One of the things that fans of Fire & Blood, which is the source material for House of the Dragon, know is the fact that Daemon wasn’t able to live through the Targaryen civil war because he died in the middle of the Dance of the Dragons. This happened in the fight against Aemond Targaryen, as this duel was deemed the Battle Above the Gods Eye. In that fight, Daemon, Aemond, Caraxes, and Vhagar all crashed into the lake, but Daemon’s body was never found. So, did Daemon really die in the Battle Above the Gods Eye?
Historians are convinced that Daemon also died in the Battle Above the Gods Eye, even though his body was never found. However, the theory is that he survived the fall into the lake and never returned to the war. Instead, he decided to live the rest of his life with Nettles, who also disappeared during the war.
There were a lot of things that happened to Daemon Targaryen during the Dance of the Dragons, and it was clear that he had a falling out with Rhaenyra Targaryen, especially after she had become paranoid and cruel while she was ruling King’s Landing. This could explain why the theory states that he might have survived the fall into the lake but decided to sit the rest of the war out. That said, let’s look at the theory regarding Daemon’s survival.
Did Daemon Die In The Battle Above The Gods Eye?
We know that House of the Dragon is going to explore the start of the Dance of the Dragons in season 2, as peace is no longer an option after Prince Aemond Targaryen and Vhagar killed Prince Lucerys Velaryon and Arrax. That said, blood had already been spilled, and Queen Rhaenyra will now fight for the Iron Throne against her half-brother, King Aegon II.
Of course, in Fire & Blood, there were plenty of different battles wherein the dragons were engaged. But arguably the highlight moment of the Dance of the Dragons and the greatest dragon-against-dragon war in the history of Westeros involved the fight between Prince Daemon Targaryen and Prince Aemond Targaryen. Daemon rode Caraxes while Aemond rode Vhagar.
This fight happened after Rhaenyra occupied King’s Landing after her successful invasion of the capital. She heard from the Riverlands that Prince Aemond and Vhagar were burning the different Black settlements there, as it was paramount for Rhaenyra to send aid there because the lord of Maidenpool was an ally. In that regard, she sent Daemon and Nettles there because their dragons, Caraxes and Sheepstealer, were the only ones that could fight the massive Vhagar.
However, while Daemon and Nettles were in Maidenpool, it was rumored that they became lovers. Mysaria’s spies told her what was happening there, as the White Worm told Rhaenyra that her husband had been cheating on her. At that point, Rhaenyra had grown paranoid by the fact that the dragonseeds Hugh Hammer and Ulf White had betrayed her. On top of that, she had become stressed out by the fact that holding King’s Landing was a difficult task in the middle of a war.
As such, Rhaenyra ordered the execution of Nettles, as Daemon learned of this from Lord Manfryd Mooton of Maidenpool. He allowed Nettles to escape on Sheepstealer the following morning, and Daemon departed Maidenpool for Harrenhal.
Daemon waited for 14 days in Harrenhal while challenging Prince Aemond to a battle. He slashed the weirwood tree in Harrenhal during the first 13 days until Aemond finally came on the 14th day to answer the challenge of his uncle. This was when a duel between the two strongest fighters and dragonriders of the Blacks and the Greens commenced.
In what was called the Battle Above the Gods Eye, Daemon was able to stand toe to toe against Aemond, even though Caraxes was only half the size of the massive Vhagar. However, because Caraxes was leaner and more mobile, he was able to outmaneuver Vhagar and lock onto her neck with his jaws. This caused both of the dragons to begin falling into the lake.
As the dragons were falling, Daemon jumped off of his saddle to plunge Dark Sister into the missing eye of Aemond, as the Green prince died right then and there. All four of them crashed into the lake.
Caraxes was the only one to survive the crash, as he swam to the shore before dying. It was only years later that the bodies of Aemond and Vhagar were found, with Dark Sister still lodged into the eye socket of Aemond’s skull. Meanwhile, Daemon’s body was never found. So, does that really mean that Daemon died in the fall?
As far as the historians were concerned, Daemon did indeed die in the Battle Above the Gods Eye when all four of the combatants crashed into the Gods Eye Lake. It was of no consequence that Daemon’s body was never found because historians believed that it was impossible for anyone to survive a hard fall into the lake from such a distance. That is why the conclusion was that Daemon’s body was either carried away by the current or was eaten by fish.
Could Daemon Have Survived The Fall?
Even though historians believed that Daemon couldn’t have survived the fall, there are those who actually have a theory that says that he survived the crash into the Gods Eye Lake after the battle with Aemond.
Despite the fact that it was impossible for anyone to have survived that fall, there were rumors and theories that Daemon did indeed survive it and was able to swim his way to the shore. However, instead of returning to Rhaenyra to resume the war against the Greens, he decided to stay away from his wife and the entire Targaryen civil war.
Instead, it was theorized that Daemon rendezvoused with Nettles so that they could live their lives together away from the war and the politics in King’s Landing. That’s because, at that time, Daemon had a falling out with Rhaenyra due to how she was becoming an entirely different person because of the things she experienced during the war. And the final nail in the coffin of their relationship was when Rhaenyra ordered the execution of Nettles.
As such, Daemon may have survived the fall and ended up living the rest of his life with Nettles. Another fact that supports this theory is that Nettles and Sheepstealer both disappeared after the war. And that could mean that they both lived together with Daemon, who might have wanted to spend his days with her instead of all of the craziness that was happening in court.
Nevertheless, this was just a theory that the maesters and the historians were quick to dismiss because no one could’ve survived such a fall that was said to have produced a gout of water so high it was as tall as the Kingspyre Tower at Harrenhal. As such, the theory is still just a theory.