought just as he doesn't pretend he is 'Griff' in his thoughts or that 'Young Griff' isn't Aegon Targaryen.

Jon doesn't need to know

1 minute ago, Lord Varys said:

The defeaters to the Lemore-Ashara idea are basically twofold: No hauting violet eyes for Lemore, and also no great beauty for her. Tyrion may not have met Ashara as a child, but he should have recognized her on the basis of the descriptions he has of her.

Tyrion at that point is initially drunk all the time and then in a bad case of withdrawal. And he does jack off thinking of her so he does consider her attractive.

2 minutes ago, Lord Varys said:

Also, if Lemore was Ashara she most likely could offer nothing on the question of Aegon's identity because she, most likely, wasn't in KL at the time of the Trident/Sack. After all, Ned seemed to visit her at Starfall only shortly after the Sack.

Alright, this is a good point and kinda of a decisive one at that.

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2 minutes ago, Alyn Oakenfist said:

Jon doesn't need to know

But Jon would know. He was Rhaegar's buddy, he hung out with him, he was at Harrenhal. He saw and knew Ashara Dayne, too.

2 minutes ago, Alyn Oakenfist said:

Tyrion at that point is initially drunk all the time and then in a bad case of withdrawal. And he does jack off thinking of her so he does consider her attractive.

Yes, attractive, but not super attractive the way Ashara Dayne apparently was.

Also, if you think about it - there is no really good reason why Ashara should keep her identity more secret than the gang does Aegon's. She is just an obscure Dornishwoman, not somebody who is in mortal danger if people realized she somehow faked her death.

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35 minutes ago, Lord Varys said:

Not really since we have no clue who served as Elia's lady-in-waiting aside from Ashara. There could have been other women who gave birth in the past.

The defeaters to the Lemore-Ashara idea are basically twofold: No hauting violet eyes for Lemore, and also no great beauty for her. Tyrion may not have met Ashara as a child, but he should have recognized her on the basis of the descriptions he has of her.

But the more important thing is that Jon Connington thinks of Lemore as 'Lady Lemore' ... and he would have to know that she was Ashara if she was Ashara. He would not pretend she was somebody else in thought just as he doesn't pretend he is 'Griff' in his thoughts or that 'Young Griff' isn't Aegon Targaryen.

Also, if Lemore was Ashara she most likely could offer nothing on the question of Aegon's identity because she, most likely, wasn't in KL at the time of the Trident/Sack. After all, Ned seemed to visit her at Starfall only shortly after the Sack.

I don't think Lemore is Ashara either. I think Lemore was present at the time of the switch and her child was the pisswater prince. Another person I thought of that matches Lemore's description is Mellario but I really haven't looked into it

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14 hours ago, Alyn Oakenfist said:

1. Nice to see you're so certain, I was merely pointing out a possibility. But it's nice to see that you just know. Are you by any chance GRRM's secret forum identity?

2. Based on what?

 

Shrug 

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52 minutes ago, Widowmaker 811 said:

Prince Aegon perished during the sack.  

I'm glad you're so certain, care to explain?

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