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How should Rhaegar have handled things differently?


nyser1
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send an envoy to Winterfell to explain the situation diplomatically instead of leaving it to ravens or maesters. if the maesters were responsible for changing the messages this may have nipped that manipulation in the bud. maybe even help undercover the maester conspiracy (if there was such a thing). 

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Not take a betrothed woman but a free as a second wife. If Lyanna was the only choice in his mind, then the betrothal with Robert should be broken and then take Lyanna. Then, when Rickard and Brandon went to Kings Landing he should at least sent a raven to give them explanations. And after that when Aerys askes for Ned and Roberts heads, Rhaegar should try to depose Aerys instead of supporting him.

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5 hours ago, YoungGriffonis said:

Honestly after kidnapping and raping Lyanna the only way out for Rhaegar I'd see is suicide. Anything else would not be enough to make up for it.

Considering he didn't do any of that, he has nothing to worry about.

I doubt Lyanna's family would've cared if she went with him willingly because no one in this story except for Ned seemed to have cared for Lyanna's actual feelings, they would've reacted no matter what. So he should've done this after having removed Aerys from power.

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1 hour ago, Firefae said:

Considering he didn't do any of that, he has nothing to worry about.

I doubt Lyanna's family would've cared if she went with him willingly because no one in this story except for Ned seemed to have cared for Lyanna's actual feelings, they would've reacted no matter what. So he should've done this after having removed Aerys from power.

At face they still would have made a show for the slight to honor, if not Lyanna (which at the very least was what happened in the OTL). Presumably they would be able to force Rhaegar into conceding some sort of concessions?

I believe Rhaegar could have brought the Starks back into the fold. Without demanding heads, they can keep the Arryns and the Tullys won’t join without the Arryns and Starks at war.

The Baratheons are not strong enough alone and while there isn’t an immediate bride available, there is the recent precedent of a violated betrothal leading to a rebellion. I doubt Rhaegar would fight Robert in a duel under these circumstances, but perhaps Dayne would take up the fight for him?

Or, Alternatively, he can convince Tywin to marry Cersei off to Robert? 

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3 minutes ago, nyser1 said:

At face they still would have made a show for the slight to honor, if not Lyanna (which at the very least was what happened in the OTL). Presumably they would be able to force Rhaegar into conceding some sort of concessions?

I believe Rhaegar could have brought the Starks back into the fold. Without demanding heads, they can keep the Arryns and the Tullys won’t join without the Arryns and Starks at war.

The Baratheons are not strong enough alone and while there isn’t an immediate bride available, there is the recent precedent of a violated betrothal leading to a rebellion. I doubt Rhaegar would fight Robert in a duel under these circumstances, but perhaps Dayne would take up the fight for him?

Or, Alternatively, he can convince Tywin to marry Cersei off to Robert? 

 

Tywin was aiming for Cersei to be Queen. He was propably waiting for Elia to die so he could still marry Cersei of to Rhaegar. He never would have married Cersei to Robert if he were still a lord.

 

It was Jon Arryn who started the rebellion after being demanded the heads of Robert and Ned, and I can't see Robert starting a rebellion with only the Stormlands. I don't think he's that stupid.

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21 minutes ago, Firefae said:

 

Tywin was aiming for Cersei to be Queen. He was propably waiting for Elia to die so he could still marry Cersei of to Rhaegar. He never would have married Cersei to Robert if he were still a lord.

 

It was Jon Arryn who started the rebellion after being demanded the heads of Robert and Ned, and I can't see Robert starting a rebellion with only the Stormlands. I don't think he's that stupid.

Aiming, but I presume he knew Rhaegar was smarter than that. Plus with a second wife (or one wife, one mistress) and a son at 24 or so, the likelihood of Lannister blood sitting on the throne was unlikely. Add Aegon, presumptive heir, would not be an adult until Cersei would be in her 30s. Perhaps Tywin could be placated with his old office and his son being released, although Robert, Wilas, a young Edmure, or Elbert Arryn would be the best remaining options for Cersei.

Robert could be that foolish though - we know he can be rash and not as a teenager here. Heck, Lyonel’s revolt is a precedent one generation removed. Wouldn’t be surprised if he rode up to the red keep ala Brandon Stark.

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9 minutes ago, nyser1 said:

Aiming, but I presume he knew Rhaegar was smarter than that. Plus with a second wife (or one wife, one mistress) and a son at 24 or so, the likelihood of Lannister blood sitting on the throne was unlikely. Add Aegon, presumptive heir, would not be an adult until Cersei would be in her 30s. Perhaps Tywin could be placated with his old office and his son being released, although Robert, Wilas, a young Edmure, or Elbert Arryn would be the best remaining options for Cersei.

Robert could be that foolish though - we know he can be rash and not as a teenager here. Heck, Lyonel’s revolt is a precedent one generation removed. Wouldn’t be surprised if he rode up to the red keep ala Brandon Stark.

Yes, he is that rash, but it wouldn't lead to a war. If Brandon was executed with a fair trial there propably wouldn't have been a war either.

What about Cersei and Viserys? Hell, he might have aimed for Cersei and Aegon.

Tywin is a classist and would try to marry Cersei to the highest blood possible, the Targaryens.

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4 hours ago, Firefae said:

If Brandon was executed with a fair trial there propably wouldn't have been a war either.

 

There is no way in seven hells that the death of an heir to one of the oldest and most respected houses in Westeros could avoid a war. No trial would ever placate the Starks, considering that Rhaegar, a married man, either abducted or eloped with Lyanna, a girl who's half his age and already betrothed. Lyonel Baratheon wasn't even executed for treason after he declared war on the Iron Throne. That's not just because Egg was merciful, it's also because Lyonel likely had a lot of sympathy across the kingdoms. Executing Lyonel after disrespecting him and his family would have been Maegor or Aegon IV levels of cruelty and vindictiveness. That comes with a price.

Rhaegar futzed around chasing a prophecy (and his erection, let's be honest), and then hid away in some romantic getaway while the realm burned all around him. Neither he nor Lyanna made any visible reaction or even came back to King's Landing when Lyanna's brother and father were murdered in cold blood, in full public view of Aerys' court. Neither of them did anything about Lyanna's other brother and her betrothed fighting for their literal lives, Rhaegar only came back to put down Robert's rebellion, all while talking empty platitudes about "I wish I'd done things differently."

What irks me the most about Rhaegar's behaviour is that GRRM is clearly going to justify it all by making the prophecy into the only thing which saves the world from the Others. 

Edited by James Steller
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22 minutes ago, James Steller said:

There is no way in seven hells that the death of an heir to one of the oldest and most respected houses in Westeros could avoid a war. No trial would ever placate the Starks, considering that Rhaegar, a married man, either abducted or eloped with Lyanna, a girl who's half his age and already betrothed. Lyonel Baratheon wasn't even executed for treason after he declared war on the Iron Throne. That's not just because Egg was merciful, it's also because Lyonel likely had a lot of sympathy across the kingdoms. Executing Lyonel after disrespecting him and his family would have been Maegor or Aegon IV levels of cruelty and vindictiveness. That comes with a price.

Rhaegar futzed around chasing a prophecy (and his erection, let's be honest), and then hid away in some romantic getaway while the realm burned all around him. Neither he nor Lyanna made any visible reaction or even came back to King's Landing when Lyanna's brother and father were murdered in cold blood, in full public view of Aerys' court. Neither of them did anything about Lyanna's other brother and her betrothed fighting for their literal lives, Rhaegar only came back to put down Robert's rebellion, all while talking empty platitudes about "I wish I'd done things differently."

What irks me the most about Rhaegar's behaviour is that GRRM is clearly going to justify it all by making the prophecy into the only thing which saves the world from the Others. 

Maybe not execution. But Brandon did scream that Rhaegar should come out and die. That's a pretty treasonous statement. There definitely would've been a trial, although the outcome might've not been an execution.

We still don't know much about Rhaegar. Also news travels. He and Lyanna might not have known about the trial until it was too late.

Edited by Firefae
typing error
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There is a strong likelihood war would occur but it irks me that Rhaegar is portrayed as a fairly competent successor/alternative to Aerys yet disappears when some diplomacy was possible, does nothing while his new girl’s father and brother are killed, his dad forces Arryn’s hand, and the Targs lose the initial stages of the war. He only returns after the Bells.

 

While some conflict and hostility was unavoidable, I doubt this was the first time the crown gave a big eff yew to vassals. There should have been/could have been ways to mitigate this. Or to break up the alliance (i.e. go after the Tullys, historically as loyal as the Tyrells).

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31 minutes ago, nyser1 said:

There is a strong likelihood war would occur but it irks me that Rhaegar is portrayed as a fairly competent successor/alternative to Aerys yet disappears when some diplomacy was possible, does nothing while his new girl’s father and brother are killed, his dad forces Arryn’s hand, and the Targs lose the initial stages of the war. He only returns after the Bells.

 

While some conflict and hostility was unavoidable, I doubt this was the first time the crown gave a big eff yew to vassals. There should have been/could have been ways to mitigate this. Or to break up the alliance (i.e. go after the Tullys, historically as loyal as the Tyrells).

He also made some strategic bungles; his army was between Robert's and King's Landing at the Battle of the Trident. Since being on the bank meant he had the high ground, why not keep the high ground and force Robert to cross to face him? I did a thread on that.

Also, how did he get a reputation as a great warrior? Sure wars do not make one great, but his skill as a warrior received few tests outside of jousting; the only time where he actually engages in combat is the Battle of the Trident, where, as I say, he makes a critical strategic mistake and gets killed by Robert.

Edited by Angel Eyes
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3 hours ago, Angel Eyes said:

He also made some strategic bungles; his army was between Robert's and King's Landing at the Battle of the Trident. Since being on the bank meant he had the high ground, why not keep the high ground and force Robert to cross to face him? I did a thread on that.

Also, how did he get a reputation as a great warrior? Sure wars do not make one great, but his skill as a warrior received few tests outside of jousting; the only time where he actually engages in combat is the Battle of the Trident, where, as I say, he makes a critical strategic mistake and gets killed by Robert.

I imagine there's an invested interest in building reputations for their ruling families, whether it's been proven or not. Who's going to question whether or not Rhaegar is a good sword fighter? 

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