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House Targaryen: The Abridged Works of Maester Jon
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    House Targaryen:
    The Abridged Works of Maester Jon

    PLM4HZc.png


    The following is an abridged collection of the Masterworks of Maester Jon, formerly of House Umber, on the Reigns and Lives of the Kings, Queens and Notable Peoples of Westeros from 282 AC until the year 600 AC, which the respected scholar completed in the year 725 AC. Beginning with the last days of the reign of Aerys II Targaryen and carrying on until just under two centuries ago, 600 AC. Whilst Maester Jon tried to avoid political bias in his sources, the writer must admit that there is a high chance of at least some bias given the length of time that has passed since the events described.


    Whilst respected, Maester Jon’s original language was blunt and inelegant, likely due to his Northern heritage. So I, Olyvar of Nightsong have made the appropriate changes. The information remains the same, however.


    Regardless, I do hope it serves its purpose and conveys the information herein in an easily understandable manner.


    -Olyvar of Nightsong

     
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    Book 1: Silver Prince, Pained Prince, Scholar Prince, Promised Prince
    The first of Maester Jon’s Masterworks. This particular work focuses on the reigns of King’s Rhaegar I, Aegon VI, Maegor II and Jaehaerys III, all of House Targaryen. It covers the First Baratheon Uprising, the Expeditions of Aegon VI, the Great Summer Sickness, the Return of the Dragons, the War for the Dawn, the Night King’s Kiss, The Long Spring and the events that led to the Second Dance of Dragons.


    Maester Jon completed this particular work in 710 AC.
     
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    Rhaegar I Targaryen
    HWdxA62.jpg


    Reigned: 283AC - 319AC

    Spouses: Ellia Martell/Lyanna Stark
    Children: Rhaenys Targaryen, Aegon Targaryen, Visenya Targaryen

    Rhaegar I Targaryen, son of the Mad King Aerys II Targaryen, is perhaps one of the more controversial Monarchs to sit on the Iron Throne. As a Prince, he was wildly popular. An experienced, and near unrivaled tourney knight, famously winning Lord Walter Whent’s Tourney in 281AC, where he crowned Lyanna Stark as his ‘Queen of Love and Beauty’, doing so over his own wife, Ellia Martell of Dorne. This predictably caused scandal, so much so that Princess Ellia even started using separate apartments on Dragonstone to avoid him. She need not have bothered. Early the following year, Rhaegar absconded with Lyanna, vanishing into the Dornish mountains.

    Lyanna’s brother, Brandon Stark, marched south to King’s Landing, demanding the return of his sister and the death or exile or Rhaegar. Considering this to be a threat, Aerys had him imprisoned and called his father Rickard Stark, to the capital. Rickard was arrested and demanded Trial by Combat. What followed still haunts the memories of both the North and the Capital to this day.

    Thus, in late 282AC, Lord Robert Baratheon, aided by Lords Arryn, Stark and Tully, declared war upon King Aerys II. Prince Rhaegar remained in Dorne, in his ‘Tower of Joy’ with Lady Lyanna. It was only in mid 283AC, when he received news that his father was dead did Rhaegar come out of hiding. Leading the Royalist forces to victory in the Second Battle at Summerhall, the now King Rhaegar then marched onto Nightsong, where he crushed the remainder of the Baratheon Loyalists in the Stormlands, leaving Mace Tyrell to besiege Storm’s End.
    Rhaegar then led his forces up to Dyre Den, where Lord Jon Arryn was slain. The Westerlands had remained neutral during the war but after defeat at the Battle of Dyre Den, Tywin Lannister saw that the Rebels cause was doomed. He marched on Riverrun, and forced Hoster Tully to surrender. Eddard Stark and Robert Baratheon were defeated at the Trident, and the War was over. Blame for Aerys II’s death fell on Ser Jaime Lannister, who was removed from the Kingsguard and banished, although he later returned, albeit confined to the Westerlands. He brought with him a bastard son, Joffrey Redclaw, founder of that future Great House.

    House Connington has raised up as the Lords Paramount of the Stormlands, whereas House Darry got the Riverlands and House Grafton was raised as such in the Vale, but only after House Arryn declared independence after the Rebellion. Sadly for House Arryn, most of their forces died during the Baratheon Uprising, so their rebellion was a short one, and likely doomed from the start. The North was only spared great punishment by the insistence of Queen Lyanna, although their taxes were increased by half for a decade. Said tax financed the rebuilding of Summerhall.

    Whilst the start of his reign was strong and glorious, Rhaegar soon turned his attention to the prophecy to which he is most attributed, that of the ‘Prince that was Promised’. Once more under the guidance of the Hand of the King, Tywin Lannister, Westeros soon returned to the peace it enjoyed under the Mad King and Lord Tywin.

    The King was mostly absent, obsessing over his new daughter, Princess Visenya. His brother, Prince Viserys, took up holy vows, serving as the Septon of Driftmark for two-and-fifty years. When Lord Eddard Stark died of the Flu in 286AC, Rhaegar was suspected of killing him. It was Lady Regent Catelyn Stark that avoided another Uprising akin to that of the Arryns. The move was not popular with the Northman, nor was Rhaegar’s apathy on the matter. Queen Lyanna even went with Queen Ellia to Dorne when the latter went to visit her brother, Prince Doran. But her reaction paled to that of Robert Baratheon. His friend and mentor were dead, so he deserted from the Night’s Watch, and travelled far to the North. When next he was seen, he was Magnar of the Thenns and King-Beyond-the-Wall.

    Rhaegar’s continued inaction in dealing with him when Magnar Robert attacked the Wall did little to mend his relationship with Queen Lyanna, who is said to have led the Crownlands army in person. Robb Stark, Lord Paramount of the North and Queen Lyanna’s nephew was borderline treasonous in his contempt for the King, and was only spared punishment when both Queen Lyanna and Queen Ellia stepped in.

    His grandchildren were born within a few short months of one another, after which he exiled his daughters to Summerhall, and forbade their brother-husband from seeing them, as in his words: ‘Their part in the prophecy is over.’. He is known to have tried to seize the children so as to raise them himself in King’s Landing, and demanded that his daughter Visenya renamed her son Jaehaerys, instead of Maegor but she refused, stating that it was high time someone tried to remove the stain from the name. What followed was the only recorded time Rhaegar ever struck one of his children, but it did enough. From that point on, Princess (Later Queen) Visenya would never speak to or communicate with her father again. It is not even known if she attended her mother’s funeral so as to avoid him, though most sources claim she did not, such was the level of her enmity.

    And when Maegor and Helaena were of age, Rhaegar forced them into marriage, like he had done with their parents. After Princess Helaena gave birth to their son, Jaehaerys, she, like her mother, was sent to Summerhall. Rhaegar was reportedly happy with the boy, stating “I finally have my Promised Prince.”

    Rhaegar I’s end was not a glorious one in battle, nor a sombre one surrounded by family. After being declared incapable by his son Aegon, he was confined to his rooms. His wives were both dead, their remains on their way back to their respective homelands by Aegon’s decree instead of resting in what Rhaegar had planned to be their shared tomb. Completely alone and hated by his family, Rhaegar starved himself, and died on the 18th day of the Eighth Moon, 319AC at the age of 60. He intended to leave the Throne to his great-grandson, Jaehaerys, with his brother Septon Viserys as regent. Thankfully, said intention was ignored.

    Whilst the danger he believed would come eventually did during his grandson’s reign, and was defeated by the young Prince Jaehaerys, Rhaegar I did a great deal of damage to the Monarchy, to the point where the calls for an Elected Monarchy were prevalent until well into Jaehaerys III’s reign.

    Notable People:
    Robert Baratheon: The former Lord of the Stormlands and later Magnar of the Wildlings, Robert, son of Steffon, tried to seize the Iron Throne. When said attempted failed, he was sent to the Wall, but later abandoned it and became the Magnar of the Wildlings.

    Joffrey Redclaw: The legitimised bastard son of Jaime Lannister, The Kingslayer. Joffrey succeeded his father in 308AC, and would rule for four short years before his uncle Tyrion overthrew him. For seven years, he lived in a small cell, before he was blinded and finally beheaded. There are some that claim that Joffrey was in fact the son of Lord Jaime and his own sister, Cersei. But this is likely slander.

    Brynden Tully: The Lord Commander of the Kingsguard from 304 AC until his death a year later. The Blackfish led the Royal Armies against Robert Baratheon during the Second Baratheon Rebellion in 304 AC alongside Queen Lyanna Stark.

    Harlan Heathcliff: A lowborn squire that would serve as a squire to Rhaegar I and Aegon VI. During the reign of the latter, he would join the Kingsguard. During the reign of King Maegor II, he would rise to the rank of Lord Commander, and even the Hand of the King for a few months. He was one of the so-called ‘Knights of Winter’ that would perish during the Second Long Night.

    Kingsguard at the end of Rhaegar I Targaryen’s reign:
    Ser Parmen Crane, Lord Commander
    Ser Raymond Rykker
    Ser Jonnel Stark
    Ser Clarent Crakehall
    Ser Lucion Lannister
    Ser Malcolm Branfield
    Ser Manfryd Frey
     
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    Aegon VI Targaryen
    RFBqftx.jpg


    Reigned: 319AC - 332AC

    Spouses: Rhaenys/Visenya Targaryen
    Children: Helaena Targaryen, Maegor Targaryen



    Aegon the Sixth’s life was not a happy one. The only son of Rhaegar I Targaryen and his first wife, Queen Ellia Martell, and brother-husband to both of his sisters, Rhaenys and Visenya. His relationship with his father was strong as a child, but when he turned twelve namedays old, something changed. His father changed, and not for the better. Proclaiming that his prior statements were wrong, and that Aegon was not the ‘Prince-That-Was-Promised’, Rhaegar I all but cut off contact from his son. Aegon squired for Ser Arthur Dayne, a Sword of the Morning for two years, and then Lord Orbert Clegane of Castamere for another two after Ser Arthur’s death.

    His father named him as the official Regent in early 319AC in an attempt to bridge the distance between them, and as a gift commemorating the birth of Aegon’s grandson, Jaehaerys, and in all likelihood, an attempt to quell his rage at the house arrest of his daughter Helaena, at Summerhall. As history would prove, it didn’t. Aegon rallied the support of the council, including the Hand, High Septon and Lord Commander of the Kingsguard, and had Rhaegar I Targaryen declared incapable of rule. As Prince Regent, he sent the remains of Rhaegar’s wives to their respective homelands, even leading Queen Lyanna’s honour guard himself. He was at Harrenhal on the return trip when he received news that his father was dead. His first act was simple, lifting the house arrest of his daughter.

    He was crowned with Aegon I’s own crown, kept as a prize by House Qorgyle since the death of King Daeron I Targaryen.

    During his time as Prince of Dragonstone, he befriended two former members of the Golden Company, Jon Mudd and John Lothston, and invited them back to Westeros, where as King, he helped them establish themselves once more. In fact, House Mudd would rise to the Lord Paramountcy of the Trident after the Conflagration of the Riverlands, the succession war between House’s Darry and Tully that lasted from 324AC until 327AC. King Aegon elevated the Mudds to leadership, under the belief that a loyal bannerman was more trustworthy than a child of a disloyal one.

    Barely a year later, in 328AC, Elys Grafton, Lord Paramount of the Vale, declared himself King of the Mountain and Vale. As the last ‘Loyalist’ House in the Vale, this betrayal hurt Aegon deeply. Monford Velaryon led the attack on Gulltown, and Lady Shirei Mudd attacked the Bloody Gate. The rebellion ended at the Battle of Ruthermont, with the capture of King Elys and death of his brother, Ser Rodrik. To repay their loyalty, and as no Houses were ‘loyal’ in his eyes, he appointed House Velaryon as Lords Paramount of the Vale.

    In the Reach, House Tyrell was overthrown by House Hightower due to the former converting to the Faith of Trios, that strange faith native to Tyrosh. When House Tyell protested to Aegon, he offered to restore them to power only if they returned to the Faith. They refused, and the Hightower’s retained power.

    He is today known best for his Expeditions around the world, as far afield as Qarth if the journals he wrote are truthful. He found many, many treasures on these expeditions, even finding a dragon egg which he granted to his grandson.

    It was on his third expedition, to Old Ghis, that he found the ancestral Valyrian blade of his family, Blackfyre. It would not be the only lost Valyrian Steel Sword discovered during Aegon’s time on the throne, for the Lannister’s discovered their own, Brightroar, despite the many, many men it supposedly cost them.

    Aegon VI died on the nine-and-twentieth day of the twelfth moon 332AC, due to injuries sustained in battle against Septon Owen, a rebel Septon that tried to put restore the faith to power. He was succeeded by his son, Maegor II Targaryen.


    Barely a moon later, the dragons returned.



    Notable People:

    Ma’aq, son of Maiwand: Where Tywin Lannister had Gregor Clegane, Tyrion Lannister had Ma’aq. An exile of the Jogos Nhai, he rode a zorse, the native striped steed of his people. He was a good strategist, and the terror of the West for a number of decades.

    Ser Ardrian Longwaters: When King Aegon VI Targaryen left the capital to go on his expeditions, he often left his lifelong friend, Ser Ardrian Longwaters, as Lord Regent in his stead. Whilst impressive when dealing with matters of state, with regards to matters of war he often handed control over to the Lord Commander of the Kingsguard, first Malcolm Branfield, and then Manfryd Frey.

    Septon Owen: A radical Septon hailing from Weeping Town. He called for the High Septon to be installed on the Iron Throne. His following grew quickly, although was mostly comprised of peasants and untrained boys. Very few annointed knights joined his cause. Despite this, Septon Owen managed to cause the death of his great adversary, the King, even if he did not live long enough to see it.



    Kingsguard of the end of Reign
    Ser Manfryd Frey, Lord Commander of the Kingsguard
    Ser Harlan Heathcliff
    Ser Raymond Rykker
    Ser Edmyn Fowler
    Ser Qyle Martell
    Ser Clarent Crakehall
    Ser Petyr Sand
     
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    Maegor II Targaryen
    meVt8Dt.jpg


    Reigned: 332 AC - 341AC

    Spouses: Helaena Targaryen
    Children:Jaehaerys Targaryen, Bellegere Otherys (rumoured)



    Maegor II Targaryen, nicknamed ‘The Scholar King’ and ‘The Cheerful Dragon’, was known for his pleasant nature, martial skill and love of literature and theatre. His reign was just nine years long, and yet it was one of the most eventful periods of Targaryen rule for decades.

    Whereas his father resented King Rhaegar, Maegor avoided his grandfather entirely, opting to travel to Braavos at the age of four-and-ten and wait out his grandfather’s reign. It is here that he was rumoured to have had an affair with Bellonara Otherys, the Black Pearl of Braavos, and was in fact the secret father to her daughter, Bellegere, a future Black Pearl in her own right. It cannot be overstated that this was never proven, however.


    He was a talented tourney knight in his youth, even winning the Great Tourney of Kings Landing in 322AC, when he was but seven-and-ten. He named his wife, Helaena, as Queen of Love and Beauty. Their relationship was not a close one (due to the rumour that Queen Helaena preferred the company of women), but the Queen was Maegor’s closest advisor, even sitting on his small council for his entire reign as such.


    When he became King, and after an appropriate period of mourning, Maegor II Targaryen hosted seven days of feasting and partying. A great tourney was also held, with Ser Manfryd Martin taking the final victory in the joust.


    However, all this joy and happiness would come to a crashing halt, due to the four year terror that was The Great Summer Sickness. The same illness that plagued the reign of Daeron II Targaryen had returned to devastate Westeros once more. For four years, starting in 334AC until 338AC, the disease ravaged the continent. Whilst the number of dead cannot be known, it is said that the dead outnumbered the living in Oldtown and Lannisport. Maegor ordered that each city and town quarantine themselves, and let the sickness run its course. Whilst he would face mass protest and minor uprisings, Maegor’s actions likely saved a great many lives, and whilst it would take half a century, ‘Maegor’ would become a more commonly used name in the Targaryen family.


    The worst hit by the sickness, surprisingly, was the Iron Isles. House Greyjoy barricaded themselves in their castle at Pyke, until an alliance of Goodbrother and Codd overthrew them. Houses Volmark and Orkwood rose to fight them. The ‘War of Salt and Steel’ lasted from 334AC until 339AC, and resulted in House Goodbrother rising to rule the Iron Isles.


    But despite all of this, perhaps the most impactful event that occurred during his reign occurred at the very start of his reign, the return of the dragons. Before Maegor was even coronated, his son Jaehaerys hatched one from the egg he was granted from King Aegon VI. He named the she-dragon ‘Sintharia’, later known as “Sintharia the Suneater” due to her size.


    His last public act was to knight and appoint Ser Brienne of Tarth to the Kingsguard, in 341AC, the first (and so far, only) woman to have served in the White Cloaks. Barely a moon’s turn later, he was dead, at the age of just forty. The cause was never fully established, but is theorised to have been poison, likely the plot of Lords angry with his actions during the Great Summer Sickness.


    The same day that King Maegor died, the White Raven’s flew, marking the end of a fifteen year summer.


    And with a long summer, came a long winter...

    Notable People:

    Lysa II Tully: Coming to rule Riverrun at the age of seven after the death of her grandmother and namesake, Mad Lady Lysa, the younger Lysa she widely considered the most beautiful woman in Westeros in her youth. She was known for her loyalty to the newly appointed Great House of the Riverlands, House Mudd.

    Ser Ossifer Slynt: Commander of the Gold Cloaks, Ser Ossifer Slynt was known for being utterly devoted to upholding the law, and staunchly incorruptible. His four daughters would set the stage for House Slynt’s rise to greater prominence, and his brother would go on to be High Septon during the War for the Dawn.





    Kingsguard of the end of Reign
    Ser Harlan Heathcliff, Lord Commander of the Kingsguard
    Ser Brienne of Tarth
    Ser Rhaegar Grell
    Ser Tywin Hill
    Ser Eldric Pryor
    Ser Edmyn Fowler
    Ser Harron Harlaw


    Please note: These Kingsguard are often referred to as ‘The Knights of Winter’. By the end of the War for the Dawn, only Ser Harron Harlaw would yet live.
     
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    THE WAR FOR THE DAWN: 345AC - 352AC
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    THE WAR FOR THE DAWN
    345AC - 352AC



    The War for the Dawn, being the war between the Kingdom of the Iron Throne and the Others, was a conflict that occurred early in the reign of His Grace, Jaehaerys Targaryen, Third of his Name, known as Jaehaerys the Great, that supposedly saved humanity (although most Maesters agree that the situation was likely not so dire.).


    It was midyear of 345AC that the word came from the Night’s Watch and its Lord-Commander, Olyvar Wyl. The Wildlings had come south, following their Magnaress, Hemlock Baratheon, last of her ‘Royal Line’, and were even willing to make peace with the Night’s Watch in exchange for safety. The Lady of the North, Jocelyn Stark, later known as ‘The Hammer of Winter’ went to meet with them, and when Magnaress Hemlock showed her ‘proof’ of the return of the Others, it is said that Lady Stark’s hair turned white from shock, despite her young age of nine-and-ten. She sent word to King’s Landing, along with her Husband, Cregard Glover, to request aid.


    The King, having been tutored by some of the believers of his Great-Grandfather Rhaegar’s ‘prophecy’, and so called his Armies to amass at Moat Cailin. Even the Ironborn under House Goodbrother answered the call. But House Hightower, under Lord Quentyn Hightower, refused the call, believing it to be a trick. When he died in 348AC, however, his son Normund Hightower would lead the armies of the Reach to aid his King.


    Queen Tyanna Redclaw acted as regent of the Kingdom whilst her husband was at war. Ser Harron Harlaw remained with her, and was thus spared the fate of his sworn brothers. Ser Harron had to put down many riots, and even an attempt to dispose the King by Dylan Rykker, Lord of Duskendale.


    The first battle of the war was at Hardhome, with the forces of Westeros winning a resounding victory. However, it was then that the massive army divided into seven smaller armies, likely in an effort to find the Night’s King more effectively. This single blunder would take years to repair.


    The largest disaster of the War went down in history as The Fall of the Fist’. Thousands of soldiers, including a Kingsguard, Ser Brienne of Tarth, died by ambush. Her body was only recovered fifty years later, and was received back in King’s Landing with an Honor Guard of both Black Brothers and Wildlings, who had sung songs of the warrior woman since her death.


    Sadly, in the seven years of War, many more Kingsguard would die, and many now famous figures would join them.


    The Lord Commander, Ser Harlan Heathcliff, died alongside the last Magnaress of the Wildlings in the desperate retreat from the Haunted Forest, which would later claim the life of Ser Rhaegar Grell due to the injuries he suffered. Ser Walder Whent, Ser Tyrion Spicer and Ser Harys Hersy died at Ruddy Hall, igniting barrels of wildfire at decimate the mass forces of the Wights and Walkers. Ser Lyle Vikary fell with his sworn brothers Ser Otto Osgrey and Ser Marq Webber at the Second Battle of Hardhome. Ser Eldric Pryor and Ser Edmyn Fowler fell together at Whitetree, when it burned. Ser Arthur Celtigar earned his place in history by holding Eastwatch for a full sennight with few men and little resources. Ser Argilac ‘the Bold’ Caron is said to have fought and died by the Night King’s own hand. Ser Tywin Hill died buying time for the Nights Watch to close the gates of Castle Black. Ser Roland Royce is said to have slain four Walkers before he too fell to the Nights King. Ser Mace Swann died at the Shadow Tower with a contingent of Stormlanders, inspiring the now beloved song ‘Noble Three Hundred’.


    The turning point of the war was in 348AC, when the dragon, Sintharia, was grown, that Jaehaerys III Targaryen managed to begin to turn the tide. From atop the beast that would become The Suneater, he forced the Others back from the North, and into the Lands-Beyond-The-Wall. The first major victory was the ‘Battle of Winterfell’ in mid 348. It was a young Eddard Whitehill, a boy of just three-and-ten, that rallied the forces of the living. During, it was he that unfurled the Royal Banner over the castle when the battle lines wavered, rallying the men to push onwards. He would, in time, become a Kingsguard.


    It would take four more years of bloodshed and war before the ’Duel at the Nightfort’ in 452AC, where King Jaehaerys, wielding Blackfyre, fought the Night's King. During their climactic battle, the King took a wound and was forced to pull back. His loyal knights and friends Ser Edmure Arryn and Ser Bryce Darry interceded, and fought on, and eventually both would fall buying time for King Jaehaerys III to kill the Nights King from behind, thus ending the war.


    The anniversary of the King’s victory is still celebrated each year on the Sixteenth Day of the Eighth Moon, as the ‘Feast of Night’s Fall’.
     
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    Jaehaerys III Targaryen

    6dif8xn.jpg

    Reigned: 341 AC - 389AC
    Spouses: Tyanna Redclaw
    Children: Aegon Targaryen, Naerys Targaryen, Elaena Targaryen, Visenya Targaryen, Maegelle Targaryen, Aelor and Aelora Targaryen, Aurion Fyreblood.



    The Prince-That-Was-Promised. The Father of Dragons. The Winterbane. The Dawnbringer. The Great Dragon. All epithets attributed to King Jaehaerys Targaryen, Third of his Name, the Twenty-First Ruler of the Kingdom of the Iron Throne. For good reason. He is of course remembered as the King that beat back the Others, and won the War for the Dawn and ushered in ‘The Long Peace’.


    How can one sum up such a life with mere parchment and ink? Born near the end of his Great-Grandsire’s reign, Jaehaerys was raised by a mix of King Rhaegar’s loyalists and those of his Grandfather, King Aegon VI. He was faced with the genuine believe that he was destined to save mankind on the one hand, and that he was simply going to be another King, albeit one that brought back the dragons, on the other.


    It was at the age of three-and-ten that those that those remained loyal to King Rhaegar’s beliefs gained a large amount of support for their cause, because Jaehaerys hatched a dragon, whom he named Sintharia. The she-dragon rarely left her Master’s side in her early years, apparently enjoying perching on Jaehaerys’ shoulder. When he was born, dragons had been gone for one hundred and seventy-nine years. By the time he died in 389AC, there were seven dragons in the world.


    In 337AC, at the age of eight-and-ten, he married Tyanna Redclaw, the daughter of the last Lannister to rule the Westerlands, Lady Lyene Lannister, and her Lord Husband, Joffrey Redclaw the Younger. She was known as an intelligent woman, and was entrusted as Regent of the Realm during the War for the Dawn.


    Of course, it is hard to write of Jaehaerys III without mentioning the War for the Dawn. As detailed further in the previous entry, it was the seven year conflict between the Kingdom of the Iron Throne and ‘The Others’. It took the deaths of many good men and destruction of most of the settlements Beyond-The-Wall, but the Iron Throne eventually proved victorious (for further details, please see previous entry). The winter would continue for another five years, and is often referred to as ‘The Night King’s Kiss’.


    In 358AC, Drad Kingsblood, a King-Beyond-The-Wall, led an attack on Eastwatch-By-The-Sea. The Lady of the North, Jocelyn Stark, earned her epithet as ‘The Hammer of Winter’ by completely annihilating the Wildling forces. She went further, spending two years Beyond-The-Wall destroying every Wildling Camp she came across. King Jaehaerys allowed her to do so, as the North had suffered far more during the Night King’s Kiss than the other regions of Westeros.


    Instead, the King spent many years on progress after progress, spending a great deal of gold on rebuilding works across the nation. He also used his daughters in marriage to unite the great families of Westeros. The heirs of Redclaw, Velaryon and Connington all married Princesses (Visenya, Maegelle and Naerys respectively). He named the first Prince of Summerhall since the time of King Maekar, in 371AC, Aelor, who married his twin sister, Aelora.


    The only blemish on the King’s character was his siring of a bastard son, the future Aurion Fyreblood. It was during a Royal Progress in 368AC that would lead to the man’s birth.

    When Prince Aelor of Summerhall died in a tourney accident in 384AC. Jaehaerys, in consultation with his heir, Aegon, granted Aurion the seat of Summerhall, forming House Fyreblood of Summerhall. Unlike the Blackfyre’s before them however, the Fyreblood’s are known for their near fanatical loyalty to their Targaryen cousins, serving as members of the Small Council, or Kingsguard, or even Queens and Consorts throughout the years. Aurion took for his sigil a single headed black dragon on a dark red field. According to some accounts, it was meant to represent and honor Sintharia, his father’s dragon.


    After his Queen died in 388AC, he took to wearing black clothing and Maekar’s Crown. King Jaehaerys III Targaryen would die just shy of a year later, in the library of the Red Keep. He had seen seventy name days. So ended the reign of one of the greatest Kings of the Iron Throne.


    He was succeeded by his son, Aegon, the so-called ‘Jealous Dragon’. It is a sad fact to acknowledge, but Jaehaerys’ actions, in marrying his daughters to Great Lords, in hatching the dragons, in showing the world what House Targaryen was capable of, he had sown the first seeds that would lead to the Second Dance of the Dragons.


    Kingsguard of the end of Reign

    Ser Triston Mullendore, Lord Commander of the Kingsguard
    Ser Eddard Whitehill
    Ser Olyvar Erenford
    Ser Tommen Bourney
    Ser Dickon Rykker
    Ser Edmund Yronwood
     
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    Book 2: The Long Peace
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    Book 2: The Long Peace
    The second of Maester Jon’s Masterworks. This particular work focuses on the reigns of those Kings of the Long Peace period other than Jaehaerys III: Aegon VII, Haegon I, Valarr I, Maegor III and Aenys II, all of House Targaryen, and ending with Daemon I Targaryen's betrayal of Aenys II's designated heiress, Visenya, and his plunging the continent into the Second Dance of Dragons.

    Maester Jon completed this particular work in 714 AC.
     
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    The Great Houses of Westeros: 400AC

    In the century after the death of Aerys II Targaryen, the Kingdom of the Iron Throne had changed immeasurably. Only two of the Great Families, House Stark of the North and House Nymeros Martell of Dorne, had held onto their rank of Lords Paramount. All the other Paramount families from the time of Aegon the Conqueror had fallen from power.

    The reigning Monarch in 400AC was Aegon VII Targaryen, although he would be dead barely a year later.

    The following are the Great Houses of Westeros at the start of the ‘Long Peace’ Period.



    Dorne: House Nymeros Martell of Sunspear

    108R0hs.png


    Since the reign of the Mad King, Dorne and the Martell’s have remained distant from the rest of the Kingdom, content to enjoy the peaceful, almost lazy reigns of four Princesses. However, towards the end of the 300’s, they faced unrest from Lady Alia Dayne, Lady of Starfall, who saw their reigns as self-absorbed and ineffective.


    The North: House Stark of Winterfell

    xqL5waZ.png


    Holding their position due to the intervention of Queen Lyanna Stark, wife of Rhaegar I Targaryen, the Stark’s of Winterfell faced with one of the most turbulent periods of their long history. From the short reign of Eddard Stark, the debauched reign of his son, Robb and the short and bloody reign of Robb’s son Andrey. Then from 334AC until 402AC, the North was ruled by ‘She-Wolves’ alone.


    The Westerlands: House Redclaw of Casterly Rock

    xVfDqT4.png


    Coming to rule the West by virtue of marriage alone, the Redclaw’s were the youngest Great House in 400AC. They faced continuous unrest from their Lannister cousins. But they remained amongst House Targaryen’s most loyal supporters. Their most famous member was Tyanna Redclaw, Queen-Regent during the War for the Dawn.


    The Stormlands: House Connington of Griffin’s Roost

    TOHRu0I.png


    Loyalists of Rhaegar I Targaryen, and staunch believers of his prophecy. The most famous, or rather infamous Conningtons of this period of history were Lady Paramount Rylla Connington and her grandson, Lorent Connington, the White Griffon. The former is remembered for her harshness in legal judgements, and the latter is remembered for trying to emulate his Targaryen overlords by marrying his relatives to one another.


    The Reach: House Hightower of the Hightower

    xhgR2qX.png


    The Hightower’s, like the Goodbrother’s, have perhaps the shakiest claims to their respective Lord Paramountcies, as they took control by force. In the Hightower’s case, it was the conversion of Willas Tyrell (the Younger) to the Tyroshi Trios faith and rallied them to unseat them. Aegon VII Targaryen allowed them to hold onto power after most of the Reach Lords through their support behind them. They remain loyal, despite internal, familial struggles.


    The Vale: House Velaryon of the Eyrie

    U5NQChU.png


    A curious addition to the Great Houses, the Velaryon’s had long since been amongst the staunchest of allies even before they had been elevated to the Lord Paramountcy after the Grafton Rebellion. The Velaryon Lords of the Vale have, historically, lived long lives. They maintain Driftmark, their ancestral seat, as a Summer home, or a place to retire to for their Knightly family members.


    Their rule was relatively stable, but was not without grumbling from what Arryn’s remained.


    The Trident: House Mudd of Oldstones

    O7VKWJ3.png


    In the history of the Riverlands, few can still claim a history longer than that of House Mudd. Once amongst the greatest of River Kings, then sellswords and hedge knights, then entirely by chance, friends to a King-To-Be (Aegon VI), to the Lords of Oldstones and finally Lords Paramount of the Trident.

    It was the Riverlands Civil War (324AC - 327AC), between Houses Darry and Tully at resulted them gaining such power. King Aegon, given his close friendship with Lord Jon Mudd, granted his daughter, Shirei as the Lady Paramount of the Trident. She famously led the Siege of the Bloody Gate during the Grafton Rebellion.


    Mudd rule once again quieted the Riverlands, and they too remain some of House Targaryen’s most staunchly loyal vassals.


    The Iron Isles: House Goodbrother of Hammerhorn

    NJNCKNu.png


    Like the Hightowers, the Goodbrother claim on the Iron Isles is shaky to say the least. During Maegor II Targaryen’s reign, and the Great Summer Sickness, the Greyjoy’s barricaded themselves within their castle on Pyke. Allied with House Codd, the Goodbrother’s launched their homeland into what is now known as the ‘War of Salt and Steel’.


    Curiously, out of all the Great Houses, House Goodbrother would produce the most members of the Kingsguard.
     
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    The Dragons of Westeros, circa 400AC.

    When Jaehaerys III Targaryen hatched Sintharia in 332AC, thus bringing the dragons back into the world, he decreed that his line of dragons would ever be named after various Valyrian demons and monsters.

    The return of the Dragons also heralded a massive change of the political landscape of Essos, with the rise of the Braavosi Freehold, The Theocracy of Three Cities, the Lysene Freehold and the Empires of Qaath, Ghiscar and, far to the east, a Jogos Nhai warlord, Temur, conquered the Golden Empire of Yi Ti. Mayhaps it was only a matter of time that an 'Age of Empires' would arise, or worse, it was the influence of that most insidious of forces, magic.
    Sintharia
    ‘The Suneater’:
    Hatched 332AC.
    Riders: Jaehaerys III Targaryen, Aelora Targaryen (Daughter of Jaehaerys III)
    Nefarian:
    Hatched 353AC.
    Riders: Aegon VII Targaryen
    Sabellian:
    'The Splendid'
    Hatched 356AC.
    Riders: Naerys Targaryen (Daughter of Jaehaerys III)

    Ebyssian:
    Hatched 356AC
    Riders: Ser Haerys Targaryen (Son of Aelor of Summerhall)
    Nalice:
    'The Black Queen'
    Hatched 374AC.
    Riders: Haegon I Targaryen
    Onyxia:
    Hatched 383AC.
    Riders: Ser Matarys Targaryen (Son of Aegon VII)
    Fahrad:
    Hatched 387AC.
    Riders: Larissa Targaryen (Daughter of Aelor of Summerhall)
    Atramedes:
    Hatched 396AC.
    Riders: Daenora Targaryen (Daughter of Haegon I)
    Drakkisath:
    Hatched 399AC.
    Riders: Maera Targaryen (Daughter of Ser Matarys Targaryen)
    Nyxondra:
    Hatched 399AC.
    Riders: Maera Targaryen (Daughter of Aelor of Summerhall)
     
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    Aegon VII Targaryen

    RwZpYmK.jpg


    Reigned: 389 AC - 401AC

    Spouses: Elaena Targaryen
    Children: Haegon Targaryen, Matarys Targaryen, Vaera Targaryen.


    ,

    Aegon Targaryen, Seventh of His Name, known as ‘The Jealous Dragon’ and, less commonly ‘The Maester King’, was the Twenty-Second Monarch of the Seven Kingdoms, the Second Ruler of the ‘Long Peace’ period, and the first rider of the dragon Nefarian.


    It is hard to imagine the pressure that must have been upon the shoulders of the Seventh Aegon. As the son of one of the greatest Kings in the Iron Throne’s history, there was likely little Aegon could do to compare to his father.


    Certainly, if the records are correct, Aegon was bookish and a middling swordsman at best, flew atop his dragon rarely, and was often loathe to leave the Red Keep during his reign. However, he improved relations with the Free Cities and the then recently arisen Braavosi Freehold. His son even married a Lysene Noblewoman, Gyellei Ormollen.


    Aegon VII Targaryen was apparently a remarkably intelligent man. He started to reform the legal system of his Kingdom, focusing on inheritance rights and the tax code, even writing some of the laws himself. His small council was made up entirely of Maesters, save for his Master of War and Lord Commander of the Kingsguard, Ser Eddard Whitehill. This ‘Chained Council’ led the realm in twelve years of peace and prosperity, and many maester’s like to claim that the ‘Long Peace’ lasted so long thanks to the foundation they set down. Whilst this is like to be merely pride, it is true that the Great Houses of Westeros prospered under Aegon, and even when they intermarried like in Aerys II Targaryen’s day, they remained loyal to the Crown.


    He expanded the royal library, and spent most of his free time there. Books from as far afield as Yi Ti are said to have been amongst his collection then, although whether or not the King had the ability to read that foreign writing system is not known.


    Aegon reportedly did not get along with his family, so much so that for decades after his reign it was rumoured that he murdered his brother, the Prince of Summerhall, Aelor. As for his bastard brother, Aegon reported commented on a number of occasions that the boy “Would have served better as food for the crabs”, but nonetheless agreed to grant Aurion Fyreblood the seat of Summerhall, if only to remove him from the Red Keep and the Crownlands. He is also believed to have disliked having other children interact with his son and heir in his younger years, which is almost certainly why Haegon I Targaryen went down in history as Haegon the Harsh.


    Despite his general disagreeableness with almost everyone else, his love for his sister-wife Elaena is quite well known and even the stuff of songs. When she died in 395AC, Aegon went almost mad with grief, forcing his son, Haegon, to step in as regent. Aegon’s life during the regency is not well known, but most reports state that he lingered in his chambers, and that when he was seen in public for formal events, he was gaunt, and near skeletally thin, his hair left uncut and he was often dosed with Milk-Of-The-Poppy. Many claimed that he was already mostly dead, but those that did often met with a sudden lack of a tongue, courtesy of Ser Eddard Whitehill.


    The King finally died in 401AC, apparently overdosing on sweetsleep. Whether or not this was intentional on his part, an accident, or something more sinister was never established. He was 60.


    Kingsguard of the end of Reign

    Ser Eddard Whitehill, Lord Commander of the Kingsguard
    Ser Galwell Jordayne
    Ser Ryam Footly
    Ser Emerick of Flea Bottom
    Ser Robb ‘Redback’ Marbrand
    Ser Edmund Yronwood
    Ser Cadan of Sourton


    Notable People:

    Maester Byam: Originally a Manderly of White Harbour, Maester Byam served on the ‘Chained Council’ as the Master of Whispers. Many a man fell prey to the deceptive nature of the jovial, overweight man.

    Temur:A Warlord of the Jogos Nhai. Temur united his people and invaded the Golden Empire of Yi Ti. He conquered them, deposing the Azure Emperors and installing his own line of Temurid ‘Lavender’ Emperors in their place.
     
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    Haegon I Targaryen
    6Pdj9Ko.jpg

    Reigned: 401 AC - 412AC
    Spouses: Gyellei Ormollen
    Children: Daenora Targaryen, Valarr Targaryen, Vaena Targaryen, Maegor Targaryen

    Haegon Targaryen, First of His Name, known as ‘Haegon the Harsh’, was the Twenty-Third Monarch of the Seven Kingdoms, the Third Ruler of the ‘Long Peace’ period, and the first rider of the dragon Nalice, The Black Queen. Whilst he reigned for one-and-ten years, he ruled for seven-and-ten due to serving as Prince Regent of the Realm.

    Like his father before him, Haegon’s reign saw many legal reforms across the land. However, his reforms were often seen as overly extreme, hence his common epithet of ‘The Harsh’. He dismissed the ‘Chained Council’, preferring a council of loyal Clawmen led by Lord Bartimos Lothston. The King was known to have been incredibly frugal in his day-to-day activities. He preferred water to wine, and rarely held feasts. He wore practical clothing, and the only piece of ostentation he allowed himself was his crown, that of Aegon IV Targaryen. He went as far as to rally against overindulgence amongst his lords, much to the then High Septon’s pleasure.

    Unlike his father however, Haegon I Targaryen was often given to poor health. This was not helped by the fact that he often had to travel across the Kingdom in place of his father and rarely had time to rest and recover during his time as Prince of Dragonstone and Prince Regent. Despite this, he went on a number of progresses during his Regency and reign both, constantly on the move. During his reign, two important families, Houses Whent and Grafton went extinct. Whilst the former is often put down to the so-called ‘Curse of Harrenhal’, the latter was due to the exiled House Rykker’s conquest of the Stepstones and subsequent slaughter of the forces of Gerold Grafton, the Pirate Lord of Sunstone and last of his once royal line. What had begun with a Gerold Grafton nearly two millennia prior, ended with a Gerold Grafton on the Stepstones.

    Haegon I Targaryen died in 412AC, at the age of One-and-Fifty. He was succeeded by his son, Valarr the Valiant. An era of unease and distrust was at an end. A new era of chivalry and virtue was about to begin.

    His dragon, Nalice would be seen flying over Blackwater Bay so often that the Smallfolk took to calling her The Black Queen. It is said that during her ‘reign’ over the bay, pirates became a distant memory. Alas, the magnificent beast would meet her end during the final battle of the Second Dance of Dragons.


    Kingsguard of the end of Reign
    Ser Robb ‘Redback’ Marbrand, Lord Commander of the Kingsguard
    Ser Emerick of Flea Bottom
    Ser Pate Sunderland
    Ser Galwell Jordayne
    Ser Halder Cressey
    Ser Balerion Velaryon
    Ser Rufo Hoat

    Notable People
    Rufo Hoat: A Qohorik adventurer that returned with Haegon I Targaryen on his return journey from his marriage in Lys. He served as Commander of the Household Guard for three years, before joining the Kingsguard. He would eventually serve as Lord Commander.

    Cormond Strongblood: A native of Andalos. Cormond led a rebellion against the mighty Braavosi Freehold, and upon his victory, declared himself High King of the Andals. Whilst this claim was ignored by the Targaryen’s, it would later allow Visenya I Targaryen to marry the deposed Cormond III Strongblood.

    Adrian Slynt: The Lord of Crown Keep and first Slynt Lord of Duskendale. After House Rykker’s attempted betrayal during the War for the Dorne, the Slynt’s remained vigilant against further treasons. After an attempt to seize Crown Keep for themselves, the Rykker’s were driven from Westeros by Lord Adrian’s tactical skill. Haegon named him Lord of Duskendale, and his brother Ser Daemon Slynt as Hand of the King.

    Jorah Rykker: The Lord of Duskendale and last Rykker to hold lands in Westeros. His son, Manfred seized Bloodstone and began a conquest of the Stepstones.
     
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    Valarr I Targaryen
    tNyq217.jpg

    Reigned: 412 AC - 445AC

    Spouses: Daenerys Fyreblood, Vaena Targaryen

    Children: Rhaella Targaryen, Calla Targaryen, Syaella Targaryen, Helaena Targaryen, Maegor Targaryen, Baena Targaryen, Daella Waters

    Valarr Targaryen, First of His Name, known as ‘Valarr the Valiant’ and ‘Valarr the Vain’, was the Twenty-Fourth Monarch of the Seven Kingdoms, the Fourth Ruler of the ‘Long Peace’ period, and the first rider of the dragon Wrathion.

    Valarr’s reign was, unlike that of his father, a time of festivity and knightly valor. The coffers were full, great illnesses non-existent. What’s more, a number of storied families were saved from near extinction thanks to Valarr’s assistance.

    He was married twice, first to Daenerys Fyreblood, then to Vaena Targaryen after Queen Daenerys’ death in 419AC. His first marriage had produced only daughters (Queen Daenerys did actually birth a son, Rhaegar, who was sadly stillborn), and his second marriage, until 423AC, seemed to be headed the same way. So Valarr started to take lovers in the hopes of producing a son. In all, he took four women as mistresses: Sallei Martin (Later Lady of High Heart in her own right), Jaenyssa of Tyrosh (Later Lady of Moonsgrey), Gael of Knight’s Hall (who vanished from the history books) and Mylenda Longwaters (Later Lady of Summerhall). However, the number of unacknowledged bastards Valarr sired is unknown, but it is estimated to be upwards of thirty.

    Despite this continued dishonoring of his wife, his knightly skill was unparalleled at the time. Such was his skill, the notoriously ‘Rhaegarist’ Connington’s conceded that his skill was on par with their still beloved former ruler (It has been suggested that it is due to this, and insistence that Rhaegar I Targaryen be the model ruler, the Connington’s would go on to support Daemon I Targaryen during the Second Dance. A choice that would cost them the Stormlands).
    The smallfolk loved him, due to his ‘roaming tourney grounds’, possibly the most costly tourney event in the history of the Iron Throne. For seven years, Valarr I Targaryen traveled around to various castles around Westeros, hosting tourney after tourney after tourney, and being incredibly generous with the prizes. Thanks to the efforts of Master of Coin, Lucifer Rosby, the Royal Coffers were not completely depleted.

    Two moons prior to his death, Valarr’s son, Maegor announced that his wife had given birth to twin sons, Aenys and Daemon. The future actions and marriages of these two brothers would sadly make the Second Dance of Dragons almost inevitable. It is said that his decline increased when he heard the news, so rapidly that all Grand Maester Tymond could do was make his passing comfortable and painless. But nonetheless, all accounts of Valarr I Targaryen’s final days state the same simple fact, he was utterly content, and at peace.

    It was during Valarr I’s reign that the dragon Sintharia was first referred to by her epithet of ‘The Suneater’.




    Notable People:

    Lao Cho: A general of the Lavender Emperor Abo Temurid. Lao Cho was tasked with taking an army and conquering as far west as he could before he was stopped..but General Lao wasn’t stopped at all. In a Campaign lasting a decade and a half, he took control over the Dothraki Sea, burned down Vaes Dothrak almost completely, conquered Ibben and even led an attempted invasion of the Second Ghiscari Empire before his Emperor recalled him. In his final years, he spent his days fighting rebellions in Asshai, before falling prey to court politics and dying, poisoned, in his bed at the age of three-and-seventy. He is considered one of the greatest military minds in history. Tellingly, it was only after his death that the Temurid Empire began to crumble.

    Emperor Maezon II: His Imperial Magnificence, Maezon zo Marlaq, Second of that most Noble Name, Emperor of the Ghiscari Empire and one true Master of Slaver's Bay and the Gulf of Grief, was the third ruler of the Second (or Restored) Ghiscari Empire. During his reign, he rebuilt its once great capital city and namesake, Old Ghis, which he took for his capital. He warred with the Temurid Empire, and even held the line against Lao Cho (mentioned above). Later in life, he would claim former Temurid lands as their Empire collapsed

    Kingsguard of the end of Reign
    Ser Wex Goodbrother, Lord Commander of the Kingsguard
    Ser Aubrey Costayne
    Ser Brus of Mudford
    Ser Devin Santagar
    Ser Gyles Yew
    Ser Clarence Wode
    Ser Petyr Hill
     
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    Maegor III Targaryen
    eoDXQv7.jpg

    Reigned: 445 AC - 470 AC
    Spouses: Helaena Targaryen
    Children: Aenys and Daemon Targaryen, Viserra Targaryen, Jacaerys Targaryen, Gaemon Targaryen, Saera Targaryen, Aegon Waters


    Maegor Targaryen, Third of His Name, was the Twenty-Fifth Monarch of the Seven Kingdoms, the Fifth Ruler of the ‘Long Peace’ period, and the first rider of the dragon Sartharion.


    Maegor is known to have been a keen hunter, and one of his private hobbies was in fact the breeding of hunting hounds. His favourite hound, Cloud, is said to have stood by the Iron Throne whilst his master sat upon it so often that he was nicknamed ‘The Eighth Kingsguard’ by the smallfolk.

    But aside from his hobby, the third Maegor was utterly unremarkable. True, he held tourneys and feasts, attended weddings and funerals, sat in council meetings and sermons, but taken as a whole, his reign was peaceful enough that it provided no real way for him to prove himself great.


    Outside his Kingdom however, there was great change. The Freehold of Braavos, aside from within the original Braavosi territory proper, collapsed. The Lysene Freehold under Archon Collio Rogare swallowed up the territories that were lost, and even began encroaching into Andalos.

    He arranged for his twin sons to take wives from two long-feuding families. Aenys took Jeyne Bracken as his wife, and Daemon would take Jeyne Blackwood for his own. The relationship between the brothers, and their wives, would be one of the last in the series of events that led to the Second Dance. In trying to stop the age old feud, Maegor III sadly made the horrors to come all but unstoppable.


    It was late in his reign that, after the death of a distant cousin of his, that a dragon, Seldarria, went mad in her grief (something that would occur a number of times in the Jaehaerian Dragons), and terrorized the Vale for a number of years. A sellsword, Ser Denys would slay her via a method of poisoning meat and weapons. Maegor would grant him the Lordship of Harrenhal, and thus was born House Belmont.

    House Tyrell, once Lord Paramount’s of the Reach, went extinct during Maegor III Targaryen’s reign.

    Maegor III Targaryen died in 470 AC at the age of six-and-forty. It is believed it was due to a poorly treated wound that he received whilst hunting. He was succeeded by the eldest of his twin sons, Aenys.

    Kingsguard of the end of Reign
    Ser Matthos of the Kingswood, Lord Commander of the Kingsguard
    Ser Maynard Brax
    Ser Mern of Old Oak
    Ser Jasper Mertyns
    Ser Lymond Roxton
    Ser Stannis Buckler
    Ser Ormond Mallister



    Notable People:
    Ser Karyl Vance: Master-of-arms at the Red Keep for nigh on four-and-forty years, and tutor to many, many famous knights and even King Maegor III. Ser Karyl joined the Kingsguard of Maegor III on his deathbed as a last request and reward for a lifetime of loyalty, before dying peacefully a few days later.

    Ser Matthos of the Kingswood: Once, Matthos was a simple, humble gamekeeper that managed the hunting grounds in the Kingswood. He befriended King Maegor III Targaryen in their youths, and would eventually join his friend’s Kingsguard.


    Ser Denys Belmont: A sellsword of mixed Valyrian and Andal descent, Ser Denys rose to prominence when he slew Seldarria the Crazed, a she-dragon that broke free after the death of her rider and terrorized the Vale. As a reward, Maegor III Targaryen granted the seat of Harrenhal to Denys and his family, allowing the new Lord to form House Belmont.
     
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    Aenys II Targaryen
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    Reigned: 470 AC - 487 AC

    Spouses: Jeyne Targaryen
    Children: Visenya Targaryen


    Aenys Targaryen, Second of His Name, was the Twenty-Sixth Monarch of the Seven Kingdoms, the Sixth and Last Ruler of the ‘Long Peace’ period, and the first rider of the dragon Creed.


    Much like, and perhaps more so than his father, the Second Aenys was unremarkable. A shy man, he spent a great deal of time in the royal library, even writing books and theses on a variety of subjects. Most of these were on Dragons, and he is credited with the concept of ‘The Great Dragons’, the seven greatest dragons in the known world.

    His small council was unusually meritocratic, as seen by the inclusion of both foreigners and commoners amongst its ranks. Whilst this was not popular with his Lords, it made him wildly popular with the common people. Added to this was his twin brother and Commander of the Gold Cloaks, Daemon Targaryen, the future Daemon I, who was known as a fair, yet incorruptible man. Even further was another of his brothers, Gaemon, the Septon of Dragonstone, famed for his charitable acts and sense of duty.

    The only notable event that took place in his reign was a large outbreak of Smallpox in Dorne in 475 that lasted three years. Aenys ordered that the Dornish border be closed, and made great efforts to mitigate the disease. But nevertheless, he remains deeply unpopular in Dorne, particularly in Western Dorne, where the disease completely wiped out House Dayne of the Elbow.

    Aenys II Targaryen died suddenly in 487AC, at the age of two-and-forty. With his death, the Long Peace that was begun by Jaehaerys III Targaryen in 352AC would come to a close, and the Second Dance of Dragons was mere moons away.

    Aenys’ wife and Queen, Jeyne Bracken, would give him only one child, a daughter whom they named Visenya (who is famed for a streak of golden hair she had amongst the traditional silver hair of the Targaryens.). Despite this, it was rumoured, persistently, the Author might add, that Queen Jeyne had a lover, and consumed a great amount of moon tea to hide her indiscretions. It was this rumour, planted by his sister-by-law, that led to the Princess of Dragonstone being declared a bastard by the ‘Blackwood Faction’, and in turn led to Daemon Targaryen, Aenys’ twin brother, to claim the throne in his niece’s place.

    It would have been hard to believe that the young girl, declared a bastard by her Uncle, would barely a year and a half later, duel the Usurper, and become the first ruling Queen of Westeros.


    Outside Westerosi borders, the Kingdom of Andalos fell to the Freeholds of Lys and Braavos. Its deposed King, Cormond III Strongblood, fled with his daughter and remaining supporters…..to Dragonstone.




    Notable People:

    Ayat of Qarth: Master of Coin for most of Aenys II’s reign. Ayat was originally a member of the Ancient Bank of Qarth, but came to Westeros to serve on the small council. He was reportedly the richest man in Westeros and owned a large manse in King’s Landing, where he, his many lovers, and equally many bastards lived. He collaborated with Daemon I Targaryen, and met his end after the Second Dance when he was one of five people executed as Daemon’s main supporters.

    Grand Maester Laziros: Reputedly the son of a Norvoshi merchant that died in Oldtown, Laziros joined the Citadel ostensibly as a means of survival, but soon grew to like his chosen lifestyle. He was a quick learner, and was swift to master the Westerosi tongue, though he apparently never lost his native accent. In his fifth-and-fortieth year, he was appointed as Grand Maester. He would work closely with Aenys II on his literary works on Dragons. He would be executed by Daemon I Targaryen for demanding that Visenya I Targaryen succeed her father, as was his intent.

    Falazza of Yaros: Falazza was the bastard daughter of Empress Sezza zo Marlaq. Whilst she grew up in the Imperial Palace of Old Ghis, when she was of age she was quick to leave for Yunkai. It was here that she founded ‘The Spring Bank of Yunkai’, which is now one of the five largest and most powerful banks in the known world.

    Lao Zhao: The only son of famed general Lao Cho, Zhao used the wealth his father amassed to do two things, the first of which was to arrange the overthrow of the Royal family of Leng and install himself in their place, and the second was to found a Bank of his own, ‘The Holy Bank of Lao’, which, like the Spring Bank of Yunkai, is also now one of the five largest and most powerful banks in the known world.


    Kingsguard at the end of Aenys II Targaryen's Reign

    Ser Desmond Piper, Lord Commander of the Kingsguard*
    Ser Aegon Waters*
    Ser Emory Sarwyck*
    Ser Orys Fyreblood*
    Ser Theonald Whitehill*
    Ser Ygon Goodbrother*
    Ser Olyvar Dayne, The Strongstar


    *It should be noted that those Kingsguard marked were executed by Daemon upon his ascension to the Throne for refusing to recognise his legality.
     
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    Book 3: The Second Dance of Dragons

    The third of Maester Jon’s Masterworks. This particular work focuses on the period surrounding and following Second Dance of the Dragons, the reign of Daemon I Targaryen, and his niece and successor, Visenya I Targaryen. This was one of the more controversial of Maester Jon's works at the time, as it painted Daemon the Usurper in a more reasonable light. Today however, it is considered to be the most accurate account of the reigns of the two Monarchs.

    Maester Jon completed this particular work in 718 AC.

     
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    The Great Dragons of the World prior to the Second Dance of Dragons:
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    The Great Dragons of the World prior to the Second Dance of Dragons:

    The 'Great Dragons' of the world are the seven most famous, or infamous, dragons at any given time. Once declared, a Great Dragon remains so until their death. The concept was put forward by Aenys II Targaryen, as a way of ranking different Dragons as their numbers grew. It is a council of Maesters, scholars and royals that judge entry.
    Below are the Great Dragons of the world circa 487AC.

    Sintharia ‘the Suneater’: The first of the ‘Jaehaerian Dragons’, and earliest known of that particular line. The mighty she-dragon was the mount of Jaehaerys III Targaryen, and a noted hero of the War for the Dawn in her own right. Between the death of her first rider and the Second Dance, the Suneater only took female riders.


    Nefarian ‘The Black’: An oddity amongst the Jaehaerian Dragons, Nefarian spent most of his time without a rider. He prefered living deep within the Mountains of the Vale, feasting on the hapless Mountain Clans that continuously tried to slay him.


    Sabellian ‘the Splendid’: Considered one of the most beautiful creatures to ever live, Sabellian the Splendid had spent most of his life on Dragonstone, where the citizens of the island all but worshipped him. He was the first Dragon tamed by House Fyreblood.


    Ebyssian, 'the Yellow Flame': The only Jaehaerian Dragon to actively be worshipped as a God, Ebyssian remains as he has done since the death of his first and only rider, Beyond-The-Wall.


    Nalice ‘the Black Queen’: Originally hatched by Haegon I Targaryen, the Black Queen all but ruled the narrow sea during one hundred and fourteen years of life. Pirates were a distant memory, and remained so for at least a decade after her death. A common saying about the relationship between the Black Queen and her final rider, Daemon I Targaryen is: “Jeyne Blackwood might have been his wife, but Nalice was his Queen.”. It would be her only known offspring, Wrathion, that would eventually kill her in a fierce Dragon Duel above Stokeworth in 488AC.


    Onyxia the Red: A dragon that loathed anyone that wasn’t a Targaryen, Onyxia was known to eat anyone that tried to tame her that wasn’t of the Royal line. Despite, or perhaps because of this, Onyxia is known to have laid many eggs, most of which hatched. She died in a dragon duel during the Second Dance.


    Fahrad: Known for his fondness for whales. Fahrad has almost always been ridden by a Velaryon. He was unusually slender for a dragon, but equally unusually swift. He fell to a band of Dornishmen, loyal to Visenya I Targaryen, during the Second Dance of Dragons.
     
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    The Second Dance of Dragons
    (Or the reign of Daemon the Usurper)


    soXJJOK.jpg
    EHw286O.jpg


    487 AC - 489 AC


    Daemon Targaryen, First of His Name, was the Twenty-Seventh Monarch of the Seven Kingdoms, and the rider of the dragon Nalice. He was the twin brother of his predecessor, Aenys II Targaryen, and usurper of his niece, Visenya I Targaryen. He was never formally crowned, but despite this, he is today considered a legitimate Lord of the Seven Kingdoms, as decreed by King Daemon II Targaryen.


    It is near impossible to write of the reign of the usurper aside from events of the Second Dance, as the Dance took up all but the first moon of his reign. But before the Dance even began, he had spilled blood. Six of his brother’s Kingsguard, Ser Desmond Piper, Ser Aegon Waters, Ser Emory Sarwyck, Ser Orys Fyreblood, Ser Theonald Whitehill and Ser Ygon Goodbrother, Grand Maester Laziros and the then High Septon were all executed for refusing to recognise his legitimacy. The former Queen, Jeyne Bracken, was also executed after a show trial, fed to the Black Queen for her supposed treason. It was this final act that drove the Princess of Dragonstone to declare war.


    Daemon’s sons, Crown Prince Jaehaerys and Prince Aegor led the initial attack from atop their dragons. Crown Prince Jaehaerys had the fledgling Deja, but Aegor had Fahrad, one of the then Great Dragons. The elder brother moved to attack Sweetport Sound, and quickly forced Lady Sunglass’ surrender. But Prince Aegor led an attack on Claw Isle, capturing it and torturing Lord Alyn Celtigar to death. Lady Paramount Elenei Connington executed Lord Taegon Fyreblood for refusing to fight for King Daemon, and Lord Bayard Hightower (or rather, Lord Hightower’s uncle and regent Ser Parmen Rowan) attacked Tumbleton, where Lord Selwyn Caron made up the Princess’ Reach Loyalists.


    In retaliation, the Dornish Houses under Prince Ronyn (the Younger) marched up through the Stormlands, meeting up with fellow loyalist Lady Maia Swann and liberating Summerhall and its then Lord Vaegon Fyreblood, the four nameday old son of the executed Lord Taegon. Lord Anders Baratheon soon joined them, and together the trio of Stormlords marched on Griffon’s Roost. Prince Aegor flew to defend his father’s ally, but the Dornish were ready for them, using ‘Scorpions’ to bring down the Great Dragon Fahrad. The two-and-twenty nameday old Prince was left near death, until an unnamed Dornishman slew him. Witnessing the death of Fahrad, Lady Paramount Elenei Connington surrendered, and the Stormlands were now Visenya’s.


    In the Riverlands, House Blackwood and their Tully, Darry and Belmont allies, marched on Oldstones, only for Houses Frey and Piper to rise in the defense of House Mudd. Their armies were evenly matched, even with the support of dragonriders on both sides. Visenya had Ser Baelor Targaryen and his Great Dragon, Onyxia. Daemon had no Great Dragons but his own after the death of Fahrad, but instead had numbers, and sent his brother Jacaerys and their cousin Vaekar Targaryen, atop their dragons Moldarr and Atramedes. By the end of the conflict in the Riverlands, all three would be dead. Atramedes was slain by Onyxia. She in turn fell to Moldarr, who in turn was butched by the most dangerous non-Great Dragon of them all, Jirakka, the mount of Septon Gaemon Targaryen.


    The North and Vale both opted for neutrality, and in a move that scholars suspect cost him the war, King Daemon flew to the Eyrie to demand the Velaryon’s support. By chance, he flew over the den of another Great Dragon, Nefarian. The elder beast chased the Usurper away, and with it, any chance of victory. The Iron Isles and Westerlands both sided with Visenya early on, the former out of a desire for vengeance for the death of Ser Ygon Goodbrother, the latter out of a frank desire for power (Lord Lewys Redclaw would of course go on to serve as Hand of the Queen after the war).


    In early 489AC, Princess Visenya marched on King’s Landing. From atop Wrathion, her loyalists demanded the city’s surrender. Unfortunately, the King and his Court had already fled to Stokeworth, seat of one of his loyalists, Lord Guncer Longwaters. After spending two days getting the capital in order, the Princess ordered her forces to converge on the last stronghold of the Usurper.


    A night before the Siege of Stokeworth, Queen Jeyne Blackwood publicly admitted that she had begun the rumours of Visenya’s bastardry, and that they were false. She then tried to surrender to the woman that she had wronged so deeply. Her husband had his Queen and her loyalists executed for treason.


    The Usurper spent that final night alone with his dragon. Come the dawn, he washed himself and his armour, told his men to surrender completely should he fall, and mounted the Black Queen for the last time. He took to the skies, calling out to his niece to end the war by Trial by Champion. Visenya and Wrathion took to the sky, and a battle soon ensued. Claw and tooth and fire, slowly moving from Stokeworth to Blackwater Bay. Nalice slashed out one of Wrathion’s eyes, but in the same moment, Wrathion tore open the Great Dragon’s belly, sending her tumbling into the dark waters below.


    Whilst as a Maester, it pains me to write, it is to his credit that King Daemon did not try to save himself. Instead, he remained in his saddle, staying with Nalice as she fell from the sky, choosing to die with the she-dragon that served him loyalty for over three decades rather than attempting to save his own life. Perhaps he regained some of his tattered honour for such an act, the Gods alone know. His body was found a few moons later, still chained to his mount.


    With her Uncle’s death, Visenya I Targaryen truly ascended to the throne. She was a moon's turn away from her eight-and-tenth name day. House’s Connington and Hightower lost their position as Lord’s Paramount, and Houses Swann of Stonehelm and House Caron of Tumbleton (later House Caron of Highgarden) took their places. Her victory, whilst not enough to completely throw off male preference inheritance, did make it so that a Princess of Dragonstone would always inherit before her Uncles, as seen with Visenya’s granddaughter, Tyanna I Targaryen.



    Kingsguard at the end of Daemon I Targaryen’s Reign

    Ser Olyvar Dayne, The Strongstar, Lord Commander of the Kingsguard
    Ser Kenric Tullymore
    Ser Harmon Buckler
    Ser Samwyle of Longtable
    Ser Vayon Ryswell
    Ser Ser Alyn Goodbrook
    Ser Colmar Blackwood


    All members of Daemon I Targaryen’s Kingsguard were dismissed after his death.


    The Second Dance of Dragons coincided with the Lysene Civil War, where forces under the command of Magister Joryllo Rogare rebelled against Doniphos Erosenes, who had declared himself Emperor of Lys and the New Valyrian Empire. Emperor Doniphos would be defeated, but managed to retreat to the lands of Sarnor, still proclaiming himself Emperor of the New Valyrian Empire. The two nations remain in a state of pseudo-war to this day.
     
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    The Great Dragons of the World after to the Second Dance of Dragons:


    With the death of three of the previous Great Dragons during the Second Dance of Dragons, Queen Visenya I Targaryen was in a position to name their replacements. She called the few members of her family that remained, including her uncle Septon Gaemon, and in return supported his rise to High Septon. In 490AC, they announced their choices.


    The three Dragons named were:


    Wrathion the Queenslayer: The mount of Queen Visenya herself. Wrathion was the only known offspring of Nalice the Black Queen, whom he killed at the end of the Second Dance of Dragons.


    Drakkisath the Blue: A virtual unknown until he was named as a Great Dragon, Drakkisath was known for his brilliant blue scales and lazy and almost pleasant nature. Despite this, he was Sintharia’s mate, and would go on to never lose a dragon duel or fight he was ever a part of.


    Jirakka: The most dangerous Dragon of them all, according to some sources. Jirakka was the perfect mix of swift and strong, with a vicious temperament. Jirakka took very few riders, but the most notable was Septon Gaemon Targaryen, son of Maegor III Targaryen and later the High Septon during the reign of his niece. Notably, she killed the dragon Moldarr during the Second Dance of Dragons.
     
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    The New Great Houses of Westeros after the Second Dance of Dragons:


    With the end of the Second Dance of Dragons, Houses Hightower and Connington lost their positions of Lords Paramount. It would be close to half a year before Queen Visenya would announce their replacements. With advice from those Lord Paramount’s that were loyal to her (The Iron Isles, Riverlands, Dorne and Westerlands), her Uncle Septon Gaemon, and her husband, Cormond Strongblood (who had taken to styling himself ‘King-Consort’), the decisions she made were:



    The Stormlands: House Swann of Stonehelm

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    As stubborn as they are honourable, the Swann’s were steadfast in their loyalty to the Princess of Dragonstone during the Second Dance of Dragons, even disregarding their own longstanding distrust of the Dornish and allying with them to avenge Lord Taegon Fyreblood. Whilst it is thought that Queen Visenya would have prefered that the Fyreblood’s ruled the Stormlands, due to the fact that their new Lord was a mere four namedays old, she opted for the ever reliable Swanns. A trust that was proven a generation later, during Jaehaerys IV’s conquest of the Stepstones.


    The Reach: House Caron of Highgarden

    PAbnGZf.png


    A cadet branch of House Caron of Nightsong, the Highgarden Caron’s originally held the seat of Tumbleton after the extinction of House Footly's main branch, from where they remained loyal to Princess Visenya during the Second Dance. In the aftermath of the conflict, they were elevated to the position of Lord Paramount of the Reach, and granted the seat of Highgarden, once held by a branch of House Hightower. Caron rule of the Reach has been relatively peaceful, although the south continued to see unrest from the Hightowers for a number of generations. It has often been said that the Lannister's, once rulers of the Westerlands, offered to buy the Lord Paramountcy of the Reach at the time, although no records remain to confirm, or deny, such claims.

     
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