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Characters / A Song of Ice and Fire - Court of Aegon II

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This is a listing of characters in the court of King Aegon II Targaryen in A Song of Ice and Fire.

For the main House Targaryen entry and overall tropes, see here

For the rival court of Rhaenyra I, see here
From left to right: Dowager Queen Alicent, Aegon II, Queen Helaena and Prince Aemond

Aegon II's supporters, known as The Greens, were the allies of Dowager Queen Alicent Hightower and driven more by the Queen's power, not to mention the wealth of House Hightower, as well as the ancient Andal tradition that a male comes before a female in the succession. They were headquartered in the Red Keep at King’s Landing or alternatively in the equally prosperous Hightower-held city of Oldtown. These assets gave the Greens an air of legitimacy that the Blacks did not. Support for the Greens came mainly from the Reach, Westerlands, and Stormlands, although several river lords supported them as well. The Greens used a sigil depicting a golden dragon on a black field to represent the famed golden dragon Sunfyre, which they possessed during the Dance of Dragons.

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The Royal Family

    Aegon II 

King Aegon Targaryen, the Second of His Name; r. 129-131

Aegon the Elder, Aegon The Usurper

"The time for hiding is done. Let the ravens fly that the realm may know the pretender is dead, and their true king is coming home to reclaim his father’s throne."

Oldest child of Viserys I and Alicent Hightower. Was married to his sister Helaena and had three children by her (twins Jaehaerys and Jaehaera and Maelor). Crowned by Ser Criston Cole at behest of his mother, Queen Alicent Hightower, sparking the civil war known as the Dance of the Dragons. His personal sigil was the Targaryen dragon, gold, on a field of black. He wore the crown of Aegon the Conqueror and carried Blackfyre, the Conqueror's blade. He was lazy, sulky, and gluttonous. He died in 131 AC after a very brief reign, poisoned by his own supporters.

  • Adult Fear: His two sons predeceased him.
  • The Alcoholic: Described as having a particular fondness for wine, though he grew out of that later on. Then he becomes a true alcoholic to partially dull his constant pain upon returning to the throne. He later dies from drinking poisoned wine.
  • All Your Base Are Belong to Us: Finally defeated Rhaenyra by bribing Dragonstone's garrison.
  • A Fate Worse Than Death: Dying at the start of the war would have been more pleasant. Aegon won the war but lost everything in the process: his sons, his wife and his dragon. In his remaining years, his body was decimated by a series of devastating injuries during the war, which caused him no small amount of constant agony and he never really recovered. All that suffering for a pitifully short reign, ending when his remaining supporters assassinated him rather than let Aegon drag the fighting out any longer, after which Rhaenyra's son ends up succeeding him.
  • Bad Boss: He feeds those who displease him to Sunfyre.
  • Big Eater: Aegon is remembered as being a glutton.
  • Blood Knight: Not to the extent of Aemond, but he got impatient with Otto Hightower for reaching out to potential allies rather than fighting (neatly ignoring that he needed allies to fight), and soon fired him for it.
  • Body Horror: His "victory" at "The Battle of Rook's Rest" had him suffer terrible wounds due to dragonfire. Burns covered half his body and one of his arms had even been melted into his armor. It took a year for him to recover. His condition only worsened after his dragon duel with Baela Targaryen. As their dragons fell to the earth, he was forced to leap off Sunfyre's back 20 feet in the air, shattering his legs; said legs never healed properly and left Aegon unable to walk under his own power without the use of a cane.
  • Brother–Sister Incest: Married his sister Helaena.
  • The Corruptible: Not that he was exactly untarnished to begin with, but he proved easily swayed into making things worse by Criston Cole and his mother.
  • Covered in Scars: After his battle in the skies with Rhaenys' dragon his body was covered in scars from the burns, despite emerging victorious.
  • Dragon Rider: He rode Sunfyre. During the Dance, he rode his dragon into battle and against other dragons. One of the few nice things you can say about Aegon II is that at least he wasn't a coward.
  • Foil: Aegon II and his mother Alicent are in some ways like a not insane version of Joffrey and Cersei from ASOIAF - which makes them all the more dangerous, because Sanity Has Advantages. Joffrey and Cersei were outright Stupid Evil, making a lot of mistakes that hindered their plans. In contrast, Alicent is the adept politician that Cersei never was, and even Aegon II - despite many negative character traits - isn't outright "insane" the way Joffrey is, nor is he a coward. Aegon II is a bit of a short-sighted hothead in terms of long-term strategy, but he's at least capable of effective battle tactics in a way Joffrey never was (despite being grievously injured at Rook's Rest, on the whole the trap that Aegon II set there was a success).
    • To Theon Greyjoy. Having a parent, in Theon's case his father, for Aegon his mother, who encourages him to break his oaths. Both were hardly saints, but they quickly become much worse in trying to appease their parents. Also both end up horrendously scarred and are both incapable of sexual activity after their scarring.
  • Generation Xerox: Subverted. He resembled his father in looks, but not personality.
  • Heir Club for Men: One of the main reasons he usurped the throne was because he claimed the right of being the next in a male line of succession; as such, his direct heirs would have Targaryen names unlike Rhaenyra's, whose immediate heirs were Velaryons by virtue of her being a woman; down the line, his successor ended being the second youngest son of Rhaenyra with Daemon Targaryen, Aegon III. This aspect, and the fact that Rhaenyra's reign was disastrous to say the least, led to the subsequent unofficial ban of having a woman sit on the Iron Throne.
  • Ignored Epiphany: Corlys Velaryon and Larys Strong urged Aegon, with the Greens' remaining army destroyed by Lord Kermit Tully, and a northern army under the command of Cregan Stark days away from King's Landing which the Greens had no chance of defeating, to surrender in the hopes Rhaenyra's son Aegon would spare his life and allow him to join the Night's Watch. Aegon was almost persuaded...until his mother chimed in that he should start slicing parts off the boy as a warning to the incoming northerners to back off. Aegon came around to his mother's way of which point Velaryon and Strong, fully aware the war was a lost cause at this point, washed their hands of Aegon's insanity and arranged his assassination before the end of the day.
  • I Will Punish Your Friend for Your Failure: Aegon threatened Alyn Velaryon with this, insinuating that he would have Alyn's cousin Baela Targaryen executed if Alyn failed to stop the Braavosi fleet transporting forces loyal to Rhaenyra from the Vale to assault King's Landing. Fortunately, Alyn's father (and Baela's grandfather) Corlys Velaryon orchestrated Aegon's assassination before the king could make good on his threat.
  • Kick the Dog:
    • When Aemond killed Lucerys Velaryon, Alicent and Otto Hightower — according to Septon Eustace — were horrified, since it meant there'd be no chance now of settling things peacefully and it just plain made the Greens look bad. Aegon, by contrast, congratulated Aemond and held a feast for him.
    • When he took Dragonstone, he had Rhaenyra's Maester killed, but made sure to leave just enough of him for her to recognize before he killed her.
    • Speaking of which, the means by which he killed Rhaenyra alone are horrific enough, but he made a point of doing so in front of her son, Aegon, who was still a kid at the time.
  • Kill It with Fire: Narrowly avoided this fate. During "The Battle of Rook's Rest" he was nearly burnt to death by Princess Rhaenys' dragon, Meleys. Though he survived, it took him a year to recover from his incredibly severe burns. This was the fate of Rhaenys, the Queen Who Never Was, and his sister Rhaenyra, at the hands of his dragon Sunfyre. Rhaenyra was devoured by the dragon afterwards.
  • King Incognito: He escaped King's Landing and snuck into Dragonstone by pretending to be a dragonseed smallfolk.
  • The Loins Sleep Tonight: After breaking his legs from a battle against Baela Targaryen's younger dragon, Mushroom claims that Aegon suffered impotence. He would order his guards to have their way with a woman while he watched from a silk screen before confessing his sin to Septon Eustace, who does not repeat these claims.
  • Nice Job Fixing It, Villain!: His threatening Baela Targaryen with execution was all the impetus Corlys Velaryon, Baela's grandfather, needed to agree to arranging Aegon's assassination.
  • Oh, Crap!: This was apparently Aegon's reaction to learning the Riverlands had almost completely come out in support of Rhaenyra and the few supporters he had there had been crushed. It was a particularly galling blow to Aegon because it proved Rhaenyra had far more support for her claim than his sycophants had assured him.
  • Outliving One's Offspring: His two sons perished in the course of the war. Jaehaerys was assassinated in retaliation for Lucerys's murder, Maelor was killed by a mob at Bitterbridge; though his daughter Jaehaera lived to marry Aegon III, she did not last long thereafter after she either killed herself or was murdered.
  • Papa Wolf: It's said he didn't really want to be King at first, he only agreed when he was told that if he didn't, Rhaenyra would kill his family. However, bear in mind this was written by Septon Eustace who was a fervent Aegon supporter and desperate to make him look good.
  • Perpetual Frowner: Often bore a sullen look on his face. After the war with his half-sister began, and the losses he suffered because of it, it's no wonder he looked so miserable.
  • Pet the Dog
    • Aegon granted the pretender Trystane Truefyre's last request of being knighted before executing him.
    • He did not allow Baela Targaryen to be killed after a fierce battle over Dragonstone just out of the sheer braveness of her act. They both lived covered in burns for the rest of their lives, though Baela lived longer. Though he did consider having her executed several times, he just never got around to it.
    • He also spared Aegon the Younger when he was suggested of having him killed. He settled for keeping him captive in Dragonstone. And then Alicent suggested slicing him to pieces...
    • He loved his dragon Sunfyre, and was genuinely heartbroken when the beast finally died of its injuries.
  • He also loved his younger brothers, Aemond and Daeron. After they were killed in the fighting, Aegon commanded that two colossal statues of them be built as part of his plans to rebuild the Dragonpit.
  • Pre-Mortem One-Liner
    Rhaenyra: It would seem we are your prisoners ... but do not think that you will hold us long. My leal lords will find me.
    Aegon II: If they search the seven hells, mayhaps.
  • Pyrrhic Victory: He outlived his opponent Rhaenyra, but he lost both of his sons, his wife and his dragon Sunfyre, was critically injured during the Battle of Rook's Rest, and later died. Aegon later suffered badly damaged legs at Dragonstone and never really recovered. Living in pain for the rest of his days, his reign would only last for about 6 months, with his own supporters eventually poisoning him when it became obvious that they couldn't win the continuing civil war. And, adding insult to injury, the crown passed to her child, Aegon III, when he died without (male) issue. Rhaenyra's claim was vindicated in the long run.
    • On the longer run, whoever was left after all that mess was executed during Cregan Stark's Hour Of The Wolf, which is the term used to refer to his period of six days as Hand of the King Aegon III to bring Aegon II's murderers to justice, which turned out to be the very same guys who put him in the throne.
  • Really Gets Around: Had loads of bastards.
  • Refusal of the Call: According to Eustace, at first he didn't even want to be king, until Criston Cole convinced him that Rhaenyra would kill him and his children to assert her right to the throne.
  • Stout Strength: He had his father's plump build, but was still a warrior.
  • Straight for the Commander: Killing Rhaenyra did not end the war. The Blacks kept fighting to put her son on the Iron Throne.
  • Ungrateful Bastard: His response to Grand Maester Orwyle offering to go to Dragonstone and negotiate a peace settlement with Rhaenyra was to accuse the Grand Maester of treason and threaten to throw him in the Black Cells. Aegon only relented when his mother, wife and grandfather spoke in favor of Orwyle's proposal.
    • He also fired his grandfather, Otto Hightower, as Hand of the King because he felt Otto was being too cautious and cowardly. In truth, Otto was desperately trying to shore up the meager support Aegon had and persuade other noble Houses still on the fence to back him.
  • Unreliable Narrator: According to Word of God, there were problems with the editor when The Princess and the Queen was published, resulting in certain lines being cut for space... particularly what were actually vital framing phrases that they should not have cut. In the narrative style of the novella, it is presented as a history text which at times quotes rival sources, though the author is careful to point out who said this so the reader can judge if they were biased, i.e. Septon Eustace was a major Aegon II supporter, so any time that his historical account is quoted, you're supposed to view it warily. George R.R. Martin has confirmed via blog postings that pretty much anything nice you could say about Aegon II was just propaganda being quoted out of context - specifically, that the whole thing about him not even wanting to be king at first was propaganda from Septon Eustace's book (but the editor cut out the line saying "Septon Eustace said this and I'm not sure if he was lying"). All other accounts such as from The World of Ice and Fire describe Aegon II as a power-hungry "grasper" eager to usurp the throne.
  • The Usurper: To Rhaenyra's loyalists, the "Blacks".
  • Won the War, Lost the Peace: After capturing and executing Rhaenyra and taking her last son as a hostage, Aegon had effectively won the Dance of Dragons. All he had to do was be reasonable, offer pardons to convince Rhaenyra's loyalists to stand down and acknowledge her son Aegon as his (albeit temporary) heir to allow a modicum of peace to return. Instead, Aegon, influenced by his mother and her sycophants, started meting out brutal reprisals on Black lords closest to King's Landing, and when word of that got out, Rhaenyra's loyalists in the North, Vale and Riverlands chose to keep fighting rather than lay down their arms and suffer the same. Within the space of a week, the last of Aegon's armies had been annihilated, and he had no forces left to defend King's Landing from three enemy armies about to lay siege to the capital. When he made it plain he'd rather mutilate his nephew as leverage against his enemies rather than abdicate to prevent another massacre, a good number of his courtiers decided enough was enough, assassinated Aegon and the rest of his loyalists at court, then negotiated a surrender before their enemies could assault King's Landing, with Aegon going down in history vilified as a grasping usurper.
  • Would Harm A Child: Played with. The war snowballs considerably after Aemond kills Lucerys Velaryon. Both Rhaenyra and Daemon Targaryen hold Aegon responsible, though he had nothing to do with it. Daemon then orders one of Aegon's children to be killed; likewise, Rhaenyra is blamed even when she didn't give the order. And also at Rhaenyra's death, he refused to have the future Aegon III killed despite the suggestion. It was the fact he listened to his mother's suggestion to start slicing Aegon the Younger into pieces as a threat that ultimately prompted Larys Strong and Lord Velaryon to kill him.
  • Would Hit a Girl: After his beloved dragon Sunfyre died of the injuries it sustained in his battle with Baela Targaryen, Aegon spitefully ordered her beheaded for it, only relenting when his advisers pointed out Baela would be a useful hostage to the loyalty of her Velaryon in-laws. Aegon again threatened her grandfather Corlys Velaryon that if his son Alyn failed to stop a Braavosi fleet transporting an army from the Vale loyal to Rhaenyra to assault King's Landing, Baela would lose her head for it. Unfortunately for Aegon, that threat just goaded Corlys into arranging the king's assassination before the end of the day.
  • Written by the Winners: Aegon decreed Rhaenyra was never a true queen, only a princess. This decree still stands, even while Aegon goes down in history as a usurper himself.
  • 0% Approval Rating: Aegon was not a popular king even before he seized the crown; Rhaenyra's takeover of King's Landing was initially successful because he was so unpopular with the people. Getting rid of Rhaenyra didn't help Aegon's cause because by the time he did, half the realm wanted him dead and were prepared to keep fighting to make it a reality.

    Queen Helaena Targaryen 

Queen Helaena Targaryen

Second child and only daughter of Viserys I and Alicent Hightower. Aegon II's wife and mother of his three children (twins Jaehaerys and Jaehaera and Maelor). She committed suicide in 130 AC after spending months in a deep depression following her son's murder.

  • 100% Adoration Rating: The smallfolk loved Helaena, even after her depression.
  • Absurdly Youthful Mother: Gave birth to Jaehaerys and Jaehaera when she was only 14.
  • Adult Fear: She watched her eldest son beheaded, while the assassins also threatened to rape her daughter. Her younger son was later torn to pieces by a mob, though it's unclear if she ever learned about this.
  • Awful Wedded Life: It's hinted her marriage to Aegon wasn't very happy, especially after the Blood and Cheese incident; Helaena refused to share a bed with him and didn't go see him when he was bedridden from battle wounds. Considering Aegon wasn't the most pleasant man and frequently cheated on her, it wouldn't be surprising their marriage was unhappy.
  • Beauty Equals Goodness: Played with. Helaena was said to be not as strikingly beautiful as most Targaryens, but still a pretty girl, and she was easily one of the nicest members of her family.
  • Big Beautiful Woman: She was described as plumper than most Targaryens. Well, she did have three children.
  • Broken Bird: After her elder son was killed. Plus, if Mushroom is to be believed, Rhaenyra forced her into prostitution as revenge for Alicent constantly claiming her first three sons were bastards.
  • Brother–Sister Incest: She was married to her brother Aegon II.
  • Deadpan Snarker: One of the few things she's recorded as saying is when asked where her husband was when Viserys I died was "not in bed", even telling the men looking they could check under the bed sheets if they liked.
  • Despair Event Horizon: After her eldest son Jaehaerys was beheaded in front of her, she fell into madness and never recovered, eventually committing suicide at the age of twenty-one.
  • Distressed Damsel: She was cornered in her mother's bedroom by two assassins, who killed her guards and forced her to choose one of her sons to die. She was later taken captive by her older half-sister Rhaenyra after King's Landing fell to the Blacks. According to Mushroom, she was forced into prostitution by a vengeful Rhaenyra, though no other sources cite this happening.
  • Dragon Rider: She rode Dreamfyre. She never rode the dragon into battle though; she wasn't a warrior and by the time the fighting really started, she was considered too mentally unstable to be a reliable asset in battle.
  • Forced to Watch: She was forced to watch her son being murdered, which caused her to fall into a deep depression.
  • Impaled with Extreme Prejudice: By spikes at the bottom of the moat of Maegor's Holdfast.
  • Never Suicide: After her suicide, the rumor is that she was murdered by Luthor Largent, Commander of the City Watch, on the orders of Rhaenyra Targaryen.
  • Nice Girl: She was described as being a "pleasant and happy" girl, who loved her children and was adored by the smallfolk. Unfortunately, she's emotionally broken by the horrific events she went through in the Dance of Dragons.
  • The Ophelia: Watching her son Jaehaerys die right in front of her eyes - after she had reluctantly picked his brother Maelor as the one she thought most expendable - drives her mad with grief, to the point that she eventually throws herself off the roof of Maegor's Holdfast. But then, see Never Suicide above.
  • Outliving One's Offspring: Jaehaerys was killed in front of her as mentioned above. Later, Maelor was torn apart by the mob at Bitterbridge after being spirited away from the Red Keep (though it's possible Helaena never learned about this).
  • Outnumbered Sibling: She was Alicent's only daughter and had three brothers; her eldest brother Aegon was also her husband.
  • Parental Favoritism: A downplayed and horrific instance of this. Helaena loved all her children, but she reluctantly chose Maelor when Blood and Cheese demanded one of her sons be killed (if not they'd kill all her children). Helaena chose Maelor because she thought he was too young to understand what was happening. Blood and Cheese killed Jaehaerys instead and made a point of telling Maelor his mother "wanted him dead". Helaena sank into a deep depression over this and couldn't bring herself to look at Maelor out of guilt.
  • Please Spare Him, My Liege!: She offered to die herself instead of any of her children.
  • Proper Lady: One of the reasons why she was beloved.
  • "Rashomon"-Style: There are differing accounts as to how Helaena died: one account accuses Luthor Largent of throwing her to her death on Rhaenyra's orders, but in-universe historians dispute this, given Largent had the alibi of eating dinner with his fellow gold cloaks at the time of Helaena's death and Rhaenyra had no reason to want Helaena dead, dismissing the claims of murder as slander spread by Larys Strong. The other accounts that assert Helaena committed suicide differ on her motive: some say it was discovering she was pregnant after months of being used as a Sex Slave alongside her mother in a King's Landing brother after Alicent provoked Rhaenyra, while others says Helaena killed herself after Mysaria told Helaena how her infant son Maelor had died at Bitterbridge, just to be cruel.
  • Roaring Rampage of Revenge: Not by her per say, but by her dragon Dreamfyre. She got loose and went berserk in the capitol after her rider committed suicide. In a way, Dreamfyre exacted revenge on everyone who was responsible for Helaena's death.
  • Sadistic Choice: Daemon's assassins "Cheese" and "Blood" forced her to choose which of her children must die. They then killed the one she didn't choose. And if she refused to choose, they would kill all three children and rape her daughter.
  • Sanity Slippage: She falls into depression after witnessing the death of her son Jaehaerys, refusing to eat, bathe or leave her chambers. It's unclear if she was really "insane", or just deeply depressed (which wouldn't be surprising given what had happened).
  • Sex Slave: According to Mushroom (who is not exactly the most reliable source), she was prostituted to the people of King's Landing, alongside her mother after Alicent called Rhaenyra's Velaryon sons bastards to her face once too often, to be left there until she and Alicent were pregnant with bastards of their own. Mushroom also claims discovering she was pregnant from this was the cause of her suicide.
  • Sleeping Single: After the incident that caused her breakdown, she slept apart from Aegon.
  • Take Me Instead: Tried doing this with Cheese and Blood, but they immediately shot it down.
  • Teen Pregnancy: She was only 14 when she gave birth to Jaehaerys and Jaehaera, and 18 when she gave birth to Maelor.
  • Token Good Teammate: She doesn't seem to share any of her mother, brother-husband, and other brothers' jerkassery and has no Kick the Dog moment.
  • Too Good for This Sinful Earth: Out of all Alicent's children, she was the most kind, gentle and innocent, never willfully doing any harm to anyone. She ended up as collateral damage in the Greens and Blacks' feud, that saw two of her children dead and her being emotionally and psychologically broken, eventually driving her to take her own life (unless she was actually murdered).
  • Too Unhappy to Be Hungry: Following the Blood and Cheese incident, Helaena would often refuse food in the midst of her grief.

    Dowager Queen Alicent Hightower 

Dowager Queen Alicent Hightower

Second and last spouse of King Viserys I and mother of Aegon II, Queen Helaena and princes Aemond and Daeron Targaryen. Daughter of the long-time Hand of the King Ser Otto Hightower.

  • Ain't Too Proud to Beg: When she heard Rhaenyra had given orders for her sons to be killed on sight after the fall of King's Landing, Alicent went on her knees before the Iron Throne to beg for mercy. Rhaenyra unsurprisingly ignored her pleading, retorting that she'd been prepared to give Alicent's children places of honor at court when her father died, but she was no longer inclined to be merciful when Aegon and his brothers had stolen her throne and killed two of her children.
  • All for Nothing: At the end of the Dance of the Dragons, her father, younger sons, daughter, and grandsons were all dead, and her son ruled for less than a year and accomplished zilch before being unceremoniously poisoned by his own supporters, going down in history as a power-hungry, grasping usurper. Her last surviving grandchild would die young and childless, with Rhaenyra’s sons continuing the Targaryen bloodline. Alicent herself would die a broken woman shortly after, in grief and bitter regret.
  • Awful Wedded Life: If she did actually kill Viserys, it would say a lot about their marriage that she was willing to do so. Regardless, it's telling that in her final years, as she started talking about all the dead people she wanted to talk to again, her husband never got mentioned once.
  • Be Careful What You Wish For: She desperately wanted her son and daughter to become king and queen. She got her wish, even crowning Helaena herself. And then she got to see her family killed off one by one in the ensuing civil war, down to her last (legitimate) grandchild.
  • Bullying a Dragon: She continues mouthing off about Rhaenyra's kids to her face when held captive, even when Rhaenyra makes it plain to Alicent the only reason she's still alive is because Viserys loved her.
  • The Caretaker: For the elderly and sickly king, Jaehaerys I, who even confused her for one of his daughters and died peacefully while she was reading to him.
  • Cruel Mercy: She is spared from execution twice, but has to see her children, grandchildren and supporters die one after the other, and eventually is imprisoned for life and forgotten by everyone, including her last living grandchild, who is utterly terrified of her.
  • Deconstructed Character Archetype: Of Mother Makes You King. Everything Alicent did, she did so her son Aegon II could be king and her family could be in control of the Iron Throne. While she gave her children every possible social and political advantage growing up, she never bothered to discipline them in any way or teach them how to lead effectively, with the result that Aegon II and Aemond grew into, respectively, a lazy, unlikable, gluttonous womanizer and an Axe-Crazy Royal Brat who murdered his cousin the first chance he got, destroying any chance of a peace treaty between the two warring factions and leading the outraged Blacks to declare "This Means War!" During the Dance of the Dragons, her father, brothers, daughter, two other sons, and grandsons were all killed, but Aegon II survived, fed Rhaenyra to his dragon, and claimed the Iron Throne...and he proceeded to accomplish absolutely nothing and would rule for less than a year before he was fatally poisoned by his own supporters (after he decided to go along with her suggestion to kill the young Aegon III, rather than stand down in the face of an enemy army he had no hope of defeating), making the death of every single Hightower for naught. Alicent did everything in her power to make her son a king, but it meant nothing in the end because she didn't raise him to be a man worthy of a crown.
  • Doting Parent: Whatever her other flaws, she did love her children, enough to wage a war against her stepdaughter Rhaenyra in an effort to give them the royal crown. Unfortunately, she also allowed them to grow up entitled and spoiled, as evidenced by the dispositions of Aegon II, a womanizing Jerkass, and Aemond, a violent Royal Brat and Blood Knight. Helaena and Daeron turned out all right, through.
  • Dropped A Bridge On Her: She stops being mentioned after Rhaenyra's death, other than being mentioned among the casualties of the Winter Fever during Aegon III's reign.
  • Even Evil Has Standards: Alicent was said to have been horrified by Aemond's cold blooded murder of the defenceless Lucerys Velaryon, knowing that act had destroyed any chance of negotiating a peace with Rhaenyra.
  • Foil: To Cersei Lannister. They both crowned their sons as kings, bypassing the chain of succession once their husbands died, angering an awful lot of people; they are both in dispute of the title of Queen with a younger contender and they staunchly want to avoid ever becoming dowagers or regents; they both are the daughters of the on/off and extremely influential Hands of the King, who are at the time the most powerful men in Westeros (Otto Hightower and Tywin Lannister); they are the mothers of two of the most caustic people that ever sat in the Iron Throne (Prince Regent Aemond Targaryen and King Joffrey I Baratheon) and another son of each also sat in the throne (Kings Aegon II and Tommen I); Cersei belongs to the most powerful lordly house in Westeros while Alicent belongs to the most powerful vassal house in Westeros, both houses that opportunistically jumped the gun; they are made prisoners and they both survive the killing of their Throne-sitting sons; they both are considered still very lean and beautiful even after giving birth to their children. Unlike Cersei, however, Alicent is not a narcissistic idiot, but an adept politician - which makes her much more effective and dangerous.
  • Green and Mean: She wore a green gown to the tournament of her fifth wedding anniversary while her stepdaughter Rhaenyra wore black, leading their respective factions to be called the Greens and the Blacks. She was also a ruthless, power-hungry woman who tried to usurp the crown from her stepdaughter against her late husband's wishes and caused a massive civil war that devastated Westeros.
  • Green-Eyed Monster: She and her children resented Rhaenyra for being made Viserys' direct heir despite being a woman, and eventually waged war against her to take the crown for themselves. Also literally, considering that they were called the Greens.
  • Historical Hero Upgrade: Thanks to Written by the Winners tale, her flaws are not exaggerated as are Rhaenyra's, and the most licentious rumors about her are instantly dismissed instead of being explored in-depth as her rival's.
  • Irony: All of her scheming and plotting was so her own family could control the Iron Throne. The war she caused resulted in the deaths of every last one of her children and grandchildren. When her last grandchild Queen Jaehaera died without issue, the line of the Hightower-Targaryens was extinguished, with Rhaenyra's descendants being the ones to continue the Targaryen line.
  • Jerkass: Potential husband-murdering, actual power-hunger and plotting aside, she just generally seems to have been a pretty thorough piece of work, constantly making nasty digs at Rhaenyra and her kids at every opportunity.
  • Jerkass Has a Point: Alicent had a point when she dismissed Corlys Velaryon and Larys Strong urging Aegon to abdicate in the hope Aegon III would let him take the black in exchange, noting the boy was hardly likely to be merciful to the man who'd fed his mother to a dragon.
  • Know When to Fold 'Em: She surrendered King's Landing to Rhaenyra after the Blacks captured the capital (though only after trying to convince Rhaenyra to hold a Great Council to decide the succession. Rhaenyra, unsurprisingly, threw the proposal back in Alicent's face and gave her stepmother a choice: yield or die. Alicent wisely chose the former).
  • Lady Macbeth: Oh, yes...
    • She and Ser Criston Cole have to convince Aegon to go against his half-sister's claim to the throne, convincing him that if she did take it, Rhaenyra would put them all to death to secure the throne for herself and her "bastard" children.
    • Fire and Blood has Gyldayn mention a rumor, which he dismisses, that she was the cause of Viserys' sudden death.
  • Laser-Guided Karma: If Mushroom is to believed, after calling Rhaenyra's Velaryon sons bastards one too many times, Alicent was locked in a brothel, alongside her daughter Helaena, where any man willing to spend a golden dragon could use her as they wanted. Apparently, the idea behind this punishment was that if Alicent would speak so freely of bastards, she'd be left there until she was pregnant with one of her own.
  • The Mistress: It was claimed the rift between her father and Daemon Targaryen arose when Ser Otto found out Daemon had deflowered Alicent, and others whispered she'd been Viserys's mistress even when he'd been married to his first wife. Mushroom went so far as to claim she'd been this for King Jaehaerys as well as his caretaker (though that seems unlikely, given Jaehaerys was bedridden and senile by that point).
  • Moral Myopia: The murder of Maelor by a panicked mob set off by a greedy innkeeper and stableboy is horrific. The death of Rhaenyra's sons, done deliberately by troops on her son's side? They're just bastards, quit your whining Rhaeny.
  • Mother Makes You King: She was the real mind behind Aegon's crowning, to the point of hiding her husband's death from the public eye for a while to get the time of plotting her son's coup.
  • My Nayme Is: Alicent, not Alison.
  • Nice Job Fixing It, Villain!:
    • When Aegon II is advised to surrender after the Battle of the Kingsroad, she suggests he start sending pieces of his nephew Aegon to the deceased Rhaenyra's supporters as a warning. He agrees with this idea, but is promptly poisoned by one of his court who wants the war to end already.
    • Even before that, after Aegon returned to King's Landing following Rhaenyra's death, she urged Aegon to harshly punish Rhaenyra's supporters, against the advice of Corlys Velaryon, who argued in favor of offering pardons to convince the Blacks to stand down. Aegon took his mother's advice...and when word of the reprisals meted out on Rhaenyra's Crownland supporters got out, her loyalists in the North, Vale and Riverlands decided they'd rather keep fighting than surrender and suffer the same, promptly crushing the Greens' last standing army and setting into motion the chain of events leading to Aegon II's death.
  • Oh, Crap!: Her reaction to hearing about what Aemond did to Lucerys, at least according to Eustace.
  • Outliving One's Offspring: Aemond and Daeron were both killed during the war, Helaena committed suicide, and Aegon was assassinated by his own courtiers at the end of the Dance. Her grandsons Jaehaerys and Maelor also died during the Dance, and her last (legitimate) grandchild Queen Jaehaera (who was by all accounts terrified of Alicent) died childless barely two years later - after which the broken Alicent died during the Winter Fever epidemic.
  • Pet the Dog: Alicent repeatedly defended her father's record as Hand of the King to Aegon when her son was rapidly losing patience with his grandfather.
  • Pyrrhic Victory: Sure, her rival is dead and Aegon has the throne at the end of the Dance of the Dragons, but her other three children, two of her grandchildren, and a few other family members all died during the war, and Aegon's rule lasts less than a year before he dies, poisoned by his own supporters. The Iron Throne then passes onto Rhaenyra's oldest surviving son. All of Alicent's plotting and the devastation she caused ultimately amounted to nothing but tragedy for all involved, and began the decline of Targaryen power due to the loss of most of the dragons during the war.
    • She lived to see her son Aegon II killed by his own court and themselves either executed by Cregan Stark or sent to the Wall, only to die herself two years later during the Winter Fever. The last two to three years of her life she spent behind bars during Aegon III's Council of Regents' reign.
  • The Rival: To Rhaenyra, to the point that the two sides in the Dance of the Dragons, the Greens and the Blacks, were named after the color of the gowns they wore at the feast of the tournament that celebrated Alicent and Viserys' fifth anniversary. Several historians In-Universe consider the Dance of the Dragons to be a conflict between Alicent and Rhaenyra rather than Aegon and Rhaenyra.
  • The Rashomon: It's not clear if the rumors about her giving her maidenhead to Prince Daemon or sleeping with the King while he was still married are only rumors, but given her Historical Hero Upgrade treatment, at least some doubt is legitimate.
  • Sanity Slippage: In the last years of her life, she started to unravel, talking to herself and/or reminiscing about her children and grandfather in-law. It's quite the tearjerker to realize that she genuinely loved most of those she helped ruin.
    Alicent Hightower: I want to see my sons again, and Helaena, my sweet girl, oh ... and King Jaehaerys. I will read to him, as I did when I was little. He used to say I had a lovely voice.
  • Screw the Rules, I Have Connections!: Despite Viserys wanting Rhaenyra to succeed him and Targaryen tradition allowing for that to happen, Alicent decided she will make her son Aegon king, using her family's wealth and power to gather allies and claim the Iron Throne.
  • Self-Serving Memory: After Rhaenyra dies, she sneers that the Queen had scorned any overture of peace Alicent had made. The only overture she made was "let us keep the crown, we'll split Westeros in two, oh and stop whining about your kids already."
  • Silk Hiding Steel: Who could ever predicted that the sweet young caretaker lady with the gentle bedside manner would turn out to be a fully fledged Lady Macbeth?
  • Silver Vixen: She is reported to have stayed slender and attractive even after giving birth to four children and becoming a grandmother, something her younger but Formerly Fit stepdaughter seemed to resent.
  • Social Climber: Her family, the Hightowers, were famous for this. She married King Viserys and had four legitimate children with him, then decided to make her eldest son king after his death, going against Viserys' wish that his eldest daughter Rhaenyra should be queen.
  • This Is My Side: "Suggested" to Rhaenyra, after being taken captive, that if she wanted to be queen so much, they divide Westeros in halfnote . Somehow, Rhaenyra wasn't taken with this one, and refused.
  • Ungrateful Bastard: Aegon III spares her life. Amount of gratitude Alicent shows? 0.000%. His regents keep her away from court because they figure she'd swear curses at him, or just flat-out try to murder him, a fear that proves accurate when she tells Jaehaera, who is eight at the time, to slice his throat.
  • Unwitting Instigator of Doom: Well, she actually did know that she could face a civil war, but the consequences of her actions were far larger than she could ever imagine, even extending for centuries and leading to the dragons' extinction in Westeros, the cruel deaths of all her children and grandchildren and the slow decline of House Targaryen.
  • Was It Really Worth It?: Alicent and the Greens won the war to put Aegon II on the throne, but in the process, her father, brothers, daughter, two other sons, and grandsons were lost. They would enjoy their "victory" for less than half a year before the Blacks closed in on King's Landing and Aegon was poisoned by his own supporters.
  • We Used to Be Friends: At the time of her marriage to King Viserys she and his daughter got along well, until she gave birth to a son of her own and started to resent Rhaenyra for still being the heir despite being female. Also, as Rhaenyra grew up, there was less and less space for two primadonnas at court.
  • Wicked Stepmother: Frankly, no matter how much positive spin any maester tries to apply, it's rather hard to see her as not being this trope. She ticks all the boxes. And plays it far straighter than Cersei does. She resented her stepdaughter for being named Viserys's heir over her own sons, constantly referred to Rhaenyra as a whore and her Velaryon sons as bastards, and inarguably plotted to supplant Rhaenyra with Aegon the moment Viserys croaked.
  • Would Hurt a Child:
    • When Aemond got his eye poked out, Alicent's immediate response was to demand the kid responsible get his eye taken out in revenge.
    • Just as Aegon II was starting to think about folding it, in the face of oncoming and angry Rhaenyra loyalists, on the recommendation that Prince Aegon would likely just send him to The Wall, it's Alicent who pipes up with her suggestion that he instead start slicing the kid to pieces as a warning.
    • Her urging her granddaughter Jaehaera slit her husband, Aegon III's throat in his sleep traumatized the girl so badly that Aegon's regents forbade Alicent from ever interacting with Jaehaera again.
  • You Will Be Spared:
    • When Rhaenyra captures King's Landing, she spares Alicent due to the love Viserys had for her. Nevertheless, she is still confined to a tower and bound in golden fetters.
    • Aegon III's regents didn't execute her after the Dance (some out of sympathy for her losses, others out of fear killing her would reignite the conflict), but they kept her effectively under house arrest in the Red Keep for the rest of her life.

    Prince Jaehaerys Targaryen 

Prince Jaehaerys Targaryen

The eldest child of Aegon II and Helaena, and twin to Jaehaera. Six years old during the Dance of the Dragons. He was murdered by "Blood" in 129 AC in retaliation for the death of his cousin Lucerys.

  • Extra Digits: He had six fingers on his left hand and six toes on each foot.
  • Foil: To Rhaenyra's three eldest sons by her first marriage, all of whom lacked the classic Targaryen features of pale blonde/white hair; instead their brown hair and pug noses led people to whisper that they were bastards born of an affair with Harwin Strong (though they could plausibly have just looked like one of their Arryn or Baratheon great-grandparents). Aegon II's supporters derided that her children couldn't be real Targaryens, while he kept the bloodline pure by marrying his own sister in Valyrian fashion (and even if Laenor Velaryon was their father, he was just a cousin). The irony was that Aegon II's children were undoubtedly real Targaryens, the product of an incestuous brother-sister much so that it gave them major birth defects. Rhaenyra's three older sons may have had brown hair but they didn't have extra fingers. The contrast ends there, though: otherwise Jaehaerys was a healthy, sweet, intellectually normal child. His sister Jaehaera, on the other hand, had some sort of congenital autism-like condition as a result of all the inbreeding.
  • Named After Somebody Famous: After his great-great grandfather Jaehaerys the Conciliator.
  • Off with His Head!: Beheaded by Daemon's agent "Blood", a former goldcloak.
  • Revenge by Proxy: Falls victim to this after the death of his cousin, Prince Lucerys.
  • Sacrificial Lamb: The first major Green casualty. After him, It's Personal.

    Princess Jaehaera Targaryen 

Princess Jaehaera Targaryen

The second child and only daughter of Aegon II and Helaena, and twin sister to Jaehaerys. Six years old during the Dance of the Dragons. She married her cousin Aegon III after her father's death in 131 AC but (possibly) committed suicide only two years later.

See the Court of Aegon III page.

    Prince Maelor Targaryen 

Prince Maelor Targaryen

Third child and younger son of Aegon II and Helaena. Two years old during the Dance of the Dragons. He was torn apart by a mob when on the way to Oldtown under the care of Ser Rickard Thorne.

  • Bus Crash: He was overtaken at Bitterbridge and torn apart by a mob.
  • Cruel and Unusual Death: Torn to pieces by a mob at Bitterbridge.
  • Doomed by Canon: There's no mention of his fate in The Princess and the Queen but the novels state that Aegon II died childless (without male issue, anyway) and was succeeded by his nephew Aegon the Younger, so Maelor didn't survive the Dance of the Dragons.
    • His fate was eventually revealed in The World of Ice and Fire as mentioned below.
  • Put on a Bus: In-universe, Lord Larys Strong smuggles him from the Red Keep and then Ser Rickard Thorne of the Kingsguard is charged with taking him to Lord Hightower.
  • "Rashomon"-Style: That he died is indisputable, but there's a few different tales about just who and how. Mushroom claims he got his neck accidentally snapped by a mentally handicapped woman who'd been trying to defend him. Everyone else says he was torn apart by a mob.

    Prince Aemond Targaryen 

Prince Aemond Targaryen

Aemond One-Eye, Aemond the Kinslayer

"I lost an eye and gained a dragon that day, and counted it a fair exchange."

Third child and second son of Viserys II and Alicent Hightower. Killed by his uncle Daemon in the Dance over Harrenhal in 130 AC. A caustic, envious man, but a renowned warrior nevertheless, Aemond was the only Targaryen ever to have taken the position of Prince Regent and Protector of the Realm when Aegon II was incapacitated and unable to reign.

  • Arranged Marriage: He agreed to marry one of Lord Baratheon's daughters to cement their alliance, although such marriage wouldn't eventually take place.
  • Blood Knight: He was bloodthirsty to the point of Stupid Evil, since he was more involved in terrorizing the Riverlands with Vhagar instead of managing things while his brother was sick and unable to rule. His regency was the most unfortunate period for the Greens.
  • Co-Dragons: To Aegon II with Ser Criston Cole.
  • Dies Differently in Adaptation: A very minor case; he's stabbed through his bad eye in the book and through his good eye in Histories and Lore.
  • Disproportionate Retribution: When he found out King's Landing had fallen to Rhaenyra's forces, he personally killed every man and boy of House Strong he could find because he was convinced the Velaryon princes (including Lucerys) were fathered by Harwin Strong, who was long dead by now. Keep in mind that House Strong was technically on his side, as its current lord was his own Master of Whisperers, Larys Clubfoot.
  • Dragon-in-Chief: As Prince Regent and Protector of the Realm while Aegon II is injured.
  • Dragon Rider: Rode Vhagar.
  • The Dreaded: Because he rode the strongest dragon in Westeros, fighting him alone was pretty much a death sentence. In the later part of the war, he spent months terrorizing the Riverlands, burning towns and castles to ash then disappearing before anyone could confront him. The riverlords were constantly begging Queen Rhaenyra to bring her dragons to stop him, until at last she sent Prince Daemon and Nettles to Maidenpool to search for him.
  • Dude, Where's My Respect?: Aemond apparently came back from Storm's End expecting praise for convincing House Baratheon to back Aegon...and instead got chewed out by his mother and grandfather for single-handedly destroying any chance of peaceful negotiation with Rhaenyra and her supporters. He got the "hero's welcome" he wanted shortly afterwards, however, from his brother Aegon II.
  • Establishing Character Moment: His reaction learning his father is dead:
    Aemond: Is Aegon king... or must we kneel and kiss the old whore's cunny?
  • Evil Nephew: There was no love between him and Prince Daemon, whom he considered something like his Archenemy, and spent precious time trying to defeat his forces. Their eventual duel was the climax of the Dance of the Dragons.
  • Evil Uncle: He was generally unfriendly to Rhaenyra's sons, but after the Vhagar incident that cost him his left eye, he eventually killed his nephew Lucerys at the first opportunity, even though they were on a diplomatic mission at the time.
  • Eye Scream: Lost his left eye when he was ten years old to Rhaenyra's children, who ambushed him after he slapped and pushed the youngest, Joffrey, into dragon droppings while attempting to claim the dragon Vhagar as his own shortly after his rider Laena Velaryon's funeral. He succeeded in taking the dragon, and considered losing his eye as a fair trade for riding the largest and most fearsome dragon alive. He would later die the same way when Daemon drove Dark Sister through his empty eye socket.
  • Foil:
    • To his Uncle Daemon Targaryen. Both are the wicked brother with a questionable background. Both are philanderers, unnecessarily brutal and both never waver in loyalty to their cause.
    • Rhaegar Targaryen, Duncan Targaryen and his cousin Jace Velaryon in that he supposedly abandoned his engagement to a Baratheon lady to marry the bastard witch, Alys Rivers and fathered a son.
    • To Gregor Clegane. Both are formidable and savage warriors who are considered The Dreaded for their faction (Gregor for his strength and size, Aemond because he rode Vhagar) and have a reputation for Disproportionate Retribution, both killed a non-combatant (Elia Martell and Lucerys Velaryon) in excessively brutal fashion that prompted the victim's family to plot vengeance and even appalled members of their own side. Both are considered deadly warriors but useless military commanders whose cruelty and stupidity ended up costing their faction in the long run, both spent a good portion of the war they fought in terrorising the population of the Riverlands until the crown sent a force to dispatch them (Beric Dondarion and Thoros of Myr for Gregor, Daemon Targaryen and Nettles for Aemond), both destroyed a prominent Riverlands noble family for the sake of cruelty (Gregor killed the last lord of House Darry because he didn't see any reason not to, while Aemond exterminated House Strong simply because of Rhaenyra's relationship with Harwin Strong), both lost a battle in the Riverlands that had major repercussions for King's Landing (Gregor's defeat at the Stone Mill bought Tywin Lannister time to save King's Landing from being sacked by Stannis, while Aemond's failure to reach his uncle Daemon at Harrenhal left the city wide open to fall to Rhaenyra) and both were killed in single combat by a family member of the noncombatant they'd killed at the start of the conflict, though not without managing to kill their opponent too (Gregor managed to smash Oberyn Martell's skull, but only after being fatally wounded with manticore venom, and Daemon Targaryen presumably fell to his death after putting Dark Sister through Aemond's head).
  • Finally Found the Body: It was years before his and his dragon Vhagar's carcasses were found, with Dark Sister still embedded in his skull.
  • General Failure: Despite being a renowned fighter, he was the single most incompetent military leader in the war. His Regency came extremely close to costing the Greens the war.
  • Glass Eye: Wore a sapphire where there was once his left eye, leading to his nickname of Aemond One-Eye.
  • Handicapped Badass: Despite losing his left eye, he became a accomplished swordsman under Ser Criston Cole's training.
  • Hot-Blooded: Deconstructed; lust for battle and a sensitivity to insults (both direct and implied) meant that he spent most of the Dance either trying to chase down Prince Daemon (who was more than willing to use himself as a distraction to keep Vhagar out of play in the big picture) or taking out his frustrations on the local Riverlanders.
  • It's Personal: Has a particular hatred for Rhaenyra and her offspring due to his losing an eye to her Velaryon kids, particularly Lucerys; this is why he has very little qualms killing him even when Lucerys is unarmed, defenseless and riding a smaller dragon.
  • Karmic Death: His killing of Lucerys is what drives Daemon to sent Blood and Cheese to Helaena, making her choose which son should die, driving her to madness. Later, Aemond is killed himself by Daemon Targaryen (Lucerys' stepdad) by driving his sword through his blind eye.
  • Kick the Dog:
    • As if murdering Lucerys Velaryon wasn't enough, when the boy's corpse washed ashore, Aemond gouged Lucerys's eyes out.
    • He nearly throttled to death the squire who brought him the news King's Landing had fallen to Rhaenyra and of the destruction of the Westerlands army at the Fishfeed, only stopping when Alys Rivers intervened.
    • Harrenhal's surrender enrages him so much that he needlessly slaughters the entire Strong family, even including bastards with only minor Strong blood.
  • The Load: While his dragon made him incredibly dangerous to the Blacks, his explosive temper and failed strategies made him a severe weakness, as well.
  • Malicious Slander: He was too eager to remind his nephews of their dubious parentage, as well as his older half-sister's sexual exploits. Of course, it's ambiguous whether or not these insults were genuine slander or not.
  • Nice Job Fixing It, Villain!: His obsessive quest for Prince Daemon in the Riverlands is what left King's Landing free for Rhaenyra's successful siege.
  • Nobody Calls Me "Chicken"!: Some say that what provoked Aemond to chase after Lucerys and kill him just after he'd left Storm's Landing was Maris Baratheon asking if he'd lost an eye or his balls.
  • Oh, Crap!:
    • It's said Aemond's final expression was one of terror before his uncle drove Dark Sister through Aemond's skull.
    • It's said this was his reaction to learning his stripping King's Landing of its defenders for an all out attack on Harrenhal had caused its fall to least until he then tried to cover it with homicidal rage.
  • The Resenter: His Freudian Excuse is his and his older brother's Passed-Over Inheritance, despite being legitimate sons of the king and the dubious parentage of Rhaenyra's sons. It very likely created an Inferiority Superiority Complex that their mother's own resentment only increased. Lucerys gouging out his eye just piled resentment on resentment.
  • Royal Brat: Seems to have been nothing but an arrogant, hot-blooded and even cruel kid in his childhood, given his interactions with his Velaryon nephews.
  • Shoot the Messenger: Aemond nearly killed the squire who brought him the news of King's Landing's fall to Rhaenyra (which was completely his fault), only stopping because Alys Rivers begged him not to.
  • Someone to Remember Him By: Falls in love with the mysterious woods-witch Alys Rivers and takes her as his paramour - and leaves a pregnant Alys behind during his final fight with Daemon. The fate of his bastard child with Alys has yet to be revealed in print.
  • Token Evil Teammate: Of the Greens, at the start of the war, he's the most psychotic, and of whom there is almost entirely nothing good to say (other than that he's genuinely loyal to his family, and excels in personal combat).
  • Undying Loyalty: For all his jerkassery he never crowns himself King despite ruling in his brother's name.
  • Unwitting Instigator of Doom: Not only does his murder of Lucerys kick start the war, but also led to Prince Daemon's revenge on Aegon's children and his sister's insanity.
  • Villain Ball: He killed his nephew Lucerys purely for revenge, despite the fact that they were both acting as messengers and under truce. This pointless act of cruelty is what kick-started the real bloodshed during the Dance of Dragons.
  • Warrior Prince: A Dragonrider prince.
  • What an Idiot!: Apparently, this was his mother and grandfather's reaction when they found out Aemond had killed Lucerys Velaryon, destroying any chance of negotiating a peace deal with Rhaenyra and her supporters.
    Otto Hightower: You only lost one eye. How could you be so blind?!
  • Worth It: He considered losing one eye a fair trade for obtaining Vhagar the dragon.
  • You Have Failed Me: Killed Simon Strong for surrendering Harrenhal to Daemon, and then killed the rest of House Strong because they were related to the long dead Harwin Strong.

    Prince Daeron Targaryen "The Daring" 

Prince Daeron Targaryen

The Daring

"My Lord is kind to say so, but the victory belongs to Tessarion."

Youngest child of Viserys II and Alicent Hightower. He died in 130 AC, during the Second Battle of Tumbleton.

For King Daeron I Targaryen (his nephew once removed), see here

  • Beware the Nice Ones:
    • He was pretty upset by Maelor's horrific death, and took it out on the people he felt were responsible. Given the circumstances, it's hard to blame him.
    • He tried treating with Ser Ulf and Hugh the Hammer. Their behavior was so awful, he signed off on the Caltrops' scheme to kill them the minute it was presented to him.
  • Dead Person Impersonation: Subjected to this in later years.
  • Dragon Rider: Rode the dragon Tessarion.
  • Food Slap: Daeron angrily threw his wine in the face of Hugh Hammer when the dragonseed started claiming he should be proclaimed king by the Greens.
  • Kick the Dog: To prove he was Not So Different from his brothers, he allowed the Hightower troops to sack Bitterbridge while he burned the town on dragon back in revenge for the death of his nephew Maelor.
  • Misplaced Retribution: Burned down the town of Bitterbridge for the death of his nephew Maelor, even though the ones responsible for the Prince's death were already dead or had been dealt with by Lady Caswell.
  • Modest Royalty: Even when directly praised, he politely declines and instead credits his dragon and his men.
  • Nice Guy: At least the nicest of the Greens.
  • Not So Above It All:
    • While not explored as much as his older brothers, Gyldayn states he was also resentful towards Rhaenyra's kids like they were.
    • When the treacherous Dragonseed Hugh Hammer started calling himself "King", Daeron was not very pleased at this slight.
  • Pay Evil unto Evil: In response to the people of Bitterbridge brutally murdering his toddler nephew, he had the town sacked, much of its populace killed, and then burned the rest with his dragon Tessarion. He even invokes the trope himself:
    Daeron Targaryen: You shall receive the same terms you gave my nephew Maelor.
  • Pretty Boy: He was very handsome.
  • "Rashomon"-Style: There are several versions of his death. One claims he was killed by Black Trombo, a Myrish sellsword fighting for the Blacks who split Daeron's skull with a mace. A second claims he was slain by a random man at arms who had no idea who he'd killed. A third claims that Daeron perished when his tent was set ablaze by the dragon Seasmoke and then collapsed on top of him. The only consensus is that Daeron didn't survive the Second Battle of Tumbleton.
  • Sibling Yin-Yang: The Nice Guy to Aemond's Jerkass.
  • Token Good Teammate: Both sides in the war were very much Grey-and-Gray Morality, but compared to his brothers Aegon II (a pouty, lazy, lecherous slimeball) and Aemond (an arrogant hothead with absolutely no sense of military strategy, who abandoned his own army to their death), Daeron the Daring was an all-around wonderful guy. When Aemond heard his father was dead, his only reaction was to bluntly ask if his brother was now king, or if they had to kneel and kiss Rhaenyra's cunt. Daeron's reaction to hearing his father had died was to weep. The war would have gone very differently if Daeron had been the eldest son - though arguably Aegon II being eldest and Daeron being the youngest is what shaped them into the people they were. The mind boggles at what would have happened if A - Aegon II had stayed dead, and B - the bloody Caltrops succeeded in killing the Two Betrayers and Second Battle of Tumbleton never happened.
  • The Squire: To Lord Ormund Hightower.
  • Villain with Good Publicity: Not quite so a villain, but still the reader has to wonder what Daeron was doing at Aegon's and Aemon's side, even when he is their brother and a Green through and through. If anything, Daeron existed to give Queen Alicent and the Greens some degree of credibility (not saying that The Blacks were a bunch of angels).
  • Warrior Prince: A Targaryen dragonrider.

The Kingsguard of Aegon II Targaryen

For other Kingsguard before the events of ASOIAF, see here

    Lord Commander Criston Cole 

Ser Criston Cole, Lord Commander of the Kingsguard

The Kingmaker
"It is not for you to plead for support from your lords, like a beggar pleading for alms. You are the lawful king of Westeros, and those who deny it are traitors. It is past time they learned the price of treason."

Leader of the Kingsguard during the reign of Viserys I. It was said he was having an affair with Princess Rhaenyra but it ended badly so he withdrew his support from her and declared loyalty to her half-brother Aegon II, earning his nickname "The Kingmaker". This set off the war known as the Dance of the Dragons.

  • Alliterative Name: Criston Cole.
  • Badass Normal: He didn't have a Valyrian steel sword or freakish size like Daemon or Harwin, yet he dominated against both in melees.
  • Bodyguard Crush: He served as Rhaenyra's sworn shield for several years before joining the Kingsguard, and is rumored to have desired or even been in a relationship with her. The final break that led to Cole's defection apparently came when one spurned the other, though views on who exactly rebuffed whose advances are naturally colored by which side of the ensuing conflict people think was in the right.
  • The Champion: He was Rhaenyra's, serving as her sworn shield starting in 103 AC, when she was seven and he was twenty-one. This lasted for ten years, until their falling out.
  • Co-Dragons: With Aemond One-Eye to Aegon II.
  • Deliberate Values Dissonance: According to Archmaester Gyldayn, Ser Criston was largely concerned with the late Laenor Velaryon's influence over his sons with Rhaenyra, considering that he was a homosexual, a purported pederast and who knows what other aberrations he had that could had been inculcated in the Princes Velaryon.
  • Dropped a Bridge on Him: Invoked by his killers, who specifically deny him any possible romanticization of his death and respond to his challenge of a trial by combat by simply riddling him with arrows.
  • Epic Flail: He preferred using a flail in combat. Its relatively uncommon fighting style allowed him to defeat even Daemon Targaryen in a tourney melee, and the formidable Harwin Strong, though each of them was armed with a Valyrian steel sword. In the same tourney that he broke Harwin's collarbone, he used a flail to bash Joffrey Lonmouth's head in, mortally injuring Laenor Velaryon's paramour.
  • Foil: Ser Jaime Lannister directly compares himself to Criston Cole. Both are polarizing figures who were celebrated warriors who became defined by one single act. For Ser Criston it was making a King, whereas Ser Jaime killed a King. But the Kingmaker's one act led to the death of thousands, whereas the Kingslayer's actions saved thousands.
  • Four-Star Badass: He was an extremely competent army commander.
  • From Nobody to Nightmare: He went from being the son of the steward of Blackhaven to the commander of the Kingsguard whom history holds partly responsible for one of the most devastating wars in the history of Westeros.
    Ser Arys Oakheart: The Kingmaker wrought grave harm and gravely did he pay for it.
  • Heel–Face Turn/Face–Heel Turn: Depending which side you are on. Ser Jaime and Ser Loras discuss his legacy in A Feast for Crows with Jaime noting that he was a Knight that represented "the best and the worst" of the Kingsguard.
  • Historical Hero Upgrade: Remembered as "the best and worst" of the Kingsguard, despite the histories showing him to be far more of the latter than the former. He was a petty, jealous, misogynistic homophobe who razed farmland and slaughtered unarmed old men. Even judging him by his marital prowess, he managed only two victories in battle, one of which came with heavy losses, before getting utterly slaughtered and dying against the Winter Wolves.
  • If I Can't Have You...: One possible interpretation of the falling out between him and Rhaenyra is that he fell in love with her and she spurned his advances. Whatever the case, he dedicated the rest of his life to making sure she would never be crowned Queen of the Seven Kingdoms.
  • Kick the Dog: During the wedding tourney of Rhaenyra with Ser Laenor Velaryon, Ser Criston slayed Ser Joffrey Lonmouth during the jousts. Ser Joffrey was Laenor's best friend, confidante and possible lover; this was a move by Ser Criston which is largely considered to be a petty action just to spite Rhaenyra and Laenor and sour their celebratory occasion.
  • Kingmaker Scenario: How else did he get his nickname?
  • Knight Templar: Killed a defenseless old man for speaking his mind.
  • Malicious Slander: There were rumours about Laenor Velaryon in addition to his Transparent Closet being a pederast and worse, but Criston's the only person recorded by Gyldayn as giving voice to these rumours.
  • The Mentor: Trained Aemond One-Eye to be a warrior.
  • Number Two: Became Hand of the King to Aegon II.
  • The Oath-Breaker: Betrayed Viserys I's Dying Wish by participating in a coup to deny the crown to his rightful heir.
  • "Rashomon"-Style: Two different tales exist of how the rift between him and Rhaenyra developed.
    • Celibate Hero: According to the fool Mushroom, Ser Criston took his vows very seriously, and when Rhaenyra attempted to seduce him into taking her maidenhead in the White Gold Tower, he rejected her. This caused her to seek out and sleep with Ser Harwin Strong, and Ser Criston switched his loyalty to Queen Alicent out of disgust.
    • Not Good with Rejection: According to the account of Septon Eustace, Ser Criston went to Rhaenyra's bedchamber one night and confessed his love to her, asking her to run away to Essos and marry him. She rejected his plea, claiming that she was meant to be more than the wife of a common sellsword. His response was to ensure she never got the Iron Throne.
      • In a different note concerning this point, Cole's main concern is purported to have been actually keeping Daemon Targaryen and the Princes Velaryon note  away from the Iron Throne, not so much denying Rhaenyra of her claim.
    • Surprisingly, even though Septon Eustace's account is the one biased in favor of the greens, his account is actually the one that depicts Cole in the worst light. It is Eustace, not the pro-Rhaenyra Grand Maester Munkun, who says that Cole wanted to break his vows and elope with Rhaenyra. Moreover, as revealed in Fire & Blood, Munkun's version just says that Lord Beesbury was thrown in the dungeons where he later died of a chill. Eustace's version is the one that says Cole personally slit his throat at the council table itself. Even then, it's not clear if this means Eustace's account is honest...or if perhaps he's trying to present Cole in a bad light to make Aegon II look better, i.e. framing Cole as an evil knight who led Aegon II astray with bad counsel.
  • Rank Up: He was made commander of the Kingsguard after his predecessor, Ser Harrold Westerling, died.
  • Talking Your Way Out: Before the Butcher's Ball, realizing his army was outnumbered and in no condition to fight an enemy army of Riverlanders and northerners, Cole called a parley and tried to negotiate terms. All his efforts to negotiate fail; his offer to retreat in exchange for his men's lives was dismissed by Garibald Grey, who refused the chance to avenge the deaths of his own men. When Cole pointed out a battle would cost the lives of many of their own men, Roderick Dustin laughed and told Cole that his northerners would rather die in one last glorious battle than freeze or starve to death with the onset of winter. When Cole finally tried to challenge all three of the enemy commanders to a trial by combat, Ser Pate of Longleaf just dismissed the offer and signaled Red Robb Rivers to riddle Cole with arrows.
  • Undignified Death: At the Butcher's Ball, Cole was basically abandoned by Aemond Targaryen, who flew on Vhagar to burn the Riverlands when they were supposed to rendezvous together with Lord Ormund Hightower and Prince Daeron. He proceeded to take Harrenhal, which was vacated by Daemon Targaryen. He was ambushed by Lord Roderick Dustin at the God's Eye. Upon seeing himself outnumbered, surrounded and in the eve of defeat, Ser Criston tried to instigate a duel in single combat against Ser Garibald Grey, Lord Dustin and Ser Pate of Longleaf, but they all refused him. He was instead riddled with arrows and his men were brought down by Dustin's forces.
  • The Unreveal: It's not quite clear what made him betray Rhaenyra, but whatever happened between them was bad. Rhaenyra marrying Daemon didn't help.

    Ser Rickard Thorne 

Ser Rickard Thorne

A knight of House Thorne and member of Viserys I and Aegon II's Kingsguard.

  • Bodyguarding a Badass: Before his injuries, Aegon II was a highly capable warrior and dragonrider who hardly needed the protection of the Kingsguard.
  • Failure Knight: He and his charge Prince Maelor are killed by a mob.
  • Famous Ancestor: He is the only other known member of House Thorne, the other is Alliser Thorne from the Night's Watch.

    Ser Willis Fell 

Ser Willis Fell, Lord Commander of the Kingsguard

A knight of House Fell and member of Viserys I and Aegon II's Kingsguard. During the reign of Aegon III Targaryen, he was ascended to Lord Commander until his untimely death from the Winter Fever.

  • Bodyguarding a Badass: Before his injuries, Aegon II was a highly capable warrior and dragonrider who hardly needed the protection of the Kingsguard.
  • Dropped a Bridge on Him: Fire and Blood reveals that after returning to King's Landing with Jaehaera, he became one of the many victims of the Winter Fever of 133 AC.
  • Rank Up: Was promoted to Lord Commander of the Kingsguard during the reign of Aegon III Targaryen until his death from the Winter Fever.

    Ser Gyles Belgrave 

Ser Gyles Belgrave

A knight of House Belgrave who joined Aegon II's Kingsguard during the Dance of the Dragons.

  • Bodyguard Betrayal: His exact role in Aegon II's poisoning is unknown, but he was involved somehow.
  • The Conspiracy: He was one of several conspirators who took part in poisoning Aegon II after he refused to surrender following the defeat of his last army by the Blacks.
  • Death Seeker: He refused the chance to join the Night's Watch instead of being executed for his role in Aegon II's death, believing that he should not outlive his king and that his crimes deserved death.
  • The Oathbreaker: Betrayed his king to end the Dance of the Dragons.
  • Off with His Head!: He was executed by Lord Cregan Stark for his crimes.

Household and Supporters

    Ser Otto Hightower 

Otto Hightower

Hand of the King to Jaehaerys I, Viserys I and Aegon II, and father to Alicent Hightower.

    Alys Rivers 

Alys Rivers

A bastard of the Riverlands and Prince Aemond's bedmate.

  • Call-Forward: Much like the eventual Lady of Harrenhal Danelle Lothston, Alys was believed to be a witch who used sorcery to remain young looking.
  • The Mistress: She was Aemond's mistress despite him being engaged to a Baratheon lady, and valued her enough to actually listen to her.
  • Morality Pet: To a certain extent for Aemond. She manages to prevent him from strangling a squire who brought him the news about the Westerlands army being crushed at the Battle by the Lakeshore.
  • Older Than They Look: It is said she was much older than she looked, and used magic to keep herself young.
  • Seer: She can she the future in fires, similar to the ability of Red Priests.
  • Someone to Remember Him By: She is pregnant when Aemond is killed.
  • What Happened to the Mouse?: Her fate after the Dance of the Dragon is currently unknown. Any details about her bastard child by Aemond are also completely unknown.

    Ser Roger Corne 

Ser Roger Corne

A knight from the Blackwater Rush who, alongside Lord Owain Bourney, betrayed the blacks during the First Battle of Tumbleton.

  • Bullying a Dragon: Sure, provoke a brute who can bend steel bars with his bare hands and who happens to own a dragon. Nothing will go wrong.
  • Cruel and Unusual Death: Having three horse nails embedded in your skull is not a pretty way to die.
  • Everyone Has Standards: While he might have betrayed the blacks, he wasn't going to tolerate treason towards the green cause.
  • Turn Coat: He was secretly a supporter of the greens, and when the treason occurred, he ordered his men to open the gates of the town.

    The Two Toms 

Tom Tangletounge, Tom Tanglebeard

Father and son, they were two men in service to King Aegon II.


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