House of the Dragon: Will Alicent Betray Rhaenyra?


Early on in “Home of the Dragon,” it looks like younger Rhaenyra Targaryen has not less than one pal she will rely on: Alicent Hightower. It quickly turns into clear, nonetheless, that the Hightowers have large plans for Alicent, which may doom her relationship with the younger princess. In reality, regardless of being one in every of Rhaenyra’s closest mates of their youthful days, Alicent is destined to turn into one of many architects of Rhaenyra’s biggest betrayal. Spoilers forward for the e book “Hearth and Blood” and probably for “Home of the Dragon” as effectively!

What Position Do the Hightowers Play at Court docket?

In “Home of the Dragon,” similar to in “Hearth and Blood,” the Hightowers occupy a robust place on the Targaryen royal courtroom. Whereas they’ve an historic historical past as “petty king” earlier than the Targaryen conquest, their present standing is basically because of the skillful maneuverings of Ser Otto Hightower, Alicent’s father, and the Hand of the King. Otto got here to energy throughout the rule of Jaehaerys I, the beloved king who’s the predecessor and grandfather of Viserys I, the present king in “Home of the Dragon.” Within the waning years of Jaehaerys’s reign, he appointed Otto as his Hand to take care of the realm, whereas Alicent, then solely 13 years previous, sorted the getting older king.

Following Jaehaerys’s loss of life and Viserys’s ascent to the throne, Otto continues to function Hand of the King. He clashes with the king’s brother, Prince Daemon, and a few rumors (although by no means confirmed) recommend that the foundation of the grudge is that Daemon slept with Alicent. Regardless of these private and political clashes, the Hightowers preserve a excessive place and a strong affect at courtroom.

Like so most of the noble homes, nonetheless, they’re at all times out for extra energy, and Otto is comfortable to make use of his daughter to achieve one other degree of sway over the king and the dominion alike. For this reason, virtually instantly after Queen Aemma dies, he tells Alicent to seduce the newly-widowed king.

Rhaenyra and Alicent’s Relationship within the Books

In “Home of the Dragon,” Rhaenyra and Alicent appear to be nearer than they’re within the books, the place Alicent is 9 years older than Rhaenyra. Alicent does marry Viserys the yr after the loss of life of Queen Aemma. At first, she and Rhaenrya are reported to have a great relationship. She is, in spite of everything, nearer in age to Rhaenyra than she is to her new husband and his advisors.

The connection between the ladies deteriorates after Alicent provides delivery to a son, Prince Aegon, adopted by extra kids. By her father’s decree, Rhaenyra continues to be the inheritor, however Alicent, Otto, and the Hightower faction consider that Aegon ought to take priority, because the male inheritor. A rift between queen and princess grows, and even whereas Viserys nonetheless lives, folks start to take sides. Otto even winds up being banished from courtroom when he pesters Viserys one time too many about altering the inheritance to favor Alicent’s kids.

When Viserys dies, Alicent, Aegon, and the Hightower faction select to take energy for themselves. Earlier than Rhaenyra, who was nonetheless Viserys’s supposed inheritor, even hears about her father’s loss of life, the Hightower loyalists transfer rapidly, and Aegon is topped Aegon II.

Alicent, not like Rhaenyra, does survive the civil warfare, however the two are by no means reconciled, and Alicent opposes the peace-making plan of marrying Rhaenyra’s surviving son (later Aegon III) to Alicent’s granddaughter Jaehaera. She dies throughout an epidemic, two years after Aegon III takes the throne and three years after Rhaenyra’s personal loss of life.

Home Hightower survives for hundreds of years and nonetheless exists within the period of “Recreation of Thrones.” By that time, nonetheless, they’re now not the ability gamers they as soon as had been, they usually have fallen to a second-tier noble home.

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